Monday, 27 February 2012

Memoirs of three musketeers!

The open terrace was my favorite it escaping the wrath of mother or plain 'quality' time planning pranks! It has seen a pig tailed, jumping jack, metamorphose into someone who she is or pretends to be, today. The long evenings where we siblings played hide and seek, the precious family moon lit dinners we had on full moon nights and my maiden dish hidden under the water tank- banana halwa in the tava with the spoon sticking to it...the terrace has seen much of my haphazard nomadic childhood days. 

I lust love food! I was so mad about my favorite dishes that i would spend hours together planning to 'steal' them from the kitchen and replenish them in leisure at the most unlikeliest of places- a dark store room of Grandma's house, the ladder entry and at times, beneath the stair case. Have you ever tasted horlicks loaded sprinkled on lukewarm water and lifted off from a spoon tip? How about little darling brother's wheat- apple flavor cerelac, whisked away from the baby shelf? The yummy taste of cerelac tickling the tastebuds and lingering long after the meal in the mouth is just heavenly! Not to forget the Amul milk powder, mango complan, kissan mixed fruit jam...Mother had a real tough time figuring out- how only these bottles and jars went missing and reappeared again in the kitchen with contents missing. The culprit was finally nailed one day under the staircase with mouthful of horlicks, still sticking to every part of her face!

Kudikka vendam, apdiye sapidalam ( Need not drink, eat as such!)
And i am an ardent pet- lover, PETA can sign me their next brand ambassador. I loved pets so much that i tried growing a peacock from a tiny peacock feather, kept hidden in my science book with a few pieces of broken rice grains! I truly believed the tender feather would one day 'bear' a child- a peacock:) My little tin pencil box always held a little critter of red velvet bugs with a few strands of grass. Every morning i tried in vain to 'breed' them in captivity, locking them up in my pencil box on the way to school and in the evenings i sadly let them out, their head count clearly being the same. Seeing my mad love for pets, mother finally let me grow a rabbit and one fine morning i brought home a black rabbit which no one chose from the pet shop. Blackie was an instant hit at home, i almost spent every living moment with her, until one morning when she was forcefully 'sacrificed' to a cat. I tried to ward off the feline, but was then rushed to a Doctor who gave me an injection for feline bite! Poor cat, i don't know if she ever lived after biting me!
Red velvet bug that refused to breed in my pencil box!
Peacock feather that ate rice grains but never  gave birth to a peacock!
I was an excellent swimmer, a thorough professional! Ask Lakshmi akka ( sister) who pulled me out half dead from the deep end of the swimming pool where i had jumped unassuming. Probably, nervous of the single piece chaste swimsuit that adorned my tiny frame. It was a hot summer afternoon that i sneaked out after lunch to the Madura Coats Colony at the edge of the mountains. The colony boasted of a swimming pool and being a village belle interested in spreading her wings, i pleaded with Lakshmi akka to teach me swimming. We planned a short swimming lesson and i looked with secret abomination, at the brown nondescript single piece swim suit. Donning it and draped in a pool towel, i tiptoed to the end of the pool where akka was busy with her brisk laps. As i neared the edge of the pool, i saw the pool boy cleaning the pathway. Girlish desire to show off made a mad rush of adrenaline hit my brains and i just dived in. Poor me, i failed to notice the " DEEP END" sign board. God knows how the fellow must have laughed his head off ( I heard he had to be warded off) seeing a trembling me, pulled out of the water! Father still reminisces how he had to pull me out of water as a small kid when i went diving head first, in the river. He says amidst the laughter- " All we could see was her bloated tummy shining in the water surface".  Ha! I wish i had drowned then. I can remember this story being recounted a number of times to visitors and friends that i almost have memorized every sentence of his narrative by-heart! Bah! Swimming is not my forte...

Nevertheless, God gifted me the ability to cycle long distances and an atlas cycle too! My bright red painted companion was more than a friend who always stood by me- when i wanted to show off before the handsomest guy of the class, the tyre burst! When i wished it could go faster than the 'full sleeved hunk' driving the motorbike, the chain slipped. And when i wanted to bunk classes during a bus strike, mother would force me on its seat and show her breezy 'ta ta!' I cycled fourteen kilometers to and back from school everyday and loved every bit of the crisp mountain air and the green paddy fields that whizzed by. I even had a secret hideout in the nearby waterfall where i could go in my cycle and weep my eye balls out! A howling session followed by a refreshing bath in the waterfall refreshed me and i was ready for more heart ache! I loved to hangout in the company of my best pals, a set of baboons scratching their backs on the rocks. Once i was shooed away by the leader as i refused to show my back to them for scratching! No lice, you see! 
My favorite  spot- Agasthiar Waterfall
I was an outdoorsy girl and i loved plenty of fresh air. I plucked raw jujubes from wild plants and ate them. I feasted on banyan fruits, sans the wiggling worms in it. I played with soottukkai ( a nut that we used to rub on stone that produced great heat, when touched with a rubbed stone one would get blisters!) and collected kunnimuthu ( a red and black pod from a wild plant). Then there were other games grand mother was forced to play with us on summer afternoons- dhayam ( a game akin to ludo), pallankuzhi ( a game with beads or tamarind nuts filled in wooden box with perforations) and how to forget- marbles and spinning tops. I was a champ with marbles and tops, i used to beat all the guys of the street. And slowly cricket crept into our group.I remember mother once chased me around two streets, trying to skin me alive, for playing cricket with the boys on the street! As usual, i escaped climbing on the guava tree:) Ah...the guava tree! I am particularly fond of guava trees, they are so easy to climb and the branches are brittle, they break easily too. I can remember hanging onto dear life after a branch snapped and i waited almost half an hour yelling hysterically, to be  rescued by my grandfather who came running with a ladder. 

My favorite pastime on Sundays was obviously - sleeping in the church! I spent Sunday morning masses in a bliss of half sleep and half unconsciousness. Mother aroused me by a strong pinch in the middle of the mass. I even had a special pillar ear-marked for my sleep, to bang my head on...I loved the Sunday market where i used to doggedly follow mother buying vegetables. Most of all i was crazy about my siblings- two wonderful guys who stand always by me and who were always my trouble mongers partners! We played together on the streets, we broke clocks at home together, we smashed tape cots and sofas, we chucked idlis on the loft, we cooked a banana halwa that refused to come off the tava, - we grew together and were aptly termed the 'three musketeers' by mother. 
The three musketeers- in full form!
Today, when i find my son and daughter brooding over their homework and roaming around the locked up home, all i can think is- i am faring a poor mother. They are missing out the cycle, the swims, the waterfalls, the mountains. I am planning to buy new cycles for my little children and will be letting them 'free' this summer. Hope they find out their secret hideout and bawl their eyes out! Growing up is after all, FUN!!!

p.s.: This post is written as an entry to The Kissan 100% Real Blogger Contest by Kissan and Indiblogger
p.p.s.: If you are really interested in knowing about my hometown, click here!

Friday, 24 February 2012


I am suffering from a unique disorder- Khanomania! I want to live life, Khan size... Wonder why? Lot of slapping and punching going on around the country now, starting from our very own Chotte Nawab aka Nawab of "punch"audi- Saif Ali Khan! What makes these people lose their cool and attack the ordinary and mundane? Being an advocate of ahimsa and someone who always preaches kindness to all living beings, i find these incidents rather err...amusing! What makes political bigwigs and moviedom High and Mighty feel they are above ordinary? The masses...we the dumb idiots who pay for their lavish cars that zip by, their uber cool designer clothing that we help them earn. And what nerve they got to punch us in a restaurant where we dine!

The whole wide world watches with shock the tattered rug wearing Little Prince walk out of the police station, just 90 minutes after the incident wearing a sheepish grin. And the man who got punched- Iqbal Sharma is still nursing his fractured nose. All i wonder is, how would Kareena handle the punches from the rugged and raunchy Nawab? Do the Khans always twist the law around their tiny wagging fingers? Yes, i must say! Yeh hai Indiaaaah! You can always call the shots if you have a few bucks, if you sport a six pack abdomen and always walk the ramps with a naked upper torso. Ask the brooding Khan and he will guide how to kill black bucks to please the lady loves of the movies and get away with it! And oh, you can always plead you never knew black buck was an endangered species.
Ahhhhhh...there he flaunts his abs!

Or you can even drive your land cruiser on the foot path and kill a man and wound a dozen, hide at home for eight hours till the alcohol in your blood wanes away and 'surrender'. Wah, wah, Salmanjhi, natak kya banayi! And trust me, you can always get off with it, see, our Sallu bhai walked away to live happily ever after. Thank Heavens, Bachchan Bahu escaped unscathed...And our Khan's love obsession for 'body guards' has reached astronomical proportions that he has named his latest flick that! 

Nawab Saif Ali Khan is no better. Marrying an actress 12 years elder to him, dumping her unceremoniously for a supermodel who went missing ASAP, using his guards to beat up paparazzi, beating up journalists for writing about then wife, hitting a gay activist and apologizing later- he has his fair share of trials and tribulations. Too much of fame and money is drugging the Khans. The King of all Khans too fares worse in the violent meter...The 'slap gate' scandal with Sirish Kunder got him all bad reviews. All said, poor me now wants to do some slapping and punching, get away with it and live happily ever after. What else would be a better option than following the Khans? Come on guys, bare your shirts, punch, slap and you can always get away with that sheepish grin. Bollywood awaits you and your 'Dard-e-disco' act!!! Have fun watching this!

p.s.: Dedicating this post to the Khans of Bollywood
p.p.s: Is there a Court where i can sue the sun for scorching my city and making me all sooty? ( I pretend it is sun tan;))
p.p.p.s.: My maid is going on a leave this sunday. God save my family from my food. AMEN!

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Surviving the Valentine's Day!

Love is in the air! Oh, no! Not again...The whole town is painted damn red and for a lovelorn lady left sulking at home, i find anything that is red, purely- annoying. PDA has reached dizzying heights and it is a real headache to watch doe- eyed beauties batting eyelashes at the most interesting specimens of human males! I flick the TV remote only to be mortified watching the video clip of Karnataka's ministers watching porn in the Assembly. Honorable Ministers, indeed! Suddenly it seems Kama Sutra has worked wonders for the Indian 'aam admi'. Where are the orange brigades who pledge to marry off couples in public places on V-Day? Pramod Muthalik was last heard a year back. Wonder what would be his punishment for the (S)EX Ministers. Sex is probably the most shunned topic and even love affairs at home are often hush hush affairs. But the rate at which couples elope and wed or live together is hitting the roof! All in the name of Love?

Come Vday and you are single? Why worry? Here is a detailed guide of surviving a VDay unscathed;)

Easier always to duck, than attend that delivery! Better, feign some illness- we damn sure know it is heart burn;) It can be a stomach ailment or a flu. Never attend office or colleges on V Day, lest you end up sulking the whole day looking at hordes of couples walking past you, as if you were a tree on the campus. Hit the bean bag, flick the remote, munch in your favorite 'lays' and gulp down the agony- you are not getting laid this year! Strict warning: Avoid cozy restaurants, candle lit diners, parks, gardens, beaches and movie halls at any cost.

This is a far better idea. You can always weave a tale of love that can put epics to shame. Buy DVDs of latest Bollywood romance flicks and there you have your story. Visit florists, shop for the most beautiful card, browse chocolates online and always keep yourself engaged in talking to the '(n)ever-present' girl/ boy on your mobile. Close your eyes often and pretend to be dreaming about your 'love'. Hard, but easier done if you can close your eyes and tell your seventh and eighth multiplication tables twice without a mistake. May be that would be till eternity;) Keep boasting! Pose with pictures of your teddy and you, a huge bouquet of red roses ( may be you can rent one from the unassuming florist a week earlier!) and a box of chocolates, that can be conveniently empty. Post the pictures on Facebook and twitter your KEWL LOVE COOCHIE COO! Tell your friends what a helluva time you are having with your girl/ boy friend. Take care to maintain it is a 'long distance' love.

 Always look out for the positive signs. Who knows, you may even land up at your loves' doorstep on V Day! That is, if you are not the milkman or postman. Watch out for the singles who are ready to mingle. This list is now HUGE- starting from our very own Bollywood hotties- Dippy to Bips, Ranbir to Sid. How to spot the singles? The best day to spot singles is VDay! They are alone, tense, drawn or even skeptic. Who knows, a walk in the evening might bring you close to your next partner.

 Be happy- you have no romantic interest. Remember VDay is a purely commercial holiday, with jewelers, restaurateurs and gift shop owners minting money. Thank Dear God that he saved your wallet from a catastrophe! Roam around malls and just window shop the cutest card, largest bouquet and biggest teddy. Use your pocket calculator and pump your fists, mate! You saved a few thousand bucks there. Bless The Lord, Amen!

p.s.: My sincere apologies to the guy in class nine who gifted me my first VDay card, who got duly turned to my mentor and received the thrashing of his life!
p.p.s.: Valentines' Day wishes to all! Have fun, single or couple;)
p.p.p.s: My VDay wishes to my dearest L. Thank you for the wonderful, wonderful gift this VDay. I know it blew a crater in your wallet;) I Love You!