I started the year determined to ‘Thrive‘ and flourish. I wanted to sort out the messier stuff, both in life and blogging and focus on what I love doing the most. But for that, I needed to take a step back and breathe, to think, to look outside, to look at the big picture and to ask for help, if and when needed.
I didn’t make a list of New Year Resolutions this year. Because I knew my priorities are straight and in check. My New Years’ started with a bang when my husband decided to surprise me by planning a trip to Dehradun and Mussourie. No, that was not it. He took me to the Indian Military Academy and I was overwhelmed with joy, love and gratitude seeing the Chetwode Hall, where inscribed in the oak paneling is the academy’s credo, excerpted from the speech of Field Marshal Chetwode at the inauguration of the academy in 1932:
The safety, honour and welfare of your country come first, always and every time.
The honour, welfare and comfort of the men you command come next.
Your own ease, comfort and safety come last, always and every time.
I believe in miracles. And this is my story:
Do you believe in miracles? In destiny?
15 years ago:
I looked up to Dad who was ‘clad in his Olive Green uniform’ and said, “Dad, I will get married only to someone like you”. He smiled.
Fast forward 11 years:
Dad had created ‘my profile’ in the Matrimonial site. One evening, I was watching a popular Tamil movie “Vaaranam Aayiram” for the zillionth time, and especially this particular scene where the actor comes out of the Military Academy, ‘clad in his uniform’. I found myself crying and praying to God.
And then at night…
Dad’s phone call..
to say about a marriage proposal.
Fast forward 6 more years:
Today, in the Military Academy, I know my prayers have been answered.
Overwhelmed, tears started rolling off my cheeks as gratitude to the stars up above.
Yes. Being next to ‘the Man in Olive Green’, I can say that I believe in miracles.
My husband knew how deeply moved I was with his gesture. It was equally overwhelming for him, having step foot in the Academy after 13 years of his training. When he recalled his life as a Gentleman Cadet in the Academy, my heart swell with pride. I had a smile throughout watching him narrate the strenuous training days, the first rope he had climbed in the obstacle course, the puddles of muddy water he had to crawl through, the balance, the hang, the jump – all kind of tactical movement they will use in combat.
We drove to Mussourie and boy, he had plans. When he took me to Cambridge Book Shop I shrieked in excitement. Because guess who I met that evening?
Yup. Ruskin Bond and I got two of my favorite books signed by him. Husband and I never went for sightseeing, not to Kempty Falls, not to Gun Hill. But I was over the moon and he was thoroughly enjoying my clapping hands and singing. Oh, you didn’t know? I sing, ‘La la la…” when I am elated. You should ask my college-mates. They will vouch for it. No wonder I came up with a similar tagline for this blog.
My joy knew no bounds when Dad visited us. That moment when I was with the men in my life at the Academy will be etched in my heart forever. We also visited Haridwar and Rishikesh and took a holy dip in the Ganges. The water was ice cold and I don’t know how Dad did it. Yeah, not us. We did it last summer. Gee! We also visited the Lotus Temple and Qutub Minar at Delhi and these few days went by a jiffy. But it was one of the most memorable days of my life. Be it the Ropeway ride, Dad’s first experience in Barbeque Nation, the visit to IMA and Forest Research Institute or my Dad devouring the delicacies I cooked for him at home.
I fell sick for the third time unable to bear the harsh winter. As I have told you dear readers a zillion times, this is my first winter in North India and I think I wasn’t prepared for it. But oh yeah, I did some great shopping getting that Olive Green Jacket (Love it!), Crochet work Tops and Sweaters (Love them too!!) and some funky footwear.
My Food Blog, Something’s Cooking was shortlisted for the Food Bloggers’ Association of India (FBAI) Awards and Orange Flower Awards conducted by Women’s Web. As a long lost friend of mine rightfully said, every one who cooks (even Maggi) is a food blogger these days. I do not know if I agree to that, but now I understand food blogging involves a lot of hard work. And when it pays off, you are thankful. I tried to focus more on the how’s and why’s of food blogging and getting a mere nomination itself had made me glad. But when I found my name in the Finalists, I was but exhilarated. Though I didn’t win (I was sad, obviously), I was happy for the winners and I realized that I had miles to go. God had another plan for me. I was chosen as the winner for Blog Rock Awards conducted by Ruchi from For Foodie Family. The impressive panel of Jury had scared me (Seriously!) and I never hoped to win. But I did! It was a huge boost for me and man, it came in the right time! Kudos to Ruchi for the hard work and dedication she had put in for organizing this event. Can’t thank her enough! I am impatiently waiting for my trophy and certificate.
That’s pretty much it. I couldn’t have asked for a better start to 2017. And guess what! I am so looking forward to February – it’s my favorite month of the year for it’s filled with love and happiness always. Oh, starting tomorrow because it’s our Wedding anniversary. More on that in my February Gratitude post.
Linking to the January 2017 Gratitude Circle bloghop at Vidya Sury, Collecting Smiles