October 30, 2013

My attempt at poetry for my little one's first b'day

There were some hard times,
And some were even bad…
But as the most precious gift
He dawned before us one night
Changing our lives,
with his giggles and cute smiles…
He brought so much joy,
which mere words can’t describe.
From rolling to crawling
and to taking few steps,
He is walking into the day,
Which will mark his first b’day!

January 17, 2010

One night at Nigdi Police Chowki!

As you all know, I am one carefree person. So a ‘noble’ that I was fondly called a ‘Maram’ by close friends. Maram, the Malayalam for tree, is slang for anyone who follows Newton’s first law of motion - Every object in a state of rest or uniform motion tends to remain in that state unless an external force is applied to it. For me, I just remain in the state even after the external force has been applied, which makes me a Van-Maram, the biggest of the trees! Ok, too much of explanation. To put it in simple words, I was very calm, quiet and ‘mind-my-own-business’ person and thus very vulnerable to cruel and mean world out there.

The story happens in the beautiful village of Nigdi, located on the Western Ghats, packed between the grand Pune city and charming Lonavala-Khandala ranges. Mr. Navi (nothing to do with Avatar Nav'is), infamous singer among our mallu friends got promotion at work and he was throwing a dinner party to share his excitement. Also, my big brother at work (big in all sense), was leaving our company with aspirations for a better opportunity. So we decided to dedicate our weekend in their joyful company and planned the party at GP (Golden Palms). Golden Palms has been one of our regular food place, be it a friendly hang out or a team lunch. This big restaurant located by the side of Mumbai-Pune highway has huge open sitting area, which made it ideal for dinner parties.

A small gang had gathered at GP by 8:00 pm on that Friday and I joined the group along with my friends Sam, Joby and Paul. With more people joining us, the scene warmed up pretty quickly. Big brother was all excited with our affection and with little help from his Scottish friend (who comes in a pretty bottle with not so pretty price tag) he swiftly got into his full form. The scenes that followed were quite 'soothing’ to both eyes and ears. As he reached the summit of his performance, he started unleashing his excellent vocab skills in almost all languages known to him and this time not just us but the bearers of the GP were also the targets. Very minute versions of these shows are common in GP and the bearers there have witnessed similar outbursts since IT doomed the Nigdi area and created a new creed of youngsters with thick wallets.

An elderly gentleman sitting near to our table didn’t seem to enjoy this show and made some remarks directly pointing towards us. This started a small brawl between us and the managers, and head waiters rushed to take control of the situation. But big bro was in no mood to take it lightly and started to push them away. That seemed like a needed trigger to turn the situation into a complete chaos. Bearers couldn’t find a better opportunity to unleash their frustration and big brother soon turned into a high quality punching bag – how much you kick and punch, it still remains steady! We tried our best to pull him out of the mess, but 4 of us were no match to his fury. We relived ‘Matrix-reloaded’ when we saw the bottles, tables, chairs and some bearers flying away – thanks to our big brother!

As an experienced mess-maker, big brother found his way out of the pandemonium in no time. We couldn’t leave so easily because we were the easy preys and had our collars secure in the hands of the head waiter. After all, they needed someone to pay for the mess! Left with no choice, we paid the expense and left the place. Outside the gate we were given a warm welcome by Nigdi police, who later took four of us to the police chowki. That elderly man, with whom our brother had messed earlier, was uncle to the site DYSP and he had immediately called DYSP for help.

In spite of being an Indian, I was never a great fan of cricket, I played it, watched it once a while and i.e. all about it! I never thought that cricket would be such a life saver. It was 2007 20-20 cricket world Cup final between India and Pakistan. All the officers in the chowki were so busy watching the live telecast that they completely ignored our existence. In other terms, they did get time to perform their routine exercises on us and that saved us from any physical damages. We were confined to a small cell and Sam, Joby and Paul were all tensed and were angry to find me peacefully sleeping near one corner. “How the hell can he sleep when he is in Police custody?” The night got out without any more dramas and in the morning we were welcomed by a wonderful news. It was a Saturday, and the coming Monday was some state holiday - the courts will be closed, which means we can’t get a bail for the next three days!! Damn!!! And they can’t keep us in the cell for long, so we will be transferred to Yerwada Central Jail!! Can things get any better? But we didn’t lose hope; we know Pune police very well and their weakness :-).

Mr. JJ – my friend’s Project Manager and the godfather of all mallus in our company had a commendable connection within the Mallu big shots of Pune and he was more than ready to help us out. He made some important phone calls, came to the station, had a chat with the officers; but still things were not moving ahead. After all it’s Pune, the cradle of corruption, and Pune Police - the glorified beggars. I am not exaggerating, I have my own reasons! Once in the RTO office, they asked for money as if it was for some processing charge and then gave me a receipt for that. Later I found out that receipt (it was in Marathi) was some donation coupon for some function which happened 2 years back!! Howz that? Even though illicit money, they need to keep track of it too, you know. Another instance- when my friend went to complain about a bike theft, he was taken to the side and told this – “This complain writing is a tiresome process, the writer doesn’t get much paid. And you know we are not paid as you (IT) guys, so please pay at least 1000 bucks to file a complaint!” My friend bargained the amount down to 500 bucks. In India, you are born with bargain skills, even if it’s your school mark sheet, you ask teacher for extra 2-3 marks! Just like that, it won’t hurt if you get it, right? ;-)

Bargaining reminds me of something else, whenever you are caught by the traffic police, before getting out of the vehicle, you clear you wallet and keep max 100-200 bucks in it. Because we have to open the wallet in front of them and they will ask more if they see more! But with the advent of debit cards, things changed. If they find out that you are an IT guy, the next thing would be (after taking your driving license) – “we will wait, you can go and get money from the ATM”!!

Coming back to the story – the officers finally yielded for 13,000 rupees. Not a bad bargain for 4 people huh? Anyway, we were allowed to leave the chowki without any further problems! That was one hell of a day – at least for my friends ;-). If you ask me, I would say they should have mosquito repellants in chowkis!!

March 06, 2008

...in memory of

....once came a note of concern....it was something like this...

This is what I feel like doing rt now…
I’m looking at a wall paper on my desktop
It’s a path… well trodden but solitary
Lush meadows cluttered with trees on one side
A deep abyss dark and brooding on the other

It’s a turn that I see before me.. I know not where it would take me
The path is lit by mellowed rays of setting sun..
I can almost feel the soothing light on my skin
There is a breeze and it carries with it something pleasant

I feel a wander lust…don’t wanna come back where I started
I love the feel of ground moving beneath my feet..
I feel alive , light , wanna soar up in the sky….
But still..still..i’m afraid to take the turn that I see before me
Coz I know not…what lies ahead..i know not…what is in store…

...then went the reply....something in somewhat similar note...

It’s not afraid dear, just rising anxiety…
Coz the turn u took sometime back, looks similar in shape and tone
You have to follow this road, as u see no other go...

Hold up your head and try to see beyond…
Above the lush meadows…and dark deep abyss
There are still rays…rays giving hopes
You saw it as a setting sun…but stop and look once more…
It’s the mighty rising sun…embracing u with a fresh new dawn

See the small shrubs and trees ahead….
Are they afraid, dull or concerned…
Taller they stand, greener they look…coz
They take the night…as break b/w dawns

So learn from them my dear…
Fly away ur fears…
Still more turns to come…
More and more churning to be done…

Keep up the lust...the spirits and the passion
Be light…alive and active…
Then only you can soar…soar up in the sky

...in the memory of some good old phase of my life...the time when i wrote long long mails...things that made difference in the irksome world of an IT guy.

February 09, 2008

Jab We Met

Neighbors envy, owner’s pride...I was so called more than lucky to get a chance to work for few months from the Sin City as a part of my project. But sin and flamboyant part of the city just fascinated me (...need to say, I'm mama's good boy) but could never suffice the void that I felt deep in heart being away from family and friends. Ultimately I found myself spending most of the time on net or TV. The Iranian house-owner was a live savior in disguise when he cracked his Dish TV receiver to get some Indian channel, not to mention the good old mallu channel - Asianet :-). Asianet had just launched their music channel Asianet plus and soon I could find myself watching A+ most of the time.

Out of the numerous programs, one that never got out of my main memory was Mist, mainly because of its nostalgic style and the bubbly anchor. It was not just that, the anchor kept reminding me of some familiar face, someone I know. It took few days to figure it out, and yes it was someone I had met once or twice, she was my best friend's room mate. To confuse you further, lets call my best friend EF and this mysterious girl EL. Crazy!!....Come onnn...just for the sake of it....

One fine day, I accidentally got her yahoo ID from one of my friends and added her to the friends list. Fortunately she was also online at that time and we were gleefully chatting in no time. Though not as lucky as me, she was located somewhere around the 5 hour (by road) vicinity of Sin City which put us in the same time zone. The first chat lasted for 5 hours coincidently, and we found a strange synergy and resonance in our thoughts and deeds. Our names, ideas, thoughts, dreams, the way we perceived the world, the way we were brought up, our parents, our experiences...man there were many bingos to list down. We talked about almost everything under the sun, from childhood times to college times, from personal secrets to international gossips, went back to Mahabaratas and Ramayanas to discuss and debate over our perceptions. So far so good and it didn’t take time for us to be the best buddies.

Things took a different route when she planned to make a Vegas trip...to see me or the Vegas; I leave it for your discretion. Keep your perverted mind chained, it was just a normal visit with two of her other friends and how better can it be if you get to see Vegas, with a free stay and expert guide to take you around. Those three days were my best days after coming to Vegas and it still remains.

It’s different to be close to a person through chat and mails and to be in person. Though we were 'known for years' friends through chat, we felt like complete strangers when met in person. It's like we unknowingly build an image from pieces of info we have and later when we meet them in person, we try to match them to the picture we have. Anyway it did take some time to rebuild the images and to match it to the real one. It's true that we didn't have flower showers from the heaven, or romantic background songs, but we did notice the missed heart beats when we were together. I was not naive and could understand the laws of attraction and didn't try to conceal it behind the 'special friend', 'special relation', 'extended friendship' nomenclatures. But definitely was not smart enough to differentiate whether it was yet another infatuation or something I really want in my life.

I always have my own reservations on infatuation...after all feelings become infatuation when things doesn't fall into place. What if things fall in place? Well, then it becomes a successful relation. So isn't infatuation a failed relationship? I am not sure, so to be on safer side it’s always better to give some space and time to your relations. But again time is a commitment, the more time you take, the more time you are in the relation and it means more commitment! Ok, now its time to take the advice from wise. Who else would be in a better position to comment than my parents? The paper was presented and there were debates, reconsiderations, rethinking, re-confirmations and finally the green signal.

It’s more than 1 year since we met and I am happily married to miss EL for 7 months now. I don't like to use to term married because, I haven't felt it so till now and nor does she. For me I shifted with a new room mate who is so caring and lovable that we share a special relation, the relation which gives me the freedom to be myself and which inspires me to re-invent the magic everyday in my life......the magic that happened Jab we Met.