Friday, November 4, 2016

Dear Zindagi

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“I am writing a letter to life for the #DearZindagi activity at BlogAdda“.

Dear Zindagi,
Zindagi na milegi dobara, (will not get chance to live life again) for there is no reset button but only rewind and fast forward to past and present, and so I feel it is appropriate that I express my profound gratitude to what you have given me in abundance. In this journey of 47 years, I have enjoyed in ampleness and endured in bounty, a weighing balance that is just and fair and the balance sheet summarizing assets and liabilities in equal measure; which means I break even!
The most complex organ, our central processing unit has the remarkable ability to turn back the pages of the life that you have granted at will and freedom and unleashing all the good, bad and ugly to re live those memories – smile, laugh, cry, scream, sulk, shout, acknowledge, repent, revenge, a string of emotions to apply or reject at the speed of sensory and motor neurons, of course depending on the availability of proteins’ supply in the brain. The entanglements lies knotted, unlike cobwebs which are in absolute symmetry, haphazard and disorganized in the labyrinths of life, and to cut the Gordian knot is next to impossible, however, you Zindagi, have given us the licence and liberty to set right the wrongs by not repeating them, reminisce the good old days to contemplate and muse over them, grant us the fantasy to day dream and build castles in the air, refresh the memories of those departed and revive the relationships gone awry and ones that are fair weather friends acting like embellishments who know us inside out and tolerate our temperaments!
You intrigue me with all the puzzles, surprise me with googlies, shock me with bouncers, enthrall me by your revelations, a roller coaster ride that is unmatched in any  amusement park, yet I adore this existence like a pilgrimage to a holy land or a cruise on the azure blue waters and if  you are planning to give a gratuity, a Diwali bonus, then I beseech you to play the elixir of life with all comedies and tragedies that form a perfect pot boiler, otherwise, it becomes monotonous, drab and boring! I am certain and convinced going by your track record, that you will not grant me a life in an ivory tower, but at least champagne on a beer budget that will lift me to high spirits and joy to behold!

This missive has transcended time, from the days of the birdie messenger, to drum beats of high and low notes expressing moods and sentiments to smokes, beacons and torches, to horses and long distance runners to ornamental scrolls and papyrus to postal letters and finally to digital era of E mails, chats and messengers; whatever be the mode and medium of communication, we all owe our profound and hearty appreciations to you, dear Zindagi for a birth that is significant in the smallest possible way, meaningful – maybe a bit belated, momentous on certain specific occasions, after all discounts and rewards offered are not available across the board and only on select brands, inconsequential- most of the times, weighty and burdensome like Hercules holding Earth on the powerful shoulders saddling the load and withstanding it!
 Thank you life for the shift, escape and control buttons to succeed, to be happy, dodge and break away, to manoeuvre and manipulate, to delete the unnecessary and erase the unwanted, to cut, copy and paste the actual and the real. I am living life to the fullest as this offer comes only once, I do not regret, repent or revenge but believe in Karma.

Yours most truly, destiny's child...

Friday, October 7, 2016

Odd and even - Yaron ki Baraat

For the first time on Indian television, ZEE TV brings you a fun-filled chat show Vivo Smartphone presents Yaaron Ki Baraat co-powered by and Brooke Bond Red Label that will put celebrity friendships to test through a series of fun challenges and tasks. Tune in to ZEE TV at 8 PM on 8th October.

Friends, our alter egos with behaviour as contrasting as the Sun and the Moon, but gelling and hitting off as a pair to paint our lives red;(maybe not red as it is too jarring, well you choose the colour) while I shift to green owing to my personal affinity to the bountiful nature! Cronies who are the extended family, the cornerstones of our joyful lives, partners in guzzling beer, accomplices in pranks,  companions in concerts and film shows, navigators in times of distress, consorts in love and war, the search engines during doubtful periods , the collaborators in conspiracies, associates in adventure, allies in networking and the iconic reasons for this post!
Let me have the joy and privilege of taking you all, back in time to the effervescent eighties filled with songs, shares, styles and shenanigans in abundance and studies in miserly terms with my bosom buddy Minu!

 The undergraduate class of 1987 in one of the prestigious and trendy colleges of Cochin beckoned all the freshers with animosity, trepidation, excitement – a cocktail of all emotions and we the new comers trudged  happily into the gallery class facing the azure blue  back waters of the Arabian sea.  
Minu was a different kettle of fish altogether, a slim girl with long straight hair that she let loose and on top of her forehead, a mop of wavy hair, always tossing it up gracefully and me, a spring rolled, not so slim , awkward and not so elegant. So absolutely chalk and cheese as far as biological similarities were concerned! Demeanour wise too, I marched to a different tune while she was downright soft spoken and a horse of another colour. 

Lost in an ocean of new faces and stylish stilettos, I occupied a vantage top berth to get a bird’s eye view of the sea and a 360 degree panoramic view of an all girls’ class. Next to me sat my new demure friend flashing a sparkling smile every two minutes while I was itching to break the silent conversation that was happening between the two of us! As the teachers, ranging from savvy to strict to smart to somber and silly marketed themselves and their subjects, my game plan was to talk ourselves out!
She fell hook, line and sinker for me, proving right the maxim ‘opposites poles attract’. A tete a tete that started with the zodiac sign (For Linda Goodman was a crazy obsession those days!) and ended with everything under the sun! The days turned into months and we became steadfast friends and as she was from the science stream, I had the honour of being an uncrowned queen helping her out with accounts and finance.
The three years in the degree college had all the masala of a pot boiler movie; the college was run by Christian missionaries and so ‘discipline’ was their second name and Minu’s family was strict and orthodox and so we took extra happiness in bunking classes (by bribing the gatekeeper) and hoodwinking her parents to watch movies together. Nothing can match the thrill of the adrenaline rush in breaking the convention and rules, to hide from known and familiar faces and brave all odds to accomplish our goals. Friday afternoons were long lunch hours and the favourite icecream joint was a glorious hangout, a great redemption from the service sermons of the chapel  and we had the jubilation of breaking the Shawshank prison!
The umpteen songs of Richard Marx, our romantic music hero still echo in my ears, reminiscent of the past- 

many hours that were happily spent in her palatial bungalow which had a mini theatre. Her mom would serve us all the delicacies while her big brother (lovingly nicknamed as commando) would watch us over like hawks! Despite the strict vigil, we did manage to give him the slip and indulge ourselves in all the forbidden pleasures, but well within the framework of the written and oral constitution.
Both of us would be lost in that exotic dream trip to alluring avant garde locations in an open gypsy, with music blaring and driving at insane speeds to be with nature’s bounty, carefree and crazy, beating all draconian laws and rigid parents. The gypsy of Maruti Suzuki may have become obsolete but the mirage of the mind will never disappear and I have safeguarded it in my memory vault for thirty years !!!
When two celebrities can come together on a fantastic chat show and re-enact the yaaron ki baarat sequence from the super hit film of dostana after 35 years, nothing can stand in the way in reconnecting with a sidekick and I am eagerly waiting for that D day!
We have sung, danced, guffawed, cried, screamed, studied, pranced and dreamt together and these simple joys bonded us for a lifetime  and it is time to break into a song...

Follow @ZeeTV #YaaronKiBaraat

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Brandishing the broom


                Brandishing the broom
Glances at the clock furtive
Waiting for the elusive
The most relevant, conspicuous by absence
Mountain of dishes jostling for space
Mighty upper hand to do the chores
Repeated calls and rush to the doors

And then she arrives in style on a dirty carpet
Wielding a look of hurry and unkempt
Reverberation of dissent at the sink
I plonk on the sofa unable to think
Operas of the utensils reaching a crescendo

The maid adroit and skilled at taekwondo

The next chore, gives me and the floor a sweeping
Brandishing the broom, room to room hopping
Diffusing the tension for the present
While she ready to go to the adjacent
The lady cajoled and clamoured for completion
Dab, swab and mop, her scutwork ends with aggression

Heaving a sigh of relief, a routine to follow each day
Oh..Chambermaid, do not play truant I pray!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Run up to the reunion-part one

The class of 85, the gilded clique captured in fifth grade!

Ajith, Bindu, Hari, Jayaram, Krishnakumar, Meena…no, this isn’t the roll call from the attendance register that I am so used to these days nor are they prospective Indian baby names but yes they are evergreen names of a family of nomenclature, that belong to the exclusive and elite club of the class of 1985 and can never become obsolete or archaic!
The hot pursuit to track down the elusive bunch began when Mark Zuckerberg gave to the world fB and while still in its nascent stage, a few of us became the guinea pigs for the social networking site to gain popularity and rake in the moolah. The witch hunt became an obsession and in the process, priceless buddies (along with graduation pictures and group photos) were unearthed, though their transformation matched the years that had gone by, the masquerades were given away by the demeanour, which is timeless and classic. Well, time can take away our youth, hair on the head, or it can be chivalrous by adding more wrinkles or deposit more fat instead of money in the bank account but it cannot snatch the exuberance and monkey business that are the hallmarks of this “Gilded Clique”, (for more adventures of this camarilla read the poem at it is just appropriate that I express gratitude to the benefactor for this remarkable appellation that best describes us! Thank you Meena for this sobriquet and the chat room idea!
Barring a few bumping into on some sidekicks, mini reunions and reconnections, nothing spectacular happened on the fB front with many avoiding it like plague and couple of the social butterflies getting disillusioned by the like and dislike syndrome and beating a hasty retreat!
However, the inquest continues with technology making the man hunt easy and not ending up in wild goose chases or barking up the wrong trees! Leaving no stone unturned, all platforms and avenues are being explored, searched and many of the classmates smoked out of their hide outs after all we were the treasure hunters of yester years!
The excitement in the Whatsapp air is palpable along with the flattering fifth grade class photo , with the demonstration of bonhomie, love, affection, humming and buzzing of messages pulling each other’s legs to the point of myriad emojis popping up, typical of  a chat room! It has been thirty long years since we all parted ways from the class room, in search of higher education, job, career, love, partnership, marriage children, the normal, and the bizarre stuff of life…and the prospect of a reunion post three decades is one of ecstasy, (the sheer joy of nostalgia and a trip down memory lane, free of cost) tossed up withcuriosity, (how have all the bucktoothed, ponytailed metamorphosed or ‘transfigured’) trepidation (apprehension and paranoia at conversing face to face with companions and comrades who have eroded away with time, and I realize that chatting on the virtual space with friendly banters is much more easier) and Panic (would I be able to place the face?or will I fumble at the choice of words?)
As we spend the next few months contemplating on the logistics, the makeup, the attire and the hairdo, the distinct sound of glassware clinking, the warmth of the bear hugs and handshakes, unmistakable sound of laughter and banter, is reverberating in my space!

Friday, September 2, 2016

The big heart

I was the privileged one among the cantankerous cousins making merry at my uncle’s house every summer, with the fortuity of being a young patient of my benevolent uncle. An annual rendezvous of the paternal family, gave us the unmatched happiness of the entire brood coming together and painting the small town of Madurai red in the scorching summer month of May when the Vaigai river was all parched with not a single drop of water. The large patriarchal house playing host to the bubbly effervescent baker’s dozen whose talents ranged from solving cryptic puzzles (the genes inherited from the patriarch more at playing the Mridangam, or excelling in academics with the added flair for the English language(that could cringe even Her Majesty!) to the Math genius, who had answers at the blink of an eye, a magician adept at pulling out wonders! Among these multitude of stars, I was a heavenly body that never emitted any light and while these children of the greater God worked wonders, I, the myopic with specialization in astigmatism (well, for the hawk eyed who have never stepped inside an ophthalmologist’s lair, the term means the irregular surface of the cornea of the eyes) accompanied my philanthropic ophthalmologist uncle to his quaint little clinic on a very busy street that was synonymous with TVS ( and Dr.Subbaraman, a man who has only charity as his second name!

Noticing the deep anguished and disappointing contours on my face that for see the torture and tumult of the ensuing couple of hours where my eyes would literally go wide, with the annoying irritating drops to dilate my pupils, the altruistic Doctor would make a pit stop at a famous bakery and order “Jupiter” cake, a delight that matched the name in size, and the rich creamy toothsome was a great consolation. The inspection of my amplified eye at his adorable clinic stocked with abundant and copious medicines, surgical tools, lenses and hordes of writing pads and pens, by the expert took place only when he ran out of patients, (a period of eternity) as it never happened for two obvious reasons, (apart from his expertise and skill),one, the meagre fees, a trifle that was charged, and the cheerful banter between the stethoscope wielder and the gossiping mothers in law or the complaining daughters in law. These repartees were a ploy to ease the pain and the tedium of the whole exercise. Finally, just as I was on the verge of reaching saturation point, with all the patience (and patients) drained out, he would finally examine mine with his tried and tested traditional tools, an epoch span of confusion and indecisiveness, as each testing lens on that rickety outlandish frame would blur my eyes further leading to disoriented perplexities! The outcome, a foregone conclusion – power would have increased by leaps and bounds, geometric progression in reality!

 His man Friday Manickam was his compounder, apprentice, henchman and in fact everything, a person who would wait on him and all the flipped and freaked out guys of the Thathamangalam household!
The shutters down for the day, my uncle drove through the crowded by lanes and stopped at his favourite optical shop to order the frame, the over enthusiastic owner keen to spread his ware, an assortment that is a far cry from today’s collection, with the one and only chunky bold black spectacle frames making style statements. (they were the only ones that walked the ramp!) No payments were made leaving me bewildered, but soon I understood that his benevolence in the form of free surgeries, bulk orders of lenses and frames and many other things left them itching to reciprocate and I became the benefactor! There would be more shopping for goodies such as ground nut candies ( I am drooling with saliva frothing like that of a cow’s at the very mention of this) and other sweets and savouries including a medley of pappads, he would often be at a loss as to what could be excluded from the list, inundating and showering us with his generosity! Following us like a faithful dog would be Manickam on his bicycle with an oversized carton on the carriage!

Buoyant at our return, the jingbang brought the roof down with chaotic scenes of delight, glee and jocundity. Carrom, (the elders teaming up with their beloved nephew and niece), cards ( the beguile betrayers in a game of bluff master) , scrabble ( the walking lexicons manipulating with the seven alphabets)and hide and seek ( the destructive dickens) were the all time favourites, obviously not for the grumpy neighbours!

The excursions to the circus and the exhibition stalls with my father as the Pied Piper who patiently but sternly steered all the crazy cousins into the magical world of performers and artists are etched in my minds! The countless stalls illuminated with dazzling lights and playing loud music with magical mirrors, flying parachutes, rocking animals, merry go rounds was a paradise and we soaked in the fun and frolic unmindful of the heat and dust!

The sombre anniversary ceremony of my grandmother would take place amidst all the anarchy and bedlam on the next day, followed by the grand feast on the plantain leaf with an array of dishes. Whoever licked the leaf clean without wasting even a morsel of food stood to win a prize from the Doctor Uncle and I became the unassailable champion, invincible and unconquerable by the envying cousins!

The icing on the cake was the event that unfolded immediately after lunch – all the rambunctious girls and boys (including the children of my uncle) of the smart smartha ‘Thats’ family ( a sobriquet for the village called Thathamangalam in Palakkad town of Kerala that was our ancestral home) were made to sit in a circle and Periappa( Father’s elder brother in Tamil) dumped loads of gifts from huge cartons and we were free to decamp with anything that we liked. These gifts were carefully and lovingly collected by the charitable Doctor over the year and secretly stored away from the prying and greedy eyes of his children and comprised of all and sundry that had us squealing in absolute delight, a salmagundi of knickknacks, souvenirs, trinkets and whatnots! A deluge of pens, diaries, scribble pads, paper weights, board games, playing cards, and other compliments and freebies given by pharmaceutical companies lie in a heap waiting to be grabbed by the avaricious lot!

My Uncle, an amiable human being with a fair share of eccentricities and idiosyncrasies takes extreme pride in pampering his guests irrespective of the caste, strata or community they belonged to and so from the vegetable vendor to the minister’s son, all got drenched in his affection, goodwill and compassion!
This annual jaunt became the most looked forward to affair for all of us and I go teary eyed at the joyful reminisces of the past. These family get-togethers gave us merriment, love and affection and taught us the profound and grand meanings of life such as sharing, caring, benevolence, and impartiality, bonhomie, partaking in ceremonies and rituals and the ultimate pride and regalement of one large extended family with my dear large hearted Periappa holding the reins! I salute and bow in reverence and gratitude to my dear Uncle and Aunt who are instrumental in moulding my character and attitude and for showing me what philanthropy means! 

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Basic Electronics by G Ramaswamy, a thumbnail

The Cover Page

I have the privilege and honour of presenting to my beloved readers and followers, my husband G Ramaswamy, who has just authored an academic and technical book on the rudiments of electronics. The book is titled "Basic Electronics" and is a comprehensive textbook for first/second semester BE students coming under the ambit of VTU in Bengaluru. The book is a publication from Sapna Book House, one of the leading book stores in Bengaluru.
The official book launch by Mr.Nitin Shah, MD, Sapna Book House

The author, Mr. G Ramaswamy has more than a decade of experience as a pedagogue in various technological institutions in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu and the vast years of involvement and exposure has helped him immensely in writing this text book. Added to that, his stint as a freelance educationist,supporting students for projects has further assisted in his quest for knowledge.

This book is an outcome of his passion for books right from early childhood and the thirst for understanding concepts in depth.
The author with the display at Sapna Book House

It is a all inclusive text book on the five modules as prescribed by the
VTU in strict adherence to the latest Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) methodology of study for the first and second semester students who are pursuing the Bachelor of Engineering degree.
The salient features of the book are:

  • Crisp and lucid explanation of the basics of the subject
  • All 5 modules covered in depth
  • Comprehensive analysis with appropriate circuits and diagrams to support the chapters
  • Seamless transition from one module to another
  • Plenty of review questions and University questions answered
  • Multiple choice questions aiding Graduate Aptitude Test In Engineering (GATE) exam
  • Ready reckoner for key topics and elements that are useful from exam point of view 
Presented below is a thumbnail of the book.

It is indeed gratifying to write the first review and give a concise summary of the book. Hoping that the students would be benefitted by the text and the author accomplishes the task of sharing his knowledge and expertise in this field.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Humour in court - guest post by my father N. Krishnan

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The laws of the Indian land, inherited from the colonial powers, are there to protect the citizens, safeguard the nation, settle disputes and provide remedies to the affected thereby administering justice. Providing a common law system to a diverse country such as ours, are different tiered courts in a pyramidal form with the Supreme Court at the apex.  
A so called accused or a person falsely implicated or with stacks of allegations against him passes through the labyrinths of the complex and slow judicial process that includes filing of case, legal proceedings and trials, innumerable court hearings, never ending adjournments, petitioning, providing evidences that are circumstantial, appeals and counter appeals, among scores of other series of actions. The length of the trials extends beyond the imagination of the poor fish before he is eventually let scot free or condemned and damned for life! The painful attempts to prove one’s innocence takes a lifetime and inflict a hefty blow on the psyche of the individual. Allegations are fabricated, false evidences are provided and the defendant is denied to present his or her part of the story in a fair and meaningful exchange of arguments. The judge, prosecutor, lawyers are all hand in glove in this quagmire of deceit and fatten their wallets at the expense of the hexed victim. The poor middle class who barely get to meet their ends have a further can of worms in the form of exorbitant legal fees, hefty sums that are given as grants to prove one’s innocence.   
In this bleak context, the individual loses his moorings and his life, which was meant to be cheerfully spent with his family, is wasted in doing the court room rounds periodically, only to hear a fresh date for further hearing. It is therefore natural that any honest Indian citizen is outraged and frustrated at how the legal order works ridden with flaws, quirks and oddities.

 But my father, a victim of fallacious and baseless charges, keeps his chin up, looks at the bright side of the scourge that has been haunting him for more than a decade, blows away the cobwebs by presenting a guest post titled “humour in court”, which is a ludicrous tale on our judicial system! 

   Humour in court
In the face of adversity, it requires a lot of equanimity to see the humorous side of happenings and to appreciate it 
Today (23rd July 2016), in the court as a defendant in a CBI criminal case, going on for the past 10 years, I had  to wait for my turn for the roll call for attendance by entering  the special enclosure. Before our case was taken up, two NIA (National Investigation Agency) cases were scheduled. The first one was postponed to a later date and the second case was about to meet the same fate. Among the eight under trial detainees, three were present (let us call them Abdul (with a luxurious beard), Ahmed (clean shaven except for a moustache) and Basheer (with an unshaven chin)). Basheer, when the judge was about to mention a fresh date for the postponed hearing, wanted to make a submission.  He requested the judge’s permission to grow a beard ! The judge was gracious enough to dictate an order directing the jailer to consider his request, if it is not against the jail manual!  (I was left wondering how another cell mate can sport a conspicuous beard – he was also carrying a cell phone)  
Then our case was  taken up and after the roll call, the junior advocate of the main defendant ( even though their Senior advocate, who was playing truant for the past 3 or 4 postings, was present and was standing in the verandah ) sought more time to present their arguments . The judge (who was nursing a fractured shoulder with his right arm in a sling!) fixed the date as 24th August 2016. The junior advocate wanted some more time and the judge fixed 3rd September 2016. The Junior advocate accepted that date and sat down and within couple of minutes was on his feet again and requested a still later date. When the judge demanded to know the reason, he blurted out that he is getting married on that date and he had forgotten about it! The whole court including me burst out in laughter.  The other advocates preset commented that the junior advocate did not mention about his good tidings and the Public prosecutor said that he has not been invited for the wedding!. The judge then fixed the date of next hearing as 24th September  2016 saying that it gives him enough time for the wedding and the honey moon  thereafter. He also said that he is inviting the public prosecutor and the other advocates on behalf of the junior advocate on the assumption that he has his authority to do so !!!
I met the junior advocate later in the veranda and wished him all the best but cautioned him not to forget marriage anniversaries in future, as he can no longer afford to.        

Friday, August 5, 2016


My school had large open spaces with huge trees that provided the ideal environs for the adventurous batch of bubbling enthusiastic students to play and explore but lurking in these lung spaces were distressing evil phenomenon, happenings and occurrences that blew the daylights out of the innocent and naive children. Every other day, we were rudely exposed to men, women and sometimes children hanging from the trees and this spectre remains as a disfigurement in the minds’ imagery making some of us traumatized. These gory sights can never be forgotten and had a profound impact on life and its vagaries and like Gautama in search of enlightenment, we did some soul searching on these incidents. Having spent the growing up years in the suicide capital of India, which is Kerala, the daily depressing acts of terminating lives due to incapacities, addictions, under performances, over expectations, reprimands and punishments have always aroused our emotional reactions and responses to situations. Most of us emerged stronger as a result of the introspections into life while a few were bogged down, affected and depressed probably because of the glitches in the wiring system of our central processing unit.
A repercussion of this could be felt like aftershocks when we lost one of our classmates afflicted by the dreadful depression syndrome. A proficient dancer who was enriched with external and internal beauty and intellect, she became a darling to her friends in the school, the cynosure of the teachers and the apple of the eye of her parents who would dote on her and spent ample time with her to pursue her soaring dancing career.
We all parted ways after school days, each one of us badgering our dream careers and passions and my friend sought tutelage under the great danseuse Smt. Sudharani Raghupati and persisted devotedly and with dedication in her attempts to strive higher and farther. But somewhere along this hot pursuit, her life hit a crisis point, her moods wavered, her social interactions got reduced, her eating was negligible and she went into two extremities of manic and depressive episodes while her family had no clue as to the predisposition.
The alienation with lack of collaboration and connection eventually resulted in the inevitable....she took her own life.
And the sad realities are that these are not one –off incidents, but the harsh realities of our society, although the decision may be entirely individualistic, the impact of the environment, culture and societal is immense. The evolving society has made lives more complex and people who are adamant and lethargic to change and adapt have found themselves left behind. The alarming and distressing statistics of the rates of suicide across the spectrum ranging from a reprimanded child in school to a traumatized college student aided and abetted by ragging, or a wayward youth struggling from addiction to alcohol or substance abuse to the overzealous person trying to achieve what looks seemingly impossible or the happily married wife’s tale going sour owing to the hypocrisy of the partner to the terminally ill patients who see no meaning in the word “live”.
A torrent of patronizing advices follow each time an incident happens, if only he or she had confided, taken expert opinion, been prescribed anti depressants, or been told how much she or he was loved or adored. These prescription words hardly have any positivity and are not even two cents worth, on the contrary it urges the person to despair more that something dreadful is happening and the wiring gets more complicated. There is a feeling of guilt of being psychotic and turbulence of the mind takes control of the body and soul.
When I talk of connections and wiring that are woefully gone wrong in certain individuals, it also implies that the safety net is also missing and this net becomes imperative to push or pull you away from extremities. Therefore, the bonds that form the safety net have to re introduced in these cases. Distraction from their present state of affairs, taking them away from the geographical location that has deprived them of laughter and cohesiveness, seeking things out without their realization apart from medical help could well be the Bodhi tree!

‘The story of a suicide’ 
Image source -Indiblogger

written very boldly and in true absorbent style by the author Sriram Ayer touches the chord of every individual living in an urbanized pluralistic society that has taken cognizance of the third gender whether wholeheartedly or with inhibitions is undoubtedly a matter of one’s own perception and judgement. The trials and tribulations of people in a society with varying culture, diversities, traditions, beliefs, faiths have been very beautifully and seamlessly interwoven in the story.
The entire book is fragmented into chapters with titles that are distinct to the characters and the episode relating to them. The description of the protagonists in the sensitive, tear jerking story along with their attitudes, expectations and exposures to technology are relevant and most appropriate. The narrative is lucid and the readers can correlate to the characters so very well and personally the central pivotal figure triggering the chain of events, “SAM” vibes with my Tambrahm image, upbringing and culture.
Tackling the unpleasant and destructive tendency such as suicide on gender inadequacies and overt relationships has been sharply and graphically described highlighting the shortcomings of individuals (the cross wirings).How they tend to become inadequate and misfits in their domain and in the society is also intricately brought out here.
The illustrations are remarkable and blend well with the theme effortlessly.
The only flaws that seemed obvious to the readers are the superfluous hashtags’ conversation and the distasteful tones in the communicative language among the youth, though both of the above mentioned are the order of the day!
 On the whole, this story is remarkable and unputdownable for the sheer alacrity of the story line and the characters and subtlety of the subject matter.

You can watch the trailer of the book here..

Saturday, July 30, 2016


One day in Bengaluru...

Does my title sound like a sequel to “one night in Bangkok”,  then sorry for disappointing my dear readers, for there is no massage parlours or spas to pamper and lure, but the craters on the road could really get you in hell...well almost unless there is detour to heaven! And the garbage dumps could well be the aromatic and therapeutic standalone treatment!  

Or the foamy Bellandur lakes could well be the jacuzzi with whirlpool tubs, massage jets and bubble baths that add sparkle to your travel weary bodies!

Well, if you are the adventure type, head to Silk board junction and one can have a field day fishing on the roads inundated with breached Madiwala lake and there are locals to support with makeshift nets and other fishing accessories. Falling hook, line and sinker are the hordes of commuters, in vehicles, not with snorkels and anglers though, lining the fishing camp with their overworked fingers on cell phones running out of messages on social media and the cars out of fuel, faces flushed and charged with restlessness, frustration, disappointment, irritation, anger, ready to scream, explode, but then the fishing scenes put them on hold.

Boating comes next with fire and rapid action personnel accompanying you as tour guides for fear of getting carried away into the main storm water drains!

For the skylarks, a politician with a funny hat and goggles could take you for a ride on poor not so well fed asses and buffaloes. His voices of dissent would earn you yet another holiday with offices, schools and colleges shut fearing the donkeys’ outcries and splintering sound of glasses in the towering buildings!

For the laggards and lazy bones, who prefer to idle away in front of their tellys or updating their statuses on WP and FB, the sedentary and inert lame duck administration, with their quick fix solutions or lack of them, will fulfil your dreams by not resolving the pressing appeals of hapless BMTC workers.

Well, if you thought these spontaneous freewilled holidays could give you time to blog, then think again, as this girl studying in Christ University faced the music for venting ire on her alma mater through her blog, for not declaring holiday on days of strikes!

All hexed, vexed and perplexed Bangaloreans can do is to sing along with me “one day in Bangalore...”and enjoy the bounty city...”Guru...banni..haadonna..”!!!  

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

My Shangri- la!

My memories of a trip, way back in the mid eighties to the paradise on Earth, Kashmir, is etched in gold and often I reminisce about the days of planning the itinerary, the long waits in queues to get the train tickets (airlines were expensive in those days and only the elite travelled by them and we as part of a public sector could not simply afford!), the snail mail letters to our loved ones staying in the same place for accommodation and arrangements of local transport for sightseeing. Yes, it was a tedious process and often nerve wracking too in terms of cost, time and energy. And there was no guarantee of a tension free holiday as sometimes the bookings may not just get through, one may not have the proper connects, the hotel booked may not suit one’s palate and budget and so on and eventually, the holiday that was meant to be, would turn out to a damn squib with groans and moans. Fortunately, our holiday then, did not have this unforeseen ending, thanks to my colonel uncle who was posted in the borders who gracefully took care of everything from start to finish. But one cannot expect knights in shining armour to do all and sundry to make our dreams come true, can we?
Cut to today and yes we can have samaritans in yatra with their lovely holiday package and the digital era has ensured that each one of us enjoy our vacations that suit our style, locale, budget and travel. Holidays are planned by the clicks of buttons and are no longer cumbersome, and we soon land in our fairy tale destinations without frustrations, predicaments and hardships!
Without much ado, let me plan a trip for myself, a dream destination that I have longed to undertake for years, a place where I can unwind among the gigantic waterfalls, undulating rivers, massive am not talking about the Swiss Alps or the Andes or the Australian reef but our own North eastern states, pristine unspoilt beauty of magnificent India with the mesmerizing Cherrapunji and bewitching Nohkalikai and Mawsmai cascades that is an experience to last a lifetime!
My flight to fantasy begins with the airlines that is going to take me there and who else but yatra to bank upon for the schedules, the options and the tariffs with special discounts! I check with availability on the dates and do a quick comparison of the different option on domestic airlines and narrow down on the one that matches my budget and requirements. Next on my do list comes the tour package deal that has to be obviously a steal and best in class and comfort. I have my tour partner to bank upon who will do everything in a jiffy and get the confirmation back in no time. So I can sit back, relax and think of the next item on the check list which is accommodation and food. The hassle free tour operator assures me of the best hotels that serve vegetarian fare in the seven sisters’ states with comfortable and affordable stay in a decent dwelling and a major aspect of travel woes is taken care of in style.
I manage a fair deal on a round trip with all the necessary ingredients of fun, frolic and fantasy that seals a fantastic holiday in the rains amidst nature’s bounty and planning one was never so easy as I found the perfect partner in airlines and schedules!

So folks, pack your bags and embark with me on a journey that will hold you to sway and you will thirst for more!  
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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Change..the inevitable..

Save the change

Change, the most unalterable word for a ‘square peg in a round hole’ me and try as I might to reinforce the metamorphosis element in my disposition, it simply does not happen and woefully remain a misfit. I am cheerful, genial, sensitive and can keep adding adjectives to describe my personality as they are absolutely free not costing a penny and totally under my control ready to be unleashed at will, but switch, transform, adapt, the need of the hour buzz words, (and why three words, just in case my readers are pondering, it is that I cannot remember more than three at a time) are out of bounds for me; it is like taking a horse to the water but not make it to change!
So I am a leopard with its spots firmly on or a Zebra that is not willing to change its stripes; now you stumble upon the animal instincts in me, nevertheless they do adopt and adapt to survive and that lovely company too eludes me.
What triggered me to the obsession with the celebrated and sought after jargon, ‘change’ apart from the normal embarrassing predicament that I am in, is the Television serial on the famed and loved Sherlock Holmes recreated in 2010 by Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat that took the world by storm with an incredible Internet Movie Database (IMDb) rating of 9.3! The creators have brilliantly superimposed Sir Arthur’s genius sleuth and his doctor partner in 21st century London. The modernized version keeps the essence of the characters very much intact but craftily uses the detective and the plots to suit and vibe with the current generation. I ‘deduce’ myself like a penny waiting for change while the world around me converts and mutates at the click of a finger.
Everything and everyone is undergoing sea change – the Sun, the moon (distancing itself from the Earth and I can consider the reason to be the brutal and merciless killing of human beings across the globe in the name of religion), the seasons, tidal waves, topography, technology, people, products, services, plants, fruits and vegetables with hybridization, birds ( abandoning traditional nests on trees, for there are no trees) and building hopes and dreams for their fledglings in kitchen chimneys, food, beverages, mode of transport, buildings (I look up to the Burj Khalifa open mouthed), toon characters, films, music (genres I have long lost count of), politics, history, society, culture, talent, intelligence, arms and ammunitions, extremist outfits atrocities, greed, profiteering, annexations, traffic, population, behaviour, attitudes, perceptions...the Earth in a nutshell, from the elements to the abstract altering, modifying and innovating while I remain rooted to terra firma very much tilted and inclined to the unyielding cow or bull in the middle of Indian roads! You know where my sympathies lie...don’t you?
Resolute and unwavering in my thoughts and actions despite the turn of events, there is turbulence and pandemonium in my brain to go with the flow and not swim against the current and try to turn the tide in my favour! But each passing day manifests itself in more complex labyrinths that are beyond the bounds of possibility for the hackneyed old chestnut!

Elementary my dear readers...I have changed..welcome to my new domain

Saturday, April 2, 2016

On many occasions, I have felt the supernatural intervention of miracle hands that have helped me in distress and allowed me to come out unscathed. In these moments of anguish and misery, these marvel human beings have lifted me from the abyss and apocalypse to get on with life. Are they inspirations, power of God, oracles or epiphanies, I know not, but there are far too many to shrug them off as coincidences or fortuity or simply a stroke of luck. These guardian angels vanish without a trace before I say the profuse and profound ‘Thank you” and they are never to be seen again. The poem below is a “benediction” to all those saviours who arrive at the opportune moments to pull me out of fire and get me off the hook time and again! I have intentionally used alphabets ‘T’ and ‘G’ in the verses to express my “Thank you” and “Gratitude” to the “Godsend”.  

Times many have I encountered
The rendezvous with an angel in disguise
Tryst with miracle men
Turning things around

Godsend to trouble shoot
Grant and bestow alacrity
Governed by manifestation
Gratuity I can never forget

Times many have I benefitted
Going on a wild goose chase
To come face to face with my messiah
Giving me revelation of a rare kind

True they could be fate and destiny
Grasp on situations beyond control
To bring me back on track
Gospel of faith on the supreme
Godsend to take under HIS wing
Guiding through perils
Genie that appears and disappears
Guiding spirit whom I have not thanked

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