Category: Friends

awesome lunch!

It could not have been a more better day!

Last Sunday when me and my Canadian friends Kally,Sally and Sonia were picked up by Shirley,my friend at workplace,to first shop for groceries at Reliance Fresh on the way and then cook and eat too 😉

It was planned on Saturday,and I was really not sure if I could really cook with perfection,since no cooking happening since I moved to this new place where I get to eat food made by the cook. I was excited and so were my friends…though I made a boundary beforehand that the food might not turn out well…but this never dampened their spirits!

We reached Shirley’s place by 11:45 and met her ever sweet mother in law,and the 25 days old puppy Tommy,who was so much excited to see all the pretty ladies around him. Shirley’s big house has two big aquariums and three ponds outside full of fishes…coconut trees,mango tress in the backyard and a big kitchen were we were allowed to experiment 😉 our culinary skills. It was such a pleasant change!

Thanks to my experience in outsourcing 😉 activities of peeling and chopping onion and garlic was happily implemented by Sonia,taking out mint and coriander leaves by Kally and Sally. And rest of the initial preparations were managed by me,Shirley and her MIL.

Then began the real cooking,accompanied by me acting as the host of a cooking show 😉 and my viewers and cameramen being the ever enthusiastic trio! In some time we had a good spread of food ready which included matar paneer,palak daal,basmati rice,cucumber raita,potato fry,and fresh mint chutney…and trust me the food was really good :):D And while we were busy eating what we made,Shirley’s MIL made fresh grape juice and mango juice for us…

We could have asked for nothing more:) It was an awesome lunch!


In this fast-paced contemporary world, we have become strictly controlled in both the capacity and quality of contact with our societal set-up. The role of mobile telecommunications in the 21st century might be manifold; however the mobile phone’s role of being the facilitator of gossip and thus restoring our sense of connection and providing a remedy to the pressures and alienation of modern life is something I can vouch about.

Yes, mobiles are a ‘social lifeline’ in this bitty and separating world!

And yeah,you heard it right,I said ‘gossip’…now lets not judge the word ‘gossip’ with any pre-conceived notion of it being what we all claim,’ we don’t do’ ;).

This is a proven fact that two-thirds of all human conversation is gossip :), because this ‘vocal grooming’ is essential to our social, psychological and physical well-being 😛  🙂

Mobiles facilitate tête-à-tête…mobiles have increased and enhanced this vital lively activity, by allowing us to hear and say ‘anytime, anyplace, anywhere’ and to text as well as talk :P. Mobile chitchat is a helpful and important new stress-buster :)…

When I think about my own experience, I feel life’s taken a 210 degree round in the domain of phones, starting from the first land line phone at home to smart phone in my hands at present. I have left remaining 150 degrees, because it’s still turning day by day aligning itself with this mobile technology  🙂

The technology associated with mobile phones grew like anything. From the era of black and white screens of bulky hand sets with antenna to sleek and light handsets with color screens.

Latest mobile phones are loaded with music, camera, accessibility of WAP services,GPS and full internet access using technologies such as GPRS,ability to send and receive pictures and videos through MMS and bluetooth.Sound recording and video recording is so easy with mobile phone with these features. Most people do not walk around with a video camera, but do carry a phone. The arrival of video camera phones is transforming the availability of video to consumers, and helps fuel citizen journalism.

Till today, I have clear memories of my happiness and excitement on being given my first mobile phone by my parents, when I was in second semester of my engineering. It was a prized procession, securely kept in a girly mobile pouch:).That was a time when incoming calls had become free in India, and keeping a mobile phone looked like affordable for the Indian middle class.

In those days,there was no funda of local and std sms(s) and I still remember that we had sms(s) free from 9 pm in night till early morning at 6, which was fully utilized ;).Whilst I say this, I am amazed at the power and importance of sms(s) offers during college, as in though I have some 250+ sms(s) free,every month, I hardly utilize them as much as in those days,as in which implies I have matured a little :P,nevertheless there is no doubt in youngsters utilizing power of sms(s) like anything ;)…

The best thing about mobile conversation which is often enhanced by the use of the text message as a sort of ‘trailer’, alerting friends to the fact that one is in possession of an interesting item of gossip, but without revealing the details, which are saved for a phone call or meeting.

“You can set someone up with a text message – create the anticipation of what you’re going to say, before you meet up with them. “In our text messages we write the word GOSSIP then dot dot dot so that you know you’re about to receive a bit of juicy gossip.” It’s like a sort of sneak preview thing, you know? I’ll just say enough in the text to get her interested, so when I phone he/she’s like “Oooh, what is it? Tell me! Tell me!”

Then another college funda of using mobile phone in college was ‘missed calls’. I think we made more ‘missed calls’ than the actual calls: P. Infact‘missed calls’ were used by many as substitute for actual real conversation/message. Through some really creative acquaintances ;), I got to know that they have proper set of words for the type of missed call they make:).

Then came a time of ‘unlimited calls’ offer and for we students especially the love birds or the aspiring love birds, this was no way less than a boon. There were many night outs on mobile phones having chatty talk about the details of personal matters and relationships, the sharing of secrets – more or less what we currently mean by gossip (with my beau).I was one of the subscriber to this offer, amongst so many in my college in particular.

Why do we talk so much on phone…and what trusted sources of information convey is, because it helps us to establish, develop and maintain relationships; to bond with other members of our social circle; to clarify our social position and status; to manage reputations; to learn social skills; to learn and reinforce shared values; to resolve conflicts; to build support networks; to win friends and influence people. We may also gossip because we are genetically programmed to do so. According to the psychologist Robin Dunbar (to whom I owe most of the above findings on gossip :)), chitchat is part of our evolutionary hard-wiring – perhaps even the single most important part. Language, he argues, evolved to allow us to tittle-tattle.

What I like the most is a particular tone of voice – high and quick, or sometimes a stage whisper, but always highly animated – which is important in generating a sense of excitement 🙂

“Gossip’s got to start with something like “Oooh – Guess what? Guess what?” or “Hey, listen, listen – you know what I heard?””

“You have to make it sound surprising or scandalous, even when it isn’t really. You’ll go “well, don’t tell anyone, but.” even when it’s not really that big of a secret.”

Many people I know bought their mobiles “just for emergencies”, but increasingly found themselves using the mobile for chatting and gossiping with friends and family, and now believe that the mobile provides a quite different kind of ‘social lifeline’. Some very common thing I heard:

“It was a safety thing to begin with, but now it keeps me in touch with the outside world.”

“It’s my only means of communication – I’d feel completely lost and lonely without it.”

“What you get out of it [mobile gossip] is a sense of being included, being trusted – a sense of belonging to a group”

“And also a sense that people care about you as well”

“Having your phone stolen turns your whole world upside down – without my phone, I feel left out of my social group”

For me, when it’s all getting me down, I’ll go to a quiet corner or even to the loo and call my boyfriend on my mobile – that’s the really good thing about mobiles is that it’s private… I can call from my mobile to my parents,cousins,friends and relatives and we’ll chat about family, food,bollywood and relationships… Even if I’m sitting at my desk it feels like I’m at home, that sort of warm feeling – it’s like I can escape from work into a different world for a bit, you know? A more familiar world! :).

Mobiles allow me to keep up with the small details of what’s going on in people’s lives, and that’s what makes me feel close to them. It allows me to maintain that relationship or friendship. It’s a connection – a feeling of bonding. It’s comforting. If I am bored on a train or fed up in traffic,I phone someone for a chat and feel better. Everyone’s so busy these days that it’s the only way of keeping in touch. I gossip more on the mobile with friends I don’t see often – I can report things to them as I hear them.

Those non stop calls from friends and loved ones on birthday and festivals…that early morning wake up call…that on time call on Valentine’s day….that fight too :P,when a date was forgotten…those pranks…those surprises…all the love,all the tantrums and all the arguments 😉 ….none of them will leave my memories ever 🙂

There are so many things,incidents,memories associated with mobile phones;I can go on and on and on…Even if we have no topic to talk about ,we can anytime talk about the latest mobile phones,latest talk plans,latest features on mobile phones ,sharing of songs between mobile phones and the best time pass or rather utilization 😉 would be photo sessions with our mobile cameras… :)No doubt that mobile phones are show stoppers on the ramp of activities with friends and families… 🙂

Conversations is, and always has been, good for us – essential to our social, psychological and even physical well-being. The mobile phone  is helping us to manage, acclimatize and endure. This is perhaps the most remarkable and significant impact: that a technological advance is helping to counter the unfavorable effects of previous technological advances. Mobile phones are re-creating the more normal, benevolent communication patterns of pre-industrial era: we are using space-age know-how to return to stone-age gossip!

Somehow,one thing I feel is…that due to the presence of the mobile phones with us,we do not talk to strangers when traveling anymore. In the past, several people waiting for a bus would engage in a conversation while they were waiting. People who traveled the same routes every day might develop friendships along the way. This situation does not happen anymore. Today when people are waiting for a bus, they just pull out their cell phones and speak with old friends, missing out on the opportunity to make new ones. In large cities, many people do not know their neighbors, even though they may have lived in the same neighborhood for years. As a society, we are beginning to lose the face-to-face contact that was such an important part of our lives in the past.

Cell phones are a great asset in aiding in our every day lives. We should remember, however, to hang up every once in a while and pay attention to the world around us!:)

I am posting this entry for Tata DOCOMO, OneTouch Net Phone, IndiBlogger Contest

please do promote my post 🙂

Though this is my third south Indian state,I never felt the need of learning the local language as much as I felt its need in my stay in Chennai.
Yes,people…before Chennai I have stayed in Hyderabad and then Bangalore,however in both these cities,I never felt the need to learn Telugu or Kannada respectively as much as I felt its necessity in Chennai.
Nevertheless,I have interest in learning the languages and somehow I manage to catch the meaning of languages,if I listen to it with concentration.And I am thankful of my knowledge of Sanskrit,learnt in school.Though I never scored great in it… :P…And I still remember what our Sanskrit teacher used to say about power of Sanskrit knowledge.
Snap!coming to present times or better to say starting from period of my entry in south India…on my rendezvous with languages Telugu,Kannada and at present Tamil;
I always wanted to learn these languages,however could not learn them to be make fluent use of them.
I remember pestering few of my college friends in Hyderabad to teach me Telugu and in fact they taught me too.First thing I learnt was counting numbers in Telugu…ookati,rendu,mudu,nalgu…. :)then some sentences like…,”what is your name?”’s translated as “nee peru enti?”;”bagunara”, “bagunawa”,”matladtadu”,”ivu”,”chappu”,”nidrostundi”,”kuchchu”…and the famous “Entraa!” heard in college days!
Our college had good mix of people from different states and life was easy with Hindi and English and some times the indigenous local Hyderabadi Hindi…”Sahi boltun na!” 😀
However,gradually the initial interest in learning the language,became less and also one of my Telugu friend in college said,she should not teach me any more Telugu,as they will then not be able to speak anything and everything in Telugu when they were in my room with my room-mate 😦 Though they still do not know I somehow managed to understand the gist of their conversation 😉 😛
Some Telugu sentence which I still remember…
Neeku telugu vachchaa/thelusa?
Do you know telugu?
Meeku telugu vachchaa/thelusa?
Do you know telugu? (to elders)
Naaku telugu raadhu/thelidhu.
I don’t know Telugu.
Em chestunnav? (‘Emi chestunaru’ is more formal)
What are you doing?
Nee peru emiti??
What is your name?
Hitech city ki vasthava?? (To ask an autowala)
Will you come to Hitech city?
Inka okka sari cheppu
Tell once more
After Telugu it was time for Kannada…yes though in Bangalore,language is not much of problem,and in my group in Tech Mahindra,most of them being Kannada,they would though not let me feel out-of-place by speaking in Kannada when I am there,but some how I tried listening to their conversation,and gradually learnt quite lot of Kannada…
Some of sentences I learnt in Kannada…
What is your name?…Ninna hesarenu?/ Ninna hesaru yenu?
Did you have your lunch?…Oota madhidheya?/ oota aayitha?
How are you?…Hegiddhiya?/ Neenu heghiddhiya?
I am fine…Nanu chenagiddene.
Why are they late for the meeting?…Avaru meetingige yaake thadavadharu?
How did you come?…Neenu hege bandhe?
And the latest experience of being in Chennai,the need of knowing Tamil is felt when I have to negotiate for an auto,when I have to buy something from a local grocery shop,when I have to order for my evening snacks in office,when I have to ask for some help in finding an address,when I have to instruct my maid for something,when I have to….Yes!it is a never-ending list…Though I do not have much of Tamil speaking company here,I started learning Tamil;just for your information my room mates are Mallus and I am sure by the time I leave this place,I would have learnt Malyalam too 🙂 😛
Coming to my a b c d of Tamil…It starts daily in morning with me trying to get an auto…I use names of places without using any other word in English or Hindi or Tamil,Thank God! names of places are the same in all languages…Then I say “evaalavu”,which means “how much”;then if the auto fellow gives some numbers…Thank God!till date all of them used English number system or sign language,and then if I feel it is more,I say “Anna!  jyasti”…means “Brother! it’s more”…then I say,”Anna fifty sollunga!” which means “Brother! say fifty”….Phew!this is how I get an auto and then “Néraa ponga! Idathu/Valathu thirumpunga”,which means “Go straight! then turn left/ right!”…I hope none of auto walas read this ;)…but I feel they are smart enough to make out I am not Tamilian…
Few more sentences I learnt in Tamil…
Good/ Bad/ So-So…Nallathu / Mosam / Appadithaan.
Big/ Small…Periya / Chinna
Today/ Now…Indru / Ippothu
Tomorrow/ Yesterday…Naalai / Nétru
Yes/ No…Amaam / illai
Here you go! (when giving something)…Indhaa.
Do you like it?…unakku idhu pidikkuthaa?
I really like it!…Enakku idhu romba pidikkuthu.
I’m hungry/ thirsty…Enakku pasi / thagam irukku.
In The Morning/ Evening/ At Night…Kalaiyil / Maalaiyil / Rathri (or) iravil
This/ That. Here/There…Idhu / Adhu. Ingu / Angu
So here I am ‘Jack of many…read 5… languages…master of none!’
And friends,as if this was not enough,I still want to learn few foreign languages!
Lets see when I will be able to do it…. 🙂

Snooze Champ

Oh yeah…like everybody even I love a good snooze and I feel all these years of experience of setting up an alarm and then keep it on snooze,is in process of making me a ‘snooze champ’ LOL 😉

I have this god gifted or I have developed this skill in me????Whatever it be,but yes if there was any competition of  finding the “Snooze Champion”,I can very confidently nominate myself and I am sure I can at least reach the finals… 😀

While I draft this post here,I though why not have a poll on a very important aspect of being a ‘snooze champ’…that is how many times has one put one’s alarm on ‘snooze’,what say???? 😉 🙂 😀

Lunch with Nishant

“Meeting old friends after a long time, we see with surprise how they have changed, and must imagine, despite the mirror’s lies, that change is upon us, too.”
“The Faces of Children” by Elizabeth Spires

Yes it was almost after 3 years I was meeting Nishant aka Nishu…The meeting was planned a day in advance with his demand of having lunch at my place and not in restaurant. And on top of it,the menu of the lunch should be chicken curry :P,huh!As I am vegetarian from quite some time,I was reluctant in cooking non vegetarian food ,so somehow I convinced him for a lavish vegetarian lunch.
It was a Saturday and Nishant was reminded about the lunch when I got up. I asked him to reach latest by 2 in afternoon. I started cooking and my almost 2 hours of non stop effort in kitchen I was ready with a spread of dishes which included chana masala,paneer pasanda,paratha,boondi raita,rice and salad.
I was ready on time and called Nishant to find out where he was;and as expected Mr.Nishant was late and he sent a sms that he is on his way and will be there in my place in some time. His ‘some’ time became so much time that he who was expected to reach at 2 reached my place 3:30…Old habits die hard 😛
We were meeting after almost 3 years yesterday however the gap was in no way a reason for any sort of formalities between friends. Soon after relaxing with a lemonade we had lunch as both of us were really hungry. Lunch was accompanied with comments,appreciations,memoirs of college days.
Lunch followed with chit chat on so many things,catching up with each other’s lives and how all of us have changed in looks and behavior.
It was just wonderful and we did not realize when it was evening and Nishant had to leave then. It was good meeting up with Nishant again after such a long time!
Speaking about being glad to meet up with old friends, I feel so old now. *sigh* I’m old enough to have ‘old’ friends.

Umm… do not take me wrong…I am not promoting Tata Sky here. I just wanted to let you know that how life went “Jhinga Lala” really, when “Tata Sky Lagaya” 😛
The story begins with me cribbing about my inability to follow some of my TV programs in my new apartment because of normal cable connection not having those channels by default here in Chennai. My dearest “Leonardo Da Vincy” came up with his innovative idea of gifting me a Tata Sky connection on his planned visit on last weekend. He needs no occasion to buy gifts for me; nevertheless it was a day he forgot last here :p, so he had to do something really nice and sweet to really impress me .
However I stay in a shared accommodation, and there’s already a cable connection in place, how do we manage this, was my concern. Trust me I had anticipation of a big mess for installation of my gift and I was very much correct.
It all started with me telling my roommates about the connection as a gift, and a not that warm response from them hearing it. I am used that ‘WOW!’ from my roommates on hearing such news and here it was just so opposite .However I am still not sure if it was normal response or not.
Now, came the issue of permission from my PG uncle who was startled on hearing about this, as conveyed to me. I was not less startled on knowing this. The happiness and excitement of using my gift was being shadowed by not so positive happenings.
Anyway went to speak to uncle after getting tips and counseling session from my only philosopher 😉 and guide.I was carrying my best smile on my face and knocked uncle’s door.
I greeted uncle and we sat in his living room. However I did not start with the installation topic and asked if at all uncle was sleeping. He said, no he was just listening to news about Sashii Tharoor’s involvement in Kochi IPL.Myself at my best of awareness started having chit chat on that and other stuffs and then in between I told him, how I was just not able to see all my favorite television programs and how I was gifted this satellite TV connection and uncle should let me know what concerns he had. Uncle at his best, started advising me how these satellite TV companies are fooling consumer of their money and that it is really not worth. He advised me if I can still return the connection. He also raised a doubt of the uselessness of the box, once I leave Chennai. Now it was my turn, and I told uncle how I cannot return my purchase and first of all I will be staying in his place for sometime now and moreover I will gift this Tata Sky set to him if at all I go; as he had told in his conversation how his son would sometime ask him for it and how he would convince him of it worthlessness. Smile on my face, and the non egoistic “Gandhigiri” approach, somehow gave me the “sign off” for getting the installation done.
Then came the evening, when the technician came to do installation.PG uncle and auntie very much concerned about every corner of their accommodation and in love with its walls, paint on them, the woods had already told me to let them know when the technicians come. The cable connection from the dish antenna had to be brought inside our living room, passing the balcony.
According to technician’s plan, the cable would be neatly fixed on the wall with the help of small nails. When uncle got to know about it, he was raised an objection, as according to him this will damage the wall. The technician tried hard convincing uncle and auntie but in vain. Uncle gave him alternatives of drilling wooden plugs and then nailing a hook and uses it to support and pass cable in balcony. However the technician said, they are only given some standard utilities which is sufficient. In between uncle advised me to raise this concern with Tata Sky consumer grievances, as such constraints are not expected out of Tata’s.Somehow everyone came to a conclusion of the way to bring the cables in and then the technician started doing rest of the activities. The technician, who was by that time really irritated, said something really big, generally not expected out of a person of his level. He told me how he does not like people like my PG owner who are so fussy and who want bricks and woods to last for ever. He said, only good soul and good words last for ever! I was dumbfounded listening this from him. It took another hour to complete the installation activity and I had the “Tata Sky” remote in my hand to surf the channels and take pleasure in my gift, whose realization went through a roller coaster ride.

My Roomies :)

As this year is imminent to its closing stages, I sense there are so many things I just could not manage to do in all these days…I wanted to put across my self, but it could not happen for some raison d’être or other…

Year 2009 was a bag of sundry experiences for. I was in high spirits; I was gloomy; I had successes; I had failures; I laughed; I cried; I fought; I had fun; I made foes and yes I made friends…

The place I stayed for all these days was a home away from home in true sense. My flat mates ;with whom my acquaintances was not very old, however the level of intimacy ,empathy, support and love in the midst of all there was not dreamt off when I joined them.

It was fun filled experience all these days there, and now when most of them, including me have moved on to different places for one reason or other, I long to get back to those times.

Herein I just want to write a little about all of them…better to say the first thing about them when I think about them…

Kanu…hmm this cute girl is in true sense big thing in small package!!!!Very down to earth, sensible, caring, intelligent and emotional…I miss those cooking and long chit chat sessions with you on any damn topic. Thanks for all the support I got from you, be the same always.

Rashmi…true to her name…this damsel shines with her fairness. She is very emotional and straightforward girl who values love above anything else. I wish her all the very best in her life.

Roma…our forever “talli” friend: P….jokes apart this lady is a true support system to rely upon in adverse situations and I say that with personal experience. She has unimaginable energy and determination. Hats off to you dear. And I pray God that you get everything you wish for you in your life.

Veenu…my Rani Mukherji and “jab we met’s” Kareena Kapoor…I have to just tell her this to make her happy…A happy go lucky person who is expert in anything she does, be it cooking,makeup,coding,dancing….A great future is stored in you and you have already started getting them. Keep smiling always.

Ruchika… aka Chuggu, BAIL…ha ha…She’s my favorite teasing target. I just love doing it. I know you hate this, but baby I love it and I am sure you must be missing me for that. You are very sweet and you look like a bachcha…however your long list of…makes me wonder how’s it possible. Do invite me for your marriage, don’t you dare forget it…Love you…

Vinni… the sole proprietor of the word “nalayak”…a bundle of mischief and a very good friend. She’s bindaas and urbane in true sense.

Kimi… she gives real wrong impression of being beauty without brains. However this is not at all the case. She’s as bright in all senses as bright she looks. She is a very sweet girl with so many qualities to learn from her. My best wishes are with you for all you endeavor.

Prerna… one of my earliest friends in Bangalore…though distance apart since quite some time, she manages to keep tab of all with quite an élan. She’s a very nice person to know and soon she’s going to get something she’s been dreaming of all these days. All the best dearie…!!!!

Vidhi and Nidhi… the new kids in our place!!!!Vidhi though younger than most of us is “born grandmother”. All those familiar with her would agree to this. She’s a great cook, great manager, very religious and sweet.

And Nidhi, a child still, with so many questions with her all the time. Grow up girl and believe in yourself.

Both of you have a great future ahead. My wishes are always there for you.

I am going to miss all of you big time. I wish our paths cross some time again in future. Love you all.

Best wishes for the New Year…****Happy 2010****…May this year bring lots of happiness, love, laughter and fun…to all of you!!!!

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