Thursday, August 31, 2006

Motocycle Drive By.

As I watched a motorcycle drive by on the road this afternoon, I found myself looking at the couple on it, longingly. The woman caught my eye. We exchanged a knowing glance. And I found myself smiling at her, and she smiled back. My smile said - Been there, done that. Hers said - I know you know what I'm feeling right now. My car took a right turn, and they were out of sight. My smile, however, lingered on...

I thought about the times I have sat at the back of a bike, feeling on top of the world, inhaling the air that forces itself into your lungs bringing about a feeling of freshness, however polluted it may be.

I thought about June, and how much time I spent on a motorbike, going from one place to another in Bangalore.

I thought about Bangalore, and the people in it. The people that I now know, and have come to care about, and love. I thought about the care and love I receive when I go there.

And suddenly, I thought about my birthday, which just passed me by a few days ago. Abrupt change of thought? Not really. My birthday was made beautiful by a bunch of my friends in Delhi and Bangalore, who kept a really really big secret which exploded in supernova style on the day of my birth.

I woke up on my birthday, expecting it to be just another day. I spoke on the phone. I accepted good wishes.I met my grandmother.I went for a chinese lunch with my parents and sister. I met other members of my extended family. And I bought alcohol and food for a get together that I thought would be like any other.

On reaching home in the evening, I found a few friends already home. I talked with them for a bit, and I went in for my bath.

Only to realise that there was no shampoo. Stepping out of the loo, I walked cautiously to my parent's bathroom, and picked up a bottle of shampoo when my phone rang.

It was Nishi..."Cuddlesome..where are you?"
"I'm at home...where are you? I've been waiting for you since five o'clock!"
"Ah...I'm just two minutes away!!"
" I'm going in for a bath, so just come upstairs and I'll see you in a bit"
"No no...wait! I'm only two minutes can take my birthday present and then go for your bath"
"But...people are starting to arrive, Nishi...and I'm in my bathrobe!"
"Noooooooooo....wait! Just two minutes...I'm almost there. Just wait."
"Good...and you better like my present."
Another sighhh, this time accompanied by what Nishi and Harsh would call a motherly smile.
"Yes yes, dont worry. I'll like it."

Ten minutes later, Nishi had still not arrived. Meanwhile Naveena and I were chomping on some noodles that had been made for the evening. Then the doorbell rang and I heard Nishi call, "Cuddlllleeeeeeeeeeee!"
I wondered why she wasn't just coming up to the room and instead, calling for me from downstairs.
"Come up!"
"No!Come here!"

Now when I think about it, I don't know why I didn't suspect something...Perhaps because it was above and beyond my wildest imaginations.

I peeped out of my door. The secret stood revealed. And in beautiful tandem, I realised that there had been one, all this while.

What awaited me, accompanied by Nishi, Anupam, and a few others, was beyond my realm of understanding, imagination, expectation, or hope. And yet the secret stood smiling at me, mischevously. I simply could not believe what I was seeing. I shouted. I gaped. I went back into my room. I wondered if I was dreaming (this is not a figure of speech. I really did). I told my sister in bewilderment. I came back out. I was hugged. And kissed. I told mama. I told Abba. I cried like a baby, with happiness and disbelief.

What followed, just cannot be expressed in words. So I'll leave it at that.

It's been the best birthday ever. When I looked back and thought about it while driving, I still couldnt believe it had actually happened. And when I think about it now, I feel like it was too good to be true. But it was. Too good, and very true. I don't even know how to thank those who made it possible for me to experience what its like to sob with inexplicable happiness.

And to my birthday secret - I love you. I cannot even begin to tell you how much.

Sunday, August 27, 2006


I've been tagged. None other than The Nishi. But this blog is not about tagging at all. I don't know why I titled it that. Well, to be begin with, it was about 'being tagged' but then I said Nishi, and got reminded of my day today.

We spent 2 mindblowing hours together this evening. First in Khan market, (unfortunately my daily 'hang-out' place) frantically buying alcohol and munchies(hehe) for tomorrow...frantic because we were getting late for the Skinny Alley concert.

Into the Garden of five senses we walked. As we treaded the gravel path cautiously, our eyes adjusting to the darkness, I found myself wondering why this "Garden" was considered to be so spectacular. Frankly it was just about as spectacular as the french gardens surrounding the palace of Versaille. French manicured. Anyhow it had a charm of its own, I suppose. Slightly depleted by the loud wedding of two punjabis nearby.

We walked on, me with Nishi, Nishi with her pepper spray. Slowly the powerful voice of Jayshree Singh drifted into earshot. More and more excited with every step forward, we walked into the amphitheatre.

The next 60 minutes were what one would call breathtaking. Every hair on my body stood on end, as her voice, Amit's guitar, Gyan's bass, Jeffrey's keyboards and Jeffrey's drums(there are two Jeffreys) percolated my soul. I know it sounds cliched, but it really was like that. They reminded me of Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, Led Zep, a bit of the Doors, and some other bands - all in one! Their song "Terrified" about a mental breakdown chilled me to the bone, "pleasures of surburbia" made me sway from side to side, "Little sister" moved Nishi, and their song about crimes in the name of religion brought tears to my eyes. Oh, and the song dedicated to us..."Schizoid"..i Loved it! Amit's solo "escape the roar" reminded me of a loved one i lost a few years ago. Good memories. Made me smile.

They ended, after an overwhelming demand for another 'tune', with Steely Dan's "Green Earrings".

After the concert, after i met them, after i was unwillingly interviewed by a mobile television company called bugzee or something, i bought their CD.

To take another piece of home, away with me.

And listening to them, I drifted off to sleep, and into my 21st year of existence...

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Random, lucid thoughts.

People always say there are two ways of looking at things.

One way is to see everything the way it is, to concentrate on the good things in life.
And the other way is to see things the way they ought to be, and try to reach that goal.
Empirical and Normative.

But then,seeing how good life is the way it is, won’t catapult you into making things better. While if you see things the way they ought to be, then you're so dissatisfied, that the present goodness disintegrates and the negativity stares you in the face.

Another random thought...Isn't it true that there are no absolute goods in this world…we believe in love, and we believe in it’s goodness, but even love is only good when it is not followed by the will to possess…so it is not absolute because it has a condition attached to it in order to make it good…and that is precisely what prevents it from being absolutely good.

So, however happy we are, won't humans never stop looking at things the way they should be i.e. perfect and ideal.Absolutely good. And doesn't that mean there is no such thing as contentment?

But that is a disconcerting thought because everyone hopes to be content someday…but if we are constantly wondering how to make life better and easier and happier and more good, then we can’t possibly be content…

So then what is it like to feel contentment? And those who claim to be content..are they lying…? Or do they not have dreams to become better and happier, and lead fulfilling lives? When they say they are content and happy with lives do they mean they have the best, (which is not possible because they keep wanting to make things better even unconsciously) or do they mean they lead lives with no hope of a better future?

I'm puzzled. And content with this bewilderment.

That puzzles me even more. : )

Friday, August 25, 2006

Uh Oh

Looks like my last blog became a wee bit more controversial than i'd hoped. So, this is for anyone else who reads it and has the same misconceptions -

Im not feeling bad about life, and self-pity is not a word in my dictionary.

That particular post wasn't meant to be a feel-good post, so my creative writing is having the desired effect, that's all.

I wasn't attacking anyone, I was observing.

It's been a learning experience, and I was sharing it...

I said 'when we're busy we don't have time for people', NOT 'when you're busy, you dont have time for me.'

Yea, I felt alone. But after all, I was the only one doing "nothing", wasnt I?

I wrote about a resolve to never put anything before my relationships.

That's all..Its just a blog.

So, Hakuna Matata.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Stoppp. And watch the world go by

Probably the only advantage of being completely jobless for 3 months, is that you get to see somethings you forget to see when you're not doing 'nothing'. It's been a month since I've been home, and I think I see what people mean when they say that they're breathing but not really living. Human relationships seem to have taken the back seat. Other things have taken up primary importance...

Everybody's so busy all the time. I have to go for a court case, I'll discuss this with you later. I have to go set up someone's house. I'm doing some work, call me later. I'm too far from where you are, I'll see you some other day. I'm sleeping, go away.I'm watching tv, I'll call you back.

Sure, I've been busy too.I'm not taking the moral highground here. In fact, I'm I sometimes like this too?? I stopped in my tracks. I can't now remember if i have or not. But I felt like I learnt something from doing just nothing. I realised that when we're busy, we're so busy that we don't have time for people.

Last night, I spent a lot of time at a nightclub with some friends after their long tiring day. What did we do? We stood inside in silence, consuming copious amounts of alcohol, unable to have a conversation because the decibel level of the music drowned out any noise made by human organs. And everyone was happy to just wind down, in complete silence, with some Ethanol.CH3CH20H. Ethanol.

Over the last month, I've called people I care about several times, without getting called back. I've taken out time to meet them, but something always comes up. Am i like this sometimes? I must be.

This last month, I've had my stomach knotted up all the time. I've felt very alone. Even though I'm constantly around people. It's like what Anette Benning said in American Beauty - I'm standing in the middle of a crowd, screaming my lungs out, but no one's listening. I mean, i'm not exactly in that situation...but I feel somewhat like how she probably did. I want to talk to people, I want to look at beautiful things as i pass by them and appreciate them, i want to share things with people i love...but no one's got any time.

I know in about 10 days, I will no longer be doing nothing. But I'm so scared that I'll become what I've seen this last month, that I hope I never let myself. I don't want to be so busy that I don't have the time to listen to what someone has to say, I don't want to be so busy that I can't appreciate the beauty that's constantly around us amidst the ugliness, I dont want to be so busy that I'm too tired at night to engage with someone i care about, I don't want to be so busy that my entire life goes by and I realise - Oh, I wish I'd listened, I wish I'd appreciated, I wish I'd engaged.

I've learnt something about lives of people who are on the run, on the road, on call all the time...because I've had a chance to stand aside and say - Hey, i'm doing nothing right now. I've just stopped. And I'm watching the world go by.

Hello is this Shreya?
Startled by the phone ringing, I wake up drowsily. I expect a familiar voice, the one I wake up to on most days. But today its someone else.

Hello is this shreya?
No this is not shreya who is this?
I'm your friend.
Uhhhh...I dont think we know eachother.
Oh, i know we do..i might've gotten the name wrong, but i recognise that voice..

I hung up. There was someone who had been calling for a Shreya, but it was not this number. I see stalkers have multiple mobiles these days. And they're not afraid of the police. They're relentless and clever. And yet, these new qualities don't change them from being who they really are.
Alone, Desperate, Lonely. I feel sorry for them. And wish them all the worst in their future endeavours.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Was just talking to a close friend about why I'm anti blogging. Because it's like a journal entry, but everyone can read it. So what? So this ... When I write it, I'm writing keeping in mind that people will read what I write. What I write here won't be raw and spontaneous. At least not as much so, as in a journal entry. I'll be an open book. But at the same time, I like to be heard sometimes. And I'm an open book anyway. And I'm going away. I will be away for a long time. So this is just another way to stay in touch with those I love.