Ego and Impatience, the deadly combination.

Timeless learnings for the sensitive soul:
 The Ego and The Impatience, two deadly combinations in any relationship. 
1. Never succumb to anyone’s Ego and Dominance. It will make it hard for you to even recognise yourself. It will leave you bewildered, depressed and lonely. It will show you that side of you that you wish never existed. It will make you do and say utter rubbish. Might take years to get even with what follows next. (Still astonished and bewildered with myself) 
2. Handling Ego is through the head, Succumbing is because your heart is involved. 
3.If a person can’t forget your mistakes, can’t accept you with your flaws, can’t help make you become a better person, it’s time to make peace with yourself.
4.Love yourself unconditionally. No matter what others judge of you. If you know yourself what others think of you isn’t important. 👍🏻
5.Be patient, patient and more patient. ( this is what I am learning) Calmness makes things a lot easier. Impatience destroys.
6.Learn from your mistakes. Life is your best teacher. 
7. Never stop caring. Everyone has vices and flaws. It doesn’t justify to stop caring. 
8.Look for positivity even in the most negative situations. 
9. If you are feeling pushed away/ ignored at any point in your relationship, there is a certainly a reason why you are feeling that way. Don’t ignore it, but be prepared for the insecurity that follows, with insecurity comes impatience. And that’s enough to make you a complete Idiot! Brains go dysfunctional. 
10. Just as Ego and Impatience are destroyers, Forgiveness and lots of communication are the makers. 
It might look hard to get up and go back to being yourself, but put a little effort into yourself, is all it takes to be your normal, sane self again. 
Relationships will thrive if they are destined to be. It’s important for the other person ( parent/sibling/spouse/friend/child) to value you too. If they don’t it’s their bad luck because sensitive souls are very rare to find. 
All the best sensitive souls…. Sensitive people are rockstars. So be your sweet, bubbly and peppy selves always… this planet needs more people like you!!! 

Banaras Dreams- by Nidhi Paneri

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I was the only one included in the boy’s night. The boys who claimed to be wild wolves of Banaras, had open-heartedly made me a part of their pack. The other girls didn’t understand this special treatment, they felt that they had just about everything that I had.  The wolves loved the fact that I never fussed. They treated me like one of them, and I so loved that. They never stared at my cleavage or butts, they showed their love for me with their macho back pats.

We five girls chatted away on Meenu’s roof top. The evening Aarti chants could be heard loud and clear. Banaras evenings were epic. The pundits would practice their daily Aarti in chorus and later a grand show would be put up at the ghats. I was the listener always. The girls terribly needed someone to hear their shitty girl talk, so I was the one dragged into these girl gossip sessions. Fortunately my phone beeped.

Message: ‘At the ghats @ 9:00pm.’

I  jerked my hand in the air and snapped my fingers, finally I could be away from here. I always enjoyed male company. My intellect was far beyond the normal girl talk. “Got to gooooo,” I raised my hand for a high five. None of the girls responded. I shrugged, tied my hair into a tight bun, put on my black sweatshirt, climbed down the creeky wooden stairs much faster than any of the girls could, jumped over the last four steps and stormed out of Meenu’s home.

“You behave like a boy and I will break your legs,” mother had warned me. My mother’s treacherous firings often echoed within my head. But this was me. I couldn’t change. My father  thought I was too influenced by the evils of the western culture, my brother had strong predictions that I would land up all by myself, old and lonely, the only person who didn’t judge me was my childhood friend Raghu. He saw in me what nobody could.

As usual he was there, waiting on his antique Vespa, outside Meenu’s home. “I love you,” I pecked his cheek. “Joothi (Lair),” he replied. He told me that whenever I expressed my love for him. Raghu took me seriously on very rare occasions and that bothered me.

“Shwetu look Ramji kaka cut off his chotti (ponytail),” he remarked as we passed Ramji’s poster shop. Every home  in Banaras would have atleast one poster from Ramji Kaka’s shop. I was lost in my thoughts.

“Shwetu what are you doing?” Raghu asked, “Kya soch rahi hain? (What are you thinking?)”

“Nothing.” I replied.

I ruffled for the paper in my pocket. I was going to spill it all out tonight. He had to know how I felt for him. I took out the paper, and read it once again. I gripped it tight against the breeze.

Dear Raghu,

You are the one for me.

Love you forever,

Yours Shwetu.

It was just perfect. I had poured it all out in one single line. Raghu wasn’t much of a reader anyways.

The narrow streets were so full of people at this hour. Raghu dodged his Vespathrough the crowd, “Raghu, It’s best to walk down now, just park here,” I said pointing at Lala’s tea stall. Lala kaka would never mind a scooter parked near his stall. Infact no Banaras local would ever have any problems, they all had large hearts.

“What’s that?” he asked. He snatched the paper from my hand. “No! Raghu,” I shouted. My stomach felt funny. My heart thumped louder than ever. My mind felt foggy.  He was about to unfold the letter when his gaze drifted to a slender figure that approached towards us. She was tall, wore a lot of make up, and I didn’t quite like the way Raghu watched her. The two of them exchanged smiles and she turned to walk towards the ghat. Raghu grabbed my hand, stashed my letter into his pocket and pulled me along with him. The way he pulled me along with him didn’t feel good. The pull felt more like a push. My eyes were soggy much before we reached the ghat.

I looked up at Raghu, trying hard not to break into sobs. “Where are the boys?” I asked Raghu. I completely ignored the presence of the other lady. “Shwetu, I want you to meet Shaira,” he spoke with a radiant face. His happiness beemed on him. “Shaira? She’s a muslim?” I asked, astonished at how Raghu could have a muslim lady love. Shaira walked up closer to me. Close enough that I could see her red lipstick smudged on her teeth as she flashed her coy smile at me.

I wanted to push her into the pond right behind us. I pulled my fingers into a fist, gave a tearful look to Raghu. “Shwetu?” he spoke as softly as he could. He quite didn’t understand the look on my face.

There were children playing cricket on the side.  They stopped playing as their ball plopped into the pond water. “Oye Ranjeet, dekh ke khel ( Play carefully),” I shouted in anger. One of the boys shouted, “Shwetu didi don’t be so angry, you can bat today.”

I stepped forward, and clenched my fists tight.I looked up at the open skies. I was about to do something that was so out of my character. I breathed in deep and pushed Shaira into the pond. Raghu gaped at me for a second and rushed to help his lady love out. “Pagal ho gayi hain? (Have you gone crazy?)” Raghu shouted. Shaira’s eyes popped out, her drenched body shivered. “What kind of friends you have Raghu?” she snarled.

“What’s wrong with you Shwetambra?”

This was the first time he had called me by my real name. At that moment pushing Shaira into the pond water was wrong but it still felt so right.

“Read the damn letter Raghu, just read that bloody letter,” I said.

He took out the paper, tore it to pieces and threw it on my face. If heart breaks could be heard, mine would have been the loudest.

Everything was clear.  My brother was so right, I was going to land up all by myself,  old and lonely.  I turned away, ran to the boys and picked up the bat. It was my turn to bat now.

 

Friends Forever “Not”

 

best-friends

Friends Forever “Not”

You wrote that I read,

Believed what you said.

I made a difference to you just like butter would on bread.

You and I were to be friends “forever”,

I thought that was beautiful 

But you thought that was clever.

Little did I know that you would use me as a ladder.

To get to someone who was away from you,

but closer to me,

Oh! How stupid can I be?

I missed our  Sunday Strawberry Ice-creams,

And our night outs together,

I tried to tell you how much it hurt,

You didn’t care, for you had someone another.

You left me out all the while,

I missed to see you smile.

When I cried, you told the other,

“Leave her alone, just don’t bother,”

You thought I was being an emotional fool,

The truth is that I felt like the used tool.

The sad part is that you didn’t realise your mistake,

You believed it was no big deal, just a piece of cake.

Time has flown and I’ve grown,

One fine day you come knock at my door,

The other friend isn’t your friend anymore.

You want things to be as normal as can be,

But now all I have to say to thee,

Memories would’ve been etched even if it was us three,

Friendship needs no count,

All would’ve been well if you had heard me out.

Befriend a new pal,

Don’t use your old,

New ones are silver,

But old ones are worth gold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That Tub Of Chocolate Ice cream

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When you crave for a tub of rich chocolate ice cream, you can blame your hard wired ancestral genes for it. This is the truth about evolution. Our ancestors had access to limited sweets, the only one being ripe fruit. So on a lucky day when they’d spot a fig tree, they’d eat as much to their hearts content. This super strong craving gene is still in our DNA. So, even with an overstuffed fridge of goodies, you still want to wallop down the whole tub of creamy ice cream, you now know where is that craving wala feeling coming from!!!!

Blue

 

The streak of horror refused to leave my face, even after I splashed it with cold water. I wanted to comb the loose strands of hair that fell over my swollen eyes, but I didn’t carry a hair brush. My eyes were filled with wrath. An ocean wouldn’t be enough to extinguish it. I was hurt in every possible way a human can be. My throat was sore from all the screaming. My heart was numb. There was an agonising pain all over; the kind of pain that I couldn’t pin point to any doctor. My fairytale prince had turned out to be a demon.

I pulled out the fine jewellery that hung from my ears and neck. The sight of the blue sapphire engagement ring on my ring finger made me throw up. “Damn! Damn!, why did you have to be so stubby,” I cursed my slender long finger. The ring was stuck. My body was feeble, I couldn’t gather more strength to remove the sapphire. I stopped trying.

My tan hand bag lay open on the washroom counter of the hotel suite. I scurried through it for a sharp object. The dim lit washroom made it difficult to search through the items in it. I didn’t carry a blade, but a crochet hook would do the job. I would have to thrust the hook deep within my flesh. It would take a couple of sharp jabs, before I would see darkness forever. I slumped on the edge of the white bath tub, with my eyes shut tight. I wanted to prepare myself for death. I had heard elders say that people would see their childhood memories before they died, but images of the events that followed after Ravi’s phone call this afternoon flashed infront of me.

Ravi had put forth his last bachelor wish. He expressed his strong desire to meet me in the evening. “Come on Chitra, my Jaan, didn’t anyone tell you that it’s your duty to fulfil your to-be-husbands wishes,” he said in his usual flamboyant style. “Yes..errr…No,” I had said. He made me so nervous. The elders had drilled it into my head that it was inauspicious to see each other before the wedding. “Can’t you wait for one more day?” I asked. “Not even a minute.” he replied. “I am sending Manav, my cousin, he’ll bring you to me,”

“But…but…” He hung up. Ravi would never take a no for an answer. It was a tough job to leave a house full of relatives. The house was no less than a fortess. I had climbed down from the broken, rusted spiral staircase from behind the house.

“Where are we going?” I asked Manav.

“Ravi has booked the hotel suite room for two nights,” he said. His voice was grime.

“Manav, I will be skinned if my family gets to know about this.”

“Chitra, I am not sure if I am doing the right thing by taking you to him today, but for a person who wants his peace its best to do what Ravi orders.”

“I’d rather be with Mithoo today,” I said aloud. I was shocked with myself as I wasn’t used to speaking my thoughts aloud. “You have a pet?” he asked

“Yes, it’s a talking parakeet, been there with me for over twelve years now, he is old, so I had to leave him at the animal hospital,” I said. My eyes filled with tears. I missed Mithoo.

I had learnt to contain myself. An orphan child, especially a girl child, got to see the real world much earlier and closer than the lucky ones who had their mummas and papas. No one wanted to know anything about me through all my growing years. People showed interest only when I was ready to invest in them. Emotional investments didn’t count. It didn’t take me long to realise that my so called family of aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces spoke well with me only a couple of days before and after my salary day. The rest of the days they would dissect every word I’d say, every dress I’d wear and every morsel that I would cook. It’s only after Ravi’s marriage proposal things changed for the better. They called it “The Million Dollar” proposal.

No matter how things changed, my past had taught me valuable lessons of life. All of us live with our past. All of us allow it to shape our future. But some of us know how to shrug the past. I think that’s who I am. Despite the challenges I had faced, I had dared to dream of a better future.

Manav studied my sullen face. “You better take care of yourself, Ravi and his friends have been drinking all afternoon,” he warned.

“Alcohol?” I asked. My eyes widened.

“No water, “ he laughed. “I am sorry if I sound foolish, but Ravi had told me that he had never touched alcohol.”

“Really?” he gaped, “Then it must be the alcohol that comes running to him,”he said. There was anger in his voice.

We were engaged for six months, and I thought I knew him fairly well by now, but now I felt like I didn’t know him at all.

“Ravi is a charmer, he could charm a dead woman!” Manav remarked as he swivelled the car in the hotel porch.

“I shall wait here for you, Chitra,” Manav said. He bent his head low enough to see my face. He was genuinely concerned about my well-being.

“Thanks,” I replied. The well-built security guard opened the glass door for me. I walked slowly in to the foyer of the hotel. It was majestic. The sight of a beautiful floral arrangement underneath a large chandelier made me forget my purpose of being there.

“Ah! There you are, my Jaan!” Ravi said as he walked with his arms open towards me. He looked handsome in his red checkered shirt. His hair were gelled and he wore an expesive watch on his right wrist. He had a great collection of watches as opposed to the only one black leather watch that I owned.

“ We weren’t suppose to meet today, why don’t you understand?” I asked.

He turned himself to face me, here was love and need in his eyes. I lowered my eyes with shame. He looked at me as if he was ready to eat me up. “You are mine now, to-be- Mrs Kapoor,” he whispered. I could smell the alcohol. He had mint in his mouth, but the stench of liquor pissed me off. I turned around to leave, but he caught my hand. “I need you,” he begged. He went down on his knee, “How can you refuse a bachelor’s last wish?” he said aloud.

The next thing I knew was that I was squashed between the suite room’s wall and Ravi. He kissed me with passion. The kisses slowly turned to bites. I screamed in pain as his teeth gnawed into my skin. He bit me here and there, all over. His hands hovered around the edge of my kurta, but I stopped his hands from reaching there again and again. He was annoyed and hit my hand hard. I screamed again. Just then my phone rang. I tried hard to push Ravi off me, but he was heavy. I found it difficult to breathe. The moment I could catch my breath I shouted “Ravi stop, My phone is ringing.” He moved a bit. I stooped and elongated my hand to reach for my phone from the study desk. My limbs shivered, my fingers trembled as I answered the call. It was the vet.

“Yes Doctor Saheb,” I answered.

“I have some sad news for you,” he said with a heavy voice, “I am sorry Chitra, we will have to put Mithoo to sleep today.”

“Nooo…Nooo…Doctor Saheb, don’t do that,” I cried.

“Beta, he chokes on his food and his frail body isn’t responding to any drugs, it’s best to free him from his suffering,” he said, “ I can’t wait much, maybe an hour at the most.”

There was a lot of commotion and Doctor Saheb’s voice broke. I could barely hear a few mumbles.

Ravi tried to grab me again. But I flopped on the floor, my back brushed against the wall. I folded my hands and pleaded Ravi to let me go. “Ravi, my Mithoo is going to die,” I cried.

“Oh, come on, Chitra! It’s just a parakeet, I’ll buy you a new one tomorrow. It will be my honeymoon gift to you.”

Nothing can replace my Mithoo, the thoughts remained within me. My slience resonated in the posh hotel room. Everything looked blurred. I got up to move towards the door, when I felt a hard kick on my calf. I stumbled and fell.

“So your parakeet is more important to you than your fiancé, huh?” he growled. He pushed me away with his feet to clear his way.

I dragged myself to the washroom, and here I sit preparing myself to face death. Mithoo’s sweet voice echoed in my ears. We would sing Happy Birthday songs together. I looked up at my imaginery god to tell him about my final wish. I wished to see Mithoo for one last time. I heard Ravi talk over the phone. “Can’t you follow one simple order, just drop her off home, Manav!” he shouted. “I haven’t done anything to her, she wouldn’t let me!” he screamed before he banged the door shut. I heived a sigh of relief and got myself to look as normal as possible.

Manav was waiting in the porch. He jumped out of the car and ran to open my side of the car door. “Shit! Shit! What did he do to you?” he asked. I didn’t know what to say. “Let’s go to the doctor and then to the police.” “No! I want to meet Mithoo please, he is in the Safdarjung animal hospital, if you don’t mind,” I requested.

Doctor Saheb was outside with Mithoo in his arms. He gently put him in my arms. My beautiful Mithoo was defeathered. “Mithoo..Mithoo..” were the only words I could manage to speak. He was too weak to open his eyes. But I could tell that he heard me. He feebly tried to move his right wing. I kissed him, “I will always love you,” I whispered to him. I wept as Doctor Saheb took him inside.

“Let’s go home,” Manav said. “No! I’d rather die than go home, they will force me to get married to the demon tomorrow,” I said. I raised my finger to remove the blue sapphire ring again. ‘Let me help you,” Manav turned it around a bit and it slipped off.

“You are going home to pack your bags, you either die today or learn to live,” he said with a stern voice. “Mumbai wil teach you the value of life and freedom, what happened today will soon be your past, it might be tough, but it’s better than dying like a coward.” He held out the ring to me, “Throw it, right now.”

As always I decided to shrug my past. I threw the ring in the gutter. I watched it sink beneath the algae waters. ‘It’s a matter of time, everything disappears,’ Manav whispered. I nodded to agree with him. I turned around to open the car door, but before I could, Manav held it open for me.