Wednesday, June 27, 2018

For Tony

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8 JUNE 2018

4.57 PM: It's Friday, and I am looking at my to-do list and hoping the day gets done soon. That I get to go home and enjoy the start of another weekend. One of the WhatsApp groups buzzed.

"Anthony Bourdain is dead. Shite."

I was the first to reply.

"NO".

"WHAT?"

And then I started to Google with a strange mix of anxiety and sadness. Say it wasn't true.

Bourdain was gone. 61 years young. It was surreal. 


I pinged D but knew he would be asleep as he was working the night shift. Gawd, D will be devastated to wake up to this news. My mind was racing. Bourdain would feature in our conversations often over the years and I didn't know anyone who was a bigger fan of the chef-turned-storyteller. Still can’t believe it.

People were shocked but I was in another zone. My hands had turned cold and my brain was blank. What the hell had just happened? That it was by suicide was equally perplexing. And very very very heartbreaking. 

Here are some random conversations (with typos et al) with D and L which mentioned Bourdain and our love for him.


25 SEPTEMBER 2014


j: My life toh is upside down here. No orientation of time or day. Plus my parents arrived on Tuesday morning.... just like that. No notice. Nothing. Surprise, it seems. But I was actually relieved to see them.

d: oh nice. Ull get nice food

j: SIL's birthday today 
Kori roti and chicken curry 
And pork 
Yummy

d: wow

j: Yeah
But I reached after everyone finished dinner and were singing Happy Birthday
Sigh
Life

d: thats ok as long as u got the food

j: Lol

d: im eating rubbish here

j: At least I reached earlier than my own birthday

d: craving for a nice plate of food and im watching masterchef so that makes things worse

d: what is the last episode on star world ?

j: Sheesh I haven't watched since two days
Last one was the team challenge
Red vs Blue after Laura's immunity challenge

d: what was the challenge ?

j: Some restaurant challenge under Marco Pierre White
I saw only the end

d: ahhhhh Marco week I loved Marco week !!!!
I love him

j: You should marry him LOL
Yeah, I like him too

d: no 
My first love is Bourdain

j: That we all know :P

d: hahaha. You do ?

j: Yeah 
You keep tweeting about him

d: hahha :) parts unknown new season stars next week first stop : China :)

    

12 JULY 2014

d: seriously think i am in the wrong line of work
i want anthony bourdain's job

j: Hmmm You just need to be disciplined about the blogging/writing

d: i write horribly no grammar no spell check nothing lol
but i like to eat

j: Then create a YouTube show Don't write
I would love to be on the road...and eat and travel.
But I don't think I am disciplined enough People have told me to take up writing more seriously... but zero dedication I have


6 SEPTEMBER 2011

l: btw u know what i cooked for easter this year?
prawn biryani, pimento styled egss, tongue, mutton chops fried and of course salad

j: Woahhhhhhhhh
All by yourself? And you eat tongue?

l: yup

j: I have never had tongue

l: i had an off so i cooked :) my fav

j: I've heard of tongue sandwiches

l: actuallty mom had sent the tongue so i can't take credit for it but i did heat it... everything else i prepared from scratch

j: Imagine if a vegetarian was reading this conversation... how grossed how s/he would be reading "tongue" as food
I'd like to try it some day

l: hahaha i know
and to think we eat ox tail, and goat feet

j: That's one of the few reasons I'm glad to be born a Catlick :P

l: i don't eat brain, lover, heart and pig feet hahahaha

j: I've had pig's intestines As in... cooked like a sorpotel

l: urrghhhhhhhh

j: But differnt

l: not my thing
are u sure it was pig and not cow's

j: It doesn't look like intestines

l: i've heard of cow's intestine

j: And is cut into tiny pieces And cleaned very well

l: i know... imagine

j: My uncle is an expert in it

l: btw the tongue is sliced up so u don't really know

j: Called "rakhti" because it involves cooking with pig's blood

l: i see

j: But when it's made her now... we don't add blood

l: my aunt puts pig's blood in sorpotel

j: Anthony Bourdain would like us very much :P



Screengrab courtesy: explorepartsunknown.com

Yes, Tony... what we'd have given to have met you even once! You inspired us to look at and beyond food in our personal journeys. You opened our minds and hearts to a world that wasn't always Instagram-worthy, yet it was meaningful and far more interesting. We lived and learned and loved the world through your eyes. Thank you for the stories. I am sure you're rocking the heavens too!

Till we meet again,
~j~ 


Monday, February 12, 2018

Going mobile

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Not sure how I never thought of this earlier, but hey... Blogger has an app and I'm writing this from there. Perhaps this is the push I need to write often.

Testing this now, and also adding a photo from my phone to check how this will pan out.

Have a nice day, wherever you are.

~j~

Sunday, December 31, 2017

From me to me...

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It's less than two hours to a brand new year. 2018! Gosh, isn't that something? Why did I decide to sit in front of a laptop and type this? I don't know. And no, I didn't even have some major breakthrough to talk about either. 

Has it been a great year? Ummm... in bits and pieces. Like most of my recent years. What defines a "great year" anyway? 365 days of being happy? Can anyone ever claim to be happy or fulfilled every day of the year? Okay, I'm rambling now.

Before I sign out, here are some highlights of 2017:
- I grew up. Yes, I lived alone for the most part and I learned what 'adulting' really was. I have lived alone for a while now, but this year was really the test. During 2015-16, there was a lot going on. I travelled to a few countries on work and also for holidays in 2015 and the next year, the family was down as my niece was born here and that was the major focus for everyone at home. And then September 2016, the family vanished. Brother took sis-in-law and niece abroad where he is on a work assignment, and parents returned to Mangalore which is where they've been based for a few years now. So yeah, I am responsible for day-to-day living and managing of expenses. It's bloody hard, but I think I've finally come around to it. 

- As part of the adulting process, I - along with help from my family - finally invested in property. That was probably the most stressful part of the year with the running around for the paperwork and getting my savings out. Even though the EMIs have already kicked in, it hasn't hit me yet. I still need to put down my thoughts on this. Hopefully, I will.

- I ditched artificial jewellery. You might think this is weird, but I've always loved jewellery - just not the kind made of gold or precious stones. I had invested a little in one of those Tanishq schemes and at the end of the period, could use the amount + a little extra to buy their products. So, I ended up buying a few things - some for me and some for the family. A pair of small diamond earrings (my first diamonds) are now sorta permanent and I wear a really thin chain with a small pendant. It's not about the money that got spent or what these are. As I grow older, I find myself being drawn to classic styles that don't need much work. I am not a fashion person, nor am I huge on 'dressing up', so these ornaments are apt and serve as 'staples' that are super low maintenance. 

- I rediscovered music. Yes, it was via a certain Mr John Mayer. And yes, my friends have hated this the most about me this year. But let me clarify something - I've ALWAYS LOVED his music. Don't believe me? Check my Blogger profile. Mayer is listed there with a bunch of others and I wrote this silly bio years ago. Honestly, I had even forgotten about it. It may sound stupid considering how old I am but JM's music *found* me around January-February when I was going through a terribly low phase. To counter whatever was going on, I started researching anything and everything about him. The years I had missed. And those seemed like many, many years. Imagine I had lost touch since 2009. And when I look back at my own timeline, I see why and how I was disconnected from music. Today, he is my absolute favourite for a number of reasons. I won't delve into those. His talent and life's story have been my rock in 2017 and just for that - THANK YOU, JOHN. (Now, just help me tick off a bucket list item soon!)

By the way, I also bought a JBL Flip 3 Bluetooth speaker this year and listening to John Mayer, internet radio, YouTube stuff, and the odd podcasts through it has been simply kickass. It's my companion when the house gets too quiet.

- I attended the Ed Sheeran concert. Was fun! 


Despite the fact I could barely see a thing, I enjoyed the music. 


- I returned to Postcrossing after a long break from it. It's a slow process for now and supposed to be that way. I've promised myself to not write more than 1-2 postcards at a time. That way, I can take my time and not get too "busy" for it. Gotta write a couple tonight. Yes, it's a great habit/hobby to have. 

- Work wasn't a highlight as such, but my team was/is. I was fortunate to find a bunch of good, talented kids who've been supportive and fun to work with. There have been some trying times, but the good outweighed the bad by a great deal. I got severely sick around July-end when we kicked off a new project and was unable to get out of bed for two days. The team was still fairly new, but they told me to stay put and not come to office till I was okay. That really lifted my spirits and has kept us all in good stead over the months. I hope I was a good boss to them and hope I can get better in the year ahead.

This is it for now. I might have more to say, but (a) I can't recall everything right now, and (b) I have to rush for midnight Mass. Yes, that's how I'm starting my year. 

I don't know if anyone still reads my posts. They are hardly noteworthy now, but if you are reading this, THANK YOU. And I wish you a year full of happiness and bright possibilities. May all your dreams come true! 

Love,
~j~

PS: This post isn't going to be edited (like I do with everything I write). I need to really let my writing be more carefree and not sanitised. No? The stupid "editor" in me is forced to check grammar, spellings, punctuation and whatnot. Maybe this year, less of that on the blog at least. :)

Thursday, May 04, 2017

A fine line

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There's a fine line between joking with someone and targetted harassment. Never forget that. 

~j~

Monday, May 01, 2017

Things to do when a wave of sadness hits you...

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Take a chill pill and maybe some of these too! (Image Source: Unknown; Don't sue me!)

In no particular order:



# Listen to some upbeat music and sing your favourite lyrics out loud.

# Or just DANCE - even if you have two left feet like mine. Here's my current jam:


# Think of parents, family, friends, just about anyone who loves you - pretty much unconditionally.

# Read old, funny IM conversations you've had with your favourite people. Like the ones I have with Lo and DC... So much entertainment! (Thank God for search functionality within chat apps)

# Check out the Instagram 'Explore' tab and discover interesting people and their feeds. Some of the super accounts I follow: mumbaipaused, marsder, petesouza. Go, check them out NOW.

# Dream of Japan. (Insert your own dream destination.)
Somewhere along the Hanshin Expressway, Kobe - Japan | December 2015
# Count your blessings. Be grateful. EVERY DAY.

# Pray. Without an agenda. 

That's all I can think of for now. It's well past 4 AM at the moment. Signing off with this uplifting (?) thought that I found in some forgotten folder of my laptop...
Image Source: Unknown. Sorry!
Peace/XO,
~j~ 


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