Wednesday, 26 December 2007

On an Odyssey...

This NYT article has been much talked about and quoted by a lot of people. And the new buzz word is ‘odyssey years’.

The first time I heard the word, I visualized a twenty somebody sitting in a space craft and orbiting the earth wondering where his next stop will be. Okay, I know I am weird. Truth be told I can see myself sitting in that space craft! And I don’t know what my next stop will be.

By definition an Odyssey person is one who switched careers (I did from software engineer to journalist), has no plans of ‘settling down’ (the thought scares me) and has no clear sense of direction. That’s because I want to do a lot of things in the given time frame.

In my ideal world I would be writing, reading, doing photography, traveling, meeting people, learning a new language, learning about different cultures, making documentaries and studying. I manage to do a bit of all but not to my hearts contents. I refuse to be put in a box and be labeled. I hate getting stifled. And I would absolutely detest if I had to do the same thing everyday.

A lot of people would put this as ‘not been focused about career’. My only reply to them is what are their dreams? Did they remain dreams? If their answer is yes then they have wasted their life doing what was expected of them not what they wanted to do. You live this life once. How can you let go of it? How can you go through it with nonchalance or defeat? I think that is the scarier place to be in than not knowing your exact career path.

As the sunscreen song says:
Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life.
The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives.

I am not 22, just a bit older than that but that doesn't matter. Why should I be eighty and look back and say I wish I could have done this differently?

Somehow I have never liked straight lines. I could never colour inside the lines. I often asked – why is brinjal purple? Why not green? Who decided this colour should be called purple? Why is A the first letter of the alphabet? Why not C? Who made these rules? Why should I follow them? That should have been an indication of how I would turn out! Back to the point. I hate walking down a regular path. I like the road less travelled.

But to contradict my self, I have never taken giant leaps of faith, that’s just not me. I take small leaps, and I almost always land on my feet. The few times I fell down, I scraped my knees, got up and walked on. I think I will slowly get where I want to be. I have eyes firmly focused on it. I am slowly working on my career and my dreams side-by-side.

And the wise old people who didn’t know which bracket to put me in, now have one called ‘Odyssey Years’. It’s not something they would be happy about. Good Indian girls don’t do ‘these things’. But at least I am living my life as opposed to going through the motions of it.

I am definitely on an odyssey, a journey - called life. And of course I have no idea why I wrote this post!


On a completely different note, I came across this interesting forward at Vrij's blog. Do read it.


moai said...


You have no Idea why you re writing this? Believe me, they do and it s carrier oriented writing they have done.

After the X generation, the O generation.

They have found some self satisfying answer to economics masters to explain the mess modern economics do to young generations.

Young I have no job for you so go away is not politicaly correct. Politicaly correct is: It was so hard to find a job that I decided to quit for some time.

It is very efficient: Youngster think about introspection before puting the blem on we who knows how world goes.

Go grab your stuff useless and hit the road. O O O Odyssey Boy.

It reminds me of french poetry; it starts:

"Heureux qui, comme Ulysse, a fait un beau voyage"

Very, highly moralistics.

I am not on an Odyssey, the world turn without me. I am not on any Ulysse (odusseus) or Argonaut trying to find an Ithaque.

Odusseus was a warrior, a conquistador and a collonialist and has the same technics that Alexandros the Great as far as child are concerned.

As I read myself I feel like doin something I am not good at: Politics. No, I am just on depression and modern economics knows that depressives have higher consumption than non.LOL LOL LOL

I have just finished a book from Jacques Prevet:" HebdRomadaire". Surrealistics. He was not affraid from labels, he collected them and made patchwork out of them.

Did I write all this ? Hu ??? At least it is not business oriented for sure.

Prasad said...

hhhmmmmmmm mayb therez a reson tht i read this on my 26th b'day!!! nd oh in my ideal worl...i'd b sipping whisky in a island wit lotsa girls...nd yes tht needs a lot of money but surely will happen whn um a billioner! :DDDDDD

nd oh well i sorta lived my dreams this year....mayb i shouldcall it the year of the trips!! i travelled more than i should to a lot of places tht i shouldnt ;) nd yes um lookin fwd to doin it all again to new places next year!! :DDDD

um not even sure if my comment is related to ur post....will read again nd c! :P

Vrij said...

Well.. sometimes me too has the same feelin.. of chucking a lot of the routine work that I do and getting to do something adventurous and interesting!

Sumit said...

Hey NG,

Sorry was a bit tied up to visit ur blog or mine...

Came here to say Happy New Year 2008.

Best wishes to you and your family.

Cheers !!

Kamesh said...

Hi N :)

Sorry couldn't reply to ur SMS.. Hv been slogging at work for the last two days.. couldn't catch up with anyone.

First of all, here's wishing u and ur dear ones a Very Happy and Prosperous 2008!

Hv gone thru ur post.. but will comment later.. will catch up with some sleep for another tough day ahead..

will catch up with u soon.

Take Care :)

n.aka.zephyr said...

Je suis desloee pour not replying earlier….
I don’t know if it is putting the blame on someone else or not… that is a big question
Maybe the beau voyage was worth all the effort…
If I had to collect labels, would put them in a box and when I have collected all of them, I would stand on a cliff and let the wind blow them in all directions… coz this zephyr cant be bound by anything if she doesn’t want to :D
p.s: happy new year :)

n.aka.zephyr said...

Hi Pras
Wishing u a very happy belated b’day and a happy new year!! Maybe if u were a son of billionaire you would have been in your ideal world :D :D
And what kind of places did you visit that shouldn’t have?? Hmmm…… :P :P

If chucking was so easy half the world wud be unemployed and that would make this world a difficult place to live in….

n.aka.zephyr said...

Hey Vrij,
I can imagine you travelling in Indian trains if you chucked your regular routine work…. :)

Maybe you cud be a train-o-dentist… work while travelling? That wud be cool :D

n.aka.zephyr said...

Hey Sumit,
No a problem… der aaye durust aaye :)
Happy new year to u as well!!
Hope u have a great year ahead….
Cheers and TC!

n.aka.zephyr said...

Hey Kamesh,
Arrey… working so hard??? Relax a bit…
If u start the year working so hard.. u wud be doing it thru the year… And that can’t be a good thing :D
Wishing u a very happy and prosperous new year!!!
Take care.. will definitely catch up sometime… :)

moai said...

Happy New Year
Bonne Annee
mes meilleurs voeux
santé, bonheur, prosperite

moai said...

Hello again,

you are right: puting the blem on somebody is excessive. It reminds that there is no demand that stands today. And it is true.

I will go on introspection again.

n.aka.zephyr said...

You are making me think too much...Lol
I need to introspect too! :)

Vrij said...

Train-o-dentist.. that wud be awesome!

n.aka.zephyr said...

I know!!!!!
:D :D