Friday, November 16, 2012

Books and openings

Friday nights - the best nights for a date with a horror/mystery movie/book. I have some interesting movies/books lined up and can't wait to devour them. Now to the next prompt:

Talk about the opening of your favorite book.

I had three answers pop in my head as soon as I read the prompt. Yeah, you guessed it right, I don't have one, but three most favorite books and a lot of close seconds! So, I did some pattern searching and found that most of my favorite books had lush natural scene descriptions as the opening for the books. Some of them were Ponniyin Selvan (all five books) , Anne of Green Gables (and other books in the series). Or they described something very ordinary in life in the first couple of pages (read Agatha Christie novels, Anuthama novels and more). Of these, I love the nature descriptions best because they encourage me to imagine right from the start and make me get into the book pretty quickly. Its harder with ordinary life descriptions since I start comparing it with the experiences I've had in life. 

Talking about the opening of one book, my best choice would be Ponniyin Selvan - Kalki has done an amazing job of it and I literally experienced what the hero Vandhiya Thevan sitting atop his horse across the Veera Narayana Eri experienced. I read it 15 years back but the experience is still so fresh. I guess that is the mark of a great author! 

Also, Anne of Green Gables' opening is worth a mention! I was able to imagine Green Gables and the White way of Delight and the Lake of Shining Waters without any issues at all - though not as impactful as Kalki's, this one was sweet in its own subtle way. Sadly, I haven't read any other author  (including my favorite JK Rowling or Arthur Conan Doyle or Michael Crichton) that has had such a powerful impact. Even other books by the same authors haven't had this impact - Sivagamiyin Sabatham and Parthiban Kanavu were way more disappointing to me since I had a very threshold for Kalki and other Anne books never touched me as much as the first one did. Even though I like Naindha Ullam, I'd have loved it more if Anuthama had spoken about Sri Lanka and the beauty of those places before jumping into the dynamics around Mythreyi. But I'll take Anuthama any day even if it doesn't explain about the natural scenes as much I want. :)

What is your favorite book's opening? And any recommendations for books to read?

Library lock up

Doing two posts a day is getting to be interesting and fun. The weekend is already off to a good start - I have a list of things to do this weekend and am going to turn it into a game to see how much I can do :) Now onto the next prompt:

If you had to get locked in some place (book store, amusement park, etc) overnight alone, where would you choose to be locked in?

This one was super easy: the library or the book store. I can read to my heart's content, use the library's computers to be online (and connected to the outside world), use the vending machines if I get hungry, use the restrooms and the sofas/comfortable chairs if I need them, not be worried too much about any noise since the library is usually pretty quiet, etc etc. My basic needs of food, water, shelter and connectedness are met - so the library would be an awesome choice (btw, I have another free writing post idea: where is the best place to hide from zombies? keep thinking and I'll come back with answers soon!) Also, a well stocked five star hotel can be a close second choice but the movie 'The Shining' makes me think an empty hotel is actually weird. I think I would go for my home as the second best choice :) The library still trumps it since it has a lot of books to read and is a public space (which is one of the implicit conditions of this prompt, me thinks) and hits all my requirements perfectly.

I was super curious about the next prompt since the last two were somewhat challenging and I didn't have clear answers to them even though they were easy. This one being a no-brainer pushes it more towards the easy part :) 

What would be your ideal place for an overnight stay?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Haunted Dreams

I just realized that I had not only caught up to the prompt blogging but also would be crossing it today with the next prompt. Yay to that! :) I'll take it! Here is the next prompt:

Would you buy your dream house if the price was right BUT you also were told it was inhabited by ghosts?

This is an interesting question. My first thought was yes, I would buy it since I don't believe in ghosts (no one I know personally have seen ghosts). But on further thought, I would be living with my family in my dream house (otherwise, there is no point buying that dream house) and wouldn't want them to be harmed by anything, imagined ghosts or otherwise. So my answer would be: it depends. If it was a friendly/harmless ghost or a ghost that can be removed from that place (anyone watched Malayalam movies with lot of tantrik tricks to remove ghosts from someone or some place?), then I might risk it. But if was something with a sinister past, then ghost or no ghost, I'm not getting that place. I don't want to stay in a place that has a bad past - that is pure ill luck. I know loads of people don't mind it and I definitely wouldn't know if something bad happened in the house I live, say, a hundred years before. So I might already be living in one. But living in a place where you know someone was murdered or tortured enough to become a ghost is super icky and gross. 

Also, call it watching too many bad tantra/mantra movies but I'm kind of wary of irritating anything not human (good or bad). I definitely don't know how people and non-people beings work with one another and don't wish to do anything that might put me or my loved ones in danger - guess its the better safe than sorry attitude. But I'd take that any day to risking it foolishly and losing it all. 
What would you do?

PS: It was funny how one of my friends said he'll buy the house and rent it out - that way, he gets to keep the dream house and others get to deal with the bad ghosts. That is an interesting thought but I believe Karma too much to actually do something like that! 


Busy day but loved it! :) Finally going to start coding soon!! No more of these meetings and discussions.. Here is the next prompt:

Tell us about your favorite pet.

My favorite pet is Jimmy (our dog). Even though I've never touched him nor played with him, he is super special to me. I love getting special treats from US for him and Jerry (my cousin's dog) and pampering him with food whenever I'm home. His white coat and loving eyes are really pretty. The way he ensures that he is the center of attention is very comical. And the way he gets jealous and bothered if my dad favors us, his daughters, is endearing. He even won over my mom's heart with his antics. But he is the laziest dog ever seen. Sadly, Jimmy is no longer with us - may his soul rest in peace! I still can't see a labrador without remembering him. Guess he is the only dog I call using 'he' or 'she'. All other dogs are 'it' to me. Though I was super afraid of him (and dogs in general), he made sure he never alarmed me - quite surprising for a dog! So, hugs to you Jimmy. Thanks a lot for understanding my fear and making sure I felt comfortable with you. May you have loads of fun in dog heaven! :) 

What is your favorite pet? Leave in comments.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Meal time!

I'm trying to do two posts today - just to see if this idea would work and let me catch up to the 30 day post challenge. Here is the next prompt:

Tell us about the best meal you ever cooked.

Funny, I cook a lot of meals but there is never one meal that I'm especially proud of - simply because I haven't cooked that many meals that are very significant. Most have been meals for me and H, me and roomies, etc that was daily fare. But there are these dishes that you remember with superb clarity because you made them for someone special and their appreciation of it takes the simple dish to a new height. First, the Maggie that I did when in fourth grade - I still remember the happiness that came with it when my sister commented it was better than my mom's maggie (I suspect that the facts that she was starving and that the maggie was decently good made her declare so). Second, the first time I cooked pasta in US (I hadn't made a single good meal in US till then and the spicy hot pasta seemed too good to have been made by me). Third, the cookies that I made in Rain city (still remember the looks and comments from my friends appreciating it). Fourth, the egg curry that I made for my dad in India in a few minutes ( he super loved it and made sure to tell one and all that I was a whiz at cooking - which I'm not but I was super glad to have made something special for him in a matter of minutes) and finally, the full meals I cook with H ( those times are super fun irrespective of what we are cooking). The vadais and payasams I've made till date get special mentions in this list :) 

Now I've gotten super hungry writing this post.. Off to dinner!

Do leave a comment about your best meal cooked!


Today was way less work compared to the past two days - but then its the next day of Deepavali! Belated Diwali wishes, everyone! Btw, I did the math.. if I wanted to finish 30 posts and I'm already lagging behind, I might have to do two posts on a couple of days. Thinking if it is a good idea to do so. I'm pretty sure it would be fun since the topics are predecided - and it would mean I get to finish the prompt ones soon and then spend time writing the free writing ones later in November. Marching onto the next prompt:

What is the bravest thing you've ever done?

Not sure if not being too afraid of dogs is counted as bravery! On a more serious note, I've not encountered too many things in life that required extraordinary bravery - I've had a life that is very similar to thousands of Indians. I grew up with a happy childhood, good schools, college life, masters and now marriage! So, I'm not really sure if there is one thing that is really brave and out of ordinary. That said, I really don't fear animals (except dogs) or ghosts too much. This might be because I tend not to cross their path nor they mine. I also don't fear too much before doing something different - I'm up for a lot of challenges (read skydiving, rafting, ziplining, car racing, new food, adventures, hobbies, etc)  but generally make sure I have a couple of back up plans if something gets screwed up. Guess that is brave of me since I see a lot of people don't experiment a lot with all that the world has to offer. This is the first prompt that had me stumped for some time. Hope I did justice to the prompt.

What has been the bravest thing you've ever done? Do share it in the comments. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Places to blog

Phew! Another tiring day - today was filled with A LOT OF meetings and discussions. I wish we'd just start coding already - and I can see my wish coming true soon! Now, onto the next prompt:

Where is your favorite place to blog?

In a cozy corner in a busy coffee place surrounded by friends and acquaintances all drinking coffee in companionable silence and working on their own stuff creating myriad things.... Ok! I so wish I can give that answer. But usually I'm either in the mood for writing when I wind down for the day or sit at the computer to do something else and end up writing blog posts. Rarely do I block time to write (even though I've heard most actual writers do it to get work done) and I guess that is why I really don't write detailed researched posts - I instead write what I think of at that moment (that reminds me! I have to write why I blog and what I like about blogging - great free writing topics :D ) and that suits me fine at this point. I digress...

Back to the place - it ends up being my couch or bed depending on the time of the day - I prefer writing in the bed because I can finish a post and go to sleep on a high note :)

How about you? Where do you prefer to blog from?

Monday, November 12, 2012

What would you change?

Been a long day at work!! I met someone today who kind of has a lot in common with my future self - super excited to be talking to her :) Also, I plan to make it a 30 day post in NaBloPoMo challenge instead of doing only the prompts since I just read the whole damn thing where it says weekends are for free writing - but I'll do the free writing part later in the month (I know! I can't seem to break this habit of not reading anything completely - seems to follow from college exam days :P) Here is the next prompt:

If you could change one thing about your life right now, what would it be?

What else other than making sure H has lesser travel than now? :| Sigh! Sadly that is out of my control! I so wish he didn't have to do long trips so often - though logically I understand why he has to do them, I can't seem to get used to the idea that there is no one when I come back home ( and trust me, TV and movies and internet get really boring after sometime). I've always had someone or the other home when I come back from school, college or work - it was either parents or grandparents or roomies or H at home. And coming back to an empty place is kind of weird. Hats off to those who can do it day in and day out! My mom says I should keep myself occupied to not feel it too much - so I've decided to clean up some mystery boxes at home that we've not unpacked since we moved a couple of months back and to make sure to finish some of the art work (hello, paints and brushes and needles and threads) that I had started back in.... well, never mind, long time back. Now, off to the mystery boxes!

Do leave a comment about the one thing you would change in your life right now!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Ideal job

I've been reading more blogs and posts during this NaBloPoMo month-long event. I found a couple of interesting blogs to follow and I'm super surprised and excited about the number and quality of blogs compared to six years ago when I started blogging. But I also see that a LOT of bloggers that I used to follow in the past six years have stopped writing (their blogs are dormant > 6 months) due to work, life, kids, any personal reason. Blog world needs some serious attention now. Now, on to the next prompt:

If you could have any job (and instantly have the training and qualifications to do it), which job would you want?

The job that I'm currently doing... hands down! Unlike lots of people that I know, I chose Electronics and Computer Engineering in particular after considering all the pros and cons of different careers. I might have become a corporate psychologist (I still dream about it at times!) but I know that I wouldn't really be happy unless I'm creating something and can't stand listening to people's problems all day since I have the bad habit of worrying for them. This would be detrimental to my life and stress me way too much that the fun of connecting with people would be gone. 

I once read that people should really live their lives assuming that that is their last day - even though I don't follow it to the ideal state I want to, I pretty much won't change 90% of things in my day-day life. Sure, I would like it if I can have my parents and relatives close by, have more sun in the Rain city and work out more, but these are conscious choices I make and don't regret it. I try and make up for the first by spending a lot of time over phone or skype with them and try to enjoy as much sun as possible when it is out. As for the last one, I'm super lazy and am perfectly happy with it. Its my one thing I love cribbing about and not working on :P

Still what is life without some goals? If there was a position that I would love to see myself in, it would be as an entrepreneur/executive. Though both are very tempting and exciting and different from each other, I'm still not sure of the path I want to take and am perfectly happy not doing either. They are the icing on the cake and I'm more interested in the cake itself. So, I would like to lead a large company (mine!). If I can instantly have the training, qualifications and opportunities for it, then I would definitely take it. Now, can I have it, pretty please?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Couple compliments

Things have been busy at work and home in Neverland. H left for work to Sun city - and won't be back for a month or more. Yeah! he'd be missing some of our firsts :( Boo! But then, this is part of what we signed up when we decided to get married... and ended up spending some seriously good time together all last week. So I've regressed on the one post a day challenge but it was worth it. Also work is getting busier - on a positive side, I won't miss him too much :P

Now that excuses are done with, here is the next one on the list:

Talk about the last compliment you received.

I don't exactly remember the last compliment I got (guess its the shoe lady at the mall who complimented me on my heels) but will write about the last one we received as a couple (I know! I'm all gloomy after H left - well, a girl can feel justifiably sad for a couple of hours! I'm just following tradition, you see!). It was from some random lady who saw H and me at the park and said we were perfect as a couple :) I was pleasantly surprised to hear it because we were just walking around the park and talking about the hundred and one things that were on our list ( I never run out of topics when talking to H! Guess I'm covered for entertainment at old age :P ) and hadn't noticed much anyone else at the park - and then there was this lady who was walking her two huge golden retrievers. She passed us twice and on the third time, remarked how perfect we looked together!! We've received this compliment at different times from different people, mostly strangers that come up to us to tell us we look good and happy together. Every time I hear it, it totally makes my day!! And glad that I live in a place where strangers take time to come and tell us so... I've not heard many incidents back home where total strangers compliment someone. Well, anything to make our days brighter :)

Now, if you excuse me, I'll go back to watching some chick flicks and eating takeout chinese and cleaning up a messy home and enjoying pseudo single life for a month or so. Gonna give the married self some rest and get back to friends, books, shopping, music and more! Here's to pseudo singledom!