Poison Pen

don't worry, she doesn't bite anymore.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

pahking my cah in the hahvahd yahd

so, i had my first long weekend off. so i FINALLY did something more than sleep in on sunday.

first i have to admit with great embarassment, that in spite of living in boston for nearly 3 years, i had never ventured north of the charles, and so have never seen all those famous universities housed there. and also i had never met up with D (notice how i have stopped using names for people just in case i become famous and turn this into a book) who is an old friend from school, now living in cambridge. so when D called last week and told me that i would nevernever get a better chance than this to do both, i jumped at it.

i drove in to d's place on saturday evening and after a quick dinner (pasta - she is still a student, after all), i went on a guided tour of cambridge's nightspots, most of which were sadly empty. apparently most of the students had gone home for the weekend, so any hopes i had of watching a preview of the 2040 elections being played out over a round of beer were cruelly dashed. that didn't stop us from taking a long walk down massachussets avenue (or mass ave as i soon learnt to call it), stopping occasionally for a refuelling stop. it was uneventful, except that we were both quite happy and insisted on singing silly hindi songs and kept collapsing in giggles. at harvard square we saw a couple of serious looking cops, so we turned all ladylike again and called a cab (definitely a good idea to not bring the car). once we got in, we went to pieces again, and the driver was very surprised. we found that he was indian too so we insisted that he sing along with us. finally he mouthed one line of 'mere sapnon ki rani' when we just died. i think he was quite terrified of us and was only too glad when he dropped us off. but i gave him a big tip to make up (arent i nice), so i guess he was happy.

on sunday, i was taken around the two big campuses. the contrast was quite stark. harvard is all elegance and positively reeks of history. mit is terribly drab looking compared to it, but if you look closely, its a nerds paradise. i did see anumber of students, all very geeky looking. i guess they are the ones who would stay back during holidays. oh, and soooo many chinese! God, these chinese women and their high grades and incredible hair! so anyway, after a historical morning and afternoon, i took a break for a cup of coffee with the terribly interesting buchu. i had mailed her that i was coming to her part of town and was she busy on the weekend. she said not at all, so it was a bloggers date. i shooed D away saying that this was a strictly-for-bloggers thing. she went off cursing all bloggers under her breath.

so buchu, a.k.a. antara, is even more interesting in real life than she is on her blog, if thats even possible. just talking to her for 5 minutes makes you feel what a complete idiot you are. she also knows everything about everything and has an opinion about all those everythings and more, especially if they're political. on top of that, shes a genuinely nice person and just loves to talk. so we two bongs had a long adda session over chai tea lattes and ginseng tea, about everything from george bush (we both hate him) to the hurricane (too shocking for words) to sania mirza (buchu likes her but i dont. this was actually quite a long argument). and, naturally we discussed blogging and bloggers too. much p.n.p.c. was made and i learnt interesting little titbits about many fellow bloggers including sci-fi authors from caclutta, long-haired poets from bangalore and former techies from san diego. also discussed earth-shattering events like the mysterious descent into porn of a chicago-based funny man, and the silence of the japanese quack and other animals.

finally antara had to run, with promises of more meetings, this time in my part of town. i called D and mollified her by taking her to dinner. there was a pretty famous indian place nearby but i have vowed to never eat indian food at a restaurant in the us, so that was out. instead we had american food, speciality being duck. yum! ducks definitely rule :))

monday was a late morning after two hectic days. we drove around the other places of interest in cambridge. had a whistle-stop tour of radcliffe. was maybe hoping to see an oliver barrett leading his lady love out into the woods, but i was disappointed. after some tea at harvard square, we grabbed a movie (the 40 year old virgin), and then i headed home to my mundane life. snaps will be posted later this week.


  • At 1:38 AM, Blogger chamique said…

    You know you've left India when you have to ask cab drivers to sing!

  • At 9:55 AM, Blogger the still dancer said…

    Long haired balding poets (what, not stand-up, ok, type-out, comic? shucks) from Bangalore. Am rather proud of my heredity, see?

  • At 1:04 PM, Blogger satchisgod said…

    Lol, your post reminds me of the Stanford-Berkeley stark disparity...Stan's like so fucking super-posh and prim, and Berk's like...total party/hippy/vela place!
    Needless to say, I llloved Berk - in fact, I was wearing this Led Zep t-shirt and which attracted quite a few drunkards and hippies with various degrees of exclaimations, yikes, swears...!

  • At 2:15 PM, Blogger Rimi said…

    japanese quack and other animals? delightful!

    all this sounds so cosy...*sigh*

  • At 2:16 PM, Blogger Rimi said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 5:28 PM, Blogger Vishnupriya said…

    chamique, thats the other difference. id probably never ask a cab driver inindia to sing. i guess we all change with our surroundings.

    and arka, ummm, i missed the heredity snark, if it was snark, that is.

    satch, ive never been to the west coast, but if i do frisco is a must-see. dying to see what leftist intellectuals look like this side of the pacific

    rimi, :D

  • At 10:52 PM, Blogger the still dancer said…

    'twas no snark, didima. Male pattern baldness is hereditary, you know? So 'tis my inheritance. Yes, some "inheritance of loss," that.

  • At 12:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    "so buchu, a.k.a. antara, is even more interesting in real life than she is on her blog, if thats even possible."


    More interesting than her BLOG? Is that possible??

  • At 4:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    anon: how could it not be possible?

  • At 6:59 AM, Blogger Mint Chutney said…

    discussed "earth-shattering events like the mysterious descent into porn of a chicago-based funny man"

    I laughed out loud (really loud) when I read that. I'm glad I wasn't the only one confused. : )

  • At 5:29 AM, Blogger Anurag said…

    I'm slightly jealous of you. Boston is my favourite city in US and I would love to live and work there. I once saw the 4th of July fireworks from the bank of Carles, and fell in love with the city. Crazy traffic, though (the only city in US where I jumped the red light deliberately -- twice).



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