Life with a Twin

Celebrating our special day, it is nice to reflect on the good, the bad and the fun part of living with a twin.

Finally I ‘get it’.

“Keep your things to yourself”.   A firm ‘in control’ voice interrupts my reading on the sofa.

I look up.  Drama Queen is holding my wavy metal Alice Band outstretched in her hand and drops it on the sofa next to me.

“Where was it?”  (me, nonchalantly)

“On the ground next to the bed!”  (You know the way that’s said right?  !!)

“Aaah … must have fallen off when I slept”.   (still trying to be non-chalant)

No response.  She has gone back to her room.  I turn back to my book.  Then stop.  Did it fall off or did I take it off? Cannot really remember but either way, I am supposed to “keep my things to myself.”

I look up to think about that one and see things scattered all over the ground in the lobby in front of me.  Computer cases, cables, magazines, newspapers, dustbins.  A pink dustbin brush grins at me.  I am sure if I go to the bedroom the hair band will be the smallest thing on the floor. I look at the pink dustbin brush again grinning that he/she has all the right to sit on the middle of the floor with all the other things.    My hair band can’t.  I grin back :)

Suddenly I burst out laughing.  I just got it!!

All my stuff is supposed to sit neatly or otherwise, packed into one place.  All the other space around the house that I walk around in … that I move and ‘be’ in is only for that.  To walk around etc.  The house does not belong to me and I can’t mess it up like I would do in my house :(


It will save me stress and it will save her stress.

So until I complete my repairs and move back home, all I’ve got to do is just remember to be more methodical.  And pigs will fly but at least let’s try !!

So Let’s rap to the future… 

Alice Band

The errant Alice Band !

I found your hair-band on my bedroom floor

Evidence that you’ve been here before

And soon I won’t get waves of missing you anymore

You are like a Tsunami tide at my door!!!

(Ed Sheeran modified!)

Now for the other side of the coin  :)


My sister is the sweetest thing

You ever did see

She rants and raves and scolds and yells

But a tender heart has she.

She noticed that I was having

A problem with my pills

Keeping them in one place being

An added stress to my ills

So when she saw a pillbox neat

She put it in her cart

‘At least this may help my sis’ she thought

‘Take care of her weak heart!!!’


Happy twin

Once upon a time ….

In a little pearl shaped island called  Serendipity far, far, away in the Indian Ocean  – there lived a beautiful young lady who was so accomplished in sports that she was the talk of the town.  People would come from miles around to see her breaking records and winning trophies.

Now at the same time there lived a handsome young man with a charming smile and an even more charming manner who was so popular that he was asked to be Master of Ceremonies for many lavish celebrations.

It so happened that one fine night the young lady too was invited to one of these fairy tale celebrations.  The moment the young man saw her dancing, he was so enthralled with her that he left his duties of EMCEE to dance with her all night.

The Story begins here

That is the beginning of Our Story.

Very soon the young man and the young lady got married and very soon after that the young lady had some good news for her young husband. They were both over-joyed and made all preparations to welcome a new little baby.

Mum and Dad wedding 2           Mum and Dad

When the big day arrived, the young man could not stop pacing the floor. He was worried for his wife but also thinking of all the wonderful things he would do with his little baby.  As he was pacing the floor in the hospital, the doctors came out and gave him the news that men all over the world hear every day –  but it was the very first time that he was hearing it. He was now a Daddy to a little girl. He was overjoyed.  But the doctor continued speaking in a sombre voice.

The young man’s heart skipped a beat.  Through a haze he heard words like premature babies and simultaneous heart beats  … and then the incredible  “there is another baby on the way!”  Imagine the young man’s joy. Two instead of one!!   His first crazy thought was that he has to buy a second crib.  Without stopping for a moment he rushed out of the hospital to purchase one.

The little ones could not however use the cribs immediately. They were both so very tiny – 2 ½ pounds and 3 pounds – that they had to remain in hospital for some time.

But when they were finally brought home,  what a celebration there was.  The young man and the young woman decided the first one must have a gypsy heart – for she was so eager to travel from the comfort of the womb to the world outside – so they called her Romany which means gypsy. The second one looked less robust – fragile like the petals of a rose so they called her Rosanne.

Being devout Catholics they also chose a saint’s name for their little girls.  The first born was named after St. Francis – a name also shared by both parents, whilst they chose ‘Therese (whose feast is on October 3rd) for the other little girl. .

And so it was that Gypsy Romany and Rambling Rose entered the world 61 years ago today.

How they have spent these years is a story for another day.  For the present we celebrate their lives and the many graces showered on them :)

Celebration time !

Romany (pink) and Rosanne  – taken June 2015  in Prague

Kindness to four footed ‘fellow travellers’

Sights like this – two guys having their breakfast under the shade of a tree and sharing it with our four footed fellow travellers, really brings a smile to your heart and beauty into a Mundane Monday.

It is giving that we receive ...

It is giving that we receive …

I know the photo is not great – yes, taken from behind the wheel :) but the scene was so beautiful I felt I would share it for the Mundane Monday Challenge  to find beauty in the things around us.

Tips for Photography, Prayer … and Life.

I have been participating in a Mundane Monday Challenge created by Jithin @ Photrablogger

 “to find beauty in almost everything. The challenge is simple :  find beauty in everyday mundane things, capture the beauty and upload the photographs.”

I came across this during my ‘retreat’ time today and would like to share with all those participating in the challenge.  It is a great tip on AWARENESS AND PAYING ATTENTION. 

Advice That Applies in More Than One Context

photographer in silhouette

My advice: Slow down. Pause to savor the moment. Breathe deeply. Think about how things smell, what the air feels like on your skin, and look at what you’re seeing: the colors, the shapes, the shadows. Think about how it came to be.

Sound like advice for prayer? It certainly could be applied to that, but the advice comes from Josh Noel in an article on taking amazing travel photos.

At this time of year, when many of us are looking forward to summer vacations, the advice to slow down and pay attention is well-timed—and appropriate for both photography and a life of prayer.

And if you get that great travel shot in a prayerful moment, please share it with us at our sister blog, Picturing God.

Bury me in ….

Seems like a strange topic to write on … but a post by Annarashbrook on the death of her friend Paggy set me thinking.

Anna’s question on the fate of our possessions, reminded me of one of my pet peeves … how I wish to be buried !! :)

But let me deal with Anna’s question first.  I have a twin plus two siblings who have six children between them.  Since my twin and I have no direct heirs, we leave everything in trust for ‘the six’ to share as they think fit. ‘Everything’ for me consists of a property and some ‘investments’ to live on since I retired.  Not a fortune but sufficient for the day …

I have no idea how my other day to day possessions will be disposed of.  I do not have much in any case except books, books and more books – theology mainly.  Maybe they might give them to a library or keep them as keepsakes of their aunt, who they teased would be a ‘popess’ :)  … MAYBE !!!

Now to my idiosyncrasy – my anathema of local tradition to bury females in a long dress with socks on!  I do not wear long dress and can’t stand to think of being so dressed with white socks.  Uggghs!  But I am yet to see a female corpse in – denims or pants. (It did make me wonder how they dress women in other countries?)

So I have said I would like to be dressed in a sarong: viz. a couple of yards of cloth wrapped round me somewhat like this:  the first an olde world style, and the next a trendier version.

My siblings say it is “not allowed/ nice/ practical/ polite/ ’done’ ” for a corpse to have her shoulders and legs bare … and toes sticking out …  so I have said, in that case, wrap the sarong like a shroud. That should take care of both shoulders and toes :)   I could not find a picture to show this except this ‘sculpture’ – which my sister says won’t work either as I will have to die in a seating position!  I suspect she is laughing, but you get the idea …

Option to sarong

Then put me in the cheapest box you can find with no frills or fancy work – just straight chip board box …. and lay me down in the family grave.

That is how I would like to be buried.

Oh …  I took for granted the Catholic rites but with more ‘upbeat’ hymns.  I’ve been thinking that it would  be nice to have a marching band with cymbals clanging and trumpets blowing.  Or at least a whole lot of voices singing lustily and heartily something like Glory Glory Hallelujah – for my life’s hope is that I will be in the presence of my Creator, My Lord  … Transcendent Almighty Triune God.

And I will be finally and totally ONE  – “May all be one.  As you, Father are in me and I in you”  John 17:21

And that I believe is a moment for the greatest celebration of all.

Picture credits :;


Port City Development – or Destruction !!

These are some shots I took of the Port City Development – attempts to ‘land fill’ the ocean!

There is a huge controversy behind this project which was done by the Rajapakse regime without any Impact Assessment. Who needs EIA’s when money beckons?

Even though I do not find beauty in these pictures  – destruction cannot be beautiful – I would like to be able to capture them meaningfully so am submitting for Mundane Monday Challenge after seeing Jithins work of art on cranes.  Jithin am hoping you will comment on how I can improve these as pictures please. ie … composition frame etc the way you have done so beautifully with your cranes.  Muchas gracias :)

PS  For those who may be interested, also adding the ‘vicinity’ of the Port which is in the heart of Colombo.

MMC 027

Galle Road at the end of Galle Face promenade

MMC 035

Filling of the ocean ….

MM 022

The end of the famous Galle Face green.

Girls just wanna have fun ….!

and are so anxious to ‘grow up’  … who dares tell them that

you will find more happiness growing down than up !!! (Author unknown)

Or is that true only as you pass a certain age?

Mundane Monday Challenge 22

Looks like I am growing down because I found happiness and beauty just looking at these which I would like to share with the Mundane Monday community

Tell me if you agree that growing down is fun too (❛‿❛✿̶̥̥) ?

Je t’aime Monster – King of the Road!

This post was in my draft box as I was waiting to get a video of Monster’s Welcome Brigade. Monster passed away in December when I was overseas. The neighbours videoed the funeral service but  I have not been able to look at it as I still feel sad when I think of him.

I also feel I have let him down by not telling his story and have been saddened by my omission.  Although   it still hurts when I think about him, I feel he deserves to be introduced even though he is not with us. 

 This post is thus in the present tense as originally written.  

Rest in peace Mon … I love you so  ~♥~

November, 2014

” Yesterday for the first time I thought I had given you a wrong name.  You are so loyal, faithful and loving … how can I keep calling you Monster?

True, it is shortened to ‘Mon’ most of the time … and Monster is only a name of love … but still it is not an endearment of love. So what shall I call you from now on for  I do love you so.

And I realised how much you love me too yesterday.  You came running to me from your wanderings on the road the minute you heard my car start up.  You followed me from Romy’s home to my home, waited outside whilst I did some work, and then started to follow me back again.  When I called to you that I had forgotten something and turned back, you turned back too – and waited patiently.  Then you saw me safely into Romany’s home and went back to your wanderings on the road.   Oh Monster … can anyone have a ‘road dog’ who is so loving and concerned, so loyal and faithful, so protective of me !!   You are the best, the very very best.   And I want all the world to know about you so here is your story.

Monster’s mother was a road dog.  When she littered near my garage,  I fed the little family food but a monitor lizard devoured all but one little pup … so I took Mother and son into my garage for safety.  When the pup was big, he joined his mother on the road.

They looked after the neighbourhood and everybody fed them. I would get the mobile vet for regular vaccines or when they got sick. Mother dog was so easy to manage – meek and patient. The little one … he was terrified and gave us such a terrible time with howls and yelps that I think that was perhaps when I started calling him ‘Monster’.

The mother was run over one day and Monster was on his own so I started paying him more attention, talking to him whenever I saw him. He had an incredible attachment to me and the minute he heard my gate click, he would come running from wherever he was and follow me.  If I went to my sisters a few doors away, he’d follow me there.  If I went to a neighbours, Monster would come there too.

20141023_172659 (2) RF

Monster waiting for me outside my neighbours home.

If I went to church at the end of the road, he’d come there and join the congregation.

This was OK whilst the church was being built and we had no formal arrangement downstairs. But when we completed our beautiful chapel upstairs, Monster would still join the congregation and sit under my pew. We could never get him to leave as long as I was there. I decided tough measures were called for when he came right into the sanctuary on day and sat there right next to me whilst I was making an announcement!!  Nobody was listening to me, all eyes were him!!  Our priest at that time took it in good spirits saying he was the only Catholic dog he has seen. But after that, I would try to inveigle Monster into the house and lock him in before we left for Church.

Not an easy task – and still achieved only 50% of the time for Monster knows without a doubt when Sunday evening draws near.  Nothing we can do will persuade him to enter the house.

Suspicious Sunday - steering clear of you today look. Also is the vet nearby look !!

Suspicious Sunday – steering clear of you today look. Also is the vet nearby look !!

He knows all our tricks now. If by chance he does get taken in, he hangs by the door and pushes past us when we leave. There is high drama each Sunday for he has to go to church. There are people there who love him, talk to him and even buy him food. The only good thing now is that he does not come inside (the next priest did not allow him) so he mixes with everyone after Mass.

Monster still leads us a dance when we have to get the vet.  He is not well now. He has got injured in a fight and has got a touch of mange. I look at him and say “Mon will you let me get the vet?”  But unless we have a couple of pairs of strong hands and prepare ourselves for days, it is going to be really difficult.  He hates the vet or even mention of the name.  We have to resort to code language like “Canine caretaker”  or speak in Sinhalese  (the local language which he does not understand !) for on countless occasions, the vet has turned up, after we have secured Monster indoors, but has not been able to treat him. Somehow, Monster manages to escape. Once we had the whole neighbourhood looking for him because the Vet had drawn the injection.  We ended up paying for treatment not administered.

Now, we have to give him sleeping tablets before the Vet arrives.  It is not good for him, that’s why I hesitate and delay. The first time we gave him one tablet, he woke up when the vet touched him and ran away.  The next time, tablet plus muzzle.  He still jumped up and ran away.  The third time, tablet, plus muzzle plus both legs secured when he was drowsy. I hated such drastic treatment but felt the end justified the means.  He needed medical treatment. He still struggled and was traumatised so vet  gave him an injection which acts faster than tablets. He took so long to come out I was terrified it had gone wrong.

But Monster is a strong dog.

I think with wonder and undiluted thanks of the day that I ran over him.  Yes, I who loved him so, ran over him.

He had run out in front of the car to form his usual ‘advance party’  but suddenly decided to roll over and scratch his body.  Fortunately I was just inching the car forward when I heard a yelp and froze wondering which way to move. Monster dragged himself out from under the tire where I had run over his lower belly.  He was grumbling and whining and would not allow me to touch him.  I cried profusely, Monster I am sorry but he was in too much pain to heed my tears  and only grumbled at me – you had to hear it to believe!  Honest. That dog could almost speak.  He allowed my mum to hep him and this was only time we had no difficulty with the Vet for Monster knew he needed help.  Later, he allowed me to take care of him till he became right as rain.

I am still very nervous when Monster is on the road as he expects vehicles to move out of his way! 

I am most nervous when driving home as Monster then takes over the whole road and forms a welcome brigade for me, prancing from side to side, till I reach my house. Many times, I just stop and wait for other vehicles to pass by,  or wait till the road is clear before proceeding again.

20141024_180138 (2) Advance party RF

Welcome Brigade – going ahead of my vehicle

Monster… thank you for all the happiness you have brought me, us, and all who love you: your road friends (the walkers) your church friends and your many admirers (including the baker who brings a bun for you each day). Thank you for being so faithful and loyal and watching over me wherever I go.

I thank God for you and pray that I can keep you healthy and safe into your old age.

I love you Mon. ”


Sadly it was not to be.  But Monster taught me how to love unconditionally, faithfully and without expectation of anything in return.

“Love me for a reason and let the reason be love.”

Changing Guards and Pelicans on street lights …

Changing Guards

These brilliant red Ceiling Wax palm trunks looking like sentinels with rifles at ready, reminded me of the childhood chorus :

The changing guards of Buckingham Palace

Christopher Robin went down with Alice

Alice is marrying one of the guards

“A soldier’s life is terribly hard,” says Alice !

Obviously one of the songs of the British colonies huh :)   Wondering now whether Alice deserted Mr. Robin for a guard, Wiki advised that Christopher Robin was a children’s character named by A. A. Milne (of Winnie the Pooh Fame) after his own son.  Interesting !

And interesting how these red barks took me back through the years to the song.  Posting in response to Photrabloggers picture on palm fronds (last week :(  )

For this weeks challenge – these pelicans perched atop the street lights were too beautiful to pass by – so I had to click even though I was driving  (yeah dangerous). It was a beautiful sight though the pictures are not that great. (I did say I was driving right :) )

1 Street light Colombo RF

4 Street light152525 RF