Amazing people who make me go on n on n on:)

25 September, 2013

Lunchboxing with my Mind.

And I’ve just returned from watching The Lunchbox.
Strange it is how sometimes things happening around you are not motivation enough to write but a contrived screenplay of a couple of hours on the big screen forces you to send your brain cells for a little jog or may be a leisurely saunter in the by-lanes of your mind, so far blocked or ignored in life’s humdrum.

I knew the story would not appeal to my husband, so I tagged along a couple of my girlfriends. We had seen Lootera and although he enjoyed it, he went weary with the pace. The Lunchbox seemed even tardier, like a soft uncertain wind trying to raise its head in a placid backdrop but bogged down before it can rise, managing only to rustle a few already withered or on-the-verge-of-crumpling leaves. Most people can’t relate to sentiments, especially when we are used to of motion or suppression.

I loved the movie.
Perhaps because I am, at a certain level one such leaf watching autumn slowly color my evergreen pride?
Perhaps because the idea of two people who are absolute strangers getting to bond through a thread of simple conversations, is not new skin for me?
Perhaps because as a woman I could relate to the restlessness in Ila’s form that wants to be heard, wants to be important and seeks a purpose of this all?
Perhaps because as a human I could empathize with Mr. Fernandez, a man who knows how to take care of himself but yearns to be taken care of?

Irrfan’s character is heart-warming, a face in the crowd yet subconsciously refusing to accept being one. He looked into that bathroom mirror and said that the space smelt of his grandfather and stiflingly comprehended that he was that grandfather ~ it was nothing short of a revelation for anyone who beholds such a marvelous conceptualization. He says he realized then he had turned old. Here was a man welcoming an early retirement, a man who lost his wife to old age and the same man who did not fathom when old age dawned on him. How amazingly well captured an emotion it was that only someone on this side of the fence would relate to!

Do we really realize how gradually age catches up on us? One day we are twenty and things move on, like a whirlwind sometimes and like the standstill of waters at the other. While weighed down in the twenties to establish our identity and lives, all too soon, thirty knocks at our door. We open the gates and let him in, as though it was in guise of opportunity, with a bit of apprehensions and some exhilaration too, for such a thing is anticipation. Little by little every day the same old drudgery as nothing changes and then one fine day we are forty and out of the blue everything’s changed forever.

But does the person who live inside the aging body really change? His aspirations, his fancies, his dreams, his desires, they remain ageless. He molds himself to the accepted beliefs of the society to behave in a certain mature way because that’s what adults do, to think in a grown up manner, to give up on particular things because it is the way the wheels of the society turn. He surrenders considering perhaps his aging bones too weak to stand before the frail fingers that could be raised. But the heart ~ It still remains at some threshold where it found its identity and continues to stay there. It just loses its legs or will to move on.

How empty are lives that get trapped in the wheels of earning a livelihood everyday so they have no time to stop and stare even at each other perhaps? And then some other voids that just make you stop and stare at them, having no motivation to stop doing it? Lives that have within their grasp everything a normal person should be glad to have and yet feel like sand hastening through the gaping edges of the begging palm.

I remember in the early years of my marriage I would leave little notes in my husband’s lunchbox, his office pouch, his wallet, his cupboard drawer, etc.-something that would remind him of me out of the blue and make him smile. Yes, a hopeless romantic like that. I would put up a picture of someone with open arms asking for an embrace or a sticker that said “I want you every day” in the inner cupboard door to catch his eye as soon as he’d open it. I would send him random messages of “miss you” at particular times to build the stimulation of meeting me upon reaching home eventually. I don’t know when I stopped. I don’t know when it began to seem that he had more important things to do than get bothered by inconsequential notes popping every now and then, every here and somewhere.
We give up and give in without realization.

When the protagonist says he should have looked at his wife laughing at those now forlorn serials a bit longer, my heart went out to him. Why do we realize we should have loved a little more, laughed a little longer, lived a little livelier only when it is no longer possible to do so?

I came across arguments on Twitter that stated had it been an aging woman and a young man in the same scenario, the society would have not been so generous in accepting it. Sad, that we want acceptance of the society for every bloody thing. They fail to realize that it’s not so much a matter of an old man and a young woman, or a married woman and a single man and other such classifications. Marital status or age is immaterial here. It’s the matter of two mortals trying to haul out their individuality through a reflection of similar needs in each other; the acceptance that such an unearthing of oneself is possible at any milestone in life and through our co-passengers in this journey, whether they boarded on the same route with us or not.

I was quite glad that the director here did not make a moral issue out of the entire predicament where the characters find themselves. When the man writes back to her asking if she would go to Bhutan with him, I quite anticipated a horrified Indian woman sentimentality surfacing that would go aghast at the idea of having crossed the line or even of its thought crossing her mind.
I silently rejoiced when she didn’t.

It is distressing to see people judge others without knowing what places in life they come from. What’s wrong with an old man finding a girlfriend? How is it morally a crime if a married woman finds solace in someone’s words outside the bounds of her matrimony that the dwindling threads of it fail to ensure? What right do we have to stop someone from getting happiness from whatever that redeems him unless we have better ways to ensuring it for him that pleases his hungry soul?

It’s a love deprived epoch that we live in,
Where money is easy to get and people difficult to find!
Where faces abound but familiarity fails!
Where we laugh too often but smile too less!

We live in a world where living it up is not thought as much as finishing it all up. Yes, the streaks of such ideas cross by even the sanest of minds. Like she said, we all find ourselves at some point or the other, ready to take the plunge but the depths to which we would have to fall, freezes our feet and numbs the mind. We continue where we are, allowing it to lead to a slow, excruciating death than a sudden, end-all one.

Little battles of little people. Millions of lunchboxes opening every day and so do millions of hearts. And day after day, without a second glance, with eyes riveted to some other priority each time, they come to a close. And the sun sets and the sun rises and the fan on the ceiling continues to sway.




16 comments:

Satya said...

Dear Suruchi,

I completely agree to each of your words... I did not like The Lunchbox as a movie. But I liked the concept... Those small moments and those little joys that we crave for..!

Anita Jeyan Sandeep said...

You just completely blew my mind ...you have such a rare quality of using the right words. It is such a delight to read you Suruchi... I am so much in awe of what you have written above...so true, so very true.

Blasphemous Aesthete said...

You know that is what writers are for, because everyone cannot see the irony unfold. And you know why you should write a little more here.

Perhaps, you should resume sending those tiny nothings to your husband again. But I wish he'd tell you on a fine morning how he loves it, or when on a day when you don't send it, he complains that you didn't.

We're running, afraid, as you said. But that is why we read others.

I haven't watched the movie, but I somehow know I'd love it. And I think I know what threads you might me connecting at this point, no, it is not one, not just one. :)

A beautiful review Suruchi!

Anita, in the previous comment just said it. You know the right words :D

Cheers,
Blasphemous Aesthete

Alka Gurha said...

You should write more often. It was a pleasure to read this post. I was nodding after every line penned so poetically and philosophically. I am going to read it again and soak in the beauty of your words.

Tanvi said...

Started reading reading ... but then stopped because I have not seem the movie yet. I will come back when I have done the later (:

Shady said...

You have grown as a writer though I never was nor I am an authority to judge your writings but I have seen them getting refined.
We write in same circumstances when we will sing and writing seems more civil than suddenly bursting into a song.
Experience the emotions and then let them flow out.
Keep writing and give us the pleasure of reading you more.

A Walk into the Woods said...

Hi Suruchi,

Life passes by and at a later date, we harbour so many regrets. It's not that we do not want to enjoy life and savour those silly romantic moments, but it's just that sometimes, things do not turn out as expected. You would be lucky if your hubby appreciated those little romantic gestures, as against rubbishing them off as childish or girlie crap.
So, we don't get to choose our happy moments. Rather, we make the best of what we have.
:)
Take care!
Good to see u back to blogging.

Red Handed said...

Good to see you back!!!
I am yet to watch the movie. Now I rally want to. :)

Sourav said...

:)

Anil Sood said...

We (with my wife) went to see Lunchbox on a Sunday morning (22 Sep)in our city at Fame Cinema. On reaching there, We were told Show has been canceled due to lack of audience. Felt very bad. Now came across this. Kudos to author of this blog. Wait for movie now on tv. Will love to read this again.

Anonymous said...

maan gye ustaad......dil se huh.....

Tanvi said...

I came back to read and I have to say I enjoyed this way more than the movie. Not because I thought the movie was not good. Coz it was. It was a good watch but postmortem is much more insightful. Although I do wish the screenplay was a tad bit more cooked. I wanted more interaction. More nuances. But anyhoo ... In the end it left me feeling - life is so hard to couple in the middle-class-India!

Incipiently I used to leave love notes for my husband too in the early years. I still would, except now he eats at the cafeteria - But I do leave him notes when I know he would come home before me! (;

I am glad that I found myself answering YES to all these questions. I do them all. I won't have regrets? Hopefully! Why do we realize we should have loved a little more, laughed a little longer, lived a little livelier only when it is no longer possible to do so?

I have to give credit to my husband for helping me live in the moment. Sigh! I haven't left SUCH a long comment in AGES!!! <3

Anjali said...

Suruchi !!!!
Damn you made my day with such a well written post.
Though I did not get a chance to see the movie (am waiting for it turn up on the Tv) but still I could very well frame up the whole story from your post.
And especially your thoughts, perceptions were something I found well hitting :)

viswa said...

You are a gifted artist!more than movie ,the inner meaning outplayed have been aptly brought out by you with yearnings one feels when watching the movie,I would suggest you to see the movie "good road" also and blog!
Vishwanathan

Haddock said...

You have said it right "Sad, that we want acceptance of the society for every bloody thing. "
We try to do things to please the society and in the bargain make life miserable.
As for the movie, yes its a should see and will see for me.
Like you said a couple of hours on the big screen forces you to send your brain cells for a little jog. I too don't write movie reviews, but the movies, Peepli Live, English Vinglish and Spielberg's Tintin made me write about them.

Narayani Karthik said...

Beautiful review with an even more beautiful insight.....How come I missed reading your blog? And now, am going to keep a tab on your page! Keep those posts coming!

Cheers & God bless...!!

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