....and all that jazZ

Saturday, September 27, 2008


I have heard Ramesh Sir mention the word many times in class. I have always construed it as "practice" and put it away, smiling and saying "Haan Sir, Practice Karenge."
It is only today that I think I grasp the full meaning of it.

I have been emotional at many different music and dance performances. Tonight, I think was different. Watching your Guru dance is a sense of pride and joy by association. Then of course the performance itself being spectacular, it was overwhelming. What I felt there was sheer awe.

Sadhana - Not just muscle memory, not just stamina, not just control over the mind - adding soul to it. Sadhana, where you bring the body, mind and most importantly the soul together. The point, where you feel no stiffness in the leg, where the mind is not directing your body ( now torso, add the eye, dont forget the neck ), where there is only the Swara, the Laya, and the Soul. Sadhana - Pursuit of Perfection.

P.S: I will miss Sir and Apa a lot. Over the last year, I have seen more of them than I have seen of a lot of my good friends. I have learned a lot of things from them (some directly, a lot indirectly). Today I understood what Sir has been striving to drive into my thick head for the longest time. The most important lesson of all given the day before they leave back for India. Thank you.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

So you think you know me ?

Think again...........

1. What is your occupation right now? Engineer.(Analog circuit design to be precise)
2. What color are your socks? No Socks
3. What are you listening to right now? Sindbad the Sailor :)
4. What was the last thing that you ate? Veg Sandwich and Lemonade.
5. Can you drive a stick shift? Technically yes, actually no.
6. Last person you spoke to on the phone? CoolBoy
7. Do you like the person who sent this to you? :) Yesssssss !
8. How old are you today? 29
9. What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? Soccer
10. What is your favorite drink? A glass of your finest wine. ;-)
11. Have you ever dyed your hair? No. Never want to.
12. Favorite food? Anything my Mommy makes.
13. What is the last movie you watched? Welcome.
14. Favorite day of the year? 12th May. I am needy. Is that a crime now ?
15. How do you vent anger? Go for a long walk, stare at the ocean.
16. What was your favorite toy as a child? My roller skates.
17. What is your favorite season? Monsoon. I make do with Spring in California.:)
18. Cherries or Blueberries? Cherries, but not those fake sugary ones.. those i hate as much as I love the real ones.
19. Do you want your friends to e-mail you back? Sure, why not?
20. Who is the most likely to respond? Sam and/or Shwets.
21. Who is least likely to respond? The rest of the world.
22. Living arrangements? Okay types.
23. When was the last time you cried? :(
24. What is on the floor of your closet? :) Its clean :) !
25. Who is the friend you have had the longest that you are> sending to? ??? N/A
26. What did you do last night? Caught up with Junzie.
27. What are you most afraid of being lost? Perspective.
28. Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers? None - I don't eat hamburgers.
29. Favorite dog breed(s): Cocker Spaniel.
30. Favorite day of the week? Friday
31. How many states have you lived in? 4
32. Diamonds or pearls? Diamonds.
33. What is your favorite flower? Roses.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

All out of luck ?

".....What do you do when you are all out of luck..?" I concluded. It was a rhetoric. I wasn't expecting an answer.

"What do I do when I’m out of luck ? I slip in a Metallica CD full blast and eat thayir sadham with arisi appalam and mavadu." he replied.

Thank God for friends !


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Weekend Musings

She lives by herself. She turns her TV to fill up the silences. She sometimes makes an elaborate meal for a party of one, lights up the candle, pours herself a glass of wine, takes the plate to the couch. A book in one hand and music for company, she eats alone.

I spent the better part of this weekend, curled up, labouring over The Agony and the Ecstasy - Irving Stone. I felt every frustration and rejoiced at every little victory. Finished it feeling sheer envy for a man who had so much passion and so much talent and so much self belief. Michelangelo.

2006 Baron Herzog Chardonnay (Central Coast) makes an excellent companion for a warm day, 2 miles in from the shore of Del Mar Beach.

Radio is my only resource for fresh music these days. I don't spend much time anymore online scrounging for music I like. When I cant find music, it finds me :)! No, seriously. A kind friend made me a copy of the music he was playing at his place Friday night !
¿Dónde Jugarán las Niñas? - Molotov.

Also spent some time reading and pondering over the Makeover at Wall Street!. I have decided that if I ever go back to school, it MUST be to study economics. It is the most intriguing of all Sciences.

What next? She wonders. The choices were made long ago. Were she to live through them again, would she have it any other way?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Home and Heart

I dragged my heart to faraway places,
However, Home it refused to leave.

Half way around the world,the night ushers in pin drop silences and silvery lights from the sky. I turn the volume louder to fill the void that I chose over the familiar sounds and smells. As I gaze across the ocean, I search for one friendly wave that has crossed the seven seas to bring tidings from afar. The water that kiss my feet bring love and memories from the other side of the world. The warm resplendent setting sun of the west, the glorious morning of the east.

Must I, the vagabond be?
I don't want to be free.
I yearn the bondage of the soil,
I want to plant my feet,
I want to be the humble tree.

Home?... What of it?
Isn't home where the heart is?
Sometimes I follow my heart.
Sometimes it follows me.
Home?.. Where is it?

I found my heart in a faraway land,
"Welcome Home."It said to me.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The believer

Two short weeks later, a full week drags on. It should have been Thursday today, but its only Wednesday. Amma said she was visiting the Lalbaug ka Raja tomorrow. The famed Ganesha of Mumbai. The "mannat" ganpati. Lakhs of people queue out waiting for a glimpse. At the moment of the glimpse they bow in humility before the Power that Is. They quickly whisper into their own souls their deepest and most ardent desires, in hope that the soul would carry their voice into the heart of the universe, which in turn, hopefully, with perhaps some coaxing from The Remover of all Obstacles, would conspire to make the wish come true. Having poured their heart and sorrows to perhaps the only One who cares, and can do anything about it, they take His leave to attack their lives or often times with just about enough courage to face it, in the staunch belief that His Force is with them at every step.

I have never had to pray for myself. My Grandmother always did that for me. She had a better rapport with Him, you see. I, on the other hand, always hid in her pallu, stood timidly, a step behind praying that what ever she was praying for came true. She still does that for me.

My equation with Ganesha was built by bonding over our favourite sweet - the steamed modaks that are made especially for the two of us every year on Ganesh Chaturthi. Siddhivinyak helping me through badly prepared for engineering exams in return for as little as a coconut ensured my lifelong commitment to a friend who is always there and asks for nothing in return. It also helps that Elephant is my favouritest animal in the world - ever !

Patti, many years ago taught me a Shri Ganesha Stotram. I have said it many a times. More often in times of distress and need than in moments of joy or gratitude. Mostly when I needed the strength to make the right decision, asking for exactly that. The strength to make the right decision.

So when amma said she was going to see the Raja, a lot of things came rushing to the mind. Especially the picture of my Tantra T shirt that says
"Lord Ganesha
50% Animal
50% Human
100% Cute"

I told Amma "Say Hi from me !"

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Best of the days

It is not the best of days,
It is sunny and warm
The wayward clouds have lost their way

The dew has no time to pause
As the dawn reluctantly lingers,
and my words wither without a cause

On the best of days,
They rejoice and dance to the tune of the wind,
They revel in the dark spell of the clouds,
Joy they don't have to to feign,
On the best of the days it rains.

On days such as that,
I sit by the window and pen
my thoughts, my musings, my wishes
My words forget about why and when.

The pitter and the patter
wash clean the dusty panes.
I can see as clearly as the moving finger feels,
On the best of the days it rains.

It is not that day today.
It is sunny and warm.
The wayward clouds have lost their way !

On the best of the days it rains.

The Truth

There is one truth in my world. Absolute and complete. As sure as day and night. It is Music. Right from the one that silences spell, through the ones that wind and trees and all things that do not "speak" sing, to the one that we make.
Step by step as I move through life's motions, thus note by note the song unfolds. A rhapsody of my creation. I move through chaos and order to a rhythm. Through Melody and cacophony to the beat of my heart! The joys and sorrows extempore.
I look for no answers. I ask no questions. I simply sing my song. That is my purpose. It will reverberate and echo through the universes and fade away as a whisper. My goal is the state of perfect harmony, where all notes meet and many voices chime and Voila! its a symphony !

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Race !

Talk about inspiration. I outdid my best time on the treadmill today. 5Km in 29 minutes and about 22 seconds. I beat my personal best by 20 seconds !!!! Before you laugh, Phelps beat Cavic to create history (in more than one way) by 1/100th of a second.

What I love about it is that it was totally unintentional. I got on the tread mill just wanting to sweat my thoughts out and found myself in better shape than I expected. Pleasantly surprised and working on the train of thought that how I never push myself, I decided to race time. Nudged my will a little and egged my ego on. The faster that I run , the faster the race would be over! The workout would be done faster and I would have so many more minutes to enjoy something else that little more. My winnings were a whole 20 seconds. I am 20 seconds richer !

Last weekend, cool boy and I climbed Half Dome. Another race against time. Woke up at 4:30 am so that we could be at the trail head at day break. Given my ill-disposition to heat, if we didn't make it to the top before the sun made it to right above our heads, we would have either not made it to the top or been miserable as hell if we lost to the speed of the rising sun. We did make it to the top before noon. Every now and then coolboy would stop to take pictures, and I would say.. look at the sun.. Hurry !!! We can take pictures on our way back.. I am so glad coolboy didn't listen. And what little of the scenery was there we enjoyed while the trees provided shade and the sun rays were still thawing the barren landscape. We still made it up in very good time.. an hour ahead of our own schedule. But who were we racing? Nature and Time are mighty opponents. It took us much longer to come down. And the Sun had his vengeance !

That whole damn trip was a race.. against time. How long do you think its going to take us to drive? 8 hours.. maybe we should leave early! It took them 10.5 !! We must be able to do slightly better !! We must get enough sleep. We cant take long dinner breaks. Its getting dark. Time to do this.. Time to do that and just like that the whole weekend gone.. and we get back home in time for dinner.. a good nights sleep perhaps.. and then work day begins.. Race against deadlines.. cant be that hard.. this shouldn't take that long.. how soon can that be done.. time to market.. time to sell.. time to buy.. and just like that the week is gone.

And just like that life goes on. And time we have is never enough ! Today I wrenched 20 seconds from my workout run. I spent them staring into empty space sitting in my car after I reached home and parked.

It was time for me to space out and breathe !

Drive up to Yosemite: 8.5 Hours
Half Dome Hike: 10 hours
Drive back home: 8 Hours
Spending 26 uninterrupted hours with coolboy without fighting even once : Priceless!

Somethings money just cannot buy. For the other things, I don't have time !