Touche 5

By now, it is well known that little A says or does something that results in a “Touche” post every few months or so. Why am I so surprised then, each time it happens?

So. I have this quote on our little blackboard this week.

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Little A walks past the board early this morning, and says, “Ok Mommy, what word would that be?”

I was stumped. It was before my first cup of tea, so I wasn’t particularly alert yet. But don’t think caffeine would have helped much with my situation anyway. So, did the only thing that I could come up with. Hemmed and hawed and ended up with a kissy sound.

Little A was v. unimpressed. “That’s not a word, Mommy. And one word won’t do anything. You need at least a whole kind sentence, ok?” insisted my stickler.

Well. If you put it like that. 🙂

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Photographic Memory

Surely v. strange when you see a photo of Piazza San Marco on a travel magazine cover and your thoughts are nothing like:

  • Wow, what an awesome photo, we’ve been here
  • Oh, how breathtaking were the views from the top of that Campanile
  • how 8-year old little A, all flushed and happy, chased after the hundreds of pigeons in that square
  • how absolutely glorious and perfect that summer afternoon was
  • how the pistachio and chocolate gelatos melted in our mouths

None. of. that.

Instead, the first (and only) thought that popped into my head was:

Ha! I know EXACTLY where the toilets are. To the right, just out of range of the photo. And grrr…. how super expensive to use they were!

Che, really gotta start embracing the larger life here, I say! 😉

Priorities

My gentle readers (if you are still out there),

Here are some earth-shattering questions for you to consider.

First of all, do you keep a to-do list? If not, you are done here. You can go home now.

If you are still here – when you have 20 things on your to-do list, which ones do you tackle first?

Do you hunker down and get through the most important task first (like all the good books say you should)?

Or do you start with the easiest possible tasks and cross them off your list happily, until you get to a point when only the most ugh! tasks remain?

At which point, do you then start polling your gentle readers on how they manage their priorities? 😉

Che, done with all my yummy tasks for the day. Afternoon tasks are looking mildly bleak. Tea time is at least 3 hours away. Best get on with it, I guess.

Hope you did better than me with your priorities this morning! 🙂

Today’s Smiles

Things that made me smile today:

  • Picking up little N from school at 5 pm and driving her straight to an activity that will go on for another couple of hours (oh, my hard-working munchkin!), getting there early, and sitting for a few minutes in the car with her catching up while she snacked on pasta and masala chai;
  • Calling to check on little A, who had been left alone at home to continue with her homework, and hearing, “Mommy, don’t worry, the robbers are not here yet”;
  • Making pongal and onion vadais for dinner (looks v. promising!); and
  • Listening to little A belt out K-pop music (“Wedding Dress”) on the piano with such aplomb as is rarely seen during regular piano practice.

Happy Wednesday! 🙂

Multitasking Mania

Surely something’s wrong when I am standing fully dressed in work clothes and:

  • Making dosais for my breakfast
  • Eating aforementioned dosais while hovering between the stove and the nearby countertop
  • Making mini-trips between dosai bites to the fridge and microwave to plan and pack my lunch
  • Brewing my coffee on the side to take with me on my ride to work

And still giving sidelong glances at my laptop sitting on the kitchen table, with a nagging feeling that I should be more productive and get a head start on my work rather than waste time on inessentials like food.

It’s going to be a busy work day, but really, my first meeting is not for another three hours.  So what’s up with the constant drive to be productive?  Che!

Are you this crazy too?  Please tell me you are. 🙂

Speed

There’s more to life than increasing its speed.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

I recently realized that I have a preference to rush through things.  Especially, mundane tasks where I don’t see a huge return or value, or when I am doing something for myself.

Like when I am out getting a haircut, or shopping for myself, and it happens to take more than a half hour.

Thinking back, wondering when this might have started (yes, I had some fantastically idle time this week), went all the way back to grad school.  A strange era when, on my own for the first time, I did grocery shopping or laundry (ugh!) only when absolutely necessary.  Just so I didn’t “waste” precious time that could have been spent on studying and research.

The more aware I am that I do this, the more I catch myself doing it.

This evening, after making dinner, decided to do yoga to stretch my aching muscles.  Went upstairs, got settled, and started my warm-up exercises.  First thought that crossed my mind?  “I don’t have time to do 18 repetitions of the warm-ups like they do in yoga class, so I am just going to do 5 repetitions.”  I heard this chatter and found myself wondering “why?”  Dinner was ready, N wasn’t back home from work, Amma was reading, little N and her friends were working on a group project in our living room, and little A was doing her math homework at our kitchen table.  Who in the world was looking for me, and why did I feel like I didn’t have enough time for yoga?

Within a couple of hours, caught myself feeling the same thing again.  I was putting away the laundry upstairs, when I felt like I had to finish quickly and go downstairs, like something or someone needed my immediate attention.  When in fact, N and little A were playing a game of chess, Amma was still reading, and little N’s was in the middle of a violin lesson with her teacher.  I was not even on anyone’s radar.

So, WTF is this, this thing in me that’s urging me to go quicker, and get on with the next thing?  I know that there’s no getting to the end of that to-do list.  Ever.  So what gives?

Hmmmm…. something to think about, huh?

I Wish I Could Tell

Sollathaan ninaikkiren…

Sorry, this is not a post about some deep, dark secret (although, wouldn’t that be fun!).  Some other time, ok?

This post is totally about something else.

Last week, little N had a s&^t load of school stuff to get through one night.  Fabulous supportive mom that I am, decided to give her company (without realizing that she was going to go on till 1 am, but that’s another story).  Made her some masala chai around 10:30 pm, and tucked myself in on the couch across from her.  I usually don’t watch movies on my own, but didn’t think little N would tolerate my just sitting there watching her toil (and let’s face it, making small talk).  So.  Decided to see what was up for viewing in the old tamil movie world.

Landed on “Sollathaan Ninaikkiren”.  Normally, N and I would have by-passed such ancient offerings (N just refuses to look too far back).  But I was left to my own devices, and happened to notice that the movie was made in 1973.  Not such an old movie, I thought to myself.  Hmmm… does everyone have this delusion that the year they were born in was really not that long ago?.  Anyway.  Print was surprisingly decent, so plodded on (and finished it) despite several instances along the way where the resting feminist in me felt quite riled up:

  • Father of three girls: “Oh, one must never be born a girl.”
  • Girl’s family to potential groom’s family: “Girl is a teacher.  But if you don’t want her to go to work, just say the word and she will quit tomorrow.”
  • New bride to husband: “Now that you have tied the thaali around my neck, I am just overwhelmed with respect for you.” (adiye!!!!)
  • Potential groom to girl’s father: “I don’t want to marry your older daughter.  I want to marry her sister.” (And the sister agrees to marry this rat!)

But the movie was not without its plus points.  Chennai from the 1970s looked so uncomplicated in black and white – empty streets, PTC buses, old cars, saree-clad women, sambraani.  Felt soooo nostalgic.  Also, bonus – I only recall seeing Sivakumar act as Rama or Vishnu in most old movies (always oru blue color and constantly smiling, che!).  Watching this movie now, I was totally struck by the young Sivakumar’s resemblance to the Singam (mmmm…got my money back right there, I say!!).

Overall verdict (feminist outrage notwithstanding) – not too shabby for a solo late-nighter. 😉