Ah! Those Lovely Days!!

WIAN lovingly asked me and few others to dream, and that too about the time of life for which one would do anything to get back - CHILDHOOD. While at school, one of my close friends used to envy all parents. "They have no History or Geography to put up with" she used to say. Little did we realise that with age comes responsibilities and reading about Indus Valley Civilisation and Latitudes, Longitudes are MUCH easier! Atleast we used to have choice to omit some questions during the Social Science exams :D.

Without further ado, here goes my Super Seven childhood memories :)
1) Childhood times immediately reminds me of the much anticipated summer vacation! In most of the schools using the red ink was not allowed (for the students ofcourse). Now, aren't forbidden colours very attractive!I used to wait for the summer vacation, to pull out all my noteboks, circle here and there for typos, mark a huge tick and do something which gave me utmost satisfaction - signed my name!!

2) I was in std.VII and almost all my friends used to cycle their way to school. Daddy dear either didn't trust ME with the cycle, or maybe he didn't trust the OTHER speeding motorists.. so he used to drop me at school daily. That was the time when the Ladybird BSA cycle was SO famous. But learning to balance myself in the cycle was such an uphill task for me :( My friends were fed up training me and almost gave up. I turned to my Big Bro for help. He very affectionately took me and the cycle to the nearby play ground, made me sit in the middle of the ground, and cycled around about 10 times and said "my lovely sis, this is how one should cycle!". I did settle scores by splashing ink on all his white uniforms. :D.. Alas! Cycling & two wheeler-ing are still unfulfilled dreams!

3) I always look forward to celebrating festivals with all pomp and splendour.. As a child, purchasing for Diwali was in itself a kind of celebration! One full day used to be allocated for the purchase. And it also meant holiday for mom's kitchen! And ofcourse we (mom and me) greedily allocated more time to choose clothes for ourselves. There have been times when I've worn matching bangles, chain, hair clips and earrings during most festivals, thinking that was SO cute! eeeeks!!

4) TV times : There have been times when I used to watch ONLY the advertisements aired. My top favourites were Le Sancy bath soap (which kept us wondering what the product was, and then was swept away from the market days after its lauch), Rasna, Rin soap and Robin liquid bleach :)Other than adverts I used to be super fascinated by Ramayana and Mahabharata! So much that I used to ask my grandma, would I have been a part of either epics in my previous births.. Too much that was, I know!!

5) Play Times : When in std VIII, PT period was the last hour on Fridays. We used to quietly sneak out of the school premises if there was no PT teacher around, and this gave us a HUGE thrill, a kind of college class bunking feel!

6) Worshipping Times : There was a Chapel in my school, and I used to frequent the place, though I'm a Hindu. The differences in praying to God in both forms of religions have perplexed and amazed me to no end. I used to pose 'n' number of questions to elders at home, and they had a tough time explaining. I have inadvertently stepped into the Temple without removing my slippers, just as how I used to visit the Chapel with my shoes on.

7) Home-made icecreams : Well, I am referring to the Bournvita and Ragi-malt kept in the freezer and nothing complicated! But I was SO crazy about relishing this Bournvita ice cream. Every Sunday afternoon, I used to allow the hot cup of Bournvita to cool down to room temperature and freeze it and have it as I used to read books. This used to give me the satisfaction that not even a feast that I cook these days give me!!

I am glad that I was tagged for this. Reminiscing childhood days gives immense pleasure and growing up was indeed fun!!

Kuselan Konfused everyone

I admit. I should not have even attempted to see "Kuselan" AFTER watching the Malayalam version of the same ("Katha Parayumbol")....

Before the movie was released, Rajni had mentioned in some interviews that Pasupathy would be the first hero, Vadivelu the second and he would just be appearing in a guest role (just as how Mamooty appeared in the Mallu version). Now I just couldn't stop myself from wondering about :-
=> Why was he featuring in 3 songs (all of them inappropriately placed)?? Heck! There were just 2 songs in the Mallu version... But then its Rajni here, and his fans are to be satisfied... or were they??
=> There was this person asking (actually mocking at) rajini why he's SO indecisive about entering politics, and why he hoodwinks his fans time and again about what he intends to do? His reply was almost like a SLAP on the face! He says MYOB (in a seemingly polite manner).. Hullo??!! Then why don't you keep your nose out of politics and stop passing suggestive remarks!!
=> "I am not responsible for misleading dialogues in my movie about me entering politics or favouring anyone there" says the superstar in the movie! Like as if someone's gonna refuse if you would want some alterations in the script! Oh but that would make you infamous like Kamal who is often criticised for not following what the director says!!
=> What was the scantily clad Nayanthara doing in the movie? Oh well! I've just said it! she's for glamour!
=> Rajni entertains. His movies though mostly are a complete masala package, do manage to entertain. And that is one reason (among many others like his style) why he sells. But his previous movie ("Sivaji" and that was a blockbuster) did bring down the star's credibility to a certain extent. If one gives a careful ear to some of the dialogues, there were instances which defames his image.
=> Pasupathy (though sans all the hep looks of a typical hero) IS a great actor. But sadly, you need enough scenes to prove your acting ability... which P.Vasu (the director) felt unnecessary, (though he felt the necessity of Vadivelu's comedy scenes which would make one puke).
=> The epic character of Kuselan is of one who suffers from poverty. All through the movie, one is made to guess that Pasupathy is "Kuselan" being the poor friend of the rich superstar (Rajni). But even THAT credit is shamelessly stolen from him.

All said, I'm sure Rajni's next venture (if it has all the usual glamour, songs, fight, style and punch dialogues) would certainly click. People are forgiving atleast when it comes to filmdom.

The Undomestic Goddess-Sophie Kinsella

How bitter and unwelcome could truth be at times? All of us at some point of time would have felt like just waving a magic wand and undoing some mistakes that we had committed... Be it professional life or personal life.

Samantha, 29, a lawyer associated with a top level firm in London, leads the life of a typical workaholic. Her private life is almost non-existent. Living alone, she gets back home daily to find either a note from her maid querying why she had kept cartons of food well past the use-by date or to be mocked by her nosy neighbour of her inability to attend to any of her domestic work. But Samantha has her goals set clear, her dream is to become a partner in the firm that she works, and nothing else matters for her. That her mother is also a leading lawyer, only adds to her resolve.

The day her dream is about to be realised, she's struck by a sudden catastrophe. Much to her dismay, she comes to know that there's a file unnoticed in her clumsy desk, which had cost a client a whopping £50 million. Faced with the "fight or flight" syndrome, she decides to flee from the first ever mistake that she had ever committed.

She could only possibly run away from facing the reality.. Her fame and 7 years of hard work just goes down th drain, and her reputation gets tainted, moreso because of her unprofeesional behaviour of running away.

Samantha lands in the countryside of Britain, in an opulent couples' house, who mistaker her to be a housekeeper. Not having a shoulder to cry on, she decides to stay on under the guise of a housekeeper. For a person who knows nothing more than switching on the kettle when it comes to housework, cooking, hoovering and washing is just about impossible. But Samantha has the fortune of learning chores from Iris, mother of the gardener Nathaniel. And amid hilarious turn of events, she is transformed into a full fledged housekeeper. And there is this love blossoming between Nathaniel and Samantha as well.

She doesn't just learn to cook and clean, but also learns what "living" actually is. Just when she gradually starts loving this no-pressure environment, her original high flying career beckons her. To know how, why and what she does subsequently, you've got to read the book.

However, there are certain parts in the book which looks like forcefully included :-
=> Nathaniel is an owner of 3 pubs in the village and gardening is his passion and hence he's working for the rich couple. Now, this is not quite believable. Though his mom insists that he looks after the family business (running the pub) she ain't against him running a nursery of plants to give shape to his ambition. It almost looks like Nathaniel was fitted into the scene as gardener just to make Samantha fall for him and confuse her decision making (career or love).
=> The rich couple who mistake Samantha for a housekeeper are literally sketched as DUMB IDIOTS. I mean how difficult is it for a woman to differentiate between a brand new set of clothes (say 20 tops) from her own washed laundry?? Samantha spoils and stains her employer's clothing while washing, and hurriedly throws them off and replaces all of them with new ones. And the lady of the house pats her back for washing them so well that they look like new!! hello, excuseme?? I was only reminded of how many shops I had to ransack to find JUST ONE TOP, which was supposed to be trendy at some point of time.
There are some more, but they're spoilers.

Irrespective of some such obviously unbelievable parts, the book makes for a quick and funny read. I found myself nodding in agreement in some places and felt a sense of deja vu when Samantha is just not able to forget her work. The witty humour would make you laugh out loud quite a few times. A must read for workaholics AND for people (esply women) who'd have to make tough choices at some point of time. If for nothing else, one could read it for the humour. Though about stress and pressure, the book would serve as a stress buster!

I would give 3/5.

I'm now gonna try reading one of the author's shopaholic series :D