Monday, February 28, 2011

A While Back...

This is the only kind of household wildlife I had to deal with, give or take a few houseflies.
These pics are from the day we cleaned up and put to order the garden of our home in Melbourne, before handing over the keys.

Look at what we found hiding in a corner, while removing the weeds.

Something we could happily put on our palms, and be friendly with.....

..... but that's not all.
It was never me, who was brave enough to do it.
Now see whose hand the snail rested on!

The BB was learning about animals and their lifecycles at his nursery then, and was very excited with the snails. We even put them in a mug of water for a while, and treated them like our pets, till the poor creatures escaped for dear life. :)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Backyard Wildlife

I have never ceased to be amazed at the wonderful wildlife I have been seeing around, since I shifted into my new home. Some of them land up in my own backyard, and I managed to click a few. What I have not been able to capture however, are the gorgeous butterflies, that I see all around the place. Larger than the average size, and what vibrant colours! When I manage to get shots of that, I am definitely going to share them here. And there are birds too, white cockatoos, turkeys, and some birds I have no clue about. However, these are the only ones I have photographic evidence of.

On the grill of the door leading to our backyard, one evening.

This one had a huge web when we shifted in, and unfortunately we had to get rid of it, to make the place safe.
Another huge spider.

The gorgeous bush tailed possum, we spot around the house often after dark.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Bulletin Board Friends

It worries me, it bothers me, and when I let it grow, it claws at me heart. No, I am no perfect person, I know it. And for all the flaws I have, I used to take relationships and friendships seriously, a bit too much at times I think. But experience made me harder, the part of the heart that was soft and nurtured loving relationships, kept getting hurt and healing time and again, and finally the scab never went away. It replaced, the softness there, with its hard shell, and is now there to stay. But as they say, old wounds hurt more than new ones, because their roots still lie within.

What prompts me to say this? Well, besides, it being a totally crappy day today, its the second time this week, I received communication from someone, who does not have time to even send out a one line e-mail in a whole year. It is strange how people, who cannot spare five minutes in a whole year, suddenly think of me when important happy events come into their life, and expect me to go all ballistic about it. Honestly, I am happy for you, but it is beyond me now to go all gooey over your happiness, because you are one of the reasons I have scab instead of softness in a part of my heart. And well, yes, I remember. Am I being vindictive I wonder really, but this is my natural response, because I am hurt and withdrawn.

One of my oldest friends, who pretty much takes no efforts ever to stay in touch, facebook et all, all being in place. Every time I have called her, she has told me how busy she is with life, and cannot find time. Truth be told I have heard this from many people, and it either means the person thinks I have no life and hence can devote all my time to them, or they simply don't want to stay in touch. It could be either, so again after repeated mistakes, I have learnt to step away, and let them lead their really busy lives. And yes, I don't believe anyone is ever that busy!! Coming back to my friend, I last spoke to her on Diwali, when I called, which was I think almost a year since I had last spoken to her, and I admonished her for not staying in touch. She said things would change, which obviously did not. And I finally decided I had tried, enough and was just not willing to be anyone's doormat anymore, so I gave up. It hurt more because she to me always was a dear friend, and to know how little I must have meant to her, to not even try to maintain a relationship, is what pricked me the most I believe. That was that, till last week, I got a cryptic, telegram like mail from her, telling me she was having a baby. 2 lines, and that was it. I know its mean, but I am too hardened after the many many years that things have been this way between us, to know how to react. I felt like an in-law, whom, one needs to inform of such happenings in their life, no matter how unwillingly its done. I replied back, congratulating her husband and her, and just could not go on any further, because my resentment still stands strong. And I wonder what is the point of it all anyway, if we are not even going to be in touch. I hated myself for being this way. And yes, what I thought was a closed chapter was reopened with pricking and clawing yet again. I wish I was bigger, I could let go, and reply with a huge long mail, and maybe more, but it has been so so so many times now, that I just don't have the will left to be the one trying to make it work, while she as always remain busy.' I should have anyways seen this coming since the many times you have happily forgotten even my birthday, to drop me a line of wishes. I just feel like a fool, that I let you mean so much to me, when I did not mean a dime to you. I feel like a fool, that I actually missed your wish, even though I had so many others wishing me truly and deeply.

The second mail arrived today. Again an old friend, from work. He had moved away and gotten too busy to stay in touch. Many many mails and messages remain unanswered over the years. And today there is a mail saying he is getting married, and with a positive claim, knowing I will have loads to ask him, and that he is eagerly waiting for me queries. I understand his excitement and joy, wanting to share it with someone, but then why me? Cannot just drop someone off, and then pick them up from wherever you like, whenever you like. I just did not know what to say. I congratulated him, and replied, saying I unfortunately have not much to ask, but would love to hear whatever he has to tell.

I realised a lot of things from these interactions.

The older a relationship, the greater is its power over us. I was more worked up by the first mail than the second. I have more resentment towards my oldest friend than the guy who I worked with.

Relationship dynamics don't change much, unless both people are ready to make it work. One person cannot work for two in any relationship.

While it may feel good to be the better person, trying your best in a friendship, persisting, eventually it breaks down my self esteem, and makes me feel like a door mat being trampled on, when the other person will not as much as turn their head, to maintain it.

Closure works for me, when I stay away from the source of hurt, it comes back with a bang, if the person comes back.

I have become a lot harder, and I am not happy about that, over the years. I hate being resentful and mean, I hate it.

I want to believe its their loss and not mine, but it is me who feels hurt and not them. I don't know what karmic debt I owe to these people. But I have paid enough really!

If the basic values between me and someone is different, its best not let the person into my heart and mind, because no matter how good things seem to begin with, eventually, we will grow apart, and I for one will always hate that.

I don't expect people to call me everyday, I understand that it gets too expensive for a lot of my friends in other parts of the world. But how much does an e-mail cost you? Once a month? No one in the world can honestly claim that they cannot spare 5 minutes in a whole month, so please stop giving me stupid excuses. And how hard is it to hit the reply button on your e-mail, and jot down a few lines to a truly concerned person. A lot possibly, when the person is a bother more than a boon. Good enough. Let me walk away now. I am trying hard to maintain control and not tell you all of this personally, because I don't want to be the prick in the balloon of your joy. I just wish I had it in me, to be indifferent enough, to not be bothered at all by all of this. I hate this state of resentment, I just hate it!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Darn these kids!

Do you know I have actually started writing posts, that I am not publishing? I cannot believe I am actually doing that, but I am. But I have a reason, and I will tell you. These are posts I write with honest thought and passion, mostly with strong opinions for or against something. Yes, I know they are my thoughts, this is my space, and I can put it up. But I don't want to. Simply because even though I truly believe in what I write, I know others who might be hurt by what I say, and I don't mean to do that. And so while I am getting the freedom and actually writing it out, I am not putting it up there, simply because hurting anyone is not the purpose, my views are mine, and others have every right to think and feel differently. Isn't it?

So anyways, for someone who can barely manage to type in two para posts once a week or even less, that is quite a luxury as you might guess. I am trying to figure out my son these days. He has suddenly developed a lot of opinions, and wants. The other day, the GP had the most hilarious conversation with him.

GP - Do you want a dog?
BB - No, I want a Possum!
(possum for a pet?????)
After a while, the GP pursues,

GP - BB, do you want a dog?
BB - No, I want a horse.
And since then a horse is what it has been. The GP ofcourse is faking desperation, to hide his amusement, and wondering aloud, from where in earth would he get a horse, and then where he would keep them.

The BB also has a new passtime, filling and emptying every bottle, sipper, flask he can lay his hands on in the house, in an unending cycle. Yes, I am terribly worried about my water bill people. However, coming to the point, I have been on a constant screeching spree of , "BB, stop wasting water!" Not that it has much effect, but atleast I try. So the other day, the GP was in the kitchen, cleaning up his barbeque grilling plate in the sink, and the BB pipes in, "Mumma, papa is wasting water." I think I was just shocked, stunned, and I could not control my laughter. How quickly do these people connect the dots???

Thursday, February 10, 2011

All Grown Up

Its been a while, but I wanted the whole thing to settle down before I announced it out and loud. Yes its the BB, and he is all grown up. Because he sleeps alone in his own room now. Its been almost a month now. He falls asleep on his own, I just get him ready, tuck him in and wish him good night. For a while there is blabbering and chattering, but then it becomes all quiet, and I go, cover him up again, and switch off the brighter of his two night lights.

Well there was a heat wave post cyclone Yasi, and we could not sleep without the AC, so the BB was promptly brought back on our bed, and we, the parents, loved it, the BB on the other hand was not too happy with the idea, of leaving his own bed. But then it rained and cooled down and he is back in his room, on his bed. But for now, its such a big grown up step. My lil baby sleeping through the night on his own, who would have thought this day would come!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Taking The Bull By The Horns

- A Confession

There are always fears, but it is upto us to decide how we deal with it. We all have various things that motivate us, those that impede us, and then its upto us how we use it all. I am beating around the bush, yes, so let me just say this. I am learning to drive. Yes, finally. It is one of my biggest fears, followed closely by swimming. I am old, with creaking joints, which need regular maintenance, and yet I am finally fighting my fear.

I have ridden two wheelers, the basic ones without gears, years back when I was in college, always borrowed from a friend, and I have managed to bang them up twice. So you get my fear right? But now its high time I battled it, because its my son who needs me to be able to drive more than myself. In a place where auto rickshaws are not around, and buses are not very frequent, one cannot always rely on one's feet, to take them places. What when it rains, or its too hot, or if someone is not feeling well. Walking cannot be the only possible solution always. The BB will begin school next year, and I need to know basic, for use driving. And that is my greatest motivation factor.

Had my first professional coaching yesterday. Lets just say, my teacher was not impressed. But, this is not something where I have an option, I just have to go up there and do it. Might have to work a lot harder than everyone else, but I have to do it. Wish me luck people, I need loads of it. And hoping that actually saying it out aloud here, will mean, that I will try extra hard, to save me some shame, and actually be allowed to drive on the roads, sooner rather than later.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Time Moves Relatively

Have you ever met people after a really long time, and wondered whether the time never moved for them, or maybe not for you? Two ends of the same spectrum if I may say so. Facebook, to me is a necessary evil. Evil, because it leads me onto waste huge amounts of my valuable time, updating status messages or commenting on those of friends, and necessary, because its the easiest way for me to stay in touch with so many friends who live so far away. I digress. It is also a platform to find long lost friends, or those we have been out of touch with. And often the friend request there, leads to exchange of other contact details, e-mails and even phone calls.

And while its great fun to re-connect with friends, some of them end up leaving me astonished at how time has moved at vastly different paces for the two of us. Recently it was a guy I knew in college, used to be quite a buddy of mine. A fun loving flirt, always upto something, that's the kind of guy he was. And, almost ten years later, that is exactly how he still seems to be, being married and everything. And while it has been nice reconnecting, it is difficult to find a common ground any longer. While he still lives in a world, which is full of college trivialities, or atleast that is how it seems to me now, I have moved on so so much. He talks of our classmates in college, still in terms of crushes, good looking chics or cool dudes. He still talks about who had affairs with whom back then, who made it, who broke up, and such stuff. While its always fun to know how old friends are doing, after a while, it just got boring, because all of it is just so much in the past for me now. And more so the details, which have no importance at all. I really wonder how his wife deals with it, has he sucked her into the world of our college with all his tales? And mostly I wondered if time has stood still for him all these years, while it rushed by me.

And then my qualms were put to rest. Found an old old school friend recently, and God! I would not recognise her in a million years, if I met her now. The shy, pretty girl, a top scorer, she looks like a ramp scorching top model. Its been a metamorphosis like none I have seen before. She is still a brainy babe, with her LSE degree and everything, but is she a super hottie or what? What wouldn't the boys from school, give to have been a better friend of hers. I so always expected her to turn out to be the scholarly type, working in a big bank, being the best, which I guess she still is, but what I had never expected was this absolute glam doll, hanging around at night clubs and discs each night. Well, I afcourse am a social butterfly like no other, because I was and will be a caterpillar all my life in that area, and hence while I felt great catching up with a really dear friend from school after ages, I felt lost after a while, self conscious and more. With her it felt like time had stood still for me, while it simply rushed by her. But whatever, it is great great fun reconnecting with her!

And while on the topic of facebook related things, one of my pet peeves is people having public opinion polls on the looks of their spouse. Putting up a photo and actually asking something as 'duh' as, Isn't he/she cute? on a public website.... I would not have believed it possible, had it not been done by people on my own friend list, whom I readily dropped after the incident! Why, why and oh why, would you so objectify your own spouse, no matter what a looker he/she is. Please don't do it!

In very very happy news of national pride though, came across this is the newspaper today, and am so so so proud of India, and what to say of Mr. Chandrakant Singh, who really has done what others only dream of. He has set up a top notch, school of international standards in a village in Bihar, where the students are taught through video conferencing, by some of the best in their professions. This is what true patriotism, and a real desire to do something leads to. While we still languish in our worlds, of material desires, and material gains, its people like this, who give me hope for mankind, for India, and inspire me to try harder, do more. And yes, the true friend, teacher or guide is not one, who helps you whenever you need it, but rather the one who provides you with skills that let you fulfill your own needs and enables you to fight your own battles. And that is what impresses me most about this school, it is not dependent on the charity of others, but is able to sustain itself.