I went for a trek for the very first time in my life. Though I’ve got bronchial asthma, I managed through my breathlessness to climb up and down a hillock (first time I was aware of the muscles I didn’t know existed, even my buttocks pained, cause I feel hard on my bums twice while descending. I couldn’t even sit the next day).
I signed up for contemporary dance classes. It’s a certificate course offered by my college and I’m loving it.
I met some of my favourite authors and yes for the first I managed to get some signed copies of their novels. (For a bibliophile that matters!!!)
I started writing my first ever novel, “Untold” !! It’s different I didn’t complete it yet 😅. (Sorry the book cover hasn’t been designed)
However, 2015 was scary as well. Just few days after I reached home for summer vacations, there was a massive earthquake recurring for 3 consecutive days, and again after a month, the after shocks still felt. For once, I thought, are we gonna survive this? I’m going back to college to complete my studies? At least I was there with my family at that time. Had I been in college and my family was stuck there, yeah my father would have worried less but I would have been half-dead in fear and concern and anxiety. This happened in the North of India. (Nature’s Conspiracies)
During Autumn, Tamil Nadu, one of the state’s in South India, just a few hundred kilometres from my college town, experienced cyclone for almost a month leading to devastating floods. I didn’t experience it myself but I understand what it is to meet with a natural calamity.
From the dark part of my experiences of the year that just passed, I just wish that such a year never comes back.. Hope the God Almighty will accept my humble request
In these one and a half years in Bangalore I experienced one of the most exotic experiences of my entire life, when I attended the Bangalore literature festival.
I conveniently missed the inauguration. I planned to attend the sessions of my favorite authors.
First I attended the conversation of Devdutt Pattanaik, one of the most renown mythologist of India, with another author Mani Rao. They spoke on Mr. Pattanaik’s latest book “My Gita”. Both the authors have written their own versions of the Bhagawad Gita, and they discussed their point of view on the sacred book. This conversation made me more aware of my religion, my existence. What intrigued me was when Pattanaik said he disgusts the word “argument”, according to him Indian culture is about “Samvada” – discussion, you take information from another person and in turn give information. I never gave a thought about it. So a new realisation dawned in me.
The conversation being on mythology, don’t think it was boring, the man has a good sense of humour. He doesn’t speak of philosophy, so it wasn’t boring, I guess you too would have enjoyed, if you have at least a wee bit of interest in Hindu mythology. Not was the conversation constricted to Gita, Mahabharata was discussed, Ramayana was discussed, one can get a lot of knowledge about the mythology.
Next I attended the session I had been waiting for over a month. Conversation of Durjoy Datta along with Ravindra Singh and Preeti Shenoy with Nandita Bose on “New- Age Romantics”. That’s we all connect to. They spoke of what New-Age Romantics is about, infidelity, polyamory, the institution of marriage, whether technology mingling with romance is a boon or bane.
Ayushmann Khurana gave a Bollywood flavour to the lit fest. He’s worth admiring. He’s an actor, singer, music director, and now he had written a book with his wife about his struggles as an actor. He gave some tips to the aspiring actors and actresses.
There was a separate Q & A session with Durjoy Datta and Ravindra Singh on writing. Even I asked some questions. The session really helped me come out of the confusion I was in regarding my writing journey.
The last session of the festival was a debate on “Are we heading towards an intolerant India?”. The panel included eminent journalists, authors, politicians, entrepreneurs. The debate was a heated one with a great response from the audience. Presence of politicians did make the debate political which at last agitated the audience. The disappointing factor was that, only the past riots that occurred, the flaws of the government was being pointed out on and on. No body spoke about the unnecessary moral policing, or the rigid censoring of films. Only the phrases were mentioned but nobody probed into them.
These were only the ones I attended, there were many other sessions that took place in the Bangalore literature festival. The others didn’t much appeal to me, so I conveniently skipped. But I had my bit of fun.
Yesterday my cousin sisters celebrated their 9th birthday (they are twins, one minute difference). This is the second time I missed their birthday. This time I had to come back for college just one week before their birthday. Wish my holiday could get extended by 7 more days. That’s why felt worse this year.
I had already bought their gifts and left them with my mother. They received it first thing in the morning. As usual they loved it. They always love whatever I give them. Dunno why, they often prefer the ones I already used, especially the older of the twins. Maybe that shows how deep our connection is.
At night I spoke to them over Skype. They saw my face and understood there’s something wrong. They understood I was sad.
The older twin said, “don’t worry, next year if your college starts late, we could celebrate together”. I said, “What if next year also I won’t be able to stay?” You know what she said? She said, “this year I forgot but next year you’ll see us cut the cake over Skype”.
I was surprised by her response. Were they the same kids whom nine years back l used to take in my arms and played for hours together? Were they same kids whom I used to teach how to walk and talk?
I was in a doubt whether angels and fairies exist or not. But now I say, yes they do, and I have two fairies in my life. They are my first cousins by relation, but to me they are no less than siblings. Of all my cousins, they are closest to me. And I guess so am I to them.
It seems they came into my life just yesterday.
Staying with them I learned how to handle kids. I learned to understand them. I learned how to be like them and relive my childhood.
Wish them a happy, fruitful year ahead.
I wish them a healthy mind and body. Hope their all wishes come true.
I would happily take all their grief and give them my happiness.
Yesterday I cried the entire day. Why? I felt alone, lonely, isolated. I felt like leaving the city of Bangalore and going back to Siliguri, my home. My tears wouldn’t stop flowing. Everyone in class were staring at me. Some would ask, ” what happened?” I would say “nothing”. They would turn their faces. Two of my friends from school (who shifted with me to the same college, to the same class) were the first ones who remained adamant and wouldn’t budge until I spoke my heart out. I told them. I felt ignored. I felt everyone dislikes me. I am such a disgusting person that I don’t deserve friends, that’s why people ignore me. They consoled me saying, “If people have problem with you, that’s their problem. You don’t stop being yourself. People avoid you, you avoid them back. You be yourself. Be strong. Be on your own and everyone will come to you. If you run to people, they will move away.”
Later when I spoke to my mother, she told me the same thing and also said, ” Not every friend will be like your school friends, the friends you grew up with. Friends come and go, but childhood friends and the friends you make while you are working always stay. Talk to your school friends and I’m sure you feel much better.” I followed her advice and called up my close friend from school at midnight and spoke for around an hour and a half. After that I had a sound sleep (the first day in the last 3 days that I got a good sleep) so much so I woke up late by an hour and somehow managed to reach college on time.
No one can be like our childhood friends, the friends that we make with our irrational minds but they are the very ones to be by our sides all our lives. These “chuddie buddies” have accepted me when i was angry, they accepted me when I was ecstatic. They accepted me in my greatest of follies and smallest of achievements. We would fight almost every alternate minute but the next moment no body, not even ourselves, would realise that we fought a few seconds back. “Ego”, “Formality”- these words never existed in our dictionaries; which is quite the opposite among friends we make later.
Not only that, our friends’ houses are equivalent to our houses, their mothers are no different from our mothers. In case of my college friends I don’t even know where they live, forget about knowing their families.
Sometimes we friends become mothers to each other, reprimanding whenever they take a wrong step. There can be no better advisers than these friends.
I miss our “PNPCs” so much. And the “All- Siliguri Radios” of our group too, who had all the news around the city, “Which girl is dating which guy?” “Which guy was caught double-timing?” “Which couple has reached the third or fourth base?” and so on and so forth. How much ever “unsophisticated” it may be, we love PNPC-ing.
We friends had one thing in common, love for food and novels. We would buy one novel, get to read 10. And the lunch breaks in school……. whenever we reminisce about it, we are bound to be gripped by nostalgia. Those fights over who gets to eat first, those innocent robbery of lunch boxes, are so rare nowadays……..
Sometimes I wish we would never grow up, then we never have to be separated from one another.
But then we are always together, aren’t we?? Though not physically, but virtually. If not virtually, we at least stay in each others memories…..
Thank you guys for being in my life……
P.S. Sorry Daisy and Ruchika these are the only photos i had of yours. But i love you loads
On the 10th of July, 2015, I went to a book launch. It’s the first time I got an opportunity to attend a book launch event. It was the launch of the most talked about novel “Scion of Ikshvaku” by Amish Tripathi. The book had released on June 22, 2015. Thanks to Amazon.in I got to read the book that very day. I was reading Tripathi’s debut novel “Immortals of Meluha” and the latest one at the same time. I really loved his perspective of the Indian Mythology. I started admiring his writings. So, naturally I was excited about the event. I hurried out of college and reached the event earlier than the mentioned time by half-an-hour. First thing that I really appreciated about Mr. Tripathi was he came almost on time. Most of the questions asked by the audience were quite philosophical, I really appreciated the answers that he gave.
Before starting the discussion he had told, whichever book he writes in the future (his books are till now all based on mythology) will have some clue or the other from his first set of trilogy. In response, some people from the audience (including me) said that they had found the clue in this book. So he said, he would be very happy if anyone would speak to him personally after the discussion was over and tell him the clue. While taking his autograph, I spoke to him about the clue. He was quite delighted and shook my hand. Had my phone’s battery not gone over, i would have got that moment captured. But that didn’t stop from being on cloud 9!!!! He gave some tips for my writing.
December holidays. No tickets. Can’t go home. Holidays gonna be super boring, that’s for sure. Disheartened. All of a sudden I remembered my aunt had once asked me to visit her place in Hyderabad. But……………. there had to be a problem. I can’t go alone. Daddy will never allow that. I had got no other choice but to approach my cousin. Sometimes handling cousins can be so difficult. Neither did she give a green signal nor a red signal. Stuck at yellow. As the days of vacation were approaching, I was getting more and more impatient. At last……………….. came the green signal. Then, off to Hyderabad.
When we reached Hyderabad, it was Christmas eve. The day went by sleeping and lazing around. At midnight we went to St. Mary’s Church, Secunderabad. It was an awesome experience there. It was…………… thrilling, especially eating ice-cream at around 1.30 am when I had already caught a cold 😉 . I never went out at midnight other than Durga Puja and Diwali days. And I always enjoyed spending time with my super awesome aunt who is no less than a friend to me.
Next Day. Christmas. Sudden plan to Golconda Fort. My first experience to a historic site. And I thoroughly enjoyed it. I never enjoyed like this before. Climbing up and down the broken parts of the fort with cousin, aunt and uncle, and clicking “cranky” photos. For a moment it seemed as if we were rock climbing; not visiting an old fort. In short, the trip was phenomenal. The day came to an end with a movie show.
We next went to a park, Lumbini Park. The main attraction happens to be the Hussain Sagar Lake and a small garden sort of a piece of land with a huge statue of Buddha built on the lake. One has to go by mechanized boat to that garden. The place is beautiful. Even the Birla Temple we visited the next day was worth visiting.
Then came the time for me to leave. I didn’t want to. But…………. can’t help.
One thing I noticed. There are too many palatial buildings in this city ;-). Even the railway station looks palatial from outside. Yeah, its different the inside doesn’t look half as palatial 😛 .
Hmmm……….. So…….. My Christmas was not as boring as i expected.
He he just kidding :-D. My Christmas holiday was AWESOME. I am keen to visit Hyderabad again.
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL MY FRIENDS AND FELLOW BLOGGERS !!!!!!!!!!!!!
After about 6-7 months, I went home. I was excited. Firstly, because, obviously I will be seeing my family and friends after a long time; secondly, because, its my first experience of travelling by air. Going to the airport and boarding the flight was so fascinating.
Even after staying away from home, I have been so close to home that nothing has changed. On entering the airport after the flight landed, I saw my parents. Daddy seemed slimmer. Mom, the same. I thought my home town would seem new to me. But everything seemed the same. I found no changes at all. Still I was excited to see my town, my family, my friends and everyone close to me. Just after leaving the airport, daddy to took me to the nearest mall to get me new clothes for the festival (festive enjoyment has begun 🙂 ). Then I went to meet my maternal grandparents. Spent some quality time with them then went off to my paternal aunt’s place to burst crackers ( diwali without crackers is just incomplete for me). At last i entered home only to go out again after dinner. My parents, granny, cousin and I went for “pandal-hopping” at midnight (I missed this thing so much during Durga Puja).
So that was my first day at my home town. Next Day was Bhai Tika. I was given a surprise by my aunt with an arrangement for the ceremony with my little cousin brother ready to be treated like a VIP ( there isn’t a ritual in my family to do this ceremony though we enjoy the holiday that we get, so I wasn’t ready for it). So, unprepared, I completed the ritual. After lunch, I went with my relatives for a long drive Kurseong (its a hill station; my home town Siliguri is on the foothills, so the hills are just few hours away). O God !!!! what roads they were. At some point I felt really scared, they were so narrow and steep !!!! It was late evening when we returned. Tired, I straight away went off to bed and my 2nd day came to an end.
Next day my whole family, we went to another place called Kalimpong. Don’t know about others but I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
This is the detailed account of the first three days of my vacation. The remaining days were spent roaming about the city, meeting old friends, visiting both my schools, shopping, going for movie. Yes, I again had arguments with Dad. Its so envitable 😀 .
The day I was coming back to Bangalore, I did’nt want to leave home. Suddenly I felt a strong affinity towards home. Few months back I was dying to leave, to be on my own. But at that time I wanted to stay back. I felt I should have listened to Daddy and not shifted to Bangalore. Now that I have taken the decision, I have no choice but to wait for another six months…………………..
Its Autumn. Its festive time. Time for fun. But I am not happy. I am far away from family, friends. How can I enjoy the festive season in a completely foreign land ? Foreign not geographically, but linguistically and culturally. Once upon a time, I used to enjoy my festival with full enthusiasm. Terminal exams would be over. School closed. No tutorial class. So no studies. And for me festival means dressing up, roaming about the city, chatting and eating. Now, I am far away from home, exams knocking at the door, no signs of the festive enthusiasm in this alien city. Instead of enjoying, now I am sitting in my new residence, alone, with only two options: either I prepare for exams or I sit quietly, recollect the past and wait for the vacation to approach when I can finally see my family, my friends, my hometown after about five months. Everyone is trying to console me saying “chill”, “relax”, “to get something you need to lose something”, “success comes after sacrifice” etc. But how much ever people say, I need some time to get used to this change. I don’t know how long will it take, hope I can get over it soon. Actually, I never thought I will crave so much to go home. I thought I would get over the change very easily. But I was wrong……… very wrong……
Conversations maybe forgotten……. Memories keep coming back. Whenever I open my laptop, a fresh memory of my past sweeps across my eyes, my mind. Because whenever I open my laptop I get to see my wallpaper, a collage I had made few months back. It has captured all the memories of my school life. School life… The best phase of life. The school building, friends, going school on Saturdays for extra activities, our cat fights, our gossips, every memory flashes before my eyes as soon as I see the collage. 14 years…..So many memories……Sometimes it becomes hard to segregate one event from the other. Looking at the school building, I remember the vague memory of going to school for the first time with my parents for my admission test. I vaguely remember, one of the school staffs came and took all the children away from their parents to the school park. Then I remember our sister Principal ( I was admitted to a convent all-girls school) asking me questions. Then came the first day of my classes. I was waiting with my parents for the school bus. There I saw a cute, fair girl standing quietly clung to her parents’ hands. I remembered meeting her during admission test. Being a talkative, inquisitive kid, I went to her and asked her name. She was so shy that she was reluctant to answer. I, on the other hand, was so irritated at her not “bothering” to answer that I slapped. Yes, I seriously slapped her. In front of both of our parents. From that day on wards, we became closest of friends. The other pictures also have words of their own. Some talk of our fun during extra activities on Saturdays, our crazy hangouts, tuition class enjoyment, our farewell party, our festive madness, our photo-shoots………. Oh!!!! I am going out of words. Too much of flashbacks……. Going dizzy……..
Birthday…… It happens to be the happiest day of every person’s life. For me it used to be the most precious and grandest day of my life. My birthday used to be celebrated like a festival. After all I am the only child of my parents, so obviously my dad will do this for me. I would be so excited that used to start counting days a month in advance. I would go shopping with mom on the eve of my birthday (actually my shopping would begin a fortnight in advance). I would wait till midnight for calls and messages. On the main day, there would be a small party with friends in school. In the evening all my relatives and friends would come up and celebrate my birthday. The whole day would be filled with gifts, chocolates, gossips, music and of course food. Till last year my birthday would be the best day of the year. But now……. Everything has changed. I have shifted to another city. Alone. Leaving behind my family, friends, bringing with me only those memories. This year my birthday didn’t seem like my birthday. For the first time I felt so lonely, so isolated. No mom and granny to cook my favourite dishes. No dad for me to pull his leg for again not uttering the words “Happy Birthday” to me. No friends to party hard with. Suddenly the day turned so weird. Yes, I do have new friends. But those years were different and this year is completely different. I couldn’t let go of the past. I just cried and cried. Mom and granny tried their best to console me. One of my childhood buddies tried to make me laugh and make me feel that everything is normal. Nothing had changed. But…… I couldn’ t see them. I just could hear them over the phone. Then how come nothing has changed ? I consoled myself thinking that after two months i will be visiting them. So what if it’s only for a fortnight.