Vani’s Musings

It is said often, that Ignorance is bliss. While it pays to be wise about many things in the world, it’s also equally true that half knowledge is dangerous.


I was watching a quiz show on one of the Kannada Channels on TV, and one of the questions involved completing a proverb. It went something like this “ A person with half knowledge makes a great noise about himself.”


I recollect an incident where such half knowledge made me worry about myself needlessly and give more attention to myself than necessary. It’s quite an embarrassment in hindsight; but I wish to still share it.


It was 2 years ago, around the time of Krishna Janmashtami, that I suddenly started experiencing a curious burning sensation in my palms.


I ignored it for quite a while, thinking that I was probably hallucinating about the whole thing, but it refused to go away, and only got worse day by day, ultimately one such time came when I could not ignore it any longer. I was unsure about seeing a doctor for this, and felt that since I had the Internet at my command, I would try to find out more about what was causing this peculiar problem. And so, I googled this. I came across several sites that gave me lot of possible reasons for this, and the most common feature or explanation on most of the sites was that this could be a symptom of Diabetes. Genetically I am a high-risk candidate for this condition and so I felt that probably Diabetes was making a presence in my life too.


I needed to find out if Diabetes had set in, and for that I needed to take a blood test. Again, I didn’t get the courage to see a doctor to get a requisition for a blood test. I was starting to worry about how I’d tell my parents if I really was diabetic and how I’d manage with it the rest of my life.


It took me another week or so to get the courage to go ahead and take the test.

We have a glucometer at home that is used by my mom and uncle to check their blood sugar levels from time to time, and I decided that I’d take the blood test at home.


It was the day before Janmashtami, and all the elders were in the kitchen preparing for the festival, and so I felt it was the right time for me to face the demon. I took the test and waited for a whole agonizing minute for the result to show up. Believe me, that was the longest minute of my life.


The result came; my random blood sugar level was some 69 or 70. Now I was again not sure whether this was an ok value. I then took a very fast decision to call dad’s cousin who is a doctor at NIMHANS, to check if everything was all right.


The first thing she told me when I told her the whole story was, “There’s nothing wrong with you physically; mentally I’m not sure, you can drop in anytime to verify.”

Then she went on to assure me that what I experienced was caused more often by simple calcium deficiency than anything else and that I had to drink a glass of milk every day to bring up the calcium.


The relief I experienced at this is something I cannot describe in words. But the only good thing about the whole episode was that it made me aware of what I was eating, how I needed to change my lifestyle and how I was wrongly analyzing information.


Have any of you experienced anything like this? Do write in.









Hi People,

It’s been ages since I wrote anything here, what with a bout of seasonal illness and the consequential extra work at office……………

We celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi today on a moderate scale, partly because we are not in our permanent residence and partly because a very close relative is in hospital.

After the feast in the afternoon, I was browsing, and stumbled upon this beautiful explanation regarding Ganesha.

Here it is for all of you, courtesy


May the good Lord shower all his grace on all of us for the coming year. Hope you all had a wonderful festival too.

If I were asked to list out things I hate about the people around me, I’d probably put one vice more prominently than anything else, and that would be Channel Surfing.


I am not much of a TV person, and my average TV time in a day is around 30 minutes, sometimes stretching to an hour. But most of the time, these 30 minutes are punctuated with arguments and disagreements about why a particular show must or must not be watched, because of the men around me who are particularly fond of this hateful exercise called Channel Surfing.


Wiki  says that Channel Surfing is the practice of quickly scanning through different radio or television frequencies in order to find something interesiting to listen to or watch, and is also linked with laziness, inattention and hyperactivity. Wiki  also says that it’s a very common feature among men, though women are not immune to it. I myself am no exception, but my Channel Surfing is limited to the radio on my phone, and I guess I’d be only disturbing myself in the process.


What irks me is that the men in my house pick the exact moment to surf  channels on TV when a show would just about be getting interesting, and no amount of protesting stops it.


Worse, there are uncalled for and unrequired comments about the stupidity of the show, and how the anchor or the artistes are sloppily dressed, their drab and emotionless dialog delivery, and ultimately how we women are hooked to silly shows, and how they men are very “intellectually inclined”.


At this stage, we generally give up , and tell them we’d be happy to watch anything they want to. Then they don’t stick to one channel….I think their attention to each channel is hardly 5 secs, and I cannot fathom for heaven what conclusion they can draw about a program in 5 secs.


All they like is the 1500th rerun of some program on Discovery Channel where a tiger runs off with the carcass of a deer, and the gory scenes of the tiger ripping the deer apart with some silly monologue is repeated and repeated again.


Then the news channels. On them, I can write reams……………..the same news, repeated in quarter hourly intervals, in different versions on different channels. So are they satisfied watching one of  them? No. They want to go to another news channel to find out if someone is telling them the same thing in yet another version.


Why is it that they are unable to actually sit through a program for 30 mins?

Is it that they feel they aren’t being given enough attention? Or the very thought of interrrupting what others are watching gives them some sort of high?


I wish we had only good old DD, and everyone would then be compelled to watch one program at a time, and I could throw the remote away. But what with the advent of more channels, I think I’m fighting a losing battle. And I’m sure several of you out there agree with me.









My colleagues and I had to attend a wedding reception last evening, and the venue was opposite a famous park in Bangalore.


Since we were earlier than the wedding party itself, we decided to spend time in the park. We made use of the opportunity to explore the park and went inside hoping to get some fresh air and exercise our jaded minds and work weary bodies. It was more than what we bargained for, and we enjoyed a stroll in the park, and also found that there were a couple of swings, and so had a royal time on the swing and one of my colleagues also played the roundabout.


It had been ages since we had had so much fun, and the whole trip unloaded us of all the stress baggage we had been carrying for the past week, what with severe pressure at work.


B had been a teacher before he switched jobs remembered this poem “The Rainbow” by William Wordsworth and said that the visit unleashed the child in him.


So here it is for memory’s sake.


The Rainbow


My heart leaps up when I behold
A Rainbow in the sky:
So was it when my life began;
So is it now I am a man;
So be it when I shall grow old,
Or let me die!
The Child is father of the man;
And I wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.


William Wordsworth

Last Week was hell……….first I lost Cash, and the next instance, within just a couple of days, I lost my cell phone L.


Both times I had been distracted, first time when I lost cash, it was because of the incessant ringing of the phone, and then when it was the phone, I was called by my higher-ups and so had been to answer the call of duty.


I had been utterly careless on both occasions, and felt that it was a fitting alarm for me to be more careful about my belongings in future.


It’s been really bad. I’m not able to digest that my phone is no longer with me, considering that I had purchased it after waiting quite long to update the previous instrument, which was nearly 4 years old. I wanted some particular features that were available on the particular model that I had chosen, and the black color was very elegant.


And the worst thing is that all my important contact numbers are now gone for ever. Of course, I did get my SIM blocked instantly and had a duplicate SIM within hours, but the phone not working depressed me no end.


One of my co-workers has been kind enough to lend me his spare handset to use until I get another instrument, and the instrument is not one that I am comfortable handling. But since beggars cant be choosers, I am making do with it.


The Phone Company no doubt gave me a duplicate SIM, but to add insult to injury, they said that the new SIM was not “matching” the old one and I made endless calls to Customer Care who did not guide me correctly as to the remedial procedure.


Anyway, finally, after 3 long days, I found that my borrowed phone had a network connection and was working. Now it is time to store numbers, which is a huge task in itself.


Anyways, that’s my story of being incommunicado and feeling helpless. It’s not been long since Cell phones entered our lives, but just an hour without them makes us feel that we’re hopelessly lost.


I’d like to use this post to caution all my readers to be more careful with their belongings and not repent for lost stuff like I’m doing right now.




It was a lazy Sunday afternoon, Dad was out on work that emerged all of a sudden, cousins out to fulfill some social obligations and mom’s the only company I had.

Since I felt jaded being home all day, I felt the need to go out and take a long walk to clear out the cobwebs of the brain and get prepared for what is going to be a hectic week ahead.


As we are in Malleswaram, it’s easy to persuade mom to go out with me, since we both love walking down 8th Cross and window-shopping, making a mental list of things that we feel we need, but never really get around to buying.


So off we went, on a long walk from 11th Cross to 3rd Cross in Malleswaram.


The Walk made us hungry and we decided to head for a snack at one of the sundry eat-outs of the area. We have visited the usual haunts like Janatha, CTR, Asha Food Camp and New Krishna Bhavan umpteen times, we decided to head towards Halli Mane, another famous eatery in the area, one that we were visiting for the first time, in spite of having lived in and loafed around Malleswaram for so long.


Now here is where I would caution people not to expect much, going by the name, which literally means a village house. We had expected some rural food items that we wouldn’t usually see on our plates each day, but were thoroughly disappointed to see that the menu consisted of the usual Dosa-Idli fare, to mention nothing about the large array of North Indian items on the menu. Are the traditional village homes in Karnataka serving Vegetable Kadaai and Chana Bhatura to their visitors? Beats me.


The only additions were Akki Roti and Ragi Roti, which are now served in most of the Darshinis lining the city.


Mom ordered a Rava Idli and I had an Onion Dosa, both being nothing different from the same items served across other hotels in the area.


What I didn’t understand was the hype associated with the place…. and there were people eating there simply because the name meant something.


I wonder how these restaurants are rated…. are there journalists who actually sample the fare and then write about it? Or there are other ways to get your name promoted?


I don’t know. I felt that the customer must be the judge of whether or not an eatery is good, and the best publicity is by word of mouth, because it is the taste that ultimately lingers in the mind.







During my journeys by BMTC each day, the usual practice I follow is to plug the radio on in my phone and surf the sundry radio channels. It’s a surefire medicine for the boredom endured on journeys that are usually made long and tiresome because of traffic snarls.


Most of the time I am successful in finding a frequency that plays my kind of music and settle down with it.


But sometimes, the same songs are played on two or more stations, and the jarring notes get on my nerves and I switch off the radio. It is moments like these that give me ample opportunity to observe the sea of humanity around me.


And one of several such occasions is when I noticed the different variety of bangles worn by women surrounding me. An old song talking of bangles that was playing on the radio in the bus triggered it off.


It’s really amazing to note that at least 99% of the women would be wearing bangles. Rare are exceptions like me who keep hands unadorned.


I find different sorts of bangles on each hand………. Bangles of different shapes and sizes, different colors and different textures. By observing the bangles, one can get a fair idea about the women, however their clothes may blend with the others.


The college girls wear plastic bangles and wide metal bracelets, in myriad shapes. The workingwomen’s wrists are adorned with a couple of glass or metal bangles, usually matching their outfit.


I did a bit of research on the different sorts of bangles and came to this result………..


The most common type of bangles: Glass (usually red or green in color)

I find a lot of newly wed women wearing black glass bangles too.

Lac Bangles: Usually the college set’s choice…. what one may call “chunky jewelry”. Very fragile, and need delicate handling.


Metal Bangles: Worn in dozens…I’ve seen and know women who own a dozen metal bangles in all the color outfits they possess.


Gold Bangles: Adorn mostly slightly middle-aged wrists…not that youngsters do not wear gold bangles, but more commonly seen in the elder set.


 Wiki  says, “Normally, a bangle as worn by people around the world is simply an inflexible piece of jewelry worn around the wrist. However, in many cultures, especially in the Arabian Peninsula and in South Asia, bangles have evolved into various types in which different ones are used at different occasions.”


I wonder what the significance of wearing bangles is…is it purely an ornamental feature? Or is it some sort of tradition?  Whatever, they look good on the hands they are worn, and the sound of the bangles is one of the most melodious sounds ever produced.


PS: Most of my seniors and lady co-workers keep harping that I have to wear bangles….can anyone please give me a logical reason why I mustn’t leave my wrists unadorned?