I waved my hand to bid farewell to my mom. My brothers were still asleep. I closed my eyes to recall the happy moments that I have shared with this place. Leaving the place where you have spent your childhood is difficult. It makes you sad but still you can’t ignore the feeling of excitement for starting a new life in a new place. I was keen to begin my fabulous new life.
I sat down with my head pressed on the glass window of the car. I was watching the world beyond the glass, pass by.
‘Have you checked everything?’ enquired my dad.
‘Yes.’ I said with a weak smile.
Finally, I was going to a place that will help me to understand what I really wanted from life. I was heading towards Delhi, the heart of our India. After around twenty minutes, we arrived at the railway station. The car slowed down. I swept the area outside the station with an irritated speculation. I hate the crowded place. It made me feel uneasy. After a long discussion, the two coolies agreed to carry my six luggage at a reasonable price. Members of middle-class families like us always had to struggle in each and every situation. This was no exception.
‘Why do you need to carry so many stuff?’ My father asked with an angry look.
I decided to ignore the question. No one understood me. I didn’t know for how long I would stay in Delhi, so I tried my best to place my whole room in that luggage.
‘Twenty minutes are still left for the train to arrive. Wait here, I shall be back with a cup of tea.’ said my dad.
He pointed his finger towards the luggage. I nodded. My father never got tired of drinking tea. I knew that he will arrive at the last moment and his only excuse will be that he was checking the platform number. I quickly opened my facebook account and in an instant, I got glued to my mobile phone. My news feed acted like a daily newspaper for me. The loud horn of a train distracted me from my newspaper reading and I could see my train arriving. All of a sudden there were a huge rush and my eyes were searching for my father. I spotted him in the crowd and like most of the time, his facial expression was blank. Earlier, it used to be a day when he smiled a lot in front of me.
‘The train has arrived.’ I said without complaining.
‘I was checking whether we are on the correct platform or not.’ said my dad innocently.
A sly smile crept on my lips because I already knew the answer. Few things never change. The coolies quickly shifted the luggage inside the train. My father and I sat inside until the train whistled.
‘You can go now’ I said.
He didn’t answer anything and got down on the train. The train started moving slowly. Slowly, my father disappeared from my vision. Slowly, I slipped into my memory lane. Five years ago the situation was different. In a similar manner, I was heading towards Kota, the city of coaching institutes.
When the train started its motion, my father sighed and turned his face towards the view afforded by the large glass window of the train.
‘Pay attention to your studies.’ he said wearily.
‘Yes, dad.’ I agreed.
‘You have responsibilities now. You have to prove yourself. Life doesn’t give a second chance.’ My father said speculatively.
‘I shall do my best.’ I said.
His head snapped back around, ‘If you will give your best, you will succeed.’
‘One also requires luck.’ I said.
‘One needs to work hard. Everyone thinks that you are an intelligent girl. Don’t spoil that reputation.’
‘We won’t be able to enjoy our life if we will keep on trying to please our society. Moreover, pleasing our society is next to impossible.’
My father’s expression grew tight and hard. He turned back towards the window. Deep in my heart, I knew that my words have wounded him. But I also knew that it was necessary for him to realize that we should not care about the society. Their views and opinions should not affect our way of living.
I went to Kota for becoming a doctor but I ended up repeating my twelfth board exam for improvement. What did I do later? I went for Geography Honors instead of English Honors and here I am now going to Delhi for working on a newly launched magazine named as ‘Random Views About Random Stuffs’. Life should never be planned. Even if you plan for the future, be ready to expect a twist that will spill water in your plans. Be prepared to face the unprepared stuff.
The train journey was tiring. Spending thirty-six hours in a train can never be easy. There were a great hustle and bustle at the Delhi station. Like all other station, it was crowded with visages from all over the country. Two coolies agreed to carry the luggage but the money they demanded was very high as compared to our coolies from Assam. Just after placing my first step, I wished myself a good look for all the struggles that lay ahead. I automatically assumed that life was going to be hard here. A cool breeze was blowing. I inhaled deeply the salt-tinged air. I gave a taxi driver the address of my flat that my friend has fixed for me. This wasn’t the first time I was travelling in Delhi but the feelings that I was experiencing was a new one. After exact thirty-five minutes, I reached my flat in Rajouri Garden. The security guard approached me.
‘Whom are you visiting?’ He asked.
‘My friend, Sandhya have rented a room here in my name. She must have told you.’ I said.
‘Sandhya.. Are you the girl from Assam?’ he asked.
‘Yes. My name is Ishiqa.’ I said.
He handed me the keys and went away. I was expecting him to help me with the luggage. I waited for a minute or two then decided to help myself. I lifted a bag and soon placed it down. It was too heavy for me to carry. I started shifting my luggage by sliding them on the floor in a slow manner. I placed them right in front of the lift. With this action of mine, I actually blocked one whole way but I didn’t care.
‘You are blocking my way. Let me help you.’ Someone said in a deep voice.
Without waiting for a reply, he started shifting my luggage inside the life. Was I seriously looking that miserable? The answer was no, this selfish creature was just clearing his way by shifting my luggage. I nodded to show that I agreed with my inner voice. His back was facing me. I was unable to see his face but I was able to see his powerful shoulder muscles while he was lifting my baggage. After the process ended, that unknown guy cleared his throat and said, ‘You owe me thanks.’
I shifted my head to look at the owner of the heavenly voice and immediately regretted my decision. He had chiseled jaw, pellucid black eyes, framed by jet black eyelashes. His hair was gelled up in a sexy, messy way. His feature was stern and arrogant. His black shirt showed the powerful muscles underneath. In short, he was drop dead gorgeous.
‘Are you done checking me out?’ He asked with a wicked grin.
I opened my mouth to protest but quickly closed it. I could feel the lump beginning to swell in my throat as my mouth went dry. I suddenly became self-conscious. I could feel my cheeks burning. He directed me to move inside the lift. Without a word, I stepped inside.
‘Which floor?’ He asked.
‘Fifth’ I said and swallowed hard.
I tried to thank him but my words were lost. I was standing here like a dumb girl for my floor to arrive. Never in my life, had I experienced such a feeling. It wasn’t crazy, it was insane. But it wasn’t my fault, attractive people can make anyone nervous. To my relief, the doors of the lift open.
‘I guess you want me to shift these items inside your room.’ He said.
‘Yes, please.’ I said.
He nodded and helped me in shifting everything inside my room.
‘Thank you.’ I said as he was about to leave the room.
‘You are welcome.’ he smiles and went away.
I closed the door and sat on the floor. My flat only had one room, one kitchen, one bathroom and one balcony. Sandhya had already arranged a bed, a study table, and a chair. Everything looked perfect. My phone started ringing while I was trying to arrange the stuff. I checked my phone to realize that there were five missed calls from my mom.
‘Hello, mom. ‘I said.
‘Did you reach Delhi?’
‘Yeah, I have reached my room just now.’
‘Is the flat good?”
‘Yeah. It will work.’
‘Okay. Take care and work properly. Apart from the job, you should also prepare for the IAS exam. I am not feeling good that you have wasted so much of money on your education and now you will do nothing apart from writing.’
‘Mom, I will think about it. I need to freshen up now.’ I said and disconnected the call.
I called Sandhya and after the third ring she finally picked up the call.
‘Hey! I have reached my room. The flat is beautiful. Thanks.’ I said.
‘You are welcome. I am glad you liked it. Take rest. I am with Prashant. I shall call you later.’ She said.
‘Yeah, sure,’ I said.
I secretly wished that her relationship with Prashant goes on. Now a days, break up has become a new trend. I started arranging my room when I felt hyperactive after eating two packets of chips. After an hour past midnight, I drifted off to sleep.