Scroll back up. It definitely will be worth the effort, I promise.
Look at that girl by the water-bed. What do you think she was doing at the time this photo was taken? Was she alone? Was she upset? What was going through her mind?
And that gentleman with the cigarette clasped between his fingers. The wrinkles around his face and that strain (almost like pain) in his eyes suggest he is not about to share smiles anytime soon. Or is he?
What about those seemingly Nepalese children? Are they rich? Or does the constant worry of filling their empty, rumbling stomachs cross their minds left, right and centre all day long?
Go through each photo one after the other, and you will realise, that while none of these people have anything in common, they share something even deeper. Something beyond the imagination of a shallow mind. Or an ignorant mind. Or a thankless mind.
They share a unique story. A unique life. Unique and personal experiences. Carved in their very faces, reflecting off their limping eyes, hanging precariously in their tears and hiding beneath the curtains of clothing.
Every being is different.
Every being has a story to tell. Every being is a writer in his own little world. And every being has readers. The only difference is, some read them printed as books, others printed on them. Like I do. Like I try.
Imagine you stumble across this great invention, which I like to refer to as the life switch. Imagine it as anything you like. A television remote controller. A button. A genie. Anything your imagination can concoct. But, just imagine.
And you decide to use this life switch. To see the world around you, as never before. To be that Polish boy you saw on the bus the other day. To become that City banker you overheard talking outside the restaurant the night before. That cab driver who told you he hadn't seen his children in years. Or your mother, who says she sacrificed everything to make your life comfortable.
Hell, you might even want to be me for a day or two.
Nevertheless, each switch will teach you something about a life you never had. A life you always longed for. A life you wondered about.
Well, you would ask, then what?
So we swapped places with someone we wanted to. We learnt about their experiences, work or otherwise...then what do we do?
I did want to say, in reply to this question, something on the lines of, "well, love what you have and blah...", but the honest answer is, only you would know what to do, then.
I might not want to spend the rest of my life speaking a language with phlegmatic issuances. You may beg to differ. It will depend.
We have been so unthankful lately, that we may at once leave everything at hand to rush off for that oh-so-ever-wanted place in the world, without even giving it a thought.
But, you know what...
Some people have already invented that switch. They can become whoever they like. Be wherever they wish to be. Others less fortunate, on the other hand, cannot.
And this year may be a new year for many. A year to correct wrongs. Undo the done. To turn over a new leaf.
For others, it is just another day. To plunder. To steal. To take...what is rightfully not theirs.
If 2010 will bring with it even more wars, killings, bloodshed and corruption...were we not better off being in last year?
If only we could freeze our life as a photograph and last for eternity...
Then, come what may, the storm, the gun, the vice...I shall not deter, shall not break, shall not stir. For, I shall be, and always be captured in that one moment.