A woman I loved is coming for dinner tonight.
So as known, I slept very early, woke up in the middle of the night, lazed around watching random stuff, read random pieces from my diary, sat across the balcony. Having fallen asleep there, I wake up disoriented.
I get up and I make tea. As I wait for the water to boil, I vaguely go through a few random memories of her from the past.
I am thirty one years old, I have been alone for almost three years now, I have dated no one since-the-last-almost-three-maybe-four-years-of relationship/being-together/knowing her. I know her for the past six years. I fell in love with her, yet. She could have fallen in love with me; may be, she did. But, she avoided it. We were almost in an almost relationship, but we averted it.
Sometimes I like to be alone, I come into my bedroom at the odd time of the day, just to lie down for a moment. I Look out at the light coming through my window, it gives me a feeling of solitude filled with hope. It seems the most human thing, i can learn to live with.
I realise how, some mornings never dawn in a man’s bedroom, the drapes of a morning never unfolds till a woman arrives.
I remember a portrait of us together in a friends house. Probably the only picture of us together; me in a white tee and a black shorts after giving bozo, the chocolate lab, a shower and she in her pantsuit. The picture is a testimony of our worlds apart, Yet S’s mom finds that a cute picture, “No two same people ever fall in love”
There are times, I feel so ditsy, dizzy and disoriented. I do take refugee with some of my couple-friends, Three to two to be precise, for they make you feel better and humane. I remember once at a late dinner at their place, I could hear their baby whimpering from the bedroom. I was about to stop my story-telling as she paused for a second and asked me to finish first. I was a bit taken back, She got up as I finished with the anecdote, Winking at her husband V, she said, “I will get the baby, you take care of this one.” I am grateful in life for a few deep friendships that I had earned till now.
Sometimes all I do is sit at my sofa or lean against the counter in the kitchen or even without realising as I open my fridge or when I am about to leave for work, I start to think about the home that I have made in the last lustrum. The guest bedroom, the way the laundry bag is hidden from the view, the way the bamboo plant is kept facing the sun, the arrangement of rugs.The idea of an hand-sanitiser within the reach as you snuggle onto the sofa. The chair right near the front door so that one can ease into it, as reaching for the footwear. In some ways every little precise detail matched the version of you in my head.
At times, it gives me an immense feeling of a home, a family, when there is someone sleeping in the next room, the way I tip-toe across the entire house, the way a door should be closed with a silent hush. Something I picked up from somewhere,
just like this weird habit of mine – Celebrating either a 10,000th day or Eleven thousand eleven hundred and eleventh day of someone, I missed the first. So i planned the latter on April 1st 2014. How I bugged her all day to bunk, just to cancel my plan on the last minute. Yet Fahadh came to the rescue, planned the whole thing, A cake, a box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates, I do have the small video of someone, mellowing down, the welling up in the eyes and a slight smile of mouthing the words, Thank you.
I imagine at times, the house filled with people, the two kids and the dog. As I have this space below the window sill, large enough to fit a small bed for a dog. Of her in the study, pacing deep down in concentrating on work, the kids sleeping, me sitting with the dog, talking to a friend/student. May be its a way that one is growing up without a family around.
May be somewhere a home awaits you, as the woman I loved is coming for dinner tonight.
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.
Where could i possibly begin?
At an ending. May be an impending ending. That kept us Waiting.
i couldn’t possibly start counting the memories we are both bestowed with, And in great vain, i attempt to remember the mortal remains of memories of togetherness.
For Memory is a burden.
How do i remember thee? Let me uncount the ways
i remember thee to the depth and breadth and height
To the beginning of the warmth in your touch
i remember thee to the end of every next-day
Most quietly waiting by my g-talk for a message to pop up
Into the laziness of your day-ending as my day dawns to the sound of your voice
i shall wait, my time to serve with memories intact
To see you somewhere in all my griefs and faith.
i shall but remember thee Always
For i know no greater love than, of remembrance
“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.”
A year that just slipped by, a year of grief; certainly,`The Year of Magical Thinking’ when a thousand things dawned onto the quiet mind basking in laziness. An urgent need to seize the slyly time that refuses to wait for any tides. A few memories, that needs exorcizing, if not will continue to haunt the remains of time. A happy memory of learning, loving and living together for a short worthwhile. As the year ends, a few deaths that scarred me remains untangled, in the web of memory. An haphazard need to bid adieu to a thousand things as the year nears its end.
At times, Waking up is a like a dream. A certain kind of feeling it evokes as one wakes up from/to a dream. She did remember this; a distant memory, a near-fading past- his feel of lips on her navel. She could only chuckle at the memory, his less than short of obsession with navels.
Next only to books, those unread, but buying books at every other day, the untidy linings of the books along the walls of every shelf. For only the beauty of Japanese language can find a word for book hoarding – Tsundoku.
To end the year with something that i recently read/lived through. Kafka on the shore is one of the strangest books i’ve read. A journey that stretches itself onto the realms of magic as the reader approaches it. The story is narrated from different perspectives of Kafka Tamura, a fifteen-year-old boy who runs away from home to escape an oedipal prophecy and thereby making it true and then the story of Nakata, an old man who gained the ability to talk to cats after an incident in his childhood.
This entire book reads like a fine collage of intense vignettes of unrelated dreamy scenes and poignant conversations. A meandering dreamlike tone drives the entire reading experience. A surrealistic “Kafka-esque” thread runs all along the narrative tying the loose ends, before the book ends. At times, it takes a toll on the reader to make connections every now and then, that said, it ain’t an easy read.
One can sense an intentional ambiguity in the very narrative and the plot.
May be the book speaks to me in a way, as to the threshold, that had been pushed onto me.
“Listen, Kafka. What you’re experiencing now is the motif of many Greek tragedies. Man doesn’t choose fate. Fate chooses man. That’s the basic worldview of Greek drama.”
As often, i feel the lure of the unknown quite regularly. May be like everything else, “Kadhalum Kadandhu Pogum”
I knew deep inside me that I will not and cannot love him as how S loved him. Yet my fondness grew aplenty, platonically. He made me grow into the person that I always wanted to. He taught me; how to dribble a ball, climb, swim, trek, to whistle with fingers, tie a sailor’s knot in ropes and Windsor’s knot and seventeen other ways to tie a necktie, something that my children adore in me now.
And, as I always remember being the youngest and only daughter, how it was to be treated a-bullied-yet-the-princess of the world by my brothers. I wish my two daughters would stop constantly picking on their brother and leave him to grow up like, the memory of mine-You.
There are two kinds of people in this world – idealists and practical people. Everybody else falls somewhere between these extremes. But if one should want for an educational institution to create more than just employable graduates; if one thinks that they should create future leaders of tomorrow who will be motivated and honest, one would then be probably branded as a hopeless idealist. And not without cause.
The power mongering sham that the Students’ Union elections 2009 in the University of Hyderabad became would disgust even the faintly idealistic at heart. What should have been a simple but powerful election of student representatives within a university became a thicket of controversy, a bellowing of self servicing political ideologies and an undisguised struggle for power which left many students questioning the point of it all.
The General Body Meeting (GBM) held on 20 August was a hungama with shouting, tantrums, a physical fight and the ultimate walk-out characteristic of our parliament. The philosophy is simple – either you shout and get yourself heard. If you can’t, don’t bother listening to the others as well. It’s survival of the loudest.
The GBM was but the beginning. People who are ‘the upholders of democracy in the campus’ did not disappoint the cynics with their expected behaviour. The days of nomination provided entertainment for all those who consider shouting threats and obscenities without consideration for age or gender but a general pastime. Rumours about cases of sexual harassment being filed against certain candidates started flying. Violence was also reported with one student being roughened up. Apart from this, certain other students wielding cameras and camcorders were questioned and stopped. The reasons behind such behaviour may seem justified to some, but the behaviour in itself is never so.
The day of the counting saw a huge amount of confusion with allegation of rigging, raised voices and slogans being thrown around. The fact that it took an unprecedented amount of security to maintain at least a facsimile of peace speaks for itself. The rude behaviour of students, not just against the members of their rival parties, but also the faculty members present was shocking but what is positively saddening is that such behaviour is not an isolated incident. It happens every year and hence the advice for only the thick-skinned to enter into politics.
The goings on of this election may fill up pages but the question that has to be asked is whether all that has happened is any different from what we all term as the corrupt politics and hopeless Indian scenario. We read news about this political scam or that political hungama but are the political scenarios in our intellectually ‘enlightened’ educational institutions any different? Idealistically speaking, if we hope to change the inescapable, dirt ridden politics of our country, the change needs to come from such places of learning. But sadly, university politics only serves to hold a mirror to national politics. It is viewed as a training ground for future politicians. But it kills any hope for a different set of leaders for tomorrow as the few people who may seriously try for change get bogged down by a system that goes around in loops.
In terms of politics, apart from the hardly existing idealists and the rampant opportunity seekers, a third group titled ‘I-don’t-care’ exists. Neither do they hold opinions about politics nor they do they feel it is important to hold them. They have given up like a seasoned cynic. A semblance of democracy does remain because they tell you that you have the right to vote, but when you do not have the right to contest for a post without fear or subscribing to any particular ideology (superficial or otherwise), the definition of democracy needs a re-look. This process of re-moulding of attitudes and behaviour needs to start with education. But the meandering words of hopeless idealists are often lost in silence.
By Deepti Nair
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Curse the good god, (if there is any). What’s happening with my musings? It is like; I had been ditched by muse. Ages since I had immersed in thoughts, No I don’t count my exam days. They are far worse, but best when it comes to exercise my mind. For I imagine a lot, when I write exams. Probably you have, when you have no clue about what’s been asked in the question paper. Half my answers are hypothetical and the other needless to utter, non-sense. Well that’s how I had been till now. But my best memories include exam days, be it the board exams, entrance examinations or semester exams. I can never forget those days. There’s apparently something magical about exams, that only an average under dog can know. The thrill of being ignorant about what you need to know and still make it to the exam hall. And spending a considerable chunk of time, day-dreaming-looking around, reading the instructions, hall-tickets, question paper, what ever available to read, randomly looking around, wool-gathering, reliving memories, pretending to think and acting as if you are smart know-all and write some crap to fill-in pages. Those days are now gone. Me on a way to be research scholar soon, Heaven willing…..
Life is quite different now, outside campus and especially being at home. feels like am deeply grounded and living in an island of lost abyss. I wish things were a bit better. Have got loads to do, don’t where to start to sort out things. Feeling crazy yet unreasonably depressed. Let’s see.
And Well I have exactly never spoken about this, The coming of a small town boy to a metro. It has been two years now. and I remember the day, when this small town guy landed in hydreabad, about to cry when his dad wasl leaving. Thanks tto Rajitha akka and the timely offer of pav bhaji! from then it was a journey, mostly the journey of the self into the self… and then I started blogging! well, That was one another thing that happened to me. well the other thing is the meeting of people. People from various parts of the country. I learnt a few things and well even un learned many..
And this i9s how my musings have been evading me for the past two months. I honestly couldn pen down a single thought! there has been a block/clog in my space… and Of course things were nt fine at my end. Not keeping for a long while. All i know is my search grows bigger in my life and as Known to a few, I just want to give up everything…
And this wonderfull thing happened… Lets just call her N, for a few close folks of mine know, her! It was exactly in my first year UG I met her in coimbatore bus stand. She then was in her secomd year English literature. well she is my Kinter Garden sweet heart. Well. My first ever friend, The first person I consciously loved outside my Family. We were been this inseperable pair, well everyone knows that peopel till tease me, for I did everything to be with her, sneaking her out of the class in UKG and going for a walk in the school garden while class hours, spending the noons with her while we were supposed to take rest. It was innocence of love with pure bliss and joy. I remember the time when I prayed that I should be put up with her after my fifth std. And How she prayed to Mother Mary to change me to a girl so that I can be with her…
And we didnt meet so ofetn after that. and the last time I met her was a few weeks back, most unexpectedly. I heard she got married to a guy she fell in love with. Her parents were really nice ecought to let her marry a guy from another religion and I met her with her husband. Well All I remember about N is her dimpled smile with her trying to tuck a strand of hair. She remains the same. and then after a casula conversation, when we were about to leave, she smiled and told me, “Sure da bharatha, You will like V, he knows you well. and he is more like you.” and she looked into my eyes and smiled. God! I love her. and You know I smiled inside, a knowing smile of seeing her happy!!! when you love someone, you smile often… and Guys! I love you. V and N. My sincere wishes are prayers for a happy life…
Well Nothing much! am not still out of my writers block.
Jb ma’m gonna finish her thesis soon.
Haven’t spoken with anyone, should call and speak…
Got three more exams, well Thats counts more important
My trip is waiting and so is my friends
HAvent spokent to Mano, asish, Raku, Raji akka, sudar anna, winny, and a lot more
Been a year! I met Raul…
Should meet Vicky this time, no matter what happens..
Should visit my old school and college…
Samby would be back soon…
Well a lot more
Hoping against hopes That I would resume writing soon…
Exams got over on 25th.. And I had been blissfully awake all night till 30th working on my Research Proposal.
Well had total fun, boozing after a short-while. I started boozing in late march and still looking forward for a last booze in the campus.
It is odd, staying put in a place and watching people leave, people who I met here and people who mattered to me more in the last two years.
And Now I’m here. Not knowing what to do, Haven’t booked my tickets still. Don’t know, should I stay here or leave.. but where?
Spoke to Mano after a long time, It’s been a year since he left the campus
Anu akka called me, it seems she hates coffee and that is what she gets all day. Life???
Many more Happy returns of the day Asish, My Alter Ego’s birthday today.
Have got two more major exams. That will determine what next?
Got a travel plan to kerala, Well Plans never works? Been a victim of plans often lately.
Just wanna hit at a place with no humans around.
And Kind of pissed off with things, lately????
It’s Okay Baru!!! Life….
And I need a Re-Invention now
Well, It seems Samby is back, Welcome back lil big bro!!!!
And I smell Jasmine, now… well Just a girl sat next to my system. I turned to look at her. Oh! Chechiyo???
And sorry people, will soon hit at your blogs too. It is just that I need some time to wake up from this Hibernation/sabbatical idling away …
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Not everyday I come across someone calling me out of the blue, “Jobless, I like your blog”. Well it just happened one night I met (not exactly met, but talked through the window with) this family. I was on my way home from Madurai, and around 1 AM, the bus stopped in the place called A1 plaza, on the way to Karur not sure but on some highway. The first time I had been to this place was with my mom, where we’d a leisurely mid night dinner. I fell in love with the place, there’s nothing so specific about the place, except it has a book outlet, a Petrol bunk, a canteen ( plus awesome coffee and tea,) and a couple of rest-rooms with a garden around, but it’s definitely the time when I first saw the place, made me fall in love with the place.
This time, I was alone, the bus stopped; I’d some 15 minutes, I got down to stretch out. This was definitely a Bus lag, and of course I’d this strange love for traveling in the SETC buses. Don’t know why, but a long night travel in a SETC, is something I started to love. I got an Appy tetra pack n came out and stood near another SETC bus, lazily sipping my drink, I was just loosing myself in the night sight with a cool breeze around. I was bit sleepy too, had my ear phone plugged in, with the song, “Tere Mere beach mein…” from Ek Thuje keliye. How romantic!!!
I felt something hitting my back and I turned to see a girl sitting near the windows in the bus and gesturing me to unplug my ear-phones, I removed the ear phone, and asked her, “Are you talking to me?”
Yeah, she was undoubtedly talking to me, “Hey Jobless! You here!!” How you doing?”
I managed to utter a Hi and replied “… yeah… Fine Err-you!! You know me”. I stood exactly like an idiot smiling away to glory. She told me that she is reader of my blog and she knew me. I really don’t know how she recognized me. I did put a photo, but! Well. Anyways…
She extended her hand out and I stepped in and stood on my toes to greet her. God How short I’m. No these SETC buses are monstrously tall. When she touched my hand, there was a deafening roaring sound in me,
Yeah, there was. The engine of the bus sprang to life, and it’s a Volvo bus (engine at the rear) she told her name twice and I couldn’t hear her name. The bus was about to move, and someone else shouted, “Barath, amma Barath!!!” I stood like a rock. And someone peeped out of the window and said, Hey son. I like your writing, keep going. Write more. All the very best, Son!
I kept staring at the bus till it went out of my sight.
I should have at least had the basic sense/manner to ask her out; I mean, ask her to get down from the bus. I stood surprised. My bus started and the conductor sir was calling everyone. When the bus turned towards me, the headlights hit straight on my face. I felt like I was out from a dazzle. Who are they? Why was I so dumb? I should have talked properly to them. And is jobless such a common household name, (at least in their family) But I felt so good that some stranger, somewhere could associate with my writings and me.
And whoever it is, Thanks a lot.
P.S. I dedicate this post to the reader family of Musings blog.
Well. For people still who believe in the tag, “Unity In Diversity”. Please wake up, Things are pretty different, even indifferent. We had a week long rejuvenation of spirit, as how it is called. I somehow also happened to witness the dampening of spirits. It just happened to be that people in the event management least bother about the participants or the audience. Its always about how everything is organised in a larger scale, everything blown out of proportion. And our seniors tell this year’s Sukoon was quite good, well its upto others to imagine what it was eralier.
Even I had been waiting for this event, and also we’d the other event called Mediations. So we weren’t much infected with the Sukoon Spirit. Well no proper schedule for the events as planned went on. It happens, may be in and around ten to fifteen minutes, but certainly not hours together and also certain events were totally re-scheduled. Well there are the final year students who wanted to perform in any event, as its their last year, Well some had been in disappointments. The importance was all in how they hand-picked the chief guests, who were quite known as comical figure (well that’s an interesting read). People, I mean the participants were all taken for granted, who they think will hang around for hours, as they think, Participants has nothing else to do. I always had problems with this concept of being a chief guest. One who is always ahead of time and makes it late, just to show-off. I knew people, who when they were invited as chief guests, been on time and waited for the events to begin.
As being a chief guest twice in my life, I learnt two things which I would gladly share as a tip with my readers.
1) Always try to be there at the exact time or 10 to 15 minutes before to know well about the people who have invited you.
2) And don’t ever depend on food and transport. Be on your own.
I just wanted to convey this thing, That people have no tolerance for the musical or theatrical or cultural performance and least amount of respect for the talent and the performers. All they prefer is dance, down to earth (in all aspects) kind of dance, to make fun, mock the performers, jump in frenetic joy. Well Things are different now. Ultimately it is all about how wild they can conduct a carnival and how wild people can turn or how low people can stoop to have (oh! My God!) good time( Well that’s for another post). Guys Sukoon sucks!!!
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When asked about issues in society regarding ‘being single’, she made this beautiful statement. In a world where you are just a dot in millions and millions of people. It is your spouse who witnesses your life. And either being single or married is more about how you live your life. She said that the the relationship between man and woman becomes more beautiful, if they could appreciate the differences and accept people for what they are.
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