We’re half way through 2021 already!!! Time flies..I wish the pandemic disappeared like time too though. Haven’t we had enough of this stupid virus already? As if the original virus wasn’t deadly enough, we now have beta and delta versions and country specific mutations of the virus wreaking havoc in our lives.
I know I’m blessed because despite it all, I had a lovely month in June – with friends, books, exercise, getting to soak in the nature and discovering some really good music and shows. Still, I know many aren’t as privileged as me and for their sake, I pray this virus goes away and disappears. I think this will be a constant prayer to the Universe, until the pandemic ends.
So, here’s the sweet and simple wrap up of all the stuff I did in June and how I fared with respect to my personal goals 🙂
I read five books in June and this was a bit of a mixed bag this time. I had high hopes for some of them and was disappointed, whereas there were some books that really impressed and inspired me 🙂
- These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️) – A YA Fantasy with a Romeo and Juliet retelling set in 1926 Shanghai. This is the author’s debut novel and the first of the duology and I was thoroughly entertained till the end reading this book. One of my favorite reads this month 🙂
- Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️) – A romance inspired by You’ve Got Mail, featuring Muslim diaspora characters and lots of delicious food. Need I say more?
- The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai (⭐️⭐️⭐️) – Another romance (gosh, I’ve gone overboard with the romance this month it looks like lol), very in-with-the-times romance and with a great cast and dialogues. However, there was too much smut for my comfort, and that’s something that takes the joy out of my love for romances lately 🙂
- How To Be A Writer by Ruskin Bond (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️) – I absolutely adored this book. Simple and useful advice by a very loved writer. And with some funky illustrations too. Will make a superb gift for young writers and old
- Memory of Light by Ruth Vanita (⭐️⭐️⭐️) – The great disappointment of this month. I had such high hopes from this book and this was the BOTM pick for two readalongs to celebrate Pride. The book had so much promise, because the writer writes so well, her words full of rich imagery. However, most of us readers felt that the book lacked soul and was probably too short to explore the themes we would’ve liked to read more about. Nevertheless, at least we have a fiction based in historic India, which talks about a sapphic love story between two courtesans.
My writing suffered in June. As usual I started with a bang and with more seriousness, and tried my hand at the Ray Bradbury revision challenge and also tried to make a writing routine. However, after about 10 days into the month, as always, my writing took a back seat as life, work and other socialising along with illnesses took over. Hopefully, I will be better in July 🙂
I also tried my hand at writing another poem on topics that are very close to my heart, called Longing 🙂
Socials, Life, Travel and Other Updates:
- When it is monsoons in Maharashtra, the state completely transforms. The green is greener than usual, there is a cold bite to the air, which believe it or not is colder than what it is here in winters lol! There is a constant drizzle and the air smells petrichor – one of my favorite smells in the world. I was blessed to be able to go out on a few drives and then on a weekend getaway with friends to Panchgani. I’ll write a short travelogue on the Panchgani getaway soon 🙂
- Apparently June was also Internal Yoga Day. I don’t do Yoga, but sometimes I do Suryanamaskars to stretch after a long day of sitting or before a run. My sister in law asked us to share a picture with our favorite Yoga pose and I posted mine with a book 😉 LOL
- I ran and walked a lot more in June than in May and I felt good looking at my stats on Strava 🙂 In May I had clocked in 55Kms and in June I clocked in 68 Kms! So proud of myself, because I did a few 5K runs 🙂 I hope I can trump June’s distance in July 😉
- I also got my first shot of the vaccine this month and my after effects were pretty terrible. I had fever and body ache for nearly four days! Then again I fell ill with cold and a bit of body ache after a few days. Work wasn’t helpful since the last week of June was crazy, but hopefully July will be better both health and work wise 🙂
Music I discovered and loved in June:
- I am still in love with AURORA and I just cant get enough of her song – Little boy in the grass
- Another discovery was Twenty One Pilot‘s new album – almost all the songs are simply amazing, the punk rock with a bit of rap that I love. But my favourites are The Outside and Redecorate 🙂
- And finally, Kristian Kostov’s – A beautiful mess – both the original and the china edit. The violin piece in the songs completely have my heart
Show(s) That I Discovered and Loved in June
So, in May, I had clubbed the music and show in a single category but I decided to split this out in June, because I had to give special mentions to two screen adaptation that I watched and absolutely loved.
- Word of Honor on Netflix (Chinese Wuxia Drama, screen adaptation of the novel ‘The Wanderers’ by Priest) – Where and how do I even begin to profess my love, admiration and obsession with this show and its leading characters and cast – Zhou Zishu played by Zhang Zhehan and Wen Kexing played by Gong Jun! If you want to know even an inkling of what I felt about this show, check out my friend Sahi’s post here, where she sums it up pretty well 🙂 Just like The Untamed last year, I think this year’s saving grace and television/screen highlight is going to be ‘Word of Honor’ for me. Just like Sahi mentions in her post, this show is a brilliant example of art transcending language and the beauty of friendship. The escapist feeling that these shows have and their ethereal music.. not to mention the crackling chemistry of these good looking actors… gosh.. these shows (The Untamed and WoH) have been one of the things that have kept me happy and sane and escape the sadness and helplessness brought about from this pandemic. And fangirling about the shows and the actors with my friend Sahi, has simply been one of the best things in the month of June, and definitely on going 😉
- Motherless Brooklyn (Movie adaptation of book by the same name on Amazon Prime) – This is a movie that I watched with my husband earlier in the month and Edward Norton was truly stupendous in the movie. It doesn’t hurt that he has directed and produced the movie, but his acting was superb! The plot is quite straightforward once you get to about half of the movie, but its the dialogue delivery and Edward Norton’s acting that had me rating this movie very high on my list of shows/movies I’ve watched 🙂
And that’s all Folks! I think all things considered, I had a pretty good month in June. I’d love to hear about your June – what were your highlights and lowlights? Have you read any of these books or what is a song you discovered and liked? What are your goals in July? Are you as obsessed with C-dramas or K-dramas as I am? Tell me all about it in the comments section 🙂