Friends and friendships

Anu met her friend at the parking lot.Her slim figure looked frail and her face without the usual sheen.

Anu gathered from small talk that her friend was not keeping well. Niru lived alone with her child.

As a caring mother she put her life energies to nurturing her child. She took great pains to cook great dishes, provide all comfort to her child.

Sometimes it was difficult.

Not much of a social person, she kept to herself. The mom and daughter looked out for each other, had good to great food, even trying their hands at marathons.

That was an experience, Anu remembered how Niru spoke about it with great excitement.

Quiet but smart and efficient, Niru believes in letting her work speak. She constantly upgraded her skill set.She knew that there was something out there for her.

Her grace and charm and her devotion to work does not go unnoticed as her students and colleagues reach out to her in appreciation.

‘You are super, mam’, they said often.

Yet, when Anu saw her at the parking lot, she said bye and moved ahead. After some time though, Anu got increasingly worried, ‘what if…’ she thought of returning to check on her friend and slowed down and waited at the junction long enough to see her friend ride away smartly.

It must be the times, it must be herself, it might be the kindred of womenhood, yet Anu thought, if she had not waited to see if her friend was alright, she may not have been able to sleep well.

Hmmm….something really is getting on to the nerves… what is it really?

To all the women braving it out there, with salary cut offs and support non existent and increasing insecurities, reach out, express yourself in writing or reading or coloring even, and that is going to help a great deal.

Till then, this too shall pass….

Besides friendships are not about insta pics or fb posts or crying out from the rooftop but just being there in silence, reaching out in need and lending some quiet reassurance.

Quarantine Musings

The young man, one of my brilliant and enthusiastic colleagues walked in today with his wife, a smart yet quiet girl and declared, ‘she is everything to me, my life and my lifeline.’

‘I come here often he said, referring to my office, we discuss everything non academic and creative and that is something I love doing’

I looked at the couple and smiled.

‘Times have been tough’, he said, ‘who can blame Sushant Singh Rajput for what he did? That brilliant boy was pushed to do what he did.

Anybody else would have done the same.

The past months I too ……..really..he paused.

She helped though, her love and her care and my friends’.

The young girl smiled understandingly, ‘this boy, he talks a lot about death mam….’

She is a health officer who felt that it is this quarantine that has finally got the government machinery some recognition, ‘usually we are always in the bad books, no matter what!’

‘You know what, she always asks me to talk about her work. Like if we meet someone and they ask her what she does, she will in turn look at me , no, not because I am the control freak or something, some how when she speaks about her work, people don’t seem to get it, and they instead look at me, so now she has deputed me to do all the talking.’

‘I think of farming, perhaps that’s something I should do. You see farmers are resilient, and I have been trained in it by my father, so what if I did my PhD and I love teaching, I can always pick up the plough’.

They looked as if they were made for each other, the man being creative and outspoken the girl silent and observant and that she said, ‘ is what makes their journey together interesting’.

I was thinking of lifelines for living, how important it is to be understood and to be heard.

I guess that is what makes the difference. When Anju called me from Chandigarh yesterday after a long hiatus it felt good.

The quarantine is affecting everyone in different ways, my mother who lives but 8 hours away from me, panics, ‘when can I see you?’

These are tough times. Challenges are one too many. Even the strongest need support. So reach out and stay connected.


Capernaum :More than just a film

What makes him act like that mom? asked my girl after watching the movie ‘Capernaum’.

I am not usually ready to watch movies of violence and if it involves children, I almost dare not watch it.

But sometimes you give in to public demand and join for a good movie watch time.

I am glad I did.

The intensity of the suffering, the absolute misery of the people and more so that of the children, strikes your heart too hard.

Capernaum - Cornell
More than just another a film