July 28, 2012

Two in One

This year I received a couple of awards from fellow bloggers and I must say it kind of makes me feel good. This is despite the fact that I'm a major cynic when it comes to this whole receiving an award and tagging business. This is because I love short-cuts and sometimes I think things in such a way that my short-cuts sound really evil. I mean, consider these awards. Its out there on the internet right? There was a time when I saw so many bloggers tagging their friends and giving them awards like these and during that time, I wasn't at the receiving end of any of these awards. So what was my evil short-cut plan? My mind egged me to copy a couple of Liebster's and Versatile's and "pretend" to receive them from bloggers that didn't exist (I was sure most of the readers wouldn't even click on the blogs that I have tagged to double check them!). Guilty!! But I guess my laziness pretty much saved me from carrying out this evil-master plan. And that's the only time I'm really ever grateful for my lazy,comatose state.

Obviously, I'm wrong about this misconception. People really do give interest. And it's never really about how many awards you post on your blog. It's all about how much you have put yourself out there that makes fellow bloggers actually consider you as a possibility to award something like this in order to show their appreciation. Everybody likes a bit of appreciation now and then. But it only makes sense when you are actually recognized and not pretentious about it (Neha's mind, are you listening/reading what I'm typing right now??). 

And so here is my appreciation for my friends who thought I should receive this. A mighty thanks to you guys.

Thank you Ajay for this cool award. (I'm about a few months late in posting it, apologies!!)

Thank you Sreeja for this lovely award. (I'm not so late in posting this, finally coming out of my laziness!)

Some rules to these awards:

1.If you are tagged/ nominated you have to post 11 facts about yourself.
2.Then you answer the 11 questions the tagger has given you & make 11 questions for the people you are going to tag.
3.Tag 11 more Bloggers.
4.Tell the people you tagged that you did.

11 lousy facts about me:-

1) I tell myself to never listen to myself but I end up listening to myself most of the times.
2) My major current goal in life- to lose some weight and to improve my health.
3) I love cats. They melt my heart and make me laugh and I really need to laugh these days.
4) I have a tendency to make my life difficult for me to live in. I'm plagued by negativism and pessimism.
5) I like to be by myself. I like to keep my mouth shut and just be silent. I would really like to control my anger but sometimes it just goes haywire and people in my path will get its full impact. 
6) As a complete contradiction to the above sentence, I love hanging out with my friends, going to parties with them, getting drunk if an opportunity presents itself; but it's less these days as everybody is busy with their careers.
7) I love to travel. I would love to go on a trekking or hiking soon.
8) I hate being lazy but at the same time I love being lazy (I'm crazy, I know!).
9) I love Maggie. I realized I'm addicted to it when recently I went on a 10 day fasting and all I dreamed about was delicious, steaming, hot Maggie.
10) I'm running out of facts (even this is a fact!).
11) I love to write, duh!!

11 Questions for me:

1. What is the most important thing in your life?
~To be happy.

2. Would you dedicate your time for society if chance comes, even if it is difficult?
~Yes, I would.

3. What is that one thing you would like to get from life?
~A lot of luck, will power and optimism.

4. If ever you are alone in this whole world...then?
~Suits me, I like being alone. But I just need my laptop, and my movie collection.

5. Who is that one person you would like to meet?(celebrity)
~Hugh Grant.

6. Your favorite genre in reading and why?
~Mysteries and Thrillers. They are very thrilling!!

7. Are advertising an influencing thing in your life,   to what extend?
~Not really, But Chocolate related ads and other junk food ads make me hungry.

8. Your favorite author?Why?
~Sidney Sheldon. He's my ultimate inspiration.

9. What is that wild thing you will do if nobody is going to judge you?
~Be Childish.

10. How much blogging means to you?
~A lot.

11. How do you discard the waste from your home?
~I give it to the garbage-man!

11 Silly Questions from me:-

1. Have you ever fallen off your bed while sleeping?
2. Do you still sleep with your Teddy Bear?
3. Which celebrity do do have a crush on right now?
4. Have you ever done something wild and crazy? If so, do tell.
5. Your favorite super-hero?
6. Your favorite child-hood cartoon character?
7. Your hobbies?
8. Your favorite Author?
9. Your favorite junk food?
10. Your favorite music band?
11. Are my questions silly and stupid?

And the 11 Bloggers I would like to tag and dedicate both the awards to:

2. Jasmeet Kukreja (http://emotestar.blogspot.in/)
7. Ghazala Hossain (http://a-blind-date.blogspot.in/)

And many more. I follow a lot of blogs but It's an enormous task to link them all and to intimate them. Nonetheless, I have finally completed this award task. I had nothing else to write as my mind is troubled with multiple issues right now and I'm attacked by overflow-ification of words! 

Thanks again and Enjoy your day!!

July 12, 2012

Thoughts and Acknowledgments

Okay, the title sounds like I'm about submit an abstract to my project. But the good news is, it's just a bunch of random thoughts from my side and I promise to keep this post short. 

Well, I don't need to say much, the picture below speaks for itself. Yesterday, I finally received my long awaited prize from Indiblogger for participating in Stayfree- Time to Change contest. I was one of the five winners who won a watch. And finally I have a watch that I can wear as a jewellery. It's quite heavy as it's of a broader make. It was tough for me to choose the best watch as there were so many fabulous watches under Esprit and other brands. The reason I chose an Esprit brand is because, when the result was announced that I had won a prize a few months back, I literally googled every watch present under Esprit and just fell in love with the brand. 

I must confess, this is my first win ever in a writing contest. And this is the first time ever I've received a BIG prize. I used to win small prizes for drawing and painting stuffs at school level. But currently, I've lost touch towards painting. But I don't want to lose touch when it comes to writing. I always used to write but never figured that this could be seen as a talent too. No, I still can't completely agree that I'm talented at writing. I have a lot to learn. 

But little milestones such as these, truly helps boost up my perception towards something better in the future.

That's that. And as a side-note, I won't be blogging much for the next week. I'm going to a place where I can access internet only through my phone. So will miss out on a week's worth of stories from fellow bloggers. Hope to catch up with you all when I return.

Cheers :)

July 10, 2012

Hair Scare and Dove to the Rescue.

I have to admit that I have been a careless teenager. Especially when it came to my hair. 7 years ago, during my prime teen years, I was more of an outdoors kind of person and since I am blessed with long, straight and slightly wavy hair, I hardly thought I needed to take care of it. It was just hair on my head and I used to pull it into a pony tail, without even combing my hair at times, before venturing out of the door.

During lunch hours at college, all my friends talked about was hair-fall sufferings and also show-casing excessive concerns about a few gray hairs here and there that they all seemed to be plagued upon. I usually got lost in my own thoughts during these conversations. The only thing I used to be concerned about during those days was when the class hours would end and what snack granny would have prepared back home. And thus during one of those “boring” conversations, one of my friend brought me back from my “snack dream” with a pin pricking question: “So, Neha. You used to have such thick, lovely hair when you were in school. What happened to it?”

And her words reverberated all around my empty brain as this type of question to moi was a first and I replied to her after two minutes of shocked silence. “What? What do you mean? My hair has always been like this even back in high school.”

“No it wasn’t”, pitched in my other friend to my deep misery, “I bet you can’t put two thick plaits like you used to put during those days.”

“Of course I can, but I won’t. This is college for Christ’s sake. I don’t want seniors to come and rag me for going all “gauramma” here ok?” I replied irritably.

“Ok, then let’s go to the rest room and check out if your plaits are as thick as they used to be.  You can take them off again”.

So off they dragged me to the ladies room and I knew I had gotten myself into a spot I didn’t want to get into the first place. As one of my friend finished braiding my hair, I turned towards the mirror and I was shocked to see how much volume had been lost in those plaits.

“My god, is this some kind of a joke?” I exclaimed.

The other girls tried hard not to giggle but they consoled me and from then onwards even I got into those long and painful conversations of protecting one’s hair by sharing various homemade remedies.

Each week I tried new things. My mom and grandma worked judiciously by applying coconut oil, neem oil, lemon-mix oil et al to my scalp and hair. And as a result, my already oily skin got oilier by the day and my forehead started to house the dreaded pimples. Shampoos are not so good at removing oil from hair and mom always warned me from resorting to different shampoos as they contain a lot of chemicals. As a result, once a week I had to resort to Shikhakai powder and my allergy towards the irritable thing increased. Shikhakai is a really good natural product for hair, but it’s a nightmare for those who are allergic to its smell. My skin used to turn red and itch at the contact of it, and so I had to stop using it eventually.

After 5 months of this horror show, I literally used to run away whenever either my mom or granny used to come to me with a bowl of oil for my scalp. I had had enough of trying to take care of my hair. My hair had definitely grown longer at a faster pace because of these age-old oil therapies but I was definitely not satisfied with the torture I was enduring.

Anyway, with the hectic classes and assignments and other things ruling my life, I barely had time to have a decent breakfast, let alone spend five extra minutes to tend my hair. As this hectic schedule continued, my carelessness towards my already unmaintained hair grew, if possible to another level.
Two years later, I had finally graduated from 12th and was in my first year of engineering. Two years if carelessness regarding my health due to various factors like hectic college and tuition hours, tensions, eating junk food rather than fruits and veggies and lack of proper sleep had finally taken its toll on me. Obviously I had gained weight and keeping that aside, my lovely hair looked less lovely now a days. And damn those gray hairs. I could see them hiding amidst my tresses, almost evading my notice. And though my hair was long, it looked really thin and dull these days. The dandruff problem was going out of control now and it became really hard to maintain because after every head bath, my hair would get oily and itchy by next day. And I wasn’t even using oil for my hair!

I must confess I used to jump from shampoo to shampoo very frequently those days. In a year, I might have used five to six different brands of shampoos in a vague attempt to control hair-fall and dandruff issues. Obviously it was all those heavy chemicals that were causing all this damage.

I had had enough of all this shampoo business. But there was still one shampoo that had escaped from my notice somehow.

One day at a shopping mart, I was causally walking down the aisle, in search of the Dove soap. I found my Dove Exfoliating Bathing Bar and in the next shelf I found the Dove Deodorant that I had been meaning to use since a month. Then I remembered that the Dove Deep Pure Oil-Cleansing Face Wash I purchased the last time was almost used up. So off it went into my shopping bag. Then in the next row, I came face to face with Dove range of shampoos and suddenly I was hit with a strange epiphany. How on earth did I end up using almost all of the Dove products except the shampoo and the conditioner?

It was like the answer was right there and I had failed to take note of it before. I literally worship the dove soap and the dove deodorants, mainly because of their mildness and lovely smell and the soap really gives my skin a smooth effect. Obviously if the soap and the deodorants worked, then shampoo should work too.

After my last Shikakhai and horrible chemically inflicted shampoo scenario, a new shampoo from a product company that I was already familiar about was a welcoming sight. So I judiciously bought the blue Dove Damage Therapy Shampoo and Conditioner.

This time, I was determined to make things work for me. So it was bye-bye for most of the junk food. And a hello to all the fruits and veggies. I started to feel better health wise and my oily skin condition was finally reduced and my hair was starting to breath now.

And you know what? Within the next two months I could clearly see a positive result on my hair. It was growing long again and hair-fall had reduced visibly and the split-end problem was almost nil. But the grey hair was still there. Shampoos can’t rectify that. So from last two years, I’ve started visiting the salon to get a nice hair colour from a really good brand. And I feared Dove might not be able to help me out with coloured hair, but as it turns out, I just needed to change from the Intense Repair Shampoo to the Advanced Colour Care Shampoo.

And now my hair has more volume, and the colour treated hair looks better than ever before. All thanks to Dove and some common sense to maintain a healthy diet from my part.

And that was the end to all my hair problems. All is well that ends well. What say?

P.S: Technically I can compare Dove products to Google. When it comes to Google, apart from using the Chrome browser and the Google Search, people end up using Gmail, YouTube, Google+ and Picasa web albums. Even Dove is similar to Google when it comes to its universal usage. Women are most likely to end up using Dove soaps, deodorants, body lotions, face wash and of course Dove range of Shampoos and conditioners. 

This post is written for the "Dove Damage Therapy Contest" and my post on Indiblogger can be found here.
This contest is sponsored by:

July 08, 2012

Neha’s Journal hits a century.

This is not a post on my hundredth post. I’m still 32 posts behind to reach my hundredth post and I intend to reach it with posts that matter to me. This post is dedicated to all my friendly readers who visit my blog from time to time and assure me that I’m not the only one reading my posts. Recently, my blog celebrated its one year anniversary and as a gift to myself, I duly noted that about a 100+ fellow blogging friends have been kind enough to follow my page. In the first month that I started to blog, I had no idea about the blogging world or how it worked. I was under the impression that I would post whatever I felt like writing and people would visit and comment on my post. Obviously it doesn’t work that way and I’m glad it doesn’t work that way too.

Because if things became that easy, I wouldn’t have developed a broader perspective of reaching out to the diverse family of bloggers and I definitely wouldn’t have learnt a thing or two about the different lives and culture and history and the photography that the other bloggers had in store for readers like me. Over the months, I have learnt to be humble and definitely I know it now, that blogging is not like Facebook or any other social networking platform where the sole purpose of such platforms is self-promotion and a desperate seek to achieve popularity.

No. Blogging is a much more sophisticated and yet a friendly platform. Indeed, bloggers blog with hopes of gaining many readers. But it’s definitely worth it because here, all we are promoting is our words. Our hard earned sentences weaved together to produce an interesting insight into our individual lives. It’s very easy to take a picture of ourselves and to post it online and to get likes and comments, but definitely the end result of it won’t be as sweet as getting appreciated for bringing out the writer in us and showing the world a glimpse of our intellectualism. That, my friends is the real fruit of blogging.

So as a thank you to all my fellow bloggers and friends and future blogging friends whom I look forward to meet and exchange a comment or two, here is a poem dedicated to you all. Cheers!!

A journey that began
Not so long ago;
It triggered a dream,
A dream that evaded its existence.
But a dream, that finally began to unravel
Letter by letter,
Word by word,
Sentence by sentence.
Finally, I saw my dream
Pouring onto the pages;
Pages that I hold close
To my heart.
Pages... I never imagined,
Would make their way
Into the lives of the many individuals,
My fellow bloggers,
My mentors and my friends,
Whom I met during this worthwhile journey.
So far, the journey has been fruitful
And I intend to continue it,
For days and weeks and years to come.
I am forever grateful for all your support.

July 07, 2012


Let’s not deny it. You and I both have committed multiple murders recently and we are going to continue to judiciously murder in the future too. What murder is this, do you ask? Don’t be shocked. Luckily we won’t be sent to prison for this kind of murder. I’m talking about a crime, which falls under the section of “defamation of words”. Yes, with the advent of SMS, chat rooms and text messages, we all have victimised the English Language by murdering its basic word-structure. If you are still not getting me, just get your smart phone or any other mobile device that you use and open your inbox. In the recent conversations there is a 99% chance that you are bound to find, if not all, but at least a few of the following words that would have been typed in short-form to make them look like this:

And= nd
Come= “cum” (I mean, come on!! We all know there is a whole other meaning to the “cum” word!)
Coming? = cummin? (No thank you!!)
What= wat
This= dis
When= wen
The= d
Your= ur
Tomorrow= tom (as in tom-cat?)
Should= shud
Could= cud
Don’t= don (you want me to “don” my dress or call in the mafia?)

And the list goes on. This is a serious crime you know. Over the last ten to fifteen years, we have become so accustomed to the “easy and short” usage of commonly used words in daily life that it has become more of a bad habit now a days. Short words are fine to use, when we are in a hurry to send a message to a friend as fast as possible. At times like that, short lingo is enough to make the communication. But that doesn’t mean they should be cultivated to be used on daily basis, especially on formal occasions. Now there has come a point where people forget the line between a formal and an informal letter.

Consider an average, short-lingo addict who is typing a very formal letter to an associate. And this is how it goes;

Respected sir,

As Ive bin caught up wid a lite fever, its nt possible 4 me 2 attnd d functn on d said date. Kindly understand n oblige.

Yours truly,

So n so.

There is definitely nothing formal about this formal letter. The excessive usage of short-lingo is slowly deteriorating our brain from using the actual English words that are classy, wholesome to pronounce, to speak and to see.

I know SMS language is the all new “it” language that people, especially the teens and young adults are flaunting now a days. But studies show that if this type of sub-culture continues, the short form might as well be adapted as the revised English language with the future generations.

English is often called as a mad man’s language because, there are words that sound the same but mean different like “hare” and “hair”. Then there are words that sound something and are spelled with completely different letters like the words “tough” and “through” where the “gh” is merely there for no reason. So no language is perfect. Even English is perfectly flawed. But it has been built and well organised over the past generations. There are many words that come under this language that define subtlety and sophistication. English language is a classic, universal language. But times are changing and so is the usage of English words. In my opinion, people are becoming lazy to type the whole word. Instead they are resorting to the SMS culture even for formal occasions.

This is mainly affecting the children’s Basic English knowledge. There are cases where students often forget while writing long answers and resort to using short-form words such as “r for are”, “u for you” and "bcoz for because". Maybe short-lingo is a popular culture out in the modern society but they are definitely formidable to be used when one is expected to actually write on a sheet of paper.

Even I have done such horrible mistakes while writing letters and even during class internals. And this is mainly because of the constant texting and chatting with friends on the internet. That is why I started blogging. So that at least in my posts I wouldn't resort to the SMS culture. And this has helped me improve over the days. Now a days, even while I text or chat on Facebook, I make sure I type properly. Of course there are times, I feel lazy and use the short-hand version. But that’s okay. As long as I don’t use that form of language in my E-mails, letters and comments, I’m fine with it.

Words mean a lot to me and I hate to see them get stripped off and murdered off their essence like this. So I’m making the following two similar requests:

Please stop hurting the words. Use them fully and completely and if you respect the language, that in turn shows your respect to the person reading it.


PLZ stp hurtin d wurds. Use thm full n cumplte n if u respt d lang, thn u respt d persn readin’t.

Now why don’t you decide which makes more sense to read and to feel? The former or the latter??


P.S: Trust me, you don’t want to forget your grammar like this cat here who texts his pals a lot!! ;)

July 04, 2012

Everybody loves puppies

I’m basically a cat person. I adore them. And dogs? Not so much. But I can’t stay away from puppies. I mean come on, when you look at their eyes; you can’t help but make that ridiculous noise, “awww”. Nobody can dare escape from their stubborn cuteness.

The other day, my little cousin sisters begged me to accompany them near their granny’s house where they had seen five newly born puppies, alone as their momma seemed to have abandoned them. They also showed me a photo of one of the puppies. The little guy was damn cute and I mustered all my energy to say I have got some work at the house. Undeterred, the girls pulled my lazy brother from his computer games and off they went to bring along the little brown puppy. When they arrived, I was the first to run outside and to pick up the little guy and when we saw the little thing cuddling in my arms, me, the girls and my brother unanimously exclaimed: “Awww, he’s so cute”.

But the poor guy was shivering as he was separated from his brothers and he could barely walk on the floor. We knew we shouldn’t have brought him because as the minutes went by we all were getting attached to him but none of us were in a position to completely take care of the little pup. The girls went to our granny and told her they had brought a new visitor to the house and granny immediately knew what we were up to. Ten years ago, she had seen me and my brother do the exact same thing of bringing home stray puppies and trying to “look-after” them. But to tell the truth, it’s better not to bring any strays home, as they are used to survive outside (if they are lucky that is!) and locking them up in a garage only makes it worse for them and for everyone else in the house. They are after-all little babies (doggie version) and they cry a lot.

The poor pup was whining now and we tried pacifying him with some milk. I guess he was very hungry as he gulped down the entire cup. And before we knew it, he was running haphazardly inside the gate, searching for a spot to pee. And he did dirty the veranda gruesomely. All the more reason not to bring home stray puppies. Cleaning up the mess and all, I would have happily done that ten years ago, but now I’d rather run away!

So with a heavy heart in the end, we all took the puppy back from where it was taken from. And thank god his mother was there with her other pups. At least we got exempted from the guilt feeling of abandoning the puppy on its own.

I've shared this post with Camera Critters.
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