Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Jackrabbits and Elves - The making of true joy

Image Courtesy Wikipedia Commons

By Gaurav Parab

There is an odd little hill behind my apartment. It just sits there, muttering under its breath as drug dealers and young couples trek up its gentle slope every now and then. It is old, half burnt and grumpy. With bad breadth.

With its flat and long top, a few years back it was a nice place to practice that long disused golf swing or take walks to nowhere. But more recently, with the type of schedule I keep it makes more sense to go to a bar instead of a sorry excuse of a hill - if there is some time left for any going to be done. 

The other day, on an impulse, as I started back home from work I called up the Missus and asked her if she fancied taking a walk along the hill. I had no evening calls, and there is only so many Simpson reruns one can watch every evening before hitting the writing desk. The missus reluctantly agreed, she being from the Himalayas and the hill being a poor country cousin of a poor country cousin of some of the mountains she has spent her childhood in. To spread the general lameness of my idea, we even asked her sister to join in.

The sister in law agreed while furiously typing on her smartphone about what I imagine was the latest Yo Yo Honey Singh song. Song released. Makes no sense. It is catchy.

So we went. Completely equipped for our adventure. 

1. Water bottle to avoid being that person who gets dehydrated on a five minute trek. Check. 
2. Call placed to relatives to avoid being that person in 127 hours. Check
3. Cell phone charged to be that person who uploads pictures of any outdoor activity instantly. Check.
4. Old Spice Aftershave to feel sexy and thoughtful at the same time.

In the fourth minute of our five minute journey, close to the summit and low on oxygen - the most wonderful thing happened.

Jackrabbit ! Freaking Beautiful Jackrabbit.

From behind a boulder, a Jackrabbit bolted out and ran down the slope. In the middle of the a city! The whole act of peeking from behind a boulder and running down the slope was unbelievably rapid and primal like its life depended on avoiding a Software Marketing professional.

It was so unexpected and so sudden that for a moment we didn't know how one is supposed to react on seeing a Jackrabbit.

We laughed hard and laughed true. In an inexplicable, simple way. Genuine happiness.

It might as well have been a Elf, or something more magical than a mere hare. 

My point is that most of the joy that I have experienced, or most of the things that have shaped me have all been outcomes of simple impulses like walking up a long neglected hill. Every time I decide to put on my shoes and go out, instead of plonking down on my bed wonderful things happen.

Met my wife on an impulse. Made my strongest friends on impulses. Met people who continue to inspire me to answer my true calling as a writer on an impulse. Lovers, haters, party hoppers, thoughtful souls, dogs, cats, sharp witted, brilliantly dumb. Took up every single thing I cherish on impulse.

Never, ever had a plan. Goals, yes. But never a plan.

I am not wise, or old enough to write a list of lessons on life like those neatly designed Facebook posters. But if there is one thing I would like to pass on to you, through this impulsive and short blog post, it is that Joy happens when you take detours. Straight roads only take you to destinations. It is those poetic forks and back roads that take you to where you are supposed to be.

Joy happens when you walk up to a random person and say Hello. Joy happens when you move away from a Macro loaded Super Excel Sheet schedule and move to a bank sheet of paper. 

Joy , like a Hare from behind a boulder, cannot be planned.

Feel free to share how joy has come to you, when you least expected it to.
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Priya - Prasad said...

Nice blog!!!

ankit said...

Another superb one!

Monali S Churi said...

Thoughtful Indeed!!!!

Shreya said...

Awesome GUP :) I concur, completely :D