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Thursday, 1 December 2016

Keeping promises to myself : Winning NaNoWriMo 2016


In the last week of October, I decided to participate in NaNoWriMo 2016 and write an entire novel of 50 K words in the month of November. It was a difficult challenge, but from a very young age, I get attracted towards challenges. The thrill of overcoming a challenge excites me.

I sketched the plot in the last week of October and embarked on a new journey of writing the book titled "Is it me you're looking for?" on 1st November. I was full of energy on the 1st week of November and managed to write 18 K words within 7 days. 




However, it was the 2nd week when things became really tough as I faced an emotional crisis and was also overburdened with tight deadlines. The pace decreased as a result. 

In the 3rd week, I had many social commitments such as friend's wedding and family functions that also made it hard to continue writing the novel along with the regular workload. 

However, it was the 4th week when I pulled up my socks and decided that, come what may, I am going to finish the novel I am working on. And on 29th November just before the clock struck midnight, I hit the 50 K mark and completed the 1st draft of my novel.

I validated my work and was awarded this beautiful certificate by NaNoWriMo.



I was overwhelmed with emotions as I received the certificate and realized that I had finally kept a promise to myself. After a long time, I gifted myself something that I will always be grateful for. This one month of discipline, hard work and not giving up had shaped me both as a writer and as a human being.

Generally, I take 4-6 months to pen down the 1st draft of a novel. For the first time, I did it in one month. This itself is a huge motivation for me. Now I can't wait to go back to the novel after taking a week break and read what I have written so that I can edit it accordingly. 


Thanks to all you lovely people who wished me all the best when I shared on my blog that I am going to attempt NaNoWriMo this year. Blogging took a back seat last month due to this, but December will definitely be full of blogging. I have so much to write and share in my most favorite space. 



Indian Bloggers

Saturday, 26 November 2016

An exotic experience with TERRA Chips

Like many people, chips are my comfort food. I can have them at any point of the day and whatever mood I am in. Whether I am happy or stressed, all I need is a packet of chips. Therefore, when I received this box of TERRA Chips last weekend, my happiness knew no bounds.


As I read “An exotic experience awaits you”, I was very excited to take a dive into the TERRA Adventures. I knew that TERRA chips are made of real vegetables and therefore, I couldn’t wait to taste them.

There were 3 bags of TERRA Chips inside the box:

-TERRA Blues
-TERRA Original
-TERRA Mediterranean


What makes TERRA Chips unique?

As I opened the first packet of TERRA Chips, I knew that I am going to have a unique experience. TERRA chips are real vegetable chips that are made from real whole vegetables such as naturally blue potato, sweet potato, yuca, parsnip, ruby dipped vegetables, batata and taro. 

Each flavor of TERRA Chips is made with a combination of a diverse range of root vegetables. They are extremely healthy as they are completely made of root vegetables.
If you are looking for healthy snacking without compromising on taste, TERRA Chips are the ideal thing for you. The delicious flavors and the vibrant colors of root vegetables make these chips a great, crunchy snack.

Terra Blues (Sea Salt)


This is the first bag of TERRA chips that I opened. The blue colored chips highlighted on the bag tantalized me. The bluish-purple colored chips are made of naturally blue potatoes. They are truly a rhapsody in blue. I loved the aroma of the chips. They tasted crunchy and had a slightly nutty flavor. The TERRA blues tasted different from normal potato chips. The crunchy taste of the chips appealed to me and I savored each one of them.

 Terra Original (Sea Salt)


Terra Original is a combination of various colored chips as it is made of taro, sweet potato, batata, parsnip, yuca and ruby dipped vegetables. As I opened the bag of Terra original, I found chips in various colors such as vibrant red, deep yellow, yellowish white, light brown, orange and white. The chips looked very inviting and they were delectably crunchy. They are perfect for healthy snacking.

Terra Mediterranean (Herbs & a hint of lemon)


Terra Mediterranean is also made of the same combination of root vegetables as Terra Original. However, instead of sea salt, herbs and a hint of lemon is used for flavor.

Product Experience

The TERRA chips looked and tasted so different from other chips that it was like taking an adventure.  I truly had an exotic experience with TERRA chips. The exotic flavor, the vibrant color and the fine texture of the chips are praiseworthy. If you like to maintain a healthy lifestyle, try TERRA chips for snacks. They are very healthy, crunchy and tasty. You can have them with your favorite beverage. You can also enjoy a bag of TERRA chips while watching your favorite movie. 


These real vegetable chips are gluten-free and are very healthy. It is the ideal choice for gourmet snacking. You can also impress your guests by preparing some food items with the chips. There are some amazing recipes listed on the Terrachipsindia.com website.

My family and I had an exotic adventure with TERRA chips. We loved experiencing the goodness and rich taste of root vegetables in the form of chips. Once you open a bag of TERRA chips, you can’t resist having them. 

So, what are you waiting for? Dive right now into an exotic adventure with TERRA chips. They are available in Amazon and BigBasket.


Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Gone With the Wind



The season of beauty 
Has gone with the wind
Leaving behind frosty thorns
Dried, dark petals
That shows no hope.
Promises and memories
Are two sisters at war
Pitted against each other
Within a blink of eyes,
Promises perish in the storm of life,
No attachment or blind ties
And look at memories
They don't leave in hurricanes and earthquakes
Even when your existence is at risk
They can never be gone with the wind.


-Purba Chakraborty
(16.11.2016)



Indian Bloggers

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Dear Zindagi, I love you!

Dear Zindagi,

First of all, I want to give you a big hug because no matter how much I have complained and whined, you have always embraced me with all my flaws. I love you!

Everyday, you give me reasons to be happy, make me feel myriad emotions and teach me something new. Yes, there are nights when I suffer so much that I start hating you and think that you are ugly, but you don’t give up on me. You again paint my face with a smile the next morning, bless me with love, plant hope in my heart and sprinkle dreams in my eyes.  

You have shown me that there can be beauty in ugliness, peace in cauldron and hope in despair, only if we have the eyes to see it. You have taught me that one can never run short of reasons to be happy. Living every moment to the fullest and making beautiful memories is the ticket to perennial happiness. 

You are the wisest teacher ever. I learnt from you that sadness is not my enemy. It is also a friend, just like happiness. Without sadness, happiness will lose all its meaning. You are really complicated and perhaps that’s why it took me more than two decades to understand you properly. 


That day, I was looking at a beautiful rainbow from the hills when it struck me that you are just like that. You are composed of several colors which make you look so beautiful. Happiness, sadness, love, fear, peace, anger and compassion are some of your colors that together make you so beautiful.

When my mother passed away, I thought you didn’t love me. When my grandmother got cancer, I thought you didn’t love me. When I was a lonely introvert in my high school days with not a single person willing to talk to me, I thought you didn’t love me. When I got betrayed, I thought you didn’t love me. When my heart got broken again and again into a million pieces, I thought you never loved me. 

Oh dear! I was so wrong. You brought wrong people in my life so that I understand who the right people are. You gave me superficial friends so that I recognize who my best friend is. You showed me how painful loneliness is so that I don’t give loneliness to anyone in return. You gave me the best father in the world who never made me feel my mother's absence. I can always find my mother in him. You gave me such a lovely grandmother who fought and survived the battle with cancer so that she can raise me up.  

Every scar that you have given me, I found a note of wisdom in it years later. Your way of loving is really unique. I have slowly started understanding your love. And yes, how can I forget the surprise gifts that you gave me in the form of miracles, be it soul companions or my calling? You have given me people with whom I could feel a direct soul connection and realize that magic exists.



Discovering that writing is my calling has brought me closer to myself. I have found a best friend in me. Writing has helped me unwrap the gift of solitude. I don't fear loneliness anymore. Now, I can clothe my emotions in beautiful words and put them on paper.

Loving deeply without fear, crying my heart out without any inhibition, pouring kindness in every act, smiling from the bottom of my heart are some of the most valuable things that I have learnt from you. But my favorite lesson is that I should always be true to myself and never lie to myself. I know I took a long time to learn this simple lesson. Do you think I am a bad student? Well, you see I am trying to improve every day.

I can feel your warm hug when the wind pampers my hair and the waves tickle my feet. I can also feel your hug in the smell of roses, the melody of songs, the aroma of home-cooked food and the magic of words.

Thank you so much for all the lessons. Thank you for being so patient with this student of yours. Thank you for all the hugs.

And also thank you for the wounds where you left behind your note of wisdom. 

#DearZindagi, I am so much in love with you!

Here’s a poem that I have written on you long back. Hope you like it.

People often yell and wail
‘Life! Why do you give pain?
They forget the euphoric moments
They lament, shout and complain.

Life never complains
It embraces both the tears and the smiles
That people throw in its bosom
It endures, teaches, enlightens.

Life is wiser than people
It tries to speak in innumerable ways;
The ones who listen to its tales
Savor every slice of it till death.


Love and Hugs, 

~Purba Chakraborty

I am writing a letter to life for the #DearZindagi activity at BlogAdda

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Dew drops on grass!



The opaline dew drops
Shimmering on the blades of grass;
The pearly tear drops
Glistening on the word-filled pages
Speaks of an affair, mystic and beautiful.
A conversation in the emptiness of night
That happily dies with the morning sun
So that it can be reborn again at night
Away from prying eyes
In the lap of starry, ethereal silence. 


-Purba Chakraborty
2.11.2016


Indian Bloggers

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

NaNoWriMo: All set for a new challenge!


I have been hearing about NaNoWriMo, which is the National Novel Writing Month since the last 4 years of my writing career. However, I couldn't motivate myself to take part in it because writing 50,000 words in a month along with managing regular workload (content writing in my case) doesn't sound easy at all. 

Moreover, there is no denying that I am so lazy, especially in the weekends. I hardly skip a weekend without catching up my friends, partying or going to a movie. So I never dared to attempt NaNoWriMo. 

However, this year, things are different. I want to challenge myself for NaNoWriMo due to plenty of reasons. First of all, I have been really bad to 'the writer in me' this year. During late August, I was so disheartened due to some reasons that I almost decided to quit writing. Even thinking of it makes me shiver now. How could I have even thought of that? Writing is like breathing to me, and even for some vulnerable minutes, I thought of giving it up. 

After that episode, I had a contemplative September when I rediscovered myself and made certain changes in my life to promote my well-being and to fuel my creativity. I made peace with the fact that writing is the number one priority in my life. It is the purpose and meaning of my life. I cannot let anything, no matter how important, take me away from it. 

I am having a wonderful, festive October with plenty of celebrations and travelling. All my close friends are Libras and therefore, October is all about birthday parties and celebrations for me. It was less work, more play. 

So now that I am all recharged with the celebrations, I have decided to commit myself to NaNoWriMo from 1st to 30th November. You can find me (Purba_Chakraborty) on the NaNoWriMo website. Please add me as a writing buddy if you are also participating in it this year. 




The tentative title of my novel is "Is it me you're looking for?" I wanted to write this book since a long time, but I have always postponed it, for some reason or the other. So, I feel that NaNoWriMo is the perfect push that I need to write this book. 


Rumi once said: "What you seek is seeking you."
The story of "Is it me you're looking for?" takes inspiration heavily from this quote. It is an emotionally intense, gripping and moving story about lost love, broken dreams and the power of miracles.

I am spending these days plotting and preparing for NaNoWriMo. I really don't remember the last time when I was so excited to start working on something new. 
Have you ever participated in NaNoWriMo? Do you have any tips for me? Please feel free to share.



Indian Bloggers

Saturday, 15 October 2016

The adventurous Everest Base Camp Trek

“In every walk with Nature, one receives more than he seeks.” ~ John Muir


Nature is the most powerful healing force. There is an amazing sense of liberation, contentment and happiness when you spend time with Nature. Trekking is one of the best outdoor activities where you can spend ample amount of time with Nature. If you are an adventurous soul, you will surely enjoy trekking.

Benefits of Trekking

Trekking can improve both your physical health and mental health. Let’s look at some of the benefits of trekking:

1. Since you need to cover large distances in trekking, it increases your cardiovascular strength. Trekking is great for keeping your heart healthy.

2. Trekking is a great physical activity that can help you shed excess fat.

3. When you are trekking, you are able to inhale fresh, clean air that helps in cleansing your lungs.

4. Trekking also enhances your muscle strength and makes your bones stronger.

5. Trekking is one of the best ways to reduce stress as it releases endorphins which makes you feel happy. Moreover, it enhances focus and helps a person to stay calm during challenging times.

Everest Base Camp Trek

Trekking to the base camp of Everest is a great adventure. Everest is the world’s highest mountain and therefore, trekking to the foot of Everest will be a breathtaking experience for any trekking enthusiast.



In 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the rocky base of Everest. Since that time, enthusiastic trekkers have been trekking to the Everest Base Camp. 40,000 people have been trekking to this iconic base camp annually.

Trekking to the Everest Base Camp Trek is not for general weekend walkers. It is a difficult trek and therefore, it demands fitness and enthusiasm.

Your journey will start from the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu. You need to take a short flight from Kathmandu to Lukla, from where your trek will begin.

The next 14 days of your life will be an unforgettable experience for you, as you will witness mesmerizing mountain scenery, learn about the cultures and traditions of the Sherpa, discover beautiful Nepalese tea-houses and follow the Dudh Khosi River. After five days, you will enter the Everest National Park and get a glimpse of the highest point of the world.


The most favorable time to go for this trek is September to December or March to May. If you love adventure, this will be the most rewarding experience of your life.

Mojhi

Mojhi is the largest online portal for adventure activities in the world. It allows its users to search and choose their type of adventure such as trekking, paragliding, rafting, scuba, snorkeling, etc. You can find complete details about any adventure that you choose to embark on. 

You can find all the details of the adventurous Everest Base Camp Trek on their website. Once you submit your details, they will send you offers from professional and verified trekking companies within twelve hours. So, are you ready to spice up your life with some adventure?

“Life is either a great adventure or nothing.” ~ Helen Keller


Note: All the pictures have been sourced from Mojhi.com


Indian Bloggers

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Memories and Celebrations of Durga Puja 2016


As I was savoring a plate of Bijoya special Bengali sweets and sulking how quickly the four days of Durga Puja flew by, I decided to blog about it. Now, that's the best thing about being a writer. We, writers, write to taste life twice, once in the moment and the other in retrospect. 

This year, the Durga Puja began on a very gloomy note for me as I had tonsillitis and fever on Panchami night (6th October). I was so upset that all my plans from 7th to 10th October will be spoiled because of the fever. But some miracle happened and I started feeling better on Shashti morning (7th October). 






I went for some pandal hoping with my family. Since it was morning, there was less crowd. As I looked into Ma Durga's eyes, I felt a blanket of peace enveloping me. I offered my prayers to the Goddess and again looked at her divine face. I felt calm, protected and happy. The feeling was synonymous with how a person feels when he is with his mother. It was a beautiful moment that I had with Her on Shashti morning




Festivals like Durga Puja and Diwali allows me to bond with my family on a deeper level. I try my best to give them as much time as possible. I had long conversations with my father and grandmother. I made them smile, we took lots of selfies and had delicious food. 



On the second day of Durga Puja, Saptami (8th October), I was invited to a close friend's apartment Puja. 



It was wonderful to see the devotion of the ladies in the apartment, all bonding together to celebrate Durga Puja. They welcomed me with open arms and allowed me to be a small part of their world. 





My friend and I had prasad there, and then we went for some Pandal hopping in the evening. The crowd was absolutely crazy, but that's what makes the Durga Puja of Kolkata truly special. People tirelessly celebrate in these 4 days, hoping from pandal to pandal. Kolkata doesn't sleep in these 4 days. Whether it is 3pm or 3am, you can find this mad crowd. 







The group of Dhakis who were playing the dhak (drum) in one of the pandals made me stop there for a few minutes. This sound of dhak totally captures the essence of Durga Puja. Looking at Ma Durga's idol and listening to the dhak has a magical effect. 





The third day of Durga Puja, Ashtami ( 9th October) started with the morning Pushpanjali. I woke up in the morning with the chants from the nearby pandal. I took a bath, wore a new saree and went to the pandal to offer my prayers to the Supreme Mother. 



Pushpanjali is an integral part of Durga Puja. It is a ritual where Anjali mantras are recited by devotees and flowers are offered to the Goddess. I cannot think of Durgashtami without Anjali. After the ritual, I felt wonderful, as if all my prayers were answered. That's the magic of faith, I guess. 



In the Ashtami evening, I went to a traditional zamindar house to see the Sandhi Puja. 

Sandhi Puja marks the passing of Ashtami into Navami. This is symbolically the time of dusk and lasts for about 48 minutes. It is believed that during this time, Devi Durga slayed the demons Chanda and Munda. 



On the fourth day of Durga Puja, Navami (10th October), I met my school friends and we had a great time. One of them is getting married in November this year and so we had lots to talk about.

I had plans of some pandal hoping in the night, but it started raining so heavily that I had to ultimately cancel the plan. 







Overall, I had a great Durga Puja with my family and friends. On the day of Vijaya Dashami, an uncanny sadness filled my heart, but there are sweets to cheer me up and beautiful memories ingrained in my heart. And of course, I am looking forward to Diwali now. 


Here's wishing all of you Subho Bijoya with a platter of Bengali sweets. 


How did you celebrate Durga Puja and Navratri? 


Indian Bloggers

Friday, 7 October 2016

I believe in magic because of my bestie!


Friendship is the most beautiful element of life because friends are those magical gifts that we give ourselves. In the journey of life, we make many friends, but there is always that one friend that stands by our side like a rock, who came in our lives not to merely embellish it, but to add more meaning to it…who came to stay and not to leave after a few days. Yes, I am taking about our besties.



I met Priyam Kapoor in class eight when I took admission in National Gems Higher Secondary School. I can clearly recollect that none of the girls were talking to me on the first day of school and how miserable I was feeling. I was sitting on the last bench quietly when I first noticed her. A cute, chubby girl with two ponytails and a beautiful smile that spreads all over the face was looking at me. She came to my desk and introduced her saying that I can tell her if I face any problem on my first day. She would be glad to help me and be my friend. I beamed and then she asked what I have brought in tiffin and whether I will share it with her.


So it was in 2003 when I met this girl who told me that I can share with her if I face any problem. And even after 13 years in 2016, whenever I hit the rock bottom, all I do is send her a message “I am feeling terrible. Can you call me?” Within a few minutes, I get her call, irrespective of whether I have sent the message at 3am in the morning or 3pm in the afternoon. She is my lifeline. I can proudly tell that she is my audience poll, phone a friend and 50:50 at the same time.


I can clearly remember how we have spent lazy evenings on her terrace in our high school days discussing about our crush and giggling to our heart’s content. When we left school, I thought that our friendship might fade slowly due to lack of time. But I was so wrong. In fact, over the years, we have started understanding each other on a deeper level. We have profound conversations now apart from those silly, giggly ones that make us literally roll on the floor laughing.


We have truly grown up together. We have nursed each other after we had our first breakup that almost seemed to make the world stand still. Over the years, we have cultivated the art of understanding each other’s silent tears.

The best thing about our friendship is that we never judge each other and there is no room for envy. Even when we do not get each other’s point of view, we are only concerned about each other’s well being. I feel happy to see her grow in life and I know she feels the same for me. She is my best cheerleader and at the same time, she also gives me a reality check from time to time to keep me grounded.


We keep having a lot of fun and quirky moments. When I had a leg fracture, she was laughing like crazy just because she also had a leg fracture in the exact same place exactly a year back. So that made her believe that we are soul sisters. We have conversations that no one can understand and we can just go on a laughing spree looking at each other.


We also have a lot of deep moments, when we are totally on the same page, able to understand each other clearly. Those moments make me believe that magic indeed exists in life. My friendship with Priyam is one big magic that I have experienced in my life.

I just heard that ZEE TV is bringing a great chat show called “Yaaron ki Baarat” that is co-powered byAmazon.in and Brooke Bond Red Label. In this fun-filled chat show, we can see some popular celebrity friendships that will go through some fun tasks and challenges. I am really excited to see this amazing chat show, “Yaaron ki Baarat”. It will surely be lots of fun. Watching celebrities take fun challenges to prove their friendship sounds great. Doesn’t it?
Do not forget to tune in to ZEE TV on 8th October at 8 pm. You can find more about the show at http://www.ozee.com/shows/yaaron-ki-baraat