Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Let's Rock Hampi - Part III

Ever heard of a saying, too much of a good thing is good?
No? That's bad ...... !
For those who answered yes.........you guys watched the promos .. of Garfielf 2, isn't it? Cool .....! ;-)

Anyway, that was exactly, what was happenning to us ....!

The night's accomodation was at Malligi .... ! No, No that's not a spelling mistake! We were all raring to go the next day. Ofcourse, after (an awesome) breakfast, ....! :-). Our next stop was at Kamalapur, where we joined the fellow caravaners and off we headed, to Hampi.

The first stop was at Virupaksha Temple. We were joined by a middle aged gentleman named Keshav. He was the, ASI director (South) and curator of four museums around that place and had been involved in excavations in Hampi from about 30 years! :O. He was an individual filled with energy,enthusiam and opinions. His witty comments, just ended up making the trip-o-trivia far more interesting! Apart from a few architectural marvels, in Krishnadevaraya's signature style (all puns intended), we witness a few frescos on the ceiling!

Fresco painting of Manmatha ..... (a.k.a Ananga, lest, someone questions me about Calvin or Mickey Mouse! For the sake of argument, i don't know an alias of Mickey Mouse ... :D)

This fresco above depicts, Manmatha, yes the manipulative dude, who can't keep his arrows to himself. As, mythology has it .... Manmatha, who uses sugarcane as bow, flowers as arrows, crocodiles as earings and parrots as mode of transport, disturbs Lord Shiva (who sports a French Beard ...! This fresco dates to 16 Century ,....!! Huh! Then maybe French copied it from us ......! ), who obviously retorts by killing Manmatha. Well, brilliance of Keshav was evident, when, he explained the details embedded in the picture, by the iconographer. The sugarcane .. indicates, the sweetness that should exist in the relationship, the flowers indicate the tenderness and fragrance, the crocodiles indicate, the nature of attachment that should prevail amongst couples .......... ... Cool? Eh? ;-). He went on to add, that there are remedies to most ailments in this world, except for love, resulting in thunderous applause and laughter amongst the victims in the group ......Oops .. did i say victims? They are realists ... :-)

Sasvikal Ganesha .... A monolithic sculpture of Lord Ganesha.

This monolithic Ganesha, is at an elevated platform. The sculptor, of this structure, was pathetic in his estimation! He began, creating the structure with such finesse, that he forgot, he had used up most of the stone. Thus, the dorsal side has not much intricate work, just a thin line .....! Huh! So much for not following the process .... ! There are granaries, that can be viewed from this elevated platfrom, proving that there was definitive trade relations with other countries .........!

The Lotus Mahal ... in the Queen's Palace ...

The Queens', had a time of their lives!! Apart from having plush palaces, these folks had the treasury by their side! The had a water trough within and the place boasted of gardens and such facilities. The picture above, is the Hawa Mahal. The contrbution of Satavahanas to architecture. One can clearly see the influence of the Islamic style of construction. The arches. This place, looks like an inverted lotus. Nope, the place is not as inclined as it looks above........ ;-) . Keshav, aggressively, defended, the reason, kings had so many queens, was because, the queen's were attracted, to the king's who had power. Well, not many agreed to that ..... , though!

The Bold and the Beautiful ..... The Bold and intimidating Narasimha, with Lakshmi. Who says, manicuring was not an in thing then?

Ugra Narasimha, was a brilliant sculpture. The image of Narasimha, is intimidating to say the least. Goddess Lakshmi, is seated on Narasimha's lap. This was completly destroyed, when the kingdom was attacked. ASI has brought back and done up a lot of work on this sculpture. Keshav, then went on to narrate the story of the sculptor. When, the sculptor, was summoned to take up this assignment, he agreed, on one condition, that no one should disturb him when he worked. There were gaurds posted, and work went on for quite sometime. The gates were locked and the sculptor, worked in isolation. After, many days, the sound of chisles stopped. The alarmed gaurds communicated the same to the king, and when they came down .... to see, the sculpture was complete ........... but the sculptor, lay dead prostrated at his own creation. He paid the ultimate tribute to this timless work of art! Indeed, the sculptors' passion .........can evoke goosebumps .... even today ....!

The Stepped Tank,also known as ... Pushkarni

The citadel area of the palace, boasts of remnants of the KrishnaDevaRaya kingdom. It's majestic. One can just imagine, the way this place would have been in its days of glory....! There is a darbar hall, that contained a hundred pillars, with its pillars (at that point) being covered in ornate gems and stones. There are hosts of security points and it had seven layers of security before one can enter the royal citadel area. There are secret passges where the king could get messages from his ministers and the passages are sound proof! What impressed me, most was this tank shown above. ASI found aquaducts and on excavating found, this Stepped tank. Every stone, in this tank was pre fabricated and numbered in the quary itself!! Each stone contains the marking as to which part it would fit into! Brilliant .......! The aquaducts brought in water from Kamalapur, which is about thirty kilometers away!! The principles of gravity were used to design ..... these ducts such that once, the tanks filled it would fill the other and so on. In case, the duct clogged, there were folks who were employed, who filled the ducts back, thus ensuring, supply of water to citadel area was always intact. One can see ... the barracks where gaurds lived too ......... Its amazing ....!

A work of Art .......

A Granite pillar at Hazarama ....

The Hazarama, is another architectural marvel. It boasts of excellence in all its pillars. Granite was used in pillars and some of them have tales of Ramayana emblazoned on them ....

Tales of Ramayana .....

'Kishkinda', the kingdom of monkeys, which is mentioned in Ramayana, is believed to be closer to Hampi. There is a peak, that is supposed to be the birthplace of Hanuman.

A visit to Hampi, and all these places, bring out a mixed bag of feelings. The beauty and marvel of these constructions, on one end give you a sense of pride, that you belong to a culture that *ruled*! In every sense of the word. On the other, we just have to satiate ourselves with only these remains. We are just left to *imagine*, how this kingdom may have been in its days of glory. We walk along the left overs, that serve as a stark reminder of man's greed. The greed of power, can be that strong ....... that constructions that were meant to be timeless ........ were destroyed abruptly.

Each pillar, stone in this place has a tale to narrate. A tale of how it had witnessed, the best of the craftsmen, who shaped it ...... the best of the kingdoms, it was a part of ......... the best of the times, it has been in .........and the greed of a few men, that destroyed it.

Hampi, used to be the venue for Dasara. Mahanavami Dibba, is a platform, where .....the commoners, used to be seated to watch the Dasara celebrations conducted before them.

Seated, on that platform ............ what one can see now ...... is just a celebration of man's greed ........ and the fruits of it, which has rendered marvels as rubbles ......! The contrast couldn't have been any more stark ....!

Indeed ........it was an U ......F......W!

Legend : UFW, UnForgettable Weekends, initiative of Karnataka Tourism.

Let's Rock Hampi - Part II

An early morning drive to Vidhana Soudha.........
The seat of power in the state's capital, could not have been any more, majestic. The towering stucture, indeed looks splendid against the sun rays, early morning. It was an apt location to begin our journey to the ancient ruins. Arun Pai of BangaloreWalks, neatly summarised the journey, as a visit to the then seat of power of Vijayanagar Empire, Hampi, from today's seat of power. I couldn't agree more. The band's rendition of "Apara Keerthiye ......" was splendid. It was backed up with the theme song .... "Let's Rock Hampi ....." . Cameras, media, the who-is-who of culture and tourism of Karnataka, were in to make the event a grand success. We even got tips to visit certain individuals .......ah ..... :-). We were flagged off by the minister for culture and tourism.

The pride of Bengalooru

Suresh, our driver seemed more of a test driver for Chevrolet. Yeah, they may not be a big team in motorsports, but fear not, Suresh is around to prove how good their test drivers are....! As he floored the accelerator pedal we were transported from Zero to Fun in no time. The roads to ruins were definitely not in ruins ... which made the entire experience awesome!! The next stop was Dabbaspet, near Tumkur, where a sumptous breakfast was awaiting us. The officials did a damn neat job of organising the entire event. Their eye for detail and the shots at perfection did not go unnoticed. The roads from Tumkur, was a pleasure to drive on.

Windmill Farm, along the way.

It was a spectacular sight. The windmill farm extended for kilometres ... together. If one was amazed at how, the power of wind was harnessed, to divert it to other purposes......... i had a far more intriguing concept to digest. There were folks around, who tried to convince me that a windmill had to be pictured from the front ..... :O. (;-)) Yes, this is stuff straight out of Jay's believe it or not! ;-).

A peak ... Let's call it Jay Rayara Betta ..... :-)

What, you say, that it resembles my name? Huh? It's all in the eyes of the mouse holder .. i tell ya .... :-).

Chitradurga, was our next pit stop. We had small briefings by the Commissoner of Chitradurga, and a performance by the Bangalore Walks, which explained the legend of Obavva, the woman who had stood fort and beat the invaders to pulp, with her Onake. ( A cylindrical household tool, used to gnash chillies) .

We were then escorted to the fort by the police in our caravan. The welcome, that Chitradurga citizens gave had us all, spellbound to say the least. Garlands, media, crowd ..... oh! It was all happenning and faster than what one could take it in. The Chitradurga fort, stood majestic. It was apparently self sufficient in its days of yore and had withstood many attacks. We were also visually treated, to the acts of a dare devil, who went by the nick, Kothiraja. His exploits on embarking tall pillars and rocks, without any rig or support were commendable!!

Chitradurga Mint. On a rainy day, it is said even now people find gold here. Ah ... is this called, raining gold? ;-)

Ouch, The Obavva Kindi! The modern Obavva's manage pretty much with water bottles!!

A lunch, served by the townsfolk, dressed ethnically, by the lake side at Chandravali, was a welcome surprise. Rajasthani and Gujurati food ..... Awesome .....!

Our (test?) driver, continued his mindless assault on the roads, as we were sprinting way ahead of our convoy. Suddenly, the vehicle switched off ... on the move ....! It was the vehicle's way of resisiting any assault on it!! Neverthless, we were stranded and with us we brought the whole convoy to halt. The organisers had other plans already. We were split and asked to board vehicles which had vacant seats and we were resuming our journey towards ...... ThungaBadra dam. The plan was to witness sunset at that Vaykunta, the guesthouse that overlooks the TB dam. Fate, had other plans in mind and we were denied the same.

Sunset Point. Ah you fell for it? This is no sunset point and all ... ;-).

The next landmark in our landscape was Vittala Temple. The place was a marvel. The Archeological Survey of India, is doing a brilliant job of restoring the remains of the once marvellous empire. The illuminated pathway, was a brilliant contrast to the darkness that engulfed us. This temple, was very famous for its musical pillars. The pillars carved in stones, emnate the building blocks of Carnatic music, the jhal tarang, the ghattam , the bell and et all ........ The same material was used in all the pillars and it just goes about to show, the brilliance of the architects. The only difference was the space between pillars, the way they were cut and the distance to the main pillar .......! Brilliance ...... pillarified ...!

The Stone Chariot, Vitthala

The temple was being illuminated, specially! It was a sight to watch! Watch this ........

The Vitthala .. in its glory .....

Are you all done with admiring the picture above? No? Okie ... I ' ll give you some more time .....! :-)

The temple, in its days of yore had diamond stalls on the outside!! Also, outside there is a King's Balance. These folks always, traded in the name of the King and God. All the measurements were done in the King's balance, with God as witness, thereby ensuring no one cheated! Wow ........! In short they believed, " In god we trust, for all the rest, we use the King's Balance".

One more .. visual treat ....

You could get more about Hampi, from our prinicpal correspondant! Right ,, sush ......? ;-)

It was a wonderful experience. As we headed back, to Kamalapur, we already had a cultural programme awaiting us. This was followed by some rip roaring mimicry. Dinner was served and that was doubled with music for us as well .....! What more can we have asked for? The songs were just getting better. Before, Na .. could go on with her debut, "pehla nasha..." ,We were informed that the 11 30 curfew did not exist and just before we could savour it ... we had to leave........ as our accomodation was at a different location!! It was a pretty eventful day and every ounce (there are lots ...) of me could do with even some more .......:-) Oh .. what a day it was ..... :-)

Monday, November 06, 2006

Let's Rock Hampi - Part I

It was a dull Tuesday morning, when I heard the question popped in the air. (Quite literally) . On any other day i would have switched channels and moved on .....! There was something about this contest...... that appealed to me. Something, that prompted me to go for it.

Was it because, i wanted a *break*? Was it because i knew i would make it? Was it because i had nothing much to do on a Tuesday morning? Huh? I guess ....... it was a combination of all these. Anyway, i gave it a shot.

Lo, in just a few minutes, i was on air and i won myself a pass for the 'Let's Rock Hampi' campaign. Little did i realize what was in store for me ..... then. I was just excited about this entire ...... trip!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Let’s crawl on Hosur road ......

Leaving Ecity, a place we almost call home,
We head to Hosur road, ours to fume,
Steeped in jams, water clogs and time,
A cursed road ….. in its PRIME!!!

We’re crawling on the Highway,
We’re the IT caravan,
Mundhe nuggi saar,
We’re the IT caravan,
From aaga to eega,

Like a never ending saga,
Let’s crawl on Hosur road,
We’re the IT caravan,
We’re ……. The………….. IT……… caravan,

Silkboardu, the flyover stands tall,
Watch buses try in vain to scale and fall,
Jams wind like a snake,
And in its days of yore,
It has seen some sakkath,
Water clogging, jam and BORE!!!

“Comone everybody ……..*

We’re crawling on the Highway,
We’re the IT caravan,
Mundhe nuggi saar,
We’re the IT caravan,
From aaga to eega,
Like a never ending saga,
Let’s crawl on Hosur road,
We’re the IT caravan,
We’re ……. The………….. IT……… caravan

Hey, guys, on my trip to Hampi, i heard a song called, ‘Let’s Rock Hampi. On the same style and beat, I ve made this song. Apologies to Bangalore Walks band, Kini, Mani and Roopa /Arun Pai. I ve just shared the turmoil of a software Engineer on Hosur Road.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Everyone's Free .....

Chanced upon a track by Baz Luhrmann, called "Everyone's Free - To Wear Sunscreen".

Ladies and Gentlemen of the class of '99.....Wear Sunscreen

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience...

I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth;
Oh never mind; you will not understand the power of beauty of your youth until they have faded. But trust me, in 20 years you'll look back at the photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked...

You're not as fat as you imagine.

Don't worry about the future;
or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind; the kind that blindside you at 4pm on some idle Tuesday.

Do one thing everyday that scares you.


Don't be reckless with other people's hearts, don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.

Don't waste your time on jealousy;
sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind...the race is long, and in the end, it's only with yourself.

Remember the compliments you receive, forget the insults; if you succeed in doing this, tell me how.

Keep your old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.


Don't feel guilty if you don't know what you want to do with your life... the most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40 year olds I know still don't.

Get plenty of calcium

Be kind to your knees, you'll miss them when they're gone.

Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't, maybe you'll have children, maybe you won't, maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary...

Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either- your choices are half chance, so are everybody else's.

Enjoy your body, use it every way you can... don't be afraid of it, or what other people think of it, it's the greatest instrument you'll ever own.

Dance... even if you have nowhere to do it but in your own living room.

Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.

Do not read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.

Get to know your parents, you never know when they'll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings; they are the best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future. Understand that friends come and go, but for the precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young.

Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard.
Live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.


Accept certain inalienable truths, prices will rise, politicians will philander, you too will get old, and when you do you'll fantasize that when you were young prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders.

Respect your elders.

Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund, maybe you have a wealthy spouse; but you never know when either one might run out.

Don't mess too much with your hair, or by the time it's 40, it will look 85.

Be careful whose advice you buy, but, be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it's worth.

But trust me on the sunscreen...

The video of the song can be viewed here ....

Video Courtesy : You Tube

A neat one .. i must say ... ... :-)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Simmering beneath the ground .....

Change, the universal truth is constant too!

What happens when this truth begins to experiment in a relationship? All of us, have a comfort zone and do not like to be miffed in that zone. The zone is where "you" are "YOU"! Most of us resist change, even though, sometimes that change is just for our betterment! We just want to be left the way we are .......

In one of our discussions, I remember Vasanth mentioning, "every individual is like a religion" . Pretty profound statement. Every individual has his/her own code of conduct. This conduct has evolved over time, based on the upbringing, culture, experiences that individual has been exposed to. What may be holy to some may be satanic to others. To make matters worse, there is no absolute of what's right or what's wrong! Whenever, one individual tries to manipulate others, in supporting his/her school of thought, there would be resistance.

Matters, which seem trivial on the exterior, sometimes, are the ones that cause devastating effects. When the individual is "driven" to change , he/she may not be able to reisist it instantly as there could be multiple layers of pressure on them. It could be peer pressure, attempt at sounding neanderthal, being conservative, being flamboyant, being brash ..... and so on .......... Though at that point the individual, seems to accept the situation, it has indeed scarred him/her. The individual already has begun to feel that he/she has "compromised" to a certain degree! Further acts .. of change would result in more scars and induce wounds on almost healed scars ....... Till the point that it is no longer acceptable by one of the individuals ........... and then ...... before you know it ........ the relationship begins to collapse. Soon, it's all over!

A discussion in time and identifying the changes that seem to be affecting a relationship .... and taking corrective action early on seems the only solution to it. If individuals 'agree to disagree' , it would solve most such issues. Simmering beneath the ground, change always exists in a molten state. It's upto the individuals to realize the same and plan accordingly.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

On a day like .......

A few days back, was probably my "bad" day! No, it was not "bad" like, "hey that movie is 'bad'" , but more of ..... "hey , this parachute dosen't seem to open up!" ... "OH THAT"S BAAAD".

Well, yeah like all good day's, that day too began well, and progressed to getting better, till i revved up my bike and picked up some pace. Cruised along Airport road, Inner ring road and lo .. there began a traffic jam. A good samaritan informed me the vehicle's back wheels' tyre was deflated. Now, that's bad! That's because, Hosur road, is hell for even the best of bikers and fittest of the bikes. My bike on the other hand ..... was crippled! Inflating, the tyres, seemed a hotfix and i carried on.

I wouldn't normally recommend biking on Hosur road (HR). Lorry and Bus drivers, consider HR as Suzuka during the testing weekend! They outsmart each other, find innovative means to drive, cause accidents, touch max speeds, check braking skills, slingshot, bring down barricades and pretty much do stuff, which would have disqualified them their licensce, if done during the test. (Or would it?! ) My friend had an interview appointment and thus, i had to bike.

All seemed well and good, till about quarter to four, when i left office heading towards HR. At the parking lot, the back tyre was flat! At my organisation, we boast of a self sufficient, Multi layer parking lot, whose air pump had to give way just that day! Pushing along, for another kilometer, I found a puncture repair shop in the service lane. After some examination and testing, the guy there came up with the theory that it was not a puncture, and i had parked the vehicle in the "heat'' (??!) for long! He also suggested, that i needn't change it right away! I tugged along joining the procession, on HR. Well, procession, that's how the traffic tugs along!

Just a few kilometers, on that road, the tyre gave way! On a National Highway, where people fly past, i was tugging a vehicle with a flat tyre! Luckily, i spotted , a petrol bunk where i thought i could just inflate it and continue along! That was not to be. The tube has given way and i was now forced to change it! One respite was a puncture shop close by. The owner of this puncture shop seemed a thug. He was looking around for cops and pushing a set of lorrt tyre (?) into his mini truck to be taken out! I had to get a new tyre. My bike was in its most vulnerable state, with a tyre removed and i was suppossed to get a tyre, leaving the bike with these thugs! Universe was having a blast that day! At my expense !

I had to get to the other side, of HR. Now, vehicles on HR do not show, any mercy to pedestrians. Once, you cross that road, you feel, you are the ONE! Well, that's how Neo should have felt when he dodged bullets! But, you do have a few vehicles, that speak to us in the same tone, Trinity, spoke to an Agent, "Dodge this ..... "! Well , nevertheless, with just my bike and its state, in mind, i wanted to get back ASAP . There was just one Hero Honda showroom! My luck seemed running out! My bike was a Bajaj! :-|. Also, i was out of cash and only my debit card to my rescue. The guy in the store seemed understanding and i was more than happy that they accepted the card. But his assistant din't. She seemed to have run out of paper roll for the card swiper! After 20 minutes, she managed to locate it! Damn! My mind, had all the worst case scenarios worked out ..... my bike wouldn't be there. It's all over kinds. Anyway, i rushed back. Yeah, my vehicle was there and the thug had stayed back to just fix my bike!

Then for the last of the surprises, the tyre sizes did not match! Although, this guy did manage to put accross the tyre finally! I tugged along joined the procession and reached home at 7 30 pm!

My friend's interview appointment had to be cancelled. Traffic jams. Tyre puntures. Sidy shop. Assistant running out of paper rolls. Hosur road. Misfit tyre ..... Could the day have been any better ......?

Friday, September 29, 2006

Atlas shrugged?

Thurday's aren't days, one associates with fun. Generally. Even, if previously, I did have that impression about thursday, it turned out to be a myth.

On invitation from a friend of mine, I decided to join her in the Dandia celebrations hosted by her organisation. She had roped in quite a few of our friends too. Dance to me, is cricket to Michael Schumacher. Haven't i told you that i am the Emperor, of the Empire of two left legged? I haven't? Okie, that's me. For all those, who smirked, who do you think you are judging? Huh? :-)

The amphitheatre (?) where the event was hosted , contained (or did it? ;-)) a vibrant crowd. The event unleashed the "dancers" , who welcomed the break from rigmarole. The jockey manipulated the crowd to his whims and fancies, not that we begged to differ anyway! From the traditional Dandia numbers, there was a smooth(?) transition to Bollywood numbers, culminating with the disco dandia.

There was something about the atmosphere. It was charged up! The gang members were all crackers of enthusiasm. The music lasted long enough, the energy never seemed to die down. All this may a little too trivial to some of you guys who can 'groove'. To borrow, a cliche, "It may be small steps to you all, but its a gaint leap to me" . :-) . Ah, some gyrations i witnessed , yesterday, made me even forget " jhatkas" of Urmila. Yes, Urmila of Rangeela fame.

Overall, i relished every moment. Thanks to the gang , i had joined up with. Oh, by the way if you guys experienced some mild tremors in and around Bangalore, between 7 - 9 pm yesterday, I take responsibility for the same. :-) .

Valuable lessons, I learnt yesterday.

a) Anyone can dance. The emperor, says so. Trust him!
b) All they need is a conducive environment. :-)
c) When it rains, it pours.
d) Thursday's aren't that bad, after all.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Lage Raho ....

A simple story. The protagonist , inspired by the Mahatma, experiences hallucinations. Unaware, that he is hallucianting, he feels, he can communicate with the Mahatma. The inspiration, he has drawn from the man, makes him impart this to the rest.

The message in the movie, was not like a sugar coated bitter pill, but more of a sugar coated calcium tablet, with loads of chocolate layers in between. The movie does not preach, but just reminds us of the values , that we must not have forgotten in the first place. The director, has indeed taken a big risk, in casting Gandhi as one of the characters around whom the movie revolves. The movie, is clean. It is a thorough entertainer. The chemistry amongst characters, the dialogue delivery, the screen play ........ it's composed of the right ingredients, to make a thoroughly lovable movie.

This is a movie, that kind of makes you ponder about this enigma called Gandhi. Will Gandhiism actually work, in today's world that is strewn with violence? Was there a clear cut understanding of what was Gandhiism? Or was Gandhiism, just a collection of *best practices* from the religious scriptures, and epics? Was the Satyagraha, a passive means to solicit victory? Was he a lateral thinker amongst his contemporaries, that he devised a means that was unthinkable as a path to victory? Is tolerance, an act of bravery? Is n't Honesty, giving up your right to be a survivor? The protagonist, in real life, being embroiled in a controversy, that aimed to destroy the very fabric the Mahatma, intended others to adorn? An irony?

Ah, this movie makes you think, albeit subtely. "Lage Raho Munnabhai" ............ the title seems to be a stab at "Lage Raho 'Insert your Name Here' " ......to the values that were once *noble* and now ..... out of vogue..........

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Saas Bahu??!

What do you want to hear first? Good news or Bad news?

Time's running out ............! Okie .... I ve made up my mind ......

The bad news ........

I watched the movie KANK, last weekend!

I pause ......so that you all could heave a collective SIGH.

You, the one who is so shocked at the statement above, i am talking to you. I did not say, "I trained Schumi to drive"! Stop giving that look!

Maybe some of you all could take time and advise me that I shouldn't have watched it in the first place. Those of you all, who advised me strongly not to watch this movie, from across the world, I know i let you all down! Sorry! Yes, I was abducted by a group of die hard Abhishek Bachhan fans! Yes, they screamed when John Abraham made an appearance on screen too! Yes, yes for once ................I felt i was subdued, i watched the movie without creating a ruckus. I couldn't join the gang!

Yes, now the good news, this is not a review of the film!

Okie, stop the hoorays! It's okie ....! :-)

This is about a couple i saw at the ticket counter. Two women aged about 50 and 65. The elderly amongst them, was waiting out of line. The woman in line, seemed enthusiatic and could beat all the college students in line before her, hands down with her enthusiasm !

She seems to be totally excited and kept conversing to .....

She: Is this for counter for 11 15 AM show?
Me : Yes.
She : 2 15 shows and evening shows sold out eh?
me : Yes, they are ......
(She Talking to the elderly person (EP))
She : Everyone, says the movie is just okie... .. but we need to see for ourselves .. naah ma?
EP smiles .
(To me)
She : This is my mother in law.
(An affectionate smile)
(To the guy in the counter)
She : Two balcony tickets please. How much? 100 each eh?

Ah ........ I thought!

Wow, Saas Bahu ........! Ekta Kapoor, better re- invent herself ....!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Seasons .....

It's spring!
In the lives of some people i know .....

Upbeat, bright and filled with life !
They are so looking forward to the summer ahead!

It's Summer
In the lives of some people i know .....

The brightness, is welcome. Sometimes, the humidity joins hands and results in sultry conditions ! Nevertheless, its great to bask in it!

But, somewhere ..... they just want a change! Rain perhaps .....

It's rainy
In the lives of some people i know .....

From, drops of it,which they relished, till the point, it'ss almost drowning them ...! They aren't enjoying it anymore! It's pouring ....!

Oh, enough of all this rain ......... they claim!

It's autumn
In the lives of some people i know .....

Downbeat, and demotivated. They just need a new lease of life !

It's Winter
In the lives of some people i know .....

Cold, chilling and bitter, are their stories at this point!
They seem to be in constant search for something! Warmth, perhaps!

Thus, time moves, like a windshield on a bug, i read somewhere. True, perhaps! Hopefully, this Season of life, is better for these folks!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006



Is there a pattern that universe follows?

Or is it random?

Or ............. is randomness a pattern by itself?

Monday, July 17, 2006

Frozen .....

Frozen ......! There, a moment captured ! Though, insignificant at that point ... frozen moments can make time travel a reality. Transported magically , to the point when this moment was captured ....... one has an oppurtunity to ...... live ..... them again .......!

Chaos in tranquility.

A second chance to live.....

A new beginning......

A weird moment. ;-) Serve and Volley.

A moment to reclaim .....

Transitition .....

Does dusk indicate the gloom at the end of a day .... or is it the phase before beginning of another, probably better day?

A moment to celebrate ....

A moment to cherish .....

A moment to scale ....

A moment to ..... awe!

William Wordsworth, rightly said in his poem Daffodils,

"In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils. "

I guess, that holds good for these frozen moments as well ......

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

100 ....

Dictionary defines,

Scintillations (n) : rapid change in brightness; a brief spark or flash

Life ....... is a journey. In this journey you do come across, a host of individuals, some make a mark, some fade away ............. Experiences, some good, some bad ...... and some just nostalgic. Events, some great, some good and ....... some you just wish ... you hadn't been there. Encounters, some welcome, some ...... not so and the rest ...... you just wonder ... if life's playing a cruel joke!

Thus, if life were a starry sky, all the above mentioned would definitely be responsible for the scintillations in them! Hence, the name of this blog. My life's scintillations .......... are the one's spoken about in this blogspace!

Scintillations has registered, the moments of mine that cover the entire spectra of emotions i.e. venting out my frustration, interesting encounters, ah......, take a stab, take a stand, nostalgia, On a High, life's melody , a travelogue and .......a record of individuals who made a mark.

This blogspace has also bought about a few of them closer too. I' ve made a lot aquaintances and a few friends through this space. Scintillations would continue, to be a prism through which i look at life. The image is refracted for sure ............. but hey, it does produce a spectrum! :-)

PS: 100 posts till date ....! ;-). Many sure to follow!

Friday, June 30, 2006

Migration ....

Today, it seems as though it is the day of MIGRATION!

Quite a few of them i know are reloicating today.

Divs, a good friend of mine is leaving this weekend. She's somone, with wit and humor in abundance.Most of the conversations we have had can be featured on Humor sections of most publications! The fights, the arguments, the wierd talk (not a typo ... it is that weird :-)) ...................ah ....... she will be missed!

Chitra, another of the rare kind of buddies ..... is relocating too, although for a brief while (?!). An avid blogger, she is spontaneous by nature. Opinionated, strangely funny and humorous, she possess most of the ingredients that would be needed to make a good friend!

A couple of aquaintances are leaving on assignments, this weekend too.

Another, is quitting the firm we work for , and moving on.

It's Migration ..... indeed!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Life is short .....

A few month's back, a popular south indian festival was the day I met this girl. It was a bad day at work, I was just planning for a quiet journey back home. I was not too keen to have a conversation that day. That's when she came in .........

She : Hai!
Me : Hai ......
She : So ....?
Me : ??
She : It's a long journey back and i don't like to go back "quiet"!
Me : Oh ....
She : Have you ever wondered .... all the leaders who have visited here have planted trees?
Me : Yeah ... so?
She : Bill Gates has planted a Bonsaii plant though!!
She : He he he
Me : ???
She : Well, for his empire he should have planted Bamboo or something!! Grows fast, don't ya think?
Me : Hmm...........
She : Oh, when exactly do you "experienced" folks stop appreciating humor ......

Well, that was the first meet .........

Another ...

She : You are not a part of the Quiz club?
Me : No?
She : Oh, you the experienced guy who is just on the call with Onsite all the time?

Well, i was a bit taken aback by the audacity of somone who is just an aquaintance. But somewhere .......... there ....... she had a point ...! I have met her quite a few occassions and the conversations have been quite diverse. From music to recruitment drives, from traffic flows to conspiracy theories, from Beethoven to plagiarism in music industry, from "work" to "life" ........ whetever be the topic, here was a girl who was filled with life ......and had boundless energy! To, a certain level where ......... it was just ......... contagious! It was almost two weeks since i had met her ...... I recieved a mail, from the ToastMaster's Club, in my Organisation ......

An excerpt

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing”. Well that’s exactly how it should be. One long and adventurous journey where every moment was lived to its fullest. And that once you leave there are NO REGRETS. The more difficult is the challenge, the sweeter are the rewards. It’s the thrill of rising up to the challenge and beating it in its face that becomes the prize. It’s overcoming your fear and then beating then all together. And that feeling that moment is what redefines a person. To me this moment of truth was when I was in the cockpit of a glider, airborne for the very first time. And by the time successfully completed that first sortie of mine, Ladies and gentlemen, I was a changed person.

- Shweta Jha

The 149th Meeting of the Infosys Toastmasters Club is dedicated to the Memory of Shweta Jha. We invite everyone who has known Shweta Jha to attend this Meeting and share your experiences. "

Surprised at the way in which the invite was drafted,(mentioning an excerpt from her), I mail her. There is no response .........! Slightly concerned .....I call up a common friend .... who confirmed the news that on June 10, when off to a project party, to Shivanasamudram, she had slipped from the rocks and had lost her life .........!!

Life .......... is indeed short! It sure is!

May her soul rest in peace!!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Shaadi se pehle .....

Yeah, yeah ..... for all those who are wondering, whether, this post is a review of the movie with the same name, do not panic, this isn't ! Also, that movie did not deserve,a review is an aside!! This post is about, ad's , some select matrimonial ads ......... and the broad category they can be classified under .....

No changes have been made to the content taken from the site, names have been changed to protect identities. ">>" are comments/clarifications/doubts that occurred to me when I read these .......

1) "Crystal" and "Opinionated":

About our daughter:

Our daughter is very fair, 5 feet 6 inches tall and possesses very warm qualities. She is a certified health specialist and we definitely prefer her partner to hail from a medical profession- MBBS, MD or surgeons. She is currently pursuing her degree in alternative medicine (N. D. ) that would give her the initials of a traditional naturopathic doctor. Her accomplishments are endless and to know more, please contact us. She is easy-going, moderately religious, ambitious, family-oriented and an open minded girl with a calm nature. If you would like to know more, please contact us so that we can pursue further.

About the partner we are looking for:

The boy should be fair (Very fair a plus!), handsome and should possess warm qualities. Though we prefer hyderabad based families, we are also open to proposals from families based abroad whose origin should be either from New Delhi, Karnataka and Maharashtra. We are seriously considering doctors from Hyderabad. Please reach us through our contact information below with at least two pictures and biodata.

About us:

We are a respectable hyderabadi family, well-settled in ABS.

>> Very fair a plus??! Okie ... how is this "very fair" determined?

2) I-know-who-I-am-and-i-know-what-i-want:

See can really write a lot but there is no point. cause irrespective of what i have in me or think of me and whatever i am looking for in a person i would want to get married to,the most important thing is that vibes should match. compatibility has to be there. selfless care and concern with immense respect and complete faith. is what will result into a valid, smooth and may be beautiful companionship.by anychance we click and decide to spend our lives together we will certainly take care of each others families interest and not just care for each other but care for each others situations as well as i hear from my elders that marriages are not between two individuals but two situations,,,, two families. all we can do is deal with each others situation gracefully and honestly

>> Am I Frank enough?

3) i-want..........:

Hi my name is XYZ, i m a rajput and working in call center in dehli.I love listening to music and indain army.My father was an army personal and my elder brother he is in army .I m lookin for an army officer with good personality.Moreover an honest person with kind heart.

I m afun loving person enjoy life as it comes to me confident whatever i do like freaking out with freids but love my family alot.wants to contact me then send mail.

>> It's time somone started a matrimonial site where spell check was free!

4) Understand-who?:

looking for smart partner age between 23-25 yrs. should understand me and my family both.

>> Okie!

5) Resume - matrimonal-ad:

Iam native of Andhra Pradesh and settled in Mumbai.I have completed Btech computer science and Engineering.I am working in MNC in Mumbai since 7 years. In these 7 years i went to US on deputation for 3 years 3 times.I worked for telecom,oracle apps etc.Currently iam working in Telecom.Also,planning to travel to US this year end with H1B.Father is retired executive officer.Mother house wife.I have 1 elder sister and 2 elder brothers.

>> In response to your ad placed in Times Ascent .... i would like to enclose my matrimonial ad ........ Nice try, if not the alliance, a job is for sure!

6) Brief :

i want a smart and a person with a good sense of humour.for a journalist like me

>> I am sure, this journalist works on the "snippets" column!

7) Do you get confused easily? :

I was interested in married that boy and it was lovable boy like hindu so you will require to love me.

>> No comments!

8) Global :

I am a 31yr.MD,never married, ht.5'6", slim, tall, athletic,Indian-brahmin,raised in US. Looking for a Professional, 5'8" or taller, good family values,East&West mix, interested in:Indian,or North or South American or European, or Oriental. Religion,caste no bar.

>> Can somone ever reject such a global citizen?

9) The Regular:

Hi! its noneotherthan DBG KKK here.well i have completed graduation n waiting for my result of B.Ed. i follow simple living high thinking. I m looking for a kayastha guy who is smart,self dependable qualified n must b frm well reputed family.

>> None other than?!

10) Simple:

hai this is XTR YUS i am looking for good person handsome well educated and understanding . my self i am good looking girl .

>> Any questions, anyone??

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Leveller .....

Airport Road, Bangalore. This picture should go down in history. Wonder, when this was taken, because not even at midnight you would be assured of such a shot, offlate in Airport Road. Intel, Huawei, Sykes, Ness, HAL,Reuters,NAL,Texas Instrumentation...... work out of offices along this road, resulting in bumper to bumper traffic. Do these trees still exist there?

Ah, if Airport Road were a star , welcome to its galaxy. Hosur road. Electronic City the hub of IT firms lies along this road. Needless, to explain more, picture is worth .... a million words. No exaggeration or picture manipulation. This is the case, somedays.

Well, i did not get suitable pictures for quite some other junctions that face heavy traffic. Considering the "roles" they play in lives of folks who commute using them , they can not go unmentioned!

Marathahalli Bridge : Would soon enter the record books. It s a 700 metres stretch, but a nerve centre as it connects routes that have increased traffic flows.

Jam Factory : Ah... whoever named that ...... is definitely a visionary.

Yeah, the city's infrastructure is being tested. There are projects that are being undertaken to address these issues. Anyway, we do spend a significant part of our lives commuting! As goes this cartoon ......

Source : http://www.geocities.com/nkiruthikkumar/img/bangalore-traffic-2.gif

Source : http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v292/arjunprabhu/etc/HosurRoad004_t.jpg

James Shirley, in one of his poetic works claims, Death is a leveller. Well, Shirley, guess what, these traffic jams are levellers in their own rights too. Just take a stroll along these junctions i have mentioned, and you would see that for yourself!

Update : The link now points to the poem I mentioned !

Monday, June 12, 2006

Big Fish - Review

Big Fish, would undoubtedly be, one of my all time favourite films! This movie was released in the year 2003.

This movie explores the relationship of a dad and son who have fallen apart. The father is an extremly creative story teller, but his stories are slightly more on an exaggerated scale! His stories are interesting and people awe at his skills, at story telling. The son, who apparently relished these stories as a child, finds them, ridiculous and insane at this point of time! He falls out with his father, as he feels, all his father can come up with are stories, which are far from reality!

His dad's stories include a village where people were always happy, meeting a 14 foot giant, a manager of a circus who changed to a "fox" at night times, catching a BIG FISH alone ..... .and so on ........ (Described visually to great detail..... Tim Bourton captures all this beautifully .....)

The son comes down, to see his ailing father, and refuses to change his opinion about his dad, as his dad just wont stop those stories or accepting that the stories are "exaggerated". His father passes away, with the son still holding, all the stories his dad had told him as figments of his father's imagination!!

Well...... thats when the plot takes an interesting twist. All the characters, that his dad had talked about, in his stories ,actually turn up to the funeral! It's overwhelming, for the son, who did not "believe" his dad, all the while, when all the time he had been just speaking the truth!

Now if you are actually wondering,why a review of a movie that was released long back, well, its an awesome and must watch movie. A worthy addition to your DVD collection. Worth a watch, its a movie that will strike a chord for sure!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


Yeah, from quite sometime, have been smitten by the work bug and hence the irregularity in the updation of this blog. From the drafts ...........

So, the prayers of all the single, jobless, "so want to be there" ..... cult is answered. Orkut, the "network" powered by Google has arrived. With 20,053,714 , the list just keeps growing! Yes, the scrap book is just another "open source" , giving others .....a peek view to what's hapenning in one's life!

The fact about being in that community is, it gives you a sense of belonging! Well, it makes you feel better. You probably thought there were very few folks who liked Sudoku, or the driving skills of Kimi, or believed Bangalore is Haven, or felt one should, "Ganchali Bidu, Kannada mathadu", or relished Jazz, or liked Curd rice and pickles, or were jingoistic, or adored a language ....... the list goes on! You are wrong! Orkut, also goes out of its way to prove the fact, you aren't the only jobless one around!

Oh, and the "Recently Visited" feature, was just thrown open the day i had visited the profile of an aquaintance, whom i had distanced quite sometime ago! So, much for luck because that person felt i was trying to get back!!

We were talking of jobless folks out there. One of the members of this community scraps another colleague of mine, "Hey ..... Did you visit my profile?".

Whoa! I am feeling much better. I am not that jobless as that "scrapper" atleast!! So, whats your Orkut Id? Er ....... I would be relatively free in the days to come !! I promise, i wont ask, "Hey ..... Did you visit my profile?" :D

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Hearsay ......

Mahabharat, an epic 1300 verses, 2109 chapters and eighteen divisions measures up as one of the greatest epics. This epic has been translated to many languages and indeed a source of inspiration to many .......

The hearsay , I encountered had a reference to an instance from this epic, when it were being staged in a junior school.

The scene that was being enacted was the one in which Dushasana humiliates Draupadi. The scene was perfomed by a group of guys in their middle school. In the play, Draupadi's evokes Krishna's blessings to overcome the humiliation. Lord Krishna comes to her rescue by handing over an endless garment , thus avoiding the humiliation, she otherwise would have had to undergo.

When this scene was being perfomed on stage, the guy playing the part of Dushasana got a bit overzealous and tugged on the garment , "Draupadi" had adorned. The tugging gave way and the garment fell loose. In what could have turned out as a panic situation, the guy who played "Draupadi" just held his nerve. He was up on stage with quite a lot of people watching the play and to his shock .. the "saree" he was in was off .. thanks to the over zealous "Dushasana". That's when this "draupadi" , displays his "spontaneous" side.

Looking up , he apparently said .... " Hey Krishna, I just asked you for more of a garment, and you ....... you ..... to save me from all this humiliation have changed my gender itself!!! Thank You .. Lord ... Thank you!! "

Apparently the applause did 'nt die down for quite a while ......... :-)

Friday, May 19, 2006

Heights ...... - Part III

The previous night we visited Triveni Sangam, a place where three rivers met.

Early the next day was reserved for a visit to a park that goes by the name of "Raja's Seat" translated means "King's Seat". Well, I enquired about it and discovered it was "park" and in yester years king's used to visit this place at leisure. The view from this place, which is quite elevated is like this ............

and this ............

It was time to visit some popular tourist sites. On our way we found a tusker relishing his meal.
We were off to a place called "Dubare". A place where one can cool his heels in water and take on elephant rides. DUBARE is an island that can be commuted by boat or one can use a pathway and commute by foot. We chose the boat ride one way and walked back the opposite side.

Travel by boat ............

Beat the Summer heat .........

The floral side of Dubare ......

Relaxed in the water for sometime and we were off to the Tibetean Monastery at Kushalanagar.

The Monastery ........

On the inside .......

Paintings that adorn the walls ......

Their music .........

The towering Buddha stands at 60 feet and the temple is called popularly as the Golden Temple. With this, our trip to Coorg was coming to an end. Now, it was back to Bangalore. On the way we visited the Nimishamba temple, off Mysore Bangalore Highway.

As we were heading back , we encountered a huge pile up of traffic. Ah ..... reality creeps in!

This trip has given me some fond memories. Somewhere , all these memories are etched in the most indelible state of my mind ....... Somewhere ......... the term "Coorg" would no longer just evoke " a place I've heard off "feeling , it would infact evoke, "Oh ... I ve been there and it was awesome" feeling. It was a memorable trip and yeah due credits to all the folks who just let it be that way. :-)

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Heights ...... - Part II

Coorg,The Scotland of India. Er ..... it should actually read, Scotland, Coorg to Rest of the World. :-) A town that wakes up to mist most times of the year, except when rain god decides to flex his muscles. A laidback town in South Karnataka. Coffee plantations seem to be the predominant occupation , whereas honey processing and small enterprises that deal with food processing that work out of home seem to be the alternate choices. Er .. to stop this being a documentary........ For more details please visit this site.

Tourism seems to be another occupation here and we had no problems with the accomodation. We stayed in a house that was owned by Sumi and Venu Ponappa. Their kids seems to like the attention we were giving them. Ashiqa Bhojamma and Shreyas were their names! They had a neat little garden and the house overlooked the peaks. We heard a trivia that people in that region are given two names each! :o

About 9 am we began our journey to the base of Tadiyandamol, until which the path is motorable. We had hired a "guide" to this trek on the advise of the folks out there, that we may probably loose our way out there. Our guide seemed to have information only about the peak and no other place within Coorg. Thus , after a small amount of "misguiding" by him we were off track by 12 kms. Reiterating our path, we were back to the base by 11 30 am. Oh, all that misguding was when were in the luxury of our vehicle. Luckily. :D

and then .....we started .........

Our fears that the weather would be a spoil sport , turned out to be just a latent one. The weather was all for us to go ahead and conquer this peak. Oh, is that a tad too bold? Never mind! ;-). Narrow, constricted pathways filled with lush greenery was how the path could best be described.

The path was quite steep and jagged all the way to the top.

We were just walking along the pathway when our guide mentioned that what stood before us was the peak we were to conquer ;-). The sight was just stunning. The mist cleared, making way for us to see the peak we were to climb. This ladies and gentlemen is Tadiyandamol a 1750 metres high peak.

The path along which we scaled seemed to be covered with jagged igneous rocks all the way. The sight was stunning. Mist covers you all the way and the weather is just awesome!! Well from this point it was tiring as we were to trek the steepest incline of this peak. With the reserves of our energies running low, the trek was getting a tad strenous. Oh, wanted to quit at that point . Well, just rubbished that thought aside and decided to move on!!

Then, it hapenned. We were there on top. That was "Heights"! A view from the top!! WHOA! What a feeling it were. The peak conquered. The feeling of making it, despite all the desires to quit, is indeed nice . The catch remains in just covering a small step at a time and not worrying about the big picture! Yeah .. words of wisdom from somone who has been there and done that! :D . Ah ,..... thanks for all the applause! :D

A sumptuous meal at the top. WHOA! We were hungry and the food was just delicious. Relished the meal. Well, after spending some more time on the peak, it was time to move down.

A few of them decided to get down quite earlier than the rest. No issues, but then the guide was with them. Me, Kethan, Kiran and Chitra were the slow coaches. As we kept moving slowly, we realized at a certain point, that we were probably "not" in the right path. A call to laksh's mobile was futile as she had carefully left her mobile with me!! Oh, that was a wonderful moment. In Coorg, lost in a forest during the trek and no source to contact the rest, even when we had mobiles and the range. As, Kiran and chitra kept searching for alternative paths, I wondered what our options were. Maybe we could scale back the peak as that was the only "landmark" around!!

The train of thoughts were broken, by Chitra who discovered one of the paths, was the one we should be taking and that luckily turned out right! Thus, we rejoined our group who seemed to be having fun at a water body!!

The trek was tiring, hectic (maybe coz I am a first timer), gruelling at times. But if i din't have fun at this trek, then I never have had fun!! :D

Now ...... in an example to show what soaps have done to Indian audience .. i would say .................

To be continued .... ;-)