Saturday, March 12, 2016

When you try and try and try.. and don't succeed

Going through a very alarming phase in my life. Something that perhaps hasn't happened to me since 2004. That was the year where I learnt what resilience meant. What having a strong belief in myself meant. What fighting tough circumstances meant. And I haven't looked back ever since.

But today, since almost a year, it seems to me that I am grappling with some very weird circumstances. There are two parts to my life. Literally.

One part- where I seem to be doing well, seem to be having the heart, the brains and the bravery to fight circumstances, where people are extremely considerate towards me and I can't stop appreciating how this part keeps me alive.

And the second part - where I dream. I have some ambitions. Some visions and I strive to achieve them and I seem to be slipping deeper into the quicksand, every time I try harder. Well, in my statement somewhere, seems to lie the answer isn't it? Stop trying harder!! But guess what, I've even done that. Changed my focus, and put it instead on things under my control. But somehow, it doesn't seem to help.

It's almost like chasing a dream, thinking about it, working towards it - is causing the exact negative effects. And this is not now. It's been happening for a while. Rejections, things not working out, just when the dream is in the hands, it slips away - And while my self belief continues to keep me alive, and my non fear of faliure keeps me up and smiling, I cringe to think of how long will it last.

There was a time I even accepted that okay, everything is going to go wrong now, or at least I'll expect so. Let's see for how long. You wanna test me, then please go ahead and test me. I surrendered to this concept of destiny. And somewhere I felt, I shouldn't give up. That goes against the concept of surrender though. I picked myself up from the muck and started all over again.

Sometimes god's plans can't be deciphered. This is one of those times. What baffles me is not as much the faliure, as it is the lack of clarity to see what destiny has planned. After a point, going with the flow, not trying harder, all become signs of weakness. And THAT I certainly can't afford.

Somewhere so many times silver linings have appeared and I've lived days on end with that faint hope of sunshine. Please god, let the sunshine come. I've been in gloom for too long. I know my problems don't count in front of several ones you'd encounter. But I've waited my turn god. This once, look at me. Help me. Tell me what it is.

Yours Truly

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Life and it's own plans

You harbour dreams, you live a parallel life in your mind - you visualize everything that you've ever, always wanted. You even work towards it - planning, hesitating, preparing and delivering.

But then you realize that life has other plans. Life plays a game with you. What you want, is certainly NOT in life's agenda at that moment, at least. Sometimes, getting your dream come true is so close that it stares you in the eye - and yet the other moment - it's gone - and oops, you missed it by a whisker is what life tells you in return.

Chase your dreams - they say! If you want it, go get it! They scream. And yet when you chase your dreams and plan towards it - Life pulls you away, Drags you away or drags the dreams away. And you feel like that spider who's trying and trying to build his web - despite of falling every single time.

Oh but I must get up - I must not feel disheartened - you tell yourself. Occasionally in the middle of all of it - you wonder if you're just living in an illusion. And yet, sometimes, despite your best efforts, life has taken control. 

If you sit back in silence, shutting down the aggravated mind, may be you will hear the heart speak. May be it will tell you that the reason why what you wish ain't working out - is because you ain't working on what you have to, may be because you're running away from the tough part of it. 

Tackle the tough part - and all your dreams will fall in to place - or so is the new belief that placates me for the moment as I find a new hook/new meaning/ new reason to my living. 

Friday, October 2, 2015

The impossibly possible dream

What you prioritize, reflects in your life. 
So if there are things you rue about, 
Know that they haven't been in focus enough. 
And if there are things you've run behind, but haven't come to you,
Know that it's a signal for something better to happen. 

But it is that dream, that makes you smile every time you go to sleep,
that you mustn't let go. Because it is that dream, when it comes true,
It will make you believe in everything cliche again. Hard work and you. 
Go after it, with all the energy you can muster. 
Yes, you will slow down, in the journey. Yes, you will wander.
But your dream will keep you unhappy, until it turns into a reality.
Your dream will bring you back to the grind, refreshed, recharged, revitalized. 

Know that if you give your sweat and dedication to your dreams,
Nothing is ever impossible to achieve. 
So do it for the thrill of killing the word impossible. 
So do it for the joy of embracing fear as a tool of excel
So do it because you have one precious life.
And in that one precious life, if you haven't achieved an impossible dream,
What have you then ever achieved? 

Monday, September 23, 2013

The next PM of India

Lately a lot has been said and written about the prime ministerial candidate of BJP, Mr. Narendra Modi. I have been one of those countless Indians caught in the pendulum that oscillates between hatred and hope that this man conjures in our hearts. I've read countless articles. Why is he good, why is he bad, why is he scary, why is he the right person to lead India etc etc.
I am all for a fantastic PM for India. I want to vote to ensure this happens. I don't want to be one of those trillions of Indians who sit in one corner brooding 'Iss desh ka kuch nahee hoga' and yet have no solutions to offer. I have seen Ahmedabad transform over the years, since I keep visiting the place every year and have studied there for a good 15 months. Roads across Gujarat cannot be compared to those in Maharashtra. Flawlessly good and pothole free. The BRTS bus system has changed the way the Amdavadis commute. Industrialists who face protests elsewhere always find a plan B in Gujarat knowing fully well that Narendra Modi's government will cut the crap and give them what they want at affordable rates. He has worked tirelessly to win the confidence of the state post the Godhra riots. The only people who unfailingly stand by Mr. Modi apart from the rest, are the people of his own state. Yes, this, even after Godhra riots. Imagine the kind of confidence, turnaround of faith and trust that man commanded. You have to give it to him.
This is one part. But I can't deny there is a certain fear associated with him. That comes with the Hindutva tag attached to him. We Mumbaikars know that fear. The same reason why we have never voted Shiv Sena back to power ever since the 1993 riots, never mind the countless failures of Congress/NCP in our state. It is the fear of causing polarisation of religion. In India, which is an extremely religiously sensitive country, where tolerance is a must for democracy to survive, this fear in many cases forms the cloud that overshadows the rainbow of development. And you know what is extremely surprising and shocking! It's the way people defend Modi. I have been a witness to this. 'Unko chup karane ki zaroorat thi.' 'If they behaved like that, we needed to give it back to them'. 'He's got them under his thumb now. And that's why we are happy.'.. it's not uncommon to hear such casual and seemingly obvious statements from people around. Well, let me put it this way. These are comments by Indians about Indians. And tell me, is Pakistan still a bigger worry for you?
My fear is not just Modi, my fear is this arrogant confidence that he inspires within many.. the confidence of 'He knows how to shut them up.' I am sorry, but that confidence has the potential to tear this nation apart and it scares me to no end. I believe Modi has made no efforts to hide his inching towards Hindutva ideology. There was a phase where I was enjoying hearing him, was admiring him.. all this till he made a statement on Hindutva and someone close to him made a statement on 'rebuilding ayodhya'. That droused all my support for him. Oh and here too there are many people who say 'So what's wrong with Hindutva? It is our origin and this is a Hindu nation'. That's like Raj Thackray saying 'Mumbaikar belongs to Maharashtrians'. Really?? India belongs to all it's citizens.. at least Rabindranath Tagore ensured we embibe that by wording the national anthem in a beautiful way.. And yet... we want to go for Modi.. Hindutva... Ayodhya.. 1990s all over again. Kisine sahee kaha hai. History repeats. All I can say is.. All the best India.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Life's companion

Sometimes you just let go. It is not possible to keep taking charge of life every now and then. And to be frank, life needs to go its own course at times. It's this little kid who'll get cranky if you'll dictate too much of his actions. What matters, is not the fact that you've let your life take its own course for a while, what matters, is how well, you take back it's control when you realize it's straying into territories you want to avoid.

Not always, will hardwork bear fruits, not always will efforts be recognized, not always, are you able to live up to your own expectations, or achieving your own goals. It's one of those times when you do everything right and yet end up wondering what went wrong. It's one of those times when life is testing how long can you walk the path of the right. How long can you keep silent and let your actions do the talking? It's one of those times when you live on the edge. Life goes on like a monotonous movie. Future becomes predictable and not exciting. It's one of those times when you realize your position in this universe. That you are nothing but an insignificant part of it. It's one of those times when you are humbled. Questioned. Shaken.

Life moves ahead, when you take control and steer it on to the path of your destiny. The straying of life is your vacation, your freewheeling holiday, life's holiday as well. But it's important you wake up, take charge and take control before you start blaming anyone else for what's happening to you. Set a few goals that matter, set a few sights that matter, list down things that bother you right now, but shouldn't matter to you because justice, fairness, truth will prevail  at the set of the dawn. Remember, work for what is the best, and the best will come to you effortlessly. The goal should not be about being the best. The goal should be about making the best use of things around you, to make your work, your life the best.

Yes, life is about you. And you can be selfish and think about yourself. But try letting that go, and life will not complain about your control. Because you, will be life's companion. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Left behind..

It's interesting to trace the journey of people coming and  going out of our lives. For some of us, we have childhood friends, who are a part of us. No matter where we are, no matter what we do. They are the ones who matter to us the most and who will stay with us for a lifetime.

And then there are some of us, who walk the journey alone. And there are a few fortunate paths where some extremely interesting people cross our lives. Walk with us for a moment or two. And then go their own ways. Initially it's difficult to see this come and go. And then you start expecting a pattern. You know every traveler in your journey of life, has come to go away. You become skeptical of building bonds. What about the pain when he/she leaves? Even after expecting the outcome, acceptance isn't easier. Sometimes we end up not enjoying that moment of a journey, in anticipation of the parting. It's difficult. To deal with the come and go, the break and make of bonds. Especially when you meet people, whom you know, and you would love to have as company for a lifetime. As friends, as well-wishers, as just about anyone who cares.

But then, you move on. On and  ahead to explore the unexplored territory of life. Who next? What next? How will it go? There's hope, there's optimism and yet there's that 'I know what will happen in the end' belief that somewhere restricts the fun, but also prepares you for the worst. Then on, either life will surprise you, or you will  surprise life, by being graceful in accepting it the way it is, by enjoying the journey, knowing it's meant for you to walk alone, meet people, delight them on the way, let them be, and move on, to delight the next one.
You are fortunate. Aren't you? :)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A thank you note for my bike

'It's for your mom' said Dad, as I clearly remember staring at a white and blue fresh from the showroom Kinetic Honda, outside Dadaji Dhackjee showroom in Worli (of course, now it doesn't exist). This was in 1996. When it was brought to our building, I got a pic clicked standing next to it. It had this fancy, black velvet cover! I was, say a few inches, taller than it was. Hmm. Nice.

Over next few days, the bike became an object of admiration. Self start in the zamaana of kick, especially for my dad who was a Yezdi rider was bliss. Mom started learning it. And then, one day in the process fractured her arm. That's it. The poor Kinetic was rider-less. Unless you count dad, but he was more of a car person. Then, I was barely in 7th standard, but admittedly, quite taller than the rest in the class. (I think ever since then, height hasn't increased). I remember, I had just about learnt to cycle in standard 5. And one fine day, dad plonks me on to the Kinetic (legs, barely, but almost touching the ground), and says 'Chalao'. 'What??' I stared back 'Chalao. Accelerator karo dheere se. Break par haath rakho'. He said unfazed. And then started my journey with the Kinetic. Till I was in about 9th standard, I just enjoyed riding it in my society. Then I was pushed out of it. On to the roads. To get sabzi, to go to places 10 minutes away but which needed rickshaws to commute. I started off. Within years, I got my car and scooter license together. Vrrroooooommm I went. Every saturday I'd be given a to-do list of going across places and paying bills, laundry, groceries etc. I'd set on my ride. And be back, with everything ticked off. There were times, at 4 AM in the morning, when guests at home wouldn't get ricks. The Kinetic would come to the rescue. Why! Even when Dad worked in Thane, it was this Kinetic he took all the distance and survived his travel. I remember a period when dad went to the US for a long time. The Kinetic then rested with my cousin brothers who used it for going to their classes, colleges etc. It then came back, as dad returned. It has been unbelievable 16 years since then. And it amazes me, how the bike is so sturdy and refuses to give up. The body has rusted. White has given away to brown and blue. Almost fallen apart. But when the petrol pump guys fill in petrol, or the mechanic takes it for servicing, they just say one thing. "Madam. Isko bechna mat! Iske jaisa engine aaj ke zamane main nahee milega'. It's still going strong. Needs us to take care of it each month. But then... thank you. For all the literal 'burden' that you've taken on relentlessly! It's unthinkable of the bikes and modern machines of today.