I write so I can breathe. I am constantly evolving, mindless at times, frustrating even perhaps but heck, I wouldn't change the smell of freedom that comes with writing.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

From Fourteen to Fifteen

Limitless possibilities is what every single day holds for us. In the transition from the year that was to the year that will be...here are things you could tap onto:

Dare a little more. Live a little more. Heck, live it up!

Smile a little more, show off your dimples. If you have no dimples, show how a smile without a dimple is just as good.

Step out of your comfort zone. It may feel a little slippery and unsure but there is a world of possibilities you have not explored yet that awaits you to indulge in.

Try to peel off the masks you don for those around you. Without make-up, you are beautiful and your soul and heart gets to show off.

Dance and feel the flow of music in your soul. You will realize the only music you need to dance thereafter is the one composed by your soul.

Open the windows and look at your darkness within. There are wounds there you have hidden away but they also make you who you are today as much as your successes.

Share your joy. Happiness of a forever kind is overrated. Joy in your heart of little moments that light up your eyes because they glow from within is worth a lot more than you give it value for.

Forgive yourself. There is a piece of divinity that exists inside you. Rid yourself of guilt and make that forgiveness complete by honoring yourself. 

Sigh if you want to. There are moments when you need to just be. Take it as it comes and it won't sound half as bad.

Love like you are loving for the first time. Fill it with wonder and the sweetness of the little bouts of butterflies that come to visit your stomach. Flip your heart for someone like that, even if it has happened before with someone else.

Appreciate all who touch your life in every way. You are changed as you you never were because of them. They have a purpose in your life even if you haven't yet had it figured out or probably never will.

Live passionately as much as you can. This life is your gift to you and there is just this life. 

Be YOU!

- Sandy



Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Exit Point and My Journey



My association with Anil goes way back to 2005 when I first began blogging on Rediffiland. I was addicted to blogging, had a lot of time in my hands well. He used to call me ‘Chief’ (yes, I remember). I was truly excited when in June 2007 he told me his book was on the way to print and will hit the stands possibly by 2008. It has been such an amazing journey from ‘xanadu_diary’ and I have felt really good reading Exit Point. 

This review is for Anil, for Exit point and it is a fitting day because it is his birthday today. I am grateful to have found Exit Point in my hands to read when I needed a few answers and somehow, because I believe books come to you when you need them the most, I found Exit Point. I gifted two copies of it and I have one with me. 

When I finished reading Exit Point, I wanted to hug Anil and I told him so (that is pending until I meet him). It made that significant a difference in my life. I met a friend, or rather, made a new one who explained to me what artificial intelligence was all about. I didn’t quite get it. I am technologically challenged beyond a certain point and scientifically very challenged. When I finished the book, I had a good bit of that figured out. I had watched Interstellar two weeks before and that was fresh in my mind. 

I am not a technologist by any measure but all the thoughts I had been thinking, conversations I had had about divinity, the energy that is within us and that surrounds us, my journey of self-discovery gained a greater degree of clarity. The fight was between intelligence and emotions; mind over heart, or rather soul. My experiences manifest my thought processes yes, but my emotions, that come from a soul that has free will needed validation. I finally figured why women are stronger and why people are afraid to empower them. Strength and empowerment for women is different. Stronger. The most empowering thing in a woman is that she manifests both intelligence and emotions. That expanse is infinite. My question is, is that what a man is afraid of the most, that a woman, if empowered, will reach a point (as in Interstellar) where to start an entire race, she will not need the existing human race to survive anymore?

Exit Point has explored these possibilities and what Anil did convey in his book makes me wonder at the possibilities. He could be right. And if he is, we have a world that is spinning out of our sphere of control even as I express my views and thoughts here, on digital expressway, where everything and everyone is linked, connected, beyond what one can normally fathom. Exit Point made sense to me. That is a big deal, considering I am (yes, I repeat again) not inclined to understand too much of technology and science.

What I know is, I am headed right in my journey. The journey I am taking inside is reaffirmed by a surprise book that made sense to me on all levels (even with my limited faculty). My journey (one of the many simultaneous ones I am taking) is not technical but I like the fact that in a different dimension, the understanding and the journey is similar. For some people intelligence dominates, for some like me, emotions do but I know the path is, at some point going to blend. Intelligence versus emotion. Eventually there is a converging Exit Point. For both.

Happy Birthday Anil. I wish your journey to be full of possibilities. Thank you for making a difference. 

- Sandy@2014

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Now I have to continue the Inspiration

I am humbled and grateful to  Jay Shah who has found my blog worthy of being gifted this honour of being awarded
and I am quite speechless about it. I am grateful to see that my writings inspires people in some manner or the other. Thank you for that. I now have to continue the inspiration and that is a daunting task.

If I am to go by the indicative rules I have to carry this torch and do a few things.
1. Mention seven things about myself
2. Nominate fifteen more people who are making a difference with their blogs.

So, here I go...

Seven things...I can think seven hundred things (maybe more really) but here are the seven.

One
I am a fluid ever-evolving person and I have no shame in changing my mind as and when things come to me and I understand and see things in a different light.

Two
I have a bucket list of things that are in as constant state of evolving as I am, so essentially, my passions are interlinked to my soul and my life.

Three
I look for the upside in whatever comes my way and live in the now. I believe yesterday to be memories and tomorrow to be dreams. I possess 'now' and me.

Four
I have no sense of music but I like music and prefer to focus on the piece than who created it or sang it etc. Same is for dance...two left feet but I will dance and karaoke and have a great time with it all.

Five
My chosen family of friends are my most cherished apart from my daughter, my son and my dog.

Six
I believe in soul-mates and I know I have one who is out there and will complete me. I can always fall down but I will not break to the point of no return. I refuse to give up on myself.

Seven
I have no religion I really subscribe to except the goodness that resides in every human being, no matter what. I believe there is a piece of the divinity that exists in each of us and forgiveness is never complete unless we forgive ourselves as well.

Now to nominate the fifteen. It's a tough task. I learn so much from so many.

1.The Diary of An Artist
2. Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve
3. Aspdires
4. Arp@nam
5. thoughtdrops
6. Varsha Agnihotri
7. Inner Workings of an (in)sane Mind
8. Diction Addiction
9. fashioned of dreams
10. Whispers
11. Windmills of My Mind
12. Midnight Ramblings
13. A Little of that in those commas,,,,
14. Discovering MYSELF
15. Van der Wrote

There we are. All done. Keep the word splurge on...!

Sandy

Friday, December 12, 2014

Lights Camera Action

The world of movies, a world that takes me to places I could never visit, lives I could never live, feelings I know exist but is difficult to express...my unreal real world. 

Here are some confessions: 
  • I cry at the drop of a hat.
  • I cannot stand violent movies of torture and sadist attitudes.
  • Horror movies for me is not entertainment.
  • I can watch some movies over and over again.

I stood this morning looking at the collection of my DVD's on the shelf and smiled. I sure knew which ones had stayed. 

Sholay - Undoubtedly a lifetime classic that I can never get over. I can watch it from anywhere and be as mesmerized as I was, way back in 1975. It was the first movie my parents took me to a movie hall to watch. What a fabulous way to begin a love affair with the movies. I never got over it, not Sholay. It reminds me of the cinema theatre (Eros) in Dimapur. I have lost count of the number of times I have watched it. I have not lost track of the dialogues. My tears still shamelessly flow when Amitabh dies at the end and I still get them goose bumps from that Amitabh-Jaya twilight scene.

The Sound of Music - Endearingly romantic and it is a joy to watch. The movie was drummed into every Josephite at school and it was not one of those we didn't like. We loved it. I found the movie to be a beautiful blend of love, romance, courage, inspiration and sigh...so many lessons. I want to visit Austria. I will. These dreams have been nurtured through my growing years and I so relate to the "I am Sixteen" and "Somewhere in my Youth or Childhood" and the heart-touching "Edelweiss". 

Life is Beautiful - If ever there was a movie that deserved all the awards that year, this was is. This film (even if the dubbing could have been better) made me hang on to every word, made me cry, smile and reverberates in me. I loved the eternal hope in it despite the worst of situation and the parent-child relationship of trust; the little boy's utter belief in his father's words and the father's brave positive outlook on life. Nope. Nothing matches this one on so many levels.

The Thin Red Line - In terms of music, one of the most amazing films I have watched. Not a single score is to be missed. Each one rendered me speechless and I stayed afloat every time I watch this film and every single time I close my eyes and listen to the music. Hans Zimmerman's master strokes are out of this world. Don't believe me? Go check these out. 

I Am - This National Award film by my friend and cousin and hundreds of people who made it happen s personal. The stories touched me because I could relate to them. Countless people have lived these lives, of Omar, Megha, Abhimanyu and Afia. Megha and Abhimanyu is especially important to me. I am a survivor. The connection is quite evident. This is my film too. I AM so fortunate to be a part of this. It won two National Awards - there was a reason for it. It never got commercial success plainly because it exposed what everyone wants to ignore or brush under the carpet. 

There are way more than this. Impacting my life are these movies, for various triggers they set off and these are my list of MUST WATCH!!! - 

Love and Romance
Sleepless in Seattle, Pretty Woman, Notting Hill, Begin Again, Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, Before Midnight,The Bodyguard (English), Lamhe, Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna, Jab We Met, Yeh Jawani Hain Diwani, Summer of 42, Chocolat, Titanic (Yes), The Scent of a Woman, The Notebook, 50 First Dates, Music and Lyrics, Gone With the Wind, Love Actually, Kal Ho Na Ho, Kagaz Ke Phool, Dil Se, Tum Bin, Guide, Guzaarish, Cheeni Kum, Kuch Kuch Hota Hain

Love of Life
Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Dil Chahta Hain, The Aviator, Fast and Furious (Tokyo Drift especially), Forrest Gump, Barfi, 

Inspirational/Provoking
Chak De,Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Schindler's List, Erin Brokovich, Philadelphia, Dead Poet's Society, Seven Years in Tibet, Ben Hur, My Brother Nikhil, Earth 1947, Fire, Pyaasa, I am Sam, Black Swan, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Taare Zameen Par, Swades, Do Bigha Zameen, Rang De Basanti, Queen, Guru, Paan Singh Tomar, Sarfarosh

Comic Delight
Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron, Andaaz Apna Apna, Chupke Chupke (old), Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, Half Ticket, Padosan, Angoor, Pushpak, Hera Pheri, Munna Bhai MBBS, Dhamaal, 3 Idiots, When Harry Met Sally, There's Something About Mary. The Truth About Cats and Dogs, American Pie, Modern Times, Home Alone, As Good As It Gets

The Military Kinds (because I am  Fauji, there is a list for this too!)
A Few Good Men, Topgun, GI Jane, Lakshya, Courage Under Fire, Broken Arrow, Pearl Harbour, Good Morning Vietnam, The Wind That Shakes the Barley, Cold Mountain,The Boy in the Striped Payjamas, Black Hawk Down, The English Patient, The Hurt Locker, Behind Enemy Lines, Tears of the Sun, Act of Valor, Men of Honor, Crimson Tide, Stealth, Rescue Dawn, An Officer and a Gentleman, Shaurya, Annapolis, Flight, The Hunt for Red October, Down Periscope, Executive Decision, The Caine Mutiny, Dhoop

Surreal and Real/Sci-Fi
Inception, Dances With Wolves, Vanilla Sky, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, A Beautiful Mind, Gravity, Interstellar, The Astronaut's Wife, Dreamcatcher, The Abyss, Sixth Sense, John Carter, Oblivion

Drama/Action/Thrillers
The Godfather, Bourne Series, Golden Eye, The Lincoln Lawyer, Training Day, Snatch, The Dark Knight, The Silence of the Lambs, Reservoir Dogs, The Departed, Pinjar, Lagaan, Daman, Don, Ghulam, Life in a Metro, OMG, Jolly LLB, Filhaal

New ones to watch out for - Chauranga and Shab MISS IT NOT!

Sigh...go watch them...all of them. 

Copyright Sandy@2014



Monday, December 8, 2014

Dumping Decisions

Top Post on IndiBlogger

I like the sound of beginning the year like that.  Let's get to the bottom line, of dumping and being dumped. I get dumped a lot and I dump too. 

#1. The Marriage Dump 
This year, at the beginning of the year, I got dumped. No, I got dumped emotionally months earlier than that but technically that happened in January. It is a moot point on who dumped who I suppose. I, who got emotionally dumped months prior to that decided to go ahead and dump a pointless relationship, get hurt and be better off alone. If someone was not there despite being physically there in some part of the same house (point to note, I said house, not home...you get the drift), there really wasn't much to it. So, I decided to dump the maid I had become and return to being me. By the end of this year, I have, as a result managed to dump a sorry ass of a marriage that sapped my energy. So, my point one is really checked off. I dumped being an emotional slave to a man who I believed loved me. I still thought it was the most significant dumping of my life this year so I had to mention it. 

#2. The Weight Dump
This is a work in progress. Since January (yes, again...you see, a lot has been triggered off early this year), I have been consciously changing my food habits to arrive at a descending order of readings in the weighing scale. It is not easy. I am a foodie to the core. I love to cook and feed others around me as well. A slipped disc, a pained heart-break, a general life-is-not-going-anywhere needed to get sorted. So, from a whooping one hundred and seven, I shed, slowly, without a diet really (just a time and quantity change) and progressively descended nineteen. I want to bring it to twenty by the time the year flips to two thousand fifteen. 

#3. The Worry Dump
When life tests you over and over again, it makes you stress and sweat over the seeming impossibilities of the situations you can encounter. I have decided to give stress instead of taking it. It comes to me but I deflect it; pretty much like learning how to box. It is a lot about how you deflect an offensive and gain technical points. That works for me. Why should I be worried about things, events, people? I am now leaving that worrying bit to others. They should not be worried about me either. They should, in fact, be worried why they are worried about me. Hah! If you know me even one wee bit, that is something worth getting amused over. 

#4. The Self Preservation Dump
Life is short. You have just one life. I have decided to dump fears of being vulnerable, of protecting and preserving myself from pain and hurt. Sigh! It hasn't killed me yet and going by the score that I am still alive and kicking, I shouldn't really hide myself and stop myself from feeling what I wish to feel about anything. So yes, bring it on; the joy, the delight, the pain, the ecstasy, the hurt, the bruises, the threats, the love, the passion, the everything my life!

#5. The Careless-About-Heath Dump
This is an important one. It is one of the toughest one for me because this has always stayed a low priority on my list somehow. Yeah, I know. It's a pretty dense thing to do, a smart cookie like me and all that. So, here is to the beginnings of resetting the slipped disc, facing the scary instruments of a dentist, the exercises from the physio-therapist, the discipline needed to stay still and succumb myself to taking up yoga. Boy do I need encouragement for this. A lot.

#6. The Closing-My-Home-to-Visitors Dump
 The last I entertained and threw a fun party at home and a memorable one at that was really the New Year's Eve of 2012. I have stopped doing that and I truly want to begin to do that. I have lived alone all of this year, not entertaining, not feeling that joy of feeding and socializing in the personal territory of my home. There wasn't really a home. But, now, I feel, the roof over my head right now is the closest I've felt like home in a while. My home used to be a place resonating with laughter and the sheer delight of spending time with friends, sharing silly moments. I am dumping this reclusive mentality and opening my doors again. Christmas Eve is the date set in mind. (I grin when I write that.)

#7. The Being-Too-Scared-To-Get-Published Dump
Major dump again. I am collaborating, talking and discussing with a mind to get published. It is a big deal. I have been struggling with the fear of getting published for a decade now. Now, I am ready. So, be sure to get something of what comes out in the New Year to sit on your coffee table or find a place in your bookshelf/library. I am so looking forward to this. 

#8. The Pointless Drama Dump
As one gets older, I suppose it becomes clearer that one is wasting time on uselessly tolerating drama. The drama of relatives, of pointless ego battles of ME, ME, ME from everyone. Heck, let's now make it about ME instead. I want to prioritize ME. I will. I am so sick of the pointless drama, tears and theatrical activity that saps energy from what needs to be done. The emotional entrapment of being the older one, of being the responsible one and all else that comes with it. I am a single parent. I will do what is necessary to keep my life and hers together. It may not conform to the so-called rules laid down but I follow rationality that is purely selfish in its motives for my kid and me. So, yeah. I am dumping the traditional methods of dealing with drama. I will be blunt and to the point. I will not accept something without question or applying it to my situation and seeing it my way as well. 

#9. The Social Media Voyeurs Dump
Yes, this is a tradition and I do this Sweepathon for my Social Media platforms as well. I trim the people from my list who haven't interacted with me for ages. If you send me a request, please do communicate beyond that Add Friend Request. If you don't, you always have an option of just following. Why cram my timeline and make me lose sight of those who do communicate? So, trims will happen as they do, every single year, sometimes a couple of times in the same year. Oh, I don't mind getting dumped for not communicating either. Quid pro quo. 

#10. The Take-Me-For-Granted Dump
This is a tricky dump because I love so many people in my life. I love them to bits but as much as I love them, I know I have been taken for granted. A lot. I am done with that. I am done with being second or third priority and I cannot do this anymore. It saps my energy. It cannot be a one way street. So, yes. I am not going to be taken for granted. Some doors will close. I need the sunshine and the moonbeams to come in through another door. You see, everything evolves. The world has revolved and spun and the sun rises from a different fix now. 

I thought listing out ten things would be easy. It wasn't. I however liked the fact that it made me think about what is important for me now and what I need to do and contemplate all the work in progress. 

That's my list for #Dump10Things . What is yours?

Copyright Sandy@2014