A mole comes calling on a rat that waits impatiently saying to himself “a minute more and I hop on the next train and leave the city”. Gulping down his tears and nibbling at the shreds of a five-year old memory, he waits and minutes slither away like cream. The time comes. Jumping out of her taxi, the mole embraces me from a distance of meters. The rodents feel at pace with the universe. Sun continues its westward trip and both see it dying of curiosity. Sun! you shall miss all that is to follow. Red its face gets and soon it sets. Just like the moon that wishes to stay around longer so that it could witness the much talked about frolic of the matinée. Hehe! you will always miss it moonu!
Abusive they turn and try slapping each other. Only to end up as miniatures of well fed kittens that chase and bite each other after a sumptuous suckle. They race against the world. Having thrown most of their contempt at each other, lightened claws enter a market. Not enough money clipped in their little beaks that they could throw away in the lake of recluse that both forcibly and happily swim each day, each moment. Hunger directs the two to joints where taste is on show. Stories of each other and of others they know of intertwine the chews and the chilly sighs. Food over, next item to be hunted. The plates are picked up, the rat still eyeing the sauce that he could not lick away. “People I tell you and their manners. Why are they so intrusive all the time?”. The rat is taken around like a kid coming to a country fair for the first time. Designs, henna, dresses, utensils and faces. All around them. Two nibblers forget all the world and choose to explore it afresh once again. So much discovery on cold nights in the past and adding up to nil. Rubbing shoulders against the other they walk. A walking ethnography that they do not wish to ever write. Forgetting at times their special distance, they hold hands. The rat sniffs sweat and tries getting closer. The mole pushes him away and delivers a smile that kills.
A stall they choose and take rest. Rat mishandles all the heat of the tea and spills it over the market. The alarmed mole offers her own. The rat refuses. And yet does want to snatch her cup and sip it all. “Why should she be sipping when I am not?”
Beings part. Take opposite routes. Call each other to confirm their trains. The rat comes home to a dirty bed sheet that he throws away. Spreads the green and the saffron and the room resounds with the cries of chicken that Afghani dishes are made of. The windows open to a view of lotus ponds and the wardrobe just begins to reek of roses. The rat infused with a delicate energy runs around hysterically on his computer keyboard. ‘Tik tok kit kot’ the keys go clapping. Scattered words stream away. Wish they reach you O Mole! The rat thinks of the very first fruit that would be slaughtered on the chopper that you bought today. Let me know that Mole!
Dear Molu, can you do something for me? Yes yes! once again.
Please tell your friend life something. She should learn something from rodents. They just nibble it all away and never complain. We will take her along the next time if she wants to! What do you think mole? Should we invite the sulky sun and the moon when we go out next? Send a scribble. I will wait.