Aug 31, 2010

Welcome Home

Sweet smell of earth, welcoming breeze
Love and joy of friends who care
Crows & minas sharing in the joy but
Neighborhood dogs not so sure

Coconuts planted by tiny hands
Now so tall and beyond my reach
Curry leaf plants once so scarce
Are now yielding in such abundance

Always wet washing stone
Now dried up and out of sight
Heavily used grinding stones
Now forgotten in unknown corner

My precious study table is now so old & frail
Yet so proudly holding my huge suitcases
Stainless steel plates and tumblers
Are constant reminders of childhood dinners

The same old same old water pots
The same old same old dosai stone
The same old same old local stores
With familiar chatting and friendly glances

It feels the same to be home
To breath in the love of my Mother
Much loved and welcomed as always
Just like many many years ago...

Aug 12, 2010

Finger People

I love looking at people's fingers. I googled to see if anyone else has written about it, surprised to find none. Strange but true, one of the things I notice when I meet someone is their fingers! I even remember people by their fingers - how it looks, how it curves, thin or thick, short or long, are the nail tips white or transparent, or anything else interesting about them! It is even more interesting that I can quickly associate "a" finger with someone else's that I know of.

This is one reason why I don't sit in the back seats in the church as my concentration would be on the fingers when people raise their hands to worship. I even learnt some American Sign Language because of my love for fingers... I would say it is the most beautiful language in the universe!

I believe fingers define the personality of one's true self. Even the facial expressions can deceive but fingers never. To tell you the truth I am yet to see fingers that are uninteresting which makes me believe every one has something good in them.

The most handsome fingers I have seen are my Papa's. They were kind, gentle, artistic and well made. As he would clean a chicken or fish or cut a jack fruit I would sit and watch his beautiful fingers. I would imagine his fingers made the things taste better. In fact Papa's fingers were the last thing I touched for my final farewell...

My Chithiema's (Aunt) thumb bends over backwards, when we were little she used to feed us rice and her fingers made the food very delicious... Akka's are the softest I have seen... you guessed it right, she hardly works! Her nails are the shiniest - naturally... My brother Delightson's fingers are the most innocent looking fingers... Cousin Jacinth's are baby like and they remind me of the childhood spent together. Amma's fingers are plump and very generous, they always give, give, give ...

The most beautiful fingers I have seen are my daughter Sharon's. It is so stylish, long and elegant. They are very strong and at the same time very slender too. Very lady like and sophisticated..., she plays drums and basket ball and the fingers play along...

The most hard working fingers I have noticed are my Grandma's - Papa's Mom. We could see the carbon from the wood burning oven she used, on her finger tips, we could see the lines of her palm very clearly, they were old and frail yet long and very strong...

My husband's and Joshua's fingers and toes match picture perfect. Rachel's toes are just like mine... I often say God used the same mold for our fingers and toes respectively.

My fingers I would say are hard working and creative, my favorite are my little fingers (pinkies) -they curve in the tip and wouldn't stand straight... My friends say it brings me luck - may be it does!

Fingers are special just like the people they belong to... I am glad I know so many of them...

Aug 10, 2010

Series: This NRILife; Life is all about change!

Presenting yet another guest post on This NRI Life... If you are interested to write a guest post please feel free to contact me at

About the Author: Vanitha Jayaprakash & myself were hostel mates in Chennai taking baby steps into our career. Most of my carefree days were spent with her, sharing one coke, dancing in the rain, counting the stars, making teddy bears, dreaming about America, playing beach ball etc. We continue to be great friends through all these years. I thank her sincerely for all that she has been to me and wish her the best in everything life is yet to offer...

Com'on let's see what Vanitha has to say about This NRI Life... Feel free check her out at: Black Walnut Pearl

Life is all about change!
I was born in a city, brought up in a nearby town, went to three schools, spent five years in one college, packed to a nearby city for my first job, dwelt in three different places, gained experience from two companies, flew all the way from one part of the earth to the other, precisely to perform on a new stage.

Change, big or small, good or bad is the driven force of our life. This is a whole new world. I love this country that adopted me. I rejoice the air that carries unlimited possibility. Here, the culture is reverse, the attire is seasonable, the language is apprehensible and the attitude is grateful. And, the freedom hold wings, People are colored, seasons are stimulative, and the cleanliness is breathable.

Retention, on the other hand can be pushing or pulling, can be relishing or repenting. There are memories that I treasure from the country that gave me this great gift called Life. The familiar faces and the intimacy with places, friends who are very much in tune and the jargons that make the communication complete, the smell of jasmine and the taste of instant coffee, the authenticity in food and the land that makes you feel home. That is an accustomed comfort ground.

Life is all about change. How we embrace and direct the wind of change is in our hands. As someone quoted, “Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely”. No one can go back and start a new beginning. Hence, holding onto my memories, moving forward, thinking that this present will become my past one day and at that stage I’ll have a wonderful past built behind me to look back and cherish. Happy Life!!

PS: I would like to dedicate my “This NRILife: Life is all about change!” to NRIGirl on her birthday. Many happy returns!

Aug 9, 2010

Shocking Surprise

This morning as I got ready and came downstairs there was a shocking surprise waiting for me. Want to take a guess? Sure, go ahead!

No we didn't sleep with the garage door ajar.... No, it is not that we woke up two hours late that we had to take a day off... That's wrong too that we had an unexpected guest to cheer us up!

So, what was it?! The shock was that Israel had removed his mustache - completely! Unbelievable!!

I think I screamed at first and then started laughing uncontrollably and then finally subsided and got a closer look... The surprise was that I didn't dislike it altogether... though I still burst out anytime I see him...

Life as it unfolds... Very interesting...

Aug 8, 2010

Saving my Face on Facebook

I agree Facebook is good to find long last friends. But I am upset that it tracks each and every trace I leave behind. Whose wall I wrote on, who I added as my latest friend(s), whose pictures I commented on... etc  What is it?! Why would I want the whole world to see this? And as far as I have searched I don't think it is easy to erase all my older posts... It is so annoying.

Also these days everyone walks around with a digital camera and they 'click' you even when you are not posable and before you know it ends up on Facebook. I hate this.

I want to be on Facebook; but only if I can just be me, wishing people on their birthdays, liking someone's status update, commenting on a picture, writing on a wall etc - without announcing my whereabouts to the entire world...

If only Facebook would help me save my face...

Series: This NRILife; Interview with an NRI

Note: I requested some of you to write a guest post on the topic:This NRI Life. The offer is still open. If you are interested please feel free to contact me at I will be glad to publish your guest post in NRIGirl blog.

Here's an interview with an NRI close to my heart...

How is your NRI Life?
It's amazing; it's my dream come true. I had a blind belief that I will be in America one day just by looking at a picture of New York. It's the mercy of God that I am here today. I used to draw and paint out of my imagination. When I landed in America it was Fall and it reminded me of my own paintings with colorful leaves and beautiful scenery...

How do you like it here?
Very much, compared to Indian life. It is extremely hard to come up for an ordinary human being with honest ways in India. But here in America if you truly believe and put in your honest efforts, you can make it big. It's a land of opportunities.

Will you go back to India?
Never. My childhood was very rough. India only reminds me of those days.

Do you feel you have achieved something in This NRI Life?
I definitely wanted to get out of India. Now that I am I consider it an achievement - not on my own strength, but only because of the grace of God. My dreams are bigger; I am still on my way to achieve most of them...

Are you concerned about raising your kids here?
I was. But lately it seems difficult raising kids back home too. If you can instill the fear of the Lord in your children at their young age, you can trust that they will be fine wherever they are.

What is one thing you want to share with the NRIGirl blog readers?
I appreciate NRIGirl's efforts for this opportunity. It's a great place to hang out and get to know more people. For the readers I want to say this: Do good and keep moving; don't expect rewards. If you do, you will be greatly disappointed. God bless you all!

Aug 5, 2010

Hard time with Hard boiled eggs

Not sure about you but I have always had tough time making hard boiled eggs. I understand it looks so simple and doesn't seem worthy of a blog post... But only I know what it feels like not being able to make the perfectly smooth hard boiled eggs!

Anytime I intend to make it, I am faced with a dilemma: Should I first boil the water then put the eggs, or put the eggs in the cold water and then bring it to a boil. Either way it has failed me...

Mom says "Count to 100". I have tried counting to 100 and even as much as five times that sometimes. But nope, it won't care. I have let it cool in the same pot or immediately rushed it to the sink for a run of cold water. Neither has helped.

Either it comes out undercooked or cracked or too difficult to de-shell. I would end up using spoons, fork, knife etc to pry open the shell which would result in an unsightly uneven egg.

Once for a summer get together I volunteered to bring hard boiled eggs. I thought it would be a breeze than making an elaborate dish. We had bought 5 dozen eggs and cooked it in 3 or 4 pots. This time I was extra cautious and didn't rush through the process. Gave enough time to cook, cool and clean. Believe it or not, not even a single egg came out with smooth surface!! Worse yet, we were two hours late for the get together ...

I was beginning to shun away from recipes that called for hard boiled eggs. We were satisfied scrambling them or frying them as omelets or bulls-eye...

As a last attempt we tried an egg cooker... and it worked! Now I can make the very best hard boiled eggs,smooth and perfect from any given angle... Needless to say we use it as often as possible...

Hard boiled eggs anyone? Com'on over!

Aug 4, 2010

Where is Gomathy?

Where is Gomathy?
Gomathy was my childhood friend. She had five elder brothers. I used to be very fond of 'elder brothers' those days.I was always after her to give me one brother. I offered her Five star chocolates, extra minutes on the rented bicycle etc for exchange of a brother - any brother - but an elder brother. It never worked out...

Now my question is where is Gomathy? We used to live in the same neighborhood. Went to the same school from Kindergarten all the way through our XII grade. We walked as one big group to and from school blocking the whole street all the way across... The last thing I remember of her, I went to show off my newly bought Kinetic Honda... That was in 1994! She was so happy for me.

After that somewhere somehow I lost her... I am sure she is now married and lives happily everafter. Hope I get to run into her one day. I have to thank her for one thing - for teaching me how to ride the bicycle...

Same way, Where is Chithra?
We had such fun filled days in our PG hostel. One evening we didn't like the dinner and didn't eat well. But as we were studying/chatting late through the night we were extremely hungry and didn't have any snacks. So we both tip-toed to the kitchen to get some left over chappatis in the middle of the night. The funniest part was as we were getting ready to jump into the kitchen from the dining hall opening we saw a BIG rat running inside the kitchen and got very scared. We started giggling uncontrollably but fearing the warden or the kitchen girls would wake up. That's one night I will never forget...

Where is she now? How are her sisters? How many children does she have? Is she still in Karur?

And finally, Where is Honey?
She was my hostel mate during my UG days in Bangalore. She was elder to me by a few years and was very kind to me always. She took me out for shopping, movies, restaurants - all at her own expense...I often wonder where she is.... how she is... Is she married? kids? Does she remember me?

If you happen to stumble upon them anywhere, please let them know I am looking for them long and hard... will you?

Aug 3, 2010

Conversation for Couples (Do's and Dont's)

* Don't use conversation to punish each other
* Don't use conversation to force agreement to your way of thinking
* Don't dwell on mistakes, past or present
* Do develop interest in each other's favorite topics of conversation
* Do balance the conversation
* Do use conversation to inform, investigate, & understand your spouse
* Do give each other undivided attention

Proof of affairs (Keys to Affair Proofing Marriage)

* Do not compare
* Do not set your own trap (life is different from movies and books)
* Burry the PAST
* Look through your spouse's glass
* Be the Host; Not the Guest
* Activate your love by action
* Start an affair at home...

Aug 1, 2010

A little while longer....

For the past few days I haven't been myself. I fear I hear my heart beat, feel feverish, talk nonsense, tear up... The problem? It's just that Rachel is going to middle school in the Fall. I can't take it lightly...

We were just married and just had our first child and just the second child and just the third and just bought a house and just settled in a job and how soon....? Rachel to pass out of her elementary school...? No something has gone wrong somewhere... It is defintely not possible... Where did the time fly? What was I doing all these years? Sleeping?!

While I haven't even forgotten my elementary school days how is it even possible that my daughter has passed that stage too?! Just like how my fifth grade only lives in my memory, it has become a "past" for Rachel too. How did I allow this? Why didn't I pause that running clock? It's all my fault - I shouldn't have changed the batteries... If only I hadn't, this wouldn't have happend... Now what will I do?

If I don't wake up now the next ten years will also slip by very fast or even faster.... My children's childhood will become a "past"... They will be out of college and it would be time to marry them off... It makes my heart heavy and brings tears in my eyes... If only there is a way to hold the time still... a little while longer... Is there?!

"My times are in your hands" Psalm 31:15
"My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle" Job: 7:6
"My days are swifter than a runner" Job: 9:25
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