i was on my way to work. it was a rainy day, but the sort of rainy day where it'd pour and then stop while the sun would shine through for like a minute before it started pouring again.
i was in an air-conditioned bus. it was the bottom deck of a red double decker bus, with very limited seating (a row of seats along the sides, and that's it). i was standing, as were most of the other passengers. the bus was quite full.
there was a guy standing near me, well built, with close cropped hair, slightly taller than me, and wearing rimless glasses. he bore an uncanny resemblance to abhishek. i was startled for a second, but then i realized he obviously wasn't abhishek as i could see the differences. plus, of course, abhishek has been dead over a year now.
but for some reason, i thought, let's freak the guy out, by pretending i think he's my dead friend.
i caught him glancing at me, and i said: "dude... abhi... what's up!"
the guy looked a little startled, but then replied, in abhi's voice: "kris! how've you been man... it's been a while! are you on your way to work?"
and i almost jumped out of my skin.
the guy started chuckling, and that's when i realized, his mouth was shut and his lips weren't moving.
and i said back "abhi, what's this?"
and then i realize i'm not actually moving my own lips, it's just a conversation i'm having in my head. but i can hear my voice, and it seems real.
the guy was looking very confused by then, and i realized it was probably because i was staring at him so intently.
so i said "sorry man, thought you were an old friend. are you abhishek by any chance?" and this time i could feel the words escape my mouth.
the guy said no, and i decided to move away towards the front of the bus.
i could hear abhishek chuckling again and say "scared you, didn't i?"
by then i had moved near the front of the bus (near the door). the sun was out again. and i was like damn... i was hoping for major rain.
but then i realized that i had forgotten my raincoat at home.
and then i realized that i had intended to wear my raincoat and bike to work.
just then, the bus stopped. some people got out, others got in. the bus design was quite funny. the part near the door was actually an elevator to the upper deck, which opened outside as well as onto the bus. the door opened and closed. some people, for some reason, decided to stand in the elevator itself. i was thinking to myself how weird that was, when a cyclist crossed the road in front of the bus and forced it to brake hard and stop.
that's when i recalled i had no reason to be in the bus as i was planning to bike to work. so i asked the bus driver to open the doors, and i got out while he was waiting for the cyclist to get out of the way.
i was on borivali SV road, near kora kendra, except that there was a petrol pump and mall nearby.
i started walking briskly back towards where i usually park my bike. but then i realized i have been in the bus longer than just one stop, and i also don't remember parking my bike there today.
i started thinking back: did i park my bike at the other usual spot (further away)? but i don't remember walking from that parking spot to the bus stand. in fact, i don't remember where i caught the bus from. everything stopped making sense.
in the distance, i saw a mountainside, covered with patches of clouds. i thought, this would be a lovely photo if it wasn't for all these buildings and traffic.
i started running instead of walking. and the buildings ended, the traffic ended, and i was suddenly running alone along the same road, but which was now going over a gently sloping hill.
and that's when i realized: it's a dream.
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