that’s the difference often between happiness and the IDEAL of happiness….my husband taught me very early in life ( by default of course) that men have absolutely NO IDEA what you want, what you’re thinking or why you are in that obnoxious mood….you want to him to learn, you want him to know- TELL HIM!!!
Men are less complicated than we give them credit for and actually pretty straight forward. yes, sure some of them still have the wait 3 days before calling rule or the ‘pretending’ that their cool with you not being committed to them is kind of their only games and since we girls know the rules; these games are not the fairest of games!
So what do women want– men just ask them and women stop playing the ‘if you knew me, you would know…’ game and just blurt it out! stop imagining that one day he’s going to get it all ‘just right’, because he doesn’t know what ‘just right’ is unless you tell him at least once!!! And yup, just tell them. no games. i want commitment. i want coffee. i want to go to see a rom- com! i like birthdays!!! tell them what you want…its a heck of a lot easier and you’ll be a heck of a lot happier…because in time your man will keep it in mind and get everything ‘JUST RIGHT!’ …just the way you had it up in your head!!!
on the flip side maybe you’re both wanting different things..isn’t it easier you know now than 5 years down the line!!! so talk, shout, COMMUNICATE!
it’s not their fault for screwing it up…if you don’t tell them what they screwed up in the first place…right!
so the last month has been full of jet set getaways, 5 am flights, hectic rehearsals and even some outdoor shows! Yes! In summer! But it was also filled with tons of laughter, 9 people dinners, strange ‘dance’ movements, marco polo games in pools and tons of pranks! To say that this was undoubtedly one of my most ‘funnest’ (yes that’s a word now!) summers would be an understatement!
We move to the final weekend for the final show in Chennai of this tour of ‘Love bytes’ and I have to say i’m going to miss it all! I have done so many plays over the years, made so many friends…but this group has almost become like family!..so here goes
The cast comprises of Aditya my beloved husband and uber star when he comes for my productions…he needs sleep, rest and work out time! I love it I love him!
Gaurav, who’s petrified before he does his lines and before a show. He is also the person who most recommends the 5 am flights back on sunday mornings…
Rashi– who dances in her sleep …no I mean really…she comes into every hotel looking like she is sleep walking and yet she dances on the elevator music like a star!
Sanket– he’s done shows from A Personal War to Love bytes and a strong reason for his love for Balancing Act Productions is my uber handsome husband! No they just play trial pursuit and other silly games on his phone…what did you think I was talking about!
Chaiti- the newest member of the cast…always with the latest goss and the coolest places to hang out…chaiti is a Walking-Party-Pages (pun on yellow pages if you didn’t get it!)
Areesz-with his huge tattoos and his working out mania is eventually just a big ol’ softy!
Niranjan– he’s the Assistant Director & Sound guy in the show and takes our non-stop harassment and taunts…He also doesn’t know how to swim….something we learnt after we pushed him into the pool!
Michael– Lighting director extraordinaire–unless ofcourse he’s fed up of the scene and he blacks you out 😉
Things I’m gonna miss (in no particular order…and just a few of them)
Watching my ipad 2 in the plane with Michael as he falls asleep. He pretends he’s watched but there’s no way he has …after all im the one lifting his spectacles and dropping them back on his nose every few minutes of the flight….if he didn’t pick up on that …he’s definitely not watching csi!!!
Seeing Sanket in a shirt ( that messy sod comes in the same black t-shirt to every show…not superstition just plain lazy but quickly puts on his crushed shirt as he enters the hotel to impress me! i love the shirt– crushes n all!)
Pranks on Chaiti (my goodness she is the easiest to prank and I enjoy it thoroughly….)! I’ll probably still prank her in Chennai and she’ll probably still fall for it!
Almost drowning Niranjan in the swimming pool while playing marco Polo cos he couldn’t swim!
Watching Gaurav finish ALL the water…there’s never enough bottles!!…We’re lucky the sea is salty!
Areesz and his ironing!
Aditya and his silly football matches and worse still conning us all to see it with him!
Rashi, rashi, rashi….she had her foot in her mouth and ensured that it stayed there (mostly for sanket’s and my amusement!)…she was funny, is funny and wow- she made us laugh!!!
I’M GONNA MISS THEM & AFTER RASHI’S EMAIL LAST NIGHT…I THINK THEY MIGHT MISS ME TOO…
I love you guys…this has been an incredible summer, an incredible journey and some incredible friendships…
p.s.-: I’m no softy so you’ll still get the post-mortem of the previous show before Chennai’s finale! 😉
Soooo the last few weeks have been un-blogged and un-talked about cos i wasn’t in town!!! and no…before you say….i could’ve still taken 5 minutes to update my blog…i have an excuse….i quite literally went to heaven…. and to places where there were no televisions forget phone networks!!! and for those of you who think that switching off might be tough and had someone told me this earlier , i would’ve probably changed my trip….i have to say- i made the right choice! i was in heaven. un-connected, un-fettered and free!
kangaroo island (australia…off the coast of adelaide) was the most beautiful place in the world i have ever been to and that’s saying alot cos i love travel and i travel a heck of a lot…but as we arrived to the cottage that masqueraded as an airport and while we drove on the narrow rode richly covered with green trees and bushes on either side. The beauty was stunning …almost like an Agatha Christie book opening where she describes a chauffeur driving her to an ‘old manor,….’ the ground still moist with a mixture of dew and rain!
Far from an old manor….when we arrived to the Southern Ocean Lodge , it was not even remotely old …or a lodge except for the beautiful fireplace in the central lobby. The hotel looked straight out of a James Bond flick! Sheer glass and then an incredible cliff drop! Cliff faces and more sea then the eyes could even see. The cliff overlooked virgin beaches and more incredible forest area!
I felt like dancing. I glanced a quick look at my phone…The usually ominous words of ‘No network’ seemed like music in this calm serenity. The fact that our rooms …also sheer glass front with nothing and nobody outside ( it was a cliff edge) had no television only inspired me to watch the most fabulous television ,I’d ever seen….I looked at nature and marveled at how incredible this glorious island was and it was infinitely more interesting than some of my favourite shows! I felt alive. I felt free. I felt inspired!
This is when I knew I was in heaven.
kangaroo island created 2 scripts off me!I wrote, I dreamt, I slept !
I saw seals in their natural habitat at seal bay–watched a mom suckle her pup and the pup roll over satisfied and happy… i stared at koalas as they tried to camouflage themselves in the foliage to fall asleep. I watched 2 kangaroos playful punching each other and watched wallabies rush across the roads shocked that cars would even think of driving across their terrain!
And most importantly I laughed with Aditya and we talked and we dressed for dinner and we hiked! Without being tied down to communication which in it’s essence is supposed to bring you closer…we became closer!
Sitting across a table eating, laugh , sharing –is alot more satisfying than tweeting ‘i love you!’
i still remember this day 5 years ago. i was crying incessantly after a sleepless night and the makeup just wouldn’t stick with the tears. ravi, the makeup dada kept trying to pacify me saying ” he’s a good guy…don’t worry!” and yet the tears kept flowing…
i have no idea why i kept weeping but the idea in indian society of the girl leaving her home is so prevalent and my love for soapy hindi love stories so incredible; that it just seemed the right thing to do and the only way weddings were started! my eyes didn’t dry till much later that evening where after 2 weddings and lots of kibbe from souk at the taj i collapsed in an exhausted heap in to bed!
i didn’t want to be married. i was still commitment phobic and it still took me almost 8-9 months to introduce you as my husband….i just said …and “that’s my…..–aditya”- when being asked to introduce you!
cut to 5 years earlier where you first asked me to date you…my only question was if that would be exclusive? if it were to be exclusive , i would have to only go out with you…would that really even work???
i was a commitment-phobe and you were my best friend. i had loads of boys after me…but very few who were as important to me as you were…did i really want to risk that?? i was bad at relationships but a really good friend…i was scared!
cut to 5 years prior to that. i had never laid eyes on you but heard about you as mr. sydenham and a hottie. you were competition in a theatre festival during malhar. you walked up to me in the middle of the quad and said ” hi,i’m aditya. and you have beautiful eyes!”
i remember glowering at you for trying to get my defences down. i remember scurrying away shielding myself from random women glaring angrily at me wanting to scream out- ” i don’t know him…he’s competition… p.s.- i may even hate him!”
it’s been 15 years and you’ve stuck it out with me through my madness ( which there is a lot), my commitment phobia (which doesn’t seem to bother you) and my bluntness (which i seem to be proud of cos i never seem to change)—and these are my positive qualities!
so today on our 5th anniversary i must say…i didn’t wake up crying. i’m very much exclusive and i’m proud that you are my husband. we’ve been through many downs together and we’ve made highs of some awful lows. i never thought it’s be wise to date my best friend , forget marry him… but you seemed to know what we were doing and i’m glad i trusted one person ( YOU!) with my life!
you make me a better person…you make me smile more…you make me laugh more… you made me learn how to love!
the weekend started with the usual ,” where should we go? “, “where should we eat?” debates…i mean a week of home food, no sugar and plenty of exercise makes weekends THE MOST sought after days ever! this weekend was different…it was the weekend before my fifth anniversary. Now aditya and i make it a point to never be in town thru anniversaries…anniversary’s we believe, is about re-connecting, chatting, long walks, laughing, exploring new cities and eating at fabulous new ‘undiscovered’ gems! in my past anniversary’s i have swum with sharks, jumped off a plane and gone on the world’s fastest roller-coaster thereby shifting a disc on my back!
this anniversary we wouldn’t be going anywhere…anand my cousin has his wedding coming up and the family leaves for kerala on my anniversary (i.e. tomorrow) and we are stuck in mumbai, looking after my puppy ,cookie!
this is the back story.
naturally my parents were guilt-ridden about leaving on our anniversary and spent the last week convincing us that they definitely needed to take us out for lunch, brunch, dinner or anything we were up for….
so the weekend started with the lunch with the parents…the lunch was fun and we were getting ready to go back home when ‘the bread story’ began.
my mom needed bread and since we were dropping her home -could we go past the taj where my sister had chosen and left out some bread for her…my sister is director pr at the taj and my mom said that since it had been kept out for her-would it be too much of an inconvenience if we swung by the Taj.
naturally i said ofcourse we’d swing by and it would be no trouble at all…
i doubt the president of India has as much security as the Taj does and so naturally we couldn’t find parking….i was okay with this…since it seemed only a job that would take less than a minute or so- till aditya piped in- he wanted bread too and would it be a problem if i went and got some for him.
i was cross…relaxing in the car after a heavy lunch; i was quite content to go back home, watch a couple of tv shows and crash….my idea of the perfect weekend day; but aditya was insistent. i offered to man the car while he rushed in but that was vetoed by him and so quite crossly i went in to the taj with my parents and speed-stomping my way to la pattisiere.
halfway down the corridor…i heard ‘ divya’ and some more shouting saying ‘come back’ and went back towards the Taj palace reception where i was greeted by a smiling taj receptionist who prompty proceeded to garland me and wished me ‘happy anniversary.’ despite her being a few days early, i chose to smile and not correct her because that might take a bit of time and i was rushing to get aditya’s bread. this must have been a cheesy but very sweet joke on aditya’s and my sister’s part i thought…so i strutted off again with a renewed sense of urgency!
once again i was stopped and told that bread was not necessary…it WAS all part of a plan that aditya and my sister had worked out— but there was more…and aditya was on his way to tell us what was next!
aditya came in and was greeted with garlands and a tikka and behind him i saw an overnight bag packed and ready. we were checking in! even if just for a night…he wanted to ensure that we had our 5th anniversary and created an almost exact replica of when we first came to the taj after our wedding….
nikhila, my sister had upgraded us to the dolphin suite which was luxurious in every way and within minutes we were changed and at the pool replicating our first stay after marriage at the Taj!
how my control freak self did not see luggage packed in my car or notice the swimsuit/ night clothes missing , i’ll never know… my only excuse is that on any day i’m not a morning person and more so on weekends !
how my husband still managed to surprise me 5 years into a marriage is still amazing…
and the weekend was even more incredible than i ever imagined…the first time ’round i was living for the first time with my best friend…i was still trying to get this ‘marriage thing’ right… now 5 years later- i still get the ‘marriage thing’ wrong. i shout and scream and don’t say the right things all the time or sometimes any time at all- but i’m still with my best friend and if it’s possible….i love him more!
so the australia ad is out and aditya and i are happily proclaiming our love for australia…an un-scripted ad…it was terrifying to shoot…not only because i was terribly unwell that day but because as a theatre person i have always believed in the power of ‘THE SCRIPT!’…. it went off fine and well the results are for all to see!
this brings me to the point- aditya and i have been asked to endorse several products… for some brands we appear young, truthful and fun…and they seem to want to appeal to others like us which is great but we decided to make a conscious decision to support/ endorse brands and products that we totally and completely believe in…aditya has had several solo endorsements from peter england to lays chips– but we always decided we would endorse things we actually use or in this case a country we actually enjoy!
in a world where celebrity endorsements is big money i believe that when a celebrity endorses 8 or 9 products– as a consumer it gets confusing especially if they are in similar categories. for a celebrity to make a difference to a product, i believe that they should endorse fewer / more targeted products so that their being on screen makes you look up and remember the product that they are endorsing.
also i think celebrities should be accountable for the product that they are endorsing. they should believe in it. i still remember the amitabh bachchan ad for cadburys….after cadburys had had an issue with loose packaging and insects eating at the chocolate in supposedly wrapped bars. Not only did cadbury change how their chocolates were presented, they also had a very strong ad by mr. bachchan where you saw him walk through cadbury factories, discuss the issue and then give us the peace of mind by saying that he found all their systems clean and he believed in them. he addressed the consumer, made you remember the ad and added a stamp of worth to the product.
in today’s day and age -you never remember who’s endorsing what and with the amount of endorsements they are each doing you can’t remember what the car/phone/ soap is?!!!
it’s time for a rebranding exercise for both the brand and celebrities…let’s choose smarter, wiser and let’s not try and convince the consumer to use/ try something we’d never even touch unless we were paid crores to!
so been getting lots of posts and tweets regarding my views on marriage….some feel that i think (after the amount of advice i give;-) ) that it’s too tough…others ask if i’m anti-marriage or for love and still others ask if i love the concept of love too much and therefore love the concept rather than the actual thing!!!
so i’ve decided to put speculation to rest…for myself and for the rest! i was and have always been commitment phobic…anyone who knows me knows the only thing i was more scared of than marriage was children (any child) and birds (well ….that’s another story entirely!)…but when i got sick and paralyzed i was scared that i may never experience the comfortability of holding hands, of coming home to someone , of just being able to be with someone and so when my ‘knight in office-wear’ (aditya) proposed i accepted as i thought it was important to go thru as many life experiences as i could before (God- forbid) i got back in hospital again…
since then i approached marriage as a journey, a life lesson and an experience and i believe i have lived through it…
marriage is about making mistakes and finding someone to forgive you. it’s about going the wrong way knowing your lost and still going along because it’s ok if the 2 of you are lost together. it’s about fights and tears and laughing over spilt milk…. it’s about learning together. it’s about growing together and give and take…it’s about knowing that every day won’t be perfect…but it’s pretty awesome finding someone who’ll smile for you when you get home…it’s about having dreams and having a partner in crime fueling your madness and even when you come crashing down to the hard, cold ground…it’s about your partner pushing you back up and re-convincing you to be mad all over again!
days won’t be perfect when your married…but then perfection is sometimes over-rated…you are going to have to learn to share when you’re married; but then again, you share the tough times and the tears as well!
in an instant world – don’t look for an instant match… wait for him/ her. search for true love. when you find true love…don’t expect it to be perfect…remember he/she needs only to be perfect for YOU!
so this weekend was the mahesh-lara wedding and so friends and family dutifully trooped to give the couple the best wishes on their newly married life!
the wedding was beautiful… a white wedding ( my first)…i watched with tears in my eyes as they walked down a ramp created at the top of fort aguada for a private ,personal celebration and an exchange of beautifully written vows while members of the audience and the bride brushed away emotional tears….live singing,funny anecdotal messages from parents and friends and very public displays of love by family and friends for an intensely private couple was what the weekend encompassed!
weddings are lovely…if done keeping the couple in mind…i loved mine because everything from what guests ate on the wedding to how the decor was done was chosen by me…. it meant hours sitting with chef oberoi and checking on the flowers on the day of the wedding….but because i did…it was mine …it was perfect and it was personal!
mahesh and lara choreographed their own sangeet …told stories of how they met and argued on who woo’ed who!?!…. a celebration filled with love, laughter and more than a few exchanged private smiles between the bride and groom made for an incredibly fun sangeet….the wedding and reception was also planned by the couple without the 100 wedding planners in sight and was a warm and fun with married couple (like aditya and me) smiling joyously and the singletons dreaming of finding their perfect match like these 2 have…
here’s wishing lara and mahesh- a long and perfect love match!
i love love…well when people ask me why i go overboard loving a day that’s not even an ‘official’ holiday or birthday or something….i gotta just say…well in a world where people love war and love hate and love pain and love so many ugly, ugly things…i think it’s a pretty good deal to love love and to love valentines day!
i think it’s important to actually take some time out to celebrate mush and rom- coms and love stories…it’s important to date someone even if you’ve been with them forever…to dress up, smile and be wooed again…it’s important to bring back the twinkle in your eye and to have your heart skip a beat! it’s important!
to those who say they celebrate love every day / every week….then stop using that as an excuse and still send the flowers over, make a reservation …take ur lady out and make her feel like a girl again…giddy in love and happy!
so what did i do?
well yesterday we had our play…love bytes…a packed auditorium…a 150 seater packed with over 600 people!!! incredible, filled with moments of wondrous passion for theatre….acting opposite aditya was truly amazing…it was like we were part of an orchestra yesterday and we fed off each other, played off each other and though the audience clapped after every scene and seemed to love us…we had an even better time…i believe!
and then he surprised me by bringing in v- day! so i assumed , we’d go to the regular souk or thai pavilion…we were dressed to the hilt and high after an incredible play and thunderous applause! but we passed the taj and then didn’t turn off towards the president and kept down marine drive, passed home and suddenly moved into olive…. one of my faves! but that’s not even the best part… he had organised a private table…with the red table cloth n all…and a special menu…just for the 2 of us… ALL MY FAVOURITE DISHES! and the personalized menu…had us on the cover and it had a poem written to me….HIS VALENTINE!
i almost wept with delight…i am impossible to surprise(me being so nosy n all) and have such fixed favourites in terms of food, ambience and everything and he’d combined it all to make the most perfect evening!
my first valentine date with him was 9 years ago…and yesterday TOPPED THAT!
so being a couple is fun for all the obvious reasons…yes i mean what you think i mean– cuddling ( get your minds out of the gutter people!!!)…but its often very very important to see if you are more than just great looking people who are attracted to each other! if your partner and you have done / can do most of what’s below–well then i think its meant for keeps….
GO ON COFFEE DATES TOGETHER (JUST THE 2 OF YOU!)– Now I know you think this is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay to easy but think about it..everyone looks more attractive in dim lights and under kilos of make up and then again, having a few drinks makes some of the most uninteresting people fun, to themselves and to us! Hanging out with friends also gives you only snippets of conversations with your beau….leaving you wanting for more…so test it out -go on a one-on-one with him / her in the day and find out how he/ she really looks and whether their that fun sober and most importantly whether when there’s no loud music and screaming people…whether the 2 of you actually have things to talk about!
GET TO KNOW THEIR FAMILY– A huge part of who a person is…depends on how he was raised. Get to know his/ her family…Like them/ hate them…see how important he/ she is to them or what he/ she has learnt from them and a huge part of a puzzle will be solved. else there’ll always be a big chunk of the puzzle missing and trust me…this piece is the heart of the puzzle…it’s who he/she is… You don’t want to leave it till the end!
TALK ABOUT MONEY- The biggest reasons for break ups is money…so if you r getting serious start figuring out if and when you move to the next stage how money is going to work…who’s going to spend and how much and what everyone’s expectations are…lay it out!
SAY I LOVE YOU AND MEAN IT– For some..saying ‘ i love you ‘ is not a big deal….Know when you mean it…It’ll be when you feel it in every pore of your being…Unless you both feel this way….one of you will always be looking!
VACATION TOGETHER- are you a beach person and him a snow lover? does he love cities and do you need down time…. can you vacation together without wanting to kill each other?? a toughie….cos vacations is when we need to relax and want to relax. can you do down time WITH your partner or does he/she invade your space?
GO THROUGH A ROUGH PATCH– Now here I am not saying that you have to go through a rough patch asap or NOW! But what I am trying to say is that its important that you understand how your partner and you go through a rough patch..because in life there will be several ups and downs… and its important to know how you BOTH deal with a down! Are you / him a partner in fair weather…HERE JUST ASKING SOMEONE DOESN’T WORK….you have to go thru it!go thru a bad together and make it still work for you!
FIGHT– a really good and proper fight and make up and get through it! That shows you that you can retain your individuality and not care that the other person will leave you over an argument…Love is stronger than arguments and marriage is more than just a couple of fights!
PLAN THE FUTURE – what do you want ? what does your partner want? are they both very, very different?
DO NOTHING– So there will be evening where you both don’t have anything to do…no dates, no parties, no dinners….just you….! Can you both do nothing together?
CHECK THE LIST– Every one of us had an ideal person that we thought we’d be looking for…put the qualities of that imaginary person ( BUT BE REAL IN YOUR DESIRES…I MEAN YOU’RE PROBABLY NOT GOING TO GET SOMEONE WHO HAS A FATHER RICHER THAN DONALD TRUMP & WHO HAS A HOTTER BIKINI BOD THAN PAM ANDERSON DID!) and weigh your current against the negotiables (physical attributes) and the non-negotiables (character/qualities/work/family/money/religious beliefs/family ideals etc) and see if you’ve got a good match….if you have move heaven and hell to make it work!
…on a totally different note….rehearsals for sunday’s show have started and we are currently starting a campaign against one of the actor’s… SANKET BRUSH YOUR TEETH….with your own tooth brush… (don’t even ask!) your support will be greatly appreciated!