Meet and Greet: 1/7/17

Link party with Danny

Dream Big, Dream Often

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It’s the Meet and Greet weekend everyone!!    

Ok so here are the rules:

  1. Leave a link to your page or post in the comments of this post.
  2. Reblog this post.  It helps you, it helps me, it helps everyone!
  3. Edit your reblog post and add tags.
  4. Feel free to leave your link multiple times!  It is okay to update your link for more exposure every day if you want.  It is up to you!

  5. Share this post on social media.  Many of my non-blogger friends love that I put the Meet n Greet on Facebook and Twitter because they find new blogs to follow.

See ya on Monday!!

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#JusJoJan Daily Prompt – Jan. 16th/17- Impenetrable

I imagine a fort at Jericho, across the Dead Sea from Jordan in what is now the West Bank. It must have been a good 3000 years ago. One man stood looking up at what must have been impenetrable walls. The walled city was the first civilized settlement the Israelites came across when they reached the Promised Land. Joshua was on scout duty- he needed to find out how impenetrable the barrier was. He could not trust anyone else with the task of finding out if weaknesses in the impenetrable city walls.

Just as he was looking at the wall and wondering if there was a weak point in the wall, through which his men and women could get through, a man stood in front of him with a sword in his hand. Startled, Joshua wondered who he was and where he appeared from. Being of a blunt nature, he asked him, ” Are you for us or against us ?”.

The man replied, ” Neither. I have come with a message from the Lord.”.

Joshua fell down and knelt before the man. The man told Joshua that all of Jericho had been delivered to the Israelites, even before they had had to attack its impenetrable walls. All he had to do was to gather all his army and march around the city of Jericho once every day for six days. It was like he was being asked to take his army for a warm up before the real war. On the seventh day, he had to march seven times around the city with all the priests blowing their trumpets, loud and clear. It had to be a battle cry. This would be accompanied by a loud shout from all the army. The sound barriers of the wall would be penetrated and the walls would fall down.

There would be no need for a fight of any sort. Just calm, cool walking.

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Isn’t our life meant to be lived like that ? Calm and cool and reassured that all is going to go well. Like Joshua we need to believe even before something happens, that something good will happen. Walls that seem impenetrable, bills that seem un- payable and  dreams that seem un- achievable will just vanish. All we need is to have faith in our selves and in our creator.

Mercy- #JusJoJan- January 15- Pass it forward.

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” Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain Mercy“.

One of the Beatitudes- part of the Sermon on the Mount. One that is very difficult to follow. I mean the first part is- being merciful. The second part is easy- obtaining or receiving Mercy, which is what all of us would love to have, all the time. Life would be so much easier than usual, if we could just continue getting one mercy after another. I think of Mercy as a gift. Maybe I am wrong. Something like Santa Claus and what he supposedly does for people. There is really no need for anyone to be merciful and give gifts to another person but some generous and large-hearted people do and that is mercy.

I am going on a trip to Singapore, the last few days of January and the first few days of February. I have no leave left. The year has just started and I have no accumulated leave. It has to accrue over the next year for me to have some residual days to take off on un-official trips such as these. I applied for leave to Cyn, my supervisor. I needed 4 working days’ off. As I worked over the Christmas break, I could claim one day of compensatory leave off but 3 days’ would need to come from the loss of pay days’, meaning I would lose pay for 3 days and that is not good. What’s done has to be done.

I applied for leave for 3 days. Cyn looked through the request and said, ” How many days did you work over the Christmas break ?” I said, ” About 8 hours” ( 8 hours counts as one working day in our system). She said, ” Are you sure its not two days’ “?

I said, ” No”.  Cyn said, ” I hate for you to take ” leave without pay”. I said, ” Its ok, whats to be done, has to be done.”Cyn said, ” Do you have sick days left?”I said, ” Yes, two days'”. ” And you will get one vacation day off on February 1 “, she said. I said,” Yes”.

Quickly coming to a decision, she said, ” Do one thing. Don’t apply for leave now in advance. Apply after you have come back from your travel, by which time it will be February and you will have enough leave to cover your absence.” Cyn continued, ” It is not breaking any rules- only emergency leaves of absence need to have advance leave requests”.

So now I am waiting for my trip to Singapore, no leave requested for and waiting for February, when I can apply for leave, I would already have taken in January and some part of February.

Cyn didn’t have to do this for me- I didn’t ask her for a favor and she doesn’t have to – at all but she did it and all without my asking. That is mercy. Giving without expecting anything in return. It makes the recipient all warm and cosy inside as though someone is watching over her and it is true. Someone is watching over me- over all of us.

Now I need to watch out for opportunities to be merciful and to pass it forward.

#SoCS, Just Jot It Jan 14 – Pomegranate fever

 

P is not a very common letter that I use, I think. At least, not consciously. But I must be honest, I had to think for a bit to write this post and hence its tardiness.

A few years back, a certain person in my life went through a phase. The said person  claimed he/she was under- performing. Being a woman, I would/could not understand under performance but it seemed a perfectly normal thing in the other gender, to discuss it or be treated for it or even to have implants. ( All news to me, of course). I had not noticed anything or any difference.

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In the beginning, I was wondering if I was being made part of a joke. Could my legs be being pulled ? Then I understood for the person concerned, it was serious business. He/she read up about it and then looked up on the internet. He/she was just touching the last years of his/her half century that year. Multiple references mentioned that it was a middle age thing and part of the middle age crises, which all men and women went through. It didn’t console him/her a bit.

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Sleepless nights followed. And then the loss of appetite took over. One particular reference mentioned that after being diagnosed with this condition, one lived only for a couple of years. This condition was a precursor to heart disease as it affected the small vessels of the body, and the organ concerned had all the micro- vasculature in the world that one could wish for. So the person read that starting that year, he/she would have exactly two years to live. When quoted to me, I wondered how a very able with no other co-morbidity-ed  ( read, illness) human being could pop off in 2 years’ ;  was it ever possible ? Memories of old books and classes attended flooded my brain. Wasn’t that the basis of epidemiology – shouldn’t there be a cause and then an effect ? That was what the epidemiological triangle stood for, didn’t it ? Then how could a man just kick the bucket without any cause, and just because he/ she under performed ?

His/her weight dropped from a solid 85 kgs of fat to 72 kgs in about a month. His/her  entire diet for a day consisted of just a digestive biscuit if he/she could manage it. I wished I could under perform too- if this is what it did to people – producing severe loss of appetite and even more severe weight loss, I wanted it badly.  Readers will remember that I am obese and have been for ages. I wished the under performance bug would bite me.

A month or two later, a juicer appeared in my kitchen. This was followed by large amounts of that fruit of the Gods- the pomegranate. Apparently, research conducted in spare time ( time spared from worrying and anxiety and sleeplessness and work and more worry and so on) revealed that this fruit and its juices could boost performance to no mean level. Every morning saw the said person, cracking pomegranates in the kitchen and then painstakingly extracting every ounce of juice out of the  pomegranate. The process was repeated every evening. The pomegranate business in the country flourished solely on the amount acquired by said person every two days’.

pomegranate Needless to mention, I consumed some of the tart juice myself. I never developed a liking for it myself but to keep company, I did drink some of the nectar. A bottle of Grenadine appeared soon after. This was consumed too- sometimes without dilution.

grenadineThe whole episode went on for about 9 months and then ran a natural end as all good things do, when having tried multiple remedies along with the pomegranate juice, the person got sick of all the trouble and decided to wait things out as they would turn out.

 

Sure enough, about a month of giving up later, physical performance improved on its own and things came back to normal. Pomegranates graced our fridge, table and kitchen a few times ever since but not with the ferocity with which they invaded us and ours that eventful year.

Thank you, pomegranate !

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#JusJoJan- Jan 13/17- Hospital- a walk to remember

I thought and thought- what can I write about hospitals. I am a doctor but not practicing now- so what relevance does hospitals have for me other than some nostalgia at not seeing patients any more ? My husband carries a smell of hospital with him when he comes back from work and he carries some of his hospital work with him when he returns. But other than that hospitals are a thing of the past for me.

Then it struck me- why not write about a beautiful book I was reading overnight- Thursday- it was called a Walk to Remember. Some of you might remember the movie. I have never seen the movie or read the book before yesterday. My daughter took one look at the book and said- this is a famous movie book and I asked her- do you know it ? She said, ” yes, everyone is talking about it. Everyone dies in the end”. Really ? I cannot read book about dying these days- how am I going to deal with it ?

But its intriguing, gripping plot kept me reading till the end. And there is mention of hospital and illness in the book.

Jamie the heroine or unlikely heroine is unattractive and just opposite of what a teenage high school girl of the time would be. She was not into rock and roll or short dresses or make up. She was nerdish by modern parlance. The hero, her classmate, all of 17 belonged to one of the social elite families of Beaufort, North Carolina. The location of NC struck a chord with me, since many of the bloggers whom I follow and read reside in NC- Anne Merhling who writes at Mehrling Muse writes often about the glorious Smokies. Another blogger who writes at rabbit patch diary blogs about the NC mountains. But the location of this book was the seafront town of Beaufort, NC, which has a coast.

Jamie’s one desire was to act in her Father’s play, which he had written for Christmas and she wanted the hero of the story also to act in the play. They were not friends by any means. But she asked him anyway. He was a socially prominent boy of the times in that town and would have hated spending time with Jamie, even under normal circumstances. Jamie was the daughter of the Baptist priest in town. She walked around with a Bible at all times- she quoted from it often and often talked about praying for one. She was a total, vociferous believer and a true practicing Christian. Visiting a nearby orphanage and spending time there was one of her pastimes.

After acting with Jamie in the play, the hero of the story Carter, comes to know why acting in the play was so dear to her heart. She was fighting a losing battle with an illness, one that had no cure at that time. She had spent time traveling to hospitals and the prognosis was always the same. She wanted to spend the rest of her time on earth doing good for people.

I can’t begin to tell you how this story affected me. When I got the book from our library, Thursday evening, from a free pick all you want book exhibition outside our library, I didn’t know what I was letting myself in for. A book by Nicholas Sparks( never heard of him either), but no harm in trying it out- was my first thought.

But though hospitals figured largely in the second part of the book, the focus of the book was not Jamie’s illness or her visits to hospital. It was about the spiritual healing of the hero, who needed to have direction in life and Jamie picked on him to treat him in her own sweet way, so he could see his life’s direction and pursue it instead of wasting his time on earth. Jamie bequeathed her legacy on him and she lived through him, long after she was gone physically from the world.

It has been a long time since a fiction book has touched my core so much. I would recommend it to anyone who needs some positivity n their lives.