Moving in the other direction

Kalasipalayam is undoubtedly one of the filthiest localities in Bangalore. It’s also a transport hub and several private bust operators have their office here.  This means that once a while a city dweller will need to make a visit to this place, either to drop or pick someone up.

I was here at 6:00AM today morning to pick some guests who were coming from my hometown. Upon reaching there, I learnt that the bus would be coming only by 8’o clock or so because of some problems on the way. Now I had to wait and having nothing to do I took a stroll around the place. It had been a long while I was here and never have I spent such a long time here.

Unable to bear the filth and the stench  I abandoned my stroll and decided to settle down somewhere with a pack of cigarettes. I sat in front of a close shop and started watching the crowd moving in front of me. There were sleep travellers, workers, rag pickers, auto riksha drivers and several men and women who didn’t seem to have any identity. What caught my attention was a few mad men who were also moving along. Soon I realized that there were in fact many of them. Some of them were extreme – laughing and talking to them selves, some aloof with an expression of deep grief and most of them looked disconnected from rest of the world. The peculiar thing was that unlike the other crowd, they had some identity about them.

As I sat watching these mad men, I could help wondering where they all suddenly appeared from. We normally don’t see mad people in the posh areas of Bangalore, in malls or on the busy main roads. We see rag pickers at the most and not really mad men. And suddenly here were many of them floating in the crowd in front of me.

Is it that it was the filth that attracted them all to Kalasipalaya? Can’t mad people put up with a clean surrounding?

It was about 7:45AM now and I got up to take some photos for the blog. I started looking around for some mad men to take some pictures. But soon to my surprise I realised that most them had vanished. While there were so many at the day break, I could hardly see any now. I walked through some of those narrow lanes to see if I could find some one to take some photos. And my guess was right, there were quiet a few who had taken shelter in some of the narrow alleys.

The locality had by now woken up and was getting ready for the day. And the mad people had vanished quietly from the scene.

My notion about mad people so far has been that they are just disconnected from everything else and live a life within themselves. But I realise that, that’s may not be the case. These mad men avoid the civilization; they prefer to live in places that the civilized people despises and they slowly withdraw in to darkness when the civilised society comes to life.

They are just moving in the opposite direction.

Why? Is it because it the civilized society that calls them mad people? Must be.

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