Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The whispers of beauty

Art tells a story. Any kind of art.

In paintings, I like the work of impressionists. Van Gogh's art talks to you...screams out loud. Pleads with tears in its eyes. Each stroke tells of pain and yearning. Of wanting to reach for something that isn't there. Its not dandy and pretty, like most art is. Its not dark and sinister either. Its just real.

Or you may prefer sculptures and carvings. The Italian kinds perhaps, with every fountain on their roads a museum in itself. Or the exotic carvings in Indian temples. Or even the age old carvings from long gone civilizations like Harappa and Indus Valley.

But the most talkative form of art I believe is body art. The body is a precious thing. It is the one thing that is yours to own, to keep forever. If you express yourself through body art, it MUST mean something to you. Something that will remain for the rest of your life. Coz the art will! If you do it for someone, it is the ultimate proposal, the supreme expression of devotion. It screams - I care enough for you to do this. That I will love you till the day I die! That's a lot of love to digest!

Every art tells a story. What's yours?

Friday, June 24, 2011

3 candles on the cake!!

3 months old and more beautiful everyday! My precious turns a quarter of an year today Smile !! I read in a book that it is no wonder that just when the parents have had it up till here with taking care of the baby and are all tired out, the lil one decides to look them in the eye and give her first smile. Because that’s the most rewarding gift I have gotten. Since a few weeks, Nyda has taken to talking back when I chat with her and giving me huge toothless smiles, often giggling at the silly faces I make. I’m sure she must congratulating herself on finally making mom into a clown but its so worth it.

She is the biggest surprise of my life. In every way. She surprises me everyday with some new antic. And just when I feel I have her figured out, she goes and surprises me right back! Take my word for it, you just can’t predict a 3 month old! My old life seems unrecognisable now. I barely have time to pen down 2 words and the summer is slipping by without us going swimming even once. OK that’s a stretch, rather weeks slip by where I haven’t even left the confines of my house. But as my sister in law told me, it gets easier. The more time passes with her, she doesn’t get easier to handle but it is definitely more gratifying!

Nyda also had her first vacation this month. We gathered our courage and drove down to Landsdowne, a lovely little hill station that is cloudy all day. I’m glad to report that she approved of her parents' travelling lifestyle, was a doll in the ride there and absolutely loved the nip in the air! She even surprised me by sleeping 8 hours every night when we were there. Ofcourse reverting back to her 3-4 hour sleep routine the second we came back home! Perhaps it is time to move to the hills!!!

Wishing you all the happiness in the world my love. I wish I could remove the thorns from your path, and I will till I can, but more importantly I hope to give you the courage to see the roses beyond them! Happy Birthday…will have your piece of the cake :P

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Survival Guide for Women

Delhi - infamous for its crime against women. Having said that, let me state on record that I have lived in the so called safe cities of Mumbai and Ahmedabad and have faced the same problems there as well. As a matter of fact, I faced more problems in Ahmedabad than I did in Delhi. So its not a city thing....it is just a matter of understanding the mindset of people and taking a few precautions.

My latest article on Rediff discusses this in detail. A sort of a Survival Guide for women in India (or elsewhere in the world in my opinion). Read it here

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hangover 2 - the craziness knows no bounds!!

All those people that turn their nose up at Hangover 2 and say that its nothing new....tell them to go hike! The only problem with this film is that it comes in after the crazy hit Hangover and thus our expectations are already high up there. Which is fine, because this film doesn't fail to entertain!!

Alright come on....it is not a wonder that the story is predictable. I mean there are only so many ways to depict a hangover and blackout! Thankfully, the similarity ends there. The movie takes off 2 years after where we left the 4 mad men last time. This time, it is Stu the dentist (yes the same one who lost a tooth and married a hooker:P) who is tying the knot all the way over in Thailand!! As expected, Phil and Doug are making the journey across and as an after thought, Alan is invited to join them as well. And thank god he is.

What follows is complete mayhem. Even a strict vow on Stu's part not to have a bachelor party or any alcohol doesn't help and the wolfpack finds themselves in situations crazier than last time (if that is possible)! There is mafia involved, women, dancing, tatoos, a monkey who likes to smoke, a missing finger and another special appearance by Mike Tyson.

Each character plays their part perfectly but as usual, it is Alan who takes the cake. He is just fabulous as the mad guy in a zone of his own! There isn't a dull moment in the film with him around!

Go watch the film. Or in the least, get the DVD. Some popcorn, a drink, dim lights and your Saturday is set (which is the only way we manage to watch movies now with a 2 month old!!). Its a roller coaster ride you wouldn't want to get off from!

Rating: 4 on 5
Paisa Wasool Moment: When the dancer in drag looks incredulously at the 4 who thought he was a woman and demands, "Why do you think this place is called Bang'kok'???"   

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Delhi University breaks hearts again....

In all this noise about Baba Ramdev and hunger fasts (my opinion on these reserved for another post) there is one important thing that got overlooked in the papers the past week. The cut offs for colleges in Delhi University. This page may not have gotten the eyeballs that the Ramdev saga got, nevertheless, I'm sure it led to thousands of smiles and millions of heartbreaks. And I realised, nothing changes. The cut offs? Take for example the subject I wanted to study - Psychology Hon. Only 4 colleges offered it in Delhi and none of these had a cut off below 89%. A quick look at any other subject tells the same story. With hardly 2-3 courses offered to people below 83-85%, DU remains elitist as always.

Let me tell you a story.

It was the turn of the millenium, the year 2000. I had just given my 12th boards from the most prestigious school in Delhi, DPS RKP, and the results were out. As we checked the results online, I wasn't too disappointed. A 78% with fabulous marks in the subjects I loved (Accounts and English) and not too bad marks in what I loathed (Maths). Naive as I was, I was quite confident on getting a good college with the course that I wanted - Psy Hon. in DU. My father had just got transfered to Ahmedabad but my undying loyalty to Delhi and my friends here got me to convince my parents to let me stay in Delhi. I spent the summer blissfully unaware of what was to happen. The first tremor came when the first cut off list of DU was released. My course was not offered below 85%. With some hope in my heart, I held on to the belief that the next list would fit me in. And the earth shook when the 2nd list was released. All seats had already been filled in, there was no second list. And so confident I had been that I hadn't filled the form for any other course. With that went my hope and my dreams. I remember spending half a day in tears not knowing what to do. As always, my safety net, my best friend kicked in. Her father knew the HOD of English honours in Gargi College and he pulled in a few favours and she agreed to let me sit for the entrance test even though the seats were closed.

Before the result of my English test could be released, my father had approached the principal of a good college in Ahmedabad offering the course I had wanted. And I had to make my decision overnight. Either stay back in Delhi and pursue a course that was not what I wanted to study or go away for the first time, bid adieu to a life I knew and start afresh. I took the plunge. I got on the next flight, gave my interview and it was all settled. Thus started my life in its new avtar.

Did I miss out on anything? I believe not. I had a fantastic college life, made great friends, studied the most fascinating subjects, was allowed to shine like a gem in academics and extra curriculars not being the crazy cut throat university that Delhi was. And after 3 years, I gave the CAT like millions across India and still got into the college that I had wanted - MICA. My life did not take a different route because of this detour. It just got enriched. With people, with experiences, with flavors.

The moral of this grand saga is that if your heart broke when you read that paper with the cut off lists, do not fret. Gather the broken pieces and look elsewhere. Your life may change dramatically and the path may be new, but it will take you into exotic lands and into a life that you'll look back upon with a smile. Trust me, it wasn't a decision I will ever regret.  

Sitaaron ke aage jahaan aur bhi hai...

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Vote for Nikon Photo Contest

Entered 2 photographs for the Nikon Contest. It is a vote based contest. Do vote by clicking on the vote button under the photographs if you like them.

Photo 1: Click here

Photo 2: Click here

I got your back!!

Love is  not a phase. It cant increase or decrease. Either you love or you dont. Sometimes in the race of life, we forget who's hand we've been holding while running all this time. We think that hand is slowing us down. Taking us in a different direction than where we want to go. But if we pause for a moment and look, the person running with us is always running one step slower. Not to slow us down. Instead, making sure they have our back and that they can save us from falling when we stumble.

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