Monday, January 24, 2011

To India

Come Friday and we are off to India. Our first trip home since we moved to Singapore last year and the occasion is as joyous as it can get. Its Aman’s brothers wedding. Which means there will be much family time, finger licking food, clothes, jewelry, dancing, singing and the works!

Yes, yet another Big fat Punjabi wedding. And since I am the one and only Bhabhi (sister-in-law) there is much to look forward to. I have always been a great fan of Indian traditions and I know that there are times when we will go overboard with stuff. And maybe in retrospect we will think if there was a point in all the extravagance. But as of now, I just want to go with the flow of the celebrations.

So shopping for gifts has been done for some selective set of relatives. Buying gifts for all wasn’t an option. It would have emptied our pockets and we would have ended up paying for extra baggage too. So we decided to act sane and buy gifts for some of the folks. The remaining shall be gifted on our next trip.

As for my shopping for the wedding, it’s non-existent. I obviously cannot buy Indian clothes from here. So all my shopping which is like a lot will happen in India. I have less than 24hrs in Delhi to pick up as much as I can. It would be an understatement to say I am nervous. From my past experiences it takes but a week or so of dedicated effort to get the entire ensemble ready. And here I have just a couple of days, so tell me how on earth I do it. I need nothing less than a miracle to help me sail through. And no this is no drama, and I am so hoping that the ladies out there will understand! Send some prayers my way will you??

But keeping this earth shattering problem aside, I am super duper excited. I am so looking forward to welcome a new member to Malhotra household. And obviously there are very few things in the world like a Punjabi wedding you see. And you got to attend one to know what I mean. And I get to meet my parents too who will be very much part of the wedding so that’s the added bonus. All in all, looking forward to some major fun, provided I get my clothes ready, else there will be one grumpy, irritated me and that’s no good person to deal with! 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Of Festivals and Families

Nostalgia is at an all time high. Its Lohri today and here I am, stuck at work with no plans whatsoever to celebrate the festival. And being in Singapore doesn’t help my cause you see.

Childhood memories come flooding back as I am trying to get some work done. The mind is refusing to concentrate. I feel myself transported to the cold winter evenings of Ranchi. Lohri each year was celebrated with as much gusto and enthusiasm. The entire family would come together to dance and sing around the bonfire. There was yummy traditional food. And sweets. Revari and Popcorns which were then generously thrown in the fire.   A feeling of happiness and festivity all around. Lots of laughter and some gossips. Traditional songs, dance and the some money imparted by elders to the ones younger to them. So not only did we have fun but we also came out richer.

Lohri for me was an occasion, like many others, when my entire family would be together. This was in fact the best part of my growing up years. The fondness my entire family had for celebrations and festivals. Right from childhood we saw all festivals being celebrated together and with a lot of heart and soul being put in it. Not just festivals but each and every occasion, like birthdays, anniversaries, New Year and even children’s day meant that the whole gang would be together, eating and having fun! And it helped that we were a lot of us in the same town. We were what can easily symbolize "the nice big fat Indian family."

And now living so far away from home, I can’t even begin to express how much I miss it. Thankfully I have the memories.

You can go here and read more about this festival -
Leaving you with the lyrics of this traditional Lohri song – Sunder munderiye hoye, tera kaun vichara hoye,dulla bhatti wala hoye,dulle di dhi wihaai hoye,sher shakar paare hoye!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Here is my take on “No One Killed Jessica”

Let’s separate the two. The tragedy and the film.
The incident is something that I had followed very closely.  And like half of India I too felt cheated when the accused were let off. I too felt the rage and anger. And I too wanted the criminals to be punished. So seeing it all live on screen brought back all these emotions again. I was watching it more like a documentary or a series of how the events took place.  And yes I did end up with tears in my eyes.

Now coming to the movie – I thought it was a very mediocre affair. Vidya was good, Rani was over the top. Some characters were very good, like the cop. The movie could have been better.  And this is why I say this – Just assume that this movie wasn’t made on a real life incident. Just assume if this same movie was totally fictitious? What if there was no Jessica Lal ever killed. In that case this movie would have fallen flat.

The movie brings forward the obvious. The helplessness of the common man. The power of position and money and its misuse that’s rampant. The movie reminds one of the fact that what a barbaric society this is.   
The idea behind the movie was to portray what had happened in reality and there I think it has done a decent job. It does try and make things larger than life at some places, but then it’s a movie at the end of the day. Go watch it once.

On a separate note, I am quite happy that Shweta won Big Boss. Among all and sundry present there, she was the most decent one. She is quite gritty in her own ways. Independent, single mom, someone who said no to abuse and chucked that joker of a husband out of her life.  Think about it, it was that loud mouth Dolly who played such a crucial role in Shweta’s victory though. The whole bit about Shweta being abused and victimized by Dolly had the nation voting for her. Something similar to what happened with Shilpa Shetty. 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

For this had to be written

A decade has ended and another has begun. The decade that saw me leaving my teenage behind and entering my twenties, a decade where I transitioned from a student into a professional. I finished education, got a degree, started working and became financially independent. I lived in 4 cities through this time. It was during this decade that I met A, we became best friends and god knows when fell in love and then got married as well. A decade where a young girl left her hometown in pursuit of bigger things in life. To find her true self. And I think I have done pretty well on that.

This decade could easily be classified as the growth decade. A decade of personal, professional, financial and emotional growth. Of happiness and fun I never imagined existed. And of grief and feelings I wasn’t aware of. All in all, a very fulfilling time. The beautiful twenties of my life. Of Love, pleasure, travelling, living to the fullest. Of losing some friends and making some more. And of realizing which of these will stay forever.

It is never possible to say with certainty of how the time to come by will mould itself. But something that I can foresee is that this new decade will be the decade of nurturing the growth that took place previously. A solid foundation to life has been laid and ground work has been done. It’s time to set the blocks soaring.

I wish all of you a very happy new year. I wish for all of your wishes to be fulfilled and your hearts to be filled with contentment and joy. Be healthy, spend time with family, laugh out loud, spend money, travel, read. Be Good!!