C’est Notre Jardin

December 11, 2010 at 9:59 am (Uncategorized)





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Love you Forever…

December 9, 2010 at 8:57 pm (Uncategorized)


Working with K today at Reading Partners, I asked her to go get a book for us to read. She knelt on the rug in front of the bookcase, glanced around for a bit, and pulled down a book. When she brought it to me, I felt a flash of nostalgia as I read the title Love You Forever.

She started to read, her tiny voice barely audible:
I’ll love you forever,
I’ll like you for always,
As long as I’m living
My baby you’ll be.

During finals week at college, G and I would habitually sit down to a “Friends” study break. The intended 40 minutes quickly became an hour or two or three. Never mind that I had 80 chemical reactions to memorize or that a semester’s worth of powerpoints lay forlorn on my laptop, the romantic and downright ridiculous drama of Joey, Phoebe, Chandler, Ross, Monica and Rachel was too great a draw. We would sit there, munching like chipmunks preparing for hibernation, saying to each other “just one more episode, then we’ll go back to work”. In one episode, Joey, failing to prepare a birthday present for Rachel and Ross’ baby, did a “dramatic reading” of the nearest book he could grab. It was, you guessed it, Love You Forever.

Perhaps one day I’ll read it to my own child, but at that moment, when I looked down at K, I was reminded of someone precious 300 miles away. My little one, as I still call her, is almost as tall as me. I’m sure she’ll gloat when she shoots past me one day. I’m just hoping she’ll at least hit puberty before that happens.

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current affairs

July 25, 2010 at 2:26 pm (Uncategorized)

I should probably clean up my personal life, but it’s too fun right now, and it gives me a break from responding to prompts like “what makes you special?”

C. told me to be careful, in many aspects; J. told me to enjoy my summer. I’m trying to not turn into that person I promised I never would. Unfortunately he did leave some impact on my stance on these situations, not all of them forgivable or “healthy”. But somehow, I think even he would be a little shocked by my actions.

In the meantime, I’ll keep chipping away at those applications. Life goes on, and for me, without regret or redemption.

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April 22, 2010 at 11:49 pm (Uncategorized)

After all the anger and sadness subsided, in the end, all there’s left is a profound sense of disappointment.

希望你好自为之。

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musings

April 16, 2010 at 8:45 pm (Uncategorized)

I probably should be working on my personal statement right now or packing, but neither sound very appealing. Maybe I can find some motivation after I write this.

Since I got back, I’ve been trying to get my life in order again. I found myself back where I started when I left 6 months ago, with the exception that I had killed 6 months of time. Between the job search, apartment hunt, and running around like a headless chicken trying to figure out medical school stuff, the past month went by fairly quickly. I’m moving back to the bay area this Sunday and going to work on Monday. While I don’t miss waking up at the crack of dawn like I did in Kolkata, I do miss having a schedule that makes me feel productive.

Going through my boxes, which I left unpacked when I moved back home in October, I found a ton of textbooks (oddly enough I have 2 general chem ones). I regret not reading them as thoroughly as I should have when I was in school. There were many a class where I barely looked at the assigned reading. Looking back, I was so focused on finding shortcuts to getting good grades that I didn’t enjoy the process. I’m bringing a lot of the Psychology books up with me, including the ones that were supporting my bed instead of being read. Hopefully I’ll find myself flipping through them and learning something on my own time. Though I do sometimes question by I paid money to get an education when I can just learn it by myself.

On matters completely unrelated: I love Crate&Barrel and I’m clueless when it comes to cars

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a traveler’s lesson

February 8, 2010 at 7:08 am (Uncategorized)

The biggest thing I’ve carried away from this trip (apart from learning to appreciate home more) is that life is too short and too precious to be caught up in only school and work. As hedonistic as it sounds. I have met so many people from all walks of life, each with their own stories and most with an unique path of getting to where they are. They have it right. Live while you are young. There’s plenty of time to work when you’re older and can’t handle lugging around a 40 pound backpack. But there’s so much out there, not just the sights, history and lifestyle of hundreds of different cultures, but also the emotions and purpose that drive every individual and in turn, every society. It truly is an incredible world. So get out of that library you’re slaving away in and out of that invisible bubble that defines your life and go see it!

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save tonight

October 13, 2009 at 11:12 pm (Uncategorized)

I read her book a while ago, and noted down this passage. At that time I had no idea I would be embarking on this trip. But Xian was right, at this point, I have nothing to tie me down. No constraints, obligatory or welcomed, to prevent me from doing the exploring I want. His words was the push I needed. Perhaps it was to fulfill a desire, perhaps to escape. The reasoning behind it shifted as circumstances changed in my life. But now, mostly, I just want to do something worthwhile, and I hope I will.

“As I walked along in the moonlight, I wished that I might spend the rest of my life traveling from place to place. If I had a family to go home to perhaps I might have felt adventurous, but as it was I would be horribly lonely…When you’re traveling, every night the air is clear and crisp, the mind serene. In any case, if nobody was waiting for me anywhere, yes, this serene life would be the thing. But I’m not free, I realized, I’ve been touched by Yuichi’s soul. How much easier it would be to stay away forever”.

Kitchen by B. Yoshimoto

—-

You are my ties to this life that I love. And it will be for you that I come back. While I’m excited for the adventures to come, my home will be here. Thank you for being my family so that I have something to come back to.

And Love, thank you for this. But you’re right, let’s not make this our song too often.

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for now

October 7, 2009 at 1:45 am (Uncategorized)

A part of me still can’t believe I’ve left, and a big part of me insists that I will return very soon. I don’t know where my whims will take me, but I’ve decided to enjoy the journey. I already know that I can’t stay in Thousand Oaks, as beautiful and comforting this city may be. Apart from my parents and sister, and many pleasant memories, there is nothing to tie me here. My friends, my work, my connections are all rooted in Berkeley. In reality, life did not start until four years ago. Before, I lived for school and the prospect of getting into college. I went through the paces – classes, clubs, piano, books, even dance. Everything was enjoyable, but nothing inspired me. I rarely felt strong emotions; I was content with being content.

I still remember V. coming over one night, breaking down into tears, telling me how rough life is for her in high school. She was losing herself, barely keeping her head above the decisions and changes that threatened to overwhelm her. I remember holding her, murmuring words of comfort, and at the same time, feeling relieved for never having felt that way myself. I have always insisted that I know who I am. That I never had to “find myself”, because I wasn’t lost, or at least if I was, I didn’t realize it. Looking back now, I wonder if this individual called “Irene” truly existed. The entity did, but did the entity that did well in school and respected her parents ever encapsulate a notable person. My memories are vague. I don’t remember much of that “Irene” anymore.

I hope the person I am now is better (though better is such an amorphous term), or at least more fleshed out. I take comfort that the relationships I’ve built in the past four years have been incredible. I’ve made friends that I will keep throughout my life, and I’ve been priviledged to work for and alongside some of the kindest and most generous people I have ever encountered. Without a doubt, they have made me a better individual. At Berkeley, I found the challenges I sought and the spirit I didn’t know I needed. There is a freedom here, not simply from parental restraints, but from the confines of preconceived notions and superficiality that permeated my teenage years. I was encouraged to question, and discover, and experience. And what are we but an amalgamation of experiences, bound together by our ideals and morals? So I guess, in a way, I did unwittingly embark on a bit of self-discovery.

A lot of thanks need to be said, though they are hardly enough to express the magnitude of my gratitude. I will not say good-bye – I’ve always hated that word. Instead I’ll revert to my native tongue, and simply say, “see you again”.

—-

On another note, I’ve decided to take a leaf out of Sandy’s and Phong’s book and start my Photo a Day. Hopefully I can keep it up.

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starting up again

September 9, 2009 at 5:59 pm (Uncategorized)

I’m trying to keep post-MCAT anxieties at bay. It still creeps up sometime in the forms of optical refractions and hormonal pathways, but slowly the gnawing worry is drifting from my mind, the questions that I might have gotten wrong slyly forgotten. I’ve always had a terrible memory anyways.

Back at work now, I am glad to be around the people I haven’t seen in months. Dr. R. is an amazing amazing man and oftentimes there’s more laughter than work here at the office. Being here, seeing patients again, I’m glad I’m pursuing medicine.

I’m excited for India. Preparation is under way (proven by the two new punctures in my deltoid) but there’s still much to be done. My apprehension for the trip lies not in the possible physical dangers, but rather in what I will encounter and what I will feel. I wonder if I will returned haunted by my experiences or empowered by their implications. Or both. The world is open to me and there is much to learn.

There is an email drafted and ready, written as much for the intended recipient as for the organization of my thoughts. I’m wondering if I should send it. I feel like I should explain myself, but it might just be a superfluous action.

Thanks to Xian, there’s a familiar weight in my hands again, less than what I’m use to, but better at times. It’s been fun, shooting with something that I can control. Black and white is still preferred.

On a final note, the familiar soreness has settled in. I like it.

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potential

August 24, 2009 at 10:52 pm (Uncategorized)

“This is one of the most singular experiences, waking on what feels like a good day, preparing to work but not yet actually embarked. At this moment there are infinite possibilities, whole hours ahead…She can feel it inside her, an all but indescribable  second self, or rather a parallel, purer self. If she were religious, she would call it the soul. It is more than the sum of her intellect and her emotions, more than the sum of her experiences, though it runs like veins of brilliant metal through all three…It is an inner faculty that recognizes the animating mysteries of the world because it is made of the same substance…”

-Mrs. Woolf
The Hours

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