It matters where you’re headed more than how you’re headed.
If you’re wondering who said that, it is I.
I realised the truth in those words for the first time as I leaned back on my seat, and heard a disapproving grunt from the passenger behind me.
350 kms and about seven hours on a bus. (It would be five and a half or six during the day, but no one’s decoded the Indian standard time yet). Oh, and the seven hours doesn’t include the hour-long (or longer) wait at the bus stop because we Indians don’t conform (to timetables, in particular), and our roads aren’t paved to accommodate on-timers.
In fact, going home on a Friday night isn’t something to look forward to, but more of a painful endeavour.
Still, though, every time I go home, my spine would tingle for my lazy couch and my stomach would growl for some homemade gravy. For every back-breaking minute I endure on the bus, I imagine lying at home sipping steaming tea and streaming shows I’ve never watched before.
Because when you’re at home, you’re home. You’re the celebrity and you get — in a day — all you’ve craved for the last six months.
And that thought makes all the potholes and broken armrests worthwhile. Nevertheless, the journey is all about tossing over trying to sleep on a seat that’s meant to be sat on. Or staring out at the dark sky dotted with specks of silvery stars, and pretending that other buses shrieking through the silent night doesn’t bother me at all.
I manage to do all that, every single time. And when the bus stops for a midnight break, I look at the watery mess they call coffee, and I smile. Because I know it’ll be better in the morning and I’d be home.