The Dark Room of Light

There’s this place. You are alone there. And that’s the feature of that place. That when you are in that place, you are alone. I’ve been there. A few times.

There’s this site. It provides advice to young people about life and such. They wrote to me and asked me if I’d write for them and advice youngsters. I asked them, a few questions about the terms of writing for them. I asked them who they are; I asked them if they would pay me. They never replied. I smiled to myself, after three days. After they never replied.

There’s a place where you are alone and together at the same time.

There’s a hostel. It’s U-shaped. Not curved, but digital in a sense. I stayed in that hostel for two years. I do not know the word for a U-shaped hostel with sharp corners, which is like a square with one side cut-off.

“I’ll tell you what you should do,” he said, towel around his neck, clothed in nothing else than his underwear. “But, it doesn’t matter. You will do your own thing. For what it’s worth. I’ll tell you,” and he advised how I should navigate learning computer science, in the context of who taught us and what made them tick. But it doesn’t matter, he said, after he had said it all, soap rolled in the middle of the towel, on his neck, and walked off to his room.

It’s been 20-odd years since that day when a senior advised me about college. The only thing I remember, is, “But, it doesn’t matter. You will do your own thing.”

And that advice is what works for you. When you are alone. In that place. It is usually not dramatic. But, we could colour it dark. Put in a few shadows for dramatic effect. Allow the light to play a drama worthy of a Western Cinematographic Award. But, the place remains the same, and no director can call a “cut” and bring us back to reality. There’s this place. You are alone there. And that’s the feature of that place. That when you are in that place, you are alone.

You may imagine yourself in a corner, in such a scenario. But you are not. It’s a big space. Devoid of features and textures. It is all available to you, but you are alone. It is an empty space, where you can walk, and there are no threats.

That space could be full of light. Or it could be dark.

You can choose.

But, you are alone. Cry. Scream. Jump. Sit. Sleep. Fight. Relax.

And, there. you will end up doing your own thing.


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