Month: April 2012

Europe – I Love You

Not cause I dreamt of romancing in the Alps when I saw all those Yash Raj flicks – that was never going to be my cup of tea. Heroines in chiffon sarees and halter neck blouses in temperatures of 10 degrees and below – who were they kidding? (But I have friends who still have those fantasies in this day and age – sigh!)

But I did see how gorgeous  you looked wrapped in green, white and blue. Rains , sunshine, rainbows, snow, rivers, lakes – you gave credence to my belief that God has his favourites. You certainly seemed to be his.

Mom loves you too. She always wanted to visit you; and she did before me, guilty as much as she felt going without me – my studies never granted me that long a vacation. Didi moving to London was a blessing. Mum first met you in 2003 and has now been there thrice. She raved about her first London-Paris trip so much that I knew I had to see you soon.

I finally did in 2007 and what an eventful start to that trip I had. One of my best holidays – Scotland – my school’s home country, the Highlands and the Lochness , the Edinburgh Castle, the Whisky Tour, the streets I’ll never forget. And London – you remind me of my Mumbai, especially South Mumbai where I grew up. When I stepped in first, I knew it was the beginning of many more trips to see you,I promised myself I’d come more often – you  are so worth the visit everytime.

Then 3 years later in 2010  MDH and I took our first self-planned trip. Hotel hunting, train planning, sight-seeing all on our own – no tour nonsense – just the both of us – 7 cities, 3 countries, 14 days, the bliss and beauty of seeing Europe by train. I know I’ve been lazy and did not pen down my Austria and Prague Chronicles, I must someday.

Salzburg – I fell in love with this city. I can stay there for my entire life. I still can’t pinpoint the exact things I loved about place – but the warmth, the simplicity, the shopping, the Mozart influence, the gothic arts, the small hill in the middle of the city, the memories of Sound of Music, the smiling faces, the ice-creams – oh the best ice-creams I’ve ever had!  I’ll come back someday again! Austria you are the hidden true beauty – more than your popular cousin Switzerland. I hope people discover you more.

The people – they told me you all might be rude; but you were just the opposite. Freindly, warm, welcoming, smiling, guiding, playing the perfect hosts. Our hosts at Interlaken – I’ll never forget you – for making me that fresh bread in the morning at 5.00 cause we had to take the first train at 5:45 out of Interlaken to Berne – Zurich – Salzburg, a long 7-hour journey. The smell of that bread is still fresh in the mind.

The greenery, the rains, the chilly weather, the winds hitting your face, not realizing we had walked miles and the legs that would never ache. The old town, the town centre, the small streets, the winding roads, the lake, the cruise, the artists playing down the bridge, the castles, the history, the gothic architecture, the old century charm – you still have it, even in your main towns.

All my life I’ve lived in busy cities among  cement cells, surrounded by skyscarpers, lacking greenery, lacking nature – people rushing, people running, no time for themselves, no time to stop and gaze and marvel at nature. You in the little time spent with you taught me to stop, wait, gaze, marvel, breathe and enjoy the true beauty around us.

Last year in July I made the trip to fulfill one of the items on  my bucket list. What an experience that was and then made a trip to visit a dear friend in Ireland. Kinvara village in Ireland, about 40 minutes from Galway city. The lovely time spent with family and friends. Lazying around, barbecue, getting wet in the rains,  lying on the greeen lawn , no hurry, no rush, no office, no work, no internet, no gadgets –  sipping  the rain water that fell on my face, soaking in the morning sunshine, listening to the river run past the house – the simple pleasures of life.

6 countries so far, not much covered but hopefully will do more. Europe – you are an addiction now, you have your oddities but I must see you once a year. So we are heading back tomorrow,  this time to some more new places – Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Paris, Brussels – will soak in some more of your beauty. All you need  to do is be wonderful as you have always been to me.


How long have you been married?

Why have you retained your maiden name after marriage?

Do you have kids yet?

Why don’t you have kids?

You get to enjoy so much only cause you don’t have kids

Mint money now – good plan, you won’t work after having a kid will you?


I just have one question to these idiots who do not understand the meaning of “intruding my personal space” – at what point of your supposedly mature adult life are you going to learn to Shut The F%&k Up!


Has taken over my iPod since the last 2 days! Amit Trivedi as I have said time and again on this blog, is a freaking genius. I did not find a single song in the entire album to find fault with.

Aafaton Ke Parindey  is in sync with Trivedi’s earlier compositions Dilli & Aali Re genre from No One Killed Jessica – fast paced and some hard hitting rock.

Pareshaan by Shalmali will soon be topping the music charts – it is soulful and exhilarating. The chorus after a soft pause and Shalmali’s voice variations during the chorus leave you completely mesmerised

Chokra Jawaan should be a hit among the masses – Sunidhi totally owns the song. Ofcourse the chemistry with Vishal Dadlani is obvious – they seem to have had a ball singing this song.

I always thought Shreya Ghosal did an average job with her Chikni Chameli song and was probably not comfortable doing rustic numbers. She wipes off that performance with a stunner in Jhalla Wallah. The diction, the accent and the sensuous touch – I can’t wait to see the video. A song that fits in with the cult “Kajre Re” number. Listen to the song – the lyrics are hilarious – kudos to Kausar Munir

Amit Trivedi makes excellent use of the harmonium, tabla, dholki, dafli – the simplest musical instruments to keep the rustic tone in most songs – the brilliant use of chorus especially in Pareshaan and  Jhalla Wallah takes the songs to a different level.

But my favourite song of the album, and in my opinion will probably go on to become one of the cult songs of our generation is the enchanting title track. It starts off with a trumpet, then Javed Ali starts off softly , the tempo rises and comes down again and rises again and this goes on for 3.5 minutes and just when you are getting out of the trance, in comes Shreya for the last minute – striking a low pitch so melodious like only she could and in that one minute transcends all levels of the brilliance we know she is capable of. She with her low pitch and Javed Ali in his high pitch singing Ishaqzaade; I could just replay that last minute in an endless loop for the next few days and never get out of that magical trance.

If you haven’t already tuned into Ishaqzaade and the magic that Amit Trivedi has spun – I suggest you waste no more time and get listening to it right away.

Switched Off…

from Facebook.

I went off it during my two week illness. Came back for a few days and then deactivated the account again.

I had really enjoyed Facebook until I realised it was getting too intrusive and it was making me claustrophobic. It was eating into my reading and writing space. Not that I’m a regular blogger but I try to be. Work is exhausting as always and between cutting down my online time – I started off by going off Facebook. Twitter time increases only when a cricket match is on – so that is  under control.  

This may be a phase and I may get back – but as of now I’m not missing not being on it. This is not to say I detest it or hate it – I still feel it has its positives and it helped me connect with a lot of folks and it felt good.

Facebook also gives you this lovely illusion from the many comments and likes you get on your photographs and statuses that you are very important and folks on your long “friends list” will miss you. Let me spoil it for you – it’s all humbug –if you didn’t already know that. Get yourselves deactivated from Facebook and see how many write in to check if you are alive;  only a handful will and you know who you need to be in touch with.

If you want to reach out to me – drop me an email or leave a comment on the blog and I’ll definitely get back. I’m pretty good at being in touch – always have been. My best friends and close relatives are severely disconnected online when so many modes of connection are available today; and they know it or rather take it for granted that I will be in touch no matter what – and they are right!

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