Monday, August 17, 2009

Goodbye my dear Sammy Dog...

Samantha "Sammy Dog" Das
August 2000 - August 16, 2009

A prayer for my beloved greyhound, Sammy

Oh dear lord, you have been so kind to me and everyone close to me. You have protected me from harm, helped provide me with abundant love, health, education and sustenance. You have provided me a lovely family, a loving home, and all of the possessions anyone could ever hope for. For a majority of the past decade, you have blessed me, my family, and my friends with the love and affection of one of your servants. Our dear Sammy Dog, who you lent us for nine years, has gone back home to you. Please care for her in her new home as you did in her old one. Please pass along the following few words to her:

Goodbye, my sweetheart Sammy Dog. You picked me at the animal shelter all those years ago. I knew so little about greyhounds back then. You walked right over to me, and instantly but silently asked me to look no further. And I never did. You have constantly been by my side, patiently waiting for me to come home, and expressing the kind of unconditional love only you could provide. Through professional turbulence and personal turmoil, you always gave me your kind and compassionate support. You never complained, never doubted, never acted in anger. You just loved.

Your grandma, grandpa, all your friends around the world and I will miss you. I am forever grateful to you for making me a kinder, better person. I love you. Goodbye.

Om Shanti. Shanti. Shanti.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A bedtime thought for May 12th...

A little perspective...
Mumbai, India

Most of you who know me and have been in touch recently are aware of why today was not one of my better days.

I spent the day at work -- thinking a lot about the direction in which my life appears to be going. On the one hand, I have a job I really enjoy for a company I like, my family is generally happy and healthy (knock on wood), and I have yet to really go in want of something I really desire in life (let's leave out, for a moment, the over the top fanciful items like the Gulfstream). On the other hand, the past few years have seen enough stress (the economic downturn of '01, the crazy exit from my previous employer, etc.) to cause me to lose more hair than has unmercifully already fallen, the long term performance of my overall investment portfolio remains anemic and pathetic, and I have yet to find success in relationships. The analysis that I ran through my head all had me feeling much worse for myself than perhaps would be warranted by a rational review. Yet, I left work and headed home this evening feeling like I had been defeated. I felt that my most recent life failures had left me an unfortunate and unusually unlucky man. A sad soul, lost, even if temporarily.

This evening, as I entered by bedroom to prepare for bed, I remembered a thought I wanted to share with all of you . Only a few hours before, I had returned home through the dusty streets of Mumbai in my comfortable German car. Yes, this was the car that I recently purchased because the late model Japanese car it replaced had "no soul," in my oft repeated opinion. This was the car I had purchased to help myself enjoy my life more.

My housekeeper was waiting for me to arrive home before leaving for the evening. As I took my blazer off, she asked rather meekly, "Sir, is it OK if I take the pillow you had thrown away home with me tonight." I remembered back to yesterday, when I had thrown away a spare pillow that had gathered a touch of mold. "This isn't safe at all," I had wondered while promptly discarding the pillow. As I wondered why would she could possibly want a moldy pillow, she told me about an old woman without any pillows that she was going to see. "She would really appreciate it, sir," my housekeeper continued. Lest she upset me for re-using something I had thrown out without my permission, she had asked. While suddenly feeling guilty for having thrown out something that perhaps many view as a luxury here, I quickly added another pillow to my housekeeper's bag to take over to this old pillow-less woman I would likely never meet.

The story I have just recounted has no real purpose, plot, or punchline. However, it did give me enough pause to ponder the fact that during a day when all the fancy material goods that surround me could not buy me a simple smile, a moldy pillow I had discarded would provide someone much less fortunate than me exactly the smile that had eluded me all day.

It is perhaps important, in these lives we lead, to take a step back and place our lives in perspective on occasion. It is with the perspective gained from a moldy pillow that I sign off tonight. And yes, I go off to bed finally with that simple smile on my face.

Good night everyone.

- Beej

Monday, January 19, 2009

Bev & Barry from Shooters Bar, Calangute, Goa

Bev & Barry from Shooters Bar, Calangute, Goa

I have finally located traces of Bev and Barry from Shooters Bar in Calangute. After stopping at Shooters over a period of several months asking for Bev and Barry, the owners, and being told that they were still not back from their travels, I began to suspect the worst... Had the pair left Goa for new adventures? Alas, after a bit of internet research (ok, fine, a quick google effort), I have located the pair's blog. For all of you who have accompanied me to Shooters for a shot of something strong and tasty, here's a link to the pages of the couple, who are apparently back to traveling for a bit. Stop in to their blog and say hello!