Tuesday, December 26, 2017

The Boat-Wreck- Review

After a boat wreck overturns his life, Rameshchandra Chowdhury mistakes young Kamala for his newly wedded bride. They move away from Calcutta to start a domestic life together, even as Ramesh is unable to forget Hemnalini, whom he was always in love with, but could not marry. Meanwhile, Hemnalini must steel her heart, whilst her hypochondriac father and hot-headed brother seek grooms for her. When Nalinaksha, a serene and influential doctor, enters the scene, fate decides to rock the boats again. 
Initially serialized in Bangadarshan magazine between 1903 and 1904, and then published as a novel in 1906, Noukadoobi was Tagore's exercise in psychoanalytical probing of an ensemble cast of characters, to reveal not just their individual pains and passions, but also the collective consciousness of the society of the period. Narrated in warm tones that reveal the tenderness of everyday life, and translated gracefully by Arunava Sinha, here is a story about love and sacrifice, faith and resilience that is timeless.

About The Author
Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) is India's greatest littérateur. The only Indian to have won the Nobel Prize for Literature, he wrote prodigiously and brilliantly across forms, including novels, short stories, plays, poetry, song lyrics, essays, travelogues, and even question papers. His works span an astonishing range of subjects, including humanism, love, family and society, politics, sociology, philosophy, psychology, spirituality, and religion. Tagore wrote primarily in Bangla, and his works have been translated into almost every major world language. 
Arunava Sinha translates classic, modern and contemporary Bengali fiction and non-fiction into English. More than thirty-five of his translations have been published so far. Twice the winner of the Crossword translation award, for Sankar's Chowringhee (2007) and Anita Agnihotri's Seventeen (2011), he has also been shortlisted for The Independent Foreign Fiction prize (2009) for his translation of Chowringhee. Besides India, his translations have been published in the U.K. and the U.S. in English, and in several European and Asian countries through further translation. He was born and grew up in Kolkata, and lives and writes in New Delhi.

“Music is nothing but a matter of practice. Once a sense of melody has been instilled, everything becomes easier.”

Arunava’s adaption of Rabindranath Tagore’s classic ‘Noukadubi’ flows true to the above spoken words by Annada Babu, like a soft melodious tune. Renamed ‘The Boat-Wreck’, Arunava Sinha sticks true to the essence of Tagore’s sensibility, capturing the Bengal of early twentieth century, an essence wrapped neatly in time.

Considering its basic premise, it would be safe to categorize ‘The Boat-Wreck’ as a love story. However, the pages narrate tales that are unconventional. There are elements of mutual affection, trust, romance and also a tinge of betrayal, embossed in the backdrop of Tagore’s romanticism. ‘The Boat-Wreck’ is a story told in time, flowing with time, and finally emerging with its own realization against time. It is an episode of self-discovery amidst the tumultuous period of losing and finding oneself.

There are four basic characters in the novel with distinct identities of their own. Hemnalini is pretty, smart and confident. Like most of Tagore heroines, she comes with an innate sense of power that draws the readers towards her. She is loved by people around her, specially her father Annada Babu who trusts her blindly. Hemnalini has a soft corner for Ramesh, but it is very rare that she confesses this feeling openly.

Kamala is the second female protagonist of the novel. Unlike Hemnalini, she is not well educated. She is simple and has a childlike innocence that makes her the cynosure of the story. In fact, most of the narrative revolves around Kamala, her relations and her inner turmoils. Though she isn’t acquainted with the finer nuances of ways of the world, she has her own sense of practicality and wisdom that guides her through and helps her stay afloat in roaring tides.

Ramesh and Hemnalini share a mutual affection towards each other. They are all set to marry, when a cruel storm overturns their plan. Ramesh is kind, sensitive and affectionate. However, he can be blamed for indecisiveness and not staying firm to his resolutions. His sense of duty and responsibility urges him to accept Kamala as his wife, but his non-clarity of ideas get Kamala admitted to a school, so that she wouldn’t be near him. Both Hemnalini and Kamala are loyal to Ramesh till a certain point, but the cloud of confusion and self-doubt in Ramesh’s mind creats a maze for all, where the protagonists find themselves tangled.

We are introduced to Nalinaksha towards the latter half of the story. Gripped by a grief of his own, he has devoted his life to the services of people in Kashi. He is responsible, and is not afraid to speak his mind, even when his opinion differs from his mother whom he respects a lot. He balances his heart and mind, and takes his decisions only after proper considerations.

‘The Boat-Wreck’ reflects the chaos in the consciousness of the protagonists created by the turmoil of the tides. It lays bare open situations that no sane man would ever like to encounter. That is how life is, and the novel tries to depict one. However, coincidences and chance meetings often crop up in the story, which dilutes the mystery and creates a sense of predictability. That, though, doesn’t take anything away from the beauty of the plot, which grows on and on the readers, taking us to a mesmerizing ride, sometimes subtle and other times turbulent.

Title: The Boat-Wreck
Author: Rabindranath Tagore (Translated by Arunava Sinha)
Publisher: HarperPerennial
Publication Year: 2017
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
Genre: Fiction, Classics, Love
No. of Pages: 308
Price: Rs 299
My Rating: 3/5

Sunday, December 17, 2017

There Was This Moment

there was this moment
that stood by the night
I gazed at the stars
the signs were all right

she held up her glass
the wine shining bright
Cheers! the drinks clinked
my heart flying light

some well thought of words
randomly escaped my lips
I knew she wouldn't know
what this moment means

the breeze played warm music
and I held out my hands
Would you like a dance
She nodded in advance

and there was this moment
when the world turned mute
I could feel her breath
our lips synced to the flute

I prayed for this night
to run well past dawn
her cold fingers brushed
preparing for swan-song

then the stars hid
in the blanket of the sun
our time was up
in red rays of horizon

she ran towards the edge
and flew off the roof
I could see her no more
those memories aloof

a decade and a half
she visited each year
a spirit, or a fairy
her identity unclear

but I did love this moment
though fleeting in nature
and I await another year
for our moment's next chapter

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Friday, November 17, 2017

Yeti-The Himalayan Kitchen - Review

A couple of weeks back, we visited Hauz Khas village. After strolling around the Deer Park, my family and I decided to have our lunch. As we walked through the lines of restaurants and pubs, our attention zeroed upon 'Yeti-The Himalayan'. We decided to give it a try because, one, we were looking for a good family restaurant at that moment and not a sort of bar/pub, and two, the name appealed to me, as if inviting me to the serenity of the Himalayas.

There were three of us, and what disappointed me a bit after entering the restaurant was that no tables were available (it was a Sunday). Half marks deducted. We waited for 15 minutes before a table was finally free, and we took our seat. In the mean time, we did admire the beautiful ambiance that was created inside the restaurant, There were Buddhist prayer rolls, flags, pictures and other decorations which would transport guests to the aura of the mountains.

The menu is spread over various cuisines, Himalayan, Nepalese and Bhutanese to name a few. We opted for Chicken Chow Chow, Chicken Fried Rice and Chicken Manchurian. The food was served after 10 minutes, and we just couldn't have enough. They were YUMMY! All three items were top notch, with the right mix of spices, and we ate to our hearts content. Also, the service was good, with the waiter and the other staffs making sure the expectation are met.

I would surely visit this place again.

Restaurant:   Yeti-The Himalayan Kitchen
Address:       30, 1st Floor, Hauz Khas Village, New Delhi
Open:           12 Noon - 11:30 PM
Cuisines:      Tibetan, Nepalese
Contact:       +91 11 33106044
My Rating:   4/5

Yeti - The Himalayan Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Thursday, November 16, 2017

The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time - Review

This is Christopher's murder mystery story. There are no lies in this story because Christopher can't tell lies. Christopher does not like strangers or the colours yellow or brown or being touched. On the other hand, he knows all the countries in the world and their capital cities and every prime number up to 7507. When Christopher decides to find out who killed the neighbour's dog, his mystery story becomes more complicated than he could ever have predicted.

About the Author
Mark Haddon was born in 1962 in Northampton. He has done a variety of different jobs including working with disabled people, drawing illustrations and comic strips, writing and working as a painter. Haddon has written a whole range of different things including books for children and adults, poetry, TV screenplays and a play for the theatre. Mark Haddon wrote and illustrated his first picture book at the age of twenty-five. Since then he has written many picture books including the 'Agent Z' series and the 'Baby Dinosaur' series. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time was published in 2003 and it was the first book ever to be published simultaneously in two editions – one for adults and one for children. The book was instantly a huge success and has won a whole host of prizes. Mark has won two BAFTAs for his work in writing TV screenplays for children and adults. He's also published two more books for adults.

There is a closely guarded world among all of us, rooted deep within. We look at what’s happening around us, and judge, and finally act. Our decisions are sometimes rash, other times controlled, and often plain intuitive; ‘cause we are humans, with our own set of thought processes, our own idea of good and bad, influenced by our upbringing, our society and the world.

And then there was Christopher, a teenage boy who was good with numbers, computing tables in his mind whenever he needed to be calm. Christopher counted cars to make his day good or bad. ‘Four red cars’ in a row meant Good Day for him, ‘three red cars’ denoted Quite Good Day, ‘five red cars’ implied Super Good Day, and ‘four yellow cars’ signified a Black Day. Christopher lived with his father, and his rat, and loved mystery novels. Christopher belonged to the society, but he had devised his own set of rules that he strictly followed.

Mark Haddon touches the sensitive topic of autism in his novel ‘The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time’. His protagonist Christopher is autistic, and thus his thought processes are different. Christopher is also the narrator of the book, which makes the idea of the novel all the more compelling. There had been a ‘murder’. A neighbour’s dog was killed, and Christopher took it upon himself to solve the mystery. This is what the cover of the book indicates too, but what makes it different than a normal suspense novel is the way the whole plot has been conceptualized and treated. Christopher’s fascination with Mathematics shows that he is a genius in his own way. The constant encouragement and advice from Siobhan, and the beautiful relationship they shared bring a smile on our face. Christopher wrote down his adventures (in the form of this book), and we couldn’t but admire the warm innocence and simplicity that oozes out of his words.

What genre does this novel belong to? Thriller? Suspense? Dark Humour? To be honest, this book can’t be tied to one particular genre, as it is a reflection of Christopher’s day to day life, and the tasks he undertook. We as readers fall in love with Christopher, his brilliance and shortcomings, his determination, and also the fear, and his willingness to always speak the truth. Christopher didn't like people touching him, and he hit a policeman in the process. Christopher makes us giggle, without him realizing, and that’s the best part about him.

However, this book opens a question wide to me? Did I really like it? And strangely enough, I didn’t find a conclusive answer. Did I like Christopher? Yes. Did I like the narration? Yes. Did I like the concept? Yes. Did I like the first half? Yes.

But did I like the way the story progressed? No (it dragged in second half). Did I like the mystery? No (I didn’t find the investigation exciting). Would I re-read this book? No (it was good for a one time read).

Thus, my personal opinion is that Mark Haddon has brought up an interesting idea and scripted this book, but it’s not devoid of its loopholes. I would have liked the second half being trimmed a bit. I admire the honesty in the narration, but expected more grip in the suspense element.

I would suggest giving this book a try. This is not the regular stuff, and to be fair, I haven’t read anything like this before. 

Title: The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time
Authors: Mark Haddon
Publisher: Vintage Books
Publication Year: 2003
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
Genre: Fiction, Classics, Mystery
No. of Pages: 304
Price: Rs 299
My Rating: 3/5

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Vodafone #CelebratingSuper In Delhi NCR

Delhi has always been a story – historical, mythological, fantasy. There are tales revolving around the Indian Capital right from the time of Mahabharata. We have kings and queens, princes and princesses and brave warriors. We have Mughals, their conquests, the rise and fall, and the subsequent dynasties, and across the time line, we navigate through the British empire, their rule, and the Independence struggle, the freedom fighters, valour, and sacrifices. Delhi, to me, thus has always been a book, a conglomeration of snippets and stories, which enrich and inspire us.

Thus, when I decided to shift to Delhi a few years ago, my joy knew no bound. This was an avenue I had looked forward to, and was excited to explore. The historical sites, monuments, and the innumerable sightseeing venues lured me. And here I was, right in the heart of the Capital.

However, over the years, there have been changes. Change is inevitable, and with time, both good and bad changes have surrounded the city. It’s our tendency to generally complain of the bad changes, and we have fretted over the increasing pollution level in the city, the congestion, and the likes. The most alarming of these has been the rise in pollution, and several initiatives have been launched by Delhi Government over the years to bring a check to it. Some were accepted, some debated, and some discarded. However, the aim is to make Delhi a cleaner, better place to live.

Vodafone, a renowned brand in the Telecom industry, has come up with its own sets of cards to transform Delhi into a smart city and a better city. With multiple projects running simultaneously all over Delhi NCR, we can aptly term the initiative as #CelebratingSuper.

One of the most innovative campaigns by Vodafone was launched during Diwali this year. With the Supreme Court announcing a ban on firecrackers in Delhi NCR during the festive season, Vodafone came up with a healthier and environment friendly alternative. During the four days of festivity (from 16th October to 19th October), Super Crackers were being sold at 52 Vodafone stores across the Capital. The Super Crackers are eco-friendly water soluble papers in shape of crackers, containing soya or tulsi seeds. Thus, there won’t be any harm to the environment. In contrast, it would rather help in decreasing the pollution level of the city. When one uses these Super Crackers, the seeds of soya and tulsi will get deposited in soil, giving rise to more trees.

For those away from family and friends during the auspicious festival of Diwali, Vodafone has brought forth E-Phuljhari. The E-Phuljhari is a one of its kind personalized GIF greeting which can be designed and sent to the loved ones via social media. One has to visit the Vodafone store and design the E-Phuljhari as per his own customizations. The joy of Diwali can thus be shared even if you are far away from your own folks.

The current generation loves to dream big. They have a passion to excel and the desire to achieve. They have goals which they have set, and aspire to achieve them step by step. Several start-ups have come up in the last few years, paving way to innumerable employment opportunities. Vodafone, too, is playing a perfect role in helping these start-ups grow. It has launched a ‘Ready Startup Kit’, which creates solutions and provides help to start-ups, so that they can grow and establish themselves.

Who doesn’t want to breathe fresh air? Unfortunately, we are used to inhaling the harmful pollutants while waiting for public transport on roads. Thanks to Vodafone, this is going to change.  Vodafone has constructed an Air Purifying Bus Shelter in Safdarjung’s bus stand, one of Delhi’s busiest locations. People can now wait for their buses and inhale pure air. Vodafone is planning similar bus shelters in other parts of Delhi NCR.
Not just Diwali, Vodafone had also taken care that people enjoy Durga Puja by visiting pandals with ease and comfort. The Vodafone team had ensured wheel chair and support for differently abled people and senior citizens so that they do not face any hassles in pandals. The team distributed free water bottles to visitors and pandal hoppers in some of the prime locations in Delhi like C. R. Park, Sector 22 Dwarka and Indirapuram.

We want to stay connected all the time. Our smart phones are nothing without internet connection. Sometimes, we need to be connected on the go. For such purposes, Vodafone has setup free wifi hotspots in many parts of Delhi NCR. Now, even if you do not have mobile data, you can still connect to these wifi hotspots whenever you are outside and in need of internet connectivity.

Vodafone has been putting immense effort in making Delhi a beautiful place to live in. The #CelebratingSuper motto has been staying true to its name. However, that brings me to a question. Can’t we, as citizens of Delhi, also imbibe the culture of #CelebratingSuper within ourselves? Can we, as responsible residents of the state, and country, ensure proper hygiene around us? Delhi, or any other state, can become Super by our combined efforts. Let us pledge for the same, so that Delhi can shine gloriously and be the beauty that it deserves to be.

 Visit https://www.vodafone.in/home-delhi for more details.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - The Finale

(Image Source: https://viralcola.com/)

Click To Read Episode Nine

I can not fathom how much I ran. Neither do I remember rushing by the evening tide, panting for breath, nor can I recollect the moment I fell asleep from weariness. However, when I opened my eyes, something felt new. Different. Good. In fact, I felt happier, the reason oblivious to me, but a sudden sense of excitement had overpowered me. My gait seemed to have suddenly awaken from a long bout of slumber, and all the exuberance of the world seeped into me.

And then, out of nowhere, the skies turned black, the land turned muddy, and I found myself drowning in utter confusion. My paws struck a solid ground, but before I could hold on to it, I realized my nose was melting, my eyes squinting, and my face rapidly turning into a cat. I shrieked.

I woke up a second time. Phew, what a nightmare! I shook my head, itched my tail, and looked around. The sun was sinking behind the mountains, revealing an aura of divine colors. Wait! Mountains? How did mountains come into this city? I have never seen mountains here before.

And then, from the horizon, I could see a faint trail, a line of dust sliding nearer and nearer. I stood rooted at the spot, ready to run in case of any danger. As the vision cleared out, I noted that the formation was none other than a large conglomeration of chihuahuas, walking in groups, the total number way beyond a few hundreds, or perhaps even thousands.

The leader of the group stopped before me, and greeted, "Woof! Welcome to the land of chihuahuas."

I was astounded. Where was I? "I have never heard of such a land before," I expressed my dilemma.

The leader smiled, and said, "That's because you never sought for this land earlier. You have always been engaged with your mistress, her house, her demands, not realizing that you too have a life of your own. You have enveloped your dreams all this long, the time has now come to open the letters. This is your life. You are free. Your will is your desire, and your ambitions define the path you take. Just like the path towards your left. I hope you will love it."

I looked towards my left, and was met with both shock and surprise. There, right in front of my eyes, was a large patch of watermelons. Ripe, and juicy, and green. Watermelons of all sizes, varieties and types.

I slurped.

"Go on," the leader laughed, "this is your world. Live your life to the fullest, and yes, welcome to our group. From now on, we will all share our smiles and tears, sadness and happiness, success and defeat. We are the inhabitants of this land, the land of chihuahuas."

I leaped towards the watermelons, not knowing from where to start. I was on cloud nine. I wished this wasn't a dream that would get broken in a couple of hours. Or perhaps it was.

But until then, I would relish this part of my life. For now this was my reality - me and my watermelon diaries.

Woof! Woof!

The End !!! 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Nine

(Image Source: https://animalso.com)

Click To Read Episode Eight

The knock was loud, and the third one broke the door.

Three policemen barged into the house, revolvers held firmly. They looked right, then left, and then again right, and walked briskly towards the rooms. I, behind the shadowy confines of the living room sofa, recognized two of them.

"Ma'am, stand up!"I heard a booming voice coming from the kitchen. Probably, that's where my mistress was hiding, but her cover had been ruined. There were a few rapid whispers, probably conversations over a mobile phone, and in a couple of minutes, two lady officers made their way inside.

"Please, I am innocent. I didn't rob the bank," I heard my mistress pleading.

"Ma'am, we never said we are here for you. We are looking for a dog, a young chihuahua. However, you made it clearer, instead. What makes you think we suspect you of robbing the bank?"

There was an uncomfortable silence, and then, my mistress's wail zoomed into the air.

"Please, forgive me. I was helpless.I made the mistake. But I had no other option," she cried.

"And may I know why there was no other option?" an officer asked, mimicking her.

"I...I didn't want my chihuahua to get the money."

Her words felt like a bolt of lightening. I have served her for so long, been her companion since months, and yet, this is how she behaved? She used to say she loved me. Then, why all of a sudden she didn't want me to have the money?

And how did she know I was planning to rob the bank?

A lady police officer echoed my thought, and asked her the same question.

"I actually saw him roaming round the bank since the last few days. He was very observant, looking at every nook and corner, the windows and doors. I suspected that since I didn't pay him to buy the watermelons, he might take this route. And look, wasn't I right? If he had the money, he would become indisciplined, and no longer obey my orders." she tried to reason.

"Sir! Sir! We found the money. It was hidden under the mattress." I heard a voice filled with excitement hurrying across the bedroom.

"Ma'am! You are under arrest. You broke the law, robbing a public bank, looting the money deposited by citizens of this country, causing inconvenience to the society. Plus, you didn't let your pet have his watermelons, which made the innocent creature plan of such an extreme step. You have to come with us to the police station."

Tears welled in my eyes. My heart broke a hundred pieces, each of them cracking again in a thousand ways. She was my family. This was once my home. Now, no more. I was alone, all over again.

Through my mist stained eyes, I ran out of the door, as fast as I could, to escape from myself, and from this bitter truth.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Sapling

the sapling could grow no more
however hard I tried
the stems broken, the roots uprooted
I feared it might have died

I bent down, unearthing the core
the soil swept out of pot
then I planted the sapling back
hoping the leaves no longer rot

watering it day after day
nourishing under the sun
the sapling was all I had
my weary soul's companion

I spoke with it, at length
and hours would pass so soon
now I get no answers back
the green have started to swoon

who could damage a being so quiet
whose tears too have no room
the sapling stooped towards the dust
losing amidst the blue of moon

the sapling could grow no more
however hard I tried
wrinkled, broken, and deeply withered
it gave up before it cried

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Sunday, September 03, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Eight

By the time it was noon, I returned home, only to be greeted by my mistress's sharp words.

"Where were you all of yesterday? I had to buy four mangoes, two peaches and six bananas myself."

I went and sat besides her. That's what I always did, whether she was in happy mood or foul. I didn't know where else to go. This has been my home since long.

She patted my back and I licked her feet. The familiar scent greeted my nostrils, but, there was something different. I could sense the blocks amiss. What was fate hinting at?

I focused, and recollected the events of the past few hours. The bank, the empty vault, arrival of police, and me sniffing the ground, acting innocent.

There! Like a bolt of lightening it struck me. Hard! A little too hard for my liking.

Before I could assemble my thoughts, and complete the puzzle, I heard the sharp wail of siren. It was the Police Car. It could only mean one thing.

I have been chased all this while.

I panicked. I didn't want to go back to that jail. They didn't serve any watermelons there. I scurried for cover, behind the shoe rack, underneath the cupboard, beneath the bed. However, my confusion turned into conviction as I saw my mistress too going through a similar palpitation. She was sweating profusely, was running helter skelter, and muttering, "Why is the Police coming? Have they found out? Oh My God?"

It all became clear now. The scent, the bank, and home.

The puzzle had completed itself.

Click To Read Episode Nine

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

DeoRebon: All About CintholDeo Stick

Cosmetics & Toiletries are necessary to use in today’s city life. In last few years consumer health awareness has increased tremendously around the world. World is largely growing focus on health issues, cosmetics and toiletries in the media and increasing investment on the same.

Over the past few years, cosmetics and toiletries manufacturers have taken advantage of the expanded global health and wellness trends by launching a range of hair care products, which contains vitamins, and providing deodorant for men online.

Cinthol, a brand with legacy, has continued to reinvent itself with the changing times. The market scenario has changed a lot. With it Cinthol too has upgraded with their soaps formulation, product mix and packaging which suits the need of new generation consumer. It has introduced an all new range of soaps, talcs, deos, deo stick, deodorant for men and shower gels in different varieties with colorful packaging. It’s a brand which today's youth can relate to.

Cinthol has launched its deostick for men which is soft on the skin and has three times lasting effect when compared to others. Thus, it becomes an automatic choice for most.

Cinthol rush deo promises safety to the skin, and doesn't contain alcohol. It can be used for long lasting fragrance that will make one feel good about himself.

Cinthol provides deo stick online, an easy way to get the pack loaded with freshness. As a brand, Cinthol has already set a benchmark. With these innovative products, it promises to further deliver as per consumers' needs.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Lavender Musk

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Seven

(Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com/)

Click To Read Episode Six

Cats have always been sinister, spreading notoriety with their nine lives, but today, I was grateful to them.

"Here, check this out," my feline inmates pointed towards a brick in the wall. It looked ordinary, like all the other grayed out bricks, but it turned out to be different when one of them walked towards it and said "Meow!"

Instantly, the brick disappeared, leaving an opening, wide enough for me to get out.

"H...how did you do this?" I was shocked. This was magic!

"We cats can do anything. Now go. It's late in the night, and this opening leads to a tunnel straight out of the prison compound. You will escape unhurt."

"But how did the brick disappear?" I asked, dazed, "and why are you still staying in prison when you can move out any time?"

"You ask too many questions," the older one said exasperated. "Who said we are stuck here all day and night? We go out whenever we want, and return when we are hungry and need some safe place to rest. And regarding our magic, well this is your story. Let our story be part of another diary. Now go, go, run."

I leaped out of the opening, through the tunnel, and within a few minutes, was breathing the fresh aroma of freedom. I relieved myself behind a dense bush, and closed my eyes. It was dangerous to wander in this dark, and I thought it would be best to wait till day break. I yawned, my eyes droopy, and I slept.

I dreamt of all things weird. There were butterflies hovering over my head, laughing at me, and then suddenly they turned into watermelons. One, two, three, the watermelons dropped over my head.

"Ouch!" I woke up. The sun was high. Probably I had slept for too long, something which my tired body desired. Now was the time to spring back into action. I had to find the culprit.

I licked my paws, and ran across the streets.

Click To Read Episode Eight

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Six

(Image Source: http://www.akc.org)

Click To Read Episode Five

Story Ahead ...

I was in jail. This wasn't something to be proud of, but it was a different experience altogether, and hence, the thought - "I am in jail!". My cell, or cage, was brown in colour, with patches of stains all over the wall. There were two more animals in the same cell, both of them feline creatures, a species I hate. They stared at me from the other corner of the room, and whispered among themselves.

I closed my eyes and counted till ten, took a deep breath, and counted again till ten, this time in reverse. Being with cats irked me. Firstly, they lacked manners. They did what they wanted to, without thinking of others. Secondly, they spoiled stuffs, milk, and eggs, and rice puddings, and most often even my watermelons. I hated them.

And thus I kept to my corner. Quiet.

"Did he really rob the bank?"

"He is too tiny. How will he?"

"But what if he did?"

"That makes him a criminal."

"Like us?"

"No. We only chased mice. His crime is greater."


"Meow! Meow!"

I could hear their conversation. Clear. I have had enough. I barked in anger, "Shut up you two! Else I will teach you a lesson you will forever remember. I did not rob any bank, though I intended to. Someone had already escaped with all the money before I went, and the Police, thinking me as an associate of the accused, put me in this cell."

The two cats smiled nonchalantly among themselves, and the larger one spoke, "My! My! That's a sob story. Don't worry. We can help you out of here. We can set you free."

"Really!" My eyes lit up in amazement.

"Yes, really. But we do have a condition," the smaller cat spoke, licking his whiskers.

"What is that?" I eyed them suspiciously.

"We need no interference from you when we enter your owner's house in search of food. Deal?" both of them said in chorus.

This was a rough proposition. I was loyal to my Mistress. All of us dogs are. And to betray her would mean violating our morals. I was in a dilemma.

"Take all your time, but remember, the longer your think, the larger is the delay."

I took my decision. "I agree to your offer, only because I need to find out the truth and bring the robber to the forefront. But how will I get out of here?"

Click To Read Episode Seven

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Five

(Image Source: http://wallpapercave.com/)



Story Ahead ...

I jumped at the open window, and immediately heard shouts.

"What is that?"

"A dog?"

"Whose dog is it?"

Always an attentive species, we have been conditioned to lift our ears and listen whenever we hear someone speak. I did the same, sitting on the window sill, grasping every words spoken. I imagined that they would help me, and bring back all the money to the bank, and next weekend, I would return to loot them all.

But no, I was woken up from my stupor by the firm hands that held me, and put down on the floor. I looked up, and what I saw were not voices of hope, but angry faces. The Police personnel surrounded me, growling and muttering among themselves, while I, acting as an innocent little chihuahua, sniffed the floor, their shoes, and socks.

All of a sudden, it struck me. Hard. Like a bolt. A lightening.

Before I could join the broken pieces of my thought, I heard a booming voice, from the Chief of the Police, "This dog must be an associate of the thieves. Probably they left him behind on hearing the sirens. Take him and lock him in the prison. We will see what we can get out of him."

And then, like the twists in stories I have heard of, I too had become part of one. Though I did not rob the bank, I was a culprit to be put behind bars, my primary concern being "Do they serve watermelons in prison?"

If not, then I had certainly dived into a deep mess. How shall I get out now?

Will the real culprit be arrested?

And will I get a second chance at changing my fortune?

I had no answer today. Probably, tomorrow.

Woof ! Woof !

Saturday, July 08, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Four

 (Image Source: http://wallpapercave.com/)

Click To Read Episode Three

Story Ahead

A husky wail erupted from a distance, slowly reverberating into a loud alarm, and I identified it to be the siren of police jeep. The same siren that had blared in our colony when the fat old man of the red house had stolen Kitty and Litty from their mother, the whiskered Mrs. Meow. Or the same siren that woke me up from sleep when the short grumpy fellow had robbed munchies of all neighborhood pets. It was the same siren, now disturbing the silence of the vault, the noise echoing in the darkness.

And emptiness.

Robbery! The bank was robbed! Someone had already planned for it. Someone other than me. Someone quicker than me. And all of a sudden I felt inferior. My confidence hit a rocky low, and wanted to cry. I, in a daze, mixed with disappointment (how can I pay for the watermelons now?), was suddenly brought back to reality by the sound of approaching footsteps.I quickly marched towards a dark corner, behind a shoe rack (it was smelly, and I love playing with smelly shoes), trying to focus. I could hear people talking, four or five, standing in front of the vault, trying to analyze the situation.

The lights were turned on. This was the Police, investigating the crime scene. I stuck to my corner, a mute spectator. A sad spectator. I wished I had executed my plan a bit earlier. I blamed myself, and my fate, and the stars, and planets. I blamed the universe for conspiring against me.

And then, as if the heavens were in a mood to apologize, my attention was diverted to the opposite window, a window that I had not noticed till now. It was open, and a shadow loomed over it. In a moment, it disappeared. Was it the robber? Did he carry the key to my delicious fate?

Without thinking twice, I jumped towards the window. I had to get hold of the robber. I had to get hold of the money.

And the yummy watermelons!

Woof ! Woof !

Click To Read Episode Five

Sunday, July 02, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Three

Previous Chapters

Story Ahead

It was a Sunday. Just another lazy Sunday. People on the streets were immersed in their newspapers, tea and pets, while I, another pet, was strutting on the 7th Avenue, alone (but that was what I preferred now, 'cause I couldn't afford to have a company at this hour. Nope, I wasn't going to share my loot, neither my watermelons).

Soon, I turned around the sideways, and the large metallic gates of Regional Bank of Hoofs and Paws smiled broadly at the sun, reflecting the excitement stored within me. I was excited, and nervous, and joyous, and afraid, all at the same time, a conglomeration of emotions burdened my thoughts, but I was determined to not let my resolve dissolve. And thus, I walked around the building, grey and red, and golden in rays, searching for a window, or a small gateway.

And my eyes lit up. There was an open window (how could the bank be so careless?)

I jumped towards the opposite wall, and then at the window. Wow. I was flying (and would soon fly out with money, hurray!). Watermelons started revolving around my eyes! Slurp!

The bank was dark. The lights were turned off. But who needed light. I smelt the floor, trying to identify the fragrance of fresh currency notes, and then followed the trail. I had to be careful though. No alarms should be turned off. Not that it mattered. No one could imagine a dog robbing a bank. Let alone accuse one.

Gradually, I reached a large door, the vault, the types I have seen in movies, with revolving handles, and pristine white in colour, as if painted in ivory. But, something wasn't right. I racked my tiny chihuahua brain, nodding from left to right, wagging my tail from north to south, thinking, jumping, thinking. What could be wrong.

And, woof, this was wrong.

The door was open. It wasn't locked, nor was it wide ajar, but it was open, a bit. As I peeped inside, my eyes walloped out in horror. There was no money.

There was not a penny to be robbed.

Woof ! Woof !

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode Two

Previous Chapters

  1. Episode One

Story Ahead

I know it has been a long time coming, but I have been busy. Really busy. In thoughts, and cats, and mice, and the occasional dragonflies.

And of course watermelon.

I look at the painting on the wall, and the sunset beyond the window, and all I see is red and green. Juicy pulp flowing through my tongue. Slurp.

Woof ! Woof !

I wag my tail in excitement, running round and round, and hit a table, returning back to my senses immediately.

"Remember, there is no watermelon," I sound harsh to myself, and rude, and obnoxious.

And pathetically poor.

And that's when I device a plan. The plan. To earn money, lots of money, so much that I do not need to beg in front of my mistress with droopy eyes. I will be able to buy my own water melon, hundreds of them, or perhaps even more.

Yes, I was going to be rich.

I had decided finally. To. Rob. A. Bank. You heard that correct.

This Sunday.

The Sunday.

Woof! Woof!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Watermelon Diaries - Episode One

Four mangoes. Two peaches. Six bananas. These were what I was supposed to buy. Nothing less, nothing more. But my eyes couldn't resist; my nose lured me too, and here I was, standing in front of the water-melon counter.

When I reached home, I was carrying two big water-melons in my shopping bag. Those were extra. Those were not in the list. Not needed. Unnecessary.

"Unnecessary," she repeated, and I obliged, my eyes lowered, her gaze fiery. She took a step forward, I edged back, hitting the wall, my eyes till counting the floor tiles.

"You are strange. I have never seen a dog so fond of watermelons."

She was right. Chihuahuas love fish. They adore pieces of meat. And they love several other delicacies. But watermelons?

"Err. They taste so juicy. Yuck," my brother had told me, before we parted.

My parents didn't approve either. I didn't approve them too. And that was why they abandoned me.

And was adopted. To play. To cuddle. To shop.

But not to shop watermelons.

And then the worst happened. "Tomorrow onwards, I will give you only the exact money. For four mangoes, two peaches, six bananas. No wastages on watermelons."

I cried, I yelped, but in vain. And then I realized, I need to make my own money.

But how?

Read More

  1. Episode Two

Friday, April 21, 2017

She Saw The Lilies Fight

she saw the lilies fight
in the darkness of the night
out in the garden
narrating their plight

they fought for soil
and the sun and moon
they fought for rain
even the next day and noon

they tore each other
uprooting the lives
piercing through the petals
their twigs sharp knives

"We cant live in peace
no more in harmony"
the lilies struck each other
accusing cheat and felony

"But why, what happened,
you were so good till now,"
she tried to reason
but the lilies stared and frowned

"We are lured by riches
and power and possession
we have learnt from humans
waging war across nations."

"What purpose have they solved
None, we know
And yet blinded by greed
to wars, they never say no"

"We aim to be superior
just like you humans
so don't stop us yet
we are befriending the demons."

she was struck by horror
watching the lilies fight
out in the garden
narrating their plight

they tore each other
uprooting the lives
piercing through the petals
their twigs sharp knives

This Poem is shared with

Monday, March 06, 2017

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Rat and I

(Image Source: http://www.nfrs.org)

help me Lord
oh help help help
help me today
please help help help

'cause there is a rat
under the mat
wish I could have
a large brown cat
who would chase it down
and hunt it out
and free me from fears
and nervous bout

the clock ticks twelve
it's still in sight
the time now two
what if it bites
I close my eyes
and shudder in fright
is it on my pillow
squeaking this night

a rush here, a hustle there
I could't take it longer
turning on the lights
I headed to the ladder
picking up the broom
and a stick as well
I pledged to myself
to make it's life hell

banging the stick
I hurried to my room
the rat smiled, winked
zip zap zoom
teasing and tossing
it ran to the kitchen
disappearing out of sight
all of a sudden

I retired to my bed
but eluded by sleep
what if it returns
my mind haunting deep
I closed my eyes
breathing in and out
wait, did I hear it again
the rat's squeaking pout

This Poem is shared with Imaginary Garden - The Tuesday Platform.

Friday, January 27, 2017

The Pigeon Who Spoke No Word

neither a word
nor 'hello'
he sat still, still
seeking warmth
beyond my window sill

gray and white
and a pinch of black
I couldn't go closer
as he slept on the rack
tip toe tip toe
but he might get scared
hush hush hush hush
or was he in prayer
eyes open wide
and yet motionless
braving the cold
of January heartless
somewhere burnt a log
the smell of flying embers
I looked at the clock
and retired to my chamber

'Good Morning'
poked the sun
the curtains half asleep
I got myself a bun
brushed and bathed
chores all done
when all of a sudden
my head did turn

beyond the window sill
my guest no longer seen
perhaps on his way
from where he has been
a thank you note
for the stay last night
could he have left
before being out of sight

only if I had
looked down for a second
by the shrubs and bushes
his lifeless form awakened
drowned in the mist
the night had to offer
laid on the streets
embracing death proper

the shiver went unnoticed
his prayers had been deaf
who could have noticed
hardly anyone cared
men butchering men
humans a shameless race
who would even care
about a dead pigeon's case

and he rested
until picked among the rags
and he tasted
the garbage in the bags

neither a word
nor 'hello'
he slept still, still
seeking warmth
beyond my gory sill 

This Poem is shared with dVerse - Open Link Night.