Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Goodbye 2010

New Year is here again and it’s amazing that yet another year has whizzed past before we even realize fully justifying the old quote ‘Time flies’….yours truly back at her scribbling board with my share of reminisces of the year 2010.

At home, we normally welcome the New Year with Amma lighting the lamp at 00.00 hrs and praying for the happiness, prosperity & good health of our entire dear and near ones. Once I hit the bed after the customary calls and wishes, I lie back tracing footsteps back to the past year-it’s fun to think of all the positive things that have happened – fun, jokes, happy times, get-togethers etc. Again I do contemplate on those not so positive incidents – could be anything ranging from small health issues, accidents, heartbreaks, job loss or even loss of life of a dear one. This reinforces the belief that just like a coin has 2 sides, life too has its share of happiness & sorrow. How true when they say one can appreciate light only when one has experienced darkness…. That’s how my year 2010 has been…

I always love to begin a New Year with a lot of positivity, new resolutions, renewed relationships etc. Yup, retaining that spirit throughout the year is a struggle J but it definitely keeps you going. And last year too I started on the same note with a strong resolution to have a zest for life, be more sociable ;) ( which is quite a difficult task for me ), be more health conscious (alternatively do some exercise other than getting into and out of the car :)) & last but not least be more organized with my finances.

Jan 2010 went quite smoothly without any major events. Feb & March had me head over heels with work and office since there was a major restructure happening and we were trying our best to bring up the sinking ship. April brought me sorrow as well as joy and both in the extremes –the biggest loss in this year was my grandmother who passed away on April 29th, she was wonderful woman whom I admire for her determination & undeterred love for her children- she was the pillar of our family who kept the entire joint family united under her wings. April also offered me signs of a renewed hope of love in my life, new hopes; new dreams….I decided to step out of my cocoon where I had buried myself for the past 3 yrs and once again dream of a life.

May 2010 brought about the sad news that our company was closing down and we were all being laid off with 3 months notice time. However, as they say love makes you blind and you are oblivious to the things around you. I was in love, for the first time in my life…. and I was ready to face any situation with this renewed zest to life. Yup, so that’s where my first resolution to bring out the zest to life in me worked.

May also brought about our annual Providence College alumni meet which I hadn’t attended for years, but this year I took my second resolution seriously and ventured out for the first time to a crowd of 56 people and honestly I enjoyed it, made new friends & renewed social ties. And can you believe it that for the year 2011 my batch (tats me and my friends) is going to be organizing the same ;) (he he… sometimes I go overboard being social, don’t I)?

June started off on a good note since after 3 years of dragging at various courts, I won my divorce case and all the paper work was settled and officially I was single again. But once again be it destiny or fate or even luck, life has its strange ways of telling us no happiness is permanent. The biggest shock came to me when I realized that I had built my dreams on an unscrupulous cheat, for whom life was just another big joke and had made a mockery of my feelings. But better late than never, at least I was saved from the clutches of a looming disaster at a very early stage, I told myself… my positivity and zest for life kept me going again.

July & Aug were months spent on serious job hunting and I did pick up my last 2 resolutions during this month... First thing I did was to join a gym for 2 months and neither I nor the trainer there could believe that I was one of the most regular members there – yup, the machines are still intact and in good condition , not to worry ;) but this regular schedule did have its desired effect on my physical and mental health…Wait, don’t go back to look at my photo ;), when I said desired effect , it jus meant toning down or losing a little weight , not that I became a super model (oh pls folks…this is Sajitha that you are talking about ;)) As far as organizing my finances were concerned, sat down on it and cleared up the beautiful mess that had been going about for 2-3 yrs – set off loans, cleared credit cards, sold my car, gave up my flat and yes had a completely clean chit.

Job hunting did not work out well due to recession …and hence decided to relocate back home. Leaving behind Dubai was not so easy, a place I had lived for the past 7 years .It was hard to leave good friends especially Sapna & Amrith who stand as my pillars of friendship any day, Ishan- their son, who is my closest pal and the apple of my eye, and my sister Soumi & Chandru (my bro in law) –always standing beside me with their undeterred support and love.

Sept 2010, I said Goodbye to Dubai and headed back home because firstly I needed a break and secondly or most importantly, my little sister was due with her first baby. The next day after I landed in town, she delivered a baby girl (what a timing eh? ;)) - Ameya, we named her. She is the best thing that happened in 2010 :)… her million dollar smile is something I can die for ;) Sept hence was busy with relatives, guests swarming the house to catch a glimpse of our tiny bundle of joy.

Sept & Oct had me fully occupied with our new star, baby talk, baby rhymes, vaccines L…never knew when the month whizzed by. Oct also had me renewing ties with 2 of my close friends, and we never stop chatting these days, much to the complains of others ;)

November had me doing my normal pilgrimages to all the temples along with Amma trying to bribe and coax the Gods :) ,a beautiful day at Guruvayur topped the list. I love visiting temples and the sanctity and peace drives a new gush of positivity to my soul.

December was a bit lean since I had to undertake some treatment for my hand the whole month, where I was under Ayurvedic treatment for the same. But the end of the month brought about the real joy of meeting old friends from school- a school reunion that I have earlier blogged down. Also caught up with some college friends and had a great time.

So that’s my roller coaster year 2010…. Yes, have been my best with my resolutions in 2010 that I haven’t made any for the year 2011 ;) (there is a saying in Malayalam “ Swaram nannaavumbol paattu nirthanam” – which literally means we should stop singing when the voice is good )

Good friends, supportive family and my bundle of joy has made the year 2010 quite a memorable one – though there have been not so good memories too, all that I am carrying to this new year 2011 are just these – my friends, family & of course my new lil buddy !!

Wish you all a very Happy & Blessed New year and hope your year will be filled with the happiest memorable events in the New Year!!!

Ciao ….

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Ode to Friendship

"When old friends get together, everything else fades to insignificance."
The beauty of this old saying was seen in its rainbow colours at our first official get together of KV Malappuram students of 93-95 batch on 26th Dec.2010. This was our first get together after school - after 15 years.
This time on my annual vacation to India, thanks to social networking sites like Facebook & Orkut, I had got some contact details of my old friends from school. The first person I called was Kuriakose Menon, as I lovingly call :) - Vinod, and got a warm welcome from him and wasn’t I surprised when he called me up 2 days later and said that he is in my hometown and wanted to meet me…He came over home and we caught up on old times..underneath the old bubbly, nonsensical friend I was expecting , saw a warm, mature but of course fun loving pal with whom I could connect to without any barriers. He updated me on the details of a lot of our friends since he was in touch with them and gave me all their contact details. He mentioned that a few of them (only the guys gang) meet up quite often over a cuppa coffee (coffee like coloured drink) and keep themselves updated. He left with a suggestion that why don’t we organize some get together with all our friends and since I was jobless and practically doing nothing at home, why don’t I call up a few to check with our old pals ?
Next process of ringing up old friends was an enjoyable task. Initially I was a bit apprehensive as to how many would be interested to actually make time for this but to my surprise, I got a brilliant response – Jasmine & Sreeja topped the list with their enthusiasm, they were ready for anything anytime, from the guys gang Vijesh, Praveen MC & Vinod had already started off with the calls and invitations from their side since they had been planning the same for a long time. Everybody started calling and inviting each other- Kavitha, Sajitha MP,Sumayya,Hani,Babu, Saleel , Deepu, Jolly,Waheeda,Dinesh, Satish, Niju,Santosh,Sachin, Jayaram, Praveen Prakash, Vasanth, Pappiya, Hanas, Devaraj,Bhoopesh, Roopesh,Dinesh, Sajith Kumar , infact everyone we contacted gave us an overwhelming and delightful response. Everybody sincerely wanted it to happen and tried their best to be there….

We did not call this a reunion meet since this was our first get together and further treated this more like a curtain raiser to the many more annual organized reunions we would have in future. Hence for the same reason spouses, kids, family, teachers were not invited, which of course brought about a lot of murmur from our better halves whose egos were shattered at this exclusion.

The small conference room was just perfect for our little crowd. On the D-Day, we had a get together with 19 of our classmates – Vijesh, Vinod, MC,Devarajan,Santosh,Sajith,Hanas, Babu,Niju, SajithaMP,Sreeja, Jasmine, Kavitha, Hani, Sumayya,Roopesh MK,Dinesh, Sanal & yours truly.
The school prayer song and the welcome speech brought out the old warmth and belongingness in us. We didn’t need any ice breakers for this get together-- there was absolutely no formalities or inhibitions. The welcome speech by Vinod was quite enjoyable and brought many a laugh in all of us followed by the intro speech by all just to catch up with all as to what had happened in our lives in these 15 years.
Yes, a long 15 years had passed since many of us had last seen each other.... we had all moved ahead in life from those school days, we had changed in our looks and outlook to life, but one binding factor that still ran through us was the friendship that we still shared …. Yes, the connection was instant….we got along like a house on fire – old jokes, new stories, teacher tales etc… We make friendships in school , college, at work place etc etc, but many a time most uncorrupted or innocent friendships are made during school days because these are built based on the true essence of friendships unlike the latter friendships we make considering selfish interests, status symbols, career demands etc. School friendships and friends have always been simple and lighten the heart …
After a sumptuous lunch buffet, we settled down for some games like Passing the parcel and Bingo and it was just like in old school days… for some time, I am sure all of us were transported years back to our carefree school days without worries or work pressure or family demands etc..

How true when they say “Old friends are like fine wine, they only improve with age…” – we had all matured gracefully over the years, become responsible individuals but had maintained our spirit of friendship and fun in life.

It was unanimously decided that we would make it a point to meet every year henceforth – with/without families /teachers was left for later discussion since many of us couldn’t come to a consensus on that ;) And as responsible human beings we decided that our meeting would support a meaningful cause each year – be it donations to charitable institutions, providing health care to the needy –etc etc, we will soon set up a small account on the same and do our bit for the society that we are a part of – that made us what we are today!!

We parted with rekindled spirit of friendship and joy, lightened hearts and beautiful memories to cherish till the next time. Thanks to each one of you who made an effort to be there and to those who couldn’t make it but made their presence felt through calls, mails, and facebook updates etc.

It brings me great joy to see the facebook group so active and my mail box flooded with comments and counter comments. Hope to see us all active in this friendship now and forever!!

I take leave with this note “"Friends are the most important ingredient in this recipe of life. The better part of one's life consists of his friendships. "