Its late evening. I am inside a bus, half asleep. When did I get into it? Where am I traveling to? Are these questions so very important? No, I will search for those answers when I wake up fully. The bus stopped. The electronic display sign on the bus reads "Stop Requested". A fat old man wearing a green t-shirt carries his bag and gets down. I hate these fat people, they take so much time to even get down from the bus, I crib. I cannot sleep if the bus is not moving. I curse the old man for spoiling my sleep and wake up fully.
I look outside. All I can see is a broad, long road (may be 12 lanes) and no other traffic, I love it. Feels so peaceful. Why did the old man get down here? I dont see any bus stops here. The sky seems to have that bluish gray effect on the whole place. Is it the effect of the sky? Or the blue cooling paper on the window? The land on either side of the road looks barren and I dont see any other persons there.
The light is very dim inside the bus, I can hardly see any other passengers. The electronic display is now showing the date and its moving pretty fast. Is it really the date or there is some problem with the display? Who cares, these are anyway fancy stuffs. All I care is that I have got an isolated window seat and the air conditioning is cool, at a very optimal level. I see a tree outside for the very first time. An old man who is wearing a hat is playing a clarinet. A few minutes later, I see a huge crowd of foreigners. They look very European - may be Austrian or something.
The journey is quite comfortable, but at one moment I have the sudden urge to get down from the bus. I raise my hand to pull the string for stop request. I suddenly remember the old man who got down. I had almost overlooked the words "BOB" on his t-shirt! Bob. Bob Woolmer! I freeze. Things become very clear now. The old man near the tree was O P Nayyar. The crowd I saw may be the ones who got killed in the concentration camps or something. I hear the sound "ting" and the electronic display reads "Stop Requested". Did somebody else request for a stop? Or did I pull the string in panic?
I wake up, sweating profusely. Its 4.13 am. It takes me more than 60 seconds to realize that I am inside a tent in the jungle. I remember coming here for a trek this morning. Uff, I take a deep breath. I come out of the tent. The camp fire is off. I hear a lion roar!
(Before anyone starts psychoanalyzing me, let me make it very clear - I did not get this dream. Its just an idea I got when I was traveling by bus yesterday!)
P.S : As I finish writing this, I realize that there are at least 4 inspirations for this - one, that nice forwarded story called 'Appraisal'; two, the short film I saw called 'the void'; three, Ingmar Bergman movies, of course; four, a mythological story called 'Lavana' I had read last year!