Grab a cuppa, tell a story or listen to one.

Everyone loves stories. Everyone has a story to tell.


Piya Mukherjee

Henry : The Special Visitor

Henry is nine year’s old. Like most children his age, he loves to play. But he prefers to play by himself on the bars in the school playground. He flips on them, hangs upside down and catches the sunshine. He likes to walk and wander around the school. He stops in front of every classroom and intently watches the art display on the windows. He smiles a lot but does not like talking as much.

It was my day of volunteering in the third grade classroom. I had crossed paths with Henry while picking supplies from the office and making trips to drop them in the classroom. Amidst the cacophony of a school recess, I had noticed him pay attention to everything that other’s were not paying attention to.

Continue reading “Henry : The Special Visitor”

Do the curls or the makeup really matter ?

There are few times in a year that I wake up in the morning to wear formal attire, do my hair, put a little kohl under my eyes and slip into my heels. This is rare as most of the days you would find me in my jeans and converse, sans any makeup and my hair staying whichever way they decided to stay that day. But on those few mornings, I make a little effort as I ready myself for my business meetings.

It is not necessary to do any of that but I cannot walk into those meetings in my jeans and converse either. Most often, I leave things mid-way. This morning I leave dabbing the concealer on the dark acne scars halfway through. I remind myself that it does not matter. There are far more important things in the world than my acne scars. I take a final glance and notice that my hair has decided to behave today. The natural curls are not standing out and are obediently falling on my shoulders. I rarely have a good hair day.

Continue reading “Do the curls or the makeup really matter ?”

Kitaab World : Diverse Is Beautiful

I love reading children’s books. Picture books with colored illustrations are my favorite. I enjoy them as much as my children, sometimes even more than them. But as I read them “The Day The Crayons Came Home” or the Elephant and the Piggie books or even the classics like the Red Riding Hood, I also crave to read to them books that I have grown up reading. The Panchatantra, The Folk Tales from India, Akbar Birbal, Goplal Bhad (in Bengali) and many others. I would put in a request to whoever was traveling to India to get some books or search on Amazon like a mad woman.  Continue reading “Kitaab World : Diverse Is Beautiful”

The Gray Matters In Life

I am itching to write something. I have not written anything in a long while. But I don’t know what to write. It is just a longing that comes from within, without an agenda associated to it. So I stare at the blank screen for some indefinite time and then type these few lines in a jiffy. What if they were to vanish too ?
Nah! It’s not the writer’s block. I have enough  stories to tell. I just do not know how to put words to most of them. I do not know if I know how to tell them.

Continue reading “The Gray Matters In Life”

It’s A Beautiful Day Today !

After the alarm clock had snoozed infinite times, with tugs of sleep still pulling my eyelids tightly, I struggled to see the time on my phone. 7:30am!! The alarm had been snoozing for past hour and we had 45 mins to get out of the door so that no one is late for where they need to get to.

Continue reading “It’s A Beautiful Day Today !”

The Turquoise Scarf

It is little after ten in the morning. The early birds have left and the regulars have settled in. The café is quiet except for the usual sound of the espresso machine and a grand piano being played at the far end. There is discussion about Trump and the presidential election happening on one of the tables.  A charity event is being strategized on another. A few people sit huddled at an oblong table, fixated to their screens and typing away to glory. A group of women, in hiking gears, are engrossed in a late morning breakfast of croissants and latte while discussing all things in life. 

Continue reading “The Turquoise Scarf”

Some Uber People -2

Last week, the story “Some Uber People” was a surprise hit. I have heard so many stories since from our readers and friends.  I realized I was not the only listening to such stories. The stories are not restricted to cab drivers. The Hair Dresser, the baker at the local bakery, the barista at a near by Starbucks, the mail man and many more everyday people.  I am inspired to start a series of such stories. 

Continue reading “Some Uber People -2”

Some Uber People

Another year will soon come to an end. Like every year, my retrospection has begun. I have had this good / bad habit of doing it every December since childhood, one that I try hard but cannot get rid of. This year as I look back, one of the things I realize is I did not write as much as I wanted to. I did not share all the stories that I scribbled in Evernote or some compartment of my head so that I could tell them later.

Continue reading “Some Uber People”

Waiting For The Moon Or Not, Respect Ritualistic Choices

Every year around this day, there are hoards of posts on the Internet discussing the insanity of the rituals related to Karva chauth. For the uninitiated, the wiki link may be helpful. A woman fasting for her man, praying for the longevity of his life, waiting to see the moon before eating the first morsel of food, even the first drop of water and the man doing practically nothing in return. It may sound bizarre to many. Only very few men take it upon themselves to practice what the spouse does. 

Those opinions are right in many ways, there is no argument there. What I personally do not appreciate about many of those discussions and conversations is how they look down upon women who actually believe in and follow the ritual. Most of the times, it is women coming out with their feminist armor and criticizing another woman. Rituals are a matter of choice just as religion and faith is. We often tend to forget that.
I understand many women follow rituals due to family and societal pressure. But many do it of their own choice and do it their own way. I would rather not judge any one. 
I am one of those who does it out of choice. No one was asked me to follow the norm. I don’t do it for the longevity of my husband’s life either. I have always prayed that may none of us outlive the other, though I know it is inevitable. It will happen someday. I instead pray for the longevity of the beautiful life that we have created together. Our companionship, our unsaid understanding of each other, our struggles, our shortcomings, our triumphs and our unconditional love for our children and everything else we have built together, all on our own. 
I do not follow all the rituals. I will be honest I do not know them either. I grew up in a family where this ritual was not observed. Yes, unlike what Bollywood shows, this is a ritual followed by only some married women of Indian origin.
I have never put henna on my hands nor have I dressed up like a bride on the day of the fast. I have never got gifts or hampers. I have never prayed with a group of women together. I prefer to pray for the sanctity of my love in privacy. I do not see the man through the sieve when the moon comes up. Seeing him in the eye under a moonlit night is more romantic instead.
I do not rush to see the moon as soon as it comes out. I am shy, I like it to be private. I step out when everyone has finished sighting the moon, when the moon is no longer playing hide and seek in the clouds. It is usually shining bright under us by the time we have stepped out to see it. A moonlit night and the man next to me, I pray silently for it to be that way for many more years to come. I know he makes a similar wish too. 
There are years he has driven me around to find the moon, when we have sneaked out of a dinner with friends to see the moon together and years when my daughter has gone moon hunting (as she calls it) for me. There are years I have fasted without a drop of water till the moonrise and there have been years of nursing and pregnancy that I have skipped the fasting altogether. Last year I ran a 5k on the same day, for a cause close to my heart, so it was important to keep myself hydrated. But every year,nevertheless, I wait for the moon this one night of the year.
I will do it this year too.
Adherence to a ritual and its sheer existence has always evolved with time. There isn’t a diktat written somewhere. I have not seen one. There are no set rules. They are more like man made societal norms.  So instead of following them blindly, do what your heart says and believes in.
For me, this is a time to celebrate love and companionship, albeit a little traditionally. So I do it my own way. How can there be a set norm of celebrating love? For those of you who observe this day, you may fast or not, you may dress like a bride or not, but do celebrate love. Heck, do nothing but pop a bottle of champagne that night under a moonlit sky and share a moment of love.  

For those that don’t observe the day, you can pop a bottle too. There is no harm. But I make an earnest request to be respectful to women who believe in the ritual. Be respectful of other’s faith and rituals and choices. As for feminism and gender equality, I believe in all of that. But seriously, lets not drag that into every thing.  There are far more important things to be discussed and tackled than fasting on Karva chauth.

Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑