Thursday, November 30, 2006

My Encounter with the King of the Beasts !!

I couldn't imagine we were there - the Lion Sanctuary at Gir (Gujarat)- Only Asiatic Lion Forest reserve. The idea of visiting this place, when I first saw the hoarding at a traffic signal "We offer a unique and stimulating wildlife adventure - The “Walking with Lions” Safari. The lions are unrestrained and roam free as you join them on a walk through the vegetation on the banks of the river. The safari is fully supervised and professionally managed by an experienced and qualified team

During the safari inside the jungle, our guide elaborated Lions' behavior towards human intervention, within "their" territory. During the daytime the lion seldom attacks man, and sometimes even when meeting a traveler, he is said to pass by him unnoticed; but when the shades of evening descend, his mood undergoes a change. After sunset it is dangerous to venture out of camp, for the lion lies in wait. It was already 5 PM and I could sense the humid tropical climate. After an hour or so, near the so-called 'spotting area', I decided to take a little walk around the thick vegetation to calm my nerves and overcome his dreadful narration my guide gave. I was transformed into a different world, clicking photos of Mother Nature.

The pleasant sound of rushing water coming from the small river, a few hundred feet from the place where we were standing in a group, made me realize that I was indeed very thirsty for a draught of that cool sparkling water. I looked carefully around the peaceful dusk scene and listened intently for any strange sounds before venturing cautiously towards the river. Having assured myself that 'all was well', I went close the river, which was hidden by the rocks. A small herd of deers were also watering a little further downstream.

However, my enjoyment was cut short in an instant, when I spied out of the corner of my eye an unexpected ominous sight......Less than twenty feet from me, posing on the rocks, was a huge majestic Lion.

Terrified at the unexpected sight of such a beast, that seemed to have its eyes fixed elsewhere, I instantly took my camera. The moment I clicked it (the photo above), I see the lion stand up and stretch itself. Breathless and half dead with fear, I remained silent and motionless for a length of time. To my great terror and astonishment, my eyes met those of the animal, which flashed fire at me.

I do not have words to describe the feelings I experienced at that high-pressure moment. My hands are still shaking as I type these words on my computer. All of a sudden, I hear my group calling out my name aloud. I walk back, step-by-step, not showing my back to the King, thinking it might upset him and end up in a futile catch-me-if-you-can game. After I presented myself in the vicinity of my safari group, we hear the King give a loud roar and everyone was shocked to see me emerge out of the thick vegetation, white as marble !!

P.S: I am sure you enjoyed reading my encounter experience with the King of the Beasts !! Now for the climax… this was just 'spine-tingling' narration I tried to create, after remembering a fascinating piece in my eighth grade. This was about experiences of hunting Royal Bengal tigers in the Indian Himalaya by Jim Corbett, an expert in the pursuit of man-eating big cats, in his book titled "Man-Eaters of Kumaon". The above photo was shot by me at Hyderabad's Nehru Zoological Park :-)

Friday, September 01, 2006

Trip to God's Own Country - Kumarakom

We have been off the Net for quite sometime. Bharath is usually busy with his office work. Once in a while when he finds some time off his work, he blogs. After resigning my job and becoming a full-time home maker, I have been quite busy with my hands full with responsibilities. I believe that it is quite challenging to be a full-time home maker, than being a career-oriented woman. But being busy has been a great fun.

In these three months, there have been lots of interesting things that have happened. One of the most wonderful event was our trip to Kumarakom in Kerela. Such a wonderful place.... So close to nature.

We both wanted to break off from our hectic schedule. So as soon as I resigned, we planned a trip to this place. The entire credit for selecting the place goes to Bharath. We had a wonderful three days away from the hustle-bustle of the city, traffic, and work. We stayed in KTDC WaterScapes resort. It is on the bank of the Vembanad lake (the largest backwater lake). The added attraction of this resort is that, it is surrounded with lush greenery and also has an natural bird sanctuary, with many exotic species of birds...

The entire village of Kumarakom is a group of 27 islets surrounded by canals branching from the Vembanad lake. Most of the people here earn their living either with fishing or from farming. The main crop grown here is paddy.

The paddy fields are below the sea level and are safeguarded from the backwaters by just the clay walls separating it from the canals. The main mode of transport within the village is by canoes.

From here we visited an island named 'Pathirimanal'. The specialty of this island is that it is totally uninhabited. There were 8 families which were living on this island but they were evacuated and moved to the main island of Kumarakom. The tropical rain forest vegetation can be seen in its natural sense without any human intervention. The stay was sheer bliss and revived our spirits.

We had gone there during off season and hence were lucky to see the tropical climate (sudden showers) in action. It was an amazing experience. In just about a minute's time the weather changed from sunny to heavy downpour accompanied by a gale. I am not sure if my words have justified the beauty of the place...

WaterScapes @ Kumarakom comes with our highest recommendation to any nature lover, visiting this @ God's own country....

Friday, May 26, 2006

Quit work

Today is my last day at my current job and firm. I have quit job and have decided to take a break from the hectic schedule. Wanted to enjoy the leisure at home for sometime before I can get back to career. Feeling relaxed and happy anticipating the less hectic life from Monday. I will have enough time for all my hobbies and interests now.

Friday, May 19, 2006

On the eve of our first anniversary

It is the eve of our first wedding anniversary and the tragedy is that both of us are at our work places doing regular work. Bharath is on call with his US conterparts for some complicated proposal delivery and I am supporting customers for their production hiccups while implementing the help desk software.

But we both plan to enjoy the day tomorrow. We are strictly off the phone for official calls (corresponding superiors please take the hint) and I am taking an off tomorrow from office. We have both our families visiting us. Hope to have a gala time tomorrow - our second wedding day. It just feels great realizing that we have completed one full year after marriage.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Balancing work life and social life

I got a fwd from Bharath about a topic on Late Sitting and what the Infosys' chairman and chief mentor Narayana Murthy felt about it. Am just quotting it below:
Infosys' Chairman and Chief Mentor Mr. Narayana Murthy's Speech on Late sitting:

I know people who work 12 hours a day, six days a week, or more. Some people do so because of a work emergency where the long hours are only temporary. Other people I know have put in these hours for years. I don't know if they are working all these hours, but I do know they are in the office this long. Others put in long office hours because they are addicted to the workplace. Whatever the reason for putting in overtime, working long hours over the long term is harmful to the person and to the organization.

There are things managers can do to change this for everyone's benefit. Being in the office long hours, over long periods of time, makes way for potential errors. My colleagues who are in the office long hours frequently make mistakes caused by fatigue. Correcting these mistakes requires their time as well as the time and energy of others. I have seen people work Tuesday through Friday to correct mistakes made after 5 PM on Monday.

Another problem is that people who are in the office for long hours are not pleasant company. They often complain about other people (who aren't working as hard); they are irritable, or cranky, or even angry. Other people avoid them. Such behavior poses problems, where work goes much better when people work together instead of avoiding one another.

As Managers, there are things we can do to help people leave the office. First and foremost is to set the example and go home ourselves. I work with a manager who chides people for working long hours. His words quickly lose their meaning when he sends these chiding group e-mails with a time-stamp of 2 AM, Sunday.

Second is to encourage people to put some balance in their lives. For instance, here is a guideline I find helpful:
  1. Wake up, eat a good breakfast, and go to work.
  2. Work hard and smart for eight or nine hours.
  3. Go home.
  4. Read the comics, watch a funny movie, dig in the dirt, play with your kids, etc.
  5. Eat well and sleep well.
This is called recreating. Doing steps 1, 3, 4, and 5 enable step 2. Working regular hours and recreating daily are simple concepts. They are hard for some of us because that requires personal change. They are possible since we all have the power to choose to do them.

In considering the issue of overtime, I am reminded of my eldest son. When he was a toddler, if people were visiting the apartment, he would not fall asleep no matter how long the visit, and no matter what time of day it was. He would fight off sleep until the visitors left... It was as if he was afraid that he would miss something. Once our visitors' left, he would go to sleep. By this time, however, he was over tired and would scream through half the night with nightmares. He, my wife, and I, all paid the price for his fear of missing out.

Perhaps some people put in such long hours because they don't want to miss anything when they leave the office. The trouble with this is that events will never stop happening. That is life! Things happen 24 hours a day. Allowing for little rest is not ultimately practical. So, take a nap. Things will happen while you're asleep, but you will have the energy to catch up when you wake.

Hence "LOVE YOUR JOB, BUT NEVER FALL IN LOVE WITH YOUR COMPANY" (Because you never know when it stops loving you !!!!)

- Narayana Murthy
Reading this I was reminded of my collegues who put in so many extra hours of work and look so haggered. After the 2 days weekend, they come in so fresh. As the week progresses, they keep putting in so much of extra hours of work and by the time it is Friday, you feel sorry for them. They look as though they are gonna crumble the next minute. And as mentioned in the above speech, some of them crib about their collegues not working that long and other such problems.

Why do we torture ourselves to such long hours? An interesting quote that I came across which may be related to the current post:

"Twenty years down the line you will feel sorry for the things that you did not do than the things that you did. So never postpone a thing for future."

Always ensure that you strike a balance between your personal, official, and social life. This makes your life enjoyable. And probably it is time to realize that extended hours does not increase productivity... Instead it will only reduce productivity as it paves way for increased human error due to fatigue. Ponder!!!!

Also the quote that he gives at the end of his speech is also a point to ponder and a quote that is close to my heart.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Self Responsibility and Self Realization

I guess most of us keep getting forwards on how other countries maintain the cleanliness of their streets and improve the decorum but we as Indians do not do it... Not in our own country and sometimes, not in the country that we visit also. These mails and discussions on the internet actually makes me wonder. How much do we really insist and imbibe this thought of cleanliness in our own lifestyle?

Do we tell our kids not throw litter out of the train window while travelling? Do we consciously make an effort to collect all the garbage that we churn out and put it safely in the dustbins? Most of the times, I have statements, "Naan mattum kuppa podama irundha ooru clean aaiduma?"... meaning, "If I alone do not litter, will the city become a clean place?".

If we are so conscious of keeping our surrounding clean why don't we even tell our closest friends and relatives not to litter? I have been laughed at for collecting all garbage during the travel and get it home for dumping it in the dustbin. But now, there are few around me who also follow the same. This makes me feel happy and my hope that slowly the habit to litter will reduce and we would all become more conscious of our environment increases.

Everytime I get such email fwds talking about keep your surrounding clean, this is what strikes me first. Just thought that I would share what I do with the rest of the world. This habit of littering is not restricted to India or just Indians. Humans all over the world have this lethargy. But we tend not to accept it coz of the rosy picture that we see from what is told to us through media or by people who visit such places. Reality is much different from what is heard or perceived. Let us all take a concious effort to change from within first. This would automatically bring in a change in the entire outlook of the society as a whole. Just my two cents...

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Jallianwala Bagh massacre

Today (April 13) in 1919, the most tragic event of the Jallianwala Bagh masaccre took place. Around 20000 people had gathered on the auspicious day of Baisakhi at Jalianwala Bagh, adjacent to Golden Temple (Amritsar), to lodge their protest peacefully against persecution by the British Indian Government. Just before sunset, General Dyre arrived with this batallion and opened fire indiscriminately at innocent empty handed people leaving hundreds of people dead, including women and children. Around 1650 rounds were fired into the crowd. The crowd was not even warned to disperse nor did they have any other way to exit the grounds other than the one that the General and his batallion were blocking. The only other place they could hide was a well. So people started jumping in the well to save themselves, only to find that the ones that followed suit were crushing them below the water. Many innocent lives were lost in this.

The official report accounts for 379 deaths. But it could quite be possible that the death toll might have been as high as 1000 or more. People who died even included the tourists (men, women, and children) who had come to Amritsar to celebrate the Baishaki festival. Udham Singh, a Sikh teenager who was being raised at Khalsa Orphanage, saw the happening on April 13, 1919 with his own eyes and avenged the killings of 1300+ of his countrymen by killing Michael O'Dwyer in London.

The details on these massacre can be found in detail at

How many of us really remember this day from our history? Though there is a historical monument built in Amristar for these martyrs, how many visit that place or even think of them? Do any of us even remember the lives lost in this massacre and pay homage to them? Don't they deserve a nation wide respect and rememberence?

I salute to all those noble and innocent souls that died in the massacre on this day in 1919 and wish and hope that nothing as tragic as that ever happens here after. I pray that their souls rest in peace.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Young Party contesting the assembly elections

I generally do not discuss on political topics. Not because it is controversial but coz, it does not greatly interest me. But I read something that caught my attention and so I thought, I would post it here for others to know also. - an article in Hindu that talks about a party with three young educated people contesting the assembly elections. - This is the website of the party.

Reminded me of the movie Yuva. Till date there were lot of them who were just talking about young blood entering the political scenario might bring in change in the political structure of India. Hope this is a start for the change that has been talked about for so long by lots of people.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Trip to Vembar - An adventure in the Coastal Village

During the second week of March, we make a trip to Virudhunagar - my hometown. From there, we had planned a 2-days trip to the remote southern coastal village, named "Vembar" (Tuticorin District). This is my maternal ancestral place of worship. Every year, about 5000 odd people go there to offer prayers to our family deity (I love those trips... the last trip I remember was over 12 years ago). We were twelve of us this time in a cozy van. Traveling on the bumpy road (about 3 hours) we recollected memories of the earlier get-togethers. We halted at several places for snacks and to manage the downpour of summer rains !!

Back in history, there are some lineages of the Pandiyan Kings associated to Vembar. The people who live here are well versed in the traditional shipbuilding, navigation knowledge, pearl fishery, fishing and salt-making. We had to stay in the special thatched 'tents' constructed for this function. We worshipped the deities, spread across the barren lands. On the second night, we had to stay put in the van, since the tents were soaked due to heavy downpour. It was a real tough night!!

The best part of the trip was the bath in the clean sea (Bay of Bengal). We went to the beach twice and had fun. On the shore, vendors were very busy auctioning their daily catch. We could find all kinds of marine life - ranging from various fishes (Sharks et al), giant prawns, Sea cucumbers, Crabs, Sponges and many more. We saw a giant ray fish (whew) and an Octopus (a small one though)!!

Being a nature-lover, I was amazed by the unpolluted beach. Walking by the seashores, we 'caught' four live starfishes from their natural habitat. Bunches of visitors were awestruck by our 'catch'. Starfish (or Sea stars) are marine invertebrates (they are NOT actually fishes) belonging to phylum Echinodermata (bio. students?), class Asteroidea (!!?!!). They exhibit a radial symmetry, typically with five "arms" which radiate from body. They do not have movable skeletons, but instead possess a vascular system, having numerous "tube feet", which function in locomotion and feeding.

There were lots of fishing boats bobbing on the water. We took an "adventure" ride (none of us knew swimming) inside the sea, with the local fishermen acting as our tourist guides. The sea looked a deep blue, calm and almost scary.

On the way back from Vembar, we worshipped that 42-Feet tall statue of VetKaaliamman - a breath-taking, vibrant, beautiful statue in the open space (and hence the name of the Goddess. ‘Vettai Velli’ in thamizh means open, without shelter). The thundershowers continued to give us company (and the 4 starfishes in a bucket), till we came back to my hometown.

This trip is sure to be etched in all our hearts forever...

- Bharath

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Holi!!!!!!!! The festival of colour!!!

Most of us are aware of the fact that Holi is celebrated to commemorate the mythological event of the burning of Holika (Hiranyakashipu's sister) while trying to kill Prahlad (Hiranyakashipu's son). Holika was immune to fire but Prahlad's earnest devotion to Lord Vishnu saved him from the fire while burning the fire immune Holika, in whose lap Prahlad sat. So huge bonfires are burnt on the eve of the festival, symbolic of cleansing the air of all evil.

But today I was surpirsed to read in an article about holi on the net that, even in South holi is celebrated but is associated to a different mythological event. Here is the event as I read it on the e-article.
In the south, people trace the occasion to Kamadev - the god of love. Once in his foolish pride, Kamadev aimed his arrow at the mighty Hindu god Shiva who was in deep meditation. Lord Shiva opened his third eye and burnt him to ashes.

Grief-stricken Rati, Kamdaev's wife, beseeched Lord Shiva to take pity on her and restore her husband's life.

Shiva relented and granted a boon that Kamadev would live but he would remain 'anang', or without the physical human form. In Tamil Nadu, Holi is known by names like Kamavilas, Kaman Pandigai or Kama Dahanam."
THAT WAS a SURPRISE for me. In such a case, I wonder when and where was this festival forgotten and is now associated only with the Holika mythology and North Indians.

More interesting facts about the festival that I found on the internet:

This festival is also associated with the immortal love of Lord Krishna and Radha, and hence Holi is spread over 16 days in Vrindavan as well as Mathura - the two cities where the playful god is said to have lived.

In West Bengal, the festival is called Dol Purnima and revolves around what is considered an auspicious full moon night.

This is a day when people let go of all inhibitions and smear each other with gulal (coloured powder) and water with playful abandon. Needless to say, it is a NATIONAL HOLIDAY (Surprise!!!!!!!. I am wondering why this is not happening. Right now I am sitting at office and typing this blog).

Holi ofcourse is considered incomplete by many without bhang, a traditional Indian intoxicant made of ground cannabis leaves, milk and dry fruit. This gives a high and adds to the merry and naughty atmosphere.

Being an Indian festival, sweets always are a part of it. A special delicacy made of flour, coconut and jaggery called gujia is prepared in most households and relished by one and all.

As gujia and other sweets do the rounds, singing and dancing to the beats of dholaks follow. Many nowadays prefer to celebrate with hit Bollywood songs.

Once the fun and frolic is over, people retreat for an elaborate bath - in a symbolic cleansing of one's soul and the starting afresh of a new season.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

One of those Tags.......

It has been long since I posted my last blog post. But even this does not have anything important. I was tagged by Hari and I have been postponing this for a long time now. Hence this post. Till this tag I was free of the tagging concept that has been going on around in the blogosphere. So here it is.

Ten Years Ago

I finished my 11th standard.

Five Years Ago

Was in Hyderabad as a project trainee.

Last one year
  • Been with AdventNet for the past 3 years as a technical writer.
  • Married Bharath and moved up the ladder from spinster to a married woman.

Busy day … Nothing major happened …

Five Yummy things
  • Adai …
  • Pizza from Pizza Hut …
  • Bhel puri and Pani Puri
  • Palak (keerai)
  • Chola Battura
Five Songs I know by heart
  • Poomalai vaangi vandhal
  • Neetru illadha maatrum ennadhu
  • Hum Aapke Hain Koun.
  • Dil To Paagal Hai.
  • Chaand Ne Kuch Kaha.
Places I escape to

Home Sweet Home is the place I would love to be.

Five things I'd do if I have money
  • Make life comfortbale for my loved ones.
  • Donate for the welfare and studies of a kid that needs the money most.
  • Buy a flat for ourselves and set the interiors to blend with our taste.
  • Share the joy of having money by planning a tour with my close ones.
  • Invest for future of our family.
TV Shows

Tiny TV on POGO.

5 Things I can't Live without
  • Constant learning at home or at work.
  • Books
  • Basic amenities & Money
  • Family and Friends
  • Tatting
5 Cuisines
  • South Indian
  • Punjabi / North Indian
  • Chinese
I am not much of an experimentor with food and cuisines.

People whom I would like to Tag …

I don't think I would like to tag anyone.

I may be off the blogosphere for some more time, unless Bharath decides to post any article of his choice.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Random Thoughts in Search of the 'Soul' !!

"The individual who is mistake-free is also probably sitting around doing nothing. And that is a very big mistake" (John Wooden). I am writing this piece to make you think, while you are probably sitting around doing nothing….

Life is a wonderful thing to have - as confusing or simple as you might think. Have always been wondering what "Soul" or "Spirit" means, can it be seen or felt, has it anything to do with natural state of mind, our death etc. Lot of people believe that when we die our 'Soul' goes into some sort of re-birth or an unknown world, where it manifests/purifies before being re-born in another living form - the belief is that the 'Soul' has to experience all aspects of life ! It is known that the Egyptians believed in reincarnation or the transmigration of the 'Soul'. Bible described the 'resurrection' and many Hindu epics elaborate about Karma, Avatars and Re-births. Yet what happens to the 'Soul' upon physical (clinical or biological) death? Where does the 'Soul' go?

Has it anything to do with Spiritualism, Religion, Science, Gods, Ghosts, Afterlife - or an interconnectivity of all these things? Is it the so-called "force" we think an aspect of Mother Nature - all forms of energy - a physical-chemical-electromagnetic-spiritual makeup? Is it purely a human perception? Throughout history, human beings have worshipped different gods, made different attributions to these "good" or "evil" forces, that reacted different ways. Many religions, cults, researchers have poured out tons of 'gyan' and philosophies on Life, the Soul,the Mind, Emotions and Death....

How would an Immaterial 'Soul' interact with our Material Body? Feelings (like anger, stress) are proven to be purely a result of chemistry and biology - with no need for spiritual or supernatural phenomenon. What controls the functions such as the respiration, heart-beating, blood circulation, etc and what powers the brain? Without a 'Soul', the body is proven to be completely inactive and lifeless. Have you ever heard of an out-of-body experience where the person has 'woken' up from death, to discover their body has continued normally, going to work, etc? - No. In that case, if Ghosts are not physical bodies, then, they must be souls too !! Is the 'Soul' a 'backup' of the data in our physical brain that is somehow liberated, transformed to spirit form (whatever that is) and can live on?

Another serious contradiction is about 'Death'. In a clinical death, those the person is declared "dead", his cells are still alive. This allows us to pinpoint which aspects of life are 'Soul'-sensitive, which parts are affected by the presence of a 'Soul'. This implies that many animals do/might not have the so-called 'Soul' - or more accurately - that their souls do not affect their functioning even if they do have them. For example, all single-cell organisms (virus or bacteria), plant life are all clearly unaffected by their 'Souls'. Higher mammals like humans, in fact, appear to be the only type of life with the brain and other organs which appear to be 'Soul'-sensitive. Many thousands of scientific experiments have been carried out yet none have produced quantifiable results.

Evolution is the next problem for the 'Soul' theory. The fact that animals and such evolve through complex statistics and simple biochemical change ... there is no part of evolution from one species to us that requires the addition of a 'Soul' along the way.

The 'Soul' seems to me like a sort of an invisible phenomenon, yet it would require our bodies to exist somehow. It is impossible to resolve these contradictions... if 'Souls' exist; they are not part of us. If they exist, they are not 'Souls' as we think of them. Many of the theories lack any logical explanation and it defies the actual facts we have on the table. Wanting something to be true does not make it factual.

Think about these highly-contradictory 'Soul' Concepts !! With the advancement of science and exploring the inner self, soon we might understand... the 'real' meaning of Life and what our dear 'Soul' is all about!!

- Bharath

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

CSA - Child Sexual Abuse

Had wanted to post about this yesterday when I read about the articles on Child Sexual Abuse. You must read the story written by my friend in his blog about CSA. It was very touching and clearly brought out the trauma that the child and its family undergoes when a CSA is committed.

From this place, I chanced on the post that inspired him to write the story.

It is so disheartening to see that our society that talks so much about culture and heritage refuses to put a stop to this. Infact even more alarming is that such cases of CSA and AIDS victims are high in our society. Rapes happen in huge numbers in our society. Why is it so?

My humble opinion in this is that, in a place where culture and heritage matter so much, the readiness to accept that such incidents are also happening is very less. People live in a state of denial. They refuse to accept that any person is capable of doing things that the child is telling. Another aspect is fear. In most cases of CSA, it is relatives or friends or family members who are the perpetrators. So the mothers either shun the statement of the child due to denial or refusal to believe that the person in question is capable of committing it or due to fear of complicating the relationships.

When I was browsing the blogs and google for information CSA and what can be done to minimize this, I chanced upon various sources, that gave information on the symptoms that indicate a case CSA in a victim.

Details on what can be classified as child abuse, indicators and effects of CSA, how to overcome the advances of a CSA perpetrator and more are available in abundance. The organization Tulir is working towards bringing about awareness about CSA and help the victims also. Creating awareness in children as well as parents is one of best modes of reducing the occurences of CSA.

Let us all try and make the world a much better place for our kids to live in by contributing our best efforts possible to spread the word around and create the necessary awareness.

Friday, February 03, 2006


Finally.... finally..... .Finally I am also joining the club of the employees who have been given Laptops...... It feels so nice to work on a Laptop... Less strain for the hands and back.... No need to worry about ergonomically designed workplace as there are no other additional components that I need to access .... Everything is a part of the laptop itself... No more adjusting the keyboard and mouse to be at the same level.... No more adjustment of the monitor to be inline with my eye height and no more struggling to adjust my chair so as to reduce the strain on my back and leg and wrist...........

Monday, January 02, 2006

A Great Man, Mr.Subrahmanyam - My Grandfather

Yesterday (Jan. 01) was my Grandpa's 11th death anniversary. It is over a decade now since he left all of us. My Mom used to say that I would always prefer to stay with my Thatha (Tamizh for Grandpa). He was a my 'Role Model' in many ways in my life.

First quality I admired in him was his 'Patience'. But if you ask his children (my Uncles), they would probably remember few occasions when he had scolded them. But I refuse to believe that he was even capable of getting angry. Such a loving and caring person he was. Everytime I say something about him in the past tense, I have to do so consciously, coz he is still alive in my memories.

So naive and close was I to him, that after his first anniversary, I got a call on my birthday in 1996, wishing me "Happy Birthday". The voice sounded so much like my Grandpa, which shook me. In the confused tone, I asked who it was, to get the answer "Un Thatha" (Ur Grandpa). For a moment, I really thought it was him and was about to shout to my Mom saying Thatha was on the phone, the hard reality hit me.... He was no more there to talk to me on the phone. And exactly the same moment, the person on the phone said, "I am ur uncle speaking. Can't you recognize my voice?". I was almost in tears but managed to finish the conversation and kept the phone down.

Even today, I try my best to keep my Grandpa alive by consciously trying to imbibe the qualities I admired in him, in my life.

He was a strong believer of "Thought Force". He says that what you think in your mind will eventually become reality. So always, think positive. From the time I have known him, he used to keep saying that he will live only for 75 years of his age and the day he dies will be celebrated by the whole world..... And guess what? He died exactly on a New Year (January 01, 1995) when the whole world rejoices. He just completed 75 years of his living in September 1994.

He died in Rai Memorial, where he was admitted for treating his colon cancer. It came as a terrible shock to all of us coz, just the previous day we all met him and wished him new year and saw him recovering back to normal. We were informed that he died of a cardiac arrest. He used to feel that he is a burden on his children coz when he was hospitalized, his sons and only daughter (my Mom) took turns to be in the hospital to help him out. He always liked to be on his own and never wished to be a burden to others. Probably, the very feeling that he was being a burden must have brought death to him. Everytime I talk about him to Bharath, he tells that he missed meeting such a person, and wishes that he came into my life earlier or my Grandpa lived longer.

When my Grandpa stayed with one of his sons in Besant Nagar, I used to go to the beach for a brisk walk with him, early in the morning. On the way back, we used to get milk packets for my aunt to prepare coffee and Boost (for me !!).

His standard phrases "Om Shanthi" and "Amma Thaaye Parashakti Lokamaatha" keep ringing in my ears. He used to say these when he felt tired or when his back hurt due to which he could not continue his work. Though my Grandpa is physically not present with me now, he still lives in my memories... very alive and he still guides me and is there to support me whenever I need him. I love you Thatha. And I miss you a lot.

- Aarthi