May 26, 2016

Ma’salama

Whenever I was asked the casual “So, where are you from?” question, I found myself debating the answer in my head. Should I say Calcutta, where I was born? Or is it Oman, where I spent over two decades? Eventually, I always launch into a lengthy explanation which probably made the person asking the question immediately regret it! Ha. The beautiful, yet relatively undiscovered Sultanate I grew up in is where my mind goes to, when I think of a happy place. There aren’t any nosy relatives here, no politics, no negativity. Just my family, pristine beaches, clear blue skies and really amazing shawarma. What’s not to love! But it…

May 22, 2016

This Time Next Week…

…everything will be different. A lot I love would be left behind. A number of new experiences will await. It is unnerving, to say the least. 

December 30, 2015

Roundup

This year hasn’t been the most productive for the blog, but I’ve tried to keep it alive by documenting my travels and random thoughts. As is tradition, I thought I’d put together highlights from 2015. So here goes – in no particular order! > Spent Pujo in Calcutta with my parents, grandmother and extended family. Good times. > Finally took a trip with Ankita and Aditya. Since Chops and I lived in a small one bedroom apartment in Gurgaon, and were paid peanuts, we dreamt of doing this. Budapest was explored and the bucket list item ticked off! Trip highlights here. > Got into heated arguments with friends on their…

December 20, 2015

Where is the love?

I know it’s that time of the year where all is good and jolly, but for a while I have struggled with some negativity and I thought that now would be a good time to let it go.  I’m not sure whether this has anything to do with my star sign or the fact that I have been raised with stories of the goodness in people, that I do not yet look for the worst in humankind, at the first go. When I meet someone new, I am usually excited – and find myself thinking that perhaps we will be great friends, perhaps I will find someone as driven to…

September 17, 2015

Counting blessings.

It just dawned me on a few days ago that this September marked three years of my move from India to Oman. It was a dizzying thought, to picture how the time had flown past. When most people ask me what it is like, here – I usually complain. I find myself harping over the 10 months of summer, the lack of public transportation, the general aura of apathy that the country wears, my friendless-ness and the list could really go on. Sitting at my recently redecorated cubicle on a particularly optimism-filled day, I thought to myself of how much good had come out of these past few years. There…

August 20, 2015

South African Sojourn

For years I have been intrigued by the largest and oldest inhabited continent on the planet, the melting pot of culture and civilization from time immemorial, the home to the wildest and the gentlest – Africa. The only time I have stepped in it was as a teenager, when my parents took me to Egypt, and I distinctly remember being stunned by all what it had to offer, even at that young age. So, when my cousin mentioned he wanted to go someplace interesting for the Eid holidays this year, the idea of southern Africa sprung to mind immediately. Given my recent travels and affinity towards spending hours on message…

July 12, 2015

Oprah Winfrey once said, and I would like to quote and edit:  “If friends people disappoint you over and over, that’s in large part your own fault. Once someone has shown a tendency to be self-centered indifferent, you need to recognize that and take care of yourself; people aren’t going to change simply because you want them to.” As I grow older, I see people drifting apart, little by little. Some friends cannot find time to check up on others or reply to emails. Some family cannot manage to remember important dates. Some spouses who couldn’t be bothered to buy each other flowers.  Some promises which have been long forgotten. As difficult…

July 4, 2015

Paris of the East

They say that the friends you make at school and college are the ones who last a lifetime. I wasn’t so fortunate during school, but met the most wonderful people during my years in Pune and Gurgaon – and I am ever so grateful. When Ankita and I lived and worked together at Edelman, things were not always painless and tranquil, given our limited means, but I think of those days fondly as some of the best years of my life – yet. So, when she mentioned that Aditya and her were planning to see some more of Europe and asked me if I would like to join, I almost…

June 29, 2015

Wish

I’ve always had it in for emotional advertising; so much that I still have a folder tucked away in my hard disk that contain the few that pulled on heartstrings. During the MBA, and through my personal reading, I realised that this was a deliberate strategy by brands into making us associate with them through the emotional connect. Lately, my favourite digital media specialist wrote about this societal dimension of brand building on his blog and I was made to think of Flipkart’s most recent #AbHarWishHogiPoori campaign. I am already a Flipkart user, and even a brand ambassador of sorts, but for me, this had nothing to do with e-commerce….