16

The 5th!

It is my blog baby’s 5th birthday, and I cant believe that it has been so long! So thankful to all of you for the motivation, inspiration and appreciation! While I go and sniffle out of emotions and to clear out a cold, I am leaving here 5 principles that I try to live by. I am going to call them ‘5 elements of PB.’

1. Worship your body: The old adage the health is wealth still holds extremely true. Walk, run, swim, bike, do whatever makes you happy and makes you sweat. I have convinced myself not to give up at the first sign of weakness. I do this at least 3 times a week coupled with free weights for an hour minimum and I hope I will have less problems to deal with as I get older. Although, I cant deny the fact that vanity is a huge motivating factor. Keep moving!

2. Eat food: What is life without food? I start thinking of dinners as soon as I get to work at 7.30 am. And, I keep moving, so I can keep eating. I stick to one healthy meal a day of salad or a smoothie, and a nice hot and light dinner. This lets me hog whatever I want over weekends when I go out or make elaborate meals at home.

3. Pet every dog possible: It is my mission in life to tell every dog that he is a good boy and she is a good girl. They need that closure to the life long question “Now who’s a good boy?!”

4. Be nice: This comes from a very negative aspect of my personality where I have anger management issues. I struggle with anger, resentment, and inability to forget. So, I try to be nice to make up for that. I try my best to be kind to animals and work for them. I try to be nice to people irrespective of how they have treated me, and I try to do bits for people in need who will never meet me. I am trying to be less hurtful and channel my anger properly. But I do say sorry very quickly!

5. Don’t worry about people who wont worry for you: I am quite close to attainment of moksha because finally I have brought this into practice. I am not going to bother myself by thinking about people who don’t make me happy. Life is too short to get bogged down by someone who makes you feel inferior and to force relationships on people who clearly make you feel unwanted. Move on, move out.

See you all next year!
(Just kidding, see you whenever I write the next post.)

17

Travelogue : Tips to achieve inflight zen

Have you seen the movie Non-Stop? It has Liam Neeson in it doing what he does best, that is to look all serious and broody and conflicted. Trust me guys, I would never get into a flight with that guy, he is simply bad luck, with that serious face. The other reason why the movie bothered me so much is because of a scene where he fights with one of the accused villains in the ECONOMY CLASS and during the fight, the villain falls down between the seat in the next rows. and guess what? HE DISAPPEARS! How did a guy manage to disappear in the cattle class where it is difficult to even cross and uncross your legs. Try dropping something between the seats and trying to pick that up. I would rather dip my hand in that hot(lukewarm) cup of coffee that they serve in-flight.
The point is, flights are uncomfortable, messy and leave you with the sensation of having been digested in a whale’s stomach. I have taken a lot of long distance flights, with my longest flight ever being 18 hours from New York City to Mumbai, India, as well as domestic flights from East Coast to West Coast. I have learned to deal with the in-flight discomfort with some of my travel tricks. Many of these tricks are common to roadtrips too that I take many times. It becomes equally irritating in cars, specially when you are with company in the back seats and cannot lie down and promptly doze off. Sharing with you some tidbits that may help you stay calm and not kill the person next to you hogging your armrest.

  • Neck pillow: I had been putting off buying this for the longest time because I always thought of better things to do with $20. But on my last flight to India, I had to take a redeye to NYC, endure a 5 hour layover and then to Abu Dhabi before I could step foot at homeland. I got so uncomfortable on my first flight that as soon as I got to JFK, I bought one, and promptly went off to sleep on a small couch that I found near my gate. It is a savior, you guys!
  • Moisturizer, lip balm, small hairbrush: I am obsessed with lip balms thanks to sometimes single digit humidity in Southern California. My lips and palms are somehow always parched and it simply gets worse in flights with the controlled air. I always keep a small tube of moisturizer and lipbalm to hydrate my skin. A flight is far more comfortable if your lips don’t feel like Sahara dessert. The only reason I carry a hairbrush is to not scare the poor immigration officer and the person who volunteers to pick me up at airports. Long hair don’t take much time to look like a bird’s nest. This is also where those samples from Sephora, Ulta and magazines come in handy.
  • A book/Kindle: Time flies(literally) when you have a trusty book with you. My Kindle is one thing I never ever forget on a journey. I have more affection for a nice paperback or hardcover, but an eReader makes life easier when space and weight is a constraint. The seemingly immortal battery life is a definite plus when your phone fails to make the cute(looking at you iPhone!)
  • Sugar candy and baby food pouches: Now this is one strange tip that I picked up after having a couple of flights where I got really hangry. I buy a few of those fruit puree baby food pouches because they take minimal space and make a tasty vegetarian/vegan snack in a crunch. The hard-boiled sugar candies are good to suck on during takeoff and landings because they stimulate the salivary gland and prevent your ears from that painful popping. They are also useful if you are around a crying kid. Win-win for both. Do ask the parents first.
  • Socks: It would be rather nice to just wear flipflops for a flight, but I get very cold easily and for some reason angry when I am cold. I have to wear a pair of cozy socks and Toms so that I am comfy and warm. Many international flights do give socks in their flight kits though.
  • Oversized hoodie: Like I mentioned earlier, I get cold easily and the flight blanket covers either my neck or my toes. So to avoid losing my temper at the poor blanket, I just like to wear a hoodie that will cover my ears and neck snugly while the blanket keeps my legs and toes toasty.
  • Phone charger, headphones: It is always nice to carry your own headphones in case they work with the in-flight entertainment system. You can even listen to your own music and watch videos on the phone. I always have the phone charging cable, and a portable charging bank because I don’t trust my phone to last the whole time. It also helps to carry a long 10 ft charger cable if you have long layovers. Throw in a multiple USB charger if you are looking for blessings from people trying to find empty sockets.
  • A small bag: If you have a carryon and a personal item, I try to carry just a small drawstring bag or a sling bag. my bag usually fits all the items mentioned above snugly and it takes up minimum space under the seat. With the baby sized legspace that airlines give you, the last thing you want is a backpack taking up that area. Sometimes I carry this drawstring bag inside a backpack(that has even more stuff) that I put in the luggage bin, so that I have my essentials on me and rest of the stuff overhead. 

This list should help you travel more comfortably I hope and will keep you calm and stress-free. Let me know if you have anything to add here. Anything to make me not feel like Hulk in my next flight, is greatly appreciated. Meanwhile, go on tripping.com to check out some great deals on vacation rentals and start planning your next trip. I am already thinking about Florida this year and I see they have amazing beach rentals. Go ahead, get hold of a cute bungalow, book that flight and start packing your bags!

Happy travels!

15

I don’t need enemies…

…When I have myself!

I am not exaggerating, you guys. I am right on track to destroy my social life, alienate friends and to kill any chance of finding a life partner or even starting a relationship.

I met up with friends over the last weekend and I was telling her how I am so lazy that I just don’t want to step out of my home anymore. I had a date lined up since a few weeks but I have been postponing it for one or the other reason. Although the first week I had stomach cramps and had to cancel another dinner plan. But after that, I have had no reason. I left the town to go to San Diego on Saturday morning and my Friday was wide open and plan-less! But rather than going and meeting this guy, I decided that being on the couch and watching TV is a better option. I may have just lost the love of my life(Rrriiggghhtt!) I had a date planned a few months back too. But the phone call to plan it kind of cooled it for me. He made atleast 10 mentions of some club that used to be in the vicinity of the brewery I was suggesting and sounded concerned that in all my years of living here versus his 2, I hadn’t preferred to spend my every waking moment there. So, when he texted 3 hours before the date that his friend ‘had a fracture suddenly’, I was more than happy at his sad excuse. I went to tell my girl Adriane that I don’t have the date anymore and she commented that I was positively glowing at the prospect of not having anything to do that Friday. 

These aren’t really one off incidences. I already am famous for refusing to do absolutely anything on weekdays, save for Wednesday softballs. I spend my day at work, work out in the evening, and I want to go back home and do nothing but watch ‘Kuch Rang Pyar Ke Aise Bhi’(obsessed with the show!). My plum sized brain refuses to understand that I will have zero Rang Pyar Ke if I don’t step out, meet people, and invest energy to get something started. Even when I start talking to people online through Anuroop, I only want to text. I cant help feel exhausted already when they suggest a phonecall. My weekends are spent in pre-decided plans with friends, or trying to not get out my bed to even see sunlight. Where does that leave me any time to devote to guys? 

This is not good for me. Since I first started dating at around 17-18, this is the longest that I have been single. I have become used to being alone, although I don’t like being lonely. I have become accustomed to doing things my way and spending my time the way I want to. My last relationship also happened to be the longest relationship I have had and so I have lost touch with my dating mindsight. I have not had to try and be nice, and impress anyone for years now(6 years today actually.) Things just flowed when the xBF and I decided to take our friendship to the next level. All this business of talking and connecting with people, has totally left my comfort zone. I can talk without worry with anyone where there is no prospect or suggestion of anything else. Anything other than that makes me clam up. It also doesn’t help that I am feeling quite under-confident about myself, with respect to looks, and even more, personality. I just don’t feel that I have that ‘stuff’ in me anymore that can be liked by someone, so, why even try! I know, I know, that is the wrong way to go about, specially when I am so keen on ending this lonliness. But old habits die hard, eh?

I guess I just have to keep telling myself to get out of the house right? Although, all this hardwork, effort and the subsequent ranting in this space can be saved if one simply falls in love with me at first sight. Is that too much to ask for?

—————

PS : Usually on social media and blogs, people color their lives to make them look more exciting and better than reality. I have succeeded in doing the opposite. To all the concerned people, my life isn’t as sad as it looks from the post. Take it with a pinch of salt, and some lime and tequila.