Archive for December, 2011


Did your family have one of these?  We had the mustard yellow (which still lurks somewhere in my parents’ attic) – and oh, the memories – to India, to weddings…

Like everyone didn’t know what was in there.


No, not mine…my kids – and they relished all 3 1/2 hours of it (spread over 2 evenings).  I underestimated the endless learning opportunities a film like Jodhaa Akbar presents – however “fictitious” of an historical film it is.  But for 2 evenings, we were transported to 16th century Mughal India – to a time when, to the bewilderment of my kids, there were no cars or trains, telephones or electricity.  They got glimpses of elephant transport, palanquins and of glorious Indian palaces.  Although my 3-year-old daughter was most interested in the colours of Princess Jodhaa’s outfits and in categorizing each character as either “good” or “bad,” my older son delved into the story.

Here are some vocabulary words we learned from our weekend Bollywood-fest:

Akbar (and the fact that he was a Muslim Mughal Emperor)
Rajputana (and where the current Rajasthan is on the map)
War (though we fast forwarded through the 2 battle scenes to avoid the violence, we did discuss what a “war” is)
Allah (as in this is who Muslims pray to)
Tax (as in the Pilgrim Tax on the Hindus, which Akbar reportedly abolished)
Duel (as in the one between Akbar and Sharifuddin)
Howdah (Princess Jodhaa’s mode of transportation)
Sufi Saints

And so my kids begin their Bollywood journey.  They’ve already asked me for a next movie…I’ll have to give this some thought.

Author: Aruna

I am at the gym the other day, with a back issue of The New Yorker – I see a poem entitled “Dothead” written by someone with an Indian name (Amit Majmudar) – so of course I’m going to read it.

Well yes, I said, my mother wears a dot…”  The last few lines are (for lack of a better word) awesome – with a reference to Nataraja.

Full poem here.  Maybe I’ll start sending my kids to school with a ketchup packet.

Image from our Bindi Baby Books

Newer Entries