I *heart* Bombay (and well..Boston)

I'm urban..in the way other people are mountain-people or tunafish junkies. I love city life...something about dreary concrete blocks and grumpy people totally gets my juices flowing. Ergo, this will be a blog about me, my two favourite cities (Bombay and Boston), my addiction to Vietnamese coffee and my views on Gregorian chant and it's efficacy in curing some types of tympannic membrane rupture. Enjoy!

Friday, October 28, 2005

Vacanza? Dove? Con chi?

I find myself on the eve of a Diwali vacation..3 whole days off! And if I can fineagle Eid into this equation, I get a whole week off! A whole week!! Or in my previous job in Ammrikka terms, 70% of my *yearly* vacation time. Add to that the measly 5 days or so Ammrikka allows for festival holidays and I was saving vacation time for 2-3 years to be able to make just one trip back to des (humming "Ghar aaja pardesi, tera des bulaye re" on the Lufthansa flight back). This time I find myself with the luxury of 3 days off for Diwali, 1 day off for Eid and then the weekend.

And I'm tormented. What do I do with this time off?

I tried calling up friends to find out if they wanted to go somewhere with me. Alas, I seem to have realized it's vacanza time too late. Everyone seems to have plans; ranging from time with family outta town to seminars in Delhi (blecch! You'd pick a boring seminar over me, Kate/Bob?). Prospective interests in the dating sphere begged off claiming work (!!) or the fact that they're already going somewhere with someone who was a little less chicken to ask them out. My parents don't wanna hang out with me either (my last resort? And that's gone too!). So I have a bunch of options I'm thinking. Blog readers may comment in the next 3 days and help me figure out what to do with my time.

1. Stick around in Bombay:
Pros? Don't have to bother with packing, travelling. Will be able to get table at Coffee Day at Carter's a little more easily. Can spend mucho dinero shopping on Diwali gifts for myself. Can go to Mohd. Ali Road for iftar and finally eat some haleem.
Cons? It's hot. Crackers with the noise and the smoke? Asthma central! And sans amis? Mais non!

2. Go to Ganpatipule:
Pros? Quiet, tranquil beach. Can catch up on my writing (I'd say reading, but I do too much of it already). Can relax and unwind. Lovely Ganpati temple there as well.
Cons? I'll be alone at one of the most romantic places in India. Sleeping alone in my nice AC MTDC room, wading through the surf without playfully ducking someone into the water. It's boring.

3. Go to Pune:
Pros? Big city fun at small town prices. Can catch up with the Pune guy who seemed interested in me the last time I went there. Can watch the cricket match there on the 3rd.
Cons? Pune? Come on! How is this even a vacation?

4. Go hiking in the Sahyadris:
Pros? Beautiful. The weather will be awesome as well. I love hiking and the mountains and I can get some very awesome photos this time.
Cons? Can't decide which peak to climb or which trek to do. Perhaps an Ashtavinayak? Trekking alone freaks me out ever since a couple of hikers had their throats slit about a week after I was hiking in the same area at Shenandoah in Virginia.

5. Go to Agra:
Pros? History! I'll be in seventh heaven comparing the architechtural styles of Shahjahan and Aurangzeb. The Taj!
Cons? The Taj! Will sit on the marble bench forlorn and missing M. Can't let that happen on a vacation!

6. Work:
Pros? Well, I *do* have a lot to do.
Cons? Well, I *do* have a lot to do.

Everyone got their Diwalii lights up yet? I'm putting up my *kandil* (Lantern) tonight and stringing out all the lights (which my mum calls Christmas lights...weird that this Hindu family only uses Christmas lights for Diwali). The kandil is this cloth thing (vagely Rajasthani looking ) that M. bought for me when we were holidaying in Goa. More memories..why won't they stop??

Current Music:
Rhiannon - Fleetwood Mac

Learning this song so I can sing it this Sunday night at Not Just Jazz at Karaoke night. I'll be the drunk guy also singing Abba's "Fernando" and Alannah Myles' "Black Velvet". With actions. Oh yes. Definitely with actions.


  • At 5:18 AM, Blogger kate said…

    Learning this song so I can sing it this Sunday night at Not Just Jazz at Karaoke night. I'll be the drunk guy also singing Abba's "Fernando" and Alannah Myles' "Black Velvet". With actions. Oh yes. Definitely with actions.

    This sunday night?I'll probably be at TIFR, so i'll drop in to watch..;)

    Also, don't crib about not knowing what to do on holidays.
    i didn't have dussehra off, and i don't have diwali/eid/that weekend off either.

    and as for picking the seminar over you, slight correction there. My boss picks the conference over you.Not me.Did you not hear me wailing on the phone last night?

  • At 5:19 AM, Blogger F-cubed said…

    fags and frogs k'roak! Thats a genetic given.

    Now if only I could get the guys at Gaybombay to accept that reality and organise a Karaoke competition would be great.

    Going Kroaking tonight or else would definitely have turned up to see you long you can hold the 'Black Velvet if you pleeeeeease' note.


  • At 5:22 AM, Blogger Vijayeta said…

    I'm working :( So, i think you should too!

  • At 5:48 AM, Blogger southpawpisces said…

    to add a pro to pune.. it's been averaging 13 degrees for the past week. go chill.

  • At 6:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I think you should work ... As for me i am gona get drunk/sleep around and try to forget you exist

    Yahooooo! boy enjoying Diwali right now

  • At 12:14 PM, Anonymous Balaji said…

    This Halloween weekend ! Maybe its time to get B'bay also hooked on it. Junta can dress up as Asuras and Devi's (sans the tiger, Lion etc).

    Am off to a party meself. The theme is - Insane Asylum. Am dressing up as Dr. Kill Joy - Blood stained doctor's coat, id card, and an axe :)

  • At 6:20 PM, Blogger Dumaketu said…

    gotcha feed the flies :) *wags forefinger* Looking forward to a lonely weekend with Blumenwaltz 'blaring' for a change with no one around in my lab...

  • At 12:48 AM, Blogger Parth Anand said…

    Stick around in Bombay...work..have fun...devour the festive delicacies..and who knows who you may run into...

  • At 4:33 AM, Anonymous kestrel said…

    ..when i was in bombay, i used to have the best screws during diwali time....the hostel used to be empty..the college used to be closed and wonderfully lovely men out on the streets in the mood to have fun......best of luck!!

  • At 4:41 AM, Blogger Vikster said…

    Kate: Drop by. I'm the guy singing Like a Virgin and Oops I did it again.

    FCubed: Oh trust me..Black Velvet was MADE for me to sing. I only wish Bombay was OK with me wearing my black velvet.

    Vij: I think I might join you at your work..

    Spaw: Oooh nice. Except I have no one to hug when it's that cold.

    Anony: Trying to forget me???? Is this M.?

    Bji: my last Halloween party, I was a Russian Mail (Male) Order Bride. And after a few vodka shots, I became Svetlana, the Russian whore.

    D'ketu: I kow what you mean. I'm bringing my Shostakovich and Vivaldi in to work these 3 days.

    Parth: You? Is this a backhanded way of saying you're around?

    Kestrel: If screwing was what I wanted, I could have it anytime..not just around Diwali. If one wants more, I guess one waits..years. Boohoo!

  • At 4:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Nope this is not M *still trying to forget u* i need another peg

  • At 5:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    sahyadri good idea and so is pune...
    or u could just go to funky munky a lil up the carter and get a tatto :P
    and guess what i went to mnhd ali road last week ... yummy affairs down there. and fukker u also a NTJBTB soul eh... i just loved the sunday night karaoke... now i gotta go there men...


  • At 8:14 AM, Blogger karuna said…

    Not just jazz is fun so stay... or go to pune...
    anyway im off to mohammed ali road now.. yummyyy

  • At 1:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Dear Vikster,

    I wish I could tell you how many laughs your blog has provided; it has provided me with much more, a laugh at my own expense, a cry at my loneliness, and sometimes a whimsical look at my own life. I am 28 and desparately lonely.

    Not much hope there anyway...Might have to make a second attempt at suicide.

    Anyway, 'Drama Queen' wishes u a happy diwali :-)!!!

    Take care and Thanks for all the fish!!!

  • At 6:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Try Pushkar, the Mela is on its way and Bharatpur will be FILLED with beautiful birds !!
    Have a wonderful Diwali ! :)

  • At 1:50 AM, Blogger Hiren said…

    Absolutely no mention of Lonavala! Very surprising. Thats the first things Bombaikars mention. Hope you have a nice time with whatever you opt. Our diwali in Delhi has been ruined by the bomb blasts.

  • At 5:18 AM, Blogger F-cubed said…

    Pushkar during the Mela is extremely overrated and overpriced! It's a far better option to go there at some other time (less crowds and way lower prices).

    Lonavla would be an absolute NO WAY - you may as well spend your vacations in Lohar Chawl given the kind of overcrowding you get out there over the holidays.

    All things considered Bombay (or a lonely trek out of the city) is probably the best option.


  • At 8:55 AM, Anonymous IGC said…

    LOL, is this the Bombay equivalent of American Idol, picking Vik's vacation destination?? I am sure it will be flooded with claims of vote-rigging and the like (oh, wait, that's the 2000 American election I am flashing back to.)

    As for the Karaoke, I would personally put in a vote for "The weiner takes it all." I tend to think a singer's oeuvre ought to come from experience...

  • At 10:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Pushkar is only a stop over. I'll still push for Bharatpur. Such a serene beauty! Add Ajmer to that and its a perfect get away!

  • At 3:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hmmm. I guess I'm a bit late. You must have already left to wherever it is that you decided to go. I could have suggested a couple of thousand places to confuse you more...

    Hope you enjoy the break.


    P.S. Somehow you being out on vacation during Diwali and ID does not make sense. I thought you are the kind of person who would enjoy the light and the general festive atmosphere around. No lighting up the Kandil and Diyas, or eating a ton of Karanjis for you?

  • At 6:58 AM, Anonymous closetalk said…



  • At 4:35 AM, Blogger Enemy of the Republic said…

    I say number 2. I have actually done that, but in Menorca. You may get lucky, and it won't be so boring.


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