Friday, March 30, 2007

Arresting Images

Some images remain with you always and they are best retained in our memories as we can retain what we felt, heard, smelt and of course saw unlike the two dimensional photographs which just manage to capture the visual moment.

One such image that has been my most perfect visual moment is from my ancestral home in Calcutta. It was about 11 in the night; there was a power failure so I went out to the balcony. It was pitch dark, the crickets humming, a frog croaked somewhere, mosquitoes sang in my ear and the glow worms twinkled off and on at a distance, the leaves of the coconut tree in our garden swayed gently with a hint of a breeze and a bright full moon just above the coconut tree casting it's gentle light below.

This is beauty that no camera can capture; it just is something that I will always remember for ever.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Lolling Heads

I once read a post about personal space in a Blog I visit often and I was reminded about it in an incident today morning.

Our country being densely populated with over a billion people, personal space in mega cities in public modes of transport is not even a millimeter. Almost every part of one's body is plastered against someone else’s and one is left to deal with body odor, sweat and what not! I have outgrown my days of traveling with the masses but I do use the office buses that my organization provides to ensure that we reach office in time.

Today morning I was sitting quite comfortably between two scruffy looking ladies and since it’s a long ride, I either read a book or look out of the window and count all red cars going by (ha!). My two neighbors had in the meanwhile dozed off. In the midst of an intriguing chapter from the book 'Feluda's Last case' by Satyajt Ray, I find one head dangerously close to my left shoulder. I cringe at the thought of the hair laden with coconut oil landing on my shoulder and staining my clothes. While the head on the other side seemed to have reasonably clean shampooed hair, I noticed specks of white - dandruff! Yikes!

Obviously the event of any head landing on my shoulder had to be avoided at all costs. My reading was abandoned while I navigated myself to steer clear of these objectionable swaying heads. The funny thing is that the moment the hair fell forward on their face; they were alert enough to tuck it back behind their ears (reflex action?) but when it came to controlling their lolling heads they blissfully let themselves go.

The devil in me took over and I positioned myself at the edge of the seat, away from the back rest, I knew a speed breaker was coming up and the bus would jerk. Predictably, the two heads collided together when the bus went over the speed breaker and a wide grin of satisfaction spread over my face!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Writer's Block

After 13 months of bright sunny weather the much dreaded clouds have appeared, dark and dense which keeps out the light of creative thought altogether. Perhaps this is the work of the so called cruel number thirteen? So many times I can see my mental typewriter tapping away thoughts and ideas for me to write about, something akin to white fluffy clouds that float about on a bright sunny day without the promise of rain. When it's time for the words to rain on this Blog, they just shrivel up and die.

It’s all there in my mind, all the fantastic stories, the amusing anecdotes, the various experiences of ordinary day to day life yet my fingers refuse to execute thoughts into words. My mind comes up with excuses as to why I should not be stealing fifteen minutes after lunch break to write something. All I need to do is just to sit down and write but alas!

How can such a simple action be so complex? Writing is after all a gift of expression and all we humans want to do is express ourselves. Why has my mind suddenly obstructing what is a seemingly natural process?

While writing this piece, I fearfully opened notepad (as that is the blankest screen editor possible!) and hoped that I could at least put into words my current dilemma and thankfully, the words did flow. Perhaps it's all in the mind (as a friend often tells me), all I really need to do is to break those imaginary shackles and let my words flow like an endless river...