Thursday, January 29, 2009


We will make mistakes.
We are only human.
It would be wonderful if we could have a perfect life, never do things we later regretted. Never hurt the people who cared about us, and were never hurt by them.
Unfortunately that means we would only interact with god and his saints, and we are currently living on planet earth.
Learning to forgive oneself for our mistakes is one of the greatest gifts we will ever give ourselves.
Learning to forgive another, when its the most difficult thing we can imagine doing, is the greatest gift we can give to them.
It can also be the absolute best thing we can do for ourselves.
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Thursday, January 22, 2009


Rejection/Failure sucks, never trying is always worse.
Love is difficult, it is painful, and there are always things that will go wrong.
Love will make you hurt worse then you ever imagined you could.
Love will make you crazy, blind, and more then you ever imagined you could be.
Love is not supposed to be easy.
If it were, it wouldn't be appreciated the way it is.
Love is supposed to be difficult.
We are social creatures.
Our children are our links to the future.
Our parents are our guides to the past.

I regret the guys I never got to know better because they didn't feel the way I felt about them. I despise myself for the guys I never got to know as well as I would have liked because I was too scared to try to tell them how I felt about them. I've have made a large number of excuses and justifications for why I didn't tell the guys I cared for the way I felt about them. "They wouldn't have felt the way I did." "They were happier just as friends." "It would have wrecked what I already had with them, and I wanted to keep them around." These were all nice little excuses, but they were really just letting me let fear control my life.

When I gave up getting fearful of failure I ended up being proud of a moment when I told someone I cared about them. After that I've never regretted exposing myself to the risk of rejection. I've never been ashamed of trying to be more then I was. Because that's what love is.

Its attempting to forge a better person in yourself, by connecting to another person in a way different then no one else ever will again. Every love I've ever had has made me grow as a woman. Has made me happier as woman. Has made me braver, stronger, more convinced in the inherent decency of man. Now I probably wouldn't have said that at the time.

There were times that I was sure love was going to suck me up and spit me out, and I've played it conservative. I've seen people who treat love as an excuse to hurt others, or try to patch up their own hurts. This isn't them loving anyone, not even themselves. This is them crying out in the dark for help, for someone else to save them. They don't realize that they have to help themselves. But overall, love is divine.

It is the ultimate exposure of oneself. It is risk, all of who you are, for judgement by another. It is the only time we are really alive. And you can have fun, alone. But you are alive, really alive, when you connect with another. These people you connect with can be friends, confidants, as close as sisters to you. But it is only when you offer your whole heart, your whole soul, your own being, that you are alive. And its a hell of a rush.

There will be more failures then successes. There will be great heartache. But if you are not loving, with your entire soul, you are not alive yet. You are merely surviving. There is a fine line between living and surviving. So live just dont survive, no matter if it results in a failure/rejection. At least you lived!!!!!!!!

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009


People often ask me "Why did you become a dentist?" Why not a 'real doctor'?" (what does that mean now???? Am I an 'unreal' doctor??? whatever!!!!!!)

I, and many of my colleagues are often stumped when asked why we had chosen to be someone disliked by so many people (a misconception I told myself) involved in "poking around inside other people's mouths." Some people kindly added that I probably did noT get through the medical college (totally untrue). Or it was better than doing architecture or BBA (what a comparison), at least I get to be called as a doctor!!! aaarrrghhh!!!!!

But whatever explanations you give, people still express a mystifications to why anyone would want to do it (dentistry that is). I usually reply that the reality of being a dentist was completely different from my perception of being a dentist (whatever that means) and hope that they will not probe further.

Yet, this question always hits me. Why did I choose dentistry as my profession? In college, I used to have great discussions with my college mates as to why we had chosen dentistry and the recollections of those admissions (more honest than I usually tell strangers) were a desire to control our working lives, an interest in working with our hands (just like an artist, a sculptor. We are artists, sculptors as a matter of fact. But that some other day), the satisfaction of treating a patient almost entirely ourselves and most of all , the financial freedom we assumed dentistry would give us.

I still stand by those very same reasons that I had during my college days. But the more deeper I started getting into private practice, I found many more reasons to love dentistry. I realized I lovedd the science behind it. There is an engineering skill, a scientific skill and lots of artistic skill involved in dentistry. There is never a dull day in dental office. There is always a need for continuing education. You can never rest on your laurels after finishing your degree. So there is always a challenge. It is a very exciting occupation. The relief you see on the patient's face after a good job is something which money can never buy. I wouldn't trade it for anything in this world. I love being a dentist and I look forward to each and every day at the dental office.

And apart from all the reasons why I adore being a dentist is that it always lets me come back to my first passion - writing.
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Monday, January 19, 2009


I have reached a stage in my life where everyone around me is:

1. married.
2. getting married.
3. planning to get married.

I go to my workplace and most of my collegues are married (some even have kids). It gets very difficult to relate to them when they talk about domesticity and household stuff. My two best friends are married and the topic of our conversation is always about my marriage. Even though they are my best friends, they sometimes get on my nerves when they start pestering me. I mean I am happy for them because they are happy this way, but other than that nothing makes me happy about the whole situation. The question, "When are you getting married?" is the bane of my life. The more I run away from it, the more it chases me!!!!

And the more I am questioned about this, the more I want to scream at the top of my lungs that have not scheduled my marriage, my future as yet. And I am genuinely not losing sleep over it.

One day I asked my sister (who of course is married) that why is everybody around me so bothered about my marriage, she just smiled and told me that people in our part of the world start thinking that something is wrong with the girl, if she isnt engaged or married by late twenties. Something is off, definitely, that the matrimonnal alliance has not taken place as yet.

That got me thinking!!!!!! Why do so many people share this point of view? Even my peers and friends. Dont we all belong to the same generatiuon? Shouldnt we give priority to our career and financial independence? In the age where so many marriages are ending up in divorces, shouldn't we take our time and make sure we arent rushing into anything. If making a rational decision and taking time to choose my life partner delays my marriage for some time more, so be it. I'm glad its happening this way.

I realize I live in a society where marriage is seen as the be all and end all of a girls life, but not everyone around here or people I know marry young. Are they also subjected to this same question?????

And its not that everyone who got married ended up happily ever after. I have seen some bitter breakups and ugly divorce battles which follow. But at the same time, I have seen some beautiful marriages and couples living out their dreanms. That what gives me encouragement (because that is what I want) and the guts to face this question from the world.

So while I'm still taking time, , I suppose I’m going to just fend off this questions with a smile and a laugh, reassuring family, colleagues and acquaintances that no, there is nothing wrong with me, my horoscope or my kismet. I am just moving forward at my own pace in that general direction, and I am OK with that. And that’s what really matters. And the day that I do decide to get married, the world and its sister will know it. So let it be, for the time being at least.
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Sunday, January 18, 2009


Love and lust are inextricably intertwined. Lust is ground zero for hormones -- it's nature's way of bringing the opposite sexes together to mate. In fact, without lust, it's doubtful that love between a man and a woman would have a chance to prosper at all.The driving force of the sexual imperative bridges the gap between the almost incompatible brain styles of the two sexes. So lust can be seen as one end of a broad continuum, which may or may not culminate in romantic love.And love is the most ennobling of human emotions -- transcendental, exalted and capable of engendering emotional states, which can make the male of the species "want to be a better man."
Men fight wars over lust, but they make homes and families for love.
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Thursday, January 15, 2009


The night was very dark, and it looked like storms were rolling in fromthe distance. Sarah was a waitress at a local roadstop cafe right off the highway. She worked the night shift, and liked it because there was hardly everanyone who stopped in that late at night. And Sarah didn't feel very comfortable around people.

About 5 years ago, Sarah was in a terrible fire and one side of her facewas burned very bad. The surgeons did everything they could to repair the damage, but it was just to severly burned. It left great scars and made her left eye look higher than the right one. She was very self-conscious and didn't feel good around people.

People always seemed to stare at her like she was a freak. She actually was a very lovely young woman before the accident, but itwas hard to tell now with all the disfiguring that had happened to her face. She preferred to be lonely over all the stares that people gave her. She hated the stares, and had almost become a recluse because of them. The disfigurment had caused her to be bitter and angry, most of thetime. She lived by herself, and stayed by herself except when she worked. The night shift was perfect for her, because there was hardly ever anyone around except the night cook, and he was near-sighted, so he didn't see the disfiguration very clearly.

On this particular night, a young lady was driving home from work, whenthe rain started to come down in big downpours. She looked off the highway and saw a sign that said "Rafa's Roadside Cafe". She decided to pull into this cafe and wait there until the rain had passed. She had never been to this little cafe before, even though she had passed it coming home from work for many years. For some reason tonight, the cafe just drew her to it.

She went into the cafe and took a seat at a small table. She saw thewaitress behind the counter, but she had her back turned, filling salt shakers, so Mira could not see her face, right then. Mira waited for a few minutes, and the waitress didn't bother to acknowledge that she was there. Mira finally said "excuse me, could i get a cup of coffee miss"? Sarah started pouring the cup of coffee and took it to the table whereMira was sitting.

Sarah was thinking, to herself, here we go again with the stares. But, to her amazement, Mira didn't give any reaction whatsoever, except to say "thank you for the coffee". The coffee was good and hot. Just what she needed after being in that cold rain tonight. Sarah walked back behind the counter and finished filling the salt shakers. For some reason she was drawn to Mira because she had not seemedalarmed by her face. She went back to the table and asked her if she could get her anything else. Mira told her she was just waiting for the storm to blow over, and then she would be heading for home.

The two women got to talking, and before they knew it an hour had past, and Mira said she had to be going. They said goodbye and she left. When Sarah went home that night she thought of the kind lady she had mettonight. She liked her, and wished she would come back again. It had been so long since she had really felt comfortable talking to anyone.

As it was, the next night Mira stopped in again after work for somecoffee. When Sarah saw her she rushed right over to the table with a piping hot cup of coffee. They talked even longer this night. Time passed, and Mira became a regular at the cafe. She really liked Sarah and enjoyed their talks. Sarah was always looking for Mira each night. It was the bright spot ofher day. In a matter of weeks they had become fast friends. They liked each others company very much.

Then a couple of weeks went by and Mira did not come to the cafe. Sarah was sad, as she had so looked forward to seeing Mira every night. A couple of weeks later, Mira appeared again one night. Sarah was so happy to see her friend again. They hugged and sat down for a good chat. She asked Mira where she had been, and Mira began to tell her that she had a bad heart and was waiting for a donor. The doctor had told her a couple of weeks ago that her heart was not going to hold out much longer without a organ transplant. That is why Mira had not been to the cafe or to work. She was just getting to weak anymore.

Sarah could not believe it, as her friend was so beautiful, and lookedso healthy. They talked for hours, it seemed, and then Mira said she had to go and rest. Her heart was so weak that she had hardly any strength anymore.

Two days later, sarah got in a car accident. She was hurt very badly and was rushed to the hospital. She was badly mangled by the truck that had smashed into her cab. The doctor said she was not going to make it. He said the injuries were just too severe. Sarah lay in the hospital bed and thought, so this is how it is going to end? Nothing has been accomplished with my life, and now I am going to die alone. She felt sorry for herself for a little while, and then she faced the fact that she was going to die.

It was time to make things right, while she still had time. She lay in that bed for days, barely hanging on to life, and she had plenty of time to think. She missed her friend Mira, and wondered if she would miss her when she was gone. She was so sad and alone. She prayed she would just go ahead and die and get it over with.

Meanwhile, her friend Mira was asking about where Sarah was. She had been to the cafe and Sarah was not there. The old cook finally told her about her and which hospital she was in. Mira rushed out of the cafe and went to see her friend. Their reunion was sweet, as they had grown to care so much for each other in this short time.

When Mira saw her friend, she knew there was not much time left. Sarah looked like the life was being pulled right out of her. She had tubes and wires all around her, and she looked so pale. Sarah looked at her friend and said "I have been praying you would come and see me". Then she told Mira, "I have something to tell you". Mira told her, "I came as soon as I heard, is there anything in this world I can do for you?" Sarah told her friend, "No, but, I can do something for you, my friend". Mira asked her, "What do you mean"? Something for me? It is you laid up here with such terrible injuries, and you want to do something for me? What a wonderful friend you are, but, there is nothing I need. Sarah looked at Mira and said, "Yes, there is something that you need,very much, and I am able and willing to give it to you".

Mira shook her head and said "What are you talking about Sarah"? Sarah looked at her friend and told her that since she was dying, that she wanted to donate her heart to Mira. She said, she felt their two hearts were connected somehow since the first time they met. Mira started crying and crying, and couldn't say anything for a moment.Then she told her friend that was the nicest gift anyone could ever give, but she couldn't let her do that.

Sarah told Mira she had already arranged with the doctor and the hospital that when she died that her heart was to go to her special friend Mira. This was a special day for both of these women. They had met and been drawn to each other in life, and now through death they would still be connected.

Sarah died two days later, and her heart was transplanted into Mira, as Sarah had planned. The transplant was a success. Mira could not go to Sarah's funeral, as she was recovering from her own operation, but as soon as she was well enough, she went to Sarah's grave and stood alone and thought of her "most special friend". She put her hands over her new heart and said "Thank you, my friend for being part of my heart".

The day these two ladies met was not by accident. God sent them to each other with a plan in mind. God knew exactly how this would turn out.
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Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Two friends, living in two different time zones, chatting on gtalk or yahoo with a solitary phone call now and then. Each one busy in their own world with less and less common topics to talk about.
A typical coversation between the two:
First friend: hi there
Second friend: hello
First friend: how's life????
Second friend: great, going on!!!!!
First friend: Kaam vaghera
Second friend: bus going on. how's life????
First friend: good yaar!!!!!

The conversation reaches a dead end as both of them are thinking what to say next. Suddenly from both the sides come the words or the variants like "aur sunao??? what else???? whats happening???"
now isnt this common with most of us??? how many times have we strutted and stammered over a converaation like this when we have run out of words. Whenever we dont have anythinh to say, we pass the buck over to the other person and wait. What does AUR SUNAO, WHAT ELSE actually mean. It just means tell me something new about what is happening in your life or something that I heard from someone but want to hear from your mouth.
-when are you getting married?
-when are you getting a pay rise?
-how is your love life?
-when are you leaving your partner?
- when did you get hitched?
in short gimme the gossip babe!!!!!

So dear friends, followers and visitors and everyone who is reading the post

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Sunday, January 11, 2009


Another talk show!!!!yawwwnnnnn!!!!!A host of celebrities!!!what's new?????Wannabe stars performimg on stage!!!!baaahhh.........Nerdy jokes!!!!so downmarket...........Wise cracks at fellow celebrities!!!!!totally LS I tell you..............

When Simi Garewal entered our living rooms via the idiot box, it was a treat for our sore eyes. The first of its kind, 'Rendevouz with Simi Garewal' was not only a chat show, it was a place where celebrities bared their hearts. The lady in white managed not only to capture the hearts of her guests but also us, the viewers. Since then, lots of people have burnt their fingers while tryinf to host a talk show, the latest being Farhan Akhtar (the less said about him, the better). KJo did manage to do a decent outing (but then most of the guests were his personal friends). And lets not even talk about Koel Purie. (dont want to waste my precious blog space on her!!!!!).

So when I heard about a new talk show on NDTV Good Times, I was like yeah right. Why dont we talk about something new. I was really not going to watch another talk show. And I did miss the first episode of it very gladly so coz I dont get NDTV good times on my set. But then on monday morning, I was greeted with a barrage of smses asking me if I did see 'The First Ladies' hosted by Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla. I was literally forced to search for online videos of the show and I managed to watch the first and second episodes featuring Nita Ambani and Jaya Bachhan on the same day that is last night. And what I saw surprized me completely. Here's a quick post mortem of the show that promised to be different and it delivered rightly so!!!!!

Making a quiet debut on the television are India's well known designer duo Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla with "The First Ladies". The show aptly titled zooms into the lives of 12 women with a powerful surname, who have backed their men all the way. The wives, who sustain, inspire and of course share the exalted status and heady success of their super achiever husbands.

The show has a well laid out format and presentation. Abu and Sandeep have designed the sets themselves keeping the theme in mind. The ambience of the set is perfect keeping the status of the guests in mind. Thankfully there are no distractions like prformances and spoofs which seem to be a staple feature in other talk shows. This is purely, truly speaking a talk show where the guests talk about love. life, marriage and what makes them tick. The focus is completely on the guest. It is a conversation style interview and the hosts are clearly seen enjoying listening to their guests.

The show also has some sections like 'Hooked, Booked and Cooked' , 'Confession Time' (in this section , the lights dim out creating the perfect atmosphere for the guests to confess their naughtiest deeds), 'Quick Grills' , 'Qustion Time with Friends' and "Who's the Boss? (my favourite where the hosts ask a flurry of questiond and decides who calls the shots at home).

Coming to the guests, Nita Ambani was the perfect first guest to kick start this show. You get to see Nita as you have never seen her before. The First lady of Indian Corporate, she takes her name and success in her stride and clearly loves being referred to as "Mukesh's wife". The brain behind Reliance Retail and chairperson of Dhirubhai Ambani International school, Nita Ambani takes her role as a educationist very seriously. In the show, on being asked if there was one thing which she always wanted to do, but could not do it by none other than SRK, she says honestly that she wished she could have pursued dance which was her true vocation. A small AV sent by Mukesh revealed how much he looked upto Nita both as a wife and a partner. And one thing you always notice about her is the serene calmness on her face. you have to give thelady full marls for her graciousness and poise. Like Sandeep said 'she is the most envied lady in the country'.

Jaya Bachchan,who was the second guest, on the other hand was a nice change after the serious Nita Ambani in the first episode. Jaya is known for her witty responses, tongue-in-cheek humour and vivaciousness. And the camaradrie she shares with the hosts was evident as the actress sports mostly Abu -Sandeep ensembles and happen to be her favourite designers. Jaya talks about her marriage with AB, the life they share together and their roles as parents while remaining true to their passion in life - acting. On being asked which role she clearly enjoys today - daughter, wife, mother or grandmother by Maharani Padmini Devi of Jaipur, Jaya was at her candid best when she replied - of course, grandmother. no responsibility! A politician and actor par excellence she gives out the recipe for a perfect marriage. Catch her on the episode where Jaya reveals how she fell in love with India's superstar!!!!!

The hosts, Abu and Sandeep, are a nice change from the bollywood celebrities. They do not come with any pre conceived notions about their guests. Sandeep is clearly more verbal, talkative and vociferous than Abu who takes a quiet back seat as he lets his partner do most of the interview. Sandeep and Abu are completely at ease with their role as hosts and are not at all over awed by their famous guests. They held the fort quite comfortably and for not once did I feel that they were first time hosts.

All in all a wonderful watch. I am looking forward to all the episodes of this refreshing chat show where the wives bare it all, where one can expect "witty repartee and refreshing candour" with the hosts.

Friday, January 9, 2009


This is my Country; no one may enter without my express permission.

My Country is a place where I can explore my inner feelings withoutprejudice, without fear of rejection. I can wander freely through hidden corners of my mind. Lurk among the shadows of long forgotten memories.

The only thing that can limit me is myself, my own fears, and in this country that I have created, I can confront those dark shadows, face the ghouls of the past that still haunt me and conquer them. Each time I turn a corner I can reflect on my past as I stare into the abyss that is limitless in it’s depth. This is the core of my country, the core of my being, the reason I exist, to learn, to grow and to nurture this abyss.

My country sprawls across all continents, encompasses and welcomes all new cultures. The staple diet of my country is diversity and new ideas. Without this diet my Country would surely starve. Each time I stoop to drink from the fountain of knowledge my country grows. Whenever I encounter a new traveller in my country I learn and grow.

My country has no right or wrong, no morality, no given society to holdme back. Here I can be a true individual. I can dress how I wish. Observe anyone I want and converse with any one on any subject that interests me. I make my own laws, my own choices and can exile those that I choose to. I police my own state of mind; I am my own pyshician. I can help absorb the pain of the people that visit my country but cannot absolve them of their guilt anymore than they can absolve me of mine.

This country of mine is still evolving, still being shaped by the people and experiences I encounter as I travel through it. Each crossroads that I encounter is a challenge. Each corner that I turn a leap into the unknown. Every person I meet an experience. All these things shape my country, each serving it’s own hidden purpose, some will be revealed in the future as my past takes shape.

This is my inner space, my state of mind....


New year!!!!New books!!!!!!New reviews!!!!!!

The publishing trend in India had seen a marked increase in 2008 and the graph continues to rise in 2009. This year promises to deliver some hard punches which book lovers like me are gladly waiting for. If 2008 was the year of debutante authors, 2009 gives more power to the pen of the big names in the game.

It sure is an an exciting time to be a writer in India, with a number of publishing houses going all out to get their voices heard. In the process, its the reader who derieves the maximum benefit, being treated to a variety of subjects. However, the trend as I see will be focussed on writing that is contemporary, entertaining and showcasing how the world is changing inside and outside the home.

From the fiction stable, you can look forward to Siddharth Dhanwant Sanghvi's "The Lost Flamingoes of Bombay" (Penguin India) which has also been short listed for Man Asian prize. The book is a take on contemporary urban Mumbai society.

Fasten your seat belts as the original poster girl of indian writing is set to return to fiction after more than a decade. Yes you got it right. Shobhaa De is coming out with her novel "Sethji". Get set for a roller coaster ride as Shobhaa promises to be at her best.

Booklovers missing Ashok Banker do not have a long wait ahead. You can watch out for his "The Ganesha Palindrome". He follows this with two books "The Revenge of Ravana" and "Sons of Sita" in continuation with his successful Ramayana series. And the man who literally put India on the world map as far as contemporary english writing is concerned, Upamanyu Chatterjee is also coming out with a book from the Penguin stable late in 2009. Surely a delightful news. Among the other major fiction releases of the year are Ira Trivedi’s The Great Indian Love Story, and The Middleman by Sankar.

Tarun Tejpal is all set to release his second book "The Story of my Assassins" (a story of five men charged with conspiracy to kill a journalist) with Harper Collins. Another must read from the same publishing house should be Mukul Deva's "Salim Must Die" (which begins with the death of Osama Bin Lade and tells a story of international terrorism aided by ISI). Apart from these two biggies, readers are in for delight with the likes of Rana Dasgupta, Anita Nair and Advaita Kala (a sequel to her best selling chick lit 'Almost Single') coming out with their books from Harper Collins.

Random House India has all the reasons to be enthusiastic this year as books coming out from their stable are as diverse and different as chalk and cheese. "Other Rooms, Other Wonders" by Daniyal Mueeniddin, a collection of stories set in feudal pakistan looks all set to take the bookstores by storm. The author is being touted as the hottest talent of 2009. Abraham Verghese's book "Cutting the Stone" set in the world of medicine is another book to look out for in this year.

Hachette India is coming out with "Daughters of Shame" by the best selling author of 'Shame' Jasvinder Sanghera. From Bloomsbury comes Kamila Shamsie’s Burnt Shadows, a tale set between Nagasaki and 9/11 in India, Pakis­tan, New York and Afghanistan.

As was in 2008, this year too the debutante authors are all set to bare their fangs. Coming out first is "The Marriage Bureau for Rich People" (Hachette India) by Farahad Zama, an investment banker. As the name suggests, the book is about a marriage bureau set to cater the indian client. Penguin hopes to make a splash with the first time author Ali Sethi's book "The Wish Maker" set against the turbulent background of modern pakistan. At Rupa, it is Himani Dalmia's novel "Life is Perfect" a depiction of life in modern Delhi on which high expectations are placed. Harper Collins, in the meanwhile, is heavily relying on journalist Pinki Virmani's "Deaf Heaven" which talks about the dilemmas faced by modern women and Chandrahaas Chowdhury's "Aarzee the Dwarf" to make all the right noises. The latter promise to be refreshingly different.

So lots to chew on this year too. Happy reading!!!!!!!!

P.S. non fiction titles follow in the next post.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Have you ever taken time to really think about the words that you so casually use? Have you ever thought that words have lives of their own that you can't control once you have uttered them?

“...He caught the glint of clear grey eyes; and then he shivered, for it came suddenly to him that it was the face of one without hope who goes in search of death.”

The words came to her as clearly as the crisp, keen feel of the fresh morning air on a mountain top. Words that she had read in some book; one of the many books that she, an avid reader, had devoured in her eagerness to finish the current book and move on to the next. How the words resonated with her grey mood!

She now knew only too well what it meant to have a face of one without hope; a crushed spirit. She sighed, turned for the umpteenth time in her bed that seemed to offer no comfort. Sleep evaded her. The pain in her heart consumed her but this time there were no tears; not anymore. She gave up the battle and allowed herself to sink into the depths of pain. And in the midst of her agony, words came to her.

He was angry, he was hurt and he put forth all his anger and pain in the choice of words. “You take me for granted; you are selfish; I am tired; you can't prove it to me; don't act deaf and dumb; I'm not a mind reader nor a super angel ...” The tirade flowed and with every word he uttered a small piece of her broke down, shattered and was destroyed. The man she loved, the man with whom she had experienced inexplicable joy and happiness, was looking at her in disgust, almost loathe; and his fury burned and it consumed her. But this time, she was not going to cry.

Words, words, words, words! What is it they say? Stick and bones can break my body but not my spirit? Those who said that must have known that there was another innocuous looking but more deadly weapon; one that can cut through the sinew of the body, heart and touch that hidden, undefined part, the soul, the spirit. Like a sharp sword, forged in fires assured to sear anything that stood in its way, a sword hammered on an anvil of pain, the words he uttered took the shape of the sword and tore into her heart, past it, till they found its target; her spirit and ruthlessly, they plunged, breaking her.

Tears started to form, threatening to fill her eyes but she blinked them away, furious with herself. No more tears. She looked at her watch, 2 am in the night, still sleep was a rumour that she had heard of far away and as yet, it didn't knock on her door. It was a distant thought, still roaming wildly in the plains; its journey down the plains and up the stony hills to reach her not yet begun. There was nothing else to do but continue on the road appointed for her; she was now immersed in the pain.

“I love you; I want to spend the rest of my life with you; you are so beautiful; you saved me; you are so good to me, you are an angel.” Another set of words, uttered in the ecstasy of love; words just as strong as the hurting ones; only that these were healing words, and he had said them to her. She smiled; a grim bitter smile. How fickle and unpredictable life is! How things can change in the blink of an eye; how easy it is to lose one's whole life in a matter of seconds, and watch as the only one, the love of your life walks out of your life without a trace. All in a matter of words.

His words had touched her spirit, in them, she heard distrust,exhaustion, threat to her future with him; and they poisoned her spirit. She was flooded with questions. Could she never do anything right? How can he love her yet distrust her so much? What was it that she wasn't doing?

Despair started to set in. But she was no saint either; she had used the same tool, words, and inflicted pain on him; only it was employed in the reverse. If his sin was the sin of commission, then hers was of omission. It was what she had not said and done that had started the war. She was more the non verbal type; actions speak louder than words; and it hurt him terribly. He took it as a sign of disrespect, of taking him for granted and yet, she was so used to this form of communicating that as much as she tried, she found herself slipping back to omission. Old habits die hard, they say.

When she did use words, they came off as selfish, quarrelsome and rude.And yet, she too could use them to bring him joy. “You are my man; my love, you make me insanely happy; you are so understanding; you drive me crazy; I want to marry you; I'm yours for life.” She recalled his smile, the feel of his strong arms as he drew her close, the touch of his lips, the beating of his heart as she started to drown in him and the look in his eyes when he said he loved her.

How she loved him; how he brought her happiness and yet; how he could bring her pain! And how she could bring him pain too! She thinks he over reacts but so does she. What would it have hurt to say ‘I'm sorry sweetheart; I know it hurts you when I do that; and I'm not sure that this is the last time it will happen but I promise to try to improve.” But would he believe her; would it just be words to him?

When he tried talking, she became defensive and a deadly silence ensued; both of them left to brood in their dark thoughts. Ironically, she sits and writes this; another set of words! And the last words that she pens are a cry of help to the Almighty; “God, I love him, please help him see that and Lord, help me be a better person, and accept my mistakes when I do make them. If it is your will for us to be together, and for this thing to work; then please help us make it work.”

Saturday, January 3, 2009


These are the things I want in 2009 for every woman – if your particulars dreams or desires are missing just add them to the wish list.

More time, since a woman’s work is never done; if we could have 36 hours in the day, and spend at least 10 hours on ourselves, life would be just perfect.

A world where at least 50 per cent of the presidents, prime ministers, CEOs, politicians and judges were women. I’d ask for 80 per cent, which is pretty much what the other gender has, but we women aren’t selfish, we’ll settle for just half the power.

A birth control pill that works without causing nasty side effects or lowering our fertility. A guarantee that the "new pill ", which promises to do away with menstruation for women, is actually safe.

A century from 2009 to 2109 where we have at least thrice as many women Nobel laureates as compared to the measly 34 who made it to the list between 1903 to 2008.

Bras that fit. Not horrible devices from the torture chamber, not sacks that offer less support than dental floss, just normal, comfortable bras for normal women.

Equal TV and press time for all women boxers, cricket players, footballers, tennis players, hockey players and sports people out there who train just as hard as boys for a fifth of rewards.

Priests, of all religions, who don’t start by viewing women as cradles of sin, who don’t make women ashamed of their bodies, who seek not to control the energy of women but to help them release that energy in the best possible way for them and the world.

Ads that don’t insult us by treating women as candy floss, or stereotyping them as vacous housewives, or draping them over cars and computers on the assumption that women could only ever help to sell Male Machines, never to buy them.

More respect from the world when we decide to be mothers. Doctors who won’t treat us as brain damaged walking baby carriers, tell us not to make such a fuss, tell us not to ask too many questions, or tell us that post partum depression is all in the head. We want work places that will prioritize paternity leave as much as maternity leave. We want work places, whether these are building sites or corporate offices that offer flexitime and crèches as a matter of course, rather than as reluctant bribes to half the workforce.

Men, who know how to love us, respect us, give us equal rights in the bed and treat us right. Partners, either male or female, who would never be abusive or violent, women who know that support is what we expect from them, not just from women organizations or NGOs or when an issue creeps up in the society, men who are happy to be with us not only for our curves but for our brains as well.

An automatic muzzle for anyone who presumes to tell women how they should dress, what they should say, how they should make love or how they should live. We don’t need to be told; we’re pretty good at finding out for ourselves.

Oh, and presents. Like flowers, crepe saris, chocolates, roses, diamond rings, brandy snifters, iPods, Blackberry’s environmentally friendly SUVs, honeymoon in Scandinavian countries, a hang gliding course and a killer digital camera.

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