Saturday, 31 August 2013

Have a Hobby, Mon Ami!

Past few weeks have been simply very crazy for me, too may time consuming activities. Holy month of Ramadan ending and routines changing, school summer holidays ending, office workload increasing….. along with expenses!

My younger daughter's starting school was an event in itself. Arranging for books, stationary, uniform and most importantly the pick and drop schedule. Now, this is in addition to what workload I already have with my elder twin children. This time around it just got multiplied by 3. And as the year prepares to enter into 4th quarter, annual targets at work picks up speed for faster delivery resulting in stress.

So, how one should refresh him/herself? Traveling to a quite/scenic place always helps……. But it requires money mostly (and always definitely!!). I find that if you have a hobby and you do find time for it, it refreshes you. Takes your mind off the stressful things. So, my hobbies come to my rescue in this stressful phase from which I am passing through right now.

I like to make jigsaw puzzles specially if I can find a puzzle of an oriental painting. This is not a old hobby of mine, I tried it a year or so before and failed at it miserably, why? Because I was rushing through it and I actually didn’t like what I was making. So, during a trip to Istanbul in 2011, I found 2 jigsaw puzzles of oriental paintings. 1000 and 1500 pieces respectively. This time around I planned my approach and very carefully completed the 1000 piece puzzle. It gave me immense confidence and pleasure. I am planning to get it framed.

(Tortoise Trainer (Turkish: Kaplumbağa Terbiyecisi)  by Osman Hamdi Bey in 1906.) 

Currently I am working on 1500 piece puzzle and it is half done as of today.

 (The Carpet Merchant - Jean-Leon Gerome 1887)

It is difficult to get good quality puzzles here in Karachi, maybe we as a nation do not have a hobby culture and it gets evident when you visit toy shops or large departmental stores where you don’t have a hobby section or hobby shops.

I am also curious about what will I do when I finish this puzzle, which will be very soon. And I don’t see myself traveling to a place from where I can buy a good puzzle. Maybe, I’ll ask some friends or office colleagues to look it up for me during their visit to some place outside PK.

I also like to collect refrigerator magnets. I love them. And I buy them from wherever I can. In fact, my refrigerator is falling short of space and I have many magnets kept in the closet. I need a larger refrigerator if I want all of my magnets to be displayed.

So far, I have magnets from:

Turkey, Russia, Norway, England, Sri Lanka, India, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Philippines, Dubai, Oman, USA, China and Thailand.

I also like to mend broken things or dismantle old things and use their parts in making new things. Recently I re-engineered two scooties and an old bicycle for my daughter. :)
I recall, both of my elder brothers had hobbies, stamp collecting, aero modeling and fishing. My mom also loved to do needlework embroidery, but her arthritis troubled her a lot, so she gave it up later in her life.

What I learned from my hobbies is:

- Give time to yourself
- Think positively
- Have patience
- And most importantly…….. enjoy it.
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