Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dear Santa


Dear Santa,

I know it is a little late and you and your elves are very busy arranging all those gifts, but you know it has been a few weeks since my woman friday went home and running after my little elves has been too much not just on my knees but everywhere.

Anyhow, this year I have decided not to be selfish and here is my list on behalf of millions of women and few hundred men across the globe..

1. New Age Home Cleaner
This is a machine somewhat similar to what we call a vacuum cleaner. You take it into a room, plug it in and leave. Go back after half an hour..voila..the bed is made, windows are dusted, curtains are drawn, mirrors are cleaned and the floor is sparkling clean

2. Mobile Washing Machine
Very compact, I should be able to move it from room to room with ease. Again, plug it in, put in the clothes...let it be for two hours. Go back to the room...the clothes are washed, dried, shampooed, conditioned, ironed and folded neatly. Ithink I'll be able to manage keeping it in the cupboards.
The machine requires no water and has herbal cleansers built into it

3. Sensory Curtains
These are curatins with dust and cobweb sensors. When the above washing machine comes into the room, these curtains beep just to let us know they are dirty. As soon as they sense the machine in the room ,they come down on their own. Put the curatins in, leave it for an hour and half....curtains are cleaned and kept near the respective windows. You switch on a tinly knob on the curtains and they are back in place

4. Corden Bleau Cooking Range

This is a very intelligent appliance. You can download recipes from the net on this. Select your recipe of choice for the day, put all the ingredients in the required qunatities, set the time and open when the time is up. Your dish is ready.

You see, the advantage is anyone can be a master chef. You don't have to sell your house and take a loan too to have five star dinner or lunch.

I should be able to manage with these four for 2011. Intelligent clothes, Automatic child awaking alarms, cars that run on water, etc etc can wait for another year.

Yours Truly,

A Very Harried Mother

p.s. A Merry Christmas to you all!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Relationships

Forgot my phone at home a few days back.
Son took a call, "Hello, my mother is not at home"
"Who are you?"
"I am my mother's son"


Brother had left his bike at home for a few days.
Father went to pick up son from Sunday school on the bike.
Son to his friend, "This is my father's brother-in-law's bike"

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Nostalgia 1

When you meet someone close after a long time, the now asleep memories of the good old days start waking up slowly and you go back years ....

I am lucky I should say, to call a place as home one of the 50 places you must see before you die, or so the National Geographic says - the backwaters of Alleppey, Kerala. We grew up in the town, but both sets of grandparents had their homes in the heart of Kuttanad


Most of you must have seen at least pictures of houseboats. Now imagine a much samller version of that - that was my grandmother's car. All the landed houses had these with a driver - the oarsman or the 'oonnukaaran' as they were called.
The most awaited time for us kids was the summer holidays, two months of absolute bliss, two grandmothers waiting with tins full of savories and sweets and hearts overflowing with love. The highlight of these two months was the 'Edathua Perunnaal '(festival in a 200 year old church in a village of Kerala, patron saint is St.George). My grandmother hailed from this place.
Summer holidays was the time when my grandmother - ammachi we called her - would embark on her yearly trip to see her mother and take part in the festival. And with her would be a troop of kids, her grandchildren. The memories of those trips are still so fresh in my mind.
The trip would start at about 9 in the morning, ammachi sitting at the front of the miniature houseboat, the kids inside, peeping through the tiny windows on both sides. These boats were a small version of the houseboats that you see now, but only half of the boat covered. And instead of a motor engine, there would be the oarsman who would either paddle or maneuver it skillfully with a long bamboo pole. The trip always started with a prayer.

We would drift pass houses on the way, cross rivers, see never ending lush fields, pass through canals, waving at people on both banks. Many of them would pass on their offerings to the church. Some of them knew my grandmother well and there were even a few relative's houses on the way.
We would also pass several churches on the way. Ammachi would make the boat stop for a few minutes at each and say prayers which were diligently repeated by the young brood. At noon, our 'driver' would stop somewhere, mostly under a tree and we would have the sumptuous lunch packed by my mother. Washing our hands and mouth in the river right from the boat was a big adventure for us.

Finally, we would reach her home at about five in the evening. Our cousins would be waiting for our arrival and we would jump right away into the river for an hour long bath and games. The next few days would be church in the morning and hogging and running around like monkeys at the innumerous relative's places.
The torrential summer showers would almost always accompany us on our way back, greeting us with thunder and lightning as we reached home. All of us would be huddled together under the cover of the boat with the poor 'oonnukaaran' drenched and furiously paddling away to reach as fast as possible.

And now, to think that today it takes 45 minutes to reach that place instead of a journey that took us alomost a day!

(all pictures courtesy google images)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Mood Today

Was feeling a little low after a medical report which said I was too sweet and then watched this video...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnBeeG-Gv-k&feature=related

Isn't she a joy to watch? I just love the total abandoned way she dances.
And the song...do I even have to say anything?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Take an 's' away

Son has been pestering us to rent the 'Fast and Furious' DVD. After the 100th reminder the same day, mother was violent,"You say that once more and you are not going to get it the next 12 months."

Silence for a minute...

"Amma, do you know what is Fast and Furious without an 's'?"

"What?"

"You"

(didn't get it? - Fat and Furious ;-) )

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Mea Culpa

Here is to you, Nancy, for shaking me out of my laziness - the tag on "My sins against Gender-Stereotypes"
1. You line up the world's sleekest, coolest cars against a sturdy SUV, without even a second look at the beauties, I'll go for the beast (I just love driving the one above to office , just to see the drooling looks of the guys there, ha ha. They respect me much more now).
2. I can get ready for a party in 10 minutes flat. I even beat my other half to it
3. My idea of a perfect holiday - A mountain trek, no frills, just the bare essentials and no civilization for miles around
4. I hate 'girly' perfumes. For me perfume = deo
5. I can wear the same dress to church, office, PTA meetings, parties, in short, just about anywhere
6. If someone tells me I cannot do something, well....they better beware
7. I love shopping alone
8. Favorite foot wear - sturdy, comfortable sandals. No dainty thin stilletoes for me, actually I am scared of them. If I could wear loafers to office, I would
9. My savings : In cash - almost nil, in kind - books, books and books
10. I guess it all started long ago - my favorite childhood pastime was climbing trees (used to imagine I was on 'The Faraway Tree'. Now is that a male or female trait?)
To pass it on - most of my blog pals have already taken this up. So here it goes to two very special guys:
Alexis - You haven't taken up a tag in a long time...
Mathew - Last time it was Poland, now where have you disappeared to?
Guys, just to warn you, if you don't take this up, you will be sentenced to 12 years in pink pants.


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Oh, the joys of being a mother.....

Son is learning to make sentences in Hindi.
Word -"komal". Instant reply, "Meri maa bahuth komal hein"
:-)

p.s.
Swaram - thanks for checking on me
Nancy - another trip? i am still paying for the one i took. get up and go to office, get back and sleep....you get the drift? it is your tag that prompted me out of inertia :-) thanks.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Remembering You



You came home from hostel one weekend and got to know that you are getting engaged the week after..
You had seen him once, and none in his family...
You obeyed your father, no questions asked, came into a house ruled by a strong matriarch..
You were so innocent, you believed everyone and everything...
You went through so much, but was never without a smile on your face..
Your hope was in your kids and when one left, you could never get over it...
You, who hadn't seen the world wished for your little ones to conquer it...
You, who had never graduated, insisted that your precious ones turn professionals...
You welcomed their friends, boys and girls alike, in a town known for being conservative...
You didn't stand in the way of the elder one when she wanted to settle first, and got the younger one married off, in a family where it was sacrilege..
You were the one everyone turned to, for everything..
You, the helpless,turned strong when crushed...
You knew what each one of us wanted to say without us uttering a word...
You, who took care of everyone, forgot to take care of yourself...
You left us alone and went off just like that...
You will remain in our hearts for ever....

(Dedicated to all daughters who have their mothers with them - love them all you can, pamper them to the core and be with them whenever you can, while you can. I am thankful that I could before it was too late)
p.s - Entered this for blogadda's mother's day contest. Thanks Uma for letting me know about this.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Sun n Surf

Dear J, I am so thankful that you forcefully put me on that 5.30 Pacific Surf Liner to San Diego instead of the 8.30 one. The breathtaking view of the rays of the setting sun on the sea is one that I am not going to forget in a long ,long time



At some places, you are so close to the sea that you feel you can touch it if you could just put your hands out..

There is a military base close by, choppers and fighter planes are a regular sight..



M&A took me to this beautiful place by the beach named Torrey Pine Trail. There are small trails throughout the hills and each one takes you to different views.
This is where you turn up from the main road to teh trails. You can see downtown San Diego in the distance


One of the trails take you here. The intricate carving like hillsides are the result of millions of years of erosion by wind and water..


Another trail takes you here...


And yet another one here...


Not happy at being disturbed from his siesta by the sun....


Stairway to heaven...


Hills have bloomed after the recent rains....


The cliffs are ideal for this, you can see a lot of them...

You can spend hours and hours here and still feel you haven't had enough

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

That's Life!!!

V pirouettes around everyones' desk singing,
"I am gonna paaarttyy everyday, I'm gonna dannnnciiing everyday, I'm gonna plaaaayyyy with my grandkids everyday.....I'm going vacaaaationinnng every month....."

G who was on the seat next to me on a train to San Diego, "I have to complete my homework"

Me,"What???!!!"

G,"I am learning moviemaking and editing and I go or Spanish classes every Friday. Haven't done my homework for tomorrow."
And he shows me a picture of a beautiful Carribean lady on his phone camera and says proudly,"That's my movie teacher"

V is 55 and retiring next month
G is 78 and retired from his family business 5 years back

That's life with a capital L if you ask me :-)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

That Moment in Life

When did he reach a point that he couldn't take it anymore?
What made him think things will never turn for the better?
Did he feel things will be alright for his loved ones after?
When did that darkest moment happen?
How did he reach there?
Wasn't there anything or anyone that could have helped him?
What made him think no one, not even God could make things change?
Was it always in him, or is it life that turned him over?
When did he stop thinking of others and only of him?
Was it on the spur of the moment or long planned?
Why didn't anyone see it coming?
When did he stop laughing and start brooding?
Did he really believe this is the end?
When and where are we going to get all the answers?

(Got to know last night that someone close to us, one who had the most awesome sense of humor, someone who used to enjoy life to the brim, tried to get away from everyone and everything two days back. I am in shock)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

More.....

Another view of the bridge..

A very brave one - right under the bridge....


Alcatraz from golden gate..


Just can't get over that ocean...


They protest and block roads here too..


and this is what they want...

all set ... in case something happens.....
sharing a light moment meanwhile...

watching from above too...


p.s. will be back with more interesting ones in a few days....






Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Half a day is all it took

The flight to San Francisco was early in the morning. For a few minutes I thought we were going to land on the water. The landing ground is so close to the bay, we see land just as the plane touches ground. Had just half a day to go around , so the next thing after checking in was to book me in for a city tour.

And half a day was all it took to fall in love....

Anywhere in the city you are never too far from the sea..


some of the streets are really steep, there is one which is so steep, there is no uphill traffic


Old and new ....the victorian houses built in the late 18oo's , the city in the back ground...


the city..


The (in)famous Alcatraz. It is not too far from the wharf commonly known as Fisherman's Wharf. Looking at it we feel the prisoners could easily swim across. It seems the temperature of the sea water is sub zero and the undercurrents are so strong that the swimmers will be pulled out to the open ocean

The Golden Gate Bridge....


you can see a number these out in the bay..

view down from the bridge

The Pacific Ocean.....
each side you look, the ocean takes a different colour, you just do not know where to look


the remnants of a bath hotel built early last century. sea water filled in the baths during high tides


a walk by the beach....


enjoying their evening in the sun in ice cold water. it seems the surfers here need to wear some sort of body suit to keep them so as not to freeze

we took a turn and I stopped breathing....well,almost.....


to be continued.....

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My boss dropped a bomb and I am not complaining :-)

9 PM yesterday :

Boss - "Bindu, please come to my room immediately"

Bindu (to herself) - "Now what did I do?"

Boss - "S can't travel. His father is ill. Can you?"

Bindu (almost falling from the chair) - "You mean, this Saturday?"

Boss - "Yes, you know what the plans are"

Bindu (stammering) - "That is just four days, husband, kids, current projects..."

Boss - "Think it over and let me know, but would be good if you can"

10 minutes later...

Hubby - "Just say yes ,don't worry about anything, I'll manage home front"

(now you know why I clung on to him and wouldn't let go till said yes;-) )

So friends, I am off to Disneyland this Saturday ;-)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Round the clock


Our new client is in San Francisco
We are in India and we work nights
Their morning is our midnight
We need to get trained in one of their applications
The trainer is in Australia
A time which would be convenient for the three of us??!!

Happy Women's Day, btw :-)

Friday, February 12, 2010

Mission In Life


The name 'Covey' meant this was not just another training session
The trainer was Irish, been in India for seven years and doesn't want to go back. He started very mildly, talking about how trust is core to everything in our life - personal, official, just about everything. And then, a bomshell, "Tell me friends, what is your mission in life?"

Pin drop silence..

"Have you ever thought what is it that is most important in your life? What is it that you are so passionate about that you would never get tired doing it?"

Uncomfortable shifting of gazes, drumming of pens and pencils on the table....

"Well I'll tell you when you are going to think about it. When your doctor says you have six months to live!"

A few gasps!

"Now I will tell you how to find your mission. Think of what is core to you, what your values are, what is that you want to live by and for and as you ask yourself these questions, you will find some answers and more questions. At the end of it all, you will find the answer that you are looking for"

So my friends, while I am searching for my mission in life, you can wish me a happy birthday ;-)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

To Someone Very Special!


"Follow your heart, do what you are passionate about" - says the 3 idiots and almost everyone after watching them.

When was the last time you followed your heart? Have you really been listening to your heart after you did almost ten years back? The path that you chose then was not very easy, I agree. Thorns and stones were aplenty, the climb seemed too steep at times, you were at the brink of that deep gorge many a time. But the magnificent views, the cool streams, the refreshing breeze that caressed your cheeks, the treasures you found on the route have made you realize that this is where you were meant to be and where you always wanted to be.

The eyes that see beauty in the most mundane of things, the heart that throbs at even the softest of strums on the guitar, the feel of your skin on that hot engine ....when did you lose all these? Has making a living been at the cost of life itself?

I can still see the hidden gleam in those eyes, can hear that skip in the beat now and then and can feel that blood pulsing through the veins by a mere touch and I know the dreams are still there, the cobwebs just need to be brushed away.

So, here is to you, the one closest to my heart, on your very special day, a very special wish...

Go ahead...jump on to that rainbow, catch the tail of that star, go where your heart takes you and soar high....

A Very Happy Birthday to you, you Idiot!!

(p.s. - yes, the picture on top is taken by my hubby and no, that hand is not mine, I would love to own that rock, though :-). It is a tourist at the next table at Kovalam.
Here are a few of our favorite ones all taken long back. Time to dust that camera and to restring those guitars and just go...)

his first love

sky in thrissur


golf course - bangalore



sweet home of mine :-)


rainbow bridge - marine drive, kochi


friends at kovalam
at nelliampathy

kochi