It was quite quiet. The house gave a gloomy touch to its occupants. With withering ceiling and chips instead of tiles, it wasn’t the best place to step your feet if you were a hypochondriac. The aroma was a mix of burnt oregano and worn out socks. It gradually accentuated as one followed the intricate network of cobwebs, through the kitchen, right into the bedroom. With a huge pile of random clothes on the master bed, the room, in its entirety, cried out for pest control. It was never the place he imagined he would be living at. But, a pocketful of mediocrity and a hint of evanescent ambition made him an ideal lodger in that house. He enjoyed his spoils more than he could have back home. In the passing years, he set his boundaries himself and created a social circle hard to walk away from. With all the freedom granted, he tried to circumscribe himself in that bubble of happiness which presented itself at first, but the world got to him before he could say yes. Dabbling with emotions while running from the fear of getting attached to the material world, he practiced solitude to streamline his thoughts. Sadly, he felt even more distraught. His idea of complacency wasn’t gelling well with the virtues that he had imbued so far. So, he sat with his legs outstretched to the table as the sun settled for its nap. He was doing nothing in particular. The poor ventilation attributed for tiny sweat beads that formed on his creased forehead. There was a loud thud in the kitchen and he stood abruptly. He followed the voice and found that a plate had just lost its usefulness. As he glanced upon the kitchen slab, he felt repulsed by the unhygienic display of utensils. He was a slob. Nevertheless, you could see him seated in that same brown plastic chair again with the same pose. For an instant, there was a fleeting smile on his lips.

He reminisced the days at home.

He reminisced the carefree tap on his head early in the morning.

He reminisced the effortless breakfast served.

He reminisced the morning radio that played incessant old Bollywood songs.

He reminisced his favorite dish served at proper lunch time.

He reminisced his afternoon snack.

He reminisced his fights with his brother.

He reminisced everything that felt close to being cared for. And then that moment passed. Like all do! He wondered if this is what complacency meant in its true form. He wondered if the world would agree with him. His idea of achievement wasn’t inspired from a movie or bore down by generations of achievements. He never looked ambitiously at anything. He wanted the person standing right and left to him to be happy. Sitting in that room full of bachelor experience, he knew that his road was sketchy. His aspirations might not be in tandem with his companion. But will he still be who he is?

He felt accomplished when he closed curtains that night. For one thing he knew for sure:

It’s just a phase. If chaos was meant to be, who am I to look for complacency!

Kartik Dulloo

Growth Hacker | E&C Engineer | Spell-Bee Runner up | Part Grammar Nazi, Part Grammar Hippy | Failing Anglophile

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