The setting sun, the rising moon, the breeze flowing gently as ever, the ever still sky; the magical dusk had an intoxicating effect. It was sad and comforting at the same time. Ends are always sad. But it felt like the sadness for an unknown reason. The comfort was in the fact that now the world can finally rest. The triumphs and defeats of the day did not matter. Or so he thought.
He had to love the highway he was walking on. It gave him the assurance that the road will not end abruptly in the middle of his favorite song playing on his iPod. Stillness was all pervasive. Vehicles passed him by with a swift. Their motion seemed to get blended with stillness. Some slowed down. He could feel the eyes of people inside them looking at him strangely. He was walking on a highway.
He found himself very aware of the sun finally dying and the moon trying really hard but still not able to light the night enough. It was left at the mercy of stars.
Another truck passed by. He felt the chill of retreating winter. It was enough for him to notice the makeshift bonfire in a far corner of the road. A lone figure sat hunched on one side. He took that figure for a truck driver and moved forward in anticipation of a friendly talk with a stranger. He always used to find solace in such talks.
He did not realize that hunched figure was a woman until he was very close to the fire. The sudden realization made him freeze in his tracks. He could not move forward. Neither could he retreat. Her pale face shone in the pale light. She was not looking at him. His eyes tried to distinguish her skin from her clothes. They had both turned dirt brown. Her long unruly tresses could have been black or gray. The only color he could see in them was brown.
What was a woman doing on highway sitting alone? Was she young? Did she seem starved? Was she beautiful? She could have been beautiful.
Questions swarmed his mind. They were contrasted by the indifference.
He turned back and started walking hurriedly. He wanted to reach home soon.