Tuesday, March 24, 2015


‘Kellogg’s wale Guptaji’, he was famous with this name in our colony. You guys must be thinking that why anyone is known by Kellogg’s? The reason behind the name was Mrs. Gupta’s unique recipes created with Kellogg’s cornflakes. You guys must be wondering what kind of recipes Sonal is talking about? What can be created with Cornflakes? Can it be so awesome that person’s identity is replaced with the brand?

The answer is, “YES”. They can be awesome and trust me, if any of you would have breakfast at Guptaji’s house then you, too would repeat my lines. Guptaji’s family is like common family with husband, wife and two kids. In our colony everyone tries to get an invitation for breakfast at Guptaji’s house. When I came new to this colony, people seemed crazy to me, who were going gaga over Guptaji’s breakfasts. With passing of time, I settled down in colony. Like any typical housewife, I, too faced same problem and question. “What should be there in breakfast today? “ Though I was blessed in this matter as my husband was crazy about Poha and so I didn’t worry much about him but whenever any of the relatives visited, I felt there must be some unique recipe for breakfast which I can use to impress my relatives. I was newly married so this thing mattered to me the most as it was issue of my image in family. Like any Indian housewife, one day I asked my neighbor for few recipes for breakfast. She smiled and said,” I can give you some but they are very common, if you wish to create something different, then you must visit ‘Kellogg’s wale Guptaji’s house. She has treasure-box of recipes that too created with cornflakes.” I wondered,” What can be so unique in simple cornflakes?” However I smiled and retired to my adobe.

Next day as I decided, I prepared some Dhoklas and headed towards ‘Kellogg’s wale Guptaji’s house. I entered their house with smile plastered all over my face. As I entered their house, smell of chocolate, walnuts and roasted cornflakes greeted my nostrils. I was already impressed as walnuts and chocolates were my weakness. Their combination made me go on knees. Mrs. Guptaji broke my chain of thoughts and welcomed me to their house and asked me join them for breakfast. I cordially accepted the invitation and sat down with them. ‘Walnut Cornflakes Choco Balls’ this item stared me back from the dish and was wondering how would be the taste of item? I bite into one ball and to my astonishment the breakfast was out of this world. I gobbled up many balls and asked for more shamelessly. After filling up my tummy, I smiled shyly and asked Mrs. Guptaji the recipe.

She generously shared the recipe and gave me many more recipes to make my mornings tasty and healthy.

Now, I’m also fan of ‘Kellogg’s wale Guptaji’ and wait to get an invitation for breakfast. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015


The word Happiness itself brings out image of smiling and cheering people around us. The definition of happiness differs from person to person. For someone it may reside in IPhone 6 and for someone it may reside in Nokia 1100. For someone it may be there in world tour and for someone it may be there in having picnic at nearby park. Whatever the form maybe but the ultimate thing is the happiness. People around the world survive on his single factor and its happiness.

When we discuss about happiness, does it need to be grand or luxurious? No, it can be very simple and sober. I’m a housewife living in Delhi. As I said before happiness can differ from person to person. Though I live in Delhi, the concept of happiness was never buying cosmetics or shopping at Zaara’s. It’s concept of People around the country for housewives of Delhi. But for me it’s not the happiness. For me few are the simple facts which bring happiness to me. They are as below.

Happiness for me is when I can’t wake up due to health issues or my habit of sleeping late (it’s regular, actually.) and my husband cooks awesome breakfast for me and then wakes me up with love and care and asks me to enjoy the awesome breakfast.  It may be very simple thing for someone devoid of all the emotions but for me it’s world’s most loving gesture as It shows his concern and care for me.

Happiness for me is when I cook pizza sandwich for my father in law, whenever I visit my in-law’s house at Rajasthan. My in-law’s village is very remote one and it is impossible to find thirty minute delivery there. There is no facility of microwave or pizza bases but my father-in-law loves pizzas a lot. They rarely visit Delhi so whenever I go to my in-law’s house, I bring bread, sandwich maker and cheese and oregano. I prepare sandwich pizza and watching my Papaji relishing the sandwich gives me immense pleasure and happiness. It gives me more happiness then buying Lakme or Prada.
Happiness is watching your 8 month old niece trying to climb your lap, holding your hands, face and ears. The moment she tries imitate you in kissing. The moment you try to capture selfie with her and being new generation kiddo she smiles and poses like a genius. Happiness is you spend hardly a day with her in two or three months, but she remembers you and does not cry while coming to your lap. Happiness is when she loves to be in your arms rather than in her mother’s.

Yes, Happiness resides in smallest and simplest things. It may be smiles of your loved ones, care and love of your husband. Happiness is smile of your loved ones and your heart.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Review of Myriad Tales-A Season of Thrills, Chills & Spills

Writing Style: 4/5 

‘Myriad Tales-A Season of Thrills, Chills & Spills’ is collection of 32 stories on Horror, Comedy and Thrillers. A wonderful collection with different genres. Market is flooded with anthologies based on love-stories and as one said that too sweet can be boring sometimes. I, too started looking for something different rather than stolen glances, love-letters and tear-soaked pillows. Thanks to facebook, I got news about this book and from the very announcement of this book; I was waiting to grab the book. The moment I got the book, I started reading it and fell in love with the book. Horror, Comedy and Thriller all the three genres combined in one book. One story will make you keep lights on even in daylight and another one would make you fall from sofa due to laughter.  Few stories will make you bite your nails with suspense. Sounds amazing, isn’t it? Each and every story is unique in itself.

At beginning, I felt like listing down my favorite stories but as I took a look at the index, I realized that I will have to mention all the stories. So I must say that each and every story.

Guns and Roses by Akash Shrivastav reminded me of few thriller movies of Bollywood and Hollywood. Twisted at end.

Prank  by Nikhil Uprety is a horror story which will leave you sweating in winter.

Battle of Wits by Rafaa Dalvi is really a good one and will leave an imprint in your mind.

Duplicity by Alexander Altman is story of crime and revenge, a cruel one in nature.

The Unwelcome Guest by Dr. Roshan Radhakrishnan is a story which will send chills through your spines.

Atarahbaham- Mahabharata remixed!!! By Suhail Mathur is awesome piece of imagination and creativity.

The Raveled Mystery by Saurabh Chawla by is such a story which once again reminded me of few Bollywood thrillers.

Seat Number 66 by Vaisakhi Mishra is really horrifying story. If made into movie, it surely gonna make to list of most horrific movies of world.

Spectacles in Goa by Anil Antony will bring out mixture of pity and humor.

The Lay who Loved Tea Too Much by Ritesh Agarwal is a wonderful story of addiction of tea and love.

Gem of a Thief by David Singh will remind you of Bollywood thrillers.

The Facebook Girl by Dr. Vivek Banerjee is a story which made me unfriend few unknown people from my list. Really a creepy one.

Fundawear by Saurabh Mishra is really awesome piece. Sometimes exceeded excitement and thrill can turn into nightmares.

The Poison Ivy by Priyaa Trippayar Sahasranaman is story set in foreign land with ups and downs of love triangle, greed and jealousy.

The Deal by Tapobrata Kumar is a heart touching tale of dilemma. Dilemma of selection between love and duty towards nation.

401 Wellington Avenue by Nobanita Dhar is horror story with mixture of horror and kindness. It will horrify you at beginning and kindle with kindness at end.

The Love Story by Upneet Grover is story of one sided love. Characters are not as heroic as other love stories but real life characters.

Twisted Fate by Chandrapal Khasiya is tale depicting the realities of so-called babas in our society. Somehow I felt title is not appropriate and beginning could be different.

Raped by Raviraj Ramavarapu is wonderful story depicting our obsession with crime serials, yet author could make it more interesting.

The Black Pearls by Sufia Khatoon is horror story and it’s really a horrible one.

It’s Time by Arka Chakrabarti is tale of love, ambitions and betrayal. Emotions are wonderfully described in this story. Heart-touching story.
The Venomous Vault by Ayush Agarwal is really horrifying tale of psychiatric disorder.

Today’s Special Poison by Uwais Zubair Sait is thriller story which would leave you in amazement. A wonderful read.

3 AM When Reality Met Illusion by Neoni D’souza is horror story with poetic justice at end. However I felt that writer was not able to keep the suspense hidden.

Paint it Red by Rahul Mohan Sharma is story of humanity and pity. Story could be more entertaining with lighter treatment.

The Letter by Ayush Agarwal is a story which made me tremble with fear. This guy must try in script- writing for horror and thriller stories.

Project Phantasm by Kosha Srivastava is sci-fi story which will leave you agonized.

Drishti by Praveen Sinha is wonderful story which will grasp you totally.

Unraveling The Night by Amogh Srivastav is comic yet thrilling story and makes reader alert.

Messed Up by Shipra Jain is a story which once again reminded me of few Bollywood thrillers. A good factor about story is it’s grasp and clarity of events.

The Forgery by Arka Datta is a wonderful narrative which describes the rule that hard work never fails. Your hard work will pay you in one or another form, sooner or later.

Honeymoon of the Haunted by Mihir shah is a horror story with chewed storyline and reader’s craving for something new might not be satisfied.

 I really wish to read many more stories like this. I really wish that book provided stories till eternity. A must read for those who tired of love stories. Something that will make you crave for more.

My overall rating for this work is 4/5. 

Genre: Fiction
Paperback: 360 pages
Publisher: Half Baked Beans Publishing
Language: English

Saturday, March 14, 2015


In our Indian tradition, girls are bound to leave their house after marriage. Their willingness or unwillingness never bothered world and maybe would never ever bother about this fact. From my childhood I, too heard these words,” This is not your house. You will go to your own house after marriage.” Of course, not from my parents but neighbours and society. I always took the words lightly as I had a nature due to which I never bothered about anything unless I face it. Same happened in case of marriage. 

I got engaged to my hubby in June 2013. He was an engineer in Pune. Pune was much near to my city compared to other cities where Agrawal girls were married off. My mother was really happy because my elder sister was married in Delhi and compared to her I was married nearby our house. But as it says,” Man proposes and God deposes.” After one or two months of our engagement my hubby went to Israel and there he was selected in company based in Noida with higher package. My hubby and in-laws were so happy. I, too was happy as my hubby got promoted but my mummy was little bit down due to our settlement in Noida. However, this fact never mattered as my hubby was a very good son-in-law and my heart was already with him, in our courtship of two to three months.

I got married in December 2013 and left my parents’ house and went to mine (as those people said). My mummy and I kept calling each other regularly. Every time my mummy called she would ask only one question,” When will you be in Anand, Sonal?” I would then handover the phone to my hubby, who would start giving excuses and would change the topic. I, too was enjoying most beautiful days of my life, still I was missing my mommy so badly. I had spectacles and we decided to remove it with Lasik operation and luckily it was decided that I would get operated in Ahmedabad near to my Anand city. So as soon as everything was decided my brother came to take me home. My brother and I left for Anand. Our train reached to Anand at 04:30. As my brother was with me, I had not expected that anyone else would come ther to receive me. But behold! As soon as I got down from train, my mommy hugged me tightly and tears started flowing from her eyes. I, too was surprised to see my mommy at railway station in this much early morning. My eyes, too wailed up and I hugged her back. That whole day, my mommy kept feeding me with my favourite dishes and while she was not feeding me, that whole time she just embraced me and soaked my hair with tears.

That was the most memorable day of life. Till this day I just heard of stories describing love of married daughter and mother but today I experienced it.


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

My Bold Step

Most of the human pass their life by following the path trodden by others. Very few have capacity and will-power to take the untraded path. It needs immense courage and inner strength to do what is never done before.

It’s not necessary that this bold step must be something very big. It can be at very minor level. This bold step which can change one’s life can bring out positive or negative results but the main fact about this whole procedure is the courage one needs to take the bold step. It happened with me, too. I, took bold step. As I said above, it is not necessary that step needs to be a giant one, affecting the whole world or community. Mine bold step was also a minor one but it actually changed my life.

The story goes back in 2011. Due to my brilliant performance in study as well as co-curricular activities, principal of my college asked me to appear in interviews going on for post of lecturer. It was reality that my performance was really well and I was brightest student of English Literature in whole college. Whether it was group- discussion or seminar, I always got first or second number. But as it is said, “No one is perfect.” I, too had weakness and it was “Literary Criticism.” I tried my best to memorize and understand all the theories, but I couldn’t remember more than first and last paragraph. The middle part of theories, I wrote in exam was mixture of all the theories. The only theory I could remember was Arnold’s “Touch-Stone Method” and those who have poked their noses in literature would know that it is the simplest theory in whole criticism.

As soon as my interview got scheduled, I started bombarding my faculties with questions that what would be there in interview. Being my faculty, my HOD advised me not to reveal the fact that I was weak in criticism as it is considered base of literature. I was bit perplexed because It was my first job and I did not wish to lie. I just nodded my head and left for interview.

Interview started and it was going very well. Then calamity struck, interviewee asked me to throw me some light on literary theories. My breath got stuck. Doom’s moment had arrived. My mind flooded with arguments. Winged angel was asking to say truth, whatever may be the consequences. Horned devil asked me to lie as my faculties suggested. As it gave me assurance of job, I started weighing both sides’ arguments. Devil was about to win but winged angel reminded me of saying, “Nobody is perfect.”

I replied with confidence and smile,” Sir, I need to tell you something honestly. I’m good in  poetry, novel and history of English literature but criticism is not my cup of tea.” Interviewee looked at others in panel and smiled. He asked me to wait outside. I could see frown on face of my faculty. I just smiled back and left the room.

Till to days, I didn’t get a single call from my college regarding interviews. I was losing hope and getting frustrated. After few days I received call from my  principal. He said,” You little devil, you had almost ruined everything but thank God that they loved your honesty and has asked me to hire you for teaching English language.”

I smiled and disconnected the call after some formal conversation. My one bold step of saying truth had got me job and honor.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

The Moment

During my schooldays I had been an average student. Thanks to my hatred for maths and science and civics. I had good command over English language, I loved it wholly, so after completing my 10th I decided to go for humanities and took up English as my main subject. Behind this selection there was a reason. From my childhood I had a dream. I wished to be a professor in college. When my other friends wished to be teachers in school, I always said, I would rather be a lecturer in college than in school. I was bright student in college as I was studying my favourite subject, English Literature. I was mentally growing up very well. 

I used to participate in each and every activity very enthusiastically. But it is very necessary for you that your faculties also support you in same way. Unluckily, I was not good at buttering so I was not apple of eye for some of my faculties. As a result, my talent and knowledge was out of coverage for them all. My parents, too did not like this fact about my graduation. My mummy always asked me, Sonal, Why you have to participate, if hard work goes unnoticed?” I could understand my mother’s agony but I felt that this was nurturing my skills and it actually helped me a lot. My stage fear vanished, I became fluent in English. Yet, I had a question in my mind.

“When I will get fruit of my hardwork?”

God has his own ways and timing to answer our questions. If your prayers don’t work, just understand, it’s not the time. God has decided something else for you and it gonna place you on cloud nine.

I completed my graduation and for masters I got admission in another college. God started answering my prayers. Gradually, I was becoming very famous student in both graduation and post-graduation level. I was known for my quick and witty answers, anchoring, and group discussions. My results were also quite high. Like previous college, I participated in each and every activity. But here, I was getting enough encouragement and coverage. I was famous and favourite amongst students and faculties. But principal never seemed to appreciate my work. 

Days passed and I entered in final semester. I got in writing poetry and published it in college magazine. Few days later, I was getting out of college and suddenly, peon of our college called me from behind,” Sonalji, principal sir is calling you.” Before I could ask anything, he got engaged in another work. I was frightened. My heart started beating fast. Questions started whirling around me. Why is he calling me? Did I make any blunder? Will he punish me for something? 

With trembling legs, I entered in his office. 

He looked up and smiled at me and said,” Sonal, have a seat. I was just going through your poems in college magazine. They are really nice.” 

I smiled foolishly and fumbled,” Oh, yes sir, did you notice? Thanks for your appreciation sir.” He continued,” Sonal?” 

I said,” Yes, sir.”

He said,” There is vacancy in our college. You can have a look at the advertisement in newspaper at library. Apply for it. You are bright student. College will be proud having you as a faculty.” 

After these words, whatever he said, left unnoticed, unheard to me. As I was dumbstruck with happiness. After his approval, I left his office and as soon as I left office I jumped with joy and shouted with happiness. 

I was appointed in my own college, even before I passed my masters. I was on cloud nine. I was dancing with joy and informed everyone in college and rushed to home to inform my mom.
My mom had tears of happiness in her eyes. She cupped my face and said,” Now, you have got answers to your prayers, my love.” 

I had got answers to my prayers and this was the moment. The moment I spent in principal’s office, had changed my life. It filled me with optimism and hope that hard work always works. God always decides well for you. God will provide you a moment, which will bless you for rest of your life. Will fill you with all the happiness, hope and optimism.