To Shillong, in the abode of the clouds

Last October, I went for a trip to Shillong. This was my first travel to the north-east and I couldn't think of a better way to start.
From Kolkata, I flew to Guwahati, spent about a day checking out the sights and sounds of the city, with the plan of traveling up to Shillong by road the following day.

Evening in Guwahati: Sunset over the storied Brahmaputra river. Misty blue hues, the glistening silver of the waters and the lengthening shadows made for a magical sight indeed.

En route to Shillong: A 3.5 hour ride. Greeted by blue autumnal skies, verdant green hills, great roads and copious amounts of unadulterated, fresh air.

Day 1 in Shillong: Relishing the beauty of this picturesque town nestled in the hills.
The first stop was the Shillong View Point, a particular area within the Air Force base, which is open to the public and offers spectacular views of the rolling hills around and the city of Shillong spread out in the foothills.

Next stop: Elephant Falls - The unique beauty …

Revisiting the Pachelbel Canon

I keep falling in love with the Pachelbel Canon over and over again. And as I do, I keep on writing about it - in an effort, to try and express, to the best of my meager abilities, how this piece of music continues to envelop and embrace my life through crests and troughs. 
There's such an enchanting and ethereal quality to it; a sense of timelessness, of everlasting beauty. No wonder that artistes over generations and decades have continued to deliver such hauntingly beautiful renditions.
'Nostalgia', 'wistfulness', 'longing' are some of the words that come close to describing my emotions while listening to the canon. In a strange way, that only great music can, it even makes sadness less heavy and darkness less oppressive.
This mesmerizing performance (a variation on the canon) by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra is my current favorite. Have a listen. :)

'Journey' to 'Paradise' through music

You always remember the moment when you discovered a song. When the lyrics first spoke to you, or they spoke about you. It is the beginning of a kinship, an unspoken bond, a 'private emotion'.
It is then you realize that you are no longer alone in your thoughts. Someone, somewhere has navigated through the same whirlpool of emotions, or has, at least, recognized the turbulence.
And they have expressed it eloquently and it is in their expressions that one finds much-needed comfort and succour. 

These songs have played a very important role at crucial junctures in my life. They have given me hope and strength. They have taught me that life is too precious to wallow in misery and self-pity, and consequently lose sight of the adventures that present itself at every turn, no matter how small.

Journey - Don't Stop Believin'
 "Just a small town girl
Livin' in a lonely world
She took the midnight train goin' anywhere
Just a city boy
Born and raised in south Detroit
He …

The Call of the Wilderpeople

I'm not a movie watcher. I'm a movie lover. I don't leave the cinematic moments behind in the darkness of an empty theater. I carry them out with me, safely ensconced in a secret nook of my heart. Films sustain me, they carry me through crests and troughs, through ebbs and tides, through laughter and tears.

One such recent experience was watching 'The Hunt for the Wilderpeople'. To me, it is undoubtedly one of the most stunningly beautiful, uproariously funny and deeply moving films ever. If the sole purpose of cinema is to bring us joy, then it can't get any better than this little gem from Down Under. As a friend described it perfectly, it is the 'It's A Wonderful Life' of our times. High praise, but richly deserved. Rarely does a film bring so much happiness and positivity, it lifts up the spirits like none other.
It helped me pick up the pieces after a personal trauma, it made me happy, hopeful, more willing to embrace life. So much so that watc…

Someday you will be old enough to read fairy tales again

C.S Lewis's movingly beautiful dedication of 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' to his god daughter...

"My Dear Lucy,

I wrote this story for you, but when I began it I had not realized that girls grow quicker than books. As a result you are already too old for fairy tales, and by the time it is printed and bound you will be older still. But some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again. You can then take it down from some upper shelf, dust it, and tell me what you think of it. I shall probably be too deaf to hear, and too old to understand a word you say but I shall still be,

your affectionate Godfather,
C. S. Lewis."

‘Someday’ – When Europe called