I have been nominated for an award!

Trail-stained Fingers is less than a year old and the blog has already been nominated for a Liebster award by none other than Erin J Bernard, an essayist I immensely admire for her impeccable writing and sensitive exploration of subjects that affect the human consciousness.

liebster-award-logo1. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 29, and find line 4. What is the book and what does it say?

Incidentally, I’m reading an English translation of the Ramayana, an epic involving kings and Gods and an integral part of the Hindu religion. The book is called ‘Ramayana: The Game of Life’ by Shubha Vilas. Line 4 on page 29 says:

Deep gratitude. That’s what I feel towards the Gods for having allowed me to live and rule this long.

This book is teaching me a lot more than some self-help books have. If you set aside the religious and dated aspects of the story, there is a lot of wisdom that can be applied even today. And values such as character and humility are timeless – yet we forget, all too easily. A little reminder is always welcome.

2. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?

It would be at a peaceful village in the midst of an unfrequented woods; perhaps Matheran. But I’m not sure I’d be able to forgo the charms of the city. For that, perhaps, I’d prefer the art-soaked streets of Paris, the city of lovers, poets and disillusioned souls looking for some sign that beauty still exists. But truth be told, it doesn’t matter where I live as long as I have the right person with me, and the ability and means to travel whenever we fancy.

3. If you could change one thing about the world, what would you do?

I’d tip the scales in favour of good. I know the world is all about balance and there will be as much evil as there is goodness but right now, in the midst of all I see around me and all I read in the papers, I think the laws of the universe should bend a little and make way for more goodness.

4. Is the glass half empty or half full?

On bad days, it’s half empty and on good days, it’s more than full; it’s practically overflowing. I’m all about extremes. But I’ve been trying to indulge the bad days less and less, and compel myself to create a good day even on a dismal one.

5. When is the last time you ate a homegrown tomato?

I don’t think I’ve ever had one. Darn it, now I want to.

6. What did you want to be when you grew up?

A best-selling novelist. I always knew I wasn’t cut out for 9 to 5 jobs. My current situation is actually a 9 to 5 job but at least, it involves writing. But I yearn to fulfill my dream and be free of this thankless monotony.

7. What is your favorite time of the day?

Undeniably, the early morning. It’s that time of the day when the world is poised on the possibility of something miraculous; something that will change things forever, for the better. I believe it’s the time when if you listen hard enough, you can hear the Gods speak; through the whisper of the trees and the secret songs of the birds.

8. What inspires you?

Nature, books, TV shows, dance performances, songs, places, photographs. Any form of creative art and that includes this wide, wide world; a masterful painting that is ever alive and on the move. On occasions, people inspire me too – with their goodness, simplicity and innocence. And sometimes, passing remarks can set me thinking too.

9. What is your favorite childhood memory?

It’s nothing monumental but somehow, I always return to this one memory of driving back in the night with my father and sister after an invigorating evening at the swimming pool. I’d stick my nose out of the window and watch the glittering lights of the city pass by; I’d listen to the lovely song playing on the music system and I’d be sure, that I’d do something truly great with my life. I think it’s the pure conviction and bliss of that moment that draws me to it, again and again.

10. What three things in nature do you find most beautiful?

Mountains, forests and the sea. I love cities for their museums, theatres and culture. But it’s nature I turn to when I want to remember who I truly am.

11. Who are your 11 nominees?

I’ll confess – I don’t follow too many blogs regularly. I like stumbling upon new ones here and there and I don’t always return. But a few have managed to hold my interest and here they are (they are predominantly travel blogs because that’s the space I operate in and that’s what I’m most passionate about):

Shubham Mansingka at A boy who travels

Shivya Nath at The Shooting Star


Infinite Satori

Yashovardhan Bhatia

Damayanti at Daily w(rite)

Zahra at Peeping Jeans

Siddhartha Joshi at Sid the wanderer

Anuradha Goyal at Inditales

Revati and Charles Victor at Different Doors

Prathap Nair at The Sunlit Window

Liebster Award Rules

  • Thank and link to the nominator on your page.
  • Answer the following 11 questions provided by the nominator.
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 11 others for the award.
  • Post the Liebster Award rules in your acceptance post.

And now for 11 things you don’t know about me (whew this took a long time!)

  1. In the offline world, I can’t crack a joke to save my life. But I can do it in my writing. Sigh, humour, why do you elude me so?
  2. I am scared of everything. At the start. Then, I conquer them but boy is it difficult to start.
  3. A spirit seems to possess me when I’m in the ‘mood to write’. The kind of work I create – I can never consciously replicate it when I’m not ‘in the mood’.
  4. On most days, I’ll do anything to weasel my way out of social engagements. On others, I feel so lonely/bored that I want to meet every single friend I have.
  5. The person I am keeps changing and sometimes when I read my old posts, I feel like I don’t know that person any more.
  6. I get so damn impatient and irritable sometimes. Living in a crowded city like Mumbai doesn’t help. My magic anti-stress pill is a good book or a session of meditation.
  7. I love symmetry. I am always arranging random objects in a visually pleasing manner.
  8. I love gifting. Expressing mush doesn’t come easily to me; so gifts are a good go-between.
  9. I am in a relationship, for those who were itching to know. I love travelling with him and one day, I’d like to position this blog as a couple travelling blog.
  10. I can sing pretty well. But I have stage fear. Goodbye, fame.
  11. I constantly fear losing the people I love. I even fear the transient nature of life. Sometimes I imagine what it’d be like to not exist. Yes, I excel at being morbid.

I was nominated for this award in February 2015. Sorry Erin, for taking so long. I’m such a procrastinator. But this was fun. Nominees, get cracking!