Somewhere

I was in the middle of nowhere, trying to find who i am, in the midst of the haze. I don’t remember what it was, smoke or clouds? But i heard birds chirping, calling me and dancing butterflies trying to tell me you are one of us, free yourself and enjoy in this nowhere of yours. I was so much into those voices that i could barely think. There was also a fragrance coming with the breeze. I felt, it reminded me of some flowers which were there in my garden during my childhood days or maybe it was some sweetened scent of honeycomb mixed with spices of those woods. I  was no longer able to concentrate to take a decision. I was so far from everything yet right in the middle of something.
I have always found myself lost at many situations of life, like when i am deeply thinking about something or maybe lost in some thought which i vaguely remember later. But this was the moment i enjoyed for being no one or to pretend to be someone. This was my favorite moment. I felt empty. My soul was able to connect with the nature, the smell of mud, sound of winds and welcoming postures of the eucalyptus trees waving towards me. I think those trees were pristine but the way it was letting their branches feel free it looked like clean and fresh as if they are new to this world. I was standing still or maybe i was moving forward, i wasn’t sure about that. All i noticed was clouds above me were in a hurry to go somewhere. I don’t know if they were really going somewhere or they were just nomads. Even i wanted to be a nomad, i wanted to break all the barriers and fly freely like they do. I wasn’t sure if i was jealous of them.
I met someone in those woods. I am not sure who it was, a human or an animal or a bird but i was so sure that i connected myself with the creature. First i thought it was a waff but it could have been the other way round too. Although that creature welcomed me with eye contact, the fact we were both so disconnected from the life or  the real world, was enough for us to meet and feel connected. I stopped in my tracks and looked back. Where was I? This question suddenly made me so insecure about myself that i blanked out and neglected my friend-to-be. My friend-to-be thought i am some terrifying person and went somewhere.
Then this question started haunting in my mind. What is real world? Where i was pretending to be someone or this moment where i am no one but still feel the sense of being myself. I knew i will never get this answer and decided to go back to the place i came from. Gradually all those resonance of birds and woods faded out and a familiar voice hit my ears. I was in the middle of a national highway standing in the way of many vehicles. I was not welcomed back.

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Who is she?

She was 23. She used to stare herself hours and hours in front of the mirror. She was beautiful both inside and out. Always wanted to be independent, her aim was to become a teacher, educate kids make them pragmatic and prudent. She had her aims. She had visions. She had beautiful plans for her future where she never imagined herself as lonely or contingent on someone. Her thoughts were unpredictable so was her life.

It was an arranged marriage. She was not ready but never went against her parents. She rearranged herself in a new city, with strangers, unfamiliar family and new sets of restrictions. She became no one. Suddenly she was forced to accept cooking, cleaning and celebration as her new hobbies. Time became her driver and responsibilities her moderator. She wasn’t young anymore. With time, she became pregnant. She lost all her beauty giving birth to a beautiful daugther. She wasn’t sure if everyone was happy around her. Later she gave birth to a son. She raised her children the way she wanted to educate by teaching. All of a sudden she was living her aim. She was a teacher, a mould giving shapes and a lover. Years passed and when she noticed herself in mirror again she was aging. Age was just a number, she felt beautiful whenever she looked at her daughter. She was proud at the upbringing of her son. Her love was selfless. Now she actually accepted cooking as her hobby and make delicious food just to make her children happy. Her children turned adults. It was the moment when they became selfish and left her for their future enhancement. She cried but no one heard it. She was still happy but lonely this time. She is still there, praying for them, waiting for their call, loving them, still sacrificing and being altruisitc. She is now flipping old albums somewhere in this world. She is a philanthropist. She is your Mother.

The Wait

“You know what, I have a crush on Randeep Hooda”, Lata screamed like a 25year something old. Every time she watches Randeep Hooda on TV screen she blushes. Not only she is attracted to men who boast matured look, she falls in love with every character in those books she read. Reading book is her favorite thing to do and fantasizing herself as the female protagonist of the story not only made her emotional but full of life and fun. Lata is a happy go lucky lady. Unlike her behavior she is 43 years old, dealing with her menopause days. She has been married since 20 years and a mother of a 16 year girl. 20 years back when she was getting married, she was very excited for her new beginning, that love which she read in books and romance. Even today she longs for it. Her husband Pankaj is a busy person. He loves Lata and he promised to give her all the luxuries and comfort. Today he has achieved himself to a position where he pampers Lata with loads of gifts and even deposits lacs of money in her account for her shopping and spa services. Still she feels lonely. Her teenage daughter, Shreya understands her to an extent but being a mother, Shreya thinks even my mom has superpowers. Lata is a school teacher. Inspite of her husband forcing her to quit job because he is a VP of a multinational company and Lata’s salary is one-tenth of his salary. Lata tries to convince him every night telling him it’s the only thing which gives her pleasure. Pankaj asks what else will give you happiness. Lata immediately says, “Your time. I want to spend time with you.” She always imagines her father and mother sitting in their garden in the evening and sipping tea. She wanted the same life. Now that she understood that, everything can be bought with money but not time. They say time is the greatest healer, but in her case time keeps on giving her wounds. She notices the behavior of her daughter which reminds of her teenage days. She doesn’t want her daughter to become like her. Shreya sometimes ask Lata, why her dad is so busy? Why can’t he come for shopping with them? All Lata answer is, he is planning to gift you Mini Cooper on your 18th birthday so busy in those preparations. Lata knew, her daughter is not justified. Shreya knew, her mother is lying and Pankaj knew Lata must be lying just to take his side.

It was the 20th anniversary of Lata and Pankaj. Pankaj planned a day out followed by a dinner for Lata and Shreya. The day well spent. Reaching back home Shreya said, “Dad! Stay like this forever. Good night”. Pankaj understood what his daughter wanted to convey but he was too speechless to react. Lata was all prepared for sleep. Pankaj want to give justification. He wanted to scream for what he is hidden. He wanted to share his feelings. Finally he burst it out, “Lata! The day I married you, I want to give you everything. I worked hard to earn money. With time I realized I am trapped in my job. I was performing and my company was giving me more money and responsibilities. I was happy for the promotions I was getting but money was taking away all the time which I should have spent with you. We get paid for taking stress in our life. More stress higher the salary. I dint understood. I lost my family. I want to live it now. Support me”. Lata gently touched his head and both slept peacefully that night.

Sun is up again. Shreya left for her school. Lata made Pankaj’s favorite breakfast and took her day off from school. Pankaj came dressed in formals in the living area and said delegates are coming will have breakfast with them only. Avoiding that eye contact, he left Lata to her own.

Dreaming a reality

Shruti is a chirpy girl. She finds happiness everywhere. Laughing is her religion and shopping is her therapy. She works with a big brand, stay alone in Gurgaon and drive down to Delhi everyday for her job. She has everything in her life except her soulmate. She has a bitter past. It saddens her but she manages to smile and say, it was a setback life moves on… She was the domestic violence victim. It was a big fat Indian wedding. She looked her best that day. She married the guy whom she met only once. Dreamt of making paradise with him, all she got was hell in reality. She is strong, educated and dignified girl. She opposed it and filed the divorce within a year of marriage. Claiming that it was an experience to make her more strong, she sips her favorite ginger tea and smile for all the stunt she did to come out of it. Now after 3 years, she has fallen in love. Its a guy working in her previous office. She wants to live with him till she grow old. Somehow she felt even the guy is attracted towards her. His presence used to make her uncomfortable. She wanted to touch him and tell him how deep is her feeling. Love is a special feeling, it gets strong when you realise the difficulties involve with it.
It was an after office party. Shruti dressed her best so that Nikunj notice her. Nikunj entered the place with his girlfriend. Nikunj is dating Samantha since 8 years. Besides religious differences they both are planning to get married. Shruti faced the reality again. Nikunj had a guilt in his eyes. Somewhere he knew he did the wrong thing by bringing Samantha. Nikunj is a committed guy. Unlike Shruti he is a shy person, doesn’t share his feelings openly and thinks commitment is beyond feelings. Nikunj was avoiding eye contact with Shruti. Shruti took the initiative and met his girlfriend like other office colleagues. She made him feel comfortable by teasing him with same old office jokes. She was shattered. She was blaming herself for loving a wrong person. She knew Nikunj belongs to someone else.
Life became more tough after that. Not able to deal him everyday in office she decided to quit the job and join some other company. Nikunj knew she was going. Office friends told Nikunj that Shruti likes him. He maintained his silence…
2 months passed by, Shruti was not able to take Nikunj out of her mind. She open her chat everytime, see his pic and close it. One day her old office friend threw a party, she met Nikunj again with his girlfriend. She noticed Samantha was bossy on him and respect was lagging in their relationship. She dramatized the situation after a no reason tiff with Nikunj in front of Shruti and other friends. Shruti felt more strongly for Nikunj. Post that incident, another month passed and Shruti decided to share her feelings with him.
It was Arpita, Shruti’s flatmate and Nikunj’s colleague who told him that Shruti loves him and even changed the job for his sake. Nikunj called Shruti to say he felt bad to know that she left her job for him. Shruti told her feelings to him and even mentioned her past. Shruti is a practical girl. She knew there would be no hope even if Nikunj feel for her. She told him that she doesn’t want him to leave Samantha. Nikunj admires Shruti. He is flattered that someone has a feeling for him so deep. Nikunj know it is not easy to accept his feelings and her love. Shruti has a past. How will his parents react to it? In our country, bachelors cant marry a divorce person. Society will deny it. Nikunj know the consequences. What will he answer to Samantha whom he is going to marry? Ocean of questions and probabilities are floating in their minds.
Till today Shruti know Nikunj is ignoring her despite of a feeling he has for her. They don’t talk to each other. They remember each other daily, check the pictures and ask about each other’s well being from Arpita. In the world having so much of technologies to connect with… living in the same city Shruti and Nikunj are pretending strangers but their souls getting connected everytime they think of each other. With the hope of someday miracle will happen in their lives, they call their day off and dream of being together forever.

The Fault in our genders

Although I was born and brought up in a small city of Uttar Pradesh, no one taught me to distinguish between a male and a female; No one told me what sexual harassment is, infact no one said you are a weak gender and compromise on the way you dress up and stuff. I was given a scooty to fly around my small city; never ever my parents restricted me to anything. Not only me but all my school friends commute with their vehicle and we enjoyed our freedom so much and never scared of anyone. I grew up to be a bold person.

…And then I faced a new world. Where Men hate women, girls were not safe, eve teasing was a daily chore, thinking if I am dressed properly so that I feel safe standing in front of mirror for about half an hour before leaving my hostel. This was no more a small city but a metropolitan place which once I used to watch on TV where girls roam around freely, stays alone and feels independent. I never experienced any of these. I lost my innocence and I grew up.

With time I joined job. I saw professional people. In reality there were not professional. I even got harassed at my work place by my boss. I was too novel to know if that was wrong. I was in need of job. I felt awkward and finally decided to share it with my office friends. My colleagues (esp. males) told me to maintain distance with such bosses. I grew up.

Then many other instances happen in my life, which I saw experienced, some faced bravely but some I ignored. It was my fault to ignore it. I knew I am a contractive person. Every time I heard stories about men-women complications, I grew up.

Something happened with me on Sunday which made me to write this. I was going somewhere with my husband on a bike. I was dressed properly (Jeans and t-shirt) with all the reality checks I do before leaving home, wrapped my stole on my head to cover my hairs and wore my shades to protect my eyes. But soon we enter a crowded signal we realized many people; both men and women were staring at me. I felt conscious and asked him to stop the bike, just to see if my clothes got torn from somewhere. No! it was not. We started again and again person of mid 40’s try to bring his bike near me, staring and smirking. My husband said maybe it’s some problem with the bike or my way of riding it. But somehow I knew, it’s not the problem with the bike or the way he was riding. It was the fault of our genders. I replied him back- “No! I think it’s the problem of me being a girl”. With that I GREW UP AGAIN.

Literacy vs Education

What differentiate you to be called as an educated person not just literate? Humans often muddle literate as being educated. But my view is being educated doesn’t mean you need to be literate and vice-versa. During my schooling, there was a subject called Moral Science which taught us to become good and responsible human beings. We read that book, listened to the teacher, mugged up the topics, wrote in exams, got good numbers and erased it from the memory. Even I did the same but with time when I became independent, responsible and mature, I realized Moral education was not for mugging up but it is something which has to be applied in our lives to make world a better place to live.

It all started with my obsession of traveling and exploring new places. I went roaming in my country and realized that Garbage is a national issue. People live in sky scraper buildings, earn lakhs of money, make their house clean early in the morning but throw garbage wherever they feel like. Have seen literate white collar job people carrying black plastic bins in their car, stop at the side of the road, throw that garbage and move on. Later those garbage bins get removed by the illiterate person who keep cleaning the roads to make the city clean. So who is educated here?

Being educated also means how much you follow rules and regulations? Yeah! We say rules are made to be broken. But Traffic rules and moral rules ARE NOT! SERIOUSLY! Honking when you know there is a hospital nearby or over speeding your vehicle doesn’t make you look cool. Breaking red lights and even honking madly on a red light with an abuse makes you look uneducated even your Ray-ban shades mock on your face.

It is just not garbage or rules and regulations, there are many other ways we are doing to make our surrounding worse. What is the use of that degree you earned? Ohh yes! It makes you get salary. But money doesn’t make you an educated person. Right? Parking in no parking, walking still when you see ‘Caution! Wet floor ahead’, peeing on the roadside, Spitting down sitting in a bus without caring who is standing beside it, not flushing in public toilets, etc. the list is endless here. Time to remember your moral education now.

Not just limited to these, abusing even when you are wrong at your part makes you look like a dimwit. What’s the use of debating over tea that our country is not a better place to live? Are you using your moral education to make it a better place? Or are you the one who just crib about it and then you do the same because everyone else is doing? High time, change is required. Call me a moral preacher, yes I am if it makes my society a better place to live.

Can go through the series of my tweets on this topic through below link-

#LiteracyVsEducation

Illiterate person is someone who cant read what is written. Uneducated person is the one who ignore wat is written & parks car in No Parking

 

 

 

 

 

Searching happiness… not found!

So what if I am doing great in my job or trying to be happy in my personal life. No I don’t like bragging about it on Social Media. Neither have I liked telling my achievements to my relatives nor to those friends who are trying their best to behave like a foe. But what if I share it because I am overwhelmed? I know the consequences but yes! I am also a human.

Jealousy, curse, disparage are the reactions we have to deal with if we share the happiness. “Ohh! So what did you do to get that job?”, “I deserved better than you anytime”, “I know you since long, you don’t have the talent”, “How can you change and become so smart?” These are the few reactions we get from them. So much distrust about other person makes them happy.

This is not the limit. I have seen few people stalking the profiles of their friends, cousins, colleagues, etc. They know so much about them, even that person who is getting stalked is not aware of. Even I have been victimized of being stalked. I don’t interact much with everyone reason; yes I am insecure about my happiness. I am jinxed that if I share this it will fade away from my life because in India we believe evil’s eye.

Gone are the days when we shared our travel pics album to our friends and family and they actually felt happy seeing our happiest capture. Now we post pics on Facebook and Instagram or maybe on Whatsapp. Personally, I have seen people reply on our posts and pics in a very sarcastic and jealous way. It is not limited to the jealousy and sarcasm; some people actually visit the place because they don’t want to be lagged behind from their friends or relatives and then prove that- “Dude! I explored this place more than you did”.

Crux of the matter is that we in the world of technology, constantly look out for happiness and satisfaction but we just cannot tolerate the fact that the other person is happier than us. This leads to the comparison of lives and wherever a state of equivalence happens you can’t feel contented.