SPF: A Rough Draft

DSCF8715
Photo (c) Susan Spaulding

A Rough Draft

Words 200

“Well? Is it done?”

“Sort of. Whether it is well or otherwise is not for me to judge.”

“Very funny. So aren’t you going to show off?”

“Umm. Not sure whether it’s worth bragging about.”

“Come on! Are you digging for compliments?”

“From you?! Who hasn’t even looked at it once?”

“That’s a dig!”

“Haha. Very funny.”

“How does it feel to have finished the story you were working on for over two years?”

“Mostly drained.”

“That’s it?”

“So much more remains to be done!”

“You have a complete story! Go find a publisher and just rake in the moolah.”

“If only it were that easy!”

“Isn’t it?

“Before I can even think of contacting a publisher, I have to edit my novel.”

“Isn’t that the editor’s job?”

“Nope! He just draws red lines through manuscripts before throwing it in the trash.”

“Ouch!”

“Exactly. Ideally one should spend at least thrice the amount of time editing as writing.”

“Wow! You don’t like editing?”

“I do but despite the difficult subject, writing was so much fun.”

“How’s that possible?”

“It was possible thanks to all the people who kept me company through the tortuous paths and cheered me from the sidelines.”

***

A/N Sorry about that I simply couldn’t resist bragging in a (not so) roundabout way 😉 I finished Moonshine the story for which I began blogging (240 chapters!) and the reason I’ve been away – just in case any of you noticed 😛 A genuine and heartfelt thank you to all you alpha readers – silent and otherwise 🙏

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Susan Spaulding for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Just 4 Fun #87

IMG-20180509-WA0005

Now if only i could learn to be silent…but then again half my troubles would have been non-existent if i had spoken up in the first place. Darn it! To speak or not to speak is the question – any answers?

IMG-20180511-WA0004

I beg to differ I am neither old nor restless I just young and senseless. What about you? 😀

IMG-20180511-WA0005

Questions questions and no answers. Hmm well on second thoughts it could be a typo after all s and d are right next to each other on the keyboard 😛

 

IMG-20180511-WA0015Finally somebody got it right!

IMG-20180513-WA0015(1)

Mother’s day has just come and gone and this was a lovely piece as were a couple of others

IMG-20180513-WA0016

But my personal favorite was this one

IMG-20180513-WA0038

which just goes on and on and on 😀

IMG-20180509-WA0007

Hahahave a wonderful week and just want to stress none of this stuff is mine and I am just keeping the fun going – Cheers

Blooming Amaltas

The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge this week is about our place in the world. I decided to interpret it rather literally mostly because this is the right time (although not the right weather) to showcase my world. Temperatures are soaring and yesterday it was a sizzling 43o Celsius (109 o F) and like every summer my campus is on fire. Take a look.

20180512_103046Miles to ogle before I walk 😉

20180512_103121“It is with the intention of losing my way that I have descended on this path” Rabindranath Tagore

20180512_103215A dazzling and enchanting sight one that is quite difficult to tear ones eyes away from despite the blazing Sun.

20180512_102916I could look at this for hours and hours – from an air conditioned room of course 😉

Bane1The amaltas are perhaps not everyone’s cup of tea. This man wages a losing battle against the raining petals.

Bane2Show off 😉

20180509_174225While in school I used to draw the Sun rising from between the mountain peaks – this reminds me of that 😀

By the way, this is the view from my porch – now I’m showing off 😉 Just a couple of years more before we shift so may as well make the most of it!

Also linking to Becca’s Sunday Trees

Hope you enjoyed your stroll through my world – have a wonderful week 🙂

Just 4 Fun #86

IMG-20180213-WA0001

Well that’s an optimist speaking – if you speak to a pessimist, guess what he or she would say?

“Cheer up! The worst is yet to come” 😉

Moving on here are some wonderful definitions:-

IMG-20180219-WA0009

Which one is your favorite? Mine is the Nurse one 😀

IMG-20180407-WA0008

My question is why did he purchase one in the first place? Similarly I’m pretty sure he went after her in the first place… 😀

IMG-20180430-WA0034

Moral of the story: Be careful of what you ask for you may get it 😀

IMG-20180501-WA0014

I wonder where these cards are available….

I recently received a forwarded message on Workplace rules for a happy life credited to WHO. Although I couldn’t find it on their page I thought the suggestions were pretty neat and worth sharing

1. Trust no one but respect  everyone.
2. What happens in office, remains office. Never take office gossip home and vice versa.
3. Enter office on time, leave on time. Your desktop is not helping to improve your health.
4. Never make Relationships in the work place. It will always backfire.
5. Expect nothing. If somebody helps, feel thankful. If not, you will learn to know things on your own.
6. Never rush for a position. If you get promoted, congrats. If not, it doesn’t matter. You will always be remembered for your knowledge and politeness, not for your designation.
7. Never run behind office stuff. You have better things to do in life.
8. Avoid taking everything on your ego. Your salary matters. You are being paid. Use your assets to get happiness.
9. It doesn’t matter how people treat you. Be humble. You are not everyone’s cup of tea.
10. In the end nothing matters except family, friends, home, and Inner peace.
Actually, if you ask me, nothing matters except inner peace – so at the next Miss World/Universe contest let the winner be the one who wishes for inner peace instead of world peace 😀
IMG-20180501-WA0011
To receive good luck and happiness always, just share your joy and inner peace
IMG-20180221-WA0005
Happy Living and wish you all a wonderful week. Please note that none of this stuff is mine, I am just keeping the fun going 🙂

Grounded

A massive beauty for Becca’s Sunday Trees.The lady gives a perspective of size.

IMG-20180307-WA0000

“Trees are poems that the earth writes upon the sky, we fell them down and turn them into paper, that we may record our emptiness.” Khalil Gibran

When the Calling Calls

k-rawson
Photo (c) K Rawson

When the Calling Calls

Words 100

Skipping along the road of life she halted. Her eyes sparkled.

Don’t go down that road, they warned, it is a dead end.

Others said it was tricky treacherous path.

A one-way road to hell.

Quicksand that engulfs and suffocates you.

What rubbish! She tossed her mane and scoffed at the naysayers. You are such scaredy-cats and so darn negative.

We are realists, they claimed, and you but a babe in the woods. You know nothing of life, of sweat, blood, the struggle, the agony…

Perhaps, she laced her shoes, heaved her rucksack, but you can’t see what I can.

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and K Rawson for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Well did you see what I saw or was it too obscure? Do let me know!

 

Just 4 Fun #85

I am a bit late with my weekly fun post – been having too much on my own 😀

IMG-20180430-WA0001

A lovely message don’t you think? Let’s see what else I have for you this week but I have to confess my personal resources are dwindling. You think people are less into whatsapping than before? Or their quota is drying up? No way – actually most forwards these days are videos and I don’t even have time to see them all!

WA

A reality I’m afraid and there was one very entertaining video about a guy whose phone battery dies and he initiates a conversation with a lady about her teen and turns out she is his wife and the boy his son 😉

WAblindBut I can’t help wondering can they see the screen in such bright sunshine?

Heights of internet addiction….. 
At a funeral in church:
A visitor: What’s the WiFi password here? 
Priest: Respect the dead.
 
 
Visitor: All small letters?

 

***

IMG-20180417-WA0023

Err by swiping from left to right or right to left as the case may be 😀

IMG-20180417-WA0022

All batteries in the pocket 😀 Thankfully they didnt ask about the power cable 😉

IMG-20180417-WA0020

How many of you know what that brown thing is? Go on, dont be shy, raise your hands and type it out – bindaas 😀

 

IMG-20180308-WA0054

A couple of more works of anti-gravity art works

IMG-20180308-WA0049

Super cool eh?

Ending today’s belated offering with a couple of quick jokes.

I went to a restaurant. It was full; no place to sit…
I took out my mobile, placed it to my ear and said loudly – “Bhabhi come fast, he’s here with someone else…”
Sixteen couples ran away…
***
BBC organized (maybe BBC did or did not – just dont hang the messenger!) a contest where contestants were challenged to write something such that
Feelings of *suspense, curiosity, apprehension, peace, tranquility, anger, violence, anxiety, pleasantness and happiness* are expressed in one short sentence.
The winning entry:
*My wife is not talking*
Umm works just as well with the spouse reversed dont you think?
That’s all folks! Do let me know your favorite and thank you for visiting. And as usual none of this stuff is mine, I’m just keeping the fun going 🙂

As You Like It

For this week’s Sunday Trees I have a really bindaas one 😀

20180127_145913

Covered

from top to toe

They cry foul

As they do

when uncovered

turn

a deaf ear to

the unpleasable world

take a leaf

from me

dance

to your song

as you like

however

you like

Faith & Fury

mt-lemmon-with-tree
Photo (c) Jan Wayne Fields

Faith & Fury

Words 101

Khushiiii!” Heart in his mouth Arnav ran towards the edge.

Sweating and panting, bit-by-bit, he pulled her back and into his arms, for an infinitesimal second, before going on a verbal rampage. “What the hell Khushi! Can’t you do anything right? What if something had happened dammit?”

“But nothing happened!” Khushi inspected her scraped arms. “In any case, it’s all Devi Maiyya’s* wish. If She wants me who am I to fight Her?”

Arnav’s face grew blacker.

Khushi held out her hand. “Help me.”

“Ask your precious Devi Maiyya.” He snapped.

“I did.” Khushi twinkled. “She told me to ask you.”

***

*Devi Maiyya: Mother Goddess

Side note: Just a snapshot of my favorite couple Khushi and Arnav. I didn’t mean to write about them (100 words is not enough) but they have a habit of inveigling themselves and not letting go – apologies if it didn’t make much sense.

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Jan Wayne Fields for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

 

WPC: Life Lines

The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge this week is Lines. And guess what suddenly all I can see are lines 😀 I had to draw a line at the number of photos I dumped on unsuspecting visitors 😉

Let’s start on a high note okay?

20180420_202221Lines of wine bottles and delicacies to soothe the sugar cravings

20180418_200814Night lights and lines in a typical Indian Metro city. Any guesses as to exactly which city? Nope not Mumbai or Delhi 😉

20180421_154439

Petals lined up in a neat circular pattern. That reminds me, enough of interiors! Let’s get hot and dirty.

20180317_110050

The bare branched of the Plumeria or the Frangipani trees draw intricate lines in the hot summer sun.

 

20180413_065405One such tree though not of the trees which whiled away the time drawing lines 😉 This one is busy shooting lines at impossible angles that are in the process of being smothered by a green rash 😀

20180427_175602

These Canna leaves have such interesting lines and am enjoying watching them blossom and grow with each watering.

20180425_065002This caladium leaf could easily be mistaken for playing host to a giant pink spider. Don’t you think so too?

20180425_065142

Not just in life but in death too the leaves leave messages for us. What do you think it’s trying to say?

 

20180425_065132

I think it is saying C you Soon 🙂

Have a wonderful weekend unmarred by any lines on your brow 😀

SPF: Life Notes

157-05-may-22nd-2016

Life Notes

Words 200

“Cheers!” They clinked glasses of preferred poisons.

“When did we last meet?” Priya asked.

“Rhea’s wedding.” Molly winked at Priya as she raised her glass in a toast to Rhea. “So Rhea, did our advice help?”

They giggled at her blank look.

“The birds and the bees.” Priya prodded.

“Oh please!” Rhea smacked her forehead. “Couldn’t you girls have given me some better advice?”

“Like what?”

“Like how disastrous it is to have a joint bank account with your spouse.” Rhea shuddered. “If only someone had told me to keep our accounts separate.”

“Money sweeter than honey.” Molly giggled.

Priya poked Molly. “What would you have done differently?”

“I would’ve prayed harder for my children to ignore me.”

They stared.

“When my children left home and promptly forgot about me, I was devastated.” Molly said. “After several tragedies, broken hearts and late night calls I realized the harsh fact of life.” She grinned. “If your loved ones don’t miss you, they are in a happy place.”

“Your turn.” They looked at Priya.

“I would’ve stayed connected.” Priya looked at them. “I would’ve stolen some time for my friends.” She swallowed. “Invested more in myself, my constant and often only companion.”

***

This photo prompt was one of my earliest (second or perhaps the third) attempts at flash fiction. You can read it here if you wish and let me know which one you prefer – if at all!

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Just 4 Fun #84

IMG-20180420-WA0014

Don’t forget to pack it no matter where you go and even more importantly keep it handy – like your mobile.

Chained

Hmm not exactly what I was trying to portray, anyway

IMG-20180422-WA0013

Yeah this is more like it 😀

Err how about an ice cream or two?

IMG-20180421-WA0024

This one was too good to pass up 😀

IMG-20180420-WA0024

Very creative dont you think? I just wish I had known about this a week ago – while attending a one week intensive workshop on how to save the world. Or something like that 😉

Before I sign off with these pearls collected from the internet and forwarded messages (i.e. none of these are mine) here’s a notice which may be of interest to at least some of you 😉

SUMMER CAMP FOR MEN
Evening classes for men. Starting this month!
Summer camp 
Note: due to the complexity and level of difficulty of these contents, each course will accept a maximum of eight participants each.
Topic 1
How to fill ice-cube trays and why to fill water bottles before putting them back in the fridge.
Step by step with slide presentation.
Topic 2
Differences between the laundry basket and the floor.
Pictures and explanatory graphics.
Topic 3
Learning how to find things, starting with looking in the right place instead of turning the house upside down while screaming.
Open forum.
Topic 4
Health watch: bringing her flowers is not harmful to your health.
Graphics and audio tape.
Topic 5
Real men ask for directions when lost.
Real-life testimonials.
Topic 6
Is it genetically impossible to sit quietly while SHE drives?
Driving simulation.
Topic 7
Learning to live: basic differences between mother and wife.
Topic 8
How to be the ideal shopping companion.
Relaxation exercises, meditation and breathing techniques.
Topic 9
How to fight cerebral atrophy: remembering birthdays, anniversaries, other important dates and informing when you’re going to be late.
Admissions are open. 
Which one do you think is most important or any that may have been missed?
Oh wait! One final tip…
IMG-20180420-WA0006

View From the Top

This week, I have this really tall one for Becca’s Sunday Trees

20180125_145850

the young uns

rustle and strain

eager to also

brush shoulders

with the sky

 

buffeted by winds

engulfed

in icy silence

bare branches

send a whisper

on a leaf

 

the sky

is just as far

from here

as from there

 

it is not about

how high you are

it is about how

deep you are.

Another Dead End

photoa

Another Dead End

Words 101

“I hate them! I’m never going back again.” She smashed a cup.

Granny continued rocking.

“I don’t matter, only society matters. Just because Rahul’s poor….”

“…Unemployed.” Granny cut in. “Just think! No money. No roof.”

“I… we’ll stay with you Dadi. You’re lonely.”

“I don’t mind. Not now. Would Rahul like to stay so far away…? ”

“…. He would! He can draw and paint in peace.”

“And you?”

“I’ll be with him.” She giggled. “Whispering sweet nothings.”

“What’ll you eat?”

“Whatever you cook.”

“I don’t cook anymore.”

“Why not?”

Granny gave a cackle and vanished in a puff of smoke.

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Yarnspinner for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Just 4 Fun #83

IMG-20180313-WA0019

Warm bright colors of spring and the coming summer season 😀 And today I bring some minion (among other) fun – for some strange reason (and much to my frustration) I have been unable to access Pinterest from my home internet. But today since I am traveling things are better and here are a few of my favorites. Hope you enjoy 🙂

 

2017-12-11.png (436×468) - funny minion memes, funny minion quotes, Funny Quote... - funny minion memes, funny minion quotes, Funny Quote, Minion Quote, Quotes - Minion-Quotes.com

Hhahah aint that true 😀

 

Today 20 Best Minion Quotes

It does work and even better if you work out along with it. Trust me!

Rackarungar: DIY

Ins’t that right? Now she not only has to keep track of her glass slippers, the kitchen cinders but his socks too! Ahh well such is life.

Minions

Fellow nillionaires raise your hands!

 

.

And I am frequently surprised 😀

Bored not hungry!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!..........

But it’s not shutting up. I really am starving and I need to go on a diet. Any suggestions?

Great idea. 🙂  Thanks……hey!!!!!

BEST LIFE QUOTES    If you obey all the rules you miss all the fun

So true and the worse part is I just got to know it! So many rules to break and so little time…

 

Albuquerque Funny Minions (09:20:38 PM, Friday 17, June 2016 PDT) – 20 pics... - 092038, 17, 20, 2016, Albuquerque, Friday, Funny, Funny Minion Quote, funny minion quotes, June, Minions, PDT, pics, PM - Minion-Quotes.com

I am not particularly fond of cocktails so perhaps the laptop and wifi?

Minions

Now I know!

Today 20 Best Minion Quotes

Unless I have been sitting for too long then even they dont fit – yeah I am at that age.

I could go on and on but I am sure you have loads to do – have a wonderful week! And as usual none of this stuff is mine and is all borrowed from the internet.

Do let me now your favorite one!

Hark! She Speaks

This week for Becca’s Sunday Trees I bring one that has probably witnessed history that continues to hold significance today – from the precincts of the famous Chittor fort. I have previously shared several visuals from this place earlier as well but this particular tree overlooks the Sati sthal on one side and Jauhar kund on the other. I could not bear to take photos of the place where women burnt themselves along with the dead bodies of their husbands or jumped into it for fear of rape and slavery by plunderers and victors of wars.

20180126_130154

Hark! She Speaks

I can tell you

tales of brave

helpless women

Sending off their men

to wage battles

of honor and pride

Fasting and praying

for his victory

and

his long life

They were but

One soul,

one body.

If he died, she would

burn with him

if he lost, it was Jauhar,

for her

and her children

As the spoils of war

it behooved her

to embrace death

to protect her

dignity and honor

and

save them

the dishonor

of failing to protecting her.

Times have changed

The world has progressed

They educate her

indulge her

pamper her and

cheer for her as she shatters

One glass ceiling after another

But under the sheen

lurks a beast

that seeks to

subjugate her with

attitudes and mentalities

that are passed off

as our culture and

sanskriti

All said and done

it is still her duty

to uphold their honor

And his right to defile hers

it is her duty to bear it silently

to shield their bestiality

so that they can continue to

hold up their heads in society

She is still blamed

and shamed

Be silent

Or be silenced

remains the

unsaid mantra

Since the beginning of time

they have

hacked my branches

stripped me bare

And with cruel knives

carved out love notes

on my body

over and over

again

but did I die?

Did I hide nakedness?

Did I hide my face?

Why do you?

 

Silent

unyielding

unflinching

unapologetic

existence

is my DNA

 

What is yours?

 

SPF: You’ve Got Mail

 march-31st-20131

You’ve Got Mail

Words 202

Five-thirty! All of a sudden Rhea was energized. Her day at the office had ended. She couldn’t wait to get home and switch to her Rheal personality. Technically a copyeditor but relegated to proofreading, she had found succor in her secret alternate universe.

Scifi world here I come her heart sang as the whole weekend stretched before her. Quickly grabbing her weekly essentials so that she wasn’t forced to move out for supplies she let herself into her apartment. Shedding her baggage, kicking off her heels, plugging the kettle, she pulled open her laptop.

The notification button glowed like a welcoming beacon. Yes! Her blog was finally making waves. The act of writing itself was cathartic and fulfilling yet it was lonely. For fear of ridicule she hadn’t shared her newfound passion with her fellow beings and she was resigned to being unnoticed and unread.

But things were changing. Random page views blossomed to a like here and there. And even (gasp) a comment or two. Gerkle was a particular fan. Obviously a fake name but where on earth was Zeutron?

Hi! Could you tell Zoe on Earth that her Dave’s fine? We could arrange a one-way trip for her and you.

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

This story is a sort of a continuation of a previous flash 😀

Any fans of IPK but more importantly readers of Silver Streaks? Here's a little weekend gift - hope you like.

Strained

dales-symphony-2
Photo (c) Dale Rogerson

 

Strained

Words 101

“Well what story do you have today?”

“Nothing,” I sighed.

“Are you dead?”

“No!” I protested. “I just don’t have a story to tell.”

“May as well be dead.”

“True.” I was equally despondent.

“But you can’t die before you’re dead can you?”

“I guess not.”

“Then you have to have a story. Look around. Surely something speaks to you?”

“It does,” I ventured hesitantly, “but the ideas are all so nebulous and…”

“Well hurry up and catch one idea at least!”

“I wish I could!” I groaned in despair. “But….”

“But what?”

“The holes in the sieves are too large.”

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a s story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting this challenge and to Dale for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Okay Fine! I plead guilty. If this makes sense, do let me know I shall let myself out of the loony bin.

 

On a Trip of her Own

20180125_115527
When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds; your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.

Patanjali (c. 1st to 3rd century BC)

 

Linked to Becca’s Sunday Trees

Just 4 Fun # 82

IMG-20180316-WA0000

Let’s begin with some general knowledge Q & A. Don’t worry it is the world’s easiest quiz 😉
1) How long did the Hundred Years’ War last?
2) Which country makes Panama hats?
3) From which animal do we get cat gut?
4) In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution?
5) What is a camel’s hair brush made of?
6) The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal?
7) What was King George VI’s first name?
8) What color is a purple finch?
9) Where are Chinese gooseberries from?
10) What is the color of the black box in a commercial airplane?
Jotted down your answers? Great! Now match them with the answers at the end of the post.
IMG-20180405-WA0011
Well how much do you respect her? 😉
After a medical exam and considering my age, my tendency to falter and trip, the doctor advised me to install a bar in the bathroom for support. Taking no chances I had one installed promptly
IMG-20180408-WA0016
Hic hic 😀
IMG-20180404-WA0006
Err do you? 😉
IMG-20180327-WA0011.jpg
As a child, Dennis the Menace was my favorite cartoon character 😀 Then I graduated to Calvin and Asterix. What about you?
Image result for dennis the menace
Image result for dennis the menace
This one is the best of the lot, isn’t it? Time for answers to the world’s easiest quiz
1) How long did the Hundred Years War last? : 116 years
2) Which country makes Panama hats? : Eucador
3) From which animal do we get cat gut? : Sheep and Horses
4) In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution? : November
5) What is a camel’s hair brush made of? : Squirrel fur
6) The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal? : Dogs
7) What was King George VI’s first name? : Albert
8) What color is a purple finch? : Crimson
9) Where are Chinese gooseberries from? : New Zealand
10) What is the color of the black box in a commercial airplane? : Orange (of course!)
Well how many did you get correctly? Do let us know. Thanks for visiting and as usual none of this stuff is mine but borrowed from all friends and family who shared it.

Brothers in Arms

stock photo, family, sibling, home, funny, kids, rivalry, patenthood

Photo from here

 

Brothers in Arms

Words 250

The only girl among three boys, I was mercilessly ragged and teased.

Their one stop entertainment channel.

Their unpaid servant.

Make me an omelet, one would say.

Coffee for me, another said.

Why me? Why always me? Make it yourself. I stamped my foot and threw a tantrum.

“Fine, I am off to tell Ma, that you went bike riding with…”

Okay fine! Thwarted, I stomp off in impotent fury. They double up laughing. I shake my fist at them. They laugh even harder.

I grow older, taller, and prettier. Besotted, I stare at myself – Mirror Mirror on the wall…

Snickers and muffled gasps from the window still haunt me. “Oooh isn’t she pretty – for a donkey?”

Skirt flying, I chase them around the neighborhood.

Mother catches me and thrashes me.

“Did you hear the poor lil donkey go heehaw heehaw?” They rub salt on my wounds.

They make me buy cricket gear with my Rakhi money. In return they allow me to fetch and hunt the ball from the undergrowth.

School and college bring distances and greener pastures.

I move on with my man, the love and light of my life.

All too soon, he showers me with curses, kicks and punches.

Sporting a black eye, I decline to go home for Rakhi.

I couldn’t face the boys’ howls of laughter.

They landed up to get their pound of flesh.

They whisked me back home even as he lay trussed up in a hospital bed.

***

Rakhi: An Indian annual festival wherein sisters of all ages tie a Rakhi (a decorative string) around the wrists of their brothers, while praying for his health and protection from all evil/mishaps. She in turn receives a gift from them and a promise to take the responsibility of her well-being.

 

 

SPF: Where Ever You Go

227-04-april-1st-2018

Where Ever You Go

Words 201

“Got your tickets? Your ID, your…?” I fussed.

“Relax Mom! That’s the nth time you asked me that.”

“But I didn’t see you check anything even once!” I flared up.

“I have it with me.” He patted his pocket. “It’s not going to disappear…”

“You could check it just to humor me.” I was resentful.

“Like I could not go just to humor you?”

Hurt, I stared at him. “I never told you not to go!”

“Maybe not in so many words,” he admitted, “but your dark dire predictions…”

“I didn’t mean to discourage you.” I was stiff. “I was just trying to prepare you…”

“By scaring the life out of me?”

I looked around the room. “Doesn’t look like it.” I sniffed.

“Would you have been happy if I was?”

Ashamed I shook my head.

“Aww Mom,” He put his arm around me. “Don’t worry so much. Remember how worried you were when I went to boarding school?”

“I wasn’t worried then!” I protested. “I knew what was going to happen, where you were going, what you were going to eat, but now…”

“Even now you’ll know Mom. They’ve promised to do a live telecast of our life on Mars.”

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

The Joy of Little Things

For a long time now, perhaps since 2005 that I have begun to click pics with my phone. Yes, you guessed right, of trees 😀 They had begun to work their magic on me and I just had to capture them, keep them with me so to speak.  I often wished I had someway of documenting them, cataloguing them so that I could browse at leisure. Just a pipe dream, a waste of time. Time passed, I focused on home, career, academics until fan fiction happened. Blogging was the next logical step for my stories and yet some guiding prescient hand named my blog Stories and more.

And now after two years, the more bit often gives me greater happiness than the stories 😀 Anyhow to cut a long story short, this week I target two of my favorite photo challenges – Cee’s Happy themed fun foto challenge and the Daily Post’s Smile challenge. Let’s see if I can spark a bit of happiness and bring a smile to your face with my selection:

20160617_142550Good food can bring back the spark to the dullest of days and lives doesn’t it? Like my son declared some years ago “It’s almost impossible to be angry on a full stomach.” Since then I have noticed, it is harder to be upset after food – the next time someone at home is cranky you know what to do right? 😉

Boating
Photo courtesy nephew

Then there’s nothing like some precious chillax time with friends while riding out the upheavals of academic pressures and life in general. This is one of those times when nothing matters but now 🙂

Anda7A beautiful sunset at the end of a less than idyllic day. A new day awaits and hope surges things can only be better.

Pondy beach

You are just fooling around, clueless and untrained – something clicks and you have the near perfect shot, good enough to please even your own nitpicking self. The wonder of learning something new can give quite an unparalleled high, don’t you think?

20180127_122248

When a little boy shows off his Tarzanic genes 😀

20180127_123003While his elders (and little girls!) prefer to take the more sedate route and dress up like their ancestors did.

 

20180125_145609

Then there are other things that are guaranteed to bring a smile to my heart – chancing upon the white blossoms (or are they leaves?) of an unknown tree

DSC00382A prefect green circle in the midst of a chaotic entangled bushy jungle

20180126_121120When life clings on and persists in the unlikeliest of places.

IMG-20170801-WA0003
Photos courtesy the niece in Nice err Lyon

How the internet allows us to be there while sitting here – be it at the fag end of a day

IMG-20170801-WA0004

or the beginning of a new day.

IMG-20180221-WA0020Of trees that perk up after long cold dreary overcast days and engage in a bit of arm wrestling under a perfect and gorgeously blue sky – from all the way from Dublin, Ireland.

 

ToysDo you find joy and happiness in the little things of life? Did anything here make you smile? Do let me know!

But before I go, just in case these pics didn’t strike a chord, I must share this little piece to make up for taking up so much of your time:

“No sight so sad as that of a naughty child,” he began, “especially a naughty little girl. Do you know where the wicked go after death?”

“They go to hell,” was my ready and orthodox answer.

“And what is hell? Can you tell me that?”

“A pit full of fire.”

“And should you like to fall into that pit, and to be burning there for ever?”

“No, sir.”

“What must you do to avoid it?”

I deliberated a moment: my answer, when it did come was objectionable: “I must keep in good health and not die.”                                                       ― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

May you all keep in good health and not die – at least not a moment before one has to!

Life and Death

As I come out of my shell and explore my surroundings I can’t help but notice a unique seasonal feature around these parts. Spring and fall seem to coexist. Leaves carpet the roads and mounds of leaves dot the sides of the roads until they are carted off to their final resting place. And yet gardens are abloom with a riot of colors – pink purple yellow and magenta. The peepal tree outside my office is a case in point. It is almost bare with a few green leaves determinedly hanging on until they turn yellow and reluctantly make their way down to whence they grew to such dizzying heights. And yet whilst this tussle is on, a new unruly batch has already sprung up gung-ho and eager to make their mark in this world. I have been feeling too inhibited to click this particule tree but I did mix and match some photos in an earlier post – Peepal in Spring.

For this post I have captured a few contrasting images from the world around me. Come scroll with me…

20180331_102923Clutching at straws

20180330_101305Brilliant and defiant in death.

20180330_101433Life towers over and mocks at death – it is not for me!

20180330_101500Yet some die before their time

20180330_101451While others bloom despite all odds

20180401_081112Even when there appears to be no hope or escape

20180401_082956

Only when we accept that ups and downs, life and death will happen can we move on and live life as she deserves to be led – wholly completely, entirely and unabashedly.

Wish you all a wonderful day.

The Journey Within

I missed Becca’s Sunday Trees but here I am on Tuesday. Have a wonderful day people!

20171104_085404

Skipping along the dirt road

she stopped to

stare and ponder

Poor old tree

No respite

No escape

Imprisoned

Forever and ever

The tree swayed with gentle laughter

A single curled leaf

Twirled its way down upon her head

Little one

Not all journeys are without

If you would

but look within

Just 4 Fun # 81

IMG-20180401-WA0008.jpg

And the heat, and dust and pollen 😉 Sorry have been reeling under a bout of allergic rhinitis. Oh well this too shall pass – especially if we have some fun right?

IMG-20180308-WA0048

Let’s start with a couple of more amazing works of art that are gravity defying. Well almost.

IMG-20180308-WA0056I can’t help but wonder what is supporting which. Err is that correct English?

IMG-20180308-WA0059No wonder they say a lot can happen over coffee 😉

IMG-20180401-WA0009.jpg

 

Time for a quick puzzle.Go on this is a easy one – no fancy tricks.

IMG-20180327-WA0012.jpg

This one reminds me of a joke I had read long ago in the Reader’s Digest. A couple have a fight, arguing shouting, the works followed by silence. You know the drill right? 😉 Anyway after a couple of days, the husband comes up to the wife and says “Have seen my grey shirt?”

She is furious. “What? How dare you?”

Poor guy is completely clueless. “What?”

She snorted. “Dont tell me you didnt notice we arent talking and here you come cool as cucumber asking about your damn shirt!”

“Oh!” He exclaimed. “I thought we were getting along.”

We had a lovely restful long weekend – did you? 😉

IMG-20180330-WA0008.jpg

I just loved this one!

IMG-20180329-WA0012.jpg

Anything to remain interesting 😀

IMG-20180326-WA0007.jpg

I guess it is time for me to go! Have a wonderful week and do let me know if you solve the puzzle and even if you dont. 😉

As usual none of this stuff is mine – all borrowed from all over the world wide web 😀

 

Friends Forever

fatima-fakier-deria-3
Photo (c) Fatima Fakier Deria

Friends Forever

Words 101

“Here comes Her Highness.” Trishna muttered as Sapna floated down to join them.

Sapna stuck out her tongue.

“Enjoy your last day as Queen,” Prakriti said maliciously.

“Excuse me?” Sapna frowned.

“Maya’s coming.” Trishna burst out. “With fresh gossip.”

Sapna flickered and then rallied. “She must be ancient!”

“Remember how vain she was of her looks?” Layla’s husky murmur was still a killer.

“A bad hair day saved her from the car crash.” Leena rued.

“I wonder if she has any hair left?” Trishna patted her flowing tresses.

“I can’t wait to see her as a doddering ghost.” Sapna said gleefully.

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Fatima Fakier Deria for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

PS. Any readers of Silver Streaks here? Or fans of IPK? This may be of interest to you (or at least I am hoping it will be!) 😉

SPF: A Letterbomb

226-03-march-25th-2018

A Letterbomb

Words 200

Dear Mom,

I am going away. Far away. You won’t have to wake up early, send me to school, or pack my lunch. You’ll be free. Don’t bother looking for me. I am going to another planet – Zeutron, my home planet.

Didn’t Dad always say I was good-for-nothing trash? Turns out that I fell out from the spaceship hovering over Earth into the garbage dump. They’ve been searching for me ever since. After all, I am the Prince and heir to Zeutron. My parents, real parents were so desperate to find me that they stationed one of their best undercover agents (better than 007!) on Earth with orders to find me or die here.

You remember the guard at the mall? He’s not human. He’s a Zeutronian and his name is Gerkle. He recognized me right away, but he had to play his cards well so as to gain my trust. He told me everything once we became friends. We are leaving on the spaceship that arrives tonight. I’m not taking anything along except for a photo of you and me. Maybe you can come and visit me sometime. To see how I am doing.

Lots of love

Dan

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Just 4 Fun # 80

IMG-20180308-WA0002

Why wait for a new day? Every moment is a chance to change your life 🙂 So what do I have for you this week? Hmm let me see. How about some aphorisms?

Aphorism is a statement of truth or opinion expressed in a concise and witty manner.

1. I read that 4,153,237 people got married last year. Not to cause any trouble….but shouldn’t that be an even number?

2. I find it ironic that the colors red, white and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

3. Relationships are a lot like algebra. Have you ever looked at your X and wondered Y?

4. You know that tingly little feeling you get when you love someone? That’s common sense leaving your body

5. My therapist says I have a preoccupation with vengeance. We’ll see about that!

6. I think my neighbor is stalking me as she’s been Googling my name on her computer. I saw it through my telescope last night.

7. Money talks … but all mine ever says is good-bye.

8. You’re not fat, you’re just easier to see.

9. If you think nobody cares whether you’re alive, try missing a couple of payments.

10. Money can’t buy happiness, but it keeps the kids in touch!

So which one is your favorite? I think mine is about love and that tingly feeling 😀 Anyway moving on, some amazing art works

IMG-20180308-WA0045

Just look at the detailing and how gravity defying they seem to be

IMG-20180308-WA0052Are they even touching?

IMG-20180308-WA0053We do this all the time – defy overwhelming forces, break free of suffocating pressures and wear a smile to office but how are these inanimate sculptures doing it?

IMG-20180308-WA0058

This one is my favorite and I can identify with it too – half the time I am elsewhere. What about you?

Love

Not difficult to imagine at all right? Although the gender could be as per your choice 😉

phonepocketI think she got a bit confused as to put what where 😀

Sharp

So how sharp are you? 😉

TOTD

Just like I don’t working out because that means I will have to give up on my blogging time. Any tips on how to manage both?

That’s it from me this week and as usual everything is borrowed stuff  – hope you enjoyed. Do let me know your favorite. Thanks.

Peepal in Spring

The Peepal tree or the Ficus religiosa (sacred fig) is a common tree and I seem to see one no matter where I go. Except when I want to photograph one 😦

But this time I got lucky or rather created a bit with some mix and match 😉

20180307_110441.jpg

Can you see the massive windblown and rather harassed looking tree in the background? That was taken just under 3 weeks ago.

20180325_094029.jpgAnd look at it now – it is as if it had never been bare.

20180324_100346.jpgI also managed to snap some lovely fresh colorful leaves growing at the roots of a massive dour staid Peepal 😀

And one more, simply because I couldn’t resist – purple leaves too! And to think I spent all my life around them. What on earth have I been doing all these years?!!!

20180324_100352.jpg

Sometimes,

a cleansing wash

is not enough

and one must

shed the old

and

start anew

 

WPS: Into the Maelstrom

Screen Shot 2018-03-25 at 8.49.48 AM

Photo from Google Maps

Into the Maelstrom

Words 151

“Exams over?”

She gave an ecstatic twirl. “I am free!”

“Free?” I queried. “But what about admissions, career…”

“None of that nonsense for me,” she dismissed with her nose in the air. “I have my future all planned.”

“Let’s hear it.”

“First college for some graduation course…”

“Which course?”

“Whatever I qualify for.”

“Okay. Next?”

“Prince Charming will find me and sweep me off my feet. I will lead him to a merry dance, before agreeing to marry him.”

“Wow.”

She smiled dreamily. “A stupendous destination wedding with both Shah Rukh and Salman Khan dancing and then go abroad for our honeymoon.”

“Where abroad?”

“Anywhere! The States to do lots of shopping.” She giggled. “Visit all the famous tourist spots, go trekking, camping, just him and me.” She clasped her hands. “It will be the most romantic time ever.”

“Nice.” I said. “And then what?

“I haven’t thought further than that.”

***

Written for What Pegman Saw – a story in 150 words or less based on locations chosen from Google Maps. This week we are off to Yellowstone National Park in the US and on my bucket list. Thanks to K Rawson for hosting the challenge. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

Enough of Double Standards

bjc3b6rn-9
Photo (c) Bjorn Rudberg

 

Enough of Double Standards

Words 100

“Belated happy birthday!” Shipra greeted Deeksha.

“Thanks.”

“How did you celebrate?”

“We didn’t. We are still in mourning.”

“Oh I am sorry.” Shipra offered her condolences. “Last year too you couldn’t celebrate as your father-in-law was unwell.”

“Yes.”

“It must be over six months since he passed away?”

“Yes.”

“Yet your husband attended his cousin’s wedding last week?”

“It wouldn’t have looked nice if he hadn’t gone.”

“So only you’re expected to mourn?”

“That depends.” Deeksha said. “As I am integral part of their family, they made sure I participated actively in the wedding festivities soon after my father’s death.”

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Bjorn for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

SPF: Blast From the Past

225-03-march-18th-2018

Blast from the Past

Words 199

“Aren’t you too young to be a face-reader?” Madhulika looked her up and down.

“It’s a gift.” Tuhina said.

“But to give you a booth at the event, I’ll need some proof of your talent.”

I know what you did Muddy.”

Madhulika gasped. “Wha…what do you mean?”

Don’t you remember your friend, Muddy?” Tuhina shook her hair free and leaned forward.

There was a crash. “Vrinda’s dead and you…you…”

“…I possessed Tuhina,” the voice was cold and unemotional, “and set out to avenge myself.”

“It wasn’t me, I swear it wasn’t!” Madhulika edged towards the door.

A hollow laugh echoed. “Still lying Muddy?”

“It was Shail. It was his idea to kill you…”

And my unborn child.”

“Child!” Madhulika was stuttering. “I…I don’t know…”

Shail knew. And if he knew…”

“Don’t kill me please!” Madhulika begged.

I wouldn’t do anything so passé Muddy.” She bared her teeth. “I’ll just have some fun.”

“Fun?” Madhulika quavered.

Shail has a new girlfriend. They are plotting a murder.”

“Vrinda!

But she was gone.

.

.

“What have you been up to?”

“Nothing.” Tuhina grinned at her mother. “Just settling some old scores.” She fingered the scar on Vrinda’s neck like she had since childhood.

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction  – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for the photo prompt and hosting the challenge. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

CB&W: The Bike Challenge

Okay so this week for the black and white challenge, Cee wants bikes or anything related to two wheels. Initially I thought I had only two photos but rifling through my archives I was surprised to find how many bikes had crept in without my knowledge! Good for me and them 😀

BikeYSA surreptitiously taken photo of the fascinating insides of a bike in a busy marketplace.

CycleThe good old bicycle, the lifeline for many. I used to love cycling as a child and often wish I could cycle now as well, but I feel shy and embarrassed.

BnglreThis one I have shared before, perhaps some of you remember. Quite an eye-catcher right?

Bnglre2A front view with minimal color. Which one do you prefer?

CamelBOn the streets of Udaipur, while admiring a camel with its nose in the air.

CamelB2The car and bike halt deferentially as the camel made its way sedately across the highway 😉

HaldighatiA bike parked near a distillation flask used to prepare rose essence.

Cubbon

Two bikes near a massive gulmohar tree (at least the leaves look like that). The creepy roots are fascinating aren’t they? Oops I forgot the bikes were supposed to be the focus!

Cubbon2Hmm not sure if those are the same bikes as in the previous pic. But the tree is definitely different – such character don’t you think? I’m fascinated by how trees don’t seem to have any requirement to follow rules. Anything goes and each to her own is their mantra. Yet each is particular and conscientious about fulfilling their CSR (corporate social responsibility) for the less fortunate. By just being, they replenish the oxygen in the air – isnt that amazing?

Tree Cheers to them.

Thanks for visiting and have a wonderful week.

 

Just 4 Fun # 79

GM

Apologies for missing out on just for fun last week and (almost) this week as well. Just some cool pics thoughts and quirky pieces from all over the world – hope you like.

BlocksairWould you stand under that?

HouseairI wouldn’t mind living up there!

Fash

Hmm who inspired who? 😛

Fash2

Can she see through that? That reminds me, there was a news item of a break-in into a store by a man wearing a see-through plastic head cover. Needless to say the CCTV had no trouble capturing his fine features 😀

Weight

In this world where everyone is out to squash you, you can either

Givein

Give in or

ResistWhat’s your choice?

StrengthResist, defy and just be

WD1

A couple of my favorite Women’s Day greetings 😉

 

WD2

And therein lies the whole crux of the matter

Wedded

When two pieces of rocks misfit people are bound together in marriage, that’s how it is.

WhyWhy?

Pretty much the words to any real friend I ever had. & some family :)

Look forward to that day 😀 Have a great week and as usual none of the stuff is mine and all credit and kudos to the artists who created these.

 

Different Shades

I missed Sunday Trees last week as I was busy with shifting (but I did post lots of trees (and leaves) but I’m back this week with a couple of photos of the same tree one early morning and the other a bit later in the day. Have a look.

20180125_092430Looks like night doesnt it? But trust me, the sun was right behind the tree allowing me to block it even if for a little while. The tree caught my eye for two reasons – the lighting and the funny bushy stumps/arms. And of course it was tall and being an Eucalyptus tree it reminded me of home. But yet the leaves seemed different and not so long and pointy. So which one do you prefer? Me? I still haven’t made up my mind 😀

20180125_092911

Do you see

how well you see

and what you see

is subject to which

side you are

WPC: St. Patrick’s Day

The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo challenge is I’d Rather Be…but of course blogging! After a hectic two, nearly three weeks of shifting, sifting and sorting I got my day to do what I enjoy most. But to be honest I am still rather exhausted and all frazzled with my thoughts on a million different corners. Providentially, I got a bunch of lovely snaps of the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in Dublin from my sister and brother-in-law who are currently staying there. So I didn’t have to travel, hunt or work too hard to join the fun. I am hoping you will like the photos too.

IMG-20180317-WA0044

St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. He was a Christian missionary credited with taking Christianity to Ireland.

IMG-20180317-WA0035St. Patrick died on March 17, 461 and this day is celebrated the Roman Catholic feast day of the patron saint of Ireland.

IMG-20180317-WA0043It is also a celebration of Irish culture.

IMG-20180317-WA0042Bright and colorful aren’t they?

IMG-20180317-WA0045It was freezing cold and my sister caught a cold despite being wrapped in layers. But you wouldn’t be able to make that out looking at these young girls would you?

IMG-20180317-WA0037I thought this little boy was the best – what about you? It is also a custom to wear green on St. Patrick’s day. Apparently wearing green made one invisible to leprechauns, fairy creatures who would pinch anyone not wearing green. And those who don’t wear green do get pinched!

Thanks for visiting – all info from Google.

I think this post would also perfectly fit the #QOGUIN series. What you think?

#QOGUIN Series

Hello and welcome to my new venture – #QOGUIN Series.

Puzzled? Curious? Interested? Intrigued? Well I hope so! Anyway here’s the thing, while shifting houses I seem have to misplaced my muse. Probably off on a vacation which I deserve – but then there’s no rest for the wicked. And since I cannot seem to stay away from blogging either so I hit upon a compromise. I can finally hatch an idea that I have been incubating for quite some time – share some Quirky Odd Good Ugly Intriguing News from all over the world. Perhaps some stuff thrown in from around my tiny world as well.

So, are you game?

I’m not sure if it is going to be a weekly, monthly or even a regular feature. Ahh well we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it right? Hey, here’s an idea? Why don’t you join in? Surely you have something non-fictional to share? Just make a post and drop your link here whenever you’re ready – no rush, no rules. And to prove that I would like to make an earlier post A Salute to the Wall as the first in the series 😀 And all the other positive news that I may have posted earlier, will hunt them out and list them in a dedicated Page.

Today’s article for this series is on underage driving which, as most of us are aware more often than not lead to disastrous consequences. Children, especially in certain Indian Metros are notorious for going off on jaunts, motor racing and stunts late at night and are a danger not only to themselves but also the others. Fed up with repeated unfortunate and countless such incidents, in 2015 the traffic police in Bengaluru threatened to imprison and confiscate driving licenses of parents of underage children caught driving. In fact, scores of parents were booked. But they got off after paying a fine. Finally last month, the Hyderabad police cracked down on errant parents and arrested 69 such irresponsible parents of these daredevil (I’m willing to bet) boys.

This bit of news gave me a lot of cheer and hope. I now wait for the day when parents of daughters who commit suicide and are forced to suffer atrocities at their in-laws are also arrested.

If you wonder at my extreme reaction, perhaps you might like to read my article on Bride Burning, a call to action and my long running fictional piece (most of which is drawn from real-life) – Moonshine.

Thank you for visiting, I am happy to play hostess after a long time 🙂 Do let me know your thoughts and look forward to reading anything interesting – the good the bad the ugly – that you may have to share.

Have a wonderful weekend.

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. -R. Buckminster Fuller

CFFC: Leaves and Trees

Whew! I almost missed this fun foto challenge of Cee’s! And my favorite topic too – Leaves and Trees. And I have discovered a recent fascination for leaves as well so picking and choosing was quite a challenge. Hoping that you will enjoy my selection.

Assorted

Let’s begin with an assortment of leaves, mostly teak leaves.

3leaves

Just trying for some perspective here – they are huge arent they?

GreenLI was fascinated by this find and carried it inside for some special treatment

AshokA collection of dried Ashoka tree leaves.

BananaBanana leaves against a cloudy evening sky

EucaEucalyptus tree standing tall against the litchi trees. Don’t miss the fair elbows!

RedgreenThe greens attempts to tone down the exuberance of the reds

BattyNext I have a really batty tree for you. Yes! those black things are bats waiting for darkness to fall.

Bare

Perhaps she dropped her leaves because she didn’t want any hanger-ons – what do you think? Did you notice her pose? Perhaps the stone sculptors of ancient India took inspiration from her kind. And before you scroll down – look! Mango blossoms – the prize for the heat and dust!

GoldenA golden tree by the road

TendrilsA mystery tree with strange tendrils hanging down like some exotic jewelry. Anyone know which tree? Ferdi?

FortThe last one standing at the Chittorgarh fort. Oh the stories it could tell

BadhairThis one’s having a really bad hair day 😀 Or perhaps it has seen some really hair-raising stuff in its heydays. After all this is the place for committing jauhar and sati.

CloverI clicked this patch of clover leaves hoping to find a lucky four-leafed one at leisure. No such luck yet – what about you?

ParlorAll neat and tidy, ready to toe the line and follow rules and regulations with not a hair out of place.

AsulikeAnd then we have this place where there’s no sense or order, each to her own to be as she likes no questions asked. Which do you prefer?

SunkissedAnd finally the Sun kisses this one good night 🙂

Thanks for visiting and sharing your favorite one!

WPC: Moo Point

Here’s my third and final re-post for the Daily Post a story in pictures. Hopefully I shall be back with fresh content soon. Thanks for your visits and patience. Have a wonderful day.

Stories and more

One sunny winter morning, we set to explore the Kolkata suburbs. Err well actually, the boys were on the lookout for a suitable place to reconnect minus the usual noise of their own ‘inhibitory’ pathways. And I, being blessed with no such inhibitions, tagged along for some possible photo ops. And voila there unfolded right before my phone camera a live drama.

brunchThe ladies were out for a bit of a munch at brunch

gossipPerhaps share a few confidences away from the old hag and other potential eavesdroppers.

dangerOh but wait – what was that? Danger!!!

retreatTime for a graceful and disdainful retreat – the leading lady led the way, while a tardy youngster grabbed a mouthful for the road.

retreat2Feeling brave, I ventured closer. She gave me a beady glare – No interviews or autographs please. I have other urgent business to attend to – she trotted off on…

View original post 142 more words

On the Squirrel’s Trail

One of the best (and possibly the best) part of shifting is re-discovery of once favored things, dresses, books and now blog posts 😀 No I am not shifting blogs but the Daily Post’s challenge – a visual story is very apt for a couple of my earlier posts (yes be warned! There’s at least one more) so here’s the second reblog of my own post. Is that a bit like blowing one’s trumpet? Or that of the squirrel? Do tell!

Stories and more

It’s time for Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge and as usual I had a lot of fun and hope you do too 😀

So off we go – first the WAY

20160827_131227.jpg

Confused? Perplexed perhaps? Oh but hush while the Performer readies

sq-1And steadies:

sq-2

And off he goes!

sq-3Look this way

sq-4And that way

sq-5

After that lightning ‘bolt’ risking bone and sinew, time for some much needed rest 😀

sq-6

Thanks Cee for hosting such lovely challenges and letting me get away with it 😉

View original post

A Love Story in Pics

The Daily Post this week invites us to share a visual story. I am busy shifting houses (now that would tell an amazing story but that’s another story for another day 😉 but since I can’t seem to keep away from the blog world, I am re-posting one (from August 2016) which some of you may have seen. But I think it is worth a revisit. Feel free to disagree and move on! 😀

Stories and more

The other day I spotted a pair of geese:

1A GOOSE.jpg

Excited, I moved in for a closer shot:

But no matter how much I tried, the goose just wouldn’t let me click his mate. It honked and glared and pretended to be interested in the distal most piece juicy stem.

G3.jpg

Can you beat that?

The typical Indian male I supposed and walked away (or at least pretended to but the goose wasn’t that much of a goose – it wasn’t buying or budging).

Until I really walked away. That’s when I noticed:

G4

She was injured or ill and he was merely trying to keep away an opportunistic predator.

G5

Blessed to witness such a rare and precious sight.

View original post

CB&W: A Double Dare

Black and white (or sepia) photos  of anything with double letters. A challenging challenge especially because for best results one must use highly textured subjects. Not sure if I have been completely true to that bit of valuable advice…

BottomA massive storage container. But I cannot quite fathom what exactly they stored – grains perhaps. But how did they scrape the bottom of the barrel? By climbing in I guess. Good place to play hide and seek but only if it is at least half full with solid stuff.

ChittorA view of the Chittor fort. These days, Sound and Light shows are held every evening on the lawns. Somehow in the sepia version I can hear the tinkling of anklets, perhaps a teasing laugh and the rustle of silk skirts. Can you?

Door1Next I have a selection of doors – an ordinary wooden locked door

Door2A grade higher – a designer door. It is clearly the residence of someone of some importance.

Door3

The door of the fort or should I say the massive gates of the fort. Notice the spikes near the top but not reaching below or going right to the top? Can you guess why? I have mentioned the reason before in an earlier post. No? Well go on think some more and answer’s below the next photo as that is also a hint.

BattlefieldJust beyond the gate is the battlefield where the Rajputs fought the invaders. Elephants were used in battle and to hammer the gates open. And hence the spikes at the height of elephant heads to injure them – innovative but tragic for the innocent participants.

SteepA steep flight of stairs and as the warning sign indicates very low roofed as well. The City Palace at Udaipur is a maze of such flights of stairs from which there is no escape especially for the scrunched up outsider. Smart thinking eh.

StreetA BW version of street art – the previous post of Cee’s fun foto challenge has the original colored version. Perhaps you could check it out and share which one you prefer?

WallBack to the palace walls and its intricate design.

WoodWoody branches waiting for spring to pass before growing leaves to protect itself from the blazing Sun. Strange isn’t it that trees undress during winters and dress up in summers?

Instead of BW I went for sepia tones this time. Well what’s the verdict?

Just 4 Fun # 78

GM

So how was Holi? Colorful? Surely not as much as Mother Nature who’s busy playing her game of colors.

FlameIt is my ambition to see this live, until then I feast on the blooms that dot Delhi’s horizon heralding the arrival of spring.

Net

Actually even those who have to shift houses can’t sleep nights worrying, planning, fretting…ahh well this too shall pass. But only if there was a fast forward button. And while I am at it, perhaps a rewind button as well 😀

Eng copy

This may just be true – Indians have a high risk of heart disease. By the way did you know, eggs are now the good guys and the bad guys? Refined carbohydrates. But if you didnt know English, you wouldn’t be reading this and very likely your arteries wouldn’t get all hyper and clogged up. I wonder if there’s anyway to unlearn English?

Ele - eagle

It’s exam time and a good time to take this lesson to heart. Go easy on your kid (and yourself) remember, if it doesn’t end well – it isn’t the end. Besides it’s never over until you say it is right?

Image result for jokes images in english

It happens! Under pressure people get confused. My son was at his chemistry board practicals when he got an SOS from a classmate. He wasnt getting the desired reaction with the given salt. So he led his friend through the entire exercise. Did you put A? Add B. Heat. Mix. Dilute. Add HCl? Yes. Yes. Yes. Went the beleaguered classmate. Finally my son asked – Did you add the test salt? Oops!

Image result for jokes images in english

So just chill and believe

Braver,stronger,smarter.

All the very best to all exam goers!

36 Hilarious Pictures about Marriage #funnypics #humor #lol #funnymemes #funnypictures

All said and done, don’t want you to chill so much either 😀 😀

minion quotes

You can say that but only after the exams 😉

That’s it from me this week and as usual none of these are mine. All are borrowed from the internet or received as forwards. Have a wonderful week.

Well okay one last one before I leave on what not to do (but I wish I had the gumption to do)

Image result for calvin and hobbes school comics

Well which one’s your favorite?

Just Another Tree

NeemjpgJust another Neem tree residing in a palace courtyard with not much to do except litter the place with golden yellow leaves every spring.

Neem2Rooted to the spot and bored to her core, she yawns and rustles her branches. Oh the tales she could tell, if anyone cared to listen.

Neem3And lo behold she has gathered quite a few fresh green followers glistening with eagerness – now if only one of them could type 😉

Linked to Becca’s Sunday Trees – have a wonderful day.

 

CFFC: A Wild Collection

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge is all about going wild – err wildlife related. Are you game? Or a sitting duck 😉

Let’s begin with some animal art

ArtSee anything you like? The elephant in the middle seems to be a rip off from the one at the City Palace

Elephant

Elephants were a hot favorite with Maharajas

ElephantsAnd why not? Unmatched in size and strength, they are a symbol of power and invincibility.

ChetakThis is a replica of Chetak the famous horse of Maharana Pratap. Chetak is still revered for his bravery and loyalty towards his master and hence the snout signifying elephant-like strength.

HorseOne of the horses of the current Maharaja in its stable.

Horse2A saddled horse waits for potential riders with his master.

CamelA decked up camel looking for parking space amongst cars

BirdI tried to capture a bird in flight – did you notice the twig in its beak? An architect!

BirdsLook who’s here to catch a flight! How many can you see?

CatKitty ponders on the meaning of life – to descend or not to descend

DogAn adopted stray dog chills out on his brand new bed

SnakeLoved the coils of the snake in this sculpture

ZipLook who’s taking a stroll on the highway. But of course they are blessed with divine protection. One is the vehicle of Yama Lord of Death and the other a favorite of the Lord of the Lords.

SPF: The Conformist

25-mike-vore-february-25th-2018
Photo (c) Mike Vore

The Conformist

Oft on my travels I see

the path diverging into the woods

winding and snaking into nothingness

shielding spooky ghosts and fanged monsters

concealing priceless pearls and gems

 

Oft on my travels I see

the path diverging into the woods

whispering gripping gut wrenching

enchanting irresistible

alluring tales

 

Oft on my travels I see

the path diverging into the woods

wondrously I probe the unknown darkness

until the known Devil leads me

back to the well trodden path

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and Mike Vore for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Is it a story, does it fit the challenge – I am hoping you can clear that up. Thanks for visiting.

A Salute to the Wall

In times where it is commonplace to talk of bringing down walls here is one Wall that we could do with more of. If you are a cricket buff or from India you would know of whom I am talking about – Rahul Dravid a cricketer par excellence.

Rahul in his heydays was known as the Wall for his stolid reliability and patience to spend hours and hours at the crease despite all odds. Although he has his own self-deprecating theories about why he was named so.

He retired from cricket in 2012 and could have easily been a wall and rested on his laurels. But the Wall is just a sobriquet. He’s a doer. Given the opportunity he accepted the coaching the Indian Under-19 cricket team.

And worked his magic.

They won the 2018 ICC World Cup early this month. Celebrations, jubilation, accolades and cash prizes rained down. The BCCI announced cash rewards for the coach (Rs 50 lakh), team members (Rs 30 lakh) and coaching staff (Rs 20 lakh).

The Wall took objection to this announcement.

Why the discrepancy? He expressed his displeasure.

Excuse us but how much more money do you want?

No! Why should I get so much more than the rest of the staff?

What?! Err…that’s the norm. In any case, they can’t be given as much as you.

FINE. Then I’ll take less and we’ll share it equally.

The BCCI had little choice but to bow down to this hitherto unheard of stance.

To reiterate, as it is difficult to believe that some one would actually do such a thing in today’s time and era of each one for himself, Rahul Dravid took a Rs 25-lakh (or nearly a $ 40,000) pay cut just to ensure parity in incentive to all support staff. Now every member of the coaching staff including Dravid will get Rs 25 lakhs

Rahul Dravid has shown that the shelf life of a sportsperson maybe short but a gentleman lives forever.

May his tribe grow and prosper.

***

This is my submission for the monthly We Are the World Blogfest which seeks to promote positive news.

Do share your views, opinions, suggestions and positive news.

Wishing you all a wonderful colorful and joyous Holi and a super weekend.

 

CB&W: Structured

The theme for this week’s Black and White Photo Challenge is Structure. And as usual Cee gives us license and freedom to enjoy – who can resist that right?

TempleKalika Mata Temple an 8th-century temple at Chittorgarh Rajasthan India. The upper parts of the structure are more recent.

VijayVijaya Stambh is an imposing victory monument built in 1448 AD. Constructed of red sandstone and white marble, Vijay Stambh is nine storeys tall with a height of 37.19 meters and a base height of 3.0 meters. Another version and other details are in an earlier post.

CafeThe inner structure of a modern day cafe

Bike

Couldnt resist a quick covert snap of the innards of this bike. Not only had I never seen the inside of a bike from such close quarters but the man (whose hands are visible) was/is a fascinating character. Apparently some part for the bike wasn’t available (or too expensive) and he was trying to get it repaired through some jugaad tactics. And Steve Woz says “where’s the creativity?” Possibly he is not familiar with the Indian jugaad :- a flexible approach to problem-solving that uses limited resources in an innovative way.

LeafAnd now time for my latest craze – the teak leaf. It’s massive with such well defined structure don’t you think?

MicroHowzz that for intricate structure?

No strA leaf decaying but the structure, unlike for other stuff, is the last to go.

stoolThe neat structure of a handmade woven stool made of reed and rayon strings

RoseI am, in all honesty, not a big fan of roses but this one’s near perfect structure and symmetrical asymmetry was captivating.

So which one is your favorite – or didn’t you like any?

CFFC: Partners for Life

The other day I spotted a pair of geese:

1A GOOSE.jpg

Excited, I moved in for a closer shot:

But no matter how much I tried, the goose just wouldn’t let me click his mate. It honked and glared and pretended to be interested in the distal most piece juicy stem.

G3.jpg

Can you beat that?

The typical Indian male I supposed and walked away (or at least pretended to but the goose wasn’t that much of a goose – it wasn’t buying or budging).

Until I really walked away. That’s when I noticed:

G4

She was injured or ill and he was merely trying to keep away an opportunistic predator.

G5

Blessed to witness such a rare and precious sight.