Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Living next door to office!

Just as the deadline of contributing to the latest issue of our service magazine began to close in and just as I had nearly made up my mind to cut-copy-paste one of my blog posts and pass it on as my write-up for the same, at a decent mid-nightly hour a note slid under our door proved to be the God-sent remedy to cut through the red tape of my thoughts' process. Not that the note was an invite or a congratulatory one, rather it was a NOTICE to us- the residents of the magnificent towers- to shift our belongings out of the common area within three days. 

Prima facie, the notice would appear to be just and right to all our justice-dispensing souls, but when two such souls are caged in a one BHK space for over a year and also have to keep in mind the spatial needs of an infant soul who recently joined them, the case needs to be heard before being summarily dismissed. Needless to mention, given the constant bumping and encroaching tendencies of the souls in question, they have long forgotten their vows of being soulmates!

Let me introduce the case systematically. Given that the concept of one BHK means one bedroom-one bathroom-one kitchen-one wardrobe, and also given that the souls have wisely chosen to reside in the ivory towers despite the huge opportunity cost it entails, how could two souls who have lived in sizeable spaces all their lives (and yes, palatial mansions after joining the esteemed service) be suddenly expected to squeeze all their lives, their belongings and their needs in a less than thousand square foot space and yet be expected to appear nonchalant/cheerful or patient about it. But for the wonderful friendship we have struck with a batch mate from another service ,who has generously given us a room in her house to park our belongings, the paraphernalia we thought would add value to our existence would have all but disappeared by now and left a gaping hole in our hearts and pockets. 

The real crunch is not just for space but also of equally (if not more valuable) privacy. What if any set of parents/relatives/friends decide to visit? While they never tend to resent the arrangements, the fact that a singular bathroom has to be used by many people (even if we leave out our infant), two of whom are expected to reach office in time may be hard to imagine for some of us by now. Not to mention the huge laundry generated by infant's activities which too has to be handwashed each day!

And yes one could straightaway walk right into the house from the main door (the only door) and also get a fair idea of what's cooking for dinner. But if the visitors come late in the evening and expect a quick-fix dinner or snack, they would be rather disappointed- for the helpless souls are literally without any help after six in the evening (If there ain't any space for the owners of the house, it would be ridiculous to expect any for the domestic help.)

Even if one of those souls tries to tide over the frustration by spending longer and longer hours at office, the incidental expenses are enough to leave them fuming at the end of each month. Even after growing up in an expensive city like Delhi, the souls could never imagine the seemingly insurmountable costs of living amidst this swish neighbourhood of Lucknow. Thanks Heavens for sparing us Mumbai, Bangalore or Hyderabad- given our narrow mindsets and even narrower resource sets, we never really deserved it!

While we count being blessed with an Angel as the greatest happiness of our lives, sometimes we truly wonder if we could have managed a little more space for ourselves if it were not for the pram-the highchair-the walker-the laundry lines-the toys et al. However mean or ruthless it might sound, may be life would have been much easier if one were not entrusted with this supreme responsibility of bringing up a kid in addition to the innumerable household chores and yes, the professional élan which the media and the common folks expect us to maintain.

Given that there's little scope for expansion (read stretching) inside the house, there are bound to be spillovers. And when certain items are rather indispensable, one cares two hoots for the outwardly appearances, which as is already the case with the two hopeless souls in picture, are supremely deceptive! Now it needs serious soul-searching on their parts to be able to find space to shift their stuff by the time these words see the clear light of the day.


  1. superb writing!! your best i'd say on this blog till now :) And seems these words hav fallen into the ears of a few other souls who've shifted u three into a much more difficult situation!! hmm.. life goes on...

    1. Thanks EsVee.. Nobody could have understood me better. .

  2. Excellent post! I had no idea you'd been keeping up this blog till I stumbled on to it after ages! Keep blogging! Hugs!