Friday, April 30, 2010

The House hunt !!!

Ufff... The whole week was quiet hectic for me. Ask me why. We received a mail from our apartment management reminding us that our apartment lease is ending in a couple of months and we had to decide on either extending the lease or vacating the apartment. And that if we choose to vacate we'll have to give them a 60 day notice so that they'll start advertising for the apartment and other stuff. And it looked like our rents are increased if we choose to extend. And we had only four days left before we finally decide on this. So we thought we'll look for options outside. And the house hunting job fell on me. So the first thing I do, after packing B (my hubby) to work, is to log into all the apartment rental sites and start my search. I had to keep in mind the rent, the reviews about the community, the amenities that are available, easy access to all transits, this, that, foo, faa.... And finally listed down some apartments that we thought will be comfortable for us. And I started taking apartment tours on each of them. Some days I had to check out more that three apartments, come back home note down the things like rent, available facilities, hidden charges etc., in an excel sheet and discuss it with B at the end of the day. After all this, we somehow weren't satisfied with the apartments that I checked. And the D-Day came. Today we had to tell the management about our decision. It was definitely tough to move out of an apartment that we enjoyed staying so long. We had everything we needed. It was a wonderful community. We had nothing to complain about so far. Right from library to grocery to shopping malls, everything is at walkable distance. Moreover I had developed an intimate bond with my desi neighbor. And so we finally decided to extend the lease in our same apartment, even though we had to compromise on the hiked rent. So I went down to the leasing office to tell our decision. Before that we wanted to ask if there are any other apartments that is currently vacant for us to move in. And it so happened that, there was one vacant on the same building but a few floor high above. And the best part is, it comes with more space and less rent. Hoz that :) I was like yaayyyyy !!! And yes, we obviously opted to move into that apartment. After all this house hunting we ended up moving into an apartment in the very same building. But I totally have nothing to regret. This whole house search was a new experience for me and definitely worth it. I got to know what exactly property mangers do every other day and understood the whole rent manipulation that is being done when an apartment is vacant. Baaahhhh. Whatever, we finally found a house and we definitely like it :)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Women's dignity really saved by a Burqua Ban?

I hope most of you must have known about the Burqua ban in Belgium. Belgium claims to be the first European country to enforce this ban to wear over face coverings in public places, with exceptions like motorcyclists. The main intention is to target Muslim women who wear this traditional garb. The committee says that they cannot allow someone to claim the right to see others without being seen, and that wearing Burqua doesn't seem compatible with an open, liberal, tolerant society. Similar measures are taken in France also. The French president boasts that wearing Burqua is contradicting to the dignity of Women. And he says the only answer to this is to ban it. But statistics show that there are over 5,00,000 muslim women living in Belgium. But not all of them wear Burquas. Some really choose to wear it in order to express their religious faith. A month ago when France was seriously debating on this issue, there were so many blogs and articles popping up on this concern. I found that so many comments from Muslim women. They really wear the Burqua or the Hijab, only because they choose to wear it. Nobody forces them to do so. At least here in the west, nobody does, they say. I really don't get the point of guarding the dignity of women by banning the Burqua. I don't even see security issues here. When Muslim women go for a security check they very well co-operate and reveal their identity. So where is this getting to? When women don't get to choose what they wear, where is the whole idea of freedom and liberalism? And for heaven's sake, seven days jail for wearing a burqua?? God save this world !!!

 Image Courtesy

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Here I come...Zoooommmmmm!!!

Driving in the US was so easy when compared to India. No auto-rickshaws, no bicyclists and there are lanes everywhere and people stick to the rules and speed limits. So literally there is no need to panic while driving. Only thing was the 'Keep-right' rule that we had to follow here unlike India, where we keep left. But that wasn't so bad too. I took a couple of drives with my hubby and that was it. I was comfortable driving here. Today I had to take my road test to get my driving license. We planned to start early from home so that we can be in line soon and take the test soon. And we started as planned. And we went to the DMV office on time. I was so confident about the test.  They called me to verify my documents. I had everything pucca except my car's registration document. We had to carry the originals but we just had a photocopy. They said they will not accept the photocopy. We had another friend taking his road test with me. But he too dint have proper documents. Thats it. The whole thing got messed up. Then we called up another friend and he brought his car and documents and then we were ready. We took the road test and woah. It was so easy. I mean it just went really well. Yay!!! I passed the test :) Now I can take our car and go for a drive whenever I feel like. Wow. It feels so good.  Feels as if I have achieved something great!!! :P

I really don't know why I am blogging about it.. Nothing really great. But just wanted to let you guys know that I passed the test :)

Here I come America!!! Zoommmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!  :) :)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Absent Minded Me !!!

Yeah!!! My post title says it all. Of late Im being really absent minded. Not that I used to remember things really well before. Duh. I forgot how my cups of water I had poured, seconds ago, while cooking rice yesterday. Today morning I was discussing with my hubby about the chores that I had to do and the bills that I had to pay. We ended up with four tasks. Till now I remember only three of them and still thinking of the fourth one. I know that I will remember it sooner or later, but it is really frustrating at that moment.  Sometimes I used to keep some really important document in a 'so-called' safe place. But when I need it on an emergency, I have to struggle for a minimum of 15 to 20 minutes before I actually find it. I easily get distracted when Im on a call with someone, that I sometimes forget things which I actually wanted to convey. Sometimes we tend to let things slide.

Now that I really have the time to do something about it, I did a little study on the internet about what is really causing this absent mindedness.

Dr. George Grossberg, director of geriatric psychiatry of St.Louis University school of Medicine, says that the temporary "tip of the tongue" forgetfulness is the change that usually happens as we age. But Im not even 25!!!

Sometimes people become forgetful because they are on a sensory overload. Really?? Sensory overload. Huh ??? 

Some say distraction and preoccupation is one main cause of being forgetful. Wait. Playing this 'Cafe World' application in FB counts for distraction or pre-occupation??

There were much more causes like poor friend circle and even cultural change. Whatever it is, I am going to get over this negativity by following some simple remedies.
  • Make a note of everything, to do in a post-it note. However small or less important it may be, things which has to be done should be done anyways right??
  • Do not procrastinate things which you can do right away.
  • Exercise your body, says Dr.Grossberg, for it increases the 'feel good' endorphins and improves our mood.
  • Exercise your mind. Okay so I guess I should take up some new activity to give my brain some work. How about revisiting the little German lessons that I took ?? Sounds good right :) 
Am sure absent mindedness is pretty common in most of us. Actually nothing to worry. But we can avoid the momentary frustrations if we come over this negativity. If there is a way that you follow to remember things, please do share :)

Have a great day all of You!!!.

Friday, April 9, 2010


Sometimes we have to experience things which we would never thought will happen. Sometimes everything that we see looks weird. Sometimes everyone will be around and still we feel lonely. Sometimes things we were longing for will be just next to us but still not reachable. Sometimes opportunities knocks us at the wrong time. Sometimes in life we end up with a situation where we have to decide certain things right there without further delay. Sometimes we are forced to take up certain decisions which we dont like to take, but have to take because of the roles and responsibilities that we hold and because we need some stability in life. Sometimes all those good buddies in life will be totally unavailable when we really need them. Sometimes things we were promised of never happened. Sometimes the world out there will be bustling with activities but we will be standing still. Sometimes we have so many things lined up to be done, but something that ruined our sleep that night will hold us from all those chores. Sometimes we are afraid of taking the next step ahead. Sometimes we feel like slapping that person right across their face for the not-so-sensible sentence that they uttered when we badly needed some words of wisdom.

There have been so many of these "Sometimes" in my life  and all I said to myself was:
"Be Calm. This too shall pass."

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Digsby - collected confusion???

Already gtalk, Y!, IM, orkut, facebook, twitter have made our networking really easy but all the more complex. Now someone somewhere has come out with something new. How about all these networking sites and IM and emails together? How about all updates and pop ups in one screen? That's Digsby for you. IM + Email + Social Networks in one application.

It might be fun or might not be. 
It might be useful or might not be. 
It might save us from opening umpty number of browser tabs or it might end up making things all the more complex. 
It might be cool to use to all the networking sites from our desktop or it might get even messier.

Instead of just thinking about what and what not Digsby can do, dont you think its high time we start using it. But, we have to go through the process of getting used to a new application all over again.

Will it really save our time ? 
Check out and share your opinion about this application.

No Bath On Sundays

I was Facebooking this morning and I saw this link posted by my friend. It sounded funny, and so I checked the page and the website was uber cool. The whole idea behind this is to encourage people to save energy in whatever minimal way they could. So they have taken this simple example of saving water and the whole math behind saving thousands of liters of water by not having bath on one day of the week is explained.

Isn't this cool ??? I mean, not taking bath on a Sunday. 

I guess I'm already saving more than I could !!! :P

So why don't you guys take up the pledge with me. We can all save tons of water !!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Scrabble - Rules Changed !!!

The rules of the world famous word game, SCRABBLE, has been changed for the first time in 62 years, since it was invented and trademarked in 1948. Originally the use of proper nouns was banned in the game. But now, Mattel, the company which owns the distribution rights of SCRABBLE has announced plans to make a few changes to the rules of the game.

The players will now be allowed to use names of celebrities, places and companies. The company believes that the existing players will enjoy this new twist in the game and enable young fans and families to get involved. However, the company will continue to sell the boards with original rules, for players who wish to continue with the old game.

This rule change is definitely going to be fun. I may know a place called "Eachempatti", a remote town in India, which may sound totally bizarre to my opponent. Or my opponent might try some popular Japanese celebrity's name which I would never have even heard in my life.

Whatever it is. Change is good. Always!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Cherry Blossom Festival 2010 !!!

The National Cherry blossom festival, here in Washington D.C, was the talk of the town for the past few days and it was finally here last week. Cherry blossom festival showcases the beauty of the 3000 cherry trees that were gifted to the United states from Japan in 1912. The trees are spread across the tidal basin and the view is breathtaking. Millions of tourists from across the country and the world come to enjoy this natural beauty of the capital every year. In spite of the crowd and the parking difficulties, we managed to spend enough time watching the blooms. It was definitely worth it. Just a little stroll across the basin watching the pretty pink and white blooms was just so relaxing and wonderful. Here are few snaps from my bloom watch.