Rebeccus Farcis

Rebeccus Farcis means "Have Fun", in err.. the yet to be discovered Martian.

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The Art of Eating

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For someone who’s lived in a quite a few places in India, so much so that he is confused of his own identity, food has never been a problem. Anything certified vegetarian and edible was what he called food. Also, for someone who looks as if he’s been famished all his life, he always put it diplomatically ‘we eat to live’, read, eately barely enough to live.

Presumptions and firm beliefs of this order continued in his crazed mind until the final few days of his rather unhappily extended stay in Chennai. A few doubts started creeping in his mind when the once fine neighbour of his started growing along the 3 perpendicular axes, in not exactly the right proportions. The Y-axis (height) never grew more than an inch, however, the other two axes (waistline and tummy, for dummies) had swollen to the dimensions, justly comparable to those of a healthy baby elephant. ‘Pizza’, was what the response he received, for his polite inquiries. ‘Pizza with cheese bust’, on further inquiry. Life then, still was, ‘we eat to live’, only, this one being a real jalsa for a life.

Domicile changed to Mumbai, three days into this place, all such beliefs were shattered. Apparently, food was something else. There was more to food than eating bits of it just to make keep a metabolic rate on the other side of a perpetual comatose sleep. Food was more than water. Water you drank to sustain life; and this life you spent eating. You ate four square meals a day, chomped royally on assorted snacks between these meals. And all of this was considered normal. Apparently, food habits across the nation differ, this was only one of them.

There are large swathes in the country, the populace of which subscribes to the thought that the honorable spud is the quintessence of life. At the going rate, can anticipate elections being fought and governments being toppled over the price of this dear tuber. Add it to the other lifeline, that silly spoilt milk suspension condensate they call paneer. Someone confiscate these two from the market, I can foresee a cataclysm much worse than the one a certain Andrew Strauss has been privileged to see in Bangalore.

Then there are people who would qualify to be the perfect antithesis of yours’ truly, a ‘pure non-vegetarian’. These folks have a small filter just behind their thyroids which effectively screens them from swallowing any food not remotely non-vegetarian. These true ‘carnivores’ marvel at the sustenance of the general public whom they classify as ‘herbivores’. I mean, ‘how can one live without meat?’. The styles differ. There is this set of population that swears by a certain tooth – the sweet one. They tend to prepare their food a little on the sweeter side. They tend to make this goo, slightly yellow in colour, thick, sauced with a few cut tomatoes, and jaggery 10 times quantity of tomatoes. Jaggery also finds a pride of place in their dining table, with half a kilo of it decorating each plate.

Another set of population practices the opposite. They tend to have a certain strange preparation akin to the dear gunpowder on their table. A general rule running across that region is that you add half a kilo green chillies, another half a kilo red chili powder for every 1 kilo food you prepare. That doesn’t suffice, so they consume their food chomping on a green chilli simultaneously. There is another set of junta that swears by the butter floating atop the paratha, one that swears by the ghee floating atop their bhati. Another by the fish they consume 17 times a day: during every meal, and between any two of these meals. Amid all this, one invariably tends to admire that one popuation that swears by satvik bhojan.

There are ones with scary food habits – an apple in the morning, one plaintain for lunch, a little herbal tea in the evening and perhaps a few oranges for dinner! The perennial ‘dietians’ – the ones who ‘breakfast like a king, lunch like a pauper and dine like a slave’ (this is a diet tip a dear friend tries very hard to follow). On the other end of the spectrum, you have the kings; the junkies, the folks who swear by junk, all senses of a firm diet plan evaporated on the sight of anything junk and can digest that trash thrice a day.

Sure Mumbai has been an eye-opener. There have been multiple attempts by the not-exactly-dishonorable roommate and neighbours of dragging this blessed soul into this magical world of eating – only, they’ve never quite managed to.

P.S. The above words are the rumblings of a deeply frustrated heart, one that’s been beating faster by the day, these past few days, longing for that one food that it believes will satiate its soul. Read, mom’s food.

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Written by Srinivas

March 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Chicken Hawaiian Pizza

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It was a rainy day! Thick black clouds thundered from the heavens. Rain had stopped, but there was a wonderful breeze blowing from the Bay of Bengal. Not to miss out on any such wonderful moments, I took a chair up onto the terrace… and got busy flipping the pages of John Grisham!I must’ve read a little over 10 pages when I heard footsteps approaching me!
Here was Kaushik, dressed in his best Levis wear, magnificent looking Reebok shoes and a Ray-ban sunglasses added to it. Hair all gelled to perfection, Kaushik, for the first time since I’d seen him back in school… looked a dude! There was one small hitch though! He didnt look his usual “I dont give a damn to this world” self!
“Something wrong?”, I couldnt help asking him!
“I am meeting Priya today!” The excitement in his voice was quite unmistakable.
“In Chennai?? Dude.. u never told me she is in Chennai”, I couldn’t forgive this guy!
“Abey.. aise mat bol! Teri bhabhi lagti hai woh!”…. How many times have I heard this line! Probably all through me college life.. atleast the latter half!

It was towards the end of 2nd yr that we saw Priya… err.. Kaushik saw Priya! She was the cream of his eyes then on! She was from the IT dept.. we were the rocking Chem Engg…. Classrooms far away! But our dear Kaushik would do anything to catch even the tiniest glimpse of her! One fine day, he walked up to me:
“Srini, what do you think of Priya?”
“Well.. I’m not allowed to think of her, so why are you asking this”.
“Err.. its like I want you to befriend her and then introduce her to me!”.. I being the more-famous guy would be able to somehow get to her was his logic!
I never did! If not for that eventful 3rd year when we hosted the farewell for our seniors together, I would’ve never talked to Priya! But I never introduced Kaushik to this girl!
5 in the evening! Kaushik had to go! First date! With the girl of his dreams! In a land so distant! Oh Boy, was Kaushik tensed! Even in this pleasant weather, I could sweat poring down his face. Few calming words, few encouraging ones… I bade him a big bye! Off he rode towards that wonderful place.. Pizza Corner Adayar! (He had, in very strong words ordered me to stay off that place that evening… thats how I know the address! ;-))

And I swirled back to my memories! Another of his antics!
Another day he came to me: “Dude, you think she is a veggie?”
“Never asked her!”, my off-handed reply.
“Dude.. pl…”, Kaushik pestering me here!
Two days later when he asked me this again.. another off-handed reply from me! “Yes buddy, she is a veggie.. and know what.. she hates non-veggies, badly!” Little did I know this would change one man’s life!
Then on, I’d got company! Until then I was the only veggie in the gang.. now Kaushik joined me! Tremendous change I must say.. from a pure-non-vegetarian (yes the very same who eats meat thrice a day) to a pure-vegetarian. Every restaurant that we went, for every dish he ate.. he had one question ready at hand, “Is this vegetarian”. So funny he looked that probably every waiter at Hotel Paradise would come to him with the remark… “Sir, yeh vegetarian hai”. But Kaushik being Kaushik, never would he mind!

That night he came home! Now that I’ve known Kaushik, quite well.. for over 10 yrs now… I could figure out something wrong in his face! First date failed??? She rejected him??? Or worse she slapped him and walked off?? I was pretty sure he would propose today!
“Hey dude, how was ur date?”
“Good man!”, Kaushik lost in his own world now!
“You proposed?”
“Yes”
“What did she say?”
“She accepted!”
Party time! Girl of his dreams! Was ready for him! But why is he so sad????
My inquisitions get the better of me!
“She accepted! Then its party time mate! What on earth are you sad for??”
“Srini, you remember how much I struggled for her! How much I gave up for her!”
“Yes I do”
“You remember how I stopped eating meat all for her. You know that I haven’t eaten that for 2 yrs now”
“Yes man… but what happened today?”
“She ordered Chicken Hawaiian pizza!” Lolz, I was in splits, laughing till my stomach burst!

That day on, I’ve got a Z+ security cover for myself! Lest there be any security violation and I be assassinated! I haven’t found my girl, and don’t intend to die till I get her!

Written by Srinivas

June 28, 2010 at 7:18 pm

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For me, its all a mystery.

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There’s some sound outside. I can hear the birds twitter. Its dark no more! Across my eyelids – its bright and pink. Probably its morning already. I can hear someone shouting at me. Oh – its my wife. Wonder what she’s shouting. She’s helping me up by my shoulder- Oh! I have to get up. But get up and do what?
She’s taking me somewhere! Oh! The bathroom. I must take a bath. OK. Now 2 idlis here for me. What do they taste like? I don’t know! What do I know? In a way – nothing.
I sit in my verandah. There’s a small table here – newspapers on it! But what do i read? I better put them back! I sit and do the thing I do best – stare at the skies. My wife keeps shouting at me all day- wonder what she’s got to shout! Its all a mystery for me!
Its getting hot now. I am sweating. My wife I think, comes in again – shouting of course.
“If its so hot, why don’t you switch on the fan?”. Why does she have to shout so loud? Can’t I hear?
“Ya. The fan.”, I reply.
“Switch it on”, she’s making some gestures also now!
“But, but, how do you switch it on?”.
How do you? Its all a mystery to me!
—————————————————————————————————————————————————————
Here comes someone. Why is he smiling at me? He’s saying something- What?
“Ajja, recognized me?”, now why is HE shouting?
“Yes, of course!”. Ah! Why wouldn’t I recognize him.
“Wow Ajja. What’s my name?”, he’s so happy.
“What??”. What is his name? And who is he?
“Ok ajja. No problem. I am Shrinivasa! Now you recognize me?”.
Who is Shrinivasa? I wonder.
“Anyways ajja, I came to read the papers.”
Ok… read.
He must’ve finished reading the papers.
“Ajja, time for lunch.”
“Ok. 2 min. I’ll get ready”.
“Not necessary ajja. You can come like this.”
“No you wait. 2 min”.
I go in to get ready. My white shirt, my dhoti, comb my hair, my kumkum bottu. That should do it.
“Ok. Lets go”.
He leads me indoors to the kitchen!
——————————————————————————————————————————————————————–
Soon it’ll be sunset, soon it’ll be night.
Soon they’ll ask me to have my dinnner. Soon they’ll put me to bed.
Soon there’ll be another sleepless night, soon there’ll be another dreamless night.
Soon there’ll be another day, just another day in my life.
Day or night, its all a mystery!
————————————————————————————————————————————
This is, partially, what a day in my grand-uncle’s life might look like. The hands that once passionately described us the tales of the Bhishmas and the Arjunas, the Sugrivas and the Hanumans, today tremble and reach for the grandkids for support. The once head-Master today hardly recognizes anyone but a precious few!
Alzheimer’s has taken its toll on him.
P.S. “Ajja” = Grandpa in kannada.

Written by Srinivas

June 28, 2010 at 7:15 pm

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Joie de vivre

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Just 200m more“, I huff and puff along the track. I have to push myself. Turn back the clock 3 yrs, I would have run 3km without breaking a sweat off my brow, now, I struggle for a mile. I stop. I’m short by 97m, says my watch – alas, it doesn’t count my pulse.
The sun rises from beyond this sea, sets behind the mountains there. A small arc of something bright orange lights the west, dark clouds on the east provide a contrast. I settle down in the sands and stare at the clouds; Ah! The breeze.
The waves – the large white foamy things that come from nowhere and drop at your feet. God must be a child – it must be a pleasure to send your winds to pick up a bucketful of water and drop it elsewhere. Most definitely, it must be a pleasure to gently blow the hair of this pretty girl in pink.
Mummy”, she runs in delight. Words can’t express the joy of a toddler.
I turn around. Sun might have disappeared now, not his rays. A faint glow persists beyond those hills, thin golden rays streak across the sky.
A bright flash from somewhere. Someone’s taking photographs. Er no. It must be Him. He holds a camera somewhere, He’s stationed his flash amidst these clouds. As a child I was taught to smile for a snap, why change habits now? I smile at the clouds.
Solitude and seclusion are man’s best friends. Solitude and seclusion are, not only man’s, best friends. I realize now. He must’ve dropped from the skies, or swam from across this ocean, or he came from somewhere close to my own home: why does it matter? I’m not particularly fond of them, but, this one is admirable. Presently, he has decided to pursue the waves. Fascinating.

A gentle vibration inside my pockets, Keerthi remembers me.
Heyy, wassup koos?”, her call is always a delight.
Your story baby, hwz your weekend going?
Keerthi, in this disposition of hers, is the most charming female on this planet. Have I loved anyone so much? Hmmm.. tough question. Yes, I would answer, I have, someone else.
Am lonely yar. At the beach now, watching His Highness jump over the waves.” – We confide in the Keerthis, don’t we.
Oh dear, why didn’t you just call me? Ok, look, I’ll be there in 15 min, wait for me.” Why wouldn’t I?
His second flash.
Meanwhile, the pretty one in pink (lets call her Pinky) has decided to explore the waves herself. The difficult endeavour of scaling down this gentle slope has proven to be a major hurdle for her tiny legs. Nature seeks the more obvious option, she stumbles, and rolls down. Is it natural for a kid to cry out to the mother? Yes, perhaps. Is it natural for a kid to shed tears when she tumbles down? I don’t know. I don’t see any tears, the waves have washed them all.
His Highness Tommy the Handsome, the cynosure of my eyes has discovered something. So long, he was jumping over the waves; the ones he couldn’t scale, he let them wash his blessed soul. In due season, he encountered a crab, it disappeared under the wet sands. He dug the sands, found a shell. He tried again,failed again. When this pursuit failed, the remarkably intelligent His Highness gave up. He looked up to see someone observing him intently. Enthused, His Highness decided to explore this person. He walks up to me, sniffs at my shirt, stares at my eyes. “Harmless”, His Highness’ verdict. Satiated, he settles down next to me.
Third flash from Heaven – this time its two of us posing for His snap, two long lost brothers. His Highness with his tongue hanging out, I hold mine in.

The handset rings again – Keerthi should be somewhere around.
Where are you?”, I love her voice.
I’m sitting next to a dog. Find me.
You don’t lose a faithful friend for a girl.
Here she comes. Does she know I love her in blue? Or, is it a mere coincidence she is in blue tonight.
Travesty; when the girl enters, the faithful friend leaves. His Highness is no exception. He runs away, perhaps, to find his girl.
That was His Highness Tommy the Handsome. Ran away, sigh.
Seems like you like his company more than mine”, isn’t Keerthi smart?
Hmmm, lemme think, has anyone seen an angel in black, walks on four legs and looks like a dog?”.
I don’t really know. But neither has anyone seen one in blue”, Keerthi can shut me up.
Fourth flash from heaven; and the fifth. Heaven seems to be fond of seeing us together.
Pinky is all wet now. A dear wave wanted to cuddle the child – it drenched the poor baby. Pinky now cleanses her eyes with her tears, well settled in her mother’s arms.
I love Keerthi when she lets her hair free. She has, tonight. My fingers slowly reach for it.
Get off me. I washed my hair just today. You’ll soil it”, irritated, or plain blushing?
Anyways, hard luck.
Heaven’s just broken loose – or, is it hell. Bright flashes from everywhere – a mellow wind to add to it. Humanity has disappeared from this shoreline – strange, Keerthi seems to notice it not.
Its going to rain dear, lets go” – I plead.
Just a minute more”, her eyes, her mind: two things I can’t comprehend, two things that mesmerize me.
She clasps my hand.
Now! Lets go.
Its raining.

Written by Srinivas

June 28, 2010 at 6:56 pm

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Shopping and assorted nonsense…

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For once, this one time, I GO HOME. It’s been so long that the watchman stopped me to pop up a singular question: “Shaab, kishke ghar jana hai?”. Shattered, am I? No – its a new watchman, no harm done.
“No.4, Chandrashekhar Bhat ji”, I beamed.
“Aap vishitor ho?”. Now, however uncivilized one is, one doesn’t retort to one such question, “Oye, mere baap ka ghar hai be”. I shrug, “Haan ji, vijitor. Srinivas, mobile no. …”.
“Jaiye shaab, first floor” – C’est la vie. I am a visitor taking directions to my own home. Sigh.

A bad start to the weekend does nothing to fade my excitement. Why am I excited? My cousin’s come home. Deepthi, after a lot of pestering, decided to look this way. Or, was it her husband? Anyways, Deepi and the BIL were home, I was only looking forward for their august company. I tend to learn a lot from them, a divine knowledge I usually gathered. The last time we met, the BIL had suggested, “When in a mall, don thy glasses. Turn your gaze towards any flying migratory flamingoes, nobody will know.” How true bhava! How true. We had our share of fun, roamed around the entire city. The statutory tourist spots and the not so statutory ones, the pani puris and the mirchis, the tank bunds and the IMAX, the golconda to the 12 noon at Salarjung, the Snow World to Durgam Cheruvu. We saw it all.

Hyderabad, they say (don’t ask me who says so, I know not), is a city of pearls, or, as mom puts it, you get good pearls for really good bargains. Now, what ‘good’ pearls are, or what a ‘good bargain’ is, I’ll have to ask mom again. Anyways, like I said you get good pearls, Deepthi was enticed into putting this quote to test. She needed companions, my mom and sis volunteered. She needed someone to foot the bill, she forced her husband to volunteer. They needed someone to fill up for the driver, they found me. Ahoy! Old City it was, to buy a set of pearls, the very same things similar to the ones you find the market for Rs.10. Wonder what’s the difference.

We drove, errr, I drove, the ladies behind me were conferring on weird things like embedding pearls with gold; the BIL next to me was looking somewhere, lost, frightened by every concept these ladies exploded with, still trying real hard to hold his fright. There are, he later confessed, a few things a newly wed man is forced to do, the most significant one being paying extortionist breed of bills, the ones that would’ve given one a fatal cardiac arrest in one’s sweet bachelorhood, with a smile.

Old City in Hyderabad is a remarkable place. It gets even more remarkable during Ramadan, particular on the eve of Id. It gets astonishing when you drive there in a four wheeler. Goofy once remarked that Thrissur Pooram is the most crowded event on Planet Earth. No way mate. Old City is. Trouble started once I crossed the Musi, didn’t end until 3 hours later – all this while I carefully compelled the sedan to crawl through a pluralistic mass of humanity, in some cases, moving metal scrap too – the other vehicles piloted by those unfortunate men and women behind the wheels, ones whose feminine relations have coerced them to come this far. Phew!! Mess it was. We escaped, still alive, just so, with just enough energy to drive a few hours more, no pearls in hand. It so ensued during that messy melee of 3 hours when I was very preoccupied in escaping alive without as much as a single scratch on the blessed body of the Maruti that, the very shop our ladies wanted to visit was so swarmed by a horde of similar minded men and women, that our ladies had a hitch that they wouldn’t discover their privacy of shopping there. They returned empty handed. In the end, a singularly challenging creep of 3 hours ended with my sis announcing proudly, “Anna, MG Roadinge hopa. Jagadamba Pearls”. Any instinct of throwing her into the river was annulled by the presence of the ever smiling mom. “Putta, MG Road”, she quipped.

Ammmmmmmmmaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

MG Road it was. Jagadamba Pearls it was. And real pearls it was. Pearls on the table, pearls in the runner, pearls in shelves, pearls in the mirror. White pearls, cream coloured pearls, pinkish pearls, blue coloured pearls, big pearls, small pearls, pearl necklaces, unset pearl, round pearls, oval pearls, flat pearls, what the heck pearls. If that didn’t suffice, there were more pearls in the almirah. The jeweller, of course, had no hesitation in pulling down the house to show us his collection, our ladies, of course, had no hesitation in browsing through the entirety of it.

The first hour was fairly enjoyable to the two ill-fated young men. The shop has a good management, they know how to keep the men pre-occupied. A nice flow of freshly made chilled lemon juice. Ladies tend to get a little busy opionioning on the beauty of these things in the showcase, we helped ourselves to quench our thirst.

The second hour was exhausted counting the population inside the shop. When we realized we had accounted for everyone inside, we moved out and started over our complex mathematical discussions over the per capita two-wheeler usage in India, which in turn led to our even more complex discussion on reducing the per capita fuel consumption the country. Wah bhava, you are a genius.

Two hours turned to three, mind frozen with calculations of a Leibnitzian order, we were running into the 17th minute of the fourth, just about when the two notably ingenuous minds started contemplating such things as banging our foreheads against those pearl filled shelves, Deepi emerged. “We’re done. Now pay up, we’ll wait near the car”.
The drive back home was pleasurable indeed. The ladies scrutinizing their purchase, myself driving – still without a scratch and the BIL silenty contemplating if it would’ve been better had he stayed back in Bangalore.

Written by Srinivas

June 28, 2010 at 6:45 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Mom sweet mom…

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It has been 2.5 long years since we had a time so long together, not since I had joined Cognizant. The last she had seen of me so well was the days prior to my shifting to Chennai and the days preceding the commencing of my small life there. This was mom’s chance to dote on her only son (well, she’s got a daughter too, but yeah, son as they say, is a son).

The day, as I see it usually starts with a small glance at the loving mom, first thing in the morning I see is her sweet little face, a little angry albeit. She swears she’d been crying hoarse to wake up the lazy slug (or so she feels I am) some 7 times now, although none of my senses picked it. Now that she’s come around with a miniature version of what would be called a public announcement system and presented the louder part of it an inch away from the exposed part of my right ear, a small penta amp of current’s been generated inside the ear drum, which in turn sent a signal of that order to the brain, which immediately processed the signal “Abey, its ur mom and she’s rather angry.” So, yeah, this is a gist of the sunrise, scientifically speaking, which ensued some 4 hours in the past tense. Strange eh, it dawns so early in some parts of the nation.

What follows is a repetitive process of pushing the lazy slug who’s been immersed in the day’s papers, more so, in the colourful parts of the days papers, to get to brush his horrible teeth. Breakfast, she says, had been ready some 7 o clock in the morning, just in time for dad, and that it is all cold now. Worse, she says, is that she is awfully hungry having arisen at 6 in the morn and that 3 hours of fasting does warrant a breakfast. The sweetest part of this entire episode is – mom doesn’t have her breakfast, not even if she’s starving, without me. Mom sweet mom.

The occasion between breakfast and lunch is crammed with business she considers rather serious from her side, and some serious business (I consider it very, very serious) she considers something bordering to tomfoolery from my side. I hardly get time with mom, and every opportunity isn’t one to be floundered. If mom’s in kitchen, follow her there, if she’s out in the backyard hanging the clothes to dry, follow her there, if mom’s before the dressing table dressing her hair, stand and admire her pretty tresses. Mom launches the washing machine, I spill all the water on the floor, she sets up the pressure cooker nice and fine, I somehow manage to blow it up, she sets a nice rasam boiling on the stove, I manage to blight that too.

Over endless rounds of chat, of gossip, of the neighbours in Hyderabad and their kinsmen (women of all forms are strictly forbidden, mom somehow manages to keep me away from all these ‘adult’ classfied material), of the neighbours here in Gokarna, of all the populace related to me by blood, of alll the ones not really related by blood, of all the water that flows into the Arabian sea, lunch somehow feels better than the ones I had in isolation with errr… Her afternoon siesta and my struggle to wake her up at 4, the silly fight over the remote, mom’s reluctant surrender of the remote so that I watch the likes of Suresh Raina take on the might of the mighty Zimbabweans, her appreciation of the fine game of women’s tennis (everytime pretty Ms. Ivanovic plays) and mens tennis (French Open this season), her giving me a patient ear to every nonsense I articulate about the technicalities of tennis (sometimes dad joins in too, its in the family you see), or the best ones spent lazing around next to mom, eyes wide open or gently closed.

The endless times she rants about the heat – the more endless times I convince her that this heat is far lesser than one that the sun blesses the land of Chennai with (obviously you can’t explain moms the intricacies of the centigrade scale, or, for that matter, fahrenheit), the endless times we sat on the beach and looked into the end of the sea trying to spot clouds that could shed some rain – only to find a clear sky laden with stars the count of which mom knew when I was a toddler, now she says she’s forgotten it all. Then one fine day when the clouds arrive, we move over to her magnificent pakoda and bajji and my lengthy tasting rounds royally seated on the kitchen platform. Her biggest fear is how she would dry the clothes once these rains set in, rains she says, would last an entirety of 3 months.

5 weeks it has been since I’ve come home to mom (and dad and sis of course, but their stories I’ve conveniently skipped). Wonder if I’d get such time again with mom, ever. Best part is, mom knows it too. Anyway, 2 more days it is to move over to Mumbai, until then… revel! Its been raining since morning, mom’s stepped into the kitchen ordering me to stay off for some time. A keen sense of smell would reveal that there is something cooking, goli baje I guess! Mom sweet mom, here I come.

Written by Srinivas

June 20, 2010 at 11:33 am

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Vacation and the wait for the monsoon…

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Purab se paschim, east to west; the Bay of Bengal to the Arabian sea, my romance with the sea continues.

Three weeks clock turned backwards, a certain smart (really?) young fellow left the shores of Chennai on a vacation he certainly felt he deserved. He’d worked really hard (bah!) for a few months he felt, culminating in a call for a management degree in NITIE, Mumbai. A real haggle for his resignation ensued:
Me: Errr… Anita, I’d like to resign.
Anita (HR): Oh really?
Me: Well… I’m so sorry to say this…
Anita: Hey…. wow.. we’d been thinking of what to do with you, now that you’ve offered to resign….
Me: Errr.. I mean…do I need to serve out my 2 months notice? I mean… I’m kinda struggling for time..
Anita: 2 months? You must be kidding me dude… I’ll have you out in 2 days.
That’s precisely how perhaps the most unproductive employee of his former employer was relieved. Next morning he was on his way home.

NITIE starts its classes only from the 15th of June. By the way, his domicile now no more stood as Hyderabad, his abode for the past 14 years. The address now ended something like Gokarna Town, North Canara dist, Karnataka state; in general parlance, 1 hour off Goa, along the coast. He knew he’d have a glorious 5 weeks at home. He’d had plentiful to do; NITIE admission work is legendarily bothersome; again, a cumulative sum of all of it wouldn’t expend more than TWO days. What’d he do for the rest of his 4 odd weeks? Sitting in this temple town all I can say is “Lord Mahabaleshwara knows best”.

His life has come full circle hence. Days in Chennai used to begin at 7 in the morning, rather the sun used get hot by then. Now its more like a 9am dawn, a day starting with mom’s sweet voice ringing in the ears – “You duffer, get up. Its 9 already”. Laze around for half an hour with the papers of the day when the temple bells would start ringing, resonating with them something that seems like the same temple bells amplified 100 times right into my ear was mom’s voice, “Putta, take your bath and come for breakfast. Your breakfast is going cold”. Some of these days are spent in appreciating the fierce fight that Suresh Raina and co. put up against Elton Chigumbura and his folk.

Dad’s now retired and works as a consultant off home. All his clientele visits him at home; when they see me at home, most of them usually pop up a very simple question: “How long are you on vacation son?”, and it does feel great to answer, “Am not on a vacation uncle, am jobless”. The rest of the day is spent watching TV. Whem mom comes around to watch the delectable tripe she calls daily soaps, we generally tend to switch on to the laptop and play Cricket of Medal of Honour. Evenings are spent on the beach, wherein I take a run along the sands of the Arabian sea, mom and dad walk along the same route. Sit on the rocks at Rama Theertha and watch the sundown and then leisurely walk back home.

Life has changed, dinner at 11pm has now changed to strict 9pm. Trash that we used to conjure and left with no choice but to eat the same has now changed, to the delicious mom made food, oppressive heat in the chennai summer has now changed to a less oppressive one at Gokarna. Three years almost in Chennai and the clock had changed a little, rains would be chanced only in november, Hyderabad was no better with its scanty rains. Its a tad different now with a full bloodied south west monsoon hitting this part of the world really hard. Giant frogs, spiders and other such inhabitants of the wild near home trying to sneak into the coziness indoors, sometimes scaring the living daylights out of us. Sometimes one bumps into a few peacocks in the wild, dad swears he chanced upon a panther once too (we reckon its a dog, he says its a panther). Nice plenty of snakes, a few pelicans on the rocks in the sea. Plenty of hills around – nice places to trek all day.

Should say, vacation is a wonderful thing to have. Specially one in which you don’t really have to switch off you mobile phone and still be answerable to nobody. Have a nice long vacation till the 15th of June, then on it is Chalo Mumbai. Meanwhile the monsoon should have fully set in and the 3 waterfalls around Gokarna should have some water. Just can’t wait to see that! 🙂

Written by Srinivas

June 20, 2010 at 11:29 am

Posted in Uncategorized