MY BLOGS

Life brings with a plethora of experiences, each with a flavour of its own. I wish to share with all my readers these various experiences and observations that I have made during my time here on this planet. They may be funny, thought-provoking or simple reflections. I do hope you will find these enjoyable and interesting.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Round Three of Celebrating Blogging!


Three cheers!!! We have made it to the third round!  Thanks to all those who supported us through our journey till here.

Please watch this space for links to the coming chapters and please continue to support us.

Chapter 21  Chapter 22  Chapter 23  Chapter 24  Chapter 25
Chapter 26  Chapter 27  Chapter 28  Chapter 29  Chapter 30

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Memory Intrigues - Chapter 11

Our Team Logo done by Ruchita


This is the Eleventh chapter of Memory Intrigues , a mystery series in the “Game of Blogs” for the team “ Dynamic Word Weavers” as a part of # CelebrateBlogging campaign by Blogadda.

 You can read the previous chapter here , or check out all the chapters on our FB page here

The story so far:

In the bedroom, sleep totally eludes Shekhar and Tara.  Tara recollects how she told the editor that she has some thrilling news that can boost their channel’s TRP.  In return, they have to let her host the much hyped new talk show of their channel.  The avaricious editor agreed at once and showered Tara with bouts of appreciation.  Tara knows that she had not done right with Shekhar but this was the only option she had to resurrect her drowning career.  She cannot tolerate being humiliated every day in office.

Shekhar tosses and turns on the bed as thoughts of Jen shrouds his mind. The newsreader’s words strike like a bullet in his heart “Is Jennifer alive or has been brutally murdered?” He prays God again and again to keep Jen safe.

___________________________________________________
In the absence of real cocks to wake humans up to a new day, Tara’s clock takes on the onerous responsibility of jolting her out of her happy reveries.  She opens her eyes, not quite sure where she is.  She takes a few moments to come back to reality and suddenly thoughts of all that happened yesterday flood her befuddled mind.  That is enough to wake her up fully and get her out of bed, raring to go.
She goes into Roohi’s room to wake her up.  Roohi looks so innocent, her long eyelashes falling on her rosy, chubby cheeks.  The pink teddy tightly snuggled up in her arms only adds to the picture of innocence and vulnerability.  “Who would believe this is the same devil who talks like she is 90 and gets up to so much of mischief when she is awake” Tara thinks.  But then Roohi has changed so much in the past few weeks – how fractious she is getting these days, how cranky she is, how little interest she shows in her school work, how withdrawn she is!  For a moment, Tara wonders what has happened to her little imp.  She thinks of the phone call she received from Roohi’s class teacher informing her that Roohi is not quite herself in school these days and inquiring if all was well at home.  Tara had curtly informed the teacher that there was no problem, every child has her ups and downs and this is probably just a transient phase.  Then she remembers that she needs to get Roohi ready for school, finish her cooking and leave for work herself.  She gets back on her invisible roller shoes and flies around the house to get all her tasks done.
It is 9 am when Tara reaches office.  The boss is already there.  The office slowly comes to life with reporters, peons and other staff trickling in.  “No one seems to be concerned about punctuality these days!  What has happened to good old fashioned discipline?” she wonders.
At around 10 am, Tara gets a call from Cyrus.  “What now” she thinks as she rolls her eyes.  
“Good morning Madam” says Cyrus from the other end.
“Good morning”.
“Madam, after talking to you, I talked to my head of department and he has agreed to allow me to come to Mumbai immediately.  I am so delighted and wish to get off to a running start.  I have booked my flight and I will be in Mumbai by evening.  I shall report to your office tomorrow morning.  What time would be convenient”?
“Ummm....let me see!  I have a meeting with the Editor at 9.30 in the morning.  Then I have some other work to do.  You could come in by 2 pm.  Is that alright”?
“Oh, that is perfect!  Shall come in at 2 pm then”.
“A very well spoken young man”! she reflects.  “His accent sounds very refined his diction immaculate and he seems eager enough to work.  Well, that only time will tell”.
Tara leans back in her chair.  She lets out a deep sigh of contentment.  What could be better for her?  She had just got a sensational piece of news aired on last evening’s news telecast.  The boss, Mr. Raheja, has had no option but to give in to her demand and allow her to host the talk show.
Now she would have a lot of work to do.  The routine jobs would of course be there to be handled.  She would now have to work out a format for the show, short list the interviewees, send out invitations, fix up dates for the actual interviews.....there is not much time left for all this to be done.  The channel wants to air the first show by the beginning of October and it is now end of July.  Add to that she would be mentoring Cyrus.  She can feel the adrenalin rush.
Back at home the scene is a total contrast to that in Tara’s office.  Shekhar as usual sits with a cup of coffee at his table, his laptop open and his mind somewhere else.  It is now almost a week since Jennifer disappeared.  There seems to be no way of contacting her.  Where is she?  Is she safe?  How can he find out something about her?  Who would know?  How was she surviving?  Surely she would need money.  How much money did she have with her when she went missing?  A sudden thought occurs to him.  She might have withdrawn cash from somewhere or the other during this last week.  It would help to check her bank statement.  But where could he get that?  The last he knew, Jennifer used to bank with the State Bank of Travancore, Mattancherry branch in Kochi.  Maybe he could get some information from there?  He gets the contact number on Google search.  Thank God for technological progress!  They have made life so much simpler and faster.
“Good morning, Mr. Shekhar Dutta here.  I am speaking from Mumbai.  I wanted some information about my friend Ms. Jennifer Joseph, who is your customer”.
“Sorry, sir, but we are not authorized to give customer information to anyone”.
“Please listen to me.  Ms. Jennifer has gone missing since the past one week and I am unable to trace her anywhere.  I am extremely concerned about her security.  I wanted to know if there would be any record of her transactions indicating where she last withdrew cash from”.
“What you are asking for, Sir, is totally impossible.  I am sorry we cannot help out in this matter”.
Shekhar is exasperated and demands to speak to the bank manager.  The bank manager is equally unforthcoming.
“Sir, you should understand that the bank cannot divulge customer information to just about anyone unauthenticated person who calls the bank.  I am extremely sorry we cannot help you.  You don’t even know her account number.  So please Sir, it would be good if you stop wasting your time and ours”.  
Shekhar hears a click of the phone on the other side and is totally distraught.  He sits there holding his head in his hands.  Maybe he will now need to do what he was trying to avoid all these days – involve the police.
He goes to the local police station and informs them about Jennifer’s disappearance.
SI (digging his teeth) :  Sir, we cannot file FIR here.  Ms. Jennifer lives in Kochi.  You have to file complaint in police station in her area.
“But she said she was coming to Mumbai.  Surely you could lodge an FIR here and then contact your counterparts in Kochi?  How can you be so unhelpful when you are here to help the public”?
SI (looking contemptuously):  “Saab, jaaiye, Saab.  Humara time khali peeli waste nahi karneka.  Dikhai nahi deta kya, hum kitne busy hain?  Yeh nahi ho sakta”. (“Sir, please leave.  Don’t keep wasting our time.  Don’t you see how busy we are?  This cannot be done”.)
Shekhar is fuming but it does not help.  He stomps out of the police station and wanders around a bit.  “Bloody bureaucracy!  Each of them more corrupt than the other” he mutters to himself.

Source:  Google Images modified for use.


Read the next part of the story here


Me and my team are participating in ‘Game Of Blogs’ at BlogAdda.com. #CelebrateBlogging with us.

Celebrate Blogging - Round II


Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!!  We're through to round II.


Watch this space to find out!

Friday, 19 September 2014

Celebrating Blogging


This is a group of young and not so young bloggers who have come together to participate in a competition #CelebrateBlogging organized by BlogAdda.com

The group comprising of :

Aditi Kaushiva, Kiran Acharya, Purba Chakraborty, Sulaiman Sait, Ruchita Dalal Shah, Shetall Ramsinghani, Madhavi A, Ganga Bharani, Rajesh K, and Swati Aiyer

started weaving a tale called "Memory Intrigues".



The first part comprising of 10 chapters have been published - one chapter each by the individual bloggers.  Here are the links:

Watch this space for Part II:



Part III:


We invite all our readers to come read the story, "like" us and share your comments with us at http://win.blogadda.com/game-of-blogs/dynamic_wordweavers/ and help us to win.  We would really appreciate your encouragement.

You stand to win a goodie from BlogAdda for the best comment.

Thanking all of you.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Memory Intrigues - Chapter 6

Our Team logo done by Ruchita

This is the Sixth chapter of Memory Intrigues , a mystery series in the “Game of Blogs” for the team “ Dynamic Word Weavers” as a part of # CelebrateBlogging campaign by Blogadda.

 You can read the previous chapter here , or check out all the chapters on our FB page here

The story so far:

Tara and Shekhar are diametrically opposite personalities and of late find it very hard to live with each other. Tara has always been a career oriented woman while Shekhar is more laid back and tries to define his own life. The only bond between them is Roohi, their innocent, growing  daughter.


After dinner, Tara is busy replying to her e-mails. She wonders about Shekhar’s low spirits and decides to get to the bottom of his melancholy.


“Shekhar, what’s wrong with you? Is every thing ok? For the past two days, I find you perturbed. Is anything important bothering you?”
Shekhar cannot deal with his anxiety any more. He feels like a small baby in his mother’s lap and does not try to hide it from Tara anymore. He narrates what has happened to Jennifer and how he has been eagerly awaiting the phone call from her for the past two days .
......
Tara spends a restless night, tossing and turning, her mind a haze of thoughts. On one hand she is fuming over the situation at work. She can’t get over the gross injustice that the bosses have done by handing over a plum assignment to a guy 5 years her junior – a greenhorn, an upstart! She fails to understand how people in such responsible positions could be so unprofessional and partisan. What was it the editor threw at her? Oh yes! ““If you prefer to work on certain assignments, create your own leads.” So that was it! Well, she would show him what she could do!


On the other, thoughts about what Shekhar has told her start churning around in her mind. She starts ruminating about the relationship between Shekhar and Jennifer. Why is Shekhar so worried about this photographer? One could understand if he were concerned in an ordinary way, but why is he so excessively worried? Is there more to their relationship than meets the eye?


The mind, they say, is a monkey. One never knows what random thoughts it can string together to create an entirely new train of thoughts. So it is that Tara’s mind suddenly connects her problems at work with Shekhar’s story and violĂ , she has the very lead she needs to avenge the insult heaped on her by the editor.


Next day starts off as usual and Tara gets back to work after dropping Roohi off at school.  She is tired from lack of sleep, albeit in a slightly better frame of mind, now that she has an idea brewing in her head.


She even manages a nonchalant smile at the editor and the sub-editor as she enters the office. The sub-editor gives her a puzzled look wondering what’s brewing in Tara’s mind.  How can she smile after all that transpired yesterday? The editor walks off to his cabin pretending Tara does not exist.


Tara smiles inwardly and gets down to work. She has to plan her interview with the film director. She jots down a list of questions she wants to ask him. She should not forget to ask about the latest gossip about him and the daughter of a senior actor in the industry. The photographer in her office had managed to get some very juicy photographs last week of the two at an isolated resort.


At lunch time Tara pulls out her lunchbox consisting of a salad and a cheese sandwich.  She eats by herself at her table. At another table there is a group of reporters eating and jabbering nineteen to the dozen. Tara’s sharp ears catch little snippets of gossip .....


“Did you see that news telecast on ‘Jabardast’ channel about that sensational case of the murder of a businessman in Prabhadevi”?


“Yes, I did. But I quite thought they overdid it and kept showing the same clips again and again and yet again ...... It is sad what news telecasts have come to. From BBC’s ‘on the hour every hour’ news telecasts, we have graduated to 24 hours, never ending sagas”.


“What else can they talk about? Topics are limited. They have to compete with other channels by presenting 24X7 news coverage”.


“Talking of which, did you hear about the new show that is going to be telecast on our very own news channel”?


“Yes, I believe they want this programme to be our channel’s premier programme. They plan to have topical discussions with the top notch from various walks of life”.


Tara’s ears perk up at this. She can visualize herself talking to all the ‘who’s who’ from the political arena, filmdom, literati ..... She can see herself asking very incisive questions and putting the politicians in a tough spot. She can hear people discussing her programme and  her popularity as the hostess of a talk show skyrocketing ..... well, well, why ever not? She is after all one of the topmost reporters of her channel and her work record has been nothing short of outstanding to say the least.


The rest of the day passes in a haze. Tara can’t stop daydreaming about the new programme. She is absolutely confident she will be handling it.


The day has gone as usual for Shekhar. He has still not heard anything from Jennifer and has consequently spent the day pacing about the balcony like a caged lion, sitting at his laptop, ruminating, worrying ..... Any productive work has proved to be a peripheral issue and has had to be fitted in those little slots between all the ‘hectic’ activity.


Tara returns home as usual at around 9 pm. She is in a state of irrepressible excitement.  She heads straight to Shekhar’s study. She finds him reclining on his chair, his head resting on the chairback, staring vacantly into space.


“Shekhar, I have something very interesting to tell you today”.


“.........”


“Do you know what, I heard the channel is planning to introduce a new talk show at prime time. It is going to be very interesting and will involve discussions with the top brass from various fields”.


“..........”


“I am absolutely sure this opportunity is going to land into my lap. After all I am one of the senior most reporters they have and my contribution to the channel has not been something to scoff at”.


“..........”


It is a while before Tara notices that she has been soliloquizing all along. She throws a sharp look in Shekhar’s direction. In fact, if looks could kill.....Shekhar would have been reduced to a pile of ashes on the spot!


Read the next part of the story here

Me and my team are participating in ‘Game Of Blogs’ at BlogAdda.com. #CelebrateBlogging with us.