Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Hello Archika, meet Archika.

I have never had a room to myself before. Ever. Which is surprising considering I have been living away from parents for the past two years, and usually prefer spending my time alone and aloof. But now that I am finally in the U.S of A (yay?), I realized that this was the first time I was really, truly alone in a room.

And this realization did not hit me immediately. Though I came here with Whizkid (thank you God for that blessing), we did not scoot off to our rooms as soon as we arrived. Our first week was spent camping on the carpeted floor of the living room watching Homeland and staring out the balcony glass door while eating dinners off plastic wraps. It was when our mattresses arrived that we finally got around to setting up our individual spaces with some reluctance. Whizkid and I have been roomies before, and this was a new stage in our relationship. We were graduating to be flatmates now. And she was better equipped to deal with this than I was. She has years of experience of being in a room of her own for years. Not me.

And this did not dawn upon me until I was finally sleeping in my own bed in my own room that night.I felt weird. I could not put my finger on it. I kept expecting someone to walk in and put a mattress next to me and camp down. But that was of course not going to happen. And so I started recalling my life in reverse. There has always been a Whizkid, a Joshua, a Laddoo, or the tiny presence of my brother in a corner of the room always. How much I wished at that moment that he would turn up. Because I wasn't elated at all at the thought of having a room to myself now (which I would often wish for when I had him), I was terrified. I did not feel liberated. I felt stranded. So, along with the pressures of the crazy graduate workload, exams, career fairs, money crunch, barely anybody to talk to, no friends (why am I suddenly having trouble making friends?), I also now have to learn to live with myself.

This was the first time I was going to discover who I really was. Hello Archika, I thought to myself, meet Archika. I don't know who I am going to find. I hope I like the Archika I am starting to meet. I hope I am able to learn to make the best use of my time and my space. I pray I fall in love with my company without the expectation of the long stretches of time being interrupted.

So, far, I have made friends with the three trees that are right outside my window. A few days more and I am pretty sure I will have names for them. And though I still despise being holed up in an empty space, I sometimes have beautiful, private moments.
It rained today, helping the lights in the window glitter
My guess (and hope) is that it will only get better from here.

Until later!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Hasta la Vista: #23


When I moved to Bangalore two years ago, I never thought I would write a blog post about it. Though this city gave me, and still does, a thousand joys, experiences, adventures, friends, enemies (!), and woes...jotting it down for digital consumption seemed just too cliche! The "New Girl in the City!", non-glamorised "Wake Up Sid" and the "#BangaloreDiaries" kind of cliche, you get my gist?

But then I never thought I would ever love a city either, did I? Being an Air Force kid means that you pick up your bags and get going every few years. Which gives you a taste for every place, but puts you in a tough position to answer questions like "Where are you from?" or "Which is your favourite city?" The second question had always been particularly tricky for me. I used to believe that my never having stayed at a place long enough was the reason for being "answer-less", if I may, but Delhi proved me wrong :P I was there ten years, and never fell in love (with it).

In a weirdly discrete timeline, Bangalore has been the city of my infancy, my childhood and now my womanhood. Which makes me wonder why was I so surprised at discovering my love for it. But anyway, this post is not about that. This post is about the fact that I am going to leave Bangalore soon. And that I am going to leave the people I love here behind. And that I am not yet ready to do that.

I have exactly 22 days left in the city, including today. And I vowed yesterday that I was going to make each one of them count. To capture everything and everyone I love in the city and express it here, so that when I am away, I know how to come back...

My glimpses of Bangalore from yesterday. I woke up (in the noon, at my god damn pretty house) with a feel-good fuzzy feeling inside my stomach. An early evening stroll led us to this:

Cacti - The first resident of Vazda's balcony garden
The evening felt as free as a balmy summer vacation from school. We decided to head out to Thubarahalli lake with mothers in tow, but that turned out to be a disaster! But never mind, Calvin is always to the rescue. Great ambience, comforting coffee, and unbelievably creamy spaghetti did wonders to the mood of the evening :)

Calvin's - A new cafe in Whitefield

Vazda and Vazda Senior - how happy after a failed lake visit :P

Spaghetti Alfredo and superb Garlic bread - I was so content after this I was ready to die happy
 The ladies then decided to catch up on a bit of shopping, which was quite entertaining I must say!

Checking out the nuances of shoemaking
And then Bangalore decided to rain!

 Well, that's all from yesterday :D Goodbye for now from my Laddoo of Happiness-
Vazda - She hates to be called my Laddoo :P

Monday, April 11, 2016

Wo Tum Ho

ख़ुदा ने जो एक बख़्शी है राहत वो तुम हो 
भीड़ में एक सांस जो आजाये वो तुम हो 
रब्ब से करी थी जो अरदास वो तुम हो 
इश्क़ हो तुम, मेरा होना जो है वो तुम हो 
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