Bring out the inner beast with 7UP Revive

Dubai is one of my most favorite places in the world. If you know me personally, you would know the number of people I’m acquainted with in Khalifa land. Yes, I have at least 50 relatives each, from both sides of the family. Crazy, isn’t it? So every time I visit (which is almost once and sometimes even twice a year), I have a zillion social gatherings to attend and places to check out. But this time, I wasn’t the one going to Dubai, in fact some of my closest cousins were flying down to Mumbai. Needless to say, I was excited beyond words. Since they were visiting the city of kaali peelis and rickshaws for the first time, obviously there was plenty in store for them. So I took it upon myself to plan their itinerary in order to give them a feel of the city of dreams. Keeping in mind their tight schedule (yeah, family get-togethers are never ending), we decided to dedicate a day solely to Mumbai Darshan. We couldn’t cover everything due to lack of time, but we wanted to make the most of all that was on our list. And so it began…

We started off with the iconic Siddhivinayak Temple. Since it was a Tuesday morning, it was quite crowded and we had to wait a while in the line that lets you inside the temple. Luckily, I had carried a few bottles of 7UP Revive (which BTW is India’s first hydrotonic drink launched by 7UP), which I handed out to each one of my entourage. It was going to be a long and hectic day ahead, so it was important for us to keep hydrating ourselves. A couple of sips and we were good to go. Once we entered, we took blessings of the great deity and soon after, left for our next destination – High Street Phoenix.

An all-girls trip is incomplete without some shopping and binging and luckily, this mall houses the best of both. We started shopping and as you know, it never really stops till someone drops…well, that’s exactly what happened in our case too. We went strolling about for a couple of hours and were eventually feeling drained out. Guess what came to our rescue? 7UP Revive! There’s just something amazing about this hydrating beverage. One sip and you start feeling fresh again as it helps replenish all the fluids and electrolytes that are lost while sweating. No matter how exhausted you may be, this instant replenisher surely helps to restore all that is lost and makes you super active super fast.

Now that we were fully recharged, we decided to proceed to South Mumbai to admire the stunning Queen’s Necklace, Marine Drive, VT Station and the iconic Gateway of India. At every destination, we halted for a few pictures. After all, we all need good Facebook profile pictures, don’t we? And who would ever miss capturing a silhouette against the setting sun at Marine Drive or a picture with the royal Taj Mahal Palace hotel in the background. Since we were close to Colaba Causeway, we decided to walk through the street and indulge in some street shopping as well. At first, we decided to stop at one of the cafes adorning the street to grab a quick bite, but then one of my cousins said, ‘Guys, I’m feeling quite energetic. This blue bottle is bringing out the beast in me. Do we really need to stop?’ So we joyfully sipped on our 7UP Revive bottles and proceeded as per plan.

It was about 5.30pm and we still had to drive through the Bandra-Worli Sealink, visit Mt. Mary Church and enjoy some Mumbai-special chaat at Juhu beach. So we quickly got into the car and took off to complete all that was left for the day. By the time we ticked everything off the list, it was 9pm and we couldn’t believe how active we were feeling as our day had begun at 10am. It is only natural to feel tired and low on energy if you’ve been out the entire day but we, on the other hand, were full of life. I guess it’s because we kept hydrating ourselves with 7UP Revive. Had we not, this scorching summer heat would’ve surely taken a toll on us. That’s when we decided to rename it as our ‘Sweat loss ka recharge.’ It truly brought all the fun and excitement back in our day every time we felt fatigued and lethargic.

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Happy Ganesh Chaturthi

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Chef Ganesha

Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most admired festivals in India. People eagerly wait for the merriments to begin as it is celebrated all over the country with fervor and excitement, especially in the state of Maharashtra. It is also celebrated in places outside India, which have a fair share of Hindu population.

According to Hindu Mythology, it is believed that Lord Ganesha, the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati was born on the fourth day (chaturthi) of the lunar month. This is why the sacred festival of Ganesh Chaturthi marks the birth of the elephant-headed god and is celebrated by devotees on a grand scale all over. Known popularly as the god of wisdom and prosperity, he is widely worshipped as Vigneshwara, the remover of obstacles. Revered as the deity of happiness, his blessings are invoked at all religious ceremonies or at the beginning of any auspicious work.

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Preparations for Ganesh Chaturthi begin a few months in advance when people start cleaning their houses to welcome the benevolent deity. Local craftsmen get busy creating idols of the lord in different shapes and sizes. Marquees or pandals are erected on brightly lit streets so that worshipers can make offerings and seek blessings.

On the day of the festival, life-sized idols adorn the streets while some idols are brought into houses and installed for a period of one and half, three, five, seven, ten or twelve days. Whatever may be the period; each idol is decorated with colourful garlands and jewelry and is worshipped with special prayers – morning and night. Piles of fruits and sweets especially modaks – an Indian sweet prepared using rice or flour with jaggery, coconut and dry fruits are offered to the lord along with other delicacies.

Ganesh idol at home

Celebrations continue with pomp and enthusiasm until the day of the visarjan when the idol is taken to a large water body for immersion. A long procession takes place where people dance, sing and celebrate on the streets. Once the idol reaches the lake, river, or sea, it is ceremoniously immersed in the water with cries of ‘Ganpati Bappa Moriya, Pudchya Varshi Lavakarya.’ (O Lord Ganpati, please come again next year).

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Ganesh idol at home

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 *All photographs belong to That Foodie Chick

My Special Chabbis

Since it’s my #SpecialChabbis today, I decided to list down 26 life lessons I’ve learned in 26 years. Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed writing it. Here’s to growing yet another year older by age but a year younger at heart.

1) Life’s too short to be taken seriously. Breathe. Have fun. Smileeeee! In fact smile a lot. Because there’s so much to smile about.

2) Eat good food. Because good food = good mood!

3) Travel…As far as you can for as long as you can. There is no better way to experience life.

4) Do what you love most and you will always be happy.

5) Take that leap of faith. If not now, then when?

6) No matter how many times you fail, don’t give up! Keep trying harder.

7) You know that thing they say about ‘quarter-life crisis?’ It’s for real! As you grow older, you realize not everything (rather nothing) makes sense. You question everything and hope to get an answer. You don’t know whom or what to trust anymore because everything feels different and strange. But that’s okay. Life has a way of figuring itself out. All you got to do is, hold on and trust the process.

8) Live in the moment. Nobody knows what’s in store for tomorrow. Stop planning your life and trust the life that has already been planned for you.

9) Everything happens for a reason. Yes, sometimes bad things happen to good people and its unfair but there’s always a reason behind it. Learn from it.

10) Sometimes no matter how much you want something, you won’t get it when you really want it. You’ll probably get it when you least expect it.

11) Life is one big leveler. What goes around ALWAYS comes back around!

12) In life, you will meet two kinds of people. Ones who build you up and ones that tear you down. But in the end, you’ll thank them both.

13) Things change. People change. Nothing lasts forever. And there’s nothing you can do about it. So stop whining.

14) The person you least expect from will surprise you and the person you expect most from will hurt you. That’s just the way it is. Deal with it!

15) Be yourself. The world is already filled with people trying to be who they’re not.

16) Make bad decisions. It helps you realize what you truly want and make better decisions later.

17) Don’t judge people. They’re all trying to figure it out…Just like you are.

18) You can’t change or undo your past. So let it go and start afresh.

19) Don’t always believe what you hear or see. No one’s life is as cool as it looks on Instagram or Facebook. Believe what you feel. And when in doubt, ask your heart! It always knows what’s best for you.

20) Your family is your constant cheerleader – no matter what you do, they’ll always be there to support you. Whether you’re happy, sad, angry, grumpy, moody, excited, they’re the ones who never give up on you.

21) Your friends are your true partners in crime. They’re the ones who make you smile a whole lot more when the world comes crashing down.

22) Get Inspired. There’s inspiration even in little things.

23) Make bucket lists. They act as a constant reminder to do things you’ve always wanted to do.

24) Love yourself…. Now & Forever!

25) Face your fears. Head on.

26) Be thankful. Because the more thankful you are for what you have, the more you’ll have to be thankful for 🙂

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Lessons in Photography – Polka Cafe

Lessons in Photography – Polka Cafe

Photography is all about exploring, experimenting and experiencing. My tryst with photography started in 2012 when I was gifted my first DSLR – a Canon 550D. Ever since I started clicking, there’s been no looking back. Every shoot has taught me something new about places, people, cultures and attitudes while every picture has made me learn from my mistakes and challenged me to capture better shots in the future. I have also interacted with individuals from all walks of life and realized that people who you least expect from are usually the most helpful ones.

I could probably go on and on about the things I have learnt ever since I’ve fallen in love with photography. However, listed below are five important lessons that I would like to share with you.

1) Do what you love – love what you do:
Like Confucius said, ‘Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.’ Don’t waste your life doing something to gain that extra buck if you don’t enjoy it. Instead, do something that makes you happy – money and fame will follow

2) Observe – There’s beauty in everything:
‘When you start to change the way you see things, the things you see start to change.’ – Wayne Dyer. Stop doing whatever you’re doing and observe what’s around you. You will realize that there’s beauty in every little thing you see

3) Face your fears:
Always remember – Miracles happen when you least expect it. If you truly believe in something, don’t give up, no matter what. Fear usually makes us weak and makes us lose hope if something doesn’t turn out as expected. But it’s important to face your fears headfirst and have faith in yourself

4) Be curious:
Curiosity makes you learn. It leaves you with an urge to know more about things which is extremely helpful in every field. Knowledge never goes to waste and hence being curious is important

5) Think big:
Sky is never the limit for your thoughts. Always think big and keep dreaming. This will motivate you to wake up everyday and work towards your dream.

 

Read more on http://www.polkacafe.com/lessons-in-photography-1519.html

Photo Diaries: Benares

“Older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend, and looks twice as old as all of them put together ” – Mark Twain

Benares also known as Varanasi and Kashi is the oldest city in the world that dates back to over 3000 years. It is the most popular pilgrimage for Hindus, also famous for its temples. In Hinduism, it is believed that those who die or are cremated here attain Moksha (liberation from the cycle of birth and death). The city is considered to be the abode of Lord Shiva and is situated on the banks of the holy River Ganges which is known to have the power to wash away all of one’s sins.

Spiritual Yatra, founded by Ms. Sarita Nair, an avid-traveler and explorer of spiritual destinations has tapped over 750 spiritual destinations across India. She not only highly recommends a pilgrimage to Benares but also guarantees it will be a journey that will remain etched in your memory for a lifetime.

Benares- Manikarnika Burning Ghat

Complete view of Benares

Ganga Ji – Benares

Benares- Night Pooja Ceremony

Dashashwamedha – Ghat Benares

The power of Prayer

Surrender to what is, let go of what was and have faith in what will be

Beads of Faith

To one who has Faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible

Prayer is not asking. It is putting oneself in the hands of God

God is everywhere. So pray anywhere

If the only prayer you said was Thank You, that would be enough

Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one

Silence is the language of Om. We need silence to be able to reach our Self

All photos belong to Desha Gehi Photography