My mother would treat me and my sister to one packet of bhel puri each on our way back home from the twice-or-thrice-a-week outing to the nearby park in Mumbai. Packet is a catachresis, because I don’t know if a word exists for the newspaper cut-outs that are rolled into things that look like a bad replacement for conical birthday-caps. Anyways. Now, as soon as I could lay my hands on that overflowing treat, trying my best not to think about the one-or-two grains of moori falling off the brim, and take my eyes off the children on the streets coveting my prize, I would try and make a mental note of whether my sister had received a greater bounty than I had. Then I would try to ensure that I ate as slowly as possible, for finishing last in this race meant that you enjoyed for a longer period of time, and that somehow gave me satisfaction. Satisfaction of what, I don’t have a clear idea. Because, even a crude estimate would tell that I had the same amount of moori as she did. Probably eating longer was confused with eating more. And in this process, all the attention would be on her packet, and I would try to make sure that I ate as slowly as possible.Then one fine day, I tripped, lost balance, and then had a hard time telling the moori from the dust around.
In life too, instead of enjoying what you have, you try to figure out what others are up to, crave for stuff that isn't yours, and that makes you sulk. Then one fine evening, you trip, and can’t tell the moori from the dust.