That is something probably he is used to hearing from F, whom he considered more of a Kid Brother. “My Sister always thought you were a complete mess in your head.”
Something that stuck with him for life. There is a stagnant place in life, just like we all believe there must have been a simpler place in time. Strangely life takes you more often there, leaving you bewildered.
Like the tempting waves of the sea, as one steps into the shore, the water soothes you, caressing you and thereby slowly touching each fibre of your soul and wading you into it. There is a moment when you let go of the fear and step into the horizon of the unknown as the ocean engulfs you into it completely. Few people rarely get into ocean that way, to completely give into it.
Those countless hours they have spent on the sea, her fascination for water as F puts it. He was taken completely by the charms of the siblings. They are quite apart yet they are so similar. As we all grow up, we outgrow the intimacy of being brothers or sisters. What charmed him more, is that he can see himself as the brother and the sister and how much he miss being a brother to his own brother. As D puts it often, “Cranky families produce better children” Yet they are his own dysfunctional idea of family and love.
The girl that he fell in love, a girl who who grudgingly yet soulfully built a home in a house full of strangers. A girl who painfully transformed herself into a woman, having fought for a place in the world. A woman who with an easy smile and with a sip of wine can be dismissive, “Yeah.It all happened. Everything was given to me at the right time.” He did wonder at how many people, actually would be so nonchalant about growing up.
A few remnants of the residual love, the slight amused tilt, “You are so much a kid, still.” the smile she had for him through the side mirror as she parks her car in the reverse, a momentary pause to decide whom to greet first, the dog or the guy. The way he longs for those rare moments when she leans onto him, the smell of her morning shower, the smell on her hospital dress, when she is back home. The way she closes her eyes as a test and a thought to decide how much water for the rice to boil. A tired greeting on the phone at the end of the day. The twinkle in her eyes at his every gesture of love and surprise. Her resignation for his ways into the future, “You are still a student, bubby” Her habit of flicking off the TV for a second to see him in the screen, sipping the cup of tea for sweetness. The way she raises her voice stern and firm, when he is all bugging about ,”Bunk today, Please.” The memory of a woman checking her Kohl in the mirror as she gets ready for work.
Those evenings, when they all huddle together on the floor around the sofa, Tea, snacks, Wine, endless chatter and banter, the movies, the cards, the board games, those dumb charades. Its the time, when all he looks is for a moment when she would little brush against him as she gets up to leave or snuggle quietly into his lap, humming along a song quietly, as she winks at him. Those myriad memories of her. As F teases him, “You are way too smitten,” And remember, “My Sister always thinks; you are a complete mess in your head.”
To meet and part; To part and to meet. And the final memory as she closes her eyes and sings in a soothing voice and in tune with the pitch as she raises in the timbre,
“Kaatru Veesum Veyyil Kaayum Kaayum Athil
Maatram Èthum Illayae.. Aaaa..
Vaanum Mannum Nammai Vaazha Chøllum Antha
Vaazhthu Oayavillai Èndrendrum Vaanil..,”
In that Ephimeral bubble of eternity, he rests his life as she opens her eyes with a smile. The unmistakable sad silt of her head with the twinkle of a small sigh.
He was new to the place; with hundreds of new faces around, he not only felt new, but also out of place. Still he braced himself for what was ahead in store. With each passing day, he became familiar with the new faces. Soon there would be someone to greet him, smile at him, and stop by to ask, ‘had lunch?’ ‘Do you have class now?’ ‘Nice shirt yaar’, ‘Want to have chai?’ Casual acquaintances do happen this way in a new place.
But still there were few people, who do not need such mere casual niceties. But there was something else; Some other people who took him to them. Kevin, The Great Dane Singer, Nagaraj, Swami, Oliver Twist, Range, Henry, Kalyani, Robert Langdon, Jamie Sullivan, Sparks, Jayakanthan, Harry Potter, Erma Bombeck.
And not to forget Alvin, the cute kid, who lost his family on a Christmas Eve. It was Alvin, who showed a different him to others. People by then knew that he was a story teller. And she loved to listen to his tales. She knew, he is different and all that mattered to him was the words and what they convey to world.
There was this guy and the first novel he brought for him. “The pleasant Interlude”; and from then it was their ritual- A book for every birthday.
Oh! Not to forget how these three met on a mid-night to be introduced as hard cotter potter-maniacs. Be it the mess, corridors, Stone benches, the front shop. They were never tired to carry a conversation of what would happen to Harry and Hogwarts after the death of the beloved Headmaster Dumbledore.
There were a few girls, who met him almost every evening/weekend to get/share/exchange/rob books from him. Also they loved to call him Krishna, for they believed he has a way with girls, but not just with words alone. Those evening spent in the stone benches and those never ending conversations at the girls hostel gate. Girls, it seems had to face a tough time with their infamous warden because of him, as how someone later testified.
Then came two Psycho Seniors. Remember Kevin, not just a problem child in the case of high school shooting, but someone he held close onto and someone who grew on him. She knew that behind this stupidity and Vainokki, rather Bada Jollu Party, there is a sensitized guy.
Not to forget the beautiful world of Malgudi that R K Narayan weaved with his words and imagination, which brought us together and also the hatred of you for poor Ginny, I have never seen anybody so much drooling for our Harry.
Oh! And then the senior and the sister, with whom he had real tough time, when it comes to make her read books, and had to throw up real emotional tantrums to make her read books. Someone who got him Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on the first day and the last day of his life in Coimbatore.
Pray for me Brother, Gone with the Wind, My Days, and a Readers Digest Edition of A Walk to Remember were their last exchanges. Rather the meen curry and Kari meen at Neyyattinkara.
Have you ever sit on a public place reading a book? Well you would. But have you ever snatched a book from someone when they were deeply immersed in it? And then call your friend and show, “Hey Look, Nicholas sparks.” And still forget that there was a guy standing in front of you, mouth wide open and little intrigued. I know someone, who just got lost in North Carolina then.
A junior, who was introduced as a fellow Potterian and a co-Aquarian, someone who shared the equal madness and passion for books. Someone who made him gift her, Tuesdays with Morrie
And then someone else walks into his life, a junior to start with, and then turning out to be a precious little brother he always longed for. They grew together without books. I remember those Friday evenings when he went to see him off. Those old book stalls, where he leisurely spend an hour or two buying half of dozen of books, only to be snatched/robbed, when he is back to campus.
It rarely happens that he gets to read the book first. It was always made sure that the book is circulated among their reading circle; read by everyone and then promptly returned to him.
Such was the life of The Book Broker.
P.S. To all my Book-Lover friends from PSG… Love you folks…
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No!!! This is not a review of the book, or Am not gonna talk about anything related to the book, There is always a coming back for everything on earth and for everyone… And So for me, for someone who didn’t write anything for ages, It is something little that does the wonder in life,
For I believe that little things matter the most in life.. THE MOST… And I greatly adore/admire/love/respect Arundathi Roy, who christened her book, The God of Small things… Happyness like the sands of the sea is made up of numerous little things, Life is made up of such numerous beautiful little things which make the short while a worth while occasion.
Be it watching a sunset, a cozy conversation over a cup of chai or a little shared dinner, a late night coffee or spending an evening with friends … And when I say friends, It sounds a little tricky… for What is a friend and who is a friend differs a lot in every one’s perspective. Someone who makes you feel good, someone who brings you a smile for no reason, someone who makes you care, go for him/her. Nothing great can define a friend and a friendship … It is often the overstated or the understated…
An unexpected catch up in the canteen, leading to an idle no-sense/no need of a sense/all sense conversation, a small walk the talk/hey am leaving/ hey see the sun/
A path through the dried grass, thoroughly littered with shit and shattered glass, and the tall bushes and tress, a careful walk among the once lush greenery, leading to the lake, the dried patch of the earth, a small make-over place to sit, a amateur flutist trying his level best to play sound and a musical response from the cuckoo or a peacock…. Watching the blue hues turn to the orange hues as the clouds magically sweep the sun home, the birds flying home in the V direction, the frogs croaking in the lake, a duck paddling its way to and fro, a small bird searching for the fish, the buffaloes grazing lazily, three friends chatting over, one desperately trying to play flute, the other playing and singing songs and the third other ever innocently watching the stupid acts of the two guys… One thing leading to the other, a talk about Tamil movies, One animatedly talking about her love for Tamil movies, and how she likes the dance of the actor Vijay *Sigh*,, Hey indeed Vijay a great dancer, but actor….. oh My God……
Then a photo session to follow, Oh! how much I love to click people,,, The most beautiful moments captured in the camera and frozen in the mind and every picture tells a story, how the picture was taken, what happened before, during and after… Listening to the old songs, the English rapp, malayalam Naadan pattukal, the Hindu devotional songs, Suprabhatam, “The best way to,” ….. get up in the morning, completes your friend.. How true, The joy of getting up early in the morning to the sound of the magical muse…. Some things just happen… The accidental meeting, the unplanned act of sitting together and watching the sun-set…
An unexpected Gift(s), The most beautiful thing in life is surprise, and the next wonderful thing is being surrounded with people who surprises you… An Unexpected gift, that too a book, It indeed feels great when someone gifts, and then a long ago requested cloth bag…. I felt so good…. An unexpected phone call, when you were busy sharing dinner, what feel is that when you turn into kids and share food, in spite fighting over the fish pieces and still sharing leaving the little for the sure-late-comer….
And a phone call to talk/share/ramble on about the recent Jayakanthan book read.. The Characters Ganga/Henry/Ranga/Kalyani who teach you what life is, An author with a fatherly concern who teaches you the healthy view of life, a non-judgemental writer, the greatest humanist-ever, and therapeutic words brimming with love. Jayakanathan, You made me a human… And tons of Thanks to JB Ma’am for having introducing this legend in my life….
What more can be asked in life than love, people, books, music and certain other little which you love the most and that makes life the more meaning full… They make you passionate and compassionate enough. What more is needed in life than to live life with love? What more can life be? when you’re surrounded by people whom you love and people who love you?
What more can be asked in life, when you know that life is in the little moments of happyness and life is only when you live, As Anu akka says,”what more life can be, when you have learnt, how to romance life…”
We’re conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But great moments often catch us unaware – beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a “small one.”
P.S1.Well I Thank Nikhil for His , Honest Blogger Award that He bestowed upon this Humble Blog And his Cho cho cho chweet words for me
“the tamil payyan-most men aren even half as honest as he is in his space,the longest posts in ma blgroll which is quite superb though you tend to struggle for words thaks to the sheer magnitude of his posts,fun loving,humorous and sexy.. :p).”
P.S2. And if you have noticed I had changed the blog name from Musings to Musings of a true believer. People Who knows me well, Know well about this Incurable optimist too and I believe that I’m a true Believer, an Inspiration from Nicholas Sparks..
P.S3. And, Recently I had been asked by a good friend of mine, to actually confess (anything) in my blog, I remember telling this to a friend, followed by a roar of laughter. But I believe in this still …, “I want to read with my lady-love, A walk to Remember in my first night and cry.” It’s now left to you to imagine, what kind of a man would want to read in his Nuptial Night……
P.S4. This post is dedicated to all my friends who have been with/through me, eternally.