Monday, December 29, 2008

A short story:

The music had lain there for years, forgotten. Now she looked at it trying to remember why she had not listened to it in so many years. She switched it on. The tunes floated inside her brain, engulfing her in its haunting warmth….traversing down every cell in her body. And then it reached her heart.

It felt like she was struck by a hammer. She doubled over; her arms going around herself instinctively….trying to brace herself from the vacuum that was threatening to pull her in. She had thought she had come a long way…choosing to be where she was. She had stopped her search, forgiven, forgotten.

A blankness surrounded her now. And darkness. Tears poured down un-sensed and unchecked. Panic. She looked up at the darkness, reaching out for somebody….something. But there was nobody, nothing.

Only emptiness. The music had stopped

Another short story:

She didn’t know her father, only her mother and her two brothers. They lived in poverty. Her mother was her only connect to the world. So it wasn’t really a mystery that the two brothers left her when their mother died. She was only 12 and all alone.

She survived growing up to be young woman. Though she was plain looking, she could have turned head had she grown up in a richer environment. Now she wore a colourless dirty peasant dress and tied a scarf around her head…roaming around the market place with her empty cart trying to figure out her next meal. People around her were happy, laughing, talking. She felt like a ghost. Nobody noticed her, talked to her.

She grew older….yet without any connect with the world or its people. She never cried at her fate accepting what was given to her. Desolate and empty.

Now she suddenly remembered and felt the desolation and emptiness after all these years. And finally she cried. Cried at her fate and her disconnect with her world or its people.

At last she knew.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A breather:

From the unpredictability of this city and life itself.

A little road trip to a forest, a hill station, to a bit of history and finally to a golden beach.

We had initially planned to go by train but the 26-11 incident changed all that. So we decided to brave a 14hrs drive to Dandeli in the north of Karnataka. And it was this decision that made the trip such a memorable one.

Taking only two breaks – one at Mcdonalds (yuck!) at 8 and another at a tapri chai joint near Ramnagar at 3 in the morning (where we finished all the eggs and bread he had) – we reached Dandeli at 6 when the sky was just getting lighter. Kali Resort, where we stayed was a disappointment for me because it’s at the edge of civilization and the river there smelt of chemicals. Throughout the night we could hear the sound of the huge machineries of the paper mill across the river. One city bred friend thought it was the sound of the river!

Dandeli, a part of a 5000sqkm forest which stretches upto Kerala, is absolutely beautiful….filled in parts with huge bamboo thickets and really tall trees (teaks and rosewood included). Thankfully the state government is aware and follows stringent rules. Apart from tigers and elephants, this area is home to the gorgeous Black Panther and thousands of exotic birds. What I loved about this forest is that it’s filled with fireflies. When the sky turns a dark blue, the bamboo thickets and shrubs come alive with these sparkling glows….thousands of them. It’s such a magical sight!

One day, a horde of some 40 girls and guys came to the resort for a rafting trip. They turned the resort into a mela-ground, shattering everybody’s peace and creating chaos. No respect for nature or the wildlife….just wanting to have Loud Fun. There’s hardly any ecology left…I wonder whether the next generation will ever learn?

The boys in our group had to leave early and since the three of us girls had a few more days of holiday left, we decided to go ahead and explore on our own….(thanks to our plan of taking the car instead of the train). So we moved on to Panhala for a day, took God’s blessing at the Mahalaxmi temple at Kolhapur and zoomed onwards to Ganapatiphule…reaching just as the sun had turned orange in the sky.

We spent one whole blissful day on the golden shell filled beach…lying down as the waves crashed over us, collecting shells and live crabs, making sand castles, skinny dipping and walking on the endless uninhabited beach.

We set off back home just as the sun was setting, splashing the sky with brilliant pink and grey clouds……cursing our need to earn money and making plans for another longer road trip.

Friday, December 12, 2008


It was a gentle day. The train whizzed past. A piece of paper caught the gust and rose high up in the air waltzing to its own tune.

The sun, low on the horizon peeped thorough the palm leaf and turned my living room golden. The leaf swayed with the wind and the sun danced on the wall. A stray ray caught my lashes and the world got speckled with gold dust.

The warmth…. played hide and seek with me. Now here now gone. It’s not mine…..but I want a few drops from it. Like an elixir……revival till another day……