Friday, 23 January 2015

How I Proposed to my Girl

Valentines day! This day though not among our list of festivals is slowly gaining a lot of popularity. Mostly sweethearts exchange gifts on Valentines Day. The Supermarkets are full with innovative gift items right from jewellery, teddy bears to chocolates. 

I fell in love with a girl in engineering college. It was a Eric Segal's Love Story. We painted the town red in my bike. We spent our time in parks, malls and restaurants.

All our friends envied our relationship. She was so beautiful with a peaches and white complexion and straight long hair. She almost looked  like a model. I was a south Indian and she was a Punjabi. Cupid's love struck my heart and I did not know whether she had the same feelings for me. We spent a lot of time together. We studied together for our exams and cooked together in her apartment. I could feel the electricity between us. A brush of her arm and the touch of her shoulders would send goose pimples through me. I was so love sick. Valentine's day was fast approaching. I wanted to propose to my beloved. I bit my nails, I ruffled my curly hair. I wanted my proposal to be very special. Being a writer do I read to her a love note or a poem. No! I racked my brains; Something more special! I had always loved old things. Old Victorian love stories where the man proposes to his love by kneeling down. Yes! A mix of the old and the new. On February 14th I took my lady to a very special restaurant. There was a dance after the dinner and the couples danced to the music. We waltzed to the strains of the music. I enjoyed having my love in my arms and smelling the fragrance of her hair. And hey presto! my plan of action. I stopped waltzing and much to the surprise of the other dancers kneeled in front of my beloved and took her hand and kissed it. The few dancers that were in the room stopped dancing. I had already arranged for confetti to rain on us through the hotel staff. I almost looked like somebody from the Victorian times kneeling in front of my beloved and taking her hand. Well that was the novelty of the proposal. Then I asked her in a husky voice whether she would marry me. My love looked happy, confused and as love struck as me and whispered yes in a husky voice. More confetti rained on us. I later thanked the hotel staff for following my instructions so well. I brandished the platinum ring that I had brought for my beloved and put it in her finger. She looked at me with love and unshed tears overwhelmed by her emotions. Now  that we have been married for ten years we still think of the special way I proposed.

Note: This blog was written for indiblogger contest "Cupid Games 2015" sponsored by Closeup.

Monday, 19 January 2015

Is laundry only a woman's job

Ours has been a patriarchal society so far. And women have always sheltered the hearth cooking cleaning and doing most of the household chores. Our society has so far defined women as the submissive sex. The man mostly was the bread winner and so the household chores fell on the women folk. Even in our mythology Draupadi ate last from the divine bowl so that her husbands ate well and fully before her. 

Only in the last ten years, with the effect of globalization and women entering the workforce  we see men wanting to share household chores. The younger generation seems to share the household chores. So far our society has been carrying on with the fact that women take care of the chores. When this is the norm in urban households you can definitely say that laundry is a women's job in rural areas. Blame it on the mothers of yesteryear. They would not allow their son to lift a spoon, let alone do the laundry. Her day starts at five and she sleeps only at ten. Women have to  be super multi-taskers. The twenty first century has see the emergence of the working women in India. Women are no longer confined to the home and we see very successful women from doctors  to engineers to scientists. Women  have dominated  male dominated fields like space research. And for these successful women there is not much help from their husbands and they have to multitask constantly.  Indian women is well educated but still is a door mat. She still doesn't know how to say " Honey  I am tired you do the Laundry tonight."  With dual incomes and when the wife earns their is more affluence in the family. With the women pitching in life is more comfortable for the entire family. Working women should raise their voice and make sure that the men share the household work. If men and children  are trained in household work the family will function more efficiently . The house will be clean, things will be in place. So far by and far laundry seems to be a women's job in India. Whether it is education or career women seem to be conquerors and super achiever's. Women  are also conquering male dominated fields. Isn't it time men also competed and learn womanly tasks so that there is gender equality both at home and at the workplace. A daughter a mother a wife these are different transitions a woman undergoes through and for making this journey through life easier it is easier if the chores are shared. Also we now seem to be doing a lot of our household work ourselves as servants are getting more and more scarce so soon men definitely have to start sharing in the chores.

Note: I am writing for #IsLaundryOnlyAWomansJob activity at in association with Ariel.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Laundry - Whose Job is it?

This is a very interesting topic but I opinion is more neutral. 

I have seen my Grandma do the laundry .... hitting the cotton clothes on a large stone at the back of the house. Probably detergents were not so sophisticated then and brute force took the dirt out.

I have seen my Mother do the laundry .... using a detergent soap and a brush in the bathroom. The same job was completed quicker and less strenuous. 

As I was growing up, my father bought a semi-automatic washing machine for my mother. She was very happy the machine made her job much easier. My brother and I wanted to operate the new machine but we were strictly forbidden by my parents. They were scared we will spoil the machine.

Then I got married and my husband already had a fully automatic washing machine. I took my first lessons about operating the machine from him. Wow! this is easier than I ever imagined laundry could be. Drop the clothes, add detergent, turn it on and it turns itself off when it is done. Then we have the maid who takes care of drying the washed clothes and fold it. The machine was in a different floor and hence I had to climb a floor but that was good exercise to keep me fit. I banned my husband from operating the machine as I took ownership of the same.  

In my family, we never bothered about statistics. We, as a family have some needs and wants as well as some chores to be done and we need to do them for our own convenience. My husband goes out for a job six days a week to bring in the money we need to live on, pay the bills. I work at home caring for the family and the laundry. On Sundays we help each other and bond as a family. 

These are some of the telling household statistics that emerged in Ariel’s survey conducted by AC Nielsen.

I am very interested in statistics and I realized my family belongs to #6 (77% of Indian men depend on women for doing the laundry). But we consciously decided to keep it this way. 

As we chugged along, the children were growing up and once I fell sick. Doctors told me not to climb stairs for few months. I was speaking to my husband in the night and was discussing about shifting the washing machine to the Balcony or bathroom in the lower floor so that I can take care of laundry without climbing up. He told me we will discuss later as I needed to sleep. Next morning when I woke up, I could hear the machine running. I realized my husband has already taken care of the chore so that I don't have to climb up. This became the routine for the next 4 months till I was fit again.

No job is demeaning and so is laundry. It is perfectly alright for women (or for that matter men) to do laundry. As long as the family helps each other when required and women taking care of the family has reasonable access to the overall family income, household work (laundry inclusive) is just like work from home. 

Note: I am writing for #IsLaundryOnlyAWomansJob activity at in association with Ariel