Friday, August 3, 2012


For someone who is a cleanliness freak it was not surprising that i had questions about how this kind of shiny, glowing with radiance, polished with butter kind of clean happens.
No!  mere saying that the area is dust free will not satisfy my scepticism. There's got to be some more. Some technique, some method for i have seen natural plants like this here and elsewhere looking just so and i'm sure i need to know, learn a lot more.

Okay but clean plants was not what i wanted to share but some others that caught my fancy as i moved around the city. This brilliant green with flashes of peachy pink having an intruder. A deep purple sauntering in perhaps to break the monotony, or otherwise to provide a visual treat as contrasts that one might not use but nature uses oft and on...just like that!!

Then there was this flower cluster providing fragrance and wonder to passers by from what looked like a Plumeria tree. And i thought i have seen all colors and kinds of this particular species. Funny how presumptous we are in believing that we know it all...of that which is the most favored one. i could still be wrong on this but the tree resembled my most loved tree.

i was very curious about this one which had huge pods hanging in bunches. i stood there looking up, right, left, sideways and all ways and was soon joined by a few more who actually stopped to see what i was searching/looking so restlessly for. They wouldn't know that i was trying also to figure out if the clumps were actually fruits or seed pods and was peering in to find some blossoms hiding somewhere amongst the foliage. Perhaps those tourists thought i have spotted something rare, some bird or some creature. They greeted me with a polite hello and on being apprised of what had caught my fancy approved and exclaimed, " Even we've never seen this strange thing before...".

The entire pleasurable walk area had a mild fragrance not only because of Plumeria but also of what i know as Murraya shrubs. These especially had profuse blossoms and as the sign board proclaimed, the entire walk around the park filled the senses. The mild, soothing, relaxing and calming fragrance even during broad daylight with the sun shining bright and the atmosphere feeling a bit sultry. This would be what i would love to call Get Real aromatherapy. No need then to be enticed by these expensive spas which try to capture the essence of this in nature by using aromatic candles in a closed made to look natural claustrophic area. BTW even there you might not have butterflies, dragonflies to provide you with some cheery panorama.
Sure while i had my aromatherapy sessions i saw dragonflies having a gala time too.
It was befitting to name the lake in the park as Dragon Fly Lake.

But what actually made me startle the cab drivers were these avenue trees that i noticed on my way to my son's apartments. These were unique. That particular day i had no phone, no camera and my handbag was IPad less. Moreover it was drizzling in Singapore like it often does oft and on. The entire neat stretch with flourescent green clusters drooping downwards like Tibetian flags from the trees. For quite sometime now i've been pestering my son to send some snapshots not only for memory sakes but also to know more about the beauty. Ever since i've returned i've been typing newer words into the Google search box but all these days my efforts were in vain. Not today though.

Today's my day and now i know the common name too of that beauty whom i had been pursuing for the last few days. Bless Mr Simper blogger from Singapore who helped me with my eureka moment of the day
i just can't wait to share what they call HANDKERCHIEF TREES. Even though what i'm going to share is a  borrowed one from the Internet.

Fantastic!! it looks even more amazing on it's own as an ornamental tree in the front lawn and garden.

Sure enough if and when my shots arrive they should see this page as their ramp in a fashion show which showcases Maniltoa browneoides in the grand finale as The SHOWSTOPPER.

i guess that should be all for today...more when i badly need to share...

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Come Walk with Me

i just feel gr8 for the monsoon finally bringing the heat down in Delhi. A stroll in the morning with my babies around me looking greener and healthier and sprouting perfect new limbs, growing stronger and healthier can be a very relaxing and calming experience. And today i wish for company because although my babies make me feel happy i cannot help but miss my loved one who is no more with me. Today i want to share my happiness and my pining heart for Precious.

Coming out of the main door...thinking also about the WHO who created you before i adopted you my dearest ones...i first look towards your appearance.

Admiring you and thanking you, blessing you, wishing you well, whispering silently to survive against all odds i walk along spaces that could not restrict you from spreading joy to one and all.

My babies who have made me famous...people come and show lots of appreciation for their respects to the mother who adopted them and is taking excellent care and their numbers are now gradually growing... of strangers who want to be friends.
i am now known through you and because of you. That sometimes makes me feel wanted and other times infuses some pride.
But will they ever be able to feel that i deeply miss one among or rather few among you who left me this summer? Can they sense the guilt...the anger...the frustration...the loneliness/emptiness/the sorrow that one feels even when others are around ??? But Darlings the moment i see you i get respite and feel optimistic once again. Trying all that i can...feeding you, grooming you, watching you grow from strength to strength i quickly forget all my pain, anger, frustrations...

Sometimes you play truant and cause me worry when you don't look your own cheery self.

But a lot many times you only delight me and pleasantly surprise me when you introduce me to your new friends.

The Bulbuls and sparrows friends of yours are restless and fly away or rather shy away after a quick greeting but this Mr Gold -triangle- in- the- wings was very patient and kind. We sure did exchange a few notes. Thank you dears for sharing your fun times with me. But will you please invite that butterfly again who got startled as soon as i approached to say hello. Will you tell the butterfly not to be afraid and linger a bit longer? i would love to know it's name.

Come walk with me...from that passage to the lift...and lets remember Precious and company fondly...
The mere sight of whom would bring words into the mouth of even the most quiet one, banish all boredom, start conversations and even startle the moving feet to glued one was stunned by it's elegance and regalia. Some strangers would just come all the way to the top floor just to take pictures.
i wish well for you my babies but can't help missing my Precious. 
Is Precious precious because Precious is no more with us now? i guess not.
Succumbing to the heat wave and languishing slowly as i tried my best to revive it. Was there something i needed to know...something that i missed...of some fatal infection draining the life out of my Precious... ignorance about it's weaning, it's delicate body which needed special care... the oppressive, suffocating heat wave... what was it...???
Feeling anxious about you always especially when i am away not trusting the help who might ignore you completely or upon being reprimanded over the phone overfeed you and make you fatally sick. Do you know dears that it's in a mom's intrinsic nature to worry about the well being of her kids? 
Are you missing Precious too and all your other buddies who were too delicate to survive the odds?
i mean all your colorful friends...
Perhaps they suffered doubly... with heat burns and latent grief for Precious. 
Do not grieve my darlings...
 Precious and company will always be in our hearts.
i know i know...all of you love talking about Precious and the others as they say-"Absence makes the heart grow fonder".
Let's talk as i walk for not only do i prize your gentle, innocent, beautiful  presence around me but YOU my lovely ones remind me again and again of that which often slips out of the conscious... 
"When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight."
                                                                 --- Kahlil Gibran
N.B: Keep walking with me as we shall in my next post reveal more of Precious...

Thank you Varun

Finally it's raining since morning in the hot and sultry Dilli of mine. And it being a Tuesday all i can think about is food. More so as i have willingly and happily subscribed to what is called Mangalwaari ( Tuesday fast). i tried to feel religious about the whole fast thing but as one can deduce from the introduction i am more than happy and satisfied to consider my Mangalwaari as the day of detoxifying the accumulated junk that could've accumulated over the week. It being my day off from the kitchen too as there's got to be no cooking till evening. Sure i look forward eagerly to an evening of simple dal roti and methi aloo.

Obviously! i thought it better to share some food news instead of anything else.

Quite recently i had been to Singapore and acted like a stubborn kid who wanted to eat her fish and chips only. i pestered my son to take me to that joint in the University campus where i had had my last yummy fish and chips, something called Megabytes in the Science Forum area of the National University of Singapore. But the best buddy of my son suggested a place quite near to my hotel explaining briefly why the place was a delight not only for fish and chips maniacs but also THE place for seafood lovers. i took his advice seriously and boy! am i glad !

This place is called Fish & Co.
i don't know how many branches they have but since i was put up in Orchard Road this particular one was in the shopping mall called Paragon very close to my hotel. This information about a swell joint so near to my lodging was also imparted by the same good soul. Jauntily and all a go we set out for this very convenient walk from my hotel to this joint. Hardly took 5 minutes to reach our destination.

The neon proclaims and the cooks in the kitchen remain honest and true to the proclamation.What i ordered was a seafood platter and it sure was served to me straight from the fire in a saucepan. Food served hot and fresh in a typical Mediterranean style.

The one i had selected from a tempting menu of quite an array was this Seafood Platter for 1. My picture does not show clearly the bountiful and scrumptiously delicious spread just enough to satisfy the craving palate and delight the rest of the gastronomical senses. That of an amazing sight and the aroma that makes one drool. Maybe the tiger prawns and calamari are visible here but let me share the entire rich and very satisfying meal that i ever had. My meal consisted of tiger prawns, calamari, dori fillet served on a bed of paella rice and chips. Not that i want to spoil anybody's appetite but just because i remember that cute Blue Tang/ Regal Tang- Dory in Finding Nemo...i guess Dory is another cute Piscean species in the already created food chain.

Here is another borrowed pic from the internet that shows all of the delightfully enjoyed by me platter. The Dori fillet is neatly tucked in the side next to the chips on one side bordered by a disciplined line-up against the wall tiger prawns on the other side. The bed of Paella brilliantly colored peeping between calamari rings and the tiger prawns. As the good soul had explained i loved the creamy layering/ stuffing of the prawns and the dori fillet with just the correct hint of aromatic herbs used.

 Although i was less adventurous in choosing my meal i have no doubt that the rest of the array-11 platters to be precise would be a gourmet's delight too. (i had counted the variety in the platter menu as well as those of just fish and chips which was about 8 kinds served that day- the 8 best from around the world).

Actually i loved everything about the place. The subdued yet distinct nautical theme which exuded a warm and cheery ambiance, the casual, inviting yet relaxed wall less dining area...the courteous Ferdie who not only understood just what would please me but was surprisingly very patient to all my dilly dallying while choosing my platter and oh yes his adorable and  unforgettable naughty smile...the  wooden fish design coasters...the anatomy of Salmon which was hand drawn on the black board with handy tips about the best way to prepare it and also to preserve the freshness, and last but not the least the freshness of the place itself in spite of it being a seafood joint. There was not a hint of that overpowering seafood odor that sometimes may dull and drive the hungry appetite away.

i had one meal a day everyday for the next consecutive couple of the remaining days and regretted not knowing of the place beforehand. For i was there for about a week and this one meal a day at Fish&Co would've introduced me to a lot many of that which i have never name a few like oysters, mussels, Atlantic cod, pollock, whole sea bass, swordfish, stingray... .
Although in those 2 days i had exhausted my cravings for fish and chips i was eager to introduce my exploratory palate to a lot more. Especially one that i had noticed on my neighbor diner's table. When i asked what that colorful, attractive looking dish was, Ferdie had to spell out rather show the dish in the menu. It was called Seafood Bouillabaise introduced recently into their menu. i don't even remember now how to pronounce it correctly. All i remember is that it was a special dish that is not served with any side dish unlike many others as it is fulfillingly delightful by itself. Maybe next time i will remember not to dilly dally and day one should see me ordering this Seafood Bouillabaise.

Before i forget although i could not try Teryaki sauce or the French styled tomato coulis i relished their sauces as well which were way above the ones i had tasted before. Be it the most commonly used for most fish fingerlings tarter sauce or something unique of Fish&Co itself the very famous garlic lemon butter sauce.

Yeah i have promises to keep for all those called tomato coulis, miso, teryaki for the next time along with many other main dishes... and i cannot quit without fondly thinking and missing that buddy of my son in whom i see all traits of a banking- on- for- all -great- informations- buddy of mine.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Initially i was uncaring but just recently when i was gheraoed ( sort of mobbed) by strangers in a upmarket beauty salon including the chief hair stylist i thought that it was time that i shared the secret to the world.

 i had accompanied a friend of mine who had an appointment there and the moment i sat with a glamour magazine waiting for the coffee to arrive i was approached by not one but 3 pretty done up young ladies who wanted to know which brand of hair color i use and what the name of the color is.
i was hesitant and doubtful and felt like lying at first and i actually did when i just fumbled-'' Errrr! actually it is but natural."
How could i go on to explain the whole story. But while i had uttered my lie i realized that the heavily booked for the week hairstylist with whom my friend had fixed an appointment a month earlier had meandered in with some more and all her gadgets hanging around and the goddess of all hair thing proclaimed looking at me straight in the eye-" Oh! this is that new henna Javed thing but let me tell you this -you should try what we have here...the latest with NO AMMONIA... ." i felt like laughing but tried to control. She sounded so fake trying to imitate Penelope Cruz and i also wondered if imitation is another sort of marketing strategy and if that's what helps her sell then it was wierdly funny.

i wish i could reproduce that look...the presumptuous, bossy, i- know- it- all look through my narration but am incapable of reproducing the next look either which was even better when i lied again-" No trust me Ms Hair Expert!, sry i don't know your name but my hair is natural although i do treat it in my own special way and sure i do use henna as the main ingredient."
i don't know if it was my way of speaking or the curiosity to know that Ms Hair Expert sobered down and expressed a sincere desire that i share with her and the rest my recipe for that color.

Of course i had to narrate it all but it was in pure honesty and the complete truth. But the admiration i got later sure warmed me because i had underestimated the power of household handy tips with the added bonus of the newly forged friendship right there and then itself.
My friend who was a bit irritated for having been stood up looked towards me and winked that wink wink which gave me the added courage and pleasure of sticking to my lie because she knew my secret.
She knew that my white lie had an iota of truth in it after all.
Oh i shall be more than happy to discuss the truth. But first my true recipe and the procedure.

Recipe for Hair Color :
1.Fresh Henna leaves-and if you can't get fresh leaves then the dry henna powder can be used.
2. A handful of Red Hibiscus flowers-but if you can't get the flowers then even the leaves of the hibiscus shrub are good enough.
3. Beetroot juice (Depending on the length of your tresses-big, medium sized or small- 1 beetroot to be grated and the juice squeezed out. Don't throw away the leftover-use it for cooking anything-soups, raitha, or mix it for vegetable cutlets)
4. If you are using dry henna powder then some tea decoction for the paste.
5. 1 tbsp of coffee powder preferably fresh ground coffee bean and if that is not available then instant Bru or Nescafe coffee powder should suffice.

Henna Leaves


Coffee beans
Procedure: The entire ingredients are mixed in a blender which makes a sticky paste. Finally apply it in your hair and leave it for minimum half an hour and wash off with just plain water. Do not shampoo your hair the day you apply this henna paste. At night give your hair a nice warm oil massage and shampoo your hair the following day. In order to get the best results you will have to repeat the procedure every week once. In about a months time your hair will not only look beautiful but also feel rich with all it's body and bounce.

Advice: If you are susceptible to cold, sinus, asthma then this may not be suitable for you.

Finally the iota of truth in my lie is that in order to get the exact hue that my mane has you need to have dull, dry, lifeless, light colored, malnutrition-ed original hair. Something that looks like straw,( hay colored).
Maybe one might have a richer color like this and may lack the body and bounce. Even then i feel that my henna paste may add to its richness so far as color, body and bounce is concerned.

 Trust me on this. Hair that has no body nor bounce. Hair that stands in it's place refusing to settle down unless the hand is used to press it down.
The hue that my hair has and the body and bounce that it supports now is all because of this magical paste which is a part of my weekly routine once every week unless i am traveling.
i do feel good about the feel and the compliments my hair gets me but the added bonus is how a bonhomie, a kind of sisterhood is forged all because of something that i was not happy about and something that i decided to change for the better.

Bereft now of my bungalow and my henna and hibiscus shrubs i have still been following my regime religiously substituting the ingredients with dry henna powder and adding some conditioning agent like egg white as just dry henna powder dries the hair still further. You can add the yolk which is best if you can tolerate the smell. No i did not try any of the ready made expensive mixes-Shahnaz , Blossom Kocchar's or even Javed Habib's which is lesser priced... but an year back i saw the commercial of one Godrej Nupur Henna powder. The mix claims of my ingredients and more. i make a paste of it with tea decoction and beetroot juice. i am very satisfied and it has worked just fine for me. As you can see.

That's it for the time being. Presumably will be back soon with more...Although cannot quit without an afterthought. If i can change and feel happy about my hair then i think i have the potential to change more...

Image Courtesy: images of Hibiscus, Henna Leaves, Beetroot, Coffee Beans and of the crowning glory beautiful wondering lady and also the beautiful lady upset with her hair lady from the Internet.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

It's my hair !

i actually don't get it. i mean i am one year through and yet what i get from people is just warnings of all kinds about this city and especially the people that make this city. The most frequent being." Be cautious X Y Z is a pucca Dalhite..." At first it didn't strike what it meant and later during the day it brainstormed suddenly that Dalhite stood for Delhiite.(Pucca-colloquial meaning strictly/purely)
Puzzled and clueless and am wondering if stereotyping pertains only to people or can it be extended to cities too or is it the cities inhabited by a certain genre that gets stereotyped???

i must admit that sometimes the warnings do get to you. Enough to make you prejudiced and biased but once you become quiet with nothing but your thoughts talking to you then you question and later reject the stereotyping because then you are just influenced by your own analysis in which the quiet words are honest too.
i tried to keep myself to myself and not be overtly social. And i didn't even have to try hard because just like so many i was just too busy to find time for socializing. Also i had my self inflicted projects...the looking forward to projects that kept me away from the people in the housing society which i inhabit today.

But ' The People' have made their foray into my homemaker-with new personal project every alternate day -busy life.
i don't feel irritated but yes i do confess that i'm skeptical about the newness of this association.

Why the skepticism???
For one thing i feel that today to be recognized in this Whose What World you got to be Something. Nobody is interested in you if you are a NOBODY.
i actually prided in being a nobody because it made me so unique. No credentials to flaunt, no extra talent and heavens! no moolah either to exhibit in various forms ie through blah.
And i won't say that i was happy, extremely happy at being my own Nobody self because at times i did crave for COMPANY.

Now the desire looks apparently and somewhat fulfilled because i have been granted that title finally.

A Somebody .
i get greetings and acknowledgement with the most warm smiles and of late some are even vying with each other to have me visit their rich cloisters.
Cloisters!! well that's another story and i'd rather stick about this that i am enjoying right now.
So now i'm a Somebody who knows much and hence in demand.

My skepticism is more about myself than any other because deeply inside i know that soon enough all shall be divulged and i shall retire to my NOBODY cloister of my own.

Apart from the other somebody attributes, of late i am being approached for the color and texture of my hair.
 In this post i shall let myself gloat over the fact that ' The People' have an eye for uniqueness even when you are the nobody.
So all these new friends who in my society have finally decided to grace my living room with their presence were not whimsical after all. Looking for an excuse to satisfy their curiosity and all. i do recognize that when they asked me about the hair color they actually meant it.

Ooh la it's my hair!!
Lemmme! lemmme first look at my hair now...that which has also made me famous.

To me i don't see any reason for not gloating on account of all that impression because only i know how my hair looked originally had i not treated it naturally. And sure i shall share this secret but later. Right now i want to emphasize also that in my attempt to narrate i am not trying to ridicule anything or anyone.

 i am just puzzled with this concept called Delhiite. Now i am in this city and i don't know how long i shall remain here but is it a matter of time when i shall be a Delhiite too???
Well for all the good reasons i would love to be a  Delhiite because i am beginning to admire the place for all that it's giving me. Sure a comfortable life with good facilities and lovely people too.

As for the rest i think some attributes are as universal as our feelings. And just like feelings each place has it's own uniqueness, it's own pace and it's own rhythm. i have for the last 21 years savored the Bharatnatyam  and i am eager to get into the Bhangra beat as well.  i can definitely choose my own pace but i wish people stop warning me all the time. My friends of yore, my husband and what is shocking as well as puzzling is from the inhabitants of this place themselves who have been here before partition and also from those after partition. Why are these people always warning me???

Talk about being curious-isn't it universal ?
Talk about being opportunistic- is it just endemic to a particular place??
Talk about being Vain- show me any who isn't.The degree may vary but aren't we helpless against Vanity???
Talk about flaunting- i got one valuable lesson even when it was from facebook- everybody is alive and kicking when it comes to flaunting even those who reside in the remote corners of the world and could just be as common as crow- as if the mantra for the day is PPPY. Project Protray Popularise Yourself. 
Finally as for the ostentation part  i think once anyone got the moolah to afford everyone tries to emulate what the rich and famous wear or how they live. Not everyone is Warren Buffet. Okay the degrees may vary but then i question myself that if i had the amount of dough to afford would i be satisfied with a small bare essential cottage or will i go for a villa with a pool and others the answer that i get confirms my belief in grapes are sour story.
As for Sucrew for screw, Sapring for spring an Parak for park i find it rather just too cute and comfortable and am often using it myself for the ease it gives my tongue and lips. i mean the words in English require more finesse in speaking and most eligibility than you can ever imagine because if you ask for wautur very few waiters will bring water for you and might say," Sorry maam we don't have that dish here".  The last time i said that the paar has gone i was begged pardon thrice until i had said paavur. (power)
Also when i had asked for the Pears soap i was denied at not one but three grocery stores when finally the gentleman (God Bless him for he understood) at the counter asked me-" Kya apko glycerine wali pierce sabun chahiye??" (Do you want the Glycerined Pierce soap???)
And God should bless me now that i have understood it twisting words in English can be.

As for my hair color and texture i was approached by some friends in fact many even in Chennai. How can i forget the big plastic disposable boxes that i used to carry to school to distribute willingly and kindly to all my colleagues who had pleaded for my hair recipe. That's another story which shall be divulged in my next post that none could ever get that texture and color because trust me some things are all but natural. Although my recipe in those disposable boxes were as original as me and i used it and still do regularly once a week. Even today for this week as i sit to click click another exhaustive post.
Sure i am the cat right now and let me be in this good feeling for sometime that it's my hair for the time being. And i hope it's something else not for recognition or fame but for the sake of companionship. Life can get very lonely at times and if some good soul even when she is a pucca Delhiite approaches me and wants to be friends with me then what's the harm!.

Wishing that the warnings should cease for me to savor the new mood in life and to be ready enough to face the consequences if and when it should happen it's time for me to call it the quits. Not that i'm expecting consequences but i've had enough experiences bitter and sweet about forging relationships but that should not stop me in any way should it?  i will like my hair continue to grow.

In any case i shall be back soon with more of my hair saga...the added bonus being the recipe for my hair which gets it's color naturally!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Mixed Feelings

i read or heard somewhere, perhaps in one of the Rumi songs that God turns you from one feeling to another and teaches by means of opposites, so that you can have two wings to fly. The song also talked about gratitude.
And i am searching for an apt explanation to some opposites i am faced with.
Is it possible to feel gratitude and yet feel burdened at the same time?
To feel happiness in what you have received and not enjoy the moment to the full extent or sufficiently enough?

i was not expecting her at all that morning because i was aware of her holiday with her two sons. First in Amsterdam and then in Dubai. She was to touch base only in July.
When she rang the bell with a package in her hands i was just too preoccupied with my husband's breakfast. She was embarrassed by her unwitting intrusion and took out her tongue, a gesture which looked apologetic , '' Sry to have disturbed you when u r busy..."
i couldn't contain my surprise and asked her, ''Weren't you supposed to leave yesterday?
Hastily depositing what she had brought in the package for me and explaining the reason which was a rather anxious one, she left.

The package that she gifted felt like i was holding a just born infant. Even more because i could see what it contained. And for some time it lay daintily where i had put it till i was free enough to read, to assimilate how i was supposed to be with my suddenly dropping out of nowhere fragile and oh! such a wonderful bundle of joy.

This bundle had arrived  Fresh From - Holland i read. AVIFLORA...must be the florist i mused. Saw the graphics of all that Holland is famous for.
 i  have always identified Holland through some of these. Windmills and flowers, Cheese and dairy products, Canals and pointy roofs and definitely the CLOGS.
Was not aware of the others like the marine life as the graphics on the package depicted. Also was clueless about the horse drawn carriage.  
Thus i progressed precociously and patiently in the unwrapping as not to injure anything not even the wrappings...for the wraps were not one but three. Had to be...

But before reaching my bundle of joy i had to go through the feeding instructions. i had never handled such before and there was no one around me to guide me but these that came along with my bundle. 

It provided me with step by step instructions and diagrams about the weaning.

Finally with bated breadth i laid my eyes on the face.

Slowly and carefully i let my sight take in more...

Then the whole body with it's luscious, luxuriant limbs healthy and perfectly formed.   

My bundle of joy...oh God ! so pretty and so fresh like they're just born.  

 i had to hurry up for they would be lacking nourishment.

None of the containers i owned looked worthy or even snug enough but i had to make do with the best of what i had.
Also the feed had to be prepared first.
So after preparing the formula of the feed my happiness was sort of crammed in the one that i had. Deriving nourishment and getting refreshed  i hoped it could tolerate the discomfiture till i could  find a way to ease the discomfort.
It was a strange feeling. As if seeing it so close was not enough. Having it in my living room was not enough. i was overwhelmed. First with gratitude and all this beauty but later with some heaviness.

Soon i tried to ease the cramming and in order to ease the discomfort of my bundle of joy decided to let it crawl the entire habitable area of mine.

Like i said the strange feeling would not go and as the evening wore on i just kept hovering around moving apparently aimless but keeping a watch. i was not at peace.

Looking, feeling, wondering if my thank you was enough for the gift i had just received i was bewildered and perplexed with the slight nudge in the elbow of  my thoughts which was making my joyous castle of cards just tumble and fall helter skelter.
i was not flying but my feelings were. Rather they are still flying and perching on strange spots.

 Some wonderful moments with a dear friend of mine did come to the rescue and during the day today i was saved from the conflicting flood of emotions but as i am narrating now the opposites have returned with a vengeance. 
The pleasure of receiving but inside some pain too. 
Outwardly i have shared this joy with friends but the sorrow, the despair, the restlessness is all mine.

i feel like a bird in a cage who has doubts on her ability to fly. 
i have my wings but my muscles are weak and in order to fly i need to train my wings and stretch them slowly.

For the time-being it gives me lot of comfort as i listen to more of Rumi...

Monday, April 30, 2012

Mirror Miiror On The Wall...

Of late she has turned reticent this best buddy sister of mine. Gone are her anecdotes which overflowed with humor in real life. Devoid of her joie de vivre and bereft of her best mimicry i am often tearing my hair in despair in trying to fathom if it was something i have said or done to trigger this loneliness and sadness that seems to emanate from both ends now. My loneliness getting deeper we both seem to be wallowing in a common disposition which sees us in a quiet and serene surrounding far far away from humanity.

i am at the moment on a pepping myself spree. Instilling hope in me that maybe it's yet another phase which like other phases should pass and so i am holding on to her last one. Her last anecdote i mean. And although i laughed at what she said i did not hear even a dry ha from her. She just narrated what she was seeing and as if my laughter would elicit some from her i laughed the cheating laugh like those we often hear in the background of the many sorry comedy sit coms.

i am holding on to her last one for other reasons too. The most important being the thought that how easy it is to laugh at others. Obviously this only happened after i had had my fill of laughing at her neighbor's expense. i looked around me and saw that my attempt to do certain things of my own looked silly and funny too. Not that i am prone to doing silly things but this endeavor is a testimony of the bubbling creative Indian in me who just like many of her kind is trying a cost effective way to solve issues.
We also have a very Indian word to it which is called JUGAAD.

While many jugaad concepts get applauded as innovations or have the potentials of pioneering well designed and neatly executed easy to use equipments some elicit humor and laughter and can also provide food for light hearted tea-time conversations. One can go on discussing the feasibility and purpose and also analyze the IQ of the innovator.

i start my week by trying to put myself at ease. i want to laugh at myself first.
Although i was pretty serious at what i was doing i realize now as  i look at it that my own jugaad looks not only crude but quite funny.
And all my attempts of reinforcements to make it look less precarious makes the entire look not only rudimentary but even funnier.

But the one that can be awarded the first prize among the worst is...The Cage
There are no avian or rodents in this cage but...
Caged , packed  and partially fenced too...

Now as the corner of my lips twitch at all my jugaad i feel some ease in presenting that which my taciturn nowadays sis had provided me with. At this juncture it is inconsequential to discuss the why's of all this frugal engineering. What i want to test is whether it is easier to laugh at others. Deeply influenced by what i have just read

Presenting...through pictures... the story of The Caged Amrapali...

i will be dishonest if i say i have not laughed at this. And i am not surprised either that i did because it is so easy to laugh at what others do. Ignoring the fact that improvisation was the key issue it was so easy to fall prey to appearance. The essence however being the same in this and mine which is to protect. So is it the appearance versus essence that seems to be the culprit here or is it what has been my central thought?

i am unable to point out any single incident that has driven me to ponder about this at the start of the week but am certain about my own feelings on being ridiculed. i am affected most when anyone ridicules me on my efforts. i feel bitter and seek isolation. But i am blessed with a lot of resilience too.

This resilience also comes to me from borrowed sources. The words of wisdom from seers and saints, poets and writers, friends and relatives and now with the help of technology from various other known and lesser known in the world wide web. These words that heal the wounded self esteem, remind the self of the do unto others as you would have others do unto you and last but not the least prevent the boils from turning into tumors. Call these boils as disgust, frustration, irritation, bitterness... 

Another day with a new beginning i should be raring to go undeterred with what anyone has to say about my looking forward to projects.
And as i go about my endeavors to make my babies (plants) April-May storm resistant i will remember the efforts of my sister's neighbor with more kindness.
Sure i'm humming " Tell me mirror mirror on the wall..."


Jugaad: "... grassroots innovation to overcome any constraint".
Amrapali: Sharing the nomenclature with the royal courtesan of ancient India this variety of mango is as charming. The tree looks graceful and the fruit when ripe has an amazing aroma, is rich in it's color and tastes heavenly.

                                 Amrapali Mango

Amrapali Mango
This hybrid is from a cross of Dashehari and Neelum. It is dwarf, regular bearing and late maturing variety. The variety is suitable for high density planting as about 1600 plants may be planted in a hectare. It yields on an average of 16 tonnes/ hectare.
Dashehari and Neelum are names of popular varieties of mango both having their own unique tastes.