Day 2: A Journey to Nowhere……….

Have you ever wondered why is it that our memories are sepia toned? I don’t know about others but whenever i look back to the foundation years of my life, everything seems to be in the form of faded black and white. Like old photographs, torn at the edges, crumpled by time and associated with a lot of fond memories.

I have been an avid reader since i can remember. Reading soothes me, calms me and helps me relax. It helps me be a better version of myself also. At least i think it does. I am sure i share this sentiment with millions like me who think books are the greatest inventions of mankind. It is from this reading habit of mine, that i have found a place to run away to…

Ever since i can remember, i have wanted to visit England. Not the new swanky Britain, but the old world Victorian England. An era so politically and culturally rich, that its impact can still be seen on the society. I would like to be a contemporary of Jane Austen, Bronte sisters, Lord Byron, William Wordsworth, Charles Dickens and many other notable poets and writers. The intellectual stimulation itself is a temptation. Like all my other old and fond memories, this wishful thinking of mine is also sepia toned, warm hued and very realistic.

The social structure at that point of time is also a point of interest. Defined gender roles and expected social behaviour have always intrigued me. I have never been able to comprehend the need of compartmentalising our potential and our aspirations on the basis of our sex. Even today, as a female, i find myself fighting so many types of set mentalities, but still being a lady in the 21st century, life is much easier.  I sometimes feel very blessed, that i do not need to fight for my existence, my rights and if i do, there is an amount of social acceptance towards that cause. I would like to go back to that space and want o understand, how women did it. How they gently but persistently fought for equality and acceptance and how the society graciously, or maybe not so graciously, paved its way for equal rights.

What also attracts me to this era and this particular country is the description of its natural beauty in all the literature that i have read about it. The beautiful mountains, the deep blue sea and the gardens and fields where one could take endless walks. BBC has romanticised old world England with such beautiful locales and mansions. Nature has its own attractions, and now since such natural beauty and bounties are difficult to see, it is all the more alluring.

I guess nostalgia makes things look better than they already are. Maybe from afar all of this looks romantic, but the hardships and social realities are quite different. The truth is that we have become used to so many facilities and amenities in the modern world that waiting for things to happen. But it would be an experience to go back in those days when life was simpler.

Man, woman and violence

With the increasing number of sexual crimes being committed in the country, I am both alarmed and disturbed. What has changed that has marked such an increasing rate of violence against women. Violence seems to be the only answer our men have, whether it is the comfort of their own homes or workplace. What I believe is that men in general think that sexual subjugation will give them a semblance of control that they are fast losing in the ever-changing “equal” world that they live in.

Most of the people that we work along with are not sexual predators, they are not even close to being violent people, but why has this streak of violence surfaced in the recent times. I believe as the female population all over the world is busting myths, taking over the so-called male bastions, it is making the other half of our population insecure. places which they considered sanctimonious, jokes which they considered were their birthright are now being questioned. What they fail to understand is how this “physically frail” and the  “intellectually incompetent group” has been able to take a place in society that is rightfully theirs. This anger has to manifest itself somewhere, whether it is at home or outside. Men are born with the perception that they are superior beings and if  a woman is doing something, it is because they allow her to be the person she aspires to be.

It is disturbing to see that the so-called sophisticated and educated population of our cities also follow this kind of the thought process. The behaviour pattern changes with the kind of company they keep. A lot of men keep their sentiments to themselves and others protest vehemently complaining and getting agitated if a woman around them is gaining some control over her life.

Is it so difficult for people to accept that women in general can have aspirations that go beyond the boundaries created by men in their lives and that they as human beings have a right to be free to think and live as they choose?