Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The sand is trickling...

When one is younger, one looks at each passing day with eager anticipation, one can’t wait to grow up. Milestones to be passed, thresholds to be crossed.

However, I now perceive each passing day/ weekend differently. I’m aware of passing time, years, like the slipping of sand from between my fingers. While I cannot say that I’m petrified, I must admit that I’m anxious about impending separations, coping with crises. And while I know that Life is all about the Here and Now, I realise that I’ve to take effort to shrug away the fears, the uncertainties of the Future.

I do not dwell upon such thoughts, but neither can I dissociate completely from the concept of mortality and the futility of everything. The idea remains as a backdrop in my consciousness. I admit that though this constant awareness does not dilute the essence of my present, yet I do feel a certain disenchantment at some level.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

For a daughter…

This started of as a comment to a post by mommy of2 but I had a hunch it would get a bit long, so decided to post it as a blog.

I’m a mother of two sons- two sons who are my very life. However, I had always yearned for a daughter; right from the time I first started wondering what it would feel like to become a mother.

When my first son was born, I thought that I could still perhaps have a daughter. Then when I was informed that my second baby was also going to be a son, I came home and cried bitterly. Though today I can look back at that day with detachment, I remember I had felt very sad. Of course, I reminded myself to be grateful and pray for a healthy baby. For the next few years after the birth of my second son, I did feel a pang whenever I heard of a birth of a baby girl to a friend or relative.

Today, as I look at my younger son, I feel no regrets. I very consciously and deliberately trained myself not to think about daughters with longing. I just refused to let my thoughts go there and I can say that I managed to succeed in detaching myself from the yearning that I once nurtured. I’ve also succeeded in desensitizing myself from random insensitive comments that sometimes still come my way. Today I can look at little girls with happiness, fondness, pure affection without any remnant pangs.

I have two little girls coming to me for tuitions and I enjoy my time with them. I get to see several little cute girls at the dance class- and I love watching them, hearing them talk.

Today, I’m grateful for my sons and I just want them to grow up as good persons.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Home Sweet Home

Recently, I read a post in which the writer says that she is in quest of a ‘home’. Home is not where she lives currently. ‘Home’ used to be where her mom was, but now when she went back it no longer felt like Home. Then where is her ‘home’? She is still looking- she does get glimpses of ‘home’ at certain moments- but they’re transient…she wonders if she’s chasing a mirage, whether ‘home’ has been relegated to a mere concept? She is worried if she will be chasing it forever?

That set me wondering…what is ‘home’ for me? Today, it is this place where I live with my husband and children- the answer forms in my mind immediately. Why is this place ‘home’ for me, I want to find out. I think that I’ve never connected home with its geographical location.

For me, home is this flat where I live. Here, I rule. I do what I like when I like, how I like. No questions asked, no answers expected. I like that. While I’m not totally undisciplined, I’ve never enjoyed living by rules. I like to move ‘araam se’- I love to amble along life, watch others racing by- wave to them. I don’t enjoy living by the clock to the second. I like to just follow it casually. If I make commitments, I’ve to stick to it and I do it. But if I’ve to be racing against time and demands constantly, I lose perspective of who I’m. I need respite in between.

Any place where I would have to do things by clockwork, where I have to do things according to rules charted out by others, within stipulated time would be stifling. This I mean only with regard to ‘home’ and not work place. I used to work in the past and had no problems with punctuality, sincerity, overtime, deadlines. It is only ‘Home’ where I expect things to be laid back. In fact that is why I call it ‘home’ in the first place.

For me, home is the place to unwind, relax. Of course, there should be some basic discipline especially if one is bringing up kids. May be sleeping late now and then, bathing a little later than usual, postpone the folding of laundry ( provided it is not piled on the living room sofa) and yet the sky would not come crashing down. Having to abide by strict rules and timings at all times, then that would not be ‘home’ for me.

I understand that I don’t enjoy doing things because I’m supposed to or expected to.
However, with age comes responsibilities and duties to others and I understand and accept that Life is not about having my way all the time, it is not about doing only those things that I like. I’m willing to adjust and accommodate for others now and then, as long as I know it’s not going to be forever and that I’ll be going ‘home’ sooner or later. :-)

But I need to be on my own in between to get recharged to be able to extend beyond my comfort zone and fulfill my responsibilities cheerfully and sincerely.

I also realise that definitions of love, acceptance and tolerance have evolved with changes in my life.

I’m not too sure if my definitions are right- Sometimes I even have doubts if it is fair. But I’ve no choice but to acknowledge that this is how I am.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A Different tag

So this is a different tag from Chet. One has to just upload a snap from one’s childhood. So I rummaged in the cupboards and dug out the ancient albums and managed to find one of mine as a baby- just six months old. I’m afraid the clarity is wanting.

I would like to tag Hiphop grandma and Usha. I sincerely hope they are able to dig into the archives of family portraits and find their childhood snaps.

Monday, November 13, 2006

I don’t remember the first time I met her. What I remember is her smile that lit up her huge eyes, her cheerfulness that made us forget that she was in extreme physical discomfort. She was so loving, her talk was so animated, that her listener could not help marvelling.

Its been a long, long time since I met her last- and now she is no more….She- whom I called Rudrani ammayi- because she was my uncle- Sukumaramman’s wife .
I just feel blessed to have known her…

Friday, November 10, 2006

Saw the tamil movie “Vidukkathai” ( Director- Ahathiyan) again the other day .I had seen this movie some years ago and had loved it then too. Its about how a young girl of 18 falls in love with a man in his forties. The role of the girl is played by Neena ( the child artiste in Keladi Kanmani) and the middle aged man’s role is essayed by Prakash Raj.
I liked the way the story evolved, I liked the acting. I liked the way the complexes of the man surfaces , his reactions to the comments of people around, I liked the way how the girl dealt with them. I enjoyed the movie all over again. I'm not sure if the movie was a hit.

Monday, November 06, 2006

More about Blogging and me.

1. Are you happy/satisfied with your blog, with its content and look? Does your family know about your blog?

Yes, I’m satisfied with the look of my blog which was given to me by my dear friend Aalapana. I’m not good at tinkering with the template. However, of late, I find I’m increasignly feeling discontented with the contents of my blog. There is a listlessness, a sense of dissatisfaction with what I’m writing. I feel the need to write more, better. I remember the sense of ‘thripthi´( satisfaction) I used to feel long ago after I had posted. This feeling I do not experience nowadays.

2. Does your family know about your blog?

Yes, a few of my family members do know that I blog, and a couple of them do read my posts too.

3. Do you feel embarrassed to let your friends know about your blog or do you consider it a private thing?

I do not feel embarrassed but yes, I do hesitate to let all my friends know about my blog, but that is only because I don’t want the awareness to interfere with my spontanaeity in expression.

4. Did Blogs have a positive change in your thoughts?

Yes, I can confidently say that blogging has brought about a positive change in my thoughts. In the beginning, I was extremely encouraged by the the feedback I got, and that gave me a boost of confidence. The interaction in the virtual world enriched my life and has given me much happiness.
Reading others’ blogs has opened up a fascinating world of myriad experiences, perspectives, ideas.I’ve immensely enjoyed marveling the writing skills of several bloggers – their wrting styles, sense of humour. It has indeed changed my attitude to life in several ways.

5. Do you only open the blogs of those who comment on your blog or do you love to go and discover new blogs for yourself?

No, I go blog hopping from the comments section of other bloggers too. I love discovering new blogs and I’ve a really long list of blogs to read saved in my pc. I don’t always leave comments though.

6. What does the visitor counter mean to you? do you care about putting it on your blog?

When I first installed the site meter, I used to follow it up very religiously. I used to be thrilled to see the number of people who visit my page. But nowadays, I don’t look it up at all. So, now if there are no comments on my blog, I’m not sure if anybody has even read my post.

7. Do you try to imagine your fellow bloggers and give them real pictures?

I don’t always imagine the faces of the other bloggers, but I’ve wondered how they might look on a couple of occasions when there had been a prospect of meeting a few of them. But in the virtual world, it is more of interacting with thoughts and the faces doesn’t really matter.

8. Do you think there is a real benefit to blogging?

For me , Yes, I do think there is a real benefit to blogging .

9. Do you think that bloggers society is isolated from the real world or interacts with events?

Not really, because Ifeel that blogs mostly reflect real lfie experiences, thoughts. In fact , perhaps more real because the anonymity helps the blogger to be utterly honest than one would perhaps be in real life.

10. Does criticism annoy you or do you feel it is a normal thing?

Healthy and constructive criticism is a good thing. However if the intent is simply malicious then it is best ignored.

11. Do you fear some political blogs and do you avoid them?

Politics do not interest me, and conflicting ideologies if not tempered with tolerance cause unpleasant situations sometimes and I prefer to stay away from such scenario.

12. Did you get shocked by the arrest of some bloggers?

I was not aware of the arrests and if the arrests were to prevent harmful situations, I guess it may be justified, but ideally freedom of expression on blogs without misuse should be prevalent.

13. Do you think about what will happen to your blog after you die?

Hmm. . in fact this thought had occurred to me at some random moment. I guess my blogspace would just stop getting updated,obviously and then perhaps a few regular readers (?) might wonder what happened to me. I do have a couple of friends in the virtual world who do try to call me up and check if I‘m doing fine, if I remain silent for a stretch of time, and then may be these friends would mention it on their posts!

14. Which blogger has made the greatest impression on you?

Quite a fewof them and for different reasons. It is difficult to mention just one, still I would say Hip Hop grand mom, Akeeyu, Star gazer Lalita, Velu, Usha, Megha.

15. Which blogger you think is most similar to you?

I would not be able to say that any blogger is similar to me- but at various times, I’ve come across similar tracks of thought, similar ways of expression in different blogs. Sometimes uncanny and sometimes just random coincidences. I remember having read somewhere that how much ever one likes to believe that one is unique, still every thought, feeling and idea has been borne into minds again and again. In fact it is because of being able to relate to some thoughts and ideas, that one enjoys readingthem expressed by others.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

What Blogging has come to mean to me...

Blogging to me in the beginning was a way to cleanse my innermost thoughts. A medium to air all the conflicts and clashes that collected like grime and fogged my mind and soul. I did not have the courage to express my opinions to others clearly. I would try to but when the other person was louder and more vehement, then I would just clam up after a time; but the thoughts and words would keep struggling to come to the outside. For this purpose I resorted to blogging- I had this need to be honest, completely honest to myself. I felt stifled with the veneer of politeness that one had to adopt in daily life to avoid confrontations, to ensure peace; and blogging was the outlet for me- it gave me clarity of thought, it helped me sort out things within myself and then move on without pending accounts. - (Eternal Quest). I wanted to express thoughts and ideas that I wouldn’t acknowledge to real life me. (Deliverance). Needless to say, the encouraging comments from the other bloggers helped a lot.

And for this, I started out with a pseudonym- how I coined the name Ardra Vamshi is no longer a clear memory. I always liked the sound of the name Ardra- I liked the meaning too I guess. Anyway for me it was just a pseudonym- an anonymous mask I wore. I’m not very sure as to what I wanted to hide. I think that I wanted to give voice to certain sounds, words that I would not be able to express in the real world.

Time and again, we feel bound to stick to definitions of ourselves sometimes given to us by others or sometimes as we perceive ourselves; and that somehow curbs our spontaneous responses, gestures, actions. Sometimes these boxes are deliberately created by us and sometimes they evolve on their own without us being aware of it. People around us form their own perceptions of us coloured by their own experiences and attitudes; and when they respond to us accordingly, we unconsciously react according to these perceptions, thus fulfilling their perceptions of us. The image cultivation is not deliberate, it just evolves. However, at times we might deviate from these perceptions...we inadvertently provide a glimpse to the real us now and then and slowly the veneer between the real and the virtual dissolves.

Ardra- when she started blogging was a different person- then the other bloggers began responding in a particular way, and Ardra was evolving accordingly. Though Ardra was definitely a part of N; but only in parts. I realized that in spite of the pseudonym- an assumed identity, I still was expressing only selectively. Though my blogs have always been spontaneous, I saw that I had chosen to explore only certain aspects of my life on my blogs; not because I wanted to keep some aspects hidden but only because I was comfortable that way. I realized that Ardra could not be different from N.

Gradually, more of N spilled thru into Ardra and now I think Ardra and N have merged into a single identity. There is no longer a need to vent or rant; at least nothing that I wouldn’t be able to sort out in Real life either. Now it’s only about talking, conversing, sharing. I’ve become comfortable with my thoughts, reactions and ideas. I’ve become comfortable with whatever perception other bloggers may form about Ardra. This acceptance has come about because most bloggers I read are very honest, very brave about expressing themselves and most bloggers too accept the honesty non judgmentally.

And seeing my
thoughts crystallised into words on the coloured template on the monitor gives me a strange sense of high which eliminates all the negativity within me, and I’m at peace with the world and Life :-)

My first post ( on sulekha)- a creative attempt-

An offering from my Heart

Monday, October 23, 2006

My Blogging style?

What is your basic writing style?

I’m not sure if I have a writing style. I just use language to express my thoughts or sometimes lack of thoughts, ideas, feelings, emotions.

What do you tend to express best?

Emotions. Feelings?

What do you find hard to accomplish ?

Post on a daily basis. I get stuck many times. I wish to write more often, not just here but also on my
Creative Dabbles page.

How long do you take over compiling a post?

That depends on my mood, motivation and what I’ve to say. When I’m inspired, I do it in a matter of minutes, the words just tumble out in a hurry to escape. I don’t attempt if I don’t feel like it. Of late, I feel my thoughts and words have become repetititve.

Do you feel the urge to make a post everyday or atleast every other day, because you enjoy blogging or do you post only when there is something definite to say?

I wish I could post something interesting every other day atleast. I feel incomplete if I don’t post . I don’t post necessarily to say something specific. Its more a result of some strong feeling, thought and when my mind is empty of thoughts it shows in my posts too.

Do you work on multiple posts at a time saved as drafts or do you work single mindedly from post to post.?

No, I don’t work on multiple posts- except when I used to post a series on my childhood memories ,
Hostel life and then a few movie stories that I posted in episodes. For thes, I used to compile the matter at one go and then post them one after the other. I remember how I could hardly wait for the next day to post the next episode.

Any particular time of day or night that you generally post during? While at work or from home?

During the day, after I finish the chores around my home. I post from home.

Has blogging helped you in any way? If so how?

Oh yes, Blogging has helped in more than one way. I have enjoyed translating my thoughts into words and then having it out here on the net . It has given me a sense of satisfaction, it has introduced me to many nice people and I’ve made many friends this way. It has given me glimpses into varied ideas, perspectives, experiences. I’ve enjoyed marveling the writing skill of some of the bloggers- their writing style, skill over the language, sense of humour.

How long have you been blogging?

I first started blogging in Sulekha in June 2003. I started recording my thoughts on Twilight Musings in December 2004.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

My sons’ room is always in a state of mess- and whenever I enter their room they go into panic mode. The bed would be littered with books, clothes- the floor strewn with bags, papers- their desk is a treasure trove. Sometimes when I tell them to tidy up they just push things under the bed. Yesterday as I sashayed into their room, both of them ran after me- and pointed to the door- there was this hand made poster stuck to it which said

NO MOMS ALLOWED-(* esp Moms with sharp canines)

* an allusion to my Dracula tooth

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Crossing Milestones

Life is a continuing series of milestones; to where, one is not sure. We just keep crossing each as we go and mostly its only after we cross one do we realize the significance.

The week before last, we had relatives coming over for a few days from Kerala. We went with them on a trip. We went without my elder son. He was Home Alone for the first time- that is overnight. He has stayed back many times when we went for short outings. Well, this time he was to represent his school in a few Interschool competitions and there was no way he could accompany us. I was a bit apprehensive, but he was thrilled to stay back on his own. My husband too felt that we should allow him to stay back. After a million instructions, we left without him. My younger son was in tears as he waved Goodbye to his ettan (elder brother). It was not a long trip, we would be back by the next evening.

Anyways, he managed well- without ME! I was happy, relieved and yet there was a vague sense of loss…Because it reminds me that I’m slowly nearing the phase when he will become truly independent and realise that I’m having mixed feelings.

Today, when I’m composing mails/ blogs, and they intrude into my thoughts, I sometimes get impatient and ask them to leave me alone - tomorrow when they leave the nest- will my space and time mock me?

Of late, I’ve been reading so many tags abt “Heights”-concerning babies/ toddlers of the bloggers. And I find myself yearning to be around a baby, hold, cuddle a baby…

Monday, October 16, 2006

Stagnant thoughts

I’m so bored- bored with my style of writing, bored with my thoughts, bored with my words, sentences - so much that though I feel the need to post, I don’t feel like posting what I write. I want to write differently- each time. But I don’t know how to- this is the only way I can. I go bloghopping around at least 100 blogs- covering my blog roll and the other list that I’ve collected on my list of favourites in my PC- and I wish I could write like some of them.

I realize that had I been a reader of my posts, I wouldn’t have added my URL to my list of favourites. I do like some of them but those were written long ago.

But like I said this is the way I write and I know no other way. I seem to draw a blank now. I feel the need to express in words but I’m not satisfied with the attempts. What could be the reason, I try to delve- lack of topics, lack of thoughts, lack of vocabulary- I don’t know. I’m just bored I guess. In spite of the need to reach out to the virtual world- in spite of the need to write for my own self, I’m still unable to do so. Actually, I’ve picked up a couple of tags while bloghopping and kept it in reserve- to post when I feel the need desperately.

I first entered blogging through Sulekha- in June 2003. I steeped into the arena gingerly, with hesitant steps not knowing what to expect, but gradually there formed this circle of bloggers with whom one became friends. It was such fun and these friends were as dear to me as my real life friends. But with time, changes happened.

Today, when I go to Sulekha, I can see a similar camaraderie among the current bloggers there. Now, when I go there, I feel the feeling that one feels when one visits one’s College campus after many years. One remembers the familiar landmarks, the sense of belonging/ proprietorship with nostalgia.. However, to the current generation one is an outsider and that seems strange. One feels like going up to them and telling them- "Excuse me, I too belonged here once, and by the way, you’re stepping on my footprints". :-)
May be thats how Rip Wan Winkle must've felt when he woke up after years.
But then it does not matter. Nothing matters. No regrets. It just is. And I accept it.

My pc crashed yet again the other day, and once again I lost the list of favourites that I had stored in my pc- those other than the ones on my blogroll. And I’m painstakingly compiling them again. I go bloghopping on every site on both my lists, but I hardly comment these days. This is because I do most of my reading offline and hence it is difficult to post comments on the spur of the moment. Besides by the time I reach the different blogs, everything to be said would’ve already been said and so I leave no footprints.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

I was tagged by Aalapana many days ago, but being busy cud not get down to this earlier. Compiling this one was difficult because one has too many favourites. However enjoyed doing this one.

Your favourite lyricist and the lyrics you remember the most:


Haath chhoote bhi to rishte nahin choda karte
Waqt ki shakh se lamhein nahin toda karte…
( Maraasim- Jagjit Singh)

Your favourite song on friendship

Tho this song was not about Friendship, a very dear friend used to sing this song during college days- and we associate eachother with this song and so it has become synonymous with Friendship for me-

Tum mujhe yoon bhula na paaoge
Jab kabhi bhi sunoge geet mere
Sang sang tum bhi gungunaaoge…
( pagla kahin ka- Mohammed Rafi)

Best song portraying life’s emotions; about life, full of life

Zindagi milke bitaayenge hale dil gaake sunaayenge
Hum to saat rang hai
Yeh jahaan rangeen banaayenge
( Satte pe satta)

Ramayya Vastavayya (Shri 420)

Which song are you humming today?

Who lamhein who baatein
Koi na jaane
Thi kaisi ratein
Who bheegi bheegi yaadein…

One song which brings tears to your eyes

Tere mere milan ki yeh raina
Naya koi gul khilaayegi
Abhi to chanchal hai teri naina
Dekho na…
Nanha sa gul khilega angana
Sooni bayya sajegi sajna
( Abhimaan- Kishore Kumar, Lata)

A song which gives you hope, reason to try again and again, a reason to say that life is beautiful

Dukh bhare din beete re bhaiyya
Ab such aayo re
Rang jeevan mein naya laayo re
( Mother India)

When you want to be with yourself, silent and content but with music, with song would that be?

Saanjh dhale gagan tale
Hum kitne ekaaki

If you have to express your love for someone with a song which would that be

I’ve many songs for this situation:

Hamein tum se pyaar kitna
Yeh hum nahin jaante
Magar jee nahin sakte tumhare bina

Na jiya laage na
Tere bina mera kahin
Jiya laage naa…

Chalo dildaar chalo
Chand ke paar chalo
Hum hai tayyar chalo
( Paakeeza)

Bahon mein chale aao..
Ho, hum se sanam kya parda
( Anamika)

Five songs which you listen to the most

Very difficult to limit these to 5:

Abhi na jaao chhodkar
Ki dil abhi bhara nahin
( Hum Dono- Mohammed Rafi, Asha)

Piya bina piya bina baasiyaan ( Abhimaan)
Roz roz daali daale
kya likh jaaye bhavra...baavra
( Angoor)

Megha chaayi aadhi raat …( Sharmilee- Lata)

Mil gayi aaj do lehrein kuchh is tarha
Ab na manzil mile to koi gam nahin
(Yeh Vaada Raha)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Display of Affection

Atul asked in his latest blog :

“Can you love to the point of embarrassing the one you love?”

And this set me thinking- I’ve always thought of myself as someone who has often embarassed a few people with my love- not love exactly but with my display of affection. During my younger days, I had absolutely no qualms in expressing my affection. During the initial years of my mariage too, I was the same- with my new family members. But I could see that they were not used to such external display of affection- they were caught unawares- they were non plussed- and didn’t know how to react sometimes- tho I felt that they were pleased still- just that they did not know how to react- and slowly with the passage of years, I lost my ability to express as I used to- it was so gradual a change that I myself did not notice. And now when someone hugs me- I’m taken by surprise- and though I like the spontaneity of the gesture- I realise I don’t know how to react!

For me , there have been moments when literally I’ve felt so much love that I cant contain it- and I feel choked in a strange way- simply becos I’ve lost touch with how to express my overflowing emotion- I sill am able to express my affection with the people who are closest but with the people just beyond this innermost circle - I’m no longer able to- I’m afraid of embarassing them- and yes, I miss not being able to express it.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Yet another Tag!

Karin took the trouble to give me the questions of the tag on the comments of my previous post- and so here I’m –Thank You Karin- I enjoyed doing this one.

1) Was there any incident in your life which you feel, influenced you in particular?

Many incidents, I guess: Marriage, birth of my children, Death of my grandfather, and one another unpleasant incident which I don’t want to remember any more.

2) What are you afraid of? Please name at least ONE example!

I’m paranoid abt the health and well being of my loved ones.

3) Is there any nature-event, you particularly like (i.e. thunderstorm, rain, snow ect.)?

I like it best when the sky is overcast and there is a yellow glow in the horizon - just before the rains. There is something of the air then that makes me feel at peace- I don’t like heavy rains.

4) What kind of sport (if any) are you fond of or even actively pursue?

I’m afraid I’ve no interest in sports at all. I don’t even watch any sports. While in school, I used to participate in Running and Skipping relays and have even managed to win a few times but I was never passionate abt it. I loved running but the pressure of competing always put me off. ( if interested you may look up the answer to the question on my profile page and you’ll understand)

5) Do you easily get nervous or upset? "Blow up"?

Yes, I think I do- but may be I’m able to control my flare ups a little better nowadays. Atleast that’s what I’d like to believe- I must ask my children. I tend to get nervous when I’m getting late or even if I’m worried I’ll be late. Then another thing that completely rocks me up is when my loved ones fall sick. Then I’ve to really make a conscious effort to calm myself and think positive.

6) Do you dread getting older? Feel the biological clock ticking?

Well, while I don't actually 'dread' getting older, still when I spot yet another grey strand, I admit that something rankles somewhere. There have been random moments when I look into the mirror and have wondered if age is finally making footprints over my face/neck…but then I don’t brood over it. And now that I've started learning Bharathanatyam again, I've discovered that some postures which used to be very easy long ago now causes some agony. This does remind me that I'm no longer as agile as I used to be. I want to focus more on being healthy and cheerful.

7) Are you more a city-person or prefere the country-side?

I like the amenities of city life and the peace of the country side. It would be nice to visit the country side once in a while . Trichy does not feel too much like a bustling city and that helps, I guess.

8) Do you allow any kind of fashion to rule over your taste?

Not much, at least not beyond an experiment with the shape of the neckline of my kurta or sari- blouse.

9) Are you more on the introverted or extroverted side?

Somewhere in between- I’ve no problem going upto people and speaking, I’m not nervous in company, but I do find myself with lack of topics to talk about some times and when the silence looms large and loud, I’ve frantically racked my brains for small talk- and that is exhausting. I enjoy my own company a lot.

10) If you'd have to characterize yourself with one sentence - what would you say?

I guess I am an impulsive person who cannot hide emotions, and I love to laugh (guffaw) out loud without inhibition .

Friday, September 15, 2006

Not been tagged, yet...

During my bloghopping rounds, I saw Lalita’s tag- which later disappeared mysteriously- and I remembered the name of the blogger who had tagged her and so I tracked Chet from her comments – and took up the tag- I went around and have tracked down a couple more tags- but I’ll reserve those for a rainy day- meaning for another day when I’m stuck with nothing to blog abt…
So here’s the first one:

Which is the single best post you’ve read on any blog?

Too many to list actually- but right now I remember Scarlett’s post – the most recent one- I love her style of writing.

Which is the best post you’ve written ? which is the worst?

I really can’t say. Sometimes I’m very excited about what I’m about to post- the feeling vapourises soon after. And at other times, I do not feel too good abt a post- and yet I go ahead- but then sometimes the comments later make me feel gratified enough.
I think I like this one:
Shared Milestones.

How abt a place you’ve never been to but would very much like to?

I’m not too keen abt traveling- and am happiest at home- and so had to do a bit of thinking here and decided on Mercara- have seen it in a Malayalam movie- and remember thinking I would like to go there.

If you were a member of the opposite sex, what would you’ve done differently?

Again my imagination fails me. I find I’m just unable to think as a member of the opposite sex. Still, may be I would try to be the most romantic kind of man to my woman (chuckle- the very thought makes me giggle).I’m just able to think beyond this feminine perspective. That sets me thinking- Are souls female/ male/ asexual?? I wonder…

Do you remember a childhood recurring dream or nightmare? Good or bad tell us abt it:

More than one- and I still see them sometimes but it does not bother me afterwards.
I see myself being late – for something- somewhere.
I see myself appearing for an exam with no preparation.
I see myself losing my way- forgetting my way back.
I see an overflowing dirty toilet.
And err..I see myself being spied upon when changing.

I also used to see myself as having very long, thick tresses- not any more tho- finally guess I’ve accepted that its never to be.

Make me laugh, make me cry- put your words to it:

This is difficult. I mean I just can’t command words to my whim- so let me just post a link- which I hope does not atleast make you want to cry: Scholastic Lullabies

Do you regret the unfulfilled dream, inaccessible roads, uncharted lands?

No regrets as such- yes, a couple of dreams more- which if fulfilled I would consider as bonus. I would say that I’m pretty content with the way things are.

What is a friend to you? What are you to a friend?

A friend to me is someone whom I love, care for deeply- someone, whose happiness matters to me a lot- someone whom I need to reach out to, keep in touch often- doesn’t matter if they don’t/can’t find time. A friend is someone with whom I can be just be myself with no masks- fear of judgment .

Me as a friend- I don’t know if I can claim of being of any real, tangible help to a friend- I just know I feel lot of affection for my friends. I can only hope that I’ve been a good, caring friend to my friends.

A friend is someone who remains- irrespective of the geographical distance- with or without the background score, with or without the props or the prompter- with or without make up, with or without applause or may be even an audience- a friend remains even after the curtain falls…

T.S.Elliot measured his life with coffee spoons. How abt you?

With Icecream scoops- dollops of Life- every moment to be slurped, savoured, relished- and then sit back with the remembered flavors…

Write your own epitaph or if that is too hard how would you like your epitaph to read?

Someone who loved, relished and savoured “Love”

Someone who loved, relished and savoured being Loved

Someone who is very grateful for every moment, every experience, every person who crossed her path, grateful for every single memory…

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

R.I.P Steve Irwin

I was running around the house getting the chores done. It was Onam and my parents had come down to visit. There was plenty to do when my elder son called me with a dazed expression. He showed me a hedline in the paper- Steve Irwin killed in action!
All that I knew about Steve was from what my son used to tell me. All the tid bits of information that he gave me which I listened to sometimes absently, sometimes raptly. I was aware that my son admired the man and he had even told me that some day he hoped to go to Austrlaia and learn under Irwin. And now, this man was no more- I paused- I couldn’t believe it- I hadn’t even watched him on T.V- just from what my son had shared with me- I felt I had known him .

Needless to say, my son was extremely upset. Later, I read about him on the net, papers. He had so many fans and admirers all over the world. It is indeed a colossal loss to the animal world and animal lovers.

Of course among the umpteen adulatory obituaries, there was the random comment- accusing Irwin of having been too daring, to the point of craziness, and I found myself thinking on similar lines too- meaning I wished he had been a bit more cautious, careful. Now, his family had to face this irreparable loss- his children had become fatherless.

On Sunday, I watched the Marathon tribute to the Crocodile Hunter on Animal Planet- and I realized that the man was sooooo passionate about what he did. He just couldn’t have behaved in any other way. He clearly knew what he was doing, what he was dealing with, and he loved every bit. Passion has a way of propelling one to unimaginable limits- it’s a driving force one just can’t resist. Like Steve had said in one of his documentaries, He was put on this planet exclusively for animal conservation and creating awareness about endangered wild life. And in spite of a relatively short life, I guess he has gone a long way in achieving this.

But he’s gone now, in the most unbelievable, unexpected way- when though one had always kind of expected something of this sort to happen, now one realises that one had almost thought that he was invincible-

May his family find the strength and fortitude to bear this loss.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Its just there...

Yet again, our colony celebrated Independence Day- a senior, respected resident was invited to hoist the National Flag- after which, he spoke at length abt India, Independence, reminisced abt days of yore, lamented abt today’s generation…how children today did not know the significance of Independence-Freedom struggle- all they knew was it was ‘mithaai day” and all this while there were just a handful of gents and ladies- and many kindergarten kids running around with paper flags- chocolates cackling away- blissfully ignoring meek ‘shhhhs’ thrown at them by some of the irritated elders.

I pinned the little paper flag on my dress with a tinge of pride- I know not how to define patriotism- I just know I feel ‘something’ for my country- the land where I was born- I grew up mostly outside India- but now again for the past 17yrs, I’ve been on this soil…

Being concerned, worried about all the violence /corruption happening in my country does not stop me from feeling affection for my country- it is involuntary- reflex- it is just there- and has been there ever since I can remember- it’s a part of my feelings, thoughts and emotions which hitherto I’ve taken for granted as part of the person that I’m.

What have I done for my country- I can make no claims-
Poverty depresses me, Natural calamities scare me, Filth and squalor disgusts me, Corruption fills me with repugnance and frustration, Terrorism angers me- and yet I do nothing- (except may be blog? And what does that count for?)

I just pin a paper flag and sign The National Anthem with gusto…and I bring up two sons…

I remember while I was in the Middle East during my school going days- these National functions meant so much- just running into Indians in the souk, lagoon, airport- evoked a feeling of belonging irrespective of South- North- Madrasis- the fragmentation just dissolved in such scenario.
Coming out of the theatre after seeing the movie “Gandhi”, many years ago- one could sense that unified sense of belonging as the Indian audience emerged into the world outside that day…

Saw “Rang De Basanti” on T.V the other day- and I could relate to the fervor and emotion inspired by that movie-
I’ve not seen, experienced India before Independence- was the air different? Did the water taste different- I wouldn’t know- All I know abt that time was from books, movies, articles, poems- songs- and I’ve thought about the fervor, the passion that Gandhiji, Chandrasekhar Azad, Bhagat Singh- and the countless others- nameless and faceless- I’ve wondered about the love, the dedication, the devotion- that drove them to unimaginable limits of endurance- and sometimes there is a choke in my throat-

Today’s children-are even less aware- I realize I want to share with my children the significance- the importance of what those Leaders have achieved- but I am not often able to find words that would sound convincing, inspiring- if watching such movies do succeed in evoking some allegiance towards one’s country- it’s a good thing I feel- my son came home y’day and said how he and his friends had talked abt the movie- the leaders with awe… and that they felt like doing something for the country-

What is the necessity? I just feel it should be so- to feel responsible towards one’s country- its people- to feel that one owes something to the Nation- and if every child grows up with this notion- this feeling of allegiance- it would be better for everyone in the long run.

While I believe that geographical barriers need not dictate allegiance/affection for Humanity or for Creation at large- what better place than to begin but home?

It is a feeling that I cannot help feeling- that extra bit of warmth, thrill of belonging- for the soil that is my homeland- Its just there- I cannot deny it- I cannot pretend its not there-
My heart beats for my country…

Thursday, August 10, 2006

For My Brother!

mere bhaiyya, mere chanda, mere anmol ratan
tere badle mein zamaane ki koi cheez na loon
tere saason ki kasam khaake hawa chalti hai
tere chehre ki jhalak paake bahaar aati hai
ek pal bhi meri nazron se jo tu ojhal ho
har taraf meri nazar tujh ko pukaar aati hai...

( Movie: Kaajal, singer: Asha Bhonsle)

Thursday, July 27, 2006

I wonder...

The other day, I saw a movie on T.V- “Married to a stranger”- the heroine loses her memory totally after an accident. She can’t remember her husband, daughter, and mother. She is unable to feel any emotion for them. She is totally lost without a clue about the person she was- she feels sorry for them like a third person, but can’t bring herself to feel anything for them. She feels like a stranger in the house that used to be her home- nothing seems familiar- she wants to get away from their expectations and hopes. She wants to chart out a life afresh like on an empty slate- she begins to feel affection for the counselor who has been helping her out.

The husband is devastated, and finds it difficult to come to terms with the stranger that his wife seems to have become. He keeps thinking that her memory would return in the next moment- he finds that his wife has no longer the same likes and dislikes or passions. It’s like a whole new person only the face and body is the same.

So that got me thinking. Are we only our memories? Memories formed along the years thru experiences, circumstances- and conditioning? Without these we’re empty- a totally different kind of person?
Do we grow/learn to like/love somebody based on our conditioning- are we predisposed to certain behavioural traits according to values instilled in us? And so minus these factors we might never like/love the same person? Or does our affection/affinities sustain in spite of these variables? If yes, then is it what we call Karmic bonding? I have no clue…still I wonder…

Then there was this other movie: “Eternal sunshine of a spotless mind”- where there is this organization which undertakes to help a client to erase memories pertaining to a selected individual- the client is expected to provide all the memorabilia connected with the selected person.

So the heroine here decides to delete memories of the hero- and goes ahead and gets it done. The hero on coming to know of this is hurt and angered- and so he also decides to erase all memories of the heroine from his mind. And as he is lying unconscious while the procedure is going on, in his subconscious level, he realises that he doesn’t want to erase memories of her after all- as painful, bitter memories get deleted, he wants to cling to the sweet, poignant memories- he doesn’t want to let go of the beautiful moments- but he’s unable to stop the process- its like being on a speeding roller coaster that cannot be stopped. He is frantic trying to rescue the losing memories from getting erased forever…

And when the heroine is forming new relationships, he feels like the intruder is usurping his memories and identity. In an attempt to rescue the precious memories he tries to insert them into nooks and crevices of his memory where she did not belong- i.e.: in the time before she came into his life- his childhood.

The hero and heroine get attracted to each other in spite of the absence of their memories of their past together. In both movies, the heroines are worried if they’d be able to sustain their relationship in the wake of bad times, when the bitter memories resurface- but they choose to go ahead and forge their bond all over again.

So in the absence of the worldly/ mortal/ physical constants- i.e.: the memories based on our individual experiences and conditioning, what is it that paves the way for two individuals to bond, that unknown factor that guides them towards an affinity for each other- is that what we call Karma/ Destiny/Fate??? Is it about working out of certain Karmic debts? And if one had the option to select and delete unpleasant memories, enhance the good memories, then would the quality of relationships improve?

I’ve no clue- still I wonder…

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Am I?

Your Blogging Type Is Thoughtful and Considerate
You're a well liked, though underrated, blogger.You have a heart of gold, and are likely to blog for a cause.You're a peaceful blogger - no drama for you!A good listener and friend, you tend to leave thoughtful comments for others.

Something lost, Something missing

Monday, July 24, 2006

Tagged again!

Ceekay has tagged me- and I’m eager to do it- she has tagged me becos she says she wants to know me better- and somehow that makes me feel good!

From the moment I read her post, my thoughts have been in a clamor- so many thoughts romping about in such a hurry- some so totally unrelated- and each falling over the other, that I really have to sit down, catch hold of each one- and try to sort them out in some cohesive order- so here you are:

I’m thinking about:

What all to write in my tag- whom all to tag- who might respond and who might not- usually I do not tag anybody else, but this time I think I shall- because like CK said I’d like to know something more about some of the other bloggers whose posts I regularly read-

I’m thinking about my DH’s trip to B’lore today- I don’t like it when he’s to go out of station- even if it is only for 2 days- I miss him too much and I’m not at ease until he returns.

I said:

Right now- nothing- it’s just me and my thoughts. My younger son who is having a holiday today becos its Aadi amaavaasi- came to me some time ago and got me to do some kind of game- he gave me folded piece of chit- forbidding me to open it until he told me to- then he went thru a series of steps with me abt thinking a few numbers- which he got me to reduce one by one and finally when he asked me to open the chit- it contained the number which I was left with. I was surprised- and he did explain to me how he did it- but I understood nothing-

I want to:

Plenty of things- I’ve begun learning Bharatanatyam again- after a gap of 16 years- and I want to graduate from the adavu (steps) level and dance to certain songs that I’ve in mind.
I want to write and publish something spectacular someday….

I wish:
It was Thursday morning- when DH would be back from his B’lore trip.

I hear:

Sounds from the T.V in the hall- looks like my son has stopped playing- and has now settled down in front of the T.V.
I can hear the hum of the fan and the p.c. I’m straining to see if I can hear anymore sounds- but no- nothing else- our home is very near the railway track- and sometimes when a train comes hurtling down- I can feel the vibrations-

I wonder:
How I’d look with my dance make up- I never liked how I looked when I was young, and now that I’m older, I expect I’d look even worse…

I regret:
Not having joined Dance classes earlier.
Not having enrolled for M.A. I’ll do that next year.

I am:
Lazy, stubborn, loving, affectionate, possessive, short tempered, moody, temperamental, jovial- yup a confused bundle of contradictions-

I dance:
Everyday- I’m passionate abt dance- I would like to do the “gujrati garba” some day- I love the grace, the rhythm-

I sing:
Most of the time- ancient Lata hits- (e.g.: mohe bhool gaye saawariyaan, ehsaan tera hoga mujhpar, nagari nagari dwaare, tu jahaan jahaan chalega mera saaya, tum na jaane kis jahaan mein kho gaye)
However, now my sons have begun singing: woh lamhe, woh baatein- koi na jaane, suttum vizhi chudare, eh meri, meri zohrajabeen, ek mein aur ek tu hai, jiya dhadak dhadak and they silence me with their fervor and volume.

I cry:
too easily :- ( I’ve been told that I’ve invisible leaky tanks fixed to my eyelids- I really, really wish I could regulate my sobs sniffles and tears- they’re most unruly and unmanageable.

I’m not always:
Lazy. I can be bitten by the ‘hardworking’ bug once in a blue moon, when the white crow flies upside down…ok, I’m not that baad- I’m ok-

I make with my hands:

Edible food, though I don’t get all excited abt the kitchen, kitchen tools, vegetables and other stuff there.
I can do a bit of tailoring – tho only for myself- with paper cuttings-
A bit of embroidery, a bit of pencil sketching…

I write:
In my diary before typing in my pc. If I try typing my thoughts directly on to the pc, I’ve this lil picture inside my mind of these few bloggers who might find their way into my posts and then this picture kind of tends to distort the translation of my thoughts into words, and so I’ve to pretend that nobody is ever going to read my thoughts, and this is easier when I write with the good old pen in my good old diary-

I confuse:
I’m confused abt several things- mostly abt the discrepancies between what people say, seem and behave- but I’m learning to let go- and not try to analyse or make judgments.

I need:
Books, lots of books. I’ve this loooong list of book that I want to read- but am not able to get hold of them.
I need to get my music system and sewing machine repaired.
I need my parents to be healthy and cheerful always.
I need to see my brother now and then- talk with him- but he’s sooo far away…
I need to be with myself for sometime everyday…

And finally:

I’ve finished doing this tag- and my thoughts have become a bit disciplined- and there is relative calm in my mind- and now whom shall I tag- I’m supposed to tag 5 people, but I’m going to tag 9 people- because I’d like to read what they come up with, that is if they choose to do it.


Friday, July 21, 2006

Groping with Reality?

Truth, Reality/ Illusions/delusions- Maya, mirage, horizon- these concepts have been haunting me of late- everything seems so relative- one cannot be sure-

The Mumbai blasts- when I first heard of it, my first reaction was utter dismay, which was soon replaced by panic when I remembered that my 3 cousin sisters, their husbands- all of them traveled by train daily- to and fro from work- I frantically tried to reach them but all phone lines were jammed. I finally managed to contact one of them who assured me that all of them were safe. And then I found the respite to think of all the others who were still in the throes of anxiety and fear for their loved ones. Now my emotion was anger, helpless rage- which found expression in a wave of tears- my younger son who had been watching me all this while kept mumbling: “amme, don’t cry- mema and cheriamma are all safe”. But the tears and sobs did not subside-

I visited the site “Mumbai help” and was amazed at the gesture- faceless strangers- helping other faceless strangers- it was awesome- I’ve no words…

Today after ten days after the incident- Mumbai is “normal” (!!!???) people have expressed their grit, courage, anger, grief, angst, solidarity in several ways- blogging being one of them too- blogspot was banned- and now that has also been cleared- everything is back to ‘normal’.

And I’m wondering about meanings of some words- Truth- Reality-
The understanding of the reality of that one day, the differences in perspectives- how the event has changed different people:

The reality to those who lost their loved one/ones that day- their loss, bereavement- for them it is a singular event- they have to cope with the day to day absence of somebody important in their daily existence…somebody who just stopped coming home one day!

The reality of those in Mumbai who have survived- they’re safe, they’ve resumed life- they are traveling once again in trains- the daily routine- grind-

The reality to those whose loved ones escaped narrowly due to some quirk of Fate/Destiny- they came close to a devastating loss- and managed to escape and survive-

The reality to those like me- who are geographically far away- who have not suffered any direct ‘loss’, and yet watching the aftermath on T.V – the blood- the panic- the sorrow- the pain- of others- whom one doesn’t even know- for us the event is in multitude- we can see it only as a mass rampage- it is scary- its terrifying- its numbing…

The reality to the perpetrators- they, who planned, executed, waited and watched the consequences- their reaction? Are they happy? Satisfied with a deed well accomplished?

Which is the Truth? Reality?

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Rude memories...

I was catching up with Shankari’s blogs and reading one of her earlier blogs, in which she mentions that as a child she used to collect pieces of all kinds of random things from the neighbourhood; sent me pummeling down memory lane.

I too was fond of collecting little colored stones, tiles, pebbles as a child. And yes, I also loved wearing an assortment of trinkets, those days- I loved glass bangles, paayal/ anklets, pattu paavaadai . Looking back, I guess I must’ve looked quite a sight when I first joined college in Kerala after schooling in the Middle East. In Dubai, I think nobody really noticed how one dressed- at least they never commented, and so there I was totally ignorant of what a picture I must’ve looked then.

I used to wear these frock type midis- with frills and bows, red velvet slippers with embroidery , I had long hair which I plaited on either sides, wore these huge jingly jangly earrings, and a few hair fell in tendrils on either cheeks – a la shobhana from her “kanaamarayathu” days. To add to the effect I wore Kajal on my eyes- trailing like actresses from the 60’s , and not to forget matching glass bangles…I shudder as I type these words and wont be surprised if the reader shudders too as they read these lines. Still, let me venture to say that I did not perhaps look as ghastly as the image that these words tend to evoke in the reader’s mind.

However within a year of my hostel life, my friends succeeded in sobering me down with their affectionate teasing. I stopped lengthening the kajal beyond my eyes, pushed the stray tendrils of hair behind my ears until they grew to the length of the rest of my mane, abandoned my red velvet slippers and stopped wearing glass bangles- I still have my payal tho- but they remain unonbtrusive…

Monday, July 03, 2006

Gentle Awakening

They were 4 people, a husband, wife, son and daughter. They stood at my door step smiling- they told me that they had come to meet me- I was totally perplexed, becos I was sure I was seeing them for the first time. I ushered them inside and asked them to sit. All the while I was furiously trying to jog my memory cells trying to place them- perhaps they were friends of somebody whom we knew- and had come to meet us upon their request. They introduced themselves- told me their names- they had come all the way from England to meet me!

As I was trying to digest what ever they told me wondering what they wanted, what they expected- they assured me, that they expected nothing- they simply and plainly just wanted to meet me- talk to me- that they were members of a group ( Swaadhyaay) and they undertook to meet people and spread the message that God was not an external entity- he was dwelling within each one of us- and if we remembered that and behaved accordingly the world would be a wonderful place. They told me that they were inspired to do this by a philosopher ( Pandurang Shastri Athavale) who refused to be called a Guru- and whom they affectionately called “Dadaji”- meaning “elder brother” in Marathi.

They further informed me that they were about thousands of them who were at the very same moment visiting several homes and spreading the same message- as a tribute to their Dadaji as well as sharing their belief in Universal Divine Brotherhood. They expressed that there was no need to perform rituals, unless of course that gave an individual satisfaction0 that all one had to remember was to be aware, recognize and respond to the innate beckoning of our nature- that is to love all and everything. A nature that we were tending to neglect, forget in the daily business of Life. All perhaps that may be done was remember to thank that Divine Consciousness or Force within us – for being the driving force of our lives- and helping, guiding and protecting us in the course of our Daily Lives.

They politely declined offers of even tea/coffee- clarified that they expected no donations, no canvassing, persuasion- they undertook all expenses from their personal income- and all the group members were unified in this thought and concept wholeheartedly!

What amazed me was that these people set out on their endeavor with so much of sincerity, cheer and faith- all the way from another part of the world- with absolutely zero expectations, fully aware of the skepticism that they were likely to encounter- simply because they believed in it, and felt that they owed it to the Society to spread this message- whether their listeners agreed, accepted or not was not in their hands. They were so affectionate and genuine that most of us felt ourselves drawn to them in spite of our selves. Simply because they were so transparent and genuine in their mission- and there was so much of cheer and warmth among them.

Irrespective of whether we were able to imbibe or chose to spread the same message – we (my family and I) felt so touched and grateful for such people- that they undertook such an endeavor wholeheartedly with so much of sincerity and joy was admirable. They made us feel so much happier, contented- about feeling affection- about expressing affection -

Thursday, June 29, 2006

I wish...

A neighbour left today- her husband has been transferred to Mumbai, and she’s going to join him . Its been only a year since I got to know her- she came here to live in this apartment after her marriage last year. She is a sweet girl, very witty, charming and exudes warmth and cheer around her. Today, she came home to say Goodbye- and suddenly I wished I had taken more effort and time to know her better- I had always felt that she would be great person to get to know more- she had such a cheerful, endearing demeanour- I wished I had endeavoured to go beyond the ‘Hi’s” and casual banter- but I had always thought there was plenty of time left- and today as we said our Goodbyes, I’m filled with regret- and like in the story of the ‘sour grapes’ ,I tell myself- well, if we had got too friendly this parting would’ve been even more painful- still I wish…

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Out of Touch

The past week went by without net access- and I survived becos of my dance classes. The pain in my legs is still there but lesser. And one day I lost my purse- a big one – it just disappeared from within my handbag- everything else intact. I had not had an inkling of how it could’ve just disappeared. In fact when I first noticed that it was missing, I thought I might have forgotten to take it from home in the first place- that it could’ve been stolen seemed impossible. But when I looked for it high and low in my home- it was not there- there had been some loose change, a strip of Dart and another of Crocin- and a little metal idol of Vinayaka given to me by my Vallyamma (MIL). I did feel rather desolate abt the loss but my son and husband consoled me-

First my PC crashed. I was busy composing a comment on one of my friend’s blogs- and the screen froze. I proceeded to reboot the pc but it refused to come alive.
The technicians appeared after much pestering and took away the CPU. I suspected some viral mischief but thankfully only a benign fault was diagnosed. However, as usual we got the CPU only after a couple of days.

Next, our Broad band connexn failed to link- now I had to pester the network people- sometimes the line never went thru, sometimes when it did go thru- they never picked the phone- and then they went for lunch for over 2 hours- and eventually if somebody did pick up the phone out of sheer boredom- they asked me to check all the connexns, tug this wire, press that button- and then pronounced the profound judgment that something was wrong with our PC. I requested them to send someone over to check the connexns, but no- they want to set things right sitting right where they were- i.e.- abt 16 kms away from where my pc was located.
It had been a week now since I had lost touch with the world and I was seriously beginning to show withdrawal symptoms…all that I had learnt abt tolerance and patience from my Art of Living Classes was beginning to evaporate- breathing deep- musing over the transience of all things esp. something as ephemeral as virtual world was increasingly becoming difficult to accept- Maintaining a cheerful countenance was becoming impossible and my husband began to recognize the danger signals. He became desperate too that I gain access to the virtual world- to ensure domestic peace in real life…He succeeded in coercing the computer people to come over- and when this angel in disguise came and after twiddling with the pc, wires and hardware managed to set things right- I was overcome with gratitude- I thanked him profusely- and he realized what a messiah he had proved to be to this household!

I first went over to chek the comments to my last blog- and wowo! Felt great to read the abt ego gratification! thank you friends…

However all is not hunky dory as yet- my broadband connexn keeps going down- and I’m breathing deeply…
So when everything is fine- I’ll be languishing in the virtual world- reading blogs, trying to comment and otherwise its inhaaaaaaaaaaaale…exhaaaaaaaale…

Monday, June 19, 2006

Rediscovering Old passions!

Last Friday, I joined Dance classes- after a gap of 16 years, I’m coercing my feet to dance to the beat of the “Nattuvangam”- the rhythmic recitation of the dance steps .Tho my feet did find it difficult to keep pace at first, they soon found wings- and the Happiness, the Thrill, the ecstasy that I felt cannot be expressed in words. My feet was in agony for the first two days, but I was too happy to care.

This is how it came about:
Last Sunday, I was watching a programme on T.V- a Classical Dance Competition- the judge was from Trichy- and on an impulse I googled her name on the net- got her address and phone number, spoke to her, met her and she asked me to come on the coming Friday. She is much younger than me- and I guess I must be one of her oldest students. :-)

Her dance school is far from where I live- I’ve to reach there by 2 buses. On the first day, my elder son accompanied me until the 2nd bus stand- and would not leave until the bus left the stand. He is so worried if I’ll be able to go on my own and has been drawing maps and trying to teach me which bus to board, which direction to wait for the bus.

Just the prev week I had come across an article posted by a friend regarding discovering guidelines to identify one’s passion, and I found out mine- I knew it always but just reconfirmed it.
If anyone is interested, these are the questions:

How Do You Know When You've Found your Passion?
If you answer yes to most of these questions, you've found an activity you love. When you pursue what you are passionate about, your spirit is energized and renewed.

Do you lose track of time doing this activity?

Do you get excited just thinking about it?

Do you feel energized by it?

Do you dream about it?

Do you lose self-consciousness doing it?

Do you perform beyond your usual abilities when engaged in it?

Has your enthusiasm remained high over a period of time?

Do you seek out people who share this interest?

And also saw a movie on T.V on somewhat similar lines!

Shall we dance-

starring Richard Gere, Jennifer Lopez, Susan Sarandon.

Richard is happily married to Susan- has 2 grown up kids- life is pretty smooth, except that Richard feels a vague discontent- every day as he came home from work in a tram, he would notice a window on a building- a Dance school- and the silhouette of a young woman in the window- one evening on an impulse he gets down- goes up into the building and enrolls for dance classes- his tutor is an older woman- needless to say he’s disappointed that its not the young woman- Jen Lopez who is teaching him- after initial awkwardness, he begins to enjoy his classes a lot- he becomes more lively at home too- and his wife is surprised- she wonders if he’s having some affair and after much deliberation appoints a detective to trail her husband.

Meanwhile Richard tries to talk to Jen Lopez- but she stays aloof- and tells him not to come back for classes if he has not joined for the passion of dance- Richard almost stops his classes, but at the last moment he realizes he has come to love dancing- and Jen Lopez is also happy- a special bonding evolves between the two and she teaches him specially for a competition-
Meanwhile Susan is informed abt her husbands dance classes and she comes to see him perform at the competition with her daughter. Mother and daughter are amazed at his graceful dancing and the daughter cheers him loudly – Richard is distracted and fumbles- causing his dance partner to fall- and it ends up a total fiasco.

Susan is hurt that Richard had not told her abt his classes and Richard does not know what to say- he stops going to the classes-
Meanwhile, Jen Lopez is going abroad to study more dancing- and she writes to Richard saying that he danced really well- and she thanks him for helping her realize that it was Dance that she wanted to excel in- she shares with him her sad experience of the previous year where she and her partner had failed miserably in an International competition- and she had been so ashamed that she was hiding in this obscure dance school- now with Richard’s help, she realized that she wanted to go back to Dance- would he please come to the farewell party to dance just once more with her?

Richard shows the letter to Susan- and tells her he wont be going for the party- he also summons the courage to tell her, that he was so grateful to Susan for being so completely happy and satisfied with him- and he was afraid and ashamed to tell her- the person whom he loved the most, that there was a vague discontent within him- Susan understands- and next morning she leaves a tuxedo and dancing shoes for him and asks him to go and enjoy at the party.
Richard wears the tuxedo, shoes , gets a single red rose, goes to the place where Susan is working , gives her a rose and asks her to dance with him- Susan is overwhelmed- and they dance right there .
Later, they both go to the farewell party- where Lopez was waiting with the other dancer friends- Richard and Jen Lopez and dance together-
And they say their Goodbyes-
At home Richard begins to teach Susan to dance- and they love it-
In the closing scene we find the detective whom Susan had employed joining the dance classes!

Monday, June 12, 2006

The Hols are over...

I had been away on vacation...
The hols are over…and its back to Home sweet home…these hols were hectic filled with family functions and lots of travel- a bit of sickness thrown in…

First kids and me spent 10 days with my parents in Kerala, then we came back to Trichy becos we had planned a tour to Kolkotta, Darjeeling, Puri with 3 other families here. Two days before we were to start my husband came down with yet another spasm of kidney stone. While one doctor advised us to cancel our trip, another senior urologis gave us the go ahead- he asked to just carry painkiller tabs and injections- intra muscular with us. We almost decided to cancel our trip and the kids and our friends were totally disappointed- those 2 days were so filled with confusion and chaos- my husband was ready to go ahead. But I was apprehensive- anyways, we finally decided to go on- taking with us the painkillers- I decided to just go with the flow and surrender myself to the Almighty’s will…

The trip went fine- of course hubby did get pain attacks during the tour- and once he had to inject himself too- he was pretty brave thru the ordeal, our friends were very caring and attentive- and I found it very, very difficult to put on a brave, cheerful countenance whenever he was in pain…

Kolkotta and Puri was very warm, still we managed to do sight seeing- The serene and beautiful Birla Mandir, The Science City, Jain Temple, Dakshineswar, Belur Math, Kali Temple- just wished the streets were cleaner- and just as in other places in India , here too tourists were being fleeced even in the name of God.

Darjeeling was heavenly- but brrrr…it was sooooo cold- and I’m a person who finds trichy winters unbearable at times- so you can imagine my plight- our place of stay was divine- but it was just too, too cold- that one cannot think of anything beyond keeping warm- we did not take the famous toy train to save time- but the road was just as picturesque- the landscape, the monasteries, Padmaja Wild Life sanctuary- here, the environs were so beautiful- the animals so well kept and healthy- and the climate too was comfortable that day.

We went to the Tiger Hills to view the sunrise- at an unearthly hour 0f 3.30 a.m- the place was crowded- the trudge uphill was slippery- and we were breathless- there were local women- so fair and pretty cheerfully selling hot cups of coffee/tea- from huge flasks- As everyone waited for the sun break in the east- horizon- first , the clouds were lined with a brilliant auzure lining- and suddenly the sun erupted in a glorious burning globule- there rose an involuntary gasp from the people gathered- and everyone was cheering- all this in a second- before the sun disappeared behind the clouds again- but the whole place was bathed in sunlight- at such an early hour- tho there was no trace of the sun anymore- The magical moment had been so transient that looking back I wondered if I did see anything so specatacular-

We saw the Nepal India border, Gurkha War Memorial- The Batisia Loop,- indeed it was memorable trip.

At Puri, we stayed at a resort facing the beach- We visited the Jagannath temple, the beach, Konarak temple- Nandan Kanan Wild Life sanctuary- on our last day there, we were caught in a heavy cyclonic rain storm of unbelievable intensity - but thankfully it lasted for a very short time-

Thus we reached back safely- tired but happy- and I waas grateful that there was not too much of trouble – nothing more than we could manage…
and thank you all of you who have been wondering about my absence from the virtual world for their concern and enquiries abt my well being- I'm glad to be back in blogdom- and sooo many blogs to catch up with...

p.s: the tiny stone that was causing my husband so much agony came out soon after we reached trichy- he called up my parents and informed them: "your son –in- law delivered a healthy stone safely"

Thursday, March 30, 2006

How Happy am I?

You Are 56% Happy

You're definitely a happy person, even though you have your down moments.You tend to get the most out of life, though there's always some more happiness to be squeezed.

The past few posts of mine have been quite dreary and I wanted to write something cheerful for a change. But I've not been in the best of spirits - nor in the pinkest of health. Pains and aches can be so distracting - and whether it is age catching up or my net surfing- I've been afflicted with pains in my shoulder and neck for some weeks now-Only if one is able to think beyond one's physicality can one concentrate on anything- including the very simple act of going through one's daily routine- the aches and the accompanying anxiety sours my mood.

I try to stay away from the pc- as far as possible- I had to do my blog hopping standing- and in between my chores- so as to avoid continous browsing-

"Raaja paarvai" - roughly translated as "the Royal view" - is a term also used in jest to describe a stiff neck- and thats how my view had been this whole of last week- moving my neck even slightly was agony- and the mode of treatment was not pleasant either. In Ayurveda, we have this treatment called "Nasyam"- where by first after applying medicated oil on the afflicted area, followed by fomenting the region after which drops of medicated oil is poured thru each nostril. One has to deeply inhale the oil poured- and then the sinuses get cleared - finally one has to gargle with warm water- On the first day , I created quite a ruckus and DH had a tough time pinning me down to administer the treatment- My sons watched the proceedings in unabashed amusement.
However tedious the procedure is- the results were dramatic. My stiff neck and shoulders relaxed except for sporadic spasms of pain a few times during the day. Even that has gone now.

My elder son's Boards are over and he says the papers were easy. Once he had finished with Maths and Science papers he was like 'the holidays have begun'- tho Hindi and English papers were still left.
After the exams he went to the movies with his friends- and there was so much of planning and phoning- excitement and anticipation- they went to see' Thampi'- and he loved it. he wants to grow hair like Madhavan in the movie- groan- he regaled me with some glorious gory details in the movie-

Now he drives me crazy because he's forever behind his younger brother bossing over him- and the younger one has absolutely no intention of being bossed over- the ensuing war zone medley makes me go crazy- I'm swinging between extremes of mood swings- rage, fury and misery- every time I blow my top once in a way- I'm worried I'll give myself a heart attack- and try to take deep breaths- massaging my tense shoulders-

ufffff...yeah- so thats how happy I'm- and still I made it to 56%...nothing short of Miracle- I should say...

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Between Yesterday and Today...

Between last time that I posted here, and today, something among many things had changed. A person who had been living and breathing then was no more now- sure that happens every day at every corner of the world, but when it happens to somebody one has known to a little extent atleast , talked to- laughed with- the reaction, the experience is different.

On 18th sat noon, M maami -a neighbour from the flat upstairs called me and informed
me tearfully that R- the young married daughter of the people in the opposite flat had committed suicide in her huband's home ( which is near by).

At first, nothing registered. I just couldn't grasp anything that i heard and blabbered something like an idiot- simply because I could not believe what I had heard- that sweet, soft spoken girl- no more!! And when the truth finally seeped in, my first impulse was to try to rewind time and revoke the incident. I felt that if we tried immediately, we could undo the situation. I kept asking maami if she was sure that everything was indeed over- perhaps she was mistaken- perhaps she had been just injured- perhaps she had misunderstood the news- but no- maami had just returned after seeing the ‘body’- a person we called R was now ‘the body’.

It came like a bolt to us and the other neighbours. Besides, I was under the impression that she was happy in marriage- apparently, I was mistaken- she was having problems- with her MIL, SIL and hubby-
The last time( during diwali) I had seen her and talked to her, she seemed fine...
and it turns out that it was not a suicide- she was being physically abused- her MIL was not allowing the son to talk to her etc...and the girl had not even told her parents all this- they knew there were some problems but she had always maintained that he was a good man and things would be fine soon- I cant even begin to recount how the MIL behaved later when the body arrived after the post mortem- the happennings were extremely disturbing-

We are now hearing all kinds of stories of the harrassment meted out to that girl... she was not being allowed to even phone her parents- and perhaps we’ll never get to know what actually happened that morning.

The parents are totally devastated- case has been lodged against the husband and MIL- seems she was hit in the head- and then they tried to make it look like a case of hanging- and now they have the gall to say she was having an affair- and all of us know that it is just impossible- the relatives of the girl are now telling her parents that they should've brought the girl home- but they were not aware that things were so bad- seems the girl had not told them... whenever they
asked her, seems she would say that her husband was a very good person at heart and she was sure that soon things would be fine...

Anyways, I too went for the condolence- I saw R – ‘the body’ lain on the floor- she looked so serene and peaceful- almost like she was smiling- she looked emaciated- she had always been slim and had even seemed to have gained some weight when I had seen her last, but now she looked emaciated. Needless to say, the scene was heartwrenching- I came back with a depressed soul and a pounding headache-

The next few days had been very upsetting for all of us here in this apartment block...and am just not able to stop thinking about her- I keep remembering the times I talked to her- how she had burst crackers with my sons during diwali- how we used to tease her when her
husband used to call her on phone so frequently after the engagement-how we had attended her wedding-

So many questions kept haunting me- abt her last moments- she had not called her folks for more than a month- she would’ve longed to see her parents- she would’ve felt so lonely, unloved during her last days- seems she had not been eating even- and now she is beyond all pain and sorrow- all in a matter of a few moments…