Working on weekends usually irritates me; I feel enslaved by work; that it has turned me into a machine with no life outside the company building. This Saturday was different. I do not exactly know why. May be because it was foggy and the sky was pregnant with rebellious clouds that threatened to burst out in any moment. Friends always mock me for having this “foggy” mood. It just makes me feel…. mmmm… I don’t know! Well, I think …powerful … safe! I always try to control my desire of childishly leaping when I go out in the morning and see this misty, chilling atmosphere.
Anyway, I left work at 7 PM thinking of how much I love cold winter nights. I wrapped my coat tight around me and enjoyed the cold breeze on my warm cheeks. “It’s a long journey back home!” I whispered to myself with a smile at the corner of my mouth. While crossing the street, I noticed the tram coming from afar. I whispered: “Wait for me!” and widened my steps to catch the old carriage. “Yes!” I said with triumph when I stepped into the tram. I chose an empty corner and sat next to the window on a padded, red seat. A smile sneaked into my mouth when I remembered what my friends call this tram; “Za’zo’a” (Za2zo2a). The word reminded me of my primary school days when we used to play with this tiny tin toy with the crackling sound and call it “Za’zo’a”. I relaxed in my seat with a widening smile.
My attention started to creep outside the carriage to the noisy streets of Heliopolis. The slow movement of the tram allowed me to capture some scenes from the running life outside. Just like camera flash! A man in red shirt and dark blue jacket walked aimlessly. He lowered his head looking for his dreams among his unsure steps. End of shot. A teenager couple sitting on an old wooden seat with their knees touching. He slapped her and she put her hand on her cheek in unbelieving amazement. End of shot. A beggar on a wheelchair approaching cars murmuring some prayers. He stopped leaning down to check a shinning object on the ground. End of shot.
Solid blocks! This is how we see people. Yet inside each block there is a living story of a lifetime; a lifetime of misery and joy, dreams and dead-ends. I started to feel sleepy because of the lulling movement of the tram; just like a baby in a rocking bed. “Do not fall asleep!” I heard myself saying in a yawning voice. “I wonder what mama has cooked for us today!”