For no reason…

He offered to help the old lady in picking up the groceries that had spilled out of her green bag all across the staircase when they bumped into each other this cold winter morning. The lady, who was new to the building complex, on the other hand, had a few foul words to speak of youngsters who have no respect whatsoever for the elderly, how a child may have played with the elevator to break it and how painful it was for her to walk up the two flights of stairs. He adjusted his shades while he picked up her groceries and listened to whatever the old lady chose to say and then, apologised again, with a smile. The lady finally smiled too and offered him a warm cuppa at her place. ‘May be, I’ll drop by after work, I am kind of running late‘, he replied politely, ‘what’s your unit number?

213, drop by when you are back in the evening, where do you work son?‘ the lady tried to make up for coming out as a rude person a few seconds earlier.

I sure will, oh, I work at the aged care center just two blocks from here, I am really grateful they let me continue even when I lost my eye sight last year in a road accident, I am lucky I have lived here all my life so I practically wasn’t impacted. Anyway, I’ll see you in the evening…. and really sorry again‘, he left hurriedly then cruising through the rest of the stairs, while the lady stood still, as darker memories came rushing back to her.

The person on the other end of phone had said, almost a year ago now on a cold winter morning similar to today, ‘I am really sorry Mrs Stevens, Mr Stevens was in a road accident this morning, I am afraid he couldn’t make it, His car ran over a traffic signal and hit a pedestrian…”she barely had heard anything more. She was informed by the police later that week that the pedestrian her late husband had hit was out of danger but has lost his eye sight. The pedestrian asked for complete privacy thereafter and any efforts that she made to get in touch went in vain.

I told him to uber that morning. The doctors had clearly asked him to refrain from driving, his eyesight was getting weaker everyday, reflexes getting slower and he couldn’t differentiate between the traffic signal colors….if only we didn’t become so stubborn with age….Mrs Stevens thought, as she slowly climbed up the stairs.

~

R

It sure was a Happy Mother’s Day!

I am a worrier…no you read it correctly, ‘worry-ier’ not ‘warrior’. And ever since I became a mum, I believe I have turned into this paranoid me where my brain constantly filters all incoming information and thoughts first through a does-it-have-a-direct-impact-on-my-child lens and then what-about-an-indirect-impact lens followed by a I-cannot-see-an-impact-but-there-must-be-one-so-lets-make-one-up lens.

Its like my mind comes up with these wierd sense-less negative scenarios and they constantly play in the backdrop of all activity happening in my mind. At first, I used to blame my inner software tester, where the most important attribute to have is to be able to identify scenarios where the system would break and fail. But I think it got too far into my little ‘mommy-brain’.

My worst fear and a cause of constant worry was (and always will be, I guess) that my child will inherit my bad habits or acquire those traits of mine or shall I say drawbacks, which I am not proud of. Worse, what if she inherits my health problems…I would never forgive myself.

A vicious circle of negativity, ey! However, what came about as the most beautiful gift this Mother’s day was something that has slapped these negative thoughts down. My 8yo wrote me a poem, A POEM…..I wonder where she gets it from!!

So what if I pass on a few of my not-so-wonderful talents, such as the ability to sleep for 18 hours straight, at least she’s got something good from me, and heck ya, she’s much better at this than me. See it for yourself:

I Love You Mum

I love roses, I love lilies, but most of all I Love You

and that will always be so true

You hug me so tight

and wake me up when bright

Thank you for all you have done for me

and teach me so much so I succeed

I can rely on you and you can too

so Bestie, I Love You!!

~~Aa & her rainbow friend

N2knyJz1S2SBUH0gF5FzcgTold ya so!!

I hope all you mummies out there had a memorable day….I know I sure did!!

Love

R

Tagged: Momma Drama

We all go through three phases in life. ‘My-mum-my-Superhero’ phase lasts for the first 10 years or so. Its the time when you look up to your mum for anything and everything; she’s the most beautiful face in the world with a cuddle so warm it could just melt your fears away. You tell her everything, share every dilemma, seek her advice on everything and apply it too.

Then comes the fun ‘I-am-the-rebel-hero’ phase. Pretty much when puberty hits. Suddenly, mum’s the one person who knows nothing. You pretty much know it all and know it better. Advice….Nah! Who needs that when you are high on ‘I have to prove I am a grown up’ hormones. Forget about sharing every minute detail of your life, telling her where you are and how long you’ll be there falls below the priority line on our growth chart.

‘My-mother-was-right’ phase follows, usually after having kids of your own. You cry while feeding your child at 1:46am, remembering and cherishing memories of your childhood, you appreciate how your mum could listen to the same story you just had to share with her endless number of times, how you were the top of her priority list every single time, how you became so mean to her, may be even outright rude at times, what pain she may have to brace while raising you…..and all you do is Thank her in your heart for simply being your mum and try and hope and pray that your child sees the ‘superhero’ in you one day.

Life is a full circle, one may wonder

An innocent rain is childhood, teenage a thunder

A storm is necessary at times to shake things up

Let’em fly, rain or thunder, wings up

Fly back home they always will

Aah…The joys of parenting

An empty nest at times

At times, all blanks fill

~

R

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mi Acento!

It is a trait I was born with, definitely passed on to me genetically. It just happens so organically that I sometimes don’t even realise I am doing it. Hubby dear, however, catches it, if he is there of course, almost instantly and tells me am doing it again. That doesn’t guarantee that I would stop though, most of the times it is out of my control.

I start talking in the accent of the person I am talking to. Language of course is mine, but accent shifts to that of the other person. Now you know what the tagline on my home page means, eh ‘I am to you what you are to me’. My tone, of course, follows my accent.

An Indian or anyone who has been to India would know that there are more than 120 major and about 1600 regional languages spoken in the land of diversity. The language, or accent, at least the tone differs every 2 blocks or so. My dad mostly worked in the state of Haryana in India, but he met and worked with people from all over India – Bihar, Andhra, Kannada, you name it! And I always used to wonder how does he do it. He used to talk to them in English or Hindi but in a completely different accent to how he would speak to us. I found it very inspiring. He mentioned that people feel comfortable talking to him as speaking to them in a familiar accent soothes them and makes them feel at home.

I had little exposure at practicing because all my class friends were mostly locals. I dont know about my Hindi or English accents back then, but my grasp of my mother tounge (Punjabi) was and remains, utterly horrible! My cousins would always beg me to stop trying, should I even dare to talk to them in Punjabi, as I never caught the accent or even the tone right.

I got my break when I moved to Cyprus with hubby darling. He had never known of my hidden talent. We both worked for the same organisation there and had a multi cultural team with people from Romania, Ukraine, Israel and of course Indians and Cypriots. My team members loved me and until then I didn’t know I had already started exploiting my talent. But once, hubby overheard me talking to a Romanian colleague and all hell broke loose. ‘Why are you making fun of the poor girl?‘ He lashed out. ‘When did I do that and How?‘. I was told off. Eventually, he did realise that I don’t mean harm and definitely do not mean to insult, and I really have no way to turn off this weird capability of mine.

I nailed them all. If I ever have any chance in the show-bizz, this is definitely going in my resume – Indian, American, Romanian, Greek and most definitely Isreali –  Its the perfect pothuct goup, as in the product group!! Beautiful accents all!!

Work took me to Malaysia and I nailed the local accent there as well. Hubby dear hated it!! Irritated him to the core!! Mission accomplished!

But I was completely and literally lost for words when we had an Australian join our senior management in KL. What embarassment it caused me when, forget about copying his accent, I could barely understand a word of his question during a governance meeting. I made sure, after that incident, that I never run into him again. Stuck to the written word for communication through the rest of my tenure there. I was just not ready and no where close to recovering from this gap in my oh so well accomplished talent.

Bless dear husband, for finding a job in the land down under shortly there after. I was scared , how was I supposed to survive, communicate with locals, find a job here when I struggled to make sense of each syllable popping out of their mouth. First few days were the worst, I could never make eye contact while talking, I kept looking at their lips, they may have excused me for while, perhaps thinking I am partly deaf. But it got to me, I had to make it work. I started watching the local TV, observing/over hearing conversations at cafes, basically redeployed all techniques that I used, to learn English in the first place, as I gradually unlearnt my accent and incorporated Aussie toungue twister lingo. Voila! Few months later, hubby dear started getting irritated again and I knew I got it!! Fair dinkum mate!!

~R

A lens never lies

Most people judge their fitness on how many miles they can walk without huffing & puffing, or what their BMI is; I on the other hand, judge my fitness based on how I look in a photograph. If I look fat, I am unfit, no matter what the weighing scale says; and vice versa. And yes, I have heard of the photo editing tools, and I know the latest ones can even make you look as proportionate as Barbie, but I abominate them from the bottom of my heart, you simply shouldn’t cheat like that.

Looking good in photographs boosts up my inner strength as nothing else does. I used to love being hubby’s model a decade ago, He would spend hours clicking them and I proudly shared them. But you know what, you do gain a lot when you eat lots of cake everyday, and I am not talking about wisdom here. I got the shock of my life when I looked at my then photos 2 years ago, I looked like I had another me seamlessly attached to me. I didn’t really do anything about it at the time though, as I had no motivation, aka ‘photo sessions’ aka holidays or parties coming up. Infact, I started detesting the camera, would hate getting clicked and got even more discouraged and self depriciating if I got to look at any pictures of mine. Aah! Feeling sad on how you look makes you take a guilt trip and is basically not a good space!!

Things are different now. My lifetime dream vacay is coming up. 9 weeks to go!! The motivation is at its peak. Because you cannot be in THE New York and look like a walking balloon, and you most certainly cannot share your photos with the GoldenGate Bridge looking larger than the bridge itself.

To not let the motivation die out any short of the finish line, I have fixed (lots of) rewards for me when I am on this holiday. And to keep my little exercise and healthy eating routine going, I tried a little something today, I did not shy away from getting clicked at an event at work. It served as a checkpoint, established that my routine is working and I am on the right track and at the same time, gave me hope that I can too regain my inner confidence soon.

Umrika!!!

1.4 billion of Indians dream of going to America. I know the current population of India is only 1.325, I am also counting the children who will be born today!! Don’t get me wrong, not all want to live there, but they definitely want to visit the U the S of the A, at some point in time in their life.

My obsession with the States began when I had someone repatriated from there join me in grade 3 at my school back in India. Jasmine, her name was. She was by far the prettiest Sikhni I had ever seen, and believe me I had seen a lot, being in a Sikh school. Her school bag, her pencil box, her stationary, even her shoes were atleast 10 years ahead of mine. Blonde hair and fair skin, but what struck me the most was her confidence. I had not known that children that age are even capable of exuberating that amount of confidence. She wouldn’t shy away even with her broken ‘Hindi’. Her English accent would bring sarcy comments to her, but that never deterred her one bit. She kept on. For a seven year old me, it became a generalised impression of all Americans, there on. And there began the desire to see this inspiringly advanced country for myself. I wanted that life where I speak English fluently and own the latest stationary. What simple motivation to go US, innocent days!!

Another prolonged and perpetual motivation throughout my childhood was my mum telling (read light-hearted complaining to) me and all others about my uniquely rebelious ways. ‘Isko to America mein paida hona chahiye tha‘, she would say, ‘Yahan India mein kaise aa gayi’, which translates to – she should have been born in America, she doesn’t belong to Indian culture. Not to blame her, as I never did fit in (and I know, in her heart, she was and is proud of me for that). I think the mandatory compliance instructions to even have a chance at being tagged a sunder-sushil-gunvati-bhagyashali-larki (most eligible girl) at the time in my part of the world were – wear salwar kameez and dupatta with no more than 2.6cms of skin showing, be an introvert, don’t talk to guys, do not laugh loudly when a boy is looking at you even if your girlfriend cracks a really funny joke, keep your eyes riveted to the ground when talking to elderly, specially males, in short, do not breathe! and have no life! I complied to none of these rules, with my lovely parents supporting my back all the time and there goes the story.

The only reason I entered the IT corporate world, years later, was because this was, at the time, a hopeful and easy pathway to reach USA. Go IT boom! I was right, the path definitely was full of opportunities and I did bump into those not once but four times in my first 5 years. Alas! I could avail none! Work permit renewals, passport renewals and ultimately the family way came in the way of my dream way! No complains though, I know everything happens at its own time.

And the time has finally come. 8 years on, from the last time I was offered a business visit to USA, I finally have decided that its about time I spend my own vacay funds to visit my dream destination. The planning has begun four months in advance. So when my bestie from Uni, who now lives there, was amazed when I shared my itinerary spreadsheet with her, which literally comprises of a low level detailed plan accurately jotting down my whereabouts at any given minute during the 4 week holiday, she asked me if I had become a freak since the last time we met, probably suffered a blow to my head which caused me some sort of compulsive disorder. I replied ‘This is US baby!! Years & years of research and love for the land, it has to be perfect, every moment utilised to satisfaction’. Hopefully, it will be!!

 

 

 

 

 

Make it work (out)

For a long time now, the cycle has been Eat, Drink, Work, Sleep, and Repeat! Its got to change now! Its a new year, afterall. No, I did not realise this 13 days later. Just that this new year day, when I had the universal urge to make a few resolutions yet again, I held back. I thought let me check back in with myself in 2 weeks time, if I am still positive about making any sort of commitment, I’ll do it then! So the time has come and I must commit, because I want to!

Those who know me well, know how much I love change. Change excites me! I love to move houses if not the country, change cars, heck! I have even made darling daughter switch schools three times already, and she’s grade 3!! For those who don’t know, I am currently in my 12th house in 13 years across 4 countries. If I am unable to change house because of whatever constraint, I make sure the place changes they way it looks & feels every few months, an expensive affair, eh! some would say, I say you just got to be creative and it all works out satisfactorily.

I am thinking, my best chance at changing my lifestyle, is by channeling my love for change from the tangibles to the more higher & wiser senses. Let’s see how I get creative here. The goals are set, timeline fixed, hopefully I can make it! Wish me luck!

Love

R