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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

To Be(ard) or not to be

One of the commenters to my previous posts had asked the question:" Why do some Sikh women don't like Sikh men with beard?". At the outset, it appears to be a simple question. But maybe not. Unfortunately, as a bearer of XY chromosome, I can only surmise what the other sex thinks about the beard. So, if some of my thoughts tickle people the wrong way, I am sorry.

The simplest explanation is perhaps that the beard has simply grown out of fashion. No pun intended. The new look of the brave new century just does not include a flowing mane. The new look consists of chiselled faces with high cheek bones. In the era of high definition TVs, the girls don't like their significant other's frontal profile fuzzed up with a lot of hair. They would rather want him looking sharp. They would rather have somebody who is abreast of the latest fashions and the newest looks. A lot of this attitude is generated by peer-pressure especially through the mass-media. The image of a choclate faced hero is nowhere close to a man with a beard. This peer-pressure has only been worsened in recent times whereby turban has been associated with a certain group of people and mostly invokes negative emotions from the Western Society. There are umpteen examples of "mistaken identity", hassles at the airports blah blah blah. Young Sikh women would rather avoid all this hassle and take the easy way out which ensures easier merger into the Society around them. The net result of all this pressure is that the image of a turbaned bearded Sikh man connotes a person who is out of touch with times. Unfortunately, we live in a world where the wrapping of the gift is equally,if not more important than what is inside. It takes a lot of courage to open up the package and so most people would rather pick up the box with the most visually appealing wrapping.

At the risk of sounding risque, may I state that beard is perhaps considered an impediment during intimate moments. I promise I am not making this up. I have concrete proof to prove my assertion in terms of candid comments from friends. It is probably easier to be kissed by someone without getting entangled in the woodworks. It is probably going to offend some people but unfortunately, from what I have heard, it is an important consideration for most women. I am not going to shy away from mentioning this because people will mind it. It is part of the reason, as I see it. I might be wrong but I will need arguments to convince me.

Anyways, those are some of the reasons as I see them. I am sure there are people who can do a better analysis than I could and I am keen to listen to their arguments. The interesting thing is some of the above reasons are fixable while others are not. We shall talk about the remedies at another time.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Who's your Daddy now?

Last weekend, I went out with a couple of friends (some of which happened to belong to the fairer sex) to a local bar. To be exact, it was two guys and three girls. Merely friends hanging out. Nothing I could write Mommy about to tell her that I was making progress towards getting her a D-i-L. Anyways, so this happened to be like a local College hangout with its expected crowd of young drunk College kids trying to have a good time. Of course, I was the only guy with a turban on in that crowd. I know some people would say why do I have to shake the hornet's nest? Why would I want to go to such a place where there is such a high likelihood of inviting comments, jibes and crap like that.

I have asked myself that question. And the answer I have reasoned for myself is this: I am sick of being afraid. I will not hide in a shell anymore merely because I am afraid that some ignorant buffoon will take it the wrong way. If he does that, it is his problem and not mine. And I am not going to prevent myself from having a good time worrying about whether other people will get worried beacuse of me.

Now that I have done the preface, let me complete the story. So, there we were. 2 dudes and 3 dudettes trying to chill, have a few laughs and in general enjoy themselves. The place was jam packed with people thrusting their elbows in other people's flanks in the name of shortage of space. You could smell the lousy deodrant in the next guy's armpits as well as the sweet sickly smell emanating from the pretty lady standing next to you. Gross,huh. But I kid you not.

So, just as we were settling in and people around me had given up staring at me after making countless futile attempts to make me nervous, the white guy next to me whispers something in my ears. I could barely hear his words above the din of the place. He said:" Are these girls your daughters? Would you mind if I take them home?". My normally vigilant central nervous system was taken off guard. By now, I have developed a thin layer of lead over my skin so that off hand remarks like that don't penetrate it any more. I smiled, giving him the glimpse of my pearly teeth through the curtain of my moustaches (here I use hyperbole to exaggerate effect!). I said:"You are mistaken,Sir. I am an Indian Prince and these are my three wives." I,then, turned towards my friends and posed them the question:" Ladies, this gentleman here thinks that I am your Daddy. Is he right?". My friends are extremely good sport and they all replied in unison:" Yeah, Harry is our Daddy, if you know what we mean." One of them added:"Harry is my Winnie-the-Pooh." I then turned towards the intruder and asked him if he was satisfied. The stranger was half convinced but he did the right thing. He told me that I was an extremely lucky guy and he was jealous of me. I hope he is right. Later, we all laughed about it and my friends wished if I could ask him:" Who is your Daddy now?"

I am not hurt anymore when strangers display their ignorance in such obvious ways. I don't blame them because I think the US is still a very fair society. I can't even think what would have happened to minorties in some of the South-east Asian countries if they would have been blamed for something as atrocious as 9/11.

There, I go off rambling again. Anyways, I thought I would mention this incident to make the tone of my blog less sombre. I don't know if it is funny or not but it illustrates a subtle point. Like I have said before, "doosrein ke sitam hum seh lehnge, apno ki bewafai mar dalegi"(I am strong enough to brook the atrocities of others, but the betrayal of my own will kill me).

Friday, January 27, 2006


It seems that the current part of my journey is through a desert. A big dry sea of sand in which I am trudging, carrying the corpse of my dreams. Every now and then, I get taunted with sights of a distant oasis with fresh water and good food but so far it has always turned out to be a dastardly mirage.

In the last two weeks, I have had four leads. Friends and other sources have helped me get in touch with four prospectives. First of all, H1 asked me to email a girl who currently lives down under. I did as instructed and we have been in touch. However, we have kind of figured out that it is not going to work out. It seems like we belong to different times and although we are going to be good friends, it is probably going to end there. Anyways, things may change if and when we meet. The other contact was provided by a colleague at work. It is one of her good friends who is currently single. I have emailed her but so far it has been all zilch. We will see how that turns out. The third one is a friend of a friend who initially was ok to meet a Sardar guy but then changed her mind and decided she did not want anyone with a turban. Cheers to that. The last one was a random blogger whom I should not have attached much importance to. It is funny how after years of discipline, I am still such a kid. I get excited by little things. 27 springs have taught me nothing but to be a grown up kid.

No Ball

Harry Singh was playing at the crease. It was a hot summer day. Beads of sweat had popped up on his forehead. His palpitations were shaking the whole stadium. His lips were mumbling in a silent prayer. And then came the delivery. The ball rushed towards him. His heart almost burst out of his bosom. He swung his bat, squeezing every ounce of energy he had in that shot. The wood met the leather and the ball leapt towards the boundary. The crowd waited at the precipice of expectation. And then the miracle happened. The ball crossed the boundary. The crowd roared "Chauka, chauka". A smile now lighted Harry's face. His hard work had paid off. It was his first boundary outside of match-fixing. Harry lifted up his bat thanking God and the crowd. But then suddenly, an eerie silence gripped the crowd. Harry was startled. He looked towards the Umpire. The Umpire, a certain lady by the name of a certain Ms Singh aka Ms Cruella, was lifting her hand. Her heart, like her ear rings was crafted out of pure zirconium with a melting temperature far above than any mortal could aim for. Furrows wrinkled his forehead. He prayed for the impossible. Her hand went up but instead of a horizontal sweep, indicated a NO BALL. Harry's heart stopped for a second but then came back out of a stubbornness and resilience he himself did not know he possessed. Silent tears flowed down in small rivulets from the back of his eyes to his heart, the salt in the tears agonising the pain from the gashes on his heart. The chauka was a no ball.

The sad part is that there is no third Umpire to appeal to. For now, the man with balls has been given a No Ball.

I know the above metaphor is messed up. My knowledge of cricket is marginal at best. It is probably not even factually correct but I hope people get the idea. I could not resist the temptation. This ain't no whining. It is prose.

But that is ok. I know there will be other balls and perhaps other chaukas. But tonight is the night of the No Ball.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Did I score or what?

Notwithstanding the noise being generated by my last post and the few questions that I shall try to answer, the exciting thing is that I might have earned myself a date. Thanks, L babe for accepting my invitation. Indeed, let us go out girl. I hope you are serious. Coz I am hearing violins in the background and I hate for them to go away.

Ok, while I am thinking of vooing her, let us talk about the other issues at hand. Assumptions, I say, is the mother of all follies. I don't think my story is a story of a few young Sikh guys who find themselves on the wrong side of the aisle. I completely and totally understand the side of the Gursikh women who have the courage to follow their religion to the tee. I salute you gals. I am surprised however by the assumption that I would not consider such a girl for a wife. Ok, I am not going to pretend that I am not perfect. Tell me who is. I am not going to pretend that my hormones do not respond physiologically when I see a pretty babe. Of course,they do. Just because I wear a turban does not mean that I have lost my masculunity. However, that does not in any way mean that I shun, reject or deride Sikh girls who do not cut their hair. As a matter of fact, I would expect my wife not to cut her hair. It might be difficult for people to comprehend but I do believe in my principles and am willing to stand by them. Just because I called a girl "foxy" does not mean that I liked her because she had cut her hair. I never said that and I can not be blamed for people's imaginations. If she happened to be a truly beautiful person, then I am going to say so. The reasons I did not choose the other person are not fit for description here just because I don't wish anybody's feelings to be hurt. But suffice it to say that I was not attracted to one girl over the other because one had cut her hair and the other had not or one was wearing a skimpy dress while the other was not. If you can believe it, I try to look beyond the hair.

The assumption that has hurt me most is to say that I am not a religious person. Just beacuse I am overtly descriptive about my feelings for the other sex does not mean that I have commited a sin. I do not wear my turban for cultural reasons. Indeed, I am under no cumpulsion to wear my turban. I do not do it to please my parents or my relatives or the priests. I do it beacuse I feel I have a duty towards something that is much greater than us all. I do it because I feel like doing it. I have always considered myself a very spiritual person but I am not an orthodox person. I attempt to understand and respect mine as well as other religions and love God. I do not think God wanted me to be celebate all my life. If I choose not to hide behind a facade of hypocrisy, that does not make me a sinner or anyless religious than the next guy. I am not a promiscous individual. I do not believe in sleeping around or using women to my advantage. And trust me, that requires a lot of discipline to curb the temptations. I am a young guy who is of marriageable age. My parents are impatient for their daughter-in-law and I am only trying to find them one. If in the process I also try to have a clean, good time, I do not think I deserve to go to hell. It amazes me that writing a blog or calling a spade a spade( or a fox a fox) would lead people to believe that I am bereft of any spiritual depth. Gimme that much credit, please.

I do agree with those who say that looks constitute an important part of the decision process for an arranged marriage. I have admitted that and it only proves the point that this concept is an imperfect one. But to say that western Sikh girls have some sort of divine right to marry clean shaven guys is a bunch of crap. Somebody asked me If I would marry a black girl. That is perhaps one step ahead of asking me if I would marry a Gursikh girl(which I think I have answered above). It smacks of racism and a complete insensitivity to whatever I stand for. If I were to meet a black girl who would steal my heart away, I would marry her. She might steal my heart through her gorgeous looks or through her personality. I don't care. Is this ever going to happen? maybe not and the reason would be that my current contacts are introducing me to Sikh girls they think would be suitable for me. Don't get me wrong. I appreciate their efforts and would encourage them to continue to do that vigorously. I gave this instance merely to make a point.

So, to cut through the crap. I am open to marry a Gursikh girl who does not cut her hair. On the other hand, I am not going to reject a girl because she does cut her hair if I like her otherwise. The trouble is that the Sikh girls are not that flexible. They want no hair.Period. And that is what disturbs me. They associate hair with a sign of backwardness or whatever while that is nothing but falsehood. Keeping an appendage of the body should not b equated with who you are and it certainly does not mean that you can't be romantic, modern or cool. Look at me. I am a Sikh, I am a lover and I am so cool that I blow the crap out of John Travolta. Ok, maybe that was too much.

Anyways, that is enough cerebral acrobatics for one day. Thank you all for your compliments and for your rants. Keep them coming. And, Ms Singh, I shall wait for your phone no. or email or something.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Judge us not

I thank one of my readers for pointing out a blog of what seems to be a young Sikh girl who is "annoyed" by young Sikh guys lacking "self-confidence". It is always interesting to hear the other side. I myself hate to be a part of a group of "cry babies". But the truth is that it is easy to comment and to criticize. Even easier is to judge people. It is hard, however, to put oneself in the shoes of those we judge.

It is hard to imagine oneself to stand out among the crowd and thanks to some recent events, do so in a negative manner. It is hard to develop a thick skin to withstand the "slings and arrows" of those around you. And it is not always verbal darts that are slung but it is the penetrating eyes that scan your innards at work, at the Mall and at clubs. And let us not forget that while there might be a small minority of Sikh women who are amenable to "dating" a full Sikh, majority of them would rather not. It is hard to understand all this unless you yourself have been subjected to this.

Is this in our minds? Have people like me become paranoid to the degree of insanity? Why can't people take a look around themselves, in their homes and in their places of worship? I am sure there are plenty of instances there who would support my claim.

Is this truly important? I mean we are only talking about a few desperate young guys who can't find girls. I wish it were this simple. These situations point out the rapid metamorphosis that the Sikh society is undergoing where younger generations are increasingly shunning and relegating the "full Sardar" into obsolence. If young Sikh guys lack confidence , there are tangible forces eroding that confidence. Let me illustrate my point. My own cousin who considers herself a young successful professional in Delhi, took a pledge along with a group of her other Sikh friends that they would not marry a Surdie. Her own father almost proudly informed the family of her decision when she ended up marrying a non-Sikh. Truly, if she would have fallen in love with any person and decided to marry him, I would have shown her a thumbs-up. I would not have (and still don't) care about what relegion or what ethnicity he belonged to. However, to systematically rule out a full Sardar as a life partner in such an ignoble manner boils my blood. To say that she will not marry a guy who has decided to follow the path that God has chosen for him?- is this not sacrilege.

How is a Sikh youth supposed to react to such pledges? Some of us like me will become angry and vent their anger in diverse but mostly ineffectual manner. Others would direct their anger inwardly which would result in a confidence that looks like Swiss cheese. But can you blame them? Can you blame them if people they are supposed to call their own would rather ignore and ridicule them? Is it not surprising that we criticize non-Sikhs who crack Sardar jokes but are completely ok when a "modern" Sikh girl rejects a guy because he proudly donns the appearance of his relegion?

Can you look me in the eye and tell me that all is pink and rosy? Can you tell me that I suffer from a lack of confidence? Maybe you can but I think you will be sadly mistaken.. So, please don't tell us we have no balls. We can live with "mistaken identities" by others but it is hard to put up with "mistaken priorties" of our own.

Anyways, this is not a personal thing. The lady does indeed have a valid point and I apologise for our percieved impotence. I am sure others will joining me in saying that that is certainly not the case.

I realize that I am indeed turning into a whiner while there are so many potential wives waiting for me out there. I have some new leads and will post those here. This post was sort of a knee-jerk reaction to the accusation that we have "no balls". No man could ever take that lying down.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Blue or Pink?

Before I go on to finish my story from 2 posts ago, a loud shout out to Puneet2. Thank you for your encouraging words. They go a long way in easing the pain. I am relieved that finally, somebody understands. Your hubby is a very lucky man. By the way, if you do actually know any of the women that you describe, please do not hesitate to direct them my way. I am probably the one they have been waiting for.

Anyways, to finish the story, the gentle brother brought back his sister as he had promised. As I was busy paying my respects to the uncle jees and aunti jees by the conventional "pairi pana"(which by the way has degenerated into a hasty half hearted "goda farna(= knee catching)" action), I lifted my eyes to see the veerji walking towards me with the sister at his side. And then in that instant, I felt the sting of a big honey bee on my heart. Tough luck, boy-I told myself. As you might have guessed it, it was the lady in pink, with a nervous smile, on her face walking towards me. As a red blooded punjabi, I would not let myself be deterred by initial defeat. I put on an air of inflated yet hollow confidence, wrung my moustaches into a slim handsome arc, palpated the wrinkles out of my maroon turban and got ready for the moment. As I did that, I felt the third eye of my heart ransacking the room searchig for that speck of blue which seemed so attainable and yet so impossible. Settle down, kid, I found myself telling my ticker.

The duo walked towards us. The brother introduced her sister to me. I extended my hands in a gracious handshake. She responded by folding her hands in a quiet SSA and then took pity on my half extended half embarresed hand and reciprocated the gesture. "Hello",I said," Nice to meet you". The words that came out of her mouth were in a sweet dulcous voice. I was impressed. As I was fumbling for words for the next sentence, I took the whole view into account. Within her, I tried to find the one I was looking for. A wife, a friend and a soul mate.

We then exchanged a few more pleasantries. H1 did the smart move and asked the brother to leave us alone for a few minutes. The ball was now in our court. I think over the past few years, I have become a good conversationalist. I can come up with interesting stuff to talk about. I put all of my newly acquired skills to work and sucessfully established a meaningful conversation. We exchanged tid bits about our demographics, our work and our hobbies. As we kept on talking, my mind was engaged in a frenzy of parallel-processing trying to acquire information from subtle non-verbal cues: her body language, her outfit, etc , forming opinions and making a decision. She asked me a few childish questions which were kind of a turn-off. Her words were occasionally punctuated by a shallow gigle which I could see in distinct contrast with a naughty lady like smile that I have grown to love. At the end of the five minutes, it was clear to me that the light at the end of my tunnel was nowhere in sight. I did not see any sparks that I have been so desperate to ignite. I know she felt it too. But subject to civil norms that we are, the smile never left our faces. We parted with lifeless goodbyes and nods of our heads to join H1 and veerji.
Later on, I met her parents who seemed genuinely pleased to meet. They seemed like very nice people and I could sense the eagerness in their eyes. I stole a few glances at the diva in blue who turned out to be a cousin ,visiting from out of town. I tried very hard at exchaging some messages through my eyes but alas, no sucess. She seemed pretty, aloof and seated on a pedestal too high for me. My heart left out a few howls full of yearning, howls that got lost in the wilderness. After a few customary "chai peeke jana, roti kha ke jana", we found ourselves back in the car driving towards our den. H1 already knew my answer and it was his sad duty to convey that to the family which he did artfully and sincerely. I almost wished that he would ask them to consider me for the "blue" but I knew he could not and so I never asked. However, he did agree with me that "blue" would have been more suitable.

I know you are wondering how did I decide that "pink" was not going to be the color of my life. I thought long and hard about it too. The fact is that within the premise of arranged marriage, such decisions are made on imperfect and incomplete data. A lot of it is based on looks and resume though I do think smaller things like personality matter a lot. Some of the things that I considered in making the decision cannot be revealed here for reasons of respecting privacy and dignity of certain individuals. It is indeed sad, that while I bitch and moan about other people judging me and others, I found myself guilty of indulging in the same dubious process. I try and I try really hard and hopefully will be a saner person.

Needless to say,the woods remain lonely, dark and deep. But I have my loneliness to keep me warm and cozy for the journey that, seems like, will go on for a while.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Time for Reflection

While it is easy to dismiss my thoughts as shallow, I still think that my feelings are shared by a lot of other Sikh brethren. With each passing day, I see a thin sediment deposit itself over my dreams, dreams which run the risk of being fossilized if I don't act now. I do not want to be a helpless observer. It is true that I could probably devote the time I spend on this blog on other productive things( and believe me, I have plenty of avenues), I choose not to. I am sure that the situations I have encountered have been endured by countless other Sikh youth and hence warrant documentation and analysis. I do not wish to appear melodramtic but trust me on this.

It does not hurt me when a random Red Neck walks up to me and says Saalam-a- Laikum with a snigger. It also does not hurt me when some delirious lady asks me: "Do you kill people?' .No, I can put up with that. What really hurts me is when I am scanning profiles of young Sikh women and I come across the words "looking for a clean shaven man", "only clean shaven JSM respond" blah blah blah. I have asked myself several times:"Why do I care?". I mean why should I care. Other people have as much a right to be so specific about their partners as I do. But the truth is that it bothers me. It bothers me when guys like me are being prejudged on the basis of their principles and their beliefs. It wrenches my soul because as a young man, it matters to me what women think about me and because I do not wish to be subject to a rejection that I don't deserve. It is ok to me if a woman was to reject me because of my personal attributes. But to be discriminated as a group hurts me.

Some people would argue that following the path of Sikhi is a tough job and one must be prepared to face such stuff. As a Sikh, one must value one's faith as above other things. Of course,I do and I am resolved to follow the ardous path I have chosen. But, I shall not allow the hypocrisy of other people to shut me to silence. Just beacuse I am supposed to be the good guy, I shall not suffer discrimination. If I am going down, I am going down with a lot of noise.

The sad part is that this is just not my story. I personally know many friends who have faced similar situations and had their self-esteems blasted because of crap like this. I especially abhor people who preach certain things and are totally comfortable with their kids choosing partners who are "in sync with modern times". It is probably easier to shut up and put up but I don't think that is cool with me.

Anyways, I am thankful to people who think this blog is funny. The truth is that when you squeeze my broken heart, out flows the crimson juice of prose colored with humor. I shall continue to describe my search for a life partner and detail the trials/tribulations as well as the joys of this ride. Bear with me......

Thursday, January 05, 2006

A Bag of Bananas

I wish I had good news to write about. But no luck so far. Last weekend, I went to meet the girl mentioned in my last post. As I had mentioned, the family had a religious function at home. They had a nice big house in the outskirts of Houston. It took almost an hour to get there. I was accompanied by my friend who I shall henceforth refer to a H1( I am sure there will be other H's I will have to mention). Neither of us had seen the girl although H is good friends with her brother. As I drove on the meandering roads of the concrete jungle that my city is, anticipation welled up inside me. Could she be the one?

Involuntarily, my mind kept on conjuring up images of a "dhood nalon chiti" sikhni who will smile and smite me dead. I have disciplined myself not to build up expectations, because invariable when you are burdened with the leaden load of expectations, you fall flat on your face. Anyways, I must admit I was quite excited about the whole thing. So, we reached their house around 11.00 AM and there was a fair crowd already present. I hesitated for a second when I enetered their house but then experience took over and I walked in with my head held high. As I walked down the aisle, I could feel the poking of piercing eyes. I could feel that somewhere hidden among that crowd of devotees was a princess who could be God's gift to me. I took a sneakish glance around the room looking for the one whom I had seen several times in my dreams.

Boom, my visual scan system detected two bogies: one at 2.00 clock and another one at 9.00 clock. The one at 9.00 seemed more lethal and demanded immediate attention. The one at 2.00 clock looked ok from the distance and would require closer observation. However, I could not decide which of the two would blow me off to bits. Both looked eligible young women......God, who is it? who is the one that I have waited so long for?

I came back after paying my respects and took my place among the devout. The melodies of keertan were floating in the air and on an ordinary day, would provide balm to my yearning heart. But today was no ordinary day. I kept looking out of the corner of my eye to check out both the ladies. The one on my left was quite pretty and had a facade of gravity which could not hide the naughtiness within. She was wearning a blue punjabi suit. For a moment, our eyes met and then we looked away. Her eyes did not betray anything. Poets would have described that moment as a blissful eternity but to me,it felt nothing special. A fox in a sheep's clothing, I told myself. Interesting. I then turned my eyes to check out the other lady. She gave the girl next door look, was wearing a pink suit and seemed very studious and devoted. She was sitting at an obtuse angle to me and I could not take a direct look at her. As I was making my observations and taking mental notes, I felt some distant eyes groping at me. There in the corner was an auntie doing her own reconnaissance over my person. The Mother, I guessed.

Suddenly, I felt a flutter on my left lateral T5 dermatome. Gosh, that was my heart. Call me shallow but it was brimming with anticipation. I almost wished that the girl to my left was the one I was supposed to meet. Certainly, I would not marry somene for their mere looks (although my rogue friends tell me that it is not a bad idea) but she could be the one I would be interested in knowing more about. More on this thought later..

To cut the ong story short, I later met her brother. He seemed like a nice guy who I could get along with. We exchanged pleasantries and the the usual questions about each other's demographics. And finally,after a few minutes which did indeed stung like eternity, he offered to brng her sister over. As he went away to bring her sister, H1 snuck upto me and whispered into my ears:"Blue or Pink?who do you think it is". I smiled and shrugged my shoulders in ignorance. And then, the moment of truth.........

I hope you would have guessed the outcome from the title of the post. For the naive, "kela ho gaya" is a colloquial Delhi idiom expressing one's anguish over the death of one's expectations. It is usually in much lighter spirit that I have been able to convey but I hope you get it. I would love to stretch this already long post and finish the story but it is getting late and my loneliness is calling me to bed reminding me "Honey, you have to drag your ass to work tomorrow". Well, she is right. Soon, I will wind up this story as well as describe the protracted retrospection that followed. It has taken me days to recover and start my oddysee again. Soon, you shall know why...