Posts Tagged ‘girl’

MAHARSHI KARVE (18 April 1868 – 09 Nov 1962) – His Life Story in His Own Words – Looking Back – Autobiography

April 17, 2015

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: MAHARSHI KARVE – His Life Story.

Article Link:  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/04/bharat-ratna-maharshi-dhondo-keshav.html

Article also posted below for your convenience to read:

MAHARSHI KARVE
His Life Story in His Own Words

LOOKING BACK By DK KARVE (1936)

 
The Autobiography of Bharat Ratna Dhondo Keshav Karve
 
(Book Review by Vikram Waman Karve)
 
Tomorrow 18 April 2015 is the 157th Birth Anniversary of Bharat Ratna Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve (18.04.1858 – 09.11.1962).
 
I felt that, on this occasion, it would be apt to tell you about his life and work as written by him in his autobiography titled LOOKING BACK published in 1936.
 
Dear Reader, you must be wondering why I am reviewing an autobiography written in 1936.

Well, sometime back, for six years of my life, I stayed in a magnificent building called Empress Court on Maharshi Karve Road at Churchgate in Mumbai.

I share the same surname ( Karve ) as the author.

Also, I happen to be the great grandson of Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve. 

 
But, beyond that, compared to him I am a nobody – not even a pygmy.
 
Maharshi Karve clearly knew his goal, persisted ceaselessly throughout his life with missionary zeal and transformed the destiny of the Indian Woman.

The first university for women in India, SNDT University, and educational institutions for women under the aegis of the Hingne Stree Shiksan Samstha Poona, later renamed Maharshi Karve Stree Shikshan Samstha (MKSSS) Pune, covering the entire spectrum ranging from pre-primary schools to post-graduate, engineering, vocational and professional colleges bear eloquent testimony to his indomitable spirit, untiring perseverance and determined efforts.

 
In his preface, Frederick J Gould, renowned rationalist and lecturer on Ethics, writes that “the narrative is a parable of his career” – a most apt description of the autobiography. The author tells his life-story in a simple straightforward manner, with remarkable candour and humility; resulting in a narrative which is friendly, interesting and readable.
 
Autobiographies are sometimes voluminous tomes, but this a small book, 200 pages, and a very easy comfortable enjoyable read that makes it almost unputdownable.

Dr. Dhondo Keshav Karve writes a crisp, flowing narrative of his life, interspersed with his views and anecdotes, in simple, straightforward style which facilitates the reader to visualize through the author’s eyes the places, period, people and events pertaining to his life and times and the trials and tribulations he faced and struggled to conquer.

 
Dr. Dhondo Keshav Karve was born on 18th of April 1858. In the first few chapters he writes about Murud, his native place in Konkan, Maharashtra, his ancestry and his early life– the description is so vivid that you can clearly “see” through the author’s eye.
 
His struggle to appear in the public service examination (walking 110 miles in torrential rain and difficult terrain to Satara) and his shattering disappointment at not being allowed to appear for the examination (because “he looked too young”) make poignant reading.
 
“Many undreamt of things have happened in my life and given a different turn to my career” he writes, and then goes on to describe his high school and, later, college education at The Wilson College Bombay (Mumbai) narrating various incidents that convinced him of the role of destiny and serendipity in shaping his life and career as a teacher and then Professor of Mathematics.
 
He married at the age of fourteen but began his marital life at the age of twenty! 
 
This was the custom of those days. 
 
Let’s read the author’s own words on his domestic life:
 
 “… I was married at the age of fourteen and my wife was then eight. Her family lived very near to ours and we knew each other very well and had often played together. However after marriage we had to forget our old relation as playmates and to behave as strangers, often looking toward each other but never standing together to exchange words … We had to communicate with each other through my sister … My marital life began under the parental roof at Murud when I was twenty …” 
 
Their domestic bliss was short lived as his wife died after a few years leaving behind a son.
 
“Thus ended the first part of my domestic life”… he concludes in crisp witty style.
 
An incident highlighting the plight of a widow left an indelible impression on him and germinated in him the idea of widow remarriage.

He married Godubai, who was widowed when she was only eight years old, was a sister of his friend Mr. Joshi, and now twenty three was studying at Pandita Ramabai’s Sharada Sadan as its first widow student.

 
Let’s read in the author’s own words how he asked for her hand in marriage to her father – “I told him…..I had made up my mind to marry a widow. He sat silent for a minute and then hinted that there was no need to go in search of such a bride”.
 
He describes in detail the ostracism he faced from some orthodox quarters and systematically enunciates his life work – his organization of the Widow Marriage Association, Hindu Widows Home, Mahila Vidyalaya, Nishkama Karma Math, and other institutions, culminating in the birth of the first Indian Women’s University (SNDT University).
 
The trials and tribulations he faced in his life-work of emancipation of education of women (widows in particular) and how he overcame them by his persistent steadfast endeavours and indomitable spirit makes illuminating reading and underlines the fact that Dr. DK Karve was no arm-chair social reformer but a person devoted to achieve his dreams on the ground in reality.
 
These chapters form the meat of the book and make compelling reading. 
 
His dedication and meticulousness is evident in the appendices where he has given date-wise details of his engagements and subscriptions down to the paisa for his educational institutions from various places he visited around the world to propagate their cause.
 
He then describes his world tour, at the ripe age of 71, to meet eminent educationists to propagate the cause of the Women’s University, his later domestic life and ends with a few of his views and ideas for posterity. 
 
At the end of the book, concluding his autobiography, he writes:
 
“Here ends the story of my life. I hope this simple story will serve some useful purpose”.
 
Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve wrote this book in 1936. 
 
He lived on till the 9th of November 1962, achieving so much more on the way, and was conferred the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters ( D.Litt.) by the famous and prestigious Banaras Hindu University (BHU) Varanasi in 1942, followed by University of Poona [Pune] in 1951, SNDT Women’s University in 1955, and the LL.D. by Bombay [Mumbai] University in 1957.
 
Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve received the Padma Vibhushan in 1955 and the India’s highest honour the “Bharat Ratna” in 1958, a fitting tribute on his centenary at the glorious age of 100.
 
It is an engrossing and illuminating autobiography, written in simple witty readable storytelling style, and it clearly brings out the mammoth contribution of Maharshi Karve and the trials and tribulations he faced.
 
 
Epilogue
 
I was born in September 1956, and I have fleeting memories of my great grandfather Maharshi Karve, when I was a small boy, during our visits, till 1962, to Hingne Stree Shikshan Samstha (now called Maharshi Karve Stree Shikshan Samstha).

My mother tells me that I featured in a Films Division Documentary on him during his centenary celebrations in 1958.

 
Here is a picture of me with my great grandfather Maharshi Karve taken in the year 1958.
 
 

Vikram Waman Karve with Maharshi Karve (1958)

 
It is from some old timers, a few relatives and mainly from books that I learn of his pioneering work in transforming the destiny of the Indian Woman and I thought I should share this.
 
I have written this book review with the hope that some of us, particularly the students and alumni of SNDT University, Cummins College of Engineering for Women, SOFT, Karve Institute of Social Sciences and other educational institutions who owe their very genesis and existence to Maharshi Karve, are motivated to read about his stellar pioneering work and draw inspiration from his autobiography.
 
VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this book review. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved. 
 
Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)
     

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

HOW TO IMPRESS GIRLS and BOYS – Impression Management for Long Term Relationships

March 21, 2015

Original Post written by Me Vikram Karve in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve : HOW TO IMPRESS PEOPLE

http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/03/how-to-impress-people.html.

Link to my original post in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal: 
http://karvediat.blogspot.in/201…

IMPRESSION MANAGEMENT

HOW TO IMPRESS GIRLS and BOYS – Impression Management for Long Term Relationships

WORST IMPRESSION IS THE BEST IMPRESSION
Contrarian Wisdom
By
VIKRAM KARVE

Let me tell you an “apocryphal” story.

This happened 33 years ago – in March 1982 – in Pune.

A girl came to see a boy (for arranged marriage).

The girl was accompanied by her mother (the girl’s father, a Brigadier, was serving in a field area).

Normally – in Maharashtra – the boy goes to the girl’s home (for the customary “kande pohe program”).

But – in this case – the boy had requested the girl to come over to his rather Spartan home.

It was around 10 in the morning – the boy was alone at home – as the boy’s mother had gone for work.

The boy (a Naval Officer) had come to Pune on a week’s leave for “girl seeing” for arranged marriage.

Since the boy was not one of those refined “metrosexuals” – he had not “decked up” for the occasion – but he was dressed in a simple cotton white kurta-pyjama – and he was enjoying a smoke and reading a book – while waiting for the girl to arrive.

The girl and her mother arrived at 10:30.

“You are late,” the boy said, and he asked the girl and her mother to sit down.

The boy served Tea (which he had prepared himself).

Then – the boy lit a cigarette – and he said to the girl, “Let me tell you a bit about myself. As you can see – I smoke a lot. I drink regularly too – around 6 large pegs of rum daily – that is about half a bottle of rum every evening. My career prospects in the Navy are not very bright – I am certainly not ‘Admiral Material’. You are a ‘SODA’ – your father is a big shot in the Army – so you may be used to the comforts and facilities of army life – but in the Navy you get nothing – no batman (sahayak), no transport, no proper housing, no facilities – as you can see I am not a rich man – I just have a scooter – and I do not think I will be able to afford a car on the paltry salary we get in the Navy – you will have to live in some temporary make-shift  shanty – and you will have to do all the housework yourself…”

“You don’t get a house in the Navy…?” the girl asked.

“You do – but there is a huge shortage of married accommodation and the waiting period is 2 years – so by the time we get a proper house, it will be time for my transfer – and it is the same story in every new place – so you must be prepared for a nomadic existence shifting from one temporary accommodation to another…”

“What is ‘SODA’…?” the girl asked.

“Senior Officers’ Daughters’ Association – your Dad is a Brigadier so you are a SODA,” the boy said, “but let me tell you one thing – I am an honest, straightforward and outspoken officer – and so – your chances of becoming a member of SOWA are pretty bleak…”

“SOWA – Senior Officers’ Wives’ Association…!” the girl said.

The boy was happy to see that the girl was intelligent.

“You are very intelligent – and highly qualified – and all your good qualities are listed in your matrimonial profile – but I want to know one thing – and I want an honest answer,” the boy said to the girl.

“What…?” the girl asked.

“What are your faults…? Your bad qualities…? Your weaknesses…?” the boy asked.

“I cannot cook…” the girl began opening up – but her mother gave her a stern look – and the girl stopped speaking.

Observing the situation, the boy said to the girl, “Never mind – we will discuss all that in detail when we meet tomorrow…”

“We are meeting tomorrow…?” the girl asked.

“Why not…? After all, we are getting married – and I am here for a week – so we can go out together a few times – and get to know each other better…” the boy said, extinguishing his finished cigarette and lighting another cigarette.

The girl’s mother was getting increasingly uncomfortable at the way things were going, so she asked the boy, “You have a big beard – are you going to shave it off when you get married…?”

The boy looked at the girl’s mother, and he said to the middle-aged woman, “How does it matter to you whether I keep a beard or not…? Are you going to marry me…? Or is your daughter going to marry me…? But since you have asked – No – I am not going to shave off my beard – I like my beard – and a beard is the sign of a true Naval Officer – so I am going to keep my beard even after marriage – forever…”

The boy looked at the girl, and he said, “See – I told you that I drink heavily, I smoke, and that I have no future in the navy – very poor career prospects – and about the poor quality of life in the navy – but you just told me one thing – that you do not know how to cook – please tell me more about your other faults…”

“We have to go somewhere,” the girl’s mother interrupted – and she brought the ‘interview’ to an abrupt end.

In the evening, the girl’s mother made a ‘trunk-call’ to her Brigadier husband and she said, “What a terrible boy? He is himself saying that he drinks half a bottle a day, he smokes, and ….”

She told him everything.

“The boy said all that…?” the Brigadier asked.

“Yes – the boy hasn’t given us even one reason why we should get our daughter married to him.”

“Maybe that is the very reason why we should get our daughter married to him,” the astute Brigadier said.

The Brigadier met the boy – and he liked him – and so – the girl and boy got married.

The girl was expecting the worst.

But after marriage – the girl noticed the following ‘improvements’ in the boy:

1. Her husband did not drink 6 pegs of rum every evening – he drank around 3 or 4 pegs daily – and only rarely – at parties or with friends – did he drink 6 pegs or more.

2. He did not smoke much too – in fact – he smoked very few cigarettes – he preferred smoking his pipe.

3. She had been expecting to stay in a “jhuggi-jhopri” – but first they lived in the officers’ mess for some time – and then they shifted to quite a decent furnished apartment – which though small – the apartment was modern, comfortable, and located in the prime area of the city.

Though he was not an “angel” by any standards – her husband was not all that bad – as she had thought.

Much later – when she had given up all hope – her husband suddenly gave up drinking and smoking one day.

This happened 20 years after her marriage – and she had never imagined that her husband would give up alcohol and tobacco forever.

Of course – her husband has still not shaved off his majestic beard – but then she has got used to it now – after 33 years of married life.

After reading this “fairy-tale” – some persons may think that this is a true story – and they may even “recognize” some of the characters in this story – but let me emphasize that this is an apocryphal story – the characters do not exist and are purely imaginary – and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

What is important – is the MORAL OF THE STORY.

You must have heard the saying: “First Impression is the Best Impression”

But I say: “Worst Impression is the Best Impression”.

If you give your best impression during your first meeting with someone – then you have to live up to the image you have created.

On the other hand – if you give your worst impression during your first meeting – then there is always scope for improvement.

There are many aspects to your personality – the “Best Side” – the “Worst Side” – with shades of grey in between.

At your very first meeting – if you try and impress someone with your “Best Side” – you have projected your best image – and thus you have no scope for improvement.

In fact – you will get all stressed out keeping up appearances trying to live up to the hyped-up expectations you have created in the other person – and slowly the “veneer” will start peeling off – and the goody-goody façade will crumble.

Dear Reader – you just read the “happy ending” story above.

I know a story where exactly the opposite happened.

There was a girl from a civilian academic background (her parents were university professors).

They lived in a town where there was a large cantonment nearby.

Most of her schoolmates and friends were daughters of Army officers – and the girl was enamored by Army social life.

The girl got a proposal from a Naval Officer.

The girl was under the impression that the life of a Navy Wife was the same as the good life of an Army “Memsahib” which she had observed in the peacetime cantonment.

The Navy boy came to meet the girl.

Believing in the “First Impression is the Best Impression” dictum – the boy showed his “Best Side” – and he “boasted” a bit about himself – he painted a rosy picture of Navy life – instead of telling her the ground reality.

All this created a glorified image and high expectations in the newlywed girl.

But – after their honeymoon – when they reached Vizag – everything came crashing down.

The boy sailed off on his ship – leaving the girl to fend for herself – all alone – in their “B Type” hired house – at the other end of town – far away from the Naval Base.

Feeling totally isolated, the girl went into a depression – and summoned her parents – who came rushing to Vizag – to help their daughter settle down and tackle reality.

As their marriage progressed – the “first impression” that the boy had created by showing his “Best Side” – this rosy first impression started to slowly crumble away as his negative qualities began to emerge.

After many years of marriage – the girl still feels that the boy “cheated” her by portraying a goody-goody false impression of himself and hyped rosy image of Navy life.

My hypothesis of “Worst First Impression” worked in my Navy life too.

I was posted as faculty in a prestigious inter-service training establishment.

My boss was a Commodore from a landlubber branch who had never met me before.

However – my “spoken reputation” had somehow reached him via the grapevine.

For a month or so – I noticed that he was quite wary of me – he treated me coldly and he kept me at arm’s length.

Then – one evening – at a party – when he was feeling quite happy after a few drinks – he sidled up to me – and he said, “Actually – I have realized that you are quite a good officer…”

Taken aback, I said to him, “Come on, Sir – of course – I am a good officer – why did you think otherwise…?”

“I had heard so many wicked things about you – that you are a difficult officer – but I actually find you to be so good…” the Commodore said – and later – his wife told me that I was his favourite officer – and he trusted me the most among all officers.

So – Dear Reader – whenever you meet someone for the first time – for matchmaking – for dating – at the workplace – for any long term relationship – beware of the dictum: “First Impression is the Best Impression” – and don’t get too carried away trying to make the “best impression” – since you may find it difficult to live up to such a ‘perfect’ image in later life.

When you meet someone for the first time – never try to “impress” anyone – just be your natural self – in fact – show a bit of your darker side – so that there is always “scope for improvement” later.

And for those of you who are going in for an “arranged marriage” – when you meet your “prospective spouse” for the first time – the first question you must ask him (or her) is: “Tell be about your weaknesses and your faults…”

Remember: “Worst Impression is the Best Impression”.

There is always scope for improvement if you project your “worst” impression

But there is no scope for improvement if you project your “best” impression – in fact, there is always pressure to live up to the “perfect” image you have created – and ultimately, this mismatch will cause stress and distrust in your relationships.

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Disclaimer:
1. This story is a spoof, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.


Posted by Vikram Karve at 3/20/2015 04:16:00 PM

EMPOWERMENT OF WOMEN IN INDIA THROUGH VOTEBANK POLITICS

December 2, 2013

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: WOMEN’S VOTEBANK – A Distant Dream?.

Link to original article in my academic and creative writing blog:

http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2013/12/womens-votebank-distant-dream.html

Article also posted below for your convenience to read:

WOMEN’S VOTEBANK – A Distant Dream?
WOMEN CENTRIC VOTE BANKS FOR EMANCIPATION OF WOMEN IN INDIA
Musings
By
VIKRAM KARVE
ELECTION DAY IN GIRINAGAR – An Apocryphal Story By Vikram Karve
This happened a few years ago when I lived at a place called Girinagar near Pune.
“I want the day off,” Sushila, our maid, asked my wife.
“Why?” my wife asked.
“We have to vote. Today is election day,” she said.
“That’s good,” I said.
I was quite surprised at Sushila’s eagerness to vote because Sushila was totally illiterate.
Yes, she lived just a few kilometres away from a modern city like Pune (often called the “Oxford of the East”) – yet, like so many others, she could not read or write.
But her keenness to vote indicated what a vibrant democracy we were.
“Who are you going to vote for?” I asked, in jest.
She told me a symbol – “I am going to vote for XXX symbol,” Sushila said.
“But why?” I asked.
WE have decided,” she said.
WE” meant her husband.
Apparently, her husband had gone for a “meeting” and it was decided that the entire neighbourhood will vote for XXX symbol.
“So you vote for XXX symbol every time,” I asked her.
“No, last time we all voted for YYY symbol,” she said.
“Why?” I asked.
“Because “WE” had decided,” she said.
Of course, she did not know anything about the ideology of the  political parties to which the symbols XXX and YYY belonged.
It was none of her business.
Before every election, it was the men who had a meeting and decided who to vote for and the women dutifully complied.
(Of course, the men had a “leader” who guided them in these matters)
Like Sushila’s husband, most of the men in that area were drunkards who lived off their wives’ earnings.
But all that did not matter.
In the patriarchal society that prevailed, the women dutifully obeyed their men, even if the men were good-for-nothing drunkards.
So, in Sushila’s family of 7 voters (she, her husband, her two sons and daughters-in-law, and unmarried daughter), all would be voting for the symbol XXX which had been “decided”.
Added up, it was quite a large number of votes in the locality, and since they all of them voted en-bloc for a certain “symbol” it was quite a sizeable “votebank”.
A few more such solid votebanks could ensure victory in the election, as the victory of the XXX candidate proved.
Around 3 in the afternoon we saw Sushila standing near our gate.
“Have you voted?” I asked her.
“No,” she said.
“Voting time will be over soon. Why didn’t you vote in the morning?” I said.
“They haven’t come to take us,” she said.
A friend of mine who had come over and was hearing the conversation said, “Don’t you know? Someone has to come and take them to the polling booth in a vehicle – and then give them some inducement, here it is mostly liquor – only after that will they vote.”
After some time I saw a van arrive to take all them for voting.
In the evening we saw Sushila’s husband and her sons lurching in a drunken manner on the road, as were most men.
It was obvious that liquor was flowing freely on election day (though strictly speaking it was a “dry day”)
At night, when Sushila came to work, we saw tears in her eyes.
She said that her husband and her sons were drunk – and her husband had thrashed her as he always did when he was drunk, and one of her sons had thrashed his wife too.
“See,” my wife said to Sushila, “you voted for the person who gave liquor to your husband and sons – you all women voted for those who are causing you harm.”
What an irony!
Why do women vote for someone who causes them more harm than good?
IS IT POSSIBLE TO HAVE A WOMEN’S VOTEBANK ?
Isn’t it a similar story everywhere?
We see media reports of male chauvinistic politicians who make derogatory remarks about women from time to time.
Is it possible for them to get elected unless women vote for them?
After all, women comprise 50% of the electorate.
Though it is a secret ballot, obviously, most women do not vote independently and freely for that candidate or party who may best serve women’s interests.
In our patriarchal culture it is the men who decide who to vote for and women comply meekly.
That is why votebanks are male-centric.
And that is why many politicians have no qualms about denigrating the dignity of women by making tasteless comments, because they are confident that women will still vote for them.
In a democracy like India, the only way women can emancipate themselves is to organize themselves into a formidable women’s votebank.
A women’s votebank will have 50% of all voter strength.
The women’s votebank will be larger than all other votebanks put together and it will be the women’s votebank which will decide the results of the elections.
Women have to emancipate themselves, not depend on men to do so, especially when democracy has given them the opportunity to do so.
I wonder why women politicians are not taking the initiative to consolidate women’s votebanks to address and mitigate women’s issues?
For example, in the place I mentioned, alcoholism was a major issue which was affecting most womenfolk.
If all the women had got together and decided to vote en-bloc for that candidate who promised in his manifesto to shut the liquor shops and introduce prohibition of alcohol in the area, would it not have been better for the women?
A strong women’s votebank will ensure that political parties include women’s issues like safety, security, gender equality etc in their manifestos and try to implement them otherwise the women may throw them out in the next election, or better still have their own candidate.
I feel that the best solution to achieve betterment of women in a secular democracy like India is to have a strong women’s votebank cutting across caste, creed, linguistic and religious lines and including all women.
 
We have all sorts of votebanks.
 
Isn’t it high time for a gender based women’s votebank which can be a game changer in Indian Politics?
 
VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 
Disclaimer:
All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
NB
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)
 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 
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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse – his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/vikramkarve
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramkarve@hotmail.com

Twitter: @vikramkarve
      

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Maharshi Karve – Autobiography : LOOKING BACK by DK KARVE : The Autobiography of Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve : Book Review

April 18, 2013

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: LOOKING BACK by DK KARVE : The Autobiography of Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve : Book Review.

Click the link above to read my original post in my journal

Review also posted below for your convenience

 

LOOKING BACK By DK KARVE (1936)

The Autobiography of Bharat Ratna Dhondo Keshav Karve
 
(Book Review by Vikram Karve)
 
Tomorrow 18 April 2013 is the 155th Birth Anniversary of Bharat Ratna Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve (18.04.1858 – 09.11.1962).
 
I felt that, on this occasion, it would be apt to tell you about his life and work as written by him in his autobiography titled LOOKING BACK published in 1936.
 
Dear Reader, you must be wondering why I am reviewing an autobiography written in 1936.

Well, sometime back, for six years of my life, I stayed in a magnificent building called Empress Court on Maharshi Karve Road at Churchgate in Mumbai.

I share the same surname ( Karve ) as the author.

Also, I happen to be the great grandson of Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve. 

 
But, beyond that, compared to him I am a nobody – not even a pygmy.
 
Maharshi Karve clearly knew his goal, persisted ceaselessly throughout his life with missionary zeal and transformed the destiny of the Indian Woman.

The first university for women in India, SNDT University, and educational institutions for women under the aegis of the Hingne Stree Shiksan Samstha Poona, later renamed Maharshi Karve Stree Shikshan Samstha (MKSSS) Pune, covering the entire spectrum ranging from pre-primary schools to post-graduate, engineering, vocational and professional colleges bear eloquent testimony to his indomitable spirit, untiring perseverance and determined efforts.

 
In his preface, Frederick J Gould, renowned rationalist and lecturer on Ethics, writes that “the narrative is a parable of his career” – a most apt description of the autobiography. The author tells his life-story in a simple straightforward manner, with remarkable candour and humility; resulting in a narrative which is friendly, interesting and readable.
 
Autobiographies are sometimes voluminous tomes, but this a small book, 200 pages, and a very easy comfortable enjoyable read that makes it almost unputdownable.

Dr. Dhondo Keshav Karve writes a crisp, flowing narrative of his life, interspersed with his views and anecdotes, in simple, straightforward style which facilitates the reader to visualize through the author’s eyes the places, period, people and events pertaining to his life and times and the trials and tribulations he faced and struggled to conquer.

 
Dr. Dhondo Keshav Karve was born on 18th of April 1858. In the first few chapters he writes about Murud, his native place in Konkan, Maharashtra, his ancestry and his early life– the description is so vivid that you can clearly “see” through the author’s eye.
 
His struggle to appear in the public service examination (walking 110 miles in torrential rain and difficult terrain to Satara) and his shattering disappointment at not being allowed to appear for the examination (because “he looked too young”) make poignant reading.
 
“Many undreamt of things have happened in my life and given a different turn to my career” he writes, and then goes on to describe his high school and, later, college education at The Wilson College Bombay (Mumbai) narrating various incidents that convinced him of the role of destiny and serendipity in shaping his life and career as a teacher and then Professor of Mathematics.
 
He married at the age of fourteen but began his marital life at the age of twenty! 
 
This was the custom of those days. 
 
Let’s read the author’s own words on his domestic life:
 
 “… I was married at the age of fourteen and my wife was then eight. Her family lived very near to ours and we knew each other very well and had often played together. However after marriage we had to forget our old relation as playmates and to behave as strangers, often looking toward each other but never standing together to exchange words … We had to communicate with each other through my sister … My marital life began under the parental roof at Murud when I was twenty …” 
 
Their domestic bliss was short lived as his wife died after a few years leaving behind a son.
 
“Thus ended the first part of my domestic life”… he concludes in crisp witty style.
 
An incident highlighting the plight of a widow left an indelible impression on him and germinated in him the idea of widow remarriage.

He married Godubai, who was widowed when she was only eight years old, was a sister of his friend Mr. Joshi, and now twenty three was studying at Pandita Ramabai’s Sharada Sadan as its first widow student.

 
Let’s read in the author’s own words how he asked for her hand in marriage to her father – “I told him…..I had made up my mind to marry a widow. He sat silent for a minute and then hinted that there was no need to go in search of such a bride”.
 
He describes in detail the ostracism he faced from some orthodox quarters and systematically enunciates his life work – his organization of the Widow Marriage Association, Hindu Widows Home, Mahila Vidyalaya, Nishkama Karma Math, and other institutions, culminating in the birth of the first Indian Women’s University (SNDT University).
 
The trials and tribulations he faced in his life-work of emancipation of education of women (widows in particular) and how he overcame them by his persistent steadfast endeavours and indomitable spirit makes illuminating reading and underlines the fact that Dr. DK Karve was no arm-chair social reformer but a person devoted to achieve his dreams on the ground in reality.
 
These chapters form the meat of the book and make compelling reading. 
 
His dedication and meticulousness is evident in the appendices where he has given date-wise details of his engagements and subscriptions down to the paisa for his educational institutions from various places he visited around the world to propagate their cause.
 
He then describes his world tour, at the ripe age of 71, to meet eminent educationists to propagate the cause of the Women’s University, his later domestic life and ends with a few of his views and ideas for posterity. 
 
At the end of the book, concluding his autobiography, he writes:
 
“Here ends the story of my life. I hope this simple story will serve some useful purpose”.
 
Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve wrote this book in 1936. 
 
He lived on till the 9th of November 1962, achieving so much more on the way, and was conferred the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters ( D.Litt.) by the famous and prestigious Banaras Hindu University (BHU) in 1942, followed by University of Poona [Pune] in 1951, SNDT Women’s University in 1955, and the LL.D. by Bombay [Mumbai] University in 1957.
 
Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve received the Padma Vibhushan in 1955 and the India’s highest honour the “Bharat Ratna” in 1958, a fitting tribute on his centenary at the glorious age of 100.
 
It is an engrossing and illuminating autobiography, written in simple witty readable storytelling style, and it clearly brings out the mammoth contribution of Maharshi Karve and the trials and tribulations he faced.
 
 
Epilogue
 
I was born in 1956, and have fleeting memories of Maharshi Karve, during our visits to Hingne Stree Sikshan Samstha as a small boy.

My mother tells me that I featured in a Films Division Documentary on him during his centenary celebrations in 1958.

 
Here is a photo of me with my great grandfather Maharshi Karve taken in 1958
 
 
Vikram Karve with Maharshi Karve

It is from some old timers and other people and mainly from books that I learn of his pioneering work in transforming the destiny of the Indian Woman and I thought I should share this.
 
I have written this book review with the hope that some of us, particularly the students and alumni of SNDT University, Cummins College of Engineering for Women, SOFT, Karve Institute of Social Sciences and other educational institutions who owe their very genesis and existence to Maharshi Karve, are motivated to read about his stellar pioneering work and draw inspiration from his autobiography.
 
VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2013
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved. 
 
NB:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2013. All Rights Reserved

Did you like reading this book review?
I am sure you will like all the 27 stories in my book  COCKTAIL an anthology of Short Fiction.
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:

http://www.flipkart.com/cocktail-vikram-karve-short-stories-book-8191091844?affid=nme
http://www.indiaplaza.in/cocktail-vikram-karve/books/9788191091847.htm
http://www.apkpublishers.com/books/short-stories/cocktail-by-vikram-karve.html

COCKTAIL ebook
If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:
AMAZON

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005MGERZ6
SMASHWORDS
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/87925

 
Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
If your are a Foodie you will like my book of Food Adventures APPETITE FOR A STROLL. Do order a copy from FLIPKART:
http://www.flipkart.com/appetite-stroll-vikram-karve/8190690094-gw23f9mr2o

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse – his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/vikramkarve
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramwamankarve@gmail.com

Twitter: @vikramkarve
      

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

CRIME AGAINST WOMEN IN INDIA – a Solution – WOMEN AS A VOTEBANK

December 22, 2012

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: WOMEN AS A VOTEBANK.

Click the link above and read the original article in my journal.

The article is also posted below for your convenience:

 

WOMEN AS A VOTEBANK

WOMEN AS A VOTEBANK
Part 1
Food for Thought
By
VIKRAM KARVE
In India, crime against women is on the rise.
Though rapes and sexual molestation cases are reported almost everyday in the media, it is the recent horrendous gang rape in Delhi that has evoked widespread public concern about the abysmal state of safety and security for women. 
But will anything really change once the protests die down?
I feel that there is only one way to improve the situation.
Women must vote as a single “votebank”.
Yes, women must resort to votebank politics.
During elections politicians try to woo various votebanks based on caste, religion and language.
votebank (also spelled vote-bank or vote bank) is a sizeable bloc of voters who vote en bloc as a group for a political party or candidate during elections.
Votebanks are based on caste, religion or language.
Most political parties resort to votebank politics.
If you read any election manifesto you may find a number of promises made to the various “vote banks”.
However, Women’s Issues may not be given priority in the election manifesto of any party.
This is because women are not considered as a “votebank”.
Women comprise half the electorate and the vote share of women is 50 percent.
This women’s vote share of 50% is much more than any caste combination or religious community or linguistic group which are considered as votebanks.
Women must understand the power they wield in a democracy.
Women voters must realize the value of consolidating their votes into votebanks.
Just imagine what will happen if all women vote together as a single votebank.
The “women votebank” will comprise 50% of the votes and this numerically powerful women’s votebank will sweep away all other caste, religious and linguistic votebanks.
Once women become a formidable vote bank, it is women who will determine the result of the election.
This is especially true in our “first past the post” multiparty multi-candidate system, where a candidate with just 30% of the votes can win in constituencies where there a large number of candidates.
Similarly, in the prevalent multi-party system, a political party which gets much less than 50% of the total votes sometimes forms the government. On some occasions parties with a vote share of just 30% votes have managed to form a government.
In this scenario, the “women’s votebank” comprising 50% of the total votes will be the decisive factor in elections.
In such a situation, politicians and political parties cannot afford to neglect this powerful “women’s votebank”.
If this happens, politicians will have to address women’s issues on priority if they want to win the elections and come to power in a democracy.
Women need to ask themselves as to why they vote for candidates who insult women and commit crimes against women.
Will it not be better to elect candidates who uphold the dignity of women and promise to work towards the emancipation of women.
This is possible in a democracy only if all women unite at the time of elections and voteen bloc as a single group for the best candidate.
Thus, if women want their problems to be solved by the political class, all women must come together and create a “women votebank”. 
Yes, all women, irrespective of caste, creed, religion or linguistic group, whether belonging to majority or minority communities, rural or urban, must unite themselves into a numerically influential votebank which can determine the results of elections.
To start with, “women’s votebanks” can be formed at the constituency level and then amalgamated to the regional and national level into a cohesive mighty invincible election-winning votebank.
Women must clearly state their gender-specific concerns like safety, security, discrimination, rising crime and domestic abuse due to increasing alcoholism, sexual harassment, rape, molestation, eve-teasing, social taboos and other local problems faced by women which need attention and alleviation.
Women must tell politicians which specific issues they want addressed on priority and demand results in a time bound manner.
Political Parties and Candidates must prioritize mitigation of women’s issues with a proper time-bound plan for implementation in their election manifesto. In fact, every political party manifesto must clearly state what is going to be done for women, at the national, regional and constituency level.
At all levels, the “women votebank” should vote for that candidate or party who includes clear-cut strategies to tackle women’s issues and redress problems and concerns pertaining to women in the manifesto and demonstrates maximum promise to deliver in a reliable, effective and time-bound manner.
It is only when women unite to become a formidable cohesive “women’s votebank” will politicians will start giving importance to women’s issues.
Politicians who insult the dignity of women will find it difficult to get elected.
Politicians who are responsive to women’s issues will get elected.
It may sound strange. But it seems that it is the much-maligned democratic tool of “votebank politics” which may actually lead to the emancipation of women in this country.
 
 
VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
Did you like this blog post?

I am sure you will like the 27 short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:
http://www.flipkart.com/cocktail-vikram-karve-short-stories-book-8191091844?affid=nme
http://www.indiaplaza.in/cocktail-vikram-karve/books/9788191091847.htm
http://www.apkpublishers.com/books/short-stories/cocktail-by-vikram-karve.html

COCKTAIL ebook
If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:
AMAZON
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005MGERZ6
SMASHWORDS
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/87925

Foodie Book: Appetite for a Stroll
If your are a Foodie you will like my book of Food Adventures APPETITE FOR A STROLL. Do order a copy from FLIPKART:
http://www.flipkart.com/appetite-stroll-vikram-karve/8190690094-gw23f9mr2o

 
About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse – his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/vikramkarve
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramwamankarve@gmail.com

      

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

A Naval Yarn – A FLEET AUXILIARY CALLED SEMAPHORE SIGNAL – A Naval Yarn from THE TALES OF MY HALCYON NAVY DAYS – FLEET AUXILIARIES AND SEMAPHORE SIGNALLING

November 1, 2012

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: A FLEET AUXILIARY CALLED SEMAPHORE SIGNAL – A Naval Yarn from THE TALES OF MY HALCYON NAVY DAYS – FLEET AUXILIARIES AND SEMAPHORE SIGNALLING.

Click the link above to read the original story in my creative writing journal

The Story is also given below for you to read and for your convenience:

A FLEET AUXILIARY CALLED SEMAPHORE SIGNAL – A Naval Yarn from THE TALES OF MY HALCYON NAVY DAYS – FLEET AUXILIARIES AND SEMAPHORE SIGNALLING

DELIGHTFUL MEMORIES OF MY HALCYON NAVY DAYS
By
VIKRAM KARVE
Whenever you have the blues, and you feel melancholic and depressed, there is a guaranteed way to lift your spirits, enliven you and cheer you up.
Just hark back into the past, down the timeline of your life, reminisce about your halcyon days and recall a happy incident, an amusing event, a hilarious anecdote, a comical side-splitting experience – think about that funny episode, relive the jovial experience in your mind, and sure enough, instantly, there will be a smile on your lips and cheer in your heart, and you will be filled with happy vibes and you will feel bright and breezy.
Now that I have “retired” into oblivion, this is exactly what I do, whenever I feel glum and gloomy.
I close my eyes and, in my mind’s eye, I mentally go back in time, almost 35 years back in time, to the late 1970s, and reminisce about my halcyon navy days, the happiest days of my life, and let delightful memories of those glorious navy days perambulate in my brain.
This morning, as I delved into my halcyon navy days, floating over my time line, I suddenly remembered that unforgettable episode about the “Fleet Auxiliary” who I had nicknamed “Semaphore Signal”.
Let me tell you about it. Do tell me if you enjoyed reading the story, and I shall spin some more yarns for you.
I enjoy spinning yarns, some true, spiced up with lots of salt and pepper, and some apocryphal.
Like I said, I am going to spin a few naval yarns for you.
Now, Dear Reader, you’ve got to remember one thing. 35 years ago it was an all-male navy, where bawdy jokes, ribaldry and profane language was the order of the day, and concepts like gender-sensitivity were unheard of. So let me reminisce and spin a few yarns for you to enjoy, no offence meant to anybody – I just want to make you laugh and drive away your blues, and mine too. I am sure you have a good sense of humour and you will enjoy these yarns with a pinch of salt.
 
 
DELIGHTFUL MEMORIES OF MY HALCYON NAVY DAYS – Part 1
A FLEET AUXILIARY CALLED SEMAPHORE SIGNAL
A Naval Yarn
By
VIKRAM KARVE
Disclaimer: Please read this apocryphal short story only if you have a sense of humour. This is a spoof, pure fiction, a fantasy, a figment of imagination. So first convince yourself that you have a sense of humour and only then read the yarn, take it with a pinch of salt, and have a laugh. And yes, this story is for adults only, so if you are a kid please skip this post and go onto something academic in nature …
“FLEET AUXILIARIES”
We had returned to port after a long sailing and in the evening I decided to visit my course-mate Horny on his ship which was parked just ahead of us. Unlike mine, his was a small ship, and the atmosphere was totally informal, with just a Snotty and a sailor leisurely manning the gangway.
I identified myself, told them who I wanted to meet and started walking inside when the Snotty said, “Sir, just a moment, he is busy right now, someone is there with him in his cabin.”
“Busy? Okay. I’ll come later. Just tell him I had come,” I said, and started to walk away.
“Sir, why don’t you speak to him?” the Snotty said and dialled Horny in his cabin and held out the phone to me.
“Hey, don’t go,” Horny said, “just come down to my cabin.”
Horny was waiting for me outside his cabin, and I could see that he was genuinely happy to see me.
“So nice to see you after so many days. Come inside,” he said, opening the door of his cabin.
I was taken aback by what I saw in his cabin.
A woman was lying on his bunk.
On the side-table there was a bottle of my favourite Premium Scotch Whisky.
I was not surprised at seeing the girl – Horny was a known Casanova famous for his peccadilloes.
What surprised me was the bottle of whisky, for Horny was a strict teetotaller.  
Horny introduced me.
The girl made no effort to get up.
She continued to lie down on the bunk in her supine position and smiled at me.
I smiled back.
Then Horny pointed outside and said to me, “Why don’t you sit in the wardroom for some time? We’ll finish off our business and join you in a few minutes. The bar, the fridge, everything is open, so just help yourself to a drink and whatever you want.”
It was just six in the evening, so I poured myself a beer, switched on the TV and relaxed in the wardroom waiting for Horny and his consort.
I was two beers down by the time Horny joined me in the wardroom.
“Girlfriend?” I asked him.
“No,” he said, “She’s just a fleet auxiliary.”
(Let me digress a bit and tell you the difference between a Fleet Auxiliary and a “Fleet Auxiliary”– the former Fleet Auxiliary is a support ship, like an oil tanker, a supply vessel, a depot ship, or a hospital ship, which supports the main fleet, whereas the latter “Fleet Auxiliary” is a moniker, a nickname given to a girl who “supports” the men who man the fleet by having a good time with them and help them quench their carnal passions. It is a no strings attached relationship. Of course, there may have been be a bit of “barter” sometimes where she gets to drink the best booze and gets some gifts like an expensive perfume or some exquisite Swiss chocolates. Let me tell you that in those golden days of the license, quota, permit raj, prized and coveted foreign goodies were was not available in the domestic market and we got them duty-free on board, and a naval officer was quite high up on the social ladder. Regrettably, the advent of liberalisation and globalisation changed everything, and nowadays, a naval officer is no longer the crème de la crèmeof society anymore, because today, money determines your status, and businessmen are the new role models. And as far as “fleet auxiliaries” are concerned, it looks like they have disappeared from the fleet and found greener pastures, because when I asked a young Sub about it a few days ago, he seemed totally clueless).
“Oh. A new Fleet Auxiliary? But she looks quite a Plain Jane,” I remarked.
“Never a judge a chick by her looks,” Horny said, “I can tell you from my own experience. Most of those gorgeous chic beauties who look like sex bombs turn out to be damp squibs, but these prosaic looking Plain-Jane types are terrific. Like this one. She’s real great. Just three drinks and she’s ready for action.”
“Three drinks?” I asked.
“Yes, just three large pegs of neat whisky and she is all primed up – ready for action.”
“Really?” I said, incredulous.
“The first drink, she lies horizontal. The second one, she puts her legs up by 45 degrees. And the moment she has her third drink, her legs go straight up to vertical position and she is ready for action.”
“Like a Semaphore Signal,” I said.
“Semaphore Signal? You mean the flags?”
“No. No. Not Naval Semaphore Signalling. I am talking about Railway Semaphore Signalling,” I said.
“Railway Semaphore Signalling?” he asked, confused.
“Yes. Railway Semaphore Signalling. To be precise your passionate “fleet auxiliary” can be described as a three position Multiple Aspect Upper Quadrant (or MAUQ) Semaphore Signal.”
“Hey, stop the mumbo jumbo and explain to me in simple language,” Horny said.
Now, I am no great raconteur, so I picked up a pencil and piece a paper, drew some pictures and explained the salient aspects of Semaphore Signalling. If you want to know what I told Horny, have a look at the picture below.
                Multiple Aspect Upper Quadrant (MAUQ) Semaphore Signalling
The images above are from the Indian Railways Fan Club (IRFCA) Website Post on Signalling Systems.  Indian Railways Fan Club (IRFCA) is a hobby group for discussing all aspects of railways in India. You you may read the post on semaphore signals by clicking the url link http://www.irfca.org/faq/faq-signal2.html
Let’s look at the red coloured signal first.
The arm at horizontal position means “stop”, inclined upwards at 45 degrees means “caution” and the arm in the vertical position means “all clear” and the train can proceed.
Now look at the yellow coloured semaphore signal.
I think, that in the context of this story, the yellow coloured signal seems more apt – STOP, ATTENTION, PROCEED.
Now just imagine that the legs of the girl (our “fleet auxiliary”) in place of the arm of the signal.
First Drink – Legs Horizontal – STOP.
Second Drink – Legs inclined upwards by 45 degrees – ATTENTION
Third Drink – Legs Vertical – PROCEED
On hearing my explanation, Horny burst out laughing and we both laughed for a long time.
We were still laughing when “Semaphore Signal” joined us in the wardroom. She had freshened up. We talked. I liked her. Though she was quite chubby and ordinary looking, she had a very friendly smile and she exuded a sort of affable charm.
Life moved on, Horny moved on, I moved on, and, of course, the “fleet auxiliary” called “Semaphore Signal” moved on, though I did see her a few times circulating around in the fleet.
Many years passed, and I had forgotten all about this episode when I unexpectedly ran into “Semaphore Signal” while browsing in a bookstore.
I recognized her at once.
She was the very same “fleet auxiliary” I had nicknamed “Semaphore Signal”.
Now, so many years later, she had turned a bit plump, but otherwise she looked the same chubby girl with a sincere, friendly smile which radiated the same charming warmth.
I smiled at her.
She did not smile back.
In fact, she totally ignored me, showing absolutely no trace of recognition, and then she turned and walked towards the exit of the bookstore.
She walked out of the bookstore and stood in the foyer.
I followed her with my eyes and positioned myself so that I could clearly see her.
She took out her mobile phone from her purse, dialled a number, held the cell-phone near her ear and spoke briefly.
Then she walked into the food court of the mall and sat down on a vacant table.
I kept down the book I was browsing, walked out of the bookstore, into the spacious food court and sat down on a table from where I could see her clearly.
She knew that I was stalking her but she avoided looking directly in my direction.   
Suddenly a small girl came running and ran into her arms. The girl was followed by a man who smiled at her and sat down opposite her.
They were talking, maybe deciding what to eat – mother, father and daughter – a happy family.
I noticed that “Semaphore Signal” exuded the bliss of domesticity.
I felt happy for her – a “fleet auxiliary” so happily settled down in family life.
It was time for me to leave.
I got up, looked at her for the last time and started to turn.
“Semaphore Signal” looked in my direction, gave me a fleeting glance, a brief smile of recognition, and then she looked down at her daughter and started talking to her.
As I walked away after the encounter I felt happy for “Semaphore Signal”.  She was one of the fortunate “fleet auxiliaries” who had put her past behind, moved on into a new world and settled down into a happy married life – the bliss of domesticity.
Others were not so lucky.
Some could not move on in life and persisted with their ways till age overcame them and the only future the could look forward to was to live a life of a lonely spinster, an old maid, with only reminisces to think about. 
A few managed to “trap” a gullible naval officer into marriage, but many such marriages ended in disaster, since they remained in the same environment and did not escape to a new world. Much as they tried, they could not prevent the shadow of their past life from haunting their present lives.
I don’t know why, but whenever I see a woman drinking I remember “Semaphore Signal” and a smile comes to my lips.
I really don’t know if there is a connection between alcohol and promiscuity, but then as my friend Romeo would boast: “Give me a woman who drinks and I can get her into bed” – and he proved it.
But that is another story, one more yarn I will spin some day. 
Dear Reader: Please give me some feedback. Tell me, did you like this yarn? Do you think I should compile my naval yarns into a book? In today’s world where “Campus Romances” are in vogue, will anyone read such a book on memoirs of my halcyon navy days? Do tell me, for I have many yarns to spin and stories to tell.
By the way, the Railways have replaced Semaphore Signals with Electric Light Signals and I don’t think you will see a traditional Semaphore Signal anymore. Doesn’t matter. The next time you see a railway signal, or a traffic signal, and as you watch it changing colour, do remember this story and have a laugh.
Keep Laughing and have a Happy Day.
VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

Did you like reading this story? 
I am sure you will like all the 27 stories in my recently published book of short stories COCKTAIL
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:
http://www.flipkart.com/cocktail-vikram-karve-short-stories-book-8191091844?affid=nme
http://www.indiaplaza.in/cocktail-vikram-karve/books/9788191091847.htm
http://www.apkpublishers.com/books/short-stories/cocktail-by-vikram-karve.html
COCKTAIL ebook
If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:
AMAZON
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005MGERZ6
SMASHWORDS
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/87925

Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
http://www.flipkart.com/appetite-stroll-vikram-karve/8190690094-gw23f9mr2o

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a large number of fiction short stories, creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse – his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/vikramkarve
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramwamankarve@gmail.com

 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

A DAUGHTER IS SOMEONE ELSE’S PROPERTY – Dikri To Parki Thapan Kahevay – WHY PARENTS WANT SONS, NOT DAUGHTERS – TRAGEDY OF THE GIRL CHILD – PARKI THAPAN – PARAYA DHAN

April 13, 2012

Click the link below and read the article in my journal

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: WHY PARENTS WANT SONS, NOT DAUGHTERS – GIRL CHILD – PARKI THAPAN – PARAYA DHAN – Dikri To Parki Thapan Kahevay.

Click the link above and read the article in my journal and hear the lovely song by Lata Mangeshkar from the Gujarati Film Parki Thapan (1978)

 

HAPPY PUPPY DAY – a STORY by Sherry Karve

March 24, 2012

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: PUPPY DAY STORY by Sherry Karve.

Click the link above and read the PUPPY DAY Story in my Journal

THE NEW YEAR EVE PARTY – My Favourite Short Stories Part 80

December 26, 2011

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: THE NEW YEAR EVE PARTY – My Favourite Short Stories Part 80.

Click the link above and read the story in my journal

Happy New Year

Vikram Karve

Who is the Woman with Cat Eyes? DON’T DELVE TOO MUCH – My Favourite Short Stories Part 77

December 19, 2011

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: DON’T DELVE TOO MUCH – My Favourite Short Stories Part 77.

Click the link above and read the short story in my creative writing journal

Regards

Vikram Karve

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