Read THIS First ..

Read THIS First..
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Thursday, October 29, 2015

These days...

I'm going to write about how I have spent the past month of my life. That's also how the following ones are going to be like, if things go the same way, that is. If they don't, I hope it'll be better.

First, who the heck says that work life is fun? Perhaps they got the word wrong. Work life can be good or comfortable or exciting but 'fun' is just not the word! I like my job, really. Most of it anyway, if you keep aside the travel time and condition. I get to sit among people who are keen about books and dedicated in their jobs, and some of them know their jobs so well that I feel like I know nothing! 

Nevertheless, the new schedule is anything but comfortable. It is horribly, terribly trying and tiring. First off, it's a six-day work week. I had grown so accustomed to five days' work and take-work-from-home-any-day-you-feel-like that travelling just so far for six continuous days reduces my mind to near-zero (unfortunately, it has so far not had any reduction effect on the body) See? I don't even know what I'm writing here. It's only because I didn't think there was anything else (apart from writing a blog post) that would make me feel lighter. 

I mean, have you even paused to consider how arduous a task travelling so much in the metro would be? Sure, I don't have to change the train even once. BUT STILL! It's not even about the lack of rest one gets because one (that is, me) chooses to travel only in the women-only coach (because with so many women packed together, you cannot get a peaceful environment. Besides, I got to observe really exotic varieties too, but that's for another post). It's the horrible fact that I have to get down at a station in another and, pardon the honest expression, extremely-lacking-in-civic-and-feel-good-sense state, out of Delhi. I don't really hate Delhi as much anymore. :/ 

To begin with, I had two options--taking my own auto from one station, and taking a shared auto from another. Honestly, both are terrible in their own ways. How is one supposed to deal with that on an everyday basis, that too in the morning? Wait, I shouldn't be so pessimistic. I've been managing it so far, and I will manage it. Thank goodness for good people at the workplace who help during the afternoons! (God Bless You. May you never have to travel for work more than 15 minutes away)

Then there are the whole work days, which essentially leave me with barely four hours a day for myself, half of which are spent either eating (because I'm starved during evenings) or settling down to rest. For the rest of the two hours, there's the only program on TV I started watching but which has turned horrible so I don't watch it anymore, there's talking to people offline and online, and well, just staring into space and thinking about life and then preparing to sleep. I know, I could use that little time to do something exciting or useful like blogging (finally managed it after a month, eh?) or anything else. But most days are too mentally tiring to do anything except staring into space and thinking randomly. 

This is how I look like these days
Did you wonder why I didn't mention reading so far? Oh no, I'm not going to not mention it, because behold! The upside of travelling so much and among noisy women is that I can immerse myself into a book and ignore it all! Ha! You can't beat that kind of freedom (although it is sometimes beaten by the sheer number of women in the coach. No one cares about population explosion anymore). So I have actually gotten around to reading the books I never picked up in my leisure time, because it is a very clever way of forced reading. It goes like:

"Read this book or deal with the aunty who's been picking her nose. She's standing right beside you, too." 
"Wouldn't you rather use all your focus trying to comprehend this excessively difficult piece of text than looking up and finding this made-up-like-a-toy girl reading 50 Shades of Grey on her phone?" (No offence to reading choices, but still. Seriously, woman?)

So really, there's little choice. In this time of a month, I managed to read:
1. (Wow. I actually had to hop on to Goodreads to see what I read) Roads to Mussoorie by Ruskin Bond (you know why)
2. What Katy Did by Susan Coolidge (A children's classic; bought months ago from a book-flea market)
3. Moonfleet by J.M. Falkner (A children's classic I had been meaning to read for YEARS! It's wonderful. Find my review here)
4. The Metamorphosis and Other Stories by Franz Kafka (of which The Metamorphosis was the best, followed by umm... maybe three more stories that I liked. The rest were, for the time being, mildly interesting. No wonder people called his texts 'crazy' and incomprehensible. It still takes a crazy mind to decipher his meaning)
5. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (Oh boy. Do read this one. Just DO it.)
6. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame (Again, a children's classic I'd had for a couple of years. I remember always putting it off, so had I not had this job, this book would have stayed unread for a loooong time)
7. Dealing with Dragons by Patricia Wrede (A children's book AGAIN! It's about an unprincessy princess who chooses to be a dragon's princess, enjoys working for her dragon, deals with wizards and gets into fights with them, and finally saves the day.)

My current read is called A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, which would have remained unread for years had I not dedicated this metro time to it. It's anything but short, and anything but a light read. Sure, it's definitely fun in the way it's written--the author's mentioned some of the popular and great contributors to science, and provided details of how someone slouched so much on the sofa that his butt touched the floor or how someone was called a buffoon by another popular guy. Of course I don't remember all those names now. The thing I did learn, however, was that there have been people thoroughly devoted to their work and have discovered such amazing things. What am I even doing in my life? Seriously need to give it a thought. I also learned that if you do find out something amazing, don't be a shy-baby or be secretive, because someone else will either steal your ideas when you are dead (or alive), or will discover it a century later. Then the world (and school textbooks) will remember and credit them for what you did before, only because you thought keeping quiet was decent manners.

Coming back to my month, nothing else that is exciting has happened, except:
1. Looking at three books I had worked on, in print. And what a beautiful print, too! :D
2. A 12-hour trip to Agra, of which 8 were spent sitting in the car. And then realizing that Agra looks good only in history textbooks.
3. Riding a motor-bike just a few hours ago! I didn't get it in the first attempt (in which I ended up riding it as if it were a camel. It just did. not. go. smoothly!), but looking at G getting it right in the first attempt, I made a second, much successful one. 8|
4. That's all. I can't really spend the last half hour before I sleep using my brains even further. They're already exhausted today, thanks. 

I also wanted to mention a couple of things I have not been liking these days. They're more like revelations or things that I have known but those that are annoying me all the more now. One is the obvious dependence on and love for social media, but let's just not get into it right now. The other is the apparent breaking up of some friendships with the concerned people acting like nothing's wrong, while it's quite obvious because we haven't spoken in... months now. It's annoying but it's also sad. What can we do, though? To each his own. If I had the time and mental space I'd have done something about it, but guess what, I can't, and it turns out that I feel like I don't even want to. There's also an age-limit for doing and accepting drama in one's life, I think. 

Anyway, there's a fever and I've been sitting typing this out and I've to get up early for work. Ciao!!


  1. hi,

    Make this New Year the memorable one by celebrating it with Top of the Hill on the most beautiful hill station-Mussoorie, India.

    Mussoorie New Year Packages

    1. Thanks. I've already been to Mussoorie this year. And I've got New Year plans. Hope you get the hint.
      (Why am I even bothering? I don't know :P)

  2. "Agra looks good only in history textbooks" :-)

    Also, the morning metro+auto commute is all set to become even more trying with winter approaching. All the best, Ashna :-)

    1. Ah! Thanks for pointing it out :P It's becoming difficult already.


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