Thursday, May 29, 2008

Summer Schools

With just a little over a week left for most school vacations to end, parents must be sighing in relief. The vacation seems to be an endless worry for most parents. Even so, the editorial of The Mint's ( a financial daily) weekend supplement Lounge - wrote in detail of the different options parents have for keeping the children occupied this summer. Options are plenty - there are dance and music classes, cricket coaching, swimming, personality training for those as young as 3 years! And the courses cost a small fortune. And working out the logistics leave the parents a harried lot. Sending children to summer schools does have its advantages I guess. There are some new skills that are learnt. For working parents this is a boon. But strangely mothers who do not work also opt to send out their child only so that they have some time for themselves!! That never ceases to surprise me.
I don't think our parents ever worried about keeping us occupied in summer. They were glad to keep us indoors, if they could, to avoid the summer heat. Children rarely ever said they were bored during the vacation. There was so much to do and no TV to distract us.

For me summer vacation meant I could get up a little later than usual. There were piles of books to read. Music blaring from the old transistor radio. The back yard was set up for the kitchen garden. Board games were brought out. Afternoons spent playing carroms and ludo. Stamp and coin collections were updated.
My grandfather's Underwood typewriter was taken out and along with the Pitman typewriting manual I would progress from the first lesson ( asdfg ;lkjh) to the lesson that would begin the use of numbers that were located on the top row of the keys. At this stage, each summer I would lose interest in my typewriting lessons. This continued for at least 6-7 summers. The self training has stood in good stead and my speed at typing (at the computer) without looking at the keys are a result of the practice. But I still need to look at the keys to type in the numbers!


For all those who thought ( including me) that the builders got the name of the apartment all wrong and named it Snow Drop - some facts. First, I think it should be one word - Snowdrop. A flower. A picture I picked off someone's blog for reference

And seems a popular name too for cottages and resorts in Europe. And if the delivery guy at Dominos sniggers next time we give him the address we could enlighten him.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Vintage camera

The office renovation is still going on. Found carelessly kept aside was the old camera - Kodak Pony 135. Don't miss the leather case.

I am not too sure who gave it to us. I googled it and got this link,

I also unearthed a Cannon super 518 which has a bid of $10 on ebay.

I remember the camera my parents had. It seemed to be a kodak brownie - a box camera I guess. The cord had to slung around the neck, the camera held between your hands at around chest or waist level and one had to peer into the lens from the top and the shutter was at the bottom. Many a black and white picture was taken with this camera. The reels were expensive and so was the processing of the pictures. Photographs were taken only on special occasions. It was an expensive hobby. It was a treat if one was allowed to handle the camera and that was rare. And to think that the brownie was a cheap camera introduced by Kodak - sold for a dollar!!
Much later my brother sent the Kodak Instamatic camera from the USA. The camera had no adjustment features - simple to use. And he was kind enough to send the cartridges too. These cameras were also the low cost ones and were not meant for long use. But we Indians ensure that we get most of a product and it was used extensively. However, processing the pictures continued to be expensive.
Of late, I have become shutter happy. Sometimes with the mobile and often with the camera. And the digital camera allows the freedom to experiment without the expense. And though most moments are captured many remain just images on the system and not in print.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Writers block

I don't fancy myself a writer. But I seem to have a writers block when it comes to this blog. I hope it will pass. I have enjoyed updating the blog with various thoughts. Till then.....

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The renovation

It has been two long months since the office renovation began. It all started when we went to order some chairs for our new home. Some work units were spotted and the action began. Delays with material not delivered, carpenters not being available have added to our woes. The summer heat, the dust have added to the agony. Now, the work place is finally taking shape. With the creative guy going berserk in his choice of colours for the interiors, the place looks like a huge playpen! And off and on we generally move back and take in the scene. It is akin to God surveying his creation from above!

I still have not got the chairs

Ma (oh) thoughts - 2

A chat a day keeps the doctor away. The chat with the offspring ( big or small) does wonders to the system.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

ma (oh) thoughts - 1

A new way to analyse somebody's personality - by their ringtone / caller tone.

What do you think?

Friday, May 9, 2008

Lest we forget.....

Some one forced us to make this trip. We were glad we did.
The digicam worked for a few hours and we have these images. We posed for several others. I remember them so vividly and looked forward to seeing them in print, only to discover that the reel had not been inserted properly.

It is ironical that the camera failed to record some of the best times in our life. And both occasions in the month of August!! Posted by Picasa

The Purple squirrel

I am reproducing what I saw in blogs of note - thought it was nice.

Praise for the purple squirrel

Question: Why is this squirrel purple?
Answer (choose one):
1. Because he isn't ripe yet
2. Because his mother threw him in the laundry with all the purple T-shirts
3. Because he fell into a glass of merlot
4. Because he became a serial killer in a vineyard
5. Because Barney the Dinosaur sat on him.
Correct answer: None of the above (but nice try anyway)
A Purple Squirrel is a rare breed, a one-in-a-million job candidate - as I have learned from reading the blogs and web sites of several recruiters and employment specialists. Our company is downsizing and I am making every attempt to get out before the Titanic goes glug-glug for the final time.
So I have learned something new and very useful: A Purple Squirrel is the "PERFECT" candidate who fulfills all the qualifications that describe a job.
In short, a Purple Squirrel is a tough nut to crack. I want to be a Purple Squirrel.

Who would not want to be a Purple Squirrel!!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

The Red Pooler

This is a story of my elder born. She was around 5 months old when she experienced her first Indian summer. And she did not take it too well. She refused to sleep. It took us a while to realise that the increasing temperature had brought about the change in her sleeping habits. A friend helped us get a small cooler ( the person whoever conceived the idea deserves an award) and helped us set it up in our home. Since it was rather rusty it was painted the only colour that was available in the workshop and it turned out to be a nice bright shade of red. The cooler was installed and our little baby never kept us awake that summer. She called it the red pooler and we still often refer to the one we have now in those terms - though this one is a ghastly blue .

We are surviving the hot summer thanks to the cooler. I wonder how long the cooler will last. Not many are to be seen these days. Just like the mats of khus khus that were tied in the doorway ( when we were kids ). It had to be watered every few hours. The smell was heavenly and a slight breeze outside would pass through the mats bringing down room temperature.

All these have made way for the air conditioners. And those used to the modern cooling machines are no longer able to resist a slight rise in temperatures.

Aah the prosperous middle class. This must be the middle class that President Bush is now blaming for the spiralling food prices in the US.
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