I admire Nina Gupta. For she is one woman, who is her own person, an individual, a human being. It is rare for a woman to be that. For almost always, a woman is either someone’s daughter, and then someone’s wife. In some cultures, a woman is not even a person, a human-being; she is just someone to be suffered and dominated and hidden and used as a vessel to bear children and serve the man. The more “progressive” societies or cultures have not progressed much either; as far as development of a woman as a complete, independent individual goes; as far as “empowerment” of women goes. Women still tag themselves with their husband’s name. The more adventurous types retain their “maiden” names, but still hyphenate and let the husband’s name define them. I say that they have not progressed because they still need that support. Even though many of these women are financially independent, they need the support of the husband’s name to feel secure, emotionally secure, secure in this (man’s) society; although there are equal numbers of women here.
What’s in a name!?! A lot. Everything for some (women). They’d rather have the husband’s name, even though the husband may be absent from the marriage.
And that is why I get quizzical looks (lessor now, thankfully, than about 20 years back) when I mention the subject (to a woman) of giving their child their (last) name. And I give an equally quizzical look back. Many women are just bullied into naming their child what their husband’s or husband’s family want the little ones to be named; many don’t (won’t) even think about it, as, well, what?? What are you even talking about?
I don’t know Nina Gupta (personally). But what she did was, is, admirable; she is her own person, an individual. Something most women are not. She gave her child her name, and look sisters, she survived. As a matter of fact, she is doing just fine.
Wake up women, dear sisters, take what is yours, starting with your names, your identities. Don’t give up, do not give in.
Just FYI, I gave my child my name. This was one thing I was sure about since I was a little girl myself.
As originally posted on my other blog, Here to Help.
ok, so, after whining since forever about no good massage places around, i decided to take things in my own two deprived of hand-lotion for quite some time now hands. so i went to this little corner salon, which is ok for quick cleaning and washing etc. but i just wanted a nice head massage and i thought one can’t really go wrong with that. well, i went wrong with that. they assigned this two-bit kid to me, all fidgety and not-interested at all in what he was doing. i tried to keep my eyes closed and just enjoy some finger movement on my head, at least feel my hair being tossed about. when i couldn’t, at all, i opened my eyes and realised why. there he was, that dumb-***k, with his hands on my head and his eyes intently scrutinizing something in the far corner of the room. no wonder. i had almost given up hoping when he moved away briefly and came back with this machine thingie. and whatdya know, a vibrator for the head. and wow…boy…could it vibrate. he put the thing on his hand like a glove and when he kept that hand on my head…wow…boy…could it vibrate. and i couldn’t enjoy that either cos i kept thinking about somehow taking that thing home and putting it to better use.
anyways, i got out of there quite dissatisfied and “wanting more”, and i remembered seeing this nice looking thai foot spa close by, further up the road and decided to give it a shot. that was the best decision i made in quite some time. after the awesome pépé in auroville, the one with the magic, healing hands, today i found true joy and happiness at the sabai foot spa in juju, with the sweet akhui. :) though i started with the most basic foot massage as i just wanted to check the place out, 10-15 mins into the massage i knew i have found “the place” and got myself an upgrade. wow…how that sweet looking guy twisted and turned me then, after lovingly massaging and stretching my legs into soft, cocooned, warm, radiating individuals. i had died and gone to heaven. :) at one point i was pretty sure that he was gonna break my neck…but i was relaxed, and ready for it. and he didn’t; he just rolled it around and about, moving to my back, and yes, head too…wow, may everyone in this universe be blessed with such bliss. thank you universe… :)
the world ( or the world around me) seems to be full of mostly two types of people. those, who are F-U-L-L of themselves, and those who are really desperately trying to ape those who are full of themselves. where are the people, the real people, who are themselves .. ?
the lost race…who is not at all sure of who, or what it constitutes. who doesn’t know where it is headed, doesn’t even care. the clan of the good, the good natured, the always smiling…
i miss you my brothers and sisters…come and get me…i am waiting…
wow…the new year, 2015, has started. i had been eagerly waiting for this day, jan 1. i had planned a couple of things for today. but all i did was sleep. :) i ate and i slept. oh well, that’s great too.
this new year, i wish that everyone (including me) would be just a little more considerate, a little more thoughtful. eons back, i was sitting with two people; two very loved people. and one had recently chosen the path of spiritualism, discovering the importance of ‘me’, and ‘i’, and how it is important that to truly discover that ‘me’, that ‘i’, one needs to surpass other people’s expectations and focus on the ‘me’, the ‘i’; was what he had started preaching to one and all. and then the other person, in the picture, needed to go somewhere, and she requested that he comes along. i remember that with some annoyance in his voice (or maybe i just felt it, the annoyance) he had said no to the requested and yet again pressed upon the fact that he needed to first consider his needs over the needs of those around him, to reach greater spiritual heights. the girl just sat there, feeling sad cos she really wanted to go out with him. that pierced my heart, that forlorn look in her eyes. i should’ve told him them, what i am expressing here now that every now-and-then, forgetting that ‘me’, the ‘i’, and doing something for someone else is just going to give you that extra push into the realm of the enlightened.
and thus this wish for all of you my loved ones. be thoughtful, be considerate. if you see or meet someone that needs a friend, be their friend. it’s not like you need to spend hours on that activity, or even go out more often than you do; maybe they just need to talk with someone every once-in-a-while, or maybe they just need that assurance that they have a friend. go ahead, be a friend. or someone just needs a smile, or an understanding nod of approval. go ahead, give it, it might make their day, or week. even if you don’t have 1000s, but giving a 100 to someone might mean the world to them; go ahead, give them that 100; it’ll add tons to you good karmic weight. :)
this year, go ahead and give… :)
i haven’t been writing regularly of late cos i have been feeling quite quiet inside. also, nothing really is happening. what with my knee swollen and ankle hurting and overall pains since the little Kodi adventure i have been kinda stuck to staying at home (or what home is aajkal), and life has generally been a peaceful, placid lake; no uthal-puthal. so much so that the brain too has been relaxed and is not coming up with things to say. there has been no (brain) chatter, mindless, mindful, none.
a couple of days back, i went for a job interview–my second one since the time i got laid-off in may 2013. and like the one i gave last year, this too went pretty well, and no, not just i think so, it did. and exactly like the previous one, they never got back to me. i am telling you dear folks and friends, the universe really does wish for me to not work a regular 9-5. i could write more; i am writing more. but to write something substantial, i will have to (need to) change myself. I will have to (need to) start planning and work towards a composition. as of now i just sit and start typing away, hence i only mostly write short stories. till now i have just been satisfying myself with quickies. i need to (have to) start getting comfortable with the idea of something … long-term. hmmm…
i am a bhatakti hui naav, in a large, large, un-s-pacific ocean. no land in sight; no hope for, or wish to, sight any. like a big, heavy camel, bloated with all that i have caged and am now gripping tightly within , lost, deep in the vast, global-scale sahara (mera sahara, bus ye sahara), just walking around, imprinting on the soft sands, letting the hot, harsh winds singe the soft skin of the cheeks. oh hold on, wait, camels don’t have soft-skinned cheeks…heeheehee!! :)
…who needs moss, rolling is fun… :D
bhatakna and lost do not carry negative connotation here…
in other news, i have (yet again) started having paranthas every morning, my favourite breakfast … soon will the come the day now that i will deeply regret it… sighhhh …
and … hehehe … tried to pass off cy as an adult (almost) for an A movie (ugly; really wanted to watch it) … didn’t work. as much as she tried to “stand tall” and look serious, the guy at the ticket counter said, “ma’am, inko allow nahi karengey” :P :)
kabhi tumney apney ghar se nikala thaa, keh key kee ab tumhari zindagi mein koi aur hai. aaj mein tumhey apni zindagi se nikalti hun, ab meri zindagi koi aur hai…
do you decide and live your life; or do you not decide and (just) live. are you a planner (when it comes to life), or do you take each day as it comes. i personally, am not a planner. thought i plan well, and in ahead, for trips and all, or parties, or any other event(s); but in life, i normally just live each day as it comes. if i have tried planning, kabhi, it has rarely worked out, and i had been left with no choice but to ‘embrace’, and embrace i did, and felt happier. so it has been ok overall, till now.
i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, like the pristine water flowing down the streams, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, like the cool breeze dancing among the trees, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, like the fresh green leaves stretching the first stretch, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, i’m beautiful, like the first rays of the sun touching a radiant face…
before someone else loves us, it is imperative that we love ourselves. a big part of loving ourselves is ensuring that we look good. and by looking good, i do not mean going crazy over clothes, or over make-up. by looking good i mean looking well taken care of; daily, loving, and thorough, cleanses take care of that. just like you have and love a child, you take care of her/him, groom her/him, do stuff to ensure that she/he is happy; the same goes for your body, your face. a daily scrub and massage will tell your face, your hands, your feet, your body, that you love them, and they in turn will love you back and shine and radiate happiness. if you don’t do that, and just give them the regular wash, not thinking about it, not doing a little something extra every now-and-then, they will feel neglected and hence look that way too. spend some time on yourself, look into the mirror, appreciatively, and smile; be glad about that face…love it, and it will love you back, and thus you will create a love tornado, all around you, sucking in more and more love from all around… :)
and always, always try and use natural stuff that you can find around your neighbourhood and/or kitchen. for example, why wash your face with a neem product that has gazillion chemicals and hardly any neem when you can actually go out and simply get neem leaves and bark. you’ll find multiple ways to make a face wash, or scrub or anything on the internet. same gors with moisturisers, they are very easy to make at home; pinterest zindabad, for DIY recipes.
~as originally published on Here to Help.
paison ka haath pakad ke, kahin aur nikal liye
jungle mein ek kutiya sooni baithee rahi intezaar mein
…to the dreams that i forgot, when i got my 1st job…i just wanted to make money then…
the universe, this nature, life is not (always) about choice, it is (mostly) about flow. let it…
As originally posted on Here to Help.
my favourite drink is coconut water, or maybe nimbu pain. it’s definitely nimbu pain when it’s hot and i am thirsty; but at such times, my parched throat welcomes coconut water just as heartily. i also just love sugarcane juice. oh…oh…and a GREAT GREAT GREAT fan of Neera; something like coconut water (comes from a similar tall tree; is much lighter, whiter, and sugar sweet) absolutely yum. it’s something i found only in pune. after sundown it ferments and becomes alcoholic. earlier in the day i was thinking that it’d be nice to live in a world where one could just phone and order sex like one does a pizza. it’d be cheaper than the stupid pizza :P
in an ideal world (my version of it) people would still live in small communities, like the jungle tribes, and those who don’t want to would be free (in every way–morally, emotionally, socially etc) to roam around, live wherever, however. like right now, i just wanna live with my parents, however irritating, annoying they may be. i know they need someone, that that someone would rather be me, before that someone starts wondering why in the name of heaven are they putting up with this shit. most women (in india) can’t do that, cos they live with their husband’s family, a life of submission and quiet servitude. and if their parents do not have a son, they end up living alone. or even for the guy, it’s a pain, trying to constantly bridge the gap between the mom and wife, as in common in most households. one never gets to truly live one’s life.
living in a small community is quite agreeable then. everyone taking care of everyone. all old people, all kids, everyone’s responsibility.
everything comes back in a circle; ghumman-gheri; whirlpool. everyone’s circling. round and round. around something. around nothing. and we can’t stop; kinetic force in play. pure physics. we keep getting pushed and keep moving, we keep moving and keep getting pushed. it never stops. it will never stop. we can sit back and enjoy the ride though. is all we can do. go woo hooooo!!!
some of my favourite foods:
jeera rice – black chana
chholey bhaturey (crazy about it)
this veg special you get at the Zen restaurant (can nought place, new delhi)
gobi parantha loaded with makkhan
sarson ka saag and makki roti
makki roti infused with methi leaves with (milk) cream
The ‘development’ that we see all around us today; the “modern” science and technology, the cities with their shine, the automobiles and flying planes, and all of this hustle-bustle. What has all this development got us? What? Has it been of any use to us at all, us as human race? It has just taken us further apart from each other, so so far away from our own selves. It has taken us away from simplicity, from humility, from everything that is good for us, nature, our own nature, our mother Earth. “God” gave us humans brains, or if you don’t wish to use the term God, let’s say that we got this opportunity, a great opportunity, a huge potential for development; spiritual development. And what did we do? We listened to nothing but our greed and got ourselves a lot of material development. Destroying ourselves, this planet, nature, everything. What have we done!?! We’ve come so far ahead, down the wrong path. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
On a different note, while grocery shopping, fill your cart with packaged goods and you’ll pay in thousands, the stuff will last for a few days, adding nothing of value to your health and well-being. On the other hand, fill your cart with fruits and vegetables and greens, these good things will last for more than a week, will do loads of good for your health and overall well-being, and will cost you only in hundreds. Good for your pocket, good for your health. Then, why…?? For…”taste”…your tongue? Seriously…? …and you call that development…huh…
~As originally posted on Here to Help.
today i will talk about rangeela, the movie, but not the movie, its songs. every time i listen to rangeela songs, it takes me someplace else. someplace very beautiful, green, cool, and moist. some place in the mountains, in a time when i was still…young(er), and deliriously happy, drunk on youth, and youthfulness. i was happily employed at NIIT. at NIIT we were all a bunch of spirited young people, floating on clouds, hurtling ourselves to (artistic) greatness at full speed, full-steam. most of us were passion-driven, spending most time at office, happily, NIIT extricating every last bit of juice that it could from us. but we didn’t mind, we were happy to produce, to create, to think, think new worlds and wonders. we were ready to, and did, take on anything.
in that vigour and joy, mind open to ever-opening new vistas, i once answered a telephone call. someone had called from another department, asking about some paper; i cannot recall at all what it was. all i remember was that the person on the line said that it needs to happen (whatever it was that was supposed to happen) before a particular date, as on that date (or maybe the next day) they are going out. i asked where? and i was told that the entire team was going to nainital. and i asked, just like that (JLT :) ), can i come? and that person said yes, as long as i paid my due. thankfully, they had a spare seat on the mini-bus.
and there i was, on the designated morning, with my little bag, ready to head out to nainital with this “team” of strangers. it turned to be one of the best, most well-enjoyed, and memorable trips of my life. that trip to nainital with 18 strangers. or maybe i was the 18th, i can’t recall now. :)
well, someone had brought along this “cassette” of the songs of a new movie that had just come out; rangeela. the weather was awesome, what they call ‘sexy’ in the delhi lingo. cloudy, cool, a bit moist, the amazing, beautiful mountain roads, and the songs of rangeela. that’s how we spent the next few days, roaming around in nanital, and then one day visiting all the other ‘taals’ around. and now every time i hear rangeela songs (esp tanha tanha yahan pe jeena) i close my eyes and i can still feel the cool cool mountain air rushing through my hair. :)
i remember my first crush. i don’t remember “him”, not the name, or even the face, but i remember the crush, the feeling, if you could call it that. :) i must’ve been in grade 2, maybe 1. i often used to “fantasise” we standing in a line, in school, and him fainting and falling in my lap, and i nursing him. :)
Nope, I am not an expert, just a regular Joe-ann who thinks she is a know-it-all after having just one. :D
1. Try and not treat them as kids; treat them as people, with an understanding that they have a limited (than your maybe) brain capacity and other faculties.
2. As a rule, ALWAYS smile when looking at them, esp when they are babies. :)
3. If you disagree with your partner/spouse, do not disagree/fight in front of the kids. Try and remain calm till such time that you are away from the kids (this might help with the situation overall) and then work towards resolving the issue.
4. Be honest, ALWAYS. Always give your kids open, honest, frank answers. Be it about God, relationships, other people, relatives, sex, anything; be positive, be honest. If you think they might not understand, start your sentence thus, “you might not understand…” More often than not, they will lose interest and just drift away.
5. Violence/anger is never the answer; but it helps to show that you mean business. Decide on how far you’d go without traumatising the child. Yes, they will definitely be traumatised if you shout. (I know, cos’ I did, and till date I haven’t been able to forgive myself.) Do make an angry face, a very angry face, and stand firm; they will bow down and tow the line. Once they know you mean business, they will not test your patience.
Try the ‘if you’re good to mama, mama’s good to you’ rule; if they are being naughty, do take away (or threaten to) what they love the most. But if you have already established a good rapport, it would rarely come to this.
6. As a rule, always say ‘yes’. :) And then when you say ‘no’, it’ll be heard. Little things hardly matter, do give in, it’s alright.
7. Curb your own habits to match what you preach to your kids. They don’t follow what they hear from your mouth; they follow what they see you doing. (less TV, more reading etc.)
8. Make it a point to take a holiday with the kids every now-and-then. It is a very important and effective bonding mechanism.
9. At least once a day, devote a time to the kids; be there 100%.
10. Follow a healthy regime, esp food-wise. DO NOT introduce junk foods before the age of 5-6 years. I see a lot of parents feeding Mc -stuff to babies; it is not right for the small child; do not do it. With kids, each meal they have should be packed with nutrition.
11. Breastfeed your child, if you can, at least for the first year. Nothing compares to mother’s milk; it is nutritious and helps build the tiny tot’s immune system.
12. As early as they can, make them do their own chores; like, fold their clothes, clean their room, gather their toys etc. DO NOT let them order/boss you around. Start sweetly, like when they are little and you’re folding the clothes, invite them to help you, and then give them a treat for helping. Yes, quite like a puppy. :)
13. Don’t push them to do things they don’t want to do. There is a big difference in a healthy persuasion and downright pushing/forcing.
14. Be ok with it, if they do not agree with your point of view. Rather, it is sign of maturity and an independent mind.
15. Talk to them as much as you can; good communication is half the battle won.
16. Always have an abundance of I LOVE YOUs. :)
~As originally posted on Here to Help.
the entire day is nothing but a long, sometimes short, wait for cyra to come back. and it’s not just now; i was like this even when i was working a regular job. i used to spend all day looking forward to the time when i’d go back and hold her in my arms and love her, and then maybe go out for a walk, or out somewhere, or maybe look into her schoolwork. it’s like silly love all over again; i am stupidly obsessed with the object of my desire. :) she is the sole purpose of my life, source of all happiness and joy, source of light and life. sighhh… :)
each moment that spend holding her and loving her is the happiest moment of my life. <3
i have just finished reading ‘mamas ka hans’ by amritlal nagar (pronounced naagar). really nice read; thoroughly enjoyed it. it is a fictional life-story of the great poet tulsidas. a speculative tale written in a most gripping manner. i enjoy reading in hindi.
i have now started ‘Gora’, by rabindranath tagore. the translation is not that great, but the story, so far, is good, and it has kept me glued to the book. but i can so imagine/visualise the bengali characters, speaking bangla. it makes me wish i was living in kolkata, surrounded by good-looking, deep, intelligent dhoti-clad men. yum… :) i love guys in dhoti kurtas, cottons… :)
We got it all wrong. In our arrogance, of course we claimed ourselves to be the superior species; all other animals, insects and the like are inferior. That we have a right to kill and maim and torture them, the other species, in the name of food, or entertainment, or even for no reason at all. Imagine, crabs are boiled alive. Why? So they taste good. I can’t even imagine.
Some of those who believe in incarnations believe that human life is the last and the toughest to get to and is achieved only after “suffering” as other animals and birds and insects and various other species. All bull I say. We, the humans suffer the most, consciously, sub(un)consiously. Animals are the truly enlightened. They don’t “think”, they just naturally flow. Nature, the “uni”verse, God, has made it easy for them. They do, just what they need to. It’s us, the cursed race, who are given a “think-pot” and enough stupidity to last a life-time. :)
As originally posted on Here to Help.
my life is an open book. and all its pages are empty.
i love coconut trees. i can spend all day, all the time, forever, just looking at them, lying down, or sitting somewhere. that was the one thing i loved about where we lived in auroville (a little north of pondicherry); the mud road to our home was lined with coconut trees. so tall, their shiny leaves always coochie-cooing with the breeze. maybe i was a bird that lived in a coconut tree once, cos i love heights too. and they are so, so tall; the coconut trees.
and i love tender green coconuts, drinking their water, sometimes munching on the white “cream”. and i love dishes made with coconut milk or dry-cooked veggies with grated coconut. and i just love coconut oil that i sometimes use as a moisturiser. coconut, you are so good. :)