Curved Balls

Every year is new and different. But this one has been a landmark.

Have you ever woken up and felt like it was a good… no great day?
The sun is shining just the right amount. Your eyes open just a moment before your alarm was supposed to go off. You feel no ounces of laziness but just energy coursing through your body. You feel invincible on such days. Like you skin is flawless, you have a good hair day and that little smile refuses to leave your lips, come what may!

At the cost of sounding dramatic and eccentric at the same time, here’s what I want to share!

I woke up one morning in the rosiest of moods with the realisation that The Hazy Whisperer is soon turning TWO!
There had been no specific prompters. No peeking at the calendar (Yes, I’ve marked the date when it began). And no conversations about my course of action for it. But just a realisation…. guess the sub-conscious does have its own mysterious ways of playing with me.
What was next?!
Like an involuntary reaction to this thought, my mind just started rolling back and counting all the things that the last year comprises of. As if almost by instinct I was sure of one thing- I have a lot to be grateful for!

This year began with me meeting that one person I’m to spend the rest of my life with. Even since the journey has been of exploring, learning, understanding and pushing myself!
There were additions to Safarnama- a trip with the Girl Gang and a memoir to my time in Manali. A lot of stuff that I read was shared because it moved me some way or the other.
THW tried Collaborations. While being informative the idea behind it was to also empower, and we did that by Celebrating Women!
(PS do let me know if you’d like me to consider more of these through the comments below)

The year did see me slacking on the writing end. But I had my plate full. I was changing from going for shows alone to blushing in someone’s presence and re-imagining my life next to an actual human. I do apologise for the inconsistency I’ve shown, but want to thank each one of you for still sticking around. We have grown, statistically too!

1,500+

Viewers

30+

Countries

25+

Posts

I was honestly quite disheartened when I actually began to type this one, but once I saw the stats for the year that has just gone by I knew I am lucky and thankful!

Through the past year I realised how much Baba means to me and also how his love for story telling isn’t just about stories. It is his way of sharing little anecdotes from life and lessons with me. Baba, you are my guiding force.

I also shared some of the skin remedies that I swear by and was over-whelmed with the kind of response you guys showed me. And just FYI, those remedies are something I went with when prepping my skin for the D-Day as well! SO do not take them lightly. They are amazing!!

This year I’ve found myself noticing the little details about the ones around me. In the Indian system, getting married means re-rooting yourself. This change can sometimes feel as drastic as having to sometimes explore oneself all over again and understand what you stand for and what your priorities are.
In a scenario not as extreme, I am fortunate to have found a mother who is more than willing to make me feel at home by even trying to fuse the systems of my old home with the new one. A husband who makes it his mission to make me feel happy and comfortable. I’ve found a family that constantly tries to know what makes me happy. Thank you!

Early in my married life I experienced a Long Distance due to the lockdown in lieu of this Pandemic. After struggling with it and receiving a lot of ideas and inputs did I share quick tricks to make it a little less sufferable. I hoped to help anyone and everyone who needed it. The times are tough on everyone in their own unique way!

With all the changes and growing that have come my way this year, the one post that remains closest to my heart and took great strength to write was Of Myself, To Myself. I have never let my guard down the way I did then. I felt vulnerable and yet the senses of being liberated was all-consuming. Thank you for the support and love you have garnered over me!

… and here we are, a year after coming a full circle.

THW turns
2!

Today is a big milestone for The Hazy Whisperer- we are celebrating two years of living, growing and loving. This year has been about the little big things that have come and gone; ergo the title 😉

cảm ơn

A language is more than just words, its an entire culture.

Sleep deprived, queued up for immigrations, holding a cup of iced espresso and filling out my form… *clang*… someone dropped their metal water bottle and it rolled to my feet.
I pick it up in my daze and look for its owner. In under a minute a middle-aged woman walks up to me and asks for her bottle. Even before I knew what was happening, she had bowed down with the most genuine of smiles and whispered “cảm ơn“.

It was a day later that I got to know that she had said Thank You!

It wasn’t something new to hear from someone or a stranger for that matter. Like, on offering my seat to an elderly gentleman on the bus, on sharing my pineapple plate while hiking up a hill under the sun, helping with the directions to a place I’d just visited, allowing a toddler to mess with the travel tag on my bag or just hiring a taxi service to go from one town to the next.
But somehow, the expression felt far more humbling and heartfelt this time.

My trip to Vietnam gave me a perspective that I’d taken for granted for all these years. Its not about the words that we speak, its about the way we speak them that makes the difference.
To say something as simple and common as ‘thank you’ but with a smile, some respect and a little bow- it hit a home run every single time!

Some facts about Vietnamese that could interest you:

  • It has five dialects- Northern, North-Central, Mid-Central, South-Central and Southern Vietnamese. They are mutually intelligible
  • It has three different accents and the tone can change the meaning of a word
  • Modified Latin script is used to write Vietnamese
  • An estimated 90 million people speak it, making it a great foreign language option to study

ALHAMDULILLAH

“Praise be to Allah/ Lord”

It was after a regular work evening, while I was scrolling through my phone and getting my social media fill for the day, that I entered into a conversation with an old time acquaintance turned friend.
I had responded to her comment on one of my posts with “I’m not sure if its the right Urdu word, but all I can say is ‘Inshallah'”. And she ever so humbly replied with “Its an Arabic word, love.”
And thus began the germination of an idea that I had been considering for my Birth-month (if there is such a thing to celebrate). I’m dedicating the next four Weekly Words, starting now, to gratitude in different world languages.


Pronounced as “Al-HAM-doo-Li-lah” , it is an Arabic word which when broken to simpler elements looks something like this-
Al meaning the
Hamd meaning praise
Illah; which is understood as Al+Ilah i.e. The+Deity/Lord

There are four common contexts in which Alhamdulillah is known to be used:
1. As a secular expression, like ‘Thank God’ used in English
2. In Prayer, while thanking the Creator
3. As a term of acceptance, in times of trial and difficulties placed upon us
4. As an expression of gratitude to the God
*when I say God, I’m referring to the form of energy or higher power that you believe in

Originated in the Arabian Peninsula, Arabic is one of the six most spoken languages in the world. In fact, Arabic literally means ‘nomadic’, which makes sense as it was first spoken by the nomadic tribes in the northwestern frontier of the Peninsula.

Some amazing facts about Arabic are:
1. It is the official language in 26 countries
2. Arabic words are written from right to left, numbers from left to right
3. Unknowingly we all know a little bit of Arabic; few English words that come from Arabic are algebra, alchemy, cotton, mummy (the ones in Egypt, not the one at Home), carat (for gold), sugar and lemon

NOTE: Art work credits to Afreen Khundmiri who has been doing some amazing work through her art. She is an Atlanta based Arabic Calligraphy artist, who through her art supports and funds medical treatment for the underprivileged. Do check her out and show some love on instagram and follow her Blog on http://afreenkhundmiri.blogspot.com/?m=1



This was the Weekly Word!
Like, Comment and Share your views on the choice of word and its content.
If you wish to recommend or share a word that you'd like me to explore based on my perspective, then please do send it in through the comments, email or on instagram.
*You can now follow THW on Instagram @thehazywhisperer for regular updates*

Until next week!!

Late Night Gratitude

I’m feeling good, particularly about nothing and yet about everything.

Lying in bed at the owl hours of winter night. Spread out like I’m making snow angels. Staring at the overhead fan, trying to count the number of rotations it makes in a minute and miserably failing each time. I laugh to myself and start over; there is no mad rush for doing something better. The strays on the streets have finished their scavenger patrols and the moon is glowing bright enough. It’s a strangely fulfilling feeling, to not be worried about wasting away time on mindless tasks.

It could be the weather or just the effect of watching multiple hallmark movies over the years. After having a full Wednesday and snoozing through most of it. But for now I’m just happy to be wrapped up in my washed-up comforter, wearing yoga pants from when I was two inches too short and a t-shirt I’m not sure how I procured. The night air is a bit chilly, but I’m just too comfortable to get up and reduce the speed of the fan.

Tomorrow is a workday, but for now I can only think of all the things that have been good and great. My mind is swell and humming a song I heard in an Italian movie with subtitles. I mean, we all have our days; I know I do. I have a range from Buttercups to Lisa Simpson, from Olive Oyl to Roadrunner, from Merida to Cinderella. But today, I’m just feeling good.

I’m feeling good, particularly about nothing and yet about everything.

On last new years’ eve I had made a resolution. It was to make sure that I’d try out all activities that have brought joy to me in the past. Why did I make it? I’m not sure; maybe I was just lazy to think of something new. Or maybe becauseI knew I would still find simple pleasure in some, if not all of them. And here I am, feeling content at the end of the year, making lists for the year to come and mostly feeling grateful.

If the past year were a book, its cover would be a vibrant blend of colours light and dark, all thrown together to create something abstract yet so beautiful. If it were a music piece it would have the music of a saxophone, electric guitar and a violin, all together. If it were a garden it would have grass in shades of green and brown, with some weeds and beautiful little flowers.

The opportunity to meet new people, from different places, has always interested me. I’m not big on socialising, but every once in a while I enjoy getting to know someone completely new and preferably very different from myself. I’ve had the privilege of befriending many people this time. Took a weeklong trip with strangers who became friends and some even influencers in their own way.  Took multiple weekend trips and re-connected with old friends and got introduced to some more. Travelled with family and had the chance to re-connect.

I took up many challenges, aced a few and failed a few, but tried all! Started the blog on the word of a stranger who is now a well-wisher. Tried to shrink the waistline, but that never panned out. Learned how to cook something new.Found some of my work targets unrealistic after having have dived headfirst. Defeated my sweet tooth and gained better control over my impulsive binges. Spent another year desperately wanting for a canine companion. Joined the management class and am actually enjoying it. Enjoyed some beautiful sunrises. Missed quite a few night outs and events. Lost my phone.  Ran the 10k I dreamt of. Read very little by comparison. Exploited netflix subscription. 

I found inspiration and admiration in nature. Learned to be more accepting of others. Struggled a bit with my self image. Mended some fences, lost track of some others. Indulged in self-care, gained some sunburns. Sprained my ankle. Developed better calf muscles. Started being more sensitive towards the environment. Dabbled in make-up. Cried till I couldn’t remember why. Laughed until I was doubled up with pain. Danced by letting it all go. Stayed hydrated through party nights. The year has been a ride, not a very smooth one for sure. But today when I look back at all that has passed and everything that I’ve learnt, I know it’s been a beautiful one.

Taking stock of everything that’s putting an aimless smile on my face sure feels good. While the fan continued to reel over-head, I can’t be bothered by the ramblings of the world. For once I’m not in a hurry to fall asleep or do anything else,because right here everything seems to be comfortable.

The song that I’ve been humming  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gk8oSNMQ6xU