Thursday, July 06, 2006

Running Late

She’s late.
She grabs her bag, haphazardly throwing in all she needs. Wallet. Book. Scribbling paper. Pen.
She steals a glance at the clock. Shit! She’s going to miss the bus.

Eight minutes left.

She gulps down her tea. It’s burning hot. It scalds her throat as it pours in.
She needs a whole minute to put out the burning flames in her throat.
She has no time for this!
She slips on her Osho chappals. And hurries out.

Six minutes left.

She calls for the elevator. Damn! Where is it?
Forget it. She runs down the stairs and rushes out.
She glares at her watch. It’s hard to tell the time when you’re on a trot.
The hands keep jumping nervously around the dial. Is it 8:10? Is it 8:12?

Five minutes left.

The sun is trailing her.
Her shadow is at her tail, goading her on.
The sparrows chipper loudly, taking bets on her chances.
The old grey crow thinks she’ll make it.
The pigeon says she won’t.

Four minutes left.

Cars pass her in slow motion.
So do people talking their morning stroll.
The world moves on at a lazy pace, mocking her urgency.

She doesn’t notice the wrinkled hawker coming from the other side.
He spreads his cart carelessly in front of her.
She halts.
Ouch! Her shadow painfully bumps into her.
She really doesn’t have the time for this!
Panic is setting in.

Two minutes left.

She brushes the cart out of her way.
And then she smiles for the first time today.
She can see the bus now.
She is almost there…

She smoothens her hair.
She straightens her kurta.

One minute left.

She steps into the bus.
There he is.
His fingers are drumming a panicked beat on his laptop.
Where is she?

And then he sees her.
She smiles.
He smiles.

The engine roars to life.


cutting said...

wow! i actually held my breath. nice nice nice.

Neha said...


:) thank you