A World of Yellow
We were crossing the railway junction, when someone called from behind, “Guys, make it fast, the bars will be down...” and rushed away. My friend grasped my hand and pulled me along with her, not realizing that I wanted to savour every bit of that moment. Soon, we were on the streets again. I looked at her face trying to understand whether she was irritated, as she gestured with her eyebrows towards an isolated area filled with greenery. “Our playground.”, she said. The common view of Indian parks - young boys in shorts playing football and a few girls playing cricket at one side of the ground - all in a carefree mood.
Soon, she guided me through a narrow colony. When we came out into the broad roads, it was all peaceful. We left three grey buildings on our left and stood facing the next -- a World of Yellow. The yellow walls have been tanned and had occasional broken areas and the building looked quite old - not for me, it was my dreamland. I could not believe that I was standing so close to a palace. However, in reality, i was too far indeed, because I knew that I couldn’t ring the bell.
My friend stalked the road, I just stood and kept looking. Slowly, I went a step back and peeped in through the grills. Three windows were open. I was afraid someone would notice us there, but from somewhere inside, I wished somebody would.
It was 3 o’clock in the afternoon. Everything was too much silent as if to let me imagine myself a year ago, returning home along the highways of Kolkata, beaming to myself. My peers knew that I had met him during the coaching classes once again. As I realized that he had no idea that I was standing below his house, my heart pushed me ahead, but I stopped myself - I knew I could not ring the bell.
Gusts of cold air kept getting stronger and more dangerous. We needed to leave. I turned around slowly with my heart throbbing, trying its best to pull me back, as my friend hurried and kept calling me. I took a last turn near the corner to have a look at the house. I saw a middle-aged person nearby, staring at us - the only human witness to maybe the last Hello and the last Goodbye.