Saturday, February 26, 2011

With great power comes a lot of things

I hate power.

My father says that it's the easy way out for the lazy one because without power, there is no responsibility. But I don't see the point of responsibility or obligation as long as one does his duty. Performs his role, so to speak. You know... Follow the 'Do what you want for yourself as long as it doesn't hurt anyone or yourself and do unto others what you would want them to do unto you' credo. It's quite simple really.

But I hate power so much that sometimes I wish that we didn't have free will. Free will is too much work at times. You have to make decisions and then face the music. And it is when the music turns into screeches or loud banging or cries of a banshee that I wish I could surrender the free will into the hands of a puppeteer who could steer me into a choice free existence based only on the puppeteer's volition. Better yet, if the puppeteer is the Omniscient one.

But this is what the universe said in its e-mail to me the last day.

"The main thing those who've "passed" would like to tell those who've not "passed," is that once you get over the shock of having safely arrived - completely intact, cool as ever, and bathed in love - what you'll miss most about Earth, after ice cream, is the beguiling romance of uncertainty.

Oh yes you will.

You really do have it made,
    The Universe"

And when I recognized the shiver of pleasure and thrill that ran through my spine as I contemplated the excitement of uncertainty, I became confused again.

I wish someone would at least decide for me whether I hate power and wish to denounce it for a life of mundane stillness and languidness or whether I love the power of choice and the 'beguiling romance of uncertainty'.

I'm tired!
I have been so lost of late in images that I haven't felt the need to find joy in words. It's easy to be blown away by something when it can compel you and charm you and lure you into seduction and submission. And that is what photographs have done to me. Flickr has opened a whole new world for me, where an Ansel Adams exists around every corner and a Steve McCurry pops up every 6 minutes. I am stunned by the talent. I am awed by the talent. And I am humbled by the talent.

How can we not call ourselves blessed when we live in such a world as this.

Earth laughs in flowers

Friday, February 25, 2011


Finally, I gave up on obeisance,
and refused to welcome
either retribution or the tease

of sunny days. As for the can’t-be-
seen, the sum-of-all-details,
the One—oh, when it came

to salvation I was only sure
I needed to be spared
someone else’s version of it.

The small prayers I devised
had in them the hard sounds
of split and frost.

I wanted them to speak
as if it made sense to speak
to what isn’t there

in the beaconless dark.
I wanted them to startle
by how little they asked.

~ Stephen Dunn

Date a girl who reads

Who is Rosemary Urquico? Well, I know one thing about her. She must be the most re-blogged person, but no one seems to know who she is or where she is from and neither does she have a blog. I think. But this is what she said and she deserves an hug everyday for the rest of her life for this piece of writing of hers.

"Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes. She has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.

Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag.She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.

She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.

Buy her another cup of coffee.

Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.

It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.

She has to give it a shot somehow.

Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.

Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.

Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilight series.

If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.

You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.

You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.

Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.

Or better yet, date a girl who writes."

— Rosemary Urquico 

I read it over at Una Bella Vita's, a sweet blog that is full of beautiful, magical, whimsical things, and I have read it over and over again. I have sent it to all the people I know and of course I had to blog about it!

Spread the message of peace, love and books and the world will be a glorious place to live in I think.

And if you date a girl who reads and writes, make sure you treat her right and hold on tight!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Black and White Love

It's time to rejoice because Melissa and Kristi are back with their diptych challenge after a little hiatus.

The theme this week, is Black and White, and this is my image.

These are my favourite (red) shoes!

Happy are my feet when I wear them.

Blessed is my soul when I wear them.

Content are they when the languish in the wind, just like they are doing in this image.

Go on, make your feet and shoes happy!

Genius, thy name is...

I have been obsessed with this artist that I found on Etsy called Dinara

Her handmade die cut 'Home sweet home'

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Slice of Life

This is me in a nutshell on a platter.

This is my day.

This is my life from 9 to 5 9 the next day.

This is me.

On second thought, this plus a bunch of other stuff is definitely me! ;)

No Banana Leaf

This is an 'Ela Appam'. This is made of rice flour, jaggery, coconut and a mix of spices and is steamed in a 'Vazhana Ela' till it is cooked. For the life of me, i am not able to find the English name of the Vazhana Ela. So Vazha means banana, na means no and ela means leaf. So this would literally translate it to 'no banana leaf.' 

Well, duh! I know that this is not a banana leaf! 

If you do know what it is though, please tell me! I'm kinda dying of Ela Appam withdrawal after having eaten up this last one. I need to make a batch for myself.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned

When William Congreve wrote

'Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned
Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned.'

in the Mourning Bride, he definitely had my mother in mind.

While my mother was spewing venom in my house today about this colleague of hers who had scorned her, this is what was happening in hell. (For those of you don't know, hell and heaven are situated in the sky that you can see from my balcony. This is where I spend all my evenings, sipping a glass of milk. The concept is too complicated to be explained over a post, but to make the long story short, when my mother is in a good mood, heaven comes on display and when she is livid, it's time for hell.)

So this is what we saw today.

I don't want to imagine what her colleague has in store for her tomorrow!

And as for the poem, I offer the stage to Mr. Congreve. Take it away!

As you'll answer it, take heed
This Slave commit no Violence upon
Himself. I've been deceiv'd. The Public Safety
Requires he should be more confin'd; and none,
No not the Princes self, permitted to
Confer with him. I'll quit you to the King.
Vile and ingrate! too late thou shalt repent
The base Injustice thou hast done my Love:
Yes, thou shalt know, spite of thy past Distress,
And all those Ills which thou so long hast mourn'd;
Heav'n has no Rage, like Love to Hatred turn'd,
Nor Hell a Fury, like a Woman scorn'd.

Good work, William, I must say!

And if you want to see what heaven looks like, this is it.

Heaven comes on all the time. This was taken yesterday, right after my mother ate the coconut cupcakes with lemon glaze and toasted coconut garnish that I made yesterday.

E for Dizzy Lizzie

And now its time for my highlight of the week!

ABC Mondays at Tatter Beans'! (Or in my case, ABC Mondays on Tuesday!)

And we have progressed all the way to E now! (If you knew me, you would be very proud that I have managed to persist at something for four whole weeks! Just you wait and watch, you naysayers... as I go all the way to Z on ABC Mondays on Tuesday!)

And now its time for a little narcissism and self love because E is for.....Elizabeth! (That's me btw!)

This was an accidental shot. I was trying to shoot E for English Rose when I accidentally clicked the shutter release button. And this is what the camera caught. And I got so enamoured by myself that I forgot all about the English Rose. That's life, but here is the shot.

What's your E for the wEEk?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Dreaming is like watching TV in your head

You wanna know what's really weird?

I woke up today with this sentence ringing in my head "Dreaming is like watching TV in your head. But lucid dreaming is when you have the remote in your hands too!" And I repeated it a few times in my head to commit it to my memory, made a mental note to myself that I need to write this in the blog and then went right back to sleep and repressed all memories of it until a minute ago when the sentence suddenly cropped up in my brain. Out of oblivion. I don't know where these sentences came from, because it's not like I read it sometwhere, but I sure seem to be much more literary in my sleep than in real life.

And if you think this is strange, let me tell you about these two recurring dreams that I've been tortured with of late. If dreaming is like watching TV in your head and lucid dreaming is when you have the remote in your hand, recurring dreams are like the sound from broken record that no one bothers to fix but is constantly playing.

Recurring Dream 1: I am in the train station, waiting to catch a train to go somewhere really far away. My bags are already in the train and I am waiting for the sounding horn so that I can hop on the train right before it leaves. Suddenly the train starts to move and before I can get on, it starts moving way too fast and I am unable to get on. And this goes on for a many many dream minutes because the train is infinitesimally long and I am not getting the hint and giving up trying. And then I wake up.

Recurring Dream 2: I am in a restaurant or a party and someone hands me this delicious looking piece of dessert made of really exotic ingredients such as Madagascar plums or Chantilly cream or Lavender infused chocolate mousse with raspberry cream or.. (you know I could really go on here right?!!!) and I look at it lustily and can't wait to devour it crumb by crumb. And I bite into this piece of delectableness (delectability?) and find that there is no flavour. I have lost the sense of taste! And I try again and noting! I then go mad and try to gobble down all the food that I see, hoping that something will titillate my tastebuds. But to my dismay, I can't taste anything. I have lost my most cherished gift! And then I wake up.

I wonder what Carl Jung would say about these!


For all the Simpsons fans in the world and the only one I know!

It's high res, so you can print it and put it up on your mirror. I bet Homer would approve.  

Honey honey!

If I had to give God an award for the most inspired food stuff that he conjured up, it would undoubtedly be for honey.

Think about it.

Honey is actually nectar from these gorgeous living things called flowers that honey bees gather up and do their magic on. And then we get to lay our hands on it and do what we please with it! What a creative, brilliant plan. (Of course, except from the point of view of the honey bees., I would imagine.)

And the double whammy is that it tastes so divine. And its sweet! Like sugar, only better! (The way I see it, honey has got its history, chemistry, biology, physics and geography down pat!)

Thom gave me a pot of honey as a Valentine's Day gift last year (I know. He knows me so well!) and eating a spoonful of this is the highlight of my day. I even eat up all the ants that fall into my yoghurt when I try to pour the honey. I cant bear the though of wasting even a drop. And every time I lick my honey soaked fingers, I marvel at the taste.

How did God come up with the taste? How did he make something taste good. And how is something so delicious so good for you? It defies all laws of nature. What got into God when he made honey, I wonder. And why couldn't he apply the same rules when he made milk chocolates and coffee icecream!

But if honey ever comes up with an autobiography, I'll be the first one to order a copy. I want to know its secrets.

Something in the way...

After looking at a zillion food photographs, I have come to the conclusion that the one and only thing that is in the way of me taking pictures that look as brilliant is a rustic looking wooden table. I need a wooden table.

That's all I need. I'm all set otherwise.


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Just for today, my middle name is sad.

Sad is the image that clouds my vision.
Sad is my middle name today.

Blue is the tint on my rose coloured glasses.
And it blocks the sunshine away. (Yaay!)

The End


Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Rumi Bug

I think I've caught the Rumi bug.

That's because he says things like this and drives me wild.

When your chest is free of your limiting ego,
Then you will see the ageless Beloved.
You can not see yourself without a mirror;
Look at the Beloved, He is the brightest mirror.

From Thief of Sleep

How could you not want more!

Things I wish to change about myself

1. I wish to sleep early and wake up at the crack of dawn after completing a complete 9 hour cycle of nightmareless, waking up kicking, screaming and shouting - less sleep.

2. I wish to crave exercising. I wish for it to be a need, much like my current need to be on a constant supply of Benadryl.

3. I wish to be less lazy. I wish to love cleaning up and be less of a pig that I possibly am today. I wish that I would resent being called a piglet by my parents.

4. I wish to be more meditative. I wish to be able to calm my mind in a second and then hold that one thought, even if the one thought is of Benadryl.

5. I wish to not always self - medicate but get off the couch and go to a doctor when I need to.

That's it. I'm pretty perfect otherwise I think. ;)

Confessions of Blogaholic

1. I sometimes spend whole days sitting in front of the compose page of this blog. Of course, I am looking through a zillion other pages at the same time and it is not like I have a writer's block or I run out of words. I just am always conscious of the fact that I need to write here. And I think about this blog about 50 times a day.

2. I feel a wee bit of jealousy when I am over at other blogs and I see the ginormous (gigantic + enormous! Like duh!) amount of comments and followers. For instance, look at Pioneer Woman. The other pioneer women read her. The desperate housewives read her. The milk men read her. The butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker read her. Hell, even I read her. Of course, she's funny and weird and sweet and easy to read and hilarious and adorable - all desirable traits for a blogger. But 500000000 fans? How!!! Maybe she makes all these different identities up with different personalities with different things to say but its all just her feeding into this diabolical plan to create a worldwide phenomenon. But like I said, I'm only a wee bit jealous.

3. Now that I have gotten that bit of ugliness out of my system, imagine a time when I am a really influential blogger, much like The Sartorialist, to whom Time Magazine has bestowed the title of one of the 'Top 100 Design Influencers'. (Don't smirk! It's perfectly plausible.) Imagine that I have scores and scores of readers across the seas. Across the galaxies even. There are tweens hanging on to my every word and teens hanging dying to be just like me. What then of my old posts? Are they going to remain unread? Will the new people read the old stuff? What happens to my brilliant thoughts up until now? Can I repost them at a later stage when I actually have people reading me? Because the words that precede... they deserve to be read! It would be tragic otherwise! Such a loss to the universal mindspace and collective consciousness of humanity!

4. Moving on, I would like to say that I am a closet blogger. No one who knows me in real life knows about my blog(other than Thom - but I don't think that counts. Thom and I - we are like one mind. Or we will be. When we get married. But that's a whole other story for a whole other post on a whole other day. Hell, I could even make a whole other blog and just write about Thom and me! It wouldn't be boring to say the least, and there is enough fodder to last years, with more on the way certainly.). But this blog remains anonymous otherwise because I love that it allows me to feel like Dr. Jekyll once in a while. I do get bored of being Mr. Hyde all the time you know and Dr. Jekyll is a nice diversion. This wouldn't work if my friends and family read my blog. But I wonder all the time what they would say when they do find out. Maybe they will stone me to death for keeping secrets. Maybe that is how I'll die. Maybe that is why I will be reborn as a Druggie. Because I've been stoned before! Ho ho!

5. And the award for the worst joker of the year goes to... Dizzy Lizzie... for 'crack'ing the aforesaid joke.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Be with those who help your being

Be with those who help your being.
Don't sit with indifferent people, whose breath
comes cold out of their mouths.
Not these visible forms, your work is deeper.

A chunk of dirt thrown in the air breaks to pieces.
If you don't try to fly,
and so break yourself apart,
you will be broken open by death,
when it's too late for all you could become.

Leaves get yellow. The tree puts out fresh roots
and makes them green.
Why are you so content with a love that turns you yellow?

 - Mewlana Jalaluddin Rumi

Say Cheese

This post is about this awesome cheese souffle that my friend Kaushalya and I made to go with the tomato jam.

Now this cheese souffle is the stuff that dreams are made off; soft as a baby's cheek, light as an angel's feather and standing proud and triumphant like a lotus in full bloom.

And it is so simple to make.

And while to other people this cheese souffle is just a cheese souffle, to me it is supremely significant as it forms my main course and my dessert. How 'bout that, huh? How much more can you ask of a food product!

So to begin with, we need

1 cup of grated cheese, preferably unprocessed.
This can be any one cheese or you can use a combination of cheeses. Because I live in Trivandrum, a hick town in Southern India, and I have no access to cheese with a first name other than 'processed', that's what I had to use. But I would implore thee to not succumb to the pressures of country living but rather fly to the nearest city and buy some Gruyère, Cheddar and Parmesan. It is altogether worthy of the effort. 

1 cup milk
4 tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter
3 eggs, separated
1/2 tsp salt
3 cloves garlic
Spices or herbs of your choice
Olive Oil for greasing 

So to begin with, find the most beautiful deep dish round 6 cup bowl that you can get your hands on.  If yours is a Tupperware Plastic powered household like mine, use any large dish of your choice that is bake proof and is sufficiently deep.

Grease it with some olive oil and coat well with the 4 tbsp of flour.

Place a saucepan on the flame and add the butter.

When the butter has melted, tip over the left over flour from the floured baking dish. You should have approximately 3 tbsp of this.

Whisk until mixture begins to foam and loses raw taste, about 3 minutes (do not allow mixture to brown).

Pour in warm milk, whisking until smooth, and cook until very thick, 2 to 3 minutes.

Now you can add the garlic and the herbs or spices of your choice. I added curry powder, about a tsp and a pinch of nutmeg.

Add the cheese now and let it melt. Please make sure that you grate the cheese I was too lazy and I didn't bother to do that and what ensued was a  lot of lumps that I had to later whip out! More work is no good!

When the cheese has melted and what stands before you is a cohesive mixture with a velvety texture and the smell of gloriousness, turn off the heat.

Take the egg yolks and add a tbsp of the cheese mixture and stir to a tizzy to incorporate the mixture quick enough so that the eggs don't scramble.

Do this a couple more times until you feel that the heat has evened out and then add the egg mixture to the main cheese mixture.

Stir vigorously until everything has incorporated well or until you feel your arms starting to fall off, whichever happens first.

Let it cool to a lukewarm.

Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites in another large bowl until stiff but not dry. This is my favourite part - totally magic - to whip up the runny mucus like egg whites to beautiful gossamer peaks of snow.

Now take a deep breath and patiently, with a spatula, fold in the cheese-yolk mixture into the egg whites, taking care that the airiness is not compromised. (It sounds so important right? That's because it is!)

 Now transfer the mixture into the prepared bowl and bake in an oven preheated to 375 F for about half an hour.

You will know when the souffle is done. It will have risen to a considerable height and will stand as proud as a golden breasted pheasant!

You can see it rise in these pictures, provided you overlook the really bad photography!

Make sure that the door is not opened in the first 20 minutes at least.

Take out the souffle and serve immediately with a salad, and later, with some jam. On second thought, you should avoid the jam association if you are not a mad cap like me. But if you are, go wild with the souffle. It will be an empty palette for you to slather paint on.

I think it is critical that some sort of salad is served with the souffle because you need something to cut the heaviness of the cheese. (Tomato jam serves the same purpose actually!)

But for the salad we made, you will need

4 tomatoes
1 green pepper
2 tsp curd
2 tsp olive oil
a dash of curry powder
a pinch of basil
2 cloves of garlic
salt and pepper to taste

Chop up the tomatoes and the green pepper.

To make the dressing, take the oil in a bowl and add the curry, basil, garlic, salt and pepper.

Add the curd and whip.

 Add to the vegetables and serve fresh.

Kaushalya says 'Yenjoi'!

All in a line

To prove its might to the mighty sun
The cloud came down and blocked the ray.
I looked up at the sky above
A lone cloud stood amidst the grey.

Peeved that just a little cloud
Could hide the strong and powerful sun
The sun decides to cast its glare
And shatter the clouds into endless rain.

But ignorance is not bliss
For too long in this game.
While the sun revelled in the cloud it burst
A new cloud formed and took its place.

And day and night
Went on their game of might.

My manna called jam

I love food.

I make no bones about it! (Ho ho! Good one huh?!!!)

It's one of the first things you notice about me, (and I am not talking about the judgement you will be compelled to make after just looking at me).

I am constantly eating.

I am constantly talking about food.

I am constantly reading food blogs.

I am constantly buying and reading cookbooks.

Whenever someone needs a place recommended for a dinner out, they call me. This has been true of Bombay and Chennai - I usually know more about the restaurants in a city than most other people do.

The biggest portion of my salary was always spent on dining out.

Now that I am home, I spent a lot of time cooking. Or trying to cook. Or trying to learn how to cook. (We are talking about the process here, not the result.)

One of my favourite things to cook is jam, and there are many reasons why.

1. Jam is fruits and sugar - it is hard to screw that up. I have found that I need conveniences like this when it comes to cooking.

2. When the Bible talks about 'Manna', I am convinced that it was referring to jam. It can sweeten any palate and it will taste good with everything. EVERYTHING! Yesterday, I ate cheese souffle doused in jam and it was better than everything else I ate on the day, including the cheese souffle sans the jam.

3. It is so fun to make jam - such a stress buster! And the stirring action is the secret of whatever muscle tone I have on my arms.

4.It is one of the few things that taste awesome right from the beginning to the end of the cooking process. (I suspect that the reason I make a mess out of a lot of things I cook is my hesitation to keep tasting it during the cooking process. For me, there must be something compelling in it to taste boiling hot food! Raw pasta in salty water just doesn't cut it for me. Fruit reveling in sugar and lime does.)

5. Have you eaten bread crumbs, pliant butter and jam bits off a pot in which the jam was cooked. God decided to give us the gift of taste after he himself scraped out jam bits off the side of a jam pot, swirled it around with melted butter and soft bread and immersed himself in its sublime taste. That's when he realized that if he didn't share it, it might be the beginning of a new kind of sin.

So yesterday, as a homage to God and his kind gift to mankind, I decided to make a batch of tomato jam.

I love jam, but with tomato jam, I share a special kind of relationship, because that is how good it tastes.My grandmother used to make it for us when my brother and I were little and how we used to devour it!We used to spread it on everything - bread, biscuits, bananas, cakes, omelettes, tomatoes... Ok... I used to spread it on tomatoes. Happy?

Yesterday was the first time I attempted to make it and it tasted so darn good and it was so simple to make.

And I totally didn't screw it up. :)

Here's how you can make it.

You need

500 gms ripe tomatoes
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1 tsp ginger juice

First you need to chop the tomatoes into tiny pieces and then leave it to macerate in the sugar.

Add the ginger juice as well and this time, and stir to combine everything. Watch in amazement as the sugar draws out the water from the tomatoes and magically, the amount of water increases about trifold.

Now go watch an episode of Desperate Housewives. You have deserved it for your earnest sincerity to the cause of good food.

When you are done with the show and your spirit and soul has been sufficiently nourished, get back to nourish your tummy, and add the lime juice. Pour this mixture into a pot and cook it over a low flame, stirring continuously.

If you see any scum on top, skim it off onto a slice of buttered bread and chomp on it. Go on. Do it. This selfless act is critical for the well-being of the jam.

Also don't forget to taste the jam every two minutes for doneness. There should be no hesitation or guilt in doing this. This action too, is solely for the well-being for the jam.

After about half an hour, you will see that the jam has become considerably thicker. Keep stirring and cooking until you think it has reach a desirable consistency, and then turn off the heat.

Allow it to cool and then transfer into a sterilized jar.

Now is the time for you to scrape off the pot with your buttered fingers.

Enjoy the jam with, on and in anything and everything.

A woman named Mercedes

Mercedes Fittipaldi is my find of the day.

I know nothing about her because all her writing is in a foreign language (excuse my ignorance), but in her Flickr profile, she says she is from Argentina and that she currently is in España, so that's a clue!

I have been obsessing about her the whole day.

I have combed through her website thrice over and have 'favourited' almost all her pictures in Flickr.

I have scoured the web and saved all the pictures that are saveable.

I feel so content now that I think I am ready to die!

There is no picture that I want to post here that I think would represent or do justice to her body of work.

Each is better than the preceding work whether you go in forward or reverse order.

Check out her Flickr stream and you be over awed.

Check out her website and you will fall in love.

Search for her images on google and you will feel that your life has been fulfilled.

How is it that some people are able to work magic with the same material available to one and all?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

D for Doggie

It's way past monday and I'm late for Tatterbeans' 'The ABC'.

Note 1: Now that A, B and C are over, I wonder if she will start calling them D mondays or E mondays and so forth :)

Note 2: Of course I am being silly. Read this.

And D is for Dogs of course! Do you even need to ask!!!!

I love dogs.

I can talk about dogs all day and when I go to bed, still dream about them and be happy.

My ideal day would be with a dog and a book.

I can own ten dogs and look after them without thinking it's too much.

A reason I want to have my own home is so I can get a dog.

I love dogs, did I tell you that?

This is Sasha, Max and Judy.

The live in my father's house in a land far far away and you can read all about them here.

And then go to a pound and adopt a puppy and name it after me.

That's all for now folks!

Have a good day.

It's all relative

I am more silly than I am wise.

Message for Valentine's Day

“Love . . . bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”  I Corinthians 13:4-7

The apostle is looking for a ribbon to wrap around one of the sweetest paragraphs in Scripture. I envision the leathery-faced saint pausing in his dictation . . . Checking off his fingers, he reviews his list. “Let’s see, patience, kindness, envy, arrogance. We’ve mentioned rudeness, selfishness and anger, forgiveness, evil, and truth. Have I covered all things? Ah, that’s it—all things. Here, write this down. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”

- Max Lucado

Tales of wonder and tales of glory

Swami Vivekananda says Howdy! all the way from Kanyakumari, way down in the South of India.
So I just got back from Kanyakumari, the veritable land's end of India.

See. Land ends. Water begins!

Now Kanyakumari (which literally translates to Virgin Woman) is uber cool because it is here that the Indian landmass peters out to a mere point and then disappears into the ocean. And the ocean is not one, but three that meet together - The Indian Ocean, the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. It's a trippy place to say the least.

But the most fascinating thing about KK is this.

Legend has it that Kanya Devi, an avatar of the Hindu Goddess Parvati, was to marry Lord Siva, but as he failed to show up on his wedding day, the rice and other grains meant for the wedding feast remained uncooked and unused thereafter. The uncooked grains turned into stones as time went by and some believe that the small stones which look like rice on the shore today, are indeed grains of the wedding that was never solemnized.  And Kanya Devi became a virgin goddess. What a biography huh? There is a huge temple right on the shore where this Goddess is worshipped and this temple is believed to be 4000 - 5000 years old.

And right outside the temple was this adorable little parrot called Meenakshi who picks out fortunes from a deck if you tell her your name.

Actually, there is a guy with the parrot who orchestrates the whole thing but that doesn't take away from the awesomeness!

This is my friend Kaushalya. She is a superstar with many avatars and even more arms. If you want to meet her, please email me.

She can regale you with stories of angels and faeries and goddesses and gnomes. Or she can teach you how to make a mean cheese souffle if that is more up your alley. Like I said, she has way too many arms, just like Goddess Parvati does.

 So when Kaushalya got her reading done, I photographed Meenakshi at work.

First, the man asks for your name and then he puts the parrot next to the card and tells her to pick a fortune.

Meenakshi now sorts through the card one by one until she finds the appropriate one and the man picks it out.

Then he asks the parrot if she's sure 3 times and she has to caw all three times.

Otherwise, the process is repeated.

It is all very scientific and clinical and reliable, you see.

And then the parrot's work is done.

The man reads out the fortune and all's well with the world again with the foretelling of yet another's good fortune at the hands of a blessed bird.

Isn't she pretty?

Yikes! I better stop. She has started morphing into Miss Havisham from Great Expectations!

So then we go off our way and look who we chance upon! A butcher, a baker and a candlestick maker! Veritably so.

Ok. Maybe not. But these people are equally fancy.

Look at this boy. His elfness exudes from every pore.

And his greatest delight is in making this baby cry.

Look at her! Isn't she the most adorable thing ever! She looks like a little froggie baby. And I positively mean no offense of that! She is really adorable.

But look at the boy again and sigh!

Feel your heart melt and your soul join in union with the universe. Take a deep breath and look again.

I dare you to not feel the oneness!

Exercise one over.

Now look at this granny.

She has history etched on each wrinkle of her leathery skin. (Again I mean no offense! I would love to look like her at the age of 120.)

And then we walked on and saw this.

And this lone boat was rocking itself to the lullaby of the ocean.

Now stare at this picture and imagine yourself as the boat, locking up and down, back and forth, up and down and back and forth. Quietly, gently and in rhythm. Continue until you become enlightened or feel dizzy, whichever happens first.

Exercise two over.

And then we had lunch and a dessert of this.

 It was the first time in my life that I felt that I was super hot and I will be eternally grateful to Kanya Devi for that!

Over and out, says Swami Vivekananda