Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Sniff.



We don’t know where we belong. So we hide. Hide to save ourselves. Save ourselves before it’s too late.
But for most of us it’s too late, already. There’s no place to go. Nobody’s listening.
We’re all in our private traps, clamped in them, and none of us can ever climb out. 
We scratch and claw, but only at the air, only at each other, and for all of it, we never budge an inch. We’re just trying to find our paths. 

But it’s getting dark already and we’ve hopelessly lost our ground. We don’t have anyone to take our hands and show us the way. 
We are the children who were cast away. We are the children who fell from grace.  

·

It was close to midnight when I finally arrived at the party.  I couldn't decide what to wear. I knew I had to wear something that would make me look a part of the foreign crowd.   I finally picked a safe LBD to go with a new pair of stilettos I had bought recently.
At least some of the Frenchmen would notice my legs in this miniscule black dress, I thought wryly. 
I reached the entrance. A tall redhead in a beautiful gold dress threw out an arm with a long cigarette attached to the end of it. It hit me in the chest and I smelt, rather than felt the burn in my silk dress. She turned around with an apology on her lips. Then she realized she had hit an outsider and muttered something like "You shouldn’t stand so close."
I wanted to make a devastating reply but couldn’t find the words. Her entire group seemed to be sniggering at me. I turned sharply and walked away. The close press of people made a black shield around the entrance. I was tempted to escape, but the arrogance of those long straight backs made me determined to stay, to breach their defenses, and make them notice me- somehow.
People were packed into every corner, flowing forward onto the bar. Men and women stood back to back, knees touching, elbows knotted, heads moving back and forth as they talked.
Music thrust its way through the burr of conversation plugging holes in it with its steady pulse. Tongues and hips moved ceaselessly. The place stank of smoke, sweat and the smell of new leather shoes.
Pretty soon after a few shots of neat Jack, I found myself roped into a group just like everyone else. The pale faces looked at me with glassy, unreal gleeful eyes and thrust a bowl of some white powdery stuff in my face.
“Go on then, have some! It’s really good stuff!”
Not wanting to be ousted, I sniffed some. It hit me hard. I took some more shot my hands up in the air and screamed happily. Everyone cheered.
The conversation moved back and forth between them, sometimes a third or fourth voice screeching in. After each sentence, everyone laughed hysterically. The bowl kept going around too. Five minutes later or maybe it was half an hour, I had laughed so much that my mouth felt stretched and tense. My head felt like a heavy rock. I could feel twin lines forming, linking my mouth to my nose. Everyone in the group had them. I wondered whether it had something to do with the muscles that were used in speaking French.
One story followed another about people who could have been the names of streets for all I knew. In a little while I could no longer tell whether they were talking about people, books or exotic dishes on a menu. I could add no story of my own to the stream of anecdotes that fell in layers upon the conversation, over the laughter that bubbled incessantly beneath it. I remained silent. But nobody seemed to care.
I wanted to breathe in some more of the white stuff. Where was that bowl?
The sudden laughter cut into my reverie. On cue, I joined in.
Found it! I inhaled some more. My head spun with unintelligible happiness. The rush was exhilarating. Lifting. Invigorating. Stimulating. I took some more.
I needed to sleep, but the dress was too itchy. Water. I was thirsty. No water.
I felt myself suddenly start to down in an endless black abyss.

·

A little girl, playing alone with her dolls, her father comes home after a long day at work-
“Daddy!”
“Go away, not now, child. Is your mother home yet?”
“No.”
“Hah. Must be a special assignment with the boss again. That whor- Huh? Stop crying girl. I need some peace in this house. SHUT UP.”
·

A little girl, chest puffed proud with a beautiful self-made drawing in her hands, runs to show it to her mother who just came home.
“What are you doing at home? Shouldn’t you be at Aunty Leela’s house?”
“Maa?” she said, confused.
“I’m busy with this man now. Important work. Office. Go away and play with your dolls and don’t bother me again. Oof. Yeh ladki bhi na. Such a headache.”
The girl looks at the blurry shape of her mother and the stranger as they disappear into the bedroom with unshed tears in her eyes.
·

A little girl, now not so little, in school trying to catch glimpses of a boy fugitively in the school corridors.
“Stop dreaming bitch. He’s out of your league.” A pretty vixen, whispered in her ear menacingly from behind.
Tripped her purposely, and then walked up to the boy linked her arm with his, and laughed blithely with the rest of the kids around.
The girl gets up slowly, silently fighting the urge to burst into tears.
·

She moved to Paris to study.  The girl is happy. She finally has someone who loves her.  Her world is a better place.
She walks up the stairs of her building, softly humming a happy tune, reaches her apartment door, fishes for the keys in her handbag.
The door opens unexpectedly, with her Pierre, wearing only boxers, in an unmistakable embrace with another man.
The girl is speechless. She walks away.

·

Tonight was my night. I was noticed. I was appreciated. I was loved. The white powder is my miracle.
I need some more. More, every day. Every day. Every night.
That is my savior. That is my happy place.
My entire life I’ve been shunned. Ridiculed. Cast away.
If the white powder can take it all away, I want more of it. More and more till my world is exactly like how I’ve always imagined it to be.
·

The girl was found on the footpath the next morning. Dead, from the overdose. Clothes missing. Money gone. And bereft from the dignity the nameless girl had.

Because all our dreams are gone, and all our hopes have faded.
And as sunlight fails, we’ll watch this world slip away.

9 comments:

Talitha said...

*sniff* *sniff*
Cruel world.

Sulky Tofu Girl said...

Troodat.

Your blogs make it a better place, though. :D
Brilliant stuff, Talitha!

Talitha said...

Thankee Thankee,I am truly honoured madame!

Rahil Ansari said...

Intense.

Vivek Mangwani said...

Your style of writing is fantastic, and your matter is filled with substance !
Excellent blog! Kudos!

Raj Chawla said...

Honestly. This is exquisite.
I once knew a girl, she was very close to me, like this. Things didn't really end well with her either.
If she were here, I can promise you this post might have saved her before she was too far gone.
You write really, really well bro. I'm shaken and its not easy to do that at all.
Fucking goosebumps. Not even kidding.
Need more stuff like this soon.

Tangled Tofu said...

Thanks!

Tangled Tofu said...

Thank you so much. :)

Tangled Tofu said...

This means so much to me coming from you Rajma, thanks a ton.
I know how it is. But, well. Things always get better. :)

Posts like these are emotionally draining. But yes, I'll come up with something soon.

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