Day 20: The voice of my subconscious

When I wrote this post yesterday, I had a lot of questions kicking up a mini-storm in my head, derailing my otherwise logical thought process. When Varsh commented that if only we knew all the answers, life would be much less complicated, I told her travel was the answer to everything, especially if to somewhere in the Himalayan region 😉

Which is true, of course. But, when you are not all set for travel, there is another source for answers to these kinds of questions! And, that’s in Hobbes. If you follow Calvin and Hobbes, you’re probably nodding your head right now. Haven’t you wondered how Calvin always asks these philosophical, highly intriguing and seemingly rhetorical questions, only to have Hobbes respond with the simplest answers? Little surprise then, that the answer is in yourself 🙂 In the rare chance that you actually get it from another person altogether, then be assured that person is, in essence, your subconscious!

Anyway, after I posted this yesterday, I got well told off by my subconscious, who then sat me down and took those questions one by one.

Here are enlightenments from my subconscious (up for debate, though not for agreement, because my subconscious is mine own and might think and perform differently from yours for good measure)

Q: Reflections, when ugly, are never the mirror’s fault. It is the fault of the “object” and the “light” that reflects off it at a bad angle. But you do need the mirror to show that to you. Unless you choose to never look in the mirror. Is that wise, though?
A: Not at all. Though, if in your search for ugly reflections, you’re missing out on the beautiful ones, then you’re defeating the whole purpose of reflections and probably should stop it right away! Or, look for the beautiful ones instead and see how they weigh against the ugly ones. Whatever you do, make sure the outcome is a good one. Else, don’t attempt it. It gives you no returns in the long run.

Q: Looking back at the past and drawing lines to the present…is that a good thing to do? Does reflecting on the past and regretting not acting on a certain intuition then…make it sensible to consider that decision now?
A: Yes, it is a great thing to do to help you spot potholes from afar and steer away from them. But unless the people, situations and feeling are the exact same now as they were then, that decision from then is irrelevant in the now. It’s got to be a fresh, well thought out one that will consider and help you brace against impact from all angles.

Q: Are intuitions any good, or is it just a fancy term for a comparison at different levels? Are they just bad feelings to brush off with Hope and Faith, or are they things needing serious thought?
A: Intuitions are good, to be listened to. They’re not fancy or to be brushed off at any time. Please, always listen. Never walk into something you have doubts about. If you’re not convinced, don’t do it.

Q: How much, what kind and when is it OK to forgive? If you cannot forget, what’s the point in forgiving, when memory serves to rekindle the same feelings many times over? How genuine, then, is that forgiveness…and how fruitful?
A: If it didn’t include physical abuse/violence and deliberate false accusations/character assassination, the rest could be considered forgivable. This is a matter of personal choice, of course. But broadly, if it is in someone’s character to accept fault and be corrected, then they deserve that chance at forgiveness. But, just one chance. It’s good to not forget, because if life slaps you in the face again, you know what and how you survived previously. It makes you stronger, wiser. Forgetting something is not in anyone’s immediate control, but the forgiveness can be truly genuine if it is from the heart, with no unhealthy intentions…and highly fruitful in salvaging a lot that matters in life.

Q: How can you weigh the unknown repercussions of your decisions against your future happiness? What if your intuition fails you and you don’t take what could have been the best decision of your life?
A: Everyone knows the answer to this 🙄 It’s the future we’re talking about! Don’t, and you can’t, plan it.

Q: How trustworthy can today’s promises be, when tomorrow is a whole new day?
A: Go ahead and trust – it will do you good. It does make you vulnerable, yes, but not if you’re in the right hands. So, before you call on your heart and trust someone (again), call on your mind and make that smart assessment of whose promises will be kept and whose will not. But please, do trust. For people cannot rip open their hearts and show you that they mean it – they can only tell you and hope for your trust.

Q: Does anyone know how the scalded cat, that feared even cold water, finally got over its fear? Is fear a good reason to not believe?
A: Well, this is a secret of my species; I’m not really allowed to divulge it to your kind. But for you, and only for you, I shall. We just got thirsty. Think about it…if we relied on fear as a good reason to believe that water (in all forms) was going to burn us, we’d have all died of thirst and become extinct. So, no – fear is never a good reason to not believe; fact is.

Q: In an attempt to stay positive, is it wise to brush the unknown, unexpected and unhappy under the carpet?
A: No. Well, the unknown and unexpected are not in your control. The unhappy, however, is. Goes a little back to the first question, really. But if the attempt to stay positive is supported by fact, faith, trust and hope, then maybe (just maybe) brush it under for now. Because, there will always be an opportunity to lift that carpet and clean it up for good.

Q: How late is too late?
A: It’s never too late, for anything. No decision you take is the final decision of your life, unless it is to take your life itself. Which I, as your subconscious, will never let you do: because your life is mine too…and I am, because you are.

If there is one thing I’m grateful for in life, it is my subconscious 🙂 What would I do without you!?

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Day 2: It’s my birthdayyyyyyyyy :)

Yaaaaaaay! It’s (one of) my most favourite day(s) of the year. Well, I could have had it a little better, but what the hell…birthdays come once a year, so I shall still go yaaaaay!

I’m 32 years old. And frankly, I still have no frikking clue what all the fuss about “going into your 30s” is about. I said this two years ago when I turned 30, and I will still say it. Hobbes told me yesterday “You’re going to be 32 years old!” and I went “Yaaay!” 😀 And he said, “You’ll never grow up, will you!?” and told me not to even as I was shaking my head NO 😀

I’ve had the most out-of-ordinary birthday ever. I think since the one i had in 1984 and 85, this must be the ONLY time I spent (almost) all day in bed. I was served breakfast in bed (well, never wishing for that one again, ever). I was given a massive surprise by the Queen of Subtlety and I could barely make my shock known, much less talk to her or go yay! I was under the care of the loving heart all day and now feel miserable for ruining all the plans.

But here’s the best of it all. My biggest birthday-wish of all times came true. I got this! So what if I’m 32!? For some things in life, there is no age limit. Yay (back to doing some mental somersaults)!

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Ok…crawling back under the cover now, with a mug of steaming chukku kappi and some lehyam. And some coffeecream birthday cake. Calvin and Hobbes is the best. For always. ❤

I’m 28 today :)

And I feel great 🙂 Not worried about the 30s looming ahead, I’ve no clue why. I’ve heard just too many of my friends worrying about being close to turning 30. Just finished chatting with a cousin, who said she’s terrified she’ll be 30 in two years 😀 Well, so will I; but I’m not bothered. No worries at all, about having turned a year older. In fact, I don’t even feel 28. I still feel 22. That’s when I first got out of the comfort of home and hometown, and stepped into a new city for good, and joined a college for my post graduation course. Ever since, it’s been a string of “new”s…be it cities, companies, job roles, people, situations. So, every new thing that comes along, makes me feel what I felt when I was 22. I’m stuck there, and I like it 😀

So, on to the birthday news…

I got wished close to 18 hours in advance by Hobbes. For some reason I just don’t understand, he seems to think I have a special kind of birthday that extends from start of 1st Nov to end of 2nd Nov. Interesting. Anyways, when I laughed at him for doing this every year (well, last year he was in the U.S., and he said it was because of all the timezone disorientation 🙄 ), he said he was in Goa, and time zones work differently there because of all the alcohol in the Goan air. And also, that he just wanted to be the first one to wish me, that’s all. Veenidathu kidannurundu, athra thanne. 😀

The Queen of Subtlety, when I texted her last night saying I’d be working from home today (for obvious reasons, birthday and work), threw a fit saying I was lying, that she knows I just want to avoid office on the second of November. Well, we all avoid office on our birthdays, she also did. So I was a little baffled by all the accusations. Anyways, after that she sneered at me with a “you wont be awake at 12, I presume”, to which I let out a deep, long sigh and quietly said “lol, yes I will. pls call (to wish)”. I was falling off my chair by 11 itself, but I thought I should stay up and wait for Her Majesty’s call.12 came and went. 12.01 came and went. 12.05 came and went. 12.10 came and went. 12.15 came and went. Well, you get the drift, right? So, me being me, called HER up. And guess what? She did not pick up 😀 So I called again. This time, after the 4th ring-ring, she answered. This conversation followed:

She: Hello…
Me: What behaviour IS this!?
She: Ehe ehe…I am so sorry, I slept off. Happy birthdayyyy.
Me: Yeah, I thought so! After making me stay up, you useless [in my mind I added ‘piece of shit’]
She: You won’t believe it…I stayed on till 11.45, telling myself it’s just 15 more mins…and next thing i know, there’s drool and my phone is ringing…ehe ehe
Me: Yeah, I figured!
She: But I still love you.
Me: I’m supposed to be telling YOU that!
She: Ooops.
Me: So much for being surprise queen, you bloody…I’ve never been THIS surprised before. I’ve got to be the first one to call someone to make them wish me! Pffft.
She: See, this is what happens when you don’t like surprises…this was all planned, this was my surprise for you.
Me: Realllly?
She: Damn, I should’ve said this earlier. AND. This does NOT go out to the public.
Me: I can’t wait to call the other two and tell them this.
She: Fiiiiineah! Be that way! [it is at this point that she sounded like herself; till then, there was a thick coating of embarrassment blanketing her voice, making her sound like a tiny little butterfly crushed under the weight of 3 quilts and 4 pillows!]

Soon after, I called my mom to remind her it’s my birthday. Guess i know her just too well, she’d completely forgotten. Again, “What behaviour is this!? I have just one birthday every year, and you forget that!?” And then comes an apology, a round of laughter and the “Happy birthday” 😀 Oh, this happens most times, and I make it a point to remind people to wish me 😀 Then i teased them all for forgetting Pumbaa’s birthday, and now mine too. Anyway, that shows that we’re both treated equally in the house 😀 Which is a good thing. Comparing me to him is always a flattery. Like how she once saw a picture of mine and said “Pretty. Almost as good-looking as Pumbaa. Almost.” 😀

Ok, that’s all for now. I just HAD to write down the spectacle that The Queen of Subtlety is, before I would forget that brilliant midnight conversation 😉 but I did not want to dedicate another entire post on her, or she’ll start thinking too highly of herself 😀

Thank you, everyone, for the wishes. The ones that were never expected, turned out to be extra sweet. And, thank God for the Internet and webcams 🙂

And while we are at it, Happy Birthday, Shah Rukh Khan 🙂

Now, I really have to get back to work :-/

True friends are hard to come by!

It’s amazing how you can speak right to my heart… Oh, that’s a song.  Not how I meant to start this. 😀

But well, it’s amazing alright. How the best of people always have the best of friends 😉 Like how Calvin has Hobbes; Asterix has Obelix; Tintin has Snowy; the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. have each other; and well, Boban has Moli. 😀

I think the best of the lot is Calvin and Hobbes.

And if I be Calvin, I’ve found my Hobbes 😉 [Or vice-versa, if my ‘Hobbes’ doesn’t like being a tiger 😀 *But for now, you’ll have to make do with being Hobbes. The other option would be to make you Richard Parker, who coincidentally is again a tiger. I think Hobbes is much cuter, nicer and definitely more fun to be with*]

I’m very, very, VERY choosy when it comes to friends—especially the kind that can be ‘Hobbes’. And this one was, well, totally unexpected. Someone I definitely did not see myself ever getting so close to or being such great friends with!

The time I first met Hobbes, I never thought we’d ever strike a chord. Hobbes seemed a very serious, withdrawn person. The kind that is so withdrawn, they barely look up at you when you’re being introduced to them and quickly nod before going back to their work. Uh uh…definitely not the kind who would be friends with someone goofy like me 😀 So well, I maintained a distance, and was always just courteous and polite.

I liked Hobbes, but that was about it. In the meantime, I also heard bits of conversation here and there of Hobbes being this serious person; people seemed to be quite scared of Hobbes, and I saw very few people being comfortable and carefree around Hobbes—cementing my impression of Hobbes as someone who could not easily be “friended”. Well, that impression lasted about a week.

Till I first heard Hobbes laugh. It was a loud, clear, right-from-the heart guffaw. Yes, a guffaw. You have to hear it to know what I mean 😀 Despite not knowing what the joke was or who it was shared with, I found myself looking up and smiling at Hobbes. Well, to be precise, at the back of Hobbes’ head! 😀 And that was when I figured Hobbes out: in an instant. And I liked Hobbes a lot more then 🙂

Only someone that’s completely genuine, sincere, adorable and so full of humour can ever laugh like that. Seriously. Laughter—especially the kind that emanated from Hobbes that day, and many, many times after that—is something that will give away a person’s character immediately: it can tell you who is fake, who is real 🙂 Hobbes was definitely very, very real! I figured I could be myself, goofy and well, just me. The only question was if Hobbes wanted that. Hehe.

You need to know the nuances of laughter to be able to figure people out 😀 When I shared that piece of insight once, Hobbes said “I refuse to laugh like that from now on!” 😀 Well, the damage was done already, my dear 😀 Hobbes once told me “Not everyone retorts to me the way you do. You picked my sense of humour too fast. And I’m not like this to everyone either. I appear serious, proud and very quiet. It’s a facade…kind of a protection that I put around myself.” Well, I’m glad I broke through the facade, and damaged your “aura” (which I still insist on never having noticed :P). I now have a friend for life—and an awesome one at that 😉

When I look back now, I still cannot believe Hobbes and I became friends. I would never have believed it if someone had told me then that Hobbes and I would become such friends someday. I would’ve scoffed, I suppose 😉 But well, we did become friends…though very, very, very gradually.

With Jaya, my best friend—an alter ego, maybe I should say—it took just about 5 minutes for us to bond and become friends for life. Was I not so choosy then, you ask? Well, is it tough to like yourself in 5 minutes? 😉 Anyway, I thought a friend as valuable as that would never come by a second time. I was wrong. I guess 2 really is a good number for me 🙂

Hobbes is perhaps one other person who is equally choosy about friends. I guess we have both had enough experiences that hold us back, make us take our time to fully understand another person before going from ‘just friends’ to ‘great friends’. And now, I can say without a moment’s hesitation that Hobbes is a “great” friend to have.

I’ve seen Hobbes in good times and bad—and I have immeasurable respect for the way Hobbes wades through it all.

Hobbes’ sense of humour and quick wit, for one. It can leave you laughing uncontrollably till you end up gasping for air at times…OR leave you so stunned, you wouldn’t know whether to laugh or just gawk. Spontaneity at its best. Certain conclusions and one-liners Hobbes comes up with are…well…bloody hilarious. Something you just do not expect from a person who appears “serious, proud and very quiet”.

There are times when Hobbes gets washed over by a wave of depression…and I pretend not to understand that and keep insisting that Hobbes smile at least “half a smile” 😀 *Hobbes, I really do understand when you’re in the dumps, but there is nothing I can do to help you at such times. Apart from telling you to smile! Apart from listening and saying “Hmmm”*

There are times when I am pissed off with something and I go crib to Hobbes—knowing very well that my problems are nothing compared to Hobbes’. But well, me being me, I still crib 😀 I could go on and on and on and on, and Hobbes would patiently listen. There would be nothing Hobbes will have to say, to help me, but listen Hobbes will. No questions asked, no judgements made. And all this, while I am just making a mountain out of a miniscule mole hill. 🙂

When it comes to a fault, Hobbes does not see if there’s friendship or enmity. If Hobbes has to blast, Hobbes will blast. Despite being such close friends, I’ve been blasted too (which surprised a few people because we were supposed to be ‘friends’; now who blasts friends, huh?). Well, I do. Hobbes does, too. What are friends for, if they can’t correct you when you’re wrong? If there’s credit to be given, Hobbes gives it generously—again, irrespective of friendship or enmity. I think that’s a fabulous quality: to be able to separate life from work 🙂

If you are a friend, Hobbes will perhaps die for you. Well, not literally, of course. But if you want Hobbes to do something for you, Hobbes will do it, despite perhaps not liking it at all. It always surprises me, because I would never do that! I’ve kidded about certain things, and Hobbes always agreed to do it, even after admitting it may not be the best thing to do. Maybe one should NOT be so fiercely loyal to friends. You never know how loyal your ‘friend’ is to you. *Note the point, Hobbes :)*

There are times when Hobbes deserves a kick—for judging people wrongly, for making the wrong ‘friends’, for trusting the wrong people (repeatedly, at that), for helping the ones who do not deserve to be helped…and in all this process, getting hurt. But well, can’t be helped…because Hobbes is Hobbes. I like that 🙂 *No matter what the other person is or does, you have to be you, Hobbes :)*.

Yes, now that I think about it, I really like that! People come and go, some even walk over Hobbes, leaving bruises…but the next time they need help, Hobbes does not think twice before helping (and most probably getting hurt again). Though I’ve blasted Hobbes for that many times, I think that’s amazing. *Remain so, just stop expecting any gratitude, whatsoever. And I still will blast you the next time you do that :D* In Hobbes’ own words, “You fool me once – you are clever; You fool me twice – I am stupid; Hobbes is not stupid; wow, I like that line”.  I do too 😀 😀

Of course, Hobbes has faults. Well, who doesn’t (except me!), right? Hobbes frets too much about the past; is too perfect and orderly (yes, that’s a fault!); goes into a shell and refuses to talk about it if something upsets Hobbes; does not appreciate telegrams (!); is not a great fan of Calvin & Hobbes despite being christened Hobbes (!!); thinks an i10 is better than a Punto (bah); aaaaaand walks way too fast 😀 😀 Saddest of all, Hobbes does not forgive the mistakes made by self (if they can be called ‘mistakes’, which I personally don’t think is what those are; I think everything is a lesson, a learning, an experience…it makes you one bit stronger, one bit wiser). *You need to get over them, Hobbes. I know it is easier said than done, but you have to. Otherwise, you won’t really get time to make new mistakes 🙂 What’s life without mistakes, to crib over and learn from?*

There are times Hobbes can be absolutely morbid, absolutely mind-numbing and absolutely shocking. I have fallen off my chair quite often at certain things Hobbes said. I’ve laughed sooooo much that I’ve gone so red in the face, making Hobbes all alarmed that something might happen to me. 😀

I’ve also gaped in awe at certain other things. Like the courage, the perseverance, the patience, the sense, the logic. Most importantly, the pure will to survive and succeed.

The most amazing thing, however, is the way Hobbes can get up or down to any age level 😀 Right from 5 to 50 😉 We are capable of being two kids fighting over who is better than the other…and can, in the blink of an eye, be two very mature adults, having a serious discussion on life’s complexities 😀

We have long conversations and longer spells of comfortable silences. I read somewhere “The best kind of friend is one with whom you sit on a bench, saying nothing and when you get up and go, you feel as if you had the best conversation of your life!” Oh, I believe that to the last word now 🙂

*Hobbes, I’m immensely grateful to you for the companionship you gave during some real bad times; for listening to all my cribbing like it was the most important thing at that moment; for guiding me on when I needed directions; for the many, many coffee breaks and walks; for the many deals; for some real impressive pep talks; for the umpteen laughs; for all the mentorship; for cheering me up when I was depressed; for making September 2011 a bearable ordeal; for correcting me when I was wrong; for being a true friend all the time. And most importantly, for being the delight that you are…for being you.* 🙂

Friendship is a rather strange thing. It is not about going out together and ‘having fun’ all the time; it’s not about having weekend trips together; it is not about lavishing gifts on them; it’s not about sitting around a table together and secretly wondering if you have everything your friend has. Most importantly, it’s NOT about being supportive even when your ‘friend’ is obviously wrong: that’s being the goody-goody, I’m-there-for-you-whatever-you-do Samaritan. Friends don’t let each other tread the wrong path.

Friendship is definitely about being there for each other, through good times and bad. But more importantly, it’s about being a critic and a guide. Goof around, have fun, call each other names, pull each other’s legs, land a surprise, lend a shoulder. But when your friend is wrong, have the courage to point it out, help the person correct the wrong and get back into the right. Be an unconditional friend, but be a valuable one first. That’s when you’re a true friend.

Which is why…

TrueFriendsAreHardToComeBy

Guess with Hobbes, I just got damn lucky 🙂

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P.S.: Hobbes, here’s wishing you a fantastic new beginning that remains fantastic till the end. What you leave behind, is definitely something that is best left behind 🙂

P.S. of P.S.: I’m not to be held responsible if being known as “Hobbes” does further damage to your “aura” 😀 😀

P.S. of P.S. of P.S.: I still insist: there is no aura 😀 😛