This Post is Blank…

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When I need to talk, I blog. It is as simple as that…

But right now I am staring at a blank screen and wondering how I used to do this before. I have churned out posts every single day for daily challenges. I have completed months of daily writing challenges. I have said so much and I have read so much. I have gained an impressive amount of knowledge from blogging spheres.

When I first started blogging, my kids weren’t even teenagers. They were growing up way too fast and life was way too complicated. I was working and then I wasn’t. Then I was working again and then I wasn’t. Then I was working again and then I wasn’t. Somewhere between those confused decisions, fateful friendships, colourful colleagues, blogging adventures and the Indian Education System, my kids grew up.

I am expereincing the  Empty Nest Syndrome right now. Ideally speaking, I should be getting back to work. I should be getting back in to the crazy world of work politics and tensed relationships. Though, I don’t think I am emotionally stable enough to go through that again. It might seem weird to some, but to me I take such commitments pretty seriously. I give it my 110%. Ultimately leading to disappointments and fatique. My body has a way of responding to emotional stress. It begins to shut down. There are actual studies that show that emotional stress and fatique can lead to physical pain. None of these show up on test results, leaving you even more frustrated with life!

So what does one do to become immune to life. Does one have to sell their soul to the devil to survive this world? Well , that’s a topic for another day I guess. Right now I am stressing out on a series of stupid issues. Somehow typing it out for the world to read leaves an incredible sense of satisfaction. I am not sure a Diary would serve the same purpose. A diary cannot respond. A diary cannot send you good vibes and hugs. It is passive, I am done with passive relationships with anything and anyone.

A sense of calm is prevailing in me now. I am not tensed as I should be. I read a lot, I watch a lot of Tv, I listen to different kinds of music and I love the company of my better half. With the kids gone, it is just the two of us. Boring as hell. Yet , somehow, fulfilling. In between this calm and this euphoria, I have learnt to stay away from Whatsapp groups. It’s a wormhole waiting to take you to another world. A world where misunderstandings and misinterpretations happen beyond our wildest dreams. It’s crazy how sensitive and insecure people are in this world. There is a group of Engineers, out of whom, I think I am the only one who hasn’t had a solid career to speak of. Shouldn’t I be the ones with the most insecurities?

Apparantly, a lot of people who seem well settled with their choices and lives aren’t really so. A discussion can lead to bullying in no time. This can easily be followed by trolling. That’s the pettiness of such insecurities. They just need a victim to have fun with. I have always been an easy prey. I am not too smart when it comes to identifying such traps. I trust too easy. At least I was like that. I have imporved a lot over the years. But it has come to a state that has left me not trusting anyone at all. So I rarely let go of diplomacy when dealing with a group. But still you get roped into something once in a while. Now that I have the time to respond, it is a dangerous game to play. But this time I didn’t give in that easily. At least I don’t think so.

Tell me something, if someone becomes over the top successful in his/her career, can we say that only hardwork got him/her to the position he/she is in now? Is it wrong in saying that the break that someone got is a great one and that he/she is lucky to have got it? Does it negate the hardwork factor in anyway? Obviously they have worked hard, else such a break wouldn’t have come to them in the first place! But not every hardworking individual is blessed with such breaks in life. At least not the ones that lead to over the top success in career. There is a luck factor in everything in life.

Anyways, speaking of insecurities, it seems I do have some of my own too. Actually , I have always had them. I have this feeling that I am never going to be able to be healthy again. So like every  New Year before this, this year too, I have a resolution to get back into shape. A nice round but healthy shape.

Who knows, 2018 maybe the year that makes it happen. I am giving myself yet another chance. Let’s hope I don’t let myself down again.

Cheers Bloggers! Happy New Year.

Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year 2018

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Eid in RAK

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It was a strange kind of Eid Holidays this year. Every year we do plan something in advance for the long weekend that we get for Eid during this time of the year. This year was a slightly different one. My kids are both in their board exam years, so we are tied down at home because of this. But yesterday was the last day of hols for my kids and we decided to take a break from everything normal and enjoy a day out.

Memories are meant to be preserved in the form of pictures that remind us of these days and the warmth that these feelings bring about again when we look back at these days. After a very long time, I picked up my camera to click pictures. Of course, the photos below are a combination of pictures clicked from my DSLR and from my iPhone. Sometimes , it is difficult to make out which is which. If you can, do let me know. 🙂

On the way

On the way

Sunset Paraglidiing

Sunset Paraglidiing

Water on Feet

Water on Feet

Sea shells

Sea shells

Sunset and the beach

Sunset and the beach

The waves

The waves

The Path

The Path

Sunset

Sunset

A small one

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My mom grew up in a farm where everything was home grown. Well, almost everything. Some of the vegetables that my aunt used to pluck from the garden and cook for us, during the vacations in our ancestral home in Palakkad ,were mouth watering delicious. She was a very good cook too.

I still remember those “cheena mullaku” chutneys she used to make for breakfast. A strong chilly flavour packed into those ever so tiny chillies. The flavour, the smell and its combination with soft, white melt in the mouth idlis is truly unforgettable. During the initial years of shifting back from Dubai to India, my mom had managed to grow those at home here in Thrissur. But the plant dies off soon. And we are left with only memories of that flavour. The “look a likes” in the supermarket these days don’t even taste quarter as good!

Why am I talking about those tiny, adorable highly spicy chillies? Well, I am at my parents’  home right now on a short break. That too alone, without my family. This house is packed with memories of my college life as it was built during my first year of college. In fact, I left the day after the house warming  to join the hostel and start my second year in college.

Yes, that was in back in 1993. A very long time ago. My mom’s garden has undergone many changes since then. Today I went ahead and clicked a few pictures of the area surrounding this house. The small garden at the back of the house is definitely the highlight. So sharing those pictures here. Collecting memories, I guess.

Out of Focus Ash Gourd

Out of Focus Ash Gourd

Ash Gourd again

Ash Gourd again

One Bunch of Bananas

One Bunch of Bananas

Two bunches of Bananas

Two bunches of Bananas

Okra

Okra

String Beans

String Beans

Why I love Airports?

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Heathrow Airport

Heathrow Airport

As a child (not many years ago), I used to be fascinated with the place called an “Airport”. I had no idea how an aeroplane flew from Dubai and landed us in Mumbai. It was a mystery for a very long time. But even when the mystery of Aviation was revealed to me, the wonder and fascination of the airport remained intact. Even when the frequency of travel changed from once in two years to at least three times a year.

The earlier flights to Kochi were through Mumbai. The direct flight to Thiruvanthapuram was generally avoided because of the tiring drive to Palakkad. My uncle used to come to pick us up in his mighty white Ambassdor car. His jokes were a class apart. I have never seen or been with either of my grandfathers. This particular uncle was old enough to be my grandfather. In many ways I always considered him that.

The trip in those days was to meet our relatives and friends back in Palakkad and spend the two summer months in the cool Kerala rains. These days trips are about exploring the world. I love to travel. My first venture out of India was at the age of 5. But that was homeshifting and not travelling. I guess I can say that my first actual HOLIDAY tour was to Singapore/Malaysia back in the year 2001. My kids were 4 and 2 years old back then. Since that trip, we took a long gap (till 2010) from such holidays and began exploring the various parts of India instead. The kids were too small to handle such long travels abroad. In fact my son, who generally had no problems like vomiting, had a tough time on board the Singapore Airlines flight that day.

The Dubai airport has a special place in my heart. I have been coming here every year of my life since the age of 5. I have seen it grow. Yet, the fascination of the airport, be it in any part of the world, makes me feel like a child again. Ready to explore and learn something new.

Today, I embark on one such long pending tour. We are at present at the Heathrow Airport, Terminal 3, London , waiting to board our flight to Newark International Airport, New Jersey, USA. My first trip to the continent of North America.

Photo Crazy

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I am crazy about photography. This is what I like to tell anyone who would care to want to know anything about me. But the fact is , I haven’t the slightest idea about the technical details of anything in Photography. I still feel my head go in circles when people talk about Aperture, Exposure, ISO and what not.

No, I haven’t still explored the manual option of my DSLR. Don’t ask me why then I claim to be crazy about Photography. I can only justify and say that I like to see the emotions and the intent of the photographer in a photograph. The elements of life in the photograph always fascinate me. Maybe there are terms like composition and rule of third and some such in the madness that I call passion, but I wouldn’t know. I am a fan of good photographs. Plain and simple justification. I don’t care if it isn’t perfect as long as it conveys a message.

I guess that is why I went ahead and created a website to post the silly pictures I click and then I rhyme about it as to what that photo inspires in me. Yes, that is my relationship with photography, it is a heart to heart with captured moments in time. To be revisited with heart and soul at a later point in time.

For years I have been submitting and checking out the photographs that are being linked and shared based on certain themes. The first I ever encountered was the “Thursday Challenge“. From that platform I have been following, although not very regularly, a few Indian Photography Bloggers. Out of them, I have always been inspired by one blogger who keeps it simple and yet manages to speak a lot through her pictures.

I enjoy Indrani‘s photographs and travel posts a lot. In fact, I did check some of her posts while I was planning my Switzerland trip last year. She also does a series called the faces of India, which I find very fascinating.

iShare

iShare

Today’s Festival of Words 3 Day 2 @ Write Tribe topic is “Blog Love”. I hope I have expressed my love for photography blogs in general and Indrani’s blog in particular well enough. 

I'm taking part in the Write Tribe Festival of Words -3