Monday, June 30, 2008

My wooden Rocking Horse..Down the memory lane

This weekend I started to look into my old papers to weed out the trash that accumulated over the years. After discarding so many old bank statements, bills and letters I came across an old envelope. I opened it and found a very old photograph of 54 years,yellowed with age.

It was a picture of me at my maternal grand mother's home, happily riding away on a wooden rocking horse. This photograph triggered my journey down the memory lane. It brought back memories of my late maternal grand mother, a pleasant old lady with a smile and a ready repartee on her lips. I still remember her snow white curly hair, umpteen stories she told me and the pure, unadulterated love she used spread on her grandchildren.It also reminded me the carefree childhood I had under the umbrella of caring grand mothers, both paternal and maternal. I never saw my grand fathers on either side. They remained as serious,stiff sepia photographs adorning the walls.

Well, coming to the rocking horse, it seems that my grand mother bought it as a present for me and it was there for a long time in her house, subsequently carrying my brothers and sisters, whenever we visited her house.

Wooden rocking horses I feel, nurture the fantasy in children assisted by innumerable mythological stories narrated by grannies. A child oblivious of tomorrow, happily rides away on his wooden horse assuming himself as a prince. The parents visualize the future equestrian prowess of their son. It is altogether a different situation if he turns out to be a betting man! It may be quixotic to recollect these things now but it was a major attraction in those days to all the visiting cousins, who also wanted a ride on the stallion. I still remember my possessiveness in those days.

For many years I was thinking that a wooden horse is a toy of the orient, but Google dispelled the myth by showing the images of wooden rocking horses of the entire globe. Each has a design of it's own. every craftsman added an improvisation of his own to make the ride comfortable and enjoyable. My son with his girl friend

I still graphically remember the smile on my wife's lips, when I told her that I would buy a rocking horse for my son. My late father, who was listening to the conversation coolly went and brought a swank sports car model for his first grand son to ride! Obviously he was more adaptable to the winds of change than me!!

That brings up the question. Should I buy a wooden rocking horse for my grandson as and when he arrives? (By the way, My son is yet to get married!)

Cheers and keep smiling!!!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Grit and Determination..A real life story.

As I cruise through various blogs everyday, I come across one special character emerging loud and clear! The grit and determination with which people are facing their issues and coming on top of them. As blog after blog passes across the monitor, I see the pain and ordeals that find their way out through the blogs. While reading today's news, I came across a story from Calcutta, which could be an inspirational one from real life for many of my fellow bloggers.

It is the saga of a poor girl who many years ago found it very difficult to continue her studies due to pecuniary problems.It is the kindness of her teachers which helped her to continue her journey and achieve something that makes all of us believe in human kindness and human determination. This is the story of Ms. Nirjharani Chakraborty, who, to continue her studies had to work in her school as a sweeper at the age of 15. She used to clean the cups and plates,sweep the floor of the class rooms and various other jobs. She could do all these things as the teachers of her school found her good in her studies and helped as she could not afford the fees and books. They paid for her food,fees,books and also provided her a job in the school as a group'D'employee. She on her part continued the education and went on to become a clerk in the same school , then a teacher, and Principal of a women's college in Calcutta. Her latest achievement is to become an MLA (Member Of Legislative Assembly)in West Bengal Assembly!

This story really appealed to me as a sign Of her determination.Hope it appeals to you also.

Bye and keep smiling till next time.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Canine Call

The early morning tranquility is shattered by the incessant barking of the canine community of my colony. Unable to lie in the bed because of the disturbing ruckus, I woke up and went into the balcony drowsily.I found a battery of strays barking at a van and a couple of corporation workers, maintaining a safe distance. The pet dogs of the colony also joined the medley showing their solidarity with their unfortunate and orphan strays.

Intrigued by the cacophony, I went down and saw that a group of them took shelter inside the compound of a neighbour, whose wife wears a Blue cross badge and takes it on her to be the sole protector of these species. The duty bound corporation workers met more than their match in this women. There were raised voices all around and I had to walk across the road and explain to her that these dogs will not be laid to sleep but will be let lose again on the poor citizens after sterilization to control their population. It took another couple of senior citizens to placate the lady and allow the workers into the compound to round off the strays in question. Till then bolstered by the feminine support, they were at their wits end to understand the sudden change in heart of their protector. Casting a pathetic look at her, they were taken away by the corporation staff in the van, which has a bold Red letters sprawling over it's sides , proclaiming that it belongs to 'Stray dog population control Team"(?) in the vernacular.

Talking about canine lovers, It is understandable to have pets, which in some cases ( or is it in most cases?) lead a life that is the envy of human beings. You shower love on them and they reciprocate with pure ,unadulterated love. But,the inclusion of these shaggy strays which are a menace with dreadful disease like rabies etc., is beyond my comprehension. There were many instances of these dogs attacking and killing infants in the outskirts of the city. I think then that these activists take things a little too far.

But again I have come across a news item ( not one but two)that baffled me. A man married a stray dog in Chennai!! And second item is that a 7-year old girl in eastern India also married a dog! In both the cases it is to ward off the evil eye!!

Can you believe it? No? Then see these snaps.

Well,enough of the canine talk( or is it bark?) and their weddings.
Bye and keep smiling till next time....

Friday, June 13, 2008

Blog, Browse and Blog.............

Blogging is new to me and I am an irregular one to start with. But as I started browsing through different blogs, I am carried away through an array of emotions. Love, happiness, courage, bravery, sentiment, inventions and what not? The entire spectrum of human sentiments is presented in this medium representing each and every hue and shade of the human nature.It leaves you emotionally drained, when you go through some posts, while it lifts up your spirits through the other.

The thoughts expressed by some bloggers reassure you that the reason still exists within the world. The issues raised by some makes your own issues so minute before their issues.There are some,who are braving out in the face of severe odds, which makes you to cheer them up for their courage.

There are many, who pursue this medium for purging out their hearts and make them light. Yet there are some proud parents, show casing their little ones. It makes me happy to see the wrinkled and dimpled faces of innocence.

A place where you find many faceless friends , who take pride in your posts and you reciprocate with the same enthusiasm.

All together a heady experience and I am really loving this activity.

Long Live Blogging!!!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Of Sights and Sounds..

It happened when I was about to caress the golden locks of the blond mermaid on the lonely picturesque island. All my life, I wanted to touch the mermaids, but this is the first time I came close to caressing her golden tresses. It was persistent and was invading into the thick fog of my sleep to scare away the mermaid and put an abrupt end to my tryst with her. I cussed as I could not locate the mobile to cut off the 'jal tarang' music, I kept as an alarm tone.

I finally cut off the alarm and stretched lazily to savor the early morning sounds. The chirping and twittering of the birds. I think Banglore is one place, where you can still hear the busy birds in the early morning despite the invasion of the concrete jungle in to the pristine nature. As I lazily tried come into the day, I wondered about the mermaid and remembered the umpteen travel brochures I have been going through. No doubt,I was in close proximity with the mermaid, but I do not remember the 'Fishy Odour' that is associated with all marine creatures!

While listening to the pleasant cacophony of the birds, I peeped out of the window to see the birds of many sizes busily hopping on the Neem tree. I, not being an ornithologist, can not differentiate between the birds, but one thing is certain. They will make your day a bright one with their exuberance exhibited during their early morning rounds.

But of late, I am missing one bird, which even my limited knowledge of ornithology vouches for!

This is one bird , which is with me since my childhood.It is also a paramount example of the social bonding, which we people lack. If per chance a crow is either electrocuted or dies of any other cause, all the remaining crows gather and sing an obituary fit for a politician. However much you try to shoo them off, they will not leave till they finish the program.I still vividly remember that whenever a crow crows at my house, my mother used to say that some relatives are coming. I still do not understand the relation between the relatives and the crow (Is there any pun in this belief?). When some one dies, the funeral program includes feeding of crows also. But of late, I fail to see the crow in the urban scenario. If they vanish and become extinct, what will happen to all the souls that want to eat the last offering of their loved ones through the majestic black bird? How will we know the arrival of all the relatives that may come to our house?

Cow is another animal that is sacred to all Indians, as we wrote in so many essays in our childhood. But this sacred animal is also so lightly cared for. We always learnt that Cow's milk is the good supplement for those unlucky children, who could not get sufficient milk from their mothers. But all we get now is the local dairy milk, which may or may not contain cow's milk but a cocktail of Bufallow's and some other animals like goat or in some areas, camel also.I am reminded of my personal experience, while I was working at Hyderabad. On a Sunday morning, I came out to see when someone was shouting and selling something. I called him and inquired about his merchandise. I was surprised to know that he is selling Donkey's milk. My friends later told me that in rural Telangana, people believe that if an infant is fed with Donkey's milk, his immunity and his intelligence will improve!! Some asinine intelligence, it must be!!!.

One thing that baffled me time and again is why all the women activists concentrate on conserving stray dogs instead of a sacred animal like a cow.

Talking about the stray dogs , I am really facing a problem with these stray dogs of late in our colony.We have an army of strays and most of my friends are afraid of going for early morning walks as they bark and attempt to attack them.

Talking about the dogs and donkey's remind me of Cleopatra, who, I read somewhere used to bathe with donkey's milk!!

The beauty that set so many hearts aflame was maintained with ass's milk!!!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Adieu to IPL and Cheer leaders !!

At last the saga of great Indian Premier league came to an end. We all will miss the daily dose of cricket excitement. Full marks for the organizers for making this truly a smashing event. We have witnessed a mega opening at Bangalore and a matching closing ceremony at Mumbai, where the Bollywood starlets came on stage to gyrate to the Bollywood songs, belted over the speakers.Even Salman Khan gave a performance!

We will also miss the cheerleaders, who entertained the crowds with their performances in almost all the matches.The cheerleaders have raised a big issue with their costumes. The moral brigade grabbed the opportunity to impose their dress code on these phirangi girls! Match after match, we saw them adding pieces of clothing to their costume. But, I feel the beauty of these cheer leaders lies in the brevity of their costume. When the additional clothes were imposed on them, they looked completely out of place and looked more like the scarecrows in an agricultural field cheering the birds, instead of shooing them off! We miss them and hope they will return in the next year also with some designer additions to their wardrobe, to cheer the spectators and soothe the moral brigade soldiers as well!

Well, the drama associated with the IPL is in no way less than the umpteen saas- bahu soaps watched on the small screen!It has its quota of controversies, emotional drama, sentiments and tears. And it certainly helped the TRPs of Sony Max, which is grinning all the way to bank.Ravi Shastri asked all right questions (while fishing for the compliments) and the players gave all politically and religiously correct answers.I think that the sole loser is Harbhajan Singh.

Well,we are looking forward to IPL next session and Cheer girls eagerly.

Till then we have to make do with ICL matches and their cheerleaders, I suppose!(SIGH...)

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Fragrances and A Trip of Nostalgia

After a long self-imposed sabbatical from blogging and net, I started today as the urge to express became so strong and compelling in me that I felt as if I am splitting at the seams.

It so happened that I got a mail from someone with an Email ID called CutiCura, which evoked so many nostalgic memories in me. That name brought back long forgotten memories of a unique fragrance associated with my childhood. I had an English teacher in my primary school, who used to wear this particular talcum powder, with a unique perfume and the whole class used to know that she is entering the class, with the help of this strong fragrance. After so many years, I am reminded of it just by the mention of the name. I do not know what happened to that brand as I do not see that brand name among the trillions of brands constantly vying for our attention in every possible medium.

Speaking about forgotten brands, I recollect a brand of face cream called, "Basant Malathi", which was a favorite of my late mother, from whom we used to get the wonderful fragrance of this cream. It was more of a solution than a cream. That also seems to have perished in the competition .

similarly, there was another name that comes to mind,"Kashmir Snow", which also disappeared from the cosmetics arena.

There used to be another strong perfume which evokes nostalgic memories.The name is "Kunega Marikolundu". The manufacturers used to adopt a marketing technique; they used to spray the perfume on special issues of some weeklies (periodicals, they are called now-a-days) and all the readers are treated to the strong scent of this perfume, whenever they turn the pages of the book. This brand is extinct now, I believe.

But to day I see many fine brands, which when sprayed upon, attract bevy of beautiful nymphets to one's anatomical part (depending upon the site where the perfume is sprayed upon).Yes, there are also some brands of men's under ware, which wake up the animal and arouse the passion in the fairer sex!!

Now, that's enough of perfumes, fragrances and nostalgia.

See you soon again. Keep smiling!!!