31 Years, One Life

Today, I am thirty one years old. I have always been fascinated with numbers and I love to see correlations of numbers with things that are familiar to me. So while thirty was a milestone year on the way to middle age, thirty one is important because it brings to mind one of the biggest joys of life, ice cream. The urge to write something on this momentous-to-me day came from a beautiful birthday gift from one of my closest friends.

Birthdays generally make me low before they arrive. Not for the reason most people would assume, of getting older. Getting older is inevitable, and I welcome it as progress. I feel low because I always feel that a birthday should be an eventful day, somehow different from all other days. And just before every birthday, I feel that this one is going to let me down. But thanks to all the wonderful friends and family around me, I have not really had too many in my adult life, that let me down.

This birthday has been specially wonderful till now, for a lot of reasons. A hike and a promotion on the days preceding it, a large stash of new clothes, a surprise birthday cake by hubby and a wonderful note for me from a dear friend... It's the thought that counts, though probably not for the hike and promotion.

I guess what makes my day wonderful is that so many people think of me, and care enough to wish me a Happy Birthday, my boss, my team, my friend who called me in the morning and started talking about an email and had to be reminded of the day, friends from far away, whom I rarely hear from, but who still scrap me on orkut on this day... everyone makes this day special. Well... that was a silly rambling rant. Now I will head out to eat some ice cream.


We have a winner!

OK, I did it. I wrote my novel of 50,000 words in less than 30 days! Yes, for once in my life I have finished even before the deadline!

Of course, the novel is nowhere near ready for anyone but myself to read. But yes, the first draft is done, and I have eleven months to edit and make changes before the next round of NaNo!


Almost famous

It's thrilling to see your own name in print. Alright, granted it's not in print here, but there is a print edition out, which I will get my hands on!


State of the nation

No, this is not an introspective post to see how far our great country has come in the 60 years of independence. Believe it or not, this is a restaurant review.

Since my SO is a meat-lover, we thought it would be a good idea to go check out a new restaurant called "Barbecue Nation" for dinner tonight. So I called up to make a reservation. I was told that there are no spots open till 10:30 PM so I agreed to that time. When we got there at 10:30, however, we were made to wait another 20 minutes to get a table. There were many more people around waiting just like us, some of whom were already more irritated than us!

Finally we got in at about 10:50, and figured out what the deal was. They would serve us meats etc. at our table, which had a grill in it. We could barbecue the meats etc on our own and baste them with the variety of sauces that were placed on the table in little bowls. And there was a buffet of soups, salads, main course (multicuisine) and desserts. So far so good.

We were shown to our table and given the drinks menu. 10 minutes after that, and still no one had arrived to help us with our food. Finally on signaling to one of the staff, he came and explained the deal to us. And asked us whether we were vegetarian or non. We gave him our drink orders and also told him that we would want only three of the nonvegetarian options, and none of the vegetarian ones. We asked him to exclude the chicken tikka and the tandoori fish.

The hot grill with smoldering coals was placed in the middle of the table, and our drinks arrived. But there was no sign of the meats. After a while, a guy came up with a plate of chicken tikka and tried to serve us. We iterated to him that we did not want the chicken tikka, the fish or the vegetarian options. Just as he left, another fellow turned up with paneer satay and then yet another with mushrooms! By now, hubby was getting pretty upset. But we sent the guy away, again explaining our choices. One of the senior staff had noticed by now that something was going on, so he came up and we explained the whole list to him. He scurried off to get us our preferences, but by the time it arrived, two more attempts had been made to serve us fish or chicken.

Finally our grill items arrived, but I was disappointed to find that the food was already cooked, and that the grill on the table was merely a prop. The rest of the evening went on pretty tamely, but the damage was done and the hubby had blown his top at the staff. As for me, I was already composing this post in my head.

The food had been indifferent, and as I have already said the grill was just a prop. Nothing against the place as such, but I am not sure if I will be going there again very soon.


Finished Reading "Harry Potter and the Deathy Hallows"

It feels like the end of an era. Well maybe not the very end, as there are two movies still to come out. But all the anticipation for the book, all the speculation, everything, over in less than 12 hours!

I suppose it is my fault for speed-reading it. And for reading the epilogue first. But then, I cannot stand suspense at all. It is a terrible thing. I prefer getting into a book or a movie, knowing who, if anyone, is going to die, and whether or not there will be a happy ending.

Well, I won't post any spoilers here, so that all of you can enjoy the book. But yes, I am really sad that the book was leaked beforehand, and some malicious people spoiled the story by revealing stuff to the ones who are not like me (the ones who like suspense, I mean). Sadly, the leak was genuine.


Restricted Viewing!!!

Online Dating

Yes, that's the rating this site has determined for my blog! Apparently, "

This rating was determined based on the presence of the following words:

  • pain (2x)
  • hurt (1x)"


70 Questions

70 Questions I Guarantee You've Never Answered in a Meme

1. Would you chew gum after someone else already chewed it?
Eeeew! No!
2. What describes your relationship status?

3. Who was your last call from?
My cousin

4. Are you a heart breaker, or the broken heart ?
Definitely breaker ;)

5. Ever been skinny dippin?
No L

6. Earrings or necklace?
Earrings! Loooooong ones!

7. Who have you talked to most today?
My husband

8. Pumpkins?
Are the last vegetable would think of eating.

9. Friend that lives closest to you?

10. Color of your shirt?

12. Who's on your missed call?
My beautician(!)

13. What is your background on your computer?
Hubby, mom and bro at a restaurant.

14. Do you wish on 11:11?

16. Are you a bad influence?
You bet!!!

17. What color are your eyes?
Dark brown.

18. Would you rather have your name or your siblings name?
Mine (Since sibling is male, of course)

19. Would you do anything for someone?

20. Have you ever been called an asshole?

21. Favorite color(s)?

22. Do you use smiley faces on the computer?
Yes :D

23. do you like anyone?
Almost everyone.

24. Are your grades good?
Good enough, I suppose.

25. Do you ever think people hate you for filling these out?
Yeah I know a lot of people do.

27. Does your best friend have a myspace?
Nope, neither do I.

28. Whose page did you visit last?
Amit Verma

29. Last time you went out to lunch?
A week ago.

30. Do you watch the Gilmore Girls?

31. Have you ever enjoyed listening to Jack Johnson?

32. Have you ever seen or enjoyed watching the O.C.?

33. Do you have one or more Britney Spears C.D.s?

34. Which radio stations are your favorite?
Radio City

35. Are you a "Lost" fanatic?

36. Still have pictures of your ex?

37. Do you have a song by Ozzy Osbourne in your library?
Yep… not my library, but my husband’s.

38. Alanis Morisette?
One song I think.

39. Do you watch Family Guy Regularly?

40. King of the Hill?

41. Do you read trashy romance novels often?
Yes of course!

43. Do you sing obnoxiously in the car?
All the time! Ask hubby!

44. Do you ever sing obnoxiously in the shower?
Not really.

45. Have you ever watched a little kid's show?
Yep, all the time!

46. Have you ever pretended your crush was with you when they weren't?

47. Did you draw pictures for your first crush back in elementry?

48. Have you ever liked a girl/boy but didn't ask her/him out?

49. Have you ever written a poem or story about your life?
Tried to, but never got to finish them.

50. Have you ever spent over an hour thinking about nothing but
your crush?
Not for a whole hour, at least not in one go

51. Have you ever liked someone solely because of their personality?

52. Do you eat all the servings in the food groups on a daily basis?
Heck no!

53. Are you ever a freak about cleanliness or organization?
Almost never.

54. Have you ever been to South America or Africa?

55. Do you know how to knit?

56. Do you have a cell phone or iPod with a patterned cover?

57. Have you ever written love song lyrics yourself and put them on myspace?

58. Do you keep a diary or journal online?

59. When you open your closet, what is the dominant color of?
Black and red.

60. Baskin Robbins or Coldstone?

61. Physics or chemistry?

62. Earphones or headphones?

63. Pink or teal?

64. Earrings or a ring?

66. Harry potter, lord of the rings or star wars?
Harry Potter!!!

67. Fly or road trip?
Road trip.

Not here

69. What is your favorite TV show?
Whose line, The Foodie

70. Have you ever bought clothing at Sears?

No tags... don't want to get cursed by anyone!


Pastafarian Sighting In Hyderabad!

Yes! There are others like us out there, who are not afraid to stand up and be counted! All hail the FSM!


The warm fuzzies

A good friend and colleague gave me an unexpected bit of news today, that she and her husband have adopted a baby girl. I have no idea why, but the news gave me warm fuzzy feelings and I have been unaccountably happy for the rest of the day today.

I have no idea about the background of this child, but I am sure that she couldn't have a better set of parents if she had chosen them out of a catalog herself. It is people like these who make this world a better place and I wish all three of them every happiness in their lives.

I have no idea why this news has turned me into a pile of mush, but I thought that this needed to be written down and it was all I could do to stop myself from giving her a hug today! (Professional decorum frowns upon hugging in office meetings, I suppose.)


Goa fish delight...

That was what the waiter told me the drink was, when he brought us two glasses of a pale pink beverage as complimentary drinks at a Sunday Brunch. I was bewildered but bravely took a sip to figure out that it tasted strongly of guavas with a peachy aftertaste... Well with the varied accents in this country and the fact that my friend is in Goa right now, and I will be in Goa next month, can you blame me for mishearing the "Guava Peach Delight"?


Heartfelt Gratitude

The autorickshaw strike going on in Hyderabad is causing a lot of people serious inconvenience. But this is not a post on autorickshaw drivers and their tyranny, nor is it about whether or not strikes are a good thing to have. This post is to express my gratitude toward all the people who have pitched in to help their friends and colleagues who depend on autorickshaws (like me) get to work and back in the past 10 days. To all of my friends and colleagues who are going quite a bit out of their way to pick me (and others) up in the morning, or drop us home in the evening, a million thanks. May your tribe forever grow and prosper.


Natural Progression?

Here's a set of ads that I happened to look at, while browsing on reviewjournal.com.

This is a real screenshot, honest! See how it gives you a progression:
1) Meet your match (and presumably marry them for the next step)
2) Get divorced from your spouse
3) Look for true love again
4) When you can't find it, eat chocolate and strengthen your bones in the process.

How straight and simple that looks, no?


Rolling blogs...

I am now a proud member of the Atheist Blogroll!


Mangal Attacks!!!

I am listening with half a ear right now to the news on tv. There is a report on Abishek's engagement to Ash, which is of course accompanied by the whole hullaballoo about Ash being "manglik". There have been a lot of "upay" or "workarounds" suggested to get over the bad influence of Mangal or Mars over the horroscope of the girl, including getting her symbolically married to a tree!

The general idea that everyone has of the "Manglik dosha" (don't ask me what exactly it means in terms of the horroscope, just that it involves some sinister positioning of Mars) is from weird Hindi movies where a Manglik girl gets married and then a lot of misfortune befalls her new family and so on. People never really tell you what exactly is the matter with a Manglik girl, and why people say that it is likely her husband will die. But I discovered something very interesting a few years ago about this matter.

My dad has a very good friend, who shares his interest in astrology and in fact practices it beyond the amateur interest that my dad shows in it. So one fine afternoon when these two buddies had their charts and papers strewn about and were discussing horroscopes (mine, of course) I overheard my dad asking this gentleman what being Manglik means. The gentleman assured him that is wansn't anything to worry about and generally people with the Manglik dosha have very strong sexual desires, and that is why it is recommended that they should be married to another Manglik. I suppose you can imagine what I thought about that? Well I rushed to share this news with my cousin who used to live with us, and who is also a Manglik. We sometimes still giggle about having a high enough sex drive to kill a guy from exhaustion.

Anyway both she and I got married in circumstances where our parents were not able to match our horroscopes with the guy's so I will never know if my SO is Manglik or not. But for the time being he seems to be coping well under the pressure, so to speak; in fact he seems to be positively thriving.

Of course, if you have read anything of my blog before, you will know that I do not believe a word of what horrscopes are supposed to reveal to us, and so it is all irrelevant to me. But it is sad to see that people let their entire lives be ruled by these ancient systems which have ceased to have any meaning in today's world, if they ever had any. Here you can read some interesting facts and workarounds for the Manglik Dosha. Of course, if you read this, you will know that it is all a money-making enterprise, (yep, you can pay by credit card or via direct debit from the major banks!) whether it involves buying charms or getting pujas and yagyas done to reduce the Martian terror or paying a pundit to get your daughter married to a tree!

ETA: Apparently my blog has been getting loads of hits since I wrote this post, because of the typo: "Abishek". So I won't correct it, but I will add the correct spelling "Abhishek" here too, so that I don't miss out on people Googling the correct spelling!


How was my vacation?

I've been asked why I didn't post about my vacation. Well I suppose it was not one of those life-changing vacations that people seem to have all the time, where they experience some awe-inspiring sight and then things are never the same after that. Well mine was more of a comfort vacation, being pampered, first by hotel staff, and then by a favourite aunt and her mom!

First of all, in Dubai, we stayed at the Grand Hyatt, where there are 14 different outlets to eat and drink at, and a lovely, lovely spa, where you are made to feel like a queen! There was the usual bit of shopping, specially requests from friends, some walks along the creek at night, and a lot of photography. And of course, the belly dance show!

Oman was a different story. It was laid back and peaceful, with serene white buildings all over, carefully manicured greenery all over the town of Muscat, contrasting with the rugged beauty of the mountains. Thousand year old forts provided lovely photo-ops, and so did pristine beaches with not a human in sight. And then there was the food. We had a surfeit of roast chicken and schwarma to choose from. Not to mention the heavenly cooking of my great-aunt. Who had pulled out all stops to pamper her "naat-jamai" (loosely translated as "grandson-in-law") on his first visit. There were daily siestas and scenic walks overlooking the sea. There was a barbecue party and there were gifts from relatives (ooooh yes!). It was a time to recharge and relax, which we did in spades. Go look at some pictures...