Wednesday, February 25, 2009

TO DO List and OCD

I have seen people who are obsessed about cleaning. So much to the extent of neglecting their lives. Wikipedia says OCD means:

I am definitely not like that. But I have an obsession now which I am beginning to doubt is leaning toward an OCD state. It is THINGS TO DO! It seems to me like life is mainly comprised of things to do. My mind revolves around the calender to begin with.

Oh, tomorrow, there is a dentist appointment for Son1. Evening he has to go to Activity A. Then get home to finish homework to return to school. Son1, his school, activities and home works can hog my mind like anything.

BTW, on Sunday, there is a birthday party we have to go to. When do we purchase the birthday gift? Make a note of that task.

What about finding a preschool for Son2? There are 4 or 5 choices and now I worry about going to each place and checking out which is good.

As I accomplish a task, I mentally draw a check mark. Wow..that is pure satisfaction that one experiences. But sometimes, it is all overwhelming. Worrying about one thing to do, then next, then next. Worried about whether not being prepared for an event/day will drive us all nuts in the last minute. The only thing that is left to do in life - is worry about the NEXT THING TO DO! I have to remind myself to take it easy - but I am striving hard to be the perfect mom, wife and perfect person who is always taking care of her tasks in a proper way!

Next thing I am planning to do is to take a day off and relax. Oh boy! There I go again!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Maa Tujhe Salaam

I was not a big Slum Dog Millionaire fan to begin with. When I saw the movie, I liked it, but wondered why people have to rave so much about it. Having said that, I was glad that ARR got nominated for Oscar even though I have liked other albums of his better than this. I got all set to catch the Oscar awards ceremony - I think, for the first time in my life! For the first time, there were people I recognize very well and a movie I watched that was contesting.

After B and kids dropped out, it was B's mom and me who continued watching - every time SM's name was called out, it was thrilling. It was a tough fight - with the commercials and the in-between items, the wait to get to ARR was killing us. The work week ahead threatened me and I switched the TV off at 11PM. The dream/sleep was revolving around my unfulfilled desire to watch the part where the music score award would be announced. I woke in the morning and switched on the iPhone - and I was super duper thrilled - ARR got it! B's dad and myself caught the news in TV - I was excited to hear there were 8 awards.

We debated about what the image of India in outside world would be after this movie. Is India projected as a country full of slums? Is it a negative image? I don't know. That debate is endless!

Is the victory of SM a victory for India? Yes, it sure is - listening to Resul Pookkutty, the technician who got the Oscar for sound mixing, I felt emotional and proud. Hearing ARR's Tamil
statement in the red carpet, I felt super proud. So here I am, in the morning, humming Jai Ho (all I knew is Jai Ho, nothing further than that 1 line!) and my song slowly morphed into one of ARR's patriotic number 'Maa Tujhe Salaam'! Everytime I heard 'Thai Manne Vanakkam' (Tamil version of Maa Tujhe Salaam) in Arattai Arangam's title song, I used to be filled with the same pride and excitement! I am happy for the recognition Indian cinema artists have got in the world cinema through this Oscar!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Bye-Bye Pittsburgh!

My previous post was so right in context. Our close friend/classmate S and family are moving from Pittsburgh to West Coast for good. Closing of his office here led him to look for a new job and he got a pretty good offer in the West Coast. He was the only classmate B and I have in the whole of Pennsylvania! So far, we three belonged to the same state even though S is 5 hours away.

So, last weekend, our family visited them before they move away. It brought back memories of driving in Turn Pike for hours like this before. We have driven there 5 or 6 times in the past years - with common friends and with my parents. This was the first time we were going with B's parents.

We had fun visiting the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh. The kids can easily spend a whole day there. There were activities for painting/coloring/pressing paint into paper. There was Workshop garage for kids. There were couple of slides and some water play area with rain coats/water shoes on-site. It was real fun to watch our kids enjoy. Parents were taken on a separate guided tour by S. So they got to see the downtown and Station Square and Mount Washington.

Overall, the trip was short and sweet. We saw the 3 year olds (my son and their daughter) talking and communicating with each other. I did learn a tip or two on how to groom a home for sale and how to keep it well decorated and clean for showing! We were back home Sunday afternoon and rested well to get ready for the upcoming week. Good luck with the new phase of life, my friends!

From our point too, it is bye-bye time to Pittsburgh - now there is not enough reason to drive all the way!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Here or Somewhere Else

I am happy where I am now. I mean, the place and home where I live. I have friends and neighbors around this area who are so much part of our life, that it will be hard to live without them.

But I also wonder - is this where I am going to be for the rest of my life? I would like to say No. I would like to believe that life has so much more in store for me and my family. The mystery of it enchants me!

Life plays wonderful games (sometimes, yucky - I don't want that!) and you never know, where you will end up!

As much as I am used to where I am, I also dream of a place where I will be tomorrow - a totally new place, settling with my family and figuring out things around the new home. It could be close to where I live now, or it could be in a totally different place. I know I would enjoy driving around (B drives, I talk :-) ) finding connections between different small roads and guessing where the roads will lead to. New schools for kids. New work places.

The only risk I run here is ending up in a place where I don't have anyone to depend on/hold on. What is the guarantee that I will find folks as nice as I already know? How bold should one be to let go of all he has and move to a new place and start over - unless forced to?

I have that fear and hope towards a change too. I would love to look forward to a future with totally new experiences.

What do you feel? Can you think of moving from where you are now? Or not?

P.S. Thought process inspired by a girl friend B.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Main Aur Meri तन्हाई

As usual, when I did not find anyone to accompany me for a lunch-out, here I go, in Amitabh style:

मै और मेरी तन्हाई अक्सर ये बातें करते हैं
वोह मेरे साथ lunch पे चलती तो ऐसा होता
ये मेरे साथ lunch पे चलती तो ऐसा होता
प्यार व्यार का चक्कर नहीं है
उस की उमर तो बीत चुकी है
लड़को हो या लड़की कोई बात नही है
कोई तो साथ आता खाने के लिए

अकेले बैठके computer देखके खाना खाके मै थक गई

मै और मेरी तन्हाई अक्सर ये बातें करती है
वोह मेरे साथ lunch पे चलती तो ऐसा होता
ये मेरे साथ lunch पे चलती तो ऐसा होता!!

As I was walking alone with the sandwich packet from the deli,
composing this funny parody in my mind, I saw my colleague.
He had stepped to sit out in the sun for the lunch. I said - "What timing"
and we both sat and chatted!

Looks like God listened to my kavitha and sent someone to keep me company!
This just tells how much of a people person that I am!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Birthday memories

Today is my birthday! The best thing about this day was Nikhil coming up to me in the morning and evening and hugging me repeatedly and saying "Happy Birthday, Amma!". Remember some of the old birthdays where every moment of the day felt special! Every second was to be savored and thanks to nice friends around, one got the most attention, well wishes, greeting cards and gifts. It looked like he is going through similar emotions for me!

This year I felt birthday is like any other day. In the past, I used to feel that I need that special attention or something special done for me.

When I was a child, birthday meant getting a brand new dress. But nothing more than that. Altough people talk about single children being spoilt by parents' pampering, I did not get that kind of attention from parents. They treated me like a normal kid - sometimes more like an adult. So the first time I got pampered was really when I went to Women's College, Trivandrum to study pre degree - by friends. A group of 4 friends, we started the tradition of getting birthday cards, buying icecream and in our own way, celebrating each other's birthday.

When I went to Engineering College, Trivandrum, the first year was truly a totally new and different experience. Friends did not mean girls alone, anymore. I still remember my first birthday in that class after our tour - when we were all not just classmates, but had become friends. A tradition of spending close to Rs.300 emerged and that was the first time, I 'fought' with my father for money. He was shocked to hear my demand for money for birthday because I wanted to give a treat to friends! Anyway, he obliged - as he always has been my dear friend too!
He still would recall that incident where the changes in me shocked him!

Anyway, I really enjoyed every bit of the day with gifts and cards. The gift I cherish was an audio cassette of the Hindi hit of that time - Raju Ban Gaya Gentle man.The next year, when I received my birthday gift from B, little did I know that this tradition/relation was to go on for forever! That too, was an audio cassette of the movie Uzhavan by ARR.

Then we started working - so had more money at our disposal. The day started with phone calls and progressed with birthday emails from friends who worked in other companies.It invariably had a lunch with colleagues and a dinner with collegemates.

Then B and I got married and the first birthday after wedding, B hid gifts all through home like a treasure hunt! That was fun.

Years pass by - now I hear B and Nikhil whisper something to each other. Wonder what is cooking!

A one liner from the closest friends, emails from new blog-friends whose wish took me by surprise, an e-Card from Appa, talking to Amma yesterday night for the occasion, a phone call from a friend warmed up my heart and that is all I need now to feel happy about my birthday!