Sunday, August 25, 2013

What Harry Potter is not

Pottermania .. Potternerd … Howgsmad…

For the “Haves” these words make all the sense there is in the world and for the” havenots” they are nonsense. I personally do not have a grudge against people who have not lived in the Harry potter world. People who have not just written off the HP series, but  have gone a  step ahead and sometimes also written off the people who are nuts about Harry Potter.

For those muggles, who don’t even know that they are one, I have no hard feelings. I don’t curse them with the “Stupefy” spell for their ignorance. I can still give them a chance and can still wait for the day the realization dawns on those souls, that to have been lucky to be born in the Harry Potter Era” and still not reading the epic is like reaching the finishing line and still not winning the race.

Yes, for you this is definitely an exaggeration and in all possibility you will read this post with a smirk, and with a horizontal nod, you will move on to another blog, another book and another life sphere. But I still will give it a try.... Maybe I am lucky and can get a few converts.

And you would be wondering why so much fuss about it..why do I have to enlighten you with something you don’t even consider worth discussing.. Well that is because, I was one of you. Let me take you back to the day my journey to get converted started.

 It was the summers of 2002, I was on a train with a bunch of 5 people of my age, all set and excited to enter a new phase of life… we were going, bag and baggage, to our abode for next two years, our MBA institute. And there I meet this girl, tall, skinny, smart, simple and full of attitude.. “Vidula , my name is Vidula, it is derived from the word “Vidushi” and it means intelligent”, she told me.

And that’s how started the unending chit chats, gossip, sharing, caring not just for the next two years but even till date. It was in that meeting that Vidula, in her highest achievable level of excitement and intrigue, told me about Harry Potter she loved it, how amazing it was, unputdowanable, “takes you to another world” kind of a book. And did yours truly believe her..OFCOURSE NOT… Well… I thought this is just another children fantasy book about wizards and witches …how can an intellectual..”sort of well read” grown up like me like a book like that. That was my first reaction.

But then that was Vidula.. she was not the kinds who give up easily.. so in my two years with her she kept pouring trivia about the series. By that time five books were already in market and our friendship and bond had grown even stronger… The two years flied in a jiffy and both of us were now set for the next phase of our life..she was getting married and I was joining work.

So that’s when I finally picked up Harry Potter… it was my way of telling her that I trust her for life and for me what comes closest to life is books. And right from the opening lines Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very dreams and reality criss·crossed forever.. the reality was a dreamland where everything was magical and the magic of dreamland was real.. I love Vidula even more today, and blindly go by her book recommendations because she introduced me to the “pottermania”.

Well that was my journey and I have countless things to say about what Harry Potter is for me..but here I will choose to talk about things that Harry Potter is not. Even if I can get one of you read Harry Potter .. my job is done. So here it goes…

  1. Harry Potter is NOT a children’s book- It is a book for all ages...Only exception being for the child within you. If that child is still alive, and mind you it has  nothing to do with your age, you can safely say that it is a children’s book.
  2.  Harry Potter is NOT a book about magic set in a dreamland - “In dreams, we enter a world that's entirely our own.” This world is real because it is made of real people who make magic , not by wands and spells… but by love trust, bond, friendship and conviction… It is only in such a magical dream land that “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times"
  3. Harry Potter is NOT a fantasy “far from real” book –As I just said, when you read Harry Potter you don’t read but live in that world. And as the book says “Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?” 
  4. Harry Potter is NOT a onetime light read – This is a book for life… Yes it is.. It will teach you life’s lessons. Two of many that I learnt from this book
  • Your abilities or resources do not determine your destiny, it is the choices that you make in life. “It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities”
  •    Respect irrespective of class “If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals”
    5. Harry Potter is NOT story of an extraordinary boy born with magical powers- Most importantly    this is not a book about a singular boy, it is not Harry Potter, but all the small and big characters of the          book, that make it what it is. This book would have been impossible without the two strong pillars of          friendship and trust. Ron & Hermoine, the undying love of Snape, the experience and wisdom of    Dumbledore, the commitment of Sirius Black, , the devotion of Hagrid, the warmth of Weasleys, the        courage of Neville  and the  ambition of Voldemort

And secondly, it is not the powers that Harry was born with, but what he used them for that made him extraordinary…You fail to recognize that it matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be!” 

Hrrrghhhhh … So I finally did end up selling this book once again…. Well I leave the choice to you …But I love Vidula for making Hogwarts real for me.


This was written for the Harry Potter Festival

Monday, August 19, 2013

Food for the Soul

Those sunny afternoons, we’re walking towards the auto stand, you ask me to keep to your left, the traffic safe side.

That foggy winter morning, we’re going to coaching, and I’m shivering. You stop the scooter, take off your green fleece and give to me.

Those “Everytimes” you never forgot to open the foot step of the scooter for me.

My love for Samosas and your love for me ...  So many times you told me about that vicarious satiation when you saw me eat them.

Today when you are not with me ….  these memories keep my soul alive.

This was written for the Write Tribe 100 words prompt on Food for the Soul

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The joining sword!!

The tribe whisper is on.. An idea started by Ayush .. To know more read here : Write Tribe - Whispering a secret

This is part 6 of the story series. You could read the beginnings here ..... Part1 at Akhils, Part2 at Pins, Part3 by Laxmi, Part4 by Leo ,Part 5 by Meena, Part 6 by Kalpana

Aiyana – the name created ripples in his heart! 
Jamal could not take his eyes off her. There was an untold mystery in those eyes behind the veil, which revealed a lot and yet held unfathomable hidden secrets deep inside. She wore a black bridal gown. Black, the colour of mourning, for a wedding?? Jamal found that intriguing. He made a note to go back to the finer prints of the manuscript for a possible ritual or explanation.
He was about to keep the photograph in his pocket when, all of sudden, his eyes fell on the symbol at the backside… it was a basket with a handle, but what was more disturbing was that cross on that symbol, which was made in blood. He remembered seeing a similar symbol embossed in blue on the scimitar as well.

The case was becoming a maze, so many possibilities, and yet no clue on which line to tread which will lead to the ultimate truth… But then a thought crossed his mind… is there anything called truth... how does truth look in its real form… There is always your truth, my truth, his truth and their truth. The eyes that sees it, or the heart that feels it or the soul that suffers…each have their own truth, their own story.

Jamal jolted himself out of this philosophical train of thoughts… he was the “Logical” “Analytical” detective… and not a “Thoughtful” “imaginative” “Free” author… his trade did not permit him to dwell in ambiguity…he had to take this case to a logical conclusion, decide the rights and wrongs… The victims and culprits… in black and white…there was no scope for greys.

Scimitar – Roul – Aiyana – Triton – Kara – Kruson  - Half eaten plates – Lipstick Marks – “I saw him” – the Housekeeper , the only breathing soul near Qashif…So many clues yet no answer. And then his intuitive-self took him back to the line in Shastri’s file which he had casually read but did not pay attention:

Triton and his clan along with their faithful servants disguise as merchants to allay suspicion and survive....................  
The Housekeeper, the first witness of the death, the soul companion to Qashif…how could whole of his team overlook such an important linking pin. Jamal just knew that the housekeeper was hiding facts, misleading the detective team and most importantly protecting "someone".  For whom was he faithful ..was he merely a servant or more than that.. had he betrayed his master or kept his promise.

Perplexed and lost in thoughts Jamal was about to leave the library when all of a sudden a hand caught him from the back. His heart skipped many a beats and startled he looked back to find Shastri in the room. 

" I did a deeper research about the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs embossed on the scimitar, and it seems, this is not an ordinary scimitar. This is the khenemet Scimitar" Shastri blurted out in excitement

“And that means???” an irritated Jamal asked

“Khenmet, literally means the one that joins. This sword in the olden days was presented by the bride to her beloved on the wedding day, and whoever, she chose to be her partner, the initial of his name got permanently embossed on this scimitar.” Shastri was elated to have done his job well.

“But I did not see any initial on the sword” Jamal could not hold his nerves now. He badly wanted an answer.

“There was…  hieroglyphic script uses symbols .. A basket with handle, represents the letter K. This scimitar belonged to Kruson was presented to him by his lady love on the day of their wedding.

Jamal took out the photograph from his pocket and looked at it again…

It was time to meet the Housekeeper now…


Its your baby now Kajal

Monday, August 5, 2013

A day is not enough!

I have never been very comfortable with this "Days" business.. Its like you have reserved and also restricted your feelings towards a particular person or particular relationship. Whether it be Valentines Day, Mother Day, Fathers Day or very recent Friendship Day..

Yes, I know these days are earmarked to celebrate a person or a feeling more than any other never stops us from expressing it on any other "Not so Special" day also... But after all its a free world, and I have a free mind.. so I have every right to express my opinion ..Right ??? Right!!!

So I feel that these special days, more than spreading happiness , actually are more potent to hurt... OK let me explain.. On any normal day, a person in love always knows he has someone special in his life, and he or she can any time just give that one look or do that little gesture and the beloved would know that she is special and that would make her happy. But, lets take the other scenario, where it is THE Valentines day, where each person, irrespective of his background or situation, is expected to be a part of that celebration. People are bestowed with a never questioned right, to just ask blatantly to anyone, what are his or her Valentines plan. What if the person is heart broken, what if he is not lucky to have met "that" person yet, what if the person whom she loves doesn't know and doesn't want to express his love like all others... Yes the pain can be subtle but hurt it does...

Why just valentines, every time on Mother's day (Not that I don't pamper my mother), this thought always crosses my mind, that on a day like this all those who have been cheated by destiny, and who do not have their mothers in form with them, their sense of loss most definitely gets multiplied. I feel its unfair, one to make the person realize what he is missing, and to make matters worse, also celebrate something he has been denied.

That is why I have personally not been very enthusiastic on these special days, and mostly prefer to  keep low in forwarding messages and wishing. In the process, I might have also hurt a lot of people close to me, who like normal people expect acknowledgement .. It is the "I do" day for all relationships...

By this post I want to tell all those special people in my life that I celebrate them, their presence in my life every day...every day is special because it is filled with memories and thoughts about them. I want them to know that I do not need a calendar reminder for me to thank God for their presence in my life.. In my prayer every night I do that... I thank the Almighty for all the kindness he has showered on me in form of these people around me..who make my life meaningful.

I may not send cards, flowers and gifts when all around them might be getting, but want them to know that in my prayers they are there, like forever. I wish them goodness, health and happiness in every moment of their life, not just on that ONE PARTICULAR day. To my friends, who have been with me through thick and thin, I want to say - "You make all my days special, and if I have to celebrate you, one day may just not be enough"

By the above statements, I absolutely do not aim at taking away the value of expression in any relationship..what I want to say is..why keep it for just one day..Let it flow as it comes...

This post I dedicated to my dear friend Manish, who triggered this thought in me yesterday!!!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Moment of Truth

55 Fiction - My first attempt!!! 

First“Nobody knows him better than me. “
Second “Nobody can love him like me”
Third- “But he loves me the most”
Kush was in a fix…a situation he had dreaded all his life. The Three love of his life fighting for him.

Third –“Papa please tell Ma and Gradma the truthHe could never!

This was written for Write Tribe 55 Fiction. Thanks Vidya for the gyaan.