There is something inherently romantic about buildings in construction, or buildings in general. While I sit in one right now I feel it as a powerhouse of memories, the home I live in, it’s every wall and bricks that compose it are familiar companions. It seems they will know more than any other the tragedies of my life. These walls constitute my life, and ensconced in it is my sense of security.
While I sit here I imagine the labours which lived here, constructing this one brick at a time. They may have felt the dauntless permanence of this building too. That is a thing about buildings, they make you their own and you almost forget that this too shall pass. But what about the weeds and animals which resided on the same piece of land, 10 or maybe 100 years ago? How was this same piece of land then, which I call my own now?
It will cease to be mine once I leave it, some other people will come to weave their own stories, with their own nuances. We’ll have so much in common, but we will never know each other. We touch so many lives unknowingly, following patterns so many people had in past. We are so many versions of one true self.
It is overwhelming to think that the current inhabitants never know fully the story of the place they live in, while these walls know everything about them. Buildings are scarred with memories of past, the soil echoes the sound of thousand demises.
While I was walking towards the mall a few days ago, I saw sights which made me question our existence and transience of life all over again. There were people living beside piles of garbage, dog and man alike. It seems that when you reach the level of complete destitution, man and animal tread on same level. There was a familiarity in their exchange, a knowing in their eyes. I passed right through their home, on my both sides cots, and scattered remains of a hopeless existence- broken combs, old thrown away pieces they found from the garbage which they clean and sell, and bug infested blankets.
I passed through their whole life in a maximum of 5 seconds. The privacy of knowing is gone, there are no walls and your penury is on display while self respect is nowhere to be found.
Sylvia, it reminded me of how all of us are just travellers, just passing through.
It scares me because we take ourselves so seriously, we hoard so much while there is so much to give.