Tag Archives: Family

134: Sunday Specials

14 May

While I stewed a brilliantly fragrant batch of dal, I hopped in for a leisurely shower (just before the water began to heat up thanks to the mad heatwave we’re undergoing), waltzed out, fried us some papads to go with our rice, dal, and salad meal, and had lunch ready for the two of us. A cooled down our hangout room, drew the blinds, poured us some beer, and had Bahubali 2 ready to watch. Little did I think I’d be watching the movie, forget watching it so soon. But watch it we did. I’ll tell you that I enjoyed both my lunch and the movie, but felt more satisfied by the former, and the experience, than the movie itself. At the risk of the many brickbats that have already flown my way, I am glad to have seen it at home, because it went on for longer than I could sit. As fantastical and intriguing as it was, I switched off periodically, especially when the sfx took over more blatantly than my unimaginative mind could stomach.

We had chilled mangoes to complete the experience, and as if that wasn’t enough, I cut myself whatever leftover banana cake I could, and had that with some ice cream as we closed the movie as well. It’s insanely hot outside, and everything has come to a standstill, including the forest that is growing on my arms and face, because we just can’t. It’s making me eat more, and eat sweeter colder things more. I cannot understand this shift in eating habits, but it has me scared because of just how much junk I’m consuming in the name of “light food”.

We watched planes last evening, once it’d become dark and was okay to step out for a drive. Of course a lot of me was tempted to hang on to a plane and get the hell out of this hell hole to a place where the breeze blows cool air and where the signs of rain really do usher in some rain and respite. I am not complaining, as much as I am lamenting the ghastliness that is this furnace we’re living in. And to think it hasn’t rained yet.

But I’m not letting this take away the specialness of my Sunday. Not now at least.

133: Friday Feels and Saturday Spiels

13 May

I didn’t, or couldn’t write much at all yesterday because I had a dinner party to huff about even though it was clear that there was no cooking on my part to do. Barring throwing some fries into the fryer, ensuring we had enough ice to soothe six summer parched party souls on a Friday night, keeping the beers in our fridge chilled the way my family likes it (though that was A’s job to take care of), and figuring out where we wanted to order from, there wasn’t anything else I had to do really. Except, I still was flitting around in those feels (also why I posted the picture I did, yesterday).

And that’s because the host in me, and more importantly, the dessert-maker in me couldn’t digest the fact that I hadn’t got anything to offer my family who was spending dinner with us yesterday. It’s a blasphemous thought, especially when I’m everywhere on social media when I bake, and nowhere when I have guests over. So in went a stack of mousses that I’d infused with coffee and layered with toffee cake crumble, ready to set for when it’d be time for dessert.

Except they hadn’t set or weren’t even close to setting. To be fair, it wasn’t a dessert to be made on short notice, and expect to set especially quickly under the summer circumstances that we currently are in. 45 degrees is no joke. Anyhoo, a prompt banana sponge was baked which not just added some literal cushioning to my semi-solid but beautiful mousse, but also made my house smell like it was the place to be on a Friday evening. I promise there isn’t a more inviting smell than that of freshly made food.

I’ve no idea where the evening went – before I knew it, it was past midnight and we’d packed my tipsy happy family in their car back home. We have leftovers to party with today, so there will be no cooking whatsoever; just shameless after-party binging of butter chicken, butter naan, chilled sirke waale pyaaz (pickled onions in vinegar), and of course some beer and tv to go along with it.

I reckon this is how some weekends ought to be. With exercise, which A and I seem to be avoiding like the plague. What a killjoy that was.

130: Girlfriend Time

10 May

There’s no denying the balms that are mom-time and girlfriend-time. I’m a sucker for both, and a hardcore fan of both, too. It was yesterday while tinkering around the laptop waiting for A to come back home from a super late work-day, that P from the states buzzed me. It’d been a while and given that she’s a new mommy trumps everything else. But she calls whenever she can, and we speak. The last time that happened, she asked me if all was well and said that I needn’t let the world or its stresses affect me, almost automatically once we said hello to each other. Yesterday, she needed to hear the things that I was telling her, or that’s what she told me as I went on yapping away like I always do. I even FaceTimed with her baby daughter, who looks just like her father, which P and I almost telepathically grimaced about for a fleeting second. It’s one of those we carry you for nine months (and a lifetime) and you still turned out like your dad harmless and non-regretful funda that gets a lot of us women, you know?

Today has also been an off which I spent a lot of propped up on my elbows texting my girlfriends, who are, by the laws of nature, in different parts of the world. But you take that and suck it, universe, because we still can be with each other whenever we like. Random small talk and rants spiralled into full-blown ventilation sessions and conversations that did naturally revolve around life, the men in our life, the domesticities in our life, the work-life imbalance in our life, and of course, the necessity to stand strong in life. It’s funny how different perspectives in the same conversation take shape and make you see various mirrors that you probably never show yourself, or know exist. My mother and my girlfriends are those mirrors. Not to be sexist, because my brothers and my husband are my main mirrors too, but I’m sticking to title specifications right now.

Anyway the conversations made me think about my life and my journey and assess where I stand in all of it. It’s all easier said than done, because each of us has our own contributory factors that make our experiences our own. It’s as simple and point-blank as this forward that my aunt sent us the other day – if we were all to sit at a table and present our problems for someone else to take, we’d all leave the table taking along with us our own problems and no one else’s. It sort of made absolute sense irrespective of just how much one might crib or feel troubled.

But having said that, there’s no better mirror to look into than a good, hearty, honest conversation with your support system, whoever they may be. Mine are my family and my friends; all with different curvatures for the view they need to show me whenever I turn to them.

119: Where Do These Saturdays Go?!

29 Apr

From as far back as I can remember from my being married, Saturdays have proven to be my busiest weekend days. There’s this chaotic amalgam of magically waking up much before I want to, grocery shopping, prepping for the week, ensuring we get hearty complete meals into our systems, which is also sometimes generously fed by an excitement to just cook, apart from other unforeseen activities that make themselves present when they’re not needed or wanted. Fixing leaking taps, getting fixings done at home, tending to the payment of bills, etc, the list is like that bunch of sour berries no one wants on their cake.

Today has also been exactly like that. The AC guys who were to show up at 10 arrived not before 130, thereby pushing our entire schedule beyond what we’d imagined. But there’s a family get-together to attend and I couldn’t care less about this chaos for now.

:)

118: Family Fridays

28 Apr

If there’s anything more special than family time, do let me know because most of me cannot see beyond family and spending time with them. Mine was spent sprawled on the floor carpet with my youngest sister, twirling our hair in the fan’s breeze while listening to stories interspersed with random acts of social media stalking. It was followed by giggles, tea which we ordered from outside and savoured with bun bhujia, and just being lazy. Perfect summer afternoons, if you ask me.

I wouldn’t ask for more. Not one thing more, not one thing less. :)

106: Ostrich Situation, Again

16 Apr

It’s Sunday, and I’m trying not to mourn the loss of a beautifully perfect weekend. There was relaxation, food, laughter, games of cards, music, soft lights, cold drinks on ice, gardening, eating, sleeping, and wrapping up the loose ends of the week that was. It was perfection like most things seldom are; not that seeking perfection is an ideal or even a goal.

Thoughts about tomorrow do make sneaky appearances into my mind’s space from time to time; thoughts which I drown by sticking my head into things that’ll help speed their disappearance. They pry their way when I’m prepping for the upcoming week or when I’ve chosen to watch just another episode of DS instead of finishing what’s at hand.

And it’d be a shame to allow this to ruin an otherwise magical weekend, wouldn’t it?

98: Sisters And Saturdays

8 Apr

I can’t remember when last we sisters got dressed up to randomly walk around a mall and indulge in some unplanned retail therapy. It’s unusual for us to do something like this because we live in different cities and then again, we’re not mall people at all, especially on the weekends. But here we were, all packed into a car which deserved an All Ladies parking spot just because it felt apt, hopping from one showroom to the other. Needless to say, unplanned shopping did happen. That harmless set of accessories or dresses on sale, that steal you find at the bottom of a pile or those shoes that look too pretty to resist – they all were dunked right into our bags.

Malls and shopping were born to make us all broke. But (temporarily) happy and broke. Sometimes I wish to have enough and more to buy things that don’t make me think twice, but imagine how that’d pan out? Perhaps we’re best where we are, sometimes. Except when it comes to buying things you really need – because of course what you really need is never really there when you need it. After waltzing through the entire colour palate that was a cosmetic brand’s lipstick range, and after feeling partially colour blind (man those myriad multiple colours that pleasantly assault your senses!), I didn’t get what I zeroed in on. Fate. Shopper’s luck. Murphy. Call it whatever you want. It was there, and it struck when I wasn’t watching.

But this made up for it when we got back home. Back into our shorts we hopped, on the floor we sprawled out, and into this magic we caved in, sharing bites between us four. Whatever our respective lucks might be, there’s nothing more healing than sister time with the added bonus of a ginormous box of these sweet air fluffs! :)

 

61: Two Cups Of Tea, Please

2 Mar

Till as recently as a year or less ago, that regular cup of morning tea seldom featured in my life. Sometimes it was had, sometimes coffee was had, and sometimes, when every sense in my body felt far from lethargic, nothing was had. I realised this last week when many a mornings at ma’s place were spent without its appearance. There simply was no need to turn to caffeine – I was as awake as I could be, and as refreshed as a beautifully relaxed mind, body, and soul has the capability to be. That feeling of non-dependency when you think otherwise, is so invigorating, no?

Back when we shifted homes a few months ago, I figured it’d be special, serene, and exclusive to share my mornings with A over a cup of tea. He has to have his tea when he wakes up, and so it made sense to incorporate that need into a private, personal ritual – the ruffling of a newspaper, the breaking of dawn (the sun wakes up after us in wintertime – I promise we aren’t early risers), steaming cups of chai, the crack of a biscuit, silence, peace… exactly how I envision mornings to be for morning lovers and haters, alike. This ritual worked and gave us that added push to get out of bed with lesser pain because who likes cold ripping through that personal warmth you and your blanket share? Only a steaming hot cup of adrak chai (ginger tea) can salvage such cruelty, if given half a chance. And that’s actually where my daily chai routine began.

But as winter fizzled away, so did this crisp and cosy weekday morning routine. There was travel involved, and who knew it could be this destructive to all things set, precise, and habitual. Somewhere down the line, it settled on the realisation that neither of us was a tea before heading out to work person. I wish for us to be that, but we aren’t. Also going through days without a chai fix at mom’s reaffirmed this reality – I didn’t need that stereotypical fix to open my doors to a day.

Yesterday was sprinkled with everything unknown – handling two working lives, a house, our selves, our peace and quiet; all without trying to make it overbearingly difficult or stressful. It’s a skill – to let go in just the right amounts for harmony and control to coexist. We had our tea and it felt lovely; even with me hopping off in between sips to get ready for work. That ideal life of getting everything under control and then sitting down in peace is going to take some tweaking and quite some effort. It happened, nonetheless, and this time around, something told me that my day would depend on it.

There’s nothing like intuition.

And another cup of tea, for reassurance, please.

60: Looking Back On February

1 Mar

February 2017 was…

fast

fun

frivolous

fantastic

full of food

full of family

full of friends,

and just fabulous.

She did have wind beneath her wings, this one. If January was a slow month, February was everything in the opposite direction. She was a breath of fresh air, and I’m still gasping trying to catch my breath.

This month was all about letting go, relaxing, and giving myself my due priority. It was the month where I switched off my alarms (even though that happened only about 10 days ago), ate without thinking twice, indulged in the luxury of afternoon naps (when they didn’t evade me), and of pampering myself in whichever way I could. That weighing scale I’d mentioned in my January post still hasn’t been bought, though. :|

It’s been a good month; the best yet. While my cup feels immeasurably full; my words seem to be running dry.

I hope you’ve had an interesting month too!

Let’s March on. :)

 

53: Bangalore In A Week

22 Feb

I’ve been here for exactly a week now, and this is what it’s been about, and somehow always has been, irrespective of the duration of my trips.

Visiting Commercial Street to hunt for saris, suits, the odd bangle set or so. This time it was also for Tamil Nadu cotton bedsheets.

Stopping by at Woody’s for my filter coffee or biting into a plain or palak (spinach) dosa at Shiv Sagar, followed by fresh lime soda, sweet and salt. Sometimes if we’re indulgent, we stop at that corner shop, as we have been for decades now, to have either a scoop of banana ice cream or Bowring kulfi which he now keeps.

Rushing to the tailors, both in different parts of the city, and sternly giving them deadlines that are obviously a little before my departure date.

Getting entwined in reunions of various sorts – family, friends, classmates, ex-colleagues, and of course, my four-legged family friends.

Sipping chai or coffee at Airlines and getting transported back to those bygone days. Of course the only things that have changed are that it’s a no-smoking zone now, and that I can go beyond ordering just a glass of chai/coffee for myself, even though I seldom do.

Visiting Koshy’s, if the plan works out, and ordering our default favourites just for old time’s sake.

Perhaps a walk in Cubbon Park, which still hasn’t happened, but I hope it does.

Sinking my teeth into beef, beef, and more beef.

Now thanks to Swiggy, I haven’t found the need to get my ass to Corner House, which also is a mandatory visit. I’ve been ordering in my sundaes and indulgences ever since I got here.

Carefully picking meat off thorns as I relish my favourite – fish. Yesterday, for the very first time in my life, I stopped a fishmonger, Aslam from Mangalore, on his moped, and bought fresh mackerel and prawns from him. It’s either this or heading out to a coastal eatery to get my fill.

Stopping by at Blossom’s Book House. They’ve shifted a little up Church Street, next to Matteo. This time I was in a rush, and couldn’t stop by. But walking past it counts, right?

Making my customary pit stop at Home Stop, just because I love their stuff, always have, and hopefully always will. Now if I could only afford the many things I love. :P

Having my fill of Bangalore’s beers. Always.

And dosas.

And filter coffee.

Now that I’ve made this list, it doesn’t seem like much at all. In fact, if one were to be efficient and plan their holiday well, it would’t take time to do all this. But here I am, feeling like I’ve done whatever I came here to do, but still with a lot more left to do. Nevertheless, and with all that has come my way, I feel immensely grateful to just be here, spend time with the ones who make it worth my while, and to go back with my glass full. :)