sometimes things just seem to happen out of the ordinary. The chances of that happening are extremely random, but they just force you to think sometimes of the odds. Like what are the chances that this had to happen and then I had to be involved in it and that it actually left a mark on my existence.and actually forced me to think.
life is selfish and life is tough. I am alone and depressed. Life hasn't been good to me, but I have the support of my parents and my Jesus. I love him so much! I dont know how he loves me so much even though I have been a bad kid.
I feel sometimes that I should run away to an island. When an entire community surrounds you and you are sort of left alone, you just don't know whom to turn to."
This is an excerpt from Grace's diary. I donot know who she is and where she comes from. All I know is that she is in my college, and she feels pretty alienated and undertandably so. I didnt mean to read her personal diary, but since I cannot locate her, I had no choice but to read it to get a sort of an idea as to who she is. It's like a moral obligation now that I have read it that I return it to her. She comes from the north eastern part of my country, and presumably she belongs to manipur.she flew all the way across from there to the heart of our country, Delhi. Well I cant say it from experience since I have stayed in Delhi all my life, but from what I have heard time and again, coming here and making this city your own isn't quite as easy. It's an immense cultural shock for people who have never thought that there could actually exist such a way of existence.
Honestly speaking, I always used to think that one of the major reason the north eastern people feel so alienated is because they too, shun "us" and would'nt extend a friendly hand themselves. But now I have come to realise that it isn't the only way this happens. For them, it's such a new environment and we aren't exactly the friendliest people, so for them to stick with their own is but natural. Yes it is true that their amazing skin, hair and their immaculate dressing style has always made me jealous, but then I regard them in awe, and I am genuinely saying this, most of us just admire them. but we too are hesitant in speaking with them. They are such sweet and simple people themselves! I hardly understand how people think they are any different from us. Yes they are sceptic, and they have all rights to be. We haven't all been the kindest hosts. I dont mean to speak for all of them, but excluding stray incidents, this is how I have always thought about them.
What really pinches me and saddens my heart is that there is just the sense of community within those tightly knit groups and that is about all. What I mean to say is that the north east is like a tiny country in itself, and it's also known as the region of the Seven Sisters. So it is shocking when I hear that there doesn't exist a sort of a "sisterhood" anymore. Again, I don't mean to insult any one's sentiments, but people even from the north east only get along with people from their own region and that is about all. Take Abbigail. She comes from Manipur. She's staying in the hostel. One day, she fell really sick. And mind you, she came to this strange place all by her self and without any friend by her side, so her loneliness and the homesickness was but natural. But what has the world come to? There were other Naga girls in her hostel. And she was outnumbered and alone and no one even came to ask her if she was fine, and on the other hand when a naga girl fell sick, all the other girls would join hands in offering prayers for her well being. I can only imagine how that must feel.
Another thing that surprised me, and made me reconsider my perspective. Yes I know that I believe in god. I have faith in him, but for me, he doesn't have a form, I am being honest. I consider myself to be more of a nature worshipper. Whenever I think of god, I imagine a beautiful electric blue clear sky, the same as I saw in manimahesh about 3 years back. The image stuck and it has been there ever since. But Abigail believes in God, she believes in Jesus. And she really loves him. It shows. It just does. How she has faith that He is going to come to her rescue, and how she is going to get through it all and work hard because he is out there looking out for her. I mostly believe that people of my generation have faith but not a concrete form of it. They wouldn't visit mandirs or churches or such as often as our parents did when they were of our age. My parents are offering prayers at our local temple as we speak. It's not that all of us are atheists or lack faith, it's just that we choose to decide what we believe in. But Abigail, she is almost my age. She has an unwavering faith in god. Me? Well I am not cynical, and I believe there are a million ways to know god and I respect each one. I think it is insulting a person's sentiments if we mock his religion or his way of knowing god. We may not always approve of it, but if he believes that this is the way of connecting with the cosmic, then so be it. What works for one might not for the other, but what matters is getting there and finding peace. But being regular with your prayers, remembering Jesus in your day, and thanking him and being grateful for where she is at in life made me like Abigail even more.
Living in Delhi and then spending abput 8 years in Gurgaon, the mall city of the country, I've seen more malls than stationery shops around my house since I was little. I get people's fascination with them, all glittery and glamorous, but when you see the same expensive things everyday that you can't afford or don't care enough to buy, you start missing the good old shopping complexes with departmental stores and tiny bakeries and small job shops that are always handy and sell the things you really need on a daily basis. I can't exactly get pakoras or golgappas from the mall. The feel and the sensations that follow are usually ruined with the AC anyway. What is the novelty of having a golgappa if you cant ask bhaiya to put some extra teekhi chutney in the end?
So it sort of came to me as a surprise when I read that only last month Abigail visited the mall for the first time in her life and her fascination with each shop knew no bounds. Thankfully I am not the only one who thinks that malls are overpriced and so are brands. She seemed to think so too. She was awestruck and that's natural, but then I realised how I have always taken globalisation and developement for granted for each part of the country. I have just been blessed enough to have so much exposure at a young age but for most people, this is just an unbelievable city. I was sort of taken aback for a moment when I realised that a teenager, specially a girl has seen the inside of a mall at the age of 17 for the first time in her life. It isn't such a big deal for me, but that seemed to me of great consequence how some parts of our country are so technologically advanced, if nothing else, than other parts of the same whole!
There are people who are living less that a thousand kilometres away from us who might be living in a totally different world than us even if we are on the same side of the border. The states might be different, but so are the governments and the facilities. This just openened my eyes and made me take a lot of things that I took so lightly in my life a little more seriously. Life does have amazing things to offer and it would be nice if we acknowledge them now and then.
Dear Glory, I want to meet you someday but I know that I cant' It isnt fair to you to meet a person who knows what is going inside your head. I wish I could talk to you and tell you that you are not alone. The world isnt all out to get you and there are going to be people in your life who will make you want to live your life and maybe even love it. I know that you will learn to enjoy this journey and all the time that there is right now. I just sort of connected with you and I guess this was just supposed to happen. One of life's many mysteries!
Thankyou for making me think. For making me understand.
Until we meet again,