Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Sisters & Stories....

Face reading is not exactly an art. And my face reading lessons sprang up in the most unexpected of all places; my daily commute in the ladies compartment of the Mumbai local trains. Every countenance, every expression reflects what the mind and heart says; whether there's a tussle going on between the two or are they enjoying a friendly rapport rendering a composed demeanor. If you observe closely you can actually catch a glimpse of a numerous emotions at one go - the relief of the end of another hard day's work, the joy of going back to friends, family and/or kids, the irritation of the long commute, the baggage of the work being carried home. Its amazing how so many feelings co-exist; right from the joy of trying that new recipe that an office colleague told you about to the dread of going back to oily kitchen shelves and laundry bag full of soiled clothes !

I can see loneliness and companionship, freedom and captivity, vivacity and listlessness; all at one go. There'll be someone sitting at the corner on the window seat, her eyes not winking even once and constantly gazing at the landmarks that rush past. It all reflects on her face, how things in her life have rushed past her  and she has been continuously moving along; not once trying to grab what is supposed to be left behind. There's another one, clutching her bag too tight and sitting cross-legged. She looks everyone with prying eyes and becomes attentive  every-time the train halts. Looks like she fears that she might just miss the right way. She knows she has family and friends and people who care. But she seems hesitant of mingling with crowd, maybe scared of her own vulnerability !

The one standing near the door, enjoying the breeze cutting across her face, letting her hair fly with the wind...she's definitely got something on her mind. I wonder where her thoughts take her ! Is she happy about her new-found freedom and wants to immerse in the moment, not missing one view that rushes past or is it the yearning to go out there, jump and fly and break loose.....I wonder what it is?

The lady who sits across those two young girls listens to their chattering quite amusingly. She smiles, winks, nods her head and then she seems to wander away in her own train of thoughts...Maybe she's reminiscing the days of yore, gossip she shared with her best friend, the little secrets they shared...and the blissful little world free of worries and responsibilities !

And then there's me. I just look around, in search of stories written on faces and in the eyes. There's so much these stories teach me. The value of freedom, the baggage of responsibility, the joy of independence, the comfort of togetherness ! 


  1. Very nice post. But I don't consider train compartment as the 'most unexpected' place for such lessons. In fact, it is the most suitable place where you'll have ample time to practice your lessons on a variety of people.

  2. @chintan: Thanks a lot for the appreciation !

    But u know, like you said that its a place to "practice your lessons"...I guess it turns out to be more like "knowing yourself better" lessons. You see so many faces around, each with a story. And it kind os makes you wonder, "whats my story????"

  3. Absolutely, 'I' is the most focussed person. When we gossip, when we watch a movie or when we just observe people and assume their stories, we try to project ourselves on that story. We compare ourselves with them. If we are better off, it satisfies our ego; if not, we envy them and try to degrade them at least in our own minds, again to satisfy our ego.