Know your skin type – know yourself

True beauty is the reflection of our inner and outer self. Which largely include our body cells, our skin types and our personal health and habit. Nurturing and nourishing ourselves can bring immense boost to our self esteem, confidence level and general health.

When comes to skin health, it would be sheer foolishness not to take the basic care. Skin acts as a barrier between the outside world and our interior organs. So, it’s time we realized the implications of the changes of our skin.

First and foremost, we need to understand our skin types so that we can take proper care and nourishment. Coming to it, there are 5 major types of skin types.

What are the 5 major skin types

Normal skin:

Normal skin is most desirable since it requires minimum nurturing. It is toned vitalized with the right amount of oil balance.

Oily skin:

This skin type appears greasy and tends to attract dirt, dust and grime easily. If not taken proper and timely care, this may lead to black and white heads, pimples, spots and eruptions.

Dry skin:

This type of skin appears dry and flaky due to lack of moisture due to inadequate secretion from the sebaceous glands. This skin type tends to age fast.

Combination skin:

This type of skin appears dry at the cheeks, around the mouth and the eyes and appears oily at the forehead, nose and chin (the T zone).

Sensitive skin:

This type of skin has a nice texture and is sensitive to climatic changes and chemical ingredients present in cosmetic products.

 

How to know your skin types

When you wake up in the morning, wipe your face with a facial tissue. If it gathers greasy patches then it is oily skin. If the oil is only in the T zone then its combination skin. If it feels very dry and parched then it is dry and if your skin feels neither too dry nor too oily then you have normal skin and something to be proud of.

The incompleteness is now complete

You had instilled such joy, I had felt complete

Not a care in the world no burden unwieldy

A song in my heart, tapping were my feet

 

There was a time when time stood still

Every moment when I gazed at your face

All my dreams, I hoped you would fulfill

 

Yet a fear, a doubt had been lurking around

Will I one day, from my slumber awake

Find reality hurting and the pain profound

 

We never could really travel together

Fate or what else that stood the barrier

Pondering, makes the predicament only harsher

 

We lived the years as there were to live

But something was amiss something unconsummated

More often than not, the mood would turn pensive

 

Heard of your demise today, my heart went offbeat

That potential and those possibilities that could have been

My feeling of incompleteness is now complete.

God’s Religion

When in religions all,

‘Mother’ means the same,

‘Father’ means the same,

Duties mean the same,

Rights mean the same.

 

When in religions all,

‘Good deeds’ mean the same,

‘Bad deeds’ mean the same,

 

When ‘Nature’ is the same,

‘Universe’ is the same,

When each one is the child of God;

 

Why then are sins committed?

Why does man kill man?

Though depart must we all,

To the same Destination.

One Husband Several Wives and One Wife Several Husbands

“History repeats itself” is no vain statement and it surely does if what has been reported  in the newspapers the  other day is true. The repetition  here has  a small twist, that’s all.

Some years back, probably in Nineties, a man claiming to be an NRI married many young women, stayed with them for a day or two, looted their jewellery and vanished out of sight.

His modus operandi was like this.  He would advertise in  the newspapers that he was on a short leave from USA /UK,  and was looking for a working woman kind of  bride.  There was craze in that era to go abroad, especially USA and  settle down there for a long spell. Many young women like nurses, teachers, clerical staffs, secretaries and  even some junior executives  responded. Our hero chose one who had a good income, went for bride seeing along with a middle aged woman, who he claimed as his elder sister; taking a woman with  him, added  credibility to his game.

After some serious interrogation, he approved of the candidate and fixed the marriage date which was just 4  or 5 days away;  he must go  through the wedding ritual fast  before his leave expired. Oh, was the bride happy?  And the parents were thrilled too.  The man demanded no dowry but the bride may be sent with her personal jewellery and clothes. No parents could have asked for more.

The marriage ceremony was kept very simple.  The wedded couple had their first night in a hotel in the bridal attire. The bride couldn’t spend the night wearing her full   jewellery.  She took them out and kept them in the cupboard or dressing table.  During the night our hero collected them and vanished before it was  dawn. You can imagine the plight of the bride.

In another case, he rang up the bride-to-be and asked her to buy an air ticket, both ways, to  New Delhi.  He would be back on the following day, well in time for the wedding.  That was the last the parents heard of him.  He converted the ticket into cash and disappeared.

He succeeded in seven cases  using different duping methods and the eighth turned out  to be his Waterloo.

During a social party one young thing proudly announced that she was getting married to an NRI, who was on a short leave in India and showed his photograph to the hostess. “How is it?  He is marrying me five days from today….”  conveyed the hostess.  Becoming suspicious, the hostess laid a trap for him.  “Where are you living Mister Suresh?” she asked of him on his contact number.  He gave the address of a hotel.  On checking back, there was no one there by that name. On further probe, they discovered that he was a  part time clerk from a nearby city.

The police nabbed him and took him to court on a case of cheating.  He along  with his paramour got 8 years in jail.

And now comes a similar case but this time the villain is a  woman.

One Manimegala from Pollachi,South India, joined a computer centre, run by a differently abled man. Manimegala made him fall in love with her and  after a few weeks she indicated to him obliquely that she was interested in marrying a differently abled man and give him a comfortable home life.  Rathinakumar fell for her sweet talk and proposed to her.

Even before the marriage Manimegala had  tranferred  his 10 cents land in her two brother’s names.

After the marriage in November 2011, she continued to extract money and valuables  from Rathinakumar and left him one fine morning.

Perplexed at the turn of events, Rathinakumar begged her to come back to him. Strangely, the family members of the girl threatened to finish him off.

Following this development, Rathinakumar lodged a  police complaint.  Preliminary investigations revealed that   Manimegala had conned several men in  this manner.  Her first marriage was with one Sathish Kumar from Tirupur some years back.  He was dumped in due course after she had robbed him of valuables and money. It’s not known how many more men she married and threw out  before she set her eyes upon the poor  computer centre owner.

The police are now collecting more information to find out how many husbands she had  lured and deceived.

Children’s Dental Health

Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic childhood conditions. More than 1 in 4 preschool- age children have experienced tooth decay, a significant increase during the past decade.

The preschool-age children, ages 2 to 5, have the lowest rates of dental care of all age groups in the nation, and they miss out on an important time for effective dental prevention.

“The upturn in decay in today’s preschoolers may be expected to continue into their permanent teeth as they grow older.”To keep this from happening, it is essential to identify children at greatest risk for decay as early as possible.”

The children in low-income communi­ties are at a higher risk of untreated tooth decay due to issues of poverty and access to quality dental treatment. Poor oral health and untreated oral diseases can have a significant impact on the quality of life. It may also result in diminished growth, eating and speaking dysfunction, low self-esteem and negative behaviors that interfere with learning and family life.

The good news is that tooth decay is a preventable health problem. As early as age 2, parents should begin practicing prevention and take children to the family den­tist for a check-up.

Dentists also recommend the following tips: Supervise tooth brushing after every meal and teach children to use dental floss.

Avoid between-meal snacks of sweets, sugary foods and sweetened drinks since they promote tooth decay. Moreover the dental hygiene is also important to prevent tooth decay. The combination of food and bacteria is also an promoting factor for tooth decay.

If your child’s teeth become damaged in any way, take the child to the dentist immediately.

Remember, an attractive smile and good oral health into adulthood begins by taking measures to prevent dental disease as early as when babies begin teething.

 

Matters of the heart-\-break

Are you in love with some person? Deeply in love? How free have you been with him/her physically?  If you have been  only hugging and kissing, this article is meant for you.  If you have gone beyond that or below the waistline, don’t read it.

The modern generation know all about safe sex, the safe period, protected sex, condoms etc. Wonder if they enquire about her safe days from the girl concerned.  Where would be the time for it anyway? The decision itself would be spontaneous and urgent and the darned  act would finish before you  count ten !

The other day I saw on the net a Western pair, aged around 24 years, who  had been having sex regularly like any married couple practising  the technique of  ‘withdrawal’.  It seems to have worked out for them  well for 4 years and they have not decided to get married. I have a horrible feeling  that  they would never get married at all.  In all probability, they may  marry  someone else.  Why? You may ask. They need new pastures, the earlier one having been explored and eaten up. I only  hope the Indian adventurers don’t resort to the  “withdrawal technology.”

One  very  knowledgeable  youngster asked seriously some days back,  “What’s the harm?  It’s only natural, isn’t it? We know how to protect ourselves from STD and undesirable pregnancy etc?”

“Well said, boy,” I complimented him.  “But do you know the consequences? STD and pregnancy  are not the only issues, remember?”

He cocked up his ears to what I had to say.

In India, dear young man, one falls in love so that it leads to the marriage altar.  A maiden dreams of it from week one.  She may not think of casual sex at all. But she may give in, if you insist on it all   because she  loves you a lot and doesn’t want to displease you in any  manner nor lose you on account of a denial.

“OK.  That’s fine,” he remarked interrupting me.

“It’s not fine,  dear fellow.  Firstly, you will feel very guilty about it since you have done something  wrong and against  our culture. Let’s say you care two hoots for the culture. Next, you are likely to  lose all interest in her because you have tasted her pre maturely.”

Some young men may even start hating the sight  of that girl; she would suddenly look ugly in your eyes; and possibly you may even dub her as a lose character who could surrender to anyone asking for sex..  The most important development could be, “There is nothing to look forward to in her thereafter.” And you part ways.

The affected college scholar scratched his chin. “Y…e…s sort of …”  On a closer cross examination he confessed that he had abandoned his No.1 but since he belonged to a group of 4,  he was having an eye on another.

“Have you tasted her too?”

“Not yet, Sir.”

“Do you love No. 2?

“No, not really.  But I did love No.1 very deeply.  Really loved her, Sir.  Dreamt of her as my future wife….”

“What happened then?  You have kicked her out of your heart now , haven’t you?” After several minutes of silence, he accepted  that he had.

This is what will happen if you try out your fun sex. You would lose all  interest in her.  Is it fair on the girl?  Won’t she carry this guilt in her mind assuming she gets married to another person?  A ‘guilty past’ may lead to quarrels, disagreements, arguments and an unhappy end as well.

I have personal knowledge of a few cases. What if the girl gets pregnant? Her future is gone for ever. And the  culprit would, more often than not,  refuse to marry her on some excuse or the other.  The poor girl delivers the baby. I heard several stories of this kind in a Cheshire home where unmarried girls  surrender their unwanted baby. Will such unfortunate females stand the chance of marriage ever again?  Surely not.  Every gent inIndiawants a pure virgin and nothing less.

Despite the pre-marital thing, some stick to their resolve and get married. But then their marriage never lasts. To quote a case: These two were deeply in love for about 18 months and were due to be married shortly. “Why not?  After all we are getting married, aren’t we?”  asked the male partner. The girl reluctantly agreed.  After they went through it, the man had a change of heart; he didn’t want her any longer;  there was nothing to discover in her any more. He avoided her and married someone else.

In another case, [which unfortunately took place in my own family !], though they got married all right after some 2 years of courting, and one abortion,  the marriage didn’t succeed; my sister couldn’t conceive and  the union ended in permanent separation.  Don’t you think but for the pre marital sex and the  badly done abortion, their marriage would have clicked with a couple of children?

All these failures are  due to  ‘one mistake’, one simple mistake committed at an emotional moment when they had lost control over their passion. If only they hadn’t succumbed  to this temptation of  trial sex, they would have been a happy couple with healthy children.

So, keep away from this practice, children.  Remember, “To delay is to increase the pleasure.”  So, hold on until you tie the nuptial knot. You will then enjoy not only your ‘wedding night’ but also have a long lasting and solid  married life.

There is one more thing. The modern day children are very knowledgeable and bold as well.  It’s possible your own daughter would one day ask you how you met her father. “Were you in love with him? For how long? Did you have sex with him before marriage?”  You cannot lie to your own flesh and blood. Wouldn’t you avoid cutting a sorry figure in front of your own daughter.

So keep yourself under control and pure  so that you become a role model to your own children.

Color my heart

The sky splashing colors

Blue red, oranges

Dark green, light green, purples, pinks

 

The best is the not-so-red color

The virgin red is very close to my heart

Full of hope, power and love

 

So what it’s not-so-red?

Difference between red and not-so-red

Is just a shade or two

 

You give the not-so-red

And I will color my heart a shade darker

A perfect virgin red.

 

 

Finding the right words at the right time for the cancer sufferers

Reality bites and having to face your loved one who has just been diagnosed with cancer is pathetically hard. We are at loss for words, tongue tied and do not know what to and what not to speak. However, each word coming out of our mouth have intense implication. We must be careful while choosing the right kind of words and when in dilemma it’s better not to speak at all than to hurt his/her sentiments.

According to LA Times, several peer counselors at ‘National Breast Cancer Organization’ offered the statements they found most and least helpful to hear during their own breast cancer battles.

Right words:

“I’m here for you, and we’ll see this through together.”

“I’ll organize your friends to make dinners, drive car pools, shop, etc. — whatever would be helpful.”

“I know this is difficult for you, but please know I will do all I can to support you.”

“I’m so sorry you have to go through this, but I’m here to help in any way.”

“Would you like to tell me more about it?”

Wrong words:

“You’ll be fine.”

“You poor thing.”

“I know how you feel.”

“I know someone who died from that.”

“Call me if you need anything.”

“Will you be OK financially since you won’t be able to work?”

“I think you should ______ .”

 

Among many, one change that  all cancer patients undergo is having to fight the ongoing battle emotionally and physically. They become way too sensitive even to normal words or the words that haven’t had hurt him/her before. Even the people who  had the ability to laugh at themselves before start to count on words people around them speak once diagnosed with cancer. ‘ I can’t take the call. I have cancer.’ ‘ I can’t pass the remote. I have got cancer.’ – silly stuffs like that goes to show the terrible agony that he/she is going through.

The psyche of cancer sufferers are hard to understand. You never know what turns their emotional switch on. We must not say things like, “You look healthy,” when they are not, or give instances about those who had cancer and how pathetically they suffered. We should not tell them that we’ve never known anyone who was cured of cancer by using chemo, radiation, etc. Nothing would be more helpful than to be in their shoes and be empathetic.  Render the right kind of words at the right time.

Caregivers can make a difference.

Festive newness

The cumulonimbus sky beckons

The concrete nature turning lucid

There is something in the air hard to define

The fun frolic newness

New clothes, new plans, new hopes

New sky, new color, new love

The old Durga – in this new world

Live the festive newness

 

 

 

Copyright of heart

What all I need,
Is just a copyright
Of your heart. 

To paint the sketch,
Of my dreams.
To listen, to the waves
When u breathe.

To sing the praises,
Using all the verses.
To step on my foot,
for your heart’s, beat.

To hold it with pride,
To show how rich I am.
A place of mine,
To stay ever and ever.

What all I need,
Is just a copyright
Of your heart.

Only yesterday..

Yesterday I saw a ‘noble’  man

Getting down from his limousine

Smelling of filthy riches and conceit

Full of fads, demurs and ‘yes bosses’ around

He had a big nose, stony eyes and lot airs

His chin was looking up to the nearest tall building

He was in a hurry and his men were running around him

Confused and lost – they did not know how to make him happy

The ‘noble’ man then got down from his car

Shoved off a sinking old lady with dark penetrating eyes

As if she was a material

That didn’t amuse him

And he didn’t want to buy!

The ‘Julie and Julia’ syndrome – day3

The purpose of life is a life of purpose – -Robert Byrne

Understanding ‘Demotivation’

When I decided to start with my health mission . Only my family knew about it.  I was reluctant to talk about it with any of my friends or others close to me . Today I wondered, why this fear to share?

Am I afraid of negative reactions or was I afraid that I would be demotivated?
People would write it off as “another one of her whims”, “oh! These things don’t last” , ‘oh! Exercise is it?”
I mean I definitely had not taken it upon myself to save the world had I? So what’s the big deal?

Is there a perfect way to deal with demotivation.
One suggestion – “when a bull charges simply step out of the way”. Peace!
People don’t see through our eyes and we get blindfolded to theirs. And when a bunch of people keep harping on the same tune, we too start believing, that, as reality.

I have seen so many of my friends go silent when they were preparing for a course or an interview or even something like buying a new house. As if to say, ‘let me get this over with and then I shall talk about it’.
They were gathering their strength in those moments of silence.

“Awareness” in general and “self-awareness” in particular, is a magic word. A magic wand, which clears all the clutter. The garbage remains around, only until I am not aware of it.
I found meditation, to be one  way to get around with this obstacle.

Surely positive people around and positive thoughts around are life savers .Hence my positive statements before I start meditation. After all, if you do not hope, you will not find what is beyond your hopes.

I find myself struggling hard to keep up with my regimen. I keep swinging up and down on the motivational swing. Has it got to do something with the lunar phases? NAH!!! (When a person smiles in times of trouble, he has found someone to blame it on)

On a serious note, what I need is, to not lose my focus. Not this time.
I remember in one of  Laxmi Mittal’s interview, he mentioned how he had started enjoying his hobby of playing golf. Then one Sunday as he was heading towards the golf course, he took a U-turn and went back home. Simply because, he realized that he had started enjoying this game so much he was afraid, it was going to shake his focus. I was astounded at this thought process and that one statement changed me in so many ways.

“There is no Challenge more challenging than the challenge to improve yourself.”
-Michael F. Staley

TARGET HEALTH :
ACTION TAKEN : (on day 3)

  1. Reiki meditation : Evening 6:30 pm to 7:45 pm practiced self-healing (I should make it a point to follow one fixed time, but looks a bit difficult).
    Read out positive statements again about my health. I visualized that I was exercising daily and saw myself slim and healthy, beautiful and energetic.

  2. Work out with the skipping rope. : did not do this today. One ‘grumpy’
    point for me on that!
  3. Pranayam : Did 5 minutes of  anulom – vilom and 60 counts of kapaalbhaati which took about one minute.
  4. Aerobics : Went off without any cramps. I took the counts slowly on the abdomen workout . My legs weigh like a ton. But my body seems to loosen out a bit and luckily I did not get any body pain though I had started exercising after such a long gap.
  5. Diet : still not been able to do anything about it. One ‘grumpy’
    point there too .

Today the circumference of my stomach measures one inch more than before.

WHAT? Did I miss something there? Grrroooaannn !!!!   but then……

A laugh is worth a hundred groans in any market – – George M. Cohan

Save Yourself From Being Hacked

Earlier this year the Google Apps account of my other domain was hacked. Though I got it back in a few hours with help of some mails to Google but still it feels sad when an IT professional who brags so much about network security could not get to his account.

Here are some tips to save you from the same fate.

  • Use different passwords for different accounts. Everybody knows this but nobody cares to follow this. I know remembering a dozen cryptic passwords is very difficult but still I will suggest you to use different passwords for the accounts having sensitive information.
  • Associate your account with with your mobile phone. I don’t know about others but Gmail allows you to do so. You just need to login into your Google account and click the link in Personal Settings > Security > Change password recovery options. You’ll be asked to verify your Google password. On the “Recovering your password” page the add phone details. This way if your password gets reset you’ll get a sms instantly.
  • Check out your IP Address. Gmail and several other mail service providers tell you the last IP from which your account was accessed. If you see any funny IPs, change your password right away. If you don’t know your IP, go to ipmango.
  • If Possible take regular backups of your mails. You can use any desktop mail client to download the mails and keep in your computer or you can online backup services like BackupMy. BackupMy can create a snapshot of your mails, twitter accounts, photos, blogs etc. at a very nominal price. You can get a trial for free though.
  • Do not use your administrator account for day-to-day work. This tip applies for Google Apps users and of course to other app users as well. Admins should never use their administrative account for general mailing and other work. Instead create a normal user account and use it for regular work.
  • Use https instead of http. If your mails carry very sensitive data then I will suggest you to switch to https. This will encrypt your mail protecting it from packet sniffers.
  • Check your Security Question. Usually people keep some cryptic password but their security question is too simple to guess. For example, many people keep the security question as the name of their pet or first school. These thing can be easily known by your friends and relatives. If you are an active person on internet these details can be provided by Google itself.

If you are hacked, contact the support immediately otherwise there is a risk that your other accounts might be compromised.

Choose Your Response

Three women met in a restaurant. Yeah u can guess???  Lots of discussions, exchange of news and views, loads of information.  One particular of their discussion caught my attention.  One of the ladies, with lot of interest was sharing some facts about cockroach. With a lot of amazement,  she was telling how a cockroach can run 3 miles in an hour and could live a long time, perhaps a week without its head. It can survive in any climate, in any house condition, inside any crack, etc.

Suddenly, a cockroach flew from nowhere and sat on her.  She started to scream out of fear.  With panic-stricken face and trembling voice,  she started doing stationary jumping with her hands trying to get rid of the cockroach.  The lady finally managed to push the cockroach to another lady in the group.  Now, it was the another lady to continue the drama. The waiter rushed forward to their rescue.  In the relay, the cockroach fell on the waiter.  The waiter stood firm observing its movement on his shirt.  When he has confident enough, he grabbed it with his fingers and threw it out.

As I was seeing those,  few thoughts started wondering, “Was the cockroach responsible for the histrionic behaviour?  If so, then why the waiter was not perturbed? He handled it to near perfection, without any chaos. It is not the cockroach, but the inability of the ladies to handle the disturbance caused by the cockroach to them.”

I realized, “Even in my case then, it is not the shouting of my father that disturbs me, but it is my inability to handle the disturbance caused by his shouting that disturbs me. In all, it is not something that disturbs me, but it is my inability caused by that something that disturbs me. More than the problem, it is my reaction to the problem, which hurts me more.”

A natural question popped up in my mind, “Then, how do I outgrow this limitation?” I understood, “I should not react. I should always respond”. The women reacted, whereas waiter responded. Reactions are instinctive, whereas responses are intellectual. Between the stimuli (what happens to me) and the response (what happens through me) if there is no gap, it creates reaction. But, between the stimuli and response,  if I use the gap to think and contemplate, then I can respond thoughtfully. “An Intelligent person responds; a fool reacts”.

An inspiration to become a SURVIVOR

While you’re sort of looking me over, let me guess what’s creeps your mind. Perhaps some of you here might seem to be excited hearing something inspirational, something that might get through your system from somebody you just came across the corridors of the school or some might think this is another blah, blah or whatever! Part of the program. With whole honesty, when I was invited to speak before this crowd of gorgeous young ladies and handsome gentlemen, I paused for a while and try to collect myself asking, what would exactly inspire OUR youthful mind. I said “OURs” (that includes me) because I felt very young when I am surrounded by teens like you. Exactly, because I believe, I am still part of what they call the generation X, the generation of Ipods and PSP’s, the era of powerful imagination.

When I was your age, many would ask us; do we ever get serious about anything? We’re sometimes mistaken as ‘emo’ because often get too caught up with our emotions. Most of us have hang-ups about getting “in” or simply being cool. We have a lot of insecurities. We want to look good. We want to feel great. We want to explore. We like to take risks for adventure. As for future plans, many may not have even thought of anything serious for college.

The trend never ceases to change. Kung ano ang uso noon, at uso sa inyo, pareho lang ‘yun, uso! But we can always make a difference for a better a change. I believe many of you here experience the same scenario like mine because this is NORMAL, this is the age of “growing up”. Though the difference matter in fashion evolution, your great mind’s eye will bring and make you somebody you want to become when you’re grown up.

I should say, my experiences being like you helped me to be what I am today, I am proud to say that because of the struggles I had during my years like yours, I was able to bring home not just the bacon but the whole luncheon. I finished two courses and landed in a stable career. I was able to stand with the pressures your age encounters. Survivor kung baga, I had open my eyes, and see the bigger picture of my playground, I see that beyond my colorful playhouses, sturdy little tikes, and sand boxes in wild jungle of predators waiting to attack their prey. Guys, If we keep ourselves ready for the attack, we would be able to fight them all and become winners in our own rights when we are grown up.

“Malaki na ako, kaya ko na to!” “Kakainis talaga ang mga mama at papa” “Hay, Naku puro bawal”. These are familiar lines we used to say. We even cannot understand our parents. We hate our teachers because they always reprimand us. We get rebellious and even proud become one kasi nakaksikat tawaging Wow pare Astig!” But if we let ourselves get hooked with it, it will eat us. We might wake up one morning and realize that the world is turning up side down and fate will bring us to nowhere. If we will not build a strong foundation in our growing up stage, we might not be able to make it one day when we need it. That is when I understand why my mom was adamant that I should not go beyond my background so that my wee kindergarten world remains whole and colorful. She was just trying to shield me from the lashing reality I have come to know is filled with different forms of chaos.  This is the time to prepare. A time to be ready. A time to pull our sleeves up, stand firm and face what is ahead of us. We can only enjoy the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow if we start believing and working out the things we need to reach there – and that is making ourselves worthy for that precious price. But remember you will undergo struggles more rigid and tough as that of the stunts of the Pinoy Fear Factor or the challenges the contestants of the Survivor encounter because we will bump into failures not ones but twice… and more.

A story was told about Milton. He knew about failure. He eventually became very famous and very rich, but he understood that life was not a bed of roses. He knew very well how life carries with it the pains of failures, poverty and rejection.

As a boy, he went to work as a printer’s apprentice, but it did not work out. Then he became an apprentice confectioner where he performed better. Working inside a factory manufacturing candies was not easy, but Milton was determined to master the trade.

At age 19 he start his own confectionery business. He worked hard for six years, but the business did not do well, and he finally had to give up. He worked again for another candy company. He kept on trying where another venture failed.

After a string of failures like that, many would have given up. But Milton thought otherwise. He learned from his mistakes. He learned that failure is not fatal. He learned to treat obstacles as stepping stones instead of stumbling blocks. He learned that you never fail until you stop trying. And of course, he kept on learning about confectionery trade, picking up many tricks and inventing new ones by constantly experimenting with formulas and process.

Milton may be seen as a failure, with little book learning and many failed business attempts, yet he went on to become an inventor, entrepreneur, philanthropist and humanitarian. His name was known throughout the world. Thanks to the world famous product that carries his name MILTON SNAVELY HERSHEY was the man who created Hershey’s Milk Chocolate.

This is success story can be your story too. Your time is still to shine. You have the resources that you need and the imagination you can use to become great someday. Let no hindrance be in your way towards success.

We must not be too cozy in our own little boxes that don’t take the challenge in facing any reality that threatens to break our known paradigm. Instead, we must be ready for the big fight and the fight  BEGINS NOW! UNO…DOS…TRES…VAMOS.

BE THE SURVIVOR… THE ULTIMO PARICIPANTE… THE WINNER

Life…

There is no infinity and no eternity. Yet we use those terms as if they are at the end of our vision, a point far far away and yet not that far away. We never relate it to our mortality. It is by far terms that umbrella concepts which are unfathomable.

Life is just like a reel of film, towards the end things happen. But the reel will definitely be cut off  without prior notice. In that respect perhaps life is harsh for not being “happily ever after” unlike the usual cinema endings. My teacher used to tell us that the process of birth and death are simultaneous. They are like two sides of a coin, the moment we are born, we start to die. Our shadow is our death and one day it will come right in front of us and look us in the eye. Those who don’t flinch are those that have no regrets or pricking of conscience. We then brushed it off without much thought. But as life moved on and when cracks began to wither the rose tinted glasses that comes with childhood, realization dawned about the profundity of my teacher’s message. There is such surreality about life and the way we perceive it.

Truth alters with time. How we perceive the world changes as we grow. We begin with life, as we grow we begin to exist with priorities that mar our general perception.Towards the end we go back to life, we discard our youthful arrogance and accept our mistakes and misconceptions. Towards the end we realize what is truly valuable and how this world of senses has taken away from us that treasure of life. It is such a vicious cycle. The old tell the young through many advices falling on deaf ears. Perhaps God has created youthful arrogance to keep the cycle going, for amusing realizations and metamorphosis to happen as dusk arrives.

I Wish..

Closing my eyes and feeling the wind play with my hair,

Hands stretched out to touch the sky,

Today I feel like I can wish for everything

and on opening my eyes it will be mine.

I wish for the sparkling stars

that hang like dewdrops in a black velvety night

Maybe they can tell me secrets

of the oceans, the land, the raging lights

I wish for the sound of silence

that is the easiest language to speak,

I can lend my ear to the trees,

and they will tell me what they feel.

I wish for the power of love

that encompasses heaven and earth

for that undefinable weapon

that kills, wounds, heals without words

Still Waters…

Still waters; calm waters

Emitting tranquility

Beautifying the serenity…

Still waters; transparent waters

Enormous clarity

In life’s nitty gritty

Still waters as reflections in mirror

Whether stream, lake or river

Still waters; depth profound

Holding vast treasures unfound

In still waters boat sails quietly

It doesn’t panic or shake; not even slightly

Still waters say things are going usual

No disturbances; nothing’s unusual

No ripples; no stifles

No occurrence; no turbulence

In them birds flutter their wings

For the waters pleasure they bring

Do ask yourself- why’s there stillness so?

Is it the aftermath of a storm so?

Or is it the advent of a stormy show?

Let these bounty waters be still

Ask a painter if  his platter he could fill

And sketch & color these elements still

Pat will come a reply- “yes I will;

With my hand firm and still”.

Wedding Dress

Maya was so happy. She was getting married in a month’s time. Like all village belles, the marriage day was something that Maya had dreamt about from childhood. It did not matter, that she had never before seen the face of the person that she was going to get married to. This is how her mother and her mother got married and this is how every other woman in the village got married. Still she was happy, in fact, her mind was conditioned by the traditions of the village life to be and feel happy at this time.

However, there still lingered a hint of sadness in her little heart. Her father had left them more than four years ago and since then her mother had led a life of abstinence and of minimal comfort, never socialising with people of the village nor enjoying life as she could. On this occasion Maya decided to cheer her up.

Her wedding sari, already bought, was a deep hue of crimson and was striking. It was the most beautiful thing that Maya had laid her eyes upon. Maya pleaded her mother to wear it and see how it looked on her. Her mother refused to wear it, being deprived from worldly pleasures for so long she could not even think of wearing it. However, on further pleading, her mother relented. She wore the sari and looked like an angel in the eyes of her daughter. She convinced her mother to keep it on for the night.

At night, a knock on the door of their house woke Maya’s mother up. She left a sleeping Maya to respond to the call. As she saw through the eye-hole, she froze. She could not open the door. She should not open the door. “I can feel your presence. I have waited for long enough my love; please do not say no this time.” Said the voice of the sturdily built village Sarpanch. “You must not punish yourself for so long for no fault of yours. Please do open the door and come with me.” Maya could move now. The gentle voice of the man outside swayed her into opening the door. She covered her head with the sari and hand-in-hand they fled into the fields.

Alas, they were unaware of two watching eyes in the darkness.

Next morning, there was a huge crowd in the front of the house. People shouting, alleged that Maya had slept with an unknown man in the fields. One man said that she had unmistakably seen Maya in her new wedding sari. Maya could not speak. Nor could she meet her mother’s eyes. The wedding was cancelled. People cursed her and called her names, but Maya could not even defend her innocence. In the confusion, she slowly slipped away from the crowd. Later that day, her body was found on the rail tracks.

Holinza

Merry Christmas Ashwini!
Merry Christmas Mona!!
But Ashwini, why are you so sad? We may not be Christians, but it is Christmas time. Moreover it must be holinza for you. You should be doubly happy.
It is Christmas time. All right. But what is this holinza?
Ashwini, my dear, for you Central Government servants it is holiday bonanza, Straight four days holidays. Holiday bonanza means holinza.
Oh. But why are you jealous about our holinza Mona darling? You are also having holidays.
Yes, but these are the only vacations that we get in a year. Round the year we have to slog out like a donkey. As a reward we get these few holidays in a year. I match it with holidays of my family. O.K. but, forget about me. Tell me why are you so sad at the time of this festive holinza?
Mona, I might be having holinza, but so are others and this means people are out on the streets enjoying to their hearts content and the poor police force is trying to cope up with this pressure forgetting all about their holidays or their family’s holinza.
Oh ! Oh! That means Ranvir is again away doing his duty. And you and kids are all alone home waiting for him for hours and hours together.
Yes. This is not the only time it has been happening. It is always the same. His promise to stay at home with us on holidays, his cancellation of leave, children’s tear stained faces and the perennial guilt in Ranvir’s eyes. He is torn between his work and family.
But then why does he not quit the job? He can get a big paying job anytime. What is the big deal about being a civil servant?
You won’t understand it Mona. Neither did I initially. But over the years I have come to understand about Ranvir’s commitment. You know it is because of these cops and the armed forces that we are able to live so peacefully.
I know. And after 26/11 people have also started realizing it better. Ashwini, your cell phone is ringing. You answer it, I will push off. I have some shopping to do.
Hello, Hello, Ashwini, this is Ranvir.
Tell me dear, how are you? You are sounding tired. Did you not have had any lunch?
I will have my lunch later. Don’t worry. But how are you and kids? I miss you all. Today is holiday and I can not spend time with you. I feel so guilty.
We too miss you Ranvir, but don’t worry. We will manage. You concentrate on your work. We are proud of you.
Ashwini, I know I expect too much from you, but I want you to do something. Will you do it?
Tell me Ranvir, I will surely do it. You also know it well.
Ashwini, you remember Martha, the lady constable in our team who died in the 26/11 attack? Her husband Robert is also in my team.
Of course I remember. How can I forget the valour of that lady? I can not forget her two small kids trying to shake up her dead body trying to wake her up.
It is about these children that I want to talk to you.
What happened?
Actually we had given Robert leave so that he could spend the Christmas with his kids. But then as you know comes an emergency and all our leave, holidays, etc. vanish in a thin air.
Don’t I know it well? But tell me what the problem is now?
Well, we had to ask Robert to come and do his duty today also. But what about his kids? Where will they stay? There is no one to look after them. He has brought them to the police station. But I want that these kids should be able to spend a proper Christmas. Will you do it, please?
Come on Ranvir, please don’t say please. I will be, rather we will be very happy. Kids are also listening to our conversation and frantically gesturing me to tell you that we will arrange for a proper Christmas celebration for them. Just send them home immediately. Now it is going to be real holinza.
Holinza? What is that?
You won’t understand. But now the holidays have brought in real bonanza. And we are going to enjoy our holinza.