I was travelling to a small city for important business schedule. I choose train to travel because, incessant rains from the last few days has shut down major roadways. There is impeding danger of landslides on the train route as well. Fortunately, that day, rain has subsided paving way for mist-filled views of gorges and green mountains on the way. I sat on the window seat looking at beauty of Mother Nature, darkness embedded tunnels. Tunnels always made me waiting for end of it. As tunnel ends, a light of hope always made darkness invisible.
“He is lucky to become a star.” My Co-Passenger exclaimed to another co passenger pointing at the image of the actor in the news magazine he was reading. I felt curious since I knew the actor very personally. I asked him, “What is so lucky about him?”
Co-passenger is more than happy to share his story with me. His voice is rustic. He wore business attire. His baldhead had just started losing hair indicating his age in something around 40s.
“I and this actor studied in same school, same college and same university. He was shy and serious natured geek back then. He was an introvert, never spoke in bold and harsh words. He was timid. He never appeared in many cultural fests or stage performances.” He paused for some time to remember something. I am still listening. This might be a part; I was missing throughout my life to know about the actor I most admire.
“He was teacher’s favorite, above average in studies. He never gained first rank, but top ten lists always had his name. In fact, he is that perfect student who always dominated reference of our teachers and parents. It is definitely a heaven of luck, could have changed him to become so expressive actor. Look at him now. What a physique, what a mannerism, what a fan following, Number of national International Awards.” A sigh of jealousy and comparison is evident from his face.
“Then, he should have remembered you?” I asked to know what kind of relationship this person had with actor.
“No, who is going to remember that guy. He is just our “come and go” friend. He comes in handy one day before exams. In fact, we had a bet that this geek will not have a wonderful, chilling and thrilling life ahead. He was so boring. I heard that after completing mechanical engineering he worked at very small company for meager scale. He said he loved the work and knowledge he is getting from it. We ridiculed him. He was happy with the small things. I really do not believe how he became superstar now. It should be luck or he may have some nasty connections or adjustments within the industry. You know what I mean?” He passed on a dirty smile to me.
“How could you know that he is geek? He may be a good mimic, a singer in his own circles. Probably his talent got missed in many egos and lack of supports.”
“It is not possible. I have had seen him for almost a decade in his childhood to teenage. He and a stage performance never go hand in hand. “
I was bit annoyed.
“Have you ever seen a cocoon?” I asked.
He seemed not interested in this unusual question. He casually nodded as no.
“Cocoons are next stage of caterpillar and final stage before a butterfly. A Cocoon looks boring, without color, stagnant, yet it undergoes a major transformation within. Its transformation is invisible to naked eye. A transformation, which makes a nasty looking caterpillar to a beautiful winged creature. A miracle of land dwelling lazy thing converts into a wonderful tiny wizard of sky. We may not see the change, yet change is a very subtle and elusive term. Exact change is not the one we expected to be. Most of the time, we judge people from “what they are today” and “what they have done till then” for “what they going to do or create tomorrow”.
He found my explanation very boring; he ignored me and started reading magazine. I hate such people who blame you when you fail and favor your luck when you get success. They think,” This person was like us, a common man till yesterday, how did he become famous within a fortnight?” They do not want to believe that everyone has that extra talent which blossoms and spreads its fragrance in proper time and in proper support system. A journey of success is difficult all the way. We witness only results. No one could understand frustration, failed attempts, humiliation back stage of success. By Judging, we miss an opportunity to associate with the creation of miracle. We miss a chance to witness a miracle and we miss a chance to inspire from it. As the world is changing every day, every person is changing day by day.
I stopped the conversation with him. It is better to be silent with naysayers and idiots. I looked outside. Sunrays followed tiny cracks in the clouds to see a glimpse of ravines, dangerous cliffs, some villages here and there. Rivers glistened with sunlight. There were some village kids swimming naked in Small channels. I really missed those old days when I was a kid in a hillside village. Soon the view changed to constructions, Plots, little bit urbanization. I packed my luggage and waited for my station. My co-passenger, child hood friend of famous Actor also followed.
Platform is overcrowded, bit unusual for a small station like this. My fellow passenger also felt the wave of uneasiness. As I loaded my luggage onto the platform, my friend hugged me. He is waiting for me to arrive. He looked at my fellow passenger and recognized him, “Hello Vag, whats up. What are you doing now?” My friend addressed him in a typical mimicking manner, a style statement of his good own old “come and go” friend. Some cameras Flashed when my friend hugged that fellow passenger Vag. My friend is same famous versatile actor in whole of world and yet he remained humble since he knows and remembers where his roots are.
Vag’s face is unrecognizable now. It has confusion, a jealousy, and a bit of celebrity feeling, happiness feeling and what not. Actor had same composure and respect for vag from his old childhood days. He gave his visiting card and requested to keep in contact with him. Vag is stunned at his disclosure.
I knew my friend actor from his struggling days. In fact, I had started my event-managing career along with his struggling career. We stayed in suburban of the film city together. I was working in event managing company to my support; he had nothing except some savings from his previous jobs. He was fond of acting and mimicking in his childhood days, often did performances in enclosed room, in front of his only supporter his sister. He was the topper in the class, secured a below average job on insistence of his family in years of job crisis all over world. He did add jobs to pay for expensive ad agencies, model memberships. He slept for only 4 hours. In the morning, he ran to seashore for exercise, as he is bereft of money to pay for body trainers. He used a rock for muscle building. For months together, he survived on single meal on roadside hotels. He practiced with the local traditional wrestlers, teaching their children in return. I saw him practice dialogues in front of mirror for hours. Acting was his passion. He suddenly discovered his hidden talent in one of his office outings. He sang, enacted his own song and script in front of his colleagues. He still remembers his colleagues who supported him. His Initial roles were crippled, often projected him as the side villain or sidekick to sidekick of hero. He acted in some worthy commercials. Whenever a director rejected him, he practices mannerisms dialogues for whole night. In his initial days, when he got some early offers he chose the roles with caution. His first nine films failed at box office, yet he won good acting reviews, national, international awards and appreciations for some films. He is a versatile actor; he knew singing and script writing. He really knew what he would become in a decade. He is the one who kicked me from routine job and inspired me to open an event management company of my own. Yet he is humble to his family and friends. He is here to find a location for his new production venture. In addition, as his event manager I just landed to assist him.