In spite of the chilly weather, I was soaked in sweat. I had just completed my weekly quota of running (though this is not the word that will come to your mind if you happen to be in the jogging park and see kids half my height and god knows what part of my age speeding past me). My body was emitting hot vapors, which only I could feel. Too exhausted to take a napkin out of my pocket, I cleaned the sweat on the brow with my shirt sleeve. I stepped off the cement jogging track on to the grass lawn so as to stretch myself and with it finish my weekly ritual. I always looked upon this jogging park with people, and in particular the oval shaped lawn as a green oasis in a concrete desert. With the kind of tall sky scrapers that surround the park, I should probably stick to the common usage of ‘concrete Jungle’ but again from where I am stationed, I can hardly see any life in them, its only closed windows and LG air conditioners that catch my eye when ever I lift my head to exercise neck. These sky scrapers surrounding the park, eleven and still counting in number, are very close to each other and almost look like a cricket team in hurdle. At twilight they even make me feel claustrophobic.
The abundant supply of water from the past week’s rain turned every plant in the park lush green and I would have almost missed noticing it but for the abnormal thickness of grass under my feet. Once I am on to the grass plot, I tried to persuade different parts of my body to stretch and after fifteen minutes, satisfied with the number of them that listened to me and ignoring those that didn’t, I decided to head back. I started walking slowly but steadily towards the exit, maneuvering through the traffic (read joggers) that has grown exponentially as the evening progressed.
I hardly covered a couple of meters and it suddenly grew very dark, as if somebody has turned down the brightness knob. As a mocking imitation of life outside the park, rain drops started falling hurriedly and noisily on to the leaves. All of a sudden walkers started jogging, joggers started running and runners started disappearing and in no time the track looked almost empty. Blame it on the exhausted body or re-kindling of childhood fantasy, I further slowed my pace. All those fanatic pleas asking my mom to let me out into the rain quickly crossed my mind. The breeze picked up and rain drops began to ‘Hit’ my face. I started to enjoy the cold raindrops falling on to my heated body. I didn’t feel the chill, I didn’t fear my health, all I felt is a momentary bliss. Instinctively I stretched my hands even risking the possibility of looking like a heroine in rain song. And then all of a sudden, just when I was starting to soak in the moment, the rain stopped. More than disappointment, I felt cheated. There were countless times, when I wished it wouldn’t rain and it rained and now as if to summarize the irony that life is - the rain stopped just when I wanted it to go on. Not left with a choice and with a feeling bordering that of dejection, I quickened my pace and headed in the direction of the exit.