Sunday, February 2, 2014


"God Bless you sir, just asking for a rupee , not much" .She said.  I turned back and saw her down on her knees asking for money again.

Her brown locks , some of them caressing the top of her nose , some resting near her face , somewhat  messed up yet so beautiful. Her big black eyes , little poignant yet not so far from hope or prospect. She was probably around 10-12 years old.

"So what are you going to do with a rupee? " I asked.

Before she could answer I added , "Better you can eat something, if you are feeling hungry?". While I was busy buying grocery from a shop , she quickly ran to the next shop and started pointing towards something with a sheepish smile which  resembled the kind when I used to ask my parents of something I knew they would not easily agree to give. As i was unable to get a view of what she was pointing to , I just nodded at her and kept buying grocery.

In 5 minutes or so , I lost sight of her but was able to see her again getting ready to ask for money from other people.

In a haste , I went near her and asked her what would she like to have to which she replied 'Biscuits'. The one's with 'Cadbury'. It was as if she had underlined cadbury the way it came out.

I bought her a chocolate much to her delight. She looked happy.

Just when I was about to leave , saw many others going close to her wanting her to share what she had got, may be? Also some of them came asking for money  from me.

I sometimes don't know what to do in such situations but this time I sat near the little girl and avoided every one else.

The girl as smart she was (probably understanding  everything happening) uttered ,"I can bear this but don't want to finish it quickly, want to enjoy eating it."

And that made me leave.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

My Christmas

To me Christmas has always been 'waking up and checking my pillow' for gifts which would include varieties of chocolates , candies and everything a kid would have liked. But yes over the years I did come to know that it was my dad who was the Santa.

Ten years back , i was run down by a scooter while crossing the road being so excited carrying all my gifts. I remember my eye getting blue after that and my mother forcing me to drink milk with turmeric mixed in it.

When i did not find anything near my bed , one early Christmas morning , just could not believe it. I walked down the stairs and saw my mom cooking .  I asked her ' if it was Christmas' ( obviously for a reason). Then making use of my acting skills , i went to sleep again. An hour later, twas my dad trying his best not to disturb my sleep and sliding a pack under my pillow.

This morning , today , miles away from my home town , from no where i checked my bed for any gifts when my friend wished me a Merry Christmas. In the process , i revisited all those moments. Feels great!

Sunday, September 23, 2012


It was a long break , I took from writing , did write some occasional pieces while travelling in buses but nothing substantial. Now I take time to brood over my visit to Perumbavoor which I believe is the best time I have had outside my home.

It was March 2012 and probably not the best time to be in Coimbatore . It was hot ,sticky and not at all pleasant to say the least. Being away from the North Indian food for quite a while then , I told myself not to make that face while having Dosa three times a day. With that , I had already started finding some valid reasons how and why it's necessary to drink hot water and to use coconut in everything you make.

So I booked tickets for Perumbavoor , was very excited to meet 'Latha Prem Sakhya and family'. We had met  just  once at a literary festival. We hardly had any interaction except for the formal introduction.She calls me 'A young shy man from Chandigarh' . We became friends later on when I sent her a mail noticing something which she had not shared with anybody.

It was 4 in the morning and the bus had taken a little more time than expected. I knew it was not the best of times to reach their place but didn't have much control over it too. So as it turned out to be , just had to walk a mile to reach where they had to come to pick me up. Same is the case , when I go to meet my parents ,just some walking and I wait for them to come.

She came out of the car and I touched her feet, I could see she was very happy to have recognized me.She introduced me to her husband 'Yogendra Sakhya' who seemed to me as  simple and easy going.We reached home. Just for a while I got scared when she told me about the dogs,We entered inside and Yes , I was tired. We didn't talk much then. Just before sleeping , I checked out some of the books placed in the rack.What an experience,Period!

I woke up in the morning and just could not believe my eyes. It was so beautiful , with cats playing , trees and so much of green around , birds playing their part too. I rushed down stairs to find both of them. To my surprise , both of them were in the kitchen making preparations for breakfast and lunch.(I wonder at what time did they get up?). The house had an inexplicable allure to it. All of us talked for a while in the kitchen itself , where on display was Mr Yogendra's humor.'When he  talked , It was all sense'.

Being away from Chandigarh for last few months , this was the first time ,I had such a breakfast , with love written all over it. After finishing the breakfast we were headed to go out.

We started our journey , All of us had in our mind to cover as many places possible.We actually visited a lot of places but what stood out for me was watching a baby elephant in an Elephant Training Center  , but I did not like the 'zoo'. It was a disgusting display of humanity . Animals sitting in their own filth , in cages too small for them to stretch is not an attraction at all.

Nevertheless,sitting next to the Periyar river was so relaxing and comforting. I so wanted to write something there.

Periyar River

Up next , We went into a forest , leaving aside all the bushes ,  We kept walking. What I remember was hearing a lot of experiences from her , how and when they used to come there with little 'Jenn' (Their daughter). I wanted answers to a lot of questions from her , I thought it was the best time and we discussed on a lot of things thereafter.We returned back , had lunch which was absolutely mouth-watering with perfectly  cooked fish with what flavors and not to forget the chicken too. Just that I could not eat as much as they had expected me to eat , I guess.

With Yogendra Sakhya

I went upstairs and played with the cats, took some rest and prepared myself to go back to Coimbatore. I  asked her for a book and she gave me a book of her's. That book had a mysterious ability to pull me into it , I would always cherish the role these guys have played in shaping me up. She also gifted me a 'Mundu' (A South Indian Dhoti) and I regret of not sending her my picture wearing that.

I was back in Coimbatore and having Dosa again. But this time it was really tasting like that brilliantly cooked fish. God Bless Them.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The evening walk: I made my day

Most days , nearly all the days when i am walking , I take a similar route. A route to a destination. Today was different though. There was a 'spring' in my step. I was alone but not really. I walked slowly perhaps more slower than an occasional jogger or cyclist would require.

I had nowhere to go so I took time and enjoyed the surroundings. I mixed with the  expressions , colors, fragrance and the changing music , nodded at the people I saw and waved to the drivers of the two and four wheelers going in opposite directions. I could not stop myself to talk with those two young girls wearing beautiful sarees. I tried eating a lot of bizarre things.I visited a bookstore.Just then I could see the animation , people had for shopping.I just stood there and laughed with them. 

Too often , I am in a hurry and thinking about things I shouldn't. I take the most  direct route from A to B and my mind is focussed on the new task. And in doing so I mess opportunity to savor this moment in time , a gift of present.

I made myself happy today. That's how i made my day.The only thing I missed was a camera.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


I still feel that taction
where sweat had a role
The liberty to leave
Grip that gripped
A fraction longer

A start which had an end
Your smirk poses to fend
You and you , a cliche.

My mind and body perspire
To the exhaustion of your expectations
I still feel that warmth
That comfort
The ethereal breath
And the fingers locked with yours

Making head ways
I try to deceive
Pretend to be at ease
Intruding in with your whiskers
You bring in the zing.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


All consumed and moving with the beat
I stepped into the bus and looked for a seat
An incensed nudge opened my eyes
The up's and down's
Bumped her aside.

I stood up giving her a subtle strike
Turned my back to the glares and the strife

With an add-in volume 
Adjusted the track
Made an effort but never came back.

Set to go 
With a look of recession
What made my day was the
 Wink with that passion.

Sunday, December 4, 2011


From quite some time now , I was thinking to write something about Kerela. Days before my visit , I was already excited with the idea of knocking around the God's own country. In Kerela Express from New Delhi to Trivandrum ; I could smell literature watching the modulations in flavors , dresses , languages and what not. More importantly the typical South Indian food had started and the only thing I hated (just a little bit) was too much of rice.

'Murgan' served us really well in the train
 The Auto Rickshaw guy was the first person we met in Trivandrum (who could barely speak English). He was a lovely guy who kept smiling all the way through just that he charged us a little extra. Even though my hair might have the same number of curls as a Malayali guy but it was the accent that was hard to match. I entered the cultural complex known as Vylopilly Samskrithi Bhawan which was the venue for the Literary Festival. It made me fall in love with the natural and the architectural aspect of the place. Why would someone want to move out from this place, I was thinking? (I actually had to attend a literary festival there for two days.)

View from the 'Bhawan'
 So, finally the morning, hours before the event just had to be kick started. I had been feeling the fresh air for about an hour now. The air certainly felt relaxing and the tinge of ‘nip’ was refreshing. Breakfast, I expected some idli but it was Idiyappam with egg curry something new for me but a  taste worth remembering. Also it was a good beginning and sign of things to come. In the evening I went to the Shangumugham beach in Trivandrum , Though I  could not make it in time to catch the 'sunset'. The fact that I don't understand Malayalam made me fall in love(again) with the language and people speaking it more and more. Then we(I went there with my friend) thought of exploring Trivandrum by feeling it's essence. We wanted to dissolve , merge , with everyone , with the city.  Soon , thereafter we were soaking up the environment through the streets.  

At shangumugham beach
I used to be a vegetarian before I had been to Kerela. Just when I say that , What i do remember is the wonderful fresh water cooked fish we had at 'Allepey' in a houseboat , The experience worth a thought. The houseboat went backwaters , It was exquisite and natural , with coconut trees and water all around me. Air brought that disposition and aura around. I just wanted to stay, stay forever. Not to forget the food we were offered (at the houseboat) . Majestic to say the least.  We stayed there for 24 hours.

These guys were wonderful

Inside the Houseboat
In next , we went to Kanyakumari which totally left us disappointed . We covered a lot of distance to get there only to find not so good food , temples and temples. I was more interested in the natural aspect of Kerela rather than the religious one. Yes , if they (temples) have something to do with the architecture , then I can give it a go but other than that I don't like going in one temple after the other. Completely my view. Yes must confess that we  did not have time to catch the sunset there as well.
At Kanyakumari

Some temple
I don’t care what anyone says but I found the place more at peace (comparing it with north). We traveled a lot in bus as well , Watching through the windows I could only see jewelery and sarees all over the cities. By the way , how beautiful women look in those sarees. Someone asked me why don't you take one for your mother. It's different here in north , Simplicity sometimes goes begging. Women wear sarees only in the marriages plus the sarees are worn the other way around. There , people are so used to it , I only see my mother messing everything up while wearing a Saree. 

With Mrs. Sandhya at the festival
Just when we were about to leave Sandhya chechi packed such wonderful food for us which had some wonderful flavors and juices. By the way she is Chief Editor of Indian Ruminations , a journal for Indian English Writers. Some Alarmed souls, Some Enormous minds, some beautiful girls, colossal poetry, what delicious food and still that peace. It sums up our visit.

Wanted to write a lot more , lot on Mullaperiyar dam issue as well. I leave it to my next post. All these days I did not write and read so much , i did miss reading her blog. It's all about understanding and no demonstration sometimes. I do connect a lot with her.

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