Did I ever tell you?
My balcony and bedroom windows are magical. They serve as timeless time machines. Whenever I look through them (which is quite a lot always, considering that I’m inevitably jobless for 364 days of the non-leap year and oh no! the 365th day is not my birthday! It’s just a random day on which I feel like working :) ), I don’t see the beautiful lotus-encased temple that peaks right up to it. I don’t see the unique mischiefs the brilliant boys come up with in the garden. Sad, in a sense. It would’ve reminded me of my younger days; those chaos-triggering, window-smashing football and dodge-ball sessions, spectacle-splintering appa rappi with a tennis ball, those bashes, climbing trees, stealing tamarind, playing cards all night long....and I used to be the Queen of Challenge!( For those of you who're unaware (sod you!), it's a card game where people play their cards wrong-side up with a declaration and you can challenge their cards' worth upon your discretion. And the guy who loses all his cards first wins! ) I could stack six cards beneath my topmost one and pass it off as ONE card! And I would do it again and again and again! And no one's got wind of it till now. :D *sigh* I don’t see corduroys, I’m hard put noticing Mercs [yes, the ones which have Benz for a last name] making inexplicable appearances in our humble society; in fact, I once shooed a rare cormorant off our sill, mistaking it to be a common sparrow, and I still had the blessed notion till my bro next-room came bawling his head off that he was just trying to keep the creature still enough to take a pic, when yours truly, in all kindness, frightened it out of its feathers. So much for his bird dropping. Errr, watching. ;)
What I notice, instead, are only memories. An avalanche of them. Each one leads to another, and I have absolutely no idea as to where I might’ve landed within the next 15 minutes! I might be in my fifth grade, whispering frantically into tanny’s ears in english class, for all I know. :D
Fascinating how a window for looking out into the world inevitably turned into a window for looking inside myself. Countless are the times I recollect standing there, contemplating on lost times, on future prospects, on pre-examination blues, on impending assignments and intricate (the-ones-i-know-are-materialisable-only-in-the-wildest-of-my-dreams sort of) plans on how to deal with them; on friends, and friendship, and the rough crew that it tows on deck! With amazing delicacy. Those grills know the clutch of my nails when I'm angry; the continuous string of punches and my own inevitable retaliatory 'ow's when I'm vehement; the washing silence of solemnity when I'm trying to indulge in crude astronomy; the warmth of my tears when I'm totally down; the caress, the tenderness of a kiss when I'm oh-so-happy; the tragedy of supporting my weight when I'm exultant and completely over-excited and out of control. So much so, that I just can't help smiling fondly at the window when I pass by it. It feels more than a framework of metal. More..alive.
Countless are the conversations I’ve had with God, with nothing in between him and myself but the iron bars of my window. Pouring my heart out to that paramount helper and sympathizer, raving and raging, whining, apologizing, promising, wishing earnestly, asking for just-one-more-time opportunities, but ultimately, being immensely grateful that I am NOT an atheist. That I have such a being (whether or not for real, doesn’t matter) with whom I can behave any damn which way I want. It's not as much the existence, as the belief, and the faith, that fuels things.
And rain assists going down memory lane. Gives it concomitance. There’s no smell so sweet and rejuvenating as the one that rises from wet, raw mud! The essence of life when the soft pitter-patter of water soaks the parched earth. The mien of water gradually seeping through the loam, as it drinks it up thirstily, as the dried-up cracks fill up and coalesce; as the plants, fresh and green from the first rains, sway jubilantly, rebelliously. As the earth celebrates. As life begets life.
For some reason, or for no reason at all, it talks of freedom, and happiness, of a sudden spurt of unexpectant generosity; of contentment, emanating within and without, and a thrill of joy, of a whole new reason to live! And most inviting of all, memories. Just like soulful music. If your eyes and ears lead you down memory lane, your smell and touch lead you down more so, but with the realization, the cognizance, that you are fortunate enough to be passing through your memories, to be reliving them, not once, not twice, but as many times as you wish to!
Isn’t the ability God-given?!!
My mum begs to differ. She says that wallowing in the past isn’t worth it. Ruffling up old memories, spending hours of precious time ruminating on them, bursting your head open upon how life would’ve been if I’d done a particular thing in a particular different way, and stuff is goose-stuff. Only losers do it. Those who can’t, and don’t know how to move on, those who are miserably stuck in the quagmire of their past and do not wish to rise out of it. And naturally, she’s always on a lookout to tell me off whenever she catches me anywhere within a metre of the window, with a glazed look in my eyes and an out-of-the-context expression on my face. :l
Actually, I’ve sincerely tried putting myself in two minds about the point in question, in an attempt to do full justice to my mum’s point of view, but I’ve never quite even sustained the argument, let alone overcome my own self! I mean, however demoralizing they might be, what would a human be without his memories?? Every person has moments in life that he cherishes. Moments so purifyingly delightful and fulfilling that he just wants them be. Forever. No one has had sadness and failure at every point of life. Sure, NO ONE. Even the saddest, most depressed person in the world, (if you are close enough, and if you appear interested enough,) would tell you the most lovely moments of his life. Probably with that long-lost, hungry look in his eyes.
And that’s what makes memories worth it.
Wallowing in self-pity and losing confidence due to old remembrances doesn’t do. Deriving courage from them, from the very fact that you are strong enough to pass through the leanest phases of your life unscathed, and moving on, does. After all, memories are, inadvertently, a mark of your existence. Evidence of your very being. Your life. Your history.
They are cunningly double-edged though. Make sure that, if, ever, they blow you off your feet, into the past, it is only and only for strengthening your foothold in the present!
As for me, I still keep on discovering newer faces to reflection! [bad pun, I know!] And if anyone has any qualms, to them: Cogito ergo sum! :P
Oh, and actually, I just cannot keep from grinning broadly (whooping, to be more precise :D ) now that dad’s scrapped his grand plans of amplifying the drawing room by bringing down the wall separating it from the balcony, and full credits go to some fictitious (purely rumour-spread) blessed leakages that it might invoke in the plumbing!
I still have my window, all to myself !!! :) :) :)
P.S.: Forgive me, mum.