The instance is quite old. I was just 15 and we had shifted to a new locality. It was the first day, the auspicious day of Grah Pravesh. A local Pandit Ji was called with the help of the family next door. We were new to that place but the family next door was living there for a couple of years and was well aware of the whereabouts of each and every thing required. There were family friends and few neighbors for the new house ceremony. Pandit Ji asked for some sweets and being a boy, I volunteered to bring it without even knowing where the market was where I could find a sweets shop to buy some fresh laddoos. Our neighbor insisted accompanying, but I was getting overconfident probably. I told them to just guide me by telling the directions and I will manage. Those were the days when youth were engaged more into playing games every day in the street, park or grounds, but outside the house. No smartphone era where a youth of my age is just engrossed in music, videos and games, being eccentric, introvert and isolated.
It was evening time. I was told that after getting down the stairs of my first-floor house, I have to turn left, take a right and then the left and there will be a small market where I would find a sweets shop, small but neat. I followed the instructions and found the shop easily. There were some street dogs barking and growling, but I was fearless – fearless as if the whole world was mine. I paid the money to sweets shop owner in lieu of the fresh laddoos and started back for home. Something strange happened and I forgot my address. Instead of 95, I remembered that my house number was 92 and thus landed in the back row of my new colony. But this couldn’t be my house as its entrance was towards west while my house entrance was towards the east. The family in the ground floor of 92 helped me in finding out my correct house. Sun had started setting and it was a little dark by now, but I was fearless. This small instance is still alive, fresh in my mind.
I have landed into my early fifties. Recently we shifted to a new colony. I ensured that we have fresh laddoos and other things in place for the Grah Pravesh Puja ceremony. Pandit Ji asked for some additional material and I had to step out of my new house to get it from a nearby temple. The temple was not far off, but I could feel a little fear inside me. There were no dogs barking and growling around, but I still was a little fearful. I was not certain what the reason of this fear was. While returning back home, I again forgot the house address. I tried asking a young boy around for some assistance, but he ignored me. Probably he did not see me even he was in front of me. He was doing some multitasking, aggressively typing on his smartphone – on WhatsApp and simultaneously listening to music with earphones stuffed in his both ears. I got desperate and fearsome.
Somehow after some time and walking through some streets around, finding nobody to assist me, I started feeling lost. I got so lost that I forgot that I have a smartphone in my pocket and I can call someone at home to get some assistance. Somehow, my daughter called me on my phone, and with the help of our neighbors guided me back to the house. I am wondering if we have advanced in life with the technology or have got lost and started growing in a fearful world.