Moving On

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Moving On

I have always believed that our life is a continuous journey and a culmination of numerous transient moments. Time never stops – but the good news is we are the pilot. All we need is to live these moments and enjoy this gift of life.

This is a picture of a small, unknown railway station of a village, glimmering from the sunshine of a new day – taken from a moving train while travelling – symbolizing the unknown, transient moments of our life.

Transient

The Futile Hope

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“Come on mate, don’t get so stressed okay? Everything will be fine.”, Ben tried to comfort me. I stared away from my bed, blankly, gazing outside the window of my cabin in the hospital, a cabin which had become my home for more than two months, finding nothing but emptiness. “Hey, come on – don’t break down so early. You have a long way to go mate. Just let docs operate you.” “Don’t try to give me false assurance Ben. I know you want to relieve me out of stress but sadly it isn’t helping. I know this is incurable and I have got no hope. All I can get is a few more days, hours, minutes than normal.” My voice trembled as I spoke. I knew it was unbelievable to me as well but this was the truth and I had no other choice than accepting it.

Ben buried his face in his hands with a hopeless sigh. He finally rose up and gave a pat on my back and slowly his tall figure with stooping shoulders disappeared from the room. I was left alone. Not alone, but the window of my room was with me. During all these days of loneliness, better to say last days of my life, the window was the one who accompanied me whole day long – rather guarding me from falling into utter darkness. I knew it was nothing unusual – death is a reality just as the Sun rising in the East. Being a bachelor and with an unhappy love life I had no bindings of family as well. But I was sad. I didn’t want to lose the window – the outside world, the world full of joy and life, only a glimpse of which the window gave me.

Suddenly I felt a touch on my feeble hand. I looked up and found Jin standing. I couldn’t believe she would come as we had separated three years back and I hardly had any contact with her for months. She sat down beside me and we both remained silent for long. Ultimately she broke the silence by clearing her throat.

“Why didn’t you tell me Vin?”

“I… Well, I didn’t want you to unnecessarily get bothered about a worthless fellow like me.”

“You really believe that I think about you on that line?”

“I don’t think anything. I just don’t care anymore about anything. I have come alone in this world and go away alone as well. I have no grudges against you or anyone in this world. All I want to remember now is the good things that happened in my rotten life – and I must say most of them are centered around you.”

A drop of tear rolled down from the corner of my eye as I uttered those words. Jin leaned on my shoulder and started weeping silently but uncontrollably. I just couldn’t say anything – it seemed that the thought of approaching death was detaching me from all the worldly ties I had – whatever left of it. I knew I had a subconscious pain buried inside me regarding Jin – but all was passing by when I saw her sorry for all that happened. I was feeling a strange sense of relief – feeling like a free bird.

I looked at the window. It seemed it was smiling at me too, saying, “Look, you were afraid of losing happiness because you always wanted it! Now that you have got happiness from inside – do you fear anymore?” Strangely enough, my fear was disappearing little by little as well. The more I felt satisfied, the more I was feeling complete. To let go all the grudges, pain was filling my heart with an inexplicable satisfaction.

Meanwhile Jin composed herself and found me staring at the window again. She held my hand firmly and said with a firm voice, “I am not going to lose you again Vin.” I was shocked to hear that. I was overjoyed and in utter dismay at the same time. Her words again brought back the feeling of dilemma – dilemma of losing the inner happiness of renouncing all worldly ties vs the worldly happiness of getting tied. I was again stuck at the same question – renunciation or hope, which one to rely? Jin was holding me back here and it seemed I was falling into the worldly dismay again. I just couldn’t give up the “hope” – “hope” to find happiness with the person I love, “hope” to live more in this world.

Relieved

Work in Progress….

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My apologies to all my readers. I am extremely busy currently and hardly getting any time at all to write and even read your stories. I know my readers are expecting me to complete my long pending story and read new ones as well – but frankly I don’t have enough time to think now to write.

I don’t want to write in haste because I don’t write for the sake of writing only – I write with all my understanding and feelings. I am really sorry to be so inactive currently but I promise I will be regular again after sometime. Meanwhile I will be writing occasionally when I find time.. 🙂

Thanks for understanding.. 🙂

 

Living Root Bridges

“Bridges” – we all know about them right? They are used mostly to cross strong rivers, deep gorges, between two cliffs etc. How many types of bridges do we know? Pontoon bridge, cantilever bridge, suspension bridge – and many more. But ever heard of a bridge made of living roots?

Meghalaya
Umshiang Double Decker Bridge ( Credit – Neelima Vallangi )

Yes, this unique wonder exists in Meghalaya, a north-eastern state of India and a plateau geographically, placed just on the “shoulder” of Bangladesh. This is the place receiving the most amount of annual rainfall in the world (the village in Mawsynram).  Being situated at the windward side of Eastern Himalayas, this place is gifted with lush green vegetation of tropical evergreen rainforest. Numerous streams run through the rough terrain, creating a lot of waterfalls on their way. These waterfalls and the streams are normally gentle but becomes pretty rough during the monsoon rains – creating troubles to cross them, for the indigenous tribal people of this area – the Khasi tribe.

In order to overcome this barrier, the elders developed a unique way around 200 years back. Rubber tree roots are collected and made to grow at one side of the river, through the Areca Nut trees, commonly found in this region. These roots are supported firmly with the help of sticks, stones etc. so that they get a strong hold of the ground. Then these roots are gently nurtured and guided to the other side of the river. The whole process of building a web of roots from one side of the river to the other takes 15 to 20 years to get completed.

The most interesting fact about these bridges are they grow stronger with time – in contrast to the conventional bamboo bridges which worn out fast. These bridges are capable of handling around 500 people and last nearly 500 years. Age of most of the strongest bridges present here are 100 years or more. The most spectacular and famous one is the Umshiang double-decker bridge – on the river Umshiang. This bridge is about 180 years old.

Today’s prompt “survival” goes so well with this unique strategy of devising natural solutions to survival issues – that’s why I selected this topic for today.

For more information and Image source  – Click Here

Survive

The First Impression

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Let me tell you at first that I am not writing this for the purpose of job interview guide – NO. When I first saw today’s word prompt, I thought of discussing my experiences and views on the importance of the first impression we make to the people we interact (Note – I am not a pro!!). This is true for an interview panel, meeting a new colleague (classmate in college), a relative and even a stranger.

The way we react for the first time matters a lot. It takes just one-tenth of a second to judge someone and make a first impression. So these are the things I feel the most important to make a note –

1. Be yourself

This is what I have seen many of my friends not following and facing problems. Be it a job interview or any common meeting with any person, being yourself is the most necessary part. Don’t ever try to pretend something you are not. It’s your personality that tells what you are – no matter how big talks you do.

2. Self Confidence

One of the most necessary things in your life is confidence. No matter in what situation you are, this is a miracle booster. Always be confident from inside.

Well I am not glorifying myself but many of my friends always ask me – “How are you so confident and cool always?” My theory is simple – don’t take unnecessary stress and don’t let expectations burden you. Being worried is nothing wrong – everyone gets worried. But what you have to do is – if you are worried deep inside, take a deep breath and shake it off from your head. Showing low confidence always sends a wrong impression about you. But always remember – there is a thin line between confidence and over confidence – DO NOT cross this line.

3. Body Language Matters

Pretty tricky one right? But this is highly important. Small things – greeting with a friendly smile, shaking hands with a firm grip etc. matters a lot. A friendly, confident body language is a great advantage in building a fantastic first impression.

4. Listen

We all love to talk, right (well, at least most)? But the problem with most of us is, we don’t want to listen. This creates a hurdle in the path of building a proper communication and lack of communication leads to a poor impression. Do listen to the other person with attention, nod in appreciation – if you disagree, hold on and wait for your turn to speak. Being a good listener increases your patience and you can communicate on full understanding – not just forming an opinion of your own on half information.

5. Control Your Emotions

This is where we need to put a caution note. Normally we all get irritated when someone criticizes us. This is what exactly we need to avoid. Always remember you are not above mistakes. So if it’s a constructive criticism, listen. If you disagree, politely state that. Now if you ask me what to do with a person who just belittles you without reason? Well, just leave the place – no point arguing with an ignorant person and demeaning yourself.

These are some major things I find useful for our day to day communication and interaction with people. What else do you think are important? Do share in comments !!

Impression

And Then…. ( Part – I )

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“Hello Mr. Becker. Please take seat.”, said Dr Kaufmann in a cordial voice. “What happened?”. “It’s the same thing again doc.”, answered Mr. Becker, with a terror in his voice. Dr. Norman Kaufmann was now surprised. Despite his knowledge and 25 years of experience in handling number of weird and difficult cases of psychology, this was something which left him clueless. “This is really strange. Though I already know the issues, there’s no harm in telling your whole experience again. You know, there may be some minute details, which I may have missed.”.

Mr. Becker took a deep breath, cleared his throat and began his story, ” Doc, you know that I am facing a strange problem. I am seeing a dream – repeating everyday. This is what I saw yesterday. I am trying to express every detail I recall.

I felt at first I was floating adrift. The only thing I could see was the clear sky above. I was moving randomly without any destination, just like a lost ship. It seemed peaceful, relaxing. All of a sudden a series of waves seemed to emerge right beside me. They were huge and came down roaring towards me. I couldn’t understand what or why it was happening. Suddenly a voice instructed me out of nowhere, “Run Andrew run!!”. I started running wildly and voice continued to guide me. I didn’t recognize the voice but it seemed, very strangely, the voice knew me!! The instructions led me to a house. It was a two storied house, worn out due to it’s age and seemingly abandoned. I was about to enter through the gate – just then, a person came out of the house to take me inside. And just at that moment I heard a sound from behind. I turned around and saw a stranger with a gun in his hand, guarding the main gate. Just in front of the house, two graves were dug. The person who came out of the house, tried to save me but a blasting shot from the stranger’s gun took him out. I shrieked in fear and tried to run away, but something kept me still by force. I couldn’t move. Then I saw the man shooting at me. I saw a splash of blood coming out of my heart and everything went black.

I woke up in my be, panting hard. After I felt it was a dream, I went to sleep again. But no it was not!! The same sequences repeated again exactly in the same manner!! I was desperately trying to wake up thinking it as a dream, but all efforts were in vain. I was shot again and and everything went blank again. This time, I woke up in my bed again. I pinched myself to understand the I was not dreaming, and finally I was sure that I was not dreaming anymore. For the rest of the night, I just couldn’t sleep. Do something doc – I beg you.”.

The last sentence of Andrew sounded like a heart wrenching plea, begging to stay alive. Dr. Kaufmann was pretty anxious. He had been treating Andrew for a month, but it seemed that the dreams are getting more and more detailed. It was a queer case. This was not an usual case of stress, hallucinations, depression etc. It seemed more serious, intense, deep. It seemed that the roots of this case lay in Andrew’s personal life. He placed his comforting hand on Andrew’s shoulder. “Mr. Becker, don’t get upset. I am here with you. We will definitely solve it. But tell me one thing, I think the second part you said was new, right?”. Andrew nodded, “Yes, it is. I never had this experience of experiencing a dream twice. I am pretty scared now.”. “Don’t be scared. It is only a dream. What we want to find is why you are experiencing this. Stay calm and call me anytime you need. Okay?”

Andrew was somewhat relieved to get Dr. Kaufmann in his side. He told about this dream to his wife and she reacted as if Andrew was drunk. He visited numerous psychologists to get rid of this, but none actually did took the problem seriously until Dr. Kaufmann. So he got up, shook Dr. Kaufmann’s hand cordially and left for home.

After Andrew left, Dr. Kaufmann reclined back in his chair and closed his eyes. He knew no traditional way could solve this. He sensed there were some threads in his dream that needed to be picked up. But what were these threads and how to identify which are useful? He thought and thought and finally decided to call his most ingenious and most reliable school friend, Norby.

To be continued………

Adrift

Mystery Blogger Award

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First of all, let me thank Mark for nominating me for this great award. I apologize for replying pretty late, because I was pretty busy and also trying to complete my first attempt to write a thriller in my blog – which I finished yesterday.

Mark Jacobs is one of my favourite writers here and his stories displays his versatility in writing. Do visit Mark – you will be amazed.

Questions for me :

What does writing do you for you, as far as your day-to-day mood?

It gives me avenue to express myself, my thoughts, my imaginations. I believe it’s pretty necessary for an introvert person like myself, who is always somewhat alone, even if laughing with the crowd.

Do you believe that one does not need to read, in order to write?

No, I don’t believe it. Writing something is not very easy. Your thoughts can’t always be processed into words without reading a lot. Furthermore, your own outlook, your knowledge get more and more enhanced when you read more and more. Reading is essential to write something worthy.

Do you have a personal favourite blog post you have read in the past month?

Personally, persons I follow and also my followers – all have great blog content. But a few days back I read a poem of chaos-xd which I really felt to be “dangerously beautiful”.

Questions to my nominees :

  • Write four things which define you.
  • Have you ever experienced critical comment (justified or unjustified) on your posts or comments? How did you you deal with it?
  • Do you love reading? Name the favourite book and tell the reason.
  • If you are given an option to live the rest of the life in Mars – what is the one thing you will essentially take with you? (Of course not water, food etc. like that 🙂  )

My Nominees :

And all my followers, please consider yourselves to be nominated !!