Travel Diaries 3: Halcyon Harihareshwar – Day 1

Harihareshwar. A quaint beach village in the Maharashtrian district of Raigad, nestled in the valley of the four surrounding hills Harihareshwar, Bramhadri, Pushpadri and Harshinachal. This village was one of our first discoveries on the less travelled trail through the mountains and beaches around Mumbai. About 200 km away from the city, the beaches and coastal formations of Harihareshwar boast of rare beauty topped off with unique geological features.

We started off on a cool November morning around 6:30 am (oh yes we got late L) for a 2 day 1 night trip to Harihareshwar.

The Road to Harihareshwar

We took NH 17 (Bombay – Goa Road) and reached the hilly town of Roha after taking a right turn from Nagothane. From Roha we took the Roha-Murud Road to the village of Mhasala and then to Harihareshwar.

Now let me tell you the beauty of this trail is fascinating.

Harihareshwar beach

Harihareshwar beach

Yes. I had to stop and get out of the car to admire it.

But the road quality is really, really painful (for the driver). Keeping that in mind you’d probably better take the Mangaon exit off the NH17 which is the next exit after Nagothane.

MTDC Resort at Harihareshwar

It was 2 in the afternoon when we reached Harihareshwar. A silent sleepy hamlet. Very few people on the road. And a complete absence of mobile networks (I’m not lying), compensated for by a neighbourhood mom and pop store with a PCO housing a BIG land phone. I felt I’d been transported back in time.

Now we all know managing accommodation in any well-known and well-located MTDC resort without prior booking is some sort of a fairy tale.

You wouldn’t believe this – when we reached the one in Harihareshwar just ONE of their tourist cottages was still available – everything else was already occupied – and not just that, a couple arrived just about 10 minutes after us and could not be accommodated.

Harihareshwar has two major beaches – the North beach and the South beach. The MTDC resort is a cluster of cottages spread over a wooded area right on the South beach. Our cottage was just about a few hundred meters away from the sea. They have cottages which are far closer – in fact there’s a beachside MTDC-owned restaurant where the waves literally wet your feet – but unfortunately maintenance work was going on all around the beachside constructions when we visited, so we missed out on the surreal look-at-the-sea-from-your-porch experience.

Lodging at Harihareshwar

The room rent was Rs.2500 per day for us. The room was ok, but not great (true to the comments tourists have made about them all over the internet). But we hadn’t driven 200 km to admire the beauty of the interiors of the room, so we couldn’t care less about that. (As you can see, we have no photos of it.:D) And hey, it did have a big French window opening into a porch overlooking the woods. And none of the windows had any grills. :) :) However I wouldn’t suggest keeping them open at night unless you want to be devoured alive by the mosquitos.

The only irksome part of the MTDC lodging experience was that the authorities were too hung up about us vacating the room strictly within the scheduled check out time – something that’s unusual in most hospitality establishments.

Food at Harihareshwar

Both veg and non-veg food is available at the MTDC restaurant. Each meal cost us about Rs. 600 – 700 (for both of us). The food is quite tasty here (oh and did I mention we had lip smacking freshly fried Pomfrets on one occasion? ;)). But as with almost any Indian restaurant anywhere in the country in any price band – some dishes here can be spicier than you expect. :D

As I mentioned, the original MTDC restaurant was right on the South beach. The makeshift one was right beside the entrance to the MTDC compound, and had open air seating arrangements …

Harihareshwar beach

… perhaps annoying the serene woods around… 

Harihareshwar beach

… but definitely to the delight of their princesses.

Harihareshwar beach

Harihareshwar beach

So all in all – as I’m sure you already understand – don’t choose to stay in the MTDC property if you:

  1. Would like a 5-star room.
  2. Think you would faint at the thought of dry leaves falling into your curry.
  3. Are a proud animal-hater.
  4. Don’t care much about staying close to the sea.

After a quick lunch we started down the wooded trail in our backyard, wandering lazily until we stopped in our tracks to see this.

Harihareshwar beach

The South beach of Harihareshwar

If you really want to know what “pristine” means when used to describe a beach, come to Harihareshwar South. For almost two hours we walked barefoot on the sands and the rocks, with not a single other soul around.

Apart from these souls, of course.

Fauna of Harihareshwar

Harihareshwar beach

Harihareshwar beach

Harihareshwar beach

Yes. A jellyfish-like creature of the ocean that was throbbing (don’t ask me its name or anything)!

We spent around two or more hours soaking up the last rays of the day on the Harihareshwar sands and waters.

We lost track of time as we imbibed all the sparkling blue serenity around …

Harihareshwar beach

Harihareshwar beach

… sometimes literally.

Harihareshwar beach

Flora of Harihareshwar

Harihareshwar beach

Apart from the usual Jhau party at some distance from the sea, a vast part of the South beach was covered with those strange white shoots. Do you know what they are? We’d suspected they’re aerial roots or pneumatophores of mangroves but there’s a tiny glitch with that explanation.

Where are the mangroves??

Check out part 2 of this series, Travel Diaries 3: Halcyon Harihareshwar Part 2, where I tell you about our adventures around the breathtakingly craggy North beach. 

Q&A: It Seems that My Wife and I are Losing Connect Due to Stress. What Should I Do?

Q:My wife and I live in Mumbai. We have been married for three years. I’d met her online when I was in college. We had been in an almost purely long distance relationship for five years before our marriage. Currently I’m in quite a drudgery of a corporate job – running 9 to 9 each day. But I’m ambitious and aim to break free of this life of slavery. Hence I’ve taken up a few projects outside of my job which my wife is also involved in.

The reason I write to you is – of late a never-ending ennui seems to have settled down in our relationship. We’re both stressed. Life’s demands stress us more. We tend to fight and find faults a lot. And we make up by going out for a movie, shopping, coffee etc. Then again go through the same cycle.

I remain really busy with my work and other stuff. I know she really wants me to spend quality time with her. I try to do that but sometimes I myself feel like even though I’m physically present with her, mentally I’m somewhere else – worrying about my work, other ventures etc. Most of the time even if I try I can’t relax and be fully available to my near and dear ones. Is there any way of getting out of this rut? Please help.


stress making us lose connectPhoto by Greatist

A: You and your wife are childhood sweethearts – you met at a time when you were both college kids. Full of life. Newly-gained freedom. Young-adulthood. Aimless happiness in your head. Dreams in your eyes.

… And the enigma of distance in the story of your sweet love.

Cut to today.

You rush. From morning to night. Behind the same unexciting things.

You smile at the same boring people.

You don’t like what you do.

You get stressed by it.

Way too much of your life is spent on the sustenance of life itself (which is, earning money and your corporate job), and not on living it. Life feels futile.

This makes you frustrated.

Life is not nearly like you imagined it. And this makes both of you disappointed, confused, even mildly shocked, deep inside.

You both develop coping mechanisms – each your own.

This is where your disconnect starts.

To put it simply:

  1. Your lives have gone through a huge change between when you fell in love and today.
  2. Each of you has developed your own individual coping strategy to deal with this change.
  3. In this process your priorities have diverged.

This is what is giving rise to the apparent distance and lack of understanding between the two of you today.

Add to that the fact that you’ve taken on entrepreneurial projects. This has three implications.

  1. These demand a major portion of your time and energy, thereby leaving out less time for the two of you to spend together.
  2. At a mental level you’re highly involved with these projects and you want a lot out of them. She sometimes falls short of your expectations.
  3. Third, and most importantly – these are very, very close to your heart. Maybe sometimes at an emotional level you’re so involved with these, that you have a little less focus on your family life. You have mentioned even if you’re physically present with your wife, you’re not always mentally available.

LK – the fact that you’re so serious about reviving your relationship shows that you love her really, really a lot. And that’s the reason you will succeed in getting your relationship back on track.


First things first. Let’s start from the roots. As we both know, the root here is – mental stress.

stress making us lose connectPhoto by Manahil Qureshi

You hit the nail on the head when you said you can’t relax and be fully available to your near and dear ones. You see the root of your problem?

She obviously senses that. Deep connection nurtured by quality time spent together is central to her emotional needs from you. Your constant stress is making you more and more unavailable to her and giving rise to a gap – between her needs from her spouse and what her spouse is able to provide.

You know very well that quick-fixes like gifts, movies and a coffee outside are just that – quick fixes, and not solutions.

The solution obviously is – reducing stress in your life.

How do we go about that?

Here are a few simple steps that you can start with:

  1. Be more organized with your time. Every night make a list of all your tasks for the next day and make a simple plan of at what time you’ll do which task.
  2. Meditate and do breathing exercises every day for just five minutes. Not more than that. Just five minutes of your time every day.
  3. Let go. Choose happiness. Drive your life, don’t be driven by it. The root of stress is feeling drawn in two or more different directions at the same time. Let’s say you’re with your wife. You want to spend quality time with her but you’re also feeling guilty inside for not spending the same time on your entrepreneurial projects. This is being driven by life and its necessities. This gives rise to feelings of not being in control, which is the root cause of stress. But what we often miss is the fact that we’re always in control – if we take the control. In this situation, for example, driving your life instead of being driven by it would entail asking yourself, “I’m spending time away from my work. That constitutes opportunity loss for my business. At the same time I’m spending time with my wife which is deepening our connection. Will it make me happier – either in the short term or in the long term – to work on my business than spend this time together? If yes, I should now go back to work. If no, I should forget about work and make most of our time together.” It’s important to remember that there’s nothing wrong with choosing either of these options. But you need to be conscious of the fact that you have these options; the fact that it’s not like “I have to work and I also have to spend time with my wife!!” It’s like “I have two options and I choose which one to take based on my own happiness.” The second puts you in control of your life rather than putting your life in control of you.

I hope that has helped you think more clearly and consciously about life and relationships.

Go through this discussion. Think about it clearly, and let me know how this works for you.

With the best wishes for your life and happiness,


How to Flirt with a Girl – 5 Rules for Flirting with Indian Girls

How to Flirt – 5 Rules for Flirting with Indian Girls

“How to flirt with the girl at school/college/work I’ve started liking? Please help. I don’t know where to start from.”

After What to do? My parents are not agreeing to my marriage!! and Should I break up??, the commonly asked question which I’ve decided to tackle today is “How to flirt with Indian girls?”

If I were not allowed to respond to that with more than just ONE sentence, that sentence would be:

Women like men, not boys.

how to flirt with girlsPhoto by diemolu

All the rules of my How to Flirt With Indian Women 101 which I’m going to lay down below are derivative of this one basic rule.

#1.Start flirting with her online

Most guys feel shy to start a conversation with a girl face to face. If you’re wondering “How to flirt with a girl if facing her makes me nervous?” – don’t worry; turn to online chat (even if you know your girl in real life). Not having to face or directly talk to the girl you like takes the pressure off to a great extent and helps you be yourself, which is the first step of flirting successfully.

#2.Never show desperation while flirting with a girl

Nothing turns girls off more than under-confident desperation. I’ve already talked about this in the discussion on how to impress girls. It’s equally pertinent to the one on how to flirt with girls. Don’t be apologetic for taking her time (girls hate that). Don’t ping her saying “hi”. Ping her saying, “Hi XYZ! How’re you doing?” In case she doesn’t reply the first time you ping her, never use the same opening line the next time. Start by something like, “Hey XYZ! The ABC video you’d shared was hilarious. Where did you find it?” It shows you’re not talking to her because you’re desperate, but because you’ve got something real to say. You get the point.

#3.Don’t give it ALL

A corollary of point #2 is – don’t be her dog. You’re flirting with your girl; you’re not her boyfriend yet. You need to attract her first, before you show her how responsible you are. So while flirting with a girl, don’t be the oh-so-caring I’ll-do-anything-for-you-including-daily-chores man-in-waiting of hers – that can wait for life after marriage. :P For now, that kind of behaviour will make her like you as a friend and a pet – not as a man she feels attracted to.

#4.Complimenting her is a must

If you want to successfully flirt with a girl – especially an Indian girl – striking a balance between sounding hungry and sounding bold is key. Don’t start with, “Hey! You’re looking hot in that photo you recently posted. ;)” On the other hand, if it has been a week that you’ve started talking/chatting with her and you haven’t actually gotten around to complimenting her even once yet, chances are you’re not going anywhere. Compliments don’t always have to be on her looks. And they need to sound natural, casual and confident. Which brings me to …

how to flirt with girlsPhoto by CubaGallery

#5.Test waters continuously while flirting with a girl

Each girl has her distinct level of comfort with flirting. Some stop talking to you if you call them hot, while some feel offended if you don’t. ;) Continuously test her limits while flirting with a girl. Try a hint, like, “You’re the most interesting girl I know.” If she responds favourably (favourable responses include :P ;) J), after a few days try, “Of late I’ve started looking forward to you coming online every day.” If that goes ok too, try, “If you were not so busy, I’d have loved to go for a coffee with you sometime.” You get the point. You need to be bold enough fast enough to hold her interest, while making sure you don’t offend her.

What are the golden rules which worked when you started flirting with your girl? Let me know by leaving a comment. 

Help! My Parents are not Agreeing to My Marriage!

I belong to caste A, my boyfriend belongs to caste B. We have been together for two years. None of our parents are OK with an inter-caste marriage. But we are unable to live without each other. Our parents take the reactions of their relatives and neighbours way more seriously than our feelings. They’re telling us about the loss of face in their respective societies that they’ll have to suffer if this marriage happens. His parents even want dowry which my parents are unable to provide. How can we convince them? Please tell me. We want to marry with those precious blessings only and we’re ready to wait till we get them.

Here’s the actual comment from Shrivalli.

Parents are not agreeing to marriagePhoto by keeping it real

On the average I get about three such queries every day and they make me sad and angry. Very angry.

I feel – what in the name of God are we doing to our younger generation? How can some dogmatic parents have so little regard for the happiness of – not a random guy on the street but – their own child!

Boys and girls (and don’t demand to be called men and women. If I could find the me of your age somewhere I’d have called myself a baby. Well, on second thoughts there are people who’d still call me a baby and their number is more than two, but I digress again… ;) ). In my experience of talking to, consoling and counselling scores of young people like you, I’ve observed that there are three golden rules of dealing with parents who are real tough nuts to crack, and I thought I’ll lay them down today, fuming as I am.

Have you noted that I said “dealing with”, not “convincing”? You’ll soon find out why.

Rule #1. Your life belongs to YOU.

Not your parents, not your spouse.

You’ll never make everyone happy. Take it from me – it’s rarely possible.

Of course the first step is to try to convince your parents. And you’ll do that to the best of your abilities. However, if it proves impossible, you need to take a stand – one way or the other.

If you have to take a stand that involves sacrificing someone’s happiness for someone else’s, whose happiness will you choose?

Surprise! Surprise! The answer is – yours.

Be very clear in your mind.

It’s not about choosing your boyfriend or girlfriend over your parents. It’s about choosing yourself over everyone else.

Let’s face it – life is all about making choices. Making choices that make you happier. Not happy, but happier, than making any other choice.

Will it not make you unhappy to irk your parents by marrying against their wish? Of course.

Will it not make you unhappy to say goodbye forever to the person you love?

Of course.

Be selfish and choose the option that makes you the least unhappy, and then let go.  

How? Read on to find out.

Rule #2. If someone’s paying for your food, you’d better do as they say

If you’re financially dependent on anyone, you can never be fully free. Period. It’s a sad fact and it’s time you stopped burying your head in the sand.

People facing pressures from their parents are usually young people just starting out in their careers. In most cases they’ve either not started earning, or are still financially partly dependent on their parents.

Parents are not agreeing to marriagePhoto by starush

If neither you nor your boyfriend/girlfriend is earning – work on that before working on anything else. If your parents are paying for you, you’d better do as they say. I’m sorry, but there are no ways of going against reality.

Does that mean money is the only language that you can use – even with your closest family? No. But it gives you the mental strength and confidence to even believe that you can make your own decisions. And you have no idea about the power of that belief.

Why? Go to Rule #3 for that.

If between the two of you you’re earning an amount which won’t allow for the maintenance of the same standard of living you currently enjoy – well, that’s a call you need to take. Again, you need to choose the option that makes you the least unhappy:

Option #1: Embark on a radically new life. A life with the man/woman you love, a life of absolute freedom, but one which offers drastically lower levels of material comfort than you currently enjoy.  

Option #2: Decide that you won’t be able to adjust to the above reality of a reduced standard of living and say goodbye to the man/woman you love.

There’s nothing wrong with choosing either of these options.

I repeat – There’s nothing wrong with choosing either of these options.

Keep the guilt and the emotions out temporarily. Get your head clear. Make a rational, practical and well-thought out decision, and prepare yourself mentally for the consequences. Don’t go into a hailstorm of remorse when those consequences become reality, because you know that you can’t have it all and you’ve made the best decision.

Rule #3. Cost-benefit analysis always works

This world works on cost-benefit analyses. The costs and benefits can be purely emotional. That analysis might happen in our minds entirely unconsciously. But it’s a rule of Nature that it happens. In fact it’s crucial to our survival.

Let’s take the example of your parents’ decision of allowing you to marry your girlfriend/boyfriend.


Benefits for your parents

Costs for your parents

If I say “Yes”

My child will be happy.

I might lose face in the community due to the marriage being inter-caste.

If I say “No”

No loss of face in the community.

My child will be unhappy.


I think it’s very clear that their child’s happiness – while important – is not a determining factor for them so far as this decision is concerned. (Otherwise why on Earth would they deliberately want their child to get married to someone other than the one they’re already deeply in love with?)

Now put yourself in your parents’ shoes. Is it looking very compelling to say a “yes” at the cost of losing face to the community?

Probably not.

Now look at this one:


Benefits for your parents

Costs for your parents

If I say “Yes”

My child will be happy.

I might lose face in the community due to an inter caste marriage of my child.

If I say “No”

My child will be unhappy.

My child will get married to their girlfriend/boyfriend, leave home and cut off contacts with me. Hence I’ll lose face in the community.


What does that look like to you now?

I know countless inter-caste couples who have tried to convince their parents, failed and then gone ahead to get married anyway, leaving their parents’ home.

You know what?

In 100% of the cases, the parents’ accepted them within one year of getting married.* :)

Blackmail? So be it. If that’s the tried, tested and fully working method, please help yourselves. ;)

All the best. :)

*[Update: As pointed out by some readers, this requires some clarifications. When I say “100% of the cases”, I mean 100% of the cases that I know of. Going ahead with your decision is not a guaranteed way of turning your parents around, but the best shot you have at it.
In my opinion, if they don’t turn around and decide to disown you forever – well, that’s the best proof of your decision having been the correct one. ;)]

“Should I Break Up?” The ONE Question You Need to Ask

 My boyfriend and I have been together for three years. Over the last eight months or so we’ve spent more of our time together fighting than doing anything else. Something seems to have changed, but I don’t know what. Sometimes I feel I never understood him to start with and this relationship has been a colossal mistake. Should I break up?

Should I break upPhoto by Love is the key

Pooja from Thane is not alone. All relationships hit lows, and we’re often kept guessing which ones can be worked out and which ones can’t.

“Should I stay and work it out, or should I break up?” If you’ve ever been in a relationship, that question has probably crossed your mind more than once. Today’s post is an exploration of that question.

Fortunately, there’s just ONE question you need to ask yourself to know exactly what to do. That question is:

“Is this relationship giving me what I need from it?” You stay only if the answer is, “Yes.”

But what does it mean to “get what you need from your relationship”? Here are the top four indicators.

#1. Is communication easy? Even during fights?

One of the surefire signs of a fulfilling relationship is ease of communication.

All couples fight.

During fights, do they call you a “&*^%”, “^$$#”, “****”?

Or they catch you completely off-guard every time by throwing your shortcomings – which you confessed to them at a vulnerable moment – back at you in a cruel way?

Do they shout their lungs out?

Or they catch you completely off-guard every time by citing incidents from the past which apparently annoyed them, but they never told you at the time?

Fighting, and making your displeasure clear to the other person is natural. It happens in every relationship. You fight, but even when you fight you don’t have any problem understanding each other (even each other’s displeasure).  

But if you feel manipulated, baffled and accused in completely unexpected ways all the time, there’s a communication gulf between the two of you. Somewhere you don’t understand each other, each other’s language, each other’s thoughts, expectations and needs.

If you don’t understand them, you’re most likely not fulfilling them.

#2.Does their vision of the future look alarmingly different from yours?  

On one of those rare occasions when you’re not fighting and yet talking, they announced their dreams of living and working in different countries throughout their career.

Your heart sank.

You remembered how you whispered into each other’s ears your dreams of settling down back in your quaint little hometown, in the initial days of your relationship.

Should I break upPhoto by Gizo

This isn’t sounding like the old him/her you knew. Somewhere along the way the needs and wants from life have changed – their, or yours.

A relationship is not about one of you fitting into the other’s journey. It’s about figuring out your journey, and finding someone who shares it. More or less. So, if you have very different needs from life as of today, it’s time to re-evaluate the relationship.

#3.Whenever you’re alone with your partner, do you wish other people were around?

Communication has broken down, and you’ve come a long way from each other. Emotionally. The alone-time you both so looked forward to is now something you both dread. Alone-time now looks like nothing more than an opportunity for Apocalypse-time.

You don’t have anything to talk to each other about. If you try, it ends in an argument.

You’re judging each other all the time, waiting for signs in their behaviour which validate your newly formed set of negative expectations.

If you prefer being with others more than with each other, it’s time to assess things very carefully.

#4. Are you always critical of each other?

His mannerisms come across as obnoxious to you. He looks at you and thinks, “I could get a so much more beautiful girl.”

Worse – you compare each other with others. In your mind, of course.

Even worse – you try to change them. You well-meaningly suggest how they should become a better person.

And before you know it this has led to yet another nerve-racking fight.

Forgiveness thy name is love. All of us have flaws. But if you’re in love with someone you’ll look past them – even find them cute. And so, if irrational displeasure at almost everything your partner is and does has crept into the relationship, it’s more a sign of the relationship wilting than some real new shortcomings you both have magically developed.

There are dozens of signs – small and big – to look for, when it comes to deciding, “Should we think things through once again?” Over to you…

5 Women’s Day Gift Ideas for Your Special Woman

The web is abuzz with preparations for the upcoming Women’s Day on 8th March. (And Love in India is no exception. If you haven’t ‘Like’d my entry to the Indusladies Women’s Day Blog Contest 2013, please consider doing it now. Thank you. ;))

Women's DayPhoto by movementh

Women’s Day is not like any other Day. The idea of Women’s Day took shape in the beginning of the 20th century from events around the burgeoning labour movement of that period. The first ever National Women’s Day was celebrated on Feb. 28, 1909 in the US by The Socialist Party of America in honour of the Feb. 28, 1908  labour strike and protests organized in New York by garment workers in which women played a pivotal role.

Consequently, Women’s Day has come to stand for political and economic freedom for women. It’s a symbol of women’s identity, equality and empowerment.  Women’s Day therefore, is not a day for your regular chocolates and roses. I believe the gifts you give to your special woman on this special day ought to reflect your belief in the strength and power in her womanhood.

Here are a few ideas I had.

#1. Women’s books

Feminist literature is always a great choice when it comes to Women’s Day gifting. One of the first books which come to mind in this category would be The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf, a compelling treatise on how the modern times have come with increasing pressure on women to conform to a rather limiting and rigid standard of physical beauty even as women’s political, legal and economic freedom has increased more than ever before. If your woman has a taste for a tad weightier philosophical non-fiction you can try The Female Eunuch by Germaine Greer – another smashing best-seller from the 1970s – a passionate exploration of women’s sexuality and its possible repression by our current consumerist society.

Or you can go for something of a more general interest like the celebrated fictionized monograph on space for women as writers A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf.

#2. Movies

Something we all love. Why not celebrate this Women’s Day by gifting (and watching) DVDs of movies which talk about endless struggles through history of perfectly ordinary women who emerged extraordinarily strong and capable as they fought for themselves and what they believed in, at the cost of everything – sometimes their own life.  If you’re looking for ideas, the wildly popular fictionized real story of a single mother and fierce environmental activist Erin Brokovitch is a good place to start.

My personal favourite however is North Country – another reality-based account of the long battle (and a landmark victory) of one of America’s earliest female miners against her employer on charges of tolerating a range of sexual abuses meted out to women workers by their male colleagues.

A relatively recent release in this genre is Made in Dagenham.  a 2010 movie on the valiant protests of women workers of 1968 in the Ford Dagenham car plant against gender discrimination at the workplace.

If she’s a fan of vintage movies, Silkwood is the pick for you. It’s Meryl Streep’s portrayal of Karen Silkwood, the brave metallurgy worker at a plutonium plant who dared to protest against the blatant violation of worker safety measures there and was deliberately contaminated, psychologically tortured and maybe even murdered as a result of it.

#3. Something special

Throughout history, sexuality has been used as an instrument of keeping women repressed prisoners of their own bodies – with tools as varied as sexual molestation inflicted by a stranger to forced pregnancies imposed by her own family.  As a result, legalization of birth control and abortion marked a turn in the history of women’s liberation in this world – by putting women in control of their own bodies. The relatively newly invented women’s condom takes this control one step further, which can be a radical and very thoughtful symbolic gift for your special woman on Women’s Day.  If you think you’re up to it, these Women’s Day special female condom deals on CupoNation, which I were invited to check out, can come in very handy. The apt slogan – “celebrate womanhood by taking care of yourself” – perfectly sums up my view on this.

#4.Women’s handicrafts

We feel proud to be the fortunate emancipated daughters of centuries of battle for liberation of the fairer sex. Women today have more legal, political and economic freedom than ever before.

But which women?

Women's DayPhoto by PhotoRipple

Only the women you and I know. The women at the bottom of the pyramid continue to remain the worst victims of the patriarchal social values and consequent loss of freedom, especially in our traditionally inclined culture.  On this Women’s Day, show your solidarity to the women’s cause by supporting these women. Gift your special woman a work of handicraft/ethnic clothing/decorative items/homemade snacks produced by rural women’s cooperatives and self-help groups. You can start from any of the Indian state emporia. Or you can try out the produce of non-profit organizations trying to help downtrodden women in a productive way like Village Women Craft or Sadhana

#5. Something original

Finally, the creative stuff.

You want to show her you value her as an individual? Write her a letter telling her what makes her special, not only as a woman, but as a human being.

If you’re a traditional household (in case you’re married) take up some of her usual responsibilities – by cooking a surprise dinner for her for example.

Tell her to take a day off from the daily grind and do exactly what she likes Commit to managing the rest on your own. Go crazy (if you aren’t already).

Do you have any other ideas for celebrating this women’s day with your special woman? What are your thoughts? Let me know by leaving a comment.