My Ode to Chennai

It always begins with a hesitation.

It was about leaving the comfort and security.

And, thus it started… The abrupt pause of my heart mid-way and I catch my breath half way till I cannot breathe anymore. There is darkness in front of my eyes and hot flashes all over. My eyes are open, arms thrown out looking for support as I gasp for breath. Heart beat starts racing, pumping blood with such force that I fear my chest will erupt. I am hyperventilating. I am not thinking.

There is this claustrophobic fear gripping my heart, making me want to bolt and disappear in thin air. But I am paralyzed and can do nothing but wait for it to pass.

10 minutes later, my knees are weak and my breathing is back to normal. I had panicked.

It seemed like it was the end of everything, as you know it.

A new job. A new city. Another unrecognizable language. Another impending, unavoidable culture clashes. And a cold welcome in this extremely warm city where I knew no one.

A perfect scenario for fresh new start.

It didn’t seem so at that time.

It was just the beginning of an unwanted struggle – thrown out ruthlessly from a secure cocoon to harsh real independence, with little money in my pocket. And little did I know this was what was in store:

The pain to build life, piece by piece, the fire to keep all the passions alive, till the next best thing I was looking for was at my doorstep. Building new friendships, letting some friendships go sour and the lasting friendship kept me going in this city when I had nothing to hold on to. Paying my own bills. Struggling with the ever rising rent. The impossible roommates. Border lining bankruptcy which always made making choices simpler. Living like a real minimalist to save money for the future. There was this plan for the future. There were dreams that always kept me going.

This struggle was never ending.

And as this chapter comes to a close I realize, I had a life I had dreamt of when I was in college. Life of independence and freedom. The struggle was what I enjoyed the most. Some challenge every other day. Challenges that I love.

It is these ideas about the future is finally taking some shape. It was this impetuous heart’s decision to jump into a new unknown uncertainty.

And, thus it started again with the abrupt pause of my heart…

Which will be fine in next 10 minutes when I can breathe again.

I will survive, yet again. And make it all the way till the finish line.

To the next new beginnings in another city.

Thank you Chennai.


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