Let the countdown begin!

Before its time to say adieu 2014, a quick recap of how I lived it 🙂
Traveled to some beautiful places
Places
Read some awesome books

Books

Started and discontinued fitness regime 😦

Fitness

Met some new people (and a lots on WP, thank you!)

new people

New Pppl

Loved, and got loved
my babies
Fell in love all over again

love

Got bitten by the creative bug

creative

Reconnected with some old friends

reconnect

Started and discontinued fitness regime (again) 😦 (>_<)

Fitness

Missed some dear ones

missed

Got little better at cooking
food
Thanks to every single one of you for being a part of it and making it awesome!!

thanks

Looking forward to read more, travel more, live, love and laugh more in 2015 🙂 🙂 🙂
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How much is OK?

“A few drinks are OK– but not so many!”

“A few minutes delay is OK– but not so much!”

“Spending some money is OK – but not so much!”

Whenever I hear such sentences, I wonder how one can really quantify those ‘a few’ and ‘not so much’. How can you possibly know how much to stop at?

It’s really situational I think. You cannot set bars so generically at things that have nothing in common. The standards for ‘a few’ and ‘not so much’ that’s really OK shouldn’t be based on someone’s experience & definitely shouldn’t be the same for all situations. In fact, you shouldn’t even borrow it from one of your own past experiences for the future situations.

The same applies to interpersonal relationships and friendships. Not only the times change, people change as well. While it is important not to misunderstand and act impulsive as these relations are a part of your being, it isn’t fair to mistrust your inner voice & slacken your self-respect at the same time. Try to assess the situation before deciding how much of anything is really okay. Trust me; you would know it more than anyone else.

This does not hold true only for situations within your comfort zone, but also outside it – like at your workplace. Be yourself – do not emulate or do things out of your character to impress your boss, show your commitment and be dedicated, be confident & rely on your skills to impress your employer, give and earn respect – you know it all. But probably what most of us forget, is amidst respecting the job, the employer, co-workers, subordinates, etc., – respecting your self is equally important too. Don’t just let someone spoil your day or your work or demotivate you unnecessarily in the name of professionalism. Although you should not take it personally and ignore the trivial or insignificant matters as much as possible – but you MUST stand up for yourself when wrongly accused for no fault of yours. A friend of mine once said – one needs to take all the shit from the boss if they want to survive and grow at the work place. Well, I really don’t buy that!

If only a few drinks can be okay but too much can harm – wouldn’t too much criticism & unjust treatment at work harm as well? Like you should know when to stop drinking, you should also know how much unethical and unfair behavior to be tolerated. What I am trying to say here is – since you know yourself best – know when the ‘OK’s’ of your life cross their limit to become ‘but not so much’ & learn to say STOP and help yourself!Image

“The Dragon’s Loyalty Award” – is this for real??

This great story-teller Mike awarded my blog for The Dragon’s Loyalty Award and I’m thrilled, excited & happppppy (those extra ‘p’s would tell you how happy I am) Thanks a ton Mike! His blog at http://eyedancers.wordpress.com/ is one those blogs I always enjoy reading.

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The rules for this award are:

Display the  Award Certificate on your website.

Announce your win with a written post and link to whoever presented your award.

Present 15 awards to deserving bloggers.

Drop them a comment to tip them off after you have liked them in the post.

 

Post 7 interesting things about yourself.

 
7 interesting things about me, huh…that’s easy…!Wait! no, not that easy because I am busy smiling & thinking about this award I got from last 5minutes 🙂 Okay let me write them anyhow.

 

1. I am head-over-heels in love with animation movies. My love for Disney & Pixar knows no bounds ♥ The capturing, amazing, beautiful, timeless movies they make are simply beautiful. I enjoy watching them over and over and over. Some of my favorite movies are: Up, Ice age, Tinker Bell, Tarzan, Shrek, Ratatouille, Finding Nemo, The lion king & many more. Actually I love all of them!!

2. I love traveling ♥ Have visited many places in India but been overseas just once, would love to see the rest of the world too.

3. One of my wishes from the bucket list is to go backpacking alone to a beautiful European destination ♥

4. I recently experienced a ‘dream-come-true’ moment in my professional life, when I finally got a ‘Creative Writer’ designation at work 🙂

5. My life is like a fairy tale. How? A loving & caring family, beautiful & intelligent siblings, loving, understanding & caring boyfriend ♥ But the cherry on the cake are my three musketeers – my three little nephews : Krish, Aashu & Nemo ♥

6. I often think I was a tree in my previous life. Because I go crazy & get this strong craving to write/sketch/scribble/doodle or paint something when I see paper & pencil. I find myself completely lost when a Flute (my brother plays flute extremely well) or Guitar(my boyfriend plays it pretty well) plays nearby. Moreover, Green (actually Tinker bell green) is one of my most favorite colors 😀

7. Lastly, no one really knows me (except for my mum, of course). So whoever claims to know me well are living in a fantasy & are often completely surprised, amused, amazed, shocked even, at times to see this different, totally unexpected & unknown side of me popping up suddenly 😉

Phew! that sure was difficult… I have never written so much about myself ever in my life.

I have read some really cool posts on the following blogs. So my 15 nominations are as below, hope you enjoy reading them as I much as I do:

http://foodcourt.wordpress.com/

http://adailydrama.wordpress.com/

http://georgeweaver.wordpress.com/

http://juliegreenart.com/

http://lunchsketch.com/

http://joshidaniel.com/

http://rickmallery.wordpress.com/

http://simpletombornhigh.com/

http://miraclecorporation.wordpress.com/

http://cristianmihai.net/

http://kavisionz.wordpress.com/

http://cruisingthroughmylife.wordpress.com/

http://erwindrose.wordpress.com/

http://laurasusanneyochelson.com/

http://cappywrites.com/

Thank you everyone! With the hump day almost done, hope you all have a smooth sail to weekend & followed by a fantastic weekend. Stay blessed!!

Beautiful Luna

Luna, Moon – Earth’s natural satellite: The moon rise today was beautiful! Here’s a collage of the images I clicked (excuse me for the clarity of the pix) The view was brilliant from my window, & I couldn’t help but click quickly. The whole scene of slender feathery leaves of the coconut tree swaying in the gentle breeze against the moon, slicing through – as viewed from my camera – was worth capturing.

The last one is my fav. Care to have a ‘Sliced orange moon pie’ for dessert? 😉

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Manifestation of beauty

The wonders of nature & its beauty can be seen all around. Even in the simplest of things. The vibrant colors, the magnificent patterns, the artistic designs are all simply brilliant!

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Have you ever stopped to wonder how beautiful this cabbage looks with that spiral pattern?

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Or the ripples on water?

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Or the beautiful autumn leaves?

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It is all around you …you can touch & see the beauty.

Look at some of the cool patterns – they are simply beautiful.

group

A part of an object is an extension of it & inherits all the characteristics of the object itself. So when something is a part of a beautiful object, it’s evident that ‘that’ part  is beautiful too, isn’t it? Just re-iterating what you already know…

You’ are a part of mystical, powerful & beautiful nature!

Have a great week ahead! Happy monday 🙂

Handsome Big Cats

Royal Stripey….Richard Parker?

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White Bengal Tiger

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Bannerghatta National Park, around 22 KM south of Bangalore, India is a home to these beautiful & rare animals. The Park houses Lion & Tiger Reserves of these massive, roaring big cats. The numbers are decreasing in an alarming rate, hope the remaining species grows & lives long & not falling into the extinct category like some of other members of their species. Loved watching & clicking them then, planning to visit them sometime soon.

Camouflaged |Ƌηğµ@ɠĕ

Camouflaged |Ƌηğµ@ɠĕ

The ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphs, the computer’s binary language, the codes & ciphers used by Government & Defense organizations, etc., all explain the need of a secret language by various social groups in our world.

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Remember when as a kid, you had your very own ‘secret language’ which you & only a select group of friends shared?  Whenever you wanted to talk about a particular student, teacher, subject or anything for that matter, you could happily converse in your coded language without having to worry about anyone hearing or rather understanding it. I clearly remember mine. My friends & I used this one code very often & it’s still dear to me 🙂 ’1/Cos C’ did you get it? For those of you all who loved Trigonometry like me, would have guessed it by now. Nevertheless, let me decode it for you – the Secant or Sec function is 1/Cosine or Cos, so ‘1/Cos C’ becomes ‘Sec C’ 😀 Needless to say it was a hush-hush when the Math. Teacher was around.

Another favorite was ‘Mercury’. As we know its an element of periodic table. How it found place in our secret language?

Hint 1: the term Mercury was used by us when saw a good looking boy in school.

Hint 2(this will spill the beans, still): the symbol for Mercury in periodic table is ‘Hg’.

Still didn’t get it? OK I know it sounds nerdy but it actually isn’t, its funny – whenever we saw a Handsome guy in the school campus & didn’t wish other girls to see him we would nudge each other secretly saying ‘Mercury’ The secret grin on our faces with that word, always left the other girls puzzled and ambiguous & we absolutely loved that! The unrealized advantage of this highly confidential language was that we were actually studying, remembering, and revising what we learned at school. And further brainstorming, thinking & creatively adding to the vocabulary of our secret language! Obviously studying (at least for this purpose) was fun!!

I had a few friends who worked with the Sales & Marketing team for the company’s U.S. clients. They had to avidly use phonetic alphabet on most of their calls. The epitome of this interesting practice was its usage otherwise. Once I was at a coffee shop with my friend Tia. Her ex boyfriend walked in. Immediately she blurted out “Gosh! She is the third girl he is hooked up with in just 2 months of our break-up! Alpha-Sierra-Sierra!” I looked at them, wondering how could Tia possibly learn this third girl’s name so soon. Looking at my perplexed face, she chuckled & said “It’s ‘S’ as in Sierra… and you never believed in the advantages of learning phonetics.” The next instant we burst out laughing.

Code-decode, encrypt-decrypt, cipher-decipher call it whatever – has always succeeded in getting one’s attention absolutely undivided. It simply proves over & over that human brain is an incredible thing, has evolved over the time, amazingly, interestingly each time & still continues to do so.

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The Love-hate relationship

Damn! My elbow pushed the glass of water kept on the desk & tumbled over the sheets spread across. The sheets were the sketches I had prepared after Titanic efforts and then, there I was holding the dripping sheets with a mix of emotions – irritation, anger, anxiety, tension, hopelessness…Darn!  I hate water!!

Buried neck deep in work for long hours, running around all day, pushing & making my way through the crowd at Metro & finally being home after a long-long journey. The first thing I do? Needless to say, help myself with a glass of water – feels like heaven, soothing the parched throat…. Ah! I love water!!

Hmm… so it boils down to the fact that I have an everlasting love-hate relationship with the Oxygen & Hydrogen atoms.

Love-as-Graceful-as-Rain1

The divine smell of wet soil with the first rain of the year, a long walk in the light drizzle, a cool sip after a spicy bite.The beaches, rivers & cascades. The hot shower in chilly winters & cold in burning summers. The rain drops & ripples in the puddles. The artistic dew drops on glass blades …things like this and I’m insanely in love with Water.

Now for the hate-story :

I’m on my way for something important & it rains… it not only ruins my hair, clothes & every damn thing in my bag but also my day. When there’s no water in the faucet – can’t tell you how irritating it gets. It rains day & night – messing up the roads, the transport systems, etc. The zigzag rain deprives the laundry to be hung on the clothesline outside. And the moist & damp weather restrains them from drying inside the house. Oh there’s more – in case your denims get drenched, you get to use them again only when the rain subsides. The time it takes to dry is directly proportional to the damp stink it accumulates.

Nevertheless, I enjoy this love-hate relationship. It adds variety to the otherwise dry life. And why wouldn’t it? Water – it’s the very essence of life.

Next time it rains – remember when the sunlight pierces the raindrop, look up above & follow the rainbow – you may find the pot of gold at the end of it! You never know.

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Mile Sur Mera Tumhara

I was searching some material for my animation studies on Youtube when I came across ‘it’. I was at the start of a circle again and it began…a journey into the past. A faint smile appeared on my face, something twitched at the heart, and my childhood days were back. I wanted to go back to that time and hold all the memories close to my heart. The television industry of India in late eighties was one of my prized memories from childhood. I haven’t been so happy and emotional at the same time.

I sat for hours searching for all that I could get my hands on. The Door Darshan anthem, Ek-anek commercial, Malgudi days, He-man and of course Mile sur mera tumhara. Oh how much I love them all! I must have been in primary (in 2 or 3 std, maybe) when these were aired; all the memories came rushing with a great force. How we all used to wait impatiently for the Door Darshan to start. Unlike today, where there are n numbers of channels, you just had the Door Darshan then… the very first of its kind, as we all know. So of course one can guess the amount of pleasure, fun, eagerness, excitement it planted in you. We being toddlers were not allowed to touch the T.V. so we were the most impatient and eager of the lot. I remember we had a black & white TV set and it was beautiful!  I remember very few houses had TV sets and those who had, had b&w sets. Usually there would be a TV set at one house and all the neighborhood would gather there…that’s the unity and integrity that Door Darshan taught! Then there it goes, at somewhere about 5 or 5.30pm, the Door Darshan would begin!  The music still rings in my ears 🙂 giving a nostalgic feeling.

Door Darshan would be on for sometime in the morning or afternoon as well but only for some time. We would be either off to school or sleeping so I don’t remember much of that. Whatever would be aired on DD (as it was called) we would sit glued and watch without missing even a tiny bit. Be it news or commercial or serial or whatever. There was DD news, there was He-man, Giant Robot, Chitrahar, Ramayan, Mahabharat, Surabhi, Jungle book (I loved that), Potli baba ki and the most loved educational commercial, national integrity commercials… and soo many more. Buland bharat ki buland tasveer, hamara bajaj… Jab main chhota ladka tha, badi shararat karta tha… and I love you Rasna…Lijjat papad…Phew!! I remember them all… wow! I remember most of the TV commercials, most of the program title tracks and story lines and characters and I bet I would remember them all my life. Unlike today’s commercials which no one would remember after 25-30 years simply because there are many of the kind today. The uniqueness of DD is just one of its kinds. DD would be on only for a certain time and then would be go off air (I don’t know what would it be termed as because today all the channels run 247!) Those were the days! I remember every bit of that pleasure, that excitement, it has me euphoric. Everything DD aired at that time was meaningful, thoughtful, taught us something, and gave extreme pleasure!

The television world today can never create the same magic. Its just a thing to cherish. Of course I thank a million to the technology today as I got all that stuff on internet. But it is very truly said ‘old is gold’ and the coming generations would never experience that. I know every generation has something of its own and something to take with it but I just feel technology has made it all too simple, which is good in a way but you can’t deny some excitement is missing in it. My generation which has witnessed how life changed with the turning point in technology will only be too blissful to have experienced both the sides by standing at the turning point. I am in a great mood since yesterday and I am sure this elated feeling is going to last for a long time. And of course this same feeling will come to me when I’ll think about DD, even after many years from now. Today there may be hundreds of channels but it would never give me the same feeling as DD used to. And I am more than sure it has the same effect on all those who have grown up seeing DD, to remember, to feel, to see and re-live those wonderful days.

Meera

16th Century, Rajasthan

Meera, born in the royal Rajput family of Merat. At 18, married to Raja Bhoj, the crown prince of Mewad. As a child, she watched a marriage procession and asked her mother who her husband was. Her mother, pointed to the statue of Krishna, never thinking how seriously Meera is going to take that. That day on, Krishna became her friend, her lover, her husband, her world, her life. The princess having everything at her say, knew nothing, needed nothing, other than being in thoughts of Krishna, whom she adored more than anything else in the world. Having married and moved to Mewad with her husband, Meera still considered Krishna as her lover, her husband. Lost in the divine love of Krishna, Meera forgets her lawfully wedded husband, forgets her family, and forgets the whole world. Doesn’t care for what she’s supposed to do and what she’s expected to do. She was accused of crossing the “Kul ki maryada”, having brought shame to the family. She was taunted, tortured n accused every time. Meera still couldn’t keep herself from thinking about & being lost in the love of her beloved krishna. She started referring him as her husband, publicly, through her poems (Meera, has composed about 5000 poems, and is considered as one of the Asia’s greatest poets) which aroused the rage & anger among the royal family of Raja Bhoj. Just imagine this is the 16th century, a married woman adores a man, other than her husband (Of course, Meera was lost in the love of Lord Krishna.. but for the society, her thinking about another man, be it a God, is a Sin!!)

Within 4 years of her marriage, her husband was killed in a battle. Meera, a born rebel, refused to commit Sati, only to face the rage of her in-laws and the society. Many attempts on her life were made by her in-laws, her brother-in-law, the new king of Mewad, sends her a glass of poison.

To this, Meera sings:

“Vish ka pyala, Ranaji ne bheja, peevat Meera haasi re ||”

(From the famous peom – “Pag ghunghroo baandh Meera nachi re|| “)

Its then, that Meera leaves the house of her in-laws. She then seeks shelter at her father’s place, ironically, where once again she’s rejected and insulted.

“Log kahe Meera huee baawri, baap kahe kulnaashi re||”

Actually speaking Meera was a silent rebel. It’s definitely not easy for someone to go against the wishes of one’s family, or society, especially when everyone else looks up to you. She was a princess, she was accountable for every move she makes, and she was answerable to her subjects. She didn’t say anything but her belief was enough for people to believe she’s a threat to the society, a shame for the family, for its hollow pride, for its image. Can’t imagine how did she manage to be so different from others, in that era, when a man thought for a woman, she wasn’t even supposed to think for herself! She was born & brought up to think she can’t lead her life, the way she wants but the way the man of the family wants. She can’t have her own decisions, she can’t think for herself. It takes a lot of courage to live a life such as this. How did Meera manage to stand up for what she believed, even when her own family was against her? Even when they disowned her? Even when they wanted to kill her? And come to think of this, who would think your own family plans to poison you? In spite of knowing, in her hands, she holds her death; she picks us the glass of poison, just for her love for Krishna!

Meera is, of course, one of the greatest poet & saint Hindustan is blessed with, what I adore most about her, is her brave spirit, in spite being a woman (of the 16th century), she did what she believed, she lived for what she believed, she rebelled for what she believed, she died for what she believed, no matter how many hurdles her path had, no matter her own people didn’t stand by her side. Now that’s what I call a perfect life, no sorry, no regrets. You are accountable for your life; you are responsible for your decisions. Hats off to that courage, to that dedication, to that spirit!

– Just believing your beliefs isn’t enough, one needs to have the courage to stand for what they believe, no matter if you are the only one walking that path.

Familiar Stranger

 
The eyes that say so much
With just a mere look
The touch that’s so gentle
Yet so strong
You’re my Stranger & still I like you!
 
The overpowering fragnance
When you’re near
Your words like some
magic in my ears
You’re my Stranger & still i like you!
 
Its only been some days
That I know you
But why do I think of you as
Some memory from an old dream
Hey familiar Stranger, I think I love you!
 
 

Main

Bade shehron ki badi baatein
Shehar ki is bheed mein
Bhaag daud bhari zindagi mein
Tanha chalti main

Dhoopbhari lambi sadkon par,
Gaadiyon ki lambi qatarein
Laakhon chehro mein
Kisiko dhoondhti main

Naye chehre, nayi baatein
Naye din, nayi raatein
Laakhon logo ke beech bhi
Tanha akeli main

Ghadi ke kaanton par saans leti
Khud hi khudko sambhalti-samjhati
Din ka har ek pal gujarti
Tanha akeli main

Dil me kaee khwaishe hain
Aur khuli aankhon me sapne
Ummedon ki zameen bhi hain
Buss tanha akeli main

Friends Forever … !!!

   

First day at school, Grumpy faced n tears in the eyes. Too hesitant to talk to anyone Sitting in a corner.. alone. She walked to me, Twinkle in the eyes –  a smile on the lips “Friends?” she asked.
I looked around the corner, the world seemed to be too busy to even look at me
And oh someone noticed me. She gave me a handkerchief, opened her bag n gave me a chocolate. I wiped my tears away, smiled and said “Friends!”
On Sunday we had lots of fun. Ate ice-cream, chocolates all day long. Went to the zoo, watched cartoon movies, till mom forced me to the bed.
I forgot to finish my homework, and i was long lost in my world of dreams.
“Class, show me the homework”, said the teacher the following day.
And I filmed the flashback Sunday, the ice-cream, the chocolate, the zoo, and the cartoons…. and heard the teacher yelling, “Anyone without homework, goes out of my class and kneels down in the corridor”
She looked at me, and just by the look on my face, she knew it!
The Teacher went to her bench she stood up and said “Sorry teacher, I forgot to do my homework”. We were kneeling down in the corridor, & I said “I know you have done your homework and you are still here bcoz of me, why?”
She just smiled and said, “Remember? we are friends?”
It was the graduation day. We all were very happy. I told her i have more than one
reason today to be happy. Secrets shared & told her about the guy i like.
She was so happy for me, when I told her he has asked me out today.
We were together till the evening, when she dropped me by the pub
for my first and grand date
He had said he will come by 6, it was 6.40 now … i waited
thought maybe he’s stuck with some work. Let me be patient n not over-react
It was now 7 in my watch … I went to the restroom n started crying
I called her up and cried n cried n cried, till she said, “Hang on am cuming there!”
I hadn’t stopped crying till the next morning. She just listened to me throughout the night, without even interrupting me once. She walked me to the door
I turned n said, “Thanks, friend!” She said “Remember whenever you need me,
I’ll always be there for you”.
It was my first day at work, and i was running late! Damn…
My door bell rang just in time to have her by the door
“What are you still doing in here? You getting late for work!
Pick up your stuff quickly, and come, am waiting in the car”
I always had her by my side, in ups and downs, through thick n thin
Its been a wonderful life, with such a friend by my side.
I look back at the past, with smile on my face n tear in my eye.
how much I miss her today n every single day with
only memories in my mind…
I may not see her everyday today, we don’t even talk often…
I pray for her to be happy always and i know she does it too…
Life can get easy n can get tougher.
But as we always know and believe
We are Friends Forever …. !!!!

Chhoone ko abhi Aasman kaee baaki hai….

 
 
 
Tanha main akela, chal pada hoon yahan,
Durr hai manjil, aur raasta hai mushkil,
Phir bhi ai dil tu na ghabrana,
Jeetenge hum hai poora yakin,
Na saathi hai na koi sahara,
Par isi rehgujar se tujhe hai chalna,
 
Mushkil hain raahein, to kya gham hai?
Tanha hai safar, to kya gham hai?
Manjil hai durr, to kya gham hai?
Sathi na koi, toh kya gham hai?
Haunsale hai buland yeh kya kam hai?
 
Thak jaaye jo chalte-chlate tu
Gardan uthake uss badal ko dekh
Aankhen uthakar uss suraj ko dekh
Baahein failaker uss hawa ko chhoo le
Saanson me phir bhar le usse,
 
Nayi ummeedein, naya haunsla lekar ke
Phir chal pad apni manjil pe tu
Haar na maane jo kabhi, woh hum hai!
Rukna na jaane kabhi, woh hum hai!
 
Inn rahon me paana bahut kuch hai kyunki….
Chhoone ko abhi aasman kaee baki hai……!!!
 
-YOGiNi 🙂