One fine morning, like any other day, I began my day waiting for a city service bus at the bus stop. After waiting for couple of minutes, I boarded a bus to reach my workplace which is about an hour away from my residing place. Having gotten into a pretty crowded bus, I somehow managed to find a little place to stand, though uncomfortably. Bus continued through its way like a snail, moving bumper to bumper which is an everyday scene in our busy and crowded ‘Namma Bengaluru’.
A passenger was seated comfortably on a seat adjacent to me whom I envied for a moment. Fortunately, soon I found vacating her seat which I caught eagerly like an eagle catching its prey. Though, I had just crossed two stops, it felt like I was standing since ages in those long stretches of still vehicles waiting for those traffic signals to turn green. Having found a seat, I sat and began to enjoy with great relief to my tired legs.
Like every other day, I took a novel out from my bag and started to read. I usually prefer to use travel time to read to avoid boredom and frustration caused by traffic jams. As I continued reading, a man appeared in the scene standing next to my seat and handed a bag over to me. Handing over their luggage to people who are seated is common in Bengaluru so that they can stand freely in crowded buses.
Slowly, I found this man standing next to me leaning towards my seat which made it difficult for me to sit. Uncomfortable feeling started to build up in me and I started making faces to show my irritation but I never looked up at him. Soon I realized that it was not just me who had a feeling of irritation and a bit of anger too but people standing around that eccentric man too shared the same feelings. This man was annoying almost everybody in the bus with some strange sounds which was literally noise for me.
That morning’s center of attraction, a middle-aged man’s notorious act continued for a long time yelling at people, making alien sounds. By the time, we reached close to my destination with just two stops away from my workplace, a lady seated next to me vacated her seat. Unfortunately, I found this man finding his way to the vacant seat next to me. Having seated comfortably, he made peculiar action and sound at me and that’s when for the first time I lifted up my head to look at him to understand what this man is up to. To my shock and surprise, I found that this man is mute yet trying to talk to every creature in the bus. Coming into my senses, I understood through his actions that he was asking me for time. I found myself stuck with words in my throat with practically no words escaping my mouth, I just showed him my watch with a smile. After answering his query, he was ready to put forth his next question to continue the conversation which I answered with smile and a nod but not a single word. As I had reached my destination and got up to alight, he bid me farewell with an enthusiastic and a million-dollar smile. In turn, I threw my poor smile at him and nodded my head in reply to his wishes for the day. After alighting, I stood at the platform turning back again and again to look at this man and found that he was eagerly waiting for his meeting with another stranger.
Though, my meeting with this man was just for few minutes, he had left me with awakening thoughts. For the rest of the day, I kept wondering who is indeed MUTE. What had sounded like a noise to me a few minutes ago, had turned zealous and anger faded. In this fast and busy life where we are isolating ourselves from our own people, I found this Archangel reminding us with our extra-ordinary quality of SPEECH and it hit over my head reminding me to use it before it turns vestige.