Friday, April 24, 2009

Yesterday -

I cooked veg Hakka noodles for lunch. The Mr and The Implet were much impressed.
Then I made veg. korma and chappathi for dinner.
Chappathi from scratch.

I felt very domesticated.

Today -  Kitchen closed!
Both lunch and dinner - Eat out & Take out!

Now I feel alive. Totally!

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Thursday, April 09, 2009

A smack from Joe!

April is apparently National Poetry month. I haven't really signed up for any of those write a poem a day marathon. Thankfully :) But when I can, I decided I shall try to post a few verses. It's been ages since I wrote a decent poem, plus the fact that all ideas seem to hit me after i've hit the bed, do nothing to improve the quality. This is my first attempt. And yeah ignore the punctuation, I'm extremely bad at it :)

For prompts go here.

Prompt: Routine

Not the alarm
or the milkmaid.
Not even the neighbour's 
crazy dog
or the sparrows it chased.
It has always been
"Ammai Kaapi!" -
her very own wake up call.

"Ammai Kaapi!"
Some years on the sofa,
bleary eyed and in pigtails,
a hot tumbler of foaming love and
the lost slumber easily forgotten.

"Ammai Kaapi!"
Moments on a plastic chair
and one last gulp
trickling down the throat
like appa's advice -
a melancholy slow march.

Twenty years later
"Ammi Kaapi!"
Another day, another wake up call.
She looks at her smile,
sinfully delicious.
Her tiny hands reach out 
from the crib.
Who changed the alarm?

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Wednesday, April 08, 2009

55 WBR - The Orbis Terrarum Challenge

I decided to do the Orbis Terrarum Challenge this year. I know, I can hear you complain that for a person who hates writing reviews, I seem to sign up for too many challenges. And no, the Implet isn't any well-behaved either but a girl needs to make life interesting, however miniscule the change maybe :)  Please to read the rules if you want to take part.

The English Patient - Michael Ondaatje (Canada)
Totally deserves the Booker prize. A tad slow to start but keeps you engrossed once you’re in. A captivating story told in the non-linear style and filled with vivid imagery. The desert never looked as beautiful as through the English Patient’s eyes. Every character’s quirks and the way they relate to each other wonderfully captured.

Climbing the stairs - Padma Venkatraman (India)
A brilliantly written YA novel. Set in British India during the freedom struggle of the 1940s. Every habit/tradition of the Indian Brahmin household is explained in a matter-of-fact manner with no propaganda whatsoever. Loved it for bringing Chennai to my living room. Life through Vidya’s eyes is truly beautiful, even if painful at times. Awesome!

Genghis Khan - Birth of an Empire - Conn Iggulden (England)
The historical fiction that takes you on a horseback ride to Mongolia, makes you shiver in the bitter cold and long for airag, however atrocious it may taste. No little detail of the tribal lifestyle is missed. The book gives a whole new perspective to Genghis Khan and what it takes to be an emperor.

Challenges covered: Orbis Terrarum, New Author, War Through Generations (Climbing the stairs)

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Monday, April 06, 2009

Besotted with Dark Chocolate

It's been raining all afternoon. I've been sitting on my couch, munching dark chocolate and melting everytime the camera looks into Surya's eyes and Sudha Ranganathan croons 'anal melae pani thuli'. Sigh. 

Romance is not just the flowery verses or the passionate kisses. It's the tingling sensation in the back of your spine as he casually tucks a strand of hair behind your ear and walks away. It's the sound of fluttering butterflies in your stomach, as you see him walk towards you, his eyes never leaving your face.

Sigh. Sigh.

Dark chocolate, rain, me and Surya :)
Repeat song : 'anal melae pani thuli'

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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Lost in Mail

Dear You,

Today I missed you. I missed that email that you promised aeons ago but is yet to see sunlight. I miss our senseless banter about everything and nothing. I tell myself I am not the Sun in everyone's universe yet I long to be atleast like the non-existent Pluto who gets a mention once in awhile.

I am writing in a public forum as I know you will realize this is for who keeps even smiles and not just tears private. I love to live my life on a stage- some parts atleast make for excellent ratings, I'm sure. It might not sound like the best idea but hey! I am not the smart one here :)

The reason I write to you is it makes me sound intellectual even when all I am blabbering is some emotional balderdash. You take all the silliness out of my ambitions; the scars from slaughterhouses may not disappear but you show me how to overlook them and move on. Smiling. It is not easy, it never is but you taught me how.

For all that you never say or do, you still make a difference. To me.
And that is why I write. Even if you don't.


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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Nyah & The Balloon Herder

The day dawned as beautiful as it can ever be for six year old Nyah. She and her Papa spent the whole day at Solberg Airport watching thousands of hot air balloons lift into the sky, like huge colourful marshmallows. It was the most breathtaking scene Nyah had ever witnessed. Also the fact she didn't have to share her darling Papa with her baby brother was an added bonus. Not that she disliked him but sometimes she wanted her Papa just for herself.

Then Papa had bought her the prettiest red balloon and the day just went from beautiful to Fantabulously Greatest Day EVER! Well, it was so until now. Nyah looked wistfully at the sky at a red speck fast disappearing into the dusk. A lone tear fell on her cheek. One moment she was holding onto her red balloon and the next, a strong gust of wind had stolen it from her small fingers. Her Red Balloon. 

As she looked into the slowly darkening sky for the miraculous re-appearance of her balloon, her sad eyes saw a flickering light in the distance. For a moment Nyah forgot about her balloon and looked at the light, which much to her surprise seemed to be coming towards her.  Could it be a shooting star? She opened her mouth but no words came out. The small light grew bigger and bigger and finally came in through her window, tumbling onto the floor with her. 

Nyah stared in disbelief at the girl on her floor. Can girls fly? Before she could open her mouth and call for her mom, the intruder spoke.

"Water...please...water", she gasped.

Nyah finally sprang to life and got her guest the glass of water on her table. She wanted to run for help but something about the girl made her stall. She looked at her guest as she gulped down the water. She was a chubby little girl, not much older than Nyah, with a pair of pigtails tied with the flashiest pink ribbons. The girl wore a plaid skirt and white shirt with the sleeves rolled up. Everything about her was plain and ordinary if only Nyah could ignore those glowing wings on her back. 

"There you go. Thanks for the water," said the girl. "My name is Mayalou. I'm a herder in Loonydom." 

"A what? From where? Why are you in my room?" Nyah couldn't stop the questions. 

Mayalou smiled. She walked to the bed and plonked herself on it. The soft cushiony mattress  moved with her and she started jumping on it.

"Hey this is fun! Whee!" shrieked Mayalou. "Can I do this again?" she asked Nyah but jumped more before there was any answer from her host.

Nyah stood flabbergasted by the door. She looked at the chubby girl jumping on her bed

"Whoopsie! Whee! Come, join me" shouted Mayalou.

Finally the little girl in Nyah gave in and soon both the girls exchanged information as they tumbled and rolled on her spring mattress. 

"I am Nyah. I am six years old. I love..."

"balloons," finished Mayalou.

"How do you know that?" gasped Nyah.

"I told you. I am a herder of balloons. When The Master saw you cry as your red balloon left you, he decided to send me down to cheer you up.”

"Really? A balloon herder? Not a fairy?" Nyah tried her best to come to terms with all that she was hearing. 

"Oh no! Me? A fairy?" Mayalou laughed till tears started streaming down her face.Then she continued with her story.

"Who would want to be a boring fairy? Life as a balloon herder is much funner. You see every single balloon that flies into the sky is brought home by herders like me. We nurse them, play with them and finally send them back down to another little kid."

“What games do you play with the balloons?” asked Nyah. The story was getting more interesting. Maybe she can go with this herder girl to that Loony place. 

“We put them in a room with a huge fan and as they try to fly away we catch them. They love jokes so we tell them jokes and make them giggle. But these red ones are too silly. At the hint of a joke they would burst out laughing, and then we would spend hours stitching them up and filling them with air. The red ones are too much trouble, if you ask me.”

Nyah laughed aloud imagining a red balloon bursting open with laughter. She longed to see how the herders went about their jobs. 

“Can I come with you? I want to see Loonydom. Papa can take me and baby in our old Chevy.”

Mayalou sighed. Sometimes she wished kids just didn’t believe in fairies and gnomes and balloon herders. But where would she be, if everyone thought a torn balloon was trash? It was kids like Nyah who kept her alive, in their hearts. 

She gently took Nyah’s hands into hers.

“I’ll make you a deal. Next time you get a balloon, whisper your name into it as you set it free and I’ll come and visit you. Maybe I’ll bring some friends along and we can jump on this bed?”

It wasn't what Nyah wanted but she didn't want to lose her new friend. So she smiled and clapped her hands in glee.

“I’ll send you a balloon tomorrow.”

Mayalou smiled and slowly climbed onto the window. With one final wave, she flew into the dark sky and soon all that Nyah could see was a dull, flickering light.

Just like that, the day turned beautiful once again.

Post-Script: Maya loves balloons. Any given day, you can find atleast one balloon in our house. This story sounded a lot better when I told it to her. But when you write it down weeks after it was originally thought, all those lovely ideas don't sound as good. I guess she wouldn't mind :)


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