Monday, 11 November 2013


This is a fiction for write tribe's HEMINGWAY THIS WEDNESDAY.
The task was to pick one or all of these quotes from Hemingway and weave it/them into a story, a piece of non-fiction or a poem even.

“There’s no one thing that’s true. It’s all true.”   (For Whom the Bell Tolls)
“Never to go on trips with anyone you do not love.”   (A Moveable Feast)
“You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another.” (The Sun Also Rises)
“When you love you wish to do things for. You wish to sacrifice for. You wish to serve.”   (A Farewell to Arms)
“When you start to live outside yourself, it’s all dangerous.”   (The Garden of Eden)

The following is my attempt: a fiction based on all the given prompts.

Srikanth was advised to go to some place far, away from where he lived now. His nerves were not in their best form. He needed to get away from memories. Dr. Naidu, his psychiatrist had recommended him Kasoli- a hill station far away from city life. Amidst the sea of green trees with various flora, Dr. Naidu thought Sri would be just alright. Dr. Naidu was wrong. You can’t get away from yourself by moving one place to another.

Wearing his favorite sky blue shirt and blue denim jeans, Sri was driving past the lush green orchids, drinking the serene beauty with his eyes. The giant mountains, proudly flaunting their crown of snow; the tall pine trees trying to grasp the blue sky; and the sound of the divine silence. It was like a paradise. Sri passed by a deer and a doe and saw a small wooden cottage by the side of a brook. Dr. Naidu has booked the place for his stay. It was beautiful. A short, bald man in his fifties came to Sri and greeted him.
“Namaste Saahib. My name is Krishna Nath. Tourists here call me Kris. I am your cook cum guard cum caretaker.” He said with a smile.
Sri nodded.
“Let me take your luggage.” Kris took his luggage out of the car and went in the cottage. A black raven was staring at him with its eyes blood-red. It cawed continuously.
Something is not right. Sri thought and went inside the cottage.


After a hot water bath at the cottage, Sri took out his car and went on to explore the surrounding scenarios. Just as his car passed a small stream of river, he heard a sound. A whisper: “Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.” With the sound of screeching tyres the car came to a stop. Sri was terrified. He looked around and saw nothing. Then his eyes met a scene which made his stomach churn inside out. It was the same doe and the deer he saw when he entered the village. But the scene he was seeing now was unbelievable. The doe was eating the deer’s flesh. Its face covered with red blood of its partner. Sri felt like puking. He wanted to go away as soon as possible. He turned on the ignition; put the 1st gear pushed the accelerator. The car wasn’t moving. He applied full force on the accelerator pedal. NOTHING. He left the car and dashed his way out into the woods.


He ran and ran till he could. When he was all out of breath he found himself near the cottage he was residing in. He went in and found Kris sharpening a knife on a stone and mumbling something to himself. Sri listened carefully and was terrified.

“I will kill him. I will kill him for you. When you love you wish to do things for. You wish to sacrifice for. You wish to serve. I will serve you. I will sacrifice him for you. For our love.”

Sri saw a small picture placed before Kris. It was his wife’s photograph.  Without saying a word he moved out of the cottage quickly. As he turned, blood drained down his face. He was sure he was dreaming. 

This can’t be true. He thought

 What he saw was a man in late twenties, with sky blue shirt and blue denim jeans. Sri was seeing himself. It was like the image from the mirror jumped out into the real world and is standing before him.

“Ww..who are you?” a terrified Sri asked.
“I am Srikanth.” Came a chilling whisper that made the hair on his back stand.
“It…It cccan’t be. I…I…I am Srikanth.” Sri noticed he was crying.
“I know. I am you and you are me. It’s dangerous, you know?” replied a whispering shriek.
Sri managed all his courage to ask, “What… What is dangerous?”
“When you start to live outside yourself, it’s all dangerous.”
That was the last sentence Sri heard before everything got dark and silent.


A week after the incident, Sri opened his eyes and stared at the white ceiling fan. He looked around and saw beds with white sheets. He knew he was in hospital. He remembered what had happened to him but shrugged it off as a dream. Whatever it was, his conscience told him, it just can’t be true. It was a mere dream.

Dr. Naidu entered the room with another doctor by his side. He looked familiar. He was bald and in his fifties. The entire incident came crashing back before his eyes. The man resembled Kris, the caretaker at the cottage. Krishna Nath. Sri was sweating, his eyes rolled up and he fainted again. Dr. Naidu showed no surprise. He knew it was normal. The report in his hand read:

Name: Srikanth Rao
Age : 29 Yrs.
Sentenced to 10 years of rigorous imprisonment for murder of his wife.
Suffering from:  Schizophrenia and Hallucination.


Sri was standing beside Dr. Naidu. He can see himself deep in sleep, his body lay on the bed. He saw the black raven with bloodshot eyes staring at him and cawing continuously. He heard Dr. Naidu say to the other doctor:

“He told me about some caretaker named Kris Nath. You know, when you jumble up the words it becomes Srikanth. He told me he was hearing voices and that everyone was trying to kill him. Again, a common symptom of schizophrenia. Poor Sri, he thinks it is something supernatural. He is wrong. The truth is so simple. It’s all in his mind.”

Standing beside Dr. Naidu, Sri smiled a sinister smile. He can see his unconscious body still lying on the bed. He knew Dr. Naidu couldn't see him. He can only see his limp body on the hospital bed. The raven cawed for one last time and flew off the tree. Dr. Naidu froze with fear as he heard a whisper.

“The truth is never simple doctor. You know why? Because there’s no one thing that’s true. It’s all true.”

Points to ponder:
1. Is the whole story only from Sri's point of view and therefore is just a dream/hallucination?
2. Why did Sri turn against his own consciousness? [If you support the 'supernatural is real' theory.]
3. Was Kris Nath real or Sri just pictured him out of the other doctor and turned him into imaginary caretaker?
4. What is the TRUTH?

Saturday, 9 November 2013


This post may be a week old but I was busy with the Diwali After-effects.

Diwali has always been my favorite festival. Apart from crackers and sweets, flames of earthen lamps make my heart beat faster. Being in a joint family where every family member get together on this occasion, it becomes in the true sense "THE FESTIVAL".  The beautiful light, the ambiance they produce is truly indescribable. Here are some of the pictures I took from my cellphone.


Every corner of the house immersed in LIGHT.
And then the house glows with the hues of flames.



Then its LIGHT LIGHT LIGHT everywhere.

Saturday, 2 November 2013


I seldom write personal experiences. The inspiration for this post is Parama Ghosh's blog - potpourri. A few days ago she wrote a beautiful piece titled MONOCHROME. This is just an attempt on my part to try something new on this auspicious occasion of Diwali.

DISCLAIMER: The incident took place on 31st October. That's when the birthday was. It is being posted here today because of technical problems. (You will find many such problems below. So enjoy). There is no intention or motive to defame our beloved language "ENGLISH". The instances of text messages in acronyms (eg. u [you], m [am], txt [text], cm 2 me, etc.) are purely for the sake of reality. Some might do it for "Koolness". I do it to save word limits and time. We do sometimes want words to be typed quickly on a cellphone. A wise man once said: "Feelings matter, not words." Enough of disclaimer. Let's start with an awesome quote:

"Some don't believe in God. Some are devotees. I am neither. I just like to blame Him for everything."
  -- Shreyansh Chouradia

It seems more than just a coincidence when you tread back the memory lane and think of how some people enter your life and become so important. Without any reason. You meet them and you have a feeling; a 'something' that tells you that he/she is special. No I am not talking about my girlfriend.  I am talking of a girl very special to both me and my girl friend. We call her Rupa di.

That 'special someone' had birthday. I set the date on my cellphone's planner and then waited for the day. 31st October. Ok. So, I had plans.

1.   To wish her Happy B'day right at 12.00.
2. To send her gift.
3. To surprise her with the above gift.

But then, that sadistic creature we so lovingly call GOD had different plans. Plans to ruin my sacred plans.
Now I shall tell you how Mr. GOD ruined my plans.

Plan no. 1 - WISH HER RIGHT AT 12.00.

Cliché as it may be, it is now a universal protocol that you must wish a person close to you at 12.00.
I looked at my watch and became ready. I took a warm bath and waited for the hands of the clock to embrace each other at 12.00

11.40 pm:  I composed a birthday message.

11.55 pm: The battery died. Shit!
I plugged in the white, short-tailed charger of my galaxy note 2 and waited.

11. 58 pm: The cellphone had 2 % battery. Enough to send a message and place a call.

11.59 pm: I touched the cellphone's screen and started searching her name in the contacts. Found it and dialed the number. A beep and nothing...
I dialed again and found out there was no network.

The clock struck 12 and then 12.15 pm. After a good 15 minutes I called her. The number was busy. That was obvious. I sent her the message I had composed for her and then started searching on the internet for floral services for delivering gift.
That marks the end of our plan no. 1: WISH HER AT 12.00


Plan no.2 : TO SEND (place order) HER GIFT.

After searching long on the internet for the gifts and flora I selected a package, entered her address where it was to be delivered and proceeded to 'net banking payment' option. After a few minutes I was staring at a blue and white site. The SBI homepage. It begged me for logging in and I obliged.

*invalid username or password*
I typed again.

*invalid username and password*

*invalid username and password*
*Due to three unsuccessful attempts you have been blocked for the day*

I knew my account was hacked. So was my plan no.2 : SEND HER GIFT.


Plan no.3 : THE SURPRISE.

Okay. So, my account was hacked.  I wasn't concerned because it only had a sum of five thousand rupees. Now what? 
"Message your girlfriend." Said an inner voice. Though we were taking a silent break from each other because of last night argument, I thought I should message her and ask her to pay for the gift now. I shall pay her later.

I picked up the phone. The battery and network bars both were full. I typed the text in a hurry as we all do, setting fire to the pyre of grammatical rules :

*u alrdy knw its rupa di's bday. I wnt 2 gv her surprise. Plz gift her smthng frm net. My sbi bank accnt hacked.*

And I touched the send button. This marks the ruining of my last plan.
Plan 3: TO SURPRISE HER. How you ask?

When I clicked the send button, my cellphone displayed the following text:
*Sending message to Rupa di*

I have mistakenly sent the message to our very own birthday girl. I could not cancel that message. Like an arrow from a bow it was gone. 
A beep. 
Even the technology mocked me, I thought as I read the delivery report. *message delivered to Rupa di.*

Now, she knew everything: from ->my plan to surprise her-> to my financial crisis.

Anyways, I forwarded the message to my girlfriend too so as to get some help only to get the reply : 
*k. But plz u select the package. I m busy.*

My anger rose and I replied:
*Dnt worry. U work. I shall manage.*

I was angry. I didn't manage anything. I slept off.
Then, after an hour I got up from my sleep from a ping. I read the message and came to know that my girlfriend has placed the order and paid for it. 

No, its not the end yet and so everything won't be right just yet.


She also told me that our beloved birthday girl (Rupa di) was leaving for home tomorrow morning and she won't be be there to receive the gift.

I was angry. Very angry. 

1. With my girlfriend, for no apparent reason. 

2. With the telecom companies, whose dogs are better at following you than their networks.

3. With the guy who hacked my account and made me stand Below the Poverty Line. 

4. With God who was enjoying the twists in the story just like you. 

I felt helpless and frustrated. I put the lights off, let the darkness engulf me. I drifted to sleep again.
The next morning I woke up by the sound of the message tone. Feeling groggy, I put on my glasses and with drowsy eyes I read the message:

*I am glad I cancelled my journey when I came to know about your gift. Thank you, thank you, thank you for the lovely gift. I m glad I received it myself.*

I sighed. A sigh of relief. My lips curled contently as I muttered in a low whisper:
*Thank God.*


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