Where Her Heart Lies

‘A girl all of fifteen,
So genial and genteel…’ – was how someone described her once upon a time. 

Perhaps she was much younger than 15 then. Recently, I chanced upon her scribbles in my ol’ diary. There was a note attached to it; it said, ‘A Delightful Imagery from a Charming Mind!’

It took me down the memory lane; and with a smile I thought I would share it with my readers. 
From the memoirs of a bright young girl: 

“I feel like talking about my boathouse in the Kerala backwaters and… how I sit at the edge of the boathouse, and cause ripples in the water with my fingers. I see my reflection in it. And I smile. 

I watch the frogs jump in and out.
I hear them croak. And croak back at them.

I feel like talking of the mountain river… Or of the grasslands.

Or of that banyan tree where my swing takes me higher and higher… and when I get tired of swinging, I gobble down all the colourful toffees one by one sitting under the shade.

Or of lying flat on a small boat swaying slowly over the Hooghly and I look at the Howrah bridge shimmering as the first rays of the day fall over it…

Or of that beach where I hop from one spot to another, on warm sands, in cool waters…and I collect sea shells and put them in my kangaroo pocket…

Or of sitting among the cows with my grandfather in my village and milking the cows…smelling that raw milk…and gulping a cup when he is not watching!

Or of walking across the paddy fields barefoot and reaching over to that giant pump at the corner under the shade of that giant tree… peep into the well beside it…and throw pebbles into it one by one!

Or of that hand-pump at my grandma’s old house… which I try hard to pump… and chuckle away at myself for failing at it every time I try my hand at it

Or of top of that hill from where I could see only white all around… not a sound, and I sit facing the sun feeling its warmth seeping into me

Or of walking across that forest, picking up small wild flowers… those bunches of yellow and pink ones you know…

Or of simply leaning against that tall tree over there and play hide and seek with the sun…

Or of sitting under that big shady tree on that side, and watch the ants pass by slowly, carrying their food on their small backs…then, I poke them in their stomach…and giggle away as they lose their balance and stare back at me with their beady eyes

Or of sitting crouched on that bench in the park… with cool breeze blowing across… of how I blow away the soap bubbles, with some of them popping out right on my nose.
And then of walking along…and meeting this big elephant. Of how he takes me on a ride through the jungle. Of how I eat all his bananas away and giggle away.

Or of walking across that old street licking my ice-cream… and looking at the balloons flying up and up and up…

Or of running across the open grounds with my hands out stretched…till I am out of my breath and then when I am out of my breath… I lie down on the field…close my eyes and laugh.

Or of rolling over the soft green grass… the grass touching my nape, tickling me… and I smile looking at the clouds above…

I feel like talking of all that, of all my dreams… and much more.
With you.”

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Life’s Little Rides

There comes a stage in everybody’s life when the going gets hmmm… well, let us analyze.

This is a stage that you begin with intense Expectations and high Hopes. This is a stage when you have already decided that you are going to put in great efforts to bring out best possible results. You think your life ahead depends on this phase; this can either make it or break it! You are full of enthusiasm and vigor to face obstacles, to overcome challenges. Optimism vibrates within.

And then, you enter.

You begin to settle down. Meanwhile, you also look around to find certain gray areas that you had not thought of in the colorful picture you had drawn with yourself in the centre of it all. You say to yourself, ‘…that is ok. I can manage. After all, I have come here only to learn…’. You beam at your confidence. You feel things are only going to get better from here on. And no matter what, you are never going to lose that positive vibration inside you.

Here, after this part, two things can happen.

First one. You fall into the trap. You become a Dog. You are made to run around the whole time that you almost find it impossible to take even a day’s break and wash your clothes. You hear yourself many-a-time tell your friends/family on phone, ‘Too much work… can’t make it. Sorry!’ You slowly begin to hate the place; hate your desk and hate the very idea of doing this for the meager amount that you get paid at the end of every month. You start realizing of how golden those days were when all that you had to do at night for a quick dinner was say, ‘Chal bey, C’not chaltey hain…’ or how much you miss Bingers’ coffees when your stomach growls at 2.30am!

Second one. You are completely ‘blown away’ by the sudden luxury of living Life King’s size. It is an All Play No Work period of your life. Nobody seems to give a care about who you are, what you are, where you come from, where you go and the types… Nobody wants to know anything about you. You are completely on your own. Your so-called colleagues at your workplace find you amusing. Your so-called Boss looks at you in a way you cannot decipher. You wonder, whether he/she thinks you are a kid and so know nothing and so he/she doesn’t bother much with you… or he/she thinks you are fit-for-nothing, only a liability and so he/she doesn’t bother much with you. Either case, the outcome is the same. So you stop wondering. You realize the power of your new-found freedom. You have all the time in the world – to explore, to travel, to have Fun (something you’ve always wanted to but postponed it to a later date!). You call up your friends often, but hear them say, ‘Too much work… not this weekend. Sorry!’ But that doesn’t stop you from enjoying the bliss of nothingness! Well, only momentarily. And then, you start to get bored. You hate the idleness. You often find yourself appreciating the arduous assignments and demanding deadlines you had back in those golden times. You felt important there, among your friends and professors. It was your world. You feel you truly belonged there.

And you know what this part is called? This part, a small but quite a significant part where all the above happens… this part of your life is called “Internship”.