Monday, August 18, 2008

Silver linings...

Funny that the last post that dwelt on silver linings was written the last time I came to Madras.

This, in my own words is the city of my heart, the city I love and feel an incredible warmth for every time that flight lands on the runway. Irrational and illogical as my love may be, this is the only city in India that I've never lived in that I know localities and roads within. I spend inordinate time looking through the google maps version of the city's layout in an attempt to be as familiar with it as long time Madras dwellers are. I may not succeed as I'd like to, but I sure love the stunned look on my originally-Tamil-but-born-and-brought-up-in-Bombay mother's face when I rattle off routes and directions in Madras. Love it. :-)

And as all raving about good things brings, I brought upon myself the worst kind of jinx. (very becoming would be a post on the strange connection jinxes share with me). I had close to the worst weekend EVER in Madras this time. And the worst thing for someone like me who likes ranting about it and getting it out of my system was, there really was no one to blame. How do you place blame when a series of misunderstandings results in you spending 2.5 hours on a footpath by a crowded arterial road in the city, sitting and waiting to figure out your next course of action?

You don't. You seethe and fume and kick yourself mentally for having rejoiced like you did at the thought of landing in Madras. At sharing that information (pointlessly at that) with some 10 other people at the cost of being laughed at, might I add?

Nothing, absolutely nothing this weekend went as I'd hoped.

But this isn't a post about cribs. (Didn't I magically lead you into believing it was, with 2 paragraphs of ranting? I know. I'm talented like that)

It's a post about silver linings. Through the worst, most disastrous events in my rather uneventful life so far, I've been taught that there's a bloody good reason for everything that happens. No really, someday when I tell you the story of how I've discovered the most happiness and the most incredible friends through what seemed like the worst unending seasons of misery and general bweh, you'll understand what I mean. About silver linings, that is.

Like this weekend, just before I left for Madras, I got in touch with this commenter friend person and realized she lives here and made plans to meet up and spend time with her. All this, 2 hours before my flight took off! And it turned out to be such a godsend!!!

Over and above the sundry factual details like being able to borrow her charger (coz I left mine back home, yes. sheer brilliance, that is me) and being able to go over to her place for human company when all my usual friends were helplessly sucked into last minute plans that didn't involve yours truly, it was being able to spend time with this delightfully positive person who floored me with how easily she's blended into a new life with her husband and his family, and is so keen on "managing my own home" that she wakes up every morning to diligently cook lunch for them both, declining her MIL's offer to help. (Gah. Don't go all feminist on me. Her husband cleans the house every weekend - I'm just trying to point out how happily self sufficient they are despite the chance to hire household help, or even take help from her in laws who live just downstairs.)

I know unmarried friends who refuse to care for themselves, relying on house help to pull through their lives, relying on outside food for sustenance when the maid doesn't come in a single day. Their bathrooms stink and turn brown, kitchens with days of uncleaned leftovers host mega roaches and I'm about to throw up, so I'll stop right here.

Amidst all this, it's just so refreshing to see people our age who don't find it beneath themselves to tend to their own house and health. A, I'm so proud of you. Your family is lucky to have you, no matter what they might have led you to believe (your maternal family, hon) in the past. Stay as you are and bring out the paints and music to boot :)

Some other thingamajings went not quite as per plan this weekend, but in the interest of keeping private matters private, all I can say is, the things that affect us most do so cause they matter so much. And just realizing how much they matter is the silver lining to the seemingly imperfect consequences they may entail.

That, my dear reader, is the profound lesson for the week. Go have a good one. Go.


@ said...

thanks a lot and here is a warm hug for you!

Anonymous said...

So back to S'pore now? Or still 'stuck'?! :-))

--A's other half.

LUCKY said...

wth... why am i not mentioned here??

nutty said...

I am going to take serious offence to a part of your post!

silver linings etc and general sentiment I sort of agree .. for the most part at least...

but the sentiment that people our age who hire help for household chores do so because they find it beneath themselves to tend to their own house and health is really judgmental and unfair! whats wrong with hiring a maid anyway?

It's really the 2 generation old post partition insecurity where frugality was rewarded and if you could afford to spend money on comfort it meant your basic needs were taken care of so anything more was evil and unfairly achieved. Today most people our age live alone work long hours are a lot more stressed than they should be at this age and all they have to show for their hours of hard work is money in the bank. If they choose to spend it on a maid for whatever reason (be it lack of time, energy or motivation) why should anyone judge them for it?

The silver lining is the house is clean and roach free right? :)

nutty said...

PS - didn't mean to get quite so het up about this :) it just touched a (deep seated sort of Roark-ian) nerve I guess... and it was completely off topic from your post also ... sry sry :)

Penguin said...

Wow, Nutty - you really got passionate about that, didn't you? At the risk of hijacking this conversation, I think one of the points Unpred's making here is about the people who do not have the time/energy to do the housework themselves, AND do not have the inclination to get someone to help as well. I fully agree with you about people our age being stressed way more than we should be, but I don't think that can be used as an excuse to live in filth and NOT use the money in the bank to get some help. Don't know if my point came across, but....

unpredictable said...

@ and her half: Am still here in India, but willbe back tomm. Thanks again for being such warm hosts :D

Lucky: Shoo. enough whining out of you. go sit in corner.

Penguin: :) Thanks.

Nutty: All i'd add to Penguins points, is people who HAVE the time, just lack the inclination to live in a home, and so are ok to live within 4 walls and lots of stuff scattered around without finding it in themselves to clean up on their own. Judgmental i know, not everyone can be like that. But judging I am. :)

Penguin said...

You should, at this point, write about your awesome weekend in Bombay instead :-))