I woke up in the middle of the night feeling alive but alone – this book was like a friend who had sat at my bedside, loyally waiting for the moment when I would awake, so we could rejoice at my recovery and laugh and say I loved life again. I read it for hours, until the sun came up and it was time to finally bathe and wash clothes and prepare for the journey home.
Later I was reading Life of Pi on the train back to Mumbai. As night descended I set it down and stretched out on my bunk, looking out between the bars on the window. We passed over dark hills, flashes of orange lights occasionally blinking by, shaking and roaring through long tunnels. I lay on my side to let me ear drain – periodically I felt a drip of liquid escape its prison and slide down my ear canal. It made me deliriously happy. I loved being on the train, with the breeze slipping in through the window, the comforting clacking of the tracks, and the thought of traveling once again; moving towards whatever was next.