Evening time. Delhi domestic airport. As many people in casual clothes as suit & ties - upcoming long weekender crowd.
Travelers were forming a queue at Terminal no. 12. Usually, hawk eyed travelers keep a look out for incoming inconspicuous elbows and the wily side steppers. But it was different this time. Many were sheepishly staring towards someone. But only briefly. They would consciously then reign in their gaze, back into forward nothingness. The curiosity was overwhelming their resolve though. The heads would turn ever so slightly back towards this one person. People desperately were trying to feign indifference.
The man in question was a short guy with a slightly largish head. His skin seemed like a battle ground. His hair was colored dirty bronze.
Another person with him had just left. He had touched the celebrity's feet before leaving. No doubt the celebrity is used to people fawning around him. The celebrity in question was a famous comedian. His movies are largely the mass nonsensical ones - often in blue collar roles or as the hapless sidekick.
He carries his image's class lightly. He perhaps can't talk english all that well, but that doesn't faze him. But the English speaking airport crowd did seem fazed with his presence. They obviously knew his work. They were suppressing smiles and appreciation.
And he would meet a gaze, any gaze, with a smile.
what a beautiful smile. brief. distant. yet magnanimous.
It was more than a smile actually. It was a key that unwound the contorted hearts.
His smile, uncorked smiles & lightened gestures.
Everyone had a secret laughter behind the public smile. We were replaying in our head's, our favorite comical scenes featuring him. Some gushingly shook his hands, while others laughed out and tried to play charade pointing in memory to one scene or the other.
Everyone was happy to have a story to tell later. They met a celebrity and he was awesome.