There are so many self-help books that tell you to make a list of all the things that you want to do in life, ‘goals’ as the terminology goes. These books even make a distinction between long-term and short-term goals detailing ways in which you can turn them into reality.
Most of us fall into three categories: the ones who have no such dreams or the ones who have long lists of wishes that are too unrealistic or the ones who have lost this habit of having wishes, a classic case of dreams deferred. But many, I would say many are quite contented with what they have.
Earlier, from an overdose of reading positive thinking books, I had this habit of writing down my wishes, so many of them that even ran in contradictory directions, like travelling and staying just here in my good old Thiruvananthapuram. However, the experience of adulthood taught me to live in a world where I had to be grateful at the surprises that life throws in my direction.
This year, though I did not take any New Year Resolution, from the first week, my decisions have been quite contrary to my usual nature. I decided to go on a study tour with the students from the college where I teach and it was a risk provided the fact that it involved a week of moving around with my twenty odd companions.
I think I camouflaged myself pretty well in the crowd, so much that in Wayanad, our tour guide was so surprised that I was the lady teacher in the group. In the middle of the forest after his strange discovery, he went on endlessly about Thomas Hardy’s Under the Greenwood Tree, probably with his failed English papers in mind. After listening patiently, I finally admitted that I've never read the book, which shocked him considerably.
The most amazing thing that I experienced was the perfect silence inside the Buddhist temple at Coorg; it was always in my wishlist to visit a Buddhist temple. The blessings from the journey is the joie de vivre that I felt after a very long time, may be caught from my young companions who practically had to hold me by the hand at times especially when we went for canoeing in Coorg or for the watershow in Mysore (where Falguni Pathak’s ‘Meine Payal jo Jhankayi” was playing when it began).
This shot of wanderlust has given a surge of positive energy, a stretch of some mental boundaries, and a feeling that anything is possible. On a different note, I feel that I have some clue as to why exactly Chaucer must have composed his tales about his Canterbury pilgrimage!
Photo: Kamal Varghese
Photo: Kamal Varghese