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Long ago and far away (as in from the upper reaches of Manhattan) Sandhya from Literary Safari tagged me for a 7 Things About Me meme. Here are the rules (from the source):

1) Link to the person that tagged you, and post the rules on your blog.
2) Share 7 facts about yourself.
3) Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
4) Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Since #1 is done above, I will proceed with sharing seven facts about myself.

1. I have freckles, which for some reason a lot of Indian aunties think is a personal affront to them and to the bleaching industry. But I like ’em. (edit: I meant the freckles. The jury is still out on the aunties; well, at least the ones who come armed with bleaching cream.)

2. I adore sour things. Lemons. Grapefruit. Sour belts. Lemon cake. Green mangoes. Thai papaya salad with lime. The tangier, the better. My mouth is watering now.

3. I read (sometimes) while walking in the park, or even across the street (after looking both ways first).

4. I recently discovered Tehelka and I adore that site. It is my new favorite. When I first wrote this, I was thinking in a lighthearted vein, but even from a more serious perspective, Tehelka’s writers have important, insightful points to make regarding South Asian politics. After the November attacks in Mumbai, as I was seeking solace online by trying to find answers, I found Tehelka’s Tarun Tejpal to be one of the most thoughtful, informative and human voices in the strident cacaphony that erupted online and off.

5. I am a bit (ahem) of a germaphobe. But I don’t walk around encased in plastic, so don’t worry too much about my sanity. But I do believe in coughing in my sleeve, not my hand! It drives me crazy when people cough ineffectually into hands that only half-heartedly cover the general area around their mouths. In case you think I’m totally nuts, take a look at this awesomely funny and smart video that may just convince you that the sleeve idea ain’t all that weird.

6. I have been scuba diving. In Curacao. Once. It was hands down the scariest and most sublime thing I have ever willingly done. And, by doing so, I broke the law. (I had no idea it was illegal to go without a special permit, and the friend who persuaded me to go, wisely did not tell me so.) For this I am grateful, as scuba diving is the closest I will ever get to flying. And what slow motion, dreamlike flying! My dream is to one day go again. (After proper training this time, but of course.)

7. Sometimes I am very, very, very slow in responding to email. And yet, when someone is slow in responding to me, I get sad. Go figure. I am trying to get better at this. (Both the getting faster at responding part as well as the not getting sad part.) Um…. see, this post is kind of a case in point. I do believe Sandhya tagged me like, more than nine months ago??? I mean, I’ve had friends get pregnant and have their babies already in that time. (umm, hello Henry! Love ya! So nice to have “met” you last week. You are a doll. At least the size of one. For now. Now don’t forget the Gujarati I taught you, kay? Mwah!)

Sheesh. (Note to self: Got to get better at getting back, Bookish!)

Okay. Whew. With New Year’s and all, I am so glad to have this entry finally finished and published! And now for my turn to tag others. (Rubbing hands gleefully!)

1. Joy from The Spiral of Seasons, my friend and mentor in all things healthy and librarian-y!

2. Sally from Any Given Sundry, another wonderful online friend. Her photographs are perspicacious.

3. Pranav from Scarlet Guju, my friend since babyhood, who tells it how he sees it on his hard hitting blog.

4. Ariah from Trying to Follow, possibly the most soul-searchingly honest seeker I have had the privilege to meet.

5. Linda from Touched by Cancer, a friend of great empathy and eclectic interests who reaches out to others with helpful advice through her blog.

6. Mahmud from Cruel, Crazy, Beautiful World, a friend from the west coast days, who is currently writing and writing and writing his heart out in Bangladesh. And who is having a book published very soon–called Killing the Water; definitely check it out!

7. And lastly, I’m tagging someone I know only through the blogging world; Pessimisissimo from Exotic and irrational entertainment… (and Pessimisissimo, I don’t think your obsessions are indefensible!)

Okay folks, it was nice to share with you my first post from 2009, which was more than nine months in gestation. I hope that our next mulakaat (meeting) will not be so far away. May 2009 shower blessings upon blessings upon us all!