The joys of communication…

If we were having coffee, you will find me looking happy, eager to share the joys of last couple of weeks. It all began six months ago when a dear friend from high school days texted to inform that she and her family were planning a holiday in San Francisco and would spend time with us. Happiness quotient number one!

A few weeks back, another friend from the same era of high school texted to check what we were up to during the spring break as she wished to swing by with her middle schoolers. Happiness quotient number two.

And finally another high school friend texted to check if we were available since she was using the spring break to look at California colleges for her son. Happiness quotient number three. One traveled 8000 plus miles and others about 3000 and the meets were much looked forward to until they happened and were over in fraction of moments. Or so they seemed. One of them had taught us a song when we were in grade 5 and we remembered the same twenty five plus years on now and could still sing and giggle over it. We talked about our introduction to Mills & Boon and similar novels and laughed as well as shuddered on recollection of the nonsense we could read. We spoke about bike rides to school and back and how one of us always walked her bike at intersections until she was told she could ride it too. Lovely girls that I grew up with in a small town of India, now accomplished women with beautiful families, all settled in different parts of the globe planning holidays in a way that involved meeting a friend and her family living in California. Simply to catch up. 

I find that those born in 1960s/70s are more comfortable with facebook rather than instagram or twitter and are able to stay connected with general happenings in each other’s lives. Whatsapp messaging groups have hugely caught on and now I find that I mute my phone before going to bed as friends and family in both Australia and Asia become active at the time with jokes, events and news flying across the globe. I often get more news from them when I wake up rather than the Walls Street Journal that is yet to be picked up from the driveway. One morning last week I woke with innumerable messages, topping them was one from my brother-in -law in Kolkata saying he was fine. I smiled and said to the husband, well am glad he is fine until I read the other messages from friends who wished to know that he was well which got my antenna alert and I realized that a bridge that was under construction had fallen, killing many and injuring lot more in the city he lives in.

lifebuzz-6153041d1376ea55927a08583cf4c5ce-limit_2000Texting is more prevalent than talking and I realize those who wish to stay connected manage to do so despite their busy schedules. I love that my nephews share jokes and what they are up to, including pictures of their newly acquired cooking skills on the family whatsapp group. Though I admit that the new abbreviated text language is slowly, surely, painfully killing my understanding. Despite some of my friends living in Australia, Singapore and India, the huge distance or time difference is hardly a deterrent to our virtual conversations that are not bound by any time or place.

The world is changing, shrinking, coming closer, looking farther as well as further, with distances becoming quite irrelevant. Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal had an article about the world’s longest flights and the new records as of last month with the immense dip in fuel prices. Emirates now flies non stop from Auckland, New Zealand to Dubai for 17 plus hours beating the record of Quantas’s Dallas-Sydney route of 16 hours plus. I find it quite intriguing as I realize the sheer size of the United States when I think that the flying time between Singapore and Mumbai is the same as between the East coast and the West coast!

It is 7:26 pm on my computer and I see that my whatsapp is full of messages from the buddies waking up or going to work in countries where the sun has risen and they think of sharing something with their friend across the world where the sun is setting….




A Tale of Two Beverages…

If we were having coffee…

It would be made by the hubby as I amongst many others vouch by its aroma, taste and what it does to you and your senses since he makes it with the concentration of an artist painting a picture or a sculpture moulding his new work or even a scientist engaged in an intriguing experiment.

I am a novice blogger,  just a fortnight old actually and it was a pleasure, generating much excitement when I came across weekend coffee share hosted by Diana from Part Time Monster. A fantastic idea and place to read many thoughts, point of views and broaden one’s horizon be it on gardening, poetry, education, cooking, current affairs or coffee, it covers all.  A big thank you to Diana and all contributors.

How-do-you-take-your-coffee-cartoonFor my first weekend coffee share, lets talk about, just that- coffee. I must admit that I love my tea, am an Indian after all and I also admit that I am not a nice person to be around if my morning cuppa or the 4.00 pm yellow label lovingly brewed with Darjeeling has been missed and this stayed so for the first thirty odd years of my life until we moved to Melbourne, Australia and I discovered coffee. I realized this rich brown or black liquid is really an art, a prayer, something sacred to the Australians and they took it very seriously. The phrase when in Rome be a Roman was not difficult to inculcate as the adults in the family fell in love with the coffee there. Apart from the usual latte, cappuccino, espresso we were introduced to some new entities called long black, short black, flat white, macchiato, short macchiato, long macchiato, double shot, skinny latte and most prefer it hot and strong.

India is very diverse where most of South India prefers coffee over tea and are comparable to the coffee snobs of Australia just how the British and most of north India are connoisseurs of tea. South Indians vouch by their filter coffee where the coffee drips down from the top container to the bottom and most homes keep a decoction ready to go. Years ago on a trip to Italy we were surprised to find stove top coffee maker where the decoction rose up from down, just the opposite of the South Indian filter coffee. I don’t think I ever drank coffee during our years in Tokyo, always drinking tea very daintily from delicate looking beautiful cups. I did say, when in Rome….

And then we moved to America and encountered Starbucks! Meaning no offense and with due apologies to Starbucks lovers, the less said the better. It took us months to get accustomed to the fact that the tall is short, grande is medium and venti is a bucket full of coffee. I believe there is something bigger than the bucket called trenta, lets call it simply the coffee pond. Coffee in Starbucks is as different from Melbourne coffee as chalk is from cheese and I laugh every time a visiting Aussie murmurs a tad embarrassedly, trying not to sound rude, er where can I find coffee, a good cup of coffee!

Tea or coffee, I would say majority of humans are addicted to them in different colors, forms, types, sugared, plain, hot, cold whatever, they like it. But when I think back to my childhood and my grandma’s pet parrot whose body clock told her it was 3 pm precisely at 3 pm and she banged her little steel bowl screeching loudly Maaaaa Teaaaaa….I know no beverage whether coffee or tea is to be taken lightly…

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