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A streak of hope

It was a very hectic day today, rather a marathon day in office, whole lot of work to make me feel like a log when I returned home just now. But still a small mail, just a two liner mail was big enough to motivate me for writing this post immediately. This mail was from the editor of Kaavyanjali website that he has selected the poem of Kiran Sindhu :-). Wow, so all my efforts of pushing mom has started giving some results. After whatever happened with all of us, things have been really difficult of late. Yes, we all are struggling to live a normal life but then too even if we get one free moment we just can’t stop ourselves from going back to same thoughts, same depression…it’s a very different emotion which really can’t be put in words, a feeling of pain which is beyond any rationale, a sense of loss which is beyond any consolation, a suffering beyond expression.

But amidst all this one bigger pain which was hurting me more was to see the state of my mom, who was alive yet living the life of a stone…whose eyes were open yet completely blank…who was surviving somehow yet completely hopeless about life. How it feels to see a woman like her who has always been the single most strength of my life crumpled on bed like that! How it feels to see the guiding force of my life suddenly being directionless herself! Being the eldest child of my mom, I have been taking care of mom & my brothers from a very early age in life. Despite my life being full of struggle, I still never lost hope only because of mom’s one sentence which she always used to tell me every night, I remember instead of good night, she used to say – “kal subah bahut achchi hogi beta, kal dekhna sab theek ho jayega”. Yes life was challenging but then there was this inner belief of mom that everything will be fine & tomorrow will be a better day which helped me sail through so many ups and downs of life. And after facing so many challenges why it was difficult for me to get my mom back to her normal life? I knew she will never be normal again after Kishu & Amitesh Bhaiya but then too I wanted her to have some engagement which can divert her mind & help her get out of this depression…I tried & tried & tried to motivate her, to engage her & to involve her into her long lost passion of writing & I have been literally forcing her to learn computer, internet & typing online. Initially there was a huge resistance from her side with only one question , “kya hoga likh ke”? Still with the virtue of patience which I have got from my mom only, I used to tell her, “arey likho na, log padhenge, kahi pe publish hogi tumhari kavitayein aur tumko achcha lagega”. And her replies used to be, “rehne do, ab bas kisi tarah baki zindagi kat jaye, mujhe aur kuch nahi sikhna hai”. Hmmm... :-(

Today as soon as I came back from work I checked her mail & I called her to say that one of her poems got selected in an online forum, her initial reaction was just, “OK”. But then she called back after 2 minutes and I asked “main kaise dekhoon ki kaha pe ayi hai meri kavita, mujhe bhi internet sikhao”. I said ok & then I taught her how to open websites & showed her some hindi blogs too…After some moments of silence she said, “achcha mera bhi blog bana do aur mujhe bhi typing sikha do”….YES!!! This is what I was waiting for, so at least there is some amount of interest which she showed. Aha finally there is a streak of hope, MOM, I am not going to give up on you so soon…I am going to push you more now to learn internet & start writing again…I am sure you will get at least some purpose back in life :-)
P.S.: I’m sharing the links of some of my mom’s creations with readers of my blogs, if hindi literature or poetries are of your interest, do visit the following links of my mom & I’m sure your genuine feedback will help her write more:
Link to Kaavyanjali poem (yeah I know this is just another online website, but I’m happy that at least there is a start now):
Her blog which I started today:

Main aur woh auto!

I happened to travel by auto again today & my overall journey quickly reminded me of my recent experience with Mumbai auto guys. This post will be more relatable to Bangloreans who travel by auto rickshaw often.

Location, Bangalore: Me already late, desperate enough to catch an auto rush to this nearby auto stand and see some 15 auto guys just relaxing under that tree.

Me: “X road challenge”?
1st driver: Blank look on his face, stares at me & then very conveniently turns his face away.
Yeah, I know Bangalore auto guys have the birth right to not respond!!!
Amused me replying to the 1st one & turning to the 2nd one: “Arey bhaiya reply toh kar dete”, “X road ge barthira”? (Me trying my luck best with broken kanadaa)
2nd driver: “Illa Medaam, morning time traffic jam”
Thank god at least he gave a reply, Kanadda works!
Me experienced enough to know that no point in wasting time with this 2nd fellow turn to the 3rd one: “X road ge barthira”?
3rd driver: Simply shakes his head left to right & then right to left.
Me: “Yake”?
3rd driver: Does not respond & turns his face away!
Gawd, give me patience please!
Me to the 4th driver: “X road ge barthira”?
4th Driver: Despite me trying my best in Kanadda understands my accent, looks at me & says, “whokay maidam, but one & half rate”
Me: “yake one & half? It is 11 am right now”
4th driver: Smiles & starts reading his kanadda newspaper back!
Oh, I am getting late, I need to get an auto. Let me settle down for anything which this next guy asks.
Me to the 5th driver: “X road”
5th driver who was already observing me interacting with other fellows replies: “Ok, but medaam 40 Rs. Extra”.
From his accent I know he knows hindi
Me: Yake 40 Rs? Normal fare to X road will be hardly Rs. 55-60.
Driver ignores me completely & starts talking to another driver standing nearby.
Me: Ok, I will give you 25 rs. extra.
He quickly turned on his auto keys & said: “come in medaam”

I was anyways late by now, so I immediately jumped in desperate enough to reach the place asap. Finally I reached, the meter read Rs. 60 exactly. I took out 100 rs. note & asked him to take Rs. 85 ( 100 +25), he took the same & says “medaam no change”.
Me: “Arey, u already charging extra 25, give me 15 rs. back, I know u have change or get change from somewhere”
Driver very well knowing from my last phone call that I’m already late smiles in his typical way, “medaam change illa, u get change from somewhere & give me 85 rs.”. Bloody**** he very well knows that there is no place nearby from where I can get the change right now & I m getting LATE!
Frustrated I leave the auto by finally giving him that 100 rs. away!!!

Location, Mumbai: Few days back, I was out on a personal trip to Mumbai and was traveling by auto to some location:
Me: “Y road”?
1st driver starts the auto & turns his meter down. Wow, with a delight I jumped in the auto & we reach the destination in some time. The meter read Rs. 89. & I handover a 100 rs. note to him, he quickly returns me rs. 10 but is still rummaging in his pocket & small cash box. After collecting my bag & all, I get down. Auto guy with a very sorry face asks me, “madam 1 rs. change nahi hai, chalega kya”? Yeah I have lived in Mumbai for long but after all these years in Bangalore I was nothing less than SHOCKED at his reply. He was sorry for not returning 1 Rs.??? I immediately replied, “haan haan koi baat nahi”.

After finishing off my work, me needed to go back to the same place. I see a local black & yellow cab with door open.
Me: “Z road”?
Driver silent & looks at the door of his cab.
Me again: “Boss, Z road chaloge”?
Driver holds the door & me with all my Bangalore experiences assume that he is shutting the door. Me quickly started to walk away saying: “Arey bhaiya bol toh dete ki nahi jaoge”
Driver: “Arey madam baitho na, darwaza hi toh aur khol raha tha, aap pooch kyun rahe ho Z road, jab taxi nikali hai toh chalaunga hi nahi or jaha passenger jayega waha le hi jaunga na”.
I sit in the cab quickly with my eyes wide open…jaha passenger jayega waha le jaunga na! Oh wow, I think I had forgotten I was in Mumbai & not in Bangalore where auto guys don’t travel if there is traffic or heat or morning or night or…well this list of reasons can be endless actually.

I have lived in Mumbai for long & now living in Bangalore for last few years & I only know one thing about auto guys of these two places – “ Mumbai will always be Mumbai & Bangalore will always be Banaglore”!!! I love Bangalore but I do miss some of the things of Mumbai a lottttt!

Updates from Marketing Chit-Chat: 14th - 20th April'09

Posted this on Marketing Chit-Chat last week, would love to see you there :-)

  • Chance Pe Dance marketing: Launching a blog of none other than Bhajji at this moment is no doubt a great promotion strategy & this is what I really call a chance pe dance marketing strategy. Read More...

Rakhi ka Swayamvar - What next???

When I heard about the promo of this program, I really could not believe it! This sounded insane & crazy but then when I saw news channels airing Ms. Sawant in a sati-savitri avatar trying best to speak with her jhuki hui aankhein like a nayi naveli dulhan, I was nothing less than aghast! Now this has to be heights of reality television…“sawayamvar” & that too of Rakhi Sawant live on television! This is totally weird & senseless & mad &…forget it, even if I will exhaust all synonyms of madness over here then too I don’t think I can justify how mad I think this act is!

NDTV Imagine is going to air this program titled “Rakhi ka Swayamvar” where Rakhi who is always in news for shocking reasons will be selecting her real life partner. The program will show the journey of Rakhi selecting & then finally marrying the selected winner in television. As per the official release, Fazila Allana from SOL Productions said, “We are very proud of Rakhi for taking such a bold decision and we hope that she will find happiness at the end of the show”. Proud of Rakhi for taking such a BOLD decision? I think these producers are done with all normal reasons of feeling proud about their programs that they are now resorting to such weird concepts. Well, is there anybody apart from Rakhi Sawant who could have decided to get married like this? I’m not sure!

Like most of the Indian viewers, even I’m really fed up of infinite number of reality shows & the inevitable crying of participants in each and every such show. The bitterness, the emotional drama, the bitching, the fighting amongst judges…gawwd! Every show comes up with some new nuisance but a nuisance as big as this is really unbelievable. After being tired of singing, dancing, bitching, joking & stunting, now participants are actually willing to compete for MARRYING Rakhi Sawant. How I wish this is just a game or some publicity stunt by channel guys and not some real marriage show. And if it is real, then what next??? So, shall we wait for some best “first night” or “love-making” reality show or maybe…ah I think I should leave it here. I’m wondering where all this is heading to?

Updates from Marketing Chit-Chat: 6th - 13th Apr'09

Posted the following posts on Marketing Chit-Chat. Would love to see your comments there:

  • Communicating or Spamming: Over communication esp. through certain media can really KILL your campaign. Read More...

A chain of thoughts

A chain of thoughts which keeps haunting my mind, same sequence, same intensity, that trail of thought which just can’t get out of my mind:

That one call on 5th evening…my generally optimistic nature first thinking it’s some hoax call…me continuing with my work never expecting that second call…second call from police…that absolute shock…another call from my mother…frozen mind & body…telling some false story to my mom & asking her to rush to Delhi…we running to airport…& then calls & calls & calls…last flight to Delhi missed & we back to home…that inexplicable state…my yowls, my tears, my wailing, my banging of head…but still a faint hope that the news is not true…another reassurance call from my brother in law who reached the spot & confirmed the news…that horror on the realization of the truth…that nightmare of waiting for the next early morning flight…that flight to Delhi which never seemed to end…reaching Delhi finally…meeting my mother…her hope with which she was praying whole night for Kishu to be out of ICU, totally unaware that Kishu actually never reached ICU…he died on the spot itself...that moment when I had to slowly tell her that he is no more…ohhhh why I only had do this…her sudden roar…her eyes…her reactions…& then her silence…me meeting Kishu in morgue…his body in that cold room…in that drawer…on that ice…his face…his closed eyes…that touch which was as cold as ice…realization of the word “kishu’s death”…still an expectation that he will get up & say “Dids” the way he always used to say with a big smile on his face…but no smile, no voice, no reaction…just an icy cold silence…he again being pushed & locked back into that drawer…the whole formalities of taking his body back to our home town…at the airport realization of this big change in our life by finding that Kishu’s body is going in a coffin along with luggage while we are sitting in flight…he could not go with us, he was no more a living passenger…he was packed in a box…reaching our home town…meeting the relatives…his body lying on the same verandah where we all had grown up playing & fighting with each other…that white sheet…flowers on him…people touching his feet…he was no more my younger crazy brother…people treating him like god…but his face still looking as if he will open his eyes & says “Dids”…mom totally out of scene from all this till now…nobody having the courage to ask her to see all this…me getting torn apart internally but still doing all rituals on behalf of mom…convincing mom to come & bid him a final goodbye…that final goodbye which I myself never wanted to bid…fainting of mom after seeing Kishu’s body on floor…me shouting from deep within requesting people to not take him away…me howling…me wailing…me holding his body…but still they took him away…away & far away! So far that he could never come back from there again…

And then either an internal voice or a voice from somebody around me will tell, “Kanu stop thinking, you need to get over this”…Yes, I know I need to get over my thoughts but can I? All I have learnt in last 9 weeks is that there are certain thoughts & pain which you can never get over with…NEVER! You just somehow learn to live with it…live or survive not sure, but you learn to bear that pain either for yours or for your closed one’s sake!

It’s yet another Thursday today…one more week has passed…

Confessions of a Shopaholic: The Book

Well, I think a must read book for women who enjoy reading chick-lit or light flicks :-). And here is why:
  • If you are a female born with normal genes & hormones, I will assume you have the code of “I love shopping” embedded somewhere within your DNA. Yeah, I know the level of coding can actually vary from women to women but it’s definitely there in all the women at least I know since childhood. And if you are one of those normal women with this “shopping” thing in your DNA, you’ll definitely like this book or rather I shall say you’ll love this book!
  • This book is very light, witty & really a fun read.
  • The journey of main protagonist “Rebecca Bloomwood” whose life is in a mess because of her obsession towards shopping is interesting enough to hold your attention till the end of the book. Not even once while reading I felt bored of it.
  • I have not watched the movie yet but the writing style of the book is so vivid that you actually feel you are watching a movie.
  • It definitely leaves you a smile on your face & it’s one of those books which you would like to finish asap.
So, next time when you’re looking for a light casual read, do try it out please.

Other details of the book:
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Price: Rs. 261/- (I bought in from landmark 2 weeks back)
Special Note: Statutory Warning - This book is a strict NO for men! I‘m sure most of the men would not like to try anything which is even remotely related to shopping :-)

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