Ways to Tell a Story

There are different ways to tell a story. Any story, but they all depend on the audience. Your language, flair, eloquence count for nothing, if the listener doesn’t care.

You can’t tell, quite honestly, how everything works. Or why something clicks while another doesn’t. You can, however, gauge a response, and tailor the way you tell your story.



Friendships must be like muscle memory. Like cycling or swimming.

In a few hundred words, the years of silence are wiped out memories of displeasure, discomfort forgotten. Laughter is just as easy and conversation flows.

Slipping into old roles, picking up threads that were forgotten, but the same patterns emerge.

Memories of displeasure, discomfort are easily forgotten.  Silences and lost stories don’t count anymore.

It isn’t new, it isn’t fresh. It’s familiar.  It makes annoying old friends rather easy.

Growing Up

Growing is subtle.

It’s about being independent. It’s about taking distances in your stride. It demands that you be brave.

Growing up is about enjoying your here and now, even as you reminiscence.

Growing up is allowing yourself to make new friends, and rediscover old ones.

Growing up is generosity of time, thoughts, and actions.

To grow up is to be grateful, thoughtful, and kind. It is to laugh more often and to be more sensitive. It is to write more, to listen to more music, to read more.

Growing up is accepting a few things: You have to exercise and watch what you eat if you want to lose weight. The being pragmatic is always better than a rash decision. And most importantly to admit that you miss your parents, aunts, brothers, Pumpkin, Kanu, your friends on special days. It is knowing that you carry them in your heart and that despite distances and time differences, they are with you.

Dahi Wada

A conversation takes me back to six years ago. Another little room, another tiny kitchen. Another programme that was very demanding. A different set of essays but the same pressure. The wonder of finding new things, of seeing the world with fresh eyes, the possibility of an adventure. And in the midst of this, the memory of a dahi wada, made six years ago is stirred. An impromptu party, goodies made with love and jugaad.

So many ways to feel far away, so many things to crave, so many memories for comfort. So many reasons to miss you.


Beginnings and Ends

It’s not always black and white, nor is it ever happy and sad. We can’t say beginnings are always a good thing, or the end is always sad. Sometimes, like today, they overlap. New Year’s Day (in many parts of India) coincides with the last teaching class of my Master’s programme in Edinburgh, stirring conflicting feelings.

The ‘hellos’ will soon be goodbyes

The new will become a memory

This city won’t be my home anymore.

The adventure will continue.

The joy of a festival, the melancholia of a finish.

Lunch in the Park

It’s the small things that make you smile.

A quick exchange of messages with a loved one. A chance encounter with someone you admire. A book that you didn’t know you needed, a song that is just right for you. A seat near both the window and the radiator, but out of the sun’s glare.

A friend to giggle with.

A friend to share your misery.

A friend to go to the park with, on a sunny day and eat a lovely wood-fired oven pizza.

It’s always the small things that make you smile.

Is it true that the older you grow, the more you hold on to the memories of the past? To songs, people, food, books? To places?

Is there something about rushing headlong into the future that makes you want to sit down and immerse yourself in the past?

Do you want to stop working on pressing deadlines and seek music from nearly 25 years ago?

Do you mourn the loss of friends, family, simpler times?

What is it about facing the thirties that make you want to be 8, at Pirwadi, listening to Shahid Pervez again?