Wednesday, 5 March 2014

The Numbers this March


There are all kinds of numbers in our life and not all are Natural. Some are Odd, some are used to getting Even. Some we do not want to divide like a cheese pizza between five, others we wish would subtract themselves on their own from around our girth. But some numbers feel more Prime than others. They feel special. Dates or times, calls or discounts – we all have a little number book in our heads, The Anthology of Celebratory Numbers. I do. 

A double-digit maths score from school (I passed?) or a three digit electricity bill (thanks AAP). High score in Mario Bros (always!) or shoes inside new shoe boxes (to the power zero). Certain numbers come to occupy a certain place in our minds, even hearts sometimes. They may be forgotten the next day or remain etched in permanent ink in that anthology I talk about. But numbers, like our ages, are always on an onward march in their own sweet ways. It’s March, and I talk of some such digits.  

Say for instance 22. Two little ducks 22, says the man announcing the house in Bingo. Why the number becomes significant for me? After 22 years of teaching, my mother decided to hang her boots. Over 2 decades of spending 1/3rd of each day going to the same school to teach her children, and be taught in return, she put in her papers. She says it was instinctual. She was not tired but other things suddenly seemed to seek her attention more. She wanted to swim freestyle now in her pool of life. She made her decision on her own. But the storm in her mind continues. That angel-devil marriage that says “right thing done-wrong thing done”. It’s done, but she keeps repeating it to me ‘22 years is a really long time.’ I know how long it is numerically but I will not know how long a time it is in this passionate teacher’s mind. The only certainty is that on the 14th of March she will be given a grand farewell by a school which taught her brothers, her husband, her children, and now her nieces and nephews too. By teachers like herself! (Yes, we are unfurling the school flag on our roof top soon, maybe on the 14th of this March itself!)

14 too is a special number actually, called ‘school leaving time’ by the Bingo man (must tell mummy about the coincidence). It is a permanent favourite in my Anthology. 14th March is when my son was born (after 14 hours of labour, but that’s just a gory irrelevant coincidental detail no more). Which means, the day my mother retires, my son turns 3. Naturally, 14 becomes special to me. Double reason to celebrate it now, save up on an extra cake, and calories too. Clutching a cliché, time flew at mother fussing mach speed as 1 turned 2 to turn 3. Magically, as if! Very few special dates transform whole months to red velvet strawberry cheese cakes – smooth and delicious, like your child's birth date does. (We can cut a strawberry cake that day, why not! I can never eat just 1 slice.)

1 reminds me of those dreadful computer classes from school time. Binary was the name of a language (and you thought it was only that video game with an overgrown pac man eating balls?) and it worked with 1s and 0s. Dreadful, but I repeat myself. Those combinations of 1s and 0s made knots in my mind and earned me crosses in my report card. Only, March ’14 brought to my blog a combination I had never seen for myself, not even in the bank, I swear. 100,000 page views. Such a long number, like two trains put together with an engine combined. I still start counting backwards when I see big numbers to make myself sure (remember at the start, my Maths was bad?) – unit, tens, hundreds, thousand, ten thousand, lakh lakh vadaiyaan. My blog was viewed so many number of times. A round figure number and a fleeting favourite I froze before I refreshed the page. Before it turned to just another number in the series, albeit higher. See it in the picture?


Happy.

This March brings me some really special numbers. Like a water-colour painting of a sunny sky. Tinged in different shades of bright and happy yellow, and a little blue too. 

Do you too have some memorable ones circled in red ink, scribbled in that book I call The Anthology of Celebratory Numbers? Hiding in your head or maybe tucked deep inside your heart?

You know some of mine, the numbers this March.

60 comments:

  1. Such a happy and lovely post Sakshi. You deserve to celebrate this big number as it is your hard work out there. Enjoy the marching forward March :)

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  2. Lakh lakh Vadaiyaan, Sakshi! :D

    Contributing to your Anthology - A 100 on my Happily Ever After came up just yesterday.

    On a separate note, wish that the zeroes which follow that one double in half the time... :)

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    1. Congratulations to you too, Poonam. These round figures on the blog really make me feel happy. Oh well, the zeros will come at their own pace. Whenever I hit another milestone, I will still be celebrating it. :)
      Thank you. :)

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  3. I also share one date with you and that is
    mar 14,my daughter's birthday
    And congratulations on those six figures

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    1. Aha! Then we will be sharing Congratulations on the 14th. Like a 'Same to you' thing. :)
      Thanks a lot, Sitara.

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  4. Such a nice post.. simple yet awesome.. congratulations. . Keep writing..

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  5. Such a nice post.. simple yet awesome.. congratulations. . Keep writing..

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  6. Congrats Sakshi! Time to celebrate...:)

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    1. Celebrating, Shaivi. But something seems to be missing. Maybe, a breezer? ;)

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  7. Congratulations once again, Sakshi! A well-deserved happy occasion it is. I'm also really proud of your mother's decision, considering it is her own. 22 years indeed is pretty long. My mom continues to be a teacher for the past 34 year and I hope she does complete the remaining two years successfully too. March and the number 14 definitely works for you. I'm so glad that as aspired by you, your blog did get the magic number close to N's birthday. Lots of love and luck to you, now and always. As I always say, more and more power to you. :-)

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    1. Thank, Rekha. In you I have found not just a regular reader but a connect which goes beyond the virtual world. And now I learn both our mothers are teachers too. :)
      Looking forward to meeting you soon. ;)

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  8. Congrats , Stay happy ! its easy !

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  9. Congrats on your achievement! Loved the "swim freestyle" comment you made about your mom. :D

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    1. Thank you for reading, Rickie. (and the other thanks I dropped in the inbox!)
      Yes, she loves to swim and the imagery was picked from times when both participated in swimming competitions, where she always won and I came, ahem, paddling way behind. :D

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    1. Thanks, Jyotsna. You contributed to it too. :)

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  11. What a cool post. I simply loved the flow, just took me with it. Very few posts do that.

    Great work. We all have numbers etched, you're so right, Sakshi! :)

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    1. Thanks, Animesh. Glad you liked it. Yes, we all have numbers etched don't we? Um, maybe confession numbers too? ;)

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  12. Congratulations!! Its a delight for the readers :)

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    1. Thank you. For now, I am most delighted that you have starting visiting me regularly. :)
      Is it always post-midnight? ;)

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  13. Congratulations Sakshi
    The next zero is goin to take much less time than this one.. I can assure you that!
    Big bouquet of regards to Rekhi mam..22 yrs indeed is a long time .. and she would certainly be more than happy to see her best student (read daughter :)) doing so well!

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    1. Zuber, muh mein ghee shakkar.
      Rekhi ma'am remembers you, every 5th of Dec. :D Maybe you should meet her when you are in Doon next. Your(our) batch was her first batch taught. All firsts are special!
      Arrey, I was not her best student, ever. I was never a student only. :P

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    2. Mother is our first teacher, right? So that automatically makes you her student
      :P

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  14. Lovely little post highlighting quite a few important numbers, 22, 14 and of course the big 100 k as well :D

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    1. Thanks, Jai. You have a role to play in the 100k. :)

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  15. A very sweet post, made me think of all those numbers which make up my anthology... surely a lovely way to start my day :)
    Btw loved this line in particular ** This March brings me some really special numbers. Like a water-colour painting of a sunny sky. Tinged in different shades of bright and happy yellow, and a little blue too. **

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    1. :) Thanks, Seeta. You read me more regularly than I do you. And for that 100k I need to thank you too. :)

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  16. Congratulations ! And here's to many more ! March for me is never a good month - First it meant exams and now the Financial year end. I am glad the month brings such happy times to you !

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    1. Well, plan a few meets with happy people. The month may look up for you then. Come on, the weather is changing, the woollies can finally be boxed up, spring is springing in. Did you see the tiny flowers on the divider when you drove to office? You, my dear, are always in touch with Nature. It's a gift. I am sure March will be a good month for you!

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  17. Congratulations for all these and many more happy occasions in March and beyond! Enjoy the cake :)

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  18. Now, that is happiness! :)

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  19. Congrats :) That was a breezy post!

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    1. Wrote it in a whiff. Glad it was still breezy. I like that word. :)
      Thanks, Parvathy.

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  20. smile for such lovely post :)

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  21. Wow!!! Celebration time for sure...!!

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    1. Yes, Rajesh. Thanks for stopping by!

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  22. Congratulations to you and your Mom ...this month is full of joy and celebrations.. after all its 'springtime'!!

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    1. Spring is the word, Bushra. Thanks a lot!

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  23. Interesting to read your tryst with numbers. Your mom retires! That will be bittersweet for her. For me the number 11 and 2 hold special significance. Hearty congrats on becoming the lakhpati :-D. May your blog make you crorepati soon. Always a delight to read your posts, Sakshi.

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    1. Thanks, Rachna. Always a delight to receive your shabaash too. :)

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  24. wow!!.. congratulations on the blog views.. you so deserve it.. and I loved the post. thinking about my anthology of numbers and I can see march sure has some special of them.. thank you for making me see it .. :)

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    1. :) Thank you for being here off and on. I have always wondered how to address you. Let me just say, thanks! :)

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  25. People say that numbers are boring but the way you have used them they are both interesting and adorable. The number 4 is vital in my dads life, I am actually sitting now with a pencil and paper trying to find mine.

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    1. 4 is special to me, It's the sum total of 1+3, my birth date. :D
      Scribbled some special ones yet? :)

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  26. Here's wishing your mother the very best for future. The storm, the conflict running inside her is understandable. My mother had gone through a similar phase. She has been a teacher for life. She retired as a principal about two years ago but hasn't stopped being a teacher :). She has found different avenues to stay in touch with her passion, at the same time she uses her time enjoying other things life has to offer her. And now she is in a comfortable space in life. So I'm sure your mother will be fine too as she steps into the next phase.

    A very happy b'day to your son in advance. The day sure calls for a double celebration :)

    And congratulations on the massive number count on the hits to your blog. Keep blogging, keep writing..

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    1. Deeps, thank you. The post arose from her impending retirement, and I realised how my 100k stole the show. I will be directing my mother to read your heartfelt comment, a slice from your mother's life. I am sure she will settle into her "new" life with as much passion as ease.
      Thanks for the wishes and for the congrats. Your comment made my day. You really read the post. :)

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  27. Beautiful post dear sakshi. I am new to your blog. My name is saranya iyer. My blogs title is poemsshortstories.blogspot.com

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    1. Hello Saranya. Thank you for stopping by, Will hop over to your space too. :)

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  28. The way you narrate :) can get one to fall in love with numbers ( however bad they were at maths) Congrats to aunty...it's a long period and if is difficult to call it quts...I know cz my mum too has been teaching for the last 25 years! Hv a grand celebration and hv an extra slice of cake from my side :) n congrats on hitting the no. Soon it'll hit a million mark!

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    1. Thanks, Aditi. For all the good wishes and for the 'way you narrate' with a :).

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  29. Superb story on numbers :)
    14 hours of labour pain.... mere pranam sweekar kar lijiye maaji :D Appreciate that ! Not many remember it, not many say it and not many around us really bother to ask, but the one who has experienced it knows....it makes the whole cherubic bundle of joy all the more precious ! :)
    Congrats to your Mom on being a teacher for 22 long years, and I'm sure she'll enjoy her decision to get released from the job and do something else that she loves :)
    and 14th, wow... Happy Birthday to little N :)

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    1. By the way, after the labour pains, it was a 5 min csec. :D Yeah, pranaam sweekar. :D
      Thanks for all the good wishes, Sreeja and for reading me. :)

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