Leaving home…

I am finally going to leave home at the crack of dawn tomorrow. Agreed – it comes a few years late compared to my friends who did their first degree from other cities. Nevertheless, the day has come. I am stoked. It is a promotion and an enhanced job role that is taking me to a different city.

I am excited to tackle all the challenges that come my way. Honestly, I can’t wait.

leaving-home

I can’t wait to see the house that I shall turn into a home.

But, then again, I am sad, for I am leaving family and love behind. That is a void that no big city or professional success can fill. The people I love the most are not going to be with me. That is a big blow to me.

No matter how much of an “adventurous-and-ready-to-check-out-new-places” guy I seem to be, I am also someone who wilts like a rose in the evening when there’s no one to go back home to, when there’s no one to  watch silly sentimental Bollywood movies with, when there’s no  whose hands I could hold while walking.

What is home without loved ones?

Damn! Why can’t some decisions be easy, like for instance, to be happy or to feel sad?

PS: Happy new year friends!

Image courtesy: www.mendosa.com

Home.

Home is a word that brings with it a plethora of emotions, memories, and images. You tend to get used to a given set of images, sounds, and sights that makes you believe that you are ‘at home’.

When that set is assaulted by a whole new set of experiences, you tend to feel a little lost. The climate is different, the food tastes very funny, and the language is alien. You meet new people and the gather new experiences – all of this happens too quickly, and before you know it, you are overwhelmed by it.

But, we humans are such great fighters. We learn to evolve so beautifully and quickly, that oftentimes the end result can be incredible.

Here I am, 2370 Kilometres away from my home, in a city entirely alien to me, in a flat with two guys from two different cities. Yet, I am at home. We have our own house rules, our own in-house jokes, and our favourite topics for discussions.

This, for me, is the triumph of the human spirit. We find a way, we find a home; sooner rather than later. We build new experiences, and feelings that make us feel ‘at home’ again.

 I’ve found a ‘stand-in’ home for a month, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t miss my real home, the blue mountains and the red river, and more than anything, I miss my people. For now, this ‘stand-in’ home makes me feel a little less lonely.

To Guwahati. . .

“The city is not a concrete jungle, it is a human zoo.”
—Desmond Morris

I don’t know for certain if I can rule out calling my city Guwahati a concrete jungle, and call it a human zoo instead.
At times, it has been both.
At times, either or neither.

They say cities speak to you. It’s walls, alleys, streets, buildings whisper stories all the time.

But, Guwahati for me has been like cinema – one that will end with my departure from here.

I have seen struggles. A scarred childhood, harsh winters.
Cruel people selling out souls for money.
I have been at the side of underdog, the under-fed, the honest, the good.

The city had been bad to them, for years, and then, it had smiled on them.
Hard work had given way to fortune.

I have seem bombs go off in my city. Once, the explosion was so loud I could hear it from my little home. I was very young then. I was scared. Dad was at work.

We feared the worst.
But no, I didn’t have to grow up without a father. It was a narrow escape. The city was kind enough. I thank her.

The alien city once decided to test my mother’s tenacity and rained fire on us.
Mother fought on. She was not the one to blink first. Then, the city gave up. And mother had her way.

I grew up. I fell in love with this city. It’s ancient history. It’s blood red river. The fact that it was growing to be a cosmopolitan. But, the growth was not uniform.

They called me a Bangladeshi for I spoke the Bengali tongue. But the city never ceased loving me. It understood.

It’s hills, the ancient temples, the river islands are still mysterious in my eyes. I still somewhat fear the fury of the red river.

Then, one day the bombs went off again. Extremism was not dead, after all.
I saw scarred dead bodies, severed fingers, and heard gruesome stories of the police’s disrespect towards corpses.

The city limped on to life. Culprits were nabbed. But somewhere justice got lost in red tape and protocol.

I have laughed here. Sometimes I’ve weeped. But, the river, the rain soaked soil, the hills have consoled me. And I have found comfort in their motherly embrace.

That’s the thing about a great city. It’s never too cruel. Never too kind.

If it doesn’t kill you, it sure teaches you how to live, despite the imperfections.