Tuesday, September 30, 2014

My coffee date with the mesmerizing boss

The other day I arrived at the cafĂ© a good 45 minutes early for my scheduled meeting, for three reasons. One: I love studying people; Two: I wasn’t sure of the location and didn’t want to be late; Three: I wanted to enjoy my cuppa alone!

Picture Courtesy: MorgueFile
Sipping the latte as I sat engrossed assuming the nationality, age and mood of passersby, I saw my friend step out of the elevator at the far end of the lobby. She was with another woman [she had told me that she was bringing her boss along because she had to be dropped enroute.]

What height! I have a thing for tall people. And this boss was towering over my friend. Her demure strappy stilettos stole no credit for that, possibly her pixie hairdo stretched her neck up an inch, if at all. Her flashy red lips paled the Louis Vuitton on her elbow joint, as her carved legs strutted with precision kissing her knee-hugging skirt.

I had to hurry for they were nearing… Noticed the peacock-blue silk scarf teasing her plunging neckline and I imagined measuring her slender waist with my palms, so much so when she extended hers on arrival, I couldn’t say a ‘hello’ because I was holding that breath hard to tuck my tummy in.

And wow! her nails were polished the same shade of her eye-shadow that highlighted the hues of her scarf. She sat diagonally on the chair, crossed one knee over the other delicately, took off the shades from atop her head delicately as if a piece of melting cheese and placed it next to the classy iPhone.

My friend, meanwhile, had started briefing me on the agenda as she was in a rush. I couldn’t concentrate because I had not consumed her boss to my satisfaction yet.

I have this thing about women who carry themselves well; as in moderately-yet-glamorously-but-attractively-and-not-over-the-top sort of well! And yes, my latte turned odourless and gave up when her perfume took over. So dainty and lilting and...I had to remind myself not to nuzzle the space between us.

“What will you have?”

“Nope. We had lunch, and we need to go quick…” my friend volunteered.

“That’s wonderful of you..” began the mesmerizing boss and I turned to her greedily. 

“Thanks Nisha. But I’m full…”I didn’t hear the rest of what she said, nor do I remember the expression I sported or the conversation that ensued.

The remnants of her salad were on her teeth!

Now, I also saw white powder on her tailored black shoulders. Then again for the first time I noticed her index finger going to her scalp.

Time to leave, she dabbed her lips with a tissue, took her lipstick case and used the same index finger to extract the piece of lettuce stuck between her teeth!

I have this huge thing against women who embarrass me. You ask why the hell I felt embarrassed? That’s the thing about me!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A life-changing week... In gratitude!

So I thought, what better way to end a week - one that has been life changing at that - than by expressing my gratitude.
This has been a roller-coaster of a week emotionally... Thank you Nabanita for the reminder by way of your post. Thank You Laurel for the initiative.
Before I set any further in my new-found self, I owe this to the Divine and a few people...
A big huge hug to the cutie, softy doctor for returning my mother to me and telling me, "Now that your mother is healed, you relax. Be happy." Thank You Dr Shreeja.
A thousand thank you to my mentor, for not mincing his words and telling me in no uncertain terms what I need to change in me so that I don't attract uncomfortable people in my life. Thank You Velu Sir.
A hundred hugs to my blogger friend for helping me cut the crap when I shared an emotionally draining episode and helped me see a fresh perspective. Thank You Judy.
Humble prayers for my driver who through his sickness was at my doorstep early morning to take me to work. Thank you.
Thanking my editors at work who trust and respect me. I wish them success.
Thanking my colleague Vicktoriya who inspired me with her real-life happiness story! I wish her health and joy always.

Thanking my young friend for thinking about me when he embarked on his project. My prayers and wishes with you Ameel.
A zillion hugs to my little girl who through her words, action and simply being herself each day  makes me complete.
To my man, for being my rock!
To the Divine for making me realise who I am!
Thank You!!!

PS: To all those who wish to be part of the gratitude Link-Up...Click here and Laurel Regan will guide you

You may want to read related posts...

This is where it began...on Sept 1  
    What people call me...

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Social media’s love for women

Deepika Padukone’s Twitter rage over Times Of India video is disturbing. Not because she roared. Salutes to her! Well said!

It is so because it is making News. Social media is on a roll… all and sundry slamming ToI, praising the actress’ courage and discussing media ethics and women’s empowerment.

[I do not want to comment of media ethics or women’s empowerment now, as they are grave topics that warranty isolated attention. I'm speaking only on social media and virtual users now]

Well, during these last few days, another woman has been on the internet.

Dr Sunitha Krishnan – co-founder of Prajwala and an anti-trafficking activist. She was gang raped as a teenager that has left her partially handicapped. She not only survived the dark days but is living in style. A style that defies glamour and hoopla. She has dedicated her life to ensure no other girl suffers her fate! 

Now she is selected as one of the five finalists for the prestigious "Nelson Mandela - Graca Machel Innovation Award 2014. The news is on the very same social media that’s rallying for Ms Padukone. Dr Sunitha needs her countrymen’s and women’s votes to win. 

Her FB page [as of writing this] has just 3,401 likes. The link I shared on my page requesting my virtual friends to vote has just 9 likes and one re-share. 

Am sure, Dr Sunitha wouldn’t care about winning. But as a citizen and a woman, in particular, it hurts.

It hurts to see that the nation rallies for a star’s cleavage rather than a laywoman’s courage!

Continuing on the social media clamour…I happened to see another post comparing Mary Com and Priyanka Chopra, followed by a plethora of comments on how “one is fake and the other original”; ‘Only  fake sells in India”… [To those uninitiated: Priyanka Chopra is an actress who essayed the role of Mary Com in her biopic].

This time around our virtual friends are sympathizing with Mary Com – the sportswoman - and slamming Ms Chopra. Here its money and fame that’s rubbing salt. Each single one of them forgetting that both the women are just living their passion, their dream.

On the same note, let me mention another woman-related social media News that made headlines last week. An IPS trainee officer Merin Joseph went viral on the internet because of her beauty. Following a rumour that she has taken over as the ACP of Kochi, virtual friends confessed that they wouldn’t mind being arrested by her. Phew! 

Her FB page [as of writing this] has 48,437 likes already…and counting!

I am NOT concluding this article... simply because it’s going up on the very same social media...

Just one reminder: The social media reactions to the above women were not all male-exclusive!

PS: Meanwhile, as bloggers let’s do our bit… Here’s the link where you can cast your vote for Dr Sunitha Krishnan. Voting closes on September 25. http://www.civicus.org/awards/#/home

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Nisha is...they filled it in

Battling a sinus attack and irritatingly jabbering a mind, I was looking at giving today's entry a miss, when a post on how we judge people knocked something within.
Ever since I can remember, I've been called names or at least bestowed with ample adjectives. A private person; an intense person; a high-strung individual... The latest is that I am a simple person.
I lay my thoughts bare on this blog 'Uncensored'. My Toastmasters speeches are laden with my shameful incidents. My book 'Anamica' is an autobiographical novel. And yet I'm called a 'private person', presumably because I don't roll-over and laugh and walk around talking ninteen to a dozen with all and sundry, making my presence felt.
I am one person most colleagues have said they are comfortable working with. I make it a point to visit all my friends staying within my reach at least once in two months; call those who are far away at least once a month; visit all my relations on my hometown visits even if it is at the cost of re-scheduling and cancelling my assignments...yet I'm called a 'high-strung' individual.
I cannot hold myself at the slightest of jokes and cannot laugh without holding a tissue to my eyes and nose, and yet I'm called an 'intense' person.

Now the latest on the list of my descriptions is that I am a 'simple' person. Well, flashy dresses and dramatic make-up is not for me. This is one adjective I would love to retain with my name, for the 'simple' reason that it has helped me crack my mental Sudoku.

Decoding the 'simple-ness', I believe it is a matter of the heart. I trust people easily. And, therefore, I suffer easily.

This is also one of the main reasons, I now understand, for my sinus attacks and frustrations.

All those who have named me thus far - friends, relations, acquaintances, colleagues and foes - a Big Thank You!

“My heart is no more a garbage bin! My self-worth is not for public voting! Any more.

I hope my doctor reads this announcement. She would be pleased I took heed of her advice. 

PS: Has name-calling helped you look within? Helped you become a better person?

Thursday, September 11, 2014


Nostalgia. I've known this word since middle school or possibly high school. And I've used it numerous times since then. But it was only this morning that I felt it, while I sat keying into the mobile in hand and sipping cold tea, chatting with two of my school friends whom I discovered on FB after 25 years. Yes. After a quarter of a century!
St Ann's High School Bolarum [Pic Courtesy; FB Page]
Do not challenge me. This moment I can write a thesis on nostalgia.
It's a longing that weighs somewhere within, it's an ache which you enjoy and wish it lasts yet you want it to end because only then will it reach its zenith. It's something that makes you feel so young and at the same time makes you feel old. It makes you feel accomplished and blessed and yet you wish it had remained thus sans the accomplishments that now define you. It just makes you want to scream and jump up and tell the world, 'hey listen', yet all you do is bang at the keyboard and part your lips into a smile staring at the images on the screen, wanting to relate each minor detail of the face that is staring back at you to that minor version stored in your memory. It makes you wish if the person just walked out of the screen and hugged you and you wonder if you had even once hugged them when they were sitting beside you all those years ago. So what is it?

Nostalgia is unexplainable!
And when its classmates that make you nostalgic, it's an era that tugs at your heart strings.
One of them, Rashmi Dewan, whom I connected with this morning, was in the army for 15 years. Married with two beautiful kids, she has taken voluntary retirement as a Lt Col. It makes me proud writing about her.
Nostalgia has no ego!
The other, Priti Adeline, told me that my mom has grown old but my dad is the same, after checking a picture of them on my page. I was surprised she remembers. And she had more... "Do you remember Nisha, your mom had come to meet Ms Rosaliene when we were in the upstairs class..." I racked my brains trying to recollect her family.
Nostalgia is guilt-ridden!
Long after the chat, promising to organise a re-union and until then keeping in touch often, I felt buoyant. A couple of issues I had on mind for the day seemed frivolous. If I've come this far, I can cross these hurdles, too.
Nostalgia is empowering!
Thank you, to all my classmates of school and college - all those who I am in touch  with and those who I long to reunite with!
Today, I have a message for my girl - "Live your student life to the fullest. Rock it with your mates, have a blast every single day! So that decades later, when you run into one of your friends you shed tears of joy!"
PS: Have you met friends after decades? Did you weep or scream or turned your face away? Share your re-union stories here...

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Connect: Let us begin at home

On World Suicide Prevention Day, I share a story...So as to protect the privacy of those involved, I am not mentioning names or location, nor am I using any adjectives [so as not to judge the characters involved. Honestly, this one is going to be real tough]

Our world is our immediate family, 

Let's pledge today to connect with our own!

A lawyer mother, a doctor father and their three beautiful daughters were the envy of the South Indian community. The oldest was born in the early 1960s, the second in late 60s. The third child was born in 1975.
By the time the youngest entered Pre-degree [it was not called Plus-2 then in India], the eldest sister was a lawyer and the second one studying to be an engineer. She was required to become a doctor to complete the family profile. So she studied science.
In 1992, she was enrolled in a medical college in her home state. After three years, she was taken off college and sent to a medical college in another state because, “she couldn’t cope with the students". People did find the excuse bizarre, but the parents were respectable senior members who ought not be counter-questioned. [I am under self-pledge not to judge, so I say no further].
By end-1999, the mother shifted base, along with her two servants. Bought a house there and pulled the girl off hostel, hired a retired professor to tutor her.
Two years thus passed. There were rumours [not confirmed], the girl had not cleared her first year yet. The mother returned home to prepare for their second daughter’s wedding. The girl was fetched a week before her sister’s wedding.
She was the perfect li’l sister of the bride, always by her side. A week after the wedding - the evening before she was to return to college - as the family was preparing dinner, she excused herself saying she would rather pack her stuff.
She went upstairs to her room and hanged with her dupatta on the ceiling fan.
Years later, the eldest  sibling told a relative, “If only mom was not adamant on making ***** her a doctor…!” she sighed.
I was reminded of this today, especially after reading the theme for this year "Suicide Prevention: One World Connected"
Our world is our immediate family, to begin with. Let's pledge today to connect with our own.

Picture Coutesy: Morguefile
Look, don't just see: Look at your mom, dad and siblings and notice changes in their gestures!
Listen, don't just hear: Listen to what your mom, dad and siblings may say in the passing!
Feel, don't resort to just lip-service: Feel their reason and don't pile yours on them!
Our world begins within the four walls of our home. If we cannot understand and be there for the person closest to us how can we connect to the world outside?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Simple meals and simpler dreams

Picture Courtesy: MorgueFile

Flowing its course, the river sung her song
Teasing and brushing vegetation along...
One normal day, the sky sprinkled its dews
And the river hugged them within
Soon, the sky roared in pouring 
And she hugged them all within
No time teasing vegetation, she was
busy caressing the tortured drops…

His home was a song, lilting lilac love
Simple meals and simpler dreams he lived;
One normal day, she walked in crying
He held her palms and heard her saga  
Soon, she shifted base for support
And his life became her crutches
Jilted once, she lost reason to live
He kept aside his life to see her smile...

Days later, the mighty sky settled its core
She turned to see the drops within
They were gone... wondering
why they didn't wait for her
she continued flowing, when
the vegetation tickled her sides
Flowing its course, the river sung her song
Teasing and brushing vegetation along!

Months later, his now best buddy
flew out and returned with rejuvenated dreams 
He looked within… yet silently helped her soar,
one day she flew out again; he waited for a call...
Two years later, she knocked at his door
'I need your help'... he heard her out
He cleared her hurdles and waited for a call...
Months later, she knocked yet again

Simple meals and simpler dreams he yearned
Flowing his course, like the river singing her song!