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How i turn my good mornings into Gold Mornings

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If you ask me what part of the day I like the most, my instant reply to it would be morning. Mornings are special for a lot of reasons. They are the start of something new. A gentle push by the universe to achieve something you’ve always wanted. And I love that about mornings.

For me a good morning is all about having a good night’s sleep and waking up fresh. But if you ask me how I turn my good morning in a gold one, I’d have to say it begins with cleanliness and eating healthy. So if you’d like to know how I transform my good mornings into Gold Mornings, read on below:

#1: Good Personal Hygiene:

The first thing I do when I wake up is brush my teeth. Some people ignore this and drink bed tea or coffee. This is really bad. I mean how can you do that? You just slept for 7 hours straight drooling onto your pillow. How can you eat or drink something when your mouth feels like cardboard when you wake up?
That’s why I begin my day with Colgate360 Charcoal Gold toothbrush and Colgate toothpaste.
The best part about using the Colgate360 Charcoal Gold toothbrush is that it cleans more than just teeth. It cleans my teeth, tongue, cheeks and gums too. Now that’s what I call the gold standard of mouth cleaning. It’s an instant way of turning your good mornings into #Colgate360GoldMornings.

Once I’m done with brushing, I take a shower. Sometimes when I’m tired, I take long baths, other times it’s a super short one. It’s very important to take a shower every day, especially if you’re living in the city. Otherwise it just stresses you out.

#2 Having a Healthy Breakfast

In cities as most people have tons of stuff to do during the day, they tend to skip breakfast. This is not right at all. If you begin your day with a healthy breakfast of corn flakes or muesli with milk, you will feel super energized and will be able to do everything that you’ve set out for. And don’t indulge into watching TV or listening to music as most people do. Just sit with your parents or your loved ones, and have breakfast together and you’ll see how well an early morning conversation will make you feel relaxed.

So there it is. That’s how I turn my good mornings into Gold Mornings. If you too would like to have #Colgate360GoldMornings or just Gold Mornings in general, follow my methods and you’ll be feeling super awesome in no time. 

Love vs. Desire

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Finding a job can be an amazing thing. You have this sense of purpose and responsibility that you’ve never had before and as you keep doing it every day, you tend to learn new things, understand the tricks to the trade and generally fall in love with it, if you like what you do. It all feels great till you finally realize one day that the job you’re doing is eating you up from the inside. You won’t recognize the impact of these small changes, but the stress, the arguments with clients, the urge to please everyone can sometimes overwhelm you to such a level that you wouldn’t be able to see beyond your job.

I love my job. There are no two things about it. But as everyone says, love makes people blind. My love towards my work has led me away from some of the other things that have always been close to my heart.

I’ve always felt that there is a hidden travel bug inside of me; one that wants me to explore the scenic mountains of Shimla or the exquisite temples of Khajuraho. But work has always been a priority. So whenever someone asked me to join them on an expedition or an outing, my go-to answer would always be a NO; maybe next time; you know how it is.

Every time I saw pictures of old colleagues on FB riding their bikes to the world’s highest motor-able road - the Khardung Pass; or posting a hundred selfies from the beaches of Goa, I used to think 'I wish I was there’ ‘Why can’t that be me?’ Then suddenly I’d get an email asking me to work on something that was super urgent and I’d forget about it. But the travel bug inside of me wouldn’t sit still.

I would fantasize about buying a car and then just zooming off to some exotic destination. All through the drive I’d play my favorite music and sometimes go intentionally off track just so that I could find something that I’d never thought of finding before. I wouldn’t be worried about getting lost because the GPS would always be there to help me with navigation. And besides that I’ve always felt that asking people for directions is the best way to find your way. So maybe I’d just do that. Who knows? I mean I can dream anything I want, right? But as always it has remained a dream.

My heart is full of wishes and wanderlust. It’s filled with wants to see the sunrise in Kashmir and sunset in Kanyakumari. Maybe someday I’d be able to realize them all. Maybe someday my FB would be filled with hundreds of pictures that’d inspire someone to quench their thirst of wanderlust. Till then I have to wait and keep on dreaming a hundred new dreams every day.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

Image Credits: Pixabay/keenicon

How to make a decision? And exhaustive theory by a restless mind

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What is the one thing that defines a person? What is the one thing that makes people talk about you; assume things about you; praise you?

It’s the decision a person makes.

This is how it always happens, isn’t it? When we have to go to a new place and don’t know how to reach there, we almost always take the help of technology. Google Maps or a GPS system inside your car will easily provide navigation, helping you to reach the place without any hiccups. The way how we can easily find our way using this method has always fascinated me. I have always thought about how amazing it would be if we could have a GPS system that would guide us and help us navigate when we have to move through the puzzling maze of making a decision.

Fantasies aside, making a decision is difficult for a reason. We have to stick by them because they define who we are. Choosing a salad over fried chicken tell us we value our health more than the taste.  Choosing to tell the truth over lying speaks about how much we value honesty. The impact of decisions can be so huge that it can prove to be detrimental to our character if we take a wrong one.
So as per the headline, how do you make a decision? How do you decide what to do? There are only 2 ways and these are so simple that you may stop reading this article when you find out about them.

Ready? Ok. Here they are:

1. Think a lot
2. Don’t think at all

So there it is. It’s that simple. But here’s the thing, you can’t follow only one of them throughout your life. You have to keep switching between the two depending upon the situation and some times, no matter which path you take, you still end up feeling like you’ve made the wrong choice. It’s very easy at these times to blame yourself. And when you blame yourself, you tend to feel the massive weight of what you went ahead with and lose focus on what should be done.

So the bottom line is that decisions are a part of one’s life. There is no getting out of making them; there’s no running away from them and there’s certainly no navigation system that will carefully help you navigate through the tough turns that pop up in life. Instead what you can do is own your decision. If you took the wrong one, own up to your mistake and take the flak. If you feel like you’ve made the right one then stand up for it. That’s how you make a decision, by sticking to it.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

How to make Fantastico Curd Sambhar?

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Have you ever loved a dish so much that you go to inexplicable lengths to learn the recipe and make it for yourself and taste it? Have you ever craved for something for many days and one fine day prepared it and treated yourself to the mouth-watering aromas and taste of that heavenly dish? The Curds Sambhar does that to me. It puts me in a food coma and might be the only thing which I am ready to eat every day. I learnt this from a friend and added a little twist to it which in my opinion makes it a lot better. Or you can say makes it a fantastico Curd Sambhar.

The recipe I’m suggesting will be enough for two people. I prepare it for two people and finish it off all by myself. That's how tasty it is. I sometimes lick the tawa so clean that I can just put it back on the shelf. I’m joking (Or not :P). Prepare this for yourself and let me know how you find it.

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon oil.

1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds

1/2 tablespoon ginger garlic paste. (Secret ingredient #1)

1 big onion or 2 small onions finely chopped.

2 Chillies split lengthwise. (More if you like it spicy)

1/2 teaspoon of MDH Kitchen King Masala (Secret ingredient #2)

1/4 litre curd

1/4 cup Water

Salt to taste

Preparation:

1) Add the oil to the tawa.

2) Add the mustard seeds and chillies and fry it for a bit so that all the spiciness of the chillies is released to the oil.

3) Add the onions, salt and ginger garlic paste and fry till the raw smell of ginger and garlic goes away.

(Onions frying has one of the best smells, it makes my mouth water just thinking about it)

4) Add the Kitchen King Masala and fry it with the onions for a while.

5) Let this cool for a few minutes and add a little bit of water. You can slowly mix in the curds.
It’s important to remember not to mix the curds while the tawa is on the stove or while the onion tadka is too hot. If curd is added to the hot mixture it splits and turns into something very inedible looking. Let everything cool down for a while and then mix in the curds. I usually prefer curds which have gone a bit sour as this gives a very tangy taste to the whole thing.

This sambhar tastes best with rice or you can mix in a little bit of more water and drink it like chaas. It tastes awesome both ways. If you like to make it spicier, add more chillies and increase the quantity of Kitchen King masala.

Now I am off to make some Fantatstico Curd Sambhar and have it with some rice. I am drooling already.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

My fantastico love for food

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It is irritating how much people underestimate my love for food.

I am a person who plans out his breakfast before I go to sleep. Yes, breakfast. I decide what to order based on the dinner I have just had. It is a great responsibility to choose the right breakfast as it is the most important meal of the day or so I say to myself repeatedly as I make a note of what variety of Masala Dosa to order again for breakfast the next day.

Lunch is a whole different story altogether. There are so many options out there these days that planning lunch takes up to 30 minutes after I’ve had the last piece of Masala Dosa for breakfast. I keep switching between Roti Curry, Chapati or just some rice item like Pulav, Biryani, Ghee Rice or Bisebele Bhath. The options are endless. Should I just choose a rice item? Can I only have a Vada? Maybe I can have Chapati and a Vada. You see how confusing it is?

I sometimes wish I had a bhukkad friend like myself.  Then I could order a rice item and Chapati and split it between the both of us. You feel me? Maybe I can have a full meal. There is usually some Chapati and rice with them. I decide on having a full meal and order the same old Roti Curry again. Plain rice? Pfft. No way am I eating that.

I get some work done after this. I get paid to work and not to think about food all the time. I then continue working while munching on some biscuits and chips.

Dinner is one majestic affair where my wife and I decide on the item to be cooked. We spend some time looking up recipes and then grow immediately tired of all the searching and jotting down. We then finally end up ordering food from outside or on a lucky day we cook together and make a delicious dish which we’ll have for at least 2 days that week. We are still getting used to cooking for two. We usually end up cooking it for 4 people.

Weekends, oh how I wait for weekends. Read and eat and sleep. That’s my dream cycle; maybe play some video games too along with watching a few sitcoms and movies. Mainly I look forward to going out for dinner. Should we go out for Thai cuisine or maybe try out the new Punjabi Dhaba style restaurant that opened just around the corner. Speaking of corners, maybe I should take my wife to that peppy new ice cream place, which just opened near our house. Ummm! I cannot wait to savor the deliciousness on offer there.

As you can see, there are so many difficult choices to make. I am happy today though as I am trying out a new place where there is Biryani in the meal along with plain rice. Yesss!! I hope my fantastico love of food never dies. 

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

Image Credits: Wikipedia/Wikimedia

You’re My Everything

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You know how there is a book which you keep reading again and again but you never get bored of it, ever? You want to take it everywhere you go, not to read, but just to have the comfort of having your favorite book with you.
You are that book to me.

You know how when a dish is so very tasty and you just can't stop eating it and you don't want to share it or waste it?! You want it all just for yourself so you just save it to relish it later.
You are that dish to me.

You know how sometimes you sleep for 5 minutes and wake up fully refreshed and with a plan ready to take on the world.
You are that 5 minutes of sleep to me.

You know that fantastico movie which makes you laugh endlessly, but then also make your feel so good inside when one of those romantic moments pops up on the screen and it takes you to a different world altogether where you feel all your dreams will come true and it becomes your all time favorite and you just can’t stop talking about with everyone that you meet or see.
You are that fantastico movie to me.

You know those pair of jeans which fit perfectly and match all your shirts. You take it everywhere because it looks good for any occasion and you just love it so much and would hate to lose it.
You are that pair of jeans to me.

You know those stylish pens which you buy on a whim and then you fall in love with it the first time you use it because it glides on the paper so good and the ink is this beautiful black and you want to use it but don't want to dry it up and you want to treasure it for the rest of your life because you are sure you won't get another pen like this one ever again.
You are that pen to me.

You know one of those songs that make you feel good every time you hear it and you just can’t stop listening to it and a thought pops up in your head that this is what music is supposed to be and what it should be like.
You are that song to me.

You know one of those beautiful days that you just wake up and feel peppy, happy and all set to win the world and you feel no one can ever stop you no matter what happens throughout that day.
You are that beautiful day to me.


Add up all these little moments of happiness derived from all these little things and the happiness I feel is unlike anything I’ve ever felt before. And only you are the reason for that. 

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

The impact of negative thoughts

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What do we do when we are feeling very low? We try to find inspiration and motivation from people who have achieved greatness in life. We look up to those who have succeeded in-spite of difficult circumstances around them. We look at the ones who’ve created an impact on several lives.
We see these people and then try to reassure ourselves that everything is going to be alright by updating our status to positive sayings from famous people and writing blog posts about how everything is going to be okay.

I am 28 years old. By now I have had a lot of breakdowns. Every time this happens I want to give up everything and run away. I want to go to a place where I can just read novels and eat pizza and ice cream all day, every day. During these breakdowns, I used to wallow in self-pity and self-sympathy and cry myself to sleep for a few days. And just like that one morning, I used to wake up and snap out of this whole self-pity thing. I used to take charge of the situation, read a little motivating & inspirational stuff and come out of this blackness into the bright light and again everything used to be colorful and fun and nice until the next breakdown. That was how it was, every time.

With experience and wisdom, I started questioning all these motivational and inspirational sayings. One time I found a saying which said "Do what makes you happy" and I started thinking maybe I am in the wrong profession; maybe this is not what I want to be and I should do something which makes me happy.

I would dream about a job where just reading novels all day would get me paid. I would totally rock at that job. While in this search for what makes me happy, I stumbled upon another quote "I don't think you should just do what makes you happy. Do what makes you great. Do what's hard and uncomfortable and scary and hard but pays off in the long run." After reading this, I thought, I shouldn’t just do what makes me happy. I should do something bold and brave even though I wouldn’t like it sometimes.

Thoughts like these make you question everything you have ever believed in. You suddenly remember that saying which you really took to heart about how "If it is supposed to happen, it will happen" and think what if it was supposed to happen but I didn't make it happen; what if I had tried harder and made it happen. And with this thought comes a flood of regrets, a night of crying and a blizzard of what-ifs. Navigating through this minefield of negative thoughts drowns your energy. It messes you up. You break down again.

So, I made my own quote, which I say to myself all the time "Papple"*in little minion voice with a big toothy smile* and in addition to that, I keep telling to myself "It will be alright. You will pull through. I trust you."

In the end, it’s not about finding the right motivator to follow. It is about being your own motivator. You have to write down about all your breakdowns to learn how you got back up from them.  You have to never quit on life. You have to tell yourself that how you will never quit. How you will never give power to negative thoughts and let them impact your decisions. Because the truth is, you are the only one who knows you best. And that means when you breakdown, you have to be strong enough to pick yourself back up and live life that’ll make you happy. 

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

Peppy Paneer Pizza

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So here's the story of how the peppy paneer pizza from 'a pizza place' became her all-time favorite pizza.

Her first date was in 'a pizza place' where they ordered a medium "Veg Extravaganza" pizza. They did not talk much except tell in between bites that they have had better pizzas before and how they should never come to 'this pizza place' because the pizza was not that great. The way they were behaving looked like a crappy movie scene staged with really bad actors. They tried to string words together but the sentences....they all just failed to make sense altogether.

Their next date was also at the 'same pizza place'. It was raining heavily and they were soaked to their skin and 'that pizza place' was the only decent eatery open and the smell of hot pizza, whenever the door opened, was overwhelming and anything hot seemed immensely appetizing at that point. So, '5 peppers' sounded spicy enough to jog their whole body into some sort of action and semblance, so that was what was ordered. Another round of have-had-better-pizza talk followed.

The third date was a crappy Bollywood movie, but they kissed, so it was special in some way.
After that, everyone lost count.

But it was on a Saturday - an amazing magical Saturday - and it was summer when they were at 'that same pizza place' again.

There was only one table available and it was right below the AC. There they were sitting oblivious to the fact that they were going to love the pizza they had just ordered; that they will be spending countless moments sitting there and the AC will be the only witness when they slowly fall in love with each other.

This was the first time they had ordered Peppy Paneer pizza, a small one with just four slices. But one bite into the first slice and they knew that they were going to be coming back here again. 

After finishing it, he suggested they order another one, a large one this time. With belly already half full, she asked "Are you crazy? You know how large the pizza will be? We will not be able to finish it" To which he said "I can. You wanna bet ?" Then lo and behold, he went on to devour 6 of the 8 slices. She herself managed to eat 2 slices and gave up on the way to her third and just sat there watching him eat and eat. When he took the first bite from the 6th slice she had bitten into was when she blurted out something she was supposed to just say to herself "You are crazy. I love you." She then went onto blush a color of red that was deeper than the color of the red pepper on the pizza. She couldn't believe that she had just said it out loud. Not missing a beat, he replied without hesitation "I love you too" and went on to finish the last slice of the pizza with a huge smile.

He finally said, "We should come here more often. I liked 'this pizza and this place' but most of all I like being here only when I'm with you."

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

High impact people

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Yes, "people". Do you know how sometimes a car comes in contact with another car and due to this impact there is a dent or a scratch and the car is never the same again? Similarly, imagine yourself coming in contact with a high impact person. You won't have any physical dent or a scratch but once you come in contact with these kind of people you know you will never be the same again. The difference between you and the car is that a car can be fixed while the impact caused by these people cannot.

Let me tell you about one such high impact person. Let's call this person Z (I always liked the letter Z. Do you pronounce it as “zee” as Americans do or “zed” as the rest of the world does. All this confusion around one letter.) This 'Z' is always in a cheerful mood. Happy, peppy, positive, cheerful and loud.
OMG! So loud. 
Just being around this person sometimes makes you happy, and sometimes makes you want to punch them in their face. This Z person even has a blog, where they write about all the happy things happening in their life. Their Instagram and Facebook are filled with photos of their fun-filled adventures, their treks, campfires, friends and selfies; lots and lots of selfies. All this happiness of theirs clouds up your mind and you keep thinking, 'Why can't I be this happy, cheerful, positive and brimming-with-energy person?' You start thinking and then you start crying and wishing you were them, not like them mind you, but just where you were in their place. And one fine day, they just stop or you do or everything does and in that one moment you look into their old photos on Instagram and Facebook and you see the barely hidden pain.

You read their old blog posts and this time, you read between the lines. You read the post where they told everyone how much in love they are with this one person but as you read through there's never a mention of this lover again in any of the other posts till date. You recall old conversations with them and hear the call for help you never understood at the time. Above all, you see how much they are falling apart just like you and are trying to hold everything together and be happy. They try to be as positive, happy and cheerful as they can be and while making this attempt, they end up making a lot of other people happy.

For everyone's sake, for once in their life, I hope they meet a person like Z and have this moment of realization that you don't need a lot to be happy because all you need to be happy is to just be.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

The best way to listen to music

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The headline makes it pretty clear about what this blog post is all about. Yes, I’m about to drop some knowledge on the best ways to listen to music and the answers will surprise you.

Nobody can deny listening to music. Whether you like old time Rafi songs, or the latest Honey Singh Raps, everyone has their own taste in music and everyone has their own way of listening to them. Whether you use earphones so that you can be the only one to enjoy the bliss music brings with it or you are blasting songs through your 5000W speakers till the neighbors call the cops, the way we listen to music sometimes defines the way we are. So without further ado, lets jump right into the answers to the world’s most important question ‘What’s the best way to listen to music?’

Earphones/Headphones

Earphones come at the top of the list for a reason. They create a perfect cocoon of bliss and entertainment around you. When you’re listening to music with your earphones on, there’s no past or future, you just belong to the moment. Even if your mom is yelling, or your boss is calling you to do some important work, earphones make the painful world of reality go away. You can sleep, run, cook, write and do a hundred different things when music is on and there’s no one to disturb you. Those comfy earmuffs on your head become your best friend. But don’t tell that to your girlfriend, because then she’ll think you’re just weird. Believe me! I say that from experience!

Home Theater System

Home Theater System is like having a super power in your hands. You can make the utensils in your kitchen fall down. You’ll realize the exact level of volume your mother’s screams can go up to. You can unite the entire neighborhood with a single objective of how to make you stop.
The way those speakers can make yours and your grandpa’s heart thunder at more than 100 beats per minute will redefine the meaning of being alive.  Listening to music on a home theater system is the way god intended music to be listened. You take that from me. I say that from experience.

Inside A Car

The best way of bringing people together and starting a surprise Antakshari is when you switch on a song in the car. No matter whether you’re driving a rental or your own, music can bring people together in a car within seconds. Playing music in a car is like creating your own world full of happiness, delight and absolute awesomeness. People on the road, especially the cop standing at the signal might hate you for it, but the joy of listening to music on high volume in a car is just too tempting to resist. Personally, playing music inside a car is my favorite way of listening to music. And as always, I say that from experience.

So how about you guys? Do you feel the same or different? Share your comments down below and let me know how you like to listen to your favorite music.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

The magic of music

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When I think about what makes living life truly awesome, there are only a handful of things that make the list. Of course there are the essential family and friends, but if you sit down and give a thought, you’ll find that things that make you happy can be as simple as eating your favorite food, glancing out of a car window or as it is in my case, it can be simply listening to music.

I can’t remember when I heard my first song, but what I do remember is the sense of peace it brought me. There’s something about music that has always made me feel connected to the soul of the universe. I wander into a different world altogether; one that is filled with a hundreds of emotions, feelings, thoughts and ideas. It’s like music can open doors that I never really knew existed. And I’m always awed by the raw power of music on how it can move people.

I’ve heard fantastic stories about how music has a way of transforming people. I’ve heard of a father who had abandoned his children who came back to them after almost 30 years. Why? His answer was that he heard a song which he used to sing to his children while putting them to sleep. I’ve heard about a girl who was blind from birth sing a song in such a soulful way that moved a veteran artist so much that he became her personal trainer.  

Music is immensely powerful, but what I like most about music is the way it can heal people. Anyone who has had his heart broken will admit to listening to songs to make him feel better. Anyone who has felt down or depressed or has just fallen sick will feel buoyant and happy as soon as his favorite song is turned on. That’s how amazing music is. It can connect people. It can spark conversations. It can make 2 complete strangers fall head over heels in love.

The absolute fantastic thing about music is, you can’t touch it, you can’t hold it in your hands, yet it can grab hold of you and take you to places you’ve never imagined before. It can make you realize things about yourself that’ll sometimes even surprise you.

Music is not bound by anything. It transcends language; it transcends beliefs. I’ve seen people listening and enjoying music of a language they barely knew a word of. And that might seem like a small thing, but honestly, just give it a thought, and you’ll understand how amazing that is.

Music has a very special meaning in my life. It has helped me realize my potential. It has helped me express my feelings when i otherwise just couldn’t.  It has been my companion when I’ve been lonely on rainy nights. It’s a part of me and I just can’t imagine my life without it.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

Image Credits: Wikipedia/Wikimedia