Dhobi ka kutta.. Neither here, nor there.

activation energy barrier

For me, music has been the easiest way of prepping myself up. To start any activity, requires an activation energy. And music helps me overcome that barrier. Whether is going to the gym, or heading in to the lab for setting up a long experiment – once you plug-in those headphones, music guarantees to take me over that hill.

What a shower is to my body, music is to my mind.

When I was in India, I used to listen to Hindi songs. And when I was down, I used to listen to Naats to motivate me back up.

When I came to the US, I shifted to English songs. I went through my initial phases of  Kanya West, Maroon 5, Aerosmith. Then I discovered Pink Floyd – which is not the best kind of music to inspire you. And my last phase of Yanni and some Mozart.

And now I’ve lost my taste for music.

I would assume that my music vocabulary would’ve opened up and now I would find joy in all kinds of music. On the contrary, I shuffle from song to song, unable to connect.

Most Hindi music, with the exception of A. R. Rahman and Jagjit Singh, I find too noisy. It’s too fast, and the lyrics don’t make sense any more.

I remember at some point in my life, I made a conscious effort to shift to English music. My goal was to improve my English language skills, especially my pronunciation. So, even though I didn’t get English songs, I would listen to them on loop, and slowly I started picking up the lyrics. But in that pursuit, I seem to have lost the connection with Hindi music.

In Hindi, there is a saying, ‘Dhobi ka kutta, na ghar ka, na ghat ka’, which loosely translated means, Neither here, nor there.

That’s what I feel like sometimes..

Neither here, nor there..

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  • YS

    I used to feel like that all the time: not really part of my family’s culture, and not really part of my country’s culture. And when I lived abroad it was even worse. It’s hard. Being ‘not quite there’ never seems to go away, but sometimes you can learn to love it, and instead of being neither, you learn to be both. Hang in there, you’ll feel it.

    • http://bhamla.com Saad Bhamla

      I hope so. I’ll tell you in a couple of years if I make it.

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