Thursday, January 31, 2013

Train Post 2: later into the day

I land in Bombay today (or since I am coming by train should I say crawl). The 'city of dreams' it has been called rhetorically – I shall see what it turns out for me. I look forward to meeting my advisor tomorrow somewhere in Santa Cruz. There is a lot going on in the mind right now. Flashes from the conference, workshop safari, my blink-and-miss stopover at home and here I find myself in this train going from one Rajdhani (Capital city) to another. Intermittently, I also miss London. Unlike before. The missing is more in terms of pangs. Piercing till I shake it off. I miss London streets I was regular to, going to buy the grocery from Tesco. The most predictable of things are the ones I miss – like the chill, the rain, the slight shiver, the hostel and the hostel kitchen where I used to cook. I don't miss the monuments much but I do miss the nameless streets and people I met there. AND the tick tock of my boots! It is all in flashes too, places where at times I lit a cig, walked a bit, sat for mere view, wrote in the mind, talked on phone while on walks.

Eddying out to the present - I can see what makes India tick. No wonder from Switzerland to Tanzania everywhere Indians are known for their business acumen, more specifically how they 'capture the market'. Right before me is a handsome chap I presume to be a Gujarati. Got in the train at 6 am from Surat. I was sleeping at the time and was woken up for tea. This fellow has been talking of costing (coasting), increment, interest rates, selling (sailing), market price, products, competitors blah blah blah ad nauseam. All 'strategizing' in the world is apparently happening on this very train. I couldn't yawn more. A while ago I saw him reading a book (which got me to take note of his looks in the first place). Through the corner of my eye I caught the name on the spine and realised that even this was a business strategy kitaab! I now overhear that it has been gifted to him and it talks about the right to competition and strategy and how to make max. profit. And now that he is explaining to others he declares with pride, "the author Michael XXX says "don't compete to be the best compete to be unique." How I wish he would shut THE HELL up.

Everyone else on the bogey is listening with rapt attention. The earnestness on the chap's face makes me feel so sorry for him, his book makes me feel how poor we are, my lack of interest in this 'enlightening' conversation makes me feel like this train won't ever halt, and my being stuck in this cabin makes me claustrophobic.

GO DIE! (It kinda catches on.)

Train Post 1

Date: January 31, 2013, 
Somewhere in Gujarat or Maharashtra, 
Time: whatever it is it is LATE

I write this from the train. En route Bombay. As always happens with me, I wrote in bits and pieces last night. Not a word do I recollect although at the time I was sure of my unfailing memory. The train that I am travelling in – the August Kranti Rajdhani - is an hour late, because of fog apparently. I'm wearing a salwar kameez and feeling cold in the air conditioned train.

Last month was quite eventful. It breakfasted in the hospital, lunched in Tanzania and hopefully will dine in Bombay. Being a Delhiite I can't help but see Bombay with a little disdain. I am perhaps too used to the space around me - the circumference where my 'aura' prospers, you see. Yeah, I am a spoilt Delhi girl whose daddy gave her a car when she turned 23.

I miss having long conversations. I miss being inspired. Have been trying to find the right word for "prabhavit' (no, 'affected' doesnt sound right enough) I think 'inspired' could be one.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

hard times

It's 2013 now.  Christmas, New Year have all gone by in the hospital. I rescheduled my return to Delhi to come home early so I could be with her. And in this time I prayed, I cried, I shivered – while spending sleepless nights in the semi-ICU ward. She is better now, though recovery shall take 2-3 months.