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Friend.Chocoholic.Tantrum-thrower.Child.Woman.Whatever !!!!!!!!

Posts Tagged ‘life

Confessions of a New Driver

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I have finally taken the plunge. I have finally bought a car. I am finally driving myself around.

 

For so many years I was driven around – by our driver, by the cabbie, by friends, by my mom. Friends encouraged me to learn how to drive. And I’d brandish my driving license at them. Yes I have had a license since 2004.

The story began when I learnt how to shift gears in a  stationary car way back when I was 15 on my Dad’s office waali gaadi, a heavy duty Ambassador. Fast forward to 2004. I went to a driving school, learnt how to drive and got my license as well made. Thereafter I never drove again. I made a few ventures on our Vento last year on lovely empty Gurgaon roads on bright sunny afternoons with the driver. The moment any other vehicle was anywhere on the same road (even if it was 5 kms behind me) I’d simply freeze. If anyone whizzed past me, I’d panic and start randomly pressing at any pedal. The driver diplomatically convinced me to drop the idea. Now fast forward to March 2015 when I joined my new office (which is 33 kms from home, that is faaaaaarr). A second car became a most urgent need. Not wanting to see all my money going in paying the EMI, driver’s salary and fuel bills, I decided it was high time I learnt (re-learnt) how to drive. Hence, lots of research happened (which meant I checked a couple of sites online to get an idea of the prices and then called a friend who’s very gyaani about cars). Also I was very clear that I didn’t want to invest my hard earned money in a second hand car. The husband decreed that we would hire a second driver to teach me for the next few months.

My lovely silver Polo joined our family and we became a 2 car household in April.  Then began the hunt for another driver (since my husband didn’t want our driver running away because he had to teach me how to drive). I went through 4 drivers in about 2 months. Driver No. 1 ran away after I drove 10 kms at an agonizing 30 kms per hour and took me about 45 minutes on a relatively empty road. Driver No. 2 lasted for 15 days. Driver No. 3 was fired after the second day since I had to keep reminding him to use the indicator. Driver No. 4 lasted the longest – a full 18 days. Driver Nos. 2 & 4 managed to teach me somewhat to drive and not freeze there were other vehicles on the road. I was terrible at easing the car into first gear. The car would grind to a start under my confused control of the clutch & accelerator and then shudder to a halt. Every damn time. I’d hate stopping at signals because there’d be a queue of cars behind me honking away. I’d get tense. The car would not start. I’d get more tense. Cue more honking. I’d finally get out of the driver’s seat in a huff, apologetically smile at the cars behind me and get into the backseat.  Driver No. 2 was sadistic (actually, he was very sweet). He’d make me drive the car a few meters. Then stop. Then ease into first gear again. several times a day. Rinse. Repeat. Till I got it right. Driver No. 4 was even more sadistic ( actually, he was also quite sweet). “Madam, aap mat dariye. Aap chaliye.” He made me drive on crowded roads. With multiple lanes.Cars switching between lanes without any indicators. In start – stop traffic. He’d nonchalantly wave at the honking cars behind me and point to the big red ‘L’ on the windshield. Till one day I realized that I wasn’t scared anymore of the other vehicles on the road. I wasn’t freezing in traffic. I was one among the other cars on the road.

After Driver No. 4, I tried to convince the husband that I could now drive solo to work. He asked me to take him for a drive. Knuckles turned white, lips were clenched and not a single word was spoken at the  end of the drive. He had a really stiff drink at the end of it. Then he convinced our regular driver to go with me for a couple of more weeks. He sat in the backseat so I wouldn’t feel him figuratively standing on my head inside the car. After that I rebelled and decided it was time for me to drive solo. Surprisingly, the husband agreed. Without any arguments. That fact by itself made it a red letter day. Then I started driving solo. It takes me two hours on an average each way (because I’m too fattu to speed beyond 60 kms). I call the office boy down to guide me with parking when I reach work. The main thing is that I drive myself. Please take a moment to acknowledge that.  This is empowering for me. I spent too many years being scared. Till I just decided that I am going to buy a car and drive it.I am woman. Hear me roar!

And stay out of my way when I’m on the road. I might just flip the finger at you if you switch lanes without an indicator or drive on full beam in well-lit roads or honk at me to go faster on a crowded road or suddenly go from the extreme right to turn left blocking the traffic or are a two wheeler meandering away on the road or have that horrible white disco-dancing LED light or suddenly zoom out of a lane onto incoming traffic without checking almost causing a pile-up. And if you have an ‘L’ on your car, I’m going to give you a big smile & thumbs-up as I pass you by. 

Written by SupMM

July 29, 2015 at 5:22 pm

Hitting the Ground Running

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Its been 3 weeks since I started my new job. Its been a huuuuge change for me in more ways than one – some good and well some better 🙂

I hit the ground running from the day I joined. Its been  a whole different ball game for me – the work is the same and yet its different. The setup is entirely different from what I am familiar with. I had to learn terms like ‘vertical’ and ‘super area’ and ‘CAM’ etc. I learnt how to balance the legal angle with the commercial angle. Actually I am still learning. I was on the job from Day 1 – a job where the previous guy before me had quit a while back, pending work, the guy reporting to me down with dengue so it meant my having to figure out  alot of stuff on my own through trial and error.  The good part is thhat its  really close to my house – it takes me 15 minutes if I leave before 9 am and 40 minutes after 9 am. And I have Saturdays off 🙂

The one thing which I really do miss here (besides not going to Court) and which kept me going in my previous firm was my friends there. I made some very close friends there and we’d cover up for each other. I don’t see that happening here. My new colleagues are fun, but I miss my old friends – our horsing around, arguing a point of law at the top of our voices, rushing off to the library to gossip, the eating & hogging, the impromptu visits to Morrisson, going to Lajpat & Khan Market during lunch. I hope to make some friends here soon. I already made a few of them come with me to Nirulas one of these days for ice cream. And I am trying to convince everyone to wear a sari one of the days next week because I ma going to be very depressed since I am not going to Cal this time for Pujo. I am super depressed because of that.

Written by SupMM

October 5, 2010 at 11:57 pm

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Getting over a one & half month weekend!!!

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We have some news people….we return to the world of the earning & employed tomorrow. We are no longer the Great Unemployed from 13.09.2010 onwards. My one and half month weekend comes to an end. Getting severe Monday morning blues. Also a little bit of excitement & nervousness in equal parts. There is the excitement of joining somewhere new – new challenges, new people, a fresh start. There is also the nervousness of moving out of my comfort zone, moving into a whole different setup from what I am used to, the expected politics, leading a new team, the people etc.

I am glad I took this time out for myself and regained some of what I had lost out working crazy hours and practically no weekends. It took a severe toll on my health, apart from the fact that I had not had a proper break of more than 4-5 days at a stretch. I spent some good time with my parents in Calcutta and when I got back to Gurgaon, I came down with a regular cold & cough which left me feeling extremely weak & listless, despite the rest and care that I took.  It took me quite a while to bounce back. I see another friend of mine who has been put on a compulsory 2 week bed rest by the doctors because her body has completely broken down from the stress, work pressure & long irregular hours. I don’t want to be there at the age of 27. I spent lots of time with the Hujband. And I learnt that being sincere towards one’s work always pays in the long run but there is a line I need to draw somewhere between work & life. I have enjoyed this period of doing aboslutely nothing & whiling away days. I did some bit of cooking but mostly spent time with myself. I think I am my own best company. Yes I know that sounds narcisstic. But its a fact. It took some courage to quit my job without another job in hand. But i didn’t regret it for even one moment. (Except the part where I couldn’t shop as I had to cut down on my frivolous expenditure).

The Hujband took me out to celebrate the day I signed the papers. I also shopped finally after ages. I bought two t-shirts & two formal shirts. Oh! And neither of the shirts are white or black & white. I have no idea what non-formal Indian formals are like. I have only bought white/ black & white suits for the past four years. Currently my entire work  wear is black & white. I am looking forward to wearing coloured formals. And having a 5 day week. And regular working hours. We rounded off the super long month & half weekend with a rocking party to bring in the Hujband’s 33rd birthday. Or as he puts it he is 16 years old with 17 years experience 😛

So its back to work for me tomorrow.

 

Written by SupMM

September 12, 2010 at 8:36 pm

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Sue Me!!! I Am Selfish!!!

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Ever since I have decided to take a sabbatical, I have had people wondering about whether we’r starting a family and if we are, then getting upset because we haven’t told them about it. I have had random people message me, ping me on FB and call me to ask how many months along am I. How weird and how rude is that? They jumped to their own conclusions and think its rude when I get offended. What strated as a joke has snowballed into something else all together. How difficult is is to understand that I have taken some time off for myself – to sleep, eat, cook, bake, read, write, do up my house, take driving lessons, learn a new language. I know most people don’t generally take some time off right when their career starts peaking, but I did it. I was kind of freaked out at thinking I hadn’t really done anything new since I started working. I don’t have kids right now. I do nothing all day if I so choose or I maybe a whirlwind doing twenty things in one day. And no I haven’t taken time off to get pregnant either. The Hujband tells me to enjoy this time because we don’t know when I would ever get time off like this.

If that is selfish, then yes I am selfish. Sue me.

Written by SupMM

September 3, 2010 at 10:25 am

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Sabbatical: Day 3/ Mommy’s Birthday

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Day 3 of my sabbatical began with a call from an ex-colleague with whom I haven’t really been in touch since I moved to Delhi barring the random FB comments & likes. She was calling to find out about the collague’s husband who has been admitted to hospital. He may have to go in for a surgery tomorrow. Please pary for them.

I also had a few calls from office.

Today is my mother’s birthday and I celebrated it with my parents after ten years. I left for college in 2001 and college would be on in full swing by July end.  Thereafter, I got busy with work. This was the main reason why I came to Calcutta on 27th and will not meet the Hujband for 26 days. he left for his tour on 21st and I left for Cal on 27th. he gets back on 29th and will be in town for 4-5 days before touring again and we will meet only on 16th when we both return home. This is the longest time that we have stayed apart since we got married. Anyway, I chilled the entire morning and afternoon, then went and got the cake. The good thing about Calcutta is the abundance and variety of public transportation available which means I don’t need to take to get the car out everytime; unlike Gurgaon where there is practically no public transportation. I picked up a chocolate truffle from Kookie Jar which we cut when my mom returned home from work. I took her out for dinner later in the evening to Mocambo where I had a fish steak and Ma had a chicken sizzler. I quite like the ambience and it gives stiff competition to Peter Cat. Noone can beat Peter Cat’s chelo kebabs though and I shall now be forced to say that the fish steak at Mocambo rocks as well. that wraps up my day today.

Over and out for now. Tomorrow shall be a new day.

 

Written by SupMM

July 28, 2010 at 11:56 pm

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Pros & Cons of a Sabbatical

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I’m excited. Its ben ages since I have made plans and been able to follow through with them.

I’m making plans of meeting a friend who’s in India for a month; spending time with my parents; of re-learning driving; of trying out the various recipes I have been wanting to try; of maybe picking up the guitar again; going on a weekend trip with friends. These are the upside of taking a sabbatical.

The downside of taking a sabbatical is NO SHOPPING. The sales are on everywhere and I need to be careful with the money and not shop. Understandably so. I saw this amazing silk blend formal jumpsuit yesterday at a 40% markdown. In merawala pink, AND I COULDN’T BUY IT. As in I could have but I DIDN’T BUY IT. Kindly appreciate. The Hujband didn’t understand what the fuss was all about 😥

Another downside is me having to return the faithful Blackberry to the office and having to buy a sasta, sundar Samsung Corby 😦

Written by SupMM

July 19, 2010 at 1:52 pm

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Randomness ‘R’ Us

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Ummm hellooo poeples…yes you. Yes yes YOU. My sole reader.

I haven’t dropped off the earth yet. Yes I know that’s what you all thought and that’s why you all held a two minute silence and struck my name off the blogger’s roll. But please don’t do that. Kindly lend me a year…err ear. Its me. Do you need some photo ID?

Now where have I been is your question? Busy in work *sob sob*. I no longer have a life. The little bit of social life that I had is long buried under mounds and mounds of work. And I haven’t even got an increment in 15 months. Blame the bloody recession. I need to go tell my boss “SHOW ME THE MONEY” ala Tom Cruise, but doubt if he’s going to appreciate that much right now. Clients are slowly coming back and its boom time. But no bloody raise…YET. Well we can always hope can’t we?

  • In other random news, our Goa plan this month has been canned.
  • I’m going to Calcutta next month for 2-3 days to meet my parents and more importantly, meet my fairy god hild
  • Well her mother (my BFF since the past ten years) has appointed me her fairy god mother which makes her my fairy godchild. And she’s called Dia. And she is going to be 5 months in May. And I haven’t seen her for so long because my BFF stays in New Jersey which is saat samundar paar.
  • God save me from mad clients.
  • We have finally found a cook. Her day to day vegetarian food is decent which means I am taking a dabba to work everyday.
  • I am also trying hard to eat healthy so I carry some fruits from home to eat whenever I’m hungry instead of having maggi or some other junk food.
  • I can’t think of what is to be made everyday so I take suggestions from the mothers, from colleagues at work, from twitter.
  • I am also open to suggestions here.
  • Oh and did I mention that its my fairy godchild’s annaprasan which means I need to be dressed up in a sari.
  • My brain’s gone on a strike today and I have some important filings tomorrow.
  • I haven’t drafted a word today which means I shall repent tomorrow.
  • I decided to compound that by bullying one of my colleagues to accompany me for brownies and ice cream.
  • I shall try and be more regular.
  • All my drafting skills go in my work and when it comes to writing a blog post, I am all drafted out.
  • I shall neverthless try and be more regular.
  • Oh and I have 4 weddings to attend in Juny & July. And we need to attend all of them – 2 are in Calcutta on different dates, 1 in Bombay and 1 in Delhi.
  • That means more saris btw.
  • Yup I’m all drfated out for now. Like I said brain is on strike. my fingers have typed this out with no instructions from the brain.

Hence the randomness.

Written by SupMM

April 8, 2010 at 7:11 pm

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Nineteen Minutes

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“In nineteen minutes, you can mow the front lawn, color your hair, watch a third of a hockey game. In nineteen minutes, you can bake scones or get a tooth filled by a dentist; you can fold laundry for a family of five.

Nineteen minutes is how long it took the Tennessee Titans to sell out of tickets to the play-offs. It’s the length of a sitcom, minus the commercials. It’s the driving distance from the Vermont border to the town of Sterling, New Hampshire.

In nineteen minutes, you can order a pizza and get it delivered. You can read a story to a child or have your oil changed. You can walk a mile. You can sew a hem.

In nineteen minutes, you can stop the world, or you can just jump off it.

In nineteen minutes, you can get revenge.”

How would you react if you have been bullied and humiliated by your schoolmates from your very first day in school? How would you react if your parents are too busy praising their perfect son and that son is not you, but your eldert brother? How would you react if your elder brother is the one who initiated the bullying in school? How would you react if your parents are too buys mourning his loss and have practically forgotten that you also exist? How would you react if your best friend from childhood no longer wants to be seen with you or talk to you or remain friends with you? How would you react if you find it easier to hide from the rest of the kids? How would you react if your pants are pulled down in front of the entire school as a “joke”? How would you react if a private mail sent by you is circulated among the whole school and turned into a joke?


How would you as a mother react if your told that there has been a random shooting in your son’s school? How would you react if your told that its your 17 year old son who was the shooter? How would you react if your told that he killed ten other innocent unarmed students, injured many more and has caused grief to so many families?


How would you as a judge react if your told that you have to try thew case of a 17-year old who is your daughter’s schoolmate and her childhood best friend? How would you react as a mother when you see your daughter injured because of this shooter? How would you as a mother react when you see the pain and grief of your daughter who has lost her two best friends and boy friend in the shooting? How would you walk the fine line of being a mother and judge not letting one influence the other?


How would you react when you see your best friend from childhood has grown apart from you? how would you react when you see this friend be humiliated by your boy friend whom you otherwise love very much? How would you react when a private mail written to you by this friend is circulated among the whole school and is turned into a joke? How would you react when you see your boy friend and best friends humiliate him every single day? how would you react when you don’t like the humiliation suffered by your friend but can’t stand upto your friends? how do you react when your called on a witness in court and questioned on this?

We’r all envious of the popular kids who have it all – the friends, the looks, the girl/ guy? The one ones who get invited to all the parties? The ones who forget their homework and don’t get yelled at by the teacher? But what about the vast majority of kids who go through school unseen? or even worse are picked upon, humiliated and bullied every single day? Those who dread school. Those who try to hide in the wall and make themselves as small as possible so that noone sees them and0picks on them? Ever thought about them.


That’s what 19 Minutes by Jodi Picoult is all about. I have sad this earlier and I say it again – this is one author whose books I enjoy and who actually makes me think. As a rule, I don’t go in for too much heavy reading, but I make an exception for Jodi Picoult.

Written by SupMM

March 5, 2010 at 6:25 pm

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I am petty. So what?

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My mom’s always told me ‘Chaadar dekh ke pair pasarna”  which basically meant “Check your wallet before you spend”.

That’s one lesson I learnt well in my first few months when I moved out of home and actually handled money for the first time. I’d get x amount a month and I’d divide it in 4 to be used for the  4 weeks accordingly. After the first fiasco (where my mom bailed me out and then cut the same amount from the coming month’s money), I only had to ask for extra money once in 3rd year and then for my last couple of months in Pune. If I ever made the mistake of calling home and wailing I’m broke, I’d only get a huge lecture for the next few days so I never did that. My emergency money stash was kept with one of my close friends and vice versa so that we didn’t spend it.

I still follow that philosophy today. I know the chunk of my expenses and only after I have allocated for those, do I look at my frivolous kharchas.

Unfortunately, I fail to understand why most people don’t do that. Quite a few times have the office boys/ peons come wailing saying “kid’s school fees” or “shaadi kharcha”. Dude, if you can’t afford your kid’s school fees then find a cheaper school or budget your marriage accordingly. Just because I’m in a higher salary bracket and have no kids does not mean that I be made to take on your expenses. A sudden emergency is a different issue but why should I be made to feel guilty that someone’s kid doesn’t have shoes. If you know that you make x and have to run your entire household on that amount, then budget accordingly. Don’t come crying to me. And if you can’t afford to maintain 2 kids why have a 3rd kid and then expect the office to pitch in. It simply pisses me off. When one of the clerk/ peons get married, apart from the cash gift from office (which is not a small sum), we also give a good sum of money as cash. Why should I be asked to pay for something over and above that? If you can’t pay for your own marriage, then take out a loan or budget accordingly. That’s really not my business or my headache.

And when a few of us do say this in office, then we are taken to be petty or hard – hearted. I don’t get that. I don’t come crying to office and ask everyone to pay off my credit card bills or my house rent? In essence, if your coming to me for your  kid’s fees it is the same thing. Why don’t people understand that if I earn a certain sum, my expenses are also proportionate. Looking after your expenses is your responsibility – whether you earn 2000/- or 20,000/- or 2,00,000/-. And if I say I’l help budget their expenses, they tell me its not my business. Sorry but if your coming to me every month and think it ios your birthright to demand a handout, it is my business.

This is after all my hard earned money too and I have a say over how I spend it. Whether I choose to spend it on a watch for myself or help someone someone is my call. If it is deemed petty so be it.

Written by SupMM

March 4, 2010 at 6:23 pm

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Tragedywala Weekend

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This weekend was a complete tragedy for me in terms of food. Now before we get started on the woeful  saga (arthath ‘dukhbhari katha’ ) of my weekend, let me bring to your kind attention that I am a self-confessed foodie, whose food interest are however, very much restricted to tried and tested food items. I refuse to venture where I have not gone before. I love eating what I already like to eat. I am very much vocal about my likes and dislikes when it comes to food. Getting me to try out something new is a major task unto itself which few have dared to attempt after their first tries have miserably failed. My roommate of three years in Pune though did manage to introduce me to the joys of gajar ka  halwa, which is probably the only time in history that I have eaten and liked something new.

Now that you know some of the background, I shall begin my dukhbhari katha.

This Saturday, on our way back from work, I proposed a dinner out to the Hujband, who readily agreed (and here I was all set to build my case for dinner out). The only condition being I had to decide where to go since he wasn’t in the mood todecide. Thus, we landed up at this super-exclusive Itqlian resteraunt (with an Italian chef) in Gurgaon. We called for some prawn antipasto, which basically turned out to be sadda Dilliwala channa masala with prawns in it. Tolerable. I wanted to try some pasta for the main course, but the host kept telling me to try the “authentic Italian pizza” – it being different from the other American pizzas readily available. On his recommendation, I tried some chicken pizza, which basically turned out to be tomato puree, cheese and boiled chicken. Yes that’s it – no salt, masalas, nothing. My desi taste buds were offened and I was constrained to ask for chilli flakes and oregano which offended the Italian sensibilties of the chef, who personally came out and tried to convince me not to defile it. I sprinkled generous amounts of oregano and chilli flakes etc…but didn’t help. I struggled valiantly though one and a half slices till I gave up. The host tried to convince me for some pasta, but I was obviously very sceptical. He finally recommended chocolate mousse for which I agreed. Only to repent. The chocolate mousse tasted of anything but chocolate.  Apparently, it had a filling of balsamic strawbeery, so the end rest of the mousse was that it just tasted weird – neither chocolate, nor strawberry nor balsamic.

[I ended up having a chicken tikka sandwich and coffee as dinner at DT before we went in for the late night show of 3i (which we were seeing for the second time) and absolutely loved].

Next tragedy was my Sunday lunch when we called for mutton biryani from Deez, but the mutton was not cooked properly and again I couldn’t have it. Called up the Deez guys and gave them an earful and turned down their offer to send another handi.

My last and final tragedy was my Sunday dinner where I made dal, chawal and fish fry. Fish was perfectly fried red and crisp – but had not been cut properly and the fish was bitter 😦

So that sums up my tragedy-wala weekend in terms of food.  

[I demanded good food for lunch the next day at work, as opposed to our usual thali ;P]

 PPS: I started drafting this post on Monday, but managed to complete it only today.

Written by SupMM

January 15, 2010 at 1:38 pm

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