Friday, December 19, 2008

Finally...

This blog made it to the end of year 2008. This also implies that I made it to the end of 2008 which is exactly what I had in mind when I posted the first post this year. This has been an absolute cracker of all times. One of the richest in terms of experiences. Marked by happiness, routine, pain, drama, melodrama. I met more people in this one year than probably my entire lifetime. This has not been the best year, but this has definitely been one where I had some best learning. There was a desire to have one blog per month posted and I can now say that I could make it. However, I do not think that any of the last 12 posts made much sense except for this

Time for a quick recap! 

January – New Year 2008! Had some nice celebrations with Varsha and Ankita. I danced my way to glory much to the annoyance of neighbors and friends alike! Went to trek with Sandeep and saw some of the most beautiful shades of blue. Nice beginning. 

February – The month of love! Another lone Valentine’s Day. Also, realistically speaking, I doubt this situation is going to change in February 2009. But with love, as with life, you never know! 

March – Month of marriages! Highlight of the month was of course, Prateek’s wedding. We have so many fond memories from childhood that just the thought of Prateek getting married made me wonder how quickly time flies. It seems only yesterday when we were playing cricket at my grandmother’s place on a hot summer afternoon. And that same sweet brother embarks on a new journey. And then there was Anjali’s wedding. I was there for hardly a few hours but somewhere deep down within I realized that it was an emotional moment. Anjali has always been a person I respected a lot. Then, I met my college friends after a long time. And I can never forget how I felt when Deepshikha quickly packed my lunch (even the pan!) before I rushed to catch my train. Some friends are for life, even if you don’t meet them often, even if you don’t talk to them often.

April – Deepshikha’s marriage :-)! And some major upheavals in lives that crisscross mine. ‘Why, but why?’ was the question all over. And yes, no answers as expected!

May – Chicken Pox and IPL! I am still living with the marks of CP. The three days when I was alone surviving on Rooh-Afza, IPL and on-phone talks with Amit ji were the toughest 96 hours I endured, personally. For the first time I remember, my ego was beaten to death ;-)! It however, sprang back to life after I had sufficient doses of Nariyal Pani and curd rice! Team Chennai lost in the finals to underdogs Rajasthan Royals and I had a new respect for Mahi! 

June – The toughest month on the whole. This was a hectic, tiring, draining period. It was revealing and I lost more than what I had bargained for. It was life changing as well. I also boarded my first international flight. Saumya, Amruta bhabhi thanks for making it to the airport. I cannot tell you how grateful I am for being able to make it. “Sitting on the lounge, waiting for the flight, I realized that the things you want in life come to you at a cost. And sometimes, you are not willing to pay the price.” This realization still holds true.

July – Travel time! I found beautiful friends in Veethi and Vipul. I found a place to live in US. I visited San Antonio and Houston. I spilled out my frustration to the person who genuinely believed that I will come over it. Still adjusting to my new life in USA, still adjusting to a life without IBM, Pune and Varsha and wowed by the superpower of the world. 

August – Lonely time. Long days without much to do in office, without many people to talk to, without having means to commute, I was practically living my days confined to the 4 walls I just began to call home. Wondering, wondering deep, wondering deeper, trying to make sense of nonsense, I took up cooking!! :-D Ah! It is so much fun. 

September – Month of single, biggest life changing event. I did the Art of Living Basic course. I probably, did not get all my answers, but I saw so many questions melting away. I am glad I did it, I am glad I could do it, I am glad I had people who helped me do it. Kishore mama, Rajju mama, Nidhi, Ila, Shree and last but not the least, Ram – thank you all! You all were instrumental in bringing sanity to my life. 

October – Birthday time, Diwali time. Varsha visited Dallas, Guruji visited Dallas and some of the simplest things I did gave me maximum satisfaction. After a long time, job satisfaction was not in question and I was getting a lot of “work” satisfaction. Paradigm Shift!

November – Thanks giving month and a month of immense thinking and self speculation. I came to know a lot of things about myself. And I found myself praying for Mumbai in Chicago. An intense month in every sense of the word. 

December – Smiles are back! Lot of things have happened already! I bought my car, ipod and electronic keyboard. All these things make me happy :-). Sandeep's birthday was one of the happiest days this year! And I plan to take the last week off and visit a few places this holiday season. Will upload photos soon after.

I am very happy as I write this. I know I am smiling. I am happy I lived this year and more importantly, lived through this year. I am happy I learnt so many lessons, had so many experiences. I am happy I am more aware of things around me and more sensitive to people around me. And finally, I am going to sit back and celebrate this year. 

Also, I am going to free myself from writing a-post-a-month rule. I am going to become my random self again. I am not going to stop writing, but I am not sure how, when and why I would write. I am going to explore this life for another year and just see how it goes from there!! :-)

To all who read this, I wish you a Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year. Take care, but more importantly, have loads and loads of fun!! We all deserve celebration!

Cheers!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

An incomplete post

People, I have been meaning to write something for a very long time this month. I even have a draft ready. But just could not make myself post it. It has been a month of deliberation, travelling, decision making, self analysing, self criticising, wondering, questioning and what not. I wanted to pen all these emotions. But most of all these, this month has been shocking! Shocking to see the pictures of Taj Hotel burning, worrying once again for friends and family in Mumbai and questioning how a human can inflict such terror on another human being?

Frankly, I don't have words to write anything. Salute to the martyrs who died saving lives of so many. And tears for those who lost everything for no mistake of theirs.

Time is the biggest healer, they say. We soon learn to live again inspite of everything. That is the spirit of life which no terrorist can ever wipe.

In the midst of fear, cheers to the fearless. In the midst of anger, cheers to patience. In the midst of hatred, cheers to love. In the midst of death, cheers to life!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Dhoom Dhadam Diwali Time!

Time for a new post! Well actually, time for a post before I again run out of time. It is October which has just a week left of it. The lazy fingers attached to my hands which in turn stick to my torso and get controlled by the small peanut sized brain got into action after I accidently looked into the calendar. I did not want to repeat the September story of posting some crap at the last moment. :-)

October has always been an interesting month for me. A wonderful time with festival after festival, delicacies after delicacies and most importantly, holiday after holiday! All this starts with Gandhi jayanti, then Dussera and finally the grand Diwali which has been my favorite festival since time immemorial. In between there would be other small events like birthdays in the family of those who are the reason why I am on Planet Earth. My mom, dad and I managed to cramp ourselves in October, you see. So this really is a month of family bonding and gelling and all that goes with it.

So dear readers, it is time to go a little down the memory lane. I remember the look on the face of my mother who would be torn between the desires to buy me two dresses for birthday and Diwali, and buying those much needed boutique covers for the diwan. It was by some strange magic that she would accommodate everything – the dresses, the diwan cover without ever compromising the sweets or firecrackers. Then I was in college and how going home for Diwali and coming back would be one huge event. I would take all the books in the shelf in a vain attempt to convince dad that I was actually in Indore for my Engineering. But he could always pick fiction from the non fiction stuff and my fictitious attempt would blow up like one of the Diwali bombs. And then mom, dad and Sandeep would sit for atleast half a day to pack all the Diwali nashta to be taken to hostel. Believe me, the snacks would be sufficient for the entire hostel to last a week!! Finally, opening those neatly stapled bags and sharing the stuff with the gang in hostel is one of the finest memories of my hostel life. There would be a trade of snacks actually. Anusha ke ghar ka chooda for Neha ke ghar ki mathri. Saumya ke ghar ki chakli for Vineeta ke ghar ki papadiyan. And there will be one thing not for barter! The regular readers guessed it right – Mom made Gujiyes!! 

Yes, I had a grand time then. And this is the first time I am away from my parents for Diwali. I wish my family was around. Being in a foreign place on a festival as grand as Diwali is not a very happy thought. But I have some real grand plans for the D-Day. :-) I hope there is a lot to write about that for the next month. 

So what have I been up to? Well I recently did the Art of Living basic course. To say that the course was great or fantastic would be an understatement. All I can say is that it is a wonderful experience and I highly recommend it to one and all – bachhe, boodhe, naujawan - for getting your life into a perspective. If nothing else, you would end up thinking about answering some really important questions about yourself (and you would be amazed that you have never had an answer to them) and bonding with total strangers! GO FOR IT!! 

So people, I accept your heartiest birthday and Diwali wishes. I prefer cash but you can send in kind as well. Feel free with your gifts.. ;-) Sharmane ki koi baat nahi hai.. 

Now here's for my wish. Let there be loads of sweetness in what you say, efficiency in whatever you do, understanding from people in your thoughts and good will in all your intentions. 

And have a wonderful, peaceful and prosperous Diwali.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Just in Time!

Well, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, welcome me once again to the blog which you visit more often than me! And you know very well how deeply obliged I am for your continued efforts to keep the traffic on this blog going. Hai na? So accept my deepest thanks for visiting with anticipation to find a new post and then cursing me royally after not finding one! Let’s keep this love-hate relationship going…

I have religiously followed one blog per month rule till now for this year and I am just in time this month. I have been thinking of my next blog topic for quite sometime now. But nothing clicked. Nothing made the writer in me sit straight up on my new revolving chair or my new sofa in front of the new TV that I recently purchased, spread my legs on the cute new side table and write my heart out. (All the little tidbits of my life covered in one line! Howzzat!! )

I have been going through all sorts of emotions over the last few days. I was really raged, furious, tentative, angered, frustrated about so many things about life in US - for example, excessive use of dim yellow lights to light up rooms. I mean, the only place apt for yellow lights back in mere apne des are the bathrooms, garages and such nooks and spooky corners. There has been another post here which elucidates the readers here about the effects dimly lit rooms have on me. My photon-deprived brain cells lose all ability to function the small little they are capable of doing and I become very much like "jadoo" of Koi Mil Gaya fame crying dhoop dhoop around.

Another thing which really gets on me is the affinity Americans have with sweet. Man, chocolates, ice-creams, doughnuts and what not! Hell, even breakfasts have sweet syrups topped on lavish layers of butter! As if my already spherical shape was not enough to put the footballs, cricket balls and tennis balls of this world to shame! Now my room mate is an Indian who eats lunch like Americans. She is really well versed with the American dietary habits. I get bugged real long and hard by the various cuisines that she prepares. Why the concept of dal chawal never occurred to Americans who invent so many things, I really wonder. Most of these delicacies have names which twist my tongue so much that I find myself unable to enjoy the taste ! So most of the times, I hardly know what I am eating and I wish there was a way to get back to the dal-chawal-sabzi-roti-rasam-dahi diet.

Desis in US develop many new habits. Online shopping is one of them. You never realize when it becomes a compulsive, impulsive disorder and you want to buy everything online – from kindle to card reader – you want them all in your bag! And if you have crossed all the limits on your credit card, you end up doing window shopping on internet day in and day out! And the result is, your friends (whoever has remained of them now) and family start thinking of you as a shopping catalog – iphone kitne ka hai, yaar do you know anything of external hard disks, Anusha didi, aate time mere liye ek 10000 megapixel ka digicam le aana.. :-| These are all real life examples and you can sulk in peace if you have been quoted!

And then all sorts of questions you have of life. Times when you are totally confused about yourself, your life, your significance in the grand scheme of things and what to make of it take most of your thinking time. And you demand answers. It probably is the last remnant of the mid-20s syndrome in me. I think I will be better after this birthday.. ;-) I was having a very good chat with a friend the other day about all these things. And we agreed that life is not all about knowing. Life is about living which we keep on forgetting every now and then.

Khair, life moves on with the calendar. Mine moves on again and it is about time to add another month to my life. This time I am happier and a little more aware of things around me. Maybe I have changed. Maybe I have grown up a bit. Maybe I just do not care enough. Whatever be the case I am still going to continue whining and complaining about things on this blog.

Atleast till this year end!

Next year, no promises! :-)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Des Pardes..

Hello hai ji sabko. I know what you are thinking. Kahan mar gayi manhoos..pichle ki pichle Friday ko post ka kaha tha and the post and Anusha both are nowhere to be seen. Der aaye durust aaye. This is going to be a long one and not as delicious as I thought it would be. I am a bad cook! 

The thing, behnon aur unke bhaiyon, is my company could not tolerate the sight of me any more. They found me totally disgusting and unbearable and decided to be done with me. So they decided to kick me out! They kicked me so hard, that I landed on seat 41A of Delta Airlines flying to New York. The kick was real hard guys. I bounced once at New York and then I found myself in Dallas. (I can already see some hair falling from your head..;-) ). And my ordeal at the passport office, last year, finally became worthwhile. 

Not many people had the belief that I would board an international flight someday. As with almost everything in my life, I was late to fly international, when almost everyone I know in IT is at a stage where they are refusing them. “Chalo, finally!” was the most respectable compliment I received and I am not even thinking about all the other reactions people gave! But I think der gaye durust gaye. I know so many people back in India gave a sigh of relief when I left. (May I add that the sighs helped the jet propel faster!) There was no shed of tear at the airport. Of all my nalaayak friends, only Saumya felt the need to make sure that I am really leaving and she did everything to spoil the senti mood my mom was in. God only knows what would have happened if the entire Mumbai crowd had come to see me off. My mom did wanna cry, guys, honestly. Though, I have a strong suspicion that it was not because I was going saat samandar paar, but because she felt that she lost the race to my manager and could not get me married before my manager decided to send me to US. 

Life was moving at a very frenzy pace after my Chicken Pox recovery. The kick-me-out date was 27th June and I felt that 27th of June, 2008 would never actually arrive. I was rushing places, trying to wrap up the work in office (one jhooth per post is allowed), giving err, ahem, knowledge transfer sessions, seeing off Ankita, packing for US and packing the stuff which I and Varsha called home for almost 2 years. Incidentally, Varsha has left IBM for good and is in US these days for her MS and yes, you guessed it right, her last working day in IBM was 27th June :-). The day finally came, and encouraged by the readers of this blog, I gave the longest farewell speech ever in history! Does standing on two feet for two hours or speaking continuously for that many hours qualify for an Olympic gold? I wish it did! We would have ended up a little upar on the medal tally. 

27th June is a day I am never going to forget my entire life. The last thing that I wanted to do on that date was to board an international flight. Well that it was the last thing I did on that day is a different thing (I had a midnight flight). I wanted to be at a different place, with some of the important relations but I did not even have a phone access. Sitting on the lounge, waiting for the flight, I realized that the things you want in life come to you at a cost. And sometimes, you are not willing to pay the price. I realized in great measure that day, what it means to be with your people, what support systems are, and what so many relations mean to me. 

The flight was interesting, the food was good, the movies on demand were great and New York skyline was amazing! I was hoping a great flight from New York to Dallas as well. But domestic flights in US suck bigtime, people! I was hungry and all I got was a sour juice and 15 peanuts to eat. Thankfully Veethi and Vipul came to receive me. They are a very sweet couple who, luckily for me, stay in Dallas. Veethi is Varsha’s cousin and I realized that some of the sweetest people I ever came to know have their names start with V. 

I miss India a lot. I miss talking to my family and friends at will. I miss the street food I used to have so often, I miss Kailash bhaiyya ki Pani Puri. I miss the beauty of Pune in monsoons, the time I had with my best friend, the get together at CCDs with the Pune crowd. 

The only thing I do not miss is the sight of Indians! They are just way too many!! :-) 

Am I happy being here? 

Apni marzi se kahan apne safar ke hum hain,
Rukh hawaon ka jidhar ka hai, udhar ke hum hain..

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

About Me..

Hum hain..aur gam hain...

Kuch bhi kaaam nahi hai..
Kuch kaam aata bhi nahi hai..
Log milte rahe..Orkut se judte rahe..
Par ab log profile par aate tak nahi hain..(Thanks to orkut and helpers!)
Baat likhun apne baare mein..
Khayal kuch aate nahi hain..
School gayi kissi sheher mein..
Naam logon ke yaad aate nahi hain..
College bhi gayi kissi aur sheher mein..
Auron ko humare naam ab yaad aate nahi hain..
Padhai kabhi ki nahi, number kam hi aate hain..
Batein ki bahut, dost bade yaad aate hain..
Kai dost bane unke kisse yaad aate hain..
Kai log bichade, kya kya ab yaad aate hain..
Office mein kuch khaas mujhe bhaata nahi hai..
Company ko mere paise yaad aate nahi hain...
To socha blog likhun par koi padhta nahi hai..
Arey ek comment kar do magar koi sunta nahi hai...
Shadi kar lun, ma-papa ko yeh khayal aate hain..
Kabhi ladke humein, kabhi hum ladke ko pasand aate nahi hain..
Life kat rahi hai, sabke duaein saath hain..
Lekin hum hai..par life ke gam jaate nahi hain...

*********

Well I am changing my orkut profile's about me section and I do not want to lose this master creation (ahem) which no one read except those who were lectured, bribed, punished or blackmailed (sam, dam, dand, bhed). So I thought, I would keep it safe and sound and archived on my blog which is the place where all the trash goes..

Now I know, you all are waiting for my next post! Well, the question for me is who all apart form those described in the last para..So if you do happen to read my blog, then, sahibaan, meherbaan, kadradaan, koodadaan or any other type of daan, please wait for a few more days..I have a delicious post coming up which will sure bore you to death! I have been working so hard on it that now I hardly work in office..I have major updates about myself (no, marriage not yet, sigh!) and some blockbuster experiences which sure is going to beat all the Karan Johar dramas of this world..

Tab tak ke liye, read my about me section and pull your hair..Remember, together we can and we will err.. make you go bald!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

My achievement on the virtual world

The biggest revealer of all times, undoubtedly, has been google.com. My four long years in this Sensex boasting IT industry would not have been possible without Google. Behind every successful IT engineer is the beautiful and powerful Google search engine. Though the definition of success is different for different people, for me, success is survival. Without the power of Google’s search, my codes would have gone into infinite loops, my dates would not have got formatted, my timestamps would have been non-existent, my String to number and number to string conversions would have been impossible and in short, I would have been doomed! Nahi nahi this post is not a gaurav gatha of Google dev ki mahima. In fact, this post has nothing to do with Google or search engines in general. Who to maine avain itna kuch likh diya. 

Actually, I was doing some random searches on Google the other day. One of the search keywords was “koi fata” (translated literally to “some poor/pathetic joke” in English). Yeah yeah, I know not very intelligent keywords but who said I made intelligent random searches! But, but I was surprised to see the search results. The first URL, ladies and gentlemen, was my own blog!!! This is the only time I think I came first! Khushi ke mare meri ankhein nam ho gayin, gala bhar aaya saab kya bataun bas rone hi wali thi. Now, I come from a family and friends background where people are listed for writing books on problems like Java Memory Leaks (first link when you search Rajeev Palanki, my brother) and such high fidelity stuff. But someone said every family has a black sheep. I am black by my family standards and I am sheepish most of the times. Err ok, that was a fata and it is precisely for such bakwas that this blog is the most popular fata link ever! 

My PJs are lethal, mass destruction weapons. Any one hearing them can completely lose their mental balance. More people around me are suffering from acute hair fall than around anyone else because they start pulling their hair in disgust! But still, even after bearing all the jokes on them, my managers have not kicked me out of the company, my friends have not stopped talking to me, Varsha has not stopped living with me, my family, even though they have more precious and intelligent members, has not disowned me. Aap sabhi ka mujhpe jo upkar hai use kabhi nahi bhulaya jaega. 

But Pjs hold the wisdom of generations and the paradoxes of life - “ek budhiya bachpan mein mar gayi” is a sample. I have had some really interesting and inspiring sessions with people where we have shared numerous PJs and pondered over serious, mind blowing questions like “Why did the other two chipkali fall off the wall when one started singing?”(answer of course is, the other two started clapping.). Such discussion have only added fuel to the inherent talent I had of killing people by singing and passing jokes. Talent or congenital disorder, I leave it upto the reader to decide.

The motivation of starting this blog has come from this ability to have a PJ for almost every occasion. So people, thank you for coming to my blog, patiently reading stuff and making this the most popular fata link. 

God bless you all!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

My chickened days!

Hey, people! I hope this post finds you in excellent, pink health. I, for one, will honestly wish for this because I have recently experienced a phase of not so pink one and I can tell you that it is really a bad thing.

Before you start imagining me in a hospital bed with drip running on each limb and doctors trying frantically to breathe life in me, let me tell you that it was nothing that serious. I just had a special visit by a small virus in my body. The situation is clinically herpes simplex (popularly known as Mataji in this part of the world and Chicken Pox in the rest of the world). After being through this patch for more than 3 weeks now, I can tell you that there is nothing simple about it.

For one there you will be running a very high temperature, there will be a severe headache and your whole body and face will be covered with sores (they are called pundus in Telugu.). The situation becomes bad if you are staying alone and your friend has gone home on vacation and would be coming back only after 3 days. My ordeal with this started on 30th April when I was all pepped up to enjoy the May Day holiday. But my spirits were dampened because of the sudden temperature. The saddest part was my 250-rupayee ka pizza, ordered for dinner, going down the drain because I was unable to eat. In the morning, unaware of my disease, I got a nice thrashing from my mom for roaming in the summer heat without taking precautions. I was equally unaware and responded by spending the entire day in the sun trying to help her brother with a small thing. Lo ab bolo kya karogi! ;-). I was not doing better in the evening and in the morning; I saw a few pundus here and there and decided to see the doctor. And when she confirmed that, I have been hit by the chicken-virus, I was clueless how to go about it. After all, not everyday you catch a disease that will force you to stay quarantined for God knows how many days and the joy of not going to office for a long time took time to settle. I was excited about spending a lot of time in total ekaant and reflecting about important things in life like what to write next in my blog.

After I came back home, everyone knew that I had chicken pox. It was as if it was broadcasted on all the news channels of the country and Aaj Tak doing a special analysis about the situation as if it were a national crisis. My arrogant self (more popular as my independent self) was sure that I would be able to handle this national crisis on my own and no one, including Mr Prime Minister and my mother, needed to worry about it. But my no-nonsense-tolerating mother had already booked her tickets and was supposed to come down to Pune with Varsha by Sunday. So my ekaant time was reduced from an indefinite period to a couple of days. 

But this couple of days was something that I am going to remember for the rest of my life. I had informed my mangers that their most mehnati, imaandar and intelligent resources would now be required to work extra time and do my work as well since I won’t be coming to office! Though, everyone who reads this blog knows I don’t work, but I liked hearing my managers voice laced with a slight panic. There is a deployment coming and ahem, I am a critical resource for that. I felt wicked! ;-) Chaadar taan ke, palang pe let ke, TV ka remote haath mein rakh ke I was feeling happy as a child. It was as if I was reliving my summer vacations. And I realized that in this age of instant communication, getting out of reach and out of touch is a luxury that chicken pox sufferers can surely enjoy. 

By Friday evening and Saturday morning, I was well covered with pundus all over. They were growing in size and number by each passing hour. IPL kept me entertained, I had few things to eat as I was unable to and I was practically surviving on dosages of Rooh Afza every two hours. In times like these, the maidservants play a very important part. Our house cleaner, Sindhu, had informed in every ghar she works about my beemari and how awful I was looking. Our padosan was very kind to send me a glass of keri ka panha. I had terrified the kid who came to deliver a dabba of rasgullas with my looks and the shop stopped home delivery for a while! Then the aunty from the next block came to visit me. She came looking for Sindhu and suddenly she started babbling something about some health insurance policies. She started explaining me how working girls should take them. Err..Aunty ji, can’t you see the pundus on my face! Can’t you see that all this poor girl cares for is to watch those highlights of the last night’s IPL match and all you care is to sell me a sick health insurance policy! 

But the highlight of my ordeal was Saturday night. I had suffered enough to forget about my arrogant self and all I wanted to see was the sight of my mother and Varsha. And when there was a power failure in the middle of night, I did not know what to do. They definitely were the toughest two hours I had been through and I realized how important bijli is to our lives. Bhaiyya, bijli bachao nahi to tumhare bachche chicken pox mein pareshan ho jaenge. That night taught me a lot more things and I was reminded of the words of a dear friend – You have to go through your pains, alone. There are no proxies.

Finally, my mother and Varsha arrived. And immediately my treatment was started with nariyal paani. I drank nariyal pani for the next 15 days and now I am sure, a test would reveal that all the water content in my body has been replaced with naariyal paani. My mom, an expert caretaker, knew her job well. She fought her enemy with neem leaves, dahi chawal, nariyal pani, mosambi juice all strategically spaced throughout the day. Varsha, the only person who thinks I look beautiful never let me, even for a moment, feel any kind of self pity. 

I am doing well now, recuperating and fighting with the weakness. My vacation is over and my team is happy to seem my face that now has chicken pox marks all over. But I realized how important it is to see those familiar things around. When I was alone, all I wanted to see was the face of my mother and Varsha in that familiar maroon night suit. Aapke apne log hi aapke liye hote hain. Inki qadr karo. Who kehte hain doodh piyo to p lo. Duniya mein koi aur yeh bolne wala nahi milega. Varsha is the only person who thinks I still look beautiful, even with all those pundu marks. Aise dost har koi nahi hota hai. Bahut sahej ke rakho aise doston ko apne paas.

I am fit enough to have my arrogant-self back. Apart from my family which includes Varsha, Amit ji’s and Shrijeet’s mom had special contributions. Thanks auties for telling me so many things about this beemari and about taking the right foods. Thank you Shalabh for helping my mom reach me as soon as she could. Thank you Shrijeet for quickly coordinating things and that wonderful card. And last but not the least, thank you Amit ji, for keeping me company when I was without one. 

The most difficult thing to do is to take care of yourself. Suggestion. Start practicing that!

Stay healthy.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Worthless Worth.

All right people! It is proved that this is a worthless blog. As per Technorati this is a blog worth $0.00. That the dollar itself is losing worth these days is a different issue altogether and I do not intend to discuss world economy here at any rate. And so you see, I don’t think it really matters if I post here or not. I am too lazy to type and I don’t want to plagiarize on my blog by doing what I do best – CTRL + C & CTRL + V. It is my blog and I don’t wish to post here. Ah! I like making such arrogant statements :-).

Sometimes I really think what is worthwhile after all. Different people have different opinions and I respect that. Well I saw some strange things happen since the last time I posted here. Strange behaviors, strange reactions, strange situations and I admit I have been left a little disturbed with the proceedings. I saw a nice status message somewhere in my gmail contacts “Friendship is priceless”. Nice thought. But how often do we value the priceless? Over last few days, I have seen priceless becoming worthless for so many. Such are times when you get a chance to separate chaff from the grain from your own life. But weeding them out is painful. For, the land nourishes both the grain and the weed the same way. It must pain the land when the weeds need to be removed ruthlessly. People come in your life for reason, season and a lifetime. Yeah I am taapoing shamelessly from a forwarded email. They come and go, people I mean. Some stay. But the problem comes when we want them to stay. We start by holding the hand. Then gripping it hard and then the only thing that is left is the strong pull exerted until it breaks the hand and the relation itself. And what could have been a beautiful memory becomes a sad and ugly face of questions, accusations, allegations and what not.

I let people go. I never stopped anyone from going. Sometimes I move on and then I never look back. Not because I don’t care. But because I don’t think it is worth stopping them or staying in their lives anymore. I must have been a reason or season for them. But what happens when you suddenly encounter your past? It makes me think. And sometimes I wonder – did I do enough for their worth? Should I have done something to stop them - like holding the hand? Was I too reckless and careless? Was there a chance of a lifetime and I blew it up? I don’t know. But I think about it. There always is a maybe. Sometimes this maybe factor is so strong that you almost want it to be true. But maybe is an illusion. And a worthless one. Let bygones be bygones. Move on. But it is not easy. You know, as you start aging, the number of people you will meet will increase and the chances of serious encounters will decrease. Will there be a second chance? And my hopelessly hopeful self says yeah, maybe there will be.

What makes people special? What separates some I, V, S or A from any X, Y, Z? Is it their nature or their behavior towards me? Why do they behave the way they do? Is it because of my nature? Yeah because they are normal, routine people for most of the other people in the world. So you see we make people special in our lives. Inherently they are normal people like everyone in the world with a specific emotional, mental, spiritual level. We give them that special status and then expect them to behave in that special way. They should say those special things to you always. You try extra hard to make them realize how special they are. And then you expect them to acknowledge it everytime. If they don’t because they are in a different state of mind then you start throwing tantrums and then you expect that special person to understand you. What a worthless exercise! We waste our entire lifetimes trying to please people and satisfying our own bloated egos. So, now I promise you I, V, S and A that I will never burden you with my expectations because you guys are special because I made you special in my life. And I have full intentions of keeping this promise unlike my promise of writing regularly. :-)

It has been a good learning time. But the learning was not a pleasant one. Most of them were shocking experiences in my life. Not in my life exactly but you do learn from what happens to lives crisscrossing yours. I have decided to change a few things. Not because it will make me more worthwhile. Because then, maybe it will be easy to deal with the loads of worthlessness within and outside.

One last question to self. Is blogging worth the effort? I don’t know. The day I am sure of the answer, I will quit this world of worthless words.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Bhaiyya bane Saiyyan!

What an eventful last 20 days I had! There are so many things to talk about about what I did last February. It was Prateek’s wedding after all and one of the grandest events we have ever had in the family. Prateek is my first cousin who uses the 25 days difference between our birthdays to suit his convenience! He would become the strict elder brother and would make me touch his feet on Rakhi. Or become the extremely loving one who would want me to be the first one to tie the Rakhi knot. He has been a very special brother and all my love and wishes to Amruta and Prateek. 

There is a lot that can be written about Prateek himself or Amruta herself. I could start with our childhood days and tell you about the danga we created as kids. But then that would be an entire lifetime. I could talk about how they met and how they finally convinced their families to get them married. But that would not make a very juicy post because it was all very simple and without the family drama associated with alliances. I could maybe, start with the grand engagement ceremony we had in Pune a few months back and how these two lovebirds reduced their phone bills from 7K to 1.5K (yes, per month!) after the engagement. I could talk about the arrangements made for the wedding. But again, you know everything about how we marry our kids in India! The arrangements are never short of being mega fanfare and indeed, they were. I could talk about Prateek’s innumerable designer dresses or Amruta’s lehnga. I could talk about how Prateek’s haldi ceremony was an early Holi for others. I could talk about the DJ present in almost every event in the three days and how people were ready to dance at the drop of a hat, with or without music. I could talk endlessly about how Prasan mesmerized everyone with his singing and dancing abilities or how disappointed we all were when Sandeep could not make it to all the major events because of his mid sems. I could talk about some amazing dances by my granny, my mom and my dad’s patang udaana steps! I could devote at least 5 complete posts to my sweet maamis (specially Chamu mami) and their non-veg jokes and serious pranks! I could go on about how amazing Rachana looked almost everyday and what an excellent dancer Apeksha is. I could tell you what we did in 5 completely sleepless nights. I could tell you how we recorded the snores of everyone at night and how we would laugh the entire day broadcasting them. 

I could go on and on and still could not cover those 5 days in a post. What I will do instead, is post the most memorable events I could capture. Believe me people, you don’t need too many things to be happy. A camera and a great family is enough. 

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** While the above where the most memorable ones, there were a few moments which tortured..the last video is a sample.. :-)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love makes Life Live. Really?

No, I won’t regret anything about this day! It is just another routine day and I fail to understand what all the hue and cry is about, why the rate of roses looks like our Sensex turned upside down! Infact, I totally am with Sena (no not the nation’s armed forces, I mean the local forces armed with a moral lathi!) on this issue. All those “celebrating” the Valentine’s Day are a threat to our culture and should be stopped at all costs! They are doing nothing but polluting our, err, moral values!

Sigh! I wish I really believed in all that I just said. I wish I could stop myself from thinking about why after a quarter of century I still find the most beautiful emotion so elusive and out of reach. Why it is that some people keep on being in love, almost incorrigibly and why a few like me assume the famous poker faced, marvelously clueless expression whenever the dhai aakhar of Hindi and four-lettered English word is mentioned! More than that, why some people are loved by so many and why some others (uff! like me again) are never subjected to even a single proposal. I have been wondering about these things of late but another lone V-Day has spurred the writer in me to action.

As I see it now, the best chance I ever had of “falling” in love was in college. Now, for that, you need to do a few things. For one, you should go to the college! In my case, I used to be the benchmark for short attendence. Rohan would remark after missing a couple of classes that “Arey! Anusha ki short nahi hai attendence..I can still miss a few classes for RT!” So you see, I had already lost the edge! And since I never cared about my education, I would lose a little bit of edge everyday. My friends, Vandit and Rohan were extremely kind. They tried to find a match for me - a best fit given my circumstances. The dude was the AB baby (err..please don't rake your brains with the initials..) of our class who was trying to finish his BE in Elex and Instru since I think 1995. :-( Well, my mangal dosh was really bhari on our AB baby and the poor guy flunked the exams yet again. Ek choti si love story shuru hone se pehle khatam! There is another thing you should probably do to get the attention required to be loved! Behave like a girl (if you are a female homo sapien that is!). Umm..in my case, Shant would fear my entry and exit the few times I chose to attended classes. “Bhago Bhai aa gaya” was something very commonly heard whenever I used to pass through corridors! So you see I never was considered an eligible contender when it came to matters of the heart.

I never realized in college that life would become very tough once I am out of it. If you are in a company such as mine, you wonder why God stopped manufacturing decent guys anymore. The few remaining specimens of this type are already married or engaged or even worse, younger than you! The can-be-considered cases cannot be considered because I find many of them have this strange habit of drinking, puking, and then drinking some more until they puke again! I love my mom too much to consider such cases. Even though the fact of the matter is they never thought about me as well. They were busy puking I guess! The remaining of the can-be-considered cases cannot be considered because they have a better choice and are not interested in me! :-(

Ab what to do other than sit in office on yet another 14th of Feb and utilize the “free” time to write another stupid post! I know people will have loads of plans for the day. They will wear the brightest of red color, gift those heart shaped balloons and buy expensive gifts. It must give all those lovebirds a high. I have plans too. :-) I will prepare the design document, attend a call with a firang and wish for everyone in love. And when it is night again, I will go to my bed and wonder with a poker face, clueless expression what love is all about.

"To love is to suffer. To avoid suffering one must not love. But then one suffers from not loving. Therefore to love is to suffer, not to love is to suffer. To suffer is to suffer. To be happy is to love. To be happy then is to suffer. But suffering makes one unhappy. Therefore, to be unhappy one must love, or love to suffer, or suffer from too much happiness. I hope you're getting this down." - Woody Allen, Love and Death

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

A new beginning..

First things first - Heartiest New Year wishes to all the readers of this blog. May the New Year ring the right kind of bells in your life and may you wish everything you deserve so that you get everything you wished for!

Another year went by, another new beginning. The New Year celebrations bring memories of two years - 2001 and 2007 - former for the gala celebrations we had in hostel and the second for, well, all the wrong reasons and it is better if I don't delve into it. This time I wanted not to repeat the history of last year's celebrations(?). So I was a bit careful. I had resolved not to hurt people. But my first resolution went for a toss with my efforts to synchronize my limb movement with music - an activity vaguely resembling to what is frequently referred as "dance" in routine parlance. Varsha and Ankita are recuperating and I will convey your "get well soon" wishes to them. 

By the time of writing this post, I had broken all the resolutions I made a week back. So there really isn't much to tell you about them. I had decided to hit the gym with a vengeance - I have not even bothered to step in (Round is a shape, I am in shape!). I had decided to control my emotions while watching ads, movies, plays - but I watched TZP and there went my resolution with a bucket full of tears. And yes the one I could keep for a full week was my resolution not to write blogs. But I just could not stop on the 8th day. And here I am with my year's first post. That reminds me I did a major kand last year. I created another blog and found a new, more torturous and horrendous way of reducing human life expectancy. I created a new blog you can find here - http://anusha-sings.blogspot.com. Now that's torture of the third degree kind! 

But, there are few things I really want to change. One thing is that I want to leave early from office. You see spending extended hours in office is a total wastage of critical resources like electricity, water, caffeine, chairs, server space, bandwidth. We are running short of these IT lifelines anyway. I have been successful till now. Let's see how long I am able to kick myself out of office premises before sunset. Another is to really really think hard and honestly about getting married. Some very important people have been giving me all sorts of reasons in favor of tying the nuptial knot. Mind you, they themselves have not experienced the effects of the same but are quite sure of the benefits. Since then I am trying to convince myself of them and mom has started praying harder. There is no decent Telugu Brahmin teetotaler IT engineer (male variant ;-) ) of average height and build, hailing from a north based family to consider yet, but my family wants me to marry by the time it is time to change the calender! OK ji, lekin ladka kahan hai?? :-O. Sigh! Third, I really want to start my music lessons and I will be highly obliged if anyone can direct me to a Hindustani Classical Music class in Pune. And there are many fourths, fifths etc which I do not remember right now! 

Anyway, this blog is becoming a good place to vent out my frustration. And I am quite sure that this will be put to good use this year. So you can expect more posts than the previous two years. I suggest keep your reading of this site to the minimal. 

And here is something worthwhile I did this weekend. I went to a trek with my brother to Sinhagad. And here are the snaps which I am sure you will like a lot!