Thursday, March 5, 2009
Life, Through a McPane.
One of these days I left home for college - only to realise that I had nothing to eat for lunch. Never mind, I said to myself- let me see if some free pizza party comes up as I get done with my classes... Alas, nothing in a mile's radius seemed anything close to one. The entire world seemed to have decided that I should not be fed that afternoon. Being a vegetarian in the United States is somewhat of a challenge- what with the sparsity of choices, and different meanings to the word "vegetarian" itself- viz. vegetables eggs and fish-eaters, or vegetables and egg-eaters, or the traditional vegetable eater alone. That reflects on the definition of foodstuffs in U.S restaurants too- something I had to contend with, and win against- atleast that afternoon.
The cheapest resort for a filling lunch would surely have to be a McDonald's, and it was right across the road. Couldn't get any better, and I had decided. I would go to a 95% non vegetarian eatery and fight my way through to something edible and vegetarian. Settling down with my "vegetarian" milkshake and side salad, I chose to sit at a place where I could have a view of the crossroad leading into the university. What a perfect lunch- salad and milkshake with noone but the signal signs for company.
Settling into the uncomfortable confines of a tacky and stony chair, there were just two things to do- eat, and gaze. The former was taken care of itself by a magnetically empty tummy. Washing down the milkshake cooled my parched tongue. What a blissful feeling. One moment I close my eyes, and open it back again to see a different world- all the noises have stopped., the waitress goes about her work mumbling something to herself. People cross the junction, cars speed by, muffled rays of sunlight knock on the panes, inching to come in. A girl and a guy hold hands and cross the road- understandably they're in love. A Chevrolet pickup swerves to the right only to encounter a girl in pink crossing the street with her cellphone to the ears. Wonder who she is talking to unmindful of a huge car right behind her. A group of my good friends walk across the signal, laughing and joking about with another guy- who, is not really known to be good. Should I go out and tell them he is upto no good? Maybe no., some things in life, make more sense when not revealed- like say, our future. I sit on, as an old man with a dog crosses by. Wonder if he has been abandoned by his family in this senility, or is on just another walk with his dog.
A hundred more things I note, before the 2$ milkshake empties out to a whimper from the straw when I try sipping on it. Should be the best lunch I had in a while, experiencing a different dimension of life- a-la an audience in a play. Would not the world be so interesting if I looked at it like this all through? Away from all the happenings yet into it, happily having the best seat in the theatre as the others involve themselves in worldly pursuits of love, hate and a thousand other things which would amuse me to no end....
Probably for the first time in life, I had experienced what being God feels like.