Wednesday, December 24, 2008

lazy days ahead!

One fine day, a preteen declared "Laziness is AWEsome, amma!!!"

L'il bro shakes his head and mutters "Phew! it is so difficult to handle Amma" and adds a "chill down, amma" for good measure!


See why i send them to school?

Since we aim to please, the next ten days will see us putting the pre-teen's theory into practice. We will let our hair down, (rayshma, behave!) will say yes to french fries and no to lettuce, and will coax our feet to walk a little more.

We will 'chill down?' in the Australian sun together and see what the fuss about the Sydney fireworks are all about!

So here's wishing everyone who visits my space a bright and pleasant year ahead!

Now back to the packing!!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

What's on my fridge?

"What's on your fridge?" asked Preeti, who is just a mother of two. :)

'A few somethings", i wish i could have answered, few being the keyword here, but ...take a peek

My fridge surface continually changes. In Delhi it looked a whole different than it does now. Besides, the arrangement keeps varying. My boys keep moving it all over the fridge surface.

There are 15 magnets, out of which a few are of places we have visited together, the rest are put there by G. So much for this place being just my very own.

Most of them have a tale to tell. Some have been with us for ages. The Singapore one was picked up by my eldest boy on our first visit brings back lovely memories of our first trip abroad with the children.

That's the family at the beach and the other was taken with two orangutans in Pattaya. I was quite happy with my resident monkeys and really didn't want these two lesser additions but of course who listens to moms any more?

The picture of the baby is a favorite one...It is of Swaraj when he was @ 4mths. I just LOVE that pic...

There are two tiny Garfield ones (in pink and blue) added here courtesy my boys. i also see a Spider man one very ingeniously taped onto a magnet making its way here. And of course two animal magnets courtesy the zoological park here.

The black magnet with a pouch, has something very important - the white paper consists of lunch and dinner menus for the whole week that G managed the boys when I was in Bangalore - It was mainly followed to the T, even to the no of cookies put in the snack box, barring a call I got from the boys on a paratha dinner day, begging for Maggi noodles. :)

The resident environmentalist (my elder boy) has added his two magnets (the ones in white at the bottom)from the NEA (national environmental agency) . One of them bears the words "Turn me on, FAN my ego' ! (i'm glad that it has a pic of the fan, otherwise we would be giving people ideas, wouldn't we...*wink)

The Santa Claus has been clipped on by my lil one...

And yes, the blue/white background is an old project chart done by Swaraj...Most apartments in Singapore come furnished with basic electrical appliances and amenities (the air con, the washing machine etc). Since the fridge is not my own, that paper is supposed to prevent the magnets from scratching the fridge surface. (That's why it ends up looking neater too)

So what's on my fridge? Mostly fun memories, the current and the old, jostling for space there!

And what story does your fridge tell?

Abha, pink dogwood, ugich, Joy, preethi, rayshma, actually everyone who wants to...its showtime :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

sweet somethings to spicy nothings

There are times i wish i could directly translate my thoughts into my laptop. There are these tidbits running in my mind, untethererd and by the time i finish my work and get to the blog,'s no longer there, buried as it must be under the ratio and proportion sums and the spellings and a myriad other things which define my day.

Then there are times i wish i had continued with my anonymous self while blogging. I could then get away with a truly outrageous statement like '..............',


Don't go away, i'm thinking, i'm thinking!!!

Now i know why authors wrote under pseudonyms. It allows them freedom to write what they think. That's the only reason i can't come up with something atrocious. I'm not anonymous...

I've always been fascinated by certain words in English novels. You know those paragraphs where honey, sugar, cutie pie, sweet heart are used as terms of endearment by couples. I used to wonder how would someone like being addressed thus? Sugarplum? lambikins? Ofcourse the then unimaginative mind (then = younger) would come up with situations where the guy would say "honey?" and the gal may actually pass him some honey!...

I think it makes them hungry!!! (*wink)

aha! lightbulb moment!

The thing is i find them a tad too sweet and too docile...How come noone spiced them up?

Now that i'm *ahem* grown up, just wondering :

  • Maybe the future novels will have a husband saying " Pepper?!!!" or the lady may purr "You are my Godiva?!!' (that's the best i could do considering the current ratio problems floating in my mind)
  • I wonder what a calorie conscious couple would use as their fat free terms of endearment.

Forgive me my nonsensical wanderings but there's only so much one can do after seeing a 11-yr-old search for the tallest and shortest arsenal player on the web, and then me drawing a huge christmas tree for the 6 yrold to color and being ditched by the hubby this weekend.

Now to get back to those study books WITH the kiddos this time....

Aside 1...Guess, this falls under "One of those times, i wish i was anonymous" list.

Aside 2: You think you can do better than that? Fine!!!!

Come on now, let's see that imagination at work....

Aside 3: Just in case you needed more words...of the sweet kind to say to someone (*wink )

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Snippets...of this and that

I met a Singaporean in the play area yesterday. I was playing Badminton with my 6 yrold who was at home during school hours, supposedly taking rest after a very nasty cut on his lip... Conversation veered around to the mumbai terror, and she said 'Very unsafe country, India' and shuddered...i protested that noone is safe anywhere, and pointed out the recent bangkok situtation at the airport...but deep inside, my heart sank, because she was true wasn't she? So many questions, and no answers....

Was talking to someone who talked about the rich and poor victims...If you are talking about official apathy or general ineptitude, go ahead. In the end, grief is universal, be it for the two-year-old Moshe Holtzberg who will never remember his parents, or the 13 yrold boy in hospital who is waiting for a family which will never turn up or the GM who lost his family in the Taj or the parents who lost their brave sons to the terrorists or the mother who lost her child at the station. :(

They all started their day as any other...and paid with their lives. Living a normal life is dangerous. Perhaps the politicians should try it...

The hospital recognizes my 6 yrold now, which is not good news......this must be the nth time i'm getting him there invariably for cuts, deep ones at that..that boy has springs on his feet...

Graciousness is much in demand in Singapore. While filling in the form at the hospital, i took quite some time to locate a number which they needed . The receptionist was helpful and tried various futile combinations to access his previous records. I apologised for the delay and also thanked them while leaving. The receptionist looked at me gratefully and said, "You are a gracious lady, Thank you for appreciating us. Not many realise that we are here to help you." (totally his words). This is not the first time that someone is telling me this here...but it made my day...

While on the 6 yrold, he looked totally like hanuman, courtesy that swollen lip...minus the tail , of course...:)

Monday, December 1, 2008

Leading to the big picture

In addition to my post below...

(Click on the highlighted words to read the linked articles)

  • Does anyone out there know what's happening to the victims of the CST tragedy? I hope the Government is doing something for their families. (Note: This was what i initially meant. I'm not belittling any of the tragedies, every family which lost one of its own is grieving, its true that a live hostage drama needed to be covered... )

  • @ 40 people were killed in VT..., I read this sad story here. There were also the poor taxi drivers who lost their lives.

  • Death ultimately is a great leveller... :(

  • I'm scared that this tragedy will soon be reduced to just another significant date - 26/ comparable to 9/11....

  • It was reported that the family of slain ATS chief Hemant Karkare has declined the Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's offer of monetary help of @ Rs. 1 crore. The lives lost were truly priceless...I hope that the money reaches a few needy bereaved families.

  • I'm amazed that people have directed their energies into creating a controversy out of a filmmaker visiting the site. I'm sure there are more important things to worry about right now than someone's lack of sensitivity...but Ziah has a valid point when she told me "It is hyped to show how casual, politicians take this event...if damage survey is turned into a morbid terror tourism package, i have NO words to say"

  • I hope those brave, definitely underpaid, brave commandos get the applause, adulation and compensation they deserve. I like what this post had to say about it, esp the last line... If sports persons can be rewarded by the government for their achievements, i believe that these brave heroes who have committed their lives to our country deserve some kind of appreciation. They were the ones battling it out there, without a break. It is thanks to them the crisis was controlled.... The problems lie elsewhere, for clues look towards the seats of power...

Of course, most of what i know is due to the same media. Hopefully Mumbai is not taking it lying down. I'm glad to read that the citizens have taken positive steps forward. Even the biggest of pictures is eventually made of tiny squares. Every little action counts. Go do your bit, however little. It really does matter. If you don't know what to do by your own, recognize the catalysts of change and follow them.

Is this the calm before the next storm? If so, let the storm be one of change!


For those who want to do something, but don't know what, here's a few steps taken by others... by kiran and from Parul's blog from prats' emotional ecology

Sunday, November 30, 2008

What Now!!!

So much has happened this last week. Events that could have been avoided. Events which highlighted the insensitivity of the media and the sleeping politicians. Events which revealed massive chinks and deficiencies in our security system...

They came in from the sea this time, just as they had come in from the sky in another country in another time...This time they were smart, even confident. The very audacity of the attacks mocked our defence system. They attacked the foreigners, thus ensuring world coverage. It is also believed that this was a known threat, which makes what happened even more shocking...

Did you see those terrorists? They were mere kids! Kids with Guns!!!! and this time it was for real...these madmen managed to create havoc and the death of so many. They caught us napping. How could that have been possible? But it was, televised as it was to every corner of the world.

The last few days have been spent just watching the television and my laptop, wanting to stop reading but not able to... I just kept reading and watching...

The scene at the VT station is haunting...My son looked on horrified and then turned away saying "They are mad, Amma! Why would anyone want to do that?" Its scary to think that soon this 11 yr-old may get immune to this too. Just like most of us have become.
Much as i miss india and am waiting to get back, i can't blame him if he wants to stay on. When i reached Singapore two days back (luckily my flight was not via bangkok) and hugged my children, a guilty thought made itself loud in my head "at least they are safe here" it screamed..

I'm fed up of listening to insipid, depressing speeches and searching for politicians who come out only when the coast is clear. Where are the leaders when you need them?

These were innocent people who lost their lives. Who paid dearly...for being at the wrong place at the wrong time. For being brave. For being normal. For trusting the country they chose to visit. Will they be soon forgotten because unfortunately 'life does goes on" ?

Then there were the resilient youth who helped others before they thought of themselves, a complete mirror image of the guntoting zombies. The stories are still pouring in of guardian angels. Isn't that cause for hope?

The need of the hour is finding the right leadership to take our country forward...Its time to make a big deal of showing everyone that WE do matter...Of wanting to know why the brave died despite having bullet proof vests...Of why it took so long to fly down the critical team. Of asking questions and demanding answers.

I've been reading blogs after a break...By and large everyone echoes the same sentiment...of wanting to do something, anything ...I see determined people all around having one thing in common..they are all seething with rage...It is the right time to guide that anger in the right direction. They need to unite and take a big first step, perhaps have a common goal... any ideas what that step could be?
These are disoriented thoughts finding its way here...Others have said it far better than me...take a look...


I've just begun reading the feel free to add to the list...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SURPRISE!, surprise!

My grandfather passed away last week...Leaving me with nothing but a whole lot of memories to clutch onto. He was truly a good man, having always followed a principle of generosity and giving back to society in many ways. Right now, i'll leave it at that..there is so much that i would want to say but not yet...

Understandably, the week has been melancholic, with G being away in Finland. I also realised that however sad you can be, life does indeed move on...albeit reluctantly

And so the hubby came back, took one look at me and promptly decided that he would manage kids, home and work (*GASP!!!), hopefully in that order, while i go to India to be with my mom and grandma. Now how did he know that was where I wanted to be at the moment?!!! and when did he turn into a mind reader?!!! When? When?!!!

The next day, i saw the surprise gift lying on the table for me and a happy anniversary wish! What?!! When?!!! (i clearly need to improve on my surprised vocabulary)

Now G does not like a lot of fuss..ergo, surprises and G do not go together... ERGO pls do notice my new improved language skills, by inserting Latin here and there..

Back to the surprise act...It is generally me who likes to surprise, be it with tacky jokes or sentimental drama, or overactive vocal displays...

The last time i truly spectacularly surprised G was by blacking out and hurting my forehead....a few days before his surprise 40th birthday party! You can always count on me to do things in style. We also had to cancel the birthday party.

So this gift indeed was quite an uncharacteristic gesture. Especially since this month has passed without the customary not so subtle references to special occasions, gifts, etc..etc...

Just goes to show that it's possible to spend 15 years together and still not know everything about the other person!!

The bottom line is that these two gestures have done the needful! Made me all very sentimental and acting just like a karan johar film heroine. Is there a law against being too nice?
While i was initially living with the cheerful image of a harassed 41 yr old (make that 42) running to the bus-stop with two boys and schoolbags and 6 snack boxes,(sigh..what a sight!), I've reluctantly tossed that picture out of the window. I'm suddenly feeling very very benevolent. and loving. and contented. I'm busy freezing dinners and in general trying to make life easier for the poor dear, the next week. I've also told my two angels who use me as their personal punching bag to kindly wait for my return to resume service.

(i'm also ignoring the suspicion that well timed surprises to emotional suckers are indeed very beneficial to the other person!!! It doesn't pay to be too cynical...)

Please do notice the dears and darlings liberally sprinkled here and there throughout the post.

and also the fact that I'm mentioning G exclusively in this post!!! (trust me, you need to be very special and current news to make it here...)

Can you believe we've spent 15 years together? already?!!!Surprises never cease do they?!

Happy anniversary to us!!! And here's to many many more!!! *clink

and you guys take care, while i spend a few days with my mom and family, gathering more precious memories of my grand dad to treasure and keep and ofcourse till I return back home to the ones who make my moments memorable in every way!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Goodbye

My boys leave early for school. Their bus comes to pick them up at 7.30. There are two snack and lunch boxes to be packed for each child and mornings are crazy. I set the alarm at an unearthly hour and get up 30 minutes after the sound has literally alarmed me. The first half an hour goes in very uncharitable thoughts towards the whole schooling system which has been heartless enough to disregard my sleep when they set their time. This is accompanied by a good clanking of the tea pot and the pans, which incidentally serves as an alarm for my neighbor and a few sleeping birds. Then i say hello to the first waking bird i hear.

What is that you say? You wonder why the hustle bustle when i can get up a little earlier? What? And miss out the drama and excitement in my life? Never!!

Nevertheless, after a good exercise of the vocal system and the limbs, running to and fro getting a petulant 6 yr old to eat something, the 11 yr old to stop dreaming in the shower, we do manage to tumble out of the house. In one piece.

G in spite of contributing to the chaos, does help in many ways. Sometimes he also gets this insane urge to click a photograph of the kids just when they are leaving. How i react is best left unsaid.

After checking if they've worn the right shoes, the bags on their shoulders and the smile on their faces, its time to get into the elevator. That's when the kids scream "I'll be back soon" or a chirpy "see you later, alligator" to G, hug him and rush in. (This stems from a little something we've been taught since childhood. Never to say that we are going but always that we will be back soon. ) sometimes sleepy, at times sprightly but always loud...we never compromise on the decibel level.

Sometimes we are early and we chat or play little games to spend the time. Everyday the bus enters the condo at 7.25 sharp. They get in, find their seats, buckle themselves up. I wave till the bus goes out of sight. I can see the little face pressed to the pane, making funny faces. The 11 yr old looks back, half waving, when the bus finally turns. Sometimes it takes a U-turn and makes an appearance on the opposite end of the road too. I'm still there, waving when i see them. With a prayer in my heart and wishing they have a great day.

It brings back memories of early goodbyes when I used to drop them to school in Delhi. I would still wait till the last strand of hair disappeared from my view. Sometimes the little imps would bounce back and find me still there. with a silly smile on my face

The boys recently told me that IF i wanted, i could stay at home while they waited for the bus. That is when i told them that i'm doing it more for myself. That my day starts well when i get to say bye to them. That if it wasn't for the fact that G has a train to catch, he too would have been here with them. (they love it too when he manages to wait with them). That on the rare occasions that I cannot make it, I feel miserable.

And unknowingly like most things, it has become a habit. For them. The waiting. The jokes. The smiles. The funny faces. The good byes. I think they've begun to need it too. Because they look out for me now, even when they are on the opposite end of the road.

Most times, good byes make me sad. There are a few good byes you never ever want to say. But sometimes, there can be a 'good' in the 'bye'.

I love the sameness of this routine. It tells me that all is well in my world. This is one moment where i don't mind saying bye.

Because the good bye has become such an integral moment of my day.

Because there would come a time when it may not be feasible.

Because time stands still, long enough for me to enjoy the moment for what it is.

And then

it gives me a gentle nudge to rush back because i need to say bye to G too. :)

Sunday, November 2, 2008


episodes from my everyday life

Tring!tring! the phone rings...

"hello? Suma? V here" (a friend's husband )

"hiii!!! When did you ..." the younger boy enters within my line of vision wearing lime yellow on pale yellow, i blink away the image of a jaundiced jeetendra (why jeetendra, beats me!!), and amidst fervent sign language, manage to also scream "change your pants right now!!!

a squawking sound heard from the other end of the line brings me back to the phone receiver in my hand...

' err..V,sorry i didn't mean you. i was talking to my son..."

am i glad I didn't say "drop your pants!'

The issue with having sons is that they are always playing with balls....


...isn't it an issue when it is put like that?!!!! esp in front of people!


Children have this homing instinct. The minute the phone receiver is in your hand they zone in on you and need to talk to you...R.I.G.H.T then...It's always an emergency worth hollering for...Now i hardly realise i have a phone in my hand... much to the dismay of the poor victim on the other line.

the other day

talking to my friend (of course she does not have kids)...after 5 minutes, she says...i'll call you later, 'sounds' like you are busy..

me: busy? no, i'm not ...

I look around...the boys are 'playing' and one is dangling from the bed in a precarious position, ... the noise is deafening....but hey this is normal

No..listen...i can hear you...hello? I say, realising too late that i'm talking to the receiver...

Coward, i mutter!!

While househunting

a long day spent in looking at 5 condominium blocks...all scattered across the island...i look at the last one and tell G tiredly, i so hate this condom...let's try few more and see if we get a better one...
(*sheesh did i say that aloud? pls tell me i didn't?)

the house agent's face assures me i did!

and that's the history behind why I will always call it an apartment block and not a condominium...

The intercom bell rings. It's the security guard.

'Yes, la, have you ordered a meal? '

I wish i had but sadly i hadn't so i reluctantly told him that perhaps the guy had the wrong block. 5 minutes later i hear a thumping on my door.I open it to find a guy with his hands on his waist and glaring at me, the way i do when i'm ticking off my boys...

i look at him worried

and he says' why? you don't want your mail'?'

me : what mail...?

guy, still glaring: the security guy said you didn't want the mail...

ahh so he's a courier guy!

so i have a hearing problem, but you would associate order and meal together, wouldn't you? right? how can i order a mail?


I suffer from the 'wandering mind' syndrome. Simply put, if i'm in a group and the discussion's going nowhere, i have this ability to detach myself and immerse myself in my thoughts. In one such moment , i seem to have volunteered to organise games for the kids for the post diwali gettogether.

ideas solicited from the wonderful readers...:)

erm..okay...pretty please!!


Guess you all had a great diwali and halloween!

Mine have been highly momentful, as always!


Thursday, October 16, 2008

A 'tense' situation!!!

I find myself tensed...Prats and rayshma had tagged me LOOOOOOOOOng back on the past present and the future...and as usual, i errr...ummm...have been a ....bit busy.

its been so long since they've tagged me, that the past has been shifted further back, the present has shifted into the past and the future has become the present....confused?!!! *mission accomplished :)

~ The tag copy ~Two questions in each category answer them and then tag your friends from the blog-o-sphere. (Simple enough right) Leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been tagged and you are all set.

Yesterday - Your oldest memory - What were you doing 10 years ago?

Today -Your first thought today morning - If you built a time capsule today what would it contain?

Tomorrow - This year ….What do you see yourself doing 14 years from now?

~ End Tag details ~

just wondering why 10 yrs back and 14 yrs ahead?!!! not that it makes any difference but....


Your oldest memory: My oldest memory would be a faint one of me singing some song about a cockroach in nursery school!!!

and whaddya know, i found it on youtube...!!!!! and we sang it in English...

And another one where the teacher tied her hanky over my mouth, because I was such a chatter box…(the fact that both my boys have completely taken after me in this respect, was revealed at the recent parent-teachers meeting)

What were you doing 10 years ago?: 10 years ago, I was in Kolkata, with a very busy husband and a dedicated 14 mth old who had trained me well…Life was less complicated then, a new job, a new city, a new role as parents…


Your first thought today morning: Thinking about my 11 yr-old who has gone for his first overnight 5 day camp.

If you built a time capsule today what would it contain?: Is there some way I can pick up all the weeds in the society and zap them back…so that there really will be a future worth waiting for?


This year ….: It’s been a year in slow motion…sort of makes up for last year which was full of change and just zipped by.

What do you see yourself doing 14 years from now?: blogging…and more blogging
Wait a minute! 14 yrs from now, did you say….? does some quick calculations…adjusts her retina to peer into the future……..THUD!!!! *faints on not recognizing the images of two strapping 25 yr-old and 20 yr-old hunks towering above her.

and now to exercise the perks of tagging...

gazal, joy, preethi (incessant musings) and pink dogwood...your memories please

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

My book marks....

Ever since i read that Joy believes in a smack to get things working, i've been in a rush to finish this tag...lest she sends those virtual smacks my way :P

This, Joy, is one affair i would love to remember...:)

1. Do you remember how you developed a love for reading?

My dad! He would take us to libraries and gift us books…and enid blyton for the simple and fun world she took us to…

2. What are some books you read as a child?

as a young girl, this funny fellow used to be a great favorite.

Aesop’s fables, most books by Enid blyton, most classics – mark twain, charles dickens, jane austen, Emily bronte, daphne du maurier…most comics – mandrake, tintin, asterix, mad, amarchitra katha

3. What is your favorite genre?

Sometimes humor, sometimes satire, sometimes mystery, recently inspirational…haven’t been able to veer towards the science-oriented ones

4. Do you have a favorite novel?

No. Favorites have ranged from Oliver twist to Scarlett Pimpernel to Emma to anne frank to Kite runner…

5. Where do you usually read?

Anytime, anyplace…just give me some peace and quiet…

6. Do you usually have more than one book you are reading at a time?

Oh Yes! One for every mood!

7. Do you read nonfiction in a different way or place than you read fiction?

8. Do you buy most of the books you read, or borrow them, or check them out of the library?

Have done all…it doesn’t matter as long as I get the book… i would prefer to own the books i really liked

9. Do you keep most of the books you buy? If not, what do you do with them?


10. If you have children, what are some of the favorite books you have shared with them? Were they some of the same ones you read as a child?

I read somewhere that good children's literature is one which appeals not only to the child in the adult, but to the adult in the child. In my son's case, he’s graduated from Enid blyton to Sherlock holmes, Feluda, oliver twist, roald Dahl…Some were new finds – harry potter, eragon, the septimus heap trilogy, the Narnia chronicles – which we enjoyed together… I’m now waiting for the younger one to join us…

12. What are you reading now?
Does trying to read my boys minds count?!!!

No? Fine then!!! Chowringee, the Blind assassin by margaret Atwood and daughter by asha bandele

13. Do you keep a TBR (to be read) list?

A mental list, thanks to all the reviews, and book tags that I read.

14. What books would you like to reread?
Calvin and Hobbes… an instant mood uplifter :)

15. Who are your favorite authors?

Keeps changing. There was a time when Agatha Christie and RK Narayan ruled supreme. It’s been an interesting journey since then.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

a little bit of tradition!

It is that time of the year again! The time of the year when I yearn most for home. It starts with Ganesh Chaturthi and lingers on till after Diwali. This is the time that the memories flood me, and i see a flashback of events generally forgotten in the hustle bustle of what we call life.

- of getting up on festival days and listening to the reassuring clatter of vessels in the kitchen. Of oil baths and visits to temples. Of visits to the grandparents where we would seek the blessings of the elders present. Of the vibrant colors of the rangoli and the heady fragrance of the jasmine flowers...and of course the food. Of smells taking my olfactory senses for an aromatic drive. of stomachs being put to their ultimate test of capacity...of eating my grandma's lunch..(My grandmother would always equate love and food and it showed in every morsel that entered our mouths.)

These are memories of laughter and love, of beliefs and prayers, of events and impressions, of bonding and a sense of belonging.

Of course things have changed a lot now. We do as we please, we wake up when we want, we are masters of our day, we believe in ourselves. The 11 yr old is very astute and does not believe in God as much as he used to when he was 3. I would like to think it's because we've taken care of his emotional needs that he does not feel the need to turn to someone...

Coming back to the festival, yesterday was Dussehra...and i thought i should get in touch with the traditional side of me. So in a bid to indulge the nostalgic homesick child in me, i cooked a traditional meal...which "included" kadubus (we grew up on idlies steamed in those special jack fruit leaf moulds)with yogurt based curry, rasa vada and a payasam...for a family of 4.

The offering to the deity done, the table is set, a pleased dad and a satisfied mom look at the spread proudly...

only to hear two disappointed voices...'you made glass idlies? are we going to eat this? no pasta?!!!" the pitch increasing with every discovery...

and then a resigned 'sigh...can i at least eat it with ketchup!!!"

And every time i try to recreate that bit of magic, I wonder, is it time for me to set aside my memories and continue making theirs?

but no way are you, my dear kiddos, getting pasta on a festival day!!!

and yes, hope you all out there had a great dussehra.

retrospect:: this is just a rough attempt to pen down a state of mind...i agree that the onus is on me to put as much or as little, of tradition in my day...

Monday, October 6, 2008

A day of my choice - tag

One day, Weather girl called me...

Now i like weather girl because she's so fickle minded..she just cannot make up her mind on what weather she wants...One day she decides it’s going to be sunny and bright and just when all those clothes have been aired out to dry, across she sends those angry clouds and watches gleefully as the orchestrated movement starts below...people running helter-skelter, umbrellas being popped open and children being herded indoors... At least that's what happens in the first grumble from the sky, we see maids popping in and out every balcony peering above, and gathering laundry in and out.

Don't you think, the weather is an icebreaker, mood turner and perfect punching bag in addition to being the most overused topic?

And so weather girl said, “today I’m feeling lazy! Can you manage the weather for me today?

"Sure" i said "how do i do that?"

"Take this pencil and draw your weather on this white screen, next point to the’s that easy...

I looked at the screen and saw a white canvas...begging to be filled...I drew inverted V's for mountains, a semicircle for a cheery sun half hidden behind a cloud, birds in the sky and cottony clouds...I drew light drops of rain…and then I turned the globe and pointed to Singapore…

Okay wake up guys...this was imagination working overtime...let's leave weather girl to her whims and my imagination and get on with the tag, passed on by ~nm...

If i were to be a day, i would go for the one where there is a hint of rain in the clouds, a rainy day where the raindrops fall softly on your cheek and tease you…a day where the kids can splash about without their mothers worrying about them catching cold...

And since I’m greedy, i would also like to be that day in October in Delhi when there is that delicious nip in the air which tells you winter's coming. I really enjoyed my pre-winters in Delhi…(not the bitingly cold one where you wish the toilet seats came pre-warmed and where your words are frozen in your throat).

I miss those women knitting sweaters everywhere you go, people basking in the warm winter sun…the jackets and the shoes, the tip of your nose feeling cold faster than the rest of you, the wonder in your child’s voice when his warm breath creates that little illusion of smoke…the attraction towards heat and warmth in every form… i am referring to hot cups of tea ;)

So I’m a sunny day - wanting to be rainy-also wanting it to be nippy - kinda person...(sounds a bit like my moods). now tell me, what season are you?

And since it’s a tag, specifically Sumana, abha, gauri, neera...let's see the seasons in you...

Psst...but guess what, the sky is grumbling, the clouds have its going to be my kind of day after all...itz chai time here... :D

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Exam? what exam?...

It sure is a busy week at my house. I'm super hyper, like i'm on a taut string and a little touch will send me spiralling into the air. Exams always does this to me. The 11 yrold on the other hand is as cool as a frozen ice lolly. As far as he's concerned, its just another thing cooked up to make sure he has a rotten week. He's still reading his storybooks and decorating an arsenal timetable like he's arsenal's manager. For the uninitiated it's not weaponry but soccer...yeah...I've added the much hyped soccer-mum hat to the various other hats i wear...

Coming back to exams, I remember this history teacher in school. She was BORING!!!! and unfortunately believed that quantity is directly proportional to quality. Which meant that the longer the answers, the more the marks. So once i figured that out, it was pretty easy. The 11 yrold on the other hand is a master at brevity. He can condense a page into 5 lines. His speed-reading skills came to light when he read 5 chapters in 15 minutes. Algebra is scoffed at...the whole idea of x and y being in equations is silly...steps are skipped because 'i know it, she knows it, why the hell should i write it down"?

and yes, we have the conveniently censored expletive, "What The!!!!" going on right now....

I sympathise with him thoroughly when he complains ...Luckily for him, he's intelligent and has been getting good grades solely on what he remembers from the classes...which will not last him long. Maths needs practice and he's not too convinced about it. Besides, what is he going to do with 100%?!!!!(yes, we never fall short on confidence)

We've told him that we really don't mind the grades...what matters is that he works hard and shows some discipline in coming up with a time table and not keeping everything till the last minute....Right now, he's as receptive as the wall except when he tells me to chill!!! Still i live on eternal hope :)

The younger one on the other hand never lets me down, as far as learning goes. He has just learned about the middle finger...and the myriad expressions it brings on....He saw an 8yrold showing it, and other kids going gaga over it ' ... he patiently folds his four fingers and proceeds to show me the middle finger!

sigh...Ahhh! well, when you can't fight them, join them..i showed him how to use those fingers to make a camera....Hopefully he's going to be better occupied in school today...

and now biting my fingers...errr nails... wondering when this tune will hit my house soon?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ain't that loverly?

You know the times when nostalgia grips you and threatens to throttle you and you end up replaying the "those were the good old days" record? You don't? then you are too must be old enough to get a nostalgia me...

you do? good...let's get started. So i had an attack of the good old movies syndrome and i reminsced about the good old movies that we used to watch. The days of "Gods must be crazy", shammi kapoor's twists and the musicals, Sound of music and "My fair lady'...

so coming back to the movie, a well meaning friend had presented my boys with this dvd and the not-so-well meaning boy had pushed it way out of sight. The other day when i was digging into their dvd pile, i found Sound of Music buried under the harry potter, jurassic park, King Kong and chocolate factory movies.

So there it was, unopened and ignored. Memories of childhood came surging through...I mean, who has not heard "Do re mi' and sung "these are a few of my fav things' in school. My kids have been taught this in school as well. So I invited the boys to watch it with me...after all this was an experience to be cherished right?

After 5 minutes: the 11 yr-old said.."can i read a book? If you want i'll read it here (BIG favor!!!!) one wicket down...

the soon-to-be 6 yrold decided to give me a chance...

After Song #1 the boy asked me if Mr. superhero makes his apeearance now...

Song #2 passed by with him demanding some magic at least...

A still beaming (and gritting my teeth on the inside) me explained why maria now has to go work for a captain with 7 children...and the third song started...where she is singing on her way to the captain's does have songs...its a musical!!!

2 lines into the song, the little voice puts in his two dollars worth " you know, i think she should stop singing and go , she's going to get late if she's always singing"

a smirk from the hubby completed the experience...

for the record i still watched it, songs and all...and the l'il one gave me comnpay, never mind if he fell asleep 20 minutes into the movie...

bah! What do these kids know about movies, other than special effects and spandex clad superheroes...!!and so much for my instilling some movie sense into them...hmpppf!! they want magic? i plan to unleash Mary Poppins on them ...

i need solidarity here...does anyone else like these movies?

and on a funny note...someone sent this to me...allegedly sung by Julie Andrews on her 69th birthday..i use the word allegedly, 'cos i cannot find any concrete evidence of her singing this..neverthless its funny...

Maalox and nose drops and needles for knitting,
Walkers and handrails and new dental fittings,
Bundles of magazines tied up in string,
These are a few of my favorite things.

Cadillacs and cataracts and hearing aids and glasses,
Polident and Fixodent and false teeth in glasses,
Pacemakers, golf carts and porches with swings,
These are a few of my favorite things.

When the pipes leak,
When the bones creak,
When the knees go bad,
I simply remember my favorite things,

And then I don’t feel so bad.
Hot tea and crumpets and corn pads for bunions,
No spicy hot food or food cooked with onions,
Bathrobes and heating pads and hot meals they bring,
These are a few of my favorite things.

Back pains, confused brains, and no fear of sinnin’,
Thin bones and fractures and hair that is thinnin’,
And we won’t mention our short shrunken frames,
When we remember our favorite things.

When the joints ache,
When the hips break,
When the eyes grow dim,
Then I remember the great life I’ve had,
And then I don’t feel so bad.

ta-da!!!Now go sing "The rain in spain"

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I definitely used to read more when i was in school and college...Now of course, i do more of reading text books and my 6yr-old's library books...and err...blogs

-xh tagged me light years ago on here it is...

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read.
3) Underline the books you really love (and strikethrough the ones you hate!).(this i don't know how to i'm not..)
4) Reprint this list in your own blog.

so here's the list someone else has so patiently compiled...(half of what i have read is missing from this list :P)

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee

6 The Bible -parts of it
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell

9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy

13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare (most of them)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen

35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini

38 Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown

43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy

48 The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth

56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas

66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones's Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett

74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker (saw the movie)
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte's Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton

91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Currently reading "the japanese wife"

of the lot above, would want to try reading hitchhiker's guide and time traveller's wife..any other recommendations? I have so many that i've not yet read :(

I had covered most of the above, when i was in school...Some i've hidden in between my study books and read... Quite a few, i wish i had waited and read later to fully appreciate the writing....

Is there a proper age and time to read certain books to interpret it in the right way? What do you think?

and..and... i tag joy, gazal,and prats...and anyone else who wants to take this up...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Its raining 'friends',

pic grabbed from preethi's blog

What's life without friends, right? Right!!!

I've sat on this for almost a week, formulating things in my mind about how I wanted to say this...but then i realised a heartfelt 'Thank You' is what i want to say right now. There have been many times when you all have been instrumental in bringing the smile back on my face. Thank you for that too.

The honest, transparent and pretty, young bloggers, Keshi and Rayshma gave me this gold card to pass on...

a card which says "Blogging friends forever" acknowledgement of virtual palship and i'm happy to have found friends in you too.

And would i be too demanding if i give this to

each and everyone of you who make it a point to come here, read, and leave those lovely comments. Do pass it on

(sorry guys, its not a badge but a gold card...blame it on excitement? thanks ~nm)

Another 'OMG' moment

This is what they've been recorded saying about me:

Preethi : "...Her blogs are dipped in reality and humor. ..."

Neera: '... It shows that she is one cool mom her kids are lucky to have."

Mama-Mia: "I WISH I could be that sensible and level headed..."

It's not everyday that someone calls me cool, sensible,etc. so i'm going to make the most of it :D

and this is what i would love to say about them

Preethi's totally in her element right now ( Midlife crisis?!!!, cheeky's attitude and the laughing Gods notwithstanding)...her blog is just like her, full of life, and a treat to read

I love Neera's attitude, her kids, her honest posts, her kid updates and her template. Her blog makes my day...

Mama mia's famous for her radiant 1000 watt smile, and her cubby who takes after her. esp in the beam and cuteness factor. Her optimism is contagious and i love the feel-good factor of her blog.

And these extremely sane and beautiful mothers of equally adorable kids, have decided to pass on this diamond of brilliance to moi...
Merci beaucoup, Preethi, Neera and Abha...It means a lot to me. It is a great feeling when people identify with your ravings and musings. It is also a great feeling to be read and appreciated. Its not a great feeling though when i fall short of words to express how i feel...

In the tradition of this tag, i pass this on to

Prats: Of emotional ecology: A year back, I chanced on Prats' blog and i was hooked!! and thus came into being aalochane...

Tys: He makes you smile, he makes you think. And he writes awfully well too :D. I do wish he would compile his posts into a book one day. and ...did i tell you? his story blog is a must-read.

Ps: She practises what she says...and her blog is one of the reasons she's looking forward to a huge moment in her life - her first book "34 bubblegums and candies'' (click on the pic in the side bar to learn more).

Keith: One of my favorite bloggers. Poems, short stories, visuals, musings - you will find them all here.

Madhumita: a petite superwoman who manages to squeeze 36 hours into her day, what with her babies and her work and her social service...:D

Ziah:: laughter unlimited...need i say more!!! yes!! She's also beauty with brains :D

manuscrypts: A man of 55 words and more, and my, does he get his points across!!!

psst..To the nosy lady who lives 3 blocks away, and who finds it difficult to believe that i cannot spare time for her kitty party, i also blog among the other inconsequential things i do!!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Some rain, six windows and a thought

It rained and how!!! Here in Singapore, we live on the 12th floor and every time it rains, we have to close the windows so that the water does not get in. So one dark evening it rained, and I heard G say, Close windows...i was working on my laptop, I blinked, I frowned and I wondered why I should shut down my windows (my windows vista)...before the dim bulb brightened. I walked to the actual window and latched it shut… (sheesh!!!)

And of course, that was enough to get me thinking...:D

So now we live in a world where windows are what you use on the computer. Closing windows has never been this easy. Icons are no longer Mahatma Gandhi or Martin Luther king but those cute little miniatures on your desk top. How uninspiring!

The mouse is lamenting its loss of identity from the cute Tom tormentor to the slick one crawling on the desk. Bugs and viruses ail your computer too and the therapy is not a good drowning of smelly spray but some heavy dose of code. The worm has also made its appearance, where true to its nature, it slithers its way through the firewalls and security systems, creating havoc.

It's time not to bat an eyelid when your ten yr-old wants to burn his CD himself but ask him to do one for you too. (The shocked look on his 5 yr-old brother was priceless!!). My son is amazed that I grew up in a world without computers and mobiles. A world without Neopets and FIFA 2008 - IMPOSSIBLE!! (those are his favorite games)!! Meanwhile, someone please do explain to me why anyone would want to play a soccer game on the computer?

Friends were first segregated into best friends and friends. Next came the popular sitcom "FRIENDS" about the lives of 6, err...friends. Finally, we have 'frenship', which is highly endorsed by the social networking sites. This sure is an instant age - instant food, instant messages, instant pals...If someone were to be introduced as a friend, it’s only natural to ask "Blog friend, virtual friend, orkut friend, or ? friend? Never did I think the day would arrive when there would be so many definitions of a friend...though i must add here, i have met quite a few good people online and we've hit it off instantaneously...lucky me!!!

Web cams and Instant messengers have just brought the world into your home. Grandparents can catch a first smile, the first step, a milestone being conquered without moving a step. Bonds are tightened and the distance shortened with a click. Being in touch has never been this simple. If only we could feel as well!

In retrospect, good thing too, otherwise people would stop stepping out of their homes…:(

Ironic too, that what was invented to give us more mobility, security and time is proving to be just the opposite. The miles have been shortened but has it actually managed to bridge the distance between people? There are times when you have to message the person sitting next to you at work!!!

The web is wide indeed! No corner is inaccessible, it's just a click away...Just make sure you do not get entangled in it, and do scare away those lurking spiders who reside, disguised as internet trolls and worse.

And yes, don't be surprised when you are old, and your grandchildren look at you and say "Oh my mouse!" (That’s the future equivalent of Oh my god! since that’s how the future may soon view their God.. :P)

Hail, the mighty mouse!! might as well get used to it, I see an obsequious attitude to this slick creature in my house..

(Psst...about the disoriented baring of the thought, that's what happens when you sweep away cobwebs in the mind..., besides, i'm too busy wasting time shutting and opening windows to pay particular attention)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The need for a want...

My son's almost 11 and if i ignore his temper surges, still very much a baby, innocent and impressionable. His birthday is approaching soon, and we asked him what he wanted as a present, (a temporary lapse in sanity prompted us to ask him if he wanted a PSP, or Wii), he said NO to both. I was quite surprised!

He's most happy if you take him for a game of soccer or cricket, delirious if someone can kick ball with him all day. Those are the moments when i see the beautiful bonding between the two brothers, the natural ease with which the elder teaches the younger how to kick, how to bowl. Those are the memories which sustain me when they are at each other's throats, usually triggered by trivial matters.

He has been to friends' houses where everything is grand, cupboards overpacked with gizmos and unlimited pepsi/cocacola, in other words, a different life style from what he's used to. He's been to houses too, where it's been the opposite, low on frills but high on fun, quite like the much hyped about 'middle class' experience. He's always come back raving about the time he spent with his friends, whether it was the playstation or the game of soccer they played, never the inequality of it all.

When we moved to Singapore, we gave up a lot (wrt the support system) in delhi, our help, the driver and our cars. In Delhi, it was a constant effort to insulate the boys against the 'showing off' culture that the city is known for. It is so easy to get swayed away by affluence. There was an instance of a colleague buying a bigger car because his son was ashamed of the smaller one. Since when has contentment been measured with money? And what will happen when the money dries up?

In Singapore, we've opted not to take a car, because the public transport is one of the best in the world. Here we walk, we cycle, we take the local train,the bus or the cab, sometimes even all three, to reach our destination. Initially the kids had problems coming to terms with the forced walking, coming as they did from their chaperoned life where they had been chauffered everywhere. If you've lived in Delhi, you would know that the public transport is apalling not to mention the safety issues of sending children alone anywhere.

There were times, here, when Swaraj would ask why we didn't have a car. We would explain to him, about what he's been studying in school, about global warming, about the excellent infrastructure Singapore has to offer, about the need for it. There are times he doesn't understand, and just accepts it as a quirk of ours. But he accepts, which i feel is a big step forward.

It worries me when i see children his age, cushioned against the disappointments of life. I've seen them getting everything on a platter, and it scares me that the parents, in their bid to give them the best, are spoiling them silly. The new mantra seems to be, if you can afford it, then you must have it. The line between needing and wanting seems to be getting merged.

The 5 yr-old has a t-shirt which reads

"saw it, wanted it, threw a fit, got it!!!"

funny, because if he were to throw a fit, he would have definitely got it, a sound verbal thrashing :D

It is difficult to deny your kids something, but i realise the importance of saying no. I believe in what i've been told when growing up, of learning to handle little disappointments so that you are better at handling life's bigger challenges. Of using middles class ways of building up resilience and character. Of learning to want something bad enough to work for it. Even with all this, my mother feels that we've been bringing them up easy. Sometimes the effort seems tiring, going through all the arguments just to prepare him for something he has no clue about. Sometimes it's so easy to give in....

Till now Swaraj has been delightfully simple, happy with his sports activities and his allocated computer time. But it's getting increasingly difficult to strike a sane balance between needs and wants. Of knowing the difference between the two...of wanting him to know that whatever we own is the result of hard work and self denial...of wanting him to know about the value of money, the value of his soccer coaching, of wanting him not to take everything and everybody for granted, and of wanting him to know that value does not always mean money.

Whoever said parenting was easy? The difficulty level sure increases with their age!!! and I hope i pass, each time...:D

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

What was I reading?!!!

It's been two weeks since i've come back to Singapore...The kids have settled back into their routine remarkably, the husband is thrilled to come back to a noisy home and i'm still in the 'I miss everyone' mood...

So what better time than this to finish 'THE' book tag, pinned on me by Preethi of incessant musings. This tag has been appearing on everyone's blog of late, and of course as usual i'm doing it verrry late. Considering I had a few earth shattering issues to handle (READ THAT AS SETTLING BACK TO SCHOOL ROUTINE AND YELLING MY LUNGS OUT!!!), i think preethi is going to forgive me here...

The tag reads, list out my top ten literary characters... I wish it was authors, because if a chracter has managed to speak to you, it is clearly the writer's magic working there..because it is so difficult to envisage various characters and bring them to life with words...

And so i delved into the recesses of my mind to discover those characters who i fell in love with when i was in school....It was at school where i was also exposed to shakespeare and the other classics (we had a wonderful english teacher)

1. Rebellious Jo from "Little Women" by Louis May Alcott ...
I found so much in common with this spirited girl. She remains my favorite girl...

2. Carefree Huck Finn from the Adventures of Huckle berry Finn by Mark Twain...

He surely did take me on a roller coaster ride right from his escape from his drunk father to the adventures shared with his friend Tom Sawyer...

3. Allan Quatermain from King Solomon's Mines by Sir H Rider Haggard...

Did you know the novel was the consequence of a one pound bet? Haggard's brother claimed that he would not be able to write a novel half as good as Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island. But Haggard did ,taking readers like me on a complete adventure trip filled with drama, murder and a treasure hunt...

The indomitable Sherlock Holmes and the very likeable Hercule Poirot...

hats off to these two gentlemen for their extremely unique ways of ensuring that my leisure hours were satisfactorily occupied. I remember being gifted a volume of "The Adventures of sherlock Holmes" and devouring it from page to page,my admiration for the detective growing immensely with each mystery he solved... As for the Belgian detective, i love him..and my mission was to read everyone of Agatha Christie's books by hook or crook, exam or no exam...which i achieved soon enough...

5. The "villain'of Wuthering Heights...the vengeful Heathcliff...

i should be hating him but oh what's forbidden did seem so alluring especially to a young mind....

6. Tom from Uncle Tom's cabin...

i read this when i was perhaps in class 5.. it dealt with slavery and racism...

7. The unnamed narrator in 'Rebecca' by Daphne Du Maurier...and Jane of Jane Eyre

8. Perry Mason...

another dashing man and a defense attorney to's been ages since i read an earl stanley gardner!!!

9. Kabuliwalla by Rabindranath Tagore.

Needs no introduction and brings a lump into my throat everytime I read it

10. Of course the Secret Seven and Famous Five,

who enlivened many a bored day with their adventures and delicious scones...I used to always be 'hungry' after reading one of Enid Blyton's books...

11. The absentminded Lord Emsworth, the sly Jeeves and the comic Bertie Wooster...

Bring on the smiles...:)

12. Meggie Cleary in the Thorn Birds...

and her journey into love and out of it...

a special mention about the adorable Calvin who makes so much sense as long as it is not my son saying that :P many more to write and already 14 characters written down...

I'm ending this reluctantly...and i loved doing this, because this brought back many fond memories...

Now to pass on the tag...

Sumana, Romila, Rayshma, WIAN, JLT...

Who's your favourite?

Monday, July 7, 2008

tag time!

Sometime back, (actually a long time ago) xh and neera had tagged me on the 10 things I miss right now, and the things I would want to do within the next 10 years...

I miss,

1. The twins (my 3-yr-old adorable, cuddable, kannada-with-an american twang- spouting nephew and niece)

2. The Bangalore traffic...(that's when i used to catch up with my friends)

3. Everybody in bangalore...sigh..

4. The divine chocolate desserts ...double sigh

I'm sure i should be missing more but what can you expect? i've just returned from vacation!!!

From the thousand odd things that i hope to do in the immediate future, I must

1. learn pottery...

2. practise meditation regularly...(telling my hyper mind to as difficult as expecting my boys to be still)

3. manage my temper...(a losing battle?)

4. stop featuring in Prats Feedjit list as a permanent visitor, because ever since my blog list vanished, i've been using her blog list to access my blog pals...and all it says is "Singapore arrived " some 10 times on her mortifying!!!
:(...Either i stop reading my blogs and or i make my own list...sigh, I must sit and rectify that list...

5. be more thickskinned...(sensitivity is hazardous to mental health...)

6. be more time efficient

7. get my priorities right...checking my mail should really be the second thing i do in the morning, not the first...

Looks like i'm quite content with my life will take a week of boredom to kick start things and make me peer into that list...meanwhile I've written on this before ....take a peek here. Gosh!!! Time is running out!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

That's what was happening in my life right now...pause...and play, pause and play ...

Savoring the moments of leisure, enjoying that cuppa with my sister in the cool early morning breeze, when the kid brigade are in dreamland, leaving their mothers to catch up... getting fattened up with all that love...but now, that the vacation is officially over, it seems the weeks have zipped past...

It's now time to leave and however long i stay, it's never enough...There is always something you have left undone, there is always something more to be said, there is that urge to freeze a few moments because they are so precious...

The bloggies in Bangalore have decided to meet too...after i leave...xh and gazal - you are on my hitlist right now... :D. Seriously though, that was a great initiative by you guys and hope you have a great time matching the faces to the thoughts.

I did meet Prats, Ziah and Madhumita. It was wonderful meeting them finally because i've been interacting with them for a while and i love reading their blogs so much. I wish i could have met the other bloggers i spoke to, but in bangalore, my time is never my own...and of course the rest of the world works when i am free...:)

Sigh back to the packing...i wish i could turn the clock back by a few days, before we get back to the routine of packed lunches and strained vocal cords...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

I'm alive!!

So I'm finally in the land of boiled beans...and being persistently fattened up...and for now at least i'm loving it! :)

The flight was surprisingly peaceful except for a slightly high on sugar neighbor, who suddenly started drumming his fingers vigorously on his thighs, in sync with the in cabin music!!! My 10 yr-old sitting next to him was NOT amused...i was petrified even to look in his direction lest he give me and junior lessons...Phew!!

Junior was too busy with the inflight entertainment to bother about mundane issues like falling planes and cotton like clouds...and drumming musicians(thank god!!)

The boys have adopted my sister leaving me relatively free to get lost on the streets of Bangalore. The mind too has taken a pretty long stroll and i'm waiting for it to get back to resume active blogging.

As for the wrong instructions (see last post), looks like G has wisened up...he made me do a dry run of the washing machine before i left...dang!! there goes my revenge!!!

Do roll out the red carpet for me, i should be making an appearance at your blogs soon...

tada ...


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

doodle -do

So, i'm packing and weighing, packing and weighing, packing and...sigh (i also noticed that my weight has increased)

G thinks i'm packing the whole house...grrr...for the record, i'm not!!!

i'm excited and not excited...

excited because i'm going to be meeting my parents, sisters, grandparents, all those lil ones who call me chikki (the hipper version for chikkamma) my friends, the relatives, their relatives, the neighbors, their children, ...Besides this is my annual break, and the kids go as devils and come back angelic, which sustains me for the next 6 months..

not so excited: cos i'm going to miss my home,.... i'm worried what will happen to the house when i'm gone...guys never realise even when they are ankle deep in dust...(you get the picture?)...imagine in six weeks , my house will be a parasatical paradise of spiders, fungi, dust mites, have i missed anything here?

...err..okay, okay ... the real reason is i'm really going to miss G.

He won't be coming with me now, maybe later....i'm so upset that i've left wrong instructions on how to operate the gadgets in the house, esp the washing machine...which means he will have to call me up to make it work...ahh sweet revenge!!!


an update here:: of course i'm exaggerating about the dust...though G's interpretation of dust is slighlty questionable, still he keeps the house reasonably clean...I'm impeccably clean, he's normal...and not to worry about the wrong instructions, nothing serious...but enough to make him miss me!!! (*grin)

see what i found here - a doodle 4 google contest.

american kids from kindergarten to grade 12 were asked to doodle around the theme 'what if". I found their ideas very innovative. Some used recycling as a theme, some world peace...

i especially loved the kindergarten illustrations, even though they are not exactly doodles ...take a look at these...

this child wrote...I think that the whole world would be happier if they rocked out to the music they love.

happy doodling and wish me a quiet journey...The last time we flew, my 5 yr-old yelled 'what happens if the plane falls into the clouds"...

Considering he always speaks his mind ....(click if you want to read more),i guess this trip is going to be quite interesting!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

It's a lovely day!!!

The eyes are tired, the mind is numb, the senses have taken a beating and nobody understands me!

i'm also drained out, courtesy the stress generated by some late nights.

finishing my mag work...if you must know...!!!

Then of course its very easy to get stressed out, because i've embarked on a very heroic for goody bags for my India trip. (i'm so looking forward to it)...did i tell you that i hate too much shopping....? no? well i do!!! esp when you have to get something for everyone and you hope you've not left out anyone. Then of course they have to like it too...

Prats, when asked whether she needed anything, told me "nothing, you just get yourself!!" that's so very sweet of her!!! Btw, many seem to be telling this to me recently, either my taste in gifts suck, or else they all really like me :)

Coming back to the red eyes, i have a cold...quite a bad one...'a sky fallen on the head' kind...the 'nobody understands me when i speak' kind...


i can write though...

because between yesterday and now, quite a few "awww' moments have happened...

Yesterday, on his return from school, my 5 yrold narrated the poem of the day, which initially left me perplexed...and then made me laugh. (click on the cloured words if you want to hear more)

His stories over, his lil tummy filled, he then focussed all the sneezes, he looked at me and said "you sleep...i'll do all the work today...don't worry..."

five minutes later, he comes up to me and whispers "you will have to do the cooking though, i don't know that"!!!

He is such a sweetie pie...i wish he'd remain 5, a lil longer...sigh...

of course he then went down to play, and didn't turn up till much later...but his words acted as instant therapy...and it carried me through the evening.

Woke up this morning late and with a heavy head, and found the kids' milk, fruits, cereal all ready on the table (that's what i do usually every morning) and a piping hot cup of ginger tea...courtesy G...i just had to pack the lunch boxes...isn't G a darling?

Walked the kids to their busstop, waved goodbye till i could see the bus no more(i have never missed that)and came home to find my friend 'S' from the next block waiting at my door with some chatpata food...

how did she know? Turns out my lil boy had gone to her house in the evening, during play yesterday, to drink water...and had told her..."i don't want to disturb my mother..she's not well..." awww...

And S is really a gem of a person!!!I've known her for over 8 months, her kids are almost the same age as mine and we get along quite well, having even exchanged the mandatory dabbas of khana...

As i grow older, i see a change in me. I am friendly, yet i find that i don't go out of my way to invest in new friendships. I'm very happy with the ones i have. I don't keep in touch as much as i like to , but the friends i have, we seem to take up from where we leave, always...

Yet slowly but surely, there have been a few who've entered that circle, like 'S'. Even a few in the blogworld too.

Reading preeti's post this morning had me nodding my head vigorously in agreement. She so spoke my mind, and did a very good job of it too...
(the nodding also helped in clearing the mess in my head and my blocked ears)......

and then prats took me on a lil nostalgia trip..with a song from dirty dancing...and some funky songs and classroom drama...instant therapy again...

It feels refreshing to be surrounded by all this goodness...

The day sure is lovely...even though i'm going to spend it sneezing and aiming tissues at the bin all day long!!

Forgive the disorientation in thoughts...sneezing does that to me. all of you too...

Sunday, May 4, 2008

What do I do?

~nm tagged me long, long back on the first five things i do when i get back home!!! You really want to know?

A scene especially when i return from the supermarket, lugging the grocery bag, a backpack, a mobile and my card case. Here in Singapore, i generally HAVE to HAVE an access card to enter my apartment block, my MRT link card to travel by the metro, and of course my debit card...

At my doorstep...

1. Spend 5 minutes hunting in all the pockets for the key...drat!!! where could that key be...? Dump all the grocery bags on the doormat and SEARCH...!!!!!

2. Discover it in the safest place possible...the l'il pocket at the back of the backpack!!!

3. Throw my footwear into the shoe rack, open the door, gather all that stuff lying on the floor and dump the stuff on the dining table.

4. Keep my handbag with the precious MRt card inside the drawer, wash away all taht invisble dirt from my feet and hands, and enter the kitchen to unload all that stuff into its various nooks and corners...(i so miss my gal Friday, back in delhi)

5. ...and then i remember to open the front door to retrieve the keys dangling there....and my cell phone waiting patiently for me on the shoe rack...

This surely is an improvement. There have been two occasions when the key has been left there since the morning and my son pounces on it on his return from school in the evening, and proceeds to give me an ear-ful!!!

(pic...courtesy wikipedia)

This is my sheepish momma look!!!

Seriously, how much can I possibly carry with two hands??

Psst...below is veenz tag...she entrusted me with spreading some love and cheer, which i've done!!! and with this my tag box is empty!!! :D

Adding links to the chain of love

Veenz tagged me with a chain of spreading love... I have alovely circle of blog pals so let me do my bit of spreading cheer.

Once tagged, you have to copy paste the link in this post, add your name and make them grow!

BennyLiew, RamblingMoo, Mum & Kids In Wonderland, Judelittle, Our mini blogsphere, Rooms in My Heart,, ChinNee, Jo-N, LadyJava's Lounge, Strange but True, Mariuca's Perfume Gallery,Meet Uncle J-Uncle J, Farah,aNgRiAniWoRLd,How’s Life Bout,The Three Heroes, Ceedy, Veena, Suma...

while i wish love everyone's way, I tag justjen, prats, keshi, romila, sumana, hipgrandma, preethi, koolkat, aarthi, wian

Thursday, April 24, 2008

tagging the me-me!!

JLT passed on this tag to me...

Know me better!!!

Last Movie You Saw In A Theater:

Last movie? Jodhaa Akbar!!! Finally something I watched without the children…without G...but ...with my in-laws. (ma-in-law had been wanting to watch and i had heard a lot of the 'abs'solutely fabulous hrithik...) G decided to be the perfect husband and spent an evening with the children, while I brushed up on my Mughal history. Of course, my need to see hrithik was greater than his!! The movie was memorable for two reasons...hrithik was 'abs'olutely droolworthy and my mom-in-law had superb timing…just when the abs scene flashed, she decided to update my knowledge in history...wah!!!

What Book Are You Reading:
Reading Thorn Birds...again...(a visit to the library is due)!!!

Favorite Board Game:
Scrabble. And kaleidoscope…(its actually a puzzle board game and verrrry addictive…)

Favorite Magazine:
everything and nothing in particular…but yes love reading Reader's digest...femina...newsweek...etc

Favorite Smells:
cool rain on scorching earth, the aroma of freshly baked biscuits, the smell of babies, the fragrance of flowers (jasmine)

Favorite Sound:
waves hitting the shore, the sounds of laughter, the word “Amma”, the birds chirping

Worst Feeling In The World:
the feeling of helplessness in situations beyond my control!!!

What Is The First Thing You Think Of When You Wake? ::
OMG!!! Is that the time? Already?!!!!

Favorite Fast Food Place::
those serving Chaat…

Future Child's Name:
I’m going to have another child??? when? :D

Finish This Statement. "If I Had A Lot Of Money I'd...”::
the thing is i'm never going to have a lot of money...both G and i spend too much esp on others...

Do You Drive Fast? ::
I don’t drive :(

Do You Sleep With A Stuffed Animal?::
No!! not unless G counts as one…

Storms-Cool Or Scary? ::
Super cool when inside, safe and sound

What Was Your First Car?
An 118NE

Favourite drink: ::
Water…and masala tea

Finish This Statement, "If I Had The Time I Would .....” ::
Paint, watch a few movies, learn a few skills!!!

Do You Eat The Stems On Broccoli?::
Yes…yes…and yes!

If You Could Dye Your Hair Any Color, What Would Be Your Choice? :: Auburn

Name All The Different Cities/Towns You Have Lived In.
Delhi, Pune, Chennai ,Bangalore, Indore, Bhopal, Kolkata, Singapore (i had forgotten to add my current place...thanks to shruthi, it is now rectified)

Favorite Sports To Watch:
Tennis, gymanstics

One Nice Thing About The Person Who Sent This To You:
smart and witty …she’s 'just like that'!!! And you cannot help but just ‘like’ her!!

What's Under Your Bed?
My slippery slippers…

Would You Like To Be Born As Yourself Again?
Definitely!!! With a little more spice and less sugar!!!

Morning Person Or Night Owl?
As long as morning is not before 6’oclock..then yes, a morning person

Over Easy Or Sunny Side Up?

Favorite Place To Relax:
During vacation time, my bath room…other sane times, the library and my home

Favorite Pie:

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:
chocolate chip, and hot chocolate fudge sundae...

Of All The People You Tagged This To, Who's Most Likely To Respond First?
Joy…(*u better not let me down)
Prats, gazal, romila - prove me wrong, will you?

and of course i tagged prats, joy, gazal, romila