Farewell, Ivanios :)

Ivanios was the first option that popped up when I googled “best college trivandrum english”. Sure, I’d heard about it before. But never to the point of wanting to go so much that I’d work especially hard to get in. All I wanted was a decent place to study English literature. 

That google search led me to other things, though. Praises for the department. Pictures of the campus. Descriptions of Ivanofest.

And suddenly, I found myself very willing to get in. Continue reading

Love, for me is…

I believe in true love. And to be honest, people have made fun of it for more than I can remember.

My family names love as the feeling you get when you lead a life with a person they choose for you. My friends decide that true love is what we see in Bollywood movies. My brother laughs at love because he still thinks girls have cooties. My ex, for a long time, tried to convince me that love was a lie- a mere mix of chemicals and other decidedly unromantic things. The senior I admire chose a girlfriend who was nice to him because he thought that was love.

To be honest, I’m still not quite sure myself.  Continue reading

Little fan-letter 

Hey

It’s probably really creepy, this fan-letter coming from someone you barely know.

At least, we’ve talked and you know my name, so I hope you are slightly aware of my existence.

(Also, I’m positive that you’ve caught me staring at you many times. I’m also sure that you know my feelings for you, because my friends are never quiet with their teasings and I almost always blush like a tomato)

Maybe this is a crush? I’m not really sure. All I know is that seeing you makes me happy, and I find myself chasing you with my eyes till you disappear from sight. 

Remember the first time we talked? Your classmate introduced me as ‘possibly the craziest girl’ you’d ever meet, and you looked down, introduced yourself and called me cute.

The whole night I tossed and turned in my sleep, wondering if it was a ‘little-sister’ cute or a ‘little animal’ cute. Even when morning came I was still confused about why I cared. 

Hey, will it bother you if I say that I’ve seen you do things you thought no one would see? I’ve seen you feed scraps to the strays. I’ve seen you pick up papers for someone who dropped them. I’ve seen you see me trip and watch, concerned, till I got up and waved to tell you I’m okay. 

We haven’t really talked much, have we? 

My tongue turns against me when I’m in front of you, and I speak like a drunk buffoon. But you always wait patiently till I finish, and pat my head to encourage me through. 

Hey, I’m pretty sure you saw me as a little sister at the very most. 

And I’m actually quite fine with it for once 🙂 as long as I get to see your smile again. 

Open letter to my mother

Amma,

You’ve always been with me. A constant presence in my life that I could not do without. The one who I follow around at every party where I see strangers I am related to but I don’t know. The person who gives me delicious food everyday, even though I may not fully appreciate the greens. You called me your sweetie, your smart princess. The one jewel you loved over all other.

But amma, when did I stop being that to you?

I used to love dressing up and showing you just so I could hear “pretty” from your lips. But now everything I wear is either slutty or old-fashioned. Suddenly my dresses make me look young, some make me look old and others make me look oddly thin. Some are too boyish, others are just ‘wrong’. Amma, why do I now have that one moment of fear before I show you the clothes I like? And even when I succumb to your wishes and wear something I hate to see myself in, why do you not call me “pretty” anymore?

Amma, it means more to me from you than from anyone else.  Continue reading

Of little girls and the masks we all wear 

Whenever my parents speak of my childhood, they start with this one particular story. I was barely three, and they’d taken me to a wedding where we scarcely knew anyone. They took their eyes off me for a few minutes, and I disappeared. After searching for me frantically and nearly giving my grandma (who was at home) a heart attack, they found me in the midst of a group of kids almost thrice my age. They’d all gathered around me, patiently listening to some grand story I was telling them in baby-talk. All of them came to wave me goodbye when it was my time to leave.

And then they turn to the present me with a sigh, and remark “Where has that little girl gone now?”

I dont know. I like to think that she’s still hiding inside me somewhere Continue reading

Graduation Trip part 2- Chikmagalur 

After coorg, we had an overnight trip to Chikmagalur. Post stopping by a hotel for some rest and a much needed bath, we decided to embark on the singular event we had planned for the day- the 8km trekking up Mullayanagiri hills.

The bus stopped at the foot of the hill, and we were distributed water bottles. I took and hid one, because I was damn sure that halfway through the path all of us would be ready to murder each other for a drink.


The walk started off well and good. We walked on a smooth, paved road, pausing here and there to admire the scenery. It was a beautiful place, with curves roads surrounded by forests shrouded in mist even in the afternoon. Continue reading

Reborn 

I hid myself away from the world

And lived untouched, unloved, unhurt

Barely living ; Yet surviving by

Breathing just to go from morning to night

All alone- hence no one to judge me

Queen of my world, though quite unseemly

Not joyous or sad, yet I existed

There in my realm, life wasn’t twisted

Then you chipped away at the walls I built

Threw out my troubles, washed away the guilt

For the first time, I saw the world outside and

Marvelled at its warmth, with you by my side  Continue reading

Graduation Trip part 1- Coorg 

So recently, my class finally went on our much awaited graduation trip. We decided on visiting Karnataka state, namely three places- Coorg, Chikmagalur and Bangalore. We would drop by WonderLa ( a water theme park) in Ernakulam district on the way back home.

So. Much. Green

The entire journey took five days- we spent 4 days and 5 nights away from home. Most nights we had to make do with sleeping in the bus itself- an extremely uncomfortable task for most, but thanks to my already having spectacular sleeping positions which a gymnast would adore, I was mostly okay. It didn’t take me long to fall asleep either- I would be long out cold by the time the others stop partying and start thinking about sleeping.

That tree, by the way, is painted to resemble a bat

Did that make me miss a few memory-making opportunities? Continue reading

 Messenger Hawk

​The phone rang ten times before he picked up. I was bored enough to keep count.

“Yes?” He sounded annoyed, which was insulting, mainly because I was the only person who gave a shit about him anymore. 

When will he learn how precious I was? 

“Hello! It’s me. I was hoping… is this a bad time?” I made my voice go sweeter, more innocent. People were suckers for the angelic tone.

“Kinda yeah.”

“Oh I’m sooo sorry for being a disturbance.. it’s just..  something happened and… well, never mind.” I faked a sob. People were suckers for thinly veiled grief as well. 

“What happened?”

Hook. Line. Sucker

“Never mind… it’s not important.. . It is for me, but… yeah. It should stay between me and her-”

Her?”

Oh I knew that would get his attention.

“You know who I mean. Your little darling lover-”

“Ruby? That was a long time ago and-” I could hear the disgust in his voice “She’s a bitch now. I could care less.”

There was an uncomfortable silence following that. I allowed myself to wait. Didn’t want to seem too eager- that would go against my whole ‘personality’.

“So. What did she do this time? Did she hurt you?”

Oh you would love that, won’t you? Just another reason to hate what you couldn’t have. So simple. So adorable. 

“I… she told me something…. It hurt me.. I don’t know if she was lying but..  she told me that you hang out with me only to make her jealous-” another fake sob “Is that true?”

For a while, there was no indication of another person being on the other end of the phone but his laboured breathing. I could practically see the gears move in his head. 

“Is it true?” I sobbed again. I was never one to shy away from dramatic effects. 

“What? No. No you’re precious to me. You- you stood by my side through thick and thin and-” his voice broke “You were right about her all along. She was a lying, conniving little-” 

“Oh I’m sooo happy! I consider you precious as well! You’re like my family!” 

“I’m sorry you had to hear that-”

“No. No it doesn’t matter. I wont give much importance to her words anymore. Thank you so much!”

“I’ll see what I can do about her. When I’m done she wont bother you anymore.” His protective tone sent shivers down my spine. 

“I know. I trust you.”

************************************************

“Good morning!” The wench greeted me with a smile. 

“Oh good mooorning, Ruby! You look so cute today-”

“You think so?” She pulled on her short dress. Who did she think she was, wearing such provocative-

“You know, I didn’t sleep much last night-” she sighed, sitting down next to me. I bit down the bile rising in my throat and slipped a hand around her shoulders.

“Your eyes do seem red. Something happened? Maybe with-”

“My ex. Yeah. Tom just messaged me out of the blue last night and-” she sighed again, hugging her legs. “I’d only just started to forget… Why does he hate me so much? I was the one who was dumped and now he’s acting like I killed his pet dog or something-”

I had to remind myself to stop smiling. 

“What did he say?”

“Something about me being a bitch to everyone he cares about. I don’t even know anymore.” Her eyes were tearing up again. The girl would drown us all some day. Disgusting.

She wiped them away and stared at me. “You know, I’m not so sure I should be talking about this stuff with you. You’re his friend-”

I morphed my facial features skilfully to showcase my ‘disgust’ at such an insinuation. 

“Me? Friends with him? Ruby you know you’re my best friend! I’m only with him because our families know each other… I’d hoped you’d understand… I have to please them no matter how much of a bastard the son is-” 

She looked up at me. “Yeah. Sorry. I understand.” Her lips widened into a smile, and I tried not to cringe. “I trust you.”

************************************************

When class began, I observed them both. Tom glared at her, something she returned with equal venom. The two supposedly ‘smart’ idiots had no clue they were being strung along. 

I liked this. I liked this a lot, playing the messenger. Instead of a sweet dove sending words of love between two hearts, I enjoyed being the hawk that ripped them to shreds.

What did I get from this? I don’t really understand it myself. There is a small part of me that fancies him, and an equally small part that hates her. 

But for now, at least for the moment, the fact that I have two people hanging on to my every word- the fact that I had the power to cause a rift between two people who supposedly ‘loved’ each other…. The thought is addicting. 

Was this me being a villain? 

Nah.

This was just me being human.

Well then. What shall I say next? 

My IFFK Experience <

Last week, I was finally able to be a part of something I’ve wanted to experience for a long time- the International Film Festival, Kerala (IFFK). A lot of my friends had praised it to high heaven, so much so that even I (admittedly not much of a film-lover) felt like my life wouldn’t be complete without treading on its grounds even once.

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So first, here’s a little something about IFFK. Its like any other film festival out there- a place for like minded people to mingle and cultivate interest in films of different themes and types. There is also a competition segment where the audience can vote for the films that please them the most. 14 screens were engaged for public viewing and about 13,000 people registered as delegates this year. We were asked to pay 300rs (500 for non-students) to register for a pass that would allow us to enter those theaters that hosted this festival. The cost was pretty low considering I’d have to pay at least 90rs to see one film normally- and here I could watch at least 6 films a day for more than a week! We were lucky we registered as soon as news got out, because a lot of my classmates were unable to register as there were no further seats available.

Continue reading