Tuesday, 10 May 2011

I Just Wanna Live While I'm Alive

I’m still recovering from what was probably the busiest weekend I’ve EVER had at work. 8-9 hours of dashing around the hotel at a somewhere between brisk walk and gentle jog pace (we’re talking averages here, I have been known to sprint on occasion) is probably more aerobic exercise than most people take in a year. Now that summer is nigh tourists are flocking into London in droves – and it’s always cheaper to stay just outside the city than in so we’re almost always fully booked. But then it is groups like these that keep girls like me in the job (and out of nightmarish student debt) so I can hardly complain. It’s not so bad either when people are polite and patient rather than demanding and uptight, we’re definitely more inclined to provide them with top-class service. I quite enjoyed looking after the Indian tour group that came in from Mumbai – warm, kind and redolent of India in every way possible. I didn’t realise how much I was missing it until now – it’s been two long years. Surprisingly, tickets over summer aren’t half as expensive as I’d expected so I think I might take my chances and visit in August, during the rains...

I seem to be getting ‘India-sick’ pretty oft of late, might offer some explanation for my recent Bollywood film binges? For a few years my attraction waned (second-rate acting, repetitive story lines and tediously long at 3 hours sometimes) but for an industry that churns out over 1000 films per year, there is of course the odd diamond among the stones, if you just care to search a little. “3 Idiots” is one such gem. It tells the tale of Rancho who wants to fight an oppressive education system that puts more emphasis on achieving grades than on imparting knowledge – it probably sounds a little bland but I assure you it is far from. Complete with a very “filmi” love story, a wedding that’s crashed and a funeral that’s trashed, I would definitely recommend a watch (I have it taped on the V+ box, probably watch it more often than I should).

Being completely confined to books, revision, work, more books and more revision, most of my thoughts are clearly tending towards escaping (India, Sweden, Bollywood) this boring routine! The whole month looks set to be a drag (except maybe Thursday & Friday this week) and I just CANT WAIT TO BE FREE from exams. Some other thoughts bobbling around this slightly bored brain...

I don’t know if it’s possible to “miss” a place having spent only a few days there so I’m going to go with the word “reminisce” instead. And reminiscing I am, about some wonderful days spent in Stockholm. The city has an allure very different from London; it’s sensuous rather than sensational, calm rather than crazy and very ‘bite-size’ with none of the sprawling busyness that resides with London. It’s compact (take a look at the size of their metro if you don’t believe me), clean(er than you can EVER imagine) and cool(the air feels as fresh as in the countryside). I’ve only seen it in the deepest winter (-15 degrees if you want precision) but I can imagine it’s just as beautiful in the summer with its open waterways and pale coral building facades. It seems unlikely I’ll be going there anytime soon but it sure made a place in my heart very, very fast. (Click on the collage below, you can zoom in pretty close.)

As my last post explained I’m acutely aware of time, that I’m not enjoying, utilising or maximising, passing before my eyes. Life has changed but rather than yearning for what I had, I have to welcome what will come. Happiness is after all, making to most of now, here. It’s mowing the lawn for mum and watching her pad around barefoot in the garden. It’s making potato gratin and watching dad demolish with delight. It’s remembering snatched moments of our childhood with my brother and gossiping with my best girls. Happiness is comfort eating with Rob,talking to my grandma on the phone and playing with my adorable little neighbour, Christian. It's cooking and travelling, shopping and working. Happiness is nothing more than being thankful for what we have. Nothing more.


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