The Grey Hair & Weird 25

It was a free and sunny Sunday. I planned to go on a trip by myself just the usual way I take myself around the Chicago downtown every nice weekend.

It was the middle of January if I remember right. The supposed Chicago Winter was particularly mild this year with a lot of warm winter days hoping in and out of our dreary winter months. This was one such day. I was glad that I didn’t have to layer and bundle up myself in lots of clothes. I picked  one from my favorite summer/fall outfits, found a matching pair of earring and bracelet and headed to the mirror for the beautification phase.

I am not really particular about having an ironed hair every day. It is not because I don’t like the clean look of it or that I have a gorgeous hair. I am just a bit too lazy for that kind of work everyday plus a slight fear of ruining the hair from heat. Today, I was a bit into the “I will iron my hair today!!” feel. I started parting my hair with Taylor Swift singing on my HTC helping me keep up the chirpy, bubbly Sunday ME. My Iron beeped at 360 deg announcing it was ready to make my hair gorgeous for the day. I kept planning on shop hopping, hitting the beach and even trying a free eye-makeup at Sephora on my way.I was done with one portion of my hair and headed to the next. I did a clean brush and sweep of my hair to get the next partition. My hair was shiny and I thought the Sun was particularly bright that day. But then, it happened…. I saw that one strand was not loosing it’s shine no matter whichever way I turned my head. It was silvery. I leaned towards the mirror and slowly parted that strand from the rest.

That moment I still remember as one of the most unexplainable in my life till then. I was astonished, felt a weird lurch in my tummy. I could see myself staring wide into the mirror, at my strand of hair…..which was white…white like the snow I had seen yesterday on the roads, white like the milk I just drank half an hour back and white like the ones I see on my parent’s and grandparent’s head..That kind of white hair which made me feel sad when I saw it on my brother’s head and made me realize he had become a big man…and at that moment, I realized we were growing together into our lives. My mind just immediately told me my birth year and all was clear. I was waiting for my 25th birthday this year. There was a whole wave of realizations that gushed into my head in that tiniest fraction of a second that seemed like forever. I felt like my mental mathematics had not been working much lately. The maths had taken on a dreamy and literature stance for years now. It never realized the importance of the increasing numbers in my life until then.

It dawned on me that am 25.

AAhh..who cares..just another number, am still young and lively, baby for my parents and a kiddo for my brother. So, who cares…I CARE…My life was taking it’s pace down the lane and what did I have to do about it…I wondered as I walked away from the mirror almost dressed the way I wanted to just few minutes back, only not as perfect.

I did not feel bothered exactly about age or as the old adage goes..”Never ask a woman her age” that mattered to me. If that bothered me, I wouldn’t be shouting out my age on the World Wide Web, but what mattered to me was blurry too..

I am in good academic position now, doing my Masters in a well-reputed college, earning well enough to save my student loan..All is well as far as I could perceive..But, something was missing.. I missed a little bit of fun in me, I missed that I-get-close-to-people-easily me, I missed that I-will-fly-one-day feel that had changed to I-need-to-fly-now-or-it’s-never feel. I missed that carefree feel about everything.

What I felt angry about was…Every single day I was small and dependent on my parents, I thought I will grow a wing of my own, stand on my own and then travel around and be like those big girls around me, having fun with friends and roaming around independently. But, as I grew up, I knew the wings, I knew they had grown and they were strong, I knew it could take me anywhere, but I also knew how to put constraints to those by myself to keep me working harder and walking on the lane that was to be walked on for stability. I had to keep myself stable without even having the choice to feel the fun of being wobbly.

When we were small, we could blame our issues on our parents or anyone around us, but as we grow up, all that happens are to be blamed on ourselves.

Every time I feel like taking off like a free bird, there is the reality lover in me, that stops me and makes me think practically. It makes me stay put…work more and never play harder. And the Jack inside me stays put.

“Don’t worry, YOU can do it have enough time..” I started hating that sentence instantly.




The Hope

There are times, I guess in everyone’s lives, when the person whom we loved the most or with whom we shared everything just moves away from our life and we miss them so terribly. He could have simply gone away to work, to study or just chose his way of life. There was never really a gap, but the schedule and the games of life just got in between and that is all.

Then, there comes a day when we get to meet him again and have a prospect of being with him for a long time like before. A huge anticipation and excitement creeps into us and plans on sharing about all that happened during those last years. But, then you suddenly realize that things are not that easy. Both of us might have changed. We still love each other and both of us excited to be together again but we wonder where was that ease gone. We realize that we need to work it from the beginning. We wonder whether it is just us or he feels the same too. A whole lot of confusing thoughts conflicting with each other builds up in our mind.

Then we think:

We are like two islands, Once a piece of land

and water gushed in between us

We still know to swim and close the distance

But the effort too much and the water too cold

Soon we will build a bridge to bridge the gap 

and all will be fine.


Island Trip

This trip we went was during my school days. The age during which making friends and mingling with N number of people never actually bothered us. Everyone around us would be open to our pranks as naughty and cute childish behaviour.

The trip was organised as a part of my father’s office recreational activities. All of his colleagues along with their family were present for the travel and hence the importance of the age of mingling. The kiddo team soon formed even before the journey started. At that time, the island or the name of the destination never mattered to us. There were other things like the food, fun and the long hours of games that mattered. But, still I remember my father mention the island’s name as Koduva Islands (which I happen to find out now from my father is KURUVA ISLAND) in WAYANAD, KERALA. The trip still remains to be one of the best in my mind. We boarded our bus around 4pm and reached wayanad around midnight. The bus journey was so much fun with a lot of games and food stop overs as usual. The night view I caught in between all the fun is still etched into my mind. The huge canvas of inky blue and grey night dotted with the twinkling stars, drawn onto it in a pitch black shade were the rows and rows of palms, coconut trees and hillocks. From far i could even catch tiny flickers of yellow lights that streamed out through the half closed doors and glass windows. The wind that blew across my face was so cool and fresh unlike that I was used to in my city life. The moon played hide and seek with us all along the journey. I still hold on to the view as one among those most treasured in my mind.

Upon reaching Wayanad, we stayed at a hotel for the night. In the morning we were so excited that we were finally going to see the island. All that I expected was a well kept island where to we would be taken by a boat or speed boat. I presumed that all of us would still play a few more games on the grass park and that would be it. But what i experienced that day was noooottthhing like that. The island was full of forest with a small trekking path that was simply cleared off the trees and bushes. From the mainland I could simply make out the starting point of the path, the remaining of which was hidden behind the huge trees and tall bushes. The water that surrounded the island was not a deep clear water river that could even occupy a tiny self row boat. It was full of stones, rocks and under current. Water was not as pristine and clear but one that came as a mud mix. I was truly thrilled. All of us walked in a line over the rocks slowly to reach the island. The dreadful news of people loosing lives in such streams, being common, many of the parents were really careful in letting the children loose anymore. But that was not going to lower our spirits. After all, our first friends are always our parents..hehe..

When everyone reached the island, we started walking the path that was again muddy from a drizzle that the forest had the last day. There were many funny uncles who simply tried to make a fake roar to scare others. The trip seemed to promise a lot more than simple chats from then on. Now that i think about it, that must have been my first adventure trip. As we walked, we entered denser forests where even the sun light seemed scarce at mid day. It was cool and green. There were very tall trees, little monkeys and many butterflies. Soon as I began to wonder whether the adventure was all over and only the walk was left until we reached some clear spot, I heard a little stream gurgle somewhere not far off. I though it must have been the same muddy stream we just crossed only now that it must be just behind one of those thick undergrowths. But to my utter surprise- literally open mouthed amazement- we were standing in front of a stream…no..river..pregnant with huge rocks and overflowing with pristine water. The water sprayed over us as we neared the rocks. It was the coolest drops of water that has ever touched my skin. Now that I was already happy enough another big news came by and that was that we could take a long bath in the river for about 2 hours. Hoop-dap-a-dap. I doubted that any of the parents would allow though but they were so cool about it. So all of us took a royal dip in the water that gushed all around us. The spot where we halted was actually surrounded by the river on all 3 sides. There were tall trees, large rocks, clear water, blue sky, cool breeze, freedom and what else would any man ever need. We splashed,dipped,floated, swam and laughed all along. As the 2 hours started ticking away to it’s last few minutes all of us were sad to stop but yet, we had to. The eyes red from water sprayed into them, hair wet and dripping, body  fresh ,soul happy all of us found their legs back on dry rocks. As we changed and was about to go, the smell of food, a tasty food for the voracious hunger that always finds it’s way to the tummy after a long river bath was ready. The exclusive kerala cuisine that consisted of kappa (tapioca),mulak (chilly and onion) and kattan kaapi (black coffee). We sat on the banks of the river and had as much as we could and proud to claim that we did it in a very environment friendly way. The food was eaten from a leaf and the cups of coffee were all collected and disposed on our way back in a waste bin.

Though all of us were sad to leave the beautiful and adventurous island, we had to. Soon, we were again in the bus. The return trip wasn’t as loud and fun since everyone was tired and the sadness of an ending trip had crept into all of us. Parents knew that the next day, they would again be in the same office with the routine works and the house chores to take care of. We children knew that we would again be loaded with the homeworks and projects though we had a little silver lining to it as we could still say this long Island Trip story to our friends and be heroes.

Grandpa glasses Revamped

I remember those black,thick rimmed glasses my grandpa used to wear every morning as he got his cup of tea and newspaper. He had this special spot on his bedside table for his glasses. Every night before he went to sleep, he religiously kept them at the same spot. Though, that particular specs was my grandpa’s possession, all elderly people used to wear the same thick,fully rimmed glasses then. Some were black,some others brown,silver,golden and so on but they were the grandpa glasses and never seen among the kids of my age.

Being the younger one in the family, I always had the freedom to play with any of my grandpa’s belongings no matter how carefully he kept them.Those glasses were my favourite. The legs of his glasses were lopsided from regular use and never remained together on the plane of his table. They served as my special prop during the teacher-acts. The lenses were too thick that it was always a blur for my then perfect kiddo-eyes.

Then came the time when my vision started fading away around the age of 13. My mother put on her first glasses at 13 too. So, I guess it was genetic. Anyway, she was sad I had to wear glasses.My 1st spec-shopping got me a half rimmed,ultra light specs. The thin rim around the lens was hardly visible. Those were the times when everyone preferred such light and unnoticeable glasses for kids,teens and even the middle-aged. There were grandpa glasses for the senior citizens and the light glasses for everyone else.The trend remained the same almost till a year ago.

The latest scenario is a bit different. The landscape of glasses that once had light, frame-less glasses the most has taken a turn. The light glasses have given way for the grandpa glasses, but completely revamped grandpa glasses. These glasses are now a fashion statement. They are a symbol of ‘cool’, the ‘nerd’ or anyone and everyone from all the age groups, a symbol of active life. I guess it has got a bit to do with the lens revolution too. The old,thick lenses have been upgraded to the present light lenses. The beautiful eyes that got hidden behind the blurry lenses are no more an issue.

A few days back, I was standing in a long queue where I noticed that 9/10 people who wore specs had the thick rimmed frames and I must admit, each one of them had a unique look. It has got a classic as well as fun element to it. It comes in all kind of colour combinations that it looks so fresh. Whether you wear them with a tight bun or a messy bun, with fringes or long locks, navy cut or messy boy hair, it elicit a unique aura.

This is something that keeps happening in fashion. Just like the cycle of life, it has got a recurrence cycle too. What was once modern becomes retro and retro becomes modern. The retro just lies under the bundle only to be dug out again.

Anyway, I am so drawn to this latest specs trend that I might soon get one for myself.