5 Black Things that I want.

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Black is a forbidden color in my family. As a child I was never allowed to wear black in festivals and functions. It is considered a sad inauspicious color. In my mums language “It spells doom” ¬†ūüėÄ ¬†I have never been allowed to wear it. So for me it has always been a coveted color. The times that i have thrown tantrums and rebelled for that perfect black dress…… only to be allowed a very dark blue…… but never black.

After I got married I have wanted to change things but never really got around to getting the “black dress” as I never really had a place to wear it. My mum and in laws would have banned me at any social occasion. I found it a very trivial topic to cause grief so it is still on my wish list…… since for like “forever”…… Hence my first really coveted Black thing would be a black dress.

The second is really easy. Black Stilettos to go with that perfect black dress. I have never had really really high stilettos. The max that I could get into were 4 inch pumps. Stilettos are really sexy stuff especially the Jimmy Choo ones. I’ve had my eye on the one that I want since a very long time.

The third black thing is a black box. I have wanted a black box for my camera and photography equipment since a very long time. Actually I think that it would top my black list. Especially in monsoons when the humidity is very high I live on the edge wondering what happens to my lenses and mount. A black box would really put my fears at rest. At other times I live in fear that all my photography equipment and external hard disks would get a  fungal attack.

The fourth black item on my list is black roses. I really really want to photograph black roses. I have never seen them in real and quite frankly I don’t think they exist…… but I am pretty sure that I could photoshop some dark red roses to black ones. I want to take pictures of fully bloomed dark black roses with lovely whorls of glossy black petals. Of late i have been totally enamored with black and white photography and the chance to photograph black roses has been a dream.

The thing about black and white photography is that it bares the skeleton of the photograph with out the frills of color only to reveal the stark beauty of the subject and virtually no photoshop involved. I have looked long for the really dark red roses at the florist only to be grossly disappointed. In the end I have planted my own. The ones at the florist gave me¬†a grey touch.¬†They aren’t black enough.¬†I have the first batch of buds come and I took some shots to confirm that I got the color right. Now all I have to do is wait for them to fully bloom and hope that the rose doesn’t lose the color else I am back to my list. (The pics of the bud that I posted at the start of the post are the ones that I took today)

The fifth and last black item on my list is of course the “coveted by all” black diamond ūüėÄ ¬†ūüėÄ ¬†ūüėÄ ¬†After all diamonds are a girls best friend. It is definitely the most must have on my list or may be it is the black box which i need so badly………. Needs and wants…….Well this is gonna take “forever” to decide !!!

This post is a part of #WhatTheBlack activity at BlogAdda.com

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If you had the power to get somewhere where would you go right now?

Memories are tricky things. Bad memories¬†can take us to a place where we are uncomfortable and unsafe…… ¬†whereas a Good and Beautiful memory can take us to a place where we not only feel safe but also it is something that stands out in the course of our life.

In my case some of my best memories are at the fort of Sinhagad, ¬†in the outskirts of ¬†Pune. ¬†The winding lanes leading to the fort are lined with little yellow and orange wild flowers. So much that from far it looks like a carpet of yellow and orange. The low clouds touch your hair as you drive up the lanes. The cold wet feeling of having them over your face ¬†is a wonderful feeling. Then comes the lovely trek up the fort…… Yeah it is tiring but reaching on top is worth every drop of sweat. By the time you are on the top you have the blood pounding in your ears. You stop awhile to catch your breath and take a small break and drink the cool clear water from the well and then look down to the beauty of the city way below you.

Everything seems so small and inconsequential at that moment. No problem or worry seems too big that it cant be handled. You feel invincible…… you can do anything. The moment of peace envelops you and you feel calm. Thats the feeling everytime…… every single time.

That moment when all the sounds in your mind stop and you can not really speaking hear anything, is what I try to capture. I dont really have any thoughts passing through my mind at that moment….. just a sense of stillness. Nothing seems to matter at that moment. I get that feeling every single time I have been there.

I havent been to sinhagad in a very long time now…… almost a decade plus……. now that I¬†go back and calculate. Guess I have to rectify that before long. ¬†With the industrialisation and IT boom in my city there has been a total geographic and demographic change in the city and the outlook of the people of the city. I doubt whether things are still the same….. or is it just me who has gotten older, bitter and disillusioned.

Sinhagad has been and will be for more years than any person living right now on earth. ¬†Only people change around it. ¬†A new generation looking for peace and solace like I did years before…… I hope they find it as I did and still do!!!

 

 

Fusion music

I love music of any kind and creed no language barriers. I am especially partial to Indian folk. I simply love folk. Bengali folk is my favorite: The bhatialis and Bouls. The coke studio @ MTV is something that was probably made for the likes of me. Especially this fusion number…… I have always been a fan of bihu and Bhupen Hazarika but this song has made me a total fan of Khagen Gogoi as well. I have no idea what he is singing about but the music is wonderful!!! It feels like the fresh wind from the hills. It is sooo soft with no edges it is fluid!!! soft smooth and extremely curvy no bones!!! The sounds of drums with dhol and kartal flute and gogona. Simply mind blowing !!!! You can almost see the women dancing the bihu to this number!!!

The Bhatiali fusion with Majhi re was also good but could have been better!!! The others were also good…… also liked the fusion of qawwali but this was my favoritest!!! I watched the others tapped feet on some but with this one I danced!!!

Carpet and mask cleaning.

Carpets are one of the best things invented by man. Since carpets you dont really need to have very good flooring for your home for it to look good. You just throw in a carpet. Carpets come wide varieties: the silk ones, the woolen ones, the plastic ones, or simple cotton ones, or the more expensive persian ones.

It takes a very long time and thought to choose the right carpet for your home. You not only have to take into account the aesthetic tastes of all the family members but also the best thing that you can easily maintain which also takes least maintenance. The best thing about having a carpet is that you dont really need to clean your house on a daily basis. You just as in the proverb push things under the carpet and your house looks beautiful.

The carpet therefore not only minimises the everyday hassle of cleaning the house and making it look beautiful it is also a store room for a lot of dust and germs and lots of other bad stuff that you keep putting on your to do list to clean up…… eventually….. Some day!!! Until members of your family eventually start having problems with your precious carpet. You either wait for your customary spring cleaning or just a quick dust or a quick surface vaccuum which does eliminate the dust from the surface but the ones that have penetrated deep into the carpet stay right there….. they just stay there and slowly you have colonies of germs in your home. Ultimately that one precious carpet renders your whole home unhygienic and even if you throw away the carpet the damage done to your entire home is already done and you really cant undo that.

Human beings do the same things with masks that they wear to sometimes cover their true emotions/nature, sometimes to be amiable to masses around you, and sometimes to just avoid controversies, sometimes just for the heck of it so that nobody around your bothers you and peace reigns. Evenutally the spring cleaning dwindles down to the time when you hardly address your problems and either postpone it or just dont give any credit to it. Until your psychological problems start manifesting itself physically and you just have to address them or face the fear of a complete breakdown.

The edge is so sharp that you really cant not cut yourself and even if you actually do address them you really have to face so much that rediscovering yourself itself is an effort because until then you will have changed and you have a serious identity crisis. You cant start afresh by not cleaning up the already accumulated dirt. The forgotten dirt always catches up.

Rediscovering yourself is a pain, a big time effort. What you find in the end might scare you to death. It requires hell of a lot of patience and super human support from the masses around you. One mistake in judging what you are could crumble the whole carpeted person up totally. The person becomes so sensitive to judgments that even a judgemental eye could do a lot of damage and the self confidence really really needs to be worked upon. What you need at these times is unconditional love and support.

The most important lesson that I learnt of it is that I really have to understand my limitations at all times and whatever be the case I really have to be happy with what I really am……. irrespective of any person’s views about me. I actually discovered that: I am a nice person……. contrary to what I believed all these years and what others made me believe all these years. I hate being a phoenix every few years but this time I realised that when it is dark that is only me to hold my own hand though i had hubby’s voice directing me to where i could go. Even then the choice was mine as to where I went. I hit my back to the wall….. atleast what i thought was a wall….. I can only go forward now. I wont use a carpet again….. atleast that is my conviction today…… people can accept me as I am or go to hell!!!

Me’s back!!!

I finally returned home. I am glad. Singapore is a fabulous place to live in BUT something really strange happened when the flight took off from Singapore I looked at hubs and said: “I already forgot Singapore”. He thought I was strange and looked at me as though i had developed horns but when we landed at Mumbai, he realised what i meant. It felt as if i had never left. Its good to be home at last.

Coming home meant getting pampered fullto, settling down, and this you wont believe: eating begun bhajas EVERYDAY since i came. It is like coming to heaven…….. although the heaven is really short……. no grossly short of water supply. As they say kisiko mukkamil jahan nahi milta…… kiskiko pani to kisiko begun bhaja nahi milta!!! I have settled with the latter and am mighty pleased with my choice. I am totally into the enjoy it till it lasts kind of thing who knows where i have to go next. Specially with hubby playing passport passport and visa visa all over again. I don’t even want to know where when etc etc. When i go I will go till then it is Begun bhaja festival.

Spending some real quality time with my nieces. All these years I came and left and again came and left never really talking to them. This is the first time i came and talked unlike the other times when i came, played Santa, gave gift, got hug, and left. This time I got some real OMG stories. It kind of left me open mouthed…… really big time open mouthed and hubby grinning like a Cheshire cat…… he looks like garfield these days especially when he looks at me.

I have always been proud of the fact that my school though it did not produce Einsteins, it did produce some real good people and though our teachers were not the best they were ok. Specially with regard to dabbas!!! All through my tenure in school, I have never ever eaten anybody’s tiffin. I always stuck to what my ma gave me for lunch and ate just that, hubs on the other hand can write a whole dissertation with detailed analysis on who brought what in the tiffins and also when and why. Sometimes the details he goes into tiffins is totally astonishing!!!!

During the rains, to prevent the kids from getting wet and playing in the rain my school has this policy of all the kids eating their food in class at their desk and a particular teacher eating with them so that they can be monitored. My niece comes up with this incident that a certain teacher at her school (incidently she taught me as well as my older two sisters) everyday brought an empty tiffin box and then asked the students to share their food with her. She then went round and took whatever she liked from the students tiffin and ate it. She is especially partial to sweets. So if the mother has packed a pastry for her daughter, the daughter never got to eat it. In some cases the daughter also goes hungry unless her friends have shared their food with her. The teacher meticulously shortlists the tiffins she likes and those kids are at her brunt everyday. “XYZ what did your mother give you today?” So much that my niece says that she carries two tiffins and she has her favorite food in the short break and the other tiffin with not so favorite food in the lunch break which she can display to the teacher.

She said she had gone hungry many days after which my sister has started packing not-so-interesting food for her. I was totally open mouthed after listening to this story with popping eyes et al. Hubby on the other hand is totally motivated and is seriously considering a career change. So these days the kids are totally terrified when the said teacher walks in during the lunch break……

Gawwwd how disgusting can a teacher get!!! I am still wondering whether this is a perk that teachers get for teaching or if teachers salaries are getting really low or this particular teacher is getting the kids to diet or her favorite movie is bhootnath and she is taking the movie really really seriously or it is a case of a really really hungry teacher or she is trying to teach the kids something…….. I wonder what that is???………. still wondering!!!!!

When I was ten and six

Lately all the posts in my blog have become nothing short of emotional atyachaar…. so I took a cue from NaBloPo and its daily topics for the month of June and this is the best topic that I could think of. If you could go back in time and meet your 16-year old self, what three things would you tell yourself?

If I had to go back in time and meet my 16-year-old¬†self….. I would have been in the twelfth standard in St Mira’s College….. almost a purani¬†jeans and guitar moment. Those days life was FULL up to the brim and very very interesting…. too interesting if I look at it from my Ma’s point of view.

At sixteen Life had:

Too much ambition.

New found freedom.

Lots and lots of laughter and giggling.

Experimenting with EVERYTHING.

Living and sleeping in jeans and skirts and wearing Dad’s shirts….. especially the ones he ironed the night before to wear to work….. which he absolutely hated!!!

It was the time for: Friends, making groups….. breaking them. Talking about boys all the day until you almost puked….. yeah that much….. and I did puke at the end of the day…… Each person writing a dissertation on their current love and the loss of past love!!! Man it changed very often…… used to have a hard time keeping track of everybody’s……. Flavour of the month.

Sixteen was also the era of getting proposed to almost every day with flowers, letters written in blood or maybe red ink, teddies¬†and a wide paraphernalia of things…… usually fighting back…… slapping….. beating them……. eating flowers and becoming a walking talking paper shredder machine, specialising in shredding letters and cards into very very tiny minute particles and then blowing them in the air. Believe me the whole experience was quite traumatic causing me to stay indoors at home for days ultimately being thrown out by dad.

Bunking college and spending days in college canteen gorging on vada pavs¬†and vada sambars or experimenting with henna designs on each other’s palms and hair styles (mine was a ladies college)

First time copying from chits in the surprise (or surprise for us as we were busy bunking) tutorials and then throwing shoes out of the window and then jumping off the window to catch the train….. the shoes first because that’s where the chits were. Using the window more than the door to leave the class.

Sitting in the last bench in class and singing songs or writing poetry or sketching and giving lots and lots of grief to the teachers.

Spending the whole of sanctuary sketching on each other’s palms or tying up two random girls’ dupatta with each other or braiding their hair together or writing notes to each other with the background music of Keshava¬†Madhava¬†or aye¬†malik¬†tere bande hum.

Bunking classes and running in the tracks to catch the 245 local and then alighting at Shivajinagar and then taking the return local back to Pune at 330 and then finally going home in the same local at 450…… our scheduled time.

It was also my first exposure to the world of electronics and telecommunication. My friend’s pa had banned her from making phone calls so we used to join wires and then make calls and then again replace the phone to its broken self. There were these one rupee telephone booths at Pune station which often malfunctioned and we could make free calls for hours….. we did not even have to insert a coin. It was like our own private hotline. Very often we used to have some person threatening another on the phone next to us…… usually had to with some girl. We also gave a lot of blank calls to all our dushman….. and sometimes to some of our could-be friends as well.

At 16 padyatra¬†was the call of the day…… I walked and walked and walked and walked First from home to Khadki¬†station then Pune station via tracks to Koregaon¬†Park…. to college then to work in Camp and then from Camp to Pune station and since I was in marketing all over again everywhere. Considering that pocket-money¬†was so less, auto rickshaws was a status symbol something I could not afford.

Covering our faces while going to the theatres to catch the movies…… lest someone recognised us.

At 16 I had my first job….. financial independence.

First love……. first break-up…… first heart-break!!!!

Read books and more books and lots more after that….. all kinds of them……. Sometimes even read more than two a day. Read my first and last science fiction and totally hated it.

16 was also the time for serious studying…… slaving over economics and accountancy…… what saved the day for me was Subodh classes’ 99 test series and French and English. I wouldn’t have scored above average without these factors.

At 16 studying was usually done in Pune University main building or lawns or in the Sanskrit section because nobody went there those days. My home would be full of my sister’s friends and lots of clutter for her impending wedding causing havoc in my study pattern eventually started studying with the radio in full blast.

16 was also the first time I went to sinhagad for the first time and instantly fell in love with it.

Age 16 witnessed my oldest sister’s wedding….. my first experience at event management….. loved every moment of it….. also witnessed a Bengali wedding for the first time in my life.

Me having some or the other issues and refusing to go back to college or stepping our of home and dad threatening me with dire consequences and repeatedly telling me the importance of education and importance of career.

16 was rebelling……. rebelling against everything and anything that came before me. Lots of screaming and shouting at home……. Ma and Pa getting lots and lots of grey hair. The only thing I spoke at home were: I don’t know, I didn’t do it, I cant do it, I wont do it, I am hungry…… anything else and Ma and Pa would have a heart attack. Eventually Ma started using reverse psychology to get me to do things.

16 was sleeping lots and lots of sleeping so much that Ma had to throw me out of the bed each day and Dad gave me a lecture on sleeping each and every waking hour even when I was awake eventually I decided if I had to take it, I might as well do the bad deed.

16 was also the time when Ma scrutinised each and every male friend of mine and froze most of them. Every Sunday along with the oil head massage I also had to listen to Ma’s speech on the virtue of women…… typical Sulochana¬†and Nirupa Roy style…… well it worked….. it kept me straight.

16 was not worrying about weight and eating everything and doing everything.

If I had to go back and tell something to myself it would be……. Great going…… You re the best!!!!

I wouldn’t want to change a thing or do anything any differently for those days then made me what I am now and waise¬†bhi do sixteen year olds even listen???

Kaaash……. Only IF

Don’t you wish for things……. sometimes impossible but you keep hoping that only if….. I do that very often. I keep hoping for things impossible. I am not going to talk about macro stuff like world peace or anything or the sort……. that I think is tooooo impossible. I am talking about the very minuscule atomic world that is mine and mine only.

People who have read my posts earlier will know what is coming……. I wish I had wings. My school friends had a get together this weekend and this is the first time that I am missing. I sooooo miss not meeting them. Every time we meet we have a blast. The plus thing of the whole occasion is that most of us don’t have any hang-ups or show offs or anything of the sort. It is just all of us meeting up to have a great time and just having a blast. Just unadulterated fun!!!!

Ever since the first meet, I keep looking forward to these get togethers. What makes this special is the bond we have. Though we don’t keep in touch with each other over long periods…… though we come from different fields, the fact that we studied in the same school for 12 years makes the bond very special. The values imbibed into us by the nuns of the school have stayed with each one of us and underneath all of it we are still the same we were years back in school though one sentiment that we all have in common is that…… we are all glad that school is over.

The picture that has been coming to my mind over and over again are of the pink flamingos……. In my blog that is the most cliched of all things but I cant help it.

The whole of last week the Kash….. Only IF sentiment was for samosas and jalebis and aloo chaat and tamrind chutney and pani puri. This is something so common in India available in just about every nukkad but here it takes two train changes and loads and loads of walking to eat just one of these. The frustration grew so much that I was ultimately on the verge of actually making it…… you have no idea what amount of frustration caused it especially because I don’t like cooking and for God’s sake……. who makes samosas at home and that too for two people???? you just pop into a halwai and get two of them.

I even tried the local eateries here which sell everything from frog legs to everything……. I have been quite terrified of these places lest I would end up eating something like frog leg pakoda or cockroach/grasshopper fritters!!!!! ultimately hubbzzzz tired of the pining changed the trains and did the walking and got me the whole assortment from sarvanna bhavan. I also got two dabbas of rasgolla and gulab jamun. But the interim period was crazy……. I could visualise samosas everywhere. I haven’t yet got the jalebi and chaat but the craving has gone!!!

The people here are very health conscious that’s really good but kya kare I cant drink unsweetened and unflavored soy milk and need my dose of sugar and boiled CTC tea. The sugar here is not sweet and when i first came here i used four packs of earl grey tea and six satches of sugar for one cup of tea….. phir bhi no taste…… and the coffee……. kya batau……. allah!!!! khud samaj jao. I went off the coffee and the tea for a whole month until i finally found my cherished red label CTC tea.

My cousin who drinks only Darjeeling and green tea says that CTC is the worst kind of tea and tea should not be boiled……. boiling makes it acidic and bad for health. I tried her version of tea and believe me I would rather go off it that have that pitiable concoction of flavoured hot water.

Coming back to the only IF…… Ma had the annual Akshay tritiya function and as usual I missed it. My whole family and mum dad’s friends were there. A gala affair. At times such as these I wish I had wings so I could go home just for the moment and then come back to my life. Just another Only IF……….. The feeling is so great sometimes that I think that if I just move my arms I will start flying…….

People say the mind can travel places and people can actually see happenings of far away places….. Maaannn ki ankhen. I can think of a lot of jokes on this one. I wonder whether something like this can actually happen…… maybe that is the next best alternative……. after all I cant grow wings…… tooo late……. maybe next time!!!! but after having seen these beauties close upfront…… I honestly wish I was a flamingo…….. but they have very bad voices…….. screeching, shrill very ear piercing voices BUT they have wings!!!! lovely pink wings!!!……… I should stick to the mannn ki ankhen!!!!!

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