Of New Years and Notebooks

WordPress tells me that on this day 4 years ago I registered this blog. Well I must congratulate this corner of the internet for putting up with me for this long and here’s to many more such years. I also realize that this is my first post of the year.

As is customary, I have begun another New Year of my life as if its a brand new notebook, fresh and clean and tightly wrapped in plastic with the price tag label firmly stuck on. Waking up on the morning of January 1, 2017 was like tearing away that plastic and lovingly caressing the pages of the year yet to begin. I love the metaphor of the notebook not just because I have too many of them (which I do, see Exhibit A) but also because I feel like there is something magical in the way turning over a leaf gives you a whole new page to work with. Its like getting a fresh start with every new page. I believe that every new day is exactly like that too. No matter what happens today, happy or sad, when you wake up in the morning tomorrow, you get to whole new day to play with.

Exhibit A


Now just like my many notebooks, I also have different kinds of days. Some days are like a perfect daily planner; everything neatly scheduled according to the time slots in the day; notes where they belong at the bottom of the page; reminders checked off as tasks are completed and maybe a little doodle for a bit of whimsy. Other days however are like a plainly ruled notebook, which tells you to chart a path just for you but with the lines acting like the safety harness in a bungee jump. You are free to make lists or write poetry or take notes; add page numbers or don’t; add the date or not; and generally have a more interesting page than that of the daily planner. There are yet other days where the notebook has thick and creamy pages with no lines on them and have this aura of elegance about them. These are the ones that really dare you to live; invite you to colour outside the lines; and boldly illustrate your purpose. These are also the pages that scare me the most. I’m so scared to make the wrong mark and cause a blemish and not a perfect paint stroke that I often leave the page completely blank, just staring at it wistfully and wishing something to materialize on it. Even when I hesitatingly go forth and make my mark, I always look back to that page and see something that doesn’t quite match up to the imagination of the page that I had. I’m glad to say the feeling is mostly momentary, I don’t regret much in my life.

My notebooks like me are combinations of optimism and realism. They are of different sizes, colours, themes, paper quality and what goes into them varies quite a bit as well. I think I almost treat them like my pets, like others do their dogs or cats. I preserve these pages over years and years. I rarely finish a notebook except at work. I write on each of them at different times depending on what kind of day it has been. I get super excited when I am in stores that sell notebooks, and I have to exercise a tremendous amount of restraint not to buy every notebook that catches my eye and gladdens my soul. Every time a new notebook excites me, I keep myself sober thinking how my poor notebooks at home must feel neglected. I treated myself to my usual annual notebook for the year and so far I have written in it at least once a week and hope to continue doing so. This blog of course has also been a kind of a notebook just with better images and navigation options. It has also made me think carefully about what I write since it’s not just some scribble that only I will see. Crafting each sentence, reading and re-reading the post to make it sound just right has given me many hours of happiness and for that I am grateful. I hope to see more of more of it this year.

Until next time,


PS # Yes, I spent time looking for the perfect spot in my house and then setting up for a photo shoot of my notebooks.