It was a summery Sunday evening. I stood in my window, gazing at the twinkling city lights, sprawled over a great expanse. The roads were quiet, and the occasional sound of a car engine revving up the street was the only significant thing to be heard. Looking at the tall buildings afar, I stretched my vision upto its farthest point. And then I started thinking. Ten years ago, as a young girl of about 8-9 years, I used to stand in the same window, admiring the same city lights. My younger self used to make it a point to stand in the window, everyday for merely ten minutes or so. And here I was, looking outside my own window, like a stranger, unfamiliar with the view. The view hadn’t changed at all, except perhaps for a few buildings here and there. It was me who had grown. I was inevitably reminded of that young girl who used to stare at the night sky, each night and the joy she experienced in doing so. That’s when I thought. Life changes, doesn’t it? You change, your priorities change, the people around you change. The more you grow, life becomes more fast paced. You often forget to enjoy the journey while in pursuit of the destination. You start taking all the mundane things for granted but you realise their worth only when thay are no longer a part of your daily routine. And then this realization hits you, suddenly out of the blue. You realise that the age old dilemmas might have reached logical conclusions, but there are newer challenges to overcome and bigger obstacles to cross. And that is how you keep growing and materialising into newer versions of yourself, each day. They say that nothing changes day by day, but when you look back nothing is just the same. And at that point in time, I could truly feel this.



It was one of those days when I got time to ponder upon something that had been shunted to one corner of my mind for quite a long time. It so happens that we are so wrapped up in our routine and we tend to easily gloss over the intricacies and the minute aspects of the things that make us what we truly are. Run behind the big things- that’s what they tell us. But can’t we just-perhaps for some time- slow down a bit and look more closely at the smaller things?

There are almost a million things that go on daily in each of our lives. But when was the last time you stopped to actually think about something that only you yourself could fully appreciate? At times, it so happens that something just strikes a chord with you, something so deep and yet impeccably simple. I mean, anything as plain as a cup of hot tea on a wintry morning can make you feel happy for the entire day. 

We go on chasing happiness in every possible way we can. But the tiniest of things can leave us feeling satisfied and content. Isn’t this paradoxical?
Don’t all of us feel happy when our favourite song plays on the radio, even if we perfectly know that we can just plug in to Spotify to listen to it anytime? Doesn’t a beautiful sunrise spread a glow in our hearts everytime we feast our eyes upon it? Doesn’t a simple ‘how was your day’ fuel us to talk endlessly about random stuff? That’s just what it is. We get so attached to the things we like that it’s like we embed a part of ourselves into them.

Ever heard the gentle tinkling of your grandmother’s bangles? Or the chirping of a small bird in the early hours of the dawn? These might seem insignificant to some, but they can mean a lot to others. The more I think, the more clearly I realise that happiness is that thing which is hidden in the most unlikely places- all around us. It’s there in the cream on your coffee. In the smell of the pages of your recently bought book. In the messy notes and doodles in your class notebook. In the oldest of your dresses- those to which even you can’t explain so as to why you are so dearly attached. In the warmth of your favourite sweatshirt. In the late night brainstorming sessions with a close friend. In the loud laughs and conversations at the dinner table. In those quotes that you run through again and again, especially when you need them the most. Yes, these are often neglected but believe me, these are the things that complete us. And the best part is that no two individuals can ever share the same set of things that they have a personal connection with. This is what precisely defines the vibrancy in the human race. And it’s beautiful. It is exactly like a plethora of emotions that gets hooked onto every person associated with a feeling. All these trivial things sum up to portray what we, as individuals truly are. All these thoughts crossed my mind like a series of blurred images in just a few minutes. But I understood more firmly than ever, that it is the smallest of things that redefine what the big ones truly ought to be.
-Mugdha Deshpande

Even the butterfly was once a caterpillar.

Even the butterfly was once a caterpillar. He didn’t know what he would eventually become. Yes, he had a very trying time when he wasn’t at his best. His transforming phase wasn’t something that was admired by all. And yet, he didn’t give up. Do you think the caterpillar knew that he would one day become a beautiful butterfly, who would spend his days dancing on flowers? Surely not. And yet he went on. Isn’t this so relatable to us humans too? No one appreciates you when you are in a moulding phase. You have to face innumerable challenges the moment you wake up each day. There are some days when you are totally clueless about what’s going on. You are one big, confused bundle of threads, struggling and trying to figure out what you would become. Yes, sometimes challenges do seem endless. Sometimes things you want seem to be sailing out of your reach right in front of your eyes. And believe me, that is the most unexplainably painful feeling you can ever feel. But you have just got to trust that all this is simply a part of your developing period. There might be days when the extrovert in you turns into an introvert and avoids talking to people mainly because they question your choices to make you feel uncomfortable. Sometimes, all you need is to give yourself the generous amount of time that you deserve. Have faith and trust the process. I know all this might sound far-fetched when you are actually caught up in the middle of a storm. You have all the logic and critical thinking you need but you just can’t think logically. Everything just goes haywire. Minutes seem like hours, hours seem like days and you try in vain not to think too much, not to revolve in the same round circle again and again. But in spite of all the odds, you hang on there. You stand there, rooted to the spot with all the energy you can muster. And that is what makes things change. Slowly first, and then so rapidly that even you find it hard to comprehend them. It is your belief and grit that finally does what it has to do. The once terrible dilemmas reach logical conclusions. You discover what you really want. After days and days of incertitude, your brain finally finds its sorting algorithm and tries to place thoughts in an orderly way. Things begin to fall in place, magically like the pieces of a puzzle. Distorted tiles come together to form a mosaic. The abstract shapes begin to make sense. Shaky lines materialize into figures. And again, you are awestruck. You can’t do anything but just sit and stare and perhaps try to understand all that is happening quite suddenly. That is the moment when everything seems worth dodging all those obstacles that tried so hard to make you take a detour. You are fully aware that challenges are perpetual and getting through this one can gear you up for the next. And at this point in time, there is no one who can appreciate yourself more than you can, when you finally sail successfully through that intimidating storm. And that is when the caterpillar in you transforms itself into a butterfly.

-Mugdha Deshpande

Dear Eighteen..

Dear eighteen, 

Well, umm hi! To be honest, none of us knew what you would look like. And that’s what you were to us, a delusion. I literally thought that the world would look different once I was 18. And I’m sure most of us did think the same. But here we are, the world just the same and many of us flaunting the #Being18 and ‘Adulting vibes’ thing. We all turned 18 in just a day, but the more I ponder upon it, dear eighteen, you were always something so vast that it wouldn’t be possible to fit you in a span of twenty four hours ever. You make us realize of responsibilities each day. You propel us to stretch our horizons and discover something. But that’s the good part. Eighteen, let me be frank with you. Sometimes we do yearn to become small, with two ponytails, school bags on our shoulders and nothing to worry about, except perhaps homework. Also, there’s this question that occupies a big chunk of my head and it keeps nagging me. Am I mature enough? Looking back at the early teens, I definitely feel that I’ve come a long way. But then the idealistic picture of being 18 pops in the mind and I come to the conclusion that though I’ve changed for the good, there’s still a long way to go. But I’ll say this too. We definitely have learnt a lot. We’ve witnessed transitions in us that make us feel a tiny bit proud. We learnt to make decisions for ourselves, understood the fact that everyone has different choices and experienced what it was to passionately work for a goal. We learnt that there actually existed things like challenges and that they weren’t just a part of motivational poems. Conversations were steered to different, unexplored waters, from assignment submissions to driving license applications. Seemingly nonsense conversations materialized into deep life changing decisions. From seeing people around us change to ranting about some random stuff, from making new friends to realizing how the old ones are true gems and from debating over the uncertainties to concluding big dilemmas, each day, we all grow. We see people around us being happy on fulfilling their dreams. The people who were once studying under the same roof have been dispersed all around the globe, in pursuit of their dreams. And that’s something amazing. It is fascinating to see that we all have grown. There’s no doubt that everyone’s a tangled bundle of threads, trying to be better than they were yesterday. Yes, occasionally stumbling, falling ungracefully, but getting up all the same. Dear eighteen, there’s a plethora of emotions associated with you. But today I’ll tell you- you are beautiful just the way you are. Yes, you make me feel a little lost, but a lot found. Just be the same, always.

Yours very truthfully, 

A young adult


As the sun bids adieu to all earthlings,
And Lady night spreads out her magnificent shawl
Sequin like stars stud the deep dark sky
And they twinkle mischievously from afar.
Then quite suddenly above the horizon,
One senses the arrival of yet another captivist 
Rising majestically, glowing brighter and brighter
The moon makes his grand entry
At times a full opaline white beauty, 
At times a delicate small crescent 
However he might be it's always his presence that,
Marks the entire night's crescendo.
Bathing the city in his pearly moonlight,
Right from a small baby to an old man,
Enchanting each one of it's onlookers,
The moon creates a bond, 
He awakens an emotion so powerful. 
As he gracefully flaunts his centre stage position,
My mind can't help but wonder why 
He seems so near but yet is afar,
Why he's universal, yet feels like our own.
I think of the moon from each one's view,
Right from a poet's perspective 
To a space walker's eye
But the deeper I delve, the more that I ponder 
My mind just can't figure out so as to 
Why is every feeling connected to the moon so paradoxical?

-Mugdha Deshpande


Writing a long poem after a long time feels so good! This time I have used a different style, rather I’ve written this poem as a combination of the narrative as well as metaphorical style of writing. The girl in the poem symbolises each one of us and highlights how it is in human nature to get confused when you encounter an out-of-the-blue problem. But ultimately, what matters the most is not how befuddled you are, but how you overcome your problem by having faith, hope and the will to rise above the barrier. The quote ‘May the fireflies follow you where the butterflies do not’ inspired me to write this poem. So, read on!

Blue skies above her,
Springy grass beneath her toes,
Butterflies playing around, 
Surrounded by lush green meadows.
Her heart grinning broadly, 
No trace of any turmoil,
Sunshine kissing her beautiful face, 
As she trode on the soft soil.
With butterflies leading her way, 
And fluffy clouds overhead,
What could possibly go wrong?
Was all that her heart said.
But as she savoured her Dreamland, 
The sun started sinking down, 
And the smile that played on her lips, 
Was suddenly replaced by a frown.
Gone were the butterflies, 
Each rushed back to its home,
And this young, confused girl,
Was stranded all alone.

As the last rays of the sun,
Bid the earth adieu,
She was caught up in a frenzy,
Now what could she do?

Not a soul to guide her,
Pitch darkness all around,
But then quite suddenly, out of the blue
Her ears picked up a familiar sound.

Cautiously and carefully,
Yet stumbling all along,
She led herself in the darkness,
In pursuit of the song.

The spectacle in front of her eyes,
Made her cry aloud with happiness,
For she saw fireflies a hundred,
Who could guide her out of this mess.

With those small, alluring creatures,
The path ahead was bright,
All that she had to do,
Was to follow the light.

Slowly and steadily,
She figured her way out,
Her trust in those lights of hope,
Left no place for any doubt.

And then at a long last,
Her home drew near,
Her heart could have sang loudly,
Gone was all her fear.

How she marveled at the beauty,
Of these tiny, little beings,
But this escapade of hers,
Had taught her countless small things.

She learnt that life
Couldn’t be all about sunshine,
But however dark the night may be,
Things were bound to be fine.

She learnt the importance of
Being hopeful in life,
And so, she learnt one million lessons,
From those enchanting fireflies.

                                          -Mugdha Deshpande

Himachal Diaries

Travelling to new places gives that kind of pleasure that makes you want to go after it again and again. It’s always my idea of an ideal break- a perfect hit refresh button. It had been quite a long time since we had travelled to any far off destination- something that the wanderlust inside me truly missed. And so finally in the month of May 2022, we headed towards the much coveted destination for a mountain lover- Himachal Pradesh. 

    We arrived in Chandigarh and visited the much famed Rock Garden and Pinjore Garden. Then we proceeded to the queen of hills, Shimla. There was a drastic change in the scenery from the bustling city of Chandigarh to the tranquil hills and the difference in the flora and fauna was unmistakable.

     The town of Shimla is unique in many aspects. The Mall Road is a favourite place for tourists from afar. Next day we had an adrenaline-rushing experience at the adventure park in Kufri. As the sun set, we feasted our eyes on the night city of Shimla, something which literally personified a sequined shawl.

 But the highlight of the entire trip was the town of Manali – the most sought after place of Himachal and one of the places that had been on my travel bucket list for quite some time. The journey to Manali was something that I look back upon as a long one full of laughter, photos and songs. It was dusk when we reached, and hence the town of old Manali was alit with market lights shimmering like diamonds. Our hotel too was situated in old Manali and it was just a perfect welcome to us after a long journey. The woody interior, perfectly manicured roses of every shade, and the warmth of the pahadi people was something that gave the place an alluring vibe. 

    The next day began even before cock-crow as we headed towards Rohtang Pass- a few hours from Manali. As the sun rose, I fully became aware of the scenery that surrounded me. The tops of the Himalayas were gently kissed by the early morning sun, as the pure rays spread a gleam of fiery orange on the opaline white snow. It was a dream to wake up to this view, to this enthralling spectacle that has been captured and etched firmly in my mind. The road to Rohtang pass was an ethereal one. With green sloping conifers on one side and the Himalayas towering in their majesty on the other, we ventured further, staring agog at the unparalleled wilderness surrounding us. 

    Many times it is the ride from one place to another that gives you something to think about. It’s a relaxing experience to endlessly admire the world from your window, contemplate about the things that you like and enjoy the sudden burst of phrases describing the sight that just pop into your mind as the car turns from one bend to another. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect and as we gained altitude, the road bore noticeable signs of fresh, untouched snow. Looking down at the hairpin bend roads from atop made me realize the height at which we were and the terrain through which we had just traversed. The mountains which we had looked at from below had become our next-door neighbours. Looking at the snow on them suddenly gave me the mad desire to squeal with joy, like a small girl, excited at the sight of snow. Once we were above 10,000 feet, the layers of jackets and snow gear wrapping me had a definite increase. Climbing yet above, we reached Rohtang pass at an altitude of approximately 14,000 feet above the sea level. The pass was glittering white from the recent snowfall that had taken place at dawn and this was the moment that made it worth getting up at 4 am that day. There were ranges and ranges of snowy mountains everywhere one’s eyes could travel and standing amidst them gave me the goosebumps of the am-I-on-Earth type feeling. Sitting there made me realise the gravity of the oblivion in which we live. I became aware, more clearer than ever, of the fact that we are just tiny bits of a vast puzzle. It felt so good to be a part of this stunning creation and a sense of happiness washed over me. After playing in the snow to our heart’s content and clicking away some million photos, we finally headed back to our bus. We crossed the Rohtang pass descended down and from the recently built Atal tunnel returned back to Manali. We also took the ropeway ride at Solang valley which was a mesmerizing experience of seeing the snow-clad glaciers from above. After this, we returned back to our hotel and called it a day. The next two days passed in a flurry, visiting local places of Manali. And before we knew, it was time to say goodbye. We returned to Chandigarh from where we boarded the flight to Pune. As the plane took off, I watched the city of Chandigarh below, recollecting all the amazing moments that had made our trip one of the best experiences ever had. And I would like to tell you this. The Himalayas are a gift to India, a place that compels each one to introspect on the varied opportunities life has to offer as well as get away from the busy city life whenever one needs a break. To me, the Himalayas are not just a range of mountains, but a plethora of emotions that propel me to be grounded and stand tall. I literally feel that they withhold something magical, a force that cannot be put into words but can surely be felt from within. The call of the Himalayas is such that it’s hard to ignore. Once you go there, they call you again. And hence raising a toast to this heaven of travellers, to the beautiful state of Himachal Pradesh, tucked peacefully in one of the mightiest mountains of the world. 

~Mugdha Deshpande

Enclosing some photos we clicked!


While amidst nature, one derives inspiration from the smallest of things. They somehow compel you to introspect and you begin to find similarities between nature and human life. The more you delve, the more you realise that nature is an inseparable part of our life. In this poem, I’ve tried to use Metaphor to compare wildflowers to humans. It is based on the quote, ‘A flower never thinks of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.’ As William Blake rightly says, “To see the world in a grain of sand, and heaven in a wildflower, hold infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour”, there are so many things to learn from even the minutest aspects of this universe. So read on and do let me know your thoughts about it in the comments section!

On a vast mossy stretch,
All around lush green,
A wildflower stood happy,
As if she was the queen.
In that huge sea of green,
Wildflowers all around,
Each one stood tall,
Yet embedded in the ground.
Here every flower bloomed,
In its own beautiful way,
Each of the pure souls,
Gathered every sunray.
Many as they might be,
None competed with the other,
Instead, thet found their way out,
By supporting one another.
No doubt they were tiny; but
They taught me something great:
To bloom, to grow and to smile,
Without worrying about fate.
Unparalleled was their beauty,
All danced with the breeze together,
And spellbound, I pondered upon;
What I’d learnt from a wildflower.

~Mugdha Deshpande


Through this short story, I’ve tried to depict the life of a typical Indian working Mother and how she gets on with her busy day. This time, I’ve used a different style of writing- like the one I noticed while reading books written by authors whose writings portray Indian culture. You will find code mixing, that is the use of words in a different language to enhance the content. Read on and tell me what you feel about it!

She was woken up by the much too familiar call of the alarm clock. 6 am. Long before I woke up. The start of another day. How she craved to roll over for another snooze! Reminding herself that there were still four days left for the weekend, she got up. She smiled as she recalled how she had dozed off the moment her head had hit the pillow the previous night. Fresh and having had a good night’s sleep, she was charged up again.

Getting up, she did her usual morning chores, collected the milk and the newspaper and turned on the gas to make some chaha. As the milk boiled over the flame, she strolled out into the gallery to examine her garden, something that she enjoyed thoroughly. That was when I trudged sleepily into the gallery. As I looked at her, I saw that her face reflected the tenderness of her heart as she gently caressed the blooming roses. 

Her cup of chaha marked the start of her day. She then bustled about in the kitchen chopping veggies and setting up things. She was busy making breakfast when she realized that it was 8 am already. A soft groan escaped her as she dashed about the house, looking for her headphones and mobile. Then she logged in to Zoom and joined the meeting she was supposed to attend. 

No doubt she was an excellent multi tasker and as the veggies boiled in the kadhai, I heard her telling her team about some new project they had received recently. 

Breakfast was a quick thing for her with not much time at hand. By 10 am, she had completed her chores, made a delicious meal, had finished her bath and was dressed up in an ethnic cotton kurti, ready for work. 

‘The traffic seems as bad as yesterday,’ she thought as she steered her car on the road. But as she turned on the radio, all her thoughts vanished as she began enjoying the music on her favourite Radio Mirchi station. 

At work, it was a different story. Her day was lined up with meetings, client presentations, sync ups, and reports. She literally bolted down her lunch and didn’t even stop to think about how her new masala had enhanced the flavour of the bhaji she had cooked. As the day drew to a close, she packed her laptop and headed home. Trying to be patient with the evening traffic, she thought longingly of the cup of chaha that awaited her.

Once she was home, she microwaved her chaha to make it piping hot, just the way she liked. And grabbing her favourite Parle G biscuit, settled herself in an armchair in the gallery. When I returned home, I saw her sitting in the gallery.

She was so content and was blissfully enjoying her chaha. Birds twittered and the sun painted the sky with its crimson hues. This was the rare time she spent with herself and all of us made sure that she wasnt disturbed then. As I watched her, I wondered when I would be able to do so many things without getting tired. I wondered how come she never complained and worked really hard every single day. I recalled how she enjoyed doing little tasks and found immense happiness in small mundane things . ‘Maybe that is her fuel,’ I thought. 

They say that queens live in palaces and superwomen are found only in movies. They also say that role models are always big, famous people. Truth be told, I can’t disagree more.  

~Mugdha Deshpande 


Have you ever experienced this feeling when there are a million thoughts in your head and you can’t figure out which ones to think about first? And then just when you are confused, some inspiration hits you suddenly and your thoughts start to fall in place one after the other? I have tried to put this feeling into words in this metaphorical poem in which I have compared ‘thoughts’ to a disarranged bundle of threads, first, and then later to a rich brocade fabric that consists of the earlier jumbled threads. So read on and do let me know what you feel about it!

In this little walnut of mine,

There’s a tangle of threads varied and fine,

Wrapped up together in one big bundle,

Each thread trying to make its way out of the jumble.

Vibrant as they might be, of every different shade,

Of blue and gold, silver and red,

Each one unique, no two are the same,

And yet they fit in the same beautiful frame.

Together the weave a fabric so rich,

All tangled threads fitting in without a hitch,

Forgotten long back are the confused heaps of thread,

As they fall magically in place into a brocade.

In this little walnut in our head,

These tangled threads are thoughts a hundred,

They stumble, they fall but get up nevertheless,

And in the end, they always fall in place.

The mind no longer remains a jumble of thoughts,

The coveted crystal clear clarity is finally sought.

~Mugdha Deshpande