November 30, 2009

The Jasraj show in Hyderabad

This year, Jasraj threw his US sishyas at us unsuspecting Hyderabadis. Even Chowmohalla could not rescue the situation. And Durga Jasraj seems to be at an all-time low in confidence levels. Some of the other programs they put together were also not good.

I pine for Sawai Gandharva...yes, I plan to go...New English School, Shanivarpet, Pune, 7-10 Jan 2010.

November 23, 2009

What's beetroot called in Telugu?

I have to record this dinnertime conversation for posterity because it is very funny, very Maloo. But you need to know Telugu and Hyderabad to understand it. Any explanation will spoil the spontaneity.

Vijay asked whether Maloo knew the other Telugu name for potato.

Maloo: The other name for potato? Alu gadda?
No?
Ulli gadda?
No?
I know...erra gadda!

We start laughing.

And Maloo says...."Sorry...erra gadda is beetroot, right?

Great logic there...we are in splits now!!

November 20, 2009

A refreshing day

The other day, on an impulse, I set off to the University of Hyderabad, one hour away from the city, to see some chalk art by Tracy Lee Stum. Took a ride with my friend Usha, who teaches there. The ride was great, the weather perfect (cool and cloudy), and I enjoyed chatting with my friend for an hour.

However, when she dropped me off at the auditorium where the chalk art had been done, I discovered that the art work had been washed away in the previous night's rain!

I now had to either sit under a tree and read the book I was carrying, or go to my friend's department and sit in the library, or head back home. I decided on the last option, but in an unhurried way. I decided to take the train instead---I had been wanting to take the MMTS since some time, but hadn't done it. So I walked back about 3 km to the gate, took a shared auto to the MMTS station, then the train to Hyderabad for Rs 3 ! As I walked down the lane to the station, I was rewarded with this photo-op.
The MMTS ride was great, and I got off at our very own picturesque Necklace Road. Then, again on an impulse, went to the multiplex to see a children's film (International Children's Film Festival was on). I was again rewarded---saw a very good film---Siri Raja Siri (Sri Lanka). All in all, a great day! I am now inspired to take a train out of town on an unplanned rail adventure :)

November 11, 2009

Dream coming true...

This is why I was happy on Deepavali! My garden is thriving (see background post 'Dreams'). We not only have trees, but some shrubs and creepers as well. Some are even flowering now. We also painted a few walls with jaju (geru in Hindi). The place looks attractive and children and some adults come every evening to water the plants or to just walk around.

And what's more, we also have a table tennis table in our complex. We play every day...sport is back in my life! At one time it was my life...what I am today is because of sport...a post on this later when I have some time, for this topic is very close to my heart, and it is emotionally draining to write about it. One day I will.

In the meantime, have a look at these pictures.

This is how it was when we began

Children painting the drab wall

The little ones had a great time!

Children sowing dhania and methi

The completed wall

Cordia has begun flowering

...and so have some others!

Inauguration of the TT table

The inaugural match: Champ vs champ. We have ex-Champ---Coach Nagender Reddy--- and his son (Vighnay) who is the State no 1, living in our building

November 02, 2009

Perfection

Three years back, I lost my watch. It was a watch I had chosen and had for a very long time. I loved it; it seemed just right on my hand. But over the years, I got used to its simple beauty, and began to take it for granted. I even wished I would lose it or something so that I could buy a new watch. Of course, I did have a second (and a third) watch gifted by my family, but I wore this one as a matter of choice.

And one day I lost it. It just fell off from my bag into which I used to carelessly stuff it. Very bad...I know. But to be honest, I was a little happy that it was gone. This too is very bad, I know.

And then began my search for the perfect watch. Titan was my first choice. I looked closely at what they had to offer...the heritage collection interested me. But I was disappointed. Nothing seemed good enough. Then I looked at FastTrack. I liked just one among those, but I had bought that for my daughter two years back, and she loved it and wore it everyday. I couldn't buy the same thing. This search soon turned into an obsession...I couldn't pass by a watch shop without going into it; every mall I went into, I headed towards the watch section, and looked for one that I might spontaneously like. They were good...but there was something lacking. If they had the right look, one couldn't read the time. If the readability was okay, the look wasn't right for me. Too much gold, too much steel, too black, too messy; if the dial was good the strap was steel or gold, and I wanted leather; if the starp was good, the dial wasn't.

I then looked at Citizen, XLS, Omega, Christian Dior---at one point I thought expense was not the criterion; I must find a watch that was just right for me.

It was only then that I began to understand what my old watch had meant to me. I did not even have a photograph...I went back and described it to the Titan showroom guy and asked him if that model was still available. He said no, the old models didn't come any more.

In the meantime, my brother Gautham gifted me a new eco-drive watch, that had no battery...it charged automatically with light! I liked new technology and I liked the watch too...but somehow it didn't seem like my watch. My wrist was still unhappy.

Last month I went to a watch shop in Warangal to buy a watch for my sister-in-law Deepthi. I looked at all the models to pick one she might like. And as my ever-searching eyes looked, my eye fell on one model...it seemed soothing to the eye; there was something delicate and special about it...it seemed just right. I asked them to show it to me. And...believe it or not...it was the very same model as my lost watch, whose value I had realised over and over again during this time. I could not believe my luck! With great happiness, I bought it for Rs 750, wore it in the shop itself, and was on cloud nine the whole day...just floating happily, looking at my just right! Here it is, photographed for posterity...and no, I will never lose it again.

This watch, I think, illustrates a quotation from one of our printer friend's emails:
Small small things make perfection
But perfection is not a small thing.