Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Thoughts Back Home

Thank you all, for missing me! S and I came back last night at about 3 am and I'm all cranky with sleep. I will write about my meet-the-people trip later but just a few thoughts before I nap.

  • Among those spending the Republic Day Weekend in Dubai, there are some who do not want to be seen doing this (may be they told the friends that they were sailing in South of France). Hence, can typically be heard making such conversations as they deplane, to dissipate their suddenly LS image : Isn't it so artificial ... I just don't feel like going out the airport! Pray tell me, you did not know where it was headed when you got onto this flight? Neena called and said she has rented a villa South of Istanbul or may be it was France, I told her we were very busy or would have joined ... I tell her only this - it's all cool. We understand. You don't want to be seen as a Dubai-going person, but then these are recessionary times - be easy on yourself!
  • I was pleasantly surprised that the TV had our very own Doordarshan channel! I realized that watching Republic Day parade on Doordarshan and waiting for the Birla Balika Vidyapeeth Band (better known as the Pilani girls band) still gives me the same high. Its my school (one of the many) after all!
  • Whichever class I travel, I could never cut somebody off and thrust my passport in to tell someone, anyone that they should wait in the line for Economy as this one is for Business/First. Ever. Which is what this evil uncle who was ahead of us in line did this to an unsuspecting foreigner backpacker couple. So much for Athithi Devo Bhav. Seriously, how can you do that?! It would like, take a minute or two for them to get done, why be so rude? When I used to travel to work by local train, I could not even bring myself to walk to the front of the line and buy a first class pass if there wasn't already a separate queue, while an entire serpentine line waited. In fact, that reminds me of how these aunties in the local trains would go up to people who didn't pass their visual examination and ask them to show their first class pass! Imagine that! I'm still infuriated.
  • I have opened the registration for people who want to join me in my morcha to get Ikea to India. I am tired of lugging stuff every time!Anyway, half of the stuff me wants is un-luggable :(

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Me off to my second vacation in as many months! If only I could keep up the consistency!

I shall be back after four long, tiring days of fun. Miss me.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Good? Bad? Ah, just mix it all!

There's no such thing as a bad thing. Or good. Its all just a messy, sticky bundle of both. It seems that every good thing in life leaves behind it a bit of sadness and vice versa. May be this is how it is supposed to be, to balance it out.

Amit is in India for his father's barsi, in fact he has been visiting every six months since the last year and I have been able to meet him more frequently than I have in all the years J and he have been gone ... which is SO good and would be really great, if not for the sad reason behind it. He reached Saturday night and was here till today morning, a good 36 hours including a Sunday so YAY, I had a really great time this weekend.

It started with
Amit, S and I having a late dinner on Saturday and chatting till late, followed by a majorly lazy Sunday morning with much chatting, laughs, breakfast and some quarreling between S and me over who would get up from the sofa first to get ready. We had planned to have lunch at Lemon Grass and landed there only to realize that its shut down! I stop my many-a-week visits to Phoenix Mills and see what happens to the place! They should have begged me not to quit my job (I used to work nearby) and they would have remained in business! I digress ... we finally went to another favorite - Tamnak Thai at Shivaji Park and had a very tasty and very hot lunch which had all three of us shedding much water from the eyes. Somehow I have a history of senti, heart-to-heart chats over meals with Amit; a history which easily goes back a decade. So in keeping with the tradition we did have a serious chat, though not so senti this time. Hey, where's that bravery award for me?! :)

evening was much fun with Abhinav, Amit, S and I taking the party to town for a long walk at Marine Drive, many cups of Tea at Tea Centre (and I am a not even a tea/coffee drinker!), a few breezy hours of laughing, arguing, pulling each other's leg and having a good time followed by more of the same over drinks at Woodside Inn, accompanied with even more passionate discussing. Ser directed us there after we peeped into Mondy's and Leopold and wanted away from the crowded noises and table hogging (Thanks Ser, loved the place! ). After so much mehnat, we rested our tired bones and had dinner at the Worli Copper Chimney, dropped Abhi and returned home with happy memories. Ha! It was one of those days when you feel saturated from having laughed, talked, eaten too much and from having had entirely too much fun.

Later at night, S and I were talking and said almost the same thing wistfully. If J and Amit lived near us, around us or just not-so-f*****g-far-away from us, we could have had more of this, it could have been more than an annual/bi-annual event in our lives. I slept with this thought and woke up with it on one my (least) favorite days off late - Ooh!Monday! (@#$%) After much moping around and having a summarily crappy day, I had a thought.

I'm seeing this as the bad in my good but may be this is the good in my bad. I have these people in my life, I have the kind of family a lot of people would kill for and I also have some really really wonderful friends - may be more than my fair share (touchwood, people!) - most people are not as lucky to have this much. May be this is my good and if that's the case, I would pay the price gladly. I would take all the crappy Mondays and all the pining and missing and reminscing that is out there, to have this 'good' and won't mope either.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Colored Scraps and Blue Skies

Hitch Writer's post here brought about a wave of nostalgia that I was trying to not let surface for some days. I have lived in Jaipur for a few of my growing-up years and my parents still live there, also I've spent two years at MICA in Ahmadabad. If you've ever lived in that part of the country or even been there in the winter months, you would know that with the sun up the skies turn the bluest blue you would see. In the backdrop of these azure days comes 14th Jan, which is a state holiday in both the states of Rajasthan and Gujarat, it being the much awaited kite flying festival, known as Makar Sakranti or Uttarayan respectively.

Although the kite-flying starts many days in advance, THE day is the final reckoning. I have memories of entire households camping it on the rooftops, armed with their music systems blaring the latest bolly music, platters of hot yummy snacks and food making their way ever so often, from a single warrior to an army of 8-10 kite-fliers manning a single terrace and a never-ending stream of visiting friends and relatives contributing to the kite-wars across terraces. These inter-terrace interactions were such fun, there would be much challenging, attacks, counter-attacks and sledging. With such colorful setting and the girls very much in the frey ... the start of a few romances was to be completely expected. After all, we don't watch our movies just for fun, there's much to be learnt from them as well! The colors, the energy, the food, the music, the war and the love of it all. Its to be experienced to be believed.

Although my abilities in the art are amateurish my dad is a pro and has many stories starting from the time when he was a boy and used to make his own manjha (the sharp thread used so that you can cut other kites) by coating the thread with crushed glass. Whenever we are together for the festival we troupe to buy the kites and other paraphernalia; whenever we are not we talk about the times we've had and dad tells me how he didn't feel like flying kites alone(without me) and got only few. Anyway he did most of the flying even when I was there, every time the boys from the neighboring terrace managed to cut more than 2-3 of my kites in a row I would call him to clear the skies for me. The bonus was of course no work in the maths class next day with everyone's fingers taped up with numerous band-aids. It was almost un-cool to not have your fingers criss-crossed with manjha-cuts as a proof of your valiance!

Even in the later years, in Ahmadabad me and my friends would climb on to the hostel terrace and spend the day flying a few kites and making much noise, chatting lots, lazing and munching most.

With all these compelling snaps-shots swirling in my head, I couldn't NOT fly a kite so I did. With no wind (courtesy the tall buildings around), borrowed kites, manjha and in the society compound. They didn't stay up for more than a minute and there was nothing war-like about it. However, I did manage to get them into the air and was as excited as any other kid around me. There are things which give you joy no matter what and it is joy all the same even if some of it may be borrowed from people, places, sounds, sights not present around you at the time.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Year of Finished Business

This year has to be an year of new beginnings and of finishing the unfinished business (I AM writing the new year post, ain't I?).

May this be an year where the past is not forgotten and those who fell are not left there, an year where the wounds heal and those with compassion in their hearts find the time and courage to wear their hearts on their sleeves. An year where we don't completely lose the pain in our hearts but do find the hope to look to the future.

So all you guys out there, have a great 2009 and may we all have many beginnings and many happy endings in this year.

May this year be the year of finished business!