Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Celebrated without Celebrations!

We had been to Goa this Christmas, a place known for it's Christmas celebrations. Essentially we were at the right place at the right time. Every year during this season, the roads of the capital, Panjim are flooded with lights and decorations and the whole atmosphere brings in the festive mood into anyone who visits the place.

This year was a not too different. The Christmas decorations were pretty nice. Moving around the city, we managed to capture a few decorations and it gives me a pleasure to share these with you. Beautifully crafted and soberly lighted, these were worth more than these pictures can share.

However one thing that struck me was the atmosphere. The festival looked more of an in-house affair. The streets weren't lighted, crackers weren't burst and still it was a very merry Christmas. Christmas, this year, was celebrated without the celebrations!

There was a statement behind it that said, "We have not forgotten Nov 26". Mumbai was hurt, India was hurt...and WE share the pain! We are not afraid of the anti-social elements, we dare to and we will celebrate. And in rememberance of those whom we lost, we will keep a low note.
On the same note, we, the Citizens of India will welcome the New Year in a grand style as we always do...making a clear statement, "We don't fear you!" But we will not let the celebrations extinguish the fire in us, the fire to change. Let's make a resolution this New Year to bring upon a change, a change in ourselves that says, "I can and I will!"

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year 2009!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

An Unplanned Weekend!

When at times, plan something and all of a sudden the plan falls crumbling messily, it does leave us hunting in nowhere with a sour taste. But what happens when the opposite of this whole episode takes place?? There is nothing planned till the last minute (make it till the last second), you don’t even know what’s going to happen in the next few minutes and at the end of it, its just a very well worked out plan that leaves you with a sweet taste, wishing for more. And that is what we experienced on a Saturday evening.

We were never a group before; we met on Saturday evening (it was rather night till then) and plans never were made, they just happened and we were enjoying and enjoying like may be we were “singles, ready to mingle”. Not to exaggerate, but if this is not the best that we have enjoyed, it was not anything less than the best either. The only thing that was common to all of us was probably that we were married in 2008. Other than that, probably it was the atmosphere that was created that made the “Saturday night” a wonderful dream.

Now for the cherry on the cream. What happens when you try and try to plan something and nothing gets planned?? So you just go out and hit something and that happens to be the best plan you could have had! After some sweet Saturday memories, we were left with more to wish for, so we met up on Sunday evening. We tried to workout plans but the decisions were just not happening. Then we took a call and went by instincts and Sunday evening turned out to be another sweet happening…and we are still wanting for more!

At such times, it is not the plan neither the place nor something that you do that matters, it is company that you have and the simplest attitude to enjoy at your best that matters. Now that we have both, we definitely are looking forward for more!

Monday, December 1, 2008

“WE are responsible!”

Though this statement may sound very controversial, I stand by it and say, “We are responsible”. Here “we” do not belong to any religion neither to any region; “we” are just the “stupid common man”. We crib at every security check and every nakabandi and when the attack happens, we crib about the security in the country.

Dear friends, please do not feel offended, but it is we who are responsible. We are being targeted and hence it is we who would have to retaliate. We say that the government we elected has done nothing. Then do we believe that the government that we elect again will do anything better? Let us revisit the latest attack. The terrorists attacked, they killed and got killed. In all the mayhem, we had politicians coming to take-out the political mileage out of the issue for the upcoming elections. In a situation where every security person’s value becomes immense, these politicians come around a consume some of the resources that are needed elsewhere. The promise huge compensations, which comes from the taxes we pay and not from their own pockets! Has there been any politician who has reduced his own security for this cause or has there been anyone who has said “I’ll train my men and ensure such attacks don’t happen?” Today, the Home Minister, Maharashtra CM and Deputy CM resign. They will be replaced by someone else. The attacks will still happen and there will be resignations again happening. This is like a musical chair where the terrorists play the music of death blindly and the politicians exchange seats. We demand resignations and get a new face on the chair…to be replaced after another set of attacks??

If we look into who is affected…is it the country’s economy? Or is it the “common man”? Yes, it is the common man who is majorly affected and he is being attacked as he runs the country, he elects the leaders and he is the economy of the country. And time and time again, it will be the common man who will be attacked. It is said that if the government was more proactive in calling the NSG, then the number of casualties would have been lesser. Well, the attack would still have happened! And it will keep happening as long as the “common man” does not answer.

So now the question arises is “what do we do?” We cannot be trained like militants in weapon handling and killing. So the most common of all questions “what can I do?” As a common man, we can take on self-defense tactics. We currently hesitate participating in mock drills and evacuation practices terming them as waste of time. We need to change this! We rush to the attacked site to pat the commandos...little do we realize that we are hampering their execution. We expect the news channels to provide the latest of information "live", not realizing that the same information would be used by someone with a different intention. All I can say here is we (and that includes me as well) need to change.

There can be another attack anytime…let’s be prepared! Let’s learn to save ourself and save our country. And terrorism will die its own death!