“through the act of living, the discovery of oneself is made concurrently with the discovery of the world around us. . ."

Monday, April 25, 2011


I am into cycling these days. Oh, I could write volumes about the newly discovered pleasures of bicycling, but I restrain myself and would write only about today morning.

I went to sleep by 2200 hrs yesterday so that I can get up early today. At 0600, I am off on the bicycle, pedalling leisurely through the streets of the city that is slowly waking up. I guide the bicycle through quiet lanes, past houses still in slumber. I ride by the side of the canal through which long ago boats had plied. I glance around for the remnants of any old buildings from those days, but they seem to have been pulled down and replaced by modern buildings. I look lovingly at the old, decript palaces breathing their last. I am aware of my easy breathing, the pain on my knees and the discomfort at my buttocks, but I am so content and peaceful.

At home by 0700 hrs, I open my little netbook. Bashir has sent me a link, www.hindigeetmala.com. Bashir and I share a passion for old Hindi movie songs. 'Poochcho na kaise' by Manna Dey is among our favourites. I listen to Manna Dey. I listen to Mukesh singing, 'Dil Jalta hai, to jalne do', 'Aansoo bhari hai', 'Bhooli Huyi yaadon', Suresh Wadkar singing ' Seene me Jalan'.

An indescribable sense of peace and happiness envelopes me. I can understand the meaning of the Hindi lyrics only partly. I would like to, fully, but that doesn't bother me.

Talat Mahmood is singing 'Phir wohi Shaam' as I write this. Tears of gratitude well up in my eyes. I am so humbled by the fact that life has been so kind to me by gifting this ability to appreciate beauty, to be sensitive to good, simple joys that come my way. Life, I bow to thee!

********* Balachandran V, Trivandrum, 24.04.2011


  1. Hi Balan

    I was thinking of buying a cycle too.For one,it is good exercise,and then it brings back memories of old times.Is the city a safe place for cycling?
    I was surprised at your selection of songs.They are the same as mine.Most of them sentimental and touches you deep inside.If tears well in your eyes,you are human.No human can listen to those songs without getting touched somewhere.

    I had seen some people who cannot enjoy music.They simply don't understand music and cannot appreciate it.I believe it is something like dyslexia.The sad thing is that they don't realize what they miss out.

  2. nice ..have fun cycling.Thanks for the hindi geethmala link also ..will listen to some songs when I feel lonely or sad:))Otherwise I have my Raaga.com

  3. Doc Antony said it all!

    Any inspiration behind the selection of the pic of the cyclist?

  4. I can sense the pleasure :)

    Nothing can touch your soul as music. I get goose bumps listening to some, and tears or a faint smile. The delicate string, the soft beat; each strikes your cell and you live!

    such is music. You are a complete man, appreciating simple things in life and finding joy at every other opportunity. I am glad that I came across your blog :)

  5. @Doc: Its been nearly a decade - no, more than that since I rode a bicycle! My knees are like rusted joints! On the first day I couldn't bring myself to swing my leg over because the cycle went wobbling! :-D

    It is safe to ride the bike in the mornings, but evenings are adventurous!

    Happy to note that we have similar tastes in music. Hope you listened to those I gave you ( now, did I? :-/).

    @Raji: Will check out raaga. Yep, having loads of fun,cycling!

    @Anil: Bhaalu the bear!

    @Insignia: Yup, guess I am fortunate in being able to find joy in simple things. You almost had me blushing - I am hardly the 'complete' man, but you know what? I believe I am better than many I know! :-)

    I am in the process of 'simplyfying' myself. And B, wait for a surprise, I will be going to Himalayas soon, all by myself, to Badrinath and few other favorite haunts of mine ( this is in addition to the Ladhakh trip in July - I plan to leave mid-May. Want to do some research into old pilgrim routes - will tell you in detail soon! )

  6. Oh my God! I will be tad too too jealous of you! I want to do that trip to Himalayas and Leh for about 2 years now but somehow things are not working out!.

    Waiting for you to share the details :)


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