Blogging Challenge: Day 2

10-day

Nine Things About Me

1. I love watching sitcoms. Especially Friends. If you understand what I mean when I say “It’s a moo point”, I like you.

2. I have a very short temper. When I’m angry, turn around, and run away in the opposite direction as fast as you can. If I control my anger with you, you are special for me.

3. I hate the color mustard. Can’t stand it. Not now. Not ever.

4. I love talking to myself. Even if somebody is talking to me, I’m usually holding a conversation in my head with myself. This is because I’m the only one who can understand my craziness.

5. Food is the one thing always on my mind . When I’m hungry, I think about food. After I’ve eaten, I start thinking about the next meal I’m going to have. From 5 star hotels to road side eateries with questionable hygiene standards, I can eat from anywhere as long as it interests my taste buds.

6. Photography is as important for me as breathing.

7. For somebody who can talk all day, I have trouble expressing my feeling. It takes immense effort from my side to tell somebody how I feel. Making a joke and changing the subject is my one talent which comes in handy in such situations.

8. My only aim in life is to be happy. I don’t care what profession I follow or what job I have. I just want to be happy. And for me happiness is not money, fame or riches.  For me it’s being at peace with myself.

9.  For a major part of my life I wanted to become a truck driver. Don’t ask me why. I guess it could be because I love to travel. And at that age I was fascinated with driving a truck around the country.

 

😛

 

Blogging Challenge: Day 1

10-day

10 Things you want to say to 10 different people right now

1. I’m sorry if I hurt you. Someday you will understand why I had to do what I did.

2. Even if we don’t talk everyday or don’t meet for months, I would still be there for you when you need       me.

3. I know you care about me. But I need to think and decide about what to do about my life without                anybody’s interference.

4. The choices I made for my life were my decisions. I stand by them even if they were not exactly right          for me.

5. Life is too short to be worried about what happened in the past and what is going to happen in the             future. Let go of everything and enjoy this moment.

6. My criticism is for your benefit. Try and look beyond my harsh words.

7.  If your mind and your heart are in conflict then listen to your heart. You will never regret it.

8. Just tell me the secret to that glowing skin! I so envy you. (Just Kidding 😛 )

9. I’m so proud of you! Your patience and persistence has finally paid off.

10. I love you. So much. Forever and always.

After Party

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It’s been two days since the engagement party and I still can’t completely feel my toes. My killer heels actually killed every sensation in my feet. I didn’t really dance much because there were so many people to meet and so much to do. I just kept running all over the venue to click pictures and meet family. And yet toward the end I ended up holding the heels in one hand and walking around barefoot.

That evening had all the elements of a crazy Indian wedding function.

We had a minor accident the night before the big day (Yours truly touched a naked wire and almost got slapped by my aunt for being so foolish. All the kids were then warned to be safe).

We had a nervous, jittery bride who came almost crying from the salon because she hated her look and the way the sari was draped. Though it was nothing a few cotton balls and safety pins couldn’t correct. Some anxious blabbering a few tears did help her though. 😛

All the guests arrived and the bride’s grandmother was still not there because the car she was in took a wrong turn and ended up taking a detour of nearly 2 miles.

But together it created the drama that is required to make a party successful. I somehow feel that it’s not really an Indian wedding function if till the last moment everybody is not panicky and running here and there to get things done.

And the feeling of watching your sister getting engaged is so surreal. You look at this girl standing there glowing like a light bulb, stepping into a new life with a twinkling solitaire, and wonder how old you’ve grown. It seemed like yesterday that we were playing hide and seek in our living room.

Though for me this feeling passed pretty quickly because I could smell the murg malai tikka’s being served around. Food, I tell you, just distracts me from being serious in life.

But the best part of the evening turned out to be the photo booth me and my cousin had organized. People literally went crazy getting their pictures clicked.

And now that I’m going through these pictures, I realize that photo booths work best when people are drunk. Some expressions are just priceless. Sober people rarely ever laugh like crazy while wearing star shaped glasses and neon wigs!

The above picture is a glimpse of it. I’m the one on the extreme left BTW. I barely have 3 or 4 pictures from the entire evening. And now that I think about it, it is probably because most of the time I was just stuffing my face with food and washing it down with some random cocktail instead of posing prettily and getting some decent picture clicked of me.

Also, I’ve realized that no amount of hairspray can keep my wild hair in place. Just two hours after the party began my hair was all over the place. Though my sister keeps telling me that it was because I kept touching my hair instead of leaving the delicate hairstyle alone.

Run Up To The Party

So tomorrow is the big day. My cousin’s engagement party begins at 8 tomorrow and we are literally so psyched about it. Yes there are still tons of things left to be done, like the bride STILL has not found those perfect shoes. I mean the party is exactly 24 hours from now and she is still searching for the perfect, not so blingy, sky high pair of heels. Poor girl has been running from pillar to post in search of them and to top all that she has so much work at her office. It really is a miracle that she has not burst into hysterical tears till now.

It’s sheer excitement in our house these days. There are guests lists, bags, bangles, shoes, bottles of whiskey just kept randomly at any place. Not that I mind any of it. All this just makes one feel all the excitement that is going into planning this party.

For our parents it’s more of a ritual. The rings shall be exchanged, the gifts shall be given to the boy and the girl, and it would make everything official. So from being boyfriend and girlfriend, they shall be promoted to become each other’s fiancé and fiancée.

But for us it’s gonna be one hell of a party. The entire family is going to be there. We’ll have music, alcohol, a photo booth and some amazingly delicious food!!(To be frank I’m more excited about the food 😛 ) Add a good DJ to it and we’re all set to dance the night away.

So here’s to endless dancing and crazy picture clicking. I hope this party kick starts an amazing life for these two.

Boom Boom Bang!

It’s that time of the year again. The roads are choked with cars, people are stuffing their faces with every possible delicacy ever known in the history of Indian cuisine, houses are spotlessly clean, there are fairy lights everywhere you turn, nearly blinding you and by now you must have forgotten  the number of times you jumped out of your skin because some random kids were bursting crackers somewhere in the vicinity, freaking the bats out of you.

Welcome to the annual Indian madness everyone! It’s Diwali time!

I love the feeling I get when this festival is around the corner. Unlike Holi where the oldies shy away from having a blast, Diwali is that one time of the year when every single person shall be out on the roads to shop, meet their relatives and be a part of the biggest festival in the country.

It’s sheer madness no doubt, but so much fun!  It’s that one time of the year when you get meet your entire extended family. There’s the yummiest possible food, unlimited gifts, new clothes and the one chance to get anything you want from your parents as a Diwali gift! Well, almost anything.

And as I write all this, I’m surrounded with the gifts and sweets we’ve received so far as gifts. Just one look at them and I know all my weight loss resolutions have gone down the drain. Not that I’m complaining. : P I mean no little black dress can give me the happiness like a box of kaju katli can. Or maybe it can?!? Damn it! I should have stopped at the first box! :-/

Oh! Well it’s too late now so I’ll just go and dive headlong into a box of laddoo’s.

Happy Diwali everybody!!! 😀

 

Its Festival Time!!

Kalakand, Gulab Jamun, Milk Cake, Kaju Katli, Jalebi, Boondi laddoo’s….

Every year when the festive season kicks in, I dump all my “I need to lose weight” resolutions and start stuffing my face with all the possible sweets I can find. I’ve already attacked a box of milk cake and I’m having extreme cravings for some piping hot jalebi’s.

With the Navratari, India enters into a month long festive mode. We have nine days of navratri’s which involves insane amounts of garba, then the durga pooja, followed by dussehra, then karva chauth, and finally Diwali and Bhai Dooj.

It’s a month filled with sweets, new clothes, innumerable pooja’s, dancing, amazingly delicious food, family get together, fairy lights, earthen oil lamps, rangoli’s and gifts.

I’m so excited about all the mind blowing food I’m going to eat!

I know I’ll be about 5 kg’s heavier by the time we wrap up the celebrations, but who cares!!

Shubh Navratri everyone!!

🙂

No Regrets

Long time back, when I was in school, I was addicted to those Agatha Christie novels. I used to read them like crazy and I believe I must have read all of them.

One of my favorite of her books is “After the Funeral”; A mystery of revolving around the murder of Mr. Richard Abernethie and his sister Cora.

I don’t really remember all the character now but I remember at one point this guy asks his sister, “Don’t you have any regrets?”, and she calmly replies, “It’s a waste of time, having regrets”.

This dialogue has been stuck in my head ever since. I read numerous other novels after this one but no other dialogue ever appealed me as this one did.

Regret. Those sad disappointing feelings that sometimes feel like they are piercing your heart.

So many times in life we fail to do something which ultimately makes us regret that moment for years to come.

Logic, society, common sense, manners, fear and god knows what all has stopped us from doing what we always wanted to do.

I’m sure all of us can count the incidents in our life we regret. Things we didn’t say, and decisions we didn’t make.

I don’t know about everybody else, but I’ve had my fair share of things that I for a long time regretted. A long list of things I wanted to do and feelings I wanted to express.

There was a point in my life when my list of regrets was longer than my list of things that made me happy. And each of those regrets were like a wakeup call for me.

I remember somebody telling me, that one day your whole life would flash before your eyes. Make it worth a watch.

I didn’t want my life to be a bundle of regrets, so I decided to just let everything go and do what my heart wanted.

Over time I’ve committed massive blunders, made horrible mistakes and made a complete utter fool of myself in front of strangers.

But I also know that in spite of all this, I made some absolutely fabulous friends, found my passion in life and did what my I wanted to do rather than what everybody else expected me to do.

And today, years after I made that decision, I stand here happy and content. I’ve realized that after all these years, I really don’t give a damn if somebody thought my choices were wrong, or if somebody did not liked the way I dressed or if somebody absolutely hated the way I talked and considered me a blubbering idiot.

Everybody around you will always keep telling you what to do and what not to do. I’ve had my parents and friends and neighbors and random people I just met tell me what I should do in life.

But at the end of everything, and with all due respect to each one of them, I made choices that I felt were correct for me. Even if they were wrong I knew that these were the choices I made and hence I’m the only one responsible for anything that ever happens to me.

All that matters today is that I did what I wanted to and that deep down inside me I know that I’m very happy.

Every single regret that we have in life is because of a simple fact, that we were not able to stand up for our happiness. It takes guts to do what you want to do and when you know everybody else is against it. But somehow I’ve seen that it is easier to go against ever body and do what your heart tells you to do than to regret it years later.

Take risks in life. Either you’ll get what you wanted or you would gain an experience which would be more valuable than anything else in this world.

Fall in love with some body and tell them about your feelings. If they do love you back then spread that happiness everywhere. And if they don’t love you back then fall headlong into a tub of chocolate chip ice cream and emerge back stronger.

Love what you do. And if you can’t love it, then ditch that stupid job and do what you love.

Dress the way you like. If you like what you’re wearing then just don’t give a damn to what others think.

Try new places to eat. Who know what food heaven you might end up finding.

If you really want to buy those funky looking shoes then go running toward those neon pink pumps. They might be super duper expensive but it’s OK to be broke once in a while.

Listen to what your heart says. Do everything you like to do. It’s your life. Do what you want to do with it.

Because someday, when you are 80 and are looking back at your life, you should feel like you’ve utilized every god freaking day and have lived your life to the fullest.

At the end, when the curtain are about to fall,you should have no regrets.

The Crazy Bucket List

10 things you want to do before you die.

Well to be frank there are 395,678,342,659 things I want to do before I die. And most of them involve something extremely crazy. Going to Paris with the love of my life, scuba diving at the great barrier reef in Australia, Stuffing my face with the best of New York’s street food, going to the Oktoberfest in Germany are just some of the normal things I would do.  And I know I would do that. No matter what, these things will be marked as done on my list.

But the not so normal things I want to do are listed below. I want to do more than just these 10, but I figured I’d rather not make it official that I’m crazy but putting them out in public. 😀

Now, all these idea’s are not necessarily a fruit of my overactive imagination. I’v stolen some of them from other people.

 

1. Get into a cab and yell “Follow that car!”- We have seen this scene innumerable times in movies. And I’m hell bent on doing this someday.

 

2. Go to a stranger’s wedding and yell “Don’t marry her. I still love you” and the run away as fast as I can. I would love to stay back and look at the expression of ever person there but I’m pretty sure the wedding party would get me admitted at a mental hospital.

 

3. Walk up to a stranger, hand him a briefcase and whisper “You know what to do.” I would get some friend of mine to sit somewhere close by and record the reaction of that person.

 

4. Text “I hid the body” to a random number.

 

5. Go to Sydney and ask random people to help me locate ’42, Wallaby Way, Sydney‘. This address has been stuck in my head ever since I saw ‘Finding Nemo’.

 

6. Every time somebody asks me to do something, ask them if they need fries with that.- I have no idea why I want to do this but I’m sure a couple of times would be enough to drive everybody around me crazy.

 

7. Buy a parrot and teach him to say “Help! I’v been turned into a parrot!”. Oh! the joy of looking at people’s reactions.

 

8. Step into a crowded elevator and say with a perfectly straight face, “I’m sure you all are wondering why I’v gathered you all here today.” And when people start giving me weird expressions, act as if I’m shocked out of my wits and run out screaming.

 

9. Run to a stranger and look at them in horror. Then tell them with great urgency, “They found out about you. You need to leave the country as soon as possible.”

 

10. When I get a sales call, politely answer the phone and  In the middle of the conversation start asking them repeatedly if they believe in ghosts.

An Ode To My Glasses

I can’t thank you enough

For all you’ve done for me,

It’s only because of you

That clearly I can see,

A decade has passed,

With you on my nose

And without you my life

Is full of misery and woes,

I’ve bumped into things,

When you weren’t there,

You came into my life

With tender love and care

I’ve broken you numerous times

And forgotten you in the bus

But you always came back to me,

Without any drama or fuss

But today as we part ways,

This feeling is bitter sweet

You have always been my best friend

Be it winter rain or heat,

This is our last day together,

Tomorrow we part ways,

But you will always bring me a smile,

When I think back of our happy days

Adieu my dear glasses,

I bid farewell to thee

I shall forever love you

For you always helped me see

The Bride’s Side- Part 2

Back to blogging after like a month of being inactive. And the excuse this time is that I had so much editing to do, that I just ran away from anything that required me to open my laptop. Believe me, I hate anything related to weddings right now because I’v only been thinking about them this past one month.

First it was the preparation that went into all the planning for covering weddings, then came the weddings themselves and finally the mammoth task of editing thousands of pictures and shortlisting which are worthy enough to be given to the client. Phew! Whoever said weddings are supposed to fun and frolic, was never a wedding photographer.

Anyways, I’l crib later. First let me take you guys through the wedding day of an Indian Bride. Actually the wedding day of the last bride I met.

I Reached the venue at 7 in the morning on her wedding day and she was sitting there all ready and waiting for the rituals to begin. I can understand her not being able to sleep because of all the excitement but the poor girl went to bed at 2 in the morning after dancing for hours and here she was all ready and smiling.

Her’s was a Sikh wedding which take place in the morning. Usually north Indian weddings take place in the evening so the brides have a comparatively comfortable day and the madness begin at night. But here, the bride was supposed to be up and ready early morning and get done with all the rituals so that she could reach the parlor and meet her beautician at 9.

So when all the relatives were ready, the first ritual of the day began. The Chooda/Choora Ceremony.This is basically a Punjabi cultural ceremony where the Bride’s maternal uncles slip red and ivory bangles on her wrists which she would wear for the next 40 days. Bangles have a huge importance in the Hindu culture and married ladies are supposed to wear bangles all the time. The Chooda/Choora symbolizes that her wrists would never be empty from now on. In earlier days, the bride was supposed to wear her chooda for at least a year and the bride was refrained from doing any heavy household jobs. After the first anniversary, a small homely ceremony was held where the In-Law’s would remove her Chooda and Glass or gold bangles were placed on her wrists. The Chooda was then taken to a river and a small prayer was held after the which the Chooda was left to float in the river. My maternal grandmother’s Chooda was made of pure ivory and I remember her telling me that her chooda was floated in the river ‘Ganga“.

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Also, After the Chooda ceremony, the family of the bride hangs ‘Kalire‘ on her Bangles. The kalirey traditionally were made of a thin metal usually golden or silver in color, and coconuts. The metal symbolizes wealth and prosperity for the bride and groom and the coconuts symbolized that the bride never runs out of food in her new home.

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After this ceremony, The bride picked up her dress and jewelry and headed to the parlor to get ready and actually become a Bride.

I don’t know how the brides deal with it, but getting ready for the wedding ceremony according to me is probably the most agonizing part of the entire wedding. I mean I just sit in a corner and keep clicking pictures, but the poor bride has to sit on that chair for like 2 hours and get her make up and hair done and then get her lehenga draped. I shudder at the thought of going through this on  my own wedding. Though I’v seen brides who really enjoy the ‘getting ready’ part, I find it a torture. Sure I want to look my best on my wedding, but to sit and get your makeup done for like 2 hours is scary! Oh well! God help me and the beautician on my wedding day. I’l probably have to pay her double of what she charges to handle my tantrums as well. 😛

Anand Karaj

 

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So, now when the bride is ready and is all anxious for the baraat (The Groom and his relatives) to come, her sister’s and friends all come to her. Sister’s play a huge role in the wedding for a bride. They help the bride get ready, chose the best Bindi, give secret signals on whether the make up is going good or not, and are basically turn into a superwoman of sorts who can handle everything from getting extra hairpins to keeping the bride calm in such times when the bride is ready to explode with nervousness.

The bride sits in this small powder room reserved for her at the venue, waiting patiently for her knight on a white horse to come as everybody around her goes into a tizzy the moment they come to know that the baraat is about to reach.

And that is when the actual wedding begins…

 

Pictures By Clickaholicks