Friday, September 27, 2013

Oh God! Why Me?

It was 12.30 in the noon and my friend and I ran frantically between one bus to another bus to get a seat aboard some decent A/C bus to take me to Chennai. I had finished my TOEFL exam in Bangalore and had spent an extra day in Bangalore thereby loosing my reservation on train and the only way to get back seemed to be on road. Which, of course was completely booked. We finally got a set on a Karnataka State Transportation bus which I think was the cheapest fare I had traveled in my entire life between Bangalore and Chennai. And I have done that trip a million times.

My friend who dropped me in the bus was hesitant and asked me many times if I could postpone my ticket for a couple of days. I wished I could but I had to be in Chennai that night so I could take my GRE exam the following day. I walked inside the bus dreading the journey but to my surprise I saw this girl who was my brother's classmate's cousin. We had met at a party and for some odd reason, we knew her parents well and her own brother was my junior in college. The minute I sat down next to her she said, "please don't tell my dad or brother or my cousin that you saw me on this bus." I promised her wondering what her secret was. Which I eventually found out through another friend. At least I had nothing to hide so I saw down feeling a bit better that I had company with me on a bus which had maybe another woman on board.

We chatted a while before each of us got absorbed in our silence, she was not like my best friend or very close to me. We obviously lived different lives, one in which I told my parents everything, well almost and never traveled away from home without informing my family. The journey seemed painless and we assumed that we would reach home early before sunset and I started to relax. I told myself that this was not as bad as it seemed and for Rs.30 I could not have asked for more.

When we got close to Tamilnadu-Karnataka (Hosur) border we heard a lot of noise outside and the bus came to a sudden halt. I did not think it was much to worry for a few seconds before a handful of men walked into the bus with such propriety you would think they owned the bus. They had heavy logs of wood in their hand and the famous South-Indian Veecharuva (sickle). They walked into the bus looking high and low and screaming, "if you are in here come out, you are not going to escape alive." They walked past us and then stopped by us for a few seconds, we were the only two young girls in the entire bus. The two of us bent down looking at our bags intently and did not dare look up till the bus moved again. I think my legs were jelly and my stomach was running at a higher rate than my heart. My friend and I held hands and did not let go for a few minutes. 

The entire bus heaved a sigh of relief but I can bet no one would have come to save us had they wanted to walk away with us. Phew! Thank God! 

When we got to Chennai, my friend reminded me one more time not to tell her family about seeing me. I don't think I met her after that day but I still remember the events so clearly...of course things happened in slow motion freaking the daylights out of me...so much for a non-exciting Rs.30 travel day!


I can imagine to a certain extent what each of them might have gone through. Fear is the same when you feel overpowered and unsafe in any situation. It takes a lot for anyone to put aside their life and stand up for anyone else. 

Anyways...thought I will share!

Love
ART

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Run and Fun

This past weekend was hectic beyond words. A friend was visiting from New Jersey and my BFF and I were doing a run. Another college buddy of mine also decided that he would join us and the three of us were promptly 30 seconds before the race started. Of course, this was not a race by any means for us because we were the last to start among the 1000 that were there but the good news is we finished somewhere in the middle. It was such a pain finding parking and the walk to the race was so far. Three years ago when we had done this same run it was not half as crowded.

We finished the run, tried to taste some beer which was uber-bitter, so we ate some breakfast and headed home. At home friends, G and I played boat loads of ping-pong and then took Babs back to the Oktoberfest. She did some rides, we blew up some cash, and got back home. We got ready and once again took Babs, dropped her off at a play date with friend and headed Oktoberfest once again. If you are keeping count, that is third time in one day...

Met a whole group of friends there, hung out, and then went over to another friend's house for after party with the kids. By the time Babs was sleeping it was 2.00am and by the time I went to sleep it was half past two...what a day!

The next couple of days...I limped around with pain in everything leg!

Go Oktoberfest...hopefully we will run every year!!!

love
ART

Monday, September 16, 2013

Aashiqui-2 - Hindi Movie Review

So someone who understands alcoholic should give me insight into what this movie is actually all about. I saw this movie Friday night and woke up Saturday morning seething in anger. What a waste of time, I had seen a movie that had no point. Pointless. Wasted wasted wasted!

I am pretty sure my anger is directed towards the director. Why would you make a movie that had no point? Why glorify drunk driving? Why show a drunk causing an accident on such a light note? Argh!

Anyways, the hero, RJ (Aditya Roy Kapoor) is an acclaimed singer who has lost interest in singing. He drives into Arohi (Shraddha) who sings at a bar to make a living. On hearing her voice and commitment he wants to make her his protege. Off, he swoops her back to Mumbai to make her into a famous singer...but our man is lost to the liquid love. They fall in love with each other but he refuses to sacrifice his drinking habit to save their love and her career. He falls into the throes of jealousy, begs for help, relapses into his old days. The movies runs pacelessly, while you are hoping that something good will come out of this mindless love.

I understand why the girl loves him, he got her out of poverty, gave her a career, etc. etc...but he is an alcoholic refusing to change. He is a mindless alcoholic. And then the movie ends...abrupt...I don't want to give away the story...but it is blah.

The songs are amazing. I loved every song but them I can hear even on the radio, why waste 2.5 hours watching mindless almost predictable story? For a moment when the movie started, I saw hope, I wrongfully assumed that he had a past love story which went sour making him bitter with life. Alas, no such hope, he is an alcoholic for the sake of being one...apparently such people exist. Oh well!

If you have absolutely nothing to do...still, avoid this movie.


Friday, September 13, 2013

Ghanana Ghanana....and no Rain!

Each day I look at my dying yard, at my red oak that is almost no more. I think of ways to revive it and I cannot find many. With the strict watering rules, I try to hose them down at least twice a week because I would definitely at least want to save the tree...and then of course there is the natural way of doing it in some parts of the world..."Rain."

Well, reality check, I live in Dallas...could almost qualify for a desert...we get thunderstorms...not like in India where we get monsoons when the whole city/district/state is flooded for three weeks straight. Here it rains, pours, lightning, thunders, and then storms out too as soon as it came.

On Wednesday, I saw rain clouds forming over my head as I was driving home. I got hopeful, I know I am fifty miles away and it possibly wont rain at all in my part of the metroplex but I prayed and sang..."Ghanan Ghanan....in my head...I saw all the right stuff, bijli (lightning), kale megha (black clouds), and even heard the Ghanan (thunder)...and the water came down pouring and cleaning my car. I was so happy...I called husband to rejoice with him. He stepped out and confirmed that the land outside our house was still parched, no clouds, and not a sign of rain...the tempo of the song slowed to the sad ending of the song in the movie in my head...
----------------------------------------
This happens every time. A few weeks ago, I was going to meet Girl Friend for dinner. She called and said, it is pouring over here...I popped out, the clouds seemed ominous...husband and daughter were sprawled out on the deck chairs taking a nap after a swim...I told them about the rains, hushed them in when husband said, "It is not going to rain here, you go ahead."

Got to the restaurant, the clouds were very dark still...but no rain, waited outside for friends, and still no rain. Friend came in after ten minutes and all the clouds were gone...no rain again at my house! Dang it!

----------------------------------------
Husband goes to NJ and visits my brother. He goes house hunting with my brother and calls me and tells, "with my limited knowledge I could see that houses in NJ do not have foundation issues."

Heck yeah! It friggin' rains there! Unlike Dallas!!! So I reminded him gently, "They have basement problems."

Husband said, "Well, at least they have a basement!"
----------------------------------------
Anyways, I guess for now, I am going to pray the red oak survives and that our neighborhood gets lashed with some good rain which does not bring with it other perils like tornadoes and such...

Until, then I will do an Amir Khan watching for rains and keep saying, "Dugna Laagan dena padega."

Love
Dry ART


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Oop!

Ya...just Oop!...don's ask me why...it is that kind of a day today...

The past three days I have been going into the coughing bout...where I cough for 15 minutes and the rest of the day passes by like I never coughed...so far had been happening only at work during day...specially after boss sir asks me a question. He assures me that I will live and that I should let it the cough wind its way down...

But last night...oh it was a different story. I coughed. I coughed and I coughed and I really thought the roof will come down...thankfully it did not...I took NyQuil at 11 to save me some chest pain. I was watching TV and suddenly felt my eyes get heavy, I laid down in the sofa, then a small voice said, "go and sleep on the bed, else you will remain here till morning." I pulled myself up, set up the night stand with water, took contacts off, and set up Babs morning stuff and snuck into bed forever...er...until 6.15am. I was already late by 15 minutes.

I sat in the car with a muffin, telling myself that eating a muffin will make me wake up. I think it made me fat and not awake. I really have no recollection how I got to work. I sat in the parking and took a ten minute nap and got up to work with sticky muffin hands.

G did a "I told you not to take NyQuil so late in the night," song. I sneered at him over the phone. He reminded me, "Coffee!" I said, "yes, going right now, Aja Aja, Fighting."

I sat back in my chair...wondering, "shit, still so sleepy." Cough, Cough, Cough, and it continues....

Love
Coughing ART

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Press the Post Button Already!

I have three posts written and waiting to be published...sensitive touchy topics...so I being me decided to let it rot in the box. One of these days they will come out and live to tell a story...literally...

Anyways, life is moving so fast right now that the only way for me to keep track of what went past me is through my blog and that seems pretty empty to me,which means that at the end of the year...there will be no end of the year post...which means blah.

Babs is now in "big school." I don't know how that happened but what seemed to be a big deal fizzled out. I thought I would be the mom that would cry buckets, and the mom that would worry about every random thing. I surprised myself. I bought her supplies the day before school. I dropped her off, got a bit moisty eyes en route but when we got there I was just excited by the whole drama of School. Babs got to her class, waved at her friend and found her name and sat down in her chair. She quickly picked up the piece of paper and crayons and started to sketch something. I tried to take pics with her, she obliged but shooed me away when I kept trying to get the perfect pic. I said bye three times to her, the third time was when I stood at the door, she was busy sketching with her back to me, she waved me away without even turning back to look at me. Good sign.

In other news, we have realized that our home is a living thing just like us...needs love, attention (more than I ever fathomed), care, gentle loving whispers, etc...or things literally die on you...like the grass in our front yard, or the red oak tree...which for the record I am trying to revive. We are also spending a fortune to get our pool flag stone re-laid, so no one standing around the pool fall inside involuntarily, and we bought our own lawn mower...so G is busy one evening every week, while Babs and I stand and supervise. I help with the trimmer but the mower is way too powerful for me to operate.

Oh! and yes! the Ping-Pong table...if you know me, you know that I love racket games...Tennis, Baddie, TT. I grew up with those...I used to play a lot when I was in Trichy and then when I moved to Chennai, I lost touch with all of them. Fortunately when we moved into our apartment during the last three years of college, we had TT in our basement. I again spent hours playing and eventually played for my college. I made some amazing friends and we traveled together making memories...So when our table arrived, all I could think was my friends and the stories...of course G and I spend at least 20 minutes a day playing and Babs and I play for about 10 every day. She is getting better each day...Loving the new memories we are making with the table.

Body image issues...a new thing I keep hearing again and again from parents. I hear it from parents who use excessive make up...they do not want their kids to have that particular issue...really? So you have the problem, that is alright, but your kid should want to go au-natural and feel comfy in her skin? lol, you guys crack me up. I want to write a post about this soon...so keep watching here...

And of course, the media room...G got me into watching Super Hero movies...seen Hulk, Spidey, and IronMan...in love with Iron Man...omg! Seeing that movie gave me the same rush I get when I see Rajni movie...so much fun! Felt like a little kid all over again.

And Babs, you are all so grown up when you beg to be dropped off at school door after the first day, you are already embarrassed of your parents...brilliant...you say the cutest things and it is always so nice to see you in the evening all smiles and happy. Your dad spoils you by letting you eat ice cream every evening after he gets you...oh...I could go on...well separate post of the fun stuff you have done in the past few weeks...

Love
ART