I’ll Be Ill

I am currently unwell. Friday night I had a bad cold which I managed to fight off till sleep time. I tried to relax during the weekend and even though I had the effects of a cold. I decided not to go out and just rest up. Unfortunately yesterday morning I woke up with a fever and body aches.

I took a sick leave yesterday and slept most of the afternoon. Evening I woke up by 5pm and got coffee and a snack and managed to sit up for 2 hours. I then had to lie down and watched a few episodes of BSG and Stargate SG-1 before I fell asleep. Today it seems that I had a bit of a stomach upset and tiredness and join aches. But the fever seems to have gone down.

I will need another leave today and rest as much as I can. Paracetamol seems to have worked for the most part but I do feel ill and tired. I am going back to bed and will rest for a while.

Get To Know Me – 15 More Qs

18. Do you speak any languages and how well?

A. English, Hindi, Malayalam – Hindi is conversational and not very fluent, Malayalam is fluent but can’t write/read

19. Are you single or taken?

A. Very much single.

20. How long was your longest relationship?

A. 5 years and a few months. That was ages ago.

21. How many siblings do you have?

A. 1 older sister

22. What is your go-to fast food order?

A. Nothing like that. Pepperoni pizza might be my fav though.

23. Do you use a PC or a Mac?

A. PC desktop for work, pc laptop for personal.

24. What is your favorite Netflix show?

A. Too many to mention.

25. Show us your songs tab on Spotify

A. I don’t have a Spotify account

26. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

A. Oooh. Anything chocolate with some nuts in it.

27. Which is your favorite sports team?

A. Arsenal FC – and in a bit of a crisis at this moment

28. How many countries have you traveled to?

A. 2 – Kuwait & England

29. Have you been to any concerts or Festivals? Which were the most memorable?

A. I’ve been to a few concerts in India. No international artists yet – fav one is Millennium supporting Indus Creed

30. What social media are you addicted to?

A. I seem to prefer Facebook and I am on it a lot. Instagram is a second.

Cold Day Itinerary

What is your favorite thing to do on a cold day?

Well I don’t know about you guy but it doesn’t really get so cold over here. It is a tropical state after all. However on days that it rains very heavily and there is a strong wind, it can get a little bit cold. Nothing that people who have proper winters face but still cold for us. This past monsoon season was kinda really cold and it was nice.

On such days I will drink a lot of hot coffee. That is a given. Sometimes I will also order coffee from a nice cafe like Cafe Coffee Day or now since the end of October, Starbucks. Some other cafes also have good coffee and I can order them via Swiggy or Zomato and get the coffee delivered to me. Like regular coffee is fine but at times I crave a nice cappuccino or mocaccino. On warmer days it’s a frappuccino.

I will lie in bed and snuggle between the sheets and watch a couple of movies. It’s not worth it to get up unless its for food or more coffee.

Prompt from 31 Days Of Writing Prompts For December at The SitsGirls

Secret Wish

Tell us about something you secretly want to do, but have never tried.

So let me tell you two of them. I will tell you the first one now. It’s a secret that I think shouldn’t be much of a secret.

The first one is that I wish I could move out and live on my own. Let me explain. I live in a smallish 3 bedroom apartment which my parents and I moved into back in 2006. At first we shared the expenses but as my dad retired a couple of years ago, I pay all the bills. Even before I knew that I couldn’t move out and still contribute the way I can. My sister also contributes a lot, takes my parents out for hospital runs and the odd shopping.

See my quandary? I would love to have my own privacy and space. I want things to be done my way yet I can’t afford to move out and pay rent for my new place, spend money to get things that I would need for there (fridge, washing machine, cooking stuff etc etc) and my monthly expenses and also give money for monthly expenses at home. And don’t get me wrong; I love my parents (when they don’t get on my nerves, especially my mom) and want them to be comfortable and happy, but I have my own needs and it’s getting difficult to not have my own place.

I want a nice 3 bedroom apartment or a house. 2 bedroom and a den. I want to decorate it my way and with things that I like. And I want to keep a dog. Not that my folks won’t have a problem with a dog but 3 people and 1 dog in a small apartment would be a bit congested. I don’t have the luxury of having my own place. Yet I have to pay for everything.

Prompt from 31 Days Of Writing Prompts For December at The SitsGirls

8 Months Of W@H Over

The new normal. When people started using this term, I think it was April that I had noticed it, I was all “pish tosh”! “Are you jumping the gun? I mean it’s only been a couple of weeks and already you have started creating this term. Things will go back to normal in a couple of months!” How naive was I!

It’s because I had never experienced anything like this and neither had you to be honest. We haven’t had such a pandemic affect human lives in over 10 years. And now I don’t know when things will change. People are talking about a possible anti-virus drug or two in the works but that is gonna take a long time to have everyone covered. This is the new norm till that happens. I do not see us going to normal until possible 2023! At best and I think that is being very, very positive.

Meanwhile, life is spent mostly indoors unless it is necessary to go out. Groceries are mostly delivered to us, medicine is delivered to us. A couple of times a month I go out mainly just so I can go out and not go crazy. I also use these opportunities to go and buy beer and maybe some vodka or something. To dull the boredom. I don’t mind the working from home – as long as I am not bothered during the rest of the hours – and I would like to continue working from home for the rest of my career.

Family 5 : Movies

What are your five favorite movies for a family movie night?

I don’t have a wife or kid/kids. I wish I found the love of my life and were married. And though I haven’t wanted to have kids for the longest time, at times I also find myself wishing that I had a wife and a child. A daughter. Call me crazy.

Anyways, if I did have my own family I would have family movie nights with them? And if I had to pick a few movies for that, depending on the age of my kid, I would probably pick:

  • Gremlins
  • ET
  • My Cousin Vinny
  • School Of Rock
  • Mrs. Doubtfire

So I purposefully skipped a lot of movies that I could easily add here for several reasons – I avoided mostly sequels, action oriented and major science fiction movies and movies that had more dark subjects. Because there is a kid involved. LOL, no kid but yeah!

Prompt from 31 Days Of Writing Prompts For December at The SitsGirls

Are You A Hoarder Or A Minimalist?

I think I am somewhat of an inbetween-er. I love collecting stuff. When I was younger it was comic books and sports magazines. And later on as I entered my teens it was music, mainly rock magazines, that I collected. I got rid of all of them by the time I was 30.

But my main collection was music cassettes and later cds. I had one of the largest collections of rock and metal music albums in Kerala and perhaps even in India. Well….yeah I probably did. I never did take a full count so I don’t have exact numbers but yes it was a source of pride for me. However as we were moving from a nice big house to this small apartment I knew I had to save on space. By then I had most of my albums on cassettes on cds as well so it was an easy decision.

After I got all my stuff into this room, stacked them in a built-in cupboard and a steel one, I then looked around for getting a pc. This was 2006 September, so I wasn’t really thinking of getting a laptop. I got one assembled by the tech team connected to my then employers and then began ripping my cds into mp3s formats and saving them on the hard drive. Later, as my collection grew, I got an external hard drive (now changed to a new one) just for saving the mp3s.

In 2015 I started collecting Star Trek starships, which I have now stopped since they break easily and it is hard to clean if you display them without the boxes. Which is crazy. So I stopped at 45 but I do love them. DVDs are my thing now. I like to collect them as much as I can and have a nice collection to show off.

Prompt from The Learning Network At The New York Times

Nov 26: On This Day…

On this day, Nov 26:

My Afternoon Routine

What is your morning routine?

So I am gonna change it to my afternoon routine since my regular work shift is 6:30 pm to 3:30 am.

I usually end up waking anywhere between 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm depending on what time I fall asleep. I then proceed to lie in bed for a while, check my phone and see if I have any missed calls or messages and check Facebook. Then I check Instagram and Gmail to see if there is anything interesting. Then I get up and drag my carcass to the bathroom and wash my face and brush my teeth.

I then switch on my laptop and router and while it boots up, I go to the kitchen and get what will be the first of 3 or more coffees. I bring it back to my room and drink it slowly while I go to Youtube and check out the channels that I follow. By 2pm I start to get hungry so I look out for the first meal of the day, which will be lunch. Rice, curry and maybe fish. Once that is done, I check to see if there is any fruit and eat that.

I come back to the bedroom and by 2:30 pm or 3 pm I move the laptop aside and lie in bed and watch tv shows or sometimes even a movie if I am in the mood. By 5 pm I will be freshed and get more coffee and it’s back to more browsing on the laptop (Facebook, Youtube, Blog etc etc) and then by 6pm I start to get ready and take a shower as by 6:30 pm I login for work.

Prompt from 103 Blog Post Ideas That Your Readers Will LOVE

How Do You Deal With Anger?

Sometimes I need to vent. Sometimes I need to shout it off and vent and walk (or stomp) around and let the pressure out of my system. And that’s because if I do not do that, I will bottle it up and it will burst at an awkward moment and that would not be a pretty sight.

Another way is to shut myself away from others. And just be quiet. Look at stuff, get some fresh air and not talk to anyone. Play some music and just let it play in the background and try not to think about anything else but let the lyrics and the music wash over me and concentrate just on that.

Watching a favourite movie or tv show helps. Again, the familiarity of the show/movie is really important. I may not even be concentrating on the movie that much but it helps to have it on and that I can see & hear it if I need to.

Prompt from 119 Journal Prompts for Your Journal Jar

Get To Know Me – 15 Qs

1. Where did you grow up?

A. Kuwait City, Kuwait till the age of 11 and then Cochin, Kerala.

2. Where do you currently live?

A. Cochin, Kerala India

3. Who is your first best friend?

A. I have 3 best friends – Anil, Madhu & Namratha

4. How tall are you?

A. 164 inches

5. Dogs or Cats?

A. Both but if I had to pick only one, dogs

6. Funniest moment throughout high school?

A. Too many to mention here.

7. What year were you born?

A. 1976

8. Are you in/have you gone to college?

A. Went

9. What is your favorite drink?

A. Vodka & Sprite, Espresso vodka & Coke/Pepsi. Otherwise just Sprite.

10. What is your spirit animal and why?

A. Golden Retriever dogs. Because I love their loyal, tail wagging selves.

11. You’re wearing perfume, what scent is it?

A. Deodorant and it’s Axe Gold

12. Tea or Coffee?

A. Coffee cold or hot and also Ice Tea in a peach flavour

13. What sports do you play or have you played?

A. Used to play football, cricket, badminton as a kid

14. What is your favorite movie?

A. Too many but let’s go with Star Trek II Wrath Of Khan & Star Trek Nemesis.

15. Who are your favorite YouTubers?

A. Ken Domik, Matthew Santoro

Another Rare Day Out

After almost 3 weeks I finally went out. Since I get most of my groceries and other stuff delivered to my apartment building, I rarely do need to go out. But yeah twice a month I do try to go out, get some money out of an ATM, do some other errands if needed, buy some beer and other liquor, check if there any parcels waiting for me at the post office, maybe get some lunch outside and anything else I need to do.

I have a cab driver, who uses Ola & Uber but since he is a nice older guy I call him up and ask him if he can come for my errands twice a month. I enjoy his company and he waits and is fair when he charges me; even giving back some money that I wanted to give him extra because he felt that the total ride wasn’t that long. So I call him up the previous night and then arrange for him to meet me the next afternoon at around 12 or so. Yesterday it was at 1:15pm since I woke up so late.

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At 11:40 pm I had a mayo sandwich for breakfast with coffee and then shaved and had a shower. By 12:45 I was ready to get dressed and iron my shirt. By 1:15 pm I got into the cab and before I went out to Palarivattom I needed to check something. An Amazon order from Amazon.com was left along with my packages last Wednesday and it turns out it was for an A Gopalakrishnan in an office nearby. However try as I might I couldn’t find the office and decided to let the post office know. I then went to Palarivattom to drop off some documents.

Then I went to buy some beer and unfortunately Couchyn/Grand Hotel had run out of beer. You see you can buy beer and liquour from bars at the regular price but they had run out. So I bought a bottle of Ceasar brandy for my dad and then went to Lotus Club so I could buy some beer. I bought 3 Beck’s Ice and 4 Budweiser Magnum. Then I went to buy some groceries, get some money outta an ATM and then took a quick lunch of a beef mince burrito at Cafe 17 with a Peace Ice Team and then headed home.

Emergency ‘Go-Bag’

What Would You Put in Your Emergency ‘Go-Bag’?

Some cash. You always need physical cash in an emergency even as online wallets and phone apps keep multiplying and usage of them expands. In certain conditions cash is the only way to go and sometimes that’s all that works. So yes I would keep some emergency cash with me. Not too much but enough for getting me from a place to home.

My asthma inhaler. A new one. I suffer from bronchitic asthma and I need my inhaler near me in case I suffer from a shortness of breath. There are a lot of things in the air that can trigger my asthma and it is always important for me to know that I can rely on something to clear up my trouble.

Change of clothes. A spare set of glasses. Identification papers. Keys. And yes my phone and charger will be in there as well.

Prompt from 50 Creative Writing Prompts for Student Blogging

Perfect Companion

 If you could have any pet, what kind of animal would it be? Why?

I think this should be a given by now and one of the least secretive things about me but I love dogs. As much as I love cats and would love to have a couple in my family, I prefer dogs. I have had 2 cats as pets and at one point my sister and I took care of 4 strays who’s mother birthed them inside out storage room for a few days. But I have had a dog for 11 years and take care of another dog for 1 year and I miss having dogs.

So if I could have any pet I would get a dog and I would want a Golden Retriever. They are the best. Second would be a Labrador retriever as they are very alike. Ah, to have the love of a dog with you. You know what, since we are making wishes, I just want my Shawny back. I wish I could get her back once again as a puppy and we can spend all her life making sure she is loved and pampered. She really was the best.

When I see pics or videos of dogs and the relationship they have with their humans, I get a twinge in my heart. It’s a combination of envy and jealousy with a big dash of missing what I used to have. Someday I guess I will have another dog in my life. And I want it to be a female dog, because the two dogs that I have taken care of were both female and I guess I associate that companionship, loyalty & love to the female of the dog species.

Prompt from 50 Creative Writing Prompts for Student Blogging

A New Frontier

I often dream science fiction situations. I am crazy like that and I love it. At times, just when I am about to go to sleep, I can almost feel myself in that situation, in that futuristic world and I can see myself commanding a starship. But this time, a few nights ago I had a different dream around the theme of space and spaceships and traveling to distant planets.

I dreamed that we had visits from a horde of large spaceships and the world panicked. Can 2020 get any worse; we are getting an alien invasion now? Turns out it isn’t an alien invasion. A few of the spaceships hail us and land in major cities. They are humans in these ships. And they are from the future, take a large undertaking of coming up with creating a way to travel back in time to 2020 from way out in the future. Like well over a couple of thousand years from now.

The reason they have come is that the feel that humans from this era can be saved from the pandemic. The pandemic becomes worse in 2021 and kills off huge chunks of our population. It takes decades for us to recover and this brings our scientific advancements down for the next hundred years. However our descendants eventually thrive and achieve the ability to easily travel the stars and leave the planet behind to settle elsewhere. Now they have developed easier methods to travel in space and then discovered the option to travel back in time. They meet with the governments of the world and say that they will take back as many people as they can and it will have to be in several trips.

They bring smaller ships that can connect to one another and can have a small number of people, each from a family, in it and they have to be secluded due to the pandemic. Once we reach the star system that they are in they will help us to settle in comfortable homes that they have setup for us on a couple of earth like planets.. And during the trip we will also see a slowing down of our aging to the point that even after several months in space and then years on the new planets, we would age only by a few weeks.

The future humans pick individuals who can represent a large group of related humans and one of them is me. After I get lessons on flying the spaceship and the controls for the working of the ship (food & drink dispensers, coolness and heat, air & water generators, it’s time to inform my family members including parents, uncles, aunts, cousins and their spouses. However some spouses relatives will be traveling in other units. The first unit handed to me consists of a couple of living quarters, hall, bridge and dining area. The remaining units will have the same minus the bridge as their units will all connect to mine. Dad, mom & surprisingly Shawny, who is alive in this dream, are with me.

In the next unit will be my sister and her husband and their 3 kids plus their dog. Another uncle and aunt and their children, my cousins with their spouses and kids respectively in another unit and so on & so forth. Since I am the representative, I will pilot all of them to the star system we are supposed to go to, just by following the future humans vessels. It is an exciting and scary time but we have to do it. As night falls, all the units are getting connected to my main unit one by one and off we head out into space.

The Weekend’s Gone In A Flash

Why the bloody hell do these 3 day weekends always seem to rush by? They have even started to feel shorter than a regular 2 day weekend! Of all the nerve.

In the blink of an eye, faster than a hurricane in the eye of a storm, 3 days go by faster than a day of the work week. Time flies by when you are having fun or doing nothing. This morning I woke up at 9 am but since I am working a 6:30 pm to 3:30 am shift I felt that it would be good to get some more sleep so I laid back in bed and snoozed for another 2.5 hours.

Morning sleep, when it isn’t noisy or too sunny is a beautiful thing. So I had a smile on my face as I napped till 11:30 when I just had to wake up. Couple of coffees later I am good to go. But I will lie back and watch a movie in the afternoon before 5pm when I go and get a shower and get ready for the work.

3 Day Relaxation

It’s a 3 day weekend once again. Woo-hoo! So happy that it has come at such a deserving time when my department has had such a busy 3.5 months with so many new people joining and we have to conduct their training and also sort out so much other stuff for them. Plus there are the reports and all such nonsense that goes hand in hand with working for a MNC in India and calls and meetings and such.

So it’s a perfect time to chill and relax and sit back. Drink a beer or 5. Actually tonight I’m just having a Pepsi and maybe on Sunday I might have some rum & coke or a beer. I am ordering in some southern style fried chicken from a new joint that has opened up nearby, a combo bucket with 9 piece chicken, some buns, fries and garlic sauce. I’m watching a bunch of Youtube videos at the same time. Once dinner is done, I will settle back and watch a movie (haven’t picked one out yet but I have quite a few that I can choose from and wanna watch this weekend). No football today as Arsenal is playing tomorrow night.

Sunday & Monday is open for me, only things sure is that I will watch a few movies and also a lot of Youtube and music.

Plum Liking It

A fruit which I rarely used to get is the plum. I dunno why but we as a family rarely ever get plums. My family usually likes to eat some sort of fruit after lunch or dinner. Living in Kerala, bananas are very common and eat at all times of the day but apples, grapes, oranges, mangoes and a few others are also big choices. But not so much the plum.

A few days ago I bought a huge set of plums. 2 kgs I think from one of the chain stores of fresh fruits & veggies. I found out that I like plums a lot. I like to keep them in the fridge and have one after lunch and one after dinner. They are not too sweet, a tad bit too juicy but I find them refreshing and tasty.

Plums may have been one of the first fruits domesticated by humans. I think the ones I bought are called the Damsum variation of the plum with purple skin. I find the shape of the plum very provocative to say the least but it’s fun to eat.