The lie of knowing you completely

Recently a very old friend of mine was bluffing about some stupid thing and spontaneously I reacted, “Stop bluffing dude, I know you completely.” We often think that we know the person inside out and the same will never fail to surprise us with a very different side which we have never seen before. Even after so many shocks and surprises, we never stop believing in knowing someone completely. But this isn’t only about humans around us.

Today I want to talk about knowing the place completely. I am working at Centre for Development Studies and Activities (CDSA), Pune for past three years and roam around our campus daily. You all might have seen various shades of the campus and its natural beauty through my camera on many social media platforms. I strongly believed that now I know the campus completely. But yesterday, I was working a bit longer than my usual hours to finish a presentation for today.

When I was almost done with the work, I set out to the clubhouse to meet our executive director. As I was passing by one of our classrooms, The reflections of setting sun and the trees on another side of the courtyard on the door panels of classroom caught my eyes. It was a bit dark as the lights in the courtyard were yet to lit up. Orange shades on the horizon creating a silhouette of trees on foreground was such a mesmerizing sight. The setting of door, landing and the steps in front of were giving the cinemascope perspective to the entire scene. I stood by the steps enjoying the scene for a couple of minutes. I clicked a picture on my phone and moved on to the clubhouse for work.

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But while riding back home from the office, I couldn’t ignore the falseness of this feeling about knowing my office place completely. It has been three years, I spend my entire day at this place, still, this campus never fails to provide a new frame of beauty to enjoy every now and then. Even though the features, objects, buildings are the same. I see them every day. But, clouds in the sky, a pouring rain or rays of the setting sun, compels me to watch and enjoy the scene created by nature. Today I have come to terms with the fact that the feeling of knowing someone or something completely is just an illusion.

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It was an easy day for me, set routine continued till that moment. Exactly at the time of my daily evening coffee, it happened. It made me break my routine and go out of the way. It was a day of awakening. I was following this routine ever since I joined ‘Globalcorpo’ ten years before. I dedicated most of my time to my work and it paid off. In last ten years, I rose in rank and was sitting in General Manager’s cabin, refurbished as per my taste.

When I look back, I found those days very robotic. Even though responsibilities changed, it was same programmed routine for years. I got absorbed in ‘Globalcorpo’ through campus selection in last year of my graduation. I had a job in hand even before my degree. That day I was so happy but so lonely. There was not a soul around me to share my joy. I was introvert since I can remember. I never knew my parents, was not able to make any friends. I got bullied in school. I was getting high on anger and I diverted that to my studies and worked hard. That hardship got paid off that day.

On the joining day of this new job, one routine got replaced by other and I kept myself busy in work. I was famous as a workaholic in the office. On that day, I was busy in various routine meetings about managing my unit of the highly reputed multinational company. But every day I made sure that I will have my coffee break by the large window exactly at the same time. This coffee break used to be my stress-buster. My secretary brought my coffee in my cabin and returned to her desk. I was sitting in my window, looking down on the road. I was about to take the first sip, and Bang!!!!! Followed by the ear-tearing scratching sound of breaks. It was so sudden and swift many of them could not even react to what was happening. I froze. I froze in a shock.

In a flash, it was over for them. All I can feel was the numb silence, that eternal vacuum. All the red gore on the road, increasing the circle of the crowd, restless honking of ruthless commuters on the road was getting blur. My brain was not ready to process anything.

Right in front of my eyes, the young jovial couple lost their lives in a fraction of a second. And I was sitting in my air conditioned office, 40-50 feet above all. That evening changed my perception of this height. Earlier when I used to look down on the road, I used feel supremacy. But that day, I was just stunned. Even for realising my meagreness in front of the harsh reality of death I needed some time. It took me a couple of days to digest happenings of that evening.

That day, I experienced the uncertainty which changed my entire view towards the life. For the first time in my life, I was breaking the walls I built around me. First time I felt the urge to let someone in, I desired to share my joy with someone. I wanted to make others happy. After years, I strongly felt the need of a friend. One fine day, I took the decision. I packed my bags and left everything behind and set out for finding my soul. I went on the journey of finding my joy. I worked with many organizations one after another. I joined my hands with people who was working to make this earth greener, I tried my skills of bamboo artwork with tribes of North Eastern Indians. And finally, I am settled with these bunch of kids in a remote area in southern Maharashtra.

I joined the NGO working for educating the kids in the rural area. And finally, here I found my passion. Today you see me so lively, enthusiastic and happy to help in this remote village. It’s all because of that one helpless moment when I was looking down at his ruthless and cruel deed. I live in this remote village in Maharashtra, trying to teach these kids. But many times these tribal people amaze me in their unique perspective about some particular event. We have so much fun in our teaching and learning activities. Our roles get exchanged many times. We roam around the jungles learning nature’s ways. We observe wildlife. Enjoy fresh produce we grow in our small school backyard. Today I enjoy my new life, taught by this loving nature. For us, every day is a celebration. A celebration of life, a celebration of joy…

Image credit : Tattoo Tribes

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