It was an intense summer day; the kind when sweat beads roll down your spine and your clothes cling to every inch of your body. Bashir sat under shade of the parking lot with his back to the busy corridor. His friend who worked as a ticket collector started bringing him to the university premises for little help and a cheerful company. Despite the sunny bright day with sun blazing at its prime, he could see nothing. It was one thing in life he didn’t miss. The sounds around him filled the vacuum for what others thought he missed on.
There was the usual hustle and bustle in the students’ corridor; students chatting loudly, some were rushing to their classes and university staff going on about their business. The noise from the generators, fans, phone bells was an addition. The distinct click clack of a female pair of shoes lured his interest amidst the everyday chaos. He smiled every time the click clack crossed the corridor. It was like music to his ears. Suddenly the intense summer heat stopped having its effects on him. He seemed to have forgotten his sweaty back, his torn slippers, and his ruffled hair. He was dreaming about a beautiful, well dressed, charismatic successful woman he had heard from those around him. The lady who wears matching heels and carries expensive bags on her shoulders with her dupatta carelessly dancing behind her as she walks ambitiously.
There were many girl students on the campus but the sound of these heels was different. It was new and beautiful. The frequency of the heel clad steps increased. The first time they were relatively calm as if someone walking at a normal pace. After a few minutes the same mystery woman started to pass through the corridor again and again. Every time the urgency in the steps increased. All the sounds and clatter around his dull darkness faded away and the steps grew louder and louder. He shifted on the broken wooden bench under the parking lot shade. His curiosity tickled a fancy and for the first time in years he wanted to see. He desired a glimpse of a woman he so often heard about.
Bashir’s friend noticed the unusual smile fade in and fade out on his friend’s face, who also kept shifting left and right on the ancient broken bench. The ticket collector walked towards Bashir. Before he could inquire about the secretive smile despite the rising temperatures; Bashir himself blurted out the question he first thought would draw unnecessary attention towards his otherwise quiet self. His friend’s attention quickly shifted to the busy corridor Bashir referred to. His eyes searched for the charming lady whose presence had aroused his benign friend’s senses. Just as the exact click clack entered the corridor, Bashir exclaimed, ‘Look look here she comes, describe how she looks…’
Bashir’s friend stared at the figure rushing through the passage into one of the offices. He burst out laughing so hard that it startled his friend. His friend’s sudden comical behavior was a surprise for Bashir, it even made him a little restless.
‘Would you stop laughing and tell me what you saw? It seems like the lady in heels is in a bit of a rush, she wasn’t running at first but then I heard her hurriedly making her way through the corridor’, said Bashir in an awkward voice.
After choking on his laughter his friend replied, ‘That is because it’s not what you think Bashir. The reason the footsteps are in a rush is because the person is a personal secretary to the Post graduate’s Dean and he is running errands. There is a meeting of staff with the Dean and the PA is rushing around making arrangements for chai biscuit. It’s not the lady’s heels that click clacks; it is the PA’s shoes with a thick sole that produces the sound. You have surely been deceived Bashir.’
In a few moments all the bright dreamy descriptions that formed in Bashir’s head came crashing down like an avalanche. The sweat on his brows that had frozen a while back melted under the sweltering heat. His friend’s laughter still teased him and he realized that his curiosity killed the cat.