Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Until Death Do Us Part... Is it so?

My colleague mentioned about the German politician who has proposed an "expiration date" of 7 years to marriage. Uhh?

This information started to churn my mind. With time, the way of life and living has changed - for better or worse is an individual's perception. Few decades ago, a person would never tender a resignation letter unless caused by some adverse circumstances. People used to work for the same company till they retire and would be very loyal to the company. "Aapka namak khaya hai, sahib"(I earned my food because of you .. Not the exact translation). I remember in Japan, the son could get the position of his father in the same company. This was because both the employee and employer cared for each other's welfare.

Now times have changed. People switch jobs like they change clothes. With all the corporate games, loyalty has taken a back seat. More people have started working, more ideas are pouring in and the rules have changed. We have become more self oriented in figuring out what is best for us. These thoughts have definitely affected our personal relationships as well. Gone are the days when a love affair in a hindi movie was depicted by just exchange of eye glances. Movies always reflect the reality of life and we can see our lives are indeed changing. Everything now is a deal, the winner bags the best deal. We look for expiration date in all the stuff we buy. But should that be extended to marriage as well? Only time would tell...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Searching, Searching

Mornings are becoming chillier now. H has to wear a light jacket while catching the train to work. Since, me and kids start a little late, we are still giving our winter clothes some rest. Today morning , H asked me if I had seen his green light jacket. I told him I did see him wearing it when he came home yesterday. Last evening, I had to go out. So, as soon as H returned from work, I was more than happy to hand over the kids' charge to him and rush out. I saw him for fractions of seconds while he was giving me directions on how to reach to my destination. Since he is always in a hurry in the mornings , I am the one who has to search for anything he is looking for. To be honest, this is not the first thing I like to do to start my day. Anyways, I go on a jacket-search and could not find it anywhere in the house. So, I tell him maybe he lost it while taking the kids out yesterday evening. I also give him my piece of mind of how he could keep it in the closet and spare me this misery of searching. After dropping the kids, I came to my work. When I opened my email, I saw one from H saying that the jacket was lying on his office chair and wondered how I saw him wearing it yesterday evening. Well, hmm (blushing).

I want to Help but all I feel is helpless....

Yesterday, I read news about a 70 year lady in Utah being arrested because of not watering her lawn!
I understand we need to maintain our home and ourselves but isn't this too extreme? She is old and instead of society helping her, it is sending her to jail.

Time and again things like this happen which just leaves us helpless. Few months back, I was talking to a childhood friend of mine. She mentioned she was a victim of identity theft. Someone has made a huge transaction in her credit card. She asked the credit card company to stop the transaction but because of some stupid policy, they could not do so. The culprit has bought stuff in Target but could not get all the consignment the same day. Somehow, my friend got a call from Target saying the rest of the consignment is available for pickup next day. She immediately called up the cops and said there is a possibility of knowing the culprit if he ever turns up. After a long wait and innumerable phone transfers, she was told that what got stolen was her identity and not some concrete stuff. So they cannot help!

Last year, I had visited my gynaecologist for the regular pregnancy visit. A young lady entered the clinic and sat next to me. After some time, we started talking and I learnt that she was new the place. Hers was a pregnancy which needed lot of attention in early stage. She had medical insurance but there were some issues which the insurance company was taking just too long to resolve. Because of this, none of the doctors were ready to see her. She had some problems that day and took a cab to see my gynaecologist. She was just hoping that the doc would check her as she really needed some medical attention. I felt sorry for her. But as it turned out, the doc refused to see her because of all the insurance complications. She did not heed to the fact that the lady herself needed medical attention. I do understand that insurance policies are complex and no one wants to get tangled in all these. But once in a while when a genuine case comes by, can't we go beyond and help them out? I offered her to drop her home and all I could do was pray for her, hoping her condition would improve.

I thoroughly approve of process and procedures. But what use are these when they cannot solve simple human problems. An old lady is being arrested for a reason beyond a common man's comprehension while there are thugs roaming freely on the road. Isn't it getting too extreme now?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Searching for ...

Looking for wisdom
To enlighten my life

Looking for love
To fill my heart

Looking for tranquility
To rest my mind

Looking for freedom
To get away from boredom

Looking for the peace
To put my soul at ease

Looking for acceptance
To drive away any pretense

My mind keeps searching
For answers and preachings

For it is known
That there is no beginning and no end

That all in all
we are just brick on a wall.

Nature - The artist beyond compare

It is a known fact that nature is the best artist. Time and again in different parts of the world,it has made a masterpiece which a human can only awe with wonder and admiration. I recently visited one of the masterpieces which was created in 6 million years and still going on.

GrandCanyon - a master piece carved entirely by Colorado river is breathtaking. The canyon was created as the river and its tributaries cut through the layers of rock.

The canyon is overwhelming in size. There are only two ways of exploring it and both would take couple of days. One is walking around the canyon which is approx 275 miles long and the other is a very interesting trek down to the river bed of Colorado river. We did a little trek around the canyon.

We went to Yavapai point to see the sunset and I believe Hopi point to see the sunrise.

Over the years, Sun has without fail risen every day radiating the whole canyon into a colorful landscape. Its intricate and kaleidoscopic landscape is a blissful treat to watch. The quite and serene background leaves you calm and peaceful.

In travel channel, I saw another masterpiece by Colorado River - Canyonlands National Park near Utah. I am attaching an image I found in net while looking for this park and I am certain where your next vacation destination is going to be:

Monday, September 10, 2007

Five minutes

It is said the first thing that comes to our mind when we wake up defines our day. Mine doesn't seem like it. The first thing that comes to my mind ever since I can remember , is whether I can sleep for 5 more minutes. As a child, I used to dream that when science advances to an extent that humans start living in another planets , I would opt for Pluto because 5 min there would definitely be couple of days in earth . The result, they stopped recognizing pluto as a planet! One of various instances of how my dreams get realised.

As a kid, it was my dad's job to wake me up. He used to be very good in it which definitely did not work in my favor. In winters when my mom called me few times to wake me up, I would just go deeper into my comforter. Thats when my dad would take over. He would just slid next to me in my bed. That itself would be a big jolt to rise me from slumber. Then he would start talking about all the cartoon characters/serial characters I watched. He would try to ask me about their next move in their respective story plots. If I did not respond, he would nudge to make me speak up. All this would irritate me and the goal would be achived. I would be wide awake, ready to hop off my bed. My dad, as a prize, would doze off for couple of minutes in my warm bed. What intrigued me always was he never used to see any of the serials/cartoons I watched. Still he would know the story and the characters !

Fast forward to present. I am in nice slumber when the alarm clock goes off on a sunday morning. This irritates H as he does not like alarm clocks on sunday. More so, if he is the one who has to turn it off. I know I have a huge list of chores to do but suddenly none of them seem important. I can hear my 4 year old and 1 year old stir in their beds. I can easily put my 4 year old back to sleep for 5 more minutes. She can understand how precious these moments of rest can be. My 1 year old is a different story. He is fully awake the minute his eyes open. He comes from his crib and onto my bed. I try hard to make him sleep for couple more minutes but he is hellbent. He finally comes to my face and with his tiny fingers open my eyes. It's nice to see his cherubic face first thing in the morning but I wouldn't have mind to see it 5 minutes later. Anyways I am fully awake now , exactly 2 hours after the alarm went off.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Good Old Days

One thing I really miss is my college days - the freedom, the casualness, the hopes and the dreams. I made some of my best friends in college. I used to love their company and we still get high when we hang out together. I remember the nights when me, A, I , M were up to "finish off our assignments" but ended up chatting about our lives, ideas and dreams. These were the golden times rare to re-live.

Last week me and V were able to re-live some memory of our younger days. After one nice, long tiring day, both our kids and dear hubbies were sleeping softly and quietly in their beds. I don't think hubbies were sleeping quitely but we were too excited to even take notice of that. V had got two movies to watch during the week. We tiptoed downstairs , got some munchkins, hopped onto the couch , made ourselves comfortable and switched on the DVD to watch Dhoom 2. We enjoyed commenting , dancing , singing along with the Ash and Hrithik. It was 11:30 pm by the time the movie ended and we both looked at each other with red shot sleepy eyes . We had had a hectic day and had some more chores to finish up the next day. But we realised that we would never get this precious time easily. So, I happily got out , made tea for both of us. We drank it to drive away Mother sleep and inserted "Mr & Mrs Iyer" into the DVD player :)

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Dear Sir/Madam

I realised yesterday was Sept 5 . This day is celebrated in India as Teacher's day. I remember we used to have a small celebration in school. When we were in high school, we would buys gifts for all our teachers. This was stopped when we went to Class 12. The school came up with a policy of not to buy gifts to teachers but we could show our appreciation in form of cards/flowers. Though all the teachers who have taught me have shaped me into what I am , I am recollecting few of them today:

Ms Chokandi: She was my first teacher when I was in nursery. She was a terror. I used to be so afraid of her that I used to come up with excuses to miss my school. To be very honest, a teacher for atleast Kindergarten should be loving and caring.

Ms Usha: She taught me in Class 1. She was a very sweet person and loved me a lot. I was thrilled when she became our class teacher.

Ms Usha: Incidently I had another teacher by the same name when I changed school during my primary school. She was a nice teacher and used to teach almost all the subjects. I have fond memories of her. In a final exam for Social Studies, I scored full. She was so thrilled to inform me. But I replied that it is not possible as I had left a question(which was for 1 point). She said she would still give me full score because of honesty. This incident had a lasting impact on me.

Mr Radhakrishnan : He taught us for a very short time , couple of months. But he was one of the best Science and Math teacher. He aroused our curiosity for rational thinking. We actually cried when he left our school.

Ms Raman : She was our Hindi teacher - nice and loving person. She used to borrow my favourite ink pen for correcting papers. Somehow she used to love the pen as much as I did. After I finished my primary school, I actually gave her the pen. It was a tough decision for a small girl. But I felt it less painful when she smiled and gave me a warm hug.

Mr Ramaswamy: Our math teacher. I used to be good in math and all my friends used to tease me with him as it was quite apparent he liked me. I used to be annoyed and upset with my friends. Looking back now, it gives me a hearty laugh. Subha, if you read this you are gonna laugh your heart out.

Ms Madhavan : Our Chemistry teacher in middle school. She was tall and very strict . It used to give us pleasure to tease her. She used to get annoyed with almost each one of us. She had a habit of talking indirectly that we could never get what is she scolding us for. I remember when once a volley ball hit her head , she hid that in the library. We had our own fun time retrieving it. Even though she gave us tough times, she made our middle school years eventful.

Ms Padma: Our Physics teacher. She was a nice teacher with a heavy mallu accent. Incidently she was also a close friend of Ms Madhavan. So annoying her also meant facing Ms M's wrath.

Ms Uma : Our history teacher with a great dressing sense. She had a good command on her subject . She made history very interesting and we used to look forward to see the beautiful sarees she would wear to our class.

Ms Pillai: Our Biology teacher. She had an unfortunate accident due to which she lost her tears. Her class used to be entertaining mainly because of her heavy mallu accent and also she lost no time in picking up student's fault. Almost all of us has faced her anger. She was a feminist. Along with biology, she would also tell us about rights of woman. When we learnt that she has three girls - Tara, Meera, Hira, one of the boys commented "Good she did not have a fourth girl, else her name would be Jeera". :)

Ms Mythili: Our Geography Teacher. Along with geography, she used to be involved in all the cultural activities in school. We had a great time singing and dancing with her.

Ms Aggarwal: Our chemistry teacher in high school. She was a good teacher and a good motivator. I still remember the day I went to meet her after our board exams. There was few days left before the engineering entrance exams. She gave me a a nice motivating talk and pepped me up.

Ms Usha: Our math teacher in high school. A very balanced person with a good command of her subject. Apart from math problems, I had few nice converstaions regarding life and career in general.

Mr Natarajan: Our school principal. Even though he never taught us, I always used to admire his personality and his command of English. Incidently, he was also my mom's teacher and she was his pet student. It was a great honor for me when I gave an extempore speech on behalf of students on his farewell day.

Mr VP Manchanda: Revered teacher with a high command of his subject. When I used to go to college, the traffic in Delhi used to be horrendous. Once he had seen us changing buses in a traffic signal instead of a regular bustop. The next day, he gave us a lecture on our promised future and said life is more precious and we should not risk it to atleast Delhi traffic ways.

Mr VK: A teacher with a great sense of humor. He would actually time the practicals in a way that I do not miss my University bus to get back home.

Mr NK : Arc is going to laugh at this. A teacher whom me and Arc dreaded but we have to admit, his are the only subjects that we can still recall without glancing into a book. Also the fact the night outs we made to complete his projects made our friendhip stronger if nothing else.

Mr AJ: A sweet nice teacher on whom both me and Arc had a tiny miny crush. We used to get excited by the the fact that his initials were a combination of our first names (A and J.. crazy, right. I agree)

Mr SKM: He taught us Computer Architecture and few other subjects. One of the professors, whose class we would bunk and whose assignment we would delay without any hesitation.

Mr Bhattacharya: Our Electronics prof with a heavy bong accent. We would bunk his class and go around the univ eating bhel puri et all. Apart from teaching us, he would also tell intersting stories.

Mr Aggarwal: He was actually an adhoc teacher for teaching us Parallel Computing. Once we were deciding date and syllabus for our exam. When he mentioned the syllabus to be covered, Arc commented that it was too much as we also had other projects/ subjects to work on. He looked at her and commented - I never see you in class but you are the only one to object. We had a hearty laugh and till date tease Arc on this.

Mr Haimovich: He took my first class in this land of opportunity. Even though he never interacted with students much, I have respect for his command on one of the most interesting and captivating subject - Wireless Communications.

Mr Jacob: Revered elderly gentleman who taught us Electrical Communications. Once his TA entered our class and handed out a surprise quiz. We all fared badly. I felt so horrible that I went to speak to the Prof regarding my test. He laughed it off saying it was not even counted towards the grade. He just wanted to shock us :)

Mr Boris: Network Topology Professor, who would talk less about networks in communication and more about networks in life. His class used to be very interesting featuring stories he learnt from his life.

Ms Sirin Tekinay: My idol. A very smart, talented and intelligent professor of Wireless Communication. I would love to be in her class any day at any time of my life.

I should not forget the teachers at my home:

My mom: If I can even be half successful as her , I would be more than happy.

My brother: I learnt more math and physics from him than any one else. I attribute all my scietific reasoning to him.

My dad: In school, it was my mom and brother who made sure I score well. But I do remember the words of wisdom he has imparted to me during my various phases life. He would always be an inspiration to me. I remember an advertisement of Boost that used to come when I was a kid " My daddy strongest".

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Dream on...

Back from Vacation
Was fun and good relaxation

Mind in state of happiness
Brimming with ideas and creativeness

Want to jot these thoughts with clarity
In a hope that they attain reality

There seems to be new hope
In my life, other than just to cope

A new direction
All it needs is a persistent action

A day will come
When I realise my dream

To contribute to this ocean of humanity
My two cents of wisdom and some sanity.

To evolve or not...