Friday, 28 November 2008

I am no news channel

So do not expect news here. I rarely even read the newspaper or watch the news on TV. There. I said it. I have said it before too, I live in a Kenny Bubble World. I don't even have opinions on most matters any more except about myself. Sometimes I wonder if perhaps I took the internalising too far, but then there is no coming back now, does not seem like it. I am too far gone. I did watch some TV yesterday. Idly. Walking away to the kitchen or some place every half hour or so. Tears would well up in my eyes. The heart would go through some sort of wrenching motions. But nothing seemed real, nothing still seems real, and yet I am all shaken up inside.

Anyhow it is today here in Mumbai. The 28th of November 2008. Situation looks bleak and at the same time normal. The city is under siege. But when is it not? Four months of monsoons we expect at least two maybe three days of uncertainty, of beating hearts, of water everywhere, and mobile phone messages to friends You Ok Dude. Yeah I am Home. This Place is OK. Clear. Except that one time three years ago. When my only aim was to drive home and charge up to my year old daughter. I learnt how easy it is to climb twenty-four floors that day (and to drive on even if you are in a zen and the water is up to your windows). I was not even that fit that time. The husband returned a whole entire day later, our hearts thudding, food turning to ash in our mouths. I loved FM radio then because they played my message to him. Who was that that sent a radio message? Surely not this Kenny here today? Then you hear of some religious or regional group or the other breaking chairs or protesting in a mall. You message again. Bomb threats. Yeah I was far Away. There was a freak shooting incident in my neighborhood, which, apparently, houses a shooting range. My heart beat faster whenever I crossed that store in front of which this happened, for a few days. I would move the kid away from the side I imagined the shot came from. No not maternal instinct. I would do it with you as well, am just a nice girl. Deluded and random and unrealistic, but still. That is forgotten now. The trains thing happened. A colleague I met that day gave me information about some young people he knew that lost their lives. I thought about that boy (face unknown) in that mangled bogie and allowed my heart to beat faster for a few days whenever. That is forgotten now. It was my wedding anniversary (or thereabouts), I was desperately messaging and it was not going through. Somehow messages and calls from other people asking me if he was back home, were coming through. I kept a brave face in the absence of any knowledge. He Will be Fine. Has Not Called Yet. Dont Worry. Yes I Will Call Back. The husband finally came back home by 9:30 (I think it was). See, I have even forgotten the details. I was in Boston. I was at work and watched the planes crash into the towers online on some site a friend opened up. That took longer to recover from than this, which happens in my neighborhood every other day. I cried all the way home from the train station in Cambridge that day. I still cannot get myself to drive past the empty place where the twin towers were, where my husband worked for several years, where I have been so many times on the New York trains that I love. That was something of a first for me perhaps. The magnitude of it was greater perhaps. In India we value lives less perhaps. I never heard of Americans evacuating foreigners first or anything, we are stuck in Athithi Devo Bhava perhaps. Its too close to make any kind of sense, it is not possible to view it all with a dispassionate, objective lens perhaps. I am struck dumb. I have no words of solace. I have no remains of positivity to offer to you. I am not even sure things make sense any more.

Last week my friend at my exercise class was talking about life lines. I pointed mine out, it snakes down from my palm and joins a seemingly endless line at my wrist. Yeah well. Perhaps that drivel means something. I am here today.


choxbox said...

have nothing to say either. or maybe i do but wonder if there is point. its all too unreal.

dipali said...

What to say, Kenny? It doesn't make sense, this world.