Virat Kohli & Anushka Sharma – married FINALLY!

So far they were unofficially married.. NOW they are (secretly) officially married..

With all the talk of the much awaited marriage of India Cricket Captain Virat Kohli with Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma, they chose to travel 7 hours to Italy from India, to exchange their wedding vows in front of family and close friends.

So much for the Indian media, that even had TIMES NOW (Indian news channel) dedicating a special segment to discuss the whole Virat & Anushka marriage as Breaking News.dd
So, it’s finally happened and we couldn’t be happier.  The last thing that got so much attention in India was the Demonetization, I think. With the Virat-Anushka marriage making headlines on almost every Google search page, and on news channels.. I can only imagine the chaos when the couple get back from Italy. That said, they make a wonderful couple.

So here goes my wish to the couple:

Congratulations to the both of you & the families! Wishing you a Happy married life guyz! Stay in  always!

Chances are that this post will be lost among the various hashtags dedicated to Virat Kohli.. but that doesn’t stop me from getting myself involved in what will be the biggest talking topic in India, for the next one week or at least till they decide to come back to India and make an official announcement.

On a more serious note, Can we now have VK fly back for the 2nd ODI vs SL? India just got butchered yesterday at the hands of Sri Lanka and it isn’t looking too good going ahead. The team looks like a bunch of lost sheep without its shepherd (though Shepherd may not be quite the right term to use)

So its finally official!!!! 

dsd

The smiles & laughter say it all… 

 

Why I’m done trying to be “man enough”

I watched this really wonderful talk by Justin Baldoni (TED Talks) where he talks about Men and redefining masculinity. In course of his talk he also asks of serious questions that maybe every man should ask himself:

Are you brave enough to be vulnerable?

Are you strong enough to be sensitive?

Are you confident enough to listen to the women in your life?

In a 14 minutes, 43 seconds talk, he shares his personal story, while at the same time appealing to Men to look at themselves again.. and not only be a good man, but be also a good human.

Probably, you and I can learn something new. If you’re a woman watching it, share the same with your brother, colleague, boyfriend, husband etc.

Give them the gift of seeing the other side of what a man can also be.. I could relate to it and I’m sure every other man would too..

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Signs to catch in MEN when they are Emotionally broken

He will never share his problems with you

He will always try to handle things on his own

He will never express his feelings easily

He tries to look happy by forcing a smile

He will not accept if anything is wrong in his life

He will stay alone

He might appear cold & affectionate because he is cautious

All of this is because He has been taught that REAL MEN are STRONG

When friends meet…

11 years may not be very long, when you talk of two friends meeting up.. one very much Goa/India based (myself) and the other, traveled half way around the world, now settled in Thailand.
Meeting him over lunch after 11 years, I thought I’d meet this sophisticated version, heavily perfumed, different accented, money loaded, proud of his success person (as most Indians act when they work a few years in a foreign country) but to my pleasant surprise, it was nothing like that. He was the same, nothing had changed and he was the same friend who well.. we shared secrets that would go to the grave with us. It was more like meeting after a slightly longish break.. we had lots to catch up on though, that we would end up sharing in the next couple of hours over lunch.

Sitting on the front seat, he got in the car.. and as if it was an involuntary action, he decided to strap himself up with the seat belt. Of course I told him

“You’re in India.. its totally fine” which he laughed and unbuckled himself free. I guess when you live long enough in countries abroad you get used to certain things.. 

It wouldn’t be hard to imagine what two guys would end up talking about.. Yes! – that and much more and our voices got louder, so did our laughter to secrets only we had shared as friends. I can’t remember how long it has been since I actually enjoyed myself in good company. Conversation took precedence over food and we ended up eating half the food cold (the a/c didn’t help either)
From stories of past crushes to present relationship status’s (of course I didn’t have much to share there, he did) but with friends, you’re never really short of stuff to talk about ‘the girls’ (6 of them who were chatting away happily on the table behind us..and as boys would have it, we took our turns looking at them) I’m not sure he did as much – the happily committed guy that he is now, I surely did.

If meeting up one friend wasn’t enough, we bumped into another on the road which led us to meeting up with a third (she now being based in Australia) Greeted by her cute daughter at the door, she looked at the two strangers asking for her mamma.. and she was like

“mama’s in the kitchen” 

and I went like “can you call your mama from the kitchen?” 😀

“mammaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa”

She was surprised to see us, I would want to believe, she was happy too.. (though no one likes guests un-announced) that too around lunch time (I know-bad timing!)
I did manage to catch what she was trying to tell her daughter, introducing us as “see, these are mama’s friends” ..she saw, I smiled, received no response.. I further said ‘Hi’.. no response there too… I did not know what else to say so I shifted my attention back to her klmother 😀 It was wonderful meeting Zeenia, after about the same time gap (of 11 years)

While girls look prettier as they age, we were looking pretty average in comparison.

So in all, it was a good day. I knew December was always going to be the month to meet and bump into people. I met 3 in one day and it was a pure pleasure doing so! Knowing me well, my friends would admit to the fact that “It isn’t always that Savio is available to meet..but when he is, he needs to be captured – in a picture at least”

Mobile Phones: A Curse to Humanity!

It was all good while we had Land Phones.. Cordless phones at max and then some wise guy went many steps further and invented the Mobile/Cell Phone and life has never been the same again.

People cannot live without Mobile phones (Androids & Smart phones to be precise).. be it when sitting on the pot reading the news early morning or listening to music for an evening walk, the phone has become now a part of man’s daily life.

It is the first thing people check in the morning, it is the last thing people check in the night and God only knows only how many times during the day it is checked.

So my question is, what is it in that gadget, that holds so much importance in a man’s life? ..that we are willing to give up quality time with people around us, to be communicating with someone sitting in another part of the country or the world? or simply be entertained by looking at it.Untitlednm

There are already a handful of things that an Android/Smart phone has replaced in our lives.. 1. Camera.. why carry a special 1 when you can capture memories from your phone itself? 2. Walkmans/DiscMan/Mp3 players/Ipod’s are all out of the window. Every phone comes with a built in music player. 3.Alarm Clock.. Not as effective as the traditional alarm clocks but does the job. 4. Books: This has really got to hurt all genuine book lovers. Reading from your phone? It has got to be the worst thing ever! 5. Flashlight – Who needs an actual torch..and do people actually sell torches nowadays? The LED flash on the back of your phone is good enough I suppose!

.. and add to that the various apps available to do absolutely anything and everything from an android phone.

Can life get any easier? I’m sure very soon, they’ll be no physical offices for people to work from, but work done via a phone or a tab, sitting in the comforts of your home. Even a computer might end up being a show piece at home soon.

Life is getting a little too comfortable for my liking. 

That said;

I think the Mobile phone has got to be the worst invention in the world. It has literally torn people, relationships and families apart. 

Good Question.. not quite the RIGHT answer?

I’m gonna touch upon it because I felt I needed to talk about it and however brilliant or morally correct that answer might have been – that the now, Miss World Manushi Chillar gave that night in China standing on the stage, was technically the WRONG answer to the question asked and she should have been disqualified.

The question asked was:

Which profession according to you deserves the highest salary and why?

Chhillar’s answer was: “Since I’m very close to my mother, I think a mother deserves the highest respect and when you talk about salary it’s not always about cash but I feel it’s the love and respect that you give to someone. My mother has always been the biggest inspiration in my life. All mothers sacrifice so much for their kids. So, I think the profession that deserves the highest salary, the highest respect and love should be that of a mother”

Now let me break down her answer for you..

her first line clearly says ‘highest respect’ instead of highest salary.. (which according to me is a rookie mistake)

.. and then she tries to get back on track by talking of salary and love and respect and inspiration etc etc, going off topic totally! (definitely a minus for me)

Lastly and most importantly, being a mother isn’t a profession. This makes her answer totally wrong.

But that said, we Indians have the ability of twisting the question and answering it in a way that makes us comfortable and appealing to the masses listening. And also we really can’t complain on the manner Manushi Chhillar framed her answer. In India, no question is ever dealt with a direct answer. We would need to first smile, prepare ourselves mentally for a couple of seconds, frame a little story around our answer and put it gently across to the other side. That’s Indian style!

I guess the judges were listening with their hearts rather than their ears.

I’m sure the Indian women who stayed up watching the live coverage of Miss World were in tears/emotional and touched by the answer given, for saying something about ‘Parents’ or ‘A Mother’ or a woman for that matter will always earn you some extra brownie points.. (making people emotional) in this case it won her the crown.

I didn’t watch the entire contest, so I really don’t know whether she was really good in the other rounds besides the answer she gave, that everyone loved and is being talked about even today in India.

Whichever way.. she is Miss World 2017 and India should be proud of her achievement. Well done Manushi Chillar.

Blogging for Passion or Recognition?

It is said, if you love something, you will find ways to continue doing it – irrespective of time, situation or circumstance. I’ve always loved writing, not particularly for people to read but because it makes me happy. It definitely acts as a bonus if people like what I write, but that’s not why I do so. 

I do not set deadlines or specific dates that I write on.. I write when I feel like and that gives me the freedom for my imaginations to run wild, allowing it to take me to different places, feel various emotions, handle different situations and being someone I am not.. all these sitting in the comforts of my own home.

I may not be the best writer or the intellectual blogger, I just write what comes out straight from my heart, at best you can call me an honest blogger.
So while I write, there will always be a little part of me that you will find in every blog post.. if you are careful to read between the lines.

It may be a person, place or thing.. if it piques my interest, consider it in.. MY NEXT BLOG POST.

Writing to express and never to impress. Keeping it simple.

The Epic Love Story

When it comes to epic, larger than life, mind blowing love, there is no topping..

Jack & Rose

Exactly 20 years and 4 days on [to this day].. and they still live on in our hearts. While we all thought there was enough place for Rose and Jack on that raft.. yet the film makers chose to have Jack die.. for their love story to be etched in our hearts forever. It also could have been a brain freeze moment for Jack considering he was in water with temperature of around 28°F and the mind barely works well in such conditions.

The scene was iconic: Jack bids Rose a goodbye, letting her stay safe on the raft as it floats away from the sinking Titanic, leaving his fate sealed in the icy waters.

That said, there are so many such moments & scenes in the movie, that leave the viewer to just “wow” at the wonderful film ever to be made. Personally, I might have watched it over 20 times at least.. but did miss out the opportunity to watch it in 3D, which I do regret [of course at that time it was for maybe a particular scene(s)]

Some of my most favorite dialogues of the movie would be.. [and maybe yours too]

Rose: ” Don’t come any closer , I’ll let go!”

Jack:”No you won’t!” 

Rose:”You’re crazy!”

Jack:”That’s what everybody says, but with all due respect miss.. I’m not the one hanging off the back of the ship here”

Jack:” Just give me your hand and I’ll pull you back over.”

Rose:” No, I’ll let go.”

Jack:”You let go and I’m, I’m gonna have to jump in there after you!”

Rose:”You’d be killed!”

Jack”I’m a good swimmer!”

Rose:”The fall alone would kill you”

Jack:”To tell you the truth, I’m a lot more concerned about that water being so cold.”

Jack: “I remember when I was a kid. Me and my father,we went ice fishing on Lake Wissota. Ice fishing is you know where you..”

Rose: “I know what ice fishing is !”

Jack:”Sorry. You just seem like, you know, kind of an indoor girl!”

Related image

Jack: ”I got everything I need right here with me.I got air in my lungs and a few blank sheets of paper. I mean I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or who I’m gonna meet,where I’m gonna wind up.Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world, having champagne with you fine people”

Jack: ”Hold on Hold on, keep your eyes closed..Do you trust me?”

Rose: ”I trust you.”

Rose: “I’m flying”

Rose: “Jack I want you to draw me like one of your french girls..wearing this”

Jack:”Alright”

Rose:”Wearing only this”

Jack:”Rose!.. you’re so stupid…Why’d you do that, huh?” You’re so stupid Rose! Why did you do that, WHY?”

Rose: ”You jump, I jump right?”

You’d think what kind of an insane woman would jump back on board a sinking ship? But that’s True Love for you!!

Rose – “I love you, Jack”

 Jack – “Don’t you do that, don’t say your good-byes.”
Titanic wasn’t just a movie, it was REAL. It feels that way, at least when I watch it. Ever since I watched the movie (& subsequent movies shot on board ships/cruise liners), I’ve always wanted to go on a ship cruise myself..let’s see when that materializes (if ever) 
What was your favorite scene/dialogue from the movie?

2 Star material

After coming back from the holiday we went for (the family vacation-which was a package deal, living in 3 & 4 star hotels for the duration of our stay in SL) ..did I realize that I was no where close to comfortable to 3 star comfort, that said 4 star was out of my league!

At best I can say, I am 2 star material.

Let’s look at this more closely, what do I mean by 2 star material… while staying in a hotel that is a 2 star in comparison with that of a 4 star

A 2 star meets basic needs, clean, comfortable and affordable. 

when we compare to a 4 star

A 4 star comes with a superior property with a variety of amenities, upscale, high comfort standards + quality.

Now, lets think logically – We aren’t really going to use the property to walk around all day & if we talk of amenities, central air condition in the entire hotel, Free WiFi, tea/coffee/sugar with an electric tea kettle, a television, a hair dryer in the bathroom, and a bath tub with hot & cold water – I don’t think we really require all those things.

A fan that runs fast, a tasty cup of adraak (ginger) wali chai (tea) available at the stall outside on the road, a mobile connection on your phone and the natural sun to dry your wet hair is good enough, and besides we use hotels primarily for only 2 reasons, to rest and as a temporary home to go visit other places in the area. How much time do we actually spend in a hotel room? [unless you’re a honeymooning couple – probably then you would be spending a lot of time indoors]

Do we still need a 4 star luxury holiday?

Things that some Indians might do with the different amenities provided by the hotel for reasons other than what they are supposed to be used for (talking of 4 star and higher)

  • use the hair dryer to dry our clothes (specifically inner wear, socks..extending sometimes to even shoes etc..)
  • use more than normal toilet paper.. for obvious reason and also maybe to wipe shoes or shine them.
  • suitcases will be kept on the table instead of the floor (why bend when we have an elevated surface) 
  • fill the bath tub with water, then use the little jug (if provided or a cup) to bathe yourself standing inside the bath tub. 
  • the only chair in the room will be used to dry clothes, there’s always the bed to sit on.

They don’t call us Indians, for nothing!

Sometimes, I do think to myself.. how tough must it be to live as a rich man. Besides having the facility to buy, own, eat & drink the best of things of the world-there would be nothing forward to look to.. what a tragedy that is. How boring!

Having had more than a glimpse of what it takes to live in luxury for a few days, if I get the opportunity again, I think I’ll give it a pass. I am a simple person and I like to do things the simple way.

That goes with people too, simple people living simple lives having simple conversations – that’s my style!

Simple is the KEY word. No fancy for me.

“Simple is Beautiful”

Vacationing with the Family

Yes, we finally did it!!  – the 4 of us, TOGETHER – an International Holiday. It’s not that we’ve never gone out together for dinners, short trips or occasions – we have but a vacation is different, a WHOLE LOT DIFFERENT and more so if it is out of the country. I’m not gonna say it was roses all the way – it is FAMILY we are talking about here and with 4 members, mum, dad, myself & sis, there’s always going to be 4 of everything, more importantly 4 minds that think very differently from each other, in such a scenario it was necessary that at least 2 of those minds had to be flexible, to make the trip/vacation/holiday a successful one.

Our last Family vacation was 17 years ago in the year 2000, I was only 18 then.. however the one common thing that happened with me on both occasions, was that I found myself being in charge of the trolley, moving around the airport. A lot had changed though in 17 years when we last travelled – for starters, the suitcases got heavier (can’t even begin to imagine how much women can stuff into a suitcase) I felt travelling seemed to take longer somehow, I don’t know… (I thought a flight from Chennai to Colombo took a little over an hour, but it took 1 hr 40 minutes) it also didn’t feel the mind was on a vacation..personally speaking. That said, it was my first trip with the family, as an adult – I wasn’t very surprised on how the whole vacation panned out. It was good, could have been better. 

I’m sure before setting out for the holiday, each one of us had his/her own agenda, whether that was fulfilled or not, I’m not sure but we did end up doing a lot of activities together, whether it was looking at fish, birds, watching elephants or shopping, we ended up spending a lot of time with each other, 24 hours of the day which well.. was interesting! Stressful at times – definitely an experience though.

The first thing of course to do on a vacation is.. to do your own thing and not be bogged down by rules and instructions like “don’t venture too far” or “come back soon”. No matter how old you are, parents will always treat you like children. A vacation means giving one personal space to keep the mind calm.. how otherwise is it different from staying in home conditions?

All said and done, the key of going for a vacation is not to be disappointed, you might not have done/bought/seen everything you wanted, but its okay. The important thing is ‘YOU’ were there for your family and made the vacation a reality. Some families never get even beyond planning stage. No holiday is ever going to be perfect, but I guess if you can try and capture the small moments, you will realise it was a pretty good holiday overall.

It was the reactions of a couple of neighbours who did not know we were gone, when on seeing us, said.. [which I found quite silly!]

One neighbour [the Queen] told mom “you didn’t tell me you’ll were going on a holiday” [were we supposed to make an announcement?]

Another: “You’ll went for a holiday? All 4 of you? Where is Sri Lanka?” [maybe a geography lesson is due sometime soon]

Dad’s friend..met me while buying the morning newspaper: “So, you’re back!” [did he think I was going to stay there forever?]

We’re still waiting for a reaction from the neighbour downstairs, she always has something interesting to say 😜

We’re not the kind of family that updates their travel plans on-the-go on social media, like most people do. Neither do we make big announcements when we leave home or get back. At best, a few photographs uploaded on FB after we get back – that’s it. 

It was just a holiday! I guess people are just used to seeing us around all the time. The morning bread-man was happy to see me… 😁

Food – Sri Lankan & Ghaas phoos

The last time I came to Sri Lanka, the food was certainly different, in a sense that we ate authentic Sri Lankan meals..the spiciness that one associates with the food you get in the country, brings about a welcome change to your taste buds. It isn’t very much different from what we get back in India, just that the preparation and the ‘spice quantity’ is a little more that generous here.

However this time, I noticed a distinct change in the way hotels presented their food, it was mostly ghaas phoos with little portions of actual meal (either fish/chicken). I mean what’s with the decoration on the plate with all the greens? I don’t think Indians really care much for decoration. We are more interested in the actual food. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many veggies on a plate. Seeing so much of veggies on my place, reminded me of the cows back in my country – they would have enjoyed it more. We aren’t the Chinese/Japanese who can survive on veggies, Indians eat wholesome portions of food (maybe not the whole 4 course meal and stuff.. but definitely NOT ghaas phoos)

The meals I truly enjoyed, were the breakfasts laid out in buffet style. It had a mix of Sri Lankan, Indian and American dishes which gave us the freedom to explore and eat what we liked.

Food you should definitely try out in Sri Lanka:

 

Seeni sambol.. is a combination of a sweet, sour and spicy sambol. It can be served with any savory meal or can be a good filling for the sandwiches. This seeni sambol is mostly served with String hoppers, yellow rice or bread in Sri Lanka.

String hoppers.. [known also as Idiyappam (in South India)] Great choice for breakfast or a light dinner. It is best eaten with coconut gravy or pol sambol (dish made from coconut). I personally love it with parippu (dal curry) 

Parippu.. is the Sri Lankan version of Indian dal. Made thicker and it has a different taste to what we get in India. Make sure you taste it when you’re here. Best eaten along with string hoppers/rice.

 

Chicken/Fish Curry.. The chicken preparation is always spicy here, so make sure you have adequate parippu to mix it up or drink lots of water. Fish is another good choice (Seer Fish & Tuna among others)

Of course there’s a lot more to taste in terms of food in the country. The idea is to try out different food that you don’t find in your country.. but don’t over-eat. While the food may all be tasty to you, it is still food which your body isn’t used to.. so go slow. Make sure you aren’t eating ghaas phoos though.