Thursday, May 29, 2014


It was one of those things. My mom probably said it first: that she wanted to see the Grand Canyon. And my father promised to take her. Then somehow it became one of those larger than life things that you aspire to do.
The other day, at the dining table Ajoydada asked me why Sedona? Who on earth even heard of Sedona? And I found myself telling him about that last night I ever had a lucid conversation with my dad, that night before his operation... And I mentioned that even that night he was waiting, " let me get well," he said, " you and I, we will go..." The tears threatened to well even as I said it.
So I didn't tell anyone the rest.
I didn't say how, near the end of his life, when pain was the only constant companion my father had, he called me to has side and told me to pray. "There's so much I still have to do," he said, " so much undone. I have to die to be born again, study, grow up and only then can I finish all I wanted to do. So pray for me. Pray that I die, so I can live through your eyes, so I can live again."
I do not know if he was right or wrong.
I do not care.
But today, a few days away from a much awaited trip to the Grand Canyon, I have to say I feel I am not here alone.
And yes, back then,
I prayed. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

New York, revisited

" go dancing through the doorways
just to see what you're gonna find
leaving nothing to interfere
with the crazy bends of your mind
And when you finally reappear
at the place where you came in, 

you've thrown your love to all the strangers
And caution to the wind."

New York City. Much louder than I remember. And bigger. That's the thing that always struck me about the US, it's huge. When we were here as kids I remember telling my dad about how much bigger the skies here are, how the fields and the roads seem to stretch forever! He laughed at me but I think he's here with me somewhere and he agrees with me. Now, sitting on an Amtrak train that's transporting us go Niagara, I gaze at the scenic Adirondack and reiterate my theory: If it seems bigger, it must be the USA.
Anyway, back to New York City. What can I say about it that hasn't been said already?
We stayed in West NY close to the Lincoln Tunnel. Outside our window the Manhattan skyline reflected it's many myriad moods throughout the day. In the city we walked. I mean really walked. I have two girls with several degrees of aching muscles following me about... Not to mention my own. Did the whole Times Square Central Park circuit with the Empire State building and the Rockefeller Centre thrown in. The tavern in Central Park, Strawberry fields, chicken from the Halal guys on 53rd and 6th, even freezing vodkas in ice glasses at the minus five ice bar! We were intermittently joined 
by my cousin Jayashree who drove in all the way from Massachusetts just to meet us and who  I met after years and it made things that much more interesting. How can I forget the ghost of Johnda or the loo break at the Plaza Hotel?  We also did Wall Street, Chinatown and the 9/11 memorial. The Brooklyn Bridge, the Staten Island ferry and the works.... The list goes on and on.
Hectic? You bet it was, but isn't that hectic pace just what New York city's all about....? No bites please, I just sank my teeth into the Big Apple!
Picture credit: Amitesh Banerjee. 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


It is dark, I reach for the light switch and find it does not work. I have the key in my hand. I fumble for the lock, open the door and enter.
It is just as I expected, the furniture arranged neatly, the summer night fragrant and the curtains billowing in the wind.
I smile to myself, knowing it is you who creaked those windows open, not willing all that dust and mustiness upon me.
I arrange myself on my side of the aged worn-out sofa. The springs sing out, I place the glasses on the low table and wait.
I do not have to wait long. I know exactly when you come and occupy the empty seat across me: we raise our glasses in a toast and smile into our lives.
Like we have been doing for the last twenty-one years.
"All is not lost", I hear you say, wistfully, almost to yourself.
And I find myself smiling through my tears .
Unable to say all I came to say
and for which there are no words anyway......

And when I close the door behind me,
 the walls heave a sigh.
All that remains are two dust rings on the table.
And a room full of empty.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge: The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge Reflections Post 2014 #atozchallenge

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge: The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge Reflections Post 2014 #atozchallenge

Reflection. The A to Z Challenge.

Frankly, I had no idea such challenges existed. I had no clue that bloggers from all over came together like this. To me, my blog has always been a slightly wider expression of my personal space, visited by friends and the very occasional stranger. I heard of the AtoZ Challenge on twitter. And frankly, a lot of people thought I'd lost it truly and completely when I took it up. But here I am, patting myself on the back for having successfully completed it!
Well, looking back on the challenge, it was a bit difficult at first and I found myself trying to pre-plan it. Some posts came from the blue and some I had to mull over. Some I pre-scheduled and some came to me when I needed it most. Bingo! There it was!
And yes, I had a lot of fun. I specially recall discussing with a cousin the letter H. We spoke about so many things: home, husband, holiday, house, home-sickness, the list was never ending. Come the H morning I was full of which one to choose and there it hit me right between the eyes. H for Horror! How could anything else go there?
I think it's a great idea, so a big thank you to all the organisers and the people who made this little adventure possible. And thanks too to all the new friends I have made, the kind strangers who visited and stayed long enough to write a few has made a lot of difference to me.
There's just one thing: Since 30th April, I haven't had much to do. I miss that little espresso shot of words that greeted me each morning!!!