This is a typical afternoon – dozed up and laid back. The sky outside looks like a checkerboard pattern – dark and white clouds alternating light and darkness on the patches of land. My mind is wandering in different layers of consciousness of work, home, travel,books and many more – often, it is hard to put a finger on your own thinking so as to ride the train of thought. But, I will still try to form words out of these random and delicious reflections as I peel my mind layer by layer and derive the daily prompt on places – physical and intellectual.
The first layer that resonates with my thoughts is physical travel. Traveling to picturesque Alps – having lunch at a restaurant on Mt. Titlis amidst bright skies, icy wind while browsing luminescent skiers on blankets of snow. Another would be to enjoy a traditional Rajastahni thaali dinner on a moonlit night on Queen’s private terrace in Lake Palace, Udiapur, India after a hearty dose of kathputli (puppet) and folk dance session while light summer purvai (easterly wind) strokes my senses with a rich, feisty aroma of food and culture. Yet another, would involve drinking piping hot coffee in a small cottage in midst of Amazon during monsoon while nature is taking a shower and the color of a thick rug of grass is reflected in every droplet. There could be one where after hiking for several hours, I am seated on a mountain rock bed somewhere in Banff, overlooking the beautiful canopy of deciduous trees and crystal blue lakes in between them and waving to distant gondolas looking like spiders crawling on their web links.
Moving a layer up – physical travel is transformed into intellectual journeys. Here the focus is on my neuron spouses – beautiful world of text and font. I am proudly polygamous when it comes to accompanying good books. At any time of a given day, I can read Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Robert Pirsig, Barbara Kingsolver, Kurt Vonnegut and many more and can voraciously gulp each sentence as soul food and never even burp. While reading, I can travel to unlimited destinations within the cramped space of my brain and only get up to relieve the natural urges of my bodily functions.
Moving a step deeper lies the therapeutic layer of writing – where I sub-consciously dwell most of the time. Here, my frolic concept (at a given time) is nourished and primed into accounts,incidents,stories. It is this venue which lets me discover a pinch of myself. The cerebral projector lays out the characters, plots, scenes to conceive the appropriate brainchild and a post is born. It is magical how any form of art lets you free out of a physical boundary; adding dimensions and layers from everywhere around the universe without even raising a single step.
Then there are intermingled layers related to my responsibilities and safety net – this is the foundation layer in which I can walk in my backyard thinking of lush grass carpets under my feet or be reminded of the crisp, clean view of the Alps while making a snowman in my front yard. This is where the everyday simple meal can turn into a royal cuisine or the wet feeling from a garden hose can feel like an Amazonian downpour. Here, narrating an Indian mythological character as a bedtime story can equally be as interesting as reading my favorite author or completing a crafts’ project for school can require far more imaginative skills than my writing can ever invoke. This is the layer where I travel beyond and much more than I ever can – for it is the simplest and most meaningful of all – my home.