home is calling

All winter I have watched this pilsbury commercial “home is calling”. Every single time, it leaves me with a lump in my throat and a curious yearning in the pit of my stomach.  The ad just makes me want. Want to click my heels together and fly off home. Makes me want to smell certain smells, see certain things are truly home and can only happen in India. The strong smell of flowers and fruits combined with that of the exhaust fumes. The dust rising to meet the first raindrops of the year.

Mom making chapattis, the very distinct “chaan” sound of the metal spoon against the kadai. The sound of the sabziwala saying something indistinct, but that tells you he is here. Same for the doodhwala and his cycle horn. The doodhwala at home now has a bike, I wish he’d kept the horn, it has memories.  The taste of plain daal chawal with ghee, fresh hari chatni, mangoes in Watkhed, smal desi ones, their juice, sticky and running off my face and hands..more mangoes, desi ber and oranges..santare, their heavenly taste, eaten, basking in the pale winter sun atop razai left to air out.  The sound of an india pakistan cricket match, where you know that even if you close your eyes, and not watch anymore the sounds from the neighbourhood will tell you exactly what happened.  To tell the truth, I miss malai (cream) every single day of my life here. Its also probably the reason why i successfully lost weight but still wo doodh hi kya jispe malai na ho! 

Some things I know I can never see with the same eyes again. I have been too far away from it now. But sometimes when I go home I find there is no home. Things that I remember no longer exist. Other, more american “progressive” things have taken their place. Who am I to judge that, I live in amrika, I cannot talk about americanization. Because I know that if or when I leave the US, certain things, certain smells and memories will me want to click my heels and fly away home…my other home, Kansas.

Did Dororthy want that too? Did she miss the lad of Oz when she went back to Kansas? Did she want to fly back there and visit her friends? See if any witches have cropped up …just basically say hello? The place where she grew up and learnt so much, did she want to click her heels and go back there again? To the land of magic? Because after some time, the line begins to blur, the line between what was home and what is home. India one day may be as alien to me as US was. The US will always be alien to me in some ways and truly now so will India. So does the Ad make me tearful not just because am being usual senti self or because there is no home? Too many or too few loyalties. Too much distance, maybe too much growing up..sometimes I wish I could click my heels and let them decide where to take me, and I know whereever they do, I’ll open my eyes and want it to be the other one.

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really now?

Heyo..yeps am back so quickly. So when I was a kid, I had this book…i dont remember anymore what it was called…it was totally the in thing at the time. You had your friends fill out inane things..such as what is the one thing you like about me? about yourself…what was it called?  Eitherways, what I was remembering what one of my friends wrote, she reads this blog, may or may not remember it, but she qouted forrest gump. Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you gonna get. I append, life is like a box of chocolates, you nver know what you gonna get, choose one never the less and if it sucks, spit it out and start afresh, but never fear the box of chocolates.

mmm.. i want chocolate now…mmm..(snaps back to reality). Umm..thats pretty much all I think of really..coz i recently had one of those liquor filled chocolates..some raspberry or something..eww..so i sought another one and it wasnt something i liked either..blergh..and then i realized I need a new box, like I need a new boy. Old boys with new exteriors, dont good experiences make. And with that gem..adios!

food declaration

Hello Blog World..hows it goin? I have been busy and will continue to be busy for a few more weeks..bear/beer with me!

Other than that.. I just thought I’d tell you about my recent food adventures and other random thoughts. I recently had spring break..which was quite un-springy due to lack of exciting activities. I did, however, get some work done..so it was good for that specific reason. Its crunch time in D world. Now on to food. I have been off bakin and cooking for a while now…frankly I need a congenial atmosphere and people to cook for, so I am hoarding all my recipes to cook when I go home and when I go visit some family…which is on the charts! 

I cannot bake for just myself..I need occasions to celebrate, people to feed and ofcourse people means I dont end up eating all of it! I am planning something new..lets see how it goes :D. During break I did bake up a broccoli cornbread from C&Z and also tried asparagus for the first time! Asparagus was good…very nice snack..light and crunchy and overall good. Not something I would be like wow this is my favorite vegetable, but on the whole quite nice! The broccoli cornbread however wasn’t that amazing. So we will leave it at that.

I want a good cupcake, some greek food and lots of gelato, which I will indulge in, in SFO! Yay! I think I read too many food blogs..I sometimes wonder if I should switch to the Baking school and get a degree in baking instead. And be a personal trainer who bakes…how oxymoron-ish is that?

I am also dying to try a mini muffin recipe…coming up soon! I will try and then I will img_1741.jpgtell! Yes I do bite and tell 😀

Other than eating I havent done anything momentous for a while muffin a callingnow..I really should get a life. As soon as I do, I will be back! BTW that will not be untill the SFO visit, so dont hold yer horses! I leave you with some pics from recent cooking adventures…ohh I just remembered…I just got a plant too..its sweet!

Another tag!

Its not just that I love tags, but Chandni’s tags are always so relevant..So here for the grace of god, go I:

Ten things you wish you could say to people right now.

– Boy, are you hot or what

– Can we get this done right now?

-Can we stop going around in circles

-I completely and totally believe in you and I know you will do what it takes

-trust me

– I hope you dance

-What a bitch, never seen one like you and I hope I never have to

-Passive agressiveness isnt going to get you anywhere

-I miss you however much I say I don’t

– ohh remember something some of the times, will ya?

Nine things about yourself:

– I am quite demented at times with quite bizzare mood swings

– Same to same as Chandu: I forgive but dont forget, dont mess with me again, because it adds up till I can’t forgive any more. (the last part is just me)

– I hate fighting

– I luurve food

– I can’t stand not knowing….I have no patience for things out of my control.

– I find it incredibly hard to share minor parts of my day and exceptionally easy to share all the big news!

– I am super protective of my friends and family, specially mom who is a babe who needs to be taken care of (also 6 inches taller than me and probably fitter..but I said I was protective)

– I am not fond of movies, I like them, but they are not my choice of entertainment

– I love dogs and cats and still miss my dog a lot!

Eight ways to win my heart:

– smile..a lot

– get my jokes and laugh

-have a variety of interests!

– treat me like a delicate flower..but only once in a while

-trust me

-listen to me but also tell me to stop whining

-cook well and enjoy doing it and feeding me!

-enjoy books and music ..anything, not just what I like

Seven things that cross your mind quite often:

– when will this nightmare end

– why am I doing this to my self (Applies to PhD and spinning both)

– hey, now that makes sense

– have i forgotten something

– what’s for dinner

– Whoops, did I really say that

– he’s cute..but naaaaah.

Six things you wish you never did:

– taken back all my books from her

– cutting ties to her

– introduce myself to him

– moved against my intuition

-become dependent on other people for solutions

– flaunt my superior understanding of things.

Five turnoffs:

– spitting

-body odor

-narcissm

-MCP’s

– lies that trip over themselves

Four turn ons

– crisp white button down shirts

– a hard workout and hot shower

– Passion for life and fun

-Intelligence and wit

Three things you want to do before you die:

-learn to tell lies real good whoppers!

– write a book

– have reams of entries when I google my own name…umm you dont do that??

Two smiley’s that describe you:

😀

:))

One confession:

mmm.. I had a huge crush on a super gross guy in like 8th or 9th. If my classmates from school find out I am dead..very few people know who PD is 😉 

Gang of eight

I have been accused! wrongly accused of having blog constipation. I eat a diet of healthy fruit and veggies. I have no constipation! However, since I have been accused and then given some medicine to cure this so called malady….

I have been tagged! Me loves tags 😀 So thanku Chandni jee…so here goes the eights!

8 things I am passionate about:

1. Food: Food always comes first. Without food no directions! I love eating, reading about and making good food. I cannot eat food made without thought to their ingredients. I love feeding people too. A baking expedition where I am the only eater is sorely disappointing! So I mostly spend my free time reading food blogs and dreaming of food.

2. Working out/running/spinning/aerobics: Well, once you have eaten, you have to burn it off too you know? I love the feeling working out gives me….currently am on a sleepy high after some very relaxing yoga.mmm….

3. Reading: It can take any form books or blogs, papers or magazines, you name it, I will read it..at least once. I still read about 2-3 books a week. Not reading in the bathroom gives me actual constipation (umm….Too Much Information? )

4. Women’s Rights: I would’nt call it feminism..my perspective differs a little bit from the equality perspective, but yeah I believe very passionately: what a man can do, a woman can do better!

5. Psychology: Umm..I am doing my PhD in the stuff you know? I gotta have atleast some passion for it! I love thinking about how people work and how amazingly complex human behavior is..much more so than the human anatomy!

6. India: I am passionate about letting people know about my country and what it stands for. I wish I could show everyone the India that we see…not what they imagine!

7. Green: I believe that we do not have the right to screw the environment, we cannot and should not throw trash without thinking about what the end result will be (Specially in India) . One person not throwing that empty plastic bottle from a train/car window does make a difference.

8. Theatre/Ballet/Dance: I love performing and watching performances. I also love the madness that comes with organizing them and I miss it.

Eight Things I want to do before I die:

1. complete the darn PhD. It seems never ending you know?

2. See India from from one end to another…and no planes please!

3. Write a book: a very sexy, completely irreverent irony/satire/farce would be amazing!

4. Learn Ballet

5. Reach skinnyness

6. Have the “moment”: from Whitney houston’s song :” Give me one moment in time, when I’m all that I thought I would be, when all of my dreams are a heartbeat away and the answers are all up to me”

7. Run a marathon

8. scuba diving and living like a beach bum on an island somewhere with no phone and internet…wishful thinking huh?

Eight things I say often:
1.”essentially”
2. he bhangwaan
3. uh-oh
4. Am good and how are youuuuu?
5. Why me?
6. ugh
7. Its cold ..really cold…and I am colddddddd
8. do you have any questions? If not then let me give you a quiz and ruin your weekend …followed by diabolical laugh!
Eight books I’ve read recently:
The Straight man
Symposium
Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (reread)
On top of Spaghetti (cookbook)
Mohawk (By the same author as The straight man..very nice!)
Nearly Wed (irrelevant chicklit)
Wheel of Time book 3: The Dragon Reborn (reread)
Ad Land (about origin etc of advertising..very fascinating).
Eight songs I could listen to, over and over:
Losing my religion
Im going slightly mad
Tujhse Naaraz Nahi Zindagi/ Mera kuch samaan
Eye of the Tiger
Bavra Man
I go to extremes
What’s love got to do with it
What a feeling
Eight things that attracts me to my best friends:
Long Conversations (preferrably intelligent and coherent ones)
Humor
Honesty
Craziness (some amount is neccesary)
Overall cheerfulness
Foodie
The adventurousness that I lack
ahem…punctuality…ask my mom, I hate her bieng late evn for geniuine reasons
Eight People who will be doing this tag whether they want or not: 
nah..I’ll just let them quake with fear at the coming of the tag! It will pounce unannounced. Since my brain is already fried, please leave a comment if you desire a tag to remove any residual blog constipation.

To anything..we just need a toast!

Sorry for the delay in posting as usual! Things got busy-ish. Then I got sick. Been sick for the past week. Had the flu. SInce I havent had the flu so bad for such a long time, this was double bad! On Monday it was just fever, by tuesday my nose ran away and by wednesday I no longer had a voice. Soo I did not teach on wednesday, and now as a teacher I know how much a cancelled class sucks! Oh, yeah am teaching now, its kind of fun, my students arent super bad or over smart as well. They are nice people so it going well so far…I’ve been told to wait for the first exam before passing judgement on niceness.

Funny today, I have been thinking about certain things for a while now. I have been wanting to write about them for a while too. About friends and friend-ships and lau-ships and sheeps that sail away in the night. Oh well, back to the topic. Friendship for me truly has been a boat that sailed away in the night. Barely ever do I find someone I really gel with, I guess I am picky, I guess I am also looking in the wrong place most of the time. However, what friends I have, I tend to keep. However, politics has forever been my nightmare. I  didnt get it when I was in CHRC. I dont get it now. I dont get how people decide which side of the fence they wanna hang, its usually never my side. I end up sitting up there on that fence wondering which side to drop on and ultimately both sides hate me. I dont get group dynamics, I dont get close friendships either.  I dont get how people can decide who is right or wrong without looking at themselves first. Its not just them but me as well. I am also not a good fighter, when faced with illogical arguments, I lose my eloquence and usually stare at people gobsmacked and am rarely able to articulate my thoughts. So, where does that leave me? On the wrong side of the fence, staring at the walls of my room (which are rather tastefully decorated). That is fine with me, because I am coming to terms with who I am, a loner, who cant deal with politics, so better to stay out of it. A person who keeps their mouth shut is looking more and more attractive, however, have you ever known me to keep my mouth shut…like ever?

Changing tack, I still remember my mom asking me to keep quiet for 5 minutes and me bieng unable to do it, rest assured mom, I am getting plenty of practice now.

Talking about cat fights, arent blogs the pettiest place to pick fights? One of the blogs I  read is getting random petty comments out of the middle of nowhere, with people critisizing everything as to how OCD she is to, how self absorbed she is. I wouldnt have ever thought of all this if I hadnt read the comments. Arent blogs your part of the world? Where you write things as you see them ? Your corner where people are not to intrude? Yet they do, they definately do. And I am not going to fuel this by telling you which blog it is. I got in trouble too…but I am always in trouble aint I?

As a last tack of the day, sorry, I am scrambled, I read a funny funny book. If you are in any way related to academia, went to grad school or even went to crazy department meetings, you must read this book. It is a satirical take on a department of English, its impending budget cut and a couple of geese. Its “The Straight Man” by Richard Russo.  Funny, funny, highly recommended.

Will post soon..I promise…my morose valentine’s day post is soon to come. I also plan to post some food and pet pics..so stay tuned!

Bring in the new year and other stories

Hello,

A very happy and yummy new year to ye all! I am pleased with mine so far, not considering that I spent most of the 1st sleeping off the excesses of the past couple of days. I wish though, that the parties would come to an end. I am kind of tired of seeing people and plenty sick of their dramas, the alcohol and definately the food which aint helping my waistline any. See how easily I go from happy new year to cribby new year :D..me is expert!

Anyways all the drama about food really makes me wonder, these skinny people, if you are one of them..more power to you..but I am not, so allow me to divide people into these categories. So, the skinny people, never really seem to think before they eat something, they eat to their heart’s content and unfortunately also push food onto other people, who should know better and resist. I was also gobsmacked to hear someone telling me that kheer has only milk and therefore no calories…umm milk, full fat milk, has plently calories, when combined with seviyan(sp) roasted in ghee and tons of sugar..ahem no calories? which world are we living in?  Then the men who claim that alcohol has very little calories, which justifies their getting sloshed at a drop of the hat and the other fat women who dont really get the concept of priorities continously asking me..dont you feel like having some? Eh, actually I DONT. One can eat only so much heavy food in a given period of time, and I am done! I can no longer take these heavy dinners and late nights because my body is suffering. I am perpetually tired, my workouts are tiring because of inappropriate fuel and lets just say its enough desi food to last me the rest of the year.

Am I becoming a crazy NRI with a workout complex or is it a natural reaction to everyone being so terribly gluttonous..for lack of a better word? It is also very funny to note that these people who also have weight problems play badminton for an hour and half and justify their food. Uhh, I workout for like 2 hours a day, most days, and I still cannot justify that kind of food on a regular day to day basis. A treat is always nice, but should be treated as a treat.

Talking about workouts, I am currently doing the Jillian Micheals, Making the Cut, and my butt is being kicked like it never been kicked before. I have not been this sore since I first started training about 9 years ago! So, its my machoistic fun of the year! Its a great workout and I would recommend the book to anyone who is in decent shape already and would like some more strength training!

Hopefully, the food fest is now over and I can go back to my spartan ways and enjoy my workouts and actually see their results instead of just maintaining ..and you go eat and workout and make 2008 a healthy year for you, whichever way healthy strikes you, and please tell me if i am a crazy gym rat. I need independent opinions!

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