Giving !

It is morning. Its still raining. The flowers on offer are too tempting to resist. Bright white ones. With those dots of yellow. All kept in a red bucket. Fresh from a pond close by. Theres not much aroma. But they are a treat for the eyes.


Theres a knock on the door. And a young innocent school going kid stands on the other side. She smiles. And proceeds to state that she is from the 10th floor of the same apartment.

“Its the Joy of Giving Week uncle”. So she speaks. In a well rehearsed presentation. The request is simple. She is collecting old newspapers from each house in the apartment. She wants to sell it and ‘GIVE’ the proceeds to slum children living close by.

She sure should have given slum children something. For all the newspapers in the apartment would have added to decent sum.

More importantly, she sure gives hope. That all is not lost. That people still do think about the man living down the street. And are willing to go knock and open many doors. The mind is young ! Nothing can be more encouraging.

The Joy of Giving week is here ! Actually, its slipped into its third day ! It sure does merit an extra thought ! And some action too.

In the modern day, fast paced world, to stop and look is at a premium. Giving is still further away! Perhaps its time, to make a start. To stop, look and give ! Perhaps its time to commence by giving !

Whatever. Clothes. Eyes. Appliances. Books. Sweets. Whatever ! Perhaps its important to add there : Time, hope and such else too. And maybe they are the ones on real short supply !

So people, here is the message. To all those that give, give more ! And for all those that have been thinking about it : try giving !

The Joy of Giving week is here. And we are three days into it ! Make a start this week. And carry it all along ! Perhaps you can let the world know by sharing it too. You never who it will propel to action !


Ah those flowers. They were beautiful weren’t they.

The smile and joy that emerge after sometime, evident from their wide grins and shy nods is but a logical visible consequence.

A consequence of something as simple as a small conversation over a pack of cookies that were in the car..! It has always caused unceasing wonder, that such smiles indeed reside in otherwise sad faces.

The beauty in those smiles.. well.. they beat the beauty of the flowers. All the time !

Merry Christmas !

Clicked on MG Road. Bangalore. Dec ’06

The magi, as you know, were wise men–wonderfully wise men–who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication”.

Those were lines from a tale that i read for an English lesson in class eight. I think. In the melee of exams and studies, this story tugged my heart and left a mark. But my appreciation, back then was largely academic. (I think). Today, its meaning, importance and relevance assume special significance ! (Ok. Ok. Yes. I am slow… !)

In the ‘getting’ melee that all of us are in, i think ‘giving’ requires some attention.

Yes ! Its time to give. To heal the world. To spread some cheer. To help put some honest food on the table and some true cheer to the heart. Its time !

As the world seems to hurtle towards a far flung place, its time we realise that it is in us to perhaps help change course, from ‘Getting’ to ‘Giving’ ! Both, for the world and for us. Beginning with us. Yes, Us. You and Me. To show that the course that we chart is worthwhile and possible.

An honest, happy, fair and a ‘giving’ course !

The wise old Magi began the art of Christmas presents. Its time for us to look beyond the materials and malls, and look at giving. A giving that is beyond all that we have ever given in the past.

Perhaps just to see a small little smile in a remote corner that doesn’t matter to the world any longer. Or not even that. Perhaps because ‘giving’, is what will sustain us all !!!

Its Christmas time people. Its time to give. Its time to become the new Magi.

Clicked on Airport Road. Bangalore. Dec ’06

I clicked this a couple of years back. I have been brought up with the thought, that God lives everywhere. Especially so, in every act of human kindness. Jesus can reside between the Airport and Indiranagar. And i think i am well qualified to become the Magi. So are you.

Wishing you a very happy Christmas. We may live in distant lands and difficult times, but we are united in our hope for a better tomorrow and possibilities that lie within mankind ! The possibility to reach out and give !

So, here is a wish from Mumbai : May the celebrations bring great cheer and lasting happiness. To each of your families, a heartfelt, humble and true wish for a great Christmas and a fantastic time of peace, health, hope and great cheer.