February 12, 2010

Who am I? (Mee Kon?)

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  • I'm not Hindu, Im not Muslim nor do I say that I'm an Indian...

  • I'm a human being first and I empathize with all that you have written. You may be right in asking him all the questions you have asked. But simply understand when someone says love thy neighbors, they don't mean love thy criminals and terrorists in the neighborhood. Yes he or she may have preference to his or her religion, but if they were over the country, then he wouldn't have been part of Movies like Chak De... But that might be just politics of its kind and you may be right or not. But the true question is you are opposing 1 such person, but what are you doing to make a difference honestly to change the situation besides writing provocative articles in your newspaper. What are you really doing without being in power for these many years. Why??? Because the people of your state don't want you to be in power. As Anant Gadgil rightly said, addressing Uddhav and Raj 'Both of the brothers want to marry the same girl, 'Marathi manoos.' but the girl doesn't want to marry them.'

  • But then I'm an Indian and the kind, who feels proud every time he goes to watch a movie at a cinema hall and sees 'Bharatbala's' Siachen Glacier 'National Anthem;' Literally get Goosebumps every time. I'm the same human who doesn't believe in any Labels. I'm the same so called 'South Indian' who has not been born in Mumbai or Bombay as I was attached to it while I was a kid always, but lived here forever.I’m the same kind of human who writes Mumbai for hometown on Orkut, Facebook or Twitter while creating an account, cause home is where the heart is.

  • I’m the same human whos favorite play is P.L Deshpande’s ‘Ti Fulraani.’ It’s another story that it is adapted from a classic English movie. I am the same human who feels there are bigger issues of the state that he lives in that could be addressed like the farmers of Vidarbha, and their plight. I’m the same human who enjoyed dal bhati and waangyachi bhaaji in a small village of Pimpri gavli and thought of the hard labour the farmers go to get you this kind of food.

  • I'm not a Marathi even though my last name sounds like one 'Kulkarni.' I'm the same human who when meets a cop in Mumbai, at first instinct speaks in Marathi because I can 'fluently.' And probably to avoid any trouble. Only because of what 'lables' everyone has set. I’m the same human who used to struggle in his childhood to learn Marathi or write Marathi for that matter, but worked hard to write brilliant nibandhs and score a decent 65 in S.S.C at Marathi.  I’m the same human who did not know the kanaas and the matraas of Marathi but learnt it from my mom, who again was born in Aamchi Mumbai.  But some people still had problems with the likes of her and they still do. Simply because her parents were from another state and had come down from another state to simply earn a living. Im the same Human who saw Muslims cheering after India won a cricket match in the same place, and hated some of them who cheered for Pakistan in the same place. I’m the same human who has loved someone from another religion and understood and learnt their religion, while understood many things about my own religion. I’m the same human who sees these people hate everyone but themselves…

  • I’m the same human who ate with these ‘Indian’ might I stress, Muslims and lived with 4 of them in a small room. I’m still the same human who enjoys watching Zee Marathi and not Udaya TV, (Can’t relate to it) which by the way shows programmes belonging to my ‘state’ or the so called state that my parents were born in.  I still enjoy Marathi naataks and take my mom so that she enjoys her heritage.

  • And I am the same human who hates every single terrorist from the land of our neighbours for spreading the terror inside our country. I’m the same human who hates terrorist within our ‘state’ who don’t hate Muslims or Christians, but someone who isn’t like them. I’m the same human who believes that this world is and will be a beautiful place, yet, doesn’t know when it will come to an end because of hatred like this. No the country doesn’t deserve to be loved for they have terrorism within their country and hate amongst themselves and bomb blasts within their sects. No the country probably doesn’t need to be loved because of all the hate, terror, violence, bloodshed they have caused. But what about ‘humans’ who are not part of this state by birth.

  • If somebody accuses SRK of putting his religion ahead of his country on what basis do w e do that?. So my real question is to those who call Maharashtra, Maaza Rashtra. My question as a human being is… Who stops them or for that matter who will stop them when one day they decide to ‘BAN’ me from living here because I am a ‘human’ being but my roots don’t belong here.

  • What about these ‘self proclaimed Tigers’ and protesters belong to the same community who would put their ‘State,’  ‘language’ before their country? Kasli dadagiri ho tumchi?

  • I only have one question. Maybe not as important as the questions Mr. Bandopadhyay has asked  SRK nor as relevant to the comments he has made, but for the people who are protesting against #MNIK  one question..

  • Who am I? or Whom do I need to be, to live in a place where I was not born, but love it the same way than anyone else would. Who am I ‘Mumbaikar, Indian, Human or just a creature of this universe created by GOD, Bhagwaan, Allah, Dev or an omnipresent force that no one knows of yet.

  • I’m not a Hindu.. I’m not a Muslim… I’m a Human and I am an Indian and of course a Mumbaikar… Yet I  am confused…

  • Kharach, Mee kon? (Who Am I?) Ha ek chotaa sa prashna aahe? Always is…

  • © Copyright 2010 Srini. All rights reserved


February 07, 2010

#1411 Tigers Left in India


  • She stood on the edge

  • overlooking the valley.

  • Her elegant frame silhouetted

  • in the moonlit night.

  • Her intense eyes,

  • Pregnant with grief and pain.

  • Her gaze,

  • Penetrating into the quite lugubrious abyss.

  • The maelstrom inside her,

  • resounding in the stillness of the night.

  • Nothing is moving, not even the dewdrops

  • hanging precariously from the leaves.

  • A small cub rests in peace

  • cuddled between her paws.

  • It’s body cold as ice.

  • They had been there together

  • just one night

  • both mother and child.

  • Slowly she slumps beside the lifeless child

  • and licks the furry body.

  • Tucking it closer with her paws

  • she embraces it for One last time.

  • The forest watches quiescent.

A poem by Tikuli.

  • She is the ‘Royal Bengal Tiger’ #1411Tigers left in India… What are we doing about it? I kept reading these tweets off late. I thought to myself. What can we do about it? Just keep spreading the message to all tweeples and others through social networking sites.  Okay I do that… what next? What is going to happen? I mean come on. So you ask me to spread the message about saving tigers. But what is the situation? Does anybody bother to find out.. Did you? I mean do we really understand what the gravity of the situation is. So I tried to do a little research and find out how I could contribute in this cause and what is really happening. You can do too. Read about it. Publish it in your blog. Have visitors visit and spread the awareness. TV and other media is in for the cause. Your choice whether you want to join or not! Or you can stand in the middle of the road and say ‘STOP POACHING.’ But would it really matter to the people who are? I don’t know. But it’s worth a try.

  • When I was 10 years old my dad bought me a collection of books from ‘Childcraft’ They had a book in it Book no 5 if I remember correctly. It was called ‘The Animal Kingdom’ I guess. Internet back then was only used by U.S Army if I know or not invented either. My source of wisdom and knowledge were books like these or ‘The encyclopedia’ which he had brought along with this set. Anyways, in the book there were pie charts like these below. Red stood for extinct and blue for remaining.

  • Soon the state for Our Bengal Tiger would be like the last pie chart. No one has realized that ‘ The Bengal Tiger’ will merely be a photograph in a Children’s educational book or listed as extinct animal on Wikipedia and Google. So to know what the Tiger is all about and spread the message across, here are some key facts that I think we should know about:

  • The Bengal tiger, or Royal Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris[1], previously Panthera tigris bengalensis), is a subspecies of tiger, found in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Burma, and southern Tibet.

  • According toWWF there are about 2,100 Royal Bengal tigers in the wild today, including 1,411 in India, 450 in Bangladesh, 150 in Nepal, 100 in Bhutan, as well as a number in Burma and China.

  • The Bengal tiger has been a national symbol of India since about the 25th century BCE when it was displayed on the Pashupati seal of the Indus Valley Civilisation. On the seal, the tiger, being the largest, represents the Yogi Shiva's people.

  • It  is true and will remain true is that it hasn’t stopped completely.  In 2006, India's Sariska Tiger Reserve lost all of its 26 tigers, mostly to poaching.

  • In 2009, the Panna Tiger Reserve also reported that there weren't any tigers left within the sanctuary due to excessive poaching. Which is why we are speaking up for this campaign! That’s where we come into the picture!

  • The Indian Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 enables government agencies to take strict measures so as to ensure the conservation of the Bengal tigers.

  • Tiger scientists in India, such as Raghu Chundawat and Ullas Karanth, have faced a lot of criticism from the forest department. Both these scientists have been for years calling for use of technology in the conservation efforts. Chundawat, in the past, had been involved with radio telemetry (collaring the tigers).

  • "India has to decide whether it wants to keep the tiger or not. It has to decide if it is worthwhile to keep its National Symbol, its icon, representing wildlife or not!

  • Also check out the statistics below to find out what was the plight of the tigers in 1994 and how it has reduced. All thanks to the awareness generated by people like us. But has not STOPPED.

  • In January 2008, the Government of India launched a dedicated anti-poaching force comprising of experts from Indian police, forest officials and various other environmental agencies.

Year - Tigers Killed
1994 - 95
1995- 121
1996- 52
1997- 88
1998 - 44
1999- 81
2000- 53
2001- 72
2002- 43
2003- 35
2004- 34
2005- 43
2006- 37
2007- 27

  • But the true question is What can ‘you’ and ‘me’ ‘the common man’ really do to save #1411 Tigers remaining. Here’s what.

  • Join all communities and forums on networking related to Save Our Tigers , Save Tigers

  • Reach out to your friends who in turn will reach out to their friends who will educate people who aren’t aware of  ‘Poaching’ We have to shout out.

  • Write about it.. Text your friends.

  • Reach out. Let the poachers be afraid of the revolution against them.

  • Check out these links to help. I did.

  • “Save Her for She needs your protection.” Let her be the National Emblem and not just a symbol on some flag. What do you think? What else can we do? Let us all know and be proud of the fact that we are making an effort... Leave your comments! :-)

  • © Copyright 2010 Srini. All rights reserved


February 06, 2010

Why do i write?

  • I wonder sometimes sitting in my apartment and looking out of the window or sometimes walking across the yard and try to answer this question that keeps me pondering and I sometimes even ask myself if I’m the one who actually writes what I write? When I read something I had written about six months ago I am astonished and amazed at the beautiful words that have been written by me. Sometimes I just can’t believe if I have actually written all the things that I have written. Then I think of myself as the writer I’ve become and come back to realization and this question replaces the other one.
  • Why do I write? I write because I have to. I write because I was born to.
  • I write because I dream, I feel and I realize that this is one thing I’ll have forever along with my solitude. I write because I can express myself best this way. I write to feel the pain that I have held inside me for eternity up until now. I write because I know of nothing else in this wild world that gives me more pleasure than reading a beautiful story I’ve written. I write because it makes me feel proud of the gift that I’m born with. I write to relive my memories. I write because I live in the past that I never want to forget. I write for faith, I write for love and I write to give pleasure to others. I write because I feel the love within myself. I write to awaken myself of nightmares and I write to feed my imagination. I write because I don’t have anyone else to talk to. I write because I have always loved my company more than any one else’s. I write to restore light to the darkness inside our compelled brains. I write to unleash the force that keeps us holding back. I write because I want to jump out of the window sometimes and fall of f the ladder, yet I have no one to listen to me. I write because I hope for a better tomorrow but I know that tomorrow will be what today is. I write to feel the pain of my loved ones and I write to describe their joy and their feelings. I write because I want the world to write with me. I write to make all my dreams become reality. I write to rewrite my past and make it look different. I write to win what I have lost in my life and I write to become a hero, in my real life that I can’t.
  • I write because I feel the music in my writing. I write because I feel this is one thing that can bring me closer to my soul and this is the only thing that I have to fulfill my unimaginable wishes. I write sometimes to think of what I was and what I have become. Then again I write sometimes knowing what I am and where I wanted to go. I write because I know somewhere out there, exists someone who would be a reader of sorts who would in all probability ventures out his wilderness to read what I have written. I write because I’m sacred, haunted by my past that will come to get me in the future. I write sometimes to shock myself. I write in despair I write in hope and I write sometimes to feel what it feels of a life that is endless. I write to imagine what it feels to live without writing. I write to succumb to a painful amount of love that I knew I couldn’t take. I write to come to terms with my belief that has never left me. I write to cherish a treasure of different sorts. I write to find my way back into this world, this world of my own. I write to realize what I have lost. I write to know what I have gained and I write to make sure that I don’t lose anymore. I write because I feel like crying and pouring out all on this piece of paper. I write because I know I can’t do this anymore and sometimes I still wonder why I write. I write because I have no reason to, yet I write.
    I write because I have to. I write because I was born to.


  • It had been six months since Somesh was unemployed. He tried hard to get a new job, but was unsuccessful. Somesh had worked as a hotel manager for more than eight years of his life. Tall with broad shoulders and muscular built; he had a strong jaw line. His short hairstyle with fine shades of grey and a trimmed moustache made him look all the more charming and anyone who heard him speak would certainly be impressed by his style and pleasing personality. Usually dressed in a slick black suit that bore a logo of his hotel, a red tie, he looked dashing as ever. His rimless glasses gave him a more sophisticated look and his smile would make you feel at ease. Most clients who talked to him felt comfortable and mostly dealt with him with their requests.

  • He had been doing well, but they fired him because he could not please a female client of his, who was staying at the finest five star properties in town. Something he wouldn’t do for any amount of money that was paid to him, for he was faithful to his wife Saritaa, whom he loved a lot. The client accused Somesh of theft and got him fired. That was the beginning of his struggle. His struggle that brought a lot of disrepute in the hotel industry for him, which is very closely-knit in a city like Mumbai and your reference checks could do as much harm as the people knowing each other in this line of business. Somesh had a four-year-old daughter and a sixty five year old mother to look after. His wife had stopped working after she had given birth to Ritu, and had been a stay at home mom since then. He was not comfortable to ask her to start working again and he was bothered, as he was unable to secure a job in the market even a couple of levels down. He had tried many places but his bad luck and even worse reference check always made him lose face. These six months that he had been looking for a job had drained him off his self-belief if not anything else.

  • Today lady luck shone upon Somesh, he was selected for the final round of interviews at one of the decent hotels in Mumbai. ‘The Intercontinental Grand’ around the corner, a few blocks away from ‘Not Jazz by the Bay,’ overlooking the sea face of Marine Drive. The place was located strategically, had many elite customers, and offered a real retreat for them. Although he was being interviewed for a different post, one that probably paid him lesser than what he was earning before, he was more than happy to take up this job. He set out in search of a new ray of hope; one that he felt would end up on a positive note. Early that morning he had an egg white sandwich and orange juice. He wore a light blue shirt and his lucky tie; he set out for the interview. His looked oozed an amount of confidence that would probably change the face of his struggling life and give him a new beginning. One that he desperately wanted, much similar to that night four years ago, a night he would remember throughout his life.

  • ***

  • “Saritaa, I’m here sonu’ He said as she was being taken into the maternity ward.

  • They had waited for nine long months and the doctor had warned them earlier that there might be complications as Saritaa was very thin and had struggled a lot throughout these nine months. She was slender and even though almost as tall as Somesh she drooped a little bit. Over the nine months, she had taken good care of herself and somehow managed to gain some weight, yet she struggled to a certain extent. She had long hair before marriage but she trimmed it post her three months into pregnancy. Having had to deal with hair loss as well. There were many such frustrations that she dealt with each passing moment in those months. Every day seemed like a huge struggle for Saritaa with several tests being conducted, Somesh tried his best to ensure that utmost care was given to his lovely wife who looked even more beautiful while she was pregnant. That entire wait had ended after these nine months. Saritaa was screaming loudly inside the maternity ward, right from the time her contractions started. This was one pain and suffering she had anticipated and was trying hard to hang in there. All the suffering, she knew would ultimately bring her joy that has no definition.

  • He took the ten o clock train fairly packed with regular office goers. He had to travel from Borivili all the way to Churchgate, from where he would walk by to ‘The Intercontinental.’ He caught the train as it came into the platform. It was a starting train; he hopped in real quick and found himself a seat next to the window where he could relish the breeze. It was humid that day as it was the onset of monsoon and just last night there was rainfall that made the weather more humid. Even though he could smell the whiff of fresh earth after an odd shower or two, he could also feel the heat and humidity intensified especially after the rain had come and gone. Now the sun was shining bright in the sky and he hoped his fortune would too, as this day ended. He was thinking a lot and trying to figure out how he would get this job and how he hoped that there was no reference check, at least for the job that he had applied for. He decided not to give the reference of his last job and show gap in his resume, anyways there was a gap of six months. So he decided to take a risk hoping it would pay off. The train started its journey and he was all set to go wage his battle and come out victorious. He thought a lot about all the pain that he had gone through, all the uneasy moments that he had had. In the past, he had suffered a lot because he had been extremely honest. A little tact this time, he hoped would probably get him what he needed. It was not as though he was robbing a bank or slitting someone’s throat. He wondered how these six months of staying at home had made him a different person altogether. A person that he had become especially with his principles and limits that he had followed all his life. This was something he had to do and this was the time for him to make it or break it. Maybe this tweaking would benefit him and not really do any harm to anyone else. Anyone else he knew at least.

  • “No harm done,” he said as he started to read the newspaper to ward off his fretful moments.

  • ***

  • “Ahhhh, Somu.” She yelled as the pain was getting excruciating…

  • She was struggling, exulting in the labour room besides Somesh. She was in so much pain that she bit Somesh several times on his arm. She just could not take the suffering, something she had prepared herself for. While she was in pain, Somesh was getting even more concerned. Desperate to know what the result would be! He really was hoping that his wife gets relieved of the pain soon.

  • “Sonu, I’m here. It’s going to be okay,” he kept telling here, as he stroked her back and caressed her hair while the doctor and the nurse was busy delivering the baby.

  • Somesh had reached Churchgate and he woke up from his slumber. He had gone to sleep while reading the newspaper. He realized he had reached his destination the minute he was awakened by the buzzing commuters trying to jump into the running train to get their share of window seats. He got down, went to the public toilet to freshen up. He washed his face, tucked in his shirt, readjusted his tie and combed his hair neatly. Finally wore his specs that he had carefully removed and kept aside.

  • “All set, you can do it Somesh. You are the man.” He thought, pepping himself up.

  • He went to the hotel and waited in the lobby for more than half an hour, then, he was called to fill a form and other interview formalities that needed to be done. By the time all was done, it was about lunch. So he had to wait for an hour or so before they interviewed him. He called his wife from the lobby and told her that he would not come home before 4:00 PM. As he sat there, his nervousness growing, he was waiting, patiently looking at a small wall clock in the lobby that had an antique yet a classic touch. It was the wall clock with a pendulum, ticking away to glory and he was watching the pendulum go back and forth. It gave a strange feeling of time that was so precious. Every time the pendulum swung, he tried to count how many times it swung a minute, is when he would realize, how much every second is worth. The lobby had a nice pair of chandeliers, which matched the ambience of the soft sandalwood paint. One would generally get the feeling of being in a place that had the tranquility, which could last for eternity. But in Somesh’s case, it was otherwise. Every little second that passed by and every time the pendulum swung, it killed him, for his anxiety grew. He was hoping this day would bring him immense joy and open a window of opportunity to fulfill all the dreams he had set for his sweet little ‘Ritu.’ The Directors who were going to interview Somesh were busy in the boardroom let alone taking an interview, they had not had their lunch up until 4:30. Somesh thought of giving another call to his wife and letting her know that he would not come home until 6:30. But a sweet voice interrupted his thoughts.

  • “Are you ready for your interview Somesh?” Priya from HR asked Somesh and he nodded in affirmative. He looked up signaling to God and hoping that this day turns out to be a day that he would never forget. He prayed anxiously and hoped that this eleventh day of the month would end his suffering finally.

  • “Eleven was a good number,” He thought to himself, being a firm believer of Lord Ganesha.

  • Eleven is the number that suited him and something that gave him respite amidst all the fretfulness. Soon the interview started and his anxiety converted itself to a little bit of pressure but later on eased itself out. They were interviewing him for an hour at least. He had to also give them some practical demonstration of certain fine skills that needed to be possessed by a line manager which by the way was something Somesh had mastered over the time but since he’d not stepped into those shoes for a long time, he felt a little rusty.

  • Meanwhile the anxiety had transferred on to Saritaa, who was at home and it was way past evening. Her husband had not yet come home nor had he called. She was wondering what had went wrong and why Somesh did not call her up as she was getting really worried about him. She had finished all her chores, washed the clothes put Ritu off to sleep and cooked dinner as well. Usually she went to the park with Ritu and Somesh’s mother, but today his mother had gone to stay with one of her cousins so she was all alone and feeling all the more apprehensive. She was trying to ward off her angst by watching television. Usually packed with the same old boringsoaps full of twists and turns which you would get used to by now especially after watching so many of them. She was surfing the channels when she happened to tune into a news channel.

  • “Seven bomb blasts in a span of eleven minutes! Terror strikes Mumbai again…”

  • ***

  • “Doctor, when will this pain be over?” she asked as she struggled to deliver the baby.

  • The doctor told her in front of Somesh that there were some complications, the baby had changed its position and it was an awkward situation for them to get this through.

  • “We may have to do a cesarean.” She said to Somesh.

  • There was utter silence in the room. Even as the news continued to play on the television, Saritaa could hear nothing. She was deafened with a silence that took her out of the frame. She was petrified. For minutes she couldn’t move, she just lay there sitting on the couch with a chain of thoughts surging her brain and flooding her with all the nightmares that she had ever dreamt of. All of those dreadful images just struck her and paralyzed her in the mind and in body.

  • She slowly regained composure and tried a little bit to think. What should she do? The first thing that she thought of was to call him up on his cell phone and soon she realized that he had forgotten it at home.

  • “What to do? What do we do doctor?” Somesh asked the doctor as Saritaa overheard. The doctor asked Somesh to calm down. She said everything is under control.

  • “I know there are complications, but don’t worry she’ll make it through and so will the baby.”The doctor went out to get some more medicines and surgical tools while she asked the nurse to take care of Saritaa.

  • Saritaa didn’t know what to do. She thought of calling Somesh’s mother and try to find out if he had called her at her cousin’s house. But she stopped herself; she did not want to take that risk, as her mother in law was a heart patient.

  • The fact that she has not called up yet, means she may not be aware of the blasts that have occurred. She thought of trying to get a resolution herself before taking any drastic steps. She just could not imagine it had to be this day that Somesh had to go for the interview, cursing herself for not reminding him to take the mobile. By the time the interview might have been over, he would be coming back in one of these trains. Though Somesh didn’t travel first class, her heart was still thumping not knowing where her husband, her life her soul mate was. Most of the bombs were placed in First class compartments that is what she heard on the news. She began to think of many other things. Things that she did not want to think of. She tried calling Somesh’s friends and asked if he had called him. Most of them said they have not heard from him for a long time. They offered help and said will call her if he called them. She just did not know what to do. She could not even remember the name of the hotel that Somesh had been to for the interview. She was trying hard to remember but she felt numb.

  • ***

  • “These painkillers should help you reduce the pain. But you will also feel a little anesthetized” The doctor told her.

  • So desperate she was that she did not know what to do. She was scared. Scared stiff! Worried, if her husband had been one of those caught in the blast? She started crying, for that was the only emotion that whizzed out of her, being overwhelmed by the amount of thoughts that hovered around her mind. With the tears, rolling out of her eyes and the loud crying even Ritu woke up and she sensed the pain that her mother was going through and she started weeping as well. After a while of shedding her emotions out, Saritaa wiped the tears off her face and became grittier. She regained her composure and thought with a calm mind. What is the most logical thing that she could do at this moment? What was it that could either make her find the name of the hotel that Somesh had been to or get the contact number for that place.

  • She began going through Somesh’s files. She razed through the closet as she began looking for interview letters, brochures or anything that could help her recollect the name of the hotel. But to her disdain, she found nothing. Her determination became stronger with this failure and she tried to think of more means and ways of trying to get to her husband. That is when it struck her; Somesh had called her in the afternoon on her cell phone. Maybe that could give away his location. It seemed like a landline and could be a nearby location. She had her fingers crossed, dialed the number and waited with desperation. Desperation, that either meant a world full of emptiness or an utmost delight never imagined ever in her life. Maybe experienced it once before.

  • “Good Evening, Intercontinental Grand. How may I help you?” a sweet voice of a young receptionist buzzed Saritaa’s ears as soon as the call was connected.

  • She was relieved to a certain extent for the voice reduced her stress a little bit. She got through the hotel and yes, now she remembered the name as well. How could she forget this place? ‘The Intercontinental’ around the corner, a few blocks away from ‘Not Jazz by the Bay’ overlooking the sea face of Marine Drive. A place, that Somesh and Saritaa frequently visited during their early years of courtship. The romantic sunset and how they held hands while they saw the Sun go down and the time stood still while they enjoyed each other’s company.

  • “I’m calling for Mr. Somesh Ahuja; he had been there today for an interview. I was wondering if you could tell me if he’s still there or if he’s left” She stuttered as she spoke to the receptionist, eager to know about her husband.

  • “Let me check the register and I’ll tell you.” She flapped through the pages of the register where everyone had to sign in and out every day as they came for interviews. Saritaa kept tapping her fingers on the dining table as the receptionist was looking for Somesh’s name in the register.

  • “Oh there it is, hmmm, well mam, strange… It’s 7:30; usually interviews don’t go this long.” She replied. She said she‘d check with the interview co-coordinator as HR would have left by now and then she’d call her back. Saritaa said she will call back in ten minutes and hung up the phone. Those ten minutes again took her back to the miserable moments and thoughts that surrounded her mind and that is when she went inside the kitchen. A place, which also had a small temple of their own with Lord Ganesha’s idol kept besides other deities. She began to pray hard and as she did, her faith in Him began to rise. She began to feel a great bit of comfort and her confidence rose. She recited her prayers for ten minutes and was about to call up the hotel again, when her cell rang.

  • ***

  • “Wow… my baby girl.” Somesh said as he looked at his beautiful baby while Saritaa could feel it.

  • She could feel the baby coming out and the pain easing out slowly. Minutes later Ritu was born, she slowly contracted and eased her grip on Somesh’s hand. She was exhausted, tired out of the three and a half hours of labour that she had gone through. Every sweat on her body and every blood that she shed made her feel that it was all worth it. Even before she could see her daughter, the nurse took her away to follow the regular practices. Saritaa was so exhausted that she went in deep slumber the minute the laborious process was done with. Later that morning the doctor introduced Saritaa to a sweet little part of her own. Her wailing sound was the sweet sound of music to her ears and meant the world to her. She was so happy that she did not know how to rejoice this moment of happiness. That is when her tears rolled out to fall on Ritu’s nose while she was still sleeping in the warmth of her mother’s arms.

  • “Saritaa, I’m so sorry… I couldn’t call” a voice that eased her so much that she couldn’t control her emotions that she just screamed with happiness followed by tears of joy. It was Somesh on the phone. He had taken a long while because there were many other candidates as well and they did not allow anyone to step out, due to restrictions best known to the management. He was unaware of the happenings outside and couldn’t even imagine what his wife must have gone through all this while. Finally, both of them were relieved and the relief that they shared was something both of them did four years ago. A moment that gave her the feeling that motherhood was something she wanted and something she will treasure for life. A day both of them will not forget ever. The eleventh day of July, a day that would end his suffering finally. He got the job and he stuck to it for several years. No harm done indeed. Yes it was the tweaking that had helped him get through this job, but at the end of the day, no harm was done as he was the best candidate for this job and he deserved it more than anyone else in that room on that day.

  • A day where he jumped into a window of opportunity to fulfill all the dreams he had set for his sweet little ‘Ritu.’

  • Copyright 2009 Srini. All rights reserved


A dream come true

  • How can I say this? for I don’t know the reason,
  • Things happened to me and everything changed
  • Don’t know if it is winter, spring or autumn
  • Just know that love is all around, this season.
  • Truly, I saw my dream come true,
  • My prayers were heard, Lord o Mighty,
  • You’re the best, for the love you gave,
  • Heard me in despair and I made it through.
  • A strong feeling that I had in my mind,
  • A truth I probably knew all this while,
  • In my heart I see you every moment
  • In your heart, a true love I can find.
  • There’s a strange way that we connect,
  • Of course, it’s destiny, we both know,
  • All the incidents with us, that happened,
  • The love you gave to me, I’ll never forget.
  • I know there’s a lot of madness inside me,
  • In every breath, I feel your presence,
  • When I sleep at night I dream of you,
  • In every mirror, your beautiful face I see.
  • Imagine a life without you, oh no I cannot,
  • What will happen to my soul? I don’t know,
  • You’ve touched my heart, deep within,
  • This I say with conviction, I love you a lot.
© Copyright 2008 Srini. All rights reserved Share

Always in my heart

  • I’ve been through this feeling before,

  • Why do I think it’s not difficult anymore?

  • I know what you’ve given me so far,

  • Is something special yet bizarre.

  • I know you think I’m crazy,

  • Crazy for you my baby.

  • Never thought I’d be like this one day,

  • In your heart I’m here to stay.

  • Deep in my heart I thought of this,

  • When you touch me I feel the bliss.

  • Now I know that the world is mine,

  • With you on my side & I’m on cloud number nine.

  • Once I’m with you I lose all my fear,

  • When I see you smile, you make me cheer.

  • I feel so good in your company,

  • You make my day bright and sunny.

  • The more I think, the more I feel you,

  • Together I know, we’ll make it through.

  • This has been quite a start I know,

  • You’ll be in my heart wherever I go.

  • You, the best babe, I adore you!

© Copyright 2008 Srini. All rights reserved


Thank You

  • I know it’s been long overdue.

  • I just didn’t know how time flew

  • I know now, something that should

  • Make me feel, Oh so good!

  • It’s been a long time since I’ve

  • Thought about this, but I just

  • Couldn’t think of words so few,

  • That would best describe you.

  • Sometimes you were the best,

  • Sometimes you gave us a real test

  • And most of the times I know,

  • You were better than the rest!

  • With great motivation you made

  • Me fight hard for the goals

  • Always knew I couldn’t get

  • With your help I always got

  • What I really wanted.

  • Well, now I know what to say,

  • To lord with my heart, I pray.

  • For loads of success to you,

  • Thanks a ton and May God bless you!

© Copyright 2008 Srini. All rights reserved


I'll Tell you why

In reply to Amberlee Watson's 'Why?''

  • Why is my name always floating in your head?

  • You are in love with me, that's why!

  • Why do you dream about the possibilities of the future ahead?

  • Because it's a dream that will come true, that's why!

  • Why do you wait? Why do you dream?

  • Why do you bother with this sort a thing?

  • Why will you make this possible?

  • Why will you work hard for something that may not be possible?

  • Cause you know it's worth it, that's why!

  • Why is my name always on your lips?

  • Why do I live in your heart and make it beat fast?

  • Cause you know I'm the only one, that's why!

  • Why do you cry within and smile from the outside?

  • Cause when I meet you never will have to cry, that's why?

  • When will God let your happiness being?

  • When will he let us meet?

  • Why does he want us to be apart for so long?

  • When will he grant the opportunity for our longing to be gone?

  • Now that's one thing, I can't tell you WHY?

  • But I know this, Why YOU? Why ME?

  • Cause that's destiny baby, that's why!

© Copyright 2008 Srini. All rights reserved


My true affection

  • All that I think about you is true,

  • All that I feel about you is true,

  • This life, this love & the passion...

  • A whole lot of joy and affection,

  • I feel this emotion in my heart, I know.

  • All that I felt about you is true,

  • All that I dreamt about you is true,

  • This life, this love & the passion...

  • A whole lot of madness and conviction,

  • I know this truth in my heart, I know.

  • All that I heard about you is true,

  • All that I speak about you is true,

  • This life, this love & the passion...

  • A whole lot of flawlessness & perfection,

  • I see this beautiful painting, I know.

  • All that I believe about you is true,

  • All that I imagine about you is true,

  • This life, this love & the passion...

  • A whole lot of beauty & attraction,

  • I’m so glad you are mine & I love you.

© Copyright 2008 Srini. All rights reserved


Eat that frog - Brian Tracy

  • Eat that Frog! Don’t worry it’s got nothing to do with breakfast, lunch or dinner. I had bought this book like a couple of years back. In fact I had got it as a gift for my cousin. She was in HSC then, after I read this book I knew it would definitely help her. Brian Tracy is an excellent author usually writes books on Management and self help. His concepts are usually similar however worth the read in each and every book. Anyways “Eat that Frog” is a book which has techniques to help you avoid the old sin they call ‘Procrastination’
  • It’s written very well with interesting anecdotes that will enchant you at every page of the book. Here’s something like that,
  • “An old saying is that "If the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long!" Your "FROG" is the one you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don't do something about it now! It is also the one task that can have the greatest positive impact on your life and results at the moment.”
  • In addition to anecdotes like these, the book focuses on 21 rules to ‘Eat that Frog’ i.e. avoid procrastination. Rules like:
  • 1) Set the table
  • RULE1: Think on paper!Step 1 - Decide exactly what you wantStep 2 - Write it down!
  • Step 3 - Set a deadline on your goal
  • Step 4 - Make a list of everything that you can think of that you are going to have to do to achieve your goal
  • Step 5 - Organize the list into a plan
  • Step 6 - Take action on your plan immediately!Step 7 - Resolve to do something every single day that moves you toward your major goal.
  • A book, which will be an interesting, read for people who love self-help and motivational books. Here’s another one to your collection. In fact for people who are already into these kind of books must have already read this book I’m sure. For those who haven’t please do and I’m sure you’d find it worthwhile.

Illusion - Adventures of a reluctant messiah - Richard Bach

  • I read this book first when I borrowed it from one of my close friends. I knew right then that this is a book for keeps. So I decided to pick up a copy for myself. It’s a very short book and truly inspiring. After a long time I’m writing a review for such a book. This is a short read and at the same time has a lot of magic. Magic that can make you think about the kind of stuff that most people don’t believe in. The kind of stuff that most people just imagine about.

  • Richard Bach, the barnstorming aviator, meets Don Shimoda, another barnstormer, and they strike up a friendship. Shimoda seems to be able to do things that are impossible and Bach discovers that Shimoda has stopped clinging to the bottom of the river, and Bach wants to join him. He discovers a Messiah Manual which has no page numbers. You simply flop it down and it opens to the right page for you at the moment. As a result Illusions is peppered throughout with quotes from the manual, a fact that makes this novel into a Messiah Manual of its own. Shimoda, if he were writing this, would caution you that the same is true for every book you open or that falls off a shelf in front of you, you are destined to read from that page or that entire book. There are no accidents, only intended events that we don't understand at the time that they occur. Here's an example: I was writing this and suddenly the bottom half of my computer monitor filled with horizontal stripes which extended up to the top, but stayed clear enough in the middle of the screen for me to close up my jobs. I'm back with a new 20" monitor to replace the broken 17" one. Looking at all the new space this bigger screen provides for me to get my work done, I'm beginning to understand why the old one gave up when it did, just at the right time.

  • This is the kind of book that you want to give out to someone especially when there’s an occasion that calls for inspiration. Occasions where one sees a different horizon and a dimension of life. Most admiring fact about this book is that you can relate to the things that he says and they are so simple that even a four year old will understand his philosophy. A philosophy well told in the form of the examples and the story in the book.

  • Here are a few quotes from the book.

  • You teach best what you most need to learn. Thus a Teacher, so also a Learner. I discovered long ago that in any situation the person assigned the role of teacher is learning as much or more than the learners. This is the one that I relate to very well. I learnt this long time but when I read the book I realized how true this was.

  • Here's a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: If you're alive, it isn't. And if you're alive, then every statement you make about what is true for you in your life is a statement of limitation because your mission is not finished. Statements of limitation are simply expressions of the way your life has been, up until now.

  • All in all this book has so many profound thoughts that you will keep them in your closet and use them in life on many a occasions. So a must read especially if you are interested in spiritual as well as motivational book. Happy Reading!


The Time Machine - H.G. Wells

  • Who doesn’t know this book? One of the best fictions written ever. Of course a lot of other works, movies have taken ‘inspiration’ from this concept of the Time Machine. But what H.G Wells had thought of in the 18th century is truly remarkable, other books of which were written a long time ago have actually materialized into scientific realities. So he definetely was a man of vision. He has written papers on Nuclear Energy way before Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we all must have seen Hollow Man; it definitely is a concept he wrote of in the ‘Invisible Man’

  • I thought of going back and reading this book once more. It is definitely gripping even though in today’s world we’ve seen so many sci-fi movies that we may not be captivated by the idea of reading this book and enjoying it’s thrill... But trust me once you get into this sci-fi thriller u’ll really enjoy, it. But yes if you have already watched the movie, then it’s a lot better than the book. But you have to remember that this book was written two centuries ago.

  • It talks about a ‘Time Traveler’ that’s his name in the book. He’s a scientists who actually invents the Time Machine. When he displays a small model to his fellow scientists they think it’s a joke. Well to prove them right, he goes ahead and uses the actual model and goes ahead in the future. The machine The criterion of the prophecy in this case is influenced by the theory of "natural selection." Mr. Wells' vision of the "Sunset of Mankind" was of men so nearly adapted to their environment that the need to struggle, with the corollary of the extermination of the unfit, had practically ceased. Humanity had become differentiated into two races, one the Eloi, race of childlike, simple, delicate creatures living on the surface of a kindly earth; the other, the Morlocks, a more active but debased race, of bestial habits, who lived underground and preyed cannibalistically on the surface-dwellers, who they helped to preserve, as a man may preserve game. The Eloi, according to the hypothesis of the Time Traveller, are the descendents of the leisured classes; the Morlocks of the workers. All this is in the year 802,701 A.D.

  • THE TIME MACHINE, despite certain obvious faults of imagination and style, is a brilliant fantasy: and it affords a valuable picture of the young Wells looking at the world, with his normal eyes, and finding it, more particularly, incomplete. At the age of twenty-seven or so, he has freed himself very completely from the bonds of conventional thought, and is prepared to examine, and to present life from the detached standpoint, views it all from a respectable distance; but who is able, nevertheless -- an essential qualification to enter life with all the passion and generosity of his own humanity. It’s a good read, which has an open ending and I the sequel can only be written by H.G. Wells who knows maybe he’ll ‘TIME TRAVEL’ and do that for us...


Nine on Nine - Nandita Puri

  • Interesting name for starters… I saw this book at Cosswords. What caught my eye was it’s beautiful cover page. None other than, the renowned painter, M.F. Hussain has designed it. A striking picture of a woman blessing you, a beautiful sketch definitely makes you pick up the book. Never judge a book by its cover, did you say? However, market dynamics often put that old saying at a big loss. The fact is - book buyers generally judge a book by its cover. An interesting book works as hard as a 10-second commercial spot for your book. In fact, book market stats reveal that an average person browsing the store will not devote more than 3-5 seconds to your book cover.

  • Nine on Nine is a collection of short stories, most of them inspired from real life written by Nandita C Puri, wife of the famous actor Om Puri. It’s an amazing book with an array of characters that have been portrayed very well throughout each and every story of the book. The underlining factor of this book is ‘Women.’ All these nine stories are of women who inspired the author. It starts off with ‘Arranged Marriage.’ A story about Rekha, who’s married to Shiva, a ‘love marriage.’ It’s about her family and how they have opposed her of her love marriage and supporting her brother who by the way is okay with an arranged marriage and is pampered like a 4 year old. The climax of the story is something that makes it more interesting.

  • I’d definitely agree to ‘Truth is stranger than fiction’ after reading some of the stories in this book. My favorite story in this book is ‘ At Jenny’s.’ A beautiful episode about higher middle class females who are frequent goers at Jenny’s beauty parlor. It’s the ending of this story that makes it really interesting, for all this while you know what the climax is going to be like. However the most interesting part is the subtle way it finishes and surprises you, much against your expectations.

  • All in all I’d say an interesting read, especially for all the women. I know for a fact that you’d relate to the stories in this book. Beautifully written, overall a nice feel to the book and most importantly a lot of stories touch your heart and inspire you. Must say Indian fiction definitely has another talented author to its repertoire. Way to go Nandita!


Veronika Decides To Die - Paulo Coelho

  • Synopsis – Veronika seems to have everything she could wish for. She is young and pretty, has plenty of attractive boyfriends, goes dancing, has a steady job, a loving family. Yet Veronika is not happy; something us lacking in her life. On the morning of November 11th, 1997, she decides to die. She takes an overdose of sleeping pills, only to wake up sometime later in Villette, the local hospital. There she is told that although she is alive now her heart is damaged and she has only a few days to live...

  • This story follows Veronika through these intense days as her experiences lead her to question the whole idea of what madness is before she comes to realize that every second of existence is a choice that we all make between living and dying. This is a moving and uplifting song to life, one that reminds us that every moment in our lives is special and precious.

  • My good friend and my boss Stacey Fernandes recommended this book to me. Having read the ‘Alchemist’ I was all game for this book. Definitely Paulo Coelho is an author who has the inspiring power to change people’s lives. In fact this book is an interesting read and inspiring as well. What’s more the cover is also very insightful. The protagonist Veronika is a very strong character and has been portrayed in different shades. The real story starts off after she attempts to commit suicide and fails. Which is when she is admitted to a mental hospital in Villette. Now besides the fact that she’s in the hospital she also has been told that her heart is damaged and will die in a few days. This is something ironic. It’s a different thing when you want to die on your own and you succeed and it’s another when you fail and you know you are going to die. This way you don’t have control over your death or your life. All you do is wait...

  • Now what is more interesting is that she meets a few people in the Hospital and interacts with them in fact, gets inspired as well by their perspectives and at the same time changes their lives as well. This mutual association comes to a climax at the end of the book which is the most interesting part and that’s why I’d like to recommend this book to everyone. Besides the way the author has portrayed all the different characters and their lives is very interesting and how it relates to their existence in that hospital is worth knowing.

  • All in all a very inspiring book and at the same time catchy. There’s no way you’d be bored at any stage in this book.


Manual of the warrior of light - Paulo Coelho

  • This one’s quite interesting. I’m quite enchanted by his style of writing. Paulo Coelho, a Brazilian writer, the one who gave us ‘The Alchemist.’ This one’s very much similar to ‘The Alchemist’ inspirational and a kind of a book, which you’d never get tired of reading over and over again. What more, it’s actually written as if it were a manual or a handbook. A tool that will help us to sail the ship of your life even in the rough waters.

  • The cover of the book has a comment by none other than our very own President, A.P.J Abdul Kalam. Here’s what it says, “The book that left a good impression on me is Paulo Coelho’s Manual of the Warrior of Light (Harper Collins). I enjoyed reading Paulo’s statement in the book, ‘The warrior smiles because nothing frightens him and nothing holds him. With the confidence of one who knows what he wants, he opens the door.’

  • It is truly inspiring and not at all boring. You can read it anywhere you want as it has quotes like this, which you’d absolutely relate to. Come what may, the Warrior keeps on fighting. The warrior is a metaphor for each and every individual who has a dream and thinks of achieving something in life. It includes proverbs, extracts from theTao Te Ching, the Bible, the book of Chuang Tzu, the Talmudand various other sources, and is written in the form of short philosophical passages. The book's content was first published in various Brazilian newspapers between 1993 and 1996. It was compiled in 1997, given a prologue and epilogue, and then published under its current title.

  • All in all a very good read that will keep us going, when the going gets tough in fact, will bring strength to our lives day in day out.


The Inscrutable Americans - Anurag Mathur

  • A very popular book, in print for ages, probably read by 80% of young Indian readers in India as well as America. Well to tell you the truth, I hadn’t read this book till now. In fact I had started reading it a decade ago. (‘exaggerating’, laughs to himself) but did not finish reading it, was not my copy and then never got my hands on it again. Until I bought this book from the book fair at Assam bhavan. Usually I got time to read this book when I was traveling to and from the office. Well, when I started reading the book, it immediately gripped me with it’s laugh out loud hilarious approach towards the scheme of things. Initially I thought it must be just another book which will probably talk about a simpleton from India who travels to the land of opportunity and gets mocked at. Maybe get’s punched by a few people and at the end of the day, saves a beautiful blonde from hooligans and gets to become the hero. If you are expecting anything like that. I’m sorry to disappoint you. Well, here’s what the book is all about. Gopal, a young and intelligent lad from a small town of Madhya Pradesh called Jajau sets off to America, gets an opportunity to study at the University of Eversville. In the beginning the most amazing part is the way Gopal writes a letter describing his experience of America. Here’s what he writes.

  • Dear Brother,

  • Greetings to respectful parents. I am hoping all is well with health and wealth. I am fine at my end. Hoping your end is fine too. With God's grace and parents' blessings I am arriving safely in America and finding good apartment near University. Kindly assure mother that I am strictly consuming vegetarian food only in restaurants though I am not knowing if cooks are Brahmins. I hope parents' prayers are residing with me. Younger brother, I am having so many things to tell you that I am not knowing where to sart. Most surprising thing about America is it is full of Americans. Everywhere Americans, Americans, big and white, it is little frightening. The flight from New Delhi to New York is arriving safely thanks to God's grace and Parents' prayers and mine too. I am not able to go to bathroom whole time because I am sitting in corner seat as per revered grandmother's wish. Father is rightly scolding that airplane is flying too high to have good view.

  • Still please tell her I have done needful. But, brother, in next two seats are sitting two old gentle ladies and if I am getting up then they are put in lot of botheration so I am not getting up for except when plane is stopping for one hour in London. Many foods are being served in carts but I am only eating cashew nuts and bread because I am not knowing what is food and what is meat. I am having a good time drinking 37 glasses of Coca-Cola. They are rolling down a screen and showing a film but I am not listening because air hostess ladies are selling head phones for 2 dollars which is Rs.60 and in our beloved Jajau townwe can sit in balcony seats in Regal Talkies for only Rs.3. I am asking lady if they are giving student discount but she is too busy. I am also asking her for more Coca-Cola but she is looking like she is weeping and walking away. I think perhaps she is not understanding proper English.

  • Then I am sleeping long time after London and when I am waking it is like we are flying over sea of lights. Everywhere, brother, as far as I am seeing there are lights lights. It is like God has made carpet of lights. Then we are landing in New York and plane is going right upto door so that we are not having to walk in cold. I must say Americans are very advanced. And as I am leaving aeroplane, air hostess is giving me one more can of Coca-Cola. Her two friends are also with her, but why they are laughing so much I do not know. I think these Americans are strange but friendly people in their hearts. I hope she was not laughing for racial. Perhaps she was feeling shy earlier. Then I am going to long bathroom. As I am leaving I am making first friend in America. This is Negro gentleman named Joe who is standing at door and as I am opening it he is holding out hand so I am shaking it and telling him my name and he is tellng me his. I am telling him if he is ever coming to Jajau he can ask for National Hair Oil Factory. If I have not returned from Higher Studies please tell father that if negro gentleman named Joe is visiting Jajau he may kindly do needful. In this way I feel each and every one of us is serving as Ambassador of our beloved Motherland. Joe is doubtful I feel because he says "Far out, man, far out", but I am reassuring him that India is only 16 hours away by plane and that is not very far. I think he is accepting this because he is not saying anything any more. Next I go to place marked " Baggage" as Father has advised and suddenly place I am sitting starts to move throwing me. It is like python we once saw in forest, only rattling and with luggage bouncing on its back and sometimes leaping to attack passengers. I am also throwing myself on bag before it is escaping. I think if I am not wrestling it down it would revert to plane and back home to India. I am only joking of course. Before this I am meeting very friendly gentleman at Immigration desk. I do not know why all relatives had warned against this man, because he is so friendly. He is talking English strangely but is having kind heart because he is asking me about nuts and I am saying that I am liking very much and eating many on plane. "Totally, totally nutss," he is saying, which I feel American expression for someone fond of cashewnuts. Before this he is showing friendliness by asking "How is it going?" I am telling his fully and frankly about all problems and hopes, even though you may feel that as American he may be too selfish to bother about decline in price of hair oil in Jajau town. But, brother, he is listening very quietely with eyes on me for ten minutes and then we are having friendly talk about nuts and he is wanting me to go.

  • At Customs, brother, I am getting big shock. One fat man is grunting at me and looking cleverly from small eyes. "First visit?" he is asking, "Yes," I am agreeing "Move on," he is saying making chalk marks on bags. As I am picking up bags he is looking directly at me and saying "Watch your ass." Now, brother, this is wonderful. How he is knowing we are purchasing donkey? I think they are knowing everything about everybody who is coming to America. They are not allowing anybody without knowing his family and financial status and other things. And we are only buying donkey two days before my departure. I think they are keeping all information in computers. Really these Americans are too advanced. But, brother, now I am worrying. Supposing this is CIA keeping watch or else how they can know about our donkey? Anyway please do not tell Mother and Father or they are worrying, but lock all doors and windows. If CIA wants to recruit me to be spy in Jajau, I will gladly take poison before betraying our Motherland. Then I am going out and cousins are waiting and receiving me warmly. I will write soon after settling down.

  • Your brother,

  • If you thought this letter was funny, read the way Gopal gets his way out in a mall, he goes and bargains in a shopping mall, now that’s the spirit of India. This book has so many other hilarious experiences of Gopal, who tries to understand new things and adapt to the culture of America, how he differentiates between lives of different types of people living in the cosmopolitan America. No it is not a book that makes fun of our countrymen, if people thought that is what it’s about after reading the letter. It talks of the incidents that happen to him that make him realize how cold the culture of this country is and how difficult it is to make a living out there. Realizes the fact that we are better off living in India, with its warm hospitable culture and beautiful countrymen who are always here to help each other whenever required.

  • Gopal, our Indian, has taken a strong liking to Coke, French fries and has won over quite a few people with his innocent and funny behavior. He also meets a good friend, philosopher and guide, Randy, who is eager to introduce Gopal to the joys of an American college education. At the same time Gopal has to "uphold" the Indian culture and also keep his head in the books. What is important at the end of the day in this book is that he realizes that his true place belongs to India. So this one actually has a deep message that talks about issues like “Brain Drain” People going to study to US. Staying there and working for a lot of American companies, and in a way benefiting America instead of India. It is for those people as our Indian hero Gopal, returns back to India once he finishes his education, to help his father in his family business ‘An Oil Factory in Jajau.’ All in all a very good read and funny in it’s own way. Enjoy.


Interpreter of Maladies - Jhumpa Lahari

  • Jhumpa Lahari, winner of the Pulitzer Prize winner for this very book brings an interesting collection of stories from Boston and beyond giving us an insight on Indians abroad set in the past. The similarities that still exist in the present society amongst Indians in North America are something that one would find to be interesting. She’s also the author of ‘The Namesake, another of her interesting book, which I’m planning to read anytime soon. At least before the movie is out. Yes it’s going to be released soon, a Mira Nair movie starring Tabu, Irrfan Khan. But that’s another story.

  • The stories don't have grand passions and tumultuous relationships, or dramatic plots. Instead, they exquisitely detail the thoughts of one individual about a period of his or her life. For example, a woman who is having an affair with a married man and watches him go back to his wife each week. Or a child who goes to an immigrant woman's home each day after school, and sees her deal with homesickness, loneliness and isolation.

  • Then again we have an interesting story, which by the way is the title of the book, and the story ‘Interpreter of Maladies.’ Talks about a guide who also is a translator for a Gujarati doctor in Orison. He interprets patients’ troubles and pain to the doctor who does not know the local language. This is something one of his tourist who is from North America finds romantic and how their story is portrayed in the chapter is very interesting.

  • My favorite pick is ‘The treatment of Bibi Haldar’ It is a beautiful story about Bibi a misfit young woman living in a rundown building in Calcutta and is taken care of by her cousin and his wife. The story moves on from there to how they leave her at her plight and go away. How her life takes a major twist is very interesting and you’ll absolutely enjoy the climax of this story.

  • All in all a collection that definitely deserves the award in fact, it exposes facts and at the same time makes us deeply involved and reflective. Certainly a must read for any one and everyone.


Restaurant Review - Firangi Paani

  • 9:00 PM on a Wednesday night, my colleagues planned to go to ‘Firangi Paani.’

  • We left behind our midweek blues and were all set for revelry of sorts. Firangi Paani is a lounge bar at the top floor of Kstar Mall. It is near Diamond Garden in Chembur, opposite to ‘The Barista.’ On ‘Wednesday - Ladies Night,’ Firangi Paani offers complimentary drinks before 9:45 PM to girls, and a ‘buy one get one free,’ for stags. We stepped in and the place is a buzz with, ‘Cindy Lauper, Bon Jovi and Queen. The leather upholstered seats, and tall bar-stools added to the retro feel. The bar is decorated with wine glasses hanging upside down. The bartenders juggle in rhythm as they poured our favorite cocktails. The walls brizzle with intense graffiti, British Shields, and Swords a sculpture of a Jazz artist on the Sax, and of the great comedians, ‘Laurel and Hardy.’ On the big screen TV. screen a cricket match played silently.

  • “Vodka with orange juice. I want to try orange instead of Sprite,” said Neha

  • “Me too,” said Sandy

  • Raj, Darshana and I ordered beer while we listened to music.

  • “On a Saturday Night you will find the hottest guys and gals of Chembur out to party!” said  Jeetu, who was in his elements while dancing to the retro numbers.

  • “The Paneer Chilly is delicious,” Sandy, the foodie munched on the starter.

  • We had ordered more starters: Chicken Frankie and Veg Rolls. For main course we ordered Veg and Chicken Schezwan Rice. The food is splendor and it does sink in to your taste buds.

  • It cost us Rs 1000 per head with the drinks.

  • This place is a haven for retro music and pub atomosphere lovers. Theyhave live bands play here sometimes. That does not happen elsewhere. Firangi Paani is an ideal spot for those who want to hang out with friends over the weekend.

  • Firangi Paani – 3rd Level, Kstar Mall, Opposite Diamond Garden, Chembur (E)

  • Tel: 02225208704/05/06/09

  • *Currently under renovation.

  • © Copyright 2010 Srini. All rights reserved


Large Format Retail Chains and their impact on resellers / assemblers

  • “I want to buy a laptop for my father at a reasonable price. Let’s go to HyperCity and check out the new Samsung N120 or Gateway Laptops.” said Swapnil Ingle a resident of Borivali, Mumbai. This is the same person, who used to work with Transworks Computer systems in Lamington road and assemble PCs for other customers back in 2001. Now he is a business executive who helps his dad in an MLM sales company and needs a laptop for the very same reason.

  • I ask myself a very simple question. For a person who may have known the ins and outs of the traditional reseller / assembler market and has been back and forth at Lamington Road in Mumbai, why would he want to buy products for himself through LFR (Large Format Retail) stores? Is this a dawn of a new era? Are LFR pushing back conventional resellers/assemblers?

  • Way back in 2001 when assembled computers were a trend and resellers and assemblers ruled the market, consumers had very tedious task of running around to fetch quotations from different assemblers. With an AMC and sure shot service near your home, buying a computer / laptop from a dealer around the corner rather was more convenient than a branded Compaq Presario or an HP Laptop. Those were the times when profit margins were based on the whims and fancies of each reseller / assembler and that was the boom for the industry. As shown in the recently released movie, ‘Rocket Singh – Salesman of the Year’ it all boiled down to the competition between local dealers and assemblers. They could decide on the prices as well as service that they need to provide to the consumers and corporations alike. All these aspects were completely controlled by companies like AYS and Rocket Corp. as shown in the movie. Branded laptops and desktops were a bane because of the lack of after sales service or proper branding and accessibility in itself. The only names in Laptops and Notebooks we heard back then were IBM, Gateway, HP and Toshiba. The availability of service centers was also a huge problem while going in for a branded laptop/ desktops. In addition, the prices were skyrocket high, who is to blame with the demand being so low?

  • Enter 2010, the scenario has completely changed. Desktops are outdated. Every other person you know has a laptop / netbook, that too bought from either HyperCity, Ezone, Big Bazaar or Vijay Sales. There has been a plethora of Malls in and around metropolitan cities like Mumbai, New Delhi, Gurgaon or Bangalore for that matter. This has given the companies like, IBM, HP, and Compaq, Lenovo etc to display their products and reach masses thanks to ‘Windows Shopping’ pun intended. There are many benefits that LFR stores have come up with as opposed to the conventional resellers or assemblers back in 2001.

  • When asked why he wants to purchase a laptop from an LFR instead of getting it through a conventional reseller/assembler Swapnil said. “There are many benefits that LFR offer me and it’s very convenient for me to actually go and buy it from them as compared to the counterparts.”

  • Many people in today’s age visit shopping malls almost every day. Awareness of notebooks, laptops and netbooks such as Acer, Sony, IBM, HP, Lenovo, Compaq, are more evident thanks to these large format retail stores. Besides seeing the netbooks in advertisements of size zero Sony Vaio by Kareena Kapoor we get the option of actually feeling the products and taking them for a test drive only at stores such as these.

  • Add to that companies such as Gateway and Wipro who have recently hit the market with their sleek series of notebooks and netbooks get a broad platform to display themselves more effectively. Today an LFR store is not just an outlet to go and buy a Laptop of our choice but also a haven for Geeks and gadget lovers alone to check out and keep themselves abreast of all the latest notebooks, gadgets that are raging a fire in the market.

  • To add to that many LFR stores have tie-ups with financing companies and provide with instant loans with executives present to guide each consumer right down to the tee.

  • “I would feel more secure and trust the genuineness of the product more in an LFR as opposed to a conventional reseller / assembler especially when it comes to software and Operating systems.” Swapnil says, as he had been a part of the industry a while ago. To add to that he says that LFR stores have a good amount of freebies and offers that go along with the sale of notebooks on display that make for a very lucrative offer for us to buy the products from them.

  • However, the most important aspect that LFR chains have brought to light is the actual feel of shopping for a netbook / laptop to be able to touch and check out the configuration before going in for a particular product. With the boom of LFR, stores selling netbooks of compact sizes every consumer will get an option of trying out variety before actually getting himself a sleek and stylish model.

  • "The large format retail chains have emerged as an additional sales channel for us to reach customers," said Ms Shuchi Sarkar, Head Marketing, Personal Systems Group, HP India. However, HP India has not been seriously tracking the sales through such retail chains, Ms Sarkar said, adding that it was too early to comment on the potential.

  • Currently, for Acer, sales through organized retail chains account for a fraction of its overall India sales, said Mr. S. Rajendran, GM Sales and Marketing, Mobility Display Products Group, Acer India.

  • Courtesy – The Hindu Business Line

  • With everything going wireless and compact in today’s age as shown on a TV show Netguru, Swapnil says there would be a time where PCs or desktop computers would be outdated just as the 386,486 or P1s. Every other kid on the block would carry a compact, portable netbook not even a Laptop for that matter. We await an era where netbooks would be just as common as mobile phones in this country and that day is not far away.

  • © Copyright 2010 Srini. All rights reserved


A conversation indeed!

  • It had been a while we had met,

  • Talked about love, life and goals we had set.

  • For ourselves we had no dreams in particular,

  • Yet we had a belief which we shared together.

  • With that belief we decided to go with the flow,

  • Make the most of our conversation before we go.

  • Yes, to each other we had a lot more to say,

  • Cause of destiny we met, and in a very strange way.

  • We hadn’t met in quite a long while and it had been certainly a long time since we actually allowed ourselves to flow into the reality that we had built for ourselves. We have had a strong belief in our own expression of thoughts and somewhat felt a strong connection to begin with. It’s as though we were made for each other and could talk on for eternity and over again. How can I forget the way we met each other. It was surreal, surreal but true. Now when I look back at how we met and where we are at I feel a certain sense of disbelief as to why it all happened in the first place. Life is so unpredictable and life is so strange in it’s own ways. It keeps leading you to so many paths and so many new unexplored locations that you keep wondering where to go?

  • It had to be a nice time, a few starters, a couple of drinks and a conversation that we usually have not necessarily about something. That’s the best part about the conversation we have. It doesn’t need to have a meaning nor a reason but it enlightens us and yes we get to know how much more we are just like each other. That made a difference to our relationship, a belief that is impending to tell us something, a sign that we always knew in our hearts.

  • We started talking about our lives and for the first time we actually opened up to each other and felt great to be listened to. With each expression that I saw on her face it felt as though she was in tune with what I had to say and for the first time I felt uninhibited to talk about my feelings and tell her how I perceived life and how I went about my beliefs. It felt sweet to know, how I expressed my deep thoughts was actually understood by someone.

  • We always had this chemistry together and she always had told me that, but despite all that this day was certainly remarkable in all the times we have had conversations because of the fact we were able to actually relate to what each other was saying without the fear of being judged nor being misunderstood. How I wish life was this clear. So many times there are misconstrued communications and beliefs that are completely incorrect and relationships begin to get into the humdrum of certain same beliefs. So many times expectations are more when there are names to relationships, so many times assumptions disturb a portrayal of a relationship in particular and that is why we want to make everything like this society has for us. The society tells us to be true, tells us to be right and probably tells us to do what they want or they perceive as truth. How difficult it is for everyone to understand that?

  • It may not be truth or for that matter mean anything to anybody, yet it has to be told. It needs to be heard by everybody, but not really important as long as it meets the norms of the society. The world is a place for us to wear these masks and clothes that they want us to and in fact everyone is more than happy to do so, with a different penchant for keeping it that way.

  • How I wish someone understood these feelings and truly it was a day to remember for she did understand what I said that day and we let ourselves flow into the reality that we had built for ourselves. Thanks a lot for making my belief in our relationship strong and hope life has more for us.

  • © Copyright 2009 Srini. All rights reserved