Well, 2021 has been quite a year for everyone! As things started to seem better with the pandemic, the 2nd wave had rattled the World and India! From lives of successful rich celebrities to the poorest, it spared none! But amid all the grievances, life is about seeing through the nicer things and marching forward!
Talking about myself, it has been a package of a year that can be split into exactly two on the calendar. If not exciting, the first half of the year was a fair one.
- I led a group of hikers after a long hiatus due to Covid. Made new friends from travel.
- I was told that I inspired people to explore the world (I don’t know how :P) and received surprise gifts from my readers.
- My blog performed well (in fact, the best in 10 years!)
- My first e-book was published (Click here to buy it).
- I completed a course on ‘Ancient history and Architecture of India’
- I joined classes to learn ‘Yakshagana’, something that was long wished for.
As the calendar pages turned to July, it brought with it a flip in the normalcy of life. A change in job role, a change in office location and a lot of changes in the home atmosphere! It has been a feeling of just drifting along with the wind, for this LostLander. Six months went by without being able to write a single page of content. The only good part was that I resumed regular office and with it, came a lot of Business travel. Although I was paranoid about resuming air-travel after nearly a year, the change was so important to keep me sane!
There is less to write about this year and so, let me share some of the memorable images that social media brought to me.
Tokyo 2020 happened in 2021! and this was a golden year for India at the Olympics where it outperformed itself with its first athletic gold and the overall highest number of medals so far!
• While the women’s hockey team became an inspiration to crores of Indians, their individual stories reflected the dreams of several girls who wished to break the societal stereotypes.
• The men’s hockey on the other hand, were a jubilant bunch with a medal that India was devoid of for 4 decades. Here’s an image of a tribute by the goalkeeper of Indian football (Gurpreet Singh Sandhu) to the goalkeeper of Indian hockey (P.R. Sreejesh) for his game saving stop of the last goal in the medal winning match.
• Oh, the beautiful women raised in the cradle of my motherland, you are all wonderful. The first athlete to open the tally book for India at Tokyo 2020 was a woman. A woman who became an inspiration right on the opening day of the Olympics, still has me in awe. In spite of carrying so much success in her belt that could weigh her down, how could a person be so grounded and humble? And it was a sense of personal honour for me as I shared the aisle and some warm conversations with Ms. Mirabai Chanu on one of the flights.
• While we discuss accomplished people being grounded, it brings memories of Late. Puneet Rajkumar. Having shared the same neighborhood for a few years, it was common for me to bump into him every other day. Without carrying any air of superiority around his head, this man did not fail to smile at every person he came across, known and unknown. Only when he was gone, did we Kannadigas know that our movies too were watched by millions in faraway countries. I was taken by surprise when a person I met in a Nepali village told me how big a loss it was with this star’s passing away.
• And, this was definitely NOT the way 2021 had to end. The passing away of India’s Chief of Defense Staff along with other decorated soldiers was the most unfortunate. So much for keeping the safety of the world’s 2nd largest population as his only duty, let the top man of India’s defense rest in peace. Although, I have never met this man in person, the loss felt very personal. News has it that he shared a special bond with Kodagu, my hometown.
If you have made it this far on my blog, let me tell you that, having good ‘Mental health’ is a thing. Feeling low or depressed is absolutely normal and can happen to anyone. It is important to recognize this earlier and to reach out to people at the right time. Reach out to help someone or reach out to seek help. If at any point, any of you feel the need to reach out to just someone- do hit me up! I don’t know how I can help your situation, but I shall certainly do my best to hear you out and guide you to the right source of help!