365photos 2011, Life in India, Self

clever little word , isn’t it? abstract..something that makes no sense can be happily termed abstract but then who decides what makes sense anyways..
sorry..no intentions of being rambly..

I thought I have been going on and on about the move and you guys are simply fantastic leaving me wonderful and supportive comments even when I’m away.. I totally love you all! So thought I’d let you know why it is a big deal..

well those living in western countries inevitably leave their parents’ homes and move on in life but in India the number of people who do that is fairly low..girls lower still..
so when I decided to move to a foreign country for studying, about a decade ago, it had created a bit of a situation to convince my rather conservative family.. I mean girls are supposed to get married ..not go off and live alone in unknown places.. at least not in my family..

but I wanted to experience life..and freedom..and I did. It is wonderful. But about a year ago I decided it was time for a change and just like that I left a lucrative job and a cushy lifestyle in the US to return to India. That was hard work in itself..and now a year later I moved back to my home town to live with my family after about 9 and a half years ..for no particular reason other than I wanted to.

So it’s not just a change of house..it’s a change of city , a new job and move into my very first owned apartment.

Change is exciting..

no..this is not my house. it’s just an abstract shot of a pretty blue door


I take a bow

randomness, Self

The talented Deboshree has given me the versatile blogger award! 😀 It’s a chain award given out by bloggers to bloggers. I am grateful for it and had a long thank you speech ready..what with it being my first award in the blogospere and all .. but my Versace gown is at the dry cleaners’ because I spilled mango juice on it. 😀

But I am very happy and excited to pass on the love and appreciation. Thank you so much Deboshree! I am thrilled.

So the rules are :
1. Link back to the blogger who gave you this award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Pass the award along to 15 bloggers who you have recently discovered and who you think are fantastic!
4. Contact the bloggers you’ve picked and let them know about the award.


First *drumroll please* , let’s focus on me.

1. ‘Dhaami’ is my nickname from when I was 3 years old. It’s pronounced as dhaa-mi with the ‘d’ like in ‘drum’ and ‘mi’ like ‘me’. It means ‘I am dumb’ in Marathi, my mother tongue. My family thought it would be funny to teach me to call myself dumb. They are loving like that. Also this was how I looked. So maybe they were right.

2. I buy shoes when I’m depressed. Which is a lot since I get depressed by a variety of situations like seeing a homeless child to watching a tear-jerking chick flick to having to wake at 5.30 every morning for a week. This ‘ahem’ condition has created severe space issues and has brought upon many a critical eye from friends and family. I refuse to tell you how many pairs I have.

3. I love cars.
My celica was the love of my life and I was absolutely shattered when I had to sell her when I moved back to India. It still hurts 😦

4. I may be among the minority here, but I was terribly relieved when I turned 30. I hated the drama, expectations and peer pressure of the teens and twenties and am having a blast in my 30s finally being myself without worrying about judgement. Plus I have decided to remain 18 till I die.

5. I have always wanted to be a pilot and join the Indian Air Force. But the IAF didn’t accept women at the time ( or maybe my Mom tricked me again). I still hope to get a sports pilot license and fly.

6. I absolutely cannot remember birthdays. I have been disowned by many people because of that.

7. I’ve wanted to marry Shahrukh Khan since I was 8 and I first saw him in his TV serial Fauji. I knew he was married then and even had an elaborate plan to get rid of his wife and then be a shoulder for him to cry on so that he would fall in love with me. I no longer think murder is the best way to win love. But I still hope to meet him and show him what he missed out on :p

And now to passing on the award to 15 great bloggers. These are in no particular order and I am choosing them because they inspire me.

1. A-Musing by Purba Ray : this lady knows funny.

2. Infinite Revelations by Ayushi: some of her poetry leaves me breathless

3. How I write is mine.. How you read is yours by Kavita: She can rhyme any word.

4. Tomatoes, Oranges and other Fruit by Kolembo: Another poet who gives me a headache ..in the best sense. He has disappeared for a while and I hope this award will force the aliens who abducted him, to release him back to earth.

5. Joshi Daniel Photography by Joshi Daniel: this guy tells volumes of stories through his fantastic portraits

6. The Quotidian Hudson by Robert: He blogs daily photos taken along the historic Hudson river in New York. Sticking to one subject is the hardest for me and I admire him for that.

7. Artismysanity by Sunsetseasoul: This lady takes beautiful landscape shots. I especially love her sunsets on the beach ..they have a great abstract quality which I want to but cannot manage.

8. Sunny Yellow Window by Ambika: Discovered this lady recently. Loving her photos.

9. 42 by Litterateuse: She made me fall in love with English all over again

10. Livelee by Lee: love his photos. They are different in a great way.

11. Sumpix by Kieran: He has an amazing quality to his photos which I cannot name but enjoy a lot.

12. Noisy Pilgrims by a bunch of engineers: I feel a kinship there. Plus love the photos.

13. 100 strangers by Neelima: I want to do this project but cannot get over my shyness to talk to people on the street. Admire her for that.

14. The Local Tea Party : Hilarious commentary on the way Indians speak English.

15. The other side of me by Mayank: again an amazing photography blog

What? Is the jay more precious than the lark because his feathers are more beautiful?

365photos 2011, photography, Rants, Self

Why does our heart go out to beauty?
Think of a little white puppy with floppy ears and big eyes. The protective instincts flare up in all their glory. We instantly imagine ourselves to be the savior of the little one in need of love and keep him away from life’s vagaries and whims. But what if instead of a cute little puppy it is a woman. Not beautiful by standards defined by society. Maybe dark skinned. Maybe fat. Maybe with a scar on her face and graying wispy hair with no make up. Our first reaction is repulsion at the perceived ugliness. Second is of judgment.. she ‘let herself go’. And the third is indifference. The puppy maybe rabid with the capacity to kill and the woman may be the kindest person you ever met. Or she could be very rich and beneficial to you if you were to be nice to her. But a quick judgment call is made.

What irks me most is, we do agree there is beauty in the wrinkles of our mom’s hands. Or there’s beauty in an arid desert landscape. Or in a wild thunderstorm. Or a snow covered mountain. A sunny day with blue skies and fluffy clouds is beautiful. A snowy day is beautiful and a wet day in Venice is equally beautiful. Even a pug is considered adorable. Nature with her inconceivable antiquity and incredible and inhabitable extremes manages to make herself beautiful to us. In all her forms. Then why are the standards so stringent and narrow minded when it comes to human beauty and then especially physical beauty for women? Everything in nature is considered exquisite. Everything that tries to mar it is ugly. Then how come we have the exact opposite standards for ourselves. Everything that we are born with, we are hell bent on changing.

It’s not something that I talk about but something needs to be said. Only so that I can put it behind me. (Did you forget, it’s all about me! :D) Well, I had the worst classmates in engineering college. We were about 5 girls in a class of 60 with the rest of them being mean spirited, competitive guys. And I was the butt of relentless jokes. In all forms. Why? Because I was not one of the pretty girls. So I did not hold the attraction. So what to do with me? But make fun. I had a friend tell me that no guy will ever date me. And as a starry eyed 19 year old, it was quite a devastating statement coming from someone who was among my favorite people up until then. But times change, we grow up and things change. I learnt to forgive the careless remarks. What I never learnt was to forgive myself for being something less than what a woman is expected to be. And to actually realize that what he said was his opinion, not the truth. All the way up till now.

And now, I don’t care. I refuse to live by the ideals that society forces upon women. More often by women themselves. I refuse to have body image issues. I refuse to feel inferior to anyone else because I don’t fit in the cultural definition of beauty.
I get one life to live. It’s wonderful. And I refuse to let so-called social definitions to ruin it for me in any way..

PS: I have had this post in my draft box for a couple of days now. Worried whether I am sharing too much. Especially because a lot of people who I know in real life read this blog. But to hell with it. And as a disclaimer, I am not sad or depressed or dealing with self-esteem issues. I am just plain angry that I let this bother me for so long.