2019 came and gone. I was only beginning to get a hang of it when it just slipped away. Leaving a lingering feeling of nostalgia. A new year in the new decade wrapped in promises and hope arrived in no time.
Hoping the best one can, I move forward. Firstly taking stock of things; some reflections and some promises that I made to myself in 2019….
- Wake up @5 am
I resign to my own abilities (rather lack of it) to make this happen. This is one of those resolutions that I have been recycling for the past few years. Maybe its time to put it to rest permanently in the trash bin. No point as you can see.
- Read. 20 books
Normally I could do 8 or 10 books, so reading 20 books was steep by my standards. So I was trying almost every night fighting sleep and Abhijit Banerjee’s and such books weren’t helping. I was moving at a deathly slo-mo pace. Though with a lot of help from Mr. Harry Potter. No, not with his magic, but its just so hard to put down. I thought I was possessed with the magic of its story. I was binge reading book after book, sometimes till 3 in the night. Plus the lovely thing is that me and my daughter are reading them together. I never considered reading them, always thought they were children’s. But happy I waited this long, at least I don’t have to wait for one whole year for the next book to arrive. It would have been excruciating. So, I am a through and through Harry Potter fan…. I accept, submit and prostrate.
- Write. Petitions, research papers, blogs
All of us here, will agree the new year has started in an unsettling way. The ripples of which haven’t eased yet. I did my part too. I went protesting and have spent quite a few hours debating with family, friends and colleagues. I wasn’t surprised when I found out, a few of my close family and friends landed up on the other side. And I am quite guilty that this has altered my perceptions about them. Though I fully agree that that shouldn’t be the case. Our world view is so polarised that there is no space for neutrality. We have a society that is today far more opinionated and staunchly divided. Frankly, I am at loss here, I don’t know what can be done of people like me.
- Walk+Run. 2000 km
In the middle of the year and towards the end my fitness band started acting funny and stopped recording my time. So all those months’ data is gone. Maybe it just needed an update, who knows? Then I was down with dengue and took about two months to come out of it. Then while I was dropping my daughter to swimming classes I got lured into it and I started learning swimming. It was amazing though but left me tired to get any running done. So, I can’t figure out how much exactly I walk+ran last year but by making some average I could have just done about 1500 km give or take.
Running is something I have taken a liking to and I take it very seriously. I look forward to it. Its painful, not physically but its my mind I need to take care of. It breaks me, one persuading the other and at worst one pulling the other down. Sometimes I run and don’t feel anyone around, its just me, my other self and the constant thumping of my feet hitting the ground. This monotone is at times music and sometimes deathly boring. I look for distraction. That is it, that is the trick if I could just park my mind somewhere before I get on running I could run more. It is a hard endeavor in solitude, almost meditative. I am sure you will agree if you run. The feeling after the run is ever intoxicating, I can’t precisely put it in words but it is this feeling I am chasing. Or so I would like to believe. Its part of me now.
- Eat. More millet, protein
This is working. Keeping it for next year.
- Sleep. @10 pm
Still working on it. Lots to do.
- Learn. Meditation
Few days a week we do meditation in the mornings at our learning centre so I have made a start in this matter. Its relaxing but extremely challenging for the mind. Its a work in progress..
- Make. Videos
Miserable. Not one I made. I am going to scrap this, I need to make sure there’s a need for it actually. Dumping this one.
- Start. Carpooling
Yes I do this whenever and as much as possible. Keeping it forever.
- Grow. Food
If not food per se, my house in general has become more green from inside. I am putting pots in every corner and planting in anything I can put my hands on. The result is not instantaneous. It takes weeks for some of the seeds to sprout and takes almost a year for some of the plants to flower. Need lot of patience. Takes up most of my spare time during weekends. Enjoying, keeping it for next year.
Wrote a few things that I cherish; few that I need to work on:
- The mutual understanding and commonalities in philosophies that me and my friend (partner) have at the learning centre is very precious to me. It is paramount that our heads think the same way (or approximately) for the success of our centre. Fingers crossed, don’t want it to be jinxed now that I have said it!
- Be more efficient. Once I read, Wherever you are, be there. Makes perfect sense. We try to multitask and with distracting gadgets at our fingertips, its increasingly difficult to get more done. So I just reiterate to myself to be present at the moment and do the best, the maximum that can be done, be it on whatever or wherever. I hope this yields larger fulfilment.
- Focus on finesse. Devil’s in the detail. Work often ends up half done or clumsy. Going back and redoing is a waste of time and effort. So focusing on getting it done properly at one shot got to do the trick. I guess so.
- Time Management. The fact I am writing this blog after two weeks it ought to have been written is clearly showing my need for this. Plus I told you I was possessed all these days.
- Writing. I wish to write books on my field of study, three of them or a big fat one. I hope to do it if I am able to do no. 4.
- Trekking. Wish to do lots of trekking this year, now that kids are older and trekkable!
Year-on-year yet, I seal the list of promises and hopes that I have from myself. Wishing you a year full of triumphs with some despair and fulfillments after a few misses. Have a meaningful and happy 2020!
Books I read, in finished order:
Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling
Kane and Abel by Jefferey Archer
Best of Ruskin Bond
Summer Hill by AS Neill
How to open a Sudbury Valley School by Daniel Greenberg
Era of Darkness by Shashi Tharoor (still working on it…)
Leonardo da Vinci The Biography by Walter Isaacson
Ministry of Utmost Happiness by Arundhati Roy
World without Men by Murakami
The Last Juror by John Grisham
Eat Move sleep by Tom Roth
Go set a watchman by Harper Lee
Educated by Tara Westover
What I talk about when I talk about running by Murakami
Miss Leila armed and dangerous by Manu Joseph
The Art of Choosing by Sheena Iyengar
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by JK Rowling
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azakban by JK Rowling
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by JK Rowling
Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix by JK Rowling
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by JK Rowling