Life, sketchbook

That practice of hugging

My sister and I were utterly confused about this practice of hugging for most of our life. We had many questions. We grew up in Kolkata where no one knew about hugs. And why would we…

Transcript: We the Basu sisters were so alient to the concept of hugging. And why would we? Who would want to hug hot sweaty Bengalis all the time? And then how close is close? I mean does “close” have to be reciprocated in distance? What if someone thinks they are closer than you think you are…
And then which body part do you hug? I have no choice but to hug tummies, being super short.
But when I met this boy, who really enjoys hugging, and this little thunderstorm who is a bony little hugger, I had to tolerate it sometimes. But apart from these two, I am hugely grateful to social isolation. No more random social hugs! As my friend Toinks says “Do namaste instead”!

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Event, Life, sketchbook

Fifteen years with the brown boy

Today the brown boy and I celebrate fifteen years of being married. I am incredibly proud of this milestone, but the entire credit goes to him – who knew patience could last that long?

He’s put up with my weirdness, taken full responsibility of being the parent to our child

…all for the pleasure being in this blog!

He’s the Bergman to my Ullman,

my sense of home and my ends of days:

This marriage may have been a mistake but I would make it again to live through all these years with this brown boy again.

❤︎❤︎❤︎

APPENDIX

The story of us: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3Paris, not me

And here’s the drawing that I made after our first anniversary: We had sat and watched the waves in Bandstand.

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Books, sketchbook

Another one from The Only Story

As I wrote the other day, The Only Story was thought-provoking, not least in the social mores that it strove to question, but also about the very banal nature of love.

I often draw in my sketchbook about the books I read, fodder for the drawing in a way. These pages were made while reading The Only Story.

Who can control how much they love? If you can control it, then it isn’t love. I don’t know what you call it instead, but it isn’t love.

The Only Story by Julian Barnes

[Finished The Only Story the new book by Julian Barnes. A tale of such unequal love, and so much pain.]

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People, sketchbook

Men and women

I’m lucky that some of my best friends are empathetic, inclusive, generous and kind human beings. They usually take a lot of pains to show that they are not, by the way, but sometimes their views on women are so illuminating to me simply because of their gender.

“Women and babies: They take all the opportunities (given to them) and squeeze everything they can out of them.”


“Probably they don’t feel as entitled as men,” qualified the brown boy.

But they are always, always, more intellectual, says Pacificleo, having tried to become one himself just for dates during his social butterfly youth.

Ladies, do you agree? Do you squeeze everything you can out of opportunities? Maybe we do it sub-consciously, I never feel like I do anything with opportunities! But I am clearly intellectual, at least!

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drawing, Life, sketchbook, Work

Surviving work

The last two years have been incredible years of growing for me in my professional life. Challenging work, difficult situations, and always the need to build trust from bottom up.

These are some of the earliest drawings from those days:

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What kept me going was the long game, and guiding myself with

Progress, not perfection

which I learnt from this 99u talk by Effie Brown.

I also draw myself out of stress, since drawing is nearly therapy for me. The 2017 and 2018 sketchbooks are filled with “stressy” drawings – as my friend Uli would say – like this one:

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After a while though I got used to it, and learnt how to survive difficult days

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Though our man, the brown boy, did have the last word:

“Ultimately, it’s all about having a good time. Later on if you feel you haven’t enjoyed yourself it’s not worth it.”

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