Tuesday, June 23, 2009

LOC:Line of Control

Will you take dowry?
No, I won't.

A deafening wave of laughter submerged my response even before it could surface on the canvas of our discussion. Mocking won't be the right word to describe it, though irony may just be perfect.
Sitting in a class of aspiring civil servants, I expected this response to be accepted as quite natural, on the contrary, it generated a series of laughter and comments:

"Humain kuch nahi chayiye, lekin aap apni beti ko dena chahte hain to koi problem nahi"

"App cash mat do lekin ek badi gaadi hoti to"

No one pointed fingers at me, no allegations were made.
Yet, i felt the pinch.
The ladies laughed, the gentlemen smiled, as if I had cracked the greatest joke at that hour.
Maybe, what they were referring to was correct, the prevailing customs and prejudices in the society, but then, who is to blame and correct, if not but we?
I often get the advice of keeping idealism separate from realism, yesterday was no different, but again an eye opener of the brutal fact, that in reality, a whole lot of us is still a barbaric, selfish bunch of individuals, afraid of the society as a tradition.

The Line of Control between good and bad, between values and objectives, between opinions and beliefs, seems to be diminishing at the pace of nauts. Our education too is of little help, as it is but ultimatley the environment that one gets at home which dominates one's thought process and defines the freedom with which one percieves the blurred reality.

Time and again, society bombs my wall between idealism and practicality with heavy canons loaded with pounds of reality.
In the wake of yesterday's fresh attacks, I am mending the walls.

This line of control may not last forever, i can only hope, it does.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A Red Day

15th June 2009.
Middle of the Year?
Very hot?

To be honest, one of the best days of my life.
By god’s grace, I finally bought a bike, a splendid machine, by the name of Honda Stunner CBF.
The Red beauty beamed towards me as a newly wedded bride beams to her groom, at the wedding ceremony, and boy, it felt awesome!!
Some men dream, few accomplish what they dream, and even fewer go beyond what they dreamt of. That evening, I felt, I belonged to that last category, maybe for an instant, but I was there, with a bang.
Like a gang of college friends going to attend a wedding, My colleagues Nitin , Bharat and Poornima, literally took me to the showroom as a groom is taken to the wedding Pandal, a little tense, and a lot more happy inside. By the time we reached to the showroom in Poornima’s car, excitement had taken over our office boredom. Then, we saw her, standing there, like a bride dressed in all red, ready to take the final step out of her house, into her new home.

After about an hour of chaotic documentation, after going through all those idiotic formalities, and the cash, came the moment all of us were waiting for.
Poornima, smiling like a fairy in dreams, handed over to me, the keys of my bike, and suddenly I realized, it’s done!
For a moment, I thought, I wasn’t there. I was seeing things, there was Bharat, beaming with joy, and also Nitin, acting his usual self, and everything was just perfect, but was it true?

Indeed it was, and the clouds of disbelief were soon drowned in the ecstasy of euphoria that followed. I touched my bike, gently, and put in the key. And then, away we went, my bike and me, out into the streets of Noida, as if, a Happy beginning…..

I had heard an old Indian saying, “Sabra Ka Phal Meetha Hota Hai”, and boy, it really is sweet, in fact, and it’s amorous.

As of now, life’s good !!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ye Pirate!!!

15 men on a Dead Man's Chest,
yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.
Drink and devil had done for the rest,
yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.

Rum, drink, Devil , death.
Is that all?

It's the song of Freedom, of free men, the ones civilizations have hated for centuries now, the one they call the Pirates.
Born from the marriage of crime and freedom, Piracy, never fails to attract young men, like an enigmatic lovely beauty, casting dark spells resulting in fatal attraction.
If I forget for a moment the wickedness, treachery and crime involved, I would love to be pirate, explore the open seas, be the king of my world, and cherish the feeling of adventure.
More than anything else, being a pirate, symbolically, would have released me from the countless notions and prejudices that the civilized society follows, and given me something I have almost lost now, the freedom of my thoughts, the freedom to break rules, the freedom to look beyond customs and traditions.

Someday, this world would have caught me, tried me for going out of the norms, and then choked my thoughts, unto death.

Yeah, A pirate!!!

But what if I am always ahead of them, and I escape somehow, every time as his holiness Captain Jack Sparrow does. Talking of Capt Jack, he says somewhere in the Pirates of Caribbean Trilogy, that it's all about the thought of being free, of freedom, that makes him a pirate. Aye sir!!

R.L. Stevenson gave me the most fantastic tale of my childhood in "Treasure Island", with Jim Hawkins, the 17 year old lad, capturing the imagination of my fantasies through his tale of adventure and bravery against the pirates on the Treasure Island.
I never knew that time, that I would like Long John Silver, the one-legged Pirate Captain, the lion of the seas. Pirates, the free men, sang this to celebrate their freedom:

15 men on a Dead Man's Chest,
yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.
Drink and devil had done for the rest,
yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Return of the Middle Path Approach

After a week or so of torturing introspection, as always, I have decided to opt for the middle path once again.
My getting into the endless list of Indian Civil Services aspirants was just a matter of time, and to be honest, this is my only option, as it seems, to be the change that i wish to see in the system.
Once again, I have a big dream, once again, I am caught between the past and the future.
Torn between the rebel and the responsible, my identity seems to be taking the path of the common man, powerful yet full of the fear of the unknown.
What is it that ignites my soul, the plight of the poor, the power of the post, the thought of getting into the system, the glory that surrounds a leader, the fame, the money or the passion to live forever through the pages of history?
The quest is on for the search of my identity, the route is shaping up, the approach is of the middle path.
What is it that I look for?
Am I afraid, yes somewhat..
But I am not giving up, not yet......