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Monday, February 7, 2011


It was Thursday – the day mom had been waiting for since long. It was her cousin sister in law’s, son’s wedding. Mum and dad were close to her, and hence the excitement. But, my relation with her, just like my relation with most of our relatives, was limited to hello’s and hi’s. I am never too eager to attend my far off relatives marriage’s for two simple reasons. One: for me, these people belonged to a different world all together. They were just concerned about dowry, jewellery, status, and piles of other materialistic things.  And, two : Because I could never figure out, whom to call whom – as, in loads of chacha’s, maama’s, taaya’s, bua’s, at the same place, and I had absolutely no clue, who was who. I chose the safe way, instead, and called them, uncle’s and aunty’s. 

So, it was their son, Sameer’s wedding. The name sounds good, isn’t it ? But, believe me, only the name was! I remembered him as a child. He was huge ! Always hungry, and ready to eat almost everything that came in front of him. I still remember comparing his looks to Bappi lahiri, as a child. I couldn’t imagine, him being slim, now. But, I was told, that his wife to be, was really beautiful, and in his mother’s language, she looked like Katrina kaif. Wow, a Bappi lahiri for a Katrina kaif. What a superb Jodi, I thought. I got ready for the wedding and wore a light blue Patiala salwaar suit, the only patiala suit that I had, which was kept for occasions like, today! I straightened my hair, and  put on small earings. I liked to keep it simple. And there I was, all ready! 

As a child, I liked marriages for two reasons – The music and the food.  Now, of course, seeing well dressed guys around, also added to the list! So, when we reached, out of habit, I was rushing towards the food counter, to hit on the food, when a relative, stopped us. ‘’hey bhagwaan! Kitni lambi hogai hai teri beti ! Isko bol, bas kare ab, nahi toh koi larhka nahi milega shaadi ke lie! ’’ This women blabbered out of forced love.  Wow, Such a lovely way to start a conversation, I thought. The two ladies began talking, while I observed the people around. A cute guy, was kind of checking me out! I had lots of things to eat, like paneer pakode, dosa, chaat, manchurian, and  much more stuff. Yes, you can call me a petu, But thats how I am. Not concerned a bit, about the calorie intake ! So, thereafter, we guys sat , and the varanmaala ceremony started. I was right, Sameer still looked the same- UGLY! While the poor girl, was actually gorgeous. I almost imagined Sameer squeezing her up in their first night. I controlled my laugh as well as my thoughts! I overheard someone say, that my bua’s family had rejected a girl, before, because she was not too fair. And, now, they were so ‘lucky’ that they got this pretty girl as their bahu. I felt weird. I felt bad for this girl. She seemed nice.

 It was for the first time, perhaps, when I was getting closer to the rituals being performed. I felt a kind of connect, there, which I didn’t feel , ever before. May be, I was realising, that even I will pass through this day. The DJ guy, played a senti song, ‘Baabul ghar jaana hai’ , while the girl put on the varanmaala on sameer, because of which she started crying. Something struck my throat. Damn! I had tears in my eyes, too. I cleaned them up quickly, so that no one could notice. I looked around, to make sure that no one had seen me crying, and I was shocked to see that even my dad had moist eyes. What could he have been imagining? Was he thinking, that I too, will have to go, this way, someday. I felt the pain, each time, the bride, hugged her parents.  What was this feeling?? May be, I had really grown up. 

We got back to our car, and all this while, all I thought about was marriage. I will never have an arrange marriage, I thought. I didn’t want to end up with someone like Sameer. Eew !  I couldn’t even imagine being close to such a person. And, then marriage was about the oneness of two souls. But, then I had to find a really tall life partner myself! I just wish kahin un aunty ki baat sach naa hojaye! 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010



There are times, when I feel like crying,
Not bothered about the place or the people,
Ignoring the talks & the laughs around me.

I feel like crying my heart out.
There is no one, to listen to my sighs,
They all ignore my cries.

My heart aches, when I see someone smiling.
Its such a dilemma.

I'm trapped in this rat race,
But my tears chose to set themselves free.

Its like they are giving me a hint,
They want me to set myself free.

The river that was being built from so many days,
finally gets a destination.

And I feel good, and I FEEL GOOD. :X

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


When i get up in the morning,
and see the beauty unwind before my eyes,
When i hear the sweetest voices echoing in my ear,
When i see my mother's face shining brightly like the sun,
It is at that point of time, that i feel, ''Life Is Perfect!''

When i go for my work , 
and my master smiles at me.
When i get an extra tip from a concerned customer,
When I'm allowed to go, 
a little before time,
It is at that point of time, that i feel, ''Life Is Perfect!''

When i get back home,
and see my mother's eager eye's waiting,
When my brother gets me a delicious ice candy,
When my father feels proud of me,
because i worked all day long,
It is at that point of time, that i feel, ''Life Is Perfect!''

When I am able to have three meals a day,
When someone gives me a nice old T-shirt,
When that rich stranger smiles at me,
and say's hello,
It is at that point of time, that i feel, ''Life Is Perfect!"'

I understand not, how the rich are unhappy,
How they get furious over trifles, i understand not,
When they have everything, that we desire,
Yet they frown, Why, I understand not.

I thank god for giving me little moments of happiness,
For the support and the hope he gave me, I thank god.
I have decided to look beyond ''trifles''.
I am a child. I am a laborer.

YES! Life Is Perfect! :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010


It was a cold January evening when Raji aunty came to our home with a packet of sweets. I asked her, "What are these for, aunty? '' She exclaimed with every word coated with ecstasy that her son, Happy, was going foreign.Till the time i could say something back to her, my mother rushed to her and gave her a big hug. ''Congrats ji, congrats!'' She said with equal amount of happiness. ''Which place, aunty?'' I tried to intervene. ''Hmm..Sitco.'' She said. ''Sitco?? Where is this place? I inquired. It's in Australia. She answered. Oh! You mean Sydney? ''Yes, yes. I mean that only'', she said with a straight face. ''ki fark paenda hai'' she added. Wow ! So, she doesn't even care, where her son is going. She's just happy because he is going foreign, i thought to myself. The women carried on with their conversation and i was conveniently ignored. Though, i listened to their chit-chat carefully. I got to know that uncle had sold all his property in the village and they had spent all their savings, so that their son could be happy. For him, HAPPINESS was equivalent to FOREIGN. He didn't care about being a driver, or even a servant there, he just wanted to run off to foreign. Though, Raji aunty would never mention it, but i knew that, not wanting to live with his parents, was another reason for him wanting to go to a foreign land. If you ask me, Happy was a vagabond. He was not good at studies and never sat at home.He would keep wandering uselessly, with his even more useless friends. Of course I was a kid, back then, barely in my teens, but one could tell.

He moved to Sydney. There was an abominable lull at his house here. He used to send money , back home, every 3 months. After an year, when his condition improved, he started sending money every month. The fool didn't know, his parents needed LOVE , not MONEY.

                       *                                                             *

I was in the last year of my graduation, when my life changed drastically.Dad went away forever. He DIED. I was shocked beyond words can explain. He was ill, but nothing was serious. He was improving this moment, and he went away, the next. This is what followed............
Shock. Cries. More Cries. Anger. Silence............................................

                         *                                                             *

Almost six months passed, after my graduation, and i still didn't get a job. We depended on the meager savings that we had. But for how long could we survive on that ? I badly needed a job. I became a wanderer, going to every possible place, in search of a job, but to no avail.Meanwhile, i had to go to government offices, too, to get pa's pension. But hoarse treatment and the order to come on so and so day, was all i got. I came back from the government office for the 'nth' time when mum asked me to sit down with her. She began, ''Prithvi, listen carefully, to what I'm going to say now. You have been looking for a job, since almost an year now, but haven't got one. The money that your dad saved for us is about to finish. We have no option now, beta, you'll have to do this.'' '' Do what mom? '' I asked her, slowly, even though i knew precisely, what she was talking about.'' Beggars can't be choosers, Prithvi. You'll have to do this for me.'' ''What are you talking about, mom?'' I said with a dry throat. '' You'll have to go FOREIGN.'' '' These people don't realize your potential, beta, in foreign, they will.'' She said this with pain in her eyes. I stood up and went away, because i couldn't see that aching face, pleading me to go away from her, just because of the reason that i could feed myself, and i could feed HER. Her face was full of sorrow and anxiety. 
I thought and thought some more. Yes, I wanted to be HAPPY, but i didn't want to be another 'HAPPY'. ''Beggars can't be choosers'' Ma's voice echoed in my ears. I couldn't do this, i said to myself. I hated this.I hated all those people who went to an alien land, for their GREED, for their want of MORE and more. No! I couldn't do this. '' You'll have to do it, my son. You'll have to do it for me. Her voice protested. NO! NO! I said.

                         *                                                             *

A month later, i was in foreign. ''I'' WAS IN FOREIGN. 
I had gone.
I had betrayed my country, but i couldn't betray my mother.
I had gone. I had gone..I HAD GONE............

: Isha J :)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

My first Blog :) '' THAT GIRL NEXT DOOR ''

HI ! So, this is my first blog entry :) i was thinking to make a blog since an year from now, and finally, it has come to existence! Earlier, i used to open blogger, fill in all my details, and then when it would ask me what to name my blog, i would ponder uselessly for a while, and then, on not getting an appropriate name, i would just log off! An year back, i thought that whenever i would make my blog, I'd name it as 'A NEW BEGINNING' , but one of my friends made a blog with the same name. so, finally, today, i zeroed on the name ''THAT GIRL NEXT DOOR'' .

Lets talk about this name only in my first post and the reason why I'd name it so. We all know that girl next door, who is nice and genuine,sober and decent, has a charming smile and is a good doer, yet she is never noticed much, may it be, in Punjab, in India, in the US or anywhere else in the world. We all know at least one such girl next door. For the outsiders, she is only a sweet and nice girl, but when it comes to being successful, or achieving new heights in a job, we often don't mention that girl. She is just a commoner for most of the people.We think, that she is sweet and intelligent and that's it, she is married off and the story ends. But what we don't know is that every girl next door, has a power. The power to achieve, the power to success, the power to learn and the power to dream! Of course, not everyone would agree with me when i say that the girl next door is not noticed, but then you are free to think your way, and I'm free to think mine.

I too am like that girl next door, people consider me nice, genuinely, but when it comes to success or making a mark, they are unaware of my capacities. But, i too, have the power to dream, the power to achieve.Now,it depends on me, how I utilize this power and make a mark for myself. And, i just want to say one thing, that never ever underestimate a girl next door, or even a guy, in that case. We may be simple and decent, but when it comes to showing what we really are and living up to our own expectations, we never lag behind! I don't want to get too philosophical right now, so, lets just leave my first post here!

I am new here, so obviously it will take me a little time to know about the know-how's of blogging. I hope you will help me in this! AND please don't hesitate to leave a comment, whether you like my posts or not. they mean a lot to a writer :) I hope that I'll be able to blog regularly. THIS is my type of place, where no one can stop me from expressing my views! And i hope to see some followers soon :)



When i was a little child, there were many restrictions on me. I was told not to do this, not to do that, not to say this and not to say that. My father often said," nai beta, aise nai bolte " or my mother would say, " shhh! chup kar ja ! " or someone else would say, " be quiet! what if they listened to what you said ! " My teacher would ask me to be quiet and not to disturb the class, my brother would order me to go to another room, so that he could not be disturbed with my constant talks, my relatives would say me to shut my mouth in front of other relatives, when they never did! phew! So, overall, I was asked to be quiet and my voice was suppressed. I was a little child then.

BUT, times have changed! I am no more a young toddler, and have grown up now. I wont listen to those chachas and maamas and relatives and brothers and teachers and everyone else, who stopped me to voice my views! Here i am, a free bird now. I can express whatever i want, about whoever i want, and none can stop me ! This feeling gives immense pleasure to me. So, goodbye to all the chachas and maamas! ;)



I stand here amongst millions of people,
who seem to be blabbering endlessly.
I know not, what they say,
but it seems like they are fighting over trifles.
'I lost my new cell'' , i can almost imagine one say, 
while the little kid orders his dad to get him a new car.

I move ahead, ignoring this group,
i see a rally passing.
I know not what they say,
but it seems like they are fighting over religion.
I 'hear' one say, 'God is one' ,
while the other protests and says ' ik omkar.'
I smile to myself and laugh at their ignorance,
because all that they say is alike.

Smiling, i move ahead,
I can see the traffic moving.
I know not, what they say, 
but it seems like everyone's furious and moving in a rat race,
everyone's honking madly and keen to move ahead.

I pass them, ignoring this group,
and come across two different clusters.
I know not, what they say,
but it seems like they are keen to fight a war,
No, they don't care about death or destruction,
they want more, and more, and more.

I ignore this bunch, and move ahead,
i see the parliament house.
I know not, what they say,
but it seems it would be better, 
if we ourselves guarded our country, not they.
I see someone bang a chair, 
and 'hear' the other abuse.
I can't bear what i see,
instead, moving ahead, i choose.

At the end of the day, when i can bear no more, i go back to my place,
I just reconcile what all i saw, and have nothing to say,
I just thank god for making me deaf.
If this is what 'normal' people do,
I'd rather be deaf all my life!