Tuesday, June 30, 2009

list: The simple sounds of Summer

While I load some new CDs onto my iPod, I jot down some of the little sounds of summer that make me happy.

some of the little things that I love....
~hearing the tiny birds peck at the window in the afternoons...
~listening to the dull thud of a ripe mango falling to the ground outside my windows...
~reliving the joy of listening to old music....currently listening to In the Ghetto by Elvis Presley....
~enjoying a revival of old style music....Duffy's Mercy coming up next....
~setting a fun ringtone on my new cell phone...
~relishing the sound of lawn mowers from the neighborhood. It's the desert here, remember, having a lawn is a luxury....
~missing the sound of the all the ice cream vendors....
~water splashing from the hose as the kids play in the water....
~the tinkling of ice cubes in a glass....

Enjoy the summer!
It's burning up here....46C here yesterday and with the heat factor added in about 50C. Can't wait for cooler weather....just 5 more months :-) It's a test of will power to focus on just the good things about summer!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

on the road

~A local village house with the traditional slate roof. Fagu is along the crest of the mountain behind, above the left gate.~

Driving through Himachal has been something that I have always loved, especially exploring the back roads where one might see some really beautiful and unspoiled spots. On our trip to Mashobra, we took the Bekhalty road to go to Narkanda instead of going on NH 22 via Kufri. The Bekhalty road was the original alignment for the continuation of the railway line beyond Simla, which eventually never got made, so it is completely level and is great for walking as well.

~The Oberoi's Wildflower Hall Spa and Resort is the white building with green conical roofs at the top of the hill~

The road starts from Mashobra bazaar and joins up at Bekhalty on NH 22 just before Theog, from where one goes along the crest of the hill towards Narkanda. Incidentally, this is the same ridge as the Simla one and is the continental divide. Toss water down to one side and it'll end up in the Bay of Bengal and the other down to the Arabian Sea.

~Thick forests in this area and very steep hillsides. Can you spot the house hidden amongst the trees?~

The total drive on this road is 17 km from Mashobra to Bekhalty, which is a decidedly longer time than it would take on the main road. Interestingly, the total distance from Mashobra to Narkanda turned out to be exactly the same from either route, since we went one way and came back the other. There was a good amount of construction on this road, albeit in the few patches that opened up in the forest. Many were weekend homes being constructed by city dwellers and probably a few small resorts as well.

~The next valley, which is much wider and flatter, with agricultural fields. There is lots of construction going on in the area.~

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

What a reprieve!

Miracles do happen!

I am still in a bit of a daze, regarding the whole flickr thing, which I really thought was a complete done thing. I am relieved that I still have access to it, even though I now know not to take it for granted, and accept that it can go any time, and that I have to be OK with that.

I had planned a series of things to do, for work and for creativity, to keep busy and not dwell on the fact the such a fun part of my daily life would just disappear all of a sudden. It just goes to show, how attached we all get to things, and this is not even a real thing that we can touch.

airport conversations

OK, so do I have something like "ask me for diet advice" written on my forehead? I didn't see anything like that when I last checked in the mirror, but people seem to be coming to me to ask questions about this left, right and center. Yesterday, a girl sitting next to me at the airport, while we were waiting to board the aircraft, struck up a conversation, and pretty soon asked me what I did to be so slim and trim (as a skinny girl always trying to put on weight, it becomes a bit irritating to hear this, even though it sounds like a compliment), and if I took any medication, what the best diet pills were and so on. She was rather slim and trim herself, so I asked her why she was so interested in them, so very sweetly, she said they were not for herself but her hubby. Hmmmm, not so sure about that one.

Monday, June 15, 2009

photo: valley view

I'm back from my Mashobra trip! It was a good getaway, but June is just too busy a time to go to Simla and it's environs. There are way too many tourists and just too many cars. I will be posting more shots of my trip in the coming week. This shot was the view from our room. Behind the first range of mountains and hidden in the clouds are from left to right...the snow covered peaks of Kulu, Spiti and Garhwal.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

an idea for a patio table

I was browsing through some decor sites the other day and found some really great ideas for patios. While most people use them in the summer, we get to use our outside area in the winter, but having the right sort of furniture and accessories, can make an area a retreat no matter what time of the year it is, right? I am especially keen on getting some kind of a glass tile table, that will weather the sunny days and cold nights of the desert, something that I don't have to worry about moving about too much either, and obviously something too heavy for someone to pick up and take away!

Monday, June 01, 2009

photo: apple ade for breakfast

How about a nice tall glass of apple-ade to beat the heat! We were eating breakfast at The Lime Tree Cafe in Dubai, when I took this shot. This is a popular place for breakfast and lunch...it closes at 6pm and serves no dinner. I love the casual and completely relaxed atmosphere and we try to eat a leisurely breakfast here every few months or so.

Posted here on my photostream on flickr.

would you use a short cut to lose weight?

I met a young girl the other day at a party, who wants to be a model, and believes the best way to lose and control weight is by using an appetite suppressant. She asked me what I thought about them, but I really didn't know what to say. I don't think I've ever known anyone who has used them before, but one reads about people using them in mags and sees the tons of advertisements at the end of the magazines and on the Internet of course. I'm a firm believer of using natural remedies, of eating the right fruit and vegetables in the right season, eating them in the right combination, to look and feel good. Some short cuts are worth it, but by and large, most of them end up backfiring in the long term, so one must be extremely careful. I would recommend consulting with a doctor and getting a proper checkup first.