A fellow traveller

Why do you have that string on your wrist? Aren’t you a non-believer? Why wear such a religious symbol then? I asked why you wear yours. He said because he believes in higher powers. That his life has a meaning. A destiny writ in heavens by Gods themselves. It reminds him of all this when he needs to be disillusioned of the drudgeries of life. I said that’s the same reason why I wear mine. To be reminded. Reminded of what I consider to be my meaning. Because I need a friend. Someone with whom I can relate to. A fellow traveller on my journey of life.

 

Was travelling in a train and watching the fields pass by. People sleeping and waking up and sleeping again. A contented boredom. And I saw this very string on the floor. Besides my shoes. Had nothing to do and nothing to think. So idly observed. The motions of the train and small gusts of wind did not allow it any rest. It was just there. By accident. It will be lost of my attention soon. By accident. Of all the random objects in that train, it was probably the least significant. Just lying there. It did not choose to be so or wish to be so, for it was just a string. Of all the things that one could be, how useless it was to be a string on the train floor. But it still was there.So many odds stacked against it. A lack of purpose, its imminent dissolution, a fate of wither awaiting it, its infinite uselessness- all of them were defied. Because it was still there. Defying all forces and odds. Maybe it was a part of some other entity before serving another useless purpose, but it’s not now.Now it’s free. Condemned to be free. Burdened with its freedom. Condemned to find meaning and purpose on its own. Exiled from the heaven of non-existence.  Because it was still there. Besides my shoes. And I thought Oh Fuck. That string on the floor is me! All that was fundamentally true for it, was true for me! A closer friend I could never find. A better reminder there could never be. Reminder of what makes this world beautiful and this life worth living, for me. Reminder of my freedom.  On different lanes but on the same road, it was my fellow traveller. And so I picked it up and tied it to my wrist. –

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Gaurav Somwanshi

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