Posts Tagged With: life

Lies of our childhood

Never tell a lie (else your nose will extend like Pinocchio!). This was and still is a consistent teaching from my mother. But during this vacation, while trying to make my 5 year old niece eat her food, I realized that our childhood is full of lies.

why I lie to my kids

Oops! I swallowed a seed!

And as innocent we are as children, we believed in them. I don’t remember even once challenging them. Things like don’t eat the seeds of a fruit else you will have a plant growing inside. I still remember on days when I accidently swallowed a seed, I actually used to dream at night that there will be branches and leaves coming out of my ears and nose when I wake up.

Or don’t go outside the gate alone; there is a baba on the street who takes away children.

The maximum lies were in food items. I used to hate yellow moong dal and love yellow urad dal. To make me eat that moong dal , my mom said it’s chota urad (small urad dal) and after that I ate it.. Despite the fact that I still didn’t like it’s taste, just because it was the smaller version of a dal that I loved I ate it. And this is the lie that I believed in till I went to college and fellow students in the mess told me that there is nothing like a chota urad and that this is moong dal.

Then another one that I remember was for arbi (colocasia). She made me eat it saying it was potato! Though I am proud to say they weren’t able to fool us for baingan, lauki, torai, tinda etc (eggplant, bottle gourd, snake gourd etc) :D.

A recent retort by Nandini (my niece) to didi made me realise not only were we innocent, we were also outright stupid :).

Here’s the incident:

Didi: Nandini sit upright.

Nandini: No. I want to eat like this.

Didi: You should not eat while lying down.

Nandini: Why mama?

Didi: If you eat while lying down; all the food goes in the donkey’s stomach.

Nandini: It’s okay mama. Even the donkey should get to eat.

Lies parents tell to their children

It’s okay mama even the donkey should get to eat!

There was obviously no reply to this one and we all just started laughing. Laughing at her response or laughing at the fact that all through our childhood our mother was able to fool us with this! 🙂

And then there are the bigger lies of Tooth fairy and Santa Claus. Of course these lies were for our own good. I sort of agree to a fellow blogger’s argument that it’s not lying; it’s parenting!

And come to think of it what would childhood have been without the ‘Lion’ who was always hiding behind the sofa ready to leap if you didn’t finish the bite!

Categories: around us, Family, Old times | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Because you’re my mom

love you mumma, you’ve been a mother, a friend, a pillar of strength. we’ve laughed, we’ve cried, we’ve played, we’ve fought. You’ve always known me, there was never a reason (or even a chance!) to hide.. and I’m sorry for all the pain I might have caused and I know I’m forgiven and I know you’ll always love me unconditionally..

Happy Mother’s Day .. today and everyday

I can’t do poetry, but I wanted something beautiful for my mom and so stole this one!

Because You’re My Mom (poem by Linda Arlene Fassett)

Because you are my mom you loved me before I was ever seen
You thanked God for this miracle, this little human being
So exciting, yet fragile it all must have seemed to you then
Hearing my little heart beat inside you, now life begins

Because you are my mom no pain was too great for you to bear
Now you’re a mother and I your child with joys and pains to share
And so into this world my life began each breath now on my own
One day we will look back at just how much I’ve grown

Because you are my mom you worried for me within your every bone
You finally let go of my little hand to take my first steps on my own

Because you are my mom you showed me through the years
To care about others and their feelings and the things that they hold dear

Because you are my mom you taught me right from wrong
Understanding that my faith in God will forever keep me strong
Showing me that being my own person is the only tool I’ll need
When morals and values are your foundation to succeed

Because you are my mom you loved me enough to also be my friend
You would be right there in ways that no one could see or ever comprehend
When there was no way I thought you could ever understand
There you would be, non-judging and willing to lend a hand

Because you are my mom, God’s gift to me was you
As your daughter I will always love you and promise to be true
I thank you for so many things and will try to never make you sad or blue

Because you are my mom, and one-day I will be a mother too
I pray I never forget all that you’ve been through
I am your daughter and in your image I am proud to be
By the grace of the Lord you were created, and then I came to be

Source: Because You’re My Mom, Mother Daughter Poems

Categories: around us, Family | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Of Hugs and Kisses…

The real ones and not the Hershey’s Hugs and Kisses (bad one!). Though I like them too 🙂

I recently encountered “Mr. Half Hug”. I didn’t even know a term like ‘half hug’ existed before today (I feel so outdated!). I actually thought I invented the term B-), but then google god gave me the exact definition of half hug as I had thought – “The act of going in sideways, and putting one arm around another person. It’s “half a hug“”. I read this and I said Bingo! And I thought its time I give this blog a lifesaver (another post :p).

Interestingly as children, we hug instinctively. But as we grow up, I don’t know, we shy away from it? But then why give half-a-hug, it’s awkward and IMO it’s worse than none at all. Someone said, “A hug is done with two hands and lasts more than a fifth of a second”. And why be stingy about giving a hug? There is nothing to lose and everything to gain. The more you give, the wealthier you get. The world is full of misery and unhappiness (and seriously I didn’t need to do a Master’s in Social Policy in Dev to know that!). Give a hug, get a hug; it multiplies. Makes two people happier. And talking in practical terms (for the ones who want a logic!), hugs increase levels of oxytocin and reduces blood pressure. So with every hug, two people reduce their risks of heart disease!

I love the Spanish culture: a smile, a hug and two kisses. So much to gain from just one greeting.

And lord help me there is also a concept of an “e-mail hug” or an “online hug”. I wonder aren’t those a contradiction in themselves? I was recently doing an essay on the impact of the Internet on social capital.. and my essay ended as “whatever wonderful things the wired and wireless will bring, a hug is not one of them.”. And the day I submit my essay (today), I get an “online hug”. Aargh. In this computerized, glass and steel world, we need more real hugs, more real smiles and more real kisses. A hug is a handshake or a high-five. It’s just more personal, more warmer. Hugs make everyone feel good and the need to be hugged doesn’t change when we get older. Reach out. Give a real two-arm hug to the next person you meet and get richer. “It’s one piece of magic we can all do everyday”.

Leaving with the Free Hugs Campaign official video

Lots of XOXO!

Categories: around us | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment


I like the concept of Weekend Brunch and I like the fact that brunch starts at noon and goes on till 4pm 🙂 Gives enough time to wake up late and still start the weekend early enough to enjoy the day. Until last night I had all plans to work on my essay today but today was one the best days I have seen in London till now. A perfect, warm and sunshiny day. I just couldn’t waste such a day staying at home and struggle over an essay. So I decided I’d go to the Borough market, drink some warm mulled wine and buy fresh vegetable, cheese and spreads. But it took no more than 5 minutes for Siva to convince to come for a brunch at South Ken instead J. After some google attempts at Austrian and Dutch brunch places, we finally hit on Madsen restaurant. I enjoyed the place so much that I thought I should try my hand at writing a restaurant review. Obviously, a perfect day was the highlight of the experience, but I should give the restaurant its fair due.

Situated opposite the only Lamborghini showroom in London, the restaurant occupies a prime location. This was my first time in South Kensington. The area has a vibrant mix of high-end boutiques, restaurants amidst the Victorian grandeur of Natural History Museum, Albert memorial, Victoria and Albert museum and the science museum. The ambience is warm, relaxed and stylish. They have seating in the patio as well (they don’t have heaters in the patio, but they do provide blankets), though we took a table inside just next to the glass wall to enjoy the sunshine and also stay warm inside. I have no clue about Scandinavian dishes and cannot say if they were truly authentic or not, but I can surely say that I enjoyed the food – the appearance and the taste. The menu is almost a book, because of their extensive wine list, but they also have a good mix of traditional Scandinavian dishes and modern European dishes and enough options for vegetarians like me.

We started with a warm oatmeal porridge served with apple compote and fresh apples for myself and natural yogurt with fresh blueberries and almond granola for Siva and a large pot of filter coffee!. A part of food experience is its appearance, and I was delighted by what came on our table. I should also mention the fresh thyme on top, which added to the taste. The service was good, but since Siva finished his breakfast much before me and they didn’t bring the next order until I finished mine, meant he had to wait.

My lunch order was a potato and crispy onion smushi, which is a smaller version of traditional Danish open sandwich called Smørrebrød. It was a teeny-weeny rye bread, with lot of things on top. Looked good, tasted good. But it really was very small. Siva called it a miniature sandwich. So if you are hungry, you may want to order 3-4 of those :). Siva ordered a Portobello mushroom burger, which also received a thumbs-up.

“Gammeldags æblekage” (which means old fashioned apple pie) came in a glass, with layers of apple compote, amaretti biscuits and whipped cream. I would have preferred real poached apples instead of the compote, but no complaints.

The prices? It wasn’t expensive. It was well priced for the location, the food and the ambience. Without alcohol, our bill was around 35 pounds for two people.

I could just say, Madsen would be my first recommendation, if anyone asks me for a good brunch place.

Categories: Gen | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


Regrets are looked upon as rear view mirrors in life. They provide us with the view of the traffic behind to help us move forward. But sometimes regrets come a bit too late in life for them to provide us with a sense of going back and doing things right or even put things right in the present. The window of opportunity is lost by the time we realise what has been lost. I just kept on wishing … I wish I had called more often, I wish I had stayed over that day.. I wish I had spent more time with her.

To everybody, life is uncertain, take time out; call and meet friends and family.

Categories: around us | Tags: , , | 2 Comments


Laptops and desktops are repository of photos and songs.. people will have GBs of songs and same for pictures.. I wonder do we ever even look at those pictures again and do we ever manage to listen to all the songs or we just keep listening to the same play-list we had made long time ago? At least that’s true for me.. So yesterday I just played all songs in random mode and I was surprised to hear songs long forgotten, songs I didn’t even know existed on my comp.. and same for pictures.. I changed my screensaver to randomly pick photos from all the albums on my comp and Lo! There were pictures from my school time, pictures from my childhood.. I don’t even remember scanning them! I spent the entire evening going through all my albums and listening to random songs..

I thought I’ll put a collage of some very nice snaps which a friend took during our recent (one year ago) Rajasthan trip but then it took me about 8 months to get those snaps from him! 🙂


Categories: around us, Gen, Travel | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Keeping santa happy


Today, I got a call from a very old friend after a very long time. He, assuming I wouldn’t have his number after all these years,  wanted to play a prank. But unfortunately for him and fortunately for me he couldn’t do his act. So after the initial disappointment, he started telling me about another prank he has planned on one of his cousins..

The conversation after that went on to his PhD applications and how tensed he was about it and general talk. At the end of it I just told him probably like Calvin, he would want to keep Santa happy while he is still applying and not spoil his chances by being bad.. so he could forget his pranks for a little while :). I’m sure there was a Calvin strip in which he tells Santa how good he has been and how he thinks he deserves all the gifts etc etc (I think Calvin is always complaining to Santa about him not giving the gifts he asks for, but at least he believes in Santa even if it is just for the sake of getting the gifts). I tried searching the strip but couldn’t find it.. Maybe someone else could help me there.

But I had a different set of questions here .. How close to Christmas should we start thinking about keeping Santa happy? Is he keeping a tab of our good and bad deeds always or he sets out a month when he leaves all other jobs and just monitors people’s activity? In any case, with the exploding population, he should be in need for new staff always. Be it monitoring people, keeping record of their activities, thinking about ‘appropriate’ gifts (which he thinks are appropriate but like Calvin, I think we never get what we want like a missile and a launcher :)), buying/collecting/manufacturing gifts, distributing.. It’s a whole army up there! Where do I send my application for a job interview with him?

Santa will I get a job, if I stay good till Christmas or the monitoring period is over and since its closer to Christmas you are now busy collecting gifts?

Categories: Gen | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Life and LSE

It’s been so long since I last posted and after the last posting, one would think I’m doing fine settling in and should have got a hang of things by now. But well getting back to studies isn’t easy. And if you want to give it your best shot then maybe you end up taxing yourself a little too much. I cannot say that I am studying 18X7 (given that I at least need 6 hours of sleep every day!) hours but yes I am studying most of the times..  Something that I hope to change soon. Life has been hectic and I have the usual set of ‘student cribs’ – lectures, readings, essays, submissions, presentations… (read blah blah blah). When I came and was handed over the question for the 1st essay assignment (in the first week of lectures), I had no clue how I would be able to write 1000 words on a topic I had no clue about. It was a topic that I had come to learn, how can they expect me to write on it before I have any interaction with that area! Anyway since then I have done 4 essays and written more than 7000 words and 2 seminar presentations in 2 months. So the learning curve was fast. Though, there hasn’t been any feedback till now so I don’t know if the curve was steep or just mediocre.

Apart from the usual grill, LSE has been fun. The public lectures are very interesting. I remember when the minister to the Foreign minister of Israel had come for a talk, the Palestinian students had staged so many protests and even though it wasn’t huge, it was the first time I was in the middle of a college protest. For me it was an experience.

Before coming here, life moved on without much concern about things happening elsewhere. They were always things happening to someone else, someplace else but not affecting me or my immediate concerns in any way. But now these are things happening to the person sitting next to me in the class and there is no way that I can be ignorant of them. When the news of bomb blast in Peshawar came, a friend was immediately on phone trying to contact his family. There is no way that I can stay unaffected by it. And I think all this is changing me. In certain ways I’m loosing my optimism. I still don’t know whether that’s good or bad. Whether I’m becoming more realistic or just more pessimistic? When I came here, I had a vision, a desire to be part of a process to undo the wrongs done to some people. The perspective or the understanding I had of the world was too narrow and limited. The reality is far more crude and cruel. The challenges are great and the stakes are high. So many times we read of concepts that appear good and so logical and we are left questioning as to why have those concepts not been put to use! Are these beautiful ideas just to win Nobel Prizes? Can policy makers not put these ideas to good use OR are policy makers not doing their job well intentionally, just to ensure that their job stays? At TI, someone once said to me “put a known bug in your design and you are going nowhere for the next 5 years, because you’ll be spending that time fixing it” Perfect solution to job insecurity 🙂 . I wonder if policy makers also think so.

I think I shall leave at that note because otherwise I believe people will stop reading postings here. (not that I have too many people reading it! But I shall stick to my optimism) 🙂

Categories: LSE | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

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