Saturday, August 29, 2009

My 3D Experience

If you have not seen a 3D movie, like me, start with 'Final Destination'. It is out in the cinemas. They will charge you £10 instead of the usual £8, rates varying based on which cinema you choose, but it is worth those extra quids.

The movie stays with you long after you have finished watching. After the movie while you are coming down the escalators, you check if you are shoe laces are tied or not. While you wait for your friends to come outside the theatre, you think what is the probability of the lamp post falling on you. As you walk up the car park, you look around to ensure everything is as it should be. Everything from the movie stays with you unless you consciously decide to wipe it out of memory.

I enjoyed the thrill. I enjoyed the realisation that there is a non-zero probability of the world crashing like a deck of cards - may be due to a sudden earthquake, a strong hurricane or cyclone or any other man-made reasons. So why not live the life that we have to the fullest until it all comes to an end? Why not endeavour to make living meaningful, so that death finds a meaning on its own too?

In short, I highly recommended you to watch it if you have guts as I did get freaked out once in a while. Be a part of the freaky imagination of the director which gets freakier by the addition of the dimension. Watch it and enjoy the adrenaline rush throughout the time of the movie.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Love Nowadays & Life Partner

For those of you who have a big grin on your faces – sorry but I am not going to write about my take on love or marriage here! I am talking about the two Bollywood movies recently released – ‘Love Aajkal’ and ‘Life Partner’.

I enjoyed watching both the movies because they are those feel good romantic comedies (rom-coms) which Bollywood invariably churns out. Recipe of success I realise is to have no extravaganza, a couple of stars, some nice locations, good script with sensible comic. It’s said that Hindi cinema thrives on fooling the audience with its overdose of emotions – gone are Suraj Barjatiya days. Now Hindi cinema thrives on giving the audience with the right dose of comedy.

After a long day at work, who does not enjoy comedy, especially if comic is milked out of topics traditionally considered sensitive and emotional like love or marriage? And is it not true that there is no point in taking life too seriously, at the end of the day life is as complicated as you make it and as simple as you think it is. There is nothing better than trying to find a little humour in everything if this can lighten my brain which is heavier than the laptop I am currently typing on.

On a separate note, while trying to access an old airline’s miles account, I happened to open my yahoo email after years of seldom-use. Wonder why they still decided to keep me alive there. Lots of emails from various weird networking sites that I had registered during internet’s heydays had filled up my inbox. ‘Forgotten password’ for each of them and then ‘Delete account’. Some of them were – Wayn, Who-remembers-me, Names Database, Tagged, Yaari, Skoost, hi5 and some I can’t even recall while I am typing this post.

As Paulo Cohelo remarks in his book ‘The Zahir’ – ‘It is always important to know when something has reached its end. Closing circles, shutting doors, finishing chapters, it doesn’t matter what we call it; what matters is to leave in the past those moments in life that are over.’ And definitely days of stupid and senseless use of internet are long over for me...

But why?! Why do we have this tendency of getting serious in life all the time?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Tequila Shot

1. Slice a regularly sized lemon or lime into small pieces.
2. Fill a shot glass with tequila.
3. Sprinkle a small pinch of salt onto the skin between your thumb and forefinger.
4. Using the same hand that contains the salt, you must hold one slice of the lemon (or lime) with your thumb and index finger.
5. Quickly lick the salt, down the tequila, and bite the lemon (or lime).

She did all of the above last night. This was after a long day at office, to celebrate a piece of work that got signed off. A busy day at office and she did not get time to eat anything after lunch, she was skeptical before downing the tequila. She surprised herself by behaving better than she had thought after the shot.

She ordered Rosé wine and sat down on the sofa comfortably thinking of dragging the wine till the end of the party. Her drinking appetite is a maximum of two glasses of alcohol. She did manage quite well sipping through small sips of wine once in a while, turning down any offer of refills that came after that. It was quite late into the party and her wine glass had only the last layer of liquid left, that she was offered Sangria.

The Sangria did not do any good. The composure she showed after the tequila shot was diminishing. She could feel her head getting heavier and her smiles getting broader, she looked happy and she was enjoying it all, in short she was drunk.

She told me all this today in the morning, apologising for her erratic behaviour last night. Few pointers that I gathered after listening to her experience – i) don’t drink Tequila empty stomach, or for that matter any drink empty stomach, ii) drink lots of water in between your drinks to nullify the effect of alcohol in your blood, iii) it is better to be drunk with your colleagues than with your boy/girl friend as the worst you will do when you have lost it is make stupid jokes with your co-workers, iv) a plate of Nachos along with the drinks is not enough, order more food as you go along, v) have your trip to go back home sorted before you decide to get drunk and most importantly vi) don’t forget you will have to meet those in the party early next morning for a meeting!!!

Monday, August 03, 2009

A trip to Nairobi, Kenya

I was away last week on a business trip to Kenya. Whilst I did enjoy the business class flight and the stay at one of Africa’s best hotels and facilities which come with a business trip, the real icing on the cake for me was meeting the Kenyans.

8.15pm flight lands at Kenyan International airport and you see Karibu written as you make your way through the airport (Karibu means Welcome in Sohali, the Kenyan language). I walk towards the immigration check officer who after greeting me, remarks with a stone face – ‘Your visa has expired’. For a moment, the world stopped for me, I got my visa done specially for this trip and it has already expired. Just when I was about to say something (even though that moment I dint know what), he replied – ‘I am joking, welcome to Nairobi’. Phew! That was scary. I thanked him for his joke and walked towards the baggage claim rewinding the incident all over in my mind. Back home, I was warned about BA’s record of loosing bags and hence having to go to office in the same pair of clothes next day. It was a relief to find my suitcase taking rounds. I move towards the exit keeping a close watch on the swarm of people holding white pages with names hand-written. I had only started to think that my taxi from hotel is not there probably that just then I spot a big guy waiting with a big placard embossed with N Agarwal. As I jump into the taxi, he remarks to tie the seat-belts as he is going to drive real fast, which sounded strange but I still try to oblige him, only to be told that it was a joke. Gosh! People have a different sense of humour here, nice one I said to myself. And by the way, he drove slower than brisk walking, honestly!

After saying ‘Asanti Sana’ to the driver (meaning thank you very much) and jumbo to the hotel receptionist (jumbo means hello), I went to my hotel room to prepare for a tough next day. The next few days were the busiest days of my life yet. I have never worked so much in any of the 18 years of my academic life that I worked during this trip. The only bit of Nairobi I saw was from my office to the hotel which is 5 minutes walk. Strange is, even if it is such a short walk, but people from office in the evening would come down to book a taxi back to the hotel. It is very unsafe in Nairobi I hear. Having said that, I have met the best people, so professional and yet with such a personal touch. I loved the food at the hotel. My recommendation to those going to Nairobi for a vacation is Hotel Serena. Try it, I loved their hospitality.

What else?! Oh yes the most amazing part – after this arduous week I did treat myself with a Cellutox body massage at Serena. An amazing and relaxed one hour! The flight back home was more comfortable than the onward journey as BA was now aware of my ‘special food requirements’ which in short means vegetarian food. Apart from bringing home with myself the love and hospitality of the Kenyans, I have got some Kenyan tea; I am still to open the box so comments on that will follow later.