Saturday, April 19, 2008

In the middle of the road

We were headed to dinner. The restaurant was on the opposite side of the road. The divider was low on our side of the road, and high on the opposite side of the road; a four feet jump from the divider onto the road. We crossed the road on our side, where the divider was one step above the ground. But when we got to the middle, there were too many vehicles coming from the opposite side. The distance between the ground and the road was too great for us to jump an run across the road fast enough to avoid being run over. So we decided to just sit there in the middle of the road, in the grass growing on the divider, and wait for the traffic to pass. There we sat, for fifteen minutes, with the lights blurred on either side of us, cross-legged, laughing for no particular reason. When the traffic died away, we jumped off and crossed the road, laughing all the way up to the restaurant. It would have made a superb photograph, had someone captured us in an aerial view.

Thursday, April 17, 2008


I knew as soon as I entered the place. I am a village girl at heart. The wonderful smell of fresh cowdung, covering the floors outside every house, like a rough carpet, cool to the soles of the feet. People whose language I knew as my own. Bullock carts on narrow roads. Trees.

Where we stayed, the back was just fields, and you had to pass the buffaloes to get to the edge of the fields. I spoke to the buffaloes. They seemed happy. Five of them, two being calves.

I went past the haystack and found myself a comfortable spot on a rock just beneath a lean tree. And I sat there, my eyes closed, facing the green that was unlike any other green I had seen before. I shut my eyes and sat, feeling the warmth of the sun on my face, hearing the sounds of the birds that the wind gently brought to my ears. My skin felt like it was glowing. It was the best time I have spent with myself.

We went to the ruins. The old temples, the old buildings. Took countless pictures. But despite all the laughter that was floating around the group, I felt separate from the rest. The old buildings drew me to them, beckoning. See what so many in the past have seen, they said. The stones, rough to my touch. I could feel how intricate the carvings were beneath my light fingertips.
I could imagine, how centuries ago, people would have sat, laughed, touched, and built these. In my mind, the picture transformed, and I saw how they would have been when they were the present, when they knew the people who had built them, in their days of glory, when people were not coming to look at them, but lived them. I could have spent hours, just looking, just touching, just smelling, just imagining. I could have lived those lives, I thought. I wish I had lived those buildings in all their grandeur. I wish their beauty was a part of me, and I was a part of their time. All I can do now is imagine and marvel. I could spend hours, no days, just being there, with the knowledge that this piece of stone has seen so many like me, seen so many lifetimes flit past... so many, that the decades and centuries may have been only seconds.

I cannot begin to describe just how relaxing the trip was. I did not want to leave. I wanted to live in the fields, watching the sunrise, drinking in the fresh air, smelling the cowdung and hearing the birds be their carefree selves. I want to really live where there is life, both old and new. The combination of the fresh and young with the wise and crumbling. Hampi is beautiful.


I love hearing the leaves crunch under my feet. And the birds and the crickets. And the shying away of the touch-me-not when I gently run my toes over them.

Look there. Look how the sun is changing the green colour of the hills. Atop the hill, 360 steps above the temple. Windmills border the scene, in wave pattern of the hills. A stretch of various shades of green - a brown road down there, tree tops like sponges dipped in green dye. Uneven terrain, touching the cloudy sky. A drop falls. A rooftop or two trying desperately to be visible among the lush greenery. Its like a painting. Dark on one side and light on the other. Shades of green.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Fade Away

He's talking to me from across the table. I can hear his voice, see his hands move describingly as he speaks, and I nod to make sure he knows I'm listening.
And slowly, his voice gets softer and softer and softer. I can still see his hands moving, his mouth opening and changing shapes as he intonates, his eyes pointing in my direction. I hear a buzzing sound coming from the back of my head. My vision blurs, and he turns into fragments of floating colour. And as I strain my eyes to focus on him again, I see instead, the face of that boy I loved. I hear his voice. The buzzing is louder, enough to block the other guy, but through it I can still hear him.

Fade away honey. I'm trying to listen to somebody else.

I'm dancing because I love to. My favourite song is playing. I can feel his breath on the back of my neck...
But I'm dancing alone.

Fade away honey. We've had our last dance.

I lie on my side, alone, trying hard to sleep. I cannot, I cannot. I feel the weight of his hand around my waist, fingers loosely entwined in mine. I can feel his lips grazing the back of my neck.

Fade away honey. I need to be able to sleep.

The breeze caresses my face, as we sit, drenched, soon after the rain. I can feel his hand on my lap, wet and heavy. The tea we're sipping slips, warm, down our throats. We remember the ice, and smile. I'm sitting by myself.

Fade away honey. I need to enjoy the rain and tea alone.

I walk on the dark street, my hands deep in my jacket pocket, listening to the sound of my shoes on the ground, watching the road disappear from beneath. It drizzles. I look up and smile at the wind. And the drops fall lightly, clearing up my mind with the smell of the rain. I walk, away from how I was, away from how you were. I walk towards a new beginning. I walk towards bliss.

Fade away honey. 'Cause I need you no more.

First Times

~ I saw a woman in a saree in the road, late at night, smoking a cigarette secretly!

~ Cute guy in the bus whose name I found out.

~ Karaoke in a public setting.

~ Partied all night while pub and restaurant hopping.

~ Slow danced with a boy

~ Had a B-52 and Kamikaze

~ Went para sailing

~ A proper Goa vacation on my money, without family.


I've been playing basketball since I was in the 7th grade. It's been nearly a decade since I was first introduced to the sport. And it would take more than words to explain how much I love the game. To be able to feel your blood pumping up and down your entire body, throbbing with adrenalin, and being able to feel the trace of a drop of sweat down the side of your face. And during a game, being able to hear the wind and the cheers rushing past your hot ears. How the wind hitting your face feels cool against the high temperature of your body. Feeling the heat almost vaporise and form a blanket around you when you stop, trying to breathe.

I can vouch for the fact that one of the best things invented by man is a team sport. Besides keeping you fit, it teaches you how to handle yourself in a team, it teaches you how to handle yourself in a team, it teaches you discipline, it teaches you how to be a gracious loser. In those forty minutes on the court, you can almost see a summary of life. You feel thrilled, pumped and happy, at the same time tense and worried, and at once powerful and confident. Looking at your opponent, your senses are tuned and your ears perked in anticipation of the next move that he/she might make. You judge a person's body language and make calculations using your spatial ability almost instantly. And when you're going for the shot knowing that you're going to convert, you're lifted by a confidence that you can't feel any other way, and as you take those last two steps to the jump and the shot, time slows down, and you can't see or hear anything else. And then you land to roars and shouts because the ball went through the ring in one beautiful swish.

Prayer of Pain

I can hear it, screaming, the voice. Praying, over a loudspeaker. I learnt what he put himself through that day. Physical pain. The voices are coming from every direction, haunting. The voices are mourning. It's a little disturbing. I... my heart goes out to him, but I can't say anything. It would be the worst thing... it would be too offensive. The voices gave me goosebumps.

And then I heard a beautiful voice... Josh Groban's voice and it soothed my mind... His deep voice, and his fingers on the piano. It was relaxing. And I want to be on Abbey Road.
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