Life is but a stage

Evita was a great success in my college. It was 1981 and the actors achieved cult status among the students. This was much before my time but we heard about it- not once but many times. Eva Peron, former first lady of Argentina was the central character in the original score. Additional accolades came the actors’ way when despite their grueling medical curricula, they scored high in all university exams. Stories of how they balanced tough dialogues, a lot of medical cramming and a lot of ragging in hostels and emerged with flying colors.

Fast forward a few years until, ” One Flew over the cuckoo’s nest” was chosen the college play.  This was during my time. I watched as a year 1 student, wondering what it was all about. There was no Wikipedia then for a quick reference. Seemed like a lot of excitement in a psychiatric ward and some innuendos to some of us. One of my classmates played one of the nurses in the psychiatric ward. I remember her getting dressed for her part- a nurse’s uniform and she was wondering if she needed to wear a slip under her dress. I still remember her choosing not to do so. Its odd what things remain in a person’s brain after 30 years’.

In the 1980s, college plays and their actors were celebrities of our times. It was thought that along with a medical career, many of them would go on to be great actors on the national scene or even Broadway.  Plays chosen for enactment by students seemed to have a lot of emotional overplays, mind games, planning, plotting, cunning and so on. Maybe medical students of my time enjoyed those elements for their doses of entertainment.

Life goes on. How do we measure success in life ? Is it wealth ? Is it relationships ? Is it successful marriages ? Is it great careers ? Or is it being great human beings ? In medicine, often success is measured by publications, fame, academic and research endeavors, recently money, travel, visibility, networking and a great many things. Being a team player matters too as medicine often involves team work. I have wondered why movies glorify good looks with good behavior and greatly desirable partners in terms of relationships. I have wondered also if being great actors on stage predicted great successes in the after life. I am not sure how success in life should be measured. I am just an observer. I study human beings. Using this post to think out loud. I thought this post would serve as my contribution to the ” Morning pages“.

Now may be best

A friend of mine from another university has been on the line a couple of times trying to contact me. I missed her calls a couple of times and didn’t call her back, when I could, always finding excuses to not call. She is one who has been following my journey about leaving this university to pursue my education. And now I am embarrassed to face her. When my visa was rejected, I told her but have been sort of restricting my communications with her to emails.

My mother, who is recovering from two cancer surgeries had her yearly check up last week. There is a small fatty lump in her abdomen still, which doesn’t seem malignant but one doesn’t know if it is residual tumour from the original mass or a new growth. It has been a year or maybe two years since she went to church. What with the hair falling off and the loss of weight and the sudden aging all her illness took their toll and she couldn’t attend church in a while. Today was a landmark day and she went to church and even had communion. For her it was a true red letter day.

I have a chance to go to church either every week- often I don’t take it and blame the weather or something else to keep away. For people who can’t go, the ability to go and stand through a service is such a blessing. I have heard the thrill in my mother’s voice as she narrated her experience being in church after a long time. One learns the value of small pleasures when one is denied that pleasure for a time.

I talked to my friend a few minutes back. I thought I should not put it away any more for now is best. There is no time like now.

Kat update : A friend’s problem

A colleague of mine was leaving. At the send-off lunch, everyone assembled to wish her luck. This is the colleague who owns Pepper and Elsie and Max( dogs).

Pepper’s second birthday last week 

At lunch she received a call from her house help. Oh my God ! Trixie is having babies. A video was recorded and as all watched, Trixie( the house help’s dog, who comes along with her to work and who is sibling to Elsie and Max) was on the sofa going in circles and a black bundle popped out ! There was already one on the sofa, squirming and screeching. Pepper and Elsie and Max watched their sibling.

A puppy is born 

Everyone had a fit, literally. No one knew Trixie was pregnant. Dogs have a gestation of about 68 days they found out. So that would make the day around the beginning of July. Max was fixed about the first week of July. Perhaps he got to her before that.

Both puppies 

Now no one knows what to do with the puppies. Thankfully Pepper and Elsie were fixed at six months of age. Max was left till he was a year old.

Threading a needle

For two days in a row, I have been trying to get a thread through the eye of the sewing machine needle but have failed miserably.

I have tried the traditional method, front to back, pushing the thread through the needle- doesn’t work. Seems like eyesight and hand eye coordination don’t work together at this age for me.

I researched on youtube to find out answers. I tried the Twitter hack, which seems to work on friction and which was done with ease by the demonstrator but not so much ease by me.

And then there was the fool proof Chinese way. It is so easy and interesting when watching on youtube but not so easy in real life. For me, failed attempts.

And there were the needle threader methods. I tried all of them. To be fair, the metal flimsy hand held needle threader worked once for me but the machine didn’t play fair and the threads I had threaded so lovingly, painstakingly broke. Another attempt failed.

I have now ordered all the needle threaders I found on Amazon and ebay, with the hope that one of them will work for me. Many of them will take a month to find me, so I need to wait. Why is it that when I am in a mood to do something, things don’t work out as well.

As to my studies, though I deferred my course, I had given up hope of pursuing it. Yesterday I was reminded of getting paper work started again, so the visa process could start right in earnest this time, rather than waiting for the last moment as before.