Saturday, August 17, 2013

Thanks Partner:)

Today I am going to write about that special person in my life without whom I simply cannot imagine my present or my future!

One of the main reasons I am able to fulfill the dual, highly-demanding roles of a full-time home-maker and a full-time professional is the constant support of my partner.

Thanks to the understanding we share, I can smoothly adjust my daily routine to accommodate the unanticipated (yet omnipresent) maladies of ordinary life, such as an early morning meeting at office, a late night call from home, a doctor's appointment or an impromptu social visit.

In the hectic times we live in today, stressful situations often arise, and arguments/misunderstandings in relationships are common. However, through our actions, we have managed to mutually overcome any misunderstandings. Indeed, actions speak louder than words in our case, for neither my partner can understand any of the 5 languages that I can speak (Kutchi, Gujarati, Hindi, English, Telugu) nor can I follow my partner's native tongue (Tamil)!

Yet, language has never with held Sandammai from being so much more to me than just a house-help. Amma, as we address her, has sensed and comforted me when I missed my parents and home, taken care of me when I was unwell, saved my life (from cockroaches and lizards) on multiple occasions - according to me this takes courage of the highest order, and above all talked to me...yes that has meant a great deal for me.

Our general conversations - Amma sharing her thoughts, listening to mine - words never fully understood on either side but meaning always conveyed - have always left me rejuvenated and more importantly, over a period of time, played a huge role in kindling in me a sense of belonging to Chennai.

'Marriage and therefore relocation to Chennai' is much harder than 'marriage and therefore relocation to XYZ city in India'. Despite being a metro, Chennai is very difficult to gel into because of the language barrier that permeates almost every interaction in this city, at home and outside. And so I am very grateful to having Amma in my life, because bonding with her has made me feel a part of this city, where I am to spend the rest of my life.

Thanks Amma!

Stay Happy,

Thursday, August 1, 2013

You Can Do It!

I had written this short story a long time back...reading it again today felt so good! boasting but I think it's a nice, inspirational story and would be a great addition to my blog, so here goes:

It was around 6:30 AM on January 18, 2010…Tania was about to reach her coaching classes, she was going on a scooty her friend Shilpa was driving.  Just then, two men on a motorcycle came in speeding from the wrong direction on the one-way road.  Shilpa managed to avoid colliding with the motorcycle but hit the footpath instead.  While she managed to keep her balance, Tania was tossed in the air and fell on the ground with a thud, her head hitting the pavement. 
Having heard the noises, their classmates came rushing down and took them to the hospital.  While Shilpa only suffered some scars on her legs, doctors said Tania required a brain surgery immediately – a clot had formed in the right side of her brain, and she was bleeding profusely from the mouth, nose, and ears…
…“No…don’t…please!!”…tears welled up in Dhruv’s eyes…the nurse was shaving Tania’s head as she lay unconscious on the stretcher.  He stood there helpless, watching his beautiful younger sister’s long and silky hair being shaved off.

Tania gazed at her head in the mirror, hair had started to grow. “It’s close to two months today,” she thought.  “Tanu, come eat the almond sheera,” her thoughts were interrupted by her mother’s voice.  “Augh”, muttered Tania.  She disliked sweets, yes – despite being a Gujju. 
She quickly tied the scarf over her head and went to the dining table.  As she grumpily ate the sheera, her mom sat looking at her, and glimpses of that horrid day came rushing to her mind…

…She and her husband were in a state of shock.  Dr Nadkarni, the neurosurgeon, tried to reassure them – “You both need to be strong.  She needs you…Trust me, she will be fine.”

“Mom! I will be fine”, said Tania, sensing her mother worrying again, and jerked her out of her thoughts.  Tania smiled, her right cheek hurt a little.  She took her parents’ blessings and left to write her exam – it was her last paper today.  She left with Kajal, her little sister, who was going to school.

“Can I see her? Please…It’s been two days,” Kajal looked at her Dad hopefully…
…Kajal appeared amused as nurses put on the green robe and mask on her and hurried her into the ICU.  “What a clean place this is”, she thought as she walked along. 
Suddenly she stopped.  She saw her Tanu Di on a bed some distance away – she looked so weak… head covered in bandage…struggling  to open her mouth and drink the milk…Tania spotted her too and called out, “Hey Kiddo!”...

“Hey Kiddo!  Exams over…am a free bird”, Tania said excitedly, gesturing with her arms spread out, as Kajal opened the door.

Everyone said it was impossible – a major brain surgery and writing the final year graduation exams two months from then – but Tania was determined…
“You can do it!” she would say aloud to herself in the mirror each morning.  Starting with the almond sheera, her everyday routine involved a lot of care, effort, and above all – will power.  She had to do facial physiotherapy exercises twice a day.  She meditated for one hour every evening and listened to devotional music, to rid her mind of those traumatic memories.  She could not read for more than an hour at a stretch, her head ached.  But she never gave up…

Tonight, when she returned to her room after having dinner, she looked at the mirror.  She smiled, and her right cheek hurt once again.  This time, she said, “You did it!”

Stay Happy,

Friday, June 28, 2013


Alright, so I didn't think I'd get to writing my second post so soon, but we'll be eating out got some free time now and here I am!

Today I want to jot down my thoughts and memories about Bappa...Ganapati Bappa:). Every new step in life is taken with the blessings of Bappa and so my first 'real' post too will be about him:)

Although I am not a Hindu by religion, I have immense faith in Bappa, and in fact I've seen so over the years that he is one such God who is adored by one and all.

I pray to him every day, and am surrounded by him all the time. He's placed in our pooja room at home, on top of the entrance to our kitchen, on the nameplate outside, on my office desk and lastly in my purse! Yes, that's right, I carry a very small, silver idol of Ganesha with me all the time -- it was the first gift from Nikhanj (my dear husband) after our engagement. I was so touched on seeing the gift that I cried, it was just...perfect!

Another experience that I want to share is about Siddhi Vinayak. Mums (my mother) is from Mumbai...and yes, I forgot to say she is a staunch believer in Bappa and it is from her that I have developed this bonding with every summer hols when we went to Mumbai, we surely visited the Siddhi Vinayak temple - a ritual we follow till date whenever we go to Mumbai. Besides the route from Dadar station to my grandpa's home, the route to Siddhi Vinayak is the only one I've managed to remember in all these years and numerous visits to Mumbai (yes, am pathetic at geography and directions). And the reason is that visiting the Siddhi Vinayak temple is something I've always looked forward to!

It is not an act of superstition, it is something I immensely feel happy about. It is such a happy experience each time we go there, what strikes me most is this amazing unifying effect that Siddhi Vinayak has on the people. Forget refusing, the taxi driver's face lights up upon hearing that you want to go to Siddhi Vinayak, and if it happens to be his 'boni' (the first ride of the day), then it's as if you've made his day!
Then comes the queue to the temple, I have always observed that you will find here people from all religions, all walks of life, age groups, socio-economic status...all seeking Bappa's darshan and blessings. The aura and the vibes around's fascinating, you have to experience it to believe it.
And then the final experience once you are inside the temple, there will be some rushing by the police/guards to hurry the darshan, but the idol isn't placed like at the end of some long passage, the broad enclosure
assures proximity and gives decent time to view the idol. You just smile when you see the idol, which is in fact true for any of Bappa's idol, he has such a calming effect.
And once outside the enclosure, you can sit for any amount of time in the surrounding hall/stairs. And that is also where the idol of Oondhar Mama (in Gujarati, Oondhar means mouse and Mama means maternal uncle. Mouse is Ganesha's mount, and is fondly addressed as Oondhar Mama) is placed. So, it is so believed, that whatever wish you want Bappa to fulfil, you whisper it into Oondhar Mama's ear and he will convey it to Bappa - as I child when Mums first told this to me, I was wonder-struck and immediately did so enthusiastically - and that feeling stays to this day. My mother looks on smiling how every time, even after all these years, I go whisper in a child-like manner in Oondhar Mama's ear:)

Well obviously, one post is by no means enough and I can simply go on and on about Bappa, but time to sign off now. But feeling really happy after writing this post:)...thanks Bappa for being with me always!

Stay Happy,

Thursday, June 27, 2013

My First Blog and First Post!

Feels great:)...there are many things that I want to do in particular wish list, although some I've been wanting to do since I was a learning to play the day am sure I will!

But there are some others which fascinate me randomly, maybe linger for a while and then get lost in my daily milieu...having a blog is one such thing that I've been bumping into time and again...and so today here it is!

I am not sure what I'll write about or how my blog will take shape...but I am almost always thinking about so many things at the same time!! maybe this would be a good idea to pen down those thoughts...hence I chose the name happyjottings for my blog's URL.

So that's it for today, gotta go make dinner now.

Stay happy,