Six years after quietly walking in, she quietly walked out. No doubts. No questions. No lingering regrets. Just the hope that you left their world a tiny bit better than you found it.
In the end, even the biggest events of our lives finish with a quiet whisper. And when it does, a lot of the loud bangs which precede the end start to make sense. We tend to hold on to everything just a tad longer than we should. We like to believe that there is still a tiny bit of you that can turn things around. Perhaps that is what makes us human. Hoping against hope. And in the process, lose a little bit of ourselves.
Out of the ruins, however, a new life germinates. A bright new hope. A wholly different kind of hope. One that you did not bother to think if it exists. And it hits you like a bulldozer. Again and again. Life is irritatingly stubborn. Because otherwise, it would never get a chance. It whacks you on your head long enough for you to sit up and take notice. And once you do, you realize what you were missing.
Life is not long enough to carry regrets or grudges. It is just about enough to carry someone’s love in your heart. I have made that space.
We are human. We forget. Sometimes even the things closest, most fundamental to us. And sometimes, whiff of fresh air reminds us of them. Implores us to come back. Forces us to rejoin. And the smile on our faces make it all worth it.
“There’s a great line by Groucho Marx,” I said. “‘She’s so in love with me she doesn’t know anything. That’s why she is in love with me.'”
Whenever one’s faith in life and all that it contains begins to waver, we reach out to the one that really matters to us. We escape life as we know it and take shelter in the inviting, safe bosom of their saviour. And suddenly we are able to breathe.
Believers have their Gods. I have my motorcycle and the open road.
I was about to begin a new chapter in life. It seemed apt to close the last one with a communion with my God – the open road. So I packed up and trundled into Kumaon, the lush green hills and jungles of Uttarakhand. And it was good!
Back in February, I was invited to speak at the TEDx Conference at NMIMS, Bangalore. My entire exposure to TED till now had been through the remarkably interesting videos made freely available for the world to watch under the appropriate tagline – Ideas Worth Sharing. I hadn’t really thought that my own experiences were really worth being shared from such a large platform.
If at some point your do not ask yourself, “What have I gotten myself into?”, then you are not doing it right.
Fishing? Attending weddings? Visiting Durga Puja pandals?
The options are many. Then I saw this image.
It was way back in November that the Bullet moved last. Struck momentously by a cow’s ample rear, it smashed face first into the smooth tarmac of Spiti. So serious was the impact and so impeccable the timing that it is now four months and the Bull is still lying injured, snow covered and unable to move in Manali. At such a juncture, the rather incredulous call from a highway-hero friend (Deepak Dongre) evoked the obvious question – what will I ride? The time of the Classic 500 had come.
The morning of March 3, 2012 seven motorcyclists met for breakfast at Manesar. Five proceeded to Rewari Railway Station, 90 kms from New Delhi.
The signs were all there. I just chose to ignore all of them. I had just decided to go on a roadtrip to the most inhospitable of all Himalayan regions with two city slickers who wouldn’t sleep on some sticky pillows if their life depended on it. I just didn’t see it coming.