It seems just yesterday that we had a conversation with 2011. Twelve months down the line, 2012 is in queue to disappear under velvet covers, never to emerge. Time, much like its mythical reputation, is ready once again to gallop away on its golden carriage. All that we will be left behind with is smoke. And memories.
“So you live in Delhi. How can you feel excited about going back to that fateful land?” But that’s where my home is! The onlookers sigh, even shake their head.
All Delhi means to them is the nation’s rape-capital. The land infested with monsters ready to jump at you at every dark corner of the road. It saddens me, the reputation my city of fond remembrances has acquired. As a pigtailed, spectacled girl of seven, I remember collecting bottlebrushes every winter morning. Playing Badminton with Mom every summer evening and then dancing with the sparrows on the terrace. How can the city that has seen me grow up degrade into one that wishes ill onto every other denizen?
I remember how the year had started on a rainy note. Interpreted by many to signify a washing-away of old and debilitating ways of life. 365 days since then and I wonder if we have washed away way more than imagined. Have we not washed away our belief in the basic goodness of mankind? Have we not also washed away sensitivity towards the frail, the deprived or the ones who think differently from us? 2013, though you are still in the dark, all I want from you is sunshine. The kind of warmth that reaches to our hearts, unlike the cosmetic dazzle that laughter now seems to be about.
The year gone by introduced me to several new people – with several new ways of thinking. It took me to a multitude of new places with fantastic sights and sounds worthy of keeping away in cold storage. You know, for that winter when grandma will sit by the fireplace and tell a tale to a host of animated grandchildren. P&P too has had an exciting time, what with the constant travel, new readers and much-appreciated support from the ones who have stuck around since its inception. And then, of course, 2012 also took me back to Pune, back to R. I realized all too quickly that no matter how overcast the sky may be, those people in olden times had got it quite right. Love, in all avatars, indeed conquers all. It brightens up your world like nothing else can.
2013 opens with a challenge. I am sure it has many others to unveil as the months go by. The winds of Pune beckon even as I try my best to lap up as much of the Delhi sunshine as I can. Sometimes, this constant to and fro gets on my nerves – am I a pendulum? The packing, the unpacking, the goodbyes and the hellos – no less! I long to settle down into permanence but then, as R tells me, bliss takes its own sweet time to arrive.
I love how this season brims with expectations, promises and anticipation. Though not many of these materialize into what they promised, isn’t life all about hope, love and delight? As 2012 prepares to slip away from underneath the door, I hope the coming times will bring contentment and peace into the world. The sun is streaming in from the window as I write – in magical little rays. We never know. The good Lord may just wave about his sparkling wand… and all that is crooked in the world will be set straight.