Half-yearly exams are ending
tomorrow and finally I have got some time to put my thoughts to words. More so,
because the only exam left is the third language and darling daughter is
well-equipped to deal with French on her own. I am not exactly a passive
listener for other subjects and try to give my two cents in the time of need.
And yes, Google baba is always there for us when we get stuck.
Moving on from the family
brouhaha, today I would like to bring up the topic of ‘screen time’ which was
almost absent in our times. These days, kids are engulfed with various
categories of screen time, starting from television, tablet, laptop, and our
very own favourite gadget, mobile! So one thing after another and there you go.
Children do not have time to lift an eyelid or go play outside; remember
physical activity is a must. They are glued to the available gadget whenever
they can make fool of their parents. I have noticed that some parents in an
attempt to complete their work at home themselves provide these amenities to
their children. They will do their own work while the child happily watches
youtube videos to the hilt. Even infants these days would not eat their food if
they don’t see a specific program on the tablet which the poor bai holds right
in front of their eyes…
Coming to the point, needless to
say that I am not against the concept of screen time, but I feel that it should
be restricted by the parents and should be available to the children under some
form of supervision. It is for the experts to decide how much time should be
spent by a child in front of the screen. It should not happen that the child’s
eyesight suffers due to the neglect by the parents. That’s the reason why
grandparents are again in demand these days as they can at least engage the
child in a conversation and distract his/her mind from the screen.
There are parents who are giving a mobile to their children at a young age of 10 or 11 but it should be used under guidance. Similar should be the case for all other screens. Most importantly, there should be some emphasis on the family time when either everyone eats together or are engaged in an activity. What do you feel about this topic? How much screen time are your children getting?
This month saw the untimely
passing away of two stalwarts of BJP, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley. It is
indeed a sad month for the party as these leaders are irreplaceable. The void
that they have left cannot be filled by anyone easily. Both the leaders were
very knowledgeable and had a large fan following across the nation. May their
respective souls rest in peace.
Right now I am a little excited
on hearing the news that our very own badminton player, P. V. Sindhu has won
the World Championship. Incidentally, it is her mom’s birthday and she has
dedicated her win to her mother. What a nice piece of news to end a Sunday
with. Sindhu was trying to win for the last couple of times but could bag the
medal this time round. Coach Gopichand must be on cloud nine and why not. It’s
a big honour for the nation.
The situation in J & K is
slowly returning to normal. It will take a lot of time though. Due to the militancy,
the development could not take place but slowly people are realising that the
government decision to scrape Article 370 was the right one. Recently read
about a couple who left their high profile jobs to settle down in Laddakh and
help in the overall development of the region. Thanks to them, solar panels
have been installed in many schools and children are getting the education they
so rightly deserve.
I have been reading a book or two
and the next post would most probably be a book review. So, stay tuned!
Educated is a memoir by Tara
Westover which has quickly climbed the success ladder due to its neat prose and
simple writing. It is actually the story of Tara from her childhood days to the
present. There is a flow in the book as when you will pick it up you would want
to go back to complete it as soon as possible. The setting is of Buck’s peak,
south western Idaho in America where Tara’s family lived. They were actually Mormon
survivalists who did not believe in sending their kids to school. Tara’s father
suffered from bipolar disorder and the family had to witness his ideological
mania over and over again. Her mother was a midwife and herbalist whose
business prospered later in the day and she gained much reputation with her
herbs and tinctures.
Tara was the youngest of the seven
children who had to study on their own as there was no emphasis on the studies.
Rather, children were made to work in Gene’s junkyard scrapping metal and
cleaning other stuff. Whenever anyone got hurt they were not allowed any
medical care as the father thought that it was against the wishes of the lord.
So when Tara has tonsillitis, she is made to stand in the sun with her mouth
open so that it gets healed itself. When Gene gets burned, even then they do
not take him to the hospital though the burns were severe. They make do with
the balms that Faye prepares for Gene.
When Tara joins a singing group,
the clothes they wear are termed whorish by the father. The negative influence
of younger brother Schwan on Tara is evident throughout the book. He would get
mad with her if she did not do as expected.
Tara is interested in studies and
tries to clear the ACT so that she can join college. She just didn’t want to do
the junkyard work anymore. While at BYU, she gets exposed to the outside world
for the first time and her professor sees the spark in her and sends her on a
scholarship to Cambridge. From Cambridge, she further goes on to Harvard for
her doctorate. She does have a few boyfriends, but she is unable to confide in
them about her family.
Educated just shows how someone
who was not even homeschooled properly can go on to achieve the degrees that
most people would die for. To be frank, real education is not really about the
degrees but is a freedom of choice and facing reality with all your guts. It
means living with passion and doing what you love most so that you achieve the
real purpose in your life.
The suicide of VG Siddhartha has
yet again brought depression to the forefront. He was unable to pay his debts
and as a result chose the easier route to eternal peace. He didn’t want to take
any further blame for the dire situation at Café Coffee Day. CCD is a popular
coffee outlet for the youngsters as one can sit there without being disturbed
for long. Even free Wi-Fi is available.
Depression can ruin anyone’s life
but when it goes out of hand it takes the form of suicide. People with
depression are so despondent at times that they don’t think even once how their
near and dear ones will cope with the situation once they are gone. The mind
plays games that no one knows about. It is very necessary to contain the
problem before it goes out of hand either through medication or counselling or
both in moderation. The role of family members in providing support to the
depressed is also of utmost importance.
Another interesting piece of news
that I came across today related to a customer asking for a non-muslim guy for
delivering food from Zomato as saavan is going on. He received a befitting
reply from the founder Deepinder Goyal, “We aren’t sorry to lose business that
comes in the way of our values.” Actually it is a dangerous trend which should
be contained as early as possible. Such absurd demands cannot be met and they
only show the mental bankruptcy of the person demanding.
India is a secular state and
people should be encouraged to treat the fellow men in the same regard. There
should be no distinction based on caste or creed and everyone should be treated
with equal respect though sadly that is not the case. But the bottomline is
that whenever there is an opportunity to put things right, we should do that as
was done by Zomato founder.
I lost my baby Beetle yesterday. He was a pet dachshund and lived his life to the fullest, being ill for about a month before moving away to a whole new world. I am still coming to terms with the fact that he is no more around and I can’t take his name often. I am remembering all the good moments spent with him one by one. He was always active and jovial at home. Outside of home, he used to become a bit territorial but we could manage that. I was his mom and he was closest to me though Harsha and Eva were also very close to him, something I witnessed when his last rights were being performed. All of us broke into tears as we shared a bond and Beetle was our family member.
What was the most funny thing
about Beetle? Well, he had a liking for the carpet in the living room and used
to dig right in its middle whenever he felt like. It was as if a tunnel was
being built with all diligence. This breed, dachshund, are famous for their
digging and hunting capabilities. Also, he had a very loud bark, enough to
scare a non dog lover. He used to guard the gate with all his might and wouldn’t
allow anyone to come in easily. I had to lock him up briefly before I could
even talk to the person at my door. Whenever I felt low, he would come and sit
with me and try to comfort me.
Beetle was a perfect apartment
dog and stayed with us for close to 15 years. We will miss him terribly and the
void cannot be filled by anyone else. I feel like I have lost someone very near
and dear. Hope he finds even more loving parents in his next life. You will
live with us in our memories, Beetle! Goodbye for now.
The death of over 150 children in Muzaffarpur, Bihar has shown us the real face of the Nitish government there. Although he has been ruling the roost since 2005, it is sad to see that the hospitals are not even equipped to provide basic medical facilities to the patients of AES (Acute Enchephalitis Syndrome). Don’t know how many more children will face the dead end. After this medical emergency, the Supreme Court has asked the Nitish government as well as the Centre to clarify why such a thing happened in first place. I am sure they don’t have any reasonable response to that. Remember that medical care is the basic right and such a thing is unacceptable under current situation.
AES supposedly happens by eating
unripe Litchi fruit by the already malnourished children. Who is responsible
for the health of these kids? I understand that basic healthcare comes before
education and should have been handled that way. Do the policies of the Nitish
government take into account such emergencies, people are asking. The hapless
parents have nowhere to go. They are just witnessing the saddest part of their
life, the death of their child. Is the government even thinking about some sort
of compensation for these parents, though nothing would be enough as of now.
Only time can heal such wounds, that too to a small extent.
The newspaper says that it is an
extraordinary situation. Well I don’t agree. There is nothing extraordinary
about it, it is just pathetic. Hope the whirlwind of deaths stop soon.
Was checking my e-mail and it came
as a rude shock that my Amazon Prime order has been converted to pay on
delivery. They didn’t provide any specific reason for it, though. The maid has
not turned up (she can have a headache too) and I am left wondering how to cope
up with that.
Hubby dear has got a new music
system installed in the car and he gladly takes us down for a demo of the same,
gadget lover that he is. We hop into the car and praise it liberally. Darling
daughter is busy with her own stuff, this being the last week to enjoy holidays
as it is back to school from July 1st. I casually pick up the
newspaper only to be bogged down by the horrible and unfortunate news of a depressed
teacher killing whole of his family as he and his wife were not keeping well.
Strange are the ways of the world…
I try to turn my mind to
something else and request Alexa to play some songs. Alexa promptly starts
playing my favourites. Definitely a mood booster, that is. And Alexa has her
moods too. When she doesn’t want, she will not turn on the lights. Does come up
with some or the other reason.
The pet dachshund is hard to
please these days and will do his own thing. Even in summers he seems to love
the sun and is found lying in the kitchen where the sun comes in. Old age has
Yesterday darling daughter came
back from swimming with a serious concern, “Mumma, why don’t these 3-4 year old
boys go and change in the men’s room?” I said that their mothers or helps must
be bringing them to the ladies room. “Yes mumma, but how come they have the
audacity to do that!!” My girl was sufficiently concerned and I had to say that
I will bring up the matter on the group. Women’s liberation jindabad!
They had been together for two
whole years, whether at the workplace or at home. They were totally inseparable.
Jai and Arshi were made for each other, but still could not gather courage to
tie the knot, even though they were living together. Jai had gone through a
tough time when his first marriage collapsed and he had vowed not to get into
the tangles of marriage again. Arshi knew this well and was okay with it. But
her clock was ticking. Even though they had successful careers, the thought of
a child lingered in Arshi’s mind. She wanted to feel complete, and it was
motherhood alone that could give her that feeling.
One day, while having lunch
together, Arshi did try to raise the question of ‘marriage for the sake of society’,
only to be snubbed by Jai. “Have we ever thought of society?” and “Do you have
time for marriage mumbo jumbo?” Arshi had no option but to remain quiet after
When Anand joined the office as a
manager, he won many hearts right away due to his witty nature. Incidentally,
he had to sit next to Arshi and soon after, her life was in for a change. Anand
made Arshi laugh and slowly he made his way into Arshi’s heart, only to learn
later that she was already taken. But he understood that something was wrong.
Jai and Arshi had lunch together
and did not allow any third person as a rule. But one day when Arshi asked Jai
if Anand can have lunch with them, he couldn’t say no. “I have to talk to Arshi. I have to put
things right.” But Arshi had already made her choice.