As usual, I was stuck in traffic near the Baiyappanahalli Metro Station on my way to work today, when something unusual happened. The AC in my share cab, broke down. So, windows were rolled down, sleeves were rolled up, collar buttons were unbuttoned and frustrated sighs were heaved as we waited patiently in the traffic.
Just outside the cab, within a 2 feet distance, there was this random dude on his motorcycle, talking to someone on the phone in Kannada. He had taken off his helmet because none of us were moving anyway and I could see his wispy facial hair almost hiding his wide grin. The one on the other side of the line must be a romantic interest because men rarely smile that much on a normal call. He looked so stupid and delirious that it became hard for me to stop grinning to myself too.
I was thinking of rolling my window back up to give his phone call some more privacy, when I suddenly heard a beautiful, melodious voice coming my way…
Dehleez pe mere dil ki
Jo rakhe hain tune kadam
Tere naam pe meri zindagi
Likh di mere humdum
Haan seekha maine jeena jeena kaise jeena
Haan seekha maine jeena mere humdum…
In the middle of this crazy, unruly 9 am traffic, I could see his calm, sweaty face behind his wispy facial hair, his eyes closed, his fingers tapping rhythmically on the handle of his motorcycle as he sang soulfully into the tiny mic of his earphone to his beloved. His voice had such melody and pain that I sat mesmerized by my cab window amidst all that commotion and smoke, as if transported to the land of the solitary reaper and just listened. He couldn’t finish the song as the traffic lights turned green soon after and he quickly sped away before I could even look at him one last time.
In this world full of business and haste, such moments keep us alive. Such moments make us realize that there is love, passion, beauty and music all around, even in the middle of an insane, loud, inconsiderate crowd of men and machines. And no matter how brief such a moment is, I am grateful for it.