Monday, July 30, 2007

Life in a ...Metro

I saw the movie "Life in a ...Metro" on Saturday! So as you can see the attempts to watch one movie every weekend has been working good so far. Hehehehe...

I had actually gone to get JBJ but it was not available. The only ones that were available and interested me was this movie. And why did it interest me? Because I loved the songs of it :D
I don't know if I can I liked the movie or for that matter if this movie can be judged about being liked with respect to the storyline. But if you talk about the roles and acting of the various 'kirdars' (actors) it was good. I especially loved Konkona Sen and Irrfan Khan. They both were too good and only because of them the light humour in the film persisted. Otherwise it would have become a very heavy, serious kind of a movie.

The movie is about infidelity, and infidelity and some more infidelity. Some bit of relationships and some bit of romance dashed with bits of humour have been added to the main storyline.
All the small stories in the movie were intertwined quite nicely. But I really don't know what they showed about infidelity and how effortlessly people are doing it, is something which is real. Another fiction? Really don't know. So for me the movie was something to just watch and absorb.

What I did enjoy were the interactions between Konkona Sen and Irrfan Khan. The scene when Irrfan Khan is sitting on the ghodi(female horse) in the baraat on his marriage day, Konkona comes and says she loves him. And he reacts in a so nonchalant manner "itnee der se kyun bata rahi ho. Ab to blouse-petticoat bhi uske size ka sil gaya hai!"(Why are you telling me so late. Now even the blouse and petticoat have been stitched in her(referring to his would be bride) size!) was just too funny!

On the whole its a nice movie but one has to decide if one wants to watch a movie on this topic. If you want to, you will like it. Otherwise not.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Capturing on camera!

I love clicking. Something which anyone who knows me will vouch for. Be it festival celebrations at home, get-together, dinners, parties, travelling or just nothing. I just love to click.

There are times when I've thought of joining a professional photography course and learn the finer things for clicking great pictures. But I have no clue when will that happen. What I know is that it will happen for sure but when don't know. Maybe when I'm 40, maybe 50, maybe 80! :D

The other day when I was driving down the
DND flyway from work to home, I saw the sky full of clouds although scattered a bit. And I saw sun rays streaming down from between the clouds. It just looked soooooooo beautiful and how I wished I had camera to capture that! I'm sure you would have seen something like this many a times but did you feel like capturing it on camera? When I told this to DH and some other friends later they all said, "Its so common. Whats there to capture on camera about it?" But for me it was! So that's the difference between me and the others.

I see a crooked tree, with branches twisting in different directions and I exclaim "Wow! That's such a beautiful tree" and my friends would say "Huh?" and roll their eyes.

I like to capture people too but I guess my real desire is to capture nature, architecture or anything that amuses me.

I remember when I was working for a company who had made the website, which sadly no longer exists now. On the home page of the site, there was a section called "CPCam". Here we would post pictures that we would click personally everyday at Connaught Place (New Delhi) and post on the site with some interesting caption underneath.

The idea was to show the plush side of the Connaught Place, to entice and lure people to come and spend time at CP to do shopping, eating or just about anything. Well this is something which I realised much later as whenever I would be going out to click I would click the oddest of pictures and finally the CEO spoke to me in length saying that the pictures you click are good but maybe for a photography magazine and not for the site. I remember he pointed out a picture that I had clicked recently which had 2 street urchins relaxing and laughing under the large square pillar style hoardings. Then he pointed out another picture where I had captured an old frail guy with long overflowing beard walking with a huge ball shaped thing on his head and titled it as something like "Atlas carrying the earth?".

I tried for sometime to capture the so called 'plush' side of CP, and managed to click some good ones. The CEO really appreciated one picture which I had clicked from the 12th floor of a tall building just outside the outer circle of CP. It almost looked like an aerial view and it did look beautiful. But soon I got bored of it. How much can you click pictures of people carrying shopping bags, people licking away the ice creams, people walking holding hands in much? So I gave up the task. I felt I couldn't do it as my mind thought and looked at things very differently than what was expected.

Anyhow, those are the things from the past. Coming back to the current scenario, now I'm craving for a camera which can aide me in clicking some great pictures and stash away my 2 MP camera that I got 3 years ago. But it would be bad on my part not to praise it. I've clicked some really nice pictures from it too!. The only example lying on my office comp is this one below that I clicked during our trip to Andamans' in December 2005.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

How protective can one be?

While going to work, when I stop to swipe my entry card at the DND flyway to enter Noida, we usually get complimentary HT newspapers. And when I take it, as a habit I take a glance at the main headline before placing it on the side seat on which my lunch bag and my purse are happily sitting.

So today, when I saw the headline I got angry! Really angry and upset thinking where the world is coming too. The heading was "School staff abuse child for 3 months". It literally shook me up and made me think is my son really as safe as I think him to be?

I know lot of us have been contemplating about this topic and had their own views and apprehensions on it. However, I don't know why, I was a bit nonchalant about it. I used to think there's a limitation to which we can protect our children. And I still think so.

I had always believed in mothering and not smothering. I always believed in the idea that do not try to over protect a child. Let them venture out and face the issues. As there are certain things which are best learnt by your own experience. Me and my sisters have all been brought up with this fundamental and I very much go by it too! I've travelled alone in a bus at the age of 6 years. I was in class 1 then. And that too in a place like Ghaziabad where school was about 15 KMs from home.

I had always believed in the idea that we should do whatever we can which is in our control. Rest we should leave for destiny as whatever has to happen will happen. But every single day incidents like these, the one I just spoke about, shatter my belief bit by bit.

Why are humans becoming animals? Sometimes I feel I should not even compare them with animals. It will be degrading enough for animals too probably. What were those guys thinking, what was running in their minds when they were sodomising that 10 year young child? Don't they have their own kids? Have they ever imagined their kids being molested like that? What would they do? Probably they do so to their own children too!

And this is not only what appalled me. The worst was that the newspaper states that these people are back to their work as usual. They worked in the same school this child goes to and they used to torture the child in the school premises itself. I just shudder at the thought it it.

And not to leave out HT from it, what was the editor thinking putting a happy & smiling picture of Renuka Chowdhary along with her statement denouncing such acts? Isn't it common sense to put pictures that convey or relate to the content? If they didn't have a not so happy picture of Renuka Chowdhary, was it necessary to put a picture?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Yet another tag - Indian Authors that I've read!

This is one tag from Swati that I kept avoiding as much as I could. Avoiding? Why? Because it required me to put some effort on my brain! :P

Its true..I kept postponing it as it required really thinking but today I thought its been pushed aside way too long. Let me get done with it. So here are the Indian authors that I have read or read -
  1. Just Like That - I read it first few months ago and really liked it. I like her style of writing.
  2. Babies Anonymous - I like her matter-of-fact style of writing. Only thing I wish was that her blog had a more legible background color. The dark blue color makes it difficult to read for long.
  3. My Random Thoughts - She writes down to earth and straight from heart posts. Things that anyone can relate to. And I like her because she visits my blog quite often and gives her views too.
  4. Mama Says So - Her writings are not regular which I really wish were. But whatever we get to read from her is nice, heartfelt and quite interesting.
  5. Whats in my mind!!! - One of the person's who kind of was responsible (along with DH) for starting my own blog. She also doesn't write to much often but its what she genuinely feels about. So that's why I read her writings too.
  6. The Mad Momma - She writes really good and its very rare that I don't check on her blog to see if there's anything to read about. You don't go there one day and you have tons of posts to catch up on.
  7. Art Navy - Very creative and keeps you amused with her writings.
  8. Winkies Ways - Another creative writer who through her writings gives us ideas how to juggle two kids so well and how to keep them amused and busy too!
  9. Moppet Tales - Interesting tales to read from this author about Moppet. She can be so funny at times.
  10. Kodimeow Kronicles - She Writes about a boy called 'Kodi' who is all the time doing some mischief and keeping her on toes and giving her food for thought to write about :D

There are lot more Indian authors that I read but the list was getting too long so I stopped here :D And I decided not to tag anyone here as almost everyone I know on this blog world and wanted to tag are already tagged by someone else. But I will still see if any of the following people pick up the tag on from me - Tina Says, Minka and...I guess that's it :D

A request : Please don't kill me after reading my tag! I REALLY do not remember any names of any Indian author that I've read except for short stories in our school books and those names are long forgotten. My memory of books brings out the names of Sherlock Holmes, The Famous Five, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Mills & Boons, Agatha Christie and authors such as Sidney Sheldon, Ayn Rand, Jeffrey Archer, Robin Cook etc.!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Cheeni Kum

I saw 'Cheeni Kum' on saturday night. After having heard more of negative reviews than positive, still I wanted to see it. Why? I don't know. Probably because I love the title track of the movie. Yes it may sound as quite weird a reason but its true. There are many a times I watch movies because I really liked some sequence of a movie during trailers. For e.g even after hearing that 'Kisna' was a flop, I still wanted to watch it and did sit down to watch it because I loved the sequence where they show a girl dancing with light streaming from some opening in the wall. Well, they didn't show the girl as such but just her toes and her skirt twirling around. Its another story that I never could watch the movie for more than 20 mins. Yes it was that boring. :P

So, coming back to Cheeni Kum, my verdict is that 'I LOVED IT'. It was quite humorous with bits of romance dabbed in. Tabu looked as beautiful as ever and AB looked great too. I think he did justice to his role quite quite good. And 'Zohra Sehgal' carried out her role to the perfection as ever! She is simply marvellous. Although her role in the movie was quite limited but something that no one can miss out at all. She's one gem of an artist for sure.

I loved the nicknames Tabu and Ab had given to each other in the movie. Tabu would call AB as 'ghaas-phoos' because AB was a vegetarian in the movie and AB would call Tabu as 'Tangri kebab' because she loved chicken. That's how they had even stored each other's numbers in their cellphones. :D

And that reminds me of the drama that ensued in this real world about usage of nickname 'Sexy' in the movie. There's a little girl in the movie who is a neighbour of AB and he calls her 'Sexy'. He adores that little girl. So the drama was about the fact that he agrees to showing her 'A' movies because she's dying of blood cancer and its her wish to see them before she dies. So the hulla-gulla was about what kind of morals are we trying to pass on through this movie by accepting a child's wish to see 'A' movies. And somehow all the hulla-gulla kind of related the term 'A' movies to porn movies. I seriously couldn't perceive why did they relate to just those kinds? For a child of 6-7 yrs of age, even horror movies are 'A'. And for that matter any movie having lots of action or usage of bad words becomes an 'A' movie. Its quite funny to think of it that when you say 'A' movies, people typecast it to only one particular kinds.

Although the end of the movie was a bit stretched out when Paresh Rawal, Tabu's father in the movie, goes on hunger strike because Tabu, 34 yrs, wants to marry AB, 64yr old. For sometime in the beginning it seemed funny but then it got boring when the drama continued too long. But I guess in real world also marriage related emotional dramas are not short either :D

So to wrap it off, its a good movie to watch which me and DH thoroughly enjoyed. Now next on my list is to watch 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' despite hearing bad BAD reviews about it That's me which I'm sure you know by now :P :D

Friday, July 20, 2007

Being judgemental!

Having been tagged by ITW on things/people/traits that make me judgemental about them. Now that will really require some thinking. So here a I start with no clue how and where it will take me to :D
  1. I judge people with their voices on phone. Weird..right? Its a habit since god knows when. I try to imagine the person and the personality by talking to the person on phone. And the results have been 50-50 :P

  2. I judge people by their hand writings. Its a habit which I try to avoid but somehow end up doing it anyways. In college days I was enticed by this book into handwriting analysis which I chanced upon in our college library and I actually went out and bought it. I never read through it completely and its still lying around in the house easily accessible as I always think "Someday I will start reading it again!". Anyhow, so whatever I had read and understood, using that knowledge I try to analyse hand writings of people and judge them.

  3. I try to judge people basis their feet. Don't go :O. Hehehe.. Whether its men or women, and they needn't be pedicured or nail painted (for women). If they are not clean and look totally unkempt I get judgemental.
  4. I get negatively judgemental about people who want opinion of at least 10 other people before going forward to doing/buying/deciding something.
  5. I get judgemental about people who try to give me unsolicited advice as if they are pro at it and were born with the perfection.
  6. I get judgemental about people who love picking out the negatives in things/people. They feel very elated and proud about it.
  7. I get judgemental about those people who think the way they do is the only good way to do it. Nothing else is good enough.
  8. I get judgemental about people who delay the PAYMENTS they owe to me! :P
  9. I get judgemental about people who never ever praise me :P (its the truth)
  10. I get judgemental about myself when I see my house in a mess.

I guess these are the top 10 and the most important things which I can think as of now.

So now I pass the tags onto
Stone, Manasi, Swati to tell us what they get judgemental about.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

But he's a great guy too!

In one of my previous posts I ranted about what irritates me about DH. But that's just one side of the coin. If I look at the other side of the coin, there are tons of things which I can list out which I really love about him.
  1. He's completely taken over getting veggies and fruits. So the situation is such that I am totally unaware as how much what is costing these days.
  2. I never have to wake up early on weekends when my maid rings the bell at 6 in the morning! He always gets up and lets me sleep on! I just looooove him for that! :D
  3. I don't have to bother about getting my car serviced or anything that needs to be done about it! He takes care of it completely!
  4. He's always so supportive about my career and its growth. In fact sometimes I become a bit easy going on it and its him who tells me how good I am and how further I can go if I want to.
  5. He's the reason I started blogging. He used to tell me so often that I really write well whether its a simple personal mail or anything official. So with his frequent raves about my written communication skills, it made me think that probably I CAN write fine and that's how I started this blog.
  6. He LOVES my cooking. :D After every dinner party hosted in our house he will say "Nothing beats the kind and quality of food we have in our parties" And since 99% I cook at home I take it as a big big compliment :D
  7. Its because of him that I try out various styles of clothing. I used to shy away from wearing them but because he used to tell me that they will look good on me and I'll look just fab, that I tried them out and now when I look at myself I know that he was right :D
  8. I love that he loves golgappas too! I love them way too much and since we have this thing in common we eat them a lot and have identified one in certain areas all over South Delhi and stop by them all so often!
  9. I love those unexpected hugs and cuddles that I get from him.
  10. I love the secure feeling that I get when he's home and I know I can depend on him and that he will always be there.

So when I hate certain things about him I love lots of things too! And I guess I'm allowed that...right?

Picking up an old tag - 8 things about me!

I was new to this blogging game and I got tagged by Swati. I didn't know anything about tagging then and since I couldn't understand what it was all about until recently that I just left it at that.
But during recent conversation with her, she urged me to take it on now that I know what it is all about. So after thinking whether its too late to take it on again (its been about a month and a half since she tagged me) I finally decided "OK. Let me take it on!".

So here goes those 8 things (I wonder if I'll have 8 things to tell about myself) that lot of people will not know about me:

  1. I love to drive. Yes ever since I started driving again (after a 4 year gap when I got married and DH won't let me drive), I love it. Its like my freedom. I hated waiting for autowalahs and haggling with them. I love my ride to office and back home on Noida DND Flyway. I love the fact that I can drive at the speed of 70 KM/hr without a worry. Its another story that others are zipping past me at the speeds of 90+ but then they are driving in their Hondas and Fords and I'm in my Maruti 800
  2. I wish I could sing. I love music and I really wish I could sing well enough to sing in front of people and not be shy about it.
  3. I love to dance. Its another story that I don't know how to dance good and how I wish I could.
  4. I used to play tabla. Yes I sure did! I even did a stage performance in IIT Delhi long back. And I've one photograph also to prove that! :D
  5. I'm so very afraid of mouse and those big cockroaches. :P
  6. I cry during emotional/sentimental scenes in movies. Whether at home or a theatre! Yes! I cry during movies in public too! *blush*
  7. When alone, I pick my nose quite often! I can already hear "Eeeeeks", "Ughhhhhhhhhs" and "Grossssssssssssssssssss" :D
  8. I'm a gadget freak. If money allows (and hubby too) I would love to buy tons of gadgets. From Apple's iPhone, XBox, a fancy digital camera. Something like this or this or this. The list can go on and on but I guess I should stop here :D

*Phew* I finally made my list of 8 things! That deserves a pat on the back! I was really really sure I would not have 8 things that I can write here. 8 is quite a big number :P But I did it! Yay!

And now I tag Collection of Stars, Whats In A Name (My Random thoughts) and Asha. Hey I know I'm late but as they say "Better late than never!" :D

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Am I expecting too much?

Today when me and DH had a bit of a fight, he said a statement which has been bothering me since then. He said "I don't know what level of my helping in house chores will satisfy you! Nothing seems to be good enough to you." And I've been wondering if I've been unreasonable in my expectations from him. How much is enough?

During these pondering I also realised that I've become kind of irritated towards him. So to understand myself I thought let me just write it out and then maybe during this course I will realise where am I going wrong and maybe even what can I do to make things better. Some of the things that really irritate me are:
  1. He asks me if I'm giving betu his medicines regularly or not. It really irritates me. I feel he should know about it as such and instead of taking a status call from me he should probably say that "I'm going to give Betu his medicine and just to make sure you haven't given it already".
  2. He asks me "Laundry ka batch lagana hai?" And I get irritated and feel like telling him "Can't you see the huge pile of clothes? Don't you think it is required?"
  3. I don't like it when he points it out and says "Sab samaan faila hua hai. In sabko theek kar do." (Everything is scattered here and there. Just put them properly.) I usually ignore such statement but I'm fuming inside and thinking "If its bothering you so much why don't you do it yourself. Why is it that only I'm supposed to do it?"
  4. When I ask him to do something, he will always (mark that - 'ALWAYS' ) say "Thodi der mein karta hoon". The moment I hear those words I see red everywhere. Because his 'thodi der' is indefinite. You don't know when his 'thodi der' is gonna be over.
  5. I feed betu his dinner and DH eats his at the same time. Even when DH is done with his dinner he will never offer that I can have mine now and he will take over feeding betu. I never say anything to him but just fume inside.
  6. He never offered to bathe betu earlier. Its because I forcefully got him into the habit that he now bathes betu 99% of the times. I used to be angry about it that he never initiates taking over any responsibility. Why do I have to get him into doing it?
  7. He just refuses to brush Betu's teeth. He simply says "Main yeh nahi kar sakta! Mujhe nahi aata!" We have had fights over this so many times. I tell him that I was also not born with a child in my lap and know everything about how to make him do things. I've also learned it over the time. And if you don't get into it how will you learn. To which he simply says "Nahi, mujhe nahi seekhna! There are certain things which I do not want to do and you should just understand that." But sorry, I just fail to understand any logic behind it.
  8. When I changed my job, my office timings also changed and now I had to leave home by 8:15 AM. So this leaves me one hour lesser in the mornings. So when I would tell him that why can't you feed Betu his breakfast, he would get angry and say you make the dish and I will feed. And I was like what dish? He usually eats bread toast with butter in the mornings and he eats proper breakfast ast school with his friends. Do I need to even make the simple butter toast and give in your hands and then you will feed him? Sorry, but Betu can eat it on his own. He just needs someone to make it for him. Anyhow, after many rounds of discussions on this issue, he gives Betu his breakfast on the days when I don't but I can see he's not happy about it.
  9. He will never put the ironed clothes that Dhobi gives back properly. Either he will stuff them in his shelves and never hang them or they will keep lying around for days. The ones he stuffs them his clothes shelves will obviously get crumpled and then he won't wear them and put it in the stack of clothes that need to go to dhobi for ironing.
  10. I hate it when he leaves around his tea mug or food utensils here and there. I hate it when he leaves around his footwear all over the house. I hate it when he leaves his slippers in front of the bathroom as invariably I almost topple over them.

I can go on and on about what irritates me about him but its not going to make any difference to the current situation. Am I expecting too much? Is it wrong on my part to expect him to self initiate what he does in the house? Is it wrong on my part that I feel angry that he doesn't do anything until I tell him do to so explicitly? Why doesn't he feel from inside himself that something needs to be done and get at it?

I also work full time as he does. Then why is it that its just my responsibility to look after the house and the kid. If not totally, its majorly my responsibility. He just 'helps' me in them. Aren't these his responsibilities too? I've tried many a times just to ignore lot of things and live without any expectations from him. It works good till it lasts. And it doesn't last more than a few days end of which I'm back to square one.

I need to know if you feel I'm unjustified in getting irritated towards DH for any of the 10 points I've listed above. Is it too much I'm asking for? I thought this would be the best way to get unbiased views and opinions on me and my behaviour so that's why I'm here, talking about it openly and publicly.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Bong Connection

We got to go for the special screening of the movie "The Bong Connection" at PVR Saket. We were offered free passes from someone we know and we just couldn't resist the opportunity! :D

I think the movie is hilarious with bits of emotional stuff set in between. The movie was in Bangla with English subtitles. Although I hate movies with subtitles because if you do not understand the language your focus is left on reading the subtitles at the bottom and we hardly watch whats happening in the movie as such. But since I can understand quite a bit of Bangla having stayed in Calcutta for a year so it was fine with me.

All the characters/actors did a good job and I would recommend watching to all who are open to watching movies in regional languages.

During the intermission all the cast came on the stage and said somethings about the movie. Raima Sen was the worst among the lot. She really sounded like a dud!

The movie is about the main character's Andy and Apu having cross-cultural issues. One going ga-ga over US and one pointing out at the rich culture in India. Rest I guess you need to watch to enjoy it. It may not sound as interesting as it really is if I write more details because the topic is usual but the presentation was just GREAT!

So happy watching!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Punishing our children

I know we cannot define what is the degree or extent to which we can punish our children. When I'm using the word 'punish' I mean reprimanding and to some extent physical punishment too. I never thought I would be punishing my child physically i.e slapping either on cheeks or on any part of the body. I used to shudder when I used to see other parents hitting their children and used to think "How can they??!!" But now when I'm in their shoes, I know that its tough being a patient parent. Very very tough.

And am I glad I don't stay in a country like US or any other where you are scared lest anyone reports you to child abuse? You bet!

After becoming a parent I realised that there are times when the kids don't listen to our stern voices and do not understand that they are not supposed to do whatever they were doing. Sometimes physical intervention is required. Somehow hitting sounds too heavy a word so guess I'm not going to use it again.

I don't remember when I slapped Betu first. But what I do remember is that I had cried a lot holding him tight. But those are long forgotten days. Now he's started to be such a brat that a slap on his butts or back once a day is quite common. And if he doesn't listen to me even then, he gets a slap on his cheeks!

Earlier he used to cry whenever he used to get one from me. But now, he will hold his cheek or butt of wherever I slapped him and ask me "Aapne mujhe kyun maara?" First time he asked me this was when he was about 2 years of age. I was shocked ..really shocked when I heard him questioning the pitayee. However you may explain to him why he got the beating, he will look as if he understood and will give an expression as if saying "I'll not do it again" but soon the things start repeating. Same is the story with scoldings. He will very promptly ask "Aap mujhe kyun daant rahe ho?"

I have wondered a lot of times if I'm not as patient with him as I should be. And many a times I feel that its true. I need to learn to be more patient.

I feel we as adults should learn from our children to be so forgiving. Even after we have been cross with them, few minutes later they will come to us and cuddle! It is unconditional love that they have for us and us for them. But I guess its not easy to have unconditional feelings for everyone around us.

Anyways, not wanting to digress from the topic in hand, how good or how bad is doing pitayee to our children? Should we or should we not raise our hands on them? I've always wondered how the people in US, where raising a hand on your child can put you in jail, manage the tantrums of their children? How do they discipline them without reprimanding them physically? And do they actually succeed in that?

I've tried so many times by being stern and giving him "stand in the corner" punishments. He does feel bad about it then but soon it is forgotten. I wonder if I can console myself saying its a phase and they will soon learn the difference between what they are not supposed to do and what they can.

Second child - To have or not to have?

I've always wanted to have 2 children - one daughter and one son - and in the same order. Why the order? I don't know "why" myself but that's how I always wanted ever since I can remember. This was how I had pictured 'my complete family' which I'm sure is no different than most of us.

So when we decided to have our first child and conceived soon after, the mind was working on the same lines - its a girl. When any of the people we met would try to guess what the gender was using old wives tales as the base and if anyone would say they feel its a girl I would be ready to jump up and hug them! It seems quite silly when I think of it now but its really how my feelings were that time. Anyhow, we had our little baby boy on March 29, 2004 and half of my wish was done with! Now all was left was a little girl to complete the picture of 'my complete family'.

With the arrival of the new baby, all our time was spent taking care of him, playing with him and just doing everything for him. It was like he was the earth and we were the moon - with our lives revolving around him entirely. During those times the thought of having a second child took a backseat. Not intentionally but I guess with hands being full with the first one, there was no time for thinking about the second one. The time went by and our little son was not little anymore - he had turned 3 years of age. The age when I had thought of having the second one when I had pictured my complete family - much before we had our first one.

But now when I look at us, myself, DH and our little badmash (brat), I wonder "Where's the time for the second one?". With me working full time and Betu spending whole day in a playschool and a daycare till 6 PM, with us spending just about an hour with him in the morning which includes cuddling and getting him ready too and then about 3 hours in the evening. Ideally I should just count 3 hours in the evening that are truly spent with him. Coz its the evening when I play with him, cuddle with him, we sing together, we read books together and even watch cartoons together. And this is when I feel I would be doing injustice to my Lil' boy if even this time is divided with another baby - with him getting a lower portion of this time in the beginning till the baby grows up a bit.

There are days when he responds to our affection so much that I feel all my love is just for him. And I also wonder "Can I love my second child the same way as I did my first? Will I be able to do all those things that I did with my first one with the second child too?".

But there also are days when I see 2 kids in a family and I always yearn for a second one - my little girl. But then who knows if it will be a girl or a boy. Whenever I see two children in a family I start imagining my own 2 kids playing, fighting and doing things together. One complaining about the other, one smothering the other with kisses and hugs, one running after the another - just the picture of 'my complete family'.

My biological clock is ticking away too. I will turn 33 by the end of this year which doesn't leave me much time to decide on for the second one. I also so dread the times managing house, work and Betu with me preggo. I had quite a tough first pregnancy with all the general pregnancy symptoms/conditons working over time. But then lot of people say its much easier the second time since you know what to expect and manage accordingly. Some also say thats its easier the second time healthwise too. But we also know its not the same for everyone.

Sometimes I feel so content with just having Betu and feel "thats it!". However, my idea of having the second child was not for us but for Betu. I always thought that first child is for parents and second child is for the first child. We all know we will go away some day and then the first child should have someone to relate to, to talk to and do things together and feel all alone in the world. But then we can and will only wish that they will have good relations when they grow up too. Looking at the world now, it would not be practical to not fathom a situation otherwise. With the concept of nucler families so prevalent and everyone living so far away to follow their career paths even now, I cannot think how the future will be when our kids are in the age of 20s and 30s.

The relations such as "Mausi", "Taiji", "Chachi", "Bua" etc will all disappear if everyone decides to just have one kid each.

And its not just that, its the expenses of raising a child that come into the picture too. With us spending around 60K+ annually on Betu's play school and daycare, we only can wonder what the expenses will be when he starts going to formal school and then to college.

Even after thinking so much about the second child, I still yearn for one and think "Sab ho jayega" (we will manage just fine). But when will I have my second one, I don't know yet! That time will tell or maybe the prgnancy test? :D

Friday, July 6, 2007

What color are you?

Was asked by Swati to try out this quiz and here is what it says about me


You are driven and optimistic. You strive to succeed in life while lightening the mood of those around you. You do well at any job you put your mind to.

Find out your color at!

Your score was 142/180.
2,832,546 people have taken this quiz.
And 95,029 got Orange like you.

There are 2 things to which I totally agree with what it says about me - "optimistic" and the last line "You do well at any job you put your mind to." Mark the words in bold. That is THE key. Its so true, if I want to do something, I will do irrelevant of the fact whether how easy or how difficult the task in hand is. But isn't that with almost all of us?

But after reading this I was wondering why do they always talk about only good traits or behaviours of us. Why not the negative or not so good ones? I know most of us would chime "Who wants to hear the bad things" but lets be practical. Its good to hear the negatives once in a while too. Right??

Thursday, July 5, 2007

My maternal Grandparents

My maternal grandparents - Mummyji & Pitaji - as they were called by one and all. I would say I actually came to know them when I spent 2 years of my college staying with them. Otherwise it would be just a few hours visit and even if for a day or two, it was when we were too young. So not much memories from those days that I can write about. All I remembered from those days is that Mummiji-Pitaji were quite strict in nature and we used to be scared to do any badmashi's with them around :D

Hamare Pitaji
Pitaji - a self made man from any aspect that you can look at. His parents died when he was quite young..maybe 2-3 years old. Pitaji's Buaji (Father's sister) took care of him. He did his schooling and then when in college, he started taking tuition's. I remember how happy he was when I took admission in B.Com as he had also done B.Com.

He was a man of will. If it hadn't been for I can't imagine how he would have survived such hard times and come out with flying colors! I don't know lot of things when he was young but a few things I know can leave anyone awed. I remember him telling me when he was in college time and had gone to the river with his friends and because of the strong current of the river, was carried away such a far distance and how he was trying to remain conscious in the ice cold water and finally caught onto something and came out slowly. Then I remember my Ma telling me how he suffered a paralytic attack and doctors told them very bleak chances of him ever writing or talking again or even walking for that matter. But with his strong will power not only he started walking and talking and could even write with his right hand. His writing was a bit shaken but still so beautiful in that cursive form. None of us could write such beautiful cursive however hard we tried.

When I went to stay with them, it was year 1993. He was about 90yrs then. Quite an age but he used to do almost everything even then. His routine of getting up at 5 Am or so was fixed. Ever since I can remember he used to make his own tea and have it by himself as no one wanted to get up at those wee hours of the morning. So when his eyesight had started to trouble him a bit, we had fixed up the places in the kitchen next to the gas stove for the box of tea leaves. Sugar was not required since he was a diabetic and would use those sugar free tablets. But he used to love eating sweets and would look for ways and means to grab something sweet. So one day by mistake, when the servant left the lal mirchi ka dabba (box of red chilli powder) next to the gas stove, and Pitaji mistook it for tea leaves and put it in his tea. So as soon as he had one sip of it, he felt mirchi and shouted for me. I went and he said "Kuchh meetho de de. Isme bahut mirchi hai." I thinking he's just making bahana for wanting something sweet is saying so, scolded him saying "Koi metha nahi milega aur chai mein kab se mirchi hone lagi" But he kept insisting and when I didn't he said in angry tone "Theek hai nahi peeni mujhe yeh chai, le ja isko". It was then that I went into the kitchen that I saw heap of chiliy powder in the strainer that I realised he was telling the truth and how the chilli must be bothering him. I ran and gave him sweetened biscuits and he was almost in tears then because of all the chilli. I have never felt so bad at myself for not believing at what he was saying. Even now when I think of this incident I feel as bad as ever.

But I guess the way he used to make bahanas (excuses) for having anything sweet made me behave in that manner. I remember how he would start whistling as if he had something real spicy whenever he would want anything sweet. Once even after adding a packet of sugar free powder in curd, he started making that whistling sound. And when we told him that we know its plain curd and you have added sugar free in it so there's no way you could be feeling spicy in your mouth he says "Theek hai to aise hi kuchh meetha de do!" :D

He was just a small kid by heart! I remember when he turned 91 and we were celebrating his b'day he said "Ab main itna buddha ho gaya hoon, mera b'day kya mana rahe ho. I'm 91 yrs old!" And we used to tell him "Aap 91 yrs ke nahi 19 yrs ke ho!" And he had such a hearty laugh and said "Fir jab main 100 yrs ka hoyunga to tum mujhe 1 yr ka bologey?" and we all laughed and said "yes!".

He had worked with WHO for almost the entire service period except for a few years when he worked with Aligarh Muslim University as a Lecturer for Commerce batch. Being in WHO gave him tons of opportunities to travel all over the world. But somehow he never liked going out of India. He had such impeccable English that would put anyone to shame.

He was such a simpleton by nature despite having done so good for himself. He would be ready to help anyone whether monetarily or otherwise. He used to say, "If other's had not helped me I would not have been where I am after my parents died." And sometimes Mummiji would get angry at him since he would again help those people who took him for a ride earlier by taking money as loan which was never returned even after they were doing good. But that was Pitaji. He would still help these kind of people out without even doubting their words.

I remember once all of us cousins decided to go to Lodhi Garden for a kids picnic. It was a 10 mins walking distance from the house in Jorbagh. The eldest one amongst us was I think my sister who was about 13 yrs then and I was probably 11 yrs then. This is when we had come over to Mummiji-Pitaji over summer holidays. So our parents packed some food, sandwiches and other stuff and sent us on for the picnic for which we all cousins were really excited. It had not been even 10 mins since we had reached our destination that we saw our Bahadur bhaiyya running towards us saying we all need to get back to home as Pitaji is angry. And we were like "Oh goes our picnic!" But now when we think of the incident it just purely shows how concerned he was for us kids wandering into Lodhi gardens which is quite huge in size all by ourselves and no elder to accompany us.

These are some of the things that he was really fond:
  1. Bikaneri bhujia - the plain kinds and not the spicy ones.
  2. Zeera Biscuits
  3. Threptin Biscuits
  4. Who can forget his "Swad" golis! He was really really fond of them. But because of the meetha in them, we used to give him half at a time once a day. He used to hate us for all the rationing.
  5. Getting cream rubbed on his arms and legs. Trust me his skin was as soft as a new born baby even at the age of 90 yrs plus.
  6. Taking a walk everyday around the fountain in front of our house.
  7. Watching the news at 7:30 pm on doordarshan. Cable had just started in those days so there were no specialised news channels besides Doordarshan.

There's also one thing that I can never forgive myself for. Once I talked to him in a very rude manner. My college exams were on and he kept calling me every 15 mins to read out his bank passbook and explain it to him since he felt there was some problem in the pension that he had been given. Couple of times I went but then I got really irritated and I talked to him rudely and came back to my room (adjacent to his bedroom). A minute later I heard him talking to himself saying "Main to bas pension ke baare mein hi pooch raha tha, yeh mere se aise baat karti hai!" On hearing that I felt so so bad for talking to him like in that tone. So I went and apologised to him and he was happy the next minute just like a child. Just like a child who does not hold grudges against anyone for more than a few seconds. Someone who loves the other unconditionally.

Hamaree Mummiji
Mummiji was like devi "Annapoorna" in a certain way. Whenever we went, whether planned or unplanned, there always were yummy goodies to splurge on. Never ever I remember a situation otherwise. Her famous kothri (store) where she used to keep all the eatables in one corder and other household stuff such as detergents etc in the other. Small...dark..with only one small bulb in the middle with a low ceiling. The kothri always amsued all of us. It was like a magic box for us...full of surprises and never ending stuff in it.

Who can forget her famous mithai that she used to make out the crumbles that are left out when you extract ghee from the milk cream. It used to be simply delicious! How many times I tried to make something liek that but nopes, that taste and flavour doesn't come at all. Not even 10%.

From the stories that she used to tell us of her as a kid, she was quite a naughtly bubbly child. She told us once she got her really long hair chopped off because a friend of hers had gotten done so too. But since she was scared of
Ammaji, her mum, so she threw them in a dustbin few houses away from their house. Ammaji was out doing some grocery shopping and while returning she saw those long cut hair in the dustbin and thought who was that stupid person to cut such long, beautiful hair. Once Ammaji reached home and saw that it was her own daugther, she was devastated.

Mummiji also told about an incident when she must have been about 7-8 yrs of age which shows how innocent the kids are in those days. Those were the days just after world war when Ammaji and our parnana had lost all of thier wealth and possesions and were having a hard time. So after saving some money, Parnanaji got a new sweater for Ammaji as Ammaji's old sweater was almost in tatters. But obviously Ammaji was happy and she kept the sweater aside to wear it the next day. Next day, a beggar came asking for clothes when Ammaji was in her bath and Mummiji was playing ourside. So Mummiji came and asked Ammaji what to do. So Ammaji told Mummiji to give the sweater to that beggar. Perhaps she forgot to specify to give the old sweater. Like any other child enthused with new things, Mummiji promptly gave away the new sweater to that beggar.

When Ammaji came out and searched for her new sweater she couldn't find it and could only see the old sweater. Then it struck her what had happened. However, Mummiji told us that Ammaji never scolded her for it jsut because Mummiji had acted just like any other child would have. I was amazed then and am amzed even more now that I've a child myself. If Anirudh would have done something like this, hell would have broken loose at my home.

Mummiji was one of those women who if given a chance would have proved to be such successful in her career in whatever field she would have chosen. She was the one to get driver's license before Pitaji could. She was the one who would take care of the construction of their house when Pitaji would be at work. She sacrificed a lot during her lifetime. She used to buy white sarees and dye them at home just to save some money.

I remember my exam days when I would be studying in my room, she would come and place fruits next to us so that I don't need to get up for them. She was quite fond of eating different stuff and how we would both sit and share a plate of chowmein or golgappas or chhole-bhature. How we both used to just venture out to Yusuf Sarai for basic grocery shopping in an auto when all that stuff we could get at our local grocer too.

It was not a pure lovey dovey relationship that I shared with her. We had our share of fights too. But in the end, just snuggling my face in her lap felt so secure and comforting that no words can describe.


I recently heard about this energy saving method by Google called "Blackle". Well the concept, from what I understood, is that since the background is black on the pages, it used lesser energy as any given monitor requires more energy/power to display a white which is nothing but a light than a black or a dark screen.

When you think about it, it seems quite amusing and interesting and you say, if that can save energy why not give it a try? I tried but I didn't feel comfortable after a few minutes. Comfortable? About what? About no need to save energy or in the truthfulness of the whole concept?

Well, I don't know scientifically how right or wrong the whole idea is but for me as a general person it strained my eyes way too much! They started to hurt after a while. It requires too much concentration and focusing to read on a black background. I dunno if it does to you too!

And then I actually realised that whatever blog links I used to chance upon from the blog sites I frequented, I used to generally close them the moment I saw a black background in them.

On other thoughts, is this an optimal method of saving energy? Aren't there other better ways to do it? Some might say, there has to be a start somewhere and why not this. I do and will try to save energy in whatever other ways I can. But sorry guys,
"Blackle" is not for me! Definitely not!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

My Great Grandmothers (contd...)

Ammaji - My Maternal Grandmother
In my last post I talked about my paternal great grand mother. I've spent similar great times with my maternal great grandmother - 'parnani' as we call them in Hindi.

My first memories of Ammaji are from the year 1985. I must have met her before but somehow there are no memories of periods prior to 1985. I was almost 10 years then. She was of a nice cuddly plumpish built with silky White hair but with a few strands of gray in between. It was much later when her hair turned pure silky white. She must have been in late 70s or early 80s then.

She had such faith in children and in the words they would say. She used to say "Bachhe jo bolte hain, woh zaroor hota hai!" I remember whenever she would get cold or fever or anything related to her health, she would ask us "main jaldi theek ho jayungee na?" And we like good children would say "Yes!" and she would be very happy to hear that! She used to say that "Bhagwan bachhon ki baat sunte hain!" I guess at the age we were in, we used to feel more proud of the fact that our opinion was sought after! :D

Summer vacations were great fun for all of us cousins. We would spend few days at Nani-Nana's house and Ammaji used to stay with them itself. So in those summer vacations, after lunch time was eagerly awaited by all of us because that would mean "Hajmola time"! After all of us and Ammaji would have eaten lunch, we would all gather around her and her famous wooden almirah from which she would take out that hajmola bottle and give to us one by one. Sometimes we used to try and take advantage by trying to take twice but then she would remember even in the crowd of 10 of us cousins who has taken and who hasn't. So we could never get her to give Hajmola twice to any of us. :D

Ammaji had one of those watches which you wave in the air to charge the battery. We all would be so amused with it and whenever she needed to charge it we would ask her to let us do that, as for us it was kind of a game. Again it would be turn by turn for all the cousins who were present that time in the house. Twice in a day that watch needed to be charged and we all had turns chalked out for each of us :D

Playing cards with her was so much fun too as sometimes we were able to cheat without her getting to know it. And when she would get to know that we were cheating she would get angry just like us kids. And we would cuddle with her, apologise and and get her to play with us again :D I can still hear those words resonate in my mind when she would say "Tum cheating karte ho!" Our favourite card games with her were "Rummy" and "Coat Piece".

Combing her silky hair was always something that I loved and probably something she must be enjoying too. I still feel her hair were much softer than even silk! So nice, shiny and soft. And who can forget her Nycil powder. In summers, everyday at least once, sometimes twice, she would ask one of us to put that famous Nycil powder on her back.

There was a word that I learnt from her - "Husht!" (pronounce it as Hoo - sht). It surely sound funny when I write it but it used to amuse us quite a lot then. Whenever we would tease her or play with her and she would want us to go away she would say "Husht!" :D I liked it so much that I started to use it too.

She used to tell us about the stories from Rangoon which was part of India when they used to stay there. And how they had a flourishing gold shop but it all was ruined and ransacked and looted during the world war when they were travelling to Delhi. Whenever she would talk about those days, one could see how hurt she used to feel from inside thinking about the loss.

Every evening around 5:30 or 6:00 PM, she would go with any of us who was available at that time to take a round of the parks. The will to be active was quite strong even at the age she was. We at young ages sit with scooped up backs and she would always sit without support and with the back straight.

Whenever we would say "Ammaji, bore ho rahein hain!" She would say "Seedi par chado aur neeche koodo!" (Climb up the stairs and jump down) and we would tell her that you are making fun of us and she would say that she's simply giving us an idea to keep us busy :D

This was my "Ammaji" - our Ammaji whom we all will always cherish!