When was the last time your mouth followed your heart? Where there were no filters on your tongue and no Darwin’s natural selection at work with your words…

Isn’t this what makes  children so fabulous? The ability to speak their mind without giving two hoots about what they are actually speaking? I am not saying to be careless and drop inappropriate comments at the drop of that hat – simply let your heart have its way instead of the muddling brain editing what you are looking to express.

There have been so many moments filed away in my brain that if I open them, I invariably wish that I had spoken instead of choosing to remain silent. And what I noticed was that I was also repressing the GOOD things and not just the snide & sarcastic remarks (absolutely well-deserved though). I was doing it by keeping quiet, maintaining a neutral face and reigning in the urge to give those impulsive hugs!

I have little experienced in theater and mime was my absolute favourite – the scope of storytelling through expressions is tremendous and most enjoyable. Every day we used to exercise our faces and the control our features into putting together the emotion we want to showcase – happiness, greed, anger, fear, greed, insanity, love – you name it, we did it. I learnt the true power of our faces and the depth of feelings it can project.

It came out insanely well during out post-graduation when our communications professor made us all recite this very stupid passage in a serious dramatic mode …. In front of a video camera!!! So that we could look at our recordings and study our verbal and non-verbal patterns. The output was hilarious with people trying to keep a straight face while narrating. It resulted in this video by this creative guy, who put together the bloopers and shy smiles and bursts of laughter uncontrolled during this exercise to Say by John Mayer – And the line “Say what you need to say” kind of ended up as our motto.

A motto that I wish I could go back to or at least, work towards! And let go instead of holding back on that compliment or that apology or simply a thank you. Expressing involves more than one person which is beautiful!


Linda’s prompt at Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “Press.” Find a word that starts with press-, ends with -press, or use “press” as a word all by itself and responsible for filling me with the touching memories of university! 🙂


Blessed by a Monkey

Meet Coco - The persian cat who scratched me
Meet Coco – The persian cat who scratched me

The baby slept peacefully under the windows. Unnoticed by the adults in the next room, a monkey lightly padded in to sit quietly near the baby. Maybe a pat was stolen here or there. All was well. Until this lady came and took in the scene. And raised hell. The sanctity was broken. The monkey bounded out with one last look. The baby went back to sleep after stirring. Blessed by the monkey – the parents attribute all loony actions of their lovable daughter to that incident.

I think I turned out fine. That monkey probably just saw a lost kin in me. We bonded and shared a beautiful moment even if I have zero recollection. But then that’s me! Who does the dog chase? Who runs into a horse on the pavement? Whose nose does the crow slap five times? In whose room does the lizard make a home? In whose balcony does the cat hide? Yours truly! The blessing at work?

I guess that is why I talk with dogs. Bus-stop, building or bench – when a dog comes up, I start with my best bark and then proceed with words. I lecture on life, list the fruits I ate, boast about the consistency of my poop, wail about work, and even touch upon illiteracy. And they listen. I see pricking ears and solemn blinks as they look at me (or the sandwich I am wolfing down). A whine here and a shake there. Or they trot off if I bore them.

I love dogs! I could never have one, so I sought any dog I could find to play with. And remember aforementioned affinity? I have lost track of the number of times a stray has joined me on a stroll. Five minutes to fifty minutes! Once, this dog even let me remove a piece of wire latched on her (Not cats though. Only two kittens have followed me). Animals have their ways right? They somehow understand or at least attempt to make sense of our verbal and non-verbal cues. They reciprocate in manners we are too dumb to comprehend. They have a sixth sense about our feelings and often give their best head butt in support.

I remember when I was sitting at the neighbor’s feeling weepy. Out of nowhere, their cocker spaniel came running and jumped to hug me. And refused to leave my side. He just knew. Every single time. Once, I made an enemy of a cousin’s Persian cat. I was feeding the little rascal and he was acting pricey (obviously!). So I just went “No wonder I love dogs more!” and hey presto! Fierce scratches decorated my arm a second after the words came out. Oh, pro tip: Read a boring verse to nagging house lizards – they disappear in seconds!

We have all hear of these wonderful accounts what humans share with animals and these date back to centuries! Dogs, lions (Ah Christian!), horses and of course monkeys. Perhaps the entire animal kingdom out there has the capability of connecting with us. Maybe if we just stopped, listened and barked…

So now. Repeat after me… “Bow Wow!”

Share your moment of bonding with a big little fur ball – Animal lovers, animal haters, pet owners, lonely bachelors – whoever you are!

The Terminal


A bumpy landing for a turbulent flight. The aircraft was dark and quiet, only my dry mouth and restless fingers showed any signs of life. This flight was a queer one – no other visible passengers, no smiling hostess and no deep baritone of the captain.

I walked on and on towards the baggage carousel, the weight of my limbs heavy on my feet. The conveyor belt was deathly still but a steady trickle of other passengers kept coming in. Were they on my flight? I don’t know. Were there any other flights landing at that ungodly time? I don’t know. The crowd kept increasing but we were surprisingly a well-behaved one – patient and still, all eyes towards the mouth of the belt.

All of a sudden, like a giant snake come to life, the belt yawned, grumbled and slithered. Pop! Bag One. Pop! Bag Two. One woman stepped forward and claimed her labelled bag. She waited patiently until her partner got his. Linking hands, they walked towards the exit and out into the world. The second pair did the same. The third. Then the fourth. All linking hands and strolling casually outside.

I saw a bag – a midnight blue – which had my name on it. But it wasn’t MY bag! My checked-in luggage was a buttery yellow and ominously absent. My eyes kept following the blue bag’s ride on the belt as I stood undecided. Just then, I noticed my yellow bag sliding in. Just then, I felt a tap on my shoulder. I glanced back without interest into smiling brown eyes of this guy.

“Sorry, I got late” he said. As if I had been expecting him. Was I? I was, wasn’t I?

Reaching out, he effortlessly picked up my yellow bag. He checked the name tag and cheerfully confirmed, “Yep! That’s mine.” I glanced at him warily. And then at his arms. He sure seemed strong enough to pick up my big bad bag so easily. I resumed my staring match with the blue one. I reached out once but pulled back at the last moment. Noticing my hesitation, he quietly added “I had checked this blue bag in, you know. I wasn’t sure if anyone would come forward to claim it.”

My heart gave a lurch and a start, but I still refused to look at him. I prepared to claim that blue bag as mine even though I still reserved doubts about my strength. As it came closer, even the belt sighed and slowed down helpfully. The guy, bless him, reached out and said, “Come on! I will help you. It really isn’t as heavy as it looks”

I grasped one handle. He grasped the other handle. Together, we heaved it off the belt and settled in on the floor.

“There now, was it that bad?”

Slowly I shook my head and offered a small smile, “No. I think I could get used to it”

“Good! You want to get out of here?”

“Yeah. I have been waiting a long time. A really long time.

I picked the bag and comfortably adjusted it on my shoulder. Already it seemed lighter and friendlier. He was holding out his hand, smiling. For the first time, I noticed the twinkle in his eyes, the messy unkempt hair, and the dimple on his left cheek.

With no hesitation I linked my hands with his and we walked into the fresh air, the weight of our bags already forgotten in our laughter.

The sign at the belt blinked “EMOTIONAL BAGGAGE CLAIM”. The “E” had slipped and was hanging upside down. Perhaps someone should fix it.

Finding Flirting 101

That makes two of us!
That’s my line!

C: He was asking for your number. I’ll give him?

Me: Who? What number?

C: The guy you were ignoring for your jalapeno cheese balls….

Me: Oh him!! 😐

A typical scene from my life! I have had approximately 13.5 conversations (I abandoned one half-way; my Bailey’s shot had arrived) that fall into this pattern. After long hours of pondering, I have narrowed down the top reasons why I never know when a guy flirts with me –

  1. Food
  2. Dog (generally a lab)
  3. Food
  4. Music
  5. Sheer Dumbness/Ignorance
  6. Food

I am NOT joking. I am completely clueless at zooming in if a guy is genuinely being nice or actually flirting – especially with yummy cheesy food around. Yes, I am a woman with priorities sorted out really well!

I see friends fall for people in a matter of days. Or hours. They hop, skip and jump from one “relationship” to another in a matter of weeks. They decide that it clicks and off they ride into the sunset – or the nearest coffee shop. It is just their scene, you know! And then you have me, who takes months if not years to realize that someone was into me – let alone even the possibility of a relationship. At parties, I see couples everywhere and wonder where was I when they were collecting “getting together” skills!

I checked and double checked myself. Yeah, I am fine. I have those moments of insane attraction – so clearly nothing wrong in the biology department. I am pretty by most standards. And I am not a total retard. The tiniest of problems lies in missing the skill of subtly deducing that the guy talking about trying out that new place might just be asking me for a date. Apparently it is not rocket science! Generally, it is shoved into my face by a not-so-sympathetic friend who doesn’t even hide rolling her eyes. Once, someone actually deigned to share a few flirting templates for my understanding.

Yeah, woe is me.

So anyway, a friend was telling me about this girl he met sometime back and they hit off pretty well (really, where does all this happen???). They are now on a perpetual flirt mode overflowing with innuendos. I casually asked, “So, what next?” No clear answer there. A lot about having someone and not necessarily having someone. I am guessing that the idea of being in a relationship is often more enticing than the person you are with! Which is fine, all God’s children… I am not judging.

But again, my really confused unexposed mind questions, how do you fall out of this habit or how do you know that this time it is different? That your generic flirting scene has dug deeper feelings for someone. I mean, people fall in love and get together all the time right. For life! How do they know? How is that love different from… err regular love?

‘You just know’ is what I get, which hopefully I will understand one fine morning.

Until then, I am calling up some academy to register for Flirting 101 – they got a prize candidate here!

The perfect prompt over at Stream of Consciousness Saturday hosted by Linda: “scene/seen” When the dam bursts inside my head when faced with, “What’s your scene with him?” – this is what happens!