Friday, October 16, 2009

Diwali in Edinburgh !!

I was pleasantly surprised on knowing that Diwali and other Indian festivals are celebrated in a grand scale in Edinburgh. So grand that the Council even sponsors some of the events.

This time Navrathri was celebrated on the Calton hills. Apart from serving some mouth watering food they also had effigies of Ram, Ravan and later burst crackers to give a good ending to the event.

Diwali this time is being celebrated at two venues and on two different dates. One of them is being hosted by the SASA (South Asian Student Association) today at Tiviot Place. While the other is being Hosted by the Edinburgh University Vedic Society on the 20th of October in Chaplaincy Center at Bristo Square. The former has some entry charges and the latter has none.

Lots of exiting things are happening at these two venues. You can experience some bangra, Indian classical music apart from having some great food.

So its time to end your week and begin you next week with a tradition style.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Edinburgh - Holyrood park: part 2

I was too busy converting currency to appritiate some of the stunning places in Edinburgh. One amoung them was the Holyrood Park.

Dear old sun, who tans people back home, had made a short trip to the city. The air was warm, the grass looked greener (It was basically a day to dry all moist clothes outside). We, Tarun the dentist, sradda the liguist, Rishi the sound engineer and me, set forth on a journey to view the apartment that we guys were going to rent.

We had to cut through the holyrood park to reach the other side where the apartment was situated. The only words that i remeber using repetedly were wow and woooow. Below are the pictures of the park/hillock where one side faces the sea and the other side faces the city and we were facing one of the most beautiful part of the city.

Basically the park is filled with hills, georges, pathces of grass land and has trails all over. Photographers generaly run out of memory and general public runs out of energy before the entire park is explored. Each of the path has a difficulty level associated with it to suit people with different age and interests. For hard core trekkers there are steep path covered with corrugated rocks and stones. For old people who want to take their dog on a walk there are grass covered trails.

As a whole this is a great place to visit if your in edinburgh and see to that your trekking bag is filled with water, food, camera and extra battries ofcourse and do hope that the sun is up and the wind is low.

//for more details on the park do visit this wiki

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Edinburgh - part 1

This is my first blog out of edinburgh. I hoped to write about the beauty of the city but i will end up describing one of my adventures in the kitchen.

Back at home in India. The only reason why i used to go to the kitchen was to take piping hot masala dosas that mom used to dish out or to take a second helping of dishes that she tries after watching her cooking programs on TV. However, these days the scenario has changed. I am primarily entering the kitchen for survival.

Today the picture was different. I expected to have a mouth watering dish but ended up with a running nose. Panic just kicked in, the pizza was getting burnt in the oven and was spewing carbon monooxide all over the kitchen. All the roomies jumped into fire fighting mode. Luckily for us the fire alarm was far away in the hall and there was a good exaust fan and ventilators.

I was later left wondering what i would have done if something like this happened back at home. Probably, i would have covered my nose and casually continued to do what i was doing with a hope that the smoke will subside and that it will taken care of. Its bascially 'chaltha hai' (its okay) attitude.

I guess that attitude will start to take beating from now on and the burnt pizza is just a start.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

shopping is fun ... only for some!!

my friend says shopping is fun,
making people wonder where she all the energy to run.

in she goes and tries all goods put up for sale,
leaving behind a shopkeeper who wonders 'why did i build a shop of this big scale'.

she gets upset after buying something very nice,
if her friend buys the same at a very low price.

so she hops between shops,
in a hope to buy the best so that later she wont regret.

its nine in the morning!!

Its nine in the morning,
time to go to work while everyone is swarming,
but i am at home sitting and yawning.

now its half past noon,
its time to have a quick lunch soon,
but i am at home still yawning in my cocoon.

Its beyond nine in the night,
work at office should have drained all my might,
but here i am wondering what i will do tonight.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

even after i am old

i came in as a fresher,
into a room full or treasure.

The room had no diamond or gold,
it was filled with friends good and old.

Now i am off to a land far and cold,
but will never forget u all even after i am old.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

he is deb the babu !!

i am sure fish has something to do with IQ of ppl who consume it. At least for Kaushik the proteins from fish influenced some neurons to compute and think quickly.
Kaushik deb is his full name, Agratala is his home town, fish is his staple food and star gazing is his hobby.
Deb comes all the way from Agartala to make Bangalore his home. He learns the local language(Kannada) and is capable of using it better than ppl who spent their life time here(some one like me).
We met him 3 years back. i along with a team mate Caren, were responsible for giving deb kt on the project we were working. He was as eager as a fish that wants to get into water and now he is so proficient with the application that we have to ask him for clarifications.
Deb is patient, supportive, and can be looked upon when someone needs help. He carries a lot of responsibilities these days. I am sure ppl like me will get crushed under such pressure.
Go on deb babu...ur sure to rock in the days to come.

//if anyone wants to know more abt deb then this link is for u

he calls himself the don !!

190 is the bus route, in which i met Vinay for the first time way back in 2002. Vinay who is also calls himself CPdon/super hero/don, is an unselfish, caring person and its hard to find ppl like him.

He has a craze for games and is a hard core Hrithik Roshan fan. He was so crazy abt hrithik that he purchased all products that hrithik endorsed.

The ppl and the surrounding shape dons behavior. For example, he pulls leg big time when ppl like vishnu, ambu, me, aparna, kaushik are arnd. However, at home he behaves like an innocent kid who does not know anything :P

Some of dons cost cutting/saving ideas are legendary. They include loo capture ( just like booth capture during elections, only difference is that he plans to charge ppl who enter the loo).

On a serious note, don is meticulous in what he does may it be studies or at work. If some one can beat him in that then it must be don himself.

I just want to give ppl some advice, if someone wants to communicate with don over phone then i would advise them to put the phone on loudspeaker, cos its hard to listen to what don is speaking.

Last but not least, here is some message for don. Dude keep smiling da, as you always have been :).

//if anyone wants to be frnds with don or want to know more abt him follow the link

Friday, April 17, 2009

a kid with a pocket full of talent!!

This is a small story or rather an experience on coming in contact with a seemingly silent kid with a pocket full of talent.

17th April, 2009 was supposed to be a normal day like any other day. It involved scurrying to office, getting into crowded a bus that drives through dusty roads, falling asleep just to be awoken by sudden bumps. However, this day was different. The sound of the revving engines that resonated across the sultry indoors of the bus was superimposed by pleasant music emanating from an instrument that is hard to be classified as a musical instrument.

Before describing the instrument, let me introduce the owner of the instrument. He was just a boy. A boy who was covered with as much dust as the clothes he wore. It is possible that some might attribute this to be a result of a school kid enjoying his summer holidays by frolicking around in playgrounds. However his attire and the instrument he had told a completely different story. They said he probably does not know what it is to go to school and the playgrounds that he can imagine playing in are foot paths. Footpaths, which are home and stage to many unprivileged people like him. However, today the rickety bus that he boarded was privileged to be his host and i was privileged to be one of his audiences.

It goes without saying that the instrument was as austere as the owner. He held a stringed instrument. It had no resemblance, what so ever, with the ones that we see in musical instrument shops. My untrained ears however, attributed the music oozing out of his instrument to a violin. The resonating column of the instrument was a mere scraped out coconut shell whose open mouth was covered with something that looked like snake skin. The metal string scaled the distance between a bridge on the shell and the far end of a bamboo stick that passed through the diameter outer most circle of the shell. The instrument also had provision for tuning. And just like in violin he had bow to help the column resonate.

The stage was set, the audiences were present and the kid with his instrument enters the arena, an arena that is filled by people by chance rather than choice. The minute he slid his bow over the strings all the heads turned towards him and all the ears resonated in sync with his coconut shell. The bus was now filled with pleasant music that drowned the external noise.

The untidy attire and his dust covered visage were now claiming that there is an uncut diamond among us. The bus was honored to have a Mozart, whose talent we savored by chance and not by choice. His music triggered a torrent of thoughts in my mind. How did he learn to play all this? How does he imbibe magic of karnatic and Hindustani music in the sound that his instrument generates? How did he build this instrument in the first place? How does he know that an instrument built on coconut shell compete with violin that is made of expensive wood? How does he know to adjust the length of the string to generate a particular harmonic? In spite of being deluged by so many questions, my mind was floating in the prevailing waves.

The arrival to the Marathahalli bus stop signaled an end of the show and just before the curtains were about to fall in this auditorium, people were requested to contribute their mite. The kid made this day different, he pumped positive energy into the environment and all he gets in return is a thumbs up and a victory symbol on the one/two rupee coins that will hardly make a difference to his life.

I just wish the kid gets an opportunity to play in a real auditorium where the people are charged to listen to his music and where people arrive by choice rather than chance.