It has been three days since I had gone to the gym. Three idle days of sitting in bed, reading and watching.
Today I went to the gym, it was energetic. It is a small gym with three equipments and some weights and a bounce ball in the building on the same floor as I live .
Nine huge glass windows were mounted to one side of the gym and a plain white wall on the other. The treadmill among the other gym equipments faced the windows giving me the opportunity to look out at the people on the streets indulging in their routine and/or activities.
I have a specific time when going to the gym here. Eleven A.M to Twelve P.M. I spend around an average of Forty minutes at the gym. During this time, I watch new and old people on the streets do their thing.
I am not much of a good observer. I just look at what the other people see. I see but not observe. I am trying to improve on that. So when at the gym, I teach myself by setting people as targets so I learn. I cannot deduce like Sherlock Holmes or Doctor Watson but they do teach quite a bit. I just let my mind do the bare minimum with some context either given in by the environment or by my mind.
When in the gym, I keep on some music or a podcast so that I tend not to strain my eyes looking at the screen of the phone which I do everyday every hour. So just during these Forty minutes, I let my eyes prey the world outside.
I notice what the people do. I feel like a hunter stalking its prey but not deciding to act on it. Instead just looking outside and watching, keeping it all to myself. I take note of the time when the vans come around and I would like to deduce for what purpose they come. I deduce it by the logo on the van. Pretty easy work. I like to keep my mind occupied with minuscule details like these.
Today I went to the gym at 10:50 AM. As usual, I watch the old and new people. What always catches my eyes are a pair. There are always those two men sitting on the ground sometimes standing indulging in conversations or sometimes resting.
I only see them there till I leave. I do not know what they do after. All this while I have been coming, I have never witnessed them leave during the time I spend in the gym.
I always wondered what brought them there at this specific time. I am assuming they were brought there by the obligations of their job. I would like to think of a higher purprose that brought them there, everyone who was brought there during the time I was there.
As always when I am on the treadmill, I watched them keenly trying to decipher why they were here. They wore Red shirts with Green luminous bands imprinted on the shirt around their arms and had black pants on.
I figured they were some sort of workers, but of what vocation, I could not figure that out. It would have been easy considering how one could learn about the purpose of different uniforms, but I rather not.
I tried to figure out the nature of the conversation they were having right now. The guy on the left had various hand movements going on. It seemed as if he was explaining some concept or a joke to the man, colleague or perhaps his friend on his right.
I could not understand what expression each of them had fixated on their faces because they wore big hats and looking down on them from a height, it was nearly impossible to figure. So I could only deduce. I say a joke because I could see the man smile a bit even if he had the big hat on.
After a brief of Ten minutes, they stood up and went near the big can that ressembles a canister but worn out and rusty. Then I saw a big white garbage truck come along and these two men placed the big can onto the rear holders and the garbage was dumped into back of the truck. As soon as the the truck completed the job, they hopped along the sides of the truck and went away.
That was it.
My keenful watching was over. Why did the truck decide to come at this specific time today? On the other days, I never saw the truck but today, I saw it. Why did it decide to rob me of the pleasure of figuring out the story of them?
I could have assigned a nice story with some rich context and background but I was robbed of it. Now I have to hunt for other regular people who stick to their routines and not have a satisfying conclusion so I can create my own story for them.
There is some comfort in trying to figure out the story of strangers. There is a better comfort when assigning your own story to them with your mind.