Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Terrace

The terrace is the best place in the house for me. A decade ago, the view was either the sky or magnificent trees. Now, the majority is either buildings or light spilt over and onto the sky. The green trees are minimal and although sky is still there, the bright lights of the advertisement hoardings and the mall nearby eclipse the beautiful twinkling light of the stars.

The stars always remind me of what Yann Martel said in Life of Pi. God has made this world so beautiful in just two colours. The white twinkling light of the stars against this vast blackness of the sky. It is such a wonderful, wonderful sight.

Add silence to this and it’s a beautiful world of its own, shunned from the constant motoring noises. Add the perfect sphere of the Moon and subtract all the clouds and you are awestruck. Just cant help gazing and staring at the tranquility. There is a divinity, spirituality and universality about it all that cannot be explained.

Back in the days when Bangalore’s HAL airport was functional for commercial purposes, we used to have flights preparing for landing over our locality. Some flights waiting for their turn and hence circling, some in the queue and some opening up their wheels, ready for descent. Between 9 pm and 10 pm, there were at least about 10 to 12 flights landing. Apart from the natural beauty all around, this man made bird was another thing of joy!

I don’t know what is it about an airplane that fascinates me but it sure does make me stop my after-dinner-walk and see every time a plane hovers over my house. Perhaps it’s the magnificence of the human mind that has thought of such an engineering marvel to simulate a bird! But alas, now that the new airport is 40 miles away from my house, hardly any plane can be seen.

Well, I wanted to write about something else and instead the prologue itself became the content, although a trifle repeated! But I guess that suffices for now…!


Back in the days of me reading Tinkle, there was one short moral story which till date I haven’t forgotten. It went like this:

A king on his way to palace sees a poor man toiling away hard, hitting rocks with hammer, day in and day out, amidst bushes and thorns and sharp stones. Overcome by the poor man’s dedication and commitment to work, the king gave him lots of jewels as a token of appreciation. Overnight the poor man became a rich man.

The now rich man buys himself the best clothes and starts living a lavish life. Soon after, when the king was again going on the same way, he sees the now rich man, dressed royally, sitting on the rock, nursing his finger and apparently resting. When the king asks what happened, the now rich man says he was prick by a thorn and there was a small dot of blood on his fingers due to which he cannot work.

The king then realizes what ill effects money has on man. While the poor man used to toil hard amidst the same thorns for the sake of earning bread, the same man starts complaining of minor things when he attains the next stage of life and is uplifted monetarily.

This made me realize - apart from whatever the king realized - that the intensity and vagaries of a struggle become evident only when it is past and when the next level of comfort is achieved. Till then, it does not even occur that one is struggling, because such kind of toil is accepted as a way of leading life and taken easily for granted.

There are many instances that can be quoted. Nowadays, almost everyone has a mobile phone. To think of a life without cell phone suddenly seems so difficult and so unimaginable. And yet, men lived without it for centuries. The future generation – who are born with laptops and cell phones as toys – will soon be remarking how the olden generation were struggling in life without cell phones in the then era!

We all used to go to school or college by walk or cycle or public transport. Day after day after day after day. Monotonously. A long 30 minute haste walk, an uphill cycle ride, an overcrowded bus – all that seems so much of struggle as compared to driving to office in an AC car now or even going in the plush company bus with added cushion for extra comfort.

Similarly, carrying the backpacks to school seems such a struggle as against taking one notebook to college. Cramming for studies for monthly internal college exams seems such a struggle when going to office. Retirement seems such a pleasure after decades of office going struggle. So on and so forth…

Most of our older generations, immediately after independence, have really struggled to set up and sustain a family. People have fled villages and come to major towns in search of a job. There have been instances also of starving because of lack of money, of walking miles together and of cycling from one part of the town to another instead of commuting in bus due to lack of money.

Our own parents have gone through these hardships at one point of time. All of this seems so much of a struggle, and yet, at that point of time in their life, they wouldn’t have thought of it as a struggle. It was just a mere way of life, of existence. Question of whether it was hard or struggle or not just wouldn’t have occurred to them as there really was no other option. But on hindsight when life is being good, one remembers all of those instances and wonders how one ‘struggled’ so much!

Ditto will be the case with us. The simple tasks we are doing now will be even simplified so much more in the coming generations that a time will come when the next generations will be wondering how much we oldies struggled!

So. Are we struggling? Or are we not?!

Monday, November 17, 2008

8 to 5

It was a very long time since this had happened!

Same thoughts as expressed here...

If only there were no certifications to complete...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Another Titanic?

There is this scene in the movie Titanic when for a split second, half of the broken ship is exactly perpendicular to the ocean. Everybody is hanging on to dear life, holding whatever they can. But the gravitational pull is too much and everyone is slipping...

There is this situation currently in the world now where every other day we are hearing news of people getting sacked, companies going down, hikes and promotions being cut. The scene is almost reminiscent of the perpendicular Titanic with people falling down, one after the other, trying desperately to hold but not able to do so...

Monday, November 10, 2008

Goodbye Ganguly...

8 years ago exactly on this day Ganguly had made his debut as the captain of India .... and Dhoni is again letting Ganguly leave as a captain ... fabulous spirit

Farewell salutations to the game's one of finest players...

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Thought for the day

Another night dawns into a day...
Another day dusks into a night...

Monday, November 03, 2008

40k. More or less.

- Wanted to buy a new two-wheeler.
40k. More or less.

- Wanted to install solar heater.
40k. More or less.

- Bangalore to New York air fare.
40k. More or less.

- Mom went to Singapore.
40k. More or less.