WELCOME TO MY PARADISE

Viewing the sky from my office seat, my eyes gleamed. Hurrying to shut down my laptop, I sanitized my hands and put on my mask, it was going to rain anytime soon and I could hardly wait to reach home and enjoy the weather. As I frantically enter my cab, it rains. Gazing out of my window seat, watching people in motion wearing colorful masks, was what I enjoyed viewing, on my way back home.  

Dinner was wholesome, tonight. Sipping my lemon tea, I move towards my balcony. The view from here is something I cannot afford to miss before hitting my bed. I see lights everywhere, vehicles honking with their headlights blinking, the warm yellow streetlights, lights coming from the apartments and so many other lights. What beautiful chaos to view on a cold night. Finally, I head towards my bed to sleep with my thoughts where my vivid imaginations, cluster together to create my very own paradise. 

The view here, guided me through the route to enter the gate of my dreams, tonight. I visualize myself, counting the lights. But wait, I felt like I was missing something. To reconfirm, I open my eyes and rush to my balcony. Scanning every corner, I hear saying to myself, “No, I haven’t missed a single piece”. Nodding my head, I move towards my bedroom, yet my mind provoked me to rush to the balcony again. In frustration this time, my eyes slowly moved towards the sky, and oh dear, I missed the Moonlight. 

My heart ached to realize this. He stood there all night watching me from above, waiting for my glance and I forget to count him in. Wow!!

We all are so lost, amidst these lights, like the people who can blink in and out of our lives.  We are so trapped in their artificial glow, not knowing that they can put us in the dark when their time isn’t right. They can be replaced anywhere and at any time, they come with a bill and we pay a price.

And, when these lights dim, we look up to this moon, to share our sorrows, our secrets, our tears, and our fears. He is like a person, who will wait to hear from you, spilling the truth. No matter the times, we forget him or ignore him, he will never whine. He is irreplaceable and needs no electricity to be fed, to charge you, and thus he becomes that person who will continue to burn himself/herself like a candle in the dark to give you all it has. 

The next day when I woke up, I rushed to hug him with tears flowing down my eyes. He, my father, the moon in my paradise.

WHY I AM ALWAYS LOOKING AT LIFE THROUGH A WINDOW?

Home is where the heart is and everyone’s home has that special place or a corner which is very close to one’s heart.

I too have a favourite spot but it’s at my mother’s place. Yes, no place has been able to beat that spot, not even my own house. You must be wondering what is that spot is, so let me tell you more about it.

My mother stays in a very elite locality of Mumbai and most of the structures there are termed as heritage. Thus, my mom’s residence is old fashioned. High ceiling, big veranda, big rooms and big windows. Our drawing room adorns one such window and that exactly is my favourite spot.

This old fashioned window is far more comfortable and attractive than a french window. Even now when I visit mom’s place that is the place I spend time at.

It is a perfect square enclosed with iron bars and there is a slab built in this window which makes it a sofa or a chair if it is pampered with nice mattresses and cushions but it looks and is perfectly comfortable even without all these add ons. You can just plunge into this window and watch outside. It looks out to the main road which means you will always see a lot of people roaming around, many many vehicles speeding through and lots of shops. We are located on the ground level so that makes it even better to chit chat with passing by neighbours and acquaintances.

I stick to this window ever since I was a baby. My mom would plop me there put both my legs outside through the iron bars and stand behind me. That was the locking mechanism when I would not allow her to feed me properly. My dad would make me sit there and show taxis, buses and traffic lights and that was so entertaining and exciting to me as a child. It was here that I would run to when my friends used to come calling me. Those where the days when landline phones were a luxury which not many could afford. It meant that you needed to personally visit the friend even if you want to say a hi and this was exactly the place where I used to pretend to play many games like office-office, house-house, teacher-teacher etc.

I did not outgrow this window even though I was growing up. The pretend plays were now replaced by secret sharing sessions with my bestie. As we grew older further, it was this place from where we would watch out guys (bird watching). It was this place where we would easily spend an hour chitchatting unplanned, only because my friend was passing by and I spotted her exactly at that time.

A cup of ginger tea tastes even better if I am relishing it at this window. And the drizzles of first rain feel more refreshing when they barge in through this window. The windy weather in the evening and the rush of a cold wave is even stronger when we open this window. This place makes every season more beautiful and adventurous.

This window has a very special place in my heart, and why not? It is this place which has absorbed my silent tears when my heart was broken the first time, it is this place which is a witness to my lovey-dovey talks with my husband – be it on phone or in person. It is this place which reads my mind and calms me down whenever I am worried or upset. It is this place which helps me seek solitude and it is this place which soothes my soul.

In real words, I see my whole life through this window and I always will.

Even today, whenever I go to my mom’s place I jump to sit by this window.

Which is your favourite place?

THE SPACE THAT BRINGS A GLOW TO MY FACE

A view of the world outside, a sneak peek into the hustle bustle of everyday life, gaping at the pitter patter of raindrops, welcoming the first rays of the morning sun, gazing at the full moon while basking in its cool beams – a place that offers me all this, is the space I enjoy in my house. A seat or a bed by the window – that’s my most cherished space!

The house where I grew up for the first fifteen years of my life (in government officers’ quarters), had a window in the bedroom that faced the rear of another building, but gave a diagonal view of the road outside. That is where I loved to sit on rainy afternoons, enjoying the sprinkles of rainwater that trickled in through the railings, watching people scurry along the way to escape the lashing rain, observing the rainwater flow down the walls of the nearby buildings all the while savouring the chill that had enveloped the environment due to the rain. On hot summer afternoons, when the windows were shut to prevent the heat from making its presence felt in the room while my parents rested, I stealthily kept a few inches of the window open so as to continue reading my story books – only to have my mother shout that I would spoil my eyes by reading in less light!

The house that we moved in to next, where I spent the next ten years of my life had a window next to my bed! In fact, I had chosen that space giving the bed space next to the wall to my little sister. The gentle cool breeze that greeted me through the window in the early mornings and evenings was enough to refresh me for the rest of the day. I loved waking up to the greeting of the soft sun rays in the mornings. And, the silvery moonbeams beckoned me to stare at the pearl in the starry sky as myriad thoughts crisscrossed my mind before drifting off to sleep.

When I moved to a metro city for pursuing my career, the only requirement that mattered most to me while room-hunting was a window. The room that I chose was one which had windows cover half-the wall on one side. Though it didn’t give me much of a view, due to the pattern of construction, I was satisfied with whatever view it offered.

Moving back to my hometown (we had our own house constructed by then), what I missed most was a window space to call my own! Of late, I have made peace with a window space which stares into a neighbour’s backyard. Watching the squirrels scamper across the backyard, the sparrows and kingfishers flutter and perch awhile on the guava and mango trees, the boroughs of the mango tree weigh heavy with green mangoes awaiting to ripen – gives me immense joy.

A window space gives a free flow to my thoughts, feelings and emotions. Most significantly, it helps me to connect with God away from the din of the household – humming a song of praise or whispering a word of prayer – be it in the serene visuals of nature or in observing the hurry and burry of people moving along the street.

Window space – that’s my space!