Sunday, October 11, 2015

!!! First Derby !!!

Loneliness is a bitch. Especially when you are surrounded with friends, acquaintances, couples, food, variety of people and even bigger variety of beers. It starts to creep somewhere at the back of your mind and before you know it; it engulfs all your senses. You are talking, but you cannot listen anything, you are looking at people, but not able to see anything, you are surrounded by deafening music but yet silence is all you feel, you are moving with the music but after sometime you realise you are moving with the train of your over powering thoughts instead.

For the first time in your life you find yourself at the Derby, a laid back enthusiasm hovers in the stands, where some are busy deciding their next bet, others hogging on to the delicacies being served during and in between the races.  But all you can see is the way jockey pushes and pushes his horse to win, and all you can feel is a dull ache somewhere at the center of your being, realising that something in you does not agree with what you are watching. Although the crowds’ deafening roar erupting to cheer their respective numbers, brings you back a bit from all your mulling, yet you fail to either participate or to understand the purpose or necessity of the same.

While you are trying to be acceptable with the fact that you are already stuck at the stand for next couple of hours so you might try to behave “not bothered or bored” and simultaneously trying to make an acquaintance understand that why you don’t buy animal prints or ride them, exactly in that moment one of the horses collapses just couple of yards before the finishing line, and you experience something which the people in general describes as “having your breathe caught in your throat”. With zillion experiences which can make your breathe caught in your throat, you would have never picked this one even if you have exhausted your chances of choosing all others. You stand there frozen, trying hard to make the sense of words spoken by the commentator, when he announces that the horse has just suffered a sudden heart attack. All the others who have betted on the number printed on the cover draped across that horses back, are frustrated over the fact they lost their money, you look around to see if anyone, even one of them, is talking about that living thing that is now laying on the ground still as a stone.

The moment is passed, the animal is taken away, and the races continue as if nothing happened. You too mingle with the expected, eating, drinking, chatting, dancing, trying your best to be social. 
Although the race course is closed and the party has began you see then very clearly that they are all in derby in their own minds competing with self on endless dimensions.

Somewhere in middle of all these, you look around and find yourself unconnected with everything and asking yourself one question you end up asking yourself every single day, “what the hell are you doing here”, “why are you even here”. Just like that the auto pilot mode is switched off, and the feeling creeps in somewhere at the back of your mind, gradually engulfing you, making you want to turn around and keep walking, yet your social manners shackled around you keeps you put.
Even with a day spent the way it was spent, the only truly enjoyable thing you remember doing is the walk you took at the end of the night in pouring down rain, getting soaked to your skin as you walk towards your car instead of running and somehow that ten minutes’ walk becomes the highlight of your day, with every step the rain washes off, the talks, the music, the pretence, the dense fog of escapism and the clutter of boxed emotions. The feeling that has engulfed you isn’t bothering you anymore; it has grounded you instead, making you whole.

Written By – Ritika Patel

Friday, October 2, 2015

A Verse of Rakshabandhan

 A letter to my Little brother on the eve of Rakshabandhan....

I have been sharing words of wisdom,
All along as a way of finding the connection,
Thinking you may pick some pieces of liking,
Which might help you in surviving..

Life is not a piece of puzzle,
It’s neither unfair nor difficult
Just realise that needs to be realised
That it’s your, to whichever way you want it to channelize.

Struggles make us who we are
Let them shape you, don’t be tart,
Embrace rather than regret
Learn rather than forget.

Look high, always higher,
There are many to pull you down lower
Detach from them, & avoid a tragedy
Remember faith in self is the best strategy

Fly away, dream and make them come true
Life is all about what is inside you
Take risks and let go of the fear
Explore people and keep the loved ones close
You will be successful and reach new heights
While you do all that, we will keep you cherished in our sights!!!!

Written by - Ritika Patel

Thursday, March 19, 2015

!!! Marry When You Know You Are "Ready" !!!

To visit the published version of the article Click Here
My fingers numb a little. It’s been over five minutes that my cursor is looming over the ‘not interested’ tab under the profile of a prospective groom. The picture is a bit hazy, almost all of them are covered with glares, the family information and groom information sounds just about okay; however, none of it is enough to make me want to click on the ‘I am Interested’ tab in his profile. Yet, there is this voice in my head, which debates may be you can talk with them and then decidetoo early and too little reasons to rejectat least meet him first, sometimes you just need to take a chance. What I, and I am sure a million other girls in my country, fail to understand is whether it is our own mind rationalizing with you, or is it the prerequisite of the society we have been nurtured in, that is echoing in our minds.
We fail to understand the truth behind our dilemma. Most often, our judgement is clouded with years old tradition, family culture, societal pressure along with the complicated combination of our own personal thinking. Sometimes all of these lead us into getting married for all the wrong reasons. I understand these days there are a great number of families who let their daughters choose their own partner, or families who involve their daughters as much as possible in searching for the right match. The others just tell their daughters when to get married, whom to get married to and why to get married. Although the ‘why to get married’ question is something that is a common denominator in all the households today. Every parent can come out with their own long essay on why their daughter needs to get married o1001 perks of having a husband. In reality, I believe, this is one question, or perhaps the only question that every girl needs to ask herself before taking ‘the’ step.


It starts when a girl is around ten or eleven, when the mothers casually remarks, “Do not speak so loudly, your in-laws will say that your mother didn’t teach you anything.” The story continues into adolescence “Look how dirty you are keeping your things, how will you manage your own home in future”, “Oh, we just want you to be married, then we can relax” or when you cross the age of eighteen, family wants the girls to graduate to at least being an amateur cook, because more than the girl itself the mother and the grandmother are worried that their daughter’s future husband might starve.
Every single remark during these conversations subtly inculcate the would be future picture in the girl’s mind, leaving her to think that the ultimate goal for her is to get married, find a good husband and keep him happy. It leads them to believe that everything they are taught is for the greater good of their future in-laws. No matter how ambitious then a girl becomes, the family focus lies only in getting them settled until then the family is generally in ‘duress’. If the girl gets married to end their duress, think again – she might end up with someone, which will lead to lifetime of stress!


“So, leave aside everything, you tell me first when are you getting married”, this will probably be the second or third statement from your aunt or uncle whenever they talk to you. They are the ones who make it their life’s mission to badger you and your family with matrimonial questions. Every get together, every gossip over tea, even a small interaction with neighbors while evening walk, or connecting with (already married) friend after weeks, everything will be circling around your questionable single hood.
Worse are those relatives who have already gotten all of their children married; they will talk about your family, as if, may be your family is not competent enough to perform the job of finding you a partner. If you are searching for a husband in increasing desperation in order to end this interrogation, think again!

Age factor

And then there is the famous age factor, every second that ticks by on your age clock is directly proportional to your parent’s pressure to get you married. They are worried for two reasons. One, all the ‘good young guys’ will be gone and their daughter will end up with an ‘average middle-aged balding man’, or two, you will not be able to bear children. But before you build your own myths about the age factor being the reason of having pregnancy problems, consult a reputed gynaecologist and get the right medical consult.
It will be prudent in today’s day and age that you decide yourself what is the right time for you. Having a child is a huge commitment in itself; ensure you are ready not only physically but mentally, emotionally and financially for this.


Many people also draw a comparison between your career, or the lack of it, to the choice of getting married. When, what a girl is pursuing in her life is not deemed important, parents generally get the idea that she is done living her life and it’s time to get her married. Or god forbid,  if she is not pursuing a career or doesn’t hold a job, the only thing remaining for her would be to find an alliance, in order for her life to get a purpose.
Get married when you know you have a grip on your life, which does not necessarily mean you have to go out and get a fancy career to justify your time; absolutely not! All you need to know is what you want out of your life and how you envision yourself achieving it.


Then there are some – who have been in one relationship after other, right from the time they understood the words ‘love’ or ‘relationship’. It gets increasing difficult for them to not be in a relationship as there is a pattern of dependency in their life. For such people, the state of being on your own might put them in a lot of discomfort. There is nothing wrong in wanting to have someone to depend upon, but it is also very important to understand that your companion is looking for the same qualities, and the only way you can play this role confidently is when you are independent in your thoughts, in your decisions and in your life.


On the other hand many of us tie a knot because we do not want to be lonely. And we might latch onto the first possible choice if the motivation behind the companionship is loneliness. Try to figure out who you really want to be with, and what you are looking for in your companion. If being alone with your own self is not only discomforting but next to impossible for you, then it’s high time you take some time out for yourself, sit in your own company and try to understand who are you. Pursuing your long lost interests can do you some good too, being alone need not be a bane; make it a boon.

Fear of pain

Another wrong reason to get married is when you are in a relationship for a long time, the pressure of taking that final step is constantly present. There are relationships which although exists for long but the only reason the girl and boy decides to take the final step is because they are guilty of leaving the other with a broken heart. They are guilty and scared to back out. But if you are not ready, or if marriage is something you do not want for yourself then, backing out will be a favor you will be doing to yourself and your companion. You need to be ready for the commitment and no one can talk you into doing so; it has to come from within. The willingness should be of your own.

End to celibacy

Then there are some people who just want the celibacy part of their life to be erased. Of all the reasons this one, right here, can be even more dangerous than the others. Lust will, in no way, lead you to find the right partner or even a smidgen of love in your relationship. In fact when the lust part is over, you might realize that the person you are waking up with every morning is not the one for you.
Marriage needs a lot of work, patience, endurance and maturity. First step towards understanding marriage is to have a complete understanding of yourself, your needs and your expectations from life. When you are having a good day or a bad day it will be your companion who will laugh or cry with you. When you will be desperately trying to get your children in the schools, it will be you with your spouse who will have to do all the hard work. When you will be sick in the middle of the night, it will be your spouse who will stay beside you. It will be your spouse who will tell you how great you are when you are having a horrible day. It will be your spouse who will give an ear to your cribbing, frustrations and disappointments.
Moreover, you will be the one doing all these things for your spouse too. So, ensure you are ready for this, ensure when you do get married the ‘time’ is right for ‘you’.
Image of the colourful rope via Shuterstock

Written By - Ritika Patel

Sunday, January 11, 2015


When you are stuck in a weekly conference listening to one of the senior person making poor jokes, & you along with your colleagues dreading this moment of being forced to find the jokes funny and laugh on it. That is the moment when you feel like running away from that room to a blissful place, a place away from pretence and where you can sit and breathe, just breathe. That’s when you need to go to Bali!

Every day you wake up, go to office, travel back, eat and sleep. When this routine chore makes you want to pray or crave for change & excitement. That’s when you need to go to Bali!
When nothing in your life makes sense and you have spent too many hours thinking about where you are heading in your career or better yet, pondering on what is the purpose of your life? That’s when you know you need to take a BREAK and head for Bali!

When you have read the best ever work of Elizabeth Gilbert Eat Pray and Love and fallen in love with  the picturesque beauty of Bali aesthetically directed by Ryan Murphy in the movie based on this novel. That’s when you need to go to Bali!

No, I did not go to Bali to search for myself. I did not go to Bali to take a Soul trip. Nor did I go to Bali clutching the copy of Eat Pray and Love hoping it will transform my life, nor did I went their to fall in love with an Italian dude. 

I am just an average Independent Indian Woman, who saved just like any other Indian tourist to have her first ever international solo trip to one of my dream destinations. And the only agenda I had in this trip was to make the money I have spent worthwhile and enjoy every freaking second of my vacation.

Bali is considered to be the Art Center of Indonesia and even after being an Island, it has plethora of things to get indulge in. And that’s just what I did and ended up having THE trip of my life.
After enduring 14 hour long trip through Malaysian Airlines, not to forget the hyper anxiety of considering the possibility of vanishing into thin air any second, I landed at the Denpasar Airport, Bali and started the 5 most memorable days of year 2014 of my life.
The first thing that you will catch in Bali is the wave of hospitality and heart melting smiles of Balinese people, which can be experienced right from the Immigration section to the day you get on board at the end of your trip. Even the broody flight attendants seems to smile a little brighter just as the wheels of your plane touches the airport runway which is surrounded by water from three directions.

The second thing that will hit you being an Indian is , coming from a land, where more than 88000 Gods are worshiped, you may believe that you belong to the most religious, traditional and culturally rich country. Your myths will be in for a shock if you have spent even a day in this outrageously beautiful place which is covered from head to toe with structures depicting the historical and mythological tales of Hindu religion, especially the tales of Mahabharata and Ramayana.
Yes you read it right!

Scene from Ramayana
Almost all the roundabouts in Bali has life size statues of Ram, Deva Ruci, Ghatotkach, scene of Krishna giving Arjun the lessons of Bhagavad-Gita, or a magnificent life size work of art where Ravana is challenging Ram to kill him. One can get into a trance watching the meticulous hand work of the statues and it takes considerable amount of will power to stop staring at them and get moving from the middle of the road.
Third thing you will notice in Bali is that Balinese are very nosy people. The moment I entered my Hotel room I grabbed their Welcome Book as I settled with Hot coffee wishing it will take some of the jet leg away and almost spilled a mouth full on the book when I read the first few lines of the “our people” page, which clearly gave a warning to not get offended as Bali people can be very curious (softer word for nosy I thought) and will keep asking personal questions with you, request you to kindly treat them patiently as this will be your experience almost in every part of Bali.
When the words finally sunk in I laughed my head off, I am from India, INDIA, what did these Balinese know about being nosy. May be that’s the reason I didn’t take a picture of that book. Boy! Was I in for a shock, shock was it was.

The warning of the welcome book was nowhere closer to reality, not only Balinese nosy people, they will inquire your life out like a Biographer. They do not understand the subtle warnings, subtle yet clear warnings of your body language stating you do not want to answer the questions, may be for the sake of your safety or may be for the sake of not being super annoyed with the taxi driver who is going to drive you for next 9 hours. They will keep getting into the details until you spill all your beans and ensure that nothing else or ambiguous is remaining to be clarified. But at the same time they are downright sweethearts, they talk politely, pay attention to every details, go far and beyond to make your travel comfortable. If you share a good conversation with your driver or guide, they will show you the cheapest places to buy goodies, eat delectable meals or places that you can enjoy which you wouldn’t find in any of the travel sites, blogs or forums.

Fourth thing you will notice which will have many Indians running away is most of the souvenirs in Bali is phallus shaped. Talk about, pen stands, key chanis, refrigerator magnets or a bottle opener. You will find them sitting around at the front row of all the artefact’s or just dangling from the ceiling of shop, carved out of wood with utmost precision, believe me I can tell!

In those five precious days that I had, I experienced two completely different faces of Bali while one was fun, alighted, glamorous, funky and wild at times; the other was calmer, serene, quiet and laid back.
One would make you want to party all night while the other will force you to grab a Yoga mat and sit in the company of self and embrace every second of it.

This being my first solo experience, I will refrain from writing on my budget, as I hold no constraints there. I had researched and read about the places and services available for travel, eat or sightseeing, that even before I landed I knew exactly where to go and how to go, even the landmarks I will be crossing while reaching my destination. Traveling alone, builds in you a new level of confidence and a renewed sense of responsibilities. All you need is to give yourself some time to enjoy your own company and before you knew it you will be addicted to the quality time you will spend indulging with self.
The first half of my journey I spend in Seminyak couple of kilometres away from Kuta. That is just my way of spending my vacation; wherever I go I find out the most hyped places, the most commercialised and then plan my trip in a way that I stay away from those places. The most commercialised place at any tourist place is not driven by the native culture; it is driven by the tourist’s expectations. The formula to enjoy the essence of any place or city is, to live in a place  which is whithin approachable distance from your destinations so that you can enjoy the feel of the city, with more native people around and less tourists. In Bali Kuta is one highly commercialised location, in fact the entire Bali struggles to keep a hold on their years old traditions and culture in the midst of increasing tourist footfalls.

Semiyak is “the” city of Bali. With almost 3 to 4 kilometres long market, dazzling with everything from apparels to some really awesome beaded and stone jewellery. Semiyak beach rattles all morning with water activities pursued by mainly families, in night it transforms in to a blazing land with hundreds of lanterns, bean bags, Balinese delicacies and live music. It was serene day and night.

Being with self turns into an adventure when you are in company with amazing people from different nationalities and you will make friends at every corner, at eating joints, in the temple lines, during shared conveyances and even when you are negotiating while buying souvenirs. Another reason for choosing Seminyak was its approachability in terms of kilometres to travel from south to north Bali.

Barong Dance
The very first night I fortunately stumbled in the restaurant by sheer sound of the music coming from it which could be heard from across the street. Good thing I did went in, that too just in time to enjoy the one hour show of Barong Dance, traditional Balinese Dance. This dance is another Story narrating dance form, Barong is a lion and Barong fights with Rangada, the demon queen the mother of all evil spirits. I saw that dance as the combination of extremely enhanced and controlled expressions, both at the same time and the grace with which the girls and the boys performed the entire routine, which was so well rehearsed. Trying to strike up a conversation with one of the performer wasn’t very successful, although my bartender did inform that these girls and boys are anywhere from the age of 12 – 17. I mean can you believe this. Being so young and yet so strong in their performance, as they act out the mythological tales of Bali. It would be true to believe that Balinese live and sleep their culture.

Bali is full of serene sights and thousands of Temples, what will do you well is searching out all the tourist attractions, historical monuments you would like to visit from the huge list of tourist attraction, and also list down the activities you would like to do which was rusting in your wish list since like forever.
Tanha Lot Temple

And so I dove into the 16th century architects of the most sacred temple in Bali including Holy Spring Temple, Taman Ayun and my personal favourite place Pura Tanah Lot, a temple which is a small island in itself, the darkened structure, caused due to dense trees all around, only made the place feel more desirable. The temple is one of seven sea temples around the Balinese coast. Balinese temples are not maintained as the temples of India, they are not crowded, there is no line you need to stand in for hours together and definitely far more squeaky clean, which is easy to maintain as tourists are simple not allowed to step near the mail temple station,  specially the temple that are considered most sacred like Tanah Lot Temple. Although you might encounter the best ever Sunset you have witnessed in your entire life.

 Tirta Empul Temple
Tirta Empul Temple also commonly referred as Holy spring water is a reflection of the tradition and culture followed in India where the Indians take pilgrimage to the Ganges and take a dip in the holy water in order to clean themselves of sin. Small pond lined with beautiful design serving as an opening for the spring water from Sungai Pakerisan River to flow in the pond, which is considered holy and it is said to make you pure by cleaning your mind, body and soul, three words that the preachers of temple have learned to speak in flawless English. Mesmerised as I was with the temple in the entirety, I was more amazed to see, how dedicatedly and faithfully people from various nationalities, took a dip in that water, hiring preachers from the temple in order to help them clean their mind, body and soul, it makes you wonder, how much work does it really take to convert a person from a believer to a follower. Although I did not take a holy water dip myself, but I surely walked out of there feeling more acceptable towards the tradition of my own land, do I not know how many tourist comes to India in spiritual search and how many jumps into ganga to become sinless, off course I do. But here, I am referring to the people who neither come from the land of zillion traditions nor are they interested in developing spirituality and definitely not looking for any Guru. But people who would temporally accept any kind of tradition if it can at all help in their personal agendas hoping, may be this will work for them, but then may be not!

Coffee Estates
Another attraction you do not want to miss is the Coffee Plantation. You may want to park beside th street and take a walk in the trench filled with Coffe Estates, they even show you how the worlds most expensive Luwak Coffee is made and indulge you with Coffee and tea samples, while you enjoy the serene beauty of coffee estate.

When it came to doing activities which was rusting in my wish list, the one that topped all was Scuba Diving, 16km away from Semiyak is a beach called Nusa Dua. The beach will remind you of goa back home but the water activities offered their will bring you right back, from water walking to Snorkelling to Scuba Diving. You name it they will offer it. Here and at all the market places you go in Bali you will have the pleasure of dealing with money in Lakhs, given the currency exchange rate between Indian rupee and Indonesian Rupiah, even taking cash out from the ATM the lowest figure you can punch in is 50,000 rs. Isnt it amazing, and all through my trip I had negotiated from 50,000rs to 5 lakhs rupees. The entire scuba diving experience costed like 10 lakhs rupees which is around 4700 to 5000 rs only in Indian Rupee. Call me silly but the pleasure of dealing in lakhs was out of the world. Not to mention the laugh roit I had after winning my every negotiation had my taxi drivers thinking me as lony bit. My entire trip in Bali as per their currency was somewhere around 1.5 crores, sounds extravagant, well it wasn’t, wasn’t at all.

Picture taken while scuba diving
The whole scuba diving experience was simple out of the world, wordless and so much worth every bit of the trip. No, I did not suddenly realise the meaning of life nor did I suddenly became more aware of my being like shown in the movies.  But the entire journey from the shore of the sea to the middle of the sea, jumping in and gearing up with the oxygen cylinder (requiring two men to just lift it up enough so that it can be thrown in water, where you get fitted with it), and then swimming to the depth of the sea, with your instructor as your soul saviour (well although I can swim, but we are talking about going to the deepest of the sea and staying there, I mean you need help, like clinging to someone for your dear life “help”). 
I have no fear when it comes to water I embrace it like an old friend, yet I was glad it wasn’t as deep as I have seen it in the movies or discovery channel, yet I enjoyed every moment of the twenty minutes I spent inside, the Shoals of tiny iridescent fishes or the Swaying anemones filtering the gentle currents of their tiny unseen haul, the best twenty minutes spent of the Bali trip, and an awesome experience “checked” of the list.

After my on the toes days in Seminyak, I went to Ubud, where I met the flip side of bali. Like the myth in the ancient Roman religion where the God Janus, which has two faces, reflects on the two sides of each situation, moment and person. Likewise Bali’s other face is subdued, calm and comfortably quite. I did not planned going on any adventures from Ubud, Instead I soaked in its calm, walked the quite roads lined with restaurants of every kind, Mexican, Italian , thai, indian, and indulged in the most relaxing foot massage, just before I was scheduled to say good bye.

I did not intend anything before visiting Bali, it wasn’t a journey of spiritual search or journey towards understanding my purpose. My trip went smoothly and I did everything that I planned for. All I wanted was to have fun, meet great people, eat delicious food and pick up souvenirs for my family. And yet when I returned, I returned with an enhanced sense of completion.

When traveling solo the realization that you are on your own sinks in only when your feet touches the land of your destination, strange place surrounded with strangers. Though traveling with friends has its own perks, but traveling solo is definitely a high, a high so addictive that it kept me giddy the entire six days of my trip that by the end of it I was already making plans for my next fix.

Written By – Ritika Patel

To read the published version of the article Click Here !!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Passion !!!

To what do you owe your life? Is it your family, your work, your friends, your beliefs, your wisdom or your sheer strength? Everyone one of us owe our life to something or someone, it can be just few minutes one gets in the morning, sometimes people owe their life to that part of the day, the only time they get to be with themselves.

Somewhere deep down, I believe, we all are searching for that one thing in life that can safely be put in the box labeled passion in our mind. Don’t we? Or is it just me?
Do we not want to search that one thing/ that one person we can devote our life to? Life without passion would be life not worth anything.
Find it, find that thing you love most to do, an activity, a hobby, a long lost dream, your love, your kids, your home, your spouse, your work. It can be anything, & if you dedicate your life in finding this one thing that makes every other aspect of your life bearable, that spiral every ugly thing and shapes it into something magnificent. You WILL have it all.
Explore yourself or if needed implore with self. Ask the difficult and uncomfortable question. Be aware, this process is not easy, but no, this isn’t difficult either, it just needs a little bit more of perseverance. I have not found my passion yet and I owe my life to finding it, dig it out of me if needed. And that gives me enough zest to keep moving.
If you have your passion in your palms you will always find a way to keep moving. Happiness does this to you, motivates you to keep steering the wheel. If you have not found what your passion is, yet, any set back, bad experience, situation or people will not be able to hold you down, because without passion your soul will be translucent with no substance, and hence you will filter yourself out from any bad thing so that you can reach your destination which will not only bring you to substance but it materialize you while giving you a purpose. Once you reach there you will find all the resources in your mind to make your life something, everything!

Written By – Ritika Patel

Saturday, July 5, 2014

!!! Cherished Childhood !!!

Year - 1990
The translucent blues, made to be rolled around in dust, if you look into those bluish glass, the sheer magnificent beauty of it will make you think as if you are glancing at the universe in the night from your telescope, the grey, blue, greens and whites spread in undefined structures made me feel that If I look at it long enough it will reveal some magical world or may be some hidden realities of the life.

Counting them before the game and after it was the most important task as our heart would break if we loose even one of these beautiful Marbles, playing with it turn the hours into seconds and time flew by in sheer laughter and silly competitions of sending those marbles flying into a hand made hole in the sand.

Such was the childhood of all the 80's & the 90's adolescents.

Year - 2014
Spotting Stars in the sky is more difficult now, forgot about the constellations that we use to mark swishing our fingers to make imaginary lines to connect them, now there are as few as handful that you can spot, that too, if you have time enough to do so. Glancing out of my balcony I sometimes walk out just to stare at the sky. Why? I do not know, it just makes me a little more humbler.
I then look down to the park where some toddlers are playing in the grass, games I do not understand, some ride their bikes in the limited area of the societie's side path, group of them just sit on the stairs and discuss the life (i guess) away. I know their play time is somewhere being timed by their parents, I hardly ever see children playing without seeing their parents hovering in the background. These times are not safe, the trust is running all time low, and god forbid if you have young girls, the tension hovering over parents to not let them away from their sight in public must be exhausting.

Times are changing so fast, it makes me sad and at the same time anxious. As if you are watching through hour glass and well aware that your time is running out. But instead of watching sand flowing down, I see the memories flowing away and I try to catch some of them, remembering how easy it was to make friends then, not virtually but literally, the non-judgmental rambling, playing in the dust, wounded knees & scraped palms were treated lightly by then non obsessive parents, and with absolutely no pressure of posting something cool, quirky or witty on your FB or twitter or the pressure of increasing the number of friends on the same.

Is it my place to feel sad for these toddlers to have a techo-blanketed childhood? I do not know, but I am sad. Happy to see they are intellectually more ahead then my generation when we were young, but sad to think that maybe, just may be their generation will never find out the achievement of searching a new hiding place in the routine hide and seek game, they will never know the adrenaline pumping in your veins while you wait for the unknown next victim of "Ghoda Badam Chai", or the sheer fun of running for your life playing "Pakdam Pati", or the waiting for summer vacations to play Cards, for girls to play with doll houses and miniature kitchen sets or for boys playing with G.I Joes, or playing the life and death game of "The game of life" or "Monopoly" and tear each other up for fake money and laugh till your eyes are teary.

Written By - Ritika Patel

Saturday, April 19, 2014

!!! Reckless Innocence !!!

Innocent dreams, musical heart
Candy aspirations and friends in dolls
Monochrome life, it was beautiful
I was five and blissfully happy
Dreams to touch the sky
Heart throb to experience innocent love
Colorful life and colorful friends
Everything a little faster, a little thunderous
I look around, the luxury is minimal and assets nameless
I was fifteen and gloriously happy
One dream that you are looking for
Is nowhere to be found
Love and relationships doesn’t make sense
Life gathers around loads of possibilities
With no choices
Gather around too many questions
With no answers
A cry, that scream, those bonds
Driving you on and you are nowhere to be found
I was twenty-five and trying to remember what is "happy"
I wish for innocent dreams, innocent love
I wish for a heart filled with glorious rhythm
Monochrome people, simple friends
I am tired of learning colors and shades
I look around and see very many things
I wonder about what materialism brings
I hide away from the first ray of sun in my bedroom
I wonder about being empty
I stare at the moonlight coming in my bedroom
I wonder about being happy
I am closing to thirty…
Written By - Ritika Patel
"It is better to be meaningfully lost than to be found with no reason" 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

!!! Writer Speaks !!!

The only time I feel myself is when I write and so I hope while putting my heart down in the virtual space … I may be able to find my place in reality … !!!!

Written By - Ritika Patel

!!! ME & (?) !!!

I have five things to say,
five fingers to give into your grace.
 First, when I was apart from you,
this world did not exist, nor any other.
Second, whatever I was looking for was always you.
Third, why did I ever learn to count to three?
Fourth, you are my religion, my faith, my solitude, my nirvana
Fifth, There’s me and there’s you, is there a difference?
Written By – Rumi & …….. Ritika

Monday, October 28, 2013

!!! The Only Known Unknown !!!

It’s he who rules
My every thought,
My every opinion,
My every action
& Me

It’s he who lives
In my thoughts, in my words, in my eyes,
& in Me..
It’s he who
I feel, I breathe, I intent every day
& every night

It’s he who dominates by being
Who surpasses every known imagination
Who is described in unspoken words
Who is My start and My end
My accomplished goal
My entirety, My whole

Written By - Known



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