Year that Was

Endymion by John Keats begins with the words: A thing of beauty is a joy for ever. In order to cope with the situations that arose in 2015, I wandered around in search of beauty which led to this year having more than its fair share of beauty and the inspired joy.

It is the big shocks in life that makes one appreciate the small things and 2015 had its fair share of nasty shocks. So while the stereotypical end of year lists have been doing their rounds and time is ripe for the list of New Year resolutions, here is my list of the moments that made 2015 the year when I ‘grew-up’.

2015 began with a “big bang”. The world as I had known for seven years, came to an abrupt end. I was trying desperately hard to cope with the developments. At such a time, it was a visit to Nizamuddin Dargah on a cold Thursday evening that led to epiphany. With magical notes of Qawwali in the air, I learnt a very important lesson succinctly put below:

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Once this lesson had been successfully learnt, memorised and internalised, life took on a new meaning. Old friendships were rekindled, new ones forged, all passions followed and life was and still is being lived ‘to the leas’. From coping with the shocks that lurch behind random corners to seeing for myself things I had always imagined or read about, 2015 was a great teacher.

I always enjoy seeing for myself the processes that I find intriguing. One such process was sheep shearing. (I had always wondered how the coarse fur was eventually transformed into bales of wool). It was during my trek to Malana that I saw sheep being sheared before my eyes. The process along with the particular scissors used for the purpose captured my imagination. Kasol-Malana was also the place where I saw for myself scenery, landscapes and huts the way I had always painted them since time immemorial

Another similar experience happened at Khardung La in Ladakh. Way back in 2001, when I had opened PowerPoint for the first time and was browsing the clip-art images, I wondered why snow flake was represented by such a fancy looking ‘design’. A few years later, Chemistry solved the mystery. Another set of years later, on a cold morning in Ladakh, a snow crystal landing on my muffler put the perfect end to this story. While recounting Ladakh memories I should mention two more ‘events’: driving through a herd of sheep (on our way to Keylong from Manali) was the perfect Bollywood moment for me followed by a visit to Thiksey Monastery where two young monks were only too eager to show me their selfie skills. Sources of joy are too many in this world: all we need to do is be receptive, like a sponge learn to absorb all the goodness thrown at us.

It was 2015 that epitomised the principle of gain-some, lose-a-lot. While the birth of my nephew elated the entire family, the demise of my alsatian Simba left a void that we are still trying to cope with. Simba was the best friend and companion I never had. Just a few months before he left us, there was a curfew in my city and I was stuck all alone at home with my pets. The curfew atmosphere at home was quite epic: all lazy souls sleeping from sunrise to sunset, with no sense of time whatsoever. Those last few days I spent with him will be cherished forever.

Hoping for the tryst with Life to continue in 2016 with more fervour…

A Very Happy New Year!!

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