And she waited

She looked teary-eyed, Khateeja, the newly-wed wife, as she folded the bundle of pages into the envelope finishing her first hand-written letter to her better half, who departed overseas last week, soon after their marriage. Stretching her arms, she looked down the bed, wearily, as it was full of colorful pens and highlighters and other stationery objects that hurdled her to sleep.

The clock ticked forty five past ten, as she arranged her bed as she went into dream to visualize her longing thoughts. She had been busy for past two days, collating everything in her mind and send in a single letter.

“It’s going to reach him in another 6 days”, she thought.

As she dispatched the envelope the next morning, her eyes are set along the road that connected to the post-office, like a telescope tilted to set on focus by an earnest astronomer anticipating a spectacular space event.

Indeed it’s like a shooting star; the letters from her husband. And she waited.

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Peekaboo with the Past

If I could go back in time, I would re-visit my old school for making amendments. First of all, I would do anything in all my power and influences to stop my history teacher from teaching history classes. The reason is, he didn’t like history. And I didn’t like history because I didn’t like him. I’d rather choose Ridley Scott or may be Nicolas cage. Dont’ ask me why.

Nevertheless history was far appealing then in my school days, but to a certain extent; exams and grades. But now it makes me realize what kind of influence could it make. Its important that the legacy should be preserved and taught. It always leaves us with two options; we either learn mistakes from the past or try to imitate them for its grandeur and glory. And also the history is full of conspiracies. In fact half of the truth is engulfed into darkness, deliberately.

But sady, we are a bunch of people with no sense of history. Damn, the whole world is archived into the history books. Every reputation in the present has its own story and  every glory has its past. It helps relate to things and get the chain of events. How astonishing if history would have taken me back in time every time I visited it. I could have lived a thousand lives through history.

All the answers lie in the past, don’t they?

I’m trying to learn the lives of the revolutionary humans of the past. How did they do it? What were the circumstances? What was the situation then? Who all were involved? who actually gave a thought? The wars. The motive behind wars. The civilization and the inventions. The artistry and the conspiracy surrounding them. The Egyptian Pyramids; they are might. The English colonies; they didn’t spare any land; The Romans; their astonishing warfare. The Mughals; they orchestrated culinary masterpieces .

To cater to educate this in my world, I would build historical libraries as much as shopping malls. Seriously! I want people spend lavishly on their knowledge and intellect. People would flock to get into these malls after work. The malls would have libraries and research museums where people can stop by, look into things and learn. Others would pass by the windows. May be I would introduce season sale on ‘Harappa and Mohenjadaro’ researches. And every day of the mall would have a theme attributed to any event in the past and I cannot stop imagining on this.

Again, the past brought us so much and we still thrive on them all. We hold responsibility to understand these splendors of time. Although we are far far from the the midieval and old ages in all aspects, we are just a group of boastful redundancies, because we always build on top of already existing entities than rebuilding from scratch; reusability. Remember?

On this ground, all our recent innovations are just an enhancements, I reckon.

I would continue to think on this and write further. I’m dozing to travel back.

My First Superheroes

Have you ever felt going back to the past on hearing any particular song after long years? Long as in very looong. A decade or more than that ?

Mostly, a song when it was heard after long years, we could re-collect the places/people/days associated with the first experience of it. It may be anything, a movie, a picture, but a song has its peculiar impression. It had happened several times to me in the past. But this time its not just a song.

Google revived my childhood memory with a small search query after decades. It made me very happy and took me 20 years back in time.

1994. 

The first grade school routine was really mundane. Even the primary kid needed a break.  It was a time when there weren’t plenty of choices or options for entertainment yet the happiness was ample with little of what we had. The Saturdays were usual by helping mom with her household chores. Dad takes us out around the city as he goes on work. But there was a particular hour on Sundays, on which I was reluctant to go out. No matter what it was a difficult choice to leave the television from 2100 till 2130. Because, it was ‘Morphing Time’.

The TV series premiered during the 1993-94 season. A group of 5 youngsters were chosen to save the planet from evil and were know as the ‘Power Rangers’, my first superheroes.

I stayed for one year and six months in Brunei, if I remember it correct during which I watched as much as I could. When I returned to India, I had a video cassette with only three episodes of it. If my then Video player were to have a soul, it bore the severest of torture by playing the cassette not lesser than a thousand times. And then I gave up. I never watched it since then. 

After very long time, Yesterday, when I saw the youtube video of the season-I, it was such a flashback. And when I heard the opening song, a happy smile struck me unconsciously and the old memories erupted as goosebumps. I remember every one of the characters who acted in it.

Introduction theme, still feels the best of all. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpcCoW5gA7w

The Morphing Time is the specialty of the show. Here’s the link for it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0Hc3Tycm7k

and I’m never tired of seeing ’em again and again 🙂

How I wish to go back in time. Because of things like this, the childhood happiness still lingers. Cheers 🙂

Podcasts’ courtesy: Google, Youtube. 

Pangs of Nostalgia

Sailors of Monsoon !

Paper_Boat_by_Eredel

It’s always been there. A strong feeling of sadness mixed with pleasure and affection when I think of happy times of my life in the past.

But it did occur to me today, not once when I saw a video compilation of the life in 1990s, but for the second time when I saw an advert poster which had a picture of paper boat. It struck a relational search query in my episodic memory that made the neuron cells fetch the good times I had in my childhood.

I was born and grew up in my grand-parents’ house situated in my native land Koothanallur, a small municipal town. It’s a beautiful house cornered in one of the busiest junctions of our native. It had one storey and was terraced by old-fashioned roof tiles. The portico stood at knee height from the roads and had adequate place to bear the playing pitch for cricket. I don’t remember playing football there. The entrance to the house was not barricaded by iron gateway, as it does now. 

Not very long ago if I could remember, it was an unusual weather and turned out to be continuous downpour. The streets resembling perennial rivers with the rain water freely flowing through the shallow roads. Nothing could have been done except enjoying the rain and expecting holiday announcements from school. After the rain stopped, I remember gathering at the porches that made into a river bank and finding tiny, fragile white-colored vehicles travelling on water. #Paper boats.

It’s a very common pastime in rainy days, where we all remember making paper boats and were very proud of it. We made ships of different size. They were made of classroom notes, papers, magazines. A war ship would have a knife-like tail at its base. The boat bobbed like a cork on the waves: light and buoyant.The happiness is short-lived as long the boats continued floating in the surface and so is the sadness when they sunk without fatalities. It was a joyful.

Also, it didn’t stop with the roads. Our ships sailed in the puddle in our living room below the small open top ceiling. It was like a mini swimming pool. It was difficult for the ships to sail when the rain started. So we had to wait until the rain stopped. 

The rainy days ended happily as my ships sailed.

Picture courtesy: Google.

Letter writing with my ‘great grandmother’

Back in my school days, I remember the frequency of letters that people used to write for communication. Be it in postal card, or sealed inside envelopes, people could write pages of messages for the dear ones located far from home. Letters traveled across globe delivering hand-written messages, with love.

I remember those letter pads stacked in the shelf, that mom used to write to my father.  Along with it were different colors of pens, sticking out of the pen stand with other stationery objects placed on the top slab, just visible enough for me from I stood. The shelf tickled my curiosity as a school boy, to climb up the top slab to explore and steal some for school, which mom was watchful over me whenever she opens it and rarely allowed me to climb.

It was in my 7th or 8th grade, that I could recall those fine afternoons helping my late great grandmother, Umm Salma,  in writing letters to her daughter and to her grandchildren. We called her with love as Umm’amma, literally meaning ‘grandmother’. She was a lovely woman, independent, living alone in her house located at a stone’s throw away from our house.

She must had been in her late sixties or early seventies that time. She could not write and sought my help which I happily obliged. I go on weekend afternoons. The moment she opens the door, a happy smile would flash to welcome me. The notepad, with writing pens already kept at the table indicated that there wont be any delay to begin. We both would sit in the wooden rectangular swing in the hall, spacious enough to accommodate more than couple of people. The brass rods are suspended to support the four ends of the swing.

The letter writing starts like this. She would start dictating the words as if she was talking with the recipient of the letter, as I begin writing. The beginning of the letter to anybody remained same. The salutation and the prayers to the recipient never changed.

‘Dear . . . . . , May almighty give you long healthy life, enough wealth with bounty of happiness. Aamen . I’m doing great with God’s grace and hope everyone is good too . . . . . ‘  and the story goes on.

She was very careful with her words, and make them clear for me to understand and write. I have never taken proper classroom notes and don’t remember doing so, at any point of life. But then I was careful and it was not a hard task. She would dictate as if talking with the person while I’m hurrying with the writing not to miss anything. She would wait for me to complete the sentence. When I’m done she would begin the next. I was like a reporter interviewing a celebrity, careful not to miss a word of her quotes.

She at times made me write more than couple of letters. It used to be a quite long, covering pages after pages. After every turn, intending to take break, my arms weree stretched and knuckles bent, that made her smile and ask ‘Oh dear, are you feeling pain in your hand ?’, to which my replies used to be ‘No Umm’amma, I’m just stretching them’. She would convince me that it will be over soon. As a token of gratitude, she would ask me to mention that I’m helping her in writing this letter, to which I proudly include at the footer. When we are done, the instructions were to carefully fold them and tuck them in the envelopes, bearing the recipient address.

She would thank me and always used to ask me if I would need anything to drink. Then before I take leave, she would say words of praise and utter prayers to God.

It’s one of the precious moments spent with her, that I’m able to relish now and thankfully I did not refuse to do at that age. Its certain that she taught me how to write a letter.

She had an amiable smile, a wide grin that one could never get tired of watching. So lovely and so motherly, warm and comforting. I at times joked with her, to which she would never scowl. She was the nightingale of our family, ‘A lady with love’ 🙂

Grandparents are the blessings of our lives and so lovely, aren’t they?

– In remembrance of our Umm’amma

#Letters #Mail #HandWritten #GreatGrandMother