Then and Now !

What is this – Then and Now ? Here I want to write about my childhood days in Then and my daughters related childhood happenings in Now. I always keep talking to my girls about this – when I was young, I used to do things like this and that. And so many talks have happened between us, that its time to blog them all.

Then – I had the freedom to play without being dampened by my school routines. Since we lived in houses (apartments were not there), the play area is the street in which we lived. And all the kids in the street joined together in evening, to play the same game everyday. I can even remember, that we’ve played the same run and catch for so many days. Then it was the seven pillars – that craze went on for so many days. Then it was the turn of Hopscotch, Kho Kho, Hide and Seek. What I want to tell is that we were not BORED of playing, as long as we played everyday.

Now – My girls are growing up in the apartment culture, where people from different parts of India live together. Its such a great thing as we get to know about various cultures. Even though there are enough children here to have 10 cricket teams, the surprising part is that these kids have formed groups among themselves – based upon whether their frequencies matching up. Huh ! And, I am more shocked by this line, – Ma, its boring – almost everyday. These children can’t play the same game even for 2 times in a row. That’s considered boring. So, in a two-hour playtime, how many games can they play without getting bored ? Their interest span, for anything, is very low.

Then – During play time, its only play, play, play. Of course, we also did our chit chat sessions, during break times. But never did any one of us brought the tape recorder or a radio out to play. First, it was so expensive to possess one, in those days. Second, the parents banned the kid to take any of the stuff out to play. And we were all more interested in playing together that we didn’t even think about taking the gadgets to the road.

Now – Any kid that comes to play, is attached to an ipod, mp3 player or at least a mobile phone, through the earphone jack. How can these children run and play, with a music player singing with them ? What is the need for such display of gadgets, while playing ?

Then – I have learnt carnatic music – it is a must for all kids in the traditional South Indian families. Me and my sister used to go this class together. And, in my class, we were taught the basic lessons through hearsay. No notes, to begin with. So, whatever the teacher teaches us today, we’ve to recite it by-heart in the next class. We learnt every lesson with such focus and concentration, that after 30 years, I am still able to recite them from memory.

Now – I also sent my girls to the music class – as is the tradition. Unfortunately for me, my eldest daughter decided that singing is not for her, at a very early age. And nothing I did, could make her go to the music class. The younger one has a good voice and started singing very well. When we shifted to our new home, the classes stopped just like that. Now, she just can’t remember the basic music lessons which she learned just 4 years back. Where is the focus of these children gone ? The filmi songs stay in mind, as the girls listens to it everyday – thanks to MTV, V or the various music players.

Then – There was no concept of maids in my home. So, me and my sister were allotted house hold chores from the beginning and it became an inherent part of my life. Before leaving home for school, I’ll have to sweep or mop the house and my sister will do other one. And we’ve to wash our clothes by ourselves, dry them in the terrace, before leaving to school. My mother will help us only in washing our uniforms. Sorry, no electronic help too in our house, then.

Now – I have a maid to clean the house and a washing machine to wash clothes. But, simple tasks like drying the clothes, putting the clothes in the laundry basket, setting the table for lunch / dinner and then cleaning the table, have to be given as instructions everyday. Today’s children are lost in their own world, that all these things are taken for granted – ma will do it attitude.

Then – The world was a better place, then, for my parents to leave me unattended while playing on the streets. Me and my sister used to walk to school, everyday and later on took up the responsibilities of taking my brother and cousins. Even though we stayed quite near to the Marina beach, it’ll take us about 30 mins to reach the beach. And we used to enjoy the walk so much that those were the quality family times, I remember very well. I started travelling by the bus, at an age of 15. Going to places on my own, was very exciting for me and it was easy for my parents to take that decision – as the world was much better to live in.

Now – My children are so used to travelling in the bike / car / auto, that the thought of a short distance of walk would wear them down. And the idea of allowing my girls to go on their own is scary to me, first. The world is in such a state now, that the girls better be escorted.

Now, I feel, that I’ve complained quite a lot about the NOW kids. But, that’s not the intention and should not be taken like that. Its just facts told in the times of my childhood and that of my girls. Actually, today’s kids are more smarter, have more exposure to various things (both good and bad – which makes our job more difficult) and can decide better for themselves.

So, just like our children, we parents are in the process of learning as everyday goes by. I just remember this at the junction to end my blog – By the time a man understands that his father had been RIGHT all the time (that happens when he becomes a father), there is his son who thinks that his father knows NOTHING. I think this is the life cycle.

Edited to add :

The way my thoughts are spinning in my head after I published the post, I think there’ll be a Then and Now – Part II, very soon.


Are you happy in your Marriage ?

Of late, my ears are buzzing with the news that couples (I personally know some of them) are not happy in their marriages. My heart goes out to those people who are unable to find happiness in their wedded life. It is not because that they are not in love, but they have not built their love on strong family grounds.

I’ve seen a few couples, wherein the wife thinks her husband is only for her and their children. It has always been – Me, My husband and My children. I am asking those ladies – “Did your man jump from the sky above onto your lap ?” That man of yours is a son first before he became your husband. Please give respect to your mother-in-law, for the one great fact that she has made a wonderful man and given him to you. Just think of this possibility too – What if your son leaves you for the new wife he has got ? (Futuristic thinking)

It is not always the two of you, in the relationship called marriage. The circle of relatives, who surround your husband and your rapport with them is crucially important. Whenever your husband’s brother /sister appreciates you or the work you’ve done, have you noticed your husband’s face glow with pride ? Now, this man of yours will do anything for you. Wonderful, isn’t it ?

The women of this world have a wonderful nature – to break or make a home. How true ! Till you understand the person with whom you’re going to live with, till you understand the family that surrounds your man, please learn to LET GO. By LET GO, I don’t mean that you should be silently taking the abuses (if any). My point is that do not be under emotional stress to misunderstand the relations. Once you get to know the people around your husband, the relationship is on more stronger grounds to be shaken by silly incidents and outbursts. On familiar grounds now, your family members will LET GO for your sake. Isn’t that what you want ?

From my point of view, women sponge themselves into any situation and are great at adapting themselves to new environments. Otherwise, why would a woman leave her parents home and start living in a new home after marriage ? We, women, are better in this self-adaptation process. We can change from home to working environments and back home in a jiffy. We hold top posts in companies as efficient managers. Why not be the best loved manager in our own homes ?

Marriages are great institutions of life. Let us build a wonderful home surrounded by our love for our family. The secret ingredient for a loving life is – always add a pinch of your priceless love every time you cook a meal at home. That way, your loved ones always come home for the loving meal. And needless to say, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.

You have a WIN-WIN situation, dear women. Make use of it to the maximum and my warm wishes for a blissful married life.

A Hundred Questions about me !

I am at this junction in my life where I don’t even think about my daughter’s question paper. And here comes 100 questions charging at me for self – analysis.
Was tagged by Nancy into doing this appraisal of my soul.

1. What’s your name? Uma
2. Nicknames? Umiya (by my best friend in school), Ums, Upma (particularly used to irritate me, but still used a lot.)
4. Zodiac sign ? Virgo
5. Male or female or transgendered ? Female
6. Elementary? Children’s Garden School, Chennai
7. Schools ? M E I Children’s School, Chennai (Nursery)
8. Colleges ? Govt Polytechnic for Women, Chennai (if polytechnics can be catalogued under colleges)
9. Height ? 5’4”
10. Hair color ? Used to be black, now has acquired a shade of brown, due to henna.
11. Long or short ? Keeping it short – easy to maintain
12. Do you have a crush on someone? ? Right now, nobody (weep, weep)
13: Ever been in love? Very much, with my husband and so much with my daughters.
14. Piercings ? Ears, yes. Nose – had it for 10 years and one fine day said goodbye to nose ring.
15. Tattoos ? Hate them on me and on others too.
16. Righty or lefty ? Generally right handed. Due to tennis elbow in my right hand, I am training myself to be a lefty, at least for doing strenuous jobs.

17. First piercing ? My ears were pierced when I was 1 year old, without my permission.
18. First best friends ? Sharada, Hamsini, Raji, Sharad – when I was 7 or 8 years old.
19. First sport you joined? Running race – I used to win all the races in school till I reached my puberty.
20. First pet ? Last year, had a pup, Brownie for only 3 months and then gave it away.
21. First vacation ? New Delhi – Its all hearsay, my parents took me there at an age, of which I cant recall anything. First vacation, which I can remember is to Ahmedabad, my mama used to stay there.
22. First concert ? Been a part, in the school team.
23. First crush ? Ravi Shastri, when I was in college. That was the time he won an Audi and all the girls in my class were droooooling on him.
24. Eating ? Anything, except sweets / ice creams / chocolates. Love to eat chips – anytime.
25. Drinking ? Would love to drink these anytime – water, tea, fresh juice (lemonades are my favs).
26. I’m about to ? eat lunch with my girls.
27. Listening to ? Tumse hi din hota hai – from jab we met – that’s my fav for the current season.
28. Last beverage ? Tea
29. Last phone call ? 30 mins back
30. Last text message ? from my cousin, wishing my daughter on her bday.
31. Last song you listened to ? aaogi jab tum ho saajna – from jab we met again. i love this song.
32. Last time you cried ? I cry everytime I watch Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and it came day before yday (may be the 17th time).
33. Dated someone twice ? Dating — Totally banned in my house.
34. Been cheated on? ? I don’t think so – as I try to convince myself that it is all a misunderstanding.
35. Kissed someone & regretted it? ? Yeah, my hubby, Srini – kissed him just after he had a paan (its the strong one) and very much regretted it.
36. Lost someone special? ? My grandfather.
37. Been depressed?? Sometimes, but try hard to come out of it.
38. Been drunk and threw up? ? Threw up – No. Drunk – yes, on our honeymoon – became totally drunk for one small glass of wine. Srini got so worried since I was laughing silly.
39. Made new friends ? Yeah, very special ones too.
40. Fallen out of love ? Never fallen in – to fall out.
41. Laughed until you cried ? Every time I watch Vivek’s comedy (Vivek is a famous comedian in the Tamil movies)
42. Met someone who changed you ? My mother-in-law. Changed me for the better.
43. Found out who your true friends were ? Yeah, in the most hard way possible.
44. Found out someone was talking about you ? Of course, I can sense that immediately.
45. Kissed anyone on your friend’s list ? No, no, no.
46. Made the first Move ? Mmmmmm…… No.
47. Do you have any pets ? None
48. Do you want to change your name ? Of course, not.
49. What did you do for your last birthday ? Had an enjoyable family dinner in a great restaurant. Srini had arranged for cake, flowers. What else can a woman ask for ?
50. What time did you wake up today – 5.30am. Have to get the girls ready for school as their bus is at 6.45am.
51. What were you doing at midnight last night? Blissfully in sleep.
52. Name something you CANNOT wait for ? I cannot wait for a get-together with my school mates.
53. Last time you saw your father ? Feb 2009
54. What is the one thing you wish you could change about your life ? Wish that I had gone on to finish my graduation.
55. Most visited webpage ? My Yahoo Mail – I love to keep in touch.
56.Bribed someone? ? Personally, no.
57.Played with dolphins? ? Went for a dolphin show, but after we got seated, the show got cancelled.
58. Want kids? ? Not at this stage in my life. Now, even a small change in my menstrual cycle can create havoc in my life.
59. Want to get married ? ? Yeah, me and Srini relive our wedding ceremony on our anniversary every year.
60. Careers in mind? ? Making a career for my girls.
61. Settling in a Big Villa? ? Yeah and that day, we’ll have a dog too.
62. Day or night? ? Nighty night, sleepy head.
63. What day is tomorrow? ? Tuesday.
64. Challenges? ? Physical ones – no. Mental ones – yeah, I don’t mind trying.
65. Drive with windows up or down? ? Down, of course.
66. Scared of Death? ? Yes.
67. Cook or Clean? ? Cooking all the way, for me.
68. Lips or eyes ? ????????
69. Hugs or kisses ? Both are meant only for my family.
70. Shorter or taller ? Taller
71. Older or Younger ? A lot younger.
72. Romantic or spontaneous ? Spontaneously romantic.
73. Nice stomach or nice arms ? If u work towards a nice stomach, you’ll automatically have nice arms. Howzaat ?
74. Sensitive or loud ? Very sensitive.
75. Hook-up or relationship ? Hook ups are not in my book.
77. Trouble maker or hesitant ? Mmmmmm very hesitant.
78. Kissed a stranger ? Never even thought about it.
79. Lost glasses/contacts ? I don’t wear glasses / contacts.
80. Found money on the road ? Wish I had.
81. Sex on first date ? When there’s no date, where’s the sex ?
82. Broken someone’s heart ? Didn’t do it deliberately.
83. Had your own heart broken ? Was too strong to let it break.
84. Held a snake? ? Awwww Nooooo. Just cant stand reptiles.
85. Been arrested ? Me ??
86. Turned someone down ? Yes
87. Cried when someone died ? When my grandfather died, I cried a lot.
88. Liked a friend that is a girl/boy? ? Yes
89. Yourself ? I do.
90. Miracles ? Absolutely.
91. Love at first sight ? It didn’t happen for me. But I was loved at first sight by my sweet hubby.
92. Heaven ? I am on a good deed mission, to reach there finally.
93. Santa Clause ? A wonderful character for a make believe fantasy world.
94. Peace in this lifetime ? Am trying very hard for it.
95. Kissing on the first date? ? Sorry, very boring life, indeed.
96. Angels ? Are all around us, trying to help us when we are in trouble.
97. Is there one person you want to be with right now? ? My sister-in-law in US.
98. Had more than one boyfriend/girlfriend at one time in the past? ? Yeah – girl friends.
99. You will die Young ? Already old, where to die young ?
100. You will end with the one you love and learn to love the one you are with – Its always better to love the one you are with.

Atlast, they are over. And here, I tag

Waking up with Alarms !

Trrrnnnng ! Trrrnnngg ! Ahhh ! What is that noise ? Who is disturbing my sleep ?
I hate these alarms. This was me when I was studying for board exams and this is still me when I try to get up and send my daughters to school. I love to switch off the alarm and go back to sleep and continue with my dream. Ah ! Such wonderful dreams come only in the early morning hours, which I’ve to cut short to get up.

When I was in school, every night before going to bed, my standard dialogue to my mom will be “Ma, please wake me up early. I’ve got to read”. She’ll give me a dirty look and walk off. I know this look, as I get it everyday. Early morning, when my mom starts waking me up, I’ll just open my eyes a little and tell “5 mins, I’ll be up”. And then I’ll cuddle nicely with a pillow and close my eyes to continue my dream. My mom will come again after 5 mins and this time she’ll have a very stern voice. I’ll actually sit up and again fall back on the bed. My mom walking from the kitchen to the bedroom and me changing poses will continue for another half an hour. To put an end to this situation, my mom will just get a glass of water and pour it on my face. Alas, dreams shattered, sleep gone and I am totally awake. As this situation was a regular everyday, both my mom and me got used to it, kind of. Now, you understood why she gave me a dirty look.

Actually, the problem arised because of my sister. This sister of mine will get up on her own in the ungodly hour of 3am to study. While I can study late into the night, I can never do this morning studies. I try and study during regular days so that I dont need to keep awake just to study. Why miss out on the wonderful dream-full sleep ?

And now, when I dont have anything to study, I’ve to get up early to the ringtones of the mobile alarm, so that my daughters get ready for school in time.

What a wonderful invention is the SNOOZE option in the alarms of mobile phones. It’s just like what I did, when I was young. Those days, it was my mom who used to snooze and call me every 5 mins. Now it is the mobile, which has taken over from my mom. I set the time in my mobile 30 mins fast. When the alarm rings, it is actually 30 mins in advance to the actual time. It is a great delight now, to keep snoozing the mobile for the next 30 mins and enjoy some more sleep, the way I wanted.

The holidays are the time when the mobile alarm is totally off, but I’ve to live with the real life alarms – like my daughter, who gets up at 5.30am even during days when she has off.

Now a days, as political parties in India follow the footsteps of Obama, they are becoming more gadget oriented. I keep getting election messages in the middle of the night or in the early morning hours. I am totally against these smses in the night times.

Finally, as the exams are getting over, I am just about to get a break from the alarms and blissfully sleep till the sun rises. Here’s to beautiful dreams and great sleeping time to myself !

Weight loss is never a Cake Walk !

Weight loss !!! Its just two words but the meaning and the effort that goes in to achieve it, is humongous. And all the tricks of the trade that we practise won’t bring the needle down, in the weighing scale.
I cannot be rated as fat. But people, who have seen me during my early days into marital bliss, will find me a bit more round at the curves, now. Well, to be honest, I don’t mind the roundness in the curves at all. It’s the bloated tummy that’s bothering me and especially my jeans, a lot.
I can still remember when all this started – it was after my second c-section. Every minute of the day was spent on my 2 daughters who are only 1 year 5 months apart. Imagine my plight when the older one wants to run around and play and I have the younger one to feed and nurse. This babysitting situation helped me to totally forget about my body. And by the time, I looked up to see myself in the mirror (after I had put both the girls in school), it was a horrible sight to see. Oh God ! All the weight gain has happily happened while I was totally oblivious to it. I had gained nearly 10kg than my weight before pregnancies.
Now, I take a vow to myself, to really workout and make myself look trim and fit.
– I started walking instead of taking the bus or auto wherever I was going alone (of course, only to places that are walkable for me). I couldn’t have walked with one toddler holding my hand and other one in my hip. I don’t remember when this exercise stopped or why it stopped.
– Somebody told having honey and lemon in warm water will help in reducing the fat. I sincerely did this till one fine day when I ran out of lemons.
– I joined swimming classes at my hubby’s insistence. Basically, I was scared shit of water. So, all that did happen in that 15 days course was that the fear of water was reduced considerably. But swimming, that didn’t happen at all. Look at my fate – when I paid a whopping 1000/- for 15 days course, I had to miss classes for 4 days due to my periods. So, only 11 days remained in my course. All I learnt was only to float.
Srini used to take me to the paid pools during weekends, so that I can hone my swimming skills. That also stopped when we got a transfer.
– During the next 5 years, somehow this exercise fever evaded me. It was when we joined the club’s health membership, that I started hitting the gym with a vengeance. And I was improving my swimming skills with Srini’s help. Wow, the world looks great now.
– I had just started reducing a few kilos and then came the fast food giants to Hyderabad. Why should they open shop here and have all of us drooling over their menus ? KFC, Mac to name a few were the culprits behind my weight gain, AGAIN.
– Now, we had to shift to our own house, and going to the health club became a distant dream.
– As I meet more women in my apartment, who have undergone similiar experiences, regarding this monster Weight, I am happy to be having company. So, some of us started some workout routines, which ended in happy coffees, cakes, sandwiches and so on that the workout didn’t have any effect at all.
– Then we took to yoga, the in thing now. We were all doing great yoga and we felt the difference in our body, but it hardly lasted for 2 months.
– Now, it is the turn of dancexercise. Even though the workouts are killing us, the joints are hurting, we know we’re burning a lot of calories there. But, can we sustain this pain and gain from the calorie drain ? I really doubt it.

Now, what does all these trials tell me ? They are shouting at the top voice that I AM NOT COMMITTED. Because, if I’ve been committed to the weight loss program, I wouldn’t have had Potato chips (my biggest weakness) or the cheesy fast foods. Whenever I am failing, I would have thought about it and found the reasons for my failure of the program.
The weight loss is never a cake walk, women. Think and choose the right weight loss program that suits your body and mind. You should be totally committed to the program. Ahhh! Talking about it is so easy. The difficulty is when you’ve to drag yourself through it.
So, help me God, to be more committed to the weight loss program, to stick to it (even during days of menstruation – these are my days when my program tends to fail) and to eat healthy.
Is weight loss a distant dream or a reality ?

I am Tagged.

Tagged me ! Oh my God ! I really don’t know how long this is going to take. And by the way, I also don’t know anybody whom I can tag. May be in future.

1. I think I am the insect hunter for my family. From the time I got married, its been like – Uma, chase this cockroach away, by my husband – Mama, there’s a lizard near the bathroom window.
How can I go in for a bath ?, by my daughter. So, its always me who has to hunt for the insect which is bothering my family members. I can hit them with a newspaper / broom / sandals anything that I can put my hand on.
2. The first one has lead to this. I am the brave hunter only till the insect has not tried jumping on me. When I was in my teens, we used to stay in the housing quarters provided to my father by the Telephones Department. Since there were lots of trees around, insects visiting us were also in plenty. Once, when I was least expecting, a tiny baby lizard just slipped from the roof and fell on my shoulder. I jumped, screamed, ran about the house – but nobody knew for what. All the others were laughing at me and trying to stop me. But, the thought of a lizard on me made my skin crawl with terror. Actually, the lizard had fallen off me when I had jumped first, which I came to know much later.
3. I am the official Electrician / Plumber / Wiring specialist after my marriage. I can do wiring for telephones, TV, Computers. Thank God, I did my Engineering.
4. In my parents family, I am the eldest daughter and I have a younger sister and a brother. Being the eldest has its own disadvantages and I really used to long for an elder brother. When I got married, it was a dream come true. I am the youngest daughter-in-law, with 2 elder brothers-in-law and an elder sister-in-law.
5. I am a very reserved person to begin with and it takes time for me to know people well. Once, the frequency matches, I go out of my way to make the relationship much better. But there is a negative side to me too – if I don’t get along with a person I just start ignoring them. I can even look through them, sometimes.
6. I had a friend Susy, when I was doing a computer course with Aptech. And Susy had invited me along with few of her college friends for her birthday party. In the party, when she served us fruit punch, she was winking at each one of us and told us to enjoy the drink. None of us in our wild dreams would have imagined that she’ll mix vodka in it. We were all behaving silly and laughing and Susy was having the last laugh at us. Thankfully, she dropped all of us home, to make sure we reach properly. I went home and hit the bed straight, scared to open my mouth. Next day in the class, when Susy explained herself, I was laughing at myself for being so stupid.
7. I started working when I was 18 yrs old. And I have to travel from Mylapore, my home, to Kodambakkam where my office was located. It is bus route 12B that connects me from home to office. Any time of the day, this bus is crowded and I really used to have difficult times travelling in that bus route. And in that bus route was a conductor whom I can remember very well, for his kind words. I used to look up to him because with a Masters in Chemistry, he was working as a bus conductor without any inhibitions. And the thought provoking conversations we had helped me to ease my travel tension. The one thing I am always reminded from that acquaintance was that educational qualifications and job positions never match in real life.
8. I have learnt the art of gift wrapping from a sweet soul in a small card shop, which me and my sister used to frequent during our teens. That person even taught us how to choose gifts, cards and I still thank him for that knowledge he imparted to me.
9. Because I chose to do Diploma in Engineering, I left my school after 10th and joined with the Diploma course. My sister was 2 classes younger than me in school (actually she is only 1 year 3 months younger). By the time, she came to 10th std, all the teachers started referring to her as Uma’s sister. Even though, she did till her 12th in the same school, she was the School Captain, she was the top-scorer in 12th std, she is still referred to as Uma’s sister. I am totally honored, even though she goes crazy sometimes.
10. My email inbox is always clean. All my mails are neatly sorted into various folders. “You are a perfectionist”, says my hubby dear. I try to be perfect in everything I do, even everyday planning. There are lists on my fridge for things to buy, things to do, people to call. If its not written in the list, its stored as a reminder in my mobile. As I get very excited when I go for shopping or cooking for lot of people, these kind of lists help in keeping up the perfect angle in my life.
11. When me and Srini were engaged to be married, we had about 3 months time to prepare for the wedding. And both of us have roamed the whole city and had such wonderful time together. Our outings were sometimes totally silly – we watched Speed for 3 times, a tamil movie Sathi Leelavathi for 5 times, got totally wet in the rain on the lovely Elliots beach, had hot and spicy bajjis in the beach, crazily sped in the bike with the wind in my hair. Altogether I have done things that I never thought I would do.
12. I’ve won many a Bhagwad Gita Recitation Competitions while I was in school. Amazing, I can’t believe it myself now.
13. I am sticker to time and I want people around me also to be like that. Only after shifting to Secunderabad, I’ve understood what low priority people give for punctuality. Sometimes, it is frustrating to wait.
14. I love Koffee with Karan in television. How many ever times it repeats, you can find me there to watch it. And not to forget, Oprah Winfrey show. That’s my fav too.
15. Household chores – Are you not bored doing the same things everyday ? While I can possibly enjoy washing vessels, washing clothes, drying clothes, clearing up the dried vessels and folding
the dried clothes are not my cup of tea. I force myself to do those chores as the perfectionist in me pops up to find fault in others work.
16. I love walking in the rain and have done innumerable number of times while I was young. Which is the reason that my toe thumb nail was filled with dirt while I was young and I had to remove my toe thumb nail two times. I can still remember my scream in the doctor’s clinic.
17. When I started baking, about 5 years back, I used to borrow a sand cooker from a neighbour to bake. The recipe also was shared by my wonderful neighbour. The recipe said, 200gms of flour, 200gms of butter and 200gms of sugar. And I measured equal amounts of flour, butter and sugar using a common cup to make the batter. The cake was a big flop. How stupid of me ! And it took me 3 to 4 trials to understand that 200gms of flour, sugar and butter is not 1 cup of each.
18. In my parents home, girls cutting their hair was considered as taboo and me and my sister were no exception. But, somebody told me that 3rd day after New Moon Day was the best day to cut / trim your hair and it will grow longer as the moon is growing. Now, me and my sister wanted to try it out. We locked ourselves in our room and I trimmed her hair, while she did for me. For the next 10 to 15 days we used to hold the end of hair in our hands while we walked inside the house (so that the trimming doesn’t show), for the fear of getting caught by our elders.
19. I can never play games both in the mobile and in the computer, for which speed is the critical factor and that involves fast movements with your fingers. I try to play the ones that needs logical reasoning.
20. I hate these totally absurd ring tones which people set for their mobiles. Baby crying or laughing is one the silliest according to me. Some people even have this tone for car reverse music. That’s totally absurd as people are shocked to hear it suddenly on roads.
21. I pride myself on the fact that I’ve tremendous control over food habits. I am off sweets, chocolates or anything with sugar. But, if there is one thing in this world, that I would sell my soul for, its POTATO CHIPS. Now, the whole world knows my secret.
22. There are so many little things that bring great pleasure to me. To name a few – a long drive in the car on a rainy day, crying silly at the end of a romantic movie with a happy ending, watching a fav movie first day first show, shop till I drop, coffee get-together with my friends, a good yoga workout, talking through the night with friend / sister / hubby, travelling to exotic places with romantic backdrops with Srini and how I wish that this list never ends.
23. I’ve always dreamt of having a super shaped body, to comfortably wear a great looking bikini.
24. I love doing kolams – as it is part of our everyday ritual. The ones with colours are my fav and I’ve won a few contests too in rangoli.
25. I read my first Sidney Sheldon book when I had just finished 10th std. It was “The other side of midnight”. I can still remember my own shock when I read it. It was revelation and enlightenment at the same time.
Hurray ! I’ve done it. It took me nearly 3 hours to type all these down. I don’t know whether they qualify for the Random Tag, but I’ve tried my best. Thanks Bins, for making me scratch my brain and do this.

Abiyum Nanum – as I see it

A few days back, I watched the tamil movie “Abhiyum Nanum” (Me & Abhi). What an awesome movie! Its been a very long time (after the movie Mozhi), I felt so touched by a tamil movie.
Even though one can find similarities with the English movie Father of the Bride, Abiyum Nanum is class apart as far as the tamil movie audiences are concerned.

The simple tale of father-daughter relationship brings tears to the eyes in a lot of scenes. It shows how the fathers are in total admiration of their daughters and till the daughter gets married, even the wife has to take a seat back.

The story meanders around the likes and dislikes of the daughter, how she convinces her father
every time and how the father sheepishly admits finally that his daughter is always right.

When the daughter chooses to marry a Punjabi, the father is at the end of his wits. How can my
daughter choose this man ? What does she see in him ? How can she love him so much ? Why
is she not even looking at me when this Punjabi is around ?
Actually, it is not this particular man that the father is against. Any man his daughter chooses to
marry will have to face his bitter words to begin with. Till the father is really convinced that this
man is the right person for his daughter, mustard splutter from his face. Every dialogue,
scene that father-daughter duo enact deserves real good appreciation.

Fantastic direction, each scene better than the previous one, a must see for all men who love
their daughters more than their life.