Hidden Order

One of the easily recognizable separators between the US and India is the sense of order versus chaos.  But sometimes — and more often — chaos contains things of immense beauty:

  • Husks of corn scattered upon the sidewalk form a pattern of bindi-shaped yellow-green droplets
  • A ragged old man scratching away at peeling paint upon an old building, oblivious to the world
  • A boy  with a small smile on his face carrying a cloudy, plastic bottle filled with a liquid that could be tea, oil, or ambrosia.

The End of S——

Burdened by the weight of expectation of a garlic bagel breakfast sandwich (tomato, onion, cheese and bacon), I finally made to 14th and R last weekend for a blissful morning at Sparky’s.  I had been in DC for almost two weeks, but had traveled back home the previous weekend and because of training didn’t have the opportunity to spend a morning at one of my favorite DC haunts.  But… Continue reading →

Why I Write

Reading Ryszard Kapuscinski’s Travels with Herodotus (which I hope to review here later) has brought me back to an age-old question: Why do I write?  Kapuscinski connects Herodotus’ desire to write his Histories with the need to preserve memory — of cultures, and peoples, events, and experiences.  Today, unlike in Herodotus’ time, we have institutions such as universities, libraries, books, and the Internet to preserve these memories for us.  All the things that we learn are from those memories that recite histories of peoples.  These histories were originally passed on by word of mouth, and story, and believed to be true because they came from our ancestors.

For me, though, that still didn’t answer the question of why I write.  Because what disturbs me is the feeling that I write because I have no history.  Or said another way: I write to create my history. Continue reading →