A flash of red


Heavy rain is imminent. Dark, grey clouds are hanging heavy and low in the sky. The gentle breeze ‘that was’ is now gathering momentum, and the leaves are rustling and giggling in anticipation.

I am on my walk, my mind filled with a hundred thoughts, as restless as the leaves. The usual calm that prevails on my walk is missing today. I just accept it and plod on, allowing my thoughts free rein and watching their play.

As I begin my ascent on one of the roads, a flash of red on the pavement catches my eye. From where I am, it looks like a bright red stone or a shiny bit of paper.

When I get closer to this shiny object, I stop in wonder! It is a beautiful petal, reddish-orange in colour, fallen on the grey pavement. Beautiful water droplets adorn this petal, reflecting its vibrant colours even more, and sparkling in the dull evening light.

I am fascinated. The petal lies there, its days over, but still seeking to give joy, still seeking to bring a moment of softness and gentleness to this hard road called life.

I quickly whisk out my phone and capture a picture. The skies open up, and I dash for cover.

I stand under the sheltered walkway, watching the dancing raindrops, the pitter-patter of the rain on the glass ceiling, the swaying plants, the rivulets of water….such beauty.

I think back to my beautiful petal. The rain would have carried away the petal, a drop of bright red floating away in a stream of joy, to places unknown.

The rain peters out. I sigh. I wait awhile. And slowly, the crickets start tuning their instruments for their nightly chorus. Huge silver water drops fall with big plops from the trees. The sky is clear. My mind is bereft of any thought. I walk back home.

Home and life hacks


We are at my mom’s home. My son calls out that he is unable to close the tap in the kitchen. My mom tells him that there is a small hack to solve this problem. She brings out a pair of tongs, idukki, and strikes the tap gently on the side. And lo! problem solved.

We all have these hacks in our homes – to close a window at a particular angle, to know how to balance some old pots and pans on the stove, to use blunt pencils in electric sockets, when there is just a two pin plug that needs to fit into a three pin socket.

We all become proficient at discovering such hacks that make our lives simple and easy, without having to call the handy man every time. Most moms are champions at this!

Many a time, we also know intuitively that we are coming down with a cold, an allergy or a stomach bug. Our bodies are finely attuned to such cues. Sometimes, we can preempt these incidents, and use home remedies or other hacks that work for us.

Courtesy – http://www.123RF.com

So also, we have life hacks. When our mind and intuition tell us about people, make us feel comfortable or uncomfortable, give us good vibes and make us feel positive. Most times, due to the crazily busy lives we lead, we don’t stop to listen to these life hacks. Our minds are so full of thoughts and plans that we miss these cues.

That voice within us that can help us lead better lives – simple things like learning to switch off the tap in the mind, which allows the flow of so many unwanted and irrelevant thoughts, to learn to be mindful, and to focus on things that truly matter.