Thursday, December 09, 2010

Glimpses of a day

Another day, the sun wakes up a little later than yesterday, the air exerts a bit more chill today, but the clock is still adamant to alarm at the same time. She curses as she bolts right up on the bed. The covers slide down the smoothness of her skin and she shivers with cold, the coldness of her dreams. Also the thermostat might need to be turned higher. She looks around to locate the source of that annoying screaming buzz of the alarm and brings down her hand swiftly to end it. Of course the ritual will be repeated again tomorrow. But for now, there is silence. Aah, the silence! How easy is it to just grab the pillow and wander back into sleep. Resist the temptation! She bends forward and holds her feet, her legs still stretched out. Hence the curve of her back is now almost horizontal, pressed tightly against her legs, the lower spine pushing against the skin accentuates its presence while the upper half is hidden by the curls of her hair.


She is jogging to the tram stop. The pavements are being stocked up by the fresh produce of the day, dripping water all around as they are moved out from the trucks. She sidesteps the workers, the boxes and the puddles with equal ease, without any visible slowing of her pace. The smell wafting from a bakery reminds her of the buttered toast lying abandoned in her kitchenette as she dashed out of the house. As she approaches the junction, she manages to catch sight of the approaching tram. Instantly, the jog turns to a run, and a flash of beautiful mass rushes up the street, coming to a halt just as the tram also does.


She looks at the watch. It's just been 20 minutes since she last looked. 3 more hours left to the end of the shift. She glances at the two kids fussing about in the store. Their mother is outside having a puff, perhaps to snatch away a few minutes of relief from her kids. They do seem to be troublesome. They had already picked up a whole lot of packets from the shelves and after giving a glance or two, placed them haphazardly at the nearest available space; only coincidentally would the new shelf belong to the same category as the packet. They had also knocked off a part of one of the displays. Her favourite display, the one that took her a whole shift to build from the basic blocks. Yet she has been sitting there passively, nevertheless, observing them continuously. Hopefully remembering all their actions, because once they leave, she will have to go about and re-shelve all the toys in their rightful places and also restore her master display. For now, though, she is just watching. And hearing her rumbling stomach, complaining about its neglect. Not a morsel today and it is already past lunch-time. Have to wait until the shift ends to get hold of any food. And now, she is just half-way through it. Why am I even doing this? Yeah, it is the usual time of the day for the introspective thoughts. Is it worth it? She gets up to dust away these nagging doubts and busies herself by righting the wrongs, of the kids at least.


Her tram is winding its way through the bustling streets. With the shops starting to down the shutters, more people are emerging onto the roads. Despite it being quite dark, there is no sign of any stars appearing in the sky. Maybe some clouds, maybe the bright street lights. She occasionally looks at this scene through the window, as a necessary change from sifting through the library book and her notes, preparing for the assignment tomorrow. She also thinks back to the afternoon. She had to rush to her class directly from the store because the manager delayed her after the shift, discussing his plans for the forthcoming Christmas sale. As a result, she didn't have the luxury to go home or freshen up. She looks at her clothes, crumpled slightly, and aches to be home soon and be able to relax in the shower. Nevertheless, she would have been an artist's delight, especially those dabbling in portraits. Her beautifully-cut face is complemented by the studious look given out by the glasses and the concentration-filled eyes behind them.


On the bed, staring at some youtube video, her hand is mechanically feeding her the rice from the little bowl in her lap. Plain rice with a dash of salt and lemon. She was drained of all energy to have been able to cook anything else. Quite a catch-22 this is, sometimes- you need the energy to cook food, but you need the food to gain the energy. She reaches out for the clock to ascertain that the alarm is set, just to be safe in case she dozes off, as she oft does, with the laptop running, the half-empty bowl on the bed, the glasses astray, and the dreams abound.

Just another day after all.


Karam podi said...


thread said...

You are a wonderful person, and I'm very happy to know you.

skp said...

> Plain rice with a dash of salt and lemon

Why ? super awesome south indian powder nahi tha uske ghar me ?

Vivek said...

You got in her head or what?

Loved it. It was like 'reading' a movie like "Lost in translation" albeit with a different story :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful writing Rama.

The descriptions are so vivid, it seems as if you were stealthily following her around, observing her, taking notes about her, and then penned the story of her day.


mythalez said...

@Su, you should have said "Su?", as always :P

@paccha, :P

@patidar, nahi, tab tak introduce nahin kiya gaya usko :P

@vivek, thanku :P

@kunal, hehe :D