Virtually Speaking

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Jab we met, it didn’t seem like it was for the first time. She said that I was exactly the way she had imagined, I felt likewise. She is a prolific writer based in U.S.A who prefers Hindi medium. I am comfortable writing in English though I reside in apna desh. We had been following each other on social media. Facebook categorises her as a friend of a friend, actually she is my...
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Smart City

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It was the recurring theme of my thoughts “ Unki kameez hum se safed kaise.” The Sun was brighter, the sky clearer, the water blue-er and the land was cleaner. As I inhaled lungs full of unpolluted air, I wondered where we had gone wrong. Weren’t we the agrarians and they an industrial nation. They a consumerist society, we the wise minimalists with ‘reduce and reuse’ ingrained...
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Trust Issues

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About two decades ago, I was on the way to my sister’s grihapravesh  (house warming). Logistics forced me to get off the car on the highway and take a rickshaw to her house. The colony was new with very few constructed houses. I had been there many before but always by car. With the rickshaw moving slower,  my orientation of time and space got affected and I took a much earlier...
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Bad Weather

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It was to be the perfect culmination of my whirlwind tour of the west coast. The week that had followed this hectic fortnight was relatively sedate with me spending time at my son’s home in San Jose, cooking, cleaning and doing other ‘mummy things’. But I had kept the spirit of adventure alive, ventured into the unknown. Booked an Uber and after two failed attempts  managed to ...
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In Queue

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We were in queue, me and my daughter. It was cold and it was getting dark.  We had missed out on the express passes which would have entitled us to jump the line, so there I was, with an estimated waiting time of two hundred minutes and a daughter who said she couldn’t leave without taking the ride. She has  been a Harry Potter fan since childhood and although she is now past t...
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Holy Cow

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I was visiting a friend who had suffered an accident. He had been riding his scooter on a dimly lit road when he bumped into a black bovine sitting in its middle. The impact tossed him into the air but mercifully he escaped with just a few fractured ribs. As I congratulated him for not breaking his neck, his wife interjected, “Bhagwan ka shukr hai, gaai bach gayee, varna hamara...
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Big Fat Wedding

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I gawked at the invitation. A box full of goodies. Besides its primary purpose of divulging the itinerary, it had four treasure chests with jewelled necklaces. The Gayatri mantra played in the background as I examined them. Sadly, I will have to miss Isha’s wedding because although  I got the card I am not  invited. Like most of us, I received  the Ambani invitation as a forwar...
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Down with Dengue

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As doctors, more for our own sanity,  than anything else, we learn to ignore laments and wails. Every patient feels that he will die of his disease but that is seldom the case. All doctors develop mechanisms to deal with these situations of “Mar gaya re”. Some use humour, some use sympathy, most of us reason it out and, as happened recently, sometimes personal experience guides...
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Sidewalk Saga

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I heard the first rumblings a decade ago. My siesta was rudely disturbed by a loud crash and screech. When I stepped into the balcony to find the source of the commotion I came face to face with the gigantic paws of what is called khooni panja in local parlance. The machine was tearing down the ramp of my neighbour and mine was next inline. Let me elaborate for those who are no...
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Smoke Season

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Maybe I over reacted, I do have a tendency to hit the panic button sooner than later. But there is no denying that the sight made my eyes sting and throat tighten. I have vivid memories of the sickening post Diwali gloom that engulfed us last year. Hence my ‘over’ reaction when I stepped out on the terrace for my ‘morning brew with a view’ and found it strewn with black burnt s...
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