actuality.log


All entries tagged 'nostalgia'

Thursday, January the 17th, 2013

The web has changed a lot since the early days of this journal. And in many ways, I miss the way things used to be. I guess it’s that nostalgia that brings me here today.

A lot too has happened in my life since I stopped updating the journal regularly, but here are a couple of the highlights. First, I got engaged to Stacy,

Engagement ring

and I am to be married later in the year!

Second, I quit my job late last year to try and make it on my own. I was quite brave and sure of myself when I first quit, but after a couple of months of making little progress on my ideas, I’m starting to get a little antsy.

I guess that’s how it is with life. It’s trivially easy to keep things emphatically static. Change, on the other hand, takes serious effort and is as daunting as it is exciting.

Oddly enough, I have a feeling it’s all going to work out just fine.

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Friday, November the 12th, 2010

I did not take very many pictures in England when I was there earlier in the year because I wasn’t in the frame of mind to do so. What I did instead was to take a few portraits of people that mattered to me during my stay. Here are three such portraits; released now because I felt the journal could do with a splash of colour.

Woman in England

Woman in England

Woman in England

Wednesday, December the 16th, 2009

I kinda like it here at the university. After being away from one for over a year now, I realise how much I’ve missed the fascinatingly varied talks, the thought-provoking conversations, the dauntingly-large libraries, … the scholarly atmosphere in general.

Being here at Cambridge has given me a lot of time to ponder. Unfortunately, I’ve squandered much of this time obsessing over decisions regarding my future. You see, I have about 6–7 months ’til the completion of my contract in Scandinavia, and people keep asking me what I plan on doing next. The fact that I haven’t a clue sometimes makes me feel like a free spirit, but more often than not, the thought terrifies me. There are so many dimensions and angles to this quandary, it quickly overwhelms me every time I start to think about it. Perhaps things will be clearer when presented in the form of my possibility matrix.

Please please please jump in with any ideas that you have.

What↓ Where→ Continue in Scandinavia? Return to the U.S.? Return to India? Explore options elsewhere?
  1. And if so, what do I do? Continue with stuff I’ve been trained to do well, or try something else new entirely?
  2. Live frugally off savings and attempt nothing noteworthy.
Work hard1 Feasible Feasible Feasible Feasible
Rely on nepotism Nontrivial Feasible Feasible Don’t know anyone
Quit life entirely2 Can’t afford Won’t allow Feasible Won’t allow

My possibility matrix

As I’ve said before, I really like choice. I hate choosing.

Alongside the table, I’ve also started to catalogue forty-two specific options for the future. As a first for this journal, the page that lists these options is password protected. You need to e-mail me for access if you really want to see it. I’m sorry, but that’s just the way it has to be.

Wednesday, November the 25th, 2009

One of my very first memories is from kindergarten. To this day, I vividly remember the pattern on the gate I was railing against with my tiny palms as I wailed for my mommy to come back and get me. The place wasn’t very far from our home at the time—probably half a block away—but it felt really far away. Being cooped up in there had this really isolating feeling, like there was no escape. And even if you could get away, there was no point in trying.

My next memory from kindergarten is falling for my class-teacher at the time. For the life of me I can’t remember her name, but I can’t forget the sweet smile on her adorable face as I presented to her today’s little trinket. Each day, my tiny hands would painfully fashion for her a necklace or a pendant or some other trifle out of multi-coloured clay, hoping today would be the day I finally won her over.

But that’s a story for another day. For the purposes of today’s tale, I need you to imagine how isolating and unfun my kindergarten experience might have been.

It’s a common sight whenever I am out. Groups of teeny-tiny tots excitedly hobbling around and being prammed about town by their kindergarten teachers. Their cute little faces all smiling and wide-eyed; their brightly coloured clothes easily keeping them in view; their fluorescent name tags having printed on them big, bold contact info, should they still manage to wander off.

Sun or rain or snow, it doesn’t matter. Spend a couple of days in Oslo and this is a sight you’re guaranteed to run into. And it’s not just kiddies from school. The number of people pushing their (freakishly huge) prams around as they go about their days is just astounding. The Scandinavian trait of spending so much of their time outdoors is passed onto their kids when they are really young. And I think this is a very good thing.

Seeing the spring in the step of the tots leads me to believe it would’ve been pretty cool to go to kindergarten here. Spending all my time singing and playing and being carted around town sounds a hell of a lot more fun than wasting my days on those fucking pre-alphabet squiggles. I think I wouldn’t have felt so isolated, and actually realised how many fun and colourful things there were going on outside.

At least, I wouldn’t have been bored out of my mind.

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Saturday, February the 9th, 2008

Everything seemed so much simpler and clearer as a child. I saw the world in crisp black and white, through a pair of naïvely-curious eyes. Almost everything made perfect sense, and the little that didn’t was ripe for enquiry. I believed I could clearly distinguish between what’s right and what’s not; that I had a clear basis from which to form opinions and make decisions.

But somewhere along the line, I grew up.

A cloud descended on this view making things murky. Replacing the stark black-and-whites were vistas now filled with magnificent tones of grey. The view now a lot more intricate, possessing a degree of sophistication I can now barely begin to appreciate, much less clearly make sense of.

I yearn for that simpler past. I really wish I knew where I was going, or at least, where I want to.

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