Monday, 18 September 2017

Find your way home, Pip!

What I feel now is immense grief. At the loss of a cat we fostered for 4 months. Though I was sending Pip home to my parents, where she would have ample space to flourish in, I was extremely apprehensive about it. My last few days with her, I'd talk to her citing my old school countdown - 5 more days for you to leave, 4 more days before you're parted from your brothers/lovers, 3 more days till I hear you purr and the like. And it was like she knew that she was going. The last 2 days with us, she was most affectionate. She cuddled and purred and came tunnelling through the sheets like the creature from tremors. Or maybe she always did... 

Last night, the boys were restless - more so than ever. It was really windy and that made them skittish. They probably missed her too. With no Srikanth at home, Saki 
came on lay on my legs, which he hadn’t done in a  while. On any other day, the three of them would be sleeping on the window sill, with her suckling on one of their paw pads. She really was the sweetest, with her pinker than pink paws and nose. 

Now I wish I hadn’t packed her off at all. Despite the space she would have had in her new home, despite how much less poop I would have to clear from the litter box every day, despite me thinking that the Bombay house that we were moving into (but hadn’t yet found) in 6 months, would be too small for 3 cats. I wish I'd kept her and not let her go. 

I picked her up from the street thinking she had been run over. She had run across the road, and smashed her face on the footpath. Just picking her up from the tailoring shop she ran into was traumatic. She was a wild one. Only 2 months, but oh so feisty! The scars I picked up that day are only fading now.

For the first week, we kept her confined to one room of the house. While I was out on a work trip, Srikanth looked after her. She must have thought he was torturing her. Trying to pin her down each time she needed to have her medicines. Try and hold her, and she would squirm like you were out to kill her. The last time I took her to the vet to get her shots, and get her declawed, she was a little nightmare. In her attempt to escape, she clawed her way down to my foot. I'm left with some prize scars from that day as well. 

It took her almost 4 months to start loving us. At first she hated everything... me, Srikanth, the cats, any sound... She slowly started making herself at home. She decided that the best places to pee were either the laundry bin with extremely dirty clothes or a pile of fresh laundry. She turned out to be the only one of the three who didn’t flee at the sound of the doorbell. Of late, she would be the first to venture out, when there were guests at home. She would come into the bathroom to hang out with me while I pooped and showered. Her little toy mouse, she would play with, like the world would come to a standstill if she stopped. She learnt by emulating her brothers - any time they came and rubbed themselves for love, she would to. And I was a fool to send her off. This creature who never let me carry her, would purr so loudly each time I ran a fingertip down her spine.

My mum said that she wouldn’t be able to guarantee her safety; in terms of, "I cannot assure you that she'll stay at home". She would be loved, she would be fed, and she'd be an inside cat - provided she didn’t run off at the very beginning. And that should have been a red flag. We even considered heading home to drop her off till she settled in. A fleeting thought it was; I wish I'd taken heed. 

And so my parents arrived home with Pip in tow yesterday. She had apparently responded to my mum and purred like a little motor, when she had tried petting her on the way home. Once she was let out at home, she ran off the minute they opened her box. Turns out she was hiding in some corner of the kitchen. At night, she was confined to 4 rooms, with all the windows shut. It was not to be though. By morning, she had slipped out again, leaving no trace. My mum last saw her in the guest bathroom, but she fled as soon as my mum said hello. The only upside that it looked as if she had come in from outside; perhaps she knows that she can come into the house.

And now, she's on this big estate without a clue as to where she is. Her brothers are not around; instead there's a big fat cat who may or may not like her. And her parents, who loved her and fed her, gave her away to someplace far, far away. She does not trust the new people in the house. And it’s raining like the world is trying to drown itself.

I don’t know if she’s eaten or pooped. I don’t know if she’s inside or outside. I don’t know if she drenched in the rain or if she's been smart enough to find 
shelter. But I do hope she knows she is in a safe place - she only has to find her way in. 

My Pippat, please be safe, please be fine. I'm so sorry for putting you through what I have. I miss you terribly and really hope you find your way back home. 

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Saturday strains...

Oh wooden chair, you're wondrous for the summer 
Thanks for not heating up my bummer


The simple words... they don't come
Instead, they send their TISS-educated cousin
Talking about livelihoods and development and impact 
But is it worthwhile? 
To give others a voice
When my own has been hushed  

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Nosocomephobia or One more reason why I detest hospitals

Hospitals are such annying places. Especially when you go by yourself. And if you are lucky enough to have a raging fever and headache, you can bet that the hospital is out to get you. Take the case of Manipal hospital. Despite it being expensive as shit, I'm comfortable coming here since I've seen the insides of it from the time I was 12 or 13 courtesy 2 hip replacements that my grandmother underwent. So I continue to come here. Like a fool.

I'm down with a fever and a hacking cough. A relapse since I neglected to take the antibiotics prescribed by another doctor. So came here on Sunday. Spent 600 as consultation fee to see someone who asked me to get a number of tests. Tests reports showed some slight anomalies and I still had a cough that would kill a lesser being. Report in hand, I make my way to the hospital once again. And wonder of wonders, the doctor is not here.

So I talk to him over the phone. He had prescribed Calpol! He says, yes, continue taking the medicines I gave you. But I know that the throat is in dire need of antibiotics, else I'll probably cough up my lungs in a couple of hours. I also want to stop feeling like I want to quit work, run away to some obscure place where I manage to become really skinny, endure this horrible feeling of homesickness, etc etc. And did I mention my dear boyfriend, who is my rock of Gibraltar especially when it comes to hospital visits is not in town. And that my brother who was for the first two days was really useless. And that I'm missing my mother  who would have taken care of me oh so beautifully.

So I ask to see another doctor. And I need to pay once again to see him. Another 600 bucks to listen to him say ok dear, have another Calpol. And I need to wait for 45 minutes to an hour before I can see him. Fuck this shit! Seems more like a money making racket than a place that's supposed to look after the sick.

Ok then. Venting done and I'm feeling a teensy bit better.One last exciting little tidbit. It is understandable that hospitals will have sick people. But why must they burp loudly? Especially when they are sitting next to me. And then follow it up with a ladylike excuse me.

Fuck my life and toodles!

Monday, 11 July 2016

2 extremely hilarious things I heard today

Hilarious thing no 1: Where beer is fine...

Lunch break at work. 

Old conservative gentleman to a rather young single woman: "Beer is a ladies drink. You can drink beer." 

(All I could think of was all the whiskeys and Old Monks I've consumed by the gallon.) 

Hilarious thing no 2: Where unmarried women obviously mingle...

A message from an old friend. 

"Can't believe you're getting married. Thought you would die single and ready to mingle."

(This is weird only because I have been mingling with one man for eight years now, and she knows it! Not marrying him sooner = obviously mingling. If only... :p)

Friday, 15 January 2016

Flashback: On the joy of repairing

I have vivid memories of my childhood, where something in the house would go kaput, many a time, because my brother or I (mostly me) felt the need to meddle with it. Living in a remote area in the Nilgiris meant that we would have to wait to get it fixed till we travelled to town (Gudalur or Sulthan Bathery, both around 25 km away), or if it needed major repair, a trip to the ‘big city’, typically Mysore, Bangalore or Ooty.
We of course, couldn't wait until then! So my father would roll up his sleeves, sit at the dining table with the machine in question placed on a brightly coloured cloth, and get to work. In case of the VCR (where it almost always swallowed the cassette and refused to spit it out), he would slowly and painstakingly unscrew the screws, remove the top panel, and use the screwdriver to wedge out the cassette. This would be followed by removing the dust that had gathered since the last ‘operation’.
I really am not too sure if he knew what he was doing, but once he reassembled it, the mixie or VCR or whatever it was, would actually work! If it didn’t function as it was supposed to, he would go through the dissembling/assembling process once again. This saga repeated itself at least five or six times before my father would throw his hands up in the air, and decide that it needed to be looked at by someone more competent.
The times have changed though. These days, when something goes kaput, I pick up the phone, google the nearest service centre, call them and place a complaint and wait for the gentleman (or woman) in question to come home to fix it.
Within two working days preferably.

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Only men eat crab...

Overheard at a restaurant, from a table that was belting crabs...

Father to son: You have to put your finger in and scoop it out. It's a man's job! You're eating like a girl... 

My blood boiled and I really wanted to say something to the man about teaching his son these life lessons with sexist undertones. I went into a full blown moral dilemma about whether or not I should teach him how to parent, or if it was my place to do so. I did wonder if I was being a tad too intolerant. 

I didn't tell him anything though, and picked up my food and left. In retrospect, I wish I had left him a note or something, so I could get the point across, without undermining him in front of his family.

P.S. I too had crab for lunch and I did perfectly fine.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015


Sometimes help comes to you from the most unexpected places. You ever felt like consoling random strangers you've seen crying? Not always, but there is something so sad about it, especially when they are by themselves.

Woke up feeling a little shaken after a horrible, horrible dream featuring an auto driver, a tornado, a blues concert at Freedom Park and an old friend from school who I haven't spoken to in many years. Had an excellent breakfast followed by a spectacular fight with my mum. Door slamming, nasty exchange of words, the works.

So here I was in the auto feeling sorry for myself and alone as alone can be, silently sobbing as we made our way through traffic. The auto driver glanced at me in the rear-view mirror a couple of times. By the time I reached office, I had sort of made peace with the situation and was calmer. The sobbing had certainly stopped. I got down to pay the auto driver, who then had a few kind words for me.

He said, "I saw you were upset. Don't take tension (every south Indian's favourite phrase), everything will be ok. You go eat something and sleep for a bit and then when you wake up, everything will be ok." Yaaay, food and sleep - the solution to most problems!

The effect his words had on me was amazing. Almost immediately, it felt like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. 

It really is wonderful how kind words from strange, unexpected quarters can lift you up. Thank you dear Auto Anna. I'm sure to have a good day!