Foreword

There is neither a structure nor a texture to this blog. The subject matter can be anything and everything under the sky that I feel about at any given point that I happen to sit and blog rambling about everything in general. My thoughts and views are basically influenced by what I read, hear, gather, and ponder... if there is any copyright violation which I have not duly acknowledged, kindly let me know.

Ref: Chichkoo is what I lovingly call my daughter, kiddo my brother, amma and taatee my late maternal grandparents, and OA is the other adult in the family.

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Jan 18, 2012

The Truth About Love - Jane Elizabeth Varley

Unputdownable fiction which tackles emotions, insecurities, struggle, peaks and lows of life, well written, a mystery woven around the story of a couple going through adjustment phases, the insecurity of the second wife, trying to get a grip over the fear of the glamarous ex-wife getting back to get the man of her life and treading around step-kids, the issues thereof.

The mystery part is about the house the couple buys after a squeezing-tight financially dry divorce settlement with the first wife.  The house has a historical touch to it with the letters of a Victorian couple broadcasted by BBC and loved by many.  When Sally with her toddler Louis and husband Edward get in to the house as a second wife fighting her own battles of insecurities with a high-flying ex-wife Pia and two grown-up kids, Hope and Dan, she gets herself busy trying to dig up the actual history of the house, as to what happened to the couple involved.  It takes quite a bit of digging through archives and long-dead, reluctant sources.  Intertwined is the story of Anna, a neighbor who takes up the basement flat of the same house who happens to be a workaholic film maker and media person whose life takes a different turn when the ambitious project "marriage menders" which she works on gets into unexpected troubles.  In the process, she tries to understand the meaning of love, family ties and support system along the way trying to get back the hold on her life.

There are quite a few threads left unanswered but then that is fine to me :), the less complicated and easy flowing, the better.!

Enjoyed reading this book a lot!

Jan 17, 2012

Freedom at Midnight - Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins

An extensive and exhaustive read in the recent times.

I have always wanted to know what actually transpired towards the end of the freedom struggle
why India is the way it is?
Was Gandhi an architect of Indian freedom or just happened to be a lucky man who caught the pulse of the Britishers who were at any rate going to leave the country?
What about the revolutionary leaders and many others who were just sidelined and not gotten any importance as such?
Why Nehru and why not Sardar Patel who was definitely much more qualified and Indian to the core at heart?
When Britishers could bring under their rule the whole nation irrespective of their religions why did Religion enter in the way of freedom struggle?
Why did people who let a firangi rule unquestioned have so many problems to be under the same roof governing themselves peacefully?

There are so many questions and I do not say the book is an answer to those questions but in a way this is one book which has come closest to even trying to attempt to answer my queries.  Firstly, the fact it was written by a French Man and an American, I guess is the reason for being not as judgmental or one-sided about Indians and English in general.  However, this book kind of glorifies Mountbatten and at some point I felt it is through his eyes we see the history at that time, considering much of the text and data is taken from his journals, notes, scraps.  Interwoven in that is the story of Mahatma, subtly putting forth the criticism and gently tackling it.  Gently touching all aspects of the personalities of people involved in the final days of British Colonial Rule end and partition, the rise of two nations, the aftermath.. the strengths and weaknesses of the involved.

It does not give a complete picture of what really happened throughout the nation but most certainly around what and who lead to it from close quarters.

Would definitely suggest to someone who would read something different for a change... into fiction and biographies for a while, going through defining moments of history of India.  

A book that attempts to put forth the defining the final moments of Freedom Struggle, the transfer of power, birth of 2 nations. The moments surrounding the times when we as Indians entered self-rule or self-ruin???

Jan 9, 2012

To My Sreya Baby

Naa Kukdoo Makdoo Gaadiki,

It has been a while since I wrote you anything specifically.  Dont I have to say anything to you or do I say to you that often that I dont write to you any more.

You have grown up leaps and bounds, talk a lot not the baby talk but you hold on to adult conversations quite by yourself for quite some time.  When people look at you talking ,they mistake you for some kid quite older than you actually are (touchwood) but I do miss those baby days terribly.  Those words like "neena (water), beeba (blanket with a baby pic) and that cute little "tea" you used to say so delicately like a baby parrot.  That tiny baby who I could carry along in a half-folded towel fashioned like a swing is walking, talking and just about a tiny individual already.  You have choices, tastes and you just make sure that I know them and not force mine on you though I occasionally insist in case it involves your nutrition intake!... err not just insist.. beg, shout, shove, push, carrot and stick approach whatever it is that takes to get something into that tiny little tummy of yours.. sigh!!!


One major change in your life is your knowing your father and spending a lot of time in person with him, being spoilt rotten with him dancing to your tunes, just giving you everything from a car to an ipad which you surprisingly are so adept at using (and I am like, what the hell an i-pad to a toddler, crazy or what???) just because you happen to ask him for them.

There is so much love in you to share it equally with both of us and surprisingly though I was initially angry and frustrated at so many changes happening so quickly and also for just not being able to let them out in front of you and occasionally bursting out not being able to contain the rage any longer.. there were so many ups and downs, highs and lows and now that the things have plateau'd I consider that it is in your best interest that things are working out, so let them be and not resist.  To be honest to you and myself, maybe I just gave up the struggle giving it a mask of maturity.  Whatever is the case, let me assure you kid that you will never ever be blamed for whatever has happened or will happen.  It has been my doing and will be so.

Some times I get scared when you talk that you might turn into those "buduru bendakaay kids" who talk anything and everything that comes to their mind watching those damn telugu serials and listening to their parents/relatives/neighbors/maids talk but (touchwood) you are still a baby no matter how much you think you are BIGGG and blissfully unaware of any such language.

We stepped into the year 2012 together on a very sad note losing my loved maama and your Duddaai and surprisingly as much as I was working out on telling you what it actually meant, you seem to have understood just like you do everything else.  You know he will not return and you know no pain as such.  I just want you to remain to be so unaffected by anything and everything.  While I struggle with my own pain, I see you putting into practice what is taught to us adults but never practiced.. MOVE ON UNAFFECTED.

We have been to many trips, visited so many places, met so many people and had so much of fun together as a unit called family which I thought I could never give you besides me and you making up for everything else, which I must say takes a load off my chest.

You know nothing in English, including basic "what is your name?" because I just have not felt the need to teach you English which you will be bombarded with the for your entire life once you enter into the school.  When you are at loss to answer when someone talks to you in English suddenly, I used to feel a pinch of guilt and run to your rescue explaining to the people, perfectly telugu speaking individuals, that we prefer to talk in Telugu, so you do not actually understand and get those dirty looks (yes, they do give) as if I am ruining your life talking to you in our mother tongue.   When it is a conscious decision, why that guilt in me?  just because you are lagging behind in understanding for NOW does not mean you will never know it.  Now when you are moving with some English speaking telugu kids you do understand and will gradually know.  I am not depriving you of anything, you will just take your time to get there :).

I want to say so much to you, write a lot more but English is failing me.. now that we have a mode of communication and you do understand it pretty well, I guess my mind is tuned to talk to you, think about you in Telugu.. will get back to that in some time.. like every time, there is sooooooooooooooo much to say and you know that I wont rest until I tell it to you.. so stay tuned for some...errrrr a LOT more..

Retain that lovely nature of yours, be good, do good, spread cheer, love and joy just the same way ever!!!

Love you naaanu,
Amma (your tuttuma).

Jan 6, 2012

Sree Raama Raajyam - A Visual Delight

An absolutely fantabulous, magnanimous visual treat.. is what I would call the movie.

I watched this movie a while ago and wanted to review it, did not want to do it hurriedly and then it got postponed indefinitely and then yesterday while channel surfing got to watch the 50-day celebrations and then had to do this post!

I do not actually remember Lavakusa which is supposed to be the first attempt at Rama Charita which was immensely popular.  Still remember the song "vinudi vinudi raamaayaana gaadha, vinudee janulaara", Rama meant NTR, it still means him and only HIM and Seetha meant Anjali Devi... well to me I imagine "Sneha" to be apt for some reason but just loved Nayantara to the core as Seetha.  She just gave a mind-blowing performance, maybe it is apt to say she lived the character than acted.

Being a Bapu fan, was absolutely certain he would make the heroine look awesomely lovable and he did exactly what is best at doing.  God, the sets, even the graphics made it give an epic-like feeling.  Everything was so huge, so larger than life but then the epic is larger than life too which suits it perfect.  Ramana garu wherever he is must be happy with the final output.

Coming to the actual story and all, our generation kids hardly anything other than chota bheem and all those cartoon characters and this visual delight with kids Lava and Kusa and Hanuman as another child makes it fun for the kids to watch and understand, surely eye catching for them.  Great attempt, something which will go down in the history of this generation kids like "Lavakusa" was for us.

The music is the backbone of the movie and it gradually grows on us... all in all a wonderful wholesome package.

What I loved the most in the movie was Seetha's Gorintaaku applied hands, it was so authentic and each time I saw her, I was so smitten.  Baalayya was good and I am sure no one else would have been as good except for Jr. NTR in that role but comparing it with NTR coupled with high-exceptions, he seemed old with wrinkles and pot belly.  ANR as Valmeeki was the best of all even at that ripe age, lots to learn from this man.

Wanted to come home and watch Lavakusa at home right after SRR but somehow just could not, will watch it some time today if possible, at least in episodes and maybe I would be doing LK vs SRR in my own way :).

One sad thing I noted that most of the people that were on the stage yesterday, had lost someone really dear in their lives... Bapu - Ramana, Ilaya Raja - Wife, Dasari - Wife and just recently ANR - Wife.  He was not around but it did feel sad seeing them at one place.  May their souls rest in peace.


Jan 5, 2012

Kamal and Minnu

One of the very good virtual friends I made is kamal.  I liked him for his sensible performances in Aavakay Biryani and Kalavaramaaye Madilo and of course love his paintings and all things he does with passion, like the animation series he tried to do and the society conscious behavior kind of holds in a very good light and high respect in my view.

and the surprise is, he pinged me up one fine day, to be precise Deepavali day and I still have that transcript with me and stop myself from pinching hard if it all actually happened!! anyways, the point is it was a chat with someone I truly respect, so it made all the difference.


kamalkamaraju: hi sushma.. morning and a happy deepawali to you and yuour family
Sushma: wooooooooooooooooooooooow
Thank you and some to you Kamal
it is such a pleasure
and a toooo good surprise...


and that surprise lasted for quite some time and when it did wear off, it was an extremely wonderful morale boosting one on one for almost an hour... yay!!! was I on cloud 9... 99!! actually..  Then when he got made this book shelf, I was like I should have this one, even spoke to his mom about getting it shipped to my place but then I fell, broke my leg once, then fell again broke the other leg and rest as they was history and the deal was kind of let hanging and since it was a limited edition model, I could not ask for it again!!

We chat off and on when he gets time and I happen to be around... it has been quite some time, in fact just about at the time of release of Virodhi, but then I got really busy to even be online and he being his usual busy self got busier with his theater, paintings and multitude of other things!  I keep a track of what is happening but hardly interact any longer.. now is a chance to bond up with him in person, so if any one is interested do visit the place, take your kids along!

His passion for painting with his social consciousness took a turn and then Minnu was born...In his own words MINNU.

There is an exhibition  in MUSE Art Gallery, Marriott, Hyderabad on 7th January from 06:30 p.m. onwards .. Please contact Kaali Sudheer, the owner and the curator of the gallery, who also happens to have a cute little daughter of two, just like my Sreya, and get further information from him about the exhibition at +91 9396 4444 24. Kamal will be there to see you.. I wish I could be there too... I will surely try to send in OA to represent us and get one of those lovely limited edition Minnu calenders!!

Good luck Kamal and Happy Touchdown in artworld Minnu.. love you girl, you rock!!

Jan 4, 2012

Another Kill

Phew... I happened to kill yet another baby snake yesterday!!

vaanalu vaste chaalu paamulu intlo kanipistunnaayi ee madhya, chuttoo paadu badipoyina illu, andulo manishettu molichina gaddi, ee paamulu, elukalu, chedalu, appudappudu vaati pakka illaki vihaaraalu, baaboye, okkosaari vanukocchestundi...

We have a diwan outside the house in the open balcony but since a dog got used to coming there and sleeping at night I put a cover on it every single night, yesterday when putting that I see something fall on my hand and then on the ground and began to crawl away, it was dark and I had not switched on the light and could just see the outline, the book I was reading fell on it and it hid in the pages of the book.  when I switched on the light, I see just a tiny tail out of the book and then I had to kill it before it hurt my baby.. well, she was not around but I cant trust that they wont cross paths again even if i let it go.

Then I just killed it and there goes another one to my credit!!! It was maybe days' old, it hurts when I remember the entire episode..  I am yet to get over it.. should I have let it go out of the way just the way it had come??? No idea!!!! but kill I did.



Jan 2, 2012

Rambling Away On The Year Past

There is so much to say, so many lines forming and erasing themselves in the mind.. too many backlogs, want to write but not really sure as to how much I explore those thoughts without losing the current balance and frame of mind.

The year left behind so many memories, what began with a disastrous fall and getting bedridden for 2 months ended with being really fit and fine than I had been in the last few years, so that is a blessing!

Relationships stable and plateaued with an understanding not to rush things, daughter growing up beautifully (touchwood) some times a chatterbox, some times a naughty toddler, some times mature beyond years baby, some times just plain my baby :), amazing how they grow up leaving you to wonder wherever their supposed innocence and babyhood has been left behind.

Loss of my youngest maternal uncle bringing out varied emotions, anger, frustration, sadness everything in equal measure.  So much of distress and it still seems like he is around somewhere just like he was and any time we would hear his very familiar scream "Pandu gaaaaaaaaaaaa" the name with which the kid is identified in the village, a life wasted... extreme sadness, uncontrollable anger and a lesson to just not get drowned by emotions!!!

Job front went for a toss with so many breaks but stressors have gone down a lot.  I have been relaxing all I want, not really wanting to work.  Some times there is this fear that I am getting used to not work, a nagging fear that I am gradually rusting myself very far from being the ambitious professional girl that I was at one point.  I need to push myself doubly harder just to focus and sit and make myself want to work and not find excuses.  I need to motivate myself to cut myself from the extended holidaying break-taking mode.

Personally, I feel that I am a better person than I had been for quite some time, I see my good old self resurfacing at times though not fully.  There is not that much of anger, resignation to fate has not set in but a deeper understanding gave way to matured thinking leaving the cool me take over the hot-blooded decision maker.  Being a rebel, aggressive everything is slowing giving way to being more passive.. but the anger still kindles from time to time, need to work a lot more on this aspect.

All in all, I would say, the last year left me a very changed person, a lot more at peace with myself and pretty much relaxed and content person, the restlessness factor takes a backseat and that really calls for YAYYYYYY!!!!


For Evil Eyes on LO