Monthly Archives: July 2008

>Sunny side up

>

I’m nothing if not an optimist. And even though the grey clouds of pessimism come over me every once in a while, they can’t block my sunshine forever. I am that proverbial sunny day that will dispel your gloom, the silver lining that shines from behind a cloud.

Jottingsnmusings asked me what kind of a day I am like. I am that sunny day when I’ve shooed the clouds away, when I can strut around the blue sky in all my glory, when I know I can make or break your day with too much of me or too little! I am the Sun that can sustain life and yet scorch you with its heat, that will let the barren trees of autumn flower again but will turn the green grass into burnt blades of dead life.

I am that sunny winter afternoon when you can soak in the warmth I exude. Or that hot summer day when you hide away from my glare, can’t look me in the eye because I’m spewing fire.

I’m all of it – the good and the bad, the perfect and the imperfect. I’m that gentle sunny day you wait for after days of fog and chill to melt the ice, that ferocious sunny day you want no more of when the Earth’s parched and waiting for its first shower after days of soaring temperatures.

I am the sunny day when you can imagine the sheep lazily grazing on a lush green mountainside, the sunny day when the beaches are swamped by fun-loving frolickers.

I am the sunny day when the streets wear a deserted look as the hot gusts of wind make them their playground, the sunny day that make deserts out of land.

In a very cliched way, you can love me or you can hate me, but rarely will you be able to ignore me.

What kind of day are you? Tell me.

>Work is warship…

>

…And the soldiers need a break from combat some time. At least in times of peace. Let’s say that soldier is me, been beating the deadlines since the last six years and now super exhausted. Bored would be a better word.

So when I heard yesterday that my much younger friend had taken a second sabbatical from work in the last 3 years and that another friend was contemplating quitting her job the second time in six years, I was tempted – to give up my post at the battle field, put up my legs and say I’ve retired, temporarily at least.

What’s stopping you, people who know I’m self-employed would ask. And I have no answers. There seems to be no reason to be going to work, especially since I seem to be spending most of my working day on Facebook and blogging. And also because I now have enough people in my office taking care of everything that could possibly ask taking care of. My presence in office serves the purpose of ensuring everyone does their work – and they say that’s no mean job either – but it all leaves me unprecedented-ly idle. How do I handle all the free time I suddenly seem to have at hand? My work experience did not prepare me for this. Yet I cannot seem to part from a routine that’s on the verge of becoming monotonous. I cannot give up my financial independence, that feeling of knowing I’ve worked for the pleasures I enjoy (at least some of them).

My work life has been such an integral part of who I am that people scoff at me if I say I want to take a break. I don’t blame them – I just have been so passionate about my work all these years, enjoyed the challenges and enjoyed even more winning them – for not being able to imagine me without my workspace. My family shudders at the idea of having me home full time; they say I would be back to office within a week. The Guy says it’s impossible for me to be a full time home-body. Perhaps they are right: I really have no idea what I would do if I stopped going to work, how I would fill the hours in a day. And perhaps they are wrong: who says I ought to be doing something all the time? What I’m sure of though is that I need something more than others’ expectations of me to keep me going. I need a new challenge or I need a break.

Of course, there’s a lone voice – that of my sister – telling me to understand my true calling. And I haven’t the faintest idea what that could be, how I’m supposed to arrive at it and then pursue it. I haven’t ever taken any calcualted risks in my career, just been spurred ahead by the desire to do something new and exciting, test unchartered territory. And yet, there is this urge to get back to writing professionally. I could and I can’t. Sometimes going back is so much tougher than going forward. How can I reclaim the past that has given me up? How can I find the future that I’m waiting for?

>Five Point Someone

>Here’s the much-circulated tag that has come to me via Det-res. The tag is supposed to be “simple” but trust me, it isn’t. You have to Post 5 links to 5 of your previously written posts, which is far from easy. The posts have to relate to the 5 key words given : family, friend, yourself, your love, anything you like. And then tag 5 other friends to do this meme. Try to tag at least 2 new acquaintances (if not, your current blog buddies will do) so that you get to know them each a little bit better.

So I revisited my posts, looking for stuff I’d written about my family. And I couldn’t come up with something better than the one where I talk about being truly, madly, deeply in love… with my parents. I mean it, even now.

I’ve written very little about my friends and only recently talked about my girl friends – the lovely ladies who’ve made life lovelier for me. And though I’ve written little about the love of my life, I think this one post speaks for a decade of love.

However, there’s been plenty of me in this blog and choosing just one post about myself wasn’t easy. Everything on this blog happens to be about me. I’ve finally chosen a post that sums up me and my life in the past one year. For those who know little about who I am, this post is quite insightful!

And something about anything I like? What better than blogging? Here are 5 reasons why I blog.
So there, I’m done! And now I have to tage 5 more bloggers. The two new acquaintances I tag are: The Indian Homemaker and Monika. Among the older ones, I tag Avaran, Mac and Solitaire.

>Farce

>Let us play that game again –
I’ll be the interviewer and you’ll be the prey.
I will talk to you and you will not hear me,
I will wait but you will not speak.

Let us play that game again –
We’ll call it a conversation this time –
We’ll pretend that we can talk
But you won’t speak and I won’t balk.

Let us play that game again
Because that’s all that we can do.
You don’t have answers for me
And I’ll run out of questions for you.

Let us play that game again
It fills up the silence so well.
The sound of my voice,
It makes me believe we can really talk.

>The Dead End of Life – Part Two

>During the last few funerals that I have attended, I had a million thoughts racing in my head.

As I saw a human being turn into a corpse, I tried to understand what makes us withdraw from the coldness of a dead body. Why does a corpse becomes untouchable even for family and friends? What fear stops you from touching the person you loved after he’s dead?

I wondered at the rituals – their purpose, their need: The elaborate rituals that are rendered meaningless by our ignorance, their impracticality. The rituals that only a son can perform, and the ones that the son refuses to perform. The moral censure, the right, wrong and all that comes between the two.

I looked amusedly at the family congregations at the funerals. Old family acquaintances getting together, catching up with family gossip on the pretext of mourning a death. Blame games – there must be somebody responsible for the sudden death – the doctor, the wife, the children, who? Politics – there must be some way to prove I was closer to that person who died than others present there… There are those who come to oblige you with their presence, those who should have come but do not because they’re too busy, too successful. Where is the serenity that the ocassion demands?

The moving on – how easy and effortless. How apt too.

>The Dead End of Life – Part One

>In the last one month, I’ve seen several lives come to naught. Some expected, others not. I’ve seen a comatose relative finally make peace with life and death after years of drifting in a zone of lifelessness. I’ve seen my father’s aunt pass away in her sleep. I’ve seen 50-year olds bid farewell to a father who had prepared his children for this parting with years of illness. And I’ve seen my 20-something cousins grapple with the sudden, unexpected demise of their father, however superfluous his presence might have been. I’ve seen an 84-year old lady die alone because her successful children were too busy to come back home in time to meet her.

But the show must go on – of living, of making sense of this Life. When you see lives around you ending, there is no alternative but to understand that there are things that you control and there are things your don’t, to know that Death is the great leveller and that no matter what you’ve achieved in your life, in that one moment when you breathe your last, you know you have no right on your own life, have never had, that there’s a power over you that you cannot overrule.

Life goes on – whether you exist or you don’t. It might change, but it never stops. wI hear aging people wonder aloud how their children will manage when they’re dead, it amuses me. No, it bothers me, how they think they run lives around them, that those lives may cease to exist as they do, once they are gone. It doesn’t work that way. “Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap; they have no storeroom nor barn, and yet God feeds them; how much more valuable you are than the birds!”

You may agree with that or you may not, but I’m glad I have the faith that will let me die in peace, even if I do not live with it. And I’m sorry for those people who do not find a release in Death from ties that pull and bind us in this life.