My god, is it on or what!!! I am suffering in this cauldron of humidity, putrefying smells, and rising temperatures as I try to make sense of the drastic change in weather. And I am not kidding about the smells. In the last few days, as the evenings get more humid and dense, there is a strong smell of sewage and waste that makes its way into the inner roads of my neighborhood by around 9 pm. And it doesn’t just pass by….oh, no! It is here to stay and can possibly put a skunk to shame. This smell is pronounced by the fact that the rains have receded, and with it have gone the pleasant weather and the somewhat cool breeze that would occasionally make its presence known on a warm, sultry evening. The last few days have gotten excruciatingly painful and I try to deter myself from having more than one shower a day in my brave attempts to acclimate to my new life and the new environmental changes. Some days I succeed, and some days I end up having three showers a day!
As I sit and type this blog, I can’t help but draw parallels between the hot, steamy weather in Mumbai and the turmoil and storms that are developing inside of me, consuming every vein and cell in my body, reminding me of the very few times I actually had to sweat in the cool, comforting weather of San Francisco. It is the second month of our arrival and I am still not sure about what I am doing with my life. A colleague just shared with me a quote he once read; a quote he says is the guiding principle of his life: “Life is not about discovering ourselves, but creating ourselves!
It is so very true. I think about this opportunity that I have been given where I am able to learn more about myself and be kinder to myself than I usually am. As a psychologist, I find it intriguing that I am constantly learning and discovering new things about myself and re-discovering the much sought after virtues of kindness and patience: to my self and to others. In the rat race to achieve things, to go places, to be someone, and in our attempts to chase this elusive phenomena we call “happiness”, I think a lot of us forget to be kind and compassionate to ourselves and others. We forget that it is in giving that we receive and we are constantly asking and demanding favors and material goods from others believing that everyone and everything else holds the keys to inner happiness and peace. I don’t know…perhaps I am rambling. And if I am, I cannot help it. I have spent 3 hours round trip traveling to New Bombay for the second time in order to get all my ducks in a row for the quarantine certificate of my cat that we brought with us from the US. I got into a cab today and knew that I was going to pay for it, both literally and figuratively. It was in the middle of the day and by the time I got home, I was sweaty, exhausted, and felt like the life had been sucked out of me. It did not help that as I went through the rest of my day, it got warmer and more humid, till this point where I feel like I can barely think anymore.
So, on that note, I am going to turn in for the night and ask myself, “What am I doing with my life? What should I be doing with my life?” And perhaps, just perhaps, my dreams may paint a picture, an image that I would never imagine about my life. Or, I may just sleep like a baby, oblivious to the smells and sounds that lurk in the warm nights of this city.