October Newsletter 2020

An October day is characterized by colourful trees and a gentle breeze, a picturesque scene for photographs. Fall is a time of change, change in weather, change in the colour of leaves, and change in the behaviours of animals. As Mahatma Gandhi once said, “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on October 2nd of 1869. This year we celebrated the 151st anniversary of Gandhi Jayanti. Gandhiji not only was an advocate for India’s freedom but is also an idol for freedom fighters around the globe.

Photo Courtesy- Nimil Peethambaran

Like nature, we must also be ready to accept the change that COVID-19 brings along with it. In order to pull through these tough times, we must not only have a healthy body but also a healthy mind. October 10 was World Mental Health Day, which is a day that is set aside to help raise awareness for mental health. Due to COVID-19, mental health problems have increased. Everybody has different ways of handling stress and anxiety. Here are some ways you could try to reduce stress.

  • Listen to music
  • Read a book or poem(October 1 was National Poetry Day)
  • Do some breathing exercises
  • Participate in community services and activities
  • Do something you enjoy

Have a Happy Halloween and don’t forget to get your flu shots!


Thanksgiving

– Ravikumar Hariharan

The strong winds gushed past my ears. The waves of the mighty ocean, as though hesitantly, kissed my feet and quickly retreated. As I walked along the beachside, even the sky made his intention clear bursting out into huge streaks of lightning. Slowly I came to rest on the beach sands, with my eyes viewing the distant horizon.

I came all this way, to see the golden sunset into the depths of the ocean. But somehow even the sun, eluded me as he hid himself behind the darkest of the clouds. Neither did the moon appear, even if he did, I wouldn’t have known, for the sky itself was turning itself into a big moon, painting itself grey. I felt a raindrop on my eyelids, slowly easing its way down through my cheeks. I dragged my eyes from the distance to view the things happening around me, the beach sands, that hugged each other to make a beautiful whole, the water that hissed and roared, but made a cool and soft impact as they touched my feet. I looked at all those sand particles that glued itself to my feet, and would never let go.

I looked at the children who jumped up and down, dancing in glee. Some were playing with the waves, and the waves like a true friend, always entertained and never let them down. Though very vague against the dull dark background, I could still see a host of birds fly across dark firmament. The waves continued to wet my feet, bringing with it sand that made a thicker layer on my skin. It was a long 14 years since I stepped onto the beach sands, and for all the craving, these sand particles will not let go of me!!! I looked at the vast ocean of life and thanked him for these humble offerings, for these moments of happiness and fortune, he had selflessly offered me. I was seated a fair distance away from him, but thanks to him, he still never forgot to let those cool waves kiss my feet, and pour in those sand particles onto my skin. This ocean of life has always been kind to me, I thought. Now was my chance to give something back to him, I got up from my place and moved closer to the waters. Bent down onto the beach sands. I wrote on them a big “Thank you”.To this big ocean of life, this is all I can give!!! And here came the waves and imbibed my message, and as if like a token of love, swept cool waves onto my feet.

 I started on my way home, dragged myself away from those waves, which every time tried to lure me into coming back by gushing in with greater strength and covering greater distances. When I was a fair distance from the shore, I slowly wiped off the dust from my feet. Thanked all the sweet and fortunate moments life had offered me and got ready to face the new world around me. The sky around was still dark, and frightening. I knew that the way ahead in life would be tough. I gave a final peep into the horizon and saw the full moon now smiling at me. The sky was slowly clearing, and the moonlight now fell on the water giving it a beautiful silvery tint. With this newfound hope, I started walking, in search of myself, in search of the newer moments life would bring. But looking back at the waters, I said to myself and to them.”Bye, I will come again to see you another day !!!”


Youth Corner

My White Water Rafting

– Niraj Rajeev

I was doing river rafting in West Virginia “This is going to be great,” I thought to myself. When we got to the registration area they said to sign a waiver. I was going with a family friend. My dad signed the form, and we got our equipment, a life jacket, a helmet, and a one-sided paddle. Then we got on a bus and went to the place that we were going to get dropped off at. We filled the raft with air, and placed it on the water and got on with five other people. When the guide said, “Give me two”, we had to paddle two times. We were off, I felt excited and scared. Then we got to the first rapid and cold water splashed into the boat and, “Oh god hold on Niraj, hold on” thought to myself. On the third rapid the guide said you can swim and I said “Yes!” When I jumped into the river, cold water grabbed me. “Have I gone mad?” I thought to myself and I swam the rapid. It was fun and the day ended. We went to the house where we were staying. It was an exciting and adventurous experience.  


Meals on Wheels Volunteers

October 11, 2020: Jayabalan Achuthan,Deepa Jayabalan and Adithya Jayabalan
Completed Route: # V1600

October 25, 2020: Sudha Warrier, Syam Ayyar and Govi Warrier
Completed Route: # V1801

Thank you, we greatly appreciate your work!


COMA’s Christmas Celebration 2020

Yes, Christmas is around the corner and we are still indoors with limitations to gatherings, but that does not restrict us from having fun & celebrations. COMA is excited to bring another virtual event to celebrate Christmas – “COMA’s Christmas with the gifted!” on Saturday, December 5th late evening.

Though we will miss the usual Christmas feast and photo with Santa, we will have some special guests to be part of our celebration. The program will be a blend of pre-recorded events and some marvellous Live Performances by renowned artists from Kerala along with gifting a charity for a noble cause.

Stay tuned for more information and do reach out to coma.officials@gmail.com for any questions.

September 2020 Newsletter

Fall is up on us and like spring and summer, we are inside most of the time wishing we were outside enjoying the beautiful fall days, not too hot but not too cold, witnessing fall colors, sipping pumpkin spice lattes, football and most of all desperately hoping for a 100% effective vaccine!

But till that happens, Corona doesn’t have to take all the fun out of everything we want to do. If the past two seasons have taught us anything it is that the pandemic is here for a while, but we can still enjoy some activities-it’s just that they will look little different, with social distancing, virtual get-togethers and masks (‘wearing is caring’!!).

As we move into October we hope you all stay safe, enjoy the outdoors, pumpkin carving, trick or treat, watching football sitting on your couches with a beverage of choice and of course the array of articles we have for you in this edition of the newsletter.

– Smitha Sasindran

Reflections & Ramblings #8: Fall 2020

-Hari Narayanaswamy

The calendar said, Fall is here
But I demurred, not for me
Fall had arrived in Spring for me
Winter hastened on Summer nights

The pandemic winds blew very hard
We held our breath and hid in nests
Hunkered down behind four walls
Shivering in fear, silent in prayer

We know for sure it will pass one day
Though not sure when the day will come
Are the winds slowly dying down, Or
Taking a breather to blow more harsh?

I should be glad that Fall is here, for
Empathetic nature shall join our plight
Together shall we wait for Spring
When sky will brighten and we fly out!

Lost Innocence

-Ravikumar Hariharan

The road whorled like a serpent. The curtain of dawn was falling over the day’s events. My eyes were pivoted on the huge rock on the top of the hill, the permanent milestone for all my evening walks. The cold evening breeze tottered along with me, giving me reliable company. The sky was a mosaic of colors. Grey clouds dispersed between patches of blue and red along with dapples of gold. With every step I took, the hill seemed steeper. I dragged myself on.

My mind traced the panorama of events I had walked through. Every event that flashed was unique, each adding its own color and beauty to the happenings just as the colors of this evening sky .Painted together made an even beautiful whole. Then there were the grey clouds that pierced through the colorful happenings…moments of regret??of pain? Every look at those black patches made them look bigger.  I briefly reflected on those small incidents in my life, the moments of despair, frustration and regret that had kissed my life in the yesterdays. The frustrations from those incidents reminded me of the overpowering ego that sometimes conquers and rules the invincible self. The moments of despair reflected my expectations that had transgressed beyond. Regrets evoked in me the reality that I am sometimes a helpless soul, a mere puppet in the hands of destiny.

The sky turned purple, slowly dissolving into the darkness and I lost myself in it. My mind like the dark firmament above was starting to paint itself grey. I continued my journey up the hill, The rock on top of the hill was no longer visible in the brooding darkness. The street lights cast their long shadows on the road, in the process also wetting my path with their faint yellow light.

Suddenly as I turned to my right, I found a boy running by my side. As the street light fell on his face, I saw the infectious smile that played on his lips. At the speed at which I was walking, he had to run to keep my company. But he was bustling with enthusiasm, and made me forget that my legs were tired. I gave him a smile and asked him…”You seem to be very happy…Why??”. “Why shouldn’t I be??”, his face seemed to say. I gave him a sarcastic smile as if to convey “You have just started your life, kid, You are yet to know the harsh realities that make up this life. Do you know, that life is not all that easy, and that you cannot always keep smiling like are doing now??” The smile on his face grew wider. He kept running, as though my words had hardly reached his ears. I don’t know what was happening to me in his presence, but I was starting to blurt out my mind. “You know…human Beings are by nature selfish. And many a times your self esteem and dreams are trampled over by insensitive minds that cannot see a world beyond theirs. Every person here is involved in a mad race, a race to satisfy ones ego with every step that is taken.” The wind carried my voice to every place except for the boys ears. He was singing a rhyme as he happily ran up the hill ,and the rhyme fell to my ears thus:

“Twinkle twinkle little star..How I wonder…what (ALL) u want???”!!

He was enjoying every moment without involving himself with my emotional upheavals. Once in a while he would stop to pluck a flower or two along the way, and he would say with the most innocent smile “For my friends..” Undeterred by his indifference for my words, I continued my lament. “You know one must never be emotionally attached to any person or thing…Attachment breeds expectations, expectations leads to over-expectations and finally ends in frustrations and pain.”. I continued to realize that my words were reaching deaf years and that the boy was fully absorbed in the totality of the moment. In his zig zag run, he would sometimes bump into me and flashing that naughty infectious smile, he would continue running.

“The boy smiled and smiled from his heart; Brought out an innocent smile from my part, Have I smiled similarly ever before, No trickery, no lies, All innocence to the fore ??”

The faint smile that appeared on my lips did little to wither away the storm that was brewing in my heart. However hard I tried to think of something else, my mind like a cyclone swirled and swirled and came back to the same point..my frustrations..my pains…uh… His singing of rhymes continued, and fell on my ears thus:

“Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall(of expectations ???)  Humpty Dumpty had a great fall!!!”

I was starting to lose my temper…Who do u think I am talking to…these trees???” I yelled out at him. The happy go lucky boy seemed to not hear it. My legs had traversed a fair distance and though I could not see the rock in the pitch darkness, My mind told me that I was getting closer to my destination. I shook my head in frustration and cried out “Oh God, I am living this life all wrong!!!”

We were nearing the top of the hill, and the rock I had set out to reach was now slowly becoming visible in the faint street light. I slowed down my steps, but the boy kept running, and before I could realize, he was slowly dissolving himself into the darkness that lay ahead of me. I called out to him…”You dint tell me anything about yourself…What’s your name??How old are you???”A cute little voice yelled back from the dark…”Dint you realize??I am Ravi…and I am 6 years old!!!”As I started my journey down the hill, I could not help but smile to myself…”. Now I knew where I was going wrong”!!

How to mix Alcohol : Balancing Risk

-Sreejith Menon

Alcohol, mallayalis favorite word in the dictionary. I hope you will think about this article next time you say cheers.

Alcohol effects both your mind and body. Here are some of the effects it can have on your health.

Muscle Loss – Alcohol increases the chances of muscle loss if you’re in a calorie deficit diet. So, even if you manage to fit your beer calories into your diet, they still might have a more negative effect as compared to other calories consumed.

Fat Gain: When you consume alcohol, most of your cells prefer to burn it as a fuel source before they switch back to burning their usual mixture of carbs and fats. This means that your body is not burning the other calories as efficiently, and they are slightly more likely to be stored as fat. If your goal is weight loss, then alcohol is likely to slow down your progress.

Impaired Recovery: Alcohol directly reduces the rate of recovery after a training session. It means that the harder you train and the more recovery demands you make on your body, the more pronounced the harmful effects of alcohol will be. Athletes, in particular, are likely to be most affected since recovery plays such an important role in their performance.

Effect on Sleep: Sleep is the elixir of life, and plays a critical role in facilitating weight loss, muscle gain, and general wellness. Alcohol disrupts the normal sleep cycle and makes it more difficult for someone to reach levels of deep sleep.

Hydration Issues: Alcohol consumption causes dehydration. Alcohol is a diuretic, so be prepared to make a LOT of trips to the bathroom.

I bet, no one wants to hear alcohol is bad and just STOP drinking. So here is what you can do to reduce some of its effects on your health.

1. Drink in moderation: Don’t consume more than 2-4 drinks at a time. Also restrict the number of times you drink to may be once in two weeks.
2. Avoid “kaddies”: High-calorie snacks with alcohol are a big no-no. Stay away from them.
3. Mixers: Use a calorie-free beverage. Water and plain soda are preferable.
4. Avoid drinking too late: Maintain a sufficient gap between happy hours and bed time
5. Less is Better: An obvious one – try to limit alcohol intake as much as possible
6. The Other Liquid Of Life: Remember to stay hydrated. Drink water between drinks and after you’re done.

These are just guidelines that can reduce the adverse effect of alcohol. But keep in mind that there will likely be a trade-off with your health. Include alcohol in your lifestyle only if you are okay with that.

As always, drink responsibly!

Cheers!!

References –
1.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24748461/
2.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20575805/
3.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/10840864/
4.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19079280/
5.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22254055/

Scuba Dive

Adithya Menon

I love adventure and thrill in life, so I decided to get certified in Scuba diving.
To get started we enrolled with Captain Rick who runs the dive school in Westerville. He is a US Army Veteran and was a NAVY Sea Cadet Scuba Instructor.
Getting certified with NAUI (National Association of Underwater Instructors) was no fun, as it took me to school learning about buoyancy and air pressure. Had to clear online exam which I did great with the help of fun videos and online learning experience.
Next was to be show the stamina to the diving instructor and to achieve it, had to swim 9 laps without stopping in Westerville aquatic club, and also did many dive sessions in 10 feet pool.
I was all set and flew to Florida with my mom for getting both of us certified in Scuba diving. We did our open water dive in a huge lake and 3 dives 40-70 feet in Atlantic Ocean, this was all when I was 10 year old in 2017.
The whole process took 6 months to be called certified Scuba Diver.

Long story short the experience I am talking about here was diving in WV at Summersville Lake few weeks back. The lake is formed by a rock-fill dam (Summersville Dam) on the Gauley River, south of Summersville in Nicholas County. It is the largest lake in West Virginia, with maximum depth of 327
feet.
I did two dives here on a beautiful day going down 40 feet. The experience was different than my firstdive in Florida 3 years back. Florida was ocean with salt, yet many fishes and corals. Summersville wasrocky clear lake with beautiful views.
Planning for more dives this New Year in Florida. If you are interested, Captain Rick does discovery divesessions, to help you for the path to get certified as Scuba Diver.
Here is link to my Video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NA1x8UCNaZs

Sky Dive

Deep Jayabalan

I have a very long bucket list, and one of the things was to Skydive.
My first dive was in Sep 2016, in Columbus OH. The best part of this dive was Jay (Husband) planned to give me birthday surprise to fulfill one of the long pending bucket list. My mom who was 56 year old then, and had acute Rheumatoid also decided to dive with me. What else to ask for in life; when you have such an inspiring and motivating family.Then Sep 2020, Jay (Husband) and few of my friends decided to give me birthday gift again to Skydive in Chicago. Best part was the friends who were willing to dive with me as my birthday gift had acute Acrophobia (Fear of heights). The experience both times cannot be explained, however I will try to put few words here:
In the hangar we put on our harnesses and helmets and were given instructions. After signing a few papers we were on our way to the plane! There were few of us in a very small space, some getting certified, some like me for the adrenaline rush.
Suddenly we were 14,000 feet above the ground. Its tandem skydive, which means tied to the instructor, still has few protocols to be followed; like making sure legs are folded behind before jumping off the plane, body in arch shape during free fall etc.,

Slowly the people in plane started to jump, and then it was my turn, and here we go with free fall of 240-290 km/hr. for 60 sec (This is the thrill of the skydive; with strong wind gushing on the face, and just falling freely down from the height of 14,000 feet).And then the parachute opens and everything suddenly slows down. We floated peacefully towards
earth, leaving the beautiful clouds behind us.
This was definitely one of the chilling and most exhilarating experiences of my life. The sensation of falling from so high is amazing and the adrenaline rush is crazy every time it’s done.
The sense of achievement of being able to fulfill the bucket list, not just once but twice feels just so good.
Thanks for reading my experience and am happy to answer questions, if planning for your dive.
Here is my YouTube channel with both the videos.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCC9aga2b1eTAj4fkXeu8RLQ

Meals on Wheels volunteers

September 27, 2020: Subin, Simple Subin, Kevin Subin and Trisha Subin

Completed Route #V1801

September 13, 2020: Praveen Kumar, Priya Praveen and Gauri Praveen

Completed Route #1600

 Huge Thanks to the volunteers!

Aug 2020 newsletter

Ullathu kondu Onam pole – an age old saying reminding us that no matter what, we Malayalees celebrate Onam with as much or as little as we have. This year’s Onam has taken this thought to new heights with COVID taking the sheen out of Onam. For many, the high voltage festival of pookalam, puli kali, boat race, kasavu dresses and yummilicious sadya has been reduced to an indoor game. But COVID has not been able to dent the malayalee spirit. This keeps us ticking and kicking. Most of us may have a story of loss or agony to share but we are ready to welcome our erstwhile ruler KING MAHABALI

– Nithya Rajagopalan

ഓണ സദ്യ

വത്സൻ പാലിക 

തുമ്പ മലരിന്റെ ചന്തമുണർത്തുന്ന

ചൂടുള്ള കുത്തരി ചോറിൽ

അൻപോടെ അമ്മ വിളമ്പി, നറുമണം

എങ്ങും പരത്തും നറുനെയ്!

പൂക്കളത്തോളം മനോഹരം തന്നെ

തൂശനിലയിലെ വട്ടം

ഒക്കെ കഴിച്ചിട്ടുവേണം സുഖമായി

ഉച്ച മയക്കത്തിലാഴാൻ!

എത്രയോ കാലമായ് ഉള്ളിലൊതുക്കിയ

മോഹമാണീ ഓണ സദ്യ!

“ഇത്രയുമായാൽ ഇനിതുടങ്ങാം”, എന്ന്

മുത്തശ്ശി മെല്ലെപറഞ്ഞു

പച്ചടി, കിച്ചടി, കാളനവിയൽ, പിന്നെ

അച്ചാറുകൾ നാലു കൂട്ടം

കായ വറുത്തതും ശർക്കര ചേർത്തതും

ആകെയൊരാഘോഷമത്രെ!

നൂറ്റെട്ടുകൂട്ടം കറികൾക്ക് തുല്യമാം

ഇഞ്ചിക്കറി ചിരി തൂകി!

ഏറ്റവും വേഗത്തിലെല്ലാം കഴിക്കണം രണ്ടിനം

പായസമുണ്ട്‌ പിന്നാലേ!

അമ്മതൻ കൈപ്പുണ്യം തൊട്ടുണർത്തി,

നാവിലെന്നോ മറന്ന രുചികൾ!

എല്ലാം ഇവിടെ തൊടിയിലുണ്ടാക്കിയ

പച്ചക്കറികളാണത്രെ!

ഓർമ്മയിൽ പൂത്തുലഞ്ഞു, ബാല്യ-

കാലത്തെ ഓണ ഘോഷങ്ങൾ

കൂട്ടുകാരോടോത്തു ചെയ്ത കുസൃതികൾ,

ഏറെ രസിച്ച കളികൾ

‘ഇത്തിരിക്കൂടെകഴിക്കൂ!’, അമ്മ

വാത്സല്യമോടെപറഞ്ഞു

ഓർമ്മകൾക്കൊപ്പം മധുരമാം പായസം

ആസ്വദിച്ചേറെക്കഴിച്ചു! 

മുറ്റത്തു കുട്ടികളോടിത്തിമിർക്കുന്നു,

പൊട്ടിച്ചിരികളുയർത്തി

മൂവാണ്ടൻ മാവിന്റെ കൊമ്പിലെയൂഞ്ഞാലിൽ

ആടി രസിക്കുവാൻ മോഹം!

കുട്ടികളെയുമവളെയും ഇക്കുറി

കൊണ്ടുവരാമായിരുന്നു

നാട്ടിലെ ഓണവും സദ്യയും കൂട്ടവും

 ഒക്കെയുമിഷ്ടമായേനേ!

മാവിന്ചുവട്ടിലേക്കേറേയുത്സാഹത്തിൽ

ആടുവാനായ് ചെന്ന നേരം

കുട്ടികുസൃതികൾ, ആരോ ഒരാളെന്നെ

മെല്ലെപിറകോട്ടു തള്ളി

പിന്നെ അശരീരി പോലെയേതോ ശബ്ദ-

മെന്റെ ചെവിയിൽ പതിഞ്ഞു

‘വേഗമെഴുന്നേറ്റ് വന്നേ, നേര-

മെട്ടരയായീട്ടോ  മാഷേ!’

‘ഓണമല്ലേ, നല്ല സദ്യ വേണം,

ഒട്ടൊക്കെ വാങ്ങിവരേണം’

ശ്രീമതി തട്ടിയുണർത്തിയതോ, സ്വപ്ന-

മായിരുന്നോ കണ്ടതെല്ലാം!

മാധുര്യമൂറുന്ന സ്വപ്ന ലഹരിയിൽ

ഓടിയൊളിക്കാൻ ശ്രമിക്കേ

ഓണമൊരുക്കുവാനുള്ള തിടുക്കത്തിൽ

വീണ്ടും അശരീരി വന്നു 

‘ഫ്രോസൺ’ ആണെങ്കിലും, ചേന വേണം,

കൂട്ടുകറിക്കത് ‘മസ്റ്റാ’

സാമ്പാറി ‘നോഥന്റീസിറ്റി’ വരുത്തുവാൻ

വേണം മുരിങ്ങക്കയൊന്ന്

കേരളപപ്പടം ഇല്ലെങ്കിലോ, ലിജ്ജത്തി-

ലാകട്ടെ ഈവര്ഷമോണം

ഉപ്പുമാങ്ങ മറക്കേണ്ട, നാരങ്ങയച്ചാർ

കുറച്ചുണ്ട് ഫ്രിഡ്ജിൽ

പായസം ബുക്കുചെയ്യാൻ വൈകി അയ്യോ! 

ഉണ്ടാക്കുവാനോ പ്രയാസം 

പാലടയാണോ എളുപ്പം? എങ്കിൽ

പഞ്ചസാര മറക്കൊല്ലേ

ഉണ്ണിക്ക് സ്വാദോടെഉണ്ണാൻ ‘പാസ്ത’

വേണം, അതിനുള്ള ‘സോസും’

മോൾക്കിന്ന്  ലഞ്ചിന്നൊരല്പം സ്വാദ്

കൂട്ടാൻ ഒരു പായ്ക്ക് ‘ലേയ്സും’

പൂക്കളും വേണം കുറച്ചു, നല്ല

പൂക്കളം മുൻപിലൊരുക്കാൻ 

വാടാത്തതായാലെളുപ്പം  പിന്നെ

‘ക്ലീനിങ്’ സൗകര്യമല്ലേ!

വേഗം പുറപ്പെടൂ, വൈകിപ്പോയാൽ

ഊണും അതുപോലെ വൈകും

പോയിവരുമ്പോഴേക്കും ‘ബ്രേക്ക്

ഫാസ്റ്റ്’ റെഡിയാക്കി വെക്കാം

ഏറെ തണുത്ത പാലിൽ കുതിർ-

ന്നാറിയ ‘കോൺ ഫ്ലെക്സി’നോർമ്മ

ഊഷ്മള സ്വപ്നങ്ങളെല്ലാം തല്ലി-

യോടിച്ചിതയ്യോ, എണീക്കാം!

ഇല്ലെങ്കിലോണവും പോകും, ഓർമയിൽ

ഒന്നും എഴുതി വെക്കാതെ!

‘ലിസ്റ്റ് റെഡിയാക്കി വെക്കൂ, ഉടൻ

ഫ്രഷായി ഞാനിതാ വന്നു’!

Onam Nostalgia

Smitha Nishant (lives in Worthington, OH with her family. She is a native of Trivandrum, India.)

Onam is one festival that I really look forward to every year. When I setup my calendar at the start of the year, it’s the date I mark down first even before I do birthdays and anniversaries. It’s the festival that I take great pride in as a Malayali as it celebrates equality, oneness, and prosperity for all.

Growing up, Onam holidays marked the end of first term at school and the dreaded Onappareeksha, and the start of a much anticipated 10-day long vacation where cousins and other family from far and near would get together at my maternal grand-mother’s (ammachy as I called her) house. Ammachy would stock up on banana chips, murukku, unniyappam, achappam, ariyunda – not just for the perpetually hungry grandkids but also to serve to the truck loads of relatives who would come visit around Onam time. My youngest uncle who was a college student at the time would put up swings for us and join us in the myriad of games we played. My mom and aunts would be busy in the kitchen with my ammachy while all of us kids would play in the grounds all day. Evenings were reserved for board games, 28, and carroms. The highlight of the avadhikkaalam was the delicious sadhyas ammachy, my aunts, and mom would prepare for Uthradam and Thiruonam, but as kids we were partial to the first Onasadhya as we would be served non-veg side dishes also, such as ammachy’s legendary mutton curry or fried chicken. She made the best tasting ada-pradhaman in the whole world (in a big uruli) that we would smash a banana into and savor with our hands from the sadhya leaf. My father being an NRI would miss most Onams but my uncles made up for his absence showering me and my sister with onakodies and other gifts.

I grew up in Trivandrum at a time when it still retained the charms of a small town despite being the capital city. I loved watching the hustle and buzzle of Onam shopping in the Chalai bazaar from my school bus as it took me back home on the last day of school before the vacation started. Onam vacations saw a lot of the immigrant residents travelling back to their native places, but it also brought in folks who descended to the capital to partake in the “Onam vaaraakhosham”. Kerala Tourism’s weeklong Onam celebrations were an integral part of my childhood. There were arts and craft fairs in the Putharikandam maithanam, and if we were lucky, the circus would come to town as well. Trees and government buildings from East Fort to Kowdiar Square would be lit up for a fortnight. I’d eagerly wait for that special evening my uncle would announce that he was going to take all of us kids to watch it – jam packed into the back of his old Ambassador, we had such fun enjoying the illuminations and festivities on both sides of the road. If we were lucky, he’d make a stop at the Kanakakunnu Palace and get us cotton candy and vanilla ice cream – special treats when we were growing up. The memories are so etched in my mind, it even brings back the scent of freshly mowed grass in the palace grounds where we would run around and play games. Uncle would then take us all to watch an Onam release movie – “My Dear Kuttichaathan” was one such unforgettable Onam release.

Trivandrum Onam celebrations culminated with a grand parade (khoshayaathra) complete with colorful floats, dancers, marching bands, roller skaters, and the Mounted Police unit of the Kerala Police. There were years I participated in the parade as part of my school’s marching band, and one year I particularly remember marching fully drenched as it rained at the start of the parade.

Growing up in the United States, I know my son Rohan has a completely different Onam experience, primarily around Malayalee association Onam celebrations and getting together with friends for Onam sadhyas. In the land of plenty, vanilla ice cream cups and cotton candy are no more desirable than pancakes or waffles. I am happy to keep it that way as I am a firm believer that your Onam experiences should be representative of your background and not artificially created to match with the stereotypes. To each, their own. 

Onam is often described as a celebration of a glorious past. That is precisely what it is to me, a reminder of a childhood full of joy, love, family get-togethers, and the simple pleasures of life. Wishing you all a very happy Onam!

പൊലിഞ്ഞുപോയ സർഗ്ഗവാസനകൾ

Unnikrishnan Nair

സുഹൃത്തേ, ഓണത്തിന് കുറച്ചെന്തെങ്കിലും Newsletter നു വേണ്ടി എഴുതാമോ എന്നുചോദിച്ചപ്പോൾ, സാധിച്ചില്ല എന്നൊറ്റവാക്കിൽ പറഞ്ഞാൽ അതു താങ്കൾക്ക് വിഷമമാകുമോ എന്നുവിചാരിച്ചു…

താങ്കളുടെ മനോമുകരത്തിൽ തെളിഞ്ഞപോലെ ഞാനൊരു നല്ല കലാ സാഹിത്യ അഭിരുചിയുള്ള വ്യക്തിയൊന്നുമല്ല എന്നറിയിക്കട്ടെ. സ്കൂൾ കോളേജ് കാലഘട്ടത്തിൽ എന്തൊക്കെയോ കുത്തികുറിച്ചിരുന്നു, കൂടാതെ നാടകം/സ്കിറ്റ് എന്നൊക്കെ പറഞ്ഞു കുറച്ചു കസർത്തു കാണിച്ചു എന്നൊഴിച്ചാൽ, വെറും നാട്ടുമ്പുത്തു കാരനായ പച്ചയായ മനുഷ്യൻ. മാത്രമല്ല കലാലയ ജീവിതം അവസാനിച്ചപ്പോൾ അവയെല്ലാം ഉപേക്ഷിക്കുകയും ചെയ്തു. ഒരുപക്ഷെ സഹപാഠികളുടെ ആദരവിനുവേണ്ടിയോ അതോ ഗുരുക്കൻമാരുടെ പ്രശംസ നേടാനുള്ള ചടുലവും സ്വാർഥവുമായ ആഗ്രഹംകൊണ്ടായിരുന്നോ അതെല്ലാം ചെയ്തത് എന്നോർമ്മയില്ല. ചെറുപ്പത്തിന്റെ വിവേകമില്ലായ്മയായേ ഇപ്പോൾ അതിനെ കാണുന്നുള്ളൂ.

സുന്ദരമായ കലാലയ ജീവിതം കഴിഞ്ഞു ജീവിത യാഥാർഥ്യങ്ങളെ അഭിമുഖീകരിച്ചു മുന്നോട്ടുള്ള പ്രയാണത്തിൽ കലയും സാഹിത്യവും കൂടെ കൊണ്ടുപോകാൻ സാധിക്കില്ലെന്നുള്ള യാഥാർഥ്യം നേരത്തേ മനസിലാക്കിയിരുന്നു.

ജീവിതത്തിന്റ സായം സന്ധ്യയിലെത്തിനിൽക്കുന്ന ഈ അവസരത്തിൽ ഒന്നു തിഞ്ഞുനോക്കിയാൽ, അന്ന് കൂടെയുണ്ടായിരുന്ന സർഗ്ഗവാസനകളൊക്കയും തുരുമ്പിച്ചുപോയി എന്നുപറഞ്ഞാൽ അതിശയോക്തിയാകില്ല. സത്യംപറഞ്ഞാൽ കയ്യിലുണ്ടായിരുന്നത് നഷ്ടപ്പെടുകയും, എന്തിനുവേണ്ടി ഓടിയിരുന്നുവോ അതു നേടിയതുമില്ല എന്ന യാഥാർഥ്യവും മനസിലായി. എങ്കിലും അല്ലലുമലച്ചിലും ഇല്ലാതെ ഇവിടെവരെയെത്തിച്ച ജഗദീശ്വരനോട് നന്ദി പറയാൻ മാത്രമേ ഈ അവസരത്തിൽ മനസുവരുന്നൊള്ളു.

ഓണാശംസകൾ…

Kids corner

The adventures of Smack-in-Cheese : Part 2

Hello my mysterious friends once again! If you still remember, my name is smack-n-cheese and my friends are nap-n-cheese and snack-n-cheese. 

This is our Quick Recap:

I got really hungry because snack-n-cheese ate everything in the house including the table and the fridge. Nap-n-cheese for some reason woke up really really quick jumping on me while I was trying to sleep. He told, it was ‘getting eaten day’ and he said he will jump on me until I become a red-hot-pepper.

Now let us start the story 

Snack-n-cheese said, luckily it is Christmas and I ate all the Christmas presents except for this black and white shovel which your great great great great great grandpa gave and which your grandpa found in the garage near your house. He says it is used to dig mystical things but I don’t believe him. He says, it will turn golden if it finds something mystical.

I said, great!! Now I can dig for mystical food, maybe it has a mystical flavor. 

Smack-n-cheese goes to the back garden and digs and digs and digs until the shovel turns golden. He finds a golden and green hot dog box with a dragon sign on it. He opened it and found a Hot Dog with the best Hot dog bun ever made and it came with ketchup and mustard. Smack-n-cheese said, this the best breakfast I have ever seen.

Snack-n-cheese sees the Hot Dog and tries to grab it from the box but a golden and yellow force field activated and Snack-n-Cheese bounced off and fell ten feet away. Then nap-n-cheese saw it and said, maybe to take the Hot Dog you have to sleep well. Nap-nCheese tried to grab the Hot Dog also but the force field activated again and he bounced off 15 feet away.

Smack-n-cheese said, I think you have to be the person who dug the Hot Dog out of the ground to take it. When Smack-n-cheese grabbed the Hot Dog, his hands went right through the force field and was able to grab the Hot Dog. When he ate it, Hot Dog’s rained from the sky and everyone had the best breakfast ever. The End!
P.S. The mystical box came from China and that is why it had a Dragon Sign

Drawing

Sahana Ravikumar

Meals on Wheels volunteers

August 23, 2020: Saira Nawaz, Razvi Razack         Completed Rt 1801

August 9, 2020: Joseph Abraham, Nancy Joseph, Joshua Abraham, Rachael Abraham               Completed Rt 1600

  Huge Thanks to the volunteers!

*** Note from EC Team ***

Dear COMA Families,

With extreme happiness ,we  would like to convey our big thank you to all who joined us to kick start our Onam in Columbus .We really appreciate the effort and hard work you put  to make this event a grand success. Everyone extended their helping hand in one way or other and showed their true camaraderie and spirit.

A big shout out to all participants and their technical teams for putting together a digital frenzy ONAM!!!! We are thankful to our “Maveli thampuran” for putting an effort to show up in Columbus in the middle of this pandemic.

Let’s keep our community vibrant and active as always!!

Regards

EC 2020.

July 2020 Newsletter

It is already the end of July, and summer is halfway done. July is mostly known for Independence Day, a day to remember how America gained independence. The Declaration of Independence was a key document in declaring independence from Britain. The Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4th, 1776, causing July 4th to become the day for Independence Day. But July 4th wasn’t elected a federal holiday until 1941. This year, Independence Day has been very different. Normally we would visit kith and kin, go see fireworks, and try to enjoy one of the few long weekends we get in a year. But those traditions have been thrown off track this year because of the ongoing pandemic. But do not worry, you can still have fun. You can video call your family and friends and still enjoy the time you have off. In case you do go outside don’t forget to wear a mask, social distance, and stay safe.


A history of the COMA Bike Club

-Nish Nishant

(About the Author : Nish is a COMA regular who is the founder of the COMA Bike Club. He lives in Worthington Ohio, and is originally from Trivandrum Kerala.)

Biking, unlike other fitness and workout routines, is an easy exercise to get into – all you need is a bike. The COMA biking club currently boasting around 50 members is one of our association’s many niche groups. The first unofficial group rides began in June 2016 with just 4 members (yours truly, Pramod Pudhiyattil, Vikas Gopal, and Arun Davis). We continued to do that in a sporadic fashion till 2018 when COMA began its active initiatives focusing on outdoor events. In early 2018, Deepak Warrier reached out to me and asked me if we could formalize the club, and we started the WhatsApp group at that time. A big boost to the club was when Ashish and Sangeetha Muthiraparambath joined, and started posting about their marathon rides which tremendously inspired the group. Until then we were mostly a “10-15 miles and back home” sorta club. The Olentangy trail became the unofficial COMA trail as that was conveniently located for most folks and is also one of the better trails in the area. 

This year, the lockdown had a pretty significant impact in increasing the activity levels and participation of the club. People were stuck home and could not go to their gyms, tennis courts, and badminton leagues. Folks like Pradeesh Puthiyattil with their multi-sport background joined and encouraged folks to push themselves beyond their current limits. As a result, more bikers started joining us, many of them investing in pretty good equipment, and now it’s not unusual for the bike club to do 30/40/50 mile rides on a consistent basis. Ashish and Sangeetha Muthiraparambath have been the main drivers behind the group exploring new trails, while Pradeesh has challenged everyone to move from casual riders to serious amateurs, and Pramod in his typical fashion has become the de-facto technical guru for everyone, from bike tune up tips to gear changing skills. 

Biking is a fitting group activity in these days of social distancing, and the opportunity to meet friends and acquaintances once a week is a boon. It’s also an adventure of sorts, the trails often offering exquisite views into the scenic Ohio landscapes. Many of these trails do not have direct road access other than through the trail, so you get to see unexplored sights and lots of picture postcard photo points. After a week of hard work, a 4 hour ride can be extremely relaxing to both mind and body. I would encourage you all to give this a shot, just reach out to the EC team if you are interested. 

Reflections & Ramblings #7: On Culture

– Hari Narayanaswamy

I don’t know about you but I find the word ‘culture’ very intriguing. Just like many of you, I am also part of many ‘cultural organisations’ and attend many ‘cultural programs’ (of course on Zoom these days). I am expected to have elements of a ‘unique corporate culture’ at work, ‘Hindu culture’ based on religion, ‘Oriental or Indian culture’ based on birth, ‘Tamil Brahmin culture’ as part of heritage, ‘Malayali culture’ per my upbringing, ‘Western or American culture’ per my citizenship. I am either super-saturated with culture or totally devoid of it that I could be of any culture!

I looked up on the online dictionary and this is what it said about Culture: the customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial, religious, or social group; also the characteristic features of everyday existence (such as diversions or a way of life) shared by people in a place or time. The dictionary said few more things that was hard to make out exactly what they meant, but finally this is the simple conclusion I came to. Culture is an expected behaviour, set of values or preferences of a person based on the person’s community context. The emphasis is on the word ‘expected’ which essentially means there is a written or unwritten norms existing in the community. (I am about to pat myself on the back but that doesn’t fit the humility of my Indian culture)

How serious can the influence of cultural values could be? History is replete with many examples. The fire of the First Independence struggle of India in 1857, which the British describe as the Sepoy Rebellion, though simmering for a long time, was finally ignited when a rumour spread that the ammunition distributed to them was laced with animal fat. When Vasco Da Gamma arrived in Calicut in 1498, he showed up to Zamorin’s court with some worthless trinkets as gifts. He didn’t know that the custom was to bring in something substantial as gift. The Portuguese were promptly insulted and chased away by the displeased Zamorin and they in turn laid a siege in the sea murdering many Arab traders doing business with the Zamorin. A protracted fight between the Zamorins and Portuguese cost many lives and damage to each other’s properties.

In case you are wondering where I am going with this, I am thinking about the recent furore in some states over wearing masks to prevent the spread of Covid19. To most, this is a simple, reasonable request during such an extraordinary time to save people’s lives. But that is not how some others, steeped in a misinterpretation of personal freedom, see it. To them, it is the expression of their American identity to resist all attempts by an administration to curtail personal choice. Few others even raised a more nonsensical argument saying masks are a work of devil to interfere with God’s creation of free breathing! Could we attribute this to Culture? I don’t think so.

All of humanity is one society, irrespective of our nationality, race or religion. (If you are not sure of this, just ask the COVID19 virus, it will tell you). And in that society we have one key responsibility, to avoid doing anything that causes another fellow human being to lose his or her life. Especially when it is a minor accommodation like wearing a mask and keeping a social distance until this pandemic passes, just do it and not argue (even if you are an ‘argumentative Indian’) or try to hide behind a made up cultural identity. Please!

Please stay safe and do what you can to make others safe!


Recipe Corner

ചിക്കൻ ഗീ റോസ്സ്റ്റ് ചെട്ടിനാട് സ്റ്റൈൽ

-Presanth Krishnan

സാധാരണ ചിക്കൻ ബോൺ ഉള്ളതാണ് ഇത് ഉണ്ടാക്കാൻ നല്ലതു ഞാൻ ഇന്ന് ചിക്കൻ ബോൺലെസ്സ് ചെറുതായി കഷ്ണം ആക്കിയതാണ് ഉപയോഗിക്കുന്നത് .

ആദ്യം എല്ലാ മസാല കൂട്ടുകളും തയ്യാറാക്കി വക്കുക. 

വറ്റൽ മുളക് (മുളക് പൊടി) – 3 സ്പൂൺ 

മല്ലി (മല്ലി പൊടി) – 1 സ്പൂൺ 

ജീരകം – 1 സ്പൂൺ

ഉലുവ – 1 സ്പൂൺ

കുരുമുളക് – 2 സ്പൂൺ

മഞ്ഞൾ പൊടി – 1 സ്പൂൺ

തൈര് – 1 കപ്പ്

പിഴു പുലി – 2 കഷ്ണം 

ഗീ / ബട്ടർ – 1 കപ്പ്

കറിവേപ്പില – 15 ഇലകൾ 

മല്ലിയില – കുറച്ചു 

ശർക്കര – 1 സ്പൂൺ 

ഉപ്പ് – 3 സ്പൂൺ

നാരങ്ങ – 1 എണ്ണം

വെളുത്തുള്ളി – 8 കഷ്ണം

ആദ്യം ചിക്കൻ കഷണങ്ങൾ  ആക്കിയത് തൈരും , ഒരു അരമുറി നാരങ്ങാ പിഴിഞ്ഞതും ,ഒരു സ്പൂൺ ഉപ്പും , ഒരു സ്പൂൺ മഞ്ഞൾ പൊടിയും ചേർത്ത് നന്നായി  ഇളക്കി ഒരു മണിക്കൂറ് മാറ്റി വക്കുക

പിഴു പുലി  ഒരു കാൽ കപ്പു ചൂട് വെള്ളത്തില് കുതിർത്തു വക്കുക 

(വറ്റൽ മുളക് (മുളക് പൊടി) ,മല്ലി (മല്ലി പൊടി) ,ജീരകം ,ഉലുവ , കുരുമുളക് ) ഇതെല്ലം നന്നായി ചൂടാക്കി ഒരു ബ്രൗൺ കളർ ആകുമ്പോ മാറ്റി വക്കണം എന്നിട്ടു അതൊന്നു തണുത്തു കഴിയുമ്പോ എല്ലാം കൂടി നന്നായി അരച്ച് എടുക്കുക കൂടെ വെളുത്തുള്ളി , പിന്നെ ആ പിഴു പുലി മാറ്റി അതിന്റെ വെള്ളം കൂടെ ചേർത്ത് അരക്കണം.

ഇനി ഒരു ഫ്രൈയിങ്ങ് പാനിൽ ആവശ്യത്തിന് 3 സ്പൂൺ ഗീ / ബട്ടർ ഒഴിച്ച് മാരിനേറ്റ് ചെയ്ത ചിക്കൻ വറുത്തെടുക്കുക.

അരച്ചെടുത്ത മസാല ഒരു പാനിൽ , 2 സ്പൂൺ ഉപ്പും കൂടി ഇട്ടു , 1 സ്പൂൺ ഗീ / ബട്ടർ ഒഴിച്ച് ചൂടാക്കി നന്നായി മസാല മണം വരുമ്പോ നമ്മൾ ആദ്യം ചിക്കൻ മാരിനേറ്റ് ചെയ്തു തൈര് മിശ്രിതവും , ചിക്കൻ വറുത്ത ഗീ എല്ലാം കൂടെ മിക്സ് ചെയ്തു ചൂടാകുമ്പോ വറുത്ത ചിക്കൻ കൂടെ ഇട്ടു നന്നായി ഇളക്കി കൊടുക്കണം. നമുക്ക് വേണ്ട അത്ര ഫ്രൈ ആകുമ്പോ തീ കുറച്ചു കറിവേപ്പില ഇട്ടു ഫ്രൈ  ആക്കി എടുക്കുക.

ഇത്തിരി മല്ലി ഇലകൂടി മുകളിൽ ഇട്ടു സെർവ് ചെയ്യാവുന്നതാണ്.


Youth Corner

The Adventures of ‘Smack-in-Cheese’

-Abel Arun Davis

Hello fellow readers! My name is Smack-in-cheese. My friends are Nap-in-cheese and Snack-in-cheese. Snack-in-cheese really likes to snack on cheese. It’s almost like a sport for him. Guess where I met him? In the college cafeteria. Well, not really. He was eating on the bus!

Nap-in-cheese really likes to nap on cheese. Why? I do not know. He says cheese is very comfy. Did you know he sleeps for 15 hours a night and eats his bed for lunch! And skips breakfast everyday! Did you know his bed is made of cheese Pizza?

Okay Okay, let us go 1000 miles to the story… Are we there yet? Oh now, we are here. Once upon a time… Wait a minute! This is not a fairytale. Or, is it? Don’t make fun of me. It’s not like I have a small brain. Or, maybe I do… Okay, well at least noodles are not smart.

Now, we go to the story. One college morning, I had the worst nightmare I had ever had. When I woke up, Nap-in-cheese was jumping on my belly. Today is the day he was yelling, “What day!”  yelled while yawning, “Getting eaten day”. He asked “and why is that good?”

“It is not” and that is why I am trying to beat you up till you look like a red pepper because I don’t want to waste time and no one will want to eat you.

Then, can’t you just eat me? Well, nap-in-cheese does not want to do that or else the bean(human bean-g) will get stuffed. Okay, well where is snack-in-cheese? Oh, he is eating the table.

Okay now, can you get out of here? 

Okay okay I will get out. 

Then do so! 

“Fine!” nap-in-cheese said with a frown 

When Nap-in-cheese went to snack-in-cheese I looked for him everywhere. When I looked in the fridge snack-in-cheese was in there and before I could say holy cheese crumbs, he jumped on me like a wild pepper right on my head. When he got off, I asked what was for breakfast? Then he turned pale as Ranch and fell sideways. One hour later snack-in-cheese wakes up. Look what you have done? You ate the table? Weeeee! Now what will we put for breakfast? 

Ahem, that is what YOU will eat for breakfast.

Well, what did you eat then?

“The Table!”, said snack-in-cheese

To be continued..

What will smack in cheese eat? Find out in Part 2


Malayalam Class 2020-2021

Hello All,

Hope everyone is enjoying the summer vacation and staying safe.

The year 2020 has taken all of us by surprise and we all are trying to learn what a “New Normal” way of living looks like. We at ‘COMA Malayalam class’ also had to learn and make changes in the way we do things and find a new normal. We were able to continue some classes online for the last few months of the 2019/2020 school year. Our current plan is to continue that format this school year with the hope of going back to in-person format when the situation permits.

We are very delighted to announce that COMA Malayalam class will resume on Sunday, 08/23/2020. Interested COMA members, please register by sending an email to coma.officials@gmail.com. The class schedule will continue to be from 11:00 AM to noon every Sunday except holiday weekends and will be conducted via online classes.
Any changes to the schedule or format will be informed in advance so that you can plan accordingly.
Please note that COMA membership is a requirement to join the class.
Looking forward to another wonderful year.

-2020 EC & Malayalam class team


Meals on Wheels Volunteers

July 12, 2020: Manoj Thomas, Julie Joseph, Unni Nair, Latha Nair
Completed Route: # V1600

July 12, 2020: Valsan Palika, Hrishi Palika, Niran Palika
Completed Route: #V1801

June 2020 Newsletter

This pandemic has torn the the idea of how all of us visualize graduation ceremonies to be. Class of 2020, the world has changed. This moment is your opportunity to use your education to begin rebuilding, to apply the best of what you’ve learned. You all are Kings and Queens. 

COMA would like to congratulate the Class of 2020. Please join us to wish them the best.

Abitha Vinoyi, daughter of Ancey Vinoyi and Vinoyi Varughese, graduated from Olentangy Orange High School this year. She will be attending the Ohio State University, majoring in Computer Science & Engineering. In high school, she has participated in Senior Class Cabinet, Tri-M, National Arts Honors Society, Orchestra, Pioneer Ambassadors, Art Club, Interact Club, Student Council, Track & Field, Theater, Choir, and Fashion Club.

Norah Philip has graduated high school from Hilliard Davidson High school with Presidential Award and Honors Diploma. She is a member of NHS. Norah is a recipient of the thespian award. She will be attending Virginia Tech for Computer Science and engineering in the fall. Norah is the oldest daughter of Jicku Philip and Thankom Thomas Thamarappallil. 

Neelima Gopinath, daughter of Gopinath Haridass and Preethi Gopinath, graduated summa cum laude from Thomas Worthington High School. Neelima will be attending The Ohio State University in the fall as a Business major and will be part of the Politics, Law and Society Scholars program. Neelima is a recipient of the Women’s Business Scholarship from the Women’s Business Network of the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce. She was a part of Orchestra, National Honors Society, Spanish National Honors Society and Chemistry Club. She also volunteered at Riverside Hospital. She looks forward to continuing her education in the next stage of her life.

Adarsh (“Adu”) Vengal, younger son of Jacob Vengal (COMA Trustee) and Meenu Vengal graduated with a BS in Math (major) and Physics (minor) in the honors program at OSU. He will be joining the PhD program in Math at the University of California, San Diego this September. While at OSU Adu did research in Physics and Math. His Physics and Math research have been published. Jacob who’s dream in life was to become a Physics professor in SB College Changanacherry, couldn’t understand a single sentence from his physics research and said that to Adu. His response was “Appa, it is not meant for beginners”. Needless to say, Jacob didn’t make any more comments!!! Adu received first price for his Math research in a national conference. He has been a teaching assistant from his 5th semester. Adu’s passion for Math was clear from the elementary school.

Diviya Jacob, daughter of Naduparambil and Rajani Jacob.  She recently graduated from The Ohio State University with Bachelors degree in Neuroscience.  The past four years have been an educational experience for her in more than one aspect.  Looking back, she is very grateful for the opportunities that came my way and the support she had throughout this chapter of my life.  She is looking forward to making the most of what comes next!

Rachel Varughese, daughter of Thomas Pullumpallil and Preetha Varughese. She has graduated summa cum laude from Hilliard Davidson High School with an honors diploma. She will be attending The Ohio State University in the honors program, majoring in Chemical Engineering. During high school, she was President of the Environmental Club, where she helped to establish a district-wide recycling program. She has also been a two-year National Honors Society Inductee, served as the Executive Community Service Liaison for Student Council, volunteered as an appointed board member of Key Club, and played in the Chamber A orchestra. She would like to congratulate all 2020 graduates as we embark on the next stage of our lives together.

Niranjan, son of Valsan and Vijaya, is graduating from Olentangy High School.  He will be attending Ohio State University and plans to major in Mechanical Engineering. Niranjan is a member of the National Honor Society and part of JV Tennis team

Arvind Kumar, son of Ajoy and Beena, and has graduated from Dublin Coffman High School as a valedictorian with summa cum laude, Honor’s Diploma, National Merit Commended Scholar, Presidents Award, and National AP Scholar. He will be attending The Ohio State University in the fall majoring in Computer Science and Engineering.

Nitin Gopinath, son of Preethi Gopinath & Gopinath Haridass, graduated from The Ohio State University with the Bachelors degree in Material Science & Engineering. He’s currently working in IT on campus but plans to pursue full time work in the future

Nithya Warrier graduated from Dublin Jerome High school and will be going to University  of  Cincinnati for medical sciences. She ran cross country and track for all four years, and also was the becoming president of the Mock Trial.

Achievements:
National Merit Commended Scholar,
AP Scholar with Distinction,
Presidents Education Award,
Valedictorian,
Diploma with Honors

Meals on wheels volunteers

June 14: Arun Kumar, Priya Arun, Aishwarya Arun and Adithya Arun

June 28 : Nish Nishant, Pradeesh Pudhiyattil and Anoop Nair

Please submit the form below, if interested.

https://forms.gle/2giY8CjnvsJjeAA46

May 2020 Newsletter

Nithya Rajagopalan

SUMMER IS NOT COMPLETELY CANCELLED.

This is not the summer we had hoped or planned for.

The calendar is littered with cancelled vacations and summer camps, shuttered pools and playgrounds, spots in our calendars meant to be spent with friends and loved ones. But wait,there really is still fun to be had. With a little bit of imagination, we can set ourselves free from that cage of coronavirus. We can play silly games. Connect with family and friends. And find ways to express gratitude for others.

We all recently celebrated Mother’s Day. From giving emotional, mental, and physical support to teaching important life skills, there are millions of reasons why moms are the best. But what about all those other motherly figures who have a special place in our lives? Let’s brighten their day as well. Give them a call and let them know that you think about them and their well-being. Let’s blanket our world with LOVE. It’s simple!

Reflections or Ramblings #6: Life in the times of Corona

Hari Narayanaswamy

It will be totally farce to start this column by saying “Hope you are doing fine”, “these are unprecedent times”, etc. Such words have slowly started to wear down and annoy us. Let’s be honest, there is plenty of anxiety and concern to deal with for everyone. Some of us have managed to do better in dealing with them, some have chosen to effectively not think about them, and some others are struggling. How in the world can one manage to keep spirits up in such times?  (I mean, without reaching for the “spirit” that comes in bottles)

Google this question and I am sure plenty of answers will be available. There may be shortages of masks, PPEs or toilet paper, but not for unsolicited advices — most of them peddled through the greatest fake news platform, WhatsApp. In looking for something that would provide a strong, practical take on the subject, I stumbled upon this sensible article, thanks to a friend who shared it: “The Three Equations for a Happy Life, Even During a Pandemic”

If you have the time, please do read the article. For now, I would like to share few thoughts that came to mind when I read it. The crux of the article’s message is that there are four factors we need to keep our chins up: Faith, Family, Friends and Work. Get these four in order and solidly in place, pandemic or no pandemic, we will be fine. Let’s look at these factors one by one.

Faith: It doesn’t matter what shape or form faith takes; the fact is we need it. Even a God-less one will do. The point is to have a framework available to deal with things that are beyond us, enable us to view things in a broader perspective, enrich us with empathy and gratitude, and most importantly anchor ourselves in life’s meaning and purpose.

Family: A family is formed when more than one person has come together to live a common life. There are definitely individual needs, aspirations, hobbies, friend circles, etc. But ultimately the love and care one gets in family is unique and irreplaceable.

Friends: There is something special we get from the company of friends that we don’t from family. Maybe it’s the opportunity to drop all internal protective shields and become vulnerable without the fear of being hurt or destroyed. It is surprising that while with family we may feel a need to watch over ourselves, with true friends we hardly ever do. We need friends to share without being judged, have the confidence that they will be there in times of need as well as happiness and finally, just to hang around with.

Work: This is not about what we do to make a living, but what we do to make ourselves useful and find meaning and purpose. True work is where we derive our self-respect, mission and purpose of life. The question is how much are we dedicated to it? How much time do we give to it?

I believe there is one more factor that the article probably implied but didn’t mention explicitly: our own personal value system that provides the bed rock on which the above are built. If that foundation is a shifting sand, we don’t stand a chance. Otherwise, we are in good shape, irrespective what the future holds for us.

ഓർമയുടെ സീക്ബാർ

Aravind Venugopalan

പ്രതേകിച്ചു ഒരു ശ്രമവും ഇല്ലാതെ എപ്പോളും നമുക്കു ലഭിക്കുന്നതിനു വില കുറയും എന്ന് പലരും പറയുന്നത് ശെരിയാണെന്നു തോന്നും ചിലപ്പോൾ ഒക്കെ. ഏതു പാട്ടും എപ്പോൾ വേണമെങ്കിലും നമ്മുടെ വിരൽ തുമ്പിൽ കിട്ടുന്ന കാലമാണ് ഇത്. മാത്രമല്ല കേട്ട ഭാഗം എത്ര വേണം എങ്കിലും വലിയ ശ്രമവും തേയ്മാനവും കൂടാതെ വീണ്ടും വീണ്ടും കേൾക്കാൻ നമ്മളെ സഹായിക്കുന്ന സീക് ബാറുകൾ ലഭ്യമായ കാലം. പക്ഷെ എന്നിട്ടും ഇന്റർനെറ്റ് തലമുറയ്ക് തൊട്ടു മുന്നേ ഉള്ള നമ്മളെ പോലെ ഉള്ളവർക്കു  എന്താ കൊമ്പുണ്ടോ ? ഏതു പാട്ടിനെ കുറിച്ച് ചോദിച്ചാലും ഒരു ഏകദേശ വിവരം ഒക്കെ കാണും എപ്പോളും …ആര് എഴുതി ? ആര് സംഗീതം ചെയ്തു ? വരികൾ , ചിലപ്പോൾ രാഗങ്ങൾ വരെ ….

അതിന്റെ ഗുട്ടൻസ് മനസിലാക്കണം എങ്കിൽ നമ്മൾ ഓർമയുടെ സീക് ബാർ ഒന്ന് പുറകിലോട്ട്  വലിച്ചു ഞെരക്കിയാൽ മതി. mp3 ഫയലുകൾ ഇല്ലാത്ത കാലം. നമ്മുടെ സമയം മാറ്റി വെച്ച് ആകാശവാണിക്ക് കാത് കൊടുത്തിരുന്ന കാലം. ഒട്ടു മിക്ക വീട്ടിലും കാണും ബാറ്ററിയിൽ പ്രവർത്തിക്കുന്ന ഒരു ഫിലിപ്സ് റേഡിയോ അല്ലെങ്കിൽ , ഏതേലും ഒരു പ്രവാസി സമ്മാനിച്ച ഒരു ജപ്പാൻ നിർമിത നാഷണൽ പാനാസോണിക് ടേപ്പ് റെക്കോർഡർ.  ഇഷ്ടഗാനങ്ങൾ കേൾക്കാൻ കാത്തിരിക്കണം. അല്ലെങ്കിൽ കത്ത് എഴുതണം. അങ്ങനെ കാത്തു ഇരുന്നു  കാത്തിരുന്നു കിട്ടുന്നതിന്റെ സുഖം അനുഭവിക്കാൻ പലപ്പോഴും കട്ടിലിൽ മലർന്നു കിടന്ന് നെഞ്ചിനു മുകളിൽ റേഡിയോ വെച്ചിട്ട് ആകും പാട്ടുകൾ   ആസ്വദിക്കുക. യേശുദാസിന്റെ ശബ്ദം കർണ പുടങ്ങളിലും റേഡിയോയുടെ സ്പന്ദനം ചങ്കിലും നൽകുന്ന കമ്പനങ്ങൾ ആസ്വദിച്ച് ആയിരിക്കും മിക്കവാറും ഓർമ്മകൾ നുകരുന്നത്. അത് കൊണ്ട് തന്നെ അതിനു മധുരം ഏറും , ആവശ്യം ഇല്ലാത്തത് കേൾക്കണ്ടല്ലോ എന്നുള്ള ചിന്ത പോലും അന്ന് ഉണ്ടാകില്ല. തുടക്കം മുതൽ ഒടുക്കം വരെ നമുക്കു ആവശ്യം ഉള്ളത് തന്നെ , ഗാനരചന , സംഗീതം തുടങ്ങിയ വിവരങ്ങളും നമ്മൾ അറിയാതെ നമ്മുടെ ഉള്ളിൽ എഴുതപ്പെടും.  നീക്കി കളയാൻ ഇന്നുള്ള സീക് ബാർ അന്ന് ഇല്ലല്ലോ.

പിന്നെ ഉള്ള വേറെ ഒരു കാര്യം , റേഡിയോവിൽ വരുന്ന ഇഷ്ട ഗാനങ്ങൾ ടേപ്പ് റെക്കോർഡറിൽ റെക്കോർഡ് ചെയുക എന്നുള്ളതാണ്. കൊതി തോന്നുമ്പോൾ ഒക്കെ വീണ്ടും ഇട്ടു കേൾക്കാൻ അതായിരുന്നു അന്നത്തെ മാർഗം. പക്ഷെ എന്നാലും , ടേപ്പ് റെക്കോർഡറിന് ഒട്ടും  വേദനിക്കരുതേ എന്നുള്ള മട്ടിൽ ആയിരുന്നു , റിവൈൻഡും , റീപ്ലേ ഉം ഒക്കെ…അത് കൊണ്ട് തന്നെ അതിനു ഒക്കെയും മധുരം ആയിരുന്നു. ഒരിക്കലൂം മായാത്ത പാട്ടിന്റെ ഒരു വലിയ ഡാറ്റാബേസ് ഉള്ളിൽ ഇൻസ്റ്റാൾ ചെയ്യപ്പെട്ടത് അങ്ങനെ ആയിരുന്നു. അത് കൊണ്ട് തന്നെ ആണ് അന്നത്തെ ആ വികാരത്തെ കേൾവി ജ്ഞാനം എന്ന് ഇന്ന് ഉള്ളവർ പറയുന്നത്. അത് ജ്ഞാനം ഒന്നും ആയിരിക്കില്ല, ഒരു പക്ഷെ തീക്ഷ്ണമായ ജീവിത അനുഭവങ്ങളുമായി കെട്ടി പിണഞ്ഞതു കാരണം , മായാതെ കിടക്കുന്നത് ആയിരിക്കണം.  റേഡിയോയുടെ മൂളൽ പോലും , ചാറ്റൽ മഴയുടെ ശബ്ദം പോലെ കേട്ടുകൊണ്ട് ഉറങ്ങി ശീലിച്ചത് കൊണ്ടാകണം. എന്തും അകക്കാമ്പിൽ ആലേഖനം ചെയ്യപ്പെടുന്നത് , അതിനു നമ്മുടെ അനുഭവങ്ങളും വികാരങ്ങളും ആയി കെട്ടി പുണരാൻ കഴിയുമ്പോൾ ആണ്. സീക് ബാറുകൾ  പെട്ടെന്ന് അടിച്ചു ഏല്പിച്ച എന്നോ വിടർന്നു  എന്നോ വാടിയ പൂവിനെകാൾ കുളിരു ഏകുന്നത് നമ്മുടെ മുന്നിൽ തന്നെ ഉള്ളിൽ  മൊട്ടിട്ട് , ഒരുനാൾ വിടർന്ന പൂവിനാണ്. അതിനു മണമേറും , നിറമേറും…

Account Books

Ravi Hariharan

The dusty wind raged, trees shook in fury
The cremation ground found life once again.
The eyes slowly opened, as it awoke;
From the long slumber, into the memory lane;
I traced the footsteps of the past, plucked;
Branches out of all the dead trees that I saw.
Fallen leaves with tainted edges on the wayside,
Turned green, as my mind took them on a ride;

A journey through my past, which captures in its palm moments of happiness, satisfaction, sorrow, sometimes pain! A journey most of us willingly take, because the journey brings hope and solace to a desperate heart and moments of ecstasy to a joyful one.

Why do we like to travel through those already treaded paths of yesterdays? Is this human ability to think and analyze the past a gift or a curse?

I have heard my grandmother say “In 1974, when my son went to my sister’s house, she didn’t offer him even a cup of coffee. Did I do anything wrong by not offering her son a cup of coffee yesterday?!” And she would give out a sarcastic smile of having scored a great moral victory over her enemy who happens to be none but her very own sister! Needless to say, people have long memories, memories that span years and many a times decades. Often, I have wondered, how a Bollywood film hero manages to keep the fire of hatred burning in his heart for 20 long years to finally take revenge on the villain who destroyed his family. Having seen myriad instances of such in my own family, now I understand how…!

“Account Books” … a strange phrase that my mother has coined to call such memories, a book with debit and credit…Debit standing for all the good and happy memories which many a times we forget to enter in the book, because we take them for granted…and credit standing for all those moments of pain, ignominy and hurt inflicted by others on us…which we never forget to enter in our Account Book and which like any normal credit has to be paid back! Every time my mother talked about the “Account Book” that many around her kept up to date, I would make a self-introspection by opening my Account book and to my disappointment always found it thick and updated!

Why do we keep this Account Book of memories? Why does a human mind like to entangle itself with the knots which it has already unknotted? What does a human mind ultimately achieve with this “Eye for an eye…a tooth for a tooth policy.”?

I remember making a visit to Myrtle beach few years back and how amazed I was to see a huge chunk of shells that covered the beach sands. As I stood tall and looked at it, they looked all white and beautiful. I knelt and gave a closer look. Suddenly I saw a shell that was all black and ugly…And then I found another one. And then as I stood up. I felt that all the shells looked that way! Similarly, many of us have this habit of thinking of happy memories of the past. Well…Sometimes our mind doesn’t stop at those. The curious that our mind is…starts analyzing…incidents and people and before one stops thinking one realizes that those memories have actually lost a bit of shine.

Needless to say those memories of bad incidents that happened, much like an evening sky would only become darker, the more one looks at it, and hurt us more. Many a times such memories give us a feeling of guilt of inability which finally ends in self-pity which is the biggest source of false consolation a human heart can receive. So many a times, our heart tends to fall into this trap.

So why do we need memories? Isn’t it possible to live on without delving too much on past memories and neither on the unknown future? Like Dr. Spencer Johnson puts it, the biggest present we have is the present itself. So why not live the present to the lees without worrying about an unchangeable past and uncertain future?

I understand that it’s easier said than done, and many a times good memories are the best source of motivation and drive and the same can be said about our dreams for our future too. But having said that, let us try to consciously keep our Account books as thin as possible, not to break up the past or present for meticulous analysis and live as uncomplicated a life as we can live…trying to keep only the good memories and propel our lives forward, so when we look back at our lives a few years from now, we will have only good memories to think about.

Events

COMA Mother’s Day Event:

This Mother’s Day, a few mothers from COMA women’s group got together and decided to start their day with a fitness challenge – a virtual plank challenge to motivate our inner self ! All the mothers lit up lamp and observed a moment of silence as a solidarity to all our front line fighters in this current pandemic.

Here are a few pictures of the event:

Virtual 5k

Achievements

Gaurinanda Sudheesh Lekshmi won 3rd price in the FIA quiz competition. Congratulations Gauri !!

Meals on wheels volunteers

May 10: Saira Nawaz, Razvi Razack

May 24 : Binoy Rappai, Arun Davis, Dhanush Kondoth

Sponsors

April Newsletter

When somebody mentions April, what is the first thing that pops into your mind? 

You would probably think, “Oh no! April Fool’s Day is coming up!”. But there is a special day dedicated to preserve and protect our Earth which comes on April 22nd every year, and it is called “Earth Day”. This year’s Earth Day is really special, not only because we’re celebrating it while we are practising social distancing but also since it is the 50th Earth Day. The first Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970, which marked the start of the modern environmental movement. This Earth Day we are already taking care of the Earth by staying at home! By staying home, we are helping to reduce carbon emissions. While April 22nd is specifically set aside to remind us to protect our planet, we must help Mother Earth every day. 

Because of this lockdown, we have to stay at home for a long time. This could lead to stress, anxiety, and other health issues. Reading is one of the simple remedies to manage stress. It boosts cognitive skills, improves memory and focus, reduces stress and helps you gain knowledge. April 23rd was ‘World Book Day’, so COMA challenges you to read at least 20 minutes every day!

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss

As you know, we are in the middle of a pandemic. But even in the darkness, light can be found. During these times that light is people donating food, money and other essential things. A BIG thank you,  to all the benevolent people who donated and supported COMA’s COVID-19 relief fund. Because of you, our community was able to donate $4,500 to Mid Ohio Food Bank, LifeCare Alliance, and YWCA Columbus. We couldn’t achieve it without you, thank you so much for your contributions and assistance.


പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കും പാരിസ്ഥിതിക പ്രശ്നങ്ങളും

– Valsan Palika

പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് നമ്മുടെ ആവാസ വ്യസ്ഥക്കുണ്ടാക്കുന്ന പ്രത്യാഘാതത്തെപ്പറ്റി നമ്മെളെല്ലാവരും വളരെ ബോധവാന്മാരണ്. മാത്രമല്ല, നമ്മളാലാവും വിധം ആത്മാർത്ഥമായി ഈ വിപത്തിനെ നേരിടാൻ റീസൈക്ലിങും മറ്റും നാം വളരെ കാര്യക്ഷമമായി ചെയ്യുന്നുമുണ്ട്. നമ്മുടെ അസോസിയേഷന്റെ ‘യൂത്ത് വിങ്’ന്റെ ഈ വർഷത്തെ ഒരു പ്രധാന ഉദ്യമവും ഒരു ‘റിക്ലയ്‌സിങ് ക്യാമ്പയിൻ’ ആണ്. എന്താണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ ലൈഫ് സൈക്കിൾ? പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് ഏതൊക്കവിധത്തിൽ നമ്മുടെ ജീവിതത്തിലേക്ക് കടന്നുകയറിയിട്ടുണ്ട്? റീസൈക്ലിങ് അഥവാ പുനരുപയോഗം എത്രമാത്രം ഫലവത്താണ്? നമുക്കൊന്ന് പരിശോധിക്കാം.

‘മൃദുവായതും എളുപ്പത്തിൽ രൂപപ്പെടുത്താൻ കഴിയുന്നതും’ എന്നാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് എന്ന വാക്കിന്റെ അർഥം. രസതന്ത്രത്തിൽ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കുകൾ ‘പോളിമർ’  വിഭാഗത്തിൽപ്പെടുന്നു. പെട്രോളിയം സംസ്കരണത്തിന്റെ ഉപോല്പന്നങ്ങളിൽനിന്നുണ്ടാക്കുന്ന ‘സിന്തെറ്റിക് പോളിമർ’ ആണ് ഇപ്പോഴത്തെ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ അടിസ്ഥാന ഘടകം.  ഈ പോളിമർ തന്മാത്രകൾ കാർബൺ ആറ്റങ്ങളുടെ നീണ്ട ചങ്ങലകളാണ്, പ്രകൃതിദത്തമായ പോളിമറുകളെക്കാൾ വളരെ നീണ്ടത്. അതാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന് ശക്തിയും ഭാരക്കുറവും വഴക്കവും നൽകുന്നത്. ഇതേ സ്വഭാവം തന്നെയാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ വിഘടനത്തിനുള്ള പ്രധാന തടസവും!

കഴിഞ്ഞ ഒരു നൂറ്റാണ്ടിനിടയിലാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ ഉപയോഗം വളരെയധികം വർധിച്ചത്. പ്രധാനയും അഞ്ച് തരത്തിലുള്ള പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കുകളാണ് ഇപ്പോൾ ഉപയോഗത്തിലുള്ളത്. 

PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate): പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് കുപ്പികൾ – പാനീയങ്ങളും പാചക എണ്ണകളും നിറച്ചു വരുന്ന പാക്കറ്റുകൾ.

HDPE (High Density Polyethylene): ഉയർന്ന താപനിലയും രാസ പദാർത്ഥങ്ങളും ചെറുത്തു നിൽക്കാൻ കഴിവുള്ളത്. ഹെൽമെറ്റ്, പെട്രോൾ ടാങ്കുകൾ, കുപ്പിയുടെയും മറ്റും മൂടികൾ, മരത്തിനു സമാനമായ ഫ്ളോറിങ് പലകകൾ മുതലായവ 

PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride): ഉത്പാദന ചെലവ് കുറവ്, അതിനാൽത്തന്നെ ധാരാളം നിത്യോപയോഗ സാധനങ്ങളുടെ  നിർമാണ ഘടകം

LDPE (Low Density Polyethylene): 100 ഡിഗ്രിവരെ ചൂട് താങ്ങാൻ കഴുവുള്ള പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്. പ്ലേറ്റുകളും, ട്രെയ്‌കളും, കമ്പ്യൂട്ടർ ബോർഡുകൾ, കളിപ്പാട്ടങ്ങൾ മുതാലാവയും.

PP (Polypropylene): കപ്പുകൾ, കുപ്പികൾ, പാത്രങ്ങൾ, വീട്ടുപകരണങ്ങൾ,  ഓട്ടോമോട്ടീവ് ബാറ്ററികൾ

പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കില്ലാത്ത ഒരു ചുറ്റുപാട് ചിന്തിക്കാൻ വളരെ പ്രയാസമാണ്. നമ്മൾ ഉപയോഗിക്കുന്ന മിക്കവാറും വസ്തുക്കളും പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് ചേർന്നവയോ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് പത്രങ്ങളിലോ പൈപ്പുകളിലോ ബാഗുകളിലോ വരുന്നവയോ ആണ്. (നിങ്ങളുടെ ചുറ്റും ഒന്ന് കണ്ണോടിച്ചാൽ അറിയാം പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ അതിപ്രസരം). അതിനാൽ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മുക്തമായ ഒരു ജീവിതം പ്രായോഗികമല്ല. പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ കുഴപ്പങ്ങൾ മനസ്സിലാക്കുകയും അതിൽനിന്ന് മോചനം നേടാനുള്ള മാർഗങ്ങൾ അറിഞ്ഞിരിക്കുകയുമാണ് അഭികാമ്യം.

എന്തൊക്കെയാണ് മനുഷ്യനും പരിസ്ഥിതിക്കും ഇതുകൊണ്ടുള്ള പ്രശ്നങ്ങൾ?

മുൻപ് പറഞ്ഞതുപോലെ, ഇപ്പോൾ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് ഉണ്ടാക്കുന്നത് പ്രധാനമായും പെട്രോളിയത്തിൽനിന്നുമാണ്. (അത്യാവശ്യം പ്രകൃതി വാതകത്തിൽനിന്നും). പ്രകൃതിവിഭവങ്ങളുടെ ചൂഷണത്തിന് പുറമെ, പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് നിർമാണത്തിൽ പുറംതള്ളുന്ന അപകടകാരികളായ രാസ വസ്തുക്കൾ നമ്മുടെ വായു, വെള്ളം, ഭൂമി മുതലായവയെ അനിയന്ത്രിതമായി മലീമസമാക്കുന്നു. ഇത് ആവാസവ്യവസ്ഥയെത്തന്നെ അപകടത്തിലാക്കുന്നു. 

പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് നിർമാണത്തിൽ പല രാസവസ്തുക്കളും ചേർക്കുന്നുണ്ട്. അതിൽ നമുക്ക് പൊതുവെ പരിചയമുള്ളത് ‘BPA’ (Bisphenol A) ആണ്. ‘BPA Free’ എന്ന് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്ക് ബോട്ടിലുകളിലും മറ്റും നിങ്ങൾ കണ്ടിട്ടുണ്ടാവും. BPA ക്യാന്സറിനും മറ്റു ജനിതക രോഗങ്ങൾക്കും നിദാനമാകാമെന്ന് പല ഗവേഷകരും നിരീക്ഷിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ട്.  

ഉപയോഗശേഷം വലിച്ചെറിയുന്ന പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്ക് മാലിന്യമാണ് മറ്റൊരു വലിയ പ്രശ്നം. ഇവ വിഘടിച്ചു മണ്ണിൽ അലിഞ്ഞുചേരാൻ ആയിരക്കണക്കിന് വർഷങ്ങൾ വേണ്ടിവരും. വിഘടന പ്രക്രിയയിൽ ഇവയിൽനിന്നുണ്ടാവുന്ന ‘മൈക്രോ’ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കുകൾ (<5 mm) വായു, വെള്ളം ഇവയിൽക്കൂടി മനുഷ്യനിലും മറ്റു ജീവികളിലും എത്തി പലതരം രോഗങ്ങൾക്കും കാരണമാകുന്നു. പലവിധ വസ്ത്രങ്ങളും പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് ഉത്പന്നങ്ങൾ ചേർന്നതാണ്. ഈ വസ്ത്രങ്ങൾ കഴുകുമ്പോഴെല്ലാം ദശലക്ഷക്കണക്കിന് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മൈക്രോ ഫൈബറുകൾ നമ്മുടെ വാഷിംഗ് മെഷീനുകളിൽ‌ നിന്നും മലിനജല ശുദ്ധീകരണ പ്ലാന്റുകളിലൂടെ കടലിലേക്ക് നേരിട്ട് പോകുന്നു. കടൽ മലിനീകരണത്തിന്റെ ഒരു പ്രധാന കാരണം മൈക്രോ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കാണ്. സമുദ്രജീവികൾ ഈ വിഷ നാരുകൾ ഭക്ഷിക്കുകയും അവ ഭക്ഷ്യ ശൃംഖലയിലേക്ക് കടന്നുവരികയും ചെയ്യുന്നു. നമ്മുടെ മൽസ്യ സമ്പത്തിനെ ബാധിച്ചിട്ടുള്ള ഒരു വലിയ വിപത്താണ് കടലിലെ പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മാലിന്യം. കൊക്കക്കോള, നെസ്‌ലെ, പെപ്സികോ – ഈ മൂന്ന് വ്യവസായ ഭീമന്മാരാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മാലിന്യത്തിന്റെ പ്രധാന കാരണക്കാർ *. അതിന്റെ പൂർണ ഉത്തരവാദിത്തം ഏറ്റെടുക്കുന്നതിന് പകരം ‘റീസൈക്ലിങ്’ ഉപഭോക്താവിന്റെ ഉത്തരവാദമായി അടിച്ചേല്പിക്കാനാണ് ഈ മൂന്ന് കമ്പനികളും പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മാലിന്യങ്ങൾക്ക് കാരണക്കാരായ മറ്റ് കമ്പനികളും ശ്രമിച്ചുകൊണ്ടിരിക്കുന്നത്. അതാണ് നാം ഇന്ന് കാണുന്ന ‘റീസൈക്ലിങ്’ന്റെ തുടക്കം. നാം റീസൈക്കിൾ ചെയ്യുന്ന പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കും മറ്റു വസ്തുക്കളും എവിടെചെന്ന്ചേരുന്നുവെന്ന് നിങ്ങൾ ചിന്തിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ടോ?

റീസൈക്ലിങിനായി നമ്മൾ നിക്ഷേപിക്കുന്ന പല സാധനങ്ങളും നമ്മുടെ രാജ്യത്തുതന്നെയുള്ള ചെറുതും വലുതുമാണ പല വ്യവസായങ്ങളും സംസ്കരിക്കുകയും മറ്റു പല നിത്യോപയോഗ വസ്തുക്കളാക്കി മാറ്റുകയും ചെയ്യുന്നു. എന്നാൽ വലിയൊരു ശതമാനം ചൈനയിലേക്കു കയറ്റി അയക്കപ്പെടുന്നു. ചൈനയിലെ മെഗാ ഡ്രാഗൺ ഫാക്ടറികൾക്ക് വിശപ്പടക്കാൻ ഇത്തരം ഇറക്കുമതി കൂടിയേ തീരു. ലോകമെമ്പാടുമുള്ള ദരിദ്ര രാജ്യങ്ങളിലേക്ക് പ്രതിവർഷം ലക്ഷക്കണക്കിന് ടൺ യുഎസ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മാലിന്യങ്ങൾ കയറ്റി അയയ്ക്കുന്നു.  ഇത് അതാത് രാജ്യങ്ങളിൽ പൊതുജനാരോഗ്യത്തിനും പരിസ്ഥിതിക്കും ഉണ്ടാകുന്ന പ്രത്യാഘാതങ്ങൾ ഭയാനകമാണ്.

പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ അതിപ്രസരം കുറക്കാൻ എന്താണൊരു പോംവഴി? റീസൈക്ലിങ് ഒരു പരിധിവരെ സഹായിക്കും. അതിനേക്കാൾ എത്രയോ നല്ലതാണ് പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കിന്റെ ഉപയോഗം കുറക്കുന്നത്. അതിനാവട്ടെ നമ്മുടെ പരിശ്രമം. ഒറ്റപ്രാവശ്യം ഉപയോഗിച്ച് വലിച്ചെറിയുന്ന പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് പ്ലേറ്റുകളും മറ്റും ഒഴിവാക്കുക. കടയിൽ നിന്ന് കിട്ടുന്ന പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് സഞ്ചികൾ കുറക്കാൻ ഇപ്പോഴും കയ്യിൽ ബാഗ് കരുതുക. പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് നിർമിത വസ്തുക്കൾ കഴിവതും ഒഴിവാക്കുക. 

പറയാൻ എത്ര എളുപ്പം! ഞാൻ ഈ ടൈപ്പ് ചെയ്യുന്ന കീ ബോർഡും, കാണുന്ന മോണിറ്ററും കമ്പ്യൂട്ടറും ഫോണും എന്നുവേണ്ടാ, കണ്ണടയും, ചീപ്പും, ചെരുപ്പും എല്ലാം എല്ലാം പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മയം! ഇതൊന്നുമില്ലാത്ത ഒരു ജീവിതം ചിന്തിക്കാനേ വയ്യ! എങ്കിലും പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക്കുണ്ടാക്കുന്ന പ്രശ്നങ്ങൾ അറിഞ്ഞിരുന്നാൽ ഒരുപക്ഷേ, അടുത്ത തവണ നൂറു പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് പ്ലേറ്റുകൾ വാങ്ങുന്നതിന് പകരം ‘IKEA’യിലും മറ്റും കിട്ടുന്ന പ്ലേറ്റുകൾ നിങ്ങൾ വാങ്ങിയേക്കാം!

അതൊരു പ്ലാസ്റ്റിക് മുക്ത വിപ്ലവത്തിന്റെ തുടക്കമാവട്ടെ! നമ്മുടെ വരും തലമുറക്കുവേണ്ടി നമുക്ക് ചെയ്യാൻ പറ്റുന്ന ഏറ്റവും വലിയ ഉപകാരമായിരിക്കും അത്.

* https://www.forbes.com/sites/trevornace/2019/10/29/coca-cola-named-the-worlds-most-polluting-brand-in-plastic-waste-audit/#73c0f1e774e0

വീണ്ടും ഒരു പ്രഭാതം

– Hari Narayanaswamy

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ദു:ഖം മാത്രമാണുളളിൽ
ക്രൂരയാം ഘോരമാരി 
നിഷ്ഠൂരം വേട്ട തുടരവേ
സ്വച്ഛ ജീവിതങ്ങളെ 
കടപുഴക്കിയെറിയവേ
സ്വപ്നങ്ങളെ ഹ്ലാദം 
ചുട്ടുകരിക്കവേ
മരണമോടിയെത്തും 
മുമ്പേ മരിക്കുന്നു 
വിട ചൊല്ലാനാകാതെ
കാതരം ഹൃദയങ്ങൾ.
മുഖംമൂടിയിലൊളിക്കുന്നു 
വിളറിയ മുഖങ്ങൾ 
കൈയ്യുറക്കുള്ളിൽ 
വിറയ്ക്കുന്നു വിരലുകൾ 
ശവമെടുക്കാൻപോലും 
ഭയക്കുന്നു മക്കൾ.
പരസ്പരം കാണാതെ
അകലുന്ന കൂട്ടുകാർ
തമ്മിലകലം കല്പിപ്പത്
ഉള്ളിലോ പുറത്തോ?
നമുക്കു ജീവിപ്പതിന്നായിന്നു
മരിക്കേണമോ മനുഷ്യത്വം?
കരളലിയും ദുരന്തങ്ങൾ
നിശ്ശബ്ദം വീണുടയവേ
ഉള്ളിൽ, അകത്തളങ്ങളിൽ 
കരിനിഴലുകൾ പരന്നീടവേ
തേങ്ങലോടുയരുന്നിതെങ്ങോ
നോവിന്റെ ഗസലുകൾ
കൂട്ടിന്നീണം പകരുവാൻ 
രാക്കിളി, നീയും മറന്നുവോ?
മേടപ്പുലരിയിൽ വിഷു
കൊന്നയും കണിയുമായെത്തവേ
ആശതൻ കെടാവിളക്കിൽ
വീണ്ടുമൊരു തിരികൊളുത്തവേ
ദു:സ്വപ്നമെന്നപോൽ മറയുമോ
ദു:ഖം, വീണ്ടുമുണരുമോ പ്രഭാതം?

Listen to this poem being recited by Prahlad Trivikraman.


Recipe Corner

Veggie Biriyani with Paneer

– Pradip Ramachandran

Serves: 6-8

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Oven time: 20 minutes.

I made this for dinner when I had some friends over a couple of weeks ago. Actually nothing too fancy. Just added fried Paneer to a simple vegetable biriyani and most people liked the result !

Biriyani isn’t a 5 minute dish to prepare. So embark on this only when you are cooking leisurely and have some time (approx 40-50 minutes) on your busy schedule😁

As always, read the recipe BEFORE you start chopping and slicing and cooking. That way you get your road-map for the dish in your head to get you to your goal. Don’t hesitate to make adjustments as needed. What is the fun in cooking if you simply follow someone else’s recipe (except for the ratio of rice to water)?

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons oil or ghee (clarified butter)
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 1 tblspn minced garlic
  • tblspn minced ginger
  • 1 ripe tomato diced
  • 1/2-3/4 cup warm water (use as needed)
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • carrot sliced into one inch pieces (thickness of french fries)
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • Salt to taste
  • Dry spices (you can also use a store bought Biriyani mix like Eastern or any other brand)
    1. 1/4 tspn turmeric powder
    2. 1/4 tspn cayenne pepper
    3. 1/2 tspn ground black pepper
    4. 2 tspns Garam masala
    5. 1 tspn coriander powder
    6. 1/2 tspn Fennel powder (optional)
  • 1 cup fried Paneer (fresh cheese)
  • 3 tblspns chopped mint
  • 4 tblspns chopped cilantro

Method:

  • Add ghee or oil in a pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add the onion, and cook until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Stir in garlic, ginger, tomatoes, and  saute for 4-5 minutes, cook covered on low-med heat until most of the moisture has evaporated (6-8 minutes). Peek once in a while to ensure that the stuff isn’t burning. If too dry, sprinkle a little warm water.
  • Add vegetables, spice powders and salt. Stir well, add 1/2 cup warm water and cook covered on medium heat until vegetables are tender (not over cooked).
  • Add Paneer cubes, mint and cilantro. Stir well.

While the veggies are cooking, prepare the rice as follows.

For rice

  • 2 cups washed and drained Basmati rice
  • 3 tblspn Ghee or oil
  • 1/2 tspn cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tspn Shah Jeera (optional)
  • 5-6 Cardamom pods
  • 1 inch piece of Cinnamon stick
  • 4-5 whole Cloves
  • 2 bay-leaves
  • 2 hot green chili peppers slit lengthwise (optional, for flavor)
  • 3.5 cups of warm water
  • Salt to taste

Method:

  • Warm the Ghee or oil in a fairly deep pot warm on medium heat.
  • Add all the whole spices and saute for a couple of minutes. Add 3.5 cups of warm water and sufficient salt. Bring to a rolling boil.
  • Then add drained rice and green chili pepper. Stir occasionally until water comes back to a boil. Cook uncovered for 5-6 minutes until most of the water has evaporated. Then reduce heat to the lowest setting and cook COVERED for 15-18 minutes. Remove lid and gently fluff the rice using a fork.

Layering:

  • 3 tblspns chopped mint (garnish)
  • 3 tblspns chopped cilantro (garnish)
  • 1 tspn Rose essence diluted in 2 tblspns of water or rose water
  • 1/2 cup fried onions
  • A pinch of saffron soaked in 3 tablespoons of warm milk (optional)

Method:

  • Reserve half the fried onions, cilantro and mint for garnish.
  • In a flat serving dish, place alternate layers of the veggie+paneer mix, remaining cilantro, mint, fried onions and cooked rice. You should have at least two layers.
  • Sprinkle rose water over rice
  • Garnish with fried onions, cilantro and mint. Sprinkle saffron milk on top.
  • Cover dish with a tight-fitting lid and place in 300F over for 20 minutes.
  • Remove, and serve hot with Raitha.
  • Note: Let your guests do the “mixing” of the biriyani. You don’t want to spoil the look of it, do you?

Youth Corner

Save the Earth

– Avnita Pramod

6th Grade, Hyatts Middle School, Powell

Earth Day is an annual event celebrated around the world. In fact, it marks its 50th anniversary on April 22, 2020. Earth Day celebrates the environmental movement and raises awareness about pollution and ways to maintain a clean habitat. 

Many sixth graders like me want to make a difference in the world. One time, as we were driving to the grocery store, I saw a lake. That lake had so much plastic and trash in the water. I wondered why anyone would want to throw plastic or trash in the waters when we had recycling bins and trash cans. I went home and wanted to do some research about this. It turns out 14 billion pounds of garbage was being dumped in the ocean each year. That is more than 1.5 million per hour. Some people ask why is it bad to throw trash in the ocean? Nature.com states, “When plastic finally breaks down, it causes trillions of plastic particles to float around in the ocean. This causes pollution in the oceans and has harmful effects on sea life.” This quote shows how bad trash in oceans can be. When fish eat plankton, they are ingesting the very small plastic particles in the ocean. This kills the fish and their ecosystem. Some ask, can’t we scoop it all out of the sea? Well, it is a nice idea but sadly impossible. Only 1% of litter floats and the rest sinks down to the ocean bottom. 

What does putting plastic in oceans and land do to us? Plastic releases chemicals in the surrounding soil and air. When this plastic pollutes the air, it makes it harder for humans to breathe. Also, if the soil is polluted, plants will wither down and die. It can take hundreds or even thousands of years for plastic to break down, so the environmental damage is long-lasting.

Kids like you and I want to help the earth in any way we can. There are many strategies that can help mother earth and its habitat. We can reduce using plastic by using reusable water bottles instead of bottled water, taking reusable bags instead of using plastic bags, avoiding straws, plastic cups etc. We can also recycle plastic instead of putting them in trash cans, avoid products that contain microplastics and even support your neighborhood cleanups. These are some of the small changes that we can make to our daily lifestyle which will create a big difference. Spread the word and encourage others to do these simple things and the world will be a better place for all of us to live.  

   

Save Earth – Poster

– Ameya Pramod

4th Grade, Liberty Tree Elementary School, Powell


Save the Earth – Painting

– Aanjali  Freney

4th Grade, New Albany Plain Local School

Save the Earth – Drawings

– Neil Nair 

7th grade, Willard Grizzell Middle School, Dublin

– Abitha Vinoyi

12th grade , Olentangy Orange High School

Kids Corner

Save my Earth

– Tanvi Rajesh 3 years old

Made this craft with home-made dough.


Meals on Wheels Volunteers

April 12, 2020: Subin Thomas, Simple Subin, Kevin Subin and Trisha Subin
Completed Route # V1600

April 26, 2020 : Nish Nishant,Deepa Jayabalan and Jayabalan
Completed Route# V1801


Obituaries

Let us take a moment to remember all those who have lost their lives due to COVID-19.


Special Thanks to all COVID-19 frontline fighters

You are walking right into the fire to help us get through this difficult time and making this world a better place.
Thank you so much for all your hard work and support to face this adversity.

March Newsletter

Spring is here. But this spring is like no other we have seen. Ohio has put a “stay at home” order in place. We are at a critical moment in this fight against COVID-19. We will win this fight, but we will end sooner and with far fewer people sick if we strictly follow the guidelines being requested by medical professionals and leaders. Most of us are stuck woking from home, helping children with their online learning and doing our best to keep calm. Getting outdoors can be relaxing during these stressful times. Here are some outdoor activities you can take up now:

  • Start growing your own food. Right now is the perfect time to sow seeds of crops that can tolerate spring frosts.
  • Start cleaning out your shrub and flower beds. Ideally, you should wait to cut back perennials and rake leaves out of garden beds until the daytime temperatures are regularly in the 50s since many pollinators and other beneficial insects are still hibernating for the winter. 
  • Prepare your containers for planting. Bring all your pots out of storage and scrub them with a 10% bleach solution, inside and out, to get rid of any lingering fungal diseases from last season. 
  • Prune your woody perennials. Plants like butterfly bushes, caryopteris and Russian sage are known as woody perennials.
  • Prune your roses. If you’re a rose grower, head out to the garden and trim off any winter-killed stems, crossing branches and overgrown canes.
  • Edge garden beds. With all this time on our hands, make the most of it by putting a crisp, clean edge on all your garden beds. 
  • Pressure wash patios, decks and porches. Early spring is also a great time to get out the pressure washer and brighten things up.

Reflections or Ramblings (# 6): ചിന്താശകലങ്ങള്‍

-Hari Narayanaswamy

മതവും മദവും

മനുഷ്യന് മനുഷ്യനെക്കൊല്ലാന്‍
‍മദമൊരു കാരണം
മതവും ഒരു കാരണം
മദംകൊണ്ടു മതിമറന്നവനേതു മതം?

വിശ്വാസവും ജ്ഞാനവും

വിശ്വാസിക്കവിശ്വാസി ദു:ഖം
അവിശ്വാസിക്കു വിശ്വാസി ദു:ഖം
അജ്ഞാനിയ്ക്ക്‌ ജ്ഞാനി മോക്ഷം
ജ്ഞാനിയ്ക്കജ്ഞാനിയും ദൈവം

ഈശ്വരന്‍

ഈശ്വരനു പേരിട്ടിട്ടാ-
പേരിൻ പേരില്‍
പോരു നടത്തീട്ടാ
പോരിന്‍ പേരില്‍
‍അധര്‍മം വാഴിച്ചീടിനവരില്‍
ആര്‍ക്കു സ്വര്‍ഗ്ഗം മാളോരേ?

ഭാഷകള്‍

ലോകകാര്യം പറവതിനെ-
നിക്കെത്രയോ ഭാഷകള്‍
‍എന്നെകുറിച്ചെന്നോടോതാന്‍
മൌനമെന്നൊരു ഭാഷമാത്രം

ലക്ഷ്യം

അര്‍ത്ഥം കളഞ്ഞിട്ടര്‍ത്ഥം തേടണം
അര്‍ത്ഥത്തിന്നപ്പുറമുള്ളത്‌ നേടണം

മാര്‍ഗ്ഗം

പാതയില്ലാത്തിടത്ത്‌*
യാത്രയുമില്ല,
വഴികാട്ടിയുമില്ല

(*Truth is a pathless land – J.Krishnmurthy)

ഞാന്‍

എന്റെയുള്ളില്‍ ഒരു നൂറു ‘ഞാന്‍’ ഉണ്ട്‌
പിന്നെ, ഞാനറിയാത്ത ഒരു ഞാനും

Coconut oil is not poison

-Sreejith Menon

The famous “saturated fats are bad for you” myth has been around for quite a few decades now. How did this myth come to be? 

The first correlation was observed before World War I,  merely through studying hospitalisation patterns. However, it became more prominent when a team led by Ancel Keys conducted the famous seven countries study

Come 20th century, ‘how saturated fats are full of cholesterol and vegetable oils are not’ lobbying started. This single research changed the way people died in the 20th century. This single research killed millions and is still killing millions. The vegetable oil companies cared less, because the research was in perfect alignment with what they were selling.

Coming back to vegetable oils, most of them were sold to us saying they’re low in cholesterol, the fact is they do not have cholesterol. These so called “no cholesterol” oils, can cause inflammation which is the root cause of many illnesses in humans. Ayurveda confirms this. Our bodies were never meant to process PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acids) or MUFAs(Mono-unsaturated fatty acids) or trans fats. 

So what do we do? What’s next? 

Discontinue the use of vegetable oils and switch back to nammude swantham coconut oil, Butter and Ghee.

Coconut oil is one of the best and safest oils for consumption and requires minimal processing. While there are no magical benefits of having coconut oil if your overall nutrition and lifestyle is bad, it’s still better than having refined oils. 

Fun Fact: Number of people having heart issues in South India where people eat coconut oil are far far far less compared to people in North India. In India, a person dies of heart attack every 4 minutes. Heart attacks lead the chart for reason of death. It’s a big scam, a money making industry, that’s what it is. Jago grahak, Jago! 

P.S – I am not a Dr, but here are some research articles you can read for your awareness. 

(https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5437600/pdf/12937_2017_Article_254.pdf)

(https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4836695/)

(http://annals.org/aim/article-abstract/1846638/association-dietary-circulating-supplement-fatty-acids-coronary-risk-systematic-review)

(https://www.wiseguyreports.com/reports/3218385-global-coconut-oil-market-2018-by-manufacturers-regions)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegetable_oil


Recipe Corner

Okra curry (Kerala style with kudampuli) 

-Deepa Vinay

Ingredients

Small Okra- 15 nos.  

Small onion (Shallot) – 4 nos. 

Ginger – 1 small piece

Green chilli – 2 nos.

Curry leaves – few 

Kudampuli (pot tamarind) – 2 pieces or ½ piece tomato

Turmeric- 1/4 tsp 

Chilli powder- 1 tsp

Cashmere chilli powder – 1 tsp (optional-it will give nice color) 

Fenugreek powder- pinch (optional)

Coconut milk – 1 cup   

Oil – 4 tsp (use coconut oil as it will give authentic Kerala curry taste)

Salt as needed     

Method  

  • Wash small tender okras and dry with a paper towel.  Remove the head and base of okra and, cut it into two pieces.  
  • Crush 2 small onions and ginger and, keep it aside.
  • Heat 3 tsp oil in a pan and shallow fry cut okras.  
  • Add crushed onion and ginger to fried okra and sauté for ½ minute or until the raw aroma of ginger disappears
  • Add chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt and curry leaves.  Mix well and let it cook till the raw smell is gone
  • Add one cup of water and kudampuli in it.  Let it cook until gravy thickens
  • Now add coconut milk & sliced green chilli to the gravy. Simmer the flame and stir occasionally.   
  • When gravy thickens into semi medium consistency, add pinch of fenugreek powder on the top
  • Prepare the tempering by heating 1 tsp oil, two sliced small onions and few curry leaves.  
  • Pour the tempering over the curry, close the pan, switch of the flame, and let it stay for 5 minutes.
  • Curry is now ready to be served with rice or chapattis

Mango curry

-Rosmi Arun

ചേരുവകൾ – 1 

1 . പച്ചമാങ്ങ (ചെറുതായി അരിഞ്ഞത്) – 1 എണ്ണം  
2 . ഇടത്തരം സവാള  (നീളത്തിൽ അരിഞ്ഞത്) – 1 എണ്ണം 
3 . ഇഞ്ചി (നീളത്തിൽ അരിഞ്ഞത്) – 1 ടേബിൾ സ്പൂൺ 
4 . പച്ചമുളക് (നീളത്തിൽ അരിഞ്ഞത്) – 2 എണ്ണം 
5 . കറി വേപ്പ് ഇല – 1 ഇതൾ 
6 . ഉപ്പ് – ആവശ്യത്തിന് 
7 . മഞ്ഞൾ പൊടി – 1/2 ടേബിൾ സ്പൂൺ 
8 . മുളക് പൊടി – 3/4 ടേബിൾ സ്പൂൺ 
9 . മല്ലി പൊടി – 2 1/2  ടേബിൾ സ്പൂൺ 
10 . വെള്ളം – 2 കപ്പ് 
11 . തേങ്ങാപാൽ – 1 ടിൻ (Chaokoh Coconut milk tin)

ചേരുവകൾ – 2 

1 . വെളിച്ചെണ്ണ – 2 ടേബിൾ സ്പൂൺ 
2 . കടുക് – 1 ടീസ്പൂൺ 
3 . ഉലുവ – 1 ടീസ്പൂൺ
4 . വറ്റൽ മുളക് – 3 എണ്ണം 
5 . കറി വേപ്പ് ഇല – 1 ഇതൾ 

പാചകം ചെയ്യേണ്ട വിധം 

1 . ഒരു ഇടത്തരം ചീനച്ചട്ടി എടുത്തു ചേരുവകൾ 1 -ൽ പറഞ്ഞിരിക്കുന്ന 1 മുതൽ 9 വരെ ഉള്ള ചേരുവകൾ ഓരോന്നായി ചേർക്കുക. നല്ല പോലെ കൈ കൊണ്ട് കൂട്ടി തിരുമ്മി 10 മിനിറ്റ് മാറ്റി വയ്ക്കുക.

2 . രണ്ട്  കപ്പ് വെള്ളം അതിലേക്ക് ഒഴിക്കുക. നല്ല പോലെ ഒരു തവി എടുത്ത് ഇളക്കുക. (നാട്ടിൽ ആണെങ്കിൽ ഒരു തേങ്ങ പിഴിഞ്ഞ് അതിൻ്റെ മൂന്നാം പാലും രണ്ടാം പാലും ചേർക്കും വെള്ളത്തിന് പകരം) 

3 . ഒരു മീഡിയം തീയിൽ 10 മിനിറ്റ് ഇതിനെ വേവിക്കാൻ വയ്ക്കുക. ചീനച്ചട്ടി മൂടി വയ്ക്കുക. ഇടക്ക് തുറന്ന് ഇളക്കി കൊടുക്കുക. 

4 . മാങ്ങ വെന്തു കഴിയുമ്പോൾ അതിലേക്ക് ഒരു ടിൻ തേങ്ങാപാൽ ഒഴിച്ച് നല്ല പോലെ ഇളക്കി ചേർക്കുക. തീ കുറച്ചു കൂട്ടി വയ്ക്കാം (നാട്ടിൽ ആണെങ്കിൽ ഒന്നാം പാൽ ഒഴിക്കുക)

5 . നല്ല പോലെ തിളച്ചു കഴിയുമ്പോൾ തീ നിറുത്തി ചീനച്ചട്ടി മാറ്റി വയ്ക്കുക.

6 . താളിച്ചെടുക്കാനായി ഒരു ചെറിയ പാൻ എടുത്തു മീഡിയം തീയിൽ വയ്ക്കുക. ചേരുവ  2 – ൽ പറഞ്ഞിരിക്കുന്ന 2 ടേബിൾ സ്‌പൂൺ വെളിച്ചെണ്ണ എടുത്ത് ചൂടാക്കുക. ചൂടായി കഴിയുമ്പോൾ അതിലേക്ക് ഉലുവ, കടുക്, വറ്റൽ മുളക് (കടുക് പൊട്ടിയതിന് ശേഷം), കറി വേപ്പ് ഇല എന്നിവ ഇട്ട് കൊടുക്കുക. തീ നിറുത്തി, മാറ്റി വച്ചിരിക്കുന്ന മാങ്ങാക്കറിയിലേക്ക് ഒഴിച്ച് ഒരു മൂടിക വച്ച് അടച്ചു വയ്ക്കുക.

7 . മാങ്ങാക്കറി തയ്യാർ. ഇത് നല്ല കുത്തരി ചോറിനോടപ്പം കുറച്ചു തോരനും കുറച്ചു ബീഫ് ഉലർത്തിയതും കൂട്ടി അടിച്ചാൽ – കുശാൽ 🙂


Youth Corner

Global Warming – A colossal conundrum

-Gaurinanda Sudheesh

Climate change is a gargantuan predicament that concerns the whole world. It is also called global warming because of how it heats up the Earth. It is mainly caused by greenhouses gases being released into the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases are gases that trap heat. Which results in the planet warming up. Some of the greenhouse gases include water vapor, carbon dioxide, Methane, Nitrous oxide, and chlorofluorocarbons. Many different people help solve climate change, including Greta Thunberg, other teen activists, and even you.

At the United Nations Climate Action Summit on Monday, September 23, 2019, there were a lot of speeches made by world leaders but there was one that stood out. It was a speech made by Greta Thunberg a 16-year-old climate activist from Sweden. She tries to reduce climate change in many different ways. In the Newsela article Greta Thunberg “a bit surprised” to be Time Person of the Year Greta Thunberg states, “Every fraction of adegree matters.” This shows that Greta Thunberg believes that even if the climate goes up by a fraction of a degree, it will add up and affect us in the end. It is inspiring how Greta Thunberg motivates lots of people, both older and younger than her.

She gives speeches to world leaders in order to convince them to make their country eco-friendly. For a 16-year- old person to talk to world leaders much, much older than her, she must have a lot of bravery and courage. Most people probably wouldn’t be able to do that when they are 16.When she travels around the world to attend marches and give speeches, she goes by boat instead of a plane in order to reduce her carbon footprint on the world. She convinces others to think of global warming as their top concern. She even convinced her own mother, who was an actress, to go by boat or train to her performances, instead of flying in a plane. She attends many marches around the world that sheds light on global warming. She also convinced other people in Europe to ride on trains instead of planes. It was so powerful, that the movement is called the Greta Effect. These are some ways Greta Thunberg helps reduce climate change, but there are many more teen climate activists.

Greta Thunberg is a really inspiring climate activist, but there are many more young people who raise awareness of climate and reduce global warming. One is Isra Hirsi, 16, who is an American climate activist who co-founded and is the co-executive director of U.S. Youth Climate Strike. Founding a company at 16 is a great accomplishment. Another young person is Autumn Peltier who is an activist who believes in clean water, she is called “water warrior”. Another teen climate activist is Bruno Rodriguez who is 19, leader of the Fridays For Future Movement in Argentina. He was also invited to a climate summit at the United Nations. Helena Gualinga another youth climate activist. She also speaks in communities in the rain forest to raise climate change awareness. Emma Lim, an 18-year-old Canadian activist, is also raising awareness on climate change. She founded the#NoFutureNoChildren program. Now that we’ve looked at what activists do to solve climate change, let’s see what we can do.

Now you may be thinking about how you can help stop climate change or at least how you can reduce climate change. One way is by reducing how much carbon you let into the atmosphere. Now you may say, I don’t let carbon into the atmosphere, factories do that. Well, you do. Things you use every day let out carbon, automobiles, home heating, cooling systems, and electricity are only four of the many. It is truly shocking once we realize how much carbon we individually let into the atmosphere. The third thing you can do is recycle and reduce your plastic. You are probably tired of hearing this again and again, but plastic takes a long time to decompose, and it makes most of the items we use. So if we reduce the plastic we throw away into landfills, it saves the planet. We can also help by composting food waste. It gets rid of the food waste that gets into landfills, and it makes fertile soil for crops. Using renewable and eco-friendly energy resources, such as solar, wind, and hydroelectric energy helps the environment. Although these approaches may seem like they could never help solve this immense quandary, it actually does help reduce climate change.

As you can see many different people help solve climate change, Greta Thunberg and other teen activists help worldwide. But even you can do things that solve this colossal conundrum. There is no age limit to saving the planet, you can be old or young. In fact, most of the climate activists around the world are children or teenagers. Climate change could be reduced if everyone pitched in. Are you going to do something to save the planet today? From our community, we need more activists like Greta. This is the time to step up and save Mother Earth.


We would love for our youth members to collaborate and contribute. Please reach out to us if you would like to share any articles, join hands to support COMA’s Youth wing’s goal-Fund raising event or help educate to reduce the use of single use plastic.

This may be coming a little late, but better late than never ,isn’t it. With lot going on the current situation, excuse us for being late to put out this word.
We would like to thank one and everyone co-operated to make the COMAngam event a success. We saw all the great talents on the stage. What an evening it was. We would like to appreciate all the effort behind the curtains, that went into the making of this event. All of them played an important role in the success and organizing.
Smitha Sunil, Anju Anil Kumar, Aishwarya Arun managed the front desk. With all the time constraints we had, they did a wonderful job to make sure registration was completed by the planned time.
Janaki Nair, Arun Chand, & Manjula Nair planned, scripted and executed the compering, they spent an enormous amount of homework planning and scripting every inch of the presentation. Though we had to cut down a significant portion of it due to the time constraint, we owe our apology for that.
The duo, Dennis Thomas & Vinay Kumar handled the entire audio. Thank you very much for your effort & contributions. They were kind to accommodate both the team’s needs and demands. I am sure only they would know the limitation they had with the limited technology & equipment that we had for the night.
Biji Prakash,Saranya Anoop organized the awesome stage decoration.
We had Harı Naraynaswami, Veda Warrier, Rekha Nair, Veena Binoop on the Judge panel. We know how difficult a task was it to judge such excellent performances. We couldn’t have asked for better.
Most of the food committee members couldn’t enjoy the best of the performances that COMA ever saw, but they graciously worked to make sure we enjoyed the dinner too. Food was handled by the following
Praveen Kumar, Adit Anup, Anup Janardhanan, Ajoy Kumar, Ajayan Janardhanan, Sunil Warrier, Chris, Freneymon John, Kannan Radhakrishna Pillai, Thomas Oommen, Manoj Thomas, Gopinath Haridass, Jayakumar Madathil. We owe you one big THANK YOU for all your selfless effort.

Here is the photo link to the event COMANGAM – https://www.photosaga.photography/COMANGAM/

Password – 2020

February Newsletter

February – the shortest month of the year. Yet, this February comes with a bonus day – the Leap day also known as the Magical day. The science behind Leap day is to help keep us in sync with the seasons. There are a handful of leap day traditions around the world, such as La Bougie du Sapeur, a newspaper which only gets published every four years in France, street parades in Anthony, Texas, the self-described “leap year capital of the world,” or avoiding marriage in Greece, as it’s considered unlucky to tie the knot in a leap year. Whether you decide to adopt a leap day tradition or want to create one of your own, it is a special day worth celebrating.

So, are you ready to create a brand new Leap day tradition? Head to the Dublin Community Recreation Center on 29th and be part of the first event of the year – COMAngam! Event registration will be open between 5:00 PM and 6:00PM at the Venue.

COMA Youth Wing

Meet the newly elected President and Vice President of COMA Youth Wing!

Hello all, my name is Adit Anup. I am currently a junior at The Olentangy Orange High School. As the 2020 youth wing president, my responsibility is to engage all of the youth wing members in all of the COMA activities. This year, one of our goals for the youth wing is to organize a separate fundraising event with COMA for a good cause. We also would like to find ways to reduce COMA’s environmental footprint. I am excited to make the youth impact larger, and to start the decade strong.

Hi everybody! My name is Shraddha Krishnan and I am a freshman at Dublin coffman high school. I am very excited to be the Vice President of COMA Youth Wing! By working alongside with Adit, we will make sure that the goals of the Youth Wing this year are met with exceptional standards, and we will truly try our best to make it our best year! We have many amazing events planned, and we are glad to take you all on our journey!

Reflections or Ramblings (#5): Home – A nostalgic memory

-Hari Narayanaswamy

Please bear with me as I try to rediscover my old skills with Malayalam poetry. Here is one, penned fresh, reminiscent of the home we have left behind. Hope this poem’s ideas resonate with you, especially if you have a made a recent trip back home.

ഓർമ്മകളിൽ ഒരു നാട്

ഓർമ്മകളിലുറങ്ങിക്കിടക്കുമെൻ നാട്
പൊന്നോളങ്ങളിൽ ചാഞ്ചാടും കുട്ടനാട്
നറുവെയിൽ പുഞ്ചിരി തൂകും വഞ്ചിനാട്
കോടമഞ്ഞിൽ ‌മുഖമൊതുക്കും കുറുമ്പനാട്


കോരിച്ചൊരിയുന്ന വർഷ ഹർഷം
കത്തിയെരിയുന്ന ഗ്രീഷ്മ കോപം
സ്നേഹമോടെ പുണരുന്ന മഞ്ഞുകാലം
ഉള്ളിൽ തുടിയുയർത്തും വസന്തകാലം


ഇളംകാറ്റിലുലഞ്ഞാടും നെൽകതിർകൾ
പരല്മീൻ തെന്നും വയൽനീർചാലുകൾ
കളകളം കുതിച്ചെത്തും കാട്ടുപൂഞ്ചോലകൾ
സാനന്ദമൊഴുകും നറു പീയുഷവാഹികൾ


ഉറഞ്ഞുതുള്ളും തെയ്യവും തിറയും
ദേവിവാക്കോതുന്ന വെളിച്ചപ്പാടും
ഒറ്റക്കമ്പിയിലുയരും നാവോറു പാട്ടും
തുടികൊട്ടിപ്പാട്ടും പാണന്റെ പാട്ടും


എവിടേക്കു പോയ് മറഞ്ഞു നീ നാടേ
കാലം തീർത്തൊരിരുമ്പറയ്ക്കുള്ളിലോ?
ഏതു മന്ത്രത്താൽ നിന്നെ ഞാൻ ആവഹിയ്ക്കും
ഏതു ജാലത്താൽ നിന്നെ വീണ്ടെടുടുക്കും?

A singular solicitor at Target

– Nish Nishant

Nishant

Smitha and I were shopping at Target this past weekend, and as is the norm these days I was pushing little Rohan around in his stroller while Smitha went through the aisles picking, unpicking and then re-picking various items that seized her interest. I was mostly bored and lost in my thoughts when I was brusquely interrupted by an unwarrantedly loud “Are you from India?” from a formally dressed middle-aged Indian gentleman. I nodded my head in affirmation as curiously enough I did happen to be from India, though for the life of me I cannot figure out what gave that away!

The next few minutes he proceeded to converse with me about how lots of Indians were in the US these days on H1 Visas, how a lot of them went on to get Green Cards, how he recently moved to Atlanta from Arkansas, how he’d be delighted to introduce his wife to me (apparently she was elsewhere in the store at that time) and a few other topics that I don’t remember right now. All I remember thinking was how to get out of this conversation, especially since I had a sneaking suspicion that this guy was trying to sell some Amway like pyramid scheme on me. Fortunately Smitha called for me at that moment and I used this opportunity to say goodbye to him, but before I could do so he handed me his business card and asked me for mine. I did not have one with me and when I said that to him, he quickly produced a piece of paper and a pen out of nowhere – honestly, I didn’t see where he took it out from, he was like a conjurer – conjuring pen and paper out of thin air. With heavy misgivings I wrote my first name and phone number on his magically produced piece of paper and gave it to him and we parted.

Needless to say, Smitha gave me a quick firing-down for giving my number to a stranger, but fortunately enough she was soon distracted by a shelf containing the oddest looking ladies’ purses I have seen in a while. Normally this would have worried me since I definitely didn’t want her carrying around one of those revoltingly unattractive purses, but at that point I was just relieved to get out of her firing line. Just then I noticed a middle aged Indian woman conversing with a young, pretty and trendily dressed Indian girl (looked like she was in her early 20s). Now I don’t want to come across as someone who eavesdrops when 2 strange women are conversing in front of me, but I couldn’t help catch a few odd words here and there. It didn’t take me too long to realize that this woman was basically dishing out the same stuff to this girl that the strange guy had earlier dished out to me, and in a minute or so I saw the hapless girl hand over her phone numbers to this lady (I distinctly remember her explicitly specifying her land, work and cell numbers). I was certain that this middle aged lady was the earlier gentleman’s spouse and at that point it became increasingly evident that they were soliciting phone numbers from Indian looking folks.

My suspicions were confirmed a little later when we left Target with Smitha’s shopping picks for the day. The middle aged couple were walking together towards the parking lot, and most markedly they did not have a single item with them (forget a bag). They had basically spent close to an hour inside Target seeking out potential Indian victims (who they hoped would be new enough to the country) and collecting their information. I fully expect to receive a phone call this week inviting me to a gathering of some sort where this gathering would most definitely be a sales talk for some crappy pyramid scheme. Obviously I would get out of it with a clever excuse but I really do feel sorry for the pretty young girl who did seem naïve enough to fall into this trap. Oh well, I suppose she will eventually learn that strange Indian looking people approaching you in the middle of a store and asking you if you are from India are to be treated with the deepest mistrust and skepticism possible. Oh, and we are going to Target this evening – Smitha wants to return a hand bag that she took half an hour to select, apparently she did not like it when she looked at it this morning and so wants a new one. Sigh!

Article originally written 12 years ago.

പാരിജാത സുഗന്ധമുള്ള ഓർമകൾ

-Aravind Venugopalan

Arvind

Today is the last day of our home..

ഇന്ന് നമ്മുടെ മുതിയാറ വീടിന്റെ അവസാന ദിവസം.

ഞാൻ ജനിച്ചതും വളർന്നതും ഈ വീട്ടിലാണ്. എന്നെ ഞാനാക്കി മാറ്റിയ ഒരുപാട് ഘടകങ്ങളിൽ  സുപ്രധാനമായ ഒന്നാണ് ഈ കൊച്ചു വലിയ വീട്. നമ്മുടെ ചിന്താധാരയെയും സർഗവാസനയെയും  നാം വളർന്നു വരുന്ന വീടും ,അന്തരീക്ഷവും പ്രകൃതിയും ഒരുപാട് സ്വാധിനിക്കുന്ന ഘടകങ്ങൾ ആണ്. ആഴത്തിൽ വേരിറങ്ങിയ എണ്ണിയാലും തീരാത്ത ഓർമ്മകൾ ഉറങ്ങുന്ന ചുമരുകൾ ഇന്ന് കഴിയുമ്പോൾ ഇനിയില്ല . കാലപ്പഴക്കം കാരണം ചാഞ്ഞു തുടങ്ങിയ നമ്മുടെ വീട് നീ US ൽ നിന്നു വരുമ്പോൾ മിക്കവാറും ഉണ്ടാകില്ല കേട്ടോ നന്ദു എന്ന് അമ്മയും അച്ഛനും പറഞ്ഞതുകൊണ്ടു തന്നെ ഭൂമിയുടെ മറുവശത്തേക്ക് യാത്ര പോകുന്നതിന്റെ തലേന്ന് ഈ വീട്ടുമുറ്റത്തും തെക്കതിലും കുറച്ചധികം സമയം ചെലവഴിച്ച് ഊർജമുൾക്കൊണ്ടിരുന്നു.

അച്ഛന്റെയും അമ്മയുടേയും താരാട്ട് , അനുജൻ , എന്റെ ബന്ധുക്കൾ , ഗുരുക്കൻമാർ , എന്റെ ഗ്രാമത്തിലെ നാട്ടുകാർ , ഒരുപാട് വിശിഷ്ട വ്യക്തികൾ തുടങ്ങി എല്ലാം തന്നെ കയ്യിൽ ലഭിച്ചത് ഈ വീടിന് ഉള്ളിലാണ്.

വീടിന് തൊട്ടടുത്ത് തെക്കതും വലിയൊരു പാരിജാത മരവും ഉണ്ടായിരുന്നു. പുസ്തകങ്ങളോട് അടങ്ങാത്ത ഇഷ്ടമുണ്ടായിരുന്ന ഞാൻ ഒട്ടുമിക്കതും വായിച്ചു തീർക്കുന്നത് ആ പാരിജാതക്കൊമ്പിൽ ഇരുന്നിട്ട് ആയിരുന്നു. കൗമാരത്തിൽ വായിച്ചു തീർത്ത ചില പ്രണയ കഥകൾക്ക് ആ പാരിജാത പ്പൂവിന്റെ സുഗന്ധവും , വിവേകാനന്ദ ഗ്രന്ഥങ്ങൾക്ക് തെക്കതിലെ വിളക്കിന്റെ  നല്ലെണ്ണയുടെ ഗന്ധവും , രഹസ്യമായി സൂക്ഷിച്ച് വായിച്ചിരുന്ന മാജിക്ക് ബുക്കുകൾക്ക്  വീടിന്റെ മച്ചിന്റെ മാറാലയുടെ മണവും ആയിരുന്നു. എന്റെ ഉള്ളിലെ ഒരു മാജിക്കാരൻ രൂപപ്പെട്ടത് ഉറപ്പായും ഈ വീടിന്റെ അന്തരീക്ഷം കാരണം തന്നെയാണ്. യുക്തിവാദികൾക്ക് ചിരിക്കാൻ ഉള്ള വകയാണെങ്കിലും , എന്റെ ഉള്ളിൽ ഒരു മാജിക്ക്കാരനും ചിത്രകാരനും വേണ്ടുന്ന വികലമായ ഭാവനയും, നിഗൂഢതയോടുള്ള സ്റ്റേഹവും, നിദാന്ത നിശാന്ധതയും  എല്ലാം തന്നു പാകമാക്കിയതിൽ ഈ വീടും , വീടിനുള്ളിലെ വായുവും എന്തിന് മച്ചിലെ വലയിൽ തൂങ്ങിയാടുന്ന കുഞ്ഞു ചിലന്തിയും വരെ പങ്കു വഹിക്കുന്നു എന്നുള്ളത് ഒരു സത്യം മാത്രമാണ്.  

🙏

നമ്മുടെ പ്രദേശത്തെ എന്റെ പ്രിയപ്പെട്ട വിദ്യാലയമായ കൃഷ്ണപുരം KPMHS  ൽ നിന്നും പഠിച്ച് ഇറങ്ങുമ്പോൾ SSLC ക്ക് ഏറ്റവും കൂടുതൽ മാർക്ക് വാങ്ങിയതിനുള്ള പുരസ്കാരം കിട്ടിയപ്പോഴും , അതുപോലെ തന്നെ എൻട്രൻസ് പരീക്ഷയ്ക്ക് ലഭിച്ച റാങ്കിൽ മെറിറ്റിൽ അഡ്മിഷൻ ലഭിച്ചപ്പോഴും ഏകനായി വന്നു കുറച്ച് സമയം കണ്ണ് അടച്ച്  ആ വീട്ടിലോട്ട് വേരിറക്കിയ പാരിജാത മരത്തിന്റെ ചില്ലയിൽ ചാഞ്ഞ് സമയം ചിലവഴിച്ചിട്ടുണ്ടായിരുന്നു.

പിന്നീട് പുതിയ വീട് വച്ചു. താമസം പുതിയ വീട്ടിലോട്ടായി. എൻജിനീയറിംഗ് വിദ്യാഭ്യാസ കാലം. പക്ഷേ ഒരിക്കലും പഴയതുപോലെ ഞാൻ മിടുക്ക് കാണിച്ചില്ല. പഠനവുമില്ല , പാരിജാതവും ഇല്ല.

ഇന്ന് വളർന്ന് വലുതായ നമ്മുടെ നാട്ടിലെ എല്ലാ കുട്ടികളും 18 വർഷം മുന്നേ ജാതി മത രാഷ്ട്രീയ ഭേദമന്യേ  കളിച്ചും, കഴിച്ചും , ആടിയും , പാടിയും പഠിച്ചും ഒത്തു കൂടിയിരുന്നത് ഈ വീട്ടിൽ വച്ചു നടക്കുന്ന ബാലഗോകുലങ്ങളിൽ ആയിരുന്നു.. അവർ എത്ര വലുതായാലും ഏതു നിലയിൽ എവിടെ ആണെങ്കിലും ഈ വീടിനെയും നമ്മുടെ സ്നേഹത്തേയും ഓർക്കും. 

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ഒന്നു കൂടി ചേർക്കുന്നു : ഞങ്ങൾ മാറിയതിനു ശേഷം ആ വീടിനെ പരിപാവനമായി സൂക്ഷിച്ച ശ്രീകണ്ട സ്വാമികളേയും കുടുംബത്തെയും നന്ദിയോടെ ഓർക്കുന്നു.

ഇപ്പോൾ ഇത് എഴുതുമ്പോൾ അവസാനത്തെ പച്ച മൺ ഇഷ്ടികയും താഴെ വീണിട്ടുണ്ടാകും. പക്ഷേ നാട്ടിൽ വന്ന് ആ സ്ഥലത്ത് ഇനി നിൽക്കുമ്പോൾ കണ്ണുകൾക്ക് കാണാൻ കഴിയാത്ത ചുമരുകൾ അപ്പോഴും അവിടെ ഉണ്ടാകും. അത് വെറും മൺകട്ടയും ഇഷ്ടികയും ചേറും അല്ലായിരുന്നു എന്ന ബോധ്യവും …



Kids Corner

A Jellyfish Tale (Inspired from – The Little Mermaid)

– Gowri Nair

Meals on Wheels Volunteers

February 9, 2020 : Manoj Thomas, Julie Joseph, Melissa Thomas, Alison Thomas
Completed Rt 1600

January 26, 2020 : Thoma Pullumpallil, Ruben Varughese, Shome Thomas, Rianna Thomas
Completed Rt 1801

January 12, 2020 : Nish Nishant, Pradeesh, Anoop Nair
Completed Rt 1600






Upcoming Local Events




Sponsor Corner

Stepping into a new decade

This January we are stepping into a new decade. January is the month related to making resolutions and new beginnings. According to T.S.Elliot’s quote, “Every moment is a fresh beginning,” points that you can make goals and start new things at any moment in your life. Usually, 35% of people who make a New year’s resolution break them by the end of January and only 23% of people carry out their resolutions for the whole year. Making a resolution every month and executing it, is much better. Are you one of that 23%? Do let us know in the comments section of the COMA newsletter.

Hello from COMA EC team 2020,

Many thanks for letting us bring joy to you. This year we promise to work towards making us more stronger and closer, bring fun-filled gatherings to you. Of course nothing of which would be possible without the tremendous support and the community spirit from each one of you.

We also request every one of you to purchase your membership , which is our working capital to progress and maintain a place where we can re-invent & our kids can invent their Malayalee identity.

COMAngam 2020

We would like to take this opportunity to kick off this year’s events with a bash with our first event “COMAngam 2020”, on 29th of February.We are hoping to create some good memories on a date which comes once in 4 years. The venue of the event will be DCRC. The event will follow the popular format of having teams among us.
This time there will 2 teams each lead by 2 captains. We encourage everyone to reach out on coma.officials@gmail.com to get included in the team.Watch out for the registration opening notification on COMA’s social handles.We are thrilled to see you all there. 

Introducing the new Newsletter team

Smitha Sasindran

She is from Trivandrum and live in Powell with her husband Sanjay , daughter Saanvi and son Saatvik. She is very excited to be a part of newsletter team this year  and would  like to take this opportunity to connect with the community in creative and fun ways and hopefully provide valuable content along the way.

Nithya & Sreejith Menon

They both landed in the US in 2011 & made Columbus their home since then. They originally hail from Palakkad and Thrissur districts. They have two kids – Shriya and Pranav.

Ravi Hariharan

He is from Cochin and has been living in Columbus since 2011. Currently lives in Powell with his wife Ramya, daughter Sahana and son Saanav. He loves listening to songs, watching movies and playing cricket, tennis and ping pong.

Gaurinanda

Daughter of Sudheesh and Lekshmi is a 6th grader at John Sells Middle School. She has lived with her parents and her brother, Gautham in Dublin since 2016. Her hobbies are reading, writing and playing with her brother.

We have some new volunteers for Malayalam classes

Sophia Kurien

She is a Master’s degree holder in Software Engineering from TKM Institute of Technology & Science.She was working as an Assistant Professor at the department of Computer Scinece at MBITS college Kothamangalam for 4.5 years before coming to the USA .

Veena Binoop

Veena is from Aluva, Ernakulam. She completed her Masters in Malayalam from Mahatma Gandhi university and was working as teacher in Christava Mahilalayam public school till mid 2017 before moving to Columbus. She is living in Brittonwoods Dublin with her husband Binoop and two sons Devarsh & Aaarush. She loves reading, cooking, hanging out with friends & family and watching movies.

Volunteers for our Meals On Wheels

January 26,2020 Thomas Pullumpallil,Reuben Varughese,Shome Thomas,Rianna Shome

January 12,2020 Nish Nishant, Pradeesh, Anoop Nair

December 22,2019 Joseph Abraham, Nancy Joseph, Joshua Abraham, Rachael Abraham

December 8,2019 Valsan Palika, Gopi Haridass, Maya Achen

November 24,2019 Nish Nishant, Austin Pereira, Ceby Philip

November 10,2019 Sunil Balkrishnan, Jerry Zachariah, Vipin Nair

Your dedication and compassion should be well praised!

Obituary

Shantha Gopalakrishnan, 75, wife of P.G.Gopalakrishnan, former chairman of Institute of Engineers (India) died in Kochin on January 8th 2020. She belonged to the Kettidathil family, Mayyanad, Kollam. She is survived by son Vikas Gopal (Columbus Ohio), daughter-in-law Arati Krishna, and grandchildren Varun Gopal and Karun Gopal.

We convey our heartfelt condolences to the grieving family . Please keep them in your prayers.