Dear Bindu kun & Pixie

Dear Bindu kun,

I wrote a letter to you some time ago, because I had a brand new fountain pen and ink flowed from it so smoothly that I couldn’t help but write. Now that I am doing this blog challenge, I cannot help but write this as well.

We met as fellow members of a book group which I was inducted in to by my lovely sister after I had sent her a book. There are so many ways it could have not happened. It could have been a different book, or sent a different time, or perhaps she could have graduated to a Kindle sooner, or might have missed out her morning tea that day, but certain set of events took place in the right order, with the right people for me to have found you.

I have said this before, and I will say it again that I am in awe of you. How you are able to manage work, a family, consuming books with that voracious appetite of yours, and cook is beyond me at times. Particularly when I struggle with something like making Maggi on certain work days. While we are on the topic of food, the pictures of your weekend kitchen are just not fair. Nuh uh. How do you expect us to sit on this side of the screen, and look at all the delicious cakes you bake, and stews you simmer? The only silver lining is that we don’t have it as tough as your immediate neighbors who even have to manage with sounds and aroma of the food being prepared. Well boo-hooo for them.

Do you know that you’re the person who’ sent me the most number of books? I liked the irony of you having sent American Gods and Religion for Atheists together :P . Oh and the cake and cookies you sent around new year’s were absolutely yum. One of the few rare moments that my friends or colleagues were explicitly forbidden (and I saw to it) from having even a single bite of the load. I had it all for myself. My precious.

When we do meet, I am looking forward to your cooking the most. I want to take in the sights and sounds of you getting about to making food. I have always believed that cooking for someone, is converting your thoughts and feelings for them into something physical, and then sharing it with them. I am sure I would end up licking something shamelessly :D

Thank you for the food, the books, and the friendship.
Love,

Count Santulan

 

 

Dear Pixie,

For someone who got so involved in naming a rat snake that liked to say hi to the sister of mine, you don’t like the crawlies so much. But they’re so cute, no? Scuttling towards you just to say hi or hug you :P . Ok, I will digress from this topic lest you get tempted to want to punch me. Not that you don’t have reasons already :D

Someday, when I have saved enough money to, I would like to make a trip to your place. I would like to sleep in at your place at least once, so that I can wake up early and kick you awake, or just yank off the covers if I am feeling kind. On second thoughts, I might prod you with a stick instead so that you didn’t kick me when I do wake you up. Or we can let you sleep in peace if you’re willing to bribe me by making Akki roti and hot rasam. Yeah, that should work out real well :D

You’re another person who’s like family but we haven’t met in the flesh yet. Had we been in the same city, I would be eating a number of meals at your place. Or call in with ice cream at impromptu times, because ice cream.  Then you would tell me off on how so much ice cream is not good for me, and would end up eating half of it so that I don’t have to eat all of it. Such a generous soul you are :P

But seriously, you’re the person who genuinely cares about people in your life in a manner that is not over bearing, and makes one feel warm from the inside. When you do get here, I can dump a bunch of books at your place for you to read. Personal recommendations from my personal collection, that I think you’d like to read.

Thank you for sending me pictures of the creepy crawlies that you meet on your walks (and in turn creeping out your husband in the process). I promise to treat you to puffs and patisseries when we meet.

Love,

Hrishi

 

 

Written for the 30 Days 30 Letters prompt: A letter to someone you wish you could meet. Other bloggers can add their links to the linky below:


 

Dear Gigi

Dear Gigi,

Before I get down to saying anything else, I must thank you for sending me a copy ‘Of Marriageable Age’. I had spent years looking for it, but was not able to find a copy of it. You cannot imagine the joy opening your package brought me, when I finally held the book in my hands. I haven’t gotten around to re-reading it yet, just like I have not read Hedgehog yet, but I will do so in due time and have full joy in doing so. The fact that chocolates came along made time stop for a moment.

Sometimes it is funny, how facebook affects people. In this case, brought us together via common friends. While we are yet to meet in person, we have spoken so much that it would seem we’ve met so many times before, probably over coffee. You’d love that :D . For some reason, it seems so very natural to have developed this level of comfort with you.

You’re such a widely read person, and I understand that I am not the first person to tell you that, and will not be the last. I have a fondness for people who love to read, people who get absorbed in worlds that are not their own, and live the lives of others. It sort of makes you appreciate the things in life you wouldn’t otherwise.  Maybe someday I will get to read what you write. Not write in the book sense of manner, but scribbling and meanderings. They offer a much more insight into what goes in the mind of the writer, or so I think.

Some day, I imagine we will meet over pancakes, with some blueberries maybe. We could follow that up with a visit to the city museum. Remember the pictures that you had shared with me? It has such wonderful sights, and how the light plays with the carvings, shadows and stone playing with each other. I would definitely like to visit your favourite book store, and pick out a book for you. A nice hardback preferably. A book bought without any prior reading upon, except what the cover offers and the wonder of what the pages bring forth.

Perhaps when we meet, it will be like meeting an old friend after a long time. Maybe we will not just be internet friends.

Love,

H

 

Written for the 30 days 30 letters prompt: Your favorite internet friend. Others can add their links to the linky below:

Dear B

B is an entirely different person from D, whom I wrote to here. I will use B instead of her name for confidentiality reasons.

 

Dear B,

I remember writing a status update quite some time ago in which I was ‘A’ and you were ‘B’. The status was about how much A likes B among other people, and sometime later you addressed yourself as B in our chats. It wasn’t that I hadn’t expected you to get it, but your mentioning it in such a nonchalant manner made me smile.

I had expressed my feelings to you online in one of our chats, since you were in a different city. You replied that you love me like a friend. The feeling sunk in after I woke up the next morning and was having a bath. I felt a strange sense of frustration a punched the bucket of hot water really hard, which caused the hot water to spill over me. It brought an important realization to me, about me and you that made me laugh the very next moment. I had seen a bunch of guys, some of them my friends go from loving to hating someone in the snap of fingers because they had refused to reciprocate the feelings.

And here I was, doing the same. I realized that as much as it would seem natural, I couldn’t bring myself to hate you. I liked you because of who you are, and the fact that you were being yourself, only made you appreciate you even more. The idea that you don’t feel for somebody just because they feel the same for you, seemed so unnatural all of a sudden.

After all these days, I never find it uncomfortable talking with you. I still feel the urge to send you a picture of the yummy spicy paneer wrap from Goodies, when I pass it. I remember your reaction the first time I told you about it, and rubbed it in your face that you don’t have a Goodies café in your city. Well, it didn’t help that they would be out of the wrap for the next entire week whenever I would go to the café, so I am afraid of that happening again. :P

One of the fondest memories that I have was of when we had been to chocolate room. We talked, talked, and talked to no ends. We laughed so heartedly, I am surprised that no one asked us to tone it down. One of the few times when I lost track of what I had ordered, how hungry I was.

Many people do say what we have as you friendzoning me. I don’t understand why the term is used in such a derogatory manner. On the other hand, there were times when I worried that I had relationship-zoned you, put you in an awkward situation where someone you are great friends with, asks you out, and you have an awkward moment thinking of how to respond. If I could take it all back, then I would. However that would mean taking back some of the memories I have of us, and our conversations we have had since. I remember how we spoke the peace that comes from coming back home tired and just spend the night staring at the stars. The idea of it made you so happy.

Here’s to more conversations, and memories till we meet next time. It goes without saying that you have to get me chocolates.

 

Written for the 30 Days 30 Letters prompt: A letter to your Ex-boyfriend/girlfriend/love/crush. Other bloggers can the links to their posts in the linky below:

 

Dear Old man who sat next to me on the bus

Dear Old man who sat next to me on the bus,
Of course I don’t know if you actually read my blog, because I never mentioned my blog in our conversation in the bus. If by some means you did stumble upon my blog, neither of us do know for sure that it is the other person on the other side of the screen. Maybe this letter is something that might hit a familiar chord with you.

You and I met on a bus ride from Ahmedabad to Baroda one evening years ago. The bus was incredibly slow and took almost twice the time it normally takes. Both of us could have still not had had this conversation, had my mobile not been on low battery. I generally keep my earphones on, or use some app if I am not sleeping on the bus. On account of not having a good charge, I pulled out a book from my bag. I still remember that it was ‘Atlas Shrugged’ by ‘Ayn Rand’.

You could have kept to yourself but luckily for us, your curiosity got the better of you. You asked me with wonder how people of my age were reading the book. I confess that my initial feeling was that of contempt, primarily at the idea of being disturbed by a stranger while I was reading. However, better sense prevailed, and I told you that this book had been a recommendation from my mentor. He had in fact repeatedly insisted that I do read it.

While we did discuss the book, as to why I liked it and why you didn’t, you began to ask me about my job. It was a different manner in which you asked questions. We discussed processes, systems and control mechanisms. How the cost spent quality control ends up more than paying for itself in the long run, and what your personal experiences had been about it from your time at your own work place.

To this day, it remains one of the freest flowing discussion I have ever had with a stranger. Thank you, for the conversation that day. Thank you for the time that felt that it passed faster than it did, and for the re-assurance that not all old people who chat with you have marriage or settling down to discuss.

 

 

I wrote this for the 30 days 30 letters prompt: A letter to a stranger. Other bloggers can add the links to their posts in the linky below:

Dear Dreamworld of mine

Dear Dreamworld,

Thank you for being there. For someone (or something) that isn’t a sentient being which I may address, I sure have a lot of thanks to give. Like just now, I had fallen asleep without planning or realizing. I was having a dream which had me in the same universe as The Mentalist TV show. The realization that I was in the universe of a fictional character, made me wake up. I have woken quite a few times like this when I have been sleeping when I shouldn’t have all because I realized that I am in a dream. So there’s a thank you for letting me be on time for this letter :D

As something that is a part of my sub-conscious, you’re very important me. Not that I remember all or most of my dreams, but what I do remember of my time spent in you, is very important to me. I have had very scary nightmares, but when I do go ‘astray’ or do something that I do not want or believe to be wrong, you are there to show up with it and make me feel all uneasy about it. For it is worth, it helps me wipe dust off my own moral mirror and get a clearer picture of myself. At worst, I have woken up in a nervous sweat to realize how bad I was doing.

There is however one particular moment for which I will be eternally grateful to you. This was months ago, and I had begun to get very close to a particular woman whom we know as B. A frequent dream would be about B and me having dinner and some form of attack or invasion taking place. While it started with humans, it went to be more dramatic with armies, aliens, and supernatural elements. In it in self, there is nothing spectacular about that. I read online that it is common to have such dreams, particularly for men about women. Initially, I thought the only manner it stood out was about the manner I dealt with the attack to save her, and began to display an array of super human abilities to do so.

However, in this particular dream while the same thing was happening, everything paused and I was able to have a moment of clarity in which I spoke to myself. Dream me, was able to converse the inner conscience me. I am still amazed as to how I was able to have this conversation, particularly since it involved having two versions of me speak to each other as corporal manifestations. I asked myself the point of these dreams, and proceeded to answer that it was all manner of showing how much I cared for her by showing that I would want to defend her.

In this conversation in dream land, I told how I don’t want my feelings and care for her to be defined by me defending her particularly because it was me who was imagining different situations for her to be defended from. I was putting her in danger to defend her to show what I felt. It was then I realized how much I was de-valuating her by defining her as someone who would constantly need me instead of me liking her for being her own independent self. That was when I realized the extent of the feelings I had for her, and my own internal double standards.

For that one particular dream, and the realizations that followed, I want to give you a big thank you. It’s not that I am not otherwise grateful for you being there for me. Apart from getting to do so many things in my dreams that I wouldn’t get to otherwise, you act as a mirror to who I am, and what I have become.

 

 

Written for the 30 days 30 letters prompt: A letter to your dreams. Other bloggers can add the links to their posts for this prompt in the linky below:

Dear Carrot Tyrant

I came across Shail Mohan in my early days of blogging around 2005 or 2006. Back then we used to blog on Yahoo! 360 (which was sadly shut down by the folks at Yahoo!). One of my early memories is that of her coming in my dream as a lecturer in college, who proceeded to order me to eat carrots as they are good for eyes. You may call her the Carrot Tyrant for that, but be prepared for any red bricks that come flying your way.

Dear Shail Di,

When I first saw you on 360, you came across as a person who was generous in the use of virtual red bricks. Soon my curiosity got the better of me, and I started frequenting your blog more. One thing lead to another, and a friend request later you were my adopted blog sister. And what fun times we’ve had since then.

I guess I was lucky that your (formerly) bald sister was in Baroda, which mean we could meet when you made your trips to the city. I loved the dosas you made for me. Having someone cook for you is such a delight, which is why those dosas were extra yum. Come think of it, it was my first trip to Baroda when I came to meet you.

Meeting her in person for the first time

Meeting her in person for the first time

 

What was even better that when you came back again, I had a job. This meant that if I couldn’t host you in my kitchen, I could at least take you out for food. I remember that you didn’t have ice cream, I should probably have had your share instead :P .

shailsev

But apart from the meeting in person, what we’ve really bonded over has been our conversations. I think you’re responsible for a chunk of my views changing when it comes to feminism. Reading your blog in the early days, made me see things that were so obvious but were either hiding in plain sight, or what I was choosing to be conveniently blind to.

I love your devotion to photography. I now know the names and identification of some birds because of the pictures you take. It is actually refreshing to see someone put in time and effort like this out of choice and not because they have to do it. You’re so lovely that you even brave out to take pictures of chameleons for me, in spite of the fact that you think that they’re icky at best.

When people say that family is not just blood, they are right. We’re example of the family we choose. I have always felt a form of kinship with you in a manner that you’re one of the few select people that I feel strongly about. Which is why I write this letter to you, the closest someone I have to a sibling.

With Love,

Count Santulan.

PS: I am not going to stop with sharing spiders on your wall any time soon. You’re going to have to put up with that for longer :P

 

Written for 30 days 30 letters prompt: A letter to your sibling (or closest relative).

Other bloggers can share the links to their posts in the linky below:

Dear Mom and Dad

Dad died in an accident when I was about 6 years of age. I have been brought up by mom ever since, juggling job and raising me up. I am writing a letter to both of them.

 

Dear Mom,

This is a letter that you are not going to get to read, at least not for a long time. This is because I am not yet ready to discuss the contents with you in person. It’s not that we’ve not tried before, it’s specifically we’ve tried talking about it before. We feel so strongly about our own stances, which are mutually exclusive that things end up getting heated.

You’ve put in a lot of efforts, many of which are beyond what I would normally expect a parent to. In your defense, I can be a difficult  person to deal with at times. Add to that I come from an entirely different school of thought. I am highly liberal and open about what and who I want. I have always wanted to be defined by my choices, choices which usually lead me to be away from where I am born. Your choices have always been to stick to where you are. I have always been about what I want and you about what you have to.

You do things which you think that are in the long run good for me. Quite a bit of your life has been focused on to shape a future for me, and look out for me. Having done it for so long, it has been your default programming. Which is why I think that no matter how old I get, you will always want to have a protective watch out for me. Remember in an entirely different situation of our life; someone had once said that no matter how much good you want to do for someone, you cannot force good upon them. It has been nearly 15 years since I had heard that, and the idea of it has seeped into me. I cannot write over here the details of the circumstances in which they were said, and I apologize because in doing so I am withholding all that you had to go through with.

What I want to tell you is that I am headstrong about my choices. As much as I like to think that I am gifted in terms of my intellect, I tend to make correspondingly huger mistakes. Some mistakes which on account of repeated occurrences, may take me months to recover fully from. But what good is my own life, if I do not pave for it myself? Even if it means making it difficult. I understand your concern for me, but our opposing manners of thinking have contributed to making you a little bitter. I just hope that in the near future we come to a better understanding of each other, and better acceptance.

Love,
Hrishi.

 

Dear Dad,

Most of my memories with you have been pleasant. The times you got me chocolates, or took me to the park to play on the slides or let me choose the cookies that a spot of jam on them. Since the hospital you worked at was kilometers away from home, I could only get to spend weekends with you. When it came to parenting, you were always the easy parent while mother did most of the disciplining. I guess this is why I would want to more spend time with you. I know realize that as much as it was fun spending time with you, I needed to be guided in the manner mom did. Especially if it required strict parenting.

 

I remember that there were times when I took your easy attitude for granted, and was very unruly with you. Given that we did spend so little time together, I am sorry for that. Just before you died, you had quit your job to setup your own clinic near home. However that would not come to be, and the accident happened. To be honest, for quite a lot of time mom never let me feel that I had a parent short. She cared and provided in a manner that all my needs and quite a number of my wants were taken for.

Given that I was never overly attached to you, I didn’t miss you much. Mom did, for you were her husband. While her job and savings ensured that we didn’t miss a providing family member, your absence lead to other problems. Now that we were ‘alone’, your brothers continued to treat us in the second hand manner that they did. They graduated from that to taking a large amount of what was rightfully mom’s and belonged to us. You could have had the sense to warn her about the kind of dogs your family is.

Some time ago, when I was going through a difficult time I ended up staring at your picture in the house and a line from Harry Potter came to mind to me: “Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love.” The fact that a lot of this could have been different had you not died, makes me feel a little bitter. Sometimes I think how things could have different had mom had someone else in the family apart from me. If there would have been someone else to be there for her, would I have been able to feel freer? I guess it does sound incredibly selfish, but it is my manner of feeling pity on the living.

Love,

 

Dear Mom and Dad,

The irony of this letter doesn’t escape me. I choose not to share what I have written with mom because of my belief that we have tried too much of it already, and failed. I cannot share it dad, because quite simply he isn’t there anymore. When I speak to friends about their parents, their feelings are so much different than mine. D tells me how she feels happiest and safest with her head in her mum’s lap, while another friend tells me how he looks up to the advice his dad gives him. It is not that I don’t remember my happy times with you. I remember how we used play carom on the weekends, and dad would nudge one of my discs into the holes so that I would win. I remember how mum would make ice cream and slush for me when summers would come, so that I wouldn’t fall sick from eating some of the road side stuff. I remember dad holding me down, when I was kicking another doctor, dad had taken me to when I had had jaundice, and he had brought out the injection. The two of you would buy me a toy gun that made rattling noises to cheer me up. I even remember the hours mom would put in to make sweaters for me, or how she took care of me during the vacations I got sick.

But more than that, I do remember the times either of you got angry at me. The times when I was mad with either of you, and as I grew up the times, I get frustrated with mom. Kids like to cuddle up and sleep with parents, finding comfort in their presence. I have always found solace in being away instead. Mom remembers how I would roll away to the side of the bed when I would get sleepy, while other kids would roll to their parents embrace.

I guess this is how we are.

 

 

Written for Day 3 of the 30 Days 30 letters prompt: A letter to your parent(s).

Other bloggers can add the links to your posts in the linky below: