Tenth Anniversary

July marks the tenth anniversary of Speechless.

I was full of ideas and words when I began scribbling on blogger, but ten years later today, as i sit down to dedicate a post on completing 10 years together, I feel waves of overwhelming emotions sweeping over me. Words are the beginning, words ensure the detailing but when you rise way above the details and a hundred thousand event plays in your mind, even paintings get blurred and words fall short in doing justice to all that I am feeling right now.

Speechless was born from the workstation of my first job, while I was already 2 years working with an online greeting card company, the rest is a lot of told and untold stories.

September 2008, I wrote a post on some random questions that I answered. Interestingly the 10th question and its answer was:
"10) How would you see yourself in ten years time?
With the same eyes, still without any spects...okay..seriously.. Mother of two adorable kids and wife of a loving husband..."

Reality check:
Still dont wear glasses.
God has given me a very loving husband.
Yesterday, even before realising this anniversary and while returning from a weekend trip to Jhargram Rajbari, I told my husband, that" Ray", that's what we call our second car (the first being "Appu" , which we had during our 2 years' stay in Bangkok) looks like the son who has returned home after playing in the soil while it rained. So in a very nice little way, I am a mother to two adorable kids.

True happiness

1) Being around:
     Babies/ toddlers
     Very old people

2) Doing simple but good things to/ for people and random strangers:
     Smiling and greeting a passerby.
     Holding a door open for the person  behind you.
     Saying "Thank you" and "Sorry".
     Pitching in for an over burdened colleague or friend on your own.
     Bringing coffee or snacks for the colleague having a rough day.
     Talking nicely to a roadside beggar or a eunuch on the street. Remember they are not spoken well with (in many countries), which explains their natural distrust towards strangers.

3) Nurturing:
     An indoor plant.
     A hobby

Ps: I shall happily embrace just additions to the above list :)

Jatishwar lyrics - Suman Chattopadhyay

অমরত্বের প্রত্যাশা নেই নেই কোন দাবী দাওয়া
এই নশ্বর জীবনের মানে শুধু তোমাকে চাওয়া।

মুহূর্ত যায় জন্মের মতো অন্ধ জাতিস্মর
গত জন্মের ভুলে যাওয়া স্মৃতি বিস্মৃত অক্ষর
ছেঁড়া তাল পাতা পুঁথির পাতায় নিঃশ্বাস ফেলে হাওয়া
এই নশ্বর জীবনের মানে শুধু তোমাকেই চাওয়া।
কাল-কেউটের ফনায় নাচছে লখিন্দরের স্মৃতি
বেহুলা কখনো বিধবা হয় না এটা বাংলার রীতি
ভেসে যায় ভেলা এবেলা ওবেলা একই শবদেহ নিয়ে
আগেও মরেছি আবার মরবো প্রেমের দিব্যি দিয়ে।

জন্মেছি আমি আগেও অনেক মরেছি তোমারই কোলে
মুক্তি পাইনি শুধু তোমাকে আবার দেখবো বলে
বার বার ফিরে এসেছি আমরা এই পৃথিবীর টানে
কখনো গাঙর কখনো কোপাই কপোতাক্ষর গানে।
গাঙর হয়েছে কখনো কাবেরী কখনো বা মিসিসিপি
কখনো রাইন কখনো কঙ্গো নদীদের স্বরলিপি
স্বরলিপি আমি আগেও লিখিনি এখনও লিখিনা তাই
মুখে মুখে ফেরা মানুষের গানে শুধু তোমাকেই চাই।

তোমাকে চেয়েছি ছিলাম যখন অনেক জন্ম আগে
তথাগত তার নিঃসঙ্গতা দিলেন অস্তরাগে
তারই করুনায় ভিখারিনী তুমি হয়েছিলে একা একা
আমিও কাঙাল হলাম আরেক কাঙালের পেতে দেখা।

নতজানু হয়ে ছিলাম তখন এখনো যেমন আছি
মাধুকরী হও নয়নমোহিনী স্বপ্নের কাছাকাছি
ঠোঁটে ঠোঁট রেখে ব্যারিকেড কর প্রেমের পদ্যটাই
বিদ্রোহ আর চুমুর দিব্যি শুধু তোমাকেই চাই।
আমার স্বপ্নে বিভোর হয়েই জন্মেছ বহুবার
আমি ছিলাম তোমার কামনা বিদ্রোহ চিৎকার
দুঃখ পেয়েছ যতবার জেনো আমায় পেয়েছো তুমি
আমি তোমার পুরুষ আমি তোমার জন্মভূমি।

যতবার তুমি জননী হয়েছ ততবার আমি পিতা
কতো সন্তান জ্বালালো প্রেয়সী তোমার আমার চিতা
বার বার আসি আমরা দুজন বার বার ফিরে যাই
আবার আসবো আবার বলবো শুধু তোমাকেই চাই।

Rahu Mahadasha

I must tell you at the start that I'm not an astrologer, therefore cannot assist you with any technical questions.
I choose to write about this as i have myself gone through this difficult phase and would be happy to ease the pain of others who are now under the scanner of Rahu.

18 years is no joke, but always remember, no matter how difficult or painful it gets,  Rahu will only take you to the edge of the cliff, give you a push and when you are almost certain of the inevitable, he will immediately pull you back to safety.

What to expect:

1) Lack of light around, no matter how many sources of light you may have in the house.
2) Insects and pests increase in the house.
3) Frequently malfunctioning pipes, leakage.
4) Being dishonoured by lowly people or people from a very low lineage.
5) Theft or loss of valuables.
6) Break in education or career.
7) Unrest and lack of mental peace.
8) Family discord.
9) Travel and stay abroad.
10) Higher studies.

Your good relationship with your father or a father figure is extremely crucial for a smoother Rahu period.

What to completely avoid:

1) Crab meat.
2) Alcohol and cigarettes.
3) Disrespecting and hurting parents (because Guru Mahadasha that follows Rahu is all about how you have treated your parents. Parents are your greatest guru. How pious they are will also determine how your Guru Mahadasha will be).

What to do:

1) Plant trees.
2) Pray to Goddess Durga or Chandi regularly.
3) Meditate daily (it will be EXTREMELY difficult with the total absence of mental peace, but it is essential that you try).
4) Visit temples with peaceful surroundings where you can meditate.
5) Read "The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne. An extremely potent and powerful tool to see you through the mighty storms.
6) Practice positivity.
7) Don't expect people to make you happy, or don't wait for others to support you. Do that to yourself.
8) Spend most of your time around kids, pets or the elderly.
9) Refrain from discussing or thinking about traumatic incidents.
10) Take active part in solo artforms.
11) When nothing seems to work, fall asleep. It always helps.

Remind yourself everyday that the wonderful Guru Mahadasha is just round the corner. Hold on till then!

কিসে সমস্য৷?

আমার প্রথম চাকরিতে বছরখানেক হয়ে গেছে। আমাদের টিম লীড ইংরাজীতে খুব কাঁচা না হলেও অনিচ্ছা বসত কিছু কিছু ভূল বলত। যথা - ফ্য৷য়সল বলে আমাদের টীমে একটি মাত্র ছেলে ছিল, বাকি আমরা পাঁচজন মেয়ে। অরিজীত দা ফ্য৷য়সল কে খুঁজে না পেলেই বলত,
"ফ্য৷সল কোথায়, ওয়্য৷র ইজ্ শী?"
আমরা এটা প্র৷য় প্রত্যহ শুনে শুনে বোর হয়ে গেছিলাম। আগে কখনও বিরক্ত হয়ে আমাদের মধ্যে কেউ কেউ অরিজীত দা কে শুধরে দিতাম, পরের দিকে আর সেটাও করতাম না।

একদিন দুপুর নাগাদ আমাদের খুব কাজের চাপ চলছে, কারুর কীবোর্ড থেকে মাথা তোলার অবকাশ নেই, এমন সময় ফ্য৷য়সল অনুপস্থিত এবং অরিজীত দা'র সেই এক উক্তি।
আমি কাজ করতে করতে, অন্যমনষ্ক ভাবে অরিজীত দ৷'র উদ্দে‌শ্যে একটা কথা বললাম। পরক্ষণেই একটা ধপ্ আওয়াজ হয়াতে পাশে তাকিয়ে দেখি, দেবোনীলা চেয়ার থেকে মাটিতে পড়ে গেছে এবং পেট চেপে ধরে খিল্ খিল্ করে হাসছে। অরিজীত দা দেখলাম মুখ লাল, ঘাড় নীচু ও মাথা নাড়তে নাড়তে চেয়ার ছেড়ে উঠে বাইরে বেরিয়ে যাচ্ছে, আর বাকি সবাই ভীষণ কষ্টে হাসি চেপে আমার দিকে তাকিয়ে আছে।
অরিজীত দা'র ঘর থেকে বেরিয়ে যাওয়ার সাথে সাথেই আমরা কেউই আর হাসি ধরে রাখতে পারিনি।

আমি খুব বিরক্তি সহকারে, তবে অন্যমনষ্ক ভাবে সেদিন সবার সামনে বলে ফেলেছিলাম,
"উফ্ অরিজীত দা, তোমার না, "হিশী" তে সমস্য৷ আছে"।

Remember, to remember

Have you noticed the randomness around recently, in Calcutta?
I went to Hyderabad last to last year, it was even worse.
Pedestrians are omnipresent, they cross roads as if they are going from one big room in their house to the next, totally ignoring vehicles or traffic signals. People drive depending on their horns, such that if anyone comes in front, they will be honked (read petrified or stunned), well, even if no one comes in the way, they will still keep bellowing horns declaring their presence. Walkways are absent or occupied.

People are eager to fight and snap at one another. Couped up with the burden of multiple frustrations.

From a distance it looks like a huge pile of dry grass, waiting to receive a tiny spark of fire or should i say, a dry parched patch of land awaiting the monsoon clouds.
Hoping for destruction or redemption. Easier to destroy, where one small spark would suffice but more difficult to save, where several monsoons would fall short.

Ours is a time where light will not come from an external source. We will not have a righteous leader or teacher, who the mass can follow and get redeemed. Ours is a time where we have to find the tiny spark of fire or that first drop of rain inside us. We really have to look within ourselves. He has sent us great leaders, teachers, preachers and have time and again showed us how it's done. Destroying the hopelessness and despair and rejuvenating the love and well being.

All we have to do is remember!


An aged lady was walking on the road, bent due to her age and bent further due to the weight she was carrying - an iron bucket filled with water. She was bringing home, drinking water from the roadside tubewell about two hundred metres away.

A black Austin car silently parked. The chauffer got down, took the lady's load and carried it the distance for her. Upon returning, he saw her engaged in a happy conversation with the occupant seated next to her in the rear seat - the ten year old beautiful daughter of his mistress, upon whose request he just completed his latest task. Pratima, lived with her parents in a big mansion on the same street, four houses after the lady's. Theirs was the only big mansion on this street. Pratima's father owned several such mansions all over the state, hailing from a family of zamindars.

Pratima was the only child of Vibhutinath and Supriya Roy and was not only extremely beautiful but also tremendously caring and merciful for her age. On her birthday each year since she was five, her parents arranged for a free clinical camp within their grounds and opened their gates to one and all. She observed their house physician take charge of the event and strolled with her parents and sometimes alone, affectionately asking people sweet questions, which transformed into more meaningful and relevant ones with each passing year. Last month on her birthday this year, she even worked errands for Dr. Sanyal, following the footsteps of her equally caring and efficient parents at the camp. The Roys' were influential people and had several men and women working for them, however they did not believe in just ordering others around while relaxing themselves. Both Vibhutinath and Supriya were hands-on and active. Pratima was growing up well trained by both her parents - hard working, honest, kind and caring.

The more we press sand inside our hands the more it slips through. Some souls just visit us for spreading love and light and leave us behind before their time is done, the harshness of it all making us question the very existence of God. Pratima was adored and admired wherever she went. It was in September, 1958, when Pratima was diagnosed with Malaria, a life threatening disease which forever silenced her sweet pearls of laughter and stole the light from her merciful eyes. What it couldn't take away from her, however, was the love she was leaving behind, the seeds to which, she very carefully planted deep in the hearts of all those she met and touched with her affection. An invisible shroud of muteness covered not just the mansion but the entire area. The receding monsoons stopped to let the sun peek from behind the gloomyness of the clouds. Both man and nature hushed that day to give farewell to a beautiful eleven year old girl, a lovely sculpture, Pratima, decked up in wedding fineries - a bright red Benarasi saree, gold jewelry,  her hair tied in two thick, long plaits that rested on both her sides Over two hundred people accompanied her on her last journey to the crematorium that afternoon.

It rained incessantly that night for one final time that year. After returning home from the crematory services, Vibhutinath,  in a fit of madness thrashed and beat Supriya till he collapsed senseless on the floor. Supriya, bruised, battered and dazed like a lifeless statue, closed the door to their room and sat by her husband's bed, affectionately tending to him and to their loss just like Pratima would have done had she been there.


Vibhutinath and Supriya a couple of months later, gave away the mansion and relocated to the countryside, never to be heard of or seen again.


(Based on a true story.)


The stream was a beautiful shade of green and wherever the waters tripped on rocks, it bled white.
Polo drank from it to his heart's content and rested by its side. Around him were hills covered in a lush green carpet of grass. The soft touch of slumber snoozed his eyelids shut and drifted him to a peaceful nap.
A week ago, Polo had run away from his house with a bag containing some food, two sets of clothes and bare minimum money. He was always the quiet kind with a mind, full of questions. All of fourteen,  Polo thought about the source of life, of happiness and sorrow, the extremes - of people having food, money or a complete lack of it.
When he woke up, the daylight had already faded. Far away, on the other side of the stream was a mountain and the sky above it was subtly lit. Confused about the source of light he stayed still and kept gazing. Moments later, to his surprise at first, followed by delight, a beautiful off-white colored full moon peeked from behind the mountain. He witnessed a moon-rise for the first time and sipped with his heart and soul, the ethereal scene.

Weeks later, Polo's lamenting parents, who belonged to a hill tribe and of limited means, visited a monastery. They had received word from this religious abode; word about their only son. After waiting for several minutes in the open courtyard, within the monastery, they finally saw him. His mother kneeled on the ground before him, wrapping her arms around his knees; weeping. His father took his hand to his forehead and cried uncontrollably. They found Polo, only to lose him forever.

Polo stood before them; head shaven, wearing saffron robes and a calm smile. Tears trickling down his cheeks.
Tears of joy and of his divine calling - Monkhood.

The silence, that follows the cacophony.

Look into yourself, at some plane you are unhappy, complaining and vindictive.
Look at the person you are closest to, you will see the same.

We are all complaining and claim to have been wronged the most, none of us are ready to listen.. Those of us who do listen, unfortunately do not know how to guide the other into peaceful silence. There's a reason for that.

A poet, that creates resonance in his/her reader, they say, is formed out of a person who has faced unhappiness in life.

When we are in pain and are unable to do anything about it, we complain, to whoever is ready to listen or half-listen. When we are chatting with friends, we discuss other friends, mostly in a non-constructive manner. While watching K-Serials, we listen to the characters discontentedly grumbling, accusing and quarreling. We have, with time, programmed our lives with so much of this cacophony, that it seems alright and even self-consoling.

I recently visited Bali, Indonesia and noticed something very interesting. All places of worship, including statues and priests wore the same black and white checkered clotharound their waist. Upon asking they said, (there is a much deeper interpratation, but speaking loosely) good and bad traits reside in a mesh within every person.

We have to slowly train our minds to think positive. To forgive those that wronged us. To think of our misfortune as our own Karma and move on with acceptance. It's like exercise, the more we practice the sooner we experience the results of positivity in our lives.

The silence that follows a period of cacophony is of a heavenly nature. Once you've lived it first hand, please assist others who are going through similar dissonance in their lives. During the silence we realize that the bad was not entirely bad and that there was always a "method in the madness". 

There is no coincidence. Everything happens for a reason.

Trust in His plan and if you find yourself failing in life, ask Him for help. He will send you angels.


No matter what i think of blogging about has already been written a thousand times everywhere. The sense of purpose and of originality goes for a toss; unless of course I'm writing a story or a poem. None of which i seem to succeed in doing either.
So what do i blog?

Speechless: Remember to observe like you did before and remind yourself to be the best listener that you once were.