When you feel like Betty Cooper……

When you feel like Betty Cooper……

I don’t know how many of you read the Archie comics as kids, but I always did and still enjoy reading them. My favorite character has always been Betty Cooper…..

Betty Cooper perfect in every sense… She is great person, good at everything, be it sports, cooking or fashion. She nails everything perfectly and obviously the outside world thinks that her life is so perfect….. but was her life so perfect…. No, it was not. She had everything except Archie Andrews who meant the world to her….. He was her world but she was just a part of his world…. they were best friends but her role in his life was just about that which was probably just a small part of his world. Why…. she did everything right for him…. but that’s how it is and will be… certain things in life cannot be changed and the best way to move on is accepting what is front of you instead of fighting and going against the tide because that only leads to more distress and depression is what I believe.

So when you feel like Betty cooper remember the points listed below:

  1. Not everything happens or works the way you want it…. don’t get distressed but accept it and move on.
  2. Be strong!
  3. Enjoy what you like to do and do it no matter what!
  4. Be down to earth and humble.
  5. Have a good-natured positive personality.
  6. Aim to be perfect in what you like to do.
  7. Be nice to everyone around you even if the day is not treating you nicely.
  8. Don’t Be selfish.
  9. Don’t Judge anyone.
  10. Last but not least…… Live life to the fullest!

These are my take aways from the character of the cliched Archie Comics!

I enjoyed writing this blog, I hope you enjoy reading it and take in the positivity Betty Cooper brings to life!

Let’s Have a Conversation!

This morning I received  a message which read..

“We, as a society, really have no idea how *suffocated* people are in their emotions. Most people have *nobody* to express themselves entirely to. Everyone is holding back their *vulnerabilities* to maintain the *social image* of a confident and happy person.

Heart-to-heart conversations have become *rare, artificial and shallow*. And most hearts are filled with *empty defences*.

Most people can’t even talk to their *life-partners openly* for the fear of being judged or rejected. Emotions await just a release. Social images make sure weakness is not glorified.

Children have *bottled up* stress. Young people suffer anxiety and depression.

It is just lack of social support. It is *lack of non-judgmental* friendships. It is result of *fast and busy lives* where nobody has time to just sit and watch someone cry.

It is result of *instant and impatient lifestyle* practices, that *emotions have started feeling like waste of time*.

We have *whatsapp and facetime and social media* – and we also have *stress and anxiety and depression*.

Our forefathers had neither. Because they talked to each other. Because talking helps.

The face-to-face type talking, the *just-listen-to-me* type talking, the *hold-my-hand-and-let-me-cry* type talking, the *sit-next-to-me-and-listen-to-my-silence* type talking… the talking where the person can be themselves and *say anything they feel without the fear of any judgement or loss or rejection*.

Today we don’t like that type of talking. Those conversations when someone begins to undress one’s mind. In fact we *avoid people*.

And so, mental illness is epidemic. Naturally.There is not much we can do. But we can offer a *listening* !” 

 

It is definitely sad to see that this is so true and this is what our lives have become.

Just lift your head around you and have a look, you would see that everyone is so busy, either chatting on whatsapp or checking facebook or twitter posts.

There are so many pictures of people uploading happy pictures with smiling faces and selfie pouts but stop for a minute and is what they portraying on social media really what their lives are!

I don’t think so and I do not see the reason why anyone should even pretend!

My opinion is that today’s world is scared of confrontation, is scared of facing a society that we have created and facing the truth. If what was on social media then there would not be numerous ads on sessions by various groups on “How to be Happy” or “Happiness sessions. Do we really need to be taught on how to be happy??…. I will leave it here with a thought to ponder upon….

At least I can proudly say that I have 5 best friends… who I know I can have honest conversations and always depend on… no matter what….

Let’s… let people talk without any fear. Let’s create conversations…..

 

 

The Renaissance Man in my Life – Dr. Vepa P Sarathi….

The Renaissance Man in my Life – Dr. Vepa P Sarathi….

“‎There once was an old man of Lyme, Who married three wives at a time, When asked, ‘Why a third?’, He replied, ‘One’s absurd! And bigamy, sir, is a crime”. – All those who knew Dr. Vepa P Sarathi, would definitely recount this limerick.

25th January 2012, the world lost someone who was extraordinaire, had an aura of knowledge, an elephantine memory, sophistication and a wit and humour that no one can and would be able to match. He was a big fan of PG Wodehouse, Sherlock Holmes detective stories and the Reader’s Digest. He hated watching TV but was a big fan of The Sound of Music, My fair Lady and all Gregory Peck movies.

The world knew him as a senior advocate in the Bhopal Gas Tragedy case, Advocate General of Sikkim and the nonagenarian professor at NALSAR, but I and my sisters knew him as the grandfather who sacrificed a lot for the 3 girls he fostered in Delhi, fighting against the world, against religion, caste and bringing up three girls like his own children.

Today on his 5th death anniversary, would like to dedicate my blog to him and recount the memories we have with him as a grandfather and the other side of him.

17th July 1916, the day he was born is date that we always celebrated, no matter what. He loved cutting the cake, the birthday parties and the gatherings we had every year. One great experience and a day he enjoyed thoroughly was his 90th birthday. My sisters and I threw a surprise birthday party for him at home and invited all those who mattered… though he kept saying that you should not have done so much… we could see that he had thoroughly enjoyed that evening and kept talking about that day for months together.

He was a foodie and but not just that, he also had an affinity towards weird food combinations which he absolutely loved and cared two hoots about what the world said. One such combination, unique to him and him alone was this….. he would take a bowl, place 4 idlis, soak it in curd and pour a dollop of roohafzaa, especially during the summer, which would not fail to bring a smile on his face. He loved the small samosas sold at the NALSAR canteen, ice cream at any time and surprisingly he loved the sub sandwiches. The flip side to all this was he would advise everyone, including us, to have chyavanprash, threptin biscuits and complan daily to keep healthy!

He was a strong atheist, but read the Bhagvad Gita daily and followed it to the Tee. He completely disbelieved in caste, religion and more importantly girl child is never a burden. He was a man of modern thoughts, taught us to stand on our feet before settling down with anyone, he didn’t believe that marrying and settling down was the way life needs to be.  He was willing to spend time with my friends, share a few drinks and jokes while he was at it.

Bada Uncle as we called him, was a humble, honest and gracious gentlemen. The reason I called him humble is because, he fostered my sisters and me like his own children and sacrificed his life for us. Today we lead a life of luxury with good jobs, having had the best education and support to be where we are on this Day and time. While I praise him for having taken this step, hats off to his family who supported this decision. His wife, Shanta who lived her life taking care of us. His Son in law, Y A Rao, who had to choose between us and his family, he chose us and last but not the least his daughter Haidee, who unfortunately left Earth very early in her life, leaving us with her parents. They were a backbone to him to bring us up. They cut all those people who had something against us because we were not his blood or caste, completely from their lives. It takes a lot of guts to do what they did and will always be cherished for this reason.

At the end all I can say is that, my sisters and I were born with a silver spoon to have been adopted by this family who are responsible for who we are today!

Reminiscing my 1st Goan rendezvous!

What do we do when we need a holiday and a three day long weekend is coming up…. Head to Gooooaaaa…. I don’t know about you but I do this very thing whenever I get the opportunity!

Today I am gonna pen down my first trip to Goa and the funny incidents I remember on that trip….  More so because a friend of mine thought that I wrote so well in my first blog…. That my next should be about our first trip to Goa… Nihal this is for you and I hope you enjoy reading this blog!

My first trip to Goa was in 2006…. when I had this crazy bunch of friends out of which two still remain to be my closest buddies…. And my little sister who was then in college and alcohol was a complete No no… We were all so excited… It had many firsts… Was our first to Goa, our first road trip and my first outside of Hyderabad with my friends on a holiday!!

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Well it all started off extremely well, all excited, decided not to sleep the entire night…. The road trip started on an exciting note, with good music, cheer and lots of laughter… It continued till we made a pit stop for tea in the morning and realized we still have a long way to go and we may end up losing a day with the pace at which the driver was driving!! We urged the driver to drive at a decent pace else we would not reach on time… well that didn’t happen until Amit Tripathi, the macho man of the group flexed his muscles and sat in the front seat with the driver… somehow at that moment we reached the most famous Baga beach! That evening we started off with peach vodka shots which tasted like cough syrup… but all pretended it was the best and enjoyed our moment…… The evening passed and we had fun visiting the beach, checking out the pubs and clubs and more importantly  spending some good time together with a lot of laughter and cheer. 

The next day all the boys hired 4 bikes, 2 Bullets, 1 Pulsar and an avenger to be precise and were all set to hit the Goa, well we just hit the street and we had our first experience of a gang fight between some local Goans and us … all because someone in the group does not like dry colour thrown on him in a carnival cheer… well was sorted out and we moved on to various beautiful beaches, churches and forts. I had a friend named Stalin… who decided to show us Fort Aguada… which we gladly visited, only to realise after a couple of days that it was not Aguada but Fort Shapiro that we had seen… Actually it was our fault… we kept saying we want to visit the place where “Dil Chahta Hai” was shot… and he did exactly that. Well our rendezvous with Stalin ended there but our evening only became more interesting…. Our next stop was at the Casino… well it was precisely just a stop…. we entered the casino… saw the game tables and walked out… Ya we did exactly that.. no play at all!! :-). Last but the not the least we all decided to race back to our hotel on the four bikes, very confidently, my sister was with Nihal on the bike who is known for being a safe driver and rider…. except for the moment where he thought he dropped her off the bike when we all jumped on a bridge… and was scared to face me(though this moment lasted only 5 minutes as he finally decided to check if she was still on the bike or off the bike) and luckily for him she was still on the bike!! In fact, even today when I pass the bridge and go over the bump… I think of Nihal and relate the entire story to whoever is next to me… 

It was our last day at the beach and the day for all the water sports, lazing in the sun, playing in the water and taking in the best of Goa….. We enjoyed every moment of this trip… though it was not perfect. 

This Goan trip takes us back to lots of memories, cheer and laughter… to an extent that I don’t miss visiting Goa once a year and experience Goa differently every time…. with varied company and adventures. This trip definitely made its mark…

I look forward to my next trip to Goa and you can look forward to my next Blog on Singapore!!

 

My Unique experiences at Bangkok!

My Unique experiences at Bangkok!

This is my first blog that I will be publishing, hence I though the best thing to do is publish something I love doing as a person…. which is travelling. In the last six months I have traveled to two international locations and at least 10 Indian locations for a holidays and work. All locations were unique in their own ways, which only reminds me of the saying – everything  is the same and yet everything is different!!

Today I am writing about my travel to Bangkok, not about what I did there, but what made this trip unique and a whole different experience for me!

DSC_0005.JPGMy day started with a journey to the Damnoen Sanuak Floating market. My friend and I sat in this flat boat and head off to the market through the canals, passing houses on stilts temples and waving people, to only reach a place that was totally chaotic, filled with small “Klongs” (boats),as they call it with shops on each side selling various trinkets, souvenirs, Mango with sticky rice… and couple of unique fans and hats and the best was we were stuck in a Klongs Traffic jam…. to me this was unique. Pallavi and I enjoyed this thoroughly… let our hair down and enjoyed the moment.

My next destination that day was heading to the Tiger Temple where I got to meet the Tigers up, close and personally… I love animals and I was looking forward to this place. I have heard rumors about the tigers being drugged… etc but I wanted to put all that behind and visit them anyway. I did not regret that decision.

This place located in the Kanchanaburi province of Thailand, was heavenly. We entered the place, and there were the Tigers, sitting in an enclosure, where we could walk in and take pictures with, which excited both of us. Being our first interaction up close with a real tiger, we were initially a little apprehensive but quickly realized how similar they were to domestic cats (just with bigger teeth and claws). The tigers showed no aggression and were actually very friendly.  They seemed pretty docile and content just lying there.We took lovely pictures and moved on to meet the other animals there…. Walked around a bit and headed back to Bangkok satisfied with our unique day!

 

 

Last but the not the least, the most unique experience of that trip and may be life was the Calypso Caberet – Lady Boys Concert!!!

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It started with an unique cultural Thai experience which showcased the traditional Thai dances and food which is yummy. After dinner, is when we headed to the Caberet by the Katoeys!!

It was like a broadway show featuring the most talented Thai transgender artists! I enjoyed the show thoroughly… to me it didn’t matter that they were unlike many of us but the talent they had to showcase something so professional, so beautiful and so unique. The presentation of these outstanding  performers is a show of strength of mind, celebrating the human diversity, communicating the spirit of tolerance and most of all the roller coaster joy of a live stage filled with music, dance and beauty featuring Elvis, Julie Andrews and Beyonce look alike!

All I can say is was UNIQUE!

This led me to think differently…have a new perspective towards life…. taught me there are a lot of unique things in this world and what I need to do is open my mind and explore the world…. everything  is the same and yet everything is different!!