Of Simpler times. Simpler Lives.

Friday, February 12, 2016

She stepped out of the hotel and looked up at the sky. A clear cloudless day. The sun was streaming down unflinchingly on the tourists. Big floppy hats, oversized sunglasses and tubes of sunscreen were all she could see on most of the tourists around. This was actually the best time of the year to visit Thailand, when the days were sultry and the nights were cool. It sometimes rained in the evenings but overall there was a pleasant breeze that was present all throughout. Today however, was a different story. She took measured steps towards the gully-like road towards the beach. A few more yards and she would lose the hotel Wi-Fi connection. She sent off a message to her folks, then looked around, ignoring the hawkers peddling their wares. And it was then that this caught her eye.


It instantly transported her to those days when she was a young brat, begging for rides in her great-aunt’s vintage fiat. The military green colour. The hardened seats. The window that you had to struggle with all your might to roll down. But all said and done, the car had that old-worldly charm. Her childhood was filled with many a ride in that car. Summer vacations back then were fun. Her entire brood of cousins would land up at her grandmother’s place and afternoons would be spent at her great-aunts’ place, lying down on the cool floors that were sprinkled with some water, listening to the stories that her aunt told about the golden days when they were kids and how simple life used to be back then. Pestering her aunt, while the latter went on her medical rounds, taking on some house visits, struggling all the while to keep quiet and not create a racket, as bored as she got, for she knew the rewards lay at the end of the ride. Sometimes, it was those orange candies or lemon candies, sometimes it was vanilla ice cream, and if she was really really good, she would be treated with one of those cassata bars. Simple life. Of no expectations and no worries. There was always someone to get her back and people to fall back on. The only biggest worry then was whether the skinned knee would hurt when she had a bath or if she would get the lion’s share of her grand mom’s famous fried potatoes. Simpler times. Simpler lives.

She felt the phone in her hand vibrate. Jolted out of the blue, she saw her dad’s message asking her to be safe and not to roam around after dark. She put the phone in her bag, and walked off to the beach. The sunset was just a few minutes away. It was one of the other things that soothed her mind. The nostalgia coupled with the homesickness brought on by the message heightened the urge to head back home.

She promised to herself. Soon. Soon.

Funny how random things could trigger off hidden memories and calm the mind.

Sometimes it was a stray word, sometimes the tune of a long-forgotten song, and sometimes a vintage car :)


When self-doubt hits!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

I skipped the blogs for the last two days.

I had no specific reason. I am not going to give any excuses or apologize for that. I can vouch for the fact that I am no big writer neither am I so brilliant that people wait to read my blogs. At the most, I am average. Sometimes I write well, sometimes I don’t. So even when I started this blogathon, I had this niggling doubt in mind, that I was not really going to write to my satisfaction. And that doubt was reaffirmed when it was pointed out that I wasn’t doing any favours to my writing by doing something and writing something every day on the lines of “I don’t know what to post”  .. “I have no idea what to write” etc. The old me would have just taken those words to heart and would have just quit. I would have thought to myself, yes they are right! I am not doing this!!

But now, I want to write. I still want to finish this blogathon. I know those two days are going to hang over my head, but I still want to do this. Pig-headedness as some might call it. But I don’t want to quit this. I don’t want to let this go like how I let go of the other things that I started so easily. And every time these days when I get that doubt, there is other quote that comes to mind – “The worst thing you write is better than the best thing you didn’t write!!” – It’s what I posted on the first blog I wrote for the blogathon. That reaffirms me. :D

So today I will share with you something I wrote a long while back. During one of those dark phases. It is a very abstract piece. It’s something that I wrote in a span of a few moments a few years ago. Tidbits that I write, save and don't find the courage to publish! :) I don't really remember what made me write this, probably must be one of those black moods
Here goes…
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“There is a morbid pleasure that we as humans derive in subjecting ourselves to abject misery.
That feeling of martyrdom that elevates in ourselves a feeling of superiority.
The feeling that because we are so miserable; we are in a much loftier position than the rest of the world that is happily cocooned in their contented lives.
After all what do they know of what suffering we have undergone and how it has transformed us into what we are today as opposed to what we were before this so-called misery was thrust upon us. 
Who could say how we might have ended up had we not been through so much!
All of us are broken in that sort of way. Some take a long time to recoup. For some others it’s just a matter of time. And for sometimes very rarely, it is quick and painless when they meet the right person(s). That of course depends on whether you find the right person and you recognize them to be so.
Various moments. Various right kinds of people.
Right for then, at that point of time.
Wrong for other times.
Half the time I think what happens is that you make do with what you have and forget the quest for what you want.
And therein lies the difference.”

On the eve of the Year of the Monkey!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Its day 7 of the month and the 2nd day of the long weekend.

Remember how excited I was about the long weekend coming up and 4 days of holidays and all that, now I am raring to get back to my work! Yes! The same conundrum! The fact that the grass is always greener on the other side.

The thing about staying in a place long enough (in my case – 6+ years) is that you have seen all that there is to be seen, done all that there is to be done and now there is nothing to do. And the other thing about staying in the world’s most expensive city is that the minute you step out of the house you end up spending at the very least 10$ … sometimes there is nothing called self-control. Case in point today evening, I stepped out in the evening with friends and ended up buying a pair of tan coloured pants of which I had no need!! My justification to self was that new clothes I can always end up using! :P Sigh! Yes! I know.

But like I was saying, the thing about staying in a place too long is that everything apart from regular or even impromptu shopping is ‘been there and done that’!! Oh, I can hear you saying that why did you go out of Singapore somewhere. This is just one of those times that none of the plans materialized. Next long weekend, wait and watch this space ;-) I have big plans!! But coming back to Singapore, especially on the eve of Chinese New Year, when everything is closed. 90% of the shops in the mall we went today to were shut! This was at 7 in the evening! And as far as going out and partying is concerned, I would rather end up settling in bed with a nice book and all snuggled up inside my quilt. The days of pulling a night-outer are well past. Oh the perils of growing old ;) :P

And now I have no idea how to end this post. Do I go on and on about how boring Singapore is on long weekends, or do I go on about how things change as soon as you hit the 30s. I think I just got an idea for my next blog post ;)

And as for this one, I think I will end it by wishing you all …..

A VERY HAPPY GONG XI FA CAI AND A HAPPY YEAR OF THE MONKEY! :)

Stay happy and stay blessed! :) :)

Bangalore Naatkal - A review!!!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Today's blog post is a review of 'Bangalore Naatkal' - the remake of the acclaimed 'Bangalore Days'.

Straight up, let me tell you that I have seen Bangalore Days umpteen times. It was one of a kind movie in Malayalam and I regard it to be a classic. So huge huge fan right here. I think that the casting was perfect in that movie and I loved every little bit of it. Every single nuance and dialogue and scene.

When I heard about it being remade in Tamil, I wasn't really very enthused about the entire thing. Why take something already very good and try to make it better. But then I had seen Paapanasam, the remake of Drishyam and I was very impressed. So I thought OK.  This should be good as well.

Unfortunately for me,  and please don't think that I'm being biased here, this one is quite annoying. Quite a lot of things  were annoying.

1) Bobby Simha's wig. And why would they choose him to play Nivin Pauly.  Total miscast right there.

2) Arya's selfie stick. Very very annoying.

3) Lakshmi Rai or Raai however she writes it. The reason that Isha Talwar with Nivin Pauly worked was because of their earlier pairing in Thattathin Marayathu. There was a history there that the director utilised so well. This one is a total total failure. Plus she looks OLD.

4) Basically the only good thing about the movie was Parvathy who reprised her role as RJ  Sarah.

5) Prakash Raj was wasted in his role.

I think I have said enough. I now shudder to think what the state of Premam would be. I hear that Shruti Hassan is playing Malar. I don't think I am going to watch it.

Honestly why twist a tried and tested formula!!!

Now am planning to watch Bangalore Days again to get over this !!!

The weekend is here! What's your plan :)

Friday, February 5, 2016

So every time I get stuck for words, or I have a writer’s block, I end up changing my template. I find that it inspires me to post something on my blog, just to mark the fact that I have changed something on the blog.

Do you like this template?  I also added a small snowflake effect to the blog. Thank you Google! I fiddled about with the code for a while on another template until I didn’t know what I did because every time I visited my blog page, it took me to an entirely new website. I don’t know how I managed doing that. So out went that template. In came this one, simple and easy to use plus I like those circle whirly designs on top. :) It’s supposed to emulate Spring. I think I liked it right there. :)

It’s the long weekend here, celebrating Chinese New Year :) and right now a 4-day long holiday sounds like bliss to me. :) I’m listening to these songs on YouTube while typing this out. I have my favourite songs on loop and on the player currently is “Ethu Kari Raavilum” from the movie Bangalore Days. Speaking of which, the Tamil remake Bangalore Naatkal is out and I am waiting to watch it this weekend as well.

Malayalam movies have come such a long way. For a cinema that used to celebrate tragedy in movies in 80s and early 90s they have sure evolved and become one of the most sought after movie industry now. I think the younger generation is playing its part quite well.

Is this post becoming too random?  I think it’s the effect of a heavy duty dinner of Fried Rice and Gobi Manchurian -  the yummiest combo ever, along with a glass of buttermilk that I just had!! :) Are you going rumbly in the tummy now as well!! ;)

I think I will put my legs up now, maybe stream a classic Malayalam / Tamil movie… I have my tub of ice-cream ready! :)

A classic Friday eve!


What are you doing tonight? :) :)

Spill over from yesterday ...

So I didn’t do a post yesterday. I was held up with a few things and I didn't manage to find any time before the deadline and therefore I have decided to do two posts today. Yay!! I am purely imagining that you all are extremely happy to see two posts from me today! ;) 

And since it doesn’t make sense doing to heavy posts in a day, I have resorted to doing a tag and then I will do my regular post, you know, the usual heavy duty long post :P :P

But here goes for now! :)

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·         Are you named after anyone? 
­    My official name isn’t after anyone in the family, however my birth name (yes! We’re posh like that! We have two names) is after my grand mom.
·         When was the last time you cried? 
­    I think Dec ’15 if I am not wrong. I have this huge phobia against lizards, and my current place of stay is filled with them! And one day, i just got frustrated and ending up choking on my daily call with the parents.
·         Do you have kids? 
­    Nope.
·         If you were another person, would you be a friend of yourself? 
­    Of course yes! I am the best! But honestly, it would be a little difficult considering my mood swings and low scale of social interaction.
·         Do you use sarcasm a lot? 
­    Yes. It helps when the other person understands sarcasm though.
·         Will you ever bungee-jump?
­    Oh boy yes! Been there, done that!! Will do it again!!!
·         What’s your favourite cereal? 
­    I don’t like cereals.
·         What’s the first thing you notice about people? 
­    Their smile and if the smile reaches their eyes.
·         What is your eye colour? 
­    Dark Brown.
·         Scary movie or happy endings? 
­    Happy Endings. I do like scary movies, but it’s a different feeling when a movie ends on a happy note.
·         Favourite smells? 
­    Petrol, kerosene, fresh paint, smell of old and new books, mint!
·         Summer or winter? 
­    Summer.
·         Computer or television? 
­    Computer. I don’t watch TV all that much.
·         What’s the furthest you’ve ever been from home? 
­    Where I am right now. Sing Sing Singapore.
·         Do you have any special talents? 
­    I like to think I am a good dancer and an average writer.
·         Where were you born? 
­    Tamilnadu.
·         What are your hobbies? 
­    Reading. Dancing. Writing.
·         Do you have any pets? 
­    No. I had one and he passed away. I am planning on adopting a pup soon.
·         Favourite movie? 
­    Those are way too long to list here.
·         Do you have any siblings? 
­    Yes. One younger brother.
·         What do you want to be when you grow up? 
­   I don’t want to grow up. I really don’t. Quite the odd thing to say when you’re in your 30s huh!!

So that’s that. The post for yesterday. Yes, I know I took the easy way out. And did the tag instead of an actual post. I will try and post a proper post from now on.

Deal. Ok? Ok. 

I want to title this as 'An Ode to something...' But I can't think of anything!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

I was browsing through my feed reader a little while ago, looking for ideas on blog posts. I came across a post on social networking sites. Now this is a subject that I haven't really touched upon in this blog. Then I realized that I did have something to talk about it.  

Thanks to the usage of WhatsApp and Facebook and other social media sites, I have gotten in touch with a whole lot of my old friends and classmates and such. And when I say gotten back in touch, I mean accepted the friend requests, sent a few friend requests because we had more than a reasonable number of mutual friends, wished them on Facebook on their birthdays and I am a part of the school / college WhatsApp groups.

I’ll be honest. When I started getting friend requests from old school mates and classmates, I was thrilled and surprised. Thrilled because oh now I could go through their photos and see how much has changed from the days I knew them, and surprised because well, I didn’t really think they would remember me or who I was after all these years. Let’s face it, back in school, I mean my 10th and 12th schooling I was a nondescript kid. I kept to myself, spoke when I was spoken to, took part in dance events, didn’t really hang out with the popular kids, basically kept a low profile. I was never comfortable in large groups, I never spoke to everyone and anyone and I tend to get claustrophobic just thinking about them large groups. So when Facebook was starting to get really popular, it was all about how many people you could track down, add, increase the friends count etc etc, leave alone whether you actually recognized the person from their profile. I think that for some people it still holds true. Frankly it takes me a while to figure out who the person who sent me the friend request sometimes is, and that is after a lot of prodding, nudging, stalking their profile for clues or the worst case, asking one of the common friends. Which I do know is really bad. I am sorry about it but that’s the truth. It has been a little more than 15 years since I passed my boards and more than 10 years since my graduation. In this last decade, after I have passed out of my school and college for graduation, I haven’t ever been back to my alma mater. Not for any events, not for reunions, not even to just visit and stop by and admire the fa├žade.

The same holds true for my MBA. I passed out of MBA 9 years ago. I actually liked that place. But I hated it too. I shared a love-hate relationship with the place. No not with the people. But the place brought out the worst in me. It turned me into this girl with a pseudo-attitude and a penchant for drama and someone who thrives on the dynamics of other people around me. I hated myself when I was there and when I left the place, moved to take up my job, it was with a sense of relief. And over the years, I have come to realize that I don’t miss it. I never felt connected to the place there. Much as I never felt connected to any of my places of education. 

So when I read posts about how much people missed the school / college, the canteen / hostel, or how they walked over the narrow paths, the grass-filled grounds etc, I cannot for the life of me relate to it. I didn’t see what the connection was. I didn’t miss the places. I didn’t even sometimes recollect who or what they were talking about. I did miss a few people whom I had met there, sure, but those that I missed, I have made it a point to keep in touch with them. The others I decided that I would let them be. As they let me be.

And I mean no offence here to anyone. Not to my alma maters nor to my school / class mates. These people have been a huge part of my formative years and they have played a humongous role in shaping me up to be the person I am.

And this is the person I am today.

And so on this note, a few weeks back I cleared up my friends list, removed a few people from it that I didn’t recognize, exited out of a few WhatsApp groups and basically did a bit of cleaning up and organizing. I am sure all of you must have done it at some point or the other. I think the exit out of the WhatsApp groups may have ruffled a few feathers for a few minutes but honestly I am sure, no one really even feels bad about it.

In any case, a bit of spring cleaning is good and it fills you with a new purpose. Makes you feel like that you have taken control of your life, for about 5 minutes :P
If any of my friends, college or school or even old work colleagues are reading this, and you feel offended for some reason, please do understand that it is nothing personal. It’s just the way I am wired now.

I have stopped trying to please people for the sake of it. I have stopped trying to fit in. I have stopped trying to make people like me. If they like me for who I am, good, if they don’t, too bad, I can’t do anything about it. I still do try and change some peoples’ opinions about me, but I have stopped trying to shove it down their throats and make a point out of it.
I have realized that I am like this. And I like me like this. 
Sometimes, growing old does have its moments! ;) 

The struggle to persevere!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Day 2 and am wracking my brains on what to write. I know it’s too soon, but I totally understand how hard it is to write something and publish it on a daily basis. If I sound like a crib-pot, I am sorry but that’s not what I want this to come across as.

I have already discarded three topics, and shut down the drafts that I started penning on them. I have a few ideas that I really do want to write about, but somehow for some reason none of them are striking quite the right chord today. And now as I see the clock ticking towards the midnight deadline, I can feel the old stress creeping up. :) I promised myself that I wouldn’t get stressed for something as trivial as this, but I do need to pen down something for myself more than anything else and that’s when I realize that this isn’t as trivial as I thought it to be.

I do make it sound like a big deal, huh! :) But of course IT IS A BIG DEAL, for me!

At the beginning of the year, I made a bucket list of sorts. :) things that I wanted to accomplish this year. I think the very many trips last year had something to do with it. But I figured all is well, it’s always good to have something listed down and I have very specific goals that I want to complete this year. Some are quite simple like starting to read a new author, others not so much for eg: learning to swim!!

This blogathon is one of the things on that bucket list.

And as the years catch up on me, I find that its becoming very very hard to let go of things as easily as I could. There’s that dull prick inside of me that keeps telling me that I gave up too easily too soon. Of course, along with many things that have changed within me, this one has gotten stronger – when something means a lot to me, I don’t really give up on it, I keep coming back to it, one way or the other holding and not really letting go! :)

It makes me realize how much has changed within me over the past few years. Of how I am no longer the person I used to be. Of how my priorities have changed. Of how right now I am craving to hold on to my roots and my upbringing in a weird way that’s almost laughable. But that’s a post for another day, people!

For now, all I want to say is that, I will persevere. This is more a note to myself than to anyone else there, but it does make it sound very official and all that, now that it’s up on the blog for the entire world to see! Amps up the pressure I tell you, which is also a good thing! :)

And now for some weird reason, I have that Hum Honge Kamyaab song running in my head!

Oh well! :P

Until tomorrow... Peace out! :)

As far as it goes ...

Monday, February 1, 2016

There are these very few times this undeniable urge to write strikes me! Like this itch that will not go until I spill out what is in my mind.
It’s probably because of all the blog posts that I read last month and the blogathon that took place in Jan 2016. Which led me to think that I should probably do one too!! Like maybe commemorate a decade of blogging. I mean, I should have just done one along with the rest of the world last month, but the bright idea didn’t strike me until a little late into the month and therefore the spill-over into the second month of this year... I actually even thought that I should wait until September, you know the month I started blogging back in 2006. Cheesy much? :) But who has that much patience!! :) Definitely not me. :) And therefore I preponed it to this month. Also lesser number of days in Feb and all that. ;)
The funny part about this is that I do not have anything to say most of the time. Not for today, not for this week and most certainly not for this entire month. I figured I could cross that bridge when I come to it! ;). However, the even funnier part is I am the most comfortable when it comes to writing down stuff than talking it out. I have no idea why. I simply see it more coherently and clearly, when I am writing it down.
As the years roll by, I realize that I have started giving writing as much importance as I give dancing. The fact that I don’t do both as much as I would like to is something that makes me feel immensely guilty. In fact, I didn’t really realize how much I craved putting words to my thoughts until a few weeks ago when I was really stressed and I just went and got myself a notebook and pen – an impulse buy! It was when I started penning into that, I realized how much of peace it brought me.

For all that happens and has happened, I don’t know if I have started something yet again, that I cannot finish. Remember the 100 happy days’ fiasco. But right now, the important thing to me is that I have started this. I’ll let it go as long as it does. No pressure. No compulsions. Just the need to keep writing.
People unwind in different ways … vent out their emotions in various ways.
Some sleep. Some drink. Some go wild. Some go quiet. Some start to shout. And some others cry.
Me – I look for myself, I find myself and I lose myself in words. 
Sometimes my own, sometimes someone else’s.
 
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