13

Lessons from a tomato…

Some of my friends may know that since last year, I got involved with house plants and growing some vegetables after I started renting my own apartment with a nice patio.. I started off with tomatoes, cucumbers, mint and jalapeno. I went through a bunch of cilantro, pole beans, spinach and carom seeds(ajwain) too during fall and spring and have some more tomato, bell pepper, basil in inclusion with last year’s stock. Most of this enthusiasm was from reading gardening articles, friends and this episode of Chef’s Table on Netflix about a Buddhist Monk growing all her produce and creating beautiful dining experiences combined with spirituality. She let her plants grow and did nothing about pests considering them to be natural forces of nature.

The cucumber’s gone though. It got powdery mildew right after the first fruit. It still braved on and gave me atleast 10 cucumbers before I decided to let it die. I tried milk, neem, and a bunch of DIY and store bought medicines, but nothing really seemed to help. The mint is trimmed off every now and then, but the leaves are getting smaller and more hole-ridden despite constant neem oil or insecticide sprayings. The tomatoes last year were good, but many had to be discarded because of pesky greenworms boring through fruits or spots because of temperature and moisture changes. Jalapeno is going strong. It keeps looking like it will die and then it springs back with 8-10 flowers and fruits suddenly. Same goes for the bell pepper, and that has hole ridden leaves too. The insects are everywhere and there is no escaping. I have still tried to stay on the organic path with all my insecticides being natural and not harmful to the bees. The temperatures are not helping either with fluctuations between 70F to 100F in a matter of few hours.

Yesterday, I noticed that one of my tomatoes had ripened nicely with a bright red color and I decided to pluck it off. When I harvested it, I noticed that it wasn’t as nice as it looked.


I had a new perspective dawn upon me. The humble farmers have to face way more issues than being given credit for. Because I went through the actual ratio of fruit eaten to fruit harvested, and the lifecycle of my plants, I understand a miniscule part of the horrors faced by them. The plants and the crops are their livelihood. Each fruit is important. They have to fight the forces of nature which include heat, cold, rain and shine. Just a change in couple of degrees turns a ripening round tomato into an oddly lobe-shaped fruit. A small difference in moisture content of the soil will introduce the unsightly black spot on the fruit which will lead to discards. Too much rain or too little rain can wreck havoc in the life of a farmer. Same goes for too little or too much crop. A bountiful crop will drive the prices low with a nullifying effect on the profit. Back to square one.

We complain so much about pesticides and the higher costs of organic fruits which use natural herbicides and fertilizers. But I saw the other side where they have to resort to heavy sprayings to prevent pests from literally eating up their money. There is practically no winning.

It is a thankless task to work on farms. They have to fight against nature, flora and fauna to bring food to your table, all the while toiling for almost nothing.

So what am I doing with my tomato? I am cutting that quarter off and gobbling down the rest if there is no sign of a pest inside. I have worked hard(sort of!) to grow it and I am not wasting it. The quarter goes back in the pot to decompose and fertilize. I have done the same for my mint leaves. If there is no sign of pest remnants like eggs or droppings except holes in the leaves, they just get washed nicely and I make my chutney/sauces. The next time you go eww about a couple of black spots on bananas or a soft spot on a tomato, before discarding it, think of that one person who bent his/her back under the afternoon sun to tend to it. Maybe now you have a new perspective on the words ‘Farm to Table’.

7

A tail of sensory delights…

It would have been Moony’s 17th birthday. It has been 2 years since he has passed on and has been gamboling at the rainbow bridge in a pile of chicken, boiled eggs and sukhi bhel(an Indian snack that he would relish with mom every evening). But the chasm that Moony has left behind  will not be filled easily. I would like a furry sister or brother to come into our lives, but as of now we aren’t ready. A gazillion amazing things have been spoken about how amazing dogs are and how they enrich our lives and every bit is 110% true. But while driving, and reminiscing about my days with Moony, I thought of how he regaled every sense of mine. I thought of how dogs excite, amuse, confuse and delight every human sense. Every pet owner will be able to relate to this, I am sure!
1. Sight : If you haven’t felt a warm gush in your heart at the sight of a dog’s big brown eyes and sloppy, drooly smile, you, my friend, are made of stone. They bring such happiness by just existing in front of your eyes. Have you noticed how warm a dog’s big beautiful eyes are when they are looking at you with all the love their little bodies could hold and quivering from head to tip of the tail for a hug? Have you seen how naughty those same eyes look when your dog has spotted a squirrel and sensed a slack in the leash? I feel giddy just remembering how happy the sight of my dog’s fan-like wagging tail would make me after a long day. The blackberry eyes, the giant smile, that big tummy!
2. Touch : Trust me when I say that no fabric in the world is softer than a new puppy’s pink tummy. No velvet is smoother than running your fingers over a dog’s floppy ears. I used to love patting my dogs legs, right between his thigh and his tummy and even keep my palm there to take in all his warmth. Absolutely nothing beats pulling your dog close to your body like a giant teddy bear at night and just nuzzling into his fur, not even a better half! I miss running my fingers over his temples, on his cheeks, tummy, just about everywhere. His big doggy hug would end every stress and worry right there and soothe me. The softness and the warmth was unbeatable.
3. Smell : Dear dog owners, please tell me that I am not the only weirdo who totally loves the odd smell of a dog’s paws! Moony’s feet used to have this funny smell of corn chips mixed with old cooked rice, I have no idea why! He would invariably push his paws on my face when deep in sleep. I would still hold him close and take in that part atrocious, part mesmerizing scent. Aah, how can I forget the stink of his ears when we would clean them. Even his mouth smelled like a fishbowl for some odd reason. Such a jumble of weird smells they are, but so lovable!
4. Taste : If you are living with a dog, and haven’t casually ingested enough of it’s hair to have a hairball in your stomach by now, you are doing it wrong. The hair finds its way into your stomach however hard you try. After picking it off everything, I learnt to just roll with it. It was on my clothes, in my bags, every rug, sweater, hairbrush, and floating around in the kitchen. And, also, kisses are a big source. 😀
5. Hearing : The cutest part of bringing home a puppy are the adorable sounds it makes. Those little grunts, snores, burps, squeaks, toots become such an indispensable part of your life. Agreed there were times when I have thrown a pillow at Moony to shut his barks at the invisible monster, but then he would throw in a squeaky whimper and all would be forgotten. And then he would start barking again. Trust me, dogs talk to you, and you only have to respond back anyhow you like, and watch them go at it.
I miss every bit of Moony and what he would do to my heart. I miss all the love he held for me and his various moods and his king-size personality. I miss the effects his sight, touch, smell, taste and voice had on me and how soothing that all was. All of you who have a furry friend to go back to, go give your dog a biiiiiggggg hug and tell them PB loves them.
kashid 131
14

What to do when you spot your crush…

… A La Princess Butter.

  1. Stare at him from crowds, hiding behind people, or between the machines at the gym.
  2. Consider talking to him, and keep considering that till the allotted 30 days time period for ‘over-thinking’ is over.
  3. Forget how he looks like, and mistake someone else for him and get yelled at by your buddy for being a ‘floozy’.
  4. Try not to stare like the said shameless ‘floozy’ at his lean, tan, physique…………
  5. Try not looking like you and your buddy are a thing, specially when you both enjoy silly antics in public.
  6. Make your buddy catch signs, like engagement/wedding rings, the slogan on his university tshirt, the year on his school jersey, etc.
  7. Finally make a decision to smile at him.
  8. Attempt to smile, and then stop midway, and look like you are trying to cough up something nasty and watch him return an undecided half-smile.
  9. Cringe in embarrassment for being a chickensh*t and continue staring at TV at the oddest angle from your machine while doing chin-dips.
  10. Go crazy on the internet looking for the guy and get other friends involved in your utter stupidity.
  11. Disregard any advice about the sane method of ‘smiling , saying hi and a normal introduction’.
  12. Continue being a weirdo and make #foreveralone your motto.
17

Yes, I am vegetarian…

1. No, I don’t care if you eat Beef/Pork in front of me. 

2. Yes, I do eat eggs. Yes, I do feel conflicted.

3. I do consume dairy. I am not vegan. Yet.

4. Even though I like salads once in a while, salad bars are not my ideal places to eat at.

5. I do get things outside to eat. Even at steak houses. Heard of Mac-N-Cheese? Karl Strauss has the best one I have ever had.

6. No, I don’t care if we are all going to a meat spot to have a good time. I will drink and make merry. Except, Korean BBQ. Nope.

7. My health is fine, thank you very much.

8. I have all the protein I want.

9. I don’t just put fake meat in all my food.

10. India is not 100% vegetarian. In fact,60% are meat eaters.

11. Again, not all Hindus are vegetarians.

12. I don’t ask you 10 questions about your food, so I can expect the same, hopefully.

13. I CAN live without meat. I promise you I am not a zombie.

14. Yes, this food that I am eating right now is vegetarian. You KNOW I am vegetarian.

15. If you sneak meat in my food for shitzengiggles, I WILL pull a Ramsay Bolton on you.

Every. Single. Day. 

12

Dating Tales : Boy 4 : Date 1

A lot of people have been asking me to chronicle more dates or setups that are going on in my life. I feel extremely sad to disappoint you all, and myself, that there aren’t a lot of those things going on even now. At this juncture, the past is out of the window, but it takes all the effort to not be a 3 year old who says ‘eww’ and blushes when someone mentions a boy.

I have spoken to a few people, and met 3 so far. The first was depressing, with his hypothetical question and declaration that he may move back at any point to India and he doesn’t mind living in a one bedroom apartment with his parents. I was too stunned the whole time to react and he took that as me being high. Yes, he asked me that. And I was not, I promise.

The second one went alright, but the dude got back with his girlfriend, with both of us clear after the first date itself that we were better friends than as a couple.

The third, was a bit of a basketcase when it came to communication and definitely needs a mention here.

So, I came across this guy and let’s call him Mr. Y. He was from a town close to my city back in India but he went to college in my city before moving to US for his grad school and work. He is an IT guy and he definitely was the kind who studied all his life, and aspires to work for the Silicon Valley bigwigs. He told me within a few moments of the date that he is getting interview calls already from Facebook and Google. I did not feel like telling him that they call literally every techie in California, with a lot of my friends actually succeeding the interview rounds. Anyhow, here goes the timeline of our exchanges.

Saturday was when we started texting each other and it was a short exchange of 3-4 texts where he confirmed to call on the next Tuesday at 7.30 pm. It sounded more like a corporate meeting scheduling than a getting to know each other conversation.

Tuesday, he texted at 7.30 pm to check my availability to answer the damn call. I called him back right away and we spoke for 20 min, where there were really long pauses and I could hear a very slow and sad background music that could exist in that part of my biopic if ever made. Towards the end of that call, we agreed to text on Friday to confirm a spot to meet on Saturday for a date.

Friday evening arrived, with clockwork precision, Mr. Y texted and asked if a Starbucks would be fine. I asked if he would like to go to some other coffee shop, and that I had a few nice places on my Yelp list. We decided on Portola in Costa Mesa because it is adorable with it’s industrial interiors and I have always wanted to go there.

Saturday afternoon, we met at the coffee shop, talked for around an hour, and yet I left from there feeling like I did not know him AT ALL! The only recall value was how nice my coffee was, he liked NBA, and he had a Scuba license that he told me 3 times about. My impression of him was a vanilla software techie, with a Scuba diving license. One thing irked me big time was the way he was pronouncing my city’s name. It bothered me way more than it should have! We left the cafe after telling each other that we’ll text and stay in touch and see how it goes from thereon.

10 day later, until Tuesday, I saw no message or call from him. I was sort of mad at him for not even sending a polite text like it was nice seeing you, or something sweet. So, in all my anger and ego, I texted him that since we have had no communication with each other, we may as well end it here. My outlook is, if either of us would have felt inclined to meet again, we would have texted.

On Wednesday, Mr. Y replied apologizing for a late reply. His reason was that he was unsure of what to reply because he thought the meeting was great and he was going to suggest to meet a few more times. I was so confused! Because at what point did he think that I knew about him wanting to meet more! Anyways, I decided to be nice and offered to meet again and give him a second chance. And I waited.

Until another 10 days later, on Saturday again. I swallowed my pride and I messaged him only to find out that he was in San Jose with his friends. I talked about food(because that’s my fav topic) for a few minutes and told him that I was running the St. Paddy’s 5k like every year the next day, Sunday.

Monday, he messaged asking how my run was. I said that it was very fun and I had a great time with my friends. He said ‘nice.’ That was it. Those were our last sentences to each other. It has been more than a month.

Such a lack of attention is a turnoff for this princess. I don’t understand. There were 20 messages to each other in a span of 1.5 months almost. Is he still thinking that we got along very well, and has he assumed we will be meeting more? Only God and Mr. Y know!

 

6

Of being a p*tty mouth…

This post is not for underage kids, although I seriously question if kids these days even sit down to read anything while they are busy with their BAEs and YOLOs.

F*ck is a four letter word and not a three letter + asterisk word. Profound thought right? (For the curious, I use the asterisk, not because I feel shy of using these words, but to prevent pervs from landing on my page.) It has been a part of my vocabulary like clockwork as soon as I entered high school. I still was a good girl when I got into junior high, but by the end of it, I knew many more such fun words. My speech was still relatively clearer when I started college. Enter my friend AM, and the F word was rolling off my tongue with surprising ease. Since then, I have struggled hard to keep the usage of such slang to a minimum, but alas, the damage has been done.

My first memory of cuss words, are through my uncle(dad’s brother). He has no control over his tongue, or over that bottle of alcohol, for that matter. He would cuss like no tomorrow and the little me would gaze at him in part amazement and part disgust. He used Hindi swear words too which just have a tendency to leave a worse impression on me for whatever reason. Maybe I am an elitist in my head, I don’t know.

My father has always been very constrained about using cuss words around me and has lost control very rarely. Some of the times have been India-Pakistan cricket matches where the excitement is generously peppered with slightly milder version of cussing than my uncle’s. Another moment that I remember distinctly was the time my dad and I were at a gas station and the attendant was trying to cheat my dad into paying more money. I think I was in high school then. While driving away, in the car, my dad said a particular word that was in Marathi(my mother tongue) and that was the first time I had ever heard it. I giggled and asked him the meaning, and threatened to tell my mom if he refused. Very sheepishly, he answered, “Female reproductive part…” and shushed me after that. I had fits of laughter the whole way home and obviously I relayed the incident right away to my amused mom.

I have definitely struggled all these years to not utter the F-word in front of my parents. But after I started working, frustration is often vented out to my parents and nothing helps me convey my feelings better than calling some particular people F-ing morons. They have been surprisingly okay about it, but do ‘ahhemmm’ a bit if my swearing goes out of control. An occasional thwack on the head helps too. I try everything in my power to not use these words around kids. They are going to be exposed to bad words at school later anyways, but I don’t want to be the person who polluted their seemingly innocent minds and vocabulary. I don’t even want to be a part of the conversation where after my careless utterance, they would want to know the meaning. Also just generally, I would like to clean up my language a bit more. Hearing people use swear words like punctuation, for seemingly no reason, has started to make me cringe. Heck, I cant maintain conversation with some people who obviously think that swear words are the ‘in thing’. I cant watch a lot of TV shows that have free flowing abuses. I have trouble reading and enjoying articles with too much slang.  It’s just a general preference that has become more nuanced with age, like enjoying Planet Earth over MTV Roadies.

But unfortunately, the feelings conveyed through ‘That F*ck@ll pig’ are still way more satisfying than ‘That terrible person’.

9

Actions and pro-actions

Of course I have 800 issues with the world and it’s people. Also, these days 800 seems to be my favorite number to describe anything. What annoys me the most is when people do not act on issues they are already aware of, and are completely sure about future problems arising out of those. In my humble(not so much) opinion, I am quite pro-active and take care of most of the things in a timely manner, unless it involves long term life decisions. Then, my head is firmly buried in the sand.

For the uninitiated and my readers from outside India, I belong to the state of Maharashtra from India and we are called Maharashtrian or Marathi. There are a LOT of communities in India and almost all have different cultures unique to them. Weddings in different communities also involve unique rituals and customs. There is a ritual in Marathi weddings where the groom’s mother sits in between the couple and holds out a mirror where they see a reflection of the trio. And then after that(or before, not entirely sure) she will use a comb to lightly do the bride’s hair(lightly because she doesn’t want the bride to flip out by ruining the elaborate and expensive hairstyle). Every Marathi wedding has these rituals and everyone knows what’s coming. Yet, the mirror and the comb are the last things to be bought during wedding preparations, almost as an afterthought. Due to that, they get the ugliest comb and mirror, from roadside vendors, that are made out of cheap plastic in garish colors like bright pink, green, yellow, brown. Aaargggh! Way to ruin the pictures! If I ever get married, an intricately made comb and mirror is going to be a part of the first set of purchase!

I get uncomfortable with indecisive and weak willed people with respect to food. My first issue is their lack of will power which extends across their personality rather than their food habits, but for the sake of the topic, I will restrict myself to diets. I was talking to a friend the other day and he commented that he went on a diet to bring his cholesterol in control and reduce weight. Then he told me how he was out of groceries since a couple of days, and had to eat $0.49 Ramen for lunch and dinner. My question was why would he not go and replenish his refrigerator and pantry on time when he knew he was going to be on a diet. Why react when he could have pro-acted on the choice he had made? He knew his food chart, and his plan. I got further annoyed when he said that he did get groceries, but not enough, because he thought he will go back within the next couple of days to the store. Sheesh! And we are talking about a guy who rarely goes to the grocery store more than once a month and then eats a bag of Lays for dinner. Everyone goes through lazy grocery days, but when it is a habit, there is a problem.

Airports are stressful, intimidating(with the TSA and all that) and a place where you have to be on top of your time! When I get into the line for security, I start checking my pockets and put the phone in my handbag. Next, I take my belt off and put it in the handbag as well. I try wearing slide-off shoes like Toms or Bobs to get in and out of them quickly. If I am wearing boots, I unzip them in the line, ready to take them off right away. And then, when I am almost at the security conveyor belt, I am usually stuck behind someone who has shoes with elaborate fasteners, a jacket with more buttons than my entire wardrobe put together, enough necklaces to put 2 Chainz to shame, and to annoy me further, bracelets, bangles and watches. Then at the body check area, they will go “Whoops! My phone!” Enough said!

There are so many, many more things that bother me, but I don’t want to elaborate anymore because I want y’all to think of me as a pink unicorn who walks in a cloud of lavender. But the gist is, if there is something you know that HAS to be done, PLAN AHEAD! You may be totally chilled out, but my blood pressure is at stake(for no reason). And in a teeny, tiny way, it may prove useful to you too. 

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.)

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.

6

Castles in the air

It’s a semi-rainy Thursday in here at work and I can see some sunlight poking out of impossibly fluffy clouds. My boss has left for the weekend and I am somewhat done with what I had to do but not completely done with the project. I want to finish it soon, but as of now, my brain refuses to deal with it. I can imagine a hundred other things that I could be doing right now if I had the liberty to flake at work.

  • Food taster : This is the life you guys. Getting paid to go out, eat and review food has to be one of the best professions around. I refuse to pay heed to Debbie Downers who talk about health, fats, monotony and such bland stuff. I would love to do this if I get a chance. Order a bunch of food, taste a bit of everything, and down what you like best. You generally get to try a few courses and get served in the best possible way. After your meal, you get to skip the depressing part where you have to whip out your wallet. Eat, repeat, and bolt. And workout.
  • Hair and makeup model : I am an odd person. I absolutely love it when someone is doing something to my hair. Even if they are barely braiding or even just touching my hair, it makes me all happy and tingly. Same goes for someone working on my skin. Aah, bliss. I understand that a lot of beauty and hair bloggers/vloggers need faces and heads to work on. Do think of your homegirl, will ya?
  • Dog walker : Dogs. DOGS! Do I even need to explain how much I love the little, or big, furry, or hairy, buns of pure affection? As mommy has strictly asked me not to get one for the next few years, I have to be content with doggie-sitting my friends’ dogs which doesn’t happen often enough. I have looked into a walking service, but my visa won’t quite allow me to get another job even if it’s just paperwork and unpaid. I have looked at volunteering also, and so far things haven’t worked with respect to timings. Hopefully, soon. I look forward to walking puppers, requesting them to poop and then ensuring that they do know ‘Who’s a good boy!’
  • Sand castle architect : The one place I look forward to most for the coming summer, is the beach. The warm sand, the blue water, golden sun-rays, useless sunscreen, I look forward to all of that! I think I would be really good at drawing up blueprints of castles and instructing my minions, err, groups of kids, to build them according to the plan. I can make really pretty castles and my mechanical engineering background gives me a good idea about material strength and malleability of sand. So, why not?
  • Cocktail artist : I can mix up some basic alcohol and have a general idea of what goes together with what. I have been reading up a bit on mixology and I have a teensy crush on female bartenders. There is a certain badass attitude involved and it gives that extra flair to the profession. I think I can do it. Except the juggling skills, where I will be a disaster, thanks to my total lack of hand-eye coordination.
  • Chocolate quality analyist : If there is heaven on earth, it’s not Kashmir, but the Ghirardelli or Lindt factory. Even if all that chocolate kills me, I will be at peace knowing that I passed on with a kick of endorphins. I will gladly accept half of my current paycheck, if it means trying out every piece of new chocolate to come out of those stores. I don’t even want to write anymore about it, because it makes me so misty-eyed and drooly.

I have good alternate career plans to look forward to. But as of now, back to calculating the correct blade exit angle and the velocity profile.