Saturday, May 31, 2014

(E)ating Alone

There is saying that Eat as if everyone is watching you and Dance as if no one is. The first makes one conscious of the amount being consumed and the latter makes one footloose and fancy free. I do both as if the whole world is watching me. It does not help me in the dancing department since I become very shy. I wish I could enjoy and get into moving and shaking as easily as I see some others do. I am also very shy of eating alone in public places. I do not feel as if the whole world is watching me when I am eating in the privacy of my home - which does not help since I am not at all mindful of the calories being consumed. But God forbid if I have to eat alone at a workplace eatery or restaurant.

I am not sure how and where this started. The earliest I can remember is when I was in hostel. In the first year, we were a group of 17 girls who used to stay in a dorm. There would be some one or the other who could give me company during the meals. When we moved to rooms, I had 2 other girls living with me. Since they were from the core branch, their timings of classes were different from mine. We could never have our lunches together. Dinners, we were a troupe. Ashu who was the one I gelled most with, did not have her meals at the hostel since she resided with her local guardian. I have another idiosyncrasy of not being comfortable eating with any person. I should have a rapport and a bonding with him/her. There were sometimes when I had to eat lunch alone. I am not sure why, but I was super uncomfortable doing so. I opted for eating much later when the cafeteria would be deserted. Thank fully I became fast friends with Basu. She was a wonderful, funny gal who had the most frank nature. She was a silent companion and comforter for me. She and I developed a routine, and we  used to wait  on each other no matter what the other person's routine. Soon by our final year Ashu was way more regular in the hostel and I never had to eat alone in the hostel ever again. I remember our final meal in the cafeteria, Basu burst out crying and Ashu and I followed cue. It was the very last time we broke bread together. It has been a decade and it would be the stuff of dreams if we could ever have a meal as a trio. 

When I started working in my first company, I had no companions(Seems like the theme of my life). I had no projects either and had to spend most of my time sitting in the library. The librarian was a lovely middle aged lady, who too had the similar trait of not liking having her meals alone. I started going for lunches with her, but soon realized that our rhythms were different. She had her food way later ( which was more due to the duration she had to keep the library open and hence could leave for lunch at 1400 only), and she used to take a long time to decide, eat very slowly and later crib about what she chose (I some how do not like criticizing the food one eats. Once in a while its ok, but on a daily basis is a bit annoying. ) I  started having lunches on my own. I hated it. So I used to go at 1430 - an annoyingly late time taking into consideration the early breakfast,  which consequently wrecked havoc on my gastro-intestinal system. My next work place was very open. Every one minded their own business and was very cool. There would be tables near the vending machines where I used to have my lunch. One day, a girl came up to me and asked if I had my lunches alone and if she could join me. I said of course! Since there were televisions near by, we did not have to engage in much conversation. In due course a friendship evolved.  We  have been able to keep in touch and have been able to providentially help each other a lot! 

In Chennai, I noticed people eating all by themselves in cafes. I even saw strangers sharing a table if there was a scarcity. I never judged them, but was always amazed by it. Why couldn't I do the same? What was so scary in eating alone for me? It is only eating after all. In the UK, I have seen the practice even more. People sit and surf, read, talk over the phone - all alone. I agree, with some sort of a prop like a book, a phone or a kindle I am much better off eating alone. Still, I would prefer the most remote corner, my back to the entrance and wish no one I know sees me. I have some instances where I have to do so at work, I eat in a rush and beat my retreat. Any day I would prefer eating at my desk - very stealthily :) 

I hope one day I am able to get rid of this weird feature. Do any of you feel the same (I will not be surprised if  the answer is a resounding no :D )  

Friday, May 30, 2014

(D)octors


If you have not read the book by Eric Segal, then pick it up if you get a chance. I used to follow Eric Segal a lot once upon a time. I did enjoy his works. If given a chance now I would not voluntarily pick a book by him, just like I would not pick a book by Nicolas Sparks though  there was a time I quite liked his books. Why am I telling all this when the point I want to write is totally different. *rolls eyes*

Doctors – they have one of the most respected professions in the world. Many a times during my work , when I am really bogged down by the pressure and feel like exploding, I think – I am not a doctor or in the defence services. Lives don’t depend on this bit of code I am working on. Along with doctors I highly rate people who work in defence too. I think it takes a lot to choose a thankless job to protect nameless country men especially in our country. There was a time I wanted to be either a doctor or join the army. I remember my mom and dad having a conversation with me if I was willing to give 5 years for MBBS, 1 for house surgeon-ship, 2 for post graduation (that is the way the course works in India). In total 8 years of my life studying then subjecting myself to the vagaries of job hunt. Having the negligible patience it seemed a very daunting prospect to me while I could visualise my compatriots who would have gone for engineering route rolling in foreign money after 4 years. I even nurtured thoughts of joining the army but Short Service Commission was the only option for women. I would have been able to extend it, but would end up being employed for 8 years tops (As far as I remember that was the advice from a distant uncle who was in the Air Force himself) I had gotten it straight from the horse's mouth! Being jobless would be a nightmare. Hence army was again a road not taken.

Coming back to my original train of thought, doctors have always commanded a lot of respect from me. I have had a lot of interactions with them, some good some not so much. Always I have been stimulated by how much we depend on them.  My sister was born with 2 teeth(Yep! Shes an ajooba :D) One of them was loose. The doctor recommended that it ought to be removed, else there was a risk of it coming off and choking her. All of 4 days old, she was taken to a dentist and her wobbly tooth was extracted. The dentist claimed that he was nervous and she was her youngest patient! The icing on the cake was, he was not a trained dentist- not trained in the conventional sense of the term. He was an apprentice, who graduated into a full dentist in due course by learning on the job. None the less, he was a fantastic doctor (I know dentists are not regarded as 'real' doctors but try living with rotting teeth or paining wisdom teeth or like my sis being 4 days old with a gingerly tooth). He took care of a lot of my teenage teeth problems. He was the disburser of good advice not something that would give him repeat business. I have met  'qualified' dentists who take patients on a joy ride and appreciate his integrity way more.

Did a doctor ever save my life? Yes. When I was 12 years old, I had very high fever. The fever would not subside with ordinary medication. I was prescribed some pills which would sometimes work, but the fever would be back with a vengeance. My dad during those days was doing some research with the local Malaria Research Centre. He decided to take me there, and get a check. Since it was a research centre, there were no doctors there. He took the report to a friend of his who was a pathologist. I will never forget the look on Pramod uncle's eyes when he saw the report, and calmly asked to get me admitted in the Critical Care Unit. I was on intravenous quinine. He took care of everything all around.  It was much later that we came to know that I was infected with cerebral malaria aka brain malaria. I know he was a friend of dad's but he did not owe anything more than the diagnosis. The way he took personal responsibility not only then but in many more occasions for many more people, I am sincerely indebted. He was a gem of a person apart from being a very good doctor. I have met pathologists who are out their depth and make incorrect diagnosis which makes the patient go on a wild goose chase. But with Pramod uncle, you were in safe hands.

2 of my mom's cousins are doctors. After Chiyaa there have been innumerable accounts where I have pestered them with questions and queries. My elder uncle is in the US and is a dad, so he gets bombarded not only with the usual physiological doubts, but also with psychological ones  like how much crying is ok?, is day care good?, how much separation anxiety is tolerable? And you name it. I know all this sounds very silly and any of the grandparents can happily answer. But hearing it from a doctor is way more comforting.

Recently we took Chiyaa to the local dispensary. The usual cough and cold. The doctor checked her and let us go with the prescription. An hour later we got a call from the clinic advising us that she was a bit concerned and would like to have a look again in the presence of a senior doctor. We were flustered and ran back. Both the doctors were very comforting and assured us, all was fine. Being cautious, they recommended we take her to the paediatric ward of the local hospital where a more thorough investigation could be carried out. Chiyaa was not happy with it all, but we were very satisfied with the detailed examination, the x-rays and the final verdict of it being just acute chest infection. They could rule out pneumonia and anything serious which was good news. The doctor need not have taken the personal ownership and gone to such detail. After all, here we do not pay them and are on public health care. I will forever appreciate the personal care and concern they had.

There are junctures in life where a good doctor is a life saver. As they say in our Bollywood movies, Doctor sahib aap to bhagwan ka roop ho!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

(C)offee-Tea

I have waxed lyrical about my infinite love for ginger tea so many times in this space. Any time is tea time for me. When we were kids, my mom was a massive tea drinker. She used to have humungous glasses of tea, glasses as big as beer mugs. She could not function without having her morning cuppa. Then while cooking she used to have one more. Once back home, she used to have a huge glassful again. It was not good tasting either. She would take a little milk, double the quantity of water, one tea spoonful of sugar and 2 tea spoons of dust tea (there is a lot of difference between dust and leaf tea, if we got the latter for her, she used to go crazy). The tea was a bitter concoction that was virtually un-consumable for me. There was one point in time where she switched to black tea with a slice of lemon, and no sugar. She was hard core when it came to the drink. Since she was addicted to tea, her worst fear was the same fate befalling her daughters. As kids, we were attracted to the magnificent aroma. One sip of her tea and we were back to our senses. At my maternal grand mother's place, whenever we went for vacations, tea was a huge ritual. All the aunties and uncles and grand-uncles and grand-aunts would gather around the huge dining table and drink tea while snacks and savouries were passed around. We kids were only allowed to have the biscuits and the 'mixtures' (Mixtures mean a very different thing in India :-) )The closest we were allowed to get to tea was to dip the thin arrow root biscuit or the Milk Bikis in the tea. There was a strange mother-child vis-à-vis aunt-nephew/niece bonding at work there. If the child took the third biscuit to be dipped into the mom's cup, he/she was sure to get an admonition for making the tea cold by 'adulterating' it. That’s when the aunty would come to rescue and offer her tea which would have already been tampered with by her child and hence taken off limits. That would be one scenario where aunty was much better than mummy :)
 
My dad preferred the milder version of tea. It was leaf tea, with a lot of milk, just some water to take care of the evaporation, 2 tea spoonfuls sugar mildly boiled to a light concentration. He used to have his morning tea and one cup in the evening. When my mom started working in a different location, he had to make his own brew. Being the lazy man that he is he struck upon an idea. He decided to transition some tea-making knowledge to his eldest off spring. When he had the first cup of tea, made by me, the comment was – 'This is much better than what your mother makes!' High praise indeed. When I started making the evening tea on a regular basis, I could not stay away from temptation for long. One day I took a sip and it did taste good. Nothing like mom's bitter brew. I made a cup for myself. With biscuit the taste was first class! I offered some to my sister –aged 6 then. Being a true blue foodie, at that early age, she could discern my fantastic skills. Till date dad and sis claim I make the best tea. For that matter even my mil claims to all, that no one can make tea like me. Anyone who comes home is certainly offered some tea made by her daughter in law – whether they liked it or not :P
 
Though the schools of thought when it came to tea were so different, the family was united on the coffee front. Coffee was made of pure milk, with lots of sugar and just a pinch of coffee. It was a commodity of luxury and was not consumed everyday. It was only for lazy Sunday afternoons or special occasions like holidays or cricket match breaks (back in the days where 50-50 version of the game was more popular). Since it did not have that much caffeine (due to the miniscule quantity that was added), we were allowed to have it more easily. I used to love coffee, it was not tastier but its aroma was more hypnotising. The nose succumbed first. The nose is half the deal when it comes to taste.
 
Surprise of surprises I got married into a TamBram family where filter coffee is fuel. The first thing that is done in the morning is putting some water for boiling. Ground coffee is pressed into the coffee filter and the boiled water is then poured to make the decoction. In a steel tumbler, a peg of decoction is poured, a little sugar and  the solution is made not by stirring, but by pouring the decoction from the tumbler into a flatter vessel and vice versa. This process is carried out till the sugar has dissolved. Fresh boiled milk is poured and voila! Filter kapi ready. When I had it the first time, it was like a whole new world opened for me. What was the thing I used to have earlier? Like a drug addict goes on to higher levels and small amounts don’t give the kick (I know I am watching too much Breaking Bad :D) , the coffee I used to consume earlier seemed like some kids version. I was in for the real thing. I was a changed person.
 
When we moved to the UK, I was bowled over by the variety of coffee. There was Columbian, Brazilian, from Costa Rica and where not. There were types, strengths, different roasts, flavours, syrups and toppings to go - it was as if a committee sat and thought Coffee(I am sure there are such people :) ). Being a colder place, the urge to have the warm drink was always round the corner. To address the issue of lethargy when it came to making another mug, I decided to go full length at a go. That’s when I migrated to having huge mugs of ultra strong coffee. The usual quantity we used to have in tumbler seems unsatisfactory. I needed my full dose. So I went from having coffee flavoured milk to big mugs of very strong coffee. I can imagine how my mom reached where she is when it comes to tea. In spite of having progressed on the coffee world, my first love is still tea and more specifically ginger tea. I believe there are very few things a warm cup of ginger tea cannot cure, especially if they are things pertaining to the mind :)
 
What I have here, is just a snapshot. I could go on telling tales around tea and coffee and idiosyncrasies of acquaintances around the drinks. I could have a whole post on the similarities and differences , a S.W.O.T analysis of tea and coffee, my experiences with different types of tea and coffee in different places, shop drinks versus home made . In short, I could go on and on till dear reader would need a cup of tea or coffee :)
 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

(B)reaking Bad

I wanted to write about this epic television series. This series has converted me. I never watch  soaps. I remember some Hindi serials like Junoon and Swabhimaan being aired. I  followed them for some time, since those used to be the programs when we came back from school and had our food. I was glued to them for some time. Till I lost  all interest. I used to follow Byomkesh Bakshi which was   a crime series. It was one of the best made in my opinion. Somehow could never digest any of the Ekta Kapoor genre. My mom and granny are avid followers of some programs like Balika Vadhu, Mahadev and recently Mahabharat :) For me its all white noise.
 
I was never much into sitcoms either. In college most of the populace raved about F.R.I.E.N.D.S; I used to find it utterly mundane. Only during my maternity leave, for the lack of anything else in the 1400-1500 slot, I watched all the episodes. Post marriage, thanks to K, I started following Scrubs, Fresh Prince of Bel Air, My wife and Kids, Seinfield, Everybody loves Raymond and a few more. Some of the recent ones we watch together are HIMYM, Don’t trust the B in apartment 23, 2 Broke Girls, Happy Endings, New Girl, Rules of Engagement, Episodes and of course BBT. There are some British comedies which are funny like Bad Education and Pram Face. I watch them, more as something that is running on the television. I am not too serious and would not mind missing an episode. Though there are lots of chances to catch up on any missed episode, I have rarely brought myself to view them.
 
There was a lot of hullabaloo about Breaking Bad. Since I am not into serials I did not give it much regard. One fine Sunday afternoon, to utilise the unlimited broadband, K downloaded Season1. That very fine Sunday afternoon, for the lack of anything better to do, we watched E1 S1. It was all right. I could not ascertain why was it so popular. Since we had a free download, we decided to watch the next episode. There was some time, we had no plans. We watched one more episode. Till we sucked into the vortex. It was very easy to dismiss the first episode. It was just as easy to get glued onto the third and subsequent.
 
The first thing that impressed me was the acting. The lead characters of Bryan Cranston, Anna Gunn and Aaron Paul are phenomenal actors. I have an  itsy bitsy crush on Bryan Cranston. ;) The actors have emoted the characters with  dexterity. Bryan Cranston who plays the moppy but highly intellectual under achieving chemistry teacher is very playful and vibrant in real life. Aaron Paul's portrayal of a 'Yo' kid is phenomenal. He injects the humour element without being a caricature. He makes over the top stupidity feel valid. Anna Gunn who plays the uptight wife evokes the rage and empathy of the viewers in equal measure. On one hand she is this idealistic wife who does not see practical aspects which strikes as ridiculous, but on the other the extent to which she believes in some virtues strikes as commendable. The lead characters are very well supported by a cast who are on par in acting.
 
The second box that the series ticks is the wonderful writing. I like the way the story is woven. As the viewer is taken through the journey, it all ties together. A big role is played by chance. I am a bit of a fatalist, who believes in fate and destiny. If some things are destined to happen they will. In the story there are many instances I have exclaimed 'What are the  odds!?". Does that not happen oh so often?  History is speckled with instances where chance played a major role and changed the entire course of events. Any epochal event has a chance incident as its instigating factor. Similarly providence plays a major role throughout the script. Else it could have well got over in season 1. I like the way known factors are matched with unknown which are then altered due to the actions and personalities of the characters in question.
 
The third element is the element of suspense. It is no whodunit, the story revolves around happenings of people wanting to make a life of crime. They land in pretty precarious situations. The point till they extricate themselves can take one's breath away. There are so many such instances and each one is fantastically executed. Much praise is due to the actors who make the scenes so real and life like and make the viewer a part of it.
 
Well, I have been recommending Breaking Bad to everyone and his dog. As is custom, I have been late in jumping this bandwagon, but now I wear my love for this fabulous program on my sleeve!
 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

(A)shma

Have I told you about Ashu? My super cool friend who goes by the dictum hum isse zyaada cool hote to freeze ho jaate?

I must have mentioned her quite a few times and I keep popping in her posts once in a while too *lucky me*. She was the one who started me on blogging. She is this brilliant mathematical and logical brain with a near photographic memory. One fine day surprise surprise she started blogging. I had already missed the boat though I always thought of myself as a 'writer'. When I saw Ashu's posts, I was impressed by her clarity and her vocabulary. That really inspired me to claim some space in the nebulous digital world and start writing. Yet again she has motivated me to get on with the A-Z challenge, where every day we post a letter from the alphabet. I am late for this too, I had seen people do this. This was supposed to be in the month of April(I guess). I am late by a good month. Ashu did ask me to get on with it, but I was too flaccid. Seeing her posts and the lack of mine, I thought – why not? So lets get ready for 25 days of rambling and ranting and bla di bla from yours truly :)

As I mentioned earlier, having the more scientific bent of mind, I did not associate anything literary with her. Which goes on to prove how prejudiced am I. Or maybe just how multi faceted is she! I had the first look of her during counselling for engineering seats (the process where successful candidates are granted admission into various colleges spread across the state). She was just ahead of me in the rankings and as we were going through the acceptance procedure I congratulated her. (I doubt if she has any memory of it at all, because she is a bit of a goldfish when it comes to attention span :P. I know this on one hand and a beautiful mind on the other – that’s Ashma!) Fate was to bring us even closer, since we were dorm mates. Coincidentally, our beds were adjacent. For the initial few days, she was practically at her local guardian's house. I got very few chances to meet her, till the laboratory sessions began. After which we got along famously.

Back in our days, we had a practice called 'ragging' or what the seniors claimed to be ways to increase interactions with new comers. One trick question we were often asked was our hobby. You say anything, you were digging a hole for yourself and sometimes for some others too. For the lack of anything better I had stuck with reading. When asked my favourite novel (people were very well read ) I had claimed Gone With The Wind. Which undoubtedly is a very nice novel and is definitely in top spot for me. Another fact that worked was, it was the only novel by Margaret Mitchell( actually written by her). So that helped me a bit. So I was not harassed on questions regarding her other works. The genre being quite typical was also not much of an issue to handle. Thornbirds being the only other which stake a similar claim. That was another book I loved at the end of my first year. I digress, its not about me :D

Ashma being the truthful soul as a typical Aries had said, watching tv was her hobby. Thankfully she spent a lot of time at her local guardians, but the days she was in town, she had to write quite a lot of stories of quite a lot of soaps :) Looking back it all feels hilarious though those days were very stressful with classes, inductions, assignments and what not. She had never read a book till she entered engineering. By the end of it, I am sure she could state reading as one of her major hobbies. She is now a voracious reader. Having good speed reading skills (me jealous) she could devour books in a single sitting. She also had this habit of not putting a book down if she was say a 50 or 100 or 150 or even 200 pages  away from the end. There were many times when she was reading well into the night, and would have a couple of hours of studying and would still ace the exam. Talk about being gifted :)

Post graduation, we moved on to our separate career paths. Ashu and I were… hmmm… wait a minute. I might as well take a cue from the soaps Ashu used to watch and leave the rest for another day. For I got 25 more days to blitz through.
Rest in the next episode ;)

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

I would hate to be my mother

PS. A very candid personal post ahead, might bore a lot of people :D

To have lost her father when she was a child. Mummy says, being 8 years old, she felt the gravity of the situation like a torrent. Life was never to be the same again. Granny had to fend for 3 daughters. She had to complete her Bachelor in Education and get a job in a school. Very scrupulously she saved money and fended for her kids. Being the eldest quite a bit of the onus fell on Mummy to support granny's endeavours. As a child, helping in the cooking, household work and care of her sisters. As she grew, in the choice of the courses she could take dependent on funds (she is a brain). Then in the time she could keep delaying her marriage. She was dismissed sometimes for being 'dark' but eventually she got my 'fair' dad as her life partner.

Marriage came with its own baggage. Papa had a big family with 7 siblings and he being the one in the city - a lot fell on him. There was a lot of cost cutting on the part of my parents. But I remember my paternal grandparents till their dying day say that my mom and dad took them to Calcutta. Which was a very big thing for them! Mummy always says their blessings were a major reason why we are where we are. (May they rest in peace)

As soon as sis and I were a bit grown up, Mummy had to take up a job. She says it was because Papa encouraged her, but I am sure there was a bit of financial pinch behind it all the time. She joined as a lecturer in a government college. Government job came with transfers and movements. I was too young to understand, but I remember a span when I was with Papa and my sis with Mummy. I never gave it a thought till much later, but I imagine Mummy living away from one child and her husband – I feel it is a lot to cope. There was a phase when she had to live in another town all by herself and sis and I stayed with Papa to not discontinue our education. She used to make an over night bus journey to come and see us over weekends and holidays. Much later when I joined NIT and used to make over night trips in the bus, I could feel some of the pain Mummy must have. We used to travel in groups, so some small talk between us group of girls would distract me from the thought of my family. But imagine having no one for company and waving your kids and husband goodbye from the bus window. I remember my eyes singing with tears every time. Sis being the kiddo used to cry out loud.

Not only the emotional aspect, the journeys were physically taxing too. In the winter months, the buses would be veritable refrigerators. No amount of clothing can protect one from the chilly winds as the bus sped through deserted hilly terrain. Mummy used to say, during the rainy months, there would be sporadic landslides. The bus would need to take a detour, but the only way to reach a point where a detour could be made was driving in reverse for something like a kilometre many a times. It sounds a very desperate attempt to keep on working, but I feel the needs must have been that dire. Sis and I never faced any sanctions on our demands. We were given the best education and infrastructure to progress. I know many of my friends whose parents had to curtail some of their wishes to make ends meet. I really appreciate what our parents did and how they maintained the perfect balance by never spoiling us. Till date, sis and I understand the value of each penny we spend.

My parent's struggle makes me a bit less judgemental of some of the choices my peers make. Now a days I see a norm being rampant of partners not being co-located, being even in different continents. I know it sounds bizarre and beats the whole purpose of being a family, but then I feel, its human nature to stretch and see if something works out, 'this one-time'. If they do, and God willing the situation does not arise again, its all good. If it comes over again, the first stop gap solution makes them undertake the venture again. If they came out of it once, they can surely manage again. Thus goes on a vicious circle. I am no one to interpret other's lives, but I surely am not quick to jump to conclusions when I come across such scenarios.

Life went on and mom finally landed with an awesome job in a place where she could be with us! Hurray! But by that time I was ready to leave the nest. J The job was too good to be true. Location wise, salary wise, challenges wise, people wise. It was just splendid. If things are too good to be true, they are too good to last long. There was a decision to consolidate branches of the institution and Mummy was offered her position in Ranchi. Since by this time sis and I were on our own career paths, she did not think twice about calling it quits. I squirm to think how the decision might have felt for her. With still close to 15 years of service there might have been so many more accolades she could have attained. (She was always appreciated for her teaching, her personal involvement with the students and her fantastic presentation skills) Being a working mom, I quiver whenever I am presented with a choice of career vs. home. I know I always choose home, because I have only one shot at it, I always look back at career with forlorn eyes. Thankfully such instances have been few and far between, but I hope I am not presented with the calls that Mummy had to make.

Tomorrow Mummy reaches here to be with us for some time. Chiyaa's constant illness and my full time job warranted the need for extra support. We have decided to go the two pronged way. Chiyaa will goto day care one half of the day and Mummy would take care of her for the other (Since mil had left after a year's stay, calling her again would not have been 'safe' from a visa perspective). At least for the next 5 months we wish Chiyaa gets the customised home care that every growing child needs. It has been 1 year and 7 months since Mummy saw her only grandchild. There are video calls every day, but being there in person, hearing her giggles, seeing her tantrums, watching her sleepy eyes in the morning, holding her butter fingers, kissing that cherubic head, getting the wettest kisses and enjoying the countless moments every day  - it is something I would not want her to miss. As has been the glowing theme of Mummy's life, nothing comes without a price. She has to leave my sister who is not yet 'settled' i.e.  married. I know the thought will always bother her like a nagging scar. As she must have waved goodbye to Papa and sis I believe one half of her heart would be torn with the thought of leaving them while the other would be brimming with joy for seeing the kiddo.

At every turn in my life, Mummy's support has been momentous for me. She has always been the pillar who made everything seem achievable. She has shaped me, my opinions, and my attitude. She has remained away from me for long spans of my life, but she has never been absent. She has always struck the perfect balance holding me, shaping me and then letting me go, try and fail when the situation arose. She has been through lots of tough times, and I wish she one day has unadulterated happiness.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

weSurvive IV

Taking a break and returning to work can be daunting. Taking one for maternity for a year and returning more so. 

Luckily for me I had the option of returning part time. I had mil for help while I could work 5 hours. It seemed like the perfect balance between home and work. Slowly I could enthuse myself to give more in each sphere. I started to see the option to move towards a change in my career. I also felt confident to leave chiyaa for longer hours and move towards full time. 

It all came with a lot of hard ground work. First there was the really trying phase of keeping her in daycare, initially half day then increasing it to full day. I had to start preparing for interviews , attending them and waiting with trepidation for the results. 

I am at a stage where I 'think' things are settled. But it has come with a whole set of routine changes. We love inertia and any change though it challenges us also unsettles us. Chiyaa quite does not like the idea of staying nearly 8 hours in the daycare. When I bring her home she clamours for my attention. Leaving me without the room to even get a wash. She's a bit famished as well and is irritable as a result. It takes a lot of effort to get her to eat as well since she is already past the reasoning threshold. I am not very keen on it, but I have to resort to putting some videos in you tube. 

I manage to cook something for her. I hurry through my dinner. Since she stays longer at daycare she does not have much stamina for any other activity. Thankfully K comes as a saving grace in this . Lately he has been able to get home around 1930-2000. I cannot thank God enough for this small stroke of luck. He is able to take care of chiyaa while I get on with cooking lunches and dinner for the subsequent days. It had been quite a while since we had freshly prepared rotis :(

Well that is just a small price that is of not much consequence . The only aspect we want to get sorted is chiyaa. We hope one day I can look back at all this too as 'just a phase'.

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Business with acquaintances

I have always found it weird having to interact with people I know personally in an official setting. But I have had innumerable such scen...