Children, COVID-19, School

COVID-19 Diaries: Virtual School

It is late Monday morning. It is also a long weekend. I should be cooking, instead I am seated at the breakfast table, two iPads, two dated planners next to me, my Macbook open to a spreadsheet, my iPhone showing me the schedule for the child whose planner I am attempting to fill. I have […]

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Daughters, Milestones, Musings, School

Milestone: Fifth Grade Graduation

For the last day of the school year, today did not seem any different from the three months preceding this. When the school decided to close on March 13th, there were no goodbyes, no last day pictures, no walkouts to cheering children, no teary-eyed parents waiting in the wings to ferry their children to douse […]

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Back to school, Laddu, Milestones, School

Fleeting Childhood

She is staring out the window, a stuffed bear under her elbow, a piece of paper with the drawing of a little girl in her hand. In a week she will set foot into a new era. One in which her life will be ruled by teachers, friends and timers. In the eight months she […]

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Musings, School, Teacher

Musings: End Of School Year

The water swirls around my feet, pulsing from the jets in the tub. The chair I am on pounds in synchrony, massaging my back as I let out a sigh of contentment. The woman scrubbing my feet, sloughing off dead cells, works in silence. My phone dings, an aberration in the otherwise zen space I […]

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Laddu, Milestones, Musings, School

A Big Girl

I circle the school parking lot a couple of times before resigning and finding a spot in the grass farthest from the entrance. I grab the folder containing documents that I need, close the door and help Laddu from the car. She is bundled up, her hood covering most of her face. Her tiny hands […]

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Daughters, Musings, School

Why Homework?

The lights are on at the breakfast table and the dining table. I walk, swinging my arms, hoping my iWatch will count the strides toward exercise minutes. Laddu ambles behind me clicking her flashlight on and off to illuminate what she considers dark corners of the house. Ammu is bent over her homework, way past […]

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Education, Musings, School

It Will Be Okay

I feel the familiar band of stress tighten around my head. My ears are taut. I feel like a loaded spring, ready to jump in and rescue Ammu as she sits doing Math with her dad. They are working on two-digit multiplication. “What is 7 times 8?” asks Saathi his voice even, a controlled impatience […]

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Back to school, Musings, School, School Day Mornings

New Beginnings

I woke to the sounds of Laddu crying at 4:30 AM. Bringing her back to bed with me, we snuggled and she slept, an arm around my neck, her hair tickling my nose. Me? I was wide awake. For the past three months, mornings have been relaxed, days have been organic, eating, sleeping and playing […]

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Musings, Reunion, School

Of Reunions and Confidence

A couple of days have gone past since we have come home. A few suitcases still lie at the corner of my bedroom awaiting attention. The toys we picked up from vendors along the pavements in Pondy Bazaar are scattered in the living room. The breakfast table is claimed by wrapped packages. One blue box […]

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Musings, School

The End is Nigh

The alarm sounds insistently on my phone indicating it is time for the kids to start walking to their bus stop. A combination of shouting and herding them out the door does the trick. “Hug and kiss?” Pattu lingers by the door. I rush to gather her and Ammu joins in. As I wrap my […]

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Kids, Musings, School

Little Teachers

“What is the book about?” “How many characters are there?” “What are their names?” “Where is the book set?” “What is the story about?” “Is it a book for big people?” The questions came thick and fast at the end of a 40 minute presentation to first graders at the school my children go to. […]

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New beginnings, School, SFU, The Writer's Studio, TWSSFU

Forays into writing

I remember the first piece I wrote that resonated with readers way back in 2000 about ‘ponnu parkal’ aka arranged marriages. For every person who agreed with me, I had an equal number disagree. I remember reading through the comments and thinking ‘they do not get it’. That lit something in me. I went on […]

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Daughters, Life, Musings, School

Eyes only for you

The bus leaves, wisps of steam in its wake. I stand by the curb, baby on my hip, one arm raised in a wave. I follow the bus as it completes a circle around the center grassy area before it passes me again on its way out. Your pony tails are silhouetted against the window. […]

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Children, Daughters, Family, Life, Milestones, Personal, School

New beginnings

I woke to the shrill sound of the alarm going off at 5:00 AM. Saathi groaned and suggested snoozing another half hour. I figured it would not hurt and reset the alarm to 5:30 to catch a few more winks of sleep. The next time it beeped, I was up with razor-sharp focus. The next […]

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