Friday, April 06, 2007

Madness from Manila

Oh my god!!! I cannot believe that it has been more than a year since my last blog. However, having been idle here in Manila, I thought it was time to catch up with some old things, including programming and blogging. It has been a roller coaster ride during the past year, with priorities changing ever so often. Old passions, habits and hobbies taking a backseat and new interests, and ideas making a run to the post. A cursory glance at a few other bloggers from my friends circle indicated a similar kind of path being treaded by all and I started feeling more in sync with the happenings around. Maybe I m not the only one in this world undergoing the changes. I was singing "Jimmy quit, Jody got married". It was so reminisent of the old Bryan Adams number.
The year had also translated into trying out things that I had always be passionate about. Programming and travelling. I was able to travel a lots during this time while also trying my hand on programming with PERL, Dot Net and SAP. Taking on newer and higher challenges has been the order of the year, I have also realised that priorities do change for everyone as time goes on and we need to keep a constant eye to understand the need for such a change.

Sitting alone in my Hotel room and looking out of the window, felling homesick and al, I would have imagined that this is the best possible way to deflect the thought of loneliness and blogging, as always tried to soothe the pains. I have been away from home, away from my parents and sister, but never have I felt so lonely and desperate. While an onsite opportunity has never been of great interest to me, this opportunity came out of the blue and when I least expected it. While I would not say that I m crying out to get back home, it does affect your psyche and I ve understood the real impact of having your own people, in times when you are really low and would want a shoulder to lean. Learning to cope with challenges while not having the best of support from the near and dear ones is certainly a great experience the you can brag about, in future years. The first few days on the trip, were "from Hell" to say the least. However, you tend to get used to the situation and slowly adapt. I would be lying if I say that I m not counting the days that I would be here. It has been a new, exciting experience in an alien country, but there is no other place, closer home.. home sweet home. I m certainly missing the hustle and bustle of Bangalore, the constant daylong quarrels with my sister on holidays, endless discussions with my close pals on future career paths and plans and the arguments with my work mates.

Every obstacle in life gives more challenges and more opportunites to prove to yourself that there is nothing greater than human ability. After all we are the most successful of all species. Saying all this to myself, I have been trying to divert my attention to the things that I would do once I return to my home in India. Every single day that you feel that you certainly do not deserve this treatment from life, you stumble across events that make you feel that you are better off than a lot others, like a sentimental forward mail from a friend, a less fortunate kid on the road or something else that would crumple your heart.

"I always complained about not having proper shoes, until I saw someone wiith no feet".

The spur of the moment makes you feel helpless and desperate, but looking at that situation and seeing others around you, you certainly feel a lot more gifted and previleged. While I spend one more day in this distant land, waiting for the sunrise to be faster, I can only hope for better days ahead. How I wish the earth rotated a lot faster than 1666 km/hr. Travelling is going to take my thoughts of homesickness away from me for some time and I hope God and Mother Earth would fulfil my prayers for faster rotation and more frequent Sunrises.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


10th of Dec, 2005. The date would be one of the most memorable days in my life. For it was after 10 long years that there was a full-fledged School reunion. Many guys had left after 10th and hence it was all the more exciting. Cyclone was predicted for Chennai and I was supposed to leave on Friday evening for the meet. Even against the wishes of my parents and sister, I did not want to miss such a occasion. After all I was behind the entire mobilization of getting people on board to the group, with a great bit of help from Shoban and Babu. With Cyclone threatening to cross the Chennai coast, the forecast was not good and hence people at home were apprehensive.

If the planning and scheduling was left to Babu, Shoban took over the onerous task of getting all unknown lists to the group. Thanks to his Herculean effort, we had a huge group to meet and have fun with. Though most guys could not make it due to family commitments and onsite responsibilities, it was a wonderful feeling to catch up with old times and pull one another for the fun we had during school days.

While most of us were almost the same as we had last seen, some quite in contrast to
One thing that came out of the entire thing is that people always cherish the school days like no other. School days were the best, agree all!!!!!!!!!!

The reunion was a lot different as we had people coming in from other sections. There was very little interaction between sections during school days, but on saturday, it was the camaraderie that comes with being a MCCian(My School).

It was really exciting to get to know that people made it from far and wide and the many who missed out, made it a point to call.

We have decided to have more of such meets in the near future. I m sincerely hoping that we would be successful in getting more guys into future reunions.

Life away from the hustle and bustle of Bangalore!!!!!!

Hi all,

I know it has been ages since I updated my blog. Was it sheer laziness, lack of things happening or just too much of things, I do not know. I ve been planning blogs and somehow never got the time to complete any.

The last few months have been months loaded with holidays, trips and vacations. End-August was the time for the much anticipated wedding of one of my closest buddies in Chennai. Here was someone, who was always the least interested in teenage stuff like crushes and flirtations and we thought, would be the last to tie the knot. Surprising, that he is one of the first. "Barking dogs, seldom bite" came to mind instantly. I never felt Chennai to be this hot, or maybe getting used to Bangalore weather made me feel so. 4 days in Chennai was sufficient to go visitng places and friends. However, still has little time to meet all as it was spread across two week days and people not being available during that time. That time was spent on meeting cousins.

Just fifteen days down the line, came a visit to Mysore. Another 4 day visit and this time, to take part in a family get together. Things again were getting exciting with two back to back vacations. Training took my Saturdays off, but gave the option of a comp-off on my terms and conditions. I knew it made sense to take maximum toll on this front.

The ultimate in this trail of vacation was rounded off with a trip to my native place, near Udupi. It has been 4 years since I went to my native place and I wanted to go there. I had gone to Mangalore last year, but did not get the time to go to my village.

This trip was for a week and the duration this time, away from work was for 9 days, 4 weekends and the weekdays. That was a pretty long time, away from work, after the 21 day vacation I had taken from work, in my previous company, just weeks before I quit. It was kind of a good experience, serene, green and away from the maddening Bangalore city life. It used to be pretty cloudy all day and would still not a drop of rain would fall on the ground. Pretty weird, and so much unlike Bangalore where we had rains almost on a daily basis, with or without cloudy days and nights. The week was spent with great fun, due to the break from the day-to-day activities back home. Also the lack of connectivity to my Hutch network was a blessing in disguise (Only Reliance and Tata Indicom work there).

It is really exciting to see the amount of development happening in our villages. If Bangalore is growing at an exceptional rate, other places are not far behind. You tend to realise or notice such things if you are away from that place for some time I guess. The fear of snakes and insects were pretty much there even now, but then that is the exciting part that I can go through any time. Walking through the fields after dark is a strict no-no. Never had the opportunity to see too many serpents in earlier visits, but this time was lucky to catch the glimpse of atleast a couple, a cobra and a common water snake. There is a charm in living in the world of the natural. You tend to appreciate life better. It was difficult to leave that place and come back to Bangalore, but then I guess staying there would bore us more. It would be better to frequent villages sometimes, rather than make a living there. Maybe post-retirement should be fun, with not too much to worry about.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

A Great Fortnight

One word to sum up the previous fortnight - Incredible.

My best friend, my cousin was getting married. We share so many things in common. Star signs, birthyears, likes, dislikes and habits. It all started on sunday when there was this Mehndi function. All but the grandparents were dancing like crazy. I did not realise the pain of dancing for close to 3 hours, until the next day morning and I had to go to work. Bunking office was not an option as I had already taken leave for the wedding.

Going to work for a couple of days seemed the most painful job in the world. The thought of the impending vacation for another few days brightened my thoughts, though.

The week started on a hectic note, with my team being put through a totally new set of activities. Each of us felt like fish out of water. I was happy that I did not have to sustain this for long, atleast for the first week as I was going on leave, a good three days. The leave was long overdue and this was the first time that that work was getting tedious. The remaining three days were both hectic and enjoyable. Running around to get things working and making sure that the arrangements are in place. No wonder, there is so much to a wedding than meets the eye. Friday was relatively calmer as we had nothing to do. Come saturday and then we had to go off again.

I was feeling nervous. appearing for a Certification for the first time. It was not only the question of the hours lost in preparing but also the monetary loss that would accompany, if I flunked. Lucky me, I got through and I am a certified MCP (Windows 2003 Server). I felt on top of the world. It gives me the confidence of more certifications in the days ahead. Hopefully I can put them across successfully as well.

The week after that was equally rewarding, though it was a relatively cool week - workwise. Harsha and Praveen suggested in one of the MSN chats a Xperdian meet and we thought that we could meetup on saturday. Plans were afoot for months together, but nothing concrete materialised and they were always going awry with the long pending Team Xperdeus meets and we thought we could meet up and not plan up. No planning and no ideas.

And mighty surprises were awaiting us. From the Fantastic Four(Naveen, Harsha, Praveen and Mush), there were quite a few. We made our way to RR on Church street and when the people in-charge of seating wanted to know the numbers so that they can set the table up, we were apprehensive as to how many would actually make it. Eight was the tentative number we could tell them. Anitha, Pradeepa, Jayashree , Harsha and I, occupied the seats and ordered lunch.

Praveen, whose way of telling people where he is, is to say "I am at a traffic signal". You ask him which one and he has no idea. Somehow, he found his way there.

We were joined by Dot and Anu who came straight from office. After all it is not only the fantastic four plus jayashree who always thought they represented Team Xperdeus. We were soon joined by Mush and his better half Harish. Luckily for us, the next table was still empty and we asked them to merge the tables. Deepa joined us last and then Bindhu was there too (not for lunch). What a suprise???She was, like Dot and Anu was there only to meet us. After a hearty lunch, with the achievers Dot(Best TL), Praveen (Best ST - DMOQ (Simply terrible - didn't meet our quality)) and Harsha (Star of the month), we set off for another of the common Mav meets to Coffee Day.

Harish and I wanted to push off early than usual as we did not expect anyone else to join for the meet. We stayed back for Vinny Honey(Vincy, for some) and thought that a movie would be a good idea. Rafeeq met us on the rooftop near Symphony. Pot-to to Not-to smoke , he has changed into an Angel. Halfway through "Mr. and Mrs. Smith", poor Vinny's nemesis came to haunt him. He was cold-struck. He had to drop me home and I felt goodof not having to sit through the movie.

Saturday was indeed great as I had met up with a cream of my friends all in a single day.

Not too many fortnights have been as happy and exciting as the one just gone by.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Scenic, Beautiful Mangalore

Hi all,
I was thinking about a topic to blog but did not find one till date. Found inspiration from Pavi (happy), Mush (Horror flick) and Niru's senti blogs and thought maybe I should put something down as well.

Lemme go back a couple of months and relate the story from then onwards. A long pending trip to Mangalore was in the offing. It was planned some time back, but a new job kept that plan in abeyance for some time, until I could find more time to make trips to Mysore and within a month to Mangalore. The Mysore trip was exciting and fun while it was more of a spiritual trip to Mangalore.
Why did I go to Mangalore??? Though I believe in god, I really don't see the necessity to go to temples. I hardly ever visit temples. There are exceptions to every aspect and I found my exception in a temple named Gurupur, near Mangalore.. which for some strange reason egged me to visit. My aunt was pleasantly surprised when I volunteered to accompany them to the temple. I ve always enjoyed a trip to Mangalore since childhood, for the greenery and the crystal clear water bodies around that place. Hopping from one temple to another, frequently checking the cricket scores (Indo - Pak series was going on then) at roadside shops, we reached the city in the evening.
I ve never been to the beach in Mangalore. what a shame.....Since we had some time before our departure to Bangalore, we thought we would visit the beach. I called up Nitin, my best friend from CVG, who is currently in Infy, Mangalore and asked him to come over to the beach. And he had to come almost 40 Km, as he stays a bit away from the city. Traveling by bus around Mangalore is an experience in itself (it seems that the min speed is 60 KM) and Nitin reached there very soon.

Since it was pretty crowded in the beach, it was tough to trace people. He called me on the cell and asked me where I was. Since I could not pinpoint my location, Nitin in his own way asked my to raise my hand, the left one and then the right and then asked me to wave forward and backwards. I was following his instructions involuntarily and making a fool of myself until my sister and cousins pointed out that I was acting crazy and others were looking at me. Nitin, the brat....has not changed and I was very embarrassed....for once becoming the bakra....Nitin is known for his pranks among friends and I felt that I was pulled into one of those without me realising it.
Met him after such a long time and it was really exciting to share a moment with a close friend after so long. He is enjoying his job and it felt good to share news on either side. After all Nitin was my cab mate and team mate throughtout his stay in CVG and my fore runner in my present job. Time passed like lightning and then it was time to leave. I was blaming Mother earth for travelling at 1666 km/hr for the first time. The weather is Mangalore was pretty hot, with high humidity levels and we were in for a shock with the mercury touching 42 that day. Reminded me so much of the hot and sticky days in Chennai, where the seasons were hot, hotter and hottest.

After a couple of hectic days of travelling, we reached bangalore on Sunday and went for a game of cricket. Donno why I decided to go and play cricket after a tiring trip....but play I did. It was a wonderful feeling, wielding the bat after so many years, fielding in the slips and bowling a few donkey drops. After a couple of hours in the hot sun, out bodies would take the load no longerand we decided to come back home. I could not get up until evening and i could feel the pain in every joint in my body. The pain and the time were really worth it and I am seriously planning another trip soon.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Who is a friend??

Who is a friend??
One question that I have pondered all my life with very little success. Though the terminology may be pretty common, it still has a greater meaning. I know not, what it means to others, but for thyself it means so much more than a mere companion and a soulmate. And what best, than to have so many companions. People who know me would know that I am a happy-go-lucky PJ master, Kadi mannan (PJ king in tamil) and so on and so forth. Why am I bragging about this in a blog on friendship....well, people might as well know the other side of this and what transformed me into one.

During my primary school days, I had one friend in all. A friend, no less; someone who would nod for whatever I said and did. Someone who would never ever question my actions and thoughts. I had another friend who ceased to be one, the days we had a fisticuff and left me bleeding on my forehead. I was forced to see friendship, in someone who stood by my side. In my fifth class, came along another good friend. As soon as he arrived at school, people were talking about his great academic records. For the first time in my school life, I felt insecure. Was it because I was feeling the pressure of staying the topper in class. Or was it simply that I was being jealous of a newcomer. If they looked upon me for Debate and Quizzing, they started to have this new guy for Poetry and singing/dancing. I felt that god was being unfair to me here. How could there be someone who could turn to be a rival to me.

When I got to know this guy personally, my thoughts and actions took a turn for the better. I was always cribbing that I do not get what I wanted. Being the monitor of the class, I was previleged to complain to the class teacher. In one such case, this guy did something wrong and that gave me an opportunity to make him feel who the boss is. I went to my class teacher and
complained about it. I even recommended that he be asked to bring his father for this slip. When my teacher told me about his difficult life and how he was surviving against all odds inspite of losing his parents at such a young age, I could not react at all.

His story somehow moved me so much, and I felt that here was someone who is resilient inspite of the odds. Our friendship blossomed from compassion and were indeed great to be together during that year. What an inspiration he was to all of us in class. He was always someone I drew inspiration. Things would however change soon and I would soon get into one of the bigger schools in Chennai. When I went to check with my wonderful little friend's status, he had moved elsewhere, as his brother got transferred. How I cherish those days and how much I miss him. For someone whom I knew for hardly a year, he left indelible marks in the lives of everyone at school. How some people leave their footprints in our lives in such a short duration of time.

Then came along another friend, whom I had known since childhood and we became very thick friends very soon. We are family friends stretching across 3 generations. Being in the same class and being just a street away helped too. Somehow over the years I had got into the habit of having single friends, someone with whom I would be close and the rest hi-bye types. This childhood friend of mine taught me a lesson or two. I would thank him for what I am today, because if not for him, I could have been still hanging out with individuals as ever. I would not have found myself part of groups and gatherings that I m very much part of.

Reminds me of George Micheal

"Time can never mend.....careless whispers of a good friend"

Sarcasm apart, this one proved to me what it meant to have a single friend. You lose that friend and you do not have too many options. The reasons for the breakup could be manifold but the bottomline is that your feeling of friendship towards someone may not necessarily be the same for others. He showed me that friendship is not something that you ask, but something that you need to give. When he broke my heart one day, saying that my friendship meant very little to him, comparing it to someone else's, whom he hardly knew for a year, I was shell-shocked. I could not digest the fact for months together. I am still not sure as to what made him think that way. How could he say that and the least that was expected were such harsh words from a trusted childhood pal. I was very demanding with him and maybe that was something that pained him more than anything else. I sat down and started thinking why am I finding this hard to accept. Was I expecting something in return from my beloved friend. Was I being selfish? Isn't friendship supposed to be without terms and conditions? Maybe I was faulty on that count, expecting too much. I made a self-analysis, trying to find out within myself. Am I to be blamed for the mess. Was he the guilty party in the entire episode.

My inner mind told me that rather than find fault with others, it was better to introspect. I spoke to many people regarding this and the common opinion was that I needed to forget this move on. Afterall, he is not the only friend(should I say that..) in the world. I made a very consious effort to get more friendly with people. It is easy to set rules, but very difficult to follow them yourself. I m not projecting that I am perfect here but then life teaches so many things and we should ideally work towards weeding out the unnecessary ones to make our lives better. We have patched up as friends, but it can never be the same again.

That single episode indeed changed the way life personifies itself. From a shy, introvert to an outspoken and bizarre creature the transformation was incomprehensible. Maybe it was destined to be that way. I have learnt to live with it. I am happy that I am having so many friends now that it becomes near impossible to make time for everyone. I have moved on and
things have luckily moved in the right direction. Friends since then have been great, I have started expecting less and things have started falling into place like a Jigsaw. If I had realised this earlier, maybe things might have turned out differently.

The inspiration to write this blog on friendship came from the fact that this month had been lucky for me. Friends, who were out of touch from School, College and my workplaces have suddenly become accessible. Thank the internet for this or my own extra efforts(or is it???), it has indeed been a fruitful month so far, atleast with my find-your-old-friends project. The
saga continues as I use every option to go in search of more friends.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Ding Dong Bell.......How times change.....

Hi folks,

I know it has been a while since I got the time to update everyone on the happenings from my side. If it was the lack of content to write about all these weeks, then I found my hands full in the following week and did not find the time to blog. In the weeks that followed, I ve got plenty to share about.

The last few weeks had plenty to offer. It was fun going to Sankey tank the other Saturday with my cousins. It was my first boating trip inside Bangalore. Being just 5 km from my house, I don't know how I missed going there all these days. I can tell you it was real fun. I am looking forward to being there more often in the days to come.

It was kind of adventurous, as we found a couple of Watersnakes(Anaconda-style) wading through the still waters of Sankey Tank. It was scary as they slithered near our boat. It was kind of eerie and exciting at the same time. Most of you know my aversion to animals as such.

The following was a dream weekend. Met my own fellow Mavs...on Saturday....There were quite a few of them there that Saturday evening....Even Zaroo bhai.....who makes it to CD once in a Green Moon, was there.....We promised zaroo that we would be regular to Coffee Day hereafter(Look at the Irony...Zaroo Asking us to be regular).

The next day was also equally exciting and fun. My floor team Xperdues met for lunch....Though most of the people who promised to make it...did not.... It was fun meeting all my old friends after such a long time. Others has missed out on the good times..I would say....

This week again started on a good note. Took a couple of days off from work to attend my Previous manager's wedding in Mysore.

My trip to Mysore was a triple take, as I combined the wedding with an anniversary and a new company inauguration. I do not know how four days flew.

Back to work at Bangalore and hoping that the week would be just as funny and enjoyable as it had been in the last fortnight.
Catch ya all soon.
Hope I get both the time and the content to blog soon

Saturday, January 08, 2005

What a rollicking start to the new Year

Hi all,

What a week it was with loads of fun. I had an office party at Sunny Valley and it was real fun. Lots of games, events, dancing, performances, music troupes, singing and what not.

The party were really sensational and we enjoyed every bit of it. It brought memories of 21 December, 2004 when we were literally dragged from the party and made to sit for hours without calls. Brought happy memories of the fights that Neel used to have with our manager, the animated examples and all. They have promised more such parties in the months to come. So more reasons to look forward to in the months ahead.

The number "Hotel California" reminded me of good old days at CVG. and more numbers like "Summer of 69" set the ball rolling for the evening. It brought back happy memories and the time we had in training?

People here are in awe about our multi talented maverick group. One of them has a big crush on Harish, after seeing your pics in (Now you know why i keep asking you for the Nandi hills photos). Another is a big fan of Musheer's Poems and People think that they have to reach another level to understand Niru's blogs.

Also got some good news from a friend of mine, Harsha from CVG, who is moving out to a better job. All the best to you man.

that is it for the weekly report