The Wait

Kajal Chatterjee
Apart from indulging in actual work, recreational activities and sleep; we also have to devote a lot of time of our lives in Waiting --- waiting in banks, hospitals and where not !
Waiting is indeed a matter of great irritation especially when the surrounding ambience is most often crowded, chaotic,  unpleasant and even without adequate sitting facilities. It also results in a colossal wastage of precious time as we could have performed many other necessary tasks during that period gone unproductive.
However in this hugely populated country, with service providing institutions being disproportionately less, confronting unending queues is inevitable.
So when there is no provision of escaping this phenomenon of waiting, we must explore various paths to utilise it in a constructive way or at least find avenues to make it tolerable or even entertaining !
However prior to that I must mention a set of people who are least perturbed by waiting. One, those who love gossiping ! Anytime, anywhere, in any circumstance, they can strike up a conversation with an absolutely unknown set of people and they get engrossed in such a scale and depth that it seems that the more they wait the more they relish ! I vividly remember the ambience within a classroom where the polling personnel tagged "Reserved" were asked to wait since noon before the polling day. Hardly anybody knew each other as polling personnel were drawn from various offices around the city. Yet to my astonishment, I noticed that within half an hour, 2 or 3 groups got formed to indulge in gossiping about all topics of the world, cards came out, legs started getting pulled and in the evening they set out in search of tea and snacks as well ! In contrast I was noticing the reserved non-gossiping folks emitting sigh for getting bored and lamenting why call of duty is not coming or why they are not getting released !
Those who are obsessed with social media perhaps also find no problem how to negotiate the wait !
However folks not interested either in gossip or social media certainly find the wait intolerable. So they can explore things which they love. For example, book lovers can carry any paperback edition with them. If finding themselves in a queue, they can effectively utilise the time in going through it. (To be contd)