Tuesday, October 3, 2017

To get to read or not to

Sonny boy used to LOVE being read to. But as he grows up, while he does read, I cannot call him a book lover :-(  Both the Acha and myself are voracious readers (I used to be, at least), and that he isn't, is a fact I find it very hard to reconcile myself with.

He can watch anything on a screen- tv, computer, phone, tablet- anything, and he can spend HOURS in front of it. Which gets my GOAT!

Now he's 13, and while he can hold forth at length with an audience ( he has his Acha's gift of the gab), ask him to write, and its a different story. He's taken French, and I'm the tutor, and we're at loggerheads with each other during our sessions, because there are so many words, where the French and the English are derived from each other, and he doesn't know, because his English vocabulary isn't good enough. Because he doesn't read enough.

I used to keep putting embargos on gadget/screen time, but the Acha was the more lenient, 'fun' parent. Whereas I was deemed the heartless non-fun parent. My worry basically was that all this screen watching was only adding to his lack of focus, and lack of persevering with anything. This year, the Acha finally woke up to the realisation that it might soon be too late, and his son might never enjoy letters the way we did. So, we've jointly told him absolutely no screens, except on weekends. And this we did, using the excuse that 8th, 9th, 10th, there was going to be an awful lot to study.

So far so good. It helped that his marks were not too good, which hardened the Acha's faltering resolve. Me- us moms are made of sterner stuff. :-D 
Hope he takes to reading. 

Monday, October 2, 2017

The reading bug bites again, phew!

It had been ages since I'd read any new books. I just couldn't seem to find the concentration to keep at it, or rather the luxury of time to get lost in it.
Things haven't really changed, life is as busy as ever. In between, I even let go of the driver and the cook that I'd experimented with having. But then, all of a sudden, I got back my reading mojo. And that fills me with joy. I'd dearly missed my reading.
I'd been buying books, of course, but instead of finding their way to the bed/bedside table, they eventually got tucked into the book shelves at home. Not any more but. It all started with some Agatha Christies I bought in Aug. Easy, familiar, much loved writing.
Then I bought an author I'd been wanting to read for a long time. I'd not been getting her first book, n I'd wanted to read that. I found it finally. Anuja  Chauhan, and Those Pricey Thakur Girls. I loved her. It was a little like Pride n Prejudice, a little like M&Bs, very very readable, eminently enjoyable. Need to get more of her.
Then I bought The Girl On The Train. It was a little difficult to get into initially, but then slowly the bait caught. I read it on the flight from Delhi,  I read it from home, I read it on the train to Kannur, and with barely a few pages left to finding why he did it, and if the girl on the train would get free of him, I forgot the book at my mom's. Aaaaarrgggghhhh!! The frustration!!!! I had to wait a whole month before I could get it back, but when I did, I was able to immediately carry on like I'd read it yesterday.
A dear friend gifted me Divakaruni's Before We Visit The Goddess. I love all her books, Palace of Illusions the most. . This one was different. It was one single story, but spread across generations. And as usual you get entangled in the skeins she weaves so skilfully, almost effortlessly. She makes you want to know more about each character. . . , it would almost be like Roots.
And then, I bought my first Dalrymple. The Acha was a fan and had read nearly all his books, but I wasn't much into travelogues. Even so, a couple of years back, I'd read Nine Lives ( that was my introduction to him) n been entranced with the lives he wrote about. This time, it was The Age of Kali, and I understood more about stuff I'd read only headlines about. I wasn't as politically aware at the time of those happenings as I am now and reading about some of  the whys, the whats and the hows, chilled me. I loved reading about the Madurai Meenakshi temple. I'd bought it because it also had a piece on Chottanikkara Amma. But I was disappointed with that piece. The Devi in his story is different from the Devi in my heart. But then, like he himself put it, you must be god loving( I wouldn't say god fearing either, I don't fear the goddess, I love her like a mother) , only then can you understand her power. Or her infinite grace.
That's all for now. 

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Renewing jottings

Its been a while that I've been thinking to restart my blog. So many happenings left unrecorded, except for short notes on FB. And FB doesn't come anywhere close to blogging.

This year, Vijayadashmi was celebrated from Cochin. Owing to a death in my family, Sonny boy and I were unable to participate actively in the puja, but we made for very good passive onlookers. And after the puja ended, all family members got together, and wrote this mantra on plates of rice.
Om hari sree ganapataye namah
avignamastu gurubyoh namah.

We also wrote the first letter of the Malayalam alphabet. With much hilarity, as there was much confusion over new and old letters. but finally, all of us did manage to write, peeping into others' plates where required. A little 'chitting', but in a good cause. :-D

So here goes, once again. May the Goddess bless that this time there is no break.