Sunday, November 30, 2014

A year older. And, hopefully, wiser.

Greetings from Shalu.

First, and foremost - thank you, from the very bottom of my heart, to everyone, for the birthday wishes. The one which came, some days after the mid of November 2014. Thank you for the blessings, the love, and the care.

Birthdays are very personal, to me. No. Not because of the getting old issue. 
But, because, I truly believe, it is a day you celebrate with loved ones. The family and friends that you genuinely hold close to heart. And, I did, exactly that. 

God and Appa. Thank you for continuing to watch over me. And for blessing me, from up above. 

Amma, my Goddess. The one who makes me realise that heaven will always be a place on earth, as long as I have her, with me. Thank you for the midnight, surprise party. 

Akka. My best friend. My second mom. We share a 13 year gap. But, we are allies. Compatriots. Shopping buddies. Gossip gang. Partners in craziness. 
And, she is my favourite Whatsapp contact. Yes, such a favourite, that we share secret messages, even when in the same room. Thank you for the side dishes for party. Thank you for ensuring a good attendance. 

My brother, Segar. Who remembered. For once. Hahaha.....
Guys rarely keep track of dates and all. So, when he actually called to wish, I found it a little weird and funny. Brothers. They can drive you crazy. He does, too. But, he cares just as much. And, I continue to count on him, anytime of the day. 

Mogan. For one of the earliest wishes. For making me smile from ear to ear. For continuing to be a part of my life. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. 

Inpan and Devaki. My besties in London. For the phone call across the miles. For the messages. For just being there, in my life. You've put our friendship on a pedestal. You're family, guys. And, I love you both as well as the two little ones, so very, very much.

Sivaram. My blog reader. Years have transformed us into Facebook and email friends. Thank you, too, for that surprise phone call, from India. I was truly taken by surprise because you remembered. And not to mention, that sweeter than sweet poem via mail. May God bless you in your new journey of life. And, yes, thanks. Very much appreciated. 

To my besties, who compromise of 5 crazy girls, from my uni days - Thanks. You guys rock. 

To everyone else who is aware of my EXACT birth date, and dropped by to wish, thank you, too.

Yes, I am blessed. Thanks.

Take a piece of the cake. Virtually. That's all that is possible for now.

Signing off,
~Shalu~


Saturday, September 20, 2014

Thunbam Nergayil Yazh Eduthu - Transcendent Tamil & Its Translation.

For and with sincere thanks :-
Thiru Kathiravan Krishnamurthi of Westford, Massachusetts. 

Every single word, in the post, belongs to him. Solely. 
His patience in intricately explaining this beautiful Tamil song to ordinaries like me, requires a standing ovation.
I am giving him one, albeit virtually.

To have someone of such high status and intelligence with depth in Tamil language, do the translation, for the mere fact of running into my blog by chance, is indeed, a dream come true.

I am so thankful to him. For his genuine effort. 
I have been vocal about the level of gratitude I owe him, and have written a couple of mails to him, since.

Without his translation, this post would not have materialised.

Nothing has been changed about the translation. 
Nothing. 
Nil.
His explanation is just precise. 
Written from the heart.
Thus, I don't want to change a thing. 
I read his translation in awe.
Tamil is just so immensely beautiful.
I am so very proud today.
Because I read, write and speak this amazing language. 
I would have never been able to justify the exquisiteness of this language, had I not learned it.
Appa, thank you. 
You instilled the love.

Thiru Kathiravan Krishnamurthi. Heartfelt thanks. 
Words would not be sufficient to thank you. 
Dinner. On us. When you and your little clan (Puggy, the world's most pampered pet, too) plan that much awaited Penang, Malaysia trip. 

And, yes. 
Appa always taught me to think good and pray for another.

Thiru Kathiravan Krishnamurthi
May The Almighty God bless you and your family with happiness, prosperity and well being for always. 
My warmest regards to everyone at home. 
Vani Ma'am, Mugil & Venil. 
They already sound like family. 
Love and affection, is indeed, the world's greatest antidote.
Thanks again.

வாழ்க தமிழ்.  
 
As written by the very respected Thiru Kathiravan :-

The song was written during the days of Tamil renaissance. 
Tamil that was sung in temples, stages and in dance performance was getting a back seat to Telugu and Skt in Tamil Nadu. 
In the 1600s Tamil Trinity of Muthu Thanadavar, Marimuthu Pillai and later Arunachala Kavi pioneered Keerthanas. 
Bharathidasan wrote the lines longing for olden days when Tamil music set to dance is performed.
This song is a outpouring of his wish.

First Para :

துன்பம் நேர்கையில் யாழ் எடுத்து நீ
இன்பம் சேர்க்க மாட்டாயா? - எமக் 
கின்பம் சேர்க்க மாட்டாயா? - நல் 
அன்பிலா நெஞ்சில் தமிழில் பாடி நீ 
அல்லல் நீக்க மாட்டாயா? - கண்ணே 
அல்லல் நீக்க மாட்டாயா?

yAzh is a precursor to veeNa used in music. 
Ancient Tamil poets during Bhakthi era sang and pANars (instrumentalists) set them to music. 
The system of paNs is still in vogue among the devotional singers.

yAzh_eduththu enakku inbam sErkka maattaayA.
It is a plea to the child (kanne-young one) to sing in Tamil with yAz accompaniment..

The poet is singing to a child. 
The poet has love for the language but he puts sometimes in shoes of somebody who lack love in their heart.

When I run into (nErkayil) sadness (thunbam,
will you please play the harp (yAzh; bring me joy (inbam)

Sing in Tamil, please will you alleviate the distress (allal neekka) in the mind (nenju) of loveless (anbillaa)

Second Para :

வன்பும் எளிமையும் சூழும் நாட்டிலே 
வாழ்வின் உணர்வு சேர்க்க - எம் 
வாழ்வின் உணர்வு சேர்க்க - நீ 
அன்றை நற்றமிழ்க் கூத்தின் முறையினால் 
ஆடிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா? கண்ணே 
ஆடிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா?

The poet not only wishes a song set to yAz music. 
He wants more. 
He pleads with the child to perform kooththu (a dance form).

vanbum eLimaiyum sUzhum naattilE
vanbu-extravaganze, haughty show
eLimai-simplicity -->humility.

In the land (naattil) bring surrounded (sUzhum) by both vanbu and eLimai, 
will you please bring out the true feeling of life
Would you please give a show of fine Tamil koothu
Would you please?

anRai naRRamizhk koothu muRai(it could mean Tamil Koothu system of yesteryears (anRai)or the dance form sweet like amizhthu (nectar of celestials)

There are many types of koothu (it is a system of dance) mentioned in silappathikaaram composed by Chera Prince Ilango.

Third Para :

அறமிதென்றும் யாம் மறமிதென்றுமே 
அறிகிலாத போது - யாம் 
அறிகிலாத போது - தமிழ் 
இறைவனாரின் திருக்குறளிலே ஒரு சொல் 
இயம்பிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா? - நீ
இயம்பிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா?

The poet talks about Valluvar who wrote 1330 couplets divided into three chapters covering various aspects of life in terse form.

kuRaL -short poem, aRam-virtue.. maRam (thamizh)~ veera (skt)-valor. maRam is subtly different.. It is courage in a virtuous sense.

When we (yaam) are not clear about aRam and maRam 
Would you please recite (iyambu) a couplet from our law giver.

iRaiyanaar- iRai is dispense.. give away, spill

iRaiyanar==valluvar who gave us moral code of living well.

Final Para :

புறம் இதென்றும் நல் அகம் இதென்றுமே 
புலவர் கண்ட நூலின் - தமிழ்ப் 
புலவர் கண்ட நூலின் - நல் 
திறமை காட்டி உனை ஈன்ற எம்உயிர்ச் 
செல்வம் ஆகமாட்டாயா? தமிழ்ச் 
செல்வம் ஆக மாட்டாயா?

Bharathidaasan has composed a number of devotional songs set to music in his early days. 
When he met Bharathi he had shared a number of his poems and Bharathiaar was impressed. 
One of the common thing about these poets was that they were well versed in ancient texts and music.

The poet wishes the child to develop skills by reading the ancient texts that were characterized into: aham and puRam. 
Aham deals with love and life concerning the hero and heroine. 
Puram deals with war, virtues of emperors and life outside the family.

Won't you exhibit skills of Tamil poets
Won't you master aham and puRam of
yore and become
Wealth to this soul that begot (iinRa) you 
Won’t you become a wealth for Tamil! Oh darling

The Tamil Lyrics :

துன்பம் நேர்கையில் யாழ் எடுத்து நீ
இன்பம் சேர்க்க மாட்டாயா? - எமக் 
கின்பம் சேர்க்க மாட்டாயா? - நல் 
அன்பிலா நெஞ்சில் தமிழில் பாடி நீ 
அல்லல் நீக்க மாட்டாயா? - கண்ணே 
அல்லல் நீக்க மாட்டாயா?

வன்பும் எளிமையும் சூழும் நாட்டிலே 
வாழ்வின் உணர்வு சேர்க்க - எம் 
வாழ்வின் உணர்வு சேர்க்க - நீ 
அன்றை நற்றமிழ்க் கூத்தின் முறையினால் 
ஆடிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா? கண்ணே 
ஆடிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா?

அறமிதென்றும் யாம் மறமிதென்றுமே 
அறிகிலாத போது - யாம் 
அறிகிலாத போது - தமிழ் 
இறைவனாரின் திருக்குறளிலே ஒரு சொல் 
இயம்பிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா? - நீ
இயம்பிக் காட்ட மாட்டாயா?

புறம் இதென்றும் நல் அகம் இதென்றுமே 
புலவர் கண்ட நூலின் - தமிழ்ப் 
புலவர் கண்ட நூலின் - நல் 
திறமை காட்டி உனை ஈன்ற எம்உயிர்ச் 
செல்வம் ஆகமாட்டாயா? தமிழ்ச் 
செல்வம் ஆக மாட்டாயா?

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Kannamaa, is what my father called me. The Jigarthanda song.

Greetings.

It's drizzling over here. Not warm neither cold, but definitely better than dry and humid.
I have been down with the fever, flu and sore throat for the past one week and more. 
Visited the doctor, thrice. Yes, thrice. The last, being yesterday night.
My temperature was at 39.5 to 40 degrees Celsius high, so the doctor gave me 2 injections.
One for the fever and the other for the throat infection. 
I am half recovered now. The is a slight running nose and a lesser than mild cough, but way better than what I was the whole of last week.
And, for the first time in days, I slept well. 
I miss Appa, especially at moments like these. Amma is a wonderful caretaker, nevertheless. All 100%. She made me rice porridge. She poached eggs. She made Chinese noodles. And bought me, fresh coconut water. I am being pampered to the max. But, I miss Appa, despite all.....

Kannamaa, is how Appa called, me. I still raise eyes if someone does so, out of the blue. 
It's equalent to being called the Queen. The exact way Appa doted upon me. Like a Queen. I have no doubt that even Amma and Akka were second to me. I was, definitely, the only apple of his eye. And, that is the plain truth.....

I enjoy this song. It's a little eccentric, though. I was suppose to watch the movie at the theatres recently, but had to make way for something else. Everyone is raving about it. And, I am a big fan of Naalaya Iyakunar contestants. Karthik Subburaj, the director is one. And there is also the young talents comprising of Siddarth, Lakshmi Menon and Bobby Simha. People who ACTUALLY act, not flaunt. So, more reasons to watch this movie.....

Signing of, now. 
Take care. God bless.
Sleepy..... Thanks to all the medication. 

p/s :- using an iPad to blog is like using a GPS tracker in the Sahara Desert. Or perhaps I am not too Internet savvy especially with iOS devices. 


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Po Indru Neeyaaga from Velaiyilla Pattathari

Heyya everyone.....
Hope everything is as rosy as it ought to be.

Malaysia is in mourning. Our national flag and all state flags will fly at half mast until the 21st of July 2014. Our second major tragedy, this year. And, barely 4 months after losing the MH370 to God-knows-where. 

It is heart wrenching to watch the news. Be it local or international. The stories of the unfortunate passengers who boarded the plane, stab you like a titanium knife. The happy lives they lived, lost in split second. 

CNN calls it the "worst crime scene in the world". We cannot fail to agree. It's an active war zone. There are so many setbacks. The rebels. The pro Russians. The politicising. The pin pointing. The looting. The blazing temperature. The rotting bodies. The stolen black box. It's just devastating. 

And, in the midst of all this gloominess, we are trying to console ourselves with the little happy things. 

I received a whatsapp message this late evening. From a friend. 
"Watch this !" it read.
"The girl's name is Shalini. And she wears lots of churidar suits, just like you. :) It's a fun movie. I can watch it with you - for the second time ;)"
I reply with a ":)". 
This video clip is attached. 
It is love at first sight for me. First sight and first listen. 
Not just because my favourite actor Dhanush is singing it, and the lead actor in the movie, but because the video is done in perfect taste. 
So very very romantic.
Watch it. And listen to the oh-so-beautiful lyrics. 
It soothes the heart at this testing time.....
A "Shalu" kind of song ;) 

Have a great week. Take care. Stay blessed.

Love, 
-Shalu- 



Sunday, June 29, 2014

10 reasons (and more) why EVERYONE should watch Pannaiyarum Padminiyum.

I am definite about this movie.
That everyone should watch it.
A great movie inspired by a 10 minute short film from Naalaya Iyakunar.
If there is one film for 2014 which blew my mind, made me sit up and smile and awe over the evolving Tamil film industry, this was it.
Watch it. All of it. Don't miss even a second. It is way too beautiful to miss.
A decent movie that evokes the sentiments. Of love, family and relationships. Be it with human or inanimate objects.
What-A-Movie.
I am certain this movie is headed for a string of awards and accolades.
10 reasons why EVERYONE must watch this stellar. 
  1. Jayaprakash, the Pannaiyar.  The a Number One reason. He is brilliant in his role. The main reason why I have watched this movie, all 152 minutes, three times. And each time, unfazed and with the same level of content. As the village Pannaiyar, as the loving husband, as the devoted father. In every scene, he scores a perfect 10. His expressions, flawless. His acting ability, astounding. I am an ardent fan of his. Ardent, yes. 
  2. Thulasi, Chellama, the Pannaiyar's wife. Gawd, she does her role in equal to the brilliance of the Pannaiyar. She is a natural. The wife who stands by her husband. Filial. Encouraging. Flirty. Their chemistry is perfect. So perfect, that I felt they fared far better than the younger couple. 
  3. Vijay Sethupathi as the Driver Murugesan. One of my favourite actors ranks third, in this movie. The elderly couple were too good. But, Vijay Sethupathi plays his part very well. As he always does. He is indeed a versatile actor. He shines as the Pannaiyar's driver. He radiates as the son like figure to the Pannaiyar's wife. And, the down to earth lover to the heroine. 
  4. Padmini, the car.  This awesome premier vehicle, is green in colour, large, strong and holds a major capacity in the movie. It is the village's stately symbol. And half the title of the movie. 
  5. The beautiful songs. All of them. Justin Prabhakaran, the movie music director should be applauded for an all line up of heart melting numbers. Vaali has penned the lyrics for three of the songs. My favourite is Onnakaaga Poranthene as well as Ennakaaga Poranthaaye. Back to back male and female versions. Love, described in such magnificence. 
  6. Peedai @ Peruchaali.  The guy's actual name is Balasaravanan. He adds laughter to the already candid moments. He has a special ability. What? Well, watch it. You will know. It's indeed so very hilarious.
  7. Neelima Rani, the daughter. The villain of the movie. You will despise her. Daughters always  prioritise their parents even after marriage. This is fact. But, not in her case. She is constantly trying to loot something from her parental home. And, she plays her part so well, you will frown disapprovingly every time she visits her parents. 
  8. Original screenplay by S U Arunkumar.  What a screenplay. He is the brainchild to this awesome movie. He hails from the Naalaya Iyakunar league. So, it's not surprising at all. He has all the makings to be a celebrated young director. Hats off. 
  9. Gokul Benoy's cinematography. I have always been a huge fan of cinematography. Like Rajiv Menon. Mark Koninckx. Manoj Paramahamsa. Benoy has done great justice to the entire movie. Crisp, clear and overwhelming shots. I watched it on HD and DVD. Original. They did not play at a cinema near home. Had they, I would have, watched it there. Three times, undoubtedly. Just like am doing now. 
  10. The string of awards. That it is going to win. Watch it before it is going to be the talk of the town. It is, already now. But do so, before the juries from acclaimed bodies, get together and decide so. Then, when they give away the awards, you will smile, knowing you have watched an awesome screenplay, prior to its merit bestowal. 
When you finish watching this movie, that feel good motor response is going to enfold you. Trust me. 

Have a blessed week. July is just days away. Yes I have been a horrible, lazy blogger - sincere apologies. :-)

Take care. God Bless.