Category Archives: Writing

The Train Journey

Last week on a train journey to Fontainebleau, which is around 60km from Paris, I was lucky enough to be seated by a window. I was travelling alone, due to which, I sought the companionship of music.

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It was beginning of the evening. Among the rows of 10 seats, punctuated by a passage to walk, dividing them into bays of 3 seats facing another 3 seats one side and 2 seats facing another 2 seats on the other, I opted for a seat on the 3 seat bay, by an east-facing window in the train moving southwards of Paris. When I sat, there were only very few people.  In the row, front of mine, sat a blonde woman, facing the same direction as me, on a seat tall enough that the only part of her visible to me was the top part of her head. Diagonally to my right, in the 2 seat bay and in the same row and direction as that of the blonde woman, was a couple who sat close to each other and were engrossed in the phone which I assume belonged to the guy, as he held it firmly while the girl was tapping randomly on the screen. Even though I was not keen on those who were sitting behind me, I did hear, in this French speaking nation, the voice of an English speaking young woman.   Then a group of 5 boys, who appeared to be south east Asians came and occupied the remaining seats in my row. While they occupied the 4 seats in the 2 seat bay, the remaining person occupied the right most seat facing the south direction, in the 3 seat bay.

Unperturbed by all this, I took out my kindle and resumed reading The immortals of Meluha which I had begun to read earlier that day, all the while listening to music. This is something I don’t usually do but I just gave it a go this time. Sometime later the sound of the train suppressed the music that I was listening to. So, I increased the volume a little so that I could hear music clear enough to make my mood flow with music and it worked. Unexpectedly, this didn’t distract my reading, rather it set up a perfect evening ride, amidst the dancing of golden hour light through city buildings, as the train left  Gare de Lyon.

I was immersed in reading and observed very little outside the window. The City never amuses me so much as what nature does. The city buildings passed by just like that. My eyes darted away from my Kindle for brief moment to look at the river Marne. After crossing the river my eyes scooted to and away from the window. As train reached outskirts of the city, houses seemed to go far away and greens seemed to approach the railway tracks. In the meantime, I finished a chapter and kept the kindle inside. The train was proceeding in a constant motion and I changed my playlist to one that included OST from movies.  My eyes were now completely glued to the windows, looking outside. I had travelled on this route quite a number of times in last few months. When I first travelled, it was a cloudy day and the river adjacent to tracks had flooded the nearby houses. I had learnt from news earlier that day that there was a flood in Paris but never thought that I would be a witness to it for the first time in my life. There was a calm aura after the floods and my friend, who was then travelling with me, expressed his concerns on how the floods had affected many lives while I had been trying hard to see beyond the calmness left behind by the flood. I couldn’t see what I wanted to see that time. Next time, when I travelled through this route it was snowing. Compared to the previous journey, this time, I enjoyed looking through the window and it was my first time travelling while it was snowing. The snowfall outside the window did put a smile on me whilst being accompanied by melodious songs from my playlist. The third time I travelled, everything seemed dry, as winter was ending and it was just before spring set foot.

This being my 4th time and that too during spring, I saw lush green trees, alongside the tracks, which were moving rapidly matching the rhythm of train’s motion, but in the opposite direction. Behind these trees, far away, were small towns which seemed to be situated in the valley. I could see only top portions of the houses, which were built in typical French style of architecture. Compared to the trees, these houses seemed to move back little slower. As I looked beyond these house, I observed green hills moving slower than the houses. The farthest I saw, were clouds which seemed rooted in their position.  The first thing I observed was, that the objects closer to train were moving fast while ones farthest were slow.  As I was engulfed in this moment, I was intrigued by a thought from one of my fellow blogger’s post. In his recent post, he explained about his train journey and the things he observed from it and at the end, he asked the readers to share their train journey experiences. At that point of time, I had passed it as just a suggestion. However, at this point of my train journey, I was driven to bring out a meaning from the experience I was enjoying.

The following is what I understood from my recent train journey…

Just like the train, my life is moving at a constant pace. Even though train is at constant speed, objects around the train seemed to move at different speeds. Trees along the track were fast, the town behind the trees were slower and hills under golden clouds on a beautiful warm evening were either very slow or seemed to be completely motionless. Looking back at my life, I realized these things are like people in one’s life. In my life, there were people who brought me smile and joy but left quickly, just like trees passing by. Towns which were slower but bigger enough to hold my sight were like those friends who were a part of my joys and adventures and I know that they will be there for a very long period just like the towns which grew bigger in time. And then, there is the hill, which is the ‘home’ to not just the trees but also to many other living things. They will be there even as I move far away from them. It could be concealed from sight at times when the trees alongside the tracks hide them completely, but moments later the hills will again be in line of sight just like my family is in mine. And it dawned upon me that, I look at the hills with high regards just like I look at my parents and brother along with Rocky and Tinkoo.

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How to beat Procrastination?

Procrastination

Definition: The action of delaying or postponing something.

Almost all the humans procrastinate and who knows, may be other animals too. I am a procrastinator too and it’s been there with me for a very long time. From the moment waking up from bed to going back to bed, I procrastinate a lot. And from past few months I even procrastinate about eating too (as at times I find cooking is time consuming) and I just skip cooking and eat cookies. This is happening for most of the times in recent days and I am trying to avoid as much as possible and to overcome including procrastination. Last Friday, I witnessed an event which taught me to overcome procrastination.

And the story begins…

Aix-en-Provence is the city where I live now. It is located near to coastal region in south of France. Its summer here and its hot. I was returning to home from the lab. Since it was weekend I thought of going to supermarket. It was around 5.45 pm when I reached home and it was still hot so I thought to go to supermarket sometime later. I was out of cookies and for weekend in home, cookies are must for me as it is my only companion to watch movies and TV shows. Cookies are the main reason to go to supermarket. Time was around 7.00 pm and the weather seemed mild and good enough. This provoked the sleep in me. The day being kind of hectic and tiresome  motivated my body to sleep. So once again I was procrastinating about sleeping. I have this one more thing which is, if I sleep in the evening it is very difficult for me to sleep in the night and I usually end up being a night owl. This bothered me a lot. I was tired and I was thinking whether to sleep or not.  And then there it flashed. I recalled that I need to go supermarket. Instead of worrying about whether to sleep or not, I took my bag and went to the supermarket and bought certain things including cookies too.

That’s it. That is how I found out the way to beat procrastination. On that particular day, I was procrastinating about two things. To go to supermarket being the former and to sleep being the latter. When I was procrastinating about the latter, I realised it’s time to be done with the former. This mantra seemed to be work out fine. I applied this later in the evening. I was watching a TV show. When I was procrastinating whether to watch next episode or not, I thought about my older procrastination which was about sleeping. Bang! Amidst the confusion of continuing the show or not, I thought of sleeping, went to bed, and had a peaceful sleep 🙂

PS: This doesn’t work all the time yet an effective method which works fine for me. And this worked now. The above post was in my drafts for a very long time. Above mentioned incidents was written when I was in Aix-en-Provence after which I finished my masters, went to India, had yummy foods, came back to France, got my master degree certificate and now I posted this as I was thinking what to post in my blog!

Short story: Red Umbrella

The bright smile seemed never fading. The message from last night is the reason. It had hints of her dreams coming true that was to happen by means of lock by a ring to finger. She checked her mobile for the quickest possible route and means of transportation to reach Trocadero gardens at Eiffel tower. She saw snowfall through the window which made her eyes and smile go wide. She adjusted her hair even though it seemed perfect for any normal person. She was normal until last night but not anymore. Her normalness was replaced by a crazy feeling for the guy who asked her to come to Eiffel tower with her favorite long boots, black coat, and with a red umbrella. It was what he remembered when he first laid eyes on her. She took her red umbrella as she walked out of her home. She imagined herself with him under the same red umbrella looking at the Eiffel tower from a distance. She arrived at the bus stop and checked the time. “Probably 50 minutes travel sparing 20 more minutes before 5” she said to herself.

Red umbrella
An evening in Paris

It’s his last job. He had his Glock 9mm semiautomatic next to the photo of the girl with red umbrella on which sun rays fell directly in his dark room. He leaned from darkness to light to look closer into the photo of the girl. His body leaned towards light, but his soul was still in dark struggling with conscience.  He had 73 kills in his career as professional killer. His last assignment was the girl in photo. First girl as target in his profession and final obstacle before getting into light. He was ready to quit his profession before accepting this job, but he couldn’t. Because the term to reach his light is to end light of his target. It is how his nature of job worked for people in that profession. His sharp look studied the smile of the girl and he asked for forgiveness in god. He determined to end the light for girl as he closed his eyes. A ray of light passed in front of him as he took his Glock and tucked in his belt as he stood to wear his jacket hanging from chair. He walked out of the empty room.

***

Only bottom half of the Eiffel tower was visible from Palais de Chaillot square on that snowy day. There were only few people who were witnessing this mesmerizing view of the Eiffel tower with snowfall. The girl with a red umbrella was one of them, standing next to the square which had the closest view of the Eiffel tower. she looked at her phone; “its 5!”, she said to herself. With a bright smile, filled with lots of curiosity and anxiety she looked all around the garden and saw only couples with umbrellas, or those taking pictures together. she was excited as she thought that she too will be soon under her red umbrella, with him.

In the corner of the square there was a café, and under the dimly lit light of the cafe, he stood holding his cup of cappuccino, in a hooded jacket. As he took a sip, it became cold as soon as it passed through his throat. His view of the girl’s face was blurred because of the snowfall, but her body movements clearly conveyed her anxiety as each second passed. He moved towards the steps on right side, towards Trocadero gardens. As he was observing her, a girl who was now looking at the Eiffel tower turned towards him. She saw his cold eyes and he saw her bright smile. people exclaimed “wow” looking at the magnificent Eiffel tower. Both turned to look at the tower.

On the snowy winter day as the sun set early in the evening, the glimmering lights from Eiffel started in the twilight background. Few people took out their cameras to take pictures while some were using their smartphones. Few people just observed it and these two were among them. Soon, glimmering lights stopped and turned into bright golden lights and there was a light beam from the top of the tower. He froze for a couple of moments as this moment ended. The guy took out his phone and sent a text. It said, “I see the light.” As he kept his phone in pocket he looked at her in anticipation for her to look back. Her phone buzzed, after which she came back to reality from the dreamy lights of the Eiffel tower. She read the message, and in shock, lifted her head. As she lifted her head, he took out his Glock and fired a bullet. Noise of the gun shot was suppressed amidst the hustle and bustle of the evening, and the Glock’s suppressor played along. There wasn’t much noise of the gunshot, but some people stared as the body started to collapse. Everyone nearby rushed to help, except her.  She turned away from the scene as instructed by her message. She was soon met with the kiss of her beloved, who had sent the message, “Hey! Look back!”. The light passed over killer’s eyes as he stared at the spectacular beam of light, radiating from the Eiffel tower.

Smile

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Witnessing a smile from someone you love the most is one of the most beautiful things. That pretty smile will make one forget the worries they have. A child’s smile will make his/her mother’s moment bright, just like a man’s smile widens when his family smiles.

Smile is a powerful tool to make people happy and sometimes to connect people. A girl’s smile towards a guy who likes her could be the beginning of a beautiful relation. A deal between businessmen could be made with just one whole hearted smile. In France, whenever I go to college or take small walks around my habitat, a smile from a stranger and the greeting ‘bonjour’, makes my moment bright. A smile or a good feeling in the early morning will make me feel positive throughout the day.

Sometimes, the smile in others as a result of my actions makes me happier. Knowing that I’m the reason for someone’s smile, is the best compliment I could ever get. Few people have already given me this compliment and I am in pursuit for more. One of my friends even told me that sometimes if he sees me, smile comes automatically to him (this could be perceived in another way, as I try to crack jokes, or sometimes my actions are so weird in a good way that it makes people smile. Until there is a smile on others’ face I don’t mind continuing this).

I want everyone to smile, have positive thoughts, and the people around them would end up doing the same. I know it’s impossible to see the world itself smiling, with happy people in it. It could only be possible in a dream and I assume everyone knows why.

Anyway, if you ever think you want a reason just to smile (although I wish there will be a reason of your own, but just in case if you miss it), meet Ganya, my little neighboring dude who just completed a year of entering to this world. When I had been to India during summer vacations, I met this cute little dude who lives just above our house. She became my friend very quickly than most of the little dudes of her age. And then started a little journey of playing (literally) together. Myself being a guy who doesn’t like to take selfies was eager to take a selfie whenever she stays still and I had a phone in my hand. I often took pictures of her using phone. They were all just candid pictures. Once, I took my camera out to take some more photos, and in front of me was this little dude in her walker with one of the most mesmerizing smile I have seen. As I started taking pictures, her smile became wider. It is one of happiest smiles I have ever seen. The smile is simply pure and innocent in its nature. I consider the above picture which has this awesome smile, as one of the best pictures I’ve ever made.

img_2893I hope the smile from my little dude puts a smile on you too. Keep smiling and have a good day!

Time Changes

Disclaimer: The following article was written long ago where I wanted to express all my expressions whether it was sarcasm or frustration through writing. And the following article is one such where I wrote based on facts which I think was correct and is purely in my point of view and things I have seen.

What is the first thing in universe? No idea will be the common man’s answer and some intelligent/geeks may say Big Bang, God particle, blah… blah… But if we think again, even before big bang there existed something and I like to say that something is, actually it is not a thing but still for our sake let’s consider it as a thing and the thing is actually Time. No one knows how many billion years have passed till date, and even before date existed!

Coming to start of time, wait, I didn’t say when it started, so let’s have some approximate guess. Let it be… Who cares? Time started after big bang and so we are now somewhere around 13.7billion years. Okay?
Now, as time changed everything around it changed. Galaxies formed, stars formed, planets and their satellites, comets and many more unknown objects.

Zooming into the Milky Way and then into our solar system and then earth, we see it changing rapidly. At first it was just a ball of huge hot rocks forming another huge rock and then there started first organic thing. I forgot the name by the way. That organic thing formed into something and then from that something there was another thing. For more information google it. And then there came life and after millions of years, there were lot of lives.

On July 15th, 1992 around 10 in morning even I got life. First thing I saw is… I don’t know. But the first person to see me is a doctor as usual. So many strange things happened around me as time passed. It’s strange because I didn’t know anything at that time and I don’t remember anything from that time. Years passed and I am here today with this time thing, saying, that as time changes everything changes, including me as said by people around me. But believe me my friends, your change is the cause for change in me. Initially, I wanted all the things and peoples to be same around me. If that is what should have happened, one may say I’m !@#$%&!. Well partially true, but as wholly utter false. Everyone has their own priorities and when they mind their own, no one says a word. If I mind my own priorities everyone goes off and say, I have changed. It’s because of this I have changed, which is actually the result of change in others or they being themselves and I’m trying to do same. Time changed people and I changed when I had the time.

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Time Machine

Final verdict: As Time changes everything and everyone changes.

Sorry to say, my above statement is a lie. Just think, yesterday at this time, the time was same right? (Read it again if you don’t understand) And yesterday, I may have been at some place doing something and now at same time I’m here doing another thing. So it is me and my things are the changes and not the time.
Another best example to say that time never changes is duration. When the seconds hand move from one point to its following point in a clock, it takes just a second to do so. And same amount of duration is required when it does again which means, time is constant all the time and it’s us who see change as we change.

Just like that

19-12-2013

Sometime in the night, while I was on bed…

Its dark and its silent. The light from the small gap in door is illuminating on my book rack and clock on the wall which is perpendicular to my bed facing opposite to me. Since the light is coming after diffraction, it is not so bright. I can see where the clock is, but not what time it is. All I could sense in the room is tik-tok sound of the clock and my breathing. Lying on bed, I’m counting the seconds in my mind along with tik-tok sound. The clock sound is so varying; I was trying to match the sound with a song. But my mind is clear and is actually blank so I can’t think of any song right now. All I could do now is counting seconds along with the sound and bringing this into words. Words, the effective weapon to reach person has ability to make strong influence. Sometimes the words could be a reason for love and also war. A word can create and also can destroy. I’m happy I just got hold of these words. Going through my mind, expressing my thoughts these are the beautiful things I’m proud of owning. In my solitude world, these words are the basic unit for expressing my feelings and it also my virtual companion. A companion through my happy and sad moments. When I’m happy I write, when sad I write and when I don’t have anything to do, I write. This is the reason for birth of this writing. I’m writing, I’ll write and I’ll be writing to express myself and to reach the world, to the world of the good, the bad and the badass people among to whom this may reach. Often I thought if I could reach people through my writing and I doubted myself. But some writings later I realized that I could reach people and the reason some of my friends ask, “did you write anything later?” just boosts the confidence of writer part in me. Overall, I consider writing as a medium to express me, being me, from me. Some years down the line I hope I’ll find / make another way to express me and that will be…(I’m working on it)

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08-01-2016

I think I worked on the other way to express.

The Unsung Heroes

Their name is the soldiers

Having friends next to their shoulders

Marching like big boulders

They strike enemies boundary holders.


Far from home, far from family

They live remembering just the memory

Fighting not for the sake of money

They live in the company of harmony.


Wearing the heavy armours

Their life is of few colors

Marking their life with bold markers

They are the unsung heroes.

 

a still from 'Saving Private Ryan'
Image source: ‘Saving Private Ryan’ movie

Dedicated to all the soldiers…