Thursday, November 11, 2010

Journal Entry: Getting Back to Reading

I am now struggling to write. I do intend to post everyday, but ideas are now quite difficult to come by. I am left guessing the reason: I am extremely busy and engrossed at what I am doing; the winter is suddenly severe and given me an unseasonal flu; and the commitments of study has eaten away the little time I had left. But, I would argue, none of this will keep me from doing what I love doing: My fear is that I am slipping into a waiting mode of some description.

The state of my life at this time can be called - WAITING. I have committed myself to Education, and made significant progress in the last six months. My lack of confidence, arising out of my failures in the last couple of years, is quite safely behind me. I have discovered a new set of skills: The ability to engage a class and teach them something is giving me enormous pleasure; the ability to drive concrete change is another, and despite its slowness, progress always makes all efforts worthwhile. But, all of this seems to be another wait, for a life-changing moment, a moment of freedom and achievement. I am no lottery-ticket buyer and have convinced myself that work, not luck, will get me there. But, then, I believed I shall get there, no matter what happens.

If there is another sublime theme in this phase, Giving Up. This is not about giving up trying, but putting the past firmly behind. Now that I have stayed home for a period and had time to reflect what I have been doing, I have noted the mistakes I made. I realized that travel got me; I have been too desperate perhaps during 2008/2009 to focus and do things in an organized manner. I am still living with some legacies of the time: Some projects started but unfinished, some wrong partnerships, some commitments which I could not fulfill. No regrets, there are a number of positive things that happened to me during the period: I got to know a number of people and built some relationships which will possibly last. But it is important for me not to be stuck in legacies and move on: This is what I am doing now.

One silver lining amidst all this: I am getting back my reading habits. I love books and live surrounded by them, but there are times, when I am distracted, when I can't read with satisfaction. These are times when I move from one subject to another, leaving books unfinished after a few pages, not getting pleasure in continuing to read. I noticed that many a times, this happens because of me and my state of affairs, rather than the quality of the book itself (as an experienced reader, I hardly ever go beyond the Page 2 of a truly boring book). But at times like this, I feel attracted back to my solo luxury, the ability to read, and reading books do help me an escape from the trivialities of my day to day life; in fact, an escape into possibilities.

I am sure my changing mood will be reflected in this space, so I write. May be my posts will now drift into reflections and comments on the books I am reading, rather than my journal or ideas. I said this earlier: I let it flow. This isn't the space for essay writing, and I don't even try. All I try to be on this blog is myself, and a keep a narrative log of my years of living in Britain. I know a few people read this blog, and even if I don't know them, I consider them to be my friends: This blog is intended to be a conversation and nothing more. I am sure a little advance notice where the conversation may go next is surely in order, and hence, this post.

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"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the grey twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."

- Theodore Roosevelt

Last Words

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.

- T S Eliot

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