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Besides death, diseases and flying on aeroplanes, my biggest fear nowadays is “Arranged Marriages”.

My short trip to my hometown brought me face-to-face with this. A cousin, who’s just a little older than me, is all set to get married. MARRIED!!!! She was all happy and gay(no! not that gay…she’s very much straight !) and SINGLE a week prior to this but now she’s getting married ! Sheesh !

Ok, I can understand her getting married. She’s at the right age and all ( According to general consensus). But her’s is a typical arranged marriage. Her details/photograph has been circulating in the ‘market’. One fine day aunty gets a call enquiring about her. Next day horoscopes are exchanged. It’s a match ! Few days later the guy’s family comes to see her. Boy and girl get some quality time to talk and get to know each other better, the same day, with parents and other family members around! The quality time is not even made proper use of !!!

Few days later, another phone call…. The boy’s family liked the girl. The boy has given his consent. Aunt talks to cousin. And its FIXED !!!

And the best/worst part…SHE DOESN’T EVEN REMEMBER HIS FACE !!!!!!!!!!

How scary is that!!!! I can’t imagine myself doing something like this. I mean…like…HOW?????? And the worst part is, this is what is expected off me. I was talking to my cousin about all this. She was happily narrating the whole story and I kept throwing a hundred questions at her like…

  1. You don’t even remember his face….and your ok with it?? :O
  2. So, you’re not even going to get to meet him or at least speak to each other before the engagement?
  3. You don’t even know what kind of guy he is? What he’s into?
  4. He’s a software engineer…work’s for a reputed company….sources say he’s a good guy with a clean slate….he’s from a good family….IS THAT ENOUGH?

Through out this conversation my mother kept nudging and shush-ing me. Seemed like she was trying to tell me…. “What more do you expect? This is how life is around here. This is what is expected out of all of us. If you don’t go by these rules….you’re DOOMED!!!”

I can’t do this!! I can’t imagine spending the rest of my life with someone I don’t even know. Someone I might not even get along with.

I’d be ok with this whole thing if I would get some more time to get to know the person, get some time to decide. But all the talking and bonding happens only after the engagement!!!! Like that’s of any help. It’s not like the engagement can be broken. And even if it comes down to that..the kind of humiliation that one’s family has to go through, I’d rather not think about that. By the time you are engaged the whole world would know about it. It’s almost like you’re already married!

Ahhhhh! If only there was a fool-proof way to deal with all this.

Oh and did I tell you, technically, I’m next in line !!! NEXT IN LINE!!!

I’m soooo Doomed !

  • Lotsa daddy-daughter bonding. (Got a little story to share which I shall do once I get back ! )
  • Cute dentist and 4 missing teeth !
  • Best-est-est-est friend ever leaving for good 😦
  • Went book shoppin with BFF. Got FOUR books for Rs. 355 !! “Three Men in a Boat” by Jerome K Jerome, “The curious incident of the dog in the night-time” by mark haddon, “Love and Marriage” by Bill Cosby and “The Notebook” by Nicholas Sparks.( click on images for more details on the books ! )

         Three Men In A Boat      the curious incident of the dog in the night-time    Love and Marriage   The Notebook

 I’m a happy person! And loadsa BFF bonding and bitching happened! Good times!

  • Decided to confront friend mentioned in an old post . Ya, I know…finally !
  • Off to Ende Keralam tomorrow ! Leaving yall with a small video. It’s the Asianet theme song “Shyama sundara kera kedara bhoomi” by A R Rahman (which I just learnt few minutes back ! And I’d be the wrong person to ask to translate that ! ). Totally love it. Butttt the entire song is not there 😦 . Anyways, Enjoy ! Back in a weeks time !

Mumbai schools ban girl-boy touch

Students keeping a distance from each other !

Mumbai:They may be co-educational schools in metropolitan Mumbai, but are still insisting drawing on a line that divides the boys from the girls.

Two schools in Mumbai issued notices this week asking girls and boys studying there not to touch or hug members of the opposite sex.

What has this country come to !! Why bother having co-ed schools at all ?!?!

I think majority of the crimes (eve-teasing, rapes, etc) that happen are due to one reason only – Lack of proper boy-girl interaction and education and awareness about what makes them different from each other.

School authorities say the rule will “discipline” students, who are easily exposed to and influenced by violence and vulgarity on TV and other media.

I don’t really understand why we need to have all boys or all girls school. Would it help the child in anyway? I don’t think so. Will scrutinizing each and every move made by students help in anyway? Would there have been a need if these kids were given personal growth and sex seducation classes at the right age at school and at home ?

“You know, they are in school as of now. Un logo ko abhi se hum agar in batoon ki soth de de, toh woh kahan par jake end hoga that’s beyond our imagination, (They are in school now. If we start ignoring these things, you just can’t imagine where it will lead them to),” Richa Bhatia, whose children go to one of these schools, says.

Are schools and even the parents being prudish? Definitely YES !

“India, the land of cultural diversities,
both aesthetically pleasing and
intellectually nurturing.
Underneath this diversity lies the continuity of
Indian civilization and social structure.
Soorya is a catalogue of everything Indian.
Dances, Music, Literature, Theatre,
Cinema and Tradition.”

(Video courtesy gspravi)

That was a Promo video for the Soorya India Festival.( I get goose-bumps every-time I watch that)

Founded by Nataraja Krishnamoorthy(a.k.a Soorya Krishnamoorthy), Soorya is a non-profit, non-commercial voluntary organization that aims at achieving Intergration through Culture.

Soorya has brought various kinds of programs involving different forms of dance, ranging from Kathak to Kuchipudi and musical instruments like the violin and the saxophone. Jugalbandis, dance dramas and play have been highlights of Soorya programs.

Over the past couple of years I’ve had to miss quite a few of these programs, mostly because I wasn’t around much. But, I have to say, I’ve witnessed performances from the finest artists in India, only, thanks to Soorya. I got to watch Ayaan and Amaan Ali Bangash play the sarod.

Ayaan & Amaan

Bharathnatyam recitals by the Dhananjayans duo.

Dhananjayan & Shanta

And kathak performance by Rajendra Gangani, to name a few of my favorites. One of the best things about going for a Soorya program is that usually audience consists of people who really appreciate these art forms. Invites to these programs specifically mention that children below the age of 10years are not allowed (arrangements are made for kids outside if required). Since its a non-profit organization one must realise that the artists that perform are not paid any amount for these performances. What they do not get in cash, they get in kind, from the audience. Except the on-going applause and the hoos-haas of appreciations, there is usually pin drop silence during performances.

Today I got to go for yet another Soorya program. The first half of the program was a jugalbandi of the saxophone (by Kadri Gopalnath), thakil (by Karunamurthy) and violin(Kanyakumari).  Each instrument complementing the other, it was a thorough treat for the ears. But I think I would have enjoyed it more if I knew more about the various ragas and talas.

This was followed by a dance ensemble in Odissi, one of the Meera Dasmost graceful dance forms, by Meera Das and Group. They started off with a small composition on Soorya (the Sun). Then they went on to do a piece depicting the various poses of goddesses (playing different musical instruments like the veena, mridangam, flute,etc) that one sees in temples. This was followed by Dashavatar( the 10 avatars of Lord Vishnu). And finally, Moksha (salvation), depecting the dancers trying to attain Moksha through their dance.

I must say these programs are worth every bit of one’s time. Soorya has its chapters in most parts of Europe, the Middle-east and South-east Asia. Given a chance, and if you are interested, this is something you should not miss out on !