15 from 15

My biggest resolution for ’16 is to be positive. I hurt my finger 3 days back and I took a positive step by not panicking at the sight of blood and positively put a band-aid on it from a box that had a big “+” symbol on it. So much positivity is happening! Jokes apart, I am serious about being “+”. I cannot guarantee how long I will stick to this but this is how I have interpreted my retrospects for now-  a list of all my lowlights and highlights from 2015:

1. I wasted a lot of time.
A LOT! Wasted time on stupid things on internet, on incomplete projects and on useless gossip. Lesson learnt. I should have at least written sriramajayam all this time for punyam.
Anyways, I did come across some nice magazines like outofprintmagazine and good blogs like madrasink, padmum and mrigankwarrier. Please suggest good sites that you have come across{Bhagawan ke naam pe}.

2. I was open to failures and criticism.
Failure in my life is like that one FB friend whom you try to avoid deliberately but he catches you however and ruins your mood with nasty talk. And criticism is just the elder brother of failure. It’s hard to escape from these tragic bros and it is necessary to tackle them with wit and patience. In relation to this, some reality check happened this year and I have accepted that it is for my own good.

3. Cleaned my friends list.
I still have 500+ friends in my fb list for the record. But that is not the measure you want. Real friends are those people who “like” you for what you are and help you better yourself instead of picking on your shortcomings and bitching about it. I realized I’ve few such friends and I’ve been a true friend to just some few.

Free advice: Distancing from negative thoughts and gossip will save you from lot of nonsense and gives you mental peace.

4.Traveled.
Or should I say that I took good vacation? I’d been to many new places including a new continent! I had bad experiences with some flights and better experiences with ground transportation but the best experience was to chill with the group I traveled.

5. Pushed my comfort levels.
I am not a sucker for thrills. My biggest thrill is to go to the top of a green mountain (by road, of course) and drink coffee while looking at the clouds on the same level. I had this thrill couple of times already. So this year, I snorkeled (YAY!) and zip-lined through a rain forest. You people who did scuba diving and sky diving- please don’t mock!

6. Cooked, baked and ate all of it.
What else would a foodie like me say? I took a shot at cooking a lot of recipes from yummly and numerous cooking blogs that I follow. Some of them like lasagna bombed like crazy but hey- some like veg pizza were near to pro. Once you get a hang of cooking, it also relieves stress. This strictly applies to cooking and not cleaning the aftermath!

7.Tried new things.
I tried new color on my hair, did eye makeup all by myself and also baking.

8.Became health and weight conscious
I was always cautious about my health but this year I took it to the next level with next thing- my weight. Hoping to see results in 2016 or 2017 or 2032. Or may be sometime before I die.

source: 4.bp.blogspot.com

9. Made a stranger smile.

10. Got inspired.
This is not new to me because I’ve a new list every year. My list this year has one colleague who is our entire team combined into one and one fb friend who took up a challenge in 2015 and finished it. However in my case, this feeling generally has the lifetime of a cheese stick on my plate(approx 4 sec). I’ve decided to do better next year.

11. Read zero books.
Not that I am one person who reads everything that Crossword sells but I do read books. Especially when friends like Ro recommend. This year, I read ZERO. Discounting the book that airplanes have in their seat pouch with the safety card.

12. Sang something that I learnt when I was in high school and pulled it off.
Can this be something that I can be really proud of? Please please.

13. Netflix/Hulu and chill.
Imagine a kid who lives on dal and curd rice. Send him to a lavish buffet that has a nominal fee and spread from across the world. Not that the kid has never been to a multi cuisine restaurant before but don’t you get the point already? No torrents, HD Video and no pain of searching internet.
PS: Please note that the dal and curd rice are still my staple food. Masala is okay too as long as it is not unhealthy. Cannot eat stale food however.

OMG! I’m full of analogies today 😀

PPS: I followed “How I met your mother” back then for some time(but not for long). Now I wish Ted never met kids’ mother at all. ‘Kuch kuch hota hai‘ has a better storyline FYI.

14. Met a close friend and laughed to my heart’s content.
Kd, the fire star. Someone who has her name written in RED on (almost)every page of my college life. Cheers to 10 years of awesomeness and all that! There is one more that I haven’t met recently, but all in good time!

15. Spent quality time writing in Telugu.
I wrote several articles in Telugu (most of them are lying as drafts in my gmail). I read them every now and then and edit them hoping to publish but I honestly have no idea what I want. Everything either seems preachy or pointless. I am critical of myself.

If you’re still with me – I conclude this with a hope to have a positive 16th point next year. Here’s wishing everyone a very healthy and prosperous new year.

Yours truly, Avakaya

I know you’re smiling at the title. I also know that you’re drooling at the mention of my name. Such unconditional love makes me all emotional sometimes but I wouldn’t shed happy tears to not spoil the taste for you. Instead I will simply continue to please your senses and enjoy this bliss like a king.

Mixing of the spices with mangoes.

Mixing of the spices with mangoes.

You are the one who gave birth to me. You picked the choicest mangoes from town, cut them as diamonds and mixed them with spices in measures. Thus I was born. You gave me a new home in those tall porcelain jars and I moved in to your house. Or your kitchen to be precise. Our relationship this way has been continuing for centuries together.

Jaadi (porcelain jars) for storing pickles.

Jaadi (porcelain jars) for storing pickles.

I sometimes wonder if I can cater adequately to your spice lusts but your pleased faces and happy tummies fuel me. Best of all is that each of you love me in your own way. Let me explain how.

  • A typical grandma loves to mix me with hot rice and add ghee. She lovingly serves it to the kids leaving them clueless wondering whether the taste is because of the hand that is serving or the food in the plate.
  • A young lad loves to have me with dosa/idli/puri because I am the safest and next tastiest resort when there is no chutney at home.
  • A smart mom loves to cajole her kids into eating greens and lentils with a pinch of me on the side of the plate.
  • A lazy bachelor loves to have me with rice or maggi without having to cook other sides.
  • Believe it or not, I am also taken with pizzas and pastas sometimes thus adding the Indian touch to Italian pride. You may want to talk to the owner of this blog to find out more.

Your love for me is not limited to the four dining room walls. You proudly share it to relatives and friends and also take a taste of their handmades. You send me across seas to serve your progenies and I am proud to say that there is no NRI suitcase which doesn’t include me packed and sealed.

I sit in the plane and go whee! source: colourbox.com

Not to forget, you have given me a cult status in your gult movie by saying- “Amma, Avakay, Anjali eppudu bore kottavu. ” I cannot tell you how much it means to me. It is this admiration which keeps me going though I’m (in) a pickle!

I thus speak on behalf of all my cousins – maagaya, thokku avakaya, bellam avakaya, dosa avakaya and usiri avakaya- Thank you!

See you in your next meal.

Return of the king!

Yellow and ripe
as big as my palm,
Worth all the hype
for it’s straight from the farm.
 
Comes in hundred sorts,
each has its own smack.
Dad brings them in lots
Mom puts them up in the rack.
 
Its scent all over,
doesn’t keep me in peace.
Like a fly I hover,
to devour each piece.

From:fish-cooking.about.com

“Keep it to the last”
Mom passes an order.
I finish the rest items fast
drooling over its odor.
 
Slowly one by one
I relish the cut pieces.
Now that I won,
The feeling finally eases.
 
Good fruits are just few,
This is the return of the king.
Summer I love you,
Good bye dear spring.