Strange but true!

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Here I am, at yet another confusing phase of life, aspiring clarity of thoughts. Its time again to step into the unknown, the unknown being parenting.

I have been having strange thoughts about all of this. What makes anyone want a baby? Why would anyone want to go through life threatening activities to have a kid?
Do people do this because that is what is expected of them? Was this some sort of scheme to ensure that all of us get trapped into the responsibility of bringing up a kid? Was this the easiest achievement of your life? For e.g. If you ask a 60 year old what did you do in the last 60 years the expected answer is – I raised 2 kids who are now well off.
At some point I felt uncomfortable that I have these weird thoughts.

I was worried about disturbing the stability we have now. We have the luxury of choice when it comes to work and finance now. We can afford to give up one of the jobs to live together. We can choose a lesser paying job, so that we have time for each other and not lose our youth in the office. I am afraid to give up these choices.

More than all of that, I wondered what kind of parents we would be. I have no idea. There were many things my parents painstakingly taught me, but I left them at home. I don’t know what needs to be taught and what should be left to them. I wondered if we are ready for all this…

I worried about sharing the love of my life…yeah how selfish of me!!! I worried about the changes that would take over our life…I worried about many more things…but I dint have the nerve to say I don’t want to go this route.

I still worry about all of this…but I decided to go ahead and give it a try. I never wanted our baby to be an accidental by product of us having fun. I am confident now – if and when the pregnancy test turns positive, neither of us will use any swear words as reaction or will be shocked and try to accept it. I have a feeling we will be thrilled. I believe that means we really want to experience all of this.

Just like I never wanted to be married until I fell in love, I am sure I will love all of this at the end of it all. Wish us luck!

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2011 – in retrospect…

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Well… its that time again, when everyone wishes each other a ‘happy new year’ and everyone truly wishes that coming year would be better than the one ending… 🙂

2011 had been easy on me. The only major tensions I remember are the world cup matches, the final in particular and when mom got sick and those times when my periods were delayed ;). Which I consider to be very lucky.

Though I wasn’t directly affected by any, we saw a lot of natural disasters, all over the globe. A lot of unrest too.

Many famous personalities close to heart passed away this year. Sometimes surprising me how close they felt..

Lots of fun times with friends… Missing many events back home…Growing together as a couple…Working hard at gym…Innovating experimenting and stabilizing cooking…Getting closer to nature… Learning many new things…

My contribution to the world this year is an idea… Use your swimming goggles while cutting onions… 🙂

2011 was indeed a great year 🙂
It will always be close to my heart…

Happy 2012 🙂

October :(

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I don’t like the way this October unfolded…

It was most unexpected that Steve Jobs would have to die so soon… Well thinking back… If he was even a teeny bit better he may have stayed back at his company…

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Then it was the turn of Jagjit Singh

“….Tumhe bhulana bhi chahu toh kis tarah bhuloo….

ke tum to phir bhi haqiqat ho koi khwab nahi…. “

I loved your voice… The beauty of your rendition captivates me…

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And then, I came to know about Dennis Ritchie…

He influenced me a lot in my teens… and he created the computer language I learnt first… I owe my decision to be an engineer partly to him…

Rest in Peace!

Meetings and elevators

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Today we had a meeting with ‘the others’ in the ‘other office’.

The ‘Others’ are the not so fond of colleagues of another team.

The ‘other office’ is about half a mile walk away from ours.

And we are tied to each other. When there is talk about untying us, my manager equates it to hip surgery. His manager thinks of it as brain surgery. And most of the rest of the world says divorce.

Anyway, our meetings are invariably intense in a corporate way. So today, when we got out of the meeting, my team got into the elevator and continued discussions on what just happened and should happen in the future…

Another person had also joined us in the elevator, this person got out when we reached 15th floor. And we continued our discussions.. After about a minute we realized that the elevator wasn’t moving anymore. Any guesses?

Yeah… We never hit the ground floor button..

🙂

Luray Caverns, Virginia

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We, the couple, visited the caverns of Luray, VA during our labor weekend trip. This was such an incredible feast to the eyes that I decided to do a separate post on them.

Mother nature’s craft work left us spell-bound. How did she know to fry eggs?

Or design such draperies…

A closer look of the drapery… Doesn’t it look like cloth?

My favorite…the dream lake…This was the awesomest part 🙂

May be a fallen tree?

And just to give an idea of the enormity…

They also had what is called a stalacpipe organ. But it was way too crowded to enjoy it.

Cameras used : Nikon D40 and Canon SD 1300

Tips if you are planning to visit:
Try to avoid holiday weekends, as it was crowded. The whole experience elevates to a different level when there is less noise.

It’s a cave, don’t expect fresh air.
It can be a little difficult to walk for aged or not physically active people.

The skyline drive and Stony man

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Labor day weekend kind of marks unofficial end of summer here. So there it was.. Summer fading away and we, the couple badly needed a trip all by ourselves… And we picked Virginia… The skyline drive, two trails and the Caverns at Luray to be more specific.
The caverns were so breathtaking that I wrote about them here.

The skyline drive was spectacular too.

It’s actually a 105 miles drive through Shenandoah national park, on the blueridge mountains of VA. All along there are overlooks offering gorgeous views of the valley and the mountains. We covered two thirds of the drive and did two hikes. First day evening we did the stony man hike. We found it easy, took 3 hrs in all. Stony man trail has a smaller loop called little stony man. Here’s a view from little stony man summit. There were handsome guys doing rock climbing 🙂

We moved on to stony man summit.. The place was much more quiet..

The sky was cloudy, so we missed out what would have been a spectacular sunset 😦 But as a consolation we saw deers, stag, a kiddo bear and lots n lots of butterflies..

Next day we hiked a harder trail, it promised a waterfall.. Except for the niagara falls, all of the waterfalls I have been to here had very less water. Blame it on the waterfalls in Kerala… I am so used the watery waterfalls :).  Though there were no breathtaking views, we saw a lot of huge rocks and trees.

Here’s the view from what I believe is the best overlook of the drive

What is wrong in talking sex?

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I read this article in TOI. I am disturbed, furious and then plain sad.

I have never known a disabled person, except for one aunt who is partially disabled. She was married and has a son too. Somehow this topic never crossed my mind.

Once my initial shock was dealt with, I found no surprises in what is happening. Me being what is considered normally abled person, was never given any sex education. I was also a day scholar throughout my education, so there were no knowledge sharing sessions that typically happened in hostels.  There is only so much you can learn from bollywood and hollywood.

Post college, work days, me and my room mate wanted us to be educated about the crucial missing links. There was nothing like quality sex education available , and we turned to watching youtube masala videos for a basic crash course. How pathetic is that!!!

My husband was also on the same boat. Together we have explored much, but our knowledge and experience remains crude.

Who do you blame for this? What is wrong in educating people on sex?

How can sex be taboo in a country which has Kamasutra to its credit??? I have no answers!!!

Remember to love

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I walk past the ground zero everyday as part of my work commute. I am not disturbed by this possibly because I never saw how it was before. But it has been slightly difficult the past week and even today…

In the under two minute walk close to ground zero and the trinity church, I saw people bringing flowers to the site, tying white ribbons with the message ‘Remember to love’. Their faces had shades of sorrow as well as relief. I couldn’t bring myself to take a picture of those ribbons, but see the pic from yahoo news here.

And these gestures by people who very well realize it could have been them in those towers planted a strange thought in me – What if I had actually seen the towers in real, would it have been as easy to live through it?

I am not sure… I know and hope that I will never be able to find that out.

There were many discussions in the Indian media about a lot of related topics… Changes to the world, Financial sides of this fight etc etc

I dint see anyone highlighting one fact that was of particular interest to me. The fact that after the fateful day there wasn’t any major successful terrorist attacks in USA. The fact that this nation’s security is of supreme importance to the leaders and they will do everything they can to maintain it, is, to say the least, very relieving.

And the below is from a friend’s facebook status after Delhi high court blast.

Dear Mr Terrorist,
It is time you too learned a lesson:
Your terror does not work – at least in India. Its a normal story in India…
We are unable and incapable of taking it seriously….
Blast whatever you want…Parliament, Zaveri Bazar, Red Fort, German Bakery, Taj Hotel….
Our Govt does not care!!…. So try something better next time….

You know what was most infuriating about it – Knowing that it is true…

An apparent arranged marriage

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My sister completed her PG recently and has moved out of town pursuing her career. And my parents are back to where they were six years back.

When I graduated, there was immense pressure on my parents to get me married… Especially since I was moving out to a new city all by myself.. My dad happens to be a strong believer in astrology, and since his astrologer said ‘ not yet ‘ about my wedding, I was spared for a while. As much as i try to ensure it my sis may not get the breather I got 😦
In my ongoing attempts I try to educate my parents of the need for her to identify what she wants from her partner and what she can be as a partner.

Personally, I don’t care who plays Cupid… Parents, friends, relatives, internet…As long as the couple gets to decide under no pressure, all is fair. That being said, I had my own reservations against arranged marriage.

1. I wanted to be able to trust my partner absolutely and expected that from him. I had no idea how to evaluate this in a stranger.

2. I was very particular about personal hygiene. Everyone appears clean for a date. So no luck there.

3. I wanted us to love each other without any external force telling us to love each other. This was never going to happen in the arranged setup.

4. I wanted to test it out and be confident before I said I do. Taboo topic.

There were many more little things that mattered the world to me, but could never be sure of in the arranged set up.

Though I had met about 4 guys under the supervision of parents and relatives, when I said no they accepted it. My parents treasure my happiness but have difficulty understanding what makes me happy or why it makes me happy or both.

So finally when I realized that my colleague and best friend has grown out of those roles, to be a partner for life we decided to inform our parents. My parents asked a lot of questions. My answers made them realize no point in saying no. They agreed. They knew him from earlier train journeys.His parents dismissed it as infatuation. His elder brother was not married too.We decided to give them time, we were in no rush. We were together all the time, it dint matter that we were not actually married.

All this while my parents pretended to the rest of the world that they were still looking for a suitable groom. It took three years to get both parents to meet up. All went relatively well and we have been married for about two years now. To this date none of my relatives know that it was a love marriage. My parents took extra care to ensure that this dint ‘leak’ out. The caste difference was brilliantly covered up. All this was done just so my sister will not be the sister of a love married girl!! And on his side, many relatives declared cold war which is ongoing even today…

Though we did nothing wrong, we remain sinners.. And for no fault of their’s our parents faced a lot of criticism and unpleasant exchanges… Love marriages are acceptable only on screen, in real life its revolutionary!!!

PS: Most ridiculous advice we received: (read this in a threat tone) You guys are responsible for the future of this relationship. Don’t come to us.

We were way too amazed to respond 🙂

Why this? Why now?

For a long time now, I have been following some of those wonderful blogs out there and limiting my expressions to comments on the issues they discussed. This has been an incredibly educating experience. Of late I find myself longing for them to discuss certain topics…may be it’s time I took some initiative…

Also living half the globe away from family is taking it’s toll on me apparently! I miss people who would listen to every silly pointless story I had to say 🙂
With this blog I kind of get the assurance that someone is there to hear me out… To couple that with the mystic thrill of anonymity makes me wonder… What actually took me so long??? Laziness possibly…

I sure hope to wander around, not so lonely as the cloud 😉
And whoever said footprints are not made by sitting down, let’s hope I would be an exception…