OVERHAULING A LIFE

Over the course of our marriage, I’ve always maintained that a regular overhaul of our lives was of paramount importance — whether it was to pick apart bits of an old house or to question the trajectory of our careers. My husband claims that I’m too hung up with change for the sake of change. My retort to that has always been the same: “If that were the case, why would I not have changed my spouse?” Pat comes his answer: “Because I’m your golden goose.”

Now there is truth to that even though some people may…


From the pizza place, we were headed towards the Indian grocery store yesterday when my husband asked me for directions. Every Indian-American in Saratoga or Cupertino knows how to get to that store on De Anza boulevard, especially how to get there from Cicero’s Pizza — go west on Bollinger Road and make a right on De Anza Boulevard.

My voice exploded then with the heat of a 1000 concomitant eye rolls. “You’ve lived here all these years and you still need directions?”

“I don’t bother to remember these trivial things,” my husband said, cackling aloud.

He told me he…


Photo by Matt Lamers on Unsplash
Photo by Matt Lamers on Unsplash

Once every few months, I receive a glossy magazine called Luxe. Bedrooms in Luxe open onto swimming pools. Living rooms melt into terraces that overlook lakes and ravines.

Midway through this luxury magazine, a page details the life, from 10 am to 7.30 pm, of a San Francisco designer. She begins her day at Chloe Cafe; around 11, she’s browsing boutiques at Filmore District. By 1.30 pm, she’s glowing after a facial at the International Orange Spa. At 4.30 pm, she hops into an Uber while following a self-guided tour of the city on her iPhone. …


It’s said that the thing that most often drives a wedge between a loving couple is money. In my 36 years of marriage, that wedge is comprised, however, of a ragbag of objects.

My husband wishes to keep all the artifacts he has received over the course of his long career. Some are heavy glass and metal plaques for the talks he gave at institutions that felt obliged to thank him. Others are published books, notebooks, folders, shoulder bags, cloth bags, caps, pens, flash drives, t-shirts in the wrong size, you name it. I also have two red turbans if…


A few years ago, I was reading about the training of the New York bomb suspect in the New York Times one morning when I stepped out of my front door to pick up a postcard I’d received in the mail. It screamed: “Hello, Bombshell!”

I’ve been called many things, including “aunty-grandma”, by my niece’s two lovely children. But no one, not my husband, not my many male friends, no one, has ever, ever addressed me as “bombshell”.

In just a few minutes, I went from feeling anxious about the potential threat of a “bomb” blast in a public thoroughfare…

Kalpana Mohan

~~~Kalpana Mohan’s first book, Daddykins, was published by Bloomsbury in 2018. Aleph Book Company published her second book, An English Made In India, in 2019.

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