A door to the heavens

Early morning, as the cycle rickshaw made its way through the never-ending line of pedestrians to Swargadwar, Puri’s own sacred beach, it made me realise the first mistake of the day. A top angle point of view of holi isn’t all that great; the moment is pretty much earth-borne. And atop my rickshaw, I am clearly not a part of what is moving down there, busy baldheads incongruously embraced by colours, lepers at regular intervals and local beggars taking their day off to rub their untouchable shoulders with the babus from Bengal. They are all marching forward in great anticipation but cogently hiding what’s ahead around that distant corner. A sizable chunk of colour-splashed mankind, up and racing the sun.
Finally we leave the lot behind and the rickshaw puller gives out a sigh of relief as the long road shows mercy and starts winding down. It runs a straight line between the rows of shops and widens up before taking its final turn to the left. And there…the shops, the people and finally the road itself gives way to the eternal stretch ahead.

Life ceases, God begins.

Hundreds of dots silhouetted against the sun that glows sublimely from inside the gloomy blanket of an atmosphere thickened with prayers. They raise their hands to the sky, and move down to the sea, only to be swept fiercely back by the dark viscous waves. The colour of the holi disappears in the retrieving tides, revealing heads and limbs burdened and bowed down by guilt and confessions never made. The prayers convert into a roar loud enough to pierce the gloom overhead. The skies open up and the subjects of the Lord of the Lords bathe their sins off in the ephemeral radiance of their benevolent One.

There are other sights too, like that of our own Jack and Ross on honeymoon doing the Titanic with widespread arms, minus the ship but nevertheless greeting the sun as the local photographer captures the moment without fail. A little far away, an old woman, for a brief time forgets her date with the God and decides to have her time playing with the water.
I spend around thirty minutes allowing myself to be swept by the surreal surroundings. I make my way through the unvarying invocations and look around, only to realise I am only being looked at, from high up there.

On my way back, as I walk the road with the blessed ones, I don’t forget to take a look back. There are people still rushing in, leaving life behind and diving into the dark waters, dirty with the sins of the ones who dipped before. Colours and sins disappear, that’s what happens around that corner, all that crowd blend into one, to call out to Him in the same voice. The roar lowers down and I hear my rickshaw puller’s voice on top of it. He is waiting above the uphill wind. I wonder why he isn’t taking a dip. May be he’ll have a private date with the benevolent One later. May be for now, he’s too busy counting the money he gets carrying the reluctant sinners to Him.


A pin in my brain

One eventless day, after hours of sitting alone and checking and rechecking my Things To Do-list, I managed to find the existential grounds beneath the words like ‘urgent’ and ‘priority’. I realised that there’s nothing much to do for the day. For a prolonged second I even felt there’s nothing to do at all, any given day...if you actually think about it.

Then I switched my computer on, and was online in no time. There was finally something that was urgent. I needed to know if my condition was curable.

This has followed me since I can remember, the urge to go stationary. My body wants more and more of it. I could just sit there, for hours, watching TV, surfing net, pretending to read a book or even blissful, doing nothing. Sit and rot, Just do it.
Crazy things happen in between though, like my mind splits into two - one starts yelling to get up and do something, and the other reassures me that I am doing something, propositioning the vacuum and trying to make sense of all the nothingness there is. My body is the one who waits, for the spat to get over, for the conclusion.

Wikipedia-arguably the best thing that happened online since the explosion of pornography, describes my condition as ‘severe procrastination’. Apparently it's not such a healthy situation for a being to be in. But, most definitely, nobody has died because of it so far. As it turned out what was missing in the little pieces of information I already had was just the jargon. There isn’t quite an enlightening insight about it. Buddha must have had something different. Crudely put, it’s just the laziness, gone sour. Of course it might be the symptoms of chronic depression just around the corner.

Nonetheless, my online research (yep, it indeed is a lot of hard work) did succeed in finding souls who celebrate the condition. What's more, I even found out that some of the inspiring greats of times-past and present were the ones to define the lmitlessness of procrastination. Leonardo Da Vinci, it seems deserved a capital P in this regard. What do you guys think he was doing all those twenty years that took him to complete Mona lisa? Isaac Newton was out there under the tree when the apple fell on him for no other reason either. Mark Twain is supposed t ohave famously said, "Never put off for tomorrow what you can put off to the day after tomorrow". The other names include Isaac Asimov, Albert Einstein and guess who, Larry Page himself. I even managed to stumble upon something curiously funny called 'International Society for the Promotion of Procrastination' at http://math.usask.ca/~bickis/prox.html. You would also find some quotes inspiring you to do nothing at http://www.ucalgary.ca/~steel/procrastinus/quotes/quotes.html

Anyways, I do want to try and fight this highly respectable disorder. One needs to get over it, at least for a change. Its tough though, on a day when you would think that you have actually laid the ghost to rest and start walking the new road, you would sense the dark clouds hiding behind the buildings with no windows. Inside them, you would hear ,people crying, tired of over resting. Before you could tell yourself that you are not inside them, the doors shut and there’s darkness. The professors of void appear and sadness broods over.
One day I’ll chase them. When I’ll get used to the dark probably, when I could see things. Some thing to throw at them, or even hit them with- a remote control, or the bowl of potato wafers, even my computer’s mouse. I wait on, chewing on my moist sigh, for a silver bolt of lightning from between the dark clouds to strike me and light up my world.



I keep thinking.
What’s wrong with us?

I keep telling myself not to give much thought about it.
There’s people all around. I stand stranded in middle of nothingness.
My self has stopped reflecting. I take them all in. People. Time, Things and everything else. Succumbed to the womb of a black inkpot, I stand stranded.
Or is there anything around?

I keep looking.
At myself. In the mirrors and everywhere else.

I try to see where came from. I stare at myself, as the dark corridors of my house and those creaky wooden stairs build around me. I realise I am standing at one of the bulky windows of Vadakkeyara. Looking out to see if I could still see those sights. The rain. The neelanmaavu and beyond. Far off, near the veli, the souls laid to rest keep talking, about the crack in the walls. They say it’s all covered up but they can hear the sounds. The neelanmaavu broods over in front of me, waiting for its turn and watching us. I close my eyes, only to realize they were never open.

I keep trying to talk.
To the forgotten. To the omnipresent.

My mind is still beside the placid green water in the well and the ezhuthachanprani in it. Nothing moves. Everything is still and afloat. Everything. The do’s, never done, and the don’ts, repeated. Memories and dreams pretending to ignore the dead faces around. Thoughts and actions.
Suddenly,something fell on all of us with a big sound. A huge branch. On top, the kilichundan sways as if it has shed the weight of its lifetime. The ezhuthachanprani and everything else dissolves tracelessly and disappears.

I keep walking.
Past the well.

Past the moovandan that never grew to bear fruits. Past everything to the vadekkethodi, there, across the kalluvettiyakuzhi, I see her lying. “Just an afternoon nap”, says the vazha placed on top of her. “Out of habit, nothing else”. She’ll get up soon. Just in time for her tea and after that she’ll have a little bit of time to see what sukumaran is up to, before molu comes. “Had it been the older times, when you used to listen” says vazha hesitantly,“ she’d have had time to talk also, about what she had seen and heard”. I look at her, ignoring vazha’s insignificant conversation. I try telling her I need to go. She’s deep asleep. The mole on her stomach resemble the inert ezhuthachanprani. The stomach moves up and down slowly, in regular but late intervals. “The lesser you breathe, the longer you’ll live” says vazha. I get up.

I keep counting.
The number of maavus. Maybe they are counting us too. I look down the well. The ezhuthachanprani is still there. It is eating the leaves of the fallen branch. I pick a stone, covered with its own share of moss, waiting to rest under the bed of memories.

I lie back and start the television. And everything comes back at me again. The dos and the don’ts, the faces and the limbs, memories and dreams. But now, they’re all moving. They surround me. I close my eyes and the noise sinks the voice of the mapla shouting outside, asking in his voice coated with the dust of tobacco, “maavu kodukkando?”

I keep thinking.
What’s wrong with us?
I keep telling myself not to give much thought about it.


Joining the bandwidth wagon

Here’s blog number 60,000001, give or take a few tens of thousands.
I am doing this only after each and every cell of my body found necessary, a bit of virtuality, an existence between nowhere, contradicted only by the inane and abundant space around. I humbly claim my share of this ‘As you saw, the rest shall reap’ wonderland. Cyberspace, here I come.