Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Barsati's garden at night

After we returned from the 'Peace Rally' on Christmas eve, I thought about taking some snaps of Barsati's garden at night. 

Below are few of the snaps . . . 

Allowing suicides

Suicides have been decriminalized in the country. It is very obvious that within a short time, suicides willbe legalized in the country. I’m not sure of what the implications will be. Recently, we had one patient who sort of gave us the clue on what could happen once there is a free license to commit suicide and suicide becomes an acceptable cause of death.

I very well understand extreme situations caused by medical and social conditions which push people to commit suicide. I’ve had at least couple of friends and relatives, who committed suicide, know families who have been badly affected for generations just because of the fact that someone in the family had decided to take his or her own life. I sympathise with them. I do not plan to pass a judgement on any who took this extreme step.

However, my belief in Jesus who is the resurrection and life to all those who believe in Him prevents me from accepting suicide as an acceptable cause of death.

Let me narrate about a patient who came to us couple of weeks back . . .

Mr. AS, a 60 year old gentleman was brought into the emergency by 2 young men with severe vomiting and in a confused state. One of the young men who claimed to be the nephew of the elderly gentleman told us that the patient was found in the fields early morning and it seems that he had taken poison.

There was no point in talking to the elderly man as he was quite confused and agitated. He was slowly losing consciousness. As we examined the patient, we realised that it could very well be a case of poisoning as his mouth and clothes were stinking with the characteristic smell of pesticide.

We had to really struggle to get a nasogastric tube down his throat and soon we were sure of the diagnosis. It seemed that he had drunk a whole bottle of the pesticide.

Considering into the fact that the patient was trying his best to resist any of our attempts to treat him, I made a comment that considering into fact that suicide is going to be legalised, hospitals may end up in a state where they will have to get a written consent from relatives before starting to treat any patient who is in a bad shape after a suicide attempt.

One of my nurses suggested that suicide attempters should be rather allowed to die. Then another commented that it is time that medically assisted suicide, euthanasia should be legalised in the country.

Meanwhile, the other bystander who claimed to be a neighbour commented that the patient was having a tough time as his wife and children had abandoned him and in such a situation it is quite difficult for him to have a quality life.

By God’s grace, Mr. AS did quite well. We needed about 100 ampules of Atropine to treat him.

However, as soon as Mr. AS showed signs of improvement the 2 young men who brought him disappeared. Mr. AS was alone in the ward for one whole night. The next day, early morning, our staff made frantic efforts to trace his address. AS was still confused and could not give coherent replies to our queries.

It was a blessing when another patient identified AS and told us that he knows the guy. It turned out that AS was from a distant place which was more near to a bigger city than to us. Within couple of hours, AS’s family was with him.

The wife narrated how AS was taken away by couple of his nephews for some discussions regarding ancestral property. Then she got a phone call from AS that he has been forcibly fed poison by his nephews and he pleaded her to get help. After that she did not get any information about AS. Considering that the family was poor and from a backward caste, she did not know if she’ll get help from anyone and therefore, she did not do much till she received our phone call.

Over the next few days, both his sons came. They were employed elsewhere. They were also quite scared after hearing what had happened.

Now soon we will be in a situation where suicide is made legal and such a patient may not be brought to the hospital at all.

Here AS lived quite near to a larger town where he could have been taken to hospitals with better facilities and options of better treatment. Instead, he was brought to us where we only have quite basic facilities.

Considering that the case is now sub-judice, I do not want to make any more comments.

However, the incident brings up at least one issue which can come up once suicides are legalised in the country. The elderly in our communities are in the danger of being killed by their own relatives and then dubbed as suicide.

As I discussed this with my friends, one of them narrated about how euthanasia has become a ‘boon’ for many a family to dispose of a nagging sick elderly person in the family in some of the western countries. Considering into fact that ritualistic suicide is part of the culture in at  least few of our communities, suicides and assisted suicide will be easily assimilated in our day to day lives.
The sanctity of human lives is in danger . . . are we bothered?  

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Barsati's Garden - Light shades

More snaps from Barsati's garden. This time, flowers of light colours . . .

Peace Rally, Kachhwa

Since the last few years, we at Kachhwa take out a Candlelight procession on Christmas eve. 

Below are some of the snaps taken from the 'Peace March' on Christmas Eve 2014. 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Grapefruit Cake

Kachhwa is very famous for it's grapefruits. Not much cherished by everyone in the campus, it is a major attraction for our family. All of us except Shalom likes it. 

This Christmas season, we stumbled upon a recipe for making Grapefruit flavoured cake. 

Ingredients (for a 9 inch baking pan) - - -

Grapefruit - 1
Zest of 1 grapefruit - about 4 teaspoons
Eggs - 3 nos
Butter - 1 cup
Flour - 2 cups
Sugar - 1 cup
Baking powder - 2 teaspoon
Dried grapes - 1/2 cup
Candied grape fruit peel - 1/2 cup
Candied colored papaya (assorted colors) - 1 cup

** If you want to use cooking oil instead of butter, you need half a cup oil instead of the 1 cup of butter and 4 eggs instead of 3 eggs. A 1/4 cup of additional flour will give more firmness to the cake when you use oil. 

Method - 

1. Peel the grapefruit and take the juicy parts of the fruit. Remove as much peel as possible. The rind gives a very sour taste. 

2. Sift the flour, along with baking powder and the candied grape fruit peel, grapes and the tooti fruiti. Sieve the flour to separate the flour coated fruits. 
3. Cream the butter and sugar.
4. To the above batter, add the eggs one after the other and cream. 
5. Add the grapefruit and the zest to this mixture and mix. 
5. Now, incorporate the flour to the batter. 
6. Using a spatula, fold the flour coated fruits into the batter. 
7. Bake at 160 degree celcius for 50-60 minutes or till a tooth pick comes out clean. 

So, chances are that you will be served grapefruit cake if you visit us over the next couple of days.

Wish you all a blessed time during this Christmas. May the New Year see the Almighty bring you the choicest blessings . . .

Barsati's Garden - Shades of Red

Close snaps of flowers in the garden at Kachhwa - - -

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Barsati's Garden

We’re so privileged to have a garden in front of our home. Not very much an admirer of flowers, both me and Angel have sort of learnt to appreciate gardening and flowers after seeing Barsati, the gardener at work . . .  

The morning view from our door . . .

The A block, where we stay . . .

The famous Grapefruits of Kachhwa

Another view of the A Block in which our home is . . . 
 Few more snaps . . .

Mr. Barsati,  the gardener with the magic hands . . .