“Darn the wheel of the world! Why must it continually turn over? Where is the reverse gear?”
Said Jack London, American short story writer and novelist, and i concur. If only dealing with life was like driving a car. You could reverse, slow down, look out of the glass, or at least honk when frustrated...!
I'm not sure if its a good idea to start writing on a nostalgic note, but its nothing else but nostalgic i feel, as i sit here gazing at the blue and white Bangalore sky, cloudy and breezy, mild sunlight peeping through every once in a while. And it only gets more arduous to fathom what hits me harder, joy or sorrow. The joy of being here, in Bangalore, living in this moment right now. Or sorrow of cognizance of the fact that im not here for long, and i cannot savour the joy of this for long enough. That what was so entirely mine, my city, my own home, isnt mine anymore. i'm just a guest here.
Getting married certainly changes a lot, and most definitely ur home. Like the very cliched hindi word goes...'paraaye'!
The fondest of my memories in Bangalore go back to the days i spent in AOL. My workplace. The office of America Online in ITPL Bangalore, was all i could ask for then. And through my tenure of 3 years, there wasnt one day i regreted being there. Being a callcentre, i spent my late night breaks at times like 2 and 3 in the morning taking solemnly walks through ITPL like it were my own backyard.
The day i accepted my relieving letter and submitted my Oh so dear badge, that made me an ITPL'er, i felt like i lost a part of me. As i looked back teary eyed at the gleaming explorer block, i promised myself that i would come back visit here as soon as i came down to Bangalore next time.
And a couple of days ago, it was time to keep my promise.
A look at ITPL from outside the gate, and it all came back ! Rushing came a million memories, welling up inside me. The joy was ecstatic, but shortlived. It was time to flash an ID proof and obtain a visitors pass. The thought of entering ITPL with a visitors pass, broke something inside me. Neverthless, in i went.
The Ice Cream shop called Polar Bear, and their Hot Chocolate Fudge, The evenings in the tranquill and serene Barista and the noisy mall square, it was all there. The imitation waterfall in the corner of the mall square had its familiar music. The KFC, Pizza Hut and Coffee Day where half of my salary went, and the Citibank ATM, where it all came from. Oh my gosh it was all there.
There were times when i soaked in the drizzle and entered office to freeze under the ac, and yet, topped it up with an ice cream. There were times when i almost missed my cab back home cuz i was too busy clicking pictures of the sunrise from the 8th floor. Oh, the cabs ! The cab to work, the cab home. They were the best part of the day.Annie, Viji, Paul, Zia, Rosh, George... i made more friends in the cab than in my team. When the whole of bangalore fussed about traffic, we nightbirds had the entire road to ourselves ! The wind through our hair, the silent alleys, the bumps of udaynagar and the sound of 'Mungaaru Malaye' on the radio. Songs i didnt understand a single word of, yet loved listening to.
Yes there was work to do. There were calls, back to back, There were hours of ranting american callers. There were mugs of coffee and cans of redbulls to keep awake. There were targets and numbers, sales and MSI, performance and metrics, late hours and meetings. And yet, the moment you pushed the logout button on Avaya, the world was a rosy place again.
i feel sad, that i had to leave this life. But im happy that it happened. Im happy that i lived every moment of it and defied the golden rule of "you know not what you have until you've lost it." i knew what i had, when i had it. I breathed every wind, breeze and storm of it, and it still perfumes my memories.