Wednesday, June 29, 2011

New Year

Our car moved through the morning mist. I adjusted the window glasses to feel the new year chill. Women rushed home along the road holding milk bottles in their hands. Most of them covered their heads with gamchhas to prevent another cold. I thought about the families welcoming another year with a cup of tea.

“Vavii..”, Aamy, my sister’s one-year old daughter was calling me. I shook her hands and looked outside at the people brushing their tooth infront of the houses. There was an uncomfortable silence inside the car. My brother-in-law, driving the vehicle took a wise decision to tune FM radio. My sister turned back and looked me and our mother. When she tried to talk about films and music, I too joined.

We had our tea from a small hotel. The shopkeeper’s little son peeped to see our beauty in pink. Aamy was busy with two glasses and her light tea.

We reached the shore by 7.30. Aamy pointed the sea and smiled. “Kadal”, I told. She babbled something. I was looking at the crowd there. We stepped down and walked towards them. Priests. They were guiding people to perform rituals. One welcomed us. He asked us to stand in front of him.

“We have the last remains with us”, brother told.

The man directed us to another who sat at the end of the row. A dark old man in white dress sat on an wooden plank. ‘Avani palaka’, I guessed. I had heard about the traditional seat made of wood of Jackfruit tree used as the priest’s seat during Hindu ceremonies.

A lighted Indian lamp, incense sticks, camphor and flowers were arranged near him. There was another man to help him.

As he directed with his eyes, brother placed the earthern pot covered with red cloth on the banana leaf. The old man removed the cloth. “Who all want to perform?”, he asked. Three of us moved infront of him. He told the posture. We sat touching our left knees on the ground. The position was precarious as the other knee had to be raised. We wore the sacred ring made of holy-grass.

Shuklambaradharam vishnum

Sasivarnam chaturbhujam

Prasanna vadanam dyayayet

Sarva vikhnopa santhayet..”, he recited and gave us a hand full of Aerva , our local balippoovu and black gingelly. We put them thrice into the pot while repeating what he told. “Are the remains in the pot laughing at me?”. I looked into the pot. He always ridiculed all these.

Aamy was imitating everything. A piece of banana leaf was given for her too. She adjusted the rest with sand. After some time, she saw the lighted lamp and other accessories. The other man was trying to protect the essentials for their livelihood. Aamy continued her trials to attack whenever he was distracted.

I tried to concentrate.

“Pitrumstarpayami

Pitruganamstarpayami”

We waked towards the east and placed the banana leaf at a distance and clapped for the crows. Two came. My sister looked me and gave a weak smile.

The old priest was waiting. We did the rest rituals. The pot was again covered with the cloth. We walked towards the sea when the priest directed. Brother walked first with the pot on his head. Tears brimmed my eyes. A red blur. He threw it backward. We dipped ourselves in the water thrice. Waves. I turned back and searched blearily for a red spot.

“Ammaa..Acha..Vavii..”, Aamy was crying. Tears trickled down her cheeks. We saw fright in her eyes. My mother was trying to calm her. We walked back to the shore in wet clothes.

Aamy smiled. Its another New Year.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

WHEN THE HEAVENS LET GO.....

I sit in the backyard with my text on my lap.Streams of sweat race each other down my brow in protest.The scorching summer heat along with an exam the following day assures my waning patience that it's bound to be beaten by frustration.

The heavens teased me over thew past few days.The overcast skies tempted.The muffled thunder and occasional breeze unleashed my imagination.

Long sweltering days of disappointment add vigour to my mounting frustration.Intense heat,parched throat,sweaty skin and I smolder from within.Yet,I hope.

I coax,cajole,plead and finally threaten the heavens to send me some relief.

The heavens mock.

Tired,irritated and disappointed,I give up,admit defeat to the summer heat and step outside with my books.It's stifling hot indoors.

I look up.The pompous clouds jeer at me.I hurl a furious glare at the skies,try to ignore the heat,wipe my brow and look at my books in a valiant attempt to concentrate.

Whats that distant rumble?

"Get the clothes!!It's here!!",shouts my Mom as she dashes out from the kitchen and grabs the clothes off the line.I give her a disbelieving look until I'm hit.

First, a trickle.A drop here,a drop there.Then,the heavens let go........

Summer Rains!

Huge lusty drops of rain pound down drenching everything in it's wake.The joyous rain drops spash at my face before running down my bare neck.Cleansing.

The air is washed off the heat.The scent of fresh earth fills the air.The trees toss aside their dusty jackets and flaunt their fresher greener green.

I look up in grattitude and a cool breeze rushes into my arms in an embrace.Refreshing...

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Great COMMUNICATION gap

The Great COMMUNICATION gap!!!!



This world is full of people who can or whos got the skill to speak double meaning sentences.Ten sentence and ten reply...at last u realise u ended up with the wrong reply and keep up with ten more and later twenty sentence......lolzz
Will this change....???
The worst of all...they are so adamant!!!!Why cant people think that they too can be wrong??!!

A humorous event....

A judge was interviewing a woman regarding her pending divorce, and
asked,
"What are the grounds for your divorce?"
She replied, "About four acres and a nice little home in the middle of
the property with a stream running by."
"No," he said, "I mean what is the foundation of this case?"
"It is made of concrete, brick and mortar," she responded.
"I mean," he continued, "What are your relations like?"
"I have an aunt and uncle living here in town, and so do my husband's
parents."
He said, "Do you have a real grudge?"
"No," she replied, "We have a two-car carport and have never really
needed one."
"Please," he tried again, "is there any infidelity in your marriage?"
"Yes, both my son and daughter have stereo sets. We don't necessarily
like the music, but the answer to your questions is yes."
"Ma'am, does your husband ever beat you up?"
"Yes," she responded, "about twice a week he gets up earlier than I do."
Finally, in frustration, the judge asked, "Lady, why do you want a
divorce?"
"Oh, I don't want a divorce," she replied. "I've never wanted a divorce.
My husband does. He said he can't communicate with me."

HEART? SORRY,E-CHIPS.

"Kill him!!!Kill him!!!, shouted the boy.

The roughness and hatred in his voice shook me.His voice brimmed with rage and revenge.

Why did a fourteen years old boy say like this?Am I in America?No, it is a small browsing centre in kollam district.

It was a friday,15th April, I was breathlessly doing my work regarding NSS at the browsing centre.

I raised my head with anxiety.

Oh, the boys were playing games on the computer.They were in a car chase not in their seats.Their car ran like a cheetah.It ran over human beings."Kill him and get the money!!!"
Their full attention was on the screen.They thoroughly forgot their surroundings.

For a moment I went back to my childhood; where I lived as a bookworm. I used to read books like 'Balarama'and kalikuduka'.The colourful picture stories in them took me to a world of imagination and knowledge.Through them indirectly I knew about the morals in society.Through the characters in these books I identified good and bad personalities.

As a kid living in the world of imagination,I spent most of my time for books.I lived,nurtured,and grew up on books.I knew about my culture and the warmth of my soil through the letters.

My Granny told me several stories.Most of them were moral stories especially from Ramayana and Mahabharata.I identified myself with the kings and angels in the stories.I accepted their positives into my heart.I was as surprised as when I reached the wonders of the wnderland as Alice.

In my schooldays,children from all around our area walked togather to our school.We trew stones at mangoes,collected tamarind,stole 'champakka' from the houses.We told pompous stories to each other about ourselves like,"I have a t.v at home as big as an elephant","My papap is in the military and he gave me a gun", and so on.Even though we hadn't even seen a gun or a fridge at that time.But anyway wev enjoyed such innocent lies.

We reluctantly sat in the classes.At intervals we jumped into the big courtyard of our shool.We played 'sat','mother and kid' and 'pazhukka'etc.

We ran,jumped,fell down.....

In the evening we reached home with mud covered dresses, sweat, sometimes with wounds in the body.

We enjoyed each and every moment of our childhood along with nature........along with ourselves.

We lived every second.

But now at the age of 18, sitting at thev browsing centre I realised how much the world had changed around me.

The young generation is now unaware of the 'wonderland of Alice' or the 'magic lamp of Aladin'.For them these are stupidities.

They have no time to waste for silly imagination.They are practical.Life meant action,struggle&money.They value hatred,outrage and murder.Compassion,love,sympathy are absolute trash.

When the people in earlier generation came into crises like debt,most of them thought about suicide.But the new generation are not fools like that."kill him and get the money"they will say.

The younger generation is floating with technology.Click-click-their hearts beat.Click-click is the harmony of their lives.

Technology burned the humanistic values inside them.Technology injects artificiality,cruelty and hatred.than human beings, they are YENTHIRANS.

They have no compassion for their fellow beings.No love for parents, no sympathy towards the suffering thousands.How can you expect them to be changed when they are grown up?They have a bundle of knoledge but no wisdom.

Who is responsible for this?our media have a major role.

Isn't it a time for a reawakening, for a re-think?

Read this beauty and listen to its rhythm

Stickeen always insisted on going with me, however wild the weather, gliding like a fox through dripping huckleberry bushes and thorny tangles of panax and rubus, scarce stirring their rain-laden leaves; wading and wallowing through snow, swimming icy streams, skipping over logs and rocks and the crevasses of glaciers with the patience and endurance of a determined mountaineer, never tiring or getting discouraged. ( 'Stickeen'- Frank Muir)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

IF EDUCATION MEANT CIVILISATION

15 Long years of toil in school and five more in college. Finally, today, I am a Post Graduate in English Literature and have a lucrative job in hand.

Of the 23 years I have walked this earth, I’ve already spent two decades of my life to get educated. At the end of it, if I pause to ask myself if I am educated, what would my answer be?

Yes, definitely, I am academically qualified. With a good job and good money in hand, I am well settled in life too. But is that all what education means?

The very expression ‘well educated’ usually brings to mind the image of a person with a handful of degrees, the best job one can hope for and very deep pockets. But if you think about it, education extends far beyond the boundaries of job, money or academic qualifications in a person’s life.

To be educated means to be civilised.

Alongside academics, education is supposed to instil values, morals and virtues in each child. It should broaden the minds of men and encourage them to be tolerant of another person’s views. In the very least, an educated person should have basic civic sense.

If the people of India were civilised, would this be the state of our country?

Why go anywhere else for examples? Just look around you, the litter on the roadsides, the garbage piled up at every corner of the roads, the ponds, parks, rivers, bus stations, railway stations. Which public place is spared from this blatant lack of civic sense? Not even the empty private compound down the lane.

Shifting the onus on the government or the corporation every time the issue of garbage disposal arises is pointless. We the people are responsible for our motherland.

If Indians don’t care for India, who else should?

Ingredients like morals, values, virtues and civilisation sets an educated schoolgirl apart from a street dwelling counterpart. If education has failed to educate us, then what is the difference between the educated and the uncouth?

The educational institutions of our nation have the responsibility of moulding each child into responsible, civilised citizens of the nation. Imagine what the India of tomorrow would be like if each of them, by the end of their formal education gets groomed into civilised human beings. How much better a place the society would be if the youth are trained to have an open mind where they can consider their counterparts as comrades with no prejudices towards anybody about anything. How many lives can be saved if each student is compulsorily trained in basic First-Aid measures? Even prevalent social evils, including corruption, can be curbed if the mindset of the people were to change.

Attitudes change with the right exposure, awareness and knowledge.

Making students responsible individuals means they will be responsible not only in their own lives but also towards the society, the people, the nation and above all to the environment.

As today’s youth races ahead at breakneck speed in a highly competitive world, where do they have the time to think of anything or anyone apart from themselves and their lives. Such a narrow minded approach would never have formed if they had grown up getting to understand and feel for the world they live in. By the end of their formal education, they should be ingrained with that humanitarian and patriotic mindset which will make them do their bit for the world they live in.

The people of India lack in this attitude which is why the world says,” Indians do well, India does not”. For any integrated development to take place in any society, the attitudes of the people must change.

With the right attitude in place, the whole nation will work together in unity – keeping aside all selfish motives and differences – for a better society, a better nation. In such an India, each citizen, every educated individual will make it a point to play his part well for the simple reason that he loves his nation and feels responsible for the society that created him.


(If education meant civilisation, where would Kerala stand as the state with the highest literacy rates?)