Selfie with friends

The highest point of the year gone by 2015, for me, was its last month.

Loads of things were happening at a very high speed in December, but one  thing that kept me pleasantly preoccupied was a reunion with few friends from good old college days. The warm memories, the anticipation to recreate the carefree atmosphere from back then, the curiosity to know more  about them than what’s put on FB… the whole cocktail  of emotions was so potent, that it kept me heady … that too without an iota of any kind of spirit!

It’s been 11 years since we parted our ways. I was so looking forward to feel young again… to actually roll on floor laughing (not just type ROFL )… to talk (sense/ nonsense) non-stop… to dare to do something stupid…in a nutshell  I longed to catch a glimpse of the madness that Manipal had been for us!

While recreating this madness I hoped to be able to find that streak of craziness, spontaneity, passion, wildness… which I call “the keeda”(literal meaning  is worm), which I feel is lost within me, subdued by “life”. It was this keeda which added zing and drama to my life back then. It was because of this keeda each moment was fuller than expected. It was the drive for the unexpected to happen.

And then… it got lost. It was time to grow up and take responsibility! Compromises and logic shut its voice down. Routine and more responsibility took away its fangs. It was made docile… but I know for sure it isn’t dead! I feel it  wriggling sometimes trying to awaken from its latency. Whenever i felt cornered it would nudge me to do something random but reasoning would prevail.  Or when surrounded by the vast expanse of the sea or mountains I could feel it stir. In eleven years, “time” and “life” have helped me find more aspects of myself which I didn’t think I had in me. I feel secure, confident and whole but I miss my keeda. it’s time now for my mature self to befriend the keeda again.

Reunion was the perfect setting! It was to be the reunion of us four friends from a lager group of 11 …and hopefully my keeda too.

We met. We talked.We laughed. We recounted umpteen number of flashbacks from college. We exchanged gifts. We bared our scars. We shared our dreams. We rejoiced. We celebrated. It was all so organic.  there was  no awkwardness. We took off from where we left. It was magical. It was therapeutic. Oh yes! We had our share of drama too! 3 days passed away in a whiff!

Taken with Lumia Selfie
“When hours feel like moments, you know you are with good friends” Emily beckett.

We are back to our battlegrounds. I feel more refreshed than normal vacation (though we do much more in them). I feel proud of my girls… let’s face it, we have faced many a storms and that’s not stopped us from sailing! I feel immensely grateful to be able to meet my friends again. I hope we are able to make it little more frequent and not wait for another 11 years, and next time maybe  meet our larger group.

As for the keeda I have a new one which is determined to find my old one.


Lessons from a Finch

Last month we bought a couple of finches. Sturdy, low maintenance with a soothing chirp.They were bought as pets for Swadha …to give her a hang on what it means to take care of another living creature. She did her bit fairly well…but sadly one of them died.

I had no heart to see another one meet with same end…in its cage. I wanted to set the other one free… meet its destiny… out in the open as a free bird.

With some persuasion I got the blessing to do the honors.

I opened the lid hoping the bird to leap out immediately…spread it’s little wings and embrace its new found freedom. I wanted to witness this moment and pay tribute to the one that died… for it was for him that this one got set free.

This little bird had a valuable lesson for me.

Instead of flying away, it continued to do its thing in the cage. Pecked on its seeds…took little flights bar to bar like nothing momentous was waiting to happen. It chirped and went about its routine with no hurry. I watched this curiously… I though maybe it couldn’t see the open lid. So I prodded it towards the opening. It flew about with a bit of agitation, but didn’t seem to be ready to leave yet. I watched and I watched for a while… waiting to see the little bird’s tryst with the world outside. Then even I got busy with my routine… leaving the lid open.

As I left the scene I realized the bird did not act any different from us or…rather me. The cage was gone but not from the head. The bars which made the cage its home… gave it the confidence to flit and fly at will… no matter how limited the space was. Maybe the outer world scared it just like it scares me. I too fear the consequences so many times that I fail to take my chances.

Here I waited for the little bird to meet its grand destiny while I was keeping my options closed.

When I returned after a couple of hours , the cage was finally empty. The finch found its courage to step into this new world.

It left teaching me a valuable lesson for life:break free the barriers in the head. Each moment holds limitless opportunities, it’s up to me to grab it!

This couldn’t have happened in a more apt time. It’s new year…time for new determinations and I make this one in honor of the finch that flew away…I will take my chances.

Everyday Heroes

This is to the unsung heroes of everyday life!!!

There is nothing glorious about a person doing his job day after day…sometimes with enthusiasm…sometimes lazily…sometimes even contrary to one’s beliefs and conviction.Once you are adults you fend for yourself. that’s the rule, isn’t it? So, what’s the big deal?

Even i hadn’t thought about it till i became indirectly involved in witnessing injustice unfolding on a dear one.

A man works as an employee to provide for his family. As a single working member he has many liabilities…old mother, sister at home, a growing child…and little of whatever wishes he can manage to fulfill, to remind himself he is alive and he has dreams too.It’s not much to ask but if you have an unreasonable superior it’s a totally different ball game.

“Animality” is one of the evil life states i have studied in Daishonin’s Buddhism.It comes from the “survival of the fittest rule” of Jungle but in much ghastlier way. Human beings who are top of the pyramid of evolution, meant to encompass feelings of love and compassion choose to work from their primal instincts of torturing the weaker or lesser and flattering the more powerful ones.Only difference is animals do it to satisfy their hunger humans choose for much baser reasons.These so called  “humans” bully another because they have control over the livelihood of the junior.They feel it’s the birthright to fling indignities on people whose hands are tied by love for their near ones.And if the torturer is also the owner and board member of the company, then God save you!!!

Weighed down by responsibility of family these underprivileged ones are nothing less than heroes to put up with hostile environment day after day… waiting for that  phone call which can take them away from this living hell!It takes enormous courage to get out of the bed and go to work waiting to be ticked off even when you are right. It takes a lot of character to hold on to your principles and still think of ways so than your unforgiving employer can benefit!

Yes they are heroes indeed, for they have chosen to act out of love when others around them have chosen to be (not animals for animals care too when they aren’t hungry) brutal.

Flower woes: V-Day

I don't exactly remember when Valentine's Day became a craze in India. Think it was around my late teens. It became a rage all of a sudden. All the pent up love from hormone rush was pouring all round us and there were us – a bewildered bunch, who spectacled this display of amour pretty much the same way cows look at moving traffic (in our country), with a bit of anticipation. Is there a secret admirer? Will I get flowers too? All of it remained a big secret as nobody ever… let's say manned up.

Then I graduated to college and first V – day there became quite a memory. Early morning the Indira block, entrance of our hostel looked like a huge flower shop and then there was a huge life size teddy bear waiting for some lucky girl. There was an explosion of romance in kinds. For us first years mostly coming from conservative families, with little or no exposure to this level of consumerism, it looked nothing less than wonderland. And, there were the excited girls who had come down to receive the flowers. Different tones and decibels of “aaawww”s rang everywhere around. There was jumping and hugging and few tears of joy too. Plans of evening followed — what am I going to wear? How I will do my hair? Which class I will bunk to get makeup done? And so on…

That year we singles formed our 'Lonely hearts' club'. We also planned the night out. First year was fun, as almost whole batch of girls and boys were there. So we did what we always did…. just goofed around. Subsequent years the Lonely hearts club just kept getting lonelier, as many of our patrons found company, our lot dwindled. We kept up with our dining out tradition. Our conversations became confused and thick with emotion. First, how lucky we were to have each other. Second, the couples- latest, cutest,unlikeliest, weirdest, etc… After sometime came resolutions. How we would turn a new leaf, or do a makeover and not land up here again… ever. Then came realization how happy we were being single — no drama, no fights, so much more time to focus on self and our hobbies.And, another round of how lucky we were to have each other… and hope nothing ever comes in between! (please God don't let me be the last one standing)

Phew! It was a relief to cross that date off from calendar.

In my final year, the unexpected happened. I had met my husband (now) just a couple of months before valentines day. He lived in another city, and honestly I didn't think anything serious would happen. I had long stopped going to the hostel entrance to check for flowers. My day passed like any other and I was told around tea time that a bunch of flowers waited at the entrance with my name on it. I brushed it off as prank….but went to check nevertheless. Yes I found the bunch of by-now wilted flower lying with the ones rejected (sent by undesired candidates). By then i was so conditioned to not getting flowers that i couldn't accept the fact. So I spewed venom on the remaining loyalists of lonely hearts club for playing me. It was only later at night when my husband called that I got to know it came from him (I had a hunch). That was my first and last time of getting flowers. I remained permanent member of Lonely Hearts' club, as we went for our traditional dinner out for the last time, before parted onto our different ways.

Indeed Lonely hearts' club holds a very special place. Every year since, on valentines day, I remember this special group with special fondness.

After I found my so-far-permanent valentine, my husband refused to become victim of this “farce ” created to “promote consumerism. “He is not ready to pay more for flowers on valentines day. Don't take me wrong, he isn't a miser…. rather he is quite a spender. But, this is against his rationality and principle. So, I still get flowers but with slight deviation from regular!

And,here is a glimpse of how we do it…

Remind me
Practical love
And then at the traffic signal near inOrbit mall
My cheap valentine...


The Weird Das

In my last post I had mentioned we are a bit weird.

I would like to give you a glimpse of our weirdness.

A normal weekend people like to laze, read or just relax. We do the same only our methods of relaxing are bit different.

My husband grabs on djambe to practice along with my daughter. The hitch here is arr…. he doesn’t quite know how to play. He just slaps or pounds on djambe to create what he thinks is “rhythm”. My daughter plays along, she gets her set of toy maracas and both create enough cacophony to give the original Cacophonix from Asterix serious competition. The quiet and peace is broken enough to give a splitting headache early morning.

Stop them…. you can’t. Can anybody stop the sun from rising….can anyone stop waves from crashing. This is the intensity and passion they attack on the instrument.

Beginning of a glorious day
The das version of cacophonix
Breaking peace
It was absolutely jarring. But they were without any care.How does one curb this pure enthusiasm?…even if it is totally out of sync.
What’s a girl to do when rest of the family seem incorrigible….well joining them seemed most sensible thing to do.They did look happy…So I joined the party too!
Family that goofs together stays together

Together we created the “beginning of civilization” entertainment like how god meant it to be.


the awesaome weird family
The Wierd Das… all three of them

This is my second attempt in blogging!

The first one didn’t quite work….let’s say serious writers’ block. When I had started that one I felt I would just wow the world with my… let’s say superior abilities (yeah….I feel I am grandiose too!!!). then I didn’t have too much to write. I did manage to write a few stuff which was ok but words wouldn’t flow. So I thought of keeping it simple this time around, make fresh start writing what I know best….my sometimes-boring-sometimes-weird-funny life.

Above is my family portrait (sorry…. done by me). You see I love blogs with illustrations in it. I find it endearing so even if I am not a cartoonist or artist I thought of putting it nevertheless. Everytime I make it may turn out to be different depiction, so I have come up with this guide —
Oval face with thick mustache will be my husband.
Round face with mop of curly hair will be me.
Small variable face will be my 5 year old daughter’s…. Oh! Check for long eyelashes. (that’s her concept of depicting girls)

We live as a small nuclear family in a big busy city. Each of us have lot of quirks to fill in the descriptions and I shall do so time to time.

For now I am happy to get started.