Thursday, December 18, 2008

All for a few pennies more...

Watched Slumdog millionaire yesterday - and loved the movie. As always though the picturisation of India is on the darker side,unfortunately its so true.How the poor boy relates to the questions asked and answers are superb.

The whole movie also triggered a couple more thoughts about all the things that people resort to for a few pennies more...

Times when I want to pay-
To the old man who waits and tries to 'help' you park the car in place at a parking lot where there is no parking meter. Just looking at him struggling to blow the whistle makes me take out money to pay him.

To the young kids, or mothers with young crying babies who come begging at signals - hubby says that they might even pinch/hit the babies so they cry-but I cant believe it! Which mother would want to do that?!

Times when I dont want to pay-
To the men who walk around carrying pictures of various Gods and asking for 'dakshina'-which is nothing short of begging.

To healthy kids/men/ladies (off late Eunuchs) who are just standing at the signals and are a real pain when they keep tapping on the car window, begging.

But on a cold winter night like these, when I am all warm and cosy and I know I always have another sweater/shawl extra,which is lying around unused, I feel blessed and thank God for providing me with means to a clean home/healthy food/warm clothing without too much of a struggle. At these times I really want to do something for all these people just to give them a better chance at life... But would they take it? Or are they happy doing what they are - finding the easiest way out...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

How does Ipod Shuffle - shuffle?

OK A very simple question to all the regualr Ipod users out there-I've been constantly listening to songs on my Ipod for the past 1 month and put it on shuffle mode.

Question is: How does Ipod Shuffle shuffle the songs? Say something like all songs are considered as records in a file - then it does some sort of a sort and search mechanism to play my next song? (Bubble Sort and Binary Search?) (Hehehe Show Off!)

And If I hit the back button-it does go back to the last song it played-not some random song from the playlist...

my collegue told something about a Randomisation Algorithm and my head just reeled with the Information on Wikipedia on the subject! And IF there is something like an algorithm being used-then how does it become 'Random'? There will be some sort of a sequence to it then??

Can someone explain this in a simple way??

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Do Men get conscious?

When they are alone in a lift full of ladies?

When they are seen at lunch with 3 ladies and only man?

When they are waiting for their wife outside the beauty parlour?

When they are waiting for the wife to complete her any 'personal' shopping at a big mall?Especially if there are older women also who keep looking in his direction every second...

hmmmm??? I got the thought when the other day, a smart guy entered the lift in the last minute-and he was the only one among 5 ladies... He just continued to talk on his mobile,albeit the voice level did go down...

And yes-I know that Hubby gets embarassed for the last point there *eeesh* and he generally asks me to call him once my shopping is done,while he is browsing through the men's clothes section...He absolutely refuses to wait for me anywhere near by either!

Derby In the Rain!


I was reading about Aishwarya Rai coming to Bangalore to the derby and the word 'Derby' and the recent rains here, made me realise that I hadn't written about our trip to Kentucky. Ah! All the things that can trigger a memory!

Hubby's cousin and family live in Lexington which is around 3.5hrs journey from Columbus.So, all his other cousins decided to visit us in Columbus and spend the weekend with us and visit the other cousin at Lexington too.

Let me call them Mr.Doctor,Mr and Mrs.IT ;-p (I wonder what they're gonna call me when they read this!). Mr.Doc landed in Columbus from Boston on a cold Thursday evening in April. I was as nervous as I could be since it was the first time all hubby's cousins were visiting AND, AND eating what I cooked!! THAT was my scare-I had to cook for 5 people and that too in-laws!
Then on Friday came Mr. and Mrs. IT when the House was full of smoke from frying chillies... So anyone can imagine the welcome I gave them!

Despite having to work Friday night,we managed to talk until 2am (except the Doc who had to drive to Lexington the next day) and then grabbed 4 hrs of sleep to start at 7am the next day to Lexington. It was a 4hr drive and we stopped at the Horse Farm.

I remember reading Black Beauty as a kid in school and had this imagination of a well built black horse... but nothing to beat the look of those well groomed Derby horses. They are so tall and so well maintained with Shiny hair.Oh my God!To just watch them-its beautiful! Unfortunately it was very very cold and raining-so all shows for the day were cancelled (bad luck for us :-( ) We still had fun looking around the horse sheds (for lack of a better name) and admiring their size and their mane,touched them,took loads of pictures and generally froze our noses out in that cold rain. We then started from there and reached Lexington by lunch time.

Had a yummy home cooked meal-something that I didnt have to prepare :-) and then went to watch the Derby-in the rain! the place was filled with the 'Bold and the Beautiful' people who were betting huge amounts on the horses. We watched a parade of all the horses that were participating in the race that evening and then the betting booths opened. Hubby's BIL suggested that we all bet some 5$ just for the fun of it-else it wouldnt be all that thrilling to watch the races. So, all the men went to bet while we stood wrapped up in coats over the chilly winds...

Its really an experience to watch all that energy and power-running right in front of you-I can imagine how exhilarating it will be for the rider-the wind blowing on his face and everything on the sidelines, just a passing blur...

Oh! And what was thrilling was we won!-we bet 5$ and won 36$ :-) for which we all bought cool drinks and pepsi. Since we had to head back to Columbus we went back home,had dinner and left by 8pm-knowing very well that by the time we would reach home it would be past midnight...with only Mr.Doc driving...

The next 2 days-sunday and monday went in a jiffy-we caught up on each others' lives,the cousins were just making fun of each other and regaling us with childhood stories, we tried a new Mexican restaurant on sunday and I attempted to cook palak paneer - though it was Mrs.IT who did most of the cooking :-p And then monday we made 2 trips to drop off the cousins, sadly by the time Mr.Doc left I was in tears-coz it was a very memorable weekend for me and having felt lonely with no one to call "My Own" I had enjoyed that bonding over the previous 4 days...

Its only when you dont have what you take for granted - do you realise the real worth of it....

Sunday, December 7, 2008

This Day...

Hubby,

This day,years ago you proposed to me. Its been 10 years now since I met you and we became friends.And somewhere down the line, the friendship grew to something more... We became a couple among the huge group of a dozen friends.Someone whom we could trust and depend on for the rest of our lives.

We went through a lot of phases together. Like you reminisced, we met when we were 19-went through the stage of completing education and doubts of what next, then came the question of entering the job market, and then telling parents and getting their acceptance-which thankfully wasn't as tough as we had thought! and now-after 10 years of knowing each other and 3.5yrs of marriage there are so many more things we are looking forward to...

All through these,there never was a doubt about 'US'. No matter how tough-I knew I could completely lean on you and you would take over.

So,let me just say-I feel things are just beginning for us-a new lease,dreams we had dreamt together are slowly taking concrete shape. And I'm looking forward to every moment to come. And a lot more dreams to dream together!

This is my gift to you, this December 7th. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY Sweetheart! I love you...

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Distrubing...

Its finally over! After 60+ hours of seige and hostage situations and terror, bombay has been finally declared clear of the terrorist attack. But as mentioned in Headlines Today - Mumbai Safe- FOR NOW! Enough has been written and said about the politicians taking advantage of the situation/pathetic state of the border security or the complete unpreparedness to face a hostage situation.

And nobody is sure that all the terrorists are dead -no one even knows how many are still setting up their bases in various locations - not just Mumbai-anywhere else in the country. Are we going to be 'prepared' for something like this when it happens again? Note that I am saying - 'when' not 'if'- sad but true. Who's to be blamed? and what will that resolve?

All those people who died-burnt and charred to death,shot,blown up by grenades-just because they happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time? its so depressing and yeah-terrorising-Is that what they wanted to achieve? And what are we going to do about it? Innumerable blasts have been taking place all over the country - insistently - and everytime it all just dies down after a few weeks at the most. Is this time going to be any different?

Im upset (glued to the TV for the past 2 days) and have been waking up with nightmares - what about all those people who are living through it? Who thankfully escaped the terror. And what/where next?

Coincidentally I watched 'The Mighty Heart' - movie about Daniel Pearl, yesterday and the whole thing only hit harder and my thoughts were-thank God, all my near and dear ones are safe - selfish I admit, but isnt it true for everyone? Left with anxiety and more questions - What will end all this?

Distrubing thoughts,randomly put...no wish to go back and edit...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Excerpt on Brida - Paulo Coelho


I just finished reading Brida - the latest Paulo Coelho's novel. Like all his other novels, this one's again on philosophy of life, in the background of 'magic'. He talks about 'The Dark Night' - which I understand as 'Fear of Unknown'. To take a new path, a new twist in life, plunge into the next day,next task without knowing the outcome - thats what the 'Dark Night' would be for a normal person. The faith that outcome is going to be good at the end of a hard/arduous task keeps the person going. Here are some more reviews:
http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Brida_-_Paulo_Coelho-144175-1.html
http://bookworldcentral.com/brida-paulo-coelho/

Some of the thoughts from the book:
I have spread my dreams under your feet
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams


I had read the second line somewhere,many years back and found out now, that its been written by W.B.Yeats, and the complete verse makes much more sense...

If I had read the book before completing the book tag,I would've probably included this as one of the quotes:

Once we've gotten over the initial fear,however,we gradually become accustomed to the only possible solution: To follow our dreams. Having the courage to take the steps we always wanted to take...

An interesting story in the book:

In Ancient Persia, when 2 people met to drink together,one of them was chosen to be the King of the night,usually the person who was paying. It was upto the King to set up the tone of conversation.If he poured more water than wine into the first glass to be drunk, that meant he wished to speak of serious things.If he poured equal quantities of both,they would speak of both serious and pleasant things. Finally,if he filled the glass with wine and added only a few drops of water, the night would be relaxing and enjoyable.


Finally-this is no thriller/action or romance and its pretty slow. So don't pick it up if its just for a relaxed read.

Quirky?! Me?

Well,I've been tagged again to list 6 eccentric characters of mine by Arch-fully I first thought- that's so easy! but then I couldn't think of any! That's when I realised - we look around,see people everyday and find quirks and unusual habits in them,but we never realise our own. So I've thought about this for a week and here it goes:

1. Counting Steps: If Im alone and walking up/down a flight of stairs-I count the number of stairs I take,unless Im on the phone/some bigger thought is nagging me. Weird na?

2. Head shaking: Probably not a habit but I shake my head and hands a lot while talking. The more excited I am,more the hand and head movements. Hubby has even experimented holding my head while I talk-I cant! My thought process halts if I cant shake my head! :-O

3. Extreme Clumsiness: I am extremely clumsy. I HAVE to hurt myself at least once a day. Hit my big fat toe to the dresser/table leg, cut my hand,stumble-something! Worst is dropping water from the tumbler with my hand while talking (ref. 2). So now I generally keep any such tumblers far far away from my moving hands when ever we go out to eat.

4. Ironed Clothes: I have to wear ironed clothes always-whats so quirky you ask? I don't like even the line of folding on ironed clothes. I iron them again-well not these days (no time! :-( ) but this obsession was at its peak during college-Mom used to get so frustrated that she would say - "If you could Iron your clothes AFTER you've put them on your body-you would do that too!" :-p oh! And on the topic of clothes-I need to decide what I will wear and think a LOT the night before-even for a normal work day-Is it going to rain? Am I going to feel hot/cold? Do I have any imp meetings that I need to be comfortable in my clothes? blah blah...

5. Stage Fright: YES! I have a bad bad case of stage fright. I cant talk in any formal gathering. A team meeting and I need to give updates-I better go prepared with my sheet of paper,or I will go completely blank and start to hyperventilate,feel hot,voice becomes squeaky-NO I AM NOT exaggerating. Its true. The same team at a dinner party-I can bring down the place talking. Same crowd-different situations :-( I just hope nobody at work notices it though! (Just last week,I was giving some updates and I forgot what a POC was,Just couldn't recollect. Thankfully I had a minute to think and get the right expansion for the same. *whew!* )

6. Prayers: Its an ingrained habit since I was a kid. I pray as soon as I get up, and I HAVE to get up on my right side, and pray before I sleep-no matter how tired I am. I realised its not a common habit for most-only after marriage! Until then I was under the impression that everyone does it...

Aha! These are 6 that I thought of myself. And here are some that others told me-That I worry a lot-a lot lot more than what 'normal' people do!?? And Hubby pointed out that I am obsessed with photographs. Any given day I can spend hours together looking at photos. And oh! that I am slowly getting addicted to blogging!And this one again by hubby (Who else *rolling my eyes*) -that I never get a single sneeze-my sneezes are always More than 3-4 at a time :-D - now howz that for a quirk? Beat that anyone? ;-)

Now here's passing the buck:

(My 3 regular readers)
Sanju
Santosh
Nikhil

(And my new follower - ah! Sounds divine! What an Ego booster! :-D)
Sea Shell

Monday, November 17, 2008

Shelfari - Help Help!!

Trying to add Shelfari - problem is - I've wanted to arrange the books as : Read-Favorites/Wish List and Reading - but everything is jumbled.

I picked up Brida and The Secret over the weekend and just started with Brida-which I want to put up as 'Reading' and The Secret as Next read,Nicholas Sparks new one-The Lucky One and Thousand Splending Suns and My sister's keeper on Wish list and then display them accordingly. How Do I Do It?

Someone tell me? Arch-fully? Sanju?

Dostana and some more - review


Watched it over this weekend - and its definitely worth seeing once -Oh! but if you are out looking for some serious (Gay) relationship advise or you like to watch 'thought provoking' films - this one's soo not for you! Leave your brains behind at home and go watch - Its so much fun.

I thoroughly ENJOYED the movie. I don't enjoy slap-stick comedy - the butt kicking,Ass kissing kind of jokes or in-your-face double meaning jokes - but this one doesn't have any such thing. The dialogues and (sometimes and deliberate)over-the-top 'gay' acting by AB Baby (Ofcourse! Now I know you'll all say im biased) is suuperb! So is John. Some dialogues are pun intended but they arent dirty, and instantly makes you laugh. I haven't laughed so much in any movie in a very very long time.

And for those who like Priyanka - I guess they ran short of budget while designing her clothes and ofcourse John!! OH MY GOD!!! I didn't know that heroes could carry off such teeny weeny clothes (ahem!). Oh! The only disappointment in the movie is Bomman Irani - He's wasted and I didnt see any point in porraying him in a Gay role too.

For an easy going,fun filled 3 hours - Go Watch it!

[PS: talking of some more movies -
Golmal Returns - DON'T WATCH! Even if someone offers to pay you for it! Its pathetic - I couldn't sit through 1/2 hour of the DVD that MIL had got.
Vantage Point - hubby's been wanting to watch it and put it on DVD yesterday night-I thought I would probably sleep as soon as the movie began (have done it plenty of times) but no, it kept up its grip and I got so involved in it that I couldn't sleep for almost an hour after it ended!Had to calm myself down and then sleep!Must watch thriller.
Devil Wears Prada - Had watched it on *Plus half and half but kept hearing about it that I got the VCD over this weekend. Meryl Streep - too good,watch if you like Chick Flicks
Mama Mia - Over the last weekend. Wow to Pierce Brosnan :-D And Amazing acting by Meryl Streep-even at this age she can jump up and run around-cool! But the movie is a musical and drags-very slow,need to have patience not to forward the songs
Quantum Of Solace - Disappointed since there wasn't much Gadgets in this one. Nothing much to look out for either.OK OK would be my take

Whew!Quite an impressive movie list over the last couple of weeks!-which does include Fashion too,by the way]

I saw the DVD of 'The Painted Veil' at the DVD shop yesterday and liked the synopsis given. Has anyone watched it? Reviews? Plan to get it over the next weekend.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

What they DONT teach at Harvard...

Being professionals and highly qualified there is a minimum level of good behaviour expected from us. But what to do when:

- People refuse to give seat to a pregnant woman/an injured person/an aged person?
- After a smoke, they bite the common glass they drink water in? *gross* and the glass smells of cigarette smoke.
- After eating at the cafeteria,they just walk out without even pushing their chairs back in place-infact its a nuisance when the aisles are small- cant they realise that the next person wont be able to move?!!
- Leave plastic wrappers and covers and empty drinks carton in the bus. Would they do the same thing to their own swanky cars??
- Play loud music on the Ipods/mp3 players in confined spaces-lifts,bus,even office space-are they deaf? Or are they showing off?
- Finally-Mr/Ms Loud Speaker - nobody in the bus would be interested/ would be able to help you with your family problems,monetary problems or for that matter the profile of the guy your friend is getting married to! Do you even realise that people are getting disturbed by your loud conversation? Or worse-they are listening to your every word and smirking!

If this sounds like a rant - IT IS! And seriously - HOW DO you make these people realise atleast even one of these?

Well,after all these negatives let me say there are people who open the doors for ladies and wait for the lady to enter the lift first,and more seriously help people in trouble - and it feels good when it happens to you...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Of New Movies and Old Music - Edited

Off late there have been many movies that are attracting a lot of attention. Promos of 'Rab Ne Banaadi jodi' and Ghajini being the latest. And we watched 'Fashion' last week. Got off early from work (which was the BEST part of the evening!;-p)for the 7pm show. I had watched Madhur bhandarkar's Page3 last and had liked it. So we went to watch 'Fashion' with some expectation.

Verdict? - It wasnt all that great.An easy half hour could've been edited out of the movie which might have made it more crisp, in my opinion. But we did like both Priyanka Chopra (Ofcourse she's hubby's fave-so no questions asked there!) she has done a good job and Kangana Ranaut too - she seems to be doing this drunk and depressed act one too many times-isnt it? and become a pro at it! Its time she does something else.

Now for the discussion on SRK in 'Rab ne banadi jodi' - the 3D picture at Forum reminded me of those Mithun chakraborti movies with those 16year old heroines - remember them? The Father-Daughter age pairing? Eeeesh! SRK CANNOT carry off those bespectacled look and the heroine IS too young for him! SRK or not-that picture put me off that movie - though I might retrace my words - coz its an Aditya Chopra film-which means mush mush and more mush.hmmmm Got some serious decision to make here - To Go OR Not To Go...

And for Ghajini-only one thing to say - AK looks toooo beefy and not great with all that body building for his height - anyone else thinks so too? I like him with his cute looks better :-) - the Pehela Nasha look... *sigh*.

The ONE movie I absolutely am waiting to watch is 'Dostana' - give me AB Baby anytime honey! anytime!!!! *grinnnnnn*.

And that was about movies - now for some music-been listening to this song on my Ipod (by the way, its my Bday gift from hubby :-D) and its stuck in my head at the moment... Here's the link - Tu Is Tarah Se. Lovely lyrics,good music... melodious.

Difference of opinion on any of these - anyone???

[PS: Can someone plzzz teach me how to embed the video in here? - am lost!]

[EDITED TO ADD

I was having similar discussion with the ladies in the family who are big AK/SRK fans and one of them commented that Abhishek Bachchan would also grow old and will have bags under his eyes. I agreed and here's my response (this conversation was through mails):

I have also been a huge fan of AK – I’ve already mentioned. And for SRK – I’ve always liked the romance he brings onscreen – especially with Kajol/Rani.

But, if you see how they both look now – they are public figures and they should know what suits them and what doesnt. They have a huge fan following as well. Which is why I said maybe Aamir could’ve tuned down his ‘beefy’ muscled look – and worked on what would look better on his build and SRK on drawing the line about acting with heroines years younger than his age – the poster at PVR reminded me of Amitabh bachchan/mithun chakraborty who in a desperate act to revive their ‘hero’ careers acted with girls half their age – remember? But now that they’ve accepted their age they are getting roles in which they are performing extremely well – Mithun in Guru? AB in the latest row of movies… I liked SRK in Chak De India, Aamir in Taare Zameen Par – they are 2 exceptionally good actors, though their acting ways/methods might be different. They need to realise now what the crowd expects out of them.

And then finally for AB Baby :-D – I agree he will also grow old someday, and I have no problems with it as long as he learns from other’s mistakes and takes up roles that will suit his age at that time. Like the Hollywood heroes who know how to act their age! For now – he’s great!]


Santosh!!! Thanks! Am trying to embed the video here:

Friday, October 31, 2008

Im Peter Pan-What are you????

Sitting at home, getting bored I came across this site which did these quizes, and I am Peter Pan...

Now, how about all of you doing it too? :-) Its fun!! Go on-Take a Break,smile!!!






You Scored as Peter Pan

Your alter ego is Peter Pan. You are a child at heart. Anything you believe is possible, and you never want to grow up.




Now, what are you waiting for?? :-) Its fun!! Go on-Take a Break,smile!!!

Nikhil
Sanju
Santosh (See I tagged you for an easy,fun one!)
Archana

Do it and Let me know...

Edited to add:! Oops! And here's the link :

http://quizfarm.com/quizzes/new/TheMilkMan007/which-disney-character-is-your-alter-ego/

(And when I searched for the link again-I took the test again and got a 'Sleeping Beauty!! :-O - now, any wonder why?? ;-p )

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Any Ideas?

I've been wanting to change my template and add a background picture to the title bar. But Im confused (as usual-I know,Sanju). Any suggestions my few readers - on what I can do to make this more colourful and bright and interesting? (Oh! U cant comment on the quality of my posts though! ;-p)

Go on, tell me tell me...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Deepawali habbada shubhashayagaLu...


Wish you all a very happy deepawali!

One festival I've always really enjoyed-for one because as kids too we didnt have to get up early and sit in front of the God for hours together of pooja and without being questioned, stay out of the house on the streets talking and burtsting crackers with neighbours.

Since marriage its only been more fun as all the cousins meet up to burst crackers atleast one 1 day of the 3 day festivities. Though today I am not so fond of the crackers and the pollution it causes I still do enjoy watching. The excitement it brings, the noise and the laughter when someone is bursting the crackers or when a rocket doesnt go up! Or there is a 'tuss' pataki! The joy in everyone's eyes when they see the colours in the night sky and the feeling of one-ness, 'belonging' that the elders in the family bring by getting the whole family under one roof, 1 festival in a year to wish for happiness and prosperity to everyone despite all odds...

Have a coloruful and bright Deepawali everyone!

All of you All...

I've been watching the Nach Baliye series since its first season and I always found this one flaw which off-late is being copied by all the 'celebrities' and on most shows-
Is it correct English to use "All of you all" ? whether its for 2 people or more - isnt that just wrong english? Or is it the latest 'Fashion Statement'? If so, for how long are they going to continue to say that?

Will someone realise it and correct them? Its beginning to get very irritating!

You know you've married the right man when...



*Mush Mush and more Mush!*

I keep cribbing about how un-romantic he is but over the past couple of days-when I've been my worst and sick,fussy,grumbly and moody - he's taken off just to be with me,give me some moral support I oh-so-much wanted (without realising I did)... And today that he's gone to work and Im still in bed-he makes sure he calls hourly despite his hectic schedule just to find out how Im feeling... I felt it apt to put these thoughts here, when it means so much to me-

You know you've married the right man when...
-He wakes up in the middle of the night to kill the irritating mosquitoes.
-He comes all the way to your distant office to pick you up after a long, hard day.
-He buys your fav chocolate when you sound low on the phone.
-He puts up with all your noisy/boisterous cousins becoz he knows they love you.
-He keeps quiet when you scold your dad in this breath and praise him in the next.
-He drops you and picks you up from the parlour sessions or office parties without a whimper.
-He points out your mistakes without raising his voice and makes complete sense.
-He lets you rave and rant for hours, knowing he can put an end to it with just 1 calm sentence!
-He lets you do non-stop talking and listens too! when his eyes are already dropping off to sleep...
-He understands when you r going through your mood swings and screaming for utterly no reason.
-Soothes you when you wake up with a nightmare and stays awake until you go back to sleep.

I now totally feel loved and wanted-even when im not the best. I dont know how better to express it than putting it up here...

Time to stop cribbing about being un-romantic - huh? ;-p

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fairness Fixation

A colleague just had a baby girl.While the discussion was going on about the baby someone said that the baby shouldn't be like the Dad in behaviour (the said Dad is notorious in teasing and pulling people's leg in general) and then someone commented that hope the baby is fair like the mother not dark like the father.


My mom's not fair. I've heard that when my parents got married there were comments about the girl not being fair and that you cant choose the colour of your son or your siblings -but you can choose the colour of the girl whom your son marries! And what if the baby born to them tomorrow gets the colour of the dark mother?

This was 30 years back-when the colour concept was restricted only to the female gender. And now its extended to men too!Haha! (being a feminist here)! Its not so male chauvinistic anymore! Why should only the boy expect the girl to be fair? In this generation of gender equality - a girl can expect her man to be fair too - right?! I was watching some Ad on TV which showed bleaching for men! Arent men supposed to be Tall/Dark and Handsome? Where did that description vanish? What happened to all the M&B heroes who are well tanned and muscled?

Isnt it so shallow, this very concept of judging a person by the colour at all in the first place? For women there are very obvious advertisements of the girl able to get a suitable spouse only after applying a fairness cream and achieving her dreams of being a model blah blah. What about all those sultry heroines who've made it big both in hollywood and bollywood? (For example) Were they told that they can never make it because of their colour? Were they told that they will be looked down upon just because they arent fair and beautiful? And remember that Ad sometime back about that guy who sneaks into the girls hostel for fairness cream?

Where is all this heading? When will this obsession end?Or will it ever???

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Its Puzzle Time!

Hubby's cousin has given us 2 jigsaw puzzles-one a 2D and one a 3D! which has been lying around for more than an year now. There was a talk in the office about how the couples spend time playing Monopoly and Cards and Carrom and I (as usual?) came home and cribbed to him that we dont do any such "together" things...

So, now out came the 2D jigsaw yesterday - A black and white picture of Mount Rushmore during construction!Its a 500+ piece puzzle,after completing must look something like this:


and Whew! It IS a tough one - to just get the corners right we spent an hour,staying up until 11 pm.

And the irony is: MIL in her cleaning spree today-put all the pieces back in its cover-including those that we had already fitted! :-( And now to begin again...

That reminds me of what I had written here about being lethargic - I've completed 2 of my glass paintings but have been putting away getting them framed. And after a lot of pestering I finally got a Quick Stitch kit too-a complicated Flamingo design. Now those birds are colourless-thanks to my laziness... Need to get back to it soon.

And oh! We did have a lot of fun yesterday getting the corners of the puzzle right-so need to push him into beginning from scratch again! *sigh*

Tagged! -My first one

Santosh has tagged me to: “Jot down 5 of your favorite quotes from the various books you’ve read. If you don’t have the books with you now, googling (Wikiquotes and the like) can be used to find them. Tag five people and acknowledge the person who tagged you.”

and Oh!My! God! I've been thinking and thinking about this for quite some time now. having read so many books over the years, i've always liked a scene,a paragraph or sometimes the complete book that i've read more than once - but quotes?? :-O This would be the toughest one... Here goes:

1. When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it. – Alchemist-Paulo Coelho

I first read this book in college and at that time when life was so indecisive and confusing this statement was often used by us friends to find some comfort for ourselves! And this is one statement thats been tried and tested and twisted in most
movies too!

2.You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view... until you climb into his skin and walk around in it. - Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

I actually read this book becoz Rahul Dravid had mentioned in some interview that he liked this book a lot! *grinn!* and I really liked the book...

3.If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place. – Nora Roberts

I dont remember the book, but I like this author :-) and i had written it down long ago-surprisingly I also found it in Wikiquotes.

4.But love clears the vision. You see better, sharper, because you feel more than you did before – Memory in Death – NR

Since I've been reading all her books for the past couple months-I cant think of any other quotes from novels right now!!

5. What are we, after all, without our memories … without our dreams? ~ The Wedding, Nicholas Sparks

This book was recomended by a friend and I liked the simple style of writing-nothing over the top. A good read.

Im not very happy with this list but I guess it will have to do for now. Am not finding so many of them in Wiki Quotes either! So, I guess I'll just make another list as and when I come across something I like-atleast next time I do a tag it'll come in handy! :-)

Oh! And I tag only 2 people who read (regularly, I think )my blog:

Sanju
Nikhil

Monday, September 29, 2008

Sept Travel Tales -III - SFO

Finally, its the end of the travel tales in the US with this one. Though we were in Columbus and ideally we were to fly back on the 23rd from Columbus-Chicago-Bombay-Blore I requested for a route change via SFO so we could visit my brother who had just gotten there and also meet my uncle who's settled there and taking care of bro.

It was I must say a blessing in disguise for us as we had a LOT of luggage and thankfully Singapore airlines gave us the option of more weight! :-) in comparison with the other flight we were supposed to take from Columbus. Also, we got an opportunity to stay in SFO for 3 days and see that place too!

Well, with bag and baggage we travelled to SFO via Denver - Our good bye to Columbus said and sad. We reached SFO only late saturday evening and uncle and bro had come to take us back home.So it was just good rice and rasam that night for dinner-prepared by someone else other than me!

Since bro was beginning college from monday we thought we (4 of us) could see around SFO on sunday and monday me and hubby would drive to Yosemite national park- around 4hrs from SFO. But as fate would have it-early sunday morning we got to know that my uncle's older brother had passed away and he had to rush back to India. So the entire sunday our mood was off and we were trying to find him earliest tickets back home and making coffee/tea for his friends-who were more at home there than us! So our plans were all changed and we rented a car at the airport that night when we went to drop my uncle to catch his flight to India.

So, the next day we just dropped Bro at Stanford and also grabbed that chance to look around the university campus.



This is one of my fav pics:



Not everyone gets to step into Stanford you see;-p.We spent that hour looking around and then picking him up went, had lunch and went to the SFO pier. We took a Golden Gate bridge





and alcatraz cruise in the middle of the afternoon,



saw the Pier aquarium,and then strolled around the Pier shops-which was a very lively experience.



I would love to do that again if I ever get a chance to visit SFO again. We then drove over the Golden Gate bridge for a view of SFO downtown-that was another fabulous view of the lights of downtown SFO on a full moon night.



Oh yeah!we also went in search of the Lombard street or Crooked Street which I ABSOLUTELY wanted to see and had to nag both bro and hubby to find it. It was definitely worth the search and both of them stopped grumbling and accepted that I was right - for once! *ah! What an achievement!*



On tuesday since Bro had full day college we dropped him at the univ and we decided to do some more site seeing. We went to the famed Baker's beach-which was just a small stretch of sand below the golden gate bridge and was a letdown. I mean-after being to Goa and seeing miles of sandy beaches, who would be satisfied with a small stretch of sand-right? Call it spoilt for choice if you want!



Then we went back to drive through Lombard/Crooked street again and then to the Ghirardelli Square for a bite of Ghirardelli chocolate *yummmmm* I still cant forget that taste! I've already written about it here.



By then it was already late afternoon and we had to pick up bro,finish the last minute packing, have dinner, give the house keys to uncle's friend,drop bro back at univ,return GPS and then head to the airport by 10pm.*whew*

Ok~ now begins the harrowing story. We finished dinner by 8.30, packed everything,locked up home and ready to start-hubby asks: Do you have the passports with you? The tickets are with me". I knew it was in my cabin bag and asked Bro to confirm once.He looked and didnt find it,then hubby looked and didnt find it. By then I had started to panic-I thought I might have left it out before packing so ran back in to check-not there. Came back-checked the other cabin bag-not there.Checked my purse-not there.By this time it was 9pm and all our BPs had risen due to panic and we were thinking that we would have to lodge a complaint and we would miss our flight back home-blah blah... Then for one last time I decided to check in the said cabin bag-and there it was-hidden at the bottom which both bro and hubby didnt bother to check properly!!! *Ah!HUGE relief* By the end of this episode it was 9.15 and we were behind schedule by a full half hour.Then we gave the keys to uncle's friend and went to the gas station-that was the next step-some problem there and it took 10mins more than necessary to fill the gas.Then dropped bro to the univ and went back to the only walmart to return the GPS-turned out that they close at 10pm and it was 10.02! So, we didnt know what to do! Went back to the univ-gave bro the GPS to return and went to the airport finally by 11pm, and our flight was at 12.30am-just an hour to go. We returned the car and with 4 huge suitcases,2 cabin bags,1 laptop bag and 1 purse! we went to catch the train to the terminal. Its said trouble ALWAYS comes in 3s-so here was the final one-The train came and guess what-the trolley wheel that had our suitcases got stuck between the train and the platform! Whowudathunk!!! Me inside with purse and 2 suitcases,hubby outside on the platform with the laptop bag and the trolley stuck in the middle, the doors about to close! Panic panic!I just dropped the purse down,grabbed the bottom of the trolley and pulled and simultaneously hubby pushed-and finally we were all in-in the nick of the time. Thank God! In all this milieu my purse tore :-O. We finally reached the terminal just about the check in closing time and didnt have to wait at all-just ran past everyone to board the flight!! *whew* One experience Im never going to forget...

After a lot of drama we finally left the US of A for good on the 25th September 2007!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Fag End of Youth?

Am I? In the next couple of days I'll be turning another year older and another year left to the big 3 'Oh'. And Im suddenly beginning to feel old! Nostalgic. Santosh left me a comment on my DJ night and college memories post and felt that I should've participated in that dance that night and I would've felt younger - but since I didnt - I did feel older! I just couldnt let go of my inhibitions and go out there to dance. I was rather thinking of having my dinner before my bus leaves at 9pm! There used to be a time when dance and participation in anything came before food...

Was watching all these Indian idols and Star VOI auditions. Then hubby says: "How many opportunities the 'youth' have these days",
Me " sorry? did you just say 'youth'?" He gives me that blank look."You said 'Youth' like we dont belong to youth? Hello? We still havent touched 30 yet!!" And then he realised what he had said - "Oh! Yeah! Dont you think you and me are too old for these things now? I guess we've reached the fag end of youth!"

That made me think think think - grown old? Naah! Even now give me an opportunity to let me hair down and shake a leg I will! I dont even have a single grey hair - yet *Grin* Still, when I see the current college crowd - their dressing sense, their confidence (they definitely have more than what we had in college), their opportunities for career - it need not necessarily be Medicine/Engg anymore...The parents are also more relaxed. Or even the varied party options they have! The exposure and access to a lot of things that we craved for or paid the measly pocket money for! (say the internet? I used to shell out precious 30-40Rs for every 1 hour!)

Oh! but I am looking forward to this last year when I can still say 'Im in my 20's!' :-) and also to the year Im expecting will bring in a lot of life style changes!

Wish me luck on 1st!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Sept Travel Tales -II - Chicago

We were left with last 2 weeks before we were to start back and most people told us that we have missed seeing Chicago which was just 5 hours drive away from Columbus.So we decided to finish that too over the last but one weekend so we still had 1 weekend to finish the shopping/packing. Also, it being the last trip for us we weren't very keen on company. We wanted to make this last trip ourselves - as a couple rather in a group.

We booked the tickets at Marriott for the weekend at the last minute and hubby picked me up directly from office at 4.30 in the evening.He had a late lunch and had even parceled a burrito Bowl for me from Chipotle (he's very thoughtful in all these matters-lucky me :-)). We ate on the way listening to all old hindi songs and latest kannada songs from borrowed CDs and just as we crossed the Ohio state border it started to pour cats and dogs. We realised that we were driving right into a storm and we didnt know if we should stop at the closest mall or keep driving. We could hardly see anything ahead and we didnt even have anyone else for company and were shit scared-not knowing what we were heading into and what needed to be done in case of any emergencies!

We stopped at some remote petrol pump for fueling and the people there were as wary of us as we were of them :-) Having lost time in the storm we reached the hotel nearly an hour later than we had thought. Since we had had those Burrito Bowls we were thankfully not hungry and went to bed without any dinner. Also, hubby wanted to watch some tennis/cricket match the next day early morning at 4.30!so an early night it was.

Saturday-We got ready, had the free breakfast at the hotel itself and by 9 we were at the Sears tower from where we had found out the hop-on hop-off tour would start. First stop was the millennium park where we spent nearly an hour clicking pictures.

The Cloud Gate


V2 at Cloud Gate - :-P

From there our next stop was the Museum where Vivekananda Statue is kept. We also saw the Art Museum there-having the opportunity to get a look at Picasso,



Renoir and Van Gogh and other famous artists.We even got to see some sculptures on the streets of Chicago by these same artists. Later in the Hot sun (we were told that Chicago would be cold and windy!) we walked to the Buckingham fountain



and from there to the Museum Campus with the Shedd Aquarium and Museum of natural History.
A View of Chicago Skyline from the Museum Campus -


We even had a pizza lunch there looking at the mammoths and the
Dinosaurs.


And then took a speed boat ride (I just LOVE the thrill of speed boat rides) to Navy Pier -


from where we had booked the Architectural Cruise of Chicago on the Chicago River (more the back waters of lake Michigan).That one hour tour was one of the best tours we've ever taken. Though it was a lot of architectural history it gives a completely different perspective of the buildings and constructions. The Chicago fire and the after effects it had on the buildings.



(having trouble choosing the pics! so here's one more of the Chicago City view from the Chicago River)


Sears Tower view from the water.



It was 5pm by the time the tour was over and we then headed to the Navy Pier. Took a long walk over the pier and then ran around to find the last tour bus to get us back to the Sears Tower for the evening view of Chicago from the top of Sears Tower.



Another view of Chicago from top of Sears Towers (Notice the water flowing inside the city) -



We stayed on top until about 7 pm but there was still a lot of light.We were so tired by then that we decided to head for an early dinner at the Devon Street which is the Indian street in Chicago.Friends also wanted me to carry paan back for them :-) So off we went to Devon Street. Had dinner at Arya Bhavan (like in NY we didn't get where Udupi Krishna Bhavan was :-( ) which was just about decent,ran around in search of paan and finally found it in a Pakistaani shop! then it was back to Hotel.

Sunday - was the drive back home. Before that we went to the Aurora Ventakeshwara Temple



in Chicago and then started the drive back. The drive back home was very smooth compared to the onward journey and we reached by 5pm and were instantly called to have dinner by the ever helping,completely wonderful neighbours - KK/keerthi :-) So it was a great end to a wonderful trip.

Finally, after seeing both New York and Chicago back to back I have to say that we liked Chicago better much much better than New York - the crowd,architecture,or maybe just those bits of water and greenery amidst all those concrete buildings...

DJ Night and College memories

For the past week we've been having some competitions and events as a part of some Mela at work and yesterday was the finale-with a DJ night. While sitting there and listening to the current hot item numbers and the younger (yep!I did feel older just sitting there!) crowd was going crazy, I was reminiscing those good old college days when we danced madly at all college day functions :-)

Those 3 years of degree,every college day we were a gang of 7 girls who didnt participate and go on stage. Why? So we could stand at the end of the crowd and dance to all the 'In' songs that the people danced to on stage! No one to notice us-we used to be secure in our own world and dance like there was no tomorrow. I remember the final year when Kaho Na Pyar Hai was released and Hrithik's Ek pal ka jeena was the super hit song. I dont remember watching it being performed on stage - we girls were at it ourselves :-D And we had no clue that another classmate and got his Handy Cam and was recording all of it!! Later when we sat and watched it,we were amazed that we werent actually bad *grin*. And during our send-off party we even organised an antakshari which was a hit.But now I flunked the written test for preliminary round of Antakshari!

How times change... And why I didnt dance yesterday? I was having dinner and was thinking of dancing after that but it started to rain and the whole thing had to be stopped :-( I wonder how long its going to be before I get to shake a leg again. *sigh*.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Yo! My Bro is coming!



And I never thought I would look forward to it so much! I last met him in SFO last september just before we came back-we took the long route JUST so that we could meet him and assure Mom back home that he's safe and settled at his Univ there.

And ever since he left home for hostel life in IIT, we've not had that kind of an interaction which most siblings do-living together. Today I realise that we are such opposites:

-In the looks Dept - Most people cant say we are siblings.We have no resemblance what so ever...
-He's a nerd/geek and whatnot and I am plain dumb.
-His thinking is all in global economics/politics and generally large scale and mine (as is obvious) is more mundane day-to-day stuff.
-He's a total introvert and has very few friends-everyone else is just an 'acquaintance' to him and I make friends out of total strangers in hours.
-He thinks,listens,thinks,listens - I seldom think and always blabber!
- He waits and watches; - Im impulsive and plunge headlong into things - which is also an advantage for him being the younger one I must say-he's learnt from my mistakes! (well! I DO have some uses!)
- He used to crib about my obsession with Hindi music- Today he mails me amazing Hindi/even Kannada! songs...
- Age - Im older; Profound thoughts - He's my Grand Dad!
- Mom and Dad know he blogs - me,Im anonymous :-) (And yeah. Am sure liking it)
- And finally - He's on my blogroll; Im NOT on his (No no! And I dont wanna be!)

And I realise I've missed him - Just so we can crack silly jokes on Mom and get a stomach ache laughing.

Waiting for you Brother!

Edited to add: Guess What! He just called to tell me he got a great great job offer! Wow! Telepathy or what?)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sept Travel Tales -I - New York Memories

Once we realised that we wouldnt be travelling back to India over the long weekend of September last year we decided that we didnt want to 'waste' that time in Columbus. When we asked the other Indians everyone suggested we go to New York - once you go back everyone's definitely going to ask you if you saw NY - they said.

Thankfully for us - we had another couple-DVYDPK who hadnt seen NY and they decided to accompany us along with another collegue R of mine. NY being a solid 9 hrs drive from Columbus we started on Friday afternoon - while everyone else started from home, I as usual couldnt take the day off and so had to be picked up from work at 12pm. 2 hrs into the journey we realised that we werent carrying any identifications (in our case passports) which was specified as necessary in all websites to be given entry into Empire state building or the 'Statue of Liberty'. We turned right back and went home - for 5 mins of picking up the passports - wasting all of nearly 4 hrs journey!

The drive to NY was very good. It was a full moon night and it was as if we were driving towards the moon at the horizon - beautiful...We reached exhausted at 10.30pm and hit the sack - 3 ladies on 1 bed-so close that we couldnt even turn! And to top it off - I believe I was even talking in my sleep disturbing the others!

We were on a very tight schedule as we had only 2 days to see NY and Atlantic city (Oh yeah! We always jam packed our trips!).Since staying in NY was expensive we were staying in NJ and we were told not to drive everywhere in NY-bad traffic snarls. So we drove till the Grand Central station and from there took the day pass. We started for Central Park and then promptly lost our way-took the wrong train which took us almost all the way to Queens! Thanks to the train maps that we had we found our way back to Central Park and then the Rockerfeller center.



Nothing much in Central Park though we were thinking of Kal Ho Na Ho :-) but were mighty impressed with the Swarowski hangings and the staking rink at the Rockerfeller Center. With DPK taking pictures continually, we spent quite some time there and then DVY said we HAD to visit the church of Saint Mary very close to the center.

Then it was time for the famous Madame Tussaud's where we spent nearly couple of hours taking pictures with all the wax models we fancied :-) Hubby and me also got a crystal embossing of ourselves there as a memorablia(only place I guess where we did something like that!) Then we had our appointment time at the Empire state builing and thanks to all the pre planning by DVY we had passes we had booked online and we could go all the way to the top of the Empire state building without standing for hours in the holiday queue (Moral of the story-it pays to pre plan-always). There again was loads of photo shoot of NY city from every angle.

Oh yeah! We also got a glimpse of the 'Statue of Liberty' from there and were disappointed... With all the hype surrounding it, we were under the impression that it would be huge and we wouldnt be able to miss it but in reality it looked so tiny from on top of the empire state building - that we almost lost heart to go there the next day. Let me also add here that the next day when we did go, wasnt that great as well. The boat ride was fun but the lifts werent working and we had to climb nearly 500steps (I think DVY counted them too!) to get to the pedestal for another view of NY city and Manhattan.



And the Lady herself looked worn-out with the paint pealing off.



OK, back to empire state building and then from there on the night city tour of NY. The view from across the Brooklyn Bridge is really amazing-with all those lights in Manhattan across the water...



Once back on Times Square with the place crowded with people - a True 'Melting Pot of cultures' we got the train back to the hotel to collapse for the day. And through the day I just dont remember eating anything - except the big Juice at Jamba Juice I think...

Day 2: As I've already said we had booked tickets for the 'Statue of Liberty' for sunday and so morning was spent in that.Then to Ground Zero for 1/2 hr and then we all wanted a taste of Bisi Bele Baath at Saravana Bhavan - true desis that we are. And we walked and walked and walked to find this place and when we did finally find it - It was crowded with people standing outside in a Queue! Deciding that we didnt have that much of time to afford as we had to start for Atlantic City and since we were all starving with all teh climbing and walking at the statue we entered the nearest relatively empty restaurant - I guess it was 'Banana Leaf' and had lunch there.

Once done we went back to the Grand Central to start our drive to Atlantic City via NJ where we HAD to meet hubby's aunt and family. Another hour spent with them and we reached Atlantic city at 8pm. Deciding to eat on the Wharf and do some gambling we hardly spent any time at the hotel and by 9pm we were on another Casino 'Strip'. With no decent place open for food - we had burgers at some joint there and then took a walk along the Boardwalk.What was really surprising was that there werent many people at all. The Baordwalk wore a deserted look on a sunday night at 10pm! We walked the entire boardwalk entering any casino we felt like,



gambled around 40$ and lost it all - lady luck refused to smile at us as she had at Vegas :-( By 2am we were all so tired from the drive and the walk the 2mile walk back to where we had parked the car seemed impossible. So we took the man-pulled ride back (I really dont know what else its called). But by the time we got back to the hotel we were all again wider awake and though R went to sleep the 4 of us played cards until 5am and then went to sleep!

Woke up at 9.30, dressed hurriedly , checked-out and then went in search of an Indian restaurant for lunch as we had a long long journey back to Columbus. To cut the long story short (Its long enough now!) we reached back home at 11pm and just fell into slumber. The thought of going back to work the next day was sufficient for any remaining adrenaline levels to drop back to subzero :-).

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Musing: Education <-> Money?

Since school, We (my brother and me) have been brought up with the idea that only those who are well educated come up in life. And we truely believed it and always strived to be on the top (he always was,me - atleast 1 in top 5). Mom always showed the construction workers or the peanuts selling guy in front of the house to my brother who used to cry to go to school and would come up with the lamest excuse to miss school, telling him that he would also one day have to do manual labor if he doesnt study well. Everytime my brother saw a car on TV/a big house mom used to stress that we can get all that if we study well - then we will get good/well paying jobs and we can get all of what we want. She also always insisted that we should be kind to people/ not resort to bad things and be happy with what ever we earn with our hard work...

Today we've both grown up,well educated, me in a (supposedly)good job and him doing his MS in Stanford. We have our manners and behaviour in place, respect our elders we know we have to work hard to earn our daily bread and butter.

But off-late I've found a lot of people who are not at all educated, doing some business or the other and earning a hell of a lot more money than what both me and hubby together wont be able to make in our lifetime! And they have all that they want. I sometimes wonder what if our parents had taught us to do some business - maybe helped us to develop a keener business sense rather than pushing us to immerse ourselves in books/study harder/get those degrees - would we be better off? Earned more money? Would we have everything that we want without spending sleepless nights on working out the money matters? Would we be happy? Maybe yes!

On second thoughts - would I have a clear consience? Would I be satisfied? Wouldnt I want something else that I probably still cant get? WOuld I be able to return home after a really harrowing day at work and be happy that I accomplished something today? Would I enjoy all that I buy with that money? - I dont think so...

For now I wish, I would win a lottery ticket someday :-) That would be easy money - and not bad at all - isnt it? Hmmm...wishful thinking...

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Paintball

Monday last we had a project party/team building - whatever and we decided that rather than going to a boring resort where people just split into groups and laze around we decided to try out this new thing - Paintball!

We did the booking in the last minute on Friday and though there were some in the group who were apprehensive we decided to try it out. After loads of dilly/dallying we finally reached the place at 1pm! Since all of us were hungry we had lunch at the Confident Cascade resort close by (which was a part of the package, by the way) and then went to the 'Paintball Arena'.



The general rules were:
Split into 2 groups - I was made one team lead as me and another girl were making the most noise (Ha! Nothing new there, u say?). We were 18 so we split into teams of 9 - 1 red and one blue team.

Each of us are given 10 paintballs each and a helmet which we arent supposed to remove - eyes are the only place that can hurt if the ball hits/bursts. And colored vests to differentiate the teams(of course) and heavy GUNS!!! :-)

Game 1: Kill everyone in the opposition team - meaning if they have color on them - anywhere on their body then they are considered dead! So at the end any team which has even a single person not hit will be the winner.

Game 2: Kill everyone in the opposing team AND get the team flag from their base camp to ours.

Then, the game began - lots of shouting/strategy-ing/screaming/shooting/running around - wow wow! It was simply great! I 'killed' 3 people :-) and by the end had also wasted more than 50% of the paintbullets in wrong aims! I believe game 1 lasted all of 15mins which seemed forever for most of us!

And then Game 2: That too I killed 2 people but couldnt get to the flag myself - though someone else did- and we won that too!!! Both games we won - that too with me being the leader AND the BESTEST part I never got hit!! :-D So, that says something for my game plan - right??? :-) By the end of game 2 - which lasted some 1/2 hour we were all exhausted with the running around with those guns and helmets in the hot sun.

Despite the muscle cramps that lasted for 2-3 days - that was the only topic of conversation for the whole of last week. It gave us a chance at being kids again - playing 'war' with guns and paint pellets! And so many people to play with! ;-)

It was great fun. Much much better than going to any resort. And definitely worth a try.Next time you have a team outing - check this out:

http://www.yuyutsa.com/

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Ever seen that look...

On the face of a person getting off the bus after a long, hard day at work?

Noticed the smile when they see the spouse/friend waiting for them at the bus stop and how the face just lights-up pushing away all the fatigue and frustrations of work?

Or noticed how the eyes search for that 1 person who is supposed to be waiting and not yet there and the annoyance/irritation or even sadness close over the face when the eyes dont find that person?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Washington DC - The HOT HOT Trip

Wrote about Philly trip - So am just gonna continue here...

Since the unplanned trip was just not for us we decided to plan the Washington trip in advance before we decided to go...

Infact, we were unsure until the last minute that night whether we should go to New York or to Washington DC. We asked hubby's uncle and aunt and they told us that there is lesser to see and in a smaller area in DC than in NY that made us decide on DC. So we took out the laptop, marked the places we wanted to see, checked out the hop-on, hop-off locations and starting points and food areas - making sure that we dont end up fighting again!!

And we started at 8am the next day to DC. It being a monday morning there was a lot of traffic on the way, we later got to know that since DC and Philly are so close by most people having homes in Philly and working in DC come home for the weekend and go back on monday mornings - so as luck would have it we reached Washington at 11.30ish and as instructed parked the car at the Grand Central train station-

which was the starting point for the hop-on hop-off tours.

It was I guess one of the HOTTEST days in the year and the heat was killing us! To top it off the tour started bang at noon. Since we started later than we had thought - we just had to grin and bear it...

We started with the parliament building and then did the rounds of all the monuments in that block - Lincoln memorial/Jefferson memorial/Washington Monument/Vietnam Memorial/World War II Memorial.




The only Smithsonian that we were interested in seeing was the Aerospace museum we happily spent 2 hours there - away from the heat
and also had cheese pizza inside - just so we could avoid the search for lunch in that hot sun.

Post lunch we went to Ford's theater where Abraham Lincoln was shot.


There was a talk on the that episode where they showed us how it all happened. It was kind of exciting to be sitting at the same place and hearing about it - Hubby enjoyed it the best.

We also saw the famed cherry trees but we couldnt imagine the beauty of them in full bloom as the heat was too much for us to even think of cool spring then!

Last but not the least, we finally saw the White House,


which was a HUGE disappointment - though we were told that we would not be able to see anything -the place was so crowded and I believe there is another view point which was closed - so we only could see it from the fence.

So not much time spent there...

All in all we completed the tour of Washington DC in 5 hrs and back in Philly by dinner time.

And Oh yeah - I JUST have to say this - The people there were crazy. While hubby and me were sweating like pigs in that hot sun, drinking gallons of water and despite wearing caps were running for any shade or A/C bus when ever possible, we saw this guy - shirtless,short shorts,goggles Ipod and a water bottle stuck to the waist - guess what he was doing?!! He was jogging! :-O Seriously - why would anyone want to so desperately do any exercise? And that guy was stick thin!!!Now,What kind of a fetish is that?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Philadelphia - Completely unplanned trip...

Warning - Long long post

OK, this one was long long pending, so let me finish it off...

MILs sis lives in Philly and her daughter had her arengetaram while we were there. So, it became an obligation for us to attend it though - given a choice meaning if it were here we would've mostly just esacped while MIL and FIL attended it.

But we had no choice - so I took 2 days off after a big release and off we went. 7hours of drive all the way from Columbus and we made it just in time for the event. I had only met the aunt once during our wedding and none of the others so I was obviously very nervous and kind of prepared to be bored for the next couple of hours. BUT, we were very pleasantly surprised - we really enjoyed the program - it was simply awesome! I regretted the fact that I quit dancing years ago... hubby's cousin just rocked!

Since I had taken 2 days off-we had a couple of choices to decide what place we could see - we chose to see Philly on the sunday and for the first time we decided to take it as it comes and not plan. And it turned out ot be a BIG disaster! It was sweltering HOT and we didnt know where to begin from - We saw the liberty bell


and a couple of statues


the memorial hall,downtown Philly-


everything that was within about 4-5 blocks. And then we didnt know what to do and we were hungryyy. We roamed around 1/2 hour just to get an Indian retaurant - got a BAD one and had something to fill out stomach and also the GPS stopped working - It just got soo confused that it just couldnt give us the right directions!!! So we had to get out of downtown and then decided to see the Fairmount Park. Unfortunately for us there was some kind of a religious gathering of all natives at the park that day and we seemed to be the only ones who dared enough to enter the park. We got so scared seeing all those men that we didnt even bother getting out of the car - we just drove right out of the park and decided to go to the zoo...

And here is the worst part - we missed the turning for the zoo and went right into a completely native american locality. All huge/ hefty black men with ulging biceps and tattoos and body piercing in all odd places - all of them barbequeing outside on the streets... Unfortunately I had read in a newspaper a few days before that there was some communal violence and killings and protests amongst the blacks in downtown Philly, that I totally panicked and made hubby panic too. All those men turned to give our car a look and that pushed us more to get out of that place - I dont even know if we broke any one-way rules that day - but we just didnt care - we went right past all those alleyways and didnt have the guts to stop and ask of directions - we didnt even pull down the windows of the car!!

We finally got to experience what people always told us - about the native americans there - though they really didnt do anything - really might be very ncie/very helpful people - but they looked so huge and scary that no one wants to go to them for any help...

Since the day wasnt working out well - we even fought that we hadnt planned for the trip and wasted a day and tired - we decided to just head back home and plan to go to Washington the next day...

Moral of the story - We both cant go on a trip - unplanned...The first and the last was Philly.

Washington in the next post...

Bachna Ye Haseeno...


Really - Watch out! Ranbhir Kapoor Rocks!

Very trendy outfits, good locales and beautiful heroines, pretty decent music -
Bachna ye haseeno - title song at the beginning of the movie is a good foot tapping number and Khuda jaane is good too - I liked the remixed version better though...

All in all - a good time pass though not a 'must see'.

What was fun for me was the outing with all Hubby's cousins - 10 of us - that was the best part...

Go watch - If you have nothing better to do!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Niagara Trip

A couple of weeks back a cousin wrote to say how she surprised her hubby by booking a trip to niagara and I realised I hadnt written about it at all...

So, here goes...

Anup and Lakshmi had just then shifted to Cleaveland from Columbus and they were staying at this hotel which had a huge hall - big enough for all of us (6 people) to fit in. He had been telling us to stop over for the night and it was just around 3-3.5 hrs from there to Niagara.

So, it was decided that over 1 weekend we would go and spend the weekend with them and also see Niagara. While everyone else left on a friday evening (its just about 2 hrs from Columbus to Cleaveland), me and hubby decided to leave early on saturday morning - as usual I had a production release that friday night and HAD to go to work. Hubby picked me up from office at 5.30 am and drove to Cleavland while I slept in the car for 1.5 hrs.

We reached by 7.30 and by 8 we started to Niagara. Rekha and Bindu with KK and Keerthi and Anup and Lakshmi in our car. We reached there by 11.30 and since everyone was hungry had lunch at the punjabi restaurant there and started to walk.

Since it was the 2nd trip for Anup and Lakshmi they knew where to go and what to do -so we had no problems with getting the tickets and standing in line for 'Maid Of the Mist' with our blue coats on.
We had to cross a small bridge and go down to the water - and we could see the replica of Stratosphere on the Canada side of the water falls.

Maid Of the Mist was fun. The boat goes almost right to the center of the Horseshoe

and we couldnt even see the rocks behind the white wall of water. The boat was bobbing in all that waves, we took some pictures and then we were back.


Then we had to wait and wait for the 'Cave of Winds' at 3.30 - in yellow coats this time. The queue was looong and it was swletering hot. We all had some ice creams and watched the numerous Indian who had got their Parents/In-Laws to see Niagara. It looked like we were in some place in India! That was when we thought that IF we had come back without seeing Niagara - people back home would'nt have shown much interest in what else we DID see there!!!

OK - Back to Cave of Winds. Amazing!it was absolutely an experience! While most people didnt go too close to the water, we like small kids just went and stood below that water falls, it was so loud and so rough - but none of us could resist. While poor kid Sona was petrified (KK/Keerthi's 4 yr old daughter) we all carried/dragger her into the water too!! Screaming shouting we spent almost 45mins in that water and completely, dripping wet.


Thankfully Anup had told us to get another pair of clothing, which we changed into (thats one thing I really liked there- the rest rooms are so clean and big that we can change clothes there too!) and then we were told that we get very good chaats there. So, off we went - 8 Indians craving for some authentic Chaats! We found it, had masala puris and paani puris and went back to catch a place for the fire works and light show.

It all started at 7.30 pm ( I think) and went on till around 8.30 - 9 pm. The light drizzle did not dampen the spirits of hundreds of people sitting on the grass there waiting to watch the fire works.


By then we were all completely exhausted,Sona had gone to sleep and I was ready to drop off at any place I could sit! I hadnt slept the previous night as well thanks to my release at office. So we all carried Sona in turns and dragged our feet back to the punjabi restaurant for dinner. Most of us were too tired to eat anything and by 10pm we were back in the car and started back.

Thats about all I remember! The minute we started I was off to sleep. The next thing I remember is waking up in the morning on the floor next to hubby and hearing laughter and chatter aroung me. I was then told that we reached at 12am and that I had walked up myself and slept where ever I was at that moment- I dont remember a thing!!!

Well the next day we went to a temple and mall in Cleaveland, just roamed around/had fun/took pictures and were back by 7pm all set to go back to the dreaded work on monday and thinking... Another memorable weekend just flown by.