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Call me old fashioned or ignorant, but I am well aware that I am not entirely cues in to this feminism thing. I am female. I am a housewife, a mountaineer, a professional in multiple areas at my whim. They are all aspects of me. Why should it be that my being a housewife is wrong or makes me weaker in anyway? For that matter, why is there a need to have an exclusive label, if equality and empowerment is the idea?

Does being protected make something stronger? Is that equality? I think feminists are the biggest danger to women power, because they demand that separate platform, rather that empowering women to simply be themselves and powerful.

I think that this whole thing is so hyped and people are so aggressive about it, that all sense of perspective is lost. The original idea of setting women free from social pressure has now given was to the pressure of expecting a woman to reject all that is "traditionally" allotted a feminine connotation. That's plain silly.

No matter how many women burn their bras, its going to be a hell of a long time before there are as many female construction workers as males and if it happened, it would be plain stupid and a mismanagement of human resources.

Rejecting traditional female roles and beginning afresh is like reinventing the wheel. I am a woman, and only one who doesn't understand people at all will imagine me to be weak. That strength didn't come from competing with males or insisting that I be the same as them. It came from being myself and if some expectations crashed, either from the traditional end or the feminity end..... *shrug*

Males don't get PMS. Women have multiple orgasms. On the other hand, orgasm for a male is guaranteed. Men have more muscle mass than women, women do have breasts, and I'm not even going to get into the psychological differences. Just grab a copy of the Mars and Venus book.

I can understand how it is important for a woman not to be oppressed and how it is a violation of her personal rights. What about the rights of those who are expected to accept women even where they don't believe it works?

I think woman power is not about "Equal-to-man" power. Why use men as a scale anyway? Are they an ideal? I think its not about woman power even. It is about being yourself and having the guts to go through with it, whether you are male or female. There is no point dragging gender in as a measure while claiming that the ideal is removing it from the public domain.

So people, figure out what exactly it is that you are trying to say. And yes, this is a kind of direct response to a "burn-the-bra" type who had the guts to look down her nose at me for being a housewife. I am a housewife, because I don't want to land up for work everyday. What's more, I have managed to figure out a life for myself where I can work 10 days a month at the most and afford to live happily.

I refuse to believe that my feminity requires me to slog 30 days a month to prove I'm powerful. If I can't ensure my freedom, what power do I have?


Yesterday, an unknown, aged housewife in one of the many buildings in Mumbai died. Virtually unknown to many, and the love of a devastated few, this was the typical loving grandmother and charming Indian housewife - the stuff indian dreams are made of. She left behind an aged husband, a son and daughter (both married) and three grand daughters from them in terms of immediate family, and countless more who had been enriched by her cheerful and affectionate presence in their lives. She was my grandmother.

I dedicate this portrait to the countless of beloved grandparents everywhere, and hope that their loved ones manage to tell them how precious they are, before it is too late.

She had led a difficult life. Leading the perpetually nomadic life of an armyman's wife, and striving to care for her children, she would have settled afte her husband retired, only to be faced with a new adventure in life - her first granddaughter - me. With both parents working shifts, I grew up with my grandmother and was soon joined by my uncle's daughters and the three of us grew in a world that childhood memories are made of, when its a riot of three kids, being looked after by doting grandparents.

Memories flood our minds as we struggle to comprehend this loss. Her unending enthusiasm for cricket, delight over new clothes and matching accessories she painstakingly managed, "celebrations" in the local restaurant, where all she would eat was the ordinary idlis, an aunt orphaned at an early age she also played mother too, her group of friends in the building she stayed in (ranging from 10 to 70 years of age), evenings spent in the society park, bullying three nauthgy girls to study, ......

My granfather seems lost. His constant companion of over 60 years, mother of his children, grandchildren, devoted wife, and old-age companion is gone. He still hadn't understood it completely. He is silent most of the time, and when he speaks, he laughs and jokes like nothing has happened.

Yesterday, she was frail and still. Gone. our only satisfaction was that she had met all of her countless loved ones within her last month of life and was very happy.

I miss her, and wish that she had lived more, but that is my selfishness. I would never want her to leave me no matter how long she lived. It was time for her to go, and for us to face the terrible emptiness in the home with that one departure. I hope that the ones left behind find the strength to move on. I hope my grandfather survives this tremendous shock.

Mrs. Nalini Godbole, my beloved grandmother is no more, like the many other grandmothers who are missed desperately. I only hope that the grandmothers still with us know of our love for them and die as fulfilled as she was able to.