April 21, 2015

Climb Ev’ry Mountain

There comes a time where you’re on the brink of losing control, the edge of the cliff, a despicable wall of blankness in front of you.  And then, suddenly there is daybreak, a cool breeze, a respite.  Whoever said that new and exciting things were all about fun? They are much more about the fear of leaving behind the comfortable and stepping in to the unknown.  Me and a  lot of people in my immediate circle are doing just that. Being brave. To be happy. To never have to say ‘What If’.  Maybe it will turn out wonderfully for some of us, and perhaps we might be a little let…

March 23, 2015

You would think that I would have heard all of the Coke Studio songs, being such an ardent fan. Today, I came across ‘Mujhe Baar Baar’ by Abbas Ali Khan from the series’ most recent episode and was mesmerised for the longest time. Among the languages that I know, there is no doubt that Urdu is the most beautiful. It is like art in words, emotions in writing –  no wonder it was the language of choice of the Sufi saints. If you cannot get lost in a thought, then whatever is the point of it. I spent a while transliterating my favourite stanza from the song (presently blessing my…

February 24, 2015

A Ceylon Odyssey

I’m usually known to procrastinate specific things in life like exercise, collecting on finances and making phone calls among others, but I feel most guilty when I delay writing travelogues. From personal experience, I feel that the memories and trivia are most fresh within the week of returning from a trip, making it the opportune moment to pen it down for memory’s sake. It has been over two months to my trip to the island nation of Ceylon, and I’ve only got down to penning it down today. Milan and I had been planning to travel together for almost over a year. The Calcutta monotony was getting to her and…

February 22, 2015

Some people will spend all their lives trying to get the approval of othersIn return, they will be rewarded with hurt and retributionA true retort as anyIn this cruel cruel world

December 29, 2014

Invictus

I’ve always found poetry to be my favourite form of literature. Especially the sorts which have stories to tell in just four lines and keep you thinking for days after you read them. A friend shared this poem today and in light of some recent events, I thought they were some of the most beautiful and empowering verses I have read. Life hurls before us many choices – on making some we may feel delight or regret. It also brings forth several situations where we don’t have a say. Nothing can be done but be washed over by circumstance like a hapless bystander. What I find important here is that…

December 25, 2014

A Christmas Story

On Christmas day, I wanted to share a story that I came across a few days ago – and it moved me immensely.  Brought to popularity this year by Sainsbury’s, this advertisement was made in partnership with the Royal British Legion commemorating the events of the Christmas Day truce in 1914. It is especially poignant due to the fact that this year marks the centenary of the First World War  It is said that in a historic display of humanity, at around midnight on Christmas eve in 1914, German and Allied armies began to sing ‘Silent Night’ and the original ‘Stille Nacht’ from opposite sides of the battlefield. Nobody knows…

December 19, 2014

Polska!

When I first told people around me that I was going to Poland for the Eid holidays, there was more than one raised eyebrow. To start with, it made me a little sceptical, but my mind was made up, to visit. The country wears its charms lightly – so much that it doesn’t draw the attention of the average Euro-tripper. But step in, venture into its heart and you’ll find medieval cities, fairy-tale castles and untouched wilderness, served with an invigorating shot of vodka. We drove over the Polish border from Prague, headed to Kraków, the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. We had hired a…

November 27, 2014

‘I love the whole world’

I remember having wanted a gigantic world map from since I was little… Have you heard the Discovery Channel ‘I love the whole world’ jingle? It was playing in my head all the time while we were putting up my new 6 feet tall world map, which was a present to myself from Etsy – all the way from Bulgaria. Now I spent most of the day in my room daydreaming and plotting what part of the planet to step on, next! I love the mountains. I love the clear blue skies. I love big bridges. I love when great whites fly. I love the whole world. And all its sights and…

November 18, 2014

Euphoria…

This has happened to me before.  The getting overtly attached to people and places.  Watching them inch away and stare helplessly. And then doing it all over again.  In the past two years, TV series have sort of replaced my social life.  The characters have become friends – faces that I look forward to seeing everyday.  I laughed aloud at their silly pranks. And sobbed quietly when they hurt and even secretly prayed for them to be okay.  Despite it all, I knew I could come home and there they would be.  To tell me yet another story.  Make me feel like I was right there in their lives; a…

November 13, 2014

Never Again.

“So, let us be alert in a twofold sense: Since Auschwitz we know what man is capable of. And since Hiroshima we know what is at stake.” ― Viktor E. Frankl Wars are never good. But there are worse things, and until the year 1940 – probably nobody knew of them. Even as we march proudly through the 21st century, making ungodly advancements almost every single day, some parts of this discomfiting past are being left behind. In school, we were taught about the World Wars, but I have no recollection of discussing the Holocaust. Most of my education was at home, through my father – who has passionately read…