July 17, 2012


“You are immature.”

How many times have people said that to you? How many times have you said that to people? Have you kept count? Of course not. That would’ve been an immature thing to do.

Here’s a fact: you are immature.

I was walking down a street today. This typical, busy Mumbai street. I didn’t know its name, nor did I bother about that particular information. My parents had kicked me out of the house because I was being too lazy and was spending too much time in front of the computer. So I decided to keep walking in a particular direction and ended up strolling along this nameless road.

Now Mumbai is a bit different from Kolkata.

1. People are richer.
2. People are poorer.

In other words, if you take away all wealth from half of Kolkata’s population and give it to the other half, you’d have Mumbai. I’m telling you all this because this street displayed the remarkable contrast rather well. One side of the road was a footpath, which I was currently using. Just across, were heaps of garbage, and amidst them, countless poorly built huts. Behind that, you could see the silhouette of tall buildings against the setting sun.

Just an image I googled.

The inhabitants of these huts were everywhere, or so I assumed from their dresses. There was a group of youths smoking on the garbage heaps, a group of girls (hardly 12-13 years of age) carrying huge bundles of grass down the road, mothers picking lice out of their daughters’ hair and vice versa, people layered with soap lined up in front of a tiny tap, etc. These sights were nothing new, and generally they send me into fits of depression. But not today. I was in a rather philosophical mood thanks to a small altercation with Mom.

She had called me, among many other things, immature.

I looked down at myself, as I walked. My dress was shabby, but I had a nice Casio watch on my wrist. So why didn’t someone just come up and snatch it from me? I was deep into their territory too, and chances of punishment for such a crime were low. Still, no one did a thing. I had always thought it was just lack of opportunity that held some of them back and it made me feel ashamed.

At one point, a girl walked up to me and tried to sell me flowers. What would I do with flowers? There were few other pedestrians around too, and all of them looked like they could’ve done a whole lot more with flowers than I ever could. Someone should teach these people how to pick customers. I refused and was walking away.

 A rough translation of her next retort:
“Take them for your girlfriend, good sir.”

The tone was horrible and mocking. Okay, I’m not a great looker, and I dress shabbily, but do you have to be that critical just because I refuse to buy your flowers? I bought a bunch and got rid of her. Only after walking a few paces did I realize that I had been outsmarted. She’d make a nice saleswoman, I observed.

Pardon me; I’m taking you through all this even though I mentioned in the title that this post is about maturity. The thing is, I kind of believed that a walk and a good thought about the topic would clear my mind about the subject, but I realized later that there are better things to think about. If you see the world around you properly, you’d know how trivial a thing ‘maturity’ is.

It is a strange topic, nonetheless. It is like knowledge; you never know how much you don’t know. You never know how immature you are. I have a lot of thoughts about it, but I don’t have sufficient words to express them. That’s okay, though, since this line of thinking is in no way productive.

This is a fail post, I realize.


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About Debapriyo

A random person with few hobbies here and there.

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