Monday, March 24, 2014

Why Are You Happy?

This Friday, the baby asked to be dressed in finery and be taken out for ice cream. When I did it late in the afternoon, she was practically bouncing in the mall! So I asked her, now you are happy?

She says, Yes. I am

I asked why are you happy, expecting to hear about the dress, the ice cream...

The answer that came instead just shocked me.

She said, "Because I like to be happy"

Such a simple thing... I like it, so I am happy. I will not tie it down to material stuff :)

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Shirt, Tie, Pinafore, Salwar... WTH?

I pass a school on my way to work and this morning, I happened to notice the uniform. The boys wore pink shirts, grey shorts and grey ties. The girls wore pink shirts, grey pinafores and grey ties... and black salwars underneath!!!

I was like, WTH. Why make them wear so many layers in India, which is typically a hot country? If you don't want the girls to wear skirts that bare the legs, make them wear a proper kurta with the salwar. For comfort, you can substitute the kameez with a light vest. That will leave the girls free from the hassle of a dupatta and add to the smartness quotient. Or if you want them to wear pinafores, add long socks or light stockings to the uniform. Why make them wear thick bulky salwars that too in stark black colour. The entire outfit looks hideous. Can you guys imagine? I could not click pics from a fast moving vehicle but will try to in the coming days.

Smart Indian School Uniform
This is smart and conservative
Source: http://www.chinmayarjpm.in/

Then afterwards, I was thinking why they would do that? Is it deliberate, to dress school going girls in dowdy outfits covered from neck to toe so that they are kept safe? Are they respecting the sensibilities of the Indian middle class where certain people still have reservations about their daughters wearing skirts and shorts? Or is it that the school is just plain conservative?

Whatever the reason be, I can not stop thinking about those little girls sweltering in their classrooms while I sit comfortably in my air conditioned office.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hyderabad... a confluence of old world Nizam City and new age Cyberabad

The city of Nizams... isn't that how each of us read about Hyderabad? I remember I did. For me, the city was all about old world charm, laad bazaar (bangles, chaand baalis!) and biryani!!!

Charminar
Charminar thru the rain
The city welcomed me with a downpour of rain and the weather was fantastic throughout. I met up with a friend of mine after a decade nearly. She was a lovely host and thanks to her and her huby, I was able to do the touristy thing too. They took me to Charminar and even with cats and dogs pouring down upon us, they were game to help me look for my desired souvenirs. You can see the pic above, it was snapped through the wind shield. I loved the half hidden view of the monument.

From the heart of the city as we moved to the elite Banjara Hills and Jubilee Hills, you could see a modern affluent city. We ate at a lovely Barbecue place called JB. They had an awesome Sea Food counter that needless to say, I snapped pics of. Noteworthy mention to the grilled pineapple and the ice cream sundae. Oh and they also had a singer who was belting out English numbers from the 80s and 90s. Throw in the chatter of a hundred or so people to the mix and you have a heady cacophony. We did manage to converse a lot though. Catching up on people and reminiscing how lives have changed. Her two little kiddos were the icing on the cake. Her daughter was almost as old as mine and by the time the evening ended, we bonded so well that she held on to my hand all the way to dinner and back. And the little 8 month old son was so so adorable. I did not hear him cry once in the entire day! Such perfect little angels :) I loved playing with him so much. That and looking at the way the siblings were interacting, made me want to get another one of mine soon ;)

Seafood Display Sea Bass Shark Eel Octopus Ladyfish
Seafood Display at JB, Hyderabad
Shark, Eel, Octopus, Lady fish and Sea Bass
 And then, the next day onward I was at Cyberabad - a modern metropolis of chrome and glass buildings that have come to define commercial complexes in the last 2 decades in our country. Looking at these buildings, you can never tell where you are. A few iconic ones like DLF Ship building (Gurgaon) or ILFS (Mumbai) aside, the rest look like unidentical clones of each other. You could easily lift the one in Hyderabad and place it in Mumbai. The one in Kolkata and place it in Hyderabad. It wouldn't make much different to the skyline of the commercial hub I suppose. How I wish we return to the architectural nuances that are unique to the region in the modern construction as well. Anyway, the name Cyberabad itself ticked me. I thought it was a slang. Then I saw a police bearing this name and was amused that the authorities did have a quiry sense of humor to name an IT park thus. In India, it could easily be named after historical figures, political leaders or Gods!
Paradise Biryani Hyderabad
Me at Paradise.. Happy grin after an awesome dinner
I did sample the delectable Hyderabadi Mutton Birayani at the famous Paradise Hotel.. My colleagues had been there and were keen to eat there again. Although I had been advised to give this place a skip and eat at Biryani Corner, I went with the flow. I quite enjoyed the tender mutton biryani and if the other outlet makes it better, it is an excuse to go back... No? We also had Qubani ka Meetha with vanilla ice cream out there. Apricots stewed with elaichi and kesar made for a lovely dessert. I also picked up biscuits from Karachi Bakery on the way back. I have to say... those were some of the best biscuits I have EVER eaten. Those vanished so fast at home that I had no chance to click pics!

And finally, I wrapped my trip with a short beauty bloggers meet up! I met Nidhi or Nids and she is a guest writer at IBJ, ETM and many more. We met for the first time and it was like catching up with an old friend. Like me, she has found wonderful friends through blogging and we hit it off immediately. It was a lovely end to the trip I must say :)

Nide & I
Nids & I
The best part of the trip though was coming home to my daughter and the millions of hugs I got from her. Nothing can beat that. Absolutely Nothing!


Saturday, March 08, 2014

This Woman's Day...

A very happy woman's day to all the ladies out there. I am sure you have read loads of messages since morning telling you how lovely you are... I too have read tonnes of them on WhatsApp, Facebook and have been wished by family, friends and colleagues. This is one day of the year that every marketeer in the world tries to make you feel special. Isn't it?
 Woman's Day
Source: WhatsApp
So after you have felt special and all that, think about the women in your life that form a big part and yet go neglected by many. Think about it.  How many of you wished your maids today? Or  any of your support staff. We cannot imagine our lives without them. And yet do we treat them like women. If you are one of those who do... kudos to you.  If not,  then maybe you should think about it. Aren't they women too? Isn't it there day as well? So shouldn't we be nice to them too?
Just wondering....

Friday, March 07, 2014

Exclamations!!!!

Reading my last post and a few more before that made me realise that I use a lot of exclamation maeks in my writing. Almost every para ends with an exclamation mark. I can imagine my high school English teacher telling me to tone it down!

exclamation mark
Exclamations Galore!
Source: http://www.vectorstock.com

I think I have an OCD with them. Even when writing a post about misuse of this punctuation, I cant stop myself from using them :p

The Fragrant Rose

I have never been a floral fragrance person. My preferences have always been fruity or spicy. Citrus, Musk, Lemon, Pomegranate based fragrances have been the ones I used to buy. As much as I love the scent of jasmine, lavender and rajnigandha I have only been able to tolerate agarbattis with floral scents. Never perfumes. And rose I thought was the most overrated!

The Fagrant Rose
The Fagrant Rose
Source: squidoo.com

Off late however, I have started liking rose scents. It started with oil dispensers dispensing fragrant aroma oils slowly and filling up the room with a light rosy scent. It moved on to agarbattis and just last month, I picked up two rose scented sprays. For someone with strong likes and dislikes when it comes to fragrances, it is a big big step!

And if you are wondering what the point of all this is, I figured the following:
  1. Very often, our choices may not be the popular ones. Even if it puzzles you, stick to your choice. You will find other things that appeal to you. People around you might fiend it weird. But what difference does it make to you?
  2. Never say Never! I always believed that I would not come to like rose scents and look at me now. As we get exposed to different things in life our tastes, likes and dislikes change. We need to keep an open mind
And now, I am game to try out more feminine floral fragrances!