4.8 Open Water

Words by the pod
September 2021

The pod is a small group that meets every Sunday to read and write together. During one of our Sunday sessions, we decided to write about objects that make our lives easier. Take is a compilation of those objects.

Each object reflects experiences from the past year and a half - taking a break to understand ourselves, finding ways to cope with our emotions, and accepting losses that come with time. To us, the common theme seems to be our dependence on our immediate surroundings for finding different forms of momentary happiness (in today’s context, finding ways to feel whole again).


 Illustrations by Ishani Kamat and Jishnnu B


Stuti's Bright

5am with Bright

I met Bright when I was seventeen and had started feeling the need to explore things in the adult world. We had known each other since I was ten but I was more interested in instant brewing back then and Bright didn’t like me much. So, one morning, I tried getting to know Bright. It took a long while for Bright to bubble up to me but we found our rhythm soon enough. We couldn’t go a single morning without spending time with each other. On some days, I would wake up at 5am to find some alone time with her before our family started being noisy and nosey in the morning. This went on for about two months after which I left for university. Bright stayed back home with our family. She belonged there and everyone needed her more than I did. I met a few more who looked like Bright – some bubbled faster, some looked stronger and some were pretty dark on the inside. A few years went by and I gave up hope on finding the same rhythm I had with Bright. And soon after that, I forgot about Bright. In 2020, I came back home. Bright was still there. She was slower but happier. We were slower but happier. We had our rhythm again. I had hope again.

Bright died in January 2021. A part of her holds the brightest flowers in my garden.

10am with Blue

I would have ceased to be a human if Blue wasn’t there for me. They came in small pieces -fragmented, with no palpable shape - a formless monster of type. My father brought them home every Sunday.

I had been associated with Blue for almost two years but our relationship was unlike any other. We would hold each other’s hands and simultaneously claw at our wrists. We would be there for each other, yet wouldn’t value it.

Blue had my back, even though the times I felt otherwise are a lot more than I care to admit. They made me insecure about my body. I tried to harm myself by using them - even though they were supposed to help me.

Blue continues to live as small sky-coloured tablets in an aluminum manufactured foil.


Eli's Blue


Anayat's Jojo

12am with Jojo

Nestled in bed at midnight, I confided in Jojo for the first time. The complex emotions in my head started gaining clarity. Over time, Jojo helped me understand myself and became a friend who was always there for me. She never judged or questioned me, and always stayed beside me. She knows all my deepest secrets and I trust her to never spill them. So, I continue pouring my heart into her knowing that my time with her will end soon.

In about a week, there will be no space in her for my ramblings. But I will continue going back to her even when I move on to other friends.

2am with Maya

Some things shine, some things dazzle and then some things are inherently radiant - giving an effervescent glow. Without asking any questions, Maya illuminates me. Not long ago, she used to live in a warehouse far away from where she decided to migrate - moving from one rough hand to the other till she finally reached me. My companion at night, one who never judges, no matter what conversations take place under her light. She only dims down if Mr. Electricity starts to act flaky, abandoned issues are always quite easy to spot. She’s grown older with me now, slightly wiser, dirt and time have made their marks. Though she still believes that she can go on forever - shining resiliently. I can see the troubles she has gone through. A silent spectator to (over) consumption of alcohol in the wee hours of the night, wearing down both of us. Our light dims slowly, internally. Today I take her down, the walls need a fresh coat of paint. Maybe some rest will do her good, replenish that luminosity. Maybe she will never come back. Maybe she doesn’t want to.


Ria's Maya

About Mysticeti's friends in the pod:

Anayat spends most of her time writing her thesis about outmigration and watching animal videos.

Elizabeth writes about personal experiences of loneliness and political turmoil.


Ria writes for social development and spends most of her time with her dog, Joey.

Stuti spends most of her time with Mysticeti.