Remembering moments, what I wished for then!


                                                                  Photo by Valentin Petkov on Unsplash

As I sat to write in my journal like any other day, to relive the moments, experiences — the events, the vacation I took recently & all the other day to day things I lived through, I had an epiphany. A sense of realization — I am recording the moments, remembering them, what I wished for then

Undoubtedly our lives have infinite possibilities, the past just one. Maybe that is why we still hold on to the past, we refuse to change our ways, our thoughts, how we are because we knew what we are, if we change, we don't know what else could change? Or if we sit idle more often than not, we think of the past, a time we know took place with utter certainty. We convince ourselves that our past days — perhaps college years were the best or our first job was the best. Nothing like it. But they were not. If we think back they were filled to the brim with a lot of distress & uncertainty too. As a student in college, we dreamt of having the job we are in today and dream of what our day might look like being settled with a job and stable life. What would life look like we didn't have to ask our parents for money, look for employment, or strive for independence or the time when we could be on our own. But now, we are here & we have blissfully forgotten we dreamt of this day once upon a time. We spend so much time making sure the next day will be livable but very little time living it. Let’s change that.

Sometimes I look back on time, I recall all day brimming joy & fun time with friends and big dreams for life ahead. The life of a student or younger days was maybe what we’d call being free. It was easy we think now & the only biggest worry would be assignments. But think again, you lived through being a sad sake, rebellious, anxious, self-conscious teenager. I love to stay in the present, but let me be honest, when I sit down to write, I am often pulled back into the past to draw learnings and inspirations and understand myself and us as humans a little better than yesterday. These thoughts spring up from endless writing & unintended remembering.

Thinking back on time is not always correct, it is unfair to my present and even yours because although the past was undoubtedly incredible, it was also stressful & challenging in its way we seem to have forgotten and honestly even messy. Not because it was bad, but because life is such — it is everything other than one wishes for uncertain, messy, also difficult. But we should not forget it is between all these — it is also beautiful and can take you by surprise when you least expect it, making you believe it is worth it. 

When we remember by accident, we only see the best of times. However, when you reflect on purpose, you see the picture a whole good and bad, the hurt and the joy and I now want to express gratitude to my today, remembering the past moments when my life now is what I wished for then.

The Velocity of Being - A Short Story

Adrenaline fills his body, and the roar of the crowd a drug to him, a sort of tension he craved, hinting a possibility of victory rather than the certainty that he finds fun.

Among the audience, a boy in his teens sitting in front of the television is screaming with excitement.

“I can drive you to the stadium if you would like, son. The match is yet to begin and I have two tickets for us” his dad calls out.

“Yayyy, you are the best”, he screams with enthusiasm.

He wants to be there to cheer his team, giving him the chance to feel tribal, to feel like a member emerging and dancing, when joy came as an elation when the player strikes the ball into the net, a goal!

He could never play the game though, he was like a computer broken or you just downloaded a virus into it. The boy with the help of his crutches struggles to stand up, and make his way towards the car, to drive off with his father to the stadium.

Tonic of wilderness

                                                     Photo by Ignacio Brosa on Unsplash

Every day on my running path, I see a lady, who is enthusiastic as me to enjoy the pleasantries of the early morning silence. She has short wavy silver hair, overlaying with charcoal-grey hair. Eyes looking straight, powerful & mysterious. Skin, showing the wisdom & experience life has taken her through. She is there walking around my block every day. I guess she is over fifty or sixty. Walking briskly in a calm yet steady motion with track pants & a tee shirt & a sling bag. One thing that always caught my attention was her gaze from the masked face. Her eyes spoke and I heard.

She sought motivation from the early risers like me. When I run past her, I would see her steps grow faster. As if I sprung energy into her or anyone who passed by. 

I won’t have noticed any of the above, except for the strange response I noticed when I saw a group of people walking past her one morning.

She stepped off the road, into the unkempt, bushy garden & utility area. She ducked to avoid a pile of leaves, but she was still moving past in that direction, into the wilderness! 

Lockdown is easing & the caseloads have fallen under 200 daily cases & the positivity rate is below 1 per cent in Delhi. Despite this, our hearts are largely filled with gloom. We are not allowed to exhale - to relax. We are still fearful.

The government says that hospitalisations are ‘a rare case'. But ignore that, the hysteria is still living lingering in our hearts. After 18 months of living through a pandemic, we are still scared, and the lady I passed on my running path was scared.

So scared, she went off the road and into the bushes.

That’s when it dawned on me, we still have a long way to go. Even after all of us are fully vaccinated with added booster shots. Regardless of whatever freedom parts of the world enjoy, regardless of being on the traffic light travel system - red, amber or green list. Regardless of your location India, US, Australia…UAE, Japan etc. We are all in this together. We are still fighting this virus.

That said, we were still wary not to risk a crowded place in a public place full of strangers. So, we still more often than not opt to stay home or to meet at the home, sitting in airy surroundings, exchanging elbow bumps rather than hugs or handshakes as a concession to the virus.

We are still in the bushes, hiding & living in fear in hope that we don't fall prey to the virus.

Seasonal Presents

                                                      Photo by Adam Jaime on Unsplash

We don't realise the importance of different seasons & the mood it brings.

If days are seconds and months are hours, perhaps the seasons are the long clock remaining us in infinite ways, we are part of the bigger Universe, rendering our soul to the greatest clarity.

In Northern India May & June come with harsh & dry weather, as if you are in an oven the whole time!  But, with the advent of July, the rains returned bringing some respite. Shortlived monsoon, but the foliage that was looking tired, sad, exhausted were now coming back to life. 

The birds sat on the electric wires to soak themselves in the cooling showers, as if it was decided, they'll drench themselves in those seasonal rains to bring back their lost enthusiasm as the time stretched out during the sweltering summers. For them as if the party has begun, a season of dance, welcoming fun. 

Each season, bring along with it a unique flavour of dishes or beverages. Summers calls for cool drinks & rainy days calls for hot tea or coffee. With the ongoing humid days, you'll see in Delhi, the capital of India the roller ice-cream cart. It is a rarely sighted cart, equally frustrating because they do not have a fixed spot. They move about with their roller cart, making their elusiveness more desirable.  

You'll often find a moderate crowd resigned to the hot pedestrians gathered around the cart to get their share of ice cream to cool them off. This so-called ice cream looks so different from the factory manufactured packed flavoured ice-creams. Oblivious to this delicacy is the cars fleeting past the cart, with air-conditioning cooling them off, instead of the rolled ice cream. This unique delicacy is a fruit flavoured smoothie that instantly freezes on crushed ice. The very first bite revives the senses as the fruit chunks implode in the mouth spilling out the secrets! It's enthralling. 

You'll often see the cart vendors involved in the production that seldom register the curious onlookers like me, around them! If you visit the city in the months of summers or monsoon, make sure to watch out for them. Like I mentioned earlier, their elusiveness makes their cart ice cream even more desirable, so happy sighting! 

©Shweta, 2021. All Rights Reserved.

Travelling Philosophy & after thoughts..

Photo by STIL on Unsplash

 We all love to travel? Don't we? I have seldom come across people who say NO! But I am sure some people don't enjoy it as much. But the majority would say a biggggg yes! 

I take some time to reflect on this & realise why we enjoy it so much and how we associate ourselves with it. 

It is something it makes us feel...

We know it messes us up, but we all still want to take that break, that vacation which we plan to take time off. Because the mess is good, it leaves us craving for more, more of the place we travelled to, the more of the free time, the more of relaxation. I reckon when I am back home, something has changed, in the few days of travel. It is moving from familiarity and our comfort zone to an opposite - unknown!  

Travel symbolizes new beginnings and endings, like rebooting our body system and routine. You enter a new city and become an outlander. You feel like a child, curiously exploring the place, trying to make sense of everything around you - reading the signboards, cautious of the routes, the places to return to, visit in coming days etc. And in the span of few days, we leave some part of ourselves behind. We stay there, even when we have returned. When it is time to bid farewell, we feel sad, almost grieve. 

I will always feel lucky and grateful to have had these travel experiences ingrained into my consciousness. You get a bizarre feeling when you're about to leave a place like you will not only miss the surroundings, people, food,  and culture but you'll miss the person you are at this time at the very place because you realise you'll never be this way ever again. Life is a sequence of births and deaths. Moments are born, then moments die. For new experiences to come to life, the old ones must wither away, don't you think?

Anybody who travels with passion in the heart like the great traveller himself, Marco Polo who did not stay in a place from cradle to grave, with love to explore themselves and the world around them knows they move to be moved. It is not about seeing the Great Wall or Eiffel Tower or being on the move. Travelling simmers intrinsic elements - like a shift in the mood, emotions, feelings that arouse when you witness wonder, that you never ordinarily see when you are getting through your daily life. 

The daily life which in comparison is fairly what I would call rigidly structured. A busy life we all lead at other times. It’s hard to imagine doing so little every day. I'm sure we all have experienced it, even my limited free time feels rushed these days having so many things to choose from -  Should I  read? Listen to music? Go for a run/walk? Watch TV?  I certainly can say, my travel times have been one of the most formative, important times of my lifetime. A time of great growth, self-learning and unfolding within the spaciousness & mindfulness.

I wish there was a sort of time-lapse to measure how people change with departures and arrivals.

And yet with all the chaos it brings to our life, we take the mighty leap, you can't help but feel that perhaps humans are meant to be happy on the move, then living in a place, uprooting their identity and being a nobody in a new place. They seem unable to shake off the pleasures that are mooring them through this expedition, dwelling on the experiences assimilated by them, instead of focussing on what lies ahead, luring themselves in the symphony of the bliss of being somewhere new! Leaving them hanging, longing to return to the place to be a newly turned leaf. 

And, if you ask me when I am back after a vacation, I’m never the same as I left.

So.....I got published as a writer in Spillwords

Photo by Marcos Paulo Prado on Unsplash It’s published. My writing has been published. I have only published in Medium publica...