Conversation

my favourite kind of conversation is one

where two are silent and connected

not the kind where two are together

unhappy and disconnected

my favourite kind of conversation is one

where we can stretch our legs across a comfy chair

listen to bocelli reading poetry

then share

what’s on our mind

with no fear of judgement, no strife

just a meaningful conversation

about life

 

 

 

 

 

Finally

I finally turned 50 this year! I used to wonder what that might feel like…I can tell you now – it feels GREAT. I am filled with gratitude for this wonderful life, full of blissful and painful moments. While I am yet to see all the continents, I am fortunate I have had a chance to live in the east and west. I spent the first quarter of my life in Malaysia and India and the next quarter in Canada. In 2015, I went back to India and lived and worked there. I have a new appreciation for my roots. Having my two teen boys with me made it extra special…I got to see my world with my own eyes, and theirs. Coming back to Canada (beautiful British Columbia) in 2017, made me realize how special this place is and how deeply I am connected to it too. So, at 50, what has my life taught me? Many important lessons, but here’s a short list:

  • Don’t complicate life, keep it simple

  • Don’t forget to forgive and move on
  • When in doubt, be kind
  • Find or create work you love doing
  • Be prepared to learn from everyone, especially children
  • Important words – thank you, love you, please, sorry, awesome
  • Don’t miss any opportunity to travel and have new experiences
  • Talk to strangers, they could be friends after the first hello
  • Dare to love deeply and unconditionally 
  • Live in the moment and always, choose to be happy

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! STAY WELL AND BE HAPPY!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Communal

Growing up in Kerala, I could not wait for my school holidays. It was time for  “communal” holidays. My relatives from from various parts of India showed up and we gathered at my father’s  thravadu (family home) in a small town called Palghat. From dawn to dusk, kids played, sang songs and climbed fruit trees. In the summer, eating raw mangoes with a dash of salt and chilly powder was a daily occurance, until one got sick. Throughout the day we were fed delicious treats and seasonal fruits (mangoes, jackfruit, gooseberries, sapota and tender coconut) by our elders and urged to drink lots of coconut water. In the summer, running off to the pond to take a cold dip among lotus flowers was exciting. It got even more exciting if one ended up getting bitten by small fish or saw a small snake swimming in the pond. Things got a bit tense if cousins decided to push a non-swimmer into the pond hoping while in distress, one would end up swimming. At times, it was succesful, but not always. These holidays not only brought us together as a large family, it gave us an opportunity to catch up with births, deaths, weddings, good and bad news. It was time to show off one’s new spouse too. It was also time for match-making. Well meaning aunts and uncles would go out of their way to convince parents of young men and women, that the time had come for their children to tie the knot. The more well off families gave the elders money to ensure everyone was taken care of. Families who were going through financial difficulties found themselves in a good situation where they got gifts they desperately needed – clothes footwear, and groceries to take back home. Each holiday was a happy memory of connecting with family…I miss the “communal” holidays…

Living in vain…

“The Poetry of Emily Dickinson”  is one of my favourite holiday season reads (thanks to my son who bought it recently). So many beautiful verses in this gem of a book. I was really moved by this verse, I just finished reading:

If I can stop one heart from breaking,

I shall not live in vain;

If I can ease one life the aching,

Or cool one pain,

Or help one fainting robin

Unto his nest again,

I shall not live in vain.

Emily Dickson’s sentiments are reflected in one of Dalai Lama’s latest tweets:

“Within each of us exists the potential to contribute positively to society. Although one individual among so many on this planet may seem too insignificant, it is our personal efforts that will determine the direction our society is heading.”

Living a life with purpose means different things to different people…at the end of the day, I think it is all about lifting others up, when they are down and taking the time to appreciate life and express gratitude.

What Makes a Good Life?

In the last few months since returning to Vancouver from overseas, I have realised how fast and furiously our world is changing. There’s disruption in every sphere of our lives and the future of work is at a crossroads. In the midst of all of all of this – people continue to ponder on the pursuit of happiness which seems more elusive than ever.

Dr. Waldinger’s  TED talk, titled “What Makes a Good Life? Lessons from the Longest Study on Happiness,” in 2015,  has been viewed more than 13,000,000 times and is worth watching.  It’s good to be reminded that what matters most is meaningful relationships and connections to communities.