I had to board a bus from Vashi to Pune. I was familiar with boarding point and hence chose to travel from there.However, during booking as I was choosing the boarding point, I noticed some change in the address. As I reached the boarding point, I realized it was less than a km away from the old address and a notice which was put up there explained me the scenario. A huge number of buses were blocking the road at previous boarding point and hence it was shifted to a place where there were no shops or houses around.
I had reached the place almost half an hour before the scheduled time, afraid of sudden traffic jams, which is a usual phenomenon in monsoon season in Mumbai. As I waited there for some time, I scanned through the people around me and noticed there were only two people who were passengers. The remaining crowd there included a beggar, two snack sellers and few porters to board parcels on the buses. Waiting there for an hour, naturally I didn’t make attempt to talk to the crowd around. Why would I, right? Only those passengers and I, we were exchanging gazes. After standing there for 15 min, bored of standing I just asked a fellow passenger, “VRL?” (The name of bus) and he nodded affirmatively.
I tried checking the bus location on a link provided but it failed multiple times. So finally called the bus and found that it was running late by around 30 minutes. The bad news was accompanied by rain, which was making its presence felt by now. Rain and Mumbai are like bff’s in this season. Initially it was just drizzling. I looked at that fellow passenger and he too showed helplessness. In the meantime, the coolies put a plastic cover on boxes and hid under it.
We stood there like ‘dudes’, as if we chose to stand in the rain. But then rain had its own way to break that attitude. It started increasing its pace slowly. We looked at the tree behind and tried to adjust below the thickest branch it had. Now, the snack sellers also chose to get under plastic covers and the fellow passengers exchanged gaze and smiled at our incapabilities.
After few minutes, suddenly it started raining cats and dogs and we were finally frustrated. I was looking at my formal leather shoes and feeling sad about them. All I could do was put my mobile in the bag and try to protect the bag as I wasn’t sure about its capabilities to resist water. I had given up already and assumed I will go all wet to Pune. Already my mind was flooded with thoughts that the passenger next to me in the bus will be irritated and all. And my thought process broke as some voice fell on my ears. I looked in the direction of sound and there was this person who was shouting at us from below the cover,
“Jaldi se aajao, aajao, aajao”
(come fast, come, come)
I thought for few seconds and then ran to that plastic sheet.
The guy asked me, “why were you getting wet when you could have covered yourself here “
I said, ” just like that”
But I thought to myself.
I got wet as I had created an unnecessary constraint around me of what’s right and what’s not
I got wet because I was reluctant to associate with those people
I was reluctant because I had some self-image
N out of everything I realized I was hesitant to take the offer, whereas he was ready to share whatever resources he had. I won’t have expected that from someone having good resources like an umbrella.
It’s not about what you have but how much you are really ready to share. 🙂