Ropar Diaries – I was jealous

It was the first Saturday of the internship, three of us were red and blue, a little less because of the work but a little more because of the weather. At sharp 6’o clock we boarded the bus to the market; excited, yet a little tired. Sprinting trees, birds dancing on the surface of the water of ponds, workers chilling by the roadside after a hectic day, the clouds racing with us, little children staring the wheels as their eyes reflected some unsaid dreams; I had too much to savor that day.

We had two hours to explore Roopnagar, and I craved for Hamirpur, Roopnagar was less engaging than the underrated town of Hamirpur. Me and Komal Ma’am went straight to the salon, girls have so much to shed, tears and unwanted hair; sleeveless was the need of the hour. Shubhum sir went to the temple and I was jealous. Periods, huh!! There was more to come to make the child in me jealous.

The wax was hot, my skin turned red, swelled like it happens after an insect bite, the salon aunty stood still and I wonder why. She started explaining to me the address of a nearby skin specialist in pure Punjabi and I could just guess her words, well, it is so beautiful to feel for someone. The streets suffer vengeance, maybe because kindness is little shy to come outside, but it certainly resides in the world of ours.

It was 7:40 in the evening and the bus was about to arrive, as we were heading towards the bus stop, Shubham sir noticed a couple in their sixties, stooping, smiling, and I missed a beat. Their wrinkled skin was a canvas of memories speaking about the happy years of their love, their compatibility, indicating how love grows stronger with age, their abreast walk left a few more footprints which would not disappear even in the deadliest of storms for love has infinite power, permanence, I could not stop myself from parsing their togetherness (I was a little jealous and I don’t know why).

“You look great together”, I said. They smiled. “ Are you a student of IIT Ropar?”, the lady asked. We exchanged a few words, I discovered that the man graduated from a nearby college of which I have no idea. The bus arrived and I left, but I kept staring at them till they disappeared.

I left a part of me with them. The songs of love are not what I have written all this while, but the ones which I have been missing all this while.

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