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Friday, December 27, 2013

Another year!

So this blog turns six today! And what an eventful six years they've been. I've grown from stupid writing to sad writing to fairly meaningful writing and I guess this is a mirror of the way my life has transformed over the past half-decade.
My earliest posts are no longer available to read since I deleted them all some time back in a cathartic act of leaving behind the past and beginning afresh. Did it work? Well, yes of course it did, but the one terrible side effect was that I turned away from blogging as a whole. I guess I needed a break from documenting my life and thoughts for public viewing. Moreover, I didn't have much time since I was busy getting a master's degree and doing other awesome things. This year, I received my degree and here is an account of what awesomeness I remember of each of the past twelve months:

January
I welcomed in the new year with a best friend and her family. A fortnight later, I took my first ever solitary train ride to attend another best friend's wedding.

February
A much-awaited and stressed-over department fest finally fell through. Maadhyam 2013 was a success despite all the crazy goings-on and madness it had spewed.

March
11 print journalism students: A trip to Mahbubnagar district, Andhra Pradesh.  So the magazine we were supposed to bring out didn't happen, but we still came back with memories of a lifetime and tons of good photos.

April
Perhaps the most difficult month I had. The end of the best two years of my life; so many difficult decisions to make but still accompanied with great times - memorable nights out with favorite people.

May
The beginning of a new job which took me on a wonderful trip to Munnar, Kerala. New friends; beautiful memories, One of the most eventful months of the year despite the bad weather.

June
I moved back home. Lots of mixed feelings but home is home and there's no other place like it :)

July
Winning the affection of children I teach has been one of the highlights of my job. I never thought I could love kids but it turns out I can and I do. No matter how loud or annoying they may be at times.

August
A quick trip back to my favorite Indian city - Hyderabad. Seeing all my favorite people again was just what I needed after three months of working very hard.

September
Nothing in particular but I guess I got better at my job, which is always a good thing :P

October
Convocation. I topped my class, earned a gold medal, met old friends once again. Need I say anymore?

November
My birthday month is always the best, d'uh. This time I got a present in the mail too! *Happiness*
I also got addicted to The Vampire Diaries. Brilliant show that. No dearth of super hot guys to swoon over. :P

December
Well, it's almost over. And it's always awesome because it gives us a chance to evaluate our lives and think of what we want in the coming year; it's a reason to be hopeful again and do all the "cathartic acts of leaving behind the past and beginning afresh" that do us good. So if you haven't yet done so, hurry up. Let go, let be, and look ahead. Good things are just about to happen, I promise.

And when they do, why not document it as the picture below suggests? I know I will.


Thanks S, for sharing the pic! 

Until next time (or next year, rather), wishing you a happy, healthy and safe end of 2013!


Monday, November 18, 2013

Happy Birthday to me! - The hits and the misses

The past two years away from home have put me in the bad habit of expecting too much excitement on special days . So it's no surprise that my birthday this year was kind of boring since  I'm back in the real world and all.  BIG miss. I miss the student life. I miss UoH, I miss Hyderabad. 
But then, here's what made things better - a surprise parcel in the mail, with a gift and card from a best friend. Thanks S, you made my day a super hit. :) 

I finally feel truly grown up. It's like a mix of wise, unshockable, and jaded. Ok no its not that bad. What I really mean is that I have truly snapped out of my fairy tale notions regarding things like love and romance, and I'm no longer anxious about certain, ahem, experiences.  Practicality is like my middle name these days. And it's such a relief to not FEEL so much for a change. Definitely a hit. Though I wonder, if this is what twenty-something feels like, what will thirty-something be like, forty-something, and so on? Perhaps it's not a good idea to live very long. Just a thought. 


Next miss, I think I'm in the wrong kind of job. But what keeps me going is that it keeps me connected to Hyderabad, which I like. I shall feel a little lost and homeless when the connection snaps. Perhaps I should turn nomadic then, take to living on aeroplanes and wandering the globe as I please!. Now THAT would be a real hit!

Lastly, my blog is dying. It is in urgent need of CVR. Creative-Verbal.Resuscitation. :P I have got to make more of an effort to tend to this place, breathe new life into it now. That is one of my birthday resolutions. 

Otherwise, life is very good. And the predominant emotion I feel these days is gratitude. :)  I think turning older is a lot about appreciating the things we have, the ones we don't seem to notice or care about when we are young and naive and craving for everything and everyone that is out of reach. I don't mean that we shouldn't have aspirations; of course we should; aspiration gives life some purpose. But as we work towards achieving all that we want, it helps to first recognize and value all that we already have :)

Ok, enough of preaching. Last hit - I'm finally blogging again after a long hiatus. Hope it's the first step of the above mentioned CVR . :) 



Sunday, July 14, 2013

This one's for you.

"Why don't you blog anymore?" asks my good friend, Phoram.

It is not the first time she is asking. She has repeatedly inquired about the absence of my once frequent Sempiternal Scribbles over the past few months. My answer is complicated. I do blog, in the sense that I do have a lot to say, in my head at least. I keep thinking of updating this space but then don't get around to it either because I don't find the time or I'm too lazy or unsure of whether I really want to share what's on my mind.

My relationship with my writing was never this complicated. If I wanted to pen something, I would and share it without hesitation, not caring who reads it or what they think of it. But perhaps I was young and naive then. Or bold. Perhaps this blog was primarily an outlet for my young-adulthood rantings and rebellion, or a space where I confessed all the many things I used to feel for people who were once important to me.

Or till recently a platform I used to promote myself and my words, an avenue I often attempted to win blogging contests with. But none of that appeals to me now. It seems strangely adolescent. Perhaps I have changed too much, though I'm not sure if it's for the better or worse, or whether I’d like to label it growing older or more mature.

What I do know is that my friend Phoram misses reading my blog. A few other people too keep asking why I don't write more here. It touches me in a way I cannot even express, so for them at least, I am going to try again. The past few months have been full of change and overwhelming emotions. It would be right to say that I didn't know how to properly channel them all, so safely stowed them away inside, the way I do so many things.

The highlight of recent times has of course been the completion of my master's degree and moving back home against my own innermost desires. It has been an emotionally charged and draining time with me often feeling both elated and sad at the same time – an exhausting mix of polarities. I fell in love with a city and then bid adieu to it, earlier than expected. One of my best friends didn't meet me to say goodbye. It made me question everything I thought I knew about our friendship. I spoke to him today after months and it was funny how we talked like nothing has changed, updating each other about our lives just like we used to. The conversation reeked of time moving on but also reassured me that perhaps somethings never change even if we feel certain they have. After the call ended, I felt both happy and sad, nostalgic for a time I know will never ever come back. For a long while, I just lay in my semi-dark room contemplating how very strange the nature of life is.

In other news, I have started a new job and it's the most challenging thing I've ever taken up even though on the surface it seems like “just a teaching job”. The days pass into weeks and I wait for the moment I will be able to take up writing full-time. Things are often not how we want them to be but personally, I feel like there is a compass within me, pointing me in the right direction my life is supposed to take. I am confident that things will eventually turn out just as I want them; or perhaps even better than I can imagine, all I have to do is believe and keep going. If there is one thing living away from home has taught me it is to have faith of the real kind – the one that doesn't waver no matter what new seemingly insurmountable obstacle seems to stare you in the face.


And it is with this faith that I blog after such a long time. Faith that friends like Phoram love my writing and want me to keep at it no matter how busy or tired I get with other things. So this one is for you, Phoram, and also you, if you are reading this and keep returning to my blog despite the fluctuations in my writing frequency.  

Sunday, April 21, 2013

People cannot be "read"

My brother once told me that he wished we wouldn't automatically read any text our eyes fell on. For instance, on the road, we continuously read every sign, every billboard, every shop name that our gaze goes to, even if we don't really want to know what it says. - The mere act of viewing it makes us read and comprehend as long as it is a language we know, and this according to my brother can get exhausting. It seemed like a weird idea to me because I anyways can't read things unless they're close enough and usually wish I had a permanent magnifier attached to my eyes, but it struck me that when we are in a foreign place, where we don't know the language of the street signs and billboards, we are free of the "burden" of constantly reading everything because we just don't understand the language!
I wish we could look at people that way - just look at them and not "read" or try to "understand" them. Not make assumptions about what they're like, what are their intentions, what they think of you, etc. I wish we could look at and engage with them in the same way we do with a foreign language. We learn slowly, one phrase, one verb, one tense at a time, and we're never quite sure of our knowledge until many years have passed. We explore it layer by layer, rather than all at once. We go slowly but surely.A lot of times, we give up because we realise that it's not for us, and that's completely okay because we end up cherishing the little bit that we do learn.
But with people, we often feel that one meeting is enough to get a general idea of them. that a few conversations give us insight into what they're like and what are their intentions. We go fast, ripping apart layer after layer of their personality without stopping to properly understand anything at all. In this age of the internet and cell phones and instant, constant contact, we think we can know people quicker and better. We look at people and automatically read them, just like we look at text in a familiar language and involuntarily read it.
Is that why it's called Facebook? We look at faces and read them like books? I wish we wouldn't. Because isn't it exhausting? 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Will I ever get used to moving on?

They say that it is a privilege to have traveled a lot, especially at a young age. I think I fall into this 'privileged' category, having lived in three countries despite coming from a background where most people never move out of their hometowns. And I often think that by now, I should have reached a point where the idea of packing up and moving on should not be intimidating anymore. It should come naturally, but it doesn't. On the contrary, it makes me sad. I've realised that I'm a very clingy sort of person. I may not cling to people and relationships, but I cling to their memories. And how.
Today, at the last night of the annual university fest, I had all intentions of enjoying myself considering that it is my last semester here. But instead, all I could do was brood and think of times gone by and all the people who are soon going to be just memories in my mind, as soon as I move back home. What makes it worse is the friendships that have already ended, prematurely, without me having a clue why or how. Why did a three-day fest go by without so-called friends making any effort to talk to me, let alone hang out with me? Why was I often with people whom I have only recently begun to know? And why oh why did I so often feel like the loneliest person in the world, even though I know I am not?
The prospect of change messes with my head in the worst ways possible. And my over-emotional heart doesn't help matters. I hate endings. I hate moving on. I hate doubting the shelf life of friendships. I hate change. And I don't think I will ever get used to it all. I will never get used to moving on. It's the worst feeling in the world. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Busy-ness, happyness, peace.

The past two days have been super busy. Actually, the past two MONTHS have been super busy. Or maybe I can round it up and say the past two YEARS have been super busy. And although it is kind of crazy, busy-ness is my most favorite state of being. It makes me feel alive. So even though I have a lot of things to do, I couldn't resist taking a few minutes to write about the past two days:

There were 2 public screenings of a short film I helped make on the theme of 'Walkable Cities'. It was one of three films, and was received reasonably well, which made me happy. To be honest, I'm not very good at making films,; I would much rather be in front of the camera than behind it, (which is surprising because I thought I was a very self-conscious, shy person but I guess  I'm not really). But nonetheless, making the film was rewarding and I guess it's something I want to get better at if I have the chance.

After the screening yesterday, one of my favorite professors who came to the event took us out for ice-cream, and I had a really nice time.The cab ride back to campus was enjoyable, with the cool breeze blowing in through the windows and loud music playing on the stereo and all of us chatting amicably about movies, life, and love.

In the evening, it rained. I went for pizza with two friends, and we sat outdoors stuffing ourselves with delicious food and watching it drizzle. Later, we watched a Hindi rom-com and drank Red Bull. And today morning, we went for brunch at a famous restaurant called Chutneys. As we waited for the place to actually open for the day, we whiled away an hour at a book store, reading astrology predictions for the year ahead. And although a lot of time was spent in doing all these things, I think I deserve it because I've been working so hard and moreover, these are my last few months in Hyderabad and I want to make the most of them.

I have realized (too late, perhaps) that I have far too many blessings in life to have the slightest right to complain. So I'm going to try and live life in the only way that makes sense but is also the hardest- one day at a time - and see where destiny takes me. And no matter where that is, one thing I know for sure is that it will be exactly where I need to be. :)

P.S. There's a reason why I've misspelled the word 'happiness' in the title. Remember, 'The Pursuit of Happyness'?


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Random facts about my life which you don't need to read

Today is World Radio Day.
Tomorrow is Valentine's Day.
I have a ton of work to do.
I should not be blogging. I have not been blogging much at all recently. I miss it.
I did a radio show today morning and it made me happy.
I need to record several episodes of a show about books but I can't find the time. I feel bad about that.
I bunked a class today because I simply couldn't trust myself to stay awake.
I went to hostel to sleep but I was too exhausted to even doze off.
The fourth and final semester of my master's course is draining every drop of energy I have and making me go crazy. But I am loving it, in some strange way. In fact, I wish it wouldn't ever end. Because I don't know what lies beyond it. And the possibilities both excite and scare me.
I am busier than I have ever been before. I am still single on yet another stupid Valentine's day. But I am high on a new love song I can't stop singing:

Beimaan. Dil bada beimaan. 
Hota nahi aasaan isey hai samjhana 
Beimaan, Dil bada be-imaan 
Tere liye shaitan 
Meri naa ek maana 

Dil jeete yaa main jeetu 
Dekhungi dekhega tu 
Lo dil se sharat lag gaye 
Mujhe tto teri lat lag gayi, lag gayi 
Zamaana kahe lat yeh ghalat lag gayi 
Mujhe tto teri lat lag gayi, lag gayi
Zamaana kahe lat yeh galat lag gayi




And now, I should return to work.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Dancing words

The music lures me no more,
the dance floor's lost its charm.
The jumping, jostling mass
I was once a part of,
seems alien. Strangely amusing.
Amusingly strange.

Why do people dance in big crowded gatherings
with loud, deafening music?
Why not just in the solitary confines of a closed room?
What is it about bodies
that they need to be shaken and spun
and twirled and whirled in the company of other bodies?
What is it about noise and sweat
that convinces one of having a "good time"?
Why does it suddenly seem like my idea of a very "bad time"?

Always a recluse, I am just getting worse by the day.
And they say I should get married.
How can I, when I seem to hate people?
And every single one of their social eccentricities?
It seems fake. Meaningless. Comical.
There is so much more, I want to do.
If only I knew, what exactly it is. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Akash-vani

Most people associate that with a radio prograamme, but i'm talking about the latest release from Bollywood. I went to watch Akash-Vani with zero expectations, except that the lead actor Kartik Tiwari would look cute. And I was in for a pleasant surprise, because not only does he look VERY cute, but the story actually has some substance. The beginning seems to be going nowhere but the first twist comes soon enough and that's when the emotional roller-coaster ride begins: the characters are relate-able, their predicaments draw you in, and the film successfully raises questions and/or provokes thought about certain societal issues that don't get as much attention as they perhaps should - changing times and the growing divide between the thought processes of parents and their children. It tries to give a message without being preachy and is all in all a cute love story that anyone will enjoy.
Music is good and the cinematography is beautiful. And the lead pair carry on their chemistry from their debut film together, Pyar ka Panchnama.
In sum,  I'm glad I went to see it, even more glad that I went without expectations, and yes, I am even more in love with Kartik Tiwari now. ♥