Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Downhill and how!


See those folks right on top? I was there. See the women sitting on top of the tiny fall? I was there too.. The mid stretch of my 11 mile hike.. i was so scared of getting down this tiny cliff. Managed it and I am standing. :)



The fall looks really pretty.. :) And my new phone has a brilliant camera. Shot on Iphone 7. 

Jonathan Livingstone Seagull

The first time I read this book, I really loved it. I liked it as much the second time I read it. I keep thinking Laika is like Jonathan as she constantly wants to fly.

Imagine my surprise when I accidentally caught a sea gull mid flight, near the lighthouse in Point Reyes.


I love the shades of blue...

Cypress Grove

This place was on the way to Point Reyes. A grove of Cypress more like a cave if you ask me. It was a beautiful and serene place..


I loved the place because from a certain angle, it looks like there is light at the end of the tunnel.. :)
(Its a different argument that the tunnel itself is only a perspective.)  

Monday, August 14, 2017

One step at a time

I did a 11 mile hike and survived!! (Relatively speaking) I used to be called an immovable asset at school. As an adult, I am really evolving and trying to be fitter. A pat on my back for doing this and being fit enough to get to work the next day.

View on the route to the waterfall:



View from a different angle on the way back..

This was the Pelican lake. There was also a Bass lake:

View when we started the trek:




View on the way back

All the pictures were shot on an Iphone! Love the camera. 

Flights of fancy

Somewhere between a rocky mountain 
And a steep fall I sit, 
Pausing to breath,
And doing nothing beyond -
Contemplating the flight of the birds 
I've yet to find my wings, 
For I seem to love nets that just hold me so close..
Willingly I get entangled, and then pray for a deliverance.
That would just not be. 

These moments, I just cut loose, 
And try to take flight,
Surprising myself, by
Joining the birds mid-flight. 
Scaring them perhaps, 
For a hefty companion they expected not.

But they hold me close nevertheless 
And we take flight 
I gladly forget the paths that diverged, then 
For a new mode came by to move me forward. 

P.S - Inspired by a crazy hike down and my fear of climbing down or up. 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Endless, nameless


The waves, how do they identify themselves? I mean, you can make out almost where one ends and where the other begins, but you also cannot. If they could think, what would they opine about being an endless, nameless entity? Or would they secretly laugh as they have named themselves in a code meant just for themselves and ones which others will never have access to? Ones others can perhaps even hear, but cannot distinguish enough to comprehend?

Location - Point Reyes (Over thinking after climbing down and then back up an equivalent of 30 flights of stairs)

Saturday, August 12, 2017

The picture of you

I walk through empty lanes 
Ones that come alive 
With images of you and me, 
Together, pretty much in love, 
Hopelessly lost. 

I know now, that I was lost 
A part of me probably still is..
But most of me,
Is whole and aware of the illusion that was..

Enjoying the view, 
I walk by,
The image of you clear. 

How I wish you were as real as your image was! 
I know why I'm no Pygmalion..
My vision of a human, 
Is nothing but that of a skeleton with a layer of flesh..
Real but unreal. 

I sit down and try to define all that should be, 
Never really knowing that all that could be, 
Is always beyond the realm of imagination..
--
Harini Padmanabhan

Is Optimism a luxury?

I just read a summary of Candide, a work by Voltaire, where he criticizes Leibniz and Optimism.

Before I go ahead, I should add a fair warning - I think of myself as a hard core optimist. I cannot be held down and I also take the "Whatever happens, happens for a reason" (Was that Aristotle who was first documented to have said this? I dont remember) to a different level.

I now wonder, is that a line meant for those who are actually blessed? Like it is not a positive positive sentence, but more something that you say when you are too selfish to acknowledge the blessings you already have? (iphone6 broke, everything happens for a reason, there is 7+ waiting for you, lost a job, there is an offer which is even better..)

I mean think about it, you can hardly say that when something really unspeakable (like murder of a loved one, rape, poverty that you cannot even buy the next meal, natural disaster etc) happens to you. You can only say these things when you can speak about an adversity and after you overcome it. When you are going through something, can you really say this?

After reading the extract of the book, this is what is running through my head. In a way, it makes me more thankful for everything I have and have been able to afford without thinking twice.  It also makes me wonder, how can there be hope for those that truly have none? 

Louvre - Part 1

I  dont know how many posts I am going to post on the Louvre. The place I will definitely revisit and make another trip to Paris for.

The glass pyramid, the one I got to know about when reading Da Vinci Code.

A few statues, right outside the Louvre, but often ignored I am sure. Or perhaps not, as the queue to get in is quite long and there might be others outside as interested as me.



One in the front, calling out my obsession with gold. Probably from the sun king.

Louis XVI - Was he the villain that he was portrayed to be? There are some who say he was not - like this article. But then what was the point anyway? If you are ok inheriting prosperity, then maybe it is only fair that you inherit adversity too. Perhaps if you are the one inheriting the latter, you might not see the fairness in the argument.

View from the top

I somehow cannot get over the pictures I took from the top of the Eiffel tower. A few more..





Sunday, August 06, 2017

Relationships

I'm waiting at the Changi airport after an unexpected weekend in Singapore. One more country out of my to do list. Given everything that's happening I just packed my bags and came here. I spent the last three days meeting a few friends. I have nothing more to say than that I'm very lucky and blessed to be able to count on such people to be my friends.

A friend once told me that the only friends you make are at school. But quite a few of my best friends were made at work. Probably cos I'm a late bloomer. 

When all goes to hell, it is a good thing, cos that's only when you know which relationships you've nurtured are even genuine. :) 

Thank you God. For everything. 

Friday, August 04, 2017

Pearls

The slow music, lulls me not into sleep
It wakes me up instead,
I watch them with envy,
Those able to nod off,
To this song, Our song,
The one I choreographed,
A million times in my head.

That ethereal evening,
With an almost setting sun,
And you by my side
Windows down, singing off key,
Always off key,
Still divine to my usually critical ears.

I remember the dark green
I remember the white stripes
The crazy shoes
I forget not..

I remember the smile
And the ridiculous laughter
Easily mistaken for a Hyena's mating call.

The eternal picture,
Caught in my brain
Frozen..

The sun did set
Not just that day,
Every day after that..
But you remain framed
Like that annoying, forgotten 
yet unforgettable tune.

Perhaps, you're the cause
The one that got away,
The one I'm glad disappeared
And the one I miss on random Thursday nights
In empty airport lounges..

Perhaps, You're the inspiration,
for the Pearl I might spit out,
Someday..

The oyster dies, I hear your voice whisper.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Into the light


I am fascinated by sunsets and if I carry my phone on my evening walk, I always take a picture of the lake and the sun. Today, i saw this small fishing boat right in the light and I couldn't resist capturing it. The sun rays remind of the picture i used to draw as a kid to represent the sun - A circle with straight lines radiating out from it. At least one half of the image, probably like the sketch of the sun setting between mountains. What will that little girl think of me if she saw me now? (I am sure she is going to disapprove of my shorts. I started wearing them only a couple of years back. She is also probably going to wonder why I have dogs and why I have not conquered the world yet or become a famous author. Sigh, Have to figure out a lot of things in life)

I see a lot of people fishing in this lake and my favorite bird, Mr.Garudan also does it. (I saw the bird swoop in, pick up a fish in its leg and fly off). I hope these boats leave enough for birds. 

Revisiting Childhood

I am rereading all of Tintin (I couldn't make time to finish my Pratchett marathon - Ok, I am not lying, I am too distracted to read Pratchett).

I love the series for despite the predictability, there is a sense of adventure that seeps through. As a dog person, I am so jealous of Tintin getting to do everything with Snowy (Even deep sea diving) and I can relate to the loyalty that Tintin is lucky enough to experience. I imagine Zoya to be another Snowy (especially when she gets to see food, she is another dog altogether)

Herge pokes fun of so many societal flaws and effortlessly makes it part of the plot.

I have started collecting tiny figurines of comic characters and though I have quite a few of characters from Tintin (Tintin keychain, Snowy with his head stuck inside a crab can, Captain Haddock, Tintin with Snowy), I am missing a few that I hope to add to my collection soon.


Above, my really crowded office desk (Someone broke that beautiful plant and I have killed a couple during my Paris trip.. :()

You cannot see the Tintin keychain, it is hanging in the side and the photos are held in place by a couple of Tintin badges too (Both badges coincidentally from Red Rackhams treasure - Snowy resting after swallowing a chicken and Tintin looking at Captain Haddock inside a deep sea suit)

As I read these books, I see a few of these images in the book and they become far more valuable to me. Tintin is a hero only because he has such an awesome supporting cast. Maybe, I am a little too old for Tintin, but I love this morning ritual.

I might not remember the details like some of my friends do, but I enjoy these books a lot. I got the collection 7 years ago and I am still thankful to flipkart for their huge discount. 

Aadathu Asangathu

I have always been a fan of music that has beautiful lyrics. My fascination with Carnatic music as an adult (After skipping classes as a teen) was also because I fell in love with the devotion and the beauty of the lyrics. I usually read up the meaning of the lyrics when it is in a different language (usually telugu)

Today, I was practicing Aadathu Asangathu Vaa Kanna, listening to Sudha Raghunathan today. I could see the scene unfolding in front of my eyes. Especially the line below, which talks about the peacock, traditionally the vehicle of Murugan, the 12 handed God, starting to dance along.

Panniru (12) kai (handed) iraivan (god)
Erum mayil onru (a peacock he mounts) than pasum thogai (its green feathers) virithaadi (opens up and dances)
Parishalithidume (will reward you)

I was so glad I knew Tamil well when i listened to these lines. What a source of joy literature and music can be. A song written in the 1700s, I connected to it today. Thank you God, for this and more. 

One that got away



Dedicated to the one that got away. Probably I am listening to her too late, but I like some of her songs..