the uninteresting.

I climbed up to the terrace again this evening. I could say that I did it to see the sunset- which is spectacular by the way. But really I did it to wallow in misery.

Not that I'm particularly miserable at the moment. But I feel it's good to wallow now and then just for practice. So you'll know how to cope with the real deal when it comes along. Which it will.

I managed to find things to be miserable about anyway. I'm good at that. I sat there for a while and then went to find Mawii because it's no fun being miserable on your own. Unless you complain about it to someone, the flavour is lost.

So Mawii and I sat there on the terrace and I started telling her my problems. She knows most of them already, poor girl, but I figured a refresher course would be good since we hadn't seen each other over the weekend. There was one big problem she hadn't been updated on though and by the time I finished telling her, she was howling with laughter. Good to know I bring joy into her life.

I really don't know what this post is supposed to be about. Nothing in particular. I'm typing almost automatically. I'm a little worried actually, because I think I have insomnia. I've slept about five hours since Friday. It's almost midnight now and I'm still not tired.

I am bored though. Going to go find something to occupy myself with. I know what it is but I can't say because I will be laughed off the face of this planet.

Although sometimes I think that might not be such a bad thing.


The Pigeon.

Vikram's pigeon is dead. It died a long time ago. Months ago.

But due to an earlier blog post, I feel I should pay it tribute.

Rest in peace, Pigeon. And I'm sorry I took so long to give you a public send off. In my defence, it is due to me that you're immortalised forever.

In your defence, it's the least you deserve.


I have a 3000 word assignment to write about realism as used in Amitav Ghosh's The Shadow Lines and I don't know where to begin. The introduction was written with much labour, and the thesis statement was introduced so on the bright side, I have only 2900 words left to write.

The trouble is I have no clue what to write about.

This sucks. I thought no one worked in college. I thought I'd be spending my time talking about realism, lying on the green lawns of Stephens, with smoke rings swirling above my head. I did not picture myself slaving away at the computer, writing three thousand words about the damn thing for my eccentric Bengali science fiction loving professor.

Next week, I have two more assignments due. One is something to do with Browning and the dramatic monologue- I think- and I know she gave us a reading list for it that's about a mile long. I have no clue what the other assignment is about. I only know I have one, because the feeling of dread in my stomach isn't light enough for only one assignment.

Right now, I'm trying to figure out how to explain Amitav Ghosh's use of the stream of consciousness technique in a thousand words. Enough for one paragraph. It is, you see, a stylistic feature of the modernist realist technique. Ghosh expresses it through the constant back and forth shifts in time throughout the novel. That's all I've got.

Oh man. I'm too dumb for college. Everyone else seems to know everything about everything. You should see some of them in tutorials. They're all arguing with each other, using words I've never even bloody heard of. I really need to stop reading Janet Evanovitch and move on to something a little more intellectually stimulating. Maybe that'll help.

All I want to do right now is curl up with a book and a bar of chocolate. Well, to be honest, with an Asterix comic and three bars of chocolate. Snickers. Mmm. A rost beef sandwich dripping with butter wouldn't go amiss either.

Which brings me to another grievance. Beef. I swear to god, I will never take that meat for granted again. When I go back home, I will stuff myself with Bouchi's roast beef and steak and meatloaf and corned beef and scotch egg. I'm wasting away on this bloody vegetarian food. The only red meat you get in Delhi is mutton and by a strange twist of fate, mutton is the only meat I steer cleer off. One, because I don't like the taste and two, because I'm partial to goats. I think it's a Heidi thing left over from my childhood. There's chicken occasionally but I only ever see it in a McDonald's burger and since I'm on a limited budget, I refuse to waste my money on that trash. The chicken I get everywhere else, is the on-the-bone kind, which I can't eat because eating anything attached to a bone freaks me out.

Oh beef, I miss you.

I'm talking to a friend on Skype and describing what I want my wedding to be like. I don't ever want to get married but I like the idea of a wedding.

Jahnavi got it right when she said she wanted to be married in a simple temple. I take it a step furthur. I want to be married in a temple- an open temple with pillars and no walls- on a cliff overlooking the sea. During the monsoon. There has to be a fire with a priest chanting in Sanskrit. The sky- dark and overcast with a howling wind. But maybe, just maybe, as I step out of the temple, a ray of gentle sunshine could fall on me. My friend asked where the groom comes in. I forgot about him. He could be a problem. Oh well.

Anyway, it's 8.08 PM and the assignment's due in twelve hours and I'm already beginning to think up brilliant excuses for not handing it in. It's never a good sign when I do that.

I should go.





Man Whores.

Men, I've realised, work like this:

Man 1: Fuck. She's hot.

Man 2: Yeah dude.

Man: 1. I think I want to bang her.

Man 2: Go for it, dude.

Three days later.

Man 2: So?

Man 1: She's hot, dude. But what a slut.

Man 2: At least she's not like (insert girl name). I've been trying to bang that bitch for a month now. No luck. Stupid frigging ice queen.

Okay, maybe not all men. But the majority.

That's Man Whore Type 1.

Man Whore Type 2 is more subtle. Not as despicable. Often a nice person. But still a Man Whore.

Man: I was on a plane.

Friend: Uh-huh.

Man: There was a beautiful girl sitting next to me.

Friend: Uh-huh.

Man: When I say beautiful, I mean beautiful. And she was intelligent. We talked about stuff.

Friend: Uh-huh.

Man: And then we made out. And then we went to the bathroom and...

Friend: What was her name?

Man: *pause*

Friend: Well?

Man: I could lie to you and say I know, but that was part of the beauty. You know... the smoothness of things.

And finally, there's Man Whore Type 3.

Man: *while making out with girl* You kiss so much better than So-and-so.

Girl: Uh.

Man: Seriously. You're gifted. And you're good in bed too. Much better than any of the other people I slept with last week.

Girl: *leaves*

Man: Did I say something wrong?

I asked a friend of mine once- he happens to be an original MCP- why it's okay for men to be whores while women are condemned for sleeping around. He thought for a moment.

"It's because we're men," he said. "It's a manly thing to do,"

I replied that that wasn't a good enough answer.

"It's evolution. Men used to go out and hunt and impregnate women to continue their lineage or whatever the term is. Women were supposed to just let themselves be impregnated and stay at home and cook."

"So there you go. Women used to get a lot of action too. Why is it such a big problem now?"

"They don't fucking cook anymore."



coordination. lack of it.

In the past twenty minutes, I've managed to break a candle stand and a plate as well as a bottle of deodrant, torn a kaftan and spilled water all over a carpet which I think is now ruined.

I think I need help. And fast.


I want to write but I have nothing to write about.


I'm feeling hot and sweaty and tired and bored. Tried reading, mind's not on it. Fooled around with some online quizzes before I felt disgusted with myself and gave up. Would eat but there's no food available for another two hours. I could walk down to the Exchange Store (only a twelve minute walk) but I have no money because I still haven't opened my bank account.

I should go have a shower.

Oh wait. I can't have a shower because the bathrooms here don't have shower heads. And they don't have bathtubs either. Just taps.

I should go have a bath with a bucket. A bucket bath.

And if I don't switch the lights on, I won't even see the lizards.

But I have to cross the terrace to get to the bathroom. Too much effort. And it'd mean scrounging for my soap, shampoo, facewash, toothpaste and toothbrush and putting them in my wash basket, along with my towel (which, let's face it, isn't too clean). Again. Too much effort.

I could watch television. Television's good. Except since I share this place with twenty other girls, most of whom are twice my size, it's already occupied and wrestling for the remote doesn't really seem like a good idea.

I could go out with some friends. Except I don't have any here except Mawii who's asleep with her mouth open. Anyway, even if I did have friends, I wouldn't be able to go out with them because this is Delhi and we'd all probably get raped.


I could wash my sheets, change my pillow cases and iron my clothes. Not to mention scrub the floor because if you walk on it without your slippers, your feet go black. This is because the lady who comes in to clean is old and knows she's old and takes full advantage of it.

I could study or work on the script. But I've lost my glasses and I've been wearing my contact lenses so long, I think my eyeballs are dancing inside my head. I can't do anything about it though because I don't have an optometrist and even if I did, I don't have the money to go to one.

So really I think I'm just going to lie here, in the heat, and get bitten by mosquitos since I've run out of mosquito repellant.

I sincerely hope that anyone who is sitting in the comfort of their own home and reading this, is feeling suitably ashamed of themselves.


Dear Jahnavi.

Promise kept:
[8/14/2009 1:29:45 PM] sunrise: i'm just jealous.
[8/14/2009 1:29:58 PM] Trisha Dutt: want me to write one about u?
[8/14/2009 1:30:05 PM] sunrise: :)
[8/14/2009 1:30:13 PM] Trisha Dutt: I WILL!
[8/14/2009 1:30:30 PM] sunrise: (happy)
[8/14/2009 1:30:31 PM] Trisha Dutt: yaay. i always love writing things to you/about you- like the orkut and hi5 testimonials.
[8/14/2009 1:30:35 PM] sunrise: (nods)
[8/14/2009 1:30:36 PM] Trisha Dutt: because there's always so much to write.
[8/14/2009 1:30:42 PM] sunrise: :O
[8/14/2009 1:30:46 PM] sunrise: sunrise is very flattered.
[8/14/2009 4:26:47 PM] sunrise: did you write a blog post about me yet huh huh?

When you asked me to write this for you, I thought it would be incredibly easy. Easy because I've known you for so long- so long that I don't remember a time when I haven't known you. But I've been sitting here for the past ten minutes now and for the first time, I can't think of something to say. Because there's so much to be said? Such an old, old problem.

I don't have a first memory of you. Nowhere to start. I'm thinking about you as a little girl and for once, I'm not being able to see things in words or paragraphs. Only pictures- snapshots flying through the air, allowing me glimpses here and there. Ahh, my mind whispers in remembrance, and the moment is gone, replaced by another.
What do I see?
Jahnavi running around Pixie Mashi's garden, wanting to build a bonfire.
Jahnavi whispering something into Tara's ear.
Jahnavi pinching Varun, because he double dipped his chips into the tomato sauce.
Jahnavi sitting on the CCFC cannon, flying to the moon.
Jahnavi laughing, because she's happy.
Jahnavi running away from an invisible Lettuce Ham.

And then slowly, so slowly I almost miss the change, you start growing older.

Jahnavi wearing lipgloss, and me envious because I'm not allowed to yet.
Jahnavi reading Danielle's death with tarot cards, wide eyed and believing what they say.
Jahnavi swimming Butterfly, faster and faster because Farhad is watching- or so she hopes.
Jahnavi crying, because Adito said something mean to her.
Jahnavi starving her Neopets.
Jahnavi shouting, because she is Jahnavi.
Jahnavi making fun of me for wearing a skirt, and turning up in a shorter one the next day.

And now, as they keep switching around, great switcheroos in the making, I see you and I am amazed because you are so different, and yet, still the same.

Jahnavi daring me to break into the house of the Seventh Floor People.
Jahnavi bringing Sims 2 over to my house, and the two of us squealing in delight.
Jahnavi showing me how to put a (youknowwhat) on my (youknowwhat).
Jahnavi cycling, while I hold onto the cycle and rollerblade after her.
Jahnavi sitting in my room, talking about music and Wrik and Egypt.
Jahnavi squeezing my arm until she draws blood, while I stick a needle into her ear, and laughing once she sees the little stud shining there.

And now you're a teenager and so am I and suddenly it's the moment we've been waiting for all our lives.

Jahnavi with Sidharth Pradhan's arm around her.
Jahnavi holding my hair back while I throw up my first ever vodka shots.
Jahnavi stealing my clothes.
Jahnavi telling Siddharth Sharma to look at the moon, hoping he's going to kiss her.
Jahnavi holding me while I cry about Ringo.
Jahnavi sitting next to me in Oly, downing beers with me.
Jahnavi sitting outside Mama Mia, not telling me what's wrong with her life.
Jahnavi crying, with tears I believed were false.
Jahnavi hugging me quickly as she sets off on a new journey and I stay where I am.

And so you went to where the sun rises and it rose for you there and I stayed behind, believing the album had run out of pages. And I think we were both happy- you, discovering the new, and me, content in the warmth of the familiar.

But you see, I've realised that some albums have pages that go on forever and ever and ever. And when you came back this summer, it re-opened itself again, and photograph threw itself on photograph.

Jahnavi sitting with me at Someplace Else- the first time the two of us have ever ventured there alone without the boys.
Jahnavi smirking at me because she sees something in my mind that I've been trying desperately to hide from everyone else.
Jahnavi sitting in Mangio, laughing at me as I slowly put a finger down while playing Never Have I Ever.
Jahnavi sprawled on my bed, eating mango ice cream.
Jahnavi lying on my terrace with me, both of us believing we're magic.
Jahnavi shrieking, as I tell her a secret that pales in comparision to all other secrets.
Jahnavi watching me, this time as I set out on my journey.
Jahnavi with earphones on, as the ugly golden bus trundles along the highway to Jaipur.
Jahnavi in green silk, shouting at her mother.
Jahnavi saying goodbye, again, and walking down the road as I get into an auto and go the other way.
There are so many more memories I want to describe and so many more things I want to say about you. But sometimes, and this is one of those times, you have to sit back and let the pictures do the talking. With us, and I believe this with all my heart, they'll talk forever- whether we like it or not.



You were the one who showed me Venus.

I remember standing with you on the verandah, under a starry sky in Spain and you were crouching down by me and you pointed to the brightest, whitest star and told me that whenever I was good, that star would shine for me.

But what if I'm bad, I asked you.

I don't remember your answer to that one. I was two and a half years old, I think. But I do know that since that night, every time I look at the night sky, it's always Venus- that bright, white star- I look for. Even now at eighteen.

I remember hearing stories about the War from Daddy. He told me about the time you shot the young German pilot out of the sky. I used to watch you sometimes and try and imagine you doing that, flying a plane high in the sky under the shimmering sun. You talked to me about many things that happened to you when you were young, but you never once talked to me about the War. And I never asked. And it felt like we had a secret bond, a secret pact. But when we did the Battle of Briton in school, whenever I read that quote of Churchill's- "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few"- I felt so incredibly proud.

I remember the last time I visited you in Spain. I was twelve and Mama was with me. I remember sitting in that cafe overlooking the sea and you were so amazed because I couldn't take my eyes away from it. Is that how you felt about the sky? Like you belonged there? Maybe that's why you understood why I needed to leave the cafe and climb down to the rocks and feel the spray of the waves on my face.

I remember dragging myself away from Proiti Mashi's movies to go down and talk to you for a while. I always intended to stay for five minutes or so, but then you'd start telling me stories about Kashmir and Nehru and Manekshaw and from there we'd start talking about communism and religion and politics and you always made me feel so incredibly grown up and intelligent.

I wish I'd spent more time with you now. I wish I'd asked you more things. You always had so much to give but I never really reached out for it. But I loved you.

And every time I look at Venus shining in the sky, you will be in my heart.


The Library.

I discovered the college library today.

It's always been there of course- tucked away on one side of one of the many broad pillared corridors that look out onto the grass and the wind and the hot sun.

But I've only ever seen it from the outside, looking in through unfriendly doors at the must and the dampness and the bare wooden tables and harsh tubelights.

But I went inside for the first time today- not to browse through bookshelves but to use the internet.

And it's really quite beautiful if you take the time to notice it properly.

The furniture is uncompromising solid wood- but the wood is smooth and cold and dark and you can feel the students it has held over the years, all looking alike with dark heads, bowed together over old books, thinking thoughts that are both similar and unique.

The bookshelves are lined up in straight rows and if you wander in between them, you'll probably sneeze. They hold, like all bookshelves should, the musty smell of books that have been well thumbed.

And my god- the books! I only browsed through the history section and it held volumes and volumes about dysfunctional royalty and bloody wars and great, wise movements and great, wise people and ordinary people who woke up and decided to change the world.

And I thought of visiting the library when I had nothing to do and I imagined wandering over to one of the shelves, upstairs and downstairs, and breathing in that curious smell and choosing one of the leather bound books and ambling over to one of the long, broad wooden tables and sitting there, away from noise and away from sun. And I felt curiously happy.

The quiet, satisfied sort of happiness that you feel when you put forward a tiny soul root into new land.


glimpses of sun.

I have a creature- a really tall, blonde creature- in my life called the Annoying One. The Annoying One is known as A.O. for short.

A.O. is someone I'm very fond of. In fact, there is also quite a lot of love involved. I try not to let him see how much he actually means to me though, because I'd never hear the end of it. My insults would lose some of their sharpness and he'd never quite believe them again.

A.O. has, for the past several weeks, been travelling around the world. He made a stopover in Delhi for two days and since he's not aware of this blog's existence, and since most of my readers are convinced I'm suicidal and I believe I should try reassuring them, I'd like to say here and now, that they were a very happy two days. Golden.

A.O.'s gone now and in some ways it's worse, because I feel more alone than I did before. But I realised something very important.

You can't be happy all the time. Experiences don't have to be positive all the time. I shall not launch into a tirade about how misery emotionally strengthens you, because that's never worked for me. I've always drawn my strength from happiness.

All I know is, being with A.O. reminded me of things I'd forgotten. How important laughter is. And ice cream- the chocolate kind with the bits of brownie in it. Teasing and mindless television and long talks and big hugs and Long Island Iced Teas and the wind in your face and an incredibly bad joke and laughter all over again. Those are things I haven't experienced in a long time, and those are the things that really matter.

I found a bit of soul in Delhi, when I was travelling around in autos with him. It is there. I just need to look for it harder.

I'm not saying that my misery (and let's face it- I've always enjoyed being a miserable person) has disappeared yet. It hasn't even grown paler. But every road has patches of darkness. And right now I may be stumbling around, feeling alone and lost and helpless, and maybe I don't know why I'm still walking or even if I want to. But I do know that the sun is going to peep out now and then and when that happens, I shall cling to the warmth and carry it with me- a talisman.

Because, I hate to say it, but the world doesn't really let you be all that completely miserable all the time. It will show you its softness occasionally and it will show you cold rain after dusty winds.

I'm still not happy and I don't know if I'm going to be happy any time soon but I remember what happiness feels like now. I'll bide my time till it creeps up on me again.

There's a verse from somewhere that goes like this:

Look to this day:
For it is life, the very life of life.
In its brief course
Lie all the verities and realities of your existence.
The bliss of growth,
The glory of action,
The splendour of achievement
Are but experiences of time.

For yesterday is but a dream
And tomorrow is only a vision;
And today well-lived, makes
Yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well therefore to this day;
Such is the salutation to the dawn!

It's good advice.


Still not happy, but I need to write.

I think I'm losing touch with myself. In the past three weeks, I've lost a lot of things that were really important to me. And now, I'm just kind of existing. Floating.

Waking up, going to college, coming home, sleeping, eating dinner, sleeping again. That's my life. Or at least, that's how it feels.

I guess I'm disillusioned because I thought coming to Delhi would wake me up. But it hasn't. It's deadened me.

I miss everything about Calcutta. I miss the smell of the rain and the broken pavements and the tea and Graphiti on Sunday mornings. I miss the the plants on the terrace- especially Pokey- and I miss the eagles that sleep on the paraphet come sundown. I miss playing Dota and CounterStrike at the gaming place, I miss the egg rolls at the Dhaba, I miss warm and slow sunshine days at the Tolly. I miss my mother.

I want to go back more than anything. I don't belong in Delhi. And it's all very well to say everyone has to leave home sometime, but shouldn't you go somewhere where there's soul? Delhi has no soul. I see glimpses of it sometimes though, in the broad tree lined streets and in the red stone of old homes and the freshness in the sky. But it's always snatched away somehow and hidden behind the mindless sweaty faces and the ugly yellow concrete because it's not supposed to exist.

Or maybe it's not Delhi. Maybe it's me.

I always read somewhere that happiness is supposed to be an intrinsic thing. I haven't felt happy for a very long time. I have my good moments- moments where I'm just gloriously glad to be alive. But otherwise, there's this constant dull ache which sometimes drifts into numbness.

Will try to be more chirpy next time.