Piya Milan Chowk

‘Bhai, PMC mein milna theeke na?’ translates into Brother, meet me at the junction where lovers meet.

And where is this PMC? Well its at the center of my college. And its like the cerebrum of all activity. Its a roundabout before the Admin block which is where all the main college-streets lead to (in some way or the other). And that’s where friends were made, watchmen slept, meetings were held, people were eyed, Girls’ Hostel Buses were parked etcetera.

We were about five thousand students belonging to more than a dozen departments. And PMC was where we’d gather. There were other places – the BBC (Basketball court), the LTC (Lawn tennis court which was actually a chewed-out clay court), Coffee-shop (which is just a tiny stall which sold instant-coffee and junk food to meet varying collegiate needs), Back-Gate (which qualifies to be an adda) and the canteen (where the ground-floor was dedicated to those who actually ate and the first-floor mostly had people who had nowhere else to go and didn’t want to run into the faculty). Oh we did have a library but it wasn’t such a common meeting place unless and until you planned to study (or sleep) in the Annex.

I wonder why I’m writing about it today. Is it because half of the people I met there (definitely not as piyas) have drifted to faraway continents or are in the process to do so? Is it because I will never forget the day my Dad and I walked into the College (well, the never-ending infinity road starting from the main-gate directly leads you to …no reward for guessing…the PMC) and I had finally realised that my twelve years of education led me to this place. Ah, that kid then. Or maybe the pictures clicked there on various ethnic days will never be clicked again (or found – I’m sure I’ve lost most of them in miscellaneous drives), the mosquito-filled evenings we’ve spent waiting for the second bus to pick us up or the fountain that worked only once in a blue moon with its colorful lights. I’m sure most people graduated even without seeing it in all its glory due to its rare usage. Or perhaps I yearn to walk under the ever-spreading canopy of the Umbrella Thorn Trees (at least that’s what I called them and fooled my friends for four long years).

I’ll never meet Aryan in his baggy clothes waiting to meet us whenever he dropped by college. I’ll never see the cute-guys (like one out of five) play basket-ball in the court across the road. I’ll never walk by the juniors waiting for the bus with my troupe of cackling monkey-friends who were probably laughing at some seriously retard joke I must have cracked. I’ll never see Komi fly his balsa wood planes with his team there. I’ll never get to sit there with my friends as we’d see daylight turn to dusk as we’d wait for something else. I’ll never ask the auto-wallah to take a left from PMC to reach my departments, I’ll never run by it with arms-full of sheets with my classmates and I’ll probably never stand in a sari with my two best friends, Rhea and Mouli, clicking our last picture together before our final speeches on behalf of our departments. Ah PMC did hold a lot of meaning in its own way. I will never know why it was named so but I think I’ll never forget the happiness it brought on my face when my friends and I would decide to meet up there to hatch some new craziness after college.

Arrividerci SIT and its survivors.




I’m in Chennai

Enslaved by internet speed and storage-space in mobile phones and devices such. That’s what life has come to. Office got over a while ago but here I am waiting for In Which Annie Gives… to buffer. Yes, that’s what its come to.

So, I thought I’ll visit the space I’ve been meaning to but not getting time (mind frame, actually) to attend to. There’s 8 hours of office and two hours of travel along with 7 hours of sleep. To add to it I joined a short play with well-meaning friends some of whom are serious thespians and actors. I’m just learning, really – experiencing, rather. I was always drawn to the theatre- well, now I’ll really get to know if I make the cut or whether theatre makes the cut for me.

Well if you happen to be in Chennai (or live here) – come catch us live at 7pm  (be there on time because we perform first) – Alliance Francaise, Nungambakkam. Its made with love, really – the other kind, you know. It has a lot of laughter and goof-ups, bajjis and lemon tea behind this play being performed. For me, maybe because of the people I’ve been around with – architects and writers (of sorts) – the Process is always more meaningful than the end. Well that’s what I believe in, for now, because I haven’t really completed anything of importance. Perhaps if I ever get a project (writing, art, audio or whatever) done – I’ll tell you.

Damn, the internet is slow. I’m still here. The office is almost empty.

Well, I hope to see you at the play should you drop by – do say hi. And, I miss my leisurely days, really. And I long  to go back to my hostel-mates and do the things we used to do. I miss my single-bed and the best room-mate, ever who loves cats, books and strangeness alike. We could exist parallel-y, peacefully and interact at a comfortable wavelength without any awkwardness and in these times, that a real miracle, you know. If you happen to read this : I miss you Gurangutan and all our erratic, crazy and lovely times. Making videos, playing with Peter, walking walking walking, eating together, watching favorite movies. You will be my best friend forever – without definition. I hope we stay in touch like our mothers and their best friend in college did. I hope to come there and meet your cats and little brother – go with you to all the places you mentioned. Someday. I have another set of special friends apart from my classmates – the Chicchar Gang. No, I will not translate. Its best left like that. They hailed from Meghalaya, Ranchi and Jamshedpur. And they were my closest friends by the end. I can’t even start telling you our stories. Because, well, not all of them are mine to tell.

Ah, well, Dad inquired why I’m still in office. And its getting dark outside. I must leave now and leave you with patchwork-memories.


Sunday Serve

The Classmates. L-R: Myself, Jois, Hrishi and Priyo

This officially marks that its been two weeks since Joining Date. The rooms are set, more or less and we’re getting used to the week’s grind of Design, Urban Planning, Landscape and Interior design plus the electives. Some major work this semester because we are in the final semesters of Collegiate education. Next year is all practical-real-time work . There are other things like laundry and maintenance that also need your attention unless you like living like Shrek, that is. Entertainment comes in diluted forms of watching movies (Malayalam being my Choice of The Month) or just talking to friends sitting on stairs. Whatsapp consumes far too much time than I can spare. Hostel lunch during the weekends suck but the rare weekday lunch of ladies fingers and potatoes and the Friday idli-vada-sambhar comfort us enough to let the issue go. 

Just last Sunday we were all celebrating my classmate’s birthday in CCD and then we drove up to DD Hills which was a blissful experience. We sat there on huge boulders until the sun set, the clouds rolled by drizzling on us and the stars came up. We had tea in a stall while driving down; dinner at a famous restaurant in Khyatsandra before getting dropped at the Hostel almost at Curfew hour. I can’t believe its been a week, since that.

I simply don’t understand how Sunday rushed by. I remember waking up at around 5AM, thanks to mosquitoes (someone left the door open the previous evening) and replying to some message. I thought I’ll just sleep a little bit more and suddenly its 8:41AM and we rush for breakfast.

I spoke to The Parents and read a few blog posts by friends listening to Teena Marie…and suddenly my classmate enters and she’s like, ‘Let’s go for lunch.’ Its 12:27. Though yes, I got to read some great blogs. Today I focused on Ex-army and Fauji wives’ tales : Aditi Mathur and Vikram Karve Sir. And of course, Farooq-Sreesha-Shyvish and my other Indiblogger mates’ blogs. I honestly wish I read more. Arundhati Roy is staring at me from my table, ‘You use my cover as background for new ear-rings for Instagram but you can’t read a dozen pages a day from me!’

The iPod is charged so say hello to songs from the yester-years of my life. I can’t get over The Science of Sleep’s haunting background score.

I mean, are you KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW? We get one day to recoop and even that goes by so quick. I’m already worried about pending assignments and submissions. Saavu addikeraanga pa! I just pat myself for being alive. Oh and did I tell you, I still have a bit of laundry left and there’s oil in my hair that needs washing off? Oh and we have some NASA work to tend to, too. Oh and did I tell you I was writing poetry until 2AM. What is up with me?

Hoping we get things done on time. I’ve still not watched Irrfan Khan’s AIB video that’s making the rounds.

ANYWAY. Hope you had a great week. And will have a nice one, too. Send some love. I could really do with oodles of it.

Interesting Title

I'm wearing the black tee if you can see me looking all enthu-cutlet when I'm actually a nervous wreck doing breathing exercises in my head. Shanti.
I’m wearing the black tee if you can see me looking all enthu-cutlet when I’m actually a nervous wreck doing breathing exercises in my head. Shanti.

I have enough work to fill the entire Sankey Tank but I will sit before my laptop reading blogs; thinking of tweets to make people laugh; getting lost in BuzzFeed; worrying about work et all. And honestly, I hope Dad is not reading this because he will not be too happy to see me chilling in blogosphere when I told him I’m going to be taking rest when I’m not pounding away in the grounds or working on college-stuff.

So today, we had this Departmental Exhibition and Quiz along with a Presentation by the Eighth semester students on their projects for Ethos and Saint Gobain’s joint venture. I still remember sitting in the middle row, watching my seniors battle it out to win the quiz and wonder how they managed it. And suddenly, a year later, there I was writing the preliminary test for the same quiz’s next edition. I kinda knew my team comprising of a senior Sahaana (humblest ever), my hyper self and Faizu, my junior, could make it through the Qualifiers but then that was just about it. We entered the top six of about thirty something teams and then my seat caught fire.

Sitting before an entire department of students of which 120 of them are your juniors, is a bit nerve-racking because you’ve officially signed up to make a fool out of yourself if you go too wrong. Anyway, one by one as the rounds passed by I learnt that I do retain a lot even post exams and that reading helps a LOT. And so does inquisitiveness. All those hours I spent reading Architectural articles or browsing through projects did not go in vain. Ha! Okay enough showing off. My senior was pretty amazing, too. And so was Faizu for her level. As a junior you are bound to get dazed by all that information. When we were declared, I was euphoric. I get competitive, a little more than I should, at times. I’m flawed, I’m human. Go!

After the excitement started washing down I realized life moves on and that we have design tomorrow so we began work.

Sixth semester began like two weeks ago and we’ve already given submissions. You can imagine the pace at which we are progressing. I wish sleep was optional because I find it to be a hindrance in my work-schedule. I’m sure others will agree. Speaking like a workaholic, aren’t I? I wish.

Also, because today was so Happening, I woke up to my first crush’s Engagement pictures. God, am I public about such things. But I’ve grown since then and now it doesn’t matter. So anyway, he’s getting married at 23 and how adorable the couple is. It was like a bell ringing in my head warning me to Not pay attention to frills, fancies and crushes as well, temporary they are. In an ideal world, great things happen. But for us crazy ones, everything has its own way of manifesting in our life, don’t you think?

I bought strawberries the other day for forty bucks. Heavenly they were. Tomorrow, grapes. There are two oranges lying on my table waiting for attention but I’m actively ignoring them. Why? I wonder myself. 

In other news, I’m absolutely tired of BJP vs AAP tweets. What’s congress doing midst all the drama? I don’t really care. Not like I don’t care about the nation’s politics. I’ve just had enough of it through all feeds. Somewhere in between the Government is frying the All India Bakchod Roast, also. Like, seriously? 

My short stay in Bengaluru has inspired me to start watching Rugrats again. How many of you remember our old Nickelodeon Serials and all? Revisiting some classics through slow hostel wi-fi when Architecture permits.

Well that’s today’s quick update. Task for you : to let me know if your life has too many strings, too? 

And if you’re looking to do something: Watch 90’s TV Ads from India. So entertaining, oh God!


Burrrahh! It’s funny. Really. Read it. Like, Now.

 Why, I ask why? Why should I put up a title that makes sense. Why should I endure the #ouijamovie ‘s  trailer before watching ||superwoman|| ? YouTube, hope you’re listening (reading).

Anyway, as if title dekh liya toh people will come running to read the rest of it like kids towards a cotton candy stall. So, we’ve had this really long (5 days) holiday. And the only constructive things I’ve done are…do my laundry (50%); run 300m; bought fruits; cleaned my room…and that’s just about it. And we have exams coming up on the 13th…next week, if you don’t want to check the date. But here I am, chooosing my jolly rancher sitting on my bed (ever since I put the new white-rajasthani sheets, I’m loving it more) and watching YouTube videos. Thank you college for the slow yet whatever WiFi. Tussi great ho (conditions apply)

You know, just recently I learned this fact: You can use only one exclamation mark (!) per 100 words. Leh, I can’t use it again now. So, my question is, to all those English professors (who are frowning upon my slang and grammatical errors) …what about the bracket usage? Because I have so much of sarcasm, extra notes, explanations, etc:- to add to my text. Plain sentences are too mainstream. Like Jane Austen books. My drama is of a totally different genre, you see. Can’t be mixed with lay-language. So, my new hostel is pretty cool with this sweet manager (I used to call her warden and by-mistake repeated it while talking to the Real Warden on the phone and bloody hell, he go pissed) who is stern yet nice to that ONE odd good girl (meaning : me). The others are toh aiwayi putting lipstick and wearing hot dresses and enjoying a nightlife while I play Sims 3 with All the expansion packs, mind you. So she’s like accepting all their fake letters (I write most of them) of going home, going to a localite’s birthday dinner; going for competitions. All bullshit. Bwahahaha. Anyway…she, the maids, cooks and few other girls are the only people in the hostel and I’m not saying its boring. The food is actually sexy, now. To all those chics who went off home: we are happy. Blah! Okay, no ranting. So yeah, that’s how it is. The only respite is the Back Gate. It’s actually a road. It’s the back gate of the most popular college in the *town* (where I study, not showing off….really…or am I?) where you have one Megamart; hundreds of fruit-juice stalls because, you know, kids need their Juju. And More: Departmental Store (Charges so much tax I’d like to sew them but they supply fresh fruits so what can I do?); stationery shops; eateries where you can splurge and become fat; tea-shops (we all know what boys do there); bakeries (different bakeries have their specialty: egg-puff; samosa bun, cream-bun, cigarettes, milkshake, sandwiches and whatever); there is this lovely Hot Chips shop where you get such awesome chips of all kind. I want to be a millionaire just to shop to my heart’s content there. And so that’s where we other  people who didn’t go home (because we are too cool for that, yeah right :/) socialize.

Yesterday I met my friend there after like, ages. He has a great voice and can sing Only Hope so good. Anyway, his name is Zain just like that 1D guy. So, in the beginning, when the two of us got selected for the Music Club (or whatever its called) the seniors typed his name as Zain Malik with mine and it was posted EVERYWHERE. Like, seriously. And the reason could have been me.

Jokes apart, I still have 2 buckets of clothes to wash. And I’m praying to all my Gods that the one’s that give off colour have not ruined my good-expensive ones, already. If that happens, I swear to God, I’ll kill myself. No, I’ll break something. No, I’ll skip lunch. No, wait, I’ll just wash my face.

Okay, then, I’m trying to write up short stuff for my Travelogue (which only God knows when I’ll publish). And then I have some more poetry. I wrote this one for an Arjun-Kapoor look-alike with a better nose, less bulk, cooler calf-muscles and …okay I’ll stop drooling…who I saw (not met) in a Converse store where I was struggling with a food baby (Remind me to tell you what it is, later) and Raya…actually Rhea (my roomie) was checking out shoes. I never…ever…never…buy branded sheez without my Dad. Like never. Because, well, he pays for it, so. I know, sounds so spoiled-bratish. Do not judge me. You’ll come to know the reality when you see me begging and embarrassing him in the store for a Marie Claire with 60% off (still costs Rs. 1280) or with a pile of books at Landmark…and he’ll be like, ‘This is my last warning. You have two minutes to replace them and leave.’ Yeah, that’s him. Typical ex-army.

And y’all think we Fauji-brats are so cool. Its only those hot ones with Dads too busy para-gliding to notice their kids poofing money in Connaught Place. And these kids post all these coolbeans pics from Andaman and Leh. And I’m like, I went there too. But my poses made me delete the pics. Anyway. Stuff happens. You just pop in a Pudin Hara and let it go.

PS: Everything above was to make you laugh or die. No offence intended. Hope you Enjaaaid.Leave a comment And hit that like so I know I’m not talking to myself, pervs, aliens or well, bots.