Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Converses With Pain

You know it, you unsought 
unasked unwelcome emotion, 
you are most disgusting aren't you?
troubling a peace mongering living soul
is what you are known for after all?

you are a treacherous beast
I mused until a moment now
only when I decided to fight you
with my will, love faith all in queue

I resolve, you rather stay close to me
along as long  you define thee
how you articulate my emotions
grow along, my will and you abreast

as I ascend thousand  green brambles
watched, laughed, by unreachable pink roses
hearing faint deep voices so familiar 
may be echoing from a distance

ironically prescribing faith, peace
you do complete my lost part to full
awakening my lost hopes  a cure
apparently, you do care for sure

 I appeal, you are fine,  nested close to me
foster my inner voice to a threshold 
so unaware of my own dreams, 
prick me yet pat my back, 
entrusting me in my whole soul, my realms
- Sush
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Sunday, October 15, 2017

Part 2 - Avani - Reaching The Zenith Altitude





Continuing our journey from Temples at foot hills to the trek. Previous post on this blog featured introduction to Avani and the magnificent temples at the foot hills.


This breath taking view requires a few extra breaths lost as you huff and puff away uphill and prepare your lungs for the fresh fill of the mesmerizing breeze. And also prepare your little hearts to greet few monkey families and tutti -frutti squirrels up there. It is overwhelming to watch the monkeys  just wait for the devotees to beak the coconut outside the temple as a part of ritual and then they could feast on the fruit by chasing the devotee with it's scary growl. And the few squirrels just wait to feast on the left over pieces of coconut or any other fruit.



































Seemed like the avatar of an Hanuman family himself appeared with absolute thirst, to the top of the hill and waited for visitors to pour water to quench his throat to his fill. And there were plenty of them. Remember, they are harmless but definitely defensive. So, never tease them by walking with lot of food in hands.


Now, as you march over uphill, you pass by more heritage spots, each narrating a holy story from the Ramayana that can actually calm your nerves spiritually if you believe in Gods and Goddesses.


A small door-less entrance takes you inside the place where sage Valmiki lived as he wrote the Ramayan. The Ashram is now consisting of a neat stone statue of the sage.







It's a well-known fact , whether one calls it mythology or one believes in the story, that Sita Devi after being exiled sought refuge in "Ashram" of Sage Valmiki. Soon in this stone abode she gave birth to her twin sons. With a mark of respect by married women, locals have practiced hanging green bangles at the top of the entrance door of this stone room which has been named "Sita Nilaya".



A touching glow. An imaginary oil lamp marked with some paints on the rocky pathway outside the "Sita Nilaya" is yet another belief by people from decades ago that it was the spot where the lady placed the lamp after sun set and hence even now the place glows with such tiny remembrances. Really amazing to witness such tiny details from Ramayan coming true and much to some of us who call it mythology it seriously surprises that locals have inherited stories from their ancestors who have supposedly been in the era after the medieval. 



And the popular "DhanushKoti" is supposed to be where Rama's brother Lakshman, who upon learning about the scarcity of water in Sita Nilaya, pulls his bow and arrow "dhaanushkoti" and splits the rock into two, to create a stream of water among the rocks. Again people believe that it never dry, even in perching summer, of today. We simply admired the tiny grey and black fishes in the water that connected us to our childhood rainy endeavors where we gathered tiny fishes in "tea strainers" that were our fish nets, from water streams formed by rain water.


One of the tarn that fascinated me
There definitely is plenty of resting spots on the way to the hill. These tarns are the best. You can not resist picking up oval bubbles, flip them horizontal and throw it spinning in the water. Can you? That's exactly what we did too. The lotus is the proof that it is stagnant water and hence it is not recommended to dip your legs or hands in the water.




Finally as you reach the top of the mountain puffing and panting,  we reach out to  the "Sita Temple" from the side entrance. The landmark where Sita Devi calls for Mother earth to slide open and snare her within her bosom.  This temple is one of the rarest  temples dedicated to Sita Devi in India.  A idol of the Goddess is worshipped every day by priest.

Right behind the temple is where you see two big boulders as mark of spot where Sita devi took her last journey under the mother earth. The picture 2 on the right above is where it is and a tradition of devotees squeezing themselves under the two boulders has been practiced. Call it belief or blind belief, these Hindu praxis leave me as astonished as spiritual.

Whatever is the story about, the nature leaves you in an awe as you fill your lungs with the breeze from the top of the hills watching the splendid bird eye view  of Avani.


The colourful Lingeshwar Temple as seen from the top of the hill



Key - Notes - Remain the same as in part-1 of this post too.
  • Avani is an absolutely cute village hosting no restaurants at all. Warning - Carry ample food. Small shady hotels will provide you scrumptious hot meals but the interiors are pretty puking dirty.
  • Clean water bottles are however available but make it to pick up your Gatorade if you wish to.
  • Don't expect a good connectivity of public transport. Plenty of taxis will be available for hardly an hour and half, drive from Bangalore.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Rock Climbing In The Mystical Avani -PART 1


Myself at the top of the rock mountain of Avani.

AVANI
From the land of gold mines; dotted with varied sized rocks; the Rockies of Karnataka; a reminiscent of Gabbar Singh of the popular Sholay; lotus filled tarns; clusters of compactly packed colourfully painted kutcha houses; mystical primordial stone temples of medival era  in rocky environs. This is a wee bit of what AVANI is.

At a distance of about 100km from Bangalore City, AVANI is a small village in Kolar district of Karnataka. Apart from housing varied ancient temples, it is also a popular location for rock climbing. It has been a heritage site and a not so popular sightseeing site in Karnataka I would say. Probably because of not so craggy mountains which is a fascination for the trekkers or for the reason that most of us believe in the stories of Ramayana as "mythology". Apparently, I thoroughly enjoyed the rock climbing as well as the spiritual vibes around the heritage spots and temples nestled in the huge boulders with a couple of "serene sounding" tarns.



Twinkling Star of Avani

As you drive inside this village, you recognize the colourfully painted small kutcha houses. My fascination of an Indian Fairy tale. The popular scene of a rural Indian village where in beautiful women and little girls cat-walk with plastic pots carrying water from ponds or lakes.  Small shops selling lovely scented candies, local soda in orange and yellow, "beedi",  sachets of pickles, shampoo, tooth paste or mosquito coils hung in the exteriors, line up the non asphalted dung smelling roads. There is  something in these tiny villages. Guess what? The innocence. The loving smiles immersed in brilliant radiance of friendliness spells a cast of our rich social culture. 



Avani received a prominent place mainly due to the legends associated with it. As per the local belief, sage Valmiki, the author of the epic Ramayana was residing here. This is the land where Goddess Sita sought refuge after being exiled by the Lord Rama and eventually gave birth to her twin children Lava-Kusha. It is also said that the war between Lord Rama and his sons Lava and Kusha took place in this village. 



In the center of the compound stands the Ramalingeshwara Temple

At the bottom of the hill, the first shrine that we come across is the  ancient temple compound known as the Ramalingeshwara, Lakshmaneshwara, Bharateshwara and Shatrugneshwara, built by the Nolamba rulers in 10th century. According to legend, Rama was performing Ashwamedha Yaga when his Horse was tied up by Lava and Kusha. Even after repeated requests by Lakshmana, Bharatha, Shatrugna and others, they did not free the Horse and fight took place between them. When everyone lost to Lava and Kusha, Rama himself turned up and had to fight. Later this was disrupted by Sita. This is a sin since the fight was between father and the sons and other relatives. Sage Valmiki then instructed the brothers to install the Lingas in their names for absolution of the sins.  




The back-view from temple exteriors projects the sight of the uphill route to the Sita Temple
The entire compound comes under the purview of the Archaeological Department and is well maintained. I was overwhelmed to be greeted by a lady police officer, a tourist police and became out best guide for the entire day.




A view of the Epic three boulders 


The local people have been believing that spot as in above picture is the one where in Sita Devi climbed onto to view the scene after Lord Hanuman informed her about the battle challenged by her twin sons on her own husband unknowingly about their identity. It has been neatly marked by arranging three boulders one over the other in memory of the embarrassing event.



Beautiful Lotus Pond at the foothills 

Nature's best gift to a rocky hilly area is a serene pond. Feels so full of life. The brightly coloured lotus just adds onto the peace it spreads onto your spiritual trek you look forward to, en-route the Sita Devi temple on the top of the hills.

As you begin your march of almost an hour , snaking among the rocks, sometimes sneaking onto tipsy cliffs or sometimes a few neatly constructed stone steps, you will come across several historical landmarks on your way. Iam afraid we did have no encounters with creepy reptiles other than little cute squirrels or some chameleons under every warm boulder. Most cacti plants attracted swarm of flies and that's a warning to steer clear your way off those thorny little green monsters.





Translation of the kannada text - Way to Valmiki Ashram
In search of gabbar if any



On top of the mountain far away in the background, we see the "Sita Temple" the landmark where Sita Devi calls for Mother earth to slide open and snare her within her bosom.  This temple is one of the rarest  temples dedicated to Sita Devi in India.  


Maha Shivaratri and Ramalingeshwara rathostava are the famous festivals that are celebrated with great pomp and fervor here. 

More on AVANI will appear as part-2 of this post.

Key - Notes
  • Avani is an absolutely cute village hosting no restaurants at all. Warning - Carry ample food. Small shady hotels will provide you scrumptious hot meals but the interiors are pretty puking dirty.
  • Clean water bottles are however available but make it to pick up your Gatorade if you wish to.
  • Don't expect a good connectivity of public transport. Plenty of taxis will be available for hardly an hour and half, drive from Bangalore.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Naughty At 40 Or No-Tea At 40?

Woman at 40 can't be more mad than this -Getty Images 


One fine morning, I admired myself in the mirror - “mirror mirror on the wall”..... Mirror stops me. Sshh. "you are touching 40 and not eligible to complete the question". But, err I was aghast.  But I am just touching 40. Yeah, my buts finally redirected my attention to the "Butt". Most problems begin with butt and continue on the but. Especially for we women.


We women have mastered the  fabulous art of how to get fat. At 40, anybody can get fat.  "But" I was beginning to plot a master plan, something unique apart from discarding my roly-poly figure like an effigy.  Why not attempt being naughty at 40. I must date a boy friend. I would surely find some "cool dude" in my very own Manipal. It was demanding task though. For that I should start looking like Dimple Kapadia or Karishma Kapoor at least. I couldn't possibly think  of Deepika Padukone. I am a vintage model though.  What a treacherous pain it was. I ended my search long before it even began.

These Fairy tales dupe you. Neither do all dreams come true nor does a Cinderella miracle happen.  I can’t see a boy friend! Any way, I do not have the right to even see at all! I can barely find my misplaced spectacles without wearing one.  And my  teeth! - Every year, I see the dentist more than my family.  Who could possibly understand my state of shock when the  young dentist  addressed me as “auntie”. She just nuked my marvelous plans throwing them into smoke.


Last month, I tried para gliding on sea-shore. My husband is such a down to earth person, he dint join me. As the guide gave me lessons on safety before he sent me flying high up in the air, he instructed ”auntie don’t bend back, bend towards the front, for balance”. Auntie?  This was heights. The ghostly vocabulary our folks use for such glamorous sweet women haunted me everywhere.


I decided to abandon my naughty at 40 mantra. It is not my cup of coffee. Please do not mind my hijacking the English language and the idioms to the South India. I am a filter kaapi (Coffee in native kannada language) lover forever. Honestly, it was time to say no-tea/coffee after my blood and cholesterol reports came in. Also reading the big report full of graphs and different types of lines produced at the cardiologist at Manipal KM Hospital was beyond my understanding. I took a few seconds to hold it right way. I needed to come back to reality and pinch myself.


In fact it is not a ideal time to get naughty but the time ticks on with more of NO for you. Especially for a woman, a mother, wife, a housekeeper that multitask juggling a number of tasks, who hardly has any time for a long shower, or even a morning coffee sitting on a couch. That's a luxury because you are all around the kitchen packing dozens of multicoloured Tupper-ware boxes full of food for the husband and kids. It consists of a whole meal in south Indian style. Starting from Idlis and sambar to lunch that includes pickle to desserts and not to forget a big box of fruits.


Have any of you felt this, when we were in school and our parents turned forty, they looked so old. Huh. Surely we were silly then? Because when the reality draws up on you have started noticing the creases on your face in the mirror. And soon they would turn into groves too. No, shouts your mind. Not every commercial of any colourful tubes of creams have ever satisfied an aging woman. Mind you. I have tried several. Each time someone exclaims you "Hey don't look old" only I know, what a rut it created in my dream way.  And my mirror tells me the truth. You stretch yourself close to the mirror, yank your cheeks and you know the bitter truth. Yeah.


If you have a teenager at home. That's another mirror for you. She will steal and rob your tops from your wardrobe, even the lipsticks and gels and end of the day be a lovely critic with sweet suggestion pills like "amma you should try that blue gown, that ones suit YOU more". There was so much mystery in that YOU here. I am the same. So why shouldn't I wear those attires that I wore five years ago?


Remember, being forty has a horrifying beauty in its own as you feel you have added experience with wisdom but with additional package of wrinkles and permanent crinkle.
There are horrid times when I have age spirit cast spell on me. Wherein I almost forget names of people or places. It lasts for few seconds. My sister who is a doctor convinced me it's because of age. "Age". This went echoing in my heart so badly. What does it mean, that I am already aged? Or am I aging?  or wait I'm growing too old?


Now that I am aged, I will definitely stop scowling and furrowing my brows. Wait, folks, then there is so much life left. Who is bothered about the mirrors after all. When life offers your lemons grab some tequila. 40 or 60. Go get your backpack, go hiking, running marathon or paragliding. What's in a age? Just some wrinkles. We can get over it and plan a Madhuri Dixit number after this Dandiya of the Navaratri. "Ek Do Teen...aja sanam aja bahar"..


Your external beauty was only a illusion that lifted your spirits up. Feeling beautiful was the duty of your knowledge hungry brains and your love hungry heart.
Falling in love with your inner self, falling in love with life is all that makes our journey from this earth to the portion below it, a really worthy one. Let's rock even at for-tea.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Sevagram - Exploring The Less Explored Historical Site


Neither am I a photographer  nor a traveler. But I do both. When I travel for pleasure, I share lots of pictures and then blog, because I am only a blogger. My travel experiences that I share here are my memoir. Now,  it's not everyday that I introduce myself in my posts. Am a simple town girl from Manipal and there are three things I love in this world. My blog, my blog and my blog.
Well, and so it happened, that one  morning not long ago we landed in this place called "Sevagram'. So getting to the point, Sevagram is a small village, renamed from originally "Segaon". Sevagram is about 5 km from Wardha town and 50 kilometers plus from Nagpur in the state of Maharashtra.


The picturesque roads with faint smell of dust and dung; Beautiful Prussian blue buffaloes that consume more space on the roads than your SUV; The vegetable vendor squatted by the roads sides with hand towels wet scrubbing the  sweat even in the monsoons; Driving in rural areas has its own bumpy charm.





Now, we had reviews about this place about being historically popular for M.K.Gandhi last resided here before his march to the strike for Independence. He had decided to make this his headquarters until his struggle for independence succeeded. Shortly after his untimely unfortunate demise, this place started turning into a historical place, a museum reflecting the aura of  activities of this freedom fighter. He had used this place as office too and the place was supposed to have spiritual vibe. That was not all, I was told about the finger licking food, the Maharashtra thali (meal)  that was served in the canteen of the museum in this place and the  exotic collection of hand-woven Khadi cloth.


BAPU KUTI


"Punyadham Sevagram" reads the board at the entrance

You get to walk inside a path with no asphalt, covered on both side with gigantic trees, a few shops lined near the gate that sell the authentic Khadi cloth,  into a wide compound. The various "Kuti" or the Katcha houses  with hay thatch here and there mark the rural beauty, showcase the scenes of the great freedom fighter's habitats. The house that he lived in with his wife . Kasturba Gandhi with its uneven mud flooring, the bathtub that blended with luxury for that era; the office space with a now antique wooden table, the neatly kept glass shelf with few bits of paper clippings and an honest letter of love he wrote to his wife when she was ill;  and telegrams of those times are the main attraction here. One can definitely get the feeling of waiting at the door as if for an appointment with Gandhi himself.

This model Gandhi with shining scalp is my sonny, too excited, unable to understand if this was a house we wanted to buy and stay in!! Accordingly he inspected the bathrooms and other rooms and declared the place was nice.














THE MUSEUM


It is beautifully constructed new concrete building that exhibits master pieces from life and habitats of  Bapu times. The display is well polished and well-kept. As for me, I felt like a revisit to the class 10 history lessons and as for my kids, older one was busy studying details of each and every exhibit. She was first introduced to Bapu by  "Lage raho Munna Bhai "and my little one hopping like a happy rabbit unknowing why the hell were we busy watching old tables, chairs, lamps and stuff like these while there was the smell of food and sight of ice cream right outside the building.

The most important thing to do is to visit the canteen with beautiful ambience , cane furniture, and the authentic Maharashtra food with the ghee smeared "Puranpolis," Kokam kadi"  and 14 other delicacies served in lovely steel  plates that come in "family size". A super example of best quality and most quantity at a time.
Any travel includes food and more food but this one includes food and rich and best food!
A historian or a would be historian would love to explore this place. Nevertheless any nature lover too will end up exiting the place with a happy smile.  Our Nagpur visit got a lovely touch touring the serene interiors of Sevagram village.
The favourite items of Gandhi that is a must in display


'
The famous "Salt Satygraha"


Prayer Ground In Sevagram
And then, it all ended there.


Friday, September 8, 2017

Converses With My Little Voices

PC - Anu. 
....how it began, when some silent whispers screamed,
 from my heart's secrets, unguarded by the  brain
which apparently showed up soon enough
when I fell in  the ecstatic company of the clouds

how many thousands of moments I have lived
each day, by the side of loved ones
how many errands accomplished
holding hands of those that matter

yet, why, scratches like instances of emptiness?
the fear, if I had lived those moments at all?
experiences of every fraction of second of past
that still rejuvenate my nervous make up

my interactions with sea of people, that left
the  bits of profound lessons, interesting marks
lovely images of life, in the album of my memory..
leaving me immersed in those moments again through these words

cuddled in among all these, was a poignant moment
like a bubble reflecting the rainbow colours
flying in the direction away from 'my' wind
adorable golden pearls of times, that I had lived only once

bubble formed by eternity of love
bonding of strength, love, life and laughter
I got to live it once and let go
leaving me elated in life

how, my experience, hard and lazy work, compromises,
all sculptured and craved out a prominent shape to my life
with beautiful, good or bad times of past, but,
I was yet to lead myself to the next

The future, the dreams that I am expected to live too,
got me a sweeter appointment with my deeper within
for a tete-a-tete , confabbing about gray zone of my heart
Conversing with my little voices, what they want to be....
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Thursday, June 29, 2017

Bored Of Boredom


She could have been me but this GIF source - Google Images

We are all addicted to something. Most of us addicted to our life and a few to the lie that life is too short. Also, today one is easily  addicted to boredom. We are habituated to repeatedly do the mundane jobs and end up with intolerable boredom.

The fact is that, life is too long than we could measure it with the number of hours we can count or the bank balance we managed to haul through our donkey routines. Now, I am just going off track to prove that for most of us boredom is the fastest addiction.

We can even get bored of boredom instantly.

When it's just two days for the weekend to begin, our tendency to start getting bored of our routine increases. Smack the alarm, rush down a hot shower, dress well, sprinkle the holy gas perfumes, sit in our posh cars go to work. And when the weekend is at our door step, the boredom again peeps in too. The long drives, parks, malls and movies all have turned old. We don't want to see people. We are seriously bored of god knows what. There is an endless list of activities to do including the vacation for next year! Yet we have time to crib, huh it's really getting boring ya.

The weather creeps up to be boring too. Be it winter summer or the rains. After some time everything is dull. It's in our minds. We just know when to hit boredom.

Boredom is the new opposite to happiness.
Happy X Sad = wrong
Happy X Bored = right

As for me, it's been four decades on earth and I sure get bored of eating the staple food two times a day, 7 days a week. Neither have I changed my choices in the past 15 years of married life nor have I changed my husband. And hence, by now I do get bored waiting for my husband  to return from work. I am not the type that will dress well, and sit across the window with elbows at perpendicular on the couch and as his car screeches to halt at the parking rush to the door with grin. Because, he is on his mobile and am on mine and both are bored of them too. 

But, you see we are addicted to boredom. 

I have a daughter. Shes turns thirteen next week. But years ago she mastered the term "boring amma". No it does not mean her mom(amma) is boring.  For my daughter the term amma is a suffix or a prefix with most nouns adjectives or even verbs. Hungry amma, play time amma, TV amma, shower amma, and in no time shes bored of everything. So it's boring amma. She's my prided plume. Always on her toes. But at least once in a day there's time for her to feel bored. Offer her any idea and she's the Nostradamus that knows it's going to be boring too.

Each generation of human species is a step ahead in the learning and so is my son 3 year old and this afternoon he declared to me "mama I am bored". I was in a state of shock with mixed feelings. He hardly knows what it is and hes hit by it. I quickly indulged into some funny chats with him and questioned "what are your favourite things?". Pat came the reply "egg, chicken and mamma". That was second googly for the day for me. Apparently understanding the addictive syndrome of the generation, I quietly  offered him to watch his favourite cartoon on television and tried to sip some coffee with my thinking cap on.

I know that I am happy today. Not because I must be the Ms perfect. Not that I don't have regrets when I look back. Not that there are no things I did not pick up to do and I repent them too. But over period of time I have learn't to put up with repents or hate. I have mused myself with the fact that I am doing a right thing today and will continue to do so tomorrow. When I took my break from my work, two years ago, I started slowly getting addicted to the cozy walls of the house and the hurricane routines. You will find me like a spider woman all around the house. Yet this gave me time to muse, whatever am doing is right or wrong? And then, I am filled with so many contradictions that I get bored thinking of all of them.

Again, I have no idea what boredom is. We are the busiest species on the earth and most intelligent. That's the very reason, we have so much to do that we end up piling up intolerable boredom on our shoulders.

I have decided to attain a nirvana. By being extremely selfish. Unless I am happy, I cant be the same super woman or the spider woman to paint the entire sky happy to keep my home happy. So take a chance to curb boredom, freak out with friends, watch a movie or vanish off to some sea side with a good friend. The list is just too big too and I might by soon by hit by boredom even choosing one of them.

Here we go. Don't stop feeling bored. It's a roller coaster phase.It's just a highly nuanced emotion especially highly credited in society today. Hitting boredom is just a speed pump for a change, isn't it?
 Is it?

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Mug Printing On The Sonny Day

You and I may have different experiences, but definitely the same jubilant emotions, very same euphoric moments.
Those few minutes of midnight that I spent in the  singing van with multicoloured lights called "Ambulance" brought a new light of life inside me; I did not know I was changing to be a new person in those few minutes.; I lost my voice for a minute; My closed eyes saw images of my mom and dad smiling; Only some tinkling noise of a glass bottle twined up with pipes to my arms, woke me up to catch a faint glimpse of the royal hospital exteriors; Yes the government hospital of Doha, Qatar, was nothing less than a royal palace. 

THIS MONTH MY LITTLE FELLOW TURNED 3
Happy Birth-days are not like the other 364 days. That's one day where we feel extremely special and want to pamper ourselves and celebrate the day we came into existence on this earth. The joys multiply when all our near and dear ones too join in to sing some notes.

We all have a perspective towards birthday celebrations. Quietly slip off to a gateway destination, make some noisy party in our residences, or a quiet dinner with family and friends. Well, we would have tried almost all types. 


This month my little fellow turned 3. We decided to simply celebrate it in his Nursery with his buddies. The enthusiasm was not allowing us to fade it out into a simple one. And hence the preparation began. Goodies to all little children, the grand pink rose cake from Opera House (pink is my son's favourite colour) his new pink attire and a coat. Ah, now this idea of the mug printing for his loving teachers. When all preparations were at our finger tips, finally the mugs were done too and  arrived to be placed in the middle of a table in our drawing-room.

That night, as I finished my chores and duties, and was about to put off the last pole of lamp light, I took a glance at those mugs shining on the table. The time of night triggered me to dive into some time capsule, reach out to those moments again. Those, of exact three years ago when he was born. 

One night three years ago, he was just expected yet. With a heavy baby bump when I had just pushed myself into a slumber did I wake up abruptly at witching hour of 2 AM. I knew, I just knew it was that time for him to arrive. I acted as quickly as like any chemical reaction,  pinched my better half that was snoring softly on the other side of the bed. The ambulance arrived in like an instant "abracadabra". 7th minute I was inside the big multicoloured van with a singing siren,  huffing, puffing and managing myself onto the smell of the liquids and other medicated stuff inside. Immediately I took to admiring the interiors of the ambulance. It was my first time. The nurse beside me asked several questions, took notes and offered some additional oxygen too. 

Those 12 minutes I spent inside the ambulance were a characteristic fair bit of an experience what I term as a perfect mixed feel times. The royal palatial hospital had a neatly manicured lawn and five-star facility. I was overwhelmed to see an Indian doctor on duty and gleefully sat up on the stretcher till the lady doctor sweetly ushered me back on stretcher and to a beautiful room but covered with huge heavy curtain from all sides of the bed. 

After an entire 18 hours of monitoring and my toiling up and down the hospital corridors with labour, finally the hard work paid off. I reminded the nurse with full confidence when it was time to rush to maternity ward and get the baby out. It was a first experience again to be on a bed completely surrounded by heavy curtains as is custom in Doha. 
The arrival of the bundle of joy lasted for few minutes till he was taken away for his wash and I lay staring at the ceiling and the tubes and pipes twined onto my arms. Just as I waited to ask the next staff when would the baby arrive to me, I witnessed it was almost 12 midnight and the mark of first day of holy month of Ramadan, and everybody got busy hugging each other and wishing "Ramadan Kareem". 

It was then, I took a chance to look at my coffee coloured maternity gown the hospital gave me. Intoxicated by the smell of medicine and the ticks of the big dirty wall clock, angrily I turned my face towards those heavy monstrous curtain, when I heard Usha Auntie run in like a happy puppy with a bundle in her hands. Look he looks just like his dad.. 
Enough, after all this labour and wait, and now at least I deserved to be told see how he resembles me. But too sweet that auntie was, I nodded a positive with her.

Now as I arrived in to my private room, it was midnight and exactly a day after I had left home in the multicoloured singing van. And world had changed for us. There was an additional birth certificate added onto our family documents and one more passport to be done.

Isn't birth of a human a joyful miracle coupled with emotions, changes and lots of memories for a lifetime's treasury?