Friday, May 06, 2011

I Belong

Entering her new world for the first time, she gasped, a sharp intake of breath; in fear that she might wake up and find that this is all a dream. But the lab was real and to Shiela immensely beautiful. Spartan, surgically clean and wildly futuristic – bathed in luminous white work lights there were gleaming work areas, state-of-the-art equipment and most of all brilliant, brilliant people working away at their stations.

Somewhere on the floor Bryan Adams crooned softly from a cell phone ringer -

‘Let nothing come between this and me,

‘Cause everything I want – is everything that’s here’
“Oh yeah baby! Definitely all here!”

‘This place is paradise – it’s the place I call home’

“My new home...” her eyes gleamed.

Mrs. Mather, the lab director, was giving them, the batch of newbies, the Grand Induction Tour.
Mrs. Mather had short, cropped, chestnut hair, sensible pumps and surprisingly glasses that
screamed Prada with a deep, rich voice; far from the frump was expecting, drawing from the image of Mrs. Mather’s counterparts back home.

“And this is the neo-physics section, completely Mr. Gupta’s domain. Marion and Julio – those there, are your stations. Miss. Newson will be your mentor.” Mrs. Mather ploughed on through the tour and allocations.

“And here we have the, entrance to the Chemistry wing where Mme. Scherbatsky rules.”

“Ah Chemistry!” Shiela loved everything about Chemistry, right from the sound of it, to its ever evolving nature; just as much as she loved the man from whom she had inherited this love, Appa, her father.

She thought back to the cataclysmic argument a year ago – Strains of the Cranberries from her brother’s new Bose speakers were punctuating their argument.

“With their tanks and their bombs,
And their bombs and their guns.”


“Appa, I really want to go! It’s a great opportunity! The scope for research here in India has become
so limited, it’s almost meaningless.

“Oops!” she had thought immediately; “Now I’ve had it.”

“Are you suggesting that my work is meaningless?” her father roared. She wasn’t able to find the words to explain herself. After what seemed like an interminable pause he said, “It’s your life Shiela.” Turned and walked out of the room.

She was brought back to the present with Mrs. Mather’s deep voice smiling at her, “And Shiela Pundit, you’ve got lab C with Mme. Scherbatsky herself. Lucky you!”

While Dolores O'Riordan was still screeching from her brother’s room,

“But you see, it's not me, it's not my family.
In your head, in your head they are fighting,”


She sat in front of the dressing table and unscrewed the concealer, the same brand that she had been using for the last 5 years.She poured out the the ususal copious amounts of concealer and began to carefully apply the liquid on her face.

Remembering back to the day of her wedding when she, who had always been envied for her beauty and her flawless complexion, didn't require any of this unsavoury stuff. She now sat with intense concentration to hide that very skin behind a clayey concealer. She remembered her wedding day nearly 5 years back - the beautician was amazed to see a bride so beautiful without the bridal paraphanelia.It was her face that had captured the attention and consequently the heart of her future husband.

This beauty which she was once so proud of was today the bane of her life. The challenge to hide her pain and still measure up to the standards of the world had become a matter of routine for her.Touching up the makeup she realized this careful regimen for her had now become a sad necessity.

Just as she finished and turned, the pallu of her sari caught on the bottle and it crashed to the ground. She saw the mess caused by the gooey liquid which was for her; not a whim, but a necessity. Suddenly she found herself crying, the broken pieces of glass reflecting her state of mind and something in her snapped and she thought, "Till when will I paint away the streaks of pain??"

She walked into the bathroom and washed away all her makeup to expose her peaches and cream marred by black and purple bruises. Purposefully, she picked up her handbag and strode out of her home into the world without her concealer!

This was the first step in the fight to get her life back!

I had written this a long while back. Original Location:

Thursday, May 05, 2011


The earphones fit perfectly for a change, snugly, warm and comforting in my ears.

I reached into my pocket and turned up the volume of my iPod. Dido began to sing a little louder than one second ago.

'no white flag, above my door'
oh no baby, I thought, no white flag.

'...go down with the ship...'
indeed you will, and so will I.

Walking through the aisle, I looked at the passengers on both sides. They stared back mat me scared, faces pale and it struck me a little funny. I positioned myself and began my performance, I'd rehearsed my lines well and knew I would kill it. I realised though, that I was talking a bit too loudly, like headphon'ed' people normally do.

Same can be said true for people with 2 Kg RDX trapped on their bodies. One of my two brothers was done with the praying and he tapped me on the shoulder saying that it was my turn.

I walked into the pilot's cabin and sat in the co-pilot's chair. I smiled at the pilot's blood streaked face which radiated hate at me like a brilliant heater, the kinds we could ony dream of back home on cold winter nights. I sat there looking at the clouds, Strato Cumuls the passanger next to me had called them and the cities standing tall and far far away.

Not for long though.

I did not pray, just skipped to my next favorite song. The clock at my belt slowly ticked to blasting point.

Just enough time to squeeze in Floyd.....'Time'.

I had written this a long while back. Original Location: