Tuesday, December 8, 2009


This is me. This is me eating bread. I close my eyes and hear Shreeti informing me, ingenuously, that there’s cold rice in the fridge, if I want some. I’m way past strangeness, I know. I open my eyes and I’m back here, on Europa’s horn, dipping bread in butter, yes, dipping it alright. Alexandra does not agree with what I’m doing, as I know very well. But what she wouldn’t give to be here eating this soft, fluffy French bread with this fatty, authentic butter, this I know too.

I am on the fifth floor of an apartment building which we will leave soon. We live close to the airport and I often hear planes passing overhead, they rush with an unbalanced sound around them, as if the sky’s vibrating and they’re struggling to equalize. In the dark it is a tickling sound, as if it’s me who’s leaving, safely, so I imagine myself on my way to something and I relish the thought, even though I don’t really like to travel. But in the day time the arrival of the planes reverberate in quite different tones. There is a primary school next door and our balcony overlooks the school yard, where children play during recess and cheer loudly, with infantile sounds and merriment. If you don’t know what they are, the planes sound like waves. Ripples of water coming with elan, breaking against the shore, fragmented in smaller and smaller waves that abate slowly. The laughter of children overlaps with this ambiguous noise and there are moments when I could swear that the beach is right outside the window. Children are playing in the waves, the sea is prodding the shore. It reminds me of Rollercoaster Tycoon, that marvelous addiction I managed to debar myself of, the guests yelling in awe and wonder and the aquatic rides doing their number with jazzy, mechanical sounds. So this is what I hear when I sit here eating bread.

Ever since I failed the NaBloPoMo challenge I’ve been wary of this blog. It’s become the protagonist of my nightmares. It chases after me, catches up and beats me up. Could I be seeking more sources of validation? Could I? Every thing that’s convivial’s sooner or later infected with seriousness and here I am, one more thing I have to worry about. I wish I’d bring this back to where it was only a place of thoughts, a desultory collection, when nobody read what I wrote, when I didn’t start sentences with “My blog...” Some light things are better just being left light. Did I even understand the concept? Could I be taught?

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