Four things.....

Todays post - the last in "May Photo A Day contest" is courtesy the sooper talented(n DQ) Bhavya.Well this post n her blog should tell u why!

Th prompt for today's post is "Four Things" n this is what she put together in a jiffy!

My Identity Is One Amazing Thing Hooked Among Times...
"My Indentity Is One Amazing Thing Hooked Among Times...." - My identity(her id card),  One Amazing Thing(book), Hooked(the clip at the top), Times(watch)! Four v unrelated things put together to form a v powerful sentence!!

N with this I sign off the "May photo a day contest"!! Phew.....

The tool for....

... Mainstreaming the marginalized gender officially!

I was pleasantly surprised to see the option of "Transgender" under the "Gender" column in UID(Aadhaar) form! Maybe the first step in acceting them as a part of our society...

Linking this to May Photo a day contest for the prompt "tool"(what this form is of course the tool for data collection of UID ;) )

PS: This post is brainchild of Sabs.


A curio my MIL picked for us on her hol somewhere ... Am sure she chose this cause it reminded her of us ;)

Linking to may contest a day Grrrr prompt - kiss

What am I doing now

..... Gloating that one of my fav authors - Chitra Banerjee Divakarunni - commented(on FB) that my review on her latest book is " Thank you Meena--very nice review." :-D. Here, see see  :-D

Linking this to May photo a day for the prompt - "What am I doing now"

Cant Live without...

... Well on top of my mind was the usual suspects - Family-Friends, books, good food n blah! But as I hv already given you a overdose of this, I will take inspiration from Pixies Idea n thus it is...

Now its so true - With my power hovering in range of -3.5 the first thing I literally do on waking up is don my pair of specs :). The one incident specs always brings to mind is this ;)

Fave thing to do on Sunday....

..... is read the "Sunday Mag" section in leisure!

 I personally feel that the mag section of DNA is much beta than TOI.... They have some interesting, well researched topics than the run of mill topics TOI carries. The one n pic(click to zoom) is of a few current gen English men - ladies trying to dig up their forefathers stories who were in India in early 20th century.

N yes, in our house of two(me n hubs) we subscribe two newspapers(TOI, DNA) just to avoid the morn bickering over who gets to read the paper first!

Linking this to May Photo a day challenge for the prompt "Fave thing to do on Sunday"


That's the quintessential "Us" monkeying around at the face of all lemons life hands us .....


Linking this to May pic a day contest for the prompt "Us"

Go, Follow your heart!

"Go, Follow your heart" is what I told these earnest young people! This was a part of discussion where people from diff industries were invited to address a group of class 12 students on opportunities in their resp sectors!

Pic Courtesy Sabs!

The million dollar question that few of them had was the same I had a good 13 years  back - "My grades will get me into a good engineering college - but err my heart lies in cooking-arts-journalism.What do I do?". N no prizes for guessing what most parents want their child to opt for....

 I am a practical person - I had chosen engineering n I don't regret it. But at hindsight maybe I wold hv been happier(thou not so financially successful) doing what my heart wanted me to. Phenomenon is a beta example - after all his engineering n masters in automobile(more at his parents insistence), today he dabs in a carer of marketing n communications n is at his happiest when he gets to dons the hat of a chef!

 So "GO follow your heart"

Linking this to May photo a contest for the prompt "Go"!

A PJ Party...

... the effects of which continues to the next day morn.....

Me n my niece - pic courtesy Sabs!
Linking this to May photo a day challenge for the prompt - PJ

Keep the 'Change"!

.... N that's exactly what hubbs n sabs are upto in this pic...

Look closely ~~ they are exchanging notes on their respective coin collections n even bartering a few! Now now how many of u know people who in their 30s still harbor these hobbies!! Here's BTW a deco of sabs coin collection... I will save hubbs for another day, another contest!

Linking this to may Photo a day contest for the prompt 'Change'

Save Begur Lake!

To be honest, I am not one of the v socially conscious types - so v rarely will u see me posting about social issues. Now approximately 1-2 kms away from my apt is this huge natural lake - Begur Lake. But with the surrounds being hardly developed, I would give it a cursory glance when we happen to take that road.

Before - Complete with Coracle; Image courtesy FB Begur lake page

Imagine my surprise when a couple of weeks back, we drive along the road only to see the lake completely parched n dried! Supposedly a Lotta unmindful draining of water by Private tankers resulted in this. The residents around the area have now waken up and are trying their best to restore it ~~ Only time will tell if we can undo the damage You can read more about it here.

(After)No more water for the Coracle to move on.. Pic courtesy Begur Lake FB Page!

This coupled with the dire water shortage I have been seeing around means that one thing I really have started caring about is "Water"! N errr cause I complicated the contest for myself  by promising to put only pics I clicked - here is a pic (for the sake of it)

Water water everywhere - But not a drop to drink!
Linking this to May Photo Challenge for the prompt "I care about this"

At the Radhi-Waala....

Jus when u feel that there is too much 'commercialization' happening around, comes along a friend who will rummage the Radhi-waala n dig out some lovely discarded books! Her finds in this dingy basement shop(n tht explains the poor pic quality) have included 'The Complete Works of Khalil Gibran', 'World Is Flat', 'Life of Pi', 'Connect The Dots', 'India Unbound' ........

 Maybe she's one of those shining lights who reaffirms my faith in the existence of a non-materialist world in a largely 'monetary' world.

Linking this to May Photo A Day Contest for the tag Light(I know I am incorrigible!)

My Fav View...

... currently has to be this!

Simply cause its my first view of a sea port! Clicked @Malpe.

Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt - "My Fav View"

Book Review: Oleander Girl by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

I have been wanting to get my hands on the latest book by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni - "Oleander Girl" from the time I heard of its release. This has been on my to-be-picked-soon list since then. But I forget that I hv a lovely Santa Claus in my sister n guess what landed in my house early this week :-). Haa the bliss of having somebody who will make ur every wish come true(Now only if everything in life was so simple).

Maybe one advantage of reading a book pretty soon after its published is that you are not bogged down by expectations and so enjoy it to the fullest.

Linking this to May Photo A Day challenge for the prompt "Want"!

Here is my review of the book....

Korobi orphaned at bitth, is the apple of eyes of her old grandparents. She lives a idealistic life in a sprawling ancient house in heart of kolkota. Jus outa her teens, a well to do young dashing businessman falls head over heels in love with her and it seems as if her life is set to bloom....

But tragedy strikes in the form of her grandfathers death n soon hidden secrets tumble out making Korobi question her parents identity! From there the plot diverges into Korobis struggle to find her fathers real identity....

The storyline keeps you hooked - its a book I finished over the weekend! The description is so vivid - it brings to life the old palatial bungalows of Kolkota complete with the temple, the smells of a bengali kitchen, the old patriarchy - hindu grandfather, the lives of struggling Indians n the grad students in the US.......

A good easy read!

The First Glimpse of the season....

I realize, I hvnt shared the pic of 'Vishu Kani' this year! Heres a glimpse of it...

Now wondering how this links up to the prompt of the day "Season"? Cause "Vishu" is the spring festival of Kerala - This occasion signifies the sun's transit into the Meda Raasi (first zodiac sign) according to Indian astrological calculations, and represents the vernal equinox(ref Wiki). It marks the beginning of Malayalam calendar. N u start the year with a glimpse of "Vishu Kani"....

Linking this to May Photo a day contest - for the prompt "seasons"

In my mailbox ...

Today in our mailbox was a courier with the latest Jeffery Archer book "Best Kept Secret" autographed by the author! This parcel was for Phenomenon  - a prize for winning a local radio quiz competition :)

The pics have been clicked by urs truly but collage is  courtesy Sabs :)
 This is part of May photo a day contest for the prompt "mailbox"

7 o’clock....

N 7 o’clock it is!

Hv been looking for sometime to share this Cuckoo clock at my house! I hv been wanting to own one from the time I heard of the uniqueness of these clocks(v sheepishly lemme add that I knew of this tidbit only seven years back!)

This was gifted by a fav cousin who lugged it all the way from Germany to UK to Dubai to Kerala n then to Bangalore for yours truly :-). N knowing how efficient I n hubbs are he decided to get us battery-run one as against the traditional mechanical ones ;).

Linking this to May Photo A Day challenge for the prompt "7 o’clock"!

All I Need is.......

......Will let the pic do the talking!

This curio by the way was bought by Sabs cause supposedly the stance of this lady reminded her of me! Nee it doesn't represent maternal love or such jazz ... her interpretation of the expression  is "of a mother who is bored lugging around the baby n cant wait fro him-her to grow up" :-O Now u tell em with friends like this, who needs enemies ;)

Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt - Need!


Err now am no photographer - so shooting a fab sunrise-sunset pic is almost outa question! Now with the added self-imposed complexity of posting "only pics  clicked by me" thru the contest will mean that you have to settle for this rather sub-standard pic :(

Sunsets is when a beach comes truly Alive!

Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt - Sunrise-sunset

On Mothers Day......

sharing my MILs FB Status from a few days back..

My 87 year old mother had an endoscopy and a laproscopy done on alternate days for removing gall bladder stones and stones in her small intestine.Happy she is fine.
The first thing she asked me when she gained consciousness was whether I had had my lunch while she had not eaten or drank anything since tuesday night 11 o'clock and supposed to take liquid diet only at 7pm wednesday.

In hospital with her from 30th april, mayb till sunday 12th may.

This status - unwittingly thou - does capture the spirit of motherhood - of placing ones child's needs before self . Here is to most selfless love ever!

Here's a pic of Hubbs grandmom. She's back home today-  hale n hearty. Hubbs must have got his passion for cooking from her - at this age of 87 she still follows cookery shows, shoots letters to hosts of these shows  n even rustles up dishes shown on them!! Her mutton curry n chutney powder are stuff of lore... a trip to Chennai isn't complete till we lug back all sorts of assorted masalas homemade by her.Fingers crossed that she is soon to her usual self

Look at tht long mane even at 80+
Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt "Mother"

PS: Errr this pic was clicked by Hubbs ~~ hopefully the only exception to posting my pics thru this contest

Smile with me.......

... as with this post I finish the 500th post in my blog :). Here is something yummm to make the celebrations complete....

Now this was baked by hubbs to bring in my sisters Anniversary! Loooks yummmm doesnt it :). So here is the catch - the cake 'sunk' in as soon as it was out of the oven but we aint the ones who gets discouraged by these minor details. So with a v calm elan, the ugly depression bang in the center of the cake was filled with 'Gems' n lo ;)

Speaking of smiles, here is a pic that sure brings a smile to my face  - the simple pleasures of childhood....

Sabs Says "Similar yet different"!

 Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt "Smile"

The star(s) of the day...

Pic Courtesy Sabs!
My sis celebrated her first marriage anniversary yesterday n here am still wondering when did my litt sis grow up so much ;). Here is wishing both of many many many happy year n  happier memories.......

Linking this to May Photo a Day challenge for the prompt - "Star".

Snack on a .......

A typical weekday after-work travel home involves me braving public transport half the way before being picked up my hubbs. There is a small cycle vendor around that corner who dishes up Bhel-puri, sev-puri n similar stuff - so the daily ritual involves that whoever among us reaches early, gets the snack-of-the-day packed n ready to eat :). My two fav snacks that this vendor rustles up with perfection are

*** Nippat Masala - 'Kaara Jaasthi' for hubbs N 'Swalpa Sweet' for yours truly!

*** Boti Masala

*** Nippattu Masala - You can read about Nippattu here
***  'Kaara Jaasthi'  - Extra spicy
***  'Swalpa Sweet'-  Little Sweet
*** Boti - Long yellow Fryums

Linking this to May Photo A Day Challenge for the prompt - 'snacks'!

Living on the edge....

.. Hubbs gives a new meaning to it by indulging in his hobby of 'Knife Collection'. Here have a decko of Knives in all sizes n shapes that he has collected till date....

This I know is a v modest collection - but yea its a start! The longest one (err should i call it a sword) was picked from around Amristar golden temple n then lugged around to Chennai, Hyderabad before reaching bangalore(Can u imagine the security checks he must have had to pass!)! The eagle shaped one is a gift from his mom on his bday. In the last row, the right most one is from Africa while the other two are "Kukri" from North-east(commonly carried around by the Nepali Gurkhas) picked while on a hol there!

So which of the lot did u like the most?

Linking this to May photo a day challenge for the prompt - shapes

Forty Rules of Love - Book Review

This is a book am v skeptical to do a review cause I know I can't do it justice. So let's get this straight - I absolutely loved this book. This is one of the books I think all of us should read once in a life time. But errr I believe we appreciate a book of this genre more with our age (Am v positive that I would hv flipped thru this book 5 years back wondering what the hue-n-cry is about :))

The book starts off with the story of Ella - a forty something lady living in suburbs of the US who disillusioned with her own marriage starts a clandestine 'affair' with the author of a book she's reviewing -  a photographer travelling across the world! The  book happens to revovle around the story of Rumi- Shams Tabrizi....

Rumi is a profound  preacher, a well respected personality in the society but has lead a cushioned life and doesnt comprehend the life of a of a leper - a prostitute or what it means to live in poverty - Life for him was a simple black-n-white rule book. On other side, you have Shams Tabrizi a wandering dervish who doesn't abide by any rules of society n embraces a prostitute - a scholar with equal gusto! The story revolves around how Shams Tabrizi influences Rumi n from this "spiritual" bond is born the Rumi as we know him today - a Sufi mystic and poet whose verses on love has withstood the test of time!

The entire book keeps oscillating between the   story of Ella n the story of 'Rumi - Shams Tabrizi. The  book has been handled so well that these stories actually end up complimenting each other. Each story so delicately handled that there are times you literally hold your breath waiting for the plot to unfold......

Weaved thru these two stories is the forty rules of love - each a gem. Here is a link I googled up that has these 40 gems compiled together....

A must read as per me.....

Linkint this to May Photo a day challenge for the prompt "Something with F"("Forty rules of Love" does begin with F rt :-P)


This must be a topic that I really broke my head most on! Only later did it strike me to use this big collection shells I have.......

U C one souvenir I try n collect from every beach - river side I frequent are shells - river stones. So in here I have shells n stones from Indian Ocean to Bay of Bengal to Arabian sea (Pondicherry, Rameswaram, Kerala, Malpe Beach, Murdeshwara, Vengurla near Swantwadi in Maharashtra, Trincomalee in Srilanka) n from the river banks of Krishna, Tungabadra Cauvery, Kunti River........


This is for the prompt "Broken"(Broken Shells) as a part of May Photo a Day Challenge

Rules Of Kitchen!

I like the 5th rule the best ;) Clicked at a Hotel Management Institute in Bangalore.

Linking this to the prompt of "Paper" as part of May Photo a day challenge!

In My Cup!

Off late my fav beverage is Lemon - honey tea(or suleimani as it's called in Malayalam)! Sourness of lemon with the sweetness of honey ...The  first perfect glass of this was devoured at Shanthi Guest House in Hampi n now the love affair continues :) Afterall as the lead actor in mal movie "Ustadhotel" says "every Suleimani needs a bit of mohabbat in it" ;)

Linking this to Day 4 prompt of "In My Cup" as a part of May Photo A Day Challenge!

This is really Good!

My first  smart Phone courtesy my lit sis :-D. N am in love with it.... yeaaaaa! I was one of those relics who  lived in stone era firmly believing that phone is to be used only for making calls- sending SMS!

But today am a convert - the luxury of internet on the go ensures I don hv a  dull moment any longer - be it a boring  meeting at work(:-P) or long waits at the doc\banks! The best thing I love abt it is the ease of clicking a pic n uploading it on FB, Mail, blog... No more hassles of carrying the cable, downloading it to comp n then uploading it!!

 But err this can be a bane in disguise huh ... the impulse to reach out n check mail\FB Update each time the mobile beeps even if its late in the night :-/.

Linking this to Day 3 prompt of "This is really good" as a part of May photo a day challenge

Morning Ritual.....

On a regular weekday I n hubbs must be the laziest couple around! We snooze n cuddle in until the nth moment - exercise doesn't even figure in our agenda! But come vacation, we done a diff hat altogether... we will be one of the first ones to jump out of bed n go for a loongggggg stroll.

The crsp morning fresh air, the almost stretch of land-park-beach is all the enticement I need! For hubbs its the prospect of indulging in his photography! Haa n morning cuppa in one of those street side stalls have a taste of their own .......

Imagine the entire stretch of beach to urself!

This is my post for Day 2 prompt "Morning Ritual" as a part of May Photo A Day: A challenge that will change your life.

Something I bought....

......... A gift for a little gal celebrating her sixth b'day :). Here is wishing the little impish darling many many years of monkeying around n happiness ... Muah !

Of course goes without saying that she is bestowed with Barbie :)

Err a comment I keep hearing often is why Pink for gals? Why Barbie for gals? I ask you, why not? Pink is just a color ala red or blue or green.  Barbie is just a doll ala Power Rangers or superman! Yea I know pink-for-a-gal, Barbie-for-a-gal are stereotypes - but errr the 6 year old doesn't know it - for her pink just happens to be her favorite color n Barbie her favorite doll.  So pink Barbie its for her! Its just another fancy that a kid has which will pass away with time.

N with this I kick start the May Photo a day challenge - Yea I must be nuts to take two consecutive challenge! N just to add to the madness, I have promised to use only pics I have clicked(n not hubbs) :-0