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My unfinished letter to Ghalib 

Aapke baad Ab humein koi khat nahi likhta, Ghalib… Garma ka mausam aata hai aur chilchilati dopharein bina koi aam ki farmaish laaye guzar jaati hain. Ab aam bhi us tarah ke kahan, waqt ke saath har cheez badalti gayi aur har cheez mein aam bhi shumar hogaya. Is saal toh, february ke mahine mein hi nazar aaney lagay the loug sadakoun par aam liye, lekin kya faida? Woh aam toh carbide se pakaye gaye the aur unmein toh woh meetha zaiqa hi nahi, aap khaatey toh bahot udaas hotey, main bhi hui thi. Bahot rona aur ghussa aaya insaan ki jaldbaazi par,yeh haal hai ab yahan ke ache aam mayasar hona bahot mushkil hai. Insaan ki jaldbaazi aur scientific advancements ne toh zindagi se lutf cheenliya hai, choti choti cheezein ab kisi ko khush nahi karti. Khair, insaan ki is fitrat par tafseeli tabserah aapse agle khat mein karoungi.

Sochiye, aap bazaar se meethi meethi khusboo walay aam ghar lekar aaye aur jab kaatkar khaanay lagey toh woh safaid aur pheekey se nikley? Aapko ghussa nahi aayega? Mujhe bhi aaya, shadeed ghussa aaya.

Aapki tarah, mujhe bhi aam bahot pasand hain, aur kaash mere bhi aise dost o ahbaab hotey jo meri farmaishein poori kartey. Ab toh farmaishein bhi mehengi lagti hain. Zaiqedaar Baganpalli ya Baada​​mi aam ab kam az kam dedh sau rupaye kilo se miltey hain. 

Garmi toh hadd se zyada badhgayi hai, aur aise mausam mein bus aam ki deed hi kaafi hai dil (aur dimagh) ko thanda karne ke liye. 
Ab toh, aam se kayi meethey aur mithaiyaan banai jaati hain, par jab main aam ko kisi aur cheez mein milaya dekhti hoon bahot takleef hoti, jab triffle,pudding ya cakes mein log aam ka istemal kartey hain toh uska zaiqa bahot minimal hota hai. Mujhe aisa mehsoos hota hai jaise main aam se bewafai karrahi hoon, isiliye main ghar pe aisa kuch banane hi nahi deti. Aam ko toh bus aam ki tarah hi khaana chahiye. Kuch log toh aise bhi hotey hain, jo aamras mein doodh milatey hain, bhala iski kya zaroorat hai. Kesari, sanderi jaise raseeley aam ka sirf ras hi kaafi hai, ismein doodh milaney ki kya tukk banti hai! Samjh nahi aati inlogou ki mantakh. 
Mantakh se yaad aaya un makhlooq ka jo aam khaatey hi nahi, aur aam ke naam par hi ajeeeb si shakal banaletey hain. Aise logoun ke liye main aksar aapka, “Gadhey hi aam nahi khaatey” wala khissa dhorati hoon.

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Night of the Scorpion*

Once, I found a pretty piece of glass, and to say that I was fond of it will be quite an understatement. It had smooth edges, so smooth that I wouldn’t tire running my hands along them. It was always tucked carefully in my bag, but one day it fell and shattered to pieces. 

Pieces, like those of a jigsaw puzzle; I glued them together. But the edges weren’t familiar, they weren’t soft and smooth like I loved them. I tested them against my palm, that didn’t help but it surely left cuts on my right palm. They were ragged. I tried rubbing them against the wall, it chipped the paint off. Then, I wondered if my table could ease them out, but it left numerous nicks on the polished surface of the tabletop. 

Then, I realized, with our little minds and big hearts, we try hard to mend things and we go out of our way to cushion the broken pieces, to rectify our and their mistakes, to restore and undo the damage, but what we don’t see is; in the process of amendment, we hurt ourselves again and again. We bruise our hearts, some things are better left un-mended and broken. If we didn’t have broken pieces, we wouldn’t learn; sometimes, it is better to leave the shards of a glass to be just that. Tuck them away in a safe corner. And just let everything be. Let go and let be. 

*I know this has nothing to do with Nissim Ezekiel poem, I used the title coz I wanted to name this Night of Realization but Night Of the Scorpion was all I could hear in my head. Realization bit me like Scorpion bit Nissim’s mother. 

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Just Be.

This year, I’d like to remind myself to Just Be,
No matter the situation  I am in,
Or the people I am with,
When the time needs, I shall Just Be
Unabashedly myself, Just Be.
When the times get tough,
And the circumstances tougher,
I won’t put a mask of the toughest
But let the tides take me down for a while,
Rest there, take my time and Just Be.
When the whirlwind of emotions takes over me
I shall embrace them all, befriend them
accept them as a part of me and Just Be.
This year, I will fight one breath at a time,
I will grow, one step at a time,
and live life, one day at a time.
And I will remind myself each moment
Not to lose but hold and help myself
and Just Be, as raw as I can be, I shall Just Be.

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This is too late for “New Year Resolutions” and I am not really a resolution kind of person but this time I have few small milestones to cross, I shall try my best to hop over them gracefully, God willingly. 🙂

P.S: I know this is too raw but hey I just told myself I will be raw 😉

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My Tryst with Cricket

Disclaimer: Too long.

It all began when I was born in a cricket frenzy family. Growing up, I played cricket more than I ever played with my dolls and toys. With plastic bat and ball to hardcover textbooks to proper bat n ball. Then on the Playstation. . Oh also those cricket cards, remember those?
I know the rules to gully cricket, courtesy of my brothers they always took me in their team (Well they had no choice after destroying my doll houses). I played cricket in our hall with my brothers cautiously, trying not to break any of Ammi’s precious show pieces and vases.

My Dad and uncles are chalte phirtey encyclopedias of Cricket (like almost every other Indian). Never mention anything about cricket in front of them and expect for the discussion to end soon. Mention a player and they will give you his cricket shajra (Shajra- Genealogical tree).
Usually on fridays, after the friday prayers, all of them sit together and watch an old match highlights (usually IndVsPak Sharjah tours) and reminiscence the on field rivalry and sledging. This goes on for hours without any break, they will take a break only to youtube the clip where Azharuddin is seen telling Afridi “Zara time deke daalo na baday bhai” or Javed Miandad’s on field comments.
If any of us (the kids) are present there, one of my uncles will without fail explain the greatness of a particular shot of a particular match. There’s no easy way to end the Cricket discussions at my household.
With this madness at hand, it was natural for me to get infused with the passion for the game. I don’t remember when or how I became one of the active participants. Besides playing with my brothers and cousins, I never followed a match on TV. I knew the basic rules and all but never followed a match.

I guess it changed when India reached the final of Natwest series in 2002 and beat england by two wickets or so. Who does not remember that match? If nothing else, for Ganguly’s celebration after the victory. 😉
And after that, I started following India’s matches regularly, now I learned about the minor differences between Test and ODI matches. I started picking up tidbits of information from the discussions at home. Polished my General Knowledge of Cricket, I learnt why Dravid was the Wall and Shoaib Akhtar the Pindi Express, Gilchrist-Gilly etc.

While I was learning about the game, the 2003 World Cup started. That Tournament was the first one when I was pumped up for each and every match India played and other big matches as well. Everyone used to gather at our place after their office hours, and our hall was filled for every match. I was so into the game that I remember asking my maulvisaab (our Quran tutor) to pray for India’s victory. Well, even he was a cricket fan and while teaching us, he’d ask us to update him with the score 😛
And when India reached into the Semi’s, I took matters in my own hands and started praying for India’s win. (Do not give me that look, I was a kid, for God’s sake!)
This was the time when I started betting with one of my uncles :$ Yes, I did that as well.
And then came the finals, my my my that was the time when I learnt what it was to be heartbroken! On a side note, does anyone remember Zaheer Khan’s mom’s message for him before the finals? That was Aww-worthy.

Then there was a drop in the team’s performance after the world cup and I lost interest for few months.I was lured again into the game with the influx of some new players; MSD n Irfan Pathan and others. Pathan’s almost all rounder performance against Pakistan in 2004, I guess, made me his fan.
Anyone remember that 183 of 140 balls or something by Dhoni against SriLanka? I remember the joke that was doing rounds in our family after that victory “Dhoni, dho diya sabko!”
In 2007, with many expectations and high hopes, I supported the Indian Team in the World Cup only to be heartbroken once again. </3
And then then then Dhoni was made the Captain, and this was the time when I was more than ever into the game, one of the reasons was until then, I’d no one in my friends circle who used to watch cricket, then I met two other cricket fans and we religiously watched every match and discussed it on the phone and the next day in the school. We kept record of bowling figures and runs. Inaugural WT20 will be remembered for three things, first and foremost Yuvraj’s Six sixes to Stuart Board. Khekhe. Secondly of course because we won
and thirdly for Dhoni’s captaincy. Remember my bets with my uncle? Well, they were fruitful now 😛
I was up the whole night to witness Indian team’s return to India after winning the cup. I’d school the next day 🙂
At this point, no matter who played, if anyone from my family wanted an update on score, they’d call me up. Yes, I had transformed into that person.
And then came the IPL, it didn’t really entice me initially but it grew on me.

Fast forward to 2011, World cup now clashed with my 12th Boards. Yep. My Chemistry tuition sir was asking us to set routine for preparation now with zero distractions and say goodbye to TV, and I, of all the girls in the room, utter in a low voice “But Sir, World Cup is going to start.” He looked at me, smiled his usual smile and replied “Kyun betey? Unless you are betting on the games you needn’t worry about those and focus on your studies.” Well I was betting, with my heart and soul on India’s win.
Khair, that didn’t prevent me from following the matches. India’s group match against England was at the crucial stage and I had to go for Physics’ tuition. We had a test or sort of a test in the class that day, but I was the first one to get there and I put up a condition for writing the test, well it was, Sir would update me with the score if he wanted me to write the test. *shrugs*  Well he did update me, also explained me the necessity of keeping cool like our Captain Cool in the crucial hours. Then the journey to Semi finals was made with few ups and downs. But we’d beaten the defending champions (Australia) and then  came 26th March, Ind Vs Pak, lol, in that game I was neutral, I promised myself I’d be okay even if we lose this. No problem. But we won, and I was teeny meeny sad that Pakistan lost.
2nd April 2011, I still had one exam to go, but supporting my team was my priority then. And I couldn’t have been anymore ecstatic than I’ve been on that day. I could feel the adrenaline rush, if I were in India that time, I’d be on streets with the Indian flag going all Kajol like from K3g “HUM JEEEETGAYE!” But sadly I was not. Hahaha!

2011-2014, my years went in a jiffy. I don’t remember watching any match, except for any one here and there and IPL matches every now and then. I was up to date with stats and trivia but rarely switched on the TV to watch cricket.
With 2015, the cricket enthusiast in me was reborn, I was prepped up to support my team in defending the title. But khair we all know what happened.
This time I had my exams again, and I somehow managed to butter my HOD in flexing the timings for the practical exam whose date clashed with India’s match against Bangladesh (Pros of being a favourite student :P), and for another knock out match I was updated every few minutes by our lab assistant. Khair to say that I was heartbroken at India’s exit will be an understatement.
Then IPL came to my rescue and cheered me a bit (a bit because I was supporting SRH). Also that we’d WT20 coming up consoled me then.
While I waited for next year, I started following the game regularly.

2016, it promised to satisfy my heart with various tournaments. Started with one against Australia,followed by Sri Lanka’s tour and then the real madness began with T20 Asia Cup.
And when we won that cup, I was more than pumped for the upcoming WT20.
We lost the first match against New Zealand, I was disheartened. But nope, ain’t nobody got time to be sad after one defeat. So I was there supporting my team with full josh o jazba. Mahn oh Mahn were the matches nail-baiting! God! Those matches had stress written all over them. Every boundary by opponents teams n every catch drops by our team, brought the heart into my throat. Those feels.
Especially the one against Bangladesh. Heart was not in the  throat but in the mouth. NO exaggeration. AT ALL. Stress levels were at peak. I couldn’t sit still in the last few overs. I was chatting with a friend while watching the match, and because I had phone in my hand, I didn’t chip off my nails. Even after we won that thrilling match, my heartbeat didn’t get back to its normal pace for an hour or so.

image1(1)image3image2Snippets of the chat I had while watching the match. *Hides face*

Then, the next match, Kohli’s chase made me a proud Indian cricket team fan.
In Semi-Finals, we had enough score but the West Indian team were better than us that day and it was their day. We had few bad moments in the second innings but it was their day. Not gonna be a sore loser.
And I was more than happy that they won the final coz to be honest, they deserved it. They they had to show their board their capabilities and that they could win without ANY help from the WICB.

One thing, that this T20 world cup changed for me was my appreciation for Kohli. It’s not like I disliked him earlier, I always accepted that he was a good player but this tournament really changed something about my perspective of him. The way he carried the batting line up was really amazing. Falling of the wickets didn’t really upset me unless it was his or Dhoni’s. There were times when I wished the opening batsmen were out instead of wasting balls. For me, in T20WC, bowlers, Kohli and Dhoni were the stars.

And now the ipl has begun, I haven’t really seen a single match yet. Because exams.
But insha’Allah once I’m done I shall catch up with the madness. And this year, I won’t be supporting Hyderabad anymore. Sorry. They are the Pakistani team (no offense padosis) of IPL. Good on paper and you know how on field. So no thank you.

This is my affair with the game. And I don’t think it’s going to stop anytime in the near future. To many more matches that we shall play and trophies we will win! 🙂

I know this is probably too long, if you’re reading this, Thank You. I tried, I really tried to cut it down but I couldn’t. 😦

How’s the garmi treating y’all?

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Nu yeer, nu post, hu dis?

Well well hello {from the other side (it’s okay  there’s no need to roll your eyes..joke hai relax!)} everyone! If you were thinking we forgot you and our blog, then we didn’t. We didn’t. I promise you WE DIDN’T!
I know we keep getting MIA but that’s just our life. We don’t do it intentionally. I don’t even have an excuse this time, because I know and realize I (we) should  be blogging  more often but that just doesn’t happen. I try hard. I keep racking my head for ideas and keep mentally writing posts but when the time comes to execute those ideas, type them out on lappy, my brain tells me ” Nu brain, who dis?” Ab aap hi bataein karein toh kya karein?

So much has happened since the last post, so be prepared for a long long long post.

*offers you a virtual cup of coffee*

First things first, got done with the worst semester of my life. I don’t even know how I appeared for those exams, it took some supernatural force to write them. Blegh. But Alhamdulilah it’s done and now it’s been 17 days that I’m back in my Haven, Riyadh, enjoying the bone rattling winters.
My past few winters were in Hyderabad, where the last temperature drop is usually about 15 degrees celsius, so I was really looking forward to this trip of mine and mahn was my dua to experience winter was fulfilled. Alhamdulilah. It’s comparatively warm this weekend at 13-15 degrees. Okay I need to stop before I sound like “Namaskaar mausam ka tazaa haal lekar main hoon aapke saath Miss Maqsood….”

During my flight to Riyadh, I realized why I don’t like traveling alone because I don’t have my HUMAN PILLOW(s) with me then. No I don’t sleep most of the time on flight but to be comfortable I need one. Also when you travel alone you are obviously seated next to strangers, hello anxiety! It sure does make you feel like a strong independent lady but I’d prefer not to be next to strangers. Nope. Sorry. *shakes head*  *gloriously crawls back into her cocoon*
So I’m in Riyadh, enjoying winters, loving being the centre of attention of my parents (huaha!) and hanging out with my crazies (kinda reliving my school days). Alhamdulilah.

This made me realize two things. Firstly, this is the first time I’m alone with my parents, none of my brothers are here. So I  am getting their undivided attention and whenever they want anything, I’m expected to do it and I cannot be lazy and pass it on to my younger brother like I always do. (There’s one Hyderabadi saying for this situation that is something like ” Kuttey ku boley toh kutta uski dumm ku bola”. Self explanatory. )
And whenever I do something without being asked to, it fills them with joy and the Dua’s that follow are priceless. It’s not that they are incapable of doing stuff by themselves but they have reached that age, when they are supposed to be looked and cared after. They have done enough. And we have grown old enough to do our chores and house chores, so let’s not be lazy pseudo-teens.
Khair, let’s not get into sentimental stuff. Second thing I realized in the past few days is no matter where you go, what you do, there will always be that close knit of people who will have your back, your family and friends. Kuch bhi hojao they will be there. Through the ups and the downs, highs and lows. And if you have those people around you be thankful to the Lord coz it is a Niyamah (blessing), believe me it is. I cannot emphasize enough on how their presence can make your life easy and smooth. Even if they cannot help you out, they will stick by you. They will listen to you, they will let you cry. But they will be there. Beside you. Behind you. Also please be careful before including someone in that circle. Coz not everyone you meet are going to stay.
Kuch heavy hogaya nahi? Moving on.

December 27th was Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib’s birth anniversary. That day, my parents and I started watching Mirza Ghalib the serial (was aired on DD national in 1988), starring Naseeruddin Shah as Ghalib. We watched first five episodes in a go before we realized it was 12 am. Then we decided to resume on weekend. But that weekend never came.
So I decided to take matters in my hand  and watch it all alone by myself coz my parents were busy adulting. I have finished 11 of 16 episodes. And boy am I loving it! I was always fascinated by Ghalib because of his wit, he made me laugh in awe.
This serial cleared some serious misconceptions that I had regarding him. Anyone who’s interested to know more about him, should really watch it, it’s on Youtube. I’m not sure if everything that’s portrayed in that drama is to the T but most of it is from his letters, Khutoot-e-Ghalib. 🙂

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Now that we are talking about Ghalib, there’s this post by Sulphurman that you should really reallly read if you are Ghalib-crazy.

*Are you still there? If yes, Thank you. Offers you another cup of coffee*

Guys! 2015 is over! Last year went in a jiffy, I was telling one of my friends it went by like how our 11th grade did, our life was in induced semi comatose phase. Stagnant yet moving at light’s speed. Only the year end result shook us up. And in the same way, as smooth n bland the starting three quarters of 2015 were the last quarter was quite turbulent. Nothing serious Alhamdulilah but you understand right? 🙂
Life had it’s fair share of everything but 2015 didn’t really  have anything in particular that I would love to look back at.
Tread on some paths I thought I would never walk on. Missed some opportunities coz I was being lazy. Bairhaal!

Let’s hope and pray (ijtemai duaa anyone?) this year, we grow to be someone we’d like to be.
Let’s give and not hold back but please hold back your over, microscopic criticism to yourselves. If you disapprove of something, or disagree over something, state your point and back off. Do NOT force your opinions.
**Also don’t be a cynic please. I can handle your over the rainbow optimism, your deep dark pessimism also I accept you with your lens of realism, but cynicism, no chance. I don’t really have a place for them n their sh*t in my life. No thank you! If you cannot say anything good, kindly shut up, Yes disagree but don’t be a cynic.Please. **
Sorry was carried away, back to the ijtemai duaa.
Let’s chase our dreams. 
Let’s rekindle our faith in ourselves and our capabilities.
Let’s read read and read more, and write write and write some more.
Let’s fill our hearts with love till it’s filled to the brim.
Let’s laugh till our stomachs ache and cry till our hearts heal.
Let’s live each day, make the day count and not forget to be thankful for every new day. Insha’Allah!
I’d like to end the post, like my friend would have,
“Aaj ,aaj ek hasi aur baant lo, aaj ek dua aur maang lo, aaj ek ansoon aur pee lo, aaj ek zindagi aur jee lo, aaj ek sapna aur dekh lo, aaj … kya pata, kal ho naa ho”
*Srk’s signature pose* 😛
Hope you liked my randomness and coffee. 🙂

P.S : I know two of you had tagged me in posts and I’d kinda promised you guys I would do it but I didn’t. I apologize 😦