A conversation with Space #1

Wrote this a couple of nights back. I’m sort of going through one of my weird ‘poetic’ phases. Not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.

So brace yourselves for more of these in the coming days.

Hope you’re all well. And to my American followers, Happy 4th of July!

Into the Wild

After graduating in May 1990, Christopher McCandless left his home and all of his material possession for a trip across America. He ‘literally’ burnt all of his money, left his car and lived off the road for two years and walked into Alaska in April 1992.

A lot of people criticize Christopher and lambaste the public for portraying him as a hero. They call him reckless, inconsiderate and even narcissistic.

I could write an entire book about how all these claims are utterly and fallaciously wrong.

The boy was a bright and active student. He did well in class. He read good, inspiring books. He was agile, dynamic and friendly. He even made sure he graduated before he left; hence showing awareness so as to abide by his filial duties before reaching out to his calling. How can people say he was reckless?

The boy carried no IDs, no money, no possession and craved to be off the radar. And they say he wanted ‘popularity?’ If he wanted fame, he would’ve made sure people knew where he was.

Understand, that there must be something more persuasive than ‘fame’ to lure a boy with a bright future to abandon his affluent life and walk into nothingness. There was something more than that. 

Chris McCandless

Real picture of Christopher in Alaska at an abandoned bus where he took refuge.

Even though he died around September, he still scrambled and survived Alaska for 3 months, unguided and alone. He was caught by police authorities several times, and he still managed to escape without jail only by persuasive talking.

And they say he wasn’t smart. 

They say Chris had no idea what he was doing. I say, chances are, he knew EXACTLY what he was doing. He was not some hopeless romantic who got infatuated with some book and abandoned his affluent home. He was aware that he might end up dead. He knew the risks involved. He knew that there was a price to pay.

The reason I cannot stop being utterly fascinated with Chris is that I completely understand why he did it. I cannot put it to words, but I know how he felt, what drove him to take the perilous step. What coaxed him to give everything up, to leave them all behind and willingly walk away. I understand how claustrophobic he felt among people. I understand he was mad with the world. I know he was looking for an escape. I know he wanted peace. If I had more guts and less excuses, I would do something exactly like him.

I know what it’s like to live with a mind that won’t ever shut up. 

He certainly took some wrong decisions, and there are opinions of his where I greatly disagree, but I still admire and sort of pity him. Even empathize with him. He is exactly the kind of person I could sit and talk with for hours. The people he spent time with during his escapade said that the boy could talk and talk about the things that mattered. He would listen to anything that was new to him. He had a willingness to learn. A never quenching curiosity.

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He was loved and missed by everyone he met during his travel. He made an impression on every  body. All of them said that the boy was special, that there was something unique about him.

In September 1992, his decomposed body was found by a party of moose hunters.

Wherever he is right now, I only hope he found the peace he was looking for.

I’ve met a lot of people in various groups who read Into the Wild and were rendered speechless. I really urge you to read it. Please. It’s going to change your perspective regarding a lot of things. And if you do manage to read it, please send me an email. I long to discuss this book with someone.

Until then.

Alexander Supertramp, in our hearts forever.

Love always,

Your blogger.

One Last Effort

There is so much going on right now. I tip-toe silently trying to slide pass through all the energy inside. A moment ago I too was standing amidst all the chatter and hysterics. But very soon like I forbode, it started to consume me.
The song, the laugh, the drink, the people and their heated words uttered so fast I can barely make any sense of it. I can hear everything around me but I cannot understand a thing. I glance around in that crowd, where could I possibly go? What do I do?

I’m overwhelmed. I don’t do well in crowds and meaningless conversations. I’ve always loved the quiet, always preferred it. Always been fascinated with things I shouldn’t be fascinated with. I look around again, anxious.  A group erupts in laughter, a stout robust man quaffs down his entire drink and quizzically inquires for more.
A woman subtly adjusts the straps of her dress.
A man nervously strokes his tie, this is a deal he cannot miss.
The waiter stands patiently, waiting for them to finish their drinks, so that he may be done for the day.
The singer sings in all her melody, while no one is listening and she’s too drunk to notice.
I gulp in anticipation though I do not know of what.

I see a door straight down the hallway, festooned with ribbons and glitter. I open the door quietly, just enough for me to slip through; and I run. I run as fast as I can storming past the hallway, making conversations pause and a couple of heads follow my trail.

I reach a garden and my toes are bruised but I don’t feel any pain. The quiet is comforting and the cold seems like a friend. I lean against a wall and slam on the ground, breathing heavily and staring into the night. My hair is a travesty and sweat seeps through my make-up.

By now I only hear soft music playing somewhere far. Far enough to not be intelligible and I sit there barefoot, my head resting against the wall and every deep breath pushing hot air through the fog.
I see small yellow fairy-lights carefully hung over the bushes. I’ve always loved lights, you know. But not the superfluous, exaggerated, colorful ones. But the quiet, yellow and warm ones.

I pick myself up and make my way to the pool. The calm, unperturbed surface speaks to me. Glaring at the water I find peace. I’m enticed by how deep it might be. So deep that they cannot ever find me. So deep that the world fails to follow my trail and all that consumes me washes away inside it.
So I jump.

I jump in the water and let go. Bubbles of air escape my body as I close my eyes and allow myself to sink. As low as I can. As deep as the waters may allow me.
I think of everything that overwhelmes me, everything that makes me anxious and I feel it leave my body.
Everything that makes me hold on to things, everything that makes me think, it’s slowly going away as the water fills my body and it swells and crashes the bottom.

And in my final moments I see those lights. Though they don’t appear little anymore. The water makes them glow like blazing balls of fire, spreading their warm glow over me, maybe trying one last time to bring me comfort. In one last effort, I smile and bid them farewell.

Until I start floating on the surface.

May The Force Be With You

“For a wound to completely heal,
You have to stop touching it.”

Lately, I have made a point to read a lot of ‘self-discovery’ books. For what I think has been a long spell of doubts, insecurities, depression and uninvited solitude I think this proved to be a major change in the monotony that was slowly engulfing me.

I tried several ways to abate everything trying to make me bitter towards life. I tried talking about it but every time I did, I always felt misunderstood. Almost like no one was getting what I was trying to say or worst of all, no one seemed very interested to listen. It’s not their fault, really.

There are many things, broadly speaking, that contribute to this feeling of abandonment. Work, stress, doubts, heartbreak, someone else you think is better off than you and many more.

I don’t quite know how it happened, but right in the middle of this spell of intense grief and guilt I had a sense of self-actualization.

Like some divine light had befallen me and made me see the truly confident and exuberant self that I once was. And I felt that in this course of leaving everything behind, I left her as well. People abruptly ask me on phone calls, “You sound very different. Is something wrong?”

I summon up the courage to narrate, but fall short of the right words.

“What? I don’t think so!” is what I usually come up with.

How do you explain people what’s wrong when you’re trying to understand that yourself? The answer is, you don’t. There’s no point. You pick yourself up, even when your legs shake and you shiver with cold and you’re short of breath, you look straight ahead and you walk. That’s what you do. How do you intend to surf if you don’t plan to enter the water?

I began reading with ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ by Elizabeth Gilbert. This book was the perfect start. If it taught me one thing, it was to never lose faith in yourself. Be kind, be humble and don’t be your worst critic. Be patient with everything around you, especially you. Patience. Because it took Elizabeth two years of intense traveling and meditation to regain her lost sense of self-esteem. It didn’t happen overnight.

It is mostly when we’re on the brink of catastrophe when we either open our eyes and begin to construct the path we’re deemed to travel or we take a step back and prefer to lull in the protection of the happy past. The latter contributing little to our future.

So I made a point not do that to myself. I sought to love myself enough to not be fair to who I am. Gain strength by reading books of people who broke the walls and marched through life as indomitable as they could ever get. I decided to change my perspective and open up to whatever changes happening around me. As they sure are leading me somewhere I am still very unwise to see.

Am I afraid? Yes.
Do I still have doubts? Absolutely.
Do I have a plan? I’m working on it.

I guess up until now I considered myself cherished enough to not have to go through the various downfalls in life. Guess what? It happens to everybody.

If there’s anyone reading this who might be going through a hard time, I hope you’re able to find the hope you’ve been looking for.  All it takes is a seed to fall on the ground, once it does, all the forces start conspiring to help it grow into a prolific tree.

So go ahead, fall. Fall and allow the forces to guide you towards the path you’re meant to travel.

Love always,
This blogger.