Dressed up for a friend’s wedding.
Lovely Vaijayanti in London.

Tell us your origin story: where are you from and what made you the person you are today?

I am from Mumbai, India. A place where you never ever get bored. Lively colours, hot food, hot weather; a place to get lost amongst people…loads of people.

There are a number of people & incidents that helped define me.  My ancestral and cultural heritage, my eleventh grade teacher who fuelled my passion, my family, my best friend who kept pushing me forward, my education in physics & sustainability, my teachers who kept challenging me intellectually. Exploration of Mindfulness & meditation. And at last, my mistakes, this I can’t ignore.

How long have you been a Cambridge Ladybird and what brought you here?

In comparison to most I am a newbie to WI. I joined Ladybirds in Cambridge in March 2016. I gate-crashed one meeting and finally got the last place for 2016. I’ve been living in the UK for 6 years now, and found it really difficult to meet people and socialise. Especially in the absence of pint or kids.


I thought I was going into a phase of social isolation. That’s when a friend from Uni suggested WI and here I am…


What does being in the WI mean to you?


Like-minded women meeting other women from different aspects of our lives. A place where you could just be you. A place to make friends, conversations, discussions, knitting and cakes! 

Playing at the Eden Project in Cornwall.

What’s a typical day in your life lately?

7:00ish: Get up, hula hoop or meditation or do nothing, have shower get ready to work, breakfast, sometimes empty dishwasher.

8:30: Cycle or bus to work.


9:00  to  17:00: Monday, Wednesday & Friday to Work, Tuesdays & Thursdays for Accountancy and Purchasing Trainings & studying, weekends for studying, cleaning, emptying bin, gardening, saying hello to neighbour, laundry, have chat with friends, calls to India, Meditation, sometimes weekend retreats etc… Or do NOTHING!


18:00 to 20:00 ish: Get home, cook dinner, eat, tidy kitchen, lunch for next day, defrosting some food for next day’s dinner if needed, put dishwasher or laundry.


20:00 to 22:00: Browse Internet, watch Poldark, spend time with husband, study if possible etc.


22:00 : In bed and half dead!

Someone gives you a million pounds to spend on yourself. You can’t give it to charity or spend it on friends or family; it all has to be for you. What do you do with it?

Pay off my debts, learn to drive, play golf, tennis, piano, learn something new everyday, get a degree from LSE. Spend a day in London, evening in Paris & night in Berlin! Travel, travel & travel!

What are your most passionate community or activist goals?

Organise events for a recycling contest, food waste, and nature walks.

Enjoying the flower gardens at the Eden Project in Cornwall.

In a thousand years when future generations unearth your tomb, what are the wise words you have left behind to inspire them?


“Anything or anyone that does not bring you alive is too small for you.” — House of Belonging by David Whyte


Chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry?


Vanilla of course!

Thank you Vaijayanti and we’re all so glad to know you through the WI!

Vaijayanti, Nov 2016

The member of the month for November 2016 is Vaijayanti!