Thursday, January 21, 2010

Welcome Year 2010!

A very happy year 2010 to all of you.

I’ve taken a long time to post anything mainly because my daughter and children were here and I was having fun time with them. They however left on the 15th and my much neglected health started clamoring for attention. A bad cold needs to be pampered and not ignored. I did just that and it simply wouldn’t go. Not that it has gone now but having taken notice of it and treated it with respect it is now subdued and has agreed to lie low and leave in good time.

Winter has been severe after a long time. We had almost forgotten that Jamshedpur could be this cold but right when global warming was being discussed at international levels the northern part of India was being treated to an intense cold spell. We thought that it would get warm after Pongal but it didn’t. May be a few weeks more and we’ll be complaining of excess heat!

Cold weather is fine if one had someone to make hot tea and bring it to your bedroom and you could cuddle up in your bed with a novel in hand, soft music playing, and munching fry – ums/peanuts. Here, the husband has to be attended to as if he were a schoolboy, so what if he makes coffee in the morning!

I sometimes wish he wouldn’t make my coffee. Honestly. He makes it at 5:15 in the morning and starts waking me up saying that it would turn cold and wouldn’t taste as good if re – heated. Now I have to decide whether to wake up in the cold weather just to drink coffee or re – heat it later and be happy to drink sub standard coffee. To add to my misery my coffee maker can talk and keeps commenting on the quality of his preparation and most of the time I get up, but heat up my coffee that by now has become lukewarm.

My daughter asks me why I cannot insist on making my own coffee later. I too wonder why I don’t. I have no reason but perhaps deep down in my heart I prefer to have coffee prepared by him. Division of labor, I suppose. Like folding bed linen was my job till I stated working. Since I had to leave early for work he took over and now it has become his job. When he is out of town and I have to fold the single bed sheet used by me and put away my pillow, I find myself wishing that he’d return fast!

Yesterday was Basant Panchami and in our parts of India we celebrate Saraswati Puja on this day. I am always in admiration of the Goddess Saraswati who represents knowledge and learning. In contrast to the image of Durga who promises divine justice Saraswati seems to tell us that an intelligent mind can tackle adverse situation and justice would automatically follow. And justice may not always mean retribution. Somehow the principle of ‘an eye for eye and tooth for tooth’ seems wrong. The actual and long lasting justice would be to create a change in the minds of people. Correct me if I am wrong.

Let us therefore make a wish at the onset of a New Year.

Let us wish that we have the courage to say NO to practices like greasing palms and giving dowry just to find the easy way out. It is not easy to go against the tide. But 5 years back we, in our college, did just that. We were to benefit by a higher scale and the notice had reached our office. Those belonging to our group from other college paid the concerned dealing assistant in the university Rs. 500/- each to get it implemented. We resisted. The clerk would send extra money but ‘forget’ to mention how it may be utilized in the covering letter. In the following month the college would be directed to pay us the difference but money would be short. This went on for a year when a particularly strict IAS officer took over acting VC of the university. Unable to explain why a particular group from a specific college was being denied the scale the clerk quietly released the money out of fear of action against him. So a tough helmsman can make a difference is what we learnt. We again hear that the 6th pay recommendations would be implemented only if a certain amount is coughed up. Many in my college want to pay up. But I insist that we wait till the budget is presented to see how the university is going to explain why we are being denied the benefit. Patience is required and by god’s grace I have plenty of it. And the fact my colleagues pay heed to my words is comforting. I do hope I continue to be loved and regarded in the same manner till retirement.

A very happy year 2010 to all of you and do continue to pamper me because I am soon entering my 60th year and may soon go through the second childhood phase!


Ugich Konitari said...

HHG, A very happy , healthful, and successful 6th PC new year to you ! Hope you are over the worst of the cold, though I guess there is still a bit of winter to get over in the North. And I am just wondering why you dont have the coffee kept in a thermos once its made, so you get it piping hot....

I am just amazed at the temerity of the University chap handling your 6th PC stuff. You have taken a principled stand, and things will definitely work out soon.

Good wishes to you on your approaching 60th , and from one retiree to a prospective one, Welcome to the club, and its fun !

Sumana said...

Wish you a very happy 2010, happy sankranthi/pongal. Now it is a different story, but there were a few days long back where the hubby made tea early mornings on the weekends. Though the tea was sub standard (am hoping he does not read this ;))I used to be waiting for the tea.

Heathcliffs Girl said...

louwed the coffee dilemma parts :)
you write very well..and a happy 2010.

Anonymous said...

Happy 2010 to you! I love your posts, I like their simplicity and maturity.
May you have a wonderful year and be blessed with good health, love and luck.

Usha said...

I hope the cold passes soon and the weather gets better in time for you to party on the 26th - my prayers and wishes for a long and healthy life to you my dear friend. As for the second childhood you have never allowed your inner child to disappear which is a wonderful thing of course.

Shruti said...

happy 2010 to u too!
why doesnt hubby like cold mornings? Its such a punishment not being able to enjoy one under the blanket :)
wow.. u'r going to be more fun after u turn 60! :)

Indy said...

A very Happy New year to you too! This is the first time I'm commenting here on ur lovely blog! I love the way you write! :)How sweet that your husband makes you coffee in the morning, and yes, they do go on about their "skill"!!!Haha!

Wish you all the very best for the coming year!

Hip Grandma said...

Ugich:If i give him the option of keeping the coffee in the thermos he will still find reason to wake me up :-))!

Sumana:Thank you. And why doesn't he make your tea now?Nothing like being treated to coffee/tea in the morning.

Heathcliffs Girl:Welcome here and thanks.It would have been best if he waited for me to get up and then prepared coffee1 but I think that is asking for too much.

preetischronicle:Thank you and I love it when the likes of you comment.

Usha;I too hope this chilly weather passes and I am able to resume my long morning walks. My husband hates to go alone because we have a lot of talking to do when we amble back.

shruti:Thanks and this husband of mine is a no nonsense person and an early riser on top of it.i too wish he'd remain in bed at least for an hour longer in winter. even if he does not wake me up I can hear him bustling around and I do feel trifle guilty.

Indy:Welcome here and don't give him too much credit!He has his own reasons for taking up the task. He is afraid that I may disturb the cream and he is very possesive about it. A happy New year to you too.

dipali said...

Talk about creatures of habit, aka husbands! And wives who want their coffee made by the spouse, however unsuitable the time:)
Corruption is just so endemic. I hope your wait is fruitful. Wishing you an enjoyable year of teaching, and rewarding students to teach. All the best for 2010.

soul speaks said...

Hi, I just loved your writings, I felt as if I am sitting with one of my beloved teachers. One thing which I found as a similarity between you and my mother is the ' coffee in the morning part' . Since my childhood I have seen that it is my father who makes the morning bed coffee for him and my mother, now me and my sister are married but the custom continues and in Delhi winters , she also has the same deilemma whether to get up at 5 am to drink the coffee or be warm in the quilts and then have a lukewarm coffee later on???

Wish you too a very Happy New Year.

take care

Hip Grandma said...

dipal:Thanks.And these husbands......Ohhho...........!

soul speaks:Welcome here and thanks. i must meet your mother sometime to compare notes :-))!