Thursday, 26 September 2013

Badminton and old days

Today I played Badminton, my favorite outdoor game, after so many years. It is so strange that we seldom indulge in our favorite things though we always long to!

Anyways, today I played badminton after our dinner. It felt wonderful to play. I played with my husband and my kid, Ashmit. Ashmit's one neighborhood friend also played with us. While playing, I fell for a reverie. I got to reminisce those golden old days when we all siblings (including my relatives' kids) were small and carefree and used to gather at my native in every summer vacation. We all then made pairs for badminton and then started playing on our big terrace. We all played and if some other pair's shuttle cock banged in our area, we started playing with that, ignoring ours. It used to be a lot of fun. I missed all of my brothers and sisters especially my elder brother, Rohit bhaiya, who is tall and reflexive enough to stand at one point and play shots by just sticking to his spot while we all kept running here and there to hit the shuttle cock. We all had played, laughed and cursed each other for playing better and shared countless high fives at the end of each game.

When someone couldn't get to play either because of the lack of the rackets or another player, he or she had to wait for the turn. We had set a fair rule for the game that who'd drop the shuttle cock for ten times, she or he would be out and the person waiting would get to play. And not just terrace games, we also loved to play Business (it was then known as 'Vyapaar'), Ludo, Snakes and ladders, video games and so many others to count on. We always fell for fighting. "I'll play" or "It's my turn now" or "No! It's my turn now" or "You played na? Now your turn will come after five players" and so on. How much fun filled those days were!!

Nonetheless those days are gone but their memories are still branded in my mind as fresh as winter breeze. But I will make it a sure point that now I will play my favorite outdoor game everyday. If not everyday then at least seven days in a week ;).

But I can't help myself thinking. Why we grew old? Why we got so many silly responsibilities? and why we have to be mature? I wish we all could run again as we did in our childhood years; I wish we all could gather and enjoy ourselves; I wish we all could be children again! But alas! those days are gone, never to come back ever.

But good old days are always good to cherish. I still long to share the same frenzy with my siblings what I used to. But now everyone is busy in their lives, earning money or taking care of their respective families. However, my longing is still there, breathing somewhere secretly.

No Regrets Just A Happy You


Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Did I do anything wrong?

Sumit has joined a new company after working for five years in the previous one. I thought to gift him a tablet (gadget, not the medicine) as in to say best wishes for his new venture. I searched like a maniac and asked few people in the process. Finally after juggling with many options, I settled down for Samsung. I got a nice Samsung tablet in my budget (Okay! Not in my budget as I had to pay a little extra but the reaction with which Sumit spurted out on receiving it made it worth going extravagant) and ordered it online. He loves to read news all the time and checking on his email accounts and Facebook and so many other sites. His laptop has stopped working and I doubt it will ever be fine again. Also, he hasn't updated his handset yet, I thought to solve his predicament by giving him a nice gadget. Hence, I bought a tablet.

When he returned from his office on the first day and I gifted him the tab, he went all shocked and amused. He couldn't believe I was giving him such a nice gift. Anyway, it's my habit to keep gifting people (only to those whom I love). He was so happy that he hugged me and said thank you. He looked like a small kid who had received his first award without putting an iota of effort in it (I did all the frantic online research and went to the electronic shops while he sat comfortably in his AC office ;)). I was so delighted to see him happy. Then he went busy with the tab to understand its functions.

Since that day whenever he is at home, he keeps working on his tab. I even tease him by saying that someone has gotten ill. That is why he is with a *tablet* all the time but his attitude drains my efforts to catch his attention. He will look up at me, throw a terse smile and if I am privileged, I'd receive a grin and then again he will go back to his tab screen, searching for I-don't-know-what.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Parents are wrong too sometimes

Parents often think they are right; that what they do is always correct on the moral basis; and they teach right attitude to their children happened one thing that put me off guard. I was forced to think about what I have said to my son only to repent later.

This morning when Sumit was going to drop off Ashmit to his school bus, I told Sumit to talk Ashmit about being recalcitrant after coming back from school. He doesn't listen to me easily and creates much nuisance. Sumit said okay and then they left. Thereupon, I got busy in tiding up my kitchen.

After few minutes when Sumit returned, he told me that he had discussed what I had said to him.

Sumit, "One thing I'd like to draw your attention towards is, never ever said Ashmit that you will also not listen to him in return to his tantrums".

I was washing my hands. I asked, "Why? What happened?"

Sumit, "Because I asked Ashmit that why you doesn't listen to your mumma after coming back from the school. He said that he doesn't want to"

My hands stopped as it hurt me but I didn't react much. Rather, I responded and asked why he said so.

"When I asked, he said because you keep him hungry. He doesn't like it and that is why he doesn't listen to you"

I can't describe my feelings here. I was shocked, hurt and vindicated all at the same time. As a parent, I tend to think that what I was doing was right. But here, my son had made me realize my mistake nonetheless I winced at his words.

Actually what used to happen that when Ashmit comes back from school, he simply keep throwing tantrums for a while. I keep telling him to change, wash his hands and face and then settle down for lunch but he just doesn't listen. Then I also decided to reciprocate the same. Not to teach him a lesson. Instead, to make him realize how does it feel when someone doesn't listen to you while you keep barking like a dog. When he asked for lunch, I told I'd give it later. Because you chose not to listen to me. Therefore, I have chosen the same for you. I did it for one day only.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Plan of the decade - A half night out

It feels so wonderful that I am snuggled on my couch in this cold weather and doing one of my most favorite things : Writing. Yes! I am writing and carrying a plan of celebrating a half night out today. Half night out bole to (means) staying up till late at night but sleeping right before the sun rays knock at your door. So may be I will sleep by two or three in the morning. It has been long that I have opted for any kind of night outs but today is the day to avail and I am a curious creature about it.

So here is the plan of the decade. I will write, write and just write. May be will listen to some of my favorite songs, drink orange juice or eat one or two biscuits in the process. There are also the modicum of chances that I may fall for a ten minute shut eye but that's again, gonna be good for me. I remember the kind of night outs I used to have with my parent, sister, brother, sister-in-law and my naughty nephew. We all sit together, stay awake till 2 AM, watch horror movies and then proceed towards the kitchen to make Maggi by holding one another's hands. I become the cook. My nephew and I keep our eyes around just in case if any ghost appears behind the shelves or the window or the kitchen door. Quickly we make our late night noodles and run towards the room, without looking behind. And then the magical moment arrives for enjoying those scrumptious Maggi meal. Room light remains dim because my father sleeps (Yes! I and my sister sleep in our parent's room when we are at my native. There are many spare rooms in our house but they prefer us to sleep in their's. It feels great!). Then we all talk in hush and reminisce the horror movie scenes. We laugh hard, teasing one another. My mother chides us for staying awake till late but we ignore her. Then she too gets up and mingles in our conversation. In between, my father wakes up because of our loud noises and scolds us to sleep but again, like stubborn kids we never opt for sleep until we finish our shares of Maggi. Then we drift apart to our respective rooms. I, my sister and my nephew sleep altogether in my parent's room. My nephew is such a naughty boy that he never lets me sleep and keep posing like ghosts, only to scare me But he is a sweet kid.

Oh!! I am getting highly nostalgic and before I run into tears, let me say bbye from here and do my other writing work. See you in my next post. :)

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

End of a trail and beginning of a new journey

When you read book, you just don't peek into someone other's mind but also you travel to different places. A book takes you to entirely a new or may be an old familiar place but with an entirely new vision. And seeing a place or event/s through someone other's way is an exciting procedure plus learning endorsement too.

Also, if you are fond of books and own a library on your name (like ME), I bet you'd be the appropriate person to understand the intensity of the joy when I fetched another book. It is so exciting and so curious infused feeling to pick up a new book. It feels awesome and I go through such frenzy whenever I am about to finish the last few pages of the current novel and am about to dig into a new one. I always keep more than one fresh unread books in advance in my library. This way I get the motivation to finish a book as soon as possible and get the joy of plucking a new one.

Recently I have finished "And the mountains echoed" by Khaled Hosseini. It's a thick novel and a good read. I admit I got bored in the middle as I prefer to read slim books yet I picked it up because Khaled is well known for his writing style and story telling skills. Well, honestly speaking the book touched my heart. I found it a wonderful read and spent a quality time reading it. I visited Shadbagh, Kabul, Paris and some other places with this story, met so many new characters and munched on various daily life events merging perfectly with the story line. Overall, And the... is an interesting read.

Now I have picked up a new book named Wise and otherwise by talented and versatile Sudha Murthy. The author is the wife of Narayan Murthy, the Chairman of Infosys. The book is a short story collection, based on the author's real life experiences. I have already finished initial few chapters and they had managed to catch my attention. Stories that Sudha Murthy reminisces are honest and leaves a brimming impact. I couldn't help myself thinking about the real life characters portrayed in the stories; some larger than life and some as tiny crawling creatures on the floor. Because of short stories, I find it a relaxing read. I can read comfortably while finishing each story in ten minutes or so. Like this one, her other books also have got translated into all the major languages in India. Picking up this one after the fat And the mountains echoed has given me simple serene time.

Sudha Murthy

And the greater responsibility is...

Today I was caught by a moment. It struck me with bountiful of surprise followed by glee. I found the moment worth treasuring on my blog.

Our kid has participated in National Cyber Olympiad (NCO) and the paper is due tomorrow (on Thursday). He had already solved some of the initial chapters and was busy in completing unfolded ones.

Today I caught him surreptitiously looking for the answers on the back of the book provided. It startled me for a moment. Where I was living in an awe seeing him doing every chapter successfully and that too without consuming much time and hassle, now I could gather the reason behind all of it; behind most of his right answers. I was displeased of course. But I felt it was uttermost important to teach him the bigger responsibility and that amend his mistake and to not practice again in the future.

When I caught him looking at the answer page, I interrupted right off. He didn't expect me discover his own planned clever trick. When I asked, he held his head low and admitted that he had seen some of the previous chapter's questions on the answer page. I didn't chide him nor ignored this. Rather, I asked him in a low tone whether he had realized his mistake. He said 'Yes! I know mumma that I had done wrong thing. But I won't repeat it again'. I was relaxed to hear. At least, he was sincere on this front.

I held him by his shoulders and explained, "Listen Ashmit! Committing a mistake is not a big deal. It is not a bad thing as it is the human foible. Mistakes do happen. But the deal becomes much greater if you don't realize it and not take any actions to amend it. If you have realized that you have done a mistake, you must correct it by not repeating it again. If you use your brain, you will learn more. By cheating, you will reach nowhere. Will you repeat it?"

"Yes mumma. I will not cheat on again. I will use my brain to solve the chapter but please! Don't tell this to papa. He will scold me"

I assured him that I won't but as it was an important matter for me, I had decided to talk to my husband in private about it. Anyways, Ashmit completed his chapters and learnt so many things along. He enjoyed MS Paint and learnt various tools and even drew some nice pictures on it.

When Sumit returned form his office, much to my amazement and shock, Ashmit came and admitted to his mistake. He explained how he tried to look on the answer page secretly and how I caught him doing so. He promised the same thing to his father that he will not repeat his mistake again; that he will always use his brain to solve anything.

I stood in a daze. I marveled at his courage to come upfront and accepting his doing with no fear. Sumit felt so happy that he hugged him immediately. We both appreciated Ashmit for his bold step to say the truth. 

This was the moment for us, the parent, to be proud of. 

Friday, 13 September 2013

Say YES to NO - Next Opportunity

Everything has its pros and cons and when a negative word can be infused with a positive meaning, it will be no more considered into that negative parenthesis. In the similar fashion, 'NO' has been counted as often maligned, often unpleasant word to listen.

If you want to buy something of your favorite and parents say 'NO', you start sulking inside. If you want to visit a place and the spouse says 'NO' upfront, you silently prefer to curse. If you have done an outstanding job at the workplace thinking it will steal the show but the manager spits 'NO' right at your face, you feel like killing your own manager. These all and many more examples that houses the painful word 'NO' lets you feel bad and you become a helpless creature minus someone at your rescue.

But you can now get a better thing; you can now visit a better place and you can now work far better if you take a single persistent word NO as Next Opportunity rather than no opportunity. By saying it out loud inside your head elicits the positivism; it brings happiness and energy along with it. Accepting a negative word in a positive context can turn the way of your thinking and hence, the lifestyle upside down. If someone says NO for your idea, take it as a challenge instead of feeling low inside. The moment may be calling for a better opportunity. After all, the Hollywood movie star Sylvester Stallone would never be able to build the brand of his name if he had taken all the film producers' denial as negative gestures. He had written a story and literally knocked every producer's door to make it a movie casting him in the lead role. Film producers were ready to make a movie out of his story but were equally reluctant to cast him as the Hero. But Sylvester had that concrete belief in himself and with every NO, he stepped forward, grabbed the next opportunity and turned his life over a new leaf. Every NO meant next producer (opportunity) for him and this way a highly entertaining Rambo series were made and thus a trusted brand of Stallone took the world by storm.

A brand made after myriad 'NO's

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Can a mother-in-law turn into a mother?

Recently I have been seeing advertisements of an upcoming daily soap. Usually I don't watch TV soaps except for one but in between my favorite show, comes several advertisements and the upcoming TV serial I am talking about is the one that I see during such breaks.

So the concept of the serial is quiet simple. It is, as I have gathered after watching the advertisements for few times, trying to resuscitate an archaic and proverbial quest that "Can daughter-in-laws be daughters?". The ad comprises of different women carrying the same message that why daughter-in-laws can not be treated as daughters? Some daughter-in-laws speak about their agony while some mother-in-laws speak about if they weren't treated as daughters, why should they treat their daughter-in-laws as daughters?

The topic is sensitive and fairly elaborated to talk about. I'd be dealing it on few fronts. May be in some other post I will deal with the other equally necessary facets. It's true that mother-in-laws have always been considered as violent human beings; they are considered (or mostly rumored) as heartless ladies with fire spitting mouth. Whenever she speaks, it will put daughter-in-laws (D-I-Ls) on fire i.e. she believes in ruining the lives of their D-I-Ls. I have seen many Hollywood and Bollywood movies portraying M-I-Ls as monsters. And why only movies? These days, TV serials too have proved themselves no less than big flicks. Flip to any channel, you will surely find a M-I-L portraying a vamp role in more than one daily soaps.

But I am not here to carry forward the same quest. Rather, I am here to toss the situation this time. Let's flip the coin and face the other side so that we can better understand the real face of the situation. What movies and serials show are not quite true. Please don't abide by them. There are several M-I-Ls who have proved themselves better than their D-I-Ls' own mothers.

I agree that D-I-Ls have several issues like adjusting in a new family with new family members with different tastes, the agony of leaving parents behind, dealing with the other difficulties and what not. They think they are alone at their new home. They are alone at their in-laws house. Why don't they think if they have left one mother behind, they have found a new one? Why don't they make their M-I-Ls their confidante? The preset notion of "Mother-in-law is always bad and wrong" stops them to do so. Unless you understand your mother-in-law, never ever pass such statement. Mutual understanding has everything to keep a relationship working.

Love your M-I-L and get the same in return

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Mystified and glorified Nandhi hills

Last three days were a pack of holidays and on the morning of very first, we decided to go to Nandhi Hills. We had already visited this place and I had blogged about it too here A meet with nature :: Nadhi Hills. But this time, some of Sumit's friends were tugged along as well.

So the morning started ridiculously early. I woke up at 3AM!!! Don't ask how much effort I had to put in to get up at such wee hour. Anyways, I had bath, we all got ready and after around one hour say by 4.15, we left from our car. I drove first for the initial 30 kilometers. I tell you a secret. Whenever I drive, Sumit's heart literally jumps into his mouth. He always worry when I drive. Not that I need to work on my driving skill but it's him who needs to control his fear and regulate his heart beats. After that, we caught up with our friends on the way who were in other car. Then Sumit decided to drive for the rest of the entire journey.We all whooshed for the beautiful hills.

When the clock struck 5.30 AM, we were just inches away from the main spot of Nandhi hills but we could encounter the floating clouds and mist up above the sight. It was thrilling to see that. I had never walked through them. Last time when we were there, the sun was already shining in the sky and there was a warmth in the environment. No trace of mist or cold could be found that time. But this time, the scenario was reversed. The sheer imagination of walking among the clouds excited me with gust. But the road for reaching the top is quite risky. It has got high and some very high hair pin bends. There I learned that on such tricky roads, the car should be in its first gear otherwise it will be hard to drive. Thankfully I was not driving that time as the bends were highly scary to my sight.

Finally we made it to the top spot. There was such a heavy nip in the atmosphere that every single person was loaded with thermals. The weather was heavily misty. In fact, the mist was raining on us. We got wet of course as the result. Nandhi hills is prominently popular for its sunrise view but this time, there was no trace of sun. It was itself dozing heavily behind the clouds and mist. We were walking among the clouds. It was a very beautiful experience. All of us were talking and laughing. It was around 6 but it didn't feel so early as there were lots of people chattering around. Tea and dosa stalls and a single restaurant there open at 8. So sometimes you might have to curb your tea/coffee cravings.

Nandhi hills on a clear day

The curvy ramp enveloped with mist

Thursday, 5 September 2013

A Thank You note on Teachers Day

Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well.
Aristotle, Philosopher 

December 5, 1962 (the birth date of Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan, a great teacher himself) marked the date to honor and respect the intricate contribution of those special people who not only educate but also create a better society and thus, a far better nation. Such special people are known as Teachers for us. 

If I recall my academic days, there comes a feeling of serenity that I got the golden chance to get educated with such teachers that not just taught me but also filled me in with high morals, socially accepted behavioral patterns and lots other elements that I still endure, I still possess. Their passion, gusto of teaching with unique patterns and the personalities they carried with them are still stamped subtly into my memories. Let me name a few of them so that I too can relish some of those beautiful memories and pay a heartily thank to them.

When I was in std. 7th and 8th, my favorite teacher was our Punjabi language teacher named as Harjeet Kaur. We, all the students, tend to call our teachers miss and sir. Harjeet miss was an ethereal beauty. She was slim, fair complexioned and had an adorable flair for teaching. She believed in teaching with fun and enjoyment. She taught with books as well as with some other fun activities. Sometimes she allowed us to play interesting games in the class so that the sincerity and the interest towards the study in the students couldn't get loosen up. She endured a beautiful smile. She taught me some manners too. I was among the best students in Punjabi. I loved the language. I was her favorite girl student. In fact she was the first person who told me that I sing really good; that I had the sweetest voice in the class. Wow! The moment was so wondrous. That day I felt really good about myself. I miss her. Later she got married and then I also moved to the other school but I still do miss her.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Think India Think!

I picked up the newspaper today as a daily routine. After reading first few pages when I flipped and halted on one page, not one but two news caught my attention. Such news are not new but when they make an appearance, it brings back the wave of disgust, irritation, loathe and pity to a particular section of the society.

Now to be more precise, those couple of news were about Rape; one teenage girl has been gang-raped and one photojournalist has also got raped. I have scribbled few more posts on Rape previously on my blog but as sky has no end, these rape cases too appear alike. Today again, if I dare to strain more on this Rape issue, I feel like demanding the actions on 'Where is the benefit of those protests and arson after the horrible incident of Nirbhaya (On Dec. 16th 2012)?' 'Are they dead, like Nirbhaya herself?' 'Have our laws, policemen, political figures and all the supreme authorities have chucked their conscience out of this world?' These questions may sound like a broken unusable straw in the heap of waste but these questions DO seek attention, regardless where we are and what we do!

Lately I read that Indian Juvenile Court has decided to treat the lead miscreant in Nirbhaya case, the alleged juvenile, as a minor but not as an adult. The court has punished him with measly three years of imprisonment. That means, an animal will be again free after three years to crush and crumble girls under the brutal acts of his mind. I sighed. I neither cursed nor got agitated. I just sighed. What else I could do? When the law has already abandoned the helm of justice then what can we do with holding the edge of those protests, rallies and crowd show-ups? They go in vain. It is not like India doesn't have an international example of a case when two juveniles got treated as adults in the court when they ended up torturing and murdering a toddler. This incident is true. It happened in Britain in 1993. Two juveniles, named Jon Venables and Robert Thompson, were found guilty of extreme tormenting and murdering of a toddler named James Bulger. The severity of crime was so devastating that Britain court decided to treat those juveniles as adults.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Are you a self-alleging-scanner?

A self alleging person would be someone who culminates a natural habit of scanning him  (or her) actions, thoughts, behavioral patterns etc. on a Right or Wrong balance scale and often finds himself drawing more on the Wrong side.

Let me make myself easier to understand via a example here. Suppose you are in a formal conversation with someone and you both are conversing in a polite manner until the other person says something bad and dismisses the chit-chat. You haven't said anything annoying or irritating yet the other person behaved badly to you. Now the thing to ponder about here is, do you blame yourself for the other person's ill attitude despite you said nothing bad? Do you think you should have said your already innocuous matter in a different manner so that the other person wouldn't get annoy with you? If you are nodding your head silently at either or both of the questions above then you naturally fall under the category of Self-alleging-scanner; a person who keeps weighing himself and blames his attitude for anything that goes wrong around him.

It is, as natural and as clear as the water, definitely not a commendable thing to act towards yourself. Thing happens. Things go either right or wrong and sometimes both of them. Things keep flowing but letting yourself trap into the blame-game isn't a good idea. It can take a toll onto your attitude, your lifestyle, your actions i.e. on your entire personality altogether.

Life isn't easy but don't make it tougher with such indictment habit. Let's check out what you can do to break free of this self-alleging-scanner so that you can breathe a fresh whiff of life.

Stop scanning yourself for other's fault

First and the foremost, stop scanning and blaming yourself for whatever wrong has happened around you. If something has really gone wrong because of you then you are liable to blame yourself but not for those things who are not under your feet to crush for. It's simple. If you don't take credit for if something struck right then how come you have attained a habit of blaming yourself for something wrong? You don't have and frankly I don't think that you will ever have a tight grip on the every situation around.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

One more day off

How strong and how often do YOU crave for one more piece of chocolate after finishing a whole pack already? I don't know about you but I surely know myself at this front. And the answer is...Badly! I'd love to have one more piece of my favorite chocolate even after finishing a whole pack.

The same way, sitting on my couch, working cozily on my tomato colored laptop, with a nip in the air and on the top of it all, having my sweet husband beside me is incredulously making me desire for one more off day. Today is Sunday and the first day of September of this year. Our weekend went good. Saturday was packed with some bank stuff and then lunch at one of the malls. We tried Starke's in Garuda mall, Magrath Road and I must admit, it was the complete waste of money. We had burger, fries and Veg. nuggets but taste couldn't woo us even for a second. Anyway, good or bad, both mealtimes happen and it was just one of those later cases.

Today, we all got up late in the morning (As I have already mentioned it earlier, I am not an early bird at all. I love sleeping till late in the mornings). I had already made arrangements for today's breakfast last night itself so the breakfast turned out a real quikie. It was delicious. We all loved and enjoyed it.

Then we chatted, watched TV and lazed around. Didn't want to go anywhere. Then I made lunch. Our son got his hair cut done (Oh! It was so required). We all had lunch afterwards and slept like a dead horse till the evening. In the evening we had some snacks. Thereupon, we went out for some work at 7.30 and returned at 10.45 at night. Whoaa!! It was a much longer stay out than I had expected. We had dinner outside.

Now that the weather is lovely and rainy, I feel strongly for the coming Monday to turn into some impromptu holiday. Make it a bank holiday or dropped-from-the-sky holiday or some puja holiday or or anything. I don't care but I crave for one more day rest. Alas! I wish the wishes could be true the moment we ask for them!! But now let me hit my sac. See ya'll tomorrow.

Good night world. Sleep tight and dream bright.