Thursday, July 20, 2017


By Sunaina Patnaik at Thursday, July 20, 2017
We both were used to the clamour of the night clubs. Stuck in a camp amidst hills where even silence refused to reach us, we were forced to make strained conversations. Back in the city, we never found it difficult to speak our guts out, but here, with the endless sky and the shining stars in the night, we were under pressure to make meaningful conversations. Talk about the change of scene and all that!

Despite the change of scene, we still had to follow the custom where I initiated the conversation, and him taking the lead. Small talk wasn't really our forte, but I began with one.

"Don't you think it would have been nicer if the colour of our sleeping bags matched that of our tent?"
"Seriously, is that what's running in your head?"
"I mean it would have at least made for a good Instagram picture. Don't you think so?"
"Of course not! Anyway, should we set up the campfire?"
"What? No!"
"But it's getting colder."
"But we won't see the stars if we have the fire."
"Alright, what do you want to do then?"
"We could talk."
"Yeah, we could."
"What do you want to talk?"
"Anything you like."
"Anything? Great!"

Without continuing the conversation any further, I looked at him. He was struggling to put things in an order. He never liked any mess just the way he didn't know how to make one. His nose flared a bit in the air as he tried to keep the tent unkempt and his cheeks turned red when he realized I was staring at him.

And then, I started again.

"Did you ever love someone so much that it pained each time you looked at them smile?"
"No, why do you ask?"
"Just curious."
"Did you?"
"Yeah, maybe."
"I never really gave it much of a thought, but I guess the ones who aren't born out of love crave love a tad bit more than the others."
"Or it's just that you're crazy."
"That too!"
"No, it's just that."

We ended our conversation with just that. I curled into his arms and fell asleep looking at the stars as he ran his fingers through my hair. Sometimes, silence says a lot more than words. If only we hear them.



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