Saturday, November 28, 2009


If someone asks me the similarity between deepavali holidays, pongal holidays back in India and the Thanksgiving holidays down here, there is only one. You start planning to study the whole semester syllabus in this 3 - 4 days holiday(very realistic plan, eh?), and as usual end up waking up with monday morning blues realizing the very fact that the books weren't even touched during the holidays(taking solace on the thought that there is always Plan-B).

After hearing about the Great Black Friday discounted thanksgiving sale, Keeping the academics aside, I applied serious thought on the goods that I might need in the near future (ie, until the next Thanksgiving), probably an external hard disk? (No use pal, Pirated films/torrents are banned here. the whole purpose of owning a external hard disk is lost). I considered everything from iPhone to ingi-marappa(Ginger-candy), nothing clicked.

Before zeroing up on anything, I was in smith haven mall along with KB moving from apple store to JC Penny et all stores in the mall. My already stocked up wardrobe prevented me from going for any dress purchase and after 6 hours of roaming in the mall, I still came out empty handed. Habba, my wallet wasn't deflated by this Thanksgiving, Hope the same trend continues until I am a student desi.

Solution for the annoying ticking sound problem in Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala)

Recently I upgraded from ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) to ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala). From the moment it booted it gave this annoying ticking sound through the speakers and also through the headphone every 10 -15 seconds. Grrr...

Extensive googling lead me to the solution. here it goes,

* Open /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf
* Goto the last line and comment out
options snd-hda-intel power_save=10 power_save_controller=N

Now restart or reload the module and this annoying sound problem would stop for good.

Courtesy: I thank the ubuntu forum members for posting the solution. The reason behind this bug and detailed discussion could be found in the following links

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Of Late, as kollywood is facing a dry run, in terms of giving super hits, I started watching other language films. In the past one month, I saw some good Telugu flix like Happy, Desamuduru, Tholiprema, and Magadheera. And Magadheera topped all in terms of the grandeur, storyline and screenplay.

Though Magadheera's storyline slightly resembled jackie chan starring "Myth" and the real life story of Prithivi Raj Chauhan & Samyuktha, I wouldn't underplay the storywriter's contribution. The technical brilliance in terms of the sets, stunts, fast screenplay/direction and heart melting music are the backbone for the film.The chemistry between Ram charan and Kajal had worked out really well.Ram Charan with his well built physic and commanding looks dominated the film followed by Kajal with her princess looks and dressings.

The Epical part of Magadheera is the best part of all.The Love for each other had been portrayed really well. The film had been shot at Rann of Kutch, Gujarat and then in Rajasthan and they had come out really well.The Epical battle is shot without any exaggerated stunts and thats why it is so real and final scenes of the Epic are so so touchy :( In fact, the epic love story, has kindled my desire to read through some of notable love stories in Indian History. No doubt Magadheera is a super hit in Andhra and far!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Goodies!! Goodies!!

* 1GB USB stick from Vmware
* T-Shirt from Bloomberg,
* Laptop keyboard Night lighter from Morgan Stanley
* Rucksack from Computer Associates (CA)
* Radium ball with built-in LED Circuitry from Riverbed
* Key chain from Falconstar
* Wall board + writer from Vmware
* Soda bottle opener from Acoustics concepts
* Unlimited Tasty Veg Pizza hosted by Microsoft and yummy dinner hosted by Vmware,

Thats all I could muster in a two and half hour job fair drive that happened in our college :) While this year gonna_be_pass-outs were trying hard to push-in their resumes down the stack, we freshers took this opportunity to grab them all. Because I was naive(curse my shyness and what_would_she_think_mentality), I missed out on some company T-shirts and backpacks :(

Some machakaarans like KB laid hands on Nikon CoolPix cameras too!! இப்படிக்கு அடுத்த ஸ்ப்ரிங் ஜாப் பாயர் இனாமிற்காக (கூட்டிஎஸ்) காக்கா போல் காத்துக்கொண்டிருக்கும் மாணவன்!!!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

All Alone, Along the Broadway

The last weekend trip to New York City gave me the much needed confidence, and this weekend I went alone to NY - Penn Station. Reminiscing the walk along the 5th Avenue that I did last week, I wanted to try out the oldest north-south through-fare "The Broadway" this time. I knew I was looking at a 4.8KM walk from Penn Station to my destination @ Allen Street which is in the middle of Chinatown. Keeping the ever viewable, mist shrouded(It was cold and raining) Empire State building spire as my guide, I ended up in broadway.

One good thing about NY city is the avenue and streets criss cross each other at right angles (the exception being broadway) and named serially using numbers, All you have to worry about is whether you are heading at the right direction, as you could move from one street to another very easily. As I walked along the Broadway, the glass & concrete monolithics came into view one after the other. The street hosted almost all the brand shops that one could think of and it was very tempting to enter them all and look around, but I continued on with my paatha-yatra. My next pit-stop was Union Square, a historic intersection in the broadway.

Union Square hosts the infamous Union Square Greenmarket Taking some snaps and apples, I moved into the Union Square park, which I heard has a statue of Mahatma Gandhiji. I went around the park and an active inquisitor followed me throughout, whether out of curiosity or perhaps for the apples that I had in my bag :) This stuart little showed no signs of fear and I took some snaps, u bet!! After moving around the park twice or more, I could not locate the Mahatma's statue. A fellow Indian manning the nearby newspaper stand pointed the direction in which I could find the statue. With a nod and a smile, I started moving in the direction he pointed. At a few steps from the main park, there was a small enclosed garden and atlast I found Mahatma Gandhiji statue in Union Square. I considered my sole purpose of the walking through the broadway fulfilled and headed towards allen street through Bowery unknowing of the high drama that was about to unfold in the Allen street. Contd... in the next post.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Recipies for life

Gone are the days when I used to dream of damn good chicks. Toor dal and spices from India shows up now and then in my dreams giving me a Deja vu experience. What looked attractive when I was in India doesn't get my attention anymore and what was common to get back home doesn't find a place here.

I have been away from home for around 6 years now, and my perspective continues to change and so does my understanding of life. From being a die-hard hotel food fan six years back, I converted myself to a connoisseur of home food after my 2 year stint in the college hostel. The next 4 years, I managed to eat at some hotel everyday and moved on. Though I know cooking, I never really did that full-time, now that I am donning that role too, slowly it dawns on me the travails of cooking everyday's every meal!!! So far, I never realized how hard it would be for my mother to cook day-in and day-out.

Guyz, If you are studying and staying with your parents, Its the best part of your life enjoy and eat well. If you are working somewhere in India and staying away from your home, do not wail for not getting good old home food, you always have the option and ability to pay and have some real good food at some hotel nearby. If you are staying in a foreign country, where the word "VEGETARIAN" is never heard of, where vegetables are stocked for weeks if not for months together, where people don't have any staple food like "RICE" or "WHEAT", where people live on DIET_PEPSI and DIET_COKE and call them as "SODAS", where vegetables are costlier than chicken, meat, beef and pork, where people cook once and "MICROWAVE" the rest of their life, where people call bread by different names like bagel, muffin and bun the only striking difference being the shape, where veg food means lettuce leaves + sliced tomato + chopped onion, where spices and dal prices gives you a heart-attack and the monthly grocery bill is the reason for your receding hairline well, you are not entirely alone. Find some solace in whatever you cook and in the fact "good chicks always like good chefs!!!"

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Resident Alien??

Accustoming to a new place is tough, and to a new place in another country is even more tougher. In the last 6 days of my stay here, I had some weird happenings and I would enlist them here

* The bank employee said "Thank You" 10 times in 2 minutes. Be it when I handed over the application form or when I confirmed the spelling of my name or when I typed the PIN first time, and when I typed it second time to confirm again I got a "Thank You" In return, I said "You are Welcome" twice after which I felt very awkward and stopped saying anything.

* These days when I go out, I prepare a short answer for the question "How are you doing?" Almost all whom your eyes meet up with ask that question. And by the time with an Indian accent I start saying something, they are out of earshot. Sometimes I look at the ground and walk or before anyone asks I quip the question and walk away he he!!! eppadi??

* The roads are all deserted (in comparison with our Indian traffic) and it is hard to find any houses/shops on either side of the highway, because of this all roads looks the same to me, and I cant keep anything as landmark to understand which part of the road I am in!!!

* After the long lecture about Fire alarm in the international orientation, and also the advice from seniors about how the whole world comes to you if you raise an fire alarm in this part of the world, I actually saw an alarm going up in college, and like we used to do in India at the HP office, I walked lethargically down the corridor, and hey presto the door opened and people were pouring out and almost ran over scaring the shit out of me!! By the time I came out of the building, Police, Fire brigade, etc etc were there on the entrance. I came back home and decided to have a chappathi and reheated it in the microwave. The timing I gave for it was more and it started smoking off. Knowing very well that the Fire alarm is going to go off any moment, my friend and myself took the oven and ran out of the house and opened it, and started waving the smoke out of it. Oh God!! we were saved!!! I stopped using the microwave after that.

* No one is allowed to wash their clothes in buckets and hang it in the balcony!!! One has to use the washing machine and drier only!!! To cap it all, one cant find a tap either in the toilet(that everyone knows) or in the bathroom (only a shower would be there!!)

* One good thing I did this week was enrolling with freewheels in college. Freewheels is an NGO organization who have a great passion for biking. I was given a cycle frame and I have to attend 3 classes 2 hrs each to assemble the whole cycle, End of the Day, I could keep the cycle with me till I leave the college. Thats cool isn't it?? If my father asks me what the hell did you learn from US after I return back. I could atleast tell him, I learnt how to fix a puncture!!! :)


And so I started from bangalore, leaving behind everything I own and I like. BIAL was good, and started giving the already-in-the-foreign-country-effect.There the whole bangalore group(15) was there, and so we entered in bidding adieu to the near and dear.The normal fear in the first flight experience from Bangalore -> chennai was not to be seen as we were travelling as a group. In chennai, the airport has become so bad, that it resembled a railway station.For the night we stayed at the retiring room in the airport @ 400/bed. Next day morning, we checked-in @ British airways, only to know that we wont get the seats together!!

The Plane was really big and somehow I swapped seats with a French lady to sit alongside Sharath. The flight's chief air-hostess resembled Bianca Castafiore of TinTin series, that I even thought of asking her to sing us "God save the Queen" :) I saw the flight takeoff in broad daylight for the first time from inside as the BLR->CHN was a night flight. 10.25 hr flight with the entertainment system programmes going around in loops drove me mad. Also, the breakfast was given in Indian breakfast time and the lunch in London Lunch time(Breakfast to lunch duration gap is 9hrs. Grr!!!).The plane circled around London and we saw the Big Ben, London bridge, and the new Olympic stadium being built near R.Thames.We got down at heathrow,London and was amazed at the consecutive flight take-off and landing taking place.

We ran across the Terminal-5 to catch our next connecting from London to New york which was in just 45 Min. The airport is truly out of the world and it is indeed unfortunate that we had to run off to our gate. The flight was waiting because of us, and we settled in slowly and then took-off to JFK. The person next to me was an American, and the next 3 hrs was a great comedy as he saw Ghajini-Hindi in the entertainment system and we both(myself and Rajesh) translated the same for him. At the end, he swore that he would buy a DVD of this and keep it next to memento in his DVD collection. :) The LON->JFK flight had a lot of entertainment channels and it kept me on the go. We landed in New York -JFK and I was received by my sister, Brother-in-law and in-laws. The First Flight EXPerience is one that many would remember throughout the life and I am no exception

Friday, July 17, 2009

Change - III

It's now official(I mean, things are finalized), and I can post it in my blog, the news what so far only my closest circle knows. No, I am not getting married, (Although some my friends and classmates are getting ready :( ) I am moving to New York from Mid August to pursue my Masters in Computer Science at The State University of New York @ Stony Brook aka Stony Brook University :)

The last one and half years, I was preparing for this. Wrote the GRE in last September and TOEFL in October and managed to scalp 1370 and 110 respectively. How I wished for a single window system for the US universities like we have for Engineering/Medicine here in TN for it was the toughest part of the process. Preparing the Statement of Purpose and getting the Recommendation letters was the next stage. Once through with the application part in early January, it was followed by an infinite wait, and in March, I got the first admit from Clemson University followed closely by University of California, Irvine, Arizona State University, University of Maryland - Baltimore County, North Carolina State University , State University of New York- Stony Brook and Ohio State University. The strike rate was much better than what I had thought (0.7)

Selecting SUNY-SB over others wasn't difficult for it is the best in Computer Science, ranks much better than others, fees is comparatively cheaper and more than that, some of my seniors and close friends are already there. what else would one need above all this? Getting the I20 docs took some time and eventually scaled the tension-filled visa interview and got the US visa stamped in the passport.

Whew!! It had been a tight rope walking all these days, managing the job and the aspiration to pursue MS. Now comes the most difficult part, leaving India... Change is always tough, and every change teaches some important lessons in life. What I would miss the most, needs a separate blog post by itself and hence I am leaving it for now.

Now waiting for Change - III to take over after the successful Change - II (Madurai to Bangalore) which happened two years back.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Into the Wild

"Into the Wild" is a travelogue movie sticking along the lines of "Motorcycle Diaries". It accounts the travel adventures of Christopher Mccandless from Atlanta to Alaska through Arizona, California and South Dakota and his stay in the unbearable Alaskan cold for 4 months. The film is a visual treat to nature lovers and people who have a strong inclination towards travelling. The tragedy in the end is quite disturbing.

The film is adapted from the novel "Into The Wild" by Jon Krakauer which in turn is inspired from the real life story of Christopher Mccandless. Through the protagonist's thought process, the film also dwells on the purpose of life and the pitiable state where the human society heads. The script writer must have experienced and savoured such thoughts and has come out with such scripts.

"I mean, the core of man's spirit comes from new experiences."

Though the central character's travels and adventures kindles a fire for outing in us, Going into the wild without any preparation or tools and his underestimation of the risks involved sometimes irks and I believe the tragedy in the end is a consequence of his own foolhardy. After all, Human life more valuable than any adventure.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kemmannugundi Trip

What started off as an ambitious trek started to fall apart as murphy's law reigned over the two days in whatever we did. This time the tripmates were Muthu, pramod, prabhu, DP, Sens, Subbi, Musi, Bharathi, Peter and thirukumaran. Armed with the Survey of India Maps and a compass, we boarded the shimoga express and got down @ Tarikere. From there we took a bus to Lingdanahalli and from there a Tata Ace(Kutti Yana) to Kemmannugundi. Finishing off the Idlies @ the Guest house canteen we boarded the jeep to reach the start of the trekking trail from KG to Mullayanagiri.

Our plan was to Camp that night @ Galikere. The nascent greenish cover due to the recent monsoon showers made a whole place a dreamland to be in.Enjoying the view and taking snaps then and there we moved on. At one point the trail started to lead through some dense cover and before we could enter that, Leeches started their attack.To avert them we took a detour from the trail to the top of the nearby mountain. At the top we rested and cleared up the sticking leeches and started moving forward.Again the dense cover obstracted our way, and the impending danger of another leech attack sent shivers down the spine. A light discussion revealed that even if we cross the forest cover uneventfully, another 6-7 hour trek awaits us to reach Galikere is what we estimated. Let down by this info, leech attack and the dense fog which covered up the whole trail we reluctantly retreated back. Taking a long circuitous route we were back in square one.

We rested our bones at a nearby scenic pond and continued with the lunch. Two or three trips back and forth from the start of the trail to KG town by walk to figure out a way to reach Galikere exhausted us and the efforts too went in vain as the jeep driver were scared to drive back from galikere after 6. Nowhere to stay(as one of the tent had a damaged rod) , we stayed for the night at the guesthouse. Next day, we hired two jeeps and we went through to Hebbe falls. It was a real jungle safari by all means (bumpy trail which a 4wheel drive alone could survive, thick forest cover) A punctured tyre saw us walking a little extra through the greenish path to the falls. The leech kept us at bay and finally we reached the falls. We were the only group at the falls by that time and we had a really good time bathing and playing in the waters. A marathon run through the unwinding path to the jeep to escape the leeches did the trick and we reached KG back in time to catch the bus to Tarikere. From there we came to Chickmagalur and from there to bangalore.

This place for sure needs another visit during the monsoons with much better planning. Probably next time we should take the route from Mullaiyangiri to KG.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta Trip/Trek

When it comes to deciding between blood sucking leeches/venomous King Cobra filled Agumbe and Wild elephants residing Gopalaswamy Betta, it is tough. During monsoon we thought it was a bad idea to visit Agumbe, the Cherrapunji of the south, that too especially for a trek. Hence we zeroed up on Himavad(meaning fog/snow in kannada) Gopalaswamy Betta(meaning mountain in kannada) near bandipur. The Inmates were Dilip, Sharath, Praveen V S, Rajesh, Chaitanya and myself. Too bad Shrikar missed this trip.

We burned the midnight oil @ Dilip's house as we had planned to start by 2 AM on Sunday. Jubilant over India's victory against Bangladesh in the ICC 20-20 match, we started exactly as planned. By 4:00, we were in mysore and by 5:30 we hit Gundlupet. The route to Himavad after crossing the Gundlupet village was scenic as it was a wide landscape without any object of obstruction except for the silhouette of the mounatin ranges at the horizon and the first rays of the sun illuminated the horizon in vivid flaming hues. The intermittent rain added spice to the whole scenary. By 6:00 we hit the Forest department gate at the foothills of the Himavad Gopalaswamy betta. Nothing to do except for sitting in the Car till 7:00 (the gate would be open only by then) as the the rain was taking control outside. As it started to drizzle, we ventured out to explore the area a bit and to click away something.

As we gathered some altitude, we started living up in the land of clouds and fog. It was a breathtaking experience to be there. It was a dream come true for me, to walk through fog filled dark roads with trees on the sides like an avenue, whose existence is visible only for the next 5 - 10 metres. The drizzle continued, partnering with the heavy violent winds and literally we had to stick hard to the ground. We took up some trails from the top to reach the adjacent ranges enjoying the lush green grasses and the fog filled pond on the way. Wave after wave, the army of clouds conquered the mountains, and we could not view the whole ranges filled with sholas + the green valleys (even though we were there till 1:00PM) The fresh elephant's dung here and there always reminded us of the prevailing danger somewhere near shrouded in the mist.

We reached a stone hedge formation and here we sat for sometime, chatting and then we started playing throwball, it was funny to watch the ball drifting, the direction in the heavy winds that was blowing throughout on the top.As another Praveen developed a cramp, we abandoned our trail from then on to the next range, as already we were at a distance from the vehicle. As we walked up and down landscape, the temple shrine came into view, and we headed directly to the temple instead of taking the roundabout route which we took up while coming up.

We went to the temple, and the main pooja was going going on, and the main priest orated about the sthala purana(history of the origin of temple) in kannada. From my friends, I came to know that it was built by a chola king 700 years back and is considered to be a papanasa(Free of all sins).While we were draped in the jerkin in that teeth clicking cold, I saw some devotees taking bath, whew!! what guts!!! My cell picked up the TN network, and the truth dawned in me that we were actually on the border just few good kilometres from Mudumalai.With a heavy heart, we descended down the Betta and were on the way back to the concrete jungle.In Sharath's slang, the trip was "Chammak"

Visit the pics @

Thursday, May 28, 2009

SHE's in my Life

Dark secrets linger in everyone's heart, and none lives, without the attempt to screen others from perceiving those.This is a literary attempt to break the tradition and share mine, but with the name filtered atleast till the concluding part.

SHE(Ms.X) knocked me down completely. I understood what "Love @ First Sight " really means. She wouldn't come over for a cup of coffee even if I ask her out, always calm & serene and out there in solitude. Shy enough to move away from the company of people, expecting one should take that extra effort to approach and then get on with her. Regularly, I started watching her from a distance, and was keen to avoid the direct eye contact, knowing very well that I couldn't take her sublime radiance.This went on for a while until the most unexpected thing happened.

When Fate had scripted something, You can't bypass that. Likewise, It was destined that we both have to meet by chance at Munnar. She was damn gorgeous, and I felt that she must be as pure as a virgin. Shrugging aside the shyness, we both got into speaking terms and thus it went on. I knew she was too good for me and was happy over the fact that she is atleast considering me and radiates a smile whenever I see her.

It was through her I came to know Ms.Y. Y is kind of a complicated character, but a very interesting one.She is a beauty in herself. When with her, time flies by very fast.She would tease you a lot, but thats what keeps me hooked to her. Though I am not too close to her, there are some who really are. I envy them with all my heart.

When you know someone very close or from childhood, you tend to overlook them, though they are beautiful. such was the case with Ms.Z, I know her from my childhood days, a girl next door character, very close and had been a great companion for me. She grew as I grew, and was in sync with my wavelength. She would understand my feelings like no other and cheer me up whenever I was in a low.

So are these three my girlfriends? would they fillup the back seat of my bike whenever I ride? No, they won't because, replace Ms.X with Nature, Ms.Y with Photography and Ms.Z with Books and read the previous paragraphs again. Dont try to hit me, its the caffiene in my head doing all this

In layman terms, these three(trekking, photography and books)does the job of a girlfriend very well, keeps me busy after office hours, sucks money like anything and also keeps me entralled and excited!!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Les Miserables

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo, an Epic tale of social injustice, politics, heroism and love, is setup in the early 19th(1800s) century French backdrop.The commercial success of this novel is etched in history that could be best explained by an anecdote. while on his vacation during the publishing of this novel, Hugo telegraphed the publishers a single "?" to know the outcome and for that the publishers replied with a single "!"

I read the abridged English translation by Norman Denny original version being in French. The protagonist of the story Jean Valjean steals a loaf of bread in his early years and then spends many years trying to escape his reputation as a criminal.Though he is a changed man and rises socially, he is not allowed to forget his past by the sadistic policemen Javert who is determined to expose him. Jean Valjean thus runs from city to city with his adopted daughter Cosette escaping the clutches of Javert and the vile designs of the villian Thenardier.Many characters chip in and add their part making it more interesting and gripping.

The narration is simply superb with vivid descriptions and the love between Cosette and Marius is best described. For something similar to the "Annalum Nokkinal avalum nokkinal" scene here goes the excerpt
"Thus for the first year Marius saw them(Cosette and her father) almost daily in the same place at the same time. He liked the look of the Man but took no interest in the girl.

For some six months he did not setfoot in the alleyway.Then one day he went back and there was the same couple,seated on the same bench. But as he drew near them he was struck by a change. The man was the same , but the girl was not. What he now saw was a tall and beautiful creature,soft chestnut hair flecked with gold, a forehead of marble, cheeks like rose petals, a pale sensitive skin, an exquisite mouth.


She was no longer a schoolgirl in a plush hat and woollen dress.She acquired taste as well as beauty and now dressed with simple, unpretentious elegance.

Marius went by their bench. the girl looked up at him and their eyes met. What message was to be read in her eyes? Marius could not have said. nothing and yet everything. A spark had passed between them.

What he had encountered was not the frank innocent gaze of a child.
There comes a day when every girl has this look in her eyes, and woe to him who encounters it! She looked steadily at him with a soft pensive glance that caused him to tremble from head to foot.Marius was in the first violent and entranced throes of a grand passion.
A single look had done it."
The beauty of Cosette is best described from this excerpt
"One day when Cosette was in the garden she heard old Toussaint say:'Has monsieur noticed how pretty Mademoiselle is growing?' She did not hear her father's reply, but Toussiant's words filled her with amazement. She ran up to her bedroom and looked hard at herself in the glass.

She uttered a cry,delighted by what she saw.
She was beautiful as well as pretty.Her figure had filled out, her skin was finer and there was a new splendour in her blue eyes.

In less than a month she was not merely one of the prettiest women in Paris, which is saying a great deal,but one of the best dressed, which is saying even more."

I found the following lines pretty amusing and quite true too!!
"Cosette for her part,was giving away nothing.without knowing precisely what was happening to her,she knew that something had happened to her and it must be kept secret.

There is a law applying to those youthful years of agitation and turmoil, those frantic struggles of first love against first impediments: it is that the girl never falls into any trap and the young man falls into all of them."

Compared to the vulgar description of the intimate relationship that most modern writers are ept at, Victor Hugo has handled that scene with a single sentence, but the meanings' conveyed(such are the powers of the contemporary writer!!!)
"The day after the wedding is one of solitude. We respect the privacy of the newly-weds and perhaps their late arising."

Les Miserables is a good book to savour and read...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

On a hat-trick run

Wanting to find solace in some classics, after my previous read of Fountainhead, I took up "The Catcher in the Rye" by J.D Salinger. I knew I made a big mistake this time.

The first person narration of Holden Claufield, expressing his teenage angst on anything and everything could get you nothing but headache. The whole story is about the 3-4 days of the so-called-vacation that Holden takes(doing whatever he likes) when he is expelled from school, before packing home. The ways of Holden(a poor role model) and his illogical and flimsy decisions taken throughout, and his disrespect for elders(Including his parents) doesn't resemble anything close to that of an average matured, teenage guys of today. Combining this with all the bad habits(highly deplorable for his age) that Holden has, there is no take away from this book. The first person narrative makes it even more gloomier and depressing.

It is no wonder, that it is one of the controversial and most censured books of the 50's to 80's. Somehow this book became popular, though I could not attribute anything to speak of. Anyone in his right sense of mind wouldn't want to find himself synonymous with the despicable character of Holden Claufield.

Hats off to my school and college syllabus framers for making me to study Shakespeare, O Henry, Dickens etc and not this book which is still being taught in High schools, esp in English speaking countries!!! Any takers on whether it is going to be a Hat-Trick read of boring books?? This is one feat, that I surely don't want to achieve.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Learning to Say "No"

I am Mr.Nobody to be a critic of Ayn Rand's "The FountainHead", but what follows is just a rant that crossed my mind when I started reading it, which eventually lead me to return back without finishing it.

The character of Howard Roark (Protagonist) (the guy who never bends, just for the sake of "what-would-the-society-tell") is obnoxious. In real life, this protagonist would end up only as a failure(From the society's perspective, but in his mind, he would continue to be a winner, what is the use of this puffed up EGO, I don't understand).

Next irritating character is Dominique Francon, characterized as an intellectual sure-shot head-turner, who marries almost all the characters in the novel except for Toohey(because he is old??) and Guy Francon(because he is her father, Ayn Rand could have tried that too, that's revolutionary isn't??) just to punish her, because she lives in a society where people doesn't recognize true-raw-creativity(good reason eh?? This shit is much worser than I-came-late-cos-of-cycle-tyre-puncture reason I used to give in school). I don't understand her ideology-crap of marrying Keating, simultaneously having a relationship with Howard Roark and also planning for the downfall of Howard by destroying his reputation. (Psssst!! She eventually marries Howard Roark!!! after divorcing Keating and marrying Gail Wynand and then divorcing... I remember only these people names) Ayn Rand describes Dominique as "the woman for a man like Howard Roark." (Good, that she doesn't describe her as the woman for every Man)

As I could not take this **** any longer I gave back the book at the library deciding not to venture out any further, into any of her works. obviously, it is not for ME!!! Now started reading J.D.Salinger's "Catcher in the Rye" which better not dwell along the same lines.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Munnar Trip

After quite a long time, it was a trip that was planned along with my parents.The hot climate enroute to Munnar raised questions regarding the climate in Munnar, but as we approached the destination, It was evident that we are going to have some extraordinary experience. We took the long route from Trichy -> Theni -> Cumbum -> Kumily -> Munnar just to get the permit for the vehicle else we could have took the diversion after Theni and reached Munnar through Poopara skipping Cumbum and Kumily. Taking some quick snaps at the Anaiyirangal (Translated to Elephant passing area) Dam Waters we moved on. At Devikulam, We came to know that the sita devi lake is out of bounds as it lies within TATA Tea Estate and needs special permission :( But we could see the sprawling Devikulam Tea Estate extending even beyond the horizon.

As we passed the Lock Heart Gap, we had in-the-midst-of-clouds experience. The valley below could not be seen as waves of wispy clouds have conquered the valley below and was hitting upon the mountain one after the another. Though it was mid-afternoon, the area was pitch dark (figure of speech, please excuse!!) because of this. As we crossed the Lock Heart Gap, the other side of the mountain was filled with sunshine(quite a converse from the other side) On reaching we checked in @ Elysium Gardens, a nice place to laze your bones. That night after having the complimentary dinner @ the hotel, I had a nice little walk which ensured that my bones are frozen to the deep.

Next day, our first destination was Top-Station a excellent viewpoint in Tamil Nadu (34 KM from Munnar) while returning back, we got down at various places like Yellapatty Tea Estate, Kundale Dam, Echo Point and Mattupatty Dam. The route to Top-station from Munnar is spilled with many places to visit. Apart from this, the lush Green Tea Estates would follow you through the whole path except for the last 5 KM which is inside the reserve forest. If not it is the Tea Estate, it would be the lush green grass on the mountain slopes that would grasp your attention.

That afternoon, after lunch we went to Eravikulam National Park and boarded on the Park's Vehicle for a trip to the Rajamalley's(King Mountain) summit. The ascent was terrific, and as we gained height the clouds came back and once on the top, the scenic beauty is beyond compare. We had to walk for another 1KM to gather more altitude. The mountain slopes were filled with Lush yellow tinted grass and NeelaKurinji(blue kurinji, a plant which blooms only once every 12 years. The next bloom is on sept 2018) It is here we sited the hordes of Nilgiri Tahr lazing and grazing the grass on the mountain slopes.We had som terrific encounter with clouds once again and we walked back to the pick-up point. Before boading the Vehicle, paid a visit to the Park's Museum(Story of the Park) which had fossils and many photos of the slopes of the Rajamalley when Kurinji was in Full Bloom and some photos of the flora and fauna that could be found there. Some deep inside the reserve forest pics caught my attention.While returning to the base camp, we were shown the Majestic Anaimudi Peak(tallest peak in south india @ 2695 m)

We retired for the day, and the day next we started covering the sevenmalley estate and pothemedu viewpoint. Then we moved to cochin and from there to guruvayoor for the night stay. Munnar's beauty lies in the extending sea of tea garden and the cool climate. Visit my Pics @

There are many places to visit and this link gives a good idea A small extract of that here for my future reference .

The places in and around are basically divided in four roads or directions :
1) Mattupetty : In this direction you have these places to visit
a) Photo Point : Good places to take snaps in the tea garden (4 km)
b) Mattupetty Dam (11 km)
c) Indo-Swiss Project : This place is a must visit (13 km)
d) Shooting Point : Place where many south Indian movies have been shorted (14 km)
e) Echo Point (17 km)
f) Elephant Arrival Spot (20 km)
g) Kundale Lake : Don’t miss the Boat ride here :) (25 km)
i) Kundale Golf Course (28 km)
j) Top Station (about 6300 ft above the sea level) : This is in the border of Kerala and tamil nadu,there is a way to Kodai from this palce. We need to walk down for about a 1 km to reach this stop from the road, it is a terrific sight, and you can also see the world?s highest tea plant from this place. (32 km)

2) Coimbatore : In this direction you have these places to visit
a) Anaimudi, Highest Peak in South India (about 8853 ft above the sea level,20 km)
b) Nyamakad Waterfalls : Samll but a beautiful falls (8 km)
c) Eravikulam National Park : You get great view of munar from this national park, one has to walk about 1.5 km and you will also find a rare and endangered wild goat which can walk on mountains, we were privileged that we could see them (13 km)
d) Lakkam Falls (26 km)
e) Sandal Wood Forest : This drive is just too good (35 km)
f) Childrens Park (43 km)
g) Wildlife Sanctuary (Chinnar) : You can also go trekking here to a falls which is flows through the jungle , the falls is about 8 kms from the road.Pls take care not to honk or make noise when going through the forest since there are good chances you may miss out some wild life (63 km)
h) Amaravathy Dam (78 km)
i) Crocodile Dam: You can find crocodiles at different ages here , entry fee is 50p per head (can u believe this) ;) (79 km)

3) Cochin : In this direction you have these places to visit
a) Blossom Park (2.5 km)
b) Pothemedu View Point : A beautiful view spot for Sunset, there are couple of resorts near by this view point,you can also see coffee and cardamom plantations here. (5 km)
c) Attukkadu Water Falls (10 km)

4) Thekkady : In this direction you have these places to visit
a) Sita Devi Lake : Cannot miss this beautiful lake and scape (22 km)
b) Lock Heart Gap View : Should I explain this view ;) (14 km)
c) Power House Water Falls (17 km)
d) Resorts Village View (18 km)
e) Anaiyirankal Dam View (18 km)

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Malpe Trip

After some 250 conflicting emails sent across for the preparation of the trip, finally it was decided that we are making a move on 13th March for a Dakshin-Coastal-Karnataka Trip. The Tempo Traveller was fully packed, and the people you chipped in were myself, senthil, subbi, musi, shyama shastri :) , Prakash (Prabhu, Rajesh, DP, Pramod) annas, sai & nachi. Rajesh and Subbi made it for the trip at the last minute.And so we started for Belur by 12:00 AM.

We were planning to reach Udupi through Bangalore -> Belur -> Mudigere -> Kalasa -> Karkala -> Udupi. Our driver drove through the Kudremukh sanctuary in the kalasa -> Karkala stretch in the wee hours and it was a blessing in disguise. The Samse Tea estate was fully covered in early morning mist. As we moved through the Kudremukh Sanctuary, a wallpaper like scenary took our breadth away!!! The slopes of the Kudremukha(Horse-face) mountain was fully covered in heavy fog and the day before rain that had drenched the slopes made it a sight of a lifetime.The whole-night-wide-awake-syndrome combined with the topsy-turvy curves from Mudigere already made us feel dizzy and thus we couldn't look outside any further the fog covered mountain stream flowing under the bridge and the mist covered town of Kudremukh. Cursing the bad-shape we were in, we finally reached Udupi by 9:00AM

Getting ready, we headed towards the Malpe Harbour to take a ferry to the St.Mary's Islands, a virgin Columnar basaltic Island in the midst of the ocean. Changing two boats enroute to the Island(Bigger one to a smaller one as the water would be shallow) we reached it atlast. The awe-invoking grand Columnar volcanic rocks, Crystal clear Greenish water, steep beach filled not with sand but with sea shells, greenish grass filled landscape interspersed with coconut trees makes St.Mary's Island a lonely-Treasure-Island effect & a dream destination to visit. We had a nice bath in the rough beach of the Island and after a round of clicks we headed back to the harbour in the next boat that visited the Island. The Irony associated with the title of this blog post is though Malpe was our main place to visit after St.Mary's Island, we avoided visiting that, as we were running out of time for lunch and the next place to visit.

After lunch, we went to Maravanthe Beach, a renowned sun-kissed beach where the beach on one side, sauparnika river running parallely to the NH17 on the other side makes it a wonder-struck sight. the only stretch of land is the NH17 and the rest is water on all the sides. We played Football till sunset and then paid a visit to anegudde Vinayagar temple. That night we had our dinner at Mitra samaj and finished the day off with a round of playing cards.

Next day, we set off to the Udupi Krishna Temple, and worshipped the deity through the window panes from the backside of the temple(The reason why the deity faces the backside of the temple is beyond the scope of this blog). Gobbling up buns, idlies and vadas at Mitra samaj, we steered towards the desolate Kaup beach. The lighthouse out there is open only from 4:00 to 6:00 hence we missed the terrific view from the top. But we played the game of the lifetime, beach volleyball as the waves splashed over us. From there, our plan was to reach Kodachadri before evening, but due to the fear of night driving in the Ghat section, we took the diversion to Bangalore when Kodachadri was just 14 Kms. Atleast we left this for a future trip. Enroute to bangalore, we got down at Thirthahalli to get a nice view of the Tunga river which flows through the town.

Photos at

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


The Pixar guys never fail to amaze in any of their releases and this time its not just with their animation prowness but with a touching and gripping storyline. I didn't feel a bit of sleep coming in when I saw this one from 1:30AM to 3:15AM yesterday night. Wall.E is an animated full length film, revolving around the protagonist Wall.E [Waste Allocation Load Lifter Earth-Class] the last robot[this character carves a niche that many real life actors fail to] that was left without powering off when humans left the Earth. The story is projected to take place some 800 years into the future when the earth is no longer habited and humans have migrated to a highly sophisticated fully automated spacecraft Axiom.

Wall.E's daily chores brings in a sympathy for the ever working Robo. The she-protagonist of the film Eve[Extraterrestrial Vegetation Evaluator] arrives in style and Wall.E falls head over heels for her. When the first sign of vegetation in the form of a plant is found, Eve takes that back to Axiom's captain. Wall.E dutifully follows her and how they overcome the ship's Main Robo's devious plan of destroying the plant and preventing the humans from migrating back to Earth to recolonize is the remaining story.

If the emotional ending of Wall.E touches the heart, the film's credit showing the dedication of the film in the loving memory of Justin Wright and the real story of Justin Wright brings one to tears. It is a pity that a film like this managed to bag just an Oscar, while a not so appealing many others bagged a lot(I have nothing against Slumdog Millionaire, But I feel(Which I am entitled to) Wall.E deserved a much better appreciation than what it was showered upon). The storyline delineates the state of affairs we would be in if we do not put an end to the excess of garbage that we are throwing out.Way to go Pixar!!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Coorg Trip

Never expected a day before the trip that I would be packing myself to Coorg, such was the pace of our decision. This time we hired a Qualis @ Rs6/KM and the inmates were Myself, Shyam, Yuva, Bharathi, Subbi & Sridhar. This time people came to my house and we started by 12 Midnight. As we hit the mysore road, the driver started showing his weariness and slowly we reached mandya and parked ourselves in one of the CCD in the Mysore road.We had a great time out there sipping coffee(2:30AM) and trying out photography @ slow shutter speeds(took pics of the traffic) By 3:00 we started again, and moved towards srirangapatna, and from there through the deserted route to Medikeri(Coorg). By 6:15 the cold breeze could be felt and the desolate old buildings of Medikeri could be seen. We rented an apartment in the first floor of an furnished building for 1500(we could have bargained a bit).

Once we got ready, we headed towards ThalaCauvery a 35Km drive from our place.The climate was bit hot and the dry vegetation along the roadside indicated that we had infact come during the wrong time of the year. The green lush vegetation wetted by the evening drizzle, the mist covered valleys were the hyped things to experience in Coorg and we knew this time we aren't going to see any of them.Thalacauvery is considered to be the origin of the river cauvery, It is a 2x2 well like structure and a small pond nearby. If you are expecting to see the R.Cauvery grow in stature from a trickle to a torrent, you would be disappointed. It is believed that only from this point in the bramhagiri hill cauvery starts and travels underground to come out of the kodagu valley in the western ghats as a mighty river(the first dam across it is harangi dam in coorg). The breath-taking views from the summit of the Brahmagiri hill is hard for anyone to forget easily. From there we started to Abbey falls. This falls lies within a private property(first time I am hearing something like this.) We were lucky enough to see a good amount of water on it. Bathing is banned on the falls and a bridge across the falls was a good viewpoint kind of. Pit-stop-3 was Gadduge, three tombs of the kings. interesting aspect of these structures were they had adopted islamic architecture interspered with Hindu figurines like Nandi. To see the sunset, we reached the Raja's Seat a park cum viewpoint. We made a light descent from this place to reach a much secluded place to view the sunset. The path was filled with hip high brownish weeds, and this turned out to a good place to take some really good pictures as the descenting sun rays were adding a golden tint to the whole landscape.This was followed by a Light & water Fountain dance show arranged by the park authorities.It was around 7PM and we got some food parcelled and I bought 1KG of Coffee Powder(Half kg with chicory cost 70 and another brand half KG pure coffee cost 100) We slept like logs that night.

Next day, we vacated the house and paid a visit to Omkareshwar Temple. This temple architecture too resembled islamic style. we started heading towards Dubare Elephant camp on the banks of R.Cauvery. We crossed the river on our own by walking across the rocks protruding here and there instead of using the boats.The path turned out to be scenic and our walk the more exciting. Once across, we saw the horde of elephants eating, bathing and some were building some keep of wood. One baby elephant was having lot of fun running here and there butting people. After having our breakfast there @ Dubare Inn, we started towards Nisargadhama, an island midst of the R.Cauvery.We lazed ourselves in a boat for some time and then explored the Bamboo covered Island. We walked almost to the end of the Island, but missed walking along the rim of the island to make a circum tour. Taking some pics we hurried to the next stop in our path, Namdroling Monastery. The Tibetan settlement in Bylakoppe have built some amazing Tibetan style structures here. Once you enter the place, It would be hard to believe that you are in South India. The whole place has been neatly maintained and interspersed with many Tibetan Monasteries of varying shapes, colours and sizes. The mighty monasteries with many statues of Buddha and his incarnations amazes one.The vivid colours in the exquisite paintings on the walls captivates even the dull non-patroniser of art. I missed the Veg.Momo but ate Veg. Tukpa at the Tibetan restaurant out there.

From there we started heading home, and we reached our house by 11:00. Whew!!! it was one good unplanned-yet-a-satisfying-"Covered-all" Trip. Visit the Pictures @

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Yelagiri Trek

If you have assumed Yelagiri, to be an extraordinary getaway with many scenic spots and places to cover, you got to think again. During many travels, the common hills and mountains fills the backdrop by the side, I have always wondered, if anyone had ever scaled those so-familiar yet so-ambiguous mountains. The answer came along and I saw myself scaling one of those last weekend,Yeah its Yelagiri for you.

The day dawned and we(Myself,(Muthu + DP)anna,senthil,sai,nachi) were on the lalbagh express standing in the unreserved compartment heading towards jolarpet. The DP anna's desparate attempts to sit on the floor & the hue and cry raised by one of the fellow passenger kept us rolling on the floor laughing throughout the journey. Getting down at jolarpet, we were joined by Rajaguru anna and from there we caught a bus to Yelagiri. The 14 hairpin bents and our driver's driving stunts made the just-eaten-idlies @ Jolarpet move up-&-down the gut. Once there we made our way to the lake and went for a boat ride. We then started our trek to Jalagampaarai falls. If there are two things that bogs down a trekker, its the heat and the weight of the bags. The head-above-noon-sun saw to it that we were scorched by the heat throughout the trip and the tents, sleeping bags & MTR instant cook recipies added the weight in our bags.

We were joined by a local village folk by the name Raman who guided us through the mountain. With the hurrying guide(he has to catch a bus back to yelagiri from jalagampaarai in another 4 hours) on the lead, and the fear of facing a bear enroute kept us on the heals most of the time. We moved through the valley and rise, stopping only a little to refresh then and there. The heat and the mostly dry vegetation (during this season) didn't attract many clicks from my camera. By the time we had covered 3/4 of the trail, we sat by the side a dwindled stream under a tree and had some bread and jam.From there it was mainly a descent down the mountain it was kind of easy to cover. The 4 hours of sweating from morning atlast got some solace on seeing the Vimaanam of the Jalagampaarai temple.Finally we reached the spot we had marked as our destination.After taking rest we climbed the steps to reach the falls.The falls didn't have any water except for the trickle oozing through that seem to say "ONE-AT-A-TIME-PLEASE". The trickle didn't deter us from taking bath in the falls.

The Temple of jalagampaarai had only one or two paying a visit and was largely isolated except for a tea shop catering for the 1/2 pilgrims coming in.Even they pack up and move out by the evening.Getting their advise on the location, we setup the two tents on the clearing in the midst of the forest cover. we collected some firewood and water and set up the rocks around for cooking. Once the fire boiled the water, we placed the MTR Instant Pongal,Sambar Rice,Rasam Rice,Tomato Rice packets and heated them. we had a hearty meal together under thr blanket of the bright twinkling stars and then went to the tent pretty soon. The eerie darkness,russle of the forest leaves followed by the dogs bark brought in a sense of insecurity.Though we were surrounded by the tent, it didn't extinguish the fear of wild animals like the bear.The day dawned and we got ourselves ready and paid a visit to the temple. We finished off the breakfast of kara paniyaaram with kaara chutney ordered by us in the tea shop. Very soon we hopped ourselves on the bus to Thirupattur and from there to krishnagiri -> Bangalore.

The Trek in all was exciting. especially our first time experience in setting up tents, cooking with firewood etc. The adventurous night sleep in fear turned out to be a false alarm, and it came to light as we travelled by bus to thirupattur. The bus took a right turn round a bend and we saw human inhabitations through-out. We had in-fact camped on the plains.The surrounding eerie dark forests turned out to be animal free forest cover followed by paddy fields.

Visit for photos

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Nilgiris Trip

DAY 0:
During the christmas holidays, I had planned for a trip to Nilgiris(Ooty) with my school friends, and stuck to the note.On the eve of christmas, myself, Bharathi & siva boarded the coimbatore train.After the rendezvous with Priyan, Mani, Hari, Dhinesh, Prakash, Pradeep @ the coimbatore railway station, we boarded the so called last bus to mettupalayam according to dhinesh to end our dinner in a hurry :) We reached mettupalayam in an hour (12:15) and booked ourselves at kaveri international for the night(300 per room). Next Morning by 5:30 my good ol' pals came up with the crashing news that the Nilgiri mountain rail is fully booked.

DAY 1:
We boarded the bus to coonoor(breath taking valleys and fog filled mountains could be sighted in this route) and in another hour we were in coonoor freezing from head to toe.From coonoor, we got tickets(Rs 4/per person [dead cheap])in one of the 5 Nilgiri mountain rail operating between coonoor to ooty. By 7 the train started chugging through the Ghats revealing the Tea estates then and there.On reaching Ooty we checked in @ a so called cottage(infact it was a apartment) in the Davis Dale street(2 bedroom flat for 1400 per day accomadating 9 ppl).Snazing the breakfast @ Thendral restaurant near A.P.C junction, we (myself, bharathi, Priyan) started off (through Ettines Road) to District Forest Officer(south region) in wenlocks road(munching fresh carrots) to obtain permission for sight seeing Avalanche - a restricted forest area. We should have met the Wild Life Warden first to get a good Idea of trekking spots and later the Nilgiri WildLife Association for trekking permission and jungle rest house booking. But we obtained the permission from DFO(south) by evening without knowing exactly what is there in that place.BTW, the tourist officer in wenlocks road was very helpful and gave us a map of the Places to visit in and around ooty.(I would try to scan and put it here)The bitingly cold climate in the evening made us to hop into Cafe Coffee Day opposite to wenlocks road.Finishing off our dinner @ saravanaas Restaurant we headed to our cottage.That night the temperature touched 2 degree Celsius.

DAY 2:
Next day, We hired a Jeep(Driver : Ramakrishnan, cell: 9487073352) to avalanche @ Rs800.Once there at avalanche, we came to know that due to scanty rainfall, the catchment area was kind of dry. Crossing the checkpost, we went to the Power Station up there. We couldn't go up further to the most talked about upper bhavani catchment area as we hadn't obtained permission for that.We spent some time trekking to the fresh water tunnel coming from the Upper Bhavani and then to the banks of the avalanche catchment.It was a breath taking view of the water body and the dense shola on the sides.Returning back we got down in the ooty lake and walked along the road bordering it.Then myself and Bharathi reached Botanical Garden by evening and explored that too before darkness crept over.Retreating back through Charring cross we reached commercial road to make a rendezvous with others for dinner.We ended that day by playing cards till midnight.

DAY 3:
Being a sitting duck for the cold the last 2 days in the cottage, we moved to Hotel TamilNadu-II (Youth Hostel).It comprised a large room with 8 separate beds + other amenities. Truely we raised our eyebrows on seeing the neat and tidy room which we had not expected in a government run hotel, that too all this for Rs 1125.In fact, Hotel TamilNadu-I(in wenlocks road) offers a scenic stay for 2-4 ppl.since we are a group of 9 ppl, we were accomadated at Extn-II. Leaving behind our bags we started to Pykara on the same Jeep. Enroute we stopped at the Pine Forest to take some snaps and proceeded on to 9th Mile, a shooting spot that no director leaves in his film.We spent most of the time here trying to take on the air pics :) Then we proceeded to the Pykara Lake. Since the 10 seater boat was scheduled to make 2 trips ahead of our turn, we backed off and went to pykara waterfalls.Since the water had dwindled to a trikkle, we walked through the stony riverbed for some time.We tried to make it to the doddabetta view point before 5:30, only to know that the view point closes by 5:00 :( We went to the Tea Factory while driving down to see the Tea making process. Nice management technique indeed, not one stepped outside without buying tea powder packets, and we were no exceptions.That being our last day in ooty, we walked through the commercial road, charring cross till our legs ached, had dinner and came back.That night we played cards till 2 and after that the priyan trio saw to it that no one slept that night.From 5:30 next morning, I took up the job of driving people mad by trashing them with pillows.

Packing our stuffs quickly, we had our breakfast and did some shopping in charring cross(Note: best place to buy home-made chocolates,Eucalyptus oil,Tea powder,ooty varkee & rusk is either charring cross or commercial road) Enroute to the bus-stand Myself and Bharathi got some really fresh Nilgiri Carrots & ooty fresh vegetables home.

Points to Ponder:
* The early morning walk to the elk hill planned by me and Bharathi to see the mist never happened due to fear of venturing out in the damn COLD weather.

* Though the trip to Nilgiris was exciting, especially with good old school friends I couldn't put a tick mark above nilgiris in the Map as we didn't visit Parsons Valley, Porthimund, Mukurthi peak & national park, Western Catchment & Upper Bhavani (all under reserved forest area). Sometime down the lane, I am determined to obtain permission and stay in some jungle resthouse within these area and visit them. Only then Nilgiris would come under visited places list.

* One Important outcome of this trip is, I won the FEL Vacation Photography contest 2009 with this snap :)
Visit the Photo Gallery @

Friday, January 09, 2009

FEL Vacation Photography Contest 2009 - Poster

After the 16 days vacation, I am back at the office and the very first work I did was designing this poster for the photography contest. It took me some time in arranging the collage(on the top) and then it was as easy as butter.

I have also sent in my entries. With my fingers crossed I am waiting....

Update: Hurray!!! I won this competition with the following photograph taken in Nilgiris