LIFELESS

The girl you see today,
Wasn’t the same before.
She used to be lively once,
When she didn’t need a reason to smile.
For she loved the sound of laughter,
The heady feeling of being full with joy.
But something happened to Her,
That made her carefree vibe die away.
Maybe that thing had a form,
A being who had hurt her somehow,
A human who had a habit of crushing hearts,
Just like he had crushed hers.
She used to smile once,
Openly and whole-heartedly.
What did you do to her to make her like this,
This lifeless being?

Continue reading

Advertisements

Coffee Talkies #6 – Moving Out

Today is Dashami. Pujo ends. And with that, the wait for the next year’s Pujo starts. With only a day left for me to return back, I cannot help but agree why it’s important to be with your family during Durga Puja. But at the same time, it’s all the more sad, given that I know there’s every probability that I won’t be in Calcutta during Puja next year. No, I didn’t celebrate Puja this year, owing to the resolution taken last year that it would be the last time I’m celebrating Puja. Every bit of chaotic madness around, I had initially resented being here. But I guess it’s the Bengali in Me since this girl’s eyes could be found tearing up on the bhashan of Durga Ma, as she whispered, “Asche Bochor Abar Esho, Ma”. After a measly stay of only a week, as I return back this time, for a long time to come, it is mentally exhausting to even think of going through the motions of sadness, homesickness and eventually numbness all over again.

Now that I’ve spent a month there already, it can be safely said that I’ve settled down in Bhubaneswar. So how did I survive one month in this new city, charting the beginning of the next 2 years to come? Moving out was a big deal, and it should be, if you happen to be the youngest daughter of the family and the only one to move out the earliest. Some say, it is only when you move out of your comfort zone, leave behind everything that has ever been yours, to a zone that’s alien, foreign, it is then that you come to realize the importance of your family. It is as much important as getting the opportunity to test yourself in the foreign lands, of successfully surviving in the big world out there. Bading goodbye to an emotional father, was as difficult as bading goodbye to mother back home, which was despite everything a surprise, given that both the Father and the daughter concerned here, are not really emotional beings.

The initial days were occupied with setting up the lifeless room into a room beating with love and happiness, evoking positive energies, welcoming to everybody. Making new friendships and getting comfortable with the place slowly took the second place in the queue. The hectic schedule leaves no time for anyone to get homesick, and the energy-draining classes make you wonder when and how days roll into nights.Becoming an office-bearer, the Prefect of B.Ed batch of my hostel came saddled with a lot of responsibilities and even little time for myself. You crave for weekends to come, so that you can just laze around and before you know it, the weekdays are back again. It is a sheer endless circle of dire survival.

When you move into a new place, there are certain changes that happens within and to You. The social bee in Me got replaced with the homely Me who would prefer staying back in weekends rather than going out for roaming. Independence comes with costs, and this time it was to live on your own, managing to be economical. I don’t know whether it’s good or bad that we are so inundated with tasks, given that though it is overly energy-depleting, however it leaves little time to think about what you’ve left behind.

Most importantly, as always, I changed. The Bhubaneswar Me is so different from the Calcutta Me that sometimes I wonder whether that’s a positive or a negative sign. The courage, the boldness is of course encouraging which was attested by the hosting of the first Mahalaya event in my hostel in the last 6-7 years, on my prerogative. The fact that it was a tremendous success, the fact that I paid my respect to the Goddess by establishing her worth in a foreign land, it’s a huge enrichment to the soul and a tremendous boost to self-esteem in itself.

Calcutta brings along with it, emotions, which is largely lacking in the Bhubaneswar Me. It is as if a new Esh has been born there. It was worrying whether it had destroyed the older Me, but when I saw my heart miss a beat seeing all kaashful-fields, eyes welling up over the image of Home, I knew I’m safe. I’m okay.

It’s just one month in the new city, with many more to follow. I don’t know how I’ll make it, but I hope to do it with every pore of my energies. I hope to make the best of everything that the new city has to offer. I hope to make my family proud.

Asche Bochor Abar Esho, Ma. Asche Bochor jeno Ami Aste Pari, Ma. 🙂
May The Forces Be With All of Us.

Happy Dussehra, everyone.
Shubho Bijoya.

Micro-Tales #1 Strength In Disguise

There’s something about her laugh. She laughs like she’d keel over, laughing and fall on the floor. She looked like the happiest person in this world when she laughed. But she wasn’t really. In fact, she didn’t even really laugh at all. She disguised it all the time. She laughed because she needed to show everything was fine with her. She laughed and that reminded her how hollow she is, that she has to fake her own laugh. She laughed at the whole irony of life. She laughed at the screwup that she was. She laughed because that’s the only way she could control herself. Stop herself from screaming out aloud and going insane. She laughed because she was just a step away from a complete break-down. She laughed because she couldn’t cry. And it was as simple as that.

She had to laugh so she laughed.

Coffee Talkies 2.0 #5 – Chapters

Source: Pinterest

Guilty. That’s the first word that came in my mind when the bitter (extreme one at that, if I may add) taste of my strong black coffee hit my taste buds. Interestingly, that’s also the word that strikes my conscience when I think about Coffee Talkies and how it hasn’t been fed any content since March, which is like, 4 months ago. Sheesh! So I’ll have a quick round-up of each month that has passed by, before settling down to the current month, which is July.

Hectic – I had to submit my Master Thesis. *Mic drop*

Ta-Da! Thesis Cover

Yes, that should quite dramatically sum up, the month of April. I still don’t know how I managed to complete it, but it was god-awful hectic! I remember my multiple drafts getting rejected with every visit to my supervisor and me steeling up, again and again. Oh, just to add (I swear, I’m not trying to boast here, but it’s hard not to be proud when your supervisor is Mr. Zaad Mahmood, who is the first Indian professor of Political Science and the second Indian overall to get a guest lectureship in Oxford University!)

Presenting to you, Mr. Zaad Mahmood

On the day of submission, I remember feeling proud to have the hardbound thesis in my hands, a product of intense criticism yet steel-strong faith. Then came the farewell, which was not quite an emotional event for Me. Maybe because I was too numb. Maybe because the unsettling shock, that there would be no other regular day of attending University, was yet to sink in. In the midst of such ordered chaos, I remember feeling better when the very supervisor, who had been let’s say, quite critical of everything I had done till then, told me how proud he was of my unconventional choices in my life. Farewells are so weird, I tell you!

The Farewell Evening. *sobs*

Mayhem – That’s what the month of May brought along-with it. As it so happened that it was the last end-semester exams that I was to give, before the cocoon of University was to be taken away from me, only to be pushed into the big, bad world out there & rough it out. I’ll say this and I really mean it, the exams were horrible! I swear, I had given the worst exams of my entire University Life of 5 years and it is NOT my fault that the results didn’t quite catch up with my expectations… Oh, well… But that’s for June to own it up!

1. Bachelors Completion, 2015.
2. Masters Completion, 2017.

Experiences – Normally, I don’t get envious of my friends’ lives, but probably for the first time in the month of June, I did. Because right after my exams, when I was supposed to relax (like my friends did), I had to join my office, which also happened to be my first full-time corporate office internship. However, two days into the office and I realized it wasn’t going to be that bad after all! I loved the work vibe of my company, the boss-employee dynamics and most of all, how easily I got embraced by one and all. I had an absolutely amazing time at this company, where I made really good friends, strangers who somehow became so close to my life that living a day without seeing them would have to be a day of some other parallel world.

The First Company Outing

I remember that tensed feeling of a doomed ship, when the University results were to be announced while I was in my office. But at the same time, I also remember accepting congratulations with shaky hands when I broke the news to my the office people that I had stood 3rd in my 2 years of Masters. (Let it go down like this that I had cleared the fact that the results were not in alignment with my expectations. It came way better, actually!)

Then came the break for travelling, which made all the difference in the end. Because as it goes after every travelling stint of mine, I returned, a slightly reformed person.  I had went to Benaras for more than a week and then returned home, after a short visit to Allahabad on the way back. Benaras had been detoxifying as always, adding reward points to my self-esteem, making new friends, proving to myself that maybe I’m not really a bad person after all! *Tongue in cheek* Trust me when I say, my bindi had actually become a representative of me being the only Bengali out there in the community I was staying put and the 70 odd people from the entire North actually remembered me by my name! (That’s quite an achievement, believe me when I say that!) Benaras taught me quite a startling revelation this time that, I probably would never settle down as any other ordinary girl. For my heart has a hippie soul in it.

Benaras!

Allahabad had been fun, with the Tonga rides, morning fresh walks and the Triveni boat-ride! Allahabad chapter taught me humility and how things weren’t to be taken for granted. Which was quite important when I look back now, but it was too late by the time I could catch on to the significance of it.

Allahabad!

Revelations – Welcome to July. The current month… Or at least, till the midnight clock introduces the brand new month of August! July brought along with it a sad news. My internship was about to end. The word for July should really have been Goodbyes, but then August has got it copyrighted already…

So my office internship ended, with tears on my part and sad faces on part of the people who had become part of my life in this two months and were suddenly to become strangers again. I have the bad habit of getting attached to people quite easily, so it had been a bit difficult to say goodbye.

The Company Farewell

I decided I had to get away from my home to somehow avoid that feeling of getting choked on emotions and that’s when the offer to visit our farmhouse came along. I clung to that as a drowning man finding a log and went for a visit to the farmhouse which I had last visited 7-8 years ago. This had been a much-needed catharsis for Me as the farmhouse reminded me of that little girl who had the world in her hands and had been at the top of everything. She had no damn to give to anyone and was the best. I remember running and chasing the butterflies, soaking in the wet breeze and taking a detour to the other part of the town, exploring on my own.

Terrace of the Farmhouse

Returning back to the city all rejuvenated, I decided to go back to do something close to my heart, working at an NGO, something I do with all my passion. It’s been going on like that since then when suddenly a news came.

Something to change my Life forever. And the month August will be the forebearer of that. *insert Game of Thrones introductory music*

Thanks for reading the chapters of the book of my Life called “The Tragedy”. May your life never be unsettled like mine!

GET UP!

Picture Source: Pinterest

You don’t feel good,

Things are haywire,

Life’s messy and so is your hair.

So what, GET UP!

 

Things aren’t as they should be,

Life’s just being unfair,

But that’s how it goes on and mostly will.

So what, GET UP!

 

You don’t have a love to cuddle up to,

You don’t wanna go on pointless dates,

You haven’t felt anything for the longest time as hell.

So what, GET UP!

 

You miss the person that you were,

You don’t like the one you are becoming,

But you just cannot go back and be the same as well.

So what, GET UP!

 

You think you’re broken,

You do a great job of disguising it often,

But you’re the only exclusive piece of gem.

You think you don’t have a life and just survive,

You think you’re losing your mind and heart at sight,

But baby, you are the best kind of mess.

You think you’re alone and forgotten,

You are tired of this world to fight with it often,

But then, you are The One.

 

So get up and sew that broken heart,

Remember to look in the mirror,

Whenever you need to be reminder,

Who you are, the Warrior of Light.

#KFCAddHOPE CAMPAIGN IN KOLKATA

A bright day for #KFCAddHOPE campaign.

Opportunities don’t come along knocking everyday, so when one does pop-up unwarranted, you make space for it and grab it right away. That’s what happened one fine evening, when I got a call from Richa from Blogchatter, asking me to be a part of their core team lead to represent in KFC’s CSR campaign, #KFCAddHOPE in association with Smile Foundation to be held on 19th May, in Kolkata. Now, 3 things must be kept in mind here. Firstly, whether I’d be able to make time for it, with my final semester exams breathing down my neck. Secondly, I’m rather fond of Blogchatter, which is a blogging forum based out of Twitter, holding one-hour weekly discussions on every Wednesday from 8:30 pm. It was a long time since I had talked with Richa, the founder of Blogchatter, with whom I happen to go a long way back and I just couldn’t refuse her, especially if that meant refusing to be a representative of Blogchatter in an event like this. Thirdly, my curiosity escaped its kitty bag and got the better of Me! It should be noted here that I have done my final Masters thesis on, guess what, CSR initiatives! So this was my first real opportunity to get to witness up & close what an actual CSR campaign is all about and so I ended up accepting the offer. The very same day being a Wednesday, Blogchatter held their discussion centering around #KFCAddHOPE campaign and it recorded such enthusiasm and zealousness on part of people, that it was mindblowing!

The Placard that greeted us near the entry!

Cut back to 19th of May. I had reached the venue sharp at 11:30 am, when we were supposed to give our attendance for the event. We were a team of 4 people, which was inclusive of Me alongwith Anindya Da, Anupriya Di and Tanya, fellow bloggers. I already knew Anindya Da from before, having mutual friends and hence association going long back again. Meeting the other two bloggers was quite a pleasure, with both of them, Anupriya Di and Tanya, turning out to be rather sweet people. When I reached the venue Kala Mandir, I’d known the event was to be staged at Kala Kunj, what I had definitely not expected was to be led down into the basement, flanked by bodyguards alongside the staircase for the same! Buzzing with lots of media people on one side, I noticed that the other side of the auditorium was filled with little toddlers, who were from Smile Foundation.

Bolly Actress Tanishaa Mukherjee with the host and representative of KFC, Kolkata.
P.C Anupriya

The event kicked off after Bollywood Actress Tanishaa Mukherji arrived at the scene and was greeted with lots of media going all click-happy. She is supposedly involved in this campaign and thus had decided to grace the event with her presence in celebration of KFC’s #KFCAddHOPE one-year completion of the campaign. She then sat back with the host, who enlightened the audience with facts and information regarding this #KFCAddHOPE campaign. AddHOPE™ is KFC’s global initiative that is creating awareness and raising funds to provide meals for underprivileged children. In India, KFC has partnered with credible beneficiaries like the Smile Foundation, India FoodBanking Network (IFBN) and ResponseNET (Delhi and Gurgaon FoodBanking Network). Together with these organizations, KFC aims to provide 20 million meals to underprivileged children by 2020. In this one-year itself, KFC India has successfully provided 3.3 million meals, and feeds 10,300+  underprivileged children everyday. KFC India currently serves out of 51 locations spread across 16 major cities. According to the Bolly actress Tanishaa Mukherji, she quoted Mother Teresa and said that if even one child can be fed every single day, then there’s a lot of novelty that is inherent in the very act. She calls KFC customers and the employees the real ‘stars’, who have helped raise funds for the #KFCAddHOPE campaign. Smile Foundation, which was present in the event, declared that they’re alone feeding 1700 children per day as part of their partnership with KFC’s AddHOPE™. Though they focus primarily on education, but they believe that education cannot be an exclusive commodity but must be complementary with nutrition in order to bring about any substantial change in the society.

Bolly Actress Tanishaa Mukherjee doing the photo-op with the children. P.C Anupriya

A Q-A session later, all the children present were called upon the stage to do a photo-op with the actress and what followed thereafter was a laugh riot! Even after being coaxed so many times by the actress and host to shake a leg, none of the children were willing to, for they were apparently too busy looking at the media cameras! And when some of the children did dance, it was so cute to find them not an iota star-struck and they just jigged away to the beats to their hearts’ content, dancing freely with the Bolly Actress.

The laugh riot of a dance! P.C Anupriya

With this, the event came to an end and everyone was ushered in for the lunch at the lawns. The lunch which had an all-vegetarian buffet menu, was served first to the children who were made to sit in rows.

The youngest child participant in the KFC campaign.

It was a fantastic buffet and the time spent in the lawns was also a good time to socialize more with the other people. It also marked an end to an otherwise eventful campaign and a wonderful experience!

KFC’s CSR Campaign proposes to better the lives of small children.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Blogchatter again for giving me an opportunity like this and hope that in future, they keep me in mind for events like this again! That was all for today, thank you!

Team Blogchatter for #KFCAddHOPE campaign. (L_R) Yours truly, Anindya Da, Tanya, Anupriya Di

LOST GIRL

Picture Source: Pinterest

She doesn’t cry anymore.
She doesn’t scream or vent her heart out.

She doesn’t do anything,
That could relieve the heart of the burden it carries,
All the time.

She wants the heart to tire itself out,
To get choked on its own tragic feelings,
To fall short of breath, coughing up bloody memories.

She wants herself to get cleansed,
But all she ends up doing is,
Waging a lost war with herself.

She has been left nothing but like a corpse,
A breathing and walking zombie.