I don't know what captured my spirit today afternoon but I started feeling very melancholic. If there were one dialogue that suited me well (as it has suited me perfectly many times), it was Antonio's opening words from 'The Merchant of Venice': In sooth I know not what why I am so sad.
There's one thing that I do most often when I'm feeling a little low.
I buy books.
Most people I know have often heard this story. It is a story which I'm pretty proud of. It dates back to the time when I was in college and had a job which paid me a princely salary of 3,000 rupees a month. One fine day, I was in a similar mood and I dragged my good friend Ravi to College Street. We spent the entire day browsing through bookstores, carefully peering into musty second-hand books, squatting at road-side stalls which sold books we wouldn't have found in any organized retail book stores, had our lunch at road-side dhabas and yes, we had coffee at the Indian Coffee House. Anyway, by the time we two returned home, we both held a carton full of books in each of our hands (that's four cartons of books; for those readers who are either bad at basic mathematics or have been too confused by my style of writing). All in all, we'd spent Rs. 18,000 on a combination of new and second-hand books.
Finding myself in a similar mood today, I switched off my cell after office and left for the Landmark Store at Forum. These are what help me beat my melancholic mood:
1. No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy
2. Alexander: Book One - Child of a Dream by Valerio Massimo Manfredi
3. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
4. Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri
5. The McKinsey Way by Ethan M. Rasiel
6. Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh