Stories from Botswana

A while back, Appa pappa ( who else?) showed me a book with a strange title: “No.1 Ladies Detective Agency”. Intrigued, I started reading it. I never imagined I would be hooked onto a story set in Botswana, about a lady detective – Mma Ramotswe – I dont even know how to say the Mma part, but i do know its the equivalent of Madam. Mma Ramotswe – the Botswana equivalent of Miss Marple – simple, with “Traditional” views – running the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency, the only detective agency in whole of Botswana. And running it with all the commonsense and wordly wisdom one can imagine. What I loved about that book was the simplicity of the narrative and the storytelling, and the interweaving of Mma Ramotswe’s personal and professional life.

So yesterday I picked up another of the series – called The Good Husband of Zebra Drive. Alexander McCall Smith has not let me down so far – his characters, the lead detective, her assistant, her husband Mr. JLB Maketoni – all these are so real and believable. I can substitute each of them with a person I know! He’s really managed to bring Botswana to the readers, while keeping his characters so real that you can “see” them.

Keep it up, Mma Ramotswe!

Update to this post -thanks to lostonthestreet . Go here if you are interested in knowing how to say “Mma” or Madam in Setswana ( the language of Botswana).

Anoushka reads to N

N’s cousin sister Anoushka is visiting her. In Anoushka’s words: ” I like to read to N, play with her in the park with her new ball, put on her clothes, select her clothes for the day”.

They are having tons of fun together. Its great to have Anoushka here, we wish she could stay with us longer.

The tag of 55

Lost on the street” tagged me on this where I have to continue the story that has been building up in not more than 55 words..

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What happened so far.
“She wondered if she could ever count each of the twinkling stars in the night sky. The clock in the tower struck 9. She had to get back to reading her text book, ignoring the weird grumbling noises her stomach was making. The flickering orange street light looked like it would go put any minute.” [galadriel]
she considered her options. she cud complete reading before the light died on her. or she cud eat. or of course, she could attempt to count the stars. it was in the midst of this contemplation that her phone buzzed. books aside, hunger aside… she now focussed on the screen. should she answer… she wondered. [rayshma]
She decided to let it ring.. must be her mother calling to find out if she was alright. She was really tired of her mom checking on her four times every day! And then she heard it, a blood curdling scream filled the air. There were sounds of running feet ,followed by another shrill scream! [preethi]
She stood up to see where the sound had come from. It was a bratty toddler throwing a tantrum. The phone was still ringing shrilly. She picked it up. It was not her mother. “Hello”, said a voice from the other end. “Did you get my e-mail?” “Yes” she laughed. “I just finished reading it.” [DotThoughts]
“So?” her sister asked. “So what?” She replied giggling to herself. Her sister replied back annoyingly “You know what I’m talking about! So don’t pretend and be a tease.” “OK OK!” She laughed. “I think he’s nice. But you have met him personally so you will know better.” “Thank God!” her sister sighed with relief! [~nm]
Relieved that atleast she bothered to scan through the profile , instead of summarily dismissing them. It was a determined effort of the elder sister to see the younger one in bridal finery. She would airily dismiss the younger one’s concerns about the reality of marital bliss. Wasn’t her own perfect wedded life enough proof? [Lost on the street]
She thought back to their childhood days. Her sister had always tried to control her life, she sighed. Always thought she knew what was best for her kid sister. And things had not changed a bit, even though they were both now adults – her elder sister married with a little child, and she precipitously hanging onto the edge of bachelorhood.

I tag madmomma

The Lone Wolf’s Song: Poem

White is the moon,
White is the snow,
White is the fur,
That glistens and glows.

White is the river,
White are the woods,
Whereupon, a lone wolf sings
A lone wolf song.

Sad with yearning,
The song mourns,
A million years
Of lonely white moons.

Deep are the desires
Strange is the night
While white moons haunt
Yet how lovely is the white.

White is the fur,
That glistens and glows,
White is the moon,
And white is the snow.

A day with Appa away & visa angsts

Appapappa left for Vancouver to get his visa this morning – at the unearthly hour of 5. I was hoping the guy would miss me – instead he was busy eating the “best indian food” at the “best downtown location”. Ok, ok – I should just let the poor guy have some fun. I do hope he comes back tomorrow, there seems to be a chance he may have to hang around there for 4-5 days to get his visa.

This entire visa process feels so derogatory sometimes – like begging somebody to let you into their door.

Me: “Please, please. Your house is so pretty and clean. Please let me in. I would like to be a slave here.”
They: “Go away. Our house is only for nice pretty people. Who are you anyway”?
Me: “I live in the next block – err… ya, the slightly dirtly one with lots of people in it. Thats why I want to come into your neat and clean house and slave away.”
They: ” Umm.. okay. But what if you refuse to leave when you have finished slaving.”
Me secretly thinking: I’ll never finish slaving. But here’s what I will say: “Of course i will leave. I will miss my mother and father and brother and sister and uncle and aunt .. and will leave. Now will you please let me in.”
They: “Okay, but promise you will work all the time, you will say skedule when you mean schedule and you talk to me only by appointment”.
Me: “Promise. Yippeee.. I get to be a slave in the clean big house”

And so on. You get the drift.