It’s all about the journey together…

Posted on: September 2, 2014

A few minutes before The 100 foot journey was about to begin, my friend intimated me that this movie is about food. I must confess, I was disappointed to hear that. Neither am I a gourmet, nor a great cook, so my interest in food is limited to my meals, twice a day.

But I gradually discovered that it is not about food alone. In short, the story is about one young Indian, Hasan Kadam, who is a great cook. He runs his family restaurant first in Mumbai, then in London. But the family soon moves to a French village and opens an Indian restaurant. They were doing well till one night, the restaurant was vandalized by a chef of their rival French restaurant, run by Madam Mallory, across the road, just 100 feet away. Mallory, upon realizing that her chef was the man behind the attack, fires him and apologizes to Hasan’s family.

But Hasan realizes that if he cannot defeat his enemy, he should join them. He joins Mallory for six months to add finesse to his art of cooking. He was already in love with Marguerite (the sous chef in the restaurant), who he met on his first day in the village. Despite being in love, Marguerite feels threatened by Hasan’s presence because she knows he is a competition. After Hasan joins in, Mallory’s restaurant gets the second Michelin Star, an elite honor bestowed on only a handful of restaurants in Europe. This honor came to Madam Mallory after 30 years of receiving her first star. The entire credit goes to Hasan. The award draws national attention to Hasan’s cooking, and he is offered a job in Paris, which he accepts.

But after some time, he leaves his promising career in Paris and comes back to the village, to his family, to the girl he loved. He makes a business proposition to Marguerite that the two will work together to get a 3 star for Mallory’s restaurant. She happily accepts the proposal. And their journey begins.

There is a convincing message that the film sends across to all of us, especially professionals like us who are very career oriented. The message is that two people who love each other can never encroach on each other’s space. They will only enlarge the space where the two can comfortably stay together.

Many of us, (here, I am primarily talking about journalists) who are in our mid-careers, have really worked hard to reach where we are today . The journey has never been easy for those who had no Godfathers in the profession. It is only because of the sheer love for what we want to do and for what we believe in, that we have earned certain space in this ruthless professional world.

Having achieved whatever little we all have in our own way, I feel, we often get trapped in the cobweb of false recognition. It is the virtual world of Facebook, Twitter and many other social networking forums that rule our lives these days. We get swayed away by the number of times our stories get shared on social networking forums. We judge our work by the number of followers we get on Twitter. This constant look out for validation is slowly ruining our individualities, in a way. Sometimes, we argue for the sake of argument because the order of the day is to go against the tide. Stronger the argument, more the likes on Facebook or more the number of followers on Twitter. But if there is anyone who disagrees with us, we take half a minute to un-friend or un-follow that person. This gives us an immense sense of pleasure and accomplishment.

I feel, we are becoming self-obsessed and self-centered. Our world starts and ends with us. There is no place for someone who holds a view, contrary to ours.

In my opinion, this superficial happiness on the digital platform has taken a toll on our real life relationships. Not that we don’t want people in our “real” lives but we have prepared a checklist for them, a list which is drawn mostly in the lines of the responses that we get in the virtual world.

The checklist is like this. The person has to accommodate himself/herself according to our convenience. We should hold the right to call the shots – to befriend or un-friend people anytime. We should have the right to cut off ourselves from the other person, whenever we think is right or whenever we feel that the other person is occupying too much of our precious time.

It clearly shows that we are too impatient to accommodate the other person in our life.We think it is “cool” not to value our real life relationships because we have thousands of friends and followers in the virtual world. It is unfortunate that we lack sensitivity in dealing with relationships, even which we choose.

Conveniently,here again, it is all about ourselves. The other person doesn’t exist for us. . Our shortsightedness doesn’t allow us to look beyond this vicious cycle of deadlines, bylines,exclusives and fan following on social networking forums.It is sad that relationships are extremely short-lived these days because we give priority only to our ambition and success.

But The 100 foot journey reminds many of us that ambition and success can co-exist with various relationships in life. All we need to do is to re-work our priorities from time to time. It also tells us that we have to trust people we love. We should also understand that our partners are not intruders, nor are they threat to our flourishing career. They are not here to take away our space but to share their own space with us. They can never intrude into our privacy because they respect it as much as they respect their own privacy.

If we truly believe in this, it will be a wonderful journey together. An incredible journey of sharing and togetherness.


4 Responses to "It’s all about the journey together…"

well-written piece. Interesting parallels have been drawn between the movie and the craft practised by writers, editors, multimediographers and now, bloggers. The dynamics of the space inhabited by this creative lot is changing faster than ever before. But expertise should go hand in hand with an innate sense of sensitivity. After all we are all in the domain of story telling and it’s an art that becomes perfect only with a lot of understanding and compassion.

true, innate sense of sensitivity…not that we don’t have it but unfortunately, it is rarely applied in personal relationships..

Any creative person wants to get recognised and appreciated. It is but normal. The ‘trap’ is when the craving becomes monstrous and engulfs creativity itself.

Absolutely, true. We have to keep a check on ourselves.

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