Sunday, October 30, 2011


Good evening folks! It's been sometime since I visited this spot. A lot has happened. Remember the the good news that happened at work some days ago that I couldn't share with you? Well, now I can. I got a promotion! Woo hoo! Happy Diwali !!! Now I need to step it up and work hard, which I am planning to. It was a good weekend. VA experienced some snow this Sat. It's a rarity for October. Sad to know that did not work. Banking on Don 2 now. Had fun at a friend's house on Fri, Sat. and Sunday practicing for a dance show. Shared some things that were bothering me for a long time with them. Not sure If I spoke too much. In any case, it's too late now.

I'm busy now. Can I ignore you some other time?
I bet your brain feels as good as new, seeing that you've never used it.
I would ask you how old you are but I know you can't count that high.

Sometimes when we are familiar with people, we pass insults like the ones mentioned above, just to joke around. You never know when these jokes turn into hurtful comments and make the other person angry. There is a fine line there. It is easy to get carried way, while you are in a group giving the insults. This can also be called bullying. I am watching this show on Indian TV called Bigg Boss. In this show, there are around 16 inmates locked in the same house. They constantly insult each other and India considers this entertainment. Well, it is! I am now hooked on to it. It is entertainment, as long as the insults are not towards us. Someone else is bearing all this. This show teaches ALL the wrong things like group-ism, bullying, insulting, degrading etc. One good thing is, the person who survives through all this, definitely comes out stronger. At what cost though? The person will not have any friends left. Most of the remarks made on the show, have some truth to it and therefore is very hurtful. On the show, they are doing it for money and fame. But if one copies this in real life, it is bound to back fire BIG time! This makes me wonder if being fake is the solution to maintain peace? The answer unfortunately is "yes".  You might think that you are helping the other person by speaking the truth, but in reality the other person does not want to hear it. From my experience, do not say hurtful things to anyone, even as a joke,  however close you are to that person. Bottom line -treat others the way you want to be treated.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Divan

Happy Diwali folks! Yet again a beautiful day here in VA today. Took half a day off from work this morning to take my car in for inspection and then attend Rohit's Halloween presentation at school. He did a good job and made us proud! These little angles grow up too fast. As parents all we want is a bright future for them. Did not achieve much at work either. Enjoyed talking with a few friends, got organised and it was time to come back home. It's going to be a long day tomorrow.

I copied this picture from Wikipedia. A divan is a piece of couch-like sitting furniture.What many of you might not know is that the Divan is originally from Persia. My mother is such a creative person. She has this ability to observe and learn. She then implements what she has learnt in her own way. I remember, she introduced the Divan to our family when I was in the 5th grade or so. She had read about it somewhere, and decided to custom make one for our house. She was so passionate about this piece of furniture, that she would change the sheets on it very often and decorate it will colorful pillows. I spent a lot of time on this divan. An average divan can seat at least 4 people. When my friends came over we all gathered around this divan. Divan can be placed on the floor as shown in the picture above or can be a raised structure. Usually, it has oblong shaped pillows on either sides. I would say that it is a comfortable seating arrangement. A divan sparks up any corner of a room. It has a strange warmth to it. Most Indians can associate happy "tea & pakoda" times with their family and friends on this couch. Every time I visit a fabric store here in the US, I get inspired to have a colorful divan in my house. I have the whole ambiance planned out for this in my head. I just need to act on it. Next time, make it a "Divan" time folks!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Diye jalte hain

Good evening friends. Friday was quiet for me. After gyming came home and started watching "Bigg Boss". It was fun to watch the 'hijda" clap a lot. The creative team of this reality show definitely know their audience well. Now I am addicted. Sat. I enjoyed a pre diwali bash in the evening along with some friends. Lot of dancing. People went berserk when they played the song "ringa ringa". Good food, good chai, good friends. Can't ask of more. Sunday morning was mostly spent on the phone catching up with family gossip from India. Evening was so fruitful. I planted some mums in my paradise. Also, put some solar lights on either side of the pathway. By far, the best decision for my yard. It looks heavenly. Couple of lights are not working. :( Hopefully, I can exchange them. Posting some pics. for you all to see.

It's almost Diwali time and what better way to start the week? I have always been attracted to dim lighting, be it in a restaurant, a hotel lobby, by the pool or at home. I feel, it can make or break moods. In the movie Rab ne bana di jodi, SRK uses lighting to say say I love you to Anushka. Lighting is also associated with romance. A perfect romantic date often has imaginative and creative lighting ideas combined with distinctive and unique touches that can make your personal event an unique and memorable experience. Lucky are those who have had the chance to be on such a date. Add soothing music to this scenario and we Scorpios will be so happy.  I have noticed that whenever I want some "alone time" escaping into my room, switching on some soothing music and lighting some lavender scented candles works so well for me. I can come to a state of calmness. I have tried practicing yoga too during this time. But I could not enjoy it as I found it to be too slow. I like the cardio related activities better. Of course, dim light does not work all the time for me. I have to see daylight to make me cheerful. I found that in the US the use of tube lights is not very common. My romance with lighting started when I moved to this country. I like visiting the lighting section in the stores. There are so many types of fixtures available, that one gets all confused. That's exactly what I faced today when I went o choose the outdoor lights. I had to make a choice between my budget and my favorite type. Why is that, we always get attracted to the most expensive one?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Small talk

Namaskar doston! Busy,busy day. I was in all day meeting today. After work I attended a happy hour organised by our company to thank us for all the hard work and overtime we put in, in the last few months, preparing for a Government audit. The food was so good, I ate till I got sick in my stomach. I dragged myself into the gym. Managed to get an hour's worth of exercise. I was not happy. It was better than nothing. Yep, it was bound to happen. Ash now as her wax statue in Madam Tussuad's. Sigh!

Lol! at the cartoon above. Have you been in an uncomfortable situation where even tough there are so many people around you, there is pin drop silence? What do you do in such a situation? You make small talk. I detest small talk. It's so annoying. It has "I am putting up with you, because I am stuck with you" written all over it. But sometimes that is the only way to break the silence. Some examples are: Are you going for a walk? When you are clearly talking a walk on a walking path. It's so hot today. Oh, really? I did not notice that the weather is only 90 degrees F. Duhh.. So then why do people make small talk? There are a few different reasons why. First, the  most obvious reason is to break an uncomfortable silence. Another reason is to fill time. Some people do it just to be polite. You can't sit in a corner in a party by yourself. That is considered rude. You have come there upon an invitation, and are expected to mingle. Also, people use small talk while waiting for something. Like in a doctor's office, in a line to catch the bus or train, etc. It's not always easy to carry on small talk. You have to watch for hints or clues from the other person's body language and know when to stop. You soon find out if you click or don't click. If it's a bigger crowd, we can play games to break the ice. So, however much you hate it, you will be faced with situations where in you have to make small talk. So, next time don't judge a person when he/she tries to be polite. Just play dumb and answer the question. So, do you like my blog? he he.. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fall colors - inspirational

Good evening folks! I had a good day, considering I did not get a headache. Lately, I have been suffering from some slight headaches. Amrutanjan helps. I got busy with work and quickly forgot about the ache. Keeping one self occupied helps in more ways than one. Folks, I am excited to tell you that we have formed a social group of 3 (so far) at work. We take occasional coffee breaks in the kitchen. We discuss fun stuff. I look forward to these breaks. Waking and going to work has new meaning now.

I was on Facebook a little while ago and was wondering what to write as a status update tonight. As I was driving back from the gym, I noticed that the colors of the leaves have started changing already. To me the trees looked like they were draped in my favorite color combination of a saree. It dawned on me that God has given nature to the world so fashion designers could get inspired. And that was exactly what my status update was tonight.  Look at the pictures above. They can be used in a saree fit for a bride. The red, yellow, orange and brown. All earthy colors. The different combinations that is possible would just be any designer's dream. Incidentally, the fall colors happen to be my fav. colors. The colors inside my house, are primarily the fall colors. My eyes are always attracted to the reds, browns, oranges and yellows. So much so, that 90% of my wardrobe constitutes of these colors. I also think that these shades look good on the Indian skin tone. The lighter colors that are more popular in the western countries make me look pale and washed out! When I go shopping for clothes, I can easily point out the clothes made in the eastern countries just by looking at the colors. Colors play an important role in our day to day life. Colors make our lives bright and meaningful. Colors can sway thinking, change actions, and cause reactions.  It is believed that different colors reflect different personalities. I read somewhere that  Yellow, orange, red are considered to be hot colors and often are linked with hot temperament and anger. I can believe it as that summarizes my personality to some extent. For your information, I cool down very easily too.:-) So don't give up on me. he he.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

"Skypo" therapist?

Hi friends, we had 2 days of beautiful weather here is VA. No wonder they say Virginia is for lovers. This weekend was mostly about eating and exercising. Met with some friends for dinner on Sat. The restaurant we went to was jam packed. I started to wonder about how so many people (including us) are willing to spend that much money on a meal when there are so many cheaper options. It must be about just getting a break  from the routine and enjoying some good food with great company. At least that's how I see it. Somehow this combination makes the food more tastier. I have developed some itchy boils on my right elbow since I have started using the lotion from body works. I must be allergic to it. Loved the smell on me tough. It lasted the whole 8 hrs. that I was at work.
A psychiatrist asks a lot of expensive questions your wife asks for nothing.  ~Joey Adams
I knew of websites for finding a recipe, finding clothes, even finding partners. But finding a psychotherapist? Unbelievable how technology has made people drift further away from people. I read an article today regarding people in urban areas in India using video and Internet to chat with their psychotherapists. I was so intrigued by this, as I realised that people have become so busy these days to even have to go physically to an important appointment. Can the psychotherapist actually read the mind of the person on the other side of the camera on the Skype video chat? How is he going to prescribe medicines based simply on the conversation he had on the net? How safe is such a conversation? Is it really private now? I can see the convenience of this type of arrangement. The patient can sit comfortably in his room and discuss the problems with the therapist without having to waste time and money to get to the therapist's location. Especially for handicapped people, this is a boon. In the example that the article provided, the particular patient was dealing with an ex - relationship issue and found this on line service to be very useful to get over the situation. However, I have my reservations. How do you know that the therapist is not a fraud? It is a risk that if one is willing to take, might be fruitful. The article went on to say that therapy is becoming very popular these days with lot of urban Indians and also has international clients. Wow!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Perfect Romantic Location

Good evening doston! What an eventful day it was. Something nice happened at work today. Unfortunately, I am not ready to share it with the world yet. Anyway, I was talking to a friend after a long time. I asked him "So, what's new?". I liked his answer. He said "it's a new day to get screwed, betrayed etc.". Although, this sounds pessimistic, it is reality on most of the days. He was speaking out of experience. Started watching the movie Delly Belly for the second time. I got distracted with so many things, that it was not enjoyable. I had to stop. No fun.

What is so attractive about a cold day in a hill station? Most Bollywood movies show hill stations to be a perfect honeymoon spot. As a teen, I used to dream of a married life in such a location. In retrospect, it was so silly. Nevertheless, the idea is still so tempting. The thought of waking up on a chilly morning, and stepping out on the balcony of a cottage is so exciting. The breathtaking view of the mountains is a treat to the eyes. The fog covered area probably makes one want to run through the woods singing and dancing like bollywood actors. A hot cup of "Pahadi" tea would be perfect for a good start to the morning. The tea estates of Darjeeling comes to mind. Some of the sizzling hill stations in India are in places like Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand. I had visited J&K with my parents in the year 1987. It was the BEST vacation of my life till date. Kashmir is one of the most beautiful places in the world. It's nature at it's best. The other hill station that I have visited is close to Mumbai called "Mahabaleshwar". I have very fond memories associated with that trip. My dream of going on a honeymoon to one of these locations still remains a dream. It's on my agenda for a later date.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rapunzel, Rapunzel, Let down your hair to me

Hmm blogdosts, why do people talk so much? Lol! I met a person today, who beat me when it comes to talking. She did not give me an opportunity to talk about me at all in the half hour that we were together and I had just met her. Now I know, why she likes shopping, her fav. drink, how many kids and pets she has, their names, everything. Well, I actually had to make an excuse to say bye to her. On a better day, I would have loved her company. Yes, Jagit Singh! How many more talented people can this world afford to lose back to back? 

Folks, do you remember reading the story of the pretty Rapunzel? She had beautiful, long blond hair that won the heart of a young and handsome prince, who later on married her. Ask any man if he likes long hair on a woman and 99.9% of the time the answer is "yes". Men like running their fingers through the long hair and even smelling it. Men cannot resist ,when they see long hair that cascades down a female's back. (So, I heard). Long hair has been associated with sexiness and power since about the beginning of time for human. Long hair is more 'feminine' whereas short hair has become the domain of men. more or less. What constitutes as long hair? It changes from culture to culture. In India, hair is considered long when it runs below the buttocks. I have never been that lucky when it comes to thick and lustrous hair. My best friend from childhood was blessed with this feature. Yes, you are correct if you guessed that she was a Malayalee. Many people attribute it to the coconut oil they use to moisturize the hair. I think it is more to do with genetics. It is only a myth that oiling your hair regularly can keep hair healthy and shiny. In my opinion, you are born with great hair. How else would you explain most of the Sikhnis to have long, thick hair? I have heard comments like, looking at a person's hair, one can judge the overall health of that person. Hmm, not really, I have seen some of fittest people with scanty hair and even bald! So, men if you are reading, don't just go by the length of the hair to pick your girl friend. We are better from the inside. Side note: We women love a head full of bouncy hair on our men too! he he..

Sunday, October 09, 2011

The sensual woman

Happy Sunday evening folks! Nothing is happy about it. I know. Since I last visited this space, the world is missing the genius Steve Jobs. It was a sad day. Weekend had some fantastic weather here in VA. I spent the Friday evening visiting a couple of friends to receive the "Taambulam". These friends display dolls on seven steps called "Golu" during Navaratri times. I do not know the significance of that. But it is definitely enjoyable to watch the whole celebration. We chanted the "Vishnu Sahasranma" and sang a few bhajans. I spent most of Sat. in the mall. Got lost in the Bath and Body Works store. Don't you love it? The fragnances are flirty, I had to indulge!

So, sensuality can be triggered in so many different ways. Fragrances act as a perfect stimulant. Whether it’s flirty & sexy, romantic & girly, desirable & sophisticated, devilish & sinful, glamorous & superstar or simply a party girl exciting there is a fragrance suitable for everyone. Each fragrance has its own distinct character and the uniqueness that can make a woman sensual. In olden days in India, the female used to cover herself from top to bottom with the smoke from the burning of a powder called "Sambrani".  It is always sprinkled on glowing red charcoal. The fumes which come out exude the aroma and it slowly spreads all across the room. The woman used to present herself to her man bathed in the aroma of  "Sambrani". It was a turn on for the man. I have heard men comment on ladies perfumes. They say that the smell lingering behind when a women walks away is something they take home with them to fantasize. Now a days there are a dime a dozen scented candles that can be used in different rooms to create the sensuous ambiance. So, I think, it is important to smell good. If you are a woman, you must use perfumes in your favor. The hard part is finding that scent that works well with the chemistry of your body. Just because it smelt good on your friend, does not mean it can smell good on you. It's to be found our by trial and error and after spending quiet a bit of time and money. I did just that on Sat. I can't wait to try the lotion and spray tomorrow. I will keep you all posted.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Adrenaline Rush

Happy dussehra doston! I had a fantabulous day. Went out to lunch with colleagues to an Indian buffet, yet again! This time we were 10 of us. Loved the comments that were passed on the food. The Americans associated gulab jamun with doughnuts and when I told them that the dosa and idli batter was fermented overnight, the expression on their face was worth watching. I wish I had a camera with me. Highlight of the day tough was when a good friend called me. She was using her cell phone which was registered in a different state. She caught me by surprise alright. I love pleasant surprises like that. I hope all of you reading this are taking notes.:)

Think of the word adrenaline and it conjures up an image of a bunch of testosterone-driven individuals racing, bungie jumping, flying off a cliff, diving into the open skies. Recently, the movie Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara showed the thrill of some adventures like this and how the individuals experienced a sense of satisfaction after they had the adrenaline rush. An adrenaline rush is the feeling and reaction you get from the release of epinephrine, which is aka adrenaline. Adrenaline rushes can cause you're body to do things that it normally wouldn't be able to do if it weren't for the adrenaline such as running faster than normal. Nothing can beat the thrill and excitement experienced when faced with highly stressful and dangerous situations and adrenaline is what causes the excitement. Roller coaster rides are one such example. Although, for the life of me, I cannot sit on one of those. Not even the baby rides. I remember reading what Mithun Chakraborty had to say about roller coasters. He said, he initially thought that people on the roller coaster screamed because they were happy, but when he sat on one of them he realised that they screamed out of fear. They were clearly having an adrenalin moment. They were high from it. Speed, video games, music, even sex are some examples where I think one can experience this type of high. Conquering your fear, whether it is fear of public speaking, fear of heights, etc. gives you that rush too. It's good when it has positive effects on you. Negative effects - Let's not talk about that.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Spiritualism - is it for you?

Hi friends. Attended an Odyssey of the Mind information session yesterday at my son's school. Interesting way of engaging kids in creative thinking. The OM philosophy is that there is no right or wrong answer, there is only a different answer. It motivates a child to speak up. I like that. It was a beautiful day today here in VA. In between rains the sun came out for a few hours as a teaser.

Spiritualism- Belief in some religion. I was born a Hindu. Does it mean that I should follow Hinduism? I don't think so. Most of our parents, inculcate into us, a religion that we are born into. Nothing wrong with that. It is their duty to teach us what is right and wrong according to what they have learnt and understood. I pass my knowledge on to my kids too. But forcing an individual is not good. Ultimately, the goal is to have good citizens who respect others.  Every religion has good and bad and is debatable. As a kid, I observed most of the rituals that my parents followed. At that time, it did not mean much to me. It was a family event filled with joy - chanting mantras, eating good food, wearing good clothes and getting together with a lot of family members. But today, as a grown up, I understand why my parents observed such events. It was to thank the almighty for what we had and to protect us from all the evil things that surround us. Today, I feel the need to follow exactly what my parents did. I want to thank god for what I have, keep my children healthy and protect them. I also think spirituality is not something you are born with. It has to come from within you. It is a developed sense. For the longest time, I did not understand it. I used to go to the temples as an outing, I used to sing bhajans for pleasure ( I still do), but I am experiencing  a sense of calmness in the singing. Whenever I feel low, I sing a bhajan and it rejuvenates me. I know I have a long way to go to understand in depth, what spiritualism means. All I know and care at this point is - Yes, I am God's child and I am beginning to understand HIM and connect with HIM. Yes, I am spiritual! Are you?

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Confused Women Club

Good evening friends! I think we should make Saturday the new Sunday and skip Sunday altogether from the week. I might be able to get over Monday blues this way. Something HAS to change. It has been 19 years. Every Sunday, the same sinking feeling, like it's all over. Please let me know if you have any ideas to solve this problem of mine. Finally watched the movie "When Harry met Sally" on Friday. Talked to a couple of friends in India. It was a quiet weekend otherwise. Mostly getting organised around the house.

While talking to my friend in India, we realised that there are many women who think exactly like us. We joked about starting a "confused women club". I think I can unanimously be elected as the president of that club. The member of this club is a confused soul. Confused, because she is not sure about what she wants in life. Does she want to live in the US or in India? Since she is in her middle age, she feels the need to enjoy all the parts of life that she missed during her teens and in her child bearing and rearing age. Now, that her children are grown up, she feels her life has started now. But is it too late to do some of the things she really wants to do like follow the current fashion trend, go to discotheques, hang out with friends and giggle like silly school girls. She wants to live in the current times. Social fear, or fear of family, or fear of being the odd person out is stopping her from enjoying the things she wants to do. Some women are still single. They would like to meet the man of their dreams. It is getting tougher as the clock ticks. Some women might want to lose or gain weight, some others might have family problems. Only women can understand women completely and it is nice to share the experiences with one another. I think this type of  a club will be successful. I know of many of my friends who would love to be a part of such a group. A group that can do things together. The company that they long for. It's a great idea! Solution to loneliness.