Letter from Home-34 (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual

26-11-18
Dear Doddamma,
Today our daughter Gayatri and children went to Bangalore, to her parents-in-laws’ place. Her husband reached Bangalore on the 23rd from Frankfurt. We both went to the airport to see them off. The house feels so empty and silent now. They were here for 18 days. We had a wonderful time together. Four of them will come on the 14th and be with us till the 28th.

Advaith gets up early and his first question when he comes down is ‘where is ajja? (grandfather). On the 18th my husband went to see his father, he came back the next morning. Advaith was very unhappy. He loves the company of his ajja. He enjoyed watering plants and plucking chickoo fruits from our tree.

20181118_162845

He also planted two saplings and watered them regularly. Kavya started walking by herself. Initially she could take only two steps. As the days went by she could walk more and more, though she would suddenly flop down. Sitting under the table was fun for her. While we ate she would invariably sit beneath the table and look at us with a smile. We got plenty of exercise walking behind her as climbed up the stairs 😊.

20181126_082944

In the first few days she always wanted her mother near her but she started coming with us. Gayatri and Aravinda went shopping and Kavya enjoyed the company of her ajja. We all had a lovely time. My mother enjoyed the company of her great grandchildren. They too had a fun time.

20181125_153754
One evening we went to my husband’s cousin’s home. They have a bilimbi tree. We call it ‘beempuli’ in Kannada. The fruits are very sour. We use them instead of tamarind. I have made pickles with them. Advaith loved the taste. Kavya wants to taste all that we taste. She too loved it and Gayatri let her suck the fruit.

21st (8)

20181124_164916

On the 21st evening Aravinda and Kuvara (my husband) went to see a play called ‘Birugaali’, a transformed version The Tempest by Kuvempu. Plays by Shakespeare are always popular. Gayatri made pasta one afternoon, I have not made it till now. We liked it. She also prepared pudina rice and another day tomato rice. They are easy to make. Evenings we went to Endpoint. Amma and I used to sit on the bench by the side of the football ground. Amma finds it tiring to walk till the end. Last month she had to undergo radiation therapy. My brother will come on the 7th to take her back. Her doctor has said she should come for a check-up. I told my brother she should come and enjoy the company of the children. Health problems aside, we were happy to see a rainbow that evening. Rainbows always bring a smile of joy.

22nd (53)
On the 24th Advaith, Gayatri and my husband had a busy time making a kite. But there was no time to bring the thread to fly it. That will be when they come next.

24th (5)

On Sunday morning I prepared puri bhaji for breakfast. I was frying puris after a long time. We all enjoyed them. Advaith enjoyed them with jaggery syrup. I make the syrup at home. It is very tasty with dosas and idlis. That morning, an old friend visited us. We enjoyed his company.
We are waiting for our grandchildren to come again. I could write lots more about the activites and it would fill pages. So, I will stop here. I will send some videos. My mobile was filled with photos, yesterday I transferred them to my laptop. Of course, memories will always be in our hearts.
With lots of love,
Lakshmi

Manilkara zapota – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manilkara_zapota

Averrhoa bilimbi – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Averrhoa_bilimbi
Averrhoa bilimbi (commonly known as bilimbi, cucumber tree, or tree sorrel) is a fruit-bearing tree of the genus Averrhoa, family Oxalidaceae. It is a close relative of the carambola tree.

Kuvempu, Kannada Theatre Personality
http://www.indianetzone.com › … › Theatre Personalities of Karnataka

Puri bhaji – Wikipedia
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puri_Bhaji

[‘Slice of Life’ has reaffirmed my belief that everyday moments are precious moments. They make us what we are. I have been posting my letters to my father’s elder brother’s wife, I call her Doddamma. It literally means elder mother. I mailed my letters to my cousin’s wife. She used to read it to her. One day she told me that doddamma enjoyed hand-written letters. She reads and re-reads them. So, I have once again started writing letters on paper and posting them to her. I edit and share what I have written to her in ‘Slice of life’. I like reading the different slices of life. We live in different places of the world but there is a sameness in our everyday lives. It is fascinating and that sameness connects us.’]

Letter from Home-32 (Slice of Life)

Letter from home -33 (Slice of Life,)

slice-of-life_individual

20-11-19
Dear doddamma,
We are having a busy and fun filled time with our grand children. Out grandson is Advaith, he is five. Our granddaughter, Kavya, is one. I was telling my friend it is as if there is no time to breathe too.  Kavya, took a few days to get used to us. She wanted her mother to be in front of her at all times. But now it is not so. She is happy to be with us. She has started walking a few steps. We all get so excited when we see her getting up without any support and take a few steps forward. It is interesting that as we grow older we find it difficult to get up without support.

20181117_185517

We take so many things for granted. A few months ago I realised this when my elder brother asked me if I could get up without taking support. Initially, I could not do so. But now I can and feel it is such an achievement. Back to childhood !!  I am taking a lot of photos and videos. My mother is enjoying the children. Advaith loves to tease her and both enjoy removing our sticker bindis.

20181119_185626

Last week was also special because my cousins came to stay for a day with us. They came to attend a wedding. I send them photos and videos of the grand children. On the 13th my doddamma and doddappa’s son and daughter-in-law stayed the night. On the 15th, their daughter and son-in-law stayed the night with us. We had a great time together and they enjoyed the company of the children. We are all grandparents now 😊.

20181117_123831
On the 17th evening we all went to the beach. Amma and I sat on one of the concrete benches near the beach. Others went to near the water.  Advaith played a lot and Kavya enjoyed the feel of the waves on her feet.

img-20181117-wa0042
Yesterday morning my husband went to be with his father. He left early in the morning.  Advaith  missed him and was happy to see his grandfather today morning.

20181118_172534

Aravinda’s German certificate course is over. Evening we all will go for a walk. Otherwise, he was busy every evening.
We are all fine here. It is now 3 in the afternoon. Kavya has just got up from her afternoon nap. I will make a does for her. Later we will get some fruits.
With lots of love,
Lakshmi

Letter from home -33 (Slice of Life,)

Letter from Home-32 (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual

12-11-18
Dear Doddamma,
We all are having a wonderful time with Advaith and Kavya. Gayatri and children reached Mangalore airport at 5 Pm on the 8th. We went by taxi to the airport to receive them. It becomes dark by 6.30 and it is difficult to drive then. Kavya started crying when she saw us, she is not used to seeing so many new faces. Advaith was feeling a little shy. We reached home by 7.15. It was the last day of Deepawali and we had got some simple sparklers to light. But we were all feeling tired. Tulsi puja is on the 20th, we will light them on that evening.
On the 10th was Kavya’s first birthday. We had decided to go to Madhur Ganapati temple and from there to Maikuri, where my father-in-law lives. He was waiting to see her. We left at 7 in the morning, reached the temple at 9.30. My husband has been going to this temple from his childhood and it is a very special place for him. Now renovation of the temple is going on. The work may go on for a year.

From there we went to Maikuri. Mava was happy to see the children. He wanted to swing Kavya on his feet, he went and sat on the table. We were wondering what he was doing. Kavya refused to go to him. Advaith wanted to go to the areca and cocoa garden. Gayatri had told him that chocolate was made from cocoa. My husband and his brother took him and he was excited to see coconut trees, areca trees and black pepper creepers and banana trees.

All this was very new for him. In Germany all children of his kindergarten are taken to the forest every month to see the trees, birds and foot prints of animals.

IMG-20181110-WA0039

After some time Kavya took hold of her great grandfather’s fingers and was playing with them. My father-in-law was feeling happy. We left after lunch and returned home before dark.

We are having a very busy time with the children and enjoying every minute. Kuvara and Advaith water the plants every morning. Advaith planted a tulsi sapling in the ‘tulasi katte’. In most of our homes we have a tulasi plant in front of the house. This letter is much shorter than my earlier letters. I am sending this with my cousin and his wife ( my doddamma’s son) who have come this side from Mumbai to attend a wedding.
With lots of love,
Lakshmi

Tulasi Puja on Uthwana Dwadashi in Karnataka – HinduPad
https://hindupad.com/tulasi-habba-tulasi-puja-on-uthwana-dwadashi…

Tulasi Pooje – Tulasi Katte | Namma Bhoomi
http://www.nammabhoomi.com › All

Pooje to be done in the evening. What’s Tulasi? In most Hindu homes, you find a Tulasi plant growing out of a Tulasi katte . Tulasi is considered to be a holy plant and is worshiped every morning.

[‘Slice of Life’ has reaffirmed my belief that everyday moments are precious moments. They make us what we are. I have been posting my letters to my father’s elder brother’s wife, I call her Doddamma. It literally means elder mother. I mailed my letters to my cousin’s wife. She used to read it to her. One day she told me that doddamma enjoyed hand-written letters. She reads and re-reads them. So, I have once again started writing letters on paper and posting them to her. I edit and share what I have written to her in ‘Slice of life’. I like reading the different slices of life. We live in different places of the world but there is a sameness in our everyday lives. It is fascinating and that sameness connects us.’]

Letter from Home-32 (Slice of Life)

Letter from Home-31 (Slice of Life)

slice-of-life_individual
6-11-18
Dear Doddamma,
We wish you all a very happy Deepawali and seek your blessings.

20181106_193403

We are all fine here and waiting for day after tomorrow. Gayatri, our daughter and grandchildren are coming from Germany. They will be reaching Bangalore today midnight. Her father-in-law will go to the airport.
Sunday morning Kuvara went to Maikuri (where my father-in-law lives. It is in a small village) He attended a 60th birthday function of his cousin. Many celebrate their 60th birthday with some rites and rituals. His another cousin’s wife had passed away on the 24th. She had been bed-ridden for many months. We perform certain rites and rituals on the 10th, 11th and 12th days. All the family members gather. Kuvara and his brother attended both the functions. He returned in the evening.

20181029_104808

Today I made chocolate spread for Advaith, he loves it. I searched for a recipe in the internet. In that recipe we have to use hazelnuts, I used almonds. It has come out well and of course, we all will be eating it too 😊.

20181104_123830

In the evening Aravinda and I went for a walk near home. Our place is mostly a residential are and there are many roads and byroads. We came back before Kuvara returned.
Kuvara (my husband) is going to the Yoga department of the hospital to learn some asanas and pranayamas. He started going from the 2nd. He has to be there by 7 Am and is back by 8.30. He has started using his bike again. We bought it in 1986 and recently we updated the required papers and official documents.
On the 1st Aravinda had a holiday for Karnataka Rajyotsava. He had a lot to study. Evening my husband’s cousin’s son, Sham and his wife came home. They live in London. In 2014 Aravinda had been to London to present a paper at an international conference. After the conference Sham had taken our son around London for two days. They had a good time together. We enjoyed their visit. They stayed the night in their cousin’s home in our town. Last week my neighbour gave us colacasia leaves from their garden. We make different dishes from the leaves and the stalks too. But it is very important to add tamarind while cooking Otherwise get a lot of itching when we eat what we have prepared.
Doddamma, last year on the 7th, I left for Germany. One year has gone by.

img-20181106-wa0035

( in the airport in Frankfurt)

Kavya has started taking a few steps by herself. Tomorrow we will buy some crackers, mainly sparklers for Advaith (our grandson, he is 5 ½.). I am making mango icecream. This year we got many mangoes from our tree, Bennet Alfonso variety. I had frozen the pulp. Advaith likes ice-cream. His grandmother, our son-in-law’s mother, in Bangalore has prepared Gulab jamun for him. She asked what she should make for him, he said he wanted gulab jamun 😊.
We will try to make Whatsapp video call and talk to you when the children are here.
With love,
Lakshmi
[‘Slice of Life’ has reaffirmed my belief that everyday moments are precious moments. They make us what we are. I have been posting my letters to my father’s elder brother’s wife, I call her Doddamma. It literally means elder mother. I mailed my letters to my cousin’s wife. She used to read it to her. One day she told me that doddamma enjoyed hand-written letters. She reads and re-reads them. So, I have once again started writing letters on paper and posting them to her. I edit and share what I have written to her in ‘Slice of life’. I like reading the different slices of life. We live in different places of the world but there is a sameness in our everyday lives. It is fascinating and that sameness connects us.’]

Colocasia – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colocasia
Karnataka Rajyotsava – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karnataka_Rajyotsava

gulab jamun recipe with mtr gulab jamun mix | instant gulab …

vegetarianindianrecipes.com/gulab-jamun-recipe-mtr-gulab-jamun-mix
gulab jamun recipe with mtr gulab jamun mix | instant gulab jamun recipe – a popular Indian dessert gulab jamun is a very popular Indian sweet recipe.

Letter from Home-31 (Slice of Life)

In their own world

Little Things
“Little drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Make the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land.
Thus the little minutes,
Humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages
Of eternity.”
By Julia Carney

20181105_180614

We take a walk almost every evening. Fortunately, we live in a place where there is no pollution and there are many trees around us. Fresh air, breeze from the sea in the distance, the setting sun and the birds returning home after a busy day add beauty to our walk. Along with these things it is fascinating to look at people: each different from the other, and yet there is a sameness too.
Continuing our walk, we go past people who are there to take their evening exercise; but they also enjoy exchanging news with their friends. We hear snippets of conversation which leave me wondering about their lives. Two persons are in their own world expressing their grievances against someone, and about the world in general. Politics is a favourite topic for many. Each one has an opinion about the governance of the country. It is amusing to hear their opinions about politicians. In general these people think politicians are worthless persons.

20181102_180757
Once I saw a person walking at break-neck speed, head bent. He was looking neither to the left nor to the right. Does he ever notice the sky, the birds, the trees or the little wild flowers? Walking is a good exercise no doubt but noticing the world around would be good for the mind too. I wonder if he takes these for granted as they are always there. But each day is different, each sunset unique and beautiful in its own way. Looking at the person mentioned above, I thought of people who plug their ears and listen to music. They are in their own world. I am baffled by this. There is so much music in nature that is shut out. Every morning we can hear birds calling out to each other. These are joyous sounds, telling us about life around us. Why would anyone not want to hear them?

cropped-end-point-2nd-1.jpg
One evening while driving back home, we were fortunately not absorbed in our own world. It was twilight. We were nearing home when my husband suddenly stopped the car. We saw a python slowly crossing the road. It was in its own world, unaware of how close it had been to being crushed under the wheels of our car.

20181024_184356

As people grow older, the world inside becomes more real than the one outside. Although our health is in our own hands, luck plays a major role in our remaining mentally and physically healthy till the end. On a dark note, I remember my father in the last months of his life. He lay in bed and hardly talked. He had withdrawn into his own mind. He could not communicate with us because speech had abandoned him. But my mother kept talking, hoping that she could reach him. Sometimes she did, and that made her very happy. It is our wont to take things for granted in life. We understand their value only when we lose them.

20181105_065545