It’s been so long

This blog has been so dead lately, I feel guilty. So many thoughts swim in my mind but nothing translates to words. Then I saw this on The Girl Next Door’s blog and this seemed the perfect way to awaken my blog from hibernation!

Here it goes..

  1. Tell me something about you that most people don’t know.
    I talk to myself. (Sheesh)
  2. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?
    Eliminate rape.
  3. Do you like to dance?
    Oh yes! Have always loved garba and Bollywood. Lately I have taken a fancy to Zumba.
  4. Would you ever consider living abroad?
    Well, I do live abroad right now.
  5. Does your name make any interesting anagrams?
    Nope. It’s too small and common for that.
  6. Who made the last incoming call on your phone?
    At. Asking me to come and pick him up from work. We are sharing a car right now. So I play the driver most times.
  7. What is the last thing you downloaded onto your computer?
    I downloaded Tera Zikr from Guzaarish. It’s a lovely, mesmerizing song.
  8. Last time you swam in a pool?
    I played with water in my cousin’s pool 3 weeks back. I can’t swim!
  9. Type of music you like most?
    Anything that is melodious, peppy and/or soulful.
  10. Type of music you dislike most?
    Rock music.
  11. Are you listening to music right now?
    Yes! I am ALWAYS listening to music. Right now, its Shikayatien from Lootera. I love this album.
  12. What color is your bedroom carpet?
    The flooring of whole house is covered in brown carpet like all apartments in US.
  13. If you could change something about your home, without worry about expense or mess, what would you do?
    Make every room color themed. Get in co-ordinated furniture. Lot of colourful furnishings. Create a magical garden.
  14. What was the last thing you bought?
    Groceries from Indian store. A rush-rush affair after college.
  15. Have you ever ridden on a motorbike?
    No. Have attempted once. Was a total failure.
  16. Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving?
    Never! I am too scared for those.
  17. Do you have a garden?
    Oh yes! A small balcony garden created very lovingly by me.
  18. Do you really know all the words to your national anthem?
    Err. Not really.
  19. What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning?
    I wish I could sleep more!
  20. If you could eat lunch with one famous person, who would it be?
    Salman Khan. Isn’t that obvious?
  21. Who sent the last text message you received?
    My cousin who lives in the same city. Yeah, the same one with the pool.
  22. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?
    Macy’s! Clothes, shoes, kitchen and dining ware, home decor. Everything there is so pretty.
  23. What time is bed time?
    Between 11 pm and 12:30 am. I know. Ridiculous. I blame it on US-India time difference.
  24. Have you ever been in a beauty pageant?
    Ha! No way!
  25. How many tattoos do you have?
  26. If you don’t have any, have you ever thought of getting one?
    No way. It’s too painful.
  27. What did you do for your last birthday?
    Returned from a wonderful vacation to Mexico the night before. Attended classes at college on my birthday and took chocolates for classmates.
  28. Do you carry a donor card?
  29. What time do you get up?
    8:30 am… after a lot of self struggle. Don’t ask me about weekends.
  30. What inspires you?
    People who give and receive a lot of love. People who have a great healthy attitude. People who make their passions big.

Wow. It’s always fun talking about yourself, no?


Books (My Loves: I)

I’d always prefer reading to watching a movie. There are so many good movies adapted from bestselling novels but I am not interested in watching them. I like reading. Even if I do watch the movie (like the HP series, Bridget Jones Diary, Confessions of a shopaholic), I do that after I’ve relished the book. And when people discuss the movie and say ‘It was fantastic’, I go all ‘Oh, they’ve changed the entire original story. The book is much better’, thus snubbing poor, harmless movie lovers.

I have 2 very good friends who are movie buffs. No, they do not just watch all the latest movies that come in theatres. They watch classics. Award winning movies. Really well made movies. That kind of a thing. But no, I haven’t developed any interest whatsoever and feel visibly bored when discussion on movies is happening around me. For some reason, I am averse to Hollywood movies, however novel they may be (unless they are animated). It could be that I don’t relate to them and relate more to colourful Bollywood movies because of my love for Saris or dance numbers like Munni Badnaam and Tu Cheez Badi Hai Mastor Indian kitsch or the silliness of funny Indian movies.

No. My passion remains reading. Why I came up with this out of the blue is because I have been on a reading marathon since the last 3 days. 3 books (e-books) finished in 3 days straight. I will also commit irreverence and say that I read 2 books at work. And once I started reading books of my favourite genres (ie, chick lit and detective), I had no control over myself and read till the end. And I am craving for more. I read into the silence of the night and the muffled howl of cold wind and melodious sound of wind chimes gave me company. Felt like time had stopped. I was in no hurry. I had all the time in the world. I felt totally at ease. And I didn’t want the night to end.

This reminded me of my school days – the golden era sans internet, Gtalk, Blackberry, pending bills and marriage issues. My sister and I have been avid readers since childhood because of presence of grandparents, who were always found with a book in their hands, at home. Good influence, I must say. We stayed in a small town in Gujarat where our school and its library were like a diamond in a coal mine. I remember flocking into the library in breaks between classes. We had the advantage of borrowing books during vacations too on our Mother’s name who is still a teacher there. How delighted we used to be when we came back from school armed with books, usually detective. We carried the books to Bombay during vacations to our Nana’splace. Crossword store was like heaven and we usually came back with 10 books per visit.

We started with Enid Blyton. Her ‘Magic Of The Faraway Tree’ and ‘4’o Clock Tales’ made us believe in magic. We spent summer vacations lurking in Nana’sgarden hoping to find a scared pixie or a lost fairy crying because a wicked goblin stole her tiara. We moved on to Famous Five. We loved their adventures on the secret island, their night sneak outs and ability to expose scandalous men. Next came Nancy Drew – the best teen detective in the world! She became my idol – what with driving a car, having a handsome boyfriend, getting run over by cars with mud-patted number plates, opening locks with her lock-picking kit & still managing to look good. I wanted to be like her!

The world then opened to a more adult crime scene – Perry Mason murder cases. No handsome boys or pretty girls. Plain blood, murders and cruel intentions. We became addicted to this series written by Erle Stanley Gardner. Day and night, we had our faces buried in these books much to Mother’s irritation. But how could we put down novels so full of thrill, suspense and the clever tactics of the smart Perry Mason?

John Grisham. Ken Follet and Jeffery Archer found their place too, on my bedside table.

After a lull of a couple of years, when I totally stopped reading, I was introduced to a more sassy, witty and colourful world of chick-lits. There has been no looking back hence. I’ve stuck to it. Sophie Kinsella is undoubtedly my favourite author, followed by Meg Cabot, Emily Giffin and Jane Green. The fact that I was around 26 that time was a major reason why I became addicted to chick-lit. The stories could possibly be my own stories (except that there is no Luke Brandon or Cal Langdon in my life even today – at 29). But you get the picture.

I still try to move my eyes away from chick lit to look at other bestsellers but the books that get me stuck to my seat for hours or get me forget the rest of the world belong to the chick lit genre.

Goodreadshas got me hooked on to it. I browse through the ocean of books – BOOKS! – out there and want to read all. My To-Read list is increasing every day. Those who read will know what kind of a dream world it is. What it feels like to feel the characters coming true. Why it feels that you have become friends with the characters.

Nona Merah writes a blog post about what it’s like to date a girl who reads.

So true. I can relate to it so well.

10 Day You Challenge–9 Loves

Hhmm. So I have successfully revealed my darker side by disclosing some secretsabout me. Thank God, the game asks for only 10 secrets or I would have managed to come into several black lists and it would also have become dangerous to share my blog with people I know. Can secrets be good? Why would you hide something if it is good? And then it will no longer remain a secret, right? Secrets are always bad; something that you don’t want the world to know.

Let’s write about some good stuff. The 9 loves of my life. Now this is going to be difficult. How can one choose just9?

Here it goes:

1. Chocolates: Wait. I’ll call it, food. I am a foodie and can munch on almost anything. Food makes me greedy and weak. I cannot resist most food items – milkshakes, spring rolls, mangoes, chicken, pastries or biscuits. Almost everything. I get strong cravings for chocolates, spicy non vegetarian food and coffee. I am already drooling.

2. Aditi: She is my 14 year old cousin. Read all about her here. I can go on and on about her. To sum it up, she is one of the most special people in my life because of the unique bond that we have developed over the last 10 years.

3. Music: I am crazy about music. A wide range of music. I put on music even before brushing teeth in the morning. I am THAT crazy. I dance at my work desk when I listen to Tai Tai Phis on my Ipod. I dance in the car when I am listening to Lady Gaga’s Monster. I do the catwalk when I listen to Mar jawaan. Music is in my heart and soul.

4. Writing: I have always used writing as a method of venting out. I wrote how my day went. I wrote about my deepest fears and dreams. Then I wrote stories. Stories my imaginative mind weaved for me. I wrote from the heart. And still do.

5. Walking: I prefer walking to talking the car. Anyway. I look for ways to ditch the car and walk. I can walk, walk, walk.

6. Travel: Wow. The very prospect of travel has made me ecstatic in the past. The first seed of the idea usually leads to very enthusiastic planning and preparation involving my entire social circle. It is my dream to see the world. Though I have a long way to go, I feel proud of having travelled to several places on my own.

7. Gladiator Sandals: I have developed a recent liking towards ankle length gladiator sandals. As opposed to stilettos, which are too feminine, or sneakers, which are too casual, I think gladiators are smart and sexy. My subconscious love for them has already earned me 4 such pairs in different colors and patterns.

8. Wind chimes: I love the sound of wind chimes. When I bought my first wind chimes and hung it outside the window, after a careful search throughout the house to decide which location gets the best wind, I waited for the wind to move the chimes so that I could hear the melodious tinkling sound. Baroda is at its cold windy best and I love to fall asleep with the jingle of wind chimes.

9. Dancing: Maybe music and dance go together. I danced to garba tunes during my childhood and won prizes. I danced in all dance functions in school and won prizes. I was virtually on the stage all through the years. I danced to dhol beats during Ganapathi Sthapna and Visarjan. My favourites are desi dance item numbers like Munni Badnaam & Morni Baaga Maa. It is difficult for me to not dance when I hear such catchy Indian girly songs. If you notice carefully, my feet would be tapping lightly. Subconsciously!