Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Atlast into hibernation i go.....

Who doesn’t love to go into hibernation,once in a while?
With the sun always rising-in-the-East and setting-in-the-West type of mundane schedules, nothing like pepping it up with a vacation, ain’t it?

Since my Rajasthan plans toppled and disappeared without a sign, I had to make do with the last-minute travel plan to Mahabaleshwar and Panchgani.

The train journey from Hyd to Pune was uneventful (no kids crying and no drunken fights to be witnessed) and was spent in devouring the lip-smacking aloo-palak and rotis I’d made. The next day saw me donning the avatar of TMK (Tol Mol Ke Bol, a nick-name given by A to officially announce my bargaining skills!!) and in order not to let him down, I successfully managed to arrange a taxi from Pune to M’war for 900 bucks (n the rates had started at 1500!)

Day two we started on a 5km trek to the Tableland of Panchgani.
Tableland is an absolutely stunning flat stretch of land running to 6kms and overlooking the valley.
The story of Pandavas being there seems like a load of horseshit; as if people would visit the place only in case it has any mythological references!
Anywayz we took a tonga ride for the entire stretch and my friends were ready to throw me out in case I utter ‘nother word of pity for the horse (poor thing, itz not as if 4 well-fed adults are made of feathers!!!)

Day three saw us climbing up and down hills since we decided to cover all points of importance in Mahabaleshwar. Now what would happen if ppl, whose daily dose of exercise comprises of taking a flight of stairs or walking till the corner shop down the road, start trekking??? Blistered feet and sweat strained photos but in the end, it was all worth it.

Frankly I had underestimated the beauty of both these hill stations and they say that it is even more beautiful during the monsoon. The Sayadhri ranges are beautiful – sometimes they appear dry and dusty and at other times it is filled with lush-green valleys. The Krishna river has never looked more beautiful and watching sunset was ‘nother of those Wordsworthy moments (They flash upon that inward eye … types)

Now coming to food and drinks – I loved every bit of the sweet corn they sell all over the place there –fresh and juicy, u can almost gobble it in 2 minutes (now u know where all those so called ‘American Sweet Corn’ comes from??)
Totally freaked out on the vada-pav, which was served piping hot and spicy. Unfortunately for us, this year the monsoon had affected the strawberry plantation hence they weren’t yet out in the market. And u get these yummy dates which are flavored to taste exactly like sweet-paan and I gobbled so many of them ,not forgetting to bring back boxes of them.
The resort din’t serve alcohol but we sneaked in a few bottles of vodka and had a fun party in the room!

So what r u waiting for?? strawberrys r beckoning...

Monday, December 12, 2005

Loneliness adds beauty to life. It puts a special burn on sunsets and makes night air smell better.

Volumes must've been written about Satyajit Ray's school of filmmaking; since I'm ignorant about the actual nuances of filmmaking I wouldn't delve into such details.
But that wudnt stop me from going gaga over Charulata - which I had watched recently.The only other Ray movie I had watched was Nayak - while in school and all that I can recollect are the odd bits and pieces of it.

Without further delay, lemme proceed to 'Charulata' -which seemed to me like poetry on celluloid. Since the greatness of this film perhaps lies in the emotions spoken through silence I wasn’t in the least concerned about my not knowing Bengali.(but yaa the English sub-titles helped)

What is amazing is the way u can actually feel Charu's loneliness, whether it a simple glance at her husband or the way she looks at Amol.
The story actually is like a breeze and u feel sad for Charu - not the melancholy type of sadness (if u know what I mean) because u must remember she has a loving husband who has no time for her whatsoever and realizing this he asks Amol to look after her.

My favorite scene is the one in the garden where Charu is on the swing and looks at Amol through her opera glasses -it is then u start realizing that she is in love with Amol -heard that this was a 8 minute long sequence but with no dialogues spoken at all!

'nother scene worth mentioning is when Amol's work gets published and Charu locks herself and is suddenly teary-eyed -I think any woman can relate to this feeling -tears because of jealousy.
But one thing I pondered 'bout was what exactly did Amol feel for her? Perhaps I must read Tagore's original story to find it because in the movie u get so engrossed in Charu's feeling that u dun seem to care 'bout anyone else but her.

Never before have I seen love depicted so beautifully -there is no mention of it whatsoever but the small acts of everyday life bring out the feeling so beautifully.
Charulata is a must-watch for anyone who enjoys watching a beautiful and well-made movie.

I think this is just the beginning of my foray into Satyajit Ray's works, I’m now eager to watch all his major works, all the while ensuring that I bug u people ‘bout it….

Thursday, December 01, 2005

When life hands u a lemon, ask for the Tequila and the Salt

Sometimes it takes two, sometimes three and sometimes itz more....
I’m speaking 'bout the no. Of drinks it takes to hit people.
Here I'm deliberately avoiding any mention of those who would get sufficed with a few of what I call 'Ink-Filler shots' - S is one such girl - just give her one small Smirnoff+orange juice and she would conk off in no time.

These days Ladies Night is when the pubs rake in their moolah - the ladies seem to be happy with their highly-diluted-fruit-juice-type-of-drinks and the guys, with just looking at the ladies.

But whatever happened to me last night??? Generally it is while downing my third drink I feel like singing 'Aaj kal paav zameen par nahi padthe mere'...
but end of three drinks and a Flaming Shot n 3 Marlboro lights, I still find my feet firmly on the ground.
So ladies night is not when you are in a mood for real dhaaru n sutta (are the Hyd'badi gals listening???)

In other news, the Half Marathon and the 10K run was a huge success at Hyd, obviously 10K having more participants than the former. Statistics (which I dont bother to verify) would definitely attribute this to none other than Ms.Mirza, who was very much present at the run - no, not as a participant but as an ornament on the dais where other Tollywood stars and the much-booed Salman Khan (couldn’t they come up with a better role model???) were present....

The sun-rise (which seemed like the Halo of the Buddha) and the parachutes landing on the grounds made my waking, at an unearthly hour of 4.30am, really worthwhile.

(Warning: I'm no good when it comes to clicking pictures and these photos are testimony of that fact.)