Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Waiting for the moon

Festivals mean great food… and pure indulgence. Except Karva Chauth. Of course, I was all excited about my first Karva Chauth. A chance to get all dressed up and being the centre of attention. And it’s not just me. All women love dressing up… even if they are headed for Lajpat Nagar for mehendi on their hands.

The night before Karva, I thought to myself, “I’m going to put so much effort into this day. Starving myself, staying thirsty all day long for the long life and happiness of my husband.” My feministic side reared its head and whispered, “Ask him to fast with you.” I did ask. His reply?
“Hmmmmm. Main soch raha hun,” …..long pause…… “ki main kal se kam khana khao. I’ve been eating too much.”

Now I think it was quite funny. But at that time, I just rolled my eyes and slept off.

Anyway, my first Karva started with some heavy-duty food at 4… in the morning. At such an ungodly hour, I was standing in the kitchen trying to stuff myself for the day. The quiet and the dark spooked me. I kept turning around to catch a ghost behind me. So I kept whispering a prayer lest I get possessed or something

When the lovely breakfast was done, I went to bed, only to find that sleep has deserted me! All I did was toss and turn, drink water, think about what clothes to wear tomorrow, matching jewellery, sandals, bindi…..

I dozed off.

Morning came with a parched throat and a grumpy stomach. It definitely was a test of will. I couldn’t stop thinking of water all day long. How it’ll feel running down in my throat. Thankfully, evening arrived, with me getting ready for the katha. Dressed in a jazzy pink and blue sari and my heaviest jewellery (how vain we women are), I sat for puja. Of course, I was the only one who was ignorant about the karva chauth story. So it was all very novel to me.

Then, it was time to wait. The Moon was acting pricey, taking its own sweet time to show up.
8 pm… 8: 30 pm… 8:45 pm… the moon peeped from the behind the trees and my husband walked in from work. How lovely, I thought, both the moon and husband arrived at the same time. Then I quickly performed all rituals including touching my husband’s feet. Of course, I didn’t let any camera capture the “feet touching” act itself.

Now, that the fast was over. It was time for indulgence. And let me tell you, water never tasted as sweet and wonderful before. And as far as food was concerned, it was hogging redefined.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

#Joy vs #happiness

We keep looking for happiness.
Thinking it’s not to be found in less.
We look for it everywhere.
Hoping we’ll chance upon it somewhere.
Maybe in a shopping mall or a restaurant.
In a cinema hall or a new car.
But when we have it all.
Happiness is still far beyond.

Then grief and sadness come along.
Making life a sad, lonely song.
So you cry and crib for the happiness you never found.
Instead grief is what lurks all around.
Just let the sadness take its time.
Let the grief play with you for a while.
Because when they are gone.
You’ll know happiness is not what you want.
It was joy you had been looking for.
And it will come… as a titanic wave,
and overwhelm you in its embrace.
Telling you, it never left your side.
You were busy looking for happiness – unfaithful and over-priced.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Come back for a wee

We were a menace in those times.
8-year-old kids who didn’t care a dime.
We plucked everything we saw,
from roses to guavas and mangoes still raw.
We were living our childhood to the tee,
now we wish it’ll come back for a wee.

We were the egocentric brats who wanted everything.
We cried and howled until our parents gave in.
The chocolates, the ice-creams and everything was free.
Now we just wonder how many calories it would mean.
We were living our childhood to the tee,
now we wish it’ll come back for a wee.

We were the Cinderella, the Spiderman and the queen.
The world was a playground to live out our dreams.
We didn’t know that real world could be so harsh,
we never knew that fairy tales are a farce.
We were living our childhood to the tee,
now we wish it’ll come back for a wee.

But sometimes I see,
It’s in the twinkle of a star.
Sometimes I feel,
It’s in the wind that blows carefree.
Sometimes I think,
It’s just sleeping inside me.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

#Unconditional #Love
She stayed awake all night,
my incessant howling wasn’t the cause.
It was my discomfort that stole her peace.
‘She’ is my lovely ma.
‘She’ is unconditional love.

He listened to my harsh words in silence.
The next morn he flashed me a smile,
as if I had been the sweetest child around.
‘He’ is my resilient pa.
‘He’ is unconditional love.

She laughs when I’m happy
She cries when I’m sad
She hates those I dislike and loves all I like
‘She’ is my sweet, little sis.
‘She’ is unconditional love.

I’m the most beautiful woman around,
when he looks at me with those big, green eyes,
even when I’m sporting a moustache.
‘He’ is my handsome hubby.
‘He’ is unconditional love.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

The #veil

Today morning, as I was headed for work, I saw a little girl on a scooter, sitting between her mother and father. The mother was in a #‘Burkha’ and the girl was too young to wear one. And I couldn’t stop thinking about this girl’s fate, and felt anger and contempt for the people who suppress #women in the name of religion. So, I decided to pen down my anger.

Didn’t #God make the air
so I could feel it swirl through my hair?
Didn’t God send the rain
so I could wash away my pain?
Didn’t God create the sun
so I could smile up at it and say life is fun?
Or, did God make all this for my father
and forgot all about his daughter?

Didn’t God make the hills
so I could climb them for a thrill?
Didn’t God create the seas
so I could swim as long as I please?
Didn’t God plant the trees
so I could climb them with glee?
Or, did God grant all this freedom to my brother
and forgot all about his sister?

Didn’t God give me the brains
so I could be someone, someday?
Didn’t God grant me a voice
so I could stand up for my choice?
Didn’t God gift me a heart
so I could desire, wish and want?
Or, did God gave it all to my husband
and forgot all about his wife?

God knows how I long to soak in the sunlight,
to dance in the rain and delight,
to become what I always dreamed of,
to take on every challenge that life brings on.
God knows how I long for the day,
when I can throw these chains away.
God knows how I long for the day,
when I can throw my veil away.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

My #parallel #universe
#Richard Bach said that every life has many parallel universes. I wonder what I’m doing in my parallel universe right now.

Am I also writing on this page
or am I on a totally different scale?
Am I Cinderella living amongst evil
or am I Medusa who is an epitome of evil?
Am I even a Homosapien
or am I a horrid looking alien?
Am I popular and smart-mouthed
or am I someone who no one cares about?
Am I a girl all sweet and coy
or am I a mean, shameless boy?
Am I living an illusion
Or am I a soul who’s found illumination?
Can anyone tell me when
these questions will end?

Have I grown up to be a musician
or am I still a kid playing a physician?
Have I found the love of my life
or am I a non-believer who’ll stay single all her life?
Have I visited the prison twice or thrice
or am I Miss Goody-two-shoes never been fined?
Have I traveled the world
or have I already discovered the universe?
Have I driven a Ferrari yet
or have I not learned to drive yet?
Have I understood the reason of my existence
or am I still living without a stance?
Have I found satisfaction in life
or am I still looking for more out of life?
Can anyone tell me when
these questions will end?

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

‘The #Da Vinci Code’ Furor

I am a big movie buff. When I read The Da Vinci Code, I was absolutely fascinated. And when I heard they are making a movie on it, I knew I had to watch it. I am not a Christian. By religion, I am a Hindu, not a staunch one though. My theory is, ‘There is God for sure”. That’s it. Religion is not my forte really. But, I love reading about controversial points of view (religious or non-religious). For the simple fact that they broaden one’s thinking. There is another possibility out there, no matter how notorious or incredible.

Well, getting back to the issue. I’ve been looking forward to watching The Da Vinci Code. I’ve been nagging my husband crazy, “Let’s go book the tickets beforehand. I want to watch the movie on the first day”. Well, today morning I woke up to find out, to my disappointment and disdain, that the Christian community in Goa is demanding an all-India ban of the movie!! They say it’s an insult to their religion. It’s a threat to Christianity. I can only say one thing …It’s just a movie for God’s sake! And if I remember correctly, you’ll find Dan Brown’s ‘The Da Vinci Code’ only in the fiction section of all bookstores in all countries. It’s just an expression of thought, probabilities and open mindedness. It's not fact. Atleast, not yet.

Let the movie be screened. If you don’t want to, don’t watch it. Advise your Christian fellowmen to stay away from the cinema halls. If somebody you know still wants to see it? Hey! It’s a democratic country. If you can’t entertain the idea that maybe Jesus Christ was married to Mary Magdalene and that his bloodline still exists. Fine, don’t give any credit to the thought. But for god’s sake, don’t assume that everyone else is equally close- minded.

A new thought occurred to me just now. Even if, Jesus Christ was married to Miss Magdalene and had children, does it change the fact that he performed miracles and that he left the world with many beautiful ideas, the 10 commandments and abundant hope?
Sure, many priests and monks will find themselves confused and troubled if Dan Brown’s theory was proven correct. But that’s not the end of Christianity, is it? Christ will still be worshiped and remembered in history as the one who brought God’s words to mankind. So what if he got married and had children?

Of course, there are other political reasons, I might add, to this furor. The ‘Vatican’ (see ‘political’) reasons I mean. But, I am talking to the Christians who just care about their faith in Christ. I don’t think a fictitious movie can shake the faith of millions across the world. Anyway, most people have read the book or are aware of the theory already. What more difference will a movie make? Let it release in peace.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Think before you speak
"Life is like a powerful, spoilt brat who loves challenges. You throw a strong statement its way and it will take it upon itself to prove you wrong. Thank God it has a sense of humour. "

“There’s no way in the world I am going to a b-grade all girl’s college!” That was the ‘iron-clad’ statement I made to my parents when I was 17 years old. I was confident I’ll make it to one of the ‘cool’ co-ed colleges in the DU north campus. I hardly had a great percentage but I was oozing with groundless confidence. Or maybe it was denial.

Well, what I didn’t know was that life was carefully listening to me with a raised eyebrow and folded arms. I imagine it mockingly said something like, “You wanna bet.” (((sigh))) And as life would have it, I did go to the same ‘b-grade all girl’s’ college for three years.

Rewind to my 10th grade. I finally graduated to Mills and Boon. As I chatted with my girlfriends in our free class, I pointed towards the M&B I’d just finished, and said, “There’s no way I’ll ever fall for an arrogant, prejudiced man. And Love-at-first-sight! It’s an absurd idea, there’s no such thing.” There wasn’t, until 5 years later, I did fall in love, at first sight, with an infuriatingly arrogant and prejudiced guy. I bet life was rolling over with laughter and amusement. I could almost hear it saying, “Anymore no-ways?”

Let’s fast forward to the present. My dear husband (the same arrogant, prejudiced guy) says to me. “Sweetheart, we ought to have at least 3-4 kids.” Without thinking, I blurted out,” Babe, there’s no way we’re having more than 2 kids.”

Damn! (I hope no one was listening).

Friday, May 05, 2006

The mother of all #memoriesI was troubled, confused and agitated, with the sudden, unnecessary deprivation I was facing. She was craving for oxygen. So was I.

The nurses were gossiping in a corner about their boyfriends and mothers-in-law. The doctors were lounging in their cabins since I didn’t see any. The visitors were cussing about the odour of disinfectant. And pregnant women were getting hyper with false labour.

Meanwhile she sank into oblivion. Oh, by the way ‘She’ is my mom. Sorry I forgot to mention. It’s the lack of oxygen I guess.

So, we were both basically about to retire for our heavenly abode – me, an unborn baby, and my mom in her early twenties. Maybe I am being presumptuous about me heading for the heavens – but, excuse me, I had not had the opportunity to sin as yet, had I?

Anyway, just as we were knocking on heaven’s door, the doctor walked in with the nurses, just like in the movies. The last action hero, reprimanding the vamps about their sins (gossiping in this case). And just as I was about to bid farewell to this unknown world, I suddenly found myself crying and howling, troubled by all the confusion whether I was to go or stay. And as if all this wasn’t enough, all these insensitive people round me started staring at me with wide, shocked eyes.

You see, my head has taken a strange shape that vaguely resembled an amoeba, that too a disfigured one.
Remember the oxygen shortage? And whose fault was that? I wasn’t offended for nothing. Stupid gossiping cost me such me embarrassment on my first show. My mum still cribs, “You were the most difficult delivery I had!” I can’t even complain. What can I say- “I want to sue so-and-so because they unceremoniously delivered me into this world, otherwise I would have been sailing on a cute puffy cloud with a little halo around my head, playing a little harp”?

But, despite all my cribbing, I am glad the doctor turned up in time. I had a leg to shake, sing until I am told to shut up, make mud castles, steal roses from my neighbours, devour lots of #chocolates, do a two plus two equals five, bully my little #siblings, help my dirty sister out of a sewage drain, drool over a red Ferrari, bend and break some rules, be mean to some sly, sugar-coated people, discover my wanderlust, fall in #love and blah, blah, blah.