After life

New park benches are sponsored by Netflix linked to Ricky Gervais’s series, in association with a charity tackling mental health issues.

They’ve placed them in different locations in the U.K.

An insightful series dealing with his reactions after the death of his wife. It helped me and it resonates with so many of the impacts of the loss.

We’ve done it too

Manjula’s Mysore had previously installed benches in a museum garden and the park opposite our house.

They’re at it again

Or preparing for another one.
Satish project director with his team, planning or trying to make sense of the firangi’s bizarre ideas

The wonderful team at Mysore City Corporation

Have kindly agreed to the extension of Manjula’s Garden in the park opposite our house.

Here’s the video I provided to make the case

One of Manjula’s benches in the background.

Exhausting but fulfilling Kaveri day.

Kaveri (also anglicised as Cauvery) is named after the holy river, one of the seven holiest in India, a Hindu goddess, who is known for her strength of character and giving nature. As usual the stories vary.

Kaveri and I eventually get a day together but she isn’t dressed for cycling
So I find one of our famous T shirts for her and buy shorts on the island.

The Kaveri river rises in the western ghats in Kodak (Coorg) passing through Karnataka and Tamil Nadu before reaching the Bay of Bengal.

On its journey east it splits to form three islands, one of which is Srirangapatna, featured on our main mycycle tour.

The river helps feed the irrigation systems especially around Srirangaptnam and is source of conflict between the two states.

Some idiot can’t be trusted with a smart phone.
Resting after a hard day, she is over 60
Satish Uncle drives Kaveri (back in her Sunday Best) to Hinkal, in his autorickshaw, as Manjula’s Ambassador has now gone home for a rest.

Kaveri and Manjula’s Mysore

Manjula wished to be reincarnated as a tree as it protected and supported people. I was keen to develop projects that reflected Manjula’s open heart, and kindness. Manjula’s Mysore, our new company, aims to reflect that approach and so Manjula continues to give

The reason why Kaveri has featured so much in the postings is that Manjula’s Mysore (MM) is considering her for an educational scholarship.

We wish to identify a young girl with the potential and to provide opportunities that weren’t available to Manjula.

Meetings held by Kanchana and Sowbaghya with her family, the holiday in Kannur, given by Manjula’s Mysore, and the school holiday activities organised by Stephen has provided ample opportunity to get to know Kaveri.

There are many similarities between Kaveri and Manjula’s early childhood. I’ll not detail them out of respect for Kaveri and her family’s privacy.

We’ve now met all Kaveri’s family and the MM director’s with Stephen’s support consider her eligible for an education scholarship.

We’re now looking into what that will mean in practice with a view to finding an English medium school for Kaveri for the next academic year in 2023.

Footnote

Kanchana is a social worker here in Mysore, Stephen qualified as a social worker in the U.K. in the early 80s. He’s since worked managing grant and developing community projects and partnerships for trusts, government and multi-national corporations.

Stephen is Manjula’s husband.

The Directors of Manjula’s Mysore are Tanuja and Satish friends of Manjula who were instrumental in supporting and remembering her after she died.

Satish and Tanuja, long term friends and supporters of Manjula and our life here in Mysore, together with Tanuja’s husband and daughter.

Sowbhaghya and Sarvesh have helped as part of our wider team.

Rebel three

Eating a lot

But still not enoughD

She’s too thin and her grandmother worries.

We’ve already established a few goody rituals. Stopping for Pani Puri or rice bhath on the street or an ice cream at our usual cafe or as today the whole lot plus roti, dhal and fruit salad back at my house.

She will often ask for a parcel (take out) of what’s leftover her her teenage auntie back at her grandmothers.

A generous foreigner is too good an opportunity to miss and it is summer camp.

She isn’t greedy but is keen to share her good fortune.

Rebel Two

She lives in Hinkal on the other side of Mysore but I get to see her some weekends and during the school summer holiday, when she visits her grandmother, who lives opposite our house.

We’re in the midst of school holidays so she’s here everyday for a few weeks and I’ve introduced ta – ra ta -ra….

Steve’s Summer Camp for Kaveri

We’ve already had walking Lucie, cycling single and tandem, many trips to the cafe, the infamous holiday, games on and off screen, trips to various institutions namely the vets and dentist, outings in the Ambassador, storytelling, shopping for birthday present clothes more and more….

There’s a serious reason for all this related to MAnjula.

It was fun

the survival of the famous twelve, an englishman and his dog

We’re all back home now but what an adventure.

Manjula’s Mysore, our new venture — sponsored our happy holiday — to thank everyone for their help and helping us commemorate Manjula

Enid Blyton anticipated the challenges of five young people holidaying together but eleven of all ages in India! Now that is madness. Who’s idea was that then?

Chera Rocks is a great location. Chosen because it was close to where Manjula and I first went on holiday together but had the capacity and closeness to the beach that we needed. We ate together, could join or not as we preferred and had enough to entertain us without leaving the ‘resort.’

Holidaying as a family let alone a group with no previous experience of being together can be a real challenge but what a wonderful trip it turned out to be. Maybe our angel was watching over us.

Kerala and food, enough said.

the motley bunch say farewell, for now.

some of us sneak an extra night and have the exciting storm and refreshing showers

..

Our own fragment left at last

It was a wonderful trip thanks to all and a big hug for Manjula

Five families going together on holiday together is a challenge anywhere so, the Englishman had to visit beforehand to get the ‘lie of the land’. with a half-hearted attempt at planning. Sally and Shabaz as always were an essential help.

Who’s taken them?

We have a pomegranate thief.

Just as they ripen on the branch someone comes and steals them.

We don’t believe anyone is taking them from our side of the wall or that it’s anyone that works here or relatives of the owner that live on the roof.

No strangers have entered our property. We do have CCTV.

They are however easily reachable from the neighbours path.

It’s a recurring theme. People help themselves to flowers from the public parks. We’ve challenged people with their discreet plastic bags filling them not least from Manjula’s memorial garden.

This morning, Sowbhaghya came across one of the workers in the park who accosted a little girl who was collecting flowers for Pooja. she shouldn’t.

A lesson for Kaveri to learn.