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The feeling, that very soon I am gonna finally fulfill my long awaited desire. That next time, when I come across this title, I will be able to raise my hand and dig into my memory of today.
I finally have a copy of Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie!
Am gonna read it. It’s stupid. I have a crush on a few titles. This is one of them.
In fact, I had to bribe my dear friend/hoarder-of-books/voracious-reader/sorry-cant-part-with-my-book with another of my favorite-yet-unfinished crush of mine. I will give you my “An Era in Darkness..” in exchange for Midnight Children? She paused just for a sec before saying yes. She has her crushes too 😉 I was feeling devilish exploiting her, but heart pounding for Midnight Children!
Some titles are the legend. The authors are the greatest artist in the world. They have created a masterpiece that will live in the memory of millions of peoples, that will outlive them and their readers. That will inspire millions of minds. Will make a person completely stranger to the author smile, or cry or just connect in the deepest level of the heart without even knowing of the existence. That is the power the authors have. The magician of words, the creators of history.
So then, How can I not have a crush?
I have to admit. I just don’t go out and buy all my favorites. They come to me. Each one is an episode. Like it is a conspiracy to slowly unravel to me instead of just heading to my bookshelf.
Here is the conspiracy.
Gone with the Wind – From a college friend, who just wanted to offload book. Was at awe at the courage of Scarlet-O-Hara then and even today.
The Kite Runner – I don’t possess a copy. I got it from my colleague. I loved Afganistan and I could see a boy running under a blue sky covered with colorful paper wings even thinking about it.
The God of Small Thing– Has its own post 🙂
The Tattooist of Auschwitz – Story of Love in the most difficult of time.
On a side note- Why couldn’t I finish “An Era in Darkness…”? because two chapters into the book, I couldn’t look at anything British..ily without resenting them. I just hated them. Plain Hate. And I wasn’t feeling good about the hate. And I know, I love Hugh Grant and Harry Potter! So, it was a tussle and the best thing to do at the time was to abandon the book and pick it up after I could stabilize the raging hormones within me.
So, what am I doing here instead of delving into the story of children born on the stroke of midnight of 15th Aug, 1947?
Am just sitting and admiring the book. Literally. Am just happy that I can start reading it. I have it. The words, the story will come alive soon and I will die knowing I have read a masterpiece, that one day my son, his child and generation of Sayed clan to come have a chance to read this masterpiece and at that moment will be connected to my soul.
Too much? I should just stop now..Am having goosebumps!
Now, tell me about your crush ❤
This post is gonna be really really cheesy. The sort that I don’t do often. In fact, I may never hit Publish.
But Since you are reading this and you are not me, so I must have hit “Publish”.
Lame, I know 😉
So, what makes this cheesy? Am gonna talk about Love, the goody-cuddly love and it is gonna sound like the love declarations from FB feed that I find so cheesy! I mean, You love your husband, tell him, don’t declare to whole wide FB world.
So this is how it goes.
Today ( This post is way too late, but let’s assume today is the day when) marks the 11th year of us being married. And we decided to lunch together since I couldn’t take time off office. We aren’t a couple to go out often. So going out is special. Luckily, I have switched job to a place very near to his office. So meeting for lunchtime was easy.
Now, this is important- I switched job recently, as recent as a month. and am adjusting to the new place. It is not a struggle, but living in past is my struggle.
It doesn’t help, that sometimes I miss my old colleagues. Life was much simpler and somehow happy. Life here is fantastic, but let’s say isn’t simple. You know the feeling when you are among loads of people, yet feel lonely sometimes even though you are so chatty in the head?
Like everything is just noise and you can hear the voice inside and outside your head. Or actually no voice, coz you are just bored and don’t want to think or listen.
I have this feeling during lunch time.
Of course, today wasn’t gonna be any different.
But hey it is different! I was going out with hubby.
We decided on a fancy restaurant just two blocks from my office. As I left office and walked toward the venue, I noticed everything is so much better here than the previous job-… the work, the garden, the office. Everything here is perfect.. but not familiar, not mine. It isn’t known. And with that feeling, I was spiraling down into the same silence 😦
And then I saw him, not where I expected. He had walked a couple of blocks more to reach me. To walk a distance little with me. In the mid of all unknown, I saw him with a cheesy smile.
And I was in love again. In a heartbeat. ♥ With him of course 😀
The feeling of familiarity was back. Am home and I can drop my shield and feel what I wanna feel. I could tell him what I miss. It felt good to be me, no pretentious.
We walked hand-in-hand like lovers, like first-timers who cant get hands off each other Awwww. lovely- cuddly told you 😉
And I enjoyed it, I enjoyed the comfort. He doesn’t even have to listen to me. It is just his presence that is a comfort. And tells me that I will go past this feeling, this chatty head.
I guess I really needed to see him.
And now to the blogosphere, perhaps to FB world too, Am gonna profess my love for my really really lazy-weekend-only-on-sofa husband of 11 years! Am glad you are here with me.
So this is really cheesy? Isn’t it?
I mean, what the hell – You love your husband, go tell him not write a post on blog 😉 next you will be sharing it on FB !
PS: The image is from our wedding, 11 years ago. Since then together we must have gained 200 Kgs. Isn’t that a #relationshipgoal!
Me: Adi, Don’t talk on the table. Nadi ho jao (Quite like a river)
He is my insane little chatterer and sometimes I wanna cap it! Just shut up boy!
Adi : Okay.
Quack, Quack, Quack, Quack!
Me: What now?
Adi : Mummy river has ducks!
And I give up!
since I posted anything to this blog. Not even a pic? I took loads with the comment “Aah need it for my blog”.
Apologies for my long absence to my non-existence fans 😉
Who am I kidding? Probably no one is looking to see a notification from Hira. Meh!
PS: Am fishing for some Missed you sort of comments, welcome back is also fine. Or just Hi!
PS: WordPress updated editor during my absence. Where is my strike-through gone? Why do I have a feeling am not gonna like what wordpress has done?
So the reason for me being missing in action is LIFE.
I was away for a while, gone home aka Assam, remember the most amazing place on earth , doing NOTHING. Two blissful weeks on vacation.Among near and dear ones. And then I was back to the city which is my nest now. And then I quit my job aka my job of 10 years to join another job that is almost a lifestyle change for me. I was out of my comfort zone.
There were too many changes in my life, all taken at the same time. Actually just three. Or two, if you don’t count the change in weather. (PS: Winter is here and I love it)
Am still adjusting to the new job, so far it is good. I have so much to learn aka read, am short of hours in a day to read. Am adjusting to the change in schedule. Am reading all the time. Technical, not legendary stories and that explains my absence from this space.
But today, I wanna take you back to the morning of October, when I woke up to the sounds of birds, clear blue sky outside my window and the sight of green! Assam in October is amazing. The paddy is everywhere, getting ready for harvesting, presenting a landscape of green and plenty of shades of it. The sunshine is just of the right dosage. Not too strong to burn neither too soft to give a chill. It is magical. Yup…Aaah I wish I was there at this hour. Or every hour for the rest of my life.
So, I woke up and decided for a morning walk. The paddy was inviting. The village had a new road, thanks to the govt. The road was from the corner of my house. It bends into the village, even further into the green.
And then that is what am talking about
And then I met Turbo. If you have a child, who is into animation movies, you will know what am talking about. I touched the thing, it was slimy.
And the road is lined with these.
And that is why it is called Amazing Awesome Assam 🙂
And it’s too late here. Past midnight and tomorrow begin a new week. Monday Puff!
Good night, Sleep tight and Have a fun Sunday .
…from getting into a really (emphasis this) really weird situation. A situation where I didn’t know how I got into. No clue. Never happened before. Not in my living adult memory.
So, here is what happened.
Just like any other usual morning, I took my gamsa/towel and headed for the bath. I sat down for free-the-morning-poo activity and (very slowly I) looked at my hands.
And then I realised.
I realised that I have nothing in my hand, My hands are EMPTY. Not carrying a thing. As in no book, no newspaper or no mobile. So, What am I gonna read? All I could do now is just poo.
Pooing, an activity in which the food that I consumed yesterday, after passing through a myriad of churning, grinding, soaking, broken down, beaten will come out of me telling me (1) Human being is an open system- Bad Design. (2) I eat a lot. (3) I poo a lot.
I have never been in such a situation. I always have something to read. A book, or mobile to browse or the newspaper to look. I have to read before bath, before poo. It is important because free-the-poo activity is free because of reading. No reading could translate to no-pooing and that, I was about to find out.
Slowly, My head was registering the pain of empty hands, I could feel a growing lump in my throat, my heart beating like that of an infant. And angry voices inside my head yelling I was heading to a brainless activity of pooing.
I looked around my bathroom, It looked neat with the wall half-covered by the mirror. I have two baskets full of toiletries. And I could spot two toy-cars and one superman in one of these. Okay, For a home of a 6-year-old boy, that finding isn’t a surprise.
Before my lub-dub heart could burst out of the cage, I had to take control. Improvise. Think. What do I need….?. I need words. I grabbed the first thing that had it…. and here is what I discovered in the next few minutes reading bottles- My Shampoo has tree-tea-oil, the scrub has walnut and almond(why are we not eating this stuff ?), the face-wash has neem and the Colgate is recommended by most of the dentist in the world!
My head was trying to locate my mobile, or thinking hard where I left the book that I was reading (Devlok with Devdutt Patnaik- Avoid it, probably that is why head cannot locate it ) or where did I leave newspaper after picking up from the door.
All in the living room.
I could hear chit-chatting of humans breakfasting. Shit, now I can’t even call hubby to rescue. He is at the table with the guests.
This was turning into a full-blown crisis situation.
Well, for the readers, it may sound like a crazy woman speaking. What big deal, just do the thing, shower and move on. It is usual.
But I have never done it before. Not in my grown-up memory. I refuse to follow the social decorum which is.. just poo and move on. Do the thing. Do your thing.
I need to poo like how my son needs to eat. The skill is not to let the boy know that he is eating, and he will do exactly that without a fuss. But the moment his brain realises that his next half an hour of life is gonna be invested in eating, an activity he sees no point in doing, it turns into a rock. Solid and stubborn. No eating. I have better things to do , Like playing with the superhero. But do the same WITHOUT letting him know(distract him with superhero tales) and he will just finish the plate fine. Only, I need to hand-feed him. (OMG! I am a bad mother)
My pooing is like that. It is not an activity for my head. So I distract the head with reading. The grey cells just sends a signal for exit and then let the gravity do its work.
I need words, My brain needs words.
I had finished all the words available in that small room. Think.
The profound moment!
I have my kindle, in my office bag (I always carry it in my bag) the bag is on the bean bag, the bean is just one foot away from the bath-door.
I grabbed the doorknob and tried to listen to sounds outside. The humans are busy eating (Thank God, I made a very good breakfast today- Rawa Idli, Sambhar and ground-nut chutni)
I tip-toed to the bean, unzipped the first slot of the bag, where I usually keep my Kindle. Dunked my hand in for – Nothing.
Checked the next slot, Nothing! Lump in the throat full to the brim ready to strangle me. Shit said the voice inside my head.
Next slot and … finally! I found it, I found my Kindle in the slot, resting next to the laptop.
Bless the soul who said Kindle’s battery should never die when a reader seeks it.
The rest, I really don’t care. I did the thing, my way 🙂
Happy Reading folks. Keep your books close to your heart.
PS: Why is this post sprinkled with the word poo so much! I got to stop using it any further in this post.
PPS: Duh! This is the end of the post. Seems like the morning panic has damaged my brain and engraved the word poo in it. “How are you
pooing doing today?” What time are you coming back from poffice office? “ Poome Come early”…
PPPS. I chuckled loud writing PPPS Because I almost wrote the PPS as “..my brain and engraved poo in it”. That is pure eww, Don’t imagine it. Puff. Another narrow escape.
PPPPS: Count my blessings for today- 2(Kindle and PPPS) so far. Actually 3, I managed to poo in the end.
Moral of the story.
Always, Always, Always keep your stuff in the room attached to the bath. Not in the living room.
Order a wall-hanging bookshelf for the bath.
Let go of some towels, make space for a book in the towel stand.
Always leave the Kindle in the first zip.
The photo is of my son. I just picked it out. No reason.
My better half did it again. One trip to Leh in a lifetime isn’t enough. He has to go again. and again.
Me: But why Leh again? This will be your third… you were there less than a year ago.
Him: Yeah but it wasn’t raining then? I want to see rain.
But, When a man got to go, he got to go. So, up he goes..to Leh, on this Royal Enfield.
The Only change next time be- #solobikeride will be #nosolobikeride
These pictures are from Tso Moriri. This is a mountain lake. The lake and surrounding area are protected as the Tso Moriri Wetland Conservation Reserve. This was his de-tour, and he was out of mobile reach for two whole days.
I don’t blame him to go incommunicado … This is so bloody gorgeous! Feast your eyes ❤
Me: let’s pack our bag and move here. People actually live here!
Am a strict mother these days. Most days, am not. Meeting the supply with the demand. My son has his first first-grade school assessment coming up
next week tomorrow . Maths. English, English dictation and Environment Science. But he is not showing any interest in preparing himself to be assessed. I really envy mother who has THE kid, natural in studies. (Are you reading this neighbour?)
On most of the days, I have no patience with a first-grade kid. I do not sit with him for his school work. That is the only job for my better half. He is a master. I do feel, Husband is disposable when he is around the house. But clearly, I need him when there is an assessment next week… Get your butt here soon! Puff! But he isn’t here this week.
So there I was, on the last weekend. Sitting along with my son, with practice sheets and prayers to God “Please give me the strength to make it alive till the end of
this hour these 10 minutes and not strangle him.” Every 10 minutes, I remind myself. He is my only son. Be a saint, DO NOT kill.
He clearly wants to escape. Actually me too. Both of us. But Life is cruel. Doesn’t give us what we want. I hope he understood that last weekend.
Do not judge me. Before you imagine me as a fat-rat matron holding a stick, wearing a printed knee-length frock and thick-framed black spectacles conducting a reign of terror, try spending 10 minutes with a boy who is more interested in super-hero than vowels of English.
10 minutes. Only. With a six-year-old who imagines wand in a pencil, the erasure as a transformer disguised and living among us in plain sight, who have to pee because I asked him the spelling of piled. What?! pencil is to write notes? I thought it is a magic wand with the black core from kryptonite!
Don’t blame him though. English is a weird language.
For instance, Why the hell Silent letter? Silent K in Knew. And wait, this gets better on the Island. There! A letter, an alphabet sitting right there, not making any sound. Just being there. Silently. The same S when added to “ex” becomes one hot cake bun. Or , Don’t get me even started about Queue. That is just one letter Q. What are the others doing there? Did the person doze off with one hand on u, other on e?
So now I have to know why K is silent in Knew but not Clock.
Me: “Listen to the sound Adi, K, clock ends with K.”
Son: But Mummy ..K is silent.
Oh Boy! Not in every word honey. That will be like a totally deaf alphabet. No sound.
Imagine how many zillions of space, wordpress would have saved, if it weren’t for these notorious silent letters. They exist but only in bytes. Taking up space but producing no sound.
That was English. Maths seems like a good boy. I mean, the subject is all logical, Right? Wrong. What the hell number-names doing here….legacy of English gf?. I mean who writes forty, repeat. forty and not 40 these days?
Meh! On the cheque lady? Hmm. Okay. But still. All the number names, just teach so he can write me a thousand dollar cheque every month. I only need that much. Teach him that. Did you notice the silent “ue” in there, with that condescending mind..won’t make a noise, these aren’t worth our talk.
So that was my Sunday.
At the end of the day, It was time for bed. The teacher was out of my system and mother was in, the guilty mother who punished her child and raised voice a bit longer than desired. He was almost asleep. Eyes closed and heavy breathing.
I said ” Adi, Maine aaj aap pe bahut gussa hui na ? Was I too angry at you today?”
Barely had these words left me and could reach my son sleeping next, I heard him reply. Yes. I signed. This is gonna be tough. All I wanted to tell him how much I love him and how important is reading, writing and learning and other parenting stuff.. yada yada yada blablabla.
Me: “But, You know that I love you no bounds. Right?”
“Who is my favourite boy in the whole world?”
He raised his head enough to show me his smile: Me!
Him again barely 2 secs later.Or may be less than a sec: And you are my favourite person Mummy!
My heart just melted. And I relaxed. probably the first time on that hard day.
The best part of being Ma is the love I get from my little man, No matter, how much I keep him away from his playtime and his super-hero, in the end, am forgiven and loved again. Any adult would have labelled me lunatic for life, but for my son, Am still his favourite ❤
…..because life sucks when am NOT reading. Why can’t life be about reading, sleeping and occasionally eating?
Life, the sucker, has to happen exactly when I have a good book in hand, Exactly while the story is creating a world filled with moving images, characters, era, location, emotions and transporting me to a time where I cannot possibly ever reach without the words in the book.
When I remember the quotes from the book, or can almost smell the rain, barish, soil my feet walking down the muddy path, feel the sadness of the daughter waiting for her father, the pain of losing a dear friend, the happiness of finding love, the redemption,the world of witches and wizards and flying dinosaurs
At least life doesn’t suck when it is within words.
And so I do all that life expects from me, cooking, packing lunch, office -home, But I hate the author for engaging my mind.
The result? I read whenever I can.
On the toilet seat; when the pot is whistling on the stove; when am walking eight stairs down at the office; when am at the elevator; on the dinning.
THE GOD OF SMALL THINGS, is the first novel in my memory by an Indian author to won BOOKER PRIZE(1997). I remember when I heard this news, I was very proud. I didn’t forget the name ever Arundhati Roy and the title. But I wasn’t a collector then. I couldn’t afford to buy it. It was too expensive for someone who just started reading novels outside academic. I was very sure, one day I will read it.
20 years later ( See, why I complain about life?), it took me 20 years to buy this book.
I was at the mall last weekend, waiting for father-son to join me when I wandered into a Bookstore and found this. 20th ANNIVERSARY EDITION.
And of course, I bought it. Without thinking that probably it will be cheaper to order online. Am on page 43 and I know why this is a winner Book. I have already been to Kerala(where the story is set) and back several times. Am a Christian now. The book is a poetic novel.
“Things can change in a day.”
“Chacko was Mammachi’s only son. Her own grief grieved her. His devasted her.”
Good authors are like pied-piper of Hamelin. The readers will merrily follow them into the world that really doesn’t exist; to doom or rejoice. The beauty of this world is that there is only one story and as many dimensions as there are readers. Each reader follow the pied-piper but see, feel, smell and sign in his world! For me, some days the story comes alive at the night in the softness of light from the table-lamp, after the father-son have gone to sleep. This is the time when the world outside my window is still and dark. But the words in the book are thumping for my attention to be read more. I stop reading and soak in the story. Estha and Rahel (Twins from God of Small Things) forms a bond that I wish to share with my unreal twin brother 🙂
Then there are non-readers like my husband, who never failed to ask me when he sees me with a book in hand.
” Am gonna ask you a question from that book now! Ready for the exam?” ” Does it have pictures?! What no photo..must be a very bore book” “Abhi tak pass nahi hui, kitna padege?”
I hate reading because I miss it so much when am not!
If only I had a job that gives me money while I spend time reading a novel from my favorite genre.
I have analyzed this life situation very carefully, There is perhaps a parallel universe where I can read all I want, but it doesn’t sound like a good ending.
Somewhere Am a librarian but it is too silent for a Libran social butterfly like me.
Or working at a bookstore- that will be then even more pathetic, surrounded by this sea of novels of all genre by all authors great, small, big and all I can do is arrange shelf, help the kid find coloring book! I wouldn’t survive a day.
Or working at a publisher – Naah, I wanna read a book that I like, not the one I publish. Not anyone bossing me to read this when I wanna read that.
So in this universe, I have settled for reading on the toilet seat.
I do have the plan to open my own Reading Cafe one day. Walls filled with books. From all genre. By all authors. A chalkboard-painted wall to write your favorite quote, to paint the world from novel just finished. The cafe will have all sort of sitting arrangement, from hammock to bean-bag, to give you a cocoon to just read and drink coffee. Where one could come out and quote favorite line or read fav passage and not feel out of life.
I will serve coffee and wait for monsoons. Authors will be the celebrity. Air will be filled with quotes from books and stories will come alive. There will be talks, discussions and book club meetings. Each will have own world to immerse in from any genre or be at any place the author takes them to.
One room definitely will be for people reading the last leg of the novel. DO NOT DISTURB ME when I need to know the end.
Life finally will stop sucking.
My voice speaks in italics.
Today is the first day of Ramzan/Ramadan. Am fasting. Means no food, no water from sunrise to sunset. I can eat as much as I like from sunset to sunrise (And then do not complain why the hell I didn’t lose weight, I was supposed to be that girl who lost weight in a month. Yes Girl.. not Lady)
No shitty thoughts too. No gossiping. No bitching. (I guess that is the true spirit of Ramzan)
No angry voice in the head. Be calm and peaceful. No hungry thoughts.
Remember no shitty thoughts.
Yeah right! Tell that to a mother of a 5-year old boy, staying with her sister who has twin boys.
Three boys under my roof. I wonder how my roof is holding up.
How to mute this boy? Strangling with just a little bit pressure?
“Hey, jumping jacks. That is a sofa, not the trampoline. I will throw you out of the 7th-floor window, let’s see how you bounce up.”
Remember no shitty thoughts.
Okay. Big and Bold.
Am fasting. yeah, yeah, you have heard me write that before.
So my internal organs are just napping right now. They must feel like me, my head and heart on the days when I have little or no work at the office.
Do nothing but just be there, just in case. Do the bare minimum. Check emails, Coffee-try-not-to-yawn- lunch-do-not-close-eyes-coffee-who-asked-you-to-eat-so-much-on-a-sleepy-day. Hurray. Time to go home.
Moving ahead. Voices inside me today.
Kidney guffawed. Yay.. no water, nothing to filter. Can I go back to watching Stomach? She looks very slim trim today ❤
Puff Kidney.If only it could work like that. Stomach slim trim from not eating for few hours.
Brain: Look at the kidney. Both of them! No load, absolutely no work. Why do I have to work alone? Grrrr Grudging
Release the pee signal. *Evil laugh*
And am off to release the pee. Sitting on the commode, I do wonder. Truthfully. Cross my heart and hope to die.
Why am I peeing today? Where is this fluid coming from.. whose pee is this? OMG. Who do I have inside me eating?
Remember no shitty thoughts.
So Folks – Eat, drink and enjoy. But remember no shitty thoughts, no bad intentions, No grudges and no Grr.
Happy first Roza! Enjoy the look of it 😉
Son : Am the King…
Me : Aha.. So who is your Queen… (Son looks lost ) She could be any girl whom you like the most..like your favorite. Could be from your school, day care or our apartment..
Son : Okay…I choose you to be my queen.
Me : Naaah.. She has to be your age…like how your Papa and I could be King and Queen. Tell me who is your favorite girl…
Son : Okay..Aarna… She can be my queen.
Thinks for a while..
No..Arey..You be my Queen. What would Aarna know about being Queen? Am the King and you are my favourite girl.
Me : I love this little King.
I hope he never grows up and am always his favourite person. 💗