By Sidra Mahmood Khan
Clock notifies 3:14 AM in the morning as I type this through. Had a random glare of a biker through my hostel window. Also, I can observe a couple of streetlights and in the background somewhere, a few traffic light signals as well. Near to my room is a hostel parameter wall, which links with service road where only two streetlights are visible. A park is situated between the service and main road. The idea of making this public park is quite interesting as a year ago, the place was merely a green belt, but in couple of months, municipal workers transformed it altogether into a park. Idea was brilliant, since rich green trees had already covered the road densely, all it required was to add some dustbins, pavement, a few swings and couple of badminton courts to turn it into park. There are various kinds of birds which I hear chirping in different times of the day, especially early and late hours of a day. Nowadays, one can enjoy them chirping at any time of the day since there is no background noise of deafening traffic. I can only recognize the sound of cuckoos, sparrows, crows, pigeons and one bird, whose sound is very appealing but never saw it around. I am in love with the sound of that bird to be honest. Peaceful, polite and serene. As if nature is trying to sooth and heal my bashed and fidgety soul.
The shape of the park is amorphous; long but narrow at times due to the less space and gets voluminous all of sudden. The park ends where the road ends. Both park and adjacent road bear uneven terrain. Trees in the park have an interesting sight. So, I was telling about the trees. Their stems and roots are quite different than we generally have in Pakistan. Due to the excessive rain, algae are very common and covers stems/shoots of the trees. Roots are exposed all over the ground and spread all over the area. Consistently, trees are tall but bent in shape and spread widely. Their shade is not as dense like Pakistani trees, for instance, oak or banyan trees. One simply cannot shelter under them during heavy downpour. At the narrowest path of the park, leaves of these trees spread across the roads with gust of wind. The sight of covering the shades of trees to the road make it dreamier.
Towards left side of the main road, there are few buildings consisting of small shopping malls, hosting both halal and non halal restaurants. Also, a couple of pubs, which remain open the entire night. Sometimes the music gets too loud, clearly audible at certain distances. One of the pubs is always ‘high’ on some sort of parties. I can only assume it though, through the blend of noise made by loud music and people going berserk over mics. Adjacent to it lies Nando’s, along withOldTown White Coffee restaurant where I went for the first time with my roommate when I landed in this country. The food and coffee are tasty but serving size is quite less. Restaurant is bit expensive, but nonetheless, atmosphere is quite comfortable. A couple of banks and their ATM’s are also part of the malls near the restaurant. The good thing about ATM’s is that they are guarded 24/7, so one may go any time without any fear. The famous 7/11 store is also there to help the people in the time of emergency, but on the contrary, it is expensive. There is a newly opened private hospital which has simple and quite appealing building is also on the right side of 7/11. Behind the hospital, there are couple of skyscapes for residential and official purposes.
My dorm is near to where I can view this sight through my window. Old people, love birds, kids, local and international tourists pass by the road and whenever I look outside the window, I can observe them usually awestruck with the view. I observe and enjoy every type of view; sunny, cloudy, rainy, windy, dawn and sunset, just like humans bear infinite palette of moods in their traits, convictions or beliefs.
The writer is a contributor for Bolan Tribune