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Weekly Photo Challenge: Let There Be Light

When I saw this week’s challenge, I thought, “Oh! This is going to be fun! I have loads of pictures just right for this theme.” As I went through my pictures and others’ too, I realized how lucky I was that I could see the wonders and the beauty of this world, feel awed and inspired by them and enjoy them. But there are many who are deprived of experiencing this joy.

In India, it is estimated, there are 3.5 million cases of blindness with 30,000 new cases being added every year. Corneal blindness is the most common causes of blindness in India. The good part is that most such cases can regain their eyesight by corneal transplant, and the sad part is that not enough corneas are available to bring light and hope to these people. Lack of awareness about eye donation is a major hazard in this direction and even though a lot of effort is being made by the government and other agencies the situation is far from bright.

As a small contribution on my part, I pledged to donate my eyes a few years back and hope that someday I’ll bring Light into someone’s life.

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UUU Challenge

When monsoons arrive, vendors arrive and set up shop on the pavements. The eyes are drawn to these colorful umbrellas as they cover up the sidewalks.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Masterpiece

I’d intended to do this post as such but when I saw this week’s challenge I thought that it would be appropriate to set it here. A little story first.

I remember, as a kid I loved to sit on my dad’s lap and ask him to draw me pictures of anything and everything that came to my mind. A bird, a house, an elephant, a tiger, a horse, I would demand and he would just pull a few lines on the paper and lo! it would be there. The tradition was carried on by my brother, and later by our children. Apart from that we never saw him indulge in any kind of art work. He is an engineer by profession and spent his life with machines . For us he was a genius with maths and physics and chemistry and with his help all our problems in these subjects seemed to vanish.

Then, he retired. He spent the initial years of his retirement settling down in this new way of life. One day he picked up his pencils and colours and started sketching and painting. His paintings surprised and shocked us. He does not yet paint from his imagination but just picks up an idea from a book, magazine or a  postcard and paints on any surface that takes his fancy or is available at that time, like paper, canvas, plywood board or even tiles.But for us they are nothing short of Masterpieces-

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IMG_0632These are sketches of my daughter and my nephew

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Happy Second Anniversary

Had a busy-busy last week, and didn’t get the time to log on but when I did, I was gently reminded by WordPress that I had passed my second anniversary of  of being on this blog. So this is a good time as any to take stock.

It has been an eventful year. I’d decided last year that I would do more posts about India, it’s people, it’s festivals and culture. I can’t say I’ve done a great job but I’ve tried, honestly. India is a large country, with a huge spectrum of cultures belonging to the different regions. The people are different and yet the same. The quest shall continue. I’ll have to shed some inhibitions though, because whenever I try to take pictures in a crowd or in public, I suddenly become the centre of attention. The moment the people see a woman (me)with a big camera (read DSLR) moving among them, taking pictures, they think I’m some press reporter from the local newspaper. I can almost see them going nudge-nudge, whispering, “she’s from the news paper, she’s from the news paper”. Then they try to get my attention or get me to take their pictures, the older ones will push their kids in front and beg me to take their photos. It becomes funny and embarrassing at times.

Also, somewhere during the last few months, I crossed another milestone; that of completing my 100th post. Now that may not be a big deal for most of the bloggers here but for me it was. I’d started this blog with a lot of apprehensions, not knowing how far I’ll be able to go, what I’ll write about and what I’ll share and learn. But this has been a beautiful journey so far. I’ve learnt so much about people and places, have stood corrected on so many of my preconceived notions about certain people and cultures and I’ve learnt to view the world around me with a more open mind and without being too judgemental.

And now the awards-

During the course of this year some of my fellow bloggers were really kind to bestow a few awards on me. I’d like to mention them and their blogs with a big thank you..

First it was Eva from Healthy glow Nutrition who nominated me for ‘A very Inspiring Blogger’ award.

Then again she was kind enough to nominate me for yet another award- ‘the Leibster award’.

Next was the ‘Beautiful Blogger award’  that was bestowed upon me by TKSoni from his blog ‘and life smiles

And most recently, Deb from ‘unexpectedincommonhours, nominated me for the ‘Leibster Award’

I thank them all from the bottom of my heart.

‘But why haven’t I accepted the awards?’ you may ask. Wellll! The problem lies with me. The first time I got an award, I was relatively new to blogging. I tried to accept the award, and get the picture of the award on my page but somehow managed to bungle it all up, and made a complete mess of the whole situation. After that experience I’ve developed a sort of a phobia for trying to accept the awards. Add to it another fear, of that of sharing a few things about myself, as one of the requirements for accepting most of the awards.

Now if I were a celebrity anything and everything about me would make an interesting read. My readers would be dying to know more. Maybe then I could get away with disclosures like-

I love to sleep in my pyjamas.

I got a tattoo of my ex somewhere and I’m desperately trying to find it.

I eat only grass in this extremely amazing diet that I’m following.

I love Calvin-Klein… Calvin and Hobbs…  and so on.

But sadly that’s not the case and I, for the life of me, cannot think of anything interesting enough about me that will increase the traffic to my page. So I would like to say a big thank you once again and hope that some day I’ll find the courage to accept the awards.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who’ve liked my posts and followed my blog. I haven’t been able to acknowledge everyone and for that I’m sorry. I shall try to rectify this slowly but surely.

Now for the coming year, I have not made any specific plans as I’ve gotten a bit busy with my job as a teacher and that takes up a lot of my time and energy, but one thing’s for sure.. I’ll still be posting, as regularly as possible. Maybe I’ll get to share some teaching anecdotes with everyone, as I’ve already realised that teaching adolescent students is one big lesson in itself.   I would also like to learn the art of taking better pictures than just ‘aim and shoot’ varieties, so cross my fingers for that.

Signing out with that. Hope to continue receiving love, appreciation and feed-backs from my readers.

Travel Theme: Peaceful

When I saw this last week’s travel theme, ‘Peaceful’ the pictures that came to my mind were those taken in Ladakh. I know, I’ve done a lot of posts with a lot of pictures from that place but I just can’t seem to get over that place. The pictures that I post here are taken during our visit to the Diksit monastery. The route, and the place itself made you feel at peace- with the world and with your self.

leh 467The white sand desert of Nubra valley in Ladakh.

leh 490The monastery is built into the slope of a hill, hence the climb..

leh 470The giant statue of Buddha on the hill opposite to the monastery..

leh 492The monks’ quarters

leh 491The bells

leh 503In deep contemplation!!

leh 513The Buddha!!

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P.S. have used some of these pictures in my earlier posts also but I thought they fit here just fine…