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Friday, August 23, 2013

Tale of my Dad


Tale of Narayanan Kutty

It was turning dark the rain was still sputtering down and the occasional lightening gave a glimpse of a watery dark world,
Narayanankutty gingerly walked along the edges of the huge temple tank filled to the brim ...with greenish blue clear water ,
one had to be very careful as one could easily slip into it and then could get into trouble ,even though Narayanankutty knew swimming in the darkness he could be disoriented and the tank was pretty deep .
The Trikandiyoor Siva Temple was said to be centuries hold with a rich tapestry of stories behind it .
its tank said to be one of the biggest was so built in order to quench the heat of Lord Sivas third eye which started at straight on the tank .
Trikandiyoor temple and its surrounding areas had lot of Nair and Brahmin houses ,amongst these was OOtil Tharavadu or family house which was so known because it once was an ootupera or food serving house for temple Brahmins .
Narayanankutty hailed from this house ,
he was the eldest son of four with two elder sisters ,his father was not a Nair he was Parameswaran Moos of the Nampoothiri clan Brahmins who specialized in Ayurvedic medical science ,
those day many moos families were well known for their medical prowess and Paremeswaran moos belonged to one of those ,generally they married into Nair families but stayed mostly in their own Manas or houses with their nephews and nieces occasionally sauntering to have a look at their children but Narayanakutty remembered his father as a very loving and caring person .
He was popular as a physician and was said to be one of the royal physicians of Travancore court ,he was often travelling there and on such occasions would be away for long stints ,he had left once for a pilgrimage to many Travancore temples once and to Sudheendram which was famous for Namboothiri pilgrims those days ,he left this world when Narayanankutty was just 10 years .
little did the small boy know that a similar fate awaited his son years later .
So now Narayanankutty stayed in the large joint family with some uncles , his mother, and siblings ,
he had to walk long distances to reach his school every day ,he would leave the house with some porridge and walk more than 8 to 10 km to reach his school , he loved studying and was extremely brilliant in his studies ,he scored the best marks always in his class to the consternation of many of his classmates better off in their facilities ,there was one particular Brahmin boy who hated the sight of Narayanakutty always being the best and once even pushed him down from a height ,
Narayanakutty was a gentle patient soul who never retorted back he took it in his stride and continued to work better .
By the time he reached home in the evening all that he would have had for his lunch was 2 bananas and a cup of tea from a nearby small shop arranged by his uncle ,he would be very hungry after the long walk back home but most of the days one of the uncles would ask him to go back to town and buy some medicines or provisions so he would wearingly trudge back again ,he was now returning from one such trip ,even after he reached home his mother would ask him to go have a bath in the tank before he could touch his food ,it would be late night before he would have some food look at his books and then go to bed .
Narayanankutty went through all this his love for studies only increased he graduated from school and college with acclaim
he was one of the earliest graduates in that area honored with medals from even the viceroy,
it was said Narayanakutty always needed help to catch his medalas and trophies in academics every annual day
his face radiated intelligence and he was adept in Sanskrit and the scriptures thanks to his father who had taught him that .
He knew he had to start working to look after his family ,
somehow he got into the field of fingerprinting ,those days this was becoming a big hit in investigative police science it appealed to Narayanakuttys intelligence and he did a course and landed a government job as a fingerprint expert .
His days would be spent on crime scenes and cataloging in his office ,he stayed in a lodge with other bachelors in several places in Tamilnadu those days called Madras state ,he rose up in this position too .
When Tamilnadu state was formed there was a chance to shift to Home department in the Tamilnadu secretariat for fingerprint officials and he promptly joined there as a juinior officer .
He was extremely hard working ,absolutely sincere and honest in any job he took . he pored into his files and was commended for his literary notes by his seniors
he went early to his office at the Fort st George opposite the beach and left late ,always walking long distances to the farthest bus stop to save money he just had a pair of neat pants and shirts trying to conserve money for his immediate and larger families as by then he had got married to Bhageerathi who was younger to him by many years .
he was staying in Mylapore at that time and the place was full of Brahmin houses ,they used to come to him to ask doubts in sanskrit and the scriptures such was his scholarly prowess he gave a part of his earnings to his family members in Tirur
he had meager needs and had no vices ,
he was keenly interested in classical carnatic mucic and used to listen to the radio for hours and also in spirituality and philosophy ,his reading was voracious .
He never laid a hand on his two children an elder girl and an younger boy
he loved them and corrected them so gently .he never raised his voice against anyone and was soft spoken while being firm in his convictions .
Once when his small son took a playing top from a wayside shop and he came to know of it he went along with him to the shop apologized to the shopkeeper his sons mistake and paid for it .
the son never forgot this lesson in his life and thought of it any time he was in a situation of taking advantage of another
And just like his father had done Narayanankutty too left his family when his son was exactly 10 years old with a heart attack .
This day is deeply imprinted in my heart for Narayanankutty or ootil Narayanan nair was my dear father
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Photo: Tale of Narayanan Kutty 

It was turning dark the rain was still sputtering down and the occasional lightening gave a glimpse of a watery dark world,
Narayanankutty gingerly walked along the edges of the huge temple tank filled to the brim with greenish blue clear water ,
one had to be very careful as one could easily slip into it and then could get into trouble ,even though Narayanankutty knew swimming in the darkness he could be disoriented and the tank was pretty deep .
The Trikandiyoor Siva Temple was said to be centuries hold with a rich tapestry of stories behind it .
its tank said to be one of the biggest was so built in order to quench the heat of Lord Sivas third eye which started at straight on the tank .
Trikandiyoor temple and its surrounding areas had lot of Nair and Brahmin houses ,amongst these was OOtil Tharavadu or family house which was so known because it once was an ootupera or food serving  house for temple Brahmins .
Narayanankutty hailed from this house ,
he was the eldest son of four with two elder sisters ,his father was not a Nair he was Parameswaran Moos of the  Nampoothiri clan Brahmins who specialized in Ayurvedic medical science ,
those day many moos families were well known for their medical prowess and Paremeswaran moos belonged to one of those ,generally they married into Nair families but stayed mostly in their own Manas or houses with their nephews and nieces occasionally sauntering to have a look at their children but Narayanakutty remembered his father as a very loving and caring person .
He was popular as a physician and was said to be one of the royal physicians of Travancore court ,he was often travelling there and on such occasions would be away for long stints ,he had left once for a pilgrimage to many Travancore temples once and to Sudheendram which was famous for Namboothiri pilgrims those days ,he left this world when Narayanankutty was just 10 years .
little did the small boy know that a similar fate awaited his son years later .
So now Narayanankutty stayed in the large joint family with some uncles , his mother, and siblings ,
he had to walk long distances to reach his school every day ,he would leave the house with some porridge and walk more than 8 to 10 km to reach his school , he loved studying and was extremely brilliant in his studies ,he scored the best marks always in his class to the consternation of many of his classmates better off in their facilities ,there was one particular Brahmin boy who hated the sight of Narayanakutty always being the best and once even pushed him down from a height ,
Narayanakutty was a gentle patient soul who never retorted back he took it in his stride and continued to work better .
By the time he reached home in the evening all that  he would have had for his lunch was 2 bananas and a cup of tea from a nearby small shop arranged by his uncle ,he would be very hungry after the long walk back home but most of the days one of the uncles would ask him to go back to town and buy some medicines or provisions so he would wearingly trudge back again ,he was now returning from one such trip ,even after he reached home his mother would ask him to go have a bath in the tank before he could touch his food ,it would be late night before he would have some food look at his books and then go to bed .
Narayanankutty went through all this his love for studies only increased he graduated from school and college with acclaim 
he was one of the earliest graduates in that area honored with medals from even the viceroy,
it was said Narayanakutty always needed help to catch his medalas and trophies in academics every annual day 
his face radiated intelligence and he was adept in Sanskrit and the scriptures thanks to his father who had taught him that .
He knew he had to start working to look after his family ,
somehow he got into the field of fingerprinting ,those days this was becoming a big hit in investigative police science it appealed to Narayanakuttys intelligence and he did a course and landed a government job as a fingerprint expert .
His days would be spent on crime scenes and cataloging in his office ,he stayed in a lodge with other bachelors in several places in Tamilnadu those days called Madras state ,he rose up in this position too .
When Tamilnadu state was formed there was a chance to shift to Home department in the Tamilnadu secretariat for fingerprint officials and he promptly joined there as a juinior officer .
He was extremely hard working ,absolutely sincere and honest in any job he took . he pored into his files and was commended for his literary notes by his seniors
he went early to his office at the Fort st George opposite the beach and left late ,always walking long distances to the farthest bus stop to save money he just had a pair of neat pants and shirts trying to conserve money for his immediate and larger families  as by then he had got married to Bhageerathi who was younger to him by many years .
he was staying in Mylapore at that time and the place was full of Brahmin houses ,they used to come to him to ask doubts in sanskrit and the scriptures such was his scholarly prowess he gave a part of his earnings to his family members in Tirur 
he had meager needs and had no vices ,
he was keenly interested in classical carnatic mucic and used to listen to the radio for hours and also in spirituality and philosophy ,his reading was voracious .
He never laid a hand on his two children an elder girl and an younger boy
 he loved them and corrected them so gently .he never raised his voice against anyone and was soft spoken while being firm in his convictions .
Once when his small son took a playing top from a wayside shop and he came to know of it he went along with him to the shop apologized to the shopkeeper his sons mistake and paid for it .
the son never forgot this lesson in his life and thought of it any time he was in a situation of taking advantage of another 
And just like his father had done Narayanankutty too left his family when his son was exactly 10 years old with a heart attack .
This day is deeply imprinted in my heart for Narayanankutty or ootil Narayanan nair was my dear father

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Kings speech ...Movie Review

The kings speech is a strange title for a movie
The classic historical drama directed by Tom Brooke is real life story of a king who had a speech defect of a stammer from his childhood and how he overcomes that to deliver historical speech of his countries entry into the second world war .
The story wrriten by David Scleider ,having heard of how king George VI had overcome his problem with the help of a speech therapist called Lionel logue and the friendship that developed between the king and this Australian citizen he started writing on it but did not relaese it till 2002 on request of Queen elizabeth the queen mother who was George VI widow till she passed away .
The film was released top great box office sucess in 2011 and won many awards .
The plot is Duke of York second son of George V  develops a stammer from his childhood and is diametrically oppoiste to the first son who was also deemed to be the king but destiny decided otherwise as Edwards III  known as David his elder brother after becoming King abdicates it as he was bent on marrying American socialite Ms Wallis who was still married to another husband .
Duke of york has littel self confidence and no aspirations to become the king though he goes  to Logue for his therapy and does all the exercises .logue delves into his childhood and tried to find the psychological cause for his disability ,he gives him confidence and asks him to think of becoming the king itself ,even though the duke behaves like a freind to Logue this angers him and he is kept away from seeing the duke .
finally he is coronated as the king at a crucial time when was clouds had gathered with Hitler invading Poland and the inevitable entry of britain into the seciond world war
The new king is expected to deliver an emotional national adress and he is mortally afraid of his ability to do so ,Logue is brought back and is there with him during the adress slinetly mouthing his speech and prodding him along ,to the queen and logue the succesful delivery of the speech done with great emothin by the king in the circumstances brings great happiness and the frindship lasts for many more years to come
the writer of this story himself had a stammer
As a child, David Seidler developed a stammer, which he believes was caused by the emotional trauma of World War II and the murder of his grandparents during the Holocaust. King George VI's success in overcoming his stammer inspired the young Seidler, "Here was a stutterer who was a king and had to give radio speeches where everyone was listening to every syllable he uttered, and yet did so with passion and intensity." When Seidler became an adult, he resolved to write about King George VI.
Colin firth acted as George VI
music was by Alexander Desplat
Excellent visuals and absorbing movie see it .

Friday, August 02, 2013

Time machine

Aroma is nostalgia ,
 distasteful smells  may remind of us of something unpleasant .
I will stick to the pleasant
our childhood memories are  full of smells
the subconscious smell of the mother is always there from our infancy this is the smell of love warmth and happiness
smells associated with fathers too are full of love and a sense of being protected
childhood food has its aroma drenched into our subliminal beings
every time we come across the same smells our primordial sense takes us into forays into our childhood
to me the smell of unripe bananas fried in coconut oil  , jackfruit  cooked in jaggery and ghee ,or raw mangoes cut into tiny pieces and cooked with coconut   reminds me of my annual  Kerala holidays.
this is a smell which is associated with the colour green and pouring rains .
my state Kerala is cocooned in a green canopy ,trees thickened with dark green leaves green pools of water flowing greenish blue rivers hills of green paddy fields swaying in the wind as green as can be the soft green  moss adorning the red granite stones and yes I would even dare to call the smell green the freshness of this fragrance can never be described it can only be approximated to be called as the smell of earth as  the smell of nature .
the morning dew and the budding flowers flitting butterflies add their aroma to the atmosphere
the rains have a smell of their own the gathering clouds darken the skies rushing adrenaline to our exited veins and suddenly it pours from the skies and the spattering rain brings its own freshness as it touches the sodden earth ,turning the ground to a squelchy mess bringing muddy nosocomial stimuli .
I am reminded of my granny , angelic in her white dress twinkling eyes adorning her fair  countenance serving me food and fresh milk in tall glasses warm from the udders of our cows .
I can still smell my grandpas snuff as he sneezed to the dismay of my granny and becomes suffused with flushing redness either due to the snuff or due to his wife's displeasure at his habits .
I can smell the dark rooms and its stuffy furniture's as along with  my cousins we played games in the the darkness of the dusk
the wind would bring us the smells of the harvest as dark bronzed bodies of women laden with the weight of bundles on their heads thrash it on the floor and the grain shifts while the husk flies into oblivion and to our nostrils giving its bouquet to our senses
smells are our time machines to our childhood savour them
 

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