Thursday, September 11, 2014

Back to Blogging...I hope

This blog has been dormant too long... I may not have any readers left.  But then, what better to way to record your thoughts and get down to writing.

I was away from home for six months.  When I got back we had a new government at the centre, a new one at the state... which was fine.  I even got back to a new state, which was rather sad.  I have no idea if it will have any impact on the development of the region.  But it seems a part of me has been snatched away.  This place is no longer home.

Which brings me back to the book I am reading , Prison and Chocolate Cake by Nayantara Sahgal, the introductory chapter made so much sense to me.  Especially since all these changes in the past few months upset me.  No one else seems duly concerned, so why me, I wonder ?  At least the author echoes similar sentiments.  The book was initially published in 1954.  And later on in the reprinted version, she elected to keep the footnotes and not unnecessarily update it, which would have meant erasing the signs of the past.   She rightly mentions that updaters have done it with history.  Road names, town names are changed so very frequently. Statues are demolished and replaced.  For what she asks, to say that history began today ? That every generation has only a updated version of events not knowing what one went through to arrive at the present ? To wipe out traces would be to pretend they never existed.

Every time I am away even if it is for a month, I come back to find a building brought down, landmarks vanishing.  And I can find nothing in the city that I can associate with my youth.

Which is why, perhaps, I like to see anything that looks like it has been around a long long time. In London, I saw this milestone that was on one of our regular walking routes .


 So I looked up for it and came across this site - English Heritage - It says - Milestone - Cast Iron with an arched head. Retains the founders mark RU & J Barret 1834.

They even have a Milestone Society that has a record of all of them.

What I like best is, that it is there on the street.  No one has defaced it. No XX loves YY.  No pamphlets pasted over it. It might go unnoticed by many... but  it has been there since 1834 !

I even read that some of the earliest milestones are those erected by the Mughals and they were close to Agra.  Some have tried going in search for it, but the tourist guides have no clue of their location.  I can very well believe that.  Another relic disappeared like so many others.

I will sit and contemplate.  Go back to reading the book.  Like my blog posts, I had put aside books for more light and easy reading.  My success with both will be recorded here. Another post.. another milestone.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Home....

Home. I have lived in my city for over 50 years. A long long time. So, I should not have any hesitation in calling it my home. But off late I have been asking myself where exactly is home? Where do I want to be?

Eight years ago, our two daughters left home within a span of a week . Both got into courses away from home and that was the first time the house seemed empty !( yes the home suddenly seemed just four walls ) It took us a while to get used to the emptiness but there were times to look forward to. Weekends, festivals, term holidays. Then the elder one got married and after a while their careers took them abroad, the younger one took a job in another city. 

But she often flew down. That lasted three years, till she went to the US for her masters last year. 

Now the two of us are like gypsies. While we closed our small office that we had for about 20 years, we have nothing to hold us down. We are content as of now, doing something at our pace so that we can pack our bags whenever the kids need us. We spent time with the elder one in London, when she had a baby last year. While I did miss the familiar faces and places, I felt quite at home. That surprised me !

The younger one graduates in a couple of months. After completion of the course she will return to India for a short period again, till she goes back to take on her new assignment. And this morning, her tickets were booked, and she called to say – Yay ! I am coming home soon.

That was the answer. I know even though the children have their separate lives, they need to return to their roots time and again, even though the visits are not that frequent and for shorter stays. It is after all their home. And ours.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Out of Order

Out of Order is a sculpture by artist David Mach that is on the Old London Road in Kingston upon Thames. It is a series of tumbling telephone boxes that has over the years become an iconic landmark of the place.


Those little red phone booths in the UK are still around, maybe in fewer numbers but still being used.  Just like the red postboxes.  I was pleased to see people posting letters, postmen going on their shifts as early as 8 in the morning.  Little sights that are missing back home.

Kingston upon Thames is a quaint place.  And at their Ancient Market Place one can spend some time browsing, sitting on the stone benches looking at the old buildings and taking in the architecture.

I did a post for Indian Bazaars here about the Market Place.  Do go and explore Kiran's blog for insights about the market places in India and elsewhere. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lasting first times....


There is always a first time.  Just too many to recall and relate. And as you grow older, the first times and the other times that follow, make these the experiences one falls back on. 

The first time I started teaching, I was very nervous.  I asked my father, who had begun his career as a lecturer, for some tips.  He said  “Remember, you definitely know more than the student sitting in front of you, but that does not mean you can fool them”.  “Go prepared and if you are unable to answer any of the questions, do not try to dodge the query or even pull a fast one”.  “There is no harm admitting that you do not know.  But go back the next day, with the answer.  A student will respect you for that”.   That advice held me in good stead in both teaching and non-teaching life

Getting on in years, some tasks are no longer done with ease.  Can be more trying than the first time. I was rather pleased the other day,  when I threaded a slender silk thread through a very fine eye of the needle in dim light.

  Perhaps it was the new pair of glasses!  But to me it did feel like an achievement of sorts.   Like a first time without depending on others.

There will continue to be some firsts.  Like the first time I made a snowman with my daughter a couple of months ago.  


So very enjoyable.  All those Enid Blyton books, the Dennis the Menace and Archie comics that we read as kids conjuring different images all took life on a cold bleak wintry day.  And then coming back to a hot cup of tea with some cupcakes.  I was a ten year old all over again.

There will be other firsts… until there is a last.  Amen. 

PS - This was for the SRA group - the subject being - The First Time

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Trying my hand at verse...

As I was blog hopping I happily landed at SRA's blog.  SRA and friends have started a group on facebook that has a common objective of writing on a particular theme each week.  That was just what I needed to get back to blogging.  I was also exposed to different styles of thinking and writing.  It got me trying my hand at a bit of poetry.  Something I had not done for a very long time.  An edited version ....


What Nonsense !

I cannot do with all this fuss
I went to meet  the Octopus
Extra arms I need to borrow
To multi-task from ‘morrow

And so I return with four more pairs
Slowly climbing up the stairs

This will make my work so easy
The kitchen top will ne’er be greasy
Cut, braid and pack  in one go
The arms will glide in graceful flow

Alas, co-ordination was such a strain
The cheese sandwich went down the drain
The wiping mop went into the box
And lass’ braids were tied with socks

The Creator watched this with disdain
To think I equipped them with better brain !

So much thought in their design
Yet,  all they do is cry and whine
 And, what a waste of the effort  I took
For them to while away time on facebook ?

Monday, January 14, 2013

Back to regular blogging... hopefully in 2013

The last posting here was seven months ago.   But then that was 2012.  The new year is upon us.  I have not made new year resolutions for a very long time.  I remember as a kid ( and now I am a new grand-mother, so that seems ages ago ) I would get a diary at the beginning of the year and resolve to write each day.  I think it hardly lasted a week.  Either it was just an ordinary day, or something too personal to write about.  And I think that is exactly what happened to my blog.  Too much happened last year !  Too much to share.

It is not that I stayed away from the virtual world.  Far from it.  And funnily I was more active on my food blog.  Strange.. since I am not really fond of cooking !  But finding so many food blogs and like-minded people sharing recipes made what might otherwise have been another boring chore a lot more interesting.

There were many decisions we had to make in 2012  the impact of which, we will know in 2013.  We shut our small sized enterprise, our younger one went abroad to do her LLM, and the elder one had a baby !  Right now away from home, we return to India in March and move to our own apartment.  It is not the dream home I always wanted, but I am wiser and understand I can make it make it my own little space.

As of now,  I cannot think too far ahead.  Our lives are focused now around this little being who came into our lives 10 weeks ago.  And I am content.

More resolutions (apart from regular blogging ) I shall make as the year progresses.  I find the mid-year ones are more realistic.  And achievable.

Cheers ! 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

The dying art of conversation... huh?

This is what many are 'talking about' - the death of conversation.  In a world that is increasingly turning to texting, tweeting and chatting online.  Well connected, but in silence. Who would have thought it possible?  People talking without speaking, People hearing without listening. 

(source www:dailypeoplecartoon.com)

At home, time and again, we have stopped the elder one in her conversation, to tell her to get to the point, and to skip the details (sorry S!) . She is a great one for that.  Thankfully it has not stopped her, ever.  But now, if we are to go by the words of the  renowned psychologist and professor at MIT - Sherry Turkle - it is important to listen to each other, even if it is in the most boring bits  because it is often in unedited moments, that we reveal ourselves to one another.

Professor Turkle says students have mastered the art of eye contact while they are busy texting! Nothing new.  How many times have our children ( I am without doubt speaking for all parents) nodded their heads at appropriate moments, blinked, changed facial expressions to give you the impression that they are hanging on to every word  said, while their fingers dexterously typed out long messages.  To think that we spent hours trying to get them to hold a pencil and learn to write!  This particular fine skill of texting came naturally to them!

Turkle has also coined a new term - the Goldilocks effectnot too close, not too far, just right , keeping in touch with so many people yet to keep them at bay - at a distance they can control - .  For most youngsters, human relationships are messy,and they move from conversation to connection.  And over a period of time stop caring.  They forget the art of conversation, and skills associated with it.  Of being patient and empathising. Always in the company of 'friends' - if we cannot be alone even for a while it will only make us more lonely.  And that is a scary thought.


I guess it is due to the numbers in India, our world has not fallen silent.  And we are a nation of noisy people.  But surprisingly, when I took a journey by train some time ago it was so different.  I remember how much fun it used to be earlier. The noise, the hawkers, the conversations, sharing of meals.  But this time, I found it strangely silent.  Only the hum of the airconditioning.  Almost all were busy with their smart devices (I think I was the only one with an 'antique' piece). Playing games, on facebook, or tweeting. And being constantly warned not to accept food from strangers, we all settled down to the boring railway catered food and ate in silence.

Another time, I was awaiting my turn at the billing section of a hospital.  A lady barged in before me.  I thought I should protest, but she looked distraught.  She was hunched over the counter and I thought she must be having a tough time and after all it only meant a delay of a few minutes.  But it took longer and curiosity finally got the better of me and I peered over to see the cause of her despair.  But lo! I found her face inches away from her phone and she was playing a game.  I guess the pained expression shifted to my face.

It is nice to think most of those of my generation still pick up a phone or drop by to have a conversation.  Not just someone who 'likes' or 'pokes'.  And thank god once again for S and her incessant banter. 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

It's Not Important to Touch Your Toes

(Pic - cartoonstock.com)

All these years I have pushed myself to touch my toes.  Till a fortnight ago.  I was lying down on my new green yoga mat.  I always feel it is necessary to have these little pretty accessories that serve as an impetus to get going on an exercise routine . Well anyway, to get back to the supine position on the yoga mat...  I got up and bent forward to touch my toes.  And I found that my hand did not proceed beyond my calves.  I mean I could touch the toes the day before. So what was wrong today? As I was trying to push myself to make the phalanges meet, I realised it was absolutely unnecessary. Why pull a hamstring on a day the body does not want to make the extra effort?  And after that believe me, exercising is a lot more fun.  And no stress.  And just being consistent with the routine is the secret of a successful workout.

So remember, It's not Important to Touch your Toes...unless of course you are a fitness trainer.

I have even gone as far as to think this would make a good title for a book.  And I am sure it will atleast attract a few eyeballs at a store. But for someone who has not been too regular posting here, I know  the book will never see the light of day.  But that has not stopped me from thinking about the sequels.  For instance..

It is not important to be size zero ( unless you are Kareena Kapoor)

It is not important to be a perfect wife ( it will only make your husband lazy)

It is not important to be a perfect mother ( your kids will be brats anyway and yet grow up fine)

And so on... It could be a hit.. remember the Dummies series?

Ponder over it.. perfection is fine, but is really necessary if the end result can be achieved without the strain?

What do you think?


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Of books and thoughts...

I am not one of those who follows the political scene very closely.  Domestic or international.  Not that I am totally ignorant either.  I usually skim through political commentaries and get by with the headlines and news reports and occasionally the odd programme on the television.

But it is slowly changing.  I realise we have a lot to be thankful for.  Despite the scams, the corruption, and our politicians.

The book that first brought this change in my thinking and perception was The Kite Runner  by Khaled Hosseni .  I remember my brother was excited when he heard the news on the radio about the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. This was so long ago in 1979.  He did try to explain what it meant to the rest of the world, but it was lost on me.This book, now, brought back those moments.  The story itself is very moving, and though the characters hold center-stage, the disruption of what was once a peaceful life in Kabul stands out.  His description of the country does not match the scenes we now see on TV.  I can only think of the dusty roads, the bombed buildings, the tanks, the guns, soldiers, masked men .. like a ghost town.  Could Afghanistan have really been the peaceful, beautiful place that Hosseni describes in the early chapters of his book?

Coincidentally the next book I picked up was Benazir Bhutto's autobiography - Daughter of the East. I had no real intention of reading the book. It was more than 400 pages and the print was tiny.  And the Bhutto family did not hold interest. However, the first few pages were enough to ensure that I read the book from cover to cover.  While the account would definitely be biased.. I mean which autobiography wouldn't? I found myself totally immersed in the book.  It is evident that she had enjoyed a good life till her father was imprisoned.  He was her hero.  She dwells upon the achievements in his reign. And how all that changes after the military coup.  The family could have fled and lived a comfortable life in exile. But I guess once you have a taste of power it can be difficult to live without it. That she endured innumerable detentions and remained sane is admirable.  Here again there is mention of Afghanistan and the role of the US in arming the Afghan guerillas to fight the Soviets, and then abandoning the region altogether when they retreated.  And the subsequent rise of terrorism in the area.   However one sided the writing may be, there is no doubt that Ms Bhutto was indeed a great storyteller just as much as her famed oratorical skills.  We never will know whether another term of her as the Prime Minister would have brought development and peace once again to a strife-torn country.  Or would it have been a continuation of the military regime in a new garb?

These two books have made me aware of our neighbouring countries. Of  petty politics of the super powers.  Of senseless wars that are being fought.  Of the children in the Palestine, Syria, Iraq..  How long will they live with the sound of gun shots and bombs ringing in their ears?

Friday, February 3, 2012

In Rewind Mode


The day the music died….(To those from my time, it would be a song by Don McLean and for the younger generation maybe the lines would still be a familiar Madonna song)  

But that is how we felt for a long time after WorldSpace closed their operations in India.  It used to be a routine.  Early morning devotional music – Carnatic and Hindustani that slowly progressed to a faster beat for the exercise hour and then to Farishta for old Hindi songs. The day went by. 

And then there was no music at all.  We put away the satellite receiver.  Our 15 year old Sony music system was in a bad shape.  From disuse. For a while we managed with the music channels on TV and we were only listening to the latest Bollywood music.  An occasional good song, but constant Sheila and Munni can get so tiring.  V thought we had enough of it all and lugged the music system to the service center.  

It came back a fortnight ago with the FM radio, CD and audio-casette player in working condition. We found ourselves removing the carton that had not seen the light of day for almost three years. A box filled with memories.  Of age old audio-cassettes!! The thought of donating the tapes had occurred to me , but I had found no takers.  All had moved on to newer technology. The younger one asked me to check on Amazon.  You might just get lucky, she said.  Some ancient articles can bring in good money. But no such luck.  Everyone seemed to think they just had to be junked.  And so the carton remained.  Thank god for that!

After spending a whole day sorting them out, we have boxes (and more boxes) of songs - in all languages - English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu.  Classical music - western and Indian. Vocal and instrumental. And the tapes in good condition too.  With music to last a life time.

What was even better was the discovery of the tapes of my children reciting nursery rhymes, slokas and a whole lot of baby talk that their grandfather had recorded.  

And yet another surprise.  We had met MS Subbalakshmi when she was no longer giving public performances. No mobile phone cameras, no digital cameras to capture the moment.  But for this ...

And now I get up to the sound of music...and a cup of tea (yes, I am not the first one to awaken) . What could be better than that?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Rise and Fall.....

I wonder what he would be thinking, if he were to look around and see the statues that were up one day and down the next.

What got me thinking about statues was the recent news item about a man being arrested in the UK for ‘illegally’ bringing the ‘butt’ of the statue of Sadam Hussein from Iraq.   This was a 2ft bronze lump that he saved from being melted down after it was toppled by the US marines in 2003. He brought it back with him and now Iraq wants it returned. They claim it is their cultural history (??).   

But(t) it raised several questions in my mind.  About the statues of the past and those of the present.  I am sure the sculptors of yore put in a lot of thought and worked to make it a piece of art.  They chose subjects that were worthy of their skill.  Mythological figures, of kings and queens and of great leaders.


The living had no thoughts of transfering their image in stone or metal. That was unheard of.  Did Madam Tussauds wax models of living celebrities bring about the change?  Anyway I knew Sadam had one only after it was brought down.  And of course, recently in the news for all the wrong reasons, are that of Mayawati.

While I grew up, apart from the statues that were left behind by the British (as they took away priceless pieces of art) , we had the occasional statue of Mahatma Gandhi or Sardar Patel.  It was after Jawaharlal Nehru passed away that some of his statues came up. But these were few.  It is only lately, with petty politicians aplenty that statues are put up with public money of those who have made little or no contribution to society.

Statues to me are a cause of ire.  We have one right at the beginning of the lane. Of that of Rajiv Gandhi.  It served as a landmark while giving directions to the house.  All that changed once Congress came back to power.  At every occasion a dias is put up overnight, the ‘leaders’ congregate, flower garlanding ceremonies are planned for the busiest part of the morning leaving all office-goers stranded.  And for us, we are stuck in our lane with no way out,.  All I do is fret and fume.  Thoughts of toppling it down have also entered my mind. 
And it is therefore no surprise that statues are the targets of mob fury and political vengeance.  Who can forget the destruction of the statues of The Buddha by the Taliban?  Well, anyway the BJP, SP,  have said that if they come back to power in UP, they would auction the statues of Mayawati.


It appears that statues are no longer meant for posterity.  They are to be toppled, destroyed, covered or even auctioned!
 But I would think, all it takes is a pigeon.  And as the fictional character David Brent of the BBC mockumentary ‘Office’ said You just have to accept that some days you are the pigeon, and some days you are the statue.  


 And Mayawati and others like her would well do to remember that !

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Be Indian, Buy Indian - Abroad


We came back from our trip to the UK with two shopping bags.  My daughter insisted I take them.  She said it would be useful since there was a ban on plastic in the city.  It was priced at 2 pounds each.  They are neat.  They  hold large quantities.  Easy to carry since the handles are designed so that they do not hurt the palm.  After repeated use, feeling pleased with the purchase and thinking it was worth the money, I examined the bag to find this tiny tag stating – ethically made in India. 

Take a look at this fragrance warmer my brother got me from the US.   It looks beautiful, the work, as in the case of the jute bag, was neat – no jagged edges.  I said aloud, such a beautiful piece, why can’t it be made here.  And there it was, hidden away a small etching.. made in India !

While I am glad our goods are finding their way abroad, I wonder why  inferior goods and export rejects finding their way into our stores?  Why cannot we be more quality conscious and push our manufacturers to give us the same goods that they export?

Better quality basmati rice, jute and leather bags, good quality handlooms and handicrafts, superior apparel, better alphonso mangoes, specialty tea  -  all find their way out of India.  We pay probably the same price for goods of lesser quality. 

It is not as if the higher priced goods do not find a market here.  One visit to the supermarket and you have shelves with  poor quality Kashmiri Apples, shrivelled Nagpur Oranges competing with expensive Australian Kiwi , California grapes,  Thai Rambutan and Chinese apples all ridiculously priced.  And there are buyers for them too.  It seems as if the display of poor quality Indian fruits with the better looking imported goods is intentional.

 ‘Yeh export quality hai’ is what the sales guy will tell you when he wants to push a product and  wants to justify the price he has quoted.  Export quality – that is to say only the best can be exported.  The rest is for use at home.  Are we not discerning enough or are we satisfied with sub-standard goods? When the best products from abroad find buyers here, why is it that the best made in our country is not available to the same buyer? 

Do we need to shop abroad to bring our own ’quality’ goods back home? 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Run with your mind!

                                                *
I read an article where the author, Prakash Iyer, narrates an interesting story told to him by a retired Brigadier.

The Brigadier was an engineer who had joined the army.  Unlike his peers, he was one of the few not from the National Defence Academy, and therefore did not have the usual physical training they were used to.  One of his first tests of endurance was to run a distance of ten miles. While the rest were doing it with relative ease, he was struggling and after a while he was close to giving up, when he heard his Commanding Officer shout out - Come on , young man, up till now you have been running with your legs.  Now run with your mind!  The words didn't just work that one time, it remained with him for the rest of his life.

The article appeared in a Career magazine. To stress the point that success in life is not just by talent and physical ability.  Now, why do I need to read one of those?  Maybe I don't, not at this stage, where I have no career change to make.  But I still like to browse through them. They are quite inspiring.  And I believe if something works well at the office, it will work at home too.

While the article was meant to inspire the young to seek bigger avenues in life and not give up in their struggle, I have decided to apply it to my now present obsession of getting my weight back on track. Over the last 30 years, I have gained over 10 kgs.  So many factors, marriage, children, middle age, and a growing sweet tooth.  But the last three kgs beyond the 10 kilos had me on full alert.

My younger one, who normally would have been sprawled on the sofa in the living room was energetic when home  on a short holiday.  It had to with the kick-boxing classes that she was attending. And she took me under her control.  I will teach you some warm-up exercises, she said. As far as I was concerned 'warm- up' meant something one does to 'warm-up' right? Some up and down neck movements, some shoulder and arm exercises.  I was all ready to start.

Like everything else, the word had taken a new meaning.  There was some running, some kicking, stretches, toe-touches, crunches..... and all for a fixed time duration that seemed to stretch to eternity.  It helped, the diwali sweets did not push the needle of the weighing scale to the right anymore. It was static.  That was some achievement.

I am still at it... increasing the number slowly and after I read the article I push myself to do those extra few crunches.  And the needle on the scale is slowly tilting to the left!

.. it helps to run with your mind.

*(image source - Profimedia.com)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Reality cooking and cooking reality

I am hooked to reality cooking shows.  Or any food show for that matter. Vigorous stirring, basting, a swirl, a toss and that touch of beautiful garnish.  The fancy kitchen equipment, blenders, sauces with even fancier names.

Anyway, work can throw some strange surprises. And here I was helping organise a cooking contest for a publication. Not like the reality shows that we see on TV where you hear the chef scream ' the clock is ticking away... nine, eight, seven. ...' So exciting, so much pressure. But this was different. Cooking had to be completed at home. The evaluation at the venue, by a chef.

I offered to help with the registration of participants. I thought it couldn't be difficult.  I did not foresee the amount of time or the energy required.. and it has indeed been an experience.  For one, we had to deal with  women who called, messaged and mailed constantly. 

Each call was different.  There were some wonderful ladies.  They wasted no time. Asked for relevant information and were brief and to the point.  There were others who just wanted to prolong the conversation.  It seemed they wanted someone to talk to, and it did not matter if you were a willing listener or not. A lady recited a poem.  Another wrote a long mail and said she was a woman of many talents.  Could she also sing at the contest after presenting her dish?

We even had a male who called and argued that it was unfair that only women could participate.  Don't you think men make better cooks?  I am sure they do.  Especially when they venture into the kitchen to make an exotic dish occasionally. 

There were students, housewives, working women, retired professionals and very senior citizens. And for them it was not just an ordinary cooking contest. Believe me it is a competitive world out there. I began to understand the term  'insider information'. The conversation would go on fine, and suddenly a change in tone, lowering of voice... and then the question.. how many had registered? Which category has the least number? Which dish won the prize at the last week's contest? What stands a better chance? Do you think I should make this particular dish and so on... It was not easy handling this type.  Now, I can also fathom the pressures on those in the stock market or sporting world.  Some kind of dish-fixing this?

The enthusiasm of the women just put me to shame. If only it were contagious! I can twist an old phrase - you can lead a woman to the kitchen, but to can't always make her cook.  And in my case that's reality.. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Not So Long Ago....

It did not seem so long ago... when we stood under the giant tree at the college. Giggling and gossiping.  Especially since we were doing it again..thirty years later..

A friend in the US mailed to say she was visiting town. Could we all meet?  And we did.  One came in from Bangalore, another from Kolkata.  Then there were calls to all those who were in town.  And a hectic itinerary was planned for three days in a row.  And on one of those days we were back again where it all began.

Our teachers had retired. And instead we found a few of our classmates and seniors occupying the staff rooms that we would so hesitantly enter as a student. This time we walked in with a new found confidence, ignoring the poor attender who tried his best to find out if we had a prior appointment.  We barged into classrooms and labs.  And none seemed to mind.  I guess our happiness was infectious.  Soon, there were more smiles.  Students offered to take our pictures as we posed in familiar nooks.  A friend even danced in the auditorium oblivious to the amused looks.

It reminded me of the old Carpenters song... Yesterday once more.. those were such happy times and not so long ago, and we wondered where they'd gone, but they're back again....

From college, we trooped into homes and met the mothers who had welcomed us way back.  They did so once again.  So obviously delighted to see us.

It seemed as if we had wound back the clock.   A friend got a call from her son who wanted to know if she had forgotten he existed!! That reminded the rest of us to get back to the present.  We all parted  with the promise that we would meet again.  Soon.

Going back in time, I think erased a few wrinkles too.  That could be my imagination... but nothing could have been more rejuvenating! 
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