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The Ego
The end of another year has finally come. Or if you'd rather be optimistic and infuriatingly cheerful, then perhaps I should say that the beginning of a brand new fresh year has arrived. 2006 has been very interesting, to say the least. Eventful is perhaps more apt. I had never imagined what lay in store for me this last year. Unexpected, shocking...these are a few adjectives that pop in my head.
It was a year of "firsts" for me... First finals, first major operation, first job...and many other firsts that I shall not mention. (I'd love to recount some of my favourite memories, but I don't want to bore anyone!)
The year, honestly, did not start out well. There were problems amongst my friends, and even little skirmishes at home. Just before mid-year, I thought everything had been laid to rest. But then...a student died...then I landed up in the hospital and had to go through a month or two of painful recovery. Yes, it was painful, I felt helpless, I hated my life at that time, I felt stripped of every element of my independence...these facts I chose not to share with many; I did not want anyone's pity. Now that the time has passed, I can make light of it. Finally I started working at a newspaper as an intern and had loads of fun, and made good friends there. College started again...and from October I was thrown into a veritable whirlwind. Since then, I can honestly say that I haven't been able to rest completely...something or the other has always been happening. Unexpected things. Good things. Shocking things. Not-so-good things. A mixture of everything. I don't know whom to thank for making my Bombay trip possible... Ah, I truly rested that one week. And then it was back to the daily grind.
My friends have been amazing this year...they've supported me in everything...they've been there when I faltered...when I felt no one was there to help me pick up the pieces, they were there. My friends, you know who you are...and I love you all for being there for me. And Mum...if you hadn't been there after my operation, I wouldn't have made it...honestly.
But one point to be made: I do not regret much in 2006. I don't think I'd want to change wot happened (okay, maybe one or two things...I'd give ANYTHING to change them!!!), and that's what I expect always: not to regret anything in my life. No really...it's odd, but gratifying that I don't have regrets.
What do I expect out of 2007? Nothing. I don't want to expect anything and be disappointed. I'll just do wot Bilbo did...and keep walking on the road and not know or care where I'm going until I get there.
The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
The Ego
Sometimes we must be hurt in order to grow,
Sometimes we must fail in order to know,
Sometimes we must lose in order to gain,
Because some lessons in life are best learnt through pain.

I got this in an email from my uncle, the subject being "Good morning". Bless his soul, but exactly how was this supposed to make my morning good?? It only served to make me think about the times I've been hurting...the times I've failed...the times I've lost things and people, and the pain I'm going through. I guess it's the pessimistic side of me...The optimistic me should've thought about how I've grown, wot all I know now, wot I've gained and the lessons I've learnt. Although right now I think that's silly...you shouldn't have to be hurt to grow...you shouldn't have to fail in order to know important things...you shouldn't have to lose wot's important to you...and you certainly don't need pain to teach you anything. Losing ppl...being in pain...could go either way... you could possibly learn and grow and wotever else... but it could also break you, and turn you into a hollow, depressed shell of a person who has no hope left in life. Or worse, he/she would have hope and have those hopes dashed all the time.
It's my fault I suppose...I should think from the point of the glass being half-full, than half-empty. How was he to know by sending this email, I'd go bonkers?
Ah well...
The Ego
Broken dreams
Shattered by fears
Beautiful eyes
Now scarred by tears
Nowhere to run
Nowhere to hide
This is one wave
That I just have to ride
No way to rest
No time to pause
All I do is reflect
On what has come to pass
Just when I thought the end was near
It comes back to haunt me and costs me dear

So... errr... that is that.
The Ego
<<<< MY HANDS!!!

So, the reason I went to Bombay was for a wedding... the whole thing lasted 4 days: the sangeet (where I also performed i.e. danced), the mehndi, the actual wedding, and finally, the reception. I missed the reception, having to fly back on that day, but the remaining days were really amazing.

On the day of the sangeet, I personally think many people were drunk by the end of the night and I suspected my aunt of spiking my drink (although it turned out she hadn't)... I admit I was tempted to drink... indeed, drinking is allowed in my family, so it was no big deal for me to take anything I wanted; it's not like I haven't had alcohol before. My cousins most certainly had a few. But I didn't. Trust me, it was hard for me to resist it. But I had my reasons. *sigh* Anyways, the dance I performed went well; everyone was surprised to see that I could actually dance ... the last time my family saw me dancing was when I was 6 or something!

The mehndi was fun...although scraping the hard stuff out later was sooooooo bugging. Plus I hate the smell, so it's been hard living with my uber-icky-mehndi-smelling-hands. But it looks good... weeeee... There was this 5 year old boy at the mehndi (I have no idea whose kid he was and wot he was doing there) but he was busy crooning a song, where the words were something like "I wanna make loooove to you", with all earnestness, which was very...errr...fascinating.

The wedding was pretty good...I loved what I wore plus my hair was straight having been ironed... the men of the family hit the bar within 10 minutes of entering the premises, bless their souls, hehe...

I have about 200 pics of my trip...fantabulous memories I must say!

But now time to hit the books!!! Exams start Thursday!!!
The Ego
So...I went to Bombay. And I indeed wore the t-shirt that I had promised to wear in October. Sadly, no one seemed to notice... hehe...

Something caught my eye as soon as I got there. I reached about 8am Bombay time, and when we had to go through customs, there were no officials there. There were around 10 security officers (who were supposed to be at the baggage check) standing around a table sipping what I assumed to be chai (tea) and as soon as they saw me and my family, they just waved us through without bothering to take our baggage through the checking thingy. Granted, the most dangerous thing we had brought was probably my suede boots, but I mean, C'MON... no checks?!?!? They seemed more concerned abt gossipping abt whatever it was over their hot cuppa.

Next: the roads. Honestly, the drivers there don't seem to have a concept of what lanes are. At some points on the road, there are no demarcated lanes and so, when the dotted white lines do appear, I can actually sense genuine astonishment pass through the minds of the drivers in the cars around me. Not that they pay any attention to the lane demarcation though. Many a time was I at traffic lights where there were only 3 actual lanes, but in practice about 4 or 5. Oh and speaking of traffic lights: they're good as not being there sometimes. Really.

Oh, and I snapped this at a traffic light: This guy just gets off and starts wiping the front screen... The driver noticed me snapping a pic... They weren't offended. They seemed most excited abt their pic being taken really.

So that's enough for now... more later!
The Ego
Ok, I'M BACK... and I'm going to make a series of blog posts about my trip coz there's SO MANY things I want to blog about.
First off, I was awake for 36 hours straight ... am proud of myself... from 8am Saturday last week till I slept off finally Sunday night after approx 36 hours (factoring in the time difference).

But getting to what this particular blog post is about:
I could hardly see any Padmini's on the roads of Bombay anymore... coz they're now FILLED with Maruti-Suzuki Swifts (yes, in India, it's not just "Suzuki", it's "Maruti-Suzuki"). And if that wasn't enough, it seemed to me that about 80% of them were red! On one particular afternoon, I counted, and took an average, and it came out to be that every 2 minutes, I saw one red Swift.
The roads of Bombay are occupied by Swift's, Getz's, Santro's and Honda's (mostly Accords). The cars I see here in Dubai so often, were not to be seen. So rare were they, that I counted; in the 8 days that I was there, I saw:
- 1 LX 470
- 1 Porsche (Yellow, and Carrera I think)
- 2 Toyota Camry's (new models)
- approx 5-6 Mercedes (something like the E 220)
- 1 VW Beetle (but like Herbie, not the new ones!)
It's late and I'm exhausted (came from the airport a while back), so I'll blog again tomorrow... Lots more coming up!
The Ego
As I survey the current mess in my room, I wonder if my decision makes sense. It's not something huge, but it's not without its ramifications. I'm leaving tonight for Bombay...will be back in a week and I don't know if I can blog from there or not. Anyways, it's for a wedding in the family which should be fun. The reason why I'm wondering whether I'm doing the right thing or not is that my exams start in 2 weeks, and here I am, gallivanting to India.
P thinks this trip has come at the most opportune moment for me...that it'll give me a chance to get away from everything that's currently stressing me out. Let's see if this one week indeed rejuvenates me and if it helps me to put things into perspective. I, for one, certainly hope so.

Ah well... but before I go...

I don't need to say who this is for... the people concerned know who they are.

Okay, so I won't be blogging now for a while, unless I get time in Bombay amidst practicing for the dances, applying mehndi on my hands and shopping like crazy! And studying of course! Or I might blog again before I leave if something earth-shattering and life-changing occurs!
Au revoir mes amis!
The Ego
Yesterday I had two conversations with two different people about the same topic.
In the morning, I was lamenting the fate of people who fell in love with those belonging to a different religion or community, coz more often than not, that love takes a backseat and is suppressed to keep the honour of the family and what-not. At night, another friend asked me wot I would do if a man who loved me, but belonged to another religion, asked me to marry him...would I change my religion for him?

I seriously oppose the entire concept of not being with someone just coz of their religion. Some pipsqueaks had long ago declared to me (it was so long ago, that I'm not even sure who these ppl were; but they were guys, that much I remember...no girl has ever said anything so stupid to me) that they would never, ever, EVER fall in love with a girl who followed another religion. Okay, yeah, coz your hormones, pheromones and everything that arouses you, first calculates whether or not the person belongs to the same religion, yeah? *sarcasm dripping over here* Oh PLEASE... don't test my patience and my limit to listen to stupidity!
What is wrong with people from different communities or religions marrying each other? My parents, although from the same religion, were from completely different communities. My aunt (a Hindu by birth) married a Muslim. Gauri married Shah Rukh Khan. Malaika Arora married Arbaaz Khan. (Oh please, let the celebrity couples I quote NOT get divorced!!!) Get my point here?? Yes, I realize that some families, some communities, regard this as being sinful or against their rules and blah...I know all of this. But to me, it doesn't make sense. Yes, you want to pass down customs and traditions to your offspring and perhaps it makes more sense if the parents are from the same religious background, but does that mean that children from inter-religious unions suffer? Do they not receive such traditions and customs? Don't they have more customs and traditions and a wealth of culture flowing in from both sides? And yes, such things don't always work out but if the people involved really want to make it work, it CAN happen. I honestly believe that.
I was also told that it doesn't make sense for such unions to take place coz someone has to compromise. Well, so what??? Doesn't compromise happen all the time in life? Isn't compromise worth it for someone you love? I guess some people are simply against the concept...in the end, wot can I say or do abt such strong viewpoints?

And then the question asked to me: would I change my religion for a guy? Those who know me very well know my views on religion, so it's no wonder that my answer came as a surprise...well, it surprised me as well. I expected myself (and no doubt, others expected this as well) to say that I would not do any such thing and if the guy wanted to be with me then he'd have to accept me as I am, and that if I didn't have a problem with his religion, then why should he have a problem with mine? But know wot I really said? I said that if I really loved this man, and if there was no other way to be with him...I would do it. I guess I'm a sentimental and emotional fool. But then again, would I do it just on paper so I can be with him, or would I truly follow the religion? I suspect it's the former and that's not too fair is it? At least I'm being honest about it though, than some ridiculous hypocrites who choose to advertise themselves as being devout followers of their faith while in reality flouting every religious ethic behind the scenes. But if two people really want to be together...and if this is the only thing stopping them...well then, why not? Would I be compromising here? Yes. Would it go against my sense of self and independence? Undoubtedly yes. But that's why they say that love is blind...you do stuff you never thought you'd do. So one day...if I want to marry someone not from my community etc...and if I really love him, who knows wot I might do???
(Note here that in my opinion, I sense that my father would hate this idea as I have a sneaky suspicion that he wants to choose my life partner himself, although I do believe my Mum might be more lenient)

Which brings me to another question: how come it's always the girls who are expected to change their religion eh??

And seriously, all throughout school, while I was vaguely conscious that P celebrated Onam, and J and Laz celebrated Christmas and that Nutz celebrated Eid, I never really thought abt such differences... I even remember giving Nutz a Diwali card once (she celebrates Eid), and I also remember once breaking a Ramadan fast at her house (although I didn't fast then; I was only 7-8). Even in college, I never thought that, "ok this person is a Scientologist" before becoming their friend. Even now, when I see my friends, their religion doesn't cross my mind... why should it? And so, if I don't discriminate over whom I make friends with, how the bloody hell do you expect me to discriminate over whom I love??? And don't bother pointing out that there's a difference between being someone's friend and loving/marrying someone...I know there is...I merely think this difference can be overcome.

Ah well, and to those who do not agree with me, I welcome your comments, bouquets or brickbats alike... but remember this:
I say "po-TAY-to"... you say "po-TAAH-to" !!!
The Ego
Ummm...for the past few days, here's a sampling of the questions and statements I've had to listen to:
"Are you alright? You look dead."
"What's wrong with you?? You look exhausted?"
"Are you not sleeping properly? You look so blah."
"Why are you so quiet D? Is something up?"
"You look sad D... wot happened?"
And the prize winner of them all: "If you push yourself even more, you'll end up in depression...you're already so messed up. Why are you doing this to yourself?" (or some variation of a similar statement)

Well... duh, I haven't been sleeping... I have been releasing a lot of salt water from my ducts (which helped enhance my zombie look)... blackouts even... why wouldn't people ask me all this? But to say that I'm gonna end up clinically depressed...I mean, if it has to happen, it will, and I'll deal with it if it does.
Gawd...people think that because I'm D, I'm always going to be happy and bubbly and talking non-stop... "Energizer Bunny" as HW once called me... hehe... good ol' days. My point is... this Energizer Bunny runs out of batteries too y'know... I can't be happy all the time... life isn't like that. It's got its good share of ups and downs. I'm dealing with it...so why can't you? I guess some people are worried about my mental and physical state (and thank you for that), but...things happen. It's not smooth sailing all the time...

Besides, my batteries are recharging themselves... this Energizer Bunny isn't going to be shut down forever!
The Ego
Further proof of lack of sleep... It's 1:35am as I type this... hmm hmmm...

But...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MA!!!

Okay, so she doesn't know I have a blog... well, not yet anyway... but the point is...
I love you Mum, and here's to letting cyberspace know that it's my dear Mum's birthday todayyy!!! Wooohhhhhooooooooooooo!!!
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