I have to admit, I’m losing steam on writing these weeknotes because my days have gone back to looking somewhat the same. But here we go, anyway.

Salman Rushdie’s stabbing shook me. All the 30-year-long chaos and venom around The Satanic Verses makes it seem like it’s as widely read as Harry Potter or Enid Blyton. It’s not. But people who want to censor and murder authors are rarely their biggest fans, or even big readers in general. It isn’t about the book, but about the idea of the book, what the author stands for, and how people think the two of them together make them feel. It’s a dangerous path to be moving down, and I wonder if, with this kind of momentum, we can hit the brakes.

I am so done with using (or trying to use) taxi/ auto apps to get places. It takes so long to book a ride that you’d think there were no vehicles on the face of the planet. And then, there’s the pricing. I paid 200 rupees to travel 10 kilometres from home to work, and then 136 rupees to cover 2.4 kilometres from the nearest metro station to home. Like, hello???

Anyway, small good things also happened. I finished A Wizard of Earthsea — that book walked so Harry Potter could run. Reading on the way to work has been a fun way to not think of sacrificing ~3 hours to the commute, so I took Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities with me this week, mostly because it’s lightweight. At home, I started the heftier She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan. I’m only a few pages in so I’ll leave commenting on it for next week.

A postcard I sent to Germany reached in 18 days! It was an illustration of Koshy’s, and I wrote a little anecdote about the place on the back. I was worried it wouldn’t make it. It’s lowkey inspired me to think about starting a snail mail project where people send me letters and I reply with, like, a painting or a postcard. I’ll need to get a PO Box first, and then announce it on Kindred Spirits once I’ve planned it all.

I sprung for a new phone, finally. The old one was… alive… but it was only downhill from there, so I thought I’d upgrade to the iPhone 13 while the sales were on. The jump in camera quality is insane — just look at this no-filter photo I took from my balcony!

An essay I wrote about the many ways we love a book, inspired by the responses to this tweet, found a home in Borderless Journal! Here’s an excerpt:

“But like there’s more than one way to love someone, there’s more than one way to love a book. Of course, some cults and sub-cults declare the other blasphemous, but the truth is simple: one book can be revered in many ways.”

Read the essay here.