Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Bin Guru Gyan Kahaan Se Paaoon

Post updated this day today ie Feb 27, 2015...thanks to the prompt reply to my query...
i sincerely need to thank the kind beings who helped calm my restless for an id soul...
First and foremost my gratitude to Mr Issac Kehimkar whom i consider to be my Guru now and who advised me to send my query to a group on facebook namely
Here a gentleman called Mr Arun Kumar N helped me with the name of the species. So my sincere thanks to Mr Arun Kumar N for had it not been for him i would never have known the name of my tiny but having some hidden light of their own beauties. Today i know what it is. Vicia augustifolia...commonly known as Vetch or Spring Vetch and the nitrogen fixing plant belongs to the pea family.
However the essence of my blog remains unchanged i would still love for my blog to reverberate with feelings...Bin Guru Gyan Kahaan Sey Paaoon... ( How do i gain knowledge without a Guru)

Haree Aum, Haree Aum, Haree Aum, Haree Aum

Mann tarapatt Haree darshan ko aaj 

I crave to see Lord Vishnu today

Moray Tum been bigare sagare kaaj 

Without Your blessing everything is going wrong.
Nothing goes right when You are not with me

Binatee karat hoon, rakhiyo laaj 

i plead with You hear my prayer

Tumare dwaar kaa main hoo jogee 

I am a humble seeker of your door

Humaree oar najar kab hogee 

When will You honor me with Your blessings

Suno moray byaakool man kaa baaj 

Hear my ardent prayers

Bin guru gyaan kahaan se paaoon 

How can I gain knowledge without a Guru

Dijo dhaan Haree gun gaaoon 

If You bless me Lord Vishnu, I will sing Your praises

Sab gunee jan pe Tumaraa raaj 

You are the King of all educators as You grant Your blessings to every seeker

Muralee Manohar aas naa todo 

The one with the flute, do not let down my hopes

Dukh bhanjan moraa saath naa chhodo 

The reliever of pains be by my side

Mohay darshan bheekshaa dey do aaj 
Grant me your appearance today, i am begging for just one look at You 

Mann tarapatt Haree darshan ko aaj 
I  crave to see Lord Vishnu today

The song is a famous one an olden goldie from the fim Biju Bawra and composed by the great Naushad...but then when it used to play on the radio a few years back on the radio when we were kids we did not much fancy it. We would start tuning to other stations making fun of the semi classical tune. Complaining that it was such a sleepy boring song. Not peppy at all. But then it was the ABBA and BONEY M days.

Today the same provides solace and it's the cry emanating from the core only thing i cannot even sing it even as bathroom singer cause it's a difficult to sing to tune bhajan. So i just love to chant it as a prayer. Keeps me close to Ma my mother who was an intense Vishnu devotee. Makes me calm and for sometime think about the ONE who was supposed to play some great flute too. Lord Krishna.

Why i turned towards this one today is because of the particular line... Bin Guru Gyaan Kahaan Sey Paaoon.

i have known and read of many who were self taught...discoverers, explorers, scientists, musicians, you name it various fields and why Baiju himself was one. Baiju also earned a title as 'Bawra'. Bawra meaning one whose mind who appears crazy to the world. Baiju Bawra who beat the great music maestro Tansen in the musical duet on whom the movie was made from which this song which is my prayer is taken .  

Like i said in my blog earlier i am a seeker and need answers rather one too many. As for myself can't claim that i am self taught not really because starting from Nature which is also my Guru i have a lot many resources. Unabashedly i ask these days from strangers too. Answers to my queries which keep erupting. Be it relating to music and even some new jargon people seem to be using these days and being away from the mainstream circle i am not able to figure out the meaning of some when it is casually dropped on me in any conversation.
Yeah i am cool about being very originally desi ( traditional as opposed to being utterly modern)...and don't really mind if the so called hep janta (public) calls me 'behanjee' (rustic simpleton) for that.

Of late technology is where i turn to for assistance but the Internet leaves me in the lurch and eats too much of my free and quality time which otherwise i would love to spend feeling free. My mind and fingers occupied with the keyboard the entire day is not my kind of done thing. It chokes my spirits. Another disadvantage being that restrained in the confines to where i am seated i lose track of the main search and land up being caught in sights that the world wide web shows me of others not what i search but closer to what i had been searching. Thus i land up getting lost in some bhool bholaiyaa (labyrinth) if i haven't typed the correct key words or the correct name.
Like i said it chokes my bubbling with life spirit if i get lost and spent on my time and energy that way.

As i had mentioned in my earlier blogs my Guru Camera shows and the search begins. Sometimes it takes days. Sometimes months and my blogs with pictures wait in tow as drafts till i am able to identify. But many a times i wish i had a physical, living Guru to tell me stuff. Someone who i can be safe with who would just answer my queries and perhaps impart me with something more that would pique my curiosity further and just and let me be. Is it possible in today's world to have a physical Guru of the sort i wonder.

Now i came upon this beauty the other day and i am clueless about this beautiful creation of the Almighty. At the outset it appeared as grass...a thick network which perhaps was covering the large pot which contained my Sage bush. Sage bush also known as Barometer bush because it flowers beautiful small lilac trumpets depending on the humidity in the atmosphere. Now the bed of this large pot was covered with thick foliage and some of this tiny beauty...and i would've uprooted the entire thinking it to be grass...a trespasser sharing, no gobbling the resources at that moment i thought, of the limited earth in the pot...had not the glowing dazzling brilliance of the pretty beautiful things stopped me.

At the outset it looked like some kind of a tiny pea family flower but the foliage looked nowhere near and when i peered it looked like a twining creeper just like pea.

One specialty which although i notice again this time like all in nature. The tiny glowing with a light of their own inner beauty shone brilliant no matter how tiny they were from the dense green foliage like glow butterflies instead of glow worms that we have seen and i wonder if in reality we do have butterflies that glow as well as these flowers that reminded me so much of butterflies. Tiny swift butterflies...i wondered if such butterflies existed somewhere in the world...tiny but one that glowed...

Another feature that i just noticed and reminded myself to watch. This aspect in others now to see if the young ones of other flowers show such similar traits. The buds looks purple or blue but the full bloom tiny flowers this glowing pink. 

Well not only the flowers but also the pea pod like fruit of the plant makes me believe that the dainty butterflies belong to legume family Fabaceae ie pea family and the closest technology took me to was a plant called Lathyrus. Some also call Lathyrus as Vetchlings but i cannot be so sure. 

Thus my need...of a Guru...a real one who could tell me...if this glowing butterfly that has formed a dense network in my concrete pot...should i just let it be or should i mercilessly yank it off.

Because certain things in nature are nitogen fixing too. And i don't want to destroy. A thing of beauty which is joy forever. 
Somehow till i find answers i am trying to convince myself silly, stuff like, " let it be... the lush green foliage will help prevent soil erosion...keep the top soil intact ..."

Also i like all that green with the tiny glowing pretty beauties against the wall the paint of which is peeling and against the grey cement background the entire network of this looks so appealing and beautiful. Some intuition tells me this admirable beauty is valuable to my Sage bush...

 This time i could not make it to the Delhi Book Fair. For if i would have gone i would go there for one book specifically. But Flipcart Zindabaad i have the book on me now and i was hopeful of finding the identity of my butterfly flowers in it. The identity of my beauty isn't here but a whole lot of others is and the book is a delight to me.  
Thus i know now this gentleman is the only Guru who can help me.

In the acknowledgement section of the book the author Mr Issac Kehimkar talks about a Guru whom he never met but who "... has been like Dronacharya, from whom I have learnt identification of plants in the field, and like Eklavya, I could never be his student officially."

i know i have the name of THE GURU but i want Mr Issac Kehimkar to be my Guru...and it could be because of this book of could be because of his words that he has used in his could be just his love of nature i identify with. i don't know what...but at the moment i am chanting Man tarpatt Haree Darshan Ko aaj...Bin Guru Gyan Kahaan sey Paaoon...
And yes i am still clueless but happy and strangely not restless but calm...yeah it's the works...

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Yes Kabir Again Today But Wanting Closure Nonetheless

Kabira aap Thagaaiye, aur na Thagiye koy.
Aaap Thaga sukh hot hai, aur Thage dukh hoy.
Kabir says it is okay if you are deceived by someone (forgive and forget and it will not make any knots inside you. You shall feel hurt but not bound). But be careful not to cheat anyone. If you are cheated, you will be still happy because there is freedom from that bondage which makes one feel tied down with guilt, but by deceiving others you are bound and unhappy. In your heart you will always have regrets and will always bear the heavy weight of your own guilt. 

Flummoxed...yeah for a change i wanted to use a new word.
For my condition. That i find myself trapped into. A predicament i can't seem to get out of. Not that i am scared of any disaster or anything at the moment but being human i have my worries nevertheless naturally but more than worries it's the CLOSURE that i need the most.

It's not the first time experience though. i have oft been used and then slapped with accusations for my openness and honesty and then left in the lurch. Family keeps doing it to me...earlier when i was an extrovert...friends found me an easy target to practice their essential skills of survival on me and perhaps on others whom i don't know but yes i was special chosen one. And now when i think in retrospect i am beginning to doubt my own essential skills about judging intentions. But i guess just like me there might be others too for i might not be the only one.
There is no other way to know intentions but to experience it...go through the entire length and breadth of it and then just like me land up with a situation where you cannot seem to see any answers coming as to what really works.

Yes i agree i do lack in those skills that one needs which is to be able to ascertain. If when i am sought for then whether that seeking is for genuine love or for some ulterior motive. Which once accomplished i shall be left in the corner to languish wondering," What did i do wrong?"
i have often asked my own people because i get riled up over this and very emotional and when i get emotional my voice which already is not a soft one rises to a still higher pitch. Nah i am not fighting or anything but it's one animated expression of mine to express how i am feeling.
i mean i cannot whisper softly and speak out when i am hurt or frustrated or feeling hopeless.
Nowadays i just go silent and leave the place but then too i am accosted and asked to explain...

My younger sister keeps telling me that in offering my services to people i go 'OVERBOARD' and later 'COMPLAIN'.
Some in the family especially those in the in laws side say that i do stuff to ' Get A GOOD NAME' or to ' CREATE AN IMPRESSION'.
My son says i am a ' POOR PEOPLE MANAGER'...

And this is the latest just yesterday when in order to make myself happy i showed my latest project to my husband last evening when he returned from office. My project which naturally one can assume would be one related to gardening and plants, this is what he said, " Why are you going on EXTENDING it all the more Shivani..." i didn't hear the rest because i scooted the place more in anger than feeling hurt because plants are my love and i care, nurture and love them. He never does anything but just enjoys the fruits of my labor yet had nothing positive to say about my hard days's labor done all alone. That too so economically. And he is the one who keeps sermonizing about having a POSITIVE ATTITUDE all the time.

Thing is i do and mainly do whatever i do because it is in my intrinsic nature to keep doing stuff. Be it service to one and all, gardening,cooking keeping home and surroundings clean. And i think i have mentioned this in one of my blogs earlier that it keeps me happy and fulfilled.
Nowadays my babies my plants are my happy projects for whenever i am upset with family i turn towards them. Get my grooves back and i am happy again. If not plants then my embroidery...if not embroidery then perhaps blogging or even doing a makeover of something that has gone old...polishing or painting stuff something like that. Sometimes trying out a new dish in cooking too. But here too i have to make something original. So my concoctions turn out better.  Thing is i have to do something. Create something of my own. However it turns out to be. Maybe not a masterpiece but it keeps me satisfied and very much looking forward to a new day every day. That's how it works for me. If any good is happening to anyone else is just a trickle down for i don't actually do it with that motive prima facie.

i like doing for people services as i would have done for myself but if or when they start taking undue advantage i also point it out not behind their backs but right on to their face one to one. Not rudely or anything. It can be as simple as, '' Do not put the wet towel on the bed" to " My God the windows are open and you have the air conditioning on, what a waste of energy and electricity" to something like, " Please make her understand her hostel is far off from my residence and if she wants something from me at the drop of the hat i cannot do that..."
Family members who drop by mostly take me for granted and stand me up. i cook a dinner or lunch while they are out with sometimes my driver and car and sometimes otherwise, shopping without bothering to call and tell me if they will be lunching or dining home or not. There are days i am not expecting them to and am ready to hit the sack but that particular day they have to return as hungry as a malnourished hungry cow from their shopping ready to chew at anything even paper.
If i have to point that out i do then i am told i complain. So i really don't know what really works anymore. To quietly work and be used by people or to do and stand up for oneself. This way or that one is blamed.
Thus it becomes all the more imperative for a person like me to do stuff to make me self happy. So that each day is a new day. Not a sob crib story.

Now one new adjective has been added to that long list of  adjectives,  " REPETITIVE''. That i am often repetitive and that it hurts them to hear it again and again. Funny thing is no one in the family not my husband, my son, my father, my sister, my helping staff or anyone who is around me once stops to ponder about why i have to be repetitive like a teacher.
Funnier still is the fact that no one really does anything for me. i am the one who does. The one who is taken advantage of. The special on whom adjectives are branded upon and then i am told i am being repetitive.
Something has to be said...maybe my mellowing down becoming quiet and sulking did not work. So ANGRY WOMAN is replaced by R word. Hah !
Those who are reading might be getting the impression that i am some sort of a nag but the funny thing is i am not the nag in my family here rather it is the other way around.

Yeah i remember how we would miss out on the drawing of margins and putting the dates when we were just starting out on in our formal education and the teacher would be repetitive in telling us each single day to draw neat margins with ruler and pencil and put the date on the top right corner and write Class Work in the center of the new line and then to take down what she was writing on the black board...
i am being repetitive because my words are getting wasted and not acted upon. i am not heard or listened to in the first place.
Something wrong with me then...i keep thinking. Feeling awful, wanting to walk away from it all but yet remaining where i am. Here with my family.

Adjectives, accusations labelled and what do i do with my not so supportive family.
i plan these Make Yourself Happy projects and go on with my life.
Temporarily yes my projects do make me happy but then this thing like what my husband just did last evening pricks the inflated balloon of happiness and i am back to square one.

Kabir says get cheated but on your own don't cheat anyone. You getting cheated will give you happiness whereas you cheating others will give you sadness.
i have just a couple of days back been cheated once again by someone in the family i nursed back to health. i think it's pointless explaining what happened because i know in the end TRUTH PREVAILS. But at the moment it hurts.
This particular project was to lessen rather put a concealing curtain on what i was going through. The sense of hopelessness and my husband was very much aware of what i was attempting at. To get back my equilibrium.  And yet knowing me for 30 years what do i get from him. Not even a smile.

Do i feel really feel how Kabir says...No...not really...
Happy to see my babies no doubt about that but quite sad...
Sometimes just words don't work...for some people it doesn't. Nah it does not mean i will become a real mean machine from now on and go on a rampage. Following Kabir i will definitely not want to cheat anyone but just that may not work to lift my sagging spirits and my trust in service to people in distress. That the Young Lady has accused me should not deter me from doing what i have to do the next time an SOS is sent to me should be my effort and intention. i shall work towards that.
But at the moment i feel like taking a 20 meters restraining order against the young lady who is family.
Now a blogdost once told me to share my looking forward to projects with all once. The picture of the not so attractive almost spiral staircase which has just been completed is what i did a makeover of yesterday with least expenditure, my plants and definitely this which in India is called ' JUGAAD'. Meaning in simple terms indigenous technology. Need i remind all that this three BHK Plus i am residing in is a Govt privilege allotted to my husband and the new staircase, a metal one has replaced the dangerously crumbling to sand and cement of the old staircase after an year and more of pleading sometimes and other times sounding like begging for mercy reminders. Quite a shoddy job done but definitely sturdy to be functional enough for a few years now i presume. God alone knows when the blasted red tapism and favoritism will see it being given the rustproof coat of reasonable paint. But i could not wait do what i could do. More for the need to put a balm to my aching heart than to do a makeover.

Now i know being the very first in the colony others will soon look at my hanging cutie pies and soon follow suit. i will revel inwardly even when none will really give me credits for my creativity and ingenuity. i really don't care when my ideas get copied. Although it definitely feels nice if someone does. But it's not a true world anymore. (My partying at the drop of the hat neighbor has her friends believe that all the decorations in the common staircase are done by her.)
i will then when my idea gets copied switch over to something new... that's the devilish streak in me. CATCH ME IF YOU CAN...COPY ME IF YOU CAN...SING SHIVANI... SHIVANI DIWANEE...TANG TANG TANG TANG TANG TANG TANG TANG TANG...( yeah after that song Sing Mohammad Mohammad Ali and then the strum of the guitar)

i have used L shaped ordinary clamps available in hardware stores for Rs 10 each and the simple unsophisticated metal curtain rings which again from the same store for Rs 50 a dozen.
So that these clamps which were twisted and turned into clips with the help of hammer don't slide off the sloping metal plate of a railing if the staircase i have secured them with ordinary malleable wires which were easily twisted tight below with the help of pliers.
And because they are in season the plants suitable i have chosen for my hanging baskets are Verbena, White Allysium  and a couple of Blue Jacomentia ( that's what the nursery man told me the name was of those plants i had bought of the powder blue flowers with white anthers). Soon i shall be hanging my flowering yellow and pink Kalanchoes too.

That's my plan for the day prepare two small baskets hanging baskets. For my two Kalanchoes...Pink and Yellow. Which means not going to the market but foraging from what i already have and see what i can do...
Despite what my husband has said last evening...not that my anger/ hurt has dissipated or anything but this again i am doing to dissipate that anger...and the hurt.
That's me Shivani reporting today...feeling sad but optimistic that this too shall pass but wanting closure once for all...about everything that's been used for her...against her...
Wanting not to be repetitive but flummoxed...Kabir... Kabir not making any sense as yet...but i know for sure will when i shall what i have to do...

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Having My Sails Slapped... this time by the Sound of Drums

“You can’t direct the wind but you can adjust the sails.” ~ Anonymous

In a way i call myself a seeker. For i always have questions and i need simple answers not something that sails over my head. i need someone who can adjust my sails which seeks directions too.

i know Hindus believe in reincarnation and Karma but i am also a strong believer of ' NOW'. i don't care what i did in the past or how i came about in this form from a before life but as of now i am here and i live nurturing not much ill-will but yeah bearing a few grudges here and there which is but natural for the trespasses done on me but overall am clean. Harmless. Yeah that's the word.
It matters now more than ever to co-exist and be harmless.

i have read and i presume most would've like me read it too but i wonder how many want answers as to why Guru Dronacharya asked for Eklavya's thumb as Gurudakshina in the great epic Mahabharata.
Not the answer we all have but the answer that evades us.
Of course we all know it was about no one being able to surpass Dronacharya's own favorite Arjuna and also that Eklavya was a 'lowcaste' and archery ( plus all the skills of warfare) was supposedly reserved for the Kshatriyas, the Warrior Class.

Oh i have seen a lot of movies showing a teacher and student relationship. Read stories too. Was a student once then went on to become a teacher myself. The one experience i had as a student which affected me deeply i had it etched so well in my heart that i dared not repeat it myself as a teacher and really i can't tell if i was successful in that for it's for my successful darlings all over the world to decide if i am bragging about it or telling the truth.
Which is- i never had FAVORITES.
Although i must confess however that my own teachers having their own favorites was what actually propelled me from being an average student to being the one whom the class teacher would fondly look to or face smilingly at while addressing the class. i hated school all the time when i was invisible to those i looked up to as soon as i  was seated on to my desk, my teachers. Liking it only not when i became popular because that by God's grace i did not have to make much efforts for ...was born fairly rich with looks to match.
i really started loving and enjoying school only when my name started featuring in the teachers' 'Fond Of ' list.

Around 2002 there was a Hindi movie ' Sur' with some great songs. Starring Great Comedy Actor Mehmood's son who also made it big as a fantastic singer too. Lucky Ali and co starring a new comer Gauri Karnik.  Not a hit movie though but i liked it. Mainly because it depicted a relationship. It tried to show the ' Super Ego' of a teacher also the ' 'Jealousy' that a teacher can have for it's own protege. To the extent of breaking her completely and driving her off to a nunnery where she decides to be as a recluse for the rest of her life. Dead outwardly and dumb inwardly from within her soul vowing never to sing again and thus become a nun.  A living dead as you might say of the one who could compose and sing much more brilliantly than the one who had first beseeched her from her plain, simple but happy surroundings and tried to polish her.
But of course this being a typical Bollywood movie had to have a coming together after intermission scenario. So in this story a 'melody of life' because the movie is about music and those two associated with it the teacher realizes his mistake and finally reconciles with the soon to become nun student who had while learning from the teacher was also shown to have fallen in love with the teacher. They get back together and the story proceeds with him having made her a star and taking on to another young uncertain clay in his hands to mold into one fine porcelain, one who treats him like a God and that's how the happy melodic but a melodramaticThe End happens in ' Sur'.
Want to see it then pls do with English subtitles on You Tube at

Why all this talk...
Guru of life...
Now another movie...
And probably Oscar Nominated too...

Yeah this is where my blog was heading all along.

Yeah Teachers and their teaching methodology...that's where my blog is moving towards and perhaps a little bit more.
i have just seen this movie and  the effect has been profound, poignant, and a lot many i can't express in just one word.
Those words that i will use might seem harangued as much has been said eloquently by many.
And my blog is not a review. i don't excel in reviews rather i excel at nothing i am just here to express and share.

i thought i was seeing a relationship being built up at first. Probably a genius who needs perfection. Then as the story proceeds my own intent gets suspicious till it becomes scathing and i give it up entirely to be nice towards my feeling for such a teacher.
i was seeing a teacher behave not as a potter one who carefully molds and later polishes to brilliance but rather like the psycho devising brutal and abusive means for his next victim as to how best to snuff the life out of a passion so lovingly nurtured. i felt tension built up as the muscles on my face tightened with a frown, then grimace, sometimes wince and even teeth clenching till the jaws hurt and what not as the word B****** with a barrage of others or whatever i could think of started pouring out. Inwardly though for the CONDUCTOR of the prestigious institution where gifted children came to learn. Tears welling more with anger than for the poor plight of the students themselves.
i kept saying why weren't they all just getting up and bashing him up. Why is the story proceeding that way. This is 2015...
Was he so invincible/ intimidating or does art of learning music from a master really make one so soft or is it that yearning/ quest for learning from a fine conductor is so intense so sincere that one is willing to undergo any amount of trauma/ torture. Even today... in the year 2015?
What kind of a teacher would do that i thought to myself...swearing filthy, sometimes slapping hard other times breaking stuff.
Shaking rudely first and then finally succeeding in his evil attempts at yanking it all off... the hard practiced labored love of life.
All in the pretext of bringing the ' BEST' out of the pupil.

What i felt while watching the movie was that i was seeing the same whiplash super ego the same jealousy i saw in 'Sur' of a teacher for a student.
Right from the beginning Fletcher (acted brilliantly by J.K Simmons for bringing that intensity into the movie) knew of Andrew's (Miles Teller) exceptional skills. 
And he was just using his position as a 'Boss' to torture. Was probably giving kicks to his already super bloated with ego depraved soul. Because according to this teacher ' Good Job' is not a great way to encourage a pupil to get the best out of him. According to this teacher in order to ''... push people beyond what is expected of them..." he has to use this instead:

You are a worthless, friendless, faggot-lipped little piece of shit whose mommy left daddy when she figured out he wasn't Eugene O'Neill and who's now weeping and slobbering all over my drum set like a fucking nine-year-old girl! So for the final FATHER FUCKING time... SAY IT LOUDER! ''

My personal Oscar best keeps shuffling as i go ahead with my have watched list. Till yesterday it was "Still Alice' and now it is Whiplash. Hahahahaha. Fickle minded am i...but hey when did i say i am on the jury...and i still have Birdman, American Sniper, Selma, Mr Turner on my have to watch list. So the shuffling will go on and on till Oscar Night although i suspect Theory Of Everything might nail it.

But wait... i am not done yet.
i will not quit without letting all know what else i found worth sharing in this movie 'Whiplash'.
i found Andrew's belief in himself quite an eye-opener. His coolness about being different from the rest and not having a social life so as to speak which the world might look down upon but which he himself did not much care about very inspiring. i got my lesson number ONE.
That particular family dinner scene where he stands up for himself, i felt that very genuine for that's what i presume happens in a typically rich family when all are into big careers and being one from such a family in chasing dreams not really bothered about anything... money or even those comforts that money provides but just hopelessly into one's real passion quite possible. The family having fun at your expense nit picking at the drop of the hat...typical...generally happens even in mediocre families.
This is what Andrew said then on being snubbed as a drummer... "I'd rather die drunk, broke at 34 and have people at a dinner table talk about me than live to be rich and sober at 90 and nobody remembered who I was."
And finally the way the movie ends...boy i was Drum Struck!!. 
Then all that saxophone and jazz. Not that i am a great jazz lover or anything but it felt good. 
Got reminded of my own student a very special one...the only one who played super Saxophone and i called him Mr Gentleman...cause he was one humble of the entire lot of the super rich 'brats' i taught . Wonder where Ajay Rau is he is doing...
His mom is the the founder of the Little Theatre and the entire family is just one of the super talented family i knew as a teacher.

Coming back to Drums from Ajay and his Saxophone never knew that Drums were human and could speak so personal. That apart from it having a great sound a beat that matched our own heart it can really say everything that you would want it to say and also do for you. To a maniac of a teacher who just won't give up in being relentless. And if you are in love with your drums just like Andrew was you don't have to swear or use filthy words even. Your drums will do it for you as the mouth keeps repeating on being warned by a fearful intimidating conductor. " I'll cue you..." Boom- Tick Boom- Tick Dhak - Tak- Dhik -Tak .
Oh gosh!!! i am goose pimply once again just by the thought of that last scene how the movie ends...
Actually it starts too with the practice of the drums...
Tempo one word i know now from the movie...don't know the words what that is called how it starts...but it starts with some beat of the drums...feels like soldiers are getting ready...

That's why not only for THE TEACHER and the TEACHER- STUDENT relationship but for more do brace yourself for this ' WHIPLASH' and hope all imbibe lots from it just like i did and not just some movie to talk about at dinner table.

Do you know the secret of the true scholar? In every man there is something wherein I may learn of him; and in that I am his pupil.  Ralph Waldo Emerson.

                                                                     Image courtesy

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


Even when it's quite visible to the eyes that the delicate plant is very small itself and hardly grows tall to spoil the beauty of the lawns why is it that it is cruelly yanked off. Hardly 6-8 cm high that's max it can attain above the ground. 
Oh Mazus my Mazus i keep muttering within my breath ever since Guru has introduced me to this PYT. ( Pretty young thing). And i say this with the same love and emotions as Juliet would've said to Romeo...
Letting the 'a' linger a wee bit longer...Maazus that's the way i call this which decorates the base of most of my plant pots on the terrace now.
Wondering about my Guru...pls don't do but what you can do is to check out my blog

Well as promised this is the next in the series.
 Mazus japonica. Tiny white and purple flowers found mostly in damp places.
i often imagine them in wide open green lawns. But then who let's them be. And worst still how many of us really care to stop bend and caress the PYThings.
For generally we humans we want our lawns to be just the plain without- anything- in- it green.
i imagine them dotting the green looking like embroidery. An embroidery having all my favorite colors. White with all hues and shades of the color purple against the lush velvety green.
" The mazus is found all over the northern plains and in the hills to about a height of 1500m. where it flowers in summer. In the plains it flowers in the winter, though some flowers can be found the year around. It is a great favourite with honey bees. In January when not many annuals are in bloom they look to the mazus flower dotting the grass, for nectar."
i think i saw something shining and wanted to believe that it's the nectar that bees take and maybe Guru was showing me some...and somehow got reminded of the Snapdragon flower looking deeply at that drop which shone like wet liquid. What made me think of the Snapdragon was the entire structure of the flower having those upper and lower lips...the bumps...slopes and definitely that deep deep gullet where that wetness shone.
After much reading i have also learnt that Mazus my Maazus does actually belong to the Dogflower family and that is after all a cousin of the Snapdragon/ Dogflower it so much reminded me of. 
Also from the same i also learnt that an infusion of Mazus is used to tone up the system. What it thus informed that this tiny plant again has medicinal importance and hence of considerable significance for us the green- lawn- without- anything- in- it- loving- Homo sapiens.
As for me i like Mazus where ever i can spot them. In the lawns around the damp corners, at the bed of the hedges, pavements, pots...
With or without their fellow compatriots Common Sorrel and a host of other which are perhaps tinier than my own Mazus itself. But then i am one diwanee who is crazy for what many others are not.
i am hoping that through blogging i might find my tribe...but i wouldn't be much worried about that either although it would delight me to meet a few who are diwanee or diwanaa like me.

One particular aspect about Sorrel though and how Mazus is special. Whereas Sorrel needs the full sunlight to show it's open bright shining face to you Mazus does not. It waits for it's natural growth from bud to the flower and then blooms even before mid morning sometimes even before sunrise. 
i guess that should make it a favorite then for photo taking late starter freaks like me who can take some clear pictures in the Golden Hour of a clear full bloom. 

And like they would say in Delhi lingo...

...for Mazus this time... Guru tussi great ho ! 

i needn't once again say that every time i see a flower any flower i get reminded also of Wordsworth the poet...this time from his ' Daffodils '
      " ...  I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
                                                                    What wealth the show to me had brought: ..."

Well Done Vikas Bedi !!

i am sitting glued to the TV watching 'Her' whom i so much admired and at once disliked when she deserted first whom she got associated with and came into the national scenario as an ' Anti Corruption Activist'  then became awol from that association reappearing just in bits as a commentator on certain news channels but suddenly re appearing BAM! in a major way as a chief ministerial candidate for not one but 17 continuous days in a row.

The media reporting on the lachrymose glands giving vent to her emotion at times and other times reporting of her inability cope with a fast run of a mere 20 meter and gasp for breath huffing and puffing focusing only on her panting breath while they thrust the mike close to her face as they bombarded her with questions as she did her road show the other day. Probably just a typical media maneuver and i am suspecting not a clean one at that to report not only on her feminine theatrics but also to trash her physical fitness.
As if to proclaim that she being an IPS should've bungee jumped, done a smooth marathon or maybe  a Bhaag Bedi Bhaag emulating Milkha Singh to show her mettle run. Blah !
There's a difference between being a retired IPS officer and a Gym Trainer guys ...

Hats off to her
She once again gets to me to believe in Her. Yeah our very own Kiran Bedi as you would've guessed. i am taking about this great 'First' lady. Well 'First' for me and also i guess for all the women of India.
Watching her addressing the press and thus the people of India on NDTV.
Time is something around 1.10 post noon.

How to gracefully accept defeat and be clear in one's intentions...yeah that's what i am getting from her now. Not when she had decided to be the BJP candidate.

That's what i did not like. For quite sometime i thought she did it for her own vested interests. For the kursi...the lure of the seat and kept wondering why did she have to do that. That would not give her the power rather as a chief minister her powers w
ould be curtailed and she would cease to be 'SHE' but turn into a puppet. Whatever would happen to all her dreams of having anti- corruption pro poor working government fluttering the Tricolour at Ramlila grounds last year.  And all those tall claims about so many i wondered and wondered...
i am not quite familiar with politics and the games people play. i don't even follow political news either. Who quit which party joined whom does not interest me.
But what she is saying now and expressing without tears with her head held high is what i am believing.

Now as she speaks accepting her defeat with dignity, apologizing to the chief of the party that she joined first and later going on to express how it affected her to see people, small kids waiting to see her in the middle of the chill night just to have a glimpse of her i believe her.
i believe that she wants Delhi to be a ' World Class City'.
i am with her for ' Women Security' and applaud her to stop ' Child Trafficking'.
Finally i admire her for not only expressing that her best could not meet with the expectations that her party had of her but that she did Her Best.
Giving full marks to her opponent's party she applauded the efforts of the people of Delhi who have made their referendum in favor of Mr Kejriwal and she is happy about that and has no regrets whatsoever.
Also pointing out that her own party is a responsible cadre based party and will surely assess it's strategy and performance.
Reminiscing very briefly about Mr Kejriwal's association with the 'URBAN POOR' but bringing it to the fore nevertheless. Spoke about his hard work and said that she hopes and will always work in a way that his efforts are rewarded as a responsible citizen of the country.
The best part of it all that i am all gaga over, " I have not lost the election..."

And why do i believe that...because probably or maybe i might've had my differences too. i know we make teams. It doesn't matter which team you are on and always it's not about which team wins. It's about principles too and opinions too. We are born to be different. Let us agree to disagree and all that jazz.
But in the end it should be about everybody. It should be about GROWTH...for all...
As for me i am again Happy to have her back in my Look Up To nurture a dislike is not a nice feeling... not good at all...and i am telling this to myself too...Grow up Shivani :)

Monday, February 9, 2015

Let's Just Simply Be Happy

"Manifest plainness,
Embrace simplicity,
Reduce selfishness,
Have few desires."
-  Lao-Tzu, Tao Te Ching 
Yeah that's precisely what dawned upon me just when i had decided to be thoughtless and aimless and simply roam around. But can we really be that. Fact of the matter being voices are going on and we are inwardly talking or if not talking then listening to our own thoughts. But that about keeping it simple but sweet came later...after a few moments of inward talking.
This moment when i saw the children sitting in groups in anticipation of the Bhel Puri as the teachers got busy distributing those small paper plates, the thought that first erupted as a whisper was '' Choti choti khusiyan". Maybe the kids were young primary ones and the scene was that of the school picnic. i was gripped with nostalgia. Loved and connected with the sight of that little girl polishing the tangy masala ( spices) off the plate...probably she got her share first.
Oh it was not so far away down that memory lane when i used to do just the same. When i too more than the real Bhel Puri itself loved licking the tangy spicy sweet and sour left over wet spices off the dried leaf plate sometimes and even newspapers other times fact i still do it in movie theaters in the dark. Lick those dry granules of spices left over at the bottom of those snack pouches with my fingers perfectly sure that nobody is watching.
And i hope nobody has.... seen me lick...making pinching like fingers and going right to the bottom of the popcorn carton... picking those bits and plopping them into the mouth rolling the lips to suck and lick with relish but mind you with dexterity enough to keep the rest of the hands clean...hahahahaha....

Don't know what made me call Happiness ' Choti' because Happiness is a feeling and whether there is any yardstick at all to measure it after all ... maybe it's become our habit to measure everything...can't tell but yeah it's also become the trend these days to call Happiness as thus. Big Happiness or Small Happiness. In common parlance i also remember saying 'very happy'  but is there any BIG happiness or SMALL happiness i am positive now there ISN'T any such. i just know one experience for sure for after having chased this and been there bought that, this simple truth SMALL THINGS BOOST HAPPINESS BIG TIME!!!.
Like licking the tangy spices while watching any movie in a dark theater or like these small kids having a picnic today with Bhelpuri with a bit of sunshine in the winter and friends.

What i really mean is simplicity and the simple pleasures of life. Maybe my thought initially tried to battle it out that true Happiness cannot be compared or measured .
i consider myself blessed and fortunate for i have indulged into many of such when i was growing up. But my heart goes out to all those who are as busy as the machines that work non-stop or maybe allowed a brief spaced out time for cooling the system. i am aware of one such paid holiday of 14 days in which these human machines then make a copy cat mission for some BIG HAPPINESS in some exotic expensive locale only to come back in a haste to their messy apartments just to dump their travel luggage and get back to the same hum drum of their motor routine working life. Wait desperately for the weekend to do the pending laundry and stuff and catch up on that sleep that they long for from which they wish don't have to get up remembering of the errands still to be done before maniac Monday hits them with a nasty jab on the chin shin bun ...whatever.
i guess that's why the urgent adrenaline rush these days for a ' Happy Weekend' instead of ' A Happy Week' on Mondays.
Got reminded of what Pearl S Buck said,

“Many people lose the small joys in the hope for the big happiness.”

i sincerely wish and hope that something changes. Just having a Happy Street on a Happy Sunday will it suffice i wonder. But then again i feel something is better than having nothing. So it feels good that this need was felt and some cities are incorporating this concept. But maybe we need to pitch in too. We have to figure out a way through which we can slow down for a bit so that we can really feel how big or small our happiness has been. Real ly.

Want also to share this poem which echoes with Pearl S Buck only thing that listening to it in one's mother tongue i could fathom the meaning of Happiness in it like how i did when i saw the children and the teachers enjoying their picnic with not much but yet with everything that one could possibly need. Tasty Bhelpuri, friends. a nice natural but clutter free place to sit and a bit of sunshine... everywhere.

i have requested for an English translation from the composer. Once it's done will post it here. Initially i got it as a whatts app message. i had saved it all along to search for it on You tube. Imagine getting an audio clip with such nice voice modulation as a forward and nothing to fall back on. It is traumatic for a person like me. But thanks to technology a few key words in Hindi and i found Mr Madhur Chadha.
And since i did get his composition rendered so brilliantly after some effort it took from me and because it is so appropriate for my blog i want to share it with all those who haven't yet received it...the fortunate blessed souls who are not yet the victims of another malaise that has hit us hard chin shin bun whatever... Yeah WHATTS APP
Just another virtual world of communication driving people nuts and perhaps hastening more of this declining trend of real communication. Which again i would assert was one simple and happy means of communication in which we could see OR feel.
That which emojees can FAKE but can't make us feel.

Hope u get the drift and also of The STORY OF SMALL HAPPINESS...yeah transliteration of KISSA CHOTI KHUSHI KA...

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Guru Nikon, Buch Bucha aka Chickweed and Wordsworth

i know it might sound weird but because it is true i must say it.
A thing, an object has just become my friend philosopher and guide. Patient, and kind. One who ignores my mistakes as if they never happened and yet helps me advance one step ahead each time i am in session with this new mentor of mine. Whispering wisdom, opening up frontiers, without interruption wanting to hear my sorrows if targets were not successfully accomplished instead gently urging me to breathe in deep and give it another try and the best of all show me vistas and those parts of universe i never would have known existed.
i shall divulge with pleasure the name.
None but My NIKON DSLR 5100.
Of course such a relationship is possible. And why did i call it weird in the first place for i know men no people would be more appropriate who call their automobiles 'Baby' and even have names for them.

This particular blog is about one such aspect...that part of the universe which does not exist for most of us mainly because of our own stubborness of always looking up and not below. Also because we have for sake of our own vested interests decided to give them names and thus made them unworthy of our attention and love. So my Guru showed me that which we called Buch Bucha in Hindi and Chickweed/ Stitchwort and many other names in English which i shall divulge later in the blog as i proceed.
So then if my Guru could morph and take human form someone as William Wordsworth the poet who loved nature well enough to put it at a very high pedestal then Guru might've said after knowing of Buch Bucha's beauty and it's medicinal worth, '' Wisdom is oftentimes nearer when we stoop than when we soar." Quite a deep thought and i'm sure Wordsworth meant a lot more than just crawling on your fours but to see Buch Bucha and the glory of it beauty one has to stoop rather sometime even be on all fours for the flowers are very tiny and generally the plant spreads like a carpet on the floor of the earth sticking very close to the grass and hardly discernible at times . Some flowers are about a quarter inch in diameter and others even less.
That's what my Guru showed me. That the carpet had beautiful tiny white flowers with five deeply notched petals that look like ten and also five green sepals. The sepals sometimes appear larger than petals. Actually they are larger. The flowers close by evening and open by mid morning fully. They also close when it's about to rain.
i wouldn't have known all this about the tiny beauty had i not been in session with my Guru doing Sweet Williams, Calendulas, Petunias. Gerberas, Begonias...all that were flamboyantly there as the lovely spring seasonal s.

As if holding a child by the finger my Guru was reiterating Wordsworth and saying, " Come forth into the light of things, let nature be your teacher."
And thus i learnt that this large mat of lovely lush foliage that i had been ignoring all this while as it multiplied while many others shivered, withered and finally melted away during the chill of Delhi winters is scientifically known as Stellaria media. The common name of this plant which actually is a native of Europe is Chickweed because it is often eaten by chickens. Not only is the plant medicinal and used in Homeopathy to make drugs for diseases like Rheumatism and Psoriasis but that the plant is also edible and is used as a leaf vegetable often raw in salads. Wisdom poured in as i read pages and pages of Stellaria media starting with
Other common names are Mouse-Ear, Satinflower, Starweed, Starwort, Winterweed, Chickenwort and Stitchwort.
My eyes are glued...i am hardly breathing and i want Guru to really appreciate this...i hear Wordsworth , " With an eye made quiet by the power of harmony and the deep power of joy we see into the life of things,''
Guru acknowledges that solitude and this friendship has worked wonders for me when he smiles at my efforts through the screen and once again seems to chant the same of this of my favorite poet, " When from our better selves we have too long been parted by the hurrying world, and droop. Sick of it's business of it's pleasures tired, how gracious, how benign is solitude.''
It is hard to anticipate then how without my friend, philosopher and guide my gadget my guru i could have seen a rare beauty or even experienced the joy of hearing my favorite poet from not any lawn or garden or any open vast stretch of land but this...a pot which had my grafted Chinese Oranges. See the mat of foliage there...
...That's where my Guru Gadget took me to...
i thus share my wisdom that i got from stooping down low and getting on my fours ...
Buch Bucha or what the chickens eat is not the only one there is more that only my Guru could show me and i shall be more than delighted to share my wisdom by one...
Till my next one then...sure do look up and also above but also now remember to look down and below. Cheers !!! 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Yellow Arrow Gully Trail

....continued from where i left off... clittety cluck...cratch...keetch...
i look down up this way that way stopping sometimes and peering at crevices...noticing the stains and patterns on the if something has been poured over them. Also wondering how green vegetation have appeared from those tiniest of cracks or in other places tree with ramifications assuming shapes making the whole look like an abstract sculpture...
Some sides of the Gully with the light and all the chemical alterations/ visible on the rock wall made the entire look like a painting of some sort...

On my way i saw plenty of  healthy thick bushes of leafless spurge called THHOR or scientifically also known as Euphorbia caducifolia...the last time i had seen quite a variety of some beautiful Thhor was in Jurassic Cactus Park at Kuldhara in Jaisalmer. Then i was fortunate to see many of them with bright red, pink and green blossoms. But here sans blossoms they still looked superb in their fullness and green ness as a contrast to all that earthy ochre beige and brown and grey. All around erupting as a gigantic bush of green among the pinks of the rocks against the blue sky in this vast free space.

Funny thing is i was following the yellow Gully trail arrow but i am not sure if i got slightly diverted to another trail because it took me to a sub summit of some sort and not to a lake as was mentioned in the map. No i did not panic as help was at hand. An EMERGENCY phone number given in the visitor's guide cum map. Besides there was not much to be alarmed about for i was not in a dense forest or anything where i was lost. Rather this sub summit felt very refreshing and quite relaxing. i could see ...the road a couple of houses and how to reach there...everything...
It was just amazingly beautiful. This place where i had reached. It felt somewhere yet like the middle of nowhere of the trail and i felt excited and adventurous to get back on the right trail. Also rested here for awhile, drank a few sips of water, surveyed the area before i moved back to look for those yellow arrows.

i could see the outer walls of the Mehrangarh fort and also those ropes through which the famous Flying Fox Zipline adventure sport touring of Mehrangarh fort is so enthusiastically indulged into by the more daring and raring to go tourists. Contemplated on the thought that although it looked scary (all those jutting out jagged sharp rocks not to miss the height too ) maybe if it is safe enough i must give it a try. 
i did reach the real summit without much beating round the bush and going about the same place twice. From this yellow gully trail viewpoint the ramparts of the fort and a Shiva Temple perhaps at a distance far away evoked serenity and calmness and i wanted not even to hear my thoughts ...maybe i wanted to hear the sound of the temple bell...if it could reach me...i could not. Neither could i see much but it being nestled towards a side where there was some dense green vegetation. i let my mind imagine devotees who would be there while i am here watching from a distance a place of worship which looked from a distance detached but yet emanated stillness...

Return was easy as all i had to do was to just look for the guiding the way yellow arrows. Well one never can miss any as they are there at easy intervals as you traverse across the rocks, grasses, scrubs, ups and downs.
Soon i see a familiar gully which leads me to the reception.

i rush towards the entrance and because my trail had got over well ahead of time i lingered around in the front reception area.

Then used the rest rooms too which surprisingly i found very well maintained , sanitized and as clean as three star hotel. Admired the photographs of the flora of the parks which although are displayed everywhere were even in the rest room. But before entering that clean loo what had sought my attention immediately was this against the rhyolite rock plastered wall ...

A very typical Jodhpuri rather i should say how it would suit Rajasthan to do it. In this case to direct the respective genders to their respective destinations. So cute and artistic but most importantly the version so very Rajputana. Moreover i could see the use of all the rocks that could be from the Park itself. Rhyolite, Sandstone and maybe Quartz or even Feldspar in those His and Her creations... 

There was many more that i could if i had the time...especially the vegetation...all those plants mentioned in the gully trail. But for a person like me even 24 hours would be less...i would need days. So then this is it what i have of that yellow gully trail which i took when i had been to Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park.
More of what i have to say in my next post...