Friday, January 31, 2014

Win some, lose some.
So that thing that I was jumping about, last year, received a “try again next year.”

The Tx work moves on to the next stage. Fingers crossed.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Dusk, JP Road
a banyan tree bursts out with birdcall.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

A FB friend, Dushyant, has written a book of short stories—July ki ek raat
Very slice of life. Modern tales. Abrupt endings that leave you stunned.
The story stays with you.

Easy to handle for non-Hindi natives like me.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Baba’s third death anniversary y’day. The day was peaceful. Watching the baby gurgle and turn on Thurs. has helped bring me to a place of acceptance, this cycle of life.  Yet, that memory of the airport bus, that pinging so much like a ventilator’s. Somewhere these memories reside in  your nerve endings, surge to alert life at a hint.

I am Kalam… what a brilliant movie. Must watch. And Gabricha Paus in the award winner slot at 11 PM of which I watched half an hour. DD is outdoing itself these days—for movies like these, I can sit though ten reruns of the Dove/ Sunsilk ads.

What is it with youngsters/ not so youngsters and money? You have to cut the coat according to the cloth, Baba used to say. I keep thinking of the shift from chauffeur-driven by Shankar to moped, and how cheerfully and matter of factly he made the shift. Once when the moped broke down he’d hitched a ride on a bullock cart.

Look up, see
The nagkesar are in bloom
A vine, purple decked, has made the beal its own
Reaching for sunshine

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Took the urban village shortcut to reach the auditorium in time, just as curtains went up. Eleven Gujarati women poets honored for their work; eleven volumes of poetry released. Each of the poets read out a selection. All of them paid respects to SD, the late poet-publisher. Morari Bapu briefly graced the occasion.  My highlight was a book set gifted by the poetess lady. And an opportunity to escort an aging diva (known for her traditional stories at a time when women didn’t write),  now well into her eighties, stick in hand and all, to her car. I stood up for my craft—how good are you? Very. Says who? IL, MR etc etc. The first time ever I’ve been as presumptuous. The silence from H* is getting to me.

Friday, January 17, 2014

His mother is a friend I’ve made completely by chance, introduced by a trip acquaintance. Being phone friends for two years means this was my first trip to her home, easy to locate and not too far, despite a longish address. After months and months of obsessing over possible names, finally a name was given to her infant son, one for the horoscope, one for daily use. Beautiful names both. Sober and happy ceremony, with sunshine flooding in, incense and diyas, the chant of mantras. Quite  like the practice of invoking the Gods and calling upon the forefathers to witness and bless. Wonderful start.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Not a crease on her face. Her voice that of a young girl, the lilt, the enthusiasm, that joy for life…and with a shock you remind yourself of her age-- eighty summers done and some. Her poems are finely etched, like calligraphy or Japanese line art, but so optimistic ever so optimistic; and you think of the darkness this must have balanced out; and the chaos-turmoil she has conquered, every smile earned. Without a stray comment on her blog you’d never have met, such is chance and such is fate.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Mooralala Marwada at the Kabir Festival, at a morning recital … just brilliant. No photos—you can’t capture the madness of his music in pixels. Or words.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Too austere a diet isn’t working… well, another SL.

Watched Sonar Kella. Three fourths w/o subtitles, thanks to the loaned CD, and the rest with; thanks to YT. Amazing how simple the movie is. How select the trademark Ray shots (as in the shadows and beams at the guesthouse, the train roof). The real hero is the Killa, and I oohed over my Jaisalmer shots circa 2012 over and over again. The Patwa haveli specially--is haunting by moonlight—I had been drawn back there, had sat for hours mesmerized, uncaring of the dark and unafraid, perhaps there is a story there.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Last night and too late at 11 PM, DD National showed Gajendra Ahire’s Sumbaran (Marathi). What a gripping theme, about the return to one’s roots, loss and the life choices one makes…what excellent characterization. Could not keep awake to see the end, my loss.

After y’days death we will lose our last connection to the village, the house of the forefathers will be lost, that front room with kitchen and Dadaji’s swing, the back room where grains were stored in large earthern pots, the steep front staircase to the first floor *medi*, the large cot where I’d laid when I was so ill at 9 years old, Dadaji’s table, the staircase to the third floor and the room with the stored books and the terrace where Baba and all my uncles flew kites, fought, studied… the end of an era. I shall keep with me the memory of the iron grill on the windows and staircase. In my mind’s eye, Dadji sitting on the swing massaging his hand, speechless, a smile on his wrinkled face even as sunlight filters past the metal rods of the front door and casts patterns on worn stone…

Monday, January 06, 2014

Note to self, 1: NEVER, EVER take a ticket on the domestic leg of an international flight, specially not if its Air India. It IS possible for a 1 hour flight to be delayed by 2 hours, and to be offered a slim packet of peanuts at 10 PM. On the plus side you never know whom you’ll meet and the 75 yr young couple, doctors both, were a lesson in self care and attitude, greens and an hour of gym per day.

Note to self 2: After t'day's sorrow of a close relative’s peaceful death after a lifetime giving in to schizo not complying with medication—a good life wasted-- the lessons—self care, mental health is vital to one’s well being. Anything that increments one’s mental, physical, spiritual health is on. RIP, and be well whereever you are.

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

2014. This once I didn’t call up the relatives at midnight, didn’t change the calendars with much show… I watched National Treasure on HBO and went to sleep, stirring awake when they set off crackers… this year I resolve to be a nicer person-- nicer to myself too. Move from a largely reactive mode to a selectively proactive one, which is a tough one for me, need to undo decades of conditioning. This year professionally I pray I move from neutral/ reverse gear to a forward gear, any forward gear, so help me God….