While I love my Chanel perfume as much as the next girl, I think nothing beats the smell of a freshly baked sweet dish, specially one that has vanilla essence. When I took out the tray of bread and banana pudding today, the house was filled with a mirth that one could touch in the air. I’d love to live near a bakery – the aroma of all sweet things baked is just so intoxicating.

And so is the smell of some excellently made moisturisers. I have a new-found respect for moisturisers and know for a fact that women need it like they need water. In much younger days, for me, a moisturiser was nothing more than an object of curiosity. I never used one, still don’t do it regularly, but in the last week all the continuous washing of vessels has made it somewhat mandatory. Of course, it’s much, much easier to ignore self-care (and I think I’m pretty adept at that). Though there is all the hullabaloo about creams and what not, a moisturiser should be decently placed for women to use them. The absolute giddiness of simulating flower, forest and river scents is quite exciting to me. When I had just started earning I used to spend a lot of money at The Body Shop (which I have now stopped and moved to other brands) but the point is that the allure of these simulated cosmetic tid bits is all a little too hard to ignore. For me. For me. Of course, it’s not like moisturised fingers are typing this…you get the drift.

***

I’ve been meaning to blog about this and that but time has been scarce, and for once it’s not all in my head. Four newly arrived books are lying on my desk and haven’t been touched (which is a barometer of how scarce time has been). Therefore, one has so much to say and then, nothing at all. That’s why the procrastination.

I’ve been meaning to write about this Ukrainian show – Snowdrop – that has gnawed on my nerves and now started to come around. It airs on Zee Zindagi and as much as I love how Indian women have been spared atrocities in the name of Hindi TV shows, the protagonist annoys me no end. She’s gullible, trusting, and boy, she’s dumb. However, of late, things have started to turn around and she’s getting back at the antagonist (which is pretty fun for me every single time – I love watching villains being pulped specially in Bollywood movies). The show is called Snowdrop after the flower that grows in the harshest conditions and still survives. It has been adapted from a Korean show called Ice Adonis, which is also a flower that survives all odds, if you will. As much fun as this has been, I couldn’t stop poking holes in the storytelling. However, now that it seems to be winding down and the antagonist is getting her ass handed to her on a plate, I couldn’t help but notice that it could be possible that the entire show may have been wrapped around the theme “what goes around comes around”. For the longest time it made no sense why the antagonist kept winning inspite of and despite of, and agonisingly the protagonist always lost. Now that times have changed, I am forced to think it may have been that viewers were put through all that agony to make redemption taste much sweeter. I care to overanalyze this for two reasons: a) DF would have done it. He would have found a way to reason why a (crappy) piece of work is intended to be that way, and b) if this doesn’t make sense, what does? How do evil people thrive, and the Lord knows they do. How does an honest person not get their due? How does such inequality persist in the universe until it doesn’t?

One of the major things I’ve come to accept is that there are people in the world who spend a lot of time trying to bring others down. It’s unthinkable to me because I’m too mired in my own self-doubt and remediation, but these people exist. They do. And one must guard oneself from such ill-meaning folks. Evil people will twist your words, will try to ensure you don’t get ahead, will do whatever they can to see you fail. One must prepare oneself accordingly.

***

Circling back to hands that need moisturising (weird segue, I know, but stay with me) of all the things I could inherit from my mother, I have inherited an absolute disregard for finger cuts in the kitchen. Whenever I used to see her carry on her work in the kitchen no matter how badly she’s cut her hand, I would be both, angry and amazed. Yes, she’d stop the bleeding, put the band-aid but never once had I seen her wince or not wash vessels because of a cut. I did exactly the same thing today and not because I’m unfeeling or anything, but because I had seen her carry on just fine. I did, too.

Which brings me to something that I have recently realised and although this merits a better way of saying it, I’m going to tumble it all out now that I’ve begun. Now, after all this while, I understand why Elif Safak wrote about wanting to be a mother while she was single and not about wanting companionship. I used to think she missed a phase or didn’t want to write about it. I don’t think so anymore. For I find myself thinking about motherhood from time to time. I think about how a frolleague buys her daughter all these lovely books and shows me those books every day. I think about how she once told me in great detail about her own experience of childbirth and when I shut my eyes she said to me with great sincerity “Evolution has made your body equipped to do this and it’s bewildering how birthing a child gets done”. But it does. And then you become a mother who stops caring about wounds or about how it’s okay to have purple hair or worry about the impossibles. For a mother, everything is possible. Sometimes I wonder what other habits I will inherit from my mother, but as long as I learn how she never takes no for an answer, I should be good.

***

I didn’t want to “celebrate” my birthday this year, but one changes one’s mind when you see your family and friends excited for it much more than you thought possible. The other day I was searching for a document from my previous organisation and I stumbled on an email in which Boy was expressing his disinterest in birthdays, but I clearly recall how wonderful his friends and family made it for him. The same thing happened to me. And among other things, N sent me a potted plant as a gift. She said it is a “desert rose plant” called Adenium and it can survive in the harshest conditions. N said it’s a symbol for me. The idea is to bloom inspite of and despite of. SS and I named the plant Mintu. He’s given it a life theme – Mintu vs. the World.

Well, it’s only a matter of time.