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Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Are We Truly Happy?

Please Note: Absolutely aimless post. Read at your own risk.

Many moons ago I was once asked to write an essay on happiness. Yeah convent school nuns can be lame. Anyways, so I did write (with some inputs from my aunt who taught in another convent school then) and scored really well. In short, happiness to me back then was scoring high on my essay.

Please note English language was my only strong subject then…

But the idea of happiness changed with each passing year. At some point of time it was getting into a good college (never going to divulge my scores), then meeting the ‘cool’ friends, meeting the right guy (Thank god for him!) and landing the perfect job (another story altogether). Happiness is not constant. Over the past couple of years I have questioned myself over and over again about this bloody damn thing.

Happiness; this nine letter word is huge. Huge in terms of the stuff it includes. Emotional, material, mental, physical and god knows what! Frankly, I have no idea if I am truly or anybody is truly happy. Right now I couldn't care less.


This very question has led to me to very many fights, endless days of frustration and pushed me into abyss of nothingness. Yes, the tryst for happiness can do that to you. Again, you might say happiness or being happy would completely depend upon your definition of happiness…whatever that is. So what is the definition of happiness?

My friend R finally responded to my frantic mails/chat pings/calls after months of hibernation. Why did she go into hiding? Simply because she too was lost in the bottomless pit of unhappiness and is looking for ‘happiness’. So what is her definition? Probably find the right guy, fall in love, get married, be cared for, have a sense of belonging and more…Yes, it all sounds beautiful and it would be had she been meeting new people or searching for this right guy in the earnest. No, sweetie Prince Charming won’t just appear out of thin air! You have to try to catch him or rather trap him…

Another friend, let’s call her B, is not sure what career she should pick. One day she prefers the written word and is confident it would pay her, the other day it feels like the worst choice ever. Is she happy? No, she is quite a cribber about it.  So what is the solution? First, to stop cribbing and then…she would have to try. She would first have to try to get a job, read any job!

Then come I – married the man I wanted but not the M-I-l. I have the job I wanted to do but it doesn’t pay as much as I would like it to. Not sure. Why? Because life happened to us and how! We have tensions, familial wars to fight, acceptance issues, and so much more.


So what I am trying to say here? Nothing! Because I am only ranting! Apart from reading this nonsensical blog we could all do one thing – get real and live in reality. First, let’s not define it as it gives us an illusion which has no place in real lives. Second, stop cribbing, i.e. attain nirvana. Third, stop reading this post and do something you really like… have a chocolate? Watch a cartoon show? Eat unhealthy Chinese food? Read a good book? Gah. Go on decide and stick to it… only then shall you be happy. 

Friday, 14 June 2013

From A Half Remembered Dream

She saw him from a half remembered dream. That morning on her way to work as she stopped to pick up her favourite yellow carnations, she’d thought it was him. Across the street, cars zipping by on the busy street, a mangy dog yelped as it got almost run over by a car, he stood there at the crossing. The light still showed red.

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The park was flourishing with spring flowers, the walkers briskly going their way, the children making the usual ruckus and all this while, he sat reading his book by the lake. It was a serene day. Light breeze in the air, the sun as if in a good mood, shone brightly enough to warm one’s heart to delight.

She had spotted him first; he never once looked up. From afar she could make out his feature – the typical tall dark and handsome man. And he loved reading too. Interesting man, she’d think. Weeks went by and each day motivated, she waited for him to look up from his reading. He never did.

She began walking past him, causing her routine to go haywire. She walked by him a lot. But he never looked up.

Then one day he did. But this was only to look back and smirk at the kids making their usual banter. Her heart had skipped a beat when she saw him. Only if he saw her looking back at him!
The winds changed, bringing a chill to her heart. He still sat at the same bench, reading. She merely walked by or simply sat looking at him. By now the regulars at the park knew she would come for him. But this man was unaware.

Soon the passing by folks looked at her as if she was a lovelorn fool. Yes that she was. Seasons changed yet again. The blooms died leaving the foliage chilled to the core. The trees shed their garment and birds moved homes. There was usual ruckus just a handful of loners like her in the park now.
He was there too, sitting still, reading. Gathering courage, she walked up to him. She saw his beautiful face closely for the very first time. Suddenly the chill in the air warmed her heart. He was gorgeous. She stood there for a while watching him closely as his fingers continued to read.


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He looked the same, standing across the busy street. The florist handed her, her yellow carnations bouquet and yet, she stayed put a while longer. The light turned green and the dog ran across safely. He shuffled his feet for a few seconds and walked slowly, crossing the street. A car screeched, coming to a halt with a loud bump. For a second she lost all hope and almost dashed onto the street… but stopped when she saw him slowly hobble by with his stick. 

Thursday, 18 April 2013



Recently a colleague asked when I found time to write. I mentally smirked realising that she hadn’t checked the date on my post. It was eons ago. Nevertheless she had enjoyed the post and re-reading it, I realised that I had enjoyed writing it. Does this mean that I am back to blogging regularly? Not sure about that.

I have moved on. No, not away from Ire but into a new house that affords me more storage space! Yes, it is exactly four minutes and 26 seconds away from where I lived previously. I have no remorse leaving behind the old. This is my new mantra of sorts, making peace with what I have and not should have been and should have had.

Anyways back to why I am writing here. Two things happened in the recent past and got me thinking (believe you have no idea how many things I just brush away! :P).

First, my previous maid suddenly disappeared one day. She never turned up for work two days in a row. A very happy husband exclaimed, “jaan chhooti” but hey who was going to do the dishes? This made him ask the landlords who informed a little too late that she had fought with her husband. That’s it? That terrible woman had left me in a lurch! What with office work, cooking and now cleaning the house too? I would have to do it all. This was my reaction.

Three days later she turns up and entered smiling shyly. I mentally thanked my lucky stars and questioned her where she had been. She first said she wasn’t well. To this, losing my patience, I said that a silly fight with the husband is no reason to bunk work. No reaction from so I let it go. However, in a minute she spilled the entire story.

Her husband was a drunk and a wife beater. They had fought over some petty issues and he had hit her. The beating got out of hand so her brother had to intervene. They registered a police complaint as well. This caused her husband to throw her out and their five children. It took her two days to recover and move into a smaller house closer to her brother’s place. The husband hadn’t called or apologised.

I was a little embarrassed with my earlier behaviour and offered her tea. Two days later she announced that she was moving back. My loud ‘why’ interrupted her smile so lowering her gaze she replied, “My elder daughter is very attached to her father. She went back the next day. How do I leave her alone with him? The world is not good enough for a young girl to live alone with a man. Plus, he is a drunk and a man who drinks doesn’t see any difference between a woman and a daughter when he is intoxicated.”

I don’t think I reacted for a few seconds. My maid did not trust her husband; her children’s father with their daughter. The very idea her thoughts painted had me dizzy and made me want to throw. She and I did not discuss this again.

My new landlady was kind enough to make sure we had a maid before we settled in. This is how I met Jasmine. When I was expecting a lady to walk in, I was surprised to open the door to a little girl. With a nervous smile she came in early in the morning and went on how she wanted badly to work for us. However, hubby and I had our suspicions – we did not want to hire an underage girl.

Day 2 – when I asked Jasmine how old she was, she quickly replied she wouldn’t know. Rubbishing her answer I asked how could that be possible and she was like I came here when I was very little. Only my mom who is in the village can really tell you how old I am. We dropped it for the day.

Day 3 – we had to settle how much we would pay her so I asked if her didi would drop by so that we could discuss. Again, she was quick to reply that her did was busy and I could pay her whatever I deemed fit.
It has been a week. My questions have stopped. School, education, food, her village etc. she always gave me random answers which won’t add up. So we have dropped it altogether. Don’t know if it is right on my part to let her continue. If I ask her to leave, landlady might throw her out as well.

What would you do in a situation like this?

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