Posted in True Story, Inspirational

Twenty One Years and Nine Months ago….

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Twenty One Years and Nine Months Ago (there about) a young couple had this crazy idea that they should now think about a second child.  They were very happy with their first effort and couldn’t see a reason not to go ahead with their idea.

From the get go this second child made sure he announced his coming to the world and there was red carpet waiting for him.  So the star was born just a few weeks before he was really due.  Mum was relieved as she had enough of his kicking in the stomach and decided he was better out than in, however the dad would have preferred a night of uninterrupted Cricket. As it was time was Arjuna Ranatunga to get out it was time for Arjuna Ganesan to come out.

You would think with such an Omen this young Arjuna would have turned out to be a great Cricketer.  Well he is left handed and that’s where the similarities and talent ends.

Well, he doesn’t need to be the next Arjuna Ranatunga or anyone else for that matter.  From the get go he showed us that he was an individual with his own identity that is to be admired and loved.

I am not entirely sure when he started to talk.  It could have been even the same day he was born telling the doctor what to do.  He started to talk pretty early and hasn’t given up on it as yet.  He has a lot to say about a lot of things.  Although an Asthmatic, no issues with voice projection either. Driving the boys to school I recollect many a times Hari (my eldest) declaring that it was “quiet time now”, just to get some breathing space to think on our own.  This ability to talk did give him some opportunity to venture into Public Speaking and land a few MC gigs.  When your child takes the stage to address a large audience of adults at the age of nine barely reaching the microphone, it does give the mother and father a moment of Goosebumps.

He loved the stage to speak, to act and to dance.  As he grew he became more aware of the society and its issues.  He was in year 7, and he returns home with his lunch box untouched.  He explains to me that he didn’t get time to eat, as he had to break up two year 4 kids fighting in the school grounds.  Him and his friend had to tell these kids to break up and explained to them that things would get worse if the teachers got involved.  As he was having this negotiation he saw a small kid from Kindergarten in the middle of the car park.  So he had to run to get this kid out of the way and take him into the School Office.  And when all this finished it was time to head back to his classroom.

There was a kid in Arj’s class (Primary School year 6 or thereabouts) who was considered to be a bully.  But this kid was really a great Cricketer.  One day Arj asked me during the match to call out this kid and cheer him on. To yell out “Great shot Tony” (I made up that name Tony).  Arj explained to me that this kid had no mum and the father was struggling to bring up his kids. And the father rarely attends any of the matches or training.  And even when he did, he would yell at them and wasn’t really being a loving dad.  So Arj explained to me and said maybe the reason he bullies others is because there is no one to say he is great or make him feel special.

So I followed Arj’s request and during the game I yelled “Tony that was a great shot”.  The kid was really startled.  When he came back to the club house, he came up to me and said “Thank you Mrs. Ganesan” and the following weeks, after each match or while the game was going on and he was waiting for his turn, he would start a conversation with me.  He mentioned that he would one day like to play for the state. Any time he saw me in school, even outside of Cricket he would stop and great me “How are you Mrs. Ganesan?” Years later I met him at the shopping centre all grown up and unrecognisable, but he recognised me and greeted me the same “Hallo Mrs. Ganesan, how are you?”  I am not saying that kid turned into a new leaf just because of that one action but I am pretty sure he appreciated that small gesture.  It meant nothing to me but it meant so much to that kid.  But what astounds me most is that Arj at such a young age realised this.

Even at that young age he was fascinated with politics. For one of his school projects he interviewed a few known Politicians.  It was not easy for a Primary school kid to get these interviews.  So he got many knock backs and but eventually he managed to interview Nick Minchin, Christopher Pyne and John Hill.  To their credit they didn’t treat him like a kid; they answered his questions like they would for Leigh Sales.  Also I think it taught Arj that if you want to pursue something, you have to overcome knockbacks.

Years later, now studying Journalism and International relations seems very fitting for his personality and character.

Years ago, Twenty Nine Years and Nine months ago to be exact we had no idea that this crazy idea we had of having another child was going to be this exciting.

Thank you my boy for bringing so much happiness and joy.  For all the laughs, for all the crazy things you drag us doing and for the moments you make us so proud.  Those moments almost make me forget how your bedroom looks, all the times I have rushed to the hospital with lego pieces up the nose or crayon in the ear canal or with a broken limb.  Just remember I said almost, so please clean up your room and stop hurting yourself.

Happy 21st My boy.

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Posted in True Story, Inspirational

It was an year ago…

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It was an year ago…

The words ring in my ears.  It was my father in law’s one year death anniversary a couple of days ago.  Jan (my sister in law and bestie) calls me after her temple visit for her father.  Fighting her emotions she utters the words “It was just an year ago that we went on that trip and then all hell broke lose”

It was just an year ago, that Jan and I decided to celebrate the fact that we have made it to Fifty.  Life served each of us a fair proportion of trials and tribulations. But thankful we are still here and still in tact.

Jan living in Canada and me in Australia, our friendship is held together tightly with ‘skype’ and “whatsapp’.  We decided we needed a good R&R and decided a holiday together somewhere.

So it was an year ago that she and I frolicked the streets of Goa.  We would yap till the early hours of the morning.  Partly because each of us was fighting jet lag from different time zones.  So when I was sleepy Jan wouldn’t let me sleep and vise versa.  We giggled, we laughed and we even cried.

I remember a similar scenario when we were nineteen.  We hadn’t gone on any holiday, I had just moved to Colombo with my mum for studies and Jan was about to migrate to Canada, my dad had fallen ill and was hospitalised.  Jan stayed the nights with me for support.  Jan and I shared a room.  This was about the same time I was falling for her brother as well.  Well, let me rephrase that, he was falling for me.  She was going out with my cousin too.  So we had many things to giggle and laugh about.  Then came my fathers demise.  And now we had things to cry about.

Each year we accumulate memories of all kinds.  Some happy, some not so. But they are memories nonetheless.

I like to think that an year ago was all about 50th birthday parties and reunions. But unfortunately, last year did come crashing down at the end.  Jan lost her dad (my father in law) just after our Goan trip.  He was a larger than life character and his death came unexpectedly.  Yes, we can console ourselves to say he did not suffer and he went peacefully.  However, I always wonder if I had done everything I can to let him know that we loved him very much – in spite of all the arguments and disagreements, to let him know that I admired him more than he will ever know.

I am grateful for the memories he gave us/me.  Some funny, some sad and some utterly mad.  It was a great theatre.  He was truly an amazing man.  His achievements surpasses the stains of his childhood. But he is not one to bury his past to parade his success.  He lived a humble and frugal life.  Sometimes too humble and too frugal.  But anything more made him unhappy and we had to let him live his life the way he wanted.  Rest in Peace mama, you have earned it.

I lost two of my favourite aunties.  I call them aunties but neither of them related to me by blood.  I loved them dearly and each one had an irreplaceable impact on my life.  Again the two deaths came from no where.  It was as if God had a quota to get through before Christmas.  Bang, Bang, Bang three in a row within a week.

I recall Aunty Ponmani. I can’t help but break out a smile and a chuckle.  She was a mischievous, cheeky old woman. I hear the word ‘Faminist’ thrown around loosely these days.  This woman was a pioneer. She didn’t waste time putting a label to her actions.  She just went ahead and did them. She was a tough women who took no prisoners.  But for all that tough exterior she was rather mushy on the inside.  I loved her cuddles, I miss her cuddles.  Truly grateful to the man up there for letting me cross paths with this amazing lady.  Rest in Peace Aunty Ponmani Ps.  Can you please allow others over there to rest in peace as well Aunty? I can picture her smiling at me and saying “why should I’ with a twinkle in her eye.

Then came Aunty Mahasen.  I have no idea why she loved me so much, but she did.  She was a triple threat.  Grace, elegance and class all donned into one.  Again a mere chance that made us cross paths, but a path, with rainbows and butterflies.  And many pot plants.  Missing your gorgeous smile aunty, rest in peace.

It didn’t stop there. Arj my youngest learnt a hard lesson in life.  A cruel lesson.  Life is short, especially for his nineteen year old mate Jack.  Arj reluctantly bid good bye to his mate Jack just before Xmas as well.  He was found dead in the shower.  No, not drugs.  Not sure what, coroners baffled too.  It was only an year before that they bid good bye at school and Jack moved to Melbourne and Arj left for Japan. They kept in touch on facebook and promised to catch up that December.  Time and tide waits for none and in this case not even for a nineteen year old with so much promise.  Memories – I am sure Arj would have many, although I wonder if the last one has sealed off the older ones. Easy for me to preach – to say “don’t linger on the sadness, don’t let his passing dictate your memory of your friendship”.  Memories are too raw, too soon I guess.  I don’t know Jack’s mum. All I know is, she is weeping now.

Without memories, without musings we are mere robots.  Each year just like dust we gather more memories.  Some of them turn out to be Gold dust.  We hope all of them to be gold dust, but unfortunately sometimes its just black soot.  We don’t dictate what is dealt next.  But we can at least influence it.  That’s what I think anyway.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Daily post, True Story, Inspirational

Just a mere Coincidence !?!…(part 2)

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“I remember my cousin telling me clearly, we’ll call you on the 19th and we can talk more.  How was I to know that he wasn’t going to keep that promise…”(Cont.. from part, I suggest that you read part 1 before you proceed.)

I am back at work after all the New Year celebrations.  It was the 7th of January, our office was relocating premises.  I was busy coding all the computers and its wires and extensions.  I was under the desk when the phone rang.  I just let it ring, as I wanted to get this done.  Sherrie who was at the reception popped in at the door and said “Uma why aren’t picking up the phone? it’s your mum on the line” Mum never rings me at work.  Immediately my thought goes to Arj my four year old, he was not the healthiest of kids.  I grabbed the the phone, mum started to slowly speak.  She said “Uma it’s not good news…” and she paused.  My mind starts racing and my hearts joins in too.  Mum continues “In Canada..Rama…”, I thought it was my uncle, she finishes the sentence.  My dear cousin had met with an accident and they believe he had passed away.

My racing heart came to a complete stop.  So did my mind.  It went blank.  Other than that one voice that just kept interjecting “No way, Not true”.  Brian my boss realised that something was wrong.  So did the others.  They made a cup of coffee and sat and talked me, they wanted to me to calm down before I started driving.

I start driving, I start planning my thoughts, I will go home and give a call to my sister in law to confirm the news.  This news came from other people not directly from the family.  They were still at the hospital as per the sources.  I was convinced he has somehow pulled through.  There was no way he could be gone.  No Way.  No Fricking way.  He is only forty years old, his wife/my buddy is only thrity five.  He has two small kids.  No Way, No He Can’t Go.  I just spoke to him to seven days ago.  No Way, Not True”. My mind kept chanting those words.

I am in one of the back streets.  I hear a big thud, I look through the rear view mirror.  A big Gum Tree branch just falls millimeters behind my car.  One millisecond earlier I would have been under that gum tree.  Same, same slightly different.  Force of the twins now attacking the kids?? Just a mere coincidence??  Maybe.

Between my cousin and me, I am the noisy one.  He was the calm, passive and quiet one.  He broke all those rules when he went.  He sent shook waves through the entire nation, the family and extended family. No one could fathom what had just happened.  But apparently that is life.

It just took one momentary lapse of concentration for that woman to drive through a red light and take out my cousin who was taking a left turn, to cause such carnage and misery. Some of us felt angry, some of us felt some kind of empathy but overwhelmingly all of us felt lost. I felt robbed.  I didn’t have a sibling of my own and even the one that I treated as my own brother was now taken.  I had to shun my emotions to soldier on Jan’s (my sister-in-law).  I hope God wasn’t listening to me then, if he was he was he would have rather shocked at the language I was using at him.  My personal observation here is that he screwed up well and truly on this case.

Time passed, his wife (my sister in law and friend) had accepted the sentence that ‘The Life’ gave her and of the sentence the court gave the other woman, the best way she can.  His kids grew with the remnants of the memories of their dad, and his parents struggled on, watching their grand kids to get a glimpse of their late son.  We blamed FATE for their destiny and moved on.

I had turned Forty the previous year in June.  So I was forty and six months on the 7th of January 2006.  I was on my way to my mum’s house with some essentials, bread, milk etc.  She was returning from Sydney that night and I wanted to put these things in her house before her arrival.  I was at the intersection waiting to turn right ( For those from the Americas, this would be like taking a Left turn for you), the lights change to green.  After a quick flick of the head to the right I start to move.  I hear someone’s horn, not sure which direction it came from. But there was a car coming at a speed from the right.  It all took just a split second.  I saw the other car driver right front of me.  I was sure I was gone that day, that very minute.  I felt jolt at the front, but the car drove off and I was still alive.

I was frozen for a few seconds.  I am not sure how I managed to brake in time, how/why the car behind me didn’t hit me.  I pulled into a side road to inspect the damage to the front of the car.  My number plate was screwed up.  That’s it nothing else.  Not another scratch.  But can you imagine how close the other car was if it had touched my number plate.

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Both cousin and I meeting with a similar accident on the 7th Jan and we were both at the exact age seems a little bit more than a coincidence to me.  Then again I don’t know if I am reading too much into it, to feel the connection between him and me.

I survived he didn’t, my uncle survived my dad didn’t.  Same, Same but different seems to be the theme in our lives.  It all has to be a mere coincidence.

The Universe is a one big question mark.  Do we have all the answers?  I guess in the scientific world most things can be rationalized as a mere coincidence and in the world of Mystic and spirituality it is Fate or a Miracle.  

 

Daily Prompt: Coincidence

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/coincidence/

 

 

Posted in True Story, Inspirational

Charlottesville

I read somewhere “It’s easy to hate than to change” I will go further and say “it’s easy to hate than to understand”, “it’s easy to hate if you are ignorant” and it seems that “its easy to hate than to love”. I say this with a heavy. Ever the optimist is having her doubts at present. I can only hope for a better tomorrow. That hope feels pretty bleak at present.

Coalition of the Brave

Sometimes it’s difficult to comment properly on a situation as it unfolds. Sometimes, it’s really really easy. What’s going on in Charlottesville, USA, is very easy to properly comment on. It’s about racists wanting to enable more racism, under the guise that they’re the poor, oppressed class, even though none of them have actually known true oppression.

This all started (or at least the excuse that will be given is) because of plans to remove a statue of US Civil War General Robert E. Lee, who fought for the pro-slavery Confederacy during the conflict. Plans to remove a pro-slavery symbol have been met by marchers – who appear to consist of almost entirely white men – protesting against… well, I’m not sure they even know. How exactly are they being victimised or oppressed? Will one of them strike up the courage to explain this to me?

Do they know…

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Posted in True Story, Inspirational

Suicide Season

I think this is a good kick in the back side to seriously think about publish my first book

The Renegade Press

‘Ignoring your passion is slow suicide. Never ignore what your heart pumps for.’

  • Kevin Claiborne

Let’s play a game of Russian Roulette.

You and I are seated at a table in a smoke filled room; there’s an old six shooter positioned perfectly between us with a single round floating in one of its chambers. The heavy aromas of mildew and fear cling to your skin causing you to perspire. We’re alone. There’s no one here to save us; the only entrance to the cell is destined to remain locked until only one of us remains. You’re scared. So am I. Our lives have been reduced to this moment where we’ll play a game of chance to see who survives. Nothing else matters right now. It’s just you and I.

There’s a coin beside the gun. We’ll flip to see who shoots first. I pick it up and use my thumb…

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Posted in True Story, Inspirational

The soul of a dog

Written by Andrea Stepheson

Harvesting Hecate

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There is an old episode of the Twilight Zone, in which an elderly man and his dog die and make their way to the afterlife.  They approach what they believe to be heaven, only to be told that the dog isn’t allowed to enter.  The old man decides that it can’t be much of a heaven if his dog isn’t welcome, so he walks on by.  Of course, it soon becomes clear that this wasn’t heaven after all, but hell, and the devil was trying to trick him.  His loyalty to his dog saved him.  I must have watched a lot of Twilight Zones when I was young, but this one has stuck with me.

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Some people believe that animals don’t have souls.  That everything they do, they do purely out of instinct or because it serves some purpose for survival.  They believe that humans are the only species with a rich interior life…

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