Monday, December 21, 2009

The Excess Baggage

Packing has always been a painful experience for me. Somehow my judgment of things is just not as critical as my judgment of people.. If packing was a trade, I would certainly be at the topmost level, of sucking at it.. for there's a thin line between the stuff that you want in your life and the stuff that you actually need..
And I just keep losing track of which side I am on.. Cause for me, what I want.. is what I need... So what if it's just for the sense of assurance that it's right there within reach if ever I need it..

So when today I sat out to pack for my trip back home, the memories of my last very sad visit to the airport came back haunting me and it got me thinking.. How much of your life can you pack.. in 20kgs?? Few clothes, basic necessities, a good pair of shoes.. is all that you need to carry, from your past? And is it all that you want?

There's been a joke in my family about me being a junkie.. quite in a literal sense for my inclination towards turning every place I go to into a Junkyard. There was a time I would pick up every interesting looking thing from all over the roads and put it carefully in my own kingdom of dump collection. Later it was books, articles, newspaper cut outs that I would never read again.. Letters, Gifts & Cards from people I would never meet again.. Clothes & shoes that I would never wear again..
And then there was time I had to leave home & everything behind to live my life out of a 20 kg luggage. And in no time this 20 would turn into 60 and I would be standing on crossroads of a dilemma- what to take & what to leave?

And then I learnt my first important lesson.. there's nothing you can hold on to forever.. Some day you have to let go.. Dispose of certain things to make room for others..

Seven years later.. I can not help but wonder if there's a 20 kg limit applicable to people in your life too? Is it true that when you are going to a new place, not only you pack your stuff.. but you try to pack people as well.. the ones you want to stay with you forever? And like we keep accumulating stuff over the years behind that closet, do we also accumulate the carcasses of our relationships, the memories of good times & the bad times behind a little corner in our minds..? And at what point in your life, does it cross the limit of allowed baggage? And what exorbitant price if you may, would you have to pay.. for the excess baggage??

I might never know the answers to these questions..
I might never know when to stop buying stuff I do not need or to stop loving people that are not there anymore..
I might never know if accepting the truth was a right thing to do.. or should I have fought harder..
I might never know when will I stop hoping.. or if I have already stopped..
But what I know is.. Life is not that bad... And even when nothing we would ever achieve would be able to replace what we have lost along the way.. the friends, the confidantes, long phone calls, late night chats, tears & laughter, lucky mugs,  wit & humor, curiosity, compassion, ability to love, or that feeling of trust and belonging...  We still have the capacity to be happy with our own selves and our 20 kgs of baggage.. for good things are waiting to happen to all of us.. We just have to make room for them.

And clear out the excess baggage..