Phoebe, my 6-month-old Golden Retriever hardly barks, making me reflect the power of silence. While I croak and talk to her all the time, expressing my love, she lets me experience love beyond words.

She lets out a bark every now and then though, when anything new and unfamiliar catches her attention.

Today I stepped out of my house to see what prompted her to bark, and I saw a couple of monkeys.

As I shooed them away with a stick, I remembered my college days, when the hostel was infested with monkeys, and most of us did nothing but cower back then.

Girls have sung Hanuman Chalisa then in the hope that the monkeys will give way!

Fear – a deceptively tricky thing that. In our fear, monkeys found their power: dirtying our rooms, delaying our schedule, eating our food.

Fear – paralyzes us into non-doing.

Whenever monkeys came, we sought for our senior sister Tina Thomas – a second year Masters student, and the one soul who showed no fear even when a tribe showed up. Wherever she was, a word would be sent to her, and she would come with a huge stick, shooing them away with a charisma like no other. Occasionally a tribe would try to rebel, but Sister Tina was not one to mess with. They had to LEAVE.

On a couple of occasions, as we waited for Sister Tina, our then Principal Ma’am Poornasri Devi, who stayed in the room adjacent to mine, came to our rescue. Being an ardent spiritualist, all that was required was a wave of her hand, and the word ‘go’. The monkeys would quietly leave. It was jaw dropping!

Backstory aside, all we needed to do then was let go off the fear, and bring in the stick.

Truly, there are no problems without solutions.

Our solution too was right there – simple and easy – a stick to shoo ’em off! We just didn’t see it.


So next time before we cower, let’s find our sticks, shall we? 😉


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