I have walked beneath the blue skiesI have wandered alone on the mowed green grass,
I have hiked the length and breadth of the snow laden mountains,
I have camped for the starry nights,
I have made friends out of strangers,
as my friends traveled virtually across the seven oceans for me.
I have slept with frogs jumping all over me,
And sailed with the dolphins near me
I have drank the most atrocious tasting wine on the road,
Along with hot Maggi, in tow,
I have woken up to the coldest sunrises,
While chasing the most romantic sunsets
And then something happened.
The streets thundered,
The skies turned somber,
People flung into chaos,
Little kids dropped down one by one,
The innocent smiles turned teary,
The toothless smiles befuddled,
The marching band cease to play,
The birds refused to fly,
The guns rode the street,
Terror looted the homes.
I was left all alone,
Not knowing what to do, where to go.
Suddenly someone stopped me in the streets,
Behind a veil, the voice said- “Are you lost? Because I am too! Will you be with me and take me home?”
“Who are you?” I asked instinctively, scared, ready to shoot the voice with my prejudice, bias and fear.
“I was a happy traveling girl. I roamed the streets of this country and wandered aimlessly with my dreams held tight. The people I met loved me, shared my food, as they rested with their caravans and backpacks. And now, people refused to acknowledge me. They refuse to smile with me. They think, I am a bullet stewed with hate.”
As I heard her, tears rolled down my cheeks. My heart pounded and words left me. I had known her. She was a mirror reflection.
Yes, she is the happy traveling girl. The happy traveling girl, I had crossed many a times, late night at the airport lounge,
The Happy Traveling Girl, I had shared my meals on the world’s longest train journey.
My hopes glimmered, I shimmered.
In a world of despair, I had found my lost friend.
A friend, who just like you and me . Who is she?
She is a ‘Happy Traveling Girl.’
Note: In the recent days, there have been news report pouring in from different parts of the world. A bus explosion, or an airport blast. The city of love tearing apart, or the Arabic land being burned down. War, terrorism and pain everywhere. My eyes are wet, my heart sinks in. We cannot bring the lost souls back. But we can definitely regard their souls by doing the best we can. Say no to fear, say no to terror, say no to war. Let’s stand united. Don’t be afraid of the soul in front of you. The soul is as parched as you. We are all traveling through this world and we return back home, once our visa is up. Let’s return to our homes respectfully, let the God, Ram, Allah or nature (whoever you worship know)- you have been kind to one and all. Peace!