"Then it doesn't matter which way you walk," said the Cat.
"So long as I get somewhere,"
Alice added as an explanation.
"Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat,
"If you only walk long enough."
So what if the long walk never seems to end. It will take me somewhere, someday. I would want to believe that, Lewis Carroll. And I would want to thoroughly enjoy my journey.
But I am not an optimist. On the contrary, I have an inborn talent of being in this perennial state of discontentment. More often than not, I will look hassled, and I am mostly snappy. I didn't earn a title of "Pareshan Aatma" for no reasons!
So it comes as a pleasant surprise when people recognise my voice or face even after a decade in a place like Mumbai. A warm handshake, a close hug and it doesn't take anytime to fill the years lying in the middle. The years gone by lie dormant anyway. What matters is the moment I lived with them, or the moment which is now - the "this" moment, which I am living with them again. Why haven't I learnt to live in the "this" moment then?
The twins are the happiest when we are traveling. The "ghumantu" streak is but natural, they are my twins after all. I should be happy too, when I am traveling. But the travel anxiety mostly brings in a couple of sleepless nights, and this extreme anxiety of "what will happen if the plane crashes" or "the train derails".
While I am worrying about such useless things, the twins are busy saying hello to the strangers, savoring every detail with their inquisitive eyes. The stocky air-hostess with a bun is getting a compliment from my daughter and my son is happily joking with the steward. And I am busy thinking about everything that went wrong with the journey. I shouldn't have paid this much to the taxiwallah... I haven't packed enough warm clothes... I shouldn't have traveled in a frenzy... I shouldn't have traveled at all.
Relax Mommy. Can we just be in this moment? This too shall pass.
Sigh. Yes it will.
It is a bright and sunny day in Mumbai, just the kind I love. I am in this city to live the dreams I had 10 years ago, as a fresh graduate out of college. I had a partner in crime. My brother, who was probably in his 3rd year of Engineering in Kharagpur. We were day dreamers. We still are. We only thought of stories and music. We still do. We wanted to create a magnum opus which would shake the world. We still want to do that. But we had very few means, and no idea of where this road less traveled would take us. We then bought time. Right across where Bhai lives now is the McDonald's where Bhai and I promised to each-other, "We will come back to Mumbai exactly after 10 years, and we will make it big. We will do just the kind of work we wanted to do."
Yes, we are here to do just that. No dream is big enough, nothing is impossible.
We lived that moment of despair and hopelessness. We are living this moment of hope and belief. This too shall pass, as the other did. So, we better live both, and well.
So why do I worry about tits-bits which are not under my control? Where is my mind when I am chopping the onions or making parathas? Who cares what will happen ten years hence? Will I live that long? Today is a beautiful day. I have a family by my side, two beautiful kids who are my most influential teachers, friends who worry over my status updates and acquaintances who are willing to help even if I haven't bothered to call them for 10 long years. This too will pass, if I don't live it. This too will be taken away if I don't show my gratitude.
So, worry not, for this day is one of its kind.
Oh, by the way did I share another quote by Lewis Carroll? "She generally gave herself very good advice, (though she very seldom followed it)." Good one, no?