There were gaping holes on both sides of him. There was also something about that emptiness that haunted him too badly to want to continue with his daily routine.
Mr Singh and Mr Malhotra.Both victims of age.And disease.And he knew it was not long before he too would walk the same path.
And yet, today here he was, at the foot of his building, laughing his guts out.Loudly.
“Fantasy Laughter club”, he thought. “What a name! Fantastic.All I need is a pin and a name tag.”
He looked around with quiet amusement.A pot-bellied gujju fellow he barely knew,who had just joined the club a few days back was laughing out the loudest.A few ladies trying hard to match the volume with their shrill laughter, but only managing to add to the general cacophony.
A hundred windows opened out to them, each cursing the club for the club’s early morning incursion into their precious hours of sleep.And a few kids rushing around,on cycles, on skates, on rubber shoes,each pushed by an inner need to….
To what exactly?He didn’t know.But he wished he did.
“Mr Purushottam, what’s the matter? Why aren’t you laughing?” asked the young man at the head of the group.
“I’m not happy”, came the reply.And it surprised him.He didn’t know he was capable of such lucidity. “None of us are.We only laugh because it beats stress.”
And finally, it hit him. His laughter had now become part of his daily monotony.