Today I walked to the market listening to music - something I almost never do here because you really need to have all your senses on high alert to make it through the streets in one piece. Today, though, I was listening to Leonard Cohen's Live in London and I didn't want to turn it off.
It's amazing music and I walked faster than I ever did (and I walk fast), but this time with a little jazz to my step that made me suddenly remember an old and dear friend.
Melanie Monsour was my friend in high school and my roommate in college and we went through some very interesting times together over which I draw a discreet veil.
The point of this post is the memory of Melanie walking.
I was with a friend and we were driving to pick Melanie up somewhere in Somerset, Mass. She had gotten tired of waiting for us and had set out to meet us on the road. From a distance (I can still see her now) we spotted her coming toward us: in a powder blue ski jacket, hands in the jacket pockets, rolling down the road as if on skates.
"How does she do that?" my friend (he was from Lebanon) asked, baffled.
"Do what?" I replied, so used to Melanie I no longer noticed anything.
"Walk like she's dancing."
Inner music? A soul set to sound? I don't know, but that's how I think of her and that's what came back to me in a rush today as I took my life in my hands listening to music and walking these mean streets of Dehradun.