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Pluto and the other planets!

Dil Dhadakne Do is about Pluto and his solar system (family) – the Mehras. As much as the planets have a motion, speed and characteristics of its own, every member of the Mehra family has a life, pace and individuality of their own. However as much as the solar system binds those the together, the concept of family keeps these individuals together under one roof.

Dil Dhadakne Do is definitely set in a strata of society which is probably that is enjoyed by very few in India. However the problems they face are something universal across any society  I think the idea of presenting it this way was great since people who do not want to really understand the issues, the subtle humour, sarcasm and emotional connects can definitely watch this one for the amazing cruise, the beautiful places and the tastefully dressed characters.

Let us discuss the characters and the issues in this so called ’dysfunctional family’. There is a husband and wife (Kamal and Neelam Mehra) who have lost love for each other, but are sticking together since divorce is ‘not acceptable, in the society’. They have a daughter (Ayesha) who is trying to make an unsuccessful marriage work since a divorced daughter may ‘not acceptable in the society’ and who is repeatedly reminded she is no more a Mehra. The daughter reminds us of the son –in –law of the Mehra’s (Manav) who in this century thinks that by ‘allowing’ his wife to work he is a man of today and is professing the concept of an independent woman. The son Mehra (Kabir) is the most common of them all – someone who hates his job and is scared to take the ‘risk’ of following his passion. Delete the cruise, the lovely locales, the super-rich family and these characters sums up almost every other family we see in India.

Dil Dhadakne Do is not my favourite movie of Zoya Akthar, but is definitely a movie to watch out for just to see the way she has dealt with these characters, the amazing narration, the absence of jarring back ground music (which was refreshing), the subtle humor, the even more subtle use of sarcasm, the sea, the adorable Pluto, the fearless Farah and my favorite Sunny!

When it rained




4. Lets place this one here!

What if…..

This according to me is the most dangerous phrase in the world. As much as it leads to you to explore the innumerable possibilities in the world, it also leads you to question everything that happened in your life.

What if Lakshmi had not gone for shopping that day?

What if I had not agreed to baby sit so that Lakshmi could go shopping?

What if I had agreed to baby sit but not let her take the car?

What if Meenakshi had cried a little more like every other time and made her change her decision?

What if she had worn the seat belt?

What if it had not rained so heavily that day making visibility so poor?

What if a Mumbai had shown the so called ‘spirit of Mumbai’ and ensured she reached the hospital on time?

What if the hospital had her blood group available?

What if she had survived a few minutes more just to see Meenakshi and me before her last breath?

What if I had not decided to move out of our house post Lakshmi’s death?

What if I had not requested a lift back home with a stranger from the airport?

What if I had not noticed the same stranger sitting at the window and drinking her tea?

What if Meenakshi had not smiled back at her?

What if the same stranger had not let Meenakshi and me into her life?

What if Meenakshi had not accepted the same stranger as her mother?

What if…………..

The thoughts were just about to wander away when Meenakshi’s giggles brought me back to reality. Mom and daughter came into the room, completely drenched. They seemed happy and in a world of their own. I didn’t feel like disturbing them.

She quickly changed Meenakshi’s dress and gave her to me. She seemed to be not in a mood to change and was longingly looking at the rains outside as if she wanted to go out and get drenched. As soon as my gaze caught hers, she quickly picked her clothes and went to change.

There was a lot of silence between us. But it’s a comfortable silence. A silence we both enjoy. The rains continued.

When it rained


Somewhere between and

It was yet another rainy, in Mumbai. The rains make the city a lot dirtier and disorganized than it is. Ever since the monsoon started travel in the city has been difficult. Half the cabs in Mumbai break down during monsoon and the rest get stuck in the traffic. Yesterday had to forcefully share a cab with someone staying in the same building, because of the non-availability of cabs. The lady didn’t seem quite pleased with my request, but obliged. I probably would have never asked a stranger to give me a lift had Meenakshi not been at home. I wanted to reach home and be with her at the earliest.

Sunday mornings becomes useless during these months. I do not get to do my early morning run or go for play tennis. Now days the baby’s cries wake me up in the mornings. Unlike other kids, Meenakshi wakes up very early in the morning. My mother insisted that I leave Meenakshi with her since she needs mother’s love. After Lakshmi’s death, I did think that it was a reasonable decision and did leave her for a few days with my mother. But then I realized that at the cost of getting a mother’s love from her grandmother, she should never lose out on my love. She does not have a mother and she will have to live with it her whole life. But she does have a father and hence she need not live without him. Though I think my reasoning is logical, I do think I am selfish too. I hate to be alone and she brings in life to the house.

The rains continued stopped for a bit and I was worried about my plants. The heavy rains and strong winds end up spoiling my terrace garden every year. I was taking a quick glance at them from the window when I saw my new neighbor across the window. She seemed to be having her morning coffee sitting at the window still – completely lost. She did look familiar but it took me sometime to realize that she was the one with whom I shared the cab the day before. She did look different then– detached and very un-emotional. She did look lost today but not un –emotional. Our eyes didn’t meet and I was glad. It would have been embarrassing.

The nanny brought Meenakshi to me. She looked fresh, lively and all ready to play with me. As always she started pushing the window and didn’t stop until I opened it. She was a free child and loves fresh air, wind and the rains –very unlike me. Her giggles and cries did attract the neighbor’s attention. And I think their eyes did meet. I saw her smiling at Meenakshi and got surprisingly got a huge smile in return– quite unusual of Meenakshi.

Suddenly I realized that I was very similar to Meenashi as a kid. Used to smile at everyone I meet. I was a happy child and very sociable. After Laskshmi’s death I have been socially very awkward. I just feel that everyone around wants to talk about it and hence withdraw from any kind of general conversations. But every minute I spend with Meenakshi, I revive a part of me I had forgotten or rather have been dormant. Old memories re-emerge fresh and new and in a completely different form. Today she taught me to be socially active, just by a smile of acknowledgement.

As my thoughts wandered away she kissed my nose and looked straight into my eyes as though she is reading my thoughts and will lead me to revive those emotions of the past!

My wonder girl!



Sleeping, watching television, going out with friends occasionally and watching movies (the trailers of which interests me) are things I end up doing over weekends. The first movie I saw in the new city is O Kadhal Kanmani , which I loved. Will soon write about the movie and why I loved it.

This post is about the second one I watched –Piku. One of the major reasons for me to watch the movie was Deepika. There has been a lot of news about her which were not connected with her performances. Two major controversies were with respect to her interview on depression and footage on women empowerment – both of which I loved.

Well, Piku. The posh Delhi that it is set in, the portrayal of a typical Bengali family, the beautiful Deepika Padukone, the super talented Amitabh Bachan and Irfan Khan does form an integral part and brings in a lot of beauty and character to the movie. But all of this does not take away the most beautiful relationship portrays – that of a father –daughter.

The childish and persistent behavior of an aged father and the irritation that causes to the daughter is something that we see in everyday life. It is great that the director chose to show the real side of life. However I would have loved to see the way the two individuals react and manage the situation had they been put in a surrounding which did not have luxuries like driver to take Piku to office, man –servant to look after the father, a spacious house in CR, Delhi, a doctor who comes to home upon a phone call, an office/ business which gives you flexible working hours, a good financial status, relatives who are not judgmental, friends/ colleagues who are understanding.The reaction of the characters will definitely be different, ,may be unpleasant and definitely much more closer to reality.

All said and done, I still love the movie for the unadulterated elements it gives you – be it music, dialogues or life. I wish to see more movies like this.


I have never liked or taken a keen interest in English songs. It’s a friend who introduced me to the limited number of songs that I can recognize. It was during the time of Google /Yahoo chats . The friend used to sent me the names of the songs that he liked and felt I should listen to. One of the first songs that the sent me was a Bob Dylan number (The answer is blowin’ in the wind) and I loved it.

Years later another friend introduced me to this beautiful song -Rise up (Yves Larock). It’s her caller tune till date. I still remember there was a time when other than hearing to her happy voice, hearing the caller tune was an added incentive to call her!

Today when I look back, I realize that the little that I know about English music and the perspectives I have, is all credits to them and a couple of other friends who did the same. They are people with a genuine taste for good music and hence I got a bit of it too. Does this not apply to any environment or any kind of perspectives that one has in life? I have always formulate a perspective based on the exposure I have got on that subject. My perspective may be different from each one of them but the foundation will always decide the range or probabilities of the perspective I can have. Today, my perspective on English music is different from the two friends who introduced them to me, but definitely somewhere X to Z (assuming the first friend’s choice scores an X and the second friend’s an Z).

An idea

I will definitely rethink before I start the sentence by saying , “I hate the idea of ………………”. Want to know why ?

Read on!

“It is difficult to hate an idea. That requires a certain intellectual discipline and a slightly obsessive, sick mind. There aren’t too many of those. It’s much easier to hate someone with a recognizable face whom we can blame for everything that makes us feel uncomfortable. It doesn’t have to be an individual character. It could be a nation, a race, a group. . .anything.”
Carlos Ruiz Zafó

When it rained (0)


Somewhere before narcissist in me loves this piece of fiction that I wrote! I have been curious to know what happened before or after this the happenings in it, but never got myself to write beyond a few lines. So that I do not keep changing the “her” past and present according to my mood or the song that I am listening to, I have decided to post the few lines as and when I write. This will give me the scope to improve or further the story only on what has happened –just like life. I have also given my self-permission to give the story a second chance at times – like life does 🙂

Blue was her favorite colour and I hated it. But it was fine as long as only she liked it. Her likes did form an integral part of my life – the curtains, the cutlery, the house as a whole in fact and of course the husband. I loved all except the colour. I wonder at times if it is really the dislike for the colour or the idea of not having at least one thing that she liked removed from my life. It just helps me feel that this life is mine.

I have never seen her in person and probably would have made good friends if we had. But today I stand where she stood year ago. Though I am ever grateful to her for the life she gave me, the selfish soul in me at times cringes on the fact that my existence and my happiness today is was hers. I just happened to be at the right place and more importantly at the right time. Meenakshi was a few months old, when Lakshmi passed away. It’s at that point in time I moved in to the same biding where Meenakshi and her father – Arjun stayed. I met Arjun, my husband for the first time at the airport. We both were trying to take a taxi home. The line for the pre-paid taxis was insanely long and we were standing in two parallel ques. He overheard me saying the address to the customer care and requested me if he can join in. I was initially hesitant, but the observant in me did notice his company ID and realized that he is a gentleman. He did not try to strike a conversion all throughout the journey . It was raining heavily and the cab took a long time to reach the building. For some reason the silence in the cab was comforting except for the occasional dialogues by the driver.

Driver : “Baarish aaj bahut hain. Lagta nahin yeh rukughe”. [Its raining quite heavily. Don’t think it will stop any time now]

Arjun : “Hmm”.

Driver: “Main aap dono ke building ke samne hi rehta hoon”. [I stay close to the building the two of you stay]

Arjun : “Acha”.

I wanted to clarify to the driver that we are not together, just in case he thought so – but did it really matter to him? It didn’t.

Driver: “ Aap dono kahan se hain?” [How are the two of you?]

Arjun : “ Hum Kerala se hain”. [We are good]

“Hum!” [“We”] – the word rang in my mind a couple of times. Did he speak for me as well. It did sound odd initially , but then I developed a weird sense of liking to it. It’s been long since someone else spoke for me. I was weaving a lot of assumptions and probabilities around the usage, only to realize that the usage didn’t mean anything more than the fact that he was brought up in Lucknow and hence the language. Though I am not good at Hindi, I did know that the people who speak Nawabi Hindi did use “Hum” instead of “Main” for saying “I”. By the time my thoughts landed on the reality of things the conversation between Arjun and the cab driver had reached way beyond formal introductions and talks about the weather.

Driver : “ Mere ko laga tha app lucknow se hain. Nahin to in madrasiyon ka hindi bahut bekaar hain”. [I thought the two of you were from Lucknow, because spoken hindi of people from Tamil Nadu is bad]

Arjun : “Hum Keral se hain. Madras se nahi hain”. [We are from Kerala, not from Madras]

Driver: “Sab wahi to hain”. [Well, both are the same, isn’t it]

Arjun: “Hmm”.

Arjun chose not to correct him and educate him about the difference between Kerala and Tamil Nadu. This was probably one of the first instances in my life, where he taught me that it is not necessary to explain – clear everything to everyone, if it does not make a difference to your life. It did not make a difference to his life if the driver does not know the difference between Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The discussion between him and the cab driver continued while I remained a listener – occasionally taking my flight to my world of imaginations.

It did take about 2 hours to reach home. Was tiring, but the sight of the sea as we drove down the queen’s necklace compensated for it. Though congested and expensive, I loved this part of the town and the fact that I could see the sea every morning. As we got out of the cab, Arjun paid for the cab and refused to take money from me. It irritated me, more so because I am not used to someone else paying on my behalf. But his no nonsense look discouraged me from arguing.

I was sure that Arjun lived a few blocks away in the same housing society. However I proved myself wrong when he got into the same lift as me. It didn’t take long enough to realize that the both of us stayed on the same floor. We both were trying to press the same floor number. He didn’t seem as surprised as I was. Either it is because he didn’t care or he already knew it. For some reason I chose to believe that it was the latter. Soon enough we reached the floor and we went into our respective flats.