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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

HOW ABOUT GIVING NEW YEAR GIFTS TO MYSELF?




HAPPY NEW YEAR- 2015



Y IS FOR NEW YEAR GIFTS

Finally, it’s time to bid adieu to 2014 and extend our warmest wishes, and open armed welcome to 2015. Hope that the New Year would be harbinger of peace, joy and prosperity for all of us as global citizens. It’s also the right time, I suppose, to reflect and rethink about life in the year gone by, and learn lessons for future, to make life more fulfilling, creative and meaningful.

All along, I’d been spending a lot of energy, time and care in managing all types of presents for others, in my family and social set up.  This time, interestingly, I’m preparing to give myself some gifts and make a new beginning in a mindful way. I plan to give single-minded attention to promises, which I make to myself. It means convincing myself, that, come what may, I ought to follow, what I decide, with zeal and devotion. That is tough, indeed and requires time management and steely determination.

At this point, foggy ideas and doubts intrude the mind scape. Rueful questions such as: when would, we women, start giving precedence to what we need to do for ourselves over  unending chores? Or, are we just like our mothers, who, kind souls kept toiling, without even a nod of appreciation from children or spouse. Just because, their self-sacrificing nature, took upon themselves the backbreaking duties, as if ordained from above. And we took them for granted.

These introspective incursions are a part of my conversation with my inner self these days. In the New Year, I want to project a new me with lots of confidence and self-esteem. I’m rubbing it on my subconscious lest I should forget the promises and be mired in the self-defeating rut again. Of my own making of course!

Enough of the prologue friends, and let me talk about those newly structured gifts for self-improvement:

1. A regular exercise regimen: I need it more than ever now, if I wish to be self-reliant and remain active in body and mind in the coming years. Exercise is more than a tonic.  It energizes you, helps your cardiovascular system to work more efficiently, makes you more productive and boosts your spirits.

2. To be self-compassionate: Alternatively, to be less harsh on myself. We indulge in self-criticizing on many counts like when we fall short of our own expectations. We should learn to let go some times. Over exerting and getting stressed, over non-issues need to be given a go by. It entails learning the art of abandonment to ease the daily bumps of life.

3.To smile at my reflection in the mirror: That ironically will give me some me time to laugh at myself and some ‘do me good’ resolves. Like, time to take more care of myself to go on living a fruitful life, till Almighty's summons!

4. To be more social: I can’t help not to be choosy about my social contacts, because of the activities and interests I pursue. I’m sort of, one of a kind and hardly anybody to share what i do. However, to be acquainted with people in one’s community is also part of a healthy camaraderie.
  
5. To be more generous and kinder to others: It requires many self-reminders at the subconscious level to practice this in a system, where indifference and lies have become the rule rather than the exception. Sadly, you remain at the receiving end of people, you get services from even after  paying them handsomely.

6. Try to forgive those who in spite of doing hurtful wrongs, are too vain, small minded and mean to apologize.
  
7. Last but not the least, to spread love and goodwill and continue  to pursue my passions for friendly sharing with my cyber buddies and for sheer creative pleasure!

Friends, welcome here, with best wishes for 2015! :-) 
                                    
linked to ABC Wednesday

Monday, December 29, 2014

VALLEY VIEW


                                                                                                                                   OUR WORLD



This is a shot showing, a narrow  smooth valley, dotted with fields, dwelling units and sundry vegetation in village 'Basal' in Himachal Pradesh, India, amidst picturesque Shivalik hills. Captured the scene during this summer.

I  got this expansive view from the balcony of a friend's flat situated on the second storey of the block  of flats. The rows of small cane sticks embedded in the soil is meant to support  the growing tomato plants. Tomatoes together with bell peppers are the main cash crops of the region.

Friends,welcome here as always!                                image-in-ing    
 
 OUTDOOR WEDNESDAY

Sunday, December 28, 2014

SALE GIMMICKS



MAGPIE TALE-8
image via Magpie Tale

Friends, this is what came to my mind spontaneously, when i saw the picture prompt.  Mine can be called a narrative or a tale of some kind of behavioral pattern, in the face of a rampantly growing aspect of market economy.

 Being receptive to 'sale mania' is widespread globally. In fact, many of us are always eager to jump on the band wagon, when such sales are announced through hoardings, coupons, print and visual media ads. It is  nothing new, though. It had been there all along, cleverly structured and successfully pursued. For instance, I remember many times, during the process of buying clothes, the shopkeeper would invariably intervene by saying," I'm offering you such good stuff at old rates Ma'am", and pretended to bring the new list of pricing. That refrain was of course, a ploy to force you to make a quick and favorable decision. And it generally worked.

The only difference is that, the modern day sale gimmicks are more brazen, with no holds barred wooing of the prospective customers.

Online selling is the new Mantra, which has caught the attention of the  computer/mobile savvy youth today. The success of online sale of almost all consumer goods  is based on a carefully crafted sale's pitch. For example, the urge to buy is whetted manifold by the call of  best deals at the lowest prices for two days, one week or from 9 in the morning to sometime in the evening. Consequently, there is no time to think, but to act at express speed. 

The online trading companies are having a runaway success, because of growing consumerism. So much so, that  one such company- Flipkart, had its system crashed in the recent past, because of unexpected  heavy demand to one of its low offerings, which obviously, they failed to meet. Companies doing E-trading in consumer goods are multiplying and their cash registers are swelling by the day. The people managing these companies are well educated, smart and great psychologists. They work on human instinct through well tried formula of  offering 40% 50% or more, off, on MRP.  

The boom in disposable incomes is giving fillip to such practices. This apart, the greed to own the goods, which had been stared at, with longing previously in show room windows, have suddenly come within the reach of the burgeoning middle class. This at least is, what is happening in India right now. Though in the west the  craze for 'on sale' goods has been  going on for decades.

Aldous Huxley's grave predictions about encouraging the culture of over spending to fuel growth and employment, happening in the west is spreading globally. In his novel "THE BRAVE NEW WORLD" the slogan, "Ending is better than mending" is rubbed  in, early on, to the inhabitants of that nightmarish utopia  through conditioning. It  is  simple but subtle message that  promotes throw away culture.

Interestingly, it is the fair sex, which is notorious for such buying sprees. The ad campaigns are widely targeted at them via curvy and comely models. Though i think the trend is catching up slowly but surely among men as well.
The downside of this craze is: one ends up buying things, which one doesn't need at the moment but may need at some perceived  undefined future time. The unopened packages keep piling up in your basement or under the beds for lack of space. In your hectic lifestyle, you soon forget  them and are ready to embark on the next sales season.

PS. I'm not considering here, pink color's association with the magic spell of romance! 

Friends,welcome here as always!     linked to                                                          TWO SHOES TUESDAY                                                                 


Saturday, December 27, 2014

THIS WEEK'S CRITTERS

             CAMERA CRITTERS

                                                           
Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers


Since we're experiencing biting cold here these days, going out is a big No. I tried to capture birds, if by chance they appeared some where in my neighborhood. Luckily in the afternoon the sun wriggled out of the hazy cover and the blessed state of mild sun shine shared its sweet and precious warmth with us. And the birds too presented themselves to enjoy the change in the weather. 





Just after lunch today, I came out with the camera ready in my hand to click at the first opportunity. I saw this pair of  pigeons, one with an anxious expression with neck slightly raised and the other with an overly calm demeanor on my neighbor's gate pillar and captured them thus!  BELOW is a tiny bird sitting cozily on the roof of an upper room of another neighbor's house.

 




Friends, welcome here as always!







Thursday, December 25, 2014

SKY WATCH FRIDAY



MERGER OF SKY, SNOW AND AUTUMN IN ONE FRAME




Going out in extreme cold weather conditions, prevailing in the whole of North India, is certainly not advisable. My forays into the 'Kodak Moments' was nil, to say the least.

 So I took recourse to the small treasure of my archives.

This one is a part of the series of pictures I took of the first snowfall of the season in Cincinnati USA during mid November of 2013!  I's in the US at that time. I've already shared some of them with you!

Friends,welcome here as always!!!

SHARING VIDEO CLIP OF PHOTOS 2014

video




THANKS GOOGLE PLUS FOR PREPARING THIS VIDEO CLIP!!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

THURSDAY CHALLENGE



  THIS WEEK'S  THEME IS:

  "MY FAVOURITE PHOTO" 
                                             
THIS ONE IS ONE OF  MY FAVORITE PHOTOS.
  

Trees standing as sentinels, as if to safeguard the interests of God's creation! The  freshness and green ambiance of nature and afternoon shadows on the road, signify the wonders and blessings of our lives, which we're celebrating on this sacred day of Christmas!!!


On this precious day, I wish to thank all my friends, who have stood be me, supported and encouraged me in pursuance of my passion!

Friends,many many thanks and welcome here!

NEEM TREES LINING THE ENTRY ROAD

Outdoor Wednesday

CHRISTMAS GREETINGS



X is for Xmas

WHAT IS CHRISTMAS?

CHRISTMAS IS TENDERNESS FOR THE PAST, COURAGE FOR THE PRESENT, HOPE FOR THE FUTURE. IT IS A FERVENT WISH THAT EVERY CUP MAY OVERFLOW WITH BLESSINGS RICH AND ETERNAL, AND THAT EVERY PATH MAY LEAD TO PEACE.                          AGNES M PAHRO



Source: Sacred space       THE TIMES OF INDIA

Christmas spirit is akin to elevated consciousness, which pervades the hearts of the true believers. This awareness resurrects the sleeping realization of the eternal message   of Christ. And that embodies love, goodwill and compassion for one’s fellow beings and being kind , generous, charitable and forgiving. It is about opening our hearts for the good of all living beings

This in a way is the essence of His spiritual wisdom! May it lit our paths for always!


Charles Dickens
I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.  

Image courtesy: Google
                                                       
Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers
 Friends, Welcome here!


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

OUR WORLD




The fresh snow, shines in the early morning sun light. The puffs of pure white snow on the vase and the bush near by, adds  to the Christmas  spirit. Shot at Cincinnati USA in winter of 2013.

 Hearty greetings to all on the festive season!!! 

linked to:


OUR WORLD TUESDAY             IMAGE-IN -ING




Friends,welcome here as always!!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

COMING HOME FOR CHRISTMAS


FROM SOURCE
  
The morning was MISTY but the memories of the his childhood days came ALIVE so vividly as he sat at the window seat of the train, which was chugging on relentlessly to its destination.

There were obvious signs of  a SNOW fall that evening; however, he had a GLIMMER of hope, though, that his ardent wish to reach home before that would be fulfilled.

The reverie was broken, as the train stopped to a cacophony of noises and he realized  with a vague air of joyful expectancy that finally he was heading  home for Christmas.

Next he was  only conscious of the SPARKLE of the decor, the hugs and kisses, and the GLARING light of the fire place  suffused with the festive spirit!


 LINKED TO


FIVE SENTENCE FICTION   THREE WORD WEDNESDAY           TWO SHOES TUESDAY 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

CAMERA CRITTERS

SATURDAY CRITTERS         CAMERA CRITTERS





It is extremely cold here these days. To cap it all, fog envelops the outside till mid day. Sun seems to be acting pricey. It fails to break the misty cover. Humidity levels have gone up. Already missing the bright sunny days of a week ago.
 Both these pictures are just tiny silhouettes  on electric distribution lines. First one is that of a crow with a dry chunk of bread and the other is that of a type of tiny sparrow.


Friends,welcome here as always!




Thursday, December 18, 2014

RISING SUN RADIATES


SKY WATCH FRIDAY




I remain fascinated by the glory of the sun in all its phases. So can a wannabe photographer like me( if i dare to use this epithet) just ignore the manifestation of this unique entity, the gift of the supreme power who makes the universe go by. Without any apparent reason on a particular day, you simply wish to imprison the WONDER  in your camera!

Here the rising sun at the start of its daily journey!

Friends, welcome here as always!


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

THURSDAY CHALLENGE

THIS WEEK'S THEME IS:

"MY FAVOURITE PHOTO"

  SUN RISE BEHIND THE SHIVALIK HILLS.              THIS ONE I PRIZE!



During the summer I stayed in the midst of Shiwalik hills for a few months. That gave me an opportunity to capture  nature in the peak of its beauty, during spring. Most of the pictures I've shared on my blog. 

The picture above is one of my favorite shots. I clicked it at KUMARHATTI (SOLAN) at about 8'clock in the morning from my balcony.

Friends, welcome here as always!

WINTER IN ITS SNOWY ATTIRE


 SNOW'S SPLENDOR



THIS IS TAKEN FROM THE FRONT OF THE HOUSE. STREAKS OF SUNSHINE HERE AND THERE.
 PLANTS DOTTED WITH PUFFS OF SNOW.
OPEN SPACES IN THE BACK OF THE HOUSES CLOTHED IN SPLENDID WHITE, AMIDST DAZZLING WIDE STRANDS OF SUNSHINE.


These shots are from my archives. They show the aftermath of the  first snowfall of the season  in Cincinnati, USA in November, 2013. I eagerly went out to feast my eyes on the beautiful spectacle of the sheets of snow decorating the side walks, grassy lawns, vacant lots and vegetation all around. It was an opportunity, I's looking forward to. Immediately I ran inside to bring the camera and captured nature's marvels in a few clicks. They're my prized pictures.



ABC Wednesday W is for winter    Outdoor Wednesday


Wordless Wednesday-65









FRIENDS, welcome here as always!


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

OUR WORLD


AN OPEN AIR SATURDAY MARKET








The above scene is part of a Saturday open air super market so to say,  held on a large ground, which is easily accessible to residents of many localities around. On one of its side , vegetables stalls, hand carts and tractor trolleys are lined, brimming with fresh produce. In another corner fruit sellers spread their wares mostly on hand carts.

Then their are rows and rows of cooking pans and pots, plastic buckets, mugs  trash bins, spoon holders and a lot more stuff.  

In fact i wanted to share with you wares displayed in this corner of the market. Here is the balloon seller who has hung multicolored balloons on the branch of the tree, nearby popcorn is being  roasted on kerosene stoves and sold hot to  young and old alike.

Here in the middle there is a cycle which is a poor man's show room. On the rear wheel of the cycle, a hard card board sheet is strategically placed  with knickknacks  arranged on it.  One can buy ribbons, laces, scissors, key rings knives, hair pins  and a host of other things. This is  another specimen of our world, no doubt!  
                                               Our WorldTuesday       image-in -ing


Friends,welcome here as always!

Monday, December 15, 2014

LOVE HAS ITS OWN WAYS



MAGPIE TALE- 7                TWO SHOES TUESDAY

Photograph by Robert Doisneau

Hazy, winter morning in  London, England, perhaps, probably  of  Victorian era, with two earlier models of Ford cars parked  casually behind. The scenario is somewhat weird. The two  faces other than that of the couple wear a slightly anxious expression.

The above action appears to be incongruous  in the prevailing atmosphere. Though in all probability, it was so spontaneous that no body seemed to be unduly attracted to the scene. Even the man sitting in the chair is unmoved and composed at least so his posture reads like, though it is difficult to gauge much from his back. The woman partly visible behind the man is least curious.

On the basis of these faint cues if one can call them cues, let us spin a mini tale.

Assuming that the two are the members of the star cast group, which is rehearsing  a popular play to be staged shortly in 'The Gaiety', a famous  London  theater. The two lead players had a tough time to come up to the expectations of the new director who was to establish his credentials with this offering. The play being a social satire was expected to be watched, not only by middle class but also by the members of the aristocracy.

There was a lot of tension and temper flareups. The lead couple in the course of protracted period of rehearsals, which went up to mid night often, perhaps, unknowingly fell in love with each other. The mysterious chemistry between them went unnoticed. So absorbed in perfecting their dialogue delivery, diction and  mannerisms were they that they had no chance of exchanging a private word in the presence of the  crew and the rest of the cast. On this  much deserved day off and at the first opportunity, the man drew the woman in his arms with a passionate kiss. What happened next?

Keep guessing !!!

Friends, welcome here as always!