The Chronicles of Miss Shola

The blog's epitaph: Miss Shola came and went as she pleased

Archive for January 2011

Young love

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The autorickshaw idled at the signal. A sliver of light from the mithai shop by the side of the road illuminated its dark interiors. In the rearview mirror she adjusted the shiny diamond bindi on her forehead and pursed her lips to see if they were still as glossy as she had last left them. She smiled and saw the dimples on her cheeks grow deeper. Her skin was glowing and she knew it had to do with the excitement within. It was just yesterday when they had met, yet she reflected on the time gone by without him – the heartache of separation last evening, the anguish of spending an entire day without seeing him, the warm sensation that made her blush when she re-lived in her mind the string of moments spent together, the yearning for his touch that had settled into a dull pain somewhere in her gut, the madness of suppressed love. The rickshaw jumpstarted and made its way through big roads, small alleys and an array of signals and with every revolution of its wheel her heart beat faster and pined for the destination a bit more.

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Written by Miss Shola

January 27, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Posted in Shorts

Hill Women

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~ Amrita Shergill, the most expensive woman painter of India, died tragically at the age of 29 in Lahore (then part of undivided India). Called sometimes as Frida Kahlo of India, the Government of India has declared her works as National Art Treasures. A postage stamp depicting her painting ‘Hill Women’ (southern Indian Brahmins) was released in 1978 in India. She is also the inspiration behind, the famous Urdu play ‘Tumhari Amrita’.

Written by Miss Shola

January 24, 2011 at 3:35 pm

Posted in Art

The dying kite

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It lay defeated, tattered, strewn,
Once red and purple, now brown and blue;
Its bridle lay limp, its frame was cracked,
The hope of triumph, it now lacked.
It had touched the skies and felt the sun,
And fluttered in glory till it was the only one;
The soldier had won the battle but now,
It lay abased among those that did bow.
Its creator had made it with skill and care,
But never did hint that there would be despair;
It realized now that even if one may rise and high,
At the end, one has to fall and die.

Written by Miss Shola

January 14, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Posted in Poetry

Life in a coffee cup

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She bit her lip again. Would he come? Would he not? Would he come? Would he not? She was playing this game that little girls play with flower petals, for the last twenty minutes in her head. He was late as usual. But unlike other times, impatience was writ all over her face today. She went over the events of last one week again, ending with her holding up the coloured dipstick in the bathroom. She was certain and told him so on the phone yesterday. He said they would find a solution together. He never lost his composure even in adversity; that was his strong point. But even ducks remain calm on the surface though they paddle as fast as they can underneath. Would he paddle away? She sighed and checked her watch – thirty minutes now. She decided to wait some more; till the very end. She called out to the waiter “Excuse me, one more coffee please!”

*

“Draw a boat sailing on the sea” said Ashima’s dadi. Ashima handed over the crayon to her Dadi to make the outline of the boat, so she could fill it with her favourite colour red. Red for Santa, red for jelly, red for her pretty swimming suit that her Papa bought her, red for her Mummy’s blood. She trembled with fear and quickly bit into her chocolate pastry. Dadi asked if everything was okay. She nodded but she knew it was not; it would never be. That nightmare would never leave her ever. But she had Dadi now and warm chubby Dada at home who would tell her a story at night before going to bed. Today he was going to complete Aladdin and his Magic Lamp. Her last thought before drifting off to sleep yesterday was if she could ask the genie of the lamp to bring her Papa and Mummy back, but only if they promised to not shout in the wee hours of the night like howling dogs.

*

He was talking animatedly about his biking trip but I wasn’t listening. I just kept admiring the arch of his eyebrows, the dimple on his chin, deep brown eyes, beauty spot above his eyebrow, clear just-shaved complexion – all too alluring. I also couldn’t help noticing the way his right arm was resting comfortably on Ria’s shoulder. Ria, the bitch. She edged out anyone that came close to a one-foot distance of him. She wasn’t even hot. There were so many girls in college who were much more attractive than her. Did she give him a good time in bed? How was he in bed? Was he aggressive? Or did he like gentle love-making? Was he a tiger? Was he a rabbit? And while I was drifting into my favourite daydream fantasy of us making out, Seema sitting next to me suddenly shouted into my ear “Vivek, want to order some more french fries?”

*

Ties always made him uncomfortable. His throat felt constricted, he couldn’t breathe easily, and felt like a pet dog on his evening walk. The clock at the top of the billing counter showed 5:00 pm dot. Any time now the man who was his ticket out of the muddle he had created, would walk in. And hopefully he would carry his worries away when he left. Nobody knew he was meeting him except Arshad bhai, his guru and confidant. Arshad bhai had also promised to have his visa in order as soon as the man he was waiting for, had found him suitable for the job in Muscat. He needed the job badly. Besides all the responsibilities at home, he had to pay the company back for the misappropriation of funds. They had made it clear that they would give him not more than three months before sending a legal notice. Today was January 15th, a month since he had been found out. Six lakhs in two months. He wished he had not been greedy for it.

*

She had been struggling to get over the writer’s block for a few weeks now. She had tried it all – change of place, change of time, change of perspective, but not one original idea struck her. And now as her fingers blazed away on the keyboard, she smiled broadly. She looked around from one table to another in the café and couldn’t believe she had her characters and plots right in front of her. She observed them closely, let her imagination loose and words just flowed. Her favourite piece so far was the undercurrent love story on the adjacent table with five college kids. It was apparent that the good looking guy was being lasciviously eyed by his fair scrawny friend. She wondered what worry was eating away that corporate woman in her black skirt. She pinned it down to marital issues. And even the sad old woman with her grand-daughter seemed to be lost in her own world. For now, she wrote down a small paragraph on each one of them. They all had the potential to be drawn out into a separate story. Stories that would fill her coming hours and days and weeks. She smacked the hot chocolate around her lips and looked at the next table.

*

Headline in Times of India

8 dead, 15 injured in café blast

Mumbai, Jan 16th 2010: Latest reports say 8 people including one six year old child were killed, and 15 injured after a bomb ripped through the popular Coffee Corner café at Charmi Street yesterday at 5:15 pm. Government sources say that the LeT is most likely behind the blast…

Written by Miss Shola

January 13, 2011 at 5:09 pm

Posted in Shorts

Bringing India home!

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Visited the Paramparik Karigar exhibition yesterday and brought a bit of Karnataka, Gujarat and Bengal into my room. And today morning it was nice to wake up to the bright and chirpy birds, the masked face who looked on from the corner of the bookshelf solemnly, and the fish suspended in air that tinkled in the soft breeze (also in focus the biggest chilly on my plant yet!)

Written by Miss Shola

January 11, 2011 at 4:57 pm

Posted in Home Projects, Shots

The first story

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Once upon a time there was an elephant that lived in a big jungle. One day he came across a small white furry animal called the rabbit. The elephant liked the cute creature and wanted to be friends with him. But the rabbit was afraid: “You’re so big and I’m tiny, what if you hurt me?” said the rabbit. But the elephant assured him that he would do no such thing; in fact, he would make the rabbit sit on his back and take him around the whole jungle, making him see places he had never seen. The rabbit was excited by this and agreed to be friends with the elephant.

Soon, the elephant and rabbit became fast friends and would meet every day. Some days they would have a small picnic of their own at different places in the jungle – by the side of the pond, under a huge banyan tree or at the base of the mountain. Then one day while they were playing, the elephant playfully picked up the rabbit with his trunk, raised him up and dropped him! The rabbit fell on the ground with a thud and hurt himself. He was very upset with the elephant and didn’t want to be friends with him anymore. He scurried back to his small home under the ground.

The elephant was remorseful; it visited the rabbit’s home every day and called out to him, but in vain. After many days like this, the elephant gave up. Then one night, there was a storm in the jungle and it rained very heavily. The next morning the elephant went to the rabbit’s home and saw that it was flooded. He was worried about his little friend and put his trunk inside the small hole to check if he was there. The poor scared rabbit that was trapped inside sat on the elephant’s trunk and came out of the hole. He was very grateful to the elephant for rescuing him, and they became friends once again.

To celebrate, the two had a big picnic near the jungle pond where they had their favourite snacks – samosas, sandwiches, wafers, gulab jamun – and invited other animals of the forest like the monkey, parrot, crow, squirrel and lion, to join in the fun.

~ And with this original story featuring animals, her mother taught little Miss Shola her first lesson in humanity that she still remembers.

Written by Miss Shola

January 10, 2011 at 4:37 pm

Posted in Ramblings, Shorts

Still Life with Absinthe

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~ Vincent Van Gogh created this in Paris in 1887. It is currently located at the Van Gogh Museum in Netherlands.

Written by Miss Shola

January 6, 2011 at 11:34 am

Posted in Art