Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The song of sparrow 2008

A simple and realistic depiction of  the struggle of a man, the sole bread winner of his family, who loses his job on a ostrich farm in Iran, yet lives on hope. Karim (Reza naji ) goes back to home only to find a misfortune, his eldest daughter Haniyeha ( Shabhnam Akhalagi ) has dropped her hearing aid in a pond, which is found, but broken. For that thing he has to visit Tehran. The visit to a city starts an altogether new journey for pastoral Karim. The hustle bustle of city mistakes him for a two wheeler driver who drives passengers from one place to another. That gets him a temporary job and a passion to bring every disposed item and junk to home on his motor cycle.

Iranian film maker manages to show us the busy lives of the city dwellers and its effect on a simple villager. The exposure to the capitalist world brings a change in his character, though gradually. There are incidents that happens with Karim in the city, when a passenger refuses to pay him and instead call him thief, and when another man does not pay him instead use his services. The exploitation of the weak is present in every society and the subjugation makes him self-centered in his approach. The change is so much so that once he gets so annoyed on knowing that his wife has given a battered door to their neighbor. In a fit of anger he goes there and brings back the door, mind you, the same man who shared egg curry with his neighbors.

Direction is just wonderful and something to learn from. The acting is natural, I would say no camouflaging of events. After watching it I have some really poignant episodes from the film that has remained with me. When Karim meets with an accident, we feel his helplessness and pain, lying intact on the bed and incapable of doing anything for his family. The mother sews extra to meet the expenses and to nurture the dream of their son Hussein ( Ahmed Aghazi ) to buy the goldfish. The scene of all the siblings fighting for a spot to sketch on their father's plastered foot is innocent and cute. The accident brings back the old Karim who has a hope to live and give wings to his son's dream to raise the goldfish.

The antenna episode is a nostalgic one for me, in winters when we visited our village (cable was inaccessible) my father used to adjust it the same way and we( all my cousins), like the boy used to jump with joy when the reception would come.

Director Majid Majhidi takes us to the journey of a man, losing his faith and regaining it and the protagonist justifies it. The scenes shot of in the village is just beautiful, allowing us to peep inside the culture and people of Iran. The community love is there, family values, friendship, love and commitment, in fact Karim and his wife Narghes shares really a romantic relationship.

Talking about the title, it may suggest that sparrows never stop singing and we should take it as a lesson. The scene where a sparrow enters the room and Karim shows his generosity to set him free to fly and thus his son's dream. That’s life, its not the same for everyone but we can try to have the best of it. When the bucket containing fish is cracked, the tears in the eyes of children tells it all . The dream to become a millionaire lies their cold and dead, but the man does not give up. He sings to them in pain and remembers the good times gone by. It’s so encouraging.



P.S. Do not miss the movie and show it to your children also. It’s worth it!!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Coccydynia ( Lesson learnt)

27th Aug 2012
One not so fine rainy day,while going to the office I was just lying on the ground, numb, whimpering and motionless. Some kind people  came and rushed me to the nearby hospital. Thank you God for sending them to the rescue. I don't even want to imagine if they.. First aid..Injection.. painkiller.. tetanus.. pain and my constant shrieks and  later my friends at my side. My husband was called too.
I dislocated my Coccyx.What? Yes I heard it right..COCCYX. Why on the Earth, ME? Initial bed rest..had to quit the job.There I was restoring my loss. Months passed.. not been able to walk, jog, exercise and  most importantly sit and sleep too. Shit! Life was hell. It was most embarrassing thing to carry Donut cushion around.  I was angry, upset. But would It help? A big no. My husband would counsel me to be positive and I would just shoo him away.Period.
Neither he gave up nor he let me to give up. The best one was the Introspection time." Am I too weak to fight?" Yes, I am.. I am in Pain. What is the big deal about The Pain? Its just the state of mind sometimes. Fight and Fight!" I felt lame.
Few months later, a visit to a cancer hospital changed my outlook towards Life. There I was to meet my good friend's mother (God bless her)who fought the cancer with a smile and courage. I saw many patients putting a brave front against cancer. even babies and infants, Everyone. Shame one me! I was good enough. Why am I wasting my life cribbing about one minor accident. Why was I giving Coccydynia so much importance. Why was I being a crybaby? 
The incident changed me for good. I feel blessed. Its there but I ignore it with my strong will.

The point of sharing this chapter of my life on the first day of 2014 is, Life doesn't come easy, but we have to fight for it. Live every moment with love and smile!

As Ralph Emerson puts it',''It's not the length of Life, but the depth of Life.''


Friday, October 25, 2013


Of all the things in Life what matters the most? Tough question! Its all about  prioritizing the things,people and what not. Love yourself first and then think about others.Selfish huh! But we all are. Its just we are embarrassed to admit. We all have our set of problems to tackle.Who doesn't have? Who has time for others?  We.. at least I make fun of my grand mommy for loving me too much. I am an apple of her eye which I acknowledge too and of all the things  in my life she is my first ever love. I just want her to be out from the maze of MAYA, the Illusion...the Magic. I want her to come out from the prison of  ILLUSIONS . Question! Is she wrong? And I know, certainly not. Why does it bother to me Because I am also sailing in the same boat and I realize. The world is MAYA. Our fates have been locked.  Its just we are role playing. We have become so habituated while acting our parts that we tend to forget who we are in real. God, the playwright is enjoying the much dedicated performances of MAYA struck actors. Everything on this Earth is temporary so are we. What is permanent? Feelings? If we are not permanent how can our feelings be so? Death is inevitable of all the truths.
 This world is a lie and we are living this lie with honesty. Why shouldn't we? Its a lifetime act and we ought to live it. Why not live it with love and and dedication. And Dadi dearest.. you are absolutely right. I am going to call you up more often. Stay blessed :)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Lunchbox.. (How I like it)

Local..Dabbawallahs..Traffic..Monsoon...Finance..Dreams.. Fans.. Crowd!!  All are the essential ingredients of Mumbai.The Lunchbox is presented in three course meal, that of a starter (Mumbai), Main dish (Life) and irresistible dessert ( Love) and is worth relishing.

Ritesh Batra's film is about two strangers whose fates are entangled by Dabbawallahs. Ila( Nimrat Kaur), a neglected housewife who makes every effort to be noticed by her husband. She keeps on trying new recipes to woo him but all in vain. Saajan Fernandes (Irfan) quite an old man, gets  to relish  those delicious dishes prepared by Ila. Thanks to Dabbawallahs!  Thus, begins their camaraderie, by exchanging notes, sharing their lives.

The plot is simple, but intriguing. The homemaker in busy Mumbai lonely and desperate, wants  her voice to be heard, her feelings to be shared. She is a dutiful wife and mother. Her world surrounds bringing up her daughter and her husband who is seeing another woman. Another  character an old man who is a recluse since his wife's death and has been living the monotony of life. He smokes and eats by himself. He doesn't like to mix up with people, even his colleagues have opinions about him. No one seems to bother about him.  He has managed to  book a standing grave for himself. That's Mumbai, no place for living, not even for dead.

Sheikh, who dreams to survive in Mumbai played by Nawazudin Siddique . He excels in his part. He is funny, pitiable and irritating at times, but a lovable one. He is going to replace Saajan next month. He goes  to every extent to butter the latter for imparting him the training. Sheikh tells him that he is an orphan which changes Saajan's equation towards him. It is sheer delight to watch them together onscreen. What ever he does, he is honest in his approach. He symbolises the Dreams and Finance.How he lied to his father- in- law about his promotion only to be bestowed with the two wheeler in his marriage. The files managed by him smells of garlic and onion because he chops all the vegetables in the Local  to save time. And this is the fact, almost everyone has to commute by Local for work everyday. Even Saajan Fernandes has to bear the same, wiggling through the crowd to reach the destination. Kudos to Mumbaikars for this!

The tale is well narrated and connects the audience. There are no songs except one from Saajan,which Ila requests her Deshpande Aunty to play.Coincidentally, the man savouring her lunchbox is Saajan too. And one folk song, 'Dnyanoba Mauli Tukaram' which opens the film crooned by Dabbawallahs in the Local.

One example of a sweet companionship is between Ila and Deshpande Aunty's voice. Yes.. You read it right. She never appears physically,but she is there guiding Ila and talking to her. She lives upstairs,looking after her bedridden husband who has been staring at the fan for years as if The Fan controls his life. She even gets a generator for his lifeline.

Another sensitive portrayal is of Ila and her mother. A  married daughter feels helpless to provide any financial help to her ailing father The scene is enacted with true conviction by both the actors.

People in urban cities are caught in the web of  loneliness, they need someone to listen to them. When Ila and Saajan  start exchanging those short notes in  the lunchbox, their lives are transformed and that's the power of sharing and bonding. Ila decides to find a way to come out of her loveless marriage. Saajan's attitude towards life and people around him has changed too.Now he is cool with the children playing in front of his house.He has started smiling often. The aroma of food has come out of the lunchbox and makes his life so positive and lively.He even gets a painting for himself because he feels, he sees himself in the painting.One thing which I loved about the film is the  language used in those notes is what they are comfortable in and of course they understand each other.This reminds me of the scene in the film, English Vinglish when Shashi and her Italian friend talks in their own language.The feelings, friendship and love needs no language to express.

The characters are living insipidly until The Lunchbox adds some spice into their lives.Rush and treat yourself to it.The treat might not be the perfect one but I am sure you will like it.

Friday, September 27, 2013

For teachers and students...

Teaching is a joy.. a bliss. Its a two way process. Give and Take. In the very first day of a class I make sure to tell my students, 'Without you I am nothing. I am here for you, not for the walls. 40 percent I can teach rest is your dedication. Any problems, ask thrice, but not without revising it.'  And they dive into the sea of eternal learning, of course I jump with them. Its so much of fun for me as well, it's never monotonous. Somewhere deep down I believed, I knew my capabilities as a teacher. This self implicated faith helped a lot. I have discovered a new self. I have explored presence of virtues like patience which I thought opposite  of me.
 Trust me Life and Students are great teachers. They are unpredictable, challenge you to go beyond your potential. And as I said earlier,'I am here for my students.' The relationship between the two becomes strong, so do the understanding towards knowledge of subject as well as Life. The day a teacher ceases to learn h/she is finished.  You are defeated if your student fails in the test of Life.  When they win, you smile in their victory. That is a reward for which a teacher lives up to. That moment is worth waiting for and you know you are actually not teaching  the walls. The life seems to attain its purpose.

Not to forget my teachers, A THANK YOU for all who taught me the lessons of my Life. Seriously I owe it to you. Stay blessed :)

Saturday, September 21, 2013

One of the best things happened to me is You..

Three years of sacred bond and many years of courtship.Life seems more beautiful each passing day.Yet there are memories to cling to,the letters exchanged,the cards and the feelings. There were rough patches too. We overcame all. Love is so powerful, I have realized again and again.
 No poetry can describe my love for you.You are too perfect sometimes and I am the opposite. I think that is what  keeping us together.That so called X factor. 
Each time I want to write about you I fall short of  adjectives. You are You. Irreplaceable. You have given me selflessly. I love you. Stay blessed :)