Not too many summers ago, I graduated with honours, as one does in England, as one should, to the happy nods of sideway relief in India. Top university, top degree. However inflated as I was with this achievement, I usurped it of its vanity to make way for a slightly brighter shade of glory-graduate job: leading bank, handsome pay, set in the hedonism of London. It was to be the first of many wonderful mistakes. Neil Gaiman did say, “Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make your mistakes next year and forever” and I suppose the wonder was for me not to realize then that it was in fact a beautiful mistake to make. It’s hard for me to know just now whether the etymology of this intense desire to change, do something and really live before I was moulded into the habit of an assembly lined life, was in fact born of vocational distaste or entirely of itself. I lean, bone weight and all, towards the latter.
Soon it was two years hence-through moon-juried nights of waking agitation, and restlessness that shrouded daylight with grey- a far from impossible feat to achieve in England, I notice. I could feel, all around me, the crowded lanes of parked lives. Some waited for the rains to clear, while some waited for the roads to be signposted, and of course some simply waited. Far from 80 or senility, I had already begun to mother the truth of life being short, and of our chances at making it matter being singularly denominated. The Holstee Manifesto came knocking on my wall. Knowing at once that it was silly to think so, and with bipolar dexterity thinking exactly that, a dual prowess that I have come to master in this short life, I thought to myself, every morning and fading night, that I wanted to do something with this life. I wanted to create, and create change, and really, foremost, before anything else, I wanted to begin.
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