Saturday, November 29, 2008

An Inconvenient Truth

I sat beside her, my legs slowly getting numb. Her hands lay heavily on my thighs, occasionally lifting the end of her sari to wipe the tears that incessantly poured from her dark, sleep-deprived eyes. I simply let her have me by her side. I stroked her hair, pulling aside the thin strands of water-soaked hair that were falling on her face.

She looked horrible. Sick.

I wiped one stream of tear that rolled down her cheek once again. I wanted to let her know that I was there for her, that I would be there for her - forever.


But the word ‘forever’ itself sounded so cliché at the moment. Such moments of uncertainty ought not to be teased by such words. Hence, I simple gave her my company, in silence.

I felt incapable of even relating to her emotions, let alone feeling her feelings. Of course, how much can you expect from a guy who was just 2 years old when his parents passed away?

One more tear. One more wipe.

I wished I could make her feel better. But, I badly feared that this emotion might wrap her for a long time to come, making her a totally different person.

I made a sideward glance at her. More tears.

I tried hard. But the only thing I felt was a big solid lump stuck somewhere between my stomach and my throat, making me feel sore. I myself knew about the loss of my parents only at an age when I realised that a father and mother existed in everybody’s life. I was told that I cuddled into my maid’s arms weeping – weeping because she was weeping and because everyone else around me looked at me with teary eyes.

Maybe, one day I would learn how she felt.

But I dared not to think about it, for; I didn’t want to imagine a day without her – a day without that laughter, a day without the sound of her anklets reverberating our home, a day without her faint voice emerging from the kitchen in between the clattering of vessels, a day without her presence during dinner, a day which would dawn without her beside me or a night which would sleep without her warm breath on me.

That would be the day I would realize how she feels now and maybe that would be the only feeling I would ever feel throughout my life.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Blades of Beauty

Tried my hand at photography!

"The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass; it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself."

- Henry Miller

Camera Courtesy: Mask's Nikon D80.

P.S.1: Picture copyright hence remains with His Honour @ Flickr.

P.S.2: @ Mask – P.S.1 deserves a treat I guess :P

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Pom. Pom. Pom.

The bus driver honked. The bus moved rather slowly, inching its way through what must have been a heavy traffic. I held on to the support bar on the right hand side lest I should slip from my seat. I didn't dare turn to the person sitting next to me. I could smell a strong fruity fragrance from her side – a very creamy one. My guess was a strawberry flavoured perfume – definitely a very charming lady, unless otherwise.

I sat there, quietly listening to the music that reached my ears from the lady's earphones. A melodious and lovely song starting with the words Pehla Nasha started to play. My knowledge is limited to tamil music, so much so that if you sing to me one line from any tamil movie, I would sing to you the whole song. Recently, my 20 year old daughter uploaded a few hindi songs in the new Ipod that she bought for me and that’s when I have begun to appreciate hindi music.

Pehla Nasha – the music went on with a sensuous saxophone interlude. I haven’t yet watched the picturization of the song and so I let my imagination run wild as I choreographed the beautiful song in my mind’s eye. My foot began tapping the floor of the bus in appreciation.

Few minutes passed. The sound track changed. The bus rattled into a stop. The lady next to me excused herself to get out of her seat. Her voice was sweet and gentle. I turned myself towards the aisle in acknowledgement, giving her ample leg space to make her way out. I could feel her soft fabric brush my arm as she walked away. I moved to the window seat, letting my head rest on the window sill and closed my eyes.

I swayed to the tunes of the bus’ path as my journey continued. My dreams continued. I was still under the influence of the song. I told myself to remember to ask my daughter to upload this song in my Ipod.

About half an hour passed. I noticed that no one sat next to me.

Just when I was getting restless to sit anymore, the bus buzzed with activity. I knew it was my stop. Strong instincts. The driver brought the bus to a hault.

I took the stick next to me and unfolded it. Positioning it firmly on the floor, I stood up. Setting my best foot forward, I heard my walking stick tap on the rickety bus floor as it led me on my dark path.

Tock. Tock. Tock.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Tag - A for Apple

A - Apple movie trailers(A for Apple–fair enough?) :P

B - My recently discovered toy to play with photos :)

C - For live cricket scores - Cartoons for a stress free life

D - Quick online dictionary and thesaurus - Academics, at times :D - Dilbert comics online

E - Wikipedia

F - Your vocabulary could earn a few grains of rice for the hungry - Some of the best captured pictures - Kodak moments :)

G - Mind-blowing gifts for most occasions!

H - The Hindu online – Hallmark cards

I - Head to tail about movies :D

J – Journal store online

K - Can’t think of anything but this. Busy man. No updates :(

L – University’s library resources

M - Set foot on my blog with a “Main Hoon Na” comment. It speaks volumes now :) - For songs :)

N - University Website - Pubmed – For my academic reference

O - What is the word you are looking for?

P - Rib-tickling comics and so true! - A great learning platform for Adobe Photoshop freaks

Q – Just for quotes

R - Quick news (and gossip) - Reader’s digest online - Movie reviews

S – Every girl’s desire :) - Singapore bus guide online - The complan girl is an avid admirer of your humorous outlook on life :)

T - I love her style

U - A recent reference for my lastest gift :D

V - Nice videos

W - Just for fun

X - Wish list :D

Y - Practically everyone’s favourite I guess

Z - An awesome gift site


I tag Dimplicious, RSubras, Venkatesh :D


The Tag name is A for Apple
Give preference for regular sites
Ignore your own blogs, sites.
Tag 3 People.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

She - Part IV

While commotion raged within the house, he sat on the verandah staring into the skies’ nothingness. Why would it have to be him who had to let go, he thought, seemingly trying to evade the inevitable.

The sound of her anklets awoke him to her presence beside him. Her feet stuck out of the embroidered sari as she knelt down in front of his chair. The bangles in her hand chimed as she effortlessly turned his chin to face her twinkling eyes. He looked into her eyes with longing and she gave back an assuring smile in reply. However, he could see the sorrow that lay beyond her smile, for, there he was, right in front of her – painting her mask.

He imagined her walking away from him. Slowly. Gently. Further and further away. She seemed to take away with her, everything that he could call his. Everything but one – a heavy heart which would henceforth just hold memories – of him, of her, of each other and of their masks.

She jolted his lap, stronger this time, persuading him to halt his imagination.

Cheer up now papa. I’ll be there for you, anytime. You know that.” She said, winking at him and drawing him close into one tight hug.

Kissing her on her forehead, and cupping his right palm on her head, he blessed her. Leaning back on his chair, he sat there watching her walk away, only to become his neighbour’s wife.

~The end~

P.S.: You can read the entire "She" post here.

Monday, August 18, 2008

She - Part III

She walked another step closer to him, bending down to whisper into his ears, her long hair falling on his shoulders like a blanket. The warm air that she breathed out along with the cold touch of her earring on his neck tickled him. He loved it when she murmured secrets into his ears – it seemed to strengthen his faith, the faith that she trusted him more than she trusted keeping the secret to herself.

He felt a protective aura cloak him as she held his hand in hers – a feeling of security as if nothing in this world could harm him – not even the sickness that was troubling him now.


It was a unique feeling which otherwise only his mother could have made him feel.

Like grey clouds before a rain, her face was changing colour. He saw the tears pooling in her lower eyelids - waiting impatiently to muster one more drop so that they could surrender to the gravity that the slope of her cheek bones had to offer. The tears shone in her eyes, synonymous to the glimmering silver lining of every cloud.

Finally, nature succumbed to do her part. The lightening sincerely struck before the thunder.

Her teary eyes spoke before her voice did.

To be concluded...

Monday, August 11, 2008

She - Part II

His heart pounded in sync with her swift, confident steps as he watched her climb. Her thin legs carried her up the ladder.

Higher and higher.

Further and further away from him.

He stood here, at the foot of the ladder. His neck strained at the burden of the head looking up at her. He was unaware of how tightly his fingers were clinched around the bars of the ladder, as if they might crumble under his daughter’s weight.

Reaching the top, she called out to him. Her flimsy arms waving out to him in delight. He smiled back at her - a smile that struggled to strike a balance between joy and hidden fear. Joyful of her happiness. Fearful of watching her at a distance beyond his own arm’s length.

She began her slide down. Coming closer to him.

Closer and Closer.

Landing hard on the sandy ground, she resurged onto her feet to climb back on the ladder for her next slide. His fingers just managed to skim past her slender arms as she ran away once again.

He felt out of control – out of control over his own emotions. His over protectiveness was turning into a burden on himself. It wouldn’t be long before she feels the same, he thought.

Not long.

To be continued...

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

She - Part I

The early morning breeze fluttered the little hair on her rather bald head. It was funny, yet cute. She looked fresh - her cheeks tender and pink, highlighting the veins that ran within them. With a fine line of dark curled hair, her eyelids enveloped her eyes, like an orange peel covering the ripe fruit beneath. Her lips – rosy and thin, further accentuated her fair complexion. God had sent her with lipstick for a lifetime, he thought. Except for the rhythmic movement of her chest and the flaring of her tiny nostrils, she didn’t move a muscle. The four fingers on either palm were locked around her thumb, showing off her already overgrown fragile nails. She was more than comfortably cuddled into the bedding. After all, it was stitched out of her mother’s old sari.

He watched her, adoring the magic that the early morning rays had on her, or rather, vice versa. He wondered what she would possibly be dreaming. Of fairies? Gods with flowers? Clowns? Or maybe, just maybe, him.

He wanted to ask her, what it was, that she was seeing with her eyes closed.

Contemplating if he wanted her to be awake or sleeping, he gently swayed the cradle. She twitched at the movement, rubbing her nose with the back of her palm and sinking back into her comfort zone. He pulled back his hand, guilty of having disturbed her. He stopped breathing for a moment, lest she should wake up again.

He didn’t know what to do. He had never been this close to a baby. Never. Ever. Now he was left with no choice. It was but his daughter. He wanted nothing to hurt her. Not even the wind. A pang of belongingness ran like a gush of adrenaline.

Sitting back on the chair, he watched her, waiting to be noticed. Silent and patient.

To be continued...

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Habits Die Hard

“Don’t bother mom. I’ll make the sandwiches myself.” He said, checking his watch.

Having 20 minutes to spare before his college bus was to arrive, he sat on the couch with the newspaper on the tea table. Glancing through the headlines, he began to evenly spread butter across the slice of bread. He made sure that every inch of bread had a generous spread of butter – a habit he imbibed from his mother. To him, she was the epitome of perfection and he felt relieved to have got her genes passed down to him rather than the ‘clumsy’ genes of his father.

Biting down the last bit of bread, he folded the paper and placed it under the tea table. He had 7 minutes left to catch the bus. This was the very part of the day he hated – leaving his mom behind at home and going to college. He slid back into the couch and stared at his mother. She smiled back at him – curled thin lips through which peeped a row of shiny teeth and eyes glowing with mischief, as they cast three fine lines from the corner that faded into her temple – the only visible sign of her age.

Her smile was magical and eternal.

Moving closer, he looked deeper into her eyes. He thought he saw a bead of tear building up in those tiny eyes of hers, possibly even faking the smile. Ready to leave, he finally whispered, “I love you and am going to miss you mom.”

Two years had passed since he had helplessly succumbed to let her sleep forever, but that wouldn’t change him one bit.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Black and White

Roshan sat on the tall chair and waited for instructions.

“Ok Roshan! Here we go. Read aloud each alphabet on this board. Line-by-line.” said the doctor in a friendly tone.

“P F W K C N S Q X D Y U…” He read along with no sign of trouble. However, slowly the letters appeared smaller with every other line. While he was half-way through the struggle to deciphering the last word in the 5th line, the doctor spoke –

“That’s good! Now….. look at this. What number do you see?”

“18” said Roshan instantly.

“And this one.” the doctor continued.

“27” he said, even quicker.

Taking out the last plate in the stack, the doctor asked, “How about this last one?”

Roshan stared into the card, unable to notice anything but differentially sized green circles. He looked closer. Still nothing.

“It’s got no number. Just green circles.” he said, curling the corner of his lips into a you-can’t-trick-me-boss kind of smile.

“You really can’t identify any number Roshan?” the doctor questioned again, drawing his eyebrows together and staring straight into his eyes. Roshan was the first patient in his 2 years of private practice who had such wonderful eyes – sparkling and blue.

“Nopes.” He replied, this time more confident than the previous.

“Let me look at your eyes. Sit erect on this chair and look into this eyepiece.” the doctor said, moving over to the other end of the machine and seating himself on a high raised chair.

Bright rays of light flashed right into Roshan’s lens. It took him a few seconds before he could get accustomed to such high intensity of light. The doctor examined him for a minute in silence and finally broke the silence –

“I suspect you have colour blindness Roshan. Have you ever noticed?”

“Dammit!” Roshan blurted out, running his fingers through the neatly cropped hair. Getting himself back together, he continued bluntly -

“No. I havnt’t.”

The doctor explained to him that it is most certainly genetic (inherited from his father). After discussing the possible solutions, Roshan walked out of the consultation room – with one big shattered dream.

Later that evening, Roshan sat at the balcony, staring into the open star studded sky – it was no less beautiful than a neat blanket spread with tiny specks of glittering crystals. This was the first instance in a really long time that he was quiet. The silence echoing from him was too unusual for an energetic and enthusiastic guy like him.

As he was watching an airplane fly past the dark sky, his brother walked in from behind and said –

“Hey! Apart from the good brains, I heard dad gave you some bad genes as well! Well you pilot wannabe, get over it!”

Anger gushed right from the bottom of Roshan’s stomach. Without turning back to look into his brother, Roshan shouted -

“Shut up and get lost before I bang your head! A big head with no brains is all you’ve got.”

His brother stood there giggling.

Unable to bear it any longer, Roshan spun around on his chair, pointed his index finger to his eyes and said sternly,

“He gave me amazing blue eyes! You didn’t manage even that!”

His brother fled out of the room, leaving Roshan to stare into an identical pair of blue eyes – only that they looked remorseful.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Once upon a time...

I waited for my clock to strike 6, wanting to rush back home and catch my favourite 7pm show on NBC. Today would have been just-another-day in my life if not for her.

There she was, near the parking lot. I walked past her, my head straight, trying to catch a glimpse of her through the corner of my eyes. I walked in a manner I very rarely do - quick long steps, looking hurried. Was it because I feared that she might hear my heart pounding loud? Or did I fear that I might blurt out to her what might one day be the inevitable words from my mouth? Or was this just not the right moment to let her know that I knew not of a world that existed beyond her?

I strode to my car as fast as I could and opened the door to the back seat to put my laptop bag. My heart still throbbed, sending pulses of fear to my entire body. And then it happened. While I was bent down to clean up the back seat and safely keep my bag, I felt a hand rest on my shoulder. Almost thrown off the ground, I found myself staring at her – those beautiful sparkling eyes that for the first time reflected mine.

“Happy Valentines Day Raj!” She said shyly, her cheeks turning pink.

“Hey! Thank you Roshni! Wish you the same. I wanted to come over myself to wish u!” I said, carefully placing each of my words.

“Why didn’t you then?” She asked me, like a kid questioning her father.

“Hmm… I don’t know… I didn’t know how you would take it.” I said, slowly.

“Why? What’s wrong?” She emphasized, as if cajoling me into getting those safely-locked-up-words out of the mouth.

“Welll.. you are a ggrreat friend.. anddd I didn’t want to spoil things between us. Sooo yeah.” I stammered.

She looked at me, right through my eyes. It felt like she was scanning my heart to catch a glimpse of those 3 words that were so strongly etched and hidden in one corner. Those 3 words that I had for 2 years now saved - just for her.

“Why do you think what I think Raj?" she asked me, out-of-the-blue, sounding naughty and affirmative.

“Because I think the same.” I said, with a confidence I never knew I would have in front of her.

“Hehe! Well then, why this hide-and-seek?” She asked me.

The last place that I had imagined having the conversation of my lifetime was my office parking area. It seemed a perfectly strange place to propose to the woman of my life. Finally, deciding that I would not get a better opportunity, I opened my mouth and uttered those words that shall ever haunt me-

“So, is it a yes or a get out?”

My heart raced at a pace it never has since I was born. My world swirled.

“Does waiting for one person for 2 years mean a get out?” she retorted, casually.

Oh God! Who the heck would reply like that for a proposal? I hated the way she always had to make things so complex. Can’t we just break it and go bang – ‘Look-!-This-is-what-I-think-about-you’ and get done with it?

Before I could take my anger any further, my heart was now throbbing with excitement and swarmed with happiness. I wanted to kneel down right there and tell her how much I loved her. I wanted to go atop the tallest building in the city and shout to the world that she loves me too. I had always thought its Bollywood that comes up with such fantasizing ideas of being love struck, but that day, each of my own criticisms backfired.

While I stood floating on cloud nine, gaping at her and still trying to ask myself if what was happening was indeed happening, she stole me of that one ultimate chance of a lifetime.

“I love you Raj.” She said, in a plain soft tone. The words touched my heart before they reached my ears.

“I love you Roshni.” I said. My eyes felt warm. I wanted to cry – cry on her lap.

We stood there, too excited to talk, relishing the new dimension of silence that prevailed between us – a silence filled with meaning, a thousand words, a million symphonies and endless love.

Finally, she broke the silence and asked me to take her out.

“Somewhere. Anywhere.” she said, like a kid. I began to love her more for that innocence.

I opened the front door of my car and offered to her the seat that was meant specially for her. I took out a small poster from the dashboard and stuck it on the rear glass of my car. It was a poster that I had bought in a car accessories store almost 3 years ago. I had saved it for that one day – the one day which I had no idea when to anticipate. I started my car, for that ‘somewhere-anywhere’ that she wanted to go.

Finally, with the two of us, my car rolled out of the parking lot, gleaming with the words, “Princess on Board” at the back.

P.S.: Happy Valentine's day :)

Thursday, February 07, 2008


The early morning rays shot right onto his face through the blinds of his window. The weather was cool and the warmth of the sunrays only made him cuddle closer into the blanket. The alarm blew off on the desk beside him and he simply popped his hand out of the blanket and put it on snooze. Everyday in Ranjit’s life was a fresh new start – smitten with excitement, pressure, happiness, distress and a constant battle with the one thing that no one has possibly beaten - death.

Being a doctor for the past 10 years had its own effects on Ranjit. He was a changing man – with every year, every day, every patient, every sickness and every cure. Medicine had taught him some amazing lessons in life, one amongst which was to enjoy the whole act of ‘being alive’ before you are taken over by something totally unexpected.

He never really complained about how medicine made him disclose certain unpleasant truths to his patients or their relatives. It was a part of his job and he had by now learnt to deal with it. However, there was one thing that Ranjit thoroughly disliked about his profession. It was the way medicine made him look at each of his close ones in the perspective of what could possibly harm them. There was this constant surge of diagnosis that silently ran across his mind as he mingled with his relatives and friends.

The alarm got alive again and finally Ranjit slithered out of his bed and got himself ready to leave to the hospital. He made himself hot coffee and a few slices of butter toast and got into his car. The radio jarred in his car as he drove just under the speed limit on the highway. Upon reaching the hospital he checked on his patients and went straight to the lab to collect some results.

“So, have you gotten the results of that kid in Room 712?” asked Ranjit. He had his hands locked at the back. Fingers crossed.

“Oh. Yes. That child is positive for leukemia. But I guess we are still in the early stages, aren’t we?” Asked the lady. Her eyes looked at him desperately for a positive answer.

“I think so. I’ve got to see the kid. I’ll see u later. Thanks Brinda.” Ranjit spoke in a broken hasty voice and sped away from the lab to the Room 712.

From outside the glass door, he saw the 15-year-old’s mother reading out a sports magazine to him, as he lay down staring at the pictures in the book. Ranjit knocked the door and walked in.

“How are you feeling Jay?” Ranjit spoke in a soft voice.

“Not bad.” Said Jay excited.

After some morning pep talk, Ranjit had no choice but to come to the tough matter in hand. He called Jay’s mother aside and explained to her that her son was now suffering from cancer and that it was possible to nip it off since the diagnosis had been made early. He quickly dealt with the flood of emotions that followed the dreadful news and assured to do his best. A few minutes later he walked back to the Jay’s bed.

“Anything wrong with me?” asked the kid as soon as he saw Ranjit get into the door while his mom stood sobbing outside the room.

Ranjit knew what to say. It was just going to be hard.

Slowly, his voice broke and he bent down to the kid and said, “It’s nothing Jay. You are sick, like every other person in this place.”

“What kind of sickness?” asked Jay, in a voice demanding the entire truth.

“Hmm… Well. Its nothing that should worry you provided you promise me something.” said Ranjit, looking eagerly at Jay.

“You are weird. I’ve never seen a doctor ask his patient a promise. What is it anyway?”

Ranjit felt cold upon hearing Jay’s words. He continued, “I need you to cooperate with my treatment. I’ll make sure you get back to school as soon as possible. Deal?”

“Sure. I promise.” replied Jay.

Just when Ranjit turned to leave, Jay held his hand and called him back.

“Will it hurt doctor?” asked Jay, his face suddenly turning pale.

“I’ll make sure it doesn’t.” assured Ranjit, patting him on his shoulder.

Looking up at Ranjit in between his eyebrows and holding out his palm, Jay asked him in a whisper, “Promise?”

“Promise.” Ranjit replied holding Jay’s open palm.

Thus begins another story of every patient’s childish fear, every relative’s flawless hope, and every doctor’s faithful promise.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Lost Identity

* This story has been selected for publication and hence removed from the page *

P.S. 1: Wishes for a wonderful new year! :)
P.S. 2: My first attempt at a long story. :)