Tuesday, July 31, 2007


On this day, six years ago, we stepped into a world we called our own. A world we loved, a world we shared with so many wonderful people I can't write all their names down.

And between us over three and a half years we were together, we shared an unspoken closeness, never expressed in words or feelings, either to each other or to anyone else. We've never classified each other as best friends, it seems absurd to do so. Just part of a group with changing members: talking about nothing, cribbing about everything, letching at cycling girls from the hostel front wing, calling meetings to discuss "official" events, saying "to hell with grades" when secretly we knew it mattered the most. A hundred other things which still remain part of my best memories.

Felt, but never expressed.

Today when he's leaving, there are no tears to say goodbye. Just a heartfelt smile at the amazing journey we've made.

~ For D ~

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Different Strokes

Oh, Love to some is like a cloud
To some as strong as steel

For some a way of living
For some a way to feel

And some say love is holding on
And some say letting go
And some say love is everything
And some say they don't know

Taken from John Denver's Perhaps Love

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Drip Drip Drip

Water everywhere. I look around me, and I see nothing. Just the thick, heavy air. But it's wet, uncomfortably. Flowing down from your hair, your face, your %$^^#&#.

Water by itself is great. But when it comes out of you, YUCK.

I hate summer and I hate the humidity. (Four months later I'll hate winter as well.)

Monday, July 23, 2007

Buddies of a Time Gone By

For two years when I was aged 16 and 17, I lived in a place which changed my life forever.

Looking back at life, I'm not very fond of myself till I reached 12. Since then I think I've become better [questioning sideward bend of the head to everyone who's known me since then]. But as I heard from AJ recently, I didn't exactly have the good guy image right upto when I was 16.

Six guys in the one school, in two rooms, and in three a little later. A hostel with people starting out on their Class XI thru practising doctors. Each of the other five has taught me, in one way or the other, something that I have carried through all the way till my 24th.

During the times we banged on each others doors to sleepily run to those tuition classes at 6 am. From when we stooped under the barbed wire fence to save two kilometers of walking. From when we ran back to get our breakfast ten minutes before the start of school. The walk through an eternally shaded field of rubber trees on the way to school, talking about how the rubber was processed on one day, how one of us should become Indian President the next.Evening TT and volleyball sessions in the backyard.Trooping down at 7.30 every evening to the mess hall for the best food I've eaten in any hostel to-date. The religiously allocated one hour of TV watching that was permitted each day. The weekend outings to movies or relatives' houses. Talking about girls without talking to them. The "finger-lickin' good" Christmas candlelight dinner in the courtyard. My dear roomie who swore to God he wanted to change the Indian administrative system. The kid from Kuwait who remains till today one of the best dancers I've known. The guy from near my place who had the largest stock of PJs ever. The purebreed mallu who true to his dream, managed to work his way up the CA ladder. And the dude who calls himself DB, who has, unintentonally, taught me a lot about just how to be.

Five friends and two years, that made me who I am today.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The Reader

It's a quarter past six. I'm inside a 20' x 10' container. To my right on a laptop screen a series of blue and red numbers run side by side. Each minute of this sequence rakes in approximately USD 10. To my left a little away from my chair a door is partly open, giving me a view of loud machinery and screaming men 30 feet above the gound. In my hand I'm holding a paperback edition of The Namesake, bought on Residency Road, Bangalore for INR 60. 50 more pages to go, and for me it'll take no less than fifty minutes. I've always been a slow reader, even before I lost my close association with books ten years ago.

As a kid I had my own timetable. Never written it down, but more or less followed it religiously. Get back from school at 5 pm. Eat a really late lunch (I normally took sandwiches to school for the "lunch break") with a book beside me, and then flop on the bed beside my study table till the clock hits 7. This is my formal "study time"... till about 9 or 9.30 every evening. Homework, mostly. If there's a test, a little reading. No tuitions (thankfully) so crazy hours of endless assignments my classmates used to have were spared for me. And then back to books again. I had this schedule since I was nine.

Then Class X came, boards came, Plus-2 came, hostel life came, crazy tuition assignments came (yup, to me too!), movie mania came and my reading kind of died, unable to handle the load. Since then till today, I have read at the most ten books.

But when I read them I enjoy them. Like today. Now. As I turn the pages slowly (realizing my reading speed is dropping by the day -- isn't it supposed to go the other way round?), from the corner of my eye I can see the satisfying blue and red train. More money.

In ten minutes I'll have to put on that white hard hat, wear those black-dotted gloves, snap on those uvex safety glasses and walk sixty steps to a crazy floor above, where I have to shout to make myself heard. But till then, I'm in a place two thousand miles away, a time twelve years ago, with the light of a 60W bulb overhead colouring my 3 Investigators paperback yellow, feet propped up against the bedside wall, a bowl of salted peanuts beside me, struggling as always to finish a couple more pages before the news on DD-1 tells me it's time to get up.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Watch Me

I've been told there are three kinds of people in this world:

1. The ones who watch things happen
2. The ones who wait for things to happen
3. The ones who make things happen

As I sit back and watch the world go by, I wonder if it's OK that I don't regret it.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Lessons from Life

In 9 months I have learned…

... that in one way or the other, traveling is what life is all about
... that in any job, paperwork is the most important thing
... that some things are meant to change and some others won’t
... that relationships are more about trust than anything else
... to say salaam alaykum without thinking about how it sounds
... to like Avril Lavigne and Christina Aguilera
... that no one works at a rig for “love of the oilfield”
... that there’re a lot more movies to be watched
... to enjoy the kharouf from a plate for six and the laban afterwards
... to put family above everything else
... that everyone has something good to teach you
... that if the problem is not choice, it is because you don’t get to choose
... that most Chinamen are friendlier than what they are made out to be
... that no tears and no speeches make saying goodbye more special (D: This I have to learn from you!)
... that friends will be friends whether they’re right next to you or half way across the world
... that life would have sucked without e-mail
... to enjoy my cooking and the time that goes into it
... that home is where the heart is.

I wonder what the next 9 will teach me.