Today we saw hail. Our sweet Bangalore with its usual gentle showers decided to go all violent when we were driving around one of its forgotten roads. We were hit by hail stones. The twang on the car roof and the bullet shots on our face through the windows made it super scary. Nature has strange ways of reminding us that she's the boss. So many fallen trees, syntex tanks and even chairs that were flying around. As i like to think, we are way too tiny in the scale of things.
Sunday, May 31, 2015
We have a practice. We hunt for discounted book shops in vacation spots. We spend at least an hour in them searching for authors and titles. There is inevitably a shop selling books at a discount and the book collectors in us cannot stop ourselves from buying, reading and keeping the book as a memento.
I've picked up completely random titles and gotten lost in it. And always wondered how a piece of the author always survives. How did I in a tiny place in india pick up a book published in Germany and later translated to English? Some tourist must have gotten it along as a vacation read and left it behind. I have bought some difficult to get books as well in such tiny shops.
There is a strange camaraderie between me and the previous owner who left the book behind for me. I never sell my books or leave them behind. They're a part of me. Perhaps leaving it in a holiday spot is not a bad idea. Somebody will get to enjoy it. Somebody will wonder who I am. And I can wonder who picked my special book and revisit my destination. Its got such a wonderful ring to it.
Its unbelievable but true... We spotted a dolphin in Goa !! It was a quick glimpse and we were too delighted to even click a pic. But we did it!!!!! The rocky boat ride was so worth it.. Symbolic that you have to cross the aguada jail to go see dolphins. Such a beautiful view for the men who can never truly enjoy freedom.
This is not a movie review. This is just a tag line for how I felt the last week. We went to Goa from kodai and I was so happy and delighted with life in general. We did so many things we usually do not. Parasailing for one and even a speed boat ride. The icing on the cake, the drive around Goa in a two wheeler. We did 180km in three days. So lovely. I can never do that in the crazy Bangalore traffic. It was divine. I felt so alive.
My laptop came along with me but was ignored completely. That explains my absence from the blogging world. There were a lot of mails once I was back, but the week without any device was so relaxing.
I caught up on reading and spent a lot of time finishing wonderful books sitting on a sun chair in a huge balcony. Timelessness and the feeling of not having anywhere to go was so wonderful.
I wonder why every day of life is not like this. I have to figure out a way to take life one day at a time. Its going to be difficult but I have to try.
The first stop in our long vacation was in kodai. We stayed in dune elephant valley resort. First thing we went at the peak of summer. So it was hotter than Bangalore. Second the place is away from kodai and the route is very difficult to take. But once you reach the place, its lovely. The rooms are aesthetically done and the whole place looks beautiful. It is very serene also. We had gotten cake to celebrate a birthday there so we did not eat food over there. The bread from the bakery and all the fruits I ate were filling me up.
The staff were friendly and they even got us plates to distribute the cake to the rest of the visitors. Night was a little scary as there were some noises outside our room. We later realized it was a stray pony wandering around.
The best part of the stay was the trek to the origin of a waterfall. It was pleasant and made me feel very alive and energetic.
We felt closer to each other and one with the world around us. We checked out happy and hoped to come back next time when it will not be so hot and with our dogs for a longer stay.
Ever wondered how a beginning can also be an end? Well, that was what was running in my head as we finished our trek in the elephant valley. We stayed in dune elephant valley in kodai for two days. More about the place later. While we were there, we went on an early morning trek to the origin of a waterfall.
It was such a scenic walk and we waded through streams looking for elephant and bison tracks.
The chirping of birds and a very pleasant air kept us company through our walk. The early rays of the sun gave us enough light without burning us out. We trekked through to the very end. There we bent down to watch the waterfall crash into the rocks below. A very steep drop. While we were admiring it, our guide pointed to a diversion created in the stream before the drop. He said those sand bags have been put in place to prevent the water from rushing through so rescue workers can try to retrieve the body of a 20 year old who had died the previous day. While trying to pose for a picture he had moved too close to the tip and just fallen down. Without a hold, he disappeared in seconds.
I wonder if they found his body. The beginning of something led to the end of something else. The folly of youth to feel so invincible. To think more of the pose than of the thing being photographed. To underestimate nature. I feel sorry for the boy.
My much anticipated vacation came and went. The very first thing that went wrong was our pet sitter falling ill. We had to take the jokers along to Madurai, leave them with my dad and proceed to kodai.
My dad has graduated from a dog hater to a pet sitter and he took care of these guys for two days!! I think they were in some kind of doggy heaven because they looked so happy when we came back. It was the open air and the complete leash free existence. How I wish I could buy a house with a huge yard and just let them loose.. Some day soon..
It looks like wherever we go, there is a welcome party. In Goa, we went to a beach and there this guy looking so extraordinarily like zoya was sleeping in the exact same pose. He woke up to give me one look and then went back to sleep. Is it that I've started noticing these things now or do my dogs have a way of reminding me if them wherever I go?
Look at those white paws and that posture. Unbelievably eerie.
I was walking along an empty sinquerim bench on a beautiful evening. The waves, the wind, the solitary lady whispering sweet nothings on her phone and the two doggies playing with each other near the waves. It felt like a piece of heaven I had mistakenly walked into. My glimpse of paradise. I looked down to check if my feet were grounded and saw the footprints I had left behind.
Life is like the sea shore. You can walk as proudly as you want leaving huge deep marks for the rest to follow but when the tide comes by your footsteps will disappear. It doesn't matter who you are. Or what you did. Sooner or later it happens. Perhaps we just have to do what we want to do and forget about the footprints. They are meant to disappear anyway. This breath of fresh air and the salty taste it leaves behind in my mouth are irreplaceable.
I was sitting next to the beach, sipping a hot cup of tea while watching the waves and wondering what I do living so far from the waves. I looked up to ponder and saw the coconut trees questioning me. They swayed, the movement gentle and violent at the same time similar to the emotions I was going through. Peace and anger at it being temporary. A snap to remind me of my goan evening. The winds of change are here. I feel them.
Monday, May 18, 2015
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Obsessing over my job, falling in love with new equations and new techniques, was not strange ever. (It is still is not to me). We did travel on weekends and even otherwise for a week or two, but I always carried my laptop around (it is just me. Not something that was imposed on me. So dont go about saying that some companies drive you crazy. People do it to themselves). Not checking my mail and not working was like being handicapped.
The fact that I took off in the middle of the week to attend a wedding last week (I was still working from the hotel room after the wedding, but that doesnt count) makes me feel that evolution is here to stay.
Monday, May 11, 2015
Today, we planted a badam tree ( she did all the work, I was still weeding) and it was actually fun
Friday, May 08, 2015
The broad roads, the clean air and more than anything, the food and the people. The food was unbelievably good and cheap.Everyone was bustling around but they had time to pause and chat. Market places had crowds on a weekday and the shop keepers were so courteous and willing to please.