Sunday, September 23, 2007

Pursuit of Happyness

I watched "pursuit of happyness" tonight and had to write about it. Hence this post. I am probably the last person among my friends to watch this movie, because I missed it when it was released in theatres. Some spare time and no one around prompted me to watch this movie. Selfish as it may sound, I like to watch movies like this alone. I have no words to describe how I felt after watching this movie. It did not make me cry or sympathize with "Chris Gardner" it simply re-affirmed my faith in life. I cannot be melodramatic for the sake of writing and say that it was a life changing experience, but if there is such an experience, this was it. Most of the movie really shows how you tackle the ups and "mostly" downs of life and the fact that giving up is never the solution. But its really not the morale of this movie which inspires you because at some level we all know it. Its the brilliant screenplay and Will Smith and "Chris Gardner" that will haunt me for a long time to come. And so will "this is the part I call Happyness". After all that is what we all search for and very few of us are fortunate enough to realize. Everything in our lives become meaningless after a point in time other than happiness. Its a difficult question in all our lives. We can pretend to be as happy as we like but its a feeling from within. When we actually attain this divine state called happiness, everything else fades into oblivion. To quote a friend of mine "I don't want to know how much money you earn, I just need to know if you are happy."

Friday, September 14, 2007

Bangalore Blues

The rain outside stopped for a breather, and then started again, this time a little subdued. My second week in my new home went by pretty uneventfully. For the last two weeks I am comig to terms with Bangalore and its ways. Six years in one city makes you get used to doing things in a way and then comes the change and you tend to become resistant to it. Change however is the only constant in life as the wise men say. Here are some of my observations about this city. First the pros. An absolutely fantabulous weather that wraps this city in a cosy bed of roses. Mornings are sometimes sunny and sometimes cloudy but never too hot. evenings are invariably cool and sometimes very cold when compared to other Indian cities with almost its daily quota of rain. This weather according to localites is very cliched. The Pub culture here is probably the best in India. You are almost assuraed of having a good time on the weekends if you visit them. Especially for the music they play. The crowd is a healthy mixture of young and middle aged people with a sprinkle of foreigners. The food is decent if you know the right places. Thanks to some of my friends I have only had decent and good food in this city as of now. The other remarkable fact about this city is that it is a safe place for women. Here a lady can actually travel after 10 pm without getting raped unlike Delhi. Now for the Cons and there are quite a few of them. The only half decent mode of transportation in this city is an Auto if you do not have a car. The fare is something I have never seen before. It is like travelling in a chopper. Next comes the language. people understand hindi and english pretty well but are quite reluctant to speak the national language for some very wierd reason. And of course then there is the traffic. Getting stuck in a traffic jam for an hour or more is very common and the seasoned crowd here takes it very casually. All in all a pretty remarkable place to be in if you like diversity, the question though is for how long.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Adios Nudeli

31st August 2007 will not be an ordinary day in my book of memories. The reasons are plenty. For one, it is my last day in New Delhi, a city which has been my home for the last six years. I still remember the scorching summer day of 25th June 2001 when I entered this city with a suitcase full of clothes and a world of curiosity in my eyes. I hope for some rain tomorrow when I leave this city. I would be lying, if I pretend that I liked Delhi. In fact I hated it for its harsh weather and harsher people (or so it seemed to me). Six years later, I still hate the weather of Delhi (especially the summers) but the harsh people around me have slowly disappeared and have been replaced with a cocoon of people I love spending time and sharing my life with. I call them friends. I recently met a gentleman who has spent the last 30 years of his life in the Caribbean’s. I expressed how I thought that he was a lucky man and how I would do anything to see what he has seen. To this he said “the world is always around you, if you have the eyes to see it”. A little poetic I agree, but true. Guess that’s what happened to me in terms of the people of this city, just learnt to see them through their strong exterior armors shielding their actual selves. Staying away from home is always a challenge. Anyone who has done so, can validate that. But it brings out the best in you and makes you a man. A philosophy I always believed in. I am a changed man from what I used to be six years ago, although a part of that also includes the extra 10 kilos I have put on around my waist. Whatever said and done, will miss Delhi when am gone. Will miss its long and broad roads, will miss the occasional rain in the midst of scorching heat and bitter cold. Will miss visiting the places around Delhi with friends, Flextronics and all its memories and will miss the “live for the day” spirit embedded in the vein of the city. Change is the only constant in life, and there is nothing we can do to change that. I have lived every moment of the last six years in this city and as I leave, I leave behind some special moments, some special places and some special people that define my insignificant life. Am saying adios to Delhi, only to come back here whenever I get a chance. For now I need to go finish my packing .......................

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Lazy me

Dont't let my picture fool you. If I am looking like a lazy and laid back person, that is not true. I am ten times more lazy or laid back than I look in this ptcture. Yeah, thats me, simply love the lazy aspect of life. Sunday afternoons can make me go for relentless afternoon siestas. Maybe I will wake up a few times in the middle but then due to the tiredness of oversleeping, will go off to sleep again. Saturday evenings can make me stare at the tv set for hours without actually watching it, and damm those awesome fish tank screensavers.... just can't seem to get my eyes off them once they come on my laptop's screen. I cannot claim to be a writer or poet because, staring for me is a form of relaxation and not though process. Worrying thing is what will happen to me in ten years time. Hmmmmmm, let me think about that for a while.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Event....Full or Less

Someone once said "lead an eventful life".... I don't know if it can be otherwise. One more year passed by when I celebrated my nth birthday yesterday. It was a slow sunday and I woke up to a lovely bouquet of flowers in front of me. It was from office. A gesture even a professional cribber like me had to admire. There was nothing much in planned for the day since I am still searching for a reason as to why we celebrate birthdays in the first place. In spite of all the romanticism associated with birthdays, am still not sure what is the big achievment in being born. I guess its all the other things we achieve in life which makes our b'days so special for the simple reason that none of it would have otherwise happened.
During the course of the day all I did was answer some hundred telephone calls and replied to a host of messages. Started thinking somewhere along the way that what is it that I did or has happened around me in one year's time. Apart from parting ways with my ex organization and leaving the organization that I went to, could not remember anything significant. A little deeper introspection revealed a few other things like buying a few gizzmos, visiting at least 6 different places around delhi and trying out some "new to me" joints.
However, when I turned my attention to what has happened around me, here is what I saw; HSS got sold for the 3rd time, Raman Roy opened his fourth BPO, Quatrro. Roger Federer won the Wimbledon for the 5th time in a row defeating Raphael Nadal. A blueline delhi bus ran over a child for the 11th time. Kolkata got flodded by pre-monsoon rains for the 200th time in a row and the authorities were taken by surprise for the 200th time in a row. There were some first timers as well. Lalu Yadav took an IIM class for the first time. The "elite" political circle of this country decided to elect a women as the president for the first time among others. I must say that it was an eventful birthday for me.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Die Hard Version 4.0

Yesterday I watched Die Hard 4.0 and must confess that in spite of all the flaws that this movie has, enjoyed every second of it. There is always a debate going on in the intellectual circle of this world as to what defines a good movie. Well, I am no intellectual but have always categorized good movies as the ones which finish off in the blink of an eye and leave a lasting impression on your mind. Version 4.0 fits the bill. Or I should say Detective John Mclaine fits the bill. This movie is all about the screen presence of Bruce Willis and some mind blowing graphics that Hollywood was always popular for. Bruce Willis was a middle aged guy when he acted in Die Hard (the first movie in this series). Now he looks like one of the pre-historic dinosaurs of Jurassic Park. But looks apart his screen presence is still very strong. The story of this movie is probably the weakest of all the 3 die hards. A bunch of computer geeks start a pandemonium in DC by hacking every possible computer hub that exists in the east coast and since everything is run by computers in US, the entire country comes to a standstill. Of course to add to all this there is some NSA and CIA conspiracy embedded somewhere. Apparently after 9/11 NSA created an IT hub to back up all financial data of the entire country in one facility and in case of any emergency all data automatically starts downloading into this hub. Funnily enough this hub is guarded by only 5 or 6 guards with light weaponry and is the target or rather a sitting duck for the terrorists this time around. That is really all the story that this movie has and I don’t think anyone who is watching this movie is really bothered about this story. The excitement of the movie lies in the climax of the small action sequences and how they have been portrayed in the screen. The cinematography is simply awesome and I would be surprised if it is not nominated for Academy Awards for best action sequence or rather sequences. I was not very interested to watch this movie when it was released. One reason of course was because it is a sequel. We all know the reputation of sequels. Besides who adds a suffix like 4.0??? It is like implementing version control in power point presentations. However I did go for it and enjoyed it thoroughly. It is a must watch for all who have forgotten the taste of a good action movie by watching too much romantic comedies and dramas. In short someone like me. Now I wonder when they will come up with Die Hard 4.0.1.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

My Newest Toy

A couple of weeks ago I finally went for it. The long debated wireless Internet connection. Months of thorough research about wireless data cards finally came to an end when I bought the Reliance Netconnect Data Card. My options were slim anyways because of the fact that my laptop does not have a PCMCI slot. Therefore I required a USB connection. My options were Tata Indicom and Reliance, since they are the only ones to market the USB card at present. Tata was charging almost 1K higher than Reliance and both were promising the same speed. Of course I knew that the promised speed of 153 kbps is wishful thinking since that is too high a speed to get from GPRS Technology. I also read the endless criticisms posted on the web about how reliance cheats its customers by over promising and not delivering. You can say that for once I decided to get cheated first hand. The sheer concept of wireless Internet connectivity was too sumptuous a prospect and I had to try it.
I have been using the card for a little over 2 weeks now. The USB modem came from HUAWEI Technologies (China). It looks pretty neat and weighs almost nothing. I have opted for a plan called "Freedom at Night" that offers unlimited connectivity and download between 10 pm and 6 am and I thank my lucky stars for choosing this plan. In my daily usage of 2 to 3 hours at night, I am somehow managing to download 50 mb of data per day. That with an uptime of about 85 to 90%. The data transfer speed that I am getting is about 40 to 90 kbps which is pretty decent considering that my office T1 can offer a best of about 250 kbps. The download speed is anywhere between 4 KB and 15 KB depending upon website latency. All in all it is a pretty decent toy to have if you have a nomadic life like me. At least you can get all the junk work and some important work done from home without having to run to a cyber cafe every time. On a lighter side, my Internet connection always seem to work whenever I do some junk work like orkut and Internet radio. It seems to stutter only when I try to get some office work done. Keeps me motivated though.