What makes you happy?

What makes you happy? What are the top 5 things?

My husband asked me this question out of the blue, yesterday late afternoon. I was positively taken aback. Loads of thoughts began swirling within a few seconds it took for the question to register. One after another and sometimes in a blur of commotion my brain started throwing name plaques up in the air for me to identify and acknowledge. But apart from a couple of things, there were no clear front-runners that I could decide on straightway. By late evening, I may have conveyed some abstract answers that he may or may not have paid attention to 😛

His reasons for these specific questions are best known to him. He is a funny man. The conversation on a call that lasted for a minute went like this.

M – “Hi sexy”

S – “Hey. So I have a question for you”

M – “Hmm. Shoot.”

S – “What makes you happy? What are the top five things?”

M- (Eyebrows disappearing into hair & few seconds of amused silence) “Why?”

S – “It doesn’t have to immediately answered but doesn’t have to be brooded over.”

M – (With piqued curiosity and neurons firing in brain) “But why would you want to know suddenly?”

S – “So, think about it in the cab back home. I should have the answers by the time you reach home.”

M – (Chuckling) “You have to tell me why, only then I will think about this”

S- “Hmmph. It’s for a project”

M – Gets reminded of another project where he has asked acquaintances questions like this “What’s it called?”

S – “It’s called love project. Bye now. Don’t forget to answer”

M- Gets off the phone laughing for a few seconds.

Side note: I have a sneaking suspicion that he is planning something for our 1st wedding anniversary.

But contrary to what he wanted me to do, I began pondering deeply about it. My thoughts got all muddled up and I couldn’t place the things that made me particularly happy. Thoughts like shopping, movies, food came up but I kept disproving them as soon as the word was fully formed in my awareness. I do enjoy these activities – but happiness just seems deeper.

I thought maybe I was taking the question too literally and he didn’t necessarily meant just “things”. This approach was a little better –memories with bits of faded edges like my mom’s smile, warm hugs and snippets of good conversations began to pop up in my mind’s eye. Yes, that seemed better.

There were times not long ago where I could go on and on about what made me happy – mentioning everything in detail.  In fact I recall asking my husband the same question when we were dating a year and half back. He kept asking me to clarify what was the question aimed at and I kept wondering how could this question be so complicated to answer. I went back to the chat to understand that conversation (I searched the keywords on whatsapp, I am OCD like that).

The things that I told him made me happy then, stay true to date. They were easy simple things and also wind in my hair type cliché. But why didn’t these exact imagery come to me when I was looking for them, pondering over and over? What has changed or evolved? Maybe I was not in the correct frame of mind to answer this question? Or have I moved on from where I was that time ago?

I think happiness is deep, emotional state but also current. How you are placed in your life can mean you have a lot of things easily accessible that make you happy and therefore are being taken for granted.

I still actively seek out:-

  •  Reading – it’s one of the greatest pleasures of life!
  • Conversations – Especially where it makes me think.
  • Laughter – Oh! I love a good laugh any time of the day!
  • Cleaning and Organizing – I can’t take a messy anything.
  • Alone time – I get cranky otherwise.

Cheers to a husband who can make me think deeply about essentials in life-like – Happiness.

What does happiness mean to you?



Everyone has their own Story

Everybody has a story. There is comedy, some romance, some drama, a couple of mysteries and a few tragedies. No two stories are the same.

I would like to be an audience to every single story that world has to offer – learn from  them and imbibe the positives. The back stories always make for awesome narrations, giving the reader in depth view into the person’s life and his/her journey.

From my parents to my favorite Biology teacher, my best friend from school to my colleagues, my next door neighbor to somebody I met on a journey, from the great warrior Abhimanyu to the great archer Karna, from Dhyan Chand to Sachin Tendulkar, from Albus Severus Potter to Luna Lovegood – everybody has a story worth telling.

And I am all for stories – they have a life of their own.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Fireside Chat.”

Music, Wardrobe and Subway Surfer

There was a time, when waking up hours before the crack of dawn was no big deal for me. But that was when I was in school and something like snooze didn’t exist in my vocabulary. I absolutely had to, without fail, cram two – three hours of school work/study before I hurried off to get dressed for school.

Come 2015 – hurrying off to get dressed part hasn’t changed much. But everything else has – sadly! There are still those days when I get up alert like a fox and wide awake. But there are also those days when even a cold shower can’t seem to rev up my engine.

There just isn’t enough time in the mornings to indulge in any leisure activity – I just scrape along doing the bare essentials. But there a few activities that if I manage can set the tone right for rest of day.

Some good old music – When I wake up with all my wits about me, I just turn to my side and plug my phone into the speakers to enjoy some tracks from my playlist. It definitely makes me feel better and gear up for the day.

Throw all the curtains open – The room feels lighter and fresher when some cold morning air streams through the room, even if there is just a hint of the sun.

Hanging out the laundry to dry – If I can achieve this in the morning, I feel a sense of accomplishment like no other. It is a major chore for me that I would rather skip. Weird, you say?

Plan what to wear – I mean actually plan what to wear, and not just random groping into the wardrobe for some decent looking top and a pair of denims.

Subway Surfers – If time permits, I manage a couple of runs with the famous thieves down the subway tracks. Something about a feeling of accomplishment.

Yeah. So that’s all I can manage, aside from gulping down a few morsels of breakfast and getting myself to work on time.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Two Right Feet.”

Sorting Out in..10, 9 , 8…

No two days have been the same for me. There have been medium highs and extreme lows. All seemed lost yet here I am, alive (in body and spirit) to fight another day.

I am far from sorted. But thankfully not messed up. It’s one of those phases – where everything seems out of your control and you are like an outsider – watching your life unfold of its own accord in front of your eyes. I have found myself wishing and quite fervently at that – for some Angel to drop from the sky and sort all my problems.

I have a couple of people in my life who are my saviours. I can depend on them for the right suggestions. They are never judgemental or biased. And so – all is never lost. There’s always hope – right around the corner. We just have to walk those few steps and claim it as our own.

Inspired by Daily Prompt

Just Be!

Life is as complicated or as simple as you want it to be. It isn’t easy – hell no. Don’t confuse simplicity with ease, no sir. There will be road blocks, you’ll blank out of solutions and reasons, you’ll lose faith and hope, nothing will seem to be going in the right direction. But in end, it will always work out – like it is supposed to be. We just have to keep at it.

Life is made of memories. Some take a back seat while we make new ones. Life is also a great teacher.  Wise take the lessons to heart and don’t make the same mistake twice. I have learnt quite some lessons myself – lower expectations from people, to smile more often, to say no when required, to help others, keeping my word, honesty and more recently – just being myself.

Inspired by Daily Prompt

Off the Shelf – Into Hogwarts!

I love reading. No particular genre. Just books. Even when I was little, I used to gorge on all chapters from my English & Hindi literature text books within a day of buying them for new session. It probably has to do with the fact that stories build a little world of their own around the reader. With an active imagination, I live with the characters, feel their happiness and fall in love with the narration.

Currently, I am obsessed with Mythology. Indian & Greek. My roommate & I take turns at reading books that we buy online or at bookstores. We scourge the stores for best deals, across all possible platforms. It is engrossing to read about Lifestyle, Culture, beliefs, situations, conflicts and conversations that our ancestors might have had.

While quite a great deal of books lie unread in my bookcase, what I keep returning to, is the Harry Potter series. Once every little while, I feel the urge to pick any one of seven books, arbitrarily and immerse myself in the wizarding world that J.K Rowling has so successfully weaved. Their magic has never failed to attract me. And I never get bored with imagining an exasperated Hermione, grinning Harry & Ron.

I plan to introduce my kids to Harry Potter books as soon as they are old enough to comprehend the concept of good and evil, friendship and courage.

Inspired by Daily Prompt

Paint a Picture?

First – like so many of my fellow bloggers, I have made a mental note to self to post at least once a week. From past couple of months, the writer in me has really been prompted by only the Daily Prompts. But hey, this is a start, right? A good one? Well, I certainly would like to believe so.

I always and without fail, always have a lot of commotion in my mind which also includes my daily dose of day – dreaming. But given the scenarios in my life right now, it is actually in a clutter. So, there are even more thoughts wading and zig –zagging their way through already engaged grey matter. My frame of mind on a canvas would be chaos too.

There will be a lot of lines. They will be criss – crossing and angling in all plausible directions across the length and breadth of the canvas. Varying in thickness and intensity of the colour black. These depict all the parallel thought processes, sorted according to the priorities and enormity of the situation. The setting of all of these would be a dense cloud like element – dark and foggy.

But all the seriousness and obscurity will be very adequately punctuated with tiny sparkles of sunlight, butterflies and flowers littered around the canvas. The dash of liveliness stands for a huge and much-needed reprieve from the boredom of murk.

On a personal note – work is improving. It is not at its best, but definitely loads better. Hopefully all the other troubles will sort themselves out in due time.


Being Animated!

Which emotions can I not contain? Well, All of it.

Being emotional is one thing, and being able to express it is another. I don’t really know if that’s good or bad, but I have been told at quite a few instances that my face shows all that is going inside my mind. All the turmoil, emotions, mood swings and feelings manifest themselves freely on the mirror that my face is. Combined with gestures, that can be a handful. So much so that, quite recently somebody told me ‘You are so animated’.

I laugh heartily, cry easily, fly off the handle in a jiffy, apologise in a heartbeat and forgive without a second thought. This does not stem from the desire of letting people know what I feel about them. But probably from my desire to not pretend 😛

Want to know, what other people find easy to contain, click here

That Friendly piece of Advice

There has been no dearth of such circumstances in my life where I have fervently believed that, that was probably the worst time of my life. But thankfully, I have been able to climb out of all such situations – stronger and better.

One such time, not so long ago – I was utterly disturbed. You know those time when loads of tiny bits didn’t quite add up. Work wasn’t so great. I was having trouble convincing myself that this was really my dream job. Quite a few major decisions had been made, which were not quite to my liking and I had no control over them. I was having a hard time seeing eye to eye with people around me.

During one of those days, emotionally pent-up, I went to a temple which was on my way to work. I was seeking some peace, some solitude and some relief from the mental pressure that had built over the last few days. And all the frustration – it was probably showing on my face as I refused to give in to angry tears.

Out of the corner of my eyes, I saw an elderly man sit quite close beside me. After making himself comfortable, he turned towards me, addressed me directly and said very clearly “Child, don’t fret this much. If you are here, that means you are okay. It’ll all pass.”

That’s it. Those words. It took a minute for them to sink it. When I turned to look into his direction, he was already clambering up and was gone before I could formulate a reply in thankfulness.

Honestly, those words got me through the not – so good phase and now that I reflect back I can say – Everything happens for your own good.

Daily Prompt: 11th May, 2014

The Wanderer in Me :)

Daily Prompt: 23rd April , 2014

Sometimes, even I am astonished by the force of my yearning to travel. To see everything there is to see, to soak in and revel in all the beauty around the world and capture all the breathtaking sights on the canvas of my mind.

Haven’t been able to travel so much lately, for all the myriad reasons one can think of – money crunch, leavelessness, no company and blah blah. But I do have a bucket list for places to travel and here it goes:

Greece: Santorini in particular. For the rich mythological history and architectural heritage.

Egypt: To see the country that harboured one of the oldest civilisations of the world

France: Beauty and Fashion!

USA: Ah! From Grand Canyon to Disney Land.

Germany: Castles – Need I say more?

Honorary Mentions – UK, Cambodia and Switzerland

Before I can go off day-dreaming about one of the above mentioned, I have to start saving up (Makes a mental note)

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Star Plus Mahabharat- New Treatment of the old Saga

Courtesy:- Career Masti

The story of the great epic Mahabharata has been passed on from generations, told and retold in various forms, over hundreds of years. It remains a delightful tale of desires, hunger for power and evil vs good. Various versions, translations, cinematic interpretations are out there for readers to gorge on and viewers to treat themselves.

At present, Star Plus is broadcasting its own rendition of the saga in its prime time slot of 8:30 pm on weekdays, half an hour episodes. Keenly interested in Mythology and having read one of the English translations, I found myself drawn towards the series that takes the viewer on a voyage of times thousands of years back.

It has inevitably drawn a lot of comparisons with the previous editions of Mahabharata. While the B.R Chopra’s still feels authentic in treatment and characters, the newest version stays true to the story, grandeur and is accompanied by visual effects befitting to the era of advancement in technology. So you get to see more somersaults, sky – high jumps along with other dramatic stunts and visuals.

Some of the cast members instill an amazing recall value – the characters of Dhritarashtra, Bheeshma, Kunti, Krishna and Shakuni are well-played. It looks like ample amount of research has gone into the Jewelry, Costumes and Armour department. The dialect and pronunciations, though not always up to the mark, are pretty much taken care of. On the whole, in my personal opinion I find the series worth buffering on YouTube on the weekdays.

But the bottom line is – I am more interested in the story itself than the narrator 🙂

I Love my City!

It’s been five years of knowing you, and my love for you increases day by day. You are unpredictable, yet reasonable, compatible with my tastes, preferences and adapt according to the changing times. The perfect Melting Pot. Bangalore – I love you!!

On a train journey with a friend, we sat down watching ‘Wake up Sid’ to while away time. It’s a refreshing, good watch, replete with good acting and foot tapping scores. The female protagonist arrives in the City of Dreams – Mumbai, in search for her independence and to pursue her dreams of becoming a writer.

Here’s my favourite part of the movie: She emphatically stresses on how coming to the city was her dream and now that she is here, it won’t do if she went got subdued by the city. Over course of a few weeks, she was head over heels in love with the city.

Recently, I went on a trip to Mumbai, for work. I have constantly been in awe of the city, partly because it is the Bollywood hub, financial capital and all that jazz. And partly because everybody I have met has always stressed on how amazing the city is.

Mumbai is indeed awe – striking. Heart of Indian Entertainment Industry (Bollywood, to most of us) – it carries so many dreams, aspirations and ambitions inside of itself, developing and nurturing some while handpicking some for rejection and desolation. Remains of British Rule strike a chord with history while the buildings with modern architecture and sky scrapers bring you face-to-face with the progress in terms of technology and finance. I liked it there.

But there is something about Bangalore that my mind and heart refute to fall in love with any other city I ever happen to visit. Not that I have seen much of India :P. But I am irrevocably in love with the city – the climate, the crowd the culture, the laid back yet progressive attitude and everything else. I might be found cursing the traffic every other day when I have to trek across to other part of city for work, I might be found haggling with the auto-drivers and cursing myself for not knowing the native language, but I am in love with Bangalore

Courtsey- beautifulcitiesoftheworld.blogspot.com

Courtsey- beautifulcitiesoftheworld.blogspot.com

Here, right here – I have struggled and I have managed. I have lost and I have won. I have self-doubted and I have been revived. I have wept and I have laughed. I have curled up in one corner and I have explored. I have exploded with anger and cried with compassion. I have detested and I have loved. I have let go and I have learnt. I have lost and I have gained. I have made a fool of myself and I have earned respect. The city has made me stronger and has helped me grow up in so many ways.

I love it here but I am sure as hell I am neither the first one to say so, nor the last.