Thursday, October 23, 2008


Good teachers are costly, but bad teachers cost more - Bob Talbert

In my case this adage rings true. There are people you want to forgive and then there are things that you want to forget; for me forgiveness happens in a second but to forget takes eternity and that eternity is nowhere in sight.

Let me take you back in time when I was a naive little eight year old ,a chubby, fair rather rotund eight year old with waist length hair who knew only Hindi and no other language. Survival in the South was tough where all the kids were burdened with ranks and glories of all kinds and that was a sharp contrast to my upbringing. I was a pahari girl who had bad handwriting and equally worse computing skills. To say that I found the sudden change from cold, laidback mountains to a bustling city was tough would be an understatement but being a child I was evolving, evolving rapidly. I learnt that when Ms.Lilliamma said "soon" she meant "fast" and not slow as I was thinking or rather wishing!And soon I transformed into someone who could converse in three languages with ease and who could write sooner than others, yet that way was not paved with roses; certain people did push me and this post is for them.

I have two genetic defects: I am very very absent minded and I am honest to the core. As a kid I loved watching movies on Mahatma Gandhi on Doordarshan and the elders in my family always used to impress upon me the importance of honesty. I still am honest to such a level that I cannot make a practical joke on anyone and these two defects have cost me dearly especially in my childhood. Mrs Seetha Bose was one teacher who detested me and to this day I do not know why. Detest? that too towards an eight year old? Well I feel that she hated me back then and made wonderful use of every opportunity to put me down. I still remember my seat in III 'C' where as a new student I was sitting oblivious to most of the talk that was happening around me. S.B had a wonderful way of humiliating students who had not submitted their home work (read home burden). All the notebooks were collected and kept on her desk while all the students stood up. As and when the names were called the students would sit down. I was standing tall and proud as I had neatly written and submitted my work. One by one all of them sat down but me. My hands went cold, how could this happen? Then it suddenly hit me, hit me like lightning I was waiting for Soumya Abraham!!! She was supposed to be my new BFF and I was waiting for her so that we could submit our work together and while the Class Leader was collecting everyone's notebooks I was making merry having totally forgotten that I had not made the submission! And in that second i zapped back into reality and took out the notebook and handed it over.
" You are a liar" she thundered across the silence.
I was clumsy, stupid and slow but there was one thing that I was not. I never lied.
On and on she went about me copying someone else's work and submitting late. I kept quiet and uttered the one word in English I knew right- "Sorry".

Next was the turn of Mrs.Hemambika. Everyone was to improve their handwritings so we were made to write atleast a page each day and those who did not were beaten on their knuckles with a wooden scale. I guess she picked up that habit from being a Scouts and Guides teacher. I was really scared of the beating so I tried hard to not be absent minded out there moreso because I used to find the beating horrenduous for where I came from only naughty boys were given whacks. I remember that day so clearly. In the assembly it was her day. The Scouts and Guide had a special programme, she was on stage and shouted onto the mic
"Kaiiisa lega"
"Achcha lega" (Scouts and Guides reply)
"How waas it"
" Fundaastic" (Scouts and Guides reply)

Light was pouring into the classroom exposing the dust flying around. Boys in the back bench were busy fighting each other while the girls were busy enquiring "edo thaan aa homework cheydo?" And then she breezed in. Little did our little ears know that we were about to hear the dialogue of a lifetime. As usual the ones who had not submitted the work were standing up and yours truly was one among them hoping for a miracle. And there was a miracle Soumya Abraham was standing up. Soumya- the first rank holder, Soumya- the class leader, Soumya- every teacher's hope, Soumya- most importantly, one of the High School teacher's daughter. Mrs.Hemambika approached the already in tears Soumya, who had never received a beating and enquired the reason which I'm sure was as valid as mine! What do adults think? Do they actually believe that if you tell a whole bunch of eight year olds something snide and nasty they will never remember it?? Well I do Ma'am and I remember it very very clearly.
You said with a smirk, " All of you are saved because Soumya has not done her homework".
Even today I cannot believe your audacity to say that infront of a whole class!!! And before I conclude my post on you let me Congratulate you for winning the Jawaharlal Nehru Best Teacher Award. If only Chacha knew..........

Susy Paul, Susy Paul....where do I begin? You were so beautiful. I still remember the fragrance of Fair& Lovely that emanated from you. I remember your beautiful Chiffon sarees and I remember your beautiful, beautiful smile. I hoped that you, I and Std. V 'C' would be a great mathematical team. I hoped that you would be able to help me with that thick Maths text that I so dreaded. I liked you until that day when Lija and I were standing for not having completed our homework. By the time you were done with the others Lija was smart enough to sit down but I did not want to be called a liar again so I was still standing. If only you had noticed that I had done my work, I had only forgotten to multiply 333 by 3 and so I missed 999 by just one step for which you beat my knuckles until they were red. Did you not see tears in my ten year old eyes or where you just upset because of your father's ill health or were you just fed up of dealing with your husband like your niece, my classmate Alsa told us later on? Whatever it was that you were dealing with, why did you take it out on me?? What wrong did I do to you? I never cursed you, I swear I never did but I am sorry that you were at one point battling Cancer. I hope you are better now.

Once I moved to middle school all of the above have been nice to me. Except Mrs Seetha Bose. Middle school and High school students never used to go to the Elementary levels, why I never knew until that day. I saw you walking towards the staff room. You were far yet I bowed my head meaning to wish you. When I came closer you yelled at me "Don't you have a tongue???"
Why me?? I had atleast bowed my head, my friend had not even bothered to wish you, yet you picked only on me! During exam time you picked on my again for not buckling my school shoe whereas your own son was wearing dirty Hawai chappal! Your own kids were around my age yet you never felt any emotion other than disgust towards me? I am not asking for love or empathy but couldn't you just ignore me???

FYI: Well, these are just the few negative incidents that happened,the rest of my school life was smooth.

More later...........

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Reason

Why do we live abroad? This is something I’ve always wondered about even after being in the U.S. of A for well over a year. Back home we have everything - our families and friends, good jobs, amazing food, the luxuries of having domestic help and the list goes on. What drives us in hordes to an alien country where we need to drive miles to buy basic amenities, where we do not even know who our neighbors are, and where if you are spotted dancing in the rain someone might actually dial 911 thinking you are mad! Do we leave our beautiful, hot, tropical land only to experience how we fare at trudging through harsh winters? Or is it just the moolah that we make as the crème-de-la crème?

Well, we might be the envious layer that has a good credit history (apart from a Toyota Camry), we own homes that the average Joe can only dream of and we are also a blessed lot that has a lot of other things going in its favor. But there is one thing that we lack and we lack it seriously and that is (drum roll please) POLISH.We are doctors, professors, software gurus of the highest ranking but good manners, politeness, courtesy and anything that is concerned with the etiquettes of civilized living escape us. How? That is a million dollar question.

It was just yesterday that I was talking to an Indian travel agent. It was my second call to confirm my itinerary. Having given her my credit card number the first time itself, I called her up to confirm whether she had received my money. And the way she reacted was worth putting up on youtube.
“I got it NO !!” was her annoyed reply.
Gauging her already boiling temperament I enquired even more politely as to when I will receive my ticket to which her retort was worth a million francs considering the fact that it was I who was paying her the bucks.

Were I back home this incident might not have been so jarring. It is expected that people who service you are rude PERIOD. This is the exact opposite of something you will get from a non Desi. I remember calling up a customer care unit to find out about a delayed courier, my call being transferred from one department to the other I heard a million apologies and consoling words coupled with prompt action as opposed to the Indian call centres where I was rudely shoved from one department to the other without achieving anything substantial towards the end.

Another example is the omnipresent symbol of the survival of the Indian in America- the Desi grocery store. Now this is one place that really resembles the stereotypical market even though the fish or the stench may not be all pervading. Here you will find us clamoring for the best bhindi or any such perishable, (many a time breathing down each other’s neck) like it were an important tournament, the victory of which was important for survival. If this were an American store it would display a statutory warning “Tread with care. Any action of yours might be hazardous to health for which the Store will not be held responsible”. To top the jostle, many of my friends have related to me the all too familiar story of the overtly friendly shopper who wanted to involve you in some sort of business scheme despite your apparent uninterest.

Now to add another feather, I know a certain consultant making $150.00 an hour (despite the fact that he spends time reading trivia online, which really is none of my business, but I too am a desi my dear and old habits die hard!). Now this guy is the penultimate example of being uncouth. Forget the fact that he suffers from brohmidrosis, he has another blemish, he cannot accept the fact that women have breasts! Is it a miracle? Is it a deformity? Or is it a sheer coincidence that the entire female homosapien clan has breasts that too of different sizes??? I presume that the aforementioned questions are those arising in his dubious mind every single time he sees a female! As ridiculous as that sounds it is a rather unpleasant reality that his coworkers have to face day in and day out as he just cannot take his eyes off the human anatomy.

And the examples continue…….
Of course, there are us who are well mannered, polite and even chivalrous but the fact remains most of us lack it.

The bottom line is simple I just like polite people and that’s my raison d'être.

So, what is your reason for sticking around?

DISCLAIMER: Neither do I worship the land of milk and honey nor do I disdain fellow desimen. I am only an observer.

Monday, May 5, 2008

10 Things.......

Read a post somewhere in the blogosphere about the things one would like to do before they were dead, here is my list!

  • Pamper DH to death!
  • Call up family n friends (would like to send them gifts, but don't want them to feel bad later on)
  • Get my hair done!! (I've hair that behaves mad and nothing can be done on it coz it's got a mind of it's own so I'd finally indulge in colouring and extensions, which I've never dared to, hence look boring :( )
  • Ingest the following :)

Fresh Strawberry Cheescake,Tiramisu, Desert Rosa,Gulab Jamun, Gajar Halwa, Palada, Milk Peda & Mominental food! n it goes on & on, so what if I put on a million pounds, I'm dying anyway!!

  • Give all my clothes n jewels to dear sis
  • Whatever little money I have, I'd give it to orphans (preferably girls, I know, I know I'm being partial here, but it's only coz I KNOW how difficult it is being a woman & I can imagine how bad it can get if you are destitute) and the rest for wildlife conservation/ PETA.
  • Visit the places where I grew up one last time
  • Laugh out Loud until it hurts
  • Get a nice lil O (;)
  • Give Birth!! (If conceiving and giving birth is possible in a day! Would like to know what it feels like to have the power to bring life onto earth, though have heard that it's painful as hell, who cares I'm dying anyway! And for all I know I'd be eating at that time ;)

So, what would you do?

Friday, May 2, 2008

To Thou Dear Friend,

Dedicated to a dear friend who is getting married in the near future.


Hope in heart

seas across

jewels adorn

a million dreams.

Piece of advice

not too nice

words that glimmer

wisdom of a year's shimmer.

Don't be a cohort

be a consort

Watch softcore

but be hardcore

Be an advisor

but not supervisor

Be gentle

yet not tender

Be loving

beware of smothering

But, utlimately

give him time

so that he be fine.


My first post - ferocious!!

I've always written,
Written to friends, family, foes and loves.
Written to vent out frustration.
Never thought of putting up anything until now, now that I've reached a point of stagnation, a point where my brain is so rusty that I can actually hear it creaking. Hence my first post.

Here's to you rusty brain.


a look

a book

a smile

a mile

a million words

a zillion swords

Naked, Swept, Sad, Bored.

a dungeon

a dragon

a dream reaper

a road sweeper

Beautiful. Lifeless. Vigour. Misery.

a full circle.

an empty pinnacle

inexplicable rage

a beautiful page.

Rambunctious. Ferocious.


Thanks to