Friday, November 9, 2012

Johnny ‘Walk’-er!

I had a knee meniscus injury for the last 5 years. I love walking and exploring places, but I could not walk because of the pain. But this May, I had a surgery. We were all very scared that will my foot be normal ever again. My mother is not that religious but she took a vow in some temple in Haridwar, that if I can normally again she would come back to the temple. That was the first time I saw my mother something like that. I was moved.
I came back to Mumbai after the surgery. I could walk with some problem inside my knee in the beginning. As time passed, it started becoming normal again. And I could walk again…climb stairs again at the station…pretty much the way I did before.
I started exploring places again, by walk. My doctor had told me to walk as much as I could, as that was considered good for a meniscal injury. So I almost gave up taking rickshaws just for the joy of walking and exploration. I shifted to this place (4 bungalows) which is quite close to my office. It takes no time if I take a rickshaw, but it takes 20 minutes to walk to the office.
I have this mall which is pretty close to my place too, rickshaw-wise. It takes 15 minutes on the rickshaw, but when I walk I take a short-cut, which makes it 10 minutes. But I have always preferred walking, but you enjoy the journey only when you walk.
Even a super-fast city like Bombay becomes slow when you walk and watch it go on. In Bombay, there are people who walk on the footpath at an unidentified pace, always in a hurry. I am sure you never notice such people when you are in any vehicle.
Today a friend of mine dropped me at Juhu circle and told me to get a rickshaw to home. I am sure the rickshaw would have taken me back home in 10 minutes. But I chose to walk and look around the way.
The footpath was full of poor people we usually see, but I noticed a couple watching TV on a small laptop. They were poor, very poor but I still wonder how could  they manage that little laptop!
Marshall McLuhan was right when he said “ Medium is the message!”. Whenever I would ask people for my place (Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, 4 bungalows), they would direct me to the place where I can get a bus or an auto to my destination. I had to ask them again saying that I wanted to walk. They gave me a ‘strange’ look. But I continued walking!
 I reached home, slightly late but not to miss the images and visuals I caught on my way. I sat down at a chai-wala and made a note of the ‘stories’ happening around me. Content and happy!
I am happy that I can walk again and it is helping. This is always a nice thing to do, just to explore stuff around. And yes, last week my mother went back to that temple in Haridwar, as she had promised. Content, she is too :)

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