Like Duck to Water, thats how I have taken to life :). This blog is the saga of love and adventures of a small duck in a large water body called LIFE....

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

BTFYA 1 - Back to 5 years ago

They say that you have to sift through loads of coal before you get to a diamond. But 5 years ago, the darkness of the soot from all the sifting was very close to touching my heart, still there was not even a slight shine. It was hard to hold onto the hope when there was simply no prospect in sight. It was not really that I was that desperate to get married. It was more like I was weary of all the pressure and all the repeated questions from relatives and friends (which is one of the reasons I pledged that I'd never ask anyone about "marriage" or "kids" plans :-p). Moreover my self-doubting was causing even more of a distress to me than anything else.

Maybe it wouldn't have been so bad if the situation at home had been better. Dad, God bless him, wasn't really worried or atleast he never showed his worries to me but mom was the worse affected of it all. She was the most influenced by the society as such and she was wondering whether her daughter will ever find a groom. Since mom and I are very close, she'd confide in me about her anguish, making matters and my feelings worse. I used to ask myself whether marriage was the sole purpose of life, the start and end of it all and well, I didn't have any answers.

Each time I "saw" a guy, I'd be all excited. Maybe he was the one, the one with whom I would know I belong. I used to wonder how anyone knew that they were meant to be with the other person. How would you know a person until you actually live with him/her? Again no answers except the elusive "You'll know". The only decision I made was to have no regrets whether I said "Yes" or "No". And I held onto this rule with all the guys I met, but I did come close to breaking it for one - lets call him V.

Before I even got to a decision, the whole "Yes" or "No" deal would go through my parents first. That was my first filter level, so though I met somewhere close to 20 guys and even more sets of parents, more than 60% of the prospective grooms got rejected with a "collective" "No" :-D. V was the exception. He was quite handsome, met all of my parents' criteria and his parents were gems. But I somehow felt that he was too serious. I'm not into philosophy and spirituality at all and 3/4th of the time he talked only about those. They said "Yes" immediately and maybe I shouldn't have encouraged it, but I was kinda coerced into meeting him again. The 2nd time only re-enforced the feelings I got from the first time and I was able to say an outright "No". Mom was not too sure about my decision and it was quite frustrating for me to even explain to her why I thought it'd not work. But well, ultimately, she knew what I was talking about and she convinced his parents somehow that I wasn't generally into marriage (V's mom even said that he could live separately if joint family was a problem, which honestly was never the issue. She was such a sweetheart!).

Around the end of August 5 years ago, as I said, I had just said goodbye to the last prospect in sight and was very close to regretting not having said "Yes" to V. But I still wasn't in the phase of marrying the first guy that came along. The last guy, A was one of those guys who are great as friends, but just don't cut it as husband material (maybe for some other girl, but not me). We had exchanged emails for quite sometime and one thing that irked me majorly about him was the fact that he smoked as well as drank socially. My problem wasn't that he chose to smoke or drink, but the reason he gave for it - because his friends did. That kinda took me aback, you live your life for your friends? Anyways smoking was a total no no for me and we both decided to stay friends.

The experiences had only made me more frustrated. Before A, I had communicated online with another guy N who kept talking about how looks aren't important. He left me wondering whether it was his looks he was talking about or mine. Well, I didn't have to wonder for long. After months of chats, emails and online communication, I got a pretty good idea about his lack of humour and his quite-a-big inferiority complex. Our so called communication never went offline, stopped at the online part ;-) :-D.

Anyways you can see how this ordeal can lead to mental unrest. I felt like running away from the pressure. To be with myself and think about where I want to be, rather than meet guys and talk about it. And I did. I went on a trek trip all by myself with a trek group to Bisle forest. This was the first time in 24-odd years that I went anywhere without my parents tagging along and though it was scary at first, it was exhilarating. And it was the beginning of my love for adventure :). I'll probably write another separate post on that, but one thing I was able to do there was exactly what I wanted to do. I remember sitting on the banks of a river alone and thinking that it was the one of the best days of my life after a long time. I felt free and not pressured. I also felt refreshed and ready to tackle the next set of guys ;-). Later I went on another trek, this time to Yedukumeri with mom (you heard it right, she joined me on the total 34 mile trek!) and we were able to spend time together (make that hike, rappel, cross rivers on rope together :-D) without thinking about guys and marriage as such ;-). I feel the trips kinda brought me back from a bad state of mind that I was getting myself into.

Coming back to today, I have had one of my best friends ask me "You are fair and pretty, how come you had to go through this?" and I remember saying the whole deal doesn't have anything to do with looks. Looks are a part of it but just looks are never enough when you are going into a marriage. There are so many things to consider that its all quite mind-boggling. And to imagine, many of us have gone through it and many are going through it right now! I have also had other friends ask me as to how I knew he was the one when I met Sri. I have said "I don't know, I just did". I still don't know why. Yes he passed my parents' filter. Yes, he had many of the qualities I had in mind. But I cannot to this day say why I said Yes to him. I'm only glad about one thing. I said "Yes" after thinking and not because I was tired of "seeing" guys. I said "Yes" in a very clear state of mind and not because I was pressured into it. I said "Yes" because I felt like saying it and not because I felt I had to. It doesn't mean that I haven't had doubts but whats more important is that I haven't had any regrets whatsoever :).


This post is the start of a series and I wanted to write it because I started this blog after I was married. Had I been able to keep a record of my feelings 5 years back, it'd have been a different side of me. I have been wanting to post about a series of things that happened before this blog did, but you know what my usual excuses are :-D. Well, Sri and I are reaching our 5th anniversary soon (No, today is NOT our anniversary), so I felt this would be a good time. And just to get the point across, this post is not really about Sri. Its all about me and what I was going through. This is usually what most people in arranged marriages go through unless they have a diamond glaring at them on top of all the coals, which is what happened to Sri ;-) :-D.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Snugli has this habit of walking backwards blindly and falling into the laps of anyone who's sitting in her path. Yesterday this habit of hers literally gave me a shock. We were in the laundry room and I was transferring washed clothes from the washer into the drier. Now the laundry room is in the upper floor directly facing the staircase. She was blocking the door of the drier, so I asked her to move back a bit. The rest you can guess :-p. She started walking backwards directly towards the staircase. The moment literally freezed and my heart stopped. I jumped and caught hold of her right at the moment where her next step would have hurled her downwards in the staircase. Thank God! My heart was beating so fast and I almost felt like crying. The whole episode served as yet another reminder to why I don't take my eyes off her anytime she is near the stairs. Even now, thinking of that, I feel a chill going through me. That was one of the scariest moments of my life..

No wonder they call her category of age - the terrible twos!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Nashville niceties :).

Finally the post I've been meaning to write. So I'm not really going to delay the whole thing with more chit-chat (which is what I seem to be doing now :-p), but get on with it..

This time though July 4th fell on a Saturday, but Sri had a holiday on Friday on the account of the same. But since we had just then moved and knew that we'd be busy, we hadn't really planned anything for the long weekend. So the trip was a spur of the moment thing. We didn't really want to spend the whole weekend away as we had things to setup and so the plan was to leave on Friday July the 3rd and come back on July 4th night. Nashville, Tennessee is about 3 hours drive away, so we thought it'd be pretty okay.

And it was :). We left Lexington after lunch and reached Nashville by evening (it was Snugli's nap-time, so we were able to make it without even stopping :-D). We had been to Nashville before on our trip to Destin, Florida. But we were in a hurry to get to Florida, so I think we just stopped for dinner and rest there, that was it. Sri's friends suggested a couple of things we could see there, the first place being the Sri Ganesha temple of Nashville.

It was beautiful. The Ganesha idol was impressive and really bhakthi-inspiring :)). We spent quite sometime enjoying the indoors as well as the outdoors. Well, photography was not allowed inside, so you know what that means ;-).

They even had a small ratha (chariot) :)). Reminded me of the Udupi rathas that I like so much :).

Snugli had a wonderful time running around in the campus :). Then we left and had dinner at, wait for it, Woodlands!! It was vegetarian and the food was fabulous. Oh man, it had been such a long time since I had had good gobi manchurian here (we have one Indian restaurant that makes it here in Lexington, but it just doesn't cut it :-p). We had a meal of chaat, manchurian and noodles (thats my favourite kind of junk food :-D) and it was so so satisfying :)).

On July 4th morning, we headed to Opryland. Opryland hotel is a indoor resort and there is no entry fee (they loot you enough when you buy other goodies/food :-D). Its also attached to Opry mills, a huggggge factory outlet which actually had a Gibson guitar outlet!! The first one I've seen here in the US. Anyways, the hotel is the largest non-casino hotel in the world! It has 5 sections, with different themes, big number of different types of lodgings and different temperature settings! It was pretty impressive :). The first section we saw was the Delta.

Delta has a small river and an "island" connected to the "mainland" by bridges. They even had a boat ride on the river!! They had waterfalls, fountains, various types of vegetation (all real plants in real soil), ducks and fishes! It was fabulous for a man-made environment :).

See what I mean? We took the so-called boat ride and enjoyed the view :). It was a different thing that Snugli simply wanted to be "in" the water :-D. The ride even came with a guide who informed of the hugggggggge numbers of plants and animals they had! We were also told that the temperature was maintained according to the comfort of the vegetation ;-) :)). Can you believe that? Later we walked around and saw the waterfalls :)..

From there we moved onto the Cascades section which had waterfalls of various sizes and this one was the largest in the entire hotel!

Cascades was more humid (again catering to the plants :-D) and we moved on, first to the Garden conservatory, which had lots of varieties of plants and which is supposedly "the" place for weddings ;-).

Then onto Magnolia where they had discos and swimming pools (they even had a Godiva chocolates boutique where I spent some of our hard-earned money without much persuasion :-D) and later to the Convention center which had very large ballrooms :). Then we returned to Delta and had lunch at a buffet place called the Waterfront marketplace. As vegetarians, we got to eat mostly salads and breads, but they had a heavenly dessert buffet and I must have tried some 6 desserts (I know I know, greedy me :-D). That made the whole thing totally worth it ;-). I had cooked Snugli's lunch and packed it early in the morning, so there was no problem there.

After that, we saw a bit of the Opry mills outlet and then drove onto Louisville where we had planned to see the 4th of July fireworks. It looked like it was going to rain but it held till about 10 PM when the rain and the fireworks started :-p. Anyways, the rain soon stopped and we were able to enjoy the firework show :). It was the first set of fireworks Snugli actually was awake to see and that made it extra special :).

And that was it, we drove back and were at home within midnight and were also able to enjoy the Sunday as we had planned. Just when I keep thinking that we have seen enough of East coast as such, we keep finding places like this :). Lets hope we have many others like this :)). Also, wouldn't really mind going to Opryland and actually staying in lodgings sometime ;-).

Friday, August 21, 2009

The day is back ;-).

Hurray its finally the day!! The day I'm off my diet :-D.

Oh wait, I did not mean to say that ;-). What I meant to say is that today is the day I turn 29!! Yup, I'm 29 :))).

You may think that I am too old for compliments (;-) :-D),

or for cake, or in general for surprises :-D,

But you are WRONG!! :-D :))).

Love them as much as I used to :-D. I'm growing old, not forgetful ;-).

By the way, one thing I am sad about this year. Its one of these weird things I noticed when I turned 20. Since 2000 till now, the first and last digits of the year have matched my age (In 2001, I turned 21, in 2005 I turned 25 and so on). And this is the last year when that happens. Next year when I turn 30, it'll be 2010. So there goes my secret enjoyment :(.

Wait a min. Next year I turn 30. 30?? Now that I'm not so crazy about :-p.

Oh well, looking forward to the big three-oh :-D.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The b(d)rainwaves..

Oh man, I haven't updated the blog for days. I still have so much to write about - our Nashville trip, the fair we went to - Snugli enjoyed that so much, about how I feel I'm becoming more and more judgmental and what not. Oh wait, I've also been planning to write about the lullabies I sing to Snugli, the rhymes I try and teach her and so many things. I don't know where the time goes. There are so many things to be done. Still haven't completely setup this home - am yet to buy some things to make it look good. I have to atleast make the ground floor look good before we start inviting people home. Sri's friend already invited us once, so we have to invite them to our house too. Moreover we have already had lunch and dinner in our 2 neighbours' houses. I have to invite them this week, but there will be total 10 people and I wonder if I can manage to cook for them. They both have parents around so they have some help, but I have to do most things myself. Before that I have to get the house ready. Maybe I'll make chapathis, bisi bele baath...

This is a sample of the non-stop transmission that goes on and on, day and night in my brain. Sometimes I feel it ticking so bad that I feel its going to explode anytime. I wish it'd just take a break :-p, shutdown for a while you know? Its like a constant bee buzzing in my ears. I feel so tired some days without even doing anything. Sometimes I even have trouble sleeping because my brain refuses to stop. You know whats worse? It keeps ticking in my sleep too, I get these weird dreams which kinda end up making me feel more exhausted! I wish I could drain the thoughts into a pensieve or something (thats a Harry Potter reference for those who don't know :-p) and finally get some peace. I've tried meditation, but no use :(. I don't know how to make it stop.

Hellllllllllllpppppppppppp :))))))))))))))).