I wish I had not checked in my camera. I’m sitting in the airport and writing this. I have landed up early and have to hang around. I settled on the restaurant at the higher level, so that I could see the runaway and possibly relax.
* * *
The clouds form different patterns; you wouldn’t see sharing the same sky usually. Today it’s pristine. Long thin dark clouds in the foreground of lighter fatter clouds. A light hue of saffron infecting the sky. The clouds tell a story. A story of inevitable rain. You can sense the rain coming soon. But not now. Now, the clouds share the same space. Thin clouds and fat clouds. White clouds and dark clouds. Sharing the same sky.
The wind creating tremors in little puddles of water on the terrace. Like a warning of the rain to come. There are no birds in the sky. Another warning?
In the distance the city buzzes. But from here it is still. Only the leaves move. And the water in the puddle. The wind buzzes. The sky sizzles. And everything is still.
Inside, a man, engrossed in his book. Another taken in by the television. Another, with his work. The waiter clearing the table, careful not to let anything fall.
The waiter has cleared the table of the man watching the television, who is sitting at the table next to the man engrossed in his work, who is sitting across from the man who is reading. On the table next to him, there is a glass. The glass is almost empty. But for a few cubes of ice, settled around a white straw, in the remains of lemon ice tea. The reflection in the glass is white, with black specks moving in the background. The black specs are these words. Beyond these words is the other glass, that separates the beauty outside from the people inside.
The shared sky, the buzzing city that is still, the words being written, the empty glass of lemon ice tea and the room with the people. Juxtaposed. Distanced but juxtaposed. A strange combination. All caught in the mirror across the room, together.
I stare at the mirror and I stare at this screen. I wish I had not checked in my camera.