In Chicago, I used to take the blue line to go to downtown. As I waited at the station, I looked at the cars on the highway, which was parallel to the tracks. I liked to watch the cars zooming by. They moved one after another in a disciplined way. The windowpanes of the cars were closed. The driver and the passengers were not comfortable to allow the unruly wind inside the car. The weather of the Chicago had to be blamed in that aspect. It was too cold in the winters and too hot in the summers. The driver and the passengers were accustomed to the unnatural wind circulating inside the car instead of the natural one. I have been inside one of those cars and I heard only the constant hum of the tyres on the road.
I heard the ring, ‘tring tring’ of the bicycle begging the cars and motorcycles for the right of way. I heard a sharp beep of the Yamaha or Suzuki motorcycle that zipped through the cars in the narrow space. I heard the long consistent impatient sound of the car horn, ‘keee keee keeee’, which waited for the cycles and motorcycles to clear from its way. I heard the haughty horn of the black and yellow auto, which did not care about others, cut everybody out and jerked the passengers in the auto from side to side.
I saw the powdery brown colored dust coming off the road. The dust was tasteless. The hot gusts of wind touched my exposed skin, delivered heat to my flesh and made it supple. I smelled dead fish and discovered the source. A lady in blue saree, with a red cloth on top of her head, sat cross-legged in front of a thin transparent sheet on top of which were dead fishes. They looked at all the vehicles on the road with expressionless eyes. An elderly man with a bald head, dressed in white stood before her. They were both haggling over the price of two pomfret, that the lady held in her hand. The dead fish did not care about at what price they were being sold, so they still bore the same expressionless eyes. My senses registered all these actions within a span of few seconds. There was so much to take in.
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