It’s funny how all of us take whatever has been provided to us for granted so easily, and never realize that even if one of these abilities disappear from our lives, it will make our lives so difficult. Most of the human species has been blessed with 5 primary sense organs; the nose for odor, the eyes for sight, the tongue for taste, the ears for hearing and the skin for touch and yet, in our daily routine we rarely acknowledge even one of them.
The uncertain weather and the urge to question my morals gave me a push for experiencing the world without one of these senses, the sense of hearing. I had never imagined the world without its music, but now I wanted to explore.
Tying my laces as I stepped out of my room and comfort zone, I put my earphones on, with the maximum volume possible, accompanied by the most irrelevant songs. I wanted to experience a different kind of place, a place without any sound effects. Hence, my long walk of withdrawal started.
Crossing the road I saw a lot of things which seemed unbelievably weird and somehow wrong without the sounds which were supposed to be associated with them, replaced by random lyrics. An unknown city always gives me a thrilling feel, and this time it was without its most important element which made it even more exciting.
Starting my venture from a crossroad, I could see innumerable people and their innumerable situations. As busy as Bangalore’s traffic is, I could interpret people’s expressions and only assume what they must be going through. I could see how tensed that lady looked as she was stopped by a policeman for not wearing a helmet, and yet, couldn’t hear a word either of them said. I could see how a happy couple walked down the road, smiling and talking to each other and yet, I couldn’t hear a word either of them said, even when I was walking just beside them. My entire 2 hour and 11 kilometers long walk was only based on assumptions of what other people were talking about.
It’s only when one is in a state of mind like I was that day that one acknowledges other people’s existence and as I realized this, a big fat smile covered my face as I kept on walking on unknown roads of Bangalore.
After I had walked for a while I decided to take a short break and so I stood near an abandoned statue of the Hindu lord, Ganesha’s statue which was kept on the slab which covers the drain. Just few minutes after which, a middle aged man and his wife crossed the road, and came towards the statue. The man bowed down to the abandoned lord and took out a coin from his pocket which he threw in the drain and all this while, his wife was glaring at him. What they had after the incident seemed to be an argument but I couldn’t hear them and so, I decided to start walking again.
I felt deep sonder that day, realizing that each passerby, each person driving a vehicle on the road and each of the vendors has a life as complex and vivid as I feel mine is. We seldom ignore the fact that we are all human beings and our lives are like an anthill, with numerous stories, experiences, ideas, mindsets, ambitions and routines, buried underground and we just portray a part of our lives to the people around us.
Walking ahead I saw a lady dressed differently and being a foreigner, she was being looked at and talked about. She walked ahead of me and I could see people talking about her as she crossed them, although I couldn’t hear their soft giggles and their gossips, I could make out that they were talking about how she had dressed up. While this lady was being judged at this side of the road, right across it I spotted an old man asking for help as his car had stopped working and instantly four people were pushing his car, making it work and out of gratitude, the old man waved at them from his car’s window. So many things happen at the same point of time in so many lives, and yet we don’t realize it.
When I reached the main road I saw a hospital right in front of me and as I continued strolling I came across a car which had a man seated inside it, shedding tears and when I made eye contact with him, he buried his face in the steering wheel. Hurriedly, I walked across the hospital and reached a 2 wheeler’s showroom, where I saw an elated daughter hugging her father for probably the new bike he must have got her. In the span of just five minutes I had seen both happiness and grief and this, had me thinking about the diversity yet again.
Now that I had walked for so long, I was a bit tiered and hence I was now strolling. I crossed a street full of vegetable vendors, some of them smoking cigarettes behind their carts and some yelling offers to sell their vegetables. I saw a lady screaming at one of the vendors for something I couldn’t hear and I kept on walking.
After walking on an unknown street for so long, I later realized that all this while I was walking on the wrong road and now I was lost. I took this opportunity to explore even more and it was only after half an hour that I could find my way back, after meeting dead ends and judgmental eyes. Finally, when I reached home I realized how hectic my day was and that there are so many things that go unnoticed every single second just because we are all taking what we have, for granted.