Another view of Mumbai's Ballard Pier from my desk. May be I am too busy between meetings so no time to romance with my valentine. Well, heart shape balloons floating around our office here and there reminding me of the special day. Due to meetings and tight schedule I even missed the chocolate distribution. C'est dommage!!! :( . Although enormous work-pressure but many thoughts are coming across to make evening better. Let's see if it works or not.
From Sunday evening I keep waiting for middle of week i.e., Wednesday as next weekend looks too far to me. If there is any special occasion planned for Wednesday evening it really cheers me up. On last Wednesday it just happened that Pamela called me at work saying that she is going to come to VT (CST) all by herself boarding a local train (…..for first time).Thanks to Meher for encouraging Pamela to come over in the first place.
Well, Pamela did panic at last part of her journey as she was all alone in the wagon with two transsexuals sitting beside her. Moreover, on not seeing me at VT she vented her anger on me over phone as I was to meet her there. Its true, that I somehow always get entangled in work or some urgent phone call when ever I need to be on time to meet her. On top of it her phone battery was also running low. Somehow we did meet up without much problem and I am not that good writer to juice up that meeting. Anywayz, as per plan we met Meher in front of GPO and headed to Kala- Ghoda via Cab.
Kala-Ghoda is crescent shaped plaza nestled around an array of heritage buildings such as Elephantine College, the David Sassoon Library and the Watson Hotel. It is named after a statue which is long gone now of King Edward VII astride a black horse. This plaza is around South Mumbai which is fast emerging as the arts hub of downtown Bombay. Meher being born and brought up in south Mumbai she knows streets like back side of her palm. After walking across all those gorgeous office buildings from bygone years we reached Horniman Circle Park where French rock band “Merzhin” was to perform for the Kala-Ghoda festival organized by Alliance Française, Mumbai.. This festival actually takes place inorder to improve the existing infrastructure of the area and giving it a distinct identity as Mumbai's art district. And this festival basically brings together work from various fields like arts, theater, film, music, literature, dance, heritage walks, exhibitions, children's events offering an interactive cultural mélange for Mumbaites.
Anyway, the introduction from the Director was very "French" as he mentioned if you want a good life learn French. What a snobbish French way of welcoming audience. Point to be shared is - a very different experience as we enjoyed the concert sitting on chairs ;) ...hmm a rock concert and sitting!!! The band was good and they tried their best to get people rocking but it did not work after all Indians..... that too on Wednesday evening.
From there after an hour we left for dinner walking two blocks we found ourself in front of Café Mocambo. It has two levels of seating.; the interior is decent but not stunning. The menu is mostly continental and parsi with lots of Pasta dishes to choose from. Other then that lamb, steak and lasagna are also available. They have standard fridge displaying yummy desserts - really yummy! Many phirangis also hang out here.
Ballard Estate is old corporate park in Mumbai where most of the buildings have high ceiling and windows a left-over from British Raj. I feel very fortunate as my workplace is on this street and moreover when I get bird's eye view of Mumbai from my desk.
For lunch, I have walked past Britannia before but for some or other reason I did not entered. It is one of Bombay's famous old Irani (Persian) restaurants situated at Ballard Estate. This no-nonsense, no-frills, 90-year-old restaurant is the last of a dying breed of establishments once found on every corner of South Mumbai. The environment is simple and functional, with little room for extras like presentation and ambiance. There is no love greater then love of eating - is their motto. It is mentioned on the menu food will be served within 10 minutes and they really do so. A must if you don't like vegetarian food you might want to drop-in. There is a different menu for each day of the week. Apart from the fact that it is the stuff of legends, the building was designed by George Wittet, the architect of the Gateway and the Museum.
I was lucky one as there was Berry-pulao that day one of their speciality. Berry pulao (a version of the Iranian zereshk polow) is the outstanding signature dish, made with succulent spiced boneless mutton (or chicken), fragrant long-grain basmati rice, and tart barberries imported from Iran. Though it was rich and heavy but its worth - once in a while.
Micro$oft is doing a round of business and technical launch show around India. The products are Exchange 2007, Office 2007 and Vista. I attended only a brief session @ Hyatt.
Well, somehow my name was not there even though I registered 10 days before the event.
And my business card with orange and blue dots did not help much to get attention from those desk people. Anyway, it was solid 40 minutes of work for me – replied emails, chat with business contact got updates from their team – thanks to CDMA mobile card. This picture of Mumbai’s famous "dabbawalla" got my attention which is installed in the down-stair lobby as an object of art.
Well lots of promises about security from Micro$oft, but I got bit scary about the new “Office Groove 2007” as it seems it uses port 80 to connect and update sharepoint server. I think I need to know more before I make my final take. A new mantra was “blog” as speakers were mentioning new search capabilities; and used internet and blog as two different things. Sorry could not follow - does not blog stands for “Web-Log” in short.
Well it is M$ at the end of the day – every time they promise – “We are more OPEN with our new version of software so your heterogeneous network components can work seamlessly.” But then they redefine new standard for their implementation of “OPEN” standard. And people in the technological world have to take two steps back with one step forward. Leave apart, let’s not get into those details.
I might miss a good lunch to rush back to work. Goodies are welcome M$: D
Well another day! Some techie note ; upgraded the web site to the latest beta release of Wordpress. And I found some strange behaviour. This is what I put forward to the mailing list. But with few minute of research found the root cause.
Well this post is a dark one-
Aaj fir dil hai kuchh udaas udaasjaane kyun ek mayusi si chhayi haiaaj fir palkon pe pani haibheer mein hoon fir kyun ye tanhai hai jaane kyun bebas aur beychain hai dil mera....
In simple words, things around me are going crazy.... restless mind as there are loved ones who are dealing with the PROBLEM on the ground with hard reality; facing it more harsh then me who is being updated with phone calls only.
Anyway, recently I came across one site which tells about sleeping. I assume you all must be knowing about good effects of sleeping. According to the sleep test
I show symptoms of sleep apnea, a potentially serious sleep disorder.
Then I took another online test – and the results is
Might have moderate depression
Well that is all ;I feel good now as I hit the "publish" button
There were massive bomb blasts last summer in Mumbai local trains. After that now there are constant reminders for the commuters to be on alert and check their surroundings. It is logistical nightmare to manage the massive number of commuters who takes train every day in Mumbai. In simple words, “impossible” will be closest word I can pick.
Few months back after lots of planning and public announcement Mumbai Police conducted a security drill where every passenger was supposed to pass via metal detector in two Main Terminus in the evening but after few moments it was clear that police can not handle the stream of passengers in lakhs and crores as they were heading home and it was abandoned. The good news is that it is indeed possible to check if the need arises but impossible on regular basis.
Although, there is always one or two man in khaki uniform in each station. But those people physically look so unfit with their bulging waistline that I personally do not feel any safe with them. Its just a game of probability in Mumbai terrorist attack. If you happen to be at Mumbai in the wrong time at wrong place you are in danger. No one can save you in Mumbai as it runs by “Bhai” (common con for the Bhai). There is always a strong nexus between underworlds with every business that flourishes at Mumbai. Be it movie making, real estate, jewelry --- just name it.
So till next time Mumbai rocks again – safe and happy commuting – Mumbaians.
Well I got it. After lots of deliberation I upgraded my choice to K790 from K750. The big difference is price and features to say in simple words. I heard in recent time James Bond used this same phone in his last movie. Not sure what all other accessories Mr.Q added for him on the film.
I wanted to buy a camera phone as that will be handy to capture events. I remember spending $250 in Fry’s for Handspring Camera module in 2002. Oh! That looks like dinosaurs in comparison now.
Here are some pictures from the camera. The first one is of GPO(General Post Office) Mumbai; I was amazed when I went there first time. It is a true heritage from British time in Indian history. Unfortunately, it could have been better maintained like a heritage site. The design of “centenary hall” is so European with big round center desk.
The next picture is of the newspaper stand near my office. Well, a contrast from Pamela’s picture Paris news-paper stand. ;)
Back to my phone I just want to make a note to future/current owner to use MyPhoneExplorer a freeware to sync. You can sync with Thunderbird for your address book - not being stuck with M$. Still waiting from Hutch customer support for a simple MMS settings to be downloaded on my phone so that I can access internet and other cool features; according to their SLA it might takeup to 72 hours and I am still waiting :(
- 1999/Y2K was special as I was on alert being an I.T guy.
- 2001/2002 I realized the hard reality of lay-off as my close co-workers were asked to go. Always these layoff happens in the last week of December ?
- 2002/2003 More co-workers joined the old group and my work location was getting closed. 31st December was their last day at work, holy crap what next for New Year?
- 2003/2004 Nothing special – hanged out for 30 minutes or so on Champ-Elysees in Paris. Lots of confused, drunken, yelling people around. Later in the night it got worst. 26th December Earthquake in Iran, lots and lots of people died.
- 2004/2005 – Pamela was in India; hanged out with Murali – who was not in a happy mode either, a cold winter night in Paris. What a nightmare Tsunami in South-East Asia struck on 26th December.
- 2005/2006 – Best of the last few years spent in center of Vedanta Ramakrishna,Paris with other people. Nothing much happened around the globe. It was spiritual and enlightening.
- 2006/2007 – Well alone again; And the news of Saddam did dampened my mood to write the post. I am not a fan of him but I do not support death penalty.
There is no real newspaper to read in India at this moment. Well I know I made a big statement but could not start in better sarcastic way. Hold on, let me explain from my past to present. I was thinking abut this topic for a while a now as I see so many newspapers under my nose while going to work by local train in the morning. It is almost like I read every other headline from three to five major publishing houses.
Newspaper means many things to so many people but for me it surely means a starting of a new day with news from yesterday,today and tomorrow. A cup of hot beverage in one hand and a newspaper in the other will be best way to start my day.
I remember once the newspaper used to be very boring in black and white. That time there was no mass “offset” printing for newspaper in India. The printing was not very clear and it used to be thin with only 8 to 10 pages.
If that make you think I am old ;) I was hooked to newspaper quite early. Then suddenly one morning came offset printing with half-tone picture of famous events in rare occasions. I remember it lasted for few years. Then suddenly we found ourselves with the color supplement for the weekend. It was exciting to check on weekly basis those glossy papers; some times we would save them to cover books :D
With time newspaper started to become heavier in weights and started to loose focus from main news. The downhill journey started. The focus of editors turned to advertisement to make news paper cheaper for making more profit.
Like addicts we got used to read about all those cocktail parties in front page and City Complements.
This turned a golden way for the newspaper publisher to print photos of celebrities. All celebrities like to show off little or more depending on their personalities. May be we can call it a golden hen for the editors. Indian society being very hypocratic it was an easy way to publish swimsuit photos of Ms. Anderson with out any one complaining. Indian educated conservative middle class adores the same. The whole news paper has become a tabloid. That way Ms Stone & Spears makes exclusive headline.
May be with economy doing good everyone is having a feel-good-factor; no one really wants to read real news about the global climate change or war on Iraq - everyone is happy in their little world. People are also bored with reading Indian politics the same story of corruption, vote bank – religion or caste from our politicians.
It is all most free can you believe that you can get one full year subscription for just Rupees 199(less than 4 Euros). That means less then One Rupees a day where One rupee can not buy any thing in India now.
P.S. Now as I try to complete this post after almost a month – the evening is yet to come for going out for a good restaurant.