Saturday, November 29, 2008

Where The Mind is Without Fear

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depth of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake


..let my country awake..
..let my country awake..

Friday, November 28, 2008


Teary eyed,

However I still agree with a fellow famous Indian...

'An eye for an eye shall make us all blind'.

Respond we must, react maybe, but lets not jump at things and make it worse, or allow others to run away with our futures by having knee jerk reactions on our behalf.

I wonder where the Shiv Sena and company are at this time..
I wonder why NDTV calls bombay a 'conflict zone'
I want to know who the people outside Nariman house were.
I want to know how old the equipment is that is used by the NSG and the Police and the other heroes of the hour..
I do wonder if Bombay is a 'war' zone..after all wars are fought by military, not civilians..

We need to understand terrorism and make no mistake about it.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Not one of mine..

Here I was wallowing in self pity and now there is horrible news from Bombay. More people killed, after the first shock of the news wears off, the mind records the numbers dead, thinks, and then notices the numbers injured. Statistics, cold and hard facts about how many were effected. And I am full of questions, to which I have no answers. I seek.

A shame, that people need to die this way.
A pity that they get reduced to statistics.
Appalling, that we 'carry on' nonetheless.
Almost nonchalant about the fact that no one 'I know' has been hurt or worse killed.

Is this not an infection of some sort that all of us have? The ability to hear bad news, horrible and terrible news, watch it live, read about it online and see photographs of it, then close the newspaper/computer/phone call and turn over and sleep. Carry on. We always carry on.

How? Why?
Are we cold people, who care only about their own limited circles? Are we so busy making our money and earning our daily bread that we feel no pain of the people who have actually been impacted by this nasty event, and the many others that have preceded it? Or maybe we do feel the pain, but shrug, since we can do nothing about it.

I borrow from Ms Roy,

'...To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget. ...'

How long will we blame Pakistan and Islamic terrorists? How long before the last drop of blood has been shed and the last atom of fight has been fought?

We have become too friendly with the word 'terrorist', we know the predictability of the unpredictable tactics they use. We have made them a part of our world and learned how to give concession to terrible acts when carried out by 'terrorists'. We are not 'terrorized' anymore, merely surprised, perhaps appalled, maybe slightly worried. But in our already crowded lives, we have squeezed this unspeakably violence in.

Why? Who are they? Why are we victims or our own species? Why are we silent? Is there nothing? anything? we can say? Is it not frustrating to be a silent spectator of this horror show?

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Stone, the Stent, the Stint and the Surreality

All done, the stone has been ground to a million pieces, the stent has been removed and my stint at the hospital seems to be over. I shall tell you about the surreal though. The shards of the stone have been picked by a cystoscope, and I, ladies and gentlemen have a long lists of firsts added to my life experiences.
~ my first stone
~ my first surgery
~ my first stay in an Indian hospital
~ my first total loss of dignity
~ my first brush with spinal and general anaesthesia

and..what this post is about

~ my first experience of regression..

So, the General Anaesthesia I was given for surgery made me pass out a lot quicker and painlessly than its predecessor which was jabbed into the base of my spine with a long painful metal injection a few days earlier. I was told GA will make my throat sore as they would send in an oxygen pipe to make my lungs work (to keep my heart going). They also told me I would be miserably nauseous and sick when I come around. The first happened the latter did not.

So, up on the operating table, I lie down, I hear the beep of my pulse, the blip of my heart and various machines winking at me, the large light on the ceiling stared back at me, looking a lot more dramatic than it does in movies and TV. They connect me to a whole load of pipes and tubes and then I am asked to look away as they put GA through an IV injection. This time there was no oxygen mask, which I had when I got the spinal Anaesthetic for the previous op. So I soon drift off, the last thing I remember seeing or feeling was the cold injection and the sharp pain of it filling my arm. and then nothing.


I cant say I was awake, and I know I was not physically awake. But very gently I felt my own presence in a silent space, silence so sharp it was obvious. Hard to describe, it was like being in a silent white room, except that white was not a colour but a light, a light so blindingly white, clean, clear and silent and a room or space which had no identifiable boundaries or edges. I did not see myself, its like my brain was in this space of nothingness. Absolute silence..and then a thought.

A mere brush of a thought, followed by a pattern of silent thoughts, slithering into this space, following each other, asking questions, answering themselves..there was no me, just thoughts and white light and silence. Thoughts, not in my voice, just there. We think in our own voices and thoughts have accents too..but this was not is what came into my the order I can remember it in. It was not this unclear, and there was no sound. Almost as if I could feel my thoughts and not think them. Hard to describe.

...I can think. can I think..
..where is my body..
..under sedation..
The Mind is beyond sedation..
..what about the body..
disdain at the body which succumbs to chemicals
...thoughts are beyond chemical sedation..
why am i thinking..
is this hallucination..
..i am clearly thinking..
..clear thoughts..
..will i remember this..
..yes..but only for a bit..
this place is very quiet and peaceful..
..very quiet..
..very eerie.. i afraid.. i am just wondering where the thoughts are coming from wondering where I am..
...have been in this space before..i know it...
..will i remember this..
..yes but only parts..
...there are people outside this white space..
..they can see me, hear me..
why cant i hear them or see them..
..oh my eyes are still closed.. am in imagining this white space.. i am here its not imaginary.. someone will call my name..

And there it was, the doctor said instantly 'Can you hear me? are you ok? nod..' and I did. Like my mind could read minds and actions of others before they occur.

The thinking inside my head stopped..slowly..I could not open my eyes for a long time and I could not talk, even though I wanted to, I could hear my mother, my sister whisper, I could hear the nursing staff tell me, we are moving you to your bed now. My mum asking the surgeon if I am awake? when I will come around? If the operation was successful. I could feel them around me, touching my hand, whispering. I could not respond. It was as if I was in a coma. It was weird.

The thoughts in my head faded, but that feeling I had..of being in such a clear, quiet, white place, where the silence and peace were tangibly sharp was strange. It spooked me when I recounted it to my family and friends later and even now as I write I have goose bumps.

It is hard to describe.

Monday, November 10, 2008

More surgery...

yes I was stoned and last week I did think it was all over and tonight the stent shall be removed and I shall be fine. Well not so easy say the Gods from above.

A bit of the stone chose the hide behind the stent and caused major pain, its still in there, so tomorrow I head for the oxygen pipe, the anaesthesia and the surgeon who shall get the stone out, watch me in hospital and then hopefully send me home completely cured.

A month has gone by in a haze of pain, a long haul flight in pain and I am still in India aiming at being completely cured.

Luck, stars, God, previous birth, bad Karma..dont know what it is, but sure is sticking around for way too long.

Friday, November 07, 2008


Just to bring the weirdness in my life to a brand new level. The last post told you about the fact that I have 3 kidneys..double on the left etc..turns out I have four. Yup Duplex Systems on left and right side!They did not bother to check the other side in London.

Have had a painful time so far in India as a medical tourist. With Spinal Anaesthesia and stents and IV medication and hospital stays.

Shall bounce back shortly.