Saturday, June 25, 2011

Baggage Belt Musings

You think your suitcase
is easy to spy,
rolling along the carousel
But can you really tell
that it's yours
when it's turned turtle?

Poor disorientated thing
Doesn't call out your name
You can almost see it
Struggle to be
Right side up,
once again,
and recognizable!

And the toughest is the
first in, last out part
you wait and you wait
with so many doubts
wondering if you'll ever get
the bag, and how
will you manage if you don't?
What will you need to buy at once,
what can be borrowed,
what can be done without?
More bags emerge,
Hope renews....
And you wait and you wait
with a dwindling crowd
witness the joy as each person
grabs his or her bag,

At last, your bag appears
You yank it off the belt
with a prayer of thanks
check the tag,
(even though you know it's yours)
and gladly leave the world
of baggage belts
Until you check in your
baggage on your next flight.

Friday, June 17, 2011

The rain came pouring down today

The rain came today in full force,
here, in Kolkata.
(Yesterday was just a gentle prelude
a "quality of mercy" kind of rain.)
The maid didn't come.
Couldn't, actually.
And in this age of cell phones,
she could phone and tell me
long before her
regular ETA.

The older son is here
and he kindly offered
to do the washing up
But I declined.
Kumar Gandharva's
Nirguni bhajans,
delicious droplets blowing in
through the open door
and a cool breeze
all added up to
Zenful dish washing.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Making Complete Asses of Ourselves!

A good friend of mine wanted to see the new Rituparno Ghosh film, 'Noukadubi', so we decided to go and see it this afternoon. Neither of us has any great knowledge of Bangla, but another non-Bengali friend of ours had seen it and thought it easy enough to follow, although she couldn't grasp the Tagore lyrics that are an important part of the film.
There were, of course, no sub-titles either.
We knew, even before seeing the film, that boats capsize in a storm, and there are identity mix-ups, as in those days (circa 1920) marriages took place sight unseen.
The film was absolutely beautiful. The visuals, the costumes, the period flavour of the interiors, the beautiful cast, poignant music, all added up to something wonderful.
Except that we could not follow the story.
My friend tells me that I snored a couple of times.
I told her to nudge me the next time I did so.
I struggled to keep my eyes open, and my friend yawned frequently.
We emerged from the hall feeling extremely stupid.

I came home and consulted my current fount of all wisdom, the internet. I found a few good links that told me the story, which I promptly sent to my friend. At least we know now what we'd seen, even if rather late in the day!

P.S: I particularly like the Upperstall synopsis and review.

Edited to add: The friend who had seen it and followed the movie had been able to do so because (she told us later) that she had read the story before going to see the film!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I am

This post is not about Onir's brilliant movie, which hits you hard with the truth of each of the four stories. Do see it if you can.

The Soul of Alec Smart has tagged me for this, and it seems to require a lot of introspection and even more revelations about me. I wonder if I even know myself so well..........

Every phrase needs to be completed with three answers about yourself. Easy to figure as you go.

I am

Mostly easy going, as long as you don't tread on my toes.

Paradoxically fond of having both lots to do and nothing to do.

More anxious than I care to admit.

I want

Peace and quiet. I hate noise in residential areas.

To ultimately live in a house of my own, so that I don't have to keep moving myself and my worldly goods across the country.

To get rid of a lot of those worldly goods!

I have

A family that means the world to me.

Wonderful friends who have enriched my life unimaginably.

A deep sense of gratitude for all that is good in my life.

I wish

That the world was less of a mess in so many terms- wars, environment, corruption, gender inequality, hunger and poverty, education.......

That I had the will power to be a lot lighter, and much less of a glutton.

That I knew a lot more about a whole lot of things. Well, I'm living and learning.

I hate

Violence in any form, especially mob violence.

Oppression and injustice, and the growing divide between the haves and the have-nots.

Fanaticism and fundamentalism.

I fear

Mob violence.

Natural calamities.

Debilitating illnesses for self and loved ones.

I hear

The sound of birds chirping every morning and at dusk.

The pain of others, which I try to alleviate but often cannot.

An undercurrent of intolerance, injustice and unfairness in the conversations of many.

I search

For missing/misplaced documents/keys/my husband's reading glasses/things that are right under my nose.

For inner peace and harmony.

For my role in this particular stage of my life.

I wonder

At the beauty of this world- of mountains and forests, trees and birds, babies and young children, wrinkled old joyful faces.

At the incredible depth and vastness of Hindustani classical music.

At man's inhumanity to man.

I regret

The grief others have caused to their dear ones, including me, by their lack of foresight and/or prudence.

My inability to smoothen the paths of those dear to me.

My lack of motivation to achieve cherished goals.

I love

My family and other animals!

Nature in all its glory.

Music of many kinds, movies, theatre, dance, art, literature- all things that enhance and enrich lives.

I always

Double check my house keys before stepping out of my front door.

Carry a large handbag.

Have extra strong sugar free mints in the bag!

I ache

For a more peaceful world.

For my late brother, who predeceased our parents.

For my children when they face tough times.

I usually

Walk 4-6 days a week.

Drink lots of water.

Keep my house reasonably tidy.

I am not

As fit as I'd like to be.

Very forgiving. I take my time.

Confrontational if I can help it.

I dance

Rarely now- I used to 'waltz' with my son when he was young.

When I want to express my freedom and joy at being alone.

When the beat gets inside me- I've been known to do a little jig in malls if the music's right.

I sing

Brilliantly in the bathroom!

Old Saigal songs.

Less than I used to, thanks to the discriminating listeners in my family!

I never

Say never: you never know what Life will make you do.

Wear synthetic materials if I can help it.

Manage to be as organised as I'd like to be.

I rarely

Offer unasked for advice.

Wear make up.

Wear high heels now- my feet are getting crabby:(

I cry

When I lose my temper.

At some memories of loss.

At suffering I cannot help heal.

I am not always




I lose

Things that are right under my nose, then I'm agitated till I've found them.

My cool, sometimes.

Perspective, sometimes.

I’m confused

By this tag!

By instructions on electronic equipment.

By many of the applications on my phone, most of which I choose to ignore.

I need

Many more bookshelves.

Less books. I do buy some, but I'm also a library user, but the SRE buys books quite compulsively.

A house with fabulous storage facilities and no clutter.

I should

Pray without ceasing.

Be a little less morbid than I've been recently.

Eat less.

I dream

Of Sant Kabir's 'Ghar Nyaara'.

Of not being diabetic.

Of being above such mundane things as chocolates!

This took a lot of thought and a fair bit of time. Whoever is inspired by this, please do take it up!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

What the SRE did while I was away

1) I had kept his house key in the Photon toggle pocket of his laptop bag, and told him where it was.
He comes home on Tuesday night and tries opening the front door with the toggle. He finally does get in, of course!
2) I had left a list of instructions stuck on the inside of the front door, written in bright red ink, headed with the words 'House Key.' (The rest were reminders to make sure taps, lights and fans, gas, air conditioners, doors etc., all were closed/switched off before he left the house).
On Saturday morning he locks himself out of the house without the house key, car keys and laptop bag. I guess that after two days the notice on the door ceases to register. Fortunately there is a spare key with our next door neighbours, and they were also at home, so a crisis is averted.
3) The SRE was in town for a couple of days and away in Durgapur for two days and one night. He managed his meals successfully, with a little 'phone-a-wife' for moral support. There was some food in the fridge which was successfully warmed up, consumed, and the leftovers were also put back. Eggs were cooked, so was Maggi. On Saturday he ordered in pizza, and very kindly kept some for me.
4) On Saturday evening he managed to twist his knee while playing golf. The driver picked me up from the airport, and I get back to find the SRE in pain. We've been icing and elevating the knee. Fingers crossed that it's nothing too serious.

All in all, not a bad report, but not a brilliant one either. I do think that my reluctance to leave him, garnered over the decades, is more or less justified. What do you say, gentle readers???