A Mother’s Sacrifice.

Allright! So here’s another one of those original writings. Although for this one, I’ve taken a few hints from some other topics, but the sum total of it resulted in this yet another short story. Unlike the other story, this one is very ‘Indian’ in nature .Read on and tell if me what you thought about it down below in the comments!

Here goes..


As Shilpa stared out the window of the speeding train into the inky blackness outside; with her four year old daughter, Ria sleeping beside her, Her mind flashed back in time- The excitement she had felt on her wedding day, her husband’s dreams of making a huge success in the sugarcane fields, the beautiful green meadows and tilling the sugarcane fields until evening. The first three years of her life had been wonderful. Five years later Ria was born and the Shilpa’s happiness knew no bounds!

But all of this changed a year later when tragedy struck and Shilpa’s husband fell sick and passed away leaving her with a young baby and fields to manage on her own. For the next two years, Shilpa struggled to make things work but her stars seemed to be against her. The rains failed and the sugarcane yield was poor. She shuddered remembering going to the moneylender to beg for money and the debt she knew she had to repay later. With a sigh, Shilpa brought herself back to the present. She was determined that she wouldn’t give up and that nothing could stop her from giving Ria the best of the world.

She was on her way to Mumbai -the city of dreams! Her cousin brother, Amir had had told her how she could easily make a living there. He had promised to let her stay with his family and help her get a job. So, plucking up the courage, Shilpa put together her few belongings and decided to go to Mumbai.

The next day, the train came to a screeching halt in at the VT station in Mumbai. Shilpa was startled out of her dreams when she looked out of the window! Never had she seen so many people all at once! Shilpa and Ria hesitatingly stepped out onto the platform wondering how they would find Amir in this sea of people. After a few minutes of searching, they managed to spot him. He was amused to see their astonished faces as they looked outside at the fancy cars and the tall glass buildings around.

“Come on! You’ll get used to this this soon! Let’s go home and get you settled.” , he said.

‘Home’ a little run-down house in a crowed suburb in Mumbai. A string for drying clothes separated the tiny kitchen area with the living area where Amir’s family sat or slept on mats layed on the cement floor. Shilpa and Ria made themselves comfortable in a corner of the room, trying not to get in the way of her cousin’s family. And so began their life in the city!

Amir got Shilpa a job at a construction site where she worked the whole day carrying cement and stones. She would get extremely tired by the end of the day but she was happy that by the end of the month she would have saved up some money to pay back her debts. She really looked forward to Sundays when Ria and her would go exploring in the city. Every evening, she made time to teach Ria the alphabet and how to count. She told herself that she would do whatever it takes to see that Ria was well educated. Next year, she had planned to enroll Ria in a small municipal school.

The days passed by and soon summer crept in. Shilpa worked hard under the scorching sun. At times, she almost fainted under the load of the stones. She knew this was partly because of not eating her breakfast which she had been giving to RIa as she wanted to make sure Ria would grow up to be strong and healthy. Just a day before, the supervisor had yelled at her for resting a while. Nevertheless, things were starting to settle down and Shilpa was happy that life was finally peaceful again.

And then disaster struck! One Sunday, as Shilpa and Ria were strolling down the road, Ria’s eyes fell upon a beautiful doll and she shrieked with delight and said, “Look mummy! That’s such a beautiful doll! Can I please have it?” She looked at it so lovingly, that Shilpa saw a lady’s purse sticking out of her purse and on an impulse she grabbed it and tried to run. Before she knew it, she was surrounded by people who caught her, beat her up and dragged her to the nearest police station. She tried to apologise to the lady, explaining to her that she had never done such a thing before and to give her a chance for the sake of her daughter who was sobbing loudly in the corner. But her apology fell on deaf ears and the lady said that she was an irresponsible mother to teach her daughter how to steal and that she would make sure that she went to jail for it.

And so, Shilpa was sent to jail for six months and Ria was sent to a foster home. Amir refused to see her, no wanting to get into trouble with the police.As Shilpa tossed and turned relentlessly in her narrow bed, her mind flashed back to her village and she realised that life was much peaceful over there. Everyone knew each-other. She had been a fool not to realise this sooner. And with these thoughts passing through her mind, she spent six months in jail.

Soon she was released. She earned a little money by weaving some baskets. She had decided that before picking Ria up, she would buy her the doll with whatever money had. With the doll wrapped up in colourful paper, she went to find her daughter. At the foster home, they told her that a young couple had come to take Ria and wanted to adopt her, if possible.

Shilpa was shocked! She found the address and at once rushed there, determined to take Ria away. She stood on the roadside outside the tall building where her daughter now lived. She stopped and asked herself what she really had to offer her child- a lifetime of love, but nothing secure like this family. With a heavy heart she decide that if she wanted a wonderful dream for her daughter she had to give her up.

She turned back and with tears in her eyes, she took a bus to VT station.” A single ticket to the village please”, she told the man at the ticket counter.


GIIS Scholarship Exam Singapore.

As I prepared myself for the GIIS scholarship exam, it was absolutely no surprise that I found no data on the internet about the syllabus or the difficulty level of the exam whatsoever, and went into the exam hall just as clueless as the other students taking the same exam. So, having faced the GIIS exam today, I have decided to give a brief overview about the types of questions asked and the topics covered in each subject, namely- Maths, English and Mental Ability. Of course, this is only about the paper that I wrote, and the test pattern may keep changing every year. Continue reading “GIIS Scholarship Exam Singapore.”

It Always Seems Impossible until its done.

How many times in your life have you heard the phrase,”It’s Impossible!” ? And then, we find ourselves taking that one person’s advice and backing away or stepping out of the way while someone else is doing that very thing!

That’s the nature of impossible. It always seems unattainable until it’s done.

Yes, it may seem tough or even unimaginable but it’s not impossible. You just have to give it a try. And why not? What’ve you got to lose in just trying? Remembering that you are going to die someday is the best way to avoid the trap of thinking that you have something to lose. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

Of course, you are bound to make mistakes along the way, but they are the biggest helps you will get! You will now know one wrong way of doing that thing and you know not to repeat it ! What we believe we can do or what we can do, what we consider impossible or possible is just a function of our beliefs and not of our capability .As I was surfing the net a few days ago, I tripped upon this inspiring quote by Muhammed Ali.

“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”        

– Muhammad Ali

Remember that guy that gave up? Nobody else does either!  So believe and act as if it is impossible to fail, and it will be! Because, after all, it always seems impossible until it’s done.

It’s kind of fun to do the impossible

-Walt Disney.

Review: The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

With a backdrop of Taliban ruled Afghanistan, The Kite Runner is story about the immensely touching friendship of Amir-belonging to royal ‘Pashtun’ blood and Hassan- a mere ‘Hazara’ servant boy. The story is setup in Kabul in Afghanistan and partly in America.

This book is a masterpiece in more ways than one. Khaled Hosseini has beautifully woven the friendship of Amir and Hassan right from their days of childhood. The story goes on to tell how one irreversible decision can haunt a person for their entire life, how one lie can form huge boundaries, how friendships are formed and broken, how distances can crush relationships, how killing people in the name of God suddenly becomes acceptable and finally how just a single step towards the truth can help in erasing all the guilt away!

It is a very fast paced novel with no loose ends. Every time I kept the book down , for a  break, I felt the urge to pick it up and continue reading it until I reach the ending. The last chapter of the story is very well written and the story has quite a satisfying ending. It is truly an amazing story that will stay with you no matter how heartbreaking.

~~ Ravija Maheshwari.

The so-called ICSE “Board Exam” Monster!

Having just finished my 10th Board exams, I think I’m qualified to say that the boards are just not as tough as is told to us in our entire schooling. Most schools set their pre-boards papers much tougher than the boards themselves, which is of course good since it prepares us for the worst. Nevertheless, here are some important tips on each subject that I have put together which will surely help!


Here is my recent blog on what you’ll probably feel like on the results day!


  • For the compositions(narrative or descriptive) , I highly recommend reading some good types of introductions and conclusions before the exam. This not only helps in starting off well, but also gives ideas for formation of the story.Here is a link to some good intros and conclusions.                                                                                                    Types Of Introductions                                                                                                          Types of Conclusions
  • The Comprehensions are very scoring. Make sure you know plenty of synonyms for the first part of the question where they ask the meanings. Write comprehension answers to the point and in your own words. Do not copy from the passage and you will surely score full marks. 
  • For the precis, be sure to write exactly 60 words and not more. Underline the important material in the reading time itself. Then, form a rough draft and frame the summary in your own words. Do not use lines from the passage. 
  • The formal letter is preferred as 3 marks are reserved for format. Avoid scribbling as they cost marks in the letter.
  • Learn the grammar syllabus from a good grammar book such as “Renin Martin”.
  • And lastly, go through the Board Model Answers Paper. This gives us an examiner’s point of view for correcting, the common mistakes made and the marking scheme.  Board Model Answers 2014    


  • The Shakespeare novel, “Merchant Of Venice” should be read throughly. I feel that Act 2 and Act 4 are very important for the coming 2016 Board examinations. Here is the link to a site which provides all the explanations very well.                                                  No Fear, Shakespeare.
  • Try your best to include all points in an answer according to the marks for both poetry and prose.
  • For the 16 marks-essay type of question, give a character sketch and the background of the story. Then jot down at least 12 points according to the question asked.
  • Go through the Board Model Answer Papers to understand the marking scheme and common mistakes made by students.                                                                                      Board Model Answers 2014


History and civics is surprisingly one of the easiest papers in the boards.

  • Make flashcards to remember all the important dates and events.
  • Buy a “Together With History and Civics” book which really helps in getting acquainted with the different types of short questions asked in Section A.
  • Skipping any two chapters for long questions only in history and world historypreferably one that is has already been asked in the previous year’s examination )  is all right, but the short answers should be learnt.
  • Go through the Board Model Papers to understand the marking scheme.                         Board Model Answers 2014                                                                                                        Important Dates and Events.


  • Learn the maps very very well as they are extremely scoring. Always use arrows in the map and do not write the name of a place or a river without the use of arrows.
  • Learn any 6 topics thoroughly as only five questions are to attempted.  I’d recommend learning Climate of india, Soils, Minerals, Water resources, Agro based industries and Natural Vegetation of India since these are shorter than the rest and also more scoring. 
  • Transport and waste management(combined) is also very scoring though it is a long chapter.
  • Make sure you know the topographical map’s terminology and use all the previous year’s papers for practise.
  • Always try attempting an extra question in geography.
  •  Go through the Board Model Papers to understand the marking scheme.                             Board Model Answers


  • Once you have had enough practise from the problems of the school textbook, solve the last 10 year’s previous papers. Make sure you do this timed as this will help with time management on the final day of the exam.
  • Attempt question related to statistics and constructions only if you have sufficient time.
  • Do not attempt extra question if only 15 minutes remain. Recheck your paper instead.
  • Here is a list of all the important formulae to be memorised .                                              List of formulae.
  • Go through the Board Model Answer paper to understand the marking scheme.              Board Model Answers


  • Light is the easiest chapter in physics since it does have any numericals  ∴ Special attention should be payed to this chapter and the ray diagrams for both concave and convex mirrors are very important.
  • Practice the diagrams of cathode ray tube, a.c and d.c motors, current flowing in straight and circular wires, current flowing through a solenoid, ring system of house wiring, all the pulley systems, devices that use levers,refraction through prism and sound waveforms. 
  • All the important definitions HAVE to be learnt. There is no escaping out of this.
  • Go through the Board Model Paper to understand the marking scheme.                               Board Model Answers


  • Analytical and practical chemistry chapters (Pg 273 and Pg 64 of Simplified ICSE chemistry textbook) are very important and should be learnt extremely well.
  • Only learn the important definitions and practise adequate numericals from stoichiometry.
  • Learn only the reactions specified in the syllabus for organic and inorganic chemistry.
  • Go through the Board Model Answers to understand the marking scheme and the common mistakes made by students.                                                                                     Board Model Answers


  • The best way to learn for this subject is to make a list or flashcards instead of memorising directly from the text.
  • Make a list of all the locations of various organs or parts of the plant. This will help in answering questions such as ‘Give the exact location of ……” which are asked in Section A.
  • Learn all the labelling for the diagrams given in the textbook since any of them can be asked.
  • Learn to draw only those diagrams that are specified in the syllabus.
  • Go through the Boards Model Paper to understand the marking scheme.                     Board Model Answers

And with that, you’re all set for the boards. Good Luck! Cheers!

A Journey To Be Remembered.

As I’ve said previously before, I’m going to try cough up some original writing on this blog. So here is a short composition/story that I’ve written. Read it and tell me what you think in the comments down below. Hopefully you’ll like the ending!

A Journey To Be Remembered.

“Look out!”, cried the Captain.

I had just about managed to steer clear of the gigantic icebergs that had appeared out of nowhere! The piercing screams of the winds rattled my eardrums. I was standing on the deck of one of the greatest ships of all time, ‘The Emerald’.

It all started when my great grand uncle and I decided to take one last journey around the world. The year was 1853. My uncle was a famous sailor of his time. His love for ships exceeded his love for just about anything else. “But Alas!”, he was old now and his age kept him back from sailing.”Not without one last journey!”, he had enthusiastically told me.

We started our journey on the 15th of August, 1853. It was not a very bright day, but would that make my uncle delay his plans? Of course not! We began the journey by deciding the course of the journey which would cross Europe, all the way south to South Asia and back. For the first few days of our journey, I helped along with the controlling of the ship and even got to control the steering wheel once! On the third day,a series of thuds woke me up. As I walked onto the deck to check what all this was about, I was greeted by a great wave of glistening green ocean water! Yes, that truly woke me up! The captain was nowhere in sight. I took control of the steering wheel just as I heard a deep voice behind me scream “Look Out!”. I had just about managed to steer the Emerald away from a huge iceberg in the sea. The captain took control of the ship again. It was getting dark now. Drenched in salty, ocean water , I saw him worried for the first time. As the strong waves ceased, he sat down gazing intently at the disintegrating piece of map in his hand. “No.. No this can’t be..This is not good”, he said as he continued to stare at the map. It was later that he told me that a hurricane was forecast-ed to come our way and that it would approach us at the midnight a few hours away from now. I was shocked!

“Can we not change our path uncle?”, I asked him.

“I already have; but the hurricane’s fast approaching. There is no way we would avoid it in time”, he replied.

Was this the end?

We began making preparations. As night came in, my uncle told me to get rest while he would control the wheel and stay on watch. Needless to say, I couldn’t sleep that night. A few hours later the ship started bobbing up and down, much more than it usually would. As I walked up to the deck to check the first thing I noticed was that a fresh gush of midnight black ocean water had evaded the deck. I tried to keep my balance as I walked towards the Captain.

“Are we-” , my words were broken when the ship hit an enormous iceberg present in the ocean water. The ship was breaking apart. I lost my balance and slipped right into deep ocean!I had swallowed a gallon of water, and was drowning in the icy cold ocean.

The next thing I knew? I was being shook violently by my uncle. It was a surprisingly clear night. My eyes fluttered open and I realized I was on a float made up of wood pieces of varying sizes tied together which a thick rope.

“I see land! I see land!”, squealed my uncle in childish delight.

“How long have I been unconscious”, I asked him.

His excitement kept him from answering my question.

On reaching land, we got off our float and the ocean water twinkled under my footfrints before sinking in the soft sand. I was happy beyond limits! We were safe at last! “What IS this place?” , I questioned my uncle. As he looked into his map to check , he realised this place was nowhere on the map!

Six years later, I sat on one of the plush red chairs and applauded as my uncle walked onto the stage.

“And the next award goes to Sir Christopher Columbus, one of the greatest sailors in the world for the discovery of North America!”, said the announcer.

Hello! It’s me.

Hey there! I’m so glad you are here.

I’m Ravija Maheshwari. I’m 19 y/o but can oscillate between the maturity of a 10 year old to that of a 25 year old. I love animals and I can guitar pretty well! I started this blog 3 years ago and blogged about all sorts of things.

Now, however,  I use this blog as a medium to write up my honest, and often humourous, reviews of the books I’ve read ( I love fiction but you’ll find non-fiction too) and the places I’ve travelled. Occasionally, I’ll come up with infographics and other illustrations that you will, hopefully, like!

Adios for now!




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