Thursday, November 19, 2009
Plan in leisure, repent in haste!
The mall I was working in was one of the oldest in Dubai. (It’s even featured in a couple of Hindi movies back when Dubai was a cool place to be I guess) The customers were mostly Indian and I made atleast one friend a day. But now I’m in an office surrounded by people I don’t really have much in common with. But hopefully, once I understand what exactly it is that they wish me to do, things in general and this job in specific will become much more easier to live with.

What I love the most about my job is that I am truly amazed by my boss. He has impeccable product knowledge of books and book retailing as well as an amazing knack of handling people well. How can you not respect that?

Today I just got a batch of free books, ahh I feel like the dark clouds are lifting already! There I go, being in the here and now again, without a thought for the future. Aren’t reams and reams written telling people how to do that? And millions of people pay money to learn that as well. Well I'm really getting worried about how I'm never worried at all! I’d really like to see a book that says “Wake up you dolt, can’t you see your money and your life are passing you by while you sit around enjoying your immaturity!”

Even now that I’m earning here, all I can think of is how I finance a trip to Europe first. But maybe that’s why I took up this job; so I can finally travel the world and see the places I’ve dreamed of and even those that I’d never dreamed I’d see?

So I’ve spent my free time today calculating which city has the most cost-effective tickets from Dubai, Rome, Paris, London or Oslo. Paris it is! I can get return tickets for half my salary. Isn’t that awesome, I can probably spend the other half on food and hotels? Or will those be more expensive?

Any suggestions about where to go first? France or Italy or Greece or England or Spain or New York or Switzerland or Australia? God, so so so much to do and see. Can’t possibly do all of Europe together, that’ll be one helluva bank-breaking trip! So how should I break it up.? Write in with advice please.

And oh yes, please remember… this is money that I haven’t even earned yet! Joy oh joy!

Special mention to my dear dear Asha for whose wedding I will not be around in person. Truly sorry dear one but I wish you all the very best with everything. Big round of hugs all around!

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posted by Ipshi @ 7:35 pm   4 comments
Friday, November 13, 2009
All new or is it?

Dubai is the ultimate commercial city. Everybody here talks about money... either about spending it, earning it or saving it. That's all anyone is interested in or wants to be. Nobody cares about your health or the crappy weather or the your crappy health because of the aforementioned crappy weather. All they care about is the size of your paycheck and how it compares to theirs, how much you can save in a month, how much you send back home (nearly everyone is an immigrant here) and other variations on the above themes.

I have answered these questions in the above forms and even in the extended bhangra and hip-hop versions so many times. And I thought Bombayiites were materialistic (do I havta take permission from Mr. Raj Thackeray to say the B-word too?)

Dubai is a cleaner, better-roaded, beggarless version of Bombay with hugely pompous-looking buildings. It's like the people here decided to do their version of 'mine's bigger than yours' with buildings. There must be some seriously under-equipped guys out here when you look at the way they're trying to overcompensate for their shortcomings (pun intended). And the funniest part is that most of these huge building still have some construction work going on that was interrupted by the recession and now have the additional baggage of a construction crane lofted atop their heads.

But its the sand which is the most interesting facet here. They've tried so hard to hide it... with loads of tubes running parallely to each other on the sidewalks (which have got to be the most unused sidewalks in the world!!!) These tubes irrigate the sand and half-hearted little clumps of grass and forcibly-flowering shrubs grow there. But there is a thin coating of sand over every part of the city and the visibility is so poor that you can't even see buildings that are just a road away. It's like a mist of nature reminding all us immigrants, "Remember you're in a desert, stay in your little A/C malls and cars and houses all day but I'll always be around you... waiting... till its my time..."

It's very hard for me to miss Bombay when the lit up roads and the ease of getting things of your doorstep and the Hindi-speaking cabbies exemplify Bombay for me everyday. I just think that my friends and family are just a holiday and will catch up with me soon...

Wonder what will it take for the realisation to hit me... more importantly, will I be left standing after the sudden impact?

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posted by Ipshi @ 4:46 am   5 comments
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Dark night, no knight in sight...

Is this what it's all come down to? Till 6 hours ago I was reading all the reports of war in the online strategic war I was playing and now all around me people have TV sets on and they're all saying the same thing. It's almost like someone has started off a systematic attack against my own home.

Firing in 6 places, blasts in 4? God knows what's true and what isn't. I just know the images I saw of CST with blood everywhere, the shots I heard as Taj was being stormed in... Now I'm hearing rumours of a shooting in J W Marriott. People are dying all over the city just because they happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. But is there a right time or place at all in this dark night?

When will this madness end? Crazed people just firing at others who don't even know who they are, don't know what they stand for. What message are you sending across when the person dying for it doesn't know what it is?

Bombay is a city of people trying to work and living each day as it comes, but politicians keep making it an example and so do terrorists. We don't want to be examples anymore.... we just wanna live. Just let us die of old age.

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posted by Ipshi @ 12:46 am   2 comments
Thursday, October 30, 2008
A little push

Sometimes all you need in life is a gentle little push from someone whom you know is not acting out of selfishness. Of course if it carries on for a while (in my case 5 mins or more) or it's my parents doing the talking... then it can be qualified as nagging. For others however, all you need is to hit rock-bottom... I think I am the latter. Read on see what I mean...

1. I've noticed how resistant I am to doing anything that requires will power. If you know me, you know what I'm talking about. I've never been able to go to any hobby classes, to the gym or even to a doc inspite of feeling really unwell all over. And inspite of parents, friends, AA, colleagues, and assorted people giving me gentle pushes, which were completely unselfish (how would me going to a doc benefit them?) I'm still unmoved!

2. My last relationship ended only after a completely traumatised me was faced with a threat to my nieces. That's when FINALLY there was some sanity in my life and a light was switched on at the end of that tunnel.

3. I'm heading back to my college days, and not in any good, acquiring knowledge kind of way. I'm beginning to be just as lazy and snobbish. I mostly never keep appointments if they're in the mornings; never take calls before 12; and don't let others fully finish sentences if i know what they're going to say. This inspite of knowing that my college years were my unhappiest years (I've rubbed off the memory of most of my school years... yes I was not a happy girl)

4. I saw Fashion the other day and could completely empathise with only 1 part of the entire movie. The part where Priyanka finally understands what a wreck she's become and goes crawling back to the one place where she will be enveloped into an oasis of calm... her parents. (Just for the record, it's not worth seeing the movie)

See what I mean? I'm definitely heading somewhere. But the point is, maybe I'm on my way up right now and the going down part is a long way off? Thankfully I will have my parents, my sister and (hopefully :) AA when the rock bottom stage finally hits me... That it will hit me, I am sure of. Though you people could try the gentle pushing thing a little harder maybe?

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posted by Ipshi @ 7:26 pm   3 comments
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Here we go again
I keep doing this, promising to be more frequent but then I didn't want to; primarily because all those promises were to myself. None of my friends would read this blog if I didn't force them to and if I'm writing to myself ; what's the point really? Idealists would say that the best audience is yourself, but I'm not one of those. I look for appreciation from outside and when I don't get it, it brings me down a bit.
This lack of writing material is especially obvious now; now that I have a great forum to bring forth my points of view...
In this one year; my whole world has literally been turned around. I have gotten a job in a newspaper that I've loved for as long as I could remember and I've been given the responsibility of an entire page where I write about society events; celebrities and assorted funnies. Do I love it? Abso-Fucking-Lutely as Mr Big in Sex and the City would say.
So in conclusion, I have a pretty good job, a pretty great guy, obedient parents and my health but being me means never being quite content. Right now my biggest gripe is not having friends; real true friends, people you can call at 4 in the morning because you can't fall asleep, people who'll be there for you if you ever just don't wanna go home till late one night; if you just have to watch a movie today.
No I'm not being selfish, I'd be there for them too. I'm the kind of person who'd go to the ends of the earth for a friend and I'm not trying to show off about this. I wish I really wasn't like this; I wish I was like all the assorted people I've met who think meeting up once a month for coffee is the ultimate friendly gesture.
And it's not like these awesome, mind-numbing friendships don't exist, they just don't happen to me. And I'm pretty convinced it's my fault, just wish I knew what to do...
posted by Ipshi @ 8:27 pm   3 comments
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
A proverbial day in the life of...
Yes, I am going to bore you with details... why? just because I can and well because 10 years down the line I want to remember what I used to do at this stage in my life.

Everyday I wake up at around 11 (yes, i love the luxury of that) and spend the time with myself, pottering about my house and room.
Nowadays, I am in the midst of messing up all my belongings with the firm faith that soon, an unforseen order will emerge from aforesaid chaos. That having been said, this clean-up is long overdue and is part of the very many resolutions made by me for this new year.

At around 1 I start getting ready for work, of course a lot of my time goes in just deciding what to wear. While i'll stand by my belief that I'm not a brand-conscious fashion plate, I (being as fat as i am) do love wearing things that I feel good in and for this I can spend most of my getting-ready time!

at 2 I'm out the door, making my way through congested Mumbai's over-crowded roads, trains and roads again (that's auto, train and cab) to my office.
At 3.30 I finally settle down to work, but my work actually begins at 6... In the meantime I can explore the beautiful blogland and marvel at the wonders all over the world!

I'm finally done at 10 and then, mentally exhausted, I trudge my weary way back home.
Sometimes, if i just can't sleep, i'm up till 4 just mindlessly watching TV. On an off-shoot, I often find mindless TV viewing relaxes me immensely whenever I'm too tired, too stressed out, too angry or upset. I wonder if that's healthy?!? Any views?

On most nights, however, I'm gently lulled to sleep with AA's voice in my ear.... and that's the best end to a day really... and here we go again!


posted by Ipshi @ 9:17 pm   6 comments
Monday, February 04, 2008
My revamp plans
As my resolution for the year, I am going to cover stuff about the city where I live and the city that I love more than myself! Mumbai, well, actually Bombay 'cos that's the name I'm accustomed to. Let's start off with a review of a restaurant I love going to...

Nando's at Inorbit Malad.

Let's get the negative stuff out of the way, it's set a little apart from the rest of the mall's food court but it's still pretty noisy; there's not a lot of variation in the menu; and veggies dont hav much choice. The desserts too are a no-go. You have the options of having a beer or wine with your meal but again, the choices are highly limited!

Now for the good part, the few choices they do have, they're very good at. They specialise in chicken and it has always been (and I've been there often) really well marinated.

Watch out for the rice as it may be on the dry side but as the service is good, you can point it out before you eat too much and get an exchange. The salads are good too and the few vegetarian options are a delight.

Of special mention are the wraps and burgers. Do not and I mean do not forget to order for the special Peri Peri (that's the spice they specialise in) lemonade - it's nothing special until you hit it with an extra dash for the special spice that's available on every table.

Everything here comes with the choice of either Extra Hot, Hot, Mild or Lemon and Herb spicing. I always opt for the extra hot sauce 'cos that's just me... but I have seen my sister and friends struggle with even the simple hot variant. So be extra careful when you order.

One of the best parts of this restaurant is that they even allow you to buy the sauces, which you can use as a marinade for chicken or vegetables back home!

Nando's Peri Peri restaurant
2nd Floor, Inorbit Mall, Malad
phone number - 28785252, 65733849

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posted by Ipshi @ 5:50 pm   4 comments
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Location: Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

It is only in my 30s that I have realised I will never be the elegant lady who can wear white without spilling something on it. I recognise my blessings like my family, my friends & my job & I am letting go of my fears of writing & just jumping in. I love my job. It has given me the opportunity to live in a city where I am surrounded by the most amazing friends in the world & the most surreal experiences. It also gives me the opportunity to read great books & travel to fascinating new countries. Join me as I share these with the world.

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