The paperman was taking away our old newspapers when I noticed the plate of his electronic scale slightly tilted. I asked him what happened. I remembered a year ago he was beaming with pride that he had saved enough money to buy it. He cleared his throat and said that a few weeks ago, he went to a house to collect old papers. When he had gone back to his push cart to collect some bags, his customer, a grown adult, tried to check his weight on the scale and broke it.
The electronic scale is small for the use of weighing papers and any intelligent adult should have been able to judge that it may not take heavy weights. Not only that, that man did not ask for permission whether he could check his weight.
The paperman had to spend Rs.600 to fix his scale.
I have always been there,
Since I can remember,
Which is a long time,
Than anybody can remember.
Here I am,
Minding my own business,
Growing, shedding, flowering,
Not disturbing anybody’s business.
Some used to collect my flowers,
Some used to take refuge under my shade,
These days, they mostly urinate on me
These days, none take refuge under my shade
I really don’t mind that
Since I’m minding my own business,
Still growing, shedding and flowering
Not disturbing anybody’s business.
I don’t know what I did in this new year,
Here I always was,
Then a car rammed into me and the boy inside died,
Some chopped me out where I always was.
But I’m to blame because there I was,
Since I was minding my own business,
Growing, shredding and flowering,
Not disturbing anybody’s business.
-The Roadside Tree-
All of us pursue something in life, be it materials (a house, a car, bike, laptop), people, ideals, goals and so on. Some may view that as a rat race but ultimately if you find reason to pursue it/ them, and the journey and destination gives you happiness, then those opinions don’t matter.
What sets each of us apart is the intensity of our passions. Books, blogs, documentaries, films, photos capture and recollect such extraordinary passion. Each and everyone should have that zeal to pursue what we wish (I am of course assuming they are in the right direction, without any harm to people, society, self or environment).
I love to hear people’s different Pursuits, how they juggle them with other daily activities and what sacrifices they make. It need not be extraordinary so long as there is an intensity that radiates like an aura.
One of the things I truly understand is that is discipline gets imbibed. I’m not talking about strict rules and regulations that mandatorily have to be followed but aspects that become good or efficient habits to support the lifestyle and journey. Practice, practice, practice. Read, learn, digest. It is the intensity which routs out the boredom from routine and makes life special.
Many thanks to those I have learnt from and I salute you all, though I have not mentioned your names. I learn every day and use it in my life to follow my goals.
As each new year comes, I mark the first day by seeing the sun rise. It has been a habit of mine since boarding school. I did miss out on this when I was in London in 2005 but the substitute was the fireworks at midnight. I missed this new year’s sunrise as well.
On the first or second day of the new year, I have a new diary or writing pad in which I list out my new year’s resolutions. One of the resolutions which I miserably fail in is maintaining a daily account in my diary. I attend to this resolution for the first month unflinchingly but after that it just dwindles. The inspiration was my father’s father who kept small diaries for a number of years. He recorded the sundries even if there were no big events taking place in his life. I remember reading his ’79 diary, a week after he passed away when the family was keeping/distributing his personal things. (To my dismay, his tobacco box went to his brother-in-law who reserved it much before.) He received news of my birth by telegram on 23rd September, 2 days later. He did not jot down his feelings but for me, his mention of my birth was something I cherished.
Another resolution was to reduce my weight and give definition to my body. To some extent, I could get definition but I could never lose my weight.
The easy way to explain the failure of achieving such resolutions is to say that making resolutions are superficial and a fad.
The real reasons are that I never analysed the causes for my resolutions and how to cultivate them as habits. Creating new good and healthy habits get increasing difficult as one grows older. Last year I was quite successful compared to the previous years thanks to my family’s support and my persistence. I also did not set lofty goals and instead decided to take them step by step. I took my wife’s constructive criticism to remain positive and not jump the gun at the cost of my health and work.
I am immensely satisfied last year on the books that I have read. I enjoyed the books I read – mostly non-fiction books. (A good indication that I’m getting old and boring!) I have become attached to minimalism and running, both based on simplicity.
So this year, simplicity prevails and I shall build on the good things I have got going. I am sure that I will find something new and positive that I want to incorporate in my life! I will end up mentioning on the blog also. After all, each day the sun rises and what do we know what that day, month or year holds for us?
I am slowly reducing the number of clothes I own, especially office wear. I’m getting rid of the old ones mainly.
It seems like a good idea to keep an optimum balance of office clothes by having formal shirts in plain, light shades of colours, (no checks or stripes) so that I can easily match any dark blue/ black/ brown trouser, and a tie whenever I need to go out. So any new shirts I buy will be based on this idea.
When I discussed this idea with my wife, she said I was getting old!
Last week, wife surprised me with our balcony. She tidied the area and created a lot of room for having some potted plans. My daughter was excited and wanted to get some soil and seeds immediately.
My wife also cleaned up the study table and we got rid of one old study table. Our second room is already looking larger. This made me feel I was slower than her on reducing our stuff though I do all the reading on minimalism!
I’ve started to read ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’ by Paramahamsa Yogananda. My sister gifted me a hardbound edition for my birthday. My mother gave me the same book in paperback on 29th March 2002. Yesterday I thought if I got the same book from my family members, it must mean I didn’t get their message yet!
I just completed ‘What I Talk About When I Talk About Running‘ by Haruki Murakami, a short non-fiction book. I’ll post my review on the book shortly.
I’m trying to read more books. Recently, a friend of mine posted on Facebook the top 100 essential books to be read compiled by BBC and yours truly had read only 10 books. Apart from my low number, I realised that the number of books I read when I was in school was more than the number of books I read outside school.
My first post was on decluttering and I started with my office cabin.
Every year, we have an Ayudh pooja to thank the gods for the past year and for the future. The priest comes and annoints all the office spaces and equipments. This year it was held on October 16th 2010. Before the pooja, we all clean our working spaces, throw away unwanted piles of paper, keep the files in their proper place and so on.
Thanks to my decluttering earlier this year and maintaining it the same way, I didn’t have to even spend 30 minutes. All my other colleagues took 2 hours to clean up! Awesome feeling because I used to be the last one to clean up having most of the mess!!
‘I do not want India to be an Economic Superpower. I want India to be a happy country.”
– J.R.D. Tata (July 29,1904 – November 29,1993)
Today, this was part of a Tata ad to commemorate their founder’s 106th birth anniversary and was on the right hand bottom corner of the Business Line. It’s also on Tata’s website.
What a wonderful thought from a noted businessperson (not digging into the intentions of Tata for quoting their founder in the ad).
Being an economic superpower includes increasing production and consumption of the country, attracting investments and attention from other countries.
We can produce more goods, lowering costs and the selling price. We as consumers, can buy more goods to satisfy our urges or compulsion. The compulsion being created by bombardment of advertisements through various mediums every day.
But that does not guarantee or replace happiness.