Friday, May 29, 2009

Digital Lives

One life; many others within,
Home life, student life, love life;
Social life, married life, personal life.
A new life added to them all;
Digital life, maketh a modern human!
From the "primitive" non user of computer,
The transition to the "digital being" is always pretty fast.
Starting from the simple "Windows", one may shift to the simple
"Ubuntu" or, may "go up" in the heirarchy of the operating systems!
Essential are the web browsers! Everyone learns browsing fast.
First to gather knowledge and then.....
Begins aimlessly to wander in the "digital wilderness" of
Gmail, orkut, shtyle,facebook,music download sites;
Gaming sites, youtube, and all other possible sites.
To "talk" to the classmate sitting beside, one uses "gmail chat";
Without knowing the happenings around one.
Living almost 9hrs of digital life in front of the computer,
One returns home, dizzy and lost in the "digital day".
Nobody smells sweet fresh air; never sees the smiling flower;
Never minds whether the sun is up or down;
Nothing pierces the brain.
All are lost in their a own digital lives, online in the digital world;
But offline in the real world!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Old age homes and two trips to Navajeevan

Yesterday I happened to read an article on old age homes in a women's magazine. That article reminded me of my visits to an old age home and Navajeevan, when I was in BSc. Sr.Teresilin, who taught us English poetry in first BSc, was in charge of the "women cell" and "human rights cell". We all joined it (we may say most of the students joined it was for internal marks at first, and our college was the first one in our uty, (i think even in Kerala) to have open NSS, and membership in any of the activity clubs counted as open NSS activity). Obviously as members we were required to make field trips, my first one was to "Navajeevan".
Now let me tell you about Navajeevan. Sr.Teresilin, was the one to give us a touching account about this place at first. In plane words, it is a rehabilitation centre for mentally ill people; run by a humble man called P U Thomas, who is a peon in GOVT medical college Kottayam. I was dreading the first trip, after hearing that its a place for people of this kind. ( Now I regret having thought like that.) We had to collect cloths for the inmates and after all preparations we went there one afternoon. There were entertainment programs by the students and one of the inmates actually sang a song! It was really good. Then Thomas chettan took us all to the chapel and prayed there and told us many stories about the different people who come to medical college. It was the first experience of that kind; to stay very long in my mind.
That year, by the end of third term , Sister took us to an old age home nearby. The marks it left was no better than the previous one. We talked with the "appuppanmar" and "ammummamar" there. One granny was blind and asked us if she will see again. We consoled her; what else could we do? One was still hoping for her son to come and take her home. One granny had turned so morose that she was reluctant to talk. Grandpaas seemed to be braver than the grannies, but the truth is, they all were as sad as the old women there. I remember my grandmother here. She was with us till her death. She died at eighty and was healthy and of very strong will power. It was with her that I would spent the whole day when I was at home and my parents were awya in their office. There were times when I would feel angry to her and disagree with her, but only after her death did I realise that I love her very much. She would call me "kochupenne" for I was the youngest of her granddaughters. God bless my parents, for they looked after her with all the care they could give (though sometimes she would complain abt the 'lovelessnes' of her son! :) ). She was a queen compared to the old people I saw there. Lucky are the people who die before they see bad times. They had toiled hard in the past to bring up their children, but when the roads are trodden they are forgotten and left alone in the wilderness. Its estimated that there are over 20000 people in old age homes in Kerala and each district has an averg of 35 old age homes (Courtsey: Grihalakshmi, May 2009 edition). And the people living there are not happy at all.
My second visit to Navajeevan was in my BSc second year, this time, my best friend and my dear friends of Jyothi hostel were with me. This time I didn't feel any apprehension. More buildings were being built there. This time we actually interacted with the inmates and we saw the kitchen, mess and the wards. Violent people were in cells and almost cured people in rooms and they were free to move anywhere in the campus. (When I say rooms, they are not delux rooms, but simple rooms with cots , table and chairs and a cross in all of them.) One woman saw the red threaded necklace (it was in a set, a necklace, with matching earrings, not gold of course) I was wearing and asked me whether I would give it to her. I gave her the thing but I was fond of the locket which is a detachable one and gave the red string to her. When I told my mom abt this, she told me that I should have given the locket also. Yes I should have. I feel bad abt it now. That locket is still with me and I don't use it. :( God forgive me. :( Then we went to see the cells. Like caged beings, there were men and women, in separate cells. In one of the cells was Jayanthi. When we shook hands with her through the railed door, she kept holding it and looking at us in hope. I don't have words for the feeling I had then. As usual, we went to the chapel there and prayed along with Thomas chettan. Back in Jyothi, my best friend told me that she had apprehensions (just like I had the previous time), but then her mind was clear and pure.

I can't finish this without telling about P U Thomas. As I had mentioned earlier, he was a peon in medical college, but he helps needy people. He brings the poor hungry people coming to the hospital, lunch packets. Helping every needy one can't be gauranteed, but still..... GOVT extended his service for one more year and this was in newspapers. I don't know what happened to him from then on, for this was news in 2006. Though, these days I'm living in a place near to MC, I can't go there. I wish to visit, Navjeevan once more, but..... He gets help from people who are willing to help, that's how the institution runs.

PS: Somebody asked me one day, where my God comes. I can't help everybody with everything, but still atleast a small part of a large help can be offered by me. And, I can pray for all these beings, and that prayer will make be capable of doing many things. :) This may not be the correct answer, but still..... :)

PPS: When you become great or famous, don't forget your parents, for they would have suffered many many hardships, they have never disclosed to you, for your well being. Remember the "Jataka tale" of the father, his son n his son. :)

Friday, May 22, 2009

"Aavu" and "Puppaya"

Clicked? No of course! :) And the a person seeing this is not likely to understand anything at first. :) These are two words I'm rather fond of, the first one being the inevitable part of my life. Both are related to my childhood and I don't know how they came into use, though of course I'm sure that I am the person who had coined them out. :) A person outside my family will definitely think of these are gibberish, unless told about their significance. So, here's is the story of aavu and puppaya.


Definition: A peach/brown coloured powder, used as chatni to eat dosa/idalli. It is known as "dosappodi" among the public (of South India of course). :) Ingredients are chilli, black gram, daal, salt and "kaayappodi" (I'll refer and write the English name later). It can be used a reserve curry when you don't have any other curry to eat dosa (especially when ur mom is not at home or she is ill). At home, it will be served into ur plate using a spoon , and usually will be a like a small hill! U r supposed to make a hole in the middile of the heap into which u can pour oil! It is a great pleasure to watch this careful process and finally when it comes to mixing, u feel a bit sad! But there are many things which can be done after mixing, of course, the main thing is to use it for eating the dosa. :)If the 'paste' is too thick u may or maynot add further oil. If u don't, u can make "puppaya balls" :P. If the oil is too much for the powder, it will form a thin film on the plate, and u can actually draw or write something! I usually did so when I was a child, though my granny used to scold me for 'writing' in the left overs! The major breakthrough in the usage of the name came when my father started (or rather I heard him) using it almost 3 years ago; for the word had been in existence for the past 18/17 years. I was actually surprised to hear it. But the name "puppaya" has become a well used one in our home. In fact it has become a 'curry name' like sambar, achar etc. :) So, if you like this name, you may actually use it. :)
That's all for puppaya. Now abt my all time favourite "aavu".


Definition: A pillow which I hug when I sleep; in otherwords it is something without which I can't sleep in a bed (for we all sleep in buses, on tables and so on). :)
I don't remember how I got the habit of using aavu. But I do remember my parents keeping a pillow near me, to prevent me from falling from the bed. :) Soft pillows, with sweet covers make the best aavus. I have had many aavus, through the years and I think I've become an aavu expert. :)
So a good aavu is:
(1) one which is not too large
(2) soft and
(3) having a pillow cover which is of a nice colour, my fav being light blue) and not too serious; eg) one with a tale pictured on it, or flower print (but if it is made by ur mother, from a cross stich cloth and she has stiched a rabbit and a duck on it for you,it will be more lovely ;) ) .
Now, to use your aavu, just mount on ur bed, lie down, hug it and cover yourself with the blanket and sleep peacefully. Ho! I can experience the feeling it gives you even now. :) It is such a nice one.
Aavu is a good companion. It is your friend. You pamper it like your own sibling,pet etc (as you grow up it becomes your child :) ), you cry over it when you are sad, and hug it tightly when you are happy, or a frightening lightning flash occurs or when you think you are in love ;). It is your companion when you are ill ; it knows your heart, and gives you a sense of security. And the feeling that you are not alone. :)

PS: I took my aavu with me (it can be kept in n airbag; both small sized and flexible :) )
when we went for the tour in MSc. Yes! That proved an advantage of aavu. It acted as a reserve pillow in the room where five of us stayed. We lay horizontally on the two cots there, and with the 2 pillows in that room+my aavu, we all slept well. :)
While in the bus, one of my classmates asked me; "Have you given aavu anything to eat?" :)

My dear aavu, I love you. :)
You are so cute and sweet. :)
I love you. :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


This is story of an IS and IS, about how they became IS n IS, and nobody knows what the present is, and future will be. :) Somebody told me that I should write this story and the philosophical interpretation of IS (though I doubt there is one)!

Now my story starts on a day in the month of the May and continues....

There were two people who had never known of either's existence before they met. One day they met, and that too in a strange way, when the female IS, was worried abt her room mate who had promised to turn up on a particular date. She, being new in the place felt all alone and sad, for her friend hadn't appeared on the promised date. She went all alone to the mess, listening to the radio over her headset, and started eating her dinner.
Well, she met the officemate of her friend and asked whether she had come back. (That's part of another story...) The OM didn't seem to hear and she repeated the ques in Hindi, which definitely caught his attention (we may say he was wonderstruck)! With this OM was our male IS (of whom our female IS had not taken notice of; or atleast misunderstood as somebody else). Well... this OM commented abt the Hindi and our hero asked her "how many languages do you know?"; she replied 4 and he called her dangerous! :)

One day (rather night) she met him in our OM's and roommate's office, when her friend had atlast returned and all were sitting peacefully after a long day's (!!!!!) tiring work! All of a sudden, the original office people decided to "pair" the two outsiders. Our male IS, was talking abt some lonesome, rich, insecure girl (though the original words used by him is censored here), and OM found a lonesome, insecure girl in our heroine and decided to "marry" them off! Well the "wedding date" was fixed, based on some wierd calculations involving birthdays and ages and so on ;but for the time being, they were declared a pair. Then our 'friend' took photos (for our hero wanted only to work with female photographers) and OM suggested a family photograph; but the newly wed were very decent that they sat in their respective chairs and gave a photograph.

OM suggested taking our heroine to the terrace , but our hero was again extra decent. :) But what to call? That was a problem. So our 'smart, intelligent,beautiful' young lady (the heroine) found out a solution.

"What would you call your fiancee?",she thought.
"Would be".
'Would be'----> future.
SO; present of 'Would be' = IS.
This is how the usage 'IS' was coined.

"IS is my IS!"; exclaimed OM and approved it.

And they continued and continue to be IS and IS (only "officially") till today. What will happen from this point of time is unknown; but lets hope they always continue to be "IS" & "IS" at heart in every respect.


That's all for the story, but I actually don't know how to express the philosophical meaning of IS. The person who gave the suggestion to write this story may interpret and express it. :)

PS: "IS" misses "IS"
For "IS's" smile lits up "IS's" heart,
And "IS" is so cute that "IS" can't help admiring IS!
"IS" is "IS's" good friend.
"IS" is "IS's" "IS"!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Some thoughts over the landphone....

Its been a long time,
Since I had talked over it,
To my dear friends,
Who were a "local call" away.

Coming from school,
I would dial a number,
The number of my classmate,
Who sat next to me,
With whom I would spend,
Six hours at school!
Enough was the time to have,
Exchanged news,
But still, the lanphone;
It would mesmerise me.

Many a talks exchanged
Over the phone,
I don't even remember them all.
It was the same when I was
In high school & higher secondary.
But the friends were different.

Call I would, my dearest "Kushan",
"Champika's" praano,
In our class room Ramayana,
Formed in 9th!
I would phone her, or,
She would call me and ask in mock voice,
Whether it was the right number.

Gossips, news and every bit of information,
Though trifles would be exchanged.
And the curly chord of that phone,
Would be stretched,compressed,
Curled and unwound;
Brothers or sisters of friends,
Would mark their presence,
By simply pressing,
The tone mode button, or,
The number buttons (if already in tone mode).
Always the position and other doings,
Of the "other one" would be told.
And a picture of what it would be like,
Would spring into the mind...

Another call would cut across,
Our talks sometimes.
"What these girls have got to talk!"
The granny on the 'cuttin' line would wonder..
And the menu for the lunch could be heard...
How many of our talks would have been listened!

Long time it has been,
Since I've used it the way in the past.
Now the landline serves as a "netone" for me.
For "cellone" has taken all the glory,
With no contacts for old friends,
And "sms" and "miss calls" for,
"Contactable" ones.

But still landphone is a boon,
For the sweet memories it bear...
It connects people with a simple key board
And reciever+mouthpiece set...
Doesn't "cast off" call as,
"Attendable" and "non attendable".
(For the basic form doesn't display numbers.)
And no room for "very big secrets",
To be guarded off from others
Around you.
(For mobile give the facility of moving
Away from others when u need secrecy! :))
(Oh come on! Landphone has to be picked up,
To know the identity of the caller.
But mobile dicsplays it!)
Its something common to all in the family... :)

My dear landphone,
All I've to tell u is that,
I miss you and my friends,
With whom I used to talk over u... :)

Friday, May 15, 2009

On the lonely road...

She was walking through that deserted road. It was nearly dusk. No movement, no sound could be heard. She walked peacefully, listening to the peaceful silence which pervaded the place. On both sides of the road were 'forests', with a beautiful 'poovaka', bamboos and a dry pond. Lost in the beauty and silence, she continued to walk but only slowly.
She wished he too was with her. Its been a long time since she had met him. What had happened between them? She remembered the half said bye they had bid. The times they had spent together, began to unfold like a movie in her mind... Their first meeting;first talk, trying to understand each other's tastes; first quarrel, reconciliation... "He loves me", she thought. "But I can't be sure about that. What if he loves somebody else and not me?". She tried to figure out the possibilities; she couldn't arrive at a conclusion!:)" What a stupid idea! Why the hell do I think about love all these days?";she felt angry.She tried to turn her attention towards the dry pond.
"This atmosphere is so lovely and beautiful that I can't resist it."; she continued walking,now up hill, now panting a bit. The bamboos and the pond were long passed. She was now climbing the steep climb in front of the men's hostel. A goat bleated out from somewhere in the 'forest'. She wanted to imitate the bleating, but held it back. At last panting heavily she reached the top of the "hill" to turn left and go to the girls' hostel.
Walking swiftly, she entered the hostel compound, pressed the 'toy bird calling bell' hanging at the entrance and got in. Climbing the stairs she reached her door, opened it, threw her things on to the bed and ran off for the programmes of the evening.

Somewhere back on the lonely road, her thoughts wandered off with the silent wind which had lifted off the 'poovaka' flowers from their home tree...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009













She sits in the cabin outside the library.

She puts seals on the newly arrived journals.

She helps newcomers with their queires.

She collects the books returned to library.

She enters the libray to put used books in order.

She reshelves those books carefully on racks.

She hurries through the library when it is time to close.

And I who go there to study simply watches her;

Only to admire her and to think of her.

Oh Raina! You are so sweet and cute;

And gentle like a breeze,

That I always keep admiring you....

May God bless you.........

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Instrument Box

That rectangular orange box;
With additions of yellow n black design on top,
I've long forgotten it,
And have almost ceased to use.
The lovely compass and divider,
Two set squares arranged one on top of other,
Large one at bottom and small on top,
And one wonderful instrument called protractor;
Better known as potractor :)
And a scale I had lost long ago.
An empty place where the cutter was,
And a rarely used white rubber!
A blue pen with empty refill,
And a lancet ment for biology lab.
ANd two coins of 25 paise.
Oh Instrument box
After all those years of silent admiration,
Now I can't help saying,
How lovely you are!
Two boxes I always took to school,
My 'pink' box and you.
Then where did I leave you behind?
On my way from simple geometries to complex calculus?
What remains of the years, is you.
And some memories.

I don't know why......

The 'Tulasi' flowers he made immortal;
I keep them on my desktop,
In my pendrive and in my mobile.
Just 'coz of their beauty?
I don't know why.....
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The 'boy' who sat to my left;
In the 'almost deserted' ,
Afternoon service bus,
Betraying 'Hund's rule';
I remember him,
While sitting on a seat for two,
I don't know why.......
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The 'boy' who takes an afternoon nap,
Leaning with his back on that swivel chair,
With hands folded perfectly and;
With his foot over the study table,
Those 'shabby sports shoe'd feet crossed;
I watch him sleeping peacefully;
In his yellow checkered shirt,
And gray jeans,
With child like innocence on his face.
Then an urge to run my fingers,
Through his wavy hair;
To plant a soft kiss on his forehead,
And to pamepr him seizes me.
I wish he were my son;
I don't know why....
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
And when I think about him,
In lonely moonlit nights,
I feel hot tears trickling,
Down on my face.
I don't know why.....