Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Swayamwar-Part2

If you haven't read Part1 then this story would make no sense to you.

Rajkumari kept looking at her toes as mantris described each charming prince. Her heart was pounding to hear just one name- Prithviraj. Each time with each next prince her heart fluttered a little bit and yet after 9 princes Prithviraj’s name was not announced. Rajkumari started wondering whether Prithviraj had even arrived or decided to attend. Finally the 10th prince was announced.

Suno suno lokvasiyo (listen all you great warriors)! Standing in front of you is the ambitious, most graceful, humble ruler of Magadh. Known for conquering the world he stands 6 feet tall. His praja (people) call him their savior, his enemies call him raw fear. Dressed in white and adorned by pearls- Raja Prithviraj.

Rajkumari immediately raised her eyes and in that instant met Prithviraj’s eyes. Ah! She said. He gave her the brightest smile in the world. She wasn’t supposed to look, but yet she did. For that moment the entire court paused. It was him and her. She was pulled out of this charm by the sound of a drum indicating the commencement of the competition. Prithviraj turned around and started walking towards the stadium. He was strong built and walked tall. Dressed in white he spilled aura around himself. Rajkumari kept staring at him. Hoping against hope for that one last look. Just as he was about to enter the arena, he turned and smiled at her again. She knew it then, that it would be him or no one. This was what her heart said, but being the individual she was, she immediately warned her heart and asked it to be practical. It wasn’t about the grace, nor the charm. It wasn’t about what her resources had told her. She wanted to know for herself if Prithviraj was intellectually compatible and how emotionally involved he would be. A man who won so many wars, who achieved so many victories, would he be able to bend his ego once in a while? Would he be able to discuss strategies and accept if she gave him a better solution that what he had? Would he accept her going on a war instead of going Sati? So many questions, but how could and would she get the answers to them. She had to think of something quickly, very quickly before the final ceremony. She kept thinking of some solution, but none came to her mind. Suddenly Rajkumari heard Dwarka’s voice, who was telling her for a while to walk to the arena throne. She got up and slowly walked toward the viewing area. The seating area was located very high and allowed viewing of entire area. The audience was cheering, the place sparking with energy. The first two princes engaged in a chariot race. The winner would continue to progress to the next round. Loser would leave the arena. The competition was about speed, skill of handling animals, balance and concentration. The prince would need a good pair of horses, most trusted ones. He would spend time going to the stable, taking care of these animals and winning their trust. It was one of the skils Rajkumari was looking for as well. The competition between first two princes went straight forward, winner was clear. Such went the other players, till Prithviraj arrived. His chariot was strong built. White horses tied to the golden chariot. He looked like Arjuna from Mahabharata standing in his chariot. Confidence sparked around him. Rajkumar Hiram was next to him on a chariot of black horses. He looked equally graceful but it was in the previous race that he had ruthlessly pushed the other prince out of his tracks. These kinds of things were common at Swayamwar. Rajkumari watched impatiently as the signal for race was given. Prithviraj’s horses quickly gained the lead. As they reached the midpoint of the track, suddenly Rajkumar Hiram’s chariot sped and dashed against Prithviraj’s causing Prithviraj to lose his balance for a moment. Suddenly Prithviraj turned to look at Hiram. His expression was changed to that of anger. His horses seem to understand his language and immediately changed tracks. Rajkumari shifted in her chair restless. It was in that moment she saw him put his right hand on his sword. She gasped. She knew what he was about to do and feared it might disqualify him. His horses didn’t need much control, it seemed like they understood the slightest nudge he gave them. Again Hiram’s chariot approached from the right and was about to dash against Prithviraj’s chariot, at that very moment Prithviraj slowed down and Hiram raced completely out of the track. It took him ten minutes to get back on the track and back in the race; in the meantime Prithviraj had gained enough ground and crossed over the finish line. Rajkumari gave a sigh of relief. But her mind raced. Why did Prithviraj hold his sword? Could he kill to win this competition? Was it winning that mattered to him or was it the anger against injustice and cheating? In either case she needed to know more about him. How would she? The next competition was that of focus and concentration, skill with bow and arrow.

To be continued...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Swayamwar

For the longest time I have wanted to write these little fictional stories, these stories I would think of either while travelling on bus or just walking down the block. I would take the time to even write them on the word doc and then would delete the document without saving. This is so stupid, I would say to myself. No one is going to like this or even read this. But then today I decided, well what the heck. Let me just list out this one story and see how it goes. Like I said in my earlier post, I have too many cobwebs to clean around this blog :). So let me take you on another journey, something different from our day to day lives and yet a part of it. Let’s travel to the good old days of maharaja’s and rajputs. Of kingdoms and wars. Of bravery, strategy, romance and victory. Excited?

Rajkumari Shrutkirti was sitting in front of the mirror admiring herself while all around dasis were giggling and making fun of her. Dwarka was lovingly teing her plait while Menaka was putting payal on her feet. The latest design from Sriman Kevat, who claimed this was the same payal ordered by Rajkumari Mandavi of Bundi. Rajkumari Shrutkirti admired her feet, the beautiful payal with artistic design adorned her lovely feet and shined against her milk white skin. The pearls attached to the payal made it even more beautiful. She stomped her feet lightly on the ground and little sounds made all the dasis around laugh. This was a big day for Rajkumari Shrutkirti. It was her Swayamwar. She has dreamt over and over of this day. Painted pictures of various rajkumar’s were laid out in front of her. These she had received 1 month ago. Being the youngest and the only daughter of Raja Mansingh, she had the right to choose, rather she had wickedly achieved it by displaying crocodile tears and weaving stories around “Banno ki shaadi songs”. Mansingh has given in and sent messengers/riders to neighboring kingdoms (near and far) requesting painted pictures of grooms interested in the Swayamwar. The paintings were of all shapes and kinds, some ridiculously good to be true and some looked as if the kingdom may be on the verge of losing its last possible painter. Rajkumari, however relied very less on these paintings and more on the inside information she obtained via her appointed ally’s in various divisions of the kingdom. There was the finance minister who informed of wealth and health of various kingdoms. The head of all natya, gayan and kala (music and arts) who informed of the latest architectural improvements or activities around various kingdoms. The war strategist who spoke to the bravery and skills in various victories. So overall she had a pretty good idea and had shortlisted the top 5 potential princes she would consider. Ofcourse there would be day long contests among the princes to prove their skills (archery, swordfighting, hunting and what not). But Rajkumari hardly cared about those. She was more interested in finding the right diamond in the mix, one who would be politically powerful and emotionally compatible. Prithviraj, that was the one she had in mind. One who has conquered many kingdoms, showed mercy to even his worst enemies, spent time listening to the pleas of his people even at 2.00 am in the morning. He was the one , she knew it. So when the day of Swayamwar arrived, she wanted to look her best. From head to toe she was decorated in gold. She picked white, that was her color. White beautiful saree and gold jewelry to match it- the kamabandh (waist band), arm band, beautiful pearl earrings, pearl nose ring. She had heard, Prithviraj was fond of pearls. He had adorned his own crown with pearls. So pearls were for her.

Finally Raja Mansingh entered the room and stood there. Dasis quickly disappeared without a sound. Mansingh walked up to his daughter and held her face in both his hands. Beautiful! He exclaimed. How will this kingdom ever remain the same without you? It’s time Rajkumari, lets walk to the mandal (open hall). Though her eyes were filled with tears, inwardly she smiled. It was the day she would finally meet Prithviraj. She quietly walked with her father and sat on the throne next to him. Her eyes fixed on her feet. Princes from states far and near had come to attend the swayamwar. Talks of Rajkumari’s beauty was spread far and wide. Rajkumari only hoped Prithviraj would be there. She knew she wasn’t supposed to look up, but bold as she was, she did. There was queue of princes and she could only see that far. Each prince was supposed to step forward, one of his assistant (mantri ) would describe his valor and he would step aside for the next prince.


Woah! This is turning out to be a really long post. How about you tell me how you like it and then we continue with the rest of Swayamwar? :)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Estate Sale- Everything must go!

I have gone into the shell, in hiding from the world. I have wandered, explored new places. I have learnt, taught and returned. In the meantime my blog sat here gathering dust. Now I have the massive work of cleaning up cobwebs, sweeping, polishing and making it current. I may or may not succeed in this effort but I’ll try.

Where do I start- ah yes something that reminded me of blogging, of sharing- Garage Sale!

Oh yes, the good old sign “9 AM to 12 PM- this Friday- come one- come all”. This has been my latest addiction. I wander to Garage Sales or to be more specific Estate Sales. The difference between the 2:

Garage Sale: Lot of times stuff that families don’t want, or rather think they don’t want. It occupies space, has very less emotional value and can be sold or traded.

Estate Sale: The person owning the estate has passed away, next generation remaining is getting rid of the stuff- of everything- memories, material stuff, the house itself. Everything has to go!

I know it kinda sounds sad. Why go to an estate sale you may ask? I wandered to one of those about a month ago and found it fascinating. Journey with me, will you?

Estate Sale! Come one- come all! 9 AM to 5 PM. Antiques, Glassware, Expensive stuff. Everything must go!

I note down the address and detour to the Estate Sale. Couple of estate sale professionals are at the door. A pleasant lady with a counter (to collect cash/card) is in the garage. They all have pleasant smiles. They all welcome me in. I take the first step in the house. House or Home, I think. I think of things I associate with a home. Smells that are unique to an home. This one doesn’t have any. Just of dust and closed doors. Of cobwebs and old furniture. I step inside. There is staircase going down and one going up. I think for a bit on which one to take. People are flocking, some running upstairs, some downstairs. As they run, the wooden staircase makes a creaking sound. I think back to my own home, the creaks, and the sounds. I know them all. Did the person who lived here know them too?

I randomly pick going upstairs; the stairs lead to an open hall. The room is lit with light. There are curtains on the window, the self-created kind. Very artistic. Someone in this family knew sewing very well. Just as I begin to admire the curtain, someone pushes past me and pulls on to one curtain. In a harsh voice the lady asks, “Is this for sale?, how much?”. My expression changes to that of pain. Pleasant lady answers “Yes ma’am, everything is for sale”. I didn’t want to buy the curtains, but just the sheer act of not stopping to admire the curtain, treating it like any other stuff pains me. I move on.

There is jewelry laid out on the table, everything tagged with a price. I immediately touch the ring on my little finger with my thumb:

The ring on the right hand little finger with the green stone: Mum said always wear it. It will keep you smart. I smile at myself, it didn’t really.

The ring on my index finger, it pearl: It will keep you calm Mum had said. I started to believe it did. Years passed and I kept it. Now its sealed to my finger.

Chain: The first piece of jewelry mum made for me, when I was a kid.

I watch the jewelry laid out on the table. There is a ring in a blue jewelry box. Was it an engagement ring? Maybe wedding ring? Someone stops by and picks up the ring box. Is this real?, she asks. Yes, says the pleasant lady. How much? She asks. Let me check, says the pleasant lady. Never mind, she says. I don’t like the design anyways, she says. I walk away.


I wander into the kitchen. She is here, I can feel her, I can sense her. The spice rack in the corner is filled with spices. The crystal bowls are arranged, clean in corner. Cake makers are a plenty, worn out, used far too many times. She loved cooking. I touch the spice rack, an old piece with 25 glass spice containers, beautiful. Wooden box holding them. Hung on the wall, just on the right spot. I touch it and dust sticks to my fingers. I look and smile. I want this one, I tell one of the estate sale professionals. Can you help me remove it from the wall? I ask. Yes, ma’am, let me get it for you. The guy holds the rack and pulls on it. My eyes widen in shock. He breaks the wood hook holding the rack and hands the rack to me. Here you go ma’am. I hold it as if it were a baby, hug the rack and growl at the professional. I walk away.

Angry and hurt I walk into the bedroom. Why am I angry? What’s bothering me, I ask myself. No answer. I look at the queen size bed, wooden frame, ancient looking, beautiful. Across it is a dresser and mirror. Beautiful. There is jewelry box, wooden, empty on the dresser. There is brush on the dresser. I walk to the dresser and look at myself in the mirror holding the spice rack. I see a faint shadow behind me. I turn, there is just bright light, no one there. I touch the jewelry box. Engraved is a design on the top. Little wooden drawers to keep beautiful jewelry. I love it. Its beautiful I say out loud, not to anyone in particular. I look at the brush, it’s pretty, silver and has one hair, white, long, stuck in the needles. I touch the hair and hear loud noise of kids. Lady and 4 kids. Kids climb the bed and start jumping. I pick the jewelry box and leave.

I don’t feel like checking out any other rooms. I go downstairs, there is a nice cozy wooden rocking chair. A knitted shawl hanging on one of its arms. Settled next to it is a huge basket with lots of wool and needles. There are patterns and works in progress. I stop by to look at the basket. Pleasant lady approaches, smiles at me and says “Take all for just $5”. I look up at her and smile. I will, I say. I ask her to set it aside for me. I walk into the garage and immediately smile. There is a santa-big porcelain structure, decorations, large chritmas tree, beautiful decorations to hang on the tree. Yes, I say to myself. This was a house of memories, of turkey dinners, of get-togethers, of graduation, of first car rides, of proms, of dreams..this is a home.

I take all the stuff I picked to the counter and pay. I walk away and just as I get to my car, I turn to look. I see the house spick and span. I see the flowers blooming, I see kids playing. I see it all, I see the home it was. I see the home it will be.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

2010 is gone? Already?

It’s weird, I visited many blogs and yet very few which talk about 2010. I don’t know if you agree or not but 2010 was just ridiculously fast, it was really in a hurry and didn’t even wait for a single breath. This made me curious as to what all happened during 2010, I surfed the net and found tons of events, so I shortlisted them from what I remembered happened during 2010.

1. Earthquake devastates Haiti
Surprised at how many natural calamities strike earth each year, we are really testing the tolerance limit of our planet, aren’t we? It’s high time we drop some irrelevant research and invest in finding planets we can move people to, that would certainly make earth happy.

2. BP Oil Rig explodes off Louisiana gulf coast
All I remember was reading and watching this news for several days, especially the picture of leaking oil and felt bad for the poor fish, they must hate us. I can imagine them discussing:
Shark: Grrrr we have been too tolerant, the next time I swim by the coast to watch little kids building sand castles (sooo cute), I am totally throwing up some fish guts on someone

Pufferfish: (puffing away) What is that black stuff and what do humans do with it, its just causing me to puff even more

Shoal of herring: Cool, lets imitate this black thing and confuse the predators. I kind of like this stuff, though its making me sick now.

Though I am making fun of this event, it was kind of sad.

3. Supreme Court overturns ban on direct corporate spending on elections
Always wondered how politicians here could manage to run such great advertisements and campaigns on television where as in India you would find some people hanging out of a rickshaw with loudspeakers during all odd times of days and advertising:
“Jeet hogi jhadu ki, vote ki nishani jhadu”

4. Rescue of Chilean Miners
The first Chilean miner rescued was exciting but watching all 33, every single one of them. Don’t get me wrong I was completely impressed at technology. But really 24 hours of watching chilean miner arriving one after another was really boring, meaning after first few rescued guys I was pretty sure, rest would arrive quite safely. But hubby dear wanted to see the entire thing, apparently it’s kind of historic.

5. Toyota Recall
Changed my attitude towards Toyota, wonder if I would buy that car now. Possibly every part of that car could potentially be recalled.

6. Ash Cloud from Iceland Volcano Shuts Down European Air Travel
Lots and lots of people were stuck at the airport and it was quite a nuisance. But somewhere I really wanted to see the whole ash thing.

7. The 2010 Winter Olympics are held in Vancouver and Whistler, Canada.
This was the first time I thought I truly enjoyed and watched Winter Olympics. Maybe being so near to Canada was one of the reasons. Btw, I watched it on tv not in person.

8. XIX Commonwealth Games, were held in Delhi, India, from 3 to 14 October 2010
After all the caos and nonsense finally the Commonwealth games took place and in the end it all wasn’t so bad. Just like all events, we created a lot of negative advertising for the event.

That was glimpse of 2010, the year went fast and I think 2011 is moving even faster.

So what do you think will happen in 2011:
- Islands shifting, new emerging
- China finally taking over the world
- US economy getting back on its feet
- Mystical creature spotted somewhere
- We find life on some planet
- Planes travel faster than ever (in 3hrs to India)

Edited (thought of one more list entry)

- Device will be built combining all possible technologies (kinect, iphone so on). This device will recognise you, change into a phone, computer, tv (changes size), will recognize your emotion and talk to you.

This is a random list and not much thought is given when building it. Feel free to chip in and add.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Cooking and Recipes

Every week I search on internet for recipes. Am I a good cook, do I like cooking? Well, no and no to both. I am an ok cook but a fervent eater, who loves new recipes and in general eating yummy food, be it traditional homemade or all fancy culinary stuff. So I visit all these traditional recipe sites and then go to my kitchen and pretend that I am participating in Top Chef or something. Trust me for a person like me who has to find some means to motivate and go to kitchen, this works. Just this week, I tried making tortellini pasta. Nope not from scratch, you get these tortellini pasta packets in Costco. Ok ok that’s not much of cooking, but still is something , no? I love pasta and atleast once a week we have it.

I keep a pot of boiling water, how much water, well I have this big pot, I simply fill it up and put it on the stove. There is no logic, no thought. I feel it would hold one packet of tortellini pasta and that’s it. Then I put a pan on another stove, this is for the sauce. And a third pot to blanche the tomatoes. About 6-7 tomatoes. That’s how many I would need to some sort of sauce to show up on the plate. Now in most of the Indian cooking, there is gravy. We like a lot of gravy, and spices, so when cooking pasta I try to recreate the same experience, only using Italian ingredients. I let both pots with water come to boil, for the pasta pot I add some salt (again, how much you ask?, tilt the salt holder and think of not pouring too much, that’s how much :)) and to the tomato pot, I just drop the tomatoes and turn off the burner.

Oops forgot about the pan, its red hot and I need to start putting stuff in it. So I reduce the heat, turn the burner to like 1 or really low. I cut some shallots about 3-4 (if they are small). Then I squish about 4 cloves of garlic, yep love garlic. Why squish? I think the taste stays intact and I hate removing skins and all neatly. And there is a kind of pleasure you would get, to keep the knife horizontal on the garlic clove and stomp it with your fist. Then hold the tail end of the garlic and the skin just comes off. And somewhere you feel a pride of saving few seconds of tedious clove peeling:). Now turn the pan stove to medium, put some olive oil. How much? Till you don’t feel guilty, the moment oops this is a little too much comes to mind, stop that very instant. Immediately you will feel, ahh that looks okie. Put in the garlic cloves and watch them turn brown. Add the shallots and let them turn soft, slightly golden. In the meantime drain the water from the tomatoes. Take 6 mushrooms, any type and cut them into pieces, any size you like. They shrink so don’t think too much. You don’t need to be precise or neat either, be fast though. As soon as the shallots turn golden, you would want to drop these in the pan. So drop them in the pan. Turn gas to high and let them cook well, shrink in size. Drain the water from the tomato pot. Now the tomatoes will still be steaming hot, so add some cold water. And then take each tomato, peel the skin and cut them. The juices will come out on the cutting board and there would only be enough space to cut 2 at a time. So start cutting the tomatoes when you see the mushrooms are almost done.

Now if you are me, you have forgotten about the tortellini pasta which is cooking and its when the water steams off and falls creating a sizzling noise, will you know the pasta was cooking. So go to the pasta, dig one of them with a fork. If it looks cooked that’s good. Just turn off the gas. I don’t like to drain the water then, just coz the pasta sticks together. Go back to the cutting board and add the tomatoes to the pan. Remember all the skin you peeled, cut that too. Add it to the pan. Now the spices, if you have any cooking wine or any wine at all, just add a little bit to the pan. It removes all the nice flavors that were stuck to the pan and the alcohol cooks away. Open a can of black olives, cut in half and add them. Add parsley, italain seasonsing (you get this at fredmeyer or any store really), add 1 spoon honey (this is the exotic ingredient I like to add), add basil, salt, pepper. Now 2 more spices I add from time to time are fresh cut dill and red chili powder (just to give it a degree of hot taste). Add about 2-3 spoons of low fat sour cream. This gives you the gravy. Add salt and taste. If it’s good for you, it’s good for anyone :). Drain the water from tortellini, add them to the sauce, mix well and serve.

Well I think I did well in this top chef episode, do you? Have a great time tyring some new recipes and eat some great food during 2011.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Secret-Always hard to keep

When you are told to keep a secret what do you do? Do you have this urge of telling the first person you see, whether you know the person or not? Do you share it with your mom who explains how it’s absolutely disastrous to share a secret and then goes on and on about how it’s a sin you told her, now that she too has to keep it a secret? Do you tell your dad, who if like mine totally finds it uninteresting and lame. Dude it’s a secret, get it. Someone somewhere doesn’t want it to be shared with anyone. Itsss aaa secretttt shhhh. But well, that’s what men do, don’t they? They don’t have secrets, there are no boundaries of what to say or not say when having conversations. Keep our wife, family and kids topics out and there will be no secrets. Also, when you can talk hours and hours about politics, money market and cricket, why would you need any other complicated topics which lead to secrets.

So what do I do when someone tells me to hear them out and then just shut up? Not a word to anyone. Not even a single syllable. Well, I feel as if I have a knot in my stomach. Now if the person had never told me explicitly that it's a secret, I wouldn’t care less. But now after pointing out not to tell, how do I seriously not tell? Don’t get me wrong, I am not the kind of friend who would go share secrets, but this is just an urge of telling someone. Just a little bit you know. And like all good women, I have managed to kill, stab and poke this urge out of my system everytime. But then what’s the harm if you share it with your mom who is like seven seas away and has no remote connection to this so called person whatsoever right?

Ma: (after sharing pleasantries) What else, I hate these long pauses you know…there is so much going on here and I am holding the phone all the time. Bai, tum kal aaogi na (Ma talking simultaneously to the maid servant)

Me: So remembers that person at my office (let’s call him Obi-Wan Kenobi). Why this name is another story for some other time. Obi-Wan told me about blah and blah and didn’t want me to tell anyone.

Ma: What is this? Why did you tell me? Now what do I do with this? You know when it's told not to tell you should not tell. Now how weird will I feel when talking to Geeta masi, Sita masi, Bai and those women who meet me everyday when taking evening walks.

Me: WHAT? Why should they care? And how does this relate in any way to them Ma?

Ma: Well, how did it relate to me?

Me: Ma, you are my mom and I can share stuff with you about a person you remotely know. Doesn’t mean you should go tell half the world about it.

Ma: Half the world, you call this half the world. I am not even telling Sangita masi (our neighbor), Bai II (our other less favorite bai), some mrs x, mrs y, mrs z (women I don’t even know). And they too don’t know this person and don’t say this to anyone but I don’t think they would even visit USA. And don’t mention this to anyone because they certainly think they will.

Me: (What kind of weird information is that, why would I tell someone this) But still you don’t need to tell them. I should have never told you. I take my words back, you never heard about it.

Ma: I maybe old but I am not so old that you just tell me to forget something and I forget. This is a good lesson for you, now you will remember not to tell anyone.

Me: Ofcourse it’s a lesson, but I don’t need to learn it the hard way, do I? Ma, can you just forget this entire topic, pleaaaaaaaase.

Ma: I cannot just forget. Ok maybe just Sangita masi (who by the way would definitely tell half the world)

Me: O dear god. How do I convince you not to say a word to anyone? Where is dad, maybe I should just tell him this.

Ma: What do you mean tell dad, what has he to do with this. (Other phone rings) Hold on now, I need to clear this with you.

Background chatter- Ma talking to someone
Ah Sangita, tell tell. Yes yes, I know her. Your sister’s husband’s cousin right? Yes yes, tell. Oh, getting married, when? Such good news. Not a news? Why? Oh, they haven’t told anyone yet? I see, ofcourse ofcourse. No no, I won’t mention. But what a nice news, ahh sorry not news. Ok ok, talk to you some other time.

Ma: (totally exicited) Listen listen Sangita had just called so and so is getting married. How nice no?

Me: Didn’t Sangita tell you, its not NEWS and don’t share?

Ma: Ofcourse she did, but I bet she is already calling half the world and who are you going to tell, you don’t even know these people.

Me: And about what I said earlier?

Ma: You? What did you say? Yeah, you did tell me some lame story, but it was totally boring. I don’t even remember it now. And I have ten thousand things to do. Call me tomorrow ok?

Me: Ok (yay!)

And just like that she forgot and kept my secret a secret. How nice it is, when you can share something with someone who you know would absolutely forget it after listening hehehe.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Elevator ride

Every day I get into the elevator at work at the lowest level, garage if you may. There is hardly one other person or no one who takes the elevator from there. I get off at level 3. So basically its not a very long ride, just parking 1, parking 2, ground, 1st and 2nd. Yet everyday when I get into the elevator, I hope it doesn’t stop anywhere before the 3rd floor. Why is that you ask? Well, its just uncomfortable,

Bunch of strangers, who are not really strangers since they work at the same company as you and you often see them once in like 6 months maybe. They get into the elevator.

Every stop the elevator makes, it challenges the weight bearing and space capacity of the elevator. Even if there is no more space, there is at least one person trying to squeeze in.

There is at least one person riding the elevator who is bathed in coffee. Don’t get me wrong, I do like coffee but not so much as to sit in a bath tub filled with coffee so I smell of it all day long.

Everyone waits in awkward silence. Not knowing or understanding what to do. Some stare at the roof, some at their shoes, some just keep moving 2 paces here and there, some keep pulling up their handbags or backpacks, some keenly stare at their car keys and some pretend to love the music they are listening to.

You have to be nice to people, they work in the same building as you do and though you may never run into them again, you never know right?. It could be another awkward ride to the 18th floor or something some other day.

Then there are those who ought to bring food or soda or vitamin water or tea or coffee or eat noodles (no kidding) while in the elevator. Don’t ask why, its as if this whole 2 min or less elevator ride is just too much time to waste, so I better eat. Or I maybe taking this elevator ride to the draught stricken 23rd floor, I ought to carry food.

And then there are those chatty ones. Those nice, smiling, i-am-so-happy-too-bad-your-life-sucks kinda people, who need to talk to you. Like:

Stranger1 (very chirpy): Hiiii, morning, how are you doing today? (this dude obviously has his adrenaline soaring up, what is he so happy about?)

Stranger2: Hi (lazily,obviously I am not interested in what nonsense you have to say. Rude but dude please its 9 am and I just woke up)

Me: Ahem, yeah huh hi

Stranger1: The weather today is quite nice, isn’t it?

Stranger2: Hmm (Like I care, dude take a hint)

Me: Yeah, its good (when will this damm elevator stop, I need to get out NOW)

Stranger1: Tully’s downstairs, good coffee. Did you try?

Stranger2: I don’t drink coffee

Me: I guess (thinking, obviously you would know, you had 20 cups probably) and smiling (Coz my floor arrived)

There are those who wear weird tight cycling shots, cycling helmet and enter the elevator all sweating. I mean I respect the fact that mr cycling dude cares about the environment and his own health. But those tight shorts, really? And why do they come in such fancy bright colors.

And then those who enter the elevator as a group (do they actually wait for their buddies before entering the elevator), coz they just start talking, loudly and laughing. This make me curl in a ball and roll out of the elevator.

Well there are so many more types I come across everyday and think how uncomfortable the elevator ride is really. I pretend daily to be no one , don’t exist, don’t look at me, I am not here kind of person when entering and leaving the elevator. Do you feel the same or its some weird chronic condition I have?