I came out of the basement slinging my bag over my right shoulder, praying to God for no rains as I had no umbrella whatsoever. 3 hours of tution had driven me nuts. I looked across the road to see a guy staring point blank in my direction, I ignored him, balled both my fists incase I needed some karate kicks and started walking back home. It was so crowded. It seemed like EVERYONE WAS SCREAMING.
Honks, beeps, shouts, fights, lights.
Jeez. It's not even funny.
Malviya Nagar sucks at 8: 00 p.m.
The guy selling the furniture was too busy fighting with a customer who was shamelessly bargaining. A girl with long hair, branded clothes and, a hot phone leaned out of her balcony and looked up to watch me as I walked. I kept my trail of thoughts.
5 missed calls..Need to get back at them once I get back home.
My phone startled me as it started bellowing my ringtone- Viva La Vida. Madly enough, I sometimes let my phone ring long coz I like to listen to my ringtone again and again ;D
Mom calling...reported my phone.
Through all that bustle, I managed to yell through the speaker, "Yeah Ma?"
"Are you planning to come back in this century?" I strained my ears to hear her words properly.
"Jeez! It takes time to walk back from Malviya Nagar, Mother. Are you aware of that?" I retorted looking at my school building looming infront me.
"Where are you right now?" Her voice seemed so distant.
"INFRONT OF THE SCHOOL'S BACKGATE!" I yelled again, my ears sweating against the phone.
"You've reached till there??? That's IT?" Her hysterical voice sounded over the cellphone.
A cycle went ringing past me, followed by a slight drizzle. I mentally cursed no one in particular. "Ma, what do you want?"
"What do you Mean what I want?!?!?!, I'm concerned for God's sake!! Why do you have to walk through that dirty godforsaken place! Can't you just take an auto?! Your father will get really angry at you for walking from there at this time!" Now, that, was loud.
"Ma, I'm trying to find my way through a ridiculously traffic ridden Khirki Extension, can we have this argument later?"
I saw a man madly honking at a car infront of him. I aimed a nice dirty abuse at him.
"Are you with someone?"
"Yes, mother, my boyfriend, is walking beside me. I just found him loittering around in Malviya Nagar. So, I skipped my tution class and went out with him instead."
"Cheenu, when you come back, just roll up your jeans. I don't want to wash jeans that have drainage water sticking at the underside."
The line went dead. For the sake of Merlin's saggy low-waist pants! That's all she had to say!
To think, that's all it took to shut my mom up. I decided to ignore the intricacies of the mind of a mother, skipped through another puddle just in time to get bathed by mudwater by a car rushing past. As I stood there, in complete shock, a few bystamders sniggered.
A few curses later, I'm walking past the narrow lanes of this old forgotten part of Delhi..where Innovas stand for hours caught in traffic. Where people are dumb enough to get their Tractors, BMW's and Auto's to. Little kids in rags run after each other. Harmless cows and pigs consider themselves an important part of the world. Bullock carts EVERYWHERE and aunties wearing stupefying glittering pink and gold saris.
Honks, beeps, shouts, fights, lights. Jesus! It's CRAZY there! It's like nobody shuts up!
As I literally walked jumping over cars and thinking of myself as a spider woman (:P)...I walked on..My feet hurt. I had been out since 8 in the morn..tuts, then working in school for a debate, Malviya nagar market, then tuts again, and now I had to get to work. I dodged another car. And all of a sudden, saw a cow in between all that madness. Ha! I mean, a bike, an auto and a car were wedged and in between all that- a cow! Holy Madness!
I walked on a few more metres, saw a guy wearing a fake Fendi T-shirt and trying to look all cool. I gave him a look of absolute dismay. I saw a woman, in super mini's wearing a pencil heel and making her way through the broken, rocky roads of Khirki Extension. The mud filled slime potholes were celebrities here.
Citywalk's huge figure loomed. And for some reason, it's smoothness, instead of being a relief suffocated me even more. I walked on past a chowmein stall, a random gol gappa wala who was screaming at me deploring me to eat coz apparently "I was too thin to live!"
Absolutely mad, I tell you.
It was raining now. (Apparently, God doesn't have time for my prayers). Things were SO loud. My ears were starting to ache. The honks, the over-heated cars through which I was trying to find my way, the sneaky bikes who made way through the tiniest space between two cars. I ran my way through the crowded cross-section. A man almost ran me over. I breathed a sigh of relief as I walked down the road to Saket.
This was another world.
The glitterati. The oomph, the style. The best of the two worlds. The worst of the two worlds. A man zoomed past me in a Cayenne.. I held my bag tighter anf quickened my pace. I was getting madly drenched every minute. It was late beyond belief. As I walked on, I realized that the traffic was slowing down beside me. There were millions of cars jammed at the front..It was like a madhouse. Sea of cars and cars and cars.
Honks and shouts. Honks, Honks and shouts again.
The A.C.'s blew out heat and I walked in between all that.I brushed back the water from my forehead and took off my glasses as I was completely drenched by now.
I hugged myself as a gush of wind blew past me and my phone started ringing again.
Mom calling..it said...7 missed calls..
Wtf? Seriously, in the pst 10 minutes??? 7 freaking missed calls? Who??
Honk, shouts, cacophony, fights, honks, honks, honks.
"YEAH MA!?" I yelled.
"Are you still planning to come home or have you changed your mind?"
"MA!!!!!!" I yelled exasperatedly and within seconds, my mother- a wise lady- cut the phone.
I walked on, again consumed by silent and concpicuous thoughts.
The lights of DLF blinded me. The way they always did. A colony of rural workers loomed infront of me. I slowed down. A little girl with eat, oily, plaited hair was playing in the rain.
Remembering my sudden irritation with rain a few days back.
I smiled at her and got a smile back. I walked on..a baby was waddling in the rain. I looked around for its mother. He seemed to have gotten the crazy idea of going to the traffic ridden road I waited, in panic, hoping that someone from its house- if the half-cloth, half-brick broken minuscule structure could be called a house- to come out and take it away. It waddled through the rain again and started drinking water from the puddle beside the road. Disgusted, I ran to it, picked it up, made it spit out the water. (It looked quite depressed after that) Only to find the baby snatched from my hand a minute later by a grouchy looking woman. I opened my mouth to explain her the situation when she walked into the house and slammed the door on my face. So much so for gratitude.
And I walked on.
A few eveteasers, madhouse rush, some more malls, some more glitter fest, some more flashy cars, some more desperate Delhiites, and some more minutes later. I was back in the lane that led to my house. I sighed.
The fresh smell, the fragrance of the dust that follows the rain, the silence around me. God, at times, Saket can be heavenly.
And I rang the doorbell. Mom was busy with a call when she opened the door- glared at me- kept her hands on the mouthpiece only to say ,"Dad got to know you walked back home. Now you're going to get a nice one. Just wait and watch."
She resumed her chit-chat with my father, who's presently away on a visit to my retarded sister. (Hence, my little walk back home :P)
I got back to all the calls that I had missed in between the half hour madness that I had just experienced.
A few minutes later, Dad, on an STD call, gave me a nice one about the dangers "lurking" around in the streets of Delhi. Jeez, fathers can be so paranoid at times.
And I closed my eyes, tired. Tired of all the madness. But yes, I had gained another day's experience. Delhi, I tell you.