Monday, November 13, 2006

Will anything ever change?

In the continually changing world, will anything change with the existing arranged married system??? Probably not.. but I needed a vent-out! So, here goes.

Being a single girl with her parent's on the lookout for a prospective groom, I have to say its worse than slim-pickings out there! Not because we are choosy. But because we (rather I) had anticipated some changes in the society and the general outlook in the people. But what I see is NULL. Nothing has changed. Probably almost everything is just the same as it was when my mom or aunt got married about 20 odd years ago, more worse now than ever!

Irrespective of what the guy does, how well behaved he is, how educated he is, how much he earns, how he looks, etc, almost all guy's parents want a beautiful (but who isn't too into her looks), well-educated (though she has to be less educated than the guy), well-earning (though she must be willing to quit her job if the family needs it and of course SHOULD be earning less than the guy), who can probably cook well (although cooking rajma, fancy salad, anything Italian/Mexican doesn't count, nothing healthy, everything fried traditionally in oil and made traditionally), sing (though during later phases they say they don't like noise of any kind) and what not!!!

Oh, and worst of all, the whole process is based off of horoscope HOPEFULLY (probably) written right based off of the correct time of birth or whatever... and the exchange of pictures. And here again, I have come across several cases where out of fear of GOD-KNOWS-WHAT, there is this big tug-of-war as to which side has to send the first picture. And whoever sends it (which about 70% of the time happens to be the girl's side... well, lets face it.. the status of the guy's side is still higher up, according to them!!!! ) is just isn't good enough for the other side. If it happens to traditional picture, she isn't modern enough and if she send a slightly modern picture, she isn't the right family-oriented person!!!!

Of course, there are exceptions and a few scapegoats are seen on both sides of the fence. I guess its just difficult for these scape goats to meet when there are hoards of other scavengers in the midst! I was definitely not trying to hint anything to anyone or hurt anyone. I am sure there's another side to the story where the girl's side is greedy and utterly unyielding and is on the poach-like look-out for guys too!! But I don't have to write about it and so I didn't!!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Why to bother?

Read this article below recently and it flicked something in my head.

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package. "What food might this contain?" The mouse wondered - he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.

Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning. "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."

The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The pig sympathized, but said, "I am so very sorry Mr Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."

The mouse turned to the cow and said, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you, but it's no skin off my nose."

So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer's mousetrap-- alone.
That very night a sound was heard throughout the house -- like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught. The snake bit the farmer's wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital and she returned home with a fever.

Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main ingredient. But his wife's sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.

The farmer's wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral; the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them. The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.

So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn't concern you, remember -- when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk. We are all involved in this journey called life. We must keep an eye out for one another and make an extra effort to see that mousetraps all over the world whether in the shape of nuclear bombs, dictators or famines are thrown out: So add your voice and start being bothered by what's happening around..!

Is this whats happening in the world and are we reacting like the mouse or the other animals?

Friday, October 27, 2006

Not everyone should be allowed...

Not everyone should be allowed to SING.. especially good old all-time favorite Carnatic songs..

So, this is what happened. A couple of weeks back, my friend had invited me to his place for dinner. To give an intro to this friend - he WAS a purist, most religiously narrow-minded, pooped on anyone who talked about love and such stuff, a class topper and smart guy. Then Murphy happened and this guy got a girlfriend - well, they are actually made-for-each other. They hooked up only after ensuring both were from the same religion, caste, subcaste, different gothram, appropriate natchatrams.. well, basically after taking care of all such trivia.

Anyhow, coming back to the subject, my friend's soon-to-be in-laws were visiting and he wanted to make AN IMPRESSION. So, he had invited a bunch of us to his place to dine with them. So, dinner happens. Then, the after-dinner talk happens - all yapping about the current affairs, Bush, immigration laws, .. well, the usual when a bunch of unknowns come together. Then, IT happened. My friend told his soon-to-be MIL that I had been learning Carnatic music and so sang well. Then, he told me that his MIL also sang well. Trying to make conversation with his MIL, I smiled and asked her to sing a song. She was probably just waiting for those words - she pounced. She started singing. OMG - even the evilest of the evil should not suffer my fate on that day. She sang my favorite song - Yamuna Kalyani "Maitreem Bhajatha.." in her deep, shrill voice. She actually didn't sing. She shouted the entire song. I didn't know how to react. It was, without even the slightest doubt, the worst ever I had heard. Oh, God.. I wanted her to stop. But didn't have the courage to tell her and of course she was elderly and I soooooooo wanted to respect her.

At the end, she said to me - "I am still learning". I didn't know if I was supposed to appreciate her effort of learning to sing at that age or what. Somehow, I managed some praises for her effort and got away from the place.

God, was it awful. There are some songs which some people sing better than others. But this was not one of that kind of songs. It was a delicate raga and it couldn't be massacred any worse. If only people could realize by themselves that some stuff aren't for them, then, I wouldn't have had to write this post!

PS: I do understand and accept that we do stuff for ourselves and shouldn't mind about other's opinions. But this was way over the hill!!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Stay in touch..

I realized how important it is to stay in touch with the rest of the world - family and friends, especially, all the single people out there. I now comprehend why my parents insist that I call them every night when I am out of town and possibly after every flight and all long drives!

My ex-boss has three sons. While two of them are married and well settled in the west coast, the last one is an architect in the east coast. He is single, stays alone and makes my boss worry about him a lot at times when he goes alone for hiking and such trips in various parts of the country! Then, a couple of months back this disaster stuck! The son was trekking somewhere in NJ and bcoz of sudden floods, was washed away. Everyone including my boss and his wife did not hear a word from him for a week or so. So, they drove to NJ to find his whereabouts and was dismayed to find his apartment intact and no signs of him being there for the last week or so. So, they contacted the authorities and a search was organized in the neighborhood and all the trekking areas nearby. They found his decayed body after a week, completely ruined and almost unrecognizable. IF ONLY, he had let everyone know where he was going or atleast not have gone anywhere just by himself!!

Death is inevitable but such ways of it are totally abnormal. So, do stay in touch with your close ones and be adventures but not overly!!!

PS: Sorry about such a mood-kill post.....just wanted to convey how brutal life(& death by extension) can be sometimes, not just to us but to numerous people around us!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

You never know....Part I

You never know where, how, in what way and why things would go wrong or become right...

A few months back, for a few days I was in Louisville, KY for a project. The entire project team stayed at the Hilton in the downtown. We all drove down to KY from different places and went to work in one van and come back to hotel everyday.

Anyhow, things are going on fine.. until the second day morning. Our van is missing....from the hotel parking lot.. we never even thought that this was possible.... it wasn't even a new SUV... just a Lexus 2005 model...silver colored...a couple of my colleagues wanted to go out that evening and so had left their camcorders, digital cameras (one of them is an avid bird watcher and so had left his tripod and stuff in the trunk of the van), a couple of IPOD's, a laptop,, it was kind of a major loss...we call 911, file complaints, talk to the hotel people and head of to work in two separate cars.... in the evening we come back to the hotel and the car is back.. my boss joked that 'someone probably just took a ride and then came back....u know, like trying a new car at the dealership'...but, when we look inside, all our stuff is missing... we called 911 again and the case was transferred to a different department..from auto theft to ordinary theft? After a lot of negotiations, we also got the cash value of the lost items from the hotel...:-).. so, my colleagues are going to get new camcorders, digital cameras, IPOD's...

Alas, I didn't leave anything in the car and so didn't get anything new... sometimes, it doesn't really pay you well for being a responsible person...:-(...

Friday, October 20, 2006

Diwali Reminiscence

Can't believe its already the fifth Diwali that I am missing, by not being at home in Madras!

But, instead of cribbing about it, I thought I will jot down some stuff that has happened on Diwali along the years!

** The best Diwali's have been after we got our dog. He is scared so much of crackers, noise and the whole Diwali thing. The fun starts weeks before Diwali when the first cracker is burst in the neighborhood. I wish I knew what exactly goes in his mind when he hears sound of crackers bursting. He goes wacko and starts running around the house like crazy, goes to the terrace, runs up and down the stairs and whatever comes in his way goes flying in every possible direction. So, during the season, we try to minimalize the things on his level so that everything stays out of his way when he gets a little unsecured or whatever. Then, on Diwali day he gets so confused when everyone wakes up early and mess up his sleep schedule. So, usually during the season, he hangs out with my dad almost all the time, (like a kai-kozhandhai) who calms him everytime there is some noise and tries to carry him around whenever he is too scared. The only good time he has during Diwali is up his nostril with the smell of Mysurpa,burfi and eatables prepared at home. He tries to stay in the kitchen as much as possible, especially when the ghee is being melted during the finishing stages of Mysurpa. :-). Oh, he also like the scrapes off of the Mysurpa pan and tries to get in line with me for the scrappy pieces!

** Sometime when I was in high school, my maternal grandparents used to live a couple of streets away in Madras. So, after the initial hub-bub of Diwali....the initial burst of energy and crackers, I took my uncle's scooty to visit them! Ofcourse I was never scared of driving on Diwali day. But this one time, with new dress and everything, I started driving and enroute, I drove over some kind of bomb(you know, the hydrogen or atom bomb cracker) and just as it burst, the tire went flat and I was thrown off the vehicle a few feet away on my face. I don't remember the complete aftermath. But I completely ruined my dress and probably loosened a tooth or two. But that didn't stop me from my destination. The scooty was still in good condition apart from a few paint rips! So, I went to my grandpa's place after all this and almost gave him a severe shock with bloody tooth and scratches all over! After that one incident, I don't think I EVER drove anywhere alone on Diwali day.

Wishing everyone a very HAPPY DIWALI!!!!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Berry-blasted Vendakkai Sambar

The company I currently work for has a whole bunch of projects for a firm that manufactures amino acids and in turn a variety of high-energy drinks, nutrition bars, protein/nutrition powder and such stuff. So, the client often sends us a box of the products. Being a new employee, I was given a bunch of the stuff early last week to get a feel for the manufacturing unit. A colleague was suggesting that since the protein powder was flavorless and tasteless, I could just add it to whatever I cook.

Taking her advise, later last week, when I was making Vendakkai Sambar, I thought about health,losing weight and such trivia and added scoops of the protein powder to the sambar. I left the stove in low flame and went to run some errands. After a while, I come back home to something I had not anticipated.

I come back to my apartment only to find the entire apartment smelling of berries. With the air-conditioner running, things came back to normal and so I didn't investigate the berry smell further. Then, when I actually started eating, I realized what had happened. The powder was tasteless. But it had been berry-flavored. When the powder is mixed with a drink or any other substance, whatever reaction occurs releases the berry flavor. :-). Although my sambar didn't taste any different, it smelt totally like berry. So,that's about the berry-blasted Vendakkai Sambar.

Talk about innovation and this way I got my protein and nutrition (from the dal/vegetables in the sambar). Ofcourse, the first time was just by accident and so doesn't actually count as an innovation. So, henceforth, I am going to try and add it to whatever I eat and maybe in awhile I will get used to the smell..... as long as I get the nutrition, the flavor should not matter. Right??

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

To Risk is TO LIVE

Couldn't resist these sensible words of William Arthur Ward.

To laugh is to risk appearing a fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach out for another is to risk involvement.
To expose feelings is to risk revealing your true self.
To place your ideas, your dreams before a crowd, is to risk rejection.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying. To hope is to risk disappointment.
To try is to risk failure. But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.

Those who risk nothing, do nothing, have nothing,
and become nothing.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

World with WOMEN

For the first time after a long time I am working with a whole bunch of women. I used to be the only (privileged) girl among my peers at work for the last two years. Now, since I joined a bigger firm, there's all these departments residing in the same office building and so a lot of women around - accounting, legal, sales and ads, payroll, HR, etc. So, the environment is kinda different than what I had gotten used to. Not a lot of conversation floating around with 'just' taxes, investments, Bush, Peyton Manning, cars and bikes. Especially in the cafeteria and break room, conversations are really weird - you know, good weird and not mundane. Now, I don't go to the break room often. But when I do go, I accidentally overhear stuff that gets me thinking.

Not being too much of a girly girl, I used to think people in accounting, rather women in accounting, payroll, etc were not too exciting like women engineers... but looks like I was wrong. There's this 40ish lady in accounting who comes to work in a Harley (you know, a motor bike) and so has all sorts of stories about that - how bike riders often don't like a woman to ride alongside with them in the Southern parts of the country, the accidents she has been thro' and such exciting stuff. Then, there's this HR lady who used to work for Ford and so has stories about various car manufacturers, how they try to bid and buy out people with patents for a better and efficient engines and other car parts, etc. Although she used to work just with HR, her stories have more life in them than whatever the newspapers tell about the layoffs at GM/Ford or elsewhere.

Ofcourse, amidst all this conversations, there's a little bit of gossip which goes around, talk about who's wearing what today, do the accessories really match the outfit, the whole ensemble, family and children and other worthwhile things.

World is definitely a more interesting place with "SOME" women!! Isn't it??

Update: Seeing beyond my limited vision (after going thro' the comments), I do agree that the world is a better place to live in bcoz of SOME (like ME.... grrr....) and not ALL women!!!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Well, I am almost back...

After about a three weeks of packing, moving, reporting to new job, going off-site in the first week, fighting with internet provider for speedy DSL, cribbing about the moving company to every known soul in new town, trying to get accustomed in the new city and all, I am basically back. Well..not quite, but almost!!!

New work place, new people and so I kinda have a lot of stories in stock to keep blogging for the next few weeks.... but things need to wait awhile....

So, well, I am almost back!!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Unlikely Residence

After a hectic week with too much to do in too little time following a week of just lazing around with nothing much to do, I am back to blogging!!

Amidst the process of relocating to a new city for a new job, my thought process was irked at the most unlikely time by an unknown person! The moving company had sent two African-American guys to pick up the stuff from my apartment today morning. It was early in the morning and so I offered them tea once they were done loading stuff to the moving van and doing some paperwork. One of the two guys, Mike was surprised. He started talking about how he likes Indian Chai, but not a lot of people are friendly. He went on and on about people, behavioral science, unionization of workers, communism, Marxism, Lutherism, how USA should be under military rule, how Cuba is thriving, Chinese government and various allied facts and figures. What surprised me was not just the extensive knowledge he had on the subject, but the thoroughness of his knowledge - with proof, quoting books and people, throwing in a few dates and numbers and making it all so casual and impressive!

So much for a moving guy! He should have probably been a member of some commission or some panel at the UN or advisory committee for some government somewhere in the world or be professing at some educational institution! Knowledge sometimes does reside at the most unlikely place!!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


Other than the general Hindu beliefs on religion and spirituality, I don't have a lot to say about karma and associated fundas.

My office is located as a suite in 6th floor in a 12-storeyed building. So, we share the elevators and corridors with several other businesses. There is this snotty, 50ish, well-dressed lady who is kind of haughty and never does the usual courtesy things - smile when passing in the corridor, hold the door when someone follows you thro the door, thank you's and please's - you know - just the usual. I tried to show this lady's haughtiness to my colleague one day, and my colleague happened to agree with me. Like this one time, I had come straight to work from the airport and so was pulling my luggage with one hand and had my laptop in a case on the other - and just assumed she would hold the door for me.... its not something out of ordinary..anyone will do it.. but to my dismay, she didn't. The door just was about to go bang on my face...when someone else ran and held the door. She started to bug me from then. A few weeks back, almost a similar incident happened.. except.. this lady was on the wrong side of the door and the door went banging on her face, probably breaking her nose and causing bleeding, etc!

My colleague and I were just stepping off the elevator when this happened. So, we immediately called for emergency security and all that! But after that, I started thinking and wondering if it was her Karma that led to all this!!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

What does it take?

Sometimes I feel annoyed and embarrassed when people show PDA disregarding the look in the faces of people around them. But in a few cases, I have found it to be endearing and makes me look forward (..... well, a little) to something in the future. The special case being really old couples...sometimes, someone has to push each of them in separate wheel chairs...they will still try to hold hands..or to the least, look at each other and smile fondly. I give complete courtesy to uncountable waiting times in the O'Hare International Airport ...longer the waiting time or layover is, more is the number of couples seen ...ofcourse, this is only if we look at the whole thing unconventionally and try not to ask too many questions or get into the legalities or judgements....

Like my colleague Jim and his wife - referred to as Jim Thatha.....since he is over 60 and looks his age. The first time, I met the couple (together) was during the office Christmas party last year. They looked really TOGETHER.....holding hands, smiling coyly at their age, being courteous to each other, laughing at each other's silly jokes, was nice to look at them. A few weeks later, I mentioned it to him that he and his wife looked good together... he said "we better look took us so many years"... two failed marriages + three kids for him and three failed marriages + five kids + several grandkids for her and then these two ended up together...

What does it take? What does it take to go on for 40-50 years like this and still be fond of each other....keep bickering, yapping stories, never growing tired of each other's company, put in all the effort and time needed to maintain such a state, ....... I guess there's no one finite answer to all this..right?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Height of blogging

I woke up early today morning and had a hearty laugh. Why? Because of the dream I had had! In very miniscule details I dreamt that I wrote a blog, spell-checked, previewed and published it. The blog itself was something I had been thinking about yesterday but haven't had the time to write yet. People commented on it (in my dream). I remember even the names of people who commented and what their comments were. Then, I wrote counter-comments. :-))

The dream itself is probably what some people had had before. But the details..... like the % value when publishing is in progress, the 404 error which appears in blogger sometimes... all this in detailed order.. was plain funny!!!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Charanya, her grandpa and three pigtails...

On the way to work, I pass two places which kindle my curiosity every single day. One is the doggy day care and the other is the children day care center.

Usually I see really cutesy puppies and dogs outside the doggy day care unhappily waiting to get inside the center and looking at their owners with almost tears in their eyes for deserting them to go to work. I keep ogling at them for awhile when I wait for the company shuttle. But today, something different happened. There was this really cute, porcelain-doll look alike, Chinese kid with three pigtails spurting out of her head crying outside the kids day care center with her mom. This brought back memories.

In Chennai, during late 1980's, we had rented a portion of our house to this couple with a girl. The girl's name was Charanya (probably same age as me - 7-8 years old in late 1980's) and since both her parents used to work, her grandpa came to take care of her everyday after school for a while. One peculiar quality that I hadn't seen anywhere after Charanya until today was her three pigtails, just like the Chinese kid. You know, the two usual on either sides that almost all girls used to do and one of the center of her head (uchhan thalai la). All the kids in the street used to make fun of her hair style but it never bothered her and it was especially cool for Chennai's summer heat. For some unknown reason I used to be fascinated by her hairdo, but never was brave enough to adopt the hairdo!

Charanya's grandpa was another peculiar character. During summer vacations, he used to live with them permanently and in the afternoons when the kids (5-6 of us) were really bored, he used to propose this one game "Scratch Thatha's back". While the rest of the kids dutifully scratched his back, Charanya and I used to devise new plans to avoid it. Then one day, we decided to put an end to the scratching and devised a master plan. The plan and its execution went very smoothly and we ended up freeing ourselves from ever having to scratch his back....... well, lets just say, instead of scratching with nails and fingers, his back had marks of scratches probably made of small hot black stones, which took a week or two to completely heal.

Well, we weren't little monsters.. so, ofcourse we went and apologized and made things right. But he never ever asked us again to scratch his back. I haven't heard of her since 80's and so I am sure she wouldn't be too upset about broadcasting this story!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Deceptive Appearances..

This morning I was supposed to pick up a colleague I have never met and then get to work. I have spoken to him over the phone a couple of times and he is a Puerto Rican. So, I had kinda imagined how he would look.. you know....Caribbean, Spanish..

We had decided to meet out in the parking lot of a building. Thinking I would be able to spot him out in the parking lot, I started. 7.15 am - the crowded parking lot and no sign of Jose. I tried to call him on his cell phone but his Puerto Rican number gave me a busy signal. I waited and waited.. the crowd weeded out.. 7.45 am.. only a handful of people in the parking lot.. a desi-looking 30ish guy, an American and the rest all were Chinks. No sign of a Caribbean guy. Then, at about 8.00 am, the desi looking guy got a phone call.. but his accent when he spoke on the phone was Spanish! That was Jose. I went and confronted him. He totally looked like an Indian. I would have never guessed that he was Jose unless he had talked with his accent. Finally I asked him, he was Indian looking and so I was misled... but how come he didn't approach me since I was the only Indian girl around. He replied, he thought my name sounded similar to Ariana and he was expecting a European or middle Eastern.... I was bowled!!

hmmmm.. anyhow, I would have never thought I would pass for a European or even a middle Eastern.... :-)). I always thought I looked like a typical South Indian girl for that matter!! Appearances are indeed deceptive!!!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

49 miles of Trance

Whoever said CA-1 was beautiful just didnt tell me enough about it! Nothing in the world would probably compare to it - a photographer's paradise for sure!!

This is what I observed when I had spent my first weekend in San Francisco, CA a couple of weeks back. That weekend started like any other - lazying around and thinking what to do, except this time, I was in San Francisco. I had to motivate myself to do SOMETHING. With a couple of maps printed out, I ended up at Golden Gate Bridge. Man, no words to describe the monstrous beauty. Without my handycam, I was handicapped. But managed to absorb some of the scenic beauty with a Kodak disposable camera. Then, the next day - sunday started really late but managed to catch sunset at Point Reyes and also got to see the Muir beach. The drive to Point Reyes was just .... absolutely no words at all to describe the ecstasy I felt while driving to the light house atop of the Point Reyes National Seashore. Hopefully I will be able to upload some pictures that I had taken during the drive soon!!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Surname Summary..

Everytime I have to give my last name over phone like for airline or hotel reservations, I go thro' a nightmare. With the number of vowels in my last name, people sometimes think I am actually making it up.

Like today, I was trying to fix an appointment with the insurance lady (my company switched insurance provider and all of us had to meet personally with this lady). I gave her a part of my last name while fixing up the appointment. When I actually went to her office, she wanted to verify my ID and all that since I had more letters to the last name that I had originally given over phone. That was usual and so I didn't make a big deal out of it. Then, we went about doing some paper work. At the end of the session, she asked me "Have you ever considered switching your last name". I thought she was kidding and started laughing. Then, looked at her face and realized she was serious. I asked her what she meant. She goes "A lot of international people take up easier last names when they come to US. Maybe you could shorten yours". I was furious at her for even suggesting it. I said "Its my dad's name and I would never give it up". She went "Oh, I am merely suggesting. It will be easier for all paperwork. But one advantage is - with such a last name, you would probably never be a victim of identity theft". That did make me smile! The crook would probably give up after the first few letters!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Independence Day..

The best memories of independence day was in school. After that, nothing profound and meaningful was done on this day!

I was a 'girl guide'. So, the day started with donning the blue uniform with scarf and the badges. I used to be so proud when I entered school. Then, as a senior girl guide with the maximum number of badges, we used to have the privilege of helping the chief guest hoist the national flag and make sure its at the right height, etc. Every year, for republic and independence day we used to learn a new national song (from among the 24 national songs I think - one in each major language....) and sing it during the occasion. So, that was a perk for me. I got to know all national songs. Ofcourse, cannot complain about the end of the occasion with several packets of chocolates being distributed.

Happy Independence Day!!

PS: Blame it on the day job and several sleepless nights in a row for such an unenthused post!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Escalator and Elevators

I have had several interesting episodes on escalators and elevators. Oh, don't start to imagine things. I will elaborate.

I used to be really scared of escalators. Yes, I still consider myself a Chennai-ite. No, I haven't been to Spencers (well, officially!!). So, the first trip to US was nightmare - not only I had to locate stairs and elevators when everyone else was using the escalators; I also had to drag my small suitcase and carry my heavy jacket! After reaching grad school and seeing that there were no escalators in and around school campus, I was relieved. But my relief was short-lived. After the first week, we had to go and get social security number at the city hall. It was a multi storeyed building with escalators!! My roommate and my TA went with me since they had to get their driving permits. So, while going down on the escalator to the SSN office, I somehow managed by almost fracturing my roommate's hand by holding it too tight. While coming back, the two of them were word tossing. You know, arguing some guy and girl perspective stuff and so forgot that I existed and started going up. I took one look at the escalator and my legs would just not move. I stood down staring at the moving stairs and my friends were already on first level. Then, they started laughing and said they would come down to get me. Meanwhile, this 40-ish American offered me his support for the ordeal. He said his daughter had the same trouble initially. He started asking me questions as to where I came from, where I was studying, etc. Before I knew it, we were talking about things and we were on first level. He had totally distracted me and had almost dragged me along to the first level. Well, after that one time, I grew comfortable to escalators.

In elevators (Lifts), I have met several interesting people in those few moments of transit between floors - like this African-American guy who talked nonstop for 10 min about unionization of elevator operators in 1970's, the American named Smith something who said how engineers did a bad job building the Indiana university library (the library is sinking over an inch every year because of the weight of the books present, which wasn't originally taken into consideration) right after I told him I was an engineer :-(, the lady who described in short how to choose earrings based on mood/dress, etc when she saw the hoop I was wearing that day, lots of discussions about Colts, White Sox, Chicago Bulls and Bears, F-1, NASCAR, ....not that I understood all or some of it, but atleast kindled my inquisitiveness to know more about it...

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Bewilderment at work!!

There is no better word to say what happened to me at work today - complete bewilderment.

I started working on a new project a couple of weeks back at a manufacturing facility. The project manager is a Middle-Eastern guy or so I thought, you know after looking at him, by his name, looking at the pictures of his family at his desk - ladies with purdah, etc. I guessed he was probably from Turkey or Iran or in and around there.

To give you the background story, this manufacturing facility unlike any other is full of politics and so lots of finger-pointing, blaming and cross-overs happen all the time. Some stuff happened on Monday which sucked me into the politics of the place. So, the PM wanted me to kinda give my side of the happening, my view and opinion of people involved and other such details when he invited me to lunch with him today.

I go outside to the cafeteria and he was already waiting. We bought lunch and sat outside facing the water front. The first thing he said was "Woh Tony ek number ka saala hai aur tu uske baaton ko math manna". I was taken aback - not at the language, but at the sudden outburst in Hindi and started laughing. Then, he went "Oh.. so you didn't understand what I said? I spoke in Hindi and I am from Bombay". OMG.. I couldn't have been more wrong. Then, after several basic introductions about background and stuff, we started talking in Hindi and we got pretty comfortable.

I have never had an Indian boss before and so have never actually spoken to anyone at work in any Indian language. This was the first time and although the start was a bit dramatic, things settled down thereafter!!

Monday, August 07, 2006

The little girl..

I flew to San Francisco last week. Flying in from Midwest seemed to be not so much as an ordeal. Especially considering the variety of entertainment that I had onboard the aircraft. It was almost like the long haul flights to India - people struggling to get the exit row seats, babies screaming during take off, landing and at intermittent intervals, parents giving that apologetic smile to neighbor's for their kids, trying-to-remain serene and smiling airhostess, etc.

One thing which happened had me smiling. My neighbor was a European on her first trip to SF with her 5-yr old curious, pondering daughter, who was scared of window seats. The lady introduced herself and was conversing pleasantly with me. After a couple of hours of flying, the kid got bored and started walking around. So, the lady was trying to keep up with the kid. Then, she took the kid to the pantry and started explaining what was where, how first class is separated, etc.

It was then, that I remembered. I didn't remember the actual happening. But I remember my parents telling me about it. I was probably around 3 when I took my first long distance train trip - from Chennai to Calcutta. It was probably 3 days onboard the train and so my parents had prepared long and hard for it - to keep me entertained for days and nights on the train, prepared all necessary food and other things. Anyhow, after the first day, it seems I got really pesky and started going around. So, my dad started to take me to different coupes and showing me the different coaches etc. When the train stopped at some junction (stopped for a long time), it seems we walked and ended up near the engine. Then, my father got into it with me and started showing me the engine and I playfully started getting my hands dirty playing with coal and stuff. When the engine driver and others got onboard again, they were taken aback to see a kid amongst them and the dad explaining to the kid how things work, how they throw that ring at every station, etc. Being an old guy with a bunch of kids himself, he started explaining some intricacies in kid terms.. The train started and we were still in the engine with the train guys. My mom back in the coach started to get worried since we had stayed away for about 2 hrs then. So, she was looking out the window and wondering what to do, etc. Ofcourse she knew I was safe since my dad was there with me. But we could not do anything until the train stopped the next time. So, when the train stopped in the next station after about 45 min, we rushed back to the coach where my mom was and she was so relieved to see us, a bit darkened with the coal effect, but basically safe!

I so want to be that little girl with her parent, being taken around - no responsibility, no worry, no troubles, no work, no decision making, relaxed all the time, maybe play with friends, eat whatever without worrying about calories (not that I am a health freak, but you know just to be a little precautious; after all a girl has to do what she has to do!!), no taxes and bills, sing a lot or make a lot of noises without caring for others, hmmmm......

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Boys will be boys..

Not a lot of times, be it in school or college or work, have I been picked on. A few months back, I was working with a bunch of engineers down at Dallas, TX. Other than a couple from my own company, rest were strangers and I was the only girl and the only one in 20's among them. But the team worked very well together and I never had any trouble until the day of commissioning.

On the fine morning when commissioning was going on in the facility, things started. We were testing some things and suddenly the alarm sounded. It was designed to be a no-man facility and so the alarm sounds as if to wake up an entire town. The first time when the alarm sounded, I was taken aback.. it just happened suddenly without any warning. When the engineers around me saw that I got scared for a second, while some were concerned if I was alright, my colleagues (and good friends) started making fun about how I was just a little girl who gets scared at noises. I let it go. Just a friendly remark and I didn't mind it. We got back to work. After several hours, things were winding down and I was left alone to finish up some stuff in a particular area of the facility and the others were taking off to a different area. I had some trouble with things I was doing and was really concentrating and didn't notice things around me. Then, suddenly the alarm sounded again. I was taken aback and stepped away from the equipment I was working on - my face all scared and red.

I look up at the control room and my colleagues were standing with a camera in their hand and smiling and waving. :-( . I couldn't believe they were picking on me. Some thing that a 10-year boy would do to his classmate in school. In front of a whole bunch of technicians and manufacturing guys, I was being picked on by my 40+ year old colleagues, all being experienced engineers.

I couldn't do anything but just smile and laugh it off. When they realized it didn't have any impact on me, they let it go. But things didn't stop there.. this is one of the most told stories in my office - whenever I am around. Like this week, I am working in San Francisco and one of my colleagues made it a point to let my new colleague who is going to working with me, know that I am scared of alarms.

But.. boys will always be boys...Right?

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

First bad hair cut for $30....

Of these 20+ years of existence, this is the first time that I have had such a bad hair cut. Well, not so much a cut.. just a trim and styling.

After a hair trim every 3-6 months, I feel happy and pretty.. (almost like the tune of I feel pretty, Oh, so pretty...). The last time I had a trim was in February. I went to this sophisticated spa place in the city along with my colleague's wife (I asked her for a good hair trim place and since she went to this spa twice a month for whatever reason, she offered to take me with her when she went there).It cost me a freaking $170 for just one trim - an inch of hair was probably cut and styled. I couldn't believe it and so this time, I decided to ponder around and find a new affordable place around. I did find one nearby and fixed an appointment. I went in and started talking to the lady and everything went well until she started to actually cut my hair. I realized that from the way she held her scissor to the way she combed my hair, everything was,well, not right. But I couldn't stop her. So, I let her show her talent and at the end realized that my hair was a massacre - my head was clearly like a war zone. I got a layered cut. But its now just not layered, but there exist micro and macro layers in between the actual layers.

It was almost like the 'Friends' episode when Phoebe gives Monica a bad cut not thinking about Demi Moore. Apart from my hair being indescribable, I am unable to stop from fidgeting with it, trying to neaten it all the time at work. The layered cut atleast let me put my hair into a heap with a clip. But with macro and micro layers in between now, nothing heaps up or fits in just one clip.

To make matters worse, at the client's office today, a new European guy with hip-long straight blond hair has moved into my room. :-(

Monday, July 31, 2006

The Inevitable Conversation

Realizing how much similar is the way any relationship works in this world. Last week, I went out to lunch with a colleague, his wife and their two young kids - 18 months and 6 weeks old. So, you can imagine how interesting the lunch would have been - the 6-week baby crying on and off in her sleep, the 18-month old trying not to eat vegetables and so the parents coaxing her about it and trying to bribe her with cheese cake and chocolates for dessert, the couple sharing the lunch and just conversing with me about the general nothings - the weather, traffic, Bush and Middle-East and you know, the usual trivia.

Amidst all this, all of a sudden, with a bewildered face, the wife said "You know what I found today - my first grey hair". The husband started laughing and teasing her about it. I felt like Kabab-Mein-Haddi for a little bit. But then, they recovered from the moment and my colleague started talking about how its just women who worry about grey hair, wrinkles and dark eyes. So, with two ladies around - his wife and me, we launched an argument that successfully took out the rest of the lunch conversation and the rest of the day of work. Ofcourse, you can imagine how it would have gone!

This also rewound my thoughts to the year 1994 when almost a similar conversation took place at home in Chennai. My mom is the worrier in my family. Not so much a worrier, but the most caring person ever and hence tends to worry a little. Although she worked full-time, she used to worry about me, my schooling, basically everything around me. So, once when she was asking some serious questions about school and stuff, I was too engrossed in the cricket match going on then, Kumble and his bowling antics and didn't reply to her with much heed. She got upset and it took a lot of time and energy to make things right again. I was usually a very good kid and was never a lot of trouble - at home and school. Anyhow, after that, she started talking how worried she is about me and my future (just like any other parent). My dad started calming her down and said that if she didn't lessen the worries about me, by the time I started working (after school and college), she would have her head full of grey hair. For a second then, everything almost stopped. She retorted.

Skipping what happened at home after that, trying to come back to the original point - some conversations across the globe are almost the same, irrespective of all the differences that actually exist. And this one, hair turning to grey, is an inevitable one in everyone's life. Concur?

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Airline Bewilderment..

After a number of flights - long and short hauls.. I still wonder.. what makes the air hostess decide if to offer a cup of soda or the entire can?

I tried to come up with a base over which this decision is what happens in the air hostess mind when she comes near where you are seated... "how much is he in need of a drink, was he courteous enough when I wished him as he boarded the plane, is he going to say thanks after I offer him a whole can or is he going to sufficiently happy with a cup", etc....

I still dont understand.. any thoughts?

Friday, July 28, 2006

After a royal roast...

After getting royally roasted in Texas, slightly warmed up in Atlanta, drenched in North-East, all for a few days I am back - cribbing and whining. Nothing better than to come home...well, not 'home' home, but.... Anyhow, coming back home, the fridge empty, dusty furniture, month end and so bills to be paid, what not?

It is during these times that I wonder if I should get a roommate. But with the wrong roommate, all these troubles will still exist. So, I pat myselves on the back and go on to do the things that need to be done!

After restless sleep, came to work today and got dismayed seeing my colleague (who was also getting roasted) all cherub and fresh for the day's work. Even with two young kids and a family to take care of, seemed to me that his life was going better than mine at that wee hour of the morning. I pride myself of being a strong, level-headed person. But at times like this I wonder if I should weaken a little and let go of some of my responsibilities and just take up things in a stride.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Intolerable Embarrassment

There were a very few times in the past when I have been really embarrassed. Any day, this incident tops!!

It was in 1996. After a long time, my parents along with my cousins and grandma went to a Hindi movie, in the theater. My cousins were older than I was, barely by a year. We couldn't get continuous seats and so we split in groups of two. My parents sat in one end of a row and I sat with my grandma and cousins at the other end of the same row. My cousins were a riot. Both were born and brought up in Bombay and had come to Chennai just a few years back. So, one of the them was the official translator for my grandma. The movie started. Everything was fine until this particular scene comes onscreen - Karishma and Aamir standing under a tree in the rain and you know what happens next. I DON'T KNOW WHAT HAPPENED NEXT since my grandma just shoved her hands to my face and closed my eyes. Reason - I was too young to see a couple kissing on the movie screen. My cousins were roaring with laughter. Considering the typical crowd on a Friday in a Hindi movie theater in Chennai (all youngsters..), I felt everyone around me who wasn't really into the movie was laughing at me. Probably not. But my two cousins loud laughter were enough to get enough attention. I turned red with anger and embarrassment. To top it, I was really upset with my grandma and asked her about it when I got home. She just brushed me off saying that unlike my cousins I was naive and innocent to see or know about some stuff!!! I wanted to scream out loud - innocent, naive, me - What am image have I created in my grandma's head? I never thought that I was an innocent kid, definitely not after high school.

Anyhow, till this day, I cannot forget what my grandma did!!!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Come Dec, off to Sankara Hall

I probably needn't give an intro to the place. Every music lover/freak/critic probably knows what I am going to write about. Right, the December season and sale of cassettes and CD's at Sankara Hall.

My father and I had a tradition - a marathon deal. From when I became serious (to say the least, understood a little bit about Carnatic) about music, probably sometime in school, my father used to take me to the sale at Sankara Hall during Dec/Jan every year. As soon as we were ready to take off for the marathon, we used to get a word of advise from my mother and grandma. Both of them used to warn my father not to buy everything I ask for and warn me not to let my father overdo anything. So, after all this ado, we took off.

After tricky parking, the marathon started. My dad used was a big fan of the oldies like Ariyakudi, Semmangudi, GNB, Mani Iyer, MBK and so on. I got my dabs on USrinivas,Kadri, Sudha, Soumya, LalgudiJ and so on. So, we each picked a huge stack. Ofcourse the common ones which we both agreed on like MS, Maharajapuram, Nithyashree, Jayashree were bought instantly. The rest we had to delegate. For every GNB and Semmangudi that my dad gave up, I gave up a Soumya or a Sudha. So, finally after a lot of haggling, we settled and paid.

To make things easier at home, we got my mom a collection of MS cassettes(She is one of the biggest MS fans.. she cried for days and weeks when MS passed away and even skipped work for a day or two to watch the live programs on MS; She didn't skip work even when I had exams or was not too-sick ... just to show how big of a fan she was/is) and some kind of bhajans or slokas (like by Soolamangalam sisters or Bombay sisters) for grandma.

Coming to US broke the tradition. But this year, when I went to India in Jan, we did the marathon after a 6 yr gap and it still has its glitter and gleam. Although now, there is less delegation because of two reasons - I am officially an adult and am allowed to choose whatever and since paying is in credit card and it doesn't seem to be a lot of money after all conversions. So, growing up, staying in US and earning in dollars atleast had one sure-shot advantage. :-))

Friday, July 07, 2006

Men with/without the right women...

Just to tally with yesterday's post...

After being married 25 years, one day a fella took a look at his wife and said, "Honey, do you realize 25 years ago, I had a cheap apartment, a cheap car, slept on a sofa bed and watched a 10 inch black and white TV, wore the same jeans/shirt for weeks, but . . . .. . I got to be with a hot-looking, 25 year old, sweet thing. A sweetheart of an arrangement. Now, we have a nice house, nice car, big bed and plasma screen TV, but I'm with a 50 year old, slightly pudgy, graying woman. It seems to me that you are not holding up your side of things."

Now the man's wife is apparently a very reasonable woman. She told him " Honey, go out and find a hot 25 year old sweet thing. I will make sure of the following - you will be living in a cheap apartment, driving a cheap car, sleeping on a sofa bed and watching a 10 inch black and white TV...wearing the same old jeans/shirt for years...."

Speechless he was, but very clear on his situation...

Is that right?? :-)

Thursday, July 06, 2006

How to react?

Two people that I knew (not too-well though) from grad school got married recently. I met the happy couple and wished them a happy married life at a gathering in my friend's place. I was stuck with small-talking to the bride for a few minutes by myself. I had framed a few questions in my mind if such a thing was to occur but was just not prepared well enough. I ask her the usual first question.

"So, how's the married life treating you?"

She replies - " Its great! I don't have to drive anywhere anymore."

Are you kidding me? After this answer I didn't know how to proceed with my other questions. It was a love marriage and so I had expected the bride to be all happy and excited. But this is what I got from her. Of all the things in a married life, the first thing that came to her mind was driving a car? People...

Just when you pride yourself on being able to understand the psyche of a person, you meet a relative stranger and get baffled!!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Why I had to learn?

Little did I realize when I graduated from undergrad that I was going to do more learning, later in life than what I had done till then. Like for instance, about cars.

I never meddled a lot with cars or bikes. As long as I can reach my destination with minimal effort I was alright. Theoretically, just the basics that everyone learns in school were my extent of knowledge on cars too. When I started working that just wasn't enough. Other than just another girl, all engineers in my office were men. Which meant - all the conversations were at some point focused upon nothing but cars - engines, balancing, size of cylinders, wheels shafts, torques, make and model, European parts for American cars and what not? Initially I just used to listen and not chip in. But then, things got interesting once when someone asked about indigenous Indian cars and their manufacturers. I drew a blank!! That night, I started learning.

So now I know why its comparatively difficult to balance an odd-numbered engine-cylinder like in Maruti 800 series ( three cylindered), can visualize (well, most of the time...) the power of an engine when someone states its hp or watt, effect of V-6/V-8 engines, torques on bikes and their associated weight factor, etc.

But now, things have changed slightly...blame it on gas prices and other inflation.... The major topic of discussion nowadays is investments, equities, assets, property ownership, funds, etc. Although I know the basic terminology and can probably hold my fort for about 10-15 minutes, after that, its back to blank. So, time to start my new lessons on finance and investments!!

Friday, June 30, 2006

Brahminish in school ......

This happened when I was in Class X, right before the AISSE exams.

A gang of us, 6 girls, used to share food and eat together during lunch break everyday. One such day, we had a social studies mock exam for 2 hrs right after lunch. So, we wanted to finish lunch quickly and do a little last minute discussion for the exam. We were all really tensed and the teacher was considered not-so-lenient. Although the six of us were studious(in a non-geeky way), we made our share of noise and trouble in school days. Anyhow, here is the incident.

12 noon - lunch break; we start eating; 12.20 pm - we all finished eating and were about to get water. We went to the door and turned back when one of us was missing - Anu. We look back and Anu was just finishing up - u know, packing up her tiffin box and all of a sudden....:-))... took her water bottle, poured a little water in her hand, sprinkled it on the wooden writing desk and started gathering it...(Yechal Ittu, Peraatti ?...not sure...). Among the six of us, 3 were Brahmin Iyers and did this at home all the time. So realized what she was doing as soon as she poured water in her hand and started laughing but didn't disturb her concentration. We were on the floor laughing while the other three didn't understand what was happening (being Jains and from Rajasthan...). The five of us stopped and were waiting to see what Anu was going to do next. She finished the whole process gathered everything in her hand (which was nothing at all since we usually spread kitchen towels over the table before eating) and then looked at us. Finally it dawned upon her. :-). None of us could stop laughing after that for the rest of lunch break and forgot all about the tension of the Social exam.

Till date, nothing beats this incident among my school friends. Some things just make you smile....thinking of the good old days!!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Some music grows on you...

After learning classical music for several years and having a tolerable level of singing experience, I still don't understand some things about semi-classical music and film music. There are some songs which impress you the first time you listen to them and makes you want to listen to them over and over. Then, there are these songs which have to grow on you. I didn't realize this until I started college.

Until college, there were just two categories of music - ones which I like and ones which I didn't. Then, once my best friend from school who shares my passion for singing and music in all respects, gave me a cassette. I don't remember the name of the movie or the songs. The first time I heard it, the songs were not that good. I returned the cassette to her saying I just did not like it. She suggested that I keep it for a week and maybe I will like it the next time I hear it. I didn't believe her then but took the cassette anyways. The second time around, the songs were tolerable and thereafter I actually liked it...the songs kinda grew on me and I started humming them...

There was this movie Saaz which came out in late 1990's with Zakir Hussain's music. The movie didn't go well and was probably a big flop (or maybe wasn't even released). But a couple of songs were good. Atleast good and refreshing at that time..and the lyrics are good too (especially considering the story line) - Raat Dhalne Lagi and Kya Tumne Yeh.

This came at the time when I was a major Hussain fan and after Soundscape series for Wind, Water, Earth, Fire, Valley, Desert, etc. were released. Looking back, it was a weird phase since all of them were instrumental music and it took me a lot of time and energy to understand, appreciate and enjoy them. But, eventually it grew on me. :-)

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

How girls beat the crap out of a boy...

Comments to the last post reminded me of this incident.

This happened probably when I was in 4th or 5th class in school. In a class strength of about 30, there were 3 boys. 27 girls Vs 3 boys. While one boy was the guy who pushed me from the swing...he was kinda cute and so the girls didn't have any trouble with him..... the other was a very calm and quiet guy, the studious one ..... but the third one, Praveen, was such a menace, never used to study, made fun of some of the girls, troubled all teachers, what not..... It was one of those Robin hood sort of period. We needed a Robin to save some of our class girls from this boy. Ofcourse with the interference of the teachers things would have been easier... but a bunch of us - girls wanted to do it ourselves...and so, one thursday after the last class (that was Yoga...., we had compulsory yoga as a part of the curriculum until Class VI..), we waited in the cycle stand for most people to leave and since Praveen was the last to leave the school usually (after chatting with the watchman or making fun of every possible girl), we removed the air from the tires of his cycle in front of his eyes... which led to him chasing after us, we went behind the auditorium and beat up the crap out of him...... no, not too severly, he did defend himself well, now that I think about it..just some cuts and bruises...

The next day, we could not stop smiling... we never thought of the aftermath of such an attack, complaints, teacher, etc.. we just did it... Praveen didn't come to school on Friday or Saturday.. and Monday when he came, he never even looked at the girls....he started sitting in the first row so that we wouldn't tormet teasing him about getting beaten up by a bunch of girls.. :-).. and surprisingly started to study well, not well enough to compete with the girls but good enough to get thro' school and college and get a good job..... and never troubled the girls again...

Now, I am not saying we reformed a boy.. just that sometimes beating the crap out of a boy helps in more than one way... :-)

Monday, June 26, 2006

The guy who pushed me from the swings...

I am an avid swinger...does that word even exist? Anyhow, I like swings. Whenever I used to go to the beach or Woodlands Drive (Cathedral Rd - they used to have a playground...), I never even went near any of the other play things..swings were IT... once I got on one, I never got down until it was time to leave the playground..

So, one Saturday (Class 3rd or 4th) when I was waiting in the school playground (Some Saturday's my father used to have day-off's and so would pick me up from school).. the swing got vacant and so I started to and fro I go higher and higher until suddenly..thud... I fell down.. I enter an oblivious state of bliss when on swings and so didnt actually realize my name being called or a classmate calling me to get off the swing so that he could get on it... so, he just pushed me down.... :-( ... I broke a couple of milk tooth and had hit a my jaw was bleeding and needed dad came in right at that moment, took me to the hospital and things got better.... but after that, they removed the swings in my school considering it to be harmful...although I had morbid hatred against the boy (his face etched in my memory forever), I let it go ... and boys were allowed in my school only till Class 5 and so he was in my class for less than an year or so..

This year, during my annual pilgrimage to Chennai, more than once I got stuck in TNagar/Pondy Bazaar traffic; And being overly precautious, I always wear helmets if in my bike. So, trying to slither in the traffic, between two with an open window and other without..traffic was really, the conversations in the open windowed car was just audible..arguement between a couple...I recognized the guy... It was the same guy who pushed me ..Balachander...I recognized him in a jiffy even after 14-16, I opened the visor of my helmet hoping to see if he would turn and recognize me... recognition flickered in the eyes of the girl in the car... his wife, my school junior... :-)... so, we pulled over and started talking... she introduced me to her husband who never even recognized me... :-(.. after introductions.... I turned to him and asked 'So, do u still like to swing' and his wife got all scared for a second... She went like 'Akka (I was her senior by two yrs n school, that demands a little respect,doesn't it) how did u know abt his fascination for swings'..... Then, finally it stuck him and he remembered (how even after pushing me from the swings 15 yrs back, he was smiling happily and continued swinging). He apologized and we all had a good laugh...

But strange is the way of universe... so many people you know in a lifetime.. who knows when or how you will meet them next...

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Here I come, walking down the street.....errrr...

Here I come, walking down the street.....errrr... driving down the street...

Off to far West for the first time ......

Oh, right and wish me Luck!!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Two things I never stop looking for..

I just realized...there are two things that I never stop looking for...

1. Better apartment
2. Better Job

I guess a lot of people do this. I don't know why. I have a good job...ofcourse I like what I do - traveling 2-3 weeks every month, actual field work, meeting everyone from Yankees to southern rednecks... But, in the last 3 yrs, there has never been a time when I have stopped looking for jobs.. I just keep interviewing and either they reject me or I reject them..Its sometimes fun.. when interviewing for big companies, they provide you with all possible amenities... like last week, I was being interviewed for a position in Iowa and got to meet a friend in Des Moines after almost 10 yrs.... it was almost like a paid vacation for 2 days... sometimes, every things works out as expected, stars align and switch jobs...just once in the last couple of years...

Better apartment.. although I have 6 month to an year lease at most places, I try to keep looking for apartments, especially the blueprints.. I keep looking at the layout of the apartment and thinking I need to build a home (someday...) or how to improve the existing home in chennai....

I think I jinxed myself by posting this...the ceiling in my apartment is leaking again..for the third time in one month... so, guess I have to move now.. :(

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Why I am not fond of summers..

No, its not the heat or temperature...

When I get up in the morning during winter or rainy days, the sun is usually not up yet and that gives me a sense of achievement, some kind of satisfaction that I do something which various successful CEO's do ...atleast according to magazines and their interviews...(up before sun criteria). When its bright and sunny outside during summer at 6 AM, I feel I have started late or I am lagging behind...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Remembering the past - 2

After water flooding over the weekend in my apartment, the next thing in line was - water scarcity. Although it didnt last for more than a couple of hours, it made me think about the scarcity we used to have in Chennai.

When I was in probably classes 5-9, Chennai, especially the area where we lived, TNagar/WMambalam/Kodambakkam area experienced severe water scarcity. We used to have this active 'street association' and they used to have meetings in our house terrace to tackle this problem. As kids we used to wait for the end of the meeting when they used to give Rasna to everyone. My dad didnt like any kind of preserved food or softdrinks like rasna and so my mom never made them at home. So, I used to hang around at these meeting trying to organise and help with the arrangements, etc along with a bunch of kids from my street and get a good helping of Rasna at the end. Then came the time of Metro water lorry's. Man, it was fun. Almost everyone from all houses used to come out and welcome the lorry with such enthu and sometimes even feed the lorry driver and his helper typical TamBram food. All mami's and mama's carrying buckets and pots..... Oh, and if the lorry came before my 6 pm, then its all Patti's and Thatha's who have to carry the buckets and the lorry driver had to face their ire and wrath for not having come later......

.... those were the days...hmmmm ...(read it as 'Peru Moochu')

Then, came water sumps and better water storage and all the fun of interacting with people was lost... we probably dont even know who lives a couple of doors away from us......

Monday, June 12, 2006

Why I do what I do?

Or more importantly 'Why I did what I did'?

Looking back, I wonder sometimes (make it more-than-just-sometimes) why I did something sometime in the past. Trying to make sense of what is already done is difficult. But I do attempt it. Especially in the last few months - conversations with some intellectuals have kindled my past and I try to think and make sense about the past. I believe everything happens for a reason. Going by that philosophy... I have so many Why's, How's and What's. But not a lot of answers!!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Satanic Sunday...

It started out like any other sunday...but sure didnt go or end like wonder how bad can it be...It goes like this...

* My friend called in panic in the morning...her husband just fainted in the shower for no reason and so was all scared....after calling 911, rushing to the hospital, the doc recommending all possible tests, all possible tests being clean, ultimate conclusion was said that he was perfectly healthy and PROBABLY fainted bcoz he had got up from bed suddenly after deep sleep and so the brain received insufficient blood rushed to the brain. I didnt even know something like that existed. What are supposed to do after waking up in the morning after deep sleep? Lay in the bed for a few minutes until the blood supply is normal and at the right pace.

* My mom had mentioned on Saturday that I was going to become "Atthai" in a few months...So, I called to congratulate my "Manni" (sis-in-law) only to find out that there were some complications and she was hospitalized....hopefully she feels better soon..... and me becoming an "Atthai" is delayed as of now...

* Sunday ritual for my neighbours who live in the apartment above mine - laundry. Only this time, they forgot to close the water tap after usage and went out. So, their apartment started to flood. The water didnt just stay there! It seeped to my apartment thro' the ceiling. I went out and came back at about 4 pm only to see water gushing thro' all electrical outlets in the kitchen and living room. There was a pool in the kitchen and carpet in the living room was soaking wet. Not a lot of my stuff was ruined. Bedroom was saved and so was my essentials - laptop, all my books, bed and stuff....spent the entire evening cleaing up and trying to hold the fort... Realised the importance of having a roommate then!

* My friends had come over on Saturday. One of them saw my ear peircing and was like 'With a couple of tatoos, you will be on your way to gypsyhood'...:-(

Hopefully, the week goes better than this!! It has to, since I am scheduled to meet important people, professionally...!!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Work....and lunch... and non-smoking breaks!!

I started working in the city where I live now in July 2005. For the first few months, I was stuck in the office and didn't know my colleagues well enough to go out with them for lunch. So, I either took home-cooked food or ate out. But then, once I started traveling extensively with them, I got to know them better. So, after September 2005, we all ate out together most of the days when we were in the office.

Then, my colleague C's wife became pregnant. Things changed. C talked about saving for the kid, etc. So, we all decided that we would go out for lunch on Tuesdays and Fridays and bring food from home and eat in the office itself the rest of the days. This charter was added in Jan 2006 and things have been going good since. I mean, all of us travel and when we come to office we know beforehand if we are going out...if not, we make our own arrangements... and it also restricts our eating-out and spending habits. [although the charter holds good only when there is nothing 'happening' in the office like layoffs, new hires, boss out of town, etc.... the charter is automatically voided under such circumstances...nothing beats office gossip..right??]

Now, apart from all this, my colleagues take smoking breaks every few hours. Nothing stops them from this break. Even when we are in the middle of a conference call, they will let me handle it by myself and go out for a smoke. Almost like that episode in Friends in Rachel's new job where her two colleagues make decisions on smoke breaks. In my case, no decision making is involved with smoke breaks. But just miss out on the discussions that are project-related.

Alright, my colleagues are back from smoke break. Guess, we have to get back to work!!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Driving and Men/Women

What is it about driving that makes me go frenzy whenever I am not in the driver's seat? I am not sure if everyone feels so. I am usually a road-sensible person and never freak out when driving, but its a whole different world when I am the passenger. Usually at work, whenever we go onsite, I either fly or take a cab or one of my colleagues rents a car and I sit in the back seat. A couple of weeks back, I had to drive to client site along with one of my colleagues (C), about 200 miles away from us. So, we drove in C's car. Everything was pre-planned and going good, until C freaked me out with his following-car-in-front-too-closely routine. I had to grab the dashboard, just incase.

I hate the shotgun seat, except for when my dad drives or I am on a road trip in a car with passenger side air-bag. Even in that case, I wear seat belts (with everyone around me driving me insane with their sarcasm). I consider myself a decent driver. Even then, I think its normal being paranoid about someone else's driving.

Coming back to the subject, I know C has a good driving record and is carefully on road since he gets to chauffeur his 2 yr old daughter all the time. But still, everytime he was going too close to the truck or van in front of us (any vehicle larger than the one we were in), I had to strap on and hold the door or dashboard. C noticed that I was getting antsy with his driving and so when we took a break for dinner while coming back, he asked me about it. I told him frankly what the problem was. He started with his analogy on the whole thing - 'the women thing'. He said even his wife freaks out when he drives. I realized that it didn't have anything to do with his wife, just his 'men and driving' opinions. Then, we started arguing how women are bad with directions and driving in general. How long will men keep saying this? Then, I relayed this whole incident to a friend. He added his two cents worth but again reaching the same conclusion, men drive better than women.

Just accept it - women, maybe not all, but most women are road savvy; they have good road sense and so are better drivers than some men!!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Just another...Monday

It was just one of those days - yesterday...manic..

After a site visit for two weeks, I came back to office yesterday amidst a lot of happenings.

** I had a dinner meeting last night with two of my boss (BG and MB)and three other colleagues. The dinner was supposed to be at 6.30 pm in one of those biggie restaurants - where you have wear shoes and suit/blazer. If you think that was bad, one boss and three of us were right on time. We were sitting and waiting for my other boss (BG) to come. He didn't come until 7.15 and so we tried calling his cell phone. No response. Then, at about 7.35 pm, he comes in and says " hey, guys, why haven't you ordered, lets order and eat quickly".... we were all amazed. No word of apology for coming late. No reasons. Now, MB is my actual boss. BG is just another partner of the company based in California. But he travels to our office often and so is kind-of our boss too. But do people have to be that rude when they are boss? Sometimes people higher-up in cadre need to be really humble to make others around them feel comfortable. Right??

** Next stop - Visa consulate...I am tired of getting various visas everytime I travel abroad. This time, its not too far. But still the whole process of having pictures taken, documents remade, fixing up appointments and going to the consulate is too much!! There shld be like a universal visa or atleast continental visa.

** To top the day, I saw Kalabak Kadhalan.. man, was it awful...just mushy romance stuff in the start, psychotic woman in the middle and tragic end!!

Enough of punch-bag stuff for today!!

Monday, June 05, 2006

How difficult?

How difficult are these things in life? make ppl like you just as much as you like them care abt them just as much as they care abt u make friends who are worthy of you as much as you are worthy of them

I guess its really difficult!! Maybe not... maybe its just a gamble, just like anything in life!!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

After almost 10 years of wanting it...I got it finally!!

Yes, after lusting, waiting and wanting it for almost 10 years I finally did it!! It was such an amazing experience. I cannot even stop looking at it.

My mom was a little worried about it when I told her how much I wanted to get it done. But now that she saw it, she seems relieved and happy for me. My dad was a little furious. But I think he will get used to the idea. He actually started laughing when I explained to him how it was done, the lady who carried out the procedure and the after-effects.

So, enough with the suspense already. I got my ears pierced - the second time. My ears look so cool now. I wanted it for so long - longer than I can remember .I get that ache everytime I see someone with more than one piercing in each ear. Now, even I have got it!!!!!

Probably its all silly. But I finally did what I wanted for so long!!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Last two weeks....

I have never worked so hard in my lifetime - not in school, never during any exams or anywhere else!! In the last two week - I worked thro the two weekends (flushing the plans I had for the long weekend to drain)..

To top this - I stayed at the Hilton near the airport. So could not sleep thro the landing and take off every night.

Well, I got paid good for the last two weeks. So, atleast some compensation.

But, damn tired and so will get back to blogging in a few days!!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Start and end of day for MNC's

Could not stop laughing after this: Start and end of day for MNC's

Oh, saved the best for the last.....

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Limitless Rarity

Most things in life are limited in some way or other. Such limited editions are a rarity - like a limited first print books, first recorded albums, etc. But there is a elite section of limitless rarity - with friends. I have observed that there are three kinds of friends - limited friends, limitless friends and factor-dependent ones, to just name the classifications.

Let me explain. With some friends you always know the limit that exists, not a visible one sometimes. Be it with the stuff you can talk with them, way you can behave when around them, people you can introduce to them or things you expect or they expect from you. There is nothing wrong with them or the relation you have with them. You know them well enough to be a little careful around them. May be you don't share a great deal of views....just that there isn't a lot of common breeding ground. These people are probably the ones you think twice before calling after 10 pm. You may depend on them, they may depend on you and given a necessity, you might end up calling them after 10 pm sometimes.

Then, there are some friends with whom you have never had any boundaries. This is LIMITLESS RARITY. They are always there for you, just as you are for them, doesn't matter the time of the day or day of the year. Such friendships are what people yearn for. Nothing will change them - place, money, spouse,kids, .....nothing...even if you are oceans apart in different time zones, you know you can count on them anytime. They may forget your important days or not be the first ones to know about the happenings of your life. But still they always exist in your minds as you do in theirs. Limitless rarity indeed and we might even find one like this if we are lucky enough!

Then, there is the other group of several factor-dependent people. It depends on their mood, situation, priority, time, etc if you are actually their friend or not. They may probably be the ones you go out with for movies or other such things when your friends from other two groups are held up elsewhere. Probably the last ones you turn for help or advise when needed. But you know of their existence. So do they. Just that, you are not their priority. They have their own limit friends and limitless friends. Maybe they are like backups for an existing redundant network! (Blame it on the day job for such a comparison)

Strange However, whoever the friend is and whatever category they belong to, aren't we just blessed to have them in our life in one way or another?

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Why cant we just get along??

Sometime last year, I was dining with a couple of politically-sound American colleagues. They were asking me about the British Raj, politics and corruption (how they go hand-in-hand), terrorism, PoK, etc. Now, I don't consider myself an expert in any of these. I remember some of my stupid ideas when I was a kid.

For instance, in the 80's before the start of any commercial movie in most theatre in Chennai, they will show clips about the freedom struggle, etc(I don't remember when they stopped doing it). I used to literally cry during those short films. I used to think, when I grow up I should just go and shoot some of the British just like they did the Indians during Jalianwala Bagh or at other times. When I was about 6 years of age, my parents took me to Kashmir. We went as a group with a couple of my dad's friends and their families. Accepted that I was only a 6-yr old kid and don't remember much about the trip. But some places like Ladakh, Dal Lake, Ganges and stuff like my mom asking for curd in hotels to feed me and that being non-existent alien concept in parts of Kashmir other than Srinagar, being carried around by an old man since I was too young to walk in the snow, mule ride in the mountains...somethings just get etched in your memory. When I see some pictures, I cannot recollect some of them. But, to me Kashmir was paradise. Then, terrorism started and Kashmir was massacred. I thought if only I could go to the terrorist, show them Dal Lake, they would go back to their home willing nothing but peace. Little did I know, there were more things in the world beyond the comprehension of a 8-10 yr old. Anyways, I grew out of all of this ideas.

But some things never change. So, when I was dining with my colleagues, they were asking me about Pakistan and India, terrorism,etc. I told them India and Pakistan don't get along only after what British did in 1947 - partition. My colleague was appalled. He said he had never heard of such a thing before. Even I was surprised. I hadn't given any thought to such stuff in a long time. But there it was.

I just wish that everyone could just get along with everyone else. Most parts of our life/living is personal and no one's business but ours. Whatever interaction we have with the outside world can be peaceful. Cant it? I wish all countries were unified and we didn't need passports or visas. Maybe just passport for identification purposes. Just fly anywhere anytime we want without fear of anything, maybe just a few things. Come to think of it, wish they would unify the currencies of the world. Then, the decision I need to make (which boggles me everytime I think about it) if and when to go back to India will not be so hard!!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Random Thoughts...1

After a grilling weekend of idleness (other than few hours of exhilarating chat sessions), I have some thoughts.

** Thought Pramod Mahajan would recover...convalesce for a few months and be back to rock politics. Such a sad demise...

** Anything big and involving money always stays within a family even if the family is in shreds and in war either among themselves or with outsiders. Is this right?

** I feel : its never important how LONG you know a person; its how WELL you know a person.

** Whatever we do, says less about what we can do, but more about who we are.

** Why is 'Never Say Never' getting more meaning in my life? I am doing so many things nowadays which I never thought I could/would!!

** Wish there was just a Yes/No in life rather than Yes/No/DontKnow/Maybe/Sometimes/etc..

Jotted down some more in a post-it stuck to my computer desk at home...will append soon....

Friday, May 12, 2006

Importance of Birth Order

Being an only child for my parents, I have been stereotyped often, sometimes even before people actually get to know me. This sore part of my life turned out to be not-so-bad recently when my colleague led me to an article about birth order and how the recent research shows startling results. I have jotted down the results of study here:

** First borns are confident, determined, born-leaders, organized, eager to please others and themselves and like to avoid troubles. On the downside, there's definite pressure from family and high expectations from everyone. Some famous first borns include George W. Bush, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Bill Cosby and Oprah Winfrey.

** Middle borns handle disappointments better, act as great negotiators, tend to make loyal friends easily and end up with a more relaxed attitude towards life. With the middle borns, parents are often more easy-going and less demanding. with second and third children. Some famous middle borns include Jay Leno, Donald Trump and Barbara Walters.

** Youngest children in a family are persistent, affectionate, great storytellers, love to make people laugh or take center stage. Many actors and comedians are the youngest children in their families. On the downside, many youngest children find that their parents don't give them a lot of attention or praise during important first-time events. Famous youngest children Drew Carey, Rosie O'Donnell, Jim Carey, Whoopi Goldberg and Eddie Murphy.

** Only Children have most of their traits similar to the first born. They are confident, try to be perfectionists, pay attention to detail, good in academics, tend to read a lot and have a good memory for facts and figures, spend a lot of time with grown-ups and so are confident and well-spoken. On the downside, the only children can find themselves under a ton of pressure to succeed, have difficulty going second and sometimes overly critical. Famous "Onlies" include F.D. Roosevelt, Robert DeNiro, Natalie Portman, Charlize Theron and Robin Williams.

Maybe its not so bad being an only kid ....personally, do you think birth order causes any qualm in one's life?

PS: This is just a common trait. There are always exceptions!!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

If women controlled the world...

Could not stop laughing after viewing these pics..:-))

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Tips to succeed in the modern world??

1. Rome did not create a great empire by having meetings; they did it by killing all those who opposed them.
2. If you can stay calm, while all around you is chaos, then you probably haven't completely understood the seriousness of the situation.
3. Doing a job RIGHT the first time gets the job done. Doing the job WRONG fourteen times gives you job security.
4. Artificial intelligence is no match for Natural Stupidity.
5. A person who smiles in the face of adversity probably has a scapegoat.
6. Plagiarism saves time.
7. If at first you don't succeed, try management.
8. Never put off until tomorrow what you can avoid altogether.
9. TEAMWORK means never having to take all the blame yourself.
10. The beatings will continue until morale improves.
11. Never underestimate the power of very stupid people in large groups.
12. We waste time, so you don't have to.
13. Hang in there, retirement is only 50 years away
14. Never criticize someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes; that way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away AND you have their shoes !
15. A snooze button is a poor excuse for no alarm clock at all.
16. When the going gets tough, the tough take a coffee break.
18. Succeed in spite of management.
19. Aim Low, Reach your Goals, Avoid Disappointment.


Saturday, May 06, 2006

Stop me!!

Somebody has to stop me from watching movies..not one in particular...but in general! I am averaging 6-7 movies a week. Not to mention comedy/drama soaps - Friends, Seinfeld, W & G, ELR, GG!! All this inspite of not having a television at home!

Friday, May 05, 2006

8th Wonder of the World

Mankind and its innovations....nothing is the limit??

Monday, May 01, 2006

My Friends.....

This was a terrible weekend. In just one go, I realized how I lost four of my very good friends in a time span of less than a year.

I lost one friend to her marriage and husband...can't really blame her. But from the moment she picks up the phone (invariably I am the one who calls her nowadays; she is busy with her marriage, ofcourse!!)till we hang up, the one topic which keeps coming back (over and over again) in less than a 30-min conversation is her husband, her in-laws and generally her ideas on marriage. I am appalled. She is the learned one who used to talk about science and books on fiction..but nowadays it is astrology and romance...quite a change....

I lost my best friend of almost 6 years to his new (girl)friend. I know I should not make a big deal of it. But I learned about this from his other friends....would have felt a little better if he would have just told me about her directly...We were good friends and nothing more. But still doesn't he owe me some straight-forwardness? Is it wrong for me to expect this?

The third friend - everything happened in such a jiffy with her. She became a good friend within hours of our first meeting. Everything with her used to be exciting and pulsating. But she had to move to a different country for her job...we gradually (I am still not sure) lost touch in each other's life!! Even now, we do talk and chat, but something is missing in the friendship..distance, maybe....

The fourth one was my closest buddy from when I was in grade school. Nothing, I mean, nothing had separated us in the last 15 years or so, until recently. Atleast we used to email and talk to each other every month or so.. We were two people who irrespective of how long ago we had conversed last, can just delve into anything anytime. Now, I lost her. To her dream job and great future. No complaints. She was the best person anyone could be associated with!!

I still have a whole bunch of people whom I can count on for anything. But these four, who were a major part of my life are irreplaceable. What else to do, but to wish them the best for a great future!!!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Remembering the past -1

Was reminiscing the sweet-nothings about childhood, school and college days - good old days with no money-worry, staying with parents, happy outings, nothing too stressful like, to jolt some of them down...Mom's filter coffee, Mom's singing and slokams, elaborate Sunday family lunch with pearl-onion sambar and potato curry, Ragavendra temple in T Nagar, December Carnatic music concerts, Crazy Mohan and SV Shekhar dramas, Mom's vetha-kozhambu, British Council library, Marina, Venkataramana Boli Stall, Adyar Grand Snacks, Higginbothams, electric train rides with my dad on Sundays when he drops me off at railway station to go to college, last minute packing for college, crashing my dad's car in my neighbor's fence, first time my parents bought me a computer, carnatic music classes - practice sessions before concerts/competitions, Sunday evenings with my friend N discussing about future and such stuff in the terrace, shopping at Nilgiris, Woodlands drive-in at Cathedral Road (which is crappy nowadays, but when I was a kid, it was really the place to be for families on Sundays right after Marina beach), reading any novel that I can lay hands on and sitting on the sofa reading it all day without even moving an inch unaware of what happens around me, every single minute spent with my maternal grandparents, playing with my great-grandmother when she was alive and kicking, shopping in T Nagar and Mambalam with my paternal grandmother, first few weeks with my dog (he became Dennis the Menace after the first few days...), any kind of swing (oonjals) anywhere, first elevator ride....

I wish I could go back in time... but not be a child actually, just enjoy these things being an adult. Well, actually since its wishing, might as well wish to be able to go back and forth ..I would not want to miss the present events like... long drives, first snow..a bliss everytime, road trips with friends, talking to some ever-dependable friends, Tiramisu, proud self-cooking and trying to compare it to my mom's, shopping for shoes,...somebody stop me!!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


I saw Sriram's post about his recent airline experience. That made me write about my vivid trip to India last year. My annual year-end trip to India began at Chicago (after meeting some friends there). What happened? O'Hare, Snow storm in Europe and lousy flight connections happened!! :-(

The flight was supposed to leave at 4.30 pm. But because of a delay in the corresponding incoming flight, my flight was delayed by 3 hours. At about 7.45 pm, we boarded the flight. By the time everyone had boarded, it was time to de-ice the plane again. We were sixth in line for the de-icing truck. So, we sat inside the plane very patiently. At about 9 pm, the plane took-off. But, by the time I landed in Europe, I had missed my connecting flight to Chennai. The airline people did not know what to do and I did not have a transit visa. So, they booked me a different flight to Delhi, connecting to Chennai on a different airline. I had to stay in the airport lounges for 8 hrs until my next flight. Unlucky me - whenever I tried to call home to let my family know that I missed my flight, etc, the phone was either engaged or I could not get the line.

After the over-crowded airport lounge for 8 hrs, I got on the flight to go to Delhi. My seat was the one just before the pantry, hence, with absolutely no pushback effect on the seat. When the plane is moving on the runway, the airhostess tells me that they have lost both of my luggages. It was PROBABLY still with the airline which flew me from Chicago to Europe. They hoped to get it to Delhi on the next flight from Europe. I was dismayed. But at least I wasn’t lost, just my luggage.

Without any more events, I reached Delhi. Filled out forms, immigration stuff for my luggage, etc. Actually the airline had misplaced luggage belonging to lot of people. So there was a huge crowd in that counter. Finally my turn came, after finishing the formalities; they tell me that I had to go to the domestic terminal (which was a 20 minute taxi ride) for my flight to Chennai.

You might think that I would have taken the taxi to the domestic terminal, got into the plane and reached Chennai sound and safe. No!!! Because of excessive traffic between the two airport terminals, I missed my flight AGAIN!! The next flight to Chennai was after 7 hrs. The airline authorities took pity on me and upgraded my seat to first class after all this. By that time, I had lost all energy to be excited about any kind of upgrade. I waited for the next 7 hrs in the first-class airport lounge. Ultimately, after being delayed for 21 hrs, I reached Chennai at 11 pm on a Saturday (as opposed to about 12 am on Friday), but ‘luggage-free’.

So, during the stay in Chennai, my everyday routines were preceded by prayers for a simple and hassle-free return flight to US!!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Audaciousness of SOME Guys

I got this over-demanding groom profile as a forward from my friend.

[Pls. note: We are NOT Tamilians;we are open to Tamil/Telugu/Kannada. We speak/understand Tamil, Telugu, Kannada - but, Tamilians speaking/understanding MULTIPLE languages along with Tamil preferred]


* ONLY after you INITIALLY send across ALL the stuff requested in point 2 of the profile, it'll be helpful in analysing your family circumstances and making decisions.

Kindly respond with ALL the INFO requested in point (2) after going through OUR FAMILY CIRCUMSTANCES in point (1).

Kindly respond with ALL the INFO requested in point (2) after going through OUR FAMILY CIRCUMSTANCES in point (1).

(1) Looking for a BEAUTIFUL girl,possessing excellent family values, Degree Educated (3 or 4 years or Masters Degree or recent college passout),


STRICT GARDEN VEGETARIAN (the entire family should be pure garden vegetarian), with excellent family background, preferably from a SMALL & "AFFLUENT" FAMILY.

* Pls. note for those OUT of Bangalore:

My family consists of MY PARENTS AND MYSELF.

There are 2 options considering our situation -
(a) It will be ideal to TAKE MY PARENTS along with me and the girl TO ABROAD after completing relevant Visa formalities.

(b) Alternatively, the girl's family has to keep Bangalore/nearby Bangalore as Base, so that my parents are not alone.

- We need to practically care/consider about my/girl's elder parents in future. Isn't it??????


(2) INITIALLY, please send across
COMPLETE INFO - INDEPTH DETAILS preferred(each and every info requested pls. because we need to consider several factors/circumstances)
(a) such as full family details, i.e, number of family members (siblings) and profile of each,

(b) parents occupational details, location of parents

PERMANENT and TEMPORARY residence (Country, State, City) of family members - if applicable and if family members are staying in different locations,

CITIZENSHIP and VISA STATUS of family members - if applicable and if family members are staying in different locations

(c) 'Visa Stamping on the Passport of the girl'(if any) OR
'Visa Status of the girl'(if any) OR
'Valid Passport Holder' - in order to apply for Spouse Visa later,


(e) a couple of latest full-length PHOTOGRAPHS


(3) From a H-1B Visa holder, 29 years young hahahaha...(and growing younger!!), 173 cms., 68 Kgs., simple, friendly guy, DOESN'T SMOKE/DRINK, fitness freak, down-to-earth guy, magnanimous personality, lively & cheerful, having great sense of humour,

visited 4 COUNTRIES;

B.E. - Computer Science,
Consultant (SINGAPORE),
Consulting Analyst (U.S.A.).


E-mail contact preferred initially WITH ALL THE REQUESTED DETAILS in point (2).

Kindly respond with ALL the INFO requested in point (2) after going through OUR FAMILY CIRCUMSTANCES in point (1).

Have a pleasant day!

Are you kidding me with this? What do some men think of themselves? That they are god-given gifts to women?? Crazy Man!! Most people dont know what they want out of life, what kind of partner they are looking for, etc.... But, knowing and expecting like this (as in the above given profile) is way over limit. Maybe everyone thinks about all this to some extent. But publishing it on paper or online profile shows the audaciousness of the guy. Doesnt it??