Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A bus ride

Shanti struggled to move away from the gross middle aged man. But no matter how much she managed to inch away from him, he used every opportunity to push himself against her. It was extremely unpleasant and there was no more space to move in the bus which was filled with people hanging in all directions and holding on to anything possible. She had already given him bad looks and indicated her displeasure in several ways. This was by far her worst experience in all three years of college life travelling in public transport. Just then the bus halted to a stop and she felt a guy, a student from a neighboring university push the man away in an effort to get down himself. Just as she began to wonder if he intentionally created enough of a distance between her and the man, he whispered in her ear that she will not be disturbed anymore and got down. The gratitude she felt in her heart for his understanding cannot be put in words. To think she had always been suspicious of the young college students before! Registered & Protected

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Secretive India

Yesterday I was trying to find some scientists in the field of veterinary science from India. I wanted to invite them to be peer reviewers for the funding agency that I work for. So this is all for a good reason.....I am not stalking any of them! Really! But the Indian university websites continue to suck....we are in a modern world, where everything is online; all transactions are online, and public, but Indian universities continue to think it is a sin to give out names of faculty and their email IDs!
The quality of the websites is another disturbing issue- some of the best brains of the world belong to an Indian head, but why bother with our own websites? We will design websites for the entire world, but not our own! It is so sad really.

So, yesterday I accomplished nothing by trying to help Indian scientists earn some honoraria. I went to an American university site and had a list of 84 names and email IDs of professors in less than 10 minutes! A good percentage of them are also originally Indians. Sigh! When will we learn? Registered & Protected

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Filter Coffee

I am a coffee husband likes to call it 'coffee addiction', but we differ as always!
I have always tried my hand at making filter coffee ever since I left home to the US in 2004. The coffee in the US disappointed me then, it was watery and people added a spoonful of 'cream' instead of the other way around at home! It confused me and I settled for many years for instant coffee, which also suited my student lifestyle. I finally did get used to making coffee using a coffee maker the US way and settled into a nice rhythm.
After moving to Qatar, I tried my hand at using the stainless steel filter, and had several disastrous episodes- the powder blocked the holes and made the hot water flow out of the wrong side, took an enormous amount of time to collect into the next container as it is supposed to etc., to name a few!
However, my parents finally got me a great coffee maker from India and I am now a regular filter coffee drinker :-) Finally!
My biggest disappointment in life is that my spouse has no habit of drinking coffee!!! Not even tea!!! I fail to understand how such a life is possible, but no amount of persuasion from my side has made him change his unforgivable ways! He makes an exception very rarely and those are much cherished days. Yesterday he had a cup of coffee late in the evening (since he had a headache). He was about to choose between tea and coffee, when I claimed he had to have coffee for a headache and he decided not to argue with my very stern face! My happiness at making two cups of coffee is really not me it indicates spousal affection and how things are meant to be. I can assure you that I would have been complaining heavily and drawing out a timetable at whose turn it was to make coffee for the day if this was indeed the case. However I do miss this experience on a regular basis.....I guess I am pretty old fashioned in some ways, right? Registered & Protected

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Happy Birthday to my little Sandy! Registered & Protected

Almost a year ago, on Nov 5th, 2009, I brought home my beautiful adopted friend Sandy. I saw her that same week once before when I went to Qatar Animal Welfare Society (QAWS) to scout for a pet friend whom I would start off by fostering and see how things go. I always knew in my heart that there was no way I was going to give up any pet after fostering him/her for few months, but thats how I started as far as my family and friends were concerned :)

I was looking for a medium sized dog, female (as they were always the least wanted), bit quiet (as I was going to have to leave her home alone during the day when I was away at work) etc.,
I saw two dogs fitting this description, a white terrier type female and a brown beautiful mom, who actually looked like a deer-fox cross, with two adorable puppies! The puppies were already very much in demand, but of course the mom was not. The puppies were already at an age where they were a bother to her and needed to be weaned. My cousin and I walked the two adult dogs and I liked them both very much. My heart however went out to the mom who for sure needed special care and love for her to regain her health. I asked the vet about her past and was told that a Korean lady had dropped off her and the pups. Apparently she had been left in a closet(!!!) when the lady went to work and she let her mate with a Saluki for nice pups! I decided to take her home and start with 'fostering' her. I promised her that I will be back for her the following weekend when QAWS promised to keep her ready for me, after completing her vaccinations, general grooming etc., When I made this promise to her, I could see the dissappointment in her eyes that she was not going with me the same day...amazing isn't it?

I went back for her within the next two days to bring her home! The vet asked me if I wanted to keep her name (Caramel) or change it to something else. Since I did not want her to remember any of her traumatic past, I decided on the spot to change it. I wanted a simple name that also suited her. She was a beautiful brown colour throughout and I just called her 'Sandy'. She rewarded my thought with a quick tail wag and has accepted 'Sandy' as her name ever since!

The ride home was a bit confusing for both of us; she did not like the car and was confused; I was wondering if I was doing the right thing, as I was in Qatar (where dogs are not really appreciated), and a single woman working full time. However we made it home and Sandy was feeling a little out of place, outside. This was however not the case as soon as I entered the house...she jumped on the couch sat in what was going to be her usual curled-up position and looked at me as though to say "so this is where I live now, ok what next?" :)

She was an absolute delight from day one, slept peacefully through the night and made a great friend to have at home. I left her alone the very next day and went to work; I was a nervous wreck the whole day, wondering what she was upto at home. Sandy hated the dark, so I had lights, AC and the TV on for company for her the whole day. When I got back home, she was so happy to see me and the house was still the same as I left it....phew!

From then on we got in sync with each other and it has been one great year. She is a beautiful lady and even ppl who hate dogs in the building have come to adore her! Thank you my sweety for being such a delight in my life, for always being on my side, for waiting for me to get back home, for never bearing a grudge against me, and for your unconditional super doggy love. Happy happy birthday to you my love :)
From the friend you adopted!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Back to work emotions!

First day at work after a 5 week long vacation!
Early last week- feeling of foreboding!
Three days ago- start of depression!
Two days ago- prayers for any natural calamities!
Last day of vacation- researching ways to kill oneself!
Today- Sigh!!!
Now- Not so bad since there is only one hour left at work :) Registered & Protected

Sunday, July 4, 2010


I was watching the movie “2012” the other day. John Cusack’s character asked Amanda Peet’s “Do you love him”; the answer- “I love him enough”.
Says a lot, doesn’t it? Ah, the complexities of love! ;-)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Clear intentions!

Last night, I was walking my lovely dog Sandy….did I mention I have had a dog for almost three months now? She is a darling- well that’s another post by itself! Now back to last night, we just came out of my building and got onto a street that I like to take. A Land cruiser, Qatar’s official symbol, was going in a different direction, but turned abruptly and came right behind me…..I was already bit alert at this point…. I hear ‘Nice’ – I am a little suspicious if it was for Sandy or me, for it was not followed by 'Dog'! A young Qatari complete with the white robe was behind the wheel….here is the one minute interchange that followed between him and me:
Him: ‘Hi’
Me: ‘Hello‘
Him: ‘you life here in Qatar?’
Me: !!! ‘Yes, I ‘life’ in Qatar’
Him: ‘Where are you from?’
Me: Anyway to ignore him? ‘India’
Him: ‘You married?’
Me: !!! ‘Yes’
All I saw next was the wave of a hand and the dust that the vehicle left behind!