Dreams

My Trip to the Old World Museum

Old World Museum

Today, I went on a trip to Old World Museum with my dad. After we had our bags and oxygen cylinders examined, we went into the main exhibition building. It was a huge building with wood veneer, which dad said is like fake wood. The ceiling was made of thick plastic polymer which was designed to let in less light to resemble the brightness and temperature of sunlight years back. On the walls were 3D printed plastic animals and plants. The birds were mechanised to move like the real birds. The plants also moved slightly in the breeze generated by the large breeze system which created a small breeze inside the building. But dad told me the birds and trees moved much differently than the replicas. It must have been amazing to see these machines in real life moving from tree to tree, place to place without beings connected to a battery or socket.

I can only imagine how amazing it would have been for people to be able to walk around without carrying such heavy oxygen cylinders and feel the surface of these trees, animals and birds. Next we moved to the Oceanic Exhibition. We saw more machine animals and painted plants and coral reefs. There was even a modern wave machine that made waves on the replica ocean to look like waves on actual oceans back when oceans were still around. Dad used to tell me stories of how he would go to the beach and feel the wind on his face, the sound of waves and seagulls. Me and my friends never believed him. But if it is true, I wish I could see all this and feel ocean waves touch my body as I move through the water and the sound of seagulls soaring in the wind. I remember this one-time dad told me about how seagulls used to glide on the wind and seem to be fixed high in the sky without moving or falling down without any support. I always wondered why all these old people say such lies. Wouldn’t gravity have pulled it down? If rain really fell as often as they say it did, it would have burnt away all the plants and animals because of the acid content as all rains do. How did they play in such harsh conditions in the rain? All the things he said never obeyed the laws of physics or science. I always wonder.

They’re probably lying. But it’s a lie I wish were true now. It seems almost like paradise. We then moved to the Remains Exhibition where we saw real skeletons of animals and birds that used to exist. But they looked so ugly unlike the replicas that have beautiful feathers and skin and eyes and ears. These remains simply have bones. I made friends with one of the exhibits. The plaque said its an animal called a skunk; I call it skeleton skunk. We then moved to the Sports Exhibition where we saw replicas of humans playing on large fields in colourful uniforms with round objects and special sticks without any oxygen cylinders. They also looked much more muscular than humans today. The plaque said they could also run faster, lift heavier objects than today’s humans and even jump. Some could jump very high and would compete in competitions. What a dumb competition? Who cares which of them could jump the highest?

We then moved to the Pets Exhibition where we saw animals that humans had as household pets. They were nothing like my Puppy 15000 or the Kat 50 robots that came with inbuilt commands and could also do calculations and internet searches. The old pets had to be taught to shake hands and speak and couldn’t do half the things the pets of today can. I wonder why people loved dogs and cats and birds so much as pets. They’re so lame. We then moved to the Civilisations Exhibition. This was my favourite. In this hall we saw many different replicas of people of different colours and clothes of different cultures. I also saw an array of exhibits that portrayed what the food back then looked like. Apparently, people ate parts of plants and animals as food. It always grossed me out a little bit though, while that food was definitely more beautiful on the plate than our synthesised hydro food, it was harder to prepare and was sometimes gooey and gross. The hydro food is much simpler. You put it on the plate and pour some water and mix it till it reaches a mushy state and then it’s done. Simple and quick. It also had many flavours. Chicken, Mixed fruits, Salad but my all-time favourite, Chocolate.

Dad told me chocolate was taken from trees in his day and that it tasted much sweeter and richer. I would have liked to try it. I also saw a replica of a man moving awkwardly in a large water reservoir. When I asked dad, he told me that replica was swimming. It’s the act of throwing yourself in a dedicated reservoir and wasting energy in that process to induce pleasure. The people that lived years ago were crazy. Why would you waste energy just to move through still water? Beaches are a different thing, but a pool? Boring. But apparently, they were also very rich. They could afford to get water enough to swim in it. While today even the richest person had to wait for multiple minutes just to get water to drink. Dad also told me that back then desalinated water would come out of the ground and that it flowed out of machines called taps.

I wonder how they transported this much water to all the houses. Must have needed millions of water packs like the ones delivered to our house every day. After the Civilisations Exhibit, we came out of the museum to get ice cream. I always loved ice cream. I love to stand and watch the guy at the stall mix flavours with the synthetic milk cream and Saccharine and then put it in the freezer. It tasted so cold and creamy. After that it was almost dawn, so we decided to head home before the sun came up and fried us with UV rays. Apparently in dad’s time, people went out during the day but after global warming set in and the atmosphere was destroyed, people had to stay in their cubicles during the day. It would have been cool to go out in the sun and waste energy kicking a spherical object with my friends. I can’t wait to reach home and tell them about all that I saw and learnt today

Blog By Arvind K

#16. Travel my Escape

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Have you noticed that some people work so hard and save up a lot to travel? Why is travelling the new hype? I can see that travelling really can crave a big hole in your wallet and right from stepping into an aeroplane and back, you are using up everything so quickly that you sometimes don’t notice it.

But travelling is my escape. Yes, its an expensive one but the reason I travel is not because of the thrill for it, in another country, you require a restart in your way in life. The food you eat, the people you meet, the things you do and the history you learn is different from home. Travelling lets you become a new person and its important to break down your shell and let yourself experience what the world beyond your reach has to offer.

I really got into travelling after having an emotional breakdown at 2018 but ever since I started travelling, I came back with more stories to say, more things to do and more reason to perform. Last few months, I went to Iceland, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Hungary and Portugal. I am a nature enthusiast and the thrill to find the beauty of what mother nature offers gives me the strength and confidence to keep pushing my boundaries. The goal is not to impress but sometimes, its important to find and live in the moment.

It’s a reward you deserve. Well, you know the saying “You only live Once”, the world is too big to explore but we all run by a sand clock that keeps drawing down the sand grains until everything become to late. I don’t mean to tell you to give up and start travelling. My intention is to help you find purpose while travelling. Like for example, if you were going to an unhappy state of mind. You need to let yourself go from home and jump into the world of uncertainty and curiosity. Through this way, you start picking up the puzzles and figuring out what defines you and find your reasons to smile.

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Here is something I want to add, when you travel. Let go of your past. Grab yourself a map from the tourist office and navigate yourself through the city. There is a saying “In order to reconnect, you need to disconnect”. My point is that you need to let go of what holds you back. When you let yourself into the devils of distraction, you miss the good stuff that the place has to offer. You encounter good as well as bad people. But the goal here is to learn to adapt. You are no longer a kid but a mature adult that needs to go through hurdles of difficulties such as language barrier, culture shock, misinterpretation and confusion. But learning to accept them is all part of the travel experience.

The city / place welcomes you but its your responsibility to integrate yourself with the what welcomed you. As you are aware, that we humans are learning oriented being that is backed up by learning and experience curves. Let me tell you honestly, at 2016, I went to Paris and it was awful. I had no plan, no idea, I had so much fear and I was in total confusion. My experience was bad because it was my first time and I thought it would be easy to navigate using a Paris Card. Oh, boy. I was wrong. Paris has been the city I lost against and I feel like I could have done better. It was my first time and I didn’t trust myself travelling but I did, and I failed. I wanted to give up and not try again. But that’s when I knew that failing is just another reason to try again. Paris is still one place I will go again and explore properly. I know it’s a beautiful city and called the City of Love, but I never made amends with the city itself.

That’s when I promised myself that every city I go, I will plan, think strategy and do it better than the previous city. And that has been my learning curve, I let myself have bad experience, I let myself fail, I let myself lose money because I wanted to have a positive outlook towards travelling. I keep recording my flaws and mistakes and I look at ways to improve. That’s my thrill of travel.

Now, here is a deadlock. Travelling alone. I did it but its doable but the flaw I see in travelling alone is the will to express. I enjoy travelling with a friend or a family relative because when you are both put in a new environment, your thoughts and action vary from that of your co-traveller and the freedom to express is what makes it fun. Like for example, when travelling with my friend through Dublin, we went restaurant hopping which was so much fun, I tried the Irish and English traditional meals to which I compared them with my familiar Bavarian / Austrian meals that I normally eat. We also talked to each other about the authenticity of the cuisine that we are experience and there was so much sharing of knowledge. Travelling gives you the luxury to compare and being critics of your own word. You have a lot to notice, understand and discover. Travelling alone is not bad, it’s a lot of freedom and quite more adventures. You are own your own and I am sure many backpackers are solo travelers that tour around an area for a very long time and get involved immensely with their surroundings.

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My favorite part is the when I scroll through the city during the night. The city comes alive at night, and I know we have clubs, pubs and open events everywhere and I do attend them once a while but what I actually like the most is watching the stars. I sometimes take the time to see how the stars look above me and how we all share the same sky of stars. The sky of stars gives me so much memories. Like the most important people I met in my life, the people that I can consider as game-changers and the ones that were there in the good and bad times, we all sometimes just stared at the stars,  during our fine moments before departure and talked about what the future of life holds for us. And every time I look above, I recollect my thoughts and tell myself the sky of memories that keeps the city night alive and motivates me to keep discovering.

I want to end this blog of to the ones that don’t have to proposition to travel because of various reason. You don’t have to go to the country to find yourself or save up money for a lovely trip. All you need to do is discover your own locality. Let yourself explore the far side of the unknown within your place. Go to the places or the towns near you that you normally wouldn’t go to. Take a change to do a camp in the nearest campsite. Try out a new cuisine that you have never tried before, let your heart find the interest in newness. That’s how I feel in love with nature. I let myself get lost in the forest behind my house in Switzerland and always took the effort to find myself back home by evening. Try out a new recipe of a culture you have been always interested in, try cooking it and see how it turns. I know travelling is defined as an object or a person moving from one place to another through a means. Well, redefine your definition of what travelling is to you. Travelling to me is letting myself go from my comfort bubble and transit myself to another culture/foreign environment that allows me to rebuild my foundation of my understanding/perspective in life. So, I will leave you with this note.

What is travelling to you?

Written by Dochi

#15. How hard it is to say NO!

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Last day a couple of friends and I decided to have lunch from KFC. We tricked the nice innocent friend into standing in the queue (only after making sure that he knew our orders by heart though) and went to sit down. He came back with every possible dip available, ketchup, mayo, garlic paste, name it you got it. That too for all three of us. And not one of us ever use any of these stuffs. We stared at him pointedly without even giving him the occasional relief of blinking until he blurted out “I’m sorry guys. I fell for the dips again”. He further went on to explain that when the nice lady at the counter asked him nicely if he wanted dips, he couldn’t just say no to her like that. Although it seemed like a silly thing then, I later realized it to be something of a more serious problem that many of us introverts face, the difficulty in saying NO to someone.

The hardest thing to say no to is when your friends make plans to go out when all you want is a chill day with your books, cookies, chips and pajamas. Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely love hanging out with my friends and I always have an awesome some time whenever I hang out with them. But I don’t know if it’s just a Linnet thing or a universal thing (I’m 99.985% certain that it’s a universal thingy) but on some days the lazybones in me get better of me. But how do I convey this to my friends without hurting their feelings. What if they take this NO to be a subtle hint that I don’t like hanging out with them anymore(all chunkies of mine who’s reading this I love hanging out you ((yes all of you)) and don’t stop inviting me to go out with you even if I say NO twice or thrice in a row).So back to my worrisome brain’s musings.. What if they stop including me in all their future plans? What if they decide to stop talking to me altogether? What if they DUMP me from the position as a best friend? * sobs and blow nose violently *

Enough with the drama. I might have exaggerated the situation a little but still saying a firm NO to plans that involve going out is hard. The trick is to tell them exactly what you want them to know. While “Sorry I rather prefer the company of my books than you guys” would be a rather meanie thing to say “Sorry guys I was really looking forward to today but I’m just not in the mood to go out today. I don’t even have the energy to dress (make 33.3% sad + 33.3% tired + 33.3% innocent expression)”. Okay let me get one thing straight here. I’m not teaching you guys how to manipulate your friends into letting you off the hook for not hanging out with them. Rather I’m telling you all this so that you wouldn’t end up hurting their feelings. Okay so back to the topic how many of you had instances where someone asked you for help with something which you had absolutely no idea on but said yes only so that you wouldn’t sound rude. And ended up making a mess of the whole thing only to regret not having the guts to openly admit your lack of proficiency in the required subject matter.

Or on a sillier note when your little brother comes into your room demanding his rightful share in the packet of hide and seek chocolate cookies which you had skillfully hidden away under your pillow. It’s impossible to say a hard NO to him(or her in case you have a sister) , not because you were enchanted by his large puppy eyes but because you know what will happen if you decide to shut the door at his face.
He will go storming to mom complaining how much of a meanie his big sister is. Mom, far from the impartial judge that she’s supposed to be, has an inclination towards the younger sibling. This is all so frustrating because all you wanted to do was have a packet of nice chocolate chip cookies in peace and was instead brought for trial? Such injustice.

The next hardest thing to say NO to is something all Indians would be familiar with. Us Indians have this rich tradition of “Athiti devo bhava” meaning we are known for entertaining guests with great hospitality, treating them as equivalents of God (I might have exaggerated the context a wee bit). Translation: stuffing them with all sorts of delicacies without listening to their cries of “I’m so full aunty. You don’t want to see my stomach explode do you!”. Desserts, Chocolates, ice cream, deep fried spirals, hexagons, spheres and so goes the list. Everything’s happy at first but even after your stomach attains the saturation level there’s no way out of it. Here you are struggling to breathe while aunty makes the re-entry from kitchen with plates of more colorful varieties. You try saying no again but seeing that your cry for mercy is falling into deaf ears your plea again in a whinier tone but no, “you need more flesh on that skeleton, kid” is what you are met with. These aunties may be the sweetest souls, but they have the one-man ability to uproot your carefully formulated diets in a matter of seconds.
Saying no is never easy but sometimes you just won’t have another option. Don’t think of it as anything worse than ripping off a band aid (but then when has ripping off a band aid ever been easy). So, what I’m trying to say is that when a situation demands you to say a hard no to someone or something you’ve got to toughen up and do it whether you like it or not. Like for example when a plateful of cheesy fries are staring at you, begging you to take them in your hands tenderly, lick the cheese off them and to sink your teeth gently into the perfect crispy surface. But no don’t fall for it. Be a strong woman (woman, because I’m talking about myself), look the cheesy fries in the eyes and say “NO CHEESY FRIES. NOT THIS TIME. SORRY “. And pat yourself on the back saying,” there you go that wasn’t so hard was it”, wipe your tears and walk away.

So if you have any stories of similar instances do share guys!

Written by CHIRI

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Lost in Silence

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The days go by, the clocks tick away
the stars hide and emerge, the sun rises and falls,
the seasons pass, and I sit here all night and all day,
reminiscing to the walks we took, the laughs and the calls.

I miss telling you stories, I miss that wonder in your eyes,
I walk the streets that were familiar, now strange,
I visit the same places, I see the same sights,
but without you besides, there’s too much change.

The chair across me sits empty, the swings in stillness,
the mantlepiece half full, the pictures telling an unfinished story,
the garden unkempt, taking over our hand painted fence,
the benches and shady trees missing us, telling new lovers our history.

I wish our time weren’t rationed, I wish I had another life time with you,
I wish we could still lie under the stars, having lost ourselves in the silence,
I wish we could go to all the places we once did and do all that we used to,
but you found your place among the stars, leaving me lost in silence.

What about our bucket list? what about all that we dreamt to be?
It was all so quick, she came and went, she didn’t stay,
she was merely a spark in the darkness of the universe inside me,
but she was the light that guided me, showing me the way.

I’m a mere existence, a man who’s lost meaning,
I’m a lone traveler who’s lost his compass along his path,
I’m a discarded story book with a story missing its ending,
I’m a soul that wanders the earth like a ghostly psychopath.

I had found my pile of gold, I had succeeded in my conquest,
I had found my oasis in the desert, I had reached, my Shangri La,
I had traveled the world, sailed the waves, in the serene and the tempest,
But I can only hear you from the past and talk to you from afar.

The seclusion we reached out for, our plans for reclusion,
the very same serenity that fills me with chaos and torture,
a wish that burdened us, a debt that came without fail, my restitution,
I asked for a silence to spend with you, not for silence from you, my lover.

Poem By Arvind

If for a single second…

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“Maybe we shouldn’t talk as often. Maybe some space will help you move on.” “But even space has something for us to love about, my dear.”

Okay picture this, me and you, we are holding something heavy above our heads. Neither of us can do it alone, but together we can manage. If one of us let’s go, the other dies. That’s where we are. I don’t want you to go, so I don’t let go. You don’t want me to get crushed, so you won’t let go. Whatever the reason, we are trapped in this moment. The worst part is, it is my own doing. Now I can either push you away, saving you, but killing me, or I can let go, killing you. I wanted love. You wanted friendship. Now we are trapped in a situation where either we both come to terms, or one of us takes the shit-storm that’s coming. You see, I’m more than willing to take it, if it saves you, but you wouldn’t let me. Thus, we are in constant conflict. I came to crossroads where I had to choose to let you go or hold on to something that will never happen, and I always chose the same road every time. I wish we could have been more; you wish I would stop wishing that. It’s simply chaos brewing. I do want to move on, but I just don’t want to. Every day I tear myself apart trying to keep our friendship that means so much to you, never for an instant letting you see the cracks and faults that form day by day.

Every day that I talk to you, I fall in love with you more and more, every day I don’t, I miss you more and more. Either way, giving up is impossible. I know I can’t force you to stay with me. But now you force me to shut off my emotions and feelings toward you and just be friends. Why can’t I love you but still be friends? Seeing you as just a friend seems like such a nightmare. You say you feel guilty, because you feel like you’re giving me false hope. Well I feel guilty for falling in love and creating this situation in the first place. There’s a lot of things I’m willing to do to help us both but moving on is not one of them. So please don’t ask me to, I’d hate to have to say no to you

Why can’t I? I don’t know. All I know is that you matter to me far too much for me to just let you go. I can’t bear to lose you. But now we grow distant each day. I told you earlier this was going to happen, but you believed it wouldn’t and that we could still be friends without me having feelings for you. But how can you expect the result to be any different if every time I see you, I still see the same things I fell in love with earlier? How can I move on when all I can think of every time, I see you, is how fucking amazing you are?

I have so many questions, but no answers. I have so many problems but no solutions. But that’s not new. I’ve had that my whole life and I’ve spent my entire life searching for a solution, searching for home, waiting to be understood and I met you. One hour of talking and you’re already completing my sentences. You didn’t just listen, you understood and for those few hours that we talked that day, I felt genuinely happy. You just washed away all my worries like waves on a beach and as soon as you were gone, those worries came back, more potent. I guess that’s what got me addicted to you like a drug. That constant need to have you around. But apart from just taking my worries away, in you, I had found everything I was looking for but so much more.

Now all I can do is stare at that one picture we took together that day and see what I look like, when I’m happy. It’s certainly very different and much better than the face I see in my mirror every day. People ask me how my life could be so perfect. Popular at college, lots of friends, never weak, always laughing, always strong and just happy. If only they knew, that under my strong character is a weak broken heart, under my happiness is an endless ocean of pain and despair, behind every laugh is an attempt at masking the footprints left by tears, behind every friend I make is my search for her in someone else, behind my popularity is the determination to not repeat the same mistakes I’ve already made. I keep trying to be a better me every day, and nothing changes. In the end, I still revisit the same moment repeatedly.

I guess some people are cursed with too much hope. Hope of a brighter future that stops me from running away from pain and despair. But it seems it only leads to more pain. I guess I’m cursed to walk an endless path of hurt to a destination that will never come. I guess I’m cursed to be too strong to give in to the pain and quit but too weak to ignore the pain and be happy. It seems I’m cursed to simply feel the pain repeatedly and endlessly.

I would never show you any of this even though I know you will understand. I’ve created enough problems for you as it is. But how can I stop loving someone who’s funny and awesome enough to make me happy just by being in the vicinity, but sweet enough to offer to sit and listen to me if I ever wanted to share something with you, or if I simply needed to vent? You claim you’re not perfect, but you don’t see that it’s the combination of your perfections and imperfections I fell in love with. No great painting is painted only with bright colors, no great song was sung only with high notes. No perfect person ever existed but if they did, they wouldn’t be as interesting as the imperfect ones. It’s not that you’re perfect, it’s just that you’re real.

I’ve lost count of the number of days I wished that I could mean as much to you as you mean to me or even half as much. It’s true, unrequited love hurts, but what hurts the most is when you ask me to move on, because I’ve to choose between lying to you, or seeing you storm away annoyed that I refuse to move on. Of course, I would always choose to maintain your trust even if the sight of you storming away hurts more with each step you take. It reminds me each time, that one day, I’ll see that for the last time. I don’t know how I’ll deal with it though. I maybe strong, but every strong person has a weak spot they try to safeguard with the strong demeanor and mine is losing you. I just hope I don’t fall apart in front of you, I would hate to leave that in your conscience. I’ve always been strong, motivated others to be too. But now I think I may be on a path that will strip away all my defenses and tear me apart.

But I guess that’s the way it works. Maybe one day you’ll change your mind, maybe you’ll feel about me tomorrow as I feel about you today. But you see, that’s the thing about tomorrow, it’s always coming but never really arrives. I just hope if that day does come, it’s not too late. I’ve never wished for you to regret anything, and I never will, but sometimes I just wish you would let me be, let me love you the way I do, instead of trying to force me to not. Sometimes I wish you would just accept things the way they are. Sometimes I feel guilty for putting someone as nice as you through this. But in the end, I remember that there’s nothing I can do. I’m as helpless as you are, maybe a bit more. But hey, it was still a privilege, nonetheless. You may not be with me tomorrow, but you’re here today. I’ll never regret that; I’ll never regret meeting you. I’ll only regret not being the friend you wanted me to be, I’ll only regret disappointing you as much as I did.

I don’t know if there’s a life after this one, but if there are any, I just hope that in what could be an infinite lifetimes, there’s at least one where we are together, even if it’s merely for a second. It would be great if I could know what your love feels like for a single second, once in an infinity of lifetimes. A single second where I mean to you more than anyone else. A single second, where I’m genuinely happy. A single second I would forever remember and cherish. A single second that’s too much to ask for. A single second I would give anything to have. If  for a single second…

Written by Arvind

War Scars

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There was once a summer, where I went to spend vacation with my aunt and her son, Well, in my eye, he seem to be more like my close friend whom I share everything with. On a fine day, I accidentally caught my first cousin applying some kind of ointment on his knee. I was curious and concern at the same time, so, I asked about it. He reminded me of an accident that occurred 2 years back, from where he got some those serious scars. His scars made me triggered me to remember the marks on my sisters’ belly which she got from her 9 months pregnancy. Both have imprints on their skin are given by their life. But what surprise me is the difference in the way they analyse those scars. My cousin hopes to rub it off from his body because each time he looked at his knee, those scars brings back those dark and horrific moment before his eyes. But, on the other hand, for my sister it was different. She sees them as the symbols of her endurance. Her ability to sacrifice anything for a long period of 9 months and to give birth to her beautiful baby despite suffering a horrible pain.

Literally everyone on earth do have scars. Either visible or not. Some have scars on their body whereas some have in their heart. Speaking about scars in our heart, I would like to say that words and deeds of others and ours itself can make wounds on the walls of heart. When those wounds remain unhealed, they transform into invisible scars. And these scars are invincible too. Because we won’t forget heartaches so soon. Isn’t it true that we still feel the same rage to someone who insulted us years ago. Isn’t it true that whenever we think of the situations or people who ‘gifted’ us affliction, our heart feels a pang. And It is indeed true that many of us have a sewed up heart…. a heart with patch works.

In fact, no one can escape from getting hurt, and everyone has their own scars. Because life is like a war. Don’t worry, I am not here to speak philosophy. But when I think about life I can’t help myself comparing it to a war. In war we fight with people, in life we fight with situations. In war people face victory and losses whereas in life, people face success and failure. In war loss is inseparable and in life it is unpreventable. In war no one can avoid parting and separation, whereas in life too we can’t avoid them.

But there are some brave soldiers who are gifted with great courage to maintain a curve on their lips even if they are mutilated by war (life). They are filled with spirit, perseverance and an unswerving decision to win fate itself. And they will win. Not because they foresee the actions of their fate…..just because they aren’t afraid of getting hurt. They are very sure that their Shields are not strong enough to defend the deceptions of life. But they just don’t fear to have scars. And these brave individuals both men and women, don’t deceive themselves on what others will think of their scars.
But not everyone is courageous enough let the world know about their scars.

Let me share you my experience know a girl who cut her flesh whenever she is depressed. She is trying to forget those hard thoughts by making her body suffering pain. So, her body is full of scars. But she wears only dresses covering her entire body. She doesn’t want the world to know her problems and she fears what people will think of her if they see her scars. It’s indeed true, that not everyone always keeps a blood-stained blade to self-harm like her. But there is another truth…. that not everyone has gone through a life like hers. Battle fields are different and so is the fight. Some people may face everything with a determined heart. Whereas, others may not have such a strong heart. As, human nature, we try to slip into different alternatives which can be unhealthy to meld our scars and we try to fake the truth that they are fine and brave enough to withstand harsh those life situations. Those unhealthy means can be a blade, alcohol or some kind of drugs.

I don’t support self-harming or drug abuse. But do we ever think about why some people are up to such things??? Because they are afraid to stand up alone…to face realities without supports….and Most importantly they really scared to fall and fail. Hence they end up with dark haunting silhouettes in their life book rather than end up with some scars .

Yes, of course as said in the Kite Runner (by Khalid Hosseini ),scars will make the present to last forever.But scars are what make people who they are.Because they prove that you are much stronger than whatever that tried to destroy you.scars only have the stories of survival and victory. S,o what I want to say my readers is that ,if wounds became scars don’t worry,they are not the fights you loss…but for the fights you won….for you never elope from anything but you just faced it with all your heart.And that’s what matters,you fought back.So, just face the WAR ,soldier !! and courageously end up with SCARS

Written by Guest Writer Zahrana

Ep 4:Damage, Debris and Clear Skies

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In case you missed Ep 3: Caught in the Cataclysm, Click here and Catch up. Also, this is the Last Episode of Rainy Days in Cloudless Minds, Enjoy the Christmas Finale

My troubles started soon after. Most of the moments after her funeral were a blur of emotions and things that probably didn’t happen. Yet I can clearly remember the fall, the underside of the bridge moving further away from me, the flowing water moving closer, open arms ready to receive me, embrace me, wash away my pain, my torture. I fell, slow, serene, not a care in the world of what awaited me at the bottom, I was reminded of the gulls gliding in the sky, their serenity, the salty breeze, the blue skies, her black enchanting eyes, her smile, her.

I remember being hauled out, I remember the hospital ward, I remember my friends and family, they came, they went, nobody stayed, nobody could ease my pain. In the end, I was in a room filled with people who cared about me, and yet I felt so alone. There were many people who cared, but not a single person that understood. There was no Anjali. Next thing I remember, I’m in the ward of a mental institution, the guy that went crazy after his wife died. They pitied me, felt sorry for me, but denied me escape. I hated every second. I just wanted to get back to her, I wanted to go home, my home with a heart, and each second they kept me restrained was one more second to wait before I could see her.

Is she here? Did Anjali come?” I asked the nurse and like the last hundred billion times, I got the same answer. Everyday I would sit wondering why all our plans of spending Christmases, Easters, independence days, any celebrations together had all come to a halt. Did she no longer care? Did she not want to see me again? What did I do? What have I done wrong? Where are you?! Why have you abandoned me to suffer like this? If I did something wrong, I’m sorry! Don’t leave me here like this! Please!

Christmas slowly crept into the wards of the institution. The festivities meant my family would visit me. Or so I’m told, but I don’t recount any visits from a loving family but the staff claims I was visited almost every few months. Of course sometimes I find it hard to tell the difference between family and strangers. But that’s not what bothered me. All around me, I see happy faces, I see wives with teary eyes, the scenes of a patient wait coming to a happy end, I see sons and daughters visiting their fathers and mothers who barely cared. But the one face I waited for everyday never came. I looked behind the Christmas trees decorated with bright lights and colorful decorations, much like the world me and Anjali created in our minds, unbound by limits, empowered by imagination, I searched between the stacks of presents, like when she used to play hide and seek, always the fun little girl no matter how many Christmases passed, I looked out the window at the stars much like the stars we admired, while simply stargazing on the roof of our house, holding hands, merging minds. She was nowhere to be found. I didn’t look forward to the presents, nor did I admire the decorations. I simply sat and waited, holding back tears, taking deep breaths and assuring myself, tomorrow, tomorrow she would come. She has to. Right?

I would write letters daily, letters to her telling her about my day and begging her to come back. She never replied. I drew pictures for her, like I used to at home. I still remember how we painted the walls together. The walls of our home were canvases for our minds. Yet she never came to compliment them nor say they were mediocre and that she can do better. She always loved doing that. It never failed to be amused. Yet, now, she’s not here, all her promises were simply hollow. She promised to live with me forever, but now she left me to suffer. I couldn’t even let her know that Puppy, our golden retriever(She actually named him that), was dead. The doctors had left him in the custody of a nearby animal shelter. He got the best care and I visited him often. The only part of home I still had, the only thing left that still made me feel like I wasn’t completely alone. Now he’s also gone. The staff joined me in a special funeral for him. I still have his collar which Anjali crafted. I have so much and yet nothing. I just wanted to die, that sweet escape of blackness, the calm and quiet transition. It also meant that I could see her again.

Wake up, honey. What’s wrong? Had a bad dream?” Her sparkling eyes loomed a few inches from mine. I sat up on the bed and looked around, we were in our room, Puppy sleeping on the beanbag under the window sill. I felt a huge sigh of relief as I released it had all been a bad dream.

I got up from bed and walked towards the window and stared out at the hill in the distance, the very same hill where we used to sit as kids on a bench under a tree. There was a slightly drizzle that morning, the pitter patter of raindrops on the glass giving the room a serene ambiance. I felt her arms surround me as she hugged me from behind, we stood there listening to the music of the rain, I felt her breath on the back of my neck, I heard the birds chirping outside and the sun slowly rising. Only there was something odd I noticed as she hugged me.

Anjali, how did that ring get there?” I didn’t remember proposing to her other than in the dream but there it was, the very same ring I bought, sitting on her finger. “Ha ha. Very funny. You obviously don’t remember us going to Cannes, you obviously don’t remember taking me to Long beach and then to Paris and proposing on top of the Eiffel tower.” she replied, sarcasm showing clearly in her voice. “But that’s absurd. Why would I ever do that?! You’re terrified of heights!” It wasn’t long before the medications wore off and I
returned to the hospital ward where she didn’t exist, where she was still dead. The reality I was in, was far away from the reality I wanted to be in. I found it harder and harder to differentiate between what’s real, and what’s the effect of my medication

Soon, I learned to cope as I accepted that she was not alive in this reality, but in my reality she always would be and that’s all that mattered.

What? Never seen a human before?” She asked me, “You didn’t listen to a word I said, did you?” “Yeah yeah, I was listening, so the cottage in Italy, and the grapevines and the… Yeah I wasn’t listening.” I ended with an awkward smile as I sat up straight on the bench. I had lost myself in her eyes as I rested my head on her lap, her fingers stroking my hair. We simply laughed about it together and towards the end, we sat there, huddled together, much like on the couch the day I told her about her condition, the day I asked her to marry me, the day I had hidden a golden retriever puppy in the bedroom which pounced on her as soon as she entered.

Every day we would simply sit on that bench, Puppy, running around playing in the puddles of water, me holding her hand, her fingers intertwined in mine, the orange evening sun giving her skin a beautiful orange glow and I was lost in the abyss within those eyes and yet, despite all my attempts I could never recreate her
in my mind, with all her perfect imperfections, her tiny actions, her smile, her eyes, everything simply a crude recreation of blurry memories from a damaged brain. A brain clear of all thought and feelings, but a brain exploding with emotion and images, painful memories, blissful flashbacks, walks down nostalgic paths, holding hands with the past, ignoring the present to an indeterminate future.

There were clear skies, there was rain, there were hailstorms, there were cyclones, tornadoes, droughts, floods, tsunamis, snowfall, there were seasons of blistering cold winters of depression with beautiful snowflakes of flashbacks, there were burning hot summers of heartbreak with brights golden rays of hope, there were uncomfortably humid springs of regret which filled the valleys of my cracked heart with flowers of kisses and hugs from a time past, there were death filled autumn, where splinters of my heart withered away along with leaves of the painful past, paving way for a brighter future

There were rainy days in cloudless minds, after all.

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Special note: The above events were the mutterings of a psychologically unstable patient that were noted down by a passionate psychiatrist who claimed to have known the patient since childhood and even loved him at one point, unrequited and unacknowledged. Of course the reliability of these writings is questionable as they could quite simply be the rantings of a madman accused of murdering his wife, of course, it was never proved, or as the story suggests, the sufferings of a passionate lover that lost his loved one. Either way it is your decision, dear reader, as to what you believe. The sketches found attached to the writing were in fact made by the patient himself, the first sketch being the sketch of the girl, Anjali, herself, all made before he descended into madness.
Of course, as a psychiatrist, I didn’t fail to notice that the only clear sketch was the sketch of Anjali, which shows how clearly the patient remembers the face, which leads me to question if there is actually some truth behind these writings. But, that is just my deduction. Merry Christmas.
Dr Rajesh Kumar. 25th December 2016

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Thanks to all the readers for being part of this journey and making this Christmas special happen. This series wouldnt be real without the constant love and support we get fro you all. Taking a moment to thank our writer Arvind for lending his talents in fulfilling the Christmas miracle and deserves all the applause in the big stage .I would like to thank the people behind the stage that helped us promote and engage with series, bring in content and pictures, helping us build the foundation and complete this Christmas with a whole heart. once again, Merry Christmas.