Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Brought to you bai... BAI!!!

I know the title sounds like I am already facing some kind of mid life crisis… But to tell the truth, I actually may be… Just that it should be called pre-mid-life-crisis… (just to make me feel a little better) Both my maids are giving me a tough time black mailing me for a hike, a bonus, a saree, plea to get me or my roomie married, etc. Hence this post is dedicated to the two absolutely lovely ladies I know… My maids….

Bai 1: My cook, whom we have employed since last year is without a doubt a great cook. But apart from that she has some more striking features:
1. She is convinced by the fact that any preparation that does not form a mini swimming pool of oil in the pan is NOT edible.
2. She confuses groundnuts for salt. So we end up having affluent quantity of groundnuts in ALL the vegetables, but err salt may or may not be there… Depends on what kind of a day you are having…
3. She makes full use of available resources. So if on a particular day good amount of ghee is available at home, her hands won’t even shake a little before cooking the whole meals in ghee instead of oil. [I am trying to lose weight here…]
4. Her excellent time management skill is one quality which amazes me… Our Bai 1 has the key to the house so [we trust her if not her cooking] she is at liberty to come any time. By ‘ANY’ there is a reasonable unspoken understanding of the time window. But the excellent time manager that she is, she usually comes in at 4 PM to cook DINNER. Rest of the time she utilizes watching TV (again, use of all resources).
5. She is an adroit at story telling. Taking benefit of my na├»ve mom’s emotional heart; she made her believe in the story that Bai 1 will be chucked out of her house if she doesn’t pay the owner 2 grands COS the owner is in dire need of money. (Sure) Although she made it clear to my mom that in case Mom cant give her the money Bai 1 will start staying on the streets in her old age with no one to look after her. My Mom gave her 2000 bucks AND a packet of Paneer. Apparently she also told my mom that she loves paneer but has NEVER tasted it.
6. Bai 1 takes HUGE offence if even a morsel of what she cooked is left over. She gives me a ‘Show cause’ notice every time some food is left over. My roomie nonetheless makes sure we don’t have any leftover by giving away the food to Bai 2 early in the morning. We learned to respect food because of her.

That’s about her. So Bai 1 now has to pay back some 3K to us, and she falls ill. She decides there is no harm is asking for more money in return to all the hard work she does.

Bai1: I need 500 Rs
Bai1: I need to get some tooth extracted, need it for that.
ME: But you already have borrowed 3K, return that 1st and we can discuss this later.
Bai1: Don’t you feel anything for a old person who feeds you daily? I am in PAIN.
ME: See you ask my roomie for money, she gets more salary.
Bai1: But you are the one who is caring and talks to me.
ME: Sorry, I cannot help this time.
Bai1: OK, FINE. I thought you had your heart in the right place. And today is an auspicious day, so I asked. But fine, I will stay in pain.
ME: <> Please, close the door when you leave.

Meanwhile, I can’t get rid of the sick feeling, discuss this with a friend. She thinks I am heartless too. Aaargh!!!

Bai 2: The maid who does (rather supposed to) cleaning and washing clothes. But she also has some excellent qualities that I would like to highlight:

1. Speed: She can finish brooming, dusting, washing clothes and gossiping about all living ppl she knows in less than 7 min and about 32 secs.
2. Communication Skills: She is an ace communicator, come Hindi, Marathi, Gujrati or English; she knows it all. Also, she won’t give up any chance to display the skills (it’s all about selling yourself these days) by speaking all the 9 words she knows in each language apart from Marathi.
3. Caring Mother: She makes sure to give her kids ample time daily. So she gets them to work daily. Those kinds in turn make sure that they play with everything in the house, starting from my laptop, TV, microwave to books, furniture, dustbin, etc. And mind you 7 min 32 sec are enough for them to create havoc. (Her own genes after all :P)
4. Friendly: As mentioned in point no. 2, she is an extrovert and a communicator. This also makes her a friendly person. My friends who come over for stays, have developed a warm camaraderie with her. She also makes efforts to take the friendship forward by blatantly commenting on how short, stout, dark and ugly they are. All in good humor off course.
5. Integrity: Bai 2 is working for us for over a year now. She is ideally expected to daily but she does manage to grace our place twice a week with her esteemed presence. We raised questions on this but were duly shut every time with some or other reason. BUT, Bai 2 is a female of integrity; after 13 long months she told us, its not possible for her to come daily so she will come only twice a week and we can reduce her salary a little for the same.

These ladies make my life so interesting and happening. This post is my humble effort to showcase my love for them. Much in the same way they do it, daily.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


In my last post I anounced Youthopeia. Here is more on what it is about:

What is about?
Youthopeia, as the name suggests is a HOPE, but it doesn’t stop there; it’s a passion and a vision to bridge the gap between the Rural and Urban youth. We firmly believe that youth can bring about a change and YH aims at exploiting the enthusiasm of the youth for a better society, a better country.
The concept of Youthopeia came up after a lot of brainstorming on various issues which can act as catalyst for change. The best change agent would be change at grass root levels. YH is way of sharing the privileges that we are blessed with, with the underprivileged counterparts.

What’s the mission?
To empower Rural youth to increase their participation in social development of Rural India. Simply put, its making the rural India capable of solving their own problems with an initial impetus from the urban folks.

How does it work?
1. Taking road trips to villages and establishing a dialogue with the Rural counterparts.
Understanding their problems and coming up with feasible solutions after discussions with other fellows
2. Working with Secondary/Higher secondary schools to revitalize the interest in education, by showing the kids the BIG picture and making them meet possibilities.
3. Using the social media and Internet to spread the buzz and awareness.
4. Buddy program: Wherein every volunteer will be made to for a buddy group with the rural counterparts and will be actively helping them out with their problems, queries, information or just being a good listener/friend.

Initially, villages around Pune are targeted. But if anyone want to take this idea up in different part of India, we will help as much as possible.

Who are we?
1. Not just another NGO.
2. WE are not change-makers, we strive to create them.
3. Believe that the one who faces the problem knows the best solution.
4. Induce the mentality for change in the minds where the need is felt the most.
5. Its not about participating in some event on a weekend, getting a t shirt and updating the FB/Twitter status. Its about developing a relationship with the rural counterparts.

YH is an attempt to see a change what we truly believe in. If you believe that you can make a change, do visit YH.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

BACK !!!

Where the fuck was I?? Is that the immediate question that will follow?? Well, fail enough, I have been hibernating for over 2 months now. I should be happy that the blog survived such tough times. Ppl keep asking; why is the blog dying, what are you up to, where are all the reviews and accounts of occasions you promised will be on the blog????? I have been hiding and running away from all these questions. Here are a few answers…

Enduro3, immediately after the Delhi trip, oh the Delhi trip was with college friends for 5 days in and around Delhi. Enduro 3 was an incredible experience, from buying the cycle to the never ending practice sessions to long email threads motivating and de motivating each other to deciding the team name and finally quitting after the grueling competition. This left me very exhausted both physically and mentally.

TWITTER, one of the main culprit is Twitter. It has kept me away from my first love, Blogging. But soon enough I realized, Tweeting is just like a one night stand, it can make you happy w/o any commitments but a blog is where true happiness lies. I will still keep visiting Twitter but will never forget you, my Blog.

Reading, its one of the better reasons of staying away from blogging. I have been reading some off beat stuff for a while now likes of Curious case of a dog in the night time, Never let me go, Animal farm, 1984 and the Inheritance of loss. Each book a different kind of delight, each with a different voice and scenario. Loved all the time I spent with Christopher, Kathy, Snowball and folks. I wish I could do a post on these books but I do not consider myself worthy enough to review any of these books.

Youthopeia, certainly the best reason for being away. YH is trying to bridge the gap between rural and urban India with the help of the youth. It’s a way to spread the hope to the ppl less privileged that most of us are. I wont say anything much here but would like to urge everyone to visit the BLOG and know more. Its one thing I always wanted to do and finally the wheels are moving. Contribution, feedback and comments are most welcome.

TEDxPune, the latest addition in the host of activities. The day I came to know about TEDxPune, I jumped on the opportunity of becoming a part of something so amazing and exciting. The first meeting was last Saturday and it was a great opportunity to network with some of the most passionate ppl in Pune. Looking forward to contribute more to the event and making it a HUGE success.

Apart from all these reasons, menial excess like laziness, hanging out with friends, outings, movies and sleep kept me busy. But now I am back and I plan to stay J