Choosing perfect pots and pans



To some, moving houses come as naturally as shedding skin to snakes. I admire the former's ability to wrap themselves with the new and blend into established territories like they have always belonged. I think of myself as someone who craves for newness but equally loath to part with the familiarity. The uncertainty of the foreign fills me with apprehension as well as anticipation. Fitting in has never been my favourite activity and I wonder if disparate elements can be fused together to create an agreeable flavour.

As I prepare myself to detach myself from the veneer of my home, I spend my time mentally stripping it of the memories it holds. I gather my belongings, the collectibles, the memorabilia that speak of the many travels, a shared life with my family, and a keen love for all things colourful and antique. In my head, I imagine various empty houses, not mine, where they will be placed to recreate an environment I call home.

I care less for the polished white interiors that gleam of a perfection I’m afraid to touch. I crave for warm hues to intertwine their fingers with the cracks in the wall winning me over with their conspiratorial smile. For, they are witness to our secrets, our laughter, our worries, and our decisions. I like to meander in long corridors, tracing out the dust collected on the frames of our candid photographs hung in random order. I allow the vacant spaces to be filled before they are infused with the aroma of love, laughter, coffee, and marinated with a mixture of friends-new and old, of mindless banter and serious debates.

Sometimes you have to give up the labour of love because it’s time for new birth pains. And yet, at other times, the creations do not turn out as intended; much like my trysts with cooking in the initial years of my wedded life. Armed with all the right ingredients, I’d try to add the flavours one by one as I remembered my mother doing it for years. Yet, the result would be vastly off. I had once lamented to her about how my cooking does not taste like hers although I use her spices and follow her recipes. She smiled, her eyes twinkling with a secret she was about to reveal. “Sometimes, the pans and pots are not right!” I looked on incredulously. “Yes,” She continued in a tone that meant she wasn’t joking. “It takes some experience to know that a shallow pan is usually the culprit behind curry mishaps and that a pot of sterner mettle is the best accomplice to dish out that perfect biryani. Sometimes, our love and energy need to find the right home to create the ambience we are seeking.”

As my thoughts meander, my mother’s words seem to ring with newfound meaning. I’m fuelled by a new surge of enthusiasm as I look forward to making newer connections and friendships. I’ve been wary of the latter as I find myself cocooning into a space that very few people are able to enter. I make acquaintances but I’m careful in choosing my friends. Growing up, I'd always worried about the kind of impressions I made on people. I hesitated before asking for help for I worried about imposing myself. Social gatherings had me looking on from the fringes, waiting for a smile, a nod or acknowledgment before I extended my own hand. Not surprisingly, I was never a part of any cliques.

I later went on to experiment with my true nature and feelings many a time until they found a solid home in the hearts of a handful of friends that are almost my shadow now. They have my back as I have theirs at all times, good and bad. Yet, setting aside these, I’ve failed to recreate the delicacy of friendship. I have fewer friends today than in my younger years and cliques are as elusive as ever. Despite my best intentions, I’ve ended up burning my fingers or licking the vestiges of friendships gone sour and bitter. However, today, I’m content with knowing that my methods weren’t incorrect.

It’s all about choosing the perfect pots and pans. 

****

12 comments:

  1. Beautifully written Uma. So true. Changes/moves can be heart wrenching and inviting at the same time. Good luck with choosing the right pots and pans!
    I could totally connect with the point on being out of cliches and being selective about friends. Am a replica there!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had a feeling you and are similar in many ways :)Thanks a lot, Aarthy!

      Delete
  2. I loved the poetic way to the writing. It almost flowed finding its way. Coming to the story that you shared and how it related to moving, you got a good lesson there. Beautiful piece!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Parul. Glad you liked it :)

      Delete
  3. I have moved so many times. It's hard, although it was much more difficult before the internet - now, at least, it's easy to stay in touch with friends! It makes moving a lot less lonely. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, the Internet and social media has made it easier to stay in touch. Thank you, Stacie!

      Delete
  4. The first purchase I made when I was divorcing was a new set of pans -- ones I chose, ones I wanted to keep forever. Ones that were mine and mine alone. I'm pretty happy with them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you found your perfect set of pans! :)

      Delete
  5. You set a lovely, nostalgic mood, and I really like the way you used your real-life experience with pots and pans as a metaphor. The first half of the essay and the second seem unconnected, somehow, but both parts are interesting stories. I'd love to see each one developed separately.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for your comment, Christine. I'm glad to hear about the parts that worked in this piece. In hindsight, I can see the gaps between both the stories. This is something Rowan mentioned in her feedback too. I'll try to work on these as separate pieces.

      Delete
  6. Loved your flow of words.

    The aversion to change and the hesitation in making new friends: I can definitely relate to both.

    Glad you followed me on Twitter and I found your blog today

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot, Namratha. I'm glad to follow you too :)

      Delete

Would love to hear from you :-)
Also, please click the subscribe by Email link below the comment form to get follow-up comments to your inbox..