Day 13 : What are you excited about?

Right now :

  1. This online HTML/CSS/Javascript I am taking on Coursera. I have stayed put and actually finished the first week. Here I am, creating an ordered list using HTML tags, on my own blog. How cool!
  2. Starting my own software development team, which I aim to make into a service-based startup. And eventually a product-based company. It’s called The Mavericks.
  3. The prospect of learning ice skating basics.
  4. Writing my fashion blog The Damsel in.
  5. Planning a vacation in May. As a new year present, the hubby’s got me a planner notebook for 50 places I want to visit.}:)
  6. Reading 100 books this year, of which I am on the verge of completing the first.
  7. My recipe being published in Photoawardme calendar, sponsored by Jamie magazine, for the GCC region. And me being inspired enough to take up cooking on a regular basis. Psst…learning to bake a cake and muffins is in the offing.12507368_1704783346401947_2160340867192427617_n

  8. Running a fun run at the Dubai marathon.
  9. Getting to watch the finale of Downton Abbey soon.
  10. The prospect of turning into an amateur fashion designer. No kidding! I get visions of the garments I wanna make, like Jenna does in The Waitress.

Always :

This can go on and on, but I’ll list only the most important things to me.

  1. Meeting cats. Keeping a pet again someday. Maybe even a cat and a dog!
  2. Raising kids.
  3. Writing.
  4. The quest for an Olympic medal in air pistol shooting.
  5. Experiencing the phenomenon of aurora lights and viewing the sky from the other hemisphere (Southern).
  6. Dancing a night away, like college days. Even Garba in Navratri, for that matter.
  7. Taking 4 vacations a year.
  8. My dream of becoming a DIY pro.
  9. Learning to paint.
  10. The journey of becoming the person I want to be. Only a little remains. Just need discipline and perseverance. Hope to achieve it before I turn 30.

Day 1 : 10 things that make you (me) really happy

This is a real easy prompt.

It takes very little to make me happy.

  1. Cloud patterns
    When I am really sad or just plain saturated, I look at the sky. The cloud patterns at any time of the day remind me of the vastness of life. They are instant mood elevators.
  2. Twilight in solitude
    Continuing from the above, I like to be alone when the first star appears in the evening; the onset of twilight. It makes me all tranquil and happy.
  3. A rose from him
    IMG_20140307_104955 (1)
    In 2007, when Mukesh Ambani bought a jet for his wife, hostel friends were discussing what kind of gifts they would like from their future husbands. I used to say that even a single rose gifted by the special someone will bring a huge smile to my face. That is the only gift I would expect him to give me. And lo behold, the first ever gift (of his own accord) that Abhijeet gave me before our engagement, was a single red rose! Even now, after years, whenever he brings a rose for me, it makes me feel like the happiest girl in the universe.
  4. Cats
    Real or virtual, friendly or distant – cats of all sorts make me happy, as if I am a kid all over again.
  5. Movies that hold special meaning for me
    There are some movies of which I am very possessive. Border, Chupke chupke, Sarfarosh, Hazaaron khwaishen aisi, Dil chahta hai – to name a few. I can see such movies hundreds of times and still enjoy them like the first time I saw them. If I need a happiness booster, and the TV happens to be airing them, it is as pleasant a coincidence as it can be.
  6. Outdoor activities
    I am always game for some gully-cricket, garden badminton or a quick trek. If these activities are with a competitive person(s), it is all the more fun.
  7. Writing
    Although I am a big procrastinator when it comes to actually putting down my thoughts on paper, I am at my happiest best when I am writing. It is akin to a state of complete freedom from all the worldly worries- the Zen state. I wonder if I can call that being happy. ๐Ÿ™‚
  8. Shopping
    I seldom spend much. But when I set out shopping, I spend substantially. The whole shopping activity infuses me with a kind of happiness one can only associate with a school kid getting new clothes and textbooks at the end of May. Be it anything – clothes, jewellery, stationery, home decor…etc.
  9. Day dreaming
    I day dream, like any writer would. My day dreams though are more focussed on improving the self. The kind of day dream where I have established a steady daily routine, my desktop and computer hard disk is free of junk files, my closet does not have any unnecessary clothes and I spend my time only on the activities which will help me further my creativity and fitness – is the ultimate ‘happy’ doze for me.
  10. Starting something new
    I have this philosophy that one should never ever settle down ‘ambition-wise’ after having a steady income, a decent home and a loving family with lifelong friends. That is the base of life, the building however has to be built on it with things that you start doing and gradually excel in. So when I start working on something I have always wanted to do, I feel a sudden rush of happiness which is like a kid heading to school on the first day. (Eh yes, I was one of those rare variety of kids who liked school and did not cry on the first day!)

Liebster Award and a few interesting Qs & As

Thank you Aseem Rastogi of Transition of Thoughts for conferring this Award on me. Sorry for being so late, but better late than never, eh? ๐Ÿ™‚

No, it’s not a lobster given to me because I lie! ๐Ÿ˜

Liebster is German for dearest,sweetest, pleasantest, etc. *beams*

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The rules are very similar to the Elevenses tag that I have done earlier on my blog :

1. Thank the people who have nominated you for this one and post a link to their blog

2. Display the award in your blog by including it as an image in the post or a widget

3. Answer the 11 questions given to you by the one who nominated you

4. Nominate 11 deserving bloggers (those who have less than 1000 followers)

5. Create a new list of questions for the bloggers to answer

6. Once they have been tagged, keep them informed about the same and also provide a link to the post

I do not have any fresh blogger to nominate. It reminds me I have not kept up with the recent flock of budding bloggers for quite a few years.

Please do not hesitate to pick up this Award from me, for yourself, if you land here and fit the criteria above. The questions that I want you to answer, are here. Do leave a link in the comments, so that we can hop over to read your interesting take on them.

Moving on to the absolutely stunning questions, which made me stop and take ‘jayza’ of my current self :

1. What product (eg: a book, pen, paper etc.) would you associate your personality to and why?

I associate myself with a box of crayons. My soul takes on the colours of one of the crayons according to my moods and mindset, on a day. And mind you, ‘blue’ for me is more a colour of tranquility than of melancholy.

2. Whatโ€™s the craziest thing you have done at school? Or were you a very nice and sweet little child? ๐Ÿ˜‰

I used to feed goats with leaves of Eucalyptus trees in PT periods and lunch intervals. I broke the spokes of the bicycle of a boy from our class in front of him, because he was supposedly bullying my friend and not letting her take out her cycle from the stands. Turns out, it was the other guy who was the actual bully, of the two guys there. ๐Ÿ˜ I apologized later.

Lastly, I wrote an entire children’s novel in 8th standard. And the whole school, including the teachers, followed my work! That is perhaps the craziest thing…the list is endless though…

3. Describe the feeling of blogging in one word?

Cathartic.

4. If you were packed off to Tristan Da Cunha (famous as the loneliest island in the world), who would you prefer to be with? Or would you be alone? And why?

Well, I suppose I’ll have to go with Abhijeet. I’d like to take a pet cat with me.

5. What is the best and the worst thing you have heard about your blog?

Best thing :

Here’s a true incident. I stumbled on a foreign writer’s blog. I wrote to her in reply to her poem, in the comments section : a poem based on hers. I also posted a link of one of my tags for her to look at. Next day, I found that it was deleted! I wrote to her again. She said to me that she doesn’t accept Awards and wouldn’t have me spamming her blog. I had indeed overlooked her policy, and hence, I apologised. Later, I posted the version that I remembered on my own blog. She said it was nice. I migrated my blog a few months later. She must have seen it in her trackbacks, came there, and posted the most amazing comment. Ofcourse, she did not recognise that the poem was posted previously on my other blog also. Have a look. Do visit her poem too, it has the conversation about the comments. I still love her writing ๐Ÿ™‚

Worst thing :

I don’t remember a single bad thing…though at home, if I am writing a blog, they do shout at me to get up and do ‘something actually worthwhile’. But that’s not about my blog, that’s about me being lazy ๐Ÿ™‚

6. Life as a bed of roses or life full of obstacles, you prefer? (The middle ground is not an option ;))

Bed of roses, of course. *dreams of being a Disney princess in a castle*

7. Any specific book / movie which has shaped the journey of your life?

‘Towards the silver crests of Himalayas’ and ‘Why am I an atheist’. I read the latter first(in 10th) and was flabbergasted that if there is really no God, how would I survive on my own? I read the former in 1st year of Engineering, and it cleared a lot of doubts in my head. It made a rational believer out of me.

8. If you have just been announced as the winner of โ€˜Who Wants to Be a Millionaireโ€™, what would you do with the money?

Keep a fair amount aside for shopping/travelling immediately, and entrust the rest to husband’s care. He would know how to invest it.

9. Whatโ€™s that one dream which if fulfilled will give a new meaning to your life?

If I get published by a noted publishing house, it would give me the confidence to write my life away. Because that is what I want to do with my life.

10. What is the most exciting thing you have ever done (or you want to do)?

I want to build a tree-house by myself (since I was a kid). As a kid,I have spent days on end devising a strategy to use neem tree twigs to build a hut. If I get to build it with children of my own, that’d be the most exciting thing.

11. Are you an optimist or a pessimist?

I am a perennial optimist. Though I can be cynical at times…

Letter to the 15 year old me.


Hi me!

I am looking at you from an imaginary time curtain. Just like Mathew McConaughey saw himself across the library wall in Interstellar. I am silly, how would you know? You are yet to see the movie. Or have you seen it? ‘Cos I am you! Okay…let’s not confuse ourselves. You have enough confusions to deal with already.

Hey, you know what? When I was you, you wanted to be me. But now that I am here, I envy you. I want to be you!

You were eager to step out of home into the world. I – want to go back home – in that cosy childhood room, where cold-coffees magically appeared on exam nights, where you wrote slogans like “The more you sweat in peace, the more you bleed in war”, where you listened to Munnabhai MBBS’ “Chhan Chhan” every night in PLs before the 12th exam.

You were good, you know?! You didn’t have to burden yourself with everyone’s expectations of your score in HSC. I wish I was there to tell you that. You did the right thing by whiling away 11th – eating samosas on the road everyday after college, trying to get permission to see the frog dissection in Biology class – just because you were curious, getting all cheeky when teachers shooed you outta class for something you’d not done and then smiling when they acknowledged that they got to know that you weren’t the mischief maker.

You gave your best towards life. You tried to indulge in sports, you spent evenings on the terrace waiting for the first star to appear, you played your heart out on the snowy cotton that used to be at our place every Ginning season.

Hey, how did I forget Chunky! You made your best friend at 15. Chunky, the great – who grew up from a kitten to a mother cat to a veteran grandma cat. She was your sole companion in happiness and sadness. I think she’s the one who made me what I am. She taught you to be fearless (as a kitten), to keep your inner child alive (as a grown-up cat), to learn to detach from worries (when she hunted – all focused or when she rested – all carefree). Now, I have most of those traits. (Only, I lack in the physical fitness department – she was a great athlete! I am not. ๐Ÿ˜› )

You know you liked a boy from your class? Aah…I know what you’ll say – “Everyone likes a boy from their class when they’re 15”. I agree. It’s that magical an age, isn’t it? I just wanted to tell you that you are now married to him! Awesome…eh?

So yeah, that’s pretty much what I gotta tell you right now. You’ve turned out okay…not as famous or successful as you had imagined. But you’ve got most of your dreams fulfilled. You wanted to be an engineer – you are one. You wanted to get married to a guy who fulfilled your checklist – he does. What’s more…you knew him already! You wanted to write – you’re doing that. You wanted work to be interesting – you love your work. (Politics, movies, RAW; you ask? Oh, who knows! They may happen as well. ๐Ÿ™‚ )

I just want one thing from you. Give me the hope you had for life ahead. For you, every year ahead was a possibility. Yet, you weren’t freaked out by the unknown. You loved to wake up and LIVE the day fully. I do that too…but I get tired – physically and mentally. I think too much kiddo. Give me your ability to block worrisome thoughts and live in the moment. You’ll do that for me, won’t you?

Love,
The 28 year old you.