Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Nature Speaks...

As in its own stillness does Nature celebrate its reflections,
Only in the stillness of thoughts does thinking truly resonate.
Then need restrict not the beating heart- its galloping emotions,
The ocean’s calm is perturbed not by ripples that reverberate.

As clear the water is, so perfect the image.
As if the object’s itself, in water, immersed.
The ocean can even capture the foliage,
So is the cleansed soul which captures the Universe.

The smallest flames can kill the dark.
Warring worlds too have drops of peace.
Placid oceans- their crystal spark,
Contemplate and you’ll find relief!

In ocean depths,
On mountain peaks,
Listen with care-
’Cause Nature speaks.

~Almas Kiran Shamim

P.S.- image: Dec'11, Baratang Island

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

The 'Trial and Error' of Life.

As children we loved those colourful puzzle books with loads and loads of stuff to rack our brains over.
One of the commonest puzzles was to help some funny character help find his way through a maze.

‘Mr. Hungry Bear is as hungry as ever; help him reach the jar of honey by choosing the right path out of the three!!!’

While Sudoku is a lot of logical reasoning, these kind of maze-solving-puzzles were usually guess work and the correct answer could only be found by a ‘trial and error’ method (or so I think, if there IS a ‘logical’ way of finding out the correct option, plz do enlighten me).

I remember that I hardly, if ever, tried to find the correct path by tracing from the starting point to the destination. I usually went straight to the destination and then deftly traced my pencil down through the maze to the character, thus finding the correct path which the character could take in order to reach the whatever-or-wherever-he-was-supposed-to-reach.
Life is a lot like that. We are those stupidly funny characters and have some goal set for us and also many paths that can lead us to that goal, APPARENTLY. Still, there is only one correct path that has been designed for us. Only one path that was designed to make us reach our goal.
BUT, unlike the puzzle we solve in books, this maze in our real life cannot be solved by tracing backwards from our reward.
In life, we have to and just HAVE TO start from where we are right now and move ahead. Takin one option and then the next until we find that one which was our road to the life that we were meant to live.
The typical trial and error way.
We start on one path and move ahead with great zest and zeal only to find that it was a cul-de-sac.
And since ‘they’ say that there is always a choice, here too, we have a choice between quitting the game or starting again, this time on path B.
Lucky are the people who strike gold the very first time they strike. For others….. they have to try and try again until the correct option is found that would take us where we were meant to be.
Yes, I have not once said, that the correct path takes us where we want to be…. But, rather where we were meant to be.

Coz’, I am not of those who believe that people carve out their own future.
I am a strong believer of Destiny.
I believe that if I am standing in a room with a hundred doors opening into a hundred roads, and if I have been given the key to a single door- no matter how much I dislike the look of the door, the road that it opens into or the place that the road leads to-THAT is definitely the door that I am meant to take. Of course, I might try to push the other doors open, scream and fight, but, at the end I will and WILL end up where I …. Well….was meant to end up.

but, still, in spite of this belief, there are times when sadness creeps in like a worm eating into a fruit, destroying it. Certain times the roadblocks that we come across break us so badly that we are left with not a ray of hope.
At such times, I guess, we need to remind ourselves of the God in whose hands rests everything.
God is called an artist, a sculptor, a potter and what not…. Being the master craftsman that He is, He has crafted our life to what it was meant to be.
Each of us has a custom made life. What is best for one might not be the best for another.
Moreover, we are like those little droplets of water that go into the making of the vast ocean. Each one being what it is.
Each droplet is not an ocean.
But there is no ocean without each of these droplets put together.

Here I am reminded of a very old bookmark I’d bought; it has a beautiful quote.
“Know that all is well always. Everything is unfolding as it should.”

Words in the pic are from Max Ehrmann's "Desiderata"

Monday, 30 January 2012

On Chicken Pox, Birthday Parties and a lot of Memories!!!

Today, my nephew and niece visited our home after 3 weeks…
Actually, I had been chicken poxed and to avoid the infection, my sister’s family did not visit us for the past three weeks.

It was almost like three weeks in Hell for my mother and my sister………
Chaar dinooo kaaaaa pyaaarrrr o rabbbaaaa……..Lambiiii judaaaiiii…….Lambiiiiii judaaaaaaiiiiiiii :p :p :p
Anyway, while I did miss Aapa and the kids…. I missed some other ‘things’ much more.
Actually, the pox erupted on the night of 9th January, but, I failed to realize that these little vesicular lesions are actually and really the chicken pox which I have successfully avoided for the past 6 years, all by the grace of Allah. Throughout my college, I was exposed to the virus many times and many got infected but Alhamdulillah, I didn’t. I was scared especially coz’ I didn’t know where I’d go if I got poxed. So, well.. it was on 10th morning that I suddenly realized that Oh Oh My My Good Good GOD!!!! This is CHICKEN POX!!!
And what a perfect timing!!!! 10th January is my nephew-niece’s b’day :( and that very evening, my Aapa-Bhaiya were about to throw a BIG PARTY !!!! :(
Fiza-Faris were born on 10th Jan, 2007, when I was still in college.
Their first b’day party had been HUGE! The second one was gr8 too! But, I was…..yes,yes….still in college….
Their third and fourth b’days were celebrated at home; no real ‘party’ was organized….but, I couldn’t attend these two home-bday-celebrations either coz…..:)….. I was still in college….:P
This year they were completing FIVE, Alhamdulillah…. And they are in KG I, so they have a few special friends by now, so Aapa and Bhaiya decided to have a really big birthday bash…..

That's Fiza-Faris with their best friends- Tanveera, Priya and Anshad and also their parents- my Aapa-Bhaiya, just before they cut their b'day cakes. I dont know who the other kids are.

This would have been the first time i’d see them on their b’day.
I had been waiting (and preparing) for this day for a loooonnnggg time. I had bought their b’day gifts from Alleppey in October coz I might not get proper gifts in the tiny town of Port Blair. Aapa and I had decided what I’d wear for this b’day within days of my reaching home.
But, coz’ everything is in Allah’s hands and Allah knows best and does best, I couldn’t attend this much awaited b’day party. I aint sure if I’d still be alive next year, and if I’d be alive, whether I’d be in Blair or in mainland India…..
In any case, they wudnt be throwing a ‘party’ kind of party from now on…until the children grow up enough, so that we can invite their friends WITHOUT their parents and organize little games or maybe theme parties…..


The good part was that I was reeeeaaallllyyyy rrreeeeaaalllyyy upset about looking UGLY that night.
The attire we had chosen was a full length black and beautiful skirt (about which I’ve written earlier in this blog) paired with a black cardigan (coz’ I didn’t have another full sleeved plain black top and there was no chance we could find one in our little jungle town :) ); and a shockingly yellow headscarf with a yellow handbag . Now, I looked gr8 wearing all this way back in November…. But I have gained tremendous weight, doin nothing at home for the past 2-3 months…. :(

To add to my ‘beauty’, I had my driver’s test on 7th Jan and for that we had been practising for 1 whole week in tez dhoop at Attom Pahaad where the driving test is conducted….
The dhoop got me tanned so much that my complexion mixed with the sweat on my face made me look like I’d been put on a pan to be shallow fried and then forgotten there with the flame on *rolling eyes*

Given my skin’s immense power at getting tanned, it is amusing that I suffer from a de-pigmenting disease!

Anyway, a few years back, while my sister was practising ‘reversing’ the car, she got a sunstroke :( thankfully, nothing like THAT happened!

But, still; I didn’t really like what I saw in the mirror – a fat girl with all the possible shades of brown on her body, the brown-est of all being on her face, that brownest of brown face framed in the yellowest of yellow headscarves and all the other shades of brown on her body covered by the blackest of black outfits. I looked WOW!! :D

One option was to go to the parlour and get a lot of things done to my face … but I have never had a facial or a bleach in the past 24 years of my life. While I was a teen, I kept postponing that first facial to my 20s. I ‘ve now raised the bar to 30 :) I don’t really believe in one time parlour visits.

I could have changed the headscarf of course, something that went a little more "normally" with my chocolate brown face and didn't make look sooooooooooooooooooooooooooo yellow headed .... but the real thing was that I just didnt want to wear that skirt.......:_( I had some other lovely head scarves that were not so terribly contrasting my skin tone and black outfit BUT..... I just didnt want to wear the skirt. :_(
I really wanted to wear a salwar kameez coz I’ve already mentioned in a previous post that this was (is) my firstest skirt and I am extremely scared of not being able to walk in skirts/sarees/lehengas kind of dresses….. so, I wanted to wear a salwar kameez which is my favouritest clothing in the world but aapa thinks that waise bhi I look like a jhalli wearing salwars, on top of that my ‘collection’ of salwar kameezes is absolutely SubhanAllah! Matlab I’d have to wear denims. And I am FED UP of wearing denims. Truly, madly, deeply FED UP.

So, the chicken pox turned out to be a boon in one way at least! ;P

But, otherwise..yes! I missed the party.
I missed the place where the party was held- Megapode Nest- where I had gone with my sister many times, but which is mostly memorable coz my sister’s engagement was held there :) I was in 8th std then.
I missed meeting the children – Anshad, Priya, Durga, Tanveera, Ananya and all of them…..
But, most of all I missed my little babies :_(
Fiza and Faris are very special for us. Of course, all children are special for their family members…. So, well… they are really special to us.
They were born after 6 yrs of marriage (which, I know, doesn’t sound much, but when u really want a baby, 6 yrs is like 60 yrs) and Aapa-Bhaiya took treatment from Apollo, Chennai. We also had an IVF failure. It was all a very painful time for my family.
However, Alhamdulillah, Aapa conceived after undergoing an ICSI…. I still remember the day when she first told me about the babies….we both had cried over the phone (coz’ like I told, I was still in college..)
It was also a complicated multiple pregnancy with both babies in Breech and Aapa having gestational diabetes and hypertension…not to forget that we are talking about an ICSI pregnancy….. My parents had stayed with Aapa for a long time in Chennai.
I also remember the day when they finally cried their first cry….
I really wanted aapa to deliver before 26th Jan, coz I was planning to combine the republic day holiday with the weekend and a few leaves to go to Chennai, but, on 10th the doctor told that we’ll have to wait a looooooooooooooooooonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnngggggggggggggggg time. I was super desp coz that meant I wudnt get to see the babies as I cudnt possibly take leave after Jan… and in my desp-ness I went to the Library and was telling my vyatha to one of my seniors, Dr. Deepankar Dhar, when I got Abbu’s call telling me that Aapa has got the pains and is being taken to the theatre for an emergency CS :) I rushed back to the hostel and was in another senior’s room, Shikha didi’s room, when Abbu called me again to say that we have a little baby boy, 45 seconds elder to a little baby girl :) :)
We had only one girl’s name confirmed- Fiza. And lots of combinations of girl-girl and girl-boy names….. also some very ridiculous boy-boy names.
But, I was final in my choice that I’d call the boy- Faris (this epic decision was taken on 12th Jan) and uske baad bhaiya tried his level best to change the name from Faris to anything else on this planet but Muhahaha!!! ‘Faris’ ko badalna mushkil hi nahi namumkin thha *cunning laughter*
[btw, Faris means ‘a knight’ or ‘a valiant horse rider’. It also refers to Iran, but this is not the meaning we considered while naming the boy.]
So, anyway, I missed the party :(

I also missed ITF- Island Tourism Festival which is a kind of mela- nothing really ggrrraanndd!!! But, in a place like Port Blair where nothing at all happens (Alhamdulillah for that actually!!!!!), anything is a big thing….. I really wanted to go to ITF and eat and then eat some more….. :(

On 17th was my interview, which I would have missed had my ‘infectious stage’ not been over, but since I had started taking antivirals on time, I got the eruptions only until the 11th .

What else did I miss?????? Hmmmmmmm…… that’s it I think…;p

I missed a b’day party and a mela and I’m very sad about it…;p

But, I saw my babies today…. and saw their b’day pics…. And the food from the party was sent home for me (the mostest delicious-est malai kofta in the world) ….. and I got my driver’s on the 14th ….. and well….. Alhamdulillah ala kulli haal :)

[image 1 -]

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Opinions-The Assholes

The world, especially the Internet World, is teeming with people who call themselves “Opinionated”.
Me included.
People are pretty proud in penning (typing) their “Opinions” and claiming how they don’t care about what people have to say coz’ they are sooooo “Opinionated”.
This part is cool!!!
What matters is how exactly we behave towards other “Opinionated”s.
As long as someone’s “Opinions” are the same as (or bare any resemblance to) our own, we are at peace. But, they differ for an instant and Oooopsss!!! We find ourselves at the verge of WW III.
I do, too.
But, I think that we need to reconsider what this over emphasized word actually means to us.

I now mention the meaning of ‘Opinionated’ and ‘Opinion’ from a very basic Oxford Dictionary (a REAL hard covered book, not thru Google).

OPINIONATED: (adj). assertively dogmatic in one’s views
OPINION: (n).1. a view or judgment not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.> the beliefs or views of a large number of people: the changing climate of opinion. > an estimation of quality or worth: he had a high opinion of himself. 2. Law a formal statement of reasons for a judgment given. > a barrister’s advice on the merits of a case.

I am not going into the origin of the word. Not all are interested in finding origins of words…. But if you are, you may well find out yourself.

As we see, an ‘opinion’ is just that…. An ‘opinion’. It is not a FACT. We can hardly be sure of anything being a fact.
All this world is just a maze of opinions. Now, that, again, is my opinion.
And our real understanding of the word is put to test when we come across people who don’t conform to our views of the world and beyond. To what extent do we go to change their points of view.
We do it all the time, ok- a LOT MANY times, if not always.
HERE, I think, is where we can actually learn to control ourselves.
I personally have a simple funda in this matter- if the ‘Opinion’ under scrutiny has been opined in YOUR space, you have all the rights to have the final word, coz anybody trying to give their ‘little bits of difference’ to your opinion are trying to mould you to suit themselves- which they should not, even if they consider themselves to be the most opinionated ones in the world, coz a truly ‘opinionated’ person (I know this word is being highly repeated!!!!) knows the process that goes into the ‘making of an opinion’. He/she realizes that an opinion formed has been formed by either much thinking (as in the case of a person who reverts to Islam after studying Islam) or no thinking at all (as is true with a large number of the ‘born-Muslims’). While in the first case any assertion to the contrary belief will be largely futile coz the person does have some idea of what the person is saying/doing (e.g, telling a revert to leave Islam coz it teaches violence. Any person reading about/ dwelling into religion in today’s time would have definitely come across this Islam-is-violent thing), in the second case too, too much persuasion is in vain, coz’ then we are dealing with people who are really not interested in knowing anything (e.g., a Muslim who is a Muslim just coz his father was one, telling all other religions are false without even knowing what the other religion teaches- if you try to ‘persuade’ him not to believe in anything that his family has ‘conventionally’ believed in, you’re not doing anything other than irk him).
And SO, I let people have their space. You wouldn’t find me hammering my head against the wall of someone’s opinions, if he is not coming down and hurling it at me. And SO, I’m left utterly amazed when people argue with me over some matter, whatever it be, in places as mine as my FB account or my Blog. While they are open to be read by all, I don’t really think they are anything close to a discussion forum. If I start considering ‘people’ and what they think even while writing my own blog, where exactly does ‘my own opinion’ go?
I ain’t a Shahrukh or a Kareena that my take on anything would or even should matter to anyone! Then why am I not entitled to have my opinion on something?
Do people feel that I have never opposed them anywhere coz I agree with each and everything that they have ever said or written? God! No! I just think that if you feel like THAT, cool!!! I don’t! Cooler!

But, obviously , my opinionated ‘friends’ don’t think so. For them, being opinionated means a successful conversion of the ‘opponent’s’ viewpoint.
It is one thing to disagree with me, but, it is a totally different thing to ‘argue’ with me until I accede to you. Why should I ?????
On the one hand my ‘opinionated’ friends say how ‘courageous’ they are, how ‘bold’, how ‘i-don’t-give-a-shitt-ish’ in having their opinions…. On the other hand they don’t appreciate the same ‘courage’, ‘boldness’ and ‘i-don’t-give-a-shit-ishness’ of another person!
Or are they trying to show that they are sooooo totally opinionated that they cannot stand anybody else speaking anything that goes against them????
You are then trying to encroach into someone else’s space.
You will never find me going on and on and on in someone else’s blog or someone else’s anything, to prove my point. I usually ignore ‘stuff’ that I dislike, and if I don’t, I only present my own reasons for disagreement and say a tata and leave.
But, if it’s MY blog, YOU are leaving.
If I let you have space for your opinions, I expect you to let me have mine.
I mean the very purpose behind creating these ‘spaces’ was to voice my opinions.
Respecting opinions should be mutual. I am no way going to do ALLLL the respecting here.
Of course, many might again disagree with this funda of mine.
But well…this is me!

You know “Saare jahaan se achha Hindostan humara” doesn’t mean that if a Pakistani is praising his own country I would go and ‘Pachhar maro’ there. But it means that I will not take anybody ‘pachhar maro-ing’ when I sing the praise of my own motherland.
This entire post actually popped into my head after being reminded of this old movie quote-
“Opinions are like assholes. Everybody’s got one and everyone thinks everyone else’s stinks.”

This is a wowsome comparison :p
You know these assholes… the anal apertures… are really important.
The asshole is the hole that allows waste to pass out….i should rather say ONE form of waste to pass out from the human body.
An absence of asshole can only be accepted if there is no excreta formation which in turn can occur if you don’t eat at all or maybe vomit out every thing that you eat. Both aren’t really pleasant!
“Imperforate anus” is a congenital anomaly where the affected child does not have a proper anus (maybe narrowed severely or maybe completely missing)…. He does not have an asshole. The child is then taken to a Paediatric Surgeon in order to painstakingly create an asshole for him.
In certain conditions where the lower part of the large intestine is resected, and faeces cannot be excreted the normal way, a colostomy is created, which, simply put, is a hole in the abdominal wall to let the faeces out.
The importance of assholes cannot be undermined.

And if our asshole is itching, we must try to keep it cleaner, and maybe de-worm ourselves.
And talking about the ‘stink’. Well, we should either bear it or exchange noses!

Friday, 20 January 2012


I do not know how good or bad an idea this is. I do not even know if this is an 'idea'. What is an idea anyway?
Ok. So I dont know how good or bad a thought this is.
I find myself 'not knowing' a lot.
And I am glad that I dont know. Coz it is only when I dont know that I'll try to know.
And as I go on 'trying to know', I'll 'not know' all the more.
All this life is nothing but raising questions and trying to find the answer to those questions.
And sometimes, NOT finding the answer to those questions.
And sometimes finding answers to questions that we never asked.
IF they CAN be called answers, that is.
Everything is so futile. And we strive for this futility.
It is not a working in vain. It is a working FOR vain.
I created a lot of trouble at home.
I fought like my life depended on fighting. But, it was only when I stopped fighting that I started living again.
I go against my own beliefs when I do certain things.
I feel that my family is making me do something that I dont want to do.
How did I feel THIS, when I claim to believe that POWER lies only in One Hands?
I would be happy if ghosts didnt scare me.
I would be happier if there were no ghosts.
But, I would be the happiest if there was no fear.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

एक शमा जलाई थी...


एक शमा जलाई थी,
कि कुछ उजाला हो जाए,
रास्ता थोड़ा दिखे,
कि खौफ़ मेरा मिट जाए ।

तूने तो पूरे गुलिस्तॉ मे
आग यू लगाई थी,
कि जलते हुए गुल को देख,
तपती गर्मी भी शर्माई थी ।

और मैने तो इस जहॉ मॆ,
बस एक शमा जलाई थी ।
उम्मीद की उस एक किरन से,
क्या आफ़त मैने ढाई थी ॥

~अलमास किरन शमीम 

My baby.

I lost my cat recently. We had gone to my sister's house and usually the cat runs home the moment he sees us alight from the car on our return. But, that fateful night, he didnt. I knew, right then, that something's wrong. We waited for a few days but we already knew that he is gone. Actually, some days prior to the day I lost my cat, my father had overheard some women at the butcher's place . . . They were looking for cats coz they have to give it for 'puja'. I think they meant sacrifice. Some guys standing around them asked if the cats 'they had already taken' werent enough, to which these women repeated their 'puja' thing.
Mummy later told that they had heard that a certain group of people kill cats and use their guts to make medicines.

We have also noticed that there are NO stray cats in our area anymore.

The thought of my baby being killed saddens me like I cant express. I wonder what he must have thought of While dying. He must have wondered why arent we there to save him.

My baby is dead. There's nothing else that I can say. I love you.


Now reading ... "Crime and Punishment" by 'Fyodor Dostoyevsky'.



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