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Extraordinary in the ordinary

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During a trip to the Netherland’s capital city of Amsterdam, affectionately called the flower shop of the world, I visited a local market and picked up dried tulip bulbs for my father. Back in India, I handed over that pack of bulbs to him, quite happy to gift…

I donated blood on my 18th birthday for the first time. My father was the force behind this start. For his contribution to the blood donation movement and having donated blood 104 times, he was felicitated as a Star Blood Donor by then vice-president Bhairon Singh Shekhawat in…

Back in 2000, my father fulfilled my wish to keep a dog. My mother and I visited a couple whose Labrador had delivered 11 pups. As aunty opened the door, that sight can never leave me. From the other end of the corridor, bundles of Golden and Black…

In 2002, I was ready to step out of Ambala for the national capital city of Delhi. As I packed my bags to begin the new phase of my life at Lady Shri Ram College for Women, my father gave me two gifts. The first was his pocket-size…

We have a plantation of roses hugging an entire wall of the porch at our home in Ambala. Come March and April, it explodes into kaleidoscopic blossoms, each with a character of its own. This year we have had blood-red roses effusing a strong and authentic gulabari jal…

Summers are the season of chilled local coolers. Who can miss the rose and pista flavour of the thandai, the tangy green mango masala of the aam panna, the sweet and colourful ice crystals of the chuski, and the zing of the lemonade soda of the banta? I…

As far back as I can go in time, my memories are peppered with shades of nature. And by nature, I don’t mean only the trees and the flowers. I mean insects, reptiles, and rodents. They were all my friends. It could’ve very well been one-sided love but…