Tag Archives: Celebrations

Holi- A Festival Lost in Colours

I was asked by few of my colleagues to write and recite a poem on the occasion of Holi. I am sharing with you the poem I wrote. I did realize that a lot of people didn’t understand Hindi in my office and also did an english poem translation. The translation is added below the original poetry.

Holi Hindi Poem

My friend when you put the colours of the Holi on my face, I relived the times of my childhood

The sense of being carefree, the essence of friendship were all conveyed only as those colours could.

Those colors narrated stories of growing up around my home and those quaint by-lanes,

The sweetness of those little gujhiyas made by my mom in that gulal refuses to faint .

In this era where the country is struggling with the Saffron and Green.

The memories of Holi schooled me on the importance of the Red, Yellow, Orange and Cream.

My friend when you put the colours of the Holi on my face, I relived the times of my childhood

The sense of being carefree, the essence of friendship were all conveyed only as those colours could.

 

Today on this festival of Holi I find myself in a fix and bind,

No colours around, only the Instagram filters I find.

The fun and the quest of long lasting colors which were almost contraband,

Lasting twenty four hours Holi on such Snapchat messages is what I fail to understand.

The evil in Holika which got charred, the divine in Prahlad did survive,

Such deep sentiments from “Sefie with Holi Fire” on social media I fail to derive.

The holy pyre which is meant to burn away all the animosity, evil, jealousy and greed,

I fail to understand that with five thousand friends on facebook, but no one to speak to indeed.

I don’t know if this is the trance of the Holi, or the slight winds of Phalgun in the woods,

But my friend when you put the colours of the Holi on my face, I relived the times of my childhood.

 

Report Card 2013

I am glad that 2013 is ending, while this has been quite an interesting year but somehow it has been tangential to what I thought I was heading towards. There things which I probably did well and some things which I didn’t. Before I put up what I intend to do in 2014 there are quite a few things which I graciously screwed up in 2013. So it is the time to publish the final report card and own up some of the things which I didn’t do effectively in 2013 and some things where I have managed to scrape through. So here goes a laundry list-

  1. Working Out– 2013 has been an exceptionally worse year as far as working out was concerned. Previously I used to manage 3-4 months of some form of workout, exercise or sports as bare minimum. This year the figure wouldn’t have touched even 30 days in 2013, I managed to gain back the weight I had lost last year and I would be posting a really shameful record for Biglsr which I am participating in. This has been one of the worst year as far as investing time on my physique and general well being goes.
  2. Maintaining Personal Relations– I have been really stingy on managing the personal front. There have been multiple times when I have not returned calls from people who mean a lot to me. I missed the wedding of one of the closest friend/brother I have and I cannot even say how sorry I feel about it.
  3. Wasting Energy & Time on Sinks– I have always managed to balance my time between productive work, effective personal time and indulged in time sinks, things that just consumed time to waste. This year the balance has really gone for a toss with hell lot of time being spent on the time sinks, majority of them being Facebook (I am bordering addiction and have serious risk of withdrawal symptoms if I quit), Candy Crush (I can, actually I will write an entire blogpost about how pathetic is this game) and Online Deals (Countless hours of tracking deals online for the products which I was never going to buy in the first place).
  4. Lack of Reading– Over the years I have generally averaged reading 60-80 books in a year. This year the number has been embarrassingly low at 32 books which I believe is a result of all the time waste I have mentioned already. Hopefully this number will improve in 2014.

 

Now to talk of things which I feel I have done well this year-

  1. Professional Learning– 2013 was a year of great professional learning and experiences. The year taught me how to take risks and decisions under extreme pressure and hostile circumstances. Hope that this streak will continue and my decisions will pay off in 2014
  2. Taking Time off– This year I did manage to take time off from work where I managed to take a few vacations; visited some nice places like Munnar, Mt Abu and Udaipur. And as I write this on the last day of the New Year I am in Hampi for the celebrations. 2013 has been a successful year as far as travelling and vacations are concerned.

So this is my report card of 2013. How did the 2013 went for you?

 

Thanksgiving, I am Thankful for II

Today is Thanksgiving, and I have earlier blogged about how I find the festival interesting and relevant. No and it has nothing to do with Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales on gadgets and friends and relatives coming back from US in December holidays.

The associated tradition with the festival where you have turkey for the meal, I won’t be able to do that due to my vegetarian self. Probably to compensate for the turkey bit I will have some Turkish coffee, which I am sure will more than make up for it. Coming back to being thankful, here is the list for which I have been thankful for a year-

1- Some of the recent changes at the work place and my profile have made it a lot more enjoyable and fun for me. I am thankful for the place I am at my work today which makes me want to go to the office every morning weekday. I hope this positivity continues for the years to come. I am thankful for these changes which made me a better professional.

2- I am thankful for this blog and the friends I have made through the blog, even after a huge gap and complacence on my part there were comments, emails from people on posting of my blog wishing me and my writing well. It feels so blessed to have interacted with such a caring and positive bunch of people in this vast world of internet. If you are reading this, I am thankful for the time and faith you have put in me.

3- I am thankful for the greatest people who thought I was good enough to be friends with them. People who have stood by me through thick and thin, who have supported me, enjoyed with me and are an inseparable part of my life. It is rare to be blessed with such love from people and I am extremely grateful for that.

4- I am thankful for the greatest family in the world. The ‘bestest’ of parents who didn’t disown the son who could put biggest sitcom bloopers to shame. A loving wife who despite the 4 years have managed to live by my side without killing me. An extended family which I can blindly depend upon to take care of things lest something happens to me. I am thankful to be share my life with the most wonderful people.

5- I am thankful for the life I am living, a comfortable and cozy life without having to worry about a lot of basic needs and some luxuries which at most time I take for granted. There is quote by E.E. Cummuings, “The hardest challenge is to be yourself in a world where everyone is trying to make you be somebody else.”; I am thankful for a life where I have the liberty to be myself.

Image Source: Google Images

And with this I will be signing off wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. Do share how was Thanksgiving for you?

Happier today: 10 Things You Should Stop Doing Right Now

First of all I must put the disclaimer message that this post is not an original creation. It was a forwarded message by a dear friend D, I do not have details of its origin to give appropriate credits. I have been thinking to start writing on this space regularly soon and somehow it doesn’t happen. I have been planning on the post and the idea behind the post was there somewhere inside my subconscious, and when I happened to read this mail I was like this is exactly what I had in my mind. The mail was perfect in reflecting the thoughts of my subconscious mind. So without wasting further time and reinventing the wheel I will share something which I have been feeling a lot lately.

Happiness (Image: Google Images)

1.Wait for a better time. There is never a good time to do anything especially if that’s something you have been putting off for a while. There is never a good time to start exercising or learning a new language… You make the time for these things if they are important to you – make them important enough for the good time to be now.

2.Hate people. It’s such a negative emotion and it really doesn’t lead anywhere. In most cases, hating someone directly affects you and you alone, making your mood and your day that much worse. By talking behind someone’s back and spreading negative energy you’ll just push people you actually care about away. Let go of it and make room for good and positive things.

3.Constantly look back. What has happened in the past is now in the past – you have learned, hopefully, from your mistakes and it’s time to move on. Until you can let go of the past you cannot live in the present, plan for the future and grow as a person. After all, your life from before doesn’t define who you are today, your present actions do.

4.Think about people who make no difference in your life. Whether they are people from your past or your present if they don’t affect you directly why waste your precious time on them? This also applies to spreading and listening to rumors, reading celebrity columns and checking people’s statuses online. You only have one lifetime why should you give people you don’t really care about any of it?

5.Whine about life, the Universe and everything. Yes, there are days that it’s just impossible to smile and take things as they come but what does whining achieve, exactly? What is the point of complaining about the weather, politics or prices – what would that change? Unless you have a clear plan on what to do and how to make things better why spread the misery and the negative vibes? If you see a problem – do something, do anything! The light doesn’t work in your block of flats – fix it or find someone who will. Things that are not under your control and you cannot in any way influence them – learn to live with them and accept them as they are.

6.Play social games. No one really cares about your clothes or your level of intelligence, not really. It’s way better to just be authentic and show people who you really are, with all your flaws and true character rather than waste energy on superficial interactions – they don’t lead to anything but superficial relationships. Be yourself and be real, let others love you and accept you the way you are. Genuine relationships will make you happier, and you’ll only form these relationships once you stop trying to impress everyone you meet and start being yourself.

7.Spend money on things you don’t need. We often mistake the “I want” for “I need” when buying stuff just because it seems cool to own it. Things don’t make you happy for very long – the moment you get it you experience joy but shortly after that joy is gone and the newly acquired item joins the rest in your house. Think very carefully whether you absolutely in need of something or you just want to own it.  Invest in experiences instead – experiences that will stay with you in your memory for the rest of your life.

8.Compare yourself to others. Very often we look around and we see people who are doing a lot better than we are and we don’t really notice those who are doing a lot worse. At times we look around and all we can see is everyone else having it easier and having it better and we feel bad about our own life. The fact is, it’s not easy for anyone and everyone has their own problems. What you see on the outside is what others let you see, always. Someone else is looking at you and thinking just about the same thing: “you are the lucky one” and they have their own reasons to say that. By thinking that having someone else’s life or someone else’s problems will make you happier than you make yourself in the now you rob yourself of the chance to take joy in what you have for yourself already. We can be happy with very little and immensely unhappy with having it all – sometimes, it’s just a matter of perspective.

9.Take no chances. Sometimes we wait for a sure thing to come along for us to follow and then, when it never comes, we wonder why nothing wonderful and exciting ever happens to us. It’s true not just in regard of opportunities but also people. Sometimes people also need to be given a chance to prove you wrong. We often overthink, overanalyze and create possible scenarios in our head – then come up with the most negative outcome, and end up never trying anything at the end of the day. If you are truly afraid of something going wrong, ask yourself: “What is the worst thing that can happen?” and if you can live with that worst case scenario – maybe you should give it a try.

10.Set no goals. If we set no goals how do we expect to get anywhere at all? Life has the tendency to decide for us and take us down routes we never thought we would ever consider for ourselves – don’t let it dictate it all, reclaim some of the control back and influence your future. If you have a plan, a good or a bad one, at least you have one and you can guide yourself to a better tomorrow, want a better tomorrow at any rate. We often give up and just let events take over, but reacting all the time is not the same as acting of your own free will. Take control back, set targets and get a strategy for life because just living the same Groundhog day over and over again just isn’t living. Life only has a meaning when you give it one.

 

So with this post I am back and hopefully if you are still reading this space you will get to hear more of my rants. Till then Adios and Disfrute de la vida.

Suicide at High Noon

As last time this too is from a team building comptetion we had at our offsite. The rules of the game were that one had to write a suicide note which should include the following-

  • Not more than 80 words
  • It should have one Name
  • It should have two places
  • It should have threee animal (Air, Land and Water)
  • It should have four things

So this what I wrote and it was appreciated generally by the audience and also got the prize-

Hi Helena,

When you saw me naked holding our dog by the rear and I said “Oh Fish”, it wasn’t because I was doing the dog, it would be cuckoo. I wasn’t doing our fish either. I was ironing my trunks for my trip to Los Angeles when the dog pulled it down and the iron fell from the board on my “thing” and I ran to fetch some Ice from the kitchen when you saw me.

But that is not the reason why I am commiting sucide; I am treading this path out of embarrasement. During my interview with the firm from Argentina when they asked me for my testimonials; I probably showed them the wrong thing.

Embarrasingly yours,

Spartan

Ps. This post might be greater than 80 words because I am trying to recreate it from memory. During the contest I had great help in editing by a dear collegaue Aishwarya who ensured this was compressed within a limit of 80 words.

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The Warriors of the Purple Hue

We had our management consulting offsite last weekend, where practically close to 200 people were stuffed in a resort, trust me for once we all felt like Karnataka MLAs as venue being the same as it was for Yeddy’s men. Coming back to the event which was a lot of fun, we all were divided into teams with a set of activities which we had to participate in starting from creating baloon towers, group skipping, flying kites etc. One of the activities was to write a team poem which should have the team name (mine was Purple Team) and should have the basic principle which team agreed upon (We had chosen Winning, Never Giving Up, Being Ethical); I was trusted with the task of creating a poem in 15 minutes of time, and this was what I came up with.

The Warriors of Purple Hue

At the behest of the cries of war,
When the armies gather from near and far,
We are a band of warriors fighting amidst iron & dust,
Fighting for a cause righteous and Just.

For a single victory many battles we fight & hop,
Never letting go until we spend the last drop,
Our desire to win brought us together to far,
Yet enjoying every moment of togetherness & the war.

The exhaustion of war & satisfaction at heart,
Together we perfect the battle and it’s art,
Finding the purpose in wounds & midnight dew,
We are the warriors radiating in our Purple Hue

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Urban Shots – Bright Lights

Editor: Paritosh Uttam 
Publisher: Grey Oak/ Westland
Price: 199/-
Pages: 204
The Bright Lights Urban Shots collection is the compilation of twenty-nine short stories by twenty-one authors. In the editor’s words the idea behind Bright Lights was to illuminate the different aspects of urban life and he has been successful doing that. The assortment of stories in the book ensures that a wide Diaspora of the Urban Life is very well covered. There are stories about relationships, careers, ambition, deceit, passion and soul searching. The book is lighter as compared with the other two editions released alongside and makes for a quick fun read.

Double Mixed (Namit V. Nair): A beautiful story about infidel relationships and how people are trapped in one of the most awkward circumstances. A perfectly woven tale of human relationships that will leave you smiling.

Maami Menace (Pradeep D. Raj): A humorous story about an interfering old neighbour and a families’ effort to thwart her off. A story which has happened to almost all of us reminding of a neighbour whose visit we dreaded.

Jo Dikhta Hai Woh Bikta Hai (Sneh Thakur): A story about the ambitions of the youth and the ordeals of the FMCG industry. A story about how people start doing what it takes, a story about the eternal debate of end before means.

Mr. Periera (Ahmed Faiyaz): A warm and gooey story about two people between different generations with books as the bridge between them. This would remind you of the person who introduced you to your passion.

Some more enjoyable tales from the collection- Cats & Sponge (Meena Bhatnagar), Hot Masala (Jhangir Kerawala)

Summary: A fun collection of stories good to go for daily reading to liven up one’s mood.

Ratings: 7/10

 

Auszeichnung Zeit

For those wondering what the above title is; it stands for Award Time in German. It was very kind of Shilpa from A Rose is a Rose to bestow ‘The Versatile Blogger’ award on my blog. Things like these matter a lot for keeping the motivation, specially when you are emerging out of hibernation. Thanks a lot Shilpa for this award and also sticking to my blog even when I was struggling to write a new post.

So like all other awards this award too comes with some riders:

  • Nominate 15 fellow Bloggers
  • Inform the Bloggers of their nomination
  • Share 7 Random things about yourself
  • Thank the Blogger who nominated you
  • Add the Versatile Blogger Award picture to your Blog Post
  • So last things first and here goes the picture of the award.



    And a tonne of thanks goes to Shilpa for the award. Now comes the tough part coming about 7 random things about myself.

  • I am a crazy Harry Potter fan, have watched all movies and read all their books more than 15 times
  • Motor Sports & Driving is my kind of adventure, water sports are an absolute no
  • I have a very sweet tooth, and I cannot resist a well made brownie
  • Buying and researching cars and gadgets is one of my favorite past time apart from reading & writing
  • I believe in Astrology and horoscopes but then I am not crazy about it and also believe that there are very few genuine people who know this art or science
  • I have a weak corner for sunglasses, Perfumes and watches
  • I have been blogging for 6 years now and I don’t think it would ever be enough.
  • I would have loved to tag 15 bloggers but then I have been away from the blogging circuit for a while and most of the bloggers I follow have already got this award. So I am not tagging any of the bloggers, but if you are reading this and you haven’t received this award before consider yourself awarded.

    Love, Friends & A Little Chocolate Cake

    I think this commercial totally cuts across the human mindset. I could so much relate to the fact that how we can get so involved with our future aspirations that we always forget to indulge and enjoy the present. The fact that aspirations keep on rising and so does our age; sometimes we find that the time has simply passed and we didn’t even had a glimpse of how it.
    Recently I celebrated my 30th birthday, which made me realize that it has been a long time since I have been gracing the mother earth with my esteem presence. I feel that I too have been responsible for trying to run the rat race behind the perfect life. It started from the first position in the class to percentages in the board examinations, lead me to fight for an engineering seat and then an MBA degree. When I thought the fight was over it started all over again for the high paying jobs, better designation, buying a car and a house. And after all that it still continues for a better car, second home, exotic vacations, larger pay checks, and still larger egos. I was wondering is it all that my life has been about? Are these the things which define me, me as an individual as a person? Are these the most significant things in my life?
    Surprisingly the answer to all the above questions is a big NO, surprisingly these things are which matter the least. If you have made the right choices and been sincere to what you have done in life, sooner or later all these things fall into the place. What make the life different is how you made the people around you feel, and how the people touched you and your life? The fact that you have felt love and friendship in your life; the feeling where you know with or without the “social perks” you would still be loved and cherished for who you are make all the difference in the world.
    I can’t help feeling so blessed and lucky to have felt all of the above in these 30 years. On this birthday, Wifee and my friends planned a surprise where they all will come at 12 in the night to wish me. They meticulously planned almost every detail and people re-arranged their schedule to make it at the right time. Now, being one smart a** that I am, I had already got a whiff and was able to predict almost what was being planned by Wifee & the friends. As soon as they all gathered outside the hall, Wifee had left the door unlatched when everybody dashed in startling me while wishing Happy Birthday. It was such an over whelming moment and a very happy one too. Life is not worth without love & friendship surrounding you to make you feel special.
    Though I claimed that it was my instincts and eye for detail that I actually was able to guess they were coming. But one thing which I didn’t confess was that more than the instincts and eye for detail it was my longing and faith in them that helped me do it. I was so sure that neither the Wifee nor my friends would let my birthday go by without making me feel special. I guess it was my anticipation of them as a part of my life and my trust in them, which they not only kept but also pushed it higher than I could have thought, that made me sense their plans.
    So there was a bash and a lot of fun, and yes I was not surprised as the Wifee and the friends have expected it. But then sometimes not being surprised can be much more rewarding and comforting than anything else in the world. Having a Wife who would love you beyond you can imagine, having friends who can make a dull evening to a bright sunshine. With pleasures like these life is good and then sometimes we add a little extra chocolate cake to it.

    Welcome 2012

    So another year has ended, 2011 was good for me personally and professionally. I became a published author, had some great personal high moments, got a promotion, was recognized and appreciated for the hard work that I had put in throughout the year. All in all a year which was well spent some joys, some regrets but still full of life. However, this blog got grossly neglected during this year which is one of the regrets of 2011.
    As I have already written I despise the general idea of the new year for my own reasons. However, after moving to Bangalore and living with the family I have started having our own kind of celebrations. Every New Year we identify a resort or a hotel on outskirts or weekend getaways in Bangalore and stay there for couple of days celebrating the New Year. We had a blast, spending the evening by the riverside enjoying the scenic beauty, a bit of dance, a bit of teen patti, antakshari and loads of fun. Here are some pictures I clicked of the place we visited.

    So coming back to the New Years, the most prominent tradition in New Years for me are the resolutions. I love doing New Year resolutions and then trying to follow it all throughout the year. Last year I made multiple visits to Coimbatore with my boss, in one of these trips my boss inquired if I would mind listening to a discourse by his spiritual guru. I mean no matter how disinclined you are spiritually but you cannot say no to your boss; so I agreed (in my defense all my colleagues travelling with us agreed too). He then played a discourse called Dinacharya which was old I guess given on last eve of 2007, where his guru TT Rangarajan discussed the concept of Dinacharya and emphasized on promising to oneself on doing something for 365 days a year and then keeping that promise. The discourse was inspiring and visionary which challenged one to push the limits, and it would be an understatement to say that I was really impressed. Though I haven’t joined the institution but I have the Discourse with me and I keep hearing it once in a while to find self inspiration. If you are looking a spiritual, practical and yet inspiring way to keep yourself motivated you should try listening to that discourse. I have decided that the following activities would be my new year resolution which I would be try and accomplish this year.

    1- I will do some form of physical exercise everyday of the year, minimum 15 minutes every day. This can be walking, gym, running, playing or anything else but at least 15 minutes every day.
    2- I will update this blog at least four times every month.
    3- I will update my professional blog at least once a month.
    4- I will learn to play Tennis this year. By the end of this year I should be able to play tennis in the full court without a handicap.
    5- I will be more responsive on my personal email. I will reply to any email I get on a working day within the same day.

    So these are my New Year resolutions which I would try and follow religiously, what are yours?