Away from home (Photo fiction)

Suresh was walking back home after a day’s hard work. There were dark clouds in the sky and he hoped to reach home before it rained. Initially the rains here had troubled him. In his home town it did not rain like it did here. Home was the town of Badami. The lack of rains had created so many problems. There had been no rains for two years. The land was parched. They had to walk for miles to fetch water. Life had become one continuous struggle.

Some of his friends had told him that that there was plenty of work in the towns in coastal Karnataka. He did not want to go to big cities. Life was a struggle there too. He was used to open spaces.  He did not mind small towns. He and his family had left the Deccan plateau and descended the western ghats. They had found work in this town. Due to educational and employment opportunities in big cities  the local workers had moved away.

The work he did here  was different from what he was used to back home. Here there were betelnut and coconut plantations. Every morning he and the others gathered in the town centre. From there the land owner’s  agent would take them to the plantation.
Many more people  had come from his region. They all lived in the same area. It helped because it prevented them from feeling  homesick. Once in three months they went home. There was a night bus which was very convenient. While returning they carried  sacks full of provisions like jowar and ragi and other millets . These were very expensive here.

Life was different and he missed his home. But he was glad because he could send his two children to school.  He wanted them to study and lead a better life. This was his dream. He and his wife prayed daily that this dream would come true.

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My young friend, Meghana, sent this photo to me. It is of workers returning home in the evening. This is near my parents’ home where they lived till 2015. Meghana asked me to write a story. I liked this photo very much.

https://lensforlifecom.wordpress.com

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Everyday Moments- (#SOL -2019)

slice-of-life_individual

I believe that the moments in each day make our life what it is. Of course, the unexpected always happens and whatever preparations we make, Life surprises us. Many a time, we think that nothing happens in our life, but things do happen. I started writing to my Doddamma, my father’s elder brother’s wife in October 2017. She is 88 and is not able to hear properly. I post my letter to her every Tuesday. Both of us enjoy the letters. These letters have made it possible for me to appreciate the ordinary moments of life. I edit the letters and post them as Slice of Life every Tuesday.
15-04-19

For most Indians the New Year that starts on 1st January is according to the English calendar. We celebrate two new years calculated according to lunar and solar calendar. Today we celebrated Vishu and it is celebrated in many parts of our country. We usually go to the temple but this time we could not go. My husband is recovering from cough and wheezing.
I completed the stitching my sari blouse. Usually I complete the machine work and do the hemming and stitching the buttons in the evening. I am so used to stitching my clothes that something does not feel right if I get them stitched by a tailor 😊. In all these years I have got my clothes stitched just two or three times.
I am reading The Valley of flowers by Frank Smythe. It is a beautiful book. Some years ago my husband’s cousin, who is a botanist had been there. Just listening to him was fascinating. I got this book and the author gives beautiful description of the valley and the upper Himalayas. Books take us to so many different worlds, I cannot imagine life without reading.

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(photo from the internet)

The weather has become very hot. We have a breadfruit tree in or back yard. There are many breadfruits but due to the heat they are falling when they are small. We use raw ones in our curries and other vegetables. I don’t know whether people eat ripe breadfruits. We don’t.

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There is a mango tree in one corner of our back yard. It was planted long back by the previous owners. For the first time we have got some mangoes and they are tasty. From two raw ones I prepared ‘panna’ which is used to prepare juice. I was making it for the first time. I prepared the concentrate. We have to add water and prepare the juice. It is tasty and refreshing.

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We have started playing scrabble after a long time. It is a very nice game and time just flies. Both of us are not really interested in TV programmes, actually I don’t watch anything, I would rather read a book or read blogs in WordPress. My husband reads a book and in between watches whatever sport is happening at the time 😊 Our son will be teaching German certificate course till first week of May, then he will be free in the evenings.

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On the 12th afternoon we got the coconuts plucked. This person has been coming to our place for more than ten years. We have got ten coconut trees in our garden. Climbing coconut trees is a specialized job. Usually he cuts the coconuts and drops them. This time he tied the bunches with a rope and lowered them carefully. We now have to get the husks removed before selling them. We keep aside some for our daily use. Actually, for the agriculturists all this is quite an expensive procedure. They hardly get any profit. It is sad but farmers do not get the returns that they should get for all the hard work and money they put in.

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We went for our daily evening walks to our favourite places. Going out in the evenings refreshes the mind and the body. Today evening we went to our library and from there went to the park near Venugopla temple. We like walking there. I met my mother’s friend and we enjoyed talking to each other. Yesterday night I cooked boiled rice, I keep aside conjee and today night I used it to make sweet corn soup. It is tasty. A good ending to a special day. Tomorrow is a new day.

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Everyday Moments
Occasionally in life there are those moments of unutterable fulfillment which cannot be completely explained by those symbols called words. Their meanings can only be articulated by the inaudible language of the heart.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

Hindu calendar – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_calendar

Vishu Festival – Vishu 2019, Vishu Celebration, About Vishu Festival
http://www.vishufestival.org

Are There Any Health Benefits to Boiled Rice? | Healthy Eating | SF …
https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/there-health-benefits-boiled-rice…

aam panna recipe, how to make aam panna | mango panna
http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com › recipes › Beverages

Valley of Flowers National Park – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valley_of_Flowers_National_Park

Everyday Moments- (#SOL -2019)

 

 

 

 

 

Waiting

Recently I read about ‘waiting’ in two posts by my blogger friends. I have been thinking a lot about ‘waiting’. We wait for something good to happen and many wait for something bad. They are sure that life can only be unpleasant. It is a pity. But I believe people hope for the best. They wait for better days.

The general elections (elections to send representative to the parliament of the country) are underway here. We will be voting this 18th. And we will all be waiting for the results. Politicians make a lot of false promises. But they know, and we too know, that those promises will not be kept. But we have to vote. Those candidates will be waiting for the results. Winning will make a lot of difference in their lives. I am not sure whether it will make any difference to the lives of the people. It is really sad that we are forced to be cynical about these ‘leaders’ that we have to choose. But that is life.

We were in the hospital from the fifth to ninth of this month. That world is one where a lot of waiting happens. People are waiting for their loved ones to recover and others are waiting for an end to happen. It is an emotionally charged world. It makes us realise how important good health is. We have to do our best to be healthy but sometimes things are not in our hands. A young husband was telling me how his wife had tuberculosis in the brain. The young woman was healthy and the disease assailed her suddenly, so that there was no time to counter its effect. She is undergoing treatment but no one is really sure in what condition she will come out. She is in coma. I keep seeing in my mind’s eye the husband’s look of utter hopelessness. I last saw him on the 10th. He must still be waiting.

A few years ago I used to go twice a week to the children’s ward in the cancer hospital. I remember that small girl who did not survive. She was so brave and I could see that she and her mother were waiting to leave the hospital. I gifted her a necklace made of small red stones for her birthday. After that I could not visit for two weeks. Later I came to know that she had passed on. She did not have to wait any more.

There is a lady in the Home for the Mentally challenged. I go there twice a week. She is waiting for her brother to come and see her or take her home. Each time she sees me she tells me her brother is coming tomorrow. But he never does. She is a life time member and he and his wife believe she has no claim on them. It is sad to see her wait and that seems to be her destiny.

I listen to lectures by Bannanje Govindacharya on YouTube. He is great Sanskrit scholar. I enjoy listening to all that he has to say about our epics and Purnanas and so much more. He was speaking about how people wait for happiness to come to them. They believe that if they achieve their goal or if they do something they will get happiness. According to our Vedas we will get happiness only if it is within us. Our achievements give us happiness only if we have the capacity or the inherent nature to be happy.

“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.”
― Dalai Lama XIV

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2019 Indian general election – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_general_election,_2019

Bannanje Govindacharya – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bannanje_Govindacharya

More groups of people at the High School

“Learning to Wait”

The River (Sunday photo fiction)

Sunday Photo fiction
The river flowed merrily down the mountain sides. Her source was somewhere in a glacier. But for millions of devotees she had come down from the heavens with great force. Lord Shiva had caught her and released her slowly with great care down the mountain sides.

She flowed into the plains and her life changed when she came into contact with humans. They worshipped her but did not think twice before polluting her. They constructed dams to use her water. She did not mind helping others but she wished humans were not so greedy. They thought it was their right to remove sand from her bed for their uses. Did they ever think about the harm they were doing ?

She had lost her freedom once she had entered the plains. But she had not given in everywhere. Humans thought twice before trying to take advantage of her. But she was very generous too. She had allowed them to build bridges across her. People living nearby needed them. She cared about others and wished they would care about her too. Now she could only move on, there was no going back. That was her life.

(194 words)

 

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( Photo credit : C E Ayr )

The River (Sunday photo 

 

Everyday Moments (# SOL 2019)

slice-of-life_individual

(I believe that the moments in each day make our life what it is. Of course, the unexpected always happens and whatever preparations we make, Life surprises us. Many a time, we think that nothing happens in our life, but things do happen. I started writing to my Doddamma, my father’s elder brother’s wife in October 2017. She is 88 and is not able to hear properly. I post my letter to her every Tuesday. Both of us enjoy the letters. These letters have made it possible for me to appreciate the ordinary moments of life. I edit the letters and post them as Slice of Life every Tuesday.)

7-04-19

I am writing this sitting in the hospital room. Three of us have been suffering from cough and cold for more than two weeks. But on the 4th night , my husband had a tough night. He had wheezing and was coughing a lot. Both of did not sleep much that night. We were worried but somehow the night passed. The next morning we talked to our doctor and went to the hospital. A series of tests were conducted and my husband was having lung infection and the oxygen level in his blood was low. He was admitted. He was in a minor ICU of the Medicine department on the 5th night. He was given oxygen. I was sitting in the waiting area.
Hospital is a different world. So much happens and does not happen there. A young man was sitting next to me. He had a worried and hopeless look. Maybe my grey hair made him open his heart to me. A few months ago his wife, who is just 36 had tuberculosis of the brain. Everything happened suddenly. Most of the time she has been in coma. It seems she had recovered once but had relapsed. This is tragic. What will happen, God only knows. Later my husband told me that young man was allowed to come in every hour and talk to his wife but there was no response.
Another person told me about his younger brother who had taken poison. He was only 26 and had got into the habit of drinking alcohol. When his parents forbade him to do so he took poison. He has been in the intensive care for more than twenty days. It is really sad. I wonder what these people will do for money. On the 6th my husband was transferred to this room. I keep thinking about those youngsters. What does the future hold for them?
The doctors on duty come regularly and the nursing staff are caring.
My son was busy conducting exams for German course that he teaches. He came to the hospital in the evening. Today morning I prepared for his lunch before coming to the hospital. We are lucky that my husband is not having serious health issues. At night when I look out of the window I can see lights in different wards. So much suffering and people waiting for it to end. Life can be so difficult.

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9-04-19
We returned home today evening. We were happy to be back home. On the way back I posted my letter to my doddamma but I did not write all this to her. She would get worried. I just wrote to her that my husband was not well and had to be admitted and is much better now. My cousin called today morning and I asked him to tell her that we will be back home today evening.
Sudden changes in our daily life show us that we should never take life for granted.
Everyday moments

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”  ― Rumi

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( Wild jasmine growing on the hill sides )

Everyday Moments (Slice of Life)

#SoCS April 6/19 – Fabindia

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There is a wedding in the family this 28th. The younger generation plan a lot to make the function fabulous. They select the type and colour of the saris they are going to wear and the kurtas or shirts the men are going to wear. Just yesterday my son was told that the men are going to wear kurtas, a lighter shade of orange, from Fabindia.
Fabindia is an Indian chain store. Fabrics and ethnic products hand made by craftspersons and artisans are sold in these shops. These stores are found in different parts of the country and are very popular.

I have never bought anything from Fabindia because I think the dresses are quite costly. Another reason, I like to stitch my own clothes. There is something so satisfying while stitching and also when I finish the dress. I used to stitch for my son when he was small but I continued stitching for my daughter. All the frocks that I stitched gave me great joy. Recently I stitched some dresses for my grandchildren. But now it is mainly for myself. When we create something there is a feeling of satisfaction that is wonderful, a fabulous feeling.

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#SoCS April 6/19 – Fabindia

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!

 

The Cycle of Life (Sunday Photo Fiction)

Sunday Photo fiction

It was becoming hotter every day. The heat of the sun was too much to bear. The land looked so parched. It was as if the rains had never happened. Last year the rains had started in June but had stopped suddenly after three months instead of continuing till November. There was no greenery in most places. The grass was looking sad and brown. It used to be so green and beautiful. This place was so special.
These thoughts filled Sooraj’s mind as he looked at all the benches at their meeting place. He and his friends always met there in those childhood days when life was free from troubles and responsibilities. They all had had so many dreams. He thought about his life. There had been so many ups and downs. He had always managed to overcome the obstacles that had come his way. He could not explain why, but memories of this place had given him strength. He believed that certain places and people could do that. Today the place looked dry and deserted but he knew there would soon be new life and the place would become green, filled with beautiful wild flowers.
(200 words)

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( Photo credit : Susan Spaulding )

The Cycle of Life (Sunday Photo Fiction)

 

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Everyday Moments (#SOL-2019)

slice-of-life_individual

I believe that the moments in each day make our life what it is. Of course, the unexpected always happens and whatever preparations we make, Life surprises us. Many a time, we think that nothing happens in our life, but things do happen. I started writing to my Doddamma, my father’s elder brother’s wife in October 2017. She is 88 and is not able to hear properly. I post my letter to her every Tuesday. Both of us enjoy the letters. These letters have made it possible for me to appreciate the ordinary moments of life. I edit the letters and post them as Slice of Life every Tuesday.

2-4-19

For the last three day we have been coughing and coughing. It is tiring. The weather is very hot too. I had made ‘kashaya’. We add turmeric, actually the root is powdered, pepper and ginger to water and boil it well. Drinking this gives relief.

On the 30th evening, my husband’s cousin and his wife came home. They are settled in Udaipur in Rajasthan. Both were professors in the University there. Even after retirement they decided to continue living there. That is their home. But they come this side once a year to visit their relatives. Many years ago we had been to their place and gone around places. Rajasthan is a beautiful state.

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( A Jain temple in Ranakpur, Rajasthan, we were there in 2008)

That evening at seven we attended a Carnatic classical music concert. T M Krishna was the singer. It was an evening to remember. The concert was held in an open air amphitheatre. We were in a different world.

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Last week I finished stitching a salwar kameez for myself. I love stitching and attended classes when in college. I stich my clothes myself. I have to stitch two sari blouses. Last week I went to Asare, the home for the mentally challenged two afternoons. I like spending time there.

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I made two types of raw mango chutney. One, hot and spicy and the other, sweet and spicy. They are good to eat with dosas. I usually make different types of dosas for breakfast.

On the 27th my husband went to our village to be with his father and  brother. He returned on the 28th evening. My father-in-law is fine. He is doing his own work. He keeps saying he wants to out but is not able to say where and he also feels very tired when we take him somewhere.

That evening our son, Aravinda attended a Hindi play. It was a translation of ‘Waiting for Godot’ by Samuel Beckett. I walked back home. My husband and I don’t enjoy theatre.

Last week was a little tiring. Good health is so important, without it, we are not able to do so many things. Sunday evening we went to the park opposite the temple in our place. We just sat and enjoyed the breeze. We returned home feeling refreshed.

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Everyday Moments

“Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.”      –  Omar Khayyam

kashaya recipe | kashayam recipe – Hebbar’s Kitchen
https://hebbarskitchen.com › kashaya-rec…

Udaipur – Wikipedia
https://en.m.wikipedia.org › wiki › Udaip…

T. M. Krishna – Wikipedia
https://en.m.wikipedia.org › wiki › T._M…

Dosa – Wikipedia
https://en.m.wikipedia.org › wiki › Dosa

Ranakpur – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranakpur

Everyday Moments (#SOL-2019)

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( a wild flower)