Monthly Archives: March 2017

A woman’s best friend

A woman’s best friend is her handbag. Mine definitely is. My handbag bears witness to my life and carries bits and pieces of me, wherever I go. 


Picture courtesy – Clipart Kid

My handbag is very faithful. It has never disappointed me when I have sought something from its insides – though I may not have found  what I was actually looking for.

My handbag can multi-task, and can carry books, phones, chargers, colouring books, thousands of ‘things to do’ lists, discount coupons, frayed tickets, rubber bands, hairclips, combs, lipstick, compact, face tissue, band aids, a mini pharmacy, sun glasses, water bottles, keys, vague looking bits of crumpled paper that must have had some value in another era of my life.

My handbag has helped assuage ‘that’ crazy hunger that catches me between big meals, by supplying biscuits or wafers and the ocassional health-bar. It has provided books to write down chores or ‘things to do’ lists – that seem to play hide and seek with women in their forties.

It has provided materials to distract my children, when they suddenly decided that they couldn’t stand each other a moment longer.

From the outside, my bag looks elegant. On the inside chaos reigns, as the law of Once In Never Out is in full force.  The bag is like a sedimentary rock, layer upon layer of my life piled one on top of the other.

My bag knows me and my needs. It knows that I may come looking for an old bit of paper or a rubber band or an oatmeal cracker at any time. Some violent shaking of the bag and some patience is all that’s required!

What would really help deepen this relationship is to have a HPS (Handbag Positioning System) which can tell me, with a mere swipe of my phone, ‘what is where’ in my handbag and provide an inventory and map to what’s inside.

A lazy mom and a busy ant

It is a Saturday evening. School holidays start in just 72 hours. Yippee!

Lassitude has set in. The kind that only a mom would understand; the laziness of not having to complete chores and run tight schedules of pick ups and drops, of lunch boxes and classes. I smile as I sit in front of my computer trying to write.I am in a relaxed frame of mind after all. I am waiting for the words to flow and clamour for attention at my fingertips.

As I wait for the deluge of words, my eyes are drawn to a scurrying movement on my laptop keyboard. I see that it is a tiny ant with a small piece of thread in its mouth, streaking across the keyboard, as if he has a flight to catch.


I am fascinated by this creature, who is always so busy and so full of purpose. All ants seem to be busy all the time. They seem to know the value of time. The ant is probably shuddering at how I am seated, sloth-like, and not putting my time to good use.

The ant looks for a way out of the keyboard. He rushes this way and that. After a while, he disappers from view.

He is one determined little ant, and I am sure he made it home in time, to put the black thread to good use. Bye bye little ant.

Kid’s perspective

It is that time of the year, when my kids will move from one grade to another in school. But before they move, there is a two week peiod of assessments that they will go through.

So, this morning, my son was awake quite early and in my eagerness to get a head start, I said to him, “Let’s start studying right now. After all, ’tis the early bird that catches the worm, and you will be done before lunch and then you can have fun.”


Picture courtesy – Clipart kid.com
My son looked at me and asked, “Mom, have you ever thought of the poor worm and what this means to him? I feel like one now.”

I burst out laughing. Have never looked at it from the worm’s point of view. 

Tropizens 

I keep reading blogs that talk about Spring; and am reminded of the animated movie Bambi, where all the animals in the jungle celebrate Spring by breaking into a song-dance routine. Spring – when flowers bloom, when butterflies flutter, and when there is green everywhere!

Sigh! I can only read or watch movies about Spring. Living in the tropics as I do, the word ‘seasons’ is only useful when teaching my kids about seasonal changes in other parts of the world.

Where we live we have only three ‘seasons’ – warm, very warm and unbearably warm.

Our bodies are conditioned to easily handle temperatures of 33 deg and above.  We are used to thunderstorms and rainfall almost every day.

I am a Tropizen – a citizen of the tropics. Why am I saying this? This is because, like any other group of people, Tropizens exhibit certain behaviour patterns.

Take for example our handling of cold weather. Tropizens grow brrrrrrr…if the aircon temperature is set at anything below 24 deg. We feel cold in airports.

Imagine this – our family of Tropizens went on a trip to New Zealand a few years ago. It was in December, which is summer time in New Zealand. The internet told us that the temperature would be between 18 to 20 degrees during the day and around 12 deg at night. Rattlleeeee….!

For a Tropizen, that is winter..Brrrrr. We stocked up on caps, scarves, mufflers, gloves and thermals.

Picture courtesy – Cartoonstock.com
When we landed in Christchurch after our long flight, the fresh air seemed invigorating, initially. However, in a few hours we were wrapped up in our wollens.

As it was our first day, we decided to take a walk around the neighbourhood. The locals were enjoying their summer in cotton clothes, and were probably shocked to see eight people walking down the road, covered from head to toe in warm clothes.  They must have wondered if we were headed to some camp in the Antarctic.

Most restaurants had their tables set outside. People enjoyed tall glasses of drinks, with ice cubes tinkling in them. The thought of ice cubes made us chatter. We wanted hot coffee!

We were probably the only few people who asked to be seated indoors.

But at home, in the tropics,  we can survive the heat and humidity without batting an eyelid. We can guzzle big buckets of cold juice…with clinking ice cubes! We can take on lightning and thunderstorms, and anything else.

For us, comfort starts at 33 deg!

Mom observations

On my walk this morning, I saw a four year old girl and her mother. They were holding hands and were probably walking to school. The little girl was singing a nursery rhyme and the mom was singing along with gusto, totally oblivious to her surroundings.

I smiled, as I remember having done the same thing with both my kids. When the kids are younger, there is a lot of give and take in conversation, shared secrets, goofy smiles and tender hands that cling to yours. The universe then is a small place, for your child and you. Lots of time to spend, to read aloud, to bake, to colour and to carry out all those stress-free fun activities.


Image courtesy – Clipartfest

But during those years, every mom is desperate for some time out to do what she likes. However, it is only when you realize that the clingy four year old is now a strappy teenager that you want to relive those days again.

As the children grow and become independent, motherhood becomes more of an observation process. By this, I don’t mean that we are not involved. It only means that the children come to us only when they need something.

Displays of love are met with embarrassed smiles or  just a quick hug. The pi-chart that is their world shows a fat slice for friends and other activities.

As mom observers, we often wonder and sigh at this sudden passage of time. The love only gets stronger and deeper, but cannot seek expression in an impromptu nursery rhyme or colouring sheet anymore.

This love is expressed through an ocassional hug,  helping with chores, rebellion, coffee sessions and conversations in the kitchen.