Every few weeks, in my Instagram DMs, I see strangers asking me, “Who are you?”
Maybe they are curious because of the five letter Instagram handle “Naina”. Maybe they are curious because of the “Verified” status of my Instagram handle. Maybe they’re bored and want someone to chat with.
HI, MY NAME IS NAINA
I have been a photographer for the last 17 years (not during the pandemic though – hiding indoors) & hope to continue being a photographer for the rest of my life.
I am also an artist. I paint abstracts using acrylics. I paint on circular canvases ranging from the size of 2 inches in diameter to 64 inches in diameter, which is the largest one I’ve painted so far. The smaller 2 / 2.5 / 3 inch diameter paintings can be worn as brooches – like the one I’m wearing in this photograph.
I’m 40 years old according to conventional age measurement. In the world that I live in, in my head, I’m probably more like 28 years old. I feel like I just turned 18.
My Dad is a retired Brigadier from the Indian Armed Forces. My Mom is a home maker. I grew up extremely sheltered & didn’t know how to write a cheque till I was 21 years old. The fauji life was wonderful & I miss it immensely.
I’m grateful for a rock solid partner who I’ve been with for 11 years. A younger sister who is like my best friend. And a handful of friends situated all over the world, who love me.
When I’m anxious, I chew the insides of my mouth & lips. My identity is centered around my work. I feel worthless if I’m not working. Workaholic not-so-anonymous.
I love freely.
I am an atheist. I despise religion. I don’t want to give birth but I might adopt / foster at some point. I believe in “live & let live”. “Do no harm”. “Bash on regardless”. “It is what it is”. “Fuck it”.
I have put on a bit of weight during the lockdown but I feel the sexiest I’ve ever felt. I guess, there is some truth to, “Life begins at 40”.
I don’t exercise even though I know that it’s good for my body. I eat supplements erratically. I enjoy drinking beer and wine and gin. I relapsed into a bit of smoking during the lockdown. I’m moody. I can be the life of a party or I can be the first person in the bungee jumping queue of 30 people and refuse to jump and not leave and continue to make everyone nervous.
I have sky dived once. I love the beach & the ocean but I’m always worried that I’ll be bitten by a jellyfish or eaten by a shark. So, swimming pools are better.