Monday, April 14, 2008

Sunday Scribblings - "Fearless"

For many reasons, I found this a difficult topic to write about. I really had to think about it. It was difficult not so much because of a mental or physical block or emotional trauma, but more because fearlessness has never featured in my personal life. Neither has fear, really, because I've mostly stayed away from situations which required either quality.

I’ve not been the adventurous or athletic type of person who climbs precipices using just their fingernails and possibly fancy boots just to prove a point to themselves or others. Nor have I been the sort of person who volunteers for relief work in the worst war-hit areas of the world. Never mind not being them, I haven’t even come close to knowing any such person on a personal level. (Unless a cousin in the Indian Navy counts.) So much for physical fearlessness.

Now for mental fearlessness. I’m not a stockbroker who fearlessly gambles with fabulous sums of other people’s money on a hunch that the shares will rise or whatever. I’m not a mother, so that rules out being fearless about bringing children into this world – and also being fearless about their future… what they might or might not become, good or bad. I’ve not even been the sort of fearless journalist who risks his life by going undercover in the criminal underbelly of society merely to get a scoop – no, all I turned out to be was the editor who rewrote the articles sent in by such fearless reporters, and put them in the newspaper.

Other than that, let’s see now – things that scare me: spiders, quicksand, being lost somewhere foreign where I cant speak the language, dentists, haggis, whirlpools, cold water, high heels, articulated lorries, leeches, lawyers (Freudian connection there, you think?), oatmeal (I take my cue from Calvin), maths, electric staplers… you name it. You can see why I was having trouble with this prompt.

I guess the closest I’ve come to being fearless was when I fell in love with a man who not only was not a Tamil Brahmin, but wasn’t even Indian to boot – and to add to that, he had been married before and had two children as well. Telling my mother and family about him, moving to the UK to be with him (leaving behind a lucrative – but hated - job in Singapore) was probably the one fearless thing I did…except that, really speaking, I was NOT fearless. I was nervous, anxious, had trouble sleeping and second-guessed myself all the time.


There was one thing that DID make me truly fearless about my future at that point. Only one. And that was the cold fear of what my life would be if I DIDN’T make that leap of faith to be with the man who is now my husband.


Robin Westphal said...

I especially love your last paragraph.... so true!

mumbaigirl said...

How nice! Hope Pete gives you a big hug after reading this!

chronicworrier said...

Loved the last two lines!

Btw, been prodding you to write about your work here, but you don't :-( They made u sign a bond didn't they ;-)

Shruthi said...

*Sniff* How lovely.. It is so uplifting when someone hints at how happy they are :)

Teesu said...

Way to go! Or should I say 'Way to have gone!'? Kinda takes the punch out;) Speaking of punch, I was as pleased as one when the whole Pete (Athimber)thing happened:)

Kamini said...

Bravo, Shyam!
Your refreshing honesty and candour are a form of fearlessness, I think.

Orange Fronkey said...

This truly made me smile. What cracked me up though is when i read the part about you being afraid of haggis.. AHAHAHA, ok ok, i'm afraid of it too :P

Granny Smith said...

I'll join the crowd and say that I, too, relate to that last paragraph!

Anonymous said...

Robin: Thank you. :)

MG: He did :)

CW: I may have written about it in a much earlier post... gotta look it up. Either that, or it was in my mind :D

Shruthi: Thanks :) I find photos of you guys pretty uplifting myself!

Teesu: Glad to hear it, cuz :)

Kamini: Thank you. I'm not really that brave, though :)

Merino: Doesnt the word "haggis" make you think of Baba Yaga and other evil witch type persons? :D

Granny Smith: I guess some truths are universal... nothing venture, nothing gain.

- Shyam

meerkat said...



ps. you should write more about your love ishtory with guest contributions from pete to give the other perspective ;=)

Anonymous said...

Meera: Oatmeal, yeah. Have you seen it when it congeals? Evil, I tell you! :D Also the thought of ragi mudda, although I've never eaten it in my life - but anything that I have to swallow in lumps is a no-no.

As for asking Pete, he'll just say he was absolutely sure we'd get married the moment I met him. He swears blind that he didnt have a single doubt or second thought. It's not much of a perspective, really. No anguish, no soul-searching or anything like that... just straightforward smuggery :D

- Shyam

Shruthi said...

Shyam, Ragi mudde doesn't have to be swallowed, it can well be chewed... now I know what to serve you when you visit me... and then let's see you say you don't like the idea of ragi mudde :D

Anonymous said...

Oatmeal- I am right there with you. I hate that stuff with a passion. Along with the 'O' any form of 'kanji' too. I simply cannot get that mushy, coagulated stuff down my throat.

BTW, what is/are haggis? Would look it up but that would involve moving my behind from this chair. Its 12.26 am here in Chennai and if I get off this chair, I'd have to go straight to bed. So pl oblige and tell me what it is.

Nice ending to the post.

Anonymous said...

Haggis - Scottish specialty made with offal (liver, lungs heart) of lambs, cooked in a sheep'sstomach. There. Is it or isnt it terrifying? :)

- Shyam

tumblewords said...

Nice post! Love the way it worked out for you!

homeinkabul said...

Really great post!

Anonymous said...

Shruthi: Ragi mudde doesnt have to be swallowed? Ok, I didnt know that - got all my info about it from food blogs and I got the definite impression that chewing it wasnt the best way to go as it would be too sticky. :) Pardon my ignorance!

Btw, that sounds like an invitation for lunch :) Accepted - whenever I'm in B'lore next! :D

Tumblewords, HomeinKabul: Thank you both!

- Shyam

kiwilax said...

Shyam: Yech, they eat all that???? Till I read this I hadn’t known what haggis was, although I’d come across the word in HP and made a fleeting mental note to look it up. Blech…but on second thoughts, why ever not? When they can swallow cockroaches willingly, why not all this……….yuuuuuckkkk, I really am going to barf….ERm - is tht Ken chap still alive?

Abhi said...

You may not know me, but you have no idea how inspiring those last few lines of this post have been to me these last few years. Thank you!