Saturday, June 26, 2010

A Coffee in the Park!!

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“Varsha, I’ll get you a coffee, stay here only, okay?” said Karthik.

She nodded saying “Ok, be back fast”.

She walked a bit and sat down in one of the benches in the garden. It was quite late in the night and there were not many people in her vicinity in a star-less night with the clouds covering the moon and the only source of vision were those lightings on both sides of the paths in the park and they were small enough to hide the tears in her eyes.

Her last four years flashed through her mind and she closed her eyes to let her mind talk with the breeze.

(Thoughts)

Varsha and Ananya lived in a rented house, in the a floor above the owners, another malayali family permanently settled here in Bangalore. Varsha worked as a clerical staff in the most glamorous and loved youth magazine of the town but those words failed to find a meaning in her life. For Varsha and her 3 year old kid Ananya or Anu, this house was their heaven and hell and all. It had a common room, a kitchen and a bedroom with a bathroom attached to it, and their common room and kitchen making up as their place to dine. Varsha left Anu in a play school while at work and often received a crying baby at the end of the day.

In the evenings they never had any TV to entertain them  neither a computer to bring the world to their fingertips. Evenings were usually silent with Varsha busy on some books and Anu never really had the cute kind of life, usually any 3 year old had. Life was silent for them but the important thing was that it’s been sailing forward without much of troubles for the last 3 years.

A pat on the shoulder shook her. She was in this world, not of dreams or horrors, of her on life, the way it’s been for the last 3 years. She turned back to see who it was and found Karthik with a smile in his face, has he changed at all in the last three years? , thought Varsha.

Karthik saw the traces of wiped off tears down her cheeks and thought how no woman can quite hide the tears in their faces and the sadness in their hearts, even while trying to!! The tears in her eyes made him realize that she might need to spend a bit more time alone and so excused himself saying he had to go make a phone call from the booth.

“Hmm...Yeah, okay!” replied in a lame voice. She watched Karthik disappear into the semi darkness,

(Thoughts)

Karthik has never changed a bit, thought Varsha, he’s the same guy she has known for ever, the same Karthik with whom she leapt into the pond every single day while in her child hood days, the same Karthik with whom she went riding cycle for hours in their native place, the same Karthik who taught her Mathematics the night before her 10th class boards and the same Karthik who presented her with a kiss in her right cheek on her 17th b’day. Karthik had promised with another kiss on her 18th b’day that he would, till his last breath, be with her, and it was a love, which had no origin and which they knew will never have an end, a love story without boundaries.

Today the same Karthik has just become her most un-expected guest.

(Earlier in the evening…)

Even though they had a calling-bell at the door, it was never used as they never had any guests, unless when Anu used to make Varsha ring it, her fondness for the ting-tong sound, but today at 8 PM it was strange to hear the ting-tong again and Anu came running from the bedroom thinking Varsha rang it, just to put a smile across Anu’s face, only to see Varsha busy with her cooking. Varsha was equally surprised to hear the ring and called out ;

“Who is this?”

“Varsha… Karthi…Its Karthik…” was the reply from the other side.

The name had sent vibes through her body and she was nothing more than a statue for a few seconds until Anu enquired who it was! She took Anu by side and opened the door. Karthik was not shocked at the sight but Varsha was, not shocked, but sad and that was quite visible in her eyes and her face and the dullness in dimples proved it all.

Karthik came in, he wore a blue shaded jeans and a casual t-shirt with some crazy writings, he still had the look of a college-goer and look at Varsha, who was in her night dress, Anu clinging on to her clothes, yes she’s a mother!! Varsha found starting a conversation a bit tough, not because he’s a stranger, but because she knew him too well and she had done too many things, she should never have done.

“I got your address from one of your old class mates at Bangalore…” said Karthik while stepping into their house and Varsha nodded closing the door. Varsha went to the corner switchboard and switched on the fan.

“What’s your name kiddie…” Karthik turned towards Anu and asked just to break the strong silence that prevailed in the room.

“Myy! name isssss Ananyaa…” replied Anu in a childish-rhyming way. (My name is Ananya.)

“Anu…my………daughter” added Varsha in a slow, paused way.

Karthik responded with a nice smile and kept his trekking bag in a chair and looked around the house, another few broken moments of silence.

“So what do you do now Varsha?”

“I work at a Magazine office, you?”

“I am about to complete my CA. Magazine? You became a writer?? ” asked a seemingly astonished Karthik.

A smile slipped into her for the first time since the ring of the doorbell.

“No…not a writer, as a clerical staff” replied with an extended smile and the tensions eased out.

The conversation went on in a light way for few minutes while Varsha served him a cup of coffee.

“Varsha…why don’t you come back, to home, your grandfather had asked me to search for you and persuade you to come back, at least once. Forget all that had happened…” said Karthik

“No Karthik, I never even expected to meet you, and I am sure, and particular, I am not going back, I can’t go back, no one will ever forgive me for my mischiefs” replied Varsha.

Karthik on hearing those words felt distressed and readied to leave. Varsha persuaded him to stay with them for this night and once Anu was off to bed, asked Karthik if they could go out for a walk.

(Karthik is back after phone call)

She heard the sound of approaching footsteps and turned back to see him, it’s been about 5 minutes alone. She thought if Karthik had gone to call her grandfather to tell him that he had met Varsha at last!??

Karthik came near her and handed her a bottle of Orange juice. She took it but never opened the cap.

“Karthik, can I say something?” said Varsha

“Yes, you said you wanted to talk to me while at home and haven’t spoken a word yet” said Karthik

Karthik, I am sorry for what had happened, and what I have done to you, I was so out of control at Bangalore…” she paused and glanced at Karthik’s face. Karthik didn’t utter a word, but indicated her to continue speaking and Varsha thought, Karthik has really matured over this 3 years.

“Actually, it all happened during our second year, we were just playing games, we were playing tricks on a guy, I acted like I had a crush on him, but he was an innocent guy and………I don’t know what happened ……I changed a lot, used to drink with girls……” she paused over and again and checked the expression on Karthik’s face. His face was calm and pleasant and the look in his face made her feel a bit more comfortable.

“ I fall in love with him…and decided to get married, but … but he died in a bike accident the day before our register marriage, it was a few days before my graduation…”

“ Then why didn’t you return to home or call me?” interrupted Karthik.

“ I was pregnant…” she was looking down and went to the bench and sat down there covering her face, as if to hide the tears.

“ But Varsha, how could you…, I haven’t seen you for 4 years…… and not for one moment have i thought about anyone else… and you…from college…it was shocking when I heard this news from your friends and I was angry and made up in my mind that I will never ever check for you again” Karthik spoke this time and Varsha was looking into his eyes, she sensed the pain in his eyes and touched his palm, symbolically asking for an apology.

“Karthi…” she called him but he didn’t reply.

“ Will you accept me now?” she never planned to ask such a question, but it just came out of her mouth.

“ But you don’t love me anymore, and if you didn’t care to even make a call in the last 3 years, why now?” asked a seemingly shocked Karthik but in a stern voice.

Varsha remained silent. Karthik continued

“…you said you won’t even come home with me, even to meet your grandfather…then why now all of a sudden?? ”

“Karthik, this is not about if I love you or not, this is about life and the reality of it. What I want at this time is safety ……. Security ….. Care …. I want to be ensured a life, where I know I have something to look forward to every evening, when I know I need to wake up early in the morning to prepare food for my family and serve my husband a cup of bed tea, someone to look after and guide Anu…… something like life and family ” replied Varsha with her eyes meeting that of Karthik’s.

“But you never thought all these 3 years ago…” said Karthik who now stood up and took the Orange juice bottle from her hand and took a gulp.

“Karthik…”

She didn’t have another word to say but enough was conveyed in that single mention of Karthik …the pain in her heart…the support and the care she and Anu missed…the loneliness in her life…everything.

Karthik sat down in the bench just as Varsha had stood up to join Karthik; Karthik took another gulp of the juice and looked at his watch. He said it was 12.10 in the midnight and enquired when she had office the next day. She said she would take a leave if Karthik stayed back. They decided to go back to her home, which was just 15 minutes’ walk away. They walked slowly and in silence, often looking into the other one’s face and in an instant, Karthik grabbed her hands and asked

“ Varsha, we have been inseparable for the first 20 years of our lives, unfortunate moments occurred and all these 3-4 years were the price we had to pay for it…” he paused , with a smile and continued “ … I will go back home tomorrow and talk to grandfather and convince everyone…”

Those words were spoken as if he had prepared them in his heart beforehand. Varsha had tears rolling down her cheeks and Karthik smiled at her with a widely open mouth, she wiped off her tears and stood there for once, it was just 5 minutes from the building.

Karthik looked surprised and stood back too. Varsha came near to him and kissed him gently and murmured in his ears “ I am sorry for …”

Karthik didn’t let her finish the sentence as he closed her mouth with his hand and said…

“All that happened yesterday has disappeared with the setting sun, I am glad I found you out at least today, all these were our fate, which just had to happen, which just had happened and this is also fate, now all that remains  is us. Me, you & Anu”

Varsha was relieved to hear those words and she held on to his hands and felt the warmth and they walked silently to her, to their house.

A story about love, hatred, emotions, feelings, relationships…A story of Life! The most important things in anyone’s life is the safety and the security of their life, the belief that someone is there for them, always.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Journey to the Unknown Spaces..An Explanation!

A Journey to the Unknown Spaces!


maro0636

Reviving memories, i don’t know how this title happened to my blog. It was not one, i had put up after spending hours thinking and imagining. My finger’s had just passed over a few alphabets and they formed words and those words were stitched together and at the end of a few seconds, the thing in the blog title space read “A Journey to the Unknown Spaces”. Back then i had never read more than a couple of blogs and i never knew anything about the blogs and the widgets i could put in and the financial prospects of it.


Frankly at the moment of creation, i never considered it as anything more than a personal diary, or if not so personal- nothing more than a diary, where i could periodically put in my happenings and views and ideas and thoughts and almost anything and everything. And that has been happening too, I’ve posted my random thoughts on a variety of subjects, my way of seeing and understanding certain things, but then i heard that the title of my blog ain’t doing justice to the contents in it, in an online forum. So then i tried to operate my own blog title and tried to find out the meaning of it and what i meant by it.


Is this a travelogue describing my visits to various places ??


No its rather a collection of writings which i have made inside the four walls of my hostel room or the shabby class room or the un occupied seats beside the lake just outside the campus walls. So to the question, is this a collection of travelogues, its a big no!


But then going through it all again, as a whole, isn’t this a travelogue too? If the question ‘to where?’ arises in your mind, to no where.


The journey to tomorrow!! A day or a thing that never comes. This is a travelogue of the journey, called life. A journey filled with high’s n low’s and turns and twists and happiness and sadness. A Journey filled with everything, but nothing. A Journey of which you don’t quite know who you are going to be out from collage, or where you are going to be or what is going to happen the next year, the next month, the next week, the next day, the next hour, or even the very next moment. Its the travelogue of my life, when i travel from horizons to horizons, to Explore the Un-Explored and to get to Know the Unknown.


A Journey called Life, to the Unknown. A Journey to the Unknown Spaces!


A few people have questioned the title of my blog (A Journey to the Unknown Spaces). They expected it to be a collection of  travelogues or journey descriptions, and were left confused after seeing the content. This was an attempt to explain the title in my way. 

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A Tragic Comedy! Beware of Thieves!

shopping
Being collage-goers, (Okay, in case you haven’t been to collage yet, or you are too old to rewind your memories back to those collage days, step into my shoes and feel the world!!) we thrive for every extra Rupee, Dollar, Ringgit, Yuan, Euro .. (Okay…Stop it Naveen!! You’re not giving a lecture on world currencies) .. so what ever be the currency, we thrive for that extra buck, so that we could add that T-shirt we liked very much, the one we thought  better suits us than that lifeless plastic model at the mall, or we could own that book you love so much, so that we can read a live & real book and not a pirated electronic copy. You would also want to go to cinema with your friends or go for a date with your girlfriend or even have your favorite burger at the KFC.


So imagine your papa giving you, say Rs5000 since he had a good day at business. You suddenly start planning under your study lamp on how to spend it and what you want to eat and what you are going to buy and what not! The next evening after your class, you are all charged up and excited. You set off to the best mall in a crowded city bus, and soon discovers that you had been pick pocket and your purse and with it the valuable Rs 5000 is gone.

Think of those few moments, the 5000 bucks with which you had planned a lot has been lost. It had just vanished into thin air. Its if those hours of planning and happiness that passed by were all just a dream? You feel bad, as if your girlfriend had just ditched you! The first couple of seconds pass by, silently and dejected. Next you find yourself cursing, not cursing yourself as in “ I am an idiot. Should’ve cared it better…” you would rather be saying “ That idiot who took my money is not going to enjoy it...he who stole my purse should be run over by a vehicle..Idiot!!..”

Imagine how it would be like to lose Rs 50,000 or a possession of yours worth that sum. Say your laptop. For a guy like me staying abroad, and that too in the strangest of all countries, China, a laptop is like the bread ‘n butter of your life. You want to watch a movie of your choice, want to chat with your friends around the world, want to listen to the songs of your choice, want a platform to save those things or files or study tools of yours, everything points down to this laptop and how would you feel about losing it?
This isn't imagination anymore, its neither a story nor a comedy, its a tragic truth. In the recent past, my friends here have lost 8 mobile phones, 3 cycle, and 2 laptops. The phones were not those random Chinese duplicates. They were brand new I-Phones, N-series & Sony-Ericsson’s. The cycle was brand new, and it was stolen being locked at the cycle garage. Many of them had saved money for long, to buy those beautiful and aspiring models, and they ended up losing it on a fine morning.
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Its a worry for every international student out here now. We do everything we are supposed to do. We lock our rooms, but how about they open the rooms at night and take it from your side when you are fast asleep? Can you cuddle with your laptop,hiding it by your chest while at sleep? Can you put your mobiles in your pockets while sleeping?? It would have been okay if the laptop had fallen from your hands and damaged, or you left it unattended at the class room and lost it, you can curse yourself for your ill-care, but what did they do wrong, to see their laptop stolen one fine morning??


The worst part is that in the surveillance camera, we found a lady coming up at an odd hour and going back with a laptop, and gave this video to the police, and all they said was that they had never seen this lady, and that they didn't identify her. Is this any kind of explanation? Or is it because being foreigners, they don’t mind if we lose things? Letters and complaints have been sent on a daily basis to the University, Police and even the Embassies, but the guys who lost the laptop are left alone, with like a part of their body cut off. How would you summarize these loses? Their bad lucks? Their ill-fates?? Their bad times??? Or would you rather say that the guy stole it had a good time and he was lucky and it was his fate to get a laptop for free, or that he rightly deserves the money he got after selling it??

I know these words of frustration aren’t going to bring back their lost laptops and mobiles. I am just trying to make some people if not everyone aware of this dangerous epidemic. Keep your things safe and don’t indulge in any of this. Stealing is one of the worst habits, even if it is a cookie from a shop. Everyone should try spreading this word, atleast to a person if not everyone, so that you can sleep peacefully ensured that your mobiles and laptops and vehicles are yours even tomorrow.