Thursday, January 30, 2014

Pappettan on waking up early

If you are wondering who Pappettan is, click on this link and find out.

If you listen to the experts, then 8 hours of sleep is a must. Of late, I am taking these experts seriously. As a result, I go to bed early. Yet, I am not having a 8 hours of peaceful sleep. My sleep is disturbed. I wake up every 3 hours even though my alarm is set at 5:30 in the morning. I have woken up many nights thinking it is time to get up only to realize that I have been duped by my own mind.

After such a strange night where I experienced an interrupted sleep, I decided to bring up this matter with Pappettan.

Me: I get up in the middle of the night for no reasons.

Pappettan:*unperturbed* You should calm your mind and instruct it to get up at the time when you have to really wake up.

Me: *surprised* What?

Pappettan: *calmly* Before going to bed, you should tell your mind you are only going to wake up at the time you want to wake up. So you tell yourself, you will be wake up at 6 am in the morning or something like that.

Me: *trying to figure out the wisdom*

After a lot of thought, I decided to try this piece of advice. Before going to bed that night, I told myself I am to wake up at 5 am in the morning. The next day, I went to Pappettan to discuss the results.

Me: I tried  your advice. I told myself I will wake up at 5 am.

Pappettan: *smiles*

Me: But there was a problem. I woke up at 5:30 am when the alarm went off. I had a good sleep with no interruptions. But I got up 5:30 am instead of 5 am. *concealing my smile and so sure I have trapped Pappettan this time*

Pappettan: That is okay.

Me: *agitated at his cool composure* Why is it okay?

Pappettan: It must have been 5 am somewhere in the world.



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Monday, January 27, 2014

Sometime, it is better to let go...

Don't we all cling on to things even though we can do nothing about it? It is hard for us to get up and move on. Recently, I was part of a conversation which is a shining example for moving on. The conversation was centered around one of the basic and important necessities of life. Food.

One late night, we ordered food from the nearby readily-available and quick-to-deliver options for food. In such a case, there aren't many options other than pizza. Ordering is the easy part if the group has reached a consensus. There are vegetarians in the group and non-vegetarians in the group. The food when delivered is clearly marked as vegetarian and non-vegetarian on the boxes.

As soon as the pizzas arrived, we dug our fingers into the boxes as soon as the boxes were segregated. When some of us had the first bite into the first warm slice of pizza, someone raised a concern. The boxes weren't marked correctly for vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. As a non-vegetarian, it hardly matters for me. At the same time, I was sitting across another vegetarian who was busy eating. I stopped and watched him curious to see how this is going to play out.

The person, who was sitting opposite me, continued to eat the pizza. When he saw me looking at him, he shrugged. "There isn't much I can do now. I might as well enjoy the pizza. I will try to be careful next time!". That was his response. To be frank, it is a far better response than spitting the food, running into the washroom...

Tags: Musings,Pizza,Vegetarian

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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Men and their underwear

Men have a strange relationship with their underwear. If you are woman, I urge you to wait till I am done with this piece. If you are a man, do you agree with me? If you don't, I have a simple question for you. Why do you end up sleeping in the couch or floor in your underwear when you are inebriated? I'am not peeking into your bedroom. Ironically, it is the women who brings up this subject.

Before leaving Paris, I have been out in the city, the city of light for everyone and city of conversation in cafes/bars for me, with the my friends many times. In fact, one occasion was when two of my young friends invited me for dinner with their girlfriends. One of the girls was meeting me for the first time even though I have been friends her boyfriend for two years. To my amusement, she recounted the story when she came to know we were all good friends. That was the night when she knew all three of us were going out on a boy's night. In the middle of the night she got up from bed and walked to the living room as she could not find her boyfriend in bed. Worried that her boyfriend had not reached home, she walked into the living room in the slim hope she could find some clues there. Instead of clues, she found him there on the couch in his underwear and sleeping like a baby. When she described it, her eyes shown with the pleasure of seeing him sleep peacefully.

Of course, all my friends have a good time when they are with me. I take pride in it. But the underwear thing was interesting. It became more interesting two weeks later when underwear turned up in another conversation. Another young friend of mine and also colleague turned up at work slightly hung over on too many drinks from the previous night. Don't blame for me too many drinks. There was a small party at work followed up two other parties. One of the parties was a corporate event which all of us had gatecrashed. In my defense, I didn't instigate gatecrashing.  I only encouraged it. So my friend turns up the next day and confesses he had too many drinks the previous night. His wife was a bit upset in the morning when she found him sleeping in the couch. Yes, you guessed it right. When she found him sleeping in the couch in his underwear. She felt he wouldn't have done this if he hadn't consumed too much alcohol.

Like I said, men have a strange relationship with their underwear!

Tags: Musings,Young Friend,Men,Underwear,Alcohol

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Sunday, January 5, 2014

Photos: Waiting for the fireworks

On New Year's Eve, I was trapped in Victoria Embankment opposite the London Eye. There was not an inch to move because of the crowd gathered to watch the fireworks. Although I was initially disappointed fearing I will not be able to take pictures, I finally decided to take pictures of the people. Here is one taken of someone waiting for the fireworks.


Picture Courtesy: http://www.facebook.com/photokkaran
Please visit the page of Photokkaran. Don't forget to "Like" the page if you enjoy the pictures.

Tags: Photos

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Saturday, January 4, 2014

A father gets his son into trouble

When a son grows up to be a man, a father gets anxious and worried about many things. In fact, a father does this part all his life and during all phases of a son's life. But have you heard about a father causing trouble for a son after the latter has grown up to be a man? My young friend has landed in trouble because of his dad. 

When my young friend was growing up, his dad was a role model. He was back home as soon as his work got over. His father did a lot of penny pinching to see two kids through school and college. When my young friend landed up in a well paid job after graduation, the trouble started. As part of the job, my young friend had to relocate to another city. A few days after he moved out of him home town, his friends started calling him on the phone complaining about my friend's dad. They are unable to go to any local pub because of my friend's dad. Whenever they visit a local pub, they find his dad and his friend having a drink. Out of respect, these friends of my friend stealthily move out and find another pub to quench their thirst. This has reached to a point where these friends send out a scout on an reconnaissance mission in order to identify a safe pub. Nobody likes planning. These guys have to plan their pub visits now.

My friend's dad has a different line of reasoning. He has worked hard to provide for his family. Now his kids are well settled. It is time to catch up on lost time. He has never done this in his life. Now he has reached a point where he can safely do all these and enjoy it.

Tags: Musings,Young Friend,Father

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Friday, January 3, 2014

Photos: Shooting the Eye

The fireworks in front of the London Eye on the New Year's Eve lasted 12 minutes. Just when the countdown started from 10, a lot of hands went up. The hands were holding mobile phones in order to capture the fireworks. When there is a huge crowd, like that night, it is difficult to get a good shot. Moreover, if you need to capture the fireworks, you need a cable release. Even with a cable release, it is a learning experience. So I chose to watch the fireworks.

Now how did I know the fireworks lasted 12 minutes. No, I didn't read it on the newspapers next day. Nor do I possess an advanced sense of time. I say it lasted 12 minutes because I was glancing at the mobile that was clearly partially blocking my line of vision. The recording went on for 12 minutes. I saw the man step in front me and raise his camera to shoot as soon as the countdown started. It was an odd sight for me since the man was standing right behind me for over an hour without moving. He was alone and with warnings about snatchers, you can never be too careful.

I was eyeing him with suspicion till the countdown. When the countdown started, he started recording excitedly. Judging by his excitement, I guess it is being recorded for people who don't have a chance to see it. It might be for someone back at home, wherever his home is. Isn't it weird? We all want to shoot pictures without any one of us in the frame even though better pictures are available on the internet for everyone to view!

While you think about this, I share the picture of someone shooting the eye before the fireworks. This person in the picture is not the person I was referring to.



Picture Courtesy: http://www.facebook.com/photokkaran
Please visit the page of Photokkaran. Don't forget to "Like" the page if you enjoy the pictures.

Tags: Photos

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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Equality is here!

A new year has begun. While most of us looks at a new year like a new start with full of vigor and new promises to ourselves, I only look at how the new year started. I am glad the new year kicked off without any untoward events. I can safely say so because I didn't sleep through the countdown. Nor was my iPhone snatched from me. Nor did I have to wait in the rain for 2 hours for a taxi. It was a non-event. The good thing about this year was the London fireworks. The fireworks set against the London Eye. Sometimes, it was like London Eye was shooting fireworks over River Thames. As for me, it is a location change combined with fireworks on the New Year's Eve. Paris prefers to have the fireworks on their Bastille Day and has relatively meek New Year's Eve. 

Getting near the London Eye on a New Year's Eve is a more daunting task. Though the road on the opposite bank is cordoned off to prevent vehicles, the people who pour in from the city, it's outskirts, other parts of the country and also other parts of the world make it impossible to navigate to a suitable vantage point. Despite all this, imagine yourself finding a place with Big Ben to your back and London Eye to your front. It is a special place because you can look at Big Ben for the countdown. When the countdown is done, you turn to look at the London eye for the fireworks. The world's famous clock is your timekeeper.

There are still other things to be glad about. There are no checks for alcohol when you get off Westminster station to the Victoria Embankment. So you can carry your favorite brand of potion in your bag without any worries. Imagine Paris. There is no way to get into Champ de Mars without the cops making you pull all your items out of bags and confiscating liquor bottles if they find any. Yet people manage to smuggle liquor bottles in. This is another matter. In London, there is not enough space to move thanks to the crowd it pulls in. You are pushed in the direction where the strong is moving which means forward or backward depending on your luck. The experienced come with folding chairs to ensure their legs aren't too tired. The whole place filled up by 7:30 pm. So you can imagine the need for a place to sit down. If you don't get here before 9 pm, you better go somewhere else.

The funniest sight is yet another one. This is a common sight all around the world when a large crowd convenes for something special as this day. It is the queue in front of makeshift so-called high-tech toilets. After consuming your favorite band of potion - alcoholic and non-alcoholic - accompanies by low temperature of the day, it is natural your bladders are overworked and are begging for a relief. When you hit the urinals located near the Westminster Abbey, there is a long line of people who are experiencing pressure on their bladders. Incidentally, this is also where the true equality of sex is achieved. Men and woman are straddling on their feet waiting for their turn. Some are even hopping from one feet to another. There is absolute silence. There are law breakers who do not care for the rules of the queue. But nobody has the energy to protest. Men and women take part in this misery equally. 

Tags: Musings,New Year's Eve,London

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