School Camp!

Lets talk about winning, losing and my school camp today.

Yesterday , I came back from my school’s camp. These few days were filled with dancing, singing, new experiences, wins, losses ,games, crazy late night fun, swimming, travel, dress up, oration, great food, a beautiful location, life lessons and so much more. Today, though we’re only talking about a few of the many things that I did and that happened over the course of these days that have actually changed me, some way or the other.

Over the course of the camp, I’ve learnt to be thankful, to tell people when I find something about them good, talk to various kinds of people, gained significant insight into my own gender(This is an achievement for a girl who has been borderline tomboyish all her life), sang solo for the first time(It went disastrously and I was practically shaking because it was suddenly sprung on me but made a good experience nonetheless),won a few prizes, lost some competitions, won a major prize(Which I’ll talk about in detail for the rest of the post) and made so many new friends and acquaintances.(From my own school and others)

The aforementioned major prize was won in what has been a tradition in the school, something called a ‘Personality Pageant.’ It is a contest with many rounds including but not limited to, the first interview, an introduction round where you do a catwalk and can feel all model-like and  then introduce yourself to the judges and answer one common question, a talent round(Where I did a little impromptu jig) and a long gruelling one-on-one question answer round.

In the introduction round, our question was ” Where do you see yourself in the next 5-7 years and what have you done about it? “My answer was about how much I love writing, expressing myself, doing creative things and want to see myself somewhere in that field and as to what I’ve done for it, I talked about this blog. In my Q and A round I was mostly asked about the blog and writing and my round was (Or maybe so I felt) the longest. I’ve always been a whimsical(Aha!) person, so I was honest and quick and  would say what I actually wanted to say in all my answers with a smile and the judges actually stopped questioning me in between and had a 2 minute discussion before speaking with me again. They seemed quite happy and told me how glad they were to see how passionate I was about what I did and  even told me they look forward to my next blog post.

In the end, I was runner’s up among 800 girls from 12 schools. I won a lot of prizes for this,  one for a improv prop dance I’d done before, group prizes for the school and the overall Champions prize at the camp.(Yes, we did dance on the Champion song afterwards.) I was stunned to find that in all honesty, I was beyond elated at winning and didn’t care that I’d lost to one person, or lost any other competition(Like the solo singing) for the matter. I was happy, I had learnt a lot and the pageant was, for obvious reasons, my favourite part of the camp.

The trophy!

I got a wonderful batch of memories to take home, life lessons and experiences the like of which I’ll probably never have again.Who, in the right mind would call this losing? What, to one person? What is one prize extra compared to all that I’ve gained?This is winning in its best form, winning at making the best of the life we’ve got and living it to the fullest. And that, all it takes to be a winner is for you to feel like one, is the best lesson I’ve learnt at camp.


The Best Rainbows Ever!

Lets talk about the time I saw two rainbows together and one of them was round.

Rainbows are, to put it in one word, fascinating. A break from the usual monotony of blue in the day and dark in the night, a whole spectrum of 7 colours  to observe, these days they’ve become a rather rare phenomenon. I have,in my life seen a total of 7 rainbows, three slightly visible ones,2 huge ones over the city and 2 together in the midst of snow capped hills and brown mountains,next to the sparkling blue waters of a lake and one of them was round. It is definitely the best one I’ve ever seen and currently also the most recent.

In the summer of last year, my family and I went to Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, India for a trip. I saw many wondrous and exotic things there but today, I limit myself to the coloured wonders, the two rainbows. We went to Pengong Lake, the world’s highest saltwater lake situated at 14,000 ft. above the mean sea level and were going to spend the night there, at a camp. We went through an absolutely breathtaking road, covered and surrounded almost wholly with and by snow. Eventually, from the distance we saw Pengong Lake,its blue waters glittering in between the mountains, a jewel in the cold desert.

The road to heaven.
The view from the road at 17,000 ft. above mean sea level.
The first glimpse of the lake.


Believed to be what remains of the Tethys sea today, this beautiful blue saltwater lake was extremely enchanting, a marvel for the human race, who’ve come so far and yet are nullifying their effects by a tenfold. We had fun on the lakeside, enjoyed the view and admired the water birds who made crow like sounds(I haven’t been able to find their names out) and retired to the camp. The next morning, we went to the lakeside again and saw, to our wonder, two rainbows in the sky. One was fainter and the other, around the sun, like a ring. It was absolutely picturesque. The water too, was a different shade of blue that it was last evening. In that moment, I knew that if heaven existed, it had to be right here, right now in this place that fills me up with so much peace and happiness in amounts I thought I wasn’t capable of feeling.


The unnamed water birds.


I tried to capture the halo that is, the round rainbow (As I later found it is called) but couldn’t, due to the fact that I didn’t have the appropriate camera lenses. I read up on halos, much afterward and this is what they’re defined to be:”A halo, also known as a nimbus, ice bow or gloriole is an optical phenomenon produced by light interacting with ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere, resulting in a wide variety of coloured or white rings, arcs or spots in the sky. Many halos are near the sun or moon but others can even occur elsewhere in the sky.”

The fainter rainbow in the sky.
One of my numerous attempts to capture the halo, in bits and pieces if I had to ,to take it back with me.
Another attempt.
The best possible capture, which doesn’t even begin to show the actual beauty of the halo.

I feel glad, blessed and so lucky to have been able to behold this wonder of nature, this specimen of, or testament to its beauty, this captivating,alluring view. I would if given a chance, in a heartbeat go right back to Pengong Lake, the land of beauty and grace, where the gods descend and nature is having a celebration of life itself.



Lets talk about surprises today.

Humans are vastly interesting and fairly amusing creatures. No other mammal, forget organism would like a surprise, being caught off guard, having something apart from normal happen to them. Their reaction would be the usual, fight or flight that they’re wired with since birth. Then why, we, the inhabitants of the same planet as them, love surprises, adore them and work so hard for them?

I had this question answered for me yesterday when my friends and family threw me a splendid and out-of-the-world surprise birthday party. The moment I entered home and they all yelled ‘Surprise!’ started a chain of emotions inside me, too many altogether, that I attempt to dissect today.

The first thing I did was put my hands to my face, the remnants of the fight or flight reaction, the sign of my ancestry. Then, I blinked and asked my mother, ‘Is this for real?’ that is  I was shocked, stunned. Once reassured, I laughed mostly out of happiness but also due to the traces of disbelief still remaining. Then, it hit me that all these people loved me enough to put so much time, energy and effort into me. At that point I hugged my sister, I was so elated. Then with a smile that just refused to leave my face simply due to the fact that I felt overwhelmed, loved and blessed I proceeded with the treasure hunt my friends set me to find my gifts.

It was a great hunt that led me to truly amazing and very thoughtful gifts and my happiness went up several notches. Through a video, a photo collage and two cakes (both of which are featured in the pictures below) I’d reached a level of delight beyond explaining.

Here’s a big thank you to all of them for making yesterday one of the best days of the life and making me turn 17 in style. This is also announcing that each and every one of you is awesome, in every sense of the word(Not as much as me, to say the truth) Thank you for making me feel so grateful, blessed and appreciated.This is also a thanks to everyone who wished me here on the blog and on my email, your wishes made my day much much more brighter.

Now, in all honesty, I, the person who always has too much to say, has no words to explain what I felt and continue to feel. This is a rare phenomena, so behold and congratulations!

In conclusion, to answer my first question, why do humans love surprises? Surprise someone you love and you’ll know inside, get surprised and you’ll realise.