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Friday, December 5, 2014

That little girl...


It was a nice evening. Apart from the fact that the winters are beginning to enter Delhi and our lives, there was something very special which happened and I thought why not post about it. Nothing extraordinary, nothing life-changing for me at least, but special for sure. Ma and me had just had the evening chai and she asked me to come for a walk down the street. I agreed and we got ready for the walk. We realized that Delhi is in that amazing period when it starts turning beautiful. We had our sweat shirts on but not our mufflers yet. We chatted about my illness getting cured and how Kamaan is doing good work. We discussed about my future, her future and Pa's too. We reached the closest mall from our place (Pacific) and we went in. As we spoke we realized how 'cold' Delhi had actually become... with Shawls out, sweaters out and Delhi's eating habits enhanced, I could notice it all. We reached the food court, and I asked my mother if she wanted to have garlic bread. She refused and she pointed up. I looked up and I saw HALDIRAM'S. (A famous Indian food joint) Haldiram's, Bikanervala etc. and the likes have always been ma's favourites. She prefers clean Indian food to its 'NOT-SO-FULFILLING' western counterparts. So we went up to Haldiram's. We had a nice Raj kachori and we chatted about the documentary I am working on right now. We had a nice chat and as we started going down and we saw happy people in the mall. I was literally surrounded by an unknown happiness. Both of us moved ahead crossing the happiness. THE SPOTTING As both my mother and I were walking out, we saw a group of ladies chatting away to glory and the kids following them. We got out of the mall and as the glass gates closed behind us, we experienced the chilly air. We crossed the 'gossip' group and with my hands in my sweat shirt, I saw a little girl run happily in front of every one, following the 'Happy' group. But as we reached the main Gate, the ladies turned right and the little girl took a left, surely not knowing where she was going. As we went on talking, we realized that the girl was clearly lost. At first I thought that the little girl knew her car and was looking for it. I smiled that how smart the little kids these days are. But before my smile would appear on my face, it disappeared. My mother told me that the kid is lost. As a first reaction I looked around and I saw that there was no elder around and the kid was about 50 metres away from the mall, running into the slum nearby. THE LOST CASE I ran and bent to catch the kid's shoulder. and she looked at me with a super fair face which had gone red. It seemed she wanted to cry but she would not. BRAVE. I asked her, "Kahan jaa rahe ho aap?" (Where are you heading to?) And Ma reached us and asked the girl, " Beta mummy kahan hain aapki" (Kid, where is your mother?) And tears rolled down her cute little cheeks and i got up and said "Come with me, we'll look for your mom". She held my fingers so hard which I can't describe in it words. There was every emotion in the way she held my fingers. She was relieved that there was someone had found her, but was still scared that she was lost. We took her to the security guard and as I started asking him if there was a lady looking for a kid, a young woman came running, and hugged the girl. The girl who was holding my fingers so tight, all scared suddenly left them to give a hug to her mother. My mother gave the young woman a scolding. She looked at me and did not say anything. Her eyes told me a lot. I just smiled at both of them lost and I said "You were lucky today." Ma and me started walking back. It was indeed a cold evening and winters were setting in. We smiled at each other and Delhi was not just cold, it was special too! :)

Monday, November 24, 2014

The PERFORMANCE :)


It had been a year since our group Kamaan had performed a 'Stage' play or a proscenium form of theatre. We had been doing a lot of street plays covering a major part of North India travelling and exploring area we would go to. As Kamaan (my theatre troupe) went on performing, I went on recovering from my long-let's-forget-it-illness. And he were all set, all fresh to begin a new play. In the time I spent, my liking for writing turned to sheer love for it or may be more. This is the time when my 15 minute play 'Dustbin' slowly and gradually turned into a one and half hour play. I was discharged from the hospital. Though I was loaded with all the terrible/terrific (!) pills, but I was extremely happy to be back on the stage I was not in touch with. I was happy to be back with Kamaan. I started doing what I love the most. I started directing the play. This is a process which gives me immense pleasure. The thrill you get when you see characters in action...Characters which I had created on my hospital bed were there right in front of me, waiting for my instructions. I was loving every bit of the whole process of debating and creating characters with my actors. I was loving the stupid jokes we were coming up with and laughing at our own stupidity, in a way more serious than anything. We took the risk of getting the biggest hall we had seen booked for the show. I just wanted to throw everything that was inside me out on that stage.
So in three months and with a new cast, we could see how 'Dustbin' had happily changed into 'KACHRA'. We were in the Green room of the Kamani auditorium, which is believed to be one of the biggest in India for a live theatre performance. What gave me goosebumps was the fact that just a month before us, Om Puri had performed on it and I was standing on the stage getting the lights set as I wanted for the play. What gave me happiness was the fact that six months ago... I could not even stand up straight after sleeping for a while and walk to the loo. There speculations whether I would be normal ever again. There were speculations whether I would remember things. There were speculations whether I would LIVE. I saw my parents and Tushar go through which I would like to forget. And here I was, getting the lights fixed for a play I had written and directed. God tests you and when you pass it with a smile, he gives you a gift. May be this was my gift... of waiting for the audience to enter the auditorium and be seated and wait for the play to begin. I was getting the lights fixed for MY play. It was a huge auditorium. We had performed in a 100 seat auditorium. We had done a play in a 200 seat audience. But this auditorium of 650 seats. More than thrice the size of our last stage performance. We stood in a huddle. I hugged every actor before leaving the green room. I could literally feel all the heart beats in every hug...tensed heart beats... Nervous heartbeats... relieved heartbeats... but to my surprise ...they were happy heart beats. My own heart beats. We did a 'Ho-Kamaan' round about and I left for the director's console to see the light and sound arrangement. I could not see the audience as it was all dark. I welcomed everyone with the mic in my hand and I heard the applause. And the next one and a half hours were pure meditation. I was so lost in the play that I loved my work. They say one should not fall in love with one's own work of art as it leaves no scope of improvement. But I was in love with the effort with which people years younger than me took charge of the stage and they created magic on stage. Pure magic. Now when I look back I have loads of things I can tell you hear which we could have been better at and I am working on the next project rectifying my direction mistakes. But what was a miracle was the applause I heard when I took a bow and did a formal 'Namaste'. We have areas where I have to improve, where we need to work on, but as the curtains went down, I felt that I was back on feet, all fit and fine. Kamaan has started working on it's next show... but I guess I still can't forget the images which I can never describe in words. Ho Kamaan!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

मैं और मेरा टूथ ब्रश !


I come back to my blog afte may be a million...or a billion years. But thanks to my health getting better, I am back on my laptop, on the stage, behind the camera and every where which was out of bound for me. That morning I was brushing my teeth (like every morning) and I realised that I get the best ideas when I am brushing (PS: Albert Einstein had once said that he gets the best ideas, when he is shaving!). So, I realized why don't I give credit to the tooth brush which deserves every word of this Hindi poem... 'Main aur mera tooth brush' मैं और मेरा टुथ ब्रश सुबह-सवेरे, जब आँख खुल ही रही होती है, जब दिमाग में विचार आ ही रहे होते हैं, इन सबसे पहले आजाता है, मेरा दोस्त, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। यह कुछ कहता नहीं है, कोई राय नहीं देता, सिर्फ सुनता है, शांति से, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। पूरे दिन के शुरुआत की योजना, सारी परेशानियों के हल की संभावनाएं, सुनता है, आराम से, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। सुबह की चाय से लेकर, रात के खाने तक, सबका स्वाद चखता है, चुप चाप, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। कपड़े धोने बाद में सीखा, जूते पर पॉलिश लगाना बाद में सीखा, पर सबसे पहले सीख लिया मैंने, ब्रश करना, अपने टूथ ब्रश से। जब दाँत आए ही थे, और बोलना सीखा भी न था, ना समझा था मैंने जीवन के रसों को, तब से शांति से सुनता आरहा है, हर सुबह, ये टूथ ब्रश, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। पहले सिर्फ एक शौक था, कौनसी कंपनी का, कौनसे रंग का, पर आज मेरी ज़रूरत बन गया है, मेरा प्यारा, शांत, मेरा टूथ ब्रश। पर अब मैं देखता हूँ आस-पास, और सोचता हूँ, की कौन है जो मुझे सुनते-समझते आ रहा हैं, शायद मेरे टूथ ब्रश की तरह। मेरे स्कूल के दोस्त? नहीं। मेरे कॉलेज के साथी? नहीं। मेरे ऑफिस के मित्र? नहीं। बस वो दो ही शख्स हैं, जो मुझे देखते-समझते आ रहे हैं, मेरे टूथ ब्रश से भी पहले से। और उससे ज़्यादा शांति से। मेरे माता-पिता। मेरे टूथ ब्रश को हर रोज़ का सलाम ज़रूर, पर मेरे माँ-बाप को ज़िंदगी भर का नमस्कार, ज़िंदगी भर का नमस्कार, ज़िंदगी भर का नमस्कार :)

Sunday, August 10, 2014

ALWAYS


There are 2 options always: One is the easy way out, but a bad one and the second is the tough way out, but a good one. So, the choice is always yours. ALWAYS! :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

क्या फायदा...


क्या फायदा... "क्या फाइदा उस महंगी छत का जब बारिश ही न गिरे, क्या फायदा दोस्तों का, जब दोस्ती ही नहीं रहे, क्या फायदा लज़ीज़ खाने का, जब खाने वाले ही न हो, क्या फ़ायदा सुन्दरता का, जब साथ कमेरा ही न हो, क्या फायदा फ़ायदों का, जब फायदा ही न समझ आए, क्या फायदा?" -क्ष.ह.स.`

Friday, July 18, 2014

that universe


That universe... In a parallel universe, far off from here, Cameroon has won the Fifa world cup and Bangladesh the cricket World cup, petrol is super cheap and onions cheaper. Where issues like Gaza and Kashmir do not exist and people are happy. There is no concept of being rich and poor. No wars, no conflicts....just peace and happiness. But my only doubt is, where does this universe exist? WHERE?

Monday, July 14, 2014

GOD


From Chittaurgarh, we travelled to Ajmer, in search of God, in the hot weather with the Rajasthani villages, we kept travelling in the big search, we reached the Dargah, with the marb;e floor and a million people, offering Sajdas, but I kept looking around for the big God, my search would have ended with a failure, But suddenly I saw an old face, who came to me and asked, "What are you searching for?" I Said, "GOD" He Smiled and said, "He is not out side, he is inside u. Look in" I smiled. We both smiled.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

वो बत्ती !

" वो छोटी सी गुमराह बत्ती, वो अदृश्य सी रोशनी। जलती थी ठीक सामने मेरे खिड़की के। अंजान सी, अदृश्य सी। जो थी वहीं, हर शाम, हर रात। पर दुख तो हुमे तब तक न था, जब हो गयी वो बत्ती गायब, वो रोशनी गायब, और शायद, हम भी गायब। वो छोटी सी गुमराह बत्ती, वो अदृश्य सी रोशनी।" - क्ष. ह. सि (khs)

Monday, May 12, 2014

My struggles... My fights


My struggles... my Life It all started with the famous author's famous author's equally popular lines that when you want something to happen and believe in the event, every element in the universe conspires that it happens and it eventually happens. My story begins with the fact that I wanted to work in a feature film right after I finished my course at NID. So I did the same. I finished my course there and joined Anand Gandhi's'The Ship of Thesis' in Bombay and the big struggle began. I started working on the film, but at the same time, I also kept trying to work at AKFPL (Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt. ltd). I got a call soon for Shlok Sharma's film 'Haraamkhor', starring Nawazuddin Siddique. I got a chace to work with my favourite actor. The story was ready and on the editor's desk soon and things were happening too soon for me. I did not even get to know and Fukrey happened equally fast and I shot the making. Amidst all this, I got to be Dibakar Bannerjee's (one of my favourite directors of the present lot) director's assistant for his next film 'bombay Talkies', and I got to work with Nawaz sir again. It was after all this that I realised that I need to get back to theatre and start my theatre group. So I eventually shifted to Delhi and started with 'Kamaan', and this too is happening very fast for me. God sent me to Banaras for a workshop, where I was super active with the kids, and I got my first set of fits there and doubts about hemorrhage there and was in AIIMS soon after this. We did 'Dustbin' after this and had a nice set of shows in Delhi and NID and the group was visibly happy. We got a client for our first set of performances in Rajasthan and travelled there. But the doctor made sure that I was admitted to the Neuron-surgery ward and the big treatment began. All this was happening and I shifted to my present house in West Delhi in Subhash Nagar happily with Tushar. Meanwhile, I shifted my base from Bombay to Delhi and I could see that things were changing for me, and I could see that all happening right in front of my eyes with my parents being an active part of the whole process acting as elements conspiring to make the process active. I am presently in Puttur very active, working again on things I want to do (my next play 'Naamen-Clature' and my next set of plays on HIV-Aids which Kamaan is doing and on Near-miss cases in Pant Nagar and the air-fare to Orissa.) I know this is not very normal that you look at your own life and get inspired, or maybe this is showing off, but it does push you and inspire you, for sure. I am also itching to get back to films and My-crow thinking and I am sure I will get back soon. There is no over-confidence in this, but I am happy that there is confidence, for sure. Right now, shooting in Puttur. On the 10th of June, I am back to Delhi and for sure, back to life. For sure!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Language


Puttur Diaries (Contd :3) There is a tamil - accented telugu every one is comfortable with and seems to be exploring the 'new language' and people are taking this language to newer levels. How could I stay behind, with my Telugu not aesome itself, but this language was definitely pulling me into its trap and the people were definitely helping me get lost in the huge trap thwy were throwing on me with the awesome 'Jhataak' Telugu fils one starring Allu arvind and one starring Sunil as the big stars and super cheap tickets compared to Delhi and Bombay and lots of stories for me :) As the language search continues my big search with the good road side food continues :)

The cheap coconuts and inexpensive cheap stuff


With the cute mother I have and the cheap coconuts we get at Puttur. You also get super cheap vegetables early in the morning, where all the farmers with stuff to sell to the market, sell it to us and disappear. So you need to go for a walk and while coming back you buy vegetables, all fresh and good. Also while coming back you stop at the road side food stalls who are constantly cooking idlis, dosas ,vadas and awesome filter coffees for you at prices which are awesomely. It is just that I had have Brain hemorrhage and I should not be having a lot of street food, but can't help it and it is good food. Oh Puttur. Paradise it is!

The Alavelamma visit


(The Puttur Diaries-3 Contd.) A recent visit to the age old temple of goddess Padmavathi was uncalled for. The temple is quite old with a Hindu story as old as the temple itself. They say that the place, Alavelamma is as old as the 'Devasthanam'/ the religious temple itself. The story goes that the God came, married one of his wives, took her with him to the big temple, but left the other wife here, at this temple. This temple is beautiful, with a town well-settled around the temple (Puttur) and has a population of its own. The God, who is believed to be a Roopam of Lord Vishnu himself, has been moving around the hills in the search of truth. This place has always been beautiful with people coming from areas around (Andhra and Tamil Nadu) in search of truth which is their own search. The place had a queue and a prasadam of its own, with many kids in their own worlds. I saw a lot of half naked kids in their parents' hands. This is what looked like a world of happiness to me, where you the real world in their eyes, so true, so honest. This was so honest that you could definitely see glimpses of God there, which you could not spot anywhere else. You could have any laddu anywhere else, but you could not have the same temple 'desi ghee 15-rupee temple laddu' The religion is no doubt a big question of faith and other things similar, but yes, you do get some answers when you come to a place as beautiful this. I continue with my explorations:).

Thursday, May 1, 2014

The whole whole 'Rural' film experience

It was a new experience for me at puttur, experience a film, which was definititely out of the world, compared to the multiplex one at Delhi or Bombay, compared to the smaller one here at Puttur, a much smaller hall, with a ticket which was super cheap and much lower in technicalities and other things. The film was also quite different to the ones at the ones at Delhi or Bombay or even at Hyderabad, or even the one at Tirupati for me. Not just the editing and the way it was shot but also the sound of the hall but also the toilets of the film, which definitely took me to a level which I can't write or talk about in this space. It definitely gave me space and opened me up to go back home and write more about my thoughts and gave me that big break which I needed from a long time. So, the hero (Allu Arjun) and the heroine (Shruti Hassan) definitely gave me the much desired space and the film gave me the much desired pakoda which my body needed and I went back home happy and satisfied :)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Men in Yellow


These are men who walk from Puttur to Tirupati. They take long walks from Puttur and take non-stop walks and respond to words like 'govinda', which you need to shout at them. So they are constantly walking and forcing you to talk about them. It is fun! The power here is going bad, but I like the way it is going bad, the way it is shaky and moving things, for me, forcing me to write and shoot things. It is the constant power cuts which are forcing me to write plays and Gokul and that is keeping me happy and I like the way they are placed. Isn't it? :) Though I am getting some fits here and there but I am also getting to read my friend's book 'A Night of Journey', a book by Ayn Rynd, which sounds nice. Thanks for the book Sumedha. Meanwhile, the writing continues. Will keep you posted.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Schedule


Puthur Diaries (Contd.) The schedule So, my schedule here is quite different was in Delhi or Mumbao or Hyderabad or in any other town I was living in. It is so little that you have just time and nothing else to think and rethink to think about schedules and nothing. I know it gets boring at times. The problem here is that there is no power when you want to work, with frequent power cuts and I have to get down to ways of writing on my diaries and note pads, which is nice and warm for me, and I always thought that is how I always was, right from the ground and not the other way round :) So one thing which I have learnt here is to make chai for myself, which is like a huge accomplishment for me, as now i don't depend on any one for chai, but I won't mind one anyone doing it for me. So I make one for myself and that also gives me a motive to get up early listening to the azaan, make chai and in the process begin writing or may be just thinking. If that ways I look at life, I feel it is so much more fun than the way we have made it. Isn't it? After I have not-so bad chai, I go for a walk, to the nearby degree college grounds (Puttur Degree college), where I meet smiling facing faces and while coming back, I get milk. What is also nice for a small village is that almost every one knows every one and all the men smile when they look at you. Very inspiring it gets and you continue to write. The place has very limited access to internet, and I am currently sitting at one of those. I like the owner here, and I guess he likes me too. He took me to his house in a nearby village (KBR puram), and I loved his family there. They made a good lunch for me (with awesome veg and non-veg food). I ended up making this short film and he is happy (Link...) after this, i was left with questions in my mind, so i ended up making this film too. (mct film) We are good friends and I am exploring good food there, which is very close to the famous temple town of Tirupati (just 40 minutes), nd I am looking forward to good food I have heard of there and most probably, another film with my parents. Let us see :)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The old lady

Puthur Diaries (Contd)- The Schedule


So, my schedule here is quite different was in Delhi or Mumbao or Hyderabad or in any other town I was living in. It is so little that you have just time and nothing else to think and rethink to think about schedules and nothing. I know it gets boring at times. The problem here is that there is no power when you want to work, with frequent power cuts and I have to get down to ways of writing on my diaries and note pads, which is nice and warm for me, and I always thought that is how I always was, right from the ground and not the other way round :) So one thing which I have learnt here is to make chai for myself, which is like a huge accomplishment for me, as now i don't depend on any one for chai, but I won't mind one anyone doing it for me. So I make one for myself and that also gives me a motive to get up early listening to the zaan, make chai and in the process begin writing or may be just thinking. If that ways I look at life, I feel it is so much more fun than the way we have made it. Isn't it? After I have not-so bad chai, I go for a walk, to the nearby degree college grounds (Puttur Degree college), where I meet smiling facing faces and while coming back, I get milk. What is also nice for a small village is that almost every one knows every one and all the men smile when they look at you. Very inspiring it gets and you continue to write. The place has very limited access to internet, and I am currently sitting at one of those. I like the owner here, and I guess he likes me too. He took me to his house in a nearby village (KBR puram), and I loved his family there. They made a good lunch for me (with awesome veg and non-veg food). I ended up making this short film and he is happy (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9oY-XJs7m_k) after this, i was left with questions in my mind, so i ended up making this film too. We are good friends and I am exploring good food there, which is very close to the famous temple town of Tirupati (just 40 minutes), nd I am looking forward to good food I have heard of there and most probably, another film with my parents. Let us see :)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Puttur Diaries

Puttur Diaries April, 2014 The beginning I had been diagnosed with brain hemorrhage in AIIMS in Delhi and things were not moving the way they should have been. Not for me, not for Kamaan, and sadly, for anything. Was really nice was that I had some people around who loved me and cared for me. Firstly it was people like Tushar, who was somehow really involved with my work, thanks to the woman who was always with me: My mother. Always supportive, always helping and suffering with all the journeys I had been sadly a part of. So we reach this place called Puttur miles away from Delhi, and periods away from a condition I was in. Pa was working in this organisation, letting people getting admitted in it and hence, he had got an accommodation in the village, which somehow reminded me of the way the British officers would come to India, long ago. They would come, reach this beautiful place called India and explore. More than the place, they would look inside and explore themselves. This is one of those journeys for me. I was lucky that I realized that this was giving me opportunities to look inside and see things which were always there, but I never noticed them. Things like writing and love and may be my hemorrhage were just excuses. My journey had just begun...

Friday, March 14, 2014

The little boy


(Based on my stay at this minute village in AP called Puttur and the explorations which surround the stay... Have been writing and it has been fun) The little boy in the village, is not that little. He is lost in issues which are not his own, gone in questions, which have answers , he does not know of, faces, he is not very proud of, legs he does not want to show the city people, or maybe the other village people, or maybe tastes he does not love, or maybe he knows, could have been better, or may be much better, The little boy in the village, is not that little.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Puthur

Puthur, (between Hyderabad, Chennai and Bangalore): Loving the food, watch kharishsingh.blogspot.blogpot.com or Mycrowthinking.blogspot.com for more :) I like the fact that Kamaan has a boy who works at some cafe, another boy who earns from dance, a couple of students who teach tuitions, all this doing with doing the present play at Kamaan, which is beautiful. Ho Kamaan :) Loving the awesome telugu food (attus/ dosas, idlis and the awesome vadas. Heavenly!) Loving every part of this village, it is just beautiful, plain beautiful. Writing Gokul :) I am loving every bit about it. ..........................................

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Very few can :)

Not all people who can float, can swim... only a few can swim... Very few can :)

Friday, February 14, 2014

A new journey

5:05 am It has been a nice morning to freedom. Madella has been dead for a long time. RIP Balu Mahenndra and the country has been busy with wars on Telengana I too have been sadly busy with those disputes. Yesterday, on Valentine's the MP's have clashed in the Parliament, in households busy with little disputes. I have been losing consciousness on issues which I have been losing on issues which I have been losing on, which are not mine. I got an ambulance to home and Ma and Tushar got it home. Meanwhile, I have questions to doctors and nurses and they have supposed answers to me. We have been moving positively in a direction positively! We are moving for a vacation to the south with dad, for a shoot, with dad, and re-working on my memory and on a play. All cool!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

So the big shift happened from the hospital to the new house, with new ideas and projects coming in. The theatre moving in directions unknown and unseen to mankind, may be to the living beings, but it kept happening all happy and positive! What is nice is the fact that the speed did not lower , and we continued the way KAMAAN had stopped, with the client-owned projects were encouraging us, to write and direct more documentaries and theatre. With the travel and the beautiful locations we moved and is still fun. But as we move amidst all the questions and doubts, what is nice is the fact, that somewhere, THE BIG SHIFT IS STILL HAPPENING...