A traffic jam on j j flyover is not the best place for a bout of sudden claustrophobia. For watching the minutes tick by. Watching cars huddle four deep in space designed for just three. Watching the curtain billow on a tiny lit-square of a window next to the flyover. Glimpse, if you must, for a brief moment the spotless kitchen inside. Wonder idly if the bridge was designed to take this sort of wear and tear, bumper to bumper on idle. Not much left past a cement cloud should it crumble, or so one thinks. Next time take the train, and appearances be damned.
The saga continues re water pipes, concrete roads and pneumatic drills that thunder ratatatatat past midnight. Voila, no dusting required. Step out and walk past a makeshift huddle, curly-haired dimpled baby playing blissfully on a tar road, custodian seven-year-old brother and dark skinned labourer mother watching from a distance. “Naam?,” I ask. “Rani,” he says bashfully. “And you?” “Raja,” he says looking down. As simple as that.