Stop, Look, & Stay

Schools re-opened in Berlin today, ushering in the new school year. Everywhere I turned there were people with very mixed feelings about this. I lost count of the number of parents at the end of their patience walking ahead of children throwing some tantrum or another. Clearly the first day of school can be just as traumatic for the children as it is for the parents. Then there the groups of young students eager to show off new clothes, make-up, or cool new gadgets acquired over the summer. I couldn’t stop and watch every interesting moment I passed today, otherwise…

“Stop, Look, Go” – Gratitude

Stop, Look, Go is the golden. rule for crossing the street, playing tennis, running, photography, and as I learned today, gratitude. The US-based Austrian monk, Brother David Steindl-Rast has written wonderful books on finding inner peace and happiness by addressing individual topics in depth. Available in both German and English, Brother David’s language is clear, simple, digestible, and carries a profound insight that leaves you wondering why you have not been doing this before. Have a look at his TED Talk on gratitude and happiness (1993): Brother David reminds us that we often make the mistake of being grateful only…

Reclaiming My Home

Turbulence is an unwelcome guest, but often times unavoidable. Serenity and Balance are my preferred guests but also high maintenance ones. It is so much easier to just let Turbulence in, who usually has Chaos and Confusion in tow, give them free range of the place, and allow them to do what they do best – an unholy mess. Turbulence can be asked to leave politely, but Chaos and Confusion, when left to their own devices, like to remain invite Hurt, Disillusionment, and Frustration over as well for an extended soiree, unpleasantly rooted inside my home and soul, much to…

Citizenship: One Step Closer

As you may have noticed from my blogging absence this week, I have been caught up in a whirlwind of activity and incidents. Running around between physiotherapy, psychotherapy, the assorted government offices to submit requirements, and studying for the German citizenship test was a lot to chew. I am supposed to be resting and recovering but everything happened this week, on top of helping my daughter pack up for her great exodus today. Why do I attract crazy situations wherein everything happens at the same time? I had wished for a luxurious recovery time for my aching fractured shoulder, but…

Crossroads and Rebirth

Eight months ago my daughter moved in with me, taking a semester off to recover from depression, anxiety and a host of other problems. She was in a deep, dark place, her soul broken, disappointed with herself, and disillusioned with the world. We set out to heal and find a new source of motivation that would build up her self-esteem and confidence. The artist and musician were shattered, and my daughter needed her mother and a friend. Our journey over the last months has been shared on this blog several times over, since it was not just her journey but…

The Weavers of Darjeeling

The preservation and sometimes restoration of old print photographs is important to me, not just because it is a way of keeping in touch with my past, but there are some veritable treasures in those old archives. One of the first trips I took in India without my family was to the tea plantations in Darjeeling. It was my privilege to be invited along by a German nun (may she rest in peace) who was visiting a convent in the area, so I said Yes! and never regretted it. One of the projects the convent supported was the displaced widows…

Can I Say “Yes” More?

Jim Carrey and Zooey Deschanel are not my favourite actors, but that is simply because I am not a great fan of comedy. These two actors are extremely talented and multifaceted in their own right, I am just not a follower. Having said that, I ended up watching Yes Man (Der Ja-Sager, originally released in 2008 and directed by Payton Reed, a film adaptation of the book by Danny Wallace) on Netflix last night, not quite sure hat to expect from this rom-com. Though the movie leaves much to be desired, Danny Wallace’s words from the book, which I proceeded…