Friday, March 26, 2010

Thursday, February 12, 2009


1. Early mornings are very peaceful, unlike evenings that come with a hollow feeling in the stomach.

2. The electrician and the plumber are important people on the phone list.

3. A good STD plan helps.

4. Post-its are more important than toilet paper in the house.

5. There is a lot of charm in roughing it out.

6. The breeze in the city smells not just of fish, it smells of dreams and hopes.

7. Haji Ali gives the best black and white shots and the sun sets most beautifully at Marine Drive.

8. It’s gratifying to make a sunny bright home out of four cold walls.

9. I’ve stopped relating to a lot of people.

10. And I’ve become something I never was - careful.

11. Somewhere along the line, I also became okay with eating alone.

12. Love the character of Todi, Phoenix, and all these other mills.

13. There’s nothing like three months of rain.

14. I’ve learnt that rebate is not just a word that rhymes with debate.

15. The process of evolution is much faster when you live by yourself.

16. I still have to cross the line from missing my friends feverishly to fondly remembering them.

17. You get very little time to feel or think in this city, in that sense Bombay can be a great escape too.

18. I enjoy being the outsider. It’s liberating.

19. My opinions and feelings are no more rigid, black, or white. They are fluid, like the waves.

20. It’s important to keep in touch with yourself, perhaps through music, books, photography, and writing. Otherwise, the chaos of daily life in the city can swallow you.

21. Wish Blue Frog was less steep, Hard Rock less far, and Zenzi less faffy. Enjoy them anyway.

22. Have two lifelines, two best friends. Also, have a few lovely acquaintances in the city. For a drink, or a chat.

23. Roar of the sea during monsoon is almost deafening, it absorbs all the disturbing sounds.

24. Independent is a highly misunderstood word.

25. I breathe a truly hysteric air.


1. I always use two plastic cups for my coffee at work.

2. I associate songs with people. I associate people with seasons. I associate seasons with moods.

3. I have gone from being overly expressive about my feelings to being painfully guarded. I oscillate between two contrasting zones.

4. I love the 70mm experience. I fall for small eyes. I enjoy watching pigeons. I have a weakness for white flowers. I fear the sound of flowing water.

5. In my growing up years, I wanted to be a professional singer. I now want to be a farmer.

6. There is only one person in my life that I haven’t met, and I still call him a friend.

7. I am dyslexic about paperwork and technology.

8. Catharsis is my favourite word. I don’t believe in religion. There may not be any connection between the two, except my passion for both.

9. The most unusual compliment I ever got was about my shape of my chin.

10. To me, dark rum is my rose with a thorn. It gives me blisters but it makes my day anyway. No I don’t usually drink during the day.

11. I was on Life Saving Drugs for 12 years. Five years ago.

12. I can listen Wish You Were Here by Floyd in loop for days, nights, months. And I love exaggerating. But no, really.

13. I am still nervous getting off a bicycle.

14. I went a zoo on my second date with my boyfriend in school.

15. I am big sucker for art house hindi cinema and have not left a single dvd, cd, video cassette ever. Ek Doctor Ki Maut and Ijaazat are all time favorites.

16. I have extreme love for some of my friends and I truly believe they have rolled over from my past lives.

17. I want to end up living beside an apple orchard. In a small cottage house with picket fences and all that jazz.

18. I think I am pretty good at photography. And no, this is not about self love, I have evidence on my laptop and my walls.

19. I want to be immortal. I can’t fathom the fact that one day all of us will die.

20. I have simple fantasies – like riding through sunflower fields in a cycle.

21. I used to be the black sheep of the family. I’ve turned out to be quite a hero now.

22. I am a sucker for travelling and have an insatiable love for the mountains.

23. As a child, I never played with toys. Make belief cricket, without a ball and bat with my Dad is what I played.

24. My mother once locked me in the bathroom with a hen gifted to us by Dad’s orderly on Eid.

25. My most wonderful Simla memory is being an 8-year old, wearing home knit clothes, going to buy bread from the bakery every morning in winter, balancing my my gum boots in snow.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Bring the ball back. Baby sit all day. Offer someone a lift. Give away free advice. And your tiffin.

Help the backbencher you’ve never acknowledged before.
Help someone with change. Someone else with directions. Or with mathematics.

Let someone else get ahead in the queue. At the red light. And at the jogging track.

Push the door. Bring an extra cup for your next table neighbour.
Do someone else’s overtime. Drop her home. Pick them up. Leave the change.

Help someone with their homework.
Share your favourite tee. Your Wodehouse. Your morning newspaper.
Offer your pen. And your shoulder.

Let someone else use the ATM first. Or the STD booth. Or even the washroom.
Give up the window seat. Buy the balloons you don’t need.

Take a picture for the honeymoon couple.

Give mom an off. Pick up the phone. Open the door. Share your umbrella. And your seat in the bus.

Help someone tie a knot. Or open a shoelace.
Let the lady order first. Read the newspaper to grandpa.

Give up the remote control. Pick up the pen from the floor. Return a lost ring.
Walk someone else’s dog. Take care of your neighbours’ letters.

Offer a toothpick. Or a tissue. Help someone wrap a gift. And finish a meal.

Hold the table when he fixes the bulb.
Hold your breath when she is sleeping.

Pray. Cheer.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


Not all hangovers cause a headache.
Not all hangovers last a few hours.
Not all are a consequence of drinks and debauchery.

Some stay with you for days, some last months. And you could be completely off alcohol, I bet.
I experience this other category of hangovers often.
And only people like me who wear their heart like pride on their sleeve, who scream when happy and howl when sad,
who obsess equally over a lost nose ring as they would over a lost love, would know what I mean.

Sunaina, I suspect you’re like that too.

No black coffee can cure a hangover caused by long conversations you’ve had with someone without really speaking to them. Or interactions that are beyond words and other such restrictions.
A drop of lime wont cut the hangover of a lingering smell.
There are song hangovers, author hangovers.
A line you’ve read in a book, phrases and words that will keep playing in your mind, cause some.
Trips to the mountains.
Accidentally discovered lanes.
Rainy days.

My longest ever is all thanks to Clint Eastwood in the Bridges of Madison County.
And don’t even think of offering a cure.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Talk to the stars.

Tell your story to a beetle when it rains. Exchange few words with an aged book. Chat up with a street dog. Gossip with a gold fish. Talk to froth before you blow it off. Share jokes with a bubble. Whisper to a tree trunk. Talk to a lonesome dew drop. Chat up with a butterfly. Speak to a creeper. Talk to the mike. Say ta to sign boards. Make conversations with old photographs. Have a word with those long letters. Call out to the walls. Talk to your playing cards. Argue with a tough question paper. Discuss life with God. Talk to the ceiling in the middle of the night. Reason out with a fat bill. Get in touch with the wanton wind. Complain to a shirt stain. Utter something to a blank screen. Fight with a videogame. Mutter something to a firefly, rain, and to your rag doll. Talk to an old wound.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

I'd like to

Travel and touch every wild flower ever grown

Learn to say ‘no’

Be fit

Learn to read and write in Urdu

Teach children in the mountains

Bungee jump

Stop trying to please everyone

A house atop a very tall building and enjoy the rain hitting against my windows. Own one in the mountains with bougainvilleas for company.

Read as many books and then open a book cum tea hut with those books and some fine tea. Then have long and heady conversations about authors of those books and passages from those books with complete strangers

Go without feeling unhappy or depressed or low for a month at a stretch

Visit the bridges in Iowa

Send mother father on a luxury holiday

Be a professional actor

Enjoy rice without guilt

Taste every brand of beer in the world and read up all the literature available on whiskeys

Write a few books

Write handwritten notes or letters to people I have wronged

Write handwritten letters or notes to people who have wronged me

Write a handwritten letter to my father

Buy my mother a house she always yearned for

Put photographs in order, preferably in a black scrap book and give titles

Learn to pull back

Own the best fragrances in the world


Let go

Resume Hindustani classical classes

Have a massive library at home

Soak in each and every piece, word, anything ever written by Gulzar

Read all the books ever written on magical realism

Figure out how I’m so good at making some of my dearest people uncomfortable just by being around. Change that

Attend a ‘mushaira’

Shoot a documentary on women living in brothels

Do a Delhi to Rishikesh on foot

A cycle ride with someone in the fields

Participate in a marathon every year

Own a telescope

Watch Ijazzat once every month till I die

Raise a child

Do a Greece, Morocco, Venice

Stop searching for happiness outside

Control my anger

Fall irreparably in love with someone, fall like I’ve never been hurt

Accept that mother father will eventually grow old

Find a guru

Read out my favourite passages to the one I will love enough to share them with

Hold hands

Make a film

Be comfortable with the way I look

Stop waiting

Name someone’s child

Say final good byes to a few people

Accept the unrequited

Have stimulating conversations during sunset

Raise plants

Take a guilt free long holiday from work

Get to know mother’s secrets and not judge her

Breed horses

Visit Kashmir

Live in Northeast

Stop making the same mistakes

Recognize patterns

Detox for a month, no drinking, no lying, no escaping, no outside food, no anger, no flirting, no nothing

Make my mentors proud

Settle down mentally and emotionally, not literally and socially

Gift my Dad the best scotch whiskeys in the world

Go fishing

Say no to denial

Say no to defense mechanism

Get another tattoo

Pray for my sisters

Know where to stop

Have zero debt

Keep increasing my collection of coasters, matchboxes, piggy banks

Learn pottery

Learn a craft and then pass it on

Pay attention to directions

Save money

See a past life therapist

Trek more

Seriously work on being a good listener

Remember that distance breeds strength

Stop looking for warmth

Stop making a mess of relationships