Oct 27, 2009

So whats your favorite Place !

I was watching an old Friends episode the other day. The one where Monika has just broken up with Richard and is so stressed out that she cannot sleep. Phoebe tells her to think of her favorite place in order to relax.
That got me thinking.Each one of us has a favorite place. A safe and peaceful haven where we are always the happiest, where we’d rather be than anywhere else.
Here are my favourite places in no particular order:

Bank of the Ganges – Ganeshpur
Ganeshpur is a small hamlet above Uttarkashi. We discovered this place quite by chance and fell instantly in love with it. The Ganges there is sparkling clean, unblemished by the pollution it faces in the bigger towns like Haridwar. At Ganeshpur it’s very fast flowing and turbulent and going inside the river is impossible. But the bank has many comfortable boulders to sit on; you can see the snow clad mountains in the distance and the river meandering down from them. The nearest village is miles away and the only sound is that of the river. Whenever my mind is in turmoil, all I have to do is close my eyes think of this place. Instantly my mind becomes calm.

My Apartment in Kobe
I lived in Kobe for a little more than a year. My apartment there was rather small, barely big enough for me. But I never wanted to change it because of the spectacular view it offered. It was a corner apt, on the 11th floor and the balcony ran on three sides. From two of the balconies one could clearly see the hills – lush green in summer and monsoons, a medley of colors in autumn– rust, orange, red, yellow. In winter the branches of the trees would be laden with snow and the sun glittering of them would make a wonderful sight. The view was breath taking in all seasons. From the third balcony I could see the sea, shimmering away in the distance. I could see the view outside from my desk, from the kitchen and even from my bed. That was the best part. Wherever I was in that small apartment, I just had to lift my head to see the sea or the hills! Unfortunately I will never go back to that apartment again but I still count it among my favorite places !

Our house in Chandigarh
It’s spacious and has huge floor to almost ceiling windows that make the house sunny and warm in winter and let the cool breeze in during summers. Bright sunshiny rooms, Soft billowing curtains, sofas with cushions in pastel shades, paintings made by my aunt on the walls, flowers and potted plants everywhere; this house is a haven I must turn to at least once a month.

Starbucks Cafe in kobe
Kobe memories again ! If ever there was a fan of Starbucks coffee its me!. Tucked in a corner away from the hustle bustle of the main street, this particular starbucks was one of my favorite haunts. I would go there with my laptop or a book, sink into their soft cushiony sofas, tuck my legs under me, think, read, write or simply observe life passing by as I sipped on the delicious brew. It was large enough so that I could always find a peaceful corner at any time of the day. The staff was always courteous and never bothered me even when I spent hours there. I have been to so many starbucks since but I so miss that one!

So whats your favorite place :-)

Oct 13, 2009

Writer's Block !

Why is it that an idea for a blog post always strikes me when I have no access to a laptop or paper. Like when I am driving or travelling. I half form the blog post in my mind; witty catchy sentences and phrases swirl around in my head and I am dying to jot them down. But Once I am in front of my laptop – nothing ! My mind goes blank and I am really at a loss on how to put down my thoughts. The words don’t come and the sentences that sounded witty and brilliant in my head look drab and boring on my computer screen. Now what kind of Writer's Block is that !

Ever happened to any of you?

Oct 8, 2009

The travails of a Cab User

The long suffering Lumbar muscles finally collapsed thanks to Delhi's treacherous roads and after having a look at the groaning shuffling me the doctor asked me to stop driving altogether if I wanted to salvage what was left of my back. And so it was with great regret that I handed over the car keys to my parents and resigned myself to using the office cab. And using the cab dear readers is not that simple. One would think that just instructing the driver about the pick up point and writing official mails on the subject should be enough. Well not really.
Day 1- Morning.
I am at the designated pick up point and have been waiting there for a good 15 minutes. My phone rings.
Cabby – Madam aap kaha hai?
Me- xyz jagah ke saamne. cab ka wait kar rahi hoon
Cabby – madam aap main road pe aa jaao na. Main kab se waha khada hoon.
(Main rd is a good 10 minutes walk)
Me – Kyun bhaiya? Aapko to main rd se andar ana than na. Maine bataya tha phone pe.
Cabby – madam main bhool gaya.
Me – toh ab aa jao
Cabby –Aap main road pe aa jao
Me – mujhe main road tak walk karne mein 10 minute lagenge aur aapko 2-3 min.
Cabby- madam reverse karke back lena padega na.
Me – (very sarcastically) Kyun bhaiya reverse gear kharab hai kya ?
Finally he arrives and we start off – a good half hour late.Other users of the cab are not amused at being kept waiting at their respective stops for so long. The new joinee in the cab (me!) does not exactly get a very heart warming welcome.
Day 1 Evening
After a hard days slog everyone is waiting to just sit back in the cab and sleep all the way home. The cab starts, the AC does not. Apparently the AC is not working and there is no other cab available. So we endure a 2 hour journey by the end of which we all know what a tandoori chicken feels like.
Day 2
I am picked up on time and so is everyone else. The cab today is a rickety old vehicle but as long as it’s on time and the AC is working no one is complaining. Good spirits prevail. But at the Ashram red light, the engine coughs and sputters and then promptly dies on us. The driver makes valiant efforts to revive the engine as we wait with bated breath. Finally he gives up, gets down cursing, opens the bonnet and starts fiddling inside.
An auto stops at the red light and the sight of four people sitting in the cab while the driver is tinkering and banging about the engine is too much for the curious auto driver.
"Kya hua madam?" – he asks an already harried occupant of the cab. "Kya gadi kharaab ho gayi?".
"Nahi bhaiya hamein beech sadak mein gaadi rokna accha lagta hai" she replies.
Apparently the sarcasm is lost on him because he then proceeds to ask our driver the same question. Then they both have a very animated discussion and the auto guy brings forth a tool from his auto and our man proceeds to bang about the engine with it and curse some more.

Finally we call office and are told a replacement cab is on the way. The cab reaches us after an hour and by that time we are too tired and wilted to care about anything.
Tomorrow – Day 3.
Wish me luck !

Oct 7, 2009

55 Fiction - Melacholy

Tumbled thoughts in a jumbled mind. Everything topsy turvey inside my head. Despondency and listlessness, sadness for things that could not be, remembering lost dreams that have slipped away like sand through fingers. They say that Night is always darkest just before dawn. But hasn’t this night already lasted too long?

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