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.


"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.


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 08, 2017

Converses With My Little Voices

PC - Anu. 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....