Monday, January 31, 2011

A blissfull saturday

We were to avail of the free weekend offer this last weekend!!! And boy was it fun.

I was extremely extremely excited on Friday.. we were to check in on Friday night. A turned up late and we checked in at 1am. A bit of waiting outside the hotel gates.. they refused to let us go in - they were zapped with the 1am check in and us driving into the hotel!! And in my mind I was thinking ' god, this is off to a bad start'! Calmed A down and finally we were welcomed into the hotel.

We slept till 11am on Saturday morning and turned up at the hotel for brunch. The walk upto the main building is a beautiful walk. Westend is a beautiful property.

It is green and it just makes you feel happy not to mention fresh. So there are cottages away from the main building.. about 2 mins from the main unit and you feel you are out of Bangalore. The traffic sounds are totally muted. It is so peaceful and serene.

A view of the property interiors!!

After a nice leisurely lunch and short nap, I got a massage done. WOW!!!! I totally gave up to the ministrations of the masseuse.. she was GOOD!!! mmmmmmmmm... And we figured out later that the vouchers we had for the spa wouldnt work!!!! But no matter.. It was BLISS!!!

Post massage, we limbered on to Blue Ginger, their Vietnamese restaurant. Now, the restaurant is expensive!!! Very expensive!!! But we were feeling good.. relaxed after the massage.. wanting to spend.. it is a good strategy on the part of the hotel... threw caution into the wind.. and spend we did.

I loved the meal and the company!! :)

We ordered some beef.. it was mouth watering. Sunil, who was helping us out, recommended prawns in tamarind sauce and new zealand lamb rack.. both were good but sweet. Now I dont usually like too much sweet and I was saying so to A when the chef descended on to our table (A maintains it was because of faces I was making that he came).. I just couldnt bring myself to say that the food was too sweet. A jumped right in and told the chef. The chef then made some prawns in satay sauce just for me....... on the house........!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was sooooooooo embarrassed!!!!!!

We refused dessert but our guy refused to let us go and served some home made rose icecream (it had rose petals in it).. again on the house!!!!!!!!!!

And finally we asked for a filter coffee.. now Blue Ginger does not serve filter coffee but the guy got it for us from elsewhere.

We were pampered silly by them!!!! And yes we paid a lot.. but really.. how joyfull it was .. to be spoilt like that.. i just cannot explain!!! I totally loved it. And as A says.. better to have moments like these than have lots of money and think about the fun we could have had!!! Its ok.. I will regret it later.. right now I am too busy feeling happy :)

And then picked the DVD of Iron Man 2 to end the day and watched it in the room. Bad movie.. but how can Robert Downey Jr be bad!!!! He was just awesome.. so handsome.

A perfect end to a perfect day. Why cant all days be like this!!!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Dhobi Ghaat

This is going to be a quick post.. I hope :)

So we watched Dhobi Ghat on Saturday night. What surprised me was.. A booked the tickets without me even asking about it. I guess that goes to show that he too was curious about the movie! Just to give you a context - usually I pester him on booking a show - thats an initiative usually I take. So I am often surprised when it happens the other way round - last it was Terminator salvation / Avatar I think.

So anyway, I have been working late these days (yes Scarlett, what to do!!!) and have been traveling. So I hadnt actually read the review for the movie before watching. So I didnt really expect anything - not having read, heard or seen anything.

And I loved the movie. It is so refreshing. Its been a long time since I watched such a movie.

4 stories intertwined. A simple story (ies). Nothing complicated.. no shouting.. no loud music.. Kiran Rao portrays life as is..

I loved Prateik Babbar - the emotions flitting across his face are so real. You can actually see him falling in love with Shai... the initial stage where you are just friendly.. the realisation of the crush building up.. the awareness of the "other"... the sense of touch..the jubilation, the jealousy.. He is just perfect!!!!!!!!! And it is all you can do to stop yourself from giving him a hug. He is GOOD!!! he is BRILLIANT.

Shai, a New York returned character, on a "sabbatical" so to speak.. she was good too. Monica Dogra I think her name is. She was good. Her character was refreshing.. refreshing from the perspective that usually rich children in movie are always portrayed to be like snobs, b*****s of the first order. And that was so not the case here!!!! I quite liked her character and the actor!!!!!!!!!

For me the character who was outstanding was - Yasmin. Besides Prateik Babbar i.e. I was hard pressed to decide who is better. Kriti Agarwal I think who played Yasmin was brilliant. Her screen presence is limited to some shots, her voice is the only thing you can hear as she shows you around Bombay through her eyes. Despite this, despite this, she was awesome. Her presence in the movie is through her voice - and her presence in the video she shoots as a message for her brother.

You actually go through her full journey along with her- you feel her excitement as she reaches Bombay.. when she sees the sea.. and then little by little the despair creeping in her voice as the realities seep in.  She was the most beautiful of the lot.. Yasmin's story gets you!!! Pretty much as it gets Arun, aka Aamir Khan.

Now the best thing about the movie - it does not shine because of Aamir. He is good.. he is subtle in his role of the "painter". But this is not his movie .. very unlike a Ghajini OR a Lagaan...

All other characters outshine him - and that is the best thing about it. It is not 'touched or sullied' (I cant think of any other word).. not overpowered by stars. The director sticks  to the story.. the story is the hero.. the characters are the heros.

And when I watch Aamir's interviews and he says he needed to convince Kiran Rao about his playing a part in the movie - I believe him now that I have watched the movie.

The casting is brilliant.

I wouldnt mind watching it again. A 4.5 / 5 from me.

MUST MUST watch.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Step 2 to my resolve : a bit of selfishness :)

A quick post but couldn't help but share with you guys!!

We have some vouchers from this hotel through which we get a free weekend at their hotel(s) in the city!!!

And we are using it up... contrary to the last few times we had the opportunity to do so!!!!!!!!!!!! Weekend at a hotel... that too within city!!! Bliss :)

Please do keep it to yourself... (note to myself : this is a blog, you moron).. but in any case if you happen to see anyone I know.. DO NOT TELL!!! I AM NOT KIDDING.

Of course I am hoping that A doesn't read this.. he will kill me. Actually, I need not worry.. he really doesn't read my blog!!

And to top this.. we are planning a week long vacation in April. Rather I am supposed to plan it... to celebrate our 5th ANNIV!!!!!!!!!!!!! IMAGINE!!! 5 long years!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOSH!!!

But the thing is we don't have much money between us.. so thinking about options right now.. Andaman / Goa is what I thought?

Any suggestions you guys have?


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Cheapad.. Kanjre.. quintessential Delhi - Band Bajaa Baraat

First week of the new year  and 2 days of the week, I was working real late!!! Tuesday night I worked till 3am and woke up at 5.30am!

But on the bright side - the rest 3 days of the week, I have been home by 7!!

So I am assuming 2011 is going to be a mixed bag really... though I am hoping more of the latter (7pm) than the former (3am)!!


And on Tuesday, Scarlett messaged me and reminded me of my resolve - to spend more time with near and dear ones.. and to reduce my workaholic ways!

Well, it is going to take time!! But I am happy to report that I am already on that path. We had booked tickets to go to Hyderabad for Sankranti to in-laws place, the added attraction being meeting my sis and niece... this is before the 2011 holiday list was declared.. and to my dismay I found that Sankranti was not an off unlike usual. And to top it, my boss wanted me to travel along with him for an important internal presentation in Bombay.

I vacillated... it is but natural!!!!! An important presentation.. important to my career and a trip to Hyderabad to meet family... ah well!! A very very tough decision for me!! But a decision I took - to forgo the meeting and go to Hyderabad.

Am I happy - yes! But if only the meeting could get postponed!! :)  Well, a leopard cannot change spots and that too so quickly!


Watched Band Bajaa Baraat. A really really good movie. Definitely in the "Must watch" category.
I have lived for about 25 odd yrs in West Delhi... right next to "Janak Puri" .. in rajouri garden (a surd area) and then Vikas Puri (mixed culture).

And the movie transported me right back into the streets of Delhi!! Its been ages since I heard the words "cheapad" and "kanjre"!!!  Cheapad, pronounced as it is written, used to be one of the "it" words when I was in school - a term used between friends affectionately!! And "kanjre" the bad word, choti aunty (thats how we referred to that aunty) used when screaming at her surd boys!!!!

A very very refreshing movie.. very progressive.. but then punjus are progressive as a race, whatever you may say about them. And the movie captures this beautifully.

I also liked the love making angle to the story - the director doesn't shy away from reality... he shows is as is!! I mean to say there is no post s*x guilt trips or any moral of the story funda and you should not indulge in such acts before marriage that happen in the movie.

I quite liked both the actors - Anushka Sharma, the street smart delhi girl (believe me, to get that you need to live in Delhi) and the newbie Ranveer Singh (the biness guy). They fit in right into the dhingchak west delhi culture!! Delhi thrives on the sir ji culture... sir ji, uncle ji, aunti ji, bhaisaheb, bhaiya (in Delhi everyone is a bhaiya or an uncle, no exceptions. I remember we went to footwear store and the sales guy refused to show us sandals till we stopped calling him Bhaiya.. oh well!!)......... All of us have done that "uncle jis and aunty jis a gazillion times!!!

How much I miss the city is not funny!! The history.. monuments at every corner.. the wide roads.. the people.. everything!!!

One more movie  that I will watch everytime its aired (the first one being Khosla ka Ghosla)

It is a 4 on 5 for sure for Band Bajaa Baraat!!! Worth going a second time.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A post for the new year

Happy new year all of you!!

You do know what they say - Whatever you do on the 1st of the year.. thats what you end up doing most of the year!!  I try to do nice things on 1st Jan every year.. even though the year(s) never turn out to be as fun!

If I think of the year gone past - while we had a barbeque party on 31st night going right into 1st Jan, I hardly partied last year.. rather I was barbequed (!!!) royally through the year.. the first 6 months the most painful!!

Even then, I would still like to believe in it.... It is a nice thing to believe in too!!! So I like cramming the day with things that I like - in the hope I spend time doing what I like through the year.

So what have I been doing or plan to do today?

a) Last night I read a book untill 12. Thats how I welcomed the year!!
b) Fell into deep sleep  waking up only at 10am!
c) Went out for a long long lunch - 2-5pm. I tried everything on the buffet.. well almost everything, I really could not bring myself to try oysters or octopus. A was game enough to try oysters and he had about 4-5 of those!! I tried all the dishes though - MC australia in the back of my mind :) Pic of remains of the dessert  below. One of things below is profiteroles (so what if I had to google the spelling) - I picked it up purely because of MC australia!!!!!

d) Wanted to catch a movie in the theatre desperately. But did not happen as some friend turned up. Damn.. Should have gone to the theatre today!!
e) Wanted to and I am putting in a post so that I post through the year!!
f) Sleep  a lot
g) Spend time with my husband
h) Speak to family on either side and close friends!!
i) Listen to good music
j) Watch nice romantic movies
k) Not work at all :p
l) Probably buy books (though right now it seems difficult to fit into the evening)

Yup, thats about it. My ultra small list :))