City Hangout – The Heart-Break Destination, Buddha Gardens
After falling out of love.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
Here is a place for those who have just broken up with their lovers, whose hearts are heavy with sorrow, and who want to pamper that mood. It is a bench in central Delhi’s Buddha Jayanti Park close to a rain shelter, near the garden’s entrance. At this time of the year, as the city is gearing up for winter, this will remain a despondent spot for another few months.
The bench lies right under an Amaltas tree. During Delhi’s summer, this is one of the most beautiful spots in the city. The yellow flowers of Amaltas fall on the bench and the ground about it, turning the place into a kind of dream Switzerland. During summer indeed, this is a place one ought to visit with one’s lover.
But summers are nothing but memories now. The Amaltas flowers are long dead, the tree looks like any other insignificant tree, and that same bench under it feels bleak. The ground is littered with dry leaves that make a crackling sound when you step upon them.
Only those who have seen this bench in the summer can empathise with its present desolation. Thus is the heart when it has been deprived of what used to make it full of life.
On sitting here now, the world feels melancholic. If you sit long enough, however, you might spot a lively squirrel running across the grass, clambering over a rock, its face fleetingly looking up at the sky. The little animal will then jump farther and run away from sight. Nothing decisive happened but the heart got distracted for a moment. Now you might want to look for that bird whose happy hum is escaping from one of the trees.
You will inevitably notice the romantic couples—yes, the rest of the world seems luckier—passing by the bench. And that might hurt.
But by the time you shall step out of the park, the heart will be more accepting of its fate, and breathing softly with shards of hope for the future. After all, the bench will again turn golden-yellow next summer.
Place for the broken-hearted