Sunday, 9 December 2018

Short Golpo Tales

The Drummer Man

Dum-Dum-Dum, I can hear them loud and clear: the sound of drums!

As I enter the Jus Drums school, I can see about 15 children and a few drum kits in the room. Some of them are playing a beat over and over again, a couple of them discussing, a parent waiting for his turn to ask a question. I see an animated Murali “sir”, their teacher, asking the eldest student in the room why a doubt is being cleared just a day before a crucial exam.
“Here, let me play and explain” and Murali starts to play the drum kit.  Just like a swarm of bees attracted to light, all the children assemble around and watch him perform with total devotion!

An excited parent takes a video of the impromptu lesson and promises to share it with everyone. Murali then answers questions, one by one, which range from “when is the next class, sir?” to “sir, can you ask Trinity to postpone the exams? It’s clashing with my school exam!” much to my wonder.

In fact, one enthusiastic parent proudly shows him a video of his daughter playing the newly purchased drum kit at home and Murali smiles, watches the video and answers a barrage of questions that follow, patiently.

“Phew! Where do you get this stamina from” I ask Murali as he wraps up the class for this batch.
"Well, it’s the enthusiasm with which they come, wanting to learn, their passion and now, having dealt with them for so many years, it comes naturally to me! You need to go their way to get the best out of them", he says with a big smile.

“What was your inspiration to take up drumming?,” I ask.
"The Chenda drum which was played in the temple in Palakkad was my inspiration! I used to look forward to the trips to Palakkad. On one occasion, my father recorded it for me. I kept listening to it again and again, in total enthrallment. In school, I was fascinated by a senior of mine who could play any and every instrument and I visualized a day when I would do the same!"

Today Murali can play 20  instruments and more than 1000 children have learnt the art of drumming from his school.

As Murali makes me listen to the rhythm of the traffic noise, and the taka-taka-taka of the moving ceiling fan, an old lady enters, asking if she could join his classes. Murali smiles a big smile and welcomes her.

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Short Golpo Tales!

In this series I will be sharing articles from the column I write for the ispark magazine!

Gully Gully Mein Cricket!

It’s 4am and the alarm goes off in the Venkatraman household. Amma is the first to get up and vigorously wakes up Paddu. In half hour, they are ready to go to the ground, no, not for a walk but Cricket Coaching.

This is a familiar scene in many households in Chennai and I am always fascinated to see that boy riding pillion on the scooter holding on to his cricket kit bag tightly as the father concentrates on the road! Many of them dream to hold the MRF bat like Sachin and Virat or a Spartan bat of MS Dhoni.

The parents walk on the side of the ground as their children take strike or get ready to bowl. It’s their love for cricket and the enthusiasm of the kids that make them take that extra effort to be on the ground, at times sleep deprived, buy those expensive kits, engage a personal coach, act as cheerleaders, make sure breakfast is ready, lunch box is ready and also manage the all-pervasive Homework along with their own office work.

The young cricketers on the other hand,work hard, put in all efforts to fulfill their dreams of lifting that Cup and acknowledging the cheer of millions of fans! Cricket is a religion in our country and every time there is a match, T20, Test match or the IPL, we have the whole nation united.

And it all starts here, in the ground, in the nukkad (corner), in the small gullies (alleys), where a future MS Dhoni, Virat kohli, Sachin, Krish Srikanth, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble is waiting to be discovered, waiting to wear the blue jersey. So, the next time you see a white set of uniform along with pads and cap drying in the balcony, stop for a minute, and wish that child all the very best. Who knows he might be India’s next skipper J

For more info on ispark do visit thier site!

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Giving up ? Not an option !

Last evening as I was grappling with a post on FB, it was quite natural to turn to my daughter to help me complete it.  "Ma you give up so easily " she chided me. As I sulked, I realised that I have been tethered to my own thoughts of feeling rather inadequate when it comes to writing.
Time for some introspection!
I figured that I had locked up a small list of insecurities, tucked them away in an obscure place, which I would often like to visit. Sometimes the visit would leave be feeling all scalded and would take a few days to heal.
But strange, that instead of working on those insecurities, I have often taken the easier route of reaching out to people, sought their help and got the task done! I have never been refused help and that made my job very easy.
But then, I simply gave up a chance to learn something new.
It seems like I have been deftly avoiding the process of learning and better that “something”, that I was feeling inadequate about.
Every day brings its own challenges, but also an opportunity to learn something new. And I realise by taking the easy way out I have deprived myself a chance to go up the learning curve.

Well it’s not too late and maybe I can promise myself to finish that course on Coursera and not switch sessions for the “n”th time. I might have to advance my waking up time though ;-).

Looks like "Prioritising" is the new buzz word that’s going to help me get there !

“What you practice grows stronger “. This sentence spoken by a lady on a Ted Talk really resonated with me and makes a lot of sense now.
Clearly, giving up is not an option that’s available if I want to learn.

Having committed to that, I promise not to be harsh on myself, exhibit some TLC and pay some kind attention to those parts of me, which need it. But the next time, I need help on finishing a writing piece, get that excel numbers out of my way or some new ideas for a workshop, “Dial A Friend “is not an option J