Saturday, December 31, 2011

Conversing to a wall

Have you had those conversations when you cry from the heart and the other argues with the head ? Its the most futile ever conversation. The day just ends with depleted emotions and an empty heart and a tired soul.


She looked at the mirror and smiled. But she saw the tear stained face, the emptiness written all over it. She saw the broken pieces of whatever was left of her reflecting in the mirror, crumbled and powdered , stamped and flung around. She reached out into the deep abyss inside her and saw a crushing emptiness, a block of negativity that pushed her against the wall . The mirror showed her the truth. There were no doors, no windows, not even a keyhole of hope and happiness . She took a kaleidoscope and looked inside her and she saw pieces of her rejected and thrown. She stared hard at the mirror now. It smiled back at her. Reality is harsh. The whole world celebrated. Beside her was one part of her world, oblivious to her pain and hurt , snoring in the dark. She typed in the white screen. Happy New Year. The mirror chided her. Stop pretending, it said.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

And so a year ends

For the first time in the last four years, ever since I took a sabbatical from corporate life and grappled through some wonderful and truly depressing phases in my life, I am actually looking forward to a whole new  year .

2011 in many ways was one of my best years in recent times, 2010 coming a close second and 2009 being particularly a very bad phase. Nevertheless , am looking forward to 2012 , although the buzz doing the rounds is all about recession and a financial melt down.

For starters, Ive never felt so self assured like this in a very long time. Phases of identity crisis, lack of growth, no sense of direction, judgement lapses wrt people, bad health phases and sudden depletion of financials dogged me over the last four years ever since I quit my high paying , seven digit salaried job in media.

My world was my job then and I prided myself on my successes and rubbished my failures.  The highs and lows never worried me as I moved from one job to another, from one challenge to another. My days were always busy  then .I would have no time to think except on the job.

But soon I was just becoming a zombie , a programmed robot doing the job. But when I quit, I just became a malfunctioned robot who suddenly realized that there was a mind and a brain and I promptly put them to all the wrong use . I thought too much and worked myself into a frenzy. I realized what joblessness would do.

Ive never made friends during my professional life  -  just colleagues and ex colleagues and as a rule, I believe that they are not synonyms for friends. And so, in my solitary phase of life, I often spoke to myself and to a group of new found friends from the online world whom I believed were friends. But then , I forgot that facebook friends are not the real friends and hence I suffered some serious lapse of judgement wrt quite a few of them.

However amidst all this, a couple of wonderful things happenned. A love for the road, to seek new worlds, to immerse myself into new cultures took over my life  and I put my frenzied hyperactive soul from a soul searching mode to a discovery mode. Only this time., I found new worlds through my journeys and shared it with the world through my blog and articles. The journey in my head moved on to the real world and I stopped plaguing myself with questions relating to existentialism and decided to live for the moment . Ironically I realized that throughout my professional life, I was doing just that - living, working for the moment  and moving on to the next phase that gave me a sense of high. And I missed that during my sabbatical. But the passion for travelling fitted well into the urge of seeking new challenges .

I still needed to connect and travel writing then helped me reach out to the world at large . I found several like minded people .We discussed stories and travels , but therein I drew the line. The written word stood between me and the people on the other end with whom I shared many conversations ; but bereft of any emotion. Once bitten twice shy, I told myself. 

So what brings me to welcome 2012 ?Nothing really has changed. I am still living a solitary world, typing alphabets on to a white screen, having conversations with myself through this laptop and thinking that am probably connecting to people on the other side of this internet world. I still dont have answers to my existential questions and my bank balance has completely depleted . But then I have my road laid out in front of me and I will walk down its path and I will let it lead me wherever it takes me . And I will tell my stories , no matter who reads or reacts.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


What is it about some people that makes you wish you had never met them?

What is it about some people that makes you want to look into the mirror and take a one good look at yourself ?

What is it about some people that makes you want to forget and forgive and restart all over again ?

What is it about some people that you let go the moment you realize its the best for everyone ?

Whats is it about some people that make you shift from I like to I am indifferent ?

What us it about some people that makes you want to rewind life all over again ?

What is it about some people that the moment you think of them , you wish to do CTRL ALT DEL ?

What is it about some people that makes you realize that you are a stranger to yourself ?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A birthday just went by..

I turned a year older today ..well, it neither made front page news, nor was I thronged with bouquets and brickbats.I was simply overwhelmed by the wishes from various people - virtual and real, ex bosses and ex colleagues, travellers and bloggers, family and friends , classmates I had not seen for many years and people I had known for less than a year..

My maid looked at me at 12 pm and asked me - " Madam, how come you are looking so fresh ? " She is so used to seeing me in my bed clothes that she probably must have wondered if it was a new year resolution to wake up early and have a bath..I muttered something about a birthday and she was all excited demanding for a cake and rushing to the balcony and returning with a small pink flower..I was touched and promptly ordered for cakes for her children..Nevertheless, I wondered about all the good people out there who took time to wish me by phone and the internet.

I also realized that I had reached an age when my mother had my brother . I was a gawky teenager then and was excited at the prospect of a young baby at home.Today I dont have kids, but somehow that thought doesnt affect me. I also thought about my mother who was in a different generation, learning to cope with a teenager like me and a baby boy at home. We were in transition then. We had just moved from a joint family to an individual home, but that hardly made a difference in retrospect. It simply meant that we could eat my mother's cooking instead of the old cook's saltless food . It also meant that my mother did not have to rush and ensure a cup of curds is kept aside for me, much to the chagrin of her inlaws. It also meant that she didnt have to "help" the cook who was my grandmother's buddy as a dutiful daughter in law and we could eat an extra chapathi or a serving of rice without asking for permission.

We were still living in individual houses in Madras , in a large compound - under the watchful eye of my late grandfather, the family patriarch who controlled among many things our freedom. My mother was gently balancing the politics of a joint family and her own disappointments at not being able to fulfil her music career . Her life was not just ruled by us and her inlaws, but my grand aunts and uncles and their many many children . She managed us- my father's slowly failing health and my brother , who was just a baby and me, a growing rebel. We were so preoccupied by our lives that I hardly remember her falling sick or talking about her insecurities.

Somewhere in her life was me, a growing rebel, whom she had groomed to be a first ranker in academics , but who was learning to look at life beyond books. I was learning to discover my own emotions and form opinions of people. I was vulnerable, but a rebel alright. I rejected everything and refused to conform. I wanted independence and loads of it. We had no phones then and needed our grandfather's permission to use the main line at home. My mother used to take me on long bus rides to see her parents, very often being denied the car at home which would have gone to pick up one of my uncles or drop my cousin at school. If she complained, I didnt pay attention then.

Initially there were just two houses in a compound. Then two became three and later four. I grew up with cousins and I enjoyed my childhood a lot, but I somehow could not deal with the barrage of second cousins and their parents and grandparents who constantly landed in our lives.We were always thronged by relatives who came to see my grandparents. If a relative died or a baby was born to some distant cousin, our grandparent's house was the nucleus of activity. Probably today, we are starved of relatives and festivities, but then those days, I was waiting to throw a bomb at them. They literally invaded our lives. We had no concept of privacy or freedom. Even worse, such concepts didnt exist. My mother hardly complained.

Today I dont have the mental strength or the patience of my mother. I dont have the ability to balance and juggle life. I constantly have emotional upheavals , work tensions and health issues. I dont have the health or the ability to even pick up my health like the way she did. I have all the independence in the world. I dont have people invading my life and I can choose to bathe at 12 or at 3 or not bathe at all - I still remember being told then when to wash our hair and how many times a day as well.Today, she has got the freedom that i craved for, but she is at an age when she needs a support system. The relatives have all walked away into oblivion and she still manages her life, my dad's ill health, my brother's and mine highs and lows. Today she complains a bit. I hear, but I can do nothing much ..