Wednesday, December 31, 2008
"Something out there stares at you. Its tiny little eyes gleaming and moving on the water's surface.
Darkness is rewarding. So is silence. You are all alone in that black - just the dark pine and mirror waters, also draped in night, for company.
And suddenly all music and clamour is lost in that silent blinking lullaby that the stars sing. All light and tones of the day are gone and you bask in that grey-ness, nothing to expose you - nothing to make you stand out from blending with the trees and mounts. The grace of the night.
The water ripples. Now the water is disturbed. Could there be something out there? It's long tentacles stirring the water and watching you through that minute swaying lights, rippling with the clear inky lake."
Sunday, December 21, 2008
I haven't changed a bit. Nothing had changed a bit. The tea is still hot and the steam still dance from its rim. Here time stood still while I went many ways. But then coming back here I only realise its me who missed it all. The mountains never missed me. The shuddering grasses in the wind kept on, moving to the wind's orchestration.
I am grateful nothing has changed.
A wist of cloud escaping from a rift in the mountains. A cold shivering pine bouncing in the belly of the cloud's passing.
My tutors at D&A talks about bringing back the captital to our dear little Christchurch. It better happen fast because otherwise I too will move to Wellington sometime, given a choice, though Christchurch is starting to grow into my skin by now.
People don't have choices. Things just happen.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
My room is such a warm haven. It rained a little I think during the whole evening that I stayed in my room and watched 'Saboteur' and The Mummy 3. The first one was terrific. The second watchable. I rather like it more than the first two installments of Mummy.
The kitchen is being occupied by Jonny, the Korean flatmate, with another of his friend, from school as I learnt, making dinner. I heated water to make myself some easy black coffee.
Outside my door sat the speckled fat cat who is always trying to sneak into the room. My landlord tells me he/she is a big nuisance. I make sure that he/she does not follow me inside.
With the steaming hot water in my right hand, I step back into my room, being greeted by warm room air (heated by the room heater) and the song 'Haal kaisa hai janaab ka, kya khayal he aapka?...' that I left playing on my laptop before I went out.
Such a warm four wall binding my little world.
Sometimes I feel like Rusty from 'Room on the Roof' written by Ruskin Bond, whose first adventure out of home concerned a little room on a roof with crackpots and wierdos as neighbours. I myself am surrounded by wierd people, for instance, Johnny, the Korean guy who was after my laptop for one whole week because he wanted to watch Dragonballz that I had, for some reason, in my laptop. I don't like DBZ btw. Then there's Raj, the impulsive fellow, always ready to try something new. Who runs the mess department as much as he and i are concerned. Then there's a Japanese girl, whose name just left my memory, who was introduced to me searching for her black socks that she must have dropped while she took out her laundry, and looking devastated as though she had lost her wedding ring. Then there's Richard, offering Raj and me to come with him to the Fijis (his home) with him for a holiday, who listens to DMX and Creed simultaneously with all earnestness. Then there's Tsugumi another Japanese girl. One night, Raj and I asked her if we could try out the internet from her room since the one in my room wasn;t working. She said, "But not now... I have a customer.." Customer? At night? and the 'customer' we found out was a guy.. WHAT?! Raj looked at me with a wierd look. (What is she? A... ahem) Then later we found out she cuts hair. And the 'customer' guy went into the bathroom and washed his hair. (Oh! thought I) Then there;s another guy named Jason (or something) who is supposed to be a tough guy. You might not want to mess with him. Then last but not the least, theres Phoebe, my next door. She's not normally home, but wheh she is, she makes her presence felt. The first time I came, she said, "I am not a very noisy person." But who even asked her? That meant she is noisy. She even knew it herself.
My room is not on a roof, the roof that Rusty watched the coming of monsoon in all its fury.
But that I feel like Rusty, could it mean that I become a good writer too? Haha, maybe. Thats my only dream, to escape to a world I love and live unbothered by sophistication and write about it.
And another thing, Kiwi hates pine trees. I love that fact. Because I love pine trees.
Haha. I was such a racist then. I have changed, please note.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
Thats the secret of the English language. As compared to Latin.
English may seem like a parasitic language, borrowing words from almost about every language on earth. Call it whatever, but why is it that there are a lot of Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Russian, German who flock to English speaking countries to learn English. Why is English so important? Because its a language that has survived, so to say, the onslaught of invasion of globalisation.
It is not a time to only hold on to something we were born with.
But then I also am disgusted with the Korean madness. Shillong's Naga community was a mini Korea-town when I left Shillong. (well I am not saying only Nagas do it. The Garos, a few Khasis and so on are equally gripped with the mania, maybe not as crazily though.)
By the way, I don't think Nagas and Koreans will ever get along together, so we should stop pretending. Why so? Well, I have a guy friend from Korea who was upset the whole day because he saw a dead hedgehog in his garage last night, which he didn't even kill. Heck man. Nagas kill and eat anything that moves. Have you seen a Naga guy being mum and depressed because he ate a dog's tail last night???
P.S. My argument doesn't prove anything. I am not saying what's right or wrong. Korean fans go ahead and be hard out Koreans as much as you want to. And critics of such trend, go ahead and criticize what is going on, make the most hullabaloo of it as you can. Culture is this. Argument and discussion. Interaction of thoughts and ideas.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Glide. Soar. Close your eyes.
Forget. Pick up.
Flash of sunlight. Into the clouds. Open sky.
Earth. Green. Blue rivers. Fields.
Cool. Eagle soars.
Life flash by. Memories.
Rebirth. Soar again. Soar higher.
Touch carpet of lake with your toes.
See fishes in the water.
Across the peaks. Adorn with white.
Blinding brightness. Across the skies.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I clasped my can of Coke. My just bought scarf hugging my forehead. I squinted across at the sand, littered with reddened tourists being cooked in the sun. My friends are down at the water, their tittering voices dissolved into the madness. I don't know why I felt intimidated by the sea. I just sat at the cafe, with a can of Coke, my SLR camera wrapped around my right hand... But that time of solitude - my mind washed by the song of the waves and swaying slightly to the random music that a cafe was playing - was beautiful. It is one of the moments that I cherish of Goa.
There were a lot to complain about at Goa. There were always things that I wasn't happy about. But what I would give to caress my toes in that warm sand again? Hear my friends' voices floating in as one with the voice of the sea.
To be lost in the adventure of the unknown, homelessness and being in a place no one knew me..
Warm sand beneath my feet. I now sit on my Kolhapuri chappals on the sand. The sun is warm - but when it disappears behind a cloud I am reminded it is not summer as yet.
Sumner is quite like Goa's beach that we were in. Little town, thriving on the advantage of the seaside. Small houses.
The sand is fine. It slips through your fingers like a fine cloth. The sea is blue, green, grey. The breeze is gentle and mannered.
Unstoppable. Unresting. Overflowing. Is the sea. Mystery. Dark. Green.
The sea holds a million stories. I look at it and see that it is smug. Mature. Old. Keeper of secrets. Unknown tales. It is tyrannous and repressive and yet liberating. it gives life and takes life.
Blue green grey mystery.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Christchurch has chosen to forsake the significance of the name. Now its just a name that forms in the lips of people, without any thought to it.
But again I should probably remind you, this is an extremely one sided opinion. I have only been watching the city from a very critical eye. I agree there are great things happening also. To mention the Majestic Church again, where they have a vision to win over Christchurch for the better. To retouch the culture, the arts with God, in the best possible way we can.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
There is an escape route that takes you to secret lake much smaller than any other lake I know.
I heard scant music coming from a vent through a thick grove of spruce trunks and I followed my ears.
I discover this lake that is cold and clear, the lapping water on the rocks like rain on clean fingers.
Sound that washes your thoughts and drips your fears cool.
No one bathes on its water. No, its too far for the human legs to take him.
It is not the distance, but it is very far. You need to hear the music.
Close your ears around the rugged trunks.
There is no one who plays the music.
It is just the wind running through the trees and their tresses.
And it is only meant to lead the inquisitive ear to the lake. Glass. Rippling.
But the horror.
It burns. It burns. The lake dries up. The mountain melts. The water singes my skin. My escape burns.
Disenchantment hates my world. And conspires against it.
And everyone on earth upholds disenchantment. And they win always.
Monday, September 29, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
NAISI (on seeing Deirdre) -- transfixed with amazement -- And it is you who go around in the woods making the thrushes bear a grudge against the heavens for the sweetness of your voice singing.--DEIRDRE -- softly -- This night I have the best company in the whole world.NAISI -- still a little formally -- It is I who have the best company, for when you're queen in Emain you will have none to be your match or fellow.DEIRDRE. I will not be queen in Emain.NAISI. Conchubor has made an oath you will, surely.DEIRDRE. It's for that maybe I'm called Deirdre, the girl of many sorrows . . . for it's a sweet life you and I could have, Naisi. It should be a sweet thing to have what is best and richest, if it's for a short space only.--Are you thinking I'd go out after hares when I've had your lips in my sight? (Naisi to Deirdre)
Friday, September 19, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Ditch #2 And as though it had to be worse, when I got to school, I got mail from Whitcoull's about a job application I put in. They had better applicants that they accepted instead of me.
Ditch #2.5 We are still at the beginning stage of our present design project where we are still scribbling our 50 sketches on paper. I was doing it on a4 when the tutor (Belle AKA Ghanti, as we Indians in the class call her) told me in her chewy Kiwi accent, "you need to do them on a3 sheets." I nodded not in the mood for opposition or agument. It was just that I was being a little more economical.
Ditch #3 Last night, I had a Chinese Hakka Noodles Indian Style that I got from the Asian Warehouse, Madras Street (don't you hate how these people STEAL names like Madras, Colombo, Manchester, et al. I will address that issue later) and it was a pre-cooked packet that I had to just microwave heat. It turned out to be the worst sort of noodles I have ever tasted. I almost threw up at just the smell, but I ate most of it anyway (credits to my conscience and economic logic) because I didn't want to waste it. Right after that I washed my hands with lime squeezed from fresh lemon to keep away the smell and headed to bed before my house mates find me and ask what I ate.
Tomorrow is SALT, creative convergence, at church. A creative arts conference. So its class bunking which means extended weekend. Golly!
My plans to buy a bass guitar, from the second hand shop, I guess is not to happen until I get a job. I first need to buy a DSLR camera. Now its past lunch time and I am so hungry. KFC? I detest the smell of KFC. But its most convenient. I think I might just end up there today too. I am so mundane. Same places, same routine. (haha)
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Problems add fuel to the fire that bakes art.
Art is not pretty picturesque adorning of walls, or scatterbrained attempts to create something uncanny. That is creativity or innovation.
What if man never sinned against God? What if the forbidden apple never happened? What if we live in an utopia, a perfect world? Would there have been the art? What would fuel the fire? What would press the hearts of people so much so that they find it necessary to escape. If the world we live in was perfect, what would be point of dreaming for a better world.
Art tells us that there is more. Art seeks God, even unconsciously.
What does it mean then? Heaven will be the end of art?
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
Lunch time was a redeemer. We discovered a jazz band playing at the cathedral square. Like a warm blast of air in South Pole their music was in that cold air. We aborted our KFC plan, three of us and decided to bask in the music.
It was New Orleans Jazz Band performing at Lunchtime Concert just a little ahead of the cathedral entrance in the middle of the square, all of them dressed in black, with a necklace of red and orangey beads hanging from the lady vocalist's neck. My friend Raj remarked, they're from New Orleans, probably fleeing their home with the threat of Hurricane Gustav around.
Anyway, my love for jazz is re-kindled. I ditched the classy genre of music when I was in India, being too cheesy for the summer Indian air. But now that I am in Christchurch winter air, I might have thought about giving jazz another chance. Well now I have. When I get home and am in a mood for music I will fish for my cd collection of jazz music...
Drawing class was at Canterbury old campus. What can I say about Canterbury old campus? I think it is by far the most beautiful set of buildings I have ever seen, maybe not as awe inspiring as those in old Bombay, but beautiful in its own way, neat, cosy and quite solid.
Too bad the campus moved to the newer one in the 70s. Otherwise I would have definitely gone to study there, no matter what subject, irrespective of my D&A design diploma.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Its a lot warmer today. It is overcast but isn't as chilly as two days ago. I might sound stupid, but 1st September is the official beginning of Spring in New Zealand, and since yesterday, the air got heaps warmer. Seriously. It is a crazy place. The weather follows routine. Even the big clocks on bell towers work!
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Today as Birthday lunch on my own I thought I'd eat in that Indian restaurant, and fittingly so, since I was particularly missing the Himalayas for some reason. I even set the mood by playing some Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar on my iTunes as I showered and dressed up.
Kilmore Street was not hard to find. But The Himalayas was. It was raining and really, really cold. It happened to be the coldest day since I got here. I walked for around half an hour, spinning around and around in the same square, but didn't find it.
So I asked an old shopkeeper if he knew a place called the Himalayas. He pointed to a yellow building just a little down the road, "I am not sure if that's the place, but it is an Indian restaurant.." he said. I told him, "Anything Indian will do.."
I walked up there and to my relief it was The Himalayas. I laughed to myself and crossed the road, numbed with the cold, but relieved.
The sign at the door, however, bluntly muttered: CLOSED. I stood for a bit there, letting the truth sink in. I felt like some random Sir Arthur Kenisworth who went on an Indian treasure hunt for years only to be beaten at arm's reach of the treasure by a cheap group of guffawing bandits.
"What do I do? Walk back.." I told myself. Just a few yards away I cluttered into a Thai restaurant named 'Thai Smile'. They had clippings of The Press on the walls. I was in for another disappointment. They didn't serve lunch here. ONLY dinner.
The man though saw me shivering and stopped me as I was opening the door to go back out. He offered me to make lunch. A dinner serving however. Beef. So I thanked him. He called into the kitchen, probably saying something like, "A poor fellow, cold and hungry.. Make something warm for him, dear!" in Thai.
He even brought me warm water. I must have looked pitiful. I didn't even realise I was in such a state myself. The Thai beef was good.
Later I stopped in at Starbucks and had Chai Tea Latte (whatever that is supposed to mean). I remember seeing a pretty Japanese girl, cascading black hair.
At the Convenience Store that evening, I bought two packs of instant noodles. The Korean keeper of the store, one of my very few friends in Christchurch, pointed to a group of Asian kids filing out of the store, "They're a skiing team."
"Ah." I answered, "Very cold today."
"Yeah. That's $3.70."
I put the noodles in.
"Do you eat with chopsticks?"
"No. I don't."
"You take chopsticks. You try eating."
"Ok. How much are they?"
"No, no. Nothing."
Wow, I thought, I haven't had anything for free since I left India.
"Thanks. Thanks." I put the little pack into my back, "See you. Bye bye."
I went out grinning. Free chopsticks. Haha. God is so good.
When I stop making mistakes, and not speak more than I do?
The world frolics and dances. Everything is wrong. I am wrong. I am made right, but I keep behaving wrong.
Perfection, how I long for you.
Friday, August 8, 2008
Is only part of the tree.
And this tree, so complete in itself,
Is only part of the forest.
And the forest runs down from the hill to the sea,
And the sea, so complete in itself,
Rests like a raindrop
In the hand of God.
- Ruskin Bond
Everything in existence points to a basic truth...
The hand of God.
The heat that is so typical of the country. The crowded areas, where your pocket may be thoroughly surveyed, and you won't even be aware of it. The thriving place of the cunning and the simple-hearted. The home of the loud and the silent. The street of the truck and the rickshaw.
I miss the flambouyant banners, the overhanging fluttering advertisements, suspended between two adjacent buildings, and the wild tangle of drooping electric wires with crows perched on them...
I wonder to myself how long will I be locked away from these beautiful realities anymore? How long til I taste that spicy liberation called the Indian air again?
Thursday, August 7, 2008
The room I am in is expensive. I plan to shift to a cheaper one soon.
The street outside is quite pacific at this time of the day. Not much people except some here and there all in a terrible hurry. Class is good. Not taxing. For break we go upstairs for coffee, from where we can see the Southern Alps (which despite it's snow tipped peaks, seem to me sad cousin brothers of the Himalayas). After class it is normally lunch at Subway. Cheapest. But today we were in KFC. Little more expensive.
Agus is funny. He laughs all the time. His cartoon look happy. Tony is a more rock sort of guy. His accent reminds me of Rino.
Nothing much yet, as you can see.
There is a couple of Indian looking guys laughing to themselves, eating burgers off white paper napkins. A group of Burka clad women play ball game near where I am. Earlier they were taking pictures with the gulls.
The sun plays hide and seek behind the clouds. Now it is out, but soon, it will cheekily disappear behind a cloud.
It is quite cold - but I like the thin air.
Two Kiwis talk about the weather nearby.
Ha. There's a guy at the other side of the square singing Akon's 'It don't no matter' - he'e even rapping. Ha, and he has a guitar - he's not a rapper - He's a Kiwi, red pants.
This is fun.
A teenager rumbles pass on his skateboard.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Shall here a thousand volumes teach me only
That men, self-tortured, everywhere must bleed -
And here and there one happy man sits lonely.
- Faust, Goethe
I love the book Faust, though my intelligence (or the lack of intelligence) did not allow me to grasp everything that I read in it (it is a very deep book anyway). This excerpt says the more we learn, the more we only understand that the less understanding we have and the farther and farther from happiness we go, even though ironically, this flight for learning started for the want of happiness. But here and there, sits a man alone, happy. Does this mean happiness is achieved in isolation? Or does it mean a happy man is hard to come by? And what makes him happy? The fact that he is lonely? Or that he is sitting and not running after the wind?
But for now, I shelter in an AC-ed cafe, procrastinating the event of plunging myself headlong into that wet and hugging summer air. I haven't come across a single book store as yet. I have heard of the famous street book corners all over Park Street. All I have witnessed rather have only been Optical stores with grinning spectacled models and tumbledown buildings. Not too bad though. There's always tomorrow.