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"To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect." - Oscar Wilde

Monday, 24 October 2016

#Blogbuddy - Bonds that Bind

Have you wondered what it would have been like if Harry Potter never had Hermione and Ron by his side to aid and abet, to save and rescue, to support and console all through his trying encounters? How would Percy Jackson have ever conquered the evil Kronos or battled the sea of monsters, the vile Medusa and so many more without Grover and Annabeth by his side? For that matter how would Thakur have gotten Gabbar Singh if not for Jai & Veeru? Yes, everybody needs partners in crime to catch the Golden Snitch, land the Golden Fleece or vanquish evil overlords!

Image source: zellox

Coming back to mundane, not so magical lives, 'Har ek friend zaroori hota he' says a popular jingle and I so agree with it! 
You need friends in every phase, every step of your life. Friends with whom you can yap, rave, weep, laugh, party and sometimes just share a quiet moment. As you go through different stages of life, the circle of friends is dynamic - either it is ever-expanding, at times switching/flitting or sometimes shrinking, depending on your emotional quotient and your priorities. But if studies of any kind are to be relied upon, the happiest people are those with friends, the number doesn't matter but the quality of friendship is what matters.

Like any field, blogging and writing is no exception in being extremely widespread and equally competitive. Writing is a lonely occupation, I have heard. But it does not need to be so. You don't need to be cooped up in a locked room and keep churning out blockbusters or be guilt ridden while tearing up drafts of your recent failures. 
Times have changed, you are not alone, all you need is to reach out through the seemingly deep waters you are submerged in and voila you are pulled on aboard a jolly vessel in the company of like-minded souls who will offer you all the help and assistance you seek in the blogging world or 'blogosphere'! Isn't that amazing? So this jolly vessel you're sailing in, is a community of bloggers and eventually you narrow down on a group of 'em who become your cronies or 'blogbuddies'! Having a community that shares your love for words and a goal to peak one's potential sure is motivating!

Yes, a blogbuddy or more blogbuddies are what a solitary blogger needs. Friends to bounce your thoughts, share your views, advise you, push, goad, encourage, motivate and shove you if need be to do your best. They are the go-to-guys for all minor to major blogging glitches, from what's the good word, grammar travails, punctuation nightmares, writers blocks, tech issues, SEO disasters, Alexa matters...trust me they have fixes for all your woes and sometimes if they don't - they'll help you find answers to all your niggles, how sweet is that?
Having experienced the benefits of having super-cool blogbuddies myself, I can truthfully vouch that they are just what you need if you have any plans of simply laying anchor or striking gold in blogosphere. A close circle of trust, some friendly banter, naughty reprisals, spicy gossip with a healthy dose of 'see yourself for what you are' are some of the associated perils of a blogbuddy relationship. They are the guys who'll spur you on to aim higher, to try something new and not shy away from calling your lousy post just that!
Honestly, I am quite addicted to them and so I strongly recommend every blogger to get him/herself one or more of these - BLOGBUDDY LOVE!!


I am a Blogbuddy with @Blogchatter

­­Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI

Love in Frames - Frame 5

Ansh was bored. Idly he bounced his big rubber ball and it took a surprise bounce that knocked a delicate photo-frame off the credenza. It fell with a crash and Vivek looked up with a start. It was THE FRAME, the one, Diya had picked after a lot of scouting around.
Delicate shells and mother of pearl entwined in white metal along with beads of shiny crystal that sparkled every time they caught the light. The shells and beads now rolled on the floor and the frame lay face down amidst scattered smithereens of the glass cover. Ansh seemed paralyzed with shock and looked at Vivek with dismay all over his tiny face.
“It’s okay buddy, be careful there’s sharp glass on the floor. Don’t worry I’ll fix it before mom gets home,” he assured the little boy. They all knew how much Diya adored her artifacts; she was paranoid and super-finicky when it came to them. She never let anyone touch THE FRAME or move it around; it was practically sacred to her. It had always held a place of undisturbed pride all these years in every house they had resided.

I could not believe I had been at the beat-down, ramshackle handicrafts exhibition for well over three hours and it didn’t look like you were going to give up anytime soon! What could be so fascinating that you couldn’t drag yourself away? I couldn’t figure that out, especially since you actually didn’t buy much! I patiently trudged along and watched you - looking entranced by the sight of all the wares and curios on display and gaily chatting with the artisans. Finally I thought you were done, but just as we were proceeding towards the exit, you gave a little shriek and hurried to some stall you had missed visiting.
I felt almost jealous when I observed that look of ‘love at first sight’ as you were gazing at the tiny frame. A jubilant look on your face declared: I got it! You didn’t even bother to haggle over its price….how some things have changed now!

Diya sipped her coffee, concentrating on the screen in front of her. In the adjoining cubicle Shayna and Aditi were giggling over their mobile screens. ‘Silly girls, when will they grow up!’ she wondered. She was used to seeing them go through constant cycles of ecstasy and depression revolving around their ephemeral boyfriends.
She glanced at her soft-board that was filled with memos, reminders…her eyes seeking out the cute family photo from their recent holiday.

The first time we went to a photo studio after our engagement, how the old photographer hassled us! Telling you to loosen up, place your arm around me, telling me to drop my big goofy smile and look a little coy.
Well, whatever he did, he managed to capture the perfect candid moment with both of us rapturously gazing at each other; while we thought he was preparing for the shoot. That was of course besides that dowdy-goody-good picture our families had demanded of us!

Vivek frantically racked his brains….where on earth could he find a frame so precious, one that was so dear to Diya! He spent half the day googling all the possible online shopping sites but came away with nothing. Little Ansh patiently sat through it all with his Dad and finally he said, “Let’s go to Mom’s favorite store and pick her a new one, even more beautiful?”
As the lift crawled up to their floor, Diya hoped her maid had prepared the dinner with less restraint on the salt and spice. She made a mental note to stock up on kitchen supplies soon. She entered the house and found the boys and Vivek waiting for her with a pretty bouquet and a beautifully wrapped gift. “Surprise!” they chorused.
“Hey…what’s this for? Tell me quick…Vivek, what happened? Taran, did Dad forget to pick you from school? Ansh sweetie, did you eat lunch?”
Guiltily, Ansh came forward with the gift, “Mom, I was playing with the ball and it knocked over THE FRAME! So we got you one….even prettier!”
Diya felt moved, “Aww…. that is so sweet! Come on guys, group hug time…I hope the new frame you picked is bigger so all four of us can fit into it!”
Vivek’s eyes met Diya’s. No words were needed.

Sweetheart, THE FRAME is nothing to me; it was the memory it held that made it so precious. It was the first picture we took together as a couple, the one the old photographer clicked….if it’s safe, that’s all that matters!
THE FRAME ensconced a beautiful memory of our gentle, tender first love and with time it has endured and grown so much more vast, rich and mellow!


FRAME1<<FRAME2<<FRAME3<<FRAME 4 <<  And their life continued with many more happy little frames!!

Image source: MarlboroughAntiques


Disclaimer: All the characters in the Love in Frames series are fictional, any resemblance to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental and unintentional.


Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI

Friday, 21 October 2016

Love in Frames - Frame 4

Vivek switched on his laptop. His desktop came alive with the changing screensaver, a beautiful image from their recent holiday. His mind wandered to their first holiday, so many moons ago.

You had packed so much into those two large suitcases; I wondered whether you had misinterpreted the honeymoon as a migration. You haven’t changed much, have you? Packing enough for every imaginable contingency! 
But of course, you forgot to pack your toothbrush into your bulky honeymoon packing! That however seemed so minuscule an oversight, considering I had forgotten to pack the one thing you constantly reminded me before the trip – the camera! How did we survive those days without the mobile-camera, I can’t imagine. I was in the throes of misery and self-loathing, agonizing over the missing camera. I had so wanted to capture your beautiful face and our new love on camera and now…now…all those dreams were shattered by my blunder! I was fretting about miserably while you calmly smiled and said, ‘Atleast, now I won’t have to wear good clothes and make-up all the time!’ I realized then that capturing those moments and framing them for life through my mind’s eye was way better than peering through the lens all the while, trying to correct an already perfect moment!

A bike with a tightly spooned couple on it, whizzed past the taxi. Diya idly wondered how they managed that stunt in the hot summers.

Were we ever that young? Yes, we were like them too, carefree and madly in love, on a bike breezing through the muddy roads in a pelting downpour….our rainy honeymoon! A washout it would have been if you had kept raving and moping on about the damned, forgotten camera. I was upset too, but I couldn’t bear to see you beat yourself up over your folly. I was glad I managed to cheer you up and we did manage to get a few goofy photos at that local dingy photo studio, sitting in a dummy car, in front of Shalimar gardens….priceless shots weren’t they!


Image source: Pixabay

Disclaimer: All the characters in the Love in Frames series are fictional, any resemblance to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental and unintentional.


Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

What's in a number?

What's in a number I say? Never a fan of numbers, I blank them out whenever possible. Well, out of sheer habit, I missed seeing that I had already posted my 100th post! 
But never to late to party is it? And anyway, like I was saying, what's the big deal about numbers or stats for that matter!

Image source: Pixabay

Hey and hello dear friends, go grab yourself a cupcake and settle down. And what are we partying about, you ask? 

Its to celebrate,
  My 101th post 
and also the
First Blog Anniversary 
of Relax-N-Rave!!

If some of you are wondering, 'Woah....just one year?', join me, for I feel I've been a part of Blogosphere forever!!
Not a blogger by making, this is something I kind of stumbled into when I was at loose ends with choices in my life.
My Blogger account was created in March'15 simply with the idea of some place online to copy-paste-share some rather lengthy WhatsApp messages that I had started passing around and hounding people to read.
Having spent my growing years reading fantastic books, writing is a dream come true;  giving wings to my imagination, writing my own stories, in my own little online space.
Then around this time last year (Oct'15), I published my first serious writing (well, actually a humour series) - Of Bais Gone by (A Saga).
As I shared these posts on my WA and FB groups, I was greatly encouraged by the responses.
It was like a man-eater getting the first taste of blood (sigh! Wish I'd come up with a better analogy), I wanted more; to reach out to a wider audience but with no idea how to go about it. I wondered where it was that all the action happened.
And as providence would have it, I bumped into twitter!! (Reactivated a dormant account to be more specific!) Twitter was where I found other bloggers and blogging communities and therein started my voyage of discovery! I was bewildered and awestruck by all the mind-blowing blogs and bloggers I came across!
Clumsy and tottering new steps found support from generous souls to whom I shall be eternally indebted. 
Friends I have made in the virtual world are now a part of my real world!

Friends who are established bloggers, encourage, push and prod me on to strive harder and despite my whimsical character, I am trying to do just that. Challenges and Community keep the writing mind sharp and personal engagements strong.

If you think a year into blogging is no big feat, I agree. It may well not be, for everyone else but for me, yes it is a big deal! I have finally started telling people that I am a blogger, an identity that took me some time to acknowledge
I've done posts in genres I was comfortable with or knowledgeable about while some posts were in genres that were discoveries for me too - where I wracked my brain or feverishly researched before posting them online.
I am still blown by some of the stupendous blogs I come across every single day, that's the beauty of the blogging world, new discoveries every day! 
And have I matured as a blogger?
Besides cutting short my over-long ramblings, I think I haven't changed much. Blogger etiquettesa hitherto alien concept, is something I am now familiar with!
I am not really bothered that I am still on a supposedly derelict and on the verge of extinction 'Blogger' platform. My goal is to write and of course preferably be read too; purpose served, me happy! Personally, I am pretty comfortable in my 'Blogger' home that's much like a pair of well-used shoes that you don't want to flip over for strappy stilettos that look great but are a big pain! (ughh! Even worse analogy - shoes = home, what's with me?)
I may not have much to brag about in terms of blogging-milestones, but believe me when I say, each post I deliver is a labour of love. So 100 deliveries in a year - I am doing good I say! Honestly, a year ago I would never imagined I'd be here!

My gratitude list would run into several posts and I am wary of missing out any names, so I'll just say,


My aim for Relax-N-Rave? It will always be a fun place, 

'A cool hangout to plunge into and chase away the blues.  
Just the place you need to unwind, relax and recharge.'

I hope to stand by these words and continue to relax and rave - yep, that's the best way to do it, isn't it?
Another thing I promise you is, in this blog-o-mine - You'll find something new and authentic every time you're here! You'll have stuff that's quirky, moody, funny, informative, entertaining......be prepared for surprises and always expect the unexpected here!  
A bit pompous, eh? Yeah, its my blog baby, I have exclusive bragging rights here ;)
Saving the best for the last, I could never have done any of my writing without my lovely family's support. Family that helped me with their loyal - 'YOU'RE THE BEST' attitude! Putting up with my countless requests to review and edit my rants, being told off for over-the-top write-ups or plagued to publish ones that they considered worthwhile!
So cheerio folks, keep reading , keep spreading the love around, its one thing that doesn't get exhausted, just keeps multiplying and comes back to you manifold!

Also adding this cliche line: Miles to go before I sleep :)

Hugs and Love,



­­Copyright © 2016 KALA RAVI