It's time to tell you how I felt after I quit.
Finally the dawn approached. Finally the sound of Fuel - Shimmer came over my Sony clock-Mp3-Alarm which I bought to replace the Panasonic clock-radio that still worked perfectly fine. I looked at the face in the mirror, into the eyes crusted at the corners where lurked ... there in those dark holes ... fear. I brushed the salty scum from my teeth, I stepped into the warm shower, and I squirted shampoo into the cup of my palm going through the motions as I had done every other day of my working life like an automaton preprogrammed and debrained.
I dressed. I wrapped my flesh in layers against the Mumbai's Non-existent Winter. I walked down out of my apartment to the cold cocoon of the rickshaw and started my Mp3 Phone, plugging Seal into my ears, because I knew the song so well, I could go on autopilot for the quick 15-minute commute to where I work. The rickshaw pulled into the parking lot. It was empty.
I did it. Quit. I got an Egg Patties and came back home. Yes, I felt like an asshole.
But the ice had broken in my head, and I knew that I was resolved. That I couldn't do this anymore. That, no matter what my current responsibilities, no matter which of the bees left to fan the queen in my absence would be screwed over, no matter if I ended up living in a gutter clutching my last remaining possession a small bead necklace that someone I really love had given me, I could not face any more of this life the life I had constructed, freely and of my own volition. I didn't care anymore.
All my life I've taken the easier road.
I remember quite clearly when I used to speak to myself, thinking that this is just means to an end. I would make some money and then start working to make some difference, in this place, habitat that we live in. I remember how I had debated with myself about the comfort zone and how dangerous it was.
I told myself, after I had taken his salary and spent it on good clothes, food , that I was doing the wrong thing. That I was wasting myself and my capabilities and dreams. I told myself, like a sage leaning on a staff beneath the sagging boughs of his oak along the side of my life's road, to beware of falling victim to the call of money. Money as savior. Money as happiness. Money as the goal.
I don't remember what I said back to myself. I don't remember clearly anything else that happened either before my questioning self appeared at my window nor after he left it on that day. But The Comfort Zone sounded not at all like something to be feared. It sounded like somewhere I wanted to be.
I have been living there forever. I have been ignorant of the passage of time and fallen as willing and eager victim to the call of lines of credit at 19% interest pressed in plastic, consumer consumption of the latest when the current would do, traveling away from problems a week at a time without worrying that they would still be there upon my return.
I have stood at the dark wood tables and spoken in a confident voice about things I couldn't care less about. I have kissed the asses and licked the feet. I have sold myself utterly and entombed my dreams and ambitions. I have moved from place to place in pursuit of nothing, and escape from everything.
And I am done with it now.
I am tossing the dice high, kids. I am casting fate to the wind. I am stepping off the rubberized grip of The Comfort Zone and cannon balling into the abyss of possibilities.
No, I do not have a nest egg. No, I do not have wealthy parents and friends to fall back on. Yes, it is all completely absurd and insane and fantastically stupid.
The door has opened on the side of the machine. I can see the light beyond. Is it heaven, or the abyss?
I am going to find out.