/photo-challenges/cherry-on-top/”>Cherry On Top #happydiwali #newyear #festive #festivefun #deepavali #bloggers #lightdiya #dorangoli #begood #havefun

WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE
Cherry On Top- A photo of a detail that makes a good thing even better.

“a desirable feature perceived as the finishing touch to something that is already very good.”

RANGOLI

Rangoli also called Kolam is an art form from India in which patterns are created on the floor in living rooms or courtyards using materials such as colored rice, dry flour, colored sand or flower petals. It is usually made during  Indian festivals. Designs are passed from one generation to the next, keeping both the art form and the tradition alive.The purpose of rangoli is decoration, and it is thought to bring good luck.

Here is a picture of a Peacock rangoli. When flower petals were added  it enhanced the beauty of the rangoli altAitAnvpaKhzytFrYUYg-QpI8m_h-CybQur_Ax-JYkpWS

 

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The flower petals enhance the beauty of the Rangoli

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/prompts/clock/”>Clock

CLOCK

The students are seated in the examination hall . The bell rings and the three hour duration examination begins.

I observe what a sharp contrast it is ,as the venue and time span is same for me (invigilator) and students but our brain activity is so different!!

For a student the brain is at its productive best I feel -sharp, thinking , concentrating, recollecting, as they are answering their papers.
For me a very different frame of mental activity-least productive I feel.

For them every minute is precious and clock is ticking fast whereas for me every minute seems so long and the clock seems to be ticking very slowly.

As I sit and watch them answering their papers, many thoughts cross my mind as I watch each one of them.
As I observe their hands and fingers as it works on the drawing sheet using the ” T Scale ” , set squares, drafter, pencil and compass, I recollect the moments when they were trying to learn how to use the instruments, the A, B, C of spatial images & learning how to stretch their imagination & visualization skills.

I also get to notice the different shades of the same colour uniform. Some bright , some dull & faded, different hairstyles of the girls and boys . I notice oiled hair with a parting seems to be a thing of a bygone era!

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DEPTH

There is so much depth in prayer. There is a prayer which is sung in”INFINITHEISM”. Its called the infini prayer

Feeling thy presence
Feeling thy grace
Feeling thy radiance
You are my source of faith and strength
You are my path and destination
And I am always connected to you
Nothing of me and everything of you
Lead me Higher…
Lead me Deeper…
Lead me Beyond…
Lead me to you.

I read somewhere these lines “Knowing about God is purely intellectual. God isn’t something to be understood. God is to be felt. God is a matter of the heart. Feelings are the doors to divine experiences.”

When prayers come from the depth of the heart , they are definitely answered

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FEAST

A thing of beauty is a joy forever.

Nature never ceases to attract us. Mother Earth is filled with the most beautiful landscapes that mesmerizes us.The ocean,the flowers in full bloom,the snow clad mountains, the greenery near a mountain side after the rains, the deep valleys, gorges, cascading waterfalls, sunrise, sunset, rolling hills, dense jungles, sand dunes, the lazy river, pristine beaches,swaying trees in the breeze, the clear blue sky, rainbow, carpet of flowers on the ground are such a feast to the eyes. Every time I see them I try to  drink their beauty with my eyes.  Nature and its wonder mesmerizes me and takes away all the sorrow that surrounds me sometimes.!!

Sometimes I feel that technology makes us a little crazy when we keep clicking pictures of the beauty around with cameras , how we forget to capture the images in our camera like eyes that God has given us  !!. Do we really get time in this fast paced world to sit and look at the photos at leisure later on???

An infants smile,yawn, activities is also a feast to the eyes. Looking at a baby one forgets all the worries of the world.

I find the architecture of man made monuments of historical importance  also a feast to my eyes.The engineering skills of our ancestors amazes me. Without machinary, lifts, construction equipments there is perfect symmetry in the monuments build a few centuries ago.

I am a great fan  of anything ethnic. Handicrafts, handlooms, textiles, home decor, artifacts ,jewellery  are something that are also a feast to my eyes. Even window shopping for any of them gives a feel good factor to me. Exhibitions sometimes exhibit their stuff and I love visiting such exhibitions. I find it refreshing to just have a look at the things that I find beautiful .Just having a look at them is like gorging on a  feast for me.

Plants, Bonsai, flowers in full bloom ,well maintained gardens, lawns are also feast to the eyes. Anything that relaxes and gives a calming, soothing effect to the mind is a feast to my  eyes.

There are lots of images on pinterest too that are so appealing to look at that people pin them .

Some people are so nice to be with, we enjoy having them around. They bring sunshine to our lives and are a feast to our souls.

Finally beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder and perspective is what makes all the difference.!

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FRAIL

Health is wealth. This is so very true. As age advances there are so many changes in the physical body. For geriatrics the change is tremendous. And God forbid if it is coupled with an illness and complicated health issues then their immunity too gets compromised. They become so weak and frail.

It really becomes a sad situation for them. Someone who had been active throughout life have to start depending on others. Their frail body does not cooperate with them . Different people face different types of health issues and it is upto an individual how they face it.

Sometimes illness strikes even at a younger age . How hard it is for a youngster to accept the condition of a deteriorating body when they become frail and weak in the prime of their life can be seen when one visits a hospital ward.

Some people pick up through their sheer mental strength inspite of their fragile physical body and conquer the disease.

The world would be a much happier place  when everyone is blessed with a sound body and mind.

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 FOR  POSTERITY

Receiving a ‘greeting card’ from near and dear ones on special occasions is such a beautiful feeling. I remember as a kid my father used to receive lots and lots of greeting cards during the dawn of the new year . We as kids would look forward for the postman to deliver the cards. The landscape,scenery,floral, geometric design, hand painted figures on the cards used to be so beautiful. We would preserve the cards that we  liked and would use it for decoration in our school projects! The newspaper cuttings were black and white when compared to the colourful cards, so it was the greeting card pictures that came handy to stick in the project files.

During the college years we had a practice of exchanging greeting cards during birthdays of friends. A greeting card shop looked so attractive in those days. Spending time going through so many cards under various categories used to be such a nice feeling.I remember some months there would be so many upcoming birthdays (college and hostel friends) that more money would have to be allocated from the fixed amount that I received for my monthly expenses when I was staying in the hostel.

I would see to it that the card I chose had a good picture and also a good write up. Even stickers were bought to be stuck on the cards. It also used to be a happy feeling  when I received cards during my birthdays.I would preserve all of them carefully-  thankyou cards, birthday cards,  congratulations cards, anniversary cards ,valentine day, Good luck, to someone special cards .

When I would look at the write ups on the romantic cards in the shop , sometimes I would feel “I wish I had someone for whom I could buy or I wish I received such cards from someone special !!!”

The next stage post college was selecting cards during the courting days for my fiance. Letter writing is also something I have always enjoyed . Writing and receiving letters is a beautiful experience.

With the advancement of technology greeting cards graduated to  e-cards. Searching various sites for the appropriate e-cards,  animated cards , customizing a card was altogether a different experience.It was amazing that from the confines of the home at the click of the mouse cards were exchanged. Letter writing too became via emails.

A couple of years later SMS became the norm . The customary phone call too for wishing friends on birthdays and anniversaries took a backseat with the arrival of text messages on cell phones.

Currently whatsapp ,skype, FB have taken over. I am sure most of us would have never imagined such leaps in the advancement of technology and social media platforms.

When I pass through a greeting card section in a gift shop or card shop I do not have the same level of excitement any more. We hardly have postmen delivering mails . Its ages since I have written an informal letter with a pen on paper.

My generation has seen the changes .We have smoothly graduated from one medium to another. Our Posterity will never get to experience these small joys of life .Sometimes I wonder how my kid has never experienced the thrill of receiving a hand written letter nor has written one too . They do not know the excitement of waiting to receive cards , letters by post. The postman is something they are not very familiar with.

Maybe its something like I too never experienced the era of receiving messages through doves,pigeons and messengers !!!

 

Unpredictable

Life is unpredictable and full of strange surprises  .What is going to come next nobody knows. Uncertainty about the future does cause anxiety  .If God makes one face such a situation ,He also brings you through it .Experiences, intution, gut feeling, faith, belief, hope,education, values etc are some factors which I guess teach ,guide us to handle unpredictable situations in the journey of life. Life is unpredictable so one has to be prepared for the best and the worst at times.

. When I realize after a few conversations with a person that he/ she is unpredictable I generally avoid getting close or informal with him/her. I find a person unpredictable when  he/she changes opinion about someone as per  his/her mood on a particular day. It could be that one day he/she is appreciating x,y,z and another day would be grumbling, cribbing, complaining about the same person just because he/she is in a foul mood.!!!!..

I am not fond of such  persons and like to maintain a distance from people having unpredictable behaviour . I sort of begin to have less interest in that person’s talks,opinions,views as they keep changing and contradicting  . Why can’t a person be consistent is what I would feel when interacting with such persons.!!!

It need not be about people’s opinion only , it could also be about  places, tastes , likes, dislikes etc. for an unpredictable behaviour person.

” Be wary of  unpredictable  people  is something I follow !!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Journey 

images (3)I have always associated the word journey with a “Train journey” since for me as a kid holidays meant visiting our native place and the journey to the native place down south meant travelling by train for 2 days.
Today as I am keying in , once again my mind is flooded with the beautiful memories of travelling by the great Indian Railways. I loved to watch the changing landscape as the train chugged from one state to another. The dry arid regions, the lush green forests, the changing terrain, rivers flowing with current,the dry river beds, farms with crops swaying in the breeze , the night sky with millions of twinkling lights from the houses all visible in a single journey of 2 days!!.Isn’t this someway similar to the changes that occur in this “journey of life”?
As a young girl I would love to watch from the window the view after the sun went down and the night set in . As the train would speed ahead , no change in terrain would be visible except for the tiny innumerable lights that dotted the land ( light bulbs from houses) with cool air touching my cheeks. I would wish for the view to continue without a change. But that is not possible. Similarly only the good times cannot continue in life too I guess.
I cherish my journeys that I had with my parents when I was a young school going girl as life was carefree, studies and board exams were yet to show their face. Travelling as a family was so much fun.
Not that travelling now is not fun with my family, kid . But there is a difference- I am a parent now with a kid. The role reversal is definitely very different I believe.
In this journey of life I do intend to undertake more fun filled journeys with my loved ones .I can definitely be a kid at heart if not by age to relive those moments of childhood once again!!

A Piece of Advice

Advice is something like a medicine. Nobody likes it but at times it does influence a person.It also depends upon the source from where /whom the advice comes.

As a kid and during the growing up years plenty of advice are given to guide ,teach, learn the ways of life . They really help in setting up values which form the foundation of a person’s character.

An advice that I will always remember was once given by my uncle. He said that when one faces a situation in life where you have to take a decision and its a “fork” type situation. God will always choose the best path that is meant for us.

what he meant was –Maybe we decide to choose path A but if God wanted Path B for us. We will choose path A , travel it, realize its not working and we would come back to the intersection and decide to follow path B . Sometimes what we think is best for us may not be the case always, as God has his plans already chalked out for us which HE knows is best for us.

This advice I liked and often I remember my uncle for this piece of advice.