Tag Archive: People

There is a verb “live” and a noun “life”, either of which when used alone makes no impact as much as their usage together; that is “Live Life” This is a small but a strong and complete statement in its own!

When we hear “Live Life”, we all visualize the fun we can have in our lives and another tick in our wish list(s).Yeah!, it is absolutely natural and normal, however don’t you think that living life should honestly be identified with some extraordinary event in an ordinary life?

There are just 5 letters appended before “ordinary” to make it “extraordinary”, nonetheless this “extra” something (read many things) makes ordinary, extraordinary. An extra mile, an extra attempt and an extra consideration makes ordinary extraordinary!

Life often throws up troubles. Coping well is a route of preference and obvious thoughts that determines our worth of life. Standpoint and deed are keys to coping.

Everyone faces difficulties in their lives. Doing something about issues that affect us, in spite of how we feel, is empowering.

Herein I want to quote Bob Dylan Trouble lyrics: Trouble in the city,

“Trouble in the city, trouble out in the farm/you got your rabbit’s foot/you got your good-luck charm. But they can’t help you none, when there’s trouble.”

Yes, both the problem and the solution lies with us!I know some ordinary people and their extraordinary way of “living life” makes me say this and is too ‘awe inspiring’ to keep it within myself.

“No one lives on the top of the mountain. It’s fine to go there occasionally —for inspiration, for new perspectives. But you have to come down. Life is lived in the valleys. That’s where the farms and gardens and orchards are, and where the plowing and the work is done. That’s where you apply the visions you may have glimpsed from the peaks”,said Arthur Gordon. And I completely second this myself,as I relate to myself being the witness of a life around me which I genuinely consider,”Living Life”

One of such person is my maternal uncle,whose way of “living life” is something which has influenced me like any thing. He was barely in his late teens when his father (and my maternal grandfather) expired. He was then the head of the family with responsibility and liabilities of four younger siblings. With no support from anybody around, he believed in himself and gradually grew both financially and spiritually. All the responsibilities of being the eldest were taken care of and life looked like following an ideal trail in due course. He was married to a beautiful lady and he was blessed with a lovely daughter and an adorable son; nothing could have been as sweet as this!

However God has His ways of making his presence felt. Both children were diagnosed with a form of cerebral palsy, wherein they were least likely to be able to walk and take care of themselves at any point of time in their life.The only bright thing was the kids having really sound mental abilities, in fact more than kids of their age;

( though it is not justified to compare them in present times (they being in their teens) with others because of the difference in level of exposure and education of normal kids and them.).But I still identify both the kids as really smart ones,inheriting many qualities of their father

Let me tell you,it might look easy from outside the window,but I know this personally how difficult it is to take care of such special children.And the difference is they are not just taken care of by fulfilling the basic requirements for their survival but also being given an opportunity to learn,study and grow as much as possible.If he would have just made efforts to survive,it would have been still be viewed as a big effort but according to him, that situation of minimum survival is like “given up” and would have been permanent;but his attitude is to keep recovering from the his injuries and start afresh,and when this the way of living this is in real sence “Live Life” realized.Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. The way we deal with it is what makes the difference.

Life looks too long in such situations and ordinary people succumb to such atrocities from God!But this man,showed everyone around how an ordinary person like him can be too tough to perish!He not only accepted that difficult situation,he lived live with beauty;made all efforts to provide education to his children,make them learn computers,fulfilling their wishes,and on top of this,made sure that he also fulfils his other worldly duties expected in normal circumtances.In fact a perfect example of an ideal son,brother,husband father and friend.

Till date he goes out of way to make sure that he does everything which he should do and he does this with elan!I have witness all this and I believe this is called “Living Life” and I believe I can never pen down my imbibed feelings I have for this “extraordinary life” which has touched my life in many ways!

And his life is a real example of a quote from Claude Pepper, “Life is like riding a bicycle. You don’t fall off unless you plan to stop peddling”

Though this is my third south Indian state,I never felt the need of learning the local language as much as I felt its need in my stay in Chennai.
Yes,people…before Chennai I have stayed in Hyderabad and then Bangalore,however in both these cities,I never felt the need to learn Telugu or Kannada respectively as much as I felt its necessity in Chennai.
Nevertheless,I have interest in learning the languages and somehow I manage to catch the meaning of languages,if I listen to it with concentration.And I am thankful of my knowledge of Sanskrit,learnt in school.Though I never scored great in it… :P…And I still remember what our Sanskrit teacher used to say about power of Sanskrit knowledge.
Snap!coming to present times or better to say starting from period of my entry in south India…on my rendezvous with languages Telugu,Kannada and at present Tamil;
I always wanted to learn these languages,however could not learn them to be make fluent use of them.
I remember pestering few of my college friends in Hyderabad to teach me Telugu and in fact they taught me too.First thing I learnt was counting numbers in Telugu…ookati,rendu,mudu,nalgu…. :)then some sentences like…,”what is your name?”..it’s translated as “nee peru enti?”;”bagunara”, “bagunawa”,”matladtadu”,”ivu”,”chappu”,”nidrostundi”,”kuchchu”…and the famous “Entraa!” heard in college days!
Our college had good mix of people from different states and life was easy with Hindi and English and some times the indigenous local Hyderabadi Hindi…”Sahi boltun na!” 😀
However,gradually the initial interest in learning the language,became less and also one of my Telugu friend in college said,she should not teach me any more Telugu,as they will then not be able to speak anything and everything in Telugu when they were in my room with my room-mate 😦 Though they still do not know I somehow managed to understand the gist of their conversation 😉 😛
Some Telugu sentence which I still remember…
Neeku telugu vachchaa/thelusa?
Do you know telugu?
Meeku telugu vachchaa/thelusa?
Do you know telugu? (to elders)
Naaku telugu raadhu/thelidhu.
I don’t know Telugu.
Em chestunnav? (‘Emi chestunaru’ is more formal)
What are you doing?
Nee peru emiti??
What is your name?
Hitech city ki vasthava?? (To ask an autowala)
Will you come to Hitech city?
Inka okka sari cheppu
Tell once more
After Telugu it was time for Kannada…yes though in Bangalore,language is not much of problem,and in my group in Tech Mahindra,most of them being Kannada,they would though not let me feel out-of-place by speaking in Kannada when I am there,but some how I tried listening to their conversation,and gradually learnt quite lot of Kannada…
Some of sentences I learnt in Kannada…
What is your name?…Ninna hesarenu?/ Ninna hesaru yenu?
Did you have your lunch?…Oota madhidheya?/ oota aayitha?
How are you?…Hegiddhiya?/ Neenu heghiddhiya?
I am fine…Nanu chenagiddene.
Why are they late for the meeting?…Avaru meetingige yaake thadavadharu?
How did you come?…Neenu hege bandhe?
And the latest experience of being in Chennai,the need of knowing Tamil is felt when I have to negotiate for an auto,when I have to buy something from a local grocery shop,when I have to order for my evening snacks in office,when I have to ask for some help in finding an address,when I have to instruct my maid for something,when I have to….Yes!it is a never-ending list…Though I do not have much of Tamil speaking company here,I started learning Tamil;just for your information my room mates are Mallus and I am sure by the time I leave this place,I would have learnt Malyalam too 🙂 😛
Coming to my a b c d of Tamil…It starts daily in morning with me trying to get an auto…I use names of places without using any other word in English or Hindi or Tamil,Thank God! names of places are the same in all languages…Then I say “evaalavu”,which means “how much”;then if the auto fellow gives some numbers…Thank God!till date all of them used English number system or sign language,and then if I feel it is more,I say “Anna!  jyasti”…means “Brother! it’s more”…then I say,”Anna fifty sollunga!” which means “Brother! say fifty”….Phew!this is how I get an auto and then “Néraa ponga! Idathu/Valathu thirumpunga”,which means “Go straight! then turn left/ right!”…I hope none of auto walas read this ;)…but I feel they are smart enough to make out I am not Tamilian…
Few more sentences I learnt in Tamil…
Good/ Bad/ So-So…Nallathu / Mosam / Appadithaan.
Big/ Small…Periya / Chinna
Today/ Now…Indru / Ippothu
Tomorrow/ Yesterday…Naalai / Nétru
Yes/ No…Amaam / illai
Here you go! (when giving something)…Indhaa.
Do you like it?…unakku idhu pidikkuthaa?
I really like it!…Enakku idhu romba pidikkuthu.
I’m hungry/ thirsty…Enakku pasi / thagam irukku.
In The Morning/ Evening/ At Night…Kalaiyil / Maalaiyil / Rathri (or) iravil
This/ That. Here/There…Idhu / Adhu. Ingu / Angu
So here I am ‘Jack of many…read 5… languages…master of none!’
And friends,as if this was not enough,I still want to learn few foreign languages!
Lets see when I will be able to do it…. 🙂

#4:Got a smile :)

I know,I keep bringing instances of my workplace 😛 ,however what happened today was just 5 minutes after I left my workplace today late in evening.A sudden thrust of humid air when I come out of office is usual in Chennai, however lift not working was something that happened for the first time.Big deal! I told myself and started walking down the stairs.When I was on the second floor stairs,as I was walking down with a speed,I crossed someone moving very slow,without caring who was there.But then,the moment I was already at first floor,I realized I overlooked something which I should have not.Yes that someone moving slow was a lame lady with polio calipers.And I realized there was nobody with her.I immediately turned back and reached where she was and asked if she needs any help,she looked at me and smiled…said she was waiting for her friend and that she will manage.As I was about to insist again,her friend came,and I smiled back at them and moved on.

And it was not my smile I am talking about,I am herein referring to smile from that lady.Yes it was a smile from a person in return of help someone stranger to her,offered.Though I could not really give her any assistance in walking down the stairs,she genuinely gave me a genuine smile,worth never forgetting and yes with no doubt made itself the “Best of Today!” for me… 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Well well,I know this is unusual to be heard from me however,I would say something good happened today at office which was “Best of Today”.I had plans to reach office in second half,but then when I got a call from my reporting manager at on site office;I had to reach office asap.

When I reached,I was expecting some annoyed faces from the software user group,but I saw smiling faces who were somehow assured that issues will be taken care of.

The story behind this sudden change in the behavior of them, is big one;will tell you in detail later…

Issues were handled in no time and more smiles followed… 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Snooze Champ

Oh yeah…like everybody even I love a good snooze and I feel all these years of experience of setting up an alarm and then keep it on snooze,is in process of making me a ‘snooze champ’ LOL 😉

I have this god gifted or I have developed this skill in me????Whatever it be,but yes if there was any competition of  finding the “Snooze Champion”,I can very confidently nominate myself and I am sure I can at least reach the finals… 😀

While I draft this post here,I though why not have a poll on a very important aspect of being a ‘snooze champ’…that is how many times has one put one’s alarm on ‘snooze’,what say???? 😉 🙂 😀

Lunch with Nishant

“Meeting old friends after a long time, we see with surprise how they have changed, and must imagine, despite the mirror’s lies, that change is upon us, too.”
“The Faces of Children” by Elizabeth Spires

Yes it was almost after 3 years I was meeting Nishant aka Nishu…The meeting was planned a day in advance with his demand of having lunch at my place and not in restaurant. And on top of it,the menu of the lunch should be chicken curry :P,huh!As I am vegetarian from quite some time,I was reluctant in cooking non vegetarian food ,so somehow I convinced him for a lavish vegetarian lunch.
It was a Saturday and Nishant was reminded about the lunch when I got up. I asked him to reach latest by 2 in afternoon. I started cooking and my almost 2 hours of non stop effort in kitchen I was ready with a spread of dishes which included chana masala,paneer pasanda,paratha,boondi raita,rice and salad.
I was ready on time and called Nishant to find out where he was;and as expected Mr.Nishant was late and he sent a sms that he is on his way and will be there in my place in some time. His ‘some’ time became so much time that he who was expected to reach at 2 reached my place 3:30…Old habits die hard 😛
We were meeting after almost 3 years yesterday however the gap was in no way a reason for any sort of formalities between friends. Soon after relaxing with a lemonade we had lunch as both of us were really hungry. Lunch was accompanied with comments,appreciations,memoirs of college days.
Lunch followed with chit chat on so many things,catching up with each other’s lives and how all of us have changed in looks and behavior.
It was just wonderful and we did not realize when it was evening and Nishant had to leave then. It was good meeting up with Nishant again after such a long time!
Speaking about being glad to meet up with old friends, I feel so old now. *sigh* I’m old enough to have ‘old’ friends.

Umm… do not take me wrong…I am not promoting Tata Sky here. I just wanted to let you know that how life went “Jhinga Lala” really, when “Tata Sky Lagaya” 😛
The story begins with me cribbing about my inability to follow some of my TV programs in my new apartment because of normal cable connection not having those channels by default here in Chennai. My dearest “Leonardo Da Vincy” came up with his innovative idea of gifting me a Tata Sky connection on his planned visit on last weekend. He needs no occasion to buy gifts for me; nevertheless it was a day he forgot last here :p, so he had to do something really nice and sweet to really impress me .
However I stay in a shared accommodation, and there’s already a cable connection in place, how do we manage this, was my concern. Trust me I had anticipation of a big mess for installation of my gift and I was very much correct.
It all started with me telling my roommates about the connection as a gift, and a not that warm response from them hearing it. I am used that ‘WOW!’ from my roommates on hearing such news and here it was just so opposite .However I am still not sure if it was normal response or not.
Now, came the issue of permission from my PG uncle who was startled on hearing about this, as conveyed to me. I was not less startled on knowing this. The happiness and excitement of using my gift was being shadowed by not so positive happenings.
Anyway went to speak to uncle after getting tips and counseling session from my only philosopher 😉 and guide.I was carrying my best smile on my face and knocked uncle’s door.
I greeted uncle and we sat in his living room. However I did not start with the installation topic and asked if at all uncle was sleeping. He said, no he was just listening to news about Sashii Tharoor’s involvement in Kochi IPL.Myself at my best of awareness started having chit chat on that and other stuffs and then in between I told him, how I was just not able to see all my favorite television programs and how I was gifted this satellite TV connection and uncle should let me know what concerns he had. Uncle at his best, started advising me how these satellite TV companies are fooling consumer of their money and that it is really not worth. He advised me if I can still return the connection. He also raised a doubt of the uselessness of the box, once I leave Chennai. Now it was my turn, and I told uncle how I cannot return my purchase and first of all I will be staying in his place for sometime now and moreover I will gift this Tata Sky set to him if at all I go; as he had told in his conversation how his son would sometime ask him for it and how he would convince him of it worthlessness. Smile on my face, and the non egoistic “Gandhigiri” approach, somehow gave me the “sign off” for getting the installation done.
Then came the evening, when the technician came to do installation.PG uncle and auntie very much concerned about every corner of their accommodation and in love with its walls, paint on them, the woods had already told me to let them know when the technicians come. The cable connection from the dish antenna had to be brought inside our living room, passing the balcony.
According to technician’s plan, the cable would be neatly fixed on the wall with the help of small nails. When uncle got to know about it, he was raised an objection, as according to him this will damage the wall. The technician tried hard convincing uncle and auntie but in vain. Uncle gave him alternatives of drilling wooden plugs and then nailing a hook and uses it to support and pass cable in balcony. However the technician said, they are only given some standard utilities which is sufficient. In between uncle advised me to raise this concern with Tata Sky consumer grievances, as such constraints are not expected out of Tata’s.Somehow everyone came to a conclusion of the way to bring the cables in and then the technician started doing rest of the activities. The technician, who was by that time really irritated, said something really big, generally not expected out of a person of his level. He told me how he does not like people like my PG owner who are so fussy and who want bricks and woods to last for ever. He said, only good soul and good words last for ever! I was dumbfounded listening this from him. It took another hour to complete the installation activity and I had the “Tata Sky” remote in my hand to surf the channels and take pleasure in my gift, whose realization went through a roller coaster ride.

Chennai’s Auto Rickshaw

All those who have been in Chennai at any point of time might have started imagining their experiences. I have stayed in many Indian cities and understand that traveling in auto in India is an art [wink], however believe me one forgets all the expertise learnt in one’s lifetime when in Chennai.

Like many other Indian cities, here in Chennai too, we have two species of autos, one is called the “shared auto” and the other umm… let’s call it “privileged auto”; these are the autos in which one sits and travels after a set of suggested procedures, which someone known to you would advise. This nomenclature is not only because I had to define it, also because it’s access for the fortunate. You need to have ready cash in bulk all the time to sit and travel in Chennai’s “privileged autos”.

Whilst writing here I just thought why don’t these auto walas install swipe machines in the autos, because the manner they demand and the manner they will never settle for the amount you approved on the first place; the non functional meter could be replaced with a swipe machine, which will accept the Credit cards or Debit cards. The value will never be a trouble since most of the times tariff will be in denominations of 100.

This will also come as a boon in cover up for individuals who have to get their travel bills reimbursed, if we want to travel by “privileged auto”, and aim to get the amount reimbursed from the finance dept in office, it’s sure that we will be laughed at the amount we ask. No one will be in agreement to the amount in the bill we produce and we will not have any way to prove it. With payments by Credit Cards, we will have a bill as an authentication that we were indeed traveling in an Auto and not a BMW.

Although there are officially set rates, auto rickshaw drivers use them more as a guideline. Using their own parameters, the drivers will adjust the price by the location one is going to, whether the auto rickshaw driver believes he can get a ride back, and how much the driver would like to charge you for not being from Chennai!

To the driver, we should always mention the location we want to go, and then ask him how much he will charge! What I am following here “DO NOT GET INTO THE AUTO UNTIL YOU HAVE SETTLED ON A PRICE”. However there have been instances where suddenly our privileged vehicle’s driver will stop and say give me this much money more then only I will go ahead or step out of auto here itself.
After all it’s his Mercedes in which you forcefully barged in and asked him to drive and now he just realized that he is more powerful than you and after all he’s from the land of Rajnikant, whose stunts they are in awe of and can be applied at any time. And yes it’s a crime if you do not know Tamil; you being the culprit, is supposed to bear the grunt, what even if they know the language familiar to both of you; it will be only used while making you sit in the auto, and shall never be used later in any case. Yes this is what I feel in all the uncalled instances I happened to experience in my tryst with Chennai’s auto walas.

Now coming to Chennai’s “shared autos”. The way Auto Drivers drive their Autos here, you wonder if it’s a Ferrari or Lamborghini steering they have their hands on, I anticipate those who have experienced will agree.

The shared auto drivers take the stunts to a different level and can give the folks who showcase their skills at the Republic Day parade a run for their money [wink]. The shared Auto is marginally bigger than your normal auto but the driver seems to think he is driving a bus. The average number of people in a shared auto can be anything from 8-10 with a few adventurous drivers stretching the limits by sacrificing their seating space too.

Every single time I sit in a shared auto here, I have my fingers crossed and I feel like that I am a part of a Grand Apollo Circus or something like being one of passenger in the auto aka airplane.

Last but not the least let me make it clear that I do not intend to criticize Chennai or its people in any means. I am here for some time now and having a good time in the city and I like it in many ways. It was an endeavor to add some wittiness to a factual and unfair state of the Auto Walas in Chennai.

My Roomies :)

As this year is imminent to its closing stages, I sense there are so many things I just could not manage to do in all these days…I wanted to put across my self, but it could not happen for some raison d’être or other…

Year 2009 was a bag of sundry experiences for. I was in high spirits; I was gloomy; I had successes; I had failures; I laughed; I cried; I fought; I had fun; I made foes and yes I made friends…

The place I stayed for all these days was a home away from home in true sense. My flat mates ;with whom my acquaintances was not very old, however the level of intimacy ,empathy, support and love in the midst of all there was not dreamt off when I joined them.

It was fun filled experience all these days there, and now when most of them, including me have moved on to different places for one reason or other, I long to get back to those times.

Herein I just want to write a little about all of them…better to say the first thing about them when I think about them…

Kanu…hmm this cute girl is in true sense big thing in small package!!!!Very down to earth, sensible, caring, intelligent and emotional…I miss those cooking and long chit chat sessions with you on any damn topic. Thanks for all the support I got from you, be the same always.

Rashmi…true to her name…this damsel shines with her fairness. She is very emotional and straightforward girl who values love above anything else. I wish her all the very best in her life.

Roma…our forever “talli” friend: P….jokes apart this lady is a true support system to rely upon in adverse situations and I say that with personal experience. She has unimaginable energy and determination. Hats off to you dear. And I pray God that you get everything you wish for you in your life.

Veenu…my Rani Mukherji and “jab we met’s” Kareena Kapoor…I have to just tell her this to make her happy…A happy go lucky person who is expert in anything she does, be it cooking,makeup,coding,dancing….A great future is stored in you and you have already started getting them. Keep smiling always.

Ruchika… aka Chuggu, BAIL…ha ha…She’s my favorite teasing target. I just love doing it. I know you hate this, but baby I love it and I am sure you must be missing me for that. You are very sweet and you look like a bachcha…however your long list of…makes me wonder how’s it possible. Do invite me for your marriage, don’t you dare forget it…Love you…

Vinni… the sole proprietor of the word “nalayak”…a bundle of mischief and a very good friend. She’s bindaas and urbane in true sense.

Kimi… she gives real wrong impression of being beauty without brains. However this is not at all the case. She’s as bright in all senses as bright she looks. She is a very sweet girl with so many qualities to learn from her. My best wishes are with you for all you endeavor.

Prerna… one of my earliest friends in Bangalore…though distance apart since quite some time, she manages to keep tab of all with quite an élan. She’s a very nice person to know and soon she’s going to get something she’s been dreaming of all these days. All the best dearie…!!!!

Vidhi and Nidhi… the new kids in our place!!!!Vidhi though younger than most of us is “born grandmother”. All those familiar with her would agree to this. She’s a great cook, great manager, very religious and sweet.

And Nidhi, a child still, with so many questions with her all the time. Grow up girl and believe in yourself.

Both of you have a great future ahead. My wishes are always there for you.

I am going to miss all of you big time. I wish our paths cross some time again in future. Love you all.

Best wishes for the New Year…****Happy 2010****…May this year bring lots of happiness, love, laughter and fun…to all of you!!!!

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