Mrs. Ambika’s Diary


Married to an academic with two teenage daughters.

Age - mid forties, Brahmin, educated to secondary level

My husband is employed as a professor at a College in Madras. I have two daughters, one is studying in the college, and the other one is in sixth standard.

Usually I get up at 5 AM to commence my daily routine of house keeping. After cleaning my teeth and having my bath I spend ½ hour for my prayer. The milkman comes at six o’clock before which coffee extract[1] is kept ready. The milk is heated and mixed with decoction and sugar is added to taste. Generally all will be ready to have coffee at the table. The vegetables purchased on the previous evening are sliced into pieces. Depending upon the preparations the slices are big or small. Rice and vegetables are placed on the cooker, and the whole process of cooking will take about 1 hr.

As the school begins at 9 AM my second daughter has to get ready by 8:30 AM, also for her midday lunch some sweet and savoury preparations must be got ready [for her to take with her]. After finishing her lessons (homework) in which I also coach her, she finishes her meals, and with her books and lunch basket she is off to school in the car.

At the same time my first daughter would have finished her meals, and joined her sister in the car. Then comes the turn of my husband. He has breakfast and goes to the college at about 10 AM. After this, I am fully engaged in my prayers for ½ hr and [during] the rest of the period till he returns home at 1 o’clock for lunch, I engage myself in sewing, washing clothes, reading books, etc. Between 1 and 2 pm I serve lunch for him and also have my lunch. After resting for ½ hr, I will have to prepare tiffin for all. First to return is my second daughter at about 3:30 pm. She is served tiffin and coffee, after which she goes to play with the neighbours’ children. By 4:30 PM my first daughter will be reaching home. She takes her tiffin and coffee and goes to the first floor to attend to her studies. My husband returns home usually at 6PM and sometimes rather later, depending upon his work at college. After his evening coffee by about six, I make the preparations for the night meal. All of us will be at the table by about 8 PM and the meal will be over in ½ hr. Depending upon [their] lessons at school or college my daughters will be retiring between 9 and 10. In the night I will be spending some time in reading before I retire for the day.

May 1st 1975

Today is a holiday for my husband and children because this is Labour Day. I got up at 6 am and the buffalo milkman showed up at about the same time to milk the buffalo[2]. I collected the milk and started making coffee. I sketched the ‘kolam’ at the entrance of the house. By this time my husband and children were ready for their morning coffee at about 7 AM. I took a look at The Hindu [English-language newspaper] for the news of the day. At 7:30 AM or so I took my bath after which I recited my ‘stotras’[3] and got ready to prepare food at 8 AM The maid arrived by then and helped me to clean up the floors and the garden. At 8:45 AM or so, the vegetable vendor showed up and I spent a few minutes in buying the vegetables[4]

 My brother [from Hyderabad] arrived round about 9 AM and I made some coffee for him too and asked him to stay for lunch also. While preparing lunch I also tried to help my second daughter in her studies, for her history exam was on the next day. Even though it was a holiday, my husband went to his lab at 10:30 AM and I gave him a light breakfast. Later on I washed some clothes[5] so that the maid could hang them up to dry.

My children then have their lunch at about 11:30 AM and as soon as the children were fed the banana vendor showed up. I bought some bananas from him after which my brother and myself had our lunch at about 12:15 and by 1 o’clock I started cleaning up the vessels and dishes.

My husband and my sister came in at the same time at about 1:30 pm. At 1:45 PM or so I served lunch for my husband. From 2 to 3:15 PM my sister, brother and myself relaxed in the drawing room.  At 3:30 PM the maid showed up for her evening work[6]. At 4 o’clock the milkman showed up to milk the buffalo[7] [again] after which we all had freshly prepared coffee at 4:30 PM At 5 PM my children and I had a wash and got dressed to attend a wedding reception given by one of my husband’s students which was to start at 6:30 PM. There we met some of our friends and then had dinner at 8 PM. After having said goodbye to all our friends at the wedding we returned home at about 9 PM or so. At 9:30 we all went to bed with some bedside book to read.

May 2nd

I got up at 6 o’clock and as usual the milkman came at about 6:30 AM to milk the buffalo. Having collected the milk I started preparing coffee for my husband and children and finished it by 6:45 AM At 7 AM I had my bath and at 7:30 AM. I left for a temple situated fairly near my house. Having attended the ‘puja’ there I came back home at about 8:15 AM or so. After that I started preparing lunch as usual and finished it by 9:15 AM or so. Having served lunch for my children at about 10 o’clock or so, my husband and myself left for I.I.T.[8] to attend a wedding. We had our lunch there at about 11:30 AM and after that we visited another friend of ours in the I.I.T. campus itself. We stayed there till 12:15 and by the time we reached home it was about 1 o’clock in the afternoon.

I had a good rest that afternoon till about 3 PM At 3:30 the milkman showed up and as usual I prepared coffee for my husband and children which I finished by 4 PM. Till 5 PM I did some crochet work for a cushion and at 5:15 PM I watered the plants. I finished this by 5:45 PM and we made a sudden plan to go to the beach. We got dressed quickly and at 6:30 PM we went to the beach. Having had a nice time there we came home only at 7:30 PM Till 9 o’clock I read a book and at 9:15 we all had dinner together, at the same time listening to the Radio news. We finished our dinner at 9:30 PM and I went to bed finally at 9:45 or so.

May 3rd

As the vacation for my husband and children starts only from today, I got up fairly late in the morning at about 7 AM As usual I made coffee and served it to my family by 7:30 AM At 7:45 there was an interesting radio programme in music and I listened to it till 8:30. At 8:45 I had my bath and from 9 AM I started reciting my prayers. As there was another wedding for us to attend, it was not necessary for me to cook. At 10 o’clock my husband and myself left for the wedding. Having had lunch[9] there, by 11 AM we left for my sister-in-law’s place and stayed there till 3 PM We had our tea there and came back home at 5 PM As we did some shopping on the way back we reached home only at 5 PM From 5:30 to 6:30 PM I did some tailoring (sewing). At 7 o’clock some of our friends showed up and we chatted with them till 8:30 PM or so. At 9 PM we had our dinner, at the same time listening to the Radio news. As it had been a very tiring day, I went to bed at 9:30 PM

May 4th

Today was a busy day for me. I got up at 5:30 AM and bought milk from the booth[10] and started preparing coffee at 6:00. My husband and children hadn’t got up by then so I had my bath at 6:15. After having my bath I prepared coffee for my husband and children and served it to them at 6:45. At 7 o’clock I started reciting my prayers which I finished by 7:45. As we were expecting a lot of guests for dinner tonight, I had a lot of shopping to do in the morning. I finished preparing lunch by 9:30 and at 10:00 my husband and myself set out for shopping. We bought vegetables and other things needed for the dinner and we returned home only at about 12:30.

I had a little rest till 1:30 and from 2:00 onwards I started preparing dinner for the guests we were expecting tonight. I finished preparing the dinner only at 6:00 or so. I again had my bath at 6:15 which I finished by 6:30. From 6:30 I was resting for a while, after resting [getting] dressed up. At 7:30 the guests arrived. Till 8:15 we all had a nice talk and at 8:30 we had dinner together which went on till 9:15. Having had dinner the guests stayed for some more time till 10 pm and they left. After arranging some things we all went to bed at 11 PM.

May 5th

My husband and myself got up at about 6:00 AM, had our coffee, and we went for a walk till [as far as] Besant Nagar [where there is a beach]. On the way back we visited my brother-in-law’s house in Besant Nagar and when we came back it was nearly 8:00.  At 8:15 I bought some vegetables from the vegetable vendor. At 8:30 I started preparing lunch which I finished by 9:45. At 10:00 my friend came to my house asking me to go with her to buy some vessels and dresses. We started at 10:30 and we both went straight to Mount Road[11]. At 12:30 we both had a drink in one of the parlours there. At 1:30 we both came back to my house and had lunch at 1:45. At 2:30 my friend left to her house. From 3:00 to 4:00 I had a good rest and at 4:15 I started preparing coffee for my children. At 5:00 I watered the plants, finished at 5:45. At 6:00 I put on the radio to listen to a good music programme. The programme got over [was finished] by 7:00 and from 7 to 8:00 I read a good story book. At 8:30 we all had our dinner together and at 9:00 we listened to the Radio News. At 9:45 we all went to bed.

May 6th

I got up at 6:30 and the rest of my family got up only at 7:00. I prepared coffee for my husband and children. At 7:30 I started preparing lunch which I finished by 8:30. At 8:45 I had my bath and recited some prayers till 9:30. At 10:00 I served lunch for my family and at 10:30 I went to my friend’s house to leave some tailoring and drawing

of ‘kolams’. I came back only at 11:15 and from 11:30 to 1:30 I did some crochet work. From 1:30 to 2:30 I had a good rest and from 2:30 I had to do some cleaning. As we had been invited to dinner by one of my friends, I had very little kitchen work to do. We had our coffee at 3:30 and from 4:00 to 5:00 I read a story book. At 5:30 I started getting ready for the dinner. I got dressed by 6:00 and at 6:30 my husband and myself left our place because my friend’s house is a little far away. We reached there by 7:15 and from 7:15 to 8:30 we all had a good chat. At 8:45 we had our dinner which was over only by 9:15. We stayed there till 9:45 and we came back home only at 10:15. By this time my children were in bed and we went to bed by 10:30.

May 7th

Today was not at all a busy day for me. I got up only at 6:45 and served coffee for my husband and children at 7:00. At 7:30 my brother arrived here from Hyderabad. I had a little talk with him and at 8:00 I prepared lunch for my family including my brother. At 10:00 we all had lunch together. At 10:20 my brother and myself went to my sister’s place and stayed there for tea. At 3:45 we started from here and went to another sister’s place in Mylapore. I stayed there till 5:00 and all of us went to a temple in Mylapore. After the puja was over we left the temple and came home by 7:15. All of us had a nice chat here till 8:30 when my sister left for her home. At 9:00 we had dinner and at 9:15 we all went to bed.

May 8th

I got up very early at 5 AM because we had a sort of picnic programme today. We had planned to go to a temple outside of Madras City and to have our lunch somewhere on the way. We invited some friends also for this. From 5:30 I started preparing different kinds of food for the picnic. I finished the preparation at 7:30. As usual, I had my bath and got ready for the outing.  At 8:30 we started out and at 9:00 we met our friends who were to go with us at a certain spot as planned. As we all went by car we had a fairly pleasant drive. At 11:0 we planned to have our dinner under some tree. At 11:30 we finally found a good place to eat. We all enjoyed the lunch which was finished by 12:15. At 1:00 we reached the temple. After attending the puja there we stayed in the temple itself for a little while and at 2:45 we took rest in one of the travellers’ bungalows there. When we got up at 3:30, as it was still very hot, we decided to stay there for some more time and play a game of cards. At 4:30 when the weather [had] fairly cooled down we decided to drive back home. When we reached home it was about 7:30. Our friends parted [with us] on the way back and we were the only people who came home. At 8:30 we had a very light dinner and went to bed by 9:00.

May 9th

As usual I got up at 6:00, got coffee ready by 7:00 for myself and others in the family. At 7:30 after finishing my bath, I had a phone call from my friend. My husband and I went to buy some provisions and vegetables at 8:30. We came back only at 9:15. From 9:30 to 11:00 I prepared lunch for the family. Between 11 and 12 noon I did some sewing and at 12:15 we had our lunch. 

At 1:00 I helped my husband in checking up the marks for the answer books he was grading. We finished this work at 2:30. At 3:30 a party arrived to discuss [a] marriage alliance[12] with [for] my nephew. At 4:00 we entertained them with some tea. At 5:00 my husband had to go to Presidency College, so we also decided to join him. At 6:00 my husband finished his work in the College and on the way back we spent some time on the beach up to 7:30. We ate something on the way in some restaurant and it was 9:00 by the time we reached home. From 9:15 to 10:00 we listened to the radio and at 10:15 we went to bed.

May 10th 

We got up at 6:00 and had tea [instead of coffee] for a change between 6:30 and 7:00. From 7:30 to 8:00 I spent some time with the newspaper and had my bath at 8:15. Lunch was prepared between 8:30 and 10:00 and we had our lunch at 11:00. After lunch my husband and I left for Stella Maris College where we met the principal and put [in] an application for admission to BSc Chemistry and BA Fine Arts for my elder daughter. On the way at 1:00 we stopped at Rosary Matriculation School but found it closed. We then went straight to my sister-in-law’s house and rested till 3:00 when we went to Children’s Garden School in Mylapore to get an admission application [form] for my younger daughter and at 4:00 we arrived after making some odd purchases. At 4:30 we all had a good cup of coffee and between 5:00 and 6:00 I spent time in replying certain letters I had received earlier. The day was hot and so I went for a second bath at 6:30. We then visited Kalakshetra[13] at 6:45 to learn some details about the school there. I returned home at 7:30, got dinner ready by 8:45. At 9:15 our friends, who stay very near to our house, arrived and invited us to dinner on Friday the 16th. Between 9:00 and 9:30 we spent time discussing whether to go to Kodai[14] or not because of the rains there. We were in bed by 10:15.

May 11th

My elder daughter got up earlier than I did and got the coffee made at 6:30. From 6:45 to 7:30 I finished reading the paper and then had my bath. At 8:00 I purchased some vegetables and food got ready by 9:30. Between 9:30 and 10:00 I gave oil bath to my younger daughter. At 10:15 the cook from Mylapore showed up to make our annual stock of ‘karudam’. I gave her all the essential items needed for preparing the stuff and by 11:45 I [had] finished my lunch. From 12 till 1:00 I helped the cook in making the karudams. My younger daughter and myself kept watch over the wet karudams as they were dried in the open sun. By 3:30 I made some coffee for the cook, my children and myself. My elder daughter and her friend joined us for coffee at 4:00. The three of us did some sewing together till 5:30. By 6:00 my younger daughter had collected a lot of children in our house and my elder daughter and myself conducted some games for the children. The children had a good time till 8:30. Between 8:30 and 9:00 we had our dinner and at 9:05 we listened to the news and later on some music programme. We all retired at 10:30.

May 12th

As usual I got up at 5:30 and prepared coffee and tuned in [to] the radio, which was over by 8:00 and then I had my bath. I was waiting for the vegetable vendor but he didn’t turn up. So I had to go to the market and came back only at 8:45. My friend and myself had planned to go with my friend (together) for the morning show movie. So I prepared the dinner in a hurry and asked my elder daughter to serve food for my husband and [younger] daughter. As planned, my friend turned up at 10:00. We both started for the theatre. The movie was over by 1:30 and we came home about 2:00. I requested my friend to stay for tea. She knew some [thing about] fabric painting and as she painted I watched the work. She left at 3:15 and at 4:00 a saree man came from Bombay and he showed some sarees, tablecloths, etc. I sent word to my sister who is living close by and she came immediately to see the sarees. She selected two of them and went home by 5:30. We had no outing today and so I spent some time teaching my younger daughter till 7:30. We had a very early dinner today at 8:30 and by 9:00 I had finished all my kitchen work. At 9:30 we all went to bed.

May 13th

I got up with a stiff ache in my back this morning.  Anyhow I got coffee ready by 6:45. Till 7:15 I read the newspaper and had a bath. Today I didn’t get into the kitchen till 8:30. My elder daughter helped me to cut vegetables etc and it was 10:00 by the time the lunch was prepared. My husband had gone for a meeting at 9:00 and returned at 12:30. The children had their lunch at 12:00 and when my husband returned we had we had lunch at 1:00. I received a letter from my brother about the partition of our family property[15]. I went with my husband at 1:30 to meet the lawyer friend to whom I gave a signed affidavit. This was to request the government to issue separate titles for separate property holders. We returned home only at 3:00. It was so hot and I had a quiet nap till 3:45. My younger daughter was having a very nice time with a lot of children in her room but at 4:00 one of the children had a bad cut. I put some medicine and plaster on it and sent the child home. In the evening my husband went to the lab and on the way he dropped me at one of my friend’s house in Gandhinagar, and our elder daughter at her friend’s house. We returned home at 7:30. Since we had some things left over from lunch I spent only half an hour in the kitchen getting the dinner ready. A friend of ours joined the dinner which was over by 9:00. It was oppressively hot and after dinner we put out all the lights and slept on the verandah when all of us went to sleep.

May 14th

As usual I got up at 6:00, got coffee ready at 6:30 and read the newspaper. I had my bath and did puja until 8:15. There was a phone [call] from Trichy about our [train] reservation at (to) Kodai. It looks like we might be getting a good place to stay after the 20th. At 8:30 our neighbour gave us quite a few vegetables which saved us from going to the market. At 10:00 a colleague of my husband dropped in and went to I.I.T. to conduct an exam with my husband. The friend was also expected for lunch so I made some extra preparations. Fortunately, the cook, who helps me usually, also turned up on time and we got lunch ready by 1:00. I went with my older daughter to buy some mangoes and as soon as I came back my husband and his friend also came at 1:30. They left again at 2:15 and I rested from 2:15 to 4:00. In the evening at 6:00 I went to attend a Tamil drama at ‘Sai Kala Mantap’ in Mylapore. We came back at 9:30, had dinner and retired at 10:15.


Mrs. Ambika on her Religious Practices

She writes primarily about annual festivals: New Year’s Day, Gokulashtmi, Vinayak Puja, Navarathri, Diwali, Kathigai, Pongal

  1. New Year’s Day

The first festival is the celebration of Tamil New Year's Day which normally falls on April 13th. On this day we buy new clothes. This day is also known as Vishu (sic). The previous night puja room is (has been) decorated with flowers. A big mirror is placed in front of which fruits of all kinds and vegetables are kept. Family members get up [in the} early morning before sunrise, have bath, wear the new clothes and worship the God and Goddess by reciting songs. We prepare special items, such as rice payasam, vadai and poli, and offer to God. Before our lunch we go to the temple, do puja and break coconuts. Returning from temple we rejoice over our lunch. The special feature of this festival is that a learned purohit (priest) predicts the future for the whole year by reading out a Panjangam, a book which contains the dates of the different festivals for the whole year. The function is attended by public. 

2. Gokulashtami

The next festival is Janmashtami or Gokulashtami  which falls on August 12th this year. This festival is the celebration of the birth of Lord Krishna. In temples and homes events in Krishna's life are [re-]enacted. Idol of Lord Krishna is well  decorated with flowers and decked with jewels. We do puja to Lord Krishna and sing songs and bhajans in praise of Him.

After the bhajans, sheedai and murukkuu made of rice flour and  salt etc and sweet sheedai made of rice flour and jaggery, fruits etc. are offered to Lord Krishna. Plenty of butter, ghee, curds, which are the favourite of Krishna are also given as offerings to Him. In the evening we visit one of the temples of Lord Krishna and attend the puja. 

3. Ganesh

The next festival is Vinayaka puja, [for] Ganesa the Elephant God of wisdom and prosperity who is a popular deity. He is the favourite of children. A clay image of Ganesa is made and worshipped with a great deal of festivity. Puja is performed with lots of flowers. The special offering to God is kozhukatty, made of rice flour and jaggery. [in the] evening we go to the temple and break coconuts and each asks for the boon that he or she desires. Next day the children take the image [out] in procession and immerse it in the sea. 

4. Navarathri

The next festival is Navarathri or Dasera which falls in October. Dasera is one of the chief festivals of India and is celebrated in various ways throughout the country. It is a 10 day festival. Each of the first nine days is dedicated to different aspects of the Goddess Durga. The first three days are dedicated to goddess Lakshmi, the next three days to Parvathi, and the last three days to Saraswathi. I arrange Kolu, a decorated three stepped platform covered with toys (dolls) representing gods and goddesses and animals. Every day in the morning and evening Lalitha Sahasranaman is chanted and puja is done with kumkum. In the evening numbers of people are invited who sing in praise of the goddess and each day an item is prepared to offer to the Goddess. The (those) invited are given betel leaves, sandalwood paste and fruits. In the night I don't take anything except the item that is offered that day. 

The last day the 10th day is called Vijayadasami. This day is considered as auspicious [one on which] to commence anything like music, schooling, dancing, etc.

On the 9th day Saraswathi's picture is decorated with flowers, and all the books and musical  instruments  are kept [put out] and puja is done for all that. We [ourselves] don't read anything as Saraswathi is supposed to do the learning.

5. Diwali

This festival falls in November. Every house is decorated with lamps to welcome Lakshmi the Goddess of wealth and prosperity.  Rice flour designs (kolam) {are drawn] on the doorstep and fireworks and illuminations add to the beauty of the festival. I take an oil bath in the early morning and put on new clothes. Fireworks add to the festivity.  A number of items with sugar and ghee are prepared and offered to Lord Vishnu who is supposed to have killed the demon Narahasuran and given relief to all the people. I exchange these prepared items with relations and friends. 

6. Karthigai

This is a South Indian festival of lights and is celebrated on the night of the full moon in December. The hill of Arunachala at Thiruvannamalli is the venue of the main celebrations.  A huge beacon is lit before the Shiva temple on top of the hill Arunachala and this remains ablaze for several days. In all the temples several lamps made of clay are lit and everybody chants Arunachala Siva hymn.

In the evening when the sun sets I light the clay lamps in my house and decorate the house with kolam (rice flour designs). The special preparation of this day is an item made of rice povi and jaggery and is offered to Lord Subramaniam. Fireworks add to the colour of the festival.

7. Pongal or Sankaranti 

Sankaranti is a harvest festival celebrated joyously for three days. This falls normally on 13th, 14th, 15th January. The first day is a day of dawn for the celestial Devas after their slumber for six months. The offering to the Lord consists of payasam, vadai and sweets. We enjoy the day with a sumptuous lunch.

Second day is known as Makova Sankaranti, a thanksgiving function held by the tillers of the soil who make a grateful offering of their first harvest to the sun God. They wear colourful dress (clothes). Preparation of hand pound (pounded) rice made from fresh paddy cooked with boiled milk and jaggery in a fresh mud pot. As the milk boils they shout 'pongal' 'pongal'!

 In my home a portion of the  backyard is cleaned and decorated with kolam (rangoli) drawn with white rice flour, and a design of the sun is drawn on fresh plantain leaves, [with] pieces  of sugar cane, coconuts, vegetables such as poosami, turmeric, ginger and many other farm products.  A new vessel is tied with a string threaded through a turmeric plant and ginger plant and flowers, and [it is] decorated with kumkum and sandalwood paste. Into this 'sarkari Pongal' a sweet variety of rice boiled with milk and molasses is prepared and offered to Sun God with betel leaves and fruits, after performing puja to Sun God.  Incense is burned and camphor is lit propitiating the entire pantheon of gods connected with agriculture.

The third day is known as Mattu Pongal or Kannu Pongal. This day cows and bulls are given a wash and the horns are painted bright colours, decorated with garlands and jingling bells are tied round the neck. These are taken [out] in procession with drums and pipes. This scene is familiar in villages.

This day, I myself, with family members (female) and children assemble in the open space of my house. All of us make little rice balls out of the Pongal cooked the previous day, some of the balls [have been] made yellow with turmeric and the rest are plain white balls. These [are] placed on fresh turmeric leaves by each one of us and left for the birds to feast on.  This Kannu Pongal is supposed to be the occasion when the women pray for the health and prosperity of their brothers who in turn present them [with] gifts, [such as] sarees or money.

* The banner photograph is of a group of women belonging to one of the organisations studied. It is not a photograph of diarists.


[1] In most South Indian households, coffee is made overnight in a special vessel which drips it slowly through a sieve. The resulting decoction is ‘woken up’ with hot milk the following morning

[2] Some families prefer buffalo milk because it has a higher proportion of fat than does cow milk

[3] Stotras are a type of popular devotional literature in the form of a hymn addressed to the divinity. It can be a prayer, a description, or a conversation.

[4] Most women bought from street vendors who would call at the house regularly.

[5] Clothes washed by the diarists were probably the more expensive ones. Otherwise they could be washed by the maid or sent out to the dhobi.

[6] Most housemaids were part-time and would come for a couple of hours in the morning, and again in the evening. Some serviced more than one household

[7] The milkman would usually bring either a cow or buffalo to milk in front of the housewife thereby preventing adulteration, as well as conferring auspiciousness.

[8] IIT – Indian Institute of Technology

[9] ‘Lunch’ means a cooked meal (with rice) taken at any time during the first half of the day.

[10] In addition to purchasing milk from a milkman who came to the house, it was also possible to buy milk in a plastic container from a stand. The sale of milk in ‘tetra-packs’ as they were called had been encouraged by the government.

[11] Mount Road was the main shopping area of Madras city at that time – it had been renamed Annasalai after a prominent Tamil politician but the old name was still used.

[12] Note that most marriages would be arranged and there would be considerable discussions beforehand in the extended family.

[13] Kalakshetra is an arts and educational complex in the southern part of Madras

[14] Kodai is Kodikanal, a hill station much favoured by Madras residents during the hot season

[15] It would appear that the property was held by the joint family, which is a legal entity in India, but that it had been decided to separate it.