Saturday, December 11, 2010


Dedicated to BB, a flat mate, a friend, a support system, a buddy all rolled into one mass, err…mess.

There is something nice about everything that is familiar. Not because you’re acquainted or that you have experienced it before, but merely because there is exists a connection between you and the object/subject which comes alive every time you interact; a connection that becomes real only when it is absent or when that which is familiar makes an appearance. What is seemingly profound occurred to me only when I happen to visit SA’s place, the house which was a shelter to me when I first moved to Delhi for M.Phil. A junior turned friend, SA, kindly offered to make room in her flat. Of course I lived there only 1 week but everything about the house is so familiar. Starting from the main door that doesn’t shut, to the tap in the kitchen which is always temperamental and the flush that doesn’t work…A similar story is with my flat mate. It’s funny how you can get so used to some one that even their presence just blends in with everything that there is around. They just exist around you, much like the heap of clothes, the piles of books collecting dust and the scattered shoes in ways that you hardly ever notice them. But mostly I realized her presence only in her absence, when she was lasted stranded at home due to jaundice.

And it’s all so familiar. The much too many yellow lamps, the green bean bag (the one which has been used to sit not more 6 times in the last 16 months) turned into a dumping ground, the ashes of the incense sticks on the floor, bundles of jewellery callously strewn all over the wooden stand, the wrought iron mirror that serves more of an aesthetic purpose than a functional one, the fancy (over flowing) jute dust bin, the earthen ash tray, the bright pink mat…things which seem so familiar because whatever happens, they’re always there serving as little signifiers of the inhabitant of the room, the markers of her identity. Her love for green, her ability to horde things, or perhaps her inability to discard the sentiments attached to each one of those things, her belief in aesthetics over mere utilitarianism and her disbelief in neat structures, order…the anarchy not just in the room, but her thoughts. Her everyday-struggle for permanence, establishing an order of her own based on renewed ideas of what is right and wrong, ones which are more meaningful to her than what the majority preserves through mindless morals and regulations too restrictive for her spirit so wild. In the cupboard that over flows with clothes, I see the heart and mind of a woman, forever overflowing with ideas and love, thoughts that she rather mull over while the world passes her by, and love that she willing to offer anyone who may be running a deficit in their lives.

In a room where things are falling apart each day lives a lady who is a pillar of strength, to her family back home and to the girl next door. Over cups of aromatic tea and frothy, bitter-sweet coffee and the occasional smokes, they philosophize traversing several fields…emotional and intellectual; sometimes frivolous and sometimes serious! Passionate discourses on regrets of the past, betrayed relationships, lost loves, impending futures marred with uncertainty as much as hope and dreams. Brought together in a little apartment by the need to share expenses of a household, when they are not philosophizing, they share the insignificant details of their mundane lives; the woes of not having change when you need it most to the stalkers in the streets of Delhi, the inane gossip of D-school to emotional atyachaars inflicted by friends and foes. Together they prod along the path to a brighter tomorrow, stumbling and falling, assured of a hand to hold on to every time they might fall. May be familiarity doesn’t always breed contempt; sometimes it’s the most comfortable place to be in simply because it’s all so familiar, almost familial.

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