Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Google & My Favorite Things

My Favorite Things
-Oscar Hammerstein II and Richard Rodgers

It occured to me just today that google would give me these lyrics. Its a song I loved a lot as a kid of 5th std and is associated with sweet memories of my friendship with mew (this is what her friends call her now). Herself, me & S were kind of best pals during those 3 years of school in Delhi and then with my dad getting trfed to Ambala, we lost touch only to be found last year through NamesDatabase.

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens;
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens;
Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Cream-colored ponies and crisp apple strudels;
Doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles;
Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings;
These are a few of my favorite things.

Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes;
Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes;
Silver-white winters that melt into springs;
These are a few of my favorite things.

When the dog bites,
When the bee stings,
When I'm feeling sad,
I simply remember my favorite things,
And then I don't feel so bad. 

PS: How did I get at this today out of the blue? Actually I am at mom's place & enjoying my vacations. She,  out of sheer love for me & my love for writing, digged out my old diary and that brought back the memories. I tried googling for "rain drops on roses & whiskers" and voila! I got the full song lyrics.. 

Hey Girls! This is dedicated to both of you. me loves u!!

The year will last for 2 more days

& in less than 2 days we will be into a fresh new year! The reason for me counting days is nothing to do with me blogging right now. I am just feeling good and here is the reason...

What do these images hint at? yes! u are right. Its abount MASSAGE. Today I had a nice, soothing head massage (Thank you mom!!) n am feeing sleepy. This is one activity that is always in my 'must do's during wkends or vacations.

In the hectic stressful routine most of us are forced into, nothing feels better, perhaps, than a massage. A head massage for example helps decrease muscle tension and at the same time help improve the condition of our hair. Based on an ancient healing system & ayurveda, a head massage helps relieve daily stress built up in the head, neck and shoulders.

The other day I was reading abt benefits of massage & how to setup A Mini-Spa Experience at Home.

1. Research has shown that people who get a head massage before any potentially stressful situation (like exam or presentation) show a significant decrease in anxiety and respiratory rates, as well as a significant increase in white blood cells and natural killer cell activity, suggesting a benefit to the immune system. Office workers who get a regular head massage are more alert, perform better and are less stressed than those who weren't massaged. It is also said to improve circulation in the head, enhance the senses, improve memory and promote clear thinking.

2. People who suffer from headaches, migraines, insomnia, vertigo and depression may benefit from head massage. It also addresses the harmful effects of cell phone radiation.

3. Air-conditioning and artificial lighting of the office environment often cause headaches, as can sitting slouched in front of the computer all day or the steering wheel, which may result in the formation of stress nodules in the neck and shoulders.

It is believed that a head massage:

  • increases oxygen and glucose supply to the brain,
  • improves circulation of cerebrospinal fluid,
  • dissipates accumulated toxins in the head,
  • increases the brain's pranic energy level,
  • helps reduce hair loss, premature balding and greying,
  • growth and lustre of hair is improved,
  • massage of the temples, eyebrows and forehead improves eyesight and concentration,
  • good for the sinuses,

All this because there are several important acupressure points on the head.

Just wanted to share this with you and record it for myself. So while I go for a sleep now; you must, with all those party plans for the new year eve, keep few hours to go indulge in some self pampering...

Sunday, December 28, 2008


I loved this post i read yday. It has a link to the vedio of some heart-rendering words spoken by this blogger on her grandpa's funeral. Her journey with him sounded so perfect and so ideal and wonderful. It reminded me of my own though i dont have any memory of similar moments associated with them. coz I hardly got to stay with them. 

The only time i remember having spent with them is of 
  1. summer vacations, when we used to visit them and the villages of bageshwar n garur in uttaranchal. we used to get some interesting peek-a-boo into their young days thru their intriguing tales of the fun, horror, hardships, festivals, rituals, relatives etc but those were short whiles full of love and pampering from them and would end with episodes of crying while coming back. they may forget to take medicines after meal OR forget where they kept their dental set or keys but had an amazing memory to remember everything about x's son's wife's brother's mother's daughter's husband's father :) ... u can try joining the dots to understand this relation & if u guess it right, u win a gift!
  2. my amma (thats how i call my daadi) was against short hair for girls so my small pony tail used to be a victim of her odd comparisons with various animal tails and I obviously getting upset, used to go sit at the edge of the nearby hill overlooking a river, wondering why she does that to me. She now has given up on us and lets us be.
  3. my sisters wedding was the first wedding in our generation and my naani's happiness had no bounds. Inspite of her round shape she danced till she got drop dead tired but only in front of we three (mom, me n di) n i cherish that moment even now; she sadly didnt survive till mine. I still remember the huge collection of cotton sarees she had, which she threw open to her daughters to choose from, everytime we visited her. for us, she had mishri( a common uttaranchali local sweet thing) available all the time.
  4. most of the memories are of times when we were in school. of times after that, i am trying but cant rememer much..because then we used to meet rarely, for some function or similar event and they are much of quiet ppl with us kids(for them we always remain that ...isnt it). I know their wishes are always with us but maybe I didnt share a great rapport with them and when i see some of my friends being too close to their grandparents or when i read abt that post, i miss having such bond with mine as well. 
maybe my way of thinking and reacting is not what will keep me close to elder generations..take for example my dad, not that he or me love each other any less but something is amiss. My dad is home(from his 2 month stay in hospital) and since i happen to be in mumbai with them for my final days at work in India and most importantly to be with them till he gets better; he is hating(maybe this is a strong word to be used) me for the time i spend with my laptop... so much so that i feel like running away from them..... :|

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Forgetful me, wishing everyone Merry X'Mas

Remembering my atm pin is always painful but if I keep withdrawing regularly, if not me, my fingers remember the code. Recently when I tried twice and it didn’t work I was like WTH.. I wish I had stored it at a place I could refer to easily.. I visited the branch to sort this. The lady at the counter suggested that I try again today at the most twice before it would get blocked, but it didn’t allow me more than once and this time also my fingers entered wrong pin.

So I had to place a request for new cheque book over the counter and make a withdrawal.. Forgot the pin coz I had not used it for long :p saving money? huh! let me not talk abt that right now.


What bugged me even more was me forgetting my office login password today. Am on leave these days and in the evening when I was passing by my office, I thought of meeting my colleagues there n checking the emails. And there I was, yet again, with forgetful set of fingers. how could I??? how cound I forget the password I was keying in every morning... Mom says calm down... meditate... don’t think too much...

So this Xmas I am not going to think of anything and just relax! & before i forget wishing u, here I go...


Merry X'mas and May Santa get you the most sought after goodie for you while what I want is a healthy decent memory for myself.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I met this "REAL HERO" yday.

When mom told me about 2 commando's in the same ward as pa, I couldn’t wait for the next day to come and me to talk personally with them of their heroic hair raising experience. Same commandos who had encounters in Taj & Oberoi last month that most of us had been watching n reading so much abt. I spoke with one of them & here I pen the accont of it.

This young man must be in his mid twenties and has had 3 bullets pass thru his body while he luckily escaped some more. I didn’t want to make it sound like an interview, so simply asked him I was eager to know what happened around him. And I am happy he did that with a smile and some spice. Pravin Tibatiya, he is a MARCO. I fell short of words to tell him how proud we are for his courage. Such men are the real heroes!

They don’t call the trouble makers as 'terrorist' they call them militants. These MARCOs are trained and have instructions to 'shoot at sight' which means no militant caught by them is left alive.

It was the night of 26th running into 27th dawn. Pravin was among the first Naval troops reaching Taj at around 12.30 post midnight and his family had just no idea of it. While cautiously searching each lobby and floor in a group, they came across a dark room and the whereabouts of light switches were not known even to the person from hotel, guiding them. They couldn’t be using headlight, lighter or torch coz it would mean "here I come, shoot me pls' kind of signals to the militants in case they are positioned around, so they moved slowly and suddenly observed movement at the other end of the dark room (if someone is already inside, the science of light and sight says that they would be able to see them coming in- even in darkness). This group therefore slid back to where they came from except for Pravin who not able to turn back, hid himself behind a pillar & realised in no time that there are 3 militants behind a similar pillar on the other side of the room. There was random shooting in intervals. From the sound of gun/cartridge/magazine made by the unknowns, this MARCO force had already got to know of the AK-47's being used by militants. They also carried grenades and tear gas, all this being used quite wisely to make it tough this side. Pravin couldn’t move, neither could he see anything nor the gang outside could help him anyhow. Every time he moved, he had to face gun shots and he fired a few too. He was carrying grenades with him and when he used one, he just kept waiting for it to blow. Sadly, It didnt work. I asked him "were you scared?" to which he smilingly replied "dar hi hai jiski waja se insaan har kadam sambhal kar agey badhata hai”(Its fear that teaches you to be mindful, in short).

After playing this ‘eye spy’ game for about 1.5 hours between 1:30 & 3am, when he had already held her breadth for 5 min and couldn’t hold more, he finally thought death is certain. what he had to decide was - whether he wanted to die of tear gas filling his lungs or the bullet shots. So he pulled his socks, gathered everything he could (mentally n emotionally n physically) and jumped out from behind the pillar and ran towards the exit, without stopping to fire continuously at the other pillar, not sure if he gunned anyone to death. How were they surviving the tear gas is a mystery to me yet but what I missed to mention earlier is the reason why Pravin could not move out earlier with his group. When they were searching for the light switches n moving in slowly n they heard some movements, there was sudden firing when probably the militants would have seen them; one bullet hit him and actually blew off his left ear.

So all this while, he was bleeding, bearing the excruciating pain and not in his most alert states, just thanking god that it was not his brain. He also thanks god now that he was not wearing helmet (though I thought it was stupid of someone to send the MARCO in without helmets for security.) He says, if he had a helmet on, the bullet would have entered the helmet n moved round within the bullet proof helmet to rip off the top part of it only to make it worse for him. Painful isn’t it?

Once out, he fell unconcious in a while and was rushed out of the hotel, there was no medical facility right there so he was put in ambulance to the Naval hospital at 3.20am where he is being treated by various doctors for different parts of his brave soul’s abode.

The respect for him grows manifold when I learn his response to the 50K cheque offered to him last wk by someone from the state gov. This official made efforts to personally visit him but couldnt resist sounding irritated when Pravin refused to accept the cheque saying “do u even have an idea that it took me 3 hrs to find you here?” when Pravin humbly replied – “Sir what I did is just my job and defence even pays me for this. If you still wish to offer something, pls offer to the defence fund and when you talk of the painful 3 hrs, please dont forget the 60 hours put in by the force without a blink of eye.”

Monday, December 22, 2008

O'Fisshhhhh !!

Allora! This is a latest addition to my bag of words. Courtesy Amit, who just got back from a fun filled trip training program with his international colleagues in Dublin(more on that later sometime). Today I greet you with Allora, which as per my pati, in Italian, means 'come on'.. so, allora! into my little world of cooking experiences. 

I am not a kitchen kitchen person. Neither do I live to eat. But there are times when I feel passionate about cooking. And this is going to be my first post on one of such days. 

While blog browsing last week, I read a fish recipe and since I love fish(live as well as cooked), I thought to myself 'why not experiment' on fish - if it turns out well, good! else its only me who will get to know. And the fact that my mom tasted and had a full piece of it especially when she has left non veg by choice, it meant a reward yday.

I had bought just 3 pieces of rohu from the local fishwala to try my hand and my plan was – I will taste one before mom is back form hospital, have the second with dinner and since mom anyways wont have it, will take the 3rd for dad to taste the next day n earn few praises. (u can imagine what a strategist I could be even in smallest of matters). Pa, come home soon, we’ll cook one full fish for you :) ye! what a motivation to recover fast.

I am posting one pic here, just for you :D, and the recipe is customised to my imagination n out of whatever I could find in mom/Manu’s kitchen.

Marinated the fish with turmeric and salt for 15 min (wanted to add curd but wasn’t handy)

Heat mustard oil in the kadai and put a split chilli & let it sputter,

Then I put mustard n cumin seeds plus a hint of heeng for flavour,

Put 2 whole pieces of garlic and 1 finely chopped onion,

When the onion gets brown, add turmeric, salt, some garam masala.

Further, add one chopped tomato and stir it till it starts leaving oil.

Now add water to make the gravy and let it come to boil.

While doing the above, simultaneously fry the fish on tawa with little oil and keep aside. 

Once the curry is done and fish is also fried, put it gently into the kadai and let it cook on full flame for 5 min.

I didn’t have coriander leaves @ home, else, garnishing is a must must for me.

With this, its ready to be savoured.

Amit darling, u missed it boy! I(mean me?) did quickly call to tell him this :)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Such is life?

I fell in love with this Garhwali handsome jawan from the nearby air force base. he used to visit my fathers shop frequently to see me buy grocery. My baba’s shop was just outside the camp in Bagdogra, West Bengal. He was well built but only 19 then and I was 16 when our eyes met, later he  fought with one and all for persuasion, to make it happen and we got married in may 95. From there our life was happy together.

His family comprised of an old mother and 2 brothers. The mother never liked me but still my husband loved me very much and he allowed me live my way. We visited his village 4-5 times, and as years passed by we had babies. And today I have 3 of them, the eldest daughter is 12 yrs, a son of 10 years and another daughter of 6 years. They all love their father. I have studied only till 8th standard, and he never let me realize that I don’t know anything about the ways of the world. Whenever we needed to go out and work things out, he would manage it; be it gas cylinder, bank, train reservation, kids schools n studies, buying things for household needs. Since I knew he is with me, I never had to worry.

he fell ill some months back and doctors said its jaundice. I tried my jhad fuk ilaz and when he didn’t get well, he rushed to the sick quarters of bhuj air force where he was posted then. his condition didn’t improve so doctors shifted him to the bigger hospital in Mumbai near the place terrorists attacked recently. He called me that time telling that there is shooting and blasts happening in TAJ hotel. I was in Bhuj with my children but wanted to come and meet him. he said no. I was able to feel the pain in his voice and ask him to come to Mumbai every time he called but since I had to take care of the kids who are going to school in kendriya vidyalaya, I stayed back with a belief that he will be ok and come back soon. he also assured us of this. but two days back, he said “theek hai phir tu aa ja.” I asked one of his relatives staying nearby to arrange for me to come to Mumbai and be with the children till I come back. I wanted to see him with my eyes to assure myself.

I reached Mumbai by train. when I went to his bed, he hugged me and started crying. he had never cried like this before. he was all pale and lean lying on the bed. I controlled myself somehow & gave him an assuring hug that he need not worry. then the whole of yday I was sitting by his side. applying oil on his feet, giving him some juice to have and when he said he wants to have muli (radish) and the doc said he should not be given this coz it creates gas, I gave little bit of it to him without doctors notice. he told me to take care of the kids and live wherever I want to and do whatever I want to. I hated him for talking like this. and in the evening I said bye to him and went to the room he had got arranged for me by talking to doctors about me coming there to see him. it was around half a km away from the hospital where most of the attendants of patients come in the night.

I wish the next day would not have come. in the morning I walked to the hospital, and when I reached there, doctors were talking in English.. one of them patted my back and slowly said, sorry we couldn’t do much and he is no more! there was some mask on my husbands face maybe for oxygen or something. what do I say? I suddenly felt some lightening had struck my head. how could this happen???????? I don’t know what to do. I want to jump into the sea. please tell these doctors to give me an injection so I go with my husband...


yday was the first time in my life I was in a situation where being the only person sitting next to a lady just turned widow, in a hospital, all broke, so I gathered all my courage to try n console her and in the process of doing so, she was wailing with eyes wide open and told me her story.

In a state of shock for this unexpected had happened, she was inconsolable.

she belonged to bengal and her husband was from garwal. so it was a love marriage. the guys mother was not in favour so now she is gonna hate this lady even more of causing this curse to his son (that’s what this lady HEMA is fearing the most). what a pity/// I explained her that she needs to pray for her husband soul to rest in peace at this moment and not worry about other things.

she will get a job in air force since her husband died while serving, so how will she raise her kids and make is living was not an issue. the issue was where will she go? to her in-laws who don’t like her anyways, who stay in some village while her kids study in KV OR to her parents where there is an air force station nearby and a support system for sure.

she wants to do the last rituals in haridwar as that is the place near his native. but carrying his body from Mumbai to haridwar would be a cost to his brother who hesitates to spend saying air force will pay everything to HEMA later, who wants to go to bagdogra to her parents, where do I get the money from? This elder brother was looking like one lower middle class fellow but still do you think like this at such moment///


Family matter but it pained to see all this from such proximity yesterday when I reached hospital to see my dad.

The reason for death of this young man of 33 yrs was serious wound in his stomach caused during removal of stones by lazer. since he also had jaundice, he couldnt be operated and the the stone complicated the case. This is what i learnt from the people around.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Bloggers galore..

Today I didnt go to the hospital. And owing to my block leave at work, i had ample of time to myself. Mom had asked me to visit the doc to chk why my right hand fingers hv this tingling feeling but since the doc last time suggested that i do neck n shoulder exercises along with some nerve boosting vitamins which i am doing already, i skipped the visit. 

Smitten by the blogging bug of late, I was completely into reading some indian blogs on varied subjects today. And it amazes me to see the creativity - both in writing as well as designing the blogs. And to add to this, some bloggers put these interesting widgets (links, info, codes etc) on their sites. I really dont know where to get them from and neither am I a coder to do it myself :(

Amit's friend and colleague who is a wonderful blogger himself helped me with putting a simple but interesting website hit counter on my blog. He is the one who gave me my first and only award in this blog arena, "The Butterfly Award". Thank you dude :). I am yet to figure out how to follow the rules of blog award & will learn that n follow them soon. I also added some quiz results to my page today. It was fun - click on the pic that best describes ur answer to a question and the quiz result reveals something about you. Try for yourself here. I had taken such tests online earlier as well but this time i was interested in getting these codes to put them on my blog.. 

ok so i was browsing through these blog posts today n while doing so was enjoying their writing style. I noticed many similarities between me n few of them; the difference being - they could so very well put their stories into words and i still struggle.. but the best part is I enjoyed reading them so i think blogging definitely is gonna be my cherished zone for now...

PS: I blogrolled you coz i liked ur page n would love to visit u often, hopefully you dont mind! 

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Love in abundance...

If you are looking for anything related fitness products/cycles in Delhi, head for Jhandewalan Cycle Market near karol bagh. That is where we got our treadmill(TM) from, a gift to my sweetheart with love and some ambitious(over) motives. While I dont remember the power specifications, it was a sportrack's motorised model with power incline, 7 preset programs and came with a digital weighing machine(WM) free alongwith it which makes a great combo - allows you to keep a regular check on the impact of whatever little running you do. Under other normal circumstances, its cost would have brunt a big hole in my wallet but when in love, it doesnt actually count or matter.

We both started with full enthusiasm as we did have time owing to our different work timings then. Some encouragement also came in from my sister in law who is a freak herself and is in best of shapes. Everyone visiting us would be impressed and would not leave without burning few calories on it, be it Kharbanda aunty(ur landlady) or Amit's Delhi wali buaji, our cousins or my 4 yr old nephew for that matter. One of the regular rituals while at home would include each one in the family standing on the WM in turns and if the count is nowhere near the expected one(which was the case with most of them), give genuine reasons for that. 

Inspite of our health concious breakfasts and thoughtful gifting of TM, we both gained some kilos after marriage. They say its sign of prosperity and count of love ur spouse showers on u. so happy we are! 

When not in use as in proper use, we used to spread our towels/jeans on it for drying making full use of it.
Most of the episodes of Akshay Kumar's "Khatro ke khiladi" were watched while running and each one of us inspired the other to take out some time at least few days a wk for it but since the wgt meter went higher instead of coming down, it was labled ineffective. Even the WM was called faulty by your's truely, who else but mr pant! the biggest mystery to him has been the different wgt gaining tendencies of ours inspite of the fact that both of us have more or less the same diet (yes, he doesnt each much actually).

now when i neither have him not the TM around, i love recalling those olden days.. and many more incidents linked to this subject. like the squash, badminton and swimming sessions in the sports club with Sachin, like who is Sachin?, like where is the TM now & y? like the story of spending 1k dhms on the very first night of landing in dubai, like the tiny bottle with a funny sumo's pic on it and some little hopes inside, like the atkin's diet program of someone, and like someone's smiling teeth whenever he would hear this- "hey u seem to have reduced" and the droopy face when the stupid WM doesnt quite support that.

Lazy bums but love in abundance!! that sums it up. 
and hey this one was on special request as amit was asking me if i have any new blog posts.. & nothing else comes to my mind when he is not around!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Working for 7 Years!!

I often have random conversations with myself. like all of us do perhaps. and I am very passionate about my work plus workplace.

I am posting one such conversation that i had few months ago (In Aug'08).

After learning to walk and eat, and student life of 16 yrs, I jumped into my first job! my objective was to earn, financial independence as well as knowledge of the things out there. A thought just crosses my mind right now as i sit in office having nothing more important to do - a thought that I will complete 7 working yrs in this Oct, on 10th Oct 08 to be precise. The first day at work with anxiety and excitement is still so fresh in the memory..

Being attached to one single company gives a high. Moved into 5 different roles broadly, growing richer in terms of learning, experience & in the literal sense J as well. I am happy. I have gone places, met & befriended so many ppl, done number of things to my contentment – all while being associated with this one employer and I think I would not be what I am today if not for this professional stint. Wherever I am, it just takes one sight of this bank’s logo to make me jump like a kid with exhilaration, it gives me something like a swish of cool breeze & I can’t control telling “Hey – that’s my bank” to whoever is around me. Having said that, should this single & so beautiful life we get be spent in the corporate jungle? I am now feeling the need to think ‘what next?’ Not clear in my mind as to what I would rather do but signals are strong enough that it’s got to be something diff from what I have done for last 7 years.

Before you think i was bored or not happy with the job and was thinking abt sitting at home or being a mom plus homemaker– you are wrong! Sitting at home is what I wanted to do at one time, after getting married- so that I could enjoy learning & making home. But now I have learnt the art to do it along with my work & I  am enjoying the combo too.

The nature of work however needs a facelift or revamping… It’s a journey but the thinking & evaluation needs to be done consciously now to steer my gears gradually.

& Now I am almost at the end of my stint with this org. I am so eager to see how it feels and at the same time I have a part of me is also worried abt what if i miss my working days here! anyways, looking forward :)

This one, for memory!