Dec 1, 2013

Really nowww!!!!!

And exactly 4 months from the day I landed in Singapore which was 29th July, 4:30 in the evening on 29th November my first semester exams got done. It was Aviation Law & Policy and I could scarcely believe that its over. We kept looking at each other in disbelieve. I was sitting sandwiched between Shawn and Ty for the exam and the last 15 minutes kept muttering the language from the case laws under my breath making Ty laugh uncontrollably. The IP exam was in the same room and I could see my afro-austrian hottie from the corner of my eye. Bliss it was once I had finished writing and could check him out guilt free. Hahah! Nadine and I hi fived saying "we made it". Just before the exam began outside the lecture hall we were the only two people sitting aimlessly on the floor minus any books or notes. I had honestly had enough. I had spent the last half an hour listening to this piece of music from Amelie and I was somewhere far away in my head.

We have come such a long way from that first class from Prof had shown us this video on the twenty four hour air traffic and I had wondered okay what have I landed myself in. This is fascinating but seems more on the lines of inexplicable in some ways. I grew to love the classes and made some really good friends there. Nadine and I had been meaning to go for a drink the entire semester and we finally landed up at Wine Company right after the exam finishing of a bottle of wine by 6 in the evening.

Had dinner later with the girls at Holland Village and Ty and I couldn't stop discussing aviation until Anh who is the youngest but acts like quite the mother hen had to put a stop to it saying "I am feeling out of place." We landed up at Wina's with cookies and wine as an antidote for her migraine and laughed away the rest of the evening, discussing Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Murakami, the chinese girls of our batch, John Mayer and how we shall diligently study from the first day the next semester so as to enable us to survive this ordeal better. I came home so happy and carefree. I kept looking back at the last 4 months and wondering what had changed, something changed. Where was the complaining, grumpy me?

Last morning I had a mini-crisis in Little India but I managed to override it and the cab to the bus stop also almost never came but T thankfully got a cab at the nick of time. I was petrified I'd miss my bus to KL. The journey to KL was 5 and a half hours of non-stop music on my player. I could hardly wait to get off the bus after the first 4 hours. Here I am in KL, chilling with my friend and it feels surreal. I have sooooo much time. Reallyyy now!!!!!

Nov 27, 2013

I have a paper in half an hour. Probably the easiest one of all. I gave a really really bad Public International Law paper last afternoon that left me with a sour taste in my mouth and a nasty headache. The only saving grace was in the form of P, this Afro-Austrian cutie from NYU@NUS who was my eye candy post exam in the reading room as I tried to cheer myself up and get down to studying Projects. I couldn't study. Came home and slept for 8 hours straight until T woke me up at 6:30 AM horrified that I was still asleep. I finally got to revise my stuff this morning but no mood to study anymore.

Moral of the story: I never know when I give a good paper and when I don't. The amount I study is not directly proportional to how well I write a paper. Arghhhhhhh! 

Nov 20, 2013

On an almost happy me today

Happiness is a steaming bowl of rasam made by your landlady on a rare lazy Wednesday afternoon when you bond with her due to lack of company or maybe because you have gotten used to these bonding sessions over toasting bread and making coffee every morning and sometimes her generous offers of delicious food. She is home away from home for me. I never ever thought I would ever call this place I stay in home. How I hated it with a passion when I first shifted in! Damn it things change.

Happiness is having homemade gol gappe and drinking screw drivers simultaneously while you catch up with  T on a Tuesday night. Happiness is rajma chawal, palak paneer and chapatis laced with ghee on the same night as you gossip about all the common people you once knew and rarely hear about but for Facebook.

Happiness is coming face to face with your best buddy at the bus stop after 2 days of cold war and avoiding each other because you gave him a piece of your mind. Happiness is making up with UT at the bus stop opposite Uni with no explanations being given or any justifications needed.

Happiness is all the yummie bong food P makes for me and I gorge on almost weekly, especially the fish curries. Happiness is looking forward to meeting her this evening.

Happiness is finishing the first reading of Aviation Law & Policy in 4 days without any guarantee of the grades you are gonna get. What the hell at least you finished the damn first reading!

Happiness is the end of term Bar-B-Q at A and B's place on Saturday which actually just 3 days before the dreaded PIL exam.

Happiness is knowing that exams get over in 10 days. God help those grades, you only wanna pass.

Happiness is silently acknowledging the fact that maybe, just maybe you may actually dare to think that:-

 -after all those moments you spent wondering if you did the right thing or not coming here;
 -after all those days when you'd wake up with the sinking feeling in your heart as you looked out at the dreary grey skies;
-after those agonising hours spent in the library as you desperately tried to bring your mind back to the words dancing in front of your eyes;
-after all those times when it almost felt like you are not gonna make it through this maze of research papers, assignments and presentations and exams.

 Well happiness is knowing you survived the first semester. Almost. 

Nov 16, 2013

Guess what inspired me today!!!!

I finished my first and probably the last revision of PIL last evening after much deliberation on whether I should give it another day. But Aviation Law & Policy beckoned. Trying to study Aviation all afternoon but my mind has been somewhere else. Studied a bit of Private International Air Law halfheartedly, taken too many breaks. Then I found this and I hope it is the much needed mood uplifter. I need to read something inspiring everyday to keep myself going. 2 weeks more and I am done with first semester. Sigh! 

Nov 11, 2013

Today is one of those days. I studied a bit of PIL, finished reading one case. Read one New York Times Article that made me mull over the perils of social networking and excess of texting and messaging. I took a lunch break with Bettina and Sans when we made fun of all the localites and how serious they are about books and notes and studies in general. I came back to my seat, finished reading the bit on the Rhodesian UDI and then read this.

It reminded me of people gone, of my grandmums and my Dad. It reminded me of the fact that I want to stay a flight away from family and loved ones, preferably a national flight and how I want to spend more time with Mum and Bonu and Mashi and Mumum and Mesho and Shivi and Mona and Tinni and Nisha and Sagarika. I want to meet Par, Rad and Akku more often.  I hope to meet P every now and then even if I leave Singapore next year. That pretty much sums up my world. Hahaha! Sounds so simple, doesn't it? 

Yes yes ambition lurks somewhere. I don't know if its beneath all of that or all of that is shrouded in this garb of ambition. 

Nov 8, 2013

It seriously doesn't help when the guy who got an A+ is roaming around before your very eyes, under your nose, chilling out, listening to music and studying while you got a C in the same essay and you are at your wit's end trying to figure how to manage all the reading material for the same module's final exam. I am so jealous of S___. He is brilliant. He quotes all international law scholars like he was born spouting the "The Treaty of Westphalia" and Grotius,Hobbes,Kant, Vettel and Rousseau were people with whom he rubbed shoulders with all his life. I am struggling with this paper and he does everything so effortlessly. Hmmmphhhhh! 

Oh and then one of your closest friends here announces on the whatsapp chat group "Guys I got an A+ in Indian Business Laws." Oh I am so proud of you but I still cannot get over my C. :(

Nov 4, 2013

I am late but Happy Diwali :)

As my roomie put it in words so eloquently this morning when she walked in all red eyed, looking haggard and tired after uploading her paper "Forget about Diwali mera toh Diwala nikal gaya." Hahaha! Those were the longest twenty four hours of my life. I spent the whole of Diwali writing a 24 hour take home exam for International Commercial Arbitration and all the misconceptions I had about how easy a 24 hour exam shall be, were dispersed when the question paper was uploaded at 9 in the morning. I was up till 4 in the morning today doing it, reading and re-reading and trying to figure if my line of arguments for the wretched practical problem was actually making any sense. We spent hours and hours hunched over our laptops drafting our grounds of challenge. I know everyone does this in law school. I am sure they do. But doing this after 7 years of work is a tad bit difficult.Plus law school for me back then was so different. There was no plagiarism policy or turnitin breathing down my neck. Come to think of it education back then was so pro-plagiarism that I had to change my complete line of thinking. Imagine footnoting everything I write or how do you footnote a memory or an experience as I increasingly find this happening in my Project Infrastructure class. On top of the moot problem there was an essay question and for more than an hour we kept thinking noooo this question can't be that direct, I am sure there is more to it until we gave up thinking let's just write what we think it is. It really isn't helping us by thinking what more can this question want us to venture into besides what is staring at our faces.

I finished most of my writing around 2 and my brain wasn't functioning an iota anymore.I packed up my bags to head home from Evans Lodge and the roads were empty and deserted. There wasn't a soul anywhere. I could here the crickets chirping . Not that the roads are teeming with people  all day but at 2 at night it felt eerie. Not even for a moment did I think I wanted to walk across the University to the bus stop by walking through Botanical Gardens. I have heard the strangest stories of people feeling the presence of something or spotting something. There is this huge board in one of the fields that forbids us from roaming around the campus late at night because of some ghostly presence. The University was a Japanese torture centre during World War II and Evans Lodge was the hospital including the morgue. Talk about being creepy. Its a big joke with us now but only during the day time. After 10 at night we refuse to walk through Botanical Gardens alone. Those who have been compelled to do that or dared to do that have always come back next morning with funny tales of the feeling of someone walking beside them or some mysterious force pushing them that they ran for their lives. Anyways thankfully I found a cab after some 20 minutes of waiting and wildly flaying my arms at every passing cab. 

I uploaded my paper at 4 and heaved a sigh of relief and slept. 3 more to go. I wonder how much more of this I can take. Wish me best of luck. :) Oooopssss Happy Diwali everyone.I know I am late but nevertheless. 

Oct 28, 2013

Can I have it all?

Someday  am gonna miss all these books and all this studying. Someday again an upcoming exam won't be the only tribulation in my life. That day I'll miss all of this madness and frenzy to complete my syllabus. Cheers to all of this today. I know I won't have this tomorrow. It'll be over before I know and it'll be back to the drudgery of daily life. Hopefully I shall find something new to look forward to even then. However much I crib and whine every day there are moments like this when I am reminded I am where I wanted to be for now at least.

Hope I find a workplace that shall have rows and rows of Construction Law Journals stacked neatly in shelves like in the CJ Koh Library here, waiting to be discovered by me. :) I am being too idealistic. Even if I do, there shall be some catch to it, like a neurotic boss and psycho nasty colleagues or a bad pay scale. Sigh! We cannot ever ever have it all. 

Thirty isn't too old or is it?

I got high on apple cider last night. I am getting older. This is how you realise you are 30. You wake up in the morning with a hangover because you drank 4 bottles of cider. Like seriously!  My drunk stories ain't that drunk anymore. They are more of happy and buzzed stories when I have a great time over  barbq and conversations on modules and how all of us are dying together. I am not the only one having a tough time. So many of us hold the same views and opinion on the way of living here, how you are not allowed to think for yourself. I thought being an Indian I was probably being too critical but I was speaking to an Indonesian, a Thai girl and a Vietnamese classmate and they felt the same. I don't share a single module with them but they have had the same experiences and they get the same vibes I do from the Singaporeans. I wasn't imagining all of that.

The only reason I get offered notes in my PIL class is because I am good friends with Andy and Bettina who are Swiss. If not for the Swiss none of the Singaporeans would come out and offer me their carefully comprised notes. I get the fact that my brown skin will be held against me. I was under the impression it is more to do with my race so if I was an oriental they would be more friendly. I was wrong because my mates belonging to neighbouring countries and happening to be South East Asian are treated with the same disdain. So last evening we were exchanging notes and it was amazing how each one of  us had similar stories to tell without ever having discussed it with each other. But to be honest I am not so sensitive about this racial profiling. Given that it is Singapore I am more than happy going back and working in India.

This isn't some fascinating city I see myself in. If this was London or New York I wouldn't have given a  rat's arse to racialism at this level and stayed on and tried to make it there. There has to be more to a city than just clean roads, greenery, well managed traffic, malls and more malls. I love the safety bit. I love the fact that I can wear whatever I want and walk out anytime of the day without men checking me out from head to toe, without men mentally undressing me, without being objectified, without being felt up, without being scared that I am gonna get raped. I love all of this and this should be the case in any civilised city but sadly it isn't so in my country. But this isn't enough for me at least to stay on. I so miss my people. People make a city or it has to be as fabulous as a New York, Paris or a London and this place is far from that. I haven't been to those cities so I shouldn't be talking like I am authority on having lived there but I am so sure they are more interesting cities to live, work and stay while you are still young. :) Come now thirty isn't too old and I am not gonna stop dreaming, trying to get where I want to. Not as yet. 

Oct 25, 2013

I confess I am feeling rather happy today. I just uploaded my last written assignment for this semester. A 3000 word essay on the "written requirement" under the New York Convention. I went bonkers with the plagiarism check and just before I submitted it I realised I had gone dreadfully wrong with my footnoting. It took the better part of the hour between 2 to 3 rectifying that and finally I could heave a sigh of relief.

I have also chosen my modules for the next semester and needless to say it isn't getting any easier. Sigh! But of course 4 written exams to go before I can think of the new modules. The last three in succession and that shall be a trial by fire. I haven't given any exams in 7 years.:( Next semester Business & Finance is gonna kill me beautifully, skillfully and ever so slowly. I am so hoping I get the chance to be killed by it. Hmmmmm..... Bring it on.

 But dear Lord could I please pass these 5 modules first without flunking in any and without having to defend myself against any plagiarism charges. Please pleaseeeeeee! 

Oct 23, 2013

And when I least expect it something reminds me of Dad. Like this childhood friend of mine on Facebook. We haven't met in years and years but we belong to the common fauji background. Her Dad was in the army and to top that her brother joined the same battalion my Dad is from and her fiance is an infantry officer too. Anytime she puts up a status on us army kids or brats I feel so nostalgic for the childhood I had and mostly the Father who isn't there anymore. Baba not a day goes by when I don't think of you in some way or the other.You are always there somewhere around in my thoughts. It isn't that mind numbing empty restless ache anymore but that void will forever be there. You are missed. I hope I can in my own small way make you proud of me. Right now though everything seems like a maze and I seem to be stumbling, getting up, falling down and trying to walk in the direction of the light wondering where is this light coming from. No answers as yet. 
One month, six days to go and I am done with Semester 1. I can't hardly wait. I am gonna run away from Singapore that day to KL. 3 days there and off to India for a month. Yeayyyy!

But of course I need to get done with 4 exams before that. 

Oct 14, 2013

And I am plain tired of all this.

I am tired.

I am tired of writing, writing, reading and writing some more and again writing. I keep looking out of the window and the view is so pretty and green and all I want to do is walk around, stare at the blue skies, appreciate the green leafiness of the trees juxtaposed against the blueness of the skies. I wanna worry about my appearance, my eyebrows that have grown into a forest, my nails that are screaming for a manicure and the feet that'll die for a pedicure. I want to be able to surf the net, read random articles, blogs, food blogs, strange blogs, the New Yorker, the Rumpus, Rebelle Society. I want to read the remaining bit of Julie and Julia in one sitting on my Kindle. I wanna go for a run and pant and pant and feel my muscles being stretched and come back home and take a warm water shower with the most aromatic of bath gels and just stand under the shower and feel the warm water over my naked body. I wanna shop for clothes without worrying about the burden it'll cast on my pocket. I wanna wear lipgloss and colourful eyeliners and colour co-ordinate my clothes and make up and shoes. I wanna buy shoes, slip ons, chappals, moccasins. I wanna go out for  drinks with my favourite people at our favourite haunts, order as many plates of crispy lamb and chilly pork and have as many glasses of Bloody Marys, Margheritas and Screw Drivers.

I wanna do all the above without worrying about papers, assignments and exams and this excruciating fear of failure. I am missing out on life at some levels I feel. I am gaining knowledge and yada yada yada but it doesn't help that while all I did was to sit cooped up in this darned stupid CJ Koh library during the festive season, everyone back home only spoke about the delicious food they feasted on, the range of colourful outfits they wore, the amazing times with loved ones, the gaiety and fun and frolic in the air and I was in this clinical and sterile country where every thing is so mechanical. People don't have conversations while travelling in buses. They are busy playing with their phones and tablets. They hardly talk. Whispering out aloud in the library is also greeted with raised eyebrow and a frown by a local Singaporean. I have one really good friend but she seems to be an anomaly amongst the rest. She is like us Indians, loud, giggly, loves to chatter. The Europeans are so much more friendly and forthcoming. The chinese are reserved and suspicious by nature of foreigners especially Indians. But if you are white you'll be treated like God in this country. I see it everywhere. I don't plan to live here forever so it doesn't bother me.

 I think this is how your perspective changes once you head out. Not that one is treated as a first class citizen in India. I am so so aware of how things work out in India and the shortcomings of the system. I totally get why people once gone often do not wanna come back once they get a taste of life elsewhere. Singapore is fair to its citizens and I accept that. If you are a Singaporean citizen here then there would hardly be any discrimination based on your race, religion or economic status. In India we deal with discrimination everywhere but then we get used to it. Its inbuilt and when we want to get something done we know we'll have to approach the right people. For that you need money of course. In India a lot of it is about how much money do you have and do you know the right people and these two questions are repeated again and again in situation after situation? To think I still wanna go back to that is questionable. I guess its the fact that I don't like living without a support system and my people and at the end that is all that matters. 

Oct 11, 2013

Note to myself

So my moot got over. And of course I was grilled the most. Back in another lifetime too I would be scared but this time I was hell bent on doing decently and couldn't afford to make a fool of myself. Plus my case itself was weak. I don't know if I did well. I tried to hold my ground but I could have done better. My partner was really good with her pleadings and so supportive. Our memorial was better. Thank God for that. I spent precious hours drafting it. So that was one saving grace.

I am in familiar territory now trying to draft an opinion for the Project Infrastructure assignment but yet again I have to do well in this one. This is my field. I cannot give a substandard opinion. Not in this one. No excuses and no room for slip shoddy work. 

This is endless. :(  

I also discovered where my heart is.  

Note to myself: I wanna travel the world but wanna be based at home. 

Oct 6, 2013

Of stressful Sundays

Today has been a strange Sunday. I have been stressed all day with the moot problem which isn't much really but in my head it has taken on gigantic proportions. Sigh! I want enjoy this experience of studying and trying to grasp new things and interacting with so many new people from all over but I am always running this race to keep up the pace. On days like today I just loathe the work load. Maybe I complain too much and I am unable to detach myself as easily as others.

So we went to Club Street last night which has restaurants and clubs lined up one after the other in a row and the tables are all spilling out on the roads. It is such a pretty hilly road and A, K and I were sitting around on the pavement, smoking and just watching the world pass by and  it did feel like we were observing them through a kaleidoscope because there were people belonging to different races and nationalities hobnobbing with each other.T and U and came later and we all jointly came to the conclusion that this place is too expensive for our pockets and went off to Clark Quay to sit by the river and drink Jim Beam in Coke. I wasn't drinking though. I didn't wanna waste my Sunday nursing a hangover.  Of course drinking should not be synonymous with a hangover but sometimes old habits die hard minus any tomfoolery and "oh my gawd what did I do last night" moments.

I woke up worried of course. Ran to the library and have been there ever since. Yuck my memorial beckons. Pray I do well. :( 

Oct 4, 2013

Of moot courts and maccher jhol and P

I had this mini-panic attack today. It happened in the evening sometime between 4 to 5 in the library. I was trying to get the skeleton draft of my moot court submission in place and nothing was making sense. Words were flying all around me. I couldn't find a single case to support my stand and I was just drowning in this sea of moot court induced depression. How easily I sink into it and again come back to float. I flit in and flit out of these self made bubbles of depression every now and then. I scolded myself and said this is how you work yourself up and screw it all up. I went back to typing and trying to find some semblance of logic in the problem  and I guess I did.

I managed framing some issue, even found a mediocre case law to support my position. I haven't finished drafting, no Sir I haven't but I guess I'll make my way through. Besides you know my old enemy Mr. Public Speaking has yet again showed up and is staring at  my face. Yet another instance when those vocal cords of mine shall have to be exercised in front of a mock Arbitral Tribunal. Uffffff!!!!!!Wait it gets even better. I am pitted against my smart room mate and a smart Singaporean in these moots. Some days I can't believe I do this to myself again and again. I have only just gotten over the shock of the IP Presentation a month back. Hmmmphhh!!!

I had lovely machher jhol and bhaat made by P last night. I can't imagine Singy without her and our long, funny, bordering on bitter conversations while walking with Baby Butterfly on her stroller by the side of the river. Every time I have to leave her place to go home I get this wistful feeling. Sigh! This is how we get used to having each other around P. I am already getting ready to miss you once I am gone next May. 

Oct 2, 2013

Imagineeee being gung hooo once all of this is done!

Today was the first 2nd of October, in my life of 30 summers that wasn't a holiday. Imagine working on 2nd of October if you are in India. It is almost like sacrilege. Hehe!

I submitted my second assignment today, the one that had been killing me with all the research and the different schools of thought. Thank you soooo much PIL. I still don't have an answer to that question I have supposedly answered in the essay. But I enjoyed all the reading, I seriously did. You have started to make me believe that I can do 4000 word essays without losing my trail of thought. Never mind the panic attacks that sabotage my mind every now and then. Whewww am I not glad this one is over! Now let's get done with the next one and the next one and the next one and not to forget the moot court and four written exams.

Wow if I had ever know last year while applying to NUS that I wouldn't have time to breathe, I doubt I would have applied so enthusiastically. Hahah! Serves me right though for all the reading I never did on my own and all the classes I never attended in law school. :)

Now I am sitting quietly in the library by the window and enjoying the view while giving the finishing touches to the IP Evaluation paper. Sigh! There is also the arbitration moot looming in the background. This is clearly endless. Lemme get back to my books. Imagine my life once all this is done. :) Am I still gonna be this gung ho? Hehe!

Sep 30, 2013

Promise yourself

"Regardless of your romantic situation at the moment, make a promise to yourself that you will love and respect yourself first. That you will treat yourself the way you know you deserve to be treated, and that you will not settle for anything less than everything."

I promised this to myself  last February. :)

Most days I feel like I am groping in the dark but I move on regardless of my fears which are omnipresent anyways. I fight my demons everyday. They ain't going away anywhere.

I think I am trying to live up to that promise. I am struggling everyday, more so since I began school at NUS and it isn't easy but I wouldn't have had it any other way. 

Sep 29, 2013

Happy days, picnics and wine buddies

Today was an almost happy day. I was happy doing nothing but listening to music and reading arbitration occasionally.

Today was U's birthday and S, K and I threw him a surprise picnic party at the Botanic gardens. S ordered Indian food and I bought the beer and K convinced U to come to college on the pretext of meeting S and there we were waiting for U with cupcakes and food and alcohol. :)

Today was also one of those rare days when A's state of mind seems to be in sync with mine.

 We were hanging out every now and then all day. Taking smoke breaks and coming back to the library to study. I love hanging out with A and listen to his stories about life, love and law school. Some days he reminds me of someone I knew more than half a decade back. I remember me being hopelessly in love with him then. I grew up of course and we went our different ways but not before I confessed my love for him. How innocent I was. I used to think if you love someone you should say it before its too late because you don't wanna die having that regret that you never told him how you felt.

Now its so different. One doesn't fall in love at all. I haven't drunk dialled or drunk texted anyone in such a long time save for Shivi maybe. I don't do these things anymore when I wake up in the morning with that funny feeling that all is not right with the world because my dialled calls list screams back at me of my stupidity. When did I grow up sooooo much that I am not silly and love struck at all?

I got drunk last night too and A and I were outside a club at Clark Quay cos we didn't feel like going in with the rest. We sat with our respective mini wine bottles talking about my fear of public speaking, his ex girlfriend who won't let him forget her and I laughed at him in my wine induced haze. Yeah I love these conversations we have after downing many wine bottles and I like it when a couple of days later he'll be talking to someone and he'll look at me saying 'remember I told you' and I'll be like 'yeah you did' and we'll nod at each other. A thinks he has told me about all these episodes and stories and expects me to know what he is talking about when he is relating it to someone else. He is the one person I spoke about my Dad to when we got drunk the first time. We never spoke about it again cos I didn't want him to think I want his sympathy. We are smoking buddies, wine buddies, sometimes library buddies. We are buddies and I like that. 

Sep 27, 2013

Love will come set me free I do believe still

Some days I still believe love will come set me free. Hahah! Silly me. On days like today when I have been fighting the blues last two days sometimes silly conversations make me smile. They don't mean anything to the other person but it brought a smile to my face just for that moment.

x- Things will fall into place. I promise they will and on that day you'll think of me.

Me- I already think of you. :)

Sep 25, 2013

Where were we?

Tidal waves of nostalgia are washing me away this morning. I woke up to grey grey skies followed by torrential rains. Reminded me of home and Calcutta and the girls who get so excited on a day like today. We message each other out of happiness because back home in India such days are to be cherished. 

I had no one to message but for P telling her I am homesick and we quickly made plans to meet up in the evening on the condition that I finish my paper by afternoon. I opened a new assignment that I have to submit in a month's time and there it was my Project Infrastructure question that took me back to Delhi and M and R and DIAL and all the work I did there and the airport looming larger than life. The airport that I saw built before my very eyes and became a part of my daily life and the airport that'll always occupy a prized place in my heart. What I am today professionally and all the effortless answering  I do in my Projects Infrastructure class is all because of that project.

 I went through my old work material, the contracts I worked out, the silly letters I drafted  and I had tears in my eyes. Those 2 and a half years there and I never realised I'd someday look back so fondly at those days. I keep moving on and on, changing cities and jobs and leaving people behind and I feel I won't look back but I do look back. All that I thought I wanted to be then and all that I thought I couldn't be then I just might be tomorrow because of the lessons learnt there. 

Sep 17, 2013

Do I even dare to dream of working in a construction law firm? Sigh!

The only class where I feel I know more than everybody else in class put together is Project Infrastructure. Haha!

One of the few advantages for having worked in this field for over 5 years as opposed to freshers.

So I shouldn't feel so cool about myself. :p

I am quite a dodo in the rest.

Sep 16, 2013

On today because it is far from being a fairytale

Last night when I finally finished my quota of 1000 words actually 1100 words per day of my PIL research paper I looked at the time and it was 11:10 PM. I was told by Sans on Skype that I should call it a day. I was hesitant initially thinking well I won't write anymore but let me read something from another module. I opened the China-Asean Air Services Agreement to read but left it after superficially skimming through the document. I had to unwind. I had been sitting from 1 in the afternoon and my grey cells had actually gone on the sleep mode.

Even a short span of 10 months at Grad School isn't lacking drama given that the kids from India who are my contemporaries here are already knee deep in petty politics and hard core back biting. I don't miss being a part of all this. Haha! It is such fun being the bystander and watch them get harassed over such trivialities. It is hilarious how us Indians carry a bit of India with us wherever we go.

So last night I switched my Kindle on and read a bit of Julie and Julia. Julie was in her 30th year when she took the challenge of making 524 of Julia Child's recipes in 365 days and maintain a blog of it. This was way back in 2002. I tried to find similarities between the protagonist and me just to inspire myself saying if Julie could make 524 of those complicated french dishes in 365 days then I can also finish all my papers and assignments on time. Alas the only similarity between us is the age and the desire to do something different besides the daily monotony of life.

My life is hardly monotonous now. Hmmmm okay yes reading all the time and writing is monotonous but I am not stuck somewhere I didn't wanna be. It'll get over before I know it in 8 and a half months. I have my panic moments almost everyday when I am convinced my writing is going nowhere and there isn't any flow of thought and coherence is too much to ask for. I don't think about my grades because it is pointless. I don't know how this is gonna be. Some days I console myself saying there is only so much stress you can take in one day so don't lose hope. This is the worst it can get for today.

Today I am going to the library and studying. I need some human interaction today which is beyond whatsapp voice notes, skype and viber.

If today was a fairytale it would be 11th May, 2014 all my 10 modules would be over and I would have successfully completed 40 credits required to get that LLM degree. I would have finished all assignments, papers, moots, exams without any setbacks but for the regular panicking. If only today was that fairytale. 

Sep 14, 2013

Some days I have very little to say but that missing is happening.

I am missing my girls soooo much. Right from S to M to Tinni to Nish Mish and the mad bunch.

And of course my crazy lil baby sister who is married now. I can't wait to hang out with her and my brother in law in Hyderabad.

Tinni, Dia and Nisha sent me the most adorable, drunken voice note last night on whatsapp that transported me back to Cal to Tinni's place, one of those happily wine buzzed evenings.

I miss my people and it is as plain and simple as that.

I still wanna travel the world and go live in different places but I want my people around.

That is too much to ask for I know.

When I am hanging out with Riona or P here then I am absolutely at home.

One and a half months have gone. Some days pass by achingly slowly and some days just flash past by.

I wonder where all this shall lead. :)

Sep 13, 2013

Summing up my day

That pretty much sums up my day.

Turkey and Ham pasta and home made Iced Tea for dinner at a hawker centre behind my place.

Pasta cheered me up since I am sitting at home alone on a Friday evening, reading and reading those books. Seems endless the readings.

I am still not convinced about doing nothing on a Friday evening.

I'll slap anyone who says this will be worth it. I don't know anything about my grades. 

Sep 12, 2013

Midnight cravings

I am feeling ham, cheese, egg and tomato sandwich hungry.

I am feeling New York Cheese Cake hungry.

It is 1:43 in the morning. There is no need to express these cravings of mine.

My roomie is busy screaming at her parents for having transferred funds to a wrong bank account or is it the wrong bank address. No idea. Alien language so I only understand bits and pieces of the conversation.

There is only so much of  Sources of International Law  one can read in a day.

The sight of freshly done laundry hanging on the clothes line on a sunny day makes me happy. 

Sep 11, 2013

I thought you would have made something of your life by now.

Yes I thought I would. Sometimes it feels so late and sometimes it feels like I have only just begun. I want all the time in the world but I don't have that frame of mind anymore. The 24 frame of mind. I am not 24 anymore. Hell I stopped being 24 five years back but that number somehow stuck on to my head. If there was one year I could relive I would want that year to be played again.

I get stuck in this limbo these days when I have bad days and good days and all are directly proportionate to how much reading and studying did I get done and how far have I reached with respect to my research papers. I know I am not the first one to go to Grad School but this feels like a tremendous burden. It does.

Some days I can't wait to head back home and some days I wish I could  go live and work in a different country. Mixed emotions.

Last week I was religiously recording my Public International Law lectures on my phone and laptop so that I could go back home and listen to it within the quiet confines of my room. I still haven't gotten down to doing that though.

Thursday evenings are date nights with two of my girls at Orchard Road. First I meet R and jabber about the world and exchange gossip regarding school friends and eat lots of yummy food of the fattening variety and console ourselves saying 'we lead such active lives here as opposed to India. It'll all get burnt with all the walking' followed by my session with P when we drink coffee and complain about our lives and various people and we are so nasty and unforgiving I must say.

Studying interspersed with smoke breaks with interesting people doesn't help. They distract you so no more silly little smoke breaks and no more downloading lovely music while reading. Yet again I only keep listening to the song on a loop and the article gets wiped off my brain and all I am left with is a couple of ridiculous lyrics of random songs floating in my subconscious mind which is anyways devoid of any sense.

So when is a good time to stop reading and begin writing? Seriously? Somebody please tell me. Hmmmphhhh!

Sep 10, 2013

You only hate the road when you are missing home.

Season of introspection and retrospection and letting go.

I am in love with this song.

Sep 8, 2013

My current state of mind

At 30 I handle alcohol and heartbreaks way better than I ever have.

Handling alcohol better wasn't easy. It was an effort that lasted over a year and a half and I schooled myself to drink only as much I can handle and you know what I think I succeeded.

 I think I have finally managed to put some demons to rest. Yes I have.

Heartbreaks don't hurt as bad. They feel more like crushes that aren't reciprocated. My whole world doesn't collapse around me anymore. But I do get irritated  cos sometimes you just want that person to respond for no logical reason whatsoever but for the fact that you like him and want him to feel the same.

I am falling in love with a subject I gave up on 12 years back. I'll never get to pursue it since I chose another field rather grudgingly and I have been making my living out of it the better part of the last 7 years but it does give rise to lot of 'what ifs'. Sigh!

I stress all the time about my weekly assignments and the month end research papers to submit. That is the first thought as I open my eyes in the morning. But all of us in the batch, regardless of age and nationality are going through the very same feelings so I am a lot more at ease now. 

Aug 28, 2013

You don't always make a fool of yourself

Anyone who knows me closely knows how petrified I am of public speaking. I do it only when I am forced to. By public speaking I mean standing on a podium and talking or on a dias. I love negotiations and discussions but addressing a crowd isn't my favourite past time unlike many lawyers I know who are brilliant orators.

Today I just finished with my first presentation at NUS and the module that required me to address the class wasn't even my forte. It is this subject called Intellectual Property Right Evaluation and I have been struggling with this for the last two weeks. However this assignment shall be accounting for 20 % of the assessment so I actually got down to getting my act together. I prepared for the presentation all over the Law School, from the library to the sunny staircase to the benches in the green field and it finally went off quite well.

But I have to confess there was this one moment when the presenter before me was going on at such a fast pace and I was secretly thinking okay I cannot speak so fastly and I wanna run away but how can I possibly do that when I am in a room full of undergraduate students who seem to have gotten used to my Indian presence and some of them are even a tad bit friendly with me.

 I have to mention my Aussie Professor though who has been so welcoming and understanding to someone with my work history where I have hardly dealt with IP rights the last 6 years. I don't know how this module is ever gonna help me but then again who knows. Thank you soooo much Prof for your words of encouragement.

So my weekend spent in indulging in nefarious activities like getting uselessly inebriated and dancing to "balam pichkaari" till 3 in the morning to throwing tantrums for romantic interests to come and pacify me,  didn't really have a downside. ;)


Aug 21, 2013

And I keep trying like I always have

I think I am back.

Singapore has been an eye opener of sorts. I am so out of any comfort zone that existed back home.

Till a few days back I kept asking myself why did I do this to myself? Hopefully I'll have a more convincing answer 10 months down the line once I graduate.

There are days when I feel I am the biggest idiot walking on planet Earth and there are days when I feel no there just might be some substance in those grey cells of mine.

I am surrounded by serious 22 year old Singaporean students or over excited 25 year old Indian post grad students and then there is me who turned 30 last Saturday.

I know where I wanna be, now I do but I don't know how will I find my way there given the bad markets and pronationalist Singaporean policies. Sigh!

I am struggling. But I try and I fight the blues tooth and nail every single day.

Jan 9, 2013

I shall live. I shall still live.

When I was 23 a friend set me up with her geeky cousin who in hind sight was a sweet boy. He was a book worm, addicted to sci-fi books and animated series and flicks. I would actually wake up at 6:30 AM every day and sit yawning in front of the TV to catch the latest episode of the cartoon series just so we could talk about it. Some days he would wake me up through consecutive missed calls ensuring I didn’t miss the episode. Those were the days of when missed calls meant more than just calls that were missed. Missed calls mostly meant call me back right now cause I don’t have balance or it meant call me back later cause Mum won’t let me use her phone and she gets an itemised bill at the end of month and she’ll get to know exactly which boy I have been romancing over the phone, at the most unearthly hours. I digress. So the boy took me out a couple of times and we went trapezing on his bike around the entire city, went for walks on the beach, had ice creams and one day he got me a soft toy. It was a dog and I named it Jumble. I was young, just out of college, waiting to begin my first job and despite thinking I was mature beyond my years, I actually loved that soft, fuzzy toy. Jumble got lost somewhere along way, shifting cities and jobs, time and time again.

The boy and I parted as we began, as friends. Boys and men have come and gone. We meet and we part. Like someone said men come and go and they indeed do. Now that I shall turn 30 some people who are total killjoys tell me that there’ll come a time when age would have played havoc with your looks and men won’t find you attractive anymore. In short they are warning me against the perils of being the possible old maid or spinster. I laugh and ask them what makes them think that I have always had a constant stream of admirers throughout my twenties and not that I surround myself with men who fancy me and have never done so. I don’t flatter myself about the men in my life. Of course I do revel in the periodic bouts of attention when I can’t stop gushing about someone but there has never been any guarantee of uninterrupted attention and no stable relationship and it has all been so transitory. So yeah for now I am gonna hope something good does come along someday and if and when it doesn’t come, well I shall live. I shall still live.