Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Life in Perspective...

"I have become my own version of an optimist. If I can't make it through one door, I'll go through another door - or I'll make a door. Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present."

This was a quote from Tagore and I try to live life with this as a guiding principle and the truth has been that this has generally held true through most of my life. There are times when the logic just isn’t there, rationality has to take a back seat and emotions seems to govern those moments…for me those moments used to be few and far between but lately there seems to be an extra deluge of emotional vs. rational…yesterday while I was putting K2 to sleep…he said “Mommy Song” and I sang to him my favorite song from the movie Anari Kisi Ke Muskurahaton Pe Ho Misar…he fell asleep in no time but I was left with the sentiments of that song –

Be someone's smile,
Take the pain away from someone,
Be there for someone with love in your heart,
This is what is called living.Based on the content of my pocket, I am a beggar,
But I am rich if you look at the content of my heart.
If I am gone tomorrow,
You will remember me in your tears,
The flower will tell the buds my stories – This is what I call living….

Today I watched this Bengali movie “Anuranan”.. Anuranan stands for resonance and yes Bengali is like a 5th language to me…I grew up in the South so my 1st language is English, 2nd Hindi, 3rd Tamil, 4th Oriya…so there were parts where I had to replay the dialogues to get the subtle nuances yet the movie left me strangely dissatisfied – not resonating a clear message…the actors were superb, yet there was something missing. However, it made me long for Calcutta…the graceful old city – with its maniac taxi drivers, the stately Victoria Memorial, the sprawling Howrah bridge, the buzzing Ballygunge market where I went to satiate my soul on second hand books and my stomach on kathi rolls; I missed watching the beautiful Bengali women in their beautiful saris and large bindis and the Babus in their pristine white Kurtas and Dhotis (I was an outsider getting a brief glimpse into someone else’s life). I missed the trips to the guy selling Mishti Doi near our house in Ballygunge, making the driver stop the car at an intersection for my phuchkas…the long trips to Tangda for the best Indian Chinese food ever…but most of all I miss that culture which was accepting…refined….educating.

This has been a week of relaxation and joy for me. Taking pleasure in the simple things – Eating Poori & Choley at the Chaat Place, an impromptu picnic with the boys, Roasting Fresh Corn, watching the beautiful fireworks in the Bay Area night sky, watching the awe on my son’s face as we took him through the car wash for the first time, his joy watching Toy Story 3 (his first movie in the theatres)…I couldn’t agree with Tagore more – Life remains when hope and joy remains…this is what I call living.

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