Thursday, June 19, 2008

The sweetness of parting

It is a common scene in the various social or official circles. Someone is leaving your office, locality, home for better prospects (or otherwise!) and there is this sudden demand for that person. Words of praise flow in which have been absent for so many years of togetherness. Gifts are exchanged or given; contact addresses are exchanged (no matter the next moment it is not to be found) and invariably there is an unknown, unheard of sentiment which chokes many a throat and in some overflowing–with-emotion cases wets many a shoulder.

I always wonder where all these are hidden when the person is physically present in our life. Why do we mask our feelings or worse why display something which is not exactly what we feel? If it is the second case it is a total hypocritical display and less said the better but what really intrigues me is the first case.

Is it that we expect people to be always available at our beck and call and hence think they have a permanent availability for us? It is like the chair or sofa in our houses which is always available for you to sit once you enter the room. We never realize the importance of the same till it is not available one day or someone else is occupying it. I am not saying that we need to garland the seat but yes acknowledge and be thankful for it being available to you is something which we can do on a regular basis. We do not need to wait for it’s disappearance to know the importance. Ditto for the people in our lives J

It was not until I moved from Mumbai (still Bombay for me) that I realized the importance of a regular sweeper, maid, and person taking clothes for ironing (dhobi). I took their presence so much for granted and believed they would be there for eternity till I landed at Chennai. Of course the absence (or periodical presence) of all these facilities has made me more self reliant but I do think I could have shown more gratitude to my folks (when you are in a nuclear family these people really become “your folks”) back home.

When dear ones leave this world, there is a sea change of feeling than when they were alive. Sometimes it takes the death of a wife to make the husband realize the importance of a clean house and round-the-clock kitchen service. I wonder what is the point in holding yearly ceremonies or death anniversaries for the husband when there was no loving word spoken by the wife except “Food is ready” types of cold statements while he was alive. Many people argue that “true feeling is inside the heart” but can someone peek in to your heart and see your feeling. “It’s only words and words are all I have ...” goes the song and it is so true I think.

So I shall not wait for clogged networks to do us apart. I am telling each one of you reading this. I love and respect your presence in my life and the difference you have made to my being.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The cozy comfort zone!

I had a colleague who was so used to the comfort of traveling in crowded trains and buses (pun intended) that he found the idea of a car drive unnerving! Such was his comfort level in the crammed modes of transportation that the idea of spending time all by himself in a less crowded car was totally unpalatable. Aah! The cozy comfort zone!!!

Set patterns of reactions (or inactions!) gets me thinking of the sense of security we derive by conforming to the same behavioural mould we have got ourselves in to. We as human beings simply love to recreate old stories again and again and refuse to think of creating a new history so very often.

For seven long years (yes in IT 7 years is long) I worked in a company because of the known work, good friends comfort of being “one” with the system. All along totally oblivious on how I was lagging in terms of monetary benefits or lagging on technology advancements It was not until I changed jobs (only because the company shut doors!) that I realized the huge ugly gap which was staring at me. I am not advocating leaving a job frequently but to get in to a cozy corner and not venture out will definitely get us to the situation of asking “Who the hell moved my cheese?”

There are comfort zones in most area of life: the escapist route from troubled situations, not working towards enhancing dormant relationships, dragging one to work for the comfort of a bank balance no matter the work no more inspires us. Ofcourse not forgetting the never to be returned messages, or missed calls to avoid all the people who confront us, the ignored chat messages to name a few “modern” comfort zones

To achieve better than the best we need to get out of our established patterns and adapt to new ones. To reach new heights we need to strengthen our wings. It needs the grit of a differently abled person who inspite of falling umpteen times huddles back in to his feet and makes it up in the race no matter what the past had done to him. Such behaviours just add fuel to a false sense of security which we cling on to like dear life. Escaping from our true potential is a huge speed breaker in our own progress as a human being.