Life Is All About Goals

A new week is here, and I’m back after days of travelling and exploring to catch up on the familiar. Just in time for the World Cup!  I had returned over the weekend but it’s been raining here so heavily that the computer was down, the television kept going blank, and my phone network was shaky as well. There went all my “catching up” plans! I haven’t watched much of football (we call it “football” here. “Soccer” for those familiar with the other word) in the last couple of days, and managed to stay tuned through newspaper updates. (Three cheers to simpler modes of information when electronic gadgets let you down.) Anyone else keenly following the matches? Even Google doodles have caught the World Cup fever. Here’s hoping for some stellar matches and performances in the coming days.

Today’s Google doodle



It’s the start of a new week, and we hope it’s bright and shiny. Our prompter for the day has selected “stellar” as the word to work on.

Write a post using the prompt of the day, or describe what the word means to you. Compose a poem, describe a photograph, quote your favorite author or musician – let’s hear your thoughts on “stellar”.

Pingback your post onto the official ragtag community page below, and while you’re there check out the numerous interpretations of the prompt your fellow bloggers have come up with.

Here’s my post on today’s prompt:

Create a new post inspired by today’s prompt.

Please tag it “RDP” and “Ragtag Daily Prompt”. Also create a pingback to  stellar (copying and pasting this link should work). If the pingback doesn’t work, copy your link in the comments below. Do give pingbacks a little time to be approved as they need to be moderated to avoid spammers.

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Around The World And Through Time

I belong to a community called “Postcrossing“. We are a worldwide bunch who call ourselves “postcrossers” and still believe in the antediluvian art of writing letters by hand and posting them in the real world through a good old-fashioned mail box. The beauty of exchanging postcards is the stamp of the country of origin on the card itself (unlike letters where the envelope is stamped). At one glance you know where the postcard has arrived from and how far and wide it has travelled to reach you. In addition, the picture side can be filled with all sorts of images. Most postcrossers prefer “touristy” images that provide a glimpse of the place the card has been sent from. But there are many others with peculiar quirks and hobbies who prefer their mailboxes filled with subjects of interest printed on the postcards. I have sent out cards with pictures of local cuisines for food lovers, and in turn have received cards depicting national sports or dance forms from fellow athletes and dancers.

I recently procured this box of “literary postcards”, aptly named “bibliophilia” – a hundred cards filled with references to books and authors from antediluvian times to the present century. The picture side of the card is an illustration of the contents of the book with a quote by the author, while the side to be filled mentions the name of the book and author along with the year of publication. The artwork is gorgeous – I’m tempted to keep the cards myself! Will fill them up gradually as I come in contact with bibliophiles to send them to. Have a look at some pictures – I love the quality of the cards, the creativity behind the images, and the entire literary presentation. Most of the cards are sepia-toned, giving them a very old-world charm – a perfect ode to the eras the books were written in, and the very art of sending and receiving handwritten mail.

Check out the doodle of the horse in the hair. How ingeniously done!
The cards, neatly stacked in the box, have a very vintage vibe.
The picture portion filled with myriad visualisations of quotes picked from specific books.
The side you write on and stamp perfectly credits the source of literature.


Happy Sunday, to all in the blogging world! Hope everyone’s having a glorious weekend. It’s been pouring here the entire weekend and the sun’s barely come out. More time to read and write and enjoy some hot coffee in cool weather.

So here’s our word for the day – “antediluvian”. Write a post using the day’s prompt and share it on the official ragtag community page below.

Here’s my contribution on today’s prompt:


I’ve used this word and enjoyed it for years without thinking what it literally means, but then, one day, I was using it and thought, “It means before the great flood! That’s what it really means!” I guess I’d have known that if I relied more on dictionaries and less on context.

Create a new post inspired by today’s prompt.

Please tag it “RDP” and “Ragtag Daily Prompt”.   Create a pingback to antediluvian . If the pingback doesn’t work, copy your link in the comments below.


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It’s a rainy Saturday here and the weather is pretty gloomy. How’s the weekend shaping up around the world? Here’s our prompt for the day – create a post using the word “target”. Share your contributions on the official ragtag community page below, and while you’re there check out what your fellow bloggers have come up with.

Here’s my post:

Ragtag Daily Prompt of the day : Target
Saturday, June 16, 2018

Create a new post inspired by today’s prompt.

Please tag it “RDP” and “Ragtag Daily Prompt”. Also create a pingback to Target (copying and pasting this link should work). If the pingback doesn’t work, copy your link in the comments below. Do give pingbacks a little time to be approved as they need to be moderated to avoid spammers.

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The Reading Promise – Book Review

Title – The Reading Promise

Author – Alice Ozma

Genre – Memoir

On the weekend celebrating Father’s Day, Alice Ozma’s tribute to reading is a fitting book that highlights the parent-child relationship and the bond forged through books.


This is not a book about books – If you’re looking for a list of titles to pick up and authors to check out, you’ll be disappointed. The Reading Promise is about the very act of reading, and how books connect people. This is a book about individuals having the quilt of their lives woven together by the books they shared. It is a tribute to the words on a page, the person who read them to you, the one you read them to, the memories associated with each book you have ever read. For Alice Ozma, reading is an act of love, and she describes her book as a love story.

When Alice was nine years old, her parents went through a separation. Her father ended up with sole custody of Alice and her sister Kath. Dad wanted the girls to know they would always be his priority no matter what. And the bibliophile that he was, he made a pact with the girls to read to them and with them everyday. Books ensured they would always be there for each other – whatever else might separate them in life, reading would be the one activity that bound them.

Kath did her own reading (she’s seven years elder to Alice), but dad and Alice took up a challenge to read together for a hundred consecutive days. This was a fun activity for a nine year old – she got to read and spend time with dad. They successfully completed the challenge and realized there was so much fun and learning on the way that they set a new target for a thousand consecutive days of reading – even giving the project a title, “The Reading Streak”. Avid readers, however, will always read – target or no target. The 1000-day goal ultimately resulted into 3,218 days – the reading streak continued for nine years, only coming to an end when Alice left home for college.

“The Reading Promise” beautifully takes us through the father-daughter relationship and the role books played in their lives. As a single father raising two daughters, dad relied on literature to get him through parenthood – according to him, anything you ever needed to know could be found in books. And this love for books is what he shared with his children. As mentioned earlier, this book is about the memories associated with books read over a lifetime. Alice’s mum’s attempted suicide, her  parents’ divorce, her sister leaving home, her first accident while driving, road trips, visits to museums – from the ages of nine to eighteen books backed her every step of the way, whether to learn how to cope from characters going through similar situations, or just as a diversion when situations got too overwhelming.

Each chapter begins with a quote from a book she was reading at that point of time. So, from a child to an adult the reader is taken through an assortment of books that grew up along with Alice (or rather helped Alice grow up).

Anyone who has been raised by bibliophile parents and grandparents, who has literally been born and brought up around books, who has tonnes of friends who are bookworms, and has in turn introduced one’s children and grandchildren to books will love “The Reading Promise”. It’s an ode to the unsaid promise that books have always been there for us and we will always be there for books. And as we share books with the people we love, we promise them that we will always be there for them. Books, and the memories of reading them, are treasures we entrust to our loved ones. A reading family will identify with this greatly. (Even Alice Ozma’s name has a literary story behind it – Dad went all out right from the time of his children’s births.)

“The Reading Promise” was written when Alice was twenty-two years old. (Hence the tagline of the “promise made thirteen years ago”.) The writing is simplistic and childlike – not intended as a literary marvel but more as a compilation of the bookish antics of the father-daughter duo. Read this if you have bonded over books with your parents/children. A fabulous read for all bookworms, though fathers and daughters will particularly enjoy this one. A single father raising daughters and using literature as a medium to have “the talk”. Or dad showing up at the theatre because rehearsals have gone on too late, and arguing with the director that it’s nearing midnight and the day’s reading is pending. Alice’s writing strikes a chord of how protective dads can be, no matter the age of the daughter – that eagle eye will always be on the lookout for “injustices” (however trivial they might be). As it pays tribute to this special bond and the role books play in the equation, this is a must-read, on Father’s Day or any day.

P.S. There is a detailed list of books the pair read over nine years, compiled at the end of the book. At a glance, it literally reflects how the father raised his children  through books and how their reading choices evolved over the years.

Rating – 5/5


The weekend’s here! Woohoo!! Our prompt for the day is “cataract”, whose selection our prompter Steph from Curious Steph describes as “technical fun”. The daily prompts serve to learn something, in addition to sharpening our writing skills.

Let’s have your interpretation and presentation of the word of the day. Create a pingback to your post on the Ragtag official page, or copy-paste your link into the comment section. You might not see your comment/pingback immediately until one of the admin moderates it – Not to worry; it will appear soon enough.

Here’s my contribution on today’s prompt:

Today is June 15, 2018, and the Ragtag Daily Prompt is Cataract.

Pingback to this page so we can all enjoy your work!

Also, if you tag your post with Ragtag Daily Prompt and RDP, it also makes it easier to find.

This is our 15th day of posts, and we’ve had a lot of learning. It seems we are getting the hang of having a daily prompt. If you are not already following the Ragtag Community, follow us now so you don’t miss any prompts!

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Cascade of Words – Poetry Love

Writing has never been one of my hobbies or something I would actively pursue. I love reading though, and had started off this blog in an attempt to connect with fellow bibliophiles. Book reviews formed a large part of my initial blog posts here. Then a few months ago, I joined the Daily Post on WordPress which helped me remarkably in taking the initiative to actually sit and write something. The prompts were a fun way of expanding on things I knew, while also learning new words and concepts on the way. This is why, when the Daily Post ended, a few of us disheartened souls decided to launch the Ragtag Daily Prompt – to build a community of bloggers like ourselves who either love writing and look for matter to write on, or on the other end of the spectrum are complete novices to writing and blogging and are looking for a place to start.

Our prompt for today is “cataract“, whose selection our prompter has described as “technical fun”. The beauty of the daily prompts is to learn something each day, in a fun way by bringing bloggers on a common platform. I was browsing and contemplating on what to write about the chosen word, without rendering my article too technical, when I chanced upon some information that “cataract” is a synonym for “cascade” and “waterfall” (in addition to the progressively degenerating condition of the lens of the eye with which we commonly associate the word.)

Here’s an excerpt from Robert Southey’s “The Cataract of Lodore”:

The cataract strong

Then plunges along,

Striking and raging

As if a war waging

Its caverns and rocks among;

Rising and leaping,

Sinking and creeping,

Swelling and sweeping,

Showering and springing,

Flying and flinging,

Writhing and ringing,

Eddying and whisking,

Sprouting and frisking,

Turning and twisting,

Around and around

With endless rebound:

Smiting and fighting,

A sight to delight in;

Confounding, astounding,

Dizzying and deafening the ear with it’s sound.

The lines are short but I loved the play on words. Here’s the link to the entire poem for those who like poetry and are interested in reading more:

The cover of the book as available on Amazon.



Shout out to all those waiting to sharpen their writing skills! Tracy from Reflections of an Untidy Mind has given the ragtag community “julienne” as the prompt to work on today.

Do follow the official ragtag community page for access to all the prompts and also to connect with fellow bloggers. Create a pingback to your post for it to appear on the community page, or alternately copy-paste your link into the comment thread. And while you’re there, you might want to check out others’ contributions as well.

Happy reading and writing!

Here’s my post on today’s prompt:

julienneWe invite everyone to create a new post inspired by today’s prompt – julienne.

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