Love you, love you not


Strange as this may sound, I wish to describe my relationship with the Sun. Yes, “sun”. Not “son.”
When in India (mostly South-West), I detested how deep beneath my skin the sun made it it’s business to settle. My throat parched, face scorched and hair fried off my scalp; I cried bloody murder to that Sun of the Universe! The scoundrel that threatened to burn me crisp! We in South-West India boast of basically two seasons- Monsoons and no Monsoons. And it’s summer all the while. That sadistic Sun just loves to watch us sweat out of our minds!

Last November, I gleefully fled the raging beast to wintery Hamburg, Germany. I hid from the Sun but it did not seek. For days, weeks, months. The only attempts of the Sun trying rouse it’s lethargic self were pathetic peeks through grumpy grey clouds swirling in the howling wind.

I was distraught. Could it possibly be, I was missing that which I no longer had?
(If you’re smirking or rolling your eyes, I don’t blame you. Story of our lives, right?) How I craved the warmth of gleaming rays- to darken my skin and lighten my heart!

Winter finally kicked the bucket in April. Spring decided to do what it does best- be undecided. Rain, Sun, Snow and Hale within minutes each other was no surprise. Their irregularity ticked (me off) like clockwork. Well, at least the Sun was back at play.

I waited with bated breath for the Sun to break through the sky and when it did, I cheered and danced for joy! The people of Hamburg spilled onto the streets and parks to bask in the Sun. We conveniently forgot how we bad-mouthed the weather through gritted teeth chattering between wind jackets and numb noses. The Sun was no longer the enemy. I made my peace and celebrated our kinship. I was in love once more!

Spring is saying goodbye now and Summer is rushing in boisterously. The Sun is back to being a (part-time) bully and I feel the obscenities rising in my gut.

Am I that fickle, oscillating between love and hate for this entity I cannot control?
Then it hit me, like a slap in the face.
It was never about the Sun.
It was and is always about me.
Up to me to find Nirvana in any consuming furnace.
Up to me to find my inner sunshine through the darkest winters.

Isn’t that what life is really about? Letting your spark shine no matter the obstacles?
Funny how the Sun of the Universe let me blaze through love and hate over two continents and then run smack into the solution.
In fact, the mother of all solutions: the face in the mirror.


Bloopers across Cultures

Ah the joys of communicating across languages and cultures!
My laid-back sossegado Goan self, feeling like some gentle action on a lazy Sunday afternoon, wakes up the snoozing German hubby with: “Hey honey what do you think of a walk?”
I didn’t think it necessary to specify the time-distance frame I had in mind, which was approximately 20 minutes, 2 kms.
Hubby: “Oh yes, sounds like a good idea. Let’s walk near the lake. ”
His time-distance frame was also not communicated.
Blissfully unaware of the gigantic rifts in our respective perceptions of a “walk”, we set out. I’m not sure if it’s a German-Indian mismatch or just a Kay-Nicola blooper.
I decided to do it his way (instead of the right way! 😉 ), and we ended up walking 12 kms in 90 minutes.
Indeed, a walk to remember. Ouch!

PS- I would love to hear from you what your idea of a walk is. And also to which country/culture you identify yourself with so that I can sharpen my skills on cultural differences and celebrate them with another blog post featuring your response.


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