Showing posts from 2023

Reflections: The Island of Missing Trees by Ms. Elif Shafak

What was the book about? Ms. Elif is a believer of the inherited pain, and this book is about  the same, in humans, in animals and in plants. The island of the missing trees is a historic fiction with the background set during 1974 Cyprus conflict. The protagonists of the story are Kostas, a Greek Christian,  Defne, a Turkish Muslim and a Fig Tree (to be precise a female fig tree). The two teenagers with contrasting personalities fell in love, during the time they shouldn't. The book narrates their journey, through their perspectives and from the fig's point of view. How amid the communal tension and conflicts in Cyprus, the lovers had to part ways and how having lost their love they found themselves? How I felt after reading it? My very first thought was, how less I know about the past, the people and their pain. I had read about the holocaust, the nuclear attacks and as an Indian, about the communal riots happened during Indian Independence. I had not heard of Cyprus conflict

Reflections: A Gentleman in Moscow by Mr. Amor Towles

What was the book about? This is another historical fiction I recently read. A Gentleman in Moscow is the story of Count Alexander Ilyich Rostow, who was sentenced to house arrest (in the hotel he was residing at that time) till the end of his life. The story is set in Stalin Russia where the Count being a Count was spared a death sentence for writing a poem that had provoked the revolutionary activities. Books narrates the Count's life in the Metropol Hotel where he spends more than 30 years.  However, the sentence turns out to be a blessing for Count where he escaped the mundane life within the walls and found a purpose. He created a world for himself in that hotel.  During this time, our protagonist finds love, makes many valuable friends and becomes a foster father to a wonderful young girl. The book leaves you with a satisfying end with some unanswered questions. How I felt after reading it? The book for sure leaves its footprint on your brain. The main character is written as

Reflections: A Thousand Splendid Suns by Mr. Khaled Hosseini

What was the book about? From the author of the bestselling novel "The Kite Runner", A Thousand Splendid Suns narrates a fictitious tale of two women, Mariam and Laila. The two protagonists, both born in different decades in different parts of their country with their destinies  intertwined, where for the salvation of the one, the other has to relinquish. It is a saga about their love, loss, submission, and courage set on the landscape of war and political upheavals in Afghanistan between 1959-2003. The writer takes you through the flourished cities to the barren lands. From the school-going girls to the c-sections without anesthesia. From the working women in skirts to the widows compelled to leave children in orphanages.  From a naïve Mariam Jo, waiting for her father, who is ashamed of publicly acknowledging her existence, to a mature Laila who leaves a comfortable life to be a part of the change, her country was going through. And in between these two, the writer has writ

पानी वाले बाबा।

Audio version of this story is available on my Youtube channel and also linked at the bottom of this post. "बाबा! लगता है आज खुल्ले पैसे नहीं हैं | " "कोई बात नहीं बिटिया, रहने दो | " "अरे नहीं बाबा, मैं कल दे दूंगी | " खुल्ले पैसों के लिए हैंडबैग टटोल ही रही थी कि मेरी बस आ गई और  मैं  भीड़ के साथ आगे बड़ गई | वह आखिरी दिन था जब मैंने बाबा को उस स्टॉप पर देखा था।  मैं, इस विशाल नेशनल कैपिटल रीजन की एक छोटी सी कम्पनी की छोटी सी इंजीनियर। ऑफिस पहुँचने के लिए बोटैनिकल गार्डन से बस लेकर ग्रेटर नॉएडा का सफर तय करती थी| इसी बस स्टॉप पर करीब ४ महीने पहले मैंने बाबा को पहली बार देखा था।  हम सभी धुल धुप से परेशान बस स्टॉप के छोटे से शेड में खुद को छुपकर, बस के इंतज़ार कर रहे थे कि किसी के गाने की आवाज़ आई , "ओर रे ताल मिले नदी के जल में, नदी मिले सागर में ... "  हम में से कई लोगों ने उस आवाज़ की तरफ ध्यान भी नहीं दिया. पर जब आवाज़ हमारे करीब पहुंची तो मैंने देखा, लगभग  60 साल के एक बुजुर्ग साइकिल पर एक मिटटी का घड़ा रखकर, जिसपर एक गीला बोरा बंधा हुआ था, हमारी त

My kid does not have an Instagram page, here's why!

Disclaimer : This article does not intend to question or criticize anyone. Sole objective is to share my personal opinion. Images used are sourced from Google Images . I have heard this as a mockery, suggestion and surprise, "Ooh! you don't have an Instagram page for your baby? He is so cute, you should!" Well I don't and I have no intentions of creating one anytime soon. I agree that babies are cute and when it's your own, he/she is the cutest. I am in the age group where even when I sparingly open my social media accounts I stumble upon good number of photos and videos of little bundles of joy. I love them all. I do.  Kids make angelic faces, say innocent things, dance and act amusingly. Why wouldn't camera love them? Yet it is hard for me to relate with the parents' obsession of sharing their baby's snaps doing almost everything, turn their activities into reels and stage a candid moment. Please note that I am not condemning parents who manages and