I have been telling myself since the last December that when January of 2019 comes (or when I go to January), I shall not think about what most men and women (I am not sure of other animals) would be thinking. And what would they be thinking? If I am not wrong in my thinking, I think they would be thinking about keeping some New Year’s resolution. Now, I was telling that to myself in December, and I have been reminding myself of that since the last four days, because I know from experience that most, if not all, of the resolutions are going to come to naught. Yet, now, my fingers are itching to write something, and my brain is telling me that that something has to be the New Year’s resolution. Well, then, I, because I am my brain and body, I must oblige.
This year I am going to write a great deal, but most of my writing would be out of public view, unless I wish to share. I will start writing my first book this year. I am not sure in which year I will finish writing it, because completing a book is a long process. But starting it is important. It is going to be a non-fiction work, though at first my intention was to write fiction (which, I suppose, can wait for a later time). I have too many interesting and painful and funny experiences to recount.
I will learn a new language. I wanted to learn two languages this year, but I want to be more realistic this time, and do what is, to the best of my ability, considering the available time and resources, more achievable. Bangla is my mother tongue but it does not seem to be so. This year I actually thought of making it seem so as well. However, there is another language which is known to majority of Indians and which I can speak but cannot write or read, and that would be the language I would focus on this year, because considering my present situation and place, and by looking at the growing mass of people who seem to know and talk a great deal in this language, I am sure I would be in trouble if I don’t go with the flow. Yes, I am talking about Hindi.
I will read at least 35 books (fiction and non-fiction) though my aim is to read 50. If I don’t reach the star, I will land on the moon.
A small device that fits in your pocket, seem to be consuming too much of my time, in fact, I would say, it is governing my life, and I must stop this from happening. Therefore, if you haven’t got what I mean, I am going to be smart and use my smartphone less often (or only when I have to).
I will learn to cook some new dishes.
I like to travel, but, this year, I suppose, I will focus on saving my money, and I would rather find out more about the places that is not too far from my dwelling.
I will match at least 200 movies and documentaries.
That’s all I can think of at this moment, and there are some more resolutions which are somewhat private in nature, which are best kept to oneself.
I walk from home for office. I stretch my neck and look up toward the sky. It’s dark and cloudy. Today, it might rain, I think. I have been thinking the same for the past few days. I look for my umbrella but it is nowhere in sight. It has been a year that I made any use of it and god knows where it is. Maybe I can buy a brand new umbrella, but I ain’t got no time for it. I don’t want to be late in my office once again like I was yesterday; I’m least inclined to receive a piece of the senior manager’s mind.
Now I’m in my office’s premises. Just as I’m about to go onto the elevator, so it can carry me to the fifth floor where my office is, the sky roars with all its might and gives me a start. It is going to rain, now I’m dead certain. The sky didn’t roar this season until today.
Upon reaching my desk, I pull the chair from behind the desk and switch on the computer system. The computer glows, I look out the window, and what I see brightens me up: it’s raining, and it’s raining ferociously.
Tip, tip, tip, comes the sound of falling rain. It’s falling incessantly – tip, tip, tip – and I know it won’t stop any time sooner. The rain bangs the windowpane of my cabin aggressively. I open the window a little and a few drops of rain falls on my trousers, soaking it wet.
Now, I am visible to my colleagues and a broad smile comes on their faces as well as on my face. As they pass by my desk, they greet me with ‘hi’ and ‘hello’ and I greet them back. On full swing I continue my 9 hours shift and time slips away so swiftly that now I’m ready to go back home.
By the same lift I go down to the ground floor, but lo, what with the roads covered with water all over up to my knees! No passenger vehicle is visible to me, and as I said earlier I got no umbrella to protect me from the rain.
Why, I wonder, should there be a winter vacation and a summer vacation, and no vacation during the rainy days? What would be nicer than spending the rainy days with a cup of tea to sip and some good books to read! So heavenly it would be to spend the rainy days listening to the most melodious of music, or watching the best of movies, and I would prefer silence as much as all other things. Why, at all, do I have to go to office and work! “Money!” cries the heart. Yes, how else will I fill the stomach?
I’m waiting under the cover of a shop for the rain to thin out a little so I can step ahead and walk homeward. It will take at the most 15 minutes for me to reach home paddling. I wait for the rain to thin out. I wait. Two hours have passed; the rain isn’t falling as ferociously as before, now it’s just drizzling. At this hour, that is to say, midnight, the road is empty. I’m the solitary walker, save for a few cars running on and off.
With great difficulty, I walk the road, and now I climb up the steps to my room. I insert the key in the keyhole of the lock and grab the knob of the door and push it. Duh, what is this I see?! The floor is full of water (at least five inches high), where did it come from I cannot tell for sure. As I touch the mattress of my bed, I observe its dampness. Perhaps I can find some leaks somewhere in the ceiling of my room, and if I am successful in doing that, I promise, I wouldn’t hesitate not to pay a month’s rent to the property owner. And, if the owner of the flat tries to act tough, I will blow his head… just kidding.
Tick-tock, tick-tock moves the handle of the clock
“Wait,” you implore, “just a second, please.”
You keep pleading; of you time will make a mock
The handle moves on, no matter you are that or this.
I’m trying not to trifle away my last few days of college life. They are precious. The lecturers keep shouting and screaming all the time that the students need to read, read and read a little more. I read all the time, but everything apart from the college textbooks. And this doesn’t go well with the lecturers. My parents have no clue of what I do. They are happy with everything I do. But, it is high time that I put aside all those books unrelated to my curriculum and do something about the upcoming exam that I’m going to face.
Every time I look at my bookcase, I feel pity for the untouched textbooks prescribed by the University of Mumbai. The books are now catching my eyes, poor things. They are dying for the want of a reader. If they had life in them and mouth to speak, I’m sure they would have threatened me for being a bad owner and for not taking proper care of them. The dust accumulated in their covers can surely be used to block a river.
My friends in the college believe in consuming all the details of such books as though the books were some energy drink for them. At least for a short time, I think, I should follow their path and be a part of the rat race. I have to, as long as I’m a college student. My life in the present college is going to end shortly.
Dear fellow-bloggers, this is not good-bye, I shall be back by the first week of May. My parents always say: “Never say goodbye”. Say: “see you”. Therefore, dear friends, I will catch up with your posts once I’m back, till then, happy blogging. See you all!
It was 4.30 in the morning when the alarm of my phone started giving me a tough time. And I had to bear with Eminem’s socially inappropriate lyrics, for it had been my phone’s alarm tone. I was reluctant to wake up. It was a cold morning. Everything was still. I shut Eminem up by pressing the snooze option of the phone. I pulled the blanket over my head, squeezed and curled myself in the bed, and was off to dreamland.
At 5 o’clock the phone rang once again. I wanted to snooze it like I did a little while ago, and like I do every day until it stops ringing, but this time it was a different music, not the alarm tone by any chance. I halfheartedly opened my eyes, stretched my hands, and with the right hand I picked up the phone and glancing at it I saw Aravind’s name flash on it.
Aravind is a very good friend of mine. Although he looks aged with his bulging belly and the stiff mustache, but internally he is quite immature and very innocent. He proves his immaturity very often by doing things which a man of his age never does. Some people find him a bit pestering, but I like him. He has always been very good to me.
I pressed the accept button to speak. He yelled out of sheer excitement, just like a kid: “Goa… Goa, Goa!” Then he paused for a moment gasping heavily, and then he spoke again, his sentences ending before he could complete them: “The girls… wearing bikinis… resort, dazzling beaches… wake up! Wake up!”
Realization hit me hard like a stone to a glass, we were supposed to go to Goa today, “Ah, quite so,” I said.
As a rule set my Mumbai University, all the Management Students must go on an industrial visit. I suppose, to make us aware about our future responsibilities, or to let us know how we are supposed to struggle for money. It was the teachers’ duty to take care of that, that is to say, to organize industrial visits for the students every year.
The last two years I could not make it to any of the industrial tour because I was not interested, moreover, I had no time for it. But this time I was determined not to miss this opportunity. This is my final year in the college, and if I missed it I would suffer from a void feeling which might as well torture my conscience as I grow older. I’ve never been to Goa. I wanted to see what Goa was like. So I paid Rs. 4000 (like everyone did) for the same and decided to go to Goa.
Aravind was waiting for me in his car. I hurried up, and briskly and noiselessly got into the car. “I’m here.” Soon we reached Panvel station from where all the students were supposed to get on board of a train – Jan Shatabdi had been the train’s name – at 6.00 a.m. I met other friends, and the three lecturers (all women) who accompanied us, or who were suppose to keep an eye on us, in case someone led us astray. Ha!
We kept waiting for the train. As it always happens, the train moved forward, rattling inch by inch quite leisurely at OUR timing – the Indian timing, and finally came to a halt. It was late by half-an-hour. The shrilling of its engine wasn’t at all inviting.
The friends’ parents came to the station to see the friends off. These followed thereon: embracing, shaking hands, wiping tears from the eyes… as if they were bidding goodbye for a long time or maybe forever. The tour was just for 4 days, and nothing more. Overflowing affection, ha!
I was looking for my seat as I got into the train, and when I was able to find it out, I saw an elderly man sitting on it. “Sir, I believe, you’re sitting on my chair,” I said. He was least bothered. I raised my voice, and then he said it was his seat. “How could that be possible?” I questioned.
“Very,” he replied laconically.
“Very?” I found myself repeating his word, but only interrogatively. A little argument followed. I summoned the TC and discovered that the elderly man was speaking the truth. I felt embarrassed before the elderly man, the TC, and other passengers. I foamed at the mouth. I had to stand for half an hour in the train; some of my friends did the same.
I went to the lecturers with my complaint. I kept stuttering for sometime before speaking plainly. Yes, when I get very angry, or very excited, I stutter. Let me say it once again, I st-tu-tut-tut-tut-stut-ter.
One of the lecturers arranged a seat for me, and slowly all the other students were able to sit down comfortably. But I wanted to know why there was the confusion regarding the seat. We did pay the money then why should there be any problem at all? When asked, the lecturers had no idea why it was so; there was no answer for me. Perhaps, the agent of People2Place (who provided us the travel service) made a mistake. Anyhow, I was able to sit and relax, my anger melted, and I had no more problems and no more questions.
The train jerked and rattled, picked up speed, and along we moved on. I tried to register everything in my mind through the view from the window. But, alas, it was a misty December morning, and it made my visibility unclear. No doubt it looked beautiful. Sometimes neon signs flicked through as the train made its way, and I was curious to know what was beneath the foggy atmosphere: Perhaps homes, mountains, a bazaar, animals, or such other things.
I decided to read a book, the best way to eat up time, but the friends wouldn’t let me. They (the boys) inherited the girls’ hormone. They kept on talking tirelessly and continuously. Some guys had a voice as melodious as Justin Bieber, and I could make little difference as to who was the guy and who the gal.
We reached Goa and checked-in to our resort. A very beautiful resort it was, with greenery all-around, a swanky swimming pool that was made more appealing by the alluring golden-haired, brown-eyed girls swimming and dancing in it. A friend of mine exclaimed: “This is it!” I gave him a puzzled look, and he explained, “Besides the beaches and the wine, I wanted to see this and nothing more.” He pointed his fingers towards the women in bikinis swimming in the pool, and towards another who was reclining on her rocking chair, smoking, exhaling circles of smoke, and reading a book at the same time. “Ah, it seems like a movie. This is exactly how they look in the movies. Oh my god, I feel like a star!” He said, expressing mirth. The other friends laughed back at him, not with him, mind you.
We freshened up and learnt that we were going to a very famous and the finest beach in Goa called Baga beach. The boys wore shorts, so did the girls. But the girls invited some criticisms from the lecturers for doing so. My friends disapproved of the lecturers’ gesture. A guy said, “What problem do the teachers have with the students? They never want to see us happy. This is only time we get to see some skin, and … “
A lecturer approached towards him making a strange face, and he thought it best to shut up and stay mum. I knew what he was trying to convey. But he meant it only for fun without having any bad intention. Nevertheless, the girls adhered to their dressing style; after all, they were going to a beach and not to a church or a temple.
We went to Baga beach, swam to our heart’s content. A friend, upon seeing a bikini-clad foreigner, wanted to click a photo with her. But she refused. The friend looked a little disappointed and brokenhearted, we couldn’t help but laugh and laugh, and laugh a little more.
A lady friend lost her camera somewhere in the beach or in the shops nearby, and started crying. Girls of our college always cry no matter what, “I won’t go back home if I don’t get the camera,” she said. All the other girls started crying as well, as if the camera was a lifesaving drug for them. The lecturers told us to help her find the camera, it happened to be a very expensive one. We went to find it, and luckily we found it. It was in a shop, the shopkeeper was a morally upright, very kindhearted and noble man (such persons are very scarce today, aren’t they?) and returned the camera back to its rightful owner. We thanked him and were off to our resort.
Then, we danced to the tunes of the Disc jockey in the swimming pool as dusk set in; it was especially organized for us. After that we had a hearty dinner.At the crack of midnight we retired to our beds.
During the night I could not sleep properly because of a friend’s snoring who slept beside me. The whole night he kept on torturing me by producing strange sounds: grarrrrr… graaaaaaarrrrrr… grrrrarr….graarrrrrrr… This followed in the same fashion till the remaining days in Goa. I told him to change his sleeping position hoping to see some changes in his breathing. He changed his position, but it was of no avail. I felt like defenestrating him, but thought the better of it.
In the next day, we went to another world-famous dazzling beach –Calangute beach– in north Goa for water sports. These are the sports we enjoyed: Banana boat ride, Bumper ride (the force of the water did a good bum massage), Para-sailing (we paid extra for extra pleasure), Jet Ski (I rode, by paying extra, of course). In the night we went boat cruising. ‘Coral Queen’ had been the cruiser’s name. Some cultural dances were displayed on it. We watched and loved it.
The next day we went to Coca Cola Company, that’s the main reason for which we were in Goa. An instructor demonstrated us the functioning of the machines and all other stuff related to the production of beverage. At first I thought the instructor was not an instructor but a security guard. His dressing style was overly simple. But when he started speaking in fluent English, and started explaining us everything about the manufacturing process, I found him a very knowledgeable, genial, and modest person. Oh, and he wore a big smile every time he spoke.
Then we proceeded towards old Goa and visited BIG FOOT Cross Museum which is a centre for preservation and promotion of Art, Culture and Environment. Then we visited the historical church of St. Francis Xavier, and an archaeological museum nearby.
The next day we visited Fort Aguada. After that we were on our way back to Aamchi Mumbai.
I must say, Goa, with its mighty Sea, good-natured people, and its proximity to other huge cities such as Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, is really attractive, enticing, and fascinating.
There is something soothing about Goa. For a writer, it’s the best place to live. The surroundings are quite, serene and peaceful. Goa, I’m sure, would alleviate your mental agony, and make you feel that life is worth living.
Thus, we concluded our journey; it was a thrilling experience, at least for me. Now, as I finish writing this, I am missing Goa a lot.
P.S.: I could have written a lot more, but as it is, it already looks very daunting. I don’t want to bore my readers, and definitely my blog is not a book.
Do you waste time?
Well, I’m not sure if you do or not, but I do. I really do. And how do I do it? Here is how:
I stretch out my hands and try to grab a book from my bookcase, but I keep pondering over which book should I pick: should it be a novel or any other book that I can read for pleasure, entertainment, and fun and so on? Or Should it be a book related to my curriculum that would help me during the exams?
When I finally decide to choose the best option, once again I get baffled with the different genres and the wide range of authors and their works available, they all seem worth reading (or is it tempting the better word?) and I keep changing hands with books this way. And, thinking this, I spend more time then I would have spent otherwise, and to be very honest, I end up reading nothing at all; eventually I blame myself for wasting my time doing nothing worthwhile. So, here I think the vast option is the main culprit that leads me to procrastinate.
When I start my computer and sit in front of it, I keep on shuffling files from one folder to the other. I try to read some Portable Document Format (PDF) files which I have downloaded (a lot of it) absolutely free of cost from the internet. Well, I’m not a very rich guy nor are my parents, that I can buy all the books I want to read, therefore, the free books from the internet serves a really good purpose for me, moreover, one can get access to those books which are no longer available in print or which has been banned considering it to be blasphemous or for any other reason, take the example of satanic verses, just type ‘satanic verses pdf’ on Google or any other search engine you prefer, and depending upon the speed of your internet it gets downloaded (in case you wish to download it). This is not something new; I know most people are already aware about it.
Now, this is not something bad that I do, but when I overdo it (as I do, most often) it becomes worse. I unnecessarily arrange the files according to the authors and genres on a daily basis. This is where the problem lies. I don’t really read anything for more than half-an-hour for my mind wishes to be somewhere else, and one more time, instead of doing something productive, I spend more time on Facebook, Google plus, checking e-mails, and so on and so forth. The time spent on such activities equals the time I spend while I sleep.
I keep moving from one end of my room to the other, absolutely unnecessarily. Not exactly knowing what I intend to do as If I allow deep thoughts to make room in my head. And, indeed, for a moment or two, some really enlightening thoughts come to my mind, but, alas, they vanish as soon as I grab a pen in my hand and try to put the thoughts on paper.
All right that’s about it, I can go on writing more about my weakness, however I don’t seem to remember more as of now, but, I’m really trying to be productive and trying to dedicate my time to something that really matters to me, more importantly because I came across a poem while teaching my neighbor’s kid who is in the fifth standard. The poem is really motivational as well as apt to my situation (I guess). It is called ‘One Thing at a time’ written by M.A. Stodart:
Work while you work,
Play while you play;
To be useful and happy,
That is the way
All that you do,
Do with your might;
Things done by halves
Are never done right
One thing at a time,
And that do well,
Is a very good rule,
As many can tell
Moments should never
Be trifled away;
So work while you work,
And play while you play.