This is from an old sketchbook, of a few years ago when the little tornado was learning to talk. Like all new parents we were caught unawares about the new organism’s ability to absorb and regurgitate at opportune moments.
Often during the work week I am terribly challenged finding a few minutes to draw, so you can imagine that on Friday evenings I have all these pent up drawings just struggling to be expressed.
But then of course there’s the household calling or your energy levels need bolstering…
Those weird lockdown days were strange, so strange…and while the world was coming undone this song by 10,000 Maniacs was playing on loop in my head. I was feeling lucky, so lucky, and still so thankful for every single moment.
“I should probably tell you there’s never a happy ending in your life.”
“Just go quietly when it’s time to die.”
Continuing from yesterday’s post on people watching, here’s another trip from last year.
“We spent seven beautiful days in Kolkata – beautiful days of Lakshmi Puja and Bhai Phonta. Though we both had to work a lot we got to spend some time with near and dear ones. And lots of near and dear food. Like chandrapuli, darbesh, narkel naru, malpua, chamcham, barfi, kochuri, jilipi and much more.”
“Airport people are the best to draw. This restless Japanese tourist was not calm. Maybe his legs were aching. Maybe it was his heart.”
I was looking at the body language of the people around and thinking that “Bengalis always look so apologetic to be present. Like they don’t own the right to exist. They look too humble and sit as if they are trying to disappear into the background.
Be here, own your presence Bengali!”
“Baboo will you make some coffee?” “Sure!” “Ah, done!”
“Where’s my love and concern?” “Ulp. But you asked for coffee.” Grr.
Some of you may know that I’ve had this blog for nearly 15 years. The earliest post was May 2006. Here’s a post from those hot summer days when Delhi was baking and I was sitting in our top floor walk-up in East of Kailash, using our old Windows desktop to write those posts. This is the first one with the anteater –
who was going to be one of the characters in an alphabet book I was illustrating at the time. At the time I really didn’t want to be a designer and only wanted to illustrate children’s books, and didn’t even know how important this anteater is going to become in my life!
Anyway I was trying to remember what I was doing ten years ago in September 2010 – it’s only been a decade but feels like a generation in the age of the world. I had just returned from Sweden and had probably started working in TIL by then. By September I had found my groove with drawing again, and was as usual worrying about inspiration, drawing and happiness in Creative block and Being happy.
Finally when I read Plato and Platypus walk into a bar in 2016 it all made sense for me…
Just like I have countless drawings from 2003-2005 of the brown boy sleeping, now I have those of Orin’s endless meals as he grows…
Sometimes we fight over the music playlist and fall into each other’s joke traps.
At other times we have some deep conversations.
“No one has fun without anyone, Amma”
“You need to draw the details, Amma”, he says. So I do –
“Why do you always draw when I draw, Orin?” “Because it’s like you and me cuddling, Amma!”
My friend k_space gifted Just Kids to me a decade ago and since then Patti Smith, with her music and her writing, have been my spiritual savior. I squeezed M Train out for months, not wanting to let go of her company.
“Never let go of that fiery sadness called desire.”Patti Smith