I recently came across a question on a popular website. Somebody had asked how to be efficient while reading a book i.e. how to completely understand the story while not missing on any detail. And the answer was that one should not worry about reading the book efficiently but one should get completely lost in the beauty of the story so as to get the maximum feel out of it. The story of the book should become a part of your life, the night when you read it while it is raining and you are sipping coffee while walking with the character in the dark alleys, while the emotions of the book come pouring out into your hands and crawl towards your heart and engulf you creating a wonderful experience worth remembering.
The answer was, in fact, obvious to me. I know how to read books. But still, the answer stuck to me for days. I read the answer around two weeks ago probably. And I am thinking how this concept applies to everything, including my dreams and my way of living life.
I have always dreamt of travelling the whole world efficiently so that I don’t miss any place in the world. I have to cover every place, every page ever written in the history. But it somehow never felt right. It seemed too perfect a way to live. It lacks story, a beauty, a flow of events, a dance. I don’t want to cover the world. That just seems so mechanical, as if some task to be completed. I want to marry in the streets of the Vatican City, I want to make love under a million stars of Norwegian sky, I want to get lost with the hippies of North America, I want to camp in the Alaskan cold.
I am a computer programmer. We, the people in India, have always strived to be too efficient, too competitive. Competing for the top school, then top college to study, then for a top job and it goes on and on… But now, I feel, I need to stop and think. Does it make a beautiful story? I think I am okay with playing with kids of a local school, making a beautiful girlfriend in a college where people don’t just study but make friends for life, opting a job where I have enough free time to pursue my dreams rather than simply focus on earning money.
And more importantly, I want to leave a part of my life to the flow, to the uncertainty, to be caught in the wind, to sail away with the perennial waves of time..
so that there is space for new dreams to seep in.