Posts Tagged ‘friends’

Puns….

September 16, 2020
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I posted this photo of my friend with, er, his kit lens. More pun-jabs followed from others i in the group….
Looks like the favourite lens in his kitty.
I wonder if there’s a problem with the lens, if he is getting it a CAT scan.
May be he is taking a kitcat break.
Oh…I cat make a pun on this.
Why ca(n)t you make a pun on this? Cat got your tongue?
I was kitting . I just made one.
Trust that he didn’t get scratched. If the lens had dropped that would have been a catastrophe!
Nine lives for the lens!

About Prasad Natarajan

May 10, 2020

When I first met Prasad, he had a pad and pencil; and since then, I have rarely seen him without something to do with his artistic endeavours.

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Prasad with his father, Sri Natarajan

In today’s competitive world, it is not easy to leave a full-time job to become a professional artist; it takes a leap of both courage and faith, both of which Prasad showed.

He reads widely, studies the work of several artists around the world, and has developed his own unique style, working in many media. His canvases sell very well indeed, with their mix of talent, technique and expressed passion.

One of the reasons why he is an unusual artist is that rather than nurture just his own talent (and that of his son), he has, from the beginning, been what I call an “umbrella artist”– gathered together other artists, and worked hard to provide the struggling creators a platform where their talents can be showcased. To organize a show is not easy, and he has taken on this daunting task several times, in a pioneering effort to highlight wildlife art.

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The first wildlife art exhibition on 27 Sept ’18. Prahlad, Sudha, Prasad, Nidhi, Sreelata.

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Prasad’s family. His wife Asha, son Dhritiman and daughter Parineeta.

He has cannily harnessed social media to build up a circle of friends and connoisseurs worldwide. He has not hesitated to help upcoming youngsters, in a field where competition can be fierce. He has his pulse of the purchasing public, introducing innovations like a show of miniatures where the prices were pegged at Rs. 5000.

He’s conducted workshops and teaching session for many children and adults, giving of his time and effort very generously. He has overcome obstacles in his life with determination…and a cheerful smile.

It’s been my privilege to be his friend, and I wish him, his art, and Art for Wildlife and Nature, the very best in the years ahead.

A salute to Dr Suresh

March 9, 2020

I would like to salute someone who’s been a part of my life for 40 years (yes!) now. When my daughter was 6 months old (June or July of 1979) I was visiting Bangalore, and she had dreadful, projectile diarrhoea. My friend Shantha told me about Dr H Suresh, and I went to his clinic at Jayanagar 9th Block, and he cured her. After many years, when I moved into south Bangalore, my friend Mythreyi told me about a doctor’s clinic, and lo and behold, it was Dr Suresh!

He has been in the same spot all these years. Not for him the overarching ambition of huge growth; he is, and always has been, a family physician. He does not medicate unnecessarily, or advocate unnecessary tests or surgery. When his years of experience tell him that the matter is serious, he steps back and suggests that the patient goes to a specialist This has happened to me a few times when I have taken friends to him.

Content and happy with the living he makes, he takes off on his birthday and his wedding anniversary (his wife, Manjula, is a physician too, running a clinic at their residence). He attended my father in law, being one of the very few doctors, even then (around 2002 to 2004) who would make house visits.

He has treated us, and after they moved to Bangalore, our daughter and son in law, and our grandchildren too…a family physician in the true sense of the word, because the children are the fourth generation that he is treating. Roopa has been assisting him for quite a few years now, and I trust her as much as I trust the good doctor!

His clinic is named after his daughter, and is another reason why it rang a bell when I visited after a long gap…it’s called Deepa Clinic! A rare gem in today’s world of medicine. Blr, 070320.

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An anecdote from the past, with a twist in the tail!

January 30, 2020

I wish we could visit a lot more of our seniors (yes, senior even to me!) and hear their stories and anecdotes. Today I visited a couple, and here’s the anecdote:

The gentleman had a big group of Japanese visitors in his factory; in preparation for the visit, he’d asked several of his colleauges and their spouses to take a course in Japanese. His wife had a ear for languages, and completed the next course too.

During the visit, she heard the visitors talking amongst themselves about the chaotic traffic in the city (remember, this must have been thirty years ago!) and expressing worry.

During the official welcome speech which she delivered in Japanese, she also added, “I know some of you were worried about the traffic and your safety…please don’t worry. The driver of the van is our second-best company chauffeur.”

“Oh!” exclaimed a visitor, relieved. Then added, “Where is your best driver?”

“Still in the hospital,” was the reply!

I am very fond of this couple. They have a great sense of humour and a big fund of stories!

“Mami”…Mrs M V A Sastry, 031119

December 3, 2019

She passed away on 3rd Nov 2019.

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Photo from Prakash Sastry’s FB page

At first, when Usha called up to say that her mother was sinking, I felt very bad…I was leaving that evening for Madhya Pradesh, and was returning only after a week. Sure enough, when I returned from the forests, to a place where my mobile worked, I got the news that she had passed away.

I went down with viral fever, which recurred; this prevented me from attending the Vaikuntha Samaradhana, too. I felt really miserable. I wanted to hold my friends’ hands at this moment…to take comfort from them as much as to comfort them in their hour of loss.

But now…I feel better about it. I remember Mami, not in the sad state of her health…but as a very strong pillar of her family and circle of friends. Let me reminisce…

At the beginning, of course, Mami was, to me, only “Prakash’s mother” and “Usha’s mother”. It took me many years to realize what an excellent homemaker she was, and what a great “sahadharmini” for Mama. Their flat was always neat and spotless; there was always something that she would offer visitors She herself, was the same. A spick-and-span saree, hair tied neatly back in a plait, with perhaps a few flowers in her hair; face bright with sindhoor…and always, always, always, that welcoming smile on her face. Such unstinting affection. My heart overflows through my eyes, and I hear once again, her calm “Enna Deepa! Eppidi irukkai?”

What a great homemaker she was. She sent Usha for veena lessons, Prakash for violin; she watched with very quiet apride as they both became proficient. (In fact, I still feel that I rarely have heard the kind of “naadam” on the violin that I heard from Prakash.). She was patient and loving to Bhaskar, too, and his being “special”, though it must have been quite tough for her, never saw her complaining or wishing that things were otherwise.

She supported Mama through his career; they never changed their simple living and high thinking. At every gathering, you could see her, well-turned out….and that affectionate smile.

I never thought to ask her about her life before marriage, or how she managed, coming to a very strange city all those years ago. For me, she was like a mother or an aunt…a wise, mature person, who always managed.

When they moved to Bangalore, they had intense difficulty with the flat they had booked, and she silently supported Mama through the years of struggle before they could move into their own apartment. I have never heard her complain. “That’s the way it is!” would be her pragmatic comment.

She was an excellent cook. One of my great favourites was her “gasagasa” payasa…I used to joke about the ganja in it, and she would smile. She was never one to talk a lot, or laugh uproariously…but she always enjoyed the company of others. Did she sing herself? Did she learn any instrument in the time before she got married? Who were her parents? Oh…I never found out all this…I regret that now.

I got to know her more as a person (rather than “Usha-Prakash’s mother” after they moved to Malleswaram. Even then, when arthritis gave her a lot of knee/leg pain, she tried to bear it stoically. She took care of Prakash’s children while the parents went to work.

All through the time that Usha and Prasad went through severe health travails, she kept up her courage and hope. I remember telling Usha just before her major heart surgery at Vellore…”You will be out for the count, and fast asleep! I have come here more to be with your mother!” Which, of course, elicited another laugh from both of them. Usha’s daughters were a source of delight to her, too. She would smilingly share some small anecdote of their mischief.

Bhaskar’s passing away, and the manner of it, was the kind of tragedy that only she could have handled. What it must have cost her in terms of worry and emotional trauma..I can only guess. But she took that blow, too, that Fate dealt her. Dearest Mami, what a load you have carried in your heart…

When Mama died, something inside her seemed to crumble. That cheerful countenance was less so. But the affection never varied. I count myself so very lucky to have had that kind of unstinting affection and love, most of my life, from her.

Mami, I miss you more often than I would have thought possible. You taught me so many values in life, without a single sermon…you were the living example. Simplicity, competence, and wisdom…you were the epitome of these qualities.

So I am glad that I remember you as I last saw you…in full possession of your faculties, offering me some sweet which you had made.

I know that your suffering has ended, and that you are in a much better place now, looking down on us and blessing us. Why, then, are my eyes filling with tears?Why do I feel bereft?

Life has made me wary of rituals, so I am not unhappy that I could not attend the samaradhana or the homa that your children carried out in your memory. But your memory, and the memory of those happy, halcyon days in Calcutta…that is where you will live forever, smiling, your love reaching out to me, making me a carefree child once again.

Eid at Fatima’s home, 050619

June 6, 2019

Fatima (in the lehenga..she’s 20, can you believe it?) teaches K1 Hindi. She invited us over for Eid and, with her family, extended such warm hospitality!

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Fatima, her parents and brother Zain, with K1 and K2

When we got home, I explained to the children how Imitiaz, her father, had fallen on hard times and had to shut his tailoring shop. The children have just brought out some toys that they want to give Zain, her 7-year-old brother.

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The feast at Fatima’s
I am very proud of of Fatima, who works in an office; and I am very proud of my grandchildren. This warmth and inclusiveness is what Eid, or any other festival, is all about.

“Like”

May 16, 2019

Tell me, my dearly beloved dost,
On how many fora should I “like” your post?
I liked it first on Wild Pixel,
And ticked “like” again on Nature Clicks, as well.
Then came Jungle FB and Wildlife Lens.
I clicked those two, as we are friends.
By the time I’d responded on Nisarga and Wilderness Wired
I must confess, I was a little tired.
Yet I persisted on Prakriti Shot,
Added a like on Life Well Caught.
But now I feel like I’ve been in a wringer.
“No more!” says my poor, tired, “liking” finger.
And, in future, I wish to state:
I’ll “like” just once: not in dupli,tripli or quadruplicate!

*Names of FB groups completely imaginary, any resemblance to reality is completel

Hecky (Mukul)’s tribute to Jayesh,2018

April 5, 2019

Hecky’s tribute to his dad, when Jayesh quit his job: I have always shared a unique relationship with my father. He has been several things to me over the years and continues to assume different roles, even within the span of a single day.

An assertion of fatherhood takes the shape of two religious phone calls to me daily. He sheds that mould and becomes a friend when he shares his numerous and infamous below-the-belt jokes that I am sure you’re familiar with. A true corporate takeover of the household occurs when he makes excel sheets to explain concepts as simple as tying a shoelace to the family. And a true buddy, when he helps me recover from a crippling hangover.

Among all the roles that he has played in my life, the one that stands out constantly, is that of a teacher. The man is a walking life lesson. Immensely articulate, to my father, a true thing badly expressed, is a lie. He has always set the bar high, a bar that has become my life-long goal to one day surpass.

As my father leaves the role that he has for so long cherished at Fidelity, I want him to know that I love him and that I will always have his back. I want to assure him that despite the greying pastures that abound his head, greener pastures await him in his personal life.

My best wishes to a true renaissance man— renaissance in that everything he does was fresh in fifteen hundred.

I had to take that last jab.

Love you pa,

Hecky

Why I like FaceBook

December 14, 2018

Here I dip into someone’s thought.
There I see what someone’s bought.
I admire someone’s photograph.
I wish someone would cut their rant in half.
Read someone’s movie review.
Muse on someone’s political hue.
I tarry over someone’s art;
Someone’s music, that is a class apart.
Satisfied, I go to bed.
My friends…you fill up most of my head!
I’ll be back again tomorrow.
To check on you, in smiles or sorrow.
A lovely way to look and see
What’s up with you…. on FB!

P N Akhila, 301054-231118

November 27, 2018

When I married and moved to R K Nagar (Rama Krishna Nagar), Chennai, I underwent a lot of difficulties…the usual ones with an arranged marriage. I made friends with Akhila, who lived opposite…and truly, her affection (and generally sweet nature) carried me through those difficult years. She was exactly 7 days younger than I am.

Later, she took up a job, married, moved to Hyderabad…our contact was more sporadic, but there was never any change in our love for each other. She managed her job and her home, brought up two very sweet daughters, and dealt with many blows with her usual gentle courage. I managed to visit her in Hyderabad, and we met when the family was in Bangalore, too.

On an impulse, I’d emailed her to “update” and just before her 64th birthday (30th Oct), she called, explained about a serious illness, and sounded as cheerful about that as she’s always done about everything else. I sent her birthday wishes as usual, and was totally shattered to get a reply a couple of days ago from her elder daughter, saying that she’d passed away on Nov.23.

I have always called her “doe-eyed”. We were two women in two different, busy worlds, and yet we found chances to meet and keep our loving friendship up…I wipe the tears that roll down my cheeks, and carry on with my daily chores. This is life…the mundane soothes, masks, and trumps over the emotions.

My dear, dear Maankannu…my life is much poorer without your sweetness. 64…no age to go…but we have to answer the call, when it comes. I will regain my smile in a while…but right now…I miss my friend, who was almost a sister.