Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Busy Busy Busy

Coming off my Sabbath Rest life is now in high gear! We've moved house and the internet connection has not moved with us yet. Time has become so precious. My day starts early and ends late, and is packed in between. Sometimes I wonder if I did the right thing. But I know I have. I get like that when standing in the bus for two hours on my ride home from work gets a little tiring. It was time for me to get back to the world and I should make the most of it.

Everyday I think of stuff I want to blog about... but don't get the time. Once our connection is set up at home it should get easier. Till then I'm not going to stress about not blogging!!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

New Job

I have a new job that I'm really excited about. I started last week. For now I go in thrice a week but will do it full time once I'm done with my classes. After the interview I wasn't very sure if I would be selected but... I was! :) Good feeling.

The only thing is that it's rather far away... and I am back to taking two buses and leaving at 7:45am and traveling for two hours one way.

So I am a little stressed. But nothing good comes for free now does it?

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Culture Class

I must say I have enjoyed this semester. My students are bright, interested and willing to learn. I think my course this time has improved from the last and I'm glad it has. It should.

I've been learning a great deal from them. They too force me to think differently, to learn more and grapple with more. For this I am grateful.

The course will soon be over and I will miss going into class.

Gerald Stern

I had arranged a meeting with Jeet Thayil and two of my student from my Culture class who loved These Errors are Correct. I had taken Jeet's poems to class and played the CD. The two bright young women are students of Literature back home, and one is looking to do a post graduation in creative writing with Poetry as a major.

So we had coffee and Koshys. The girls were full of questions and I could see that they had done their homework. They had devoured the two books of poetry I had given them and worked out exactly what they wanted to ask Jeet from form, to titles, to imagery to design art. It was a good meeting.

So through the meeting Jeet mentions some poets and asks if we've read... and we had to say "no". Then he mentioned Gerald Stern and when we nodded blankly said, "Are you guys writers?! What do you read!" So we were commissioned to head off to Blossom to pick up Gerald Stern's American Sonnets which we found after much searching and almost giving up. But we were glad we found it.

I borrowed the book from the girls and have been reading it. I love the way the poems sound. And today I looked Stern up and found him on Poets.org along with audio clips of his poems. It's always wonderful to hear a poet read his/ her poetry. Somehow it adds more meaning and you understand it better. The sonnets require repeated reading and their beauty - I think - lies in the fact that you don't fully understand them. There is a sense of mystery to them. Sometimes you think you've had a sudden surge of enlightenment and begin to see something. Is that what the poet wanted you to see? I don't know.

But I see it nevertheless and I like it. A few days later I will return to the same poem and see a little more. They are not poems you can read once and do away with. You have to keep coming back.

Something new

When I was working in my communications job I began a book. A book of learnings if you will. Everyday I would have my book open at my computer as I worked and when I came across something I did not know before I would write it down. Since we were in the business of newsletters I often had to read about a variety of things from skyscrapers to digital oil fields, from different kinds of tea to what would keep monsoon chills at bay. So I thought I should put it down.

Another reason I started this book is that I realized my life had become very 'small'(according to me). I had my job, I had home and church and that was that. I wasn't growing in anyway, I wasn't pursuing any of my interests, I was merely surviving. I almost had a breakdown one night because I realized that I had turned into a very boring person. Even the old "dry wit" was sparse. I had become boring even to myself. When this happens of course one loses confidence and self-worth. I didn't want to meet new people or talk to anyone I didn't already know coz I had no clue what I would say!

So the book not only documented what was new, it also pushed me to try out new things. I would listen to internet radio and listen to genres of music I would never have before! I began to read about kitchen gardening, quilting, art, music... anything that I found interesting. A new song each day, a new painting and artist, a new composed, a new quilt pattern... so much to discover! Life takes on a new meaning when you want to explore. Everything is so much more interesting.

So, I think I should start again. Something new each day. Something that I have not heard, seen, felt, tasted, or done before. I should do it!

The Elephant, the Tiger & the Cellphone

I really like this book. It's interesting to read and tells me so much that I did not quite know about my country, or puts in words thoughts and feelings I have had about her. It's strange but I felt like I was reading a novel when I read Shashi Tharoor's book. I didn't want to put it down and waited to find out what he was talking about in the next chapter!

History has always been difficult for me to read. Though this is not a historical book, it does give the present a socio-historic context that helps us understand life now a little better. Must read.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Vision

A year ago at a Sunday School Teachers' Training programme one of the facilitators asked us to write a paragraph describing the person we wanted to be at that time. So we had to think of everything we wanted to be, knowing that we were not those things, and put it down. We had to write it in the third person. Here is what I said in 2007.

Carol is 27, full of energy and has a zest for life. She is hopeful, positive yet practical. Her warm smile and welcoming manner makes her approachable. She takes care of herself - watching what she eats and getting enough exercise.

She has many interests but is currently pursuing theatre and photography. She reads a lot especially in areas of children, education and society. She cooks now and then but her day is not consumed with everyday household work. She tries to be involved with children - teaching them and being part of their lives.

She's learning to be a disciple of Jesus and everyday she tries to become more like him.

In life and marriage she is learning to love - her family, her husband, God and herself.


I think it was nice for me to put that down then. And I should really look at who I want to be now. I can already tell that a lot has changed and some of it is the same.

I don't that good a job of taking care of myself and am afraid may not be too into being a disciple of Jesus also... so I need to work on that. But I think I am working towards becoming a better person. I don't know how warm and approachable I am though. I need to keep coming back to this.

Children and abusing

It's Saturday and the kids are out playing. Amidst shouts of "What ra!" and "Play da" and "OUT!" is the "Shut up!" and "I'll kick your face ah!" They're my neighbors kids and I have seen one of them from the time he was a baby. Over the past few months I've been hearing them swear at each other a fair bit. Threats of knocking each others teeth out, breaking limbs and generally bringing pain fly around as much as the rubber ball they play lagori with. They are learning new swear words. I can tell since we hear them spell out that much loved four letter word late in the evening. It's like their are educating each other on the different words they can use.

When do children begin abusing each other? When do they begin to think that swearing and insulting others is cool? These boys are probably in the fourth grade but I have heard younger fellows cursing each other in Kannada even at the age of three! They can't say much else but they do have their abuses down. It seems that's one of the first things they learn when the head off to play school.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sewing Machine

So I'm thinking of buying a sewing machine in a couple of months. Not sure which one to go with though. Singer has Embroidery machines, Electronic Sewing machines, and Sewing machines. Since I was hoping to quilt, they do have a quilting machine - the 7469Q Confidence Quilter™



But I also want to do some craft kind of stuff. I'm not sure if this will work for both. It should I suppose. Dunno.Anybody with any suggestions?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Hello life :)

This is not to mean that I was not living for the past six months. In fact I felt more alive during this time than I did the previous year, or the year before that. Life has opened up for me and I'm enjoying it. I feel... lighter! :)