Pic of the decade

Nita Ambani celebrates as she is lifted by Harbhajan Singh of the Indians after defeating the Challengers during the 2010 DLF Indian Premier League T20 semi final match between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore played at DY Patil Stadium on April 21, 2010 in Navi Mumbai, India. Nita Ambani owns Mumbai Indians franchise. (Photo: IPL2010/Getty Images)


24.02.2010 Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, the God of cricket, the unstoppable, the invincible, the ageless, yet again creates history. The only batsman to score a double ton in an ODI. At an age when others conveniently call it a day, Sachin at just two months short of 37, is uncontainable. The remarkable record was created by him in Gwalior while playing against South Africa, surpassing the previous record of 194 by Saeed Anwar. What the final score was, who finally won remains insignificant against such a monumental achievement.

Sachin Tendulkar

God thanking God. Pic courtesy: Punit Paranjpe/Reuters

I had twitter to look upto for exact scores, it was almost ball by ball commentary by around 2000 ecstatic tweeple all over India. Although most of the live streaming were dead by the time Sachin was about to touch the elusive, I was lucky to capture the moment on one of the links. The euphoria was as of never before, the frenzy was maddening and thanks to the maniacal congregation, I did not miss the way I used to watch cricket together with folks back  home, roaring.

Would like to share some lovely tweets from the twitterati done in the honour of Sachin. Enjoy.

  • @Riteishd: Am praying for sachin’s double century. Ganpati bappa morya…
  • @chitraraj #sachinisgod #sachin tendulkar #sachin‘s ..same name trending 3/10 has never been in the history of twitter
  • @chitraraj: O Sachin To Thee I Pray, Increase my knowledge day by day #sachinisgod
  • @arjunvj: Reducing the number of atheists in India since 1989 – Sachin Tendulkar!
  • @sumit_kagrawal SACHIN TENDULKAR isn’t GOD… GOD is Sachin Tendulkar…
  • @sagarikaghose: Bharat Ratna for Sachin tendulkar!
  • @AshikOnFire: lo meri office ka ek table ek bande ne tod diya chadh gaya table k upar or nachne laga tha #Sachin
  • @AshikOnFire: Do we really need to prove to the world tht we r here n force to reckon, jus one man can make whole diff, we r billion plus. #sachin
  • @IshanManjrekar: Finally a 13 year old record which was set against India is broken by an Indian #SachinIsGod
  • @OmkarDash : 3/10 topics on twitter are dedicted to Sachin! This is history! Not even obama could do it! Not even apple or google!
  • @raghuonrails: I think India should have a 200 rupees note now with Sachin embossed on it #sachinisgod

Finally, I shall not write about the endless achievements of the master blaster, the legend, we all know it. I only want to express my state which is at its elevated best today, so thank you Sachin. I only want to thank Sachin’s parents for giving us the God of cricket. I only want to thank God for giving me the opportunity to live in the era when Sachin performs magic with his willow. I only want to say that I feel proud that he is an Indian.

We salute you Sachin. Take a bow.

As Sunil Gavaskar said ‘I want to touch Sachin’s feet’.

Tweets courtesy: Riteish Deshmukh, Abhishek Bachchan, Sagarika Ghosh, Arjun V J, Sumit Kumar Agrawal, Ashik Gosaliya, Ishan Manjrekar, Omkar Dash & Raghu

Mile Sur Mera Tumhara

Hello all. Happy Republic Day to all indians.

Sitting far away from India, but I can still feel the heat of patriotism which is flowing all across the country today in everybody’s hearts, in words, in fervour it reaches me via vibrations, thanks to various sources. Was feeling very touched to read messages regarding of unity, love and brotherhood being a rare sight these days. Got to also know that the new version of Mile Sur Mera Tumhara was telecasted today on Indian television. The original one was some two decades back was released in 1988 on Independence day. The song is meant to reflect unity and integrity amongst indians and had become an instant rage then and it still resonates in everybody’s mind really fresh even after so many years. So was very much looking forward to see the new rendition. Read a lot of great reviews about it and some not so were the ones who were comparing it with the older version.

Something which is recreated 20 yrs thence will need to have the flavour of the moment, must reverberate with contemporary vibrations, fragrance has to be of today’s, and the intentions just the same with the soul unimpaired.  I’m glad all those additives were satisfactorily taken care of. Anything new or a remake is always made with the intention of presenting something of the same subject but on a new canvas. The canvas will be dealt and empowered with new brushes, new techniques, new technologies, new faces with new intelligence. All served keeping in mind the audience is exceptional, modern, avant-garde, progressive.

The original song featured icons like Amitabh Bachchan, Lata Mangeshkar, Kamal Hassan, Balamuralikrishna, Prakash Padukone, Hema Malini, Sharmila Tagore the new version also has Amitabh Bachchan and the rest are A R Rahman (playing fingerboard), Shankar Ehsaan Loy, Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and his sons, Sivamani (playing the beats on water was fantastic), Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Shilpa Shetty, Deepika Padukone (loved it as she was shown in a modern dress to represent today’s youth), southern superstars Surya, Vikram, Mamootty, Rituparna Sen, Prosenjit, Bhaichang Bhutia, Olympians Abhinav Bindra, Vijendra Singh and Sushil Kumar.

To sum it up I simply loved it, had goose-bumps, was teary eyed. So kudos to all the people who featured and made this possible, those who conceptualized, and a pat on the back to Kailash Surendranath.

Want to share the video with you all. Just feel it.

PS: Felt may be more sportspersons (Sachin, Dravid, Sania??) should have been included. Thought it was more bollywoodized. Would like you to please take the poll on the right column before you leave tks.

New one Mile Sur Mera Tumhara (2010) in two parts

Old one Mile Sur Mera Tumhara (1988)

Black or White

There are only few somethings besides sports, that I watch on German television ever since I came here in 2006 – Deutschland sucht den Superstar, Popstars, Schlag den Raab and the favourite being Germany’s Next Top Model by Heidi Klum. With the onset of the new year, excited that new season episodes will soon take-off.


Sara Nuru

Last years’ Germany’s Next Top Model by Heidi Klum show was very special and gave a surprise winner in Sara Nuru, a stunning 19 yr old model whose parents had migrated from Ethiopia. It was great to see how a black woman beat all her white co-contestants with ease and confidence and how she had emerged absolutely deserving and was befittingly encouraged by the judges and the viewers.

I don’t have to wonder whether a girl with dark complexion will ever make it to top or even find an entry in any in beauty contests that are held in India. In a country where female foeticide is still prevalent, if the complexion is dark can be a life-long curse, in certain parts especially North. Everyone wants a fairer counterpart. In the matrimonial sections of newspapers, there are even special columns ‘gori brides’. To accentuate, markets are full of fairness creams which promises fair complexion that too within 10 days. What do you call such observance? Racism. Period. We Indians cry racism at the slightest instance, but we treat our own fellow shaded complexion, abominably. I am not even getting into the caste system here and its conduct in Hindu religion, which still exists throughout the country.

In Europe, there are no fairness creams or bleaching agents. They love to get tan, sun-tan studios are in each and every city. People spend hours and money to get that desired dusky appearance. Has anyone ever heard of any Indian getting married to a black-American or an African? Sorry, I haven’t. Whereas, you see so many blacks with germans as couples with beautiful hybrid kids. Supermodel Heidi Klum herself married a black-American, the legendary singer Seal.

It’s great to see so many non-whites finding their place with due respects out here. The top league singer is an Indian- Xavier Naidoo. Bruce Darnell, my favourite celebrity, a choreographer is a black-American. Colin Fernandes, VJ, is an Indian. Nadja Abd El Farrag, ex-wife of Dieter Bohlen, is a Sudanese. Boris Becker’s ex-wife Barbara was an African-American.

There’s a lot one can learn from the west (especially germans) on how to respect human beings regardless of colour. For that, to begin with, you have to free your mind. Look beyond the surface. Then go deeper, reach the soul. Then unlearn yourself. Because – (Racial superiority is a mere pigment of the imagination. ~Author Unknown)

2009: The Year That Was

Here’s the year round up as I saw, felt. There have been countless news that made headlines but I would shall recall only those which mattered to me or the ones I followed. So here I go in no such order of importance.

  • slumdog millionaireSlumdog Millionaire directed by Danny Boyle won 8 Oscars. Set and filmed in India, the film tells the story of a young man from the slums of Mumbai who appears on the Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? (Kaun Banega Crorepati in the Hindi version) and exceeds people’s expectations, thereby arousing the suspicions of the game show host and of law enforcement officials. The film won 93 more awards this year. Personally too I liked the movie but haven’t yet felt the urge to watch it again.
  • A R RahmanA R Rahman, the king of Indian music industry, the legend in making also won 2 Oscars for his music and song ‘Jai Ho’. Personally not my favourite, I love any and all other creations of his.
  • ObamaBarack Obama gets Nobel Peace Prize less than nine months into his eventful presidency, was an unexpected honor that elicited praise and puzzlement around the globe. Normally the prize has been presented, even controversially, for accomplishments. This prize, to a 48-year-old freshman president, for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples,” Mahatma Gandhi spent his whole life serving for mankind, preaching non-violence and fought for our freedom, did not receive none.
    Here want you to enjoy some tweets which ran on twitter just following the announcement:
  • awarded the Nobel Peace Prize after wishing for World Peace. He narrowly beat out Miss Japan, Miss Brazil & Miss Spain
  • In honor of President Obama, the “Nobel Peace Prize” to be renamed “Failed Olympic Bid Consolation Prize”
  • Why doesn’t everyone just STFU & let President Obama be great!
  • BREAKING NEWS! Obama cures ALL cancers by simply asking them to go away!
  • Swedish Psychics predict President Obama will eventually earn Nobel Peace Prize, so they award it to him early. Dalai Lama kicking his heels.
  • Dear President Obama, make sure you keep an eye out for Kanye when you are accepting your Nobel Peace Prize
  • MJMichael Jackson’s death was a global shock. On June 25, 2009, aged 50, Jackson collapsed at his rented apartment in Los Angeles. Attempts at resuscitating him by his personal physician were unsuccessful and within minutes he was pronounced death. His controversial life brought him miseries and bankruptcy towards the end, in loneliness he sort to drugs and got addicted to painkillers. For me, no musician is greater than him and I am proud to be born in the life and times of him. Yet to watch ‘This Is It’. Have to soon. Want to dedicate one my favourite song to all to end this year.
  • FedererRoger Federer did it. First, he won the elusive French Open beating Robin Soderling and then got his 15th Grand Slam singles title by winning Wimbledon beating Andy Roddick making him the only male tennis player and ranked number one to achieve this glory. Besides he married his long time girlfriend Mirka and also became proud father of twin daughters. So a big congratulations to The Roger Federer..we pray for more and more Grand Slams titles to come your way.
  • TigerTiger woods. Towards the yearend no one could imagine that we would have to hear such a heart breaking news of one of the greatest sportsman ever, world No 1, most successful golfer of all time and not the least the highest paid professional. World came shattering when his wife Elin Nordegren found about his affair with a nightclub manager and the press hasn’t been sparing him eversince then resulting in opening of the pandora box with exposure of around 14 mistresses, losing almost all his sponsors, losing his flawless reputation, and now an impending divorce. I still salute his achievements as I never respected him in first place for his relationship with his wife and others but for his inimitable golfing talents.
  • GoodyJade Goody: Yes I was following her news since she was in Celebrity Big Brother which made headlines she was evicted after being accused of racist bullying against Shilpa Shetty. Goody then as a mark of repentance or apology she entered the Indian version Bigg Boss in 2008 which is where, hell broke on her when her doctor unfolded the news of her cervical cancer and that she was to live only for few months. She died on the Mothers Day leaving her two sons behind. Shilpa kahin vish kanya to nahi..jo use haani pahunchaayega raakh ho jaega..lol Joke tha.
  • attacksViolent attacks on Indian students in Australia: Was a bothering issue which came up this year where atleast 100 attacks were reported, no count on the ones which went unreported. The unrealistic figure certainly forces us to believe that there is a racial angle to all this. Or else, prove it. If not anything else, all this could have serious repercussions on the Australian education industry. Learn from France, they are encouraging more and more Indian students to come over.
  • mumbai terror26/11 first anniversary: Terror attacks on India. Mumbai was the target point just an year ago in 2008. Millions watch the carnage helplessly when serial bomb explosions rocked Mumbai. Explosions mainly carried out at Taj Mahal hotel, CST railway station, Nariman house, left hundreds dead and wounded. First anniversary ran us through the ill-fated day once again and we prayed for hope in peace. The only living suspect Kasab is still undergoing trial and to keep him alive till today took 34 crores have been spent. Dossiers exchanging is all that we saw.
  • KCRAndhra Pradesh division. The demand for Telangana as a state has been since 1964 but it got aggressive when K Chandrasekhar Rao went on hunger strike and Congress decided to give in by showing green signal on the 11th day. This decision was immediately protested all over the country and many more such demands of Gorkhaland, Bundelkhand, Harit Pradesh and so on erupted only to force Govt to immediately take a step backwards and put the matter in a limbo. Such developments reinforces our deduction of such myopic leaders who think haughtily not anticipating the aftermath that could stir in breaking the whatever little solidarity which is remaining of India (if at all).
  • fluSwine flu, a pandemic with its global outbreak has claimed many lives and is still spreading over all and as per prediction it shall engulf almost one-thirds of the world by the coming year. Tommy Hass, Sreesanth, Narendra Modi being prominents to have got infected and cured. Remember to wash your hands profusely like a maniac.
  • ftTwitter and Facebook: This being the landmark year for social networking and micro blogging sites. Mind blowing success. We connected to long lost school friends and we keep a tab on our favourite celebrities’ day to day activities too, so simply. Love it. Shashi Tharoor ‘cattle class’ remarks on twitter created furore. Read here.
  • A whopping figure lingers on my head these days –Rs 126 crore. Amitabh Bachchan fetches that sum for hosting Bigg Boss Season 3. I still think it is a criminal amount to even offer or recieve.
  • Dr. Abdul Kalam Azad and Shah Rukh Khan detained at airport. Both were frisked as they are Muslims and similar names feature in the list of suspects? Huh!
  • 10th board cancelled: Must have been a respite for all the students back home. Lucky you all. Kudos to Education Minister Kapil Sibbal.
  • As for music it was an year for Lady Gaga hands down.
  • Wanted and DevD are my favourite movies of this year. Loved Paa, Wake up Sid too. Jugaad too as was directed by my brother Anand Kumar.
  • Other prominents we lost: Amongst the ones we lost forever are Y S Rajasekhara Reddy Chief Minister of AP died in helicopter crash was the biggest shock followed by heart attacks and suicides all across the state. 500+  is the unbelievable figure of death toll, just as an assessment of his acclaim. We lost Maharani Gayatri Devi, Feroz Khan, Patrick Swayze, David Shephard too. World will miss you all.
  • As I said I have not covered many like Madhu Koda’s laundering money worth over Rs. 4000 crores, Rahul Gandhi’s rising popularity, Katrina Kaifs’ superstardom, PM Manmohan Singh’s second term, cricket, Rakhi Sawant and so on..so pls excuse :p

To sum up will jot a few of mine too. My biggest achievement of the year – gave birth to YASH. Quickly thereafter managed to shed 13 kgs..Yay..few more to go. Ayshani starts going to her play school. We managed to cross past last years’ turnover of our company. Got iphone as a Christmas gift :). Finally did something which was long pending – revived my blog, yes that’s where you are.

On that note let me wish you all a great year ahead. So everyone just rock it.


laundering money worth over Rs. 4000 crores

Celebrity sexcapades

Michael Jackson, Silvio Berlusconi, Bill Clinton, David Beckham, Shane Warne, David Letterman, Hugh Grant, Woody Allen, George Michael and many more but adding to the list of philanderers is Tiger Woods. How much does it affect their larger than life public image and brings encumbrance in professional goings thereafter? Do you hold it against them for having shattered your trust which entailed unrelenting idol-worship in some?

Well..somewhat or not really. If their achievements are mammoth then such waverings can be ignored by the fans (Let their spouses deal with it). How many people can achieve that kind of fame?  Music made MJ, his character did not, goes for all the achievers. If we love them for their works then why suddenly nullify everything and start judging them. I agree when we talk about them, we think about their follies too but at the same time have immense respect for their professional triumphs. – I know many might differ but that’s my viewpoint.

Why do so many of such rich, famous and powerful husbands cheat on their undeniably gorgeous wives? Or why do they indulge in transgressions when they have everything going right for them?  (We will discuss some other time why actually ALL men want to deviate regardless of rich or famous.) Or at least seems so to the entire world that everything is right and they hold the most enviable situation. Aren’t they supposed to be godly, infallible, super-heroes who follow a strict chastity regime that prevents their public image from tarnishing?

When we get all that we wanted or even in excess, what else is there to life? How does one get that extra kick or adrenaline rush that can keep them going? Definitely rich and famous men have bigger egos and require higher levels of excitement. Extra-marital affair can satiate that vacuum (read sexual appetite). Accomplished men are more likely to fall prey to temptations as it must be scattered around in plenty through die-hard fans. They then grab at that attention when there is slightest of low moments with even the most gorgeous wife. According to study- Men who cheat on their wives – and at least 30 percent do, and they do so out of boredom.

Some might be perverts by nature, I feel that about Berlusconi. Shane Warne keeps repeating his romps, shows he doesn’t care about his image, Bill Clinton can be happy to have a wonderful forgiving wife, Michael Jackson lived towards his end as an alleged paedophile, but today he is a legend. When heard about Tiger Woods, I was a bit shaken by, but I have almost immediately forgotten about it. We humans have a short lived memory too when it comes to celebs, we forgive and forget pretty fast.

Such revelations only reaffirms that a human being is erroneous, imperfect. If ones achievements supersedes everything else and commands respect it cannot be at any cost be discredited.


PS: Would like to share some interesting comments which I read on various websites after Woods gave his statement.

  • The scandal is all about Woods’ character (or lack thereof): This is about his inflated ego and extreme selfishness. He’s only sorry because he got caught. This is a man with everything but character.
  • Woods is the perfect poster child for “the me generation!”
  • Why is it all these transgressors are never “sorry” until they are caught in the act?
  • He’s not a god. He’s a golfer. Prone to the same flaws as anyone else. The fact that a golfer has been turned into some kind of world-wide icon says far more about us than about him. And, yes, he is a celebrity, and he’s taken advantage of that as fully as he could. But that still doesn’t mean he should be punished any more than he already will be for giving in to a temptation untold millions have before him.
  • This business with Tiger Woods and his family and the most despicable women on the earth is not really worth all of the ink and air time. Are we really that blood thirsty and excited about this failure? It is like Rome and the Coliseum with the lions and gore. I think I hear cheering.
  • Go Tiger! LIfe life to the fullest. But choose better next time. Any woman who would let our yur phone messages is not worthy of your time. Having your friends is not the problem; it is your judgment on who those friends should be. But you are 33 and you have years to grow Life is not a dress rehersal; it is the real thing and you don’t get a second chancd to live a creative life. Keep your focus in your game And apply that same judgment to your affilliative life. I’m in your coner. We are in a new era and you are living as you should.
  • Oh yeah real bad in bed SO bad you kept doing it for like 31 months?
    The word of the day is TRAMP
  • We aren’t here to never make mistakes. We are here to learn from them.

A brilliant post by Pritish Nandy on the same lines. Must read ‘The Murder of a Sportsman

Beauty without purpose

Today everyone wants to look attractive or beautiful. What is the definition of beauty? Wikipedia – Humans who are relatively young, with smooth skin, well-proportioned bodies, and regular features, have traditionally been considered to be the most beautiful throughout history.

Solange Magnano, former Miss Argentina

Solange Magnano, former Miss Argentina

To achieve this ‘ideal’ beauty, humans are going all out, to cosmetologists more than they visit barbers these days. Obsession with this idea is increasing more and more amongst rich, famous and the narcissists. And they all are. This can be fatal, firstly in the mind then to the body. Today we hear that former Miss Argentina Solange Magnano aged 38, died due to complications after surgery for buttock enhancement. (Read here)

Botox, liposuction, breast augmentation, body contouring, nose reshaping are amongst most sort after cosmetic surgeries. All these became popular just about couple of decades ago and today almost 5 in 10 in the showbiz go for it, mostly women. Not getting into why they deny it too when it is so obviously apparent in some or all. We saw Michael Jackson performing countless graftings not only body parts even the skin colour. Pamela Anderson,Victoria Beckham, Michael Douglas, Marilyn Monroe, our bollywood is no way far behind with Shilpa Shetty, Sherlyn Chopra, Priyanka Chopra, Aishwarya Rai, Sushmita Sen, Esha Deol, Preity Zinta, not to forget Rakhi Sawant to name a few. I see these days almost all of these western socialites be in 20’s or 80’s have gone for some surgery or the other and i can honestly say that they look ugly, disproportionate and seemingly unnatural.

No, I am not entirely against cosmetic corrections, i only cannot understand the obsession for it. May be professionally they need to look ‘perfect’ for longer to stay in race, is antidote for their self-esteem and an extra boost of self-confidence. If it helps, good for them. Coming back to Solange Magnano, she didn’t need the surgery at all, she used to go to gym and worked out regularly. For her twin daughters, she must have been the most beautiful mother and the entire world.

On the other hand have we ever taken notice of those countless physically impaired in need of artificial limbs to merely be able to walk or hold, just to be able to experience this beautiful world in which they survive each day? What does beauty mean to them? I remember the story way back from my school text books – ‘In celebration of being alive’ by Dr Christiaan Barnard ( A blind boy and his friend who doesn’t have a leg are playing happily the push-cart game in a hospital dorm full of children. The blind boy is pushing the cart on which the disabled boy is seated and is steering it as well as guiding the blind boy.) Beauty to them is to make the most of the life with whatever God has given. Undoubtedly, to all the mothers their child is the most beautiful one.

Update: Wrote this article yesterday, not knowing today was World Disability Day. Would like to attach this link Thousands of disabled people celebrate World Disability Day

Roots en route

Tangy Tuesday PicksNo matter where we were born, geographically speaking, be it anywhere in this world, the only determining factor of what we are, is our genes. Apart from those genes, we comprise of millions of customs and rituals which were being followed, down the years by our ancestors and passed on to the descendants, and on each transfer somewhat of it was losing. Yes, through each generation aren’t we losing out on those practices exceptional and some not, by reasoning or science, laziness or lack of enthusiasm, lack of peripheral physical or mental? Today how many of us feel it is an imperative to keep the customs and traditions of our family alive? How many of us still have the sense of belonging, the kinship.

In this modern cosmopolitan mechanism, we tend to overlook or even forget those customs, those which were once an integral part of us and fail to pass it on completely since our children are in contemporary settings with largely heterogeneous society, where the mixed religion/caste/race background marriages is becoming more and more common. Parents in such cases prefer not to impose and overburden their children with all the customs from both sides.

I was only born in Kerala but I spent all my life in Delhi, till four years back when I moved to Germany. I must have visited my birthplace around 15 or 16 times in all, being kids we had no choice then, short of being dragged or handcuffed, me and my brother acquiesced each time. It took really long until we grew up to understand what it meant to have bathed in the nearby stream, spread out on paarapuratthu (rocks) waited for our goats to finish grazing, watched my grandmother fetch water from the well, running towards the backyard where the aroma of chicken being prepared filling the entire village, the walks and the thrill to reach the local movie theatre (of course thatched roof) through the paadams (paddy fields), savouring of pazham pori (banana fritters), dosa with chamandhi (chutney), kaapi (coffee) in local chaya-kada (teashop), finding film posters of Mohanlal, Mammutty, the superheroes everywhere, the hours and hours of bus-rides from paternal to maternal homes, the pamperings from relatives, hogging onto chakka, maanga, roasted cashews etc, lighting up the villakku at the dusk and waking up when radio played unfailingly Vande Mataram every morning at 6 am.

My parents followed all the Hindu traditions, customs and festivals, how deeply religiously cannot be measured, but they did so eventhough they lived in Delhi (thanks to temples and large population of Keralites) since they were in their twenties or even before, and we as children have almost entirely absorbed and imbibed all that we saw and heard. Onam, Vishu, Mahashivaratri amongst festivals, Chorunnu, Vidhyarambham, Iruvathattu (naming of baby on 28th day) amongst ceremonies are the prominent ones. I now feel it’s my moral duty to pass all these on to my children, who speak German as first language, English as second, Hindi, Malayalam, Tamil yet to follow (not burdening extra languages at this juncture when my daughter has just turned 3). Should I say even the languages/mother tongue is also losing out (I am not perfect in Malayalam, my husband is not good in Tamil :(). The tradition of buying malayalam calendar is definitely over as eventhough I could read somewhat but certainly never could understand the translation of months, zodiacs etc. I am glad as of now and so far so, I have been able to celebrate all the abovesaid festivals and ceremonies along with my children despite the non-availability of all the puja items out here. And I am sure when grow up, they too will realize the beauty, purity and significance of these rituals, their genes and instincts won’t fail them either.

First time I watched Chendavaadyam in a temple, I stood their unmoved obeying the deafening beats of the drums till the end, why and how was I relating to it is inexplicable. Howsoever modern or displaced your identity might have become, your five senses will never desert you. Smell will tingle your neurons, language will resound to reach your heart, the taste buds will perceive it, and sight will finally testify and shout out loud that you belong here.

Bizarre footwears

Just finished designing website for a shoe store. It was a new subject, haven’t designed a shoe website in 9 years of web designing. Call it whatever, I mostly go about to search for that correct dummy picture on the web even though i know it cannot be used for the final design, but for that perfect presentation, i can spend even hours to find one. So while searching some, I came across certain crazy shoes which triggered my search for even more and crazier ones. I really enjoyed watching them so downloaded a few only to share it with you all. So here i go, just sit back and get stunned. Do let me know which you think is the craziest. You may click on the thumbnails to see enlarged version.

If you still think you couldn’t have enough of these, then go to here.

Photo credits: yankodesign.com, geniusbeauty.com, montrealradioguy.files.wordpress.com, shoesoftheday.com, 1.bp.blogspot.com, 3.bp.blogspot.com, i26.tinypic.com, photos.posh24.com, kenembijoux.com, mariothetrainer.com, shoeblog.com, lh6.ggpht.com, legaljuice.com, thatshideous.com, 2.bp.blogspot.com, media.paperblog.fr, izismile.com, 1.bp.blogspot.com, cmathre.com, static.squidoo.com, kiana.isay.co.za

Over a stream

Any travel break is welcome especially when the whole year one spends at home, mostly on bed, dragging rather than walking, struggling to keep up with a 3 yr olds incessant demands, wailing away almost every night and many more such combats with a son in the tummy who is hell bent to prove he will be a sure-shot footballer someday. Though we had PhantasiaLand break some couple of months back but it already seems ages now. Although a long holiday is soon nearing (yay! Goa calling) during Christmas and New Year, we still like to savor on short trips too. So we book Hotel Zugbrücke, a four star known for wellness and sports, 180 kms away from our place near Koblenz.

Every year our staff gets surprise gifts from us for Christmas, last year we took all of them along with their families to Hotel Mercator which is just in our town, for one whole day stay, food, drinks, wellness all inclusive. It was great fun and we all enjoyed to the core. So this time over, we planned it differently with different gifts for all like cameras, iphones etc. But Christoph and family gets to spend with us on this surprise weekend trip.

We met at 9.00am at Janses Mattes restaurant situated at a main crossing, thats mostly a meeting point for any road journey for people around here. They were supposed to follow us (not blindfolded) along through the beautiful scenic landscapes which is spread all over germany with the onset of autumn. For them the journey seemed unending as Raj had told them that we were to drive just about 80 kms so the surprise already had begun as they drove for 100 km extra. And we finally reach our destination by 11.00am.

Hotel Zugbrück is one of its kind specially for table tennis lovers, has a bowling alley, a disco, wellness with sauna, swimming pool, whirlpool, babysitting facility, a large kids playroom too. It is such a wonder that this small hilly area produces world class table-tennis players like Lucjan Blaszczyk, Tomas Pavelka, Patrick Baum and Matiss Burgis. So our surprise destination was duly acknowledged by all, kids were already jumping, dying to do so, more into the swimming pool.

Hotel Zugbrücke

Hotel Zugbrücke with Christoph and family in the foreground

We first wanted to have lunch so we proceeded to the restaurant which was connected to the hotel by a channel or sort of bridge. And the buffet had just begun. We opted for the window corner from where we could see a stream passing, the bridge that we crossed was just above that. This explains the name of the hotel Zugbrücke (zug is a train and brücke means bridge).

View from the restaurant

View from the restaurant where the stream is flowing

After lunch we took a short rest and then spent good three hours in the swimming pool area. Kids were having a ball of a time screaming and splashing away. Cappucino was welcome at this point. Now the idea of having the whirlpool out in the open only added to the charm of the wholesome experience with cold mist almost enveloping and the tall trees overlooking you while a glass of champagne just complimented the hot water massages. We just ran out of time for tennis as bowling was booked for 6.30 pm which was absolute fun after 12 yrs approximately. Wondering how much we lose out on smaller joys when we think nothing but work, work and work all our life. With kids we are now reliving those forgotten golden days.

It was time for dinner now. I loved all in the elaborate menu which consisted of onion soup, variety of salads, pork and deer was main course food, knödel, grilled champignons, zucchini, aubergine, rosemarine potatoes, paprika and fettucini, thunfish with teriyaki sauce and many many more. I am not even getting to the dessert area, besides I am still dieting. As the kids were tired and sleepy they had to be put to bed, so I say goodnight to all. I also slept as early as 10.30pm and Raj came back to room at 1.00am.

Got up at 7 in the morning, it was drizzling outside and no one wanted to wake up. We definitely wanted to stay for the Sunday as well, but cannot. At 9am we had to meet for breakfast and then by 11am we aimed at checking out, as a short and sweet, well spent holiday came to an end, kids were seemingly upset. So next time it will be a at least good three days for us, promise :).

PS: Christoph and family however wanted to spend sometime more around the hill top, trekking upto the castle.