In my family, I am known as the hard drive. From about the age of 2 years, I can recall details about the 10 schools, 18 houses and 8 cities that I have spent my life in.
For special instances, like a life altering event, for instance, when my grandparents died, I can recall everything. Who was there, what were they wearing, the clouds in the sky, the smell of incence sticks. For such instances the files in my brain have HD video with Dolby surround sound, and often slow motion effects in sepia filters.
But I am also growing up. And the more memories I make, the more I am fearful that I may forget. Since I pride over my abilities to recall, it is crucial for me to remember. What will happen when I grow old? Since I am the one who makes people remember tiny little details, who will remind me then?
We love to travel. My family is a travel freak family. But collectively, we came to realise, that after seeing so many things, your memories tend to blur at times. Photographs are there, but in this digitised world, who has the time to go through files looking for a particular image.
This made me think about journals. Now, as I child I wrote diaries for quite a long while. They were my friends and confidants. You can imagine the despair my little heart went through, as I had to change yet another school and city. However, as time went by, their secrets became heavy, for them and for me to carry. And so I stopped.
Years later, I have mustered courage to do it again.
AT Chandertal, Spiti, Himachal Pradesh
Hopefully, this time, I will not stop.
Each sketch, as and when I make them, will have the date and place.
I can imagine myself, years later, alone somewhere, or perhaps with my grandchildren, going through these journals, and instantly being able to feel the cold, bone chilling winds of Chandertal or the aromatic pine winds of Kinnaur.
I have for a while associated diaries with the darkest phases of my life. Despite the strength I derived from them, they also held those secrets which I feared would incenerate my image in front of all those I hold dear. And who, have no idea of what I go through.
I wanted to change my views on an activity so intrinsic to my survival. This time, I have decided to record all the good and the beautiful in my diary. Instances, quotes, sketches.
The mind and heart are enough for the bad. Its the good I need to be reminded of, time and again.
Its a bit late to make a new years resolution, but by putting this out here, I am hoping I can hold myself accountable. Lets see.
At Kalpa Valley, Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh