BMTC Girl’s Rules


I’ve been meaning to write this for a while.

Everyday, for the past 3 years, I travel by BMTC bus from my home to college and back.  As I write this, I realize that no matter how much I grumble and mutter about the hassles of using public transport, Bangalore actually does have a pretty efficient bus system that many people do not take advantage of, or are simply not aware of.  I have come to cherish my bus journeys everyday, I think it really has given me a better understanding of people in general. I see (and interact with ) so many people on the bus, some ace bus travelers and some awkward ones.

So I thought maybe I should write about some rules that I personally follow on the bus, which have helped me make these journeys a little more successful and less stressful!

Be warned, these are restricted to bus travel within Bangalore and are strictly based on my personal experiences and may not apply to everybody!

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So this is a LONG over due post! Anyway, a bunch of us from class got to attend the 15th International Film Festival of Kerala held in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala in December. Although the festival was from the 10th of December till the 17th, we got permission to attend it only till the 14th :(

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I love that I do not take things lightly

An excerpt from Eve Ensler’s book “I Am an Emotional Creature: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World”. Thank you Gaurav for making me listen to this!

I love being a girl.
I can feel what you’re feeling
as you’re feeling it inside
the feeling
I am an emotional creature.
Things do not come to me
as intellectual theories or hard-shaped ideas.
They pulse through my organs and legs
and burn up my ears.
I know when your girlfriend’s really pissed off
even though she appears to give you what
you want.
I know when a storm is coming.
I can feel the invisible stirrings in the air.
I can tell you he won’t call back.
It’s a vibe I share.

I am an emotional creature.
I love that I do not take things lightly.
Everything is intense to me.
The way I walk in the street.
The way my mother wakes me up.
The way I hear bad news.
The way it’s unbearable when I lose.

I am an emotional creature.
I am connected to everything and everyone.
I was born like that.
Don’t you dare say all negative that it’s a
teenage thing
or it’s only only because I’m a girl.
These feelings make me better.
They make me ready.
They make me present.
They make me strong.

I am an emotional creature.
There is a particular way of knowing.
It’s like the older women somehow forgot.
I rejoice that it’s still in my body.

I know when the coconut’s about to fall.
I know that we’ve pushed the earth too far.
I know my father isn’t coming back.
That no one’s prepared for the fire.
I know that lipstick means
more than show.
I know that boys feel super-insecure
and so-called terrorists are made, not born.
I know that one kiss can take
away all my decision-making ability
and sometimes, you know, it should.

This is not extreme.
It’s a girl thing.
What we would all be
if the big door inside us flew open.
Don’t tell me not to cry.
To calm it down
Not to be so extreme
To be reasonable.
I am an emotional creature.
It’s how the earth got made.
How the wind continues to pollinate.
You don’t tell the Atlantic ocean
to behave.

I am an emotional creature.
Why would you want to shut me down
or turn me off?
I am your remaining memory.
I am connecting you to your source.
Nothing’s been diluted.
Nothing’s leaked out.
I can take you back.

I love that I can feel the inside
of the feelings in you,
even if it stops my life
even if it hurts too much
or takes me off track
even if it breaks my heart.
It makes me responsible.
I am an emotional
I am an emotional, devotional,
incandotional, creature.
And I love, hear me,
love love love
being a girl.


I can write. I know I can. Sometimes its the easiest thing in the world, and sometimes the blank white screen is most intimidating. But when the words come, I know they are the right ones.

I trust the words that flow out, simply because there’s a reason why one was formed and another drifted off to be used later. I rarely edit what I write (not a good thing all the time) because then it isn’t me anymore, it isn’t me sitting in the same space as those words. We need to be on the same page literally, the words need to have the same importance as me creating them. Otherwise I kill their tiny little squiggly lives, like mosquitoes being squished.

I write for me, and I watch her write for adulation. Who gets it, then? He, who is forming all those ideas in her head? What is the difference between them. I can’t see it. Hypocrite I want to shout, but she wont hear me. Won’t listen. It’s only the sound of one voice that will spur her on.

So, my words and I, we will sit and wait.

And no, I do not have MPD.

The Textbook

About a week ago, I was looking for a book in my (rather dusty) cupboard when I found myself staring at a thick blue book. Pulling it out, I realised it was a Political Science text book I had bought in the 11th grade.

I didn’t need to flip through it to remember what I learnt. Political Science was quite simply one of my favourite subjects in school, one that I looked forward to quite eagerly. Initially, it was a bit draggish with learning about Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau (the “project” which divided the class into three groups – we still look at each other and say “hey, where you Hobbes or Rousseau?”), but then once I reached 12th grade, it was the subject that got me thinking about an issue throughout the day.

When I was younger, I sincerely believed all politicians studied Political Science before they became politicians. I imagined them all going to Politician College, their uniform being white kurta-dhoti, carrying thick politician text books. I believed they studied how to run the my country.

Today, I know better. I know that there is no Politician College. There are no thick politician books, and there definitely is no studying going on. Yet, today I went out and voted. Why?

Well there’s the usual argument – if you don’t vote, you don’t have the right to complain about the government. Also, what if I didn’t live in a democratic country? What if I lived somewhere where I had no *option* to vote for someone?

It’s a sad thought when I think about the number of eligible voters who have left the country to study/live somewhere else. Some of these people will never have the opportunity to vote in India, some might. But the point is, when I’m here, why shouldn’t I vote? Sure, getting hold of my Voters ID card was an exercise on its own, and it’s filled with mistakes (something I hope to get rectified before the next election) but after that, all I needed to do was walk over to the next street, show my ID, get my finger dabbed with ink and press a blue button.

Back to the Political Science book. I remember thinking this book was a god send during the boards, as it pretty much listed out everything I need from the exam point of view. But now I realise, those exam questions aren’t just exam questions do deal with once and forget about later. They reappear again and again, as questions voiced all over the country – What is democracy, why is it important? What are the basic duties of a political representative? What is a party manifesto, why is it necessary? What is secularism? What are vote bank politics?

I answered these questions on paper, and I learnt about fair and unfair election practices in a classroom, but I still see unfair practices around. I still see people asking for schools, electricity, employment oppurtunites, good roads and a decent sanitation system – things that I, and the rest of the world, deem as important to a citizen. So since I have one vote, and the opportunity to cast it independently, I vote in favour of these things.

Flying, in a sense

I love airports. It might have to do with the fact that I love flying, but I really do love airports.

I love sitting outside the ‘Arrival’ area, watching people. I know it’s creepy, in fact a lot of people could be wondering ‘Ok who is this creepy girl and why is she watching me’, but I really can’t help myself. I smile when I watch the two little hyper boys run towards their grinning grandparents, each little boy attempting to push the heavy baggage carts. I tear up (just a little) as I watch aging parents embrace the son they probably haven’t seen for while as he walks out, probably just off a flight from the US. I scoff at the all white netas, the ones nobody knows, as they walk out with folded hands looking for the garlands that wont greet them, hoping that somebody will notice the useless posse of harried looking PA’s around them, and maybe give them some importance.

But of all the things the scene that I love most to watch are the ones which involve the shy married/engaged couple, probably a husband returning from a business trip, as he catches sight of his wife, the self-conscious smiles, the words of greeting, and then surprising both of them, the arm slung across her shoulders pulling her into his embrace, as they make their way home.