Review: Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2015)

The All-New Kindle Paperwhite
The All-New Kindle Paperwhite

It reads just like a book and is lighter to carry than most books. Here’s why you might want to consider the latest Kindle Paperwhite e-reader.

So I just got my hands on the updated Amazon Kindle Paperwhite that was launched in India earlier this year. Before I get to the review, I’d like to point out two things. Although I own a Kindle 4 and have read a few books on my friend’s Kindle Voyage, I’ve always preferred reading out of a real, solid book. The smell of ink on paper, the unintentionally dog-eared pages, the act of turning actual pages and the beauty of the book cover are just some of the tangible pleasures that I value. The second thing is that I have not read a single book in the last three months. A lot has been happening, and reading books has sadly not found a place in this unexpectedly busy period in my life. So, here I am devouring a book after a good while. I’ve chosen to re-read an old favourite and all-time classic, Pride and Prejudice. And, I’ve got to say that the reading experience was remarkably enjoyable and completely uninterrupted. The Amazon Kindle was designed for reading books, unlike tablets or smartphones, which can so easily distract you from the immersive world of the novel.

Kindle Paper getting started

Amazon’s Kindle has continually led the e-reader market, and this year the Kindle Voyage and the 3rd generation Paperwhite have inarguably stolen the show. Launched in 2014, the Kindle Voyage comes with a higher price tag that’s justified by additional features. The Kindle Paperwhite 2015, however, is affordably priced and provides good enough value for your money if you want a comfortable experience that’s closest to reading an actual book. That said, here’s all you need to know about the Kindle Paperwhite and what makes it one of the top e-book readers to own at the moment. You might also find this blog post helpful if you are confused about whether you should opt for the Voyage or the Paperwhite 2015. Continue reading “Review: Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2015)”

Snapshot Saturdays: A rainy day at Sapi Island

Sapi Island is quite a visual treat

When you think of an island, rarely does a rainy day come to mind. But, as you can see from this series of images, a rainy day on an island can be fun too. I’ve just returned to Mumbai from a short visit to Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, one of the two Malaysian states on the incredibly lush island of Borneo.

Sapi Island, a 15-minute speedboat ride away from Kota Kinabalu, is the nearest place to get away from the city if you want to enjoy a bit of adventure. Essentially the home of the popular 250-metre island-to-island Coral Flyer Zipline, this island receives visitors by the dozen everyday. The beach is small and perfect to lounge around before or after you go zip lining, snorkelling and scuba diving. So, you can pack in a good bit of fun before you head back on a speedboat to the Jesselton Jetty on the mainland.

The quieter end of Sapi Island, Sabah

The waters around the islands are crystal clear and the panoramic views delight the senses. We took a bit of a walk to reach the quieter end of the beach (above). Continue reading “Snapshot Saturdays: A rainy day at Sapi Island”

Fresh and luminous — Makeup trends for the season

Sorbet-hued lips and sun-kissed skin are trending big right now. Brush up on these beauty trends and more, gleaned from the freshest looks of the season

M.A.C Eyes x 15 Eye Shadow Palette in Cool Neutral (Image courtesy M.A.C)
M.A.C Eyes x 15 Eye Shadow Palette in Cool Neutral (Image courtesy M.A.C)

(Click on the images to read the story in full)

A feature on makeup trends for the monsoons, published in Promenade (for DLF Promenade, New Delhi)
A feature on makeup trends for the monsoons, published in Promenade (for DLF Promenade, New Delhi)

Continue reading “Fresh and luminous — Makeup trends for the season”

Looking back

Moving forward

As I reflect on the year that was and look forward to 2015, I’d like to say a special thanks to each and every one of you, dear readers. Thank you for supporting A Delightful Space with your interactions and encouragement. It only makes me want to write more, do more and give it my best for the next 365 days to come!

Never a dull moment in 2014
Never a dull moment in 2014

For me, 2014 represented a special year filled with plenty of good times, adventures, travel and fantastic people. It was also a special one because I took a bit of a detour from the conventional, quit my full-time job at a magazine, and started busying myself with freelance writing stints. Yes, 2014 has been quite the year! I can only say that I enjoyed every single moment of it, learning and often unlearning.

I’d like to point out that because of all this, I also came across some really interesting blogs from across the world. How truly special it is to be able to get insights into different bloggers’ lives from different corners of this world!

Stay blessed and hope you continue to enjoy my blog! See you all in 2015 ❤

WordPress has done a fabulous job in putting together my year in blogging! Below is a summary of just that.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,700 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 45 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Real men cry: One man’s mission to redefine the term masculinity

An award-winning spoken word poet, poetry slam champion, speak and writer, Carlos Andrés Gómez also starred in Spike Lee's Inside Man
An award-winning spoken word poet, poetry slam champion, speak and writer, Carlos Andrés Gómez also starred in Spike Lee’s Inside Man
I had the pleasure of interviewing spoken word artist Carlos Andrés Gómez at the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival in October this year. Like most young boys, he was taught that a man needs to put up a fight and must never shed a tear. I wondered if all this talk of softening up a man’s hardened shell was bound to draw a heckler or two.

Gómez concurred, saying, “Sometimes, things get uncomfortable during my performances. It’s alright if people disagree with me, but it’s important that they hear me out and understand what I’m saying in the right context. We’re definitely going to need more such moments when two opinions collide because we can never have change if one opinion dominates. It’s going to take many an exchange, both of the courageous and uncomfortable kind.”

His is a story worth reading, so if you’d like to give the interview a proper read, head over to The Label by Louis Philippe. You’ll also find an excellent video link there that has Carlos talking about his very own ‘Man Up Moment’.

Here’s a link to the interview: http://thelabel.in/lifestyle/people/real-men-cry

Ubud Shopping Guide

Divine handcrafted soaps from the pretty KOU Bali store
Divine handcrafted soaps from the pretty KOU Bali store

The Ubud-Gianyar area of Bali is small enough to be covered by foot. At first, you might find yourself lost on one of its many narrow by-lanes, but by the end of your stay in Ubud, you’ll know your way inside out. It does, however, help if you have a bike. Or, you could hitch a ride with one of the taxi bikes for a reasonable rate to get from one area to another. I think I really enjoyed the fact that I stayed in three different areas during my trip to Ubud — Jalan Bisma, Jalan Hanoman and Jalan Raya Sanggingnan. This post is about the amazing stores in Jalan Hanoman and Jalan Bisma. I didn’t find much at Jalan Raya Sanggingnan except for two nice restaurants and plenty of art galleries and the sprawling Neka Art Museum! Besides, I think that the first two areas are places I’d definitely go back and stay at, whereas I had chosen to stay on Jalan Raya Sanggingnan for a few days only out of convenience, given that most of the venues of the Ubud writers festival were located on that road.

It helps to know that there are a few ‘main’ roads in Ubud—Jalan Raya Ubud and the Monkey Forest Road— both of which are best avoided unless you need to get one from place to the next. I first stayed on Jalan Bisma, a road which is just a few minutes away from the buzzing heart of Ubud and the touristy Monkey Forest road that’s lined with cafes big and small, innumerable Polo factory outlet stores, a Pandora store (!) and even more than one plush Guardian pharmacy! Not my kind of place, for sure. I stayed for a single night at the lovely Honeymoon Guesthouse, which was thankfully on one of the inner lanes, far from the busy traffic-filled road. Continue reading “Ubud Shopping Guide”

Bringing the divine down to earth

Google the term ‘Chief Belief Officer’ and the only references you’ll see are those that point to an Indian man. The man in question, Devdutt Pattanaik, is still known as a Chief Belief Officer well after his tenure at Future Group as consultant on matters relating to belief and culture. A trained medical doctor, Pattanaik worked in the healthcare industry for 14 years before he became business advisor at Ernst & Young. But his passion for mythology soon turned into a profession in 2008, landing him the post of Chief Belief Officer—a designation that has evidently failed to be disassociated from him till date.

At the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival 2004 (UWRF 2014), Pattanaik hosted art workshops like “Drawing the Gods”, but it was at the festival’s main programme, “The Chief Belief Officer” that I was truly enthralled by this man’s thoughts and simple ways of deconstructing myths in a contemporary context. Simply put, he uses mythology to approach questions in a creative way. Pattanaik is also an author, columnist, illustrator and author, but he most aptly sums up his skills saying, “I have this unique ability to articulate and communicate extremely complex ideas across structures. I discovered I have a patterned way of thinking, which is part intuition, part logic. It’s an ability that many people have, but I also have the ability to communicate and articulate.”

Continue reading “Bringing the divine down to earth”