Thursday, August 30, 2012

Quotes from "Rules get broken"

Well, this is what I wanted from my beloved life partner:


Is this line a sign??



Half way through the novel written by John Herbert. Good lines always catches my eye😜.

Couldn't put the book down. Totally surprised when I found out that the book depicts a true story. I wondered why author used his own name for the main character and now, I know - why?

Friday, August 17, 2012

Two Halves of a Heart

Hey look, what caught my attention from the book "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close":

It is really nice to know that a guy too can feel this way about someone. So it is not totally ridiculous if I give importance to my ten hour exchange on June 7th with Lufthansa Steward on flight LH441

Wish me and Steward feel the same for each other. Like me, hope he is also waiting for that day to come when we can see each other again and have the triple times of what we felt for each other on that day. I really like to be in love with someone and trust someone blindly........just deeply get involved with that person and in return, he too should love me unconditionally. Is this kind of wish making me to harbor feelings for Steward or do I really care for him? But each passing day, my longing for him is growing stronger. Hope he won't break my heart by turning up something else!!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Is Tiger Mom inside me?

I'm so in love with Amy Chua, the author of "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mom". Frankly, some of her discipline, I felt very extreme but it is up to her. But as a mother, I was awed by her energy - how did she manage work stress, working hours, picking up kids, making them practice along with day to day, household work. In between, she even tries to train her dog. Was she on some drugs?

So many times, I experienced chest pains by yelling, screaming at top of my lungs to explain my daughter of why she had to play countless times to play a music piece perfectly. After chest pain episodes, nowadays, I left her on her own. And of course, her piano practical test results fell apart. But what can I do? She won't listen, argues, runs away, yells...You can take a horse to a pond to make it drink but you can't force it on the horse. In the same way, I guided and explained her the importance and even warned her the repercussions of ignoring my preaching and even made her visualize by telling her a story of beautiful life will be when one day,  she becomes a professional pianist and everybody wanted her to play at various prestigious events  but I don't have patience/competitive nature like Amy Chua. I myself questioned many times of why all these headache, why to force her, why can't she enjoy her childhood life, why these competition/stress at this young age.....

Only one thing, I was disappointed by the book when I did not find the answer to how Amy Chua made her kids to focus on Academics when they were spending five to ten hours on music. Recently her first daughter got into Harvard, how did that happen, when her focus was entirely on piano. This is question, I always whenever I force my kids to practice piano as my goal is not making them professional pianists but a side skill which they need to have to enrich their life.

Well, here are few snippets from the book along with my thoughts:
Nowadays, I'm facing the same issue. Even though, I protected kids from watching Disney teen oriented serials, my
daughter learned American way of stressing on wrong words like "Now" after every sentence along
with mimicking and rolling eyes by reading books and that too her age level. Need to be cautious of what kind of books, kids are reading as books of every kind is available and some authors' without any thought process, write fictional books emphasizing on hatefulness of a kid on mother's boyfriend and disrespecting mother for her wrong choices. Why do seven year-old need to know that crap?
This is a very important lesson!! I need to preach my kids and myself of how not to make excuses
Yes, I still remember the episode, I personally experienced the unfairness at kids' school.
Well, I don't praise too much nor criticize excessively but, right in the middle.
I'm so confused with books contradicting each other's advice - give them hug and praise them
and some say - too much praising will make them dependent on positive enforcement
and once they don't get, the kid might put himself down by thinking that he is not up to the par.
But I do stress on my kids to work hard and especially, when I see what they are capable of.

This is were I'm not that lucky with respect to husband :(

And oh yes, I enforce this - staying together as a family and be there for each other!

I'm facing the same problem and she hits right on with her observation.

This is so true!! After reading her book, I was like yes, yes, Indian parents do this, do that....

Important tidbits, I need to know as my kids are learning piano from five years.
I don't know about Chinese/Indian but oh God, I'm witnessing this kind of mentality in my in-laws.
My mom doesn't believe and I can guarantee that not many Indian moms believe that their kids owe them something.
As far as I know, they did everything with unconditional love.

Yes, this is a needed lesson for my kids. When I enforce on them, they won't listen
but now they know, why a Chinese kid always gets ahead of them in competitions and why they play piano so well...
When I kids participate in competitions, I tried to stress just like her on notes, articulation and technique. And yes, I had my battles with my daughter - yelling, screaming and trying to explain of why they have to perfect.
Some of the American piano teachers won't give importance to articulation by saying that it is just a show off/drama
but for me, all those three important for a song to be played exactly like the way it was composed.

No one ever told me the importance of Suzuki. Every piano teacher, I came across criticized
but I was always impressed by kids who can play any song by just listening to the tune. 

Never before I appreciated violin until I read this!!

I agree with Chinese parenting. Some of the things like swimming, music, soccer, skating, I introduced to my son at earlier age. I bet if I did now at age ten, his shyness would have stopped him from learning/experiencing.
The other day, I told to my son - you being born here will be equivalent to me born in India, if he won't enroll in swimming and compete.
Sun Yang, a Chinese swimmer left China and moved to Australia to get trained and compete in Olympics. Swimming records have been shattered left and right by USA. Being here, kids need to use these facilities if they enjoy competing.  

This is how my mom feels!! I too believe that kids don't owe anything to parents.  How parents take care of kids with love, in the same way, kids should feel of taking care of parents, if at all is needed not by force. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Why my kids won't go to Harvard?

As parents, you can dream about having a great life for kids like going to Harvard or being an Olympic champion or president of US or scientist or NASA engineer or a good/bright/useful citizen. But for this to accomplish, a kid need to be raised in a good environment with superb parents in every way where a kid can look no further than his/her own parent for a role model.

I cannot provide such an environment because me and my husband have different priorities in our lives. My husband's priority is just to please his parents irrespective of his own family welfare. And mine is too contradict, oppose every meaningless wish of his parents who are filled with false pride and bad ego. I wholeheartedly DESPISE them. They are the worst ever. They use goodness/madness of his son for their own false pride. And he has no problem to surrender to his parents venom or  humiliate his wife or even ready for domestic violence or even misuse his fatherhood by being mean to his own kids , just to please his parents, for just to make them happy and be in good terms with them.

His mom from the time she came to visit US, slowly and mind you "lovingly with sweetness and caring words", started poisoning him by talking about "when will you polish the fridge? or "Give the polish so that I can shine and give the needed glow to make the stove look like as if it is new" or "Give me the commode cleaner" or by saying  "Beautiful house need to maintained by taking care and cleaning everyday" or "Ahh..something pricked my foot" or "Give the duster to kids on weekends and make them clean, teach them how to keep their toys in its place and take care of the toys in such a way that even after years still can be played by the future generation" or "Why are pots and pans so dirty?" or "Oh why is this pan like this?" or "The other day, I saw a cooker in Indian grocery store, so you can buy one and don't have to wait for India trip to buy new one." or "I prefer daily cooking, meals should be served, right from the stove, the taste of it is so fulfilling and delicious instead of one day old food" or "Oooh check my Indian donut(Idli), it is so soft and round, come and taste it, just melts in your mouth" or "I don't use ready-made cooking powders(masalas) while I cook" or you should take care of our health by eating vegetables for every serve".......on and on like as if we were dying with untidiness and unhealthy food and indiscipline/lazy kids. And so looking forward for her free unwanted guidance that she popped here to preach her ever conscious son.

What do usually sons say? Don't worry mom, everything is taken care of, you don't have to worry. But nah, he listens and listens like Buddha and develops animosity towards me like nothing good is happening, nothing is perfect in his life.

The other day, when the devil(Husband's mom) called my daughter, she did not go but responded by saying "what" as she was busy with her science homework. Later when my husband came, the devil started showing attitude and started complaining and preaching about how to raise kids. Some other day, when we returned from cycling, my daughter missed some part of Olympics and was eager to catch-up with the events but my FIL asked, "how was cycling ?" but she did not respond as she stormed into the room, running and yelling about what happened in her absence. The person who asked the question did not get upset but the devil's false pride got hurt and started again lecturing about respect to elders and talked about how teaching piano is not as important as teaching manners. Mr.Hubby couldn't say to the devil, "Hey mom, she is just curious about the Olympic games and did not hear dad's soft voice so excuse her." Do you think he will say that? Not a chance. Switched off the TV and told my daughter to first answer the question and when she asked. Made her wait some more time til she asked in a proper way. All these kind of activities he can do with her because she is young and she is his daughter so he can easily misuse the power of a father.

My question to my husband is if you were so adamant about discipline and respect, why don't you teach everyday irrespective of your parents existence instead of taking my name as I'm the one without a choice been designated as a bad cop.

On Saturday, I made breakfast for everybody. He was okay - ate well and was relaxing on the sofa. Suddenly due to guiltiness after devil's Friday night secret venomous preaching about cleanliness or whatever, started mopping the house and then yelled at my son to clean the dust and polish the formal dining. I interfered by saying, "he won't do now, he already took shower. And tomorrow before shower, he will do the cleaning work." That's it, he lifted hand on me and threatened my son to hit with a broom if he won't right now clean up. My son was like "mommy, mommy, help me, help me" and here he was with total anger trying to harm me. I yelled at kids to call cops if he ever lifts hand on me. His anger subsided. I locked myself in the master bedroom, I cried and cried.

Questioned myself many times of why I should be in this marriage. First of all, I'm not happy to live with him and on top of that, insulting me and my kids for some silly thing to just to make the devil happy. As a couple, we really don't have any issues other than his parents and his unconditional love to his devilish parents. We both watch movies/TV shows/sports together, we discuss on various topics, once in a while, we dine in fabulous restaurants, travel to places, take care of kids well, give priority to kids needs. Even though, from the beginning of marriage, the devil issue created rifts between him and my parents and siblings, I kept those issues aside and was leading my marriage life even though the "true love" which I envisioned from the youth age was in peril/nonexistent.

I don't want to live single life. I'm scared to live that life as I don't know many things from health insurance to car maintenance to many many things. Even if I find a job, taking care of kids single-handedly without anybody's help is unthinkable for me. And then leading life, day after day without a partner is unimaginable. I wish Steward comes into my life....fulfills every inner desire and peels away every pain of my wounded soul, but each passing day, echos his existence as a myth. 

What do you see, when you look at this guy?
All you can see is his total involvement with this child
like taking great pleasure in communicating with her and
showing off  by talking about whatever amazing thing is there inside that
envelope. This guy totally looks like my steward, but this photo
might have been taken in 2010 but when I met steward, he did
not have curly hair or spectacles,
but this guy has same smile, same caring, bright eyes.
I really really want steward to look at me and make
me feel, once again that I'm precious!!!
I want to be happy and feel alive!!
This is the same gaze which I talked so much in my previous posts.
 After seeing this picture, I'm confused!!
Are they trained to present themselves like that
or my steward was special and his feelings for me was real, at least for that day??
I want to be that girl in the above picture.
Thoughts swirled in my head about my cousin's suicide. If you remember, in that post, I mentioned about if at all anybody thinking about suicide should ask his/her surrounding people of what they think about him/her before going forward with the attempt. But now, when suicide thoughts surfaced in my head, I thought why do I care about what others think good about me as it won't solve my issues, won't change my scenario. So what's the use? Well, don't worry, I won't attempt such a thing as you need to be courageous to pull such an act even though people say, it is a cowards act and of course, I have kids and their responsibility. I can't jeopardize their life in the name of being selfish and the devil's existence.

After all this drama of locking up myself, my kids knocked and knocked and even tried to open with a hair pin to unlock the door. My son got the idea of hairpin after reading the book "The invention of Hugo Cabret" . With the help of my husband, they opened the door. Right away, my kids insisted us to eat. Later, I came to know that they were worried that if we won't eat for longer time, we may die. This knowledge my son got after reading somewhere about an Indian dying after fasting for 135 days.

Later, my husband spent whole time with me saying "sorry, won't happen again." My son asked him, "you preach us about not lifting hand on adults, so how come you did it." He said, "it just happened. I was not thinking." My son said, "How can you not think of what you're doing?"

The whole time, I did not even wanted to see his face but he did not move even though I insisted him to go away. It was just shameful. Thoughts wandered in my head of why I hesitate in making decisions like why I did not leave him when he hit me on my birthday for tearing up his parents birthday card for me and during that time, I was not even a parent or why I did not start working from the get-go to achieve financial independence or why I did not go and meet steward? Until compelled, I won't make decisions. Somewhere I read once - we think  "fear" is the one, makes us to stop attempting new things, forces us to be in the present state, won't let us move forward, but actually it is "comfort". The work I have at home of taking care of kids, their studies, their extra curricular activities and with that if I go for work - cooking, kids, grocery shopping, work related studies, will put me under lot of stress and why do I've to work so hard. Even if I have financial independence, I don't have luxury to invite my parents to USA as there is no guarantee of my husband treating them with respect.

Back to that day's details: My husband pleaded countless times to forgive him but the problem is this is nothing new. The problems created by the devil won't go away and he has no mouth to stop her unnecessary advises.

I told him that I analyzed the whole situation and I don't expect you to believe but here is the thing like how BBC comedian Paul Merton has problems with heights and how the psychiatrist tried to hypnotize to trace back his childhood to trace the fear, he too need to go to a psychiatrist to analyze of why he can't say "no" to his parents, what makes him quiver? I told him of how he misbehaves badly with whoever is in his mom's hate list. I told him to not go my talk but check on his history about on whomever she cried and complained, you took care of the situation and made them pay and cry with your unimaginable shameless acts and in return made your mom happy and satisfied even though you got a bad name. I told him that I used to think of his misbehavior with me/my parents/my siblings, is due to "we"all, being outsiders(no blood relationship) but when he tried to make his daughter cry unnecessarily by pulling off remote or preaching/punishing her for operating the remote, just to satisfy his mother based on her instructions, has proved that it is not just "me being an outsider" but anybody in your mom's hate list.

The beauty of my husband is he listens and listens without raising any objection and the communicator falls time and time thinking that he is listening... he is following but nah, total time waste. I told him that at least he should try to cut her off(not to indulge), if not disobey, whenever she complains about trivial things, just to create animosity to rip the family apart and to make herself  happy for inflicting pain into others.

He said, "I really need you in my life. I am sorry for what I did. Yes, I should try to cut the topic off whenever such discussion happens"

Do you think, I'll believe in his talk and fall for it? Nah, dogs' tail never becomes straight, for how many ever times you try, it rolls back to its original way. It is same with him too.

When he went to drop off his parents in his sister's place, I asked him what did they say and he says "nothing". Then, I said, how is it possible for someone, not to say anything when they heard arguments coming from the next door. Then he said, "they just said - try to be happy". And he started saying, " that they never interfered in our business and never will interfere in future."

Isn't that wonderful to hear -" that they never interfered in our business and never will interfere in future . ". Really??? Why did he lose temper? By listening to whom? Was that not interference?

I say "GOD, PLEASE SAVE ME AND MY KIDS", cause I can't cure my husband.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Back in the Air - Continued (Metropolitan, Broadway...)

Nudity, nudity at NYC's Metropolitan Museum of Art. This is a place for art lovers. Even though, some of the paintings are way back from fourteenth century, you can never guess by looking at the painting. So well preserved, shining as if it is new. Just unbelievable. But why so much nudity? During those times, people use to pose and the painter used to take hours to paint. So did women pose naked, showing off their breasts to the painter until he gets it done? Of course, some were imaginative painting but oh boy, painters loved nudity, that too female nudity - loved the curves. No doubt, people used to have lot of sex during those times, I guess. As an amateur painter, I know how difficult it is get the right flesh tone. More than anything you really appreciate the patience of the painter.

Nudity, nudity at NYC's Metropolitan Museum of Art

Venus and Adonis by Peter Paul Rubens

Venus, assisted by Cupid, vainly tries to restrain her mortal lover Adonis from setting off for the hunt, knowing that he will be killed by a wild boar.

Venus and Cupid by Lorenzo Lotto

Lotto was fascinated with emblematic devices. The shell above Venus's head and the rose petals on her lap are conventional attributes of the goddess. The ivy is symbolic of conjugal fidelity while the myrtle wreath and brazier suspended from it are accoutrements of the marriage chamber. Venus wears the earring and diadem of a sixteenth-century bride. Cupid's action, an augury of fertility, confers a mood of light-hearted wit on this most popular Venetian subject.

Nymphs and Satyr by William Bouguereau
Critic's comments: "[They are] very pretty, slim and elegant like high-life Parisian women…I would gladly say that they are too pretty. They have clearly just walked out of the beauty parlor, and the satin quality of their skin could only have been obtained by a long series of baths in almond milk."

Woman with a parrot by Gustave Courbet
His first attempt, in 1864, was rejected on the grounds of indecency; however two years later, his "Woman with a Parrot" was accepted for the Salon of 1866.  Jules-Antoine Castagnary, Courbet's great defender, however, praised the artist for representing a "woman of our time."

I love the way they are so involved in each other!!

Cupid & Psyche by Canova



                                                                        Soap Bubbles by Thomas Couture

 the bubbles symbolize the transience of life, while the wilting laurel wreath on the wall suggests the fleeting nature of praise and honors. The word "immortalité," inscribed on the paper inserted in the framed mirror, reinforces the painting's allegorical content.
My favorite!!

At the Lapin Agile - Pablo Picasso
Picasso depicts himself dressed as a Harlequin. He is accompanied by his recent lover Germaine Pichot. Previously, she had been the fatal obsession of Picasso's great friend Casagemas, who committed suicide in 1901. 

Ugolino and his sons" by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux 


 There was so much to see, but couldn't manage in half a day as we already walked a lot, not only in the museum but to reach museum from subway station without knowing the distance and that too on a hot and humid day.

With subway experience, what we understood is it is worth taking taxi which will drop you right where you want whereas subway usually will never be close to the intended location. Only next day, we came to know that if we take a taxi from Times Square to Central Park's bike rental area which is closer to Museum, taxi costs ten bucks whereas subway for four people costs same ten bucks with additional walking.

So we took taxi to head to Broadway for matinee show "Phantom of the Opera".But before that we grabbed a quick slice at Pizza Italia. Even though, we liked the slices, we couldn't enjoy as we were worried about not reaching on time for the Broadway show. But luckily, somehow managed and enjoyed the show. The planning for visiting the museum and watching the show was so good that when we came out of the show, we skipped most part of the hot day. And when the taxi driver commented about being a hot day, we were clueless.

Evening we hit few famous spots like Times Square, Grand central....walked and shopped for souvenirs. It doesn't matter day or night, people all the time walk and eat. 24 hrs food places are open catering from rich to poor. Have seen lot of African american women laughing hysterically for no apparent reason other than just to attract opposite sex. Later on, went on to check out Indian restaurant. Oops! forgot the name. Surprised to see that the whole street is with full of Indian restaurants, next to each other.

Times Square at Night
Inside Grand Central
Grand Central
.....to be Continued

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Time Magazine's Best Countries to Raise Kids

 

As you can see, United States did not make it!! The index tallies the best countries for children based on three factors that impact a large part of kids’ growth: health, education and nutrition.

Read more: Time's Newsfeed

Friday, August 3, 2012

Back in the Air - Continued(second day in NYC)

Crowd near NBC plaza to watch Adam Levine's Live concert

Adam Levine at NBC Plaza
Next day, we woke up early to hit NBC plaza to see Live concert performed by Singer Adam Levine. I even visualized of myself showing off to TV cameras of my brightly decorated poster about my search for Lufthansa Steward with date and flight number and requesting anybody to contact me if they know the right person. But apparently, we did not wake up too early to even enter the block or even the nearby block where he was performing. Once the crowd got filled in, the police blocked the whole street. Walking back and forth the whole block, covering either side of the stage in a hope of a glimpse is no use other than killing time.  Not only the block, but the block leading to plaza has been blocked for late comers. I was so disappointed with the whole scenario. They could have a kept a walking path, for people to just get at least a glimpse of the stage. Totally horrible, but they are some real fans who somehow make it possible and stand right in front of the stage. All I saw was Al Roker and Adam Levine on a nearby TV screen.

What we came to know from this experience is NBC  prerecords and edits the show before showing it to the viewers. The concert too, they don't show the entire one but shows the viewers only the current hit songs of the singer. Even though, the singer performs for more than 30 minutes without long breaks.

From there, we headed to the hotel, to have our free hotel breakfast. I recall one particular incident, which  happened when I was trying to get on to the elevator. Even though, I pressed the button, the elevator doors got closed even though a young European tried his best to stop. After few seconds, the elevator door opened.....we both gave each other a satisfying look for being successful in our attempts to stop the elevator. Even though he was handsome...even though such a cute incident happened....even though our eyes met... I did not feel any connection with him. But the whole time on the elevator, I thought about Steward. That's when I realized, Steward was special. He and I had something special....rapport between was from the get go, nothing was forced upon, understanding and attraction between each other was instant which really, a very rare thing in this world.

After sometime, I saw the same guy downstairs, ready to hit the streets. But then came his girlfriend....holding  each other, they kissed for long time which made me feel uneasy. I really love "young love" - so much hope, innocence and purity especially from young guys.

After breakfast, we went to FAO Schwarz® Toys - home of the legendary toy company where kids can walk on the piano and make their own music. Kids were happy and satisfied with the store. The store covered pretty much everything from trains to classic characters. Even though, my daughter made us buy - make your own doll - we felt pretty expensive but couldn't say anything when our son got the best, unique and an expensive toy which you get only in FAO Schwarz.

Why to whine when you get the best toy ever -
The unbreakable remote controlled helicopter flies up and down, forward/backwards, clockwise/counter clockwise and left and right.







 In the city that never sleeps, there's a store that never stops.The Apple store on Fifth Ave. in New York is unique because the store is underground. The only thing you can see above ground is a giant glass club with glass staircase, glass elevator and a big Apple logo.
From there on, we went to buy tickets to the famous Broadway show - The Phantom of the Opera for Saturday afternoon.

A great discovery, if you want to get discounted tickets to experience Broadway shows: TKTS Discount Booths offer tickets to Broadway and Off Broadway musicals and plays at up to 50% off. With dozens of productions on sale every day, there’s something for everyone.

Well, this information we came to know after we saw the show.

Well, what can I say about "Phantom of the Opera"? It is just perfect - the stage, the artist, the music, the haunting love story....

New York city visit is not complete if you don't get to see Broadway show. Totally, something unique and after the show, I really appreciated the expensive ticket prices. While buying ticket, we asked for cheaper tickets, the guy at the counter said, "Maybe you should watch a movie in a theater."

The lyrics are so well written for the story and the haunting music captivates and forces you to give undivided attention. Once the show got over, audience clapped for more than five minutes.

The Phantom of the Opera is a novel by French writer Gaston Leroux. "Phantom" means ghost in french. The story goes like this based on my recollections/understanding from the movie/show: A musical genius who composes music and writes stories for Opera, falls for a girl Christine, secretly teaches her music at nights, demands Opera owners to make her the lead singer but couldn't openly declare his love to her as he thinks she won't love him back if she sees his deformed face. She worships him, thinking that he is angel her dad sent to her after his death.

One day, he takes her to his world by singing this beautiful song: 
Close your eyes and surrender to your darkest dreams 
Purge your thoughts of the life you knew before 
Close your eyes, let your spirit start to soar 
And you live as you've never lived before 

 Softly, deftly, music shall caress you
 Hear it, feel it secretly possess you 
Open up your mind, let your fantasies unwind
 In this darkness that you know you cannot fight 
The darkness of the music of the night

See the lyrics of the song "Think of me". She sings while thinking about her childhood friend, on her first day as a lead singer:

Think of me, think of me fondly 
When we've said goodbye 
Remember me once in a while 
Please promise me, you'll try 

Then you'll find that once again you long 
To take your heart back and be free
If you'll ever find a moment
Spare a thought for me

Whenever I hear this song, I'll think about steward. When she was singing this song, her childhood friend Raoul hears and from there on their love affair starts which makes Phantom jealous. He starts destroying whoever comes on their way. Finally, Phantom captures Christine and gets her to his dark place but Raoul without fearing for his life comes to rescue love of his life. Phantom cleverly designs his dark place in such a way that when Raoul comes to rescue, he will get trapped in a cell. He requests Christine to forget Raoul and love him but Christine says I would have loved you irrespective of your deformed face but she can't love his deformed soul. He threatens Christine to kiss her once or be ready to lose Raoul. She kisses him for her beloved sake. And then at the end, The Phantom, having experienced kindness and compassion for the first time, sets them both free. Christine returns the Phantom's ring to him, and he tells her he loves her. She cries, forces herself to turn away, and exits with Raoul. The Phantom, weeping, claims, "It's over now, the music of the night!" before huddling on his throne and covering himself with his cape. The mob storms the lair and pulls away the cape—but the Phantom has vanished; only his mask remains. Meanwhile, Christine and Raoul sing their song "All I ask you"....
 {Christine} 
All I want is freedom 
A world with no more night 
And you always beside me 
To hold and to hide me 

{Raoul} 
Than say you'll share with me 
One love one lifetime 
Let me lead you 
From your solitude 
Say you need me 
With you 
Here beside you 
Anywhere you go 
Let me go too Christine 
That's all I ask of you

Actually, in the movie, they show the elderly Raoul at the auction recollecting about the past glory of the place and at the end the elderly Raoul rides to a cemetery where he goes to visit Christine's tomb, which reveals that she died only two years before, in 1917, at age 63. Her tombstone says "Vicomtess of Chagny" and "beloved wife and mother", suggesting she married Raoul, had children and died of old age. He lays the Phantom's toy monkey which he wins at the auction at her grave site, and notices that on the left of the tombstone lies a red rose with a black ribbon tied around it (a trademark of the Phantom) with the engagement ring attached to it.

*********************************************************************************

There is this famous song by Andrew Lloyd Webber called "Love Changes Everything" truly portrays what happens when you fall in love. I can easily relate to the song.

Love, Love changes everything:
Hands and faces,
Earth and sky, 
Love, Love changes everything: 
How you live and How you die
Love Can make the summer fly, 
Or a night Seem like a lifetime. 

Yes, Love, Love changes everything: 
Now I tremble At your name. 
Nothing in the World will ever 
Be the same. 

Love, Love changes everything: 
Days are longer, 
Words mean more. 

Love, Love changes everything:
Pain is deeper Than before. 
Love Will turn your world around, 
And that world Will last for ever. 

Yes, Love, Love changes everything, 
Brings you glory, Brings you shame. 
Nothing in the World will ever Be the same. 

Off Into the world we go, 
Planning futures, Shaping years. 
Love, Bursts in, and suddenly 
All our wisdom Disappears. 

Love Makes fools of everyone:
All the rules 
We make are broken. 

Yes, Love, Love changes everyone. 
Live or perish in its flame. 
Love will never, 
Never let you 
Be the same.

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Well, what do you think about the story? Thinking about the story makes me wonder how some are so lucky  to have not one but more than one true lover. Th best part of the Broadway show was even my kids enjoyed it. After coming from the trip, my kids played over and over, the Phantom of the Opera CD. And even watched the movie. Good decision by me to choose this show over Spiderman or Evita.


If I trace back my memory lane, we saw the show on Saturday not on Friday. After buying tickets, we went to NBC studios which I tell is totally waste. They freely promoted Dr. Oz about smart he is and when he records the show and how he interacts with audience....blah blah...Later, we saw Saturday Day Night Live studios which is totally a very small place but manages to call popular musicians to perform. Later, they picked up two young members from audience to show us how the meteorologists report about weather in the newsroom. Freak incident was when the young girl couldn't read from the prompter due to her eye sight. Anyway the whole thing was just waste of time and money. 

Rockfeller center in Summer. Sorry! no ice skating rink, no romance, no serendipity.
Yes, of course, Beautiful place to eat but too harsh on your wallet!


Sitting area outside Macy's in NYC.
We need it after all that shopping!!
Never in life faced foot pain
which I faced after shopping at Macy's
because of walking with high heels.
Got to be stylish even though
your feet is aching :)
From there, we went on to do shopping. So amazed to see the designs, vibrant unique colors and unlimited choice. Not only, for women but for kids and men. My daughter would have got spoiled if we lived in NYC.Think about the indifference girls will feel if the rich kid dresses up everyday with modern, eye pleasing fancy clothes. But what I noticed in Macy's store was clothes
 were moderately priced, so anybody with a good sense can afford to buy some fancy clothes for their kids.

Inside Macy's store - seven floors of shopping paradise
.....to be continued