This should have been date no 36 or 37 but it skipped my mind. A day in Amritsar can be spent visiting the Golden Temple and the Jallianwala bagh and eating at the famous- Beera Chicken and then visiting the Wagah border- which I skipped. Instead, I spent a couple of hours taking respite from the heat at the Subway, in the vicinity of the temple.
Lay in bed last night…exhausted by the heat…wondering what I was doing. ‘ What will you achieve? Whom will this impact? ‘, asked AA, once. ‘Me’, I thought quitely to myself. I am a person plagued by self questioning-keeps me up many a nights.
Woke up feeling lower than usual…it happens a lot. I’m up in the air one minute and feeling like crap the next. Lay in bed liking people’s posts on fb. ‘Aap ki kismat buhat achhi he, bhakti likhi he issme,’ told me the Sadhu Baba, I met on the road. ‘ You people have been telling me this for almost two decades. Bhagwaan bhi bole ge, jo humare pitaji bolte he- ‘Ye meri nahin ho sakti!’ I tell him. He just smiles in response.
Looked at the empty bed next to me. ‘ ‘ Don’t know about the bhakti, some of are just a mix of adventure and loneliness.’
Paonta Sahib, which is at a distance of over 200 kms away from Delhi is a town in Sirmour district of Himachal Pradesh. The Gurudwara in this town, has historic significance for Sikhs, as the Dasam Granth was written by their tenth guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji, here.
The Dasam Granth, is a controversial text, as many historians claim that only part of it has been compiled by the Guru and the rest by the 52 poets who were part of the durbar at Anandpur Sahib.
During my stay, I visited the Gurudwara and headed to the Riversong Restaurant for dinner.
Do you know what it’s like to feel a sense of impending doom and an adrenaline rush, both at the same time and in equal measures? That’s what I feel at the moment. I find tears rolling down my eyes many a times and my life flashing before my eyes. I dismiss it, thinking its just fear!
Have you heard the story of a man who ran everywhere so that he could cheat death? But Death caught up with him where it had to, the way it had to! It keeps running on my mind. That and the deal I made with God and Death a couple of years ago, ‘not like this. Just let me get up one more time.’
I’m back on my feet and its as good a time as any! So, I’m winding up my worldly business, paying my dues…mostly the emotional ones.
Sent a few thank you messages to cousins and friends on some Whattsapp groups. A cousin who overthinks like me asked, ‘Are you leaving the group? It seems like a goodbye.’ I had half a mind of telling her the truth- it kind of is! But that would have freaked everybody out a bit, so I thought it’s better not say anything at all.
I just recently realised the trouble with being a wretch. If anytime soon is my dying day, I have so many nice things to say to people. I’m sure, nice people don’t suffer this dilemna. You know how hard it is to write anything pleasant? I want to puke on myself for getting so sentemotional!
But still let’s give this a shot-
If you got a message from me today on some group, which may have seemed random to you, it was my way of saying thank you for being a part of my journey.
For the family members who are not part of those groups- lots of love.
For Sheel Aunty, G.L.C and A.S- thank you for the best teachers a girl could ask for.
For all those who were with me for a while and left, our time together will always mean a lot.
For G.D-You were my first and last mountain. My should have been! This camel will always be grateful for everything, all of it because the good just outweighed the bad. Plus, no one can match your ways of showing affection- hitting the woman on her forehead. You Caveman, you!
For R.B- There will always be a world of words left unsaid between us. ‘Kuch tumhare liye aankhon mein chuppa rakha tha…na dekha to kuch shikaayat bhi nahin.’
For The One Who Waits-you spoil me rotten. I’m touched and blessed. I have no other words!
For Shets-you crazy, mad, absolutely mental human being. I’m going to say something you’ve been dying to hear for the past 14 years. ‘I Love You’, not the way you love me, you silly goose. But still more than I love most, that’s why I saved you from myself. Appreciate my altruism. Save ho gaya bete, save!
For my assistant- I owe you my life. You saved me from a mob, from death and most of all from myself. As you say, the easiest way to handle me is to never say ‘no’! You’re the only living person I know, who says yes to all my crazy ideas.
For S.R a.k.a Ocean- who I hardly ever get to meet these days and K.A, thank you for not leaving my side when things got tough. Appreciate it.
For Mum- I wish you would have fought the world harder and remained the superstar you were. That woman is my inspiration.
For Dad- Partyyy! You can adopt the child you deserve.
Let the Epitaph read- Here lies a woman, who died the way she lived-sticking it to the world!
Mojo has the perfect picture, which will look absolutely awesome in an obituary.
Parting Words- ‘Qabr par mere sar utha ke khadi ho zindagi, aise marna he mujhe. Kuch maangna baaqi nahin. Kuch maangna baaqi nahin. Jitna mila kaafi hai.’
P.S-I thought I should clean up my basement, then I thought in any case I will have to haunt anyone, who messes with my books. If you dare to cremate me, I shit you not, I’m coming back from Hell. Make me into a fancy tree. You would think, I would get rid of all the poems and love letters, the Anais Nins and the K.S but what the hell, enjoy reading them.
Oh, my will-
Give my personal belongings to Nidhi Singhal, she can donate it to the right charities.
My photographs will go to my assistant. He has been informed what to do with them.
Money can go to Khalsa Aid.
LIC Policy- Please start the -Jaswin Kochar Foundation.
It’s the first day of the month in which I was born and is it going to be a dramatic one! One is soon (God willing and Mom willing), going to be heading on an adventure. The kind that makes my gut wrench. Why, you may ask, am I doing it then? Well, once a masochists always a recovering masochists! Or like Tom Hanks said, it’s the choice between faith and fear!
As I got all my affairs sorted out for a couple of months and got my finances in order, a friend suggested that I should put my adventure up as a ‘BitGiving Campaign’. You know my Dad taught us, ‘there are no free lunches, so don’t ask people for favours. It’s better to do someone a favour than to ask for one because they will hold it over your head.’ I have tried to follow that, as much as is possible. That’s the reason why even when I went to Nepal during the earthquake and to Kashmir during the floods, though friends kept offering to give me money, I refused to take it.
So, why now? Most people I know, have the ability to do and fund most things they are passionate about, so crowd funding is not something I would do normally. But you know I’m perpetually on some trip or the other. The study of social behaviour is one of my favourite pass times and this is a perfect little experiment, which I am totally enjoying. The handful of people who were sent the request to ‘help Saadiya celebrate her birthday on the road’, 75% out of those have had the sweetest reaction. There’s been an outpour of good wishes…some of my friends have already started contributing and I am so touched by the support. Especially, because it’s not for ‘a cause’, the name of the campaign itself suggests, the people who are contributing are helping ‘me’ celebrate ‘my birthday’, doing what I like to do best.
As for the sceptics-Every year, we spend thousands of rupees, if not lakhs socialising with the people we know. Lunches, dinners, birthdays, anniversaries, marriages and what not! We spend an awful lot of time, energy and money trying to maintain those relationships. But I have always wondered why? All relations are based on- don’t say love, I will barf, they are based on convenience and on a barter system. That’s the reason why people feel let down at the lowest points of their lives, when they have nothing to give emotionally, physically and materialisticly- no one feels any, love for them at that time. Everything is a barter, you giving me presents on my birthday is something you feel compelled to do since, either I have done the same or because it’s just a social norm. But from 2017, I’m officially done with the pleasantries!
In a couple of years I am going to be forty, there’s a particular kind of life I want to lead and a particular kind of people I want to be associated with. I want be around wild untamed spirits, dreamers and rebels and most of all supporters. I’m done for this life time with the nay sayers. So, each year on my birthday I am going to ask people to help me fulfill a wish-it could be for me, for someone else, for the foundation that I will someday start in my brother’s name. From now onwards, I would rather hear, ‘good luck’ rather than ‘happy birthday’, ‘I support you’ rather than ‘I love you’. I no longer want bags, jewels, flowers (actually I love flowers, so one would be nice) and fluff. I just want people who say, ‘we got your back babe!’ It’s the start of a new era!
Since BitGiving keeps suggesting, I should write a blog about the campaign, sharing the link to -Help Saadiya Celebrate Her Birthday On The Road.