Letters to self · Places · The Paths Travelled

On Bubbles and Bubble Breaking

There is a thing about the working world that puts you into a bubble. There is nothing bad about it (as long as it helps you pay the bills) but sometimes I find it scary. The closed eyed commitment to emails and to-do lists, training and workshops, it is like falling in love. More like ‘falling in work’. The routine is attractive. It pulls with high gravitational force. Maybe it is because there are protocols to follow and you know exactly what you are supposed to do. People have thought about it. People have worked on it for years. They have hand-over documents and millions of other documents that tell you how to solve a problem. And there are higher authorities above who have answers to your questions. Everything is not just on you. That is why it’s called an organization, a team, a unit.

I still find it scary because the bubble provides a distorted image of the reality. Or rather we construct our reality bubble and lock ourselves in it. According to an article:

When we do include everything that is not based on a direct observation of reality and experience of it, our perception becomes clouded with opinions, assumptions and various beliefs. By this process, we create our own reality bubble. We might be either entirely separated from other people, or we can share such bubbles with other individuals.

If that is the case, are we limiting our brain cells to perceive knowledge? What exactly is reality and what is our relationship with it? Are we totally unaware of it or do we choose to ignore it based on the reality we create? How important is it to ask these questions? How important is it to not ask at all?

I don’t have any answers. I am not even sure if I am asking the right questions or just fooling my mind, procrastinating until I dive into another financial aid essay and other hundred things on my list. But what I know is that the possibility of comfort makes me want to run away. It doesn’t mean I don’t want a comfortable sofa to sit, or a warm hand to hold. I am as materialistic as a human being can be. I am concerned about what happens when the bubble bursts. The possibility of reality tide drowning me in. What is the worst thing that can happen? I could either swim and adapt or construct another bubble to live in. I want to swim and adapt but that requires lots of  shark attacks or falling into a whirlpool and possible case of hypothermia and madness. How am I going to survive all that?

Only once have I experienced the realms of a battered bubble. The mayhem of the soul and emotions that came with it for two weeks of extreme detachment when I came out of the village I lived in and teams I worked with. The reality slapped me hard in the face as soon as I reached Kathmandu. Heavy bags and heavy heart, I entered with my room with excitement of seeing my colored walls. It was only short lived because my reality was real no longer and what was real was that I was months behind in applications and I had to start from scratch. There was no way around it. And that reality did not match with anyone around me. Hence, I felt extremely lonely. I felt like I had failed. But was there a reason to feel like that? I was not doing anything wrong. I had an awesome experience. I worked hard. I achieved my goals. And still, the two weeks of swimming alone made me feel no less than a wounded soldier in the lost battle. All of that because I did not have anyone to share my reality with. I was searching for ‘homophily’. A similar bubble.

Now that I have come to realize it, I am in some sort of bubble again. What is different now, is that I am aware of what is beyond it. And I am trying my best to compile resources to face the reality once it is broken. Because the bubble will break. And if it doesn’t, I will be the one breaking it. There is no other way around it. I am not sure if this will make me stronger or push me into another vortex. I am not sure if anyone is.

Advertisements
Odes to people I know and don't know · Stories · The Paths Travelled

H for Here

There was a strange gathering in the TV room last night: the silent meeting of four unconnected worlds, whispers of books and words oozing out of fingers in the keyboard followed by sleepy eyes, goodbyes and retiring to the bunk beds through winding corridors and wooden staircases.

I have been here for a month living in a desk beside a door opposite the fish tank with people with different background music who dance and sing in a mother tongue that sounds like a story from distant lands; is a story from distant lands. There is a weird home like feeling that is comfortable and warm. The definition of what we are, would be: Family that works together, lives together and eats together. Work is a never ending aspect of our relationship. We work hard, day and night. Paper cuts greet us unexpectedly, and phone calls are unceasing even in the alleyways of department stores where we buy our supplies.

Yesterday was the first day when there was very little work to do. The lights were out and there was no wifi; no shared drives working, no batteries and hence a “pen down” day. So we enjoyed the very little sun we had, ate ice-cream and cheesecakes that our bosses bought. Today, I am sitting in a chair that is not mine, trying to update the blog that I have been ignoring. I miss writing aimlessly sometimes. Here, everything has a goal. And after a long time, I can see my goals in full clarity  too. I can see my steps in sands that belong to the ocean. I feel free. However, I can also feel the cultural responsibilities pulling me in. The consistent debates whether I should give in to the customs that have been instilled on me from when I was a child or I should journey into the roads I have waited all my life  to walk in, keeps me thinking in bus rides. It makes me wish I had a different background music. However, the history of my music is too interesting to give up. It is what connects me to the world, writes my story in a comprehensible way when ‘I’ is sometimes too hard to explain.

The best thing about being here is the independence of connections. We are not obligated to stay forever; moving on is always the best option if you are scared of being caged in; you realize what impermanence is. And the worst thing about being here is that you sometimes tend to crave permanence and mom’s fish curry. What I have learned so far is the ease of human relationships. People, entropy of atoms, profession and nationality in a same room, without speaking can make you feel connected to the universe. 

Poems · Stories

Serendipity

Serendipity

I suppose that is how it happened.

The process of regrets and gratefulness followed.

So many things followed.

Nothing mattered because,

serendipity never chose to leave.

We found our way,

through

gullies of loneliness,

streets of emptiness and

bridges of hopelessness.

Looked into each other’s eyes

only to look away.

Glances mystified and conversations halted in the tips of our tongues,

like early onset of Alzheimer’s taking over for a moment.

The bus stop was a huge stadium surrounded by people,

hearts blazing as loud as beat box,

we evaded the bond that was right there.

In front of the café in the bend of the road, we loved walking on

we needed a catalyst to swing by

and it came when clouds decided to shower the bamboo trees.

The drizzling Blues and bright streetlights

reminded us of

The Smiths.

 

There we were on opposite lanes,

same song playing in our ears

never realizing that half our souls we were searching

for every second of every day

was just a second away.

Serendipity.

That’s how it happened.

We smiled and we knew love.

You were strong enough to pick up my pieces

I was strong enough not to break you apart

 

The carousel could not stop turning in the park

where roses were shades of faded pink

Not trying to sit still, the sands took the shape of a hurricane,

passing by us like a genie in the bottle,

granting the wishes we wished last night

Without realizing that

we were no longer going to be You and I today.

And then,

we became the candles of conscience drifting in the air.

mixtures of blood mist and shattered organs.

Serendipity.

That’s how it happened.

We died knowing that there’s a light that never goes out.

 

 

 

 

Poems · Volunteering Diaries

Doors and Windows

I am always close to doors and windows

In buses, I seek out the window seats

Or seats close to creaky damaged doors

I am always close to doors and windows

Like I am close to broken walls,

Skeletons of past,

Stories of old rusty people

White haired freckled bike riding scientists.

 

I am always close to doors and windows

Places where it is easier to slip off

Unnoticed and invisible

That is why my hands search for keys in the darkness

My legs seem to stand beside gates of bye byes in parties

I am always the first one

To leave the claustrophobic elevators

Where my heart drums down my rib-cage that holds it prisoner.

 

I am always close to doors and windows

Because it is easier to escape

It is easier to find a tunnel, a worm-hole, a book

Than to stay real, unmasked, vulnerable

Because it is easier to find ways to

Unhurt, un-love,

This ever scared prisoner heart.

 

I am always close to doors and windows.

Poems · Stories

home

Two thousand seventeen was the year I struggled with the definition of home, felt homeless, searched for home, got home and still kept searching for it.

Home was round spiral wooden staircase,

Smell of wet mud and cold breeze

Home was around small stupa

And gold plated, bowl bottomed, oil filled thread lights,

It was stony broken roads

You could play see saw with your legs on either side of stones

Home was where grandma made hot rotis

And I dipped them in milky white tea

 

Home was when my brother saved me each time from being a seeker

And I hit him with lego pieces just because

Home was papa coming home

After his leather jacket smell reached home first

Mommy’s lipstick stains on both side of cheeks when she went off to work

Home was simple things

When happiness had wings, we saw it in the sky full of kites

 

Home was holding baby brother

And counting tiny star like dots on his nose

Home was a cacophony of laughter and noise in a busy streets of Ason

Home was home when home needed no definition.

But still was.

Home.

 

Now,

Home is the top of the hill

It is breathing hard while walking up

The sound of heart beats as they sing how much your legs have strained

How much your head is free of thoughts

Home is an ocean of colorful eyes, uncooked friendships, hopeful souls

 

Home now is a universe

Trying to find a coherent chaos

Trying to make bridges

Home is not what home was.

Now.

But Home still is.

Somewhere.

Poems

The Perpetual Circle of Miseries

  1. The first ray of sunshine

makes you miss the warmth of his hands.

2. Never spent a winter outside home

And now you don’t know where home is anymore.

3.  You walk up until your lungs cry

but the smell of pig sty and familiar noise,

the fact that you’ve reached the destination

doesn’t make you happy.

4. You search for a familiarity in phone calls

and somehow everything is different.

5. Your friends have moved on

and their stories do not involve you

6. There’s hurt in your heart.

but pens refuse to jot it down.

7. Your skin is rusty, knees dry

mirrors are brutally honest

you tell yourself empty lies.

8. In evenings, you forget to see the sun set,

in mornings, you forget to hope,

afternoons are a blur.

9. Always scared of unfinished task

always on the run

always thinking

you forget your reasons

and rely on emotions instead.

10. At night you stare at the stars

they are the only things

you believe in now

because they fall and still shine in the dark.

11. You lose faith

you miss everything

that never really belonged to you.

12. The calendar

makes your heart beat faster.

13. Escaping is not an option

Perpetuality is your new master

You are a slave to life. Now.

A slave to life.