26 February 2010

Gifts

Just finished reading the last book in the Twilight series. This post is not a review of the same - my friend has already written a great review (Check here) and I did not feel like re-inventing the wheel. In that book, when the child of the human and vampire is born, she comes with an inherent gift of being able to communicate by creating visuals in the mind of the other person. Though she can speak, she doesn't need to speak because of this gift. This post talks about such gifts.

Even the mother of the child, who becomes a vampire after child-birth, 'discovers' many gifts/talents that were dormant within her. The strange part is that she had that talent even while she was human; she could shield her thoughts from mind-readers unconsciously. Yet, when a total stranger calls her a 'shield', that is when her eyes are opened to her strength. She is then able to physically manifest a shield to protect her family and friends.

This made me realize that there are many talents I have that I've always taken for granted. It always used to make me wonder why I can do some things easily but others are totally clueless about doing those things. This book gave me an insight of how knowledge of such gifts unfolds in its own time. One of my gifts is my emotional intelligence. At the risk of sounding arrogant or a braggart, I've always been able to understand another's motives, what makes them tick, after spending some time with them. I'm able to predict their words and actions and can prepare myself with the right words or behavior in an argument/confrontation with them. Whereas, I've seen others, much older and experienced than me, struggling to understand their spouse,child or parent and be able to establish rapport with them. While it is crystal clear to me what is wrong in their relationship, they seem totally oblivious. Since this was in-born in me (not learned or acquired) I wasn't aware of it until I was well into my adulthood.

This gift had its disadvantages too. I always felt that if I can understand this person, be thoughtful and considerate of unspoken needs, why cannot he/she understand me too? Why do I have to put things in words for that person to grasp my feelings? Many a time, I've been told that I need to spell out things as others are not mind-readers. Whereas I've seldom needed things to be spelled out to me. This frustration and unfairness that I battled with could've been avoided had I been aware that what I had was a gift which others didn't have. They had to follow the tedious process of trial and error to understand me.

Everyone has such inherent gifts - some are obvious and others are less overt. Do you have any such gift?

24 February 2010

And so it continues...

After a really hectic 2nd week, the first installment in our kitchen renovation began last weekend, thus continuing the 'busy and happening' theme of this month. It involved extension of the kitchen platform and re-installation of the kitchen sink. Of course, that meant plumbing and re-tiling of some portion too. The kitchen was of course closed for the entire duration. And the mess... the less said about it the better! The entire house is covered in dust inspite of using dust sheets generously. It beats me how the dust can unerringly find hard-to-reach nooks and cranies in my kitchen which were hitherto unexplored by the human hands. Every surface, utensil, cabinet has a nice dust coating and has led to a cleaning and dusting frenzy since yesterday. The washing machine too is busy churning out laundry of all garments - be it dust sheets, feet wipes, curtains, napkins since yesterday.

Must say though that the effort was worth it. Firstly, 'cos the renovation experts did a thorough job. I didn't realize before that there is high level of skill required in laying a kitchen platform just so, in removing existing tiles and debris without causing structural damage and in fitting a tap and drain-pipe expertly. My kitchen is not only more spacious and well-lighted now, but the increased real-estate of the platform makes cooking so much more fun!

16 February 2010

The week that was...

Last week was easily the most happening week of the year so far. It started with a maid crisis - our maid was hospitalized and would be out for at least 5 days. This was really disturbing as we had guests coming over the weekend for a family celebration. So the sunday was spent in a flurry of cooking, cleaning, wiping, dusting and washing clothes. Managed to find a replacement maid after much running around who would at least take care of the cleaning part for some days. Tuesday was hubby's birthday. It was celebration time from 8th midnight till the next midnight. I was just starting to relax on Wednesday, when my sis-in-law had to be admitted to hospital for delivery. So wednesday evening and thursday were spent at the hospital. There was some anxiety and also my parents had not yet arrived from Baroda. There was a break on Thursday however, as my maid showed up. What a relief! And then Friday morning was spent first in collecting my parents at the station and then depositing them to the hospital alongwith lunch for those on hospital duty.

Friday afternoon was the most exciting day of my life! I became aunt to a healthy baby boy and what a suspenseful few minutes those were. One minute we were fretting over what was happening as we had all been shooed out of the room that had my SIL. And the next minute, we were presented with the baby :) I can never forget the expression on my brother's face (he is the new dad). He was numb with shock and relief. The first thing he said was "he has so much hair! ". After that, there were lot of tears, hugs, congratulations and phone calls. The rest of the day passed in a blur. All I remember was seeing the baby for the first time and how innocent and clueless it looked. Completely oblivious to all the tension it had caused and boldly taking in the new world with its button-like eyes.

There was no end to the exclamations of delight and awe - "Born on the day of Mahashivaratri!", "Only baby boy in the batch of 7 babies born today." "Oh, he is so tall for a newborn!" and so on... The euphoria carried on even the next day. Until the city was rocked, and shocked, by its first ever bomb blast. We heard of it within 10 minutes, as I, alongwith my in-laws, had gone to visit the baby and we were not allowed to enter as they were expecting a batch of ambulances to arrive any moment. Shock and fear was writ large on the faces of the hospital staff and security personnel. Sunday was celebration time as my MIL was to turn 75 the next day. It started from dinner on Saturday and continued till Sunday evening. Spent some quality family time with sis-in-law (hubby's sis this time), her daughter and hubby (who were visiting from Mumbai) and of course my MIL.

All in all, an extremely hectic and happening bitter-sweet week and definitely most memorable.

03 February 2010

How to sleep peacefully?

A boy and a girl were playing together. The boy had a collection of marbles. The girl had some sweets with her. The boy told the girl that he will give her all his marbles in exchange for her sweets. The girl agreed.

The boy kept the biggest and the most beautiful marble aside and gave the rest to the girl. The girl gave him all her sweets as she had promised. That night, the girl slept peacefully. But the boy couldn't sleep as he kept wondering if the girl had hidden some sweets from him the way he had hidden his best marble.

Moral of the story: If you don't give your hundred percent in a relationship, you'll always keep doubting if the other person has given his/her hundred percent.. This is applicable for any relationship like love, Friends or even employer-employee relationship etc.,

Give your hundred percent to everything you do and sleep peacefully

02 February 2010

Friendship

"As is often the case as people grow older, the tight knit cluster of friends you had as a younger person might have lost its the closeness over time and disseminated. A revitalization of this bond, however, is quite possibly just over the horizon for you, as several unforeseen social calls lead to a renewed harmony between old companions."

This is my horoscope for the week. And so true it is!

Met some of my ex-colleagues at a wedding reception on Sunday. It felt good to see each other after a long time. Some of us have left my old organization while some are still loyal to it. Being spread out over all parts of the city, it was unlikely that such a reunion might have happened if two of my ex-colleagues had not fallen in love with each other and decided to make it official. Plus everyone brought their families so we got to meet the spouses and kiddos that we had only oohed and aahed over photo albums so far.

Also met another ex-colleague and good friend over breakfast today. She is recently married and stays with her in-laws, awaiting her visa to join her hubby overseas. Felt good to meet with her and know about her experiences as a newly married bride :) I believe she also needed to air her fears regarding moving to a new country leaving all familiar things behind.

They say that some of the best friends are made when one is young. That's true. And then, the rest of the life is spent in nurturing those friendships. The ones who get good nurturing survive the difficult middle years and serve us well post retirement. I am enjoying the nurturing part currently, which is not to say that I'm not young anymore :)