Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Mrs Pinkcheeks: Hamari Amrita!

Mrs Pinkcheeks: Hamari Amrita!: Amrita Pritam is a towering name in Hindi and Punjabi literature! Hats off to the women that she portrays in her stories! In her openin...

Hamari Amrita!

Amrita Pritam is a towering name in Hindi and Punjabi literature! Hats off to the women that she portrays in her stories! In her opening lines she writes, every story has a protagonist and the second character is either the circumstances or the lover. The peripherals could be the other supporting characters, doors, windows, house or even the stairs. However there is a third character also, the one who writes the story. But Amrita Pritam refuses to become the third character because she says that a writer lives the protagonist’s life. She takes the burns and brunt on her chest and she even cries along with the main character.

How true it is! A writer is the shadow of the protagonist and with every calamity that the protagonist faces, she herself undergoes the trauma, calm or joy. There is one more angle to a story, and that is the reader. A reader is the sound board and a mirror. It is for the readers that a writer writes and takes her inspiration from.

Pritam’s protagonists are women of grit and valour. They have chosen to be independent and resilient and reject those who try to bully them. In the days of partition when women had no voice, Pritam portrayed gritty women who never compromised on self esteem.

They all had beautiful dreams in their hearts. They came from various strata of society but they were all the same in their mind, never compromising on their goals and beliefs. They were intense and never let their demure down. They were all lovable.
They would believe in a person very easily and hence were an easy prey.  When they realized their mistakes they never took any revenge but chose to live their life on their own terms. Whether it’s Angoori or Lachcho or Amkadi all of them are equally lovable. You cannot choose Pritam’s one protagonist over another. It’s a proof enough how deeply Pritam must have felt about all of them and how much care she must have taken to pen them one by one. Each one with equal zest and depth!

When today we talk about feminism and fight over more powers for women, Pritam’s protagonists come to my mind as the most forward thinking women. There was nothing going right for them. They worked hard in most difficult conditions, they were overpowered by men, they had no say in any matter but they still kept up their individuality. They did not fight for their rights, they fought their own emotions. They never made any attempt to change the society but they never let their hearts change even in the adverse conditions.

Amrita Pritam has given us a treasure that is very precious. Her writings are fresh even in the days of Facebook and Google. I salute to her and her pen which is immortal!!!
Let us all make an attempt to glance through the minds of these women, at least once! 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Finding the ME time

By - Mridula Chaudhari
When my dear friend told me that she was on a rejuvenating vacation, I was literally thrilled. I loved that idea of going to an exotic place, all by myself with the cell phone switched off and taking in the beauty of the surroundings. Exploring the new place and living all by myself.

How do you find this idea? Does it scare you or excite you? For there will be only these two extreme reactions to this idea of a vacation. For me it’s a perfect vacation.

Don’t you think, all of us over 40 have actually forgotten to spend time by ourselves? Our minds are so tuned to work on the given direction that seldom do we really live our life for our own self. Always trying to accommodate others and being helpful takes a toll. This accommodating for everyone else whether its office, office collegues, friends, family is so trying that you want to break all the shackles and fly like a free bird.

Trust me when you feel like it and can’t take off to an ‘exotic’ location just take your two wheeler, kick start it and take off on a lonely road. Let the cool air brush your cheeks and hair and enjoy the feeling. It is heartening to take a long drive like this. It beats the whole experience of driving in an air conditioned car with closed windows. Let the teenager come out of you and let your heart feel the thrill and your mind young. For few hours forget who you are and what responsibilities you need to discharge. Be childlike and be yourself.

These are some small tips to remain happy and young. It beats the monotony set in due to drudgery of routine. Reading a book all alone in the house also is a good stress buster. Or doing all those things that you’ve been doing as a girl, and cannot find time for them makes life energetic. Polishing nails, going to the spa, soaking in warm water, visiting an old friend, watching a hilarious movie all by yourselves are few other ways of keeping young.

Try this and you will get new wings to recharge yourself!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Kya Khoya….. Kya Paya……

By- Mridula Chaudhari
Thank you friends for missing this space for new posts, new ideas and new thoughts. Your phone calls have brought me back!

I have abstained from writing for reasons not known to me either. However, my dear friends, you have pulled me back to the place where I rightfully belong. I am back to say ‘Good Bye’ to the year soon to end and welcome the new year with a bang.


It is time we really peeked into our own self to find out what we did, what we should have done, what we missed and what we could not do in the year gone by. Don’t you think, our mind is a well which is deep and many thoughts remain buried inside? We seldom peep inside and try to fathom our deeper senses to realize what we have achieved so far. The race is so fierce that we never get any opportunity to bask in our glory. Forever we are trying to chase a new horizons.

This year end, I have decided to take stalk of the situation and convey my sincere thanks to all those people who have brought happiness to my life. Needless to say the list starts from my maid who has given me the support that I cannot dream of getting from anybody else. She has been instrumental in making my life much more livable. How else do you think I could host dinners for my friends and relatives? Reach office on time each day of the year and not be ridiculed for coming late? Sleep peacefully at night without getting concerned about next day’s household chores? Should anybody ask me, who has been the backbone of my life for the past one year? The prize will go to my Sunita J

This is no Filmfare award function that we have to thank our dad and mom and husband and children. This is life man J

Let’s be for once thankful to our boss who has utilized our time more productively and also gave us a feel good factor when we look at our bank pass book. He isn’t always a creep man J Let’s give him some benefit of doubt and be more sensitive towards him and thank him for considering us useful.

Let’s also be thankful to that neighbor who has been stabbing us in the back. If not for her, how would we become so strong and ready to take the world head on?
Last but not the least, let’s be thankful to our own selves for being strong and withstanding all the odds against very hot summers, very trying days of demonetization, being patient to read all WhatsApp messages and replying to at least half of them, remembering birthdays of family, extended family, friends and pets, for online shopping festivals that has made life really really easy without going through the hassles of travelling, for the new coffee shop that has come up around the corner, for the newly dug roads that has made us expert drivers, for Rahul Gandhi who has given us enough fodder throughout the year to laugh and cry at the same time, to the film fraternity who dished out variety of cinema.

Do you think I have forgotten anybody? Yes, I know I have but let’s do a silent prayer and add our own ‘Thank You babies’ J

Good bye 2016 and Welcome 2017……more power, more blessings and more perseverance to all of us!!!!


Monday, October 24, 2016

Peace of mind on SALE…SALE…SALE

By- Mridula Chaudhari
For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind - Ralph Waldo Emerson
   Early morning cup of tea always has an accompaniment, that of a daily newspaper. I can’t think of my morning cuppa without my most bankable companion. It is such an amazing mix that few can live without. Now a days, however, many households do not get their daily newspaper, they prefer reading online. This is a good habit, costs less, but does it give similar joy? I have my own doubts.

    Akbar Shaikh is an exceptional example of a newspaper vendor. Whatever the weather, heavy rain or chilling cold, Akbar has to drop the newspaper at my doorstep, exactly at 5.15. He braves all weather conditions, his own home conditions, his physical condition or his health condition. I cannot but admire Akbar for his regularity and prompt service. On the days when waking up is difficult, I take my inspiration from Akbar and leave the bed promptly.

    Coming back to the newspaper reading, on that particular day I took the newspaper inside and it felt extremely bulky. Thinking that there is load of news in it, I grabbed at it and with my steaming hot cup of tea proceeded to read it. But lo…, I kept turning page after page and advertisements kept staring in my face. Diwali Dhamaka was happening much before Diwali. With sales by the most popular online stores, newspaper shouted….SALE….SALE…..SALE.

   If these were online sales, then why did they need print media to support them for advertising? Why couldn’t they just confine their shouts of SALE….SALE…SALE online? If they did so, life for people like me, who read news in the newspaper, would be so much more livable?
There was so much sale, that I felt they would give the goodies free of cost after a while!!! Their Diwali Dhamaka was already making dhamakas at people’s house with women fighting with their husbands to loosen their purse strings.

    I kept turning page after page and still there was no news. I was wondering what happened to Pakistan and to PM’s itinerary and if girls were safe in our country, all of a sudden. The newspaper had only the SALE…..happening with cell phones, jewellery, TV, Refrigerator etc. on offer.

    I was wondering why people were spending so much money, spending or squandering, and that too just by clicking and entering their credit card numbers. Once Diwali is over and it is back to the grind, I can bet we would have bought half the things that we did not require at all. These goodies have entered our homes and taken away not just the space in our homes but our peace of mind too. In the bargain we SOLD our peace of mind, I guess!!!                                                                

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Highs & lows of growing up

By - Mridula Chaudhari

Best books 

Turning current circumstances into opportunity is key to success!

Stepping out of Std. V and stepping in Std. VI and going in the next class every year is the best phase for children. Not just for children but for their parents too, I guess. Children have considerable time to enjoy their study time and play time. If you ask the children however, or even their mothers they will differ with my opinion. Mothers of school going children are always bogged down by their child’s incessant demands and the demands of the current education system. However, trust me they say all this only because they have not seen the days ahead.

     Come college days and the challenges are multiplied. Students lose their focus completely and are at a loss to know what they were supposed to do. They come under tremendous pressure from their peers and parents too. They need to spend time hanging around with their friends and also in their study rooms. Pressure to deliver good results looms large as this is the time when they have to face competitive exams too.

      There is no need to panic though. Sincerity and hard work with a dash of smartness helps sail through. Their job is only to keep focus and believe in themselves. There are number of choices thrown in front of them, spoilt for choices as they say more frequently. It’s where the proficiency of prioritizing helps to a large extent. If the choices are studied thoroughly, they can be tackled in the best possible way. There is certainly no need to panic at such times. There is no need to regret the past or be anxious about the future. Life takes its own course and if we are focused nothing can go horribly wrong.

     Once you take up the course the next worry is whether, I will do well or not, whether I will get a good break with the current course or not. The list however does not stop here it goes on like the proverbial tail of the hanuman, never ending.

     If that is so, is there any reason to keep cribbing about the current situation we are in? We are out here to create our own destiny, but sometimes we end up being victims of circumstances? Is there anything wrong here? Sometimes we may find ourselves better positioned than what we had dreamt of. Learning to accept our surroundings and circumstances is the key to success. Accept and smile than reject and whimper.

     Turning current circumstances into opportunity is the key to success! “The people who lose are the ones who either don’t fail at all and get stuck, or the ones who fail so big, they don’t get to play again.” —so said Seth Godin.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

By - Mridula Chaudhari

Mobile phones

Treatise with Technology

To crash an airplane, you need to start flying one, said my friend. That got me thinking and thinking really hard. How true it was what he said. His reaction came due to a lame excuse given by me for not able to meet him since he was staying way too long from my place.

It is so easy for us to say no to a particular activity that sounds inconvenient. We conveniently call off everything that we cannot identify with little thinking what it may have on offer. When Rashmi was asked to write for her school magazine, she conveniently replied that she doesn’t have any inclination towards creative writing. Rashmi did not as much give a try and finally could not develop any writing prowess. However, Shubhangi took up the opportunity and tried her hand at it and pursued it until she became a good writer. Today she can boast of writing several articles in several editions and takes pride in her achievement.
It is not an easy task to learn a new trait but giving it a try certainly is. Learning a new skill can open new doors and give new perspectives. A man is a student all his life, they say. In this regard, senior generation has a hard task at hand. With newer features getting added to the gadgets, they have to learn new skills everyday. My mom once made me sit next to her and show how to use WhatsApp on her new cell phone. After the initial lessons and quite a few Q&As and practice sessions, today she can use @ feature better than I. She makes sure she gets the latest upgrades and converses in all the languages she knows. I finally learned how to write in vernacular only from her. Her forwards aren’t forwards, she types the best ‘Thoughts’ herself before sending them. She secretly feels that she can get good senses prevailing on me. I, at my end, wish I could get her gyan right.

The excitement that she shows in learning new things is exemplary. If we can get our children to be as excited about things around us, they can all fly an airplane I guess!!!