Color Me Happy

Pistachio ice cream, Tangerine whip. I read the names of the colors as I hold my mother’s hand by her index finger, tightly, while she chatters on with the man behind the desk of the paint store. What kinds of names are these I think: not green, not orange but pistachio ice cream, tangerine whip! …

I Pledge Allegiance. Twice.

APJ Abdul Kalam, the 11th President of India passed away on July 27 2015. August 15 2015, India turned 68 years old.We celebrated independence day and honored APJ: his dedication to science, education and patriotism to India. In these days of deep divisions, I believe, in death Abdul Kalam wanted to send us a strong message. APJ, a Muslim born of …

Route 15 From Las Vegas

“..two roads diverged in the wood, and I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference…”: Robert Frost Roy jammed the 10 gallon hat on his head as he settled down on the hood of his Pontiac thunderbird. This time it looked to be a long wait and the sun was …

Ageless in Alien Worlds

….  I, to the world am like a drop of water That in the ocean seeks another drop, ….. William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors     We made it! We made it on time; equipped with low chairs, a picnic basket and adequately chilled wine. The setting sun casts an orange glow over the grassy slope where we …

Do Brown People Tan?

I am not one to swoon in support of Bobby Jindal, the 13th or 15th (or is it 20th?) declared aspirant in the republican nomination – you know that guy – tanned and ready? Before he was tanned and ready he was American and not Indian American. And even before that he was Christian and not …

Memorial Day is for Moms

Matt and Priya were classmates. I met Mrs. Manoukian for the first time when she came to drop Matt off for a birthday party. She rang the doorbell. “Can we stay too?” Matt ran in without pause. I saw Matt’s brother looking up at me. His chubby palm circled mommy’s manicured finger. His look was …

A Walk in the Wetlands

The wetlands behind Shoreline Park, just a short distance from Highway 101 but a whole world apart, are magical today. Finally, after a year of severe drought we have had a month of rain, hard rain; enough to bring the water level back up to the edge of the walking trail. Water has been pouring …

Garden of People

My father leans over the balustrade to look at his garden. He is making sure plants that need protection from frost have been tended to. There is a chill in the evening air and a good chance that temperatures will dip below freezing tonight. I stand on my tippy toes, bolstered up by my elbows, chin …

My First Friend

His name is Mahmoud. I don’t think anything of it even though I know no one else by that name. True, my mother’s name is Prakash and I have another aunt by that name. My father has a brother in law with the same name as his. So does uncle Sheel. But then, my name …

Closet Communications

When John and Mira went looking for a place to live in suburban San Francisco the first thing Mira wanted to check out were the closets. And she would laugh “this is not a closet, not even close!” Growing up, Mira’s favorite place was the closet in her house. Besides being the place where she …