Showing posts from 2013

IKEA Breakfast

There was deep rumbling from somewhere. Unfortunately that was not thunder, but my stomach growling. We were on our way from the badminton class. I was getting hungrier by the minute. I was given 2 options - Asraya Turkish restaurant or some other Arabic place. I did not have any interest in either of them but I saved when Dad pointed at DQ Grill & Chill , which we hadn’t tried till now, we could have our food from there. We loved trying out new restaurants. This place was called Dairy Queen (DQ) though I had no idea why it was called that. As long as I was concerned, it seemed to have burgers and the usual stuff and I didn’t think it to have any dairy items. We ordered onion rings, quesadillas, 2 grilled chicken burgers, large grilled chicken salad for my Dad and 2 sandwiches.  The place was a bit crowded, but still there was not much noise and we found a table. The onion rings were delicious and the quesadillas were to die for. Everything was yummy and the growli

OK Google!

This week was very busy. I bought 3 books from Jarir bookstore- “Diary of a Wimpy Kid- Hard Luck” by Jeff Kinney, “Dork Diaries- Tales from a Not-So-Happy heart breaker.’’ by Rachel Renee Russell, and “Gangsta Granny” by David Walliams. We  weren't  actually planning to go to Jarir bookstore. We just decided to go somewhere since we were bored and we thought of it. I jumped on the books the minute I saw them and Dad regretted of even thinking of going to the bookstore. He was also surprised when I finished all 3 books in one day. Go figure. A Nexus 5 Kit Kat is on its way from America and its destination will be the waiting hands of my father, or, more truthfully, my hands. It is a new version and not yet available in Saudi Arabia.  I said I could always help get rid of his old phone by accepting it as a hand-me-down.     If you come to my home, don’t be surprised if you hear someone always shouting “ Ok Google !” in front of the computer. This is because now there

Chennai Express

“Don’t underestimate the power of a common man” was a quote said by Shah Rukh Khan at least 5 times in the movie ‘ Chennai Express ’, a comedy movie. Three-fourth of the girls in my class watched that movie, and everyone liked it. Now at school we all imitate him and say “Don’t underestimate the power of a common girl” all the time. I really loved it too. It was really funny.  But Mom did not feel about it the same way I did, because she had seen many movies before similar to this. Also, when the fight between Tangabali and Rahul started, she had got up and walked around the house for some time since she did not like fight scenes. And I got that very gift too. So I was mostly looking down at my feet and admiring my toes during the fight. But I watched the rest of the movie with Dad and Mom. The three of us were sitting on two comfy huge armchairs. For some time I sat next to Dad on his armchair but his tummy got in the way so I sat next to Mom in hers. Both of us fit per

Oh Zeus!

When I got out of the car, the wind had become stronger. It tugged at my shawl, but I held on to it. Now we can say winter has officially started, for the temperature has dropped. After reading Percy Jackson books (again), I was ready to blame the Greek god Zeus , lord of the skies. We did not have to wear our uniform tomorrow, instead, we could wear color dress, and the teachers said we did not have to bring any books. It would be really fun. But the sky is now all moody and grumpy and it is making me all grumpy too. There is lightning, thunder and rain. Mom says that maybe I may not be able to go to school tomorrow. Great. Just great. There are only a few days when we look forward on going to school and tomorrow is going to be one of those days. And then BOOM! Now we can’t. I wonder how many classmates of mine are coming to school tomorrow.   Have mercy on us, Zeus. 

Bahrain Diary (Part 2) - Tree of Life

A group of women wearing short dresses got out of their car. The car’s tire had sunk in the sand, and refused to move.  Some men surrounded them, giving them smiles and offering their help to the girls. Their own car had got sunk in the sand, but they hardly paid any attention to it or the “ Tree of Life ”, now that they had something else better to look at …… . I gazed at the tree from a distance. This ancient tree was called the “ Tree of life ” as it had survived in the desert for 400 years without any known water source. When we were just about to reach, I had seen a tree next to the roadside but it was only my size and I had felt disgusted, since I thought that was the great ‘Tree of life’. But when the real tree appeared in sight, bigger than its imposter, my disgust turned into wonder and amazement. Many people, the newborn, the middle-aged and the old, were sitting on the tree happily and trying to climb it. Some branches of the tree touched the ground while the ot

l'OLIMPO - The Italian dinner

I picked up a slice of yummy pepperoni pizza, cheese trailing after it. It looked and smelled delicious. In less than 4 seconds my slice was gone. Dad was looking at me, astonished. “Nobody is going to steal your slice.” I gave him a suspicious look. If Dad requested for a small bite of anything I was having, from guavas to ice creams, pretty much half of it would be gone. Go figure. We were at l’OLIMPO , an Italian restaurant. For me, dessert is more important when we go to restaurants like these, and I would always go to dessert section first, whether we bought any or not. For Mom, the place looked like a ‘wonderland’, for me it looked a little like ‘ Steak House ’, only little more stylish. I like Steak House, but now whenever I think of it I always remember the ‘great zucchini’ incident . We had chicken Caesar salad first. Dad love salad a lot, which is why I called him a ‘herbivore’. I poked my fork and attacked the lettuce since I found it difficult to stab it.

Bahrain Diary - 1

I groaned while I lay on the back seat, feeling bored and tired. The traffic crawled, moving 3 inches in every 10 minutes. My Mom had adjusted her seat so that it leaned back. Her eyes were closed and had her hands folded on her lap. My Dad rested his hands on the steering wheel. We were on our way to Bahrain. We had started out early in the morning and had been going for 4 hours. We left Khobar and reached the middle island though King Fahd causeway. Finally, when we got past all the traffic and visa checks after 2 hours and reached Bahrain, I became more relieved. We reached Hotel Ramada . It was a really grand hotel, with a swimming pool and breakfast every day. We would stay there for 4 days. Mom was tired and asked me and Dad to have lunch and get a take-out for her. But that was where the trouble started. I and Dad went out, ready to go to ‘ Saravana Bhavan ’. Ajay Valyachan lives in Bahrain, so he had told us about this restaurant. He gave us directions. We

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed and Dubai 1

After watching fairy tales, we always expect Kings and Queens, Princesses and Princes to have long gowns that sweep the ground, glittering tiaras, crowns studded with jewels, and excessive amount of jewelry. Right? It may seem like I am lying, but believe me, I am telling the truth. I ACTUALLY HAD A CHANCE TO SEE THE KING OF DUBAI, HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKTOUM !!!!! A King or Queen is a normal person like us, except they are born famous; they rule a country and everyone knows them. They wear normal clothes just like us, according to their traditions. My parents, Kunjunni (also known as Rockstar Nara , Detective Nara etc..) Kunji chechi, and Valyamma were also there when we saw him. We were at Dubai Mall. Dad and Mom were sipping a cappuccino at the coffee shop while the rest of us went at the top of Burj Khalifa . The view was spectacular. We were “Aaah”ing and “Ooh”ing the whole time -while we waited in our group, in the fastest elev

A tasty class project

Terrin was flapping her hands like annoying birds were flying around her head.  “What’s wrong?” I asked. A lunch box was open. It was Nada’s lunchbox. Nadha was standing nearby, looking amused. Terrin finished eating and exhaled. Her breath smelled like uniyappam. “Gross!” I said, wrinkling my nose. “Is it just me or is your breath so strong I can smell uniyappams even while standing 5 feet away?” “So good! But I ate only one.” Terrin said. “Can’t you wait until it’s time for the party?” “It’s hard to resist” came the reply. Terrin, me, Anne and Chandana are best friends. We could hardly wait for the party which was during the 4 th period and recess. There were many sweets, veg and non-veg food. When it was the 4 th period, we all immediately started arranging the tables and chairs. We had planned to make it like a buffet, and girls would stand behind the tables serving the food. I and Anne waited at the door to greet the teachers. We all had divi

Trip to Star City

“Behave like humans” was the first instruction given to us by Sandhya ma’am as she laid out the rules before we went to Star City, an amusement park, next day. Sandhya ma’am gave us a small glare and continued. “You have to wear your uniform ...” Sandhya ma’am went on. After she explained the instructions she said ‘’Don’t go anywhere alone, always be with your partner. The shops in Star City will be open for you.” My partner was Chandana, and Anne’s partner was Terrin. We had decided to try and stay together, but in either case that was tough. Everyone was so excited today when we were going to Star City. I, Terrin and Anne sang the song we had made in class yesterday, with the lyrics as the blood circulation. It started like this- (Sung to the tune of the hit Malayalam song ‘Appangal Embaddam’) “Pulmonary vein Left auricle, left ventricle Aorta, arteries All the body parts except luuungs..” Everyone laughed. We looked out of the window as we reached

Riyadh Aviation Museum

School is  reopening  after 2 days! Aaarghh! We bought a new bag, a new water bottle and a new lunch box. Sadly, the lunch box has a Disney princess on it and it is very, very pink in colour. But I anyway figured it couldn’t go worse than that and (besides, most of the lunch boxes either had a Mickey or Minnie mouse on it) therefore I decided to live with it. I have successfully completed my holiday homework and almost misplaced them in my happiness. Anyway, teachers won’t fall for the old trick, the my-dog-ate-my-homework one. Not that I have ever tried it. Now, I can look forward to projects, homework, table tennis classes, and Math’s tuition when school reopens. We went to the Royal Saudi Air Force Museum yesterday, and I have to admit, it was super. Old-fashioned planes of all shapes and sizes were there. There were fighter planes, planes for transporting cars and stuff, unmanned aircrafts, jets, bombs, missiles etc.

Alappuzha Trip

“Mew!” A kitten mewed when I stroked it. The other one brushed against my legs as it walked past. Their mother sat on the ground lazily, and watched the kittens lie, lick and run.  I started to stroke the other kitten and it ran between my legs. We laughed. The mother cat was named Mickey as Savithri and her family thought Mickey was a male cat and Savithri and her younger brother Shanku, ended up naming it Mickey. It was only after she gave birth to 2 kittens that they realized they Mickey wasn’t a ‘he’, but a ‘she’. Sadly, one of the kittens (Chakki) died later.   And when I visited them a second time, I saw a crow lying on one of the electric post. It had got electrocuted.  A murdered crow was surrounded by a ‘ murder of crows ’ ! Even though, that would be sad news for the crow, I was so excited. I had never seen a dead crow. Especially not one that had been electrocuted.      Two people from Mathrubumi came to interview Savithri’s Achachan (Grandfather).  

The mystery of the missing bicycle

Rockstar Nara’s career changed into Detective Nara. He solved “The mystery of the missing bicycle”.  These were the clues: ·         There were no clues These were the notes: ·         A bicycle was missing ·         Its owner was Detective Nara’s best friend, Abhijit ·         The lock of the cycle had got broken before, making it easy for the culprit to get cycle and make a clean getaway. The funny thing is, Detective Nara solved the mystery before he knew what had happened. Curious? Astonished? Impressed? I sure was. Actually, what happened was that Nara was riding at the back of Grandpa’s scooter when he noticed a bicycle near an old house, hidden between bushes.  He tried to remember where he had seen it before, but he was not able to remember. At school, Abhijit told him what had happened. Then Nara quickly remembered about the cycle he had seen and described it to Abhijit. He got an excited ‘’ Yes, that must be mine! How did you find it! W

Back from India...

Hey everybody! It’s me, Janaki. Whoops!  I am starting to sound like Mickey Mouse. You know, like how he says, “Hey everybody! It’s me, Mickey Mouse. Say, ya wanna see my club house?” And no matter how hard you scream “No!” he says, “Then let’s go to the club house. Oh, I forgot that we have to say the magic word. Misca Moosca Mouse ca doodles! Come on, say it with me” It’s pretty weird stuff, considering the fact that we have to say the words that make absolutely NO sense at all. I came back from India on the 11 th of August, with sadness and sleepiness, because we left home at 11 at night, so I had a quick nap in the car while going to the airport. So, I was pretty grumpy and sleepy when we reached the airport, for I had been having such a good dream. For a sec, I did not even care leaving India, which might have been a good thing because otherwise I would probably run screaming “I don’t want to go back!” to the car. But then, I remembered the fun I had all th

Vacation begins..

A lot of things have happened (and are going to happen) during all this time, so I shall quickly go over them in points- My exams finished 2 days ago Summer vacation has begun I am going to India tomorrow. I shall come back on August 11 th It is very rainy in India now 2 weeks ago I held my birthday party. Chandana and Anne came, we had a lot of fun and I got few gifts. J !!!!!! I am so happy that I am going to India tomorrow! I am going to have so much fun! The only problem is that, it is really pouring rain in India. Many streets were full of water and some were flooded. My cousins got a lot of holidays from school because of this dreary rain. So, it will be difficult to go out unless we want to be drenched in the rain. But since their home is just across the street, we can always play an indoor game. My 3 rd blog anniversary was on 26 th of June, the day when I published my first post.  Yaayyy! My exams were over on Wednesday. The last exam we

Chandana's party

Last  Friday, Chandana, my best friend threw a party. I, Anne, Daniya and Alaina (she is one of our classmates) were invited. Daniya is leaving Riyadh and going to India on May 9 th . We were all glad to hear she would be coming because Daniya was one of our best friends and we all loved her a lot. She was really sweet and kind. We would miss her. Anne was not able to come because she had to go somewhere, but all others came. When I arrived, Dania was already there and she was outside with Chandana and her father, waiting for me. We all began to chat excitedly. Chandana lived in an STC compound and there is only one word to describe it. It was HUMONGOUS!! It was a pretty neat compound, with a clubhouse, swimming pool and 4 parks. There were many villas. Alaina arrived half- an- hour late. When she came, Dania whipped out her camera and told us to stand together so that she could take a photo. We made funny faces in front of the camera and Dania was laughing so

Koshari Express

Last night, for dinner, we had an Egyptian dish. Can you guess which?  (Hint- It starts with “Ko” and ends with “shari” ) Of course! It was koshari ! It consisted of rice, macaroni, noodles, chick peas and lentils topped with small chicken pieces. The noodles were cut into pieces (some people might think this is a weird combination but it is not. ) It was delicious but kind of heavy and was a beautiful combination with a sauce like salsa. Some of Dad’s colleagues are Egyptians and sometimes they buy koshari , that is how we came to know about it. We had it from a restaurant called “ Koshari Express ”. We gobbled all of it up and washed it down with a bottle of ‘Mirinda’. I remember that 2 years back in 5 th grade, one of our teacher’s told us that Pepsi and other fizzy drinks were very harmful for us and they could cut our intestine. Well, that did the trick. Whenever we had Pepsi, I always gave it the evil eye and refused to drink it. My parents assure

Detective Nair

They say that time flies quickly, and I now reluctantly agree with them. I cannot believe that 2 weeks sped by so quickly! It seems like just yesterday I had finished my exams. Now there are only 4 more days as holidays, school is reopening on  Monday and is the beginning of 7 th grade too. My cousins are soooo lucky, they now have summer vacation for 2 months. Every morning Dad drops me at school and afternoon I come back by school van. Malaika, Marilyn, Faiz, Ravika, Abdul Aziz, and Nimisha are the kids in my van. Malaika is the eldest among us, she is going to be in 9 th grade now. One day Abdul Aziz (the youngest in our bus, he is going to begin the second grade), was babbling about how he went to the computer class, and when he came back to his class he found that somebody had stolen his pouch which had all his pencils and eraser in it, and how he was going to punch the face of the person who stole his pouch.  I tried to make him calm down. I whipped out m

Daniya's party

Remember that in my last post I told you that my BFF Daniya invited me to her party? Here is how it went…… We were to have dinner at Daniya’s house. I was really excited when we reached their home. We had parked our car outside a restaurant near their home.  Daniya and Anne came soon and we walked to their flat together. Daniya had worn a white anarkali and Anne had put on white pants and a black top.  They said I looked very different in my latcha, open hair and lip gloss. Anne said she came 10 minutes earlier than the time we were supposed to reach there. Daniya said, ”She came so early I was just putting on my eye shadow and I still had not combed my hair”. “I hope she was not scared when she saw you” I joked.    Chandana arrived 10 minutes after me. This time, all 3 of us went to meet her. She refused to remove her abayya, for some reason she felt embarrassed. I think it is because she usually wears traditional clothes like a skirt or latcha, but this time she was wea