Wednesday, December 26, 2007

funtime with Albin

There was a sound that was more like the natural vent being used by Albin.

We were standing by the train we were travelling in. It had halted at a station.

I asked Albin from the sound came from.

He very cooly replied, 'From the train'!!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Huge buildings are constructed almost everyday in the City of Mumbai. Cheap labour but exotic and costly buildings. Well let's accept the cheap labour but what about labour safety. Seen in this photograph are labours setting up a scaffolding without any harness or safety devices (They are constructing the12th floor)

Photo collage on Alan

This is Alan my nephew.
He is the life of the Family now. Everyone loves him. He loves everyone.
The first is with his father.
This second snap is Alan trying to stand for the first time.
The third is the Alan cutting the Christmas Cake.
The fourth one is with his Nanny.
Enjoy folks!

Sunday, March 05, 2006

He had a burden to share

He told me he wanted to develop his personality. I told him he could. He wanted to pour out. A burdened soul - one among the so many who carry around a baggage which they don't know how to offload.
I told him he could come to the guest house. And you know what he did.
Well to be precise here was a man - in the words of the Bible - who had known many 'men'.
He was girlish, stinking, with unkempt hair but with a smile on his face. Well you know what I have begun to realize you need to tread on thorns to really smile.
He had wanted love. His parents could not give him that. He was alone. He had longed so much for it that when one did come, he had no issues
The only thing he didn't know was that he had a seen a mirage - yes a mirage!
He chased it. He chased it hard with long hours on the net and an exciting appointment schedule. He wanted to so much to take revenge when he sought his mirage.

He was pouring out and I knew grace had finally caught him. The hound of heaven had found him. I felt really sad when he said, 'I can't look at a woman the same way normal men do. I need another man. I simply can't marry.'

He was surprised when I told him his quench for love will be satisfied. I told him that the Hound of Heaven would not leave him. The one who said,'You are mine' will not leave him. I knew that.

One soul could rejoice. The Hound had found him.

Isn't it clear now, my friend, that the line between what is true and untrue is so very thin? So, so very thin?

the heart

A heart which is true compels you to the truth.

Sometimes life affords very few choices

I was returning after visiting my recently discovered long-lost relatives. They had treated me to a Parish festival meal - duck's meat, pork, fish and what have you. I hadn't done the usual routine in the morning as sometimes my bowels give up on me, especially when I am travelling. I left the place by bus and was to take another bus from this place to Trivandrum. Well this time my tummy started demanding release. Well you can't anything else but obey. I got down from the bus, searched for a place to offload, however, none was available but one run by the Kerala state tourism department - the only western toilet in that place - and that too without a toilet cover! Now I took cover and took off searching for a good hotel. In the meanwhile my stomach was sounding a constant SOS. I walked to the receptionist and asked for the toilet - a western one. To tell you honestly, I was prepared to pay anything for a good ride. I asked for a room. I said I would pay for use. You know what the answer was? No!!!

He showed me another toilet - an Indian one - having no options left, I chose it. You know at times life affords very few choices. It cannot afford many choices. Money loses it value then. Status and achievement lose their value. Nothing at all can afford you a fair chance.
I felt it now. Yes, I felt it now! It had happened two thousand years ago! Yes, Yes! I have felt it today. A truth rediscovered!

Christ didn't have many chances two thousand years ago, when his parents when knocking about doors for a proper place to give him birth. Mother Mary too had 'a tummy upset'. Well, he was born in a manger - the only choice available. He has always known this truth. At times life affords very few choices - very few. He was wiser. Our true brother. He could have used his power. He had used it at other times. Why not now? He allowed himself to be bound by human circumstances. He chose to surrender to God's will in his life - to live like a his brothers, to be affected by the same circumstances; allowing himself to hear a no, to be treated without any privileges; no preferential treatment, no VIP seats. He knew the truth of life. Sometimes life affords very few choices.

Even if you are a Manager, a very rich man, a very powerful man or even a very spiritual man - you know at times life can afford very few choices. Learn to hear a no - and the next time you hear one to smile and walk away.

So cast of your worries of saving for a rainy day, your worries to avoid a that embarrasing moment - no matter what you do sometimes life afforts very few choices. Like it or ... no just like it. Trust me you'll be a lot more freer.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Feel sad for someone with a handicap?

I was sitting at the airport. My flight had been delayed. I saw a man in a wheel chair, middle aged; with a slight hunch. I could see from his behaviour that he was in his fifties. A lady stood beside him, who spoke to him sometimes, her hands folded. Bespectacled, she stood with a look which said, 'couldn't have known this man better'. He was arguing with the airlines staff and could tell from the gestures that he was dissatisfied about something. A pretty looking staff of the airlines had bent down to in what could be seen as a pacifying gesture. Then another young man belonging to the airline joined in the efforts to pacify this man. Every body could makeout that this man was visibly unhappy even after all the efforts to make him happy.
Poor man, what a state he is in. Such a helpless state. This could be anyone's primary reaction. To me it looked like his sickness was a status symbol for him. A crutch that made him feel important. Made him feel wanted. Made him feel wanted. I guess even if someone offered to cure him of his situation he would still have preferred his wheel chair. Such a novel way to be different. Different from the crowd. A wonderful way to get noticed. And such a wonderful way to enjoy the depressing life of false attention. Long live the crutch. Long live the handicap. Is something incurable? or Does he actually desire to be healed. I know what it is. Hey buddy aren't you afraid of leaving the crutch? Aren't to afraid to live a normal unnoticed life? Answer!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Save a flower

Ever tried carrying a flower for someone you love and that too in a crowded train?
Save it for someone special. The stale air of the crowed train and tender whif of the fragrance of the flower. The inconsiderateness of the crowd and the thoughtfulness of the flower. The sad, tired faces in the train and freshness of the flower. You need to save from the push and the squeeze, the tear and the pull, the stamp and the scratch. Yes save the flower. Save the feelings. Ooze it in the compartment, at the door when they climb in. ON the seats where they sit. Save the flower. Keep it fresh. We travel everyday. Save the flower everyday.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Autobiography of a Tubelight in the Church

I was having a disturbed sleep for quite sometime now. In the past weeks, they went past the church, in an auto rickshaw, asking us to exercise caution as there could be flooding in the area. It did create a flutter of emotions and initiated some serious talk about the threat; however, it always stopped at ‘Ah! Last year the waters came only up to the gutters. And the sun rose and set on a very usual busy day for businessmen, servicemen, postmen, watchmen and other men and women.
Since last two days it has been raining quite heavily. It has made me quite worried. Then this evening the auto rickshaw was here again. But the oft repeated response was heard again. I know the entire conversation by heart even now.
It is Monday today. It has been pouring since morning. There has been a flurry of activity in town. The police were here. There were shouts and whistles everywhere. The municipality men were tying ropes across the road – a sign not to move about in the area. Suddenly, the area started filling up. People moved their belonging in a frenzied manner. Some still said, ‘It won’t rise more than this’. But it rose and rose - and rose. Do you know Philip, the parish cook? He saw the water coming. He was in a fix not knowing which of the things to save. Our Lady’s statue lay stranded in the grotto. Surely, she was praying for her flock to be saved. He could not let her be drowned. He waded across the water and fetched her. ‘Well done good and faithful servant’. Two hands and a hundred things. In the confusion, though he hurt his hands, he managed to close the church windows. Philip had made his decision. He had to leave the Church and move to a safer place. I saw his bow before the Blessed Sacrament, then whispering a prayer to Our Lady and jumping off. He could no hear me yelling out to him to save me. The water had risen till half way mark towards the roof of the Church. Philip managed to reach safely to the building on the other side of the road. He could not see me waving out to him. I had consigned myself to my fate. I saw the altar cloth getting soaked in the muddy water. I could imagine the Chasubles and the vestments and the consecrated vessels all taking their turn and getting soaked in the muddy – and mucky water. St. Joseph in the corner was praying continuously. All the other saints too had joined in with their bit. But today nature had come with a vengeance that nothing could withhold. Humanity’s selfishness? Global warming? Artic meltdown? Or the Tsunami’s after effects? Choked drains? Garbage? Or sin? Nature had to wage its war and this was it. I was a mute witness to its fury.
One by one all the articles in the church are getting submerged. I await my turn. I had never prayed so hard. Yet the more I prayed the more it rained. But suddenly I noticed something. The water level hadn’t risen for quite some time now. I surmised the flood waters had reached the sea and the tide had receded. ‘Ah! I would live to tell the tale.
The very next day the parishioners and youth of Ambernath parish pitched in with their efforts to clean the church. They could not believe what they saw. There was muck everywhere. This was the place that they had worshipped in. Then there was a sudden uproar. Someone was yelling out side that the dam had broke open and the entire area would be flooded. I saw a panic stricken lot in the church, all rushing towards the bus and in a jiffy the premises was empty.
Well from then on till today, it has been almost two weeks to get things in place. The final salvo was fired on 15th of August. Father Lancy requested the Parishioners to help in cleaning the church. Yes, that’s when I really saw the community spirit in this small parish. The young and old, men and women, girls and boys – some cleaning chairs, some the walls, some the furniture, some cooking, some arranging – all busy with getting the Lord’s place in order. ‘How can you live in comfortable homes when my dwelling place remains in ruins?’ I could imagine how the Jews would have felt when their temple was desecrated.
Nobody heard me singing Alleluias. I am sure I was singing the loudest. I was so happy to be back in business and to know that the Lord had spared my life. It was indeed exciting to know that Masses had begun. Though my boss has not come to stay with us yet. They stay at Ambernath. Vijay does some cleaning everyday. Water is scarce as electricity keeps coming and going. Things are coming back to normal. But we definitely need help – Anybody?

Saturday, May 28, 2005

How do you decide?

I was asked by a person I have known only recently to lend him some money. I was in a fix whether to lend him money or not? Should I just avoid him? Should I help him? Should I trust him or not? Will he return the money? People haunt you when you have the money and I am sure he would have refused me if I had asked him the same favour. How very tricky!
How will you decide whom to give your money to? What if tomorrow you were in need and someone refuse you? So you see... It's pretty tricky.

do you have faith?

Do you have faith or do are you superstitious? How do you know the difference?
Are you right or wrong? How do you know the difference?
Why do people say I am right and you are wrong? And are very convinced about it.
What is sin and what is not? How do you decide?
Is what mother said the only truth? Or can I find out by myself?
Obey? How much? To what extent? Can you tell?
Can you trust? Whom will you trust? What will you trust?
How can you believe someone? What are things that you will keep in mind?
Sooner are latter you will find out the truth.
Everything in not black or white. It is how you handle the gray that will show your mettle.