Baksha बक्सा- the series

An exploration into our compartmentalized existence.

Long before the Covid 19 quarantine, when time was moments and not money, before I left home and came here. I remember.

 

The public transports in Kathmandu I used to take, the poorly embellished caged boxes on wheels, depending on the time of the day they were either filled beyond normal capacities that I could barely sit nor stand or they were so empty that I would feel guilty even to commute. They would always rock back and fourth on the pothole filled roads that took me away and back home. All the while, absurd curiosities would rattled in my mind everyday, I'd often wonder about the stories of the new faces I'd see every day. Their expressions mute but their eyes so expressive. I could only read so little before they got off or I did. But in that moment, we were all together in the box, headed somewhere.

Years later, I started noticing the box more often. I would wake up in one, finish my morning routines in another, use one for passage then settle to eat in another, set out into the world only to get into another box. I saw them all around me, I travelled in boxes to reach other boxes, I prayed, learned, played, hid and existed in them. Everyone called them different names, but they were just boxes. My town was a box made of cased passages, markets, realty and boundaries. The city far away was similar with a plethora of compartments and the states, the countries beyond, they go on. These invisible walls of boxes kept appearing. It was then, I started to notice the boxes within myself. 

My boxes of morals, values, interests and dislikes, my filters of acceptance and rejections, my tribe and the outsiders, the boxes of yes and no, the ingredients of my personality. The intangible boxes containing all that dictated the nature of my being and the entanglement between them all. 

Although limiting, it did helped me compartmentalize to better understand my world, just like training wheels. They are still there, only I don't lug the burden of the boxes anymore.

 © 2020 by Samridh Mukhiya

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