Happy days

When there is an oxytocin rush because you are happy and the weather is good work gets done much quicker. I wish I was always this happy!

Do coconut trees grow in Ireland. Anyone with the slightest knowledge of plants will tell you the answer is no. But of course, we do not listen to others, right. When I brought my little coconut tree I was warned that it was a coconut tree and not a coriander plant. I knew I had to dig three feet to put it in and have sandy soil as filler. I was looking at sitting in a pot inside for the past few days and today because I was in a good mood and I had finished my work early I thought I will get to this.

I had done nothing other than spending some time in the community garden this year. My garden has been uncared for. Today I was going to change that. My impending trip also means a few plants from plants had to go into the soil so they will survive until I come back at least.

Even though I had not done much in the garden, I still had to pull out the last few carrots, beetroot, onion, which I had planted earlier. My unloved strawberry patch was looking sad. I had planted peas and got some of them growing. I also have thyme, oregano, rosemary, basil (which was transferred to the soil today), spinach, chard, mint, spring onion, etc. So today I got up and cleaned up my garden space, not too much but yes I did. I got the coconut tree on to the ground. Cleared the veggie patch and a bit of the strawberry patch, put my chrysanthemums on the soil and cleaned up my succulent plant tower.

A lot of hard work done, hope to get some good sleep tonight after all that.

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Raging…

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I am breaking my self imposed ban on posting complaint posts!

I am just back from a hospital appointment for which I had to wait one and a half years for a start. Then I go in to find out that none of the documents my GP had to send in was there in the hospital. Looks like they misplaced my son’s referral and also all the other papers that had to go with my son and my daughter’s referral.

I had asked for an assessment for a couple of things, the doctor I was sent to after all this was doing physical exams, asked if they were healthy, eating healthy if they had constipation and because everything was ok I was sent away asking to come back after a year!

On top of this, she said she would recommend my kids to go to school. She had no clue what homeschooling was. When I told her that my kids were not locked up inside the four walls of the house and that my kids did climbing, swimming, tennis, gymnastics, chess, board games, scouts and academics with the Center for Talented Youth she turned around and congratulated my husband on being organised and keeping everything in order!

If anything I was the one who worked hard to get this hospital appointment, to get to each session that they get outside home, to drive kids, to make sure the payment for each class goes in on time, etc. Why is it the man is praised and the woman who does everything is not even looked at and that too by another woman? When will things ever change?

OK. Rant over! I have to go back to supporting my kids now, while their father is stuck in another endless meeting…

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Thank you!

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To the lady that walked to me in the mall and shook hands with me and asked me if I would like to share some fish she had bought, thank you!

Just to explain to others what happened. It is my little girl’s birthday tomorrow so I took her and my son out shopping. As we walked into the supermarket, my kids were telling me that I should use real coconut milk rather than the store bought ones for their aapam for breakfast tomorrow morning. Saying this we walked into the fresh fish section. I usually ask them if they would like fresh fish and buy what they ask for.

This time there were sardines and  I know my son likes sardines. He was super excited so I decided to buy them. I asked the guy at the counter how much it costs. He said something and I know whatever it costs, I would have bought it anyway. I asked him for about 10 sardines (just for the kids) and as he was weighing them I realised they were not so fresh after all and when I mentioned that to him, he said he had the best 9 pieces (which I realised weren’t so best after all when I came home and cleaned them) for me and would pack them. I did hear a lady beside me buying monkfish. For a moment I thought monkfish would be good to have in a fish curry. But then walked around the supermarket, randomly picking things and yapping away with my kids.

When we finished our shopping we came out and continued our fun banter when I heard someone call me. I turned back to see this lady with her two grown-up children. I felt lost because I did not recognise her as someone that I knew. I stopped anyway. She came to me and said “Hi” and shook hands with me. I smiled back at her still wondering if I knew her from somewhere. Then she said, “I saw you buying fish, do you like fish?” I found that a strange question. Of course, I like fish. Why else would I buy some? But I smiled and said “Yes’. Then she asked me if I liked Salmon and I said yes I do. She said, “I brought two pieces would you like to take one?” I found this kind of strange. I just managed to ask, “Why ?”. She said, “No particular reason, I just felt like it”.

Then she went on to look into her bag to get the salmon for me when she realised that the fishmonger had put both the pieces together in one pack. So she asked me if I would like to take Monkfish. That is when it hit me. She probably thought that I couldn’t afford to buy fish and that is why I bought the cheap fish which wasn’t best and she wanted to do me a favour. That was super sweet of her to do what she did. It was just that we love sardines and that is why we bought it, not because it was cheap.

I said if she had extra fish, she could freeze it anyway and she had two grown-up kids and I am sure they would gladly eat it and walked away after thanking her for her kindness.

It was such a beautiful gesture. Thank you! (And by the way, even though the sardines weren’t fresh, they are gone already! )

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I found my tribe

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I am 45 years, six months and something days. And yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay I found my tribe finally. I have had friends, best friends, close friends, family, acquaintances and I am known to be generally quite friendly and I am a person who can talk to a random person on the street.

It struck me this morning how as a poppy I have always been misunderstood. And today in an online group of poppies, I feel perfectly happy. This is my tribe with its quirks. This is me. I can understand what they say and they, me.

I am not for labels, I am not for putting people into boxes but I realise that my brain is wired differently and a lot of what I do is not understood by people. A simple act of trying to be there for someone was misunderstood by the person as taking up all their time and space. I went into my shell hurt because I knew what exactly I wanted to do and it was nowhere close to what the other person as thinking. But here I am in this group of people that I have never met but only online conversations for a good while now and the posts there always bring a smile on my face because that would be me.

I hope each one of you find your tribe too and let go of what was not yours and embrace joy and happiness

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Different perspectives

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Saw this quote today and thought to myself one could feel desperate about the situation with increasing consciousness or one could move aside that despair and do something about it and someone immediately mentioned, that their despair is not about mundane trivial things their despair is about mankind and the universe.

Well, who decides whose thought or problem is trivial anyway? So I had to write this, I wanted to write much more but I am going to stick to just a couple of examples here.

What I say might sound silly to you, but think about it… nothing about whole life and universe comes without its small bits which are mundane, right? I’ll gve you a few examples. It is nearly summer here (will be only nearly summer, really don’t see summer arriving full-fledged). Last week at the community garden I was out in the sun. It was about 17-19 deg C and I got a sunburn. A very simple mundane problem, right. When I talk about this to my close friends they laugh at me going you come from a country where the sun burns you alive. 40 deg C is quite common and you complain about 17 deg C? This brings me to something that I think a lot about, not so mundane. I always think about climate change. Even when people tell me that individuals cannot make any change. What has me getting sunburnt in 19 deg C got to do with climate change? Well, the reason that I get sunburnt here in spite of it being a lot cooler is that there is no pollution here, so the sun is a lot harsher on the skin here compared to India where the temperature is a lot higher. Again I tell people how 21 years ago when I first left India it was cooler by at least 5 degrees and that 5 degrees make a lot of difference. People have now started using A/C everywhere which contributes more to climate change. Fewer trees, more cars on the road, more pollution and what not. Brings me back to planting more trees where I can and when I can and volunteering at the community garden to have plants, trees, and get my own fruits and veg (the more fruit and veg that I use comes from outside the country, my carbon footprint increases). I try and use public transport as much as I can, I reduce the heating and wear extra warm clothes when possible, for three years in Italy I had no car because I wanted to use the public transport system. What looked like a simple sunburn issue of one individual is actually a global problem if you look at it. What are we leaving for our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren? What should we do to make their life better? It is not mundane anymore. I try in spite of being told time and again that my thoughts and what I do don’t matter. I took the kids to a climate change protest and came back disillusioned because of all the noise pollution they were creating. Now we are trying to bring in people to talk to our homeschooling kids. Not to disillusion them but to help them think of various alternatives and make a positive change rather than feel desperate and not know what to do.

And then comes the simple issue of breastfeeding. How can something as mundane as a baby’s food solve a problem about the universe, right? Think about it. A breastfeeding mother is taking care of both her and her child’s health. Not just short term but she is setting the foundation for a healthy life for her baby for a life time. She is saving financially by not giving in to the formula trap, not bringing in more waste (breastfeeding is zero waste) by buying formula tins, bottles, sterilisers, etc. If she is a working mom, she is saving on the number of days of leave she will take because of her baby’s illness. The child and mother are less of a burden in the country’s health system in the long run too. Children who are breastfed longer feel more secure and grow up as secure individuals. Their IQ is also higher. Something as simple as food for the baby can reflect in so many things. I am not even going to explain further on this. But think about it. By using big words and saying big things are we trying to prove ourselves better than the others? Are we trying to alienate others from us?

I don’t know. Just different perspectives I suppose.

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Lonely world

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Yesterday I had a happy day, but it ended in a heartbreaking moment. I cried myself to sleep way past midnight.

What was interesting was that I could share my happy moment with just two people, hoping they would understand and share my happiness. Even there one of them didn’t even bother replying.

When you don’t have people to share your happy moments, how many do you think you will have to share a heartbreak?

Sometimes I feel it is my fault that I am worried about how others will feel about my happiness or sadness and do not share. But the wall has gone up much much higher now. Probably as we grow older that is what happens to everyone or maybe it is just me. I’ve always thought others were the same as me. It took ages to realise that I am a unique nut case. I know that sounds funny, it is actually funny when I think of it now.

Anyway, wanted to share here, this is a space where people don’t know me and where hardly read any of this, so I can at least say I cried and not worry about if these friends of mine will come back and talk to me tomorrow.  Who likes cry babies? Who likes to make friends who have problems? Who has time to listen to other’s sad stories or help sort other people’s baggage?

Do I need friends? Do I have friends? I don’t know any answers. But I am happy in my new found space. This is me, leave it or take it. I cry when I am upset and I do get upset. I laugh when I am happy and yes I feel happy quite a lot too. Take me as I am or leave me. I am not bothered about your judgements. Even if you are in my first circle, I will kindly request you to leave if you can’t take me as I am. Good bye and good luck!

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Chale Aana….

 

Water

5:30 pm, I am driving back from the library, smiling to myself, humming along with the radio completely off note and dancing in my seat at traffic signals. I must look crazy to random people on the street, I dare not look at the car in the next lane. My kids reassure me as usual that i am right in guessing what others are thinking about me. I laugh with them as usual

i reach home and skim through the million messages on my phone. Most of them are boring work. Then I see M’s message. A link he has sent. https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=mNxd1GEDYiQ  I like his sense of music, he always sends me beautiful music. i click on the link and drop the phone on the dining table and proceed to find something for the kids to eat. And then the music starts. I turn around automatically. There is something about this music that makes me feel that I have heard it before. Something that I can relate to the very first time I hear it. Itis melodious, beautiful just mesmerizing. I kind of hum along as I work away for the next two and a half minutes. When it finishes I feel elated. I want the song to go on and on forever. I play it again. even the kids are not complaining about me playing some random Hindi song. What about this song makes me feel good – the music, the voice, the lyrics, the video? Not sure what, maybe the whole package.

I go looking for my ear phones. I don’t want to bore them more when I play it again, actually, more like I don’t want to share it with them, not that they care. They are lost in their world. I don”t talk about music to everyone. i want to share it with someone. I share it with the one person I sometimes share music with. I know there would be no comments, nothing, but I can’t think of anyone else to share it with. When you are happy and you want to share it with someone… ii is the same feeling. I share it anyway.

I come upstairs and settle in my bed hoping to get some work done. But instead search for the movie, realise that the movie is not going to be released till another two weeks. I then impulsively check when it would be released here and notice that it could be released in the chain of cinemas here, a chance that it could be released close to home. Maybe I could sneak out an evening with a friend or just by myself to watch the movie.

So, instead of working I ended up wasting time doing random things till dinner time. I serve dinner for the kids still listening to the same song on repeat. I sit down at the table with them. Even though I don’t eat dinner usually, sometimes. I have a turmeric latte or a hot chocolate. Today was a hot chocolate day, I topped it up with a couple of malt teasers and a small block of dark chocolate. A luxury I have some days. They have their dinner, each reading their own book

From where I am sitting I can see outside into my garden. I had left some lemon rice and water for the birds for tomorrow morning. But of course it was early and the birds had come for their dinner. I look at the little sparrow which gathers up a few grains in its beak and flies away. Then there is this big fat sparrow, trying to mess up my vegetable patch. The sparrow seems to chase away other birds from there. I wonder what it was doing. Was it going to lay an egg or two or more? I get up with a smile on my face and go about finishing my work as I send the kids up to get ready for bed.

I go up and ask the kids what they want to do for the half an hour we spend together every night. They say they don’t want to watch air crash investigation (disappointed) or Lego star wars (relieved) for a change. They want to do up the sign board that we promised for our community garden while googling random people and playing random songs.  They tell me how horrible my handwriting is, just like how horrible my singing is. So we sat down and did the sign board together, they say they will do most of the work and I could join them in doing bits without messing it up. I agree and let them do what they want. They did play songs but I had my ear phones on with low volume so I could still hear my song on repeat.

Now they are in bed, much later than usual. Usually when the man I am married to is out of town we hit bed early. I was in bed at 9:30 last night Today it is more than half an hour late, but who cares. I am sitting here at nearly 11:00 enjoying my music and writing this. Once this is done, I will get back to finishing my work and I have tons of it to finish before tomorrow morning.

Thank you M for sending me this link, I am enjoying this and please keep sending me good music. Reminds me of our days together 24 years ago when we used to talk about music. Reminds me of the night when you, B and I sat in the darkness of a power cut and B sang ‘ek akela is.shaher …” Till date I have not been able to listen to that song without thinking of that night. Some memories stay on forever and so will this night and this song…

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