A JOURNEY WITH NO DESTINY

paul prakash My friends always used to say that my story deserves to be a book or  a movie. They actually told that for fun but I took it seriously. I was looking for the most interesting part of my life to write an article. I suppose that most of you people have a question in your head: “What would it be like when we run away from home?” So, here I am to say that I’ve experienced the answer of this question.

The intro goes like this: The first thing I hated in my life is the education system. I hated it when parents asked me about marks, not the subject. I still remember the people who asked my percentage. I cant even remember at least one person who asked me what I know in the subject. Eventually I started hating to stay at my home. I felt like getting rid of this, wanted to get out of that place. I didn’t want to stay at home anymore. I was waiting for right time, planned already.

All set for the start:

That was Sunday morning, around 11 AM. Only my sister is at home with me. She gave me a glass of milk to drink, I was drinking, and in the meanwhile, I was writing ‘sorry’ in a book several times. I also wrote a note addressing my first crush, that I’ll miss her a lot and then put it in my pocket. Glass empty, and I was waiting for the right moment. I went out casually, took my bicycle and said, “I’ll just go hang out with friends and come back for lunch.” I left, but didn’t come back on that day.

  A journey with no destiny

I already had a plan to get out of home, but never thought of where to go. I said to myself, “I’ll go anywhere the roads lead me, but first I have to get rid of this house.” I finally got out of home that day. But the most interesting thing is that I didn’t have a rupee in my pocket on that day. I was about 14 years old when all this happened. I started to follow the traffic. Finally I was on the highway. I was cycling for hours. I thought of ending the journey here for this day and look for some shelter. After some time I happened to see a board, Bharat Heavy Electrical Limited(BHEL) written on it. I thought it was some electrical industrial area, where they produce electricity. Then I saw traffic getting in. I found it interesting and went inside. It was a community. I kept on cycling but I was not able to find anything hopeful. I thought of getting out of that place, but don’t know why, I was stuck inside for hours. I wasted about 3 hours searching for exit. Don’t know what made me stuck inside for so long, what’s in BHEL that stopped me for so long? Wait for the answer. Well, after three hours, I got outside. I had excitement of freedom on one side, fear of future on the other side. Above all, I was tired and thirsty. I stopped and asked for water here and there. Some of them treated me like a beggar. That hurt.

Dark and dangerous:

It was already so dark, large trucks rushing on roads with great speed. Some of the drivers are drunk. I was afraid, but continued. As I went on, I saw people sitting in different cabins, the trucks stopped by them, and these people take money from the drivers and open the gate. I didn’t know what it was, thought that these people are checking the trucks. I stopped there and watched all these things, and a man came to me and asked what I wanted. I left he place immediately without answering him. I wanted to know where I was. I looked for the name of area on shop’s banners or boards, or whatever they call them. Finally I got to know that I was in Patancheru. I felt like heard this name somewhere. That familiarity made me feel like I can be easily caught if I stay there, so I moved forward. And I started again from there and kept cycling, After reaching some distance, there were no on the road, I couldn’t see anything, it was a national highway. Something told me it was not safe when it’s dark. So I thought of sleeping somewhere at the market place.

Was that a kidnap?

All the day away from home, it was so easy to spend. Now I need some shade to sleep. I don’t know where I can. Finally I found a place, parked the cycle on the other side of the road and slept on a platform before a shop. After some time a guy came to me in the middle of the night and woke me up. He asked me who I was and said, “It’s not safe here; the police may come here on patrol. I’ll show you a place, you can sleep there.” I had no other way but just trusting him. So I went with him and he gave me two options. One: abandoned temple, two: abandoned home. The temple was so terrific, so I chose the house. He checked all my pockets before leaving, but he found nothing with me. May be he supposed that I’ll carry money with me and thought of grabbing them from me. He said that he’ll bring me something to eat and went away, but didn’t return for so long. I thought something may be wrong with that place. He might be planning something. How can a man in the middle of night promise me that he’ll bring food for me at that time? Why will he check the pockets? All these questions made me flee that place again.

I got my first job:

Finally came to a closed hotel and tried to sleep on a bench. A man came and asked me who I was. Then I created a fake character and added a story to it. He asked me if I could work in their hotel, then I said yes. He took me to his home and I slept there that night finally. They gave me a blanket and let me sleep with the family. On the next morning they took me to their hotel and I started working for them. I didn’t know what I was doing, but finally I ended up here. I was not able to focus on the work, and people saw my strange behaviour and thought that I had some mental problem. I remember the moment when they looked at me strangely. Regular costumers of the hotel were asking the supervisor who I was. He kept saying that I lost the way and ended up there. But I was not satisfied with it. I didn’t come this far to clean tables.

Home, sweet home:

It’s the evening on the same day, and I still remember the moment when I was sitting on a bench and started thinking what to do next, suddenly all my past came into my mind, all at a time. I broke down and started crying inside. Immediately I took out the money a costumer gave me as a tip, went to the payphone and called my dad. Dad asked me whether I know the place but I don’t even know name of the place. Finally I saw boards on the shops and learned that I was in Sangareddy. Finally, I spoke to dad and called him to pick me up. That moment was inexpressible. Whatever you do, wherever you go, home is home. By the time I cut the call, I don’t even know where they came from, the police surrounded me. They took me to the police station and let me sit there until my parents come to take me. I waited for 3 hours may be, then my dad came to me. Sorry, I can’t explain that moment in words. I leave it to your imaginations. I saw his eyes as red as blood. That’s the only thing that I remember right now. They took me back home on the bike, and my cycle was kept in the police station. I’m home finally.

Impact of the journey at school:

I got to know what happened after I went missing at home. Parents went to school and inquired of my friends about my whereabouts. And the most embarrassing thing is that my mother told principal that I ran away because the homework was too hard for me. School staff started showing pity on me and they never punished me for my pending works thereafter. Anyway, thanks to mom!

I DISCOVERED MYSELF

I didn’t know what I was doing until I ended up right where I’ve started. Anyways, I learnt many things in my journey. All that I’ve noticed is that, everyone followed things which their ancestors or seniors set before them. They got used to the rules of ancestors. Most of them are looking at what education has brought into existence, I appreciate it. But they are comparing education of those days to education system of this generation. They got used to the definitions of seniors, they got used to the rules set by ancestors. That is why I’ve said earlier that you should stop following definitions and start following opinions in the article Bring out the hidden treasures. This is when I thought, “I cant be like everyone. If I was like everyone, what’s the meaning of my existence?” I’ve decided to choose my own way. I discovered myself.

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