Monday, March 16, 2015

F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

Friends forever 




When you are married, the only thing you miss the most is being carefree, the laidbackness, or the way we people in Kolkata call it "Addagiri", where you just sit in a coffee shop or your college bench and talk endlessly... almost about anything, even things that don't concern you and your friends.

I would give my limbs to relive those days. Ours was a small group comprising of three girls, from Loreto College, Kolkata. But as fate would have it, we all got separated soon after we finished our graduation. I was married and had to shift to Mumbai. The other one shifted to Gurgaon, and soon even she got married and shifted to London. The remaining one is still in Kolkata (lucky devil).

Like most of the people, even we three had promised to be in touch always. Initially we were in touch but soon our present lives, with its endless demands, took over. Our daily calls became weekly and then monthly. Not that we didn't miss each other, because every time we spoke to each other, it seemed like we spoke almost every day as if we never lost touch. It was more like coming home.

 In March 2013, my friend from London came up with a brilliant idea. She was planning to visit Kolkata in the month of June and she decided to book a room for 2 days in a Kolkata hotel and relive the "Single years". Like a born pessimist, I thought it would never work-out. But somehow things started falling in place, my husband agreed, my in-laws agreed and so did my friends' parents and in-laws.

 On June 5th 2013, I finally met my friends after 8 long years; they were waiting for me at the airport. We jumped like adolescents, hugging endlessly and screaming non-stop. I could feel all eyes on us. Honestly, I didn't care. God had given me two days to relive my life and I was going to and nobody could stop me.

 We checked into the Hotel Park. Our adda (gossips, leg pulling) started immediately. The moment we checked our watch, it was already evening. We visited all the places which used to be our college haunts, from Vardaan Market to New Market, checked out few shop keepers, who we had a crush on... they were balding, paunchy. We couldn't help wondering what we ever saw in them. :D

 We even got dressed and visited Tantra, danced till the wee hours in the morning, honestly who cared we had a room in the same hotel.

Call me, a bad wife and a bad mother, but not once did I miss my son or my husband. I love them, but I loved the time spent with my friends even more. They were good happy times. There are no codes of conduct when I am with them. I am me- the real me.


The two days ended so soon and I didn't want them to. Those last few minutes we spent at the airport, when they had come to drop me off, were the best. We never uttered a word, but the way we saw each other and the choked good byes were enough to tell me that they missed me, the way I missed them. I was as important to them as they were to me. Things hadn't changed. Now these are few feelings that guarantees that you have friends would be there forever. This is the kind of feeling that fills you up with optimism and hope and I will cherish it as long as I live.

Day spent with your friend is a day well spent




For more stories on optimism https://housing.com/.

The picture is from my personal collection

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Am I too old?




I am a 34 year old housewife. I have never done anything that can be considered extra ordinary or bold or even remotely brave. . I have never had a boyfriend or even knew a guy (who was not a brother or an uncle or a relative), I was not even overly ambitious. Most of you, who might be reading this, must be wondering why I am even writing when I have nothing to boast off. Well, I did something which was very unlike me and it meant a lot to me ... I did stand up for a small/miniscule cause.

***

I have never questioned my parents, teachers, in-laws, my husband or even my friends. Not because I was afraid but because I had nothing I felt worth standing-up for. So whatever they decided for me I was cool with it.

My teachers thought I should go for commerce I did. My friends thought that I should appear for Jet Airways air hostess’s interview... I did. I even got selected but my parents thought being an over-qualified waitress wasn't good enough. I happily dropped the idea. My parents thought I should get hitched... I did. I know I sound extremely irritating and boring but that's who I was. Until...

Last year, my son (8 years) came running home and he said he wanted to learn how to play a guitar. I told him he was too young to learn that instrument and if he wanted he could learn Casio keyboard. Like all kids, he threw a fit and like over-zealous parents we got him a Guitar. As expected, after a couple of months he said he was no more interested in that instrument. Honestly, what more could we expect from an 8 year old.

For more than a month I saw that guitar hanging on the wall. Every day I would remove the dust from the Guitar and wonder what I should do with it? One day, while reading a newspaper I found a pamphlet which said:-

Learn Guitar in 3 months
Qualified Teacher
Rs. 2000 /month


I picked it up, carefully folded it and kept it in my drawer. I kept thinking what if I learned guitar? Vikram was off to school, Vikas was off to work and I don't even enjoy watching Television, learning guitar would be a good time pass.

So I casually asked my husband. Though he was cool with it... but he asked me “Aren’t you too old to learn Guitar?"

I knew I was too old, I knew I wouldn't be able to muster enough courage to attend that class.

Next day, like always I was dusting my son's room and I saw that Guitar - neatly kept inside a bag - hanging. Around noon, after all the maids had left, I carefully lifted that Guitar and walked out of my home. As I stood waiting for the lift, Mrs, Mishra - my neighbour got out of the lift.

"Vikram has his guitar class, right now?" She asked.

“No, it’s actually me who’s learning to play a guitar.” I said proudly.

“Aah…good. But...” I knew what she was about to say. I almost chorused it with her" don’t you think you are too old for it? I think you should do something that suits your age, may be yoga, classical music or even dancing.” She said.

“I always wanted to learn guitar. I think I am going to give it a shot.” I said politely

“Fine all the best.” she said and she left.

As I walked towards the class I saw my reflection on a car window, salwar kameez clad female carrying a guitar surely looked funny and weird, but I continued walking because I desperately wanted to learn. The moment I reached the class, all eyes were upon me. The teacher was somewhere in his late 20’s.

I sat beside the kids; few even greeted me “Hello aunty”. Well I don’t know if playing guitar was easy or not but learning with children.. None of them above 14-15 sure was difficult even somewhat embarrassing. I learnt a lot that day .It was real fun playing a guitar. It felt good even liberating to some extent. I felt bad when the class ended. As soon as I got home, I finished my house work as fast as I could and I got down to practicing my guitar. Yes, it was MY guitar now.

***

I have been learning that instrument since last 3 months and I think I am pretty decent at it. I practice almost every day. Finally I have found something I am passionate about... maybe a little late in life but I have found it.


You know, sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Just literally twenty seconds of just embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it – Benjamin Mee in We bought a zoo. 





The post is written for  https://housing.com/

The picture used in this post is take by me.