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Sunday, September 24, 2017

Royale Atmos – Environment friendly paint


“O-two, Go out and play in fresh air.” I asked my little cousin who was playing brain vita.

“Sis, do you want me to play in air pollution? Or do you want me to play football wearing mask to protect myself from pollution. Moreover, playing in polluted air will lower my I Q level and I won’t be able to win more games in brain vita.” He replied.

“Then, you must know that inside home pollution is 5 times higher than outside and sometimes even more.”

“O, really!” He exclaimed and moved one marble on the board.

“Even, in this room you will be surprised to know that a pungent smelling dangerous pollutant is found and its sources are pressed wooden furniture, cupboards, drapes, foam insulation and carpet. Its name is formaldehyde.”

“And how does casual-dehyde pollutes air?” He giggled.

“Huh?”

“Dressed up in ‘3S’ – shirt, snickers and slippers!” He chuckled.

“No, dressed in female attire - sweatshirt, skirt and sandals.”

He laughed aloud and I smiled.

“Come with me, I will show you air pollutants in the kitchen.”

He put his game on the table and accompanied me to the kitchen. He told. “In the kitchen, gas stove is a major air pollutant.”

“Besides that unvented gas from kerosene heater and wood stove emits carbon monoxide.”

“Is carbon monoxide sister of carbon dioxide?” He inquired with a fun in his voice.

“Carbon monoxide is formed when there is not enough oxygen to produce carbon dioxide. Carbon monoxide is colourless, odourless, tasteless, and highly toxic. It is more harmful to humans and animals as compared to carbon dioxide. It causes dizziness, nausea, headaches and sometimes death.”

“Dangerous sis!”

We were standing in the kitchen and I explained further to him, “Nitrogen oxide is also produced from the same sources as carbon monoxide and harms human body similarly.”

“Dangerous bro!”

“Radon is a radioactive gas which is colourless, odourless and tasteless enters silently like thieve in our homes from the surface beneath and from water sources. We are totally unaware if we are inhaling unsafe air.”

“Dangerous DAD!”

“Well ventilation reduces the production and hazards of dangerous family.”

“As soon as I entered the kitchen then my head started aching. It must be because of the presence of these poisonous gases.” He put his left hand on his head.

“Let us open the windows and doors for proper ventilation.”

“Are cockroach killers the source of air pollution?” He pointed out at two bottles placed in the corner of the kitchen.

“Yes, insect killers are source of air pollutants. After spraying, windows should be left open for some time. Let us move to the drawing room and find out sources of air pollutants present there.”

We moved to the left and there was a huge drawing room well equipped with all the modern facilities.

“Aladin’s magic carpet!” He giggled.

I noticed that it was blue coloured carpet with intricate designs woven on it. He sat down on the carpet and ordered, “Fly Carpet Fly and take me to a place where there is no air pollution.” He repeated it several times. When the carpet did not move, he concluded, “There is no place now left in this world without air pollution or my drawing room is the safest place.”

I smiled and explained, “Plastic side tables, chairs or any other plastic products and carpets are the source of styrene which is carcinogenic.”

“To prevent it we should buy more eco-friendly products.” He suggested. I planted a kiss on his left cheek.

I further explained, “Sofa foam, wooden table, fireplace and panels also cause indoor air pollution.”

“We frequently used air fresheners, candles and agarbattis for fragrance. They also add a little to the air pollution.”

“True. You are my intelligent little brother!”

“ Let’s go to the bathroom and I want to show you something new. Sis, come fast!” He hold my hand tightly and almost dragged me. We took to the right, passed from a gallery and at the end; there was a combined toilet and bathroom.

“You have to come inside to see that.” He left my hand and hurriedly went inside.

Curiously, I entered and found he was standing near a handmade devil.

“I made this dustbin. I took a empty cardboard, pasted the coloured paper cuttings to give it a look of a devil.”

“It is very beautiful.”

“ If you press this wooden piece.” He pointed towards the base of dustbin. “Then the devil will open its mouth.” He took out a small piece of toffee wrapper from his pocket and put it in devil’s mouth. “Now, you can try.”

I smiled and said, “Floor tile, pipe insulation and vinyl ceiling are made up of asbestos. The lose fibres of asbestos are hazardous to health. They can cause cancer. This pollution can be prevented by buying good quality asbestos products and by constructing and managing them with expert’s hands.”

“Oh my Gosh! The water pipe started leaking again and fungus has started growing.” He exclaimed.

“The mold, mildew and insects increase air pollution inside house. They cause irritation to eyes, throat and nose. This can be prevented by closing any leakage (as biological sources grows more in moisture), by cleaning the area and by keeping it dust free.” I sighed and continued, “Chloroform which causes cancer is present in chlorine treated hot water showers.”

“I will smell and if it smells like chloroform, I will not bathe.” He winked.

“Naughty boy!” I drew his attention towards a deodorant placed on a glass shelf. “1,1,1 trichloroethane which destroys ozone layer (2 -6 miles away from earth) is produced from aerosol sprays. It is always better to buy non aerosol sprays.”

“ha ha. How wrong I am to think that I can fire aerosol spray to one foot but now I come to know that I can fire it as far as 2 - 6 miles!”

A car honked and he rushed towards the garage saying, “Wow! Papa, came home early today.” I followed him.

He was disappointed to find that the car was not theirs and it stopped at the next door.

To divert his mind I pointed towards a genset and asked, “Do you use it quite often?”

“Not much. We have back up of solar battery. In case of emergency only we use it as it causes air pollution.”

I saw a small container of paint thinner in the corner of wooden shelf. “Paint strippers and thinners contain methylene chloride which is a volatile liquid. It causes nerve disorder and diabetes. The containers should be properly sealed to avoid evaporation. They should be brought in the required amount only. Their storage should be avoided.”

“Oh that! I have to paint a wooden board for my school project. It will be finished in that project. We are standing from a long time and my legs are aching now.”

“Let us go to bedroom and take some rest.”

He lied down on bed and I opened the cupboard to take out my bag from it. A sweet smell entered my nose. I told him, “Tetrachloroethylene is ‘dry cleaning fluid’. It’s sweet odour fumes on clothes can cause nerve disorder, damage to liver and kidney.”

“Riya, my classmate is just like tetrachloroethylene.”

“How?” I asked with bewilderment in my voice.

“Sis, she is very cute, her voice is sweet but she is idiotic. The more I converse with her, more damage I cause to my brain nerves.”

“Para-dichlorobenzene is used as air fresheners, disinfectants, pesticide, deodorants and moth balls. It is colourless solid with odours and a long term exposure can cause cancer.” I drew the structure of para-dichlorobenzene on the paper and showed him.

“There is a plump boy in my class, his tummy is just like a benzene ring and he farts every now and then. Sitting close to him for long time will definitely put me in trouble.” He laughed aloud on his own joke. “Sis, you explained so nicely about air pollutants but don’t you think that you forget to tell me something?”

“Like what?” I inquired.

“VOC? What’s that? Very Obedient Child like O-two!!!” He laughed. It was like a soothing temple bell pealing and echoing.

 “VOC’s means Volatile Organic Compounds. As the name indicates, they are organic compounds that are volatile. They evaporate at room temperature causing air pollution. Formaldehyde, methylene chloride, tetrachlroethylene and paradichlorobenzene are all VOC’s. Paints, pesticides, glue, printers, photocopiers, permanent markers and certain building materials are the source. To prevent air pollution from VOC’s one should buy ‘Low VOC’s’ or ‘No VOC’s’ products. Only the quantity needed should be purchased from the market and the storage of VOC’s at home should be avoided. They should be used in well ventilated places.”

He closed his nose with a hanky and said, “From where this foul smell is coming?”

“May be this rat farted.” I saw it crawling on the bed’s headrest.

“It is not a rat, sis. It is guinea pig. Its name is Oink.”

“Oink’s dander has fallen on the headrest.”

“Does my lovely pet causes air pollution?” He asked with a surprise.

“Yup. Respirable particles are suspended particles, which we inhale with air. They can be from pollens, pets, dust mites, cooking smoke particles and tobacco smoke that can causes respiratory problems and eye irritation. They can be controlled by proper ventilation, cleaning and maintenance.”

 “A week back, we had a family meeting on the prevention of indoor air pollution. We decided to clean air by growing plants that clean air more like aloe vera, peace lily, bamboo palm, snake plant, spider plant and garden mum in waste and unused vessels. Father quitted smoking, mother stopped using sprays to kill insects and I stopped playing outdoors.” He said with a little wink.

“Huh?”

“There was no time to play as I have to work harder to clean air. In the meeting, I explained them about Royale Atmos, the revolutionary paint that purifies air. I with papa went to the nearest Asian paints showroom and brought Royale Atmos paints for our house. It was I who decided which shade of paint to be picked for which room. Out of more than 1750 shades of Royale Atmos, to chose the desired shade was a challenging task for a little boy. I lifted those heavy paint buckets to the car and from car to house. You will be surprised to know that I painted my room myself.”

“Wow! You painted your room so well.”

“Thanks! Thanks!! After painting the house with Royale Atmos paints we solved the indoor pollution problem to a great extent. It has a carbon activated technology which helps in trapping formaldehyde molecule and breaking it into smaller molecules that are harmful.”

“How?”

“Don’t you watch T.V.? Haven’t you seen the advertisement in which Deepika Padukone wore mask everywhere except in her house as her house was painted with Royale Atmos.”

“Ya. I want to paint my house with Royale Atmos.”

“To breath in pure air at home, you must.” What have you drawn on these sheets? Show me.” On seeing me holding some drawing sheets, he asked.

“I was thinking for writing a post on my blog about air pollution, its causes and possible solution.”

“Let us make a video. I will shoot it for you. We will share in on Facebook for our relatives, neighbours and friends.”

“That’s a great idea. Let us mix my knowledge and your knowledge for better solutions.”

After watching it, he said, “What a boring video! In school, when teacher showed such boring videos then I go to sleep with my eyes wide open!!”

“But how can you sleep with your eyes wide open?” I desperately wanted to know this secret.

“Practice, Sis, Practice. Practice makes a child perfect!”

“O brother!”

“By the way, when your are planning to paint your house with Royale Atmos?”

“Next weekend, I will be free. But which shade should I chose of blue colur as it is my favourite? I will need you valuable advice in selecting the correct shade.”
“Sure. Any time, sis, anytime for you!” He gently hold my hand and said, “Aladin’s carpet didn’t fly and stayed in my drawing room because of Royale Atmos paint on the walls. My drawing room has the purest air. Now air is so clean that you can do yoga indoors.”

I spread the durrie, sat down cross-legged and took a deep breath. I said, “You are the oxygen of my life.”

“That’s why my parents named me O-two.”




Saturday, September 16, 2017

Daily dose of exercise, MY way!


Who does not want to be healthy? Nevertheless, where is the time to do daily dose of exercise amidst the busy schedule. Rushing to office, managing house, looking after kids and taking care of elderly person is really challenging and to find time of oneself is close to impossible. Twenty-four hours seem to be a less time! Everyone yearns for an extra hour in a day for doing exercise and for taking care of health. Not possible!!



What is achievable is to find time somewhere in between the hectic daily routine. But where to fit this schedule? I can’t wake up early in the morning as I wake up twice or thrice at night to attend to my mother-in law who is diabetic, blind (lost her eye sight due to diabetes) and kidney patient. I can’t do the exercise while watching T.V. as my child is studying and he finds it disturbing. I can’t even think of doing it in kitchen while cooking as it is bit congested and moreover I and my husband both cook together with no space left for movements in exercise. I can’t even think of going in a park or joining class as my mother-in-law needs my constant care. Above all I am lazy to do exercises, yoga or any physical work; maybe that is the reason my mind is finding so many excuses for not doing exercise regularly.



In the evening, my husband manages home, I go to  market to buy vegetables, fruits and other grocery items. As we stay on fourteenth floor, I take a lift to get down. One day, while I was waiting for the lift, I came across this video.


I loved the idea of two minutes exercise for whole body. The lift door opened and I got into it. I couldn’t resist myself from trying this exercise. Surprisingly after that it become my daily routine to do two minutes exercise in the lift. A funny but a healthy way to live life!



Mark Twain has truly said that the only way to keep your health is to eat what you do’nt want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not. For #ApneTareekeSeHealthy I am eating lots of salad (to reduce my weight) which I hate to eat, I am drinking litres of milk (to keep my bones strong) which I do not relish and I am doing my daily dose of exercise in the lift (to keep fit and to save time) which I am not fond of. Now, I am happy and contented as I changed my life by making small changes.



I am joining Saffola #ApneTareekeSeHealthy initiative and sharing my ways of being healthy in association with BlogAdda.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Beauty Vs Ugliness


While walking on the side road, I noticed a car stopped on the other side of  the road. The father (I assume) sitting on driver seat drew the kid’s attention who was sitting on the next seat towards something on the trees may be. The kid searched for a few moments and then looked with surprise. The view brought a big smile on the kid’s face.



I heard some loud rasping screeches. Although loud braying were not at all pleasing to the ears but I was sure that such a high pitched voice must be of some big birds. I could recognise most of Indian bird’s voices but they were new to my ears. I hurried towards that spot, looking in that direction to get a glimpse of a surprise. In between the trees, in a far off balcony, I saw two long-tailed blue and yellow caged macaws. The two birds were huge, magnificent and vibrant. I was mesmerised with the view till two ugly crows came from nowhere and sat on the balcony railing.



“Their beauty caged them whereas their ugliness freed them.” I thought.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

On my father's death


“Chandrika, forget everything as if nothing has happened.” One of my elderly relative tried to console me when I was crying uncontrollably on my father’s death.

“I can’t forget him.” I replied amidst of my sobs.

“You have spent so much time with him. He taught you so many things. You have lots of sweet memories to remember. But look at me, I have never seen my father.”

I stopped crying and looked at him with a surprise.

He told, “When I was one and a half year old my father died. I couldn’t remember his face.”

“You must be having his photograph or portrait.”

“We were not rich enough to afford them therefore there is a vast blankness for me on remembering him.”
“One person, Mr. ‘X’ was walking bare feet on hot summer. His feet were burning and he was cursing God because God had made him so poor that he couldn’t even afford a pair of shoes for himself. On the way, after sometime he met a person who didn’t have lower limbs and was creeping on the hot road with the help of his hands while his hips were rubbing against hot road with his every move. Mr. ‘X’ thanked God for giving him feet.” I recalled the story and wiped my tears.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Courier-wala


“Madam, courier-wala is coming.” Security guard informed me.

“Fine.” I said and put the receiver down.

It was hot and humid. To quench my thirst, I took out a cold water bottle from refrigerator and pored the water in a glass. While I took the first sip, the door bell rang. I hardly drank two more sips then it rang again. I put the glass unfinished and almost ran to open the door for impatient courier-wala.

He handed the courier to me. I signed the receipt of courier and returned back paper and pen to him.

“Do you send couriers?” He asked.

“No. Not much.” I was bit shocked with his blunt question.

“I can do the free pick up of courier from your house. We have a shop near to your society. Please note down the address of my shop ................ and phone number................ Whenever you need it just call me. My number is......................and my name is......................Generally a person provide the service for only one courier company. But we provide service for all - First Flight, Blue Dart, DTDC,..................You name it and we have it.”

“Thanks!” I ended his endless marketing.



“He didn’t have the time to wait patiently till I attended him but he had plenty of time to do marketing of his recently started business. Bahoot aage jayega ye banda to! (He will reach for the sky)” I thought.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Ten bonus years


In 2007, my father fell sick. He needed constant care. Therefore, I left my profession to take care of him. My family members and I took good care of him. He followed all the precautions, diet and exercises suggested by the doctors. He disciplined his life as per the doctor’s advice. With the result, he lived happily for ten more years.



While he was recovering, I attended to him as well as family business. In the beginning, I did not know the ABC of business, money management and financial transactions. I was naive. 



While looking after him, taking care of his smallest needs, we spent a lot of time together. During these years, I got his full attention and time. I learned from him not only budgeting, saving, investing, spending, money making and business tactics but also much more about life.



Those ten years were the bonus years! And the best time of my life!!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Goodbye PAPA!


My father, Dr. Madan Lal Saini was the most hardworking person I ever knew! He worked near about 18 hours per day. He never took any break from work. In his life, there were no holidays. Even during festive time like Diwali or Holi he was busy working while the rest of the world was busy in enjoying lights and colours. In spite of whatever happens in the world, he strictly followed his working routine.



His hard work made him successful in academics as well as in business. He retired as Professor of Plant Breeding, CCS Harynana Agricultural University, Hisar. Earlier in his academic career, he was a bright student and always secured excellent marks in his school and college time. He was awarded Dr. V.K. Kashyap Gold Medal in recognisition of the best Ph.D. research worker for the year 1974. He worked on genetic improvement of gaur crop for about 12 years and remained associated in development and release of eight important varieties of guar. He was awarded ‘The Rafi Ahmed Kidwai Memorial Prize for Agriculture Research for the biennium 1982-83 for outstanding contribution in the field of plant breeding and genetics. Associated with wheat varitety WH542 and had been awarded ICAR Team Award for Multi-disciplinary Research in Agriculture and Allied Sciences for the Triennium 1994-96.



In the field of teaching, he guided four M.Sc. and seven Ph.d. students. He was awarded Best Teacher Award of the Department of Plant Breeding for the year 1998. He also received The Outstanding Teacher Award, a national award in teaching for the Biennium 1998-99 for outstanding contribution in the field of Plant Breeding and Crop Improvement by the ICAR.

He was selected for the prestigious B.P. Pal National Environment Fellowship Award for Biodiversity for the year 2002 by Government of India, Ministry of Environment and Forests, New Delhi to work on grasses and medicinal plants in arid region.



He wrote three books namely ‘Plant Breeding and Crop Improvement’ Vol I and Vol II and Practical Manual on Plant Breeding. He wrote near about 200 papers including research papers, review articles and popular articles.



In business, he was keenly interested in introducing new technologies, starting new projects and launching new schemes for the betterment of society.



Surprisingly he followed his working schedule punctually even after he fell sick. His poor health could not restrict his working hours. In the last days of his life, he was discussing business, suggesting innovative ideas to make money and guiding me to tackle problems.



He led a very simple and disciplined life. He was kind, honest and was always ready to help everybody in need.



With moist eyes, I said ‘Goodbye’ to him last night.


Photo : While searching album for his photo, I found the pics were mainly about taking awards, giving talks or researching in the field/ lab. There were hardly any photos with friends or relatives. So here is one taking The Outstanding Teacher Award with Mr. L.K. Advani.