2-1–05

Just found an old diary in my clutter cleaning and found this written on
2.1.05

As I sat down to write the mind went blank . All thoughts which were floating incessantly now ceased to exist. Maybe nothingness is a good place to start from. I had a blank canvass and I can create. What more could I ask for.

The winter sun was warm on my back. The Sunday newspapers strewn all around me. The Christmas decorations now looked a bit faded. This was the new year and with it came new resolutions. The time to review the past had gone. I had to have a new beginning. The Tsunami clippings kept flashing in front of my eyes.

Langkawi- where we went on our honeymoon. Negombo in Sri Lanka where the sea was so close and oh so charming. We had it cause the airline decided to give us a free stopoer.
Goa in the rains, the hotel construction site where I had my brand new job.I loved the smell of the soi,l brick, mortar mixed with the sea and the November rains. The evenings were spent staring at the rain falling in the swimming pool, sea roaring at a distance and me thinking about the baby to come.
Where Langkawi was long and languorous, Phuket was exciting and fun. We were a family now. The little one loved the sea and the pool. She had picked up a few thai words and had started calling me Yai- for mom in the local language. She was soaking it all. The morning dip in the sea , one saw a lot of Indians coming from a cruise. The cruise gave them six hours in this paradise. With their new clothes, new cameras and new shoes from Mustafa in Singapore, They would only be on the sand clicking pictures for posterity. I felt a bit conscious in my bikini. They felt Indians because I was abroad. In India , we were different states, communities, caste languages. The Thai lady fully covered to prevent herself from the harsh tropical sun came to sell colorful sarongs. I had promised a friend I would get her one. Indianness not forgotten, I got down to bargaining. That is what we are good at aren’ t we?

We reached Mahabalipuram in the pitch of the night. The sea was calm as we rushed to our cottage. Morning was a surprise. The bright blue sea was at my door step.
Driving along the east coast road to Pondicherry and thinking of living in one of the fishing hamlets. MY Dad s uncle had moved from London to Pondicherry. We were paying him a visit. We had to rush back to Chennai to catch a flight. The city has a different charm so unlike apna Bombay, though both are located by the sea.

Self and a colleague were on work in Trivandrum. We had taken a half day off to visit KanyaKumari and Kovalum. Walking on the beach barefoot with our business suits and asking for breakfast in a small hut. It was low season and I know what the world was missing out on.After darshan at kanyakumari we had eaten sumptuous pav bhaji with Priti Zinta and Salman khan staring at us from the wall posters. How Bombay and bollywood had traveled all the way. We reached a temple just as dusk was setting in. Lights went out. The oil diyas guided us thru this century old miracle where all the pillars emanated sounds of various musical instruments. I remember calling husband from there. I felt so close to God.

And now all that had gone, bruised, battered lives lost and devastation all around. And what had I done when the nature was at its furious best, I got myself glued to watch more tv. For God s sake I am alive, But worse than the dead. Thought of the few old clothes. I wanted to give away as they were occupying too much space in my cupboard.. Ya may be some food grains. Then which NGO was good and where should I donate so that it reaches faster. The USA? oh they will spend on war not on aid.
I thought of all these beautiful moments in all these beautiful places. Each image is so distinct and the memory so vivid. And then on boxing day, the tsunami took it all away.

The shrill ring of the phone pierced my thoughts. The husband called to say he had sent money for relief. A small smile appeared on my face. He always said it with actions. I am lucky.

It was that moment the decision was made. I was going back to holiday in all these places cause. I believe in the people I know new things will come up. I know we will leave past behind and embrace a new future. Welcome us please, Dear Happy New Year.

My alteration Darji

I go to a small hole in the wall kind of a shop for all my alteration work. Two tailors sit on their sewing machines opposite each other in a small shop. They dont do any ladies alterations as they stitch men s clothes. All the vegetable vendors, delivery boys, office peons, sales boys from small shops, my roadside chai wala etc are his clients. He said if he does ladies clothes alteration then he will loose his business.So I pass off all my jeans as men s. Earlier I used to give clothes to which ever tailor was free. One day the other guy said we have a family and things to do for family. Clothes can wait. So I have stopped giving clothes to him. I now give clothes to the nice man who is prompt in his work and polite too.

Today my alteration tailor is sad. He had lost his Mom four days back.He lived with his parents. He is more than forty five years old and the world sure has not pampered him. He has not been married ever. Has not found a match.His Mom wanted him to be happily married but that did not happen when she was alive. He has four brothers, two are married. The eldest one decided not to get married. Tailor is the third one and could not get a suitable spouse. He said people were showing very sad girls for him and now he is left out. All have families children wives.He has to take care of his father. The guy who sits opposite him on the sewing machine is his real brother.He was really lamenting the loss of his mother. She passed away peacefully. Had dinner and sang some bhajans and left for heavenly abode in her sleep. I share his sadness with him today. May God give him love.

Bandra Worli Sea Link

Monsoons have arrived in Mumbai. Sealink has opened in Mumbai.I have yet to drives past it but one thing for sure this will ease up the traffic near my house on the main road. Will make reaching suburbs easier for my children s school and classes. My cab driver had already been on it with his family. Said the toll is worth it coz you save two litres petrol and i calculated 26 signals from Bandra east to Worli. We did see the laser show on the sea link and that was beautiful despite the clouded skies. The cabbie was very happy with progress . He said more things like this should happen in Mumbai then people will be calm as no traffic on the roads. He said to send her to USA as she doesn t want the flyover which will further improve the sealink. He said humare paas unki cassette hai aur hum wohi sun lenge. Koi free mein toh gaaya nahin tha usne. He didnt take her name. Cho Chweet na?
Rain no rain I expect all maids to come to work. They are the ones whose houses get flooded, gutters outside their hutments overflows and the electricity is cut off. I still have no sympathy for that. I am just concerned about my life which should be going smoothly no matter what. That happenned even the day terror attacks happened, train blasts happened or 26th july rains happenned. Is it wrong to be selfish? Hicks says first you have to be selfish enough to love yourself then you can love others. If you are well, it does not mean you have snatched someone of their good health. Be happy. It is my first and foremost commitment to life and myself.
Happiness will remove all road blocks/ signals and help you reach your destination faster. Just like the Bandra worli sea link

Soul Curry

I am barely getting a hang of facebook and there is Twitter to master. New technologies, new innovations . What about new us? All companies are doing innovations on their products creating new products, improvising existing products making them more user friendly or more updated. What am I doing for myself?
Wohi hi ghisa pita pe naye kapde daalo. No technology, no innovations for our own selves.
I want to buy new cell phones when they are launched. Have I ever thought how much I ll love myself if I bring in something new in my life. Some newer version, more user friendly, more open, more loving? Wont people want me more? Wont they feel more comfortable around me and more welcoming within me? Sorry this was about me and not about people . Dont I want to better myself for my loved ones? I know they love me for who I am but can I give them more for their love because I love them?
Do I have the drive to be a better mom, better wife, better child or better friend everyday? Do I want to provide a little more everyday? I love myself, hai na? So how about giving more of myself to the world everyday.