My mom & My mom
My spiritual journey started at a very young age. I remember, as a child, I always felt a divine intervention in everything I did. Being a quiet kid at school and home, I found solace in talking to a “Jesus, I trust in you” poster. I remember, when I came back from school, I closed the doors of my room and spoke to this person in front of me whom I addressed as my friend, my Father. Endless talks about the day, my insecurities, fears, and joy.
Then and now, nothing has changed. I never had a habit of taking out time to pray or read the Bible, but I have been in conversation with Jesus in the happiest moments and in the trying times.
I say a thank you when I am happy and I ask for strength when in doubt.
Is there a childhood memory that you could connect with from this. I’d love to read it in the comments section below.
Life has always been uncertain. But this year, it has been different. Every day we wake up to a news that gives us reminders about the fragility of the Life.
So when everything is temporary, the best thing to do is appreciate the present – the gifts that we posses in form of mother nature, our family, our loved ones, ourself and everything that holds a dear place in our heart.
I pray may you and your loved ones be protected and be safe. God bless!
The whiteness of the lily do not rob the little violet of it’s scent nor the daisy of its simple charm.
If every tiny flower wanted to be a rose, spring would lose its loveliness.
St. Therese of Lisieux
A man whom I will call Akash, came rushing with a suitcase in his hands. Behind him was a young woman, let’s call her Vidya. He checked for their seat which turned out to be next to me.
Seeing me, I could sense that he was very relieved. He started inquiring my destination. I said, “Bhopal”.
He took out his phone for a video call. I was totally surprised when he handed over his phone to me and asked me to talk.
That was the moment I realized what was happening. The couple were differently abled, none of them could hear or speak.
On the other side of the phone was a very graceful woman. She had a very beautiful and genuine smile on her face. When she started speaking all she wanted was for me to assist her daughter at her destination.
There was no reason I would have denied this request. Akash left bidding goodbyes.
There was a pause for few minutes. I wanted to engage Vidya in conversations, but at the same time I had no clue how to do that. All of a sudden, she started asking me something in signs. From what I could make out she was asking about her berth. But she wasn’t confident if I understood. She immediately video called her mom and asked her the same thing. Her mom explained that she wanted to sleep after her lunch. And then she also stressed that there was no rush.
Sometime passed, I got back to my reading.
Meanwhile, I could see Akash and Vidya on a video call again. Expressing as much as they could, to let the other one know how much they loved and cared for.
It was a rare sight for me, because these days, it is the other way around where the priviledged people have nothing to speak as there are more interesting things going on which can’t be missed on their phones.
There were lots of questions going on in my mind- why did this happen to them, their life would be so difficult, how can a mother be so calm despite of all her fears, how can there be so much love? Why can’t this world be like them? Why don’t we value our blessings? Why do we keep chasing for more? And these questions went on until I chose to stop. 🙎♀️
Visiting a new city is like meeting a new person. From the moment I land, I am in conversation with everything I see or encounter. To me, it’s more than just checking off something from my bucket list. When I am there I want to make the most out of each moment. It feels like the city says to me, please don’t go, not yet, there is still so much to see and talk.
Shimla! Was always on my wishlist. And finally getting to visit was a dream come true. Sharing a few pictures from my recent visit.
This was a first attempt, so this doesn’t look as neat as it should have been. 😀😁
She studied all corners of the small clinic. The walls had been converted into shelves housing all kinds of medicines. In between, lay a table and few chairs for the patients and visitors.
Dr. Ryan was attending to a patient. She took a corner seat, anxious and worried, for the purpose of her visit was her husband, that too just few days after their wedding. A few minutes passed by and her husband took his seat facing the doctor.
There was dead silence, she couldn’t make out why. Finally, her husband broke the silence and showed his recent reports. He had a high blood pressure. The doctor listened very attentively to what he was saying and then took his blood pressure monitor from one of the drawers.
To her surprise, all of a sudden, Dr.Ryan started singing. She couldn’t recall which one it was except for the fact that it had to be a very old Hindi song. She was taken back to her memories of waiting to watch “Rangoli” on Doordorshan the only show that would have played the oldest songs that anyone could ever imagine.
The doctor paused for a second, his hands still at work, diagnosing and then signaled her husband to continue the song where he stopped. And he did as he was asked.
She sat there befuddled, watching an health check-up that turned out to be a duet.
My younger self,
To you, I owe my life, my world, and what I am today. I am thankful to the little dreamer in you who always reminded me of this beautiful world and the endless opportunities that were ahead of me. You made me realize, no matter how weak I may seem to the world, the power is within me to achieve what I always dreamed of.
If you have started thinking that it’s all because of you then you are wrong There were many obstacles, fears, and challenges that I had to face during my journey. But that’s why we are blessed with wonderful people around us both on the personal and professional level, isn’t it? Over these years, I have realized that in the end, there is nothing such as a good or bad experience. When I look back and connect the dots, I realize that everything happened for a reason and it falls in place at the right time. Neither too early, not too late.
I want to let you know that you are still in me, no matter how wise I become – to cherish the little things in life, to express what I feel through my writing, to offer a helping hand to the needy, to spread happiness and the list goes on.
Lots of love!
The way you see is the measure of the world ~Rumi
Both the title and the verse credits to “The Illustrated Rumi” A new translation by Philip Dunn, Manuela Dunn, and R. A. Nicholson
Despite of all the rush, happy to have found opportunities to go back to my childhood memories.. Counting the little chicks, or chasing them alongwith Grandma.. Life was so careless back then, though it’s only now we realize.
Christmas brings to me beautiful memories from my childhood. Known to be an average student during my school days, getting an entry into a school activity was always hard to believe.
The first one to name was preparing for a Christmas carol along with a group of 20 more kids from my class. We were handed the lyrics and the song was played for us to hear and practice the tune. “Silent Night, Holy Night” the song played and was played, again, and, again, and again.
The more it was played, the more I fell in love with the idea of waiting for little Christ on a peaceful and Silent night, to an extent that even now this memory is still so fresh and preserved in my heart.
What is your Christmas memory?
Last weekend, after lunch I stopped by the Belgian Waffle to buy waffles for my niece and nephew. Going through the menu and deciding what to buy is always a pain with the fancy names.
So I decided to go by the pictures and whatever looked best. Since it was a takeaway, I had to wait for a while until I could get my order done. So instead of taking a seat I just looked around to see the artwork.
Even though it was a small place where hardly 10 people can be accommodated, they had done a good work to make it look cool. I was impressed!
However, I left the place with the below message alongwith the waffles.
Found this from a page I follow..
If you believe in angels, they are around you in the form of your close friends and family and so is the belief in evil. A human has the potential to bring out both either the best or the worst in you. That’s why it becomes so important to surround ourselves with people who can bring out the best.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have found those few yet close friends whom I consider as my angels because they were placed in different phases of my life and helped me to be successful in the journey so far.
When I feared to take risk, the voice said “Go on” I’m here
When I was sad, the voice said “tell me”
When I was happy, the voice said “Why don’t you share your happiness with me? ”
When I felt stagnant, the voice said “Take a different route”
When I told myself I am not worthy to deserve the best, the voice said, ” You deserve more than anyone else”
And this goes on forever..
Thankful to all my friends for being the best ones. And specially all my readers. Now you can also follow me on Instagram, twitter and Facebook. Please find the links below:
This one came up in my Facebook memory. I had shared a post by someone. Thought it’s a good way to begin our day. 🙂 🌸
Finding a reason to be happy? To feel energized? To be determined? To be grounded? Watch – Fatemah Qaderyan speak about her journey.
The stories of refugees and there struggles have always moved me. These days, we have a tendency to feel bad about our own life when we see all those posts on travel, food, fashion, weight loss and the list goes on. We follow a page based on our liking and over a period of time we tend to start getting frustrated on ourselves assuming our life and our achievements isn’t a perfect one.
I am no exception and that’s why I try not to immerse myself too much into it by also staying updated and reading stories of the real heroes whose life may not sound glamorous but still have so much to tell the world with there strength and courage to overcome all the odds.
Their stories is a also an opportunity to be thankful for what we have around us the freedom, the right to education, support of the families, our friends and everyone who have been a part of our journey.
Leaving you all with this powerful story of Fatemah.. Be inspired!
“Me, I wanted to live up to my name and be happy. That’s not to say I wasn’t annoyed, but everyone should have a bird singing inside them as well as a crow cawing” 🐦 🎶 😊
~ Happy Liu
From Happy Dreams
A Novel by Jia Pingwa
From my visit to the Laxmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara last month.
How many times in our lives do we end up in a situation, where we are compelled to think, “Wait, do I deserve this? What wrong have I done to anyone? I’ve always been kind to people and their needs, why can’t they think like me?”
How many times? I think the answer is, each moment of our life. It can place us in similar situations. Well, the good news is – if we want to get over this, we need to extend our kindness to people who are actually in need. Whom we can never expect to repay for what we do for them.
When we give to someone who we have never known, who we know can never repay us back – it naturally doesn’t make us expect. The expectations are what leads to disappointments. The people whom we touch through this kindness have only good words and blessings for us. That’s what is more fulfilling than any wealth in this world.
Have you felt the same way? Please do share your experience in the comments section below. I’d love to know your stories too and how you are bringing happiness into someone else’s life through your acts of kindness.
Wishing a blessed day ahead!
Me: Why do I always have to face difficulties? There are people who have no struggles in life and they are free to choose a life of their choice.
Her: I don’t care what others do. If your life is a struggle, I’ll be proud of you because that is what will make you stronger, wiser and humble. On occasions, when you think of boasting about your achievements, think about your journey and be grateful. When you have kids, let them know what struggles were, so they don’t take life for granted. For every struggle you go through now will bring a brighter future.
Is there any advice that you received which is close to your heart? Do share it here in the comments section below.
If someone were to ask who accompanies during my daily commute to work, the answer will be books, music and occasionally movies. Thanks to unlimited data availability, my new music player is now YouTube with an endless list of songs, movies and interesting videos. Despite of this huge collection, my search usually ends at “Ustad Hotel” for scenes, songs and background scores.
For those who have not seen this movie, the story is about a young man Faizy aspiring to become a well-known chef. After finishing his course in Hotel Management, his father wants him to join his business, however Faizy is hell-bent to go abroad to pursue his dreams. This results into a dispute because of which Faizy’s father forcibly takes his passport so that he cannot travel.
Faizy unable to handle this, leaves for his grandfather’s place who runs a hotel on a small-scale and takes up work there. It’s here that Faizy is introduced to the beautiful concepts of life by his grandfather who is a man of principles and known for his care for the poor. Though his grandfather is tough on him at work, they share a special bonding with each other.
When everything seemed perfect, Faizy gets an offer to join as an Executive chef abroad. During his conversation with his grandpa, he expresses how much this offer meant to him. Maybe this was all he was waiting for and he wanted to be successful in life. His grandfather is caught up with a cardiac attack, unable the bear the thought of losing his grandson. Though he is out of danger, he sends Faizy with a letter to his friend, Narayanan Krishnan in Madurai, Chennai.
Faizy follows as requested and goes to Chennai. He hands over the letter to Narayanan. Narayanan reads the letter, the content of which mentioned said that grandpa wanted Narayanan to be an eye-opener for Faizy. During his stay, he sees the unsung hero, Narayanan, who left his 5-star hotel job to serve the poor and needy after witnessing an old man eating his own waste because of hunger. He changed the purpose of his life to satisfy the needs of these people who were unwanted and give them love and affection.
Before leaving Madurai, Faizy is requested to make a special Biriyani for the mentally disabled kids at an orphanage. While accepting the request, Faizy never realized this was going to be his life changing moment.
He makes the best Biriyani he would have made so far and serves to the kids. The sight at the place moves him completely, seeing the challenges of the innocent kids. After the event, he sits there with tears and a heavy heart when all of a sudden the kids starts flowing in and writes something on his hands. He could not understand what it meant. One of the teacher tells him that they are saying “Thank You” in a code language.
He goes back to his Grandfather’s place with a new purpose . However, by the time he reaches his Grandfather goes for a pilgrimage leaving everything behind.
What I have tried to describe will not be enough to capture the soul of this movie. The conversations between the grandfather-grandson duo has now become an integral part of my life inspiring me to look at each day as a blessing and an opportunity to make a difference. I may probably not be able to take a big step like Faizy or Narayana, but I still have my family, friends, colleagues and a big community of needy people; whom we meet in our journey called “Life” and I’ll forever be on the lookout for such opportunities.
This was probably taken a couple of years ago. I usually leave one of the windows in my room open for fresh air. Once when I came back from work, I found two little birds hiding in the corner of the window. Getting a little closer, I was able to make out that they were building themselves a home.
Since I also wanted something to engage myself with, I let them stay there and left the windows open everyday so that they can complete their task for which they were so actively in the process of building that little nest.
I used to check their progress. There were three eggs already in the nest hatching. Days passed by. I started seeing a change in the activities of the parents. They were now coming with food for their little ones. I climbed on my bed to get a close-up view to find three cute babies with an open mouth asking for food 🙂
This was indeed enough for me to feel good about my decision to let them stay. Building a home within a home!
Is a place and time like this.. Nothing to feel stressed about, no reason to rush.. Just stay still and enjoy the moment..
Life is a gift wrapped and breathed into us on our birth-day and each day in our lifetime it surprises us in special ways.
Just a few hours ago, I posted my blog on the Liebster Award. Now, I am so pleased to write a post on “The Blogger Recognition Award”. The only difference is that I’m self-nominating myself 😛 because I was nominated for something else by a very creative and dear writer PoeticBells but I accidentally wrote on this one. However, I didn’t wanted to delete what I already wrote. Probably, this also means I should take a break from work 😛
PoeticBells, as the name suggests, the page is full of beautiful works of poetry. Indeed a dearly loved blogger. Do wait until my next post on Gettoknowmetag. 😛
I think it just happened with a series of events that happened in my life. One of which was definitely my French classes. I did write a post on this few months ago. Do check this out. Apart from this, as I had mentioned in my earlier posts – being an introvert I thought this was the best way to express and connect with different people from around the world. Someday, I would love to publish a book.
My two pieces of advice for new bloggers:
- I think there are different phases in the life of a writer/blogger. As we begin we aren’t aware of the choice and likes of our readers. Despite that, don’t hesitate to write what you think or want to express. Write for yourself in the beginning. As you get to know more about the readers and their choices eventually you would realize your writings would have also changed without any efforts, coz you know what your readers want.
- Observe – Whether you are reading a book, a blog, talking to people, travelling, driving, etc. observe it closely. You will find ways to connect and write something meaningful which your readers will be able to connect with.
Here are the rules:
1. Write a post to show your award.
2.Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
3. Give a brief story of how your blog started.
4. Give two pieces of advice for new bloggers.
5. Nominate 2-3 bloggers who you believe deserve to be recognized. Comment on their blogs, to let the nominees know they have been nominated.
“I stepped into the room along with a few girls and walked straight to the front row where we saw some vacant seats. A session it was I had heard but I can’t quite remember the agenda of the session. It was a full house and I could see the presenters getting ready. Within a few minutes, there was silence and the lead presenter started off with his opening remarks. “Thanks everyone for gathering here – we will all go to another place where we will conduct the session and also do some activities”
“Oh, oh, wasn’t this supposed to be that place?” – I thought. While I was still thinking, I could see the crowd already moving towards the venue. I kept waiting to find a familiar face with whom I could reach the destination, since without a vehicle it would have been difficult to reach on time. I came out and saw there were no one left, it was just me standing and thinking about the way to reach.
“I wish Charlie could come and drop me at the location” – I said to myself. The next moment, there he was with that enchanting smile. I couldn’t believe my eyes, I called him at the top of my voice, “Charlie, Charlie, please help me. I need to reach that place as soon as possible”. He didn’t utter a word, but signaled to hop on to his bike. On our way, I kept enjoying the beauty, greenery, and the calmness of the city.
I didn’t realize when we reached the location. Just as I was thanking him for his huge help, a little girl came to me and requested,”Can you help me climb the stairs? There is a class going on and I need to reach at the earliest?” I observed her closely – she had difficulty walking because of her twisted ankle. I waved a good-bye to Charlie and held the little girl’s hand and climbed the first step. I heard a rattling noise. When I looked back there were over 10 more children with similar difficult moving towards the stairs.
I helped them reach their destination and seated them for their special session. Before I could reach for my session, I looked out of the door once more if I could get a glance of Charlie. And there he was, at an elderly lady’s assistance. Once again, I called him and waved him good-bye.”
I woke up to the sound of my alarm and realized it was all a dream – being a part of a big crowd, getting the opportunity to meet Charlie in person and also giving someone a helping hand. The feeling might probably be difficult to put in words, but I felt lighter and happier.
I am sure by now the reader is interested to know who Charlie is? He is definitely not a superhero nor is he a supernatural figure.
He is the protagonist of the 2015 Malayalam movie – “Charlie“. He is depicted as a carefree person who is always found to be helping the needy, giving them reasons to live a fun-filled and meaningful life. His energy, his enthusiasm is contagious. If angels do walk the earth then they probably take the form of such human beings. You don’t need divinity, all you need is a big heart to love and lend.
Often we end up into situations where we don’t feel confident in our own potential. But there is a voice that keeps reminding us of our worth and don’t fail to encourage no matter what. That voice is not our heart or our soul, it’s that friend who is with us through our thick and thin.
Hassan the quiet and the most important character from “The Kite Runner” is a reminder of that friend who genuinely mean when they say or feel – “For you a thousand times over”.
“Hey, listen” came a voice from the front as I was walking towards my office. I looked up and found a woman in her middle age carrying a basket full of fruits. Assuming she was calling someone walking behind me, I ignored the call and moved forward.
“Hey, listen – I am talking to you.” This one came directly for me. I stopped and asked, “Are you talking to me?” “Yes, I am, I’ve been calling you since I know you are lucky for me” – said the woman.
“Lucky? How can I be lucky for you?” “Because, today is New Year and I am looking for someone who can help me start my business well and I think you can be lucky for me. All you have to do is to wish me New Year open heartedly, take some fruits from me and give me whatever you deem fit for the same”
“But.. but I don’t need any fruits right now.”, said I. “That is fine, you can give it to someone else but take these fruits from me” came the response.
Nonplussed, I said – “Okay, give me some grapes and pomegranate, how much does this cost”?
“Well, you can give me Rs.200 for one box. That’s what they charge in shops”. She took out two boxes of grapes and handed over to me. “I just need one box, please”, I clarified to her.
“I told you, you are lucky for me. So please take these two boxes, I’ll also give you few pomegranates free of charge” – said the woman.
Even before I could say anything, I was standing with two boxes and some pomegranates in my hand because I knew there was no escape. I handed over Rs.400 and continued to my destination.
All the time on my way back, I kept thinking – maybe she was just applying a marketing strategy or maybe she was genuinely looking for someone to start her year well with some good business. Nevertheless, the cost occurred was worth it, since what I got from her was healthier than what I would have spent in a restaurant for a burger or a pizza.
And above everything else, I was satisfied thinking about the woman and the stories she will get to narrate at home.
My love for music, my role model and my roots.
A.R. Rahman “Encore” , an experience of a lifetime and a dream come true. So awestruck by the beauty of the sets and above all the patience with which the concert was performed by Rahman Sir.
I could see him doing everything at a time – playing music on multiple instruments, singing and with a smile on his face cheering up each and everyone of his crew members.
Makes me feel he is not just an extraordinary person but an institution of learning to be a better human being. Wonder how much people associated with him have learnt all through these years.
Long live Rahman sir and his music. Jai Ho!
I wish I had a better camera to capture this, nevertheless it can’t replace the live experience I got to see the wonder and beauty of this creation.
A woman of substance, a face as bright as the sun and love as the flow of the water – that’s my grandma.
She left us to the heavenly abode three years back but she still lives in our hearts even closer than during her earthly life.
Through the Grandma’s stories I wish to bring her to the world. I want them to know what it means to consume oneself for the love of humanity.
I pray to God that He may give me the wisdom and the strength to portray her life exactly as it was.
More to come soon!