Have been in India for nearly a fortnight now and have spent the last few days in my favourite getaway – the Pune-Mumbai circuit.
There are enough and more stories to share from the small but packed trip. I have been moving places, meeting people and getting the odds and ends sorted. It has been a mixed bag – the excitement of an unexpected meeting due to sheer fortuitous circumstances whereas the disappointment of missing certainly carefully planned ones as our plans go astray. Nonetheless a refreshing and energizing trip that will leave many lasting memories – though not all of them are pleasant.
I think the most interesting part of my trip is the different people I met and the varied experiences we shared together. Either I have become more perceptive with age or there is an urge in most of us to share easily with a person who literally makes only flying visits to your world and is placed at a convenient distance from your life. So for the most period it was a privilege to share personal stories and share certain private moments. It was intense at times mostly on pleasant terms though there were a few tragic stories as well.
I felt that the stories organized themselves well in terms of inter-generational narratives and reflected their priorities and attitudes. So it provides an easy window to share the stories in the same format.
The Millennials –
Met couple of cute girls who are the new generation in the family. At the threshold of stepping into adulthood, they were all giggles and laughter. Unbounded optimism and soaring dreams about their futures imbued a sense of excitement in an old fogey like me as well. Am at a stage in life where every hope seems to be qualified and circumscribed by experiences and instinctive caution against an uncertain future buffeted by winds of change.
To see unfettered optimism is a sheer delight – it was great to note that we seemed to move ahead from the scripted choices of being a software professional or a doctor. One girl aspired to be an architect while the other wanted to be an entrepreneur. Conventional yardsticks of success in terms of money and authority seem to no longer attract the younger lot. I look forward to seeing their dreams soar in the years to come.
The Middle Generation –
My counterparts were swimming against the rising tide battling to balance professional challenges and familial responsibilities. Everyday brought a new battle and one could not afford to slip an inch to ensure that the hard-earned position was not surrendered. Their cheer was occasionally clouded by the worry on some vexing problem or the other.
Thankfully there is a change in the approach they have with their children – trying to be more friends than stricturing parents.And it was heartening to see the youngsters help their elders to adopt to the modern changes of smartphones, netbanking, and social media.
The Golden Years Folks –
Health concerns and providing a legacy for the younger ones seems to occupy their mindspace. Mostly they are quite optimistic on the whole. A few tragic stories were sad to note and pushed one to wonder whether there was any sense of justice in the world or were we all subject to some random experiments of the unknown?
Certain family feuds seem to continue to fester across ages and it is only the youngsters who see it as being silly and obstinate. The older ones seem to be no less determined to hold onto their opinions and positions as they believe a change would be an admission of defeat. In a perverse way these feuds even provide a living force for some who seem to not have much else to look forward to – on the whole this does seems to be unhealthy as one needs to let go of the past and move on in life.
I did not have this template in mind when I started to understand the stories around me but the segments do appear to be useful to understand better our world and the people who inhabit in them.