The Sanctity Of Silence | Flash Post 410
Button, I love Sunday mornings.
Why? Is there any particular reason?
It’s the silence that greets me. The pandemic, for one, actually made me realise how pure and wholesome silence can be.
But it’s very noisy here because ours is a road-facing apartment.
True. Just before the pandemic happened, the noise drove me up a wall too. Also, it’s the school across the street. The constant honking of car horns with parents rushing to drop off their kids used to be maddening. In fact, I had forgotten all about silence.
This is one thing I’ve never understood about human beings. Speaking of honking to get other cars out of the way is not possible if there are vehicles jamming the road! Does this need telling? I’ve timed some of the honking and found that they lasted a full 30 seconds. Sometimes more. Is it because the driver wants to pass on a message to the traffic policeman that the traffic lights have turned green because, I guess, he knows his stuff!
One of the reasons I love travelling is because I can experience quietness. The wreck this constant cacophony causes gets wiped away instantly. The one thing I love doing when we are in Kolkata, for instance, is to sit beside the pool at The Grand and soak in the sun and the silence.
Are you telling me that it’s calm and quiet in the middle of the day with the hotel located in the heart of Chowringhee Road?
That’s what I am saying, Button, and it’s the most divine feeling in the world to sit by the pool doing nothing in particular but savour the silence. In silence. I detest going out of the hotel to be greeted by noisy jostling crowds and traffic sounds.
You haven’t been to your city ever since the pandemic put a halt to your travel plans. How are you getting your dose of quietness?
You’re forgetting the fact that when the pandemic happened, schools closed, offices shut down, stores downed their shutters, traffic came to a standstill and life, in general, came to a total halt. With it, the noise vanished entirely and silence made its entry almost overnight. It felt uncanny at first but then, slowly, it began to seep in making me realise that the quietness I had travelled to find outside the city was right here without stepping out of the city. I was so noise-fatigued by this time that the silence seemed like a breath of fresh air.
But when the pandemic has wrecked havoc around the world in every way, isn’t noise and pandemonium better than having your life razed to the ground?
Life comes with ups and downs? Aren’t we fighting every day of our lives just to be? This pandemic is like the tallest ever tsunami we’ve encountered but we are up and about. Most of the people I know are alive and well. Unfortunately, some perished because they fell to the might of the tsunami. Life deals us blows, some small, some big, now and then, to help us mutate into better and stronger people in order to tackle more tsunamis during our lifetime. We survived the Asian Flu pandemic, the HIV/AIDS pandemic, H1N1 Swine Flu pandemic, MERS, SARS, and emerged a little wiser, a little stronger, a little braver.
Would you still opt for silence?
To me, it’s that elbow on the expressway where you can halt briefly, take a deep breath, before hitting the highway again.