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“What do you do?”


Onetime I was traveling from Paro to Thimphu in a taxi. The taxi driver was a friendly and a jolly one from Tashigang. I was the first passenger to get into; we waited for a while till two others came. It was only four of us altogether. The driver seemed happy for he got passengers which means adding a stack on his wallet. The music player was on and he was equally singing together with each song that echoed in the whole seats. I was in the front seat, but I dared not tell anything about the music although it was too loud for my ear drum. I sat patiently and seemingly normal to him, browsed Facebook and twitter on my mobile.

Suddenly he reduced the volume of the music and asked: “Hang Chag la Nangcha ya tha Sir cho? (What work do you do sir?)” At first I was frightened not because he asked me that question, but because the question was unexpected and ad-hoc. Then I was blushed and embarrassed, because I really didn’t have concrete answer to that particular question. I stammered for a moment and replied: “I just stay in and around! (Ngya Tha Ann Chon Cha!)” Perhaps that was the stupidest answers I ever gave in my life till now. I regret for being truthful, because it embarrassed me, it made me feel too low. Perhaps that’s the price of being truthful always? And maybe my answer also shocked him too, because then, he did not speak even a word with me.  I in turn did the same until the taxi reached Thimphu.

Well, who am I? And what do I do? I ask these questions so frequently, try to find answer, and there are no concrete answers yet, which makes me nothing and nobody, except the fact that I am but a human. Right now, if I am a bird, then I am the one whose wings are not fully developed yet and can’t fly of my own through the currents of wind.  If I am a calf, I am the one whose mother has just stopped feeding me with her milk and sadly who can’t even graze on its own. I have leg that still needs to walk some extra mile to get firm support so as to stand on my own. I have a hand that still needs some stretches to make it work and a head that still waits to be tested for dozen of years’ struggle, so called learning. I am still a tadpole that depends on the waves of water.

And unfortunately and sadly, it is going to be for some time before I develop my own wings or be able to graze myself or before I change to frog. It is a long process, yet I remain hopeful and optimistic.

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