Every Weekend’s Story!

For someone who has always been nocturnal, the early morning exercise routine is almost no-no. And well, evenings are the harbinger of all joy and no pain, which means no exercise again! I am not proud of it, but when week days and nights go as hectic as they have been for the last couple of months for me, it becomes truly difficult to make time for the most important tool of our life – our body!

The light-hearted doodle strip is only to bring upon a smile, albeit a familiar one sprinkled with a little bit of guilt; but  also here’s to everyone who tries! To take out that little bit of time and spend it on the well-being of our body and mind.

May our weekends be less like the below. Cheers!

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Beyond The Wall

We are breezing through the German farmlands, making our way back to the capital after an express trip to Braunschweig for a friend’s wedding. Lazy afternoon, a smooth train ride, sunshine sprawled all around, a weekend away couldn’t be more blissful. I stifle a yawn as I browse through the photos we took the previous evening, while hubby has a city map spread in front of him that he is staring at intently in an attempt to draw out a plan for the next day. I want to jump in and take part but the autumn colours outside and the hangover inside from last night’s party distract me well enough.

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I snuggle in my shawl, look out the window thinking of the wedding party. It was such a personal, intimate affair that it left my heart all warm and fuzzy by the end of it! The sawing of the wooden log definitely wasn’t the most delicate of wedding rituals, but then it is a German tradition and there wasn’t much left to wonder! The newly weds’ speeches, the montage and all the toasts, both in German & English were endearing and quite movie-like too. The highlight, of course, was dancing and me DJ-ing every now and then, oh, not in the truest sense of the word but if suggesting peppy Hindi numbers to alternate between the German ones counts, then sure I did a good job of it.

Continue reading “Beyond The Wall”

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.

Follow Your Heart, Not The Herd

Oft these days, I come across blogs, articles and interviews about people who quit their ‘9-5’ job to follow their true calling. I read about how life in a cubicle was almost stifling and offered no contentment that they had hoped for, and how taking that leap of faith turned out be their best decision. It is inspiring to read such stories! Choosing to do what you love over something you are unenthusiastic for is definitely the best gift you can give to yourself. Especially, if you found yourself bound by the strings of society and you decided to break those shackles.

One of the more popular true-callings that I read about happens to be travelling the world. Some others are about starting-up on their own, building apps, games and services what not. Trust me when I say, I think all this is absolutely great! I’ve had the opportunity to interact with a few such gems, thanks to social media. And their enthusiasm is infectious; their belief in what they so passionately do commands respect.

However, I have also come to observe how this is benchmarking what makes you successful, more importantly, happy. Unless you have jerked off some (or at least one) of those societal shackles, you are probably not doing it right in life! That, if you are leading what is infamously known as the ‘corporate life’, you are seen as moving farther away or even completely foregoing the simple pleasures of life. That, you are monetising your life by striving to go up the corporate ladder! I feel confused when I hear people tell me about their jobs with such disdain, because well, they are just ‘9-5’ jobs. “What would you rather be doing then?” is (as politely as possible) my next question, and pat comes the reply, “Oh, no. I love my job, but well – it is just a corporate job. Nothing fancy you see!”.

Jumping to extreme viewpoints is a plague our world is diseased with. The ‘either-or’ philosophy is what we go by, anything grey is befuddling. Also is the habit of labelling everything. This is good, that is pathetic. That is cool, this is boring. What I am trying to say here is, just because one is trending does not mean the other is completely meaningless. A career with the corporates teaches you as much as travelling the world on your own – yes, they teach you some very different things and that’s the difference you want to choose for yourself.

As I sit staring out the window in our living room, feeling rather preachy, I remember the whatsapp texts from my brother the other day, telling me excitedly about this taxi driver who studied economics and yet chose to taxi simply because he loved meeting new people; and then I also remember my two friends who went travelling around the world for months and have now come back rejuvenated to reinvade the corporate world, this time in the sphere of their interest.

To them I raise a toast, for, no job is less fancy if you find the joy in your heart to do it day in, day out!

 

The Wedding Bells

Too many wedding bells have started to ring, and I get excited when I hear the announcements. After a few “wow”s and “congratulations!”, I get down to know the more interesting part. No no, it’s not the preparations! It’s the story of the couple – their story, the tale of their lives, which I am sure each of them will narrate to their grandchildren in great detail and delight. Of course, each version will make the hero look/sound better and each version will be better than all the previous ones! But, they will have a story, and a turning point which would have changed these couples’ lives forever! And what more fun than to listen to all these stories over chat and phone calls…

Carefully avoiding all of the personal details, these stories that I have got to know so far range from college-love to post-college-realizations, to love-at-first-sight and love-at-a-matrimony-site… each one of them whole and honest, and shining like crazy diamonds with love!

A dear friend of mine had once said, “go ahead, make your own story!”. These words ring in my ears even today. (Of course, he is talking about making your story of Life!, at a much broader perspective.) He is also the genius at narrating weddings and at describing with utmost precision the emotions that pour out when you see a dear friend get married and embark on the journey of love. I wish I could make you read each one of those blog posts that he has written! But, I have a better plan. I will make you read the one he writes soon after either of us gets married – whoever’s happens first that is.

As for now, I just wish all these people a lot of happiness together!