Thursday, December 27, 2012

Divine togetherness...

Medium: artist water colors and waterproof black drawing ink

Monday, December 3, 2012

Peacock Rangoli ..

Material:Colored saw dust and ground marble and marigold petals.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

This Diwali..

The outline .

All set .

Just to show the size of the rangoli.

Six hours of enjoyable work done single handedly.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Khwajaa mere khwaaja....

Sufi Dancers : A simple water color and pen creation .

Monday, September 3, 2012


 I read this tremendously interesting post by the premium blogger Krish Ashok -The Expectant Father.

'Expecting', I guess, is a cool term  for the whole ordeal of harbouring , nurturing , labouring and finally birthing a brand new human being. Most of the  events of 9 months are  associated with the mother(for obvious reasons).The fathers are somewhere in the backdrop. The natural responsibility and the priviledge of childbirth has been bestowed on women and clearly the post highlighted the dilemma of the male of the species to figure out where to butt in.

Since my work deals with the glowing , growing , groaning and finally going to labour rooms 'would- be- moms' I inevitably interact with  and observe the ‘Expectant fathers’('EF'). This brilliant post triggered in me the desire to organize my observations and highlight the expectant fathers, while the real work is being done by the wonderful moms .

THE JITTERY 'EF'- These are the shivering kinds .They are on their toes since the conception and are an obstetrician’s nightmare. Give them your number and they would make your life miserable. Such EF’s would enter the hospital yelling  more than their wives and demanding attention and creating so much fuss that you would think it’s time to take the mommy to the labour room. But don’t lose your better senses and stay calm. It might just be a 3 months pregnancy with an unrelated gastric pain.

THE CLUELESS SHADOW 'EF'-  These are usually young guys in early twenties and have a battalion of concerned relatives.Sometimes accompanied by an elder male who is a ‘padosi’ or a ‘relative’ who has some remote knowledge of medicine and no knowledge of childbirth .But he uses his 'antennas' to grasp all the messages you convey, regarding the plan of delivery and the condition of the mother and the baby. In the middle of the long drawn information you search for the EF ... “who is the husband... I need him to sign here ...” and he finally emerges from the dense population of relatives with a scared distant look and probably with cobwebs in his throat for not having spoken for eternity .

THE TOO CONCERNED 'EF'- He  won’t leave his wife and every five minutes he would ask ‘what’s happening. ...Is everything ok’ with a worried face. You need to teach them relaxation techniques or intimidate them to stay quiet until spoken to.

THE SLEEPY-HEAD 'EF'- These are exact opposites of former category. They suffer from perpetual sleep deprivation and would drop dead snoring at the least opportunity. While the wife moans and groans he would come to tell you the problem and then snooze.Around an hour later emerge again with the same complaint and you would give him the breaking news that all concerns have been attended and the drugs would show effect soon. He will snooze again.

THE ABSENTEE 'EF'-These are navy men, army men, touring men.... and men who are in a long distant relationship with their  wives, during the pregnancy ,as the' would- be -mother' has shifted to 'her mother' for the much needed care ... and then she lands up in labour away from the expected date.The EF gives moral support via telecommunication. Long live technology.

THE RTI ACTIVIST ' EF'-This one enters the hospital and would engage you with conversations of unrelated idealism. Fault finding would be a characteristic. For the nine months he may have neglected to take his wife for proper check-ups but he would have the exact formula how to run a hospital well and provide super-sonic speed services and five star comfort even when he is  paying for the economy class. When they leave they would leave a long ‘Chitthi’ of complains . But then you are really relieved that he finally left. In all the while he was not too concerned about the wife or the baby and while she struggled to feed the newborn he was busy fiddling with the laptop.

THE SUSPICIOUS 'EF'-The name says it. He would be full of doubts for whatever you say or do. He would take eons to give consents for procedures and would refuse to understand an emergency situation.He would inevitably think that the obstetrician has mastered malpractice . He would bring in a distant relative doctor who would give advice on the management plan.He would be keen to file a lawsuit at any opportunity and would never be grateful no matter how hard you work for the mother and the baby.However characteristically he would keep coming back  even after the delivery and would demand medical attention . That’s one leech of a situation.

THE WELL-READ 'EF'- They surprise you with the immense knowledge they have gained via internet and books while their wives were growing through the nine months . They would make sure to understand everything that is going on and always make an informed decision.

THE FRIENDLY 'EF'- They are happy being in the hospital. They are extremely happy when the baby comes.By the time the baby comes they have become friends with everyone in the hospital. They could be seen distributing extra sweets to all their’' hospital acquired friends' .

THE COOL 'EF'- They are simply cool ! Neither hassled nor create hassel. They take it as it comes .They would keep the atmosphere light and make the wife smile through her tears.

I saved the best for  the last and with this one I conclude the list.

THE DOTING' EF'- You admire the guy for his presence and patience . He is a lion . He would stand by his wife through the ordeal (even when she kicks and curses him while she labours). He would take up a fight with you if you fail to give enough attention to his lioness and expectant cub. But he would however patch up soon and give you a sunshine thank you when you hand him over his cub. This one would take care of the smallest details .He would even tag along you on the rounds just to get entry in the  NICU to spend some more time with his little one who needs intensive care.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Candle Light...

(I have scribbled numerous experiences as a doctor on a medical site called Rxpg. It is easier to say your stories to doctors and budding doctors. On an open platform like this I always felt a grave responsibility in writing medical stuff. I feared creating a wrong image or bringing forth the wrong message as medicine is a highly specialised field and intricately related to human life. The limited understanding of a non-medico may alter the message. However after several years of contemplating I am sharing the most popular post I wrote some 7 years back . It does reflect the lack of resources and the poor working condition in government set ups and the hard work resident doctors put in to provide healthcare and learn amidst this scarcity and chaos.I take refuge in humour though mostly I lack it :) :). )

Living in india you learn to adjust with loads of things.One of them is power cuts.They are inevitable.Specially when you have a big exam ahead .You may make arrangements but things just go topsy turvy.I recall during my first year of MBBS we had absolutely  no power cuts in our hostel so we gals didnt give it a thought that the unthinkable may happen just before our physiology professional .It happened.We were shocked to know that none of us had candles.....khair it was not tht bad besides we had a good laugh after a bit of panicking..... 

Now what is bad is when you hve 10 first day post operative patients in the ward  to look after and you are posted as an Emergency medical officer;.the first one to see the patients and admit as well take care of the post operative patients.That day  there is a major power failure.That very day the generator refuses to work and with a candle in your hand you are (Florence Nightingalish ) trying to take care  of every possible complaint  of the patients. Changing drips and ensuring the antibiotics are adminitered at the right time  in between also making emergency admissions.Amidst all this you hear a post operative patient wailing and threatening to jump of the bed complaining of excruciating pain. You hold a candle upto her face and squint while the relatives panic. You use your better senses and discover that the patient failed to pass urine and look for a bladder lump.Happy with yourself you immediately catheterize the patient while one of the female relatives hold the candle for you. Dexterously you evacuate around half a litre of urine and get a blessing from the relieved patient. Now this isn't that bad after all. 

However the nights at the hospital are always long and eventful. 'Bad' was on its way to the hospital that same sweaty night as my candle fought bravely with the wind.She arrives . The lights are dim . I could hardly see her face . She could hardly stand even with support . She was pregnant and bleeding .I ask her to sit but I could hardly go near the patient that I hear a thud and a splash. 

I am standing with a candle in my hand and between her and me is a pool of blood which in the candle light seem like black molten coal. She collapses . I postpone my collapsing and without delay rush her to the labour room .

 Now in this scene there are no showers of blessings for me. The labour room is flooding with patients, spilling with patients , groans and moans and frantically running doctors trying to work their best. But lets not forget that it was a sweaty summer night and the labour room just had a few candles more than the emergency room. The heat and the dark and the patient load had turn my seniors into steaming kettles ready to burst at the slightest provocation . As I barge in with a pregnant patient pouring blood I am hit with a zillion angry words and scoldings . I start to lose orientation and frantically fill in the admission notes accelerating my escape from the wrath. As I step out I feel I was in an out of an oven and just escaped hell's fire. 

"Yeah this was bad" I self talked looking at the moon peeping from the window and  rushed  back to the emergency room for more ordeals. 

That was one night.Then there was another such night.When the lights went off but the generator worked thankfully.Two patients  were in active labour.I was with my senior and our counterparts were  getting their four hours relieving. My Senior asked me  to do an examination and I found that the baby was coming and we wash up immediately for the delivery after giving a call to the paediatricians.As we are about to deliver her the  generator betrays us !!!!  lights go off and we struggle in the dim light of the candle. But I guess it was not enough of an ordeal. I am holding the just delivered  baby and suddenly my senior realises that the other patient is ready to deliver . Now this is really bad... nervous bad... frustrating bad...!!!!!

My sleepy counterpart is immediately called for help. The other baby delivers and the sleepy head confuses the scissors with the clamp . Anyways a 'growl' from the senior makes her realise the mistake in time. So three doctors with a couple of candles and a bit of chaos end up with  two successful candle light deliveries .......great!! fantastic!!!!

Moral of the story :No matter how bad things may get....they can still get worse..... and you may still end up sayingWOW !!! AWESOME!!!icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif

Rain is here.. :)

Rain came. With thunder and hydro power mercilessly revealing the poor drainage system of the city again. So after the much revelling in the first shower I was wondering how to step out of the house . The car wasn't happy with all the water between the wheels and it had no chances of turning into a submarine.

 The earth had turn moist and wet and soggy and inspired all the earthworms to announce their existence as they literally crawled bidirectionally and threatened to invade the house. After living around 20 years on upper floors in government houses  our eyes opened to all the problems of grass roots as this is our first monsoon in our own house (we shifted recently).

I was still twinkling my eyes over the fresh brown crawlers as the last I saw them was in the biology lab in 12th standard . I dissected 7 of them  just to get one perfect dissection. They were all dead, soaking in a tub of formalin and pretty bloated and pale unlike the live ones .

 So we have been shooing away earthworms , restricted to our house and just cleaning and cleaning 'cos it's totally messy and at present I am on sneezing spree . Wow! two days back I was eagerly waiting for rain and when it came ....

Enough of narrating the messy stuff. I love rains and  I am happy that it rained . I am glad I dont need the air conditioner anymore so I need not be confined to my room. I have spent a large part of the past two days gazing at the sky and feeling the breeze on my face ....

Everything is so beautiful , lush and green. My scorched heart is feeling all refreshed.

The best part was a plate of hot steaming pakodas and chai with family on the balcony on the first monsoon evening.

Despite all the nagging about the mess around I hope we all can see the beauty of the rains. Enjoy the drenching, rain coats , sharing umbrellas and floating paper boats . Happy Monsoon!!!

Next I am wishing for a Rainbow....

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Waiting for Rains...

I been away for a pretty longtime from words . Probably Calvin says it all for me . You can't just turn creativity like a faucet :).

 It's mostly like unexpected rain for me. Like the monsoon this time the dry spell has extended a bit . Hoping for a thunder shower soon !

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Teach like a Lion....

His voice had an amazing enthusiasm. It exuded the knowledge and command he had on the subject. Anatomy lecture hall at KGMC animated and came to life  when Prof. Mahdi Hasan delivered lectures . 

Though he was retired, by the time we joined the college back in 1999 , but his love for teaching medical students brought him back to the lecture theatres as an honorary professor. 
His initial lectures for our batch was on Histology. I always had trouble with the microscope but I loved his lectures. More than the content of the lectures his passion for teaching mesmerised  me and I hated to miss any of his lectures. 

The best was when he taught us anatomy of the brain. 

The day of the lecture  he entered the  lecture hall  with a human brain on a tray and a large dissection knife. He sat down with an easy smile and started slicing precise sections at different levels of the brain and it seemed like the text book had come alive. 

We were all enthralled by his method of teaching. His loud clear voice reached the last benches ... no 'straining to hear' required. He would teach actively moving around making dramatic gestures with his hands ... almost like a seasoned actor on the stage or a musician charting the depths of music or a magician creating a spell. No one could doze in his lectures ( an impossible thing to do in his class). He taught us the neurological pathways, one of the toughest things to grasp , by making us Role play! What fun was that : ). 

He enjoyed and relished every bit of his teaching life. He had his eureka moments during teaching, like a yogi would get enlightenment during meditation. Difficult concepts spontaneously simplified themselves as he taught. 

The best thing about this passionate professor of ours was that he always said and lived by it... 

“Teach like a Lion but ask like a goat...” (the emphasis should be on teaching and not setting a tough question paper.) 

But what  motivated me to write all this after 13 years ? 

It was a picture circulating on the internet that I stumbled upon to my great delight. Our beloved professor was receiving Padma Shree from the President (the first one to receive it in the field of anatomy ). It was an immensely  proud moment and I felt totally thrilled . 

 In a time when teacher student relationship has lost it's sheen and education has become a business we Georgians are lucky to have had the opportunity to gain knowledge from a teacher like Prof. Mahdi Hasan.

This is my way of saying that I am privileged and blessed  to be his student and he totally deserves this honor.

Monday, May 7, 2012

The Dark Truth

I am really excited after watching the first episode of Satyamev Jayate. It not only has great substance but covers an issue in a wholesome manner. I am so glad that it started with an issue that is immensely close to my heart. I wanted to write on the issue of female infanticide and foeticide but all I could scribble was a story titled Dear daughter. I would like to congratulate Aamir Khan and the team of Satayamev Jayate to have lived upto it's promotion and airing a talk show on national television that touches the soul of India and brings out the real face of our society.
The first time I got the whole picture of the issue (despite being a doctor and more so an obstetrician in making I  wasn’t aware of what heinous crimes my fellow doctors were capable of) when randomly I bought a book named “Dissappearing daughters “ at the airport while waiting for my  flight. The book has a Prologue by Dr. Abdul Kalam  and written by Gita Arvamudan , a journalist.

 It starts from the authors journey to a village in Tamil Nadu where female infanticide was so rampant that there was news of  tiny skeletons being found. That was back in 90s . Today of course with technology at hand and portable ultrasound machines  foeticide is more common. There is a whole list of facts in this bookthat took me aback... some of which surfaced in the show Satyamev Jayate
  1.      I always thought South Indian population was better educated and it was the North Indian poor states with rampant practice of  dowry  where this crime happened.

Correction: Some South Indian states  have a very deeply embedded dowry system and infanticides were pretty common. Though the dark truth was fiercely guarded.The law if enforced usually caught the  mother who at the end of the day had no claim on her own body and was already a victim.

          2.The doctors involved work in a nexus as a business and were untouched despite the relevant punishable laws. I knew this one but I had no clue about how deeply set this trend was and how easily someone trained to save lives could indulge in  murdering humans in utero. May be I am naive
but it was the hardest fact to digest. Makes me really sad.

3.       I thought that such things would happen in case of uneducated people with lesser means to support a living as they can’t afford dowries in the future.

Correction: These incidences were more among educated people with good standard of living. It is more problem of a patriarchal mindset rather than education level. Besided the technology is more easily available to the ‘educated ‘class.                                                                                                                                

4.       I thought women of lower socio-economic status suffered from this injustice.
Correction- Women of higher social strata are no exception. I was shocked to know that NRI women were brought to India for sex determined abortions as it was not easily available in other parts of the world.
Satyamev Jayate interviewed Dr. Mitu who was forced and then tricked to determine the sex of her babies . Then she was forced to abort the twin girls she was pregnant with. She is a doctor . Her husband is an orthopaedic surgeon and there is a long list of well educated people with Phd’s and what not in her in-laws. This is unbelievable.

5.       The fact that sex ratio per thousand when converted into absolute numbers could be such scary monster figure. Aamir gave the latest stats that with the present rate of foeticide there would be over 2 crore men without women to marry.  This is horrifying even to imagine. No wonder we are witnessing a rise in crime against women. Are you still surprised at the frequency of gang rapes these days ?

6.       Human trafficking , polygamy and pattern of migration. This was new to me 4 years back but that very year The Hindu did publish the story of this startling aspect of the declining sex ratio.
When DIMARU states ( daughter maru states : Punjab, Haryana , Rajasthan, UP, MP) had a scarcity of women a new trend started emerging. The worst aspect of female foeticide. Women from poorer states like Bihar, Jharkhand , Orissa and southern states were purchased and migrated to these states to function as ‘wives’ without status. In a family of 4-5 men a woman would be bought and first act as a wife to the eldest and after a son was born she would be shared by other men of the family. Polyandry began to become a trend. As specified by a Protection Officer on Satyamev Jayate show these women have no status , their children are neglected... they are always at the risk of being abandoned , tortured and sold again. A lot of then face language problems and have no way out of the situation.

Some states practice exchange marriages where a brother and a sister are married into a family only when there is a match for both the brother and sister. These end up in bad marriages. A woman’s story narrated in the book showed the ill effects of such marriages. She was married to a younger guy just because her brother’s marriage was fixed to the guy’s sister. She bore the burden of a dysfunctional marriage so that her brother’s marriage is not affected.

Satyamev Jayate's first episode is commendable. Awareness is the first step towards change. If a society remains in denial we cannot expect a social changed. Pessimistic views would be heard over and over again but saying 'Yes this problem exists'... saying 'Yes we acknowledge it ' .... saying' Yes this monster exists'\ and it is our own making' would be the first step towards a better future and a way of life...

The most important message I guess is that it is a social problem and the absence of the daughters that were killed in- utero would inevitably effect the lives of the daughters who were fortunate enough to be born. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Desta mander... God's work ... living Right...

Have you ever been to those stinky public urinals?

Natures call seems a real torture then. That typical suffocating stench could make you gasp for fresh air. You might hold your breath while your grimacing face is reflexly covered by your hand or 'kerchief. But the good thing is you can always leave that place just in time .....

 Imagine somebody who can't escape it.... 'cos her body itself has transformed into a stinky urinal.... and no matter how much she tries the stench never leaves her... and to add to her misery people shun and despise her...she is ostracized..

  I am talking about a much neglected obstetric condition caused during childbirth called  of vesico-vaginal fistula in which injury to the bladder during prolonged labour leads to constant leaking of urine for the rest of the women's life. It's not life threatening but that constant leaking is life damaging...

 In third world countries like India and Africa where good obstetric care is not available to a large population a good number of young women suffer from VVF post obstructed labour.... In Africa 1 in 12 women and approximately 3 million women worldwide suffer from VVF(vesico-vaginalfistula).

Now imagine that such a suffering young woman meets somebody who treats her and transforms her into a human again ....What would you call that ....??? I would call that reconstruting a broken life and mending a hopeless heart.....

Well this angelic person who does God's work is Dr. Catherine Hamlin who had worked in Africa (Ethiopia ) doing reconstructive surgery for VVF almost her entire life. With her husband she constructed a Addis Ababa Fistula hospital in 1974... Since then they have cured around 30,000 fistula patients.... I was introduced to her amazing work in 2009 when she got the Right Livelihood award for dedicated work in Africa.... which is an alternate to the Nobel.... Hats off to Dr. Hamlin....and to her 'Desta Mander' (Village of joy ).

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The past one month was a little hectic for me. I made a major change of place and all the shifting drifted me away from my blogging world . Sigh! I still have to wait for the broadband connection to be installed. After the last post written for the Kissan contest I wasn't able to post anything. The good thing was I had a little vacation before all the hustle and bustle of shifting to our new home started. There is a lot to write about but somehow I fail to find some peace and quiet to scribble those random thoughts.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Being REAL...

I was sinking in an abyss. A long standing career dream had crashed unceremoniously. The image of a “soulmate “ I had treasured forever had finally whispered mockingly “I am not real!”. I had begun to see how my life drifted and got stuck to an interface of real and virtual. All my friends had distanced with time and I was in touch with them  in bits and pieces aided by the virtual world.The need to prove that I am a human and not Robot at various places in the web universe added exasperation to this grim scenario.I felt exhausted and took refuge in a cup of coffee.

I hold a somber cup of coffee and scratch the periphery of my existence to answer the questions echoing in my head..

“What  is it  to be REAL... feel REAL?”

“When was the last I felt real?”

“When was the first I felt real ?”

(kaleidoscope: a color pencil doodle)
I close my eyes and recline as if to match the template of “REAL” with my memories ....I stand in the damp corner of my mind trying to walk through the alleys of memory-land ...meandering ... gliding... sifting... contemplating and hurrying through the Kaleidoscope of bitter sweet  memories.

 I  walk through the huge chunk of my twenties and I found that all I did was study and  work hard to achieve my career goals . Yes I had seen diseased, sick  , devastated and dying people . Held many hands wiped some tears.I had often contemplated and almost winced at how painful and suffering the “Real World” can be . How death and disease could penetrate suddenly creating deep irreparable gashes in the face of life and how the joy of healing could ease the existence of that" real suffering "a bit. Being a Doctor helped me understand the realities but drifted me far away from being REAL . I soothed myself with faith. Distanced myself from the pain and the cold touch of death. As if I was witnessing it all from a distance through a looking glass; like an alien intruder, just a spectator with a power to intervene but totally “reality-proof”. Amidst the reality of ephemeral life and suffering I did not feel real . I felt distanced and aloof.

I shut that door and walked heavily  a little further  back in the mind boggling teen years and all I could see was a struggle with Identity crisis . The whole deal of being a child trapped in an adult  body was far from being real.With the metropolitan existence and  mixed media messages I was just too busy chalking out a suitable identity for  myself and weaving dreams of the future . I lived more in the imaginary and poetic world than real. Sigh! two decades of my life revisited and I failed to find  “REAL” let alone define it.

Nevertheless I moved deeper into the crevices of  my memory and a sudden flickering light danced on my face. Guided by the light  I curiously  reached a wooden withered door with innumerable chinks. Light sneaking out of those chinks invoking childlike intrigue. I instantly held the knob and let it open ... A flutter of butterflies goes swishing over my face and suddenly I find myself standing in the middle of garden full of flowers .

 I feel a funny sensation in the fingers of my right hand .As I lift my hand up I notice a butterfly struggling captivated in between my  thumb and index finger . Mesmerised I bring it closer to my face and almost overwhelmed by it’s struggle I loosen my grip. She flies away instantly and I watch it rise and disappear into the flower clad trees. I stand motionless my hand still near my face. As she disappears I take notice of my hand. I see my fingers glow with the colors of those delicate butterfly wings. I feel happy and sad . For the first time I realise in that confused moment I felt close to another living being and  totally REAL. (I recall instantly that I was 10 years old and my garden was full of butterflies.Running around and catching them with my fingers , letting them go and then marvelling the colors left on my fingers always made me sad and happy at the same time.)

 This thought was interrupted by a voice shouting out loud  “DIDI!!!”

I turn around and there stands my kid brother on top of a flight of stairs encircling the neem tree in our childhood home , the bottom of which had flower bed filled with lovely flowers and lots of  muddy water. He has a brick in his hand . He  is challenging me for a 'stone throwing' contest. His idea being the bigger the stone the farther he can throw it. Oh! but he is just six years old. He is optimistic he would defeat me today. I look at him with apprehension and amusement . Before I could warn him he gestures to throw the stone and topples over rolling down those few stairs and falls in the puddle of  muddy water and soaks up his clean clothes. I rush to rescue him and a while later we notice the brick lying right there on the top of the stairs motionless. My teary eyed vanquished brother and I laugh like goofs (amused by the fact that the brick was supposed to come down and not my brother ), loud chuckles emanating straight from our amused childish hearts. I hear that loud flawless laughter with my sibling and I feel rejuvenated and REAL.

Again the memory kaleidoscope shifts a bit and the “neem” leaves start falling like rain with those pretty wispy white flowers and I see myself eight years old dancing in circles looking at the falling leaves . My hands stretched wide and I twirl and jump and gesture to grasp those dreamy swirling leaves . The autumn brought dance and music to my childhood solitude. A solitude induced by lack of peers in my neighborhood due to a recent change of place. I felt  aware of every movement I made , my limbs , my feet , my hands , my face filled with fathomless delight as I twirled and the wind twisted around me... I felt REAL!!!

A smile races through my face and my closed eyes perhaps twinkle as my coffee is going cold and I bask in the comforts of my childhood memories. I see myself seven years old and drawing hopscotch on the school ground with my friends. Minutes later we are hopping on one feet dodging the lines and picking up the play piece . I keep climbing the hopscotch ladder flawlessly and then almost screaming with delight I win. The REAL joy of victory exhilarates  me. I find it  through a silly hopping game of crisscross lines.

The kaleidoscope turned again and I saw myself enjoying a bus ride admiring the sun peeping through the canopy of trees on the road to my granny’s home. I engage every possible passenger with my excitement induced by the anticipated  visit to my grand-ma . The fellow passengers seemed amazed with my stories and chuckles . It was the most REAL “excitement” and “anticipation” could get. A time when I didn’t try to emotionally insulate myself and  even think of the possibility of disappointment and despair.

As soon as I reached my grand-ma’s place I saw myself rushing  to the well as per habit. The well was a deep damp hole without a safety boundary. It had a wooden plank across it’s diameter dividing it happily into two halves. That well was a fearful mystery for me . I have always feared heights but I recall daring the well and taking a peep to ensure every time that there was water in it’s belly.My gaze would nervously crawl down the damp moss covered sides of the well  slowly reaching the water surface as it exhaled a chilly damp breathe. It was just the moment when "our" breathes mingled and I scurried away with a twisting stomach. The well personified my fears and every time I peeped in I felt real . More alive . Rejoicing in the fact that the well failed to engulf me once again!

(A rare childhood pic of mine )
After greeting the well   I religiously checked on the height of the Bamboo trees , the fallen “Goolar fruits” , the frogs in the biogas plant. As I  witnessed  myself doing my ritual in my memory-ride a tiny hand grasped my equally tiny hand and rushed pulling  me almost making me run with the same velocity, until panting we stopped behind a tree. I was bare feet. My fist was full. I look into the cherub face of my cousin ( born a few days apart) coaxing me to share the goodies I stole from my grand-ma’s food treasure. I open my fist and there is handful of dried pickles. I share the 'fruits' of my daring 'heist' and feel adrenalin rush of my first  REAL ” vice “ with my first REAL bond of friendship .

I was totally heartened by so many REAL moments in my childhood that I started straining hard moving farther back in time . Looking for the first real moment of my life. I kept walking through those lush mustard farms , I witnessed myself standing extending my frock as an inverted parachute accompanied with my cherub cousin  to catch the falling fruits as my elder cousins climbed those guava trees in the dense neighbouring orchards .The tube well which seemed more magnificent than the Niagara Falls. Running around the fields, counting the stars, listening to granny’s bed time stories, making mud utensils,playing till we were covered in thick layers of dust , sharing meals with my extended family and several such loving memories. But still I couldn't reach the very first real moment . My life kept unfolding and my age kept decreasing and finally I landed that memory . I breathe deep and the image becomes vivid.

I feel the first touch of moist soil beneath my three year old feet. The undulating terrain keeps me from looking at the lovely colors of the sky as the sun is nearing horizon. Perfectly at a spot where one cannot distinguish between sunrise and sunset sans direction. My hand is held by the wrinkly large  hand of an elder. I anchor to it strongly and try to pace up with those elder feet as they try to pace down to my tiny steps. My act of balancing on that sticky soil was interrupted by a horrible looking moving thing which seemed to have a zillion legs . To my nascent eyes that centipede in its solemn crawl seemed the ultimate threat to my existence. I jerked suddenly to halt and went jittery making those elder feet to stop and that bespectacled head to bend down and decipher the reason of my fear. That moment my grand-pa (elder feet) had almost chuckled at the source of my fear. Then without consoling or counselling me he lifted me and I was sitting on his shoulder a second later far far above my fear.. above that undulating sticky ground gazing right into the face of a melting crimson sun....

That was indisputably the first REAL moment in my life when I learnt fear and joy all at once and eternally bonded with the healing beauty of nature and the human capacity to bring joy and love into other's lives by simple acts of kindness. 


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Failure.. (just a thought)

Failure is important , it introduces you to your ability to stand back again..

(Picture: Courtesy Internet)


Friday, March 9, 2012


I will find my sun....

It is but natural for a flower to struggle and defy all obstacles and finally peep into the face of the sun. The sun which nourishes it's soul ;is it's  motivation... driving force ... Even a flower doesn't relent till it grows far enough to find it's sunshine. 

Then why is it so that we settle down for things that are not our "sun". Jobs that don't motivate us that don't complement us.... routines that fail to nourish our souls ... why do we bow down to the rut? ... sulk yet stay there in that sinking dark ...

I wish to be like this flower that grows a little further everyday to find the sun ... even if it means just peeping through a chink.... I wish to find my life force my element and not settle for the rut and the  obvious scripts handed over by the society...

This flower symbolizes an  urge to know ones own rhythm and motivation and reason for being.

P.S. Just a random mobile click...

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Hey Girl with your thinking cap on
hair flowing down beaming straight
 gazing ahead to an infinite ocean
of possibilities, dreaming beyond fate....

Can’t see your face but there sure is grace
I know you don’t care what the mirrors say..
Cos you shine bright with your sparkling thoughts...
So celebrate yourself for who you are this day
And for being yourself every other day!!!...

A very very amateur sketching effort. Women's day seemed  appropriate to post it.

 I tried hard to find that conversation from the movie 'Erin Brockovich'.I could not so I write this from what I remember.

... when a victim of water pollution by carcinogenic affluents from California Power supply who developed breast and uterine cancer  asks Erin

 " Will I still be a woman after a hysterectomy and mastectomy ?" ... 

Erin says

 "You would be a more free woman who doesn't have to worry about tampons and underwires..."

We are women by the sheer grit of our minds and the power of our loving hearts. Even if we lack the perfect face ... the skin... color....attire...

Happy Women's day ! I am proud to be one :)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

My version of The Cheshire Cat...

I began doodling again without a thought.

This thing just lied down for a while and I had no clue what was to emerge. I couldn't see anything . Just when today in my head out of no where echoed " Ambition, distraction, derision and uglification"  I "grinned " at the thought of the Mock Turtle and the favourite character of Alice in wonderland flashed in my head. Yes the Cheshire cat...

There I could see in that meaningless doodle the cheshire cat.

Looks a little weird in the final version ... but weird is what a grinning , vanishing cat disseminating wisdom could be expected to be . So here is Cheshire Cat and one my favourite abstract from 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland".

(Medium: blue and black gel pen, pencil colors, water color)

Alice: "Would you tell me please , which way I ought to get to go from here?"

Cheshire Cat :" That depends a great deal on where you want to get "

"I don't care much where ......" said Alice

" Then it doesn't matter which way you go ".... said the Cat.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award from Saikat :)

February is the month that has lot of love in the air . The Valentine's month fills a lot of excitement in hearts young and old. I am not a Valentine's Day person. Though I always contemplate over  turning a florist for one day on February 14 every year. However this February I have been showered with some fellow blogger appreciation and love. First the unexpected Liebster Award from Nuktaa and now it's the Versatile Blogger Award nomination from Saikat  (whose blog ironically says a scribble art a day keeps doctor away :D )

Thanks a lot Saikat for nominating me for this award . I hope my blog could live up to this "versatile blogger"award .Now its time to follow the rules of this Award.

Rules : 

1. Nominate only 1 fellow Blogger.
2. Inform the Blogger about nomination
3. Share 7 random things about yourself
4. Thank the Blogger who nominated you.
5. Add the Versatile Blog Award picture to your blog post.(FLEXIBLE)

Well first seven random things about me. Wow I have a terrible time writing about myself . Anyways lets try...

1. As a kid I was a totally happy with myself ... most people tell me I was fond of rhymes and when alone could be easily caught singing something.

2. I have a disturbingly good memory at times ( Well helped me get through medical school with flying colours but I have a tough time forgetting things which can have it's own drawbacks.)

3.I love nature and I am totally myself when surrounded by the beauty of nature. I am bonded with the SUN since birth astrologically and psychologically so I am prone to mood swings if the sun hides for long. 

4. I am a natural with children ... takes me a jiffy to bond with them . I strangely get along very well with younger and older people the only trouble I have is getting along with peers :P.

5. Love reading and buying books . Can't imagine a life and home sans books.

6. I have great REM sleep cycle and I remember almost all my dreams and they are really vivid. The only time I didn't remember my dreams was three killing years of Residency program. I felt like a broken Robot that switched on and switched off .

7. I am a learner to the core. As am growing older that zeal to learn is increasing. 

Now it's time to nominate the one blogger who I think is entitled to this award. After much contemplation I nominate Anukriti's Blog .

Thanks again Saikat  for this !

An experiment with Glass...All in a day..

I was in my third year of MBBS when I developed a fascination for glass paintings. They entralled me. One day I found a sheet of glass at home when I was back from college on a short holiday. I visualised a dancing girl and a guy with a 'dhol'. However that could not be materialised so I settled for a dancing girl Gujarati or Rajasthani mainly for their colourful appearance. I aint good at sketching so my extremely talented brother came to my rescue and made a dancing girl on a tracing paper. I bought glass paints and liner (which I thought costed me a fortune).Impatient and determined as I was I ended up finishing the whole deal by evening. 
As I said I had no idea about the nuances of glass painting I had naively chosen a very thin sheet of glass and framing my 'master piece' became an ordeal and ended up costing me more than the entire cost of painting itself !! Reminds me of a short story by Jeffery Archer (in his short story collection 'A quiver full of arrows'). I took this picture today I guess its been 10 years now. It needs some restoration but I guess it still looks very interesting specially cos it was made purely out of instinct.