Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A journey’s beginning:

I was bone-tired. I had to Get Out. My friend S suggested Kamshet. Lots of people suggested other places. Some said it will be too hot at this time of the year. I said – Let’s just Go!

So after getting up in the wee hours of one Sat morning, four of us hurriedly left the city behind. A flat tire just in the beginning of the journey did not mar anybody’s spirit.
A very bumpy 10km drive inside from Kamshet village led us to M’s cottage overlooking the lake and the dam. 3 happy energetic dogs greeted us at the gate. A rustic cottage, a hammock, cold beer, mellow sun and friends….nobody wanted anything more from life at that point in time.

Another group arrived in due course but we were happy to see that they never ventured out of the ‘campus’. Which meant that the lake was all to our selves and of course M who swam in its cold and quiet waters. We sat by the lake in the morning, evening and night. It was beautiful, serene and absolutely silent…one could hear the wind through the trees and the distant calls of the birds. Each of us took turns to sit or walk by the lake alone – to contemplate or to explore the physical or the beyond. I found peace, A found a snake which looked like a Krait, S found snake-holes and D found flowers and leaves to take pictures of.

What I simply loved was sitting at the lake in the night with a shining moon, a star-laden sky and the lake and hills in the distance all aglow in the pure silver light. It seemed like a different world – so beautiful, secluded and pure. I could have sat there forever.

The short hikes along the road in the fast fading twilight and besides the mist covered lake in the morning simply took away all the tiredness that had seeped in. The air was cold and refreshed and cleaned the cob-webs that had settled deep in the mind. Jim Corbett was my first real trip to the Himalayas. It was the place which stirred my restlessness, made me question myself and opened up a whole new path for me – as clear as the mountain air. Kamshet somehow reminded me of Jim Corbett…the same sense of calm, beauty and a seed of a dream. I wonder now at the path that I see slowly opening – will it be just as refreshing as before?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Good Old City:

I finished work late today and was standing outside my office waiting for a cab to come by. The road was comparatively deserted. One cabbie pulled up but then refused to go where I wanted to go. After saying no, he immediately got out and waved to one other cab for me. Some two more taxis stopped. He made sure that I took the one which was standing there for a long time waiting for a passenger.

I was amazed at this guy’s thoughtfulness. First for me and then for the other cabbie.

I promise I’ll stop shouting at all the auto and taxi-wallahs like the way I do – in my typical Delhi way.

And for the first time in four months I behaved like a Bombay-wallah – I loosened up and asked my taxi guy to switch on the radio. He switched it on.

“Tum bhi chalo, hum bhi chalen…chalti rahe zindagi….”

Yes, so right!

Sunday, November 04, 2007


One junior person in my team listens to ‘re-sung’ versions of old Hindi songs. Kumar Shanu-singing-Kishore Kumar-types. She thinks its original and keeps asking me how I could make out that it’s a ‘fake’!!

The juniors look at me strangely when I tell them that I like old Hindi and English numbers.

Another junior person wants to get rich fast. He keeps repeating ‘I have to earn money fast.’ He’s just 6 months in the industry and earning 3 times more that what I used to get when I was a trainee.

I met a woman a few weeks back; she was wearing a saree that day. The first thing that she said after saying hello was ‘please excuse me for being dressed like a moron but I had a workshop.’

I sometimes wonder what all I’ll get to hear in the next 10 years.

I burnt my fingers very badly the other day. The pain was excruciating but it didn’t faze me one bit. Because I knew that this pain will at least end.

Review meeting in Goa – it’s an oxymoron. Goa is a place for friends or families or lovers or for just being alone. I don’t understand the funda of taking people from all branches to Goa just to tell them how poorly everybody’s performed. Thankfully I could manage to slip away for sometime during dinner and spend that time walking the beach.

However these walks turned out to be just as claustrophobic – at one end were the office people discussing farcical issues while at the other end were the numerous amorous couples strolling in the dark. I found myself stuck between the falsities of both the world dying to run away yet again.

The trance-like crashing waves and the soft sand held me there.

The cheek-by-jowl buildings here block out the sky completely. I don’t think I have seen the moon or even a star in this city’s night sky yet. I miss watching the sparkling moon and the feathery clouds from my balcony in the other city. Sometimes – especially during approaching winter – late in the night when the moon’s high up in the sky and a faint cold wind blew, I could sniff the air and smell the snow-peaks and pine leaves – my dur khaima. My home. My peace.