Saturday, December 14, 2013

Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you Bharati Singha for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award. I'm honored.

A Confused Mind

Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers



Often..To function in society we create so many different personas... and after a point, it becomes so hard to separate our true selves from the personas we create. We lose our reality.
On second thoughts...does reality really exist outside the mind ? without a mind and a perception on the "real me" am I really existing ? What if reality as we knew it didn't exist but is just in our minds ??

Friday, November 29, 2013

Live In The Moment

Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers



Life is all about the choices that we make..and yet, far too much of our life is spent regretting those choices. We cannot go back in time and change the past but we can acknowledge and accept it. Being in denial never helps. The past is over and done with. Embrace the memories that you cherish, let go of the ones that disturb you. The future is not yet here..don't spend days, weeks and months planning for it. Enjoy the here and now.

Friday, October 11, 2013

I Am Loved


I sit on the terrace of my flat and I see the stars shine brightly. After so many cloudy days the clear sky is a welcome sight. I am reminded of that childhood poem:

Twinkle twinkle little star
How I wonder what you are

I remember reading somewhere when I was a child that when a person passes away, he/she becomes a star. I know now that it is not true and yet the child in me still clings to the thought. I see so many stars shining above and I like to believe that they are people who loved me in their lifetime and come out each night just to see for themselves that I am happy and doing fine.

I see my grandpa. I called him “Dasa”. I know most people remember him as a very strict person and they feared him, though I spent very little time with him, I remember that every time I was near him, I felt loved and protected. Beneath his hard exterior, I often glimpsed softness, a vulnerability, which was endearing.
Dasa, I may have never said it to you, I loved you.

I see my mom in law. I called her “Masi”. Whatever the difference of opinion we may have had, fact is, she took up for me whenever someone tried to bring me down. She was my shield and her passing away left a void.

Masi, home no longer seems like home without you.

I see my best friend Nisha. She was the sister I never had. I miss her phone calls, her constant messages, her calling me a “dofi” when I goofed up, her anger at anyone who dared criticize me in her presence. Hell, I even miss her loud laugh, her bad jokes, and her drinking and calling me just to piss me off.

Nisha, you left too soon. Sometimes, I pick up the phone and dial that number and my heart yearns to hear you say hello..someone does reply but it is never you..I hang up. I know your family sold off the house you lived in. I’m aware that the phone number is no longer yours..and yet at times I call you..

So many people, so many stars. They all come out at night. I gaze at them lovingly and I know I’m loved.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Tum Bhi Aaya Jaaya Karo


Tamam safhe kitabon ke fadfadane lage
Hawa dhakel ke darwaja aa gayi ghar mein

Kabhi hawa ki tarah tum bhi aaya jaya karo...
                                                                                Gulzar

I have always been in love with Gulzar Sahab and his poetry. He has a way with words, he weaves magic. His style of expression leaves me spell-bound. The rich imagery of his lyrics, the originality and aptness of his metaphors,  his tangential interludes of symbolism rooted in the reassuring earthiness of day-to-day experiences leaves one breathless. I can spend a whole day just listening to his songs. Who can forget words like:

"Ajnabi si ho, magar gair nahin lagti ho
 Wahem se bhi jo ho naazuk woh yaqueen lagti ho..."
 (Maine shaed tumhe pehle bhi kahin dekha hai)

Or

 "Hont kuch kehte nahin kaampte honton pe magar
 Kitne Khaamosh se afsaane ruke rehte hain
 Sirf ehsaas hai ye rooh se mehsoo karo
 Pyaar ko pyaar hi rehnedo koi naam na do...."

Or

"Koi waada nahin kiya lekin, kyun tera intezaar rehta hai
 Bewajaah jab quaraar mil jaae, dil baRa bequaraar rehta hai..."
(Jab bhi ye dil udaas hota hai, jaane kaun aas paas hota hai..)






Friday, October 04, 2013

An Overactive Mind


I have an overactive mind. There are times when my mind is totally at peace and blank but those times are rare. When I'm alone I think, when I'm with others I think, and many times when I'm in conversation with others, my mind wanders. At times I feel like I'm carrying a weight of thoughts all the time and I wish I could simply shrug off the burden and free my mind of them.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

The Ocean Therapy



I miss the beaches of Salalah.
I miss going to the beach in the evenings and sitting there in peace, letting the stillness envelope my thoughts. I love the ocean, the salty air, the warm sun on my face, the seagulls swooping down for bread crumbs, couples walking along hand in hand, children making sand castles, the distant voices of the fishermen..

Being away from the daily chaos - the traffic, the people and the stress of everyday life. Sitting there quietly looking out at the horizon and the endless ocean gives me a sense of freedom. The world stops for me as I experience a profound peace within.

The vastness of the ocean makes me realize how small I am and this knowledge in turn rips apart all the false egos that I unknowingly acquire in this world of pretences..Hence keeping me grounded to reality.

I love to walk bare feet on the beach too. The feel of the sand under my feet as the waves gently caress them. I walk shrugging away the worries of the world and simply taking in the beauty of it all…picking up different shells  and imagining what it must be like under the sea.  I soon lose myself, imagining mermaids and other mythical creatures.

It is amazing, how an hour or two at a quiet beach can make one feel as if the soul has been cleansed of the grub of everyday life. I call it the “Ocean Therapy” that I feel everyone must undergo once in a while.

Monday, September 09, 2013

Power of Love

“When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.” – Catherine Ponder.

I pick up the paper or turn on the TV and there are stories of road rage, a teacher punishing a 2nd standard student for not completing his homework by burning the child’s hand, a teenager in USA randomly shooting whoever comes across him in his high school for no reason whatsoever, and so on and so forth….

Why are people so aggressive these days ?

Life is full of people we don't necessarily like or get along with, but does that give us the right to physically or verbally abuse them ? Is anger that makes one lash out and hurt another ever justified ? I see people fly into a rage over such trivial and petty issues.

What really makes me sad is the inability in people to forgive. I've seen people being hostile and carrying grudges against others for years and I wonder why they can’t simply forgive and forget and move on in life instead of carrying that burden of hate and animosity in their hearts year after year.

All we need to do is respect ourselves and others around us and take responsibility of our actions and I’m sure once we do that we will be happier people and make others happy.

A person who remains bitter and angry ultimately poisons and damages his soul and only by learning how to forgive can one heal the soul and enjoy the beauty of love and life.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Amazing Childhood


Saw some kids messing hands, face and clothes in order to paint. None of their paintings made sense to me but to them they were great. The look of pure joy on their face at their creation was amazing...
Sometimes I feel an intense sadness for having grown up and experience deep regret for being so disconnected from the child that I was.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Gas Connection and The Rent Agreement


So I’m back in India, great. I love my country and I have often been homesick and longed to be back here among my own people. This post is by no means to make fun of or ridicule any person but rather to raise the issue of how inefficient certain people or agencies can be.

I enjoyed the first few weeks in my hometown with my family before I shifted to Pune. Since I had already lived in Pune for five years, I thought “Ok..settling down here again is a piece of cake ! All I need is a rented flat (a family friend had already arranged a furnished one), the shifting of my domestic gas connection, a decent internet connection, and the regular services of a maid, a laundry guy, the newspaper vendor etc. etc.”
So dear reader, it all sounds easy enough right ? Wrong !!

Hubby and I head out to the gas agency. After a 20 minute wait we get our chance to talk to a guy who politely says “ aage waale counter pe jaiye”. We go to the next counter and wait for another 20 minutes for our turn whereupon we hand over the transfer papers. The lady gives a very bored expression and asks where we are coming from. We reply, thinking “OK, finally it’s going to be done now”. The lady asks us for an address proof, an ID proof and 2 photographs. We are not in luck it seems. We have the ID proof (our passports) but we have yet to receive the rent agreement from the legal firm.

We call the legal firm where our call is transferred, kept on hold for almost 15 minutes after which we are informed that they will give the copy of the rent agreement only if the owner authorizes it ! We explain that the owner is abroad and we do not need the original, we just need a copy and we have a right to it, but our appeal falls on deaf ears. Frantic calls from our end are made to a relative of the owner who has been authorized in the matter, who in turn calls the legal firm. Finally they call and inform us that we should visit their firm and collect the copy. I blurt out in desperation “but your office is like 35 Kms. away ! could you not email it to us please ?”. But they remain adamant that we visit. We spend 1200 Rs. on a cab and finally get the address proof.

We go back to the gas agency with victorious expressions and hand over the documents. The lady takes out a blank form and informs us “ Ye form bhar do aur sath main ek 100 Rs ka affidavit bhi de do along with the documents.” WHAT ?? An affidavit ???

We ask some friends regarding this matter and they suggest we visit the court premises. We travel another 22 Kms and pay more cab fare. There we see some guys sitting out with typewriters. We approach them and they say they will charge 350 Rs for typing the whole thing. We agree. We get the affidavit and head back to the gas agency. Finally the documents are accepted and we are informed that we will get the gas cylinder in 4-5 days. We come out dead tired but happy regardless.

A guy standing outside who had been observing us coming and going takes a look at us and asks “kahan se shift hoke aaye ho sahib ?”
“Oman se” hubby replies.
“Tabhi itna ghoome…800-1000 Rs. kisi ko diye hote toh kaam yu hi ho jata..”
We are stumped !!!

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Back Home Again

“Coming back (home) is the thing that enables you to see how all the dots in your life are connected, how one decision leads to another, how one twist of fate, good or bad, brings you to a door that later takes you to another door, which aided by several detours–long hallways and unforeseen stairwells–eventually puts you in the place you are now.” ― Ann Patchett.

I'm back in Pune, or at least my physical self is. A part of me still resides in Salalah.
So much as changed in Pune. I see new roads, malls and shops..and yet nothing has changed. The air and greenery remain the same - refreshing as always. Friends calling all day long, invitations for dinners, the hearty laughter....yes i'm home again :)

The song from the movie Nikaah runs through my mind:

Wohi Ghadi, Wohi Pahar, Wohi Hava, Wohi Lahar
Nayi Hain Manzilen Magar, Wohi Dagar, Wohi Safar
Nazar Gai Jidhar-Jidhar, Mili Wohi Nishaaniyaan
Suna Raha Hai Ye Sama, Suni Suni Si Daastan..........

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Lost Art of Letter Writing


Today while going through my belongings, I found the fountain pen that I had misplaced long back. Seeing it brought about a surge of memories. Memories of the times I had spent writing letters to my loved ones. Yes, I did that, I loved writing letters. At times I would write poetry on beautiful stationery and send to my close ones on their birthdays etc. And I loved receiving hand written letters too. I still do, but people now do not have the inclination or patience to sit down and write letters. It is the era of email.

It’s not that I do not appreciate technology, I do. I do understand the importance of a fast delivered email. But to simply type a few lines and email to those close to you sounds so loveless and unemotional. Handwritten letters are so much more personalized. It shows that the person writing it took time out of his/her schedule especially for you.

Every letter has a part of the person who writes it. It has an emotion to express, providing us a glimpse into that person’s mind, thought process and feelings. The excitement of opening an envelope and reading a handwritten letter is indescribable.

One of my most cherished possession is a letter from my mom that starts with “Pyari beti Renu…”, I have no idea if she still remembers writing it but for me it is priceless. There are also a few letters from my husband where he had written beautiful poetry for me, we sometimes sit together and re-read them, recreating the magic.

I keep these letters in a box. Occasionally, I take them out and relive all those emotions. Today I sit and wonder, will my children ever have such a treasure box ? Will they have letters they can go back to in 20-30 years of time ? It’s time to buy a new ink pot and stationary. I need to sit down and create memories for my children. To tell them how much they mean to me.

My appeal to all – do take the time out to write to your loved ones. I assure you it will bring them enormous joy. All you need is a paper, a pen, an envelope and some stamps. And above all some loving words that come from the heart and gives warmth to the reader.

Monday, July 08, 2013

My Interview in Sakal Times



I'm honored and would like to thank Sonia K Kurup (Feature-Writer cum Subeditor - Sakal Times).
http://epaper.sakaaltimes.com/SakaalTimes/7Jul2013/Normal/page13.htm

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

India In The Eighties




India in the eighties was different from what it is now. Life seemed so uncomplicated and fun then, now, somehow we have preconceived notions about what fun should be, and we fail to derive pleasure out of the simple things in life.

There are so many memories and so many things I miss about my childhood or teenage life.

I miss not knowing  that a dropped ice cream cone is not the worst thing in the world.

I miss the Doordarshan’s  “Mile Sur Mera Tumhara”, Malgudi Days and Wagle Ki Duniya.

I remember and miss the long train journeys with mom and dad, the chaos on railway stations, arguments with the coolies, hot samosas with kulhad chai, and insignificant conversations with strangers.

I miss the groups of children of all ages playing on the streets and around houses - hide and seek, skipping, cricket, gilli-danda, and marbles.

I miss the sounds of various kinds of music from loudspeakers heard from different spots right from five in the morning till 3am on ganesh festival, independence day, navratri, shivratri etc etc.

I miss the ball games played with cousins where if ever the ball fell in the roadside gutter, it would be taken out and get thrown against the nearest concrete wall to dry without parents going ballistic.

I miss the older aunties haggling while buying anything and everything.

I miss the peddlers with their raw mango slices spiced with hot chilli powder and roadside pani puri and wada pav.

I miss seeing families of four (sometimes five) on a scooter, and nine people getting down from an auto rickshaw (I swear I saw that too once !)

I miss attending marriages all decked up in beautiful saris and colorful bangles and secretly glancing around to check out who all have noticed ! And the dancing on the road in a baaraat without caring if you dance well or not !

Thankfully I’m shifting back to India soon !

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Seeking Shelter

 

The bird came to my window seeking shelter from the rain. Reminded me of Rabindranath Tagore's words:

"Stray birds of summer come to my window to sing and fly away.
And yellow leaves of autumn, which have no songs, flutter and fall with a sigh..."

Sunday, June 30, 2013

O Majhi Re Apna Kinara


My attempt at singing O Majhi Re...

I have always been in love with Gulzar. I'm always amazed at his wonderful ability to put down feelings in words.This song from the movie Khushboo is one of the most beautiful soulful songs in Hindi films. 

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Forgotten Joys



It has been raining again, in fact, it rained all night. This morning while looking out of the window I spied my neighbor (a woman from Jordan) shouting at her four year old daughter for standing out in the rain. The child, oblivious to her mother’s irritation stood in the rain blowing soap bubbles and laughing as she watched those bubbles floating away. I watched her in fascination, rooted to the window…remembering this forgotten childhood activity and wondering when and where I had lost that childlike joy in life…the art of finding happiness in small and insignificant things in life.

A dam of childhood memories burst open, drenching me through and through.

I remembered floating paper boats in water puddles after a heavy rain.

I remembered climbing the tree outside the school premises in Port Moresby. Clinging to the branches, hiding up above while people passed by below.

I remembered wanting to be like Nancy Drew and observing people around me to improve my detective skills…!!

I remembered looking for small flat stones to skip on water ponds and betting with my brother on whose stone would skip three to four times over the water.

And amidst all those memories, I wondered..Why had I forgotten those small joys ? Why had I allowed myself to believe that they would never return ??

I have decided to go out in the rain next time it rains. To feel the rain on my face. To once again float a paper boat in the next puddle I see.

I have decided to live again.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Symphony Of Nature



"Raindrops Taste Like Tears Without the Pain" – Queensryche Band

It’s raining today. Here in Salalah, the people call this the “Khareef Season”. I love the rain more than any kind of weather. The sound of those raindrops against the window is one of the most soothing sounds in the world. I love the smell of rain and the wet sand. It’s so utterly refreshing and renewing. The city looks cleaner somehow, as if it has been washed off..taking away all the negativity that surrounds it’s daily life.

I sit by the window looking out…with a cup of tea in my hands, while a Faiz Ahmed Faiz ghazal sung by Mehdi Hassan plays softly in the room..

” Gulon mein rang bhare baad-e-naubahaar chale
Chale bhi aao ke gulshan ka kaarobaar chale…”

The wind makes the raindrops swirl in this direction and that..Like notes of music floating around echoing the symphony of nature. I am totally in sync with the rain…I feel its emotions…and I become the rain.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

On The Move Once Again


Once again I’m in the process of packing my bags and shifting. It has become the norm of my life. So many cities, such different cultures, different values. Every city has made me learn new things while I had to unlearn others.  I created a “Home” in every city that I lived in. Every time I shifted I left behind a part of me in that city. Sometimes I wonder, if I keep living this nomadic life, will I one day have anything left in me to leave behind ?

Often I’m homesick and look forward to my short visits to my hometown, and yet, whenever I visit my hometown, home no longer feels like home. The city has changed, the people have changed and the visits leave me disoriented. The city that I once knew, now resides just in my memories…and I’m left asking myself what I was homesick for.

I guess homesickness and nostalgia for me is more related to the relationships I share with people and certain incidents and time periods in my past, rather than location. I have created so many “homes” and I have so many memories, and yet, I truly have no fixed place I can call home and it leaves me wondering…can a person actually be homesick when one has no fixed address one can call home ??

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Fountainhead Characters


I have always been a great fan of Ayn Rand. Her books – “Atlas Shrugged” and “Fountainhead” have been my favorites.

I have noticed that knowingly or unknowingly, I always end up comparing most people I come across in life to the characters of Fountainhead. And it’s amazing how I find so many people similar to Peter Keating. The kind of people who take credit for other’s hard work and who are more worried about seeking approval of others instead of developing their own mind  who will do anything to please others in order to gain wealth and prestige.

Occasionally, I come across the Ellsworth Toohey types. The type who lust for power and despise the achievements of others, dedicating their life in  degrading other people’s talents and ambitions.

There are hardly any Howard Roarks left. The kind who have strong character and who never deviate from their principles or compromise on what they feel is right.

I once thought I had glimpsed a Howard Roark but I guess I was wrong. I have still to meet a Howard Roark.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Living Abroad

Living in a foreign country alone, away from your near and dear ones does that to you. However much you try to mix in, you remain an outsider. The strange language becomes a barrier, the different religion becomes a barrier, and yes, your own insecurities become a barrier too.

I crave the familiarity of my own people. The constant chatter that surrounded me, be it at home, or at the markets while shopping. I would visit the local store for bread, milk, butter etc and would be greeted with “ Kesi ho beti ? Ghar pe sab kese hain ?”.

The shop owners would not only know my dad, but my grandpa too. Mine was a small town. Everyone knew everyone it seemed. Loud music blared from the radios. The bhaaji-walas  shouting out loudly selling their vegetables from hand carts. Women bargaining and arguing, all in good spirit. These were comforting sounds. I would feel at home. I would feel safe and loved.

There are no small shops here, nor are there vendors pushing hand carts. People here go to big centrally cooled malls to buy even the smallest of things. Rows upon rows of goods displayed on shelves. A different shelf for different item. You do not have to ask anyone where something would be, there are sign posts telling you what lies in which section. People here do not interact asking you how you are. They stroll about in a hushed silence with glazed hypnotized expressions, eyes fixed on the goods. The people at the payment counters go about their work mechanically; their eyes blank, resembling robots. Once I had overheard a couple talking softly in Hindi while they crossed me and my instant reaction had been to run after them, to say “I’m Indian too. Did you not see me? Do you too long for India? Do you too have a family back home that you miss terribly? Do you also tell your family that you are “fine” and cry softly to yourself when no one is looking?” Yet I had simply stood glued to my spot staring at them until they turned a corner and disappeared from my sight.

It sometimes amazes me when relatives back home tell me in envious tones what a lucky person I am to be staying abroad. Lucky? Is that how they define loneliness these days?

My highlight of the day is the return of my husband from his work place. His “kya kiya saara din? Phone aaya koi India se?” and his chatter about his colleagues, his work. His welcome voice finally making cracks in the silence that surrounds me. The familiarity of my language greets me, lifting the fog of loneliness that surrounds me in his absence. His complementing me on the food reassures me. The smell of the Indian spices and desi ghee and curry envelope me lovingly, transporting me back in time to Ma’s kitchen and her incessant fussing over me. I finally feel at home, until the next day, when the silence descends on me once again.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

My First Liebster Award !

I have been awarded the Liebster award by Niranjan. Thank you !!



About Liebster in brief:

The Liebster Award is given to upcoming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. So, what is a Liebster?  The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.

The terms:

  • Each blogger should post 11 random facts about themselves.
  • Answer the questions the tagger has set for you, then create 11 new questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
  • Choose 11 new bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to pass the award to and link them in your post.
  • Go to their page and tell them about the award.
  • No tag backs.
Here are the 11 random somethings about me :

  1. I love sketching
  2. I love the smell of rain
  3. I tend to be a jack-of-all-trades, master of none
  4. I always set my alarm at weird times (e.g., 5:23 am or 5:47 am)
  5. I love puns and clever jokes and plays on words
  6. I have a deep rooted fear of darkness and hence I avoid visiting caves etc
  7. I dislike parties
  8. Books are not just “books” to me. They are conversations, places, pages, smells, looks etc. etc. I have never read an e-book
  9. I sing constantly 
  10. I’ve been told for most of my life that I’m too sensitive
  11. Cooking is my passion
Questions from Niranjan:

Q. Describe yourself in one word.
A. Impulsive.

Q. Why do you blog?
A. I blog and write to give coherence to my thoughts.

Q. What is the difference between a blog and a personal diary?
A. Blogs are online diaries. You can decorate the pages with different fonts, designs, colours etc. while personal diaries are traditional bound, handwritten thoughts.

Q. What do you want to change?
A. What do I want to change? I once read somewhere that if you want to change anything in your life you need to do the following: change what you’re doing or change your attitude. I guess I want to try that out and change myself.

Q. What do you like the most?
A. Mentally stimulating conversations.

Q. What would you prefer at any time in your life, love or money and why?
A. Love. Love can see you through the good and the bad times...I dunno if I could say that for money.. 

Q. What is your weakness?
A. I have many but if I had to choose, I would say it is my extreme need for organization, as sometimes it upsets others around me.

Q. Who is your role model and why?
A. My dad is my role model. He has always been a pillar of strength for me and I love him for being there for me through every single step of hardship that I've ever dealt with.

Q. Are you spiritual or religious or none?
A. I am deeply spiritual AND religious.

Q. What is your goal?
A. To travel and experience all that I can..to die with no regrets.

Q. If God asked you three wishes, what would they be?
A. That's a tough one..let me just quote Mirza Ghali here..."Hazaron khwaishen esi ki har khwaish pe dam nikle..bahut nikle mere armaan lekin phir bhi kam nikle.." :)

Now by the terms of the Liebster Award, here I name my 11 fellow bloggers followed by the 11 questions for them.

Ratna: http://www.myimperfectwritings.blogspot.in/
Indrani: http://isharethese.blogspot.com/
Fizaah: http://www.thepoetsalley.co/
Rakesh: http://almostsunday.blogspot.com/
Vinay: http://insidemeandu.blogspot.in/
Saumita: http://collectingliquidsunshine.blogspot.in/
Sautik: http://www.soutikchakraborty.blogspot.com/
Ashish: http://peaceandchaosinmymind.blogspot.in/
Jahid: http://jahidakhtar.blogspot.in/
Aravindan: http://aravindsanker.blogspot.in/
Rahul: http://www.simplyhuman.in/

Questions From me:

  1. What's one thing that most people probably wouldn't know about you?
  2. Name one thing that you want to do before you die.
  3. What quote/phrase do you live your life by?
  4. If you could go back in time and give your younger self advice, what would it be and why?
  5. What did you want to be when you were little?
  6. What's your favorite thing to do when your upset? 
  7. If you could play any musical instrument, which would it be ?
  8. Your favorite movie.
  9. What is the weirdest thing you have ever done ?
  10. What inspires you to write?
  11. Did you ever have an imaginary friend?
Enjoy !!!


Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Death Of Inspiration



The lone bench in the park has been my constant companion. I have spent hours sitting there just enjoying the peace, the scenery and the activity around me. The kids throwing a Frisbee, the woman walking her dog, the senior couple walking along the path holding hands, and the old man who sits there smiling and greeting all those who pass by him.

It was here in this park that I saw you sitting in a corner . Maybe the fact that you were not a regular here was what had made me notice you, or maybe it was the fact that you were sitting there with a notebook and pen, oblivious of the activity around you, staring at the blank page, that had made me curious.

You kept staring at the blank page. At times you would pick up the pen and hold it above the page but not write anything. At times you would look around in desperation, running a hand through your hair in frustration. It was then that we both noticed the bird sitting across you and staring at you. I saw the smile and a look of tenderness on your face. I could feel the sudden excitement in you. You picked up the pen and started writing furiously. Time and again you would look at the bird and write more. Suddenly, the bird flew. You looked at it flying away in despair. A look of pure desolation on your face.

You picked up your pen once again to write but after just a word or two you stopped. The anguish apparent. Once again the frustration crept back on your face . Finally, you gave up. You closed the notebook, got up and left.

I witnessed the death of inspiration.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

A Letter To Arnab Goswami



Dear Arnab,

I have been closely following the IPL/BCCI/Match-fixing/Betting saga. Fact is, the more I learn about the IPL the more I hate it. As for the BCCI, Its rotten through and through. But amidst all this was the news coverage on the Times Now News Channel.

I confess I am an ardent fan of yours and I love your way of asking direct questions and voicing your opinions (and I am a News Hour addict) but I must say I was worried at times and I prayed that Mr. N. Srinivasan would resign for your sake if not for the sake of cricket or the millions of fans expectation of it.
It got to a point where I had horrific images of you breaking things in the studio in anger. There were times when you pushed up your coat sleeves and loosened the tie and I worried if you planned to undo the tie and strangle or punch the pro BCCI guests  but thankfully that did not happen (maybe it was wishful thinking on my part :D)

There are certain people who claim that you are opinionated without knowing facts, or that mature journalism is about objectivity and blah blah blah,,my advise to them - chill, go take a walk, no one asked to watch this news channel ! Fact is, most people don’t have the guts to have an opinion and stand for it but you do that and in full public view. I admire you for it and hence I request you..please please please..get a grip on that rage and anger. We need you around to control those pathetic politicians who hardly ever attend a parliament session but never miss a chance to be on national television..even if it is to be humiliated and exposed.

Sunday, June 02, 2013

The Emoticon Effect



The Internet has affected our daily lives and the way we communicate with each other dramatically. Why am I blogging about this you ask ? Well, It all started with Yahoo Chats (remember those chat rooms, random chats  and weird Ids like hot_hunk, sadhu_in_jeans etc etc).

Yahoo chats had people addicted to them for years (yes yes I confess to being a part of that scene too, though I swear I never had an Id like that) and people were dependent on the emoticons to express or convey their feelings. But all that is in the past now. Yahoo has long back shut down the chat rooms and most people have gotten over the addiction of staring at their computer screens for hours and hours ( yes we’re now addicted to blogging, posting, voting and promoting posts…hehe)

Though we have got over the chats, what simply does NOT go away from our minds are the emoticons. A friend recently confessed that not just on text…she has to make an effort not to make her face go :O when she’s surprised or :)) when she finds something amusing.

And it’s not just the emoticons, we have still not gotten over the ROFLs and the LOLs ! How many of you are affected by these ?  How many of you  use acronyms/emoticons in your writing ?  Do you find yourself
writing  ";-)" or web acronyms when using pen and paper ? Own up people ! I’d love to know your thoughts !

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Party Sharty Haye Haye

Attended a party. Have a massive headache. Wish I had declined politely and stayed at home reading a book instead !

Call me anti-social, introvert or whatever. Fact is – I do not like parties. More so where people drink themselves silly. I am OK in small gatherings spending quality time with my close friends sharing meaningful conversations and friendly banter but I do NOT enjoy big parties where people act “proper”, conversations stays superficial and smiles remain sugary and fake.

I cannot stand the stupidity and futility of all the drunk people! It feels like a waste of time, it makes me depressed, and  it's always disappointing.

Maybe I’m just simply anti-social or weird or abnormal, but I hate such parties :(

Friday, May 24, 2013

Bipolar Disorder


A school friend connects with me after almost 22 years. I am shocked. The girl I knew was a happy –go-lucky person who lived life to the fullest. This woman was a shadow of that girl. I could see a few shades of her old self here and there but the life had gone out of her.

All through the conversation, I sensed this deep anxiety in her and a fear of abandonment.  After probing, she confessed that she had been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and that her husband had deserted her after the diagnosis. I was shocked.

Ever since I talked to her, I have been reading up on what exactly Bipolar Disorder is and to those who are interested, here are a few symptoms:

Panic attacks
Deep anxiety
Fear of abandonment
Mood swings
Erratic behaviors
Suicidal tendencies

A bipolar person needs love, understanding and the support of their loved ones and friends along with proper treatment. If you know someone who is bipolar, please support them, love them. Your friendship may mean the difference between life and death.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

My Weight Loss Woes




Me: Mirror mirror on the wall
        Have I put on more weight or what ?
Mirror: Err..you don’t really want to know Renu..
Me: Oh c’mon say what’s on your mind !
Mirror: Well you HAVE and you know it too..
Me: Mirror mirror kindly keep your mouth shut you moron !!!!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Hate & Indifference


In hating, a person is dedicating mental energy in hating you, which means at least they are thinking about you. Hate is a definite. It is an emotion, and it is closely related to love.
Indifference leaves you unsure. It  is more of an empty ache that cannot be filled. Hate hurts... but the sting of indifference lasts a lot longer.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Options & Priorities




Being caring and giving in any or all relationships is important and everyone likes to be appreciated for it sometimes. Everyone needs respect reciprocated.

Unfortunately, these days when you give too much or care too much in relationships, be it family relationships, friends or any other, it makes people appreciate you less rather than more. The more you care and give, the more likely people think of you as a doormat who will do anything to please. You are taken for granted and not much respected. You are often the one people leave behind while they move on in life, the one left wondering what went wrong.

I am not saying giving and caring in a relationship is bad. But doing too much of either will lead to you being alone. But then, how much is too much ?

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mera Bharat Mahan ??


I am shocked, pained and angered by the news of a five year old girl being kept captive, raped and brutally tortured  in Delhi.  Child rape is a truly hideous crime.

It is all very well to sing/ hear “ Saare Jahan se achha Hindustan hamara” or declare “Mera Bharat mahan” , but is my Bharat really mahan these days ? Is it really “mahan” when children are raped, and the common man is treated like dirt by our very own politicians and policemen ? Is it really “mahan” when all that our Prime Minister has to say over the incident is that he is “Deeply Disturbed” ? Is it “mahan” when the  police that should be protecting the citizens start offering  hush money to the parents and families  of rape victims  ? Is it “mahan” when our so called “Dharam Gurus” state on national TV that a girl is to be blamed if she gets raped ? Or is it mahan when our politicians justify a rape claiming that the women of India are “dented and painted”  ?

I’m sorry but my Hindustan is no longer mahan and my heart weeps for my country.  My message to this government -  the time to be "Deeply Disturbed" is now over. It is now time to be "Deeply Active". Do not test the patience of the common man.  We need answers, action and security. We want our mahan Hindustan back.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

More Than A Friend

I am in love with the songs by MLTR. Michael Learns to Rock is a Danish soft rock band. The simplicity of the lyrics, the soft music..its all so soothing and captivating. If any of you like this song, do check out the others too, all worth listening :)



You got me counting the seconds
It happens every time
I'm waiting for the moment
We can sit down and talk for a while
And every time that you're near me
My heart is running away
How can I tell you when words don't come easy
And there is so much I'm trying to say

I want to know that love will surround us
And you'll share it with me every day
Tell me you'll care for me now and forever
I'll give anything to hear you say
That I'm more than a friend

I'm gonna try in the future
Not to live in the past
I guess that I was a dreamer
If I thought it could ever last
But every time that I see you
You bring me out in the sun
How can I hide it when we are together
I just know that you're the only one

I want to make you see
Everything you are to me
Try to understand
I wonder if you can
The love I have for you
Will always be true

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Mora Gora Ang

A Song by Gulzar Sahab. My bad attempt at singing. Apologies in advance.



मोरा गोरा अंग लेई ले
मोहे श्याम रंग देई दे
छुप जाउंगी रात ही में
मोहे पी का संग देई दे

इक लाज रोके पैंयाँ
इक मोह खींचे बैय्यां
अब जाऊं किधर न जाऊं
मोहे का कोई बताई दे

बदरी हटा के चंदा
छुपके से झांके चंदा
तोहे राहू लागे बैरी
मुस्काए जी जलाई के

कुछ खो दिया है पाई के
कुछ पा दिया गवाई के
कहां ले चला है मनवा
मोहें बावरी बनाई के

मोरा गोरा अंग लेई ले
मोहे श्याम रंग देई दे
छुप जाउंगी रात ही में
मोहे पी का संग देई दे

-- गुल्ज़ार

Sunday, April 14, 2013

My Friend, My Diary




Writing and reading has always been my passion. Earlier I used to write in diaries, now I write on this blog. For me, this blog is my online diary. A friend recently asked me what I got out of writing in a diary.

“If something is on your mind, why not just talk it over with other people ?” She said.

It’s simple. My diary is always there when I need someone to share things with, it’s never busy. The fast pace at which we lead our lives, leaves people very little time to actually sit with another and share views/ thoughts/ experiences. My dairy always has the time to listen to me. It never judges or reproaches me and has no prejudice.  It has solved so many of my problems in the past as by writing down those problems, I’m forced to sit down and confront them and  solutions to problems often become apparent when the problems are in black and white.

As we grow old, our memories tend to fade out and get hazy. We only remember the major events and happenings, forgetting the smaller moments, but fact is, the stuff that is really interesting and made us who we are is often the little seemingly mundane details of life. We all will leave the world one day as millions before us have done, without leaving a trace of ourselves behind, completely forgotten. The written word will make us immortal. It will be the evidence that we were here. That we lived, loved, thought, breathed and died.

Our life too is like a diary with many pages, recording the good and bad experiences. Our dairies let us keep track of our past. Writing in them gives us a release, sitting down every evening and recalling the events of the day is very therapeutic and a yogic exercise.

Sometimes, I look back at my diaries from years ago and it makes me smile. I realize how much I've grown and matured. I feel everyone should try writing in a diary or journal. I do, and trust me..it helps my growth as a person and a better human being.






 

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

The "Like" Button


The “Like” button on Facebook…..yes its high time I talked about it. I use facebook  to stay connected with my family and friends . I have used the “Like” button often whenever I liked a photo a friend posted or read something that I truly liked or agreed with, but recently an incident on Facebook  left me shocked, speechless and highly irritated.

A friend’s father passes away and she remains absent from Facebook for some time. After a couple of weeks she comes back and sees so many messages on her Timeline left by friends inquiring where she had disappeared to. Instead of replying individually to each message she decides to explain her absence by posting a single message on her Timeline saying she had been absent because her dad had passed away.  What shocked her and me was that I was the only person to reply with a condolence message, 59 people had “Liked” her post !!!

It had me wondering…..do people actually read what they “like” or just “like” it for the heck of it ? I have had some people reminding me of how I had forgotten to “Like” something they had posted, while a few were actually upset and took me off their friend list because I hadn’t “Liked” !

“Like” was truly a beautiful word until Facebook ruined it. My request to fellow Facebookers – please…give a thought to what you’re “Liking” . Be sensitive to other people’s feelings.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Crossroads Of Life


Will it be this same city or will it be Pune ? Or has destiny planned something else for me ?
The clock is ticking and with every day that passes, my anxiety builds. I am at crossroads once again, unsure of what the future holds, looking down the different paths... unsure of what they may hold for me. Choices are never easy because ultimately, there will always be consequences. I can choose to stay still and do nothing in the comfort of deliberate ignorance, but I cannot ignore the consequences of staying still...

Sunday, April 07, 2013

I, Me, Myself



It amazing how many times I was asked yesterday if I was celebrating my birthday and if yes, how and where and with who. A few even felt bad for me because I had nothing planned and sympathized which left me highly amused. I wonder how they would react if i told them that I had a wonderful birthday. I celebrated it with myself for the most part. I read a book, I heard some great music, I wrote a poem, and I sang to myself. The later part of the day was spent with hubby.  Meaningful conversations, shared jokes, laughter, peace and harmony. It was a day well spent.

I have always been an introvert. Often people around me mistake that for my being indifferent, aloof or worse still arrogant. Fact is, I am most comfortable with me. People often confuse the word "alone" with "lonely". I am alone NOT lonely. There is a difference :)

I feel every person should have a "me" time. For me, the need for solitude is a given. Periodically, I need to retreat and indulge the hermit that resides in me. Being alone is imperative for my sanity, growth and understanding of  myself. I do try to spend time with others and be as social as I can be because I am aware that if I spend too much time alone with myself, I might begin to feel disconnected from others around me,  but beyond a point,  being social drains me. I get antsy after lots of time spent with others - simply because I need time to reflect and think and do things on my own and in my own way.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

The Birthday Post

A HUGE thank you to everybody who sent me birthday wishes. I've NEVER ever had so many birthday messages and each one has made my heart grow a little bigger each time. I'm so so touched. Thank you all so much :)

Here are a few things I would love to do this year - My wish list ( a few may be weird and not sound possible BUT as Mirza Ghalib said " Dil ke khush rakhne ko ghalib ye khayal achha hai...." ).

  • Be happy.
  • Throw a dart at a map and travel to wherever it lands.
  • Meet Gulzar Sahab. 
  • Take part in the tomato festival in Valencia (Spain) where an estimated 150,000 tomatoes are flung everywhere and at everyone.
  • Laugh until I cry.
  • See the pyramids.
  • Have my book published.
  • Make a few politicians eat crap sandwiches.
  • Put a message in a bottle and throw it in the sea.
  • Be pampered. 
  • Spend a night on a house boat at the backwaters of Kerala. 
  • Make sand castles on the beach. 
  • Cross a country on a bicycle.
  • Be happy.
And here is one of my favorite songs to celebrate this day. Enjoy !!!

video

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Walls



Sometimes, we build up emotional walls around us . It does not happen overnight. No one is born with these walls. They get built up gradually. Situations happen, trusts are broken, or you face unwarranted criticism and disrespect, and with each event a brick is laid, and brick by brick these walls gets built up.  Layer after layer, thick and strong walls.

These walls do not protect us from getting hurt, but yes, they prevent people from seeing that hurt. They prevent people from seeing the vulnerable being that we are. Most times, people perceive us as cold and indifferent because they cannot look beyond the walls or penetrate them. These walls protect us. We remain safe, secure, protected and shielded…and very very lonely too.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Paid Media And The Likes


I  turn on a news channel to get updated on what is happening in my country and what do I see ? A certain Mr. Dutt sobbing and declaring how he will not apply for mercy. Great, I switch on to another news channel and all I get to see is this live debate on the same Mr. Dutt. There are people arguing, shouting, and abusing each other over the so-called mercy plea. Sigh…I decide to give it a last shot and switch over to yet another news channel and instead of news, I get to see this so called Mr. Dutt’s entire life story. 

I have nothing against Mr. Dutt, infact I have enjoyed a few of his films. He is a celebrity and I do understand the media’s interest in him, but it is the media’s obsession that irritates me. I feel they have gone over-board with their non-stop 24/7 coverage. 

At the same time I’m amazed at how the media is conveniently ignoring the one person who has put his life at risk this Holi to give color to our (the common man’s) lives. Yes, I am talking about Mr. Arvind Kejriwal.

Arvind Kejriwal – A man of substance. Mahatma Gandhi once said “Be the change you want to see in the world” and in my view, we finally have this one guy who actually lives by this saying. It is all very easy to talk about and criticize  a corrupt system, but how many of us actually go out and do something about it ? Yet here is a guy who is willing to dirty his hands in order to give us a cleaner, better, and functional society. Instead of applauding him and his efforts to change a system that has gone rotten, the media prefers to act like a paid mouth piece of certain political parties, hence the public does NOT get to hear about Mr. Kejriwal but are forced day after day to know what Mr. Dutt feels, what Mr. Dutt says and what Mr. Dutt decides



Sunday, March 24, 2013

TV Anyone ?

After three hours of studying for my thesis work, I decide to take a break and switch on the TV in the hope that I'll be refreshed and entertained. Do I get entertained ? NO !

I have to admit there are no real "entertainment" shows on the Indian TV channels anymore. All one gets to see are the so called annoying vulgar "Comedy Shows". Humor is an amazing way to connect to one another and enjoy spending time with people. However, The jokes on these shows are becoming more and more vulgar, causing kids to be exposed to sexual subjects much earlier than they are ready. Intelligent, worthwhile comedy is a thing of the past. The fact that our society is willing to go along with such lame pathetic vulgarity and laugh says more about how low we've sunk than it does about the comedy itself. I really really really miss the good old "Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi" and "Nukkad" days.

And lets not forget the music channels. All we get to see and hear are vulgar songs like: Munni, Sheila ki jawani, Halkat jawani, Fevicol, Imported kamariya etc. I am so totally fed up of hearing these songs on TV, in restaurants, at marriage functions and social gatherings. I truly believe they are an assault to one's sensibilities. The people who wrote/sang/made these songs should be booked under the obscenity act ! My heart longs for "Binaca Geetmala", "Chitrahaar" and "Chhayageet".

And how can we not talk of the daily dose of Tv serials. This ridiculous trend started with Miss Ekta Kapoor  who came with the sole intention of corrupting the brains of the young generation (mostly women). These serials, once they are on air, simply do not end !! The characters have a mind of their own and refuse to get old hence the grandma looks the same as her college going grand daughter. The women sleep in all their finery. The men are mostly just props and extras who earn millions without working. All stories eventually become the same story and everyone indulges in extra-marital affairs. The characters die and re-appear at their own will, making a mockery of the audience.

I feel nostalgic about shows like "Malgudi Days", "Wagle Ki Duniya", "Ulta Pulta" and music videos like "Mile Sur Mera Tumhara".....

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Bridges of Madison County


I have a project to finish and submit and the deadline makes me nervous but despite that I ended up with a novel that I've already read earlier. I know I know, you’re probably wondering why I would read a book two times.

The book is “The Bridges of Madison County” by Robert James Waller.
I first read this book around eight years back and I remember loving it even then.  If you're a miserable cynic, you'll hate it. I am NOT a cynic.

A lot of people have labeled it as just another mushy romance. People can say whatever they want, but I could almost feel the anguish and intensity of the love this book describes.

I wept for a good half hour when I finished this book. To all you romance book lovers out there, have a go, I’m sure you’ll love it !

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Silence



The last two years I had been somewhat homesick and longed to return to my roots. I had envisioned a future of peace, love, and harmony, but I guess that dream will remain a distant one for now.

I had always been an introvert, comfortable and secure in my shell like a turtle. I had an inclination to let my mind open rather than my mouth but people misunderstood my silence, assuming I was indifferent, cold, distant and unapproachable. To me silence is a universal language. The silence of an individual who is not speaking suggests emotions or reactions too profound for words. Silence is everything and nothing. Silence is misunderstood.

I had to make an effort to come out of my shell, breaking away the walls I had built around me. I made a conscious effort to interact with all, in the hope that I would be “accepted” which in turn would result in strong bonding with my near and dear ones, but life it seems had other plans. My opinions were taken as being rebellious, my assertiveness as arrogance, and my suggestions as lies.

Respect and love is a gift that people have to give freely and reciprocate. It is impossible to please everyone in life and I have learnt this the hard way. I realize that I have to stop explaining myself to people who have judged me harshly on the basis of a false reality that is completely invented.

I realize now that I was better off with my silence. Perhaps silence means defiance or detachment, or submission to those who dominate, I feel silence defines itself and a silent person can be everything and anything. Silence cannot be pictured, framed, measured, confined, or defined. My silence is a piece of open land, providing a place of unrestricted mental growth where I water my healthy thoughts and weed out the negativity before I indulge the spoken word.

Yes, I’m nostalgic for the past but I’m once again ready for a new beginning. It's time to leave behind the missing pieces, and rebuild from scratch, It’s a season of finding myself. I have a loving husband who completely understands my silence and I have my own convictions and thoughts to accompany me on this new path.

And if you want to walk with me, you may. I'd love the company. But do not expect me to become a pawn again in your brutal verbal power games.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Veronica Decides To Die

Recently read "Veronica Decides To Die" by Paulo Coelho.. An amazing book. It questions the meaning of madness and celebrates individuals who do not fit into patterns society considers to be normal.  It made me think...Sometimes it is those who we consider insane that are truly wise, and they are the ones who know how to live life to the fullest.

Life is short so live it the way you want to; don’t be scared to follow your dreams even if everyone else thinks they are absurd, if it gives you happiness then it’s all worth it.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Awarded !!!


I have been awarded the "Beautiful Blog Award" by Shubhankar Kalra !! Thank you so much, its truly heart warming :) What would I do without you friends :P

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Bawara Mann Dekhne Chala Ek Sapna...


One of the songs that touches not just your heart, but soul too..


बावरा  मन  देखने  चला  एक  सपना
बावरे  से  मन  की  देखो  बावरी  हैं  बातें

Streets we have never walked on
Windows we have never opened
Hands we have never held
Dreams we shall never ..never see again

Lives we have never lived
Hopes ..we have never realized
Fires we have never lit
Loves we shall never .. never make again

I hear those strange whispers again...

बावरा  मन  देखने  चला  एक  सपना
बावरे  से  मन  की  देखो  बावरी  हैं  बातें

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Vyas Ki Jana Main Kaun !!


I visit the Omantel office to inquire about the status of my land line phone. I’m asked to fill up a form. I get my pen out and start filling up the form. A guy next to me holds a similar form in his hands and stares at it. He alternates the stares between the form and me. Finally I ask:

“Some problem ? Can I help you ?”
“I speak English, but I no read knowing, I write with help so you telling me” he replies
“Aah….” I finally understand, and decide to help him.
“Write your name where it says NAME”
He writes his name.
“Ok..tick the box that says MALE” I tell him.
He glances at my form and gives me a hard look.
“You write female, I write female” He says ( I guess he thinks I’m intentionally giving him false information)
“No no….I am female and you are male” I explain.
“You female, I female.” He says with a stubborn look on his face.
Sigh...I try once again.
“I am a woman, so I am female. You are a man, so you are male.”
Now he starts looking annoyed
“Ok, I male, you are male, if you female, I female ! Same write !”

By this time I’m almost confused and wondering what I've let myself into. I frantically look around for help and see another guy. I ask him if he knows the local language. His reply is affirmative. I request him to help this guy and he obliges.
I get back to my own form and almost tick the MALE section before I realize my mistake. Groan…I’m almost facing a gender crisis of sorts now ! I submit the form and run out of the place fast before I start wondering if I am a female or a male !!!!

Monday, March 04, 2013

True Love...??

Had an interesting conversation with a friend. She kept talking about how "true love" was rare and hard to find, and it left me wondering what "true love" actually is...

I feel "true love" is a rather unrealistic goal in the sense most people take it to be. It is somehow all-consuming and seems to imply that you make ONE person the sole center of your life. Not only is that not possible, it's not healthy. We need "people", not "a person", to be complete.

True love is about becoming pure and one with existence and finding love within yourself, not outside of yourself.

Most people are selfish. Love is selfless and unconditional. Majority of women would NOT love a man without a job. I often hear men saying they prefer slim good looking women. People put 'conditions' on others and don’t realize that as soon as you have a 'type', you are not open to love.  When you throw away your 'list' of standards and qualifications, then you are open to love, and unless you find someone who has also thrown away their 'lists' and pre-conceived notions of love..love will never happen.

Friday, March 01, 2013

Verbal Abuse


Life amazes me. People amaze me.

I often wonder why some people are so bitter in life. I see them feel better about themselves by putting down others. Had a firsthand experience of a dual personality. Saw two facets of a person – a warm loving person one minute, and a mean abusive one the next…left me feeling wary and rattled.

I was stunned to discover that this individual actually believes a false reality that is completely invented
.
Verbal abuse leaves no physical scars, but the psychological damage it causes can last a lifetime.



Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Random

At a certain stage in life, things become set in their ways a little too comfortably and you don’t find a reason to change. I am comfortable.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Dislike Dogs


I DISLIKE DOGS.

There..I finally said it !! High time too ! I’ve always wanted to declare it publicly, but for some reason, saying this is a definite no-no in our society these days. As soon as you utter the taboo words “I dislike dogs”, you’re taken for being a cold, cruel, monstrous person who is unemotional and devoid of love.

I was invited by a friend for dinner last night. Upon ringing the doorbell the friend opened the door, before I could say a “hi”, a dog was all over me barking, pawing, licking and terrifying me in general.  To make matters worse, the friend was laughing.

“He gets so excited when someone visits ! Sit Fido sit !”

“Yes well...can’t you sort of...tie him up or lock him in somewhere while I’m here..?” I ask in a feeble trembling voice.

She looks deeply hurt, shocked and pained. I am made to feel as if I have requested Fido’s execution.

“He’s only hugging you. He won’t do anything. Sit Fido baby!” she replies in a voice that hints I have displeased her.

Fido does NOT get locked, rather, throughout the meal, he sits right beside me with his tongue hanging out, his eyes staring at me with a triumphant glint that reminded me how I was at his mercy.

I wonder, why do dog owners impose their dogs on everyone ? Why can’t they understand that if they love their dog that’s great, but their neighbors or visitors may not share their enthusiasm. I know this lady who’s dog often runs after the neighbors kids, snarling. She laughs and says “he’s just playing.” Is her dog’s entertainment so important to her that it makes her blind to other people’s discomfort ?

The worst part is that certain dog lovers who don’t like certain things that I like, never fail to voice out their opinion and expect me to understand their viewpoint, and yet, the second I say I dislike dogs they act like I am the scum of the earth and ostracize me.

The world has gone dog crazy.  People love and care more for their dogs than they would a fellow human being. Referring to dogs as "kids" and giving them human names. People are willing to pay to feed their dogs and buy all these other fancy things but they won’t feed the homeless.

Most of the time, I force a smile so as not to cause offence to dog owners, but the truth is that I don’t like dogs. I never have and I never will.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Unfinished Stories


I have so many unfinished stories. A few I left unfinished due to lack of motivation, some due to writer's block and others simply out of boredom.

Sometimes  there are too many characters clamoring in my head to be let out. Some characters are never committed to paper, however much we may love them and I truly feel sorry for them. I honestly feel everyone deserves a chance to be heard. I feel their pain and hear their silent cries...Some characters are flawed, and yet I love them. However hard I may try being detached from the characters I get emotionally attached to some of them.
My friend Mehreen says "But they are just that - fictional characters. You cant love them !"
How do I explain to her that It's a wonderful experience when we are able to identify and consciously bond with a character who exists between the written pages, because that's when life is exchanged.

What does bother me though is that beyond a point some characters become all too real. They get a life of their own. They take over the plot.
Devyani is one such character. Even though she's purely fictional, writing about her scares me. I have always been in awe of this character. I fear that once I commit her to paper she'll take a life of her own. I fear of what will happen if she decided to bring out her opinions, desires and dreams on paper. At every turn she has made her presence felt strongly and helplessly I bowed down to her.
I guess sometimes the story's characters know better what needs to happen than we their creators do. And sometimes like thoughts, some stories are better left unfinished. Sometimes not having an ending does not matter....

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Absence makes the heart grow fonder


There is a famous saying "familiarity breeds contempt". Sometimes, we should give a person the gift of missing us so that once again they will be reminded of the reasons they loved and had us in their life.
Currently reading Kumar Vishvas's Poetry:

koi deewana kehta hai koi paagal samjhta hai.. 
dharti ki baichani to bus baadal samjhta hai.. 
tu mujhsai door kaisi hai mai tujhsai door kaisa hu.. 
ye mera dil samjhta hai ye tera dil samjta hai..

mohabat ek ehsaaso ki paawan si kahani hai.. 
kabhi kabira deewana tha kabhi meera diwaani hai.. 
yahan sab log kehte hai meri aakho mai aansu hai.. 
jo tu samjhe to moti hai jo na samjhe to paani hai..

Monday, January 21, 2013

Mein Tainu Pher Milan Gi


Been listening to this poem by Amrita Pritam recited by Gulzar. This has been one of my all time favorites. I've always been moved by the sheer beauty of the words. There is something captivating..heart touching about this poem.

Main Tenu Fir Milaan Gi
Kithey? Kis Tarah? Pata Nai
Shayad Terey Takhayul Di Chinag Ban Ke
Terey Canvas Tey Utraan Gi
Ya Khowrey Terey Canvas Dey Utey
Ikk Rahasmayi Lakeer Ban Ke
Khamosh Tenu Tak Di Rawaan Gi

Yaa Khowrey Sooraj Di Loo Ban Ke
Terey Rangaan Wich Ghulaan Gi
Yaa Rangaan Diyan Bahwaan Wich Baith Ke
Terey Canvas Nuu Walaan Gi
Pata Nai Kiss Tarah? Kithey?
Par Tenu Zaroor Milaan Gi

Yaa Khowrey Ikk Chashma Bani Howaan Gi
Tey Jeevan Jharneyaan Da Paani Udd-da
Main Paani Diyaan Boondaan
Terey Pindey Tey Malaan Gi
Tey Ikk Thandak Jahi Ban Ke
Teri Chaati Dey Naal Lagaan Gi
Main Hor Kujh Nai Jaandi
Par Aena Jaandi
Ke Waqt Jo Vii Karey Ga
Aey Janam Mairey Naal Turey Ga

Aey Jism Mukda Hai
Tay Sab Kujh Muk Jaanda
Par Chaityaan Dey Dhaagey
Kaainaati Kana Dey Hundey
Main Onhaan Kana Nuu Chunaan Gi
Dhaageyaan Nuu Walaan Gi
Tey Tenu Main Fair Milaan Gi…

Amrita Pritam.

I will meet you yet again
How and where? I know not.
Perhaps I will become a
figment of your imagination
and maybe, spreading myself
in a mysterious line
on your canvas,
I will keep gazing at you.

Perhaps I will become a ray
of sunshine, to be
embraced by your colours.
I will paint myself on your canvas
I know not how and where –
but I will meet you for sure.

Maybe I will turn into a spring,
and rub the foaming
drops of water on your body,
and rest my coolness on
your burning chest.
I know nothing else
but that this life
will walk along with me.

When the body perishes,
all perishes;
but the threads of memory
are woven with enduring specks.
I will pick these particles,
weave the threads,
and I will meet you yet again.

Amrita Pritam.