Remembering Lucky..

It seems like only yesterday

When i rang the doorbell,

you came running along

A wagging tail and doggy smell.

Only yesterday, you licked

My sweaty palms, when I came back

From the evening football sessions

You patiently waited to share my snack. :p

I remember you sat beside me

While I bored you with my school tales.

You were my friend, always listening

All ears for every detail.

Then one day you went to the vet

And you did not come back..

You left a big void in our lives

One less member in our pack.

Now you’re gone, I look at our house,

I see no ball of black fur cosily spread

Across the floor, or on the mat

Or on that big vacant space on my bed

But then I take solace in knowing

That you’re sure in a better place, a better time

Lots of chicken & your fav haddis

And maybe a lady doggy by your side!

Happyy birthdayyy Luckyyyy. We all miss youu.Sure you’re rocking it wherever you are!! 😘😘😎😎

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Dried colours

She sketched on a canvas everyday

With her beautiful hands, her thoughts

She let the colours flow and talk

A definite natural, she was.

Day in day out she drew out her structures

She used all of them shades & colour

Time went by & her art grew stronger

Her dreams closer, all set to conquer

But then the people came, they shook their heads

“This is not a career”, they chorused

They gave her their advices, a whole list

All of them, the same old options.

She sat there dismayed – a yearning to be accepted

For all the beauty she had to offer.

But her art was met by blind eyes

For they couldn’t see her prosper.

Defeated, she turned towards the crowd

The world she had to follow

Definitions laid out, barriers drawn

A world without a glow.

So she dawned that corporate attire

& got up everyday, sunup

Just like the rest, a billion others

To repeat that mundane setup.

The dog who wagged his tail

Yesterday, as I walked back home, a dog (a lovely brown coloured one) came towards me, wagging its tail. He looked really happy to see me and I paused to look at him, trying to reciprocate some of the pleasantry

The dog wagged his tail furiously and i smiled back at him. As our conversation was going nowhere ( :p ), I headed up and the dog started to follow. I made that hey stop gesture with my hand and he stopped on his tracks, still wagging his tail.

I bolted the door behind me and went up to my house (first floor) – after an hour or 2 i walked up to the balcony and saw, to my surprise, that the dog was still there, wagging his tail. Waiting. I felt a sudden surge of guilt, but then got an office call. A presentation had to be submitted and my team was waiting for my update. I went back inside and started working on it. As i started working on it, i fell asleep. The work was left half complete

Next day morning, I got ready for office, all set to face the music. As i headed towards the door, i opened it to see the dog was waiting there. The same dog from last night. On seeing me, he started wagging his tail again. All that guilt i’d felt yesterday resurfaced , only manifold. But he wagged his tail, like nothing had happened. I immediately opened my bag and gave him 2 of my chicken rolls. And patted him on the head. I watched him gobble it down in no time. He looked up at me for more but I was like itna hi milega bhai, mujhe bhi khaana hai! (That’s all you’ll get, i gotta eat too!). He followed me till the auto and looked on as I boarded one and sped off. He was still wagging his tail.

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Dogs teach us unconditional love, they give love and expect none in return. And we with all our brains get it allll wrong sometimes 😅. Let’s try being a wee but cooler and love everyone around us. No expectations 😎

What made me (finally!) cook

I was never much into cooking all through my teenage years. As my mother absolutely loves cooking and is rather finicky about the hygiene in the kitchen, I had restricted (to almost no) entry in the kitchen. Occasionally my sister would dabble at cooking a few special dishes on special occasions like anniversaries or festivals and I would chip in as a helping hand. But nothing more than that. And let’s face it, i was a wee bit lazy :p . So all through this time (school+undergrad), I never really took the ownership to try and make any dish. (Unless you count making readymade noodles).

It was in the trip to Europe in my MBA exchange program (when I was 22) that I really had a self made meal. As I was rather pampered by mom‘s excellent cooking back home, European food never seemed appetizing enough for my desi pallette. And being a bong, a meal without rice is no meal at all. So one month into the MBA exchange, I decided enough’s enough. Let’s open those youtube cooking 101 videos and try something! It was then that I made rice for the first time at 22 (shameful, right?). As you cannot have rice as is, I cut a few potatoes, boiled them & mixed it up with the rice, added salt and it tasted YUM!

Cooking food is easy i concluded. I had this exact same dish for about a week. Then I switched back to the canteen food served at the university.

The change (both from european to the rice-potatoes and back to european) was certainly worth it. Folks back home were proud of this little feat :p

PS: I did have a bout of constipation in that whole rice week. Passed when i made some changes to the diet :p


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Image source: Google images

A school-time incident

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Ever been scared of something or someone?  Like a fear you just couldn’t get rid of, like it was a part of you? When you build your own assumptions around it and end up being miserable thinking about it the whole time?

Well, as a kid  there are many such things you may be scared of. Specifically when you’re all thin, short & spectacled – the world seems to be a bad place. You look around you see off things, have a few bad episodes and you are quick to make conclusions.

There was this one particular chapter when I was about 7 years old. The walk to the bus stop wasn’t an easy one. It was a short 5 minute walk, around 7:30 in the morning. But then there was this group of 3 women. They all were really tall and wore burkhas. They just looked intimidating. Simple. Every time I passed by, they stopped and looked, and I used to hurry past, frightened. I was sure they were plotting something, and I always felt they were talking about me (as they always stopped talking when I walked by). “Why would they stop talking if they meant well”, I would think to myself. I didn’t want to trouble my family about the matter and I was sure I would be labelled uncool if anyone at the school knew. So I kept it to myself & this went on for about a month. 

On a Monday, I was rushing for school. Had gotten late and had one of those unit tests scheduled for the day. As I was running, I tripped over a rock and fell down. I saw yellow all over and semi-fainted 😛 . I remember waking up in the evening to find myself on my bed. My mom was there in the room as well.

“All good?” she asked, smiling.

“Yes. But I missed my Unit Test!” I exclaimed.

“Thats alright. I’ve already spoken to your teacher. She’ll arrange a re-test for all the absentees. Don’t worry. Just lie down and take rest.”

“What happened?” I asked

“Well, you tripped and fell on a rock. You have a slight sprain but nothing to worry. That good lady helped gave you first aid and brought you back home” Mom said, pointing towards the living room.

“Who?”, I enquired, my curiosity level peaking.

“Nadira. That lady sitting over there (she said pointing towards the living room). She and a few friends are pursuing her higher studies in Delhi University. Great of her to help you out there!” Mom said.

I looked outside. It was the same lady. The tall, burkha lady. She looked back at me and smiled. I smiled back and whispered “Thank you”.

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We live in a world where bad things happen. All the time (strange isn’t it? Hello Digital Media!). What we see and hear influences the way we see things. Our own past experiences shape the way things we see tomorrow. But experiences are good as long as they don’t hinder our ability of seeing things unbiasedly and completely rationally. 

Getting to the truth (if it really matters that is) is difficult, but not reacting to ‘not so credible’ sources of information might be a good starting point. Also, questioning your own set of beliefs and giving some one a clean slate, irrespective of where they came , from might just be a good idea.

Image Source: Google Images

Them good old Rajdhani train rides :)

The good old Rajdhani. That 5 o clock train. 3 suitcases and a couple polythene bags and we (family!) were ready to go – Delhi to Calcutta. One trip that we all looked forward to. For there was an old world magic to Kolkata. For we had the most delightful aunts and cool grandparents to get to.

The train journey was how we kickstarted the vacay. The Rajdhani ride was always memorable. 16 hours long, the train journey and kinda like the countdown to that amazing something. A prolonged sense of anticipation.

The blaring horn of the train always marked the start of the journey & the guy who sang “Cheeeeeeps” (chips :p) . I always looked at his basta (bag) full of goodies longingly and my mom would always say “kono dorkar nai” (there is no need for that). But then the Ol’ train had its own food to offer – there was the “welcome snack”, the old sandwich and a samosa, that continental dinner. And the soups and the vanilla ice-creams, all coming in 1-2 hour intervals, food was always given aplenty in the Rajdhani. Then there were these suffocating toilet rooms devoid of toiletry :p & in those train alley walks to get there, I would love to peer at the compartments and see what was going on – for i was quite the curious one. 😅 Next there was this “staring outta the big windows” period – at the fields, the countryside – amazing to see people living in those hut houses, kids playing cricket in those clean green fields and the older folks doing the everyday chores by the rail tracks.

But the best part among all of this was the speed of the journey, how remarkably this train let things slow down, for a while. For that 16 hour period we stopped chasing, competing, rat racing – we took our breaks from our busy lives, got together, talked, laughed, shared stories, exchanged gyaaan ( :p ) and most importantly spent some time together. That little period in which time just slowed down a tad, allowing us to catch up and enjoy those priceless moments. And that “slow” time used to pass by in no time.

It’s sad how the train just disappeared, economics and technology just had to butt in, taking those amazing times away from us. Now, you say train in your circles, and you’re greeted by “paagal hai kya? 2 ghante ki flight hai” (“crazy? It’s just a 2 hour flight) But then we have lost our patience today, in the fast moving world. We want everything quick and ready. Damn, even the food is fast now! We want quick entertainment, quick relationships. We want them big moments, But but but, (Gyaan coming up) we still got time. There always is. In all the chasing, all the getting, all that achieving, slow down a tad and let time go easy. Enjoy those little moments that are all that really matter. Take it slow people! Relive them Rajdhani moments again 🙂

Image source: Google images

The morning surprise!

It was one of those Wednesday mornings, bang in the middle of those office weeks. It was a little past 11 and all my flatmates had left for office already. Some days you take awfully long to get up not because you’re physically tired but your own thoughts, especially the negative ones, tend to weigh you down. Those times when the negative thoughts far outnumber the positive ones so much so that you cannot rationally work out a solution. So i just lay there, paralysed almost, reluctant to get up.

And all of a sudden. Ting tong the door bell rang, breaking me off my thoughts.

I obviously had no intention of opening the door, far too wrapped in my thoughts. Or perhaps just a momentary pleasure of letting the man outside to suffer, just the way i was.

“Ting tong ting tong ting tong” – the bell rang 5 times more.

“Man sure wants to get in”, i said to myself. Somehow, I pushed myself out of my bed and went to open the door.

It was bhaiyya (the domestic help). He looked really worried.

“I lost my bike keys”, he said, his lips quivering.

“Look around, it’ll be here, i said, pointing towards the kitchen, a bit nonchalantly, as i was still lost in my own gloom. I helped him look around a little but we both were unable to find it. I asked him a few questions and reassured him that he could always make duplicate keys. As he continued searching frantically, i returned to my room. Back in bed again, back in the prison of my negative thoughts.

5 minutes later, he started banging on my room door. Uffo, i said to myself. I opened the door. There he was standing, smiling.

“I found the keys”, he said, with a huge sigh of relief.

“Good good! Be careful from now on”, I said patting him on the back.

“Thank you bhaiyya. Aap na hote toh pata nhi kya hota (thank you brother, if you wouldn’t be there to open the door, i don’t know what would’ve happened)”

Then he gave me a hug, thanked me again and left.

I stood there smiling. Just 5 minutes back i was there, succumbing to my negativity. And out of nowhere, there i was, a hero – bringing happiness to this man’s life. The energy seemed to return to my limbs. Without any further ado, I started getting ready for office.

Image Source: Google images