There are a very few times when I get frightened but this was one of those times when I was. Last winters, in the month of October, I saw what seemed to be impossible and what, I believed, would never have been believed by me.
I was returning from the evening class. The roads in the winters are cleared early due to the fog and frosty air. I probably would have gone straight to home as usual but that day I decided to take a look on the Guava trees planted inside the courtyard of our local milkman so I took a detour. I have always had fascinated eating the ripen fruits straight from the trees- fresh and genuine. No contamination, no added preservatives or cold storages’ frosted and unreal tasting bits.
Most people who have had the chance of having the fruits straight from the garden can tell the difference between tastes of a naturally grown fruits and the stored ones. So do I.
I have always been so imaginative, thanks to my mother. I owe it to our early conditions when mom used to teach me how to imagine things I don’t have or can’t have. I have used this ‘gift’ of mine in writing. It is something I enjoy the most, after travelling, or probably they both share the equal part of me.
Going after your imagination is mostly rewarding but here my subconscious caught me unaware. The subconscious that always have stored snippets of the experiences from the past; one which is responsible for most of the responses we give on a daily routine. The same subconscious has lethal implications if unknowingly it pulls out a bad imprint from the storage of our mind when coincided with an equally bad situation or worse.
The complication of mind is something of fascination again. People study it in different manner and call it an art and a science. There are those who take great interest in your behaviors and make you feel anxious by their continuous watch. I call it interfering in personal space. But they would do it anyway.
Then there are people who have earned degrees by dissecting brains and playing with the ‘noodled’ neurons, arteries and veins. They call themselves Neurologists. I rarely see them around for you got to have a maddening disease playing with your head if you want to see them.
The question, however, is not what we know of this 3-pound organ of ours but it is – what is hidden inside, unknown to us?
That day my subconscious did the same to me – played with my wits. Soon as I entered in the garden, I sensed the eeriness of the place around me. Not a single sound. Not even the crickets’. People, traffic, animals and all other creatures seem to have retired to their places.
So far I firmly have followed my wits until when it came upon me that few years back a man was murdered and hanged to one of the trees here. I wanted to trace back my steps but seemed to have lost track. The trees were all around me and over me. They probably were as dark as night itself. It was then when I heard a faint noise coming in some distance. It was sound of someone’s breathing- a broken breathe, like those of asthma patients. I sensed someone else was there beside me. I walked towards my right where I thought the boundary wall would be and soon I could feel a breathe on my neck, from behind of me. It was not warm but ice cold.
I gave a start. That memory pulled out by my subconscious made it difficult for me to turn around and see who it was. I was sure that it was now only matter of time when something really horrible would happen to me, but my body and limbs seemed to have frozen. No matter how hard I thought in my mind I could not get away without imagining the dead man’s figure behind me and could not move a muscle except for my ears were sharp.
Suddenly the breathe stopped. It was not relief but beginning of the the haste.
I couldn’t turn back so with all moving muscles of mine I tried to run forward along with the boundary wall. I ran but I don’t remember if it was fast. In some state of trance or may be dilemma and sunken heart I completed a circle of the garden till I was once again at the gates and out of it the next instant.
From there I could sense my limbs and could run as fast as I could feel. I don’t remember if I was breathing or still holding my breath but I ran with all might till I was at the door of my house.
I don’t know if there was really something in the garden or merely cold air passing through the leaves of the trees and my subconscious played with me by pulling in that memory at the wrong time.