The act of leaving home

Home is what you call your roots. The place that shields  you, nurtures you, comforts you – that, my dear, is your root. That is who you are. The place, the people, everyone, and everything around you, make you. So it gets difficult to detach those overt and covert, subtle and obvious strings that you so carefully nourish for a considerable amount of time of your life, when you leave your city. You are probably not intending to detach your ties literally, but the possibility of a physical proximity diminishes. A part of you remains there. A part of yourself is carried to the new place where you plan to settle for the years to come. The new city may welcome you, be all kind to you, but you can never ever call it home. A string constantly tugs you at the heart, to come back.

This city has given me a lot, has taught me things – how to laugh, how to live, how to fight back; this city has always been a comfort zone – a place where I can always lean on when I’m too exhausted, scared or scarred to think of anything else. The nooks and corners of this place has always haunted me. Its old charm, the grandeur, the must, the dust, the heat, the rain clogged streets, the chaos, the colour – I am going to miss it all.

This city knows about my mischiefs, midnight pranks, endless chatter, silences, lonely strolls, guffaws with close ones, sweet nothings, falls, and efforts to rise again. It knows a little too much about me to break its trust.

‘This city knows about all my firsts;

And the more I try to run away from it, it closes in upon me’.


Fleeting thoughts…

There’s something really really wrong with people. Yes. “Wrong” is the word. People are becoming really passive. A growing apathy, like a worm, is eating our heads.

We hear something wrong, we see wrongs happening all around us, and yet remain passive. Maybe we post something on facebook, or tweet something, to voice our opinion against injustice (and of course, we need to get more likes and comments than others, so we have to say politically correct stuff that we mostly don’t follow in real life!) We don’t actually do anything in the real world. We don’t even try to make a difference…

We are bombarded with so many distractions in the form of imageries via media; we get to know too many things all at once. We come across disturbing visuals that might force us to think; but, honestly, for how long? We know so much, yet not at all indepth. We don’t think too long on one issue. Too many things are at hand that forbid us to ponder upon just one.

I came across a post that went on somewhat like this –

Religious terrorists are killing people.
State perpetuated terrorism is killing people.
And atheist terrorists are posting scientific journals online.

How can we be this passive? There’s this growing depoliticization of masses via media and social media. One spends so much time in trying to know what is happening in others’ lives that s/he fails to see through things.

For e.g. during the Indo-Pak world cup match recently, my ‘news feed’ on Facebook was overflowing with memes suggesting how ridiculous it is for the people of Pakistan to even have a claim to victory against India. A person I know even made a conscious statement like ‘Pakistanis are born terrorists’, implying that they have absolutely NO right to win!

Unfortunately India won, leading to flooding memes on Facebook; the newspapers the following day were filled with headlines glorifying India’s win. The excitement of people, all those headlines, all the sound of crackers, all those posts made me wonder, has India actually won the World Cup? It hasn’t, right? Someone then pointed out, ‘who cares about World Cup immediately! At least India has defeated Pak! That was the most important concern.’

But how many did actually think that all those posts, all the glorification of ‘Indian victory’ were racist? It was just for ‘fun’, wasn’t it? ‘Don’t think too much, these are jokes after all’! But how else does a feeling of nationalist superiority set in? As I saw, the game didn’t remain a mere fair match between two nations, but much more. It transcended to a fight between nations who are instilled with hate for each other. And this hate culture is perpetuated through circulation of ‘mere’ jokes/ memes.

In short, are we seriously talking about things? Maybe via social media we can reach thousands at one go. But who remembers us? And how long are we remembered? It is like a never-ending virtual space gaping at us like a black hole. You love to be liked by thousands who are not really concerned about you!

But do we think? Or do we go with the flow?

I think we still choose the easier second option.