Walking in the rains…

I know, I know Mumbai rains are to die for! Everyone gushes about the lovely weather Mumbaiites get to enjoy during the monsoon. It is a huge respite from the sweltering heat and everyone looks forward to it with great pleasure. But things are changing and it is never like it used to be. The very fact that the infrastructure in Mumbai is falling apart doesn’t help the Mumbaikar in a great way. I have never found the rains, especially in Mumbai, to be an ear shrieking, jumping -with-joy affair. Definitely not after being stuck up in one of the biggest floods some years back. This is definitely not how I envision the rainy season: Walking in the rains

 This happens only in the movies!

All I can think of is this:

Rain-in-mumbai

When I was a kid, I hated the umbrella because it never served the purpose. I would trundle to school with a mighty umbrella so that I do not get drenched. The queue system in school ensured that the kids learn how to behave and wait patiently till the bell rings. However, the kid behind me would make sure that the raindrops trailing off his / her umbrella dripped right on to my head or my uniform’s sleeve. A fight would ensue and everyone tried their best to avoid each other’s umbrella. How I hated that!! Sitting all drenched in the classroom with four or five students packed on a bench was never fun. Ugh!

The uber cool rain boots (sigh) were even more pathetic. First, there were not much of color choices and designs to choose from like the ones we have today. There used to be solid colors like black or pink and I preferred black, don’t know why. The boots were high enough to make sure that my tiny nubile feet stay protected from the muddy waters. But alas, this never lasted for long.  The rains would fall in every angular direction and thus gain entry into my precious boots and I would cringe. The funny sound it made would guarantee giggles as soon as I entered the classroom. Not very lovely memories of the rain…

As time passed by, I got better equipped to tackle the rains. Travelling by local trains during the monsoon is no small feat. The worst part would be to stand still, patiently, in the crowded trains while getting doused with holy rain water or getting hit in the guts with a phoren-made umbrella. Young college girls with long ferrule umbrellas resembling walking sticks don’t make life easier. And the never-ending fights in the famed Mumbai locals add spice to the damp weather.

But sometimes I do feel like walking in the rains when the weather looks pleasant. I have tried that, really, only to be doused by muddy waters from passing vehicles. The large potholes on the roads filled with yuck do not fit well in the romantic monsoon scene. The gait which I adopt during the rains resembles a child walking on a tight rope. I have heard of so many incidents where people have fallen into open manholes because someone stole the manhole covers for hard cash…Oops! So much for walking in the rains.

Apart from the occasional waterfalls, treks and hikes which people love to go for, there is nothing awe striking about the rains in Mumbai. The hardships which one has to deal with almost wipes off any pleasure the rain has to offer.  I know many of us really love the monsoon and eagerly await this part of the year. We Mumbaiites are blessed with ample rainfall and should definitely make the best of it, but pray, tell me, can I ever get the pleasure of walking in the rain, without a hoot to care about…

Wella Kolestint

As I have mentioned earlier , I am not particularly fond of experimenting with my hair, at least not after the great ‘hair scare’ debacle I have been through earlier. So when I received the latest hair color ‘ touted’ as the best, i couldn’t hold myself back. I tried to experiment with my mom in – laws’ hair. Hey don’t call me mean now!  She loves to color her hair and does it often.

So armed with the new hair color , I set off on my mission– Cover the gray! Needless to say, she was very happy with what she saw in the end. Wella did live up to the expectations, although I would have appreciated if it stayed on a bit longer. Also, I prefer going for the streaks, rather than entire coverage.  I am definitely going to try it out on myself. Have a look at the new Wella Kolestint after application results.

Feel free to share your experiences!

The Fasting Fever

Every time I hear someone in my office talking about their ‘fasting day’ , I have a confused look written all over my face.  Especially when I see them gorging on biscuits which they claim can be eaten during ‘fasts’.  What was the idea behind staying hungry for an entire day, that too partially? My colleague whines that I  get the tastiest stuff for lunch while she is on a fast. :) Somehow, this has never gone down well with me, although I do respect other people’s opinions and their faith attached to ‘fasting’.  I never like the idea of holding the Almighty to ransom by forgoing a day’s meal.fasting, going without food

The major days for undergoing a fast is Monday, Tuesday and  Thursday. (why leave out the remaining three days and make them feel worthless! Never mind…) The concept of religious fasting is as old as the planet earth and Hindus are not strangers to this phenomenon. Some do it to fulfill their wishes, few do it  for a spiritual enlightenment and some, to simply shed off their pounds! I was never an advocate of the ‘fasting trend’ as I never quite understood the selective restrictions. For example, you can indulge in a packet of  hot fried potato chips while you are fasting!! Huh! Or treat yourself to a plate of Sago Khichdi. Who made these fancy rules ? And if you are constantly stuffing yourself , how are you fasting, for that matter?

Recently ,when we happened to witness the spectacular lunar eclipse and the world was going bonkers about the astronomical vision, some of my friends decided to fast on that fateful day! I was amused beyond explanation. Staying hungry because the moon decides to play hide and seek for a while!! And then it’s a different ball game altogether with people throwing or giving away food cooked on the previous day, emptying water cans and thus emptying the house of the lunar dosh. Gosh, I can write an entire post on some of the weirdest superstitions which we Indians believe in.

I always used to ask my mom about who decides what one decides what to eat while fasting…quite an irony, I know. She  used to give me blank stares followed by angry ones. :) Not that I cannot starve myself, but I do not see a logic to it. I can understand abstaining from meat or alcohol as it gives your system a  much-needed break, but going without food is simply going to give out embarrassing stomach growls. So while the entire nation decides to go hungry, including Baba Ramdev, I believe in living to the fullest and let the Almighty do the same! Amen :)

A ‘Fishy’ Tale

Ever got in a situation where you are tickled by a shoal of miniature sized, cute suckers? Oooh, the very thought Garra Rufa, Fish Pedicureof tiny mouths nibbling away at my feet, gives me goosebumps. So, when a fish spa opened up in a mall close to my place, I definitely wanted to check it out. I had read a lot about the miraculous ‘cleansing’ powers of the Garra Rufa fish a.k.a Doctor Fish and was desperate to have a look at it.

The spa salon was bright and freshly painted with pleasant colors with an occasional flower vase here and there. A huge square-shaped water tank with hundreds of Garra Rufa caught my eye. The very thought of surrendering my feet to these toothless healers gave me a prick.  My family had accompanied me and all of them were excited to try it out. So, each one of them got their feet sanitized by the assistant.  I tried to play  safe and ducked out at the last moment. I know, I am such a spoiler! I decided to capture this enchanting moment and went clicking pictures of all random things in the spa.

The tank was buzzing with the doctor fishes. My mom in law and the rest of the troupe decided to dunk in. Honestly, I never thought anyone would bear the tickles for long enough. I seriously wanted someone to agree with me on the fact that it is not easy  to get one’s feet mauled in a decorative water tank! The assistant checked everyone’s feet for bruises and cuts (obviously for the fear of infecting the fish as well as oneself) and then assured us that it will be a relaxing experience. She also told us that the tank gets filtered water and is cleaned every time a customer gets a pedicure done. So my folks got into the groove and happily put their feet into the tank.  Immediately all the fishes in the water gathered around the feet and began their work. All i could hear was squeals and shrieks of laughter. The expressions on everyone’s face was worth a watch. I envied them. One of my uncles gave up immediately as he couldn’t take it anymore.  It felt like a million needles pricking at your feet or like an army of ants on your feet, according to my folks. It takes around five minutes to get adjusted to the tickles. You can see the fish nibbling at the dead skin meticulously.

Since the fishes do not have teeth, it’s a relaxing affair. However i was still unconvinced about the fact that they are happily nibbling my foot. Imagine being tickled between the toes! Humanly impossible! After a 20 minute session of being pleasantly manhandled by the Garra Rufa, a pedicure routine follows. A regular pedicure by the assistant brings back some life to your feet which , by now, feels numb . The entire experience of 30 minutes was reasonably priced. By now the heels and soles of your feet resemble a baby’s feet. Each and every nook and corner of the toes and heels are cleaned thoroughly.  I kept cursing myself for missing the experience. It was quite a rejuvenating experience for my folks and they thoroughly enjoyed the fish pedicure.

Recently, I read some reports which stated that Fish Pedicure is totally unhealthy as the water in unclean and increases risks of getting infected.  It seems the Fish pedicure thing is banned in the US and some other countries. However, the fish pedicure promoters insist that the clean water is filled in the tank every time and special care is taken to keep up the hygienic environment.  May be these are just rumors to cripple the competition brought about by the Fish Pedicure spas.

I loved the experiment, watching my folks rolling with laughter and enjoying their Sunday evening to the most. May be, in future I shall get motivated enough to try the Fish Pedicure on my own.