Thursday, April 26, 2012

So much to talk about...

There are so many posts I have wanted to write... I am going to club all of them in one:
  • I attended a wedding last month. It was a casual affair since the couple had already had a court wedding few months earlier. No... they did not elope. The girl's father was not well and the couple wanted to get married anyway. I was not happy that KC wore jeans. I have attended Delhi weddings and jeans is a no no. In Mumbai, its ok... but not in Delhi unless you are flaunting a Tommy or Armani or something. I turned out wrong 'coz the whole thing was very casual. There was no stage or anything. The time on the invitation said "8 pm". My plan was to finish dance class by 7 pm, rush home, change into wedding finery, leave home by 8 pm, reach at 8.30 pm, have dinner by 9 pm and be home before 10 pm. Sigh!!! Just shows how long it has been since I attended a wedding. When we reached at 8.30 pm, we met the groom at the gate. He was leaving for home to pick up the bride. Thankfully, people started trickling in... but even till 9.30 pm, there was no sign of dinner. We left anyway since do not prefer being out till late on Sunday nights. 
  • The cook has taken leave for 15 days. Lucky lady. I wish I could take 15 days off to go home. Even 3 days leave is hard to come by and involves a lot of planning. I am cooking dinner these days. Last night, I cooked cauliflower veg and chappatis... KC made the rice in the microwave and there was leftover daal. I started cooking at 7.45 pm and we finished eating by 9 pm. Not bad. And my rotis turned out well. Rotis are tricky... no matter how well you can make them, they require practice. We have started guarding the leftovers. It means one thing less to cook. 
  • A mouse has entered the house. It was staying right outside the house and the neighbor kept requesting us to keep the garbage somewhere else but the garbage collector wanted us to leave it outside the house. I decided to listen to the collector. After all, the mice can scourge in the garbage even if it is kept few steps away. And now, one of them is living with us. I have laid out a trap for the last 3 days with goodies inside- cheese, bread and biscuit. But he is a smart cookie. 2 days back I managed to feed it rat kill. Now, we are waiting for it to die. Unfortunately, it is living inside the couch and biting into it. Die... mouse.. die. It is like living with a ghost... it is not seen just felt. 
  • Vicky Donor: Brief review- Love story about a sperm donor. Reading the rave reviews online and on fb, KC and I headed for this one last weekend. Big mistake... for some reason, the tickets cost more- Rs 350/head. The first half was humorous... well, anything showing Punjabi family is hilarious. Just before the interval- Anu Kapoor was explaining the hero that he is making a mistake by thinking about marriage 'coz then he will not have enough sperms to donate. It sounded sooooo damn ridiculous. Also, the movie drags on for 3 hours. The choice was between getting mind fucked or going home and getting good sleep. We chose the latter and left in the interval. The biggest grouse I have - sperm donation has been treated in such a ridiculous manner... the infertile couples have been made fun of... sperm donation is linked with making huge money. Its so sad that in such progressive times such insensitive movies are made. And John Abraham has produced it. I thought he is an educated, sensible guy. Guess, I was wrong. The actors are good... the lead hero and heroine have played their roles well. Please avoid. 
  • Mirror Mirror: We watched the paid preview last Thursday. Julia Roberts was the reason we went for it. It is the story of Cindrella with a twist. I liked it. Even though the bad reviews are justified, I liked watching something other than the usual Cindrella story. And its always a pleasure to see Julia Roberts. 
  • Jazz is going well. A lot of my old batch mates have been promoted and a lot of people from current batch have moved ahead. Now I am more or less with people of the same level which makes it easier to catch up. I have shifted the timing from 4.30 pm to 9.30 am. That gives me entire Sunday to myself. Looking forward to it. 
  • De-cluttering: Few weeks back I cleaned out my dressing table cupboard. I had not done that in 3 years... yep, not even when we moved from Mumbai to Gurgaon. I have the habit of hoarding or buying ahead to time. I hate to run out of stuff. My worst nightmare is to wake up in the morning and realize I am out of shampoo/soap/toothpaste/conditioner. Trust me, I will skip work on that day rather than stepping out without any of these. Not just that, I always over stock utensils detergent/washing powder/phenol etc. This is also 'coz everyone in my family stocks up. My mom would buy detergent in wholesale for the entire year. Since, the hospital bedsheets (dad is a doc and has a hospital below the house) are washed at home, the detergent usage is very high. Another reason is that I work in the personal care/cosmetics industry. I get some products at discount every quarter. I tend to stock up incase the next sale is delayed... I also buy all our new launches... and also competition new launches. And then I have my preferred products. All this has lead to around 10 pcs of deos, 4-5 bottles of hair spray/gel/mousse (I do not use any of them), anti ageing cream (useless for me), entire year's stock of shampoo and conditioner, 4-5 bottles of face scrub, 4-5 bottles of face washes, 3 jars of moisturizer, 3 brands of suncreen, 3 brands of face mask, 3 brands of make up cleansers, 4 brands of perfumes, 5 brands of hair serum etc etc. You get the idea... I have not purchased all of these... some are gifts from the company (2-3 times in the year we get free products) and some gifts from my sis (incidentally, she also works in the same industry in USA). I managed to throw away all the expired products and still have a year's supply. But my cupboard looks very much neater. I have been begging KC to finish his deos before they expire. Btw, all this is leftover after sending products home every quarter for family- bro, dad, mom, sis and relatives- 4-5 masis, mamas, cousins etc. 
Ta...da... be back with more updates soon. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Books... Books... and more books

The IPL is helping me catch up on reading. There is nothing else to do at home. One TV has IPL and another one is acting up... actually, Airtel DTH is acting up and getting a response from the call center is a pain. I did brave it and placed a complaint. The engineer called me the next day and asked me to call his office. I refused to do so. How many nos am I supposed to call? I received 2 calls from executives asking me about my level of satisfaction for the service provided. I gave them the choicest abuses. Instead of sending another engineer, they have done nothing. Airtel sucks.

Coming back, I ordered part 2 of Hunger Games- Catching Fire from They delivered the very next day. I was dying to know what happens next... does Katniss go for Peeta or Gale? This book does not answer that since Katniss is confused. In this book, Katniss is sent to the games again with Peeta. A good read.

I was dying to read the third part but managed to restrain myself since I had to start on "The Other Side of Me"- Sidney Sheldon's autobiography. I have grown up reading his books and loved each book. I love his writing style... he does not get into emotions and stopping abruptly lets the reader use his/her imagination. It also creates the maximum impact. For some reason, I expected him to write his biography differently. I was so wrong. When I started the book, it felt like a thriller written by me on someone else. I went back, googled to check whether it was his own biography. I had no idea he had a rough background... and had written screenplays in Hollywood. The only show I know written by me is "I dream of Jeanie" and it seemed a one time thing to me. It was nice to finally know about him. He has focused on his career and less on personal life. For example, he mentions his wife's death in passing. Worth a read.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Apna Khoon

I have been in a dilemma due to a conversation I had the other day.
I had been preparing for the market visit of a senior manager in the organization... that explains the previous posts.
Anyway, on the day of the visit, we stopped for lunch. The manager is a new joinee and was asking details about me.
Him: So, who is in your family?
Me: Mom, dad, younger bro and elder sis
Him: Silence
Him: Umm... so, your parents are in NCR?
Me: No... my husband is here
Him: Oh, you didn't mention him when I asked about family. I wanted to know if you are married

I was zapped for a moment? Is my husband part of my family? I mean... sure, by Indian traditions he is. But isn't family about "apna khoon"? As in, people of the same blood?
Don't be scandalized. I love my husband... he is my best friend... we are great together... no matter how many disagreements. We fit together... like we have never fit with anyone else.
But, is he family? Just 'coz he has been with me for 4 years now... can he supersede my parents?
Ok... he did... when I married him against my parents wishes. But still, family is mom, dad, bro and sis... thats how it has been always.
Like, my jeeju is extended family. He does not immediately come to mind when I talk about family.
And KC is different... he is my best friend. Family is those people from who you keep secrets and friends are those with who you share those secrets.

When I mentioned this to KC, he said; "Whenever I am asked about family, I do mention you. But knowing you, I know you have different view point on that. Thats just you"

Sigh!!! Does anyone else understand this? Or as Indian women (even men), are we brought to consider husbands automatically part of family.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pet Puja

Hey. My weakness is hunger... not food... hunger. When I am hungry, I cannot think... become cranky... irritated...
Last few days, I have been on the verge of facing this weakness. No, we have not become paupers. Our gas cylinder is over and due to some shortage, it will at the end of this week. I do have a microwave... but showing the maid how to cook in it is a pain. I need to be present and direct her at every step. After a weekend of eating out, I decided to use the microwave. The plan was to cook pulav. Everything was going according to plan when the cook discovered pests in the rice. We had to throw it away, the plan was aborted and we ordered in.
Today I had a brainwave while shopping for groceries. I picked up packs of ready to eat. Many, many years ago (when I was in 11th std- around 11-12 years back), my mom and I had purchased the frozen parathas. I was impressed... they were strictly ok... but being able to heat packaged food and eat it seemed so much convenient. There was another time, my dad and I were alone for dinner. We had bought a packet of aloo mutter. The veg was good, but quantity was extremely low. Keeping all this in mind, I bought packets of different companies... atleast of one them would be decent and stocked up for 2-3 days.
We just had masala rice and aloo mutter. It cannot beat home cooked food... but is so much cheaper and more convenient than ordering in. A pack costs between Rs 40-95, depending on what is bought. A dal fry is more expensive than aloo mutter or rice.
It is nice to be able to have options.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Sigh! Sigh! Sigh!

Hiya. This week has not been too good. The struggle keeps getting harder and harder coupled with my lower motivation levels. I come home everyday frustrated and do not like it. I have been exhausted and have not visited the gym entire week. Also, stress makes me over eat and shop. Not good for my health or pocket.
I need to de-stress but next week is going to be very hectic.
One thing I learned in B-School was that people can take credit for your work. Most of our projects were group work and it was very common for someone to not be involved in it but take credit for it. Of course, blame was never distributed. I am extremely careful in my professional life about this... I try to pass on the credit to my team and do not let anyone take credit for it.
Say for example, you send a mail with some pics of good work done by you. You send it across to someone senior to you. There is a possibility that this person may remove your mail and forward the same stuff with her/his name to his/her seniors. Happens all the time. I always make it a point to CC a third person so that its harder for someone to take the credit. Any yet, it happens... all the time.

Sigh! Sigh! Sigh! Yeah.... just want to sigh. The thought of all the work makes me want to go under the covers and sleep through the week...

Sigh!!! The gas cylinder is empty which means I will have to beg the guy to give me another one asap. HP sucks... they torture you before sending the cylinder.

KC and I complete 3 years as a married couple on 18th April'12. Its a wonder we even remember the date. And we are still wondering how to celebrate it. We might go for a celebratory dinner but both have been too busy and lazy to scout for good celebration places.

Sigh.. Sigh... Sigh... I think I will write more when I am in a better mood.

Btw, just came across the website It sells cosmetics, personal care products etc online. It has good discounts on some products but the best part is how fast they deliver. They deliver the very next day. Also, they have imported brands like NYX. I have purchased NYX from international websites and the delivery time was almost a month plus I had to pay shipping. There is no shipping charge on for more than Rs 300.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Weekends filled with stuff

I have been meaning to write about stuff we have been upto over the weekends...
Here it goes...
  • We watched stand up comedy "Nothing Like Anything" by Kunal Roy Kapur and Anuvab Pal. Its is the first stand up comedy I have seen live. I hate the shows on TV. They are so pathetic with Archana Puran Singh and Sidhu laughing over nothing. Kunal is the actor in Delhi Belly... but I know him better as Jay's friend in 'Just Mohabbat'. It was ok... not bad... not earth shattering... a welcome change from dreadful movies. I like that Gurgaon has a cultural hub called 'Epicentre' where plays, cultural programmes are screened as often as in Delhi. I also wondered if I was over dressed for a play but the glitterati put my mind at ease. Epicentre is where the high class come for a dose of culture. After all, the tickets are priced higher than multiplexes. There were ladies with LV bags and stuff.
  • We had dinner at Drift- the restaurant at Epicentre. I have read rave reviews about it. We had Indian non veg. It was very, very good. Service is very slow but otherwise its good. Oh, and it is priced high. I would visit again on a special occasion only.
  • The Hunger Games: I had overlooked this movie but a friend's review on fb got me interested. We watched it last weekend and I liked it. It is a kids movie... it had the potential to become a thriller for adults but kids are the target segment... so, it is slow and violence has been toned down. I read that it is based on a book and I purchased it today. Very excited about reading it. Please do watch the movie...
  • Godaan by Munshi Premchand: I have grown up reading Hindi stories in the textbooks in school by Munshi Premchand. He is a very famous writer. I picked up the book from the library and have taken my time finishing it. It is the story of the farmers and zamindars before independence. I don't think the situation has changed much- for the farmers, at least. It is a very touching book... Initially, I thought it would be quite depressing but its not. Despite the storyline, it is not depressing. Worth a read.
  • TGIF: I really like TGIF.... not a place I would visit every weekend, but maybe once in 2-3 months. The other day- KC, a friend and I met up for lunch there. They have a seperate menu for lunch where you can order any 6 dishes (3 have to be main course) for 300 bucks per head. The quantity is lesser than the normal menu but its a good deal. Do try it. Btw, it is only for lunch- Monday to Friday.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Shopping Paradise

So, Delhi is the shopping capital. It is miles ahead of Mumbai or any other city... and here is why:
  • Sarojini Nagar- I have already done a post on it. It is amazing... Linking road, Mumbai does not even come close. I am going to make another trip soon... very soon.
  • Janpath: Visited this place today. Apart from western stuff, it has a lot of Indian wear... handicrafts, shawls, jutis etc. Also, it is more conveniently located. I bought quite a few clothes- Zara top (which does not fit too well but thats a chance I don't mind taking for 200 bucks), A purple jumpsuit, White kurti (to go with my Phulkari dupatta), Indian top (fits so well), Zara sleeveless long bolero, linen pants (white fit so well), loads of earrings. Each of these things cost me around 200 bucks each.
  • Forever 21: If you have been here, you know what I mean. If you not, I pity you. Here's why:
  • Always has a new collection. I visit it 1-2 times in a month and they always have new stuff
  • They always have something new and cute. I bought these amazing, various colored sports bra for 250 bucks. Really cool. Last time, I bought cute polka dotted pink shorts for 450 bucks
  • They always have new trends- pastels, lace, neons etc. No other outlet has similar stuff.
  • Quite affordable. Prices begin at around 1000 bucks which is very decent.
  • Amazing jewellery. Don't believe me? Check it out for yourself

  • Zara, Mango, Aldo, Body Shop, Mac, Inglot, Colorbar, Pramod: Whew... and the list goes on and on
Apart from this, there are 2 more shops I love to visit:
  • Max: Yep, you heard me right. I always find something good and cheap. And I always buy my night shirts from here. Where else will I get them for less than 400 bucks?
  • Globus: I have been to the B'glore (which has closed down now), South Ex, Thane, Bandra and Noida outlets. I think Thane has the best stuff. No kidding. It is better than Bandra outlet. I have bought so many dresses at affordable rates. Just the other day I wore a black and white dress to office after months... and a stranger in my building complimented me. That never really happens to me.
Even if I move out of here, I will visit regularly just to shop.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Maid Woes

Me: So, I went to the building office to get the maid's address. We searched through 2 registers but the details were not there. Also, the ID proof that is submitted is sent to the police station and not maintained in the office. I spoke to the building watchman; we went through another register but there was no entry. Our cook has seen her crossing our building sometimes- around 8 am. I will wake up early tomorrow and wait for her downstairs.
KC: Wow... thats a lot of effort for a maid. If only you would have gone through the trouble to find a husband.
Me: C'mon... please don't compare yourself to the maid. I can live without you... but not without a maid.

I am not exaggerating. A maid is important... very important. And I have had 3 maids with some temporary people in between. But, let me begin at the beginning.

I was lucky to have a found a maid within 2 days of moving in. She is a young lady (not kid) who was good with the cleaning. The only problem was she was mostly late. We leave home by 8.30 am and when she turned up at 8 am, she could not finish all the work. Thankfully, whatever she did.. she did well. But, she would take leave 4-5 days in a month. This caused a lot of inconvenience. If the house is not cleaned even one day, I will not have utensils to use the next day. There were many times when KC and I had to eat out 'coz all the utensils were dirty. There was this one time when she didn't turn up for 2-3 days. I had to appoint another guy who left my sink dirty and left without completing the work. It was a frustrating Sunday with me cleaning the sink early morning. And then I realized that she is pregnant and has to go for her delivery. She promised to send her mother-in-law or sister to replace her. I was not too happy but didn't have an option. The mother-in-law didn't turn up after 3-4 days. I appointed another Bengali maid at a higher salary. After 2 months I realized she was cleaning the bathroom only with water. I started following her around when she was working and correcting her. I hated it. She wouldn't wash the utensils properly.... ignored the fridge... Awww..... I wanted my old maid back. She was lesser of the 2 evils.
Thankfully, God (if, he exists) answered my prayers. The maid demanded 2k for the regular work. I literally showed her my middle finger. She quit. The search for the old maid began. I asked the building guards to help me look for her. I also waited for her to cross my building so I could hire her back. But, no luck.
Anyway, I have appointed another maid and I am hoping to have better luck with her.