Celebrating #PulaoBiryaniDay with Family - “So who decides that today is Biryani Day?” asked my family. I had cooked two pots of Biryanis (one veg and other non-veg) as a special treat. The morning...
Sunday, 26 July 2009
This week-end I went for script writing workshop and learnt the format for writing a film script. We were made to watch the film Philadelphia. Rajeshree, who was conducting the workshop, would read the script for about ten minutes and then show us the film for two minutes, pointing out as to us how the script is translated into a film, it was quite interesting…the problem with me is that I hardly ever watch TV serials, I get bored easily, but she has told me to watch as much TV as I can, to understand how the script is written .and to be able to write…(there are so many TV channels in India, if I can write for some serials, it would be nice but for that I have to understand what works and what are the trends.) .I am thinking of installing TV in my bedroom next to my computer…but, this is extra work for me….sigh! To install TV, I have to change the positions of my furniture, make new lower cabinets, shift wardrobes and give away the extra furniture to anyone who will use it… there is sewing machine that I am not using, have to get rid of it soon…the carpenter will begin work from next week….. Imagine, during my growing up years I have never read PG Wodehouse book! They are so very interesting. I am starting one now (never too late) I bought ‘Aunts aren’t gentlemen’ Gosh! I am loving it. I read in the bus (whenever I m travelling, I normally read or listen to FM) on my way to school. Truthfully, I don’t get enough time at home…. I have also started needlework. Made a small drawing of a cottage and will fill that with embroidery. One of my friends visited me recently and she liked the needlework-frames in my living room and she asked me to make it for her. I told her to take what was hanging on my walls but she insisted that I make new one, specially for her. So, here I am, doing needlework while watching news on TV.
Thursday, 23 July 2009
Okay, it is about time I did some work on the net and squeezed out the cash from it. Everybody is eating honey on net except me. So, I looked around, thinking of marketing some products where I can make some money and hear it go 'jingle-jingle' in my pockets, because that is where (I am told) people can find some gold-coated dough. Writing is my passion but I cannot make money on from it (right??) since I write only when I feel like and what I feel like, I can never write what others tell me to (and also, market is flooded with writers who blog for free and Ad Sense makes money from stupid bloggers like me and also there are too many writers around and I have managed to squeeze just one toe in, many people like to read what I write but none will pay me, how sad, na?) But wait a minute, yeah, I have found something that I would use it regularly. Because I care for my health and I hate taking pills, they normally get stuck into my throat and I have to drink gallon of water to flush it down my throat. Now, I can keep healthy by just pressing few points on my hand. There have been various things available in the market like pointed pencil-shaped sticks, colored pokey balls, iron spring rings, etc, and I have used most of these products but the most interesting thing that I found useful is this ‘Accu-Heal’. ‘Accu Heal’ is a mushroom-shaped thingie that has spring inside it; it is made of plastic and it is of very good quality. (not the China kind of plastic) The broad end is used to press with your palm (so that it dos hurt you)and the blunt narrow end is pressed on the points to stimulate the nerves that are leading towards that organ. It has spring inside it that makes it possible to press and release. I am using this and it is showing great results. When do I use it?? Well, every time I get minute or two for me, for example- While sitting in the bus, while waiting in a queue, while watching TV and also while waiting for the web page to open, (sometiimes it takes forever to open a page) These are the moments when I take care of my health. It is always here, next to my keyboard and also in my purse.(Yes, I have two, its not expensive, na..) Now I am going to sell these because if it is useful to me then it should be useful to others too. I have taken the agency of marketing this product. Yey! I am doing business!! Okay, the packing comes like this It has a graphic manual that shows the points and its corresponding link to the organs. For example, if you have a headache then you may press the narrow end of the mushroom on the upper tip of the thumb. Got it?? You see the points and corresponding area to the organs in the body in the manual. It is very clearly shown and very easy to follow. Just buy this product and be your own doctor. PS: Good news is that I have received one order from a company who plans to use it as a souvenir and distribute it as a gift to all its’ employees. Now isn’t that a cool idea??? I told you it is a great idea. Why don't you try it? huh? For trade enquiries, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, 22 July 2009
If you want to truly make money in Mumbai, there are hundreds of ways to make it, all you need to do is the hard work and sincerity, Me thinks that Bihari are very enterprising and you see them doing all kinds of odd jobs making our life easier. Auto rickshaw drivers, taxi drivers, street hawkers, carpenters, painters, etc, etc, most of them are Biharis. Had they stayed back in Bihar and worked so hard in their own city, how rich and successful city would Bihar be? But Mumbaite are lucky that we get opportunity to avail of their service. Take for example like these group of Biharis stationed outside post office. The other day, I shopped for my niece some t-shirts, skirts, earrings and some accessories and headed towards the post office. It was drizzling and as soon as I stepped out of the auto, this Bihari smile at me and asked me if he could assist me. He took the packet from my hand and examined the contents and then led me inside the post office to show the contents to the post master. We were then back on the footpath, outside the post office, he dusted a small wooden stool and asked me to remain seated while he would pack it for me. Thus I sat, on a low stool, watching the traffic and the people on the streets and then watching him pack my parcel. Cramped up on his lower seat, with a small bag on his lap, and the broken plastic sheet over his head, up against the wall, barely protecting him from rain, he removed beige colored cloth, measured it around the packet and cut the cloth with razor blade (he didn’t even invest in scissors) and stitched the cloth around the packet. He gave me two forms to fill and guiding me the right way to write the address, stressing the point that both, ‘To’ and ‘From’ addresses should be written on one side of the packet and he stuck the form on the other side. He accompanied me back into the post office, bought stamps and helped me post it…. Quite easily done for a small fee of Rs50 only….
Monday, 13 July 2009
When I read my humor piece on Caferati read-meet on Saturday, I didn’t think much about it, but the next day, when I attended workshop on film-making and photography, that’s when my humor script found a channel... I went alone on Sunday morning (normally Sunday are reserved for family activities and I don’t usually go anywhere else, my family disapproves of it), I was hoping that I would have a friendly chat with at least one member at the work-shop, because I am normally quite shy to talk to strangers, especially when I am alone. The venue at Varsova (about one hour away from my house) was easy to find and I reached half an hour earlier than the actual time. To my surprise, I met the hostess of Caferati, Pinky, whom I had met a day earlier for the first time. We exchanged short greetings and then I waited for the hour to arrive, passing my time, flipping through magazines, avoiding the eyes of more strange people around me. The workshop started at 1030 hours and there were too many people, more people than what a room could accommodate. The session began with the instructor showing us a film he called pixilation ( a method of clicking still pictures and making a film on a computer using the application of 'adobe-after-effects') he showed us some great shots. I especially liked the one in which a story was made on a bed with graphic that showed the activities of a woman during the day (it was a great idea, must try that some time.) We were then asked to form our own groups to make one film per group. We had to spend the first hour making a story-board and then the rest of the day was to click shots, and then make a movie. Everybody started making groups. People who knew each other were first to form their groups. I waited for somebody to invite me, looking in all directions. Ann Huang,(casting director and short film maker) who was sitting opposite me, asked me if she could team up with me, she also asked Pradeep (lawyer) and Sidharth (Lawyer), who were sitting next to her, and we all agreed. Then Pinky,(Architect) who was sitting behind, approached to ask me if I could team up with her and her friend (graphic designer). I told her that I have already committed to one group, but Ann asked her if she would like to join us and thus team of six members were formed. We rushed out and occupied a private corner and thus our session began. Pinky suggested that I read my humor piece to the group and everybody loved it and so it was decided that we would make a film on my script. The story was about a foreigner in a coffee shop which I have blogged HERE It was decided that Ann was to play the role of 'foreigner', Pradeep the 'Bank director', Sidharth, the 'cousin' and yours truly was relaxing on a easy chair(as a back drop) and executing the story. Photography and graphics were done by Pinky and her friend. And thus the fun began. We clicked and clicked, more than 200 shots, checking it each time. Ann, Sidhharth and Pradeep put on their best acting performance and proved that they were gifted with acting talent, their expressions were captured in shots and we laughed through out the day. It was the best workshop that I had attended to this day. After lunch we downloaded the shots, edited them, added music and made a film, thus bringing my story alive.. The last session of the workshop (at 1800 hours) was to see all the film made by different groups and there were fifteen such groups. All the films were made with great interest, but of course, we felt, ours was ‘the best’. And why would that not be? My story was good, we had film maker in our group with graphic designer and architect and if anybody protests or disagrees, then we had lawyers to fight our case and prove our point. *grin*
Thursday, 9 July 2009
I am not sure if it is wise to blog about a crow, It is a known fact that not many people in India would be interested in talking about it, though it is a daily visitor at our home, perching on our window sill, hopping from one window to another, getting restless when ever it sees us munching something.. a most greedy and irritating bird, who wants his share in everything that we eat. Wants to grab everything that it sees lying around, whether it needs it or not. (Some ancestor that it is believed to be, whenever it visit me, I try to guess its relation to me) Well, it has got my attention since last two months and has held me prisoner in my own house. The story goes like this… I was out of my Mumbai for two months and the crows believed it was a haunted house. It gathered twigs from different branches and built a nest, a nice round nest, tucking it neatly on my balcony grill, very artistically made and was tied with a blue cord to make it secure. Some workmanship there…. When I came back home after two months, there were five pretty eggs, bluish in color with brown and black spots. I had no heart to destroy the nest and throw away the eggs, plus the gang of crows would not allow it. Each time I went into my balcony there would be more than twenty crows hovering near my balcony. I would show my fist to them and come back into my room. For next two months, I watched them grow and even managed to click pictures out-smarting that gang. It was a great sight watching them grow from tiny helpless mass of flesh to a full size crows. I was amazed by the care that the other crows took to see to the safety of their young ones, (humans are careless some times, but not those crows) although there were five eggs, there were only two crows hatched, I wonder what happened to other three eggs, cause there were no sign of broken, un-hatched shells…..also, my balcony was quite clean during those two months, no litter, no mess, nothing. The only thing that irritated me the most was that they were so damn rebellious when ever I wished to sit in my balcony. They would threaten me, cawing loudly and entering through my grill and flying around me. Even the bribe of bread or morsel of food would not help. They were so very protective of their young ones and were not ready to risk my presence. (“Hello, this is my house” I would protest) I normally have an evening cup of tea in my balcony, but since last two months I have been deprived of it. I have watched them grow. I saw the little ones try to spread their wings, saw them looking up into the sky with their open, pinkish beak, and trying to produce sounds that sounded like squeaks. When they were able to walk, they walked around the grill, flapping their wing, slowly practicing flying a short distance and then snuggling back into their nest for some rest. And finally, they gathered enough courage to fly into the sky. I was relieved of course. I quickly asked my helper to destroy the nest. But the crows were still rebellious and furiously cawing but she had to defy them and remove the nest. It was so strong that she had to use her strength to lift it out from the grill. Late that evening, the baby crows came back (I recognised them from their slightly pinkish beak) and they were surprised that there is no comfortable nest. But they are still there, jay walking in my balcony, not yet courageous to leave my home. And I am still a prisoner in my home
Wednesday, 8 July 2009
Yesterday was Guru Purnima and it was a great day to celebrate and remember the greatness of their Guru. In India, everybody has a Guru and first thing people will ask you is, ‘Who is your Guru?’. When I say ‘nobody as yet' then they are surprised and shake their head in regret telling me that there is no hope for me. I belong to a family of one Spiritual Guru, and I secretly believe and have faith in Him. He takes very good care of me. Why must I propagate my Spiritual Guru’s name in public?? Isn’t the relationship between Guru and disciple a personal matter, not to be gloated or advertised?? I respect everybody’s Gurus too. If people believe in any Guru and want to talk about his greatness, I have no problem at all but I wish they would not ask me about my beliefs. Anyways, my sister celebrated Guru Purinima in her house. Her sister-in-law is quite religious and she knows to perform many religious rites. Yours truly went to help with the decoration prior to puja Later, that evening, all the family and friends gathered in her house to sing and chant hymns while they washed the idol of their guru with oil, milk and water and then they prayed to the picture of their Guru, offering fruits and money, flowers and light from the incense coil. I was thinking of all the teachers during my school days and could not recollect any warm memories of the days with my teachers. None of the teachers ever loved me. I do remember the names of only those meanest teachers who hated me the most and they would compare me to the brightest student and point out my stupidity. Some of my teachers had promised me that I had no future at all and that I would be an idiot all my life. I have very unhappy memories of my school days cause I would be punished almost everyday and spanking was the order of the day. Some days I came home with cracked knuckles and some days with injured ear. My cheeks would always have the imprint of marks left by angry teachers. I learnt to hate them all and wanted so badly to teach them a lesson on tolerance and patience. Well, some people are lucky that they have found a good guide in their teacher and are happy to remember them on this day. It was a good feeling to see the devotion of people around me. All the people chanted happily about the greatness of their Guru and later enjoyed the feast of snacks and drink. I went away mid way, to a book store, to pay my patronage to the books at the store. Most of my life, I have done self study. Knowledge to me has come from that printed matter and it has given me all the joy. My spiritual Guru is in my heart and the printed words balms my mind. I am also grateful to my family and my close friends who have stood by me, have guided me, encouraged me and had faith in me. I am proud to be a person that I am, hopefully not as stupid as my teachers imagined me to be…...
Monday, 6 July 2009
I have just one plant at home that was gifted to me by my sister, a bamboo plant. My sister promised me that it would bring me luck, I am not sure whether its’ magic is working on me., but yes, it is out there, near my main door, growing healthily. But I cannot take credit of this healthy plant because I am so damn lazy that I cannot take care of plants. I am too lazy to even go to fetch water for myself, so how do I find strength to go and water the plants? The task of watering the plant is handed over to my maid, who dutifully waters and tends to the plant whenever she thinks it is time to do so. But that does not mean that I do not like plants, actually, I love plants, especially those flowering trees that line up the road in my lane. I love the fragrance and the colors that brighten up my days, its' freshness and the greenery and I sometimes wish I were not so lazy, then, may be I would probably tend a garden too. Now-a-days, all I like is sitting in front of this computer and reading and writing. I enjoy meeting my friends on face book, reading their status and playing scrabble with them, there are links that my friends direct me to visit and I go to those links to read what they find it interesting, and now, my friend sents me a potted plant on face book. Wow! thats kewl! isn't it? It’s true that I cannot do the break breaking job of tending a garden, but this virtual farm town on the face book is something different, and quite a blessing indeed. Now I have become a farmer, I buy land, plough fields, plant seed, and harvest the ripe fruits and crops and sell the produce. sometimes I store them because I am too lazy to go to market and sometimes I hire help during harvesting. Its loads of fun and I am quite enjoying it. I even visit my friend’s farm and look after their farm when they are busy and I am not feeling too weak. hahaaha! In two days I have learnt to grow grapes, potatoes, I have some animals in my farms too and now is in process of putting fence around animals because otherwise they keep escaping and walking all over the fields. I will even buy a farm house. When I am rich with lots of trees and enough stock of fruits and vegetables, I will be able to invite some friends to come and spend few days on my farm. No need to rent a car, or buy fuel to reach my farm, it is just a click away, now that is what I would call a ‘Mouse Potato’ huh??
Thursday, 2 July 2009
Till the age of twelve, I did not know the date of my birth….every day was the same and nobody cared. Being the fifth girl in the family, I was most unwelcomed arrival into this world. So the celebration was naturally out of question.
At school, I would receive sweets and chocolates from my friends and sometimes was even invited for birthday parties but mine was never ever celebrated. I envied all the rich girls and hoped to be born in a better home in my next birth. I always wished that some one would celebrate my birthday, make me feel important, shower me with gifts and get me those frilly new dresses. But being fatherless, things were different.
Luckily for me, I was blessed with most beautiful and caring mother but she also had her own problems and was under too much stress. Living in a joint family without a spouse is difficult, life is hard. Therefore I never dared ask her for a celebration of my birthday nor did I ever ask her the date of my birth.
It was at the age of thirteen that I finally learnt the date. That was when I had changed school and I was able to peep into my school leaving certificate. It said 27th June and I waited, glancing at the calendar everyday, waiting for the day to arrive. And at the age of fourteen, I finally celebrated my birthday for the first time in my life.
Being inexperienced, I took all my friends for a movie and then treated them with Samosas and drink and the culture of celebrating birthdays began.
But, this kind of celebration always embarrasses me, I no more enjoy the attention and the fuss associated wih it and normally like to spend it quietly. But, friends who care, drop in uninvited to wish me and I treat my friends for a lunch or an outing and have a good time.
But this year, things were different. It coincided with a marriage celebrations of my cousin’s son in Jaipur. Now, Jaipur is the place I was born in but I have never ever celebrated my birthday there. It sounds good! My sister decided to gift me a return air ticket, and that was a perfect. So, this year, the birthday celebration was different.
I wore a new dress, travelled to Jaipur, took a tourist bus from airport to ‘Le Meridian Hotel’ a fifty minutes drive (during which I was able to get some great shots of the city), was received with traditional music, a flower garland and a warm welcome, and I was given a suite, the biggest room in the hotel that I shared with her mom (she always says that I am her favorite cousin whenever she introduces me to her friends, so naturally, I deserve the best..), attended the Hi-Tea event, where we were introduced to other guests, and then late evening, there was a welcome party in the hotel with delicious cuisine and entertainment.
There were many dances organised, including belly dancers who put in their best performance…. Although all the guests were attending this wedding celebration, I pretended that it was my party…..
hahahaha!! What more can one ask???
I have poor memory therefore I tend to forget the good and the bad times easily. What is past is forgotten, each day I try my best that my ...