Thursday, January 21, 2010

Wintry Delights

Seasons change. You grow. Learn. Laugh. Play. Work.

Change is a part of everybody’s life. As I have mentioned in my previous post, some things in my life have seen a slight change, without any specific reason..... but even though my priorities have seen a shift as I grow, I’m glad that a few traits have remained safe with me, as individually pleasing as they have always been. The thirst to explore, enjoy, rejuvenate, and draw endless inspiration from the great outdoors is here to stay, and I harass my capacities to the maximum, just to thrill myself occasionally with my outdoors explorations. I find endless delight in the most inexplicable things, and often, they are so simple that it becomes quite impossible to believe that anything like some good misty rain or a distant sea gull’s call is all it takes to make my day. Turning a silent observer who does nothing more than watch nature play has become an addictive habit to the illogical dreamer in me.

Every journey is an exploration. The uncertainty factor that accompanies each journey is just as much as thrilling as the very experience itself. Every journey might be rigorously planned. But what you encounter along the way, you cannot ascertain with absolute accuracy, and as it turns truly unpredictable, the thirst to discover increases tenfold. I knew I was going to Lake Tahoe. There would be Snow. We would stay by Reno, in a hotel. It would possibly continue snowing. We would go snowmobiling. I would get to watch the lake….although I knew that these were to be expected, I knew that it would include more than just that. The weather foreshadowed something enchanting, and the winds held the same promise. So as we moved on, and it began snowing, I let my experience throw its surprises for me. To go engulf yourself in an experience without a fair idea of what it’s going to be has been one of my persisting habits, one which I’m planning never to get rid allows me to accept and enjoy experiences as they come.

Snow was always an integral part of my most vibrant of fantasies. As a kid, I conjured up snow from thermo coal, when the summers turned a little too unbearable…and that’s another story which is reserved for another leisurely recital. Snow enchanted because it was never within my reach and I grew up walking in winter wonderlands in my countless dreams….and my love for the colder, cooler and wetter clime has never diminished.

"On wintry day, as I drove,
on mountainous terrain, on deserted road,
from the clouds, the moon emerged,
and my paradise was rediscovered. "

The words spinned in my head and grew more defined as I whizzed away towards another impending holiday experience. I lulled myself into a reverie, my thoughts moving without a tail, but my eyes constantly registering. As we moved, I gazed at horizons, rolling pastures, and other cars on the freeway full of cheerful holiday goers. Life felt beautiful. A nice long 6 hour drive gives you just the sort of time to reflect, relish, enjoy and just be yourself.

The skies were a rich purple as evening neared. And my world changed. Snowflakes gently descended, breathtakingly beautiful and soft. It was the sort of nameless, silent invitation into all that was going to occupy my next three days. I squeaked and clung to my frosty window now gathering the flakes. I traced my little masterpiece on the window, in childish delight. The exact happiness that accompanied that moment of simple joy cannot be explained. It was nearing night and the city lights glimmered in the far distance, a connected network of neon blues and fiery reds sitting snug amongst all the snow. I reflected endlessly on how civilizations and nature can live in this harmonious co-existence. In the darkness, the fresh white of snow was piercing my eyes. Yes, I was about to walk in my winter wonderland….there was something about the way that snow was quietly gathering that made me clear the moisture on my frosty window again and again for better views…..and Taylor Swift screamed my classic country favorites from my i-pod:
“A don’t think that the passenger seat has ever looked this good to me….”
I agreed with her, in between flickering lights and racing shadows, whirling colours, and late night snow.

And adventure, was in store. When we finally parked, I rushed out into the inviting wide open, throwing my arms wide open, embracing the winds and taking a fresh lung full. The refreshing winds invaded my soul, lifting, liberating, unleashing. And slowly, I turned around in the dead of the night, twirling to a remembered melody, when no one was looking, in the middle of the parking lot…..the magic, would unfold.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Time to Dust the Cobwebs!

The New Year has come and gone, and there is still so much more to expect. For me, New Year is a convenient excuse to clean all the clutter in my head and dust a few cobwebs. Come New Year, I end up blaming the previous year for everything that possibly went wrong. With the past bearing the wrath of my unjust insults, I leave it behind, to step into a new tomorrow with thousands of resolutions and many more wishful dreams. I cannot prevent this burst of optimism, and it’s been something I have always enjoyed and celebrated. But I also continually reflect, as is my irritable nature, I try to find reasons for everything.

In the incredible flurry of activity in the past year, I have felt my obsession for personal growth fade, along with many other hobbies. Things that interested hold my attention no longer, and things that I considered boring have come to occupy an important position in my life. Lost hobbies, and old habits, new addictions and better obsessions. Sometimes, I wonder how things can change so quickly as time progresses. But I also understand that some habits need to be seeded, and others, weeded. And the New Year is a perfect excuse, to leave certain things behind, and accept some others.

My concentration has been a naughty monkey this year, jumping from branch to branch. Whatever that caught my fancy became an avid hobby, and I pursued with great enthusiasm, even if I knew nothing about it. From bird watching to art to photography to poetry to calligraphy to a mild interest in photoshopping pictures. Concentration wasn’t channelized, but I broadened my horizons. Yes, it has been enjoyable, this experimenting, but not satisfactory. If you keep jumping from one hobby to another, gathering so much pace and leaving your favorites behind, you tend to reach a certain stage of saturation where you grow confused and start to question yourself. And as confused as I have remained all year, there have been repeating questions which have remained unanswered.

Who am I to blame, for my loss of interests? Why don’t I miss my friends as much as I once used to? Why do I forget so much, and remember irrelevant things in great detail? Some habits have stayed strong, and others have melted away. And some hobbies have found gradual decay as have some other things seen rapid progression. Fewer filled pages in my journal, and lots of unfinished stories, more pictures in my album, and an expanded knowledge of films, movies and music. No recent best sellers on my bookshelf, but a worn bicycle. Less thought, more action. Less of intelligent talk, and more of gossiping. The thirst to explore and uncover has grown, but I guess I have unknowingly sacrificed so many things in the process. Stories, poems, and sonnets don’t find an end, and stay cluttered, begging for a conclusion. But I chose to orphan them, to pursue things that hold greater interest, the big outdoors. I breathe in the fresh air, and tap my feet to the exhilarating rhythm of life. And while doing that, have I forgotten to be the vigilant diarist, who also captures every experience, treasuring it in her words? The writer in me hasn’t vanished, and my creative instincts haven’t’ disappeared like vapor. But I realize I have cruelly suppressed them, prioritizing differently.

Words have been my best friends, ever since I can remember. They have listened voicelessly and comforted. They have captured experiences, and have earned my respect. When using the computer meant facebooking for twelve hours in the holidays, gloating about chatting with five friends at the same time and following every single thread of conversation, when full-fledged discussions with parents decayed down to hanging phrases, I knew that I had left something behind. I had left me behind. The real me, the one who hears the meaning within the word, whose writing is sporadic and not forced. The one, who tries to stay polite and not intrude the one who answered in complete sentences instead of “omg, k, ttyl.” Yes, I have left much behind, and I think it’s time to reclaim myself and return to hobbies that interested, and fall into my realm of comfort.

Striking that balance is a hard thing, and self-restrain is also difficult to achieve. My unhealthy obsession with networking has eaten away so much of my time and space. The delusion has engulfed me this past one year, but I’m convinced that the virtual is never as genuine as that one handwritten letter that comes to you with love.

So, I’m changing things this New Year. I’m steering clear, and removing the weeds. There is so much to reclaim. A pen pal has been forgotten, among all the million e-mails. A blog has grown dormant, among all the fanatic networking and efforts to reconnect. A mind has grown bored, listening to the same old songs. Books have remained unread, while trying to some sensational bit of news about somebody else’s life. A blog still hasn’t reached its 100th post. I may have gone from being somebody stubborn to being somebody impulsive.

But better things have happened too. I have discovered that photography can be interesting. I have found new friends. I have learnt to be grateful for the littlest things that life has to offer. I have not ceased to find wonders and small miracles in every day experiences. I still find beauty, in every experience, and I still believe in myself. I guess hope, is one habit that has stayed strong. I’m grateful for that too.

This New Year’s resolution has been constructed. I choose to step forward, and also go behind. Reclaim, and not forget. Laugh better and live healthier. Learn more, and never ignore. Work for a cause and find satisfaction. But more importantly, live life like there is no tomorrow, and rediscover. Because it’s never too late for anything. I promise this blog shall see it’s 100th post this year….and there is still so much more to expect!

Yes, it’s time to dust the cobwebs. And I have my duster ready. And also my vigilant pen. Because my poems need an end, as I need a new beginning. It’s time to dust my cobwebs!!!

Happy new year to you all! Hope you keep your resolutions! :)