A photo excursion to Glasgow University -Kelvingrove Park-Art Gallery and Museum

A good friend offered to take me for a photo excursion to Kevingrove Park , Glasgow university and the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

He is passionate about photography.

We drove first to Kelvingrove park . The weather was cold . We got a few pictures since there was no rain .

The Oak tree intrigued me with its majestic appearance. Moreover it’s leaf had 5-6 parts . Autumn changes led to the colour change happening .

We crossed the bridge over a river. I saw two students feeding a bold squirrel and missed a picture as my dslr needed a correction . Tony did the needful .

We moved on to the Glasgow University.

The exterior structure was impressive. As we entered I was surprised to see the Mid-wife department among others .

Two students were practising kick boxing . What was unique were the arches where I was photographed. We entered in and saw the grand staircase with a beautiful carpet all the way up

On leaving we walked down a path and I learnt that some of the grounds were sold to the University by a hospital earlier which has shifted to a larger area nearby .

Most interesting was the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum . Before viewing the various items on display we took a break at the cafe to have their soup of the day .

There was a lot to see at the museum on art, design,and much more. Items on display change periodically.

The paintings were most interesting. I saw many original paintings of the Glasgow team of artists . There were country side themes, a station scene and tennis players of old times . The model of an antique car interested me most . The designer was James Anderson. The car had unique features . It was believed to travel at 100 Mph . The speedometer was on the bonnet , headlights rotated in the direction of the steering . A full windscreen could be replaced by aeroplane style smaller screens at the turn of a handle when increasing speed.

Dali’s painting of the crucifixion of Jesus was stunning . It gives a view from the top – down . Below is the world for which , Jesus came as Saviour .

Let’s hope that world leaders give importance to the recent climate changes at the Conference in Glasgow, to ensure precautions needed to preserve our environment.

Our trip ended with the drive back . The various roads we drove through would soon be closed for the Climate Conference.

Seasons of Life

Why do we have seasons

of sunny weather and white winters

Autumn of hope

And the birth of Spring

Can we overlook autumn

Cos it causes Fall

Wait a while

Before the fall of leaves

There is the riot of colour

Green to red and rust

who could imagine that

Uniform green could change

To such diverse colours

Life changes with years

Newness of life to mellowness of age

Is it all about the bold and beautiful

And what about wisdom of the wise

Discovery of talents

coffee chats and creativity

Time for tennis and golf with friends

To follow football and cricket

and critical comments thereafter

Cherish quiet times with loved ones

Specially with the Master of all

Who we return to

at the end of all seasons

Squirrels ahoy ! ( Fluffy and Duffy )

“Hey Duffy , let’s visit the garden below .”

“What’s the hurry Fluffy ? “ responds Duffy .

“Do you realise winter is approaching? We need to stock up our food reserves .” says Fluffy.

“ I think we can manage for the week Fluffy .”

“ Just think. will that last for the long winter months ?” asks Fluffy

“You have a point there , but where will we store our reserves ? “ enquires Duffy .

“Simple ! ! We hide them at different locations in the garden and the bark of trees.” answers Fluffy .

“Another concern is the scarcity of our food type ; buds , fruit and nuts will not be easily seen in the winter days .” worries Duffy .

“Oh Duffy , do you see the bird feeder this human family keeps replenishing ? Let’s try getting some of that . “

“ Listen Fluffy, that feeder can be difficult to reach . It’s meant for birds only .”

“ That’s no problem .I’ll show you the way. You remain on the ground below the feeder .”

So Fluffy went to the top of the wooden frame and accessed the feeder by descending downwards . He began feeding on the bird food . Duffy waited below for any feed dropping on the floor.

“Listen Fluffy. I have an idea. Chew onto the string holding the feeder and let the feeder fall . Then we can have a feast .”

Fluffy chewed the string and down came the feeder. They both enjoyed the feed .

Now what happened next is interesting .

The family took time to restore the feeder to its original position and thus ended the squirrels adventure.

Fluffy and Duffy resumed their search for food in berries , flower buds , and nuts.

They both realised that it’s always good to

‘Save for the times when there may be scarcity .’ ( the saying commonly used – save for a rainy day or the wintry days ! )

The bird feeder provided food for that day , and depended on the compassion of the human family to restore and replenish it.

Autumn leaves and life

The trees beckon me as I walk pass them . I noticed one tree with leaves well marked and serrations at its edges . I picked one and walked further . How about the new leaves , I thought ,which looked appealing . I returned to pluck the little fresh leaves and walked home .

Aging of life struck me . Just as man ages so does all life . However the life lived is important. Have you noticed the old leaf has a few tears , may be due to the weather . It has good markings and well shaped . Of the Young leaves , one looks good while the other has tears.

Environment has an impact on the life of the tree and its leaves . How does the tree adjust to the strong winds , heat and even polluted atmosphere? There will be some wear and tear when it is exposed to such weather. Good rains and a good environment will help the growth of this tree .

In mankind, our lives get affected by our surroundings and our adaptation to them. Whether young or old , how one lives is important.

Do I live a life of moderation or one in the fast lane ? I am sure you will know the effect of either .

Wear and tear can occur at any time, irrespective of age . The day we are born , one begins to age ….however one can live a full life with grace from God. Facing the challenges of life become easier.

In autumn, leaves begin to change colour . There is beauty even when a leaf ages . It’s colour can be very attractive.

Inner beauty gets reflected on the outside in a person , no matter the age.

Jesus helps to live a full life .

He says ‘ The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy I have come so that they may have life and have it to the full.’ (John 10:10)

Emma vs Leylah: the crucial point

Emma Raducano won the US Open Tennis Grand Slam 2021 . It has been a fantastic achievement for a qualifier ranked about 150 in women’s tennis.

She won her match with Leylah Fernandez another teenager 6-4, 6-3, after a pulsating final , which the score line hardly suggests .

What was the turning point of this hard fought match ?

Without detracting from Emma’s game the point was when she fell while returning to Leylah and was 30-40 on her service . The momentum was with Leylah. She could have broken Emma’s service at the next point . However Emma began bleeding a little from her bruised leg . The referee called for a medical timeout .

This got extended while her wound was dressed . On the other side we saw Leylah expressing her anguish at the length of time being taken . Her protests with the tournament supervisor went in vain .

When play resumed , Emma held her serve and went on to win the match.

My dear reader what is your opinion ?

Leylah had come back from the previous rounds after being a set down. She won matches against Osaka, Angelique Kerber, Kvitova and Sabalenka all in 3 sets . These are previous champions or in the top 5 .

Do you think Leylah could have won this match with Emma ?

Badey Bhai: Aroon

Is there a difference between friendship and brotherhood ? Aroon is a friend but has been more than a brother to me . I could not resist in writing this blog.

Aroon shared stories of his younger days . He spent a part of his childhood until 4 years old, in Mangalore as a result of which his knowledge of English was limited.

When he was brought to Bombay ( now Mumbai) his schooling in English left him lagging behind others . A teacher Mrs.Betty Guerra included him in her class for slow learners . This brought about a sea change and Aroon began rising to the top 10 in the class .

At the high school level he proved to be an excellent sportsman . He won the Intermediate championship in Athletics, and was good at football, basketball and hockey.

He thought he had a calling to the priesthood and joined the Jesuits seminary soon after school. He spent 9 years when doubts crept in . After serious discernment he decided to take a break from the Jesuits after completing a Bachelor in Philosophy degree .

In a short time thereafter Cupid’s arrow struck . He was on the ship to Goa . A group of teachers were also on this voyage. That is when he met Elaine . As the ship sailed through choppy waters, Elaine was impressed with his calm faith in God .

Much later Elaine heard Aroon speak at a church event and the rest became his -her-story leading them both to the altar for a marriage made in heaven.

Aroon later did a diploma in HR with Xavier’s Institute of Management. He worked several places with Contour, Chaitra , Lintas, did Head Hunting and then Administrator with a Teacher Training Organisation.

The best still awaited . He left professional services to make himself available to the Community of Jesus: Light of the World, and went on to lead as Senior Coordinator. This is a community of committed Christians affiliated to the Catholic Church and the Sword of the Spirit Communities worldwide.

I remember writing a tribute in the Community newsletter ‘Maranatha’ , when he handed over the mantle of leadership to his successor Agnelo, that Aroon will never hang up his boots ; he will continue to serve in any way he is called .

He has proved to be a brother who always affirms and reaches out to others . He is creative and musically inclined . His writing skills were given as an example to others when studying at the seminary .

He has written and directed several plays for the J B Petit School where Elaine was a teacher .

Importantly Aroon is a great Family man …

He is father of 2, Sandeep and Sangeeta and grandfather of 4. He dotes over his grandchildren of whom he has written some humorous articles (always beginning with Papa:) in the Community newsletter .

Some years later , I requested him to join my team when I took on the mantle of Senior Coordinator in the Community of Jesus:Light of the World. He obliged and was a great support to me during my tenure. We consider each other as Badey Bhai and Chhote Bhai (Hindi for big brother and small brother) I have known him to speak up when it matters. We were so close that we fought the good fight in discussions when one did not agree with the other …. but always maintained our brotherhood .

In Aroon’s words :

“The years of being in the Leadership Team of CJLOW brought me into closer interaction with you (Vincent). We developed a closer relationship because of openness, transparency and (forthrightness??) Our candidness insaying what was on our mind, even heatedly at times helped to clear the air. Agreed to disagree, sometimes. But remained friends”

He visited me often during my cancer treatment. The chats with him were always encouraging . I know that Aroon has likewise reached out to many who may be sick and need assistance.

His interest in music and song is notable. Often he could put a choir together and either sing or contribute with the guitar. The occasions could be for church events, weddings and even funerals. He has written poems and adapted songs to suit the occasion . He has raised memorable toasts at weddings with his wit and command over the English language .

One attribute I admire most is Aroon’s ability to affirm others for their talent , or a job well done . The second is his sense of humour . Occasionally he sent me into splits of laughter when he recounted incidents and gave it a twist of wit.

So this my friends is all about brotherhood

A call to go beyond oneself to be of service to another .

Keep up the good work Badey Bhai !

Aroon and Elaine
Grandchildren Nirvan and Araya
Grandchildren Christin and Matt
Vincent and Aroon

Tennis for a cause : service with smiles

The last six months were very eventful . I was given the latest treatment for cancer in UK which helped me to recover remarkably .

I’ve been suffering since the past two and half years , and this Car-T cell therapy was the last option .

The NHS specialised department , gave me the best care . I was also a recipient of care from the Beatson’s Center for Scanning .

Now I’ve been able to live a normal and full life . One of my dreams was to return to playing tennis . A good friend agreed to have a few sessions with me at the Giffnock Tennis club , of which I’ve become a member.

A recent event was organised by the club to raise funds for the Beatson’s Center . It was the Jean Invitation Tennis Tournament . This lady was herself a regular tennis playing member who has cancer .

I being a beneficiary of the good care received from NHS and the Beatson’s Center decided to also participate .

It was a great day . The tennis was more fun than competitive with two large teams being formed from about 40 gents and ladies . The points and games were a mix with a lot of innovations mainly doubles . Sponsors for beverages pitched in to quench one’s thirst between games .

I enjoyed myself , with tennis and meeting the various participants. Towards the end of the event Jean ( in whose name the event was organised) made an appearance and was given a grand ovation by all present .

The thought of fundraisers for cancer has struck a chord in my heart .

I’ve also heard of marathons and half marathons being run for this cause . Surely the generosity of people will help in alleviating a lot of distress when terminal illness strikes .

May such gestures multiply in the future .

Different Strokes: A Profile of Ganesh Tayde

It was a pleasure to meet Ganesh Tayde, at his exhibition .

The Strokes exhibition was unique. It thrilled me to see the various exhibits .

There were art works of fashionable models in elegant attire . Birds and animals seemed to present themselves in just a few strokes of a brush

Intrigued I asked Ganesh how does he conceptualise this work .

I was under the impression that with a few strokes he developed the drawing at that moment .

He shared his story that , he first looks at what is required of him by a client . He then works around the idea on paper , sometimes about 35 drafts for one product. He selects the most suitable one and then gives it a finish .

His work speaks for him . This latest venture into strokes is most creative . He also exhibited some excellent paintings with various themes .

Ganesh has been an Arts professor for years and many of his students are now renowned artists themselves

He specialises in graphic designing and paintings and has been in this line for the past 40years . We wish him many years of Creativity .

May he inspire all his students to become inspirational like him.

Ganesh’s contact details:

gmtayde20@gmail.com

http://www.ganeshtayde.com

Edinburgh and Greyfriars Bobby

The visit to Edinburg was keenly anticipated. We thought of joining the walking tours with a guide .

This idea had to be shelved as I realized that at Edinburgh there were steep slopes and being a senior citizen I would not cope with this .

Anjean and I with our daughter Larissa and her husband Lloyd agreed that we do our own walking tour.

There seemed to be a holiday atmosphere. People were dressed in colourful summer attire, good walking shoes and cameras .

We began our walk with first a visit to Starbucks . The coffee and hospitality was warm and efficient.

We then proceeded to the St Giles Cathedral which has so much history…. a bit of heartbreak in that , bringing into focus the split in the church . I was very impressed with the stained glass Windows. The special cordoned area for the choir , seemed quite unique.

St Giles Cathedral

As we walked along , we approached the Edinburgh castle . This was a good spot for photographs .

I was surprised to be see the India Cross made of sandstone. It was erected to commemorate the 78th Regiment of Highlanders who quelled a mutiny from the Indian soldiers who fought against British rule in 1857. The Regiment was jointly awarded the Victoria Cross .( I wonder what happened to the Indian soldiers )

The India Cross has an elephant carved at its base . This elephant badge was awarded to the regiment in 1803 .

Thirty years later the regiment brought a real elephant to Edinburgh. It was well looked after with beer etc and led parades at ceremonial occasions.

We resumed our walk and refreshed ourselves with waffle icecreams .

The most interesting part of our walk was to see a statue of Greyfriars Bobby erected for his fidelity .

Statue of Greyfriars Bobby

The legend goes that Greyfriars Bobby befriended Colour Sergeant Scott . He would follow Scott to his home at 38 Candlemaker Row . The latter trained him to move from Greyfriars Kirkyard when the guns from Edinburgh Castle sounded at 1pm to Traills Coffee House at 6 Greyfriars Row where he was fed his dinner of a hot meat pie . Colour Sergeant Scott often joined him there.

When his master died in 1858 ,Greyfriars Bobby followed his master’s remains to Greyfriars Churchyard and lingered there until his death in 1872.

We had a quiet moment at the Churchyard .

Our walk ended with a sumptuous lunch at one of the popular restaurants Macker’s Mash Bar. We chose to sit out for our meal. If you are familiar with Glasgow and Edinburgh you notice many seagulls flying around . I was shocked to see a bold seagull land up on the table nearby after the diners finished their meal, to enjoy the remainder!

One cannot forget the grand architecture of the buildings at Edinburgh . George Herriots School was a spot where ‘Harry Potter’ fans show so much interest . Of course the story is quite different from the reality .

The pastry shop Patisserie Valerie was quite appealing. Lockkdown has not been helpful as the display was limited and the pastries we selected were well decorated but not too fresh.

We strolled around the shopping centre . The trams plying through the town caught my eye.

Finally we made our way back to the car park and Lloyd and Larissa saw us home to Glasgow after a long drive back .

A walk in the cold wintry air

My grandson does not believe in a walk . For him it’s more a frolic and a jump into any puddle.

“Daniel, you’ll get wet “ I tell him .

He smiles and looks for the next one .

“Grandpa, look, I’m only a little wet”

But when you see him, the wetness is more than you can imagine .

However Karen is patience personified. She happens to be my daughter and Daniel’s mother.

We walked for about 45 minutes As a senior citizen I tried a bit of slow running . The cold air of Clarkston was refreshing but biting through the 3 layers of coats.

Seeing Daniel tag along and jumping into the puddles left me wondering. From where did he get that energy and adaptation to the cold weather (3*)

Daniel’s fun ends with fatigue setting in after about 30 minutes, and he cries out “Mummy carry me.” I’m amazed at how Karen can carry him the rest of the walk as he is quite heavy.

We are in the midst of the pandemic.

But the walk with social distancing keeps us in good health.

For Daniel …..the puddles and frolic are the escapades from the routine at home.

This little blog was written during the winter in Scotland