Flame

Shot by- AR

Shot by- AR

The first thoughts which come along in the mind with the word is a flickering candle or a lamp flame. In a dark night , just one flame is enough to lit up the room, to get everything done from cooking to reading. When I was young, I clearly remember studying in kerosene lamps whenever there was an outage , which was more than often but we never complained.

With the invention of inverters and generators,the usage of candles and lamps became less frequent. I don’t remember the time when it became a fashion to have candle lit dinners. Candles and their small yet meaningful flames lit across Jantar Mantar around the time when ‘Rang De Basanti’ was released. If I remember correctly, this trend started only after the film had a similar sequence. For every single time when people wanted to voice their opinion against the system, Jantar Mantar would be lit up in candle flames. Whether the issue was resolved or not , the mass had a way for their say.

Candles remind me of certain Diwali nights when diyas would get over or the oil would all be consumed before the night, when I opened a pack of them and put them across all windows and doors. They are less messy than diyas for sure. Birthdays are another occasions when you hunt for candles and blowing them in a room filled with lots of noisy friends and guests, hold special memories.

In terms of people, flames are always referred to ex! May be because , flames extinguish too fast. Although ex-flame always refers to an interesting, torrid and passionate affair even when it is remembered in a past tense!

The other flames that warm the heart and the entire surroundings are the ones that burn in the fireplaces during winters. Winters that are colder than a 1 degree or even lesser. I could understand the concept of a fireplace only in Shillong where each of the room has one and it has to be lit in the evening if one does not want to shiver in cold all through the night. Since India does not have the system of centralized cooling or heating, the indigenous methods like fireplaces work efficiently in colder places.

Last but not the least, each of the 10 evenings spent in Goa , 2 years back, were worth every single penny I spent on that trip. Thanks to the candle lit evenings which started as early as 6pm and carried on until mid-nights. Those wonderful nights are the one of the few extraordinary moments, I would wish to get  back to again and again…..and again!

Goa- 2014

Goa- 2014

 

 

Advertisements

Crush

220px-crush_strawberry_soda_austin_calhoon_photograph

Because I was not allowed to have a boyfriend in school and college, I had quite an emotionally stable life. Come to think of it, not being in a relationship had been a bliss actually. But then, I had my share of crushes so to say. This guy, lets name him ‘M’ ,was in my class with same elective as mine so we almost attended all our classes together except the practicals. Even though , having an affair was a strict no-no from mom, I thought , having a crush was not a big deal as it did not have any strings and also mom would never come to know about it!

Slowly but steadily, the crush was getting harder and one of my closest friend decided to take some charge. She asked one of the other guys to ask M if he had a girlfriend and that I liked him. I was not very happy with this situation now because this was being forced on me and I was kinda happy in my cocoon and really didn’t want to know if M was interested in me or not. Also, M was quite oblivious of my feelings for him and I didn’t want to jeopardize , whatever minimum talking terms that we were on.

Anyways, the news reached me in a week , that M had a girlfriend already, back in his hometown and hence no further questions were asked. It would take quite a few days for me to come out of coma and I felt terribly guilty. Guilty of god knows what….! For the rest of the semesters, I chose not to tell any of my friends about anything personal and of course the equations with M changed for the rest of the years in the university. I avoided to look at M or talk to him anytime during the classes and non-class times that we classmates would get together.

About 12 years later I met almost all my school mates and college-mates on FB except M. It would take another 9 years for M to get into FB.

Just a couple of months back, one day I was looking through the probable friends FB suggests and when I found M’s profile in it, I found myself smiling. Since there were no pictures in the profile, I sent a message asking if he was the same guy that was in my college. In the reply , M just said yes and that he was roll number 54. Well, after a few weeks , he uploaded some pictures of him and his family on his account for all to see.

I was horrified to see what had become of a handsome lad in a span of 20 years. Here was a middle aged stout man with a beer belly ,his hair was all orange because of henna and I assumed it must have all gone grey and I was staring at a face which looked about 20 years more older than our age. I could not sleep that night…wondering about what must have gone through his life that he grew old so fast. Then I wondered , if I have also grown that old….then I also wondered why was I wondering about him. I had always maintained that age was just a number and its our attitude which actually matters but a look at M told me , may be it was not the case. I remember seeing him as a 20 year old guy and I saw him now 20 years later, I was ready to see some changes but not such drastic ones. I realized, if we abuse ourselves by smoking or drinking or by taking too much stress , it does take away years out of our lives. One has to keep fit and make sure we rally against nature by staying fit and happy.

M looked old to me that day and I felt as if I was looking at some ancient temple in Bali. In a flash, I was in the morning classes when I used to look at him during the first class of the day and felt cheerful for the rest of the week!! As I smiled and remembered the old times,I  took my jacket out for my evening 5 km walk.

Bali- Google images

Bali- Google images

 

Apology

Sorry....

Sorry….Its not so hard

Small word but the most powerful one to make or break relationships, personal or professional. One word ,which if you genuinely feel , would change you forever towards some event or person or you.

Sometimes we make mistakes and sometimes we don’t, in either case when things go wrong one of the persons need to step back so that the relationship is not damaged. Most of us are caught up in out sweet little ego trips and are unable to render an apology, whether or not it is due. Over  a period of time and experience I have also realized that people forgive and forget easily if you apologize even when it was their mistake. Most of the times , its our ego which stops us from bending down but then why not if the person is an integral part of our life.

Sometimes I do remember the people I have lost because I burnt the bridges after crossing them. At times I miss them and wished I had apologized , they would have still been there in my life….

Life is short and crisp….no time for any ego trips really, lets just try to hold all the good people rest of our lives.

sorry handwritten

 

Broken ties

Aai Google images

Aai
                                    Google images

The first time Aai came to stay with us was for 2 months in January 2016. Because her son had stayed out all these years after school she never could stay with him.It had been more than 15 years that she had ever stayed with her son for so long. her son would come over to his mother a couple of times in a year or on a special occasion like diwali but had never stayed for more than a week. Aai longed to live with her last borne and hence as soon as her son arrived in India after a year of staying abroad , he sent for her. this time it was special, he had been blessed with a baby boy and Aai was more than ecstatic.

Aai was not keeping too well this year. she kept sleeping at odd hours and was tired all the time. she would not get into the kitchen for any purpose even to make goodies for her son nonetheless she tried playing with her grandson. Later on she would know that she was misdiagnosed for thyroid and was taking wrong medicines for a long time. after a couple of weeks of staying at her son’s place, she confided that in spite of her health, she liked staying in Hyderabad. She also started to confide in me. The bond between two women had started to begin and we would sometimes talk late into the night. Most of the times I would be asking for her secret recipes and the ones that her son loved while he grew up, sometimes the conversation would lead to people. people who were no more there in Aai’s life, her husband, her previous daughter-in-laws. Aai had 2 sons and unfortunately both were divorced and fortunately had remarried. She said at times she got concurrent nightmares about the divorces of her sons . She confessed her fear of her sons being cursed for their marriages.I would quietly would listen to the never ending tales of her and would encourage her to get out for morning and evening walks more often. She mentioned that she had one major regret in her life, that her younger son would not share much with her unlike her older one. I attributed this trait of her husband to the fact he had mostly stayed away from the house after school. Aai said , her son had been seeing his first wife for more than 5 years but he never mentioned it to her or anyone until they were ready for marriage. Although there were disagreements in the house about his choice of girl but eventually all agreed. Aai said , she had told everybody that she does not want to lose her son and its better that everyone accepts the girl and it really does not matter even if she was from another religion, caste, creed or state. Their family belonged to the upper caste in Maharashtra, the Patils, the warriors from the clan of Shivaji and were staunch believers of caste system since time immemorial. It was actually a matter of great disgust to everyone in the family that her would-be daughter-in-law was from another religion and caste. Somehow the family gulped it down with a pinch of salt as they didnt want to lose their son who they already saw so very less.

Aai’s health and the bond between us started getting better, she started confiding more in me. It seems , she never liked her son’s first wife for she dressed like a man and had no mannerisms of a daughter -in-law. She was totally overweight and would do nothing about her health. Aai also mentioned how she would make beef and meat disrespecting their family values of being vegetarians and that she would argue with her son about how she cannot leave eating meat ever. Aai resented these arguments between her son and his wife and knew she could not help the bitterness everyone in her family was facing whenever her son and his wife were visiting them. Aai resented the fact that her daughter-in-law never put Bindi or Sindoor or wear a Saree even on festive occasions and that she was always in salwar or jeans even if people came visiting them. On their first diwali after the wedding,Aai said her daughter-in-law went to sleep at 6 in the evening when it was time for lighting the diyas. All the relatives who came to wish for diwali were surprised why the bride was sleeping on the eve of diwali.

One time, Aai had been visiting them along with her older son. Both the sons were sleeping in the hall on a makeshift bed as Aai was asleep on the double bed in the master bedroom. Her daughter-in-law was supposed to arrive by an early morning train from Mumbai. When Aai got up in the morning she was shocked to see the daughter-in-law sleeping with her husband even while he was asleep with his older brother. ‘She does not have any sense , she is not of good character’ , Aai had concluded to me.

It was very difficult to comprehend why would someone hurt everyone in the family at one go. Why someone would or could slap their spouse, or even why they would carry on their ego trip when it was supposed to be a love marriage. Sometimes, when there are no answers , time decides to deal with the unwanted things. And so whatever had happened, did happen for good, I told Aai.

Aai visited us again this month for we were traveling abroad to settle down once for all. She looked good healthwise and mindwise. She told me to take care of her son and grandson. As I held her in a tight embrace, she got all her answers and I was content to see her equally content face.

Peace Google images

Peace
     Google images

Movie Review- Sarabjit

Dalbir Kaur- Sarbjit's sister

                           Dalbir Kaur- Sarbjit’s sister

Sarbjit: A tale of an unlucky lad who spent 23 prime years of his life imprisoned in a dingy 4×4 ft prison cell in Pakistan,of how siblings can put up a resilient fight for each other, how even after almost 70 years of independence we do not have any system in place, whatsoever and most importantly a tale of hope when there is none.
Randeep Hooda manages to steal the show.The movie should have had Sarbjit as the central character instead it is Dalbir Kaur, his sister. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as Dalbir is a failure, she could not get into the skin of the character till the end. She does not have the look and the body language of a Sardarni from rural Punjab, but her effort to get there becomes so distracting that it eclipses almost everything else in the film.The entire project seems to be designed to ensure that no one overshadows her, which is self-defeating for a movie!
Hooda sparkles amongst all this and lets us forget that he is only acting. Richa Chadha as Sarabjit’s wife is a mute character throughout but in the only scene where she is allowed a dialogue, she shines brilliantly. Darshan Kumaar is the fresh breath of Bollywood.He does his minuscule job perfectly as Sarbjit’s lawyer in Pakistan.
Overall, Omung Kumar has only done the job of telling the story of one person and it is not good enough to do anything for the release of the rest 400 odd prisoners still in Pakistan.
Lastly, Aishwarya Rai should do only Cannes and Bollywood should give more power to real actors. Predicting next nationals for Randeep (and Richa hopefully)!
Watch it for Sarbjit, the lost soul.

Sar

Google Images

 

Y for YOLO

DSC04830

After all, you only live once. Might as well live it up while you can, right?

I have been a rebel, right from my childhood days. I like to do my things and do not like any resistance. Having been brought up by working parents and very strict ones, I still managed to rebel out and do things that I wanted to do. Back then there was no mantra for living life that way. It was simply called bad behavior and that I must learn to listen to elders. Slowly and steadily my behavior was accepted and I was allowed to decide for myself. Why, because I would simply not bow down for anyone.

A friend of mine recently posted a picture on social media of the supermarket shelf while she was shopping, and it contained only one box of a certain yogurt her kid eats. She and her husband both commented on how they now have to get this box. This is consistent with psychology indicating that as things become more scarce, they become more desirable. And indeed, this is the case with life as well. Research shows that when reminded of death, people become more aware that life is scarce. In turn, this causes people to believe that life is more meaningful.

While I was on the crossroads of deciding about my divorce , my childhood friend told me, “If you don’t do something then you will never know what you would be losing out in your life”. He had a point and I realized how could I be shackled by something I was utterly unhappy with.

Somehow, I have been a recklessly-impulsive-heart on the sleeve person and I have never looked back once I have decided something. Life with Ani has calmed me down a bit I still remain the same person. I always advocate- “Go by your heart” to all my friends, colleagues and siblings and kids.Mostly because , its your life and no one else should be deciding for it. And also because You Live Only Once. And there are no second chances here !

Cheers for this beautiful thing we all have in common- LIFE!

Google Images

Google Images

V for Vacation

                                                                            The Carribean

Vacation, the most pleasant word of all times!

I took my last official vacation in Goa back in 2014. It was for 10 long days and I really relaxed and sunbathed in cool waters of Goa. Goa was pleasant in March and so we could roam around in a scooter comfortably along the entire length of it. After 2014, life has been pretty hectic. Though I have been on an extended sabbatical, its not so vacation like anymore 😦

1.Vacations are stress busters-Getting away for regular vacations and leaving our every day stresses give us a break from the constant high levels of stress hormones and a chance to repair some of the damage.

2.Vacations improve sex life-Is there really a thing as “vacation sex?” Studies have shown that people who vacation regularly reported feeling sexier, with greater romance in their relationships – which equates to better sex and hence better relationships.

3.Vacations makes us more productive-People feeling more creative after taking time off, and are more satisfied with their jobs when they took regular vacations.

4.Vacations makes you thinner and hence look younger—People who vacation on a regular basis feel more energized.  They were also found to have improved glucose levels and even had some weight loss around their waists.

5.Vacation makes you happier-Of course the excitement and planning for the vacation is always thrilling in anticipation of the actual vacation days which makes you release happy hormones.

6.Vacations makes you open to new perspectives-Whether its a beach or a foreign country or driving through the heat of Las Vegas, time from work gives you an excellent time to reflect and open yourself to new possibilities. At such a period away from work you can see the world from a holistic angle rather than a lopsided angle. We could be reading a business book, learn new cultures and change our perspective which may help us gain better vision as w return to your every day job.

7.Vacation gives us family time-Quality of life is depends upon how you appreciate yourself and those who are around you. It could be with yourself, family or friends; but only vacations from a busy schedule offers you time to appreciate the people around you. Time away fro busy schedule gives us an opportunity to think about those things that matter, whether it is by reflecting or planning, vacation gives you a sense of peace and warmth you will never get in a workplace environment.

Above all the brain does better with rest, and so does the heart. Mental and physical fatigue causes stress, sloppy decision-making, and carelessness.And in the meantime life slips away.

So me going to plan for my next one…are you?

Greece

                                                                                         Greece

D for deja Vu

IMG_1449

Its that eerie feeling you get where you know, you’ve lived that moment before, but logic defies you…!

Déjà Vu is an expression derived from the French, meaning “already seen”. When it occurs, it reminds us of a place, person or an activity we have already experienced before. At times, it feels as if its a moment from our past life and at others as if we have already seen that sequence in our dreams before. None of these theories have any backing though.

DSC08125

To first understand how déjà vu might have something to do with our memory, we need to understand how our memory works.

I have read that our brain is thought to have two memory systems- Short term memory and Long term Memory. The former has a limited capacity and processes incoming sensory information from surroundings. Information in Short term memory is erased fast unless transferred to Long term memory for storage.

DSC08228

Our new experiences are processed by Short-term memory and transferred into Long-term memory depending upon its importance and impact on our heart and mind. So it seems that our Long term memory has an infinite capacity for information and is used to store knowledge of events that shape our lives and can be recalled in detail later.

DSC08791

Though not fully proven, it is believed that déjà vu is down to a communication issue between Short term and Long term memory, like a circuit break. This theory indicates that the mismatch between knowing an event is new, but it feeling familiar, is because of sensory surrounding information is going straight into long term memory.This explains why a new experience can feel familiar, but not as substantial as a fully recalled memory.

To me this theory seems most logical and puts an end to the bizarre feeling I get, while being deja vu’ed!

So folks enjoy the glitch in the Matrix of our brains…

After all its just a short circuit and not anything paranormal 🙂

DSC08848

He and She

fat-duck

He loved spicy food and she loved non-veg. He loved romantic Bollywood numbers from the 70’s, she loved random stuff. He was fond of business news and she loved cricket. He valued family relationships outside the immediate family too, she was born and brought up in a nuclear family. He loved home made food because he had lived on ordered food for a long time, she loved to go out and very often because she gave food ratings on a regular basis for restaurants. He was a health freak, she loved to eat, read, sleep and repeat. They were poles apart in diversities yet they clicked. Or so they thought. Opposites do attract but not necessarily for longer periods in time.

They had met on internet when it was new. Just chat and mails in those times. They grew fond of each other over next 5 years. Little did they realized that the charm was superficial. It was mostly because they were still in college and were not committed to anyone else at that point in time. Coming from different religious and ethnic backgrounds, their relationship was doomed from day one. But they managed to overlook the red signals, defied their common sense and went against their families.

The marriage went kaput in just a couple of months. They realized it soon but they dragged it for a year somehow. She took a decision to pursue her studies instead and he took a travelling job and a transfer to another city.

Rest is history.

Lesson learnt from other’s mistake: Do not jump into a relationship just because you are single and never take your marriage for granted.

Duck-Amazing

PS- He loved being with nature, she loved being inside her cozy room, reading and cooking!

Talent and A Hobby

1c

Well…. undoubtedly it has to be playing with colors….that is, on a sheet of paper. The pleasure of watching the colors mix and match and create something new is eternally blissful to me.

Its been sometime now that I have held my brush and colors because the newest member of the house needs my undivided attention! But I did take up another hobby. Something that I just tried one fine day and since then it has kind of become a passion.

3c

Crocheting. It is fulfilling and rewarding when I finish a project and it fits in correctly. Its fascinating to see my crochet basket full of various colored yarns and needles. Its amazing to know that I have the choice of picking up any beautiful color and start making something. Be it a cap, booties, sweater, baby blanket or a pair of cup cozies…. I have tried them all. I love the Adrenalin rush when I start a project and I cannot believe myself when the passion remains unruffled until the last day, when I finish it!

7c

So from painting with oils and water I have moved on to crocheting….I cannot believe just a few years back I was manager, Customer Service for a leading Telecom group. The decision to quit work and travel with Ani was a quick yet conscious one. This gave me more time with my guy and of course I indulged in my hobbies more than ever. Playing with colors initially and now with colored yarns has a lot to do with my childhood. Painting was something I picked up when I was about 10 years and I saw mom knitting whenever she could get time from her job. Hence the transformation was not a difficult one.

4

Currently , I’m crocheting a granny square blanket and a dungaree for my baby. I’m wondering if I should crochet a sun-hat or an infinity scarf for myself one day. I consider my hobbies to be a talent because I can spend the whole day doing them and the project turns into a useful product!

My husband proposes that I should turn my hobbies into a business. Initially the idea was not appealing but now I think, why not create a business out of your hobby.

6c

And work would never be boring then…!

The Roseman Bridge

 

                                                                      Caught N’ Shot- A&R

It was after lunch and Francesca sat on the porch sipping iced tea.With Richard gone for more than a decade, thoughts about Robert came to her mind more frequently.As a usual chore,she got dressed up for her walk to the middle river across the Roseman bridge. After the walk she would pick vegetables from her garden and cook while listening to radio. Then she would read all the letters she wrote to Robert.
She stopped her car about a mile away from the bridge and started to walk. As the gravel road turned, the bridge started to appear.The memories of that sultry August afternoon started to flash in front of her eyes. It seemed just like yesterday, when she had come here with Robert .It was a good 15 miles from her home nevertheless she was glad she took the decision.
Today she saw a truck parked by the side of the road. Her eyes danced like butterflies all around.It would be stupid to look for Robert after so long, she thought. But she had kept his memories alive in her heart.She almost ran towards the bridge, when she saw a figure leaning over the railings, looking down at the River.She felt like this person had been standing there since eternity.Francesca called out his name and he looked back. He was an older, frailer version of her tall and husky Robert.
He smiled and looked for her hand. As she moved a step closer to hold him, he murmured,”I knew you would come” .Closing her eyes she hugged him tight and said.”Let’s go home Robert…”

Free to be Me

Free as a bird Shot by – Me (Big Sur CA)

Independent, fiery, ambitious, conservative, determined, practical and faithful. That’s what I’m. A  fervent mix of funky and conservative. Just the rightfully delight-able Margarita on the Rocks !!

So what is the quality that I admire most in myself? Undoubtedly, being determined wins the crown. When I decide on something, I move ahead and do it. Whatever it is, whoever it is and wherever it is.

Generally it takes your entire childhood to know who you are. When you step onto your adulthood, the confidence is not much to exercise yourself even if you know who you are. The toll of studies, working for a career or even for that matter working for the relationships is just too high. So , it took a couple of decades for me, to be me.

For a long time, I felt like a caged bird, struggling each day to fly out. It was inspirational to see other people being able to do their own thing. At times I hated myself for not being courageous enough to break free and at other times I would just flow with the time. But at all times pledging myself to swap my wings and fly out one day…

When finally that day came, I literally took a flight out of the country….far away to the Americas…! A sabbatical of  6 months from the humdrum of so called life. And I became the original me !!

I can be fearless. I can be ambitious in all senses, determined and fiery. I can be me now. It will be unfair not to mention the motivation I got from my loved ones. Angels who kept telling me to move on and get my peace. My rocks, who stood by me during the toughest years of my life. However, if I did not fall while I hit rock bottom, it was only because of my grit and endurance.

So, here it is for all the strong souls, who have lost their way. Get up and get going. If I can do it, everyone can!!

Tuscany

Peace

A Name

btn5

I was born to  soldier and his working wife. My dad met my mom when she had just joined Airforce in a civilian capacity. He was a Parachute Jumping Instructor and was posted at my mom’s city unit. He fell in love with this independent girl, working with the soldiers and proposed to marry her. All of 18, my mom directed him to her dads’. Marriage fixed in about 6 months time and they live happily ever after.

3

Oh wait…I was born the following year after the marriage. Since mom returned to work after 3 months of maternity leave, I was taken care by many people while she worked. My granny, my aunt (mom’s sister), her cousin and one lady who was a neighbor. This lady had 3 teenaged sons and she happily proposed to look after me while my mom worked from 7 in the morning until 2 pm. She would feed me,change and tuck me in as and when needed. Her sons were grown up and she missed having a baby around, she said. Also she loved having a girl for herself ! My mom sometimes would leave me at my granny’s and my aunt would take care of me before she picked me up on Saturdays. In between some of these days mom decided to have me named but she wanted the lady who looked after me, to name me. She wanted to thank her in her own way. The lady called me “Rinku” and that was put in the records. Rinku is a common name from the state she belonged to- Bengal.

4

I’m one of those people who didn’t like their name initially. But as I grew up and Mom told me this story of naming my name, I was filled with gratitude towards that lady and for my mom too. That lady for her unconditional love and Mom for being grateful to her and showing it in a unique way. As I grew up, started to like my name, short, sweet and crisp. It means ‘Sweet’ or ‘Sweet Thing”.

They say, a rose is a rose is a rose. Does not matter if it was not named as rose. But I’m glad that my name is a tribute to a good lady for her kindness and love. I have never met her or tried to find her ever but now it looks like I must.

Yes after writing this post , I’m going to call Mom.

most_popular_female_names

A Book You learned From-Taj (T.N Murari)

“Taj” was given to me by Naomi one summer while we were living in Allahabad. Though I’m not a voracious reader but as I read the book, I fell in love with it. The characters, the storytelling , the beautiful amalgamation of factual and fictional happenings captivated my heart. Even now several years down the line I still hold the memories of those feelings that I went through while reading that book.

To my surprise, I fell so in love with this book that I got the book copied at a local shop and carried with me. Something in it struck a chord in me and it would take months for me to know what was it. I was born and raised in the city of Taj. I had seen all these forts and monuments a hundred times during my childhood. I could visualise almost every single detail mentioned by the author about the forts and all the delicate artisan work done during 1700s. The book had told the ever-lasting love story of  Mumtaz and Shahjehan in a very subtle manner. Right from their childhood, how they met, fell in love and promised to love each other through thick and thin. It also adds a piece of fiction in it by adding a character who is close to Mumtaz and from whose point of view we see the world.

Pure Love

Pure Love

We come to know what Mumtaz feels for Shahjehan and how every time he is out on a battle, she accompanies him on a chariot taking all her young children with her, so many times even while she was pregnant. Shahjehan too loved her like no one else could even when he had a huge task of taking care of his empire. The author makes that delicate balance of facts and fictions so well that you could feel the intensity of the lovers in that era. It almost comes to life for me because I have seen all those small little nooks and corners of Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri where this love happened in real times. While I soak myself up in history and in the love of the Emperor and the Empress, I also know how vibrant and important my city was at that point in time.

The political scenarios, the culture, the economics, the trade and the intense love is depicted exquisite and precise. I love this book for its depiction of sheer love, sacrifice and honor of two human beings towards each other at the times when emperors were busy filling up their harems and expanding their empires. I’m basically an ardent lover of historical facts and books written on them.

This book has been a thorough pleasure to read while you let your imagination go back a few hundred years back into time. Shahjehan and Mumtaz’s eternal love stood the test of time through centuries, even though the Empress died at a young age of 36, Shahjehan never remarried and spent rest of his life making this monument. Legend says, after Taj was made, he died looking at it , remembering the love of his life.

Gist of the story is to love with all your might for you never know how soon this life would get over and one would be left with only memories.

Love in the times of an Empire

Love in the times of an Empire

Things about Summer

s1

Morning walks, evening walks, no winter clothes, frappes, icecreams , summer dresses, cool breeze ….

Wow, summer is my favorite time of the year…okay spring is the best one actually! Summers back in India are like scorching hot. But I still like them better than the cold of nothern India where I grew up. In Assam where I originally belong to, the summers are wet because the monsoon starts in April already! So the memories of rainy, breezy, and cloudy summers during my collge years are something that I fondly remember!

s2

Since we have moved to this part of the world, its been different and nice too. The winters are like bad but luckily I have not yet spent any winters here so this year its going to be my first. I dont like them…my husband always asks me what will happen to me if we were to move to mid-west or east of this country sometime!! I’m sure I will learn to enjoy the snowfall sooner than he fears!

cocktail-summer-wallpaper

The onset of summer in California is marked with beautiful cherry blossoms and scores of other pretty flowers in the parks and on the streetsides.You know its summer when sunset is after 8pm and you have plenty of time to do your stuff. The feel of the cool breeze energises me while I take my evening walks now with my son and Ani joinning us on weekends. I can hear the birds chirping away at all times except in the noon when they too take a break and hide under the thick branches of the trees.

strawberry-ice-cream

 

Summers also reminds me of the onset of rains back in home. Back then , it used to be hot in Agra but childhood never feels it and we would eagerly wait for our school vacations during summers.

s5

I hope my affair with summer will carry on even if we have to move to a colder part of the country! Till then let me enjoy the summers of California which lasts almost throughout 8 months!

Last but not the least, a drive in the summers could let you see a lot more colors than anytime in the year!

Last

Simple Things in Life

Simple-Things

Honestly, a few good friends and some good place to spend the lazy afternoons…thats what life’ s pleasures are all about.

large

Life’s treasures lie in simples things indeed. Mom’s food, a simple cup of her tea,sitting in the porch sipping it watching rains, giving grains to sparrows and hens at home…

the-simple-things-jai-johnson

Watching a random flick on TV in the afternoon when alone, making that special cup of tea on weekends for both of us when Riaan is taking a nap, going for an evening walk and looking at the clouds and talking about future.

1234

Finding the phone number of an old friend and calling her and catching up with old times, wishing good day to a fellow jogger, smelling the rose on my morning walk, watching the clouds fly by in the evening sky, stopping by and talking to the old lady in the neighbourhood.

apple-pie

 

Truly, life’s treasures lie in simple things. The very fact that life is short but sweet makes it even more important to love its each moment.

Cheers!

friends

 

A Friend- Week 7

Aditya Clicking pics April 2013 , San Francisco

Aditya Clicking pics
April 2013 , San Francisco

My first memories of Aditya is of middle school back in Agra, in the 90’s. An irritating, lanky, weird, bi-spectacle d teen who had poker straight hair. He was in a different class but always was trying to meddle into my group of friends. I didn’t like him much because of his bitter straightforward attitude and his silly talks. He would not allow anyone else to talk when in a group and surprisingly even engaged teachers with his nonsensical philosophies! Nonetheless, he was well into my friends circle in a couple of months! He lived away from where we were staying but he would bicycle his way to play with us almost every evening.

Fast forward, 20 years, I come to live in Delhi and just when Facebook was invented. I got to be in touch with so many friends including Aditya. And because of the sheer coincidence of living just a few miles away in the same area of the city, soon we decided to meet over lunch followed by a movie. Aditya was not a crazy teen anymore and we both sat and chatted for several hours sharing each other’s live’s happenings over last 2 decades. He had become a Human Right’s Lawyer and was an active LGBT leader in India. He travels around the world to speak in seminars and meetings for the same.

Since then he has been there as a dear friend, helping , supporting and guiding me through the most difficult times of my life. It was he who made me finalize my decision when I walked out on my marriage. I remember very clearly when he said, ” Rinks if you never leave this rotten marriage of yours, you will never come to know what you could have gotten on the other side of this.” I’m so glad, I understood what he meant by his one sentence. I’m so glad that I have my soulmate by my side now and my life could not have been better. For me, life has taken a complete 180 degree turn and words like love, trust, faith, care, pamper, appreciation, affection , adulation, respect and fair has become meaningful.

From time to time I turn on to Aditya for advice, suggestions and to tell him how my new life is shaping up. He is happy for me and we catch up every once in a while whenever I’m in Delhi. He too is glad that I have found my peace and that his advice and efforts to reinstate my dignity has paid off. We may have grown up and lead our own individual lives making mature decisions and being good human beings but in our hearts we still remain the teens the way we were, in school !

I’m so glad that I met Aditya again after so many years and that life has completed a full circle since we were in middle school. Aditya helps me in soul-searching and like always has answers to all the things that I throw at him. Though sometimes the answers are silly , nonetheless it teaches me to take life less seriously at times.

He has been a thorough gentleman, a dear friend and wonderful human being.

Here’s to fun, friendship, school-times and gratitude!

 Aditya at Barbeque @ Parag's April 2013 ( Palo Alto)

Barbeque @ Parag’s
April 2013 ( Palo Alto)

***I start this gratitude challenge following an inspiration by a fellow blogger Day-9 / week 1 – 52 Weeks of Gratitude | Me and My Random Thoughts by Bikram.

Nothin’ But A Good Time

20130620_192343

After 18 long years duties , responsibilities and obligations,  Roslynn quit her life that failed to move her anymore. A life which was only full of commitments. Commitments to several other lives except her own.

Now every single day life taught her new things. She traveled to new places and met new people. The sun welcomed her every morning and challenged her to live up her life happily. Now she could look at the moon and the dark sky with glittering diamonds for as long as she wished.

So there she was…finally quitting for being someone she was not supposed to be! With her knight in shining armor Roslynn was living life in her own terms. Each day is a celebration of her independence. She can get up anytime in the morning, she can do anything she likes to do as the first thing in the morning. Roslynn never liked cooking but now that she is not forced into it, she likes to experiment with food and has started liking cooking for her guy. This guy thoroughly enjoys whatever she puts together for a meal.

Roslynn loved the colors on a canvas…she loved to paint. She can now paint whenever she wanted and it really soothes her soul and makes her calmer,  quieter and happier. Morning or dusk are reserved for taking a walk across the neighborhood. She loves to explore the wild, the forests, birds, wildflowers, dogs and the hillocks Hyderabad has to offer.

She also wants to explore with her lens. Capturing the timeless moments in her camera so that they remain intact in her memories of good times in the years to come. There is more to come…in the coming days. As of now Roslyn wants to spend time painting, cooking , photography and just do nothing sometimes. She wants to sleep and get up on her own, she wants solitude and peace doing her own things.She does not want her life to be driven by other people’s life.

Last but not the least, she wants to have a wooden cabin by a gurgling stream near a mountain so that she is a bit more away from the mad rush of life cities offer. She does run to such getaways every once in 3 months. She would love to own a pet dog ,a birdhouse in her sit out and do some farming. She would love to go for an early morning walk up in the meadows and watch the sun rise and flowers open up with the breaking of dawn.

Roslynn has achieved most of her peace in life….it did take some gruesome years nonetheless the wait was worth it!

Archives

Categories

Exoticrinku

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 21 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 2,389 hits