Chapter 26: The Circle Can Be Broken
But when I went into his house I could not believe it; he had so much junk collected that there was no place to live. The house was big, but his collection was bigger - and a collection which was absolutely stupid. Anything that he could find in the market he would purchase. I asked him, “What are you going to do with all these things?”
He said, “One never knows, some day one may need it.”
“But,” I said, “where is one going to live in this house?” So much furniture of all ages.because the Europeans had left the country so they had to sell all their things. He could not have enough; he managed to purchase anything, things which he did not need.
A car was standing in the porch which always remained standing because it was too old, broken. And I asked him, “Why don’t you throw it away? At least to clean up the place..”
He said, “It looks good in the porch.”
All the tires were punctured - it was of no use. Whenever you had to move it from here and there, you had to push it, pull it back. And it was there, rotting. He said, “I got it at a very reasonable price. It belonged to an old woman who used to be a nurse here and who has gone back to England.”
I said, “But if you were interested in purchasing a car then at least you should have purchased a car which moves.”
He said, “I am not interested in movement. My bicycle is perfectly good.” And his bicycle was also a marvel. You would know that he was coming from one mile away, the bicycle made so much noise; it had no mudguards, no chain cover - it must have been the oldest bicycle made. It had no horn.
He said, “There is no need for a horn. It makes so much noise that at least for one mile ahead people are already giving way. And it is a good thing, because it cannot be stolen.”
I said, “That is strange. Why can’t it be stolen?”
He said, “Nobody else can ride on it. It has been stolen twice, and the thief was caught immediately - because it makes so much noise, and everybody knows that it is my bicycle, so people caught the thief and asked him, ‘Where are you taking the bicycle?’
“I can leave it anywhere. I go to see a movie - I don’t put it on a bicycle stand, because then you have to pay money. I put it anywhere, and it is always there - when I come back it is always there. Everybody knows that it is a trouble. And even if you can get it to your home you cannot ride on it in the city - you will be caught. So it is better not to bother with it.” He said, “It is a rare specimen.”
I said, “The way you describe it, it looks like it.”
And he had all kinds of things in his house.broken radios, because he could get them cheap. He was a Jaina and he had a broken statue of Jesus Christ on the cross.
I said, “What have you purchased it for?”