No pain ,no gain’  ;

how true is this adage ..

Even the beautiful ,gentle rain..;

is brought about ,by the scorching sun rays


Even  the ‘gold‘ goes through temperatures high ;

to be used on your fingers or neck to adorn …

Every mother , to hear that one ‘special’ cry…

goes through pain , before her baby is born


The hungry Lion has to make a kill ;

to feed himself and his precious ‘Pride’…

The  humble  farmer , has his farm ,to till ;

to  feed the mouths of his children, that cried


The model you watched walking on the ramp

has not had her favourite food, for  years;

The little child ,who read under the street lamp ,

is now the bestselling author ,who moves you to tears


Pain in life , you cannot do without…,

if you aim to achieve some decent heights !

And as  I have often heard Great men say

‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’

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By the way , thats is me in the picture 😉






WP_000416There are things known , and there are things unknown….and in between are the doors of PERCEPTION”

Aldous Huxley



AN ‘EAVESDROPPING’ IN PARIS !!! -[ Daily prompt ,daily post]

I am not usually the kind of person who ‘eavesdrops’ on other people or pry into their personal  affairs .  Well , that is , unless , you are sitting or standing ,for that matter , so close in proximity to my location that my auditory cortex finds it humanly impossible to ignore such high decibel levels …..and… I give in…( okk…I eavesdrop ,or the word  ‘overhear’ ,will perhaps, better  describe such an event ! )

Travelling to other countries , provides one of the best opportunities to ..ummm..well….‘overhear  conversations , you are obviously not expected to be a part of !

I have had the good fortune to do both !

On one,  of the many metro rail journeys  , we undertook ,while on our sightseeing tour in Paris , many years ago , I happened to be seated next to an elderly woman.  ( I couldn’t discern much as to the country she belonged to ,though my hunch is that she was probably an American ..) As I sat there , the only Indian ,(apart from my husband who was standing somewhere  far behind ), I tried to observe the diverse cultures represented inside that single compartment ,of the train ……..I was amazed …

It was only then, that my eyes  focussed on  another  lady standing, next to the one sitting besides me..They looked a lot alike , except that this lady seemed a little more cheerful in disposition and of course , several years younger to the former …In any case , to me they looked like sisters…

As the train glided through the tracks , all of a sudden , a loud chattering  reached my ears…It was this younger woman conversing…..

It took me another few seconds to realize that the lady was pointing in my direction …and still more , to  conclude that ‘I was the topic of discussion !!!’ I  pricked up my ears  ……

The lady, had apparently misjudged my grasp  over the ‘English’ language  , for she made no attempts to lower her volume ,or try to speak in hushed tones ……….( obviously confident of my incompetence  ! )

Here is what she said ( her voice loud and clear ! )  : ”I thought I was the one ,who wore big earrings…Somebody to your left is wearing even bigger ones !!!”  She told , her friend( or sister ), with a mocking smile !

Listening to her conversation, my immediate urge was to touch my earring , to try and sort of measure it (to see if it was actually bigger than hers !!! ) , but on second thoughts I refrained from doing so…….

I wanted to save our lady  some embarrassment ,  just in case she were to realize  that not only did I understand English , but could speak in  it too…….So , I kept my hands down , and pretended to look in the other direction , as though I didn’t comprehend a word  that she  had uttered ……..and let her have her ‘fun’ moment !!!

But my heart was still  fluttering like a trapped bird , as I smiled to myself , at the thought of having managed to  arouse such interest , in the mind of a complete stranger , in a completely  strange land !!!

Womanly wardrobe woes ….!!!

It was only the other day , I saw this image of ‘Aunty Acid’ on facebook and couldn’t help myself from rolling with laughter !!!

Every time I decide to go out somewhere and open my cupboard , piles of unused , long rejected clothes come tumbling down on me, almost smothering me !  . I gasp for some fresh air… But experience has taught me ,how to recover from that initial shock, and instantly shove  those  garbs back ( almost with a spirit of vengeance! ) into the deepest and darkest recesses of my closet, so that they never again see the light of the day……

Only a few minutes post  this ‘routine’ episode, I am faced with the same , ‘ETERNAL question , What should I wear? . After seconds , too ephemeral , of  self -interrogation , I slouch against  my bed , disgusted and utterly disappointed with my ‘LIFE’ ….( I am sure you  understand the gravity of the problem now !!! )

My room ,is shrouded with a sudden sense of  ‘impending doom’ …….’This is it !’, I think to myself , a fat drop of tear waiting to escape my ‘ woebegone eyes ! ‘ .  ‘The apocalypse has arrived.’.( ok…so what if it arrives for me ,every time I inspect my own wardrobe !! ).

My room  is now akin to a battlefield , strewn with clothes all around ( most of which I don’t even remember buying !! ), as  I stand there waste deep in a sea of garments , of all colours  and patterns ,still clueless………..

 Ahh…this ineffable’  nature  of women…..A wardrobe , overstuffed with clothes ,yet , not one to wear… Let me replace the words of the famous lines ( I hope Samuel Taylor Coleridge forgives me ! ) :


Well , Women are ‘ incomprehensible creatures’ . My Husband has not  , till date, been able to understand  or provide a plausible solution to this perpetual problem ,that haunts me, ever so often !!!……..

As far as I am concerned , I have reconciled to it , because solving it is as impossible for me, as for one buried alive to lift his gravestone. So till death do us apart………………………..


( P.S : Have you encountered similar womanly/ manly woes about what to wear?? Do share your experiences in the comments section ,and also if you have managed  to find a solution to the ‘problem’ !! Men are free to leave your take on this subject too 😉 )

Are you fair or not…? That is the question ! ( Daily prompt )

In India , there is a stereotypical supposition that all the people residing in the South ( irrespective of the states ; please note that there are 4 states in south of India !!! all speaking completely different languages ,yet seen as one ! ) are dark complexioned ,without exception …….( which is not always the case !)

I am a South Indian ,from the state of Kerala , but brought up mostly in Delhi (North India ) . I have always been mistaken by my friends and teachers for a Punjabi ( from the state of Punjab ,in the North ) , mostly because of  my complexion ( which is not supposedly ,dark enough ,for someone belonging to the south !!! ) and also because of my name ,which would be rather unconventional for a South Indian girl..

On one such occasion , My new Hindi teacher , in between our class ,enquired as to how many of us were from the South. There were only two hands raised , in the air ….

One was a boy , who,  apparently  fulfilled the teacher’s ‘standard expectations’ from a South Indian . Thus, satisfied at having further reaffirmed her belief ( with a smirk on her face ! ) she asked him to sit down and turned to look at the other raised hand…

The hand was mine ,and I could already see the teacher’s mouth open  up in disbelief( rather than amazement ! ) as she interrogated me , to settle her doubts… A little disgruntled and probably annoyed ( that her myth was shattered ! ) , she sneered , and remarked ” YOU ARE SO FAIR FOR A SOUTH INDIAN !! ” And all I could do then was ,smile back at her ,a weak ,confused smile…No thank you ,for certain !!

I did not know ,what a back handed compliment meant then ! 

FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE NO IDEA ABOUT INDIA OR ITS STATES ,HERE IS A MAP…( My native state Kerala is the southernmost ! ):

In my dreams ,I envision a place….( DAILY POST WRITING CHALLENGE )


In my dreams ,I envision a place….

far away, from the human race…;

where nature alone speaks volumes…

The ‘sound of the forest’. …’looms’


Where the air is fresh , and pure..;

A place with a magical allure ….

with scents so sweet and enticing ;

That, God , too, appears to be smiling…..


That place in my dreams…

So far way ,it  seems…;

Yet ,I am filled with wonder anew..;

as I wish for it to come true…..


A calm ,and such a beautiful place ;

filled with warm and sunny days…

No blaring horns or screeching sounds ;

only the sound of streams and creatures abound..


I hear no people , scream or jeer..;

no hatred is known ,nor no fear…

Where peace and quiet is there forever ;

no race ,no religion, or creed ,whatsoever


The world I see , is close to ‘ Eden’ ;

It may seem to be ‘utopian’

You can call it my fantasy or a delusion ;

or even label it as a ‘mad man’s illusion’…….……



Amma’ ( that’s what my three and a half year old calls me !! ) ,  ‘Look at this !‘ , she says excitedly , pointing to a  bright pink button on her dress ,  ‘Isn’t it beautiful…??’ ,  she asks , her face all lit up ,and her big  black eyes , wide in amazement , staring  at me , in  joyful anticipation….And I smiled to her ,and nodded ,saying ‘oh ! it is really pretty..’ .

But somewhere , in the  far corner of my heart , I felt ashamed…a little guilty perhaps , because , honestly ,I didn’t ‘find’ much joy or beauty , in something as ordinary as a button ….yes...I had to admit…I had the lost the art of finding joy in small things…..and for this I envied my little girl…!!! She was able to see what I ,as an adult could not…..but what ,God , intended us to, when he created this world.

I didn’t remember the last time ,I looked at sky and watched the ” fluffy cotton thingies” …moving by , or when I took time out to watch the pretty flowers in my mom’s garden….I didn’t remember a time ,when I watched the little , hardworking ants carry food around or the tiny humming bird drink nectar from the flowers….I have not ,in the recent past ,bothered ,to look at the pair of colourful butterflies , fly around together ,as if doing the waltz…

Yet my , little girl , has seen all of this , beaming with  excitement at every new sight ,which I had ,till that moment ,failed to take notice of.. ( taking it for granted perhaps ! ) .

My daughter,is unwittingly teaching me , how to take delight in the small , but exceedingly beautiful things in life.

As adults ,we take things and people for granted…We are so busy with our monotonous lives , that we forget to  ‘draw pleasure from the everyday things’ .Things that surround us , yet we do not see…….or maybe…, choose not to…..

I am learning now ,that happiness doesn’t always mean , a material possession…in fact ,most of the time , happiness comes from those things which we deem irrelevant in our lives….and which come free of cost !!!

A new dress, shoes,or jewellery  may bring us a lot of joy…but such happiness is momentary …

If we want our happiness to last longer than that we need to learn to enjoy the world ,the way it is..’perfect ,in its imperfection !!!’

You can begin by looking at world from the eyes of a toddler , and realize how gorgeous it is !!!….You will be surprised ,how even the most ‘normal’  or mundane looking things start filling you with joy,and how the world suddenly transforms into a ‘wonderland ,that never ceases to amaze..’ 


Try smelling that beautiful rose or appreciate the vibrant colours of a flower in your garden . Go out and listen to the cooing of the ‘cuckoo’ and mimick  it with your little one….. Watch the nest , you never cared to  notice and see the eggs hatch….Look at that fat little caterpillar ,chomping  on a leaf ,and show your little one too…


Have you tried using a ‘Chenile plant’ ( also called ‘the red hot cats tail ‘ ) to make a tail for your little one and watch her/him ,scamper around like a monkey ! haha !! let me tell you it is a treat to watch…!

The world is filled with wonders ,all you need to do is ‘to spot  ‘ and enjoy the small things in life…………

Weekly photo challenge- THE FRAYS OF A HOUSEBOAT ……


The roofs of the ‘Houseboats’ in Kerala ( South India) are made  of split bamboo poles ,coir ropes and bamboo mats. And this is my idea of ‘FRAYS’ :



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These pictures were taken in Kumarakom, Kerala…



The fiery red orb of light slowly sank beneath the horizon bidding adieu …..The sky was now pitch black , barring a few specks of sequin-silver ,that dotted it ,here and there…The pale globe of silvery light ,lay hidden behind the clouds …As the night emerged in full splendour ,adorning a black cape , it’s darkness seemed all consuming – swallowing everything that came in it’s way….

And Rachel , desperate to escape it’s evil fangs , plodded her way through the dark alleyway. She had never been this late from work. But then ,today wasn’t any other day…Miss Richardson , her most important client , had chosen her for the task…it was a matter of pride for someone like her….

Rachel’s hair salon was named  ‘The elixir for your locks’ and it was, certainly one ,especially for those with lack lustre ,dull or damaged hair….Rachel had the ‘Midas touch’ when it came to hair..A strand of hair had only to be caressed by her soft ,warm fingers ,to shine ,with a life of their own !!!

No wonder Rachel’s hair salon had become one of the most sought after , in town . About six  months back , she had the most unexpected client …a celebrity in her own right…Miss Jenny Richardson , an author to a bestselling novel and a social activist..

What more was required to have an ordinary small town salon ,with humble origins,,to skyrocket it’s way to fame ! The news of a popular ,bestselling author ,visiting a modest salon,was the talk of the town….and the images of it were splashed generously in every fashion and lifestyle magazine..Rachel was a celebrity hair stylist overnight !!!

But as they say ‘with great power ,comes great responsibility !! ‘ . Business prospered ,but so did her workload . Rachel hired a few more hands to share her increasing burden ,but when it came to important clients , she was obligated to provide her own ‘exclusive’ service….,sometimes to suit their busy lives ,making her work schedule ,erratic…

Work now extended beyond the standard 6 pm time …But today was the longest she had been at the salon…

The alleys were usually desolate , with an occasional tramp sleeping in a corner or a lovelorn couple , relying on it’s privacy to make up for the lost time. Usually ,Rachel strolled through these narrow bylanes, indifferent  to it’s occupants , much like she passed by the mannequins in a shop , conscious but uninterested….And today would not have been any different…………

As Rachel walked briskly in the direction of her home ,she heard a thudding behind her. Alarmed ,she turned to look around and pricked up her ears…nothing ….An eerie silence hung in the air.. Then, dismissing it as a figment of her ” wild and famished” imagination , she started to walk again. A few seconds later , the thudding resumed. Rachel froze in her tracks , panic -stricken …Someone was following her ,she realized , her heart pounding .  The air around her seemed to thicken..

Rachel stood still , then ,as if by instinct, she darted towards her left , and disappeared into one of the narrow bylanes of the street  . She was quivering all over , like a dish of jelly on a rickety table …As she scuttled in the darkness , heaving and panting , her lithe body ,hit against something firm and staggered… It was only when a pair of arms came to her rescue ,that she realized it was a man….

Though his body was obscured by the darkness of the alleyway , the glistening silver light of the moon, streamed on his face , highlighting its well sculpted features …

And the world came to a standstill…atleast for Rachel. Never had she come across such perfectly chiseled features …Those eyes ,the colour of dark chocolate ,with flecks of hazelnut..,looked at her bewildered. The forehead was partially concealed by a blanket of hair ,the colour of midnight sky ,resting on it…..Dark , luxuriant hair , that seemed to glow under the luminescence of the ‘lune’ ...It seemed to her as if a thousand fireflies were dancing underneath that glossy mane….

Rachel stood gazing at the electrifying apparition in front of her ,mesmerized….

Then abruptly , the ‘orb of the night’ was beclouded and the alleyway was lightless again…

Once the cloud had passed , the moon was out…but the ”mystery man” had vanished…like a ghost before the sun…poof !!!

Thoroughly dismayed by the unexpected turn of events, Rachel resumed her stride…But this time she sauntered ,as if in a trance….as if she was sleepwalking…!

Having reached her home , she rested her self on the couch , replaying the events of the evening…All her famishment…her appetite seemed to have disappeared , and she wasn’t surprised..

Rachel sat up all night….wide eyed….and the ”bewitching face” in the alleyway never left her thoughts….It was to haunt her for many days to come…..

From then on , every evening ,Rachel ambled through those alleys ,watching every passerby ,with a keen eye…in search of that one face …the face that stole her heart away….


As he walked back through the dingy alley , he smiled….a sinister ,almost devilish smile…And all of a sudden , those soft delicate features seemed to have hardened ,( a little distorted )…a metamorphosis , it was…..He was the same man, yet if Rachel was to see him now ,she wouldn’t recognise him. Such was the transformation.

He clasped a gold chain with a diamond pendant , in one hand , which he swung from side to side, like a pendulum . With his other hand he clenched tightly , a wad of crisp currency , that he thrust into the pocket of his trousers . 

He hadn’t found a suitable game in sometime….his last penny having been spent on his meagre meal….He was a pauper now ..and was contemplating his next move , when he saw her approach.. Looking a little scared and vulnerable , she seemed like a perfect target to polish his skills on.. ..

He had seen her before..’Aah..yess..’ he remembered…’On the cover page of a  fashion magazine on display, in the streetside shop.’ he recalled….Somewhere in the corner of his thick skull , a bulb flashed …and he knew his next move….

Without a moment’s hesitation ,he started following his ‘possible prey’ in the hope of leading her to a corner and mugging her….But , she heard him and  on a sudden impulse ,made a dash in the darkness…He was caught offguard…but regained his senses immediately and chose to take a short cut , that took him face to face with his target ,as she bumped on him.. ‘The lord is generous…!!’ he thought to himself…

Being an experienced pickpocket , his nimble fingers were quick to do the deed , his victim staring at him fascinated,completely oblivious of what transpired….He had always taken pride in his good looks ,but today it worked to his disadvantage…Just when he began to doubt his chance to escape ,nature took its course ,( with the moon blotting out ).Taking advantage of the sudden darkness , he quickly made his exit …..

Now , looking at his booty , he wondered if his victim ,would ever discover what actually happened ,  that night,in the tenebrosity of the alleyway . And then….. he laughed…a maleficent laugh , that echoed through the bylanes of the sleepy town…

Somewhere in the distance , a woman winced in her sleep. It would take her several more days, perhaps months ,to realize , that the ”man in the alleyway” had stolen… more than her heart…………………


Before the first tear of joy , escapes a mother’s eye , as she holds her new born close, transpires an emotion that is unseen , unfelt  yet  powerful and real –‘ FORGIVENESS’ .

To embrace her new creation wholeheartedly , every mother ,knowingly or unknowingly ‘ forgives’ her little one for all the discomfort and misery of those precious nine months and the agonizing few hours , thus paving the way for two  new emotions – ‘ECSTASY’  and PRIDE’  …YET , most times ,this ‘FORBEARANCE‘  goes unnoticed…undiscovered even by the mother herself…

Are you the kind of person who holds grudges…?? Has some one hurt you so bad , that  you vow never to forgive them ,ever again..?? Has a friend broken a promise ,he/she once made to you..? or is it simply a jealous friend??.. ………….

The questions are many but the solution is one …- FORGIVE.

No , I am not an angel from heavan , who just crash landed on earth. Nor am I some hermit from the Himalayas..!!! and no ,I am not a lunatic…..I am just about as sane as any of you reading this ; a normal human being susceptible to all the normal human emotions….although there is something that might make me a little  ‘weird’ in this unforgiving world..I AM LEARNING  TO FORGIVE...( mind you…only forgive !!! not forget…!! )

My little sister has often pulled my leg for this..Whenever ,we talk about somebody ( oh well..!!!.okk…gossip…if that’s what you want to hear..;) )  having said or done something harsh or impolite , she  goes ballistic. She has always been a little vindictive  , and finds it very difficult to forgive somebody who has been unfair to her …especially if that someone was a close friend…

My principle in life has been a little different. I am no saint…I  have my moments of emotional outbursts ( my husband will be able to enlighten you better on that aspect !!! )….Whenever I am angry , I need to vent out…But once that’s done..I realize I have nothing against anyone…no bitterness…no hard feelings….

I am not someone who can sulk to herself or bear a grudge for years together…But I have seen people who do that ,ruining their own happiness and that of others.

These days I have come up with a new tactic …Whenever I feel frustrated and unable to forgive or forget ( which is rather unusual for me…!!! ) , I lock myself up in my room and talk to myself ,I shout ,I scream….I cry …I complain…I say out every problem I have with someone , or something …..out aloud..(wait…..I am not  crazy..try it out..and you will know !!! )


For those of you who are into writing , even that helps….On a day you feel weighed down by your own pent up emotions….write them down in a diary….everything you feel….every little ounce of  ANGER , RESENTMENT ,JEALOUSY…everything…and see how much lighter you feel at the end of the day….

FORGIVENESS , makes you a healthier person ,reduces your stress levels and enhances your concentration levels…It  brings you inner peace and calms you down.

Some people would like to argue with me and tell me , it isn’t that easy …And I admit it isn’t…But once you learn to do it…Life is so much more beautiful and worth living. If you honestly want to FORGIVE  , you would like to keep these points in mind :

  • FORGIVENESS IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS...rather it  needs a lot of mental strength to forgive.
  • STOP DWELLING ON THE PAST HURTS .Forgiveness cannot happen if you keep replaying the past actions of somebody in your mind.If you truly want to forgive ,you need to move on …Distract yourself with new hobbies ,situations and people..Time is the greatest healer….When the past is no more painful ,it is easier to forgive.
  • MAKE NEW FRIENDS . Learn to differentiate between true friends and fake ones. This will help you to overcome your grief and not experience a similar situation again 🙂
  • FORGIVE BUT  BE WARY …Forgiving someone doesn’t give him/her the license to take your for granted. Some people may misconstrue  your ability to forgive, as a   hint ,that you can’t do without them in your life. Set your boundaries and make it clear that you won’t be taken for a ride again !!!
  • FORGIVENESS IS NOT SYNONYMOUS WITH  ‘ TRUSTING  AGAIN’ .Just because you forgive some one , doesn’t mean you trust him anymore. Breaking a trust is a sign of unfaithfulness….If that person feels genuinely sorry , he/she will make efforts to gain back that trust…let them do it…Trust only when you are prepared to…
  • YOU FORGIVE ,FOR YOURSELF ,NOT FOR OTHERS. Forgiving de-stresses you and de-clutters your mind. So while forgiving a person ,never make it seem like you are doing a favour ,to that person !! YOU ARE DOING’ A FAVOUR’ TO YOURSELF…!
  • LEARN TO SAY ‘SORRY’ BEFORE YOU LEARN TO FORGIVE …If you learn to apologize for your mistakes…it means you are ready to put your ego aside , to resolve conflicts. This will in turn help you in your journey to FORGIVENESS….

We all are humans…capable of  mistakes . In fact it is this very imperfection that makes us so ‘SPECIAL’…We all have , knowingly or unknowing hurt someone ,at some point in our lives…So when we forgive somebody , who hurt us , it is like offering a million apologies to all those , whom we’ve hurt , in one way or another… LEARN TO FORGIVE…AND SEE HOW MUCH BETTER LIFE GETS FOR YOU AND FOR THOSE AROUND YOU…!!!