On getting an invitation for a function to launch HSV‘s new book, I eagerly waited for the occasion and refused to commit to any other task that would conflict with the program. HSV is my favourite Kannada writer. Being in the book launch would also give an opportunity to meet several writers and other readers.
The program was in the evening on 24 September. The 23rd night was rainy, and dark without electricity. The sky was cloudy in the forenoon of 24th and it showered a few times. In the evening, the sky was overcast, but no drizzle. As my daughter had taken our car, I set out on my scooter, heading for the function, convincing myself that it would not rain till I reached the auditorium. If I reached dry to the venue, I do not mind getting wet on my way back. It is still fun to soak in rains. A chance to bathe in pure water.
As I rode a kilometre on my way to the function, the sky turned very dark. The cloud patterns told me that it would rain in a few minutes. It would be foolish to go further because I would not be able to attend the function with dripping clothes. I wove a string of reasons and justifications to return home. After five minutes I was, sipping hot coffee at home, self-prescribed for the weather.
Then I started peeping out of the windows to see if it drizzled, went up the terrace to feel rain drops on my bald head … every five to ten minutes. And lo! I could have been in the auditorium when not a drop of rain fell on the ground yet. I watched the skies every few minutes for the next couple of hours until the time I would have reached home after the program. No sign of rain though the clouds spread a canopy over my area. This was grossly unfair. I felt cheated by the rain for not pouring. Having lost an opportunity of the evening, it would have been a solace if it had rained and proved my predictions right!
When I wake up at five in the morning, if it is raining I blame the weather though I am secretly happy for the opportunity to miss the morning walk. The blame is not on me, and I carry no guilt. I can hang it on an excuse, naming it a reason.
I would prepare a set of expected questions and learn the answers. I worked hard, with focus. Is it not unfair if the teachers don’t include all or at least some of those questions in the paper?
Caught up in traffic on my way to the railway station, I curse the fate and also hope that the train would be delayed and I would board. When they are often late, why not this day for my sake? If I make it to the railway platform on time and the train has not arrived yet, how bad of the train! Could they ever be on time? I forget the traffic jam and my prediction of my own delay in reaching the railway station and anxiety about possibly missing the train.
A decade ago I invested in a few shares. For about a year I eagerly monitored their prices, prided myself for the wise investments when the prices of some shares rose and blamed the specific companies whose share prices went South. ROI in one company rose 30 times. A year later the company was bankrupt. I have now left it to chance for the investment to grow or shrink. I can blame the economy or take a philosophical stand that gains and losses do not affect me.
Blame is a potent tool. It is fun to blame others – people and systems. It can guard us against accountability and guilt. Take care that it does not boomerang.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” — Mahatma Gandhi