Drowning yourself away…

The eight year old wept looking at his father’s disfigured body wrapped in whites. His father was his hero, but lately it all went wrong for him. He still hasn’t figured out what had happened to his family. For the past several weeks no one has laughed or even smiled in his family. The nights haven’t been peaceful like before. His house wasn’t the best place he knew anymore. It was screams and cries that had replaced the laughter; the nights were dreaded and his house was shadowed by pain and fear. He just stood there with watering eyes not knowing what to do and not realizing what was up for him next.

She screamed and cried in agony. The pain was excruciating and her world was collapsing around her. The soil beneath her was swept away by a wave of unfortunate play of fate. All the tears that she had shed for him weren’t just enough. Now he had presented her with something that she can cry on for the rest of her life. The hands in her shoulders failed to console her, the soothing words that flowed from everywhere did not even reach her ears. All she could think of the memories with him. The good times and the hard times. Somewhere she found herself responsible for what happened to him. And yet all she could do is scream and cry beside him.

She held her small weeping brother, with wet eyes she looked at her mother in deep pain and agony. She knew things were bad for them but she didn’t see this was to happen. Her father was strong, wasn’t he? He had tried this before and it was she who saved him. How could he leave them? How could he take such a decision so fast? Somewhere she also found herself responsible for this. She looked at her father and cried.

“He did it, brother. He left us.” the man heard this from the other end of the line. He sat there with a shattered heart. The man who tried to save him from the clutches of the wicked countryside spirits. The man who took him beyond the seas to an entire new world. The man who helped him built a new dream and restore faith in himself.

A call from him the day before played in her mind. He had thanked her and her family for trying to provide him with a new life. He thanked them for being there for him. And he even said goodbye to them all.

Years back he joined a company overseas and over the years he moved on ahead. He left for a better company, and life just seemed so beautiful. Decent money was pouring in and family back home was just happy. But one tiny bit of him was rotten. His love for alcohol. Alcohol was the villain in his story. The villain who successfully wrote a tragic end to his story. The story which could have been bright and inspirational. The story where he was with his wife and his sweet little kids.

Over sometime alcohol took complete control of him. No one knows why or where it all began. But everyone gathered there has very well realised that it has ended. He did try to come back to his life. He took efforts, he took baby steps towards sobriety, rehabilitation and medicines. But it all failed. Alcohol was just too strong for his mind. The magical poison just wouldn’t leave him of its hold. His actions were dictated by alcohol. He was slowly losing himself. Every morning he woke up with guilt and as the day went by he would again start craving for it to drown his fears and worries. His mind left from his control. He hit his wife, and even almost killed her. His children feared him. They left him and wouldn’t come back. Everyone looked at him with disgust and hopelessness. He might have found no reason to live anymore. He had burnt his own world and he has nowhere to go now. The only place that he thought would end all his woes and sorrows was the railway track. One early morning waking up with extreme guilt and hopelessness he decided to wrap it once for all. Leaving behind the two small children and a grief stricken wife, he left the world in a rather cruel and cold manner. He did not just kill himself but he killed the wife’s hope and faith on him, he killed the little child’s belief that his father is a hero, he killed his daughter’s hopes of a better world and good times ahead.

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Alcohol could drown your pains or could induce happiness in you but we all must realize that all what alcohol gives is short lived except for our actions and words influenced by it. The moment you let alcohol take control of your life, is the moment your downfall begins. Alcoholism not only takes your life but takes lives of those dependent on you.

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The wall that fate built.

# A high end luxurious car pulls by. It shines brightly like a ball hung on a Christmas tree. A chubby little boy steps out engrossed in swiping profusely on his phone while he took a big gulp from the can. The man in white and white shuts the door and follows the boy to the mall. She looks at him with dreamy eyes. She wipes off the sweat, carries her small sister and goes back to selling balloons. Little had she known that the fate had already built a wall for her!

#She watched them hug and kiss passionately. Their faces filled with emotions. He was back from war. She waited patiently for her turn. She could hug and kiss but she knew that she wouldn’t get any of those back. She watched them bring her husband in a box with the flag. She held her daughter tight and fought her tears. She knew she had to be stronger than the wall that the fate had built.

#He hugged her tight, close to his heart, for one last time. Anger and love. All the love for his daughter and all the anger for that god damn psycho who shot her down as she sat helplessly in her classroom. He lived rest of his life in suffocation within the wall. Suffocated by the anger, love and helplessness.

#He had gone to office that morning kissing her. She sat there staring at the coffin not knowing whom to curse – the fire or the fate. For the first time she questioned her dad’s decision to be a fire-fighter. For the first time she wished he wasn’t one. For the first time she saw the dreaded wall.

#Every morning he woke up early just to get his hands on the first copy of the newspaper. Just to be the first one to know that the missing aircraft was found and all its passengers were safe. Just to be the first one to know that his mother was alive. But his strength wasn’t strong enough to break the wretched wall.

#He looked at her and she faked a smile. They waved each other goodbye and logged off. It’s been a while since she had gone. She was stuck in a faraway land and was waiting to get back to him. He was waiting to hold her in his arms again. But both of them knew they were never going to meet again because they know the wall had already been built.

Fate is really a funny thing. Some say “There is nothing called fate as such! We make our fate!” but I certainly believe in it. It exists and it’s dreadful (not always). All along our life fate builds such walls stopping us from moving ahead. So what shall we do when we meet such walls? We gather all our strength, have some faith in ourselves and try to break the wall. And that is the only way to move on in your life.
“Fate is never fair. You are caught in a current much stronger than you are; struggle against it and you’ll drown not just yourself but those who try to save you. Swim with it and you’ll survive.”
Cassandra Clare, City of Ashes.

The Lord and His ways.

I am up earlier than usual. It’s close to 5 in the morning, my sleep all gone and am wide awake. Maybe I am just excited about the long day ahead. A lot of things to be done – meeting old school pals, couple of mentors and close teachers, checking out my old hang outs. I lay on my bed waiting for my alarm to go off. At a distance I can hear the hymns from the church and the call for namaz from the mosque go together. It felt great to be back in my room where I spent the major part of my teenage life. Every wall in the room had bits of papers stuck – posters, write-ups, handmade calendars. The place was a mess when I came in last night. Books of my last five years’ education were all over the place. Getting into college excited me a lot that I never bothered to clean up my room. Well, cleaning my room was never a part of my to-do list even when I was jobless let alone when packing for college.
            Am all dressed up, after a quite contending shower, unlike the hurried ones before college. The climate outside was fabulous. It gets sticky towards the middle of the day but at this time of the day it was cool and there was a sign of a crisp wind, just enough to ruffle my hair. It is just ten minutes away from my place. The roads are empty. The whole place is silent except for the occasional noises made by the early buses plying through the road. The usual nostalgic feel hit me hard – birds chirping, smell of the rain – cliché it is but it does help bring up the mood. Certain things can only be appreciated when you have experienced the opposite. After spending a long time in a place filled with smokes and vehicles and your life being busy and noisy, it didn’t take a long while for me to appreciate where I was right now.
       I have always wanted to write about this place I was going to – this temple. I first came to this temple around 7 years back. It was just a small structure and not many worshippers came here then. This temple was one of those which were owned by the rulers of the place ages back. So the history says that every royal family got to keep their own temple where no one from outside was allowed to enter. It was strictly for the benefit of the royal family and only they were allowed to offer prayers there. As time went by, royal families diminished and they found it hard to maintain the temples on their own. There were no more royal families or their temples. Such temples were opened for all. This was the latest temple to be opened for public in such a way.
              As I near the temple, I walk through the memory lane. It reminded me of the times when I used to speed down in my bicycle, how I used to rush here before I go to school for my major exams. This temple has got me going through the hardest times. The walls and pillars know me better than my family maybe. They have seen my struggle with my inner-self, with my insecurities, with my fears. They have heard many things that no one in my life has ever heard from me. The Lord of this temple with whom I have confided many of my secrets has always been there performing miracles for me.
        This temple has grown into what it is today. Now it has a wide footpath running around it, a nicely finished paint job, beautiful mural sculptures on the wall, and a big framed image of the proposed design of the renovated temple. There aren’t many people when I went in, maybe a bit too early for the regular folks. Just a couple of old women and an old gentleman. The manager of the temple is amused to see me. He does his usual round of enquiries – my college and the place and how long it has been since I paid a visit. Although things have changed around here the L
ord hasn’t. The same all-knowing smile and the same gracious look that could drown all your worries.
         All my atheists friends have asked me how one could connect to a lifeless figure or a statue and my answer was always the same. Its way easier to connect to a statue than all the other living beings.
I sit there for a while talking to Him, as though two old friends catching up after a long time. I could hear one of the old ladies chanting a long Sanskrit prayer slowly. I head back to home. On my way back I realize that all our wishes die soon and we find ourselves back where we started with a new set of wishes. I was here few years back wishing to get into the college where I am studying now. And when I am almost done with it am back here again. While I have changed a lot of my beliefs and thoughts why couldn’t I ever forget this small temple? Is my greed the reason why I am here today or is it the Lord’s way of keeping me closer to Him? Well I guess I’ll never know.

Two sides of the story

Shopping time with dad !!! So what, can’t dad and son go for shopping ! Dad was leaving to our home town and we had to please many of our relatives back home with souvenirs -like daily usable souvenirs. It is still believed that things from outside stands above anything in our own place. Foreign goods are always welcomed with open arms, may it be durables or consumables, for a matter of fact even foreign made human beings! The belief is that things are quite cheap and are of a better quality when it is from a foreign nation. I never knew people could have such a low self esteem. Come on, we are the second largest community in the world and why would anyone want to sell us anything of poor quality. We are one of the biggest markets they have, if ever they are producing anything of higher quality it is us whom they are going to sell first. But trying talking this into their heads we become misers of the three worlds! So we don’t take much pain explaining the current world scenarios to them, we simply buy stuffs for them.

Every person who lives outside the country for a livelihood shall be prepared to face a set of questions when he/she comes to his/her hometown.

“Ahh…when did u reach?”

“Ooohhkay..when are you leaving?” this question that perturbs every human on vacation would be asked on the day 1.

“So what did you get for me?” this question is seasoned with a blatant smile.

Well what am going to write is not about any of this. Going back to the story, so we were there shopping in the stores and all of a sudden dad forgets what he had to get one of the relatives so we had to call mom and ask. Since me and dad went to the stores after our evening walk we hadn’t taken our phones. Dad asked me to use the store’s phone to call mom up and ask. I walked down the racks and when I reached where the store had placed the phone I find it is already being used by another person. I decided to wait for there sometime but it was too awkward to wait there starring at the person talk. So I started checking out the things around. I almost finished one whole side of the store an the guy is still on the phone and it got me thinking like “ What did he forget to get ? His telephone bill ?” I furiously walked away from there and found dad still trying to choose between two tees for an uncle of mine. He looked at me and asked what took me long and I told about the never ending telephone call that was going on out there. He smiled and went back to deciding which tee to choose. After few minutes, I decided to check if he was done calling and from far I saw him placing the phone back on the receiver and it hit me like rain hit the broke Indian farmers. I ran towards the phone like the hero runs towards the heroine who escaped from her own father’s captivity (talking about bollywood movies..). But things turned ugly, (now slow motion ) the same guy picked the phone again and dialed another number. I was speechless and tired. I just stared at him and was ready to leave when he saw me. He gestured asking me if I wanted to use the phone and I nodded. He gave me an embarrassed smile and cut the call and left. I wanted to say “Dude this phone is for emergency and not for people to call their friends and family” but didn’t feel like to. I just called mom, clarified everything and went back to shopping.

When I was walking back home I kept on thinking about this person. I was thinking about how cheap he was to use the stores phone to make long calls and that and this. But somewhere along this thought came this question- what if there was another side to the story? What if he was trying to save some cash to make enough cash to pay his father’s hospital bills back home or what if he was saving up to pay his daughter’s school fees? Maybe he was talking to his daughter and she could have been telling him about where she wants to do college and stuffs. I who hated this guy a minute ago felt sorry for him.

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What I learned from this is no matter how ugly a person’s actions can be, it might have an explanation that a human heart could understand. I don’t know if my version of his story was right but I felt happy and good believing it that way. It is always easy to judge people out of anger and frustration that fumes out of our heads but try thinking the other way round. It wouldn’t do much good to the person whom you judge but it will definitely do good to you. Your heart becomes more human, more beautiful and more happy. The more human you are the more caring you will be. The more beautiful you are more lovely you will be. The more happy you are the more longer you will live.

Live like a five year old …..

The weekend is here, no plans in my house. Dad and mom have reached that age where you just wanna sit at home and watch some TV. Spend their only day off relaxing at home. They find happiness in here- “If you can’t relax and be happy at your home with your family, then you will never relax or find happiness anywhere on earth.” said a popular bollywood actor in a movie.

I couldn’t sit at home any longer. My body longed for some fresh air, I decided to go out for a walk. It was almost 15 minutes past 9 as I strolled down the park. There were a bunch of kids playing football. They were in various football club jerseys and boots and all other paraphernalia for football. They were happy and carefree. The first thing that I thought was “What are they doing in the park at this time?” before I realized it was a weekend. I stood there looking at them playing carefree and I really missed that.

football-player-clipart-bcyE9oygiI remember my days when I used to play till early night during the weekends. It was so much fun because we didn’t have to think of getting up the next day for school, or about any homeworks left. When we end the day’s game we would completely be contented and would be just as happy as the beginning of the game unlike the other days. I looked at them and I could only wish to go back to those days, when there were no expectations on us, when life was simple. We either wanted to be a policeman or a pilot (that was back then, kids nowadays want to be aerospace engineer what we called rocket scientist back in our days!) Well don’t get me wrong here reading all this, I am just a 20 year old. But yet I want to go back to my childhood, it happens to all of us. We all want to be young, go back to the past -maybe out of regret, or due unquenchable desire of going to the good old happy days. You come across this desire at least once in your lifetime, I can assure you that.

Today, for me the idea of success is much different, it is higher and a lot of thought has to be put in. When you were a child, to achieve success, all you needed to do was to work hard. But as you grow older its not only about the hard work element, it is also about the decisions we make in order to achieve your goal. We solely become responsible for all the events in our lives, this is when the word ‘regret’ creeps into our heads. When we fail, we regret of not choosing the alternate, not choosing the other path. The regrets pushes us to the deep pits of depression and frustration, and makes us older than we are. The regret makes us people who we are not. It blinds us from seeing the good part of the life and attracts more regret. If ever I could learn how to live life like a 5 year old…

THE HARDSHIP OF INTERSHIP

Do you remember those days when you were a kid and you made a lot of trouble, your mom would give you crayons and a sheet of paper so that you could scribble something and she would get some peace of mind. That my friends is the earliest version of internship in your life. The whole concept of internship is built on this idea.
Have you ever felt like the most important man on earth, the need of the hour, like superman! If yes, its time that you apply for an internship. An internship not only makes you feel the most useless and unwanted person in the whole of the universe but also makes you start doubting your existence.

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Now moving on to a poem written by an intern.
Note to readers – this poem is written by a commerce graduate who has no prior experience in poetry. The only poem he knows good is twinkle twinkle little star. Do not expect usage of high end vocabulary.

Poet’s note
Hey all,
Before any one reads my poem I want you all to know that this is my first time and I have no prior experience ( that’s the second time I am using that sentence. First time was for the interview.) Internship has pushed me to the deepest heights of boredom that I have started poetry. Please excuse me if I fail the rules of poetry.

To all the suffering interns…

Internship

I am sitting here looking at you,
My dear statement of profit and loss !
I did talk to the boss,
Everyone is busy it seems;
What a loss !
Two sheets of paper
With digits all over .
“Work it out and find if anything is wrong !
It can’t be done later,
And it shouldn’t take long !”
But then I did this in KG (kindergarten)!
I move to take coffee.
You know, here coffees are free !
But everyone looks at me,
I know I have already had three,
But that doesn’t mean u can judge me!
The coffee is good,
But a little more cream wouldn’t have harmed !
Joblessness in this office, I am alarmed !

I am done with this job denial

If ever I get any- it is menial
Couple of months more,
This is going to be bad,
This is going to be sad,

I willend up being mad,

The internship……. !

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The Smartphone Dream.

Like any other day I sat on the couch sliding through my facebook wall and watching a movie in TV simultaneously (we excel in multi-tasking just like the new age mobile processors). While I sit there with my eyes fixed in the phone and my ears dedicated to the movie, my ears come across couple of interesting ads on the TV. So am going to talk about it and share my thought.

India is renowned for accommodating high number of telecom service providers. You see, it’s kinda funny, since the telecom market in India is highly competitive and involves a considerable degree of government intervention these service providers cannot start price wars and hence the only way to woo customers is through their appalling ads.

The first ad goes like this- This ad is to promote the telecom service providers called ‘IDEA’. They brought out this amazing *sarcastic cough* concept called IIN which basically stands for Idea Internet Network. They claim that the youngsters in the country can stop going to educational institutions and pursue their academic dreams through their IIN. So in the ad we are shown two youngsters sitting on a hillside.Let us name them A and B for our – mmh- my convenience. A seems to be holding a brochure of some hotel management school. B then says that his father isn’t financially strong enough to send him to a hotel management school. Now A throws the brochure high up in the air and kind of screams with utmost confidence “We don’t have to go to school to study!”  B curiously asks “What? Then how?” and then the other one takes out his smart phone and says “We will study through IIN!” I sit there staring at all this mockery. Man, when I wanted to join college, I went through an enormous number of colleges in India and made research like report and showed it to my parents and they did their own researching and we all together finalized a college. It almost took me a whole month. As far as I know Indian parents are the only mammals on earth so deeply interested in their offspring’s life. In such an environment how on earth would two INDIAN boys set out to study from a mobile network that too an Indian mobile network. You know what is funny about Indian mobile networks, they are like BATMAN, can never predict its arrival, except Batman had a working bat‘SIGNAL’. As the ad moves along, we find that the two boys have started figuring out the As and Bs of cooking from internet using the IIN and they rent out the terrace of an old building and start all their practical tests there. And one fine day they decide that they are good enough to start their own restaurant (on the same terrace). Now the old terrace looks like a million dollar villa’s terrace and I have no idea how they did that (maybe they learned that too from IIN). And the funniest part-uh nah- this is the second funniest part- we see foreign customers! Have you got any idea how long it takes to get a foreign customer especially for restaurants in India. I have been to places where they hang pictures of foreigners who have come there. Indians have deep respect and awe for foreigners, then why did we ask them to leave India in the first place O.o? The foreign woman asks for some dish which obviously our IIN chef did not know how to prepare. He Googles it out!! He finds it and cooks it- the point to be noted is that he didn’t know the dish at all in the beginning and hence he hasn’t made it even for once and then he makes it right in the first try. Well I am not making any comparisons and all but I took a week to learn how to make a proper burger! Forget that part let us move on. Now ladies and gentlemen presenting to you the most funniest part of the ad- the two boys they get to be in the cover page of a magazine following which they get the ‘’BEST HOTEL AWARD’. I didn’t know it was this easy to get an award in hospitality. I bet the owners of various restaurants and hotels would have lost their cool after seeing this ad. The sad part is that the service providers believe that they can actually woo the customers by such awful ads.

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Now the second one – this one is less ridiculous as compared to the first one. This ad belongs to AIRTEL. The ad starts with portraying a young guy who seems to be a travelling places on his motorcycle. Well travellers usually travel to places they have never been to but our guy is here at his home town. Well can’t completely criticize that, preferences of travellers varies. Moving on, the guy sees an old man selling ice creams in his old cart.  He (young guy) suddenly takes his smart phone and starts recording the video of the old man. Soon there is a group chat among his friends (supposedly school friends). Now let us meet the friends. When the guy calls them, a lady is shooting (she is behind the camera) something in a forest like area, there is another guy who is in navy uniform, and a corporate guy in shirt and tie. They all are surprised to see the old man. They all come down to their old school where our first guy says he met the old ice cream man. They wait for the old fellow to come, and as he comes they call out “Uncle!” and the old guy turns to look at them, he stares at them. The ageing has mildly affected his memory. Then each shout out the money they owe to him. He smiles at them and says “No more loans for you all”. They shout out “We are not here for loans, we are here to repay it!” Then a huge red bus is seen with UNCLE’S ICE CREAM written on its sides in huge white letters and an image of the old guy. Well very touchy isn’t it. Basically the story is that the gang used to hang out having ice creams from this old guy (who wasn’t old then-duh!) and they owed him some amount each, and they are here to return all that along with some generous interest. All the viewers after seeing this would have wished to have given them loans when they were kids!! This has got a very cute and touching storyline but the reality is if we had such people around this world would have been a really great place to live in. What I think would have been more acceptable is that maybe they all going down to that place and meeting him and paying him something extra rather than buying him a whole new huge truck. How is he going to maintain it now? Am not being too much of a critic but we live in a world where kids don’t have time to spend with their parents, that’s a fact and we got to face it. In such a world people, that too people with high profile jobs keep all their work aside to meet this old man. But I have to admit this one is much better than the former one discussed.

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After seeing this ads I still am sitting on the couch staring at my phone, but I am not staring at any posts or any wall, just at my phone and am thinking “They show me this piece of thing can make so many differences, but I have seen no one using it that way. All I see outside day in and day out is people walking around looking into these, people driving around looking into these, people talking to each other looking into these. Well what do I trust now.” And I myself figure out the answer for it, I picked this up from my brother “A technology’s use cannot be generalized, it depends on the user! A wise one makes wise use of it while a foolish one uses it for foolish purposes!”

Well now that’s done with, I continue to scroll down facebook posts and watch– uh sorry- hear the movie.