Saturday, December 25, 2010

jet unlagged

so..i reached home last night. i was anxious while in Newark, tensed at the airport, hungry in the flight (food in Continental sucks), awed to see a horizontal rainbow while flying above the clouds, very tired after the landing...

Excited about coming home? no. zero. zilch.

As the 'o my God, i am emotionaly drained' paranoia set in, i seeked alternate explanations for my lack of feeling. maybe its because i practically dont live in the USA, i live in Harrison, which as everyone knows, is a messier, dirtier, more concise version of India itself. Or maybe bcos its not even a year since i left. Or that i had met my parents in summer. Or probably (this is a very long shot), i had just given my Molbio paper, and i was too exhausted for any feeling...

But nothing made sense. As i spotted an older dad and a thinner mom, and after the customary exclamations about my loss in weight ( what lies, my jeans are proof), i practically threw in the luggage and fixed my eyes outside through the window of the car. Maybe, revisiting the places i grew up in would stir my dead emotions. Would you believe it, i even hummed "ye jo des hai mera, swades hai mera" for a minute waiting for the eyes watering, chokiness that should have overpowered me by now. oh come on......

Then i figured. i was not Shah Rukh Khan's heroine. i was not Karan Johar's either. i do not dance around in chiffon sarees when it snows, i do not go jogging in Central Park, i can never manage to not spill coffee while i walk ( i have tried, believe me), i do not have the luxury of crying over a heartbreak on Brooklyn Bridge. i lack a scripted life. i cannot be expected to get straight As, be stick thin, fall in love, and sing for my country at the same time. na na.

So when after a year of surviving on ramen noodles, subway and samosa paav,God bless the cart wallah, i come back to the secure confines of home, all i feel is relief.

That nothing has changed. Bombay is still hot, still pleasant, still trafficky, and although still punctuated by terror alerts, the mornings still sees a crowd of fisher-women with their hair adorned with fresh flowers, the bus driver in a rare mellow mood, the already busy vada pav stalls in Churchgate, joggers smiling their way through excreta of various kinds, a dog scrutinising left overs at Chowpatty, students grumbling over tution classes, wondering if going to Siddhivinayak would yield better grades, the everything market at Colaba, a couple sneaking behind Band stand, the water lapping over Haji Ali, from the sun feebly trying to climb over a heavy spread of fog to the queen's lavish necklace in Marine Drive....I am relieved my home is just as how i had seen it last.

In the midst of the silent humbleness, I miss Harrison. I miss the bridge, with the wind creating ripples in the water, i miss not looking for the stop sign when i cross the roads, i miss the gossip in the campus centre, i miss the mess i have made out of my room, and also the comfort of independence that i have achieved, i miss the cold blast of air that hits my face the moment i step out, i miss the very few friends i have there....

But then i look at the sky, and i see the odd shaped moon, the same one here, the same one there. And finally, i come to believe, wherever i am, i will always be at home.

Songs? Anyone?

2 comments:

Kuntala said...

are Sumana,deshe? ja bolechho..Shahrukh Khan na hole 'yeh jo des' mone kore kanna pawa mushkil....

sumana said...

Kuntala di, porshu poucholam. er moddhyey Tirupati dorshon shesh. Maa-r kotha aar ki bolbo...