Almost a decade back I was traveling by bus going on tour to interiors of one of the disturbed areas in the North East of India. I was in the third row window side seat. Only mode of communication to that area was by road and the bus had to go under police protection due to terrorist problem. This was a schedule tour I took every month so it was not as unnerving as it may sound. We could then only travel in the day as night service was not allowed due to the trouble brewing in the area.Once you are forced to travel in such area fear becomes an accepted fact of life. You tend enjoy the scenery as it goes through the hilly areas with greenery around.
Coming back to that day’s journey. I saw a couple with their little son sitting in the first row. They seemed to locals going perhaps back to their home or to somewhere to meet some one. So normal. Somehow I could not take my eyes away from them. In my heart I knew if they saw me looking at them they would feel uncomfortable, even ask why I was staring at them. What would I say? Actually I was not seeing them. I was visualizing me sitting with my wife and son traveling in the bus oblivious of all the problems that surround us. I was some 1200 km away from my wife and my son who was then just 2 years old.
It was a time when I used to return to my home town once in three months. Now many may think why I did not take family along with me. How can one take them along when one is touring for 20 days every month? What do you miss the most? The question should have been what you did not miss when you were from your home.
You miss your family, your son’s laughter. His naughtiness, his ability to create nuisance, his nagging, you miss him. You miss your wife, her love, quarrels, those precious moments which cannot be expressed in words. You miss your room, your bed. You miss your life.