Thursday, October 6, 2016

S turns 28 *sunshine*

My birthday post has never been so late. I have been struggling to write this post for so long. And now I am just going to complete this anyhow so that I can remove it from my to-do list.

Till last year, growing up was a lot of fun. Becoming independent etc. But this time, I was like a Peter Pan. Suddenly too many things are changing and I want to pause everything. Rewind and fast forward. Take a good look at Time.

I hate the responsibilities that come with growing up. All I can think of right now is turning 30 and then 32 and then 35 (cant look beyond that) and I shudder to imagine what lies ahead. Good things (too) I am sure, but it is daunting. And I am restless.

This year my birthday involved reading Calvin and Hobbes (he got me the ENTIRE collection) and coloring pictures (colouring book for adults, it has illustrated postcards of streets of Paris – it is lovely!). I brought in my birthday right after some personal and professional ‘turmoil’ and was not my usual chirpy self. But I behaved like a 5 year old that entire week (got my birthday gifts early- Amazon yayy!).

My birthday was the sunshine I needed to feel blessed.

So a happy happy birthday was had.


I miss this blog and I am going to be back soon. 

Love,
S

P.S: Previous birthday posts for those who are new to the blog-
When S turned 23
When S turned 24
When S turned 25
When S turned 26
When S turned 27

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Niece

I was the youngest in my family. Always the pampered one. The one who was asked to crawl under the bed and fetch things. The one who was indulged, the one who was protected, the one who was adored.

And then came this little girl, 23 years younger to me. I had never been very fond of kids, but when I met her, I had a change of heart. I was taken by surprise. I never realized I could love a tiny thing so much. And quickly she started growing up. From holding her gently in my arms to picking her up like a ball, to running behind her, to lying down next to her taking turns at telling stories. She is all of 5 years old. And I have a strange ‘friendship’ with her. Both of us are like kid adults. We get along great.

For my wedding we had dressed her up as a tiny bride. She wore a pink benarasi saree (yes you get miniature ready-made sarees for kids) and a golden crown. I had to persuade her months before the wedding so that she agreed. She wanted to dress up like Elsa (grrr…) or some other fairytale princess, which essentially meant wearing a pink frock! But I glorified her to be like an Indian princess (hehehe, it was a logic that worked well on her imaginative mind. She lives in Australia).

I went home 5 days before my wedding and she was my constant companion. When the house filled up with relatives, brimming with stories from different bunches of people scattered in different corners and rooms (you know what happens when relatives reunite!), both of us spent time singing songs and playing with her make-shift toys. Papers, balloons, empty cardboard boxes, old stuffed toys and dolls that I had grown up on.

Swinging on the bamboo jhoola in the balcony, going round and round, high and low, I taught her one of my favourite songs. My favourite things from Sound of Music. I had sung this song in one of my schools’ annual function. It’s a number close to my heart for all the memories attached to it. Hours of practicing, new school, new friends, new teachers, first performance. And a lesson learnt very early in life – when you are sad, you can think of happy things and make yourself feel better. You have the power to turn your day around.

Weddings are not easy. It is overwhelming. It is emotional. Although I was not “leaving home”, somewhere in some darkest corner of my heart, I knew that things were changing and I had to adapt myself quickly. Having her around, her laughter, her innocence reminded me of who I was and what I would have to leave behind. I wanted to hug her a little longer, keep her in my embrace, not ready to give up on what she represented. I am a 5 year old at heart, I realized. And with her I could continue to be that for at least a little more time.

She might not even remember the wedding when she has grown up. Pictures are a testament of great memories, and you see her hanging next to me in almost all the group pictures. She would jump in from nowhere and stand there posing with me. Through out the entire wedding, even while we sat in front of the pious fire, she kept handing me flowers. She would sneak in from behind, or run across the hall, holding a peach colored Gerbera.

Bonding with her during the wedding, I thought about how fragile childhood is and how she may not remember all the fun we were having together, and how we may not get this chance again. She may have traces of these memories and feelings etched somewhere, but no physical manifestation or understanding of this ephemeral friendship. She will become somebody in a few years, a person with a distinct identity, in discovering herself, her likes and dislikes. And we might become strangers, meeting once in a few years.

She represented Change.

I sat there holding on to her a little longer and then letting her go. With the swing moving back and forth, we swayed together like a pendulum of a clock. Time was ticking.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

How is married life treating you?

Hello you!

Guess what, I got married. It's been about 2 months. I did a lot of window shopping for my groom before I made my mind and said This is It.

Everybody has been asking me - so how is married life treating you? This is the new conversation starter. And if you know me well, you can guess that I hate this question. I would rather answer to - how are you treating your married life? Hehe.


I am holding betal leaves like a traditional Bengali bride. They said I was one of the most non-shy,
talkative brides they had ever seen! Ahem!
I feel I am caught in a whirlwind since I got married. As soon as I came back from my two week long wedding (which did not include a honeymoon), I started travelling for work. For almost an entire month I was on wheels. I have never handled so much work at the same time. And now I also have 'homework'. There are just so many things to do at home. Buying furniture, buying curtains, getting a wifi, getting a gas connection, getting things repaired, finding a household help, getting the newspaper, finding a presswala, getting a locker for the newly acquired jewellery . . . the list is never-ending and BORING. 

Life has still not come into routine. And all the items in the list have not been ticked yet. So how am I treating my married life? I am taking baby steps. I am not letting it have its way. I am making sure I breathe. I am making sure that I catch up on the latest season of House of Cards. I am making sure I read books and watch plays. I am making sure I lose senses sometimes. I am making sure that when I travel for work, I also do stuff that can go on my travel blog. I am making sure I do things that make me happy.

And now I also wrote a blog post. So yay!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

The End

The end caught me by surprise; I didn’t realize we were reaching the end already.

Am I relieved that we ended?

I am not sure if you can call this ‘relief’. I have to look for an appropriate word. A word that understands that the end is not the end. I would miss the time we spent together.

It was nice to tell you things that I was thinking about or doing or planning to do. I liked coming to you after a gruesome day at work or life (you know how a day starts when there is no breakfast in the morning!). But I pushed those thoughts away, and made fun of them instead. I love laughing with you.

This blogathon shifted my focus in the middle of chaos. It also helped me structure my thoughts. To make sense of things.

So, well, it is not with relief that I am ending this. I am ending this with the painful realization that I will miss you. And so I will be back soon. No, not tomorrow. But soon.

See you later, alligator.


S

Saturday, January 30, 2016

TV Marathon vs. Blogathon

Only one more day left for this blogathon to end!

I had the entire day to write a post today, but I didn't.

Since yesterday evening I have been watching season one of How to get away with murder on a marathon. Now I am done and have to get my hands on the second season.

Today TV marathon won over blogathon, and I have nothing much to say. So see you tomorrow! 

Friday, January 29, 2016

Digging into old cupboards

I had nothing to post today so I dug into my computer and went through old folders. This was written a few years ago. I am not sure what my state of mind was that time, but today when I read it again, it felt like a fading smell of an old favourite scarf. Word of caution - lot of rambling ahead.

Here it goes-

I feel inadequate. Like I have so much to give but I am not able to. I feel insufficient. I feel powerless. Feelings. I want to feel the strong gush of emotions that would overwhelm me and break me into a million pieces. I want the maddening thrust of feelings and to really know what that feels like. I feel like a piece of rock, not capable of feeling anything. Pain, happiness, love, hate- I don’t feel anything. Nothing drives me, nothing pushes me to my deepest darkest core of senses. I can’t feel anything in its brute force. Every feeling fizzles out. I want to hold it tight sometimes, but its flimsy bubble like skin, dissolves in a blink.

As a baby when I would be taken for injections, I never cried. The place would be a noisy hell with wailing howling babies and I would take in the needle piercing through my fragile skin with a soft subdued tick. Did I not feel anything? Is there something really wrong with me? When I was a toddler my mom would ask me- “Hey do you want this thing (e.g. something to eat)?” and very nonchalantly, I would say- “Sure, if you want to give, or not. . .up to you.” How could I be so indifferent?

I don’t feel passionate about anything. There are moments when I feel moved. But it’s just that. Moments. I come back to senses very soon, I don’t dwell on those feelings. I wipe my tears and wonder what I look like when I’m crying. Feeling so shallow about having that thought.

Everything in life is so mediocre. There are highs and lows, and I feel so balanced in between all of this. This feeling of serenity is good only when it is momentary. Otherwise it is a mundane empty canvas of peace. I want insanity. I want to feel the low like it is the lowest, I want to feel the high like it is the highest. It is never as good or as bad as it seems, I have always believed. It is the words that make a moment beautiful or miserable. And things that are REALLY beautiful or miserable cannot be expressed into words. That is why I feel inadequate.

Can you ever really explain what it means to be understood, each of your words, each of your thoughts understood in exactly the same contours and colours that they are in your mind? Can you ever express what that moment feels like when you hold your baby for the very first time? Can you ever completely describe the view of the Himalayas standing at the top of a mountain after hours of climbing? Can you even begin to explain what it feels like to bury your father?

I think I am not capable of feeling intensity. I am too balanced for my own liking. I do not fight for what I want. I would try to make do without it, may not be happily so. But I would settle. I don’t remember the last time I wanted something like crazy that I couldn’t live without. I don’t know if it is a good thing. Being balanced has helped me in my life, I have not driven myself and others nuts (ok perhaps sometimes I have) and been level headed. Or maybe I cannot deal with intense feelings and I give in. I get worked up and try to find a middle ground. All my life I have yearned for perfection- that right blend of things. The golden mean path. The best of both worlds. And in that longing, I have never fully completely totally immersed in an all consuming feeling of anything. The feeling of being completely drenched and soaked in the pouring rain of any sensation.


I want to feel. I want to devour. And be consumed. But nothing feels good enough. Or perhaps everything is only just good enough.

Edited to add: I looked back to think where this may have emerged from. This is from all the soul-searching when I couldn't figure what my passion in life was. 'Passion' is such an overused term. People seem to be passionate about everything these days. But I am not sure if people understand the intensity behind that word. I think I am still trying to find my passion, the thing that drives me everyday to wake up with enthusiasm and gives me a good sleep at night. I have found it in bits and pieces in my life, but nothing that I can't stop running after.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

I feel like a celebrity

No, no I have not got published yet. Ugh even blogadda does not acknowledge my presence in the blog world.

But what else are moms for? :D I am feeling sick like I told you before. Still I have to go to office because I am an adult, you know. I was sulking after coming back and we watched a movie on my laptop (I love the concept of evening snacks by the way! But only if they are mom-made). Then I was lying inside my blanket sulking some more and whining – “Now I have to write a blog post also!" Instantly my mom said – “Forget the blog, you are sick, you don’t have to do it. Missing it once in a while is okay.” But I decided to honor my commitment to the Blogathon. That is when I felt like a celebrity. Haven’t you read those tabloid stories where they say how an actor worked for so many hours despite high fever or completed the dance show despite the ankle injury? It felt something like that. So here I am giving my sweat, blood, tears and farts to the Blogathon. In sickness and in health, I shall continue blogging. Cheers!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Chashmebadddooor

Did you ever have a wish list, the things you will do or things you will buy once you start earning? I had a list like that. And today, after five years of earning money, I finally bought the item that used to be on top of that wish list but never on top of priority list.

Contact lenses.

My first memory of contact lenses is from the movie Baazigar :D where Shah Rukh Khan changes identity by changing the color of his eyes. It didn’t make much sense to me – he still looked the same only.

Now I am free from scratch and smudge prone spectacles. I got my glasses when I was ten years old. I was very proud when I got them. It was a valuable asset. I remember taking very good care of it in the beginning. But that didn’t last for too long. I kept breaking my glasses every other year. I have stuck to my current style of chashmas since 2008. Actually my hairstyle (bob with fringes) and my specs (black rims, long before the nerdy look was in vogue) have stayed almost the same since then. I look quite different without my glasses; I look very oriental thanks to my tiny eyes and tiny nose. It will take some time for me to get used to this. For now I am just happy about not worrying about fogging up or smudging the glasses.

Arey but wearing these lenses is quite a pain, huh. I was struggling. It is not easy to stick your finger into your eyeballs without blinking or touching your eyelashes.

Next thing I am excited to buy is shades. I always envied people acting cool with aviators and wayfarers. Now my time has come. Main bhee cool banungi :D 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

*burp*

What happens when your stomach does not keep up with all the fun that your taste buds are having? Your body refuses to digest all the fish and chaat and sweets and mother’s love and father’s pampering. And you fall sick. But you know what is the best part of falling sick at home? More love. I hate falling sick when I am all by myself in Gurgaon. I have to take care of myself, make soup, buy medicines, see the doctor, keep warm – it makes me sicker. I want to be smothered with love when I am sick. That is a luxury I get only when I am at home with mom, and I love it! My dad’s way of showing affection is by giving medicines and my mom’s way of showing affection is by making me eat and keeping me cozy – if this is not heaven then what is :D 

And in this way my long weekend has come to an end. I am glad this is going to be a short week for me. I have BIG plans to sleep all through the weekend!


Monday, January 25, 2016

Television meh!

I don’t like watching television. I don’t have a television at my place. While growing up, my sister and I always fought for the remote control. My sister won most of the times. She liked watching English movies, Bournvita Quiz Contest, Rendezvous with Simi Garewal or some Hindi soap opera. . . while I wanted to watch cartoons or music videos. Very seldom we could agree on our choice of entertainment. She was undoubtedly the reigning queen. I slowly gave up and found better things (read mischiefs) to do at home. Even after my sister left for college and I had the television and our bedroom all for myself, I never got addicted to television.

Now I don’t understand why people watch television when they can watch anything they want on the internet. I am from the Netflix generation in that I can’t wait for episodes week after week. I want all my episodes together so that I can binge watch them in a marathon. Whenever I watch television I rarely find anything of interest. And I hate it when people watch two three things at the same time on different channels by switching back and forth. I would much rather read, listen to or watch things on the internet as per my convenience.

When I come home I am forced to watch some television. Soap operas to be specific. These days even my dad has become an ardent follower of some serials. He asks my mom for updates if he happens to miss an episode. Both of them have quite intense conversations about the characters in the serial, as if they are talking about someone they know so well. It’s funny. “She is trying to frame you, don’t listen to her!” “Oh now he is going to do that!” “Look at her. So vicious. How can you trust anyone these days!” are some of the things I have overheard my parents say.

All these serials are the same I have realized. Loud make-up, long internal monologues, melodramatic dialogues, tears, facial expressions, slow motion, eye movements, bright colours, lot of gold, sensational background score. The storylines are hyper dramatized to add some masala in the uneventful daily lives of Indian middle class people who watch these serials and thank God that they are better off. These serials keep playing in the background while the mother is busy in a household chore. The dramatic sound effect is the cue for her to turn and look at the television to see what is happening.


I miss watching music videos of the 90s. Remember Silk route dooba dooba video? Falguni Pathak’s videos. . . Piya basanti re. . . Maairi . . . Shaan’s music videos. . . Colonel Cousins. . . Sonu Nigam’s videos. I may cringe while watching some of them today but they were my super favourite at that time and still bring a smile of warm innocent nostalgia whenever I am in the mood to watch them on Youtube.