Travel Diary #000

My train berth is so so small and tiny, I am sure I’ll fall off if I move even a single small inch. Have these berths gotten thinner or have I been getting larger. Hehe… Both. But its neither actually.

When you live in a populous country like India you know that there is scarcity of resources, of space in a train and all those who can pay for a berth have to be adjusted. So you crawl into your berth and prepare yourself mentally for sleeping on a 2 feet wide plank suspended in the air by metal chains.

Hehe life is so much fun… 😀

… Hoping to be able to pay for a coupe sometime in life…

image

Do you evaluate people?

Its hard to say anything about life. I mean the more you know the more speechless you become… (At least I do…) There are so many things all so complete and involving in their own right, and yet they are all so different and incomplete without one another. But you can’t have it all. Because you won’t live that long. And in the end the enjoyment you derived from life would turn out be a function of both the big and the small things alike. I mean I feel a little disappointed about how eventually people close to you end up having such an impact on your life experience because I feel you always have a choice of leaving them and going to other people but then its not different, because not matter how many people you change, the are at some point going to create sh*t for you… because that is what we as people do.

Do tell me if I am immature in thinking this but I somehow always evaluate people before letting them be a part of my life and of late I haven’t been very approving of anyone. May be its personal, may be its because of past experiences. I mean… I don’t express anything out loud… I just observe and make decisions and the thought process is underground, but the truth is that as soon as I’ll kind of shift away from you as our lives change, I am clear I won’t make an effort to stay in touch if I feel you aren’t worth it. And I have seen other people do this. But I am not sure if they do it on the basis of things like what category of person he/she is, what sort of behavior they are likely to manifest in certain situations, what are their core motivations and insecurities and other such things. For a lot of people it is based on feeling not evaluation. You find time for the other person if you like them otherwise you leave it. Its obviously more natural and way less stressful. But, I can’t seem to let the control go to my feeling mind because that set up hasn’t worked for me on several occasions…

I do feel flustered often enough when I am not able to decide on the basis of how I have profiled someone and may be thats because my mental capacities are limited aand my profiling not evolved enough. But there isn’t an easy answer to which way to go is it?

Peeing and Slapping People In Train Compartments

Metro Railway systems are totally not a typical Indian thing. Our trains have always been big, giant, diesel guzzling, steel and iron behemoths. Our railway tracks – part time pooping grounds and our platforms – aways full of shit, spit and grit. Its dirty because there’s so many of us. We don’t have enough time or money or resources for the aesthetics of public systems. When we can pee in the tracks without an issue… we pee in the tracks. Because public toilets when not absolutely non-existent are either paid or live UTI cultures but oft times both.

abcTrain

So, the Delhi Metro is not the typical Indian thing I understand, but its still something we can love, right? I love it. The system is easily the best thing about Delhi! The fares are down right cheap and the services reasonably awesome. From a (lucky) upper middle class individual’s point of view the system offers a multitude of sociological exposures that could otherwise, definitely not have happened. But I sometimes wonder if thats really a great thing…

DelhiMetro

I recall, it was a sunday afternoon. There wasn’t a lot of people in the train. I sat in a corner fiddling with a pair of earphones that had got all tangled into a lump. A middle aged woman clad in a green and red sari sat with her three children on the other side. Her tiny body looked drained and over worked. She was obviously poor. Her heels had deep black furrows that curved on into the soles of her feet in disturbingly long lines. And she smelled of sweat; even from a distance. The little girl with her had fresh, greasy snot on parts of her face. She was probably sick with the flu, I thought and then cringed. The younger of the two boys with her was being very uneasy. He was obviously struggling with a strong urge to pee. When he could no longer hold it in no matter how hard he tried, he told her – it was an emergency and something had to be done. So what do these wonderful people decide? – It was time to pee – right in the seat. The lady stood up, holding the kid by the arm pits, to give support, and allowed his bladder some much needed relief. As the yellow puddle grew in size it reached the edges of the seat and slowly began to overflow, down onto the floor. The urine ran in thin lines all about that forsaken compartment, meandering right around unsuspecting passenger’s feet. I was so shocked, I deboarded at the next stop.

DisgustedMotherOfGod

Then this other day, I hadn’t had much sleep the night before so I was trying to sleep in the train. There was a crowd but that wasn’t deterring me. I haven’t always been good at sleeping in a seated position, but it was that part of my life when I was getting good at it. In fact I was doing considerably well that day before the women sitting on the seats facing mine began quarrelling pretty seriously. The smug faced, seemingly dull lady in her 60s and her strict and dissed-looking, middle-aged, dictator companion were failing to keep there volumes and well… crazy, angry rage under check. It was all under control… sort of but then the older woman started to stand up, shaking her head in disagreement. The other woman however was definitely not have any of it. She pulled her right down by the wrist and before you knew it she had SLAPPED the poor aunty, smack across the face! Thats when everything (except for the train of course) stopped short of everything else. On the other side of the compartment, people started peering at them, like meerkats! One head popping up behind the other. Then someone spoke.

Calm Down Bro

It was a simple-looking, young college girl but she looked really displeased.  She told the woman who had just delivered the blow about how she had no right to hit the poor lady like that. The old lady sat hunched, her head sunken to the level of her shoulders while this young girl reminded the “dictator” about respecting elder people. But it only got so far. The dictator snubbed her right there and told her to mind her own business, if she didn’t want a piece of that same slap herself. She told her to shut up because she didn’t know anything about how difficult it was to deal with this old lady who had gone all crazy in the head. So she told her to shut up once again. Again there was silence. The poor old girl was shaken, she had obviously been attacked and duelled to the ground. In trying to deal with the shock she rolled her eyes as she murmured something about her higher moral ground, to salvage some dignity.

 That Just Happened

Metro Rails – I Tell You!

I Refuse To Be Sad This Week

Choose Happiness

My mom was discussing office politics with a friend from her workplace over the phone when I started feeling sick again. I sat there listening, seeing her gloat over some hate worthy man’s misfortune. It was the kind of conversation that involves indirect suggestions and a careful selection of words to express balanced amounts of deriding amusement and what-goes-around-comes-around based snickering; peppered with a sumptuous seasoning of “subtle” displays of the most hollow kind of superiority. So I am not surprised that hearing her gave me this feeling that life had sick things to offer. It gave me this feeling of hopelessness; that life wasn’t worth it.

ObserveYourself

I thought I could change those eventualities that I felt were bound to happen. I could do this instead of that and it would change my being stuck in a hopeless dump of a life. But despite understanding that I had already started going down, in that tarry, cold pool of sadness that often finds me in it. Its… I think… a physical thing. Something… like the amygdala or the pituitary or something isn’t working quite right. The sad hormone gets released just a little to soon. I could see this chemical changing my mood and I started getting all frantic because I knew I was about to slip into that zone that would make this entire week reek of sulk. I finished my food and went inside to quickly change this feeling. I started doing something I like doing… I started writing everything down. I don’t want sadness anymore.

searching-for-happiness

😉

Its A Bad Day, Not A Bad Life…Trust Yourself And Let Go

 

I know I have been so stupid and sad lately. I’ve been cribbing an cribbing about stuff. My boyfriend, my mother, my brother. Life can’t be all that bad, come on. There’s obviously minuses to each of our stories and sometimes the minuses ARE grave. But despite that, despite the so many times when we are unhappy and sad, lost and alone, forgotten and bereft and our minds are soaked with the sadness of our miseries we continue to breathe and live. Even if it is withdrawn from the present, even if its all hopeless or sad we breathe and exist and despite everything, we still have ourselves to fix us.

As human beings we are complex. We are awfully crooked people that scheme relentlessly to meet strange ends. And there’s hardly a set design for how or why we reach sad, dark places in our lives. We always seem to have a great choice in terms of people to put blames on. We are after all summations of our pasts – people with minds optimised for manipulating and savouring particular realities. So, I doubt how much of the pain I felt came to me and how much of it I just acted out for the pleasure of it. Did I feel anything that was real?

Statue representing the portrait of Buddha in meditation. Copy space.

But, I know I love him still, even though he is no ones boyfriend anymore. Not mine not anybody else’s. I love him so whatever-ly because he was a beautiful, beautiful human. He was the most beautiful human I’ll ever know. And I know, I sound kiddish and naive here, because I am too young to pronounce that statement just yet, when I am 6 months ahead of turning 22. But I feel exactly like that. I know, how you’d be thinking, “Oh! She is emotional. 10 years down the line she’ll have a family and kids and it’ll all be a different story…”, I know that you think like that because that is what happens almost always and I am no special case. No, I am not. I will never be. It was him. He was the special one. I might have a family and kids in the next 10 years, it wouldn’t be a bad thing you know, sharing my life with another person and accomplishing my role in society… procreating and helping along the development of our race. And may be 10 years from now, all that’ll be left of him in my head, will be the foggy memory of a person that said honest, intelligent things. I think that’ll be sad. Just. That. In the right proportions. Not a molecule of anything here or there. It’ll be just that – sad to have known someone shining and not been able to match up to his exquisiteness. I accept it. It will be a sad sad thing.

But that is something in the past. He is gone and I am here. I have a life to manage and my own dreams and expectations to live up to. I can crib all I want, but that wont change the puddle of crap I am in. I feel lost and directionless, even uninspired at times and may be it is normal to feel that. To feel that all the good that was happening to me was a mirage, a golden dream that just wafted away like a cloud of smoke, like it had never ever even existed. It feels like that. It feels like the hope and happiness in my life, my comfort and joy, the sparkle and the mirth in me died and left a sad, grey shadow. That is true, but in this moment I am alive and breathing. I have chosen to heal.

lettingGo

We all live our lives in our own little life boats, journeying across a sea that gives us both pain and joy, both the magic of beautiful sunrises and the relentless wrath of furious storms. This sea is full of both dark, life-sucking whirlpools of sickness and nourishing, healing islands of comfort and pleasure. And on our journey to the other shore – something that is but a dream for all of us; we all row on, alone or with company to keep. We meet so many others and we tie our boats to other boats and we row some more and then some boats sink and some grow bigger and sometimes we just separate ways because our compasses tell us different things. I don’t know where my dinghy is going, I stopped looking at the compass long ago. But at the far horizon now, a storm has started to brew. Its some time before I get swept in, but only so long.

So not letting go of those memories is like holding on a a sewn up corpse; like staring at a barren reflection of complete falseness and in doing that letting the true stuff slip away. My love is undiminished, I pray to him more than I pray for him. Because he brought light into my life for no purpose other than his own love. I feel blessed for having known beauty and strength so true and real. And I have moaned and cried, but now its time to stop that. My heart is cleansed, and my dinghy faces a silent horizon, I must start rowing, I have to prepare for a storm.

 boat sea sky

Liebster Award Nomination

Hi,

This post is in response to a nomination for the “Liebster Award” sent to me by buczthebeginning on 2nd May 2014.

Liebster Award

First of all thank you buczthebeginning for the nomination, I am happy that you came to Practical Realities and read stuff that you eventually kinda… liked. Now, the answers to your questions (some of which I found a little umm… in need for honest replies but also  you know… kinda… purrsonal at the same time 😛 Gawd! Do I lack guts!):

#1How did you come up with the name you used for your blog?
I decided to call Practical Realities that because I sometimes think that a lot of the world (may be an exaggerated estimate) dopes on dreamy lies of happiness, success and satisfaction. Form the beginning of life most of us adapt to feeding on a constant stream of ideas, events and happenings that are inaccurate, incomplete renditions or even gross misrepresentations of the dynamics of existence. As we grow up our ideas of beauty, love, friendship, bravery, strength and courage etc.. are all processed, deformed and molded to fit into universal (and mostly incorrect) stereotypes, so that by the time we are all grown up, our judgment and perceptions are impaired, our ability to think deeply – dead and the compass that could direct us to some place of our own personal truth – rusty, broken and forgotten. I wanted Practical Realities to resound the element of the not-so-palatable truth. The truth that we are conniving, unscrupulous, jackasses that say something, do something else and think that we are saying and doing totally different stuff. That we lie to everyone, including ourselves and then cry about the outcomes of our own evil life plots. That – we are essentially crazy people. I wanted to be true and candid and talk about that sort of real stuff  on this blog. So I called it Practical Realities. But now that I think of it, it might just have been one of those days when I have my invisible, misanthropic-wicked-lady shades on. They significantly distorts the real picture in a negative way… so both I guess.

#2What types of things elevate your mood to a better place?
Chocolate, binge eating, mountains hikes, physical exercise, dogs, cuddles & hugs, awesome music, winning something hard to get and when nothing works (much needed) therapy.

#3What types of things lower your mood?
Failure, reminders of my past with bullies, strained relationships, rejection, being not-so-good-looking, being not-so-slim, being made fun of, saying stupid stuff, not being able to do stuff on my own (failure) especially when I am alone, not being able to understand other people’s perspectives (and then being make fun of or otherwise).

#4How long ago did you first discover you had a problem? Was it an event that happened?
I discovered very recently that I was developing BPD symptoms. My aunt is a psychologist. She brought up the issue because, my mom was concerned I has showing social withdrawal symptoms. They gave me some pretty long questionnaires to answer and then we saw a therapist. She said it was not conclusive that I had BPD but I had symptoms. So they advised me to make conscious efforts at normalizing things on the social front. That’s also supposed to be a test for discerning if everything is normal up there. Before this I had already gone into therapy for depression four years back. There was no specific event. I mostly got sucked into it quicksand-slowly. I didn’t take medication. There was a lot of therapy though.

#5How do you deal with things when your mentality and/or emotions are going in the wrong directions?
I directly go to sleep. If that is not possible, I cry as much as I want to, that relieves me, if that is also not possible, I hit the gym, that does wonders and I don’t know why it is not on the top of my list. If the negativity thing is just starting eating chocolate and loosing myself in a movie helps. If I am fully in it then writing sort of helps.

#6Are you currently seeing any type of doctor, therapist, social worker, etc? If so, for how long?
Actually, I just got off that part. It had the BPD warning class. I took two sessions, but I am constantly in touch with my psycho(logist) aunt.

#7Do you think reading others’ blogs help you?
Sure. It gives you a lot of creative ideas and you are able to live parts of other people’s lives. But some of the blogs that I follow are also pretty depressing. People write stuff like, “I hate myself – the end” (that was a post) and other stuff about how miserable they are making other people feel because they have BPD or Bi-Polar and stuff. That is just sad because there is too much of it, everywhere. Other blogs inspire me and yet others make me laugh. I love reading about new things people are doing, new places they are discovering and new perspectives.

#8Does certain types of music change your mood? How far can music take your mood?
At the gym music works wonders, but when the “Life Is Grim and Useless” attacks, that I have, are on full force that same music just sounds like tish-tish-tush-tush-kachaang-kachaang-blah-blah-blah. During workouts and walks it really makes me think everything is going to be all super right. In that area it works – super!

#9Other than writing, how else do you spend your free time?
Sleeping, reading, thinking, talking, walking, running, watching movies, listening to Osho discourses.

#10Do you have any regrets? (I know this can bring up some huge things, but I know I think about mine all the time)
Yes. 🙂

#11Lastly, Do you think recovery is possible?

Short Answer
May be.
If it is not – what the hell, whatever.
If it is – great!

The Liebster Rules

1. Link back to the blogger who nominated you.

2. Answer the 11 questions they gave you.

3. Nominate 11 other blogs with less than 200 followers.

4. Let those blogs know that you nominated them by leaving a comment on their blog.

5. Give your nominees 11 questions to answer.

My Questions:
  1. If you knew, the world’s (including you) going to stop existing in the next one hour, what would you do?
  2. What was your most intense dream?
  3. Most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
  4. Who do you hate most and why?
  5. The biggest lie you have ever said.
  6. What your favourite book and why?
  7. What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
  8. If you were to create a piece of art, what would the subject be?
  9. What’s the stupidest thing you’ve ever done?
  10. Where would you go in a time travel machine?
  11. What’s the absolute best vacation you can imagine?

Having a Mentally Retarded Brother

My mother is in the other room. Yelling at my brother and wailing at the same time. My heart right now feels heavy like a block of lead. I know its an everyday this crying of hers. Don’t get me wrong, she was never the crying kind… but since the last few years… that has changed. I remind myself, I am used to this but who can breath it easy when their mother’s bawling like a crazy woman. Tears rolling down both sides of her face, her loud voice trembling as she protests hopelessly for the hundredth time. No one.
Why is she bawling? Oh, umm… basically because my bro… he… is a mentally retarded kid. 17 years old, but the poor thing is still in 9th grade. Had he been normal, he’d have been in grad school by now. But, he is not. He is failing 9th grade.

Mother_and_child

*Sob* *Sob*

I can still hear the sound of my mother weeping in the other room… pleading with my brother, trying to convince him to write his homework in his homework diary.
We are basically really struggling with his schooling right now. It was never good. Because he is retarded you know… But off late the poor kid, my brother has spiralled out of control. And my mother suffers deeply because of this. the rest of us… we feel sad… but we have our own lives. We talk to him… listen to what he has to say… I try to be really nice to him. But my mother is Atlas. She bears the weight of his entire existence.
I guess the problem lies in the fact that he is not autistic. He is just retarded. We don’t have a lot of schools of mentally retarded people here. Autistic peeps… yeah! normal peeps… sure! but retarded guys… nopes.. sorries… ain’t nothing like that in the universe.

He is supposed to submit summer projects for all his subjects in like 3 days. This entire summer, I worked with him, spent hours on end and helped him write his text. But I could only manage 4 projects. Because I am imperfect. The present episode has tipped because of the ones left. I refused to help anymore. So it all fell upon my mother. She wouldn’t have had trouble with him had he been in the slightest mood to comply. But she is a motivated and demanding woman and he (my bro) has taken a mortal pledge to not respond to her.

So, my mother cries and sobs out of helplessness. The tears dry up on her cheeks as she asks herself why it’s all happening to her and how much better life could have been without him. My angelic brother. I remind myself, if ever I have one, I must not have a retarded child.