I felt very close to the rain today. I don’t like to get drenched in a downpour. Or to get damp in a drizzle. As a child, I used to sit at the edge of the veranda and watch the rain play its games. I did that again today after a long, long time.
The clouds gave way to a slight drizzle and eventually burst into an angry downpour. I slumped into the swing chair in the veranda and grinned as the wind lead the stream of raindrops as part of their lovely waltz. I instinctively stretched out my leg to the rain in the hope that nature’s playfulness on show rubs onto me.
It did; I felt calm, devoid of the stress that I had become so habitual to recently. I experienced a general sense of clarity within, but I wasn’t thinking about anything specific. A numbness of mind that moves you meaningfully? I wish I could better word this paradox.
My recent lifestyle of the bustling metropolis had made me ignorant. When it rained, I hide behind glass with the raindrops furiously colliding against it. But then they dejectedly glided down. Not today. I let them touch me, heal me today.
I went casual shopping today. I didn’t dress up as I would normally do whenever I go out in my hometown. How I look as I go outside does not matter to me much these days. Anyway, all I had to shop for was some groceries and a few ointments.
The way I looked today was fine for the larger town I have settled in. Rather the shabbier I dress up, greater the respect I gain from a store owner. Or so I believe. This theory fails royally in my comparatively smaller hometown.
As expected, I was consciously ignored by the store owners and the attendants. I, then, asked for a specific item, a Himalaya – a well-known Indian brand – face cream. I returned the Himalaya face gel asking for the cream variant. And it is then that they called me “sir”.
This incident repeated itself at another store. My shabby attire made everyone attending in the store to ignore me. I then asked for a lip balm of from Nivea. I returned the strawberry flavoured one he hesitantly handed me and asked for a variant that’s especially for men. It is then that they called me “sir”.
I have realized over the years (and from the sheer amount of effort my dad puts in dressing up just to go out of the main door) that it matters here how you present yourself outside – especially in shops as a customer. However, if a shabby looking attire makes the store owners and attendants ignore you, the specificity of your wants makes you special.