Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Gift of Maggi

************- continued-from-here-****************

As he gulped down another whiskey down his parched throat, he felt his trembling fingers forming a fist.. A feeble new determination had conceived within him. He felt an inner voice whispering.. "The time has come".. Placing a few dollar bills on the counter he dashed out onto the street.. The city life was not familiar to him... nor was it found appealing.. But now in this city was something very precious.. like a diamond misplaced in a coal mine.. Something he would die for..

His cellphone beeped.. One glance at it n the color drained from his face.. "DAD" why was that word so terrorising to him?? why was his dad like a Hitler?? To his wife, he was a marvellous husband.. socially active, well known in the city, and a rich business owner.But he had raised a son just like he raised the many cows on his farm. Fed them n sheltered them but he never learnt the language to communicate with them..
arrrggggggggggg... He felt all the pent up feelings in him rushing out.. Ignoring the call he set out.. this was the mission of his life.. Never had he the guts to stand up for something which he genuinely desired in life.. Whether it was when his dad forcibly sent him to residential school or when he had to be the model for his dad's milk chocolates..He felt humiliated whenever he saw his face stamped on a poster or billboard.. and loathed his father...But he was never a rebel.N now he wondered why he had always succumbed so meekly.. But now he could stand no more..Come what may, he would find her..
Thriving on the boost of the many drinks, he walked on towards her house..He could see her now.. Sitting by the window.A picture of innocence, marked with distinct sorrow in her big brown eyes.. he felt hazy..was he dreaming? Suddenly he stumbled on a stone and fell to the ground..

Wat if she didn't have a family? wat if she was alone in the world?? Y was she scared and insecure, running from place to place hiding her past, afraid of making friends?.. She tried to figure out.. May be it was her adolescence.. She seemed all confused, scared and paranoid.. But now when she analysed things weren't so bad.. But who was that guy.. She had seen him following her twice or thrice and it made her feel weird..she wanted to face the reality in her life but she was afraid, of trusting, of loving anyone again..For, anyone whom she had loved had simply ignored her.. As if her love wasn't worth having.. She had never met genuine people with genuine feelings.. For everyone seemed to change when addressing the daughter of Susie Carlbrown.. N then suddenly it all ended.. From the top if the world she fell deep into a gorge.. A black dark pit where again nobody seemed to want to recognise her.. Or were mocking at her and laughing at her miserable life..Life had taught her many a lessons at a young age..

N promising to herself never to get hurt again, she choose anonymity..She had changed her name and taken up a complete new life.. A life alone, with no gossips, praises, ridicule or rumors and no fake feelings..N now as a simple common girl, she was learning to laugh,to cook,to shop to enjoy the small things in the world.. But always deep inside was a fear, a fear of the past, of being hurt again, of being unwanted, of being an orphan.
Outside, the night was adorned with a beautiful star lit black sky and the earth covered with a carpet of white snow.. It was a serene picture and Marja sat gazing out.But suddenly her eyes caught sum thing moving behind the bushes. Her pupils widened as she saw who it was..


He tried to get up but couldn't.. Now he again saw her.. She was out by his side, helping him on his feet.. "who are you??why have you been following me?" She asked.. He wanted to reply.. Because this was the moment he was waiting for.. But he found himself tongue tied, as if someone had kept a rock on his tongue. But he knew he couldn't afford to fail now.. This was his one chance..

"Marina.." he managed to talk.. she was dumbstruck.. A thousand emotions danced on her gentle face.. ""how?? ..who??.." she seemed to have a lot of questions..
He pulled out his wallet.. N from that he produced a tiny little sheet of paper and handed over to her.. She watched in disbelief a picture of a family.. A little gal with a teddy,holding her daddy's hand and her mom carrying a baby.. All insecurities from her past seemed to melt away..She cried out loud in happiness and hugged him tight..

His cell phone beeped again."Step-mom.." He threw it into the bushes without a second thought and hugged her tighter..

*********************** thank-you-*************************

NB : - I would love it if all of you gave your sincere opinions about the plot, style and flow of this story.. Plz don't refrain from being critics, as i take this as a learning exercise and inputs from your side will be my most valuable learning tools :)

Monday, September 24, 2007



She walked slowly on the snow covered pavement, alone and feeling cold.. she loosened her curly thick hair to let them fall on her ears. It made her feel warm.. She could see smiling people all across the street..Buying gifts, decorating Christmas trees, kids chattering about Santa, there seemed to be the smell of joy in the air.. She felt good to be out.. She sighed and tried to set aside her worries. She had become quite accustomed to a loner's life now..

After all she had been running about from place to place like a gypsy. She never made many friends and had now seemed to get a knack to get along well with strangers. Any discotheque,club or dance floor was enough to make her feel at home. But sadly, on special events like Thanksgiving and Christmas, she missed her family.

She recalled the hilltop home she once lived in as a toddler. her mom was never the homely kind. She wanted to be on Broadway and always dreamt big. It was that deadly autumn night when her mom had her final clash with her dad and was all set to leave them.Marja was four then and sat up wailing in her bed. Her younger sibling was fast asleep in the crib beside her. She didn't know wat agreement her mom had reached with her dad,But she barged into their room, packed up some of little Marja's things and pulled her along.. Marja didn't even have time to pick up her favourite teddy.. In all the chaos she just wailed on and later she remembered her dad hadn't kissed her goodbye..Nor did mom kiss goodbye to her sibling.Why did mom choose her? May be coz it was better than taking a baby out into the street. She never knew, nor did her mom ever tell her.

She also often wondered if her dad had ever loved her. In all these 20 yrs, even when her mom had died 4 years back, she didn't hear a word from him.Till a few years back she used to wish some day her dad would come and find her..But now she didn't wish so anymore.. May be in his hatred for their mom, he had started hating her too..But why should she blame her dad alone. Her mom too was never that close to her. She was always busy.. First with her theatre and rehearsals and then with films and directors..And the so many fans she had and her lovers..Ah! how she hated her mom.. The famous, most desired actress in town.. Susie Carl brown..

But she also pitied her mom.. Ultimately wat did she get.. Narcotics, Alcohol and in the end a bullet in the head.. After her career bombed she succumbed to wat not. Marja always thought suicide was the worst way to put an end to ones life..And she hated to think of the past..
She wanted to put her entire life behind her and move on.

She opened her front door to be greeted by Miss Kiki. She put down the gift she had got for her pet, by the fireplace..Sadly there was no Christmas tree nor any gift for Marja.. She rocked in her easy chair and put on some music and began to relax.She was enjoying the silence and peace in her little apartment.

Outside, the night was adorned with a beautiful star lit black sky and the earth covered with a carpet of white snow.. It was a serene picture and Marja sat gazing out.But suddenly her eyes caught sum thing moving behind the bushes. Her pupils widened as she saw who it was..


Wednesday, September 19, 2007



He wore a full length coat and had his cap pulled way down his forehead. He parked his Mustang a little off the main door and trying to look as casual as anyone else walked into the store with both hands in his pocket. He was received at the door by a short middle aged woman. "Welcome to Walmart" , she said to him. But he did not look up lest he be recognised.He marched ahead and went straight into the garments section n hid himself between the lines of clothes.His heart was pounding.Adjusting his thin, fake mustache, he looked right and left. He was goin to see her..Should he go and talk to her? Will she recognise him? Many random thoughts kept swarming into his head. Then he spotted Jerry. He had befriended Jerry at the local bar next door, a few days back and was counting on him to help. Jerry seemed a good lad, cheerful and kind. He waved to him n started walking towards him.

"ssup man?" asked Jerry with gum in his mouth.

"well..i was just browsing around..",he tried not to look nervous.

"sure, lemme know if you gonna need some help man.. N wat u doing hiding between gals clothes?? wanna buy something for ur girlfriend uh??"smirked Jerry..

"well kinda.."In his mind was running the most important question.. should he trust Jerry with it?Is he a big mouthed moron who may spill the beans?? He was confused..But he did look okay..

He smiled feebly at Jerry.

"Y u looking so frail today chum?? wats the matter.." Jerry seemed inquisitive now.

he didnt know what to say.. He was sure time was running out n he needed to do something tonight itself.. His dad would kill him if he found out.. In that split second he decided.. he needed help. he couldn't do it alone. He wasn't that smart.. He was a geek alright but when it came to people management he was a big zero.Mustering courage he said,

"Jerry i need your help.. I'm looking for a girl by the name of Marina...She works here in this store."

"No buddy, i know all the girls here. there ain't no one by that name."
UH? how could that be? He had travelled 700 miles to just see her.. N already he had wasted 2 days.. wat would he do now.. He didn't even have a photograph of hers to show him.. he reluctantly added, "Ummm.. She looks a little like Susie Carlbrown"

"whaat.. u mean the actress Susie!! U must be kidding man.. I'm sure there's no one that pretty out here.. Else i wudn't miss that little gal.."

He thought it wouldn't be safe to give out any more information. But by then Jerry was all the more inquisitive. "waitaa minute man, u know where she lives or was her last name?"

"No" and in a jiffy he turned to go.. He had to sneak out of there as soon as possible. But Jerry put an arm on his shoulder n asked again "tell me man, i'll help you find her.."

Being timid and helpless, he heard himself blurting out to Jerry, "Its Marina.. Marina.. Ca.. Carlbrown.."

Monday, September 17, 2007


Something had come over Marja. she felt sick, about to throw up..

"Good God am i pregnant??"Or was it the vodka's she had had at the previous night's party which was causing her all the trouble?? She had no idea.. In her quest to forget herself and just enjoy life, she had been partying n clubbing almost every night.. She had lost her job 2 weeks back following a heated argument with her boss. when she tried to go back to her previous job at walmart, she had been turned down saying they weren't hiring.. But she knew what the real reason was. he seemed to be following her like a shadow.. She felt now everyone looked at her with spite.. He had turned the whole world against her.. God her head was throbbing..

She reached out for the bottle of aspirin by her bed when it tumbled over and spill open onto the floor.It made poor Miss. kiki wake up with a start and she meowed on softly..

"Thank God for Miss Kiki, else i would be all alone in this world.." thought Marja. She fondled Miss Kiki and for a minute forgot all her pains.

She looked at the time. 8:15 AM. The winter had hit with its full might and she didnt feel like salting the snow.. Gosh , why wake up,when there is no work to go to? so thinking she went back to sleep.. she dreamt of a beautiful English party where she was dressed in a lilac silk gown.. The ball room was full of exquisite people and she danced on and on with a handsome young man.. The waltz and Strauss made her sway and the young gentleman held her firm. She felt possessed and so much in love.. and the next instant he turned and in her dream she saw his face.. he was very handsome but yet so familiar.. She strained to think. It was as if her dream had paused.. She was in a state somewhere in between her dream and reality when u know you are dreaming and so badly want to interpret it.. And to see what happens next. But it was like a badly stuck cassette. It couldn't move on.. N she open her eyes.. Oh what a dream. N now she knew who he was.. It was Him.. oh now he had conquered her dreams too!!!

***** -to-be-continued-***

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

10 days..

Have been away for a whole 10 days.. hope you remember i mentioned about a visit to an aunt's place.. well that alone cannot mark the reason for my absence.. Suddenly life seems very busy.. I am surprised i dont have time to take my afternoon nap :D ha ha well i've taken up a new online course. well at least something to feel worthwhile.. N not only am i attending this twice a week, 5 hrs a day, we have group study on other days.. feels like im back to school...but again everything is virtual.. wat i mean is on the web.. even my classroom is in my laptop now, hooking me all the more to it..
After my RJ fiasco (i never heard any gud news from them) another new venture ive taken up is vocal music..There is a troupe which performs on stage for some occasions and me and my husband happened to be present on one of their practice sessions.. Stage fright is my next of kin and i could feel my knees wobbling when i was asked to sing.. My whole life i've been afraid of singing on stage.. For all other matters like debates, extempores and speeches, i've never had trouble. But though otherwise i sing well and have taken up official training in Carnatic music, when i step on the stage my voice gets all cracked up and u can feel the churns in my stomach being dispelled out in my voice and wat not.. But now as im growing up(he he) i feel before i reach the zenith and start my journey downhill this is one of the things i would like to successfully achieve. So singing practises are goin on and will let you know whether it all went on well or i ran out thru the back door ;)

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Death Speaks

Jeffrey Archer has been my favourite writer from the time i turned 15. Thats when i first read his short stories, thanks to a very dear aunt who has always been a role model to me. She always had the habit of buying us books and i truly loved her for that.. i believe books are the best gift and i too practise gifting them now :) Also im really happy that we are visiting her in a few days time. :)

She gifted me his ""Collected short stories" which contained all 36 short stories of his till that date.. The book had to be a favourite firstly because she had gifted it to me.. secondly it was remarkable, the twist and turns he brought in his short stories.. i was so spellbound. From there began the saga of reading Jeffery Archer and i still like reading him over and over again..
Here is one of his shortest stories for you i came across from my current read "To cut along story short" titled "Death Speaks"

"There was a merchant in Bagdad who sent his servant to market to buy provisions and in a little while the servant came back, white and trembling, and said, Master, just now when I was in the market-place I was jostled by a woman in the crowd and when I turned I saw it was death that jostled me. She looked at me and made a threatening gesture; now, lend me your horse, and I will ride away from this city and avoid my fate. I will go to Samarra and there death will not find me. The merchant lent him his horse, and the servant mounted it, and he dug his spurs in its flanks and as fast as the horse could gallop he went. Then the merchant went down to the market-place and he saw me standing in the crowd and he came to me and said, Why did you make a threatening gesture to my servant when you saw him this morning? That was not a threatening gesture, I said, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Bagdad for I had an appointment with him tonight in Samarra. "

The 'Crush'er..

At age 13 I was a lanky boy with slight traces of a moustach below my nose.I was shy and except during classes, I always wore my sports ca...