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Friday, July 30, 2004

When you're strange - 1

Something I had written all of six years ago:

Emotions are the basis of life. Without emotions man is just an animal, a savage. Intellect, learning, education, wealth, status, everything is just a farce. A man devoid of emotions is like a ship's sail without wind, like a skydiver without his parachute, like the morning without the dawn, like the night without the moon. Faith can move mountains but emotions can build them.

In today's materialistic world how many of us can claim to have an iota of emotion left in us? To be emotional or sentimental is considered to be weak , to be without manhood. What a wrong notion this is. People with feelings are the strongest people on earth. These are the people who can feel. They are not senseless because they believe in the very basis of life. These people are sensitive, sensitive to the world around them, sensitive to other' s feelings and emotions, they care for the world and are their brothers' keepers. These are the people who make up the true brethren. These are true men who can balance materialism with feelings.

I am told so many times to forget feelings and sentiments, leave them behind in my quest for knowledge and learning, to forget about such trivial things or at least keep romanticism under control; which is another way of telling me to become an unfeeling brute. Yet I am convinced that this is the only salvation for mankind, which is fast forgetting values. Not the kind of petty, shallow emotions which rule our everyday life, and our actions. Not the kind that make us act in anger or fear. Not the kind that make us act in ways that hurt or harm. Not the kind that teaches man to fight, kill, maim, burn, wage war. But the other kind of deeper, truer emotions that every one of us should cultivate. The kind that heal, that teach us to love, to work for the greater glory of God and mankind. The kind that makes us gentle, thoughtful, disciplined, temperate. The kind that let our thoughts and emotions soar like birds, to daydream and be lost in contemplation and meditation.

So gentle reader, what do you choose? The path to material wealth, riches, exterior pomp and show or the deeper, truer, emotional upliftment of the heart and soul. The choice is of course yours. You may dismiss this as some poor misguided, romantic soul's silly words but someday you' ll know better.

That day I shall have won a great victory.

PS: I used to write strange stuff.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

The heart of love

Does it profit me to gain the whole world?
Satisfaction is but a fleeting emotion, I want to to be satiated
Fill me up with love, until my cup of joy spills over
That I might share with you
That I might show you a glimpse of what is mine
Leave you jealous, wanting more
I laugh
I cry
I die a hundred deaths
And then, born again, maybe I learn to love.

Time is but a beginning
Of the end
When I know what love is.

The music flows gently
I hear, but I cannot listen
Like the heart that loves, but does not care
Like the soul that prays, but does not believe
Like the mind that thinks, but does not meditate.

My thoughts scatter like scared gazelles
Leaping across the universe of my mind
Why do they flee?
Be still, I tell my mind.

I mouth the words of a prayer
They are a litany to be repeated
When I ask God for more
Trust, I tell my soul.

And what of my heart?

I long
I sigh
The notes fall softly
If I can learn to hear
Can I learn to love?
Can I?

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Autoricks overturning??

Hell! When was the last time you've seen an auto rickshaw overturning right before your very eyes? Here's a story from one who has... not once but twice. Its quite a majestic sight, almost like the movies where a car might go cartwheels, only not so dramatic.

The first happened on bright, fair, Wednesday morning in front of the Symphony Software building. I was on my way to the Passport Office, when suddenly, in front of me an auto took a fast turn into the main gate of the company, and tipped over the other side. Phaaat! I skidded to a halt behind it, and with others rushed to help.

As if that was not enough, I saw another first hand! I was on my way home late evening yesterday. It had rained mightly, and the road near the flyover in front of Citibank (road, what road?) was awash. Mind you that the potholes here are bigger than small ponds. An auto beside me swing on to the side of the road to overtake a car, and then it just topped over on its side into this huge pothole full of dirty water. I braked in the middle of the road, and again rushed to help. Others came running too. But we didnt seem to have much luck pushing it upright, and the water was all around. After a few minutes impatient people were honking coz my bike was holding up the only lane, so I left the auto and pushed off.

I think there's a message for me in there somewhere, but danged if I know what.
Moral of the story? Auto ricks are dangerous 3 legged creatures, ridden by drivers with delusions of grand prix grandeur. No wonder our foreign clients look at them in wonder, and ask dumb questions like "Isnt it dangerous?". Phooey, say I to that. We drive around at breathless speed on roads full of shush, without helmets, zig zagging all over the road, overtaking, undertaking (well, whatever), without any semblance of road democracy, all on two wheels, and we have the gall to question the third wheel. Phooey.

Anyway, next time you travel by an auto (as Ekta does everyday), do keep your friends close, and your enemies, ur... auto-drivers closer. Dunno what good that will do, but it sounded like good advice.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Passport hangama

On Monday I had the priviledge of visiting the Passport Office for more than 4 hours. I have a special passport for Israel, which had been issued to me for all of 1 year. This passport is about to expire, and I need to travel to Israel again. Off I went to the Passport Office to enquire about the procedure of renewing this passport.

Now if you have ever had the good opportunity of visiting Bangalore's Passport Office, you'll sympatise with me. If not, all I can say is "Good things come to those who wait". Anyway, I digress.

First stop: a long snaking enquiry queue, which wound it way along the wall to the outside into the compound. Took 2 hours to reach the counter, first standing, then playing musical chairs.

Armed with the info, I hit the next queue, even longer than the first at Counter 4 "Misc services". I was the second last person in this queue, and I finished in 2 hrs. By which time my stomach was crying for attention. Ok, now food!

I need this passport urgently, and these guys want to post the passport to me after a week. So I wanted to know how to come and collect it myself. Simple, they said. Get a letter from the company, get an appointment with the Asst Passport Office, and voila, it'll be done.

Wednesday, the saga continues. This time its a 1 1/2 hour wait in another long queue for getting an appointment with the APO. By now, the gentle reader will appreciate that the Passport Office is a wonderful place, well ordered, working smoothly like a well oiled machine. Finally, had the appointment with the APO. I was overjoyed, mission accomplished. Now a quick hello to the APO and off I go to work. My mouth drooling at all the work I can accomplish at the office now.

Upstairs, there was another (you guessed it) queue at the APO's office, but a small one. And this queue really crawled. My previous visit to the APO, when I was getting the Israel passport made on Tatkal, was very quick. This took me all of 3 hrs. The reason was soon obvious, this guy was getting calls right and left, and we could hear him talking on the phone. What a pathetic little bugger. And there were people who kept dropping in to visit him.

I was getting really pissed. The next time 2 guys came to meet him, I showed them the end of the queue. They were throughly astonished. Then one said in a threating voice, that they were government officials, and I should not question them. (How dare I? Bad Cheetah!) Imagine the cheek of these bastards. They said they'd come to meet the APO, and taken an appointment. They said they were not here for a personal visit.

I said that I'd taken an appointment to meet the APO personally, and ask him his "haal chaal", maybe invite him for dinner. Me and my big mouth. I saw that my brand of humour was not tickling them, so I went back to the comfort of my seat. Then bitched till my turn came. The APO, surprisingly, was very efficient. He took a few minutes to hear my story, and said that the passport would be ready tomorrow.

I raced off into the sunset, ur.. office, my little "panga" all forgotten in the delight of getting the passport so fast. God bless the APO.

Friday, July 09, 2004

10 dys vacation

...from Blogger. Forced by work. Ekta, there is only one commandment of life. All work shall be squeezed out of you. If in doubt, refer to the above commandment.

I'm in depression from not blogging, from not telling my mundane story to the world for the last sooo many days. Sigh. Life sucks, like gravity. Like a whole lotta people. Anyway, I digress. I've been really busy, what with a gruelling prospective client visit, and crisis after crisis in the office. The only bright spot this week was that this prospective client signed up, after 3 days of technical and business talks. So I'm off to Israel again. More power to me. In all this work, I've missed my MBA classes today. Shit! ANd I'll miss two days of classes when I'll be travelling. ANd I cant even say NO!

I left office today morning, after a stretch of 22 hours, completely bushed. Slept (?) all morning, woken up first by the maid, then by some girl selling flowers, then by the painter, then by the garbage collector. Fuck! Then had lunch, and back to the office.

Now, m leaving. Hope I dont have to come this weekend, but there are many problems and few assholes who want to take them all up. One of them, being me. I suck. So I'm going home. To sulk, and study for tomorrow's MBA class. Bah.