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Monday, 27 April 2015

The Changing face of celebration

Ever since I came into this world life for me has been a long never ending series of celebrations, as I grew up I celebrated a lot of things. My first balloon gave me great joy. It gave me a feeling of liberation as if I too was flying high.
 My first kite, preparing it to be air borne was like a ritual that I always looked forward to with anticipation and joy. I had a grand party when I became a teenager and the celebration of this declaration of independence was a joyous event. Getting together with friends of my own age was a feeling that cannot be put into words. I felt that I was on top of the world and could achieve any thing or every thing. Nothing was impossible for me. I felt that I had the whole world within my grasp. Then passing out of school was another reason for me to celebrate. A new life and new vistas were opening before me. College and its new found freedom gave me plenty of reasons to celebrate.
 However I feel as we grow up the reasons for us to celebrate and the things that give us happiness keep changing. We are constantly evolving and so is the reason and source of celebration. I still remember the joy and celebration that followed when I passed out of college. It was a feeling that made me feel that I am on top of the world.
However when I got married it was a even bigger celebration and I thought that nothing can surpass it. Becoming a parent proved me wrong as the arrival of a young and new member in the family changes the meaning of the word celebration all together. You watch every move that the little one makes with awe and amazement.  Every time the little baby kicks or punches the air you celebrate as if you have scored a goal in a world cup final or won and brought home the cricket world cup. The excitement and happiness accompanied with each move from the development of speech from the gurgling to the little ones first words are all a reason to celebrate.
 Then when the little one decides to crawl or takes his or her first steps you feel more happiness then what Neil Armstrong would have felt when he would have stepped on the moon and walked the first steps.  As the little one begins to walk and turns the whole house into his playground I began to celebrate every throw of the ball and those scribbling on the wall by pencils, pens and wax crayons that ruin the paint on the walls, door and ransacking all the decorations of the room yet it gives me an immense pleasure in just admiring the antics of my little one.

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Tuesday, 14 April 2015

My dil ki deal for my mother

There is only one and only one person in my life that is very precious. It’s my Mom. She is my mom, my best friend, my mentor, my confidante, the reason behind for whatever I am today. I often think and wonder how she managed such immense sacrifice and determination. My father was posted in Dubai and we had limited means of living. She single handedly raised me and my younger sister since we were very young. I was 4 years old while my sister was 2 years old. She provided us the best quality of education and life. She never complained to anybody. She never compromised on anything when it concerned us She never let us feel the absence of our father in any way. She managed our lives beautifully as a single parent. She fulfilled all our needs without any complaints. It’s really commendable how she balanced the roles of a father and a mother. She instilled in us good morals and values right from our childhood. She insisted that we should be honest and good towards others. We must help others in whatever way we can.I still remember when we were kids we could afford only 2 chapattis  per person. In that she managed to take out 2 for the cow and birds in each and every meal without a fail. She strictly told us that we should not hurt anyone be it animals, birds or humans. No matter whatever the situation we should stay humble, simple and positive. Money can buy us any material happiness but our good deeds would give us permanent happiness. We cannot take money with us after living our life but only our good deeds would matter. We only leave behind memories and time spent with our loved ones. We should treat everyone with respect. Share good things and good things would come back to us for sure was her mantra. We should do our work honestly and never think about results. Balance is a must in living our life. Right balance is a must. I have never seen such energetic and enthusiastic lady in my life. Even with her limited resources she was always positive in her approach to life. She showed us the globe and shared her dreams of exploring the world. She took us to many places in India. She knew so much about the places and we learned something new every time. She amazed me always. Britain always fascinated her. She said one day that she would like to see the Queen's Palace. That day I made a resolve to fulfill her desire. After 25 years today I am fulfilling her dream. I planned a trip to Britain on her birthday. When she stepped in Britain she looked liked a little kid. With wide eyes she explored many places there and of course her she saw the Queen's Palace which was her long cherished dream which I could at last fulfill..

“I am participating in the #DilKiDealOnSnapdeal activity at BlogAdda in association with SnapDeal.”

Starting a new life with my dil ki deal

Every girl has many dreams for her life and it’s her desire to get the best in life even after her getting married. I was not much different I too had planned many things. I had created a rosy picture of my married life in my thoughts. I belonged to a middle class family and got married into another middle class family.Ours was an arranged marriage. My mother in law said that I am like Lakshmi that is the incarnation of the goddess of wealth and will bring prosperity and good luck to the family. My husband had just got his first job and he was posted to a new city. He had no savings and his family couldn’t support him or his new family that is me. As he was posted in a different city he took me along. When I went with him after my marriage, I found it to be a completely new city and very different then our quiet home time. There we were all alone and knew no one. We shifted into our new house. We had no money to furnish the house but somehow we managed the daily expenses from the advance he got from the company. When my husband's boss came to know of our marriage he insisted that he wanted to visit our home to congratulate us. It was a moment of crisis for us. My husband wanted to leave a good impression on his boss. I prepared a lavish meal which I could manage within our means. My husband was very nervous. He told me to be prepared for the eventuality if his boss was not happy with the arrangements. He would never get responsibility and the position that he deserved at his new office. I calmed him. He went to his office and in the evening he was to return with his boss for the dinner. This arrangement was made as his boss did not know the way to our new home and to avoid any inconvenience to him. Everything was set except for the windows which were bare and had no curtains.The neighbours from the next flat could peak in to our little new home from their balcony so putting a curtain there was a must. At that moment of time my husband had a zero bank balance and moreover was on leave without pay as he had gone on an extended leave due to his marriage. No solution seemed in sight. Then suddenly I remembered my first small savings kept with great care in a small silk purse. This was the money I had gathered in all the wedding ceremonies of mine. I was supposed to preserve and keep it securely. It is an omen that this money brings good luck and wealth in the house of the new bride. So I went shopping for curtains with this token of good luck. The new curtains added beauty and grace to the room and to my utter surprise even after shopping some money was leftover which I deposited in the bank. It was my first shopping for my new home where I was starting my married life with my husband. It was a big decision for me to use the money that was a symbol of good luck and was supposed to be preserved by me. However it was my dil ki deal to use it to help transform a house to a cosy home. To this day I and my husband both marvel at how my first saving had done wonders to bring us joy. I wanted to make this day very special for my husband. This was our beginning of a life together. From that day till now he involves me in his every decision. That day with my deal I had earned his love and respect.

“I am participating in the #DilKiDealOnSnapdeal activity at BlogAdda in association with SnapDeal.”

Monday, 13 April 2015

ads that take me down the memory lane and CrashThePepsiIPL

Ads specially TV commercials come and go some are so unimpressive that you do not even notice them and there are some that we talk about and like see a few times. Yet there are some that have stood the test of time When I think of them the Amul Girl with her Utterly Butterly Delicious series are campaigns that have stood the test of time without any major change in strategy.
Some of the ads that caught the fancy of the nation were either very simple or had a very catchy jingle.
Remember the  Ketchup Commercial Starring Ranjit  Kapur (who eventually went to make the serial Fauji)
The jingle went something like this
Thoda ketchup try karo”
“Ketchup hota kaddu bhara”
“Isme kaddu nahin zara”
Thoda ketchup try karo
“laa peele tamataron is hota hai taiyyar, volfarm,
naa hi koi milawat is mein, na banawati rang,
ek baar jo khaaye isko, ungli chaate baar baar, volfarm
man tastes ketchup and utters -
“Wah! Lagta ghar ka bana hua !!”
There use to one weird one about Uptron
It went like this
Its On
Its On
Its On
Then a guy say’s What’s On
Then a boxer boxes from inside the screen and says  Its Uptron
Its On
Its On
Its On
Now the boxer asks whats on?
The first guy with a black eye says Its uptron

This was a weird one and I could never really understand what the brief was but perhaps its due to the weirdness or the Jingle but is still memorable.
Talking about weirdness.Remember the Cinkara ad. Where a thin and lean Javed Jaffery drinks Cinkara and comes smashing out of a glass. I wonder if there are any more glasses left where he lives or has he given up Cinkara?

I hear that during College ragging in those days college fresher’s  were asked to sing and act the ads that were common in those days such as Colgate which went like this
Colgate ka chota packet
Colgate ka chota packet
Kholo dabao
brush pe lagao Colgate ka chota  packet
Colgate ka chota packet
And the VICKS VAPORUB ad was asked to be enacted
Ting Tong ... (The door opens)
Zukam bad gaya na, kyon gaya tha bahar
Happy Birthday Mummy - Vicks Vaporub

There are so many memorable ads from the yesteryears that can be still found on the internet and people view and enjoy them. They reflect the simplicity of the times gone by.
This Pepsi IPL, it's not just about cricket. It's time to crash with your own created ad! Make your own Pepsi ad & if it's chosen, it could play on TV during Pepsi IPL! And hey, it doesn't end here… Even if you're chosen as a finalist, you stand a chance of winning a prize amount of Rs.1 lakh! So what are you waiting for guys?

I am joining in on all the Pepsi IPL action in my own style with the #CrashThePepsiIPL activity at BlogAdda.” 

Memorable ads and CrashThePepsiIPL

When I was young I took ads at face value. Whenever the ad of a children’s product  came on TV we children would rush to our parents and ask for that product. Be it a chocolate or a toy whatever the product for which an ad appeared on TV became a bone of contention and we  children would compel l our parents on buying the products. Perhaps even the advertisers seem to believe that children are a soft target and aimed their ads towards children. So many child centric brands used children in their ads and had catchy slogans. The ad of Tobu Cycles with the catchy slogan “Aao lekar chalein apni Tobu cyclein” was direct and reached the hearts of a number of children. Me and a number of my friends became the proud owners of Tobu cycles. The brands such as soft drink brands target their ads towards adults and do not feature kids.
There were quite a few memorable ads like the Seema bulbs and tube ad featuring Sri Devi brought glamor to the small screen and many a time when the ad appeared during  the during the dull and boring Sunday movie it used to be the only bright spot.
Another  popular ad use to be Hawkins pressure cooker ad with a catchy jingle  “Hawkins ki siti baji
khushboo hi khushboo udi
mazedar lazatdar
khana hain taya
murg masalaam
tamato soup
mutur pulao
maa ki daal
kheer aur
dum aloo
hur mushkil
aasan karaye
mintoan mein
jhatpat pakaye
hawkins pressure cooker”

When I grew up further I found that Brand competition is very common and colas are no different . My thoughts go back to the 2006 Wills cricket World Cup that was being co-hosted by India ,Pakistan and Sri Lanka. With big tournaments like these various brands vie for becoming tournament sponsors and the official products of use for the be. Pepsi ‘s rival brand had bagged the rights of being the official drink of the world cup. However Pepsi did a coup by coming out with the slogan “There's nothing official about it” It became very catchy overnight and talk of the town. Pepsi over took its rival and became very popular with the masses. The ads were very catchy and captured the imagination of the masses with its nothing official series of ads. This tagline became so effective that even today the ads have a quirky appeal and freshness of concept associated with them. I hope to see more such ads being made and shown during the current IPL season.
This Pepsi IPL, it's not just about cricket. It's time to crash with your own created ad! Make your own Pepsi ad & if it's chosen, it could play on TV during Pepsi IPL! And hey, it doesn't end here… Even if you're chosen as a finalist, you stand a chance of winning a prize amount of Rs.1 lakh! So what are you waiting for guys?
I am joining in on all the Pepsi IPL action in my own style with the #CrashThePepsiIPL activity at BlogAdda.” 

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

जीतने वाले को

जीतने वाले को सब
सिकंदर कहते हैं
तो क्या हारने वाले को बंदर
कहते हैं ?
हार और जीत तो हमारे हाथ में नहीं
इसी लिए कहते हैं
कोशिश करने वालों की
हार नहीं होती
दो किश्तियो में सवार होकर

नादिया पार नहीं होती

Lookup and smile Hope and optimism are coming your way

I have been a very health conscious person throughout my life. I always exercised daily and maintained a healthy diet to remain healthy and fit. When I got married I got a lot of love and care showered on me by my in laws and relatives. In a lot of households food is the expression of love and I discovered this fact about my new household after my marriage. As everyone was calling us that is me and my husband to their homes for lunches and dinners. Generally these were always very rich spreads and soon I began to gain weight.The series of these invites continued way over a six months into my marriage as a result I had put on a lot of weight. My out of shape body made me look plump and unshapely this caused me a lot of concern but even after exercising I was not able to lose the extra pounds.This was making me sick with frustration. Then I became pregnant and slowly put on a lot more weight. With the spread of the news of my pregnancy started another round of parties and celebration. Day by day I was putting on more weight and looking at myself at the mirror I felt as if I am looking at a Sumo wrestler.  This sight was very depressing and apart from regular mood swings that I experienced during my pregnancy I began to stay very depressed. Looking at my condition my doctor referred me to a psychiatrist. The lady psychiatrist had her clinic in her home and I started visiting her for counseling sessions. These sessions were not of much use but on my fourth visit I found a little girl on a wheel chair outside the clinic. She was the daughter of the gardener who worked in the doctors home. This young girl had polio and as she could not walk even with the crutches the gardener used the wheelchair to move her around. I found the girl to be very chirpy and talkative. Soon we struck a chord and became good friends. I don’t know why but when she said that she found me to be beautiful it felt like a big compliment. When she came to know that I was going to have a baby she said that my baby is very lucky that he or she will have such a beautiful mother. Her words were so genuine and her talk so inspiring and full of hope and innocence that I soon forgot all my troubles. I realized that this extra weight is not the end of the world for me and post my delivery I would surely  be able to shed the extra kilos. I had found a new friend in this young girl as a chance meeting with her had filled me with so much hope and optimism 

Discover a new world with relocation

I was a fussy child who wanted everything on my terms. Being the first child of the family has its advantages that everyone showers you with so much love and affection. At quite at an early age I realized that all my wishes were being fulfilled by my parents. All my whims and fancies were being met and this made me very demanding.  When I was in class XI my father got transferred to another city but I did not want to go as my friends were here in this city. I had no desire to go and relocate. Even though it meant better job prospects for my father as we were to be transferred to a big metro. I was adamant that I did not want to go and live in another city. My father made up his mind that he would forgo his promotion and stay in that very city so that my education is not disturbed. It was then that my mother intervened and suggest that we go and spend a few days in the new city and if I liked the place only then we would think of relocating. As it was summer time and my school was closed for the summer holidays I gladly agreed. I thought it would be a nice change for me as I had nothing much to do in my holidays. So we embarked on a journey as tourists and landed in this big metro. The next day morning I found tall skyscrapers and malls all around me. The shopping malls were filled with fashionable clothes shoes and accessories that I had never seen before in my life. I was fascinated by so many gyms and dance class centers that were crowded with young people my age. Visit to this city was an eye opener and I was enamored by this new lifestyle and the fast pace of the city. My father took me to a school that was close to the place that we were staying in. I found each classroom equipped with computers. They were using modern teaching techniques that took classroom teaching to a new level.  I found the experience to be an eye opener and I felt that studying in such a school can definitely help me brighten my career prospects.  

I found out so many activity centers where I could learn to dance and sing and indulge in so many extra-curricular activities that I could not even think of in our home town. Its not that I began to dislike my school or my own city but instead what I saw in front of me was the opportunity to relocate to this beautiful city and #StartANewLife.   I began to understand the benefits of relocation and by the time it was time for us to go back I gave my father the consent to relocate and #StartANewLife in a bigger city. As for my old friends I could always go back and visit then in the vacations or better still call them to my new home in this new city and play the perfect host to them.

बेचैनी कम होती नहीं

बेचैनी कम होती नहीं
आप से मिल के जाने के बाद
चैन मिलता नहीं आप से मिलकर आने के बाद
चैन और बेचैनी के बीच का यह लम्हा है
है हमारी मुलाकात का लम्हा

जो है चैन और सुकून से भरा  

Together we can succeed

When I was feeling down and was in low spirits I discovered the power of #together thanks to my uncle who gave me a new hope and a new perspective to live my life.When I got admitted to a college I thought life would be all fun and party time. With this new found freedom life would be more enjoyable. Though I was partly right in believing this but at the same time it brought a new responsibility to study on my own as there were no teachers to nag me and I had to find ways to remain focused and  keep working towards my academic goals. One day our Hindi professor kept a surprise test .I had very little preparation for the test and as a result I flunked. Not only did I fail the test but I was the one who had scored the lowest marks in the class. This was even more insulting as during school days I had been a pretty good student in the Hindi subject. Now in college I had become the lowest mark scorer in my class. I began to sit on the back bench during my Hindi class and I avoided eye contact with my Hindi professor. From that day onwards I completely lost interest in the Hindi subject. Sitting in the Hindi class my mind used to drift and wander and I was unable to study or concentrate. I found it hard to answer the questions in class and my interest in the Hindi subject and then in other subjects began to dwindle. I started to become a recluse. I was going from bad to worse in my studies. Even though I was aware of this downwards drift but there was very little that I could do to help my performance. In those days my maternal uncle came to stay with us for a few days. He had a habit of reading books. Every evening after dinner he would call me and read out stories. These used to be very interesting story sessions and I found solace in them. They were the only bright spots in my otherwise dull and boring college life. One day my uncle asked me why I remained so gloomy and disinterested. His words were so full of love and care that I told him everything that was happening to me and how I had lost interest in my studies. He became very quiet and then pulled out a book from his collection. It had short stories about people who overcame great hardships to achieve success in their lives. He gave me a lot of hope about my future. He said that I was able bodied and intelligent and can achieve anything and nothing is out of reach for me. He was very encouraging and helped me form a perspective about negotiating difficult situations in life filled with hope and optimism. Thanks to him I regained my interest in studies and eventually passed my exams with good marks. To this day I remember my uncle's kind words that had given me so much hope for the future. I cherish the time that I had spent #together with him.

एसा पैगाम तो आए

कभी ख़याल में भी हमारा ख़याल ना आए
ऐसी क्या खता की है हमनें कि
कभी आप के लब पर हमारा नाम ना आए
कोई आए कोई जाए मगर कोई एसा
पल तो आए कि आप मिलने आएँगे
एसा पैगाम तो आए