A Moment of True Happiness

A young guy, probably in his twenties, dressed in a formal suit and tie is seated on a sofa, in what appears to be the café inside a star hotel. He is seated opposite another man, similarly dressed.

A typical melodious tune (lobby music) plays in the background.

“I’d like a cappuccino.” He says.

“A Mocha Latte Frappuccino for me.” The other guy says to the attendant.

Their gestures and the laptop on the table suggest that they are having a business conversation. They take sips of the beverage in between the discussion.

He looks lost in thought intermittently and thinks:

“That meeting.”

“Will I be able to make it in time? I have just 5 hours left before the flight.”

“And just travelling to and fro could take 4 hours or more in this traffic.”

“But it’s extremely important. I just need 10 minutes…”

“If I miss it this time, I’ll have to wait months…perhaps years before I get another chance.”

We see him finish the conversation. He gets up and shakes hands with the other gentleman.

“Thanks. Look forward to the detailed proposal.” The other gentleman says.

“Sure, you’ll have it by the weekend.” He replies.

He knows he’s all but sealed the deal. Another big project in the company’s portfolio. Another big success. And yet, not even a small sense of happiness.

Yes, it was the right time for the other meeting. He felt reassured and convinced. They both walk towards the lobby, going their separate ways.

We see the cup of cappuccino, still nearly full.

Standing at hotel entrance, he swipes on an app on his phone, and a car arrives moments later. He hurriedly gets into the car and gives instructions to the driver.

The car is driving through heavy traffic. There’s incessant honking and cacophonous, vehicle noises.

The man thinks:

“I still think about him when I am alone.”

“I sometimes wish time was a like train that I could get on to come back and be with him for all these years.”

“But I can’t.”

“I just hope I get to meet him.”

“Will he even recognize me?”

He looks at the watch. Time is ticking away.

“Yes, right here please.”

The car stops and his heart pounds louder. He appears nervous.

He checks his suit and tie to make sure his clothes are in order.

He walks out of the car and looks afar nostalgically. There’s a building in front of him whose gates appear closed for visitors at this hour. Beyond the buildings and structure, far away in the background stand a chain of majestic mountains, below the skies lit up with an array of sunset colors.

This sight affords a sense of inexplicable comfort to him. He breathes the air as if he is trying to soak in each and every scent of that place.

He turns his face towards a bench located a few yards away from the gate, where someone he knows seems to be sitting.

His face lights up.

He walks slowly towards the bench.

He realizes something, pauses for a moment, and then takes off his blazer and folds up his sleeves.

He sits next to the person on the bench.

The other guy turns his face towards him and smiles. He looks at him with inquisitive eyes.

Just then a guy passes by.

He says to the passerby:

“Bhaiya, ek cutting chai (A cup of tea, please).”

He sips the chai (tea) and smiles, with a sense of peace.

There, seated alone on that college bench, he seemed to have found his younger self again.

Even after working abroad all these years, he found the carefree, happy guy HE was in college.

He found his one true moment of happiness!

“There is no greater sorrow than to recall a happy time when miserable.”

~Dante.