Friday, December 31, 2010

Alvida 2010

2010 will be a definitely memorable year for me and my family for many reasons. The year was so much stressful and to pass each day, it required lots and lots of patience and endurance for me. There were happy days and sad days just like any other year, but when I sit down and wrap up the whole events of the year, I can remember the nights spent thoughtfully rather remembering the wonderful times I had. Let me try not to make this post a pathetic and sympathetic one. The first good and happy thing to share with my blog is the number of books I read this year. I would like to list it down with their names and their authors.

1. The moving finger – Agatha Christe
2. Random acts of heroic love – Danny Scheinmann
3. A Peculiar Chemistry – Kitty Ray
4. A thing beyond forever – Novonel Chakraborty
5. The man in the Brown suit – Agatha Christie
6. Only in London – Hanan-al-shaykh
7. Right Fit, Wrong shoe – Varsha Dixit
8. I too had a love story – Ravinder Singh
9. Evil under the sun – Agatha Christie
10. Simple things make luv – Komal Thakur
11. Nothing can be as crazy – Ajay Mohan Jain
12. Roots & Shadows – Shashi Deshpande
13. That kiss in the rain – Novoneel Chakraborthy
14. Should I or Shouldn’t I – Neetu
15. It happened that night – Akash Verma
16. Clive Avenue – T.S. Tirumurthi
17. Peril @ End house – Agatha Christie
18. The Lavender House – Wendy Robertson
19. Mango Coloured Fish – Kaveri Nambisan
20. Things falling into place – Linda Taylor
21. Case Histories – Kate Atkinson
22. The Great Train Robbery – Michael Crichton
23. The Dark Holds no Terror – Shashi Deshpande
24. Where shall we go this Summer – Anita Desai
25. P.S. I love you – Cecilia Ahern
26. Keep the change – Nirupama Subramanian
27. Love Story – Erich Segal
28. Solo – Rana Dasgupta
29. Johnny gone down – Karan Bajaj
30. The River Between – Ngugi wa Thiong
31. I had forgotten the name of the book and the author :P

I am thankful to the time and the British Library which has given me the chance to read a wide genre of books in this year. And I am really happy to have enjoyed reading these many books except for the last book whose name and author I had forgotten so easily.

The next happiest thing happened in 2010 was my sister’s wedding. Though the wedding was delayed many months, I would like to remember only the joyous 3 days of wedding and nothing more than that to avoid making sad faces every now and then in my every sentence.

I would definitely be happy to tell you all that I have completed my post- graduation in 2010 and my studying phase in life has come to a temporary stop this year until again I rejuvenate it with the hope of adding a doctorate degree beside my name.

The most joyous moment of the year would be the vacation days I had taken this year and had visited many tourist spots - Srisailam, Jaipur, Agra, Mathura and Delhi. I have shared my travelogues with this blog which would be definitely reminding me time and again about the happy days I had.

Compared to previous years, this year, I had watched many good movies both in theatres and in my television. Had engrossed in the habit of checking for good films regularly in television at 9 pm and were lucky many days to grab one. I have never maintained the list of movies I watch and this would be one among my to-do list in the next year.

On the personal front, 2010 saw me transferring a little more responsible than earlier, though I still remain the same crying girl when I don’t find solutions to my problems. As I face new difficulties in life every day, I become stronger and find new answers to them too. This is the year, when I turned almost to a single-parent child and this is the year when I can really compare myself between periods of time. Now at the end of this year, I can proudly say that the volume of tears I shed has reduced to a great limit. I wish I reduce it year by year.

On the professional side, 2010 taught me many things technically as well as on the managerial front. I got noticed and appreciated well for the work done and I am looking forward for an even better upcoming year @ my office.

How could I forget writing about my weekend dance classes which I enjoyed the maximum. The rhythm and the beat to which we dance inside the four walls to the tune of the dance teacher’s voice was just awesome and I used to be really really excited every week to learn new things. 2010 was the year which showed me my stamina to dance and my interests in pursuing it to a next level. Though I could not continue learning for the past one month, I am sure I will soon find a new dance teacher @ my new location in 2011.

Healthwise, except for the month of December during which I am suffering a terrible cough, I was happy to say that I was fit, thanks to the nature and my lifestyle. Wishing you all a very happy and prosperous new year. May health, wealth and happiness embrace you in 2011 :).

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

K & K

The though of writing this post came to me when I had to part with 2 wonderful persons I met in my life. Both their surnames start with K and I am not sure if I can reveal their names in my blogspace. It would be good if it is this way as K & K. I met these two guys in my office as my team mates and they have now become as friends rather than colleagues and will be for long time to come. This post is more about treasuring the memories which I had shared with them and a small dedication to these 2 guys.

Let me introduce the first guy to you. I met this guy when I was first inducted to my project in my company. He was a year senior to me in the team and I still clearly remember the day and the scene of our first introduction. The first help he did to me was identifying some training portal in our office intranet site. The friendship with him was like instant and I started feeling so comfortable asking him anything right from day one. I am good in making new friends but not close friends. I choose them very carefully just like anybody. But this guy can be close to anyone and he has this awesome talent to attract anyone. After the first meet, he had helped me so much so much that I cannot repay him neither my family can. As I was new to Hyderabad, any small help regarding the place was rendered by him at any hour of the day. We slowly became neighbors in the office cubicle apart from being team mates. He had given me so much space that I can even fight with him if our ideas contradict. Also I can share with him all my personal and professional life taking him as my confidant. I used to do all work related things which he used to say but not some silly stuff. I used to postpone it and he used to hate that so much and we end up in a fight. But, slowly in these three years, he understood me and started calling me as lazy and making me fun instead of fighting when he needs any small work from me. I had given him in turn so much space in my world that he never hesitate to give me Supari, ask for a casual treat, or involve me in any kind of personal boyish conversations. A selfless friend who can do anything for someone who ask him help and a joyous person to be with. More responsible person for his age when I compare with other guys I met. If you allow him, he can lead your life also. You should be kind of careful with him. Just joking – I meant to say he can give you advice on anything he knows. He also has the sweet character of telling that he does not know this or that on which he doesn’t have knowledge. Very few guys accept their ignorance on matters. We had shared some wonderful moments in office chatting in sametime (internal chat) even though our cubicles are close enough to talk in person. I am so lucky to meet him in my life and I am definitely going to treasure this friendship and all those times we shared forever no matter how far I go from him.

Ok now I got to stop writing about the first person and start the next as I am very sure when my second friend reads this, he will be so restless to read about him. Yes this person is exactly opposite to the one about whom I had mentioned a few lines back. Our first meeting was in an office internal team meeting where I was introduced to him by my manager. He was a bit late to the meeting (oops sorry, I can’t forget that!) Soon after the meet, he flied to onsite and our initial conversations were only through sametime mostly about work and about technical difficulties I face. He is a very reserved person and it took me almost one year to make him comfortable when he speaks with me. But he changed with due course of time. Now, I would say that he has so much right to ask me anything personal or professional especially he would be the first to ask me treat for a small thing like rain in my hometown, for the feats which I achieved some 5 years back, for my post graduation completion even before my results are out and the list for the reasons for he asking me treat is endless. He had devised some 10 reasons when I gave him his pre-final treat. A technical guide he was to me and whose wavelength I matched with and I could understand whatever he speaks. I mean he used to tell only 4 words in a sentence that he wish to speak and the rest you got to discover it by yourself. He doesn’t take too much pain in anything in life. I would not use the term careless, but I would put it as light-headed. Next time when someone ask me quote for being cool I would rather say cool as my friend instead of cool as cucumber. He is a big fan of Sachin and we have shared very good moments in office talking about cricket matches. He hates my mother tongue and never foregoes a chance to pull my leg when he grabs a chance. It was so easy to share anything with this person so casually just like talking day to day affairs. A very simple human being with not much interest but some deep passions and he never gives up any task thinking that it is impossible. I am really happy that I got mentored by him during my initial days of learning in IT field.

I wish I hold the friendship and contact with these two persons in this life or any more lives to come if such any exists. And I shall wish for the well being of them and their family. Hey you two guys out there, Thank you for everything you gave me all the 3 years and I wish you success, prosperity and good health in all your new ventures in life.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Journey to North India - 3

Day 4, 5, 6 – Delhi Days: November 3, 4 & 5.

A proper planning for 3 days was done prior visiting Delhi – One day for local Delhi Sight Seeing, one day for Mathura & Agra and the another day for only shopping in the country capital. One our first day in Delhi, we visited Akshardam temple – a wonder piece of architecture and intricate carvings. The place was so neat and so beautiful. Everywhere I turned, I could find sculptures depicting Hindu mythology. After the great chola temples, this is the first temple seeing which I was awe struck and fell short of words to describe the beauty of the construction. We spent nearly 2 hours in slowly viewing each and every pillar of the temple. The ceiling inside the temple had so many layers within telling many stories. The temple was surrounded by huge elephant carvings – a variety of elephants and stories related to them. A lotus garden carving with the fountain was also so elegant in the outside. I could take only a long shot of the temple as photography was prohibited within the temple premises. Coming outside, we took the Metro to Karol Bagh and spent nearly 4 hours shopping on the first day itself. From Karol Bagh, aunt took us to Paalika Bazaar did a good bargain on all the goods we purchased there. Time flies away so fast when we roam in the streets and in that mild chill weather of Delhi, walking on the roads was superb. We did a little circle in the Connaught Place and took an auto back to the hotel for our hot and spicy Tamil food waiting for us.

Day 5: Rather telling me as a devotee to Lord Krishna, I would like to be called as a fan of him. Meeting his birth place was like a dream come true to me. The day 5 of our trip saw us traveling to Mathura which is on the way to Agra. Our Punjabi driver took us in his Indica cab to show Mathura, Vrindavan and Agra. Our first break in the cab journey was Vrindavan where there was a beautiful Krishna temple inside which I can take numerous snaps. Never before and nowhere else I had a chance like this. Beautifully adored and decorated Krishna and Radha gave me many poses for my camera. The black face of his still lingers in front of my eyes. I just loved the idols over there. Next we went to the actual birth place of Krishna. All my life till now, I had enjoyed hearing stories of Krishna, his birth, his pranks and his upbringing. So it was so much thrilling to go see those places in real. The myths and the stories I have heard were built upon these places and I was so lucky to have seen these in my trip. Many would have known that Krishna was born inside a Jail and I saw a baby Krishna idol in a dark cell for which daily pooja was going on. We bought some beautiful souvenirs in the Mathura temple premises. I bought a glowing Krishna baby statue and other pictures of him for all my friends. I finally settled for myself a very very tiny Krishna statue which goes inside my wallet. 

Once outside Mathura our excitement started pumping up as we were heading towards the wonder of the world. The white glamour held for us was open to our eyes after a short walk. The place was unusually less crowded to our lady lucks. What do I say seeing the Taj Mahal – an eternal beauty? I am not good in describing such wonders in my blog. We took lots and lots of snaps focusing it from all angles and in a variety of poses. I took a small video covering the walls of Taj and its precious stone carvings. The white marble with rubies and emeralds was so soft and serene. A symbol of love it was for Shah Jahan and the image of it lasted for long time in our minds and souls. We spent a leisurely time of 3 hours in the Taj mahal premises and then headed to Agra fort. We hired a guide who explained us again the history of the fort. We caught a glimpse and a distant view of Taj Mahal from Agra Fort. There were many places inside the Agra Fort I could relate to the scenes in many movies which I had seen, especially Jodha Akbar. The Agra fort could be a little more neat and maintained well being a heritage monument. At the entrance of Agra Fort and Taj Mahal, I bought a few more souvenirs to treasure the memories in tiny things. Our day 5 ended after a non-stop ride from Agra to Delhi thanks to our driver’s driving skills we reached safely and securely to our hotel room.

The next day was the festival of lights and Delhi was lit up with all lamps and people getting ready to invite the goddess Lakshmi to their homes. And we were also getting ready to spend our last day of our vacation as much enthusiastically as we can. We called our relatives and shared our diwali wishes and got ready as early as we can in the morning to do a one –day Delhi Sight seeing. Our first alighting was the President House and the Janpath road. We saw the Parliament houses and the long roads in Delhi which I have seen in TV during the Parades till that day. Next we went to pay our homage to the Amar Jawans in the India gate. A foreign tourist over there wanted to take a snap of 5 of us as we were so colorfully dressed on the day of Diwali.

From India gate, our guide took us to Qutub Minar. We walked inside and recollected our history lessons seeing the Qutub Minar and of course my metallurgical theory at the sight of the Iron Pillar. Compared to the monuments we have seen so far, though these were less rated we did not want to miss them in our tour itinerary. Our next place to visit was Lotus Temple another beautiful architecture – a replica of the Australia’s lotus opera. A small meditation inside gave us some more energy to continue our journey inside Delhi. Our trip was unluckily prior to President Obama’s India visit and because of that Raj Ghat was closed for security reasons. My mother was terribly upset as she was a true Gandhian and she had come all the way to Delhi to visit Raj Ghat. I had promised her to bring her once again back to Delhi to fulfill her wish. Hopefully I should keep my promise. Indira Gandhi’s martyr place was also closed. The driver took us through the roads in which our politicians stay. He dropped us in Red Fort entrance and gave us time all by ourselves to explore Chandni chowk and Red fort. We walked in the crowded streets of Chandni chowk searching for a big bangle market similar to the one showed in the movie of Fanaa. Sad I did not find one such but had a good walking exercise through out. In the evening we entered Red Fort and our trip ended seeing the sound and light show inside Red Fort which was kind of boring and too shivering to sit in the open arena. We returned to our hotel, packed our bags, checked out and reached the Station to catch our return train at correct time. One thing I felt so bad in Delhi was the man pulled richshaws. I wish the next time I visit Delhi there are only Metros and no more human pulled vehicles. I can’t see them pulling us for their living. I am sinned sitting inside the richshaws a couple of times and I don’t know when I will get rid of those sins. 

As my aunt and cousin headed towards Tamilnadu, we booked the direct train from Delhi to Chennai. I, Mom and sister got down at Warangal and after waiting for 4 hours for our next train to Hyderabad, we missed the train and it was a tragical and perfect ending for our adventurous trip to travel with all our huge baggage in a bus to MGBS Bus station in Hyderabad. Altogether the trip was a success and we had enjoyed thoroughly hour to hour. Though there were some misunderstandings and difficulties among us it was a pleasure to have a 5 day vacation amidst our busy daily routine. Wish to have many more vacations like this. Finally I completed my first big travelogue and if you are interested I can share personally the 500 snaps which we took to your mail ids. Drop your mail ids in the comments section.

Journey to North India - 2

Day 1 – A train journey I would never forget. October 31st 2010.

The early morning wee hours of day 1 of our journey saw us wrapped up warmly in the station of Kacheguda waiting for the Jaipur train to arrive. Nowhere else I had seen the ticket checker checking our tickets in the platform of the departure station itself. I realized the reason for this only after boarding the train. It was jam packed with very little space to breathe. There was no kind of normalcy prevailing in the compartments. I cursed all my stars to start my journey in midst of this crowd. But slowly we got settled down and had a little sleep. There were so much fights and misunderstanding with the co-passengers. Yet we managed to enjoy the journey playing some journey games and reading and non-stop chatting in our language which irritated most of the others in the train. While we could understand Hindi, they were left helpless other than to stare at us talking in a language which none of them could understand.

Jaipur Memoirs: November 1st

Day 2 saw me getting down in the pink city of India. I should say honestly that the city was clean and less polluted. We contacted the Railway accommodation centre and got a big room to freshen up ourselves. And then we booked for one-day sightseeing tour package in Rajasthan Tourism Office which was in the Jaipur station itself. As we had very less time before the tourist bus started, so much of commotion within ourselves and it so ended up in a first fight of the tour between mom and aunt.

The Tour package we opted was a Full Day Tour from 9.00 A.M. to 6.00 P.M by a Non-A/C bus charged 200 bucks per person. After a small breakfast in the bus, we alighted at the Birla Temple – the same white marble one which I had marveled for his cleanliness and the architecture. The guide who accompanied us for the tour was very strict with the timings and that has irritated a little at times. But as time passed by, we got used to his constant bugging and his watch. Our Second monument to visit for the day was Hawa Mahal (Wind Palace) in which there was hundreds of windows in the front. The palace was also slanting a little towards the back. When I had asked why the reason was that the ladies in the palace those days used to have a view of the city without being watched by others. I don’t have anything to say on this stupid idea of keeping women within four walls. Our tour itinerary included only the Front View and I was sad that I could not visit the Mahal inside. But took a couple of snaps and proceeded to the Observatory aka Jantar Mantar. Had a recap of all the physics and measuring instruments studied in school days. Two foreigners from Singapore gave us good company in Jantar Mantar and it was astonishing to listen to the details of Jantar Mantar how in olden days, the calculation of days, months, star positions and astronomy were studied.

Next, we went to the City Palace – a private palace owned by the King’s generation. It was damn costly to have a view of it and hence we had seen it from outside. Thus we saved a few time to check out the local people and colorful shops outside the observatory and infront of the City Palace. I saw a snake charmer first time in life and he was making the snake to dance to his music. They were all dressed so differently with all those multi colored turbans. After buying some souvenirs from there, the guide took us to some Rajastan crafts & arts gallery. We had a live demonstration of how the peacock and elephant patterns in dress were made with natural colours. It was a pleasant morning and we headed to our next tourist spot – the Jal Mahal. Here, I had the chance to ride on a camel and take some beautiful shots which I could treasure for long. It was so nice to sit on a high place on the camel’s back. While I was enjoying the height, my poor sister was scared to hell and got down immediately. The City Palace was so calm and serene in midst of a lake. I breathed fresh air and enjoyed the cool breeze hitting my hair and face.

Satisfied well with the beauty of the city we had seen so far, we moved next to the magnificent forts – Jaigarh Fort, Nahargarh Fort and the Amber Fort. The Madhavendra Palace inside the Nahargarh fort had seven portions looking exactly the same as the other. Each portion had a big portico, so many rooms and a long corridor with many windows on both sides. We turned to kids playing there and running the whole corridor and hiding from each other. All five of us had a very nice time in that palace giving all royal poses for the snaps. We had a quick lunch which was surprisingly tasty in the Nahargarh fort. Then we went to the Jaigarh Fort where there were lots of monkeys than the tourists. We walked so much to see the giant cannon kept protectively. We also heard the story of the treasure unraveled from inside the Jaigarh Fort during the emergency period by Indira Gandhi and the then queen of Jaipur.

As time moved on, the strength in our legs slowly got reduced and there was just one monument left for us to enjoy before we rest for the day. It was Amber Fort and there were thousands of tourists flogging into this fort on the day when we went. All those Diwani-Aaam, Diwani-Khaas, King’s private room, Queen’s Palace gave us the total history of those days and the sophisticated life which the royal family spent. The Sheesh mahal – the hall of mirrors inside the fort was gorgeous and there were so many mirrors in a single hall which reflect the sun rays in all directions lighting and warming up the room inside magnificently. We also saw an arrangement for cooling up the rooms using repeated flow of water on the sides of the rooms. I witnessed a very aged foreigner in wheel chair interestingly listening to the stories of Indian rulers inside the Fort and he was taking a video of the entire palace. He would have definitely traveled so far and waited long years to visit this world heritage site. I am proud to say that our country has so much marvelous architecture to wonder about. That ended the Jaipur sightseeing and we were back in the station to catch our next train to Chirawa.

Day 3 in Pilani: November 2nd

The train journey from Jaipur to Chirawa was terribly cold inspite of wearing so much woolen stuff. We managed to get separate compartment but the mad guys next to us were constantly trying to assault on us and show their heroism. My mom was in constant fear throughout the night when she guarded us sacrificing her sleep. Thanks to our stars and karma we reached safely in Chirawa station – a small one in the North Western Railways. Outside the station, we boarded a Jeep to reach Pilani and lodged in a safe room recommended by the BITS. The next day morning was the D-day and I and my sister went to present our dissertation. Mine turned out to be a horrible day answering to all those questions by the professor. She was just making me appear as an ass who knows nothing of the project I did. I had managed to finish the formalities of forms filling up and submitting the reports. Thankfully I had secured a Fair grade in it and passed the course with Flying colours. After our work in the BITS institute, we immediately left for Delhi. To reach Delhi, we first took a cab to Loharu and from there boarded a train to Rewari. From Rewari, we took the next train to Old Delhi Railway Station. The journey was tiring and at night 10 o’ clock, we checked into our cozy hotel room in Delhi. We had booked this hotel room earlier and it was close to a Tamil Restaurant. Both our boarding and lodging were secure as we had some Tamil contacts – thanks to my aunt. Day 3 ended with a good night sleep and the adventurous trips in trains and running in the stations ended for all good.

Journey to North India - 1

Pre – Trip Plans:

The plan to visit North India in the November of 2010 started as early as I had enrolled for my M.S couse in BITS Pilani. As a part of curriculum I will have to travel to BITS Campus to submit and present my dissertation. As the work is just for one day, I had combined the trip of visiting Jaipur & Delhi.

Ever since the dates for my viva was booked, the twirl and twist happened in my life was just “too much” to be put in a word. To my great surprise and joy my chithi(aunt) and my cousin(Akshaya) promised us(me, mom & my sister) to join the trip amidst their big schedule of Yoga competitions. After spending considerable time with Indian Railways website, I had managed to book tickets via 2 routes
1. Kacheguda(Hyd) to Jaipur
2. Secunderabad to Agra and Agra to Jaipur

You may ask why 2 routes. Though planning well ahead say nearly 75 days, I could get only WL tickets via the 1st and shortest route because my vacation fall around the dates of grand Indian festival of Lights.

I was just happy that my return tickets are confirmed. I started writing this travelogue in the train and it was just so fun to write as usual. Hope my readers also enjoy with me.

Day Zero: October 30, 2010

The day before the travel – Gosh it was just amazing if I look back now. All of my 30 days before the journey started with checking the PNR status. I had tried all my possibilities available with India Railways to get my ticket confirmed. You may not believe me if I say that I met some CRO of Kacheguda station to do some ticket confirmation through emergency quota as I was traveling for an educational purpose, but that ended in utter failure. Yes of course there is a legal option in Railways to do so and I had done earlier in Southern Railways.

My eyes got open when my cousin and aunt arrived at Secunderabad from their hometown to join us for the trip. Both of them never hesitate to travel in train for longer duration. They were just awesome companions for train journey. Both were so weird that they don’t waste time for a small span. They kept doing something or the other like reading, stitching, planning for sister’s wedding etc etc throughout the day/night. Coming to my day before the journey – I had to complete some final work of my dissertation, a complete packing for the trip, checklist of important things to be taken, doing a bit of last minute shopping, discussing about some wedding events that was soon approaching when I had done the trip and the day never ended.

The tickets slowly moved from WL to RAC and we decided to take the route from Kacheguda to Jaipur though it was RAC and though the 2nd route we had confirmed tickets. We did not want to waste time in journey – it was a matter of hardly 4 hours extra but the final decision was made by mom for some reason I don’t remember now. The whole of day zero went in packing and repacking. Afternoon I had completed my project work. In the evening, when I reached home to take a bit of rest before the journey, I was reminded how stupid and careless I had forgotten to take a copy of the presentation from my office harddisk. Rushed to office which is nearly 15 kms from home in a busy Saturday traffic and it took nearly 2 hours of my precious time. What would you call me if I say you that I did a small shopping in midst of all this. The day 1 of my journey was about to begin…….

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Happy Weekend

I am so happy right now. This song is making me happier. An old song from the tamil movie – Aaha in which the hero sings so happily after meeting his love. Why does such romantic songs always written for male characters in the movies? Does a woman not feel this much happiness and love when she meets someone so exciting in her life. I have become so romantic in the past 48 hours. Is the effect of loneliness or watching good movies in the weekend? The weekend was all together fun in spite of sending bye to sister and mom who left a week early prior to my sister’s wedding leaving me alone to attend office for 3 days next week before I join them. Oops, for the first time in this space I am mentioning about my own elder sister’s marriage. She is moving to the next stage in her life – getting the love of her life all in a week’s time from now. And as usual the great Indian wedding started off with so much excitement and pompous arrangements. I have shopped to my heart level best and planned to look best in the 3 days coming up.

Watched Harry potter 7 – 1st part 3 hours back and was slightly disappointed by the slow pace of the movie. Though lots of things said in the book was covered in the movie, I still felt that there should be only one 7th part and not part 1 and 2. I did not hear the famous Harry Potter music but ogled and loved the look of Harry. He is just Harry to me and definitely Radcliffe. Only with his lightning scar on his forehead, I love him. Ron and hermoine were just good as usual. Nothing more to tell about the movie.

Finished a book in 3 hours of time – “Keep the Change” by Nirupama Subramanian. Cried along with the character of Damayanthi while reading, but ended up being so much enthusiastic after finishing the book, that I ate the whole lot of rice left as if starved for a week.  It was just a plain contemporary Indian writing to which any working girl in South India can relate to. Lots of expectations yet constraints, yearning to be outspoken yet traditional and I loved the pace of the novel. Looking forward to a great week ahead. Will be sharing a few of my sister’s marriage celebrations in this space once I am back. Btw my travelogue to North India is not getting my precious time dedicated to it. Wish to have more time to spend it lazily as well as usefully.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Guzaarish – a plea

I like watching movies alone (don’t ask me why) and I am kind of getting used to it. I am going to add the wish of seeing a movie all alone in a theatre to my bucket list of wishes :) after today. You get a nice feeling attached to life after watching a very few movies. This feeling can’t be expressed in words, but can definitely be by tears and the Guzaarish movie did it. After reading the story line of the movie, I was very sure that the director is not going to deceive me much. It has been ages since I got my expectations fulfilled after watching a movie. This post is definitely not going to be a review sort of thing. It is those 2 and half hours I was with Ethan Mascarenhas and the time I lived close to his life.

There would have been definitely many stories which had come up this way and we had heard the issue of Euthanasia in our newspapers now and then. But this is my first experience in seeing it in characters played wonderfully by none other than the charming and handsome magician – Hrithik Roshan. Ethan Mascarenhas – what a beautiful name it is first of all. Not even for once did I get bore in the movie hearing so many times everyone saying Mr.Mascarenhas. A magician taken revenge by his rival and becomes paralyzed for the whole of his life. The actor with ever-dancing legs is tied to his 4X6 inch bed and 30X60 inch room for a long period of 14 years. His caretaker Sophia – Sofeeah(that’s how Ethan calls her) is such a dedicated lady who never takes a day off in her 12 year career. He applies for a Euthanasia petition to the Indian Justice Department, to get the right to die just like any human being has the right to live. Ethan Mascarenhas did not give up his hope in the first year of his accident. After living with it for 14 years, he had come to this decision. Did he succeed in that? If you love emotions and you can just be moved seeing a person in the screen cry and if you enjoy watching heart touching stories, then you should definitely watch this movie in the screen.

Ethan’s Guzaarish to let him die and his appeal to go with his decision - Am I with him? Yes I am. I vote for him. I cannot see him suffer, no matter who ever it is. Rather than the suffering, let them sleep peacefully for long. There are so many arguments going on in this World whether Euthanasia is legal or illegal. Who cares? Who else apart from the guy who suffers has the right to his life? Nobody but he/she can feel the pain. I have come across so many such people in life and I cannot do anything but cry for them. The same happens with many around us. I saw so many people coming crying out of the Guzaarish movie. Tears were in the edge of the eyes for many one like me. Death should be natural as contrast to birth in this world. I am not into the funda of dying when you are suffering but individual cases like Ethan Mascarenhas can be definitely and uniquely given different judgement. Why do we need to have a generalized idea of Suicide and Mercy killing are just not acceptable. Live is too short and just so beautiful that every damn soul wish to live it with dignity and grace. I just wish to end this post saying the same words from the movie – Life is too short and let us not repent for anything that made us smile and try to make it a little more worthy.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mr. & Mrs. Iyer - Romance in midst of Violence

Don’t look away; don’t look away….. Does this lyric remind you of something? Can a movie be this heart warming and soul touching to us? The movie I am talking about is Mr & Mrs.Iyer directed by the award winning. I started adoring/loving/being mad right from the day I watched it first. I wish to watch movies alone in a closed room with no disturbance. I guess this was the first movie I watched that way sometime before 7 – 8 years at my cousin’s room and I must say it was a pleasant watch. After that night, many nights I have dreamt about meeting such a guy in life who is close to the character of Rahul Bose in the movie.

After all this years, why am I suddenly writing about this movie? Coz I love writing about things which I love, about movies which I adore and about persons whom I admire. As it is a very old movie, I shall just give a glimpse of the story and the characters in it, though I cannot finish the blog in fewer words. Raja Choudary, a wild life photographer promises to be of help to a new mother who travels alone in a bus with her kid somewhere in the North East to catch a train to Calcutta. The mother is none other than my favorite Bengali Actress – Konkana Sen Sharma. Meenakshi Iyer (pronounced with a double e) as she is named in the movie is an orthodox Tamil Brahmin who lives with her conservative in-laws. As promised, Raja helps the mother to calm down her hungry crying kid and he is good with kids also apart being a professional photographer.

On the way, the bus stops due to a road diversion. In due course, the scene changes to a river bed where the bus gets halted as there has been a guy killed by some religious fanatics and violence starts protruding in that area. The curfew has been on and the passengers are strictly prohibited to leave the bus. But our photographer gets ready to leave the bus asking Meenakshi to take care of the rest of the journey all by herself. When asked why, he reveals he is not a Hindu as his name says, but his real name is Jehangir and he cannot risk the lives of others by staying inside the bus in the Hindu Locality. Can you imagine what Meenakshi utters when she hears this? “OMG….I drank the water he drank”…. Such an ignorant lady she is but then cursing her stars, she gets into the bus.

Before Rahul aka Raja alias Jehangir gets his bags, a gang force opens the bus and kills an elderly couple. That was really unhuman to kill them just because their names were Khan and Fathima. Mrs.Iyer when approached to reveal her religious identity saves Jehangir by introducing him as Mr.Iyer. Here the story takes a wild turn and gets more than interesting than expected. What made her to do this in a spur of moment? She who repents for drinking water from the same bottle he drank just because he is of a different religion had humanity and respect left with her for a person’s life. Nothing is more important than the life of a person. Is this statement really true? I am not going more into this now.

Coming back to the movie, as the curfew will be for longer time, the passengers walk to a nearby town for a night stay. Since all the available rooms were already full, Mr & Mrs.Iyer get shield in a forest guest house with the help of a patrol police officer. Meenakshi complains that there is only one room and no vegetarian food. Hahaha it was so funny and innocent of her to cry like this in the mid of a forest. I wonder as to whether such people like Meenakshi exist even today? I say this because she is a post-graduate and she cannot act in a silly way after all the intelligence she has got from her religion and from her upbringing. Both of them somehow adjust and manage to make a plan to reach the station to get a train to Calcutta with the help of Police officer. On the night before they start, Meenakshi witness the cruel death of a guy by some violent mob. She gets so panicked and Jehangir comes to her rescue. He is so calm and so caring. Gosh I just love the character of him. The friendship they build during the journey ends in the railway station where the real Mr.Iyer comes to pick up Meenakshi and the movie ends with the lyric – Don’t look away; don’t look away as Jehangir walks bidding bye to both of his new friends.

The scenes at the forest guest house, the acting of Meenakshi when she was asked about their marriage by the co-passengers, the photograph shots taken by Jehangir and to the top of it the minutes spent by them in the train – all were just amazing. Though the movie stresses the violence prevailing and the losing of humanity in the minds of our people, I was just focused on the part played by Konkana and Rahul Bose. They are just too good for the role of co-passengers. The feeling of untrust towards Rahul Bose is just crystal clear in the eyes of Konkana and the love and care she feel from him is just awesome. I love the attitude of Rahul Bose. I wish they both come together again in another such movie.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Ladder 49 - A movie review

Saw this movie when telecasted in the air last week. English movies are capturing my attention and time so much in these lonely days at home {Mom is out of station}. So many thoughts ran in my mind after math the movie. The plot or the story to be more apt is about a fire fighter. The movie did not have any bang and sophisticated openings of the hero. Neither did the hero look so good and dashing as how the Indian heroes look if they play the role of a life saver. Jack Morris – of Ladder 49 team of the Fire fighter’s club gets trapped in a huge building crashing slowly as fire engulfs him inch by inch. His colleagues and his Captain are in constant touch with him through Radio and they are trying their very best to get Jack out of fire. In the last few minutes amidst fire, Jack starts re-collecting the proud and cherished moments of his life.

Jack is not shown as a hero in the first scene. He is just like any other person who has just qualified to be a fire – person. He has not saved any fire-victims yet. He is a trainer in the Ladder -49 squad. His colleagues make fun of him for being so dumb. He slowly learns the art of facing the fire and the tips and tricks to safeguard him and the rest of the lives when facing a fire accident. Initially he even cleans the office rooms and the lobbies as his part of work. The way his character has been structured from brick 1 should be appreciated. Jack has so much fun in the Fire Department office, ogles at women in the super market, tries to woo someone and win her heart. He gets married to the women he fell in love with. The wedding is so grand with all his friends and family present. He gets slowly experienced in his work and has hands on in the field.

With the slow improvement in his career starts the problem in his family too. The seriousness of his career and the risk he takes everyday whenever the fire alarms buzz creates a great fear in the mind of Jack’s wife. She is not able to live daily with the fear whether or not her husband will come alive home that day. She urges him to give up the fireman job. But the humanity which Jack has and the zeal to save human lives becomes the high priority for him. He somehow consoles his wife and keeps moving with his personal as well as professional ladder. Years pass and they get 2 kids. Nearly 10 years time has passed and he recollects all his cherished moments when he is at the verge of dying inside the fire erupted apartment. The happiest days – the day of his marriage, the day when he becomes father, the 5th birthday of his second child, the day when he was awarded and honored for his service and many more parties he had with his colleagues and his wife.

The movie ends with the ever – feared Red car arriving at Jack’s home announcing his death. Many scenes were touching and it just reminded me again and again that humanity is still left in the hearts of so many people around us. The whole world has not turned altogether selfish. There are still numerous selfless people like Jack who doesn’t think twice to put their own life first to save others. I salute them and honor them with whole heartedly. I can do only this and I shall remain selfless to the extent possible. The movie gave me a strong lesson that just because others are selfish in this world, it does not mean that I got to be also in the same way. I just had to stop and think about these numerous self less, life sacrificing fire fighters, army men and so many others who should be our idols and I wish to see many such movies to remind me often that humanity is still left in this world to embrace.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Enthiran - from my eyes

I sincerely advice the die-hard core fans of Rajnikanth not to proceed reading this post further. The post also has some spoilers – Read it on your own interests.

The last time when I watched Rajni’s movie was such a great experience. The movie was Sivaji and it was my first ever experience of watching a movie on the first day first show. I accompanied my cousin and I guess I was the only girl in the whole movie theater. But watching Enthiran was not that easy for me. I tried booking tickets for the Friday evening show but to our great dismay, I could get only 4 days later. The day was Tuesday – not a weekend to enjoy the movie first of all. I was little tired when I stepped out of office. Thanks to the day’s traffic, I managed to reach the multiplex well ahead in time. The expectations from my end to any regional movie are really high after watching some really good movies in English. But I don’t want to miss the fun in hearing to my native language comedy and dialogues written by late Mr.Sujatha. On top of it, who doesn’t wish to see Shankar’s movie.

Coming to the movie, did I enjoy it? --- Yes I did like the first half of the movie. About the second half, I got little tired of watching machines ruling the world. If a man controls a machine no matter, how sophisticated the machine is – I can watch it. But if one and only a machine is acting on its own – please spare me. I cannot watch it and I have avoided watching so many English movies because of this reason. I cannot think that it is the man who made that machine when I watch the machine doing all sorts of magic. A human touch is what I wish the movie should have.

I accept that the visuals were great and the animations and the new technology implementations were brilliant. And as per the story I can also admit that the movie is totally a science fiction and I am not ignorant to ask questions like -- Why this? How could it be? What is the logic? -- for any incidents happening in the movie. But I cannot stop myself to ask why does a Robot which reads Rig Veda, all the Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, the rights & wrongs of the world cannot think twice before starting to love Sana, the fiancee of its own creator. Thanks to the writer who justifies this act of Robot in the scene when Chitti tries to kiss Sana and he says that it is not betrayal but only love and instead it asks Dr.Vaseegaran to do a sacrifice for his research. After all the same old saying – All is fair is love and War is given as the answer.

Again, no one else can answer to the not so simple question of – “Does God exist?” As simple as how it is answered in this movie. It was really wonderful to hear to such a rational reply. I should also admit that the pre-intermission sequence when Robot doing a complicated pregnancy got me goosebumps. But the non-stop fights and the hundreds of same face were quite tiring and I can’t resist myself to look at my fastrack more than necessary. It is just a one-time watch to know what the hype is all about and nothing more than that. I wish to watch more movies like Inception in which I am bound to use my brain and not like Enthiran for which I can simply leave my logic bound mind behind at home. It is true that I hooted and howled just like any other Rajni fan for the opening sequence but it is also truer that the movie did not impress me as much as I wished it for.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Where shall we go this Summer - A book review

This book is penned by the Sahitya Academy Winner - Anita Desai who is also the mother of the Booker Prize winner - Kiran Desai. I have come across these authors many a times, but reading their writing for the first time. I am not sure if I get the right thing what the author intended to say. My understanding of the book is right here for u to read. A very small read of just 150 pages made me feel so much for the plight of so many women who get used to their surroundings without any complaints. Sita - the protagonist of the novel alights on the Manori island with a baby in her womb and with her daughter and son on the Monsoon of 1967. She escapes from her daily routines of the busy Bombay life and tries to soothe her nerves down in the breeze and pleasant weather of Manori. Situated in Manori, her father's home has turned now into more or less a place which has only dirt and dust enveloped around it. The narration does not tell you clearly why is she fed up with her life and what was the reason made her run away from her responsibilities. The clarity in the reasons is dull because, those were not considered as some big issues in the Society we live.

Was she able to find the peacefulness and come out of her solitude in that island? Nothing happens dramatic in Sita's life at the end of the story. Her loyal and truthful husband Raman comes and takes her back once again to the same life. No domestic violence is thrust upon Sita nor is she losing her independence. But the daily chores of the kids fight, maid servant's duel, neighbour's gossip, the hurried city life - these all were few reasons for her escape to the island. To her dismay, the magical island then, didnot succeed now in giving her what she wanted. After sometime, she learnt that hiding all her fears and complaints and being silent to what all happening around her is the only thing she can do. Sita slowly gets used to her life and returns back to Bombay with her family. Is she happy in doing this or does she have no way other than doing this? No matter how many monsoon comes, she can only run away for a while from all this. She had to return back again to the same chores and she can only wait for the next monsoon to answer to the question - Where shall we go this Summer?. How many of us are like Sita who cannot express which suffocates them and not able to find the proper get-rid for it? We get used to complaints and fears and we live with it in this fast - turning life.

Am I insane

What do I want? Why is my mind not ready to accept anything which I come across and be cool and calm? Rather it is just wavering from one wish to another wish and trying to make myself look upset all the time. The wierd dreams of getting married or something related to marriage has been haunting my early morning sleeps for the past 4 days. How come I get these dreams regularly when I am least prepared to get married now. Is it true that mind always searches something to be sad and to be upset? If so it is happening with me. I have nothing to worry so much right now. In spite of it, I am like - yuck I dont want this kind of happenings with me. I want to be cool and do something about this kind of thinking. Is it because I hear so many news from so many people who are getting married. Am I becoming jealous about them? or is it the strangest thought that arose in me that i will remain unmarried for long years to come? But why is this marriage a big issue with me now? I have been saying all these days that I dont want to get married soon. I want some more time. But I am sure why I want that much time. To find the right person? To make myself face some new person? or To get accustomed to new environment. No body is forcing me to think like this. Something is missing in life. I lost some grip of life to which I was clinging to till now. What is it? It is really difficult to find that and make myself clear. May be I know that and I am not ready to accept it. Hence I guess I am just writing all this rubbish out here. I will have to definitely accept the fact that I will not get what I wanted. But what do i need? no body except me can say that. I dont want to "get used" to this sort of mentality, coz getting used to is the worst solution to any problem. Hopefully something different should happen to get me out of this feeling.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Books, books and more books

I have never been this crazy about buying and reading books all my life till this year. Might be I was never alone before and I had never this much time for myself earlier to spend in reading a book. From September 2010, I am going to allocate every month a little % of my Salary to buy some new books. My mom and sister do that regularly. Let me also try to do them. Hopefully I should read them all and enjoy reading. This post is about some of the places in this city where I get to grab some nice books. You guys should have noticed the Mahogany Wood Shelfari Shelf widget added in my blog. I am planning to buy a book shelf of that sort.

The best pastime for me and my mom during the weekends is to visit Landmark and browse through the books and the movies. From the starting of this year, January 1st, not even a month has passed without we missing the visit to Landmark. We were really thrilled in our first visit to see the huge hall with so many racks of books orderly placed under different genres – Indian fiction, World fiction, Bestsellers, Romance, Arts, Cookery, Literary fiction and more and more. It is just amazing to see some sale going on for the books for this month. I was lucky to get hold of the Nobel award winning book – One hundred years of Solitude for a good offer and I am reading it presently. Hopefully I should understand that literature at least to a range of 5 on a scale of 10. I have put my eye on so many other books which I had planned to get the next weekend. I and Mom can spend even 4 hours in Landmark without getting bored until we can bear the chillness of the air condition over there.

The British Library where we hold a family membership is another favorite hang-out of ours. It is a small library, but an ultra-modern one with new technologies, though with less number of books compared to the huge collection at Landmark, but I get to read rare and interesting books. The librarian and the assistant over there were so kind last weekend that they let me inside even without a library card.

During weekends, we hunt through out the new city for the old books stalls and the books which mostly I get are for my mom who reads so much of Mills & Boons. I like helping her out in the shops but I take extra caution not to touch any of those books. My hands are kind of allergic to that dust and the state of books. But then, I got my entire set of Harry Potter collections from these old book shops and they are not second-handed to my luck. They are of course pirated versions and I am sorry for it but I can’t afford the whole lot of original series.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Trip to Srisailam

It has been nearly 3 weeks after I am writing here about my trip to Srisailam. The monsoon showers in the catchment areas have filled up all the reservoirs of the state where I am residing. Having confirmed from a resource which said that the gates of Srisailam have been opened, we planned to view the beautiful dam site. We did not want to do a night stay in an unknown city; hence we decided to start early for the trip and return back on the same day. As per our schedule, we took the bus to Srisailam from Hyderabad’s Mahatma Gandhi Bus Station at 6’0 clock in the morning of August 14th. After my 3 year stay in Hyderabad, this was my first visit to MG Bus Station, as I never wish to travel by bus to any place. I always prefer trains rather than the state road transports. But this time, we had no other choice as the route had nearly 80 Kms of ghat section.

The Nallamala forest was just amazing and the weather was so pleasant. We reached the dam site by 12 after the zig zag cross ghat roads and the bumpy rides. The reservoir was nearly full but the gates have not been opened and I was so upset that I could not view the magnificent water gushing out of the gates. We had our lunch which we had taken from home in A.P Tourism Hotel. Surprisingly, the tourism facilities were neat and we spent much time in the back corridor of that hotel. From this place, we had a spectacular view of the reservoir and the Nallamala hills behind it. We went for a rope-car trip down the hill and a boat ride till the dam. The tourists were very less in these areas as most of the people were very eager to see SriSailam temple. We preferred enjoying the nature rather than standing in long queues to enter the sanctum sanctorum. I took lots of snaps and even after slowly visiting each spot, we had lots of idle time and we had to wait wait and wait and do nothing else to pass time. Finally as the clock struck 8, we boarded the bus for the return journey and reached home safely at early morning 3. The ride was quite a different experience and a bit tired too. I will have to upload the snaps in picasa soon.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Case Histories - A book review

It took me unusually long time, nearly 6 days to finish this novel – Case Histories by Kate Atkinson. The read was quite complicated for a difference. Similar to the other books, I lend from library, this story is also set on the land of English. The author presents us in the first 40 pages with 3 case histories. Case 1: A 4 year old girl – Oliver Land goes missing from the tent where she was sleeping with her sister. Case 2: A 27 year old young lady – Laura Wyre is murdered brutally on the day she was helping at her father’s office. Case 3: A new mother – Michelle kills her husband with a garden axe out of frustration created when her husband wakes up the sleeping kid. Michelle lands up in prison and the kid goes missing. These 3 incidents take place at different time periods. Nearly after a decade, army person turned private detective – Jackson handles these 3 cases. The whole story is about closing these 3 cases and finding out the culprits behind the 3 tragedies.

I have read many mystery stories where a single mystery is solved. But this is the first time where I get to read 3 mysteries getting unfolded in the same book as pages turn one by one. Usually the curiosity of finding the culprit lies within me if I am reading. But more than the eagerness, it was the brilliance of the author which enthralls me much. How difficult it would have been to link 3 stories into one. In the course of finding the murderer/kidnappers and the reason behind it, Jackson’s personal life is also narrated to us. The agony which he faces after his divorce and a painful past which keeps tormenting him now and then is also beautifully put in words in between these 3 case histories. I would rather consider it as 4 stories in a 500 – page book.

Even when I was in the final chapter and when the author has finished revealing the hidden facts, I was left in a state of thought as to who killed whom and how did Jackson become successful in his feat. After a while or rereading a few lines from the chapters before, I got satisfied with the theme. It was a complete pleasure in finding such different genres of books and the time to read them till late night. It was nearly 12 when I finished it yesterday. {I am OK compared to my mom and sister who sit till 3 to finish a book}.

I don’t want to write about the minute details and compile a list of the characters of the book as I always write in other reviews. The intention behind each case history is quite simple, but the way it was presented to us is like a simple fruit salad with 4 fruits presented in a very beautiful bowl and presented with a surprising and finger licking topping. The read was tiresome though but will remain in my memory for a long time. Do grab it for sure if you come across this book.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Day 7 of Positivity

Here is the 7th and final day of this theme of Positive moments, with a small story at the end.

1. I was happy to see the National Treasure Movie once more in Zee studio, the movie which I had seen many times. I never get bored seeing the same movie again and again, if it is a favorite of mine.

2. Thanks to the traffic in the road – I had a small nap in the bus on my way to office. Finding out positivism even in a terribly struck traffic is really cool.

3. I am thankful to all my friends who are with me making my life more lively and happy.

4. I am thankful to my parents for what and how I am today.

5. I am thankful to the nature to let me live in this world and breathe every minute.

I complete my 7 days of Positivity with this. The experience was really different and I had enjoyed thoroughly doing this. It has increased the way I look at things and the optimist in me has grown up well. I would like to quote a story from Mahabharat at this moment. I am not sure why I am narrating this at the end of this 7th day. It might be the effect of optimism and positivism. Once Yudhisthira and Duryodhana were asked to go individually and find how many good people and how many bad people are there in the city. When Duryodhana returned back from his survey, he was so much frustrated and came up to a conclusion that every single person in the country is bad. But when Yudhisthira went for his turn, he found that all persons are good and said that he could not find a single bad person in his country. This shows that good and bad – positive and negative all lie only in the eyes you look from. A healthy and optimistic way of life is what we all need and so be positive at all times and be happy.

P.S : I am too happy that this is my 50th post in my blog.

The Dark Holds No Terrors – A book review

Nowadays in British library apart from the books written by British authors and apart from the plots set in the English land, I also find books written by Indian authors and set in our own native land. These books help me in enjoying a light read and I can know many stories happening in our country. In that way, during my last library visit, I picked up this novel by Shashi Deshpande. Having read another novel of hers, I was quite confident that this book is going to be again a nice one and it turned true. The story is about Saritha – a doctor, mother of 2 kids – Renu and Abhi, wife of a not-so famous writer - Manu, daughter of orthodox parents and a sister of late brother Dhruva.

Has anyone come across a mother who hates her daughter so much to an extent that she detest to remember about her daughter even at her death bed? Saritha aka Saru has such a strong hearted mother. She was always found fault for her doings right from the time she entered this world. It was not her mistake to be born as a girl to those orthodox parents who wanted a boy instead. Even after getting a boy, Dhruva as their second child, Saru’s parents never stopped scolding her. Dhruva was 7-8 years old then. He used to be so afraid of the dark and always gets comfort when he sleeps with Saru, rather than sleeping alone as instructed by his mother. One rainy night, Saru takes an adventure to go to the outskirts of the city. To her dismay, Dhruva follows her and gets trapped in a mushy land and fall into a pond and give his life. For this unexpected tragedy, helpless Saru will be blamed and called as a murderer by her mother for whom Saru is already a burden.

Saritha gets used to the atmosphere of unloving and uncaring parents. She moulds her future all by herself and joins a Medical college, gets married to a literary fanatic- Manohar in spite of much opposition from her mother. After nearly 10 years, one fine day in her clinic, a relative of hers breaks the news that Saru’s mother passed away a month ago. She gets shattered to hear it and decides to confront her father after a long time. The run – away daughter from home did not have the chance to meet her mother even when her mother was dying. Saru’s personal life with Manohar was also not good though it looks complete from outside. She lives a very bland life and always toils herself so much for the family of 2 children and for a husband who earns much less than her.

Manohar never cared to talk to Saritha about her mother or father or her late brother or about that tragedy. The night when Dhruva left this world haunted her dreams day and night even after 10 years. Though theirs was a love marriage, Manu and Saru lead a life which is full of adjustments done from Saru’s end. Manu never ever thought of upbringing his career and remained as a literary professor. He was enjoying all the comforts given by Saru who never missed to attend her patients in the morning and attend him at night. The care, love and affection which he showed towards Saru when he was courting her – all slowly faded out completely after 10 years to such an extent that he did not know where he is wrong and what is his mistake. An irresponsible and a total fool he has turned out.

Saru’s world remained dark and she had none to pour out and complain to. Even when she tried to explain her difficulties to Manohar – he did not consider them as great things and silently forgotten them. All of a sudden, one day Saru packs her bags, leaves her kids and reaches her father’s home. The author has put this scene in the first page of the novel and shows Saru as a hesitant lady to open up discussions about her mom or her husband. Neither did her mom forgive her nor did she give a chance to her to explain what happened on that stormy night of Dhruva’s death.

After so much hesitation, Saru confronts her father one day asking him so many questions – “Why does mother always think me as the one who killed Dhruva? Why didn’t she wish to see me at her last days? Why didn’t she love me as she loved Dhruva? Why should I live with the guilt of unsatisfying mom throughout my life? Why haven’t I given a chance to prove myself to her?” To all these questions, her father did not have answers. Later when her father receives a letter from Manu asking Saru to return back, he understands that her daughter is deep trouble. He helps her to talk about all agony Saru had kept within herself all these years. Saru blurts out the truth to her father that Manu behaves so violently with her in bed at night. Her father tries to console Saru and advices her not to be resilient but to face anything boldly.

The realization that Saru gets after nearly a fortnight stay in her father’s house is that it is her life that she is living and she has to live no matter how many hurdles come. She has to live for her own happiness by forgetting all about the past. “It is my life and I have rights to live in my own way”. She gets the courage to face the Dark, now that she knows that The Dark Holds No Terrors. The novel ends there and the author did not tell what Saru did after that. I somehow like this kind of ending where I can use my imagination for Saru’s life. Wish to read many more novels like this.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Day 6 - 7 Days of Positivity

It is now becoming a kind of regular habit to think of happy moments happened in a day, which is really helpful to forget the pain caused due to a muscle strain after a work out in Gym. The moments which are going to be cherished in this space for long time are here.

1. During my college days, apart from the friends around me always, I had a very special friend at my aunt’s home and she is my sister-in-law whom I call her Anni. After a long time we both had a nice 15 minute chat over the phone and I am happy for it.

2. I am really thankful to the Web and the Internet access available to me to which I seek help from for any small reliable information at any time.

3. I love to try new dishes in my kitchen and me and mom gets so enthusiastic in preparing it. I am happy that we could come up with a tasty and mouth-watering Vegetable Soup. It was raining outside and the hot soup satisfied the taste buds very well.

4. I am thankful that I am a member of British Library from where I could borrow a wide genre of books. I have completed my last novel – The Dark holds no terrors and now reading Case Histories by Kate Atkinson.

5. I am thankful to my gym instructor who helped me to become a little more flexible than yesterday. The exercises were good to do but the after effects were too painful though.

Monday, August 2, 2010

7 days of Positivity - Day 5

Thankfully it was a weekend and I felt nice moments to write down here for the 5th consecutive day. Here they are;

1. My sister asked me and my mom to shop for her friend’s engagement. I was happy to find a lovely cream white cum Blue sari for her and a salwar material. Really happy to shop for someone else rather than for myself. A different experience altogether.

2. Every weekend – both Saturday and Sunday I have my dance classes during which I had to wear a cotton sari for the practice sessions. I had only one which I used to wear every day but, now I am happy that I own one more of the same type, a pink color one which suited me well.

3. The novel – Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton was too exciting that I finished reading it @ my workplace. To my surprise, the next novel – “The Dark Holds No Terror” by Shashi Deshpande is also good to read and I am happy for it.

4. I am really happy that finally my butterfly puzzle has got its shape and it looks like it is going to fly at any time. It is so realistic and looks colorful and fantastic. The moment when I placed the final piece on the board to give its final look, we clapped with excitement. Thanks to mom also who helped in the course of finishing it. The credit goes to her too.

5. My to-be soon bro-in-law was too kind in treating us in a new restaurant on Saturday. The food was pretty decent enough for a first time taster there and I am really thankful to him.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Day 4 of Positivity

Writing down good moments continuously for the 4th day is getting tough, but I had somehow managed to come up with the following list of 5.

1. We have a gym at our office premises and special timings have been reserved for ladies from 3 to 5. I knock the gym down quite regularly but with frequent misses. I am thankful to my concern to give me an opportunity to take care of my fitness too. Working out in the gym really enhances my senses and make me feel good for the day.

2. The monsoon shower in Hyderabad is making the climate so chill and I had a chance to enjoy it without an umbrella in the morning hours of the day. Me thankful to the nature for it.

3. I am grateful that I get to eat sumptuous and tasty dinner every day prepared readily by my mom when I reach home. Yesterday’s dinner was little more special with the freshly prepared lime pickle.

4. I am thankful to my shopping sense which made me buy a cute bracelet long back. I found it deep inside my box yesterday and wore it. Got the idea of buying a similar piece in Gold very soon.

5. Got my salary today and so happy to see my balance really high for the day and its Friday – Obviously a day to be happy to start my weekend. Happy weekend to all. Cheers.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Day 3 of Positivity

I am first of all grateful to write down 5 happy things for the 3rd in a row. Here is today’s list

1. I was happy to look at the first collage of photos which I made for my blog. I felt it really cute to put all the pictures into a single frame. Do let me know how the collage looks. The link is here.

2. After the summer, I alter my wardrobe shifting my daily wears from cotton to synthetic clothes. This monsoon, I had bought a brasso material and I was grateful to the tailor who had given it a decent shape with no alterations required further.

3. Anything newly learnt is exciting for me and in that list, it is the concept of Balance Transfer this time. A polite lady from SBI customer care together with my friend helped me understand it. Thanks to both of them.

4. I left from office a little early and had managed to get a long night sleep in this lovely weather. The sleep helped my senses to calm down and rejuvenate better after a bitter day.

5. I was happy to learn that I am entitled to a bonus component in my salary which I will get in a couple of days. Finally the happy news was revealed by my manager.

Wish to keep writing happy moments for 4 more days to come 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

7 Days of Positivity - Day 2

This theme of Positivity, I had found later that it had its origin from Preethi Shenoy’s blog. So I would like to thank her too for letting the bloggers enjoy writing about their happy moments. I am quite late in posting my happy moments and these account to the things happened a day before when I am writing them. Coming to the day 2, here are a few moments for which I felt happy and thankful to people who made them happen

1.Every one who returns from onsite in my team gets a bag full of chocolates and yesterday was a day when we all had a feast of nearly 8 varieties of Danish chocolates. I was happy that I could grab as many as I could before the pack goes empty.

2.After the three books, which I had borrowed from the library, I am thankful to find an old book, The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton and to read his fiction set up in 19th century.

3.Got a chance to meet up a friend of mine who got married recently and felt happy for her and congratulated her for a new phase of life. An another college friend of mine gave me a surprise call at the end of a bitter day at office to share me her marriage news over the phone and personally invited me. More wedding bells heard this season.

4.I am happy that my friends who had a trip to Lonavala last weekend returned safely and securely in midst of monsoon showers and wet weather. Thankful to my friend who took pains to buy me nearly 4 – 5 types of chikki. They were yummy.

5.I am indeed so happy to see my butterfly puzzle taking its shape and it is nearly 75% completed. The butterfly looks so real with its vivid colours and what fantastic shades of blue and green.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

7 days of Positivity ---- Day 1

I borrowed the theme of this post from Priya’s blog. The main idea is to jot down 5 things which made u feel happy/grateful every day starting from today for a week. If you don’t find such things, you can simply be grateful that u got 3 times food. Finding out the happy moments and treasuring them by blogging can give you nice feelings to last for long time. It is also said that optimistic way of life is good for long health. I believe that sharing happiness will definitely multiply it and return it back to you. By seeing someone happy, you also tend to forget your sadness and be happy, as the positivity is contagious. As I always write down in this space, I do want to remember only happy thoughts in future. This could be the perfect way to do it. I do not blog at night and hence I shall be putting down the things which made me happy the previous day and here comes today’s list.

1.I am happy that my dance class went fine yesterday and I have completed learning the first item in Bharatanatyam – Pushpanjali. I am yet to practice it some 100 times before I become extremely comfortable to perform it on a stage.

2.I happened to watch the movie – Inception in PVR yesterday afternoon and the movie was too good and a feast to my brain. Dream within a dream, so many levels/layers of dreams, extracting a thought from a dream, inception of an idea to another person via his dream – all that fiction made a complete movie and I felt so happy to watch it with my sister who joined me after a long time.

3.The monsoon showers which made its presence felt the whole day was more than enough to make me smile whenever I stepped out of house. My eyes were fortunate to get a drop of the rain into it. The moment when the rain drops fell in my eyes were just amazing to recollect.

4.I was happy for my sister as she was lucky to find a beautiful colored designer sari at Kalamandir. I had the chance to view and feel so many colours, fabrics, designs; --- wow I love the sari shops. Her wedding is nearing and we three(me, mom and sister) at home talked about her marriage day costumes and I was really really happy that I am the organizer for all such stuffs 

5.I wore a new t-shirt yesterday and I was happy that it suited me the whole evening for the shopping and I was happier that it was bought at a very reasonable price in the sale going on @Lifestyle.

Careers for a change

Of late, I have wondered what other careers amuses me and I have listed nearly 10 professions which I would like to pursue apart from being a Softie..

1. Doctor -- The field of Medicine has fascinated me the most right from childhood. Be it any specialist, I just honour them for saving life which is the most precious
entity in this universe.

2. Dance Teacher -- Dancing wow the rhythm and the music, coordination of the whole body and the gracefulness, the emotions shown without words. I shall definitely try to master one form of dance in my life and wish to teach kids and help them enjoy the elegance and happiness out of dancing.

3. Marriage/Party Organizer -- Organizing an event is not a piece of cake and not any less if it is a marriage, I am all set to enjoy cum plan it well and I would definitely like to take the whole burden from the bride and groom's family members and make it a memorable day for the couple.

4. Personal Assistant/Secretary to a business Magnet -- I am kind of excited about this profession, where the secretary is like the right hand cum left hand of a ever-busy business person. I shall be the inner - credit for his/her success and can boast of his/her achievements.

5. Glass cleaning in a multi storeyed building --- I would like to experience this work atleast once. The huge glass buidings and the long rope hanging from the terrace to which I shall cling to and clean square by square -- Can you imagine me like that? The thrill of the height and the difficulty involved in it is attracting me.

6. Librarian -- I would love to arrange the books and have a catalogue of them only in an airconditioned library :P. Also, I shall get to know a milllion author names
and have access to read them at my desk Arranging, Organizing are just good time pass careers for me.

7. Photographer - What more needed when the frozen memories of the minute are captured excellently in a camera and when the beauty of nature is explained without words. Mastering the skill of photography is yet another desired profession of mine.

8. News Reader - Every morning and evening I shall look spic and span and read out from the tele-prompter with my crystal clear voice the news happening around the world from the idiot box. This is another profession which I would like to lay my hands upon.

9. KinderGarten Teacher -- Kids -- their smile, their unanswerable questions, thier cryings, their pranks I love all these. I wish I have the patience of a KG teacher to open a PlaySchool.

10. Writer -- I want to keep writing blogs like this for years to come and be encouraged to do this. Apart from blogs, I haven't in my wildest dreams thought of
writing something fiction. But would like to test my imagination some day.

So do you have any such list of yours? If so I would definitely like to hear about them.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Ten to One --- Tag

No body tags me. :( and I am hence picking up the tag myself from blogs I read and the ones I find interesting. And I am passing it to all who reads this.

Ten how’s:

1. How did you get one of your scars? After a 5 minute search on my hands, feet and my face, I could spot a scar on my right thumb. The scar was created after some kind of plastic surgery performed to remove a small white foreign substance beneath my skin. The surgery was performed to avoid an evident scar but still a light scar stayed.
2. How did you celebrate your last birthday? I cut a cake @ my office, gave a b’day treat to my friends, got a gift and had a pleasant time having a nice dinner at a wonderful ambience on the shores of Hussain Sagar Lake.
3. How are you feeling at this moment? I am so much excited that I am doing a tag and I will be posting 3 posts today. Yes I love blogging and giving shape to my thoughts.
4. How did your night go last night? My last night started with a feeling that I had put up some extra weight. Then I was also happy for my to-be bride soon sister as she purchased 3 saris after nearly 3 hours of shopping. My night ended seeing the second half of the 3-idiots movie.
5. How did you do in high school? I was the topper in my school, in my town, in my district and stood 5th in my state. I am thrilled to remember those memories and really shocked today to know – “Was it me who did all that?”
6. How did you get the dress you’re wearing? I am right now wearing a parrot green colour chudithar which my aunt and mom shopped for me. They do a lot of shopping for me apart from what I do for myself.
7. How often do you see your best friend(s)? Hardly twice a year.  I wish I see them more often. But then I do keep in touch to forget the distance.
8. How much money did you spend last month? My Credit card statement shows exactly how much I spent and I did spend a lot more. I spent 30% of my salary apart from the regular household expense.
9. How old do you want to be when you get married? 27-29
10. How old will you be at your next birthday? The answer is within my blog and find it out for yourself.

Nine what’s:
1. Your mothers name? The name of a river in the land of Cholas.
2. What did you do last weekend? Danced, Watched a movie, Had a fight with sister, and Shopped with family.
3. What is the most important part of your life? My relationship with loved ones.
4. What would you rather be doing? Completely wrapped up in my bed either with a novel or sound sleeping in this lovely weather.
5. What did you last cry over? 48 hours before. When I realized I uttered some words which I should not have said at any cost even after being provoked so much. I cry a lot if I come to know I am wrong.
6. What always makes you feel better when you’re upset? Talking to my mom and my aunt. They make me feel really really better if I am upset.
7. What’s the most important thing you look for in a significant other? Must be active and intelligent.
8. What are you worried about? Nothing significant to list in this. I am glad for it. Touchwood.
9. What did you have for breakfast? Cornflakes & a glass of milk.

Eight you’s:
1. Have you ever liked someone who had a girlfriend/boyfriend? Yes.
2. Have you ever had your heartbroken? Yes.
3. Have you ever been out of the country? No.
4. Have you ever done something outrageously dumb? Dumb – Yes. Outrageously dumb – I could not think of any right now.
5. Have you ever been back stabbed by a friend? Yes.
6. Have you ever had sex on the beach? No!
7. Have you ever dated someone younger than you? No!
8. Have you ever read an entire book in one day? Yes quite a few Indian fictions when I had the time at a stretch to complete the book in a day. I wish I do get enough time like that more in future.

Seven who’s:

1. Who was the last person you saw? My friend Sidhu, sitting beside me at office.
2. Who was the last person you texted? Chaitanya, another friend of mine.
3. Who was the last person you hung out with? My mom, sister and her fiancée.
4. Who was the last person to call you? A close friend of mine.
5. Who did you last hug? I never hug anyone.
6. Who is the last person who texted you? Again Chaitanaya, to whom I replied.
7. Who was the last person you said “I love you” to? I haven’t said it since a very long long time.

Six where’s:
1. Where does your best friend(s) live? She lives in bangalore and He lives in Hyderabad.
2. Where did you last go? A sari shop.
3. Where did you last hang out? Movie in a multiplex.
4. Where do you go to school? Kumbakonam, Tamilnadu.
5. Where is your favorite place to be? Necklace Road & British Library.
6. Where did you sleep last night? On my bed in my room here @ my Hyderabad home.

Five do’s:
1. Do you think anyone likes you? Yes I do!
2. Do you ever wish you were someone else? Na… I am so happy that I am myself and grateful for who I am now.
3. Do you know the muffin man? No I dont. Going to google it now.
4. Does the future scare you? A little.
5. Do your parents know about your blog? Yes. My mom is a regular follower of my blog.

Four why’s:
1. Why are you best friends with your best friend? He and She accept me for what I am and never think twice to correct me if I am wrong. I have 2 best friends.
2. Why did you get into Blogging? I was feeling alone, I love reading, I love writing, I liked to know new people and make friends.
3. Why did your parents give you the name you have? My sister’s name is Vinupriya and my grandpa felt that my name also should rhyme with it and hence the name.
4. Why are you doing this survey? It’s quite a long time that I had come up with some posts in my blog.

Three if’s:

1. If you could have one super power what would it be? I would like to create a atchaya pathiram to serve the whole world – a mythological food bowl whose content never reduces at all how many ever times u try to empy it.
2. If you could go back in time and change one thing, would you? I would change my grand parents’ mindset to have allowed my mother to complete her graduation.
3. If you were stranded on a deserted island and could bring 1 thing, what would you bring? I would like to carry with me the Hope that I will be saved one day.

Two would-you-ever’s:
1. Would you ever get back together with any of your ex’s if they asked you? Hmmm yes, I have did that.
2. Would you ever shave your head to save someone you love? Yes if I have no other option left.

One last question:

1. Are you happy with your life right now? I am very much happy. No complaints. No regrets.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Peril @ End House

Nothing has enthralled me so much till now than finishing a Agatha Christie novel in less time. @ End House Monsieur Poirot, Christie's famous Belgian Detective widely remembered as a short guy with a sharp mustache accidentally gets involved in solving a murder mystery even after his retirement. I really felt so bad that I didn't read a book for the past one month or so, due to my sheer laziness and nothing else like priorities, reasons, work etc. Wanna direly get rid of that feeling, hence went to library and got 3 books as usual -- one is Agatha Christie, other is Indian Fiction and the third is a story in the English Land. Peril @ End House by Agatha is one of the stages where Poirot's intelligence is showcased. The plot was same, the characterization was same, the country atmosphere was same and with our same Poirot this time, a different puzzle to solve. In the course of the novel, all the characters are being suspected for the murder except a few who has clear alibis for them. In the end, the surprise was that to-be victim character herself was the assassin. Through Poirot, the author tells that any mystery is like a bundle of puzzle pieces and each has to be fitted in its right place to give us the final shape. Also, organizing the things, planning out properly, noting down the events happened, writing down the doubts as questions all help in solving the problem so easily. How simple it would be if Poirot's logic and wit is applied to all matters of life. Yet another time, it has been proved that Poirot's Grey cells can match none. Alas, my Grey cells could never succeed in hand before to guess the criminal. I have read so many Agatha Christie novels till date, but every time the excitement has never been less than before. The thrill and the eagerness to know who killed whom and the motive behind it and gathering the proofs to prove the murderer guilty--- all help in spending my nights so well that I tend to forget the time more often :) I am looking forward to read such exciting books.