Friday, March 28, 2008

One day....

Awakened by the chirping of the birds, she stretched languorously and looked around. She saw him, asleep, dead to the world. Should she wake him up? Perhaps not! She should first fill her stomach. She tip toed to the kitchen, and looked disdainfully at the mice scampering around. She was so hungry that she felt she could eat anything. Ignoring them, she gulped the milk and the food kept nearby. She looked around and smiled, the kitchen was in a mess…boy, he is going to be so angry!

She went back, and again looked at him. The urge to wake him up got stronger. She went near and tickled his foot. He nudged her away and rolled to the other side. She persisted and licked his face.

He knocked her off again. Miffed, she stormed out. She could make it on her own. She didn’t need him. She walked and walked smelling the early dawn. Suddenly, she felt someone following her. All her senses awakened, she turned around to see Bholu leering at her. Uhoh!! That seemed like trouble. After the torrid affair last summer, he had never ever forgiven her for dropping him. The least he could have done was live up to his name. She took a right turn and saw another familiar figure walking towards her, hairy Goldie. What kind of name was Golden?

She stopped warily, trapped between the two of them, wondering whether this was the end. They stepped closer and closer,  she watched intently,  frozen and caught.

Suddenly she heard a whistle, a welcome sound.

”Here kitty…here…where’s that dratted cat gone?” muttered the voice.

She gave a triumphant meow and bounded towards the voice, relieved to have all her nine lives intact.

writer's island

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The mask

This time sunday scribblings came with a "smorgasbord" of ideas and that is proving to be my nemesis. Try as i might, i'm just not able to decide on THE pompt, from the 101 (yes, 101). I'm equally worse at a buffet...

so my two cents on masks...and...morning

I love my morning tea. This is the only time i have when i sit looking out of my window at the clear skies, feeling the early morning nip and hearing the birds chirp. Sipping tea with the hubby in silence but yet so connected...I need those ten minutes of silence before I come back to earth and wear my masks for the day. Before I throw myself into the hustle bustle of routine.

Everyone wears some kind of mask. There are innumerable occasions where I have been forced to be someone else, either because society demands it or because there is no other way out. The only time perhaps I am just myself is when I am alone with that little core of people who form my family.

Writing my blog was something which gave me happiness and allowed me a way to explore thoughts and ideas, mostly through prose and on few occasions as poems. Here I thought I could be myself and speak my mind. And it worked too, for a long while. But now, I wish I had maintained my mask of anonymity, but being me, I have let the whole world know who I am...Slowly you become aware of other readers' sensibilities, of blog etiquette, of minding my p's and q's.

With blogs being a public display of thoughts, you cannot choose your readers. You write with the hope that they are read by like-minded people, which has happened in my case. i've met wonderful people this way and i'm not going to stop. But recently I came across a friend's poem on his blog where his comment space soon became a sparring ground, with one person criticizing the quality (not the content, but the quality) and the others defending the writer. Surprising, because it was a nice poem, but the reader felt it was below the standard. Whose standards was he talking about?

So I ask myself, do I have to wear a mask here too so that I can be myself...? or do i have to wear one so that I can be someone else?

Saturday, March 1, 2008


I still remember that trip in the bus when i got down seething with anger and humiliation, looking back at the sea of leering faces wondering who it was...(It was nothing compared to what most go through but enough for me to get down immediately at the next stop.)That was my last trip on any bus. It was the first time i had used the public transport in Delhi, inspite of being told not to.I was young then and did not want to feel dependant on the car or my husband for everything. This incident was a shock to me, coming as i had from a sheltered life. Relating this incident to a local friend, she informed me that pins, and sharp objects formed part of the necessary weaponry, that every girl must use for her defence. This is what every girl using the public transport goes through. That was the day I felt the weight of the shackles...the shackles of my gender. They were always present in other forms, only i had never noticed it.

Since then i find my safety in crowds, in my vehicle and in the reassuring presence of a male. I knew now never to venture in lonely areas, never to walk out alone after dark, to always take care of how i dress. I even got used to it.

And so it continued, till i reached Singapore. This place is amazing. It gives you that feeling of security. I found myself using the public transport without fear. I cycle around and don't feel intimidated by strangers in a lonely park.

I savor the freedom to dress the way i want, the freedom to walk where I choose, ALONE, the freedom to be myself. It is a freedom which empowers me. It saddens me that an alien country gave me back what my own couldn't - my right as a woman. Strangely i feel empowered here...but i know it will only last till that day when i go back...

but having tasted this freedom, would i start binding those shackles all over again...?

This was in reponse to the writer's prompt...empowerment. i wanted to write about something else but ended up writing something more personal.

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