#SoCS June 15/19

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Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “social.” Use it any way you’d like. Have fun!

The word social brought to mind some relatives and friends. Some are very social and others not so social. It depends on our inherent nature. We tread the middle path 😊. A young relative of mine has minimal contact with his relatives. By minimal I mean bare minimal. He was a baby when I stayed with his parents while going to college. So, I have a soft corner for him. I write an e mail with photos to him three or four times a year. I don’t expect him to respond and if he does, I feel happy.

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My father’s father loved to be in contact with his relatives and friends. He was the Headmaster in the Municipal Highschool in a town far from his home town. Every vacation he used to come to his home town and visit all his relatives. Some were just flying visits 😊. He loved writing post cards and kept in touch with everyone.

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Another very social person is my father-in-law. He is now 94. Till about four years ago he used to visit his relatives. He also used to love writing letters to his near and dear ones. They treasured his letters, they got so much news about what was happening in their village and to other relatives. My father-in-law has been an agriculturist all his life. He used to make time and visit his relatives and many were flying visits. He is loved and respected by everyone.

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Last week we had been to Madikeri to my father’s maternal uncle’s home. His family live there. They are a very social family. In fact theirs is an open house. Everyone is welcomed and that home and its members radiate affection.
There are all sorts of people. And we have just accept them as they are.

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#SoCS June 8/19

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Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “open book, point, write.” Pick up the closest book to you when you sit down to write your post. Close your eyes, open the book, and place your finger on the page. Whatever word or phrase your finger lands on, write about it. Enjoy!

Yesterday I was reading My Dear Aunt Flora by Elizabeth Cadell. I closed my eyes and placed my finger on the page. I was surprised to find that I had placed my finger on the word visits because we are visiting our relatives tomorrow.

We are going to a small hill station called Madikeri in the Western Ghats. It will take us about four and half hours to reach the place. My father’s maternal uncle’s family live there in a very old and beautiful house. My father was born in a house adjacent to this house in 1931. His mother’s parents lived there. My grandmother passed away when my father was only twelve. But my grandfather did not lose contact with her parents and other relatives. My father, his elder brother and two elder sisters visited their grandparents’ home during vacations.

We too used to visit during summer vacations. We lived in different parts of the country as my father was working in Indian Railways. But every summer vacation of two months was spent with our maternal grandparents. We used to visit many of our relatives and a visit to Madikeri was a must. My father’s maternal uncle had two children, a son and a daughter. Unfortunately, his son passed away when he was not even twenty. Then a daughter was born. She is my father’s cousin but just one year older to me. We have always been good friends, during childhood and even now. We went to Madikeri two years ago. WhatsApp has helped us to keep in touch and even before that, though we could not meet very often the connection has remained. It happens like that with some people. Something holds us together.

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The Red Seat (Sunday Photo fiction)

Dheeraj and his friends gazed at the red seat with satisfaction. Their life had changed so much. Earlier they had attended school but had not bothered to listen to their teachers. They just wanted to have a good time. Their parents were not aware of this. The boys were least bothered when teachers scolded them.

Then, the new teacher had joined their school. At first, they had just ignored him. He was just another adult trying to change them. Days went by. They sat in his class but he just ignored them. He also told them they could leave the class whenever they wanted to and made it clear he liked to teach those who were interested. That was a new experience for the boys. They started listening to his lessons and liked what they heard. Days went by. They were learning and enjoying themselves. He understood their excess energy. The new teacher and the drawing master taught them to paint different pictures on the school walls. They looked beautiful. This inspired them to paint the seats in their school ground and just outside. The rains had started but the paint had not faded. The boys were very happy.

(199 words)

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Photo credit: Reena Saxena

The Red Seat (Sunday Photo fiction)

Everyday Moments (# SOL-2019)

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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.

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The weather and rain continues to be the main topic of conversation. It has been so hot and humid and water shortage on top of everything. I cannot even imagine life without water. Today morning it rained for an hour from 3 to 4. I don’t know why, I just could not sleep, I lay awake listening to the sound of rain falling. But, unfortunately there was no water supply today. We have water in our sump and overhead tank for two more days. We are hoping we will get it by then. Otherwise we will have to buy water which will be supplied in a water tanker. Anyway, the plants look happy 😊.

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Yesterday we went to Maikuri, our village, to be with my father-in-law and brother-in-law. My father-in-law is 94. He is managing his daily routine. He talks about the past and he is not able to remember everything, so we are not able to understand all that he says. We change so much as we grow older. My husband took him to our local temple. It was a nice change for him. There is a very nice ice cream parlour in our village. The main road from one town to another passes through our village. There are shops on one side and the school on the other. The ice cream parlour owner has his own dairy and prepares the ice cream at home. We bought jackfruit ice cream. It is tasty if one likes the ripe jackfruit flavour. We started back at 3.30 and were back home by 6.

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Last week, one morning, my mother and I talked with my doddamma. I was not sure whether she would be able to hear properly. She could. She told me she enjoyed my letters. I write short stories in ‘Sunday Photo Fiction’. I write these stories to her. She likes them too. I was very happy to hear this. Doddamma is 88, she is fine in the mornings but later she gets a little confused about all that is happening around her.

We have many curry plants in our garden. I use them in my cooking. Last week I made chutney powder. We like it with dosas for breakfast.

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In March my elder brother, sister-in-law and mother had gone to Varanasi. It is and ancient city of our country on the banks of the river Ganga. My mother loved the place. They said the atmosphere there is so different and special. It is like living in a different world and different age. My sister-in-law had got salwar kameez material for me. I finished stitching the dress today. I stitch for myself and love it. There is something so soothing and satisfying in creating something. I learnt stitching long back during my college days.

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June has started and we are waiting for the monsoon season to start.
Everyday Moments
“I have come to believe that the best kind of walk, or journey, is the one in which you have no particular destination when you set out.” 
                                           – Ruskin Bond

Curry tree – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curry_tree

Curry leaves chutney powder recipe – Veg recipes of Karnataka
vegrecipesofkarnataka.com/292-curry-leaves-chutney-powder-karibevu-chutney-pudi.php

collection of 38 dosa varieties | dosa recipes for breakfast
https://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/dosa-recipes

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

Southwest Monsoon 2019: Normal Onset dates of Southwest …
https://www.skymetweather.com/content/weather-news-and-analysis/southwest-monsoon-2019…

 

Kira’s Sunday Scribbles – Word of the Day Challenge

Welcome to Kira’s weekly inspirational art piece.
Let the whole picture tell you a story, or dive into the small intricate details to make one up! Write a poem, a fiction piece or come up with a picture or drawing of your own, that you feel relates to it.

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“Little green island

Swallowed by the pink hole,

Reached the other end,

To find a different world

But it was similar too.”

Tanka: Poetic Form | Academy of American Poets
https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/text/tanka

The Japanese tanka is a thirty-one-syllable poem, traditionally written in a single unbroken line. A form of waka, Japanese song or verse, tanka translates as “short song,” and is better known in its five-line, 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count form.

 

#SoCS June 1/19

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Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “silent/silence.” Use one or both in your post. Have fun!

There are different types of ‘silence’. Some bring peace to the mind and the heart. Others fill the heart with a feeling of disquiet.

I get up early in morning to do Yoga, pranayama and asanas. I love this time of the day because there is silence all around me. It is dark and slowly I see light outside the window. Just before daybreak the silence is broken by the ‘bird-music’. Sometimes it is like an orchestra out there. The music gladdens my heart.

The summer has been very hot and we are waiting for the rains. The afternoon heat silences the world around us. We do not hear the birds. There is a stillness in the air and it is so silent. This silence is not a peaceful one. It is as if something is hanging above us and something is going to happen.

We live in a small place. When it is dark there is silence around us. There are houses around but we do not hear any sound from them. The night sky, with stars shining above and the moon with its silver light makes the silence magical. We have a ‘Paarijatha’ tree in our garden. The flowers are very fragrant and they bloom at night. The fragrance adds to the beauty. This silence is so peaceful.  The day ends and a new one is to begin the next morning. 

Each day starts with silence and ends with silence.

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“We need to pay heed to the many silences in our lives…. each silence has a character of its own.”
~Kent Nerburn, “The Eloquence of Silence,” Small Graces: The Quiet Gifts of Everyday Life, 1998

To build a Pyramid (Sunday Photo Fiction)

Sunday Photo fiction

Advaith was almost six. He loved to ask questions. And he wanted his parents to answer them. He was fascinated with space, galaxies and black holes. At the same time something earthly interested him. He loved to collect stones. His collection was quite big.

One day he saw a picture of a pyramid. His mother told him such structures were called pyramids. They were made thousands of years ago. All sorts of questions came to his mind. How were those huge stones shaped? How were they placed on top of one another when there were no machines back then? It looked as if there was nothing to hold them together. Why did they not fall down? He wanted the answers immediately.

He and his father went to the local library and borrowed a book about pyramids. Every evening his father read out to him. Advaith was excited and decided to build a small pyramid. He did not know from where he would get the stones or how he would give them the rectangular shape. It was his dream.
(178 words)

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(Photo credit : Susan Spaulding)