My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.

"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times

"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine

"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll

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29 April 2009

Languid and Portishead = languid-y, Portishead-y post

A way to define my life right now? All I can think of is hot and sticky. Not to mention the vague queasiness that has overcome me ever since I got back a couple of days ago.

So, here I sit in the warmth of my room, the fan making a lot of noise but not really doing anything else and my stomach full. Shortly, I head out to do work type things, paying an Airtel bill is foremost and then other writing stuff. I AM boring these days, there's nothing to do, nothing except to sit around and think and talk and think some more about the heat, heat, HEAT.

Glorybox by Portishead is in the background, and the melody pretty much defines how I am right now. I'm so tired. I know there are things to look forward to--parties, and future trips and boyfriends returning and moving in together, and yet, all I can think about is the queasiness and the fact that at 3.04 pm my eyelids are heavy, my stomach turgid, my mind a blank slate. All there is is heat.

Why can't the days be shorter? Why can't all the time be 3 am, when I am awake and cool? How can I shake this damn insomnia?

Does it ever feel to you like you're moving at the speed of light but when you look down at your feet you're in exactly the same place?

Delhi, even three days ago, seems like a light year away. I have friends there, and yet, and yet, in Delhi I stand still. In Bombay, things move past me fluidly. I can choose to go with the flow, I can choose to grip the arms of my chair and not be budged. I can watch the annual exodus of people leaving the city or I can participate. I am a broke, young writer. I am not so very young anymore.

My drink of choice is vodka with soda, lime juice, salt and one green chilli, sliced through, so it fizzes the soda, so it prickles up your nose, so you can't taste the vodka. It is a good drink. Specially coz you can't even taste the vodka. I smoke endless cigarettes, but in the end it all balances out because I eat salad and I get fresh air. We need to quit smoking, says JC, it's going to kill us. And I nod and smile, but I love the taste and feel of a cigarette, I love how it fits between my fingers, I love the smell mixed with perfume on my skin, I love the way it fills all gaps, I love how it lends itself to drinking, to eating, to coffee. What can be more perfect than a cup of coffee and a brand new packet of fags?

And I have decided and my "gang" has agreed--did you know I had a gang? neither did I--that our future home, JC's and mine will be the future adda also. He has a projector (which needs to be repaired) we have music, we have us, who are excellent, we are fun, we are going to be super domestic, we are going to save money. I've never had an adda house before.

Now I should go, since you've seen my internal monologue of aimlessness. I'm holding nothing back, this is a very accurate representation of the voice in my head. Along with vague guilt that despite a bombardment of ads, I have not registered to vote in Bombay and so will have no say in the future government. Even though I'm pretty sure that the party I support will win. They SHOULD win. They're the lesser of two evils.

And now I go to my bucket bath and to go meet Crocodile Dundee, for whom I am already a little bit late.


  1. smoke gives a feeling of power, fire at the tip of one's fingers - Dagny Taggart

  2. life usually looks like going nowhere, whenever u stand still and see, but when u look at it in a positive frame, the same life turns good. i am talking too much philosophy.

  3. After such a long time eM, you've written like yourself. Even though this post has none of the... er, ingredients (?) that make a post eM-ish, this is such an eM post.

    How darn, I'm rambling!

  4. Vodka can combine well with salt & chilli but why would anyone avoid heavenly taste of vodka

    True nothing can be better than coffee & a new packet of Silk Cut

  5. @All You People Who Smoke:

    Smoking Helps Reduce Weight ... One Lung At A Time !!!

  6. I don't know about Bombay, but the heat in Delhi is sapping! I'm almost melting away :( And yess a cup of coffee and a brand new pack of Malboro Lights, Ah what bliss! :)

  7. This is an excellent piece of writing!

    Piece of advice: smoke, but don't set your lungs on fire. ;)

  8. Lol, I'm suffering from insomnia too, so when you find a cure for yours, let me know ^_^

    At any rate, which party do you support?

  9. I know what u feel while smoking....its not just an addiction...its also teh charm...and romance of smoke that doesnt let me completely let go of it....

  10. Neither did I, but hey, a lot changes in four months right?!

  11. My friend, everybody loves cricket. And you do too. So, enjoy the game you love so much.

  12. I know this would sound stale..but i thought u kicked ur habit of smoking. Heard and saw you speaking about it on one of the NDTV talk shows.

    JC sure is right about it. Try drinking gallons of water. It works in removing the crave for nicotine. It works good to beat the summers as well. One remedy..two advantages :)

  13. you smoke...personal choice...But dont turn the act of smoking into poetry or something!!!
    Mind you...there could be young impresionable readres here who might just start somking for the romantic notion you have presented here!!!!


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