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Monday, September 28, 2009

Seasons of Love

Finally, here's the beginning of my second book. I am looking for publishers in the United States and India with aggressive marketing behavior. Please let me know if you have any suggestions for the same/feedback on the scrapped content.

Chapter 1: The Prequel

I have often wondered where this story began. It could have been the moment my mother conceived me after a cosmic thrust released all the potential 'me's into her but only one succeeded, and I came into existence. Or it could have been the first time she saw my father, resting on a sofa, with his right hand bent an angle on his forehead and his eyes closed. She knew she had been arranged to marry the eldest son of her English teacher. It was his first visit to his folks since the arrangement was made. The initial observation she had was, ‘He has such long eyelashes!’ She was 21, still in her undergrads. A girl of that age, at those coordinates of the universe, at that time, with no experience of the world, would have probably noticed only that.

It could, as well, have been the day my paternal grandfather was teaching a group of students and he suddenly fell ill. And while rest of the students sat still (probably wondering what to do), my mother rushed to his aid, trying her best to comfort him. That day my grandfather decided that she would be the wife of his first son, his eldest daughter-in-law. She often prides upon the fact that I got it from her- the willingness to serve.

Whatever the circumstances were that lead to my being born, I am here today. And this is my story...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Amor vincit Omnia

It is 12 more days before SG moves to Northern California to assume his new position at NASA Ames. I know I will be too busy with four courses in my final semester to miss him too hard, but it won’t be easy. I have often wondered whether we stop coveting what we see very often. I don’t know, but we are definitely prone to growing used to having some people around, so much so that we take their presence for granted. In that case, a little distance would be good. The trouble is – I think I will never get used to having him around.

It is not the first time that we will be away from each other. The initial months of our courtship witnessed a long-distance relation spanning across two continents. Nothing deterred it. I think that if you put your mind to it, a temporary separation doesn’t matter. And when it is for a future together, we should embrace the circumstances.

My immediate task list would be to preserve my 4.0 GPA and get a job in the West Coast. People often talk how about difficult it has become to find something suitable nowadays. I can’t agree completely.

There are two ways to live:
1) Quitting
2) Starting with renewed vigor every time you feel a little low.
I am choosing the later.

It was a special week. I celebrated my birthday in 4 phases. SG took me out to The Blue Man Group show at the Charles Play House on Sunday afternoon on the eve of my birthday. He played the perfect date demonstrating old age chivalry that I value so much in a man. He fetched me drinks, held my bag while I took my seat, clasped his hand in mine when it got scary. Throughout the evening, two girls kept constantly staring at us; I saw them through my peripheral vision and asked SG later: Do you know why they were looking at us with such covetous glances? He opined: Because you looked so beautiful. I propounded: Because they thought I am so lucky. And I relished the aftertaste of those words in my mouth.

I had started the day at 6 am, trying to prepare some lessons, cooked and finished some domestic chores before we went out and I was really tired by the end of the night. I dozed off as soon as 10:30 pm, taking the last call wishing me Happy Birthday in advance.

Around 12:02 am I woke up hearing some familiar voices. I have this habit of identifying people by the way the talk when they walk on the sidewalk below and past my window. I checked my phone to see 9 missed calls and I called back. In the meantime, my roommate came over to wish me.

Shef and DJ entered with a strawberry cheesecake – my next favorite after Tiramisu. Last year, Sejuti had got me one. A birthday feels so incomplete without a cake. I missed her this year, and I am looking forward to spending some time with her when she is through with her Qualifier.

The following day, I had my first Strategic Management class and I thought I’d keep it low this year, but my roommate suggested: Who stays by herself on a birthday? So, I emailed a few friends to have dinner at Olive Garden at 9 pm and then to meet at my apartment around 11 pm for the birthday cake.

It was a Monday, late for most working folks and given the usual timings of our classes (6pm to 8:45 pm), I wondered how many would really turn up. But I saw more people than I had expected to see at my apartment. It felt really great to have those beautiful people around. Shweta requested me to sing a song. I obliged, though the cold sparkling wine had set my voice heavy. The crowd hung around for a while and then dispersed wishing me again. I don’t remember when I fell asleep – still smiling.