Wednesday, June 17, 2009


While taking a walk one evening, a couple of days ago, K and I were discussing when would be the most opportune time to die. It does sound a tad too premature, I concede, but then on some days, the weather’s so fantastic, you feel you’d like to live forever but know it isn’t possible and then, abruptly, you’re beset by the contemplation of mortality and human existence. Besides, we were both a trifle ‘senti’ that day, having shed tears (me, mostly) at several points while watching the film ‘Up’ that morning in the theatre and feeling like we needed to re-examine the nature and purpose of our respective trips through life.

Well, then. I brooded over the topic for a while and announced that my fears of old age were mainly related to loss of independence. In all senses. Not only in the crudest sense of the slowing down or disruption of one’s bodily functions but also that of feeling infinitely more vulnerable and irrelevant all the time. Of being too old to be in sync with trends any more, of leading too solipsistic a lifestyle to allow the current events and incidents taking place elsewhere in the world to matter or work me up into a reaction of any sort any more. An indifference towards knowledge in any form. A relentless wait for the inevitable. That seems like time to make a graceful departure.

K’s attitude was distinctly different. In fact, his thoughts were not half as complex as mine. He put it very simply : he wanted to live as long as his partner did. He wanted to be able to bask in the comfort of the thought that he was there to care for me and me to care for him. Otherwise, life would seem rather hard.

That set me into rewind mode. ‘Up’ (2009) had reinstated our faith in our relationship, somewhat indirectly. A very ordinary child who grows into a very ordinary adult and then a very ordinary old man, receives a fresh lease of life when his wife’s ‘Adventure Book’ (a scrapbook) reveals to him how their fun-filled personal life had been adventure enough for her. From the realm of death, she succeeds in convincing him that their humdrum life together had been as good as a historical romance, where love had helped to enhance each experience and endow it with meaning. They had had no children, but towards the end, Fredricksen realizes that any child may be your own child, it’s your approach to life that makes someone family. The realization is reinforced in a brilliant sequence, where Fredricksen begins throwing out all the furniture Ellie and he had carefully created, collected and cherished over their years of marriage to decrease the weight of the house and set off to rescue Russell. Ellie’s last autograph, persuading him to embark on a fresh adventure, convinces him that it’s the emotions that make a home and not the furniture it contains. The grumpy, grizzly Fredericksen finally emerges as a hero in someone’s life : in Russell’s life.

The lesson’s simple : life is as exciting as you make it out to be. Every moment is an adventure, ticking away all the time, while one is foolishly pining away for more thrill, envious of the lot of others.

Who can tell what’s in store for us tomorrow ? Right now, we are together. That’s what matters, right ?

Carpe diem !


little boxes said...

ki shundor story go...hope it release soon here :)
and whatever you do,make sure you keep writing this wonderful blog till your last day

A Bookworm said...

Gargi,this is a very beautiful piece of writing.I believe in life and all that comes with it.Sometimes it is so much more than difficult to try and be positive when all that is offered to you is despair , disappointment and failure. But when I look back and see the long road traveled, I am so glad about all the things life has put forth.

Kaustav said...

I completely agree to what my better half conveys in this post. Sometimes we get so busy with life that these simple realisations and thoughts gets lost somewhere. You can live someone else's dream, someone who is very close to your heart.


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