The Jungle Book

I grew up listening to the track ‘Jungle jungle baat chali hai pata chala hai ‘  and it was the most exciting part of my Sunday :).

Mowgli, Bagheera, Baloo, Raksha, Shere Khan were all eternal part of my memory. each and every episode of Jungle Book was as exciting as it could get. As soon as I saw the theatrical poster of The Jungle Book I decided that I have to watch it on the big screen. My favorite characters coming live on big screen and in 3-D :D…. what more could a fan girl could ask for !!.

I was following the updates regularly to know the cast and crew of the film and could not hold my excitement to watch the movie. Finally the movie was released and was running full house in all the multiplexes and a friend of mine watched and told “You must watch the movie to get the feel of it. Everything about it is amazing!!!”.

It was then I decided to go and watch it no matter which show it is. It was a Saturday morning show with my buddy. I was filled with child-like excitement :). The opening scene with Mowgli on big screen was enough to get me glued to the screen till the end.

Moments when Mowgli was attacked by Shere Khan and Mowgli getting trapped to Kaa made me jump out of the seat!!
The cruel Shere Khan, oh so seducing coice of Kaa, the always cheerful Baloo, Mowgli , Mr.dependable Bhageera, Raksha, King Louis and many more characters were done to perfection, right from the visuals til the voice overs…. everything about Jungle Book was just so so perfect.
The 2 hours were the best 2hours I spent on a movie reminiscing my childhood and came out of the multiplex with a wide and happy smile :):).

As Baloo say
Look for the bare necessities
The simple bare necessities
Forget about your worries and your strife
I mean the bare necessities
Old Mother Nature’s recipes
That brings the bare necessities of life

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Sing along!!!

Summer vacations !!! :)))

Summer vacations !!! :)))

Summer vacations are the best part of childhood to any child. It is the time which brings back beautiful memories . The thought of no school, no waking up early and just playing till your heart’s content is the life every child likes to live :D.

Back in 90’s when air travel and luxury vacations were not the norm ,our summer vacation plan would be travelling to Bangalore to visit grandparents and cousins. Staying in northern part of Karnataka and experiencing the soaring temperatures in summer, vacation in Bangalore was the best part of summers for us :).

Back then Bangalore was devoid of the mad traffic, the IT companies, ola , malls and metro. It was that time when we could travel from Majestic to J P Nagar in 20mins and travelling in auto was a luxury. The heavy dose of pampering from grandparents, yummy fingerlicking-ly delicious food prepared by grandma , playing and watching cartoons like disney hour, tom and jerry, swat cats, jungle book and many more… we were nowhere far from heaven :)))).

A day out to Jayanagar 4th block was mandatory. Back then 4th block was the go to destination for shopping. Clothes, accessories etc etc.,

A visit to Hot chips for french fries, pav bhaji and Vidyarthi Bhavan for a yummy masale dose…..and the gorging on ice cream- ball ice cream, mango ice cream, mango duet, pista and butterscotch….torino, lollipop, uncle chips, rose mint, ravalgon, nice biscuit…… those were the best days :):)

… and not to forget the overdose of mangoes, in the form of fruit, milkshake, juice or raw mangoes in pickle, mango rice and what not :)..

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Summer vacations meant playing on road unlike now where kids enjoy playing on their ipads and smartphones.Its sad to see Temple run and candy crush replacing the good old games like gold spot, I spy, lock and key, lagori etc.,

I must say kids born in 90’s have had best childhood and vacations with wonderful memories to cherish which makes us want to get back to childhood 🙂

Avani hills- unexplored gift of mother nature !!!

Avani hills- unexplored gift of mother nature !!!

“My vow is to visit Avani hills” my aunt told us after her daughters wedding. It was one of the vows she had taken so that the wedding gets over peacefully. “It is a small hillock and will not be taxing to climb” she rued when uncle told that it is an arduous task to climb it given that it was the month of peak summer. Finally we relented to her plea and decided to visit Avani on the following weekend.

We were intrigued to know what made Avani hills so special and she explained that avani is a small hillock near Kolar in Karnataka and it is one of the rare temple dedicated to Devi Sita. She also mentioned that there is a room in that place where the twins Lava and Kusha were born. Legend says that after the exile when Sita had no place in Ayodhya, she took shelter in sage Valmiki’s ashrama built on hill top which is now Avani . It is also believed that the war between Lava- Kusha and their father lord Rama happened at the same place.

We set out to Avani on a Sunday morning. As per the instructions given by uncle’s relatives staying in a nearby place we had a plan chalked out and decided to start the trek before the heat wave starts to hit us.
After pampering ourselves to a sumptuous breakfast and well stocked hydrants we were all ready to conquer Avani . We visited few temples in the vicinity which were dilapidated but had a story to tell in their remnants.

As we reached the foothill,  Avani was standing tall in all her glory inviting us to trek and know more about her. We began the trek with a lot of enthusiasm as the initial rocks had well carved steps which made the climb easier. Then started the tough time with rough cut rocks and heat wave hitting us,  it was time to hydrate our self well ,help elders to climb without any problem and also the hot sun did not deter our enthusiasm to click some pictures. There were many slips and falls because of the smooth rocks at few places which compelled us to trek bare foot. The blistering heat made us to consider going back, but the locals kept up our spirits high by helping us with the trek and also explaining the stories behind each and every carving we saw. It seemed like each rock and cleft in avani had a story to tell !!.
We could see few small ponds called “teerthas” created by Lakshmana for devi Sita to quench her thirst, bathe and wash clothes etc., It is believed that these ponds have never gone dry till date. We could see fully bloomed lotus in white and pink colours which is a rare sight in a concrete jungle like Bengaluru.

After an arduous trek of about 2 hours we reached the Sita temple on the hill top. The idol of the deity was small yet powerful. We bowed our heads with respect, attended the puja and stepped out of the temple  to a serene and calm view of nearby lakes and little hamlets. The strong breeze and the huge turquoise sky above us made us forget  the strain of the trek and soak in the calmness nature offered us. We thanked devi Sita for the blessing she showered on us and mother nature for giving us Avani hills, a calm serene and unexplored place devoid of the maddening city traffic !!!

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the trek way
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rock formation
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lotus pond
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lakshmana teertha
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sita devi temple

QUILLING

Quilling is an art form in which paper strips are rolled , shaped and glued together to create fun shapes which can be further used to design greeting cards, pictures, decorate boxes, models,  jewellery etc.,
Quilling is started by rolling up a paper strip using a tool called slotted tool and pinching the rolled papers into fun shapes which can be glued together.
Paper strips are available in different colours and textures and are easily available in any nearby fancy stores.
I was introduced to quilling by a friend of mine 5 months ago and from then on it has been my friend when I am bored, it has brought out the artist hidden in me ….  B-) 😉

There are numerous tutorial videos on  YouTube about quilling different shapes and bringing them together to create beautiful artefacts. I started my quilling journey preparing different flowers and birds :)… they were cute little creations of mine which gave me immense satisfaction of learning something new and executing it to near perfection !!

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After initial trial and errors, I started making bookmarks and then one video about making fashionable and lightweight paper jewellery grabbed my attention and thus my journey towards quilling jewellery.
Colorful accessories, customised to required shape and size and various colour combinations to match any outfits…. what more a girl can ask for!!!  😉

Its cost effective, lightweight and the satisfaction of creating something for yourself and your loved ones is priceless.
Hoops, studs, chandbalis, jhumkas etc., with little trinkets attached to them 🙂

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So, what are you waiting for?? get set go….. quill and let your creative juices flow free 😉 🙂

Cancer- The war we din’t choose!!!

For most people diagnosis of cancer is a life changing moment invoking varied feelings of fear, sadness, anxiety, loneliness, anger and huge shock. There will be talks of diagnosis, prognosis, recurrence, and end-of-life discussions in worst cases.

As any normal person would even I experienced  myriad of emotions and many questions like “Why me? , Why now?” creating ruckus when I was diagnosed with “Hodgkin’s Lymphoma – stage 3″.

The diagnosis came as a shocker to everyone around me and we were all shattered . Even after doctors assuring that it can be cured with chemotherapy and regular monitoring after the therapy it was difficult to sink in and before I could realise the enormity of the situation the dreadful chemotherapy had started. After numerous pricks and 7 months of treatment I am glad that i could beat it and come out of it The bald head look never bothered me but many questions like ” why and how?” are still haunting but I have decided not to run behind these mysterious questions.

In the course of the treatment I met various people undergoing  treatment, all of them were warriors in their own way. Warriors who had not chosen this battle yet fighting to be victorious. Cancer hits you both physically and mentally. In many parts of our  society cancer is still considered a ‘taboo’ and people are subjected to discrimination and stigma which creates fear and discourage the person from coming out of the shell and discuss about cancer in public. In these 7 months i have realised that Cancer care givers, doctors and the way they are treated in the workplace makes a huge impact in the course of treatment.

Cancer care giving can also have an enormous influence on both physical and mental health. Cancer carers – most commonly partners, family members or friends often receive little information or support, and as a consequence many of them experience emotional distress .Providing the right support for both the carer and the person living with cancer can help with coping and improve quality of life.

There is a substantial financial burden associated with cancer patients and their carers both in out of pocket expenses and in lost income and benefits. A supportive approach from employers can reduce anxiety and provide the skills and confidence to deal with cancer at work. Making adjustments such as supporting a phased return to work can be an important factor in getting people back to work successfully. A job can restore normality, routine, stability, social contact and income.

Chemotherapy comes with a huge baggage of side effects which will have some impact on the physical appearance of the person. Issues of body image and well being can have a significant impact on  relationships  in many cases . These issues are not restricted to only women, male suffering from cancer have to go through various issues too !!!

Counselling to patients, care givers ,accepting the way the person looks after the treatment and doctors advising the patients on the diet and exercise plans during and post chemotherapy will make a huge difference in the way the person handles cancer.

Whilst cancer can be a difficult topic to address as there are many myths surrounding it, particularly in some cultures and settings, dealing with the disease openly can improve outcomes and helps in coping the disease with confidence and lead a normal long life post the therapy.