Thursday, August 18, 2011


I stood at cross roads. I was in a dilemma. There are things I love to do in life and there are things I want to achieve in life for reasons of my own. The things I want to achieve in life are not always the things I love to do. What I love is writing. I love to arrange letters and words in chains. The tall ones,the lean ones, the round ones, the curves and the dots and dashes. What I had wanted to achieve was the civil service. I wanted to clear it so badly because my teachers, nuns, parents and grandparents had talked me into that dream so much that I could not imagine myself doing anything other than an administrative job. Do I love it? I don’t know. But my heart still yearned for it. My prelims result was out yesterday and I had not cleared it. And as my parents say “Come on chinnu, writing is not a job !! writing is… is what people do when they already have a good job in hand..they don’t just write and sit”.
To top up things there was the pending marriage issue. Being unemployed reduces my market value. I am constantly reminded that I’m a girl and that remaining unmarried or opting for late marriage is not something preffered for my gender by the society. Excuse me? The society my child, society – samooham. My father sends deep sighs each time he sees me and my ‘well wishers’ expressed their inmost talents in trying to find a reason for my decision.
I thought about the visit my uncle and aunt were going to pay us next week. It brought pain in my stomach. The questions, apprehensions, advices and the unapproving head nodes would soon follow. A price my parents have to pay for providing me education and freedom to choose from. A price I make them pay for the good they do to me. I was certainly not feeling good. I was standing at a cross road.
Now I had to make a decision, choose a road. Should I join the competetive exam saga again or should I concentrate more on writing? I had to choose a road. I had to find a road. I stood at cross roads. I wish I had a miraculous compass with me showing me the right path to follow. We all wish for it at times, don’t we?
I love the freedom life offers. I don’t like to be tied down in some chain. I wanted to write, to drive, to paint the world pink and green and to run away to the cold hill top that so often comes in my dream. I wanted to travel to villages and teach the children to read and write. I want to make soups and bake cakes and have french wine. I want to sit on the couch reading my favourite book with brewing hot coffee in my favourite coffee mug painted orange and yellow. I want to write, write and write about the little children, the fairy in their dreams, the cobbler, the dancer, the saint, the king and his queens. That is what I wanted. That is what I want. Why do people tell me its not possible?

I also know its not easy. There are broken bridges, rivers to be crossed and roads less travelled. But that is life all about. Isnt it? The trekking, the swimming the running and climbing. Life is not about laying back in a hammock. Is it? you live it only once. So why don’t we just live it? Why do we whistle and clap for movies like Zindagi na milegi dobara and get back to living our lives like Zindagi zaroor milegi dobara? We all presume that Kal Ho Na Ho’s and Dil Chahta Hai’s can work only on screen. Why do we read Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam’s Wings of fire and Indomitable spirit? Why do you say you love Paulo Coelho’s “The Alchemist” if you don’t get the message?
As the Alchemist tells the confused boy, we should listen to our hearts because the treasure is where the heart is. If you do not listen to your heart it will stay inside you and keep repeating what it thinks. It will never be quiet.

Monday, December 13, 2010

The White Cat

My dad and I paid a visit to my grandmother’s place last Sunday. It had been a long time since I’ve been to my father’s house and I was very eager to meet up with my achamma. The house was at the centre of the plot which had a long drive way. The plot used to be filled with almost a dozen variety of mango trees and cherry plants, guava, chickoo, chaampa trees and plantains, a hundred variety of flowers and fruits which ranged from orchids and anthuriums to konnapoo. The driveway used to be covered with a canopy of lush green foliage. Now the entire haven has gone in oblivion. All that remained were a couple of trees here and there and wild grasses. I quietly looked at the spot where once stood a giant mango tree which also had a swing tied onto it. My achamma used to promise to swing me ten times if I ate one handful of rice. How much I used to love it!
Achamma came out eagerly and hugged me. She looked fit and fine which was quite a relief to me. I walked around the house with her listening to her stories, greviances and other local news.
‘Meow’ - We had an intruder. It was a little cat all white in colour. Achamma introduced me to her. The cat happened to be her only companion in the deserted house. Achamma had preferred to stay back in the house after my grandfather’s death even though her children forced her to accompany them. Appooppan was a well read man and according to me he knew more things than Britannica Encyclopedia. Appooppan and I had the habit of taking strolls through the courtyard where he narrated to me a thousand colourful tales of love, valour and humour.
She was speaking to the white cat as if it was human. It seemed as if the cat could understand and respond to her. I could not help smiling.
My mind was still wandering in the past. I recalled how I used to run around the house with my cousins Unni and Kunju. Every year I waited eagerly for the vacations for our reunion. At times we would also be joined by our other cousins Devi chechi and Laxmi. The memories of our little gang fishing from the canals and robbing ripe mangoes during mango season made me smile. The well wall which once appeared to be too tall for me was now nothing but a small pile of stones. Achamma used to take me in her arms to show me the fishes in the well. Then there was the side step to the kitchen where three of us (Kunju, Unni and I) usually sat and had our lunch at times. Now it appeared to be such a small space that I could not help wondering how was it possible for three of us to fit in there.
Life changes so much, doesn’t it? And so does things. Matters which were once so important become the forgotten ones and events that made you cry make you smile. Wasn’t life much simpler when your most precious possession were a couple of chocolate wrappers, your biggest enemy your siblings, your only hero your father and the biggest scars the ones on your knees?
I miss my yesterdays and so does each one of us. So cherish your ‘todays’ while you still have it because soon, they are going to be a part of your yesterdays. If I ever knew that my heart would ache so much over these little things I would’ve enjoyed them a lot more when they all happened. Maybe I would have never felt jealous of Devi chechi sleeping with Achamma. Oh no! I think given a chance to go back I would feel a thousand times more jealous with her, fight with Kunju a lot more over the little match box sticker, forgive Unni for breaking my little play house and hug Laxmi with more warmth. But how in the world was I supposed to know that these memories would once give me more warmth than my Kashmiri shawl?
It was getting late. I hugged and kissed achamma. I walked back to our car. She was smiling and I could judge from her face how happy she felt after our visit. The little white cat was purring at her feet. As the car moved I turned back to get a glimpse of her. She had started her little conversation with the little white fellow.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Story : How I tell my first planned lie in life

Scene 1: Eve of the exam
Eight year old aswathi, the protagonist is preparing hard for her class 3 final exams. The class 3 finals seem to be of utmost importance to her because at that point of time hardly does she know the series of CAT,MAT,SNAP, XAT tests that she’d be going through after a few years..not to mention about the civil service one!
Explanation 1: CAT,MAT,SNAP are entrance exams for pursuing your management studies in premier business schools like IIMs, Symbiosis, Xaviour’s etc.
Scene 2: Day of the exam
She reaches her class and to her dismay and to make her worst nightmare true she faces the hard truth of life – it was Malayalam (2nd language) that day while she has come prepared thinking its Mathematics! At the age of eight, the art of bunking and bluffing still unknown to her she is left with no choice but to face the exam.
Scene 3: Same day, evening
She walks back home thinking harder than Einstein. She knows that her father would be waiting for her at the door steps to go through the question paper. She feels more tensed than an Indian envoy to Pak would feel.
She reaches her house and her dad greets her with the expected questions..
How did the exam go – yeah great!! I’d score a 95+ !! then he asks me to show him the paper and my teeny weeny brain comes up with this wonderful idea at the moment “oo..athu njan aa kuttikkaattil kalanju” (oo..I threw it away in between the roadside shrubs) Oho! Trouble, deep deep trouble! Does her dad smell something fishy? Oh yes! He does! Shrub? which shrub? That one..oh fine..lets go and fetch it back! Poor little aswathi! She stands there blinking at him like a little owl and quietly follows him down the lane as he walks towards the shrubs. He starts searching the whole area for the maths question paper and asks her to join the search. She tries to put up the best performance and searches for the question paper which she’s sure, not there (Oh God! When did dad become so jobless!). After quite a long time they return home without being able to trace the item of the day.
That night aswathi does a lot of strain. She has to prepare for Maths which actually comes the next day but her dad thinks its Malayalam. So she keeps her Maths note inside her Malyalam text and does the preparation, oof!!
Scene 4: Next day, bus stop
Aswathi is waiting for her school bus along with her dad. There comes one of her classmates Divya. Aswathi’s father walks over to Divya and starts a friendly conversation and their topic drifts towards the ongoing exams. Aswathi tries her best to avoid it by shouting venda vendacha venda…don’t want dad, don’t want… He is totally amused at this strange behavior but carries on..Well don’t ask the rest! Realisations, confrontations, confessions and finally forgiveness.
Aswathi is also happy that its summer holidays so that she doesn’t have to face Divya for two months.
PS: The results are declared and the protagonist scores an A grade in all subjects and gets the proficiency prize that year also.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

LIFE, The Weirdness!

Life !

Last night I received an sms..It goes like this

“ When I got enough confidence, the stage was gone

When I was sure of losing, I won

When I needed people the most, they left me

When I learnt to dry my tears, I found a shoulder to cry on

When I mastered the skill of hating, somebody started loving me

That’s it..”

Weird isn’t it? Yes that’s life..sometimes it gives you a hundred reasons to laugh. You laugh so much that your stomach hurts…and sometimes, sometimes it stabs you so badly that your eyes starts to bleed. Why are we here? Why the hell are we here?? Is it just to eat, sleep, work and die? Or is there something more? is there a reason..a reason behind my existence..your existence..Is there a purpose I was put here, in this city of Kozhikode in my mother’s womb? Yes, I believe so! May be its my foolishness, and anyone who has a difference of opinion is well honoured. No offense please!

I was just jotting down a mere thought of mine. Everyone is here for a purpose. God has send each one of us down here with a tinge of his blessing, so that we can work a miracle. A mere little miracle it can be, in someone’s life, someone’s faith, someone’s fate.

As Max Lucado says

“You weren’t an accident. You weren’t mass produced. You aren’t an assembly line product. You were deliberately planned, specifically gifted and lovingly positioned on earth by the Master craftsman”.

So love your life, live it.

PS: This is written in dedication to two of my beloved degree class mates, Dhanya and Divya who ended their lives on a sad note last week. God bless their souls, Amen.