There is a lot of construction activity going on in and around our place. We often wonder why. As I walk back home, I see workers busy with their work. The building has been constructed and the parking lot in front of the building is taking shape. Not only men and women but their children too are around. The children keep themselves busy playing by themselves and sometimes with stones and sand. Two of them are as small as my grandson and looking at them and thinking about our grandson brought home the difference in their lives. And that is Life.
I walked on thinking about life which is so different in different places and in different times. This brought to mind my years in Mumbai, specially the first two months. This was more than thirty years ago. After the world of home and school and school and home, Mumbai and college life was an entirely different world, a different life. Thinking of Mumbai is thinking of the local trains. They are the lifeline of the place. Traveling on them every day from my uncle’s place to college was exciting. My cousin had come with me once to show me where to get out. The first few days were anxious ones, I was very busy watching the names of each station that passed by.
Once I got used to it, I started noticing the people who came in and got out. So many different people and so many different lives. There was a lot of scope for imagination.
Local trains and the circulating or lending libraries, they go together. These libraries were treasure troves for book lovers. We had to pay just fifty paise for a book and we could keep it for a week. I had to travel on train for more than 1 ½ hours every day and I used to exchange books every other day. I must have read hundreds of books in those three years.
Now, after so many years, college life, those friends, the local trains , reading books and the people on the train seems like a distant dream, a different life and it had been a happy one. And I wonder that seeing something which brought to mind different lives, brought back these memories.
It happens, we never know what strikes a chord and what does not . It just happens.
( A few years ago we had been to Mumbai and had gone to my college, these photos are of my college.)