In The Folds Of My Palms I Carry A Temple With Me…

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Sometimes in the wake of trying to know each other we often find our own selves. Things we did not know about our own selves reveal themselves to us. As a part of all the energies radiated by every cell in this world, when our own is lighted, it glows crystal clear. Sometimes clear enough for others to see, but always clear enough for our eyes.

When Erica said she was sorry, that it was her mistake that she lied to me, things didn’t seem that way to me even though they held truth for her. For her, it was her mistake, she had wanted to hide her feelings for Enid from me thinking I wouldn’t think well of it.

Somehow even though we were good friends she lied to me about it, because she was afraid she might not remain in my good books after she told me the truth. And our friendship was important to her, as it had been demonstrated by the lie she had made herself say. So, Erica and Enid really liked each other, but Erica was already committed to Julian. It was this thought that made her lie in the first place. It wasn’t only about what anyone else or I would think about her, it was what kind of person this fact turned her into, that troubled her.

She was a woman with conscience. And she knew her new-found pull toward Enid had no place in a world where she was already committed to Julian. And if she couldn’t shake it from her conscience, she knew I would not support her in this either. And hence, it was this fear of losing the consent of a close friend and aide that made her lie. It would have been easy for her to go on lying, to Julian and to me and to everyone else. But soon after she said those words to me, the guilt of having lied to someone she cared about, a friend, someone who cared about her, took her over.

“Jen,” she called out just as I was about to walk out the door of her hospital room Continue reading

Across the Hostel Gates..

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She sat under the canopy of the starry sky. The grass beneath, softly prickling her skin. Hands supporting her lean figure and legs stretched in front. She would easily pass off as, what you would call, a pleasant sight. Gazing at the night sky, looking at each brightly lit star made her transcend into a trance-like state. Greenday played Boulevard Of Broken Dreams in the background, headphones in place, Jennifer sat staring at the sky and enjoying the cool breeze of the September evening.

The lawn was the most serene places of the hostel with the hostel building on one side, a small gym forming its ground floor; and cemented wall on the other. It was hardly inhabited by girls like all the other places of the hostel. They strolled the promenade that doubled up as the two-wheeler parking, the parking space for cars and college bus, they crowded the Entertainment room, the mess; you could see girls swarming all the nook and corners of the hostel.

Sweet nothings being whispered subtly through mobiles, immersed in their never-ending conversations. But somehow, the lawn remained isolated. Only occasionally girls would sit here around sunset to enjoy the evening coolness.

The quiet and  solitude that the place offered was one of the reasons Jennifer loved sitting here for hours. Undisturbed, all by herself, buried in thoughts. The green of grass and the vast expanse of the open sky overhead made her connect with nature like none other. They beckoned her into their world. Clouds moving in every direction, slowly changing shapes; birds flying finding their journey; the slow changing colors of the seven heavens; it all looked like a beautiful painting. Like a love-knit song. A poem she could sing again and again. It was splendid, and she had found herself making her way to the lawn more often since the past few months. Like magically synchronized pieces of a puzzle, the blissful essence of everything beautiful life could offer, was showered into her lap.

She felt amazing knowing how people around her made her life worthy of every possible suffering she might have to endure later when they parted. She loved her friends. Sharon, her room-mate; Ivy, the best girl-friend she could ever have; Giselle, her soul-sister and Amanda, the silly nitwit, she couldn’t see her life complete without any of them. And then there was Adam. Adam had lately become the center of this beautiful universe for Jennifer. There was nothing more she could ask for from God, not at the moment at least.

It had been close to an hour since Jennifer had found a clean patch and reclined for her ‘Me-time’ as she called it. She was deep in thoughts when her cell phone beeped. It was an SMS from Amanda asking her where she was. Jennifer realized it was too late, the hostel gates would shut down soon, she had to hurry if she wanted to go out with her friends. Continue reading

Phone Files

Phone Files

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Mrs. Wondorf had been really worried about her son.

It seemed like a very very long time back that her only son had been diagnosed with Schizophrenia. Her husband and she did everything in their power to bring their son back from the cruel vices of the abnormality that he suffered from. They took him to the best Psychiatrist and got him treated at the best known hospitals. The fact that he was in his late teens, only made it all the more worse. It was difficult for him to understand it all. To accept that he was mentally ill. Especially when everything seemed so normal to him.

“If you talk to God, you are praying. If God talks to you, you have Schizophrenia.”

It is the greatest disorder of the youth, doctors had told them. Affecting bright and highly qualified men and women in their most productive and youthful years, the disorder thwarts their ambition and goals in life. Schizophrenics tend to keep aloof and shun social contact. Rarely do they get violent.

It denotes a severe and complex mental illness wherein the patient loses the ability to think and behave in a normal way. The patient lives in a distorted reality often unaware of his or her condition. They become delusional, their perceptions becoming disoriented. They start living a life full of firmly held, but false beliefs giving way to an abnormal behaviour.

But all that was a thing of the past. All that had happened years ago. With the extensive therapies, sessions with the expert psychologists and support of their family, Ashton had become normal again. He had been living a full peaceful life ever since. He had completed college with good grades. He made friends. He had an ambition he wanted to fulfill.

There was no reason for Mrs. Wondorf to doubt her son’s  mental condition now after all these years. But somehow she couldn’t shake away the feeling that something was wrong. Something had changed in the past few weeks.

“The last time I saw him he was tall and burly with average looks – one of those people you notice, but your attention is not really pinned down on them for long. Moreover the fact that he was hardly ever verbose, made it difficult to know him more or engage in a conversation with him.

It often happens that you like someone, but you don’t give much thought to it. You’re content in just knowing them. You have other, more engaging people around you to make you forget of any inkling whatsoever, that you might have felt towards such people. But then, when you find yourself interacting with them, you realize there was scope for more. Your interest is beheld in them. They surprise you. And you want more of them.

It would be unfair to call this an attraction or a major crush. You meet someone, you like them for whatever reasons, and irrespective of whether you become good friends or not, irrespective of whether you see each other often or once in years at some common friend’s birthday party, the admiration stays. And if you’re lucky enough to get to spend time together, the admiration gives way to a more solid adoration.

And that’s exactly how I feel about Ashton.

I hadn’t seen him in more than two years. But having spent the past one week together, chatting, talking and reconnecting made me feel like I always knew we’d make great friends. One thing that I really liked about Ashton was the way he smiled- an almost embarrassed, shy and utterly cute smile that made him pink in his face, especially when he would be teased about something.

The humor was always reflected in his eyes. As if he knew better. As if he knew what went through our heads when we teased him and a witty remark played in the background of his head, the privilege of laughing at which, he only gave himself. I’m sure every girl with the slightest sense of wit, would really like him, if he wanted her to.”

Ashton was so engrossed in reading the mail that by the time he finished with it, Continue reading