Vincent van Gogh: At Eternity’s Gate.

“There is a great difference between one idler and another idler. There is someone who is an idler out of laziness and lack of character, owing to the baseness of his nature. If you like, you may take me for one of those. Then there is the other kind of idler, the idler despite himself, who is inwardly consumed by a great longing for action who does nothing because his hands are tied, because he is, so to speak, imprisoned somewhere, because he lacks what he needs to be productive, because disastrous circumstances have brought him forcibly to this end. Such a one does not always know what he can do, but he nevertheless instinctively feels, I am good for something! My existence is not without reason! I know that I could be a quite a different person! How can I be of use, how can I be of service? There is something inside me, but what can it be? He is quite another idler. If you like you may take me for one of those.”

― Vincent van Gogh, The Letters of Vincent van Gogh.

Something in the Rain.

What could be merrier than waking up to the trickling sounds of raindrops?

One year ago, I watched a Korean Drama titled “Something in the Rain.” which I initially watched because of Jung Hae In, however, as the drama proceeded, I was like who Jung Hae In? I got so lost into the magnificently written storyline of the drama. The drama encompassed the story of a teenager who used to love one and only the best friend of his elder sister. Now the twist was that Juliet in this story, of course, was also older than Romeo. Their romance was full of ecstatic emotions and feelings which rendered me speechless to an extent that I can still watch that drama again and again. You must be wondering why am I suddenly being nostalgic over a drama. Well, I don’t know, but rain always reminds me of that particular drama for a reason unknown to me. I believe that rain plays a very significant role in love stories, be it the commencement of a perfect love story, the first magical kiss of two lovers amid the rain or the confession of love for each other while walking in the rain, hands in each others’ hands, or out of the blues, bidding each other the bitter last goodbye on one rainy morning.

She entered the campus wearing her favorite hot pink sheath dress that wrapped her body perfectly, like a fancy Christmas present ready to be delivered. He was standing in the hallway, as usual, and turned back with that perfect, innocent smile that he used to give her every morning. A rigid rock as she might appear to be, her heart used to melt like a tealight candle on the verge of volatility, pouring from head to heels, drop by drop. Around 3:00 pm it started pouring with all force. Stepping out of the cafe, they were going back to their classes but suddenly she asked him to just take a mini stroll before they head back home. He nodded and they started walking towards the busiest area of the campus. He was already holding her hand but after a while, his grip changed a bit as he slowed down and said, “You are my life.” What? she replied as if she didn’t hear anything, however, she did, of course. The girl who could hear him from rooms apart, how could she possibly not know whatever he said in that very moment.

“Stop!” she commanded, as bossy as she has ever been. “Stand still right here, and say it again!” Although he looked confused, yet smiled as charmingly as ever. “I mean this moment shall be dealt very seriously, such moments shall be made special and, of course, romantic.” she tried to give a justification of her strange behavior. “You are my life, and I hope to hear the same thing from your side very soon.” She definitely was on cloud nine, however, she replied in that hard-to-get kind of tone: “Okay, I will, but when it would rain next time. I promise I would stand in the very same place, holding your hand, with rain pouring on us just like today, and only then you would get to hear these historical lines by me.” Looking down, he smiled again and they started walking back towards their classes.

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They have this very unique but strong charisma. They turn the heads wherever they go together. They are like the two perfect picture frames with conjoining links that make it compulsory for them to be displayed together, otherwise, either of them would become meaningless. “Soulmates,” as they claim themselves to be, I am sure they are much more than that. Their love expands beyond the limits of the horizon, where the sea meets the sky, and elevates above the sky, encompassing the orbits of the celestial bodies floating in the universe.

 

The next day, she wore an alluring blue frock and regretted as she stepped out to see that it was still raining. She thought that it was fine as she would be staying indoors and thus her new frock would be saved from destruction. At the end of the day, as they were standing in the shade, watching the rain trickle down, making ripples in the voids among the tiles of the floor, she held his hand tightly and asked him to go for a walk with her. The girl who was always careful as in not to get her clothes and shoes wet was now all out and about for this stranger which shows that her heart has never been this happier ever before. When they reached that same place, where he poured his heart in front of her, she screamed to stop by putting her hands upon his shoulders. Hopping right in front of him, she sandwiched his hands between both her hands and said, “You are my life, see all the odds were in your favor and thus it started raining today as well. Are you happy now?” He nodded in agreement and a beautiful smile on his lips that made her heart as light as the clouds in the sky above them. She looked down at his shoes which were then completely drenched in water, she smiled to herself as if to say: “The stupid things we do in love are the most precious ones. Love is always spontaneous and never planned. Sudden moments of love and compassion are profoundly magical. Love is selfless and makes us do things that we won’t ever even do for our own selves.”  This was a walk to remember for them, as well as the start of a perfect love story.

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There have been many rainy days since then in their love story, all of them being equally memorable and precious. One evening as the sky became dark with heavy clouds and winds started to roar, they both stood on the terrace side by side. She turned on her camera to take a picture of that perfect winter-ish sky. She still remembers how all of a sudden, he subtly kissed her cheek. She remembers several rainy days where he didn’t leave her hand for a second to avoid her slipping off on the dampened ground. How they drank soup by availing a flat 50% discount offer on her favorite restaurant and munching on her favorite chop-suey which she initially thought of as uncooked noodles. How he suddenly stood up from the bench and went out in the rain when she was on the call, just to make her mad, but didn’t let her go in the rain by tickling her back on to the bench.

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They made adorable memories, like staring at the robot camera and wondering how it rotates and why does the pole move with the rotation, also naming their happy meal toys as they hug each other, playing with the snail as she commanded him to touch one of the snail’s eyes, but he, being too kind, refused to do so, she, coming back to kiss him the final goodbye as her reputation of “being a good kisser” was at stake. Sudden plans of going out on strolls and grabbing something to eat, watching a movie, buying things together, or destroying the furniture and crockery of the restaurants, each and every moment was magical in her life and she could never forget how important he was and is to her, by all means. Words can never suffice to express their ocean of infinite love and memories.

They say life is a bumpy road, but love is a total roller coaster ride, full of turns and twists, I add. The moment you feel like everything is finally smooth, something challenging joins the chat. In love, there are these moments of extreme joy and happiness that will make you feel like the luckiest human to ever exist, however, there would also be some overwhelming nights where your stomach would feel heavy and your sobs would choke you on your own tears.

On a beautiful rainy afternoon, when their smoldering hearts were bubbling with immense love, they had their first magical kiss under the blue sky, which was still pouring the liquor of joy and ecstasy as a toast to the celebration of love. He held her in his strong embrace, making her feel protected, and guarded by every evil who had taken birth in her life. She felt him, and every inch of him, which made her all his’. As their hearts continued to beat in a rhythm, she vowed to herself: “Till death do us part, I would stay in thy protection, I would always seek your light in the times of darkness, and in your embrace, shall I always find solace. I submit myself to you today, my body and soul, and I shall always love and cherish you till my last breath.” She did not move and stayed still, for she did not want to part with him ever again, she wanted to be a whole, a piece of perfection, a majestic composition with him. He is to her like the notes to the symphony, like the paints to a blank canvas, and as the sun to the sky. He is to her, a divine gift of God; A remarkable creation, and the epitome of perfection. She is absolutely in love with him.

 

The rain has proved to be a perfect backdrop, in the setting of their love story, an ancient relic on the front wall of their dream house, that is capable of invoking all the wholesome emotions and feelings like happiness, pleasure, tranquility, and ecstasy, however, rain can also make us feel melancholic and overwhelmed at times. Rain could bring joy when the foundations are strong, however, if the foundations have already weakened, the rain can bring immense damage.

It was an unusually cold summer morning when she woke up to the sound of merry trickles of rain. Right before her alarm started buzzing, she got a phone call from him. After an exchange of confusing and melancholic arguments, they decided not to talk again, for the sake of each other. As she bid him a heavy farewell, her heart ached a little, I think it was that vow of neverending love, that was shedding the tears of sorrow. After the phone call got disconnected, she sat on her bed for a while, lost in nostalgia. It was difficult for her to comprehend whatever had happened. 

“You have no idea how important timing is in a relationship.”

—Yoon Jin Ah, Something in the Rain.

“Sometimes, things need time, people need time, time to reflect upon the loop-holes, and learn from their mistakes so that when they finally get back together, they could love each other with more compassion and devotion and open heart than ever,” she thought. “Nonetheless, I shall keep on loving you my love, for my heart, has sworn upon a vow, a vow made from heart to heart. I will wait for you to come back to me like you used to do,” she murmured silently. Her heart kept shedding tears in solitude, as the rain continued to drizzle down her window, whispering the words of solace to her heart.

Whenever it would rain, she will think of him, its like rain is their symbol of love.

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Love is a strictly qualitative experience, it can increase quantitatively over time, but the quality takes time to improve. However, sometimes a person steps into your life at the right time, giving you the lifetime experience. This encounter becomes unforgettable and you lose yourself solely and completely in his thoughts. This is the person who will respect you, cherish you, sacrifice his own beliefs, his own ideologies, and attitudes for you. He won’t hesitate and make you a priority over everything and anything. The one who will be possessive about you but not to a toxic extent. He will make you feel like the perfect being of God and the ultimate shape of perfection. He will avoid everything and anything that could make you feel bad or bring your self-esteem down in any way. Although the definition of love, perfection, and criteria of judgment varies from person to person, however, if you ever find such a person (either he or she), remember that he could be the one! Don’t lose him.

 

Being a Blogger can be Toilsome Sometimes.

Being a blogger could be a devious job sometimes. There might be days where you won’t even get a second to make it to your typewriter (laptop in the modern terms), because either you are too sleepy or have so much else going on in life that keeps you occupied, and then, those days where there would be so much going on in your mind that you won’t be able to sleep a wink before dribbling your anticipation on the writing area of your blog. Being a blogger is one thing, being a dedicated blogger, another. There are a lot of meticulous writers out there who create delightful content every morning.

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They seem to me like those perfect artists who set up their typewriter on the kitchen table every morning, with a kettle full of bubbling tea on the stove. The sound of clinking silver utensils in the kitchen, along with the pulsating dark and light shadows of the ivy tree as the sunlight plays hide and seek with its leaves create spell-bound environs for a perfect composition. After pouring a generous amount of tea in a mug of their favorite majestic tea set, accompanied by crispy, golden hashbrowns, they settle comfortably in the chair and start typing while sipping and munching on their divine breakfast. Ps: Breakfast can vary from person to person depending upon what appeals to them the most. For instance, talking about myself, I would definitely prefer a greasy potato waffle oozing with cheddar cheese, along with a mason jar full of whipped cream over the cold coffee.

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I have always imagined myself to be such a writer, however, being a student and that too in this catastrophic phase of the 21st Century, the ideas of being such a writer and managing my workload efficiently don’t get along really well. I am insane, sleep-deprived, deadline-bound, and extremely irritated by the messed up schedule due to never-ending online classes. However, it doesn’t matter what we have idealized and fantasized about our lives, in fact, what matters the most is either we are living our life to its fullest or not? Are we getting the best out of it, learning new things, and encountering adventures unknown to our mind and body before or not?

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What if I can’t update my feed by posting new content every day? I get to sleep more hours than the average people, which is facilitating my dark circles, bound to cook and bake during the quarantine even if I don’t want to sometimes, enhance my baking expertise while meeting up with the bulk of deadlines everyday revamp my writing prowess. It is up to us how we look at the things around us, it is our perception of looking at the things that immensely shape up our life as either positive or vice versa. When we look at our dreams and future plans that have not come true yet or were skipped/missed somehow, we denote these voids either in the sense of “deprivation,” or in the sense of “opportunity to learn and experience something else, something new, maybe better.” 

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Most of us tend to set goals and make an elevated checklist of magnificent ambitions. It’s great to have goals, to plan one step ahead, and to dream big. However, dwelling so much into those ambitions that they start ruling your emotions and mental stability is toxic. Aim for a better tomorrow but try to make the best out of today. Make sure that your tomorrow is conjoined and linked with your present somehow because only then your life can transition smoothly from one phase to another, slowly and gradually. Aiming for the stars when you have just gotten out of the bed doesn’t make sense, does it? Obviously not! For that, you have to get up, knead your sparkling eyes that have just woken up from a peaceful stroll in the dreamland’s serene prairies, and prepare them to witness the same, dull reality of life. We shall take one step at a time to reach our final destination.

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Feeling lazy? Sleep. An overdose of energy is boosting up your morale? Do whatever you feel like investing your energies in. Do your homework, prepare for the quiz, complete your pending assignments, take a stroll in the evening, bake your favorite cake, relish on hearty dinner with your family, laugh your lungs out, do gardening, water your mini cactus, earn money, freelance, or simply make yourself a refreshing cup of coffee as a sweet treat because you deserve all the self-care, inner peace, and self-love in this world. Moreover, trust me it is not considered as the selfishness by any means. It is a physical and emotional need of every human but sadly, most of us don’t realize the rights of our body and mind. Amid the buzz of keeping everyone around us happy, meeting the deadlines, writing for others, making somebody’s day, texting to check up on others, cooking and baking to share the love and strengthen the family bonds, the infringement of these major rights lead us to inner dissatisfaction, which grows stronger and overwhelming with time, without us realizing the reason behind this distress. Do whatever makes you happy and that is the only secret ingredient that will make your cauldron of happiness bubble and bubble.

Adios,

xoxo.

Vincent van Gogh: Dear Theo.

“I know well that healing comes-if one is brave-from within, through profound resignation to suffering and death, through the surrender of your own will and of your self-love. But that is of no use to me; I love to paint, to see people and things and everything that makes our life-artificial, if you like. Yes, real life would be a different thing, but I do not belong to that category of souls who are ready to live and also at any moment to suffer. I am everything but courageous in sorrow, and everything but patient when I am not feeling well, though I have rather a good deal of patience in keeping to my work.”

― Vincent van Gogh, Dear Theo.

The Complete Letters of Vincent van Gogh.

“If one feels the need of something grand, something infinite, something that makes one feel aware of God, one need not go far to find it. I think that I see something deeper, more infinite, more eternal than the ocean in the expression of the eyes of a little baby when it wakes in the morning and coos or laughs because it sees the sun shining on its cradle.”

―Vincent Van Gogh

Life: A Carousel of Old and New

While scrolling the picture carousel on my cell-phone, I re-lived each and every moment of my life so far. Desperately and passionately we tend to make memories because they say that memories never die. They don’t, I agree, but why didn’t anybody tell us that the memories sure do live, however, the people we make memories with, would all leave. Not all, I would like to add, some stays.

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I still remember how I struggled so hard to convince my dad for purchasing a vintage polaroid camera. “We liberate our life by capturing the moments in it,” I exclaimed enthrallingly to him. However, I was too innocent to understand the weird, mean smirk on his face at that time which low-key offended me and I confess calling my dad a boring sloth who doesn’t get excited that easily as me. Some lessons are learned throughout our lives, slowly and gradually, whereas, some lessons are hard-learned and they are the ones that tend to hurt the most. 

Scrolling down the pictures, as we say in sciences, I only found some constant variables as my Family and some friends, while the rest of the variables kept on changing with time, age, and distances. The pictures of our secondary school graduation were full of colors and uniform artistry that said very main-stream things like “Forget me not,” “You will always be my best friend” and the funniest expression in this world, “I would never be able to forget you.” Looking at the pictures of postcards and signed uniforms full of such humorous slogans made me feel awfully mesmerized as well as low-key wicked when I realized that none of those “best friends forever” are anywhere to be seen now. None of them contact me, and neither do I. There have been strange incidents where my best friend crossed me and didn’t even bother to say hello to me because she was with her new fam-jam and best friends forever, while I was with mine. 

They say that if one is out of sight, consider him out of the mind too. I would religiously preach this notion because distance tends to change everything; how we feel about each other, how much do we care, how much time we give to one another and the list is long. We even forget the faces of each other in no time and if someday, and that too by chance, we see each other in our dreams, for the rest of that day we can’t believe that we actually remembered the face of our best friend from grade 5 who ate, slept, studied for 7 hours daily, played, did homework, quarreled, went to the cafeteria, and even bathroom with us for whole 5 years. Insane, right?

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This is how we humans have been programmed. We might call it cruel but believe me it is the best feature available in the market so far. If our mind chips did not have this inbuilt feature of forgetfulness, trust me most of us would have been living in dire misery. We forget so that we could move on. We forget so that we could start fresh, bring the change that we couldn’t yesterday in our devastated lives. A day could be spell-boundingly ecstatic and you might never want to forget even a single moment spent in it, however, another day could be a real-life “living on the edge’ kind of experience and you don’t even like to remember a single second of it. Joy can be found even in the dirtiest corners of a broken house. However, misery is something that can leave ever-lasting imprints on your mind that can only be wiped off with the soothing touch of new, happy memories. So just liberate your mind, and let go of all the happy and the sad moments in your life because the moments that were actually happy can always be felt close to your heart, and the moments that deprived you of happiness, they are not worth remembering at all except the lessons that they taught you.

Life is a spinning carousel of the old and the new. Now I understand the smirk on my father’s face and are well-aware of why he didn’t get excited that easily upon meeting new people and exploring new things, it’s because he had more people out of his life than were in his life at that point. It’s because his carousel had spun longer than mine.

Vincent van Gogh: Country Road in Provence by Night.

“Looking at the stars always makes me dream, as simply as I dream over the black dots representing towns and villages on a map.

Why, I ask myself, shouldn’t the shining dots of the sky be as accessible as the black dots on the map of France?

Just as we take a train to get to Tarascon or Rouen, we take death to reach a star. We cannot get to a star while we are alive any more than we can take the train when we are dead. So to me it seems possible that cholera, tuberculosis and cancer are the celestial means of locomotion. Just as steamboats, buses, and railways are the terrestrial means.

To die quietly of old age would be to go there on foot.”

― Vincent van Gogh