27 August 2018

Floods in Kerala

Indian news has been full of the floods in Kerala. It has been horrendous.  I personally was not affected because where I live is not very near to a river.  But all around my town, as well as up and down Kerala, the floods have caused devastation as I am sure many will know.  It has been one of the worst floods in many years, mainly because the state of Kerala was affected from North to South and the water was high and powerful. 
But here I do not want to go over many of the stories already out there.  I just want to admire the youngsters from our state.  The young people have gone out of their way to help in every which way they can, organising food, rescues, helping out at camps, now helping in cleaning up, and youngsters from all walks of life.  Appreciation has been given to our fisher folk, who really have been heroes and to the Armed Forces.  But here I want to express my appreciation for the very many youngsters who went all out to help whoever they could.  Kudos to you young people.  With such people around, the future of our state looks great!

03 August 2018

Exciting Day!

Today I met up with my best friend from school after maybe 30 years.  She lives in Calcutta and I live far away in Kerala.  I met her last around 30 years ago, on a trip to Calcutta, but that was so briefly.  
This time she was here in Kerala with family and friends doing a tourist trip of the hills and backwaters.  Thanks to Facebook (occasionally some of the good things that come out of Facebook!) we were in touch with each other and hence the chance to meet.  We spent a lovely afternoon together in the middle of their trip and it really was wonderful.  After all, both of us passed out of school in 1966--52 years ago!!!  
We are both old and gray, but I think for both of us--for a little while at least--the years slipped away.  Lovely memories, great day.
Only--we forgot to take any photographs!

01 July 2018

A whirlwind two weeks

My son and family had come here for just two weeks and it went by so fast, I can't even believe that they came and left!  But anyway at least we got them for 2 weeks.
I am sure though that they are glad to get back home as they have been out of their house for over 3 weeks, as they had a stop in Aspen, Colorado on the way here.
I miss them but it is a nice thought that we can visit them next year.

01 June 2018

A rambling post

I was thinking about all the mental baggage we carry in our lives and how that baggage gets carried into our parenting, which then affects the next generation.  Even when we think that we are not being like our parents, the very rejection of something my parent did is in itself a mental baggage I pass on. Every generation thinks "I won't be like my parents in such and such;  I'll never do that".  That is natural--a wish for every generation to 'improve' on the previous one. But the interesting fact is that your child may not see this different behaviour as an 'improvement'. 
We reach a certain age I think, before we are able to dispassionately be aware of the emotional baggage we carry and for many women, I think, it comes after our children are well past the toddler stage, because, while our children are very young, parenting is so much on auto pilot, either with ideas automatically taken from a parent figure of from parenting books and we don't have the time to really think how the child interprets our actions.  And so, even if we think we do not pass on emotional baggage it happens.  So I guess none of us need to dis ourselves on that.  Most of us do the best we can and with love.

29 April 2018

Busy April

This month has been kind of busy.
It was my husband's 70th birthday and he wanted a party.  As his family is large, there were almost 70 guests for the party.  My daughter did all the organising of the programme for the party and I must say my husband enjoyed it thoroughly.  There were speeches all round but what made him especially happy was a speech by his eldest grandson(almost 13) and another by a nephew; also, my daughter had asked people to contribute letters to her dad from his siblings, in-laws and any nieces/nephews who might want to add on too.  These she made into a little book and he was thrilled.
Now me, I know for my 70th birthday I want to be far away from here and spend a quiet day, with my children at the most.
The week after my husband's birthday was exciting for me as all my siblings & I got together.  As all my brothers (3 in all) are US citizens, it isn't often something like this happens.  We were all together only for 3 days but it was fun. 
Now there is a new little baby in the family too, a little baby girl.
So altogether it has been a busy and exciting April.  

13 February 2018

5 years but like yesterday.

Recently it was the 5th death anniversary of my son, but it still seems like yesterday that he left forever.  I have been missing him so much, more than usual, his music, his laughter, his poking fun, but most of all his ability to help anyone among those he knew, who he felt needed help, needed boosting, needed advice, or just needed de-stressing.   Not to say I have spent the last 5 years mired in depression.  I and all of us in the family, have gone on with our lives, as though he was still here.  I can imagine his comments & remarks on so many incidents that happen each day. 
My husband & I recently heard, on BBC, a reading from the book 'Trumpet' by Jackie Kay where death does not become an absence but a presence and it just so resonated. 
He was a big Star Wars fan.  Shine in the Force son.

26 January 2018

A weekend post

I have been cat-sitting my daughter's cat Tigger.  It has been fun. 
We had cats when I was growing up, when in Calcutta, for a while, mainly because we were given two Siamese cats who had been spayed and house trained my an expat American couple, when they moved back to the US.  Otherwise, growing up and post my marriage, we have mainly been dog people.  Not to say I dislike cats.  I am not a cat hater.   In fact, as I tell people, I am a mammal person.  I am not averse to trying out any mammal that can be tamed except maybe the big shrew like rats we get here sometimes.  I have looked after a squirrel, sundry dogs, cats, goats and helped in looking after cows.  I am pretty sure I would not mind a monkey, I talk to the mongooses I see occasionally around here!
Anyway it was fun cat -sitting Tigger, who is a most affectionate cat.  The first thing in the morning, when he sees me, (I can't have him sleep with me as I am pretty allergic to cat hair) is to run and then lie flat in front of me for a tummy rub and general stroking.  He's already purring by the time he lies near me.  He then waits for me to get my coffee and sit down, so that he gets more petting. 
I find this quite surprising because most cats don't come asking for petting like the dogs do.  He has 2 stuffed teddys, one of whom he especially loves and it is the greatest fun to see him playing with the teddy, kissing the teddy, rough housing with it and then hugging it.
My dogs are not let inside at all now, since he is in the house, and they are quite jealous, but also interested in this new character.  He sits and watches them from inside the house.  I think he would like to make friends, but they don't seem to take very kindly to that idea.
Anyway, tomorrow we take him back to my duaghter's place.  I will miss him I know.  But then I do have my doggies.