Monthly Archives: November 2015

Travel Disaster pt 2

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Okay I needed that breather. Now for the rest of the story:

All is fine at this point (so I thought) I got a good snooze on the plane since that didn’t happen at JFK, and we are in Chicago! I enjoyed the few hours I had in Chicago. It reminded me of my youth as I grew up in Michigan less than an hour from Chicago. There were a lot of Indians at the airport but they looked different than NY’ers. Midwest Indians, how do I describe them..I guess “us” because my roots are there, although now I am a complete New Yorker to the core. Midwest Indians are good kids from good suburban homes. Clean looking, interesting more exotic names. They talk just like white people do but they are very Indianized and very proud of it. They appreciate the beauty of our culture. They all go to dance practice, be it for Diwali shows or weddings. They are pretty and young. The girls wear thick, perfect eyeliner. These were my thoughts as I waited to board my final flight lol. Oh, also I observed how regardless of Chicago being a major city, people were still slow. New Yorkers are always in a hurry!! These people were smiley too. New Yorkers are friendly but not overly smiley. We aren’t overboard about kindness as they are in the Midwest. We are kind, but its more real.

So the plane finally reaches my parents Iowan town and its circling. The Midwest got hit with snow on Friday and they felt the conditions were not safe enough to land, so what do they do???? Take us to some RANDOM TOWN IN THE MIDDLE OF NEBRASKA FOUR HOURS AWAY!!! (when I say 4 hours I mean driving distance. It was like 30 mins in the plane.) So we get off and I am furious!!! I call my dad and am screaming on the phone while these farm children call their families and laugh at the situation. UM no. I have already been through enough on this journey and its not like I have a lot of time off. Finally they decide they think they can try to take us back…thank god!! We get on the plane again and get to my parents town…they circle a bit and DECIDE TO GO BACK TO THAT NAMELESS TOWN IN NEBRASKA!!!! This time was horrible because they were getting ready to book us a hotel!!! I WAS NOT ABOUT TO STAY IN THIS EMPTY, FREEZING GHOST TOWN!!!

They decided to give it one last try around 8pm. THIRD IS A CHARM!!!! We landed. Thank god!!!!

CONCLUSION:

  • I will never fly out of LaGuardia ever again in my life.
  • I will make a very good attempt to avoid American Airlines as well.
  • I will never travel domestic in the winter/end of fall/beginning of spring ever again.

THE END.

 

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Travel Disasters pt 1

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Thursday afternoon, busy day in the office. Like, a little too busy trying to finish a project that was never-ending yet due the next day! With time being a constraint I left for the airport at 2pm. Reached LaGuardia at 2:30. Perfect! Just enough time to check in, relax and catch up on important things like social media and picture taking! Side note – I just let out a long sighhhh because I do not want to repeat this situation again it was so stressful – but its good blog content so here goes:

I go to my gate, flight delayed. Great, the delay will make things tight for me to get to my connecting flight. Lemme chat to the lady at the help desk. As I stand there 3rd in line, I look behind me to see a way to ridiculous line behind me. Like, it was so long, if I was towards the end…even the MIDDLE – I would have said hell no! (we are New Yorkers, we don’t have patience, we don’t need to apologize for that (remember this for a bit later in the scenario))  The weather in NYC that day was extremely windy and rainy – flights canceled & delayed everywhere.

So I spoke to the woman and all she could do was put me on standby for the next flight out. I have never dealt with standby – and there was even a line for the standby too. On top of that, THIS flight got delayed!!!

Here’s the thing, I was off to see my parents, they live in the middle of nowhere, USA. Iowa (hahaha) There are only 2 flights/day that go to their town. One around 1:30pm CST and the other around 8. So in my mind at this point, I was trying to figure out what plan B was going to me. I figured I was gonna have to stay at the Chicago airport overnight. I was pissed at this point. I went back to the desk and politely, yet firmly told the woman this is ridiculous and I am losing a day which means I only have a day and a half to see my parents. She added on a free day. That was nice and all but then I had to contact my boss, tell her the whole situation and then take another PTO.

At this point, the lady told me instead of going on another standby flight to just stick to my original flight because ah ha ha hah…it still was delayed (it was around 6:30 now) so I’m waiting and waiting. Everyone is waiting. Everyone is at the airport bar. Everyone is drunk. Everyone attacks the poor lady at the counter with their drunk anger. Even an old European man in a wheelchair. He got out of the wheelchair and got in her face!!!

 

ALAS, 10pm and flight is CANCELLED!!!!!!!!!!!!! AAARAAAHHHHHHH!!!! My blood was boiling at this point!!! As was everyone else’s!!! A phone number for the airline was handed out. I spoke to some retarded kid who thought he would be smart with me and tell me there were no flights. He obviously didn’t know who he was messing with. He put me on hold forever but then told me he will put me on a 7am flight…out of JFK. I had to take a shuttle to JFK and stay there overnight. I was going to wait at bit at LaGuardia and go later, because I had all night (!!!) but I thought it might be sketch to go later and I would need to be there to check in by like 5 so I just went then and there. It was about 12:30am now, and thank god I decided to go at that time because it was THE LAST SHUTTLE UNTIL 5AM. If I waited for the 5am, it takes 40 mins to get there so I would have missed flight again. God was on  my side for this.

hold on a second, I need to breathe before I continue…..(breathingbreathingbreathing… ifeelthestressalloveragain)

Okay so now I am at JFK and its so much nicer than LaGuardia so I was relieved for about 5 minutes. Security was closed so I had to wait on the front side. It was cold. I had to sit on the floor, which I don’t like to do. I found a plug though so I plugged in my phone and sat there. There were about 10 people there. So as I am sitting there minding my own business this Arab kid comes by and asks to use the other plug. He sits next to me and starts yapping on the phone in Arabic. He has with him a bunch of pastries and offers me one, as he ended his call. I say “no thank you”. He starts talking to me and tells me he’s going back home to Dubai (here’s where I mess up because I hear “Dubai” and my eyes light up) so we chatted and he’s over-chatting. He’s in school in Missouri and said his flight back to Dubai is at 4pm the next day and I tell him to go explore NYC. He said he only has a light jacket so no. He had braces, that’s great but they kinda grossed me out. He said he has a female friend from India and our religion is very strict (really? You are muslim…uhhh) he tells me the girl is a virgin. I’m like okay buddy, BYEE FELICIA. After a while he thankfully wandered off for a long time, then came back and did his morning prayer…here’s when the security check points opened up and I bounced……

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Diwali !!!!

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Happy Diwali !!!!

Happy Diwali!!

art,colors,diwali,festival,india,rangoli-48187291ec7a92e5c38f69a1efa3223b_h

What is Diwali says the non-Indians who might be reading this. I just told my coworker about Diwali and described it as the Indian New Year, then he asks me “so what year is it” – hahahhahaahhahah #Ilovefunnyjokes – he expects me to look that up and tell him …..errrrr….

Diwali is the largest, brightest festival in India. Known as our New Years, it is the festival of lights. Diwali is celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists to mark different historical events, stories or myths but they all symbolise the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil, hope over despair. I won’t get into too much detail of the religious aspect, but the mythological story goes that  Hindus celebrate Diwali in honor of the return of Lord Rama, his wife Sita & brother Lakshman returned from his exile of 14 years. Villagers lit Diyas, or candles so he could find his path. Here is a fun, easy to read (because it’s directed to children lol) version of the story if you want to get the gist of some background in a quick, light, fun way:

Ramayana (feel free to print out the coloring pages if you are bored 😉 )

So what is Diwali to me? Diwali means (or meant) dance practice! Always! From junior high until college. If I remember correctly, we would start about a month and a half or so before our community (or school, when I was in college) Diwali function. Dance practice was always sooo much fun!!! I got to see my friends and we got to get creative and work on a dance. Well, when I was younger, we had the adults teach us and we had to follow their routines. In college though – we got extremely creative!! There were a lot of great dancers/dance groups and performances and my friends and I wouldn’t have that! lol! We had to be the best! We never repeated steps, always did some acting and shock factor, one time we did our entrance from the audience, instead of the stage and nobody knew where were at until we got on stage! That dance was awesome! We always did medleys too but that’s pretty standard. One time we carried “pots” which were actually pumpkin shaped candy baskets (Diwali falls around Halloween, lol) and we put sparkly confetti in it and threw it out at the audience hahahahah!!!! The people sitting in the front row freaked out!!! They probably thought we were going to throw water at them LOL.

I remember how nerve wracking it was while we waited back stage during the dance before ours. It was hot and cold at the same time! I remember this one year we had this really difficult step. I was so worried I was going to screw up once on stage!! The step involved a jump with a turn and then a pose. When we were to jump though, we had a mid-air pose and then had to turn our leg the other way for the turn. We got it off a Bollywood song and it was complicated. I never got it right during practice but somehowww when I was on stage, I aced it perfectly!!! And when I saw the video the effect looked so much nicer with our lengha’s on. I’ve learned the outfits make the steps look soo much nicer sometimes!

Speaking of dressing up – yessss…of course Diwali is the best excuse for women to dress up and break out our best jewels, bindis and mendhi (“henna” – btw I hate that word. Never heard it until I heard Gwen Stefani say it) Men dress up in their best kurthas as well.

In India, they light firecrackers (that are more like bombs, dare I say with the risk of some ignorant terrorist comment) they hit up the temples, decorate homes with beautiful diyas (lamps), lights, they decorate entryway in the front of their house with rangoli (basically an art form in which patterns are created on the floor in living rooms or courtyards using materials such as colored rice, dry flour, colored sand or flower petals.)

simple Rangoli example

simple Rangoli example

Diwali-rangoli-Multi-color-designs-photos-3_PerfectlyClear

And just like every other place in the world during the biggest holiday of the year, families get together and eat and eat and eat…and then drink chai!

Hopefully I’ll be able to be in India during Diwali one of these upcoming years!

http://www.indiatimes.com/culture/who-we-are/11-little-known-stories-about-diwali-you-need-to-know-before-you-light-your-first-diya-247121.html

Here are some Diwali related celebration images/art, diyas and rangoli I would like to share with you:

diwali_fullspreads-8-1 part-2-body diwali-10-638

Christmas-Beautiful-Wedding-Hand-Mehndi-Designs-313443_200082917032_670267032_3848829_5647669_n cracker-touchd26_20763081

Works-of-art-by-Adobe-employees-e1352504091418 il_340x270_576294086_mw4p

1025200855521

maxresdefaultwavjigwvyrcgsbhc_D_0_Diwali-2011-Diya-DecorationDiwali-Diyas-Decoration-Ideas-Wallpaper Diwali-2015-Designs-Rangolis-Paintings-Greetings-for-Kids-Students-3

??????????????????????

847%20rama%20copy p-044

6280700942_bdf451be21diwali rangoli designs

Latest-Mehndi-Designs-2015-for-Eid-Season-1681x617xNew-Rangoli-Design-266_jpg_pagespeed_ic_N6tB0c2p87diwaliPAGE-DIWALI-FREMONT-01-IMG_0726diwali-milan

Are you game for a trip around the world?!??!

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Are you game for a trip around the world?!??!

Zaji Girl Vespa

I just read this article:

http://www.indiatimes.com/news/world/this-indian-family-just-drove-down-from-bengaluru-to-paris-in-111-days-247032.html

Dang son!!!! What an amazing adventure!! I remember reading about the girl (now that I think about it, I remember reading about 2 different girls. Australians. I think?) who sailed around the world. I’ve heard plenty of stories in my days of people who have flown an around the world trip. Sounds cool! Sounds a bit too good to be true though. And expensive!! I thought I would check it out and go over it with my lovely blog readers. So yes, lets check it out together and plan a fake trip!! 🙂

Here’s a website I found:

http://www.skyteam.com/en/Flights-and-Destinations/Round-the-World-Planner/

So after I clicked on “Build your Round the World Itinerary” and got to the page with the rules I was like whatareyousayingthisiswaytoocomplicatedtoprocessonafridaymorningughhhh

I mean obviously there are rules but I totally feel sorry for the people who work customer service for this company after I read/or tried to read the rules. Anyways, lets plan the trip!!

I went with option #1 on the left hand side of the screen.

  • Start off in NYC of course (I chose JFK airport & decided to go Eastbound)

(I really wanted to stop in Trinidad but ITDIDNTLETME!!!!)

  • Havana, Cuba (assuming US citizens can go there now!!)
  • Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
  • Marrakech, Morocco (This was tough bc I’d like to go to Casablanca too and some other places, but I once met a Moroccan who told me Marrakech is just like Aladdin, so yeah. Done)
  • Nice, France (although I would love to explore Monaco , Cannes, St. Tropez and other parts of the South of France..this was a tough choice too)
  • Venice, Italy (God, another hard one!!! Italy is one of those places in which I want to explore many places throughout the country!!)
  • Split, Croatia
  • Mykonos, Greece
  • Istanbul, Turkey
  • Cairo, Egypt
  • Larnaca, Cyprus
  • Dubai, UAE
  • Mumbai, India
  • Male, Maldives

amIdoneyet????

#NO!

*#!^&*@%#?!&#^%#*^$#@% !!!!!!

  • Phuket, Thailand
  • Cebu, Philippines
  • Guam (I actually was trying to figure out an exotic island in this region OMG the pics I found of Guam look ABSOLUTELY BREATHTAKING!!)
  • Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Papeete, French Polynesia
  • San Jose Cabo, Mexico
  • Roatan, Honduras

Okay so I clicked the button to create the flight path and they told me my list is invalid!! LOL. I think it didn’t work because follow the rules regarding the flight path and well, my list is just LONG. Luckily I was just playing! But if the opportunity DOES strike for me to embark on such an adventure….its going to take foreverrrrr to plan!!!

My thoughts on this website though (although I am assuming anywhere you try to book an around the world trip would all be similar) kinda is annoying because you take so much time figuring out where you want to go and do research on new, exotic places to add to your list, and then they wanna tell you your trip is invalid. FAIL. It just seems tedious & time consuming. Plus I wonder how long you are able to stay at each destination, which is a whole nuther set of planning and researching!! I usually like to take little excursions when I go places too. But I guess if you are focused, determined and plan it all properly I’m sure it would be an experience of a lifetime for sure!!!! It’s IS something that I wouldn’t mind adding to my bucketlist. I think I would want to make sure I was financially stable enough and able to take the time. So could be a future bucketlist addition for sure!

How did you guys do??? Let me know if you tried it out & where you planned on going!

Travel-the-world-monuments-concept

Trains, Cars, Rails. How do you travel? The Daily Commute

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So this morning was funny. Four metrocard machines, and ALL broken. When I say broken, I mean they all were only accepting cash not cards. I used to never carry cash but then someone once told me its always good to carry some cash here & there to be safe. So now, I usually do. This morning I needed to fill my metrocard, luckily I had a $10 on me. As a busy New Yorker these things frustrate us. In fact, the MTA has really been on my nerves the last few months! Within the past say 2 months, my metrocard has gotten “ruined” some how and unusable. What’s annoying was the first time this happened, I filled it the day before with about $30. The seconds time it had about $15. That’s a lot considering it’s wasted in metrocard la la land!!! They say you can “mail in’ your card and get refunded. Ain’t nobody got time for that!!! Plus someone told me they did that once and never heard back! UGGGHHHHHH.

Anyways, it just reminded me about how growing up in Michigan everyone drove. Most places within this country people drive. America is mostly suburban if you think about it. Some cities are better at buses. I went to college in Minneapolis which was a very bus friendly city. I bus’d it so much that ever since I’ve lived in NYC I swore to God I would never take a bus again LOL.

Its interesting how someone’s daily commute which is so normal to them is odd to others. Like if I got my dream job in Bollywood (lol but for real yo!) and had to move to Mumbai and take a rickshaw to my daily office job as I waited for my big break…I couldn’t imagine traveling on a rickshaw as my daily commute but people do it! I remember before I moved to NY I thought the subway was “fun” …LOLLLL. I actually know people in NY who cab it everywhere they go. Strange to me but it works for them. There are also water taxis to Jersey and Staten Island.

Personally, my favorite mode of transport is walking. I walk a lot and as much as I can. I don’t live far from work so almost always I walk home. Keeps me fit and to me, it’s the easiest, quickest and most therapeutic. Trust me, I’ve been called crazy but I brush it off, because I know at least I’m keeping myself healthy while the people who think its strange are the ones who don’t understand why they can’t lose weight or maintain it and feel gross all the time.

https://urbanful.org/2015/03/02/12-unconventional-ways-commuting-around-world/