Saturday, November 27, 2010

Nostalgia in an Electric Train

I had an opportunity to travel by Electric train today - after a very very long time...

I travelled from Beach station to Guindy, a blissful 25 minute ride around Chennai with a whole compartment almost to myself, smiling at the chatter of a group of school girls going for exams, watching thorugh those iron rodded windows couples sitting on the benches, vendors selling, all that greenery and  multiple perspectives of Chennai from an electric train.  Even during my first ever journey in an electric train, that struck me quite starkly - the perspective of Chennai from a Bus and a train are completely different, I like the former better.

Talking to myself ( monologues have become a way of life, which makes me a great company for myself) during the entire journey reminscing about  the good old times in the past, I didnt realise how the 25 minutes passed by.

When the electric train crossed the highcourt busstand and I was reminded of a very funny incident that happened when I tried being naughty while I was travelling in a bus,( a moement when I forgot myself and my surroundings),  56H to be precise, after college with Jigila.  How I almost got caught and was let go by a magnanimous pillion rider who ensured that as one of the best moments of relief in my life. ( what a surprise, as I key in this line.. Jigila called on my mobile ...  Amazing!!) - I am thankful for these graces in life - friends who call me when I think of them, but Jigie is not just a mere friend !!!

Chetpet reminded me of MCC school, where I had my first professional training as part of my job, memories of all my friends there Suresh, Gokul, Jane, Jayashree, Uma, Bindu, and of course Khan ( how can I ever forget him).  Thats when I started travelling by train extensively.  Wimco Nagar to Central, Park to Chetpet and back.  I loved those journeys. I loved those training sessions, friendships, the bonding, the challenges, the fun, the camaraderie, the learning.. Whoa...

Egmore reminded more of the Doveton Corrie days of training, Khan and I used to manage the logistics of training, to Khan's dismay I ended up managing the finance,  Daniel, Binda, Naomi ( she passed away tragically), vijayalakshmi, Pearly,  Joe kuriakose, Chackochen, Austin, Jamuna, Jane, the corner shop, Waikiki complex etc.,  It used to be so easy to meet Petula there.  Its close from Perambur.

Nungambakkam reminded me of  my MBA days - Some of those MBA days i used to travel from Numgambakkam to Guindy.  It never used be pleasant, cos' I was most of the time anxious to reach home, teach dennu and complete hundred other things, always occupied, planning what to do next - but it reminds me of my grit, my perseverence and my potential.  If I put my heart and soul to something I will get more that what I aspire for.  My Gold Medal is a constant reminder of that and the grace of God.  I still cant beleive I did a part-time MBA. 

While it was the PTC bus that I used during school and college days, it was the electric train for 3 years while I was working but my favourite definitely is the greenish PTC bus.  I still love them - the green coloured ones.  they are so rare these days.  I dont connect to the the new range of  MTC buses that are now going around Chennai. 

Kodambakkam always had reminded me of Fatima, as there were so many stories that I have heard from Jigila about her journey and other interesting anecdotes about her journey from here to Wimco Nagar during her school days.  Later my sister also did her schooling there.  I used to remember Jigila's stories during my MBA journey days too!!!

The Mambalam station was quite empty today contrary to the regular sight of crowded madness.  Maybe because of the timing that I travelled...  I crossed CTI quarters near Guindy, which is the place where I went to first time on a bike with Joe to Chetan and Chechi's place.

So finally this 25 minute journey turned out to be a Joy ride, reminding me of some good old days dating back close to 2 decades and during this thanksgiving weekend helped me remind of yet another grace of a happy, carefree and a lovely youth surrounded by friends, cousins, family and lot of beautiful memories !!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Yet again !!!!

It was a rainy day - inconsistent rainy day.  It poured for sometime and then the persistant sun peeped for a little while and when we were getting into the mood of a bright sunny day, it poured again.

My thoughts were with you - rain or shine.

I cooked, cleaned, scrubbed, bathed, organised wardrobes, cupboards, cleaned the fish tank, fed the fish, relplanted some of the plants in the garden - just to distract myself, though it didnt help.

The rain and the sunshine alternated throughout the day and played pranks.

I continued working until I realised its happening yet again. So whats the excuse this time?

A far away memory !!

I am staring at it – it’s a group picture of some wonderful times shared in the past. A camaraderie that once existed, the group itself does not exist anymore – not in the spirit of the once flourishing vibes.

Work went excellently well in the meeting – In fact, the processes we developed then were the baseline for the entire group that I was part of and it was so successful. Late night working, the night walks, photographs, posing, yoga, synchronized massaging, the greenery, the ambience, playing pranks on others, the bonfire, the bright moon (oh yeah, that was lovely and I very distinctly remember it !!) and the journey itself was so very memorable.

When I look at myself then, I am reminded of the hurt that only I related to. How hard I had to try to look happy, joyous and smiling but deep within I was actually bleeding. I guess I put up a great show, no one ever suspected anything for they involved me in the gossips, laughter and jokes that caused me this immense pain. The group photo is a reminder of the great time I shared with some very good friends and also a reminder of how things can go awfully wrong at the same time.

It was so very obvious right from the first day when we all met together and thankfully, it was obvious to me probably in the first couple of hours. I distinctly remember the messaging part and it struck me out of the blue, in front of my eyes. Then the stories unfolded from each member of the group one by one, account by account.. how I gritted my teeth to fight back tears  I laughed along with the group, hiding the pain tactfully and cried when I was alone.

I remember getting into my shell then, and I took a long time coming out of it. I am still staring at the picture and looking at how gracefully I am sitting next to one of my friends. The picture is bright hued, everyone is happy and smiling. Me too – but deep within only I know why I chose to sit where I sat and why I was so hurt.

But Vincy, What have you learnt from it? Aren’t you back to square one?

Its time you grew up !!!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

What am I the most?

I was reading Preeti's blog and the blog titled come sit by my fire and I was answering a question that was raised by them on "  What are you the most".  Frankly I am confused about what I am the most.  But I thought of coming up with a comprehensive list of What all I am in the first place.. and a list was born..


What are you the most ?  Have you ever given that a thought?

Who am I?

The question popped up again today.

I remember a blog, years back where I started with this question and didnt proceed any further.  Today there was no escape.  Inspite of palpitations, heavy feeling and discomfort, the question came back to haunt me.

Who am I?

Who is this person called Vincy?  What are / were my dreams? Have I lived for myself?  Am I  living for the whims and fancies of the people and soceity around me.

What were my dreams and passions? What did I actually want to become?  Will my today's self match with my younger self?  Will my younger Self recognise what Vincy has become?

These questions brought to fore, that I am no where close to my dreams, a truth which I had skillfully avoided all along by not even thinking deep into that question. 

I also realise that if I do not pursue my dreams now, my dreams, hopes, desires and the true purpose of life will continue to remain underground, where I had buried them long back into the deep dark gallows of my past with the aspirations of people around me.

So, now what?

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

All Souls Day

Was it the late monsoon rain or was it the flood lights around the Cemetery? The trees were greener and brighter all around.

Inspite of the noise and the lights there was an unexplained eeriness there. I was extra careful in my steps that I took within the cemetery lest I may wake the resting dear departed.

The parish priest of St.Patricks church was announcing in the mike – “ It is not only important that we take care of the houses where we live, we need to ensure we take care of our future home, which is a cemetery” - How very true!

Finally there is no escape for anyone from this final resting place. But do we ever ponder about that while we run around behind umpteen number of frivolous things in this world?

“Our God is a graceful God and is immensely patient. He knows your entire life is a small speck in the universe and is immensely patient towards you “ – the parish priest continued.

My mind was back again to the point of Cemetery being the final resting place – How long for each of us? In which order? How exactly will our end be? Who will come in for my funeral? How will I look then? Will anyone cry for me? Oh.. a lot of uncomfortable questions for which no one has an answer.

Prayer – the only option for peace of mind. But, do I have the time? What an excuse!!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Aquatic beings

They are such a pleasure to watch. They go around playing with each other and to me it seems they wait for me.  The moment I give them their due, they are all over the place gobbling up those tiny specks of coloured balls - with a little caution in the air, even with me.  It is interesting to watch them swim up to the surface, catch a food ball in their mouth and dive back to the safety of the depths of the little aquarium.

I am their full time care taker and their ardent admirer. To me they are such wonderful stress busters.  Watching them swim around gracefully around the flower shaped aquarium calms me immensely and clears my mind.

The aquarium sits in the middle of our tiny space that we call 'Garden' and is an outdoor one. The whole bunch of them  are bright orange and one guy in there, the black demon is a survivor.  He was alone for almost half-a-year and now is quite healthy and energetic and have welcomed the new comers diplomatically. 

Initially while cleaning the tank I used a strainer to transfer them to a different container, but later I found that holding them with the cup of my palms is almost theraupatic in nature for me.  So I hold them, touch them, whisper sweet nothings to them during our cleaning sessions in the weekend and enjoy the ticklish feeling of these slippery ones squiggling in my hand.

I hope they like my garden and my care. My darling fishes are my only pets at the moment.  Dont they look cute?