The stillness in the cloudy weather is indicating that it will start raining in a few moments.
Standing in my balcony, I am enjoying the dark clouds when my thoughts are interrupted
by a phone call.
Hello Auntyʼ said Neha, ʻIts a beautiful weather, I am calling everyone to come to my
apartment for a cup of tea and bhajias, hope you are not busy, please join us
This is ausual practice in my block of flats and its always a delight to sit together.
In a few minutes I find myself in Nehaʼs apartment among my feisty gang of ladies. Amidst
the chirping and repartee, I cant help but notice jugs of water with some leaves in them on
the dining table and in the balcony.
ʻIs that some kind of special water, neha?ʼ, I ask.’
Yes Aunty, I usually keep small jugs of water with tulsi leaves in every room. It helps to
remind myself and the rest of the family to drink water, and tulsi adds its medicinal
properties. I have been doing it for many years now and I must say it really helps in
keeping the seasonal infections away.
That is something wonderful that I have learnt today. Our usual day has umpteen number
of tasks that need to be accompalished and putting a few practices in place can help make
our lives better and more productive
ʼ, I cant help but say. And thus starts a tete-a-tete…
Manisha, I dont think I have ever mentioned this, but I have learnt something from youʼ
said Dipti. And all of us look at Dipti.
ʻAfter watching Manisha do it, I have started keeping
a duster in each cupboard in the kitchen. Every time I take out a jar or container from the
cupboard, I take the duster and wipe it before keeping it back. And that way, my jars and
containers do not accumulate dust. A small habit of keeping a wiping cloth near the jars
has reduced the effort to a minimum..
Hmmm, that reminds me of a habit that I inculcated from Nandiniʼ, exclaimed Bela
Oh is it!ʼ said Nandini looking very intrigued as to what could Bela be referring to. Bela
ʻ Nandini has a habit of clearing her handbagʼs clutter on a daily basis. She
does it when she watches TV, isnt it Nandini?’
Oh yes I do that on a daily basis. We all collect so much stuff in our handbags everyday
like receipts, certain papers, and with small kids, I keep putting everything in my bag that
they hand to me, so my bag was always a rucksack rather than a handbag. I therefore
associated watching series on TV with cleaning of my handbag, and now my handbag gets
a clean up every evening at 8:30 pm sharp which is the time my favourite show starts and
after the show my bag is fresh for the next day
ʼ, said Nandini’
It may not sound to be such an important habit, but being a mom of two small kids, I have
so much on my platter that things like an overstuffed bag is a last priority. And now that I
have associated this task with my activity of watching TV which by the way is only for half
an hour a day, my bag is more organised and all the things from the bag reach their place
on a daily basis. Its all about making associations between things so that we dont forget
things.ʼ Bela said.ʻ
I must also acknowledge that my kids have developed a wonderful habit from Diptiʼs kidsʼ,
said Nandini.ʻ Diptiʼs both boys have a habit of rinsing their mouth whenever they eat
chocolate or sweets. So when ever they were playing with my kids, they would keep
asking for water, and so would my kids. And now my kids dont like chocolate or sweets
sticking to their teeth, and thus keep rinsing their mouth after they eat any such things.
This way I dont have to worry about their teeth getting affected
ʼ, Nandini informed everyone.ʻ
And do you know what we all have learnt from Aunty Rao?ʼ asked Bela. I looked at her
inquisitively.ʻWe have learnt that there is no age for learning and that learning can never
stop. It is inspiring to see that you imbibe new things easily and although you are more
experienced than all of us, yet you make us feel that you too are learning from usʼ.
I was touched on hearing this.
ʻYou are right Bela, I love to learn new things because this
keeps me evolving into a better human being. If I dont do this, I will feel stagnant and you
must remember that its the flow that keeps everything fresh and green! I want to add life to
my years and not the other way roundʼ I said.“Isn
ʼt this amazing that I have actually become aware of such easy and helpful habits in
about half an hour” said Neha excitedly.ʻ
Every individual is a little world in himself. No matter how different one is from another,
there are still so many things that one can imbibe from the other. Its all a matter of how
open your eyes, ears and most importantly the heart is to accept any new things in life.
And that is the key to keep yourself young and happening
ʼ I reiterated with a smile.ʻ
Hey, hey at this point I feel its a good habit to be open to such impromptu tea parties, isnt
it?!?!ʼ said Dipti giggling.
The clouds had finally burst open and it was pouring heavily outside. The ambience inside
Nehaʼs apartment was that of warmth and laughter and everyone was enjoying their hot
cup of tea with equally hot bhajias. I could not help but feel that open hearts and minds
can make life so much easier and wonderful. Habits are what define oneʼs life style and to
pick a good one and drop a bad one, although not as easy as it sounds, can become easy
only if our minds and hearts are open to change and change usually takes us forward!