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Bookish

So I live to read and eat... in that order! A lot of you have been asking me to make book recommendations (which I take very seriously - I’m one of those... I don’t lend books and like having my shelf as full and messy as possible) These are my recommendations across all genres with my little insights, which I hope you like (or pretend to - come on, just pretend already!)

Okay, lets go-

So 10 books - a few genres... a good start? Also thinking about starting a book club for fun. Should I? Come on, be nice now! I’m writing this on a Sunday and I don’t usually move on Sundays. Now do I get a brownie point? Seriously though...book club? Yes, No, Maybe?


Over due rant on the over emphasis on ‘breaking the glass ceiling’

So I’m a 20-something Indian woman. Forgive me for being old-school, but I still believe it’s rude to probe into a lady’s age or a man’s salary — it’s unbecoming. As most things old are considered gold, these two ‘golden rules’ have been ruled out for a ‘golden duck’, which begs the question ‘why?’
In our hopeless race for rebellion, these two questions arise the most. Believe me… I know. 
As a 20 something woman (No, still not ready to let out my age), I relentlessly get asked ‘how old are you, shouldn’t you be married?’ or my less fortunate male counterparts who get questions about their bank balance, because you know… the number of zeros there signifies their dominance in the modern world. Pressure, pressure all around….
But why can’t we maybe reverse these questions?
Ask me how much I make…i’ll be happy to talk about it; about my goals and ambitions, my dreams and values. Why don’t we consider asking a man how old he is, just so he knows that life is long, and there’s lots left to experience and achieve? 
The glass ceiling is what we’ve created, ourselves. Equal pay, women’s rights, feminism, fight against rape, fight against sexism, racism, gay rights, gay pride, LGBT movement — it’s exhausting to even type the coterie of problems everyone, everywhere is dealing with.

Relentlessly. Fiercely. Absolutely.

I’m not an idealist, activist or a feminist. I’m a 26 year old woman who’s trying to engender change through perspective. Ever so often, I’ve come across women who tear other women apart — with their words, their actions, their intent. I’ve done it too — indulged in gossip, laughed at the expense of those who I couldn’t understand. But to be honest, I didn’t care until I was misunderstood myself.

Think about it —why is it okay for a man to be eligible at 30, but a woman at 30 considered to have missed the boat? Or a man who’s been with multiple women okay-ed, but a woman with similar morals…a slut? Oh don’t be alarmed — we’ve all used the word and judged. But how limiting is that thought? What about the bigger things in life? How kind you are? How much value you add to the world? 
Where are the women?
Why aren’t we running like wildfire towards our goals? Why do our dreams have to become the casualty of running a family? Why can’t we have both?

Everyday that I work that extra hour or sign on a new client, I promise myself that I’ll do more to change the fact that it will take 200 years for men and women to have Equal Pay in the world.

And any change starts with a thought, a shift; an idea. 
& today it’s this — LET US JUST BE.


On Self-Love.

So I’m a 20-something Indian woman. Forgive me for being old-school, but I still believe it’s rude to probe into a lady’s age or a man’s salary — it’s unbecoming. As most things old are considered gold, these two ‘golden rules’ have been ruled out for a ‘golden duck’, which begs the question ‘why?’
In our hopeless race for rebellion, these two questions arise the most. Believe me… I know. 
As a 20 something woman (No, still not ready to let out my age), I relentlessly get asked ‘how old are you, shouldn’t you be married?’ or my less fortunate male counterparts who get questions about their bank balance, because you know… the number of zeros there signifies their dominance in the modern world. Pressure, pressure all around….
But why can’t we maybe reverse these questions?
Ask me how much I make…i’ll be happy to talk about it; about my goals and ambitions, my dreams and values. Why don’t we consider asking a man how old he is, just so he knows that life is long, and there’s lots left to experience and achieve? 
The glass ceiling is what we’ve created, ourselves. Equal pay, women’s rights, feminism, fight against rape, fight against sexism, racism, gay rights, gay pride, LGBT movement — it’s exhausting to even type the coterie of problems everyone, everywhere is dealing with.

Relentlessly. Fiercely. Absolutely.

I’m not an idealist, activist or a feminist. I’m a 26 year old woman who’s trying to engender change through perspective. Ever so often, I’ve come across women who tear other women apart — with their words, their actions, their intent. I’ve done it too — indulged in gossip, laughed at the expense of those who I couldn’t understand. But to be honest, I didn’t care until I was misunderstood myself.

Think about it —why is it okay for a man to be eligible at 30, but a woman at 30 considered to have missed the boat? Or a man who’s been with multiple women okay-ed, but a woman with similar morals…a slut? Oh don’t be alarmed — we’ve all used the word and judged. But how limiting is that thought? What about the bigger things in life? How kind you are? How much value you add to the world? 
Where are the women?
Why aren’t we running like wildfire towards our goals? Why do our dreams have to become the casualty of running a family? Why can’t we have both?

Everyday that I work that extra hour or sign on a new client, I promise myself that I’ll do more to change the fact that it will take 200 years for men and women to have Equal Pay in the world.

And any change starts with a thought, a shift; an idea. 
& today it’s this — LET US JUST BE.


Free-Floating

Honestly, I’m a fairly dependent person. I’m dependent on my routine, my family, my friends…even on work to keep me stimulated. So to break free from something like that has been well…different.

For one, when you travel and especially travel with people from all walks of life, the biggest thing you realise is that your problems, aren’t really so big after all.

I met a girl called Kayla, who at 23 is backpacking all over Europe since the past 3 months. No, I’m not saying ‘backpacking’ to sound cool — she literally has 1 backpack with 3 pairs of clothes, 2 pairs of shoes, a few toiletries and a bathing suit! I felt pretty damn stupid when I lugged down a filled-to-the-brim 25 KG suitcase! Really puts an interesting spin on needs vs want — I honestly wish I could be more like her — she’s so fiercely independent at 23, with not a care in the world. She wasn’t even a little bit paranoid that 2 days before our boat docked, she didn’t have her tickets to Switzerland booked — she said, oh I’ll figure my way out in time!

Lessons to be learnt — less is always more & more often than not, if you wing it — things work out, so don’t stress the small stuff!

I honestly had so much to learn from being in a group of people I hadn’t met before. It’s refreshing— it makes you think about the things you fret about because another group has a different set of ideals. The best part about the whole thing? NO JUDGEMENTS. Everyone was whoever they wanted to be — young, wild, free & even though we hadn’t ever met before and may probably never meet again — everyone looked out for the people on their boats.

Isn’t that what the human experience is about? As we’re floating through life, looking after those around us, even if it’s for a while and extending that love and compassion, expecting nothing in return?

Ask the guy who was helped by his fellow boat-ies when he was drunk off his face, halfway floating in the Adriatic!

More on Croatia recommendations, the boating experience and SOULo musings in the next one!


Not Kangana!

20 hours, 3 flights (the last one was a toy place, I swear), and 1 book later — I made it! I landed in Split, Croatia at like 4 pm — so I had a bit of time to actually go out and see the place — it’s beautiful!

Not going to lie, it was a bit strange to go upto the reception and check in by myself into a room meant for 3! But don’t worry, it was not a Kangana Ranaut situation in Queen where I had to lug my own bag up the stairs — they have elevators!

But yes, the room is big and it was quiet when I first entered — it hit me then, that I’m really doing this solo! So I called my best friend Anuja, chatted with her for a bit and then decided to not order room service — I put on some make up and went out to get a bite. I also met someone from Bombay here — it’s so funny how the Universe works things out — I felt a little uneasy, and an acquaintance from Bombay messaged me on Instagram saying he’s in Split too!

So grabbed dinner and Sheesha — it was freezing btw, and got back to my room.

Slept with (only) one light on — Level 2 unlocked!

Now heading to the boat to meet with the Contiki Crew — can’t wait to be in the Adriatic!

 

Soulo Salsa

So every time I’ve used the word ‘solo travel’ I’ve received mixed reactions. From my dad saying, ‘absolutely not’ to my friends saying ‘that’s so cool’ or ‘we wouldn’t be able to do it’.

I don’t know where the seed was planted, or how this trip has finally materialised, but I do know that I’m nervous…excited nervous…good nervous.

It’s something I’ve been meaning to do for a while now, but timing is everything and I feel like I didn’t make this trip earlier, only because I needed this experience now. Earlier, the idea of spending so much time by myself gave me anxiety, but honestly now…I’m kind of looking forward to the company.

I’m doing 8 days with Contiki in Croatia — I’m eager to meet the group that I’ve been interacting with since the past few days. They’re people I’ve never met, but are probably in a similar life phase as me?

Then I’m doing 2 weeks of unplanned travel in Europe. By unplanned I mean, I land in Barcelona and then…let’s see? Only the last leg of my trip is planned in Amsterdam with my best friend Divya, who I religiously trouble every summer. More on her later.

Basically, I’m winging it all…except my eyeliner because I’m trying to ‘back pack’ as much as possible. So for the first time in years, I’m leaving behind my Anastasia Contour Kit and replacing it with aloe vera. LOL.

Sorry for the digress — but basically this is it. I want to rent out a cute apartment and really ‘live’ in a place that’s not Bombay. I’m excited to buy Tesco, come home to a cozy flat and enjoy greasy Chinese and cheap wine…by myself. I know it sounds like a ‘non- plan’ but with time I’ve learnt, a ‘non-plan’ is a plan and a great one!

I’m unsure how everything will turn out, how I’ll spend so much time with myself or what it’s going to be like to immerse myself in different cultures but I’m ready to ride SOULo. I’ve carried a couple of books I’m really excited to read, a GoPro to document and create (most excited for this) and my laptop to try and blog. I don’t want to be too type A about it tho — let’s see. Maybe I’ll blog.

Time to go, see you on the other side!