Escape Of Today, Autumn Of Tomorrow

If you follow me on Twitter, you’d know how much I love sitting by the large windows of my living room. It should be no surprise then if I say, I am sitting by one of those lovely windows right now as I type this. I am also cozily tucked into a throw and intermittently staring at the marvellous sight that is the balcony of a couple living in the opposite apartment block. Beautifully and just adequately lit by their lamp in the corner and some candles on the table, I can imagine what it must be like to sit in the cool breeze, crisp air and sip some red wine & nibble on chocolates. The gorgeous flowery plants all around the parapet hide the view but it’s a good guess they are having red wine. I’d if I was sitting there and chocolates would be a definite yes! Hubby nods in agreement, but also nudges me to not stare so hard.

Containing myself, I get back to my screen. It is almost 7:15pm, sun has set and the skies are slowly losing their beautiful hues of dusk to blackness. Getting used to the sunsets in London can be a challenge for someone who has lived all her life in a tropical land. We rise and fall (into bed!) with the sun over there, and it feels cumbersome to do it any other way! That is the reason I best like this time of the year here. The days haven’t yet become short and dark, and everything outside is pretty great too. I mean, what’s not to like about autumn. From the way it’s spelled to nostalgia attached with Enid Blyton story books; from scents and softness of the season to its distinct foliage.

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Need I say more?

This is also the time when I begin to click the big tree at my office square everyday, capturing the changing leaf colours and density, in the hope that I will make a stopgap video out of those frames! I know I will go replenish my stock of scented candles soon and buy fresh produce of the juicy berries and apples so my fruit basket can mirror the season colours! And that reminds me, autumn is also the time to cover up again, to bring out the boots, soft cardigans and coats that I had so happily stowed away. I will, of course, refrain myself from getting a new wardrobe but the shops are already lined with such sumptuous textures that it is going to be difficult to stop! I quickly glance at hubby who looks immersed in a book, so I don’t bother telling him of my temptations now. Around the house, all the rugs and cashmere blankets will be shown some sun before it becomes a scarce commodity, along with doling out some soups, leafy healthy preparations out of this new recipe book that hubby gifted me and find more & more excuses to stay indoors to catch up on movies we missed during the busy outdoors-y summer.

I suddenly look out the window again and I don’t see any shadows in that balcony. Just find a faintly flickering candle all by itself on the table. The road below has also quietened now. Well, Sunday has almost come to an end, and it so appears that my fond remembrance and wishful planning for the season have taken me away in thoughts too. But then, it is something to look forward to, isn’t it? Reality surrounds us, and Sundays have become mere reminders of Mondays more than anything else these days. But what is a Sunday devoid of wishfulness, of yearning, of tiny escapes of the mind? It is in these tiny escapes that I tighten my grip on reality and live it, shape it fully.

I now have a reason more to love the autumns!

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Photo of the tree at the office square from last year!
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Elevator Enlightenments

It is almost 12:30pm and I am finishing up an email in a hurry. I need to hop out to meet hubby for a quick lunch. This is Thursday afternoon, sun is out again and having a lunch date in the middle of a work day is never a bad idea. Our favourite joint has reopened after 2 months, with a new look & name and guess what, they are giving a 50% discount on all bills for the first week! Oh of course, we care more for the food there. And, I find myself not really typing much anymore; my thoughts have drifted to the delicious bowl of katsu curry…

My stomach growls so I finish the email, grab my jacket in style and sprint to the doors. I’m the only one in the elevator, so I think to myself this will be a quick ride down thankfully. I turn to the mirror behind me, adjust my glasses and glare at my hair. I quickly comb my hand through the sides and sigh looking at it. It is never in its place. The number of times I must have pursed my lips and cursed my hair is tending to infinity by now.

I hear the polite elevator lady come alive suddenly; it has stopped on a few floors below and two impeccably dressed ladies walk in . I know this is the Human Resources floor, they usually walk in and out in groups, incessantly chatting. We exchange customary smiles and I begin to stare at the floor. Not really, I am actually checking out their shoes, I have a fetish. Well, who doesn’t!

And I digress.

An elevator is a small area, so even if you are too polite you cannot help but overhear the conversations. Perhaps that’s why people fall back on complete silence, sometimes stop breathing even I feel. But not my two companions today! They are discussing how their arms aren’t getting any thinner, how their skin looks dull, and how envious one is of the other’s well-shaped glossy nails, among other such comparative compliments. It is the ground floor finally, I zip up my jacket and head out. The sunshine isn’t warm, the wind is strong and chilly. My hair begins to fly all over the place and I keep trying to pull it back together. Sighing all through. 

My thoughts slowly drift back to the conversation in the elevator. It is almost ingrained in us to find faults with our appearance, isn’t it? No matter which part of the world, women will never be at peace with their bodies. No wonder the skinny models and photoshopped posters have become benchmarks for perfection, and sadly so. I have disliked my hair from the time I have stored memories in my brain! And what if, I think to myself, hating my hair for all these years is actually what made it worse! What if I had sent some good, positive energy, some love towards it and maybe my hair would have listened and only got better with time?

It is just a theory. But it sure sounds like it will be worth a try. Doesn’t it boil down to loving and accepting ourselves for who we are, exactly the way we are? Loving our outward appearance is as important, probably more so in today’s times, so that we are not driven to madness by the judgmental world. So what her hair is curly, or my waist isn’t 28 inches anymore, so what your eyebrows aren’t done or her thighs are prominent. These quirks are what make each of us unique, and we should be accepting of us, as a whole.

I am approaching the other end of this long walk to hubby’s office, I spot him looking in my direction. Our eyes meet, and soon hands are in hands. He immediately compliments, “your hair looks nice, is shining in the sun”. I gape at him for a few seconds and then smile a thank you back! Of course, my hair looks good, I think to myself. Yes, it does.

And the slow long process of testing my theory with practicals just began.