I feel like a Fraud! This isn't my story or my memory. But I am honoured to write it nevertheless.. A Writer's Perspective
Being an adult is exceptionally laborious. The constant perils of bills and ambitions and deadlines and responsibilities, really tarnish the childhood need to grow up quick. It lacks the lustre the innocent eyes of adolescence perceives as freedom. It comes at a cost. A big cost, that wears new façades every, single, day. As a man, I feel, we often have to borrow sacred moments of time, to stop and breathe and think. Make sense of it all. Amongst the hustle, to steal a quiet, pensive moment, to mull over the reality of events, may even seem necessary. And In comes the common vice of a cigarette. Just when it often seems wrong to stare into oblivion. Even afraid of being alone with your own thoughts, a cigarette personifies into a crutch. While you day dream through the streets of anxiety, the fumes of charred tobacco, provide calm and order. The mental chaos suddenly seems bearable, something to reason with. It definitely doesn't provide a solution, but almost by fogging your rigid brain, it shows you the way. Sets a plan in the castle of clouds. After all, it's fine to stare aimlessly while consuming this 15mins of life. An unspoken respect to space and time, is granted to you. To just.. be. A silhouette of such imagery is what I remember of my Uncle. Often standing in loungewear, in the crammed corner of his bedroom balcony. The world beneath his feet, carrying on as usual, while he inhales this intoxication, slowly. You'd never be able to reason with how 7cms of filtered, man-made nicotine, can provide temporary comfort. Yet, unable to cloud your judgement, it still stands at the pedestal of addiction. Craving for the attention between your fingers and lips, as badly as you crave it. Often the man would have bursts of enthusiasm between puffs, cheering the children of the streets, as they played cricket with gusto. He'd alternate roles, between an avid fan, to an unbiased umpire, score-sheeting their gameplay, from up above. His involvement was never greeted as interference, but that of a prestigious audience, putting their meagre play on display. I don't remember if I would join him in this feat. But today as I reminiscence, I see him from a distance. Standing in the shadows, of the archway to his bedroom. As if it were real, as if, for that 'one more time'. Do I want to know what he's thinking? Probably not. For I too am a child, fulfilling my own prophecy. And I don't know if I want to approach him today and just hug him. Or if I want to be a mere spectator and observe him being, what I remember of him. Watching it play out, from a string of memories. But do you know what's fascinating amongst it all? That in this moment right here, him, the balcony, the cigarette, the road noise and life going by,.. the ethnicity of those street children was not immortalised. No one cared how they prayed or what they ate. What clothes adorned their backs or even if the skill they had, was worthy of a bat and a ball. It was an encapsulated moment in time, when mankind was existing, living their own freedoms and making the most, of the one thing we all have in common - time.