Monday, August 11, 2008

auto woes

Well yeah last three years were great with my poor civic never giving me a problem unless I gave it one. And then I experienced the best cars - the beamers, the lexus, the porche, the merc, the lotus - and on best roads where you were slow if you drove 60 miles per hour. Talking about drives how could I forget the pleasure of long drives that I used to experience with paramesh or samarth while doing the I-90 loop. Ah the array of lights on the tunnel of the bridge with latest bollywood hit playing in the car. And then the tunnel opened to the panaromic view of seattle downtown with space needle standing tall and we would claim- what is so world famously impressive about it.
But a week of riding on mumbai autos and on mumbai roads(??) with intense rain and strong winds making sure that those rains reach you regardless of you using the plastic curtains at their side have made me completely forget the pleasure of riding on any four wheeler.

So today when coming back my auto was coughing more than the old autowallah himself- with him being hearing impaired to not listen to either the auto or to me. And the auto stopped 5 times - everytime him blaming the adulterated petrol and refusing to let me down in the hope that the auto will move forward. Finally I had to shout as loud as I would have shouted bachao bachao (as if the auto were on fire) to make him stop ( I might have just gotten down and ran away as the auto was that slow but the old man was too old to be swindled). And then i got down finally took a cab and when as soon as my butt landed on the taxi seat I realized the luxury I have been depriving myself. Wow.
I used to think that my maid's healthy cooking or the hectic college is leading to some weight loss, only to realize now that the best exercise for my butt had been - yes - ride on a mumbai auto.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Do I experience long distance relationship everyday?

So this Sunday I was supposed to goto college for a meeting. Well so I bid Saurabh a weepy farewell and sat on my auto (it is another thing that mid-way I checked my mobile only to find a sms that the meeting was cancelled :( - well someone tell them that we really didnot check smses in US that often). Nonetheless, in the auto I was wondering that I and saurabh have had a long distance relationship for around 5 years and why suddenly being away for 7 hours on a sunday is causing so much emotional churn. Was I guilty of leaving him alone at home? But not really coz he was besides himself with joy as he was getting to play xbox (and I have started imposing curfew on xbox). But when I thought about it, I really was missing not being able to spend the sunday with him. Suddenly the pain of 1 day's separation seemed more than pain of 5 years. If I ask myself, do i love him more than I loved him a year ago, the answer is yes (and hope that it will be perenially yes). But then when I ask myself if I loved him any lesser a year ago, the answer ironically comes out to be no.

The leaf

The leaf atop the tree,
The tallest tree.
The highest leaf.
One day,
the wind blows,
And the leaf,
Finds wings.


Thursday, August 07, 2008

xbox to xbox - daily diary

Well that was my day today in totality but then a lot of things happened in between!
Well first of all the morning began with saurabh trying to play xbox (him not feeling well today decided to take first half off). :(.
And well then I rushed to college to edit my first project(I called Rohit at 8:15 to know what time the editing starts and he said 9 - thought it was a little tight I and my autowallah embarked into the mission of making me reach college by 9 - I entered the premises at 8:54 to start the editing). And well I didnt realize that that is all i would be doing till 5:30 pm! Ironically I started with the idea of making fun of the folks with complicated thinking and I got carried away so much so that lots of people are now not understanding my project. Well now I know how Vincent Van Gogh felt. Ofcourse the editing session was closely followed by a film appreciation - and how tough was it to do that mental context switch - but the movie we saw - 12 angry man was amazing.
Well I rushed back to the editing lab - saw a few videos of other folks then rushed back home - 45 minutes ride on auto that I pool with Rohit (hopefully car comes by the weekend) and the autowallah and me realizing that we do not have change - so I rushed to nearest pan thela to take the change - buy some eggs as a return of favor.
I rushed home to hear that saurabh was not that well after all :( and also that he stayed at home (after visitng the doc at leelavathi who adviced him rest :((). This is however interesting coz when he stays at home he consumes twice the amount of food so all my provisioning of food for the day (that I negotiate with my maid) goes kaput so I realized that there is only rice left at home for dinner (P.S - Saurabh doesn't like rice). So well I put the eggs to use and make some scrambled eggs desi style (bhurji) and we ate that with some roti and rice (P.S - I love rice). Then came a session of phone calls and some TV. After fighting against CNBC-IBN, I got to see MTV only to realize that now when I see a video - I tear it apart mentally - I notice the background music, cinematography, shot breakdown and scene transitions. Suddenly Singh is King is not amusing and the trailer of Phoonk is not scary :(. Ah the film appreciation class has managed to corrupt me. By then Saurabh manages to change channel to some madonna's song and we try our hand at some dance and I realize that after hours of not being together - one moment is still worth being together (in this holy matrimony that is)(P.S- this is my take - I dunno his take) and then ofcourse since we are not really newly married anymore - i get busy on my laptop and Saurabh sits next to me playing his Xbox and has his mouth open.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

script woes

Conversation with Asim over chat:

Arati: I need to shoot tomorrow and I need to just go thru my script once..mebbe i should improvise on it and change it a little bit.
Asim:No focus on other thngs now. How will u shoot, how will camera move, cinematography etc forget script now ... if u have to work in bollywood u have to forget about scripts anyways

Monday, August 04, 2008

Bandra diary

So this Sunday, I and Saurabh decided to go for a jog before our dinner. Well after much deliberation we thought of keeping it to just a long walk as we realized that jog will not be feasible in the crowded bandstand. So at one end of bandstand there is Galaxy apartments. For non-Bandraites, it is where Salman Khan (he is a bollywood star) resides with all kith and kin. So apparently he comes out every Sunday eve around 7 pm to give his "darshan" and wave at all his admirers. And believe it or not, that area of bandstand was jam packed with people gaping at his apartment where the lights were on. Infact it was almost impossible to pass through that area. Well what we did - we just ignored him and continued on our way..
A little away, reasonably away from the crowd, there was a school/junior college aged boy lying on the corner of the road. I really don't think he was sleeping but I felt he had fainted. As even Saurabh commented, the city can be disturbing at times. There was not even a single person who had stopped to look at him or wonder what has happened to him. People were just walking past him. Well what we did - we just ignored him and continued on our way ...

Saturday, August 02, 2008

sky looks bigger

That's what I feel after the first week. Wait was it just a week? We had classes from 10 am/9:30 am till 8:30 at night. Back to back. Yes 1 hour break in the lunch and in one week itself I feel that I have taken flight... to understand the complexity - the art and science of film making, how a story is told - visually. I have seen the movies that I have loved more than I could possibly imagine, developed a new taste for short movies, I know more about literature, music and I wonder what took me so long to find my bearing? I have realized how tough it is to act - and understood this art in its real form. And how *tough* it is to make a movie and captivate those thousands of minds sitting in a dark room. And yet it is so wonderful to share your labor of love with them. That narcotic moment when your creation is ready for you to see in its tangible form - being able to touch your thoughts. Yes there is lots of struggle, possibilities of disappointment, uncertainities but how can we stop a person doped with workings of his own mind. One of the instructor says - the paradox every artist face is to find your own unique voice and still reach out to millions. How rightly said.
I am basically an artist - a story teller and now it all makes sense why I would day dream about someone's stories while driving my car or attending a meeting(oops). What I perceived as distractions of my mind were actually its cravings. And now the pieces of life fall in there place - as I feel all the water in the river flowing down one single path. The course is right, the force is more now. My faculty is all performers, folks who have found their voices. When was the last time I heard the music of Aashique, did I know that its music director would take my music class or teach abt importance of background music? Or saw Pukar and realized its cinematographer would teach me cinematography or saw Ghulam and knew his writer would teach me script writing. Or when I last saw Jodha akbar or Taare Zameen Pe did I know that I would interact with their makers - eye to eye? Did I know that person who teaches me film appreciation has possibly read all the books or seen all the movies I would ever read or see.
My favourite class emerge to be the one by a 65 year old philosopher who talks about Indian and American literature. The sheer rhythm in the class mesmerizes me. I feel as if I am in a trance.
When I see such literary genius - who talk about books I haven't read, intricate movies (Megha Dhaka Taara, Man without a Head Children of Heaven)that I hadn't even heard of, and experience the vibrancy of my colleagues - ah the innocent ambitions and ferocious energy - I just feel I have so much to learn, so much to do - so much sky to cover. Amen.