To all the liars out there…

I have been blessed over the last few years to have been able to eliminate the majority of the negative people in my life which has allowed more space for new, fabulous and positive people in…

These people inspire me to think every day. They inspire me to be better, do more, feel more and achieve more.

But every so often you’re given a blast from the past and are witness to some of the negative people you let go of and you are reminded about why they aren’t with you anymore. These are the people who will lie about you, will try and walk on top of you just to achieve some sense of achievement. And it makes me proud.

Proud that I left them.Proud that I did good.

I am without you for a reason.

I am sorry I still figure in your conversations. And you need to spin it, to make your self the  winner…!

I don’t need to spin anything any more.

I am surrounded by winners. I am surrounded by heroes. I am surrounded by people so incredible…I become a little more fabulous each day. I am surrounded by superstars and I don’t take anything away from them to make me feel better about my life cos it’s pretty perfect … especially now that you’re not in it! (sorry couldn’t risk the childish dig!)

cuviybmwgaejimz

 

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Vote for…

On the eve of the most divisive election with all the mud slinging and name calling I realised one thing… that regardless of who you are and what place you have reached there’s always someone (or in most of our cases, more than a few people) who will HATE you. Yes, the capitalised BOLD— H-A-T-E.

So there’s a progression I’ve realised now- there are the critics… previously critics were unbiased individuals who gave their honest (not paid for) opinion and we’d all read, follow and listen to their recommendations, because it came from a place of passion and honesty.

Then with the internet, overnight everyone became a critic. Then there were the paid critics and those who honestly just wanted to be contrary and suddenly you didn’t know who or what to trust any more…

And the really angry critics they became the trolls… they used their hate of people/ movies/ race/ religion or just of life to bully, abuse and critique anything and everything….

And the truly angry trolls , they became the haters…vicious, mean, hurtful and not bothering about anyone or anything at all…spewing a path of destruction and anger….

And in the midst of all this hate… sensitive souls, teenagers and people with hearts were actually getting hurt- there were those taking their lives basis hurtful posts or trolls… There were kids hurting themselves, being shamed online and searching for outlets to release the hurt and pain , finding none and then becoming trolls themselves… a terrifying spiral of the worst of human  nature.

A few weeks ago, someone posted on her timeline “I want to kill myself.”- that post got 43 likes- WHAT?

No-one asked/ posted why?People didn’t reach out… they didn’t ask what was wrong… they LIKED IT!

I called her and found out that she’d had a truly miserable day and spoke to her till she was done venting… but I realised that in this extremely connected online community , with it’s very mean lean… I think the only way to keep your sanity is to just believe your perfect…

I am not going to be loved by everyone. I may not even be liked by some…. and online since you don’t know me at all, or may be you do- you might hate, comment, troll or just dislike me…

I can’t change how you feel.None of us can.

So in the midst of all the mudslinging and hate, I realised most of us have it easy…we’re not trolled relentlessly or hated with an unbridled undeserved passion.. but we may still get hurt by the silly comment or the backhanded statement made by a ‘friend’… forgot about it.

We’re perfect just the way we are… and if they can’t see it… there’s something wrong with them…!

While USA Votes Hilary or Trump…

I say Vote for yourself… Give yourself the benefit of the doubt and lets the critics , even those inside your head take a break for a day- You are perfect.

VOTE YOU!

vote_for_me

 

Changing my Perspective

When friends ask me why I keep working when I’m sick or have horrendous pain because of a Multiple Sclerosis triggered attack, I never had much of an answer, except that I’m a workaholic and a bit nuts… But then I thought about it a bit and I realised that when I was sick and unable to move I missed moving, working and living so much that I made a vow to myself that i was never going to let another day pass me by where I didn’t try and do everything, every single thing that I could do!

It’s all about perspective!

Think about it… when you were awoken too early… or just woke up too early in the morning; someone somewhere is never going to get the morning you just woke up to; someone somewhere is going to hope that they have another morning left; someone somewhere is going to wish someone they cared about actually woke up this morning!

When you have a bad day at work…Think about it- you HAVE work. Millions are jobless, on their last few rupees/ dollars, have mortgaged their homes, their lives , are ready to do anything just to have even a bad day at WORK, because they WANT to WORK!

A nagging wife wants you back home, that’s cause for annoyance except when you think of the many, many people out there wishing they’d find love, who’d trade their lives with yours in a heartbeat just to get rid of the loneliness…

And then there’s the terrible leg pain… and you have to think of the hundreds and thousands of amputees who have no legs….who’d give anything just to feel a cramp or a leg ache again!

A delayed contract, a painful break up, even a critical parent- it just means you have a job and may soon get a contract; you were with the wrong person, but you learnt how to love; someone believes you can be better than who you are today and they love you!

It’s all about perspective…!

Have a POSITIVELY great week ahead!

 

Treat her like a lady!

Stop wishing me ‘Happy Women’s Day!’ Don’t fill your offices with balloons or give me a free cookie with a cup of coffee! Don’t give me chocolates or roses. Don’t smile at me unnecessarily or create lunches to felicitate me!

Instead treat me as an equal. Treat me with respect. Pay me the same as you would a man for the same job. Do not doubt my commitment to work because I have a family and do not doubt my commitment to my family because I work. Don’t comment on me as if I were an object. You don’t own me . You never will. I own me. Listen to me. Talk to me. Hear me. Believe in me. Fight for me. Love me.

Don’t lust for me. Don’t abuse me. Don’t hurt me. Don’t demean me. Don’t laugh at my dreams. Don’t mock my ambition. Don’t think of me as weaker. Don’t lie to me.

I may not be your sister, your wife, your mother or related to you. But I still am a woman. I am the glue in a family. I am the strength in a home. I can bear your children and raise them with love and care. I create. I nurture. I give love. I give life. I give strength.

So don’t wish me ‘Happy Women’s Day-‘ treat me the way a woman should be treated- with care and love; with respect and awe. Treat me special every day, all the time because I give you the respect of being a man… give me the respect of being a lady!

 

A day in Amsterdam…!

Amsterdam was the last stop on our best Euro trip ever and we were exhausted! Traveling had been incredible and exciting but we knew Amsterdam would give us the much needed down time that one often feels one needs AFTER a holiday…like the holiday from the holiday!

We were right!

Both Aditya and I had visited Amsterdam before… but when we were kids. This was our first time here as a couple and we were excited!

From Paris to Amsterdam we took the Thallys. Fun, fast, fabulous and modern- this train was a dream! With fast speed internet connection on board, comfortable seats this bright and cheerful train put all of our other train journeys to shame! Travel in Europe- Use Thallys!

After a fabulous, invigorating morning because of a super train ride passing through some fabulous places that I made note of to visit we arrived in Amsterdam! The hotel we stayed at was a Starwood property – part of their Luxury Collection- Hotel Pulitzer.

The hotel comprises of 25 restored canal houses which makes it so incredibly unique with no two guest rooms being the same. Each has their own character and a distinctive and personal. The rooms are small and cosy. Our suite overlooked the canal and was very special because of the large windows which allowed us the luxury of sitting indoors in the rainy weather and watching the beautiful city glisten and glimmer as it bathed in the quick shower! It rains in Amsterdam – it rained all 3 days while we were there. The rains are usually quick and windy but if you’re outside you can feel quite bitterly cold!

Amsterdam is a glorious city. Walk it and you can stop in the many small pathways and find the most amazing shops, the most vibrant of cafes and the most interesting of boutiques. The first morning was spent walking over bridges and stopping at cafes and finding this small , incredible cafe with the best fries ever and lingering over cups of coffee- the perfect unwind!

The mode of transportation is trams or in the smaller roads- bicycles or walking. But know that riding a bicycle in Amsterdam has lots of rules attached and bicycle riders are quite fierce and fast and can give you quite a scare making walking an often safer mode of transportation!

Later in the afternoon it was off to the centre of the city and for a shopping experience like none other. Small boutiques bordered large expensive stores and local cafes stood side by side to fast food chains. Something for everyone and colours everywhere!

The Coffeeshops in Amsterdam are easy to spot… In its spelling itself there is no space between coffee and shop and it is not called a cafe. They serve cannabis and hash brownies among usual coffees and soft drinks and snacks that you’d get at another cafe. I wandered into these more for curiosity’s sake and was pleasantly surprised to see the owner cum server totally knowledgeable and very cautious about what he was selling and even more so how much he was selling. He enquired carefully whether it was your first time and talked you through the entire range of products he had and didn’t push any when I chickened out and ordered a coke and chips instead and focussed on what seemed like a very stoned dog sitting with his master in the coffeeshop!

Anne Frank’s Home is an absolute MUST DO! I was never an ardent fan of the book. I had read it, enjoyed it, but never been really been overly interested in her life. I guess, being born in a different era made what happened seem so unreal, so frightening and a bit unreal to me. Our hotel was a building away from the Anne Frank Home and I decided I wanted to see it. Book tickets online as they only allow a few at a time and the lines outside the house otherwise are very long and to shiver in the rains is not appealing at all! We booked tickets and went in. Suddenly we were transported to an era gone by. With black and white videos, handwritten diary pages and even walls with height marks as to how tall she’d grown- suddenly her life became all to real. Her story told so perfectly and simply through simple diary entries came alive in the small , cramped rooms and the creaky flooring where she’d spent her life hidden in fear. We read about her arrest, saw the records , heard her father speak about her and I wept. Like the tens of others who had walked in with us, this experience became personal, became real and it stopped being about a book. It became about a life- a life lost too early. This was undoubtedly the most beautiful and touching experience that this trip offered me and I was glad I made time to do something that would offer me such a personal experience.

After all the tears I went back to our room for a nice hot cappuccino and we ended up at a fabulous local restaurant which was filled to the brim. With tapas and wine this became the perfect end to a perfect day!

Best Times To Travel-:  June through to October ! But it does get chilly at night and be prepared for rain!

Price Factor-:  $300- $500 a night and do try the Canal House Hotels . They are definitely an experience!

WILL GO BACK…STAY LONGER…SOON!

Play On ( dedicated to all those I’ve ever worked with on stage and all those who love theatre!)

 

I have been doing professional theatre ever since I was 14 years old. Theatre has given me a home, given me a voice, given me confidence and even found me a husband!

‘Sound of Music,’ taught me to sing and I have been singing ever since. My taste in music is questionable…but nonetheless I’ll sing it for you!

The Verdict,’ is the first play Aditya and I produced. I remember booking all the halls for ‘The Verdict’ without having a single sponsor and then 4 days before we opened; Sponsors came pouring inand suddenly despite us having booked halls for 10 shows we were both suddenly on the phone 24×7 trying to find more free dates at halls! Theatre gave me the confidence to dream!

When we produced ‘The Graduate,’ I learnt I could teach new actors.All my theatre experience could help others and I loved it! Theatre gave me a sense of pride!

When I started ‘Imps’ no one in India had ever heard of Improvisational theatre. I made people realise that theatre was fun and most of the audiences we had had never been to a theatrebefore! Most of the actors hadn’t either! Theatre helped me meet new people!

With ‘My Way,’ I taught new writers how to write and helped new directors put up their first show! Some of them have become very talented directors today and I am proud!

In the ‘Wizard of Oz,’ with my pet puppy Cookie on stage to hold on to ,I learnt to believe in myself again! After my single attack of Multiple Sclerosis (ADEM), I was a little under confident in the spotlight. ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ had that spot light shining on me for hours. I faced my illness head on and won!

‘Starring You and Me!’ helped realise a cherished dream of acting opposite Aditya, my husband, rather than just directing him! I still remember the premiere night’s standing ovation! After all these years on stage…I still wept!

‘A Personal War- Stories of the Mumbai Terror Attacks,’ has won me awards the world over! I won ‘Best Fringe Show’ for a Free Showperformed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival; ‘Best Director’ at the New York International Fringe Festival and ‘ Best Producer,’ ‘Best Director’, ‘Best Writer’ and ‘Best Performer’ most recently at the Sydney Fringe Festival. But here I learnt that I am the most thorough trip planner, the worst navigator and one of the best producers’ a team could hope for. We exhausted ourselves in performance but as a team we’re family! I made that happen!

With ‘Love Bytes,’ I learnt that underneath my tough exterior , I have a funny side. I loved making fun of myself and others and the audience seemed to love it too!

And with the new show ‘FourPlay’ I have enjoyed the comedy even more. I am taking risks on actors. I am enjoying myself more directing. This is a show I have written and over all these years with my new found confidence as a writer, comic and a director -I am pulling out all the stops!

I love theatre because every time I think I know myself and all that I am capable of; a new show reveals a side of me that I never knew I had.

Theatre has taught me that I am obsessive compulsive, thoughtful, irritable, unpredictable, stubborn, childish, mature and young! It has shown me that even during my best scripted plays that sometimes the best show isn’t the premiere show; it’s what you do every day at rehearsal!