Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The awesome party at Chandana's home

Last night was an awesome, awesome night.

Chandana held a party at her home again, and this time out of the 16 girls of 8-D, 12 people showed up, including me.

Chandana lives in a huge compound that has a clubhouse, restaurant, shop and playgrounds filled with swings and slides at every corner. It’s practically a gateway to heaven.

After everyone came, we had some starters, which were chocolate chip cookies, tuna sandwiches, laddoos, chicken puffs, fish pakodas and soup, all home-made by Chandu’s mom and totally delicious.

When we reached the first playground during our tour of the compound, everyone took off like miniatures of Usain Bolt for the swings. People who snagged them first swung for some time. Then someone would jump on quickly after them.

I swung a couple of times, and then got off when some younger children were looking at us. I felt pretty ridiculous. But hey, who can resist swings?

The tour of the compound took a little more than an hour with quick stops on the playgrounds and a trip to a small shop. Chandu lead us inside and we stood there feeling confused.

“We don’t have any money”, I whispered to Chandana. “We don’t need any” she said. “This is free.” After those 3 words came out of her mouth, everyone practically looted the store of ice-creams, chips, Pepsi and juice.

Eeshta, our old classmate who is in China now, also called on my phone and I passed my phone around for everyone else to chat with her.

Dinner was pizza from Pizza! Pizza! and out of the 4 types, I tried 3. We watched the horror movie ‘Mama’. Technically, only few people watched because the others had learned their lesson after watching ‘The Conjuring.’ Most of us swiped through the photos we took on our phones, or covered our eyes and ears. Sadly for me, my phone’s battery soon died and I had to go for the latter.

A short story with a very reasonable moral-

“Once upon a time, a girl called Faiza invited all her classmates to her home for a party. Everyone was very excited and they sat down to watch the movie called ‘The Conjuring.’ They had all thought that they were fearless and reckless, but after this very scary movie, they nearly wet their pants and did not sleep for a week. The end.”

Moral: Never watch a horror movie unless you are absolutely sure you can sleep at night with the lights off. 

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Kindle & Pebble

What do you get when you do the following equation?

Kindle + Smart watch + Janaki = ?

I think the answer is pretty obvious, though.

Kindle + Smart watch + Janaki =  :-)  :-)

I had been waiting a long time since we ordered these 2 from the Amazon  (well, not that long, but time feels slow sometimes). Dad explained the full process of how it gets shipped to me and it seems like a lot of work. 

My new Pebble Smart watch is pretty sleek and cool. It allows me to download apps and watchfaces on it through Mom’s phone.

My Kindle Paperwhite, on the other hand is very useful for reading books. It gives you the actual feeling of reading a book and has a lot more advantages.  For example, it is eco-friendly, thin and small so that we can easily slip it into a handbag or backpack and also helps to look up the definition of difficult words.

I borrowed the second book of the “Hunger Games” trilogy from the library. It’s called “Catching Fire”, the first few parts were a bit boring but it became interesting afterwards. I was not able to understand “Mockingjay” without the second book.

Speaking of “Hunger Games”, the second book of the “Divergent” series is actually pretty boring. “Insurgent “does not have the suspense or the thrill of “Divergent” and it’s really long. But the movie trailer released yesterday.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Black Friday

Sunday my FA-3 is starting. I’m just praying it gets over soon. After that we have our winter vacation for which I will be spending my time doing “Aaaaaaagh………” and relaxing.

Now that I have finished ‘Blood of Olympus’ too, I think it’s a bit sad that Leo’s friends never really found out he was alive.

Apparently today is “Black Friday”. If you stand outside a shop in the US, you will probably get trampled.

Last evening at badminton class, our teacher made me and Raksha as team captains. One thing you should take care of- always try to win. Otherwise all the blame goes to you.

But we were able to win 2 games out of 3.

Once, Anne was a captain at school in our group for a project, There were an overall of 4 team captains in the class. Anne had me and Chandana too in her team. We weren’t really worried because we had all this right in the bag, but Anne was a bit nervous when it was time for submission. We didn’t make her feel better when we asked our teacher if Anne was the one who would get the blame instead of us if our project messed up. She said ‘Yes’.

My Dad always tells me that I wait till the last minute to do projects that need his help. But, seriously, is Saturday 10:3 pm that late for remembering something. Is it? Is it?

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Hello again, AlHokair Land!

Chandana and Nanditha screamed as their ride turned them upside down and continued to whirl. I watched them on it along with some of our other classmates, feeling amused. Chandana had asked me to come on it. I had said ‘no way’ after watching it turn the riders upside down, sideways and still continue whirling. I knew I would puke if I went on it.

Chandana looked just terrified, and she was holding her restraint really tightly, and Nanditha was no more different.

After they got out, they looked like they had been in a mini- tornado that had thrown them off later. Chandana’s hair was looking like she had an electric shock. Nanditha was hugging her stomach.  Terrin nearly fell on me.

Nanditha told me later while we were at the end of the long queue for the boat ride “You can’t be scared of every ride. You could have come with us.” I remembered their frightened expressions and laughed “Yeah, you guys had a lot of fun on that last ride, right?”  

We then went on Hollywood. We had gone on it last time too, and my legs had nearly flown off. I didn’t see why Chandana and Nanditha wanted to go on it so badly again, but I went on it anyway.

This time my legs were no problem but my arm muscles had started to pain. I had grown much taller than the last time, so I didn’t slide off and my legs did not swing that much either. But I had been holding my restraint really tightly.

I really wanted to go on the ghost ride, so we went to “Treasures of Africa.” It was kind of like a circular ride, not like the train we usually see. Each could carry 4 people and it would slowly whirl so that we would be able to see everything from all sides. I, Chandana, Nanditha and Suha went on. I didn’t really see how zombies and mummies could be treasures though. It didn’t scare us at all, but it was actually kind of fun. We laughed at a flamingo that turned suddenly when we got close. We stared at a mummy lying in a swinging hammock. We pointed at a gorilla that jumped up like a jack-in-the-box.

Of course no one could forget the bumper cars either. My car did not go straight, it went reverse because the steering wheel was not right. I bumped other people more than they bumped me.

I had brought 40 riyals I had been saving and used 10 to buy a small pocket fan that really lit up when it worked. I just loved it. Others bought necklaces and other stuff or got temporary tattoos.

We were just goofing around in school today. Tomorrow there is the talent show. Alaina and Nabila were practicing for a song they were doing together. When the microphone was on, I snatched it from Alaina and said ‘Testing  1,2,3….”. Rabia grabbed it and said ‘’Sup’? And when Alaina got it back and said ‘What is wrong with you all?!’ everyone heard it. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

The long haul and lollipop

I am just so happy today!!!!

We went to Jarir bookstore and bought two of some of my top favorite books.

I finished "The Long Haul" and it was really funny. I just want to say that Greg and his family should avoid road trips. I have never heard of such a complicated trip.

When Nida was reading "House of Hades", she did not want anyone to ruin the story for her. She probably should not have said that, 'cause that just made everyone tells her the plot while she plugged her fingers inside her ears. The conversation went something like this:

Manasy:      See, at the end, Percy and Annabeth are…
Nida:          Stop it!
Me:             They get…
Nida:           I hate you!

It was the same for Manasy while reading "Allegiant".

Me:              Something really big happens at the end.
Manasy:       I don't want to hear about it!
Rakshanda:  Tris dies.
Manasy:       Aaaargh!!
Me:              Its true.
Manasy:       La La La.. I can't hear you!!!

Ever since Dad bought his Nexus 5 with KitKat, he spends his time on it and still he hasn't discovered about all its features. Today morning, he got the new Android “Lollipop".

We are guessing about the next name of android starting with M, and Mom said “Muffin”, I said “Maltesers” or “M&M”, and Dad said “Milkshake”.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Aaahhh! Memories ....

Do you know that we are going to have a trip to Al- Hokair next week? We had gone there before 2 years back .Chandana and I can describe our experience so well and vividly you would think it happened only 2 years ago.

Anne has gone to India this year and joined a school there. We miss her but we still stay in contact through Gmail and Whatsapp. On the previous trip to Al-Hokair, her hands were overflowing with all types of goodies. She had cotton candy, a few roses, some packets of chicken popcorn and a wonky hat and was juggling all of them. She left to buy more but not before she gave me and Chandana two packets of chicken popcorn to hold. She wanted to take everything back home.

But me and Chandana really didn’t get the part of “holding”. So we said a ‘thanks’, and were wolfing down chicken popcorn while watching people scream on a scary ride called Can-Can. It whirls around really fast and the rider’s seats also go way back, so for some time you can see their feet. We waved at them as we watched Aamna, Linda and Avantika scream their heads off.

When Anne came back, she was like “Waaiitt!!” and we looked at her with our mouths full, confused. Then only after she explained did we understand.

And then we had gone on this ride called Hollywood, and it nearly turned our legs into jelly. We all had our arms around each other, not knowing who was supporting whom. A girl’s shoe also had flown off. I was saying “O Hare Krishna! Hare Krishna!”

Chandana says this time she wants to go on the roller coaster. She wants me to try it with her. I said no, I wouldn’t go on the roller coaster even in my dreams. But I would be there to give her my ring which has a picture of Krishna on it, wish her good luck and watch her scream “Stop the ride!!!!”. I am an awesome BFF.

Then again there’s Columbus, which is a pretty common ride. It is a big ship which goes to and fro really high. When Mom and I once went on it in a mall when I was 6, she had never tried another ride again.

I am also going to buy cotton candy. Last time Chandana had bought it. We planned on eating it in the class, but since Aamna felt like she was going to throw up after going on Can-Can, we had to take the cotton candy out of it’s over and give the cover to her.

Once, Chandana’s brother bought a chick from a mall. He wanted to give it some freedom and let it wonder outside their villa in the compound. A few minutes later, the chick, which was outside their  home, was now inside the belly of a vicious cat. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Mansaf for dinner

As Dad opened the front door, I danced around him like an excited puppy. He had bought dinner and I was starving, which was probably my own fault.

We had a traditional Jordanian dish called Mansaf, and it looked beautiful to me. It was delicious too. But Mom did not fall in love with it as much as I did.

In December we are having our annual day, and nobody knows who the chief guest is going to be yet. I want to do a group song, so I am going for song selections.

Since Annual days are important, the school timings are usually extended so that the participating kids can practice. This time, the timings have been extended from 12:40 to 1:00.

Do you remember that Malaysia trip I told you about? Well, now it has been cancelled because very few people are going. So, we get to have a normal trip this year. Everyone is guessing that it will probably be to Al-Hokair again since most of us wanted to go there again. Besides, you don’t get cotton candy at Star City. Nobody wants to go to a mall either.

Now is actually the perfect time for a trip. Since it’s the beginning of winter, the temperature is just right; neither too hot, nor too cold. When we went to Star City, it was so hot, you could have fried an egg on our heads. Out of the 10 riyals I had, I wasted 5 riyals on buying cold water.

The best part of going on trips is that if you carry about a minimum of 10 to 15 riyals with you, you can buy something from the stores, from cotton candy to cocktails to wonky hats and glittery plastic sunglasses. And going on lame shopping is actually kind of fun.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

3 movies and 2 books

A complete week of Hajj holidays has been over and now it is the second week. As Dad too has holidays for one week, he wakes me up every morning in a different way. One day, he shook me awake and sat next to me and kept talking until I forced myself out of bed. Another time, he placed the alarm clock under my bed. It did not wake me up, but instead it woke Mom.

 I watched 3 movies this week- “The Syrian Bride”, “Psycho”, and “Baran”. After watching “Psycho”, I got a bit scared and never moved an inch away from my parents. But that was only for a day.

“Psycho” is a classic 1960 horror-thriller movie directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It wasn't the plot, but the sudden-scary music that really got me. Seriously. Like ‘Scree! Scree! Scree!’

‘‘The Syrian Bride’’ was full of suspense, mostly like “What’s going to happen? Will she be able to go? Huh? Huh?”

“Baran” is very touching and sad, but it is funny also sometimes.

According to Mom, I am now old enough to watch the type of movies they watch. “Just close your eyes if there are any kissing scenes.”

Actually, in every children’s movie, including animated ones, there are always few kissing scenes.

The latest books I have read are “My Brother, My Sister and I” by Yoko Kawashima Watkins and “The Tulip Touch” by Anne Fine.

The first book is a touching story about the difficult period Yoko Kawashima experienced with her siblings during the World War II in Japan and the latter shows us at the end that even if they are our best friends, we should always try and make them understand when they do something wrong and help them before things get too far.  

Monday, September 29, 2014

Trip to Malaysia: A missed field trip

Our school, instead of usually taking us to theme parks or the rides at malls, has planned a 5-day trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  

We were all like “WHAT??!! NOOO!! AAWWW!!!” 

Our class was in a state of depression, confusion and anger. This was because of three reasons-

A) We did not want to go somewhere alone for 5 days, without our parents.

B) We already knew what the answer would be when we would go home. “NO”.

C) We had just missed a field trip and now we would have to wait till next year.

My Grandpa told me, “You are not yet old enough to go to another country alone, but we can always go together as family.”

After seeing the movie “The Conjuring”, I avoided doors, closets, taking long showers, staying somewhere alone for more than 30 seconds, thinking about the scariest parts of the movie and a lot more. But that was only for a few days, thankfully. I was already getting tired of my father doing “Boo!” to me and me screaming.

I was describing the beginning of the movie to Chandana who had missed that part, and when I said “Boo!”-

“Aaaaagh! Janu, I will kill you if you do that again!”

I got a look that said “Why would you scare me like that? “, plus a shove for all my trouble.

The latest book I have read is “The Hunger Games”, by Suzanne Collins. In a way, the writing and the plot resemble “Divergent”. Everything is full of action. In “Divergent”, Tris knows how to use a gun. In “The Hunger Games”, Katniss uses a bow and arrows.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Bathroom raid - A humorous incident

We thought we saw her running into the bathroom with tear-filled eyes. That’s where Alaina, Linda and I went.

When we entered we pounded on every stall, yelling “TERRIN! TERRIN!”

Most of them were empty.

In one of them, a girl who seem to be in third grade poked her head out and looked at us curiously.

When we reach the last stall on the end, we banged on the door and said “Terrin, we know you’re in there. Come out.”

A voice that sounded like Terrin’s replied. “There is no Terrin in here”

Linda said “If you don’t come out, we will come in”.

“I already told you, there is no Terrin in here.”

I thought Linda was going to break down the door, but before she could, a girl, but not Terrin, looked at us and snapped “WHAT!??

We all screamed, Linda shouted a “Sorry!” and we ran out. I don’t think I’ve ever run this fast in my life.

It was Maths class. I was the first to open the door and get in. I saw Terrin sitting there calmly and doing her sums. I wanted to strangle her, but I didn’t get the opportunity.

Later when we told Terrin the story, she laughed a lot and said “If you ever go and looking for me in the bathroom again, I will always be in the third stall”.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Horror movie at weekend party

The music got faster. But the scene was very slow. Slowly, then slowly from inside the TV -


The people watching the movie-


My classmates and I were at Faiza’s home, where we were watching “The Conjuring”. Out of the 17 people in the class, there were 9 of us lying on the bed and holding each other’s hands and screaming occasionally. Our other classmates had not been able to come.

Originally, the party timings were 5-7:30 but everyone stayed till 9:30. We phoned our parents telling them we would be late.

In one of the last parts, where some people with cameras come to record the ghosts, Rakshanda said “O cute guy, your youth should be not wasted. Try not to die. Please save your awesomeness.” Fortunately for Rakshanda, he did not die.

Chandana was squeezing my hand. Sauda was squeezing my other hand. This meant that both my hands were occupied. It also meant, both my hands were becoming sweaty.

After we finished half of the movie, we went to the living room and had burgers, biriyani, cake and Coke. The food was really great,especially the biriyani. At the ending of the movie we had ice-cream. No one would stand anywhere alone in the house. Terrin asked Manasy to stand outside the bathroom. When I went to wash my hands, I dragged Rabia with me. Suha seemed to be the only one who was calm.

The part that really creeped us all out was when the movie said that this was based on a true story. That was just about enough for us. We screamed “WHAT??!!”

Last night, after the party, when we got home, I begged my parents to let me sleep with them for just that one night. This morning I washed my face in the kitchen sink and not in the bathroom since there is no mirror in the kitchen.

It’s kind of funny, ‘cause when I looked at my Google+ page this morning, the first post from Tanya was-

“The 5 words that scare the hell out of me in a horror movie are ‘Based on a true story’.”

Friday, September 12, 2014

Le Chateau, Riyadh - The Clown Restaurant

Out of all the restaurants I have gone, the weirdest one is definitely Le Chateau. 

With a French name, Italian breakfast and Chinese menu, this is a very confused restaurant.

The food here is just, okay. It’s not really great and it’s not too bad either. The restaurant looks really weird too. After seeing it, I took the opportunity to name it “The Clown Restaurant.”

Just yesterday we had our class assembly. I was for the poem. Nida was doing the anchoring. When it was my turn, my hands were shaking a little while holding the microphone. But I was able to recite the poem smoothly, giving little breaks and saying clearly.

I just don’t know why my hands were shaking. I was not nervous at all.
I am usually put for a song in an assembly. It was actually kind of the first time for me to read something out loud.

A few days back, Chandana and I were in the library and we came across a fat book called “The Book of 5001 Jokes.”

1. Sherlock Holmes- I see you are wearing your winter underwear, Watson.
Watson- Amazing, Holmes. How did you deduce that?
Sherlock Holmes- You forgot to put on your trousers.

2. What do you get when you cross a cacao bean with an elk?
You get a chocolate mousse!

3. What letters would scare a burglar?

And a last one-

4. If a man owns all the cows in Arabia, will he become a milk sheikh?

These were some of the jokes we enjoyed the most. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Aargh!! Back-2-school after 9 days

After one more week, school’s going to reopen, which  means I have to get up early next week, which means  I don’t want to go to school, which means school is reopening, which means I have to get up early next week and ………blah blah blah.

The days passed fast, like they always do when you are having a good time. And at school, time goes so slowly and every minute feels like a day.
That’s just so…… cruel and……..unfair.

These days, the book that most of my friends are reading is “The Fault In Our Stars” by John Green. Mostly because the book has been made into a movie which was showing at the theaters, and partly because it’s popular and partly because it’s now available in almost every bookstore.

I read it too. Dad bought it for me at a store. It made me really sad at the part where (Spoiler alert) Augustus died and (Spoiler Alert) Hazel read the pages Augustus sent to Van Houton.

On our way back from India, I watched “Divergent” in the plane, on the TV screen, which is present on the back of every seat. I already have the book trilogy, written by Veronica Roth. The movie was really good. I tried to watch “Rio 2” also, but then it was time for the flight to land and I was only able to see it for a few minutes.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Monsoon rains to blazing summer

When I walked in through my front door, the first thing I got was some heat blasted into my face.

It was hot summer in Riyadh and with no air conditioning for more than a month, well, you can imagine how an ice-cream feels while melting.

For the first two days, I was in a wistful and empty-in-the-stomach-with-nothing-but-sadness-and-vacuum feeling in me. But that night we ate out at McDonalds for dinner and when I saw the Chicken Deluxe I got, somehow I started feeling happy. I don’t know how.

We had a lot of fun in India. When Kunjunni came over, my, parents, Kunjunni and I would sit in the balcony with Dad and Mom on chairs and me and Kunjunni with our feet through the railing and ask GK questions-

“How many years do you think took to build that apartment?”

“I don’t know. Wait! I think I know. Probably 2.6 years.”

“Your turn now.”

“Ok, Gandhiji’s riding on a scooter towards west. To which direction will his hair blow?”

“I don’t know. Backwards?””

“Wrong! He doesn’t have hair!”

And then it was Dad’s turn to ask a Maths question-

“If Kunjunni buys 8 Ferraris, how many Jaguars does Janaki buy? “

It left us stumped.

A few days earlier my Dad showed me an article. The heading was “The man who sold the Eiffel Tower. Twice” and it was about Victor Lustig.

Apparently he was a con man, gave clients fake money-printing machines and so on.

In India during monsoon, the clouds always look really amazing and beautiful. It’s also really nice to have raindrops falling on you and the breeze is really, really strong and cool. The sight blew me away. He he..

Saturday, July 26, 2014

How to train your croods

This is another “Kunjunni and Janaki Together Written” blog. Also known as KJTW blog.

Now, we start our story-

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, there lived 5 children. Their names were Kunji chechi, Kunjunni, Janaki. Savithri and Shanku (age wise).

Note- Kunjunni is only 6 and 8 months older than Janaki and Savithri respectively. Do not believe what he says about being a complete year older than them.

Janu, you know I am sitting here.

Well, yeah.

Well, that’s reassuring.

Now we start our reeeeaaalllll story-

Yo, this is Janaki. And ya, this is my awesome cuz Kunj-unni here. Yo dudes, he wants to write this blog with me, I hope ya guys like this.

Ok, back to reality. Reality. Reeeeaaaallllliiiiitttttty.

Reality is sometimes boring. We like to be crazy. No, no, wrong. We are wild. Just like The Croods. Only thing is that we were born in the 21st century. Not in the century when there were huge man-eating flowers, a guy called Guy, and the world went BOOM!

In our world we have dragons who are as pesky as mosquitoes sometimes. Modified from “Howto Train your Dragon .”

We also have Kunjunnis sometimes.


Puh-lease. I am after all a year-

There he goes again.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Kunji chechi's day-off

On this fine day, Kunji chechi has taken a break from school. 

She has taken the day-off due to back pain. Therefore, Kunjunni gave her the evil eye when he left for school today.

Poor Kunjunni.

Kunji chechi had fallen down at the morning assembly. She said her friends had informed her that she fell down in a funny kind of way, like a “Tom and Jerry” style. Sadly, she was on the stage in front of the microphone , therefore when she slipped, the word “AAAMMMMAAA!!!!” echoed throughout the school.

Kunjunni heard a familiar sound and that was when he realized it was his sister. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Houseboat cruise in Vembanad lake

“Is that a hen?”  “Certainly not!” ”Then what is it, smarty pants?”  ‘’It’s a rooster!” “How can you tell?” “Look at the tail and also it has some more differences like --!’’ “Oh, shut up!’’ “You’re the one who asked!” “Will you all keep it down?!” “We are moving!” “No we are not, the other boat is moving, and you just feel like it’s us because you are looking at it.” “Look, the rooster is crowing!” “Told you, it was a rooster.” “Oh darn! I forgot to take my iPad!”

We were all chatting, arguing and joking. Sitting on a comfy chair, I looked all around me. Savithri was sitting on another chair next to me, Kunjunni and Shanku were monkeying around, and Kunji chechi was admiring the view.

We all were in the houseboat, by the way and the journey had not yet started. Vembanad Lake, the largest lake in Kerala, was beneath our houseboat.

The boat, White Water Cruise, belongs to Savithri’s Valyachan and it was big and beautiful with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a living room and was very open. You could see everything from everywhere.

When it started, we could feel the strength of the wind increasing slowly. The houseboat was at first very slow. ‘Can you make it go faster?” Shanku asked our driver uncle. “I can, but not right now. You have to wait.’’

After an hour, we got bored sitting around and decided to play a game of hide and seek. Kunjunni was counting to 20 slowly, while me, Savithri and Shanku giggled and tried to find a hiding place. Savithri got inside the steam bath. I looked around but did not see any good hiding place in the room. So, I hid behind the open door of the adjoining bathroom. Shanku looked around and stood next to me. ‘’What are you doing?” I hissed. But Kunjunni had already finished counting. And as expected, he spotted us first.

Breakfast was kappa and fish curry, served hot and delicious. 3 hours later Kunjunni reported “We are having fried Karimeen for lunch, along with chicken, rice, sambar and a variety of other curries which are hot and little bit spicy.” ‘How do you know all that?” I inquired. “Have you been in the kitchen?” “The uncles there let me try everything.” And sure enough, when he disappeared after a few minutes, me, Savithri and Shanku first checked the kitchen.

The lunch was really, really yummy. There were a variety of dishes placed on the dining table. And for dessert we had slices of pineapple, which were so sweet we ate a lot. “I ate 8 pieces.” I declared. “Well, I ate 10 and they were delicious!” laughed Savithri.

In the evening, we had tea and banana fry. By then, my, Savithri’s and Kunji chechi’s hair was sticky and wet, so we went to the bigger bedroom with a huge mirror to comb our hair. We had some fun, trying to plait others hair. I and Savithri weren’t that good at plaiting but Kunji chechi could do it beautifully and very stylish so we let her do ours too.

Altogether, this was a memorable trip which everyone enjoyed, from the young to the old. Or in other words, from Shanku to our grandparents. 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Nara Speaking!

This blog post is really special because it has been written by not just me, but also with my cousin Kunjunni.

So, right now, Kunjunni is sitting next to me, pondering on what to write. He actually has never seen someone BWIA (Blog Writing In Action). Therefore, he is going to try it out too.

Hi, I am Kunjunni here (also known as Narayanan, Rock star Nara, Detective Nara etc). A few days back, there was an exhibition held at my school, Chinmaya Vidyalaya. We had to prepare 2 charts and the topics were “History of music” and “Father of music”, Purandara Dasa.  
As my friends and I were roaming around, we met Janu, listening carefully to a girl explaining about DNA. She said she would see our charts later as she wanted to check other things too.

When we were admiring our hard work, our music teacher walked up to us and said “You have made a big mistake in one of your charts. Instead of writing about Purandara Dasa, you have written about someone else.” Oopsie.

We had to spend another awful night re-making the chart which increased not only our concentration but also our frustration.

Even though, the next day was Saturday, the exhibition was still going on but I had taken a day –off and passed the chart to my friend. The reason for the leave was because my sister (Kunji chechi) and I, Janu, Savithri and Shanku were going on an outing on a houseboat, along with our families.

We will write about our trip later.

This is Kunjunni and Janaki signing off.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Rainbows and elephants

As usual, whenever I come to India, I immediately notice the following changes every day;

-      From cereals and sandwiches to idli, dosa and appam
-      My waking-up-in-the-morning-timing from 8 in Riyadh to 9 in Cochin
-      My confusion with Malayalam words increases by 10 per cent

Also, the landscape affects me sometimes. I mean, when you look at Riyadh down from a plane, you see deserts and buildings with few trees and not a single river. But when I look at Kerala from a plane, all that I can see is green. Trees, bushes, herbs, shrubs, saplings and sometimes a snake-like river twisting itself and a spot on it indicating a bridge.

Why am I talking about the landscape so much? You may ask. That is because a week back I was able to see a beautiful rainbow from the terrace of our flat, which is the 9th floor. And even better, my cousins were there to see it with me.

I, Savithri, Shanku and Kunjunni were standing there with the breeze slapping our faces gently. We stared at the rainbow which looked so beautiful. And just behind it, another one could be faintly seen.

There was only one half of the rainbow and we started to wish there could be the other half too. And a few minutes later, the other half emerged from the other side of the cloud. It looked like the rainbow had impaled the cloud! We were so happy and joyful and all of us snapped some pictures.

For me, a rainbow had been something I had only heard of and seen in pictures. Seeing it right in front of me was totally new. I knew this was something I would never forget- my first rainbow. And even if I forget how it looked like, I can always still brag!

We can also hear the ringing of some bells gently in India if we are sitting around doing nothing or something. At first it sounds far-away and gentle. This it becomes closer and louder. That is always when we rush to the window in time to see an elephant, either on its way or back from the temple. Seeing an elephant in a temple is a common sight. Seeing it being bathed, fed and do its business is also a sight in the temple! Elephants are always present when there are festivals in the temple and such because the temples are big, spacious and open. There can be 10 elephants or sometimes even more. 

Monday, July 7, 2014

In the Land of Coconuts ...

It has been 2 weeks since I reached Kerala and we have had a family gathering, seen a movie and done some shopping.

Unfortunately for me, my cousins’ exams are going on but they managed to squeeze some time to have a lot of fun with us.

I, Kunjunni and Dad saw the movie “How To train Your Dragon 2” at PVR and we enjoyed it a lot. Well, at least I and Kunjunni enjoyed. Dad never saw the first part so I don’t think he understood a lot. But in any case, the movie received loud cheers and applause at the end.

Achamma (Dad’s mom) along with uncle Sujesh, reached Kerala from Bangalore the day after we reached India. So we had a family gathering with all our relatives, had a great time.

Kunji chechi’s Fa-1 exams finished 2 days back and now she is a free bird. But for poor Kunjunni, his exams are finishing only tomorrow.

His crafts teacher had told the class they needed to buy a pot and paint it. You get these materials in the store. So, the night before the Hindi exam, when I was at his home, he asked if I could help. We painted it with yellow in the middle and red on the sides.

For Earth-Care day at school, Kunjunni and his friend are to sing a song penned by their Physics teacher. The tune was given by Valyachan (Sreevalsan J Menon) and here is a sneak peek of the song.