Words are all I have

words text scrabble blocks

Words are all I have,
And words are all I can give;
May it be an expression,
Or be it a piece of advice;
To act or not to, is your decision.

The meaning of my words will change for each,
Based on your perspective and experience;
What I mean to say is not what
You end up understanding;
Yet, Words are all I can give.

My actions are my own,
My reasons for them are different.
You interpret them based on your understanding,
And draw your own conclusions;
Yet, only I will know the true intentions.

My life is my own to live,
Your opinion of it may or may not
Make a difference to my living,
Your judgment of who I am is not me,
Beware, I am not who you think I am!

Advertisements

A Trip Down The Memory Lane (Bulgaria Trip) – Day 1

Normally, she was a “what-if” person, always trying to run different scenarios that could have happened. What if I had gone to Italy instead?; what if I was still living back in India, would I have ever dared to do this solo trip?; what if I had brought a friend along?

Not today. Today, only the days to come were on her mind. Lying awake in her bed in the guest house in Sofia, she kept repeating the things she would do that day and the next few days of her trip. The anticipation of the trip had drained every single ounce of sleep from her.

A familiar tune from her phone snapped her out of her lucid dreams, urging her to get up and get ready. It was, at last, time to find out if the dreams were good enough to match the reality or did reality surpass her imagination.

The first thing on her itinerary was bungee jumping – an adventure within an adventure. Determined to do an adrenaline pumping activity, she had booked her jump weeks ago. She loved challenging her fears and conquering them.

central-park-in-sofia-bulgaria

Traveling towards the pickup point, she had the chance to look around Sofia in daylight for the first time. Sofia was splattered by an unapologetic splash of green – lush trees and parks everywhere. It is then she realized how much she missed the greenery back home!

Bulgarians are usually lazy, life enjoying people – people who have quotes promoting procrastination. Naturally, the city was deserted on an early Sunday morning. Only those people who had no choices but to work on Sundays or catch a train to visit their long-distance Aunts, or walk their restless dogs could be seen dragging their feet along the roads or waiting at the bus stops to catch the “never-on-time” buses.

It could pass for any normal city – with the towering Vitosha mountain at its foot and its European and Communist-style architecture, the beautiful orthodox churches and the cobbled stone pavements. It was a relatively clean city with tram lines running in the middle of the road along with the cars and the street signs both in Bulgarian and English languages – Tourist friendly, she thought!

The journey from the pickup point to the Prohodna caves (Yes. She was going to jump from the top of the cave into it!) was pretty much boring apart from the introductions. You could see a few people already assembled at the jump point and were waiting for the guys to set up the equipment. Well, in her head she wanted to get this done first and then enjoy the walk around the caves and the hiking trails later. And that’s what she did!

She was the second in line for the jump and oh boy, was she nervous! As they were chaining her up in the belts and safety equipment, she could hear her heart racing! “Breathe” is all she could tell herself. Standing there at the edge, ready to jump, she couldn’t help looking anywhere but down and her phobia kicked in! “Look up, don’t look down!” is what the guy kept repeating, but in vain! For a split second, she wanted to give up. I can’t do this! I just can’t. But a small voice inside her pushed back – “You have come so far already. It would be a such a shame to give it up now! You know you will regret this later. And regretting things is just not your style! Just trust yourself and do it!” Finally, she asked the guy to push her. And without warning, she was in free fall – plunging rapidly down inside the cave. You could hear people cheering and clapping for her! But all she could hear is her own scream – she was screaming at the top of her lungs – and the blood pumping into her ears! What an adventure! And how very glad she was that she did it! Did she enjoy it? Hell Yes! Would she do it again? Absolutely! But next time, she’ll jump on her own – she promised herself!

29DB865900000578-0-image-a-31_1434972143136

Back on the firm ground now, she was still basking in the excitement of the jump when she was invited by a Bulgarian family to join them for the sight-seeing around the caves which she gladly accepted. Despite the language barriers, they were so friendly and warm, they literally adopted her for the next hour or so – from talking to her (using the translator, of course!), to making her meet their family-friends who were also there till buying souvenirs for her – until they decide it was time for them to leave.

She continued her hiking around the caves – Prohodna caves known for the two eye-like holes in its ceiling, the eyes of the God. Since it was Sunday, you could see a lot of people around – some just came to see the caves, some brought along rock-climbing equipment and you could see them scaling the walls of the caves, but a lot of people brought along their dogs – looks like Bulgarians really love dogs!

Well, after a lot of walking and talking and observing, it was finally time to go home. The way back was filled with more conversation and a stopover. Despite the restrictions of the language, she was treated as a guest in the country and really looked after well – so much so that she was offered food, compliments, respect and a ride back to the guest house!

Back in the guest room, she lay on her bed staring at the galaxy painted on the ceiling and looking back at the exciting day she had. Yes! She was definitely tired! But, at the same time, she was happy and content.

Tomorrow would be another new adventure and she was looking forward to it!

This is a continuation of the earlier post - A trip down the memory lane – the arrival

A trip down the memory lane – the arrival

Sofia-City-Bulgaria-Grunge-Travel-Stamp-Car-Bumper.jpg
Добре дошли в София, България

Stepping out of the airport, she could feel her heart beating faster. This was it! Another big tick mark on her bucket list. She had finally made it to her first solo trip! As she searched through the small crowd for a familiar face, she could feel the excitement trickle down her spine. “Yay!, I am finally here”, her heart did a mini victory dance.

It was the start of September and the weather was warmer than she had expected. It was 2 am in the morning and the city was fast asleep, unaware of her arrival. The airport had been rather small and dingy – nothing compared to flashy and glorious Dubai Airport she had left behind. Her journey from immigration to exit was rather uneventful.

Once outside the airport, she could see a small crowd of foreign faces gathered outside the airport to pick up their friends and families. People were greeting their near and dear ones with happy hugs and kisses, chattering away in an unfamiliar language. The trunks of the cars were getting loaded and the taxi drivers were ushering the passengers inside.

Amidst all the chaos, she finally spotted her host for the trip to the city center. “How was flight?”, he asked in broken English, guiding her towards the car. “Not bad! Thank you!”. After all, a delayed flight could not dampen her excitement! Slowly, they loaded her baggage into the trunk of the car and started off towards the city where she was to spend the night.

“My English, not good” – was the reason given by her host to keep talking to the cab driver in the native language the whole way. She could have easily pointed out that it was rude to not include the guest in the conversation. But, she was too happy to be ignored.

All she wanted to do was to drink in the city, it’s empty streets, stare out into the night and breath in the feel of the place. She probably even wanted to pinch herself to make sure she was really here! She had finally arrived in Sofia – Capital of Bulgaria!

Bulgaria is a little lesser known country in eastern Europe. Sandwiched between Asia and the European counterparts, it is situated on the coast of Black sea in the Balkans. It has been inhabited since the 7,000 BC and yet it still cannot match its flashy western counterparts. However, like any other European country, it has unparalleled natural beauty – the gorgeous blue lakes scattered all over the terrain, the mountain ranges lazily stretching from east to west, the abundant forest cover and its walking trails, and the numerous caves home to 33 species of bats, out of a total of 35 for the whole of Europe!

Well, it wasn’t really her first destination of choice. But at this moment, she couldn’t care less. All she could think of was the adventure that awaits her for the next coming week…

Well, this is just the start of the journey. The rest of the trip is yet to follow!
This is a continuation of the post - Getting Lost only to Find!
To read the next post -   A Trip Down The Memory Lane (Bulgaria Trip) – Day 1

Getting Lost only to Find!

Picture1.png

“Mom, I am going on a solo trip!” she finally declared on the phone.

It was Friday morning and the start of the weekend for this part of the world. Her roommate was still sleeping and thus, she was huddled on the passage floor talking to her mom back in Mumbai.

The passage was rather small and had no windows. The only source of light was from the window of the tiny kitchen to her right. Opposite her was a small wooden cupboard which stored all the common daily use items accessible to all. On the top of the cupboard, you could see the bottle of drinking water on the right and a small temple with Hindu deities on the left.

She glanced up at the temple praying silently that her mother would take it positively. This trip really meant something to her. It was going to be her first ever solo trip.

“Why do you want to go alone?” came a strained question from the other end.

“Mom, I always wanted to go on a solo trip. And I think this is the right time!” she replied while playing with the wire of her earphones. But in her heart, she knew that this trip is something she really needs. A break from everything going on in her life.

She could perfectly picture herself happily roaming the cobbled streets of some European country and enjoying getting lost. In her mind, she was already trying out the new cuisine, talking to the locals and making new friends.

What more? She gets to explore a new country and learn about a new culture.

“Soul Searching” – she would later tell to her puzzled brother. That is what she really felt the trip would help her do. No worries, nobody to judge her. She can just be herself.

Well, she did have a memorable adventure roaming the streets of Bulgaria while trying to find herself again!

"To travel is to take a journey into yourself" - Danny Kaye
To read the next post (continuation) - A trip down the memory lane – the arrival

The Writer’s Story

Picture1

The teacher was sitting on the desk correcting the examination papers. She had a deadline to meet and thus, the students of the 9th E division were saved from another boring history lecture.

Everyone had something or else to do. A quick look at the classroom and you could see each and every student doing their own thing. The studious ones were already catching up on their homework for the day. And the notorious ones were playing games. Then there were others who were just talking or eating (Yes, in the middle of the lecture).

Far in the corner row, a girl pulled out her sister’s college magazine to read. Yes, this was how she decided to spend the next 40 mins of her free time. The magazine had sections of literature written by the students, awards and recognitions, some puzzles – everything a usual college magazine has.

Flipping through the pages, a poem titled “Friends” caught her eyes – A very common topic. Yet she decided to copy it down thinking – maybe I can gift it to my friend later. She opens the last page of her book and starts copying it down.

Instead of copying the exact poem, she starts tweaking the lines and making new stanzas. And Viola, in the next 15 mins, she had actually written a poem of her own. Was she excited? No. Was she proud of herself? No. In her head, it was no big deal. I mean it’s just some poem. Pretty sure everyone can write one of their own!

Well, she still pretty much thinks the same. Everyone can write stuff. But she wants to do her own bit. There are always people who appreciate it. And then there are people who think it’s common and nothing new. But to her, the writing matters – as long as it can connect with even a single person, she is happy!

“You may not write well every day, but you can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page!” – Jodi Picoult

PS: So guys, I am trying this new style of writing. Do let me know what do you think of it.