About this blog

And here I am, adding yet another blog to the long list of blogs that I seem to be miraculously managing amidst all my daydreaming. This one, however, is for the mundane day to day happenings

Thursday, 24 December 2009

From Frustration to Flying Elephants

Being an unrecognized artist and an unpublished writer can be quite a frustrating business. Especially when one does it on a full-time basis. I can verywell imagine what America must have felt before being discovered by Christopher Columbus. There is always a part of you that keeps telling you that success is just a few more miles away, you will get there in good time, and hence you must keep going. But there is also this other part that creeps into focus every once in a while (most often accompanied by an unpaid bill or two) blaming you for having put everything else at stake to pursue your dreams. In the resulting implacable debate, it is always the former that succeeds and ends up convincing me to carry on in the path that i have chosen. It tells me to get there or die trying and I just heed

Fort Cochin turned out to be far more beautiful than i had expected it to be. Last weekend I got to hang out there with a bunch of awesome people. There is never a dull moment when story-tellers, writers, editors, and artists gather around a coffee table. And there I was, right amidst a group of fellow-sapiens, sipping on a cup of earl grey, and deeply engaged in trading tales for tales. After that, we took a stroll about the harbor and I realized for the second time since Vasco how much i loved the sight of ships - sailing away and coming in from far far away, each having a story of its own to tell. There was this red cargo ferry, the color of blood, heading off towards the horizon. Its name, 'The Red Pearl', was painted across its back in bold white letters. I kept watching it till it looked no bigger than a tiny speck of blood from a pin-prick on the surface of the water. Oddly enough, it reminded me of the umpteen times I've had my skin scraped by thorns while playing with my cousins in my aunt's rose-garden. From somewhere off the shore came what I think is a destroyer, going by the the stuff I have learned from my grandpa's lectures about the different types of ships and boats that they use in the Indian Navy. It was the same greyish blue color that the sea was during that hour of the day. On its deck, in the scorching sun, stood motionless and in attention, eight navel police men in lightning-white uniforms. They looked just like the front row of white pawns in a game of chess that was just about to commence. The knight...rook..erm...captain...Master chief at arms..or whoever he was - that pompous man in the slightly more dignified looking uniform - seemed to me, judging by his vigorous lip movements, to be abusing them. It was bad enough to be made to stand out there under the burning gas-ball. I thought about how much I would have hated the guts of Mr. Pompous-in-a-more-dignified-looking-uniform, had I been one among the eight hapless pawns standing in attention on the deck and being shouted at

On the other side of the harbor were Chinese fishing nets that looked like those giant catapults that were used to haul rocks at the charging troops during the medieval days. If you have played 'Age of empires' or any of its succeeding strategy games, you would know what I am talking about. We stood there watching as one of the contraptions was being pulled up from the water, expecting to see a truck load of ill-fated fishes rising to their doom. Instead, in the middle of the giant net, jumping up and down as if on a trampoline, was a single fish hardly a foot long. Those Chinese nets could have been put to better use if they had been improvised to catapult people from one side of the harbor to an awaiting giant cushion on the other. It would any day have been more fun than traveling across the harbor on a slow boat

You might find the streets of Fort Cochin to be very similar to how you would have pictured an 18th century port-town to be: Intricate paths of cobbled stone, with antique shops, old caf├ęs, inns, and foreign currency exchange counters tightly packed together on either sides. You get to see people from almost every corner of the world trotting, walking, and cycling around as though they all belonged there

Before sundown we were seated in a rattling mess of a red bus heading to a friend's house where we were being put up for the night. As the bus tossed us about while careening through the pot-hole infested roads of Cochin, my mind shifted from its former state of frustration to my regular world of flying elephants, white whales, and steam-punk cloning machines made out of dismantled old train engines

2 comments:

  1. Oh and one more thing, you writing inspires in me both awe and jealousy.
    All the very best.

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  2. Ah! Good going bro! Nicely written. You have the eviable skill of filling your pen with the magical ink of imagination. Keep it flowing.:)

    Praveen.

    ReplyDelete