One chai evening

Yesterday was international chai day it seems, and coincidently we also did one informal chai session with the dept. Something strange, ambivalent, or bitter-sweet moment is that the college is ending online. A couple of days ago Vj said that if you’re nobody in your life or someone else’s life, how do you prepare for situations that can be escaped only if you have power? My pen still sings while I ponder about it, how the hum of strength is seldom an empty excitement if I connect it to the liabilities that are yielded out of friendships or relationships. Her words perpetually come with great force, and it punches me on the face, be it talking or writing.

On chai conversations, she was glad that the college didn’t come in between the teacher-student bond; that she couldn’t see college at all in online learning. The influence of these bits to me is somewhat a kind of obscure remedy. It will sound like I am smearing butter all over your dosa but I feel like a kutty plant being watered, the flowers are moments with these teachers that can be seized as a memory, but no one dares to pluck it off. Three years of CPE to me, was like voyaging on some undiscovered water, sometimes drowning and other times floating. The department has made someone out of me that feels less stupid, that aches to be a discoverer of many many stories.

here’s one very rare moment where I am not admiring myself and happily staring at someone else

Amalnath spoke, touching on how he carries a little regret about not being participative in the past two years. I hold the very regret, that I could never fit in until a certain tweetathon and buttermilk session befell, with Vj again. I am extremely grateful for her that I am ready to ditch lays and become one ambassador for bingo. She is addictive, just like her plain bingo chips. Very lovely Diya (and others) was the reason behind this wholesome session where I learned CPE was many peoples’ first love.

The authority to assume that elders are equipped in the fundamental ways of softening my messy teenage seems so ridiculous now. There is a fascinating detail around the realness of the learning with the department, that granted me a possibility to think in an outspread sense.
Ashta said something very beautiful, “A class that behaved like husband and wife celebrating their 30th anniversary.” Even if there are fewer talks; if there are no complementary conversations, everything is still said and understood.

Amma was pretty thrilled to see AM on the screen again. She has been doing this spy business behind my room’s door since the last lockdown. It is during this time that there breathes no normal acquaintances talks or intermediate resolutions to her. She stands behind the door and peeps into the tiny opening as if she has understood how to be, of no fixed abode, ready to adjust in the rarest of situations – casually. On the flip side, she went on the gram texting P and S that my chai session didn’t let her watch her serials. Ma, who asked you to mute the TV, and be engaged in spying to detect the kind buzz of our talks?

I am still anxious about simply hitting that unmute button on the unadorned screen, but the dept, that’s my home, has provided me with enough guts to talk despite me trembling with a shiver. Hands keep shaking and so do my mouth. Of course, all our heartfelt speeches were not loaded amidst admiration and passion. We were utterly honest and talked in between witty memories and gratitude. Full of awe, more than mere words. I enjoyed multiple grins on and off the screen, the kind shrugs, and some delicate shine beyond my glasses. The cringe behind cuteness, the pleasure of being called cows, dabbas, and kakkas that I am pleased of, I think we are all honored by each other’s existence. It is not naive to appreciate the company, for even the awkward silences became comfortable. Perhaps we will eternally be in touch and the bond endures. Tatas’ and byes’ are a part of growing. (Or do I say aging? :p)

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