Showing posts from 2014

The Love of my Life

   I was introduced to the love of my life way back when I was a young, enthusiastic teacher at a special school. But we rarely met, perhaps once in a while when I chose to, but what with a million things to do and learn and also being deeply involved in teaching special children, I hardly noticed him. Little did I realise he would show up later in my life the way he did!    I got married and believed I had chosen the right guy, well...I also believed terrorism was what you saw in movies and child abuse was something that happened in very depraved societies and not in mine... ...but, to continue on my marriage, something was missing. I felt a void within me, an emotional chasm, and I felt very incomplete.    Meanwhile I started a family and within a span of 4 and half years I had two children! I struggled with my inner emotional void and external world of mundane chores. I felt so tied down, I wanted wings to fly, to dance and swirl and soar in the clouds. At that moment of despa

My Grandmother's hands

Here is a story I crafted for one of my storytelling was well appreciated by the audience... Soft and sooo fair; that was my grandmother’s hands. I could see her blue veins crisscrossing under her thin, translucent, stretched skin, it reminded me of baby rivulets gurgling through some snowy mountains… She was a very fair woman…and She told me  (actually my sister and I ) that when she got married at the age of 13 to my Grandfather who was 17 years old…everyone teased her by saying, he was as dark as kan mai (Kaajal) that it would rub off on her fair, snowy skin! Really they were such a contrast; Black and White! But I am telling you about her Hands, and those hands are what I cherish … Images of her sitting legs stretched, a she watched TV and tied the Jasmine flowers into strings… Images of her as she sat on the floor and made Thiri with soft white, natural cotton, and milk… Images of her as she made us all sit in a row…for Diwali…everyone in ord

Verse-Space - Are You on that Train?

Are you on that train? Rushing by. Moving so fast  I can scarcely see. The sounds and sights Wooshing by I look on A silent spectator. I strain and stretch To catch glimpses Of you  As it flashes by. I wave, I smile I sigh, I cry I am here but you go there. I know my thoughts But know not yours Where is the time? to stop and share  I too move on On wheels  That seem so slow Almost surreal. Memories and moments roll by me As I pick and choose some to cherish and see We know not  where we meet If we will  It may not be here...or there Or it could well be nowhere

Who is spiritual?

Funny question to ask...but if you know my path you will understand my question. My grandmother and grandfather were deeply religious and ritualistic, as is norm in a typical Brahmin family; and Iyengar to boot, they think they are the true blue Vaishnavaites...royalty even! My father and mother very theistic with an unquestionable, unshakable faith in the Lord. So growing up I was comfortable following their system, but in a half hearted lacklustre way. The obedient clasping hands in the temples or reciting shlokas when asked or prompted. Yet deep within me I was not sure why I was doing it. So I was quite happy to marry an agnostic. (That is perhaps the only point of difference with my partner that I do not mind! But that is another story.) Now having tossed and turned in this ocean of Samsara, I am keenly questioning this word spirituality or spiritualism. Right from the start I dismissed rituals as a fun aspect of the spirituality that I was a seeker of... But who then is

Marriage Musings

Life was going pretty smoothly, cruising along, when I was thrown a curve ball. Husband posted to Delhi and I am staying back to look after kids, career and interests.... This is something I wanted..aka..not exactly what I wanted...but..the universe chooses to give you what you want, but you cannot control How you get it. (If you have read Monkey's Paw by WW. Jacobs, you will get the flow of my thoughts and feelings). Last month or a month before that I was telling my Husband; I wished to experience staying alone, being responsible for myself and not happily passing the buck /cup of responsibility to an ever obliging spouse. The Universe decided to do as I said!  I envisioned alone in a beautiful cottage perhaps on a hill station, working for myself and being completely in charge of myself and my life. (yes, too many movies and books, my imagination is more than a bit over board on such things) Reality is: Government quarters, 2 kids, a car and a maid.

Hans Christian Anderson

My daughter picked up a beautiful book from our library (Thinkbox Library at Vignana Nagar). It is a collection of fairy tales by Hans Christian Anderson. At a time when Grimm's fairytales was popular, H.C.Anderson wrote original fairy tales. This book especially is gorgeous, with a foreword and snippets of personal anecdotes and encounters from his life preceding every tale; it is a must read. It is called Tales of Hans Christian Anderson, translated and Introduced by Naomi Lewis and illustrated by Joel Stewart. The illustrations are exquisite! I have also narrated an unusual story written by him called as the "The lost Collar" which is a delight to tell and of course there are many memorable ones, such as the Little Match girl, The Ugly Duckling and others. Here is a link to his website . Enjoy exploring, imaging, and fantasising...Humans have a special gift! ~ssstoryteller~ 

Boys are very empathetic...

Talking about boys and empathy may seem like an Oximoron(!), but trust me when I say that the species is not a lost cause in this front... Let me explain. Boys are empathetic towards different things that's all. It does not appear the same way as it looks like for girls. They show care and concern for their toys, they nurture their many hobbies and many more... I am not joking or making fun, I genuinely believe their empathy looks very different:)) But a very important requirement for this is positive attachment with the Mother!! Then a sure fire empathetic boy is going to make many women happy:)) Perhaps with a great potential to be an Internationally renowned Therapist ;) Talking about boys, I had a great time with my son one hot hot afternoon in Chennai. We were forced to walk down Santhome main road, after our auto broke down, in order to reach my sister's house. The topic under scrutiny was marriage as we had just drowned in a celebration for a close family membe

What do you think?

In the end, just three things matter - How well we have lived How well we have loved How well we have learned to let go Jack Kornfield What do you think?

The UberMall versus the CornerGrocer

This post sounds like a Boxing match between two teams, or perhaps WWF wrestling contestants. If there was a match the UberMall could win for sheer glamour factor, but I will hand over my personal  prize to CornerGrocer! The other day I was to make Sabudana Vadi and as I had no sabudana at home and I could not delay getting it, for you know how you need to soak it over night, I walked down to a local Mall to get it. In spite of walking through the aisles and searching for it, I could not find it. The place somehow looked as if it badly needed some cleaning and the staff were busy watching a cricket match, quite impervious to us customers. I know that this was not their usual operational style and was a little puzzled, only to realise that the owner was not sitting at his usual place that day. I had to buy the Sabudana, so I walked to another local grocer shop just a few metres away and asked for Sabudana. I was greeted with a bombastic smile and a spiel that blasted my ears for 2

Are you looking for Happiness?

How simple this sounds! If you wish to be happier, be humble says Gary Zukav, (yes, he is the one who wrote the best seller, "Dancing Wu Li Masters", a book that interprets Quantum Physics in all its metaphysical ways!!) I came across this book DWLM ( Hmmm...I am a true Indian with a penchant for acronyms), when I was studying and then later once more on my husbands book shelf. It is a tough read, as the technical aspects of Quantum physics went way over my head, and so I cannot imagine the same person has authored such an article or has gone on to form an organisation that goes by the name : Seat of the Soul Institute. But you must read this article: is it possible to practice, Humbleness, Forgiveness, Love and Clarity? I understand what he says but becoming such a transcendental soul is soooo difficult. Tell me what you think ~ssstoryteller~

February Tales

February has been a month of Tales. The most wonderful of them all was "The Kite Flyer of Beijing", created by John McCormick and his sons William and Connor. There is another story here...! I was to tell a story at the Chennai Storytelling Festival and decided it would be this beautiful story about an old Chinese man and his reluctance to let go of his life, he then takes the form of a kite and finally decides to go... It came to me at a time when I was looking for solace after my mother's death. Yet there was a clause that asked me to contact the author if I wanted to use the story in any way. I did (after some prodding from a friend) and the rest is his-story!! John not only gave me permission but also wrote about our email exchanges in his column on Huffington Post. Truly a Grace from above... You can read it here: He also blogged about it on his website: http://dadtellmeasto

Book Club at Streisand's Art

When we undertake an activity for the sheer pleasure of engagement, then the results we get are un-measurable. With those profound words, I take you to view some pictures; The Book Club I facilitate at Think Box library, is always looking for things to do differently. Last year we visited a Printing Press and had a collection of articles/ drawings by the club members published into a book. This year I really wanted to showcase how illustration and visual images,,can inspire story creation and vice-versa. The options were to interview illustrators, that is, have someone talk about book illustrations or to take them to an Art Gallery to just experience Art in its real sense. This could inspire the children we thought (Bhakti Shah of Think Box is a great support and in fact drives many of these activities). Mails flew back and forth as we tried to find an Art Gallery for kids, that would support us, as we were looking at taking 11 really enthusiastic children

January Tales _ Gandhi's Goat

January arrived on a Jet plane and took off on a rocket! Where did it go? Celebrating the birth of the constitution and the countries pride at being by, of and for the is a tale that appeared in Open Sesame edition of DH in 2004. I found it simply hilarious and so very well written. I was in fact looking for quirky stories around the Freedom struggle and this is what I got enjoy! Deccan Herald, Friday, October 01, 2004 The diary of Gandhi's goat KAVITHA MANDANA takes you through the pages of a very special historic diary! History has been unfair to me, and it’s time I take my rightful place in the story of our freedom struggle. I come from an illustrious family. It was my grandmother whom Kasturba Gandhi picked to provide goat’s milk for Gandhiji when he fell seriously ill at Bombay in 1918. Gandhiji had refused cow’s milk because cows were ill-treated in the process of m ilk-extraction. So it was goat’s milk that brought the Father of the Nation,