Musings On A Saturday

A normal day starts with the ring of the double alarm set in my mobile, which I first set to ‘snooze’ and wake up with a lot of effort on the second ring. Half an hour later I settle down in my corner of the bed with my usual mug of hot beverage, most of the times it is Horlicks and tea/ green tea, coffee occasionally. I am trying to cut down my caffeine intakes. I love sipping these lazily while reading emails, replying to Whatsapp messages, looking through my Facebook newsfeed, or just browsing through the net about a certain object that must have piqued my curiosity somehow. If not any of these, I just read a few pages of a novel, reclining on the wall near the window. Mornings are the best time of the day. I love this routine.

I am currently reading ‘Norwegian Wood’ by Haruki Murakami. About 100 pages through, it is now a bit melancholic, sad. He describes everything as if it is the most natural and usual thing in the world- even death. I mean, yes it is, yet he doesn’t prepare the reader for what is about to come in the lives of the characters, just puts forth the facts as straight, plain fact. It is kind of unusual. Like, for example, he would describe three friends and their lives together- all the fun, merry-making, responsibilities or the lack of them, awkwardness, growth etc. and suddenly in between there will be a sentence –‘this was about a week before he committed suicide’- I mean you wouldn’t have expected this at all and it would be so sudden, that you would just stop reading and wonder. Life is sudden and unexpected, as is his narration.

And there’s so much of symbolism in his writings- he uses wells, fireflies in the lives of the characters to bring out so much more- profound thought, beautiful analogies, and complexities of the human mind. I am truly enjoying reading it. Love his narration. It’s like he brings out so much of the extraordinary in simple words, simple sentences. Extraordinariness in simplicity. :)

What more?

I had bought a book ‘India's GreatestSpeeches’-compiled by Nitin Agarwal from the December book fair. Yesterday I read a chapter from it. Mahatma Gandhi’s speech- at Banaras Hindu University in 1912. I haven’t read any books about the Congress, the Muslim League, and the atmosphere then prevailing in the country during the pre-independence times. I had always thought that I could not understand or relate to the magnitude of it if I read these books, but now I think I can- I think I am ready to read such kind of books and enrich my thinking. Reading Gandhi’s speech made me think about it. He talks about the importance of our mother tongue, why we should master in it and uphold it, about education in our own language, about self-government, cleanliness and sanitation, about the importance of farmers, about the ongoing anarchy and riots- about the then atmosphere of suspicion, lack of mutual trust and love among the countrymen- mostly about what we need to have to successfully have self-government.

I should now get on with my day- the only holiday I have in a week. :) Happy Weekend!! Happy Musing!


Queeristan by Parmesh Sahani

  Queeristan (Amazon Link) Thanks to Audible Free Trial I listened to this amazing non-fiction on LGBTQ inclusion in Indian workplaces. Author Parmesh Sahani identifies as gay Indian, working closely with Godrej higher management and employees for years to create an inclusive workplace, both legally and in spirit. This book is a result of those years of experience, research, collaboration with individuals from difference spectrum of the society and organizations who has successfully transitioned into a queer friendly one.   Indian history is inclusive. From the Khajuraho temple architectures, to Konark to the Rig Veda, there is existing proofs even 2000 years ago of Indian inclusiveness of queer. It’s the draconian British law that criminalised it, which was scraped in 2009, came into effect once again following a sad judgement in 2013 and eventually was scraped off for good in 2018. I am in awe of the lawyers who fought this legal battle- colleagues and partners – Arundhati Katju

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