Saturday, January 28, 2017

Human relationships are special

Most of our days are monotonous and dull as we are too busy to come out of our daily schedule. We are becoming more and more practical, career and gadget oriented day by day. Thus we are losing the liveliness inside each of us. Breaking free from the clasps of our electronic world and building meaningful relationships with our close ones in the real world is a dire necessity to get back to our peppy selves. We must feel that it’s high time to break the cage of this robotic world and instead get down to the roots and connect in person, by feeling and sharing real emotions in the real world! Here I’ll be narrating about a memorable day when I spent time with a lively lady I love- my grandmother.

I had got a fresh job after passing out of the engineering college. Right from childhood I was very close to grandma and she too left no chances to pamper me at every stage. She had high hopes on me too. So, after I procured my first salary I decided to spend it first on my beloved granny. Moreover her health was deteriorating quite fast. I did not want to lose out a lifetime opportunity of spending an entire day with her, trying few new things together and revisiting some old lanes which were close to her heart.

In her youth, grandma was a movie buff. So, I planned our itinerary such that it began with a movie. I knew her choices and unfortunately those could not be found in any cinema hall. Only option left was hiring the video CD of an old black and white hit movie which could be played inside house. Thus our program started indoor. Surprisingly granny had teeth. I arranged for popcorn and finger chips. In between movie sequences I whistled to create a flamboyant ambience for her. The fun started when she joined me too adding up to the sprightliness!

Lunch could easily be done at home but she was not a regular restaurant-eater. I wanted her to taste outside foods. The way she carried herself into a posh restaurant was unbelievable. Grandma enjoyed the food very much. My only problem started when she started bargaining against the food bill. People of elder generation believe in bargaining, be it in vegetable market or supermarket! She expressed extreme dissatisfaction towards me when I tried to hold back and manage the situation. Fortunately the manager understood the problem and overall there was no much problem.

Granny was a great animal lover. I took her to the zoo. She was almost like a kid while spotting tiger, lion, zebra, giraffe, hippo, rhino, different birds, reptiles etc. By evening we left the zoo and visited a famous temple to let her join the evening ritual. By late evening we returned home as taking food outside twice a day was not permissible at granny’s age.

That day I discovered the joy of #MagicOfWarmth after a long time. I realised that age is nothing but a state of mind and happiness is everywhere waiting for us to be picked up. Human relationships are special and we must value them. We must preserve the zippy individual in us!

I’m blogging about my #MagicOfWarmth moment at BlogAdda in association with Parachute Advansed Hot Oil

Warm Memory

Just before my granny passed away at her 89, I kissed her cheek and thanked her for all those wise words she had unconditionally showered on me. I had carried one specific odd piece of advice with me all of my life. It had been on 15th August, our Independence Day, when I was no more than ten years old, that she whispered a peculiar warning, borne of an age old anonymous wisdom, which moulded and directed my life for the next three decades. Honestly, at 89, she was far from the muse of my youth. She had used beetle leaf dye as a blusher to veil her pale face, and was quite a shock to behold when I turned the corner on her ground floor nursing home cabin. She asked with childly innocence if I could get her new make-up and white pearl jewelry set for her to wear.

With kid gloves, I asked her, "What type of pearl set?"

She replied, "Pricey, churrigueresque of course."

She lived under the misconception that she was in a seaside hotel at Puri, one that sucked on basic standards. "The foods at this hotel are terrible, but what is a person to do?"

She didn't know she was in a nursing home in the heart of Kolkata.

Now that she’d reached advanced age, death encroaching, I wanted her to know that I loved her, how her advice had molded me. As a child, I treasured ideas, and a few great thinkers like Tagore had touched my tender soul. My closest and best-loved scholar was sitting in a wheelchair, arms propped with a pillow and an alarm that would alert nurses if she pitched forward and left her chair's fixed position.

She was different the next time I saw her, the way she used to be.

"How come you don't call your Thamma more often? Humph!"

"Humph! You going to wait until I'm in the burning ghat and then you'll visit me?"

"I'm sorry that you'll be sorry, but then it'll be too late!"

This was the same salutation I had gotten from her over the years of telephone conversation. Her words always riddled me with guilt, though I never let her know. But I saw it as rather a good sign that she was still spunky. I quickly tried to change the subject. "Thamma, I remember sitting with you on the beach– just out this window – when I was about ten years old. I still remember the good advice you gave me back then."

"What advice did I give you?"

I told her, "The whole family was celebrating Dussera, happy to be together. You whispered in my ear, ‘Don't get too close to people; you'll catch their dreams.’”

"What?" she said.

I repeated, "Don't get too close to people; you'll catch their dreams."

"Oy!" she said. "I am very sorry if I ever told you that."

I reminded her of what an effect her words had on me. “Your advice stayed with me, both as a doctrine and in its poeticism.”

Her words had allowed me to remain aloof and separate from everyone, as a type of self-protection, to preserve my own dream.

She looked at me as though I were some stranger in a dream.

"I never told you that." She paused.

"Germs," she said. "I said you'll catch their germs. That’s the advice I always gave you."

That wrong notion had conquered every relationship in my life with ambivalence and a craving to be left alone. If one was alone, one was safe from what people could do to you, I had reasoned. Alas, one marriage and a dozen hiccups later, I had realised the truth of her advice too late!

I’m blogging about my #MagicOfWarmth moment at BlogAdda in association with Parachute Advansed Hot Oil

Friday, November 4, 2016

Dear Zindagi

Dear Zindagi,

I am no poet that I can pen down a poem dedicating you. Still today I'm blogging about all those simple things you have gifted me throughout my journey with you which keep me alive and whose presence make my life worth living:

* Walk under moonlit sky- from childhood I have fascination towards full moon night and spent many such nights playing with my cousins in village house, doing many naughty things. Nowadays I don't get village house or company of my playgroup but still I manage to spend quality time walking under moonlit sky to find happiness.

* Wife's chicken curry- my better half knows exactly how to make any man water by her cooked chicken curry. I think if saints of satya yuga were there today they too would water and feel greedy. No jokes but the secret which she never reveals even to me must be very special and I only know her chicken curry is good enough to make me happy.

* Memory of grandmother's fairy tales- In our joint family village house, grandmother used to narrate fairy tales of prince, princess and demons while we group of 12-13 kids used to gather to cherish those tales in the late evening and now such opportunity is not available but the memory still makes me happy.

* My daughter's hug after I return home in the evening- it acts as a mind relaxant and I feel the warmth of my family and my place in their hearts. It is a routine thing which never loses its flavor before me and I look forwards to it the whole day.

* Maternal grandfather- he is 104 years old now still he can take care of himself and talk meaningful. He can no more visit us although when I give him a visit once in a month or two, as we were very close since beginning, he gives me a welcome smile full of life and hope and that makes me very happy!

* Clock striking 5 PM evening- I get liberated from my office and happy faces of my family members float in my imagination, my wife winking at me, daughter hugging me and mother quenching her son's thirst. It is not that I hate my office or I feel out of place but the moment clock strikes five I feel time to shift to top gear and touch highway. There is no doubt I love my family more than office.

* A Thanks from a satisfied customer- in rush hours of office everybody sweats and loses temper, sometimes not cooperating and behaving so nicely with each other, be it staffs or clients. So amidst all chaos and formalities when a customer leaves my desk with a natural smile direct from his heart and a “thank you” I feel elevated and it truly makes me happy.

* Morning tea- I am totally tea loving guy and my morning will never start without a cup of strong tea. Due to weight issues I was taking green tea for six months but it was only due to health reasons and never from mind. So a decent morning tea makes me happy and acts as a perfect launch pad for my daily life.

* Cuckoo's song- In childhood we used to spot singing cuckoos hidden behind tall tree leaves. We used to compete among cousins. Till now a tune of a cuckoo bird hidden behind leaves makes me happy.

* Travel plans- travel plans in daughter's school vacations make me very happy as we all stay close to one another for few days, no office, no worries and moreover I love exploring nature and new places.

* Ice cream- I am fond of chocolate ice cream bars and cornetto. Even in winters I take ice cream. When I was in school I stole money from father's parse to buy ice cream from the wheeler outside school gate. The sense of ice over my teeth and tongue gives me heavenly relaxing mood. I like the thrill of biting through ice. Nowadays so many types ice creams available in market. But I love those chocolate ice creams with a stick which I bought after school. Ice cream makes me peppy.

* Chocolate- by chocolate since childhood we know only Cadbury because other brands were not much available in our place. It is different thing that nowadays many chocolate imported packets you get everywhere, but, in our childhood we did not have much choices. So I love diary milk and its sweet plus bitter taste gives me adrenaline rush. It boosts up my mood and makes me happy. I like toffees too but not as much as chocolate bars.

* Uncle- my uncle is a very benign loving father like human being who loves me very much. Sometime he visits my house and his company makes me happy. He is a perfect motivator and guide in my life.

* Chicken Pakoda by mother- I take chicken pakoda from many food courts but the one my mother cooks is beyond imagination. It is too good in taste and once you take you'll come to our house again and again to find happiness in your life like mine.

* Wife's morning kiss- the first kiss my wife gives in morning while handing over the newspaper makes my day. Our is an arranged marriage so the romance started late of marriage and I'm having the magical feeling for her everyday since last 10 years.

Frankly I do not know how to express my gratitude towards you. Please take this letter as my warm gesture and do keep in touch as always.

Yours faithfully,

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