Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's day!

Happy Father’s day, to the best father in the whole world!

Just a few words about the man of few words………..

He has been and is a wonderful dad….kind, trusting, loving, generous, encouraging, devoted, and courageous. A man of principles, he led by example; our family’s role model! I hope we have caught on at least a small percentage of his qualities!

As a child, I loved being given baths by him, food tasted extra delicious when it came from his plate… never mattered that I already finished lunch/dinner, I would always be ready when he started eating, for few more mouthfuls from him :-)

Memories I have of him are more of the subtle kind; many many of his words have stuck with me and I like to think I always act by them. Hope he feels the same and is proud of whatever my brother and I do.

One incident very close to my heart- I had participated in my first college level elections and was a nervous wreck the whole week and more so the final days before results were announced. Finally after we had the results, I called home excitedly and told my father I had won! He, in his signature calm voice told me, “We always knew you would win da, only you were tensed. Come home soon, we have reserved tickets to go for a movie tonight, to celebrate”!!! Could I have asked for a better father with any more trust?

Thank you for being you appa, love you very very much. You are our pillar of strength!
Happy Father’s day!

My post about my mom for Mother’s day is now on --> Featured stories! This is a great website and I think a lovely tribute to mothers. They are finally going to put all the stories/tributes together as a book...what better way to appreciate our mothers right? Do send your own articles to, or submit online at the site. See below email from the webmaster for calls for the same.

Dear Sunitha
Thank you for your story about your mother. It is now available online at where you can access and read it.
Please also let your friends and relatives read your story online and perhaps they too will write and submit stories about their mothers. Together we can make this the greatest tribute to mothers. Hope you will blog about this too.
With best regards

Monday, June 15, 2009

Message to my teen-aged self? ;-)

Ammani ( is a writer I admire so very much. She had asked her readers to write a letter to their own teenaged self for "If I knew then what I know now".

This is what I would tell my own self: You never regret the things you did, but will always regret things you did not do.

It is here in Ammani's blogspot too:

:-) Thanks for the opportunity Ammani....keep rocking!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Iranian Souq

Last few weeks have been quite hectic at work, but I have had loads of fun during the weekends. I finally made it to the Iranian souq/Old souq/Souq Waqif as it is called. Apparently this souq, which is about a hundred years old, has been majorly renovated in the last few years using of course, lots and lots of money! The first thing that struck me….” Ok does not look too bad! Can still step without inhibition on the stone pavements…..quite clean in fact!” and once we entered, “wow, what an amazing smell!” It actually smells like a native medicine shop, for whoever is familiar with that kind of smell from India. There are so many small shops around and they all look so inviting, as you feel like going and discovering all the hidden goodies in these small places :-) Most of the items are not packaged goods, but rather open in boxes and they will weigh out what measure you want and pack it up. While Asians may be used to this concept from olden days, it is no longer the custom in most places, and is hence very refreshing. I felt like I was walking the streets of old Tamil Nadu, with the small shops, and wooden planks for doors…..anyone remember those types? ;-)

One can get almost anything from these small shops in the souq……henna powder in huge boxes… many varieties of them – black henna, red henna, coarse types, softer types, etc; Other herbal powders, dried flowers for various purposes, dry fruits, including dried pomegranate arils; this is one of the best discoveries I have made in any shop in recent times! It is so deliciously sour, goes so well with other dried delights like almonds and walnuts, or even with breakfast cereal. All kinds of spices used in cooking are also available in their original state. The huge barks of royal cinnamon are an example! Best part, you are allowed to sample anything edible before you buy ;-)There are also things like dried, whole limes, crushed and dried garlic (that looks like chips), etc, which are all apparently widely used in the native cooking here.

Once you finish this side of the souq, the alley opens into a broad area with some very nice, what I call “junk-jewellery shops”! I started using this term since my childhood because my father always thought buying gold was the best thing you can do; it is an investment and good planning. I, his daughter, always loved anything that: 1) was not made of gold or any other metal of value 2) was huge and antiquey looking (mostly) 3) usually had no resale value of any sort and 4) were usually quite expensive too! These lovely shops carried beautiful chains, bracelets and earrings made of stones, antique looking metals, beads etc. Some of them were a bit on the expensive side, but many quite reasonable. I am trying to convince fellow family members that I can actually wear some of them for my wedding, but am met with caustic glares (or rude admonitions if on phone) that often silences me after some initial mumbling :-(
I have already been to the souq twice in three weeks for, of course, what else but these shops!

Now are you imagining the souq to be made of all these kinds of shops? Just when a newly visiting person may start to write it off so, a Basking Robins/Dunkin donuts branch appears, inside the souq!!! Just as you are beginning to recover, there is a Costa coffee! And also………….wait for it…………….a Häagen-Dazs outlet! There are also other restaurants, shisha (?) cafes and some interesting eat outs. The best part about it is you can sit outside in the open stone pavements and enjoy your cup of coffee or food here. This of course is subject to temperature conditions and by that I mean “NOT NOW in summer”! It is a boiling 50° Celsius already and nobody fails to inform me that it is “just the beginning”!!!

There were also some clothes, shoes, and kitchen accessories kind of shops, which did not interest me too much. There is also a ‘pet shop’ kind of area where they sell birds, kittens, rabbits, etc. these kind of places usually only make me sad and I left that area as soon as I could!

On the whole the Souq was a wonderful experience and I am sure I will be there for some essentials and not so essentials quite often ;-) Looking forward to showing some people around soon, so people, start visiting!

Can a letter be romantic and practical at the same time?

What a beautiful letter (below) by Beethoven to his beloved! How can one write such a romantic letter that is also so practical at the same time?

My angel, my all, my very self -
Only a few words today and at that with pencil (with yours) - Not till tomorrow will my lodgings be definitely determined upon - what a useless waste of time -
Why this deep sorrow when necessity speaks - can our love endure except through sacrifices, through not demanding everything from one another; can you change the fact that you are not wholly mine, I not wholly thine -
Oh God, look out into the beauties of nature and comfort your heart with that which must be -Love demands everything and that very justly - thus it is to me with you, and to you with me.
But you forget so easily that I must live for me and for you; if we were wholly united you would feel the pain of it as little as I -
My journey was a fearful one; I did not reach here until 4 o'clock yesterday morning. Lacking horses the post-coach chose another route, but what an awful one; at the stage before the last I was warned not to travel at night; I was made fearful of a forest, but that only made me the more eager - and I was wrong.
The coach must needs break down on the wretched road, a bottomless mud road. Without such postilions as I had with me I should have remained stuck in the road. Esterhazy, traveling the usual road here, had the same fate with eight horses that I had with four - Yet I got some pleasure out of it, as I always do when I successfully overcome difficulties -
Now a quick change to things internal from things external.
We shall surely see each other soon; moreover, today I cannot share with you the thoughts I have had during these last few days touching my own life -
If our hearts were always close together, I would have none of these.
My heart is full of so many things to say to you - ah - there are moments when I feel that speech amounts to nothing at all -
Cheer up - remain my true, my only treasure, my all as I am yours.
The gods must send us the rest, what for us must and shall be...