Thursday, 2 May 2019

April, What a Month!

Hello Readers! How was your first month of the financial year? It sure went by in a flash for me. As for my personal goals, I achieved quite a little but as for my professional goals, I won big time! So, here we go! Check out the books I read, the TV shows/movies I watched & the places I explored!!

I went to 3 places on back to back weekends; Nashik, Pune & Kochi! It sure sounds like I am living the dream, but to be honest, staying at home doing nothing is just as awesome to me. So, in all these trips I got the best of both worlds. I explored the cities & also took the much needed relaxation.

Sula Vineyards, Nashik:
I had always wanted to visit Sula Vineyards. It is something almost every person in Mumbai has done. So, finally the plan was on & I went there with my 2 colleagues. It was a 2-day awesome trip. I didn’t feel like committing an entire post to it. So, here’s a quickie.
We chose a bad time to visit but if it wouldn’t have been now, then the whole things would have gotten cancelled. It was a fun trip & everything went soothingly well with almost no hiccups. We went to Nashik by train which was a pretty quick 3-hour ride. We reached Nashik by 10 AM. We got dressed up & left soon.
Sula Vineyards is quite popular in India. It has been around since 1998 & it was doing pretty good. Most people prefer Sula wines. There was an entire Tour of the factory where wine is made along with some knowledge sharing. At the end of the tour was what everyone likes; Wine Tasting! Unfortunately, I hate wine so I barely had any. I just wanted to experience the whole thing & check a mark in the checklist!
There are many spots in the Sula premises to take photos & we took opportunity of each one of those! Check some of the photos below!

In the evening, we had a nice dinner at a roof-top restaurant. The next day we had a train to catch, but it was delayed for more than 3 hours. We had more time to lazy around & chill, but instead, we chucked the train option & booked a cab home. It was a fun impromptu road trip which we will always remember! So, that was one of my most successful trips with friends.

I spent the next weekend in Pune. My mom & dad were already there & I thought of joining them for a day. This trip was for the sole reason of relaxing & not thinking about anything except where to eat. All of Saturday, we planned on where we will eat. More precisely, I planned on where to go & my parents just followed it. Both the places were amazing!  So, I had a nice lunch, an amazing afternoon nap, a nice dinner & then again, a wonderful night’s sleep & I was back the next day!

Kochi was definitely the highlight of the month! This was my 3rd trip within the first 4 months of the year! It was a 3 days’ trip which went by in a flash. I got to see a lot of amazing places in Kochi. I will be writing a full-fledged blog on that soon!

In a nutshell, the highlight of the month was definitely some explorations & relaxations while travelling!

If you recollect from this post, I was supposed to read these 3 novels; The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, Lost Man by Jane Harper & Hippie by Paulo Coelho. But, of course, whenever I plan on reading particular books, I end up reading something else entirely. I read one novel, two poetry books & one non-fiction book. More details below!

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy:
I have very openly expressed my thoughts on this novel. You can check it out here & here. I truly do not wish to write more about it. It was a 1.5/5 stars or even less, but I know I hated it.

Love Her Wild by Atticus:
I had been following Atticus on Instagram since years now. And the fact that I was a part of his journey from online publishing to physical publishing is something I find quite amazing! So, I finally read his book of poetry & of course, I liked it. Although, I had just read Rupi Kaur’s ‘The Sun and her Flowers’ & compared to hers, it felt a bit less intense. Still, I liked the words, some were just so incredibly brilliant! Here are my favourite lines:

“Love is diving headfirst into someone else’s confusion and finding that it all makes sense.”
"Even those we love the most can be a poison to our souls.”

A Thousand Mornings by Mary Oliver:
I have been following Rega Jha on Instagram, who is the Founder & Ex-Editor in Chief at Buzzfeed. She is the most intellectual, self-aware & sensible young woman of this generation. I have a list of book recommendations from her & so I finally decided to read this one. ‘A Thousand Mornings’ is another book of poetry by Mary Oliver. Even though it was published in 2012, while reading it felt like it was written by someone centuries ago. That’s because of two reasons. Firstly, it had that old soul vibe to it. And secondly, it is very difficult to understand. I couldn’t understand a lot of it, so I’m sure it must be something profound. Here are some of my favourties:

“You fuss over life with your clever words, mulling and chewing on its meaning, while we just live it.”
“For some things, there are no wrong seasons. Which is what I dreamt of for me.”

Ikigai by Albert Liebermann and Hector Garcia:
This is a book I never thought I would read. I am not into non-fiction. I don’t find it remotely interesting. I read to imagine a different world & mainly as an escape mechanism. But, when it is non-fiction, it is not an escape. It’s just life & people telling how to live. And in this particular book, it talks about living to be more than a 100. So, obviously it was not my thing & I didn’t like it much.
          I thought this book was about finding something from within or finding some psychological answer to questions. But, it turned out to be just science. Focusing on diet, finding a purpose (ikigai) in life, forming social ties & so on. I didn’t expect this from the book. This is telling me what I already know & me choosing not to follow it. Because, to me, that’s not living!
          What’s the point of living to be a 100 if all your life you just followed rules & did nothing crazy? This book talks about living more than a 100, but aren’t we supposed to add life to numbers & not numbers to life? So, no. This was not my thing. I would rate it at 2/5 at best.

Watching TV shows & movies is an integral part of my life. It’s what my weekend plans are made of. So, here we are!

Game of Thrones:

(Includes Spoilers.)
I want to take a second & talk about Game of Thrones, which is the most important thing going on in my life currently. I wake up at 6:30 AM on a Monday morning to watch it live & talk about it for the rest of the week to whoever listens. I read about its theories & I laugh on its memes. The hopes & expectations that I don't have from my own life, those I have from this show.
          Talking about the first 2 episodes, there were a solid let down for me. There was no action at all. Everyone thought that they were creating a base for all the main character deaths so that we will feel more horrible later. But, then they go ahead & don’t kill anyone. So, yeah, I’m disappointed because my favorites are still alive.
        Yes, I love how Arya is the one to kill Night King. I choose to ignore the flaws in it. But, apart from that, so many disappointments. The dark episode when you can barely see anything. The most hyped Battle of Winterfell was such a normal battle with not much content. I went ahead & watched the 40-minute YouTube video of how they made this allegedly epic third episode. I understood that they wanted to portray a lot of things. It’s just that it didn’t fall through the way they wanted it to. Hence, all three episodes are 80% disappointment. All comments on this are welcome!

Made in Heaven:
While I was in Kochi, I ended up watching this entire series. It was brilliant, entertaining & also real. It focused on so many things we see today, like, infidelity, LGBTQ discrimination, class difference & so on. It was a refreshing show!

The Upside:
The Upside is this amazing movie starring Kevin Hart, Bryan Cranston & Nicole Kidman. You just have to watch it!

If you remember, I had made this list of 19 things to do in 2019 & I am slowly & steadily reaching there. While some things seem to be impossible to achieve, others are quite closer to completion. One of the most important things I wanted to do was donate clothes which I finally did. I think I must have donated more than 20 pieces of clothing which felt really amazing.
            Secondly, watching TED Talks every week is going great! I am doing it weekly without ever missing out on it. And, lastly, I have cut down a bit of online shopping. So, I’m proud of that.

So, that was April for me! Travelling, Game of Thrones, Reading & again Game of Thrones! What was your April like? What are your May Goals? Let me know in the comments below!!
Until next time,

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