Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Yours truly is judgemental

Taking up the Tag from Poppins

I judge people who proudly announce the hours spent at work. Since when did the quantity of time decide quality of work? Also staying long hours in office does not mean, a lot of work got done.
I judge people who cannot appreciate good food. Anyone who says, taste does not matter to them is basically dieting. (that’s’ my opinion)
I judge people who put on lots of make up. Makes me think that they have bad features they are trying hard to hide.
I judge people who cannot appreciate music. Don’t like a particular kind of music … I can understand that … don’t like music … now how can you not???
I judge parents who are loud.
I judge parents who smoke / drink alcohol in the presence of kids.
I judge people who don’t like their family.
I judge people who are unclean / unkempt.
I judge people who defend their choice all time. I mean discussing about it once in a while, I have no problem … but having to mention their choice all the time, sorry
I judge people who don’t like their home town.

My points above may seem irrational … but hey, this post is about being judgmental… be it good or bad!

Somewhere over the rainbow ...

I have always looked forward to Cantaloupe's birthday party. This year was no exception. The party preparations started about 3 weeks back ... when I say preparations, it means, narrowing the guest list. This time, it was not as hard as it normally is. Narrowing the list was easy, but narrowing the evite invitation proved much harder. If the foreground color suited me, the background was not going with it ... when these two matched the main image would be a sore thumb. After about 3 days of exhaustive searches, finally decided on a template.
My sister helped me with this ... thank you very much ! The evite was sent out and within the first 2 days, there was no more "Declined responses" and hardly any "accepted responses". I began to doubt if we had to reconsider the party date. I called a couple of friends, to be told that they had been considering other plans for that particular saturday, but were yet to make a decision. I was nervous if the guests would make it or not ... after all the party was for Cantaloupe and if her friends did not come, that would be no good for her. Besides, the idea of having the party in the park was for the kids to have fun. My parents volunteered to cook for the guests ... I tried to persuade them to not stress themselves too hard ... but they were firm. The idea of owning a major responsibility of their only grand daughter's birthday party, seem to brighten their spirits. After much debate the menu was decided .... Samosas, Sprouted beans salad, Kadamba (rice item), Raita, curd rice, Mysore Pak (sweet), Chips, Fruits (watermelon and pine apple), cucumber salad and of course some cool juice to beat the sun.

I was sure the party would have a theme ... the decision was made that it was going to be a "RainBow" party. Now, we had to come up with games, decorations, cutlery etc to reflect the theme.
Some of things we did were in accordance to the theme:
1. Painted huge rainbows on banners and worded them appropriately. Actually we modified the "Wizard of Oz" song to suit our theme. But it was perfect for our setting. We tied these to all the trees around the park picnic area.

2. My dad made cute miniature rainbows with card board and we used it as table decoration.

3. Our cutlery was color co-ordinated. The plates were green, cake cups were red, paper napkins were deep yellow, spoons were violet, the table cloth was pale yellow. We arranged it in the form of a semi circular, and it certainly went with our theme.

4. Balloons in all colors of the rainbow were tied to the picnic area.

5. We made "Thank You" cards of foam in all colors. Decorated them with little star sparklers. These cards were given to the kids during the party along with foam stickers, so they could decorate their own cards. The excitement in making their own little projects was so evident ... a lot of parents were thrilled to see their excited kids and appreciated this idea of ours.

6. For the return gifts, instead of the regular bags, I opted for colored boxes. The colored boxed when arranged on the table looked so cute to say the least.

7. I bought 7 little plastic boxes in all colors of the rainbow, filled it up with candies and hid them. The parents and kids had fun galore looking for these "Treasures". I was myself surprised with the clues I had come up with for the treasure hunt.

8. Since the party was going to be in the park, we purchased Visors, instead of the regular birthday caps. Again, the visors were carefully chosen to reflect the colors of the rainbow.

9. Of course, it was a "Rainbow" cake... rather a strawberry cake with Rainbow icing.

10. The best idea (according to me) was the welcome necklace the kids good. We had made fruit loop necklaces with a Candy serving as "Pendant". The colored fruit loops sure went with our theme, and kids snacked on it as they played along in the swings / slides etc

At the end of the party, I felt so satisfied and Cantaloupe was thrilled to bits.

Indian writings

It is a tag season for sure … everyone seems to be writing on some tag or the other.
I dreaded taking up one tag though … but Noon has tagged me and I don’t want to play spoil sport …

To begin with I’d like to admit that I am not a books person … there, I said it … I haven’t read as many books as many of the others have and my choice of literature may appear very different from many others … but hey I enjoy it and it doesn’t bother me if others don’t like my choice.

1. My top pick is undoubtedly Vishnusharma’s “Panchatantra”. The simple stories with intriguing morals never fail to amaze me. What a brilliant writer Vishnusharma had to be to convey morals baring age groups with such simple stories … truly amazing.

2. One of my other favorite books have to be “Amar Chitra Katha” series … I got introduced to these at a tender age and ever since I just got hooked. For some time I had changed loyaltied to Tinkle … but nothing to beat Amar chitra Katha

3. R K Narayan: Whether it is swamy and his friends, The talkative man or The English teacher … all of them one thing in common: relatable characters, simple language and attention to detail. Is there anyone who doesn’t like his writing. (on a side note: Shankar Nag’s Malgudi days on Doordarshan was a masterpiece too … )

4. Matadana by S L Byrappa: One complicated story told in the most fascinating matter. There are several other novels by Byrappa which strike a chord … but Matadana stands out among them all.

5. Dashakumaracharita by Dandi : OK this one, I have really not read all the stories … but the ones I have are truly a delight. The nuances of grammer, the humor, the style … Sanskrit is pure magic.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Embarrassing incidents

Incident 1: This happened sometime back when Cantaloupe was about 18 months. We were traveling from Florida to California. Being less than 2 years, she did not require a ticket to be purchased. So she was switching between mine and BP’s laps. I sat by the window and BP had the middle seat and a young American male in his early twenties sat beside BP. Cantaloupe’s constant “Why’s / How’s/ where’s” had irritated this guy quite a bit … he had hoped to catch on some sleep which was not going to happen so easily. Book reading, Barney viewing on laptop was all done in the first 2 hrs of our flight and we still had 3 more hours to fly. Just then Cantaloupe pointed to this guy’s arms and said “Why has he scribbled all over his arms?” BP and I looked at the person’s arms and indeed it was tattooed all over … we tried hard to control our laughter. But our co-passenger had got the message.

Incident 2: This is a more recent incident. Cantaloupe has a new fascination … as soon as she sees a baby, she has to guess if it is a boy or a girl. It started out with babies and has extended to everyone. One of the differentiating factors we have told her is “Girls have pierced ears while boys don’t”. I know these days, the ear piercing thing is definitely not a differentiating factor … but we still like to live in the olden days and hey, it’s a convenient explanation to Cantaloupe. We had few guests home and one of them had his ears pierced. Cantaloupe innocently asked “He is a boy … why has he got his ears pierced?”

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Distant engagement ....

Wow … so many of you have interesting stories to share about your engagement … I read Moppets, Poppins and Pixie
Mine sure is a rare story of sorts …

I was working in an IT company in India soon after graduating. I lived with my uncle’s family during that period. One bright morning, my uncle walked to me casually and said “RP would call / email me in the next 2-3 days and I talk to him”. I knew that my parents were on the look out for a suitable match for me, though I had no intensions of settling on Marital bliss. I didn’t say anything to my uncle. The first thing I wanted to do was call my parents and tell them, I didn’t want to talk to anyone. I reached office and almost forgot about this call and got deeply involved in some work. Around lunch time, I got an email from BP … now wait a minute … didn’t my uncle mention about someone RP who would contact me this morning … but this email was from BP … who was this person ! I was confused … I called up my mom immediately and told her about this mail. She said the person’s name was indeed BP and not RP and insisted I reply back. Though very hesitant, I replied back … you know the general “Hello … “ kinda email. Within secs I got another mail from BP asking for my phone number. I replied him back with my number. In less than a min, my phone rang and I was talking to BP. I swear I had never felt as comfortable talking to a stranger. People who know me vouch for the fact that, I take my time before I open up to strangers … but this time, I was completely shocked myself. Our first phone conversation lasted for about 45 mins and we talked about our hobbies, our family etc. Before he disconnected, BP took my parent’s number. After sometime, I got a call from my mom saying BP had called her … but she was too shy to talk to him and could just manage to give my father’s office number and not say anything much. Of course, BP had called my father and talked to him. I truly appreciated his sensitive gesture. This happened Sep 7th 2000. I can never forget this Thursday!! BP called me on Friday around noon and we continued to talk. He then mentioned that I meet his parents over the weekend.
So my family met his family on Saturday and instantly “approved” me as their son’s bride J I couldn’t believe the pace at which the events were unfolding … my parents were to visit BP’s house in order to fix an auspicious date for the marriage. As is the custom, I was not going with them for the discussion, so I decided to come to office … hoping that BP would call me J I met Poppins on the office bus, who was by then a regular at coming to office over the weekends and shared the news with her.
All I remember I did for the next few days was to come to office and eagerly open my mail box expecting to see something from BP, wait for his phone call around 11:00 and talk endlessly. Get back home dreaming about wonderful things … hey … did I mention, BP was in the US at this time J

We had a traditional engagement, a month later…. How much I missed him that day! (for those who are laughing their hearts out about the engagement without the guy … I am told that in the olden days, the groom was never part of the traditional hindu engagement ceremony. It was a ritual performed to decide the date of the wedding in the presence of a large gathering… some sort of assurance I’d like to believe, that the groom and bride to be were committed) As the wedding day got closer, the discussions grew deeper … and finally the day arrived ! I was going to meet BP for the first time in my life … and hold your breadth, we were getting married after 5 days

As luck would have it, his flight got delayed and the wait at the airport seemed endless … and finally he arrived ! I have never heard my heart beat faster … and there he was, my darling BP, just the way I had imagined him to be. (we had exchanged only 2 photographs of ours so far) It took me less than a minute to spot him in the airport amidst all the crowd. But it was a wonderful experience !
We got married 5 days later and have been enjoying marital bliss since … even today, when I think back what prompted me to answer back his first email … I have no answer. But hey, I have no complaints that I did answer !!!

Monday, July 9, 2007

Two weeks back we were invited to our neighbour’s house for a house warming gathering. They had bought the house couple of months back and have settled in the place for about 4 months now. So, when they said, house warming, I was a little surprised. May be they wanted to settle down before they had friends over and this was their way of sharing their happiness with friends … even though a little late.
I had to mention that they had settled 4 months back, because they have a daughter almost a year older than Cantaloupe. Cantaloupe has always enjoyed playing with older kids. I thought the neighbors’ kid “S” would be a good playmate for her. I have had them a couple of times at my house... and I can have a decent conversation with S parents … Cantaloupe is comfortable playing with S without much parent involvement.
OK, back to the house warming story. We were invited to be there by around 11:00am. So we went there around the same time. The host couple were busy doing the “Sathyanarayan Pooja”. There were around 7-8 adults in the living room. ( we did not know any of them). We settled down in one of the corners … Cantaloupes’ little eyes started looking for S. After about 15min, she asked where S was. She had been asking about S ever since morning and we had told her that she could play with her when we went to their house. Kids were running in and out of a room and we figured S might be in the room with other kids. So we encourage Cantaloupe to go to the room by herself and play with S. Though hesitant initially, Cantaloupe couldn’t much resist the idea of playing with other kids and went to the room. BP and I were glad she was learning to make friends by herself. After about 10mins, Cantaloupe came running back to us and said “S says, she does not want to play with me”. I was very angry to hear that … how dare S not play with my daughter who is such a lovely kid. But I knew that S was a kid too …. So I encouraged Cantaloupe to go in and say she wanted to be part of the group. Cantaloupe accordingly went inside again, only to come out within 5 mins, saying “S does not want me inside”. This time, S came out of the room and announced “I don’t want to play with you Cantaloupe!!!” Cantaloupe was perhaps hurt by S’s reaction. But BP and I soon diverted her attention to some other kid, who had by then settled beside us. This kid was more friendly and Cantaloupe was busy playing with her most of the time we were at the neighbor’s place.

Yesterday, we were driving out of our garage when S and her mom were walking out of their garage. Cantaloupe promptly shouted “Hi S” from the car. S yelled back “Hi Cantaloupe” … “You want to play with me?”. Cantaloupe responded “I am going out with appa and amma… we can play once I am back”. As we drove off from our apartment complex, Cantaloupe asked “S wants to play with me today?” BP and I said together “Of course dear, she wants to… you can play once we are back” Cantaloupe asks back “She wants to play with me because she does not have any of her other friends?”

BP and I were too shocked to hear that … I managed to say “No dear, she will play with you even when other kids are around.” Cantaloupe did not ask any further questions ….

Thursday, July 5, 2007


So I finally had enough of it and decided to take the escalation route.
I was brought into this re-engineering project because of my previous experience in this area and the situation demanded more experienced people to lead the project. From my past experience, I know that one has to clearly understand the expection set, before starting on a new assignment. So until, I got a satisfactory understanding of my responsibilities, I did not start on the assignment.
The project is indeed very interesting ... no second thoughts on that. I love working in the phase that the project is in ...
The first few days into the project got me by surprise ... I was being treated as merely any other person with minimal experience. The so called Manager (NG) had designated himself the role of the leader and made decisions according to his whims and fancies. It was getting very frustrating, by each passing day. I was in two minds if I was going to discuss the matter with him or should I raise my concerns to higher management. After some thinking, I decided to talk to higher management, since I wasn't sure what impression he had given of me to the senior management. (RS)

So I finally had a talk with my senior manager today. He was surprised to know of the role I was playing. (I am not sure if this guy was faking or was truly ignorant of the situation) We couldn't complete our discussion because he had to run for another meeting. (oh yeah.... as if I didn't figure it was his way of buying time to discuss with NG). Whatever that be ... we plan to continue our discussion tomorrow.

Wonder how NG is going to interact with me tomorrow in the office !

Sunday, July 1, 2007


I can't remember since when Cantaloupe wants to become a doctor. I don't recall "One event" which made an impact on her tiny brain to trigger this ... but all I know is if she is busy playing by herself, she is most likely to be treating her patients ... "Ghatu" being her primary patient. She is either checking on his pulse or heart beat ... and in all probabilities will call for "5 Shots" (injection)
My parents have taken this interest of hers a step further. They have educated her about some of the specializations that the medical field has to offer. She has generously given out family members the titles. So in her eyes, presenting to you, our family specialists list:
  • Cadiologist: Cantaloupe
  • Opthamologist: My mom
  • Dentist: My dad
  • Dermatologist: My sister
  • Orthopedic: BP or sometimes she herself
  • Neurologist: My BIL

Surprised that I don't feature in the list .... well, I was too. And then I asked, what about amma ... what is she? Pat came the answer, she is my assistant ... she is "NURSE" :)


My circle of life with BP, Cantaloupe and Junior and much more | Desenvolvido por EMPORIUM DIGITAL