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Human Tapestry And All That

I find myself in unfamiliar territory, and have resorted to using this platform as an excuse to escape the moment. Wouldn't be the first time.

I've come to realize that one of my greatest, and if I may say so, most underrated assets is the ability to be with myself. It's not that I don't love my people, I'd gladly spend my hours with them when the opportunity presents itself. But I look at it as a gift that cannot be taken for granted, not a given. So, on an ordinary day, when life has everybody on their own path, I can be merrily comfortable in my own company.

Ever since I embarked upon my counselling journey, I have been advocating self-care when I can afford it - mental, physical, spiritual. I won't pretend that it works out everyday, but on the days it does, God, that's a beautiful day.

Today is one of those days. I have actively been trying to expose myself to new experiences. Toward that effort, I decided to pay a visit to the salon to explore what they'd perhaps call traditional femininity (I wonder if this makes me sound like a feminist or a misogynist, or am I the only one thinking about it?). Currently, I'm hiding behind this screen to distract myself from the very first-world feeling of getting a pedicure. I probably need to explore why indulging in anything beyond the moderate gives me guilt pangs. Also, I really want to talk about why people put themselves through the torment that is threading, but that deserves a rant of its own.

Anyway, what I will talk about is spectating humanity. That's usually my go-to activity when I'm out on one of my solo excursions. There is nothing more endearing than sitting in a public place and observing the people around you. That old couple sharing a meal, that family clicking pictures, the young romance blooming on the far side. The faces of the attendants in the stores, and the million dreams their eyes hold within them. That cute guy that passes by you, the security guard that wishes you a good day. I've always thought about the number of photographs I'm inadvertently a part of, a permanent addition etched in some strangers' memories.

I'm constantly surprised by the enigma that is humankind, both, at our startling cruelty and unexpected benevolence. My two-wheeler broke down on the way back home. Had to happen one day or another, poor kid has seen better days. Amidst the impatient honking behind me, I did my best to hug the side of the road and plead with it to not give up on me. I don't know if it was the visible distress in my body language, or the fact I was an apparent damsel exhibiting it, but almost everybody who drove by stopped to ask after me. Eventually, a bunch of young men parked ahead, came back, and ensured that I was up and running again. As a young girl, I was taught to never halt for anybody on the street (my police-retired granddad's stories had a lasting impact on my mother). But here we were, no names, no numbers, no monetary transaction, no reason to stop. A perfect feel-good, albeit thought-provoking end to a perfect feel-good evening.

Throughout the day, reflections upon feminism, preservation of mental health, solitude and society came to me (I also figured out the perfect gift for myself, hoping this note here would help me remember it till I can find it). Anxieties found a way to pop in too, although in a rare occurrence, I was successful in pushing them out. Some days should just be lived out here, in the tangible world, not in our heads. It was a good day to have a good day.

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Grateful and more, yes, but fuck my life.


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