Monthly Archives: September 2018

A tiny laugh but much worry

Today the earth went around the sun 46 times from the day I was born.

Kid: appa, we need to get Amma a gift.

Dad: And it needs to be something only she would use and we won’t share.

Mon: You should get me a bra then.

Dad and daughter face palm.


The Kid is lying on my bed, burning a fever. She threw up every morsel she ate all day today, and her periods are giving her grief.

It’s close to midnight. I am lying beside her, unable to sleep. I can feel the heat from her body and she looks like an old rag doll, my heart’s breaking.

I will take her to my family physician tomorrow but for now, I am worried sick.

Oh, I wish I could take her illness from her…



I had a dream

My hormonal dreams are back.  When I say dreams, I gloss over how horrible they are.  Last night, for instance, I dreamt that I lost my way (I lose my way a lot in my dreams; Freud would attribute it to something sexual I am sure, but I just think I am seriously lost in life, and push back the uncomfortable questions and doubts into the dark underbelly of subconsciousness, which get back at me in dreams) to an exam hall, finally get there, read the question paper, the question says “Why did wearing of red robes by nuns in the Vatican result in world war II” (do you think I can make that up?), and I have no clue.  I also realised that I don’t have a paper to write on, and awoke in cold sweat.

I also have interesting split persona dreams – while a dream is unraveling, another part of me is a spectator of it, and provides a running commentary for my benefit. For example, in the above dream, the second me kept saying “are you going to ever stop dreaming about exams…but thank God, at least you are not naked in this one.  Why are you dreaming about nuns wearing red?  It’s not even period time yet…”.

My paternal uncle (and I’ve said this before), has Alzheimer’s.  Whenever I get such dreams, I worry.  What if the dreams of now are harbingers of cognitive decline in my later years?  Oh well.


Lately, I’ve been making lifestyle changes to my life.  This comes from the realisation that I am perhaps in the geometric middle of my lifespan, and from here-on, unless I clean up my lifestyle, it’s going to get pretty choppy.  Not that I had too much of a messy lifestyle, but the stubborn visceral fat tells a minor tale of its own.  So apart from nutritional balance etc., I have adopted the practice of daily “abhayangam” – a daily 15 minute oil self-massage before showering.  It’s been three months, and the effects seem to show now.  Three people have told me in the past week that my skin’s glowing.  I suspect they saw me at dusk when the lighting was just right, but still, I’d like to attribute it to the abhayangam.

I’d definitely recommend it to mid-lifers.


I have one chapter to write, one paper to edit and one media report to frame for the next two days.  I also have six proposals to write in the next three weeks.  And the kid’s exams are on, so intensive tutoring as well.


So, that’s my Monday.  How have you been?





Morning instigation

Would you or would you not get irritated by the following mail forward from a business associate early in the morning?

First of all – what the heck?

Second of all – What’s with all the * ?

Thirdly – what the effing heck?


Subject:  Truths

*_A Lovely Logic for a Beautiful Life_*  *Never* try to maintain *Relations* in your *Life,* Just try to *Maintain* *Life* in your *Relations*

*Don’t waste Words*    On People who *deserve* your *Silence,*   *Sometimes,* The most *Powerful* thing you can *say* is, *Nothing at All*

*Sincere Words* are *Not fine;* *Fine words* are *Not sincere.*

_If Your *Actions*    *inspire others*_    To *Dream* More, *Learn* More, *Do* More,       And *Become* More,    *You are A Leader*_

*Age* is Not a *Barrier,*     *It’s*  A *Limitation* you put on Your *Mind*

A little *Sincerity* is A *Dangerous* thing, And  A *Great deal* of it is Absolutely *Fatal.*

*Never* ignore someone who *cares* for *You* Because  Someday You will *Realise* you have  *Lost A Diamond*   While  You were busy *Collecting Stones*

*Mistakes*  Happen by *Situation* and *Not* by *Intention*     So  Always Try to *know*  The *Reason* behind  *Every Mistake* of Your *Beloved Ones* That’s the Way to *value* a *Relation*

Monday medley

Busy-ness interruptus

I had expected to be frantically busy today.  I had to choose topics to write for a defense solicitation, and that takes a lot of time because there are many (>20) materials science related topics, and I have to read every one of them, do the background search etc., and it would take me two days to come up with a list of 5-10 topics to write on.  This time, the solicitation had only six topics related to materials science, of which only four turned out to be writeable.  I am very nervous, because this has been a bad year for the client and the current solicitation is doing nothing to help.  But I digress.

My sifting through took only one hour today and I am on the loose end now.   On the media job, I have not heard back from the people on whom I wrote up press releases, in order to release them to the press.  So, there are two press releases in limbo.  I have four people who promised to send editing work across to me last week, but they are getting delayed.  My discomfort is partly because I seem utterly jobless now (after two full weeks of continuous engaging work), but more because all of the promised work would come together, and I would go crazy.

The sun’s moody

The weather is dead as a dodo.  It rained last night (yay), but the sun is behind clouds now, so that it is neither raining nor is it sunny.  I’ve never been to England, but my father has, and says the the English weather is like this – utterly depressing and dull. I’d probably wilt if this weather continued – I need a healthy dose of Vit. D in my system, I say.


Talking of Vit. D.  A couple of weeks back (before I got all busy), I had visited my family physician because of some niggly issues I had been having for a while – a dull ache in my lower stomach, which I had thought was related to my ovaries, joint pain, which I thought were due to some osteo-related stuff and general mental fog.  The doc said I had probably had a stomach bug – which I thought was balderdash because how can joint pain and brain fog be related to stomach bug?  To satisfy me, and because it had been a couple of years since I had had blood-work done, he wrote out a battery of tests, in addition to giving me some mild antibiotics for the stomach infection he claimed.  What do you know?  The blood work came out squeaky clean (blood sugar in the geometric middle of normal, iron in its most ideal level, thyroid hormones with textbook values, and “I’ve never seen any Indian woman with calcium and Vitamin D in limit like this”, says my doc) and halfway through the antibiotic course, my stomach pain, joint aches and wool head went away.  My better half thinks my ailments were psychosomatic, which emphasis on the psycho, but I am gobsmacked at how fragile the biochemical system of the human body is.


Why does one bake cookies the day after she resolves to go easy on sugar?


Does anyone else think Jeremy Brett makes the best Sherlock?


If there are people reading this blog, living abroad, and plan to visit me sometime, I’d like some vanilla extract please (if it’s not too expensive, i.e.)?  Vanilla extract here requires sale of a couple of kidneys and I am getting sick of the vanilla essence that I use because it has a terribly bitter aftertaste and chemically smell.  Thanks, much.





I have developed a habit of listening to podcasts when I am cooking, about eclectic topics, from how to make your own green toilet cleaner, to transcendental meditation.  For a phase, I listened to podcasts on lifestyle topics – how to organise your home, how to live mindfully, how to achieve…and so on. There were a bunch of podcasts on how to wake up early.

Now people who know me, know that my bucket list consists of only one item – wake up before sunrise.  Needless to say, this set of podcasts appealed to me.  There were many tips:

  1. Sleep early:  I would normally sleep around 11 PM, and I moved it up by an hour, so that I could awaken by 5.30 AM and not in abject panic at 6.30.
  2. No screen time before bed. Check.
  3. A glass of warm milk before bed. Check.
  4. Read something relaxing in bed. Non-fiction for me, check.
  5. Have activities that inspire you for the day after, so that there is incentive to wake up.  Have I told you that I love my job?
  6. Plan your following day meticulously so that you don’t stress in the morning.  Check.
  7. Keep your alarm away from you so that you have to get up to switch it off.  Check.

And it’s not just one day.  Every day for the past two weeks.

Guess what time I have been waking up through the two weeks?

6.30 AM.

Every single day.

One speaker said “there is no such thing as morning-person and evening-person. We can be what we choose to be”.



* The demon prince of Lanka, who slept all the time.