Category Archives: Musings

Helen Miss and Music

When I was 4 years old and in Kinder Garten, I had a Helen Miss who used to be our Music Teacher. She played that lovely piano in the music room where there were tiny chairs lined up against the wall. We kids would fight for the spot right next to the piano. Sitting there, you can watch Helen Miss play, feel the piano’s reverberation, sing along – it was the best spot in that whole damn room. She was Goan. And among the many many songs she taught, I remember “Gimme Oil In My Lamp Keep It Burning Burning Burning” the most. Until today.
Today, in the shower, I caught myself humming a song of  which I only knew the first line. Helen Miss and her smile and the piano keys and her songs. I was 4 again. Talk about blast from the past.
What song was it, you ask?
“O Give me a home, where the buffalo roam”…. tra-la-la-tra-la-la :)

Leave a comment

Filed under Musings, Nostalgia

“I Will Always Love You”, Whitney.

Leave a comment

Filed under Musings

Vices. Unforgiven.

Insecurity. Insignificance.
I feel these are the two vices that infest the times of 2009.

Years ago, I asked my cousin brother a question — What would be unforgiveable in a relationship?
We were out for a walk that winter night. He stopped in his tracks and almost immediately said — dishonesty and betrayal. Here was a man, whom I idolized for always being caring, kind, understanding and patient… with an unforgiving flame in his eyes.

Must be huge, I thought.

Tonight, I am thinking of the same question and I was surprised that I actually rate insecurity and insignificance really high up on that chart of unforgivable things. Damn it, it is important, I figured. It truly is unforgivable if someone makes you insecure or if someone makes you feel smaller than the tiniest atom in your being.

I don’t forgive easily at all. Not something I am proud of, but I am just putting it out there.
Call me an attention-seeker, if you must. But a nice word, a hug, a thought, a compliment wont necessarily kill anyone. Just that we don’t deem it important. Just that we think we will lose something if we open our mouths and say something nice.

Not good. Not healthy, you know.
It saddens me.


This was a piece I wrote way back in August 2009.

Leave a comment

Filed under Musings

The Year That Was

So it is almost the end of the year that was, and I couldn’t help but be in a retrospective mood. There were good things and there were bad things. Lots of new starts and some much neede closures. Oh, and shock and horror too – I just looked at my blog and realised that I had made exactly ONE blog entry in 2010! Of course, we will not count this one as a legitimate entry. :)

Discovering Yoga
The year began on a positive note – I picked up Yoga and was pretty kicked about it. I remember trudging through the deep Milwaukee snow and getting into that sweaty Yoga class and feeling awesome about it. I still am an advocate of Yoga, but the classes have slowed down. Mainly because I moved and couldn’t find the right teacher. Why not practice Yoga on your own, asks some of my friends. To them I say, it just isn’t the same.

Joys of Cooking
Among the other things I picked up this year, the most prominent one was cooking. Well, I have been cooking for over 12 years now, but I have been experimenting. I hosted a food blog and overused my camera to click food pictures. I never used to read food blogs, but now, I am a fan of Edible Garden. I try to work hard on presenting food decently rather than plopping it on a plate. Oh yeah, that blog needs some serious work. Now, there’s an incomplete project of 2010.

Picture Project
Speaking of projects, I took up “Project365: One year of my life in photos”. It is going pretty well. Of course, there are those slow weeks too. But I have managed to be pretty regular even during the busiest of times. SunshineGirl inspired me to get started on it, and interestingly I began posting those pics the day she posted her 365th! She is always taking up projects, this SunshineGirl — her latest being Korean and French languages.

Marital Matters
One of the biggest changes that happened to me in 2010 has to do with the change in my marital status. Yep, I am a missus. And a happy one, at that. It has been five months and the excitement doesn’t seem to end. And I mean that in a good way. Right after we got married in July, a lot of people asked me “How does it feel?” and I was not really sure what they meant when they asked that. Feel what? Because to my husband and me, life pretty much seemed the same. Of course we had thrown a huge party for 300 people and did not have to worry about cleaning up after that. We unwrapped a lot of gifts and got to go on our honeymoon – all exciting stuff – don’t get me wrong. But when we got back home, life pretty much seemed the same like how it was when we were dating. BUT. Then we gave it some time. A month. Two months. Domestic life is pretty different, my friends, and NOW I know what those people were asking. Bad timing, peeps! Marriage has been a beautiful experience thus far and I hope it will remain so. The thought that there is a person you love whom you can go to, at the end of the day really makes me want to vagabond less and be HOME.

Vagabonding. That has worked out real well for me. And with a perfect travelling buddy in my husband, life’s good. Chicago, SFO, NYC, Boston, Cape Code, Zurich, Paris, Vegas, Hollywood, Delhi. Not a bad deal at all. And I haven’t even mentioned the small local places that I went to for Photo sessions – Central Park, Devil’s Lake, Lake Michigan, Liberty State Park. Heck, we even made our move from WI to NJ a road trip!

Homeward Bound
Moving and setting up a home has been one of the high points of the year. I love our home and it was a project that I put a lot of thought into. Everything from the color themes to the furniture was well thought out. It truly does look like something he and I would put together. :)

I cannot end this note without mentioning the best part of having lived 2010. I met people who I thought I wouldn’t meet again (or maybe not that soon or at that place).

I met my English teacher, Sam Sir, after almost 10-14 years. And he was someone I thought I will never meet again. The last time I remember meeting him was when he gave us kids one wooden bead each. It had native American prints painted on it and I think I strung it to my bag with a shoelace – for good luck. Yes, I was a nut that ways. This meeting was different. We lunched and talked and walked and laughed. It was a short short meeting, but it forever be burnt in my memory, Sam Sir. THANK YOU!

I got to hang out with the Leena-Deepak team late May in SFO. We had fun! I last met Leena in Kuwait when we were in 9th standard. With schools and countries changed, we lost touch. Then, thanks to the wonder that we all call the internet, we became close friends once we reconnected. It has been a fun ride, LeAn, and yes, I feel horrible that your letter got lost!

The craziest thing that happened during my wedding time was this bridal shower my girlfriends hosted for me. It was awesome. Imagine a room full of the ladies you love and cherish. College gang, sweethearts from work and all over the world were in there. I have loads of pictures but I will not put them up, even if you ask me to! The high point of that evening was it turned out to be a reunion of sorts of the Kalindi bunch of journos. We have been trying to get together for ages. Thanks Shiv! I am still waiting for those pics, though!!

The latest fun was when Shravan was in town. Two months ago, when I shared pictures of my place with him, he said he wished he could come over and visit us at home. Fate (and work) played out well. He spend a day of fun and laughter and breakfast banter with us. Unforgettable, unforgettable.

There are so many things I haven’t detailed out: friends having babies, close people getting married, siblings being missed, making new friends, rediscovering the joy of postal cards and letters, new gadgets and gizmos added, picking up an old unfinished book, playing Scrabble and those AngryBirds, celebrating Diwali and Dusshera, etc .

And for all this, I am thankful that I lived through 2010.

1 Comment

Filed under Musings

PK and VT in CP

We met after so many months. In fact, we planned this one-day meeting so many months in advance!We both were not in Delhi and yet fixed the venue to be CP.

I stood inside the Metro train, squished against the glass door, by the Trade Fair crowd. Going from station to station at snail’s pace, I worried I would make him wait — as always. It’s not like I plan it that ways. But something always comes up. There was this one time when I reached the spot bang on time. But still I kept him waiting — because he got there BEFORE time.

When we finally met, he was wearing a light colored jacket. Reasonably dressed for a November in Delhi, I thought. Look at me in my crumply old kurta! We hugged and continued an old conversation wherever we had last left it. It did not feel like we were meeting after ages. We walked past Wengers. He was hurrying me towards the new Bercos.

“PK, please can we eat first? I am hungry!”

Sitting in Bercos in familiar ambience, I munched on crispy honey chicken with seasame seeds on top. I gulped down some fruit beer. Oh this was heavenly, I thought. We spoke about things, this and that, and people. We spoke about life in general. Then, chewing on a toothpick, I walked around in the inner circle of CP. He and I browsed over those pirated books. They have become really expensive, I lamented. He told me to not buy these books. He always tells me. I always stop by these books. It is a ritual we always did.
We walked towards Janpath and realised that the Snow White store was missing from the inner circle. I have found out that they have closed down. Not that I ever bought anything from there but I still missed it. I bought some gifts for the new friends I had made. We shopped at the Hidesign store. We walked through the smelly subway tunnels. We passed beggar children and hawkers selling us tiny white hankerchiefs. We walked past the expensive Khadi shop and Regal cinema hall. It was playing 2012. In Hindi.

We walked down one of the radials and went into that Barista located next to People Tree. Mighty expensive everything has become, I commented like an outsider. In there, I tasted heaven in the form of a cup of hot cafe mocha. We exchanged gifts, unwrapped them, admired them, thanked each other, repacked them. We spoke nonstop. About what, I wouldn’t remember now.

Towards the end of the day, we walked towards Shivaji Stadium. The familiar bus terminal with all those rickety buses and the shady bus drivers. One by one, the buses came and went. We sat in the bus stop drinking from a bottle of Bisleri. It was getting dark and he told me I should go home soon. His bus was also here. I saw a DTC 910 coming and heard the radio blaring some Himesh number. After a moment of hesitation, I jumped onto its footboard. He was startled for a second and then smiled in approval.
I thanked him for a beautiful CP day, found a seat, adjusted my scarf and looked out of the window. Without a second thought, he took out his cell phone and called out to me, “PK, smile”.

Thank you, VT. It was a special day.


Filed under Musings