Drumrolls Pleaseeeeeee…I present to you the first guest post…by Aneela
But before that,the reason why I asked Aneela..
When I first arrived in Melbourne,I was so lonely.I didn’t know anybody,except a couple from our initial married life..but they were busy with their life.I commented on Aneela’s blog and she got in touch with me,right away..and after a few failed attempts to meet,we ended up meeting in the city.You remember that Aneela?we had a nice time.But thats not the reason why she is so special to me.Aneela and G-man generously included us in their holiday plans with friends,making us feel more comfortable in a new place.If it wasn’t her calls and pep talk,I would have gone mad because this move was stressful in more ways than one. If I like/love Melbourne today,this woman has a major role to play!
Now,without further ado,here’s what Aneela has to say-
When Trishna requested me to come up with a guest post on How to Stay Happy, it was very difficult to reply to her email what with all the laughter in the background. The sound of laughter was from close family and friends who know all too well about my Naina Barse Rhim Jhim Rhim Jhim avatar and who over the years have marvelled over my Fine Art of Getting Into a Funk. The Pursuit of Happiness and to get out of this funk has been a non-stop battle for me over the years with the emphasis on as Will Smith’s character reminds us on the very act of pursuit.
So what have I learnt over the years? I have been told that Happiness is an Aberration, as in sorry for the brief lull in transmission, normal programming will resume soon. I was also exposed to the phir hum khush hoaayengey (And then We will be Happy and How can We be Happy? ) school of thought which is basically the anti-thesis of We Will Overcome declaring as it does that Life is an Endless game of snake and ladders and one can only be Happy in Heaven. There is also some stuff about endless rivers of wine and a full on“ may tully hogayee” program but that will come later
What have I done in the pursuit of happiness? This has ranged from the very Organized (As a teenager I would collect clippings of “happy things” –shades of Amelie. Knowing as you all do about how obsessive compulsive I am and the disease to “control” things, you will not be surprised to discover that I filed this shoe box collection in categories of “newspaper clippings about political boo boos”, “cartoons”, and “random funny stuff” . These were later graded leaving the really funny A Grade stuff for really depressing days and the relatively mediocre for an ordinary day …Im pretty sure my mother threw all that out when I moved on to uni and the world will never know my own version of chicken soup for the soul),
to the Imaginative (for a whole month I watched a Govinda starrer every evening, I was inspired by a woman who laughed her way through cartoons and cured her cancer. Don’t know about my chronic cold and air of gloom and doom but it sure cured my video rental guy’s blues who skipped happily all the way to the bank)
and the down right Silly (when disappointed by a particular election result I swore off reading op/eds and watching news programmes for a while).
My mother by the way has always been a firm believer of walking away your woes. I will tell her about a colleague who is bi-polar and struggling with meeting work deadlines and she will say nonsense, she needs loads of fresh air, get her out and about. I will tell her about a mysterious mole and she will query me about the last time I was out of the house in recent days. If it was not a question of her being a twinkle in her dad’s eye during the particular period I would have questioned her regarding advising Gandhi and his Salt Walk to Freedom.
And one fine day I discovered what our grand mothers were trying to tell us all along as they recited tales about the parrot which held the life of the djinn. Such a biiiggg giant and the puny prince could slay him by twisting the neck of the parrot (yikes!!). Quick phone call- to- our- local- RSPCA moment aside what our grand mothers were telling us were to search within us for our strength, our happiness rather than depending on The Relationship, That Handbag or This Job to do the task for us. Guys and girls will come and go, the child prodigy you hoped to raise will continue to stick his finger up his nose and ask Whattdatt? and our political leaders will continue to mess things up royally. But you dear reader can continue to be Defiantly Happy if you have learnt to be comfortable in your own company (a trait my dear partner-in-crime has taught me…to be an Indian with a Pakistani wife and an Australian son, a lesser soul would have renewed his life insurance policy twice over)
Next step deconstructing the cautionary note in the fairy tale of not looking back lest you turn to stone (and whats the happiness in that?). Seriously these old dames knew a thing or two.
Thanks Aneela,for making Melbourne feel like home & Thanks for writing this post 🙂