Posts tagged ‘in real life’

Fly me away / Fly me home*

Daily prompt:  Share a story about the furthest you’ve ever traveled from home.

————————————————————————————————

A 22 year old who had never before travelled long distance without her family, stepped on to foreign soil. She parted company with her travelling colleagues – they had made the international flight together and bonded despite just having met at the departing airport; bonded in the way only those can who know they are about to spend the next 22 odd hours travelling and that to do so without any company at all would be utterly lonely. Now their ways separated, each on to his or her own domestic leg of the journey, some to the hinterland in a straight flight, some via a hop to another city. She had a hop, and a skip as well. Two breaks before she reached a city that was to house her for the next 2 months. Home was behind, what was ahead was a new place, both exciting in its possibilities and terrifying in its unknownness.

She bid farewell to her fellow travellers, saw them off on their flights and waited for her connection. Sitting, observing, seeing fellow travellers, fellow countrymen, foreigners; nay they were the localites now and she was the foreigner. And then she boarded her flight, and realized that it contained not one of her numerous,omnipresent countrymen. All around her were  white/pink faces, the loud tones and cadences of Americans, the accents totally strange to her, the flight announcements in an English almost undecipherable. And she suddenly realised exactly how far she had travelled from home, how far she had left everything familiar, how unknown to her all these people were.

Since then she has visited a few more countries, a few more places, with or without friends and family, but has never felt as far from home as she did on that very first flight alone.

* The airlines she flew on on that trip had baggage tags which said ‘Fly me away’ or ‘Fly me home’. Hers said ‘Fly me away’.

A pinch of you

This week’s writing challenge is absolutely gorgeous. It asks for ‘your best recipes’ .. all the bits and pieces and quirks and foibles and loves that make you you. And while I am not writing out a recipe about me (not yet, not yet, anyway), here’s what I made up about my niece, who I totally gush over as can be seen. And I loved writing this so much, I figure there are going to be a lot more posts on this recipe theme. A lot more.

Good things come in small packages. Here’s the littlest one. This is a work in progress, so the recipe and ingredients will change over time and places and reactants and scenarios.

This small package is currently all knees and elbows, which seem about a hundred. Count multiple times until you get the figure down to two of each. Once that’s settled, look for the 2 really lovely large eyes. What these hint towards I can’t tell you, but it has been known to range from mischief, tears, smiles, wonder, absolute happiness to coyness as well. Make no mistake, there is a lot more, and, you can’t choose. You take what you get.

Next, voice. Figures, right? After the sight comes the sound. Varies from the happyish head over heels babble to the soft slop of the sucked thumb to the rare angry rageful shout. Oh and sometimes an excited scream, when objects of affection like mama and baba and mango pulp are nearby.

These major things when you mix together, you get a sweet armful of baby to cootchie coo with. No wait, you don’t get that armful of baby, ‘coz that armful pulls your hair and pushes out legs and demands to be set down, at which point those hundred knees and elbows are promptly put into motion and used to scarper away at a speed of 100 times light to act out another mischief.

An oldish man, sitting on the aisle end of a bus seat. Run down in appearance, with frayed and not very clean clothes. Stooping over, either from sleep, or some illness, or age, or something else entirely. Clutching a dusty big plastic bag on his lap. Oh, and his right arm in a sling underneath his shirt, with just the bandaged hand gaping out to hold the plastic bag.

A definitely old woman, sitting next to him, on the window side of the same seat. Rural in appearance, with a brightly coloured, clean sari worn in the older nauvari(1) style, with padar(2) draped over her head. From appearances, a dragon accustomed to defending her and hers, and of giving life two knocks back if it dared to give her one.

They do not seem to be together.

The man has a tough time hanging on to his bag, which slips and falls down, which he then has difficulty picking up. In the process, he bumps against the dragon, his hand and arm brush against her. The dragon then breathes fire on the presumption of the man, and speaks loudly and nastily on how he can’t hold his seat and deliberately brushes her. The man doesn’t respond, at all. Just picks up his bag and sits quietly, as much as he can.

Much later, someone who accompanies the lady helps her get up from the seat in order to get down at her stop. She is stooping now, and her age is more visible. She slowly walks ahead, a step a minute. The bus driver is impatient. She shuffles, and pauses at the head of the steps. She needs help getting down. An old, shaky hand grabs hers. Provides the support she needs to lean on while getting down the steps. That done, the bus starts and the old man then returns to his seat.

What does this act say about the woman? And the man?

(1)http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kasta_sari
(2)Padar: Loose end of the sari

Overheard

Two girls hunched over a crossword puzzle in the bus …

Girl 1: The clue for the next word is ‘State of Uncertainty’. Number of letters are..

Girl 2: I know. The answer is ‘Love’.

Girl 1: No silly. It’s 5 letters. And the answer is ‘Limbo’.

(Me: 😀 😀 )

 

 

Picturesque

At work..

I was cleaning up my communicator contact list, removing some folks and adding some, grouping them by team functions.

After a while, I sat back to look at the final list. From one particular team, there were Hills, and Brooks and a Moor(e) staring back at me.

I admit I was grinning away for a full five minutes after that.

Shatranj ke Khiladi

*This post is my attempt to put in words what I saw. A bird’s eye view pitcure would have been a zillion times better, but couldn’t be clicked. Read and imagine, is all I can say.

I was in an auto navigating it’s way through a very notorious crossroad near my office. It is famous for lack of traffic constables and traffic signals, and hence occurrence of nasty traffic snarls with vehicles of all sizes crossing in all directions. Yesterday, at the core of one such snarl was a van/sumo, owned by some company and with the brand name marked on the side. This van was surrounded on all sides by autos, cars, buses, 2-wheelers and was both the reason of the snarl and an effect of it. It couldn’t move forward due to traffic in 1 direction and couldn’t backout due to traffic in the other direction. Couldn’t move right or left because of traffic in other 2 perpendicular directions. If there was a gap and the van tried to make it, someone else cut it off. The van had nowhere to go.

Got the scene in your mind? Here’s the clincher.

The logo on the side of the van was ‘CHECKMATE’.

Conversation with the old, sardarji cabbie who drove me home today.

Cabbie: Sab theek hai na? Aap tension mein lag rahe ho.  {Is everything alright? You seem worried.}

Me: Haan sab theek hai. Bas aage ke roads band hain aur late bhi hua hai, isliye .. {Yes, everything’s fine. Just that the roads ahead are closed and it is quite late in the day.}

Cabbie: Abhi late kahan hua hai! Abhi to sirf 12 (am) baj rahe hain. {It’s not late. It’s only 12 am yet.}

How can you not love Mumbai for this??