I woke up late today. Leisures of sunday as you know! It is a bright sunny winter morning. I walked up to my balcony and took out one Marlboro.
Eyes half open and with little shivering I absorbed the heat from every puff I was smoking and began to plan out how I am going to spend the rest of my day. I received a call from this girl I had met a month back asking me out for a movie. I was not in the mood. There was a subtle sadness in the wind today. Or maybe it was just my half opened eyes unable to see clearly. Nevertheless I rejected the offer making some lame excuse. I wanted to spend the day with myself even if it meant stressing out the whole day surrounded by a pool of crappy thoughts on how boring the life has become now!
It’s been 2 months I shifted in Pune and despite all the happening aura I had heard about I was just not able to get in sync with it.
I finished my 3rd cigarette and went to take a hot shower. I am used to boiling water hitting against my skin burning all the stress and reminding me of the stone I have become. I decided to wear loose cargos and a black sweatshirt. Totally my stuff you know!
Grabbed my wallet and keys, locked my flat and switched on the thought transmission from my brain. This little devil loves to be the pain in my arse by constantly feeding me with totally u related thought streams and compelling me to pick any one and then be lost in it. Time flies, thoughts are the drivers for my time!
I went to nearest Starbucks and was wondering what I shall order. Coffee for sure but which one? Its been 2 years and yet am unable to figure out their menu and products. I wonder if they are the grand illusionists or I am blindingly dumb.
I started to regret the rejection I made to this girl for a movie. But, fuck it. Who cares. I took my order and went out to smoke a puff or two.
I was about to lit it that I forgot.
It was time for my medication.
I hallucinate a lot.
She came smiling sweetly giving me those bitter pills and kissing me on cheek.
“You will be fine. I love you“, she said and I finally came out of my visions.
I do not remember how or when I found myself stranded on this land. I am not even sure if this is an island or just a remote part of some landmass. My lower back hurts a little towards my left ribcage and there are a few bruises on my knee as well. So far I am able to walk properly but the back does hurt sometimes with shootings of pain leaving me groaning with discomfort for next ten minutes. For God’s sake why can’t I remember anything? It is like until today’s morning everything has been swept clean and erased completely. There is not even a figment of imagination left to recover from the traces of my memory bank. Nevertheless, I shall plan what to do next!
I feel hunger slowly trying to gush out its frustrated lava in my stomach. Let’s see what I can find out. I think my lower two ribs are broken. God! Where the hell to find a doctor in this forsaken land? It seems to be late afternoon. I think whoever left me or however I came here, I surely have lost all my belongings assuming I did have some ever! I think I shall follow this soothing wind flowing towards east. I can feel the freshness when it blows past my worn out face. I need a shower I guess. It stinks. Have I been on a bathing fast? I can’t stop from humoring myself especially when in a few hours I will be praying that there are no man eaters on this island. Oh wait! It’s coming! I see a room with LCD TV and a couch, navy blue in color. I can recall the scenes from this movie, very gruesome ones, I guess yeah, Cannibal Holocaust! That’s the name. Thank god! Well, that was a good start. Out of all the things that could have happened in my life before landing here, Mr. God why would you make me recall scenes from that movie? Han? I quickly begin to walk towards east arming myself with thick branch that fell off this tree. I guess I am not a botanist because I do not recognize the vegetation here. There is pin drop silence around me, not even birds flying over my head or hiding behind the thick bush there. I just hope I find some help.
After walking a mile or so I find a small pond. At last I can quench my thirst but it hurts to bend down. I think I shall sleep for a few hours. I already feel exhausted. No food only water yet! But I have to keep walking. I can’t trust this unknown land. Searching for food I don’t want to end up between somebody’s canines with my red water serving as wine for their dinner. What is this sweet smell? Hmm! Fruits ripening somewhere close. I love the fresh mangoes. I think I’ll save a few more before I start looking for shelter. Sun will set in the next hour or so.
It all sounded like I am living a typical movie plot right now with a guy left stranded on a remote island and learning to survive but no! I just woke up, brushing my teeth and trying to remember scenes from the dream last night. It felt so real that I woke up looking for bruises in my knee and softly probing my lower back for any broken bones! Time is running and am getting late for office. Lets pack up!
You are my cigarette. Your taste on my lips, and fragrance all over me, gets me addicted, to you.
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He is standing on top of his 16-floor tall office, with a cigarette between the index and middle finger of his heavily jeweled-with-different-stones left palm, already nearing its filter now. A thousand stars, a hundred thoughts, a chilly night and just a half step for the penultimate ending of the story. He takes the last drag and stashes the bud, among the pile of other buds on the floor. He looks up in the sky. But that is not where the thousand stars lie. The zooming cars with their headlights set on high beam below, the street lamps, and the neon signs of Deloitte, Yahoo, Microsoft and other giants around, are the stars that are visible now. As he looks up, and inhales the smoke in a long deep drag, and feels the familiar sense of satisfaction and relaxation spread through his body, followed by the unpleasant sensation of burning in his throat and lungs, he mentally reminded himself to cut down. But now was not the time to think about himself, there were far more important things to deal with right now; and the tobacco converted into smoke vanishes into the cold air with fog.
Things had taken such great turns in life, that he forgot what the stars in the sky looked like anymore.
“Is it over now? Is this it?”
He asks himself. He no longer remembers what the fight was for. He no longer remembers what brought him here. In this moment, in these times. He knows he must run for it, but the question is,
“Run for what? What is the final destination? When am I supposed to stop running? When does it end?”
He looks at his palm. Shaking today, not the firm and stable palm he had just yesterday in the meeting room. He can’t understand why is it shaking, even when the telecom giant, InterNetworks had won the deal. Another feather in the hat. Last three-quarters had seen an exponential growth in the value of his company. A company today, a young start-up yesterday. Maybe it is the cold winter air and the only-good-for-looks business suit that can’t keep him warm.
10 years. It has been 10 years since he started out with his life like a Phoenix. Burnt to ashes and rose to heights. For 10 years the only thought he lived with was to reach a point where the world knew who he was. Of course, in that everyone was hidden just that one whom he wanted to win back.