I’ve been trying to clear out some of my stuff from the house of late, especially books. They’ve all been kept packed in boxes and dumped out of sight in various corners of the house since we last got a whitewash, which was almost a year ago. Yes, I’ve been unkind and cruel. I’ve even acquired a kindle in the past year, so yeah, you’re talking to the Book Fiend here.
As I sift through the piles, I find many gems, torn pages from notebooks, crayon drawings, (dips)diaries, some absurd books, some strays from my parents’ collections, many old favourites, many a lost friend…relics of the childhood of a quiet and bookish (and a tad lonely) child. And so, I’ve felt temptation. Temptation to hang on to these relics, temptation to open a Champak in the middle of room literally overflowing with books and read till I forget, temptation to be selfish and clingy and obstinate as the 8 year old who owned and loved these books.
But I mustn’t. I just mustn’t keep succumbing to the temptation. Last October, I discovered my maid’s daughter playing with what used to be my favouritest, loyalestest, bestest doll till the age of 11. And I was surprised to find the feelings of the indignation, jealousy and outrage coursing through me. I’m ashamed to admit, I snatched Dolly (that’s what I called her) from Shalu (coincidentally sharing name with another of my dolls)’s hands. I confronted the mother about how Dolly escaped the box of ‘to keep… for sentimental reasons’ toys. Apparently, somehow, the box of ‘to keep’ and ‘to give away’ got mixed up. The next day, of course, I bought Shalu a brand new toy and relinquished, with a heavy heart, my emotional grip over that box of ‘to keep’ toys and gave up any thought of ever tracing back any of them.
Next I proceeded to carefully rewatch the third Toy Story about three times in a row and cried a few buckets of tears.
I learnt my lesson, though. And I learnt it so well that I want to extend it to my collection books as well, which have, in comparison to the toys, suffered better treatment under my hand; sorted, dusted and revisited regularly.
I have piles of children’s books, comics and magazines. I have abridged novels and collections. I have proper grown up stuff. Out of these, some I plan to still hang on to—naturally, most of the grown up stuff. Some of the childhood ones…I find I’m more attached to the books (and toys, but *sniff*) of my youngest years- say, till the age of 7, and not so much to the artefacts of late childhood, maybe because the books (and toys *double sniff*) from that age are more reliable objects of memory; actual memory from that age being faded, or jerky, or absent… these I will keep (and protect with lock, key, roundhouse kicks and murderous stares). Some of them are just so dear. Two of my favourites are depicted in the photograph above. Both of them are unique and, to this day, my benchmark for children’s books. The Three Ducklings, a hand-me-down from a cousin, was a ‘touch-and-feel’ book. Little Mary’s hair is real (doll’s) hair! Isn’t that amazing? To the four-year-old Nidhi, it was very advanced technology.
Another fascinating technology featured on the cover of the Little Red Riding Hood album, a hologram! Would you believe my endless awe and enjoyment that arose from that one ‘3-D photo’? Nope, no way is Nidhi going to give The Three Ducklings or Little Red Riding Hood. She has however purchased several touch-and-feel books for her toddler nephew. A bit early for him, but years later, he’ll be thanking me, I’m sure.
So here’s what I want: the names of your favourite libraries or charities where you donate your old books with the assurance that it will reach children who need them. And any other ideas or stories about what to do with old books. Also, any tips to prevent (or rather, cure…) mottling.
I also want to give away some of the grown up stuff to friends and family, so yes, visit, visit!!
Now that I have nothing to do…I don’t feel like doing anything!! Seriously all I’ve accomplished in the last 24 hours is a LOT of facebook, staring at the ceiling, sleeping. That’s seriously all.
*stares stupidly at 50 item long post-exam to-do list*
Right of Franchise on Flickr.
On a totally random note, the policemen at the Polling Booth congratulated me when I finally found my name in the lists outside. Who said the Delhi Police sucked? I totally love them! :P
I’ve been trying to figure out not just WHO to vote for but also HOW. And as anybody who has any experience with government websites in India, this is a bit like waging a war.
Well, that’s what you’d think.
I’ve been very pleased to find that the government websites are not just working really well, they’re a mine of information. Here’s a set of links for fellow Delhiites:
1. ECI’s Guide for Voters is a good resource to begin with.
2. Look for your name in the Electoral List on Delhi CEO’s website (serious breach of privacy here, btw).
4. You can now search for polling booths in your constituency using this map.
5. Next, you might be interested in current MLA’s. Have a look here.
6. I urge you to go through the affidavits (wealth, education, political affiliation, contact details) filed by the candidates in your constituency here. I was quite disappointed to find not a single lady in mine. But the wealth of information here is remarkable and quite illuminating. Not many judgments or inferences can/should be drawn from it, but, like I said, illuminating.
7. Now for the all important question—which symbol do I hit? Match up here. An extremely handy list, there is everything in here from “bungalow” to “hat” and “camera” and even, yes even I got my hopes up, “batsman”.
8. Finally, I can assume the results will be uploaded on this page on 8th December.
I hope this helps somebody, even if it’s just one person. I’d be really grateful if people pointed out errors. I’m still looking for a few links, like maybe a “compare manifesto’s” or something. Please do help!
*For those of you living under a rock, Election Day is on 4th December 2013. Be there.
Also, why the NOTA option is useless: “Therefore, even if the number of electors opting for NOTA option is more than the number of votes polled by any of the candidates, the candidate who secures the largest number of votes has to be declared elected.” (Source: ECI)
Hope you had a very Harry Diwali!
Continuing with the series of the pictures taken on my special day. This is the “Green Tunnel*” on way to Pahalgam. It’s unbelievably pretty and my mother did not let me step on the highway to take a better photo so yeah.
So the funny thing is…see, every time I edit a picture on Lightroom (always), I save the edits as a preset so I can apply it not just to the rest of the pictures in the set, but also to any photographs in the future. It’s always surprising how the atmosphere of one place can look good on another. For example, “Earl of Mayo**” and “Flowers of Gun Hill" are two my favourite presets and work magic on any otherwise dull and uninspiring photos. Guess which one worked for Green Tunnel? "The Columns of CP".
(Also, normally I like a little grain to add some flavour to photographs, but it’s just not working for me here. Isn’t it?)
*Here have a fairly appropriate link.
**Earl of Mayo: coming soon.