Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from August, 2014

Cat O' Nine Tales

I have never had a pet. Except for one day when I was five or six when I picked up a kitten from a warehouse I had gone to visit with someone (why, I cannot recall). We cannot have the kitten at home, I was told categorically and was to go drop it back where it came from for its mum must be missing it by now. My desperate pleadings went unheeded and I climbed sobbing on to the front end of the scooter while an uncle (I imagine) took his place in the driver's seat. I was handed a large bag made out of rexine with the mewing fur ball inside. I was instructed to hold on to it tight and I did so accordingly all the way back to the warehouse where I left it reluctantly to fend for itself.

I have never been tempted to buy or adopt a pet since. I have very little interest in them and after the children, I have come to see pets as another responsibility I can do without. Every now and then, my younger son asks me about having a pet and the conversation goes like this:

Him: Amma, can we h…

But is it art?

In the main concourse of the Rijks Museum in Amsterdam hangs a large notice which begins by saying that I may not like everything that I was about see that day. And that it was okay. I do not remember much else of this notice but it reassured me greatly. It was part of the 'Art As Therapy' route that you could take, if you so choose to, around the museum and it was one created by the philosopher Alain De Botton and someone else. Now, I must put my hand up to being one of those bourgeois Indians who have made it a nouvelle habit of visiting art museums around the world only to have my photo taken next to Mona Lisa/Sunflowers or any other painting that I have only ever heard of and feel compelled to record my presence in front of it rather spend the few precious seconds that I get amidst heaving summer crowds looking at it. Mind you, my own reaction when squeezed by such throngs at Tirupathi would be different. I wouldn't be posing with the Perumaal, no, that would be blasp…

A Tough Life

The other day, my younger son and I went on a 10-mile bike ride punctuating our ride with breaks for snacks, dangling our feet in the river and foraging for fruit. We had a picnic by the Thames, munched on our sandwiches, drank juice straight from the carton, hid behind the trees to wee while the other kept a watch and gathered bouquets for a small donation. It reminded me that living in England in summer truly takes some beating.

Monty Python Live (Mostly)

It was some time in the late 90s. An ex-boss who had been born and raised in Britain and had returned to India mentioned something about Monty Python in a conversation. Now, I had no idea who Monty Python was and thought it was something to do with The Full Monty - a movie I had watched on TV not long earlier. Internet was a recent distraction back then and keen to exploit everything that search engines had to offer, I yahooed Monty Python and was promptly directed to a website which offered their scripts to download for free. And thus began hours of reading and lol-ing (another recently discovered term back then) Monty Python scripts. When I moved countries to Britain some years later, one of the first things I did was to borrow a DVD of Monty Python shows and watch their work and marvel at their collective brilliance. Earlier this year, when I read that the Pythons were going to come back together for a final few shows, I made a mental note of it and then promptly forgot about it -…

Some free, some foraged