Thursday, November 10, 2016

Catching Sunny Spots

There is a widespread sense of bewilderment at unfolding political events around the world (including our very own country where the government declared overnight that Indian currency of high denominations will be invalid henceforth until new notes are issued).  People are scrambling to the banks and elsewhere, and no one at the receiving end is happy with this.

Despite this chaos, at the personal level, there have been many small sunny spots in my life.  I apologise for taking so long to write a blog, but I just had no time and energy!

We spent the days before Diwali with family in Delhi - doting grandparents, aunts, cooks and drivers from my little son's perspective more than made up for the hazy skies and heavy traffic.  It was nice to catch up on people's news but for me the biggest blessing came in the form of pain relieving pills, which my sister in law presented me (the best Diwali gift I ever received!).  Apparently she has been suffering from migraines (similarly triggered) for ages and this basic pill, a combination of caffeine and pain killers, is very effective.  In the medical reviews I read, several people said that it had changed their lives, and I agree.  I realize now how much of my physical energy (apart from a sense of worry and foreboding that would creep into my mind) was going into just dealing with the pain.  In my mind, my visualization has worked wonders!

Another high point for me was talking to our old cook again.  He is a master chef and was with us for many years, providing perfectly cooked (and served) meals and in particular, nourishing and tasty food for me during and after my pregnancy.  He was diagnosed with throat cancer over a year ago and we took him for radiation and chemotherapy, which he withstood courageously.  But the aftermath left him unable to eat any solids.  I have just introduced him to a reassuring and competent Ayurvedic doctor (not in a hurry and without any room full of intimidating equipment and spiel on how if it won't kill you it'll make you stronger) to help relieve the side effects of the allopathic treatment.  Our cook is mentally more positive and cheerful after many months and we are all hoping for the best.

Soon after we returned to Bangalore, I read about a story writing contest (for children's fiction).  For a couple of months now, I have been yearning to write (and my mind is full of stories that I haven't had a chance to put into words).  This seemed to be a good place to start.  As I was thinking about it, my son (who loves books) suddenly said, "Let's read 'Marco Polo Gets A Job!'"  There is no such book in our house, so I decided that I would write one.  Thus began my tryst with Marco Polo.

Then it was school admission time.  Ideally I wanted to keep my son home for another year but it seems hard to break into the system later on and school hours suddenly jump from one year to the next.  Not wanting too drastic a transition for my son, we decided to enrol him for the coming summer in a small, friendly school.  It took some time to find one, but we have found a warm welcoming place.  Of course we'll only know later on how it works out, but it's nice not to have to enrol in an large assembly line school.  A sunny spot on the side is that they are (at this stage) very easy about taking leave to travel.  We do tend to travel (for short periods) to different parts of India and the world, and it's nice not to have to jump through too many hoops to do this.

Next month onwards, there's more travel (my son appears to be a good traveller so we decided not to hold back any more) - Kanpur in the freezing winter, Delhi when it thaws, Kolkata in the late spring and perhaps London in the summer if we get a chance.  Let's catch the sunny spots as and when we find them.

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