Gauri was walking down the path with a walking stick enjoying the sounds that nature has offered. As she heads to the bench, she can feel his presence. Om’s presence.
G: Hi, Om. (Thinking) I thought he would not come after yesterday after seeing my disability.
Om gets up and holds on her hand and guides her to the bench.
G(Smiling): I am coming here to this park for the past few months. I do not need your sympathy, Om.
O: Who said that I am showing sympathy, Myrah? I am helping my friend. Is that a problem?
O: Can I ask you a question? Why are you acting so hostile? Just because you are blind (Gauri looks at him) it does not mean that is a disadvantage.
G: But, everyone looks at me as if I have a disability and need help from them? I do not need their help and I can manage myself.
O: I know you can. You courageously come to the park and go back home. And, you are talking to a person you barely met. You do not even know me. Also, your blindness is not a disadvantage but it is actually an advantage. You look at this world from a different perspective. Using all the other sense, you only see the nice parts of the world. You are so lucky. Everyone else looks at art and nature through their eyes. But, you… you experience it. You can hear the sounds, and use your nose to smell. As a person who enjoys art, this is a blessing in disguise. Who cares what other people think?
G: Thank you Om… Omkara Singh Oberoi.
G: I know who you are… You are the famous artist and the second brother of the Oberoi brothers.
O: How did you figure it out? I did not even tell you and you never seen me before. Sorry, I did not mean it that way.
G: I know what you were implying. The first clue was your scent. It is an expensive brand as it lasts for a long time. And then you told me you were an artist and only a famous artist hosts several exhibitions.
O: But, there are so many famous artists? How did you know it was me?
G: Your long hair…
O(Touching his hair): My hair…
G: Last time, your hair blew on my shoulder so I knew you had long hair. Also, there was a newspaper article yesterday and my brother always read the newspaper out loud so I can follow it.
O: So based on my long hair and the description in the newspaper, you put two and two together and made the conclusion that I am Omkara Singh Oberoi. Myrah, I am truly impressed. You are smarter than most people that I know. So, how do you get here?
G: By auto, it is approximately 20 minutes drive. At first, my brother would not let me come here by myself but I wanted to venture out into the world. I was so tired of being cooped inside the house.
O: So you were not born with this.
G(Thinking): I cannot tell him the truth. No one should know that I am a victim. No one will look at me that way. (Says) Over time, I lost my eyesight.
O: Did you try to get some medical consultation?
G: The doctors said there is no hope.
O: Oh, you always talk about your brother. What is his name?
G: Dandi… Dandi bhaiyya. He is more like a father to me though. He treats me as his child more than his sister.
O: My older brother, Shivaye, is also like that too. To think about it, I am also the same with my younger brother, Rudra. I think it is just an older brother thing. So, you also go to the mosque as well right?
G: Mosque? What are you talking about?
O: Well, you are Muslim and you wear a niqab so you need to pray as well.
G(Thinking): How can I lie about something so religious? Yes, I do not practice Islam but god is god and I cannot, should not lie. What to do? (Says) Om, I need to go now. I will see you later.
O: Gauri, please do not mistake me but my number is 989 989 9898. If you want, you can give me your number as well. I understand that sooner or later, you will get bored of coming to this place and might go somewhere else. Then I will not see you. I always look forward talking to you. It is kinda of therapeutic.
G: Uh… I really love this park and will never go anywhere else at this time. See you later.
Gauri walks away.
O: Why was Myrah acting so weird when I mentioned the mosque? She felt uncomfortable.
All of sudden, his phone beeps and he gets a text message.
This is Myrah. Save the number. See you later, Omkara.
Om smiles and enjoys his afternoon at the park.