Navratri starts from today :-). Makes me nostalgic. I am a Gujarati at heart. Born and brought up in Ahmedabad. So Garba - Raas is something which I have been acquainted since childhood. Love the Dandiya nights. The entire night of continuous dancing and revelry. First Garba, then Hinch and then Raas. Raas being the easiest. 

After my 12th Standard, I never really lived in Ahmedabad again. Been in Engineering Hostel and MBA hostel and then in Mumbai. Mumbai has a strong Gujarati community but its just not the same. Don't consider them true blue gujaratis. Some of my friends will kick me for writing this but there is a stark and a huge difference. I cannot really point it down. I was pretty disappointed the way this festival is celebrated here. There's just no zing and almost everyone turns up in a fusion of traditional and western, more so towards western dressing. Very few people are traditionally dressed and some that are, are way over the top and pretty loud. And I miss LAW GARDEN. The place for shopping for and during navratri. Sigh!!!! Its just not the same. This festival makes me nostalgic. Miss my gang :-(

My school gang at a garba night at St. Xaviers, Ahmedabad, 1998

Peeking Colleague

You know, it really really really bugs me.... when somebody sneakily stands over my shoulder and stares into my computer. Especially when that someone is one of your colleagues with whom you get along just fine!!! Who is not the most loved colleague, avoided and given a chance mocking and insufferably rude!!!! 

I so totally detest this. Well, this happened today while I was going through some entertainment articles on the internet. This particular colleague sneaked in and just stood behind my chair for good 2 minutes. And mind you, this 'colleague' is at a damn good designation, has good amount of work experience plus a professional qualification. So much for the 'experience' and 'education'. 
Gave him my piece of mind on etiquette. Don't think its going to make much of a difference but got it off my chest. 

Office etiquette is not something which everyone is educated in. Be it in terms of writing email, conversations, dressing, code of conduct or just general behaviour. It pains me to see qualified CAs / MBAs just lacking in general etiquette and inadvertently creating a negative atmosphere. But I guess, its not something which can be taught but imbibed via good observation.  


Like they say, 'Honesty is the best policy' but I guess it comes with a pinch of salt and in this typical case a wee bit of rudeness (from my end)!!! Not very proud of what happened and I regret it a lot that it happened, but might I say, not one of the best examples. 

2 weeks back, a stranger called up on my mobile phone. He said, madam, I have your wallet with me, your PAN card, your driving license, bank cards and cash. I refused to believe since I already had my wallet and nothing was lost. He kept addressing me as Megha madam. Now, a lot of people do mess my name up and I find it very irritating. How hard can it be to pronounce MeghNA... Anyways, I said, No! thank you Sir, I've have all my belongings and have not lost anything. He called, close to 10 times. I went from being polite, patient and then rude. The guy persisted. He kept calling for 2 hours continuously and it really p******* me off. He started to sound sleazy on the phone and with a final police ka dhamki I slammed my mobile down!!! I mean - the nerve of the guy.

Hmmmmm... that was then!!!! 

Last thursday, I met one of my college friends for Pizza. It was her birthday and uncannily she was called Megha :-P. Yes - you are thinking right. It was her wallet!!! And somehow, in some mannar the guy, now the autowallah, discovered my visiting card there and started calling me up. No - he didn't see her visiting card, her PRESS Id or anything, but MY visiting card. 

Rest they say is history!!! I tried retrieving his number from my call log but it was long gone. My friend will now have to file an FIR and see if things can be recovered. Both of us were zapped. If only she had told me that she had lost her wallet I would have kept an ear open for her and in turn avoided a bad experience for the autowallah. No - she didn't chew my brains, because lot of people confused us with our names!!!! 

The entire episode does make me sad in the sense, the next time something like this happens, the autowallah is surely not going to call up anyone and try to do something honest. He might as well throw it in a nearby bin or use whatever he can !!!!


Happy Engineer's Day


Happy Engineer's Day to one and all - especially engineers. I especially congratulate myself for being one!!! I think all engineers are proud to be one even if they are jobless / mindless or plain dumb or for that matter successful / smart / building bridges or chips or bulbs or generating power. Well - engineers are a proud breed. Proud  not because of the education or the degree or the job, proud because they went through the process of completing their engineering studies and finally getting a degree.
Well, there are 2 types of engineers. Now you would think - only 2??? Now - its not what you are thinking. I am not talking about the computers / electronics / mechanical / civil / instrumentation or even the environmental engineer. To be clear, once again, there are 2 types of engineers - first - those who went to an engineering college and lived at their homes with their mummyji and papaji and siblings!!!! And second - there are those engineers who went to an engineering college and lived in a hostel!!!! Aahhhh!!!! Now thats the breed that I am talking about. And truely, those are the engineers we are really proud of being.

Well, the hostel life in an engineering college is starkly different. I for one, did not have 5 star hostels. I remember, in our first year, we had a tin roof. Scarcity of water. Horrible food. Slow moving fans. Queues outside the washroom. We addressed our seniors as mam / sir. Till this day, if I happen to meet one of my long lost seniors, the mam / sir part remains. Its become a part of their name. I remember the first semester especially when the freshers HAD to wear salwaar kameez ONLY with dupatta and oil their hair and make a braid or tie it up. I remember the engineering drawing sessions and how I had mastered the Glass Tracing technique and submitted sheets and sheets of submissions. I also remember burning my mattress in this process (GT was forbidden !!!). I remember compering the engineer's day in college and being the food coordinator and ahem!!! going for tasting too. At the end of it all, my feet had hurt like hell. We had watched 6 AM  movies in nondescript movie halls where tickets were cheap and to save money we would walk it up. The new year celebrations were fantastic. Oh, how we used to hog on food. We would have put anybody to shame. Maggie was a blessing in disguise. It was a saviour on many a night especially when you had discovered cockroaches in your mess ka khana. The freshers party and the farewell party - how all the year students would be busy in atleast one of them. And the exams!!!! We could finish books in one day. 37 was the magical figure for us ( 3 marks grace!!!). 

Had mastered the art of scanning. The Xerox wala being a revered and reliable friend for notes and books. No - many times we did not buy books, we just got them photocopied. It was easy to distribute chapters among 2-3 people and study them. Its difficult to tear up books - chapter wise!!!!! Engineers per say, study only during the prep leave and the best of them study only during the exams. And once the exams are over, a movie it is - to unwind and prepare for the next exam day after tomorrow :-). Engineers are an odd lot. There are thousands and thousands of things which are coming to my mind right now. In this case, seriously, the journey is the destination.
And so, I believe Chetan Bhagat did not write something sacred when he wrote 5 POINT SOMEONE!!! Apart from the story line - student falling for the prof's daughter - everything is known and accepted - amongst the engineers. And that is also why, I don't think, that 3 IDIOTS is great movie. Its an okay movie with almost no novelty thrown in. And then again, I don't quite get the 'shor' surrounding the Chetan Bhagat - 3 IDIOTS movie saga. Sure the book and the movie must be a great read and watch for a lot of people, but again, there is no point fighting over the copywrite infridgements because that is common to almost all the engineering colleges which have a hostel facility.
Anyways, I had been in a fix since quite sometime about the topics to blog about. Checked in on twitter and found my topic there :-). Did not waste time and got down to blogging!!!!

Marie Biscuits

Name of snack: Marie Biswich
Preparation time: 2 mins
1 packet Marie Biscuits (depending upon the need of the snack)
Leftover green chutney from Sandwizza
Leftover oregano and chilly flakes from Dominoes
Free sachets of tomato sauce from Dominoes

1. Apply the green chutney over one Marie Biscuit
2. Put Tomato Sauce over it
3. Sprinkle oregano and chilly flakes
4. Cover it with another Marie Biscuit
5. It is now ready to eat :-)

I sure did enjoy eating this. It was a quick fix at my workplace :-P. Yeah - I do that too!!! Especially when you also have over enthusiastic colleagues as 'funky' as you!!!! Hehehehe, more than eating this, I sure did enjoy the process. Its a fun food. Not much of a thing in the culinary skills department, but hey, children could sure try this one out and its healthy too!!!! No extra calories and a flavour of oregano which gives a similar feeling to that of a pizza :-)

These days, am running short of topics to blog about. I want to write but am not finding a topic that I would enjoy writing about. Please feel to drop a suggestion as to what I could / can write about.
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Guitar Trouble

Its been quite a while since I posted about my time struggling with the GUITAR.

Guitar, it is said, is not one of the simpler instruments to play. Yes - it looks jazzy and stylish and all that, but it is definitely not easy to master it. I have been told that it will take good 5 to 6 years of practice before you actually to begin play songs the moment you hear them. I have been trying to some basic level of plucking and strumming with the instrument but somehow, I lose interest in between when I realise that I am not really progressing. Yes - I have not been very consistent in practising but I would like partly blame my inexperience in the kind of teachers I chose to begin with. I just hope and pray that I do not become an Air Guitarist :-P like the shown here in the cartoon below!!!

I started off last year around June. A personal tutor, part time music teacher and full time struggler in Bollywood, came to teach me. He was pretty quick with the basics and taught me 12 scales, covering 3 octaves, in 2 months flat. We had even started off with the chords. I was good with the scales or atleast he seemed to think so. So we went at abnormally high speed with the instrument however, I felt we were going too fast. So decided to take a break and practice more so as to get more comfortable. Unfortunately for me the break lasted for 2-3 months mainly due to my procrastination. The teacher by then had left for greener pastures!!! (He got a good break it seems).
I then joined a music class which was closer to my home. We were a bunch of students of all ages and size in the class with one teacher. This new teacher had himself learnt to play the guitar 5 years back, so in a way, he was yet learning. He discarded all my learnings from the previous teacher. Taught me the "new" and the "correct" notations - Sa, Re, Ga, Ma...(which to my understanding then, were the same thing but had a different alphabet, which was right). He insisted I had learnt wrong and began from scratch. So again, I started with the scales from Sa scale instead of C. He taught the scales only one Octave and taught us some Bollywood songs as well. That was good as long as it lasted but that again left me feeling dissatisfied. So...... hmmmm.... I left that too!!!! By now, I am sure you must be thinking, that may be she has a "focus" problem!!! Maybe, I am not too sure. So- its been 3 months now, since I have stopped going to the classes or even touching my guitar for that matter. The hunt is on for another tutor........!!!! Hopefully I shall discover him soon enough!!! The one who will take over this lull and combine all my learnings (good or bad) together and make some kind of musical sense out of it  (Filmy touch!!! )

The reason I am writing my rant over here, that I really really want to play the guitar. I have always wanted to learn it and have discovered the time and the intention only recently. This post, hopefully, will keep reminding me about me procrastinating forever and much so that I might lose interest....:-)