My Top Ten…

People

Ma (who is the centre of my universe)

Achan (who makes me see the beauty in genetics)

Ammuma (who loves me just because)

Muttachan (who taught me how to count… all the way to one hundred… in Sanskrit)

Nandini (who gets on my nerves all the time, but I love her)

Geetu (who is hilarious)

Geeta Akka (who inspires awe in me like no one else)

My Muse (whose identity must be protected)

My best friend (who will throw a fit if I name her)

The best history teacher in the whole wide world

Things to Do

Read

Write

Talk with Ma

Talk on the phone with my muse

Study Shakespeare… with dearest my friend

Study, in general (I'm an impossible nerd.

Dance… not to any music, just the few pieces I've managed to learn from Akka over the years

Eat chocolate… positively shovel kilos of it down my throat

Dream about the future. My future. Where I'll have a delicious PhD…

Replay conversations in my head

Places

My house… well, my parents' house

Ammuma's house, 'cause it's the house into which I was born

Nandini's house for that's where I get my solitude

Dance class. I've been there twice a week, every week for the past ten years. I've got to love it.

School. Yes, it figures on this list, as odd as that may be.

Ma's college… make a beeline for the staffroom, that's where all the gossip and the real intellect is

Achan's lab. Third floor. Rice research wing. They've got minus 80 freezers- what more can you want?

My orthodontist's clinic. Let's face it- he gave me my teeth. And he's a Freemason.

Rules I live by

Honesty

Dignity

Avoid conflict. Dialogue FTW!

Aestheticism, to a certain extent

Wear stuff you can wear kajal and silver jewellery with. Makes life a thousand times easier

Harry Potter gets pride of place. All other literature comes afterwards.

Write down everything.

Dreams for the future

The Rhodes scholarship

D. Phil, Oxon

Author's Note: Yes, this is banal. But I wanted to put this out there.

I won't ask for reviews for this chapter, because it would be stupid. But no complaints if you do!