Sunday, August 30, 2009

Remembering the past

I was in my school, when I tasted my first Bhel puri. Down south we never had such dishes made. It is the speciality of Mumbai, a dish that very much belongs to Mumbai. It felt nice very nice.

I think it was my dad who first spotted this shop near Andheri Station. Once in a while we used to go there to have bhel puri. It tasted divine. I remember even during college days I used to stop by this shop to have it. The guy who prepared it was so fast in doing the procedure of mixing things that he could do more than 3 bhel puris in less than a minute. It was totally a spectacle to watch him perform this task with such speed and accuracy.

The Guy!!

After my college days; and through first job, I somehow lost touch to this place. I just could not find time to go and have this majestic piece of snack made with astounding timing and taste. Not that I did not have Bhel after that. I did have, but nothing like this place.



Few days back, when I was chatting with my friend, this place popped up. Without any hesitation, I told him that we should go to this place. It was almost 5 years that I had not been to this place. My dad used to bring home bhel often from this place. But I had never been to this place for a long time.

I made time one evening and went to this place which is no where in the way to my home or office. We finally reached the place and saw the same buzz of people queuing to buy it. The same guy was standing there with his two new subordinates at work, preparing bhel puri at the rate of knots. The Bhel tasted the same after so many years. It sure gave me a déjà-vu feeling rolling back all those years.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Unfathomable Forlorn

How do people look at you? How do people rate you? What happens when someone you think things of you better acts differently than you think they should have? Some don't care what others think about them. But some do care a lot. I should say, I am somewhere in between.

There are times when impressing someone will help you better. The ways to impress remains a major task to understand for many. For some it comes pretty naturally. These are the guys, people envy. They say sometimes impression cannot be created in a flash. It takes rather mammoth steps to devour and fathom the insurmountable task of impression. Time as it happens always, plays the vital role in climbing to some one's heart.That's the reason, may be finding a loved one is almost very difficult. The people we meet on everyday basis never get impressed with our looks. May be if you are dressed like a hippie they will notice you but never do they get impressed. The amount of time you spend with someone and frequency of meeting them plays a real vital role in creating an impression.

Everyone wants to create an impression somewhere or the other, they might not agree but that is all inbuilt and involuntary. Many would say, why do you do it to impress someone. "Do it for yourself, things will happen". Does that happen in today's world. Well not really. It is a nice advice to give, but to follow I doubt. After a careful needle and thread action to create a potential impression base, when the cracker jack tail end action comes, of someone expressing about yourself, it is always a surprise and gets a mickey out of all of the efforts put in.

Off late, such concerning circumstances have beaten the day light out of my solar sails. Things I thought would work out and thought people would understand me; like the "don't try to impress" way..... Now I feel, I should have tired impressing. But I guess, I was proved unimpressive with my "Do it for yourself way"..... Getting to know things about you from someone else and something which is not as per you expect it to be, is quiet an aghast feeling.

Friday, August 21, 2009

A new blog

I have started a new blog, just to learn how my photographs improve over the time. I am planning to update this blog with all the impromptu images I take with my new camera.

When you get bored of reading what I write, you can just go through this blog.

The link would be http://lanandsnaps.blogspot.com/

This new blog is dedicated for my photography!! :) :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

More DSLR snaps

Hey guys, these are some cool snaps I experimented. They can be better in the future!! :)

Sunday, August 16, 2009

LAN's day out

What a day!! It was awesome, totally convincing. I could not have planned it more than this. I had registered for a workshop on Digital SLR camera working and basics of photography. I got up late in the morning. I thought of giving this workshop a slip. But I had already payed 500 bucks for it. It was at Atria mall. I had to travel almost an hour to reach there. Something urged me to go. I wanted to checkout the Canon lens on display there. It was a very big showroom.

I was late by 20 mins. The workshop session had just started and I got my goodie bag (Will get back to this one afterward). I was surprised to see so many people interested in the workshop. Almost 30-40 people had turned up on a Sunday(amazing). There were foreigners, slightly old uncles and aunties, young people. It was a mixture of ages. All were driven by only one word actually "Photoholic". I don't know if there is a work in English, but it sure is an invented word. All of them were either photographers are people who were very much interested in photography.

The lady instructor had command over the subject. She knew how to take the workshop and to what extent. I was delighted to learn the information she gave on lenses. The type of lenses, aperture, shutter speed, ISO and lot of other things which were very useful for me to decide on a lens to buy.

Every single person in that room, had brought a camera. I had not taken any, as I did not have a DSLR then. DSLR cameras have been on my mind for a long time. I did a lot of research regarding which camera to buy and had zeroed on one. Canon 1000D a digital SLR of which the price had dipped just a month ago. I did not take any snaps during the session. I was so indulged in the session that it never crossed my mind. The workshop was coordinated and done meticulously by Zoomin.com. Very professional I should say. The coffee and biscuits with it was icing on the cake.

After the workshop, on my way back home, I got down at Dadar and went to JJMehta and Sons store. It is a well known camera shop in Mumbai. I bought the Canon 1000D with one extra zoom lens. I started clicking some snaps at the shop and then came home and started clicking. I took some amazing shots. Now I will leave you to marvel these excellent shots. :) :)

Oh yeah the Goodies I got; check out the snap: (free magazines)


Check out the cool camera man!! :) :)


Some snaps from my camera: This is the best part :)

This snap was taken by the shop keeper. He did get a good smile out of me!! :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

LAN and full blood brother

Thinking about the past that I have left behind, the people whom I have loved and hated, I laugh at myself. The way I behaved with people, the way they reacted at my attitude, my actions. Thinking about all this, tells me how foolish I have been then all my life. How silly I was when I fought for pity things in life. The one person I could never give up a fight was my own brother.

With him I have always had a love-hate relationship. It has been more of a hate than love I should say. Being just one year younger to me, he will never give up a fight with me. These fights might go on for a week may be a month. That's how brothers are I guess. Growing up we have become increasingly away from each other, just to avoid a fight I would say.

One fine day, I started to wonder about such increasing rift and gaps among us. I don't have an answer as the hatred has become hard coded in him. I do love him for the way he is. Not that I don't hate him, I hate him a lot too. After I wrote this much, I started to drift away and thought I will not continue and thrash this blog. But I have taken it a resolve to write something about him.

On 26th July some years ago, Mumbai came to a stand still. He had been to college and could not make it home that night because of the deluge.It rained so heavily that day that it has ever rained before. Everywhere there was water. Mumbai was flooded, totally creamed. The mobile network went down. So we could not contact him. Our landline number was working. But Mumbai to Mumbai calls were down only STD was working. My dad was not around, he was out of station. It was havoc. We reaffirmed among our self that he would stay at his friends house.

He was stranded, he spent the night at a police station. The next day tried to catch a bus and could not find his way home till late in the evening. I was home could not do much. I could not see my mother praying for his safe return. The thoughts in my mind were asking me to do something fast. I decided then that I will go to his college somehow and search for him.

The landline numbers were up by the next day afternoon. It was almost 5:30 pm. I told my mom that, don't worry come what may, I will come home with my bro. The frequency of bus for Andheri station from my place was very less, understandable after the deluge. All the people who were stranded the day before had reached home. I walked all the way to station. It took me half an hour to reach there. It was not raining that heavily. Infact by that time the local trains started running, but they were running only from Andheri to Bandra. Bandra was the place his college was.

Picture: This is a street where we used to play cricket with badminton bats and shuttle cocks. Interesting combination of sports i should say!! :) Once while playing normal cricket, I scored 206 runs. The rule was, if you hit a ball on the terrace of a building you scored 100 runs :) I hit twice and ran 6 runs. :) :) My brother was so upset with me on that day!! He has also had his winning days, I can never forget this road.

Before I entered the station, I rang home and asked mom if there was any calls from him. I got a negative feedback. With high hopes and hoping against hope I got to the station platform. For some reason, I wanted to ring home back again. But there was no bloody telephone on that platform. So I had to cross the bridge to another platform. I did and called home back asking if there was any calls again. This time my mom shouted back on the phone. I have never heard such a happy voice from her. My brother had called. He was also in Andheri station.

By god's grace I spotted him getting down a bridge, he was damn tired. I took him to a "Bhel puri" stall first and bought him one. (It is his favorite) Then we luckily got a bus and took him back home to see my mom's cry hugging him. It was a reunion of its kind. I do love him sometimes, you see. I thanked god so much that day. Next day paper read more than 150 people died in this deluge. It was horrific experience.

Since then it has been a roller coaster ride among us. Two days back there was a cricket game between Pakistan and Sri Lanka (T20). We both watched the Sri Lankan chase. We were discussing and marveling the game. It was like we were 14-15 again. The child in us does vanish as we grow up. The love for thy sibling matures but we don't show it often. Ego checks in, it sometimes creates a rift. I am not saying I am perfect and my brother is at fault. I am also as much part as he is. It is such days in life which we can savor in our countless GB database of brain. After all brothers will be brothers.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The specs story

When I was in my 8th standard, I tired to show some tricks to a baby boy. I closed my left eye and open and blinked my right. Nothing was wrong; when I changed it to my left eye, I felt something uneasy. I did not think much then. This happened again, this time I was looking through a key hole. It was clear to me that I was not able to see clearly with my left eye. When I close my right eye, it was blurred.

When we look with both eyes, the best image from both the eyes is captured and transmitted to brain. The brain checks and super imposes the better image. So my right eye was taking the bulk of vision. Even though my left eye vision was blurred, because my right eye was normal, when I used to look normally, everything was very clear.

I took my mom to a ophthalmologist. He checked my eyes and told me that there is a power problem with my left eye and it can be corrected by spectacles. From then onwards, till now I am wearing it. The left eye had a complicated number and it was not the normal power lens. It was a cylindrical lens. But my power has slightly increased initially till I got the exact power.

A spectacle is a style statement know a days. Getting a nice pair sometimes is very difficult. I was thinking about a 70s style glasses for a long time. Last Sunday I decided that the time has come for a change of specs. I went by the optician and got a cool specs for a very low price. Nothing like fashion at a low price tag.

The professor look I should say!!:) :)

Sunday, August 9, 2009

100

Not bad at all. I started this as just a time pass where I can say my blah blah. I have gained some fans on the way. I have written about things on various topics. As I look back on this blogspot, so many blogs have come and gone. This has been an amazing start to a place where I can call home online. I will keep thinking about thinks that come out of no where!! :) :)

For now, "Tonight we dine in Hell" :):)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I was flowered

August is always a month of festivals. I have to do lot of small work during such festivals at home. We have pooja at home. (If I would have said this at office, Mr. AB would have a raised eyebrow or two, useless humour) Usually I get some small jobs like cleaning here and there. My mom surely knows my area of expertise. So she gives me some work which I hate!! :( :(

But as the work I do eventually goes for God, I have no complaints. This time there was a bag full of flowers what we got the other day. Some of it got spoilt as it may have been the flowers from day before. The trouble was, we cannot use the spoilt flowers. The even bigger trouble was the size of the flower; it was jasmine.

I was given the job to separate out good flowers from spoilt ones. It looked very simple. I almost thought, wow that's something I can do. It was almost 3 -4 kg I guess. I started doing it one by one. Then I realised if I do it like this, it will take me 4 days to complete. I rate my brain to be very very bad when it comes to logic, but I am a quick learner. I checked out a logic to work on. Instead of taking out good flowers from the pack, I thought of taking spoilt ones out. As the number of flowers which had gone bad seamed less as compared to the good ones.


This I should have done a long time back. Now i decided to take handful of flowers and pick the spoilt ones from it and then hurray I have a lot of good flowers in my hand. This seems simple, but I started dividing it, I had to dynamically change my logic. Something went wrong, I was picking lot of spoilt flowers now. The logic could hold only for some time. What had happened was the number of spoilt flowers were indeed more than it seemed to be. And as the division went on the proportion of bad flowers increased exponentially as the visibility factor of bad flowers shoot up the dynamic curve of bad vs good.

I changed my logic and now started picking good ones from a handful of mixture. I had gained so much mastery in division of bad and good flowers that Adam smith would be pround of. Sorry Adam smith is associated with Division of labour. This is called concept mistake not spelling mistake. Coming back to division of flowers, I was almost through with the division. As at one point, the number of bad ones were more than good ones. Now my logic worked with utmost efficiency. I know lot of people will check who Adam smith was after this. Very bad very bad.

The human brain is very calculative. It makes a logic for even things like this, which we don't even think of. It creates complex logic very easily. It learns very fast, in one way of working does not work, it decides and defines another way. The complex logic of brain has been a essence of discussion for long now. Scientist have some discovery over it. But the lump some large brain eludes a lot of them. I don't have the brains to think about my brain. I can just shout at someone and say "Don't eat my brain".

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Changing the sacred thread

"Malakara" shouts a guy who sits in front of the agni homa. A scared fire that burns which is used for pooja with a desire. Agni Homa is used to enhance the effects of japa. Agni is said to be the mediator between humans and gods. A small brick square wall is built and small well cut dry wood mostly from mango tree is used for buring. Mostly ghee is used to enhance the fire. A Hindu dictionary on Homa says: "A sacred ceremony in which the Gods are offered oblations through the medium of fire in a sanctified fire pit, homakunda, usually made of earthen bricks."

This guy in front of the fire pouring ghee into the fire at every interval when he finishes a wonderfully recited Sanskrit rhymed poetic verse. He pours the ghee into the fire with a rather extravagant hand moment and raises his voice at the climax of it all. He looks no older than 45, with a big beard and a spectacle which is hanging on his nose almost at the edge of it. In between the mantras he recites he does give out a boyish smile and says something humours to keep all of us rather awake. The place we had been was a secluded places, away from the busy city. The time seemed to have stopped long before here. The building appeared very old and so was the setup for pooja. We were asked to wear something called "Dharba" which is nothing but dry leaves (dry grass) twisted to wear on your fingers.

I was in a Hindu ceremony, to change my "poonal" or "genevara" they call in kannada. My mom woke me up 7 in the morning. Every year in the year of "sravan", we have to change the scared thread, that we wear across of our body. Any brahmin hindu will know this, as it is a rather laborious procedure, not just wearing the new one; and removing the old one. "Malakara" means to wear the thread like a "mala" ( mala is a garland that is given as respect in cermonies to important people present.) Wearing the scared thread in malakara, was to do some rituals and say some mantras.




The pontiff now shouts, "Sabya", which means to get back the thread in the initial position. The pontiff signs each and every action we are to perform. As I sit with my sleepish eyes closing at different intervals. Suddenly the pontiff shouts, take tulsi in your right hand. My eyes open with alarming shiftiness. The pontiff's subordinates distribute tulsi. Then there comes something which looks like curd. We are asked to hold it on our right palm. The pontiff says some sacred lines and asks us to swallow the white mass before the our teeth can touch it. It was sour and was curd mixed with half cooked rice.

Then comes the biggest task of all the above, to open the poonal from its closed state to the open state. If not done in a certain way, missing one thread here and there will land you in a pickle with the thread all tied haphazard. Then to get it to the open state, you will need to out source it to someone. Luckily I could open it and helped my brother too. Then comes the mantra, which brings lot of smile to my face.

"! Yagnopaveetham paramam pavithram prajapatheryasahajam purasthad Aayushyamagryam prathimuncha shubram yagnopaveetham balamasthu thejah!!"

That means wear the new thread. Married guys are to wear two threads, hence to repeat this mantra again. Then comes the mantra to remove the old thread. The procedure ends with giving the pontiff dakshna, and also buring dry leaves. These leaves are nothing like a normal leaf; very long and very small. It looks like dry grass, a special grass I should say. We did have upma and tea after all this. I have never tasted such a nice upma before. I felt something in me that reinstated who I was and where I belonged to. There are somethings which we are brought up doing, which has not only become a part of you, but defines whom you are and where you belong.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Out of my first coma

I got a mail which told me about the horoscope of the coming month, which I had subscribed some year or odd ago. I had to click on a link, to get the complete horoscope. The detailed one which gives details about my love life, job, etc ... Something sparked an interest in me to see the horoscope for the rest of the year. They did have a link to check it. There were all the signs just in front of me.

The title above it said something which was slightly different as compared to what I have seen. It said "Moon signs", which was different to what I have seen so many days on paper. What we normally check in the news paper column is the Sun sign. This new epithet confused me. One link said "New user, find which moon sign you are". I had to fill a small form. It said birth date and birth time. Now I did not know what my birth time was. I knew that i was born on a Sunday.

I had to ask my mom about it. That Sunday almost 25 years ago was not as cheerful as it sounded for my mom. I was a cesarean baby. My birth had some complications. The food pipe that took food to my stomach got tangled pretty badly. After a long battle of survival for almost 8 hours, I made it a point to say everyone "Hi guys I will not give up". The nurse did shout at my mom's ears saying "Its a boy". My mom was unconscious but she could make out something.

I cried with full throat and indicated my arrival in this world, which is still the same labyrinth like it was then. I did fight really hard in the very beginning to survive. Like they say, Survival of the fittest. I am still to get fit now a days though. Seems like I was very fit then. If something would have gone wrong that day, this blog would not have come today.

The life which we get is an amazing gift. Every single day we live on. We don't bother a lot about many things. The birth, the character, the every breath you take, is a gift you have. Live it wisely as you wish. When you wait for a train, if it is late by 10 mins, we flinch. Not many get the point that we are 10 mins more mature and wiser. The experience we gather today is something for tomorrow.

The entanglements I face today in life, is nothing as compared to the one I faced that threatened my very survival. I am very happy to have stood here today, to see the smile on my mom's face day in and out. I wanted to finish of saying "Thats my life"; instead I think I will say "Thats my birth". Today will be yesterday soon, so enjoy today and enjoy its memories tomorrow. Don't forget to take a picture today. It will help your remind things tomorrow. You see, picture memory.

yeah yeah!! thats me!! dont go by the dressing!! :) :)