Saturday, June 23, 2012

It goes on - now available on barnes and

My first book - It goes on - A collection of short stories is now available on Barnes and Follow the link - and let me know your comments.

Thank you for your encouragement and support over the years.. Happy Reading!!


Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Recently, my friend posted an article on Facebook about how a girl gave up her dreams of going to the US to take care of her ailing father. She said she realized when her father was ill that it was now her turn to take care of her father and forgoing her dreams was a small price to pay in return for all that he had done for her. In every person's life there comes a time when an awakening occurs and you realize the true essence of your parents in your life. For some this comes early on, for some much later in life, and for some, maybe never. Till the time you realize this, you take your parents for granted and think that no matter what you do, you can always be a child and fall back on them. It is when this awakening happens that a slight switching of roles happens and you start to nurture your parents like children. You are blessed if this awakening comes to you while your parents are alive and I am blessed.

I have had this awakening on and off, but I should admit that most times I have taken my folks for granted and expected them to be on the receiving end to all my tantrums in life. Few years ago, I bought my father the latest camera on the market, shelling out a few thousands of dollars. It was a proud moment, because eons ago I had seen him sell his favourite camera to pay my fees. It felt good to see him holding the camera and his delighted face, like that of a kid, who gets a new toy. This was when the switching of roles started and more distinctly about a year ago, when I spent some quality time with them, without any of my own responsibilities. The incident is similar to the girl's article on Facebook where she had to take care of her ailing father. I did not have to make any sacrifices, but for a few weeks I was my father's parent ensuring he used his eye drops accurately and taking him for his doctor visits.

The awakening cemented itself with my pitching in financially for the construction of our dream home. Our own house, is a dream that my family has cherished in the corner of our heart for ages. Taunting remarks from relatives has left us sore many a times, "oh you don't have your own house yet?".. "still renting eh?". Why does it matter to them, I have never understood. Nevertheless, these statements took its toll on us, sometimes. Now with the construction underway, I see the dream turning into reality in the eyes of my family. The day by day talks of the minute details of the house, feels like we are virtually putting the pieces together of a puzzle. It is during these few months, that I have assumed complete (well almost) responsibility of driving a home project at such a grand scale. And as the days pass by, I realize its nothing about the money (well it is, when it comes to paying the contractor), but the happiness and the gleam in their eyes makes it all worthwhile.

Giving back to your parents and making their life comfortable is a human thing. Some people attribute it to the East and Western culture, but I tend to disagree. It is not East or West or defined by culture, but a natural feeling everyone is born with. It is just that people from different origins show it in varying degrees.

I am firm believer of enjoy it while you have it. You never know what is in store for you tomorrow, for that matter, even the next moment. So while you have your parents, wherever you are geographically located, provide for them, not the materials, but the feeling that you care. That you have made an attempt to understand all the sacrifices they have made to bring you up from an eight or nine ounce baby to a five plus foot tall human being, with emotions, a mind to think freely and make decisions to brace the world and life. Doesn't matter if you are a girl or boy or belong to a culture where boys are providers and girls are receivers (something that I totally detest), make an attempt to understand them and be a part of their every days. You may be living away from them, take five minutes out of your day, to call them and ask about their day. They may not be doing anything exciting, but the feeling that you care about their day, makes a difference. It is recently that I started calling my parents everyday, and I know what difference it makes to them. And for me, its like my daily system boot, more relaxing than music.

I am finally 'awakened' and I realize fully well, that I owe myself and everything I am to my folks back home.

PS - Also read this on Maya Patikkal

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Launching "Maya Patikkal - The Official Website"

Dear Friends,

A novel idea from my friend Reshmi started off this blog - Falling Leaves. A few inspirations drawn from life bridged the way to short stories. And now, there is a collection. My first book - It Goes On - A collection of short stories, is in its metamorphosis stage. So it is time to have an official website to promote my book and that is "Maya Patikkal - The Official Website".

I request you to visit the site and leave your comments and feedback. Once again thank you for your continue encouragement and support.

Warm Regards
Maya Patikkal

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Agony of the leaves

Dried tea leaves placed in beautiful china, drenched by the slow yet intense heat of the stream of trickling water. They unfurl, and dance to emit vibrant colors to the tune of the droplets, letting the water to waltz with its flavor in perfect harmony. The music continues, till the tea leaves can move no more, devoid of its flavor to the last molecule. The rhythm of the boiling molecules fades, and the tea leaves settle down at the bottom of the beautiful china.
This is the story of every tea leaf. Like the wick of the candle that burns to bring light in darkness, the tea leaf knowing that it is going to wilt soon, dances brilliantly to add that tinge of flavor to every cup of tea.
There is poetry in its dance; there is romance in its unfurling. But in its agony lies a great taste that tantalizes the taste buds. A cup of tea - a ritual, a habit, a companion for gossip, a rejuvenator of thoughts, whatever you call it, you would not think of the agony of the leaves when you sip this amazing drink called tea.
It was not until recently that I started enjoying my cup of tea. I always thought I liked coffee better. But when the coffee at work made me feel sick, I switched to tea or tea bags. And mmmm.. I must say, I have started looking forward to that cup of tea. Today when I came back after making myself a cup of tea, I looked up the word ‘tea’ on Google. My favorite Wikipedia told me the history behind the drink that I was sipping and had started to enjoy. What caught my attention is the agony of the leaves.
It takes almost twelve years for this tiny leaf to grow and actually be ready to dance in somebody’s teapot. All for that one moment, the final waltz…
Tea is the most common drink in India, and each dialect has its own name – chaha (kannada), chaaya (Malayalam), chai (hindi), chaaya (telugu) and many more. And every time it’s made, every way its made, it tastes different, giving itself its unique identity. Like the variety of names for ‘chai’ the variety of sources is also huge and sometimes humorous. The “roadside tea” served at the stalls by the roads pour the tea from such a height and it falls perfectly in the narrow glass frothing up with bubbles from the milk. The “canister tea” served in tea stalls have it pre-made in a big canister with a tap. You do wonder if the canister has been washed, but nevertheless enjoy the tea. Then the “luxury tea” served in exquisite china that you may forget to enjoy the taste for the fear of breaking the cup. The “visiting tea” served when you visit someone’s place, so much so that the hosts think, that if they serve any less, then it would be an insult; And you the guest, wondering how you may politely ask to reduce the level of tea in the cup. “My-mothers-tea” that most people claim to be the best tea, in the world, even if it is just to make the mother happy. Then the “high tea” and “low tea” and somewhere in between, categories defined by the “high” “low” and somewhere in between people, incomprehensible to me. Oh and the “work tea” which you consume when you want to take a break from work, or to enjoy a chat with your friends at work, or to release pressure. This is self-made and you can make it, as you like it. “Rainy day tea” made and sipped piping hot on rainy days, relaxing on a chair, looking at the drops of rain playing music. And last, but not the least. “just-like-that tea” - there is no rhyme or reason, but you just have tea, because you have nothing else to do.
Tea, however it is made and however consumed will not fail to tantalize your taste buds, reminding you of the waltz that made the tea leaf alive.