September 28, 2011


I am a planner. I plan parties, get-togethers, gifts and just about everything and put in a lot of energy and time into it. I like doing that. I liked planning and preparing for the arangetram, the job change, the city change...the life change. But sometimes, I feel like I should take a break and just experience life the way it is. Without the looking ahead and the constant churning to shape the future course of events.

K often points out that even before he has completed a chore, I am on to the next one, planning what needs to be completed next. And he is right. I am uncomfortable being complacent. I understand complacency is different from being at peace and I can do the latter without bringing in stagnation in my life. But, I find it hard to draw a line between the two. Sometimes, I have to consciously tell myself to enjoy this moment, this point in space that I am at, that I seemingly architected but probably had more to do with powers higher than me and words difficult to comprehend like destiny and the universe. But, I like to think I had something to do with it because it makes me feel a little bit more secure in this world of uncertainties.

I have no idea what tomorrow will bring but I can pretend to choreograph a part of it to my liking because well, that is all I can do. If that pretense of control leaves my hand, then I am vulnerable and I don't necessarily want that realization dawning bright and clear on me -- as long as it's somewhere in the back of my mind, that's fine and I can continue to plan and architect my life. In little ways that are important to me. Now, if only I can add the taking-a-few-minutes-to-smell-the-flowers bit...

September 19, 2011

Exploring Atlanta -- Puppets!

I should probably title this post, "Exploring Alpharetta" but I know there is much more scope if we catch the train to Atlanta :) Yesterday, we went to a puppet show, "The Ugly Duckling" at The Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta. I wondered if r would have the patience to sit through the show and was surprised that she did. To my relief, even before we entered the theater, I found a lot of parents with squirming toddlers and knew I had reached the right place. The show was bright and loud (in a nice way) and they had a really nice stage setting with musical instruments built into the stage itself. The puppetry form was "Overt puppetry" where we can actually see the puppeteers manipulating the puppets. The lighting and sound systems in the theater are pretty sophisticated due to which they could pull off a stunt where the puppeteer blew a firefly (like light) from her hand and they filled up the entire ceiling (tiny lights that were supposed to be fireflies) -- that was magical for the kids (and to some of us)!

The puppet we made
The last time, we took the train to Atlanta (Marta) to the Children's museum and as a result couldn't really pick a restaurant of our choice to eat, which made some of us (yes, that would be me) cranky (I had to eat cold veggie burger in Atlanta. I mean, come on! I am in Atltanta, I should be able to find a desi snack place with hot snacks)! And so this time, we were planned. After the puppet show, we ate alu sandwiches with hot sauce which k had meticulously packed and I even packed coconut water in case I got tired (you can never tell with my thyroid gland)! Then we went to Chattahoochee national park by the river and walked about 1/4th of the trail (just a few minutes actually) before I started feeling tired. So, we just sat by the river sand and let Rads play with simba and her ugly duckling (The puppetry center had a small workshop where we could make ugly duckling puppets with the kids -- an awesome idea! r loved it!) puppet.

Glad I can actually go to a show and actually take r with me -- low stress deal! If you are in Atlanta, drop me a line and let me know what kid-friendly places you like or even better, if you are in Alpharetta, just drop by home :p

September 15, 2011

On moving and moving on...

This post has been a long time coming but glad to write now about it. The past couple of months have been eventful -- quitting IBM, preparing for interviews, arangetram, moving to Alpharetta (or should I say Alphapet? So many desis here, it could be Alwarpet ;) and leaving Lex and Lex, I guess, is the focus of this post now. The rest will find their way to this space sooner or later!

It's true that I was ready and I do mean, really ready to leave Lex after 11 years of making it my home. There were a multitude of reasons for my wanting to leave Lex but having said that, there are a number of reasons why Lex is, to reuse an overused adjective, pretty awesome! It's been a few weeks here and I still haven't found a library as attractive and close to home, or a Kroger that's 2 mins away! And I truly miss Joseph Beth, our defacto hang out place for the past several years now.

But a place is after all a place and it's the people really that matter. And people are what I miss most about Lex. It's not like I dropped by my friends' homes every other day but weekends usually found us in a friend's home or them in our home and it was...good, familiar, home. Even if some weeks all I did was talk to them on the phone, it was knowing that people who knew me for my quirks and craziness(es) were nearby should I need to see them. The wise folks online tell me it takes anywhere between a year to two years to call a place your home, sometimes never. A year seems far away now. I asked k if we should call a friend's contact here, you know, just to make new friends and he said, "It should just happen else it's artificial" :p

So weekends here find us in the mall (there is a carousal in the mall and a train, a real train for kids!) or Hotbreads (paav bhaji and veggie-puffs) or India plaza (yes, they have the latest Tamil movies) or in one of the umpteen Indian restaurants here, all of which are a stone's throw away. Fill friends in on this equation and we are set for life.


It is harder to reach out to people and make friends as we grow older and for desis here with siblings back in India, that becomes a necessity. Friends are our family here, right? And with work being more challenging (and fun -- which translates to time consuming because you spend more time working for two solid reasons now!), I wonder when the whole forming-a-community here will work out. The moving is easy (k would disagree since he did all the work). It's the moving on that's harder. Perhaps, like k says, it will happen one day, naturally and without any special effort on my part. Who knows? Meanwhile, a glimpse of Alphapet :)

Need I say more?


Really neat restaurant where k and I had our rare couple-lunch-- Never enough thyme.

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