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Just Satyrical

Across the horizon

blue and bright

where dreams blend into reality

a search light will still be found

and when you walk up and shake hands

she will ask you to sit down and have a cup of coffee

stories of now and yonder will then be shared

know that it is your test of endurance

hold your yawn and keep the smile

a little giltter in your eyes will help!

cracking and being cranky she shall up the game

just be patient if you are in for the long run

or jump and scoot and don’t leave a trace behind

if you so think otherwise, god speed!

the howling winds will take you farther

to your dreamland and fantasies soon

till such time go catch the butterfly

the glow worms and the secret santas of the world

her time is around, so is yours

stay put, stay proud, storms strengthen

resolves regain vigour and a vengeance

to find, to know, to hold, to be

so it shall be, said the Satyr

and the zephyr blowing by.

Ps: vacuum is a good place to begin with!

Of my first book ever

Coz the universe decides to have your back!

Adhyapika

While I was a happy, super confident chirpy girl in my childhood, I changed into a clumsy, quiet and unsure young adult as soon as I entered college. I had big trouble lifting my head and looking up at others. A huge blanket of shyness fell on me with such heaviness that I was convinced I must be the most stupid,incapable and unattractive person on the planet.

Compliments, if they came, made me cringe and want to hide. A part of me did see this anomaly in a person who loved the sky and dreamed of fierce independence and took to scooter riding at a time when there were few girls riding a scooter in a quaint town like Palakkad. (Well! that was the height of adventure, I could think of)

Yet, I swung between extreme feelings of inadequacies and my unsure attempts at breaking the shell somehow did not…

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Cat dreams

It as if it is not enough to strut and show his walk in style at home in the day time that Andrew, my cat decides to visit me in my dream.

The day was tough and the PhD looming large in my thoughts, I look to hit the sack as quickly as I reach home. Andrew, however meows seeking attention and demanding that he is taken out for a stroll. Once I open the door to the corridor, though, all he does is to flop on the floor and roll around and try his best to look cute!

Soon though, having impressed the onlookers of his handsomeness, he goes in search of some protein bites and likes to stroll the long corridors now emptied with the advent of the corona.

So, he struts his stuff,stops to check any opening, looks at the staircase as if he intends to ‘leave for Kashi’ for good but soon gallops home at the sound of any approaching footstep.

Safely inside, he watches carefully to see that the passersby are homed in their own spaces before coming out again to claim the corridors in the dead of the night,while simultaneously keeping an eye on my movements and intentions which he seems to read well in advance.

Now into his second year on the planet, Andrew is yet to meet his soulmate. Perhaps he doesnot know of such pleasures of living, which is to be blamed on the insensitivity of his family, who don’t let him out as he would wish to be.

A good friend of mine is very anxious of this gross injustice inflicted upon my boy and often suggests innovative and interesting match making events for the handsome cat that Andrew is.

Andrew though is quite the gentleman, mostly at least and I take pride is saying that he must take after his family.

Well, what I didnot expect Andrew to do is to ofcourse walk into my dream and not just mine, but my daughter’s as well on the same night, must be quite an attempt at manipulation by the young fellow. While I dreamt of saving Andrew from fire, my daughter dreamt of finding him at Mars, think of cats ruling us! really, I mean literally.

Anyways, as it looks to me that I will now have to get used to solitude again, Andrew should keep me in good company come day or come dreams!

Handsomeness incarnate- Andrew, cat

Things I wish would go digital

Adhyapika

While we count the steps and watch the calories and have sleep monitored and heart checked technology is definitely being put to good use.

One of the class projects my students did was a smart dustbin which they said could help us achieve the goal of ‘Swachh Bharat’, looks like a far cry to me, but there is no harm in trying.

But with such dependency on technology I wonder why some things don’t make their way to reality?

Is it because they lack commercial value?

Well,I don’t have much of an idea why these don’t exist, I mean, in places that I frequent or stay in, especially in the tech-capital of India!

But here are a few things I wish would make it to reality:

  • Bill boards depicting levels of air pollution

Instead of the funny innocuous faces that adorn the bridges and the walls of every nook and…

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Set the bar high, watch a miracle happen – Classroom Tactics

Set the Bar High: Watch a Miracle Happen- Classroom Tactics

Years of working with young people has taught me a lesson or two in dealing with them and bringing out the best.

I have realized that the mistake we do when we interact wit young people is that we underestimate their strengths and abilities. The cascading effect of our observation and feedback on the person’s performance as an adult or a teacher leaves a long lasting impact on the individual and then the class.

What. then is the best way to go about in training or teaching?

Set the bar high, really high.

I really mean this. The last semester we had a course on Design Thinking for the students. Students were supposed to work on projects of their choice in groups of 6-10. As the groups set out to work, I said, ‘This very classroom in which you are seated now, has witnessed some very good presentations by your seniors. In fact, there were times when I was propelled to my feet out of sheer enthusiasm generated by the excellence of the presenter. I am sure you can do that too maybe even try and out do your seniors.’

As the days went by and it was time for evaluation, I was more than impressed when the students carried a huge apparatus to the classroom. They had been working on it for weeks together, they said. They met after class hours, pulling themselves out of their comfort zones to bring out a miracle.

I was staggered in surprise and shock and was absolutely speechless.

What could I say to such ingenuity, to such a show of sheer grit and hard work?

As the students carried the working model of a car to the class, they said that everyone on the corridor wanted to know what is that really?

It made them feel proud they said.

You really pushed us to outdo ourselves, mam, they said simply.

Surely, it was not me but their team spirit and enthusiasm that won the day so much that I was compelled to propose the idea of hosting an exhibition of Design Thinking and Team Building and the enthusiasm it created in the student community, re-emphasized to my mind the thought that the higher you aim, the higher you fly.

To the sheer strength of spirit and joy of creative inquiry, three cheers!!!

classroom creativity

The escapist

From mint chutney, to gongura chutney to dosa podi to sambhar powder, my kitchen was witness to frenetic activities.

As glass jars were filled one after another, and as excellent sambhar and rice, with pappadam made its way to the dinner table, I realized how I was busy circumambulating my area of fear.

How I was not doing what I was supposed to do.

How when I sat down to write I was busy writing exactly what was not incumbent upon me.

It became clear to me that I was playing the quintessential escapist.

It was also clear that this was going to land me in trouble.

I sweated out as I tried to write.

I was so nervous that I shut the system and pretended to sleep.

My young garden bore green chillies that makes my maid go..awwww didi, nodi, nodi, eshtu chanagithu nodi! in Kannada.

The tomato plant is brimming in green and the aloe vera is still trying to find her own space in a new home.

Hopefully I too will find my niche and be sure footed in my academic writing.

Surely it can’t be difficult.

It must the mental blocks that is making me so jittery.

It is just a matter of getting a hang of it.

Stay on

Your sunshine is seeking you.

Maybe this is not escapism.

Maybe I am just trying my best to get ahead in this new area of work.

Maybe I am just about there.

Yeah, maybe that’s it.

If only you heard me once

You would hear me everytime

really

she smiled confidently

her bushy brows

arching in excitement

if only you heard me out once

just once

coz I am super addictive

even to myself

(so I see!

he wrinkled his brows

pulling at a beard strand )

well, it has been so always

you know what

she thumped her feet

stood up to face the window

(he looked at her silhouette

he sighed)

if you only you had the patience

the nerve

the compassion

the wisdom

(so, now it is on me

it always is!

he thought)

to look beneath the moods

read between my grunts and disgrunts -whatever

(what is she, Monica Seles!

crazy woman

so consumed of self)

to ponder over the depth in my eyes

my sights and my sighs

if you only took the trouble

to get up from that chair of yours

where you are glued

morning to night

to follow me to the kitchen

to the garden

to the cycling trips

where handsome men

stop and stare

at the pretty sight

me, of course!

you would have known better

perhaps you could have learnt

enough to hold a woman of mettle

in your hands, keep close to your heart

(I just came stopped by

and here she goes off on a tangent

best known to herself

my girlfriend should be anxious now)

but you, miserable poor heart

of little sense and zero sentiments

what would you know

how would you fare

any better with such laggardness

so go now, Sir

your girlfriend must be anxious

rush to her please!!!

hold on to what you have at least.

(footsteps receding)