Dec 28, 2016

2016, in Books

So here it goes, my year, 2016, in books...
Few of the best books I read this year, in no particular order.

1. A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara - This one is fresh on my mind, being the most recent read one. Whatever I felt for this book is all documented here, but here is a bit more - I needed to watch mind-numbing TV (Thank you, How to get away with Murder and Suits!) for four full days to get over the effect this book had on me. I loved it so much, the plot and the literature, but its more than that... this is a heavy book, which I recommend taking up only if you are not feeling down or depressed. I also did not expect to enjoy a book built solely around male characters, none of which are strong in the Rand-esque way or Mc-Dreamy men that I generally tend to like in books. And thats why I am a fan of the writer now.

2. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah - Set in WW II era, this book is a beauty. I am a fan of Hannah's prose, and this book is something I recommend if you are looking to read stories based on strong female leads.

3. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline - I recommend this book if you are a science nerd/geek, or have loved playing video games when you were younger. Full of 90's pop culture references, this book made me feel like I was on a treasure hunt myself.

4. Ghachar Chochar by Vivek Shanbhag - This book touched my heart and stayed there for reasons I am still not able to articulate. It could be the simple prose or the very true translation from the original or the story itself... this one is a beauty if you are looking for an easy read over a short time.

Sep 23, 2016

This, right here...


They say, Fall has just started, two days ago. That it was the Autumn Equinox then. And that the colors will be beautiful for the next few days

The air is all chilly, making me wear a pullover as I sit on my dining table, working away, and wondering what I'll do with the rest of my day.


These are some of my favorite things these days...

Am in a different mood these days. Its much different than what I felt a few months ago. I feel a strange sense of peace as I sit around the house. The couches make me feel like a romantic, the fireplace promises me immense possibilities, the fluff throws I bought from Costco make me feel warm around the house, the full bar (with our basics Whiskey, Wine and Bourbon) makes me feel that am ready for winter, and above all, all my books surrounding me as I sit anywhere in the living area make me feel safe. I think this is the strange peace I am talking about.


Feb 12, 2016

Happiness is...

When you are young, and are looking for a partner to share your life with, you think of that person to be the one you'll grow old with. No? At least, I did.

I was consciously looking out for the person with whom I could grow old. The one with whom I could talk about anything under the world, share minute details about how I have umpteen crushes in a day or detail every single feeling I felt when I was waiting for the signal to turn green or the one who knows how spiteful I can be if I want to. The one with whom I would not need to speak to without actually talking. The one around whom am not worried if am farting and can in fact, take pride in talking about our crap routines.
The one who would be your family, your steady date, your everything.

You know what am talking about now, don't you? The one person who will be your partner in everything. Call this person a soulmate, if you will. But I've grown to realize that unless you are friends first, you cannot be great partners. So, I was basically looking out for a person who could be a great friend to me.

Well, that's about a life partner. As important and as awesome this person is, just this one person wouldn't do in this vast and long a life, no?



[Picture Courtesy - http://www.cutehappyquotes.com/happiness-is-a-friend-to-hug/]

Jan 29, 2016

Houses, Homes and Life phases - 2

[Continued from Part 1]

Yes, I felt like this till I saw the house of our dreams. (There were quite a few of 'my dream house' over the years we spent real-estate window shopping, which was soon becoming into a bad hobby we had to get rid of, but this place was from both our dreams. Till then, the husband and I hadn't agreed upon a single house/apartment. We both never liked the same stuff). This house was perfect - it was a cozy little place with 3 bedrooms, a balcony that overlooked greenery and nothingness, a kitchen large enough to actually have a small kitchen table for the husband to sit on and eat the Dosas I so enjoyed making, rooms big enough to enable us to have separate work areas... you know, everything a newly married couple looked for, in a house and it was our own. (except that we weren't newly married anymore by then, though life hadnt really changed in that department, but more on that later). We suddenly accumulated a lot more stuff than we imagined we'd have - gadget-wise, and furniture-wise. In hindsight, I don't think I was ready for it, neither was he. It was way too much for people like us, part-nomads.



Jan 28, 2016

Houses, Homes and Life phases - 1

I tend to do this, associate the phases of life with where I stayed then. That also helps me remember where I met a specific person in my life, and how the phase I was in has impacted my friendship with that person. It also helps me remember how I was doing career-wise back then.

As a 19 year old when I came to Hyderabad the first time and saw the city, I knew this was going to be home. It was love at first sight - the broad beautiful roads, the still-upcoming flyovers, the language spoken in the city, and not to forget, the beautiful view of Charminar I had at 5 AM in the morning among floodlights. I knew I was going to move here and this was where home would be. I didn't bother to think about marriage, career, education or anything at all. Hyderabad was home, that's all.

Jan 21, 2016

Of stereo-typing, labeling and roots...

Roots... this is something that has always had my interest. No, not the kind that trees/plants have. Or the kind that grow out of your head and show your age. The kind which makes you feel like you belong to something - a place, a human being, a time period , a culture group or anything at all.

Of all these categories, I feel I've had the most trouble being at peace with 'the place'. The question - "Where are you from?" always catches me off guard. Anywhere abroad, I can get away with "Am from India" and most people wouldn't ask me another question. But anything more granular than this, and I stumble... I have trouble telling where I am from.

[Image Courtesy - Google Maps]


Jan 7, 2016

You were here...

As I was making my bed a while ago, wondering whether the blankie was worth it at all, couldn't help but think of the comment a friend made about the short Hyderabad winters.

A pencil and paper and this is my heart's anguish pouring out. ☺

You were here and
Then you were not.

Raising hopes and dreams
Of together evenings and nights,
Cosy, wrapped up like a breeze
A cup of chocolate and the knight!

You were here and
Then you were not!

Gorgeous sunsets, long evenings, shorter days
Barbeques, bakes, soups and may be, a truffle,
With friends, whiskey and laughter a gay
All of it, gone in a trifle!

You were here and
Then you were not!!

Oh, you wretched winter
Lasting only 48 hours,
Not a minute yonder
Making me love my city lesser by the hour!!!