Friday, August 06, 2010

Pardes

Its been a month, I have moved out of Hyderabad, well not for good, but yes surely for some time. In IT parlance am in a long term onsite assignment. So am here in South California in the lovely city of San Diego, and its been more than a month. I have been here before, but those were all short term, maximum being couple of months so this was different.

Firstly, there was a whole lot of convincing to be done at home, yes my wife doesn’t like the option of being away from me. (I know am irresistible) It was a career shift, so it was in the pipeline for sometime and we both ignored it, till it came upon us. And then we decided to chug along the master plan of LIFE.

Shifting is a big job, first you need to pack all your stuff somehow into those huge bags which have to weigh exactly 26 kilograms each unless you want to burn a hole in your pocket paying for excess luggage. You need to carry some basic cooking stuff, at-least that’s the norm and who am I to challenge the norm. You have to meet and say bye to all people and friends, coz you never know when you would meet them again as the stay is not pre-defined.

Coming to how stuff works here, no am still not an expert but its just a list down on stuff the way they were thrown to me.
  1. You cant do anything here unless you have a Social Security
  2. Everyone wants to sell you stuff but no one would unless you have a credit score. And you won’t have a credit score unless you take a loan and pay it back and no zero credit isn’t a good thing down here.
  3. You can work your way around by paying lot of security deposits, which was taken care of by my benevolent colleagues here.
  4. Paying by cash is looked down upon.
  5. Temperatures and distances are in Fahrenheit and Miles. So when people ask you whats the temperature back their in your place, you got to do C/5= (F-32)/9 in your mind before you can answer. Well 105 is a safe answer unless you stay in Shimla or Kashmir.
  6. No one knows what a lakh is? Or for that matter ladies finger and brinjal. And I thought they were English words.
  7. You buy most of your stuff second hand, from random people looking up craiglist. ( This website has been a great blessing)
  8. There are no tube-lights or ceiling fans in any of the houses(Ok any of the houses I have seen).
  9. Saving paper is over-rated. On one side they try to save it, and on the other they use it for everything and you know where am getting it.
  10. Any activity on the cell phone is charged, there are no freebies.
  11. Your post box is spammed with promotional mails.
  12. Wine shops are bigger and better than the most of the shopping malls back there in India. You are spoilt with choice.
  13. Offers are there round the clock 365 days a year. There is no fixed price for any product, different outlets offer different prices, so buy and then don’t ask anyone else how much they bought it for.
  14. You get to celebrate your b’day, twice in a year, one when your family and friends back in India wish you, and then the actual day here in the US. :)

Well this list will go on as I would keep discovering new things about this place. Settling down in a new place hasn’t been new to me and I can adjust pretty easily. I have stayed at so many places with people coming from varied backgrounds that I can easily get along. Still I miss India and home, not to say my lovely wife and all you wonderful friends. Internet and Vonage are the only things apart from the free flowing beer and wine that is keeping me going.

Watch this space for more.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Nicknames

They can be cute, funny and some times dreaded too. But surely at some point of time you are associated with one and then it remains with you for a good period of your life and in some cases your life time, and in some avoidable cases it becomes your identity for the rest of your life.

This blog post is not about the cute lovey dovey ones, that either our parents or loved ones give us, but the ones that become our identity more so when we are in a hostel environment. Cant blame the people when so many people co exists creativity flows and in most cases ends up in a dreaded unmentionable nickname.

I have had the unenviable distinction of being on the receiving end during my four years of Engineering. How that name got stuck and how it became my identity isn’t something I would be letting you guys know. I have always hated that nickname, so don’t expect any juicy tidbits there. And yes my frnds who would walk by this post would surely post that am quite sure of that.

So I had a nickname, no it didn’t end at that, it became my identity, even to the extent that my frnds parents would refer to me (thank god in my absence) by that name. Cant blame them.

I tried various strategies to shrug off the name, that my friend leaked out one day in the dining hall and which then went on to become my identity, from seniors to juniors all knew me by that name. I would assume the proffessors dint know or atleast had the courtesy not to call me by that name. That I was mostly bunking lectures might have worked out in my favour.

I was just thinking of the various ways one could nip such avoidable nicknames in the bud. If you get irritated then they obviously like it and they keep calling you. You cant pick up a fight with 400 of them.. Impossible!! If you play along, then they think you like it anyways so they call you anyways. You cant ignore them, coz you meet them everywhere. Living four years away from family they were like an extended family themselves.

Much as I hate my nickname, but I love all the wonderful memories that comes along with it and the wonderful friends I made in those four years. But I still hate it when I have to introduce myself to my some long lost friend of mine over the phone, by my nickname. But then thats life..

But how do you shrug off a nickname, food for thought, if you have any pointers, you know where to write.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

2010 Updates

Five months have passed this year, and am still living under the excuse of being too busy for ignoring my blog. Also my new addiction has to be blamed for the long absence. So finally when I logged in and saw that the last post was in November 2009, I immediately decided to post one right now.
So this isnt about any pcl tag, or any pcl issue, this is just my life in general. People expecting juicy tidbits would be disappointed and hence may leave now(Dont tell me I didnt warn you guys)
Ever since I have been on the new project, life has gone for a toss, first casualty being my gym. From being a regular, I hardly can recollect the last time I saw my gym. My sneakers and clothes are still in the locker( I sincerely hope this is the case)
Funny how things change, I was always waiting for one big project, since it was sometime, I was into one, and was really getting desperate and one lands right away, and now I dont have anything in my life other than that. Working late nights, exchanging hi's and hello's with my wife over the phone or in person during weekends has become the norm. Working weekends, long meetings conference calls and unlimited coffees and teas interspersed with long email chains has become a routine.
The only person who is very happy with all this is my Dad. My Dad being a workaholic, thinks its great that I have a lot of work. Being a hard working Public servant, he sees it as a good sign that the company is doing well and am getting numerous opportunities. My wife has her share of complains, but is now okay that I took a full day off and we both treated ourselves to a luxurious holiday to celebrate my second marriage anniversary. ( Yes guys!! you need to celebrate certain mistakes inorder to avoid repercussions).
Well wont bore you all with the steady monologue, so presenting in points form the highs and lows of the year so far for moi..
  1. Celebrated the new year with a large family gathering with a trip to Ooty, Coonoor and Neliyampathy. ( for pics pls lookup my orkut profile here)
  2. One of my best friends got married, was the witness for the marriage. (Wish them all love and luck)
  3. Travelled to California for 45 days, was a lovely trip, with the august company of project mates and lots of wine and beer. ( Managed to put on 4 kgs in this trip)
  4. Came back to open arms of my wife, my house and my lovely city Hyderabad to face the hot and humid summer ( This is really some change)
  5. Some interesting career move happening(more on this later, most of you already know)
  6. Two yrs of a bitter sweet love filled marriage completed. Love my wife for being with me and most importantly bearing me. (Looking forward to many many more sweet memories)
  7. Got hooked on to Twitter. Follow me here www.twitter.com/sreejitsh

Missed a few close friends marriages thanks to this very hectic schedule, havent called and spoken to a lot of them. But the primary priority right nw is a trip to Kerala to visit parents. Leaves are a distinct possibility so just waiting for the appropriate time.

Hopefully would post more often and next time better ones..

Thanks for reading... and awaiting the comments...

Monday, November 30, 2009

26/11 -The Anniversary

Finally the much awaited anniversary is over. So what did we do on that big day.
Some news channels re-visited the horrific scenes, some others called upon a panel to discuss the anniversary. Some others made available graffiti or poster where citizens could write some messages and feel patriotic and proud. Some famous patrons assembled themselves at the Gateway of India, while others were content giving interviews about the so called spirit of Mumbai and how guests have started pouring into the Taj or for that matter the Leopold Café.

If one were to believe the unofficial reports we spend about 31 crores a year to keep Kasab in jail. And the trial keeps going on and on. Just today his lawyer was sacked. Now we would spend another 2 months finalizing his replacement.
I thought the entire world saw him brandishing his AK 47. He even confessed to his crime. What more do you want to pronounce him guilty? How many more dossiers do we need to send to Pakistan. Or are we waiting for Uncle Sam to tell us Kasab is guilty.

I will tell you my idea of the anniversary, hang Kasab by the neck in full public view. Send his body and that of the other 9 slain terrorists to Pakistan and if they refuse give them a burial here. And to double the extravaganza hang Afzal Guru as well. Well, I hope people still remember his name. Because public memory is very short-lived, otherwise how could RR Patil be re-elected as the home-minister of Maharashtra within a year?

And all those people thinking am a blood thirsty, eye for an eye kind of a heartless guy, I give a damn. If anyone attacks your home, would you keep quiet. Will your reaction be the same? Why are we so not bothered? And if you call that the spirit of Mumbai then God damn you. Its just a selfish attitude. As long as it doesn’t affect me and my relatives and friends I live under the so called spirit of Mumbai.

I feel pity for the martyrs like Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan who laid down their lives fighting the enemy coz, the state and the elected leaders are their biggest enemies.
So carry on writing grafitis and feel proud about it.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Adieu my dear friend!!

Its been more than a month, there has been so many attempts, but nothing saw the light of the day, nothing that I write can bring out the grief and the hollowness your loss has caused to us. It all still feels like some cruel joke, some kind of a bad dream. When I first heard it, I couldnt believe it. Someone who was always smiling, cracking his share of PJs, so full of life is suddenly no more.

Couldnt the truck driver, stop and rush you to some hospital? Couldnt the cop, instead of chasing the truck have attended to you? Couldnt the first hospital admit you? Couldnt the so called noble profession save you eventually? Couldnt you fight death a little longer? How can God even think about it? Is there really someone up there? This cannot be, how can you do this, like this fellow had his entire life infront of him. He was just 27.

Death as they say is a great leveller, we are all happy and proud one day, thinking of our achievements, sharing so many emotions thinking we rule this world, and then something like this comes up and you cannot do anything, you are bloody helpless. You feel like a loser. Yes thats exactly how am feeling all this while. Someone snatched you away from us, and we couldnt do anything. We just couldnt do anything.

I dont know if there is after life? But I want to believe in it. Coz I want to meet you, tell you how sorry Iam, how much we all miss you. Tell you that just one day before this fateful event, me and Sujith wanted to call you, but then we thought we would call you later. That day never came, the next day brought with it the sad news of your death.

I couldnt come and even see you one last time. I couldnt, I did not want to see you in that state, for me you could never be like that. The image I have of you is captured in my mind. Its your smiling face and no power on mother earth can wipe that out. Thats how I want to remember you. I want to remember all the lovely time we spent during the four years we were in college and the numerous times we met after college and ended up sloshed and called each other names.
I want to remember, the card games we used to play bunking lectures, us ragging the poor first years, us collecting money from hostel to arrange booze, the numerous rides on your bike, the nights when we burnt midnight oil preparing for exams, the Mohan Lal movies we saw, fighting our lives for the tickets,our final year dance performance, our copying assignments, your last ball six which won us the match against the Civil Team, and many many more moments worth their weight in gold.

As friends I never got the chance to tell you, how special you were, how lucky I was to be your friend. As time passes the angst will lessen, the injuries will heal, but your loss will always be felt.
I will meet you one day, then we will again pull each others legs, call each other names drunk and beyond making any sense, but this time I will surely tell you Vijesh how much I love you and that you have been more than a friend to me.
Wherever you are, always be happy and be smiling. As for us we will continue to miss you.
A bereaved friend.

PS: Vijesh met with an accident last month, on his way back from office near Marthalli Bangalore, where a truck went over him. He lay on the road bleeding for an hour before being taken to a hospital, where they refused to admit him, and by the time they rushed him to another, he was no more. Thus destiny snatched from us our friend, from a young boy his brother and from two proud parents their elder son.

Monday, October 19, 2009

ABC Tag

I have been awfully lazy, and been suffering from bloggers' block(coined by myself). I have had several half written posts, which were deleted after some time. Finally my new found blogger friend Moo helped me with another tag. Its called the ABC Tag. Why? Find out for yourself.

1) A – Available/Single?
Available this week, my wife is out of town.. :P
2) B – Best friend?
Bob, Susmi, Kiran, Sujith, Ranjith, Vijesh, Sankar, Prasanth, Sachin, Arnab, Alok, Bhanu, Anju, Sumeets(there are two of them), Ajay and the list goes on…
3) C – Cake or Pie?
Black Forest cake or Pastry anything would do.
4) D – Drink of choice?
BEER, anytime, anywhere, any brand would do, but if given a choice, Guinness would be preferred.
5) E – Essential item you use every day?
Bare essentials(Read chuddies), Contact lenses, watch, wallet.
6) F – Favorite colour?
Blue and Black (Not the colour u get after an injury).
7) G – Gummy Bears Or Worms?
I want to use ‘phone a friend’ option.
8) H – Hometown?
Palakkad, Kerala
9) I – Indulgence?
Any form of alcohol.
10) J – January or February?
July, yours truly was born on that month.
11) K – Kids & their names?
Abhi abhi to shaadi huyee hain yaar, kyon watt laga raha hain..
12) L – Life is incomplete without?
Being able to do the things I want to.
13) M – Marriage date?
18th May.
14) N – Name? Your real name!!
If you still don’t know my name, then you are the dumbest person, and you cant be reading my blog.
15) O – Oranges or Apples?
Neither, Mangoes for me.
16) P – Phobias/Fears?
Nothing in particular, am the next Kathron ke Khiladi host…May be we can include the Giant wheel in this. I don’t know if there is a phobia for it.
17) Q – Quote for today?
I hate Mondays!!
18) R – Reason to smile?
Talking to loved ones, spending time with them. Coming home and drinking hot cup of tea/coffee.
19) S – Season?
Winters in India
20) T – Tag 3 People?
Anju, Shabbu and Arnab
21) U – Unknown fact about me?
I love shopping and can spend hours checking out things.
22) V – Vegetable you don’t like?
Raw Papaya.
23) W – Worst habit?
Getting up horrible late everyday
24) X – X-rays?
Twice, both times for my broken wrist.
25) Y – Your favorite food?
Ghar ka khana, daal chaval and aloo ki sabzi.
26) Z – Zodiac sign?
LEO, koi shak!! WTF!!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Tees sawal tees jawab!!

I am tagged again by Moo and it was a fun tag to begin with. Hope you have as much fun reading it like I had in posting it.

1) When you looked at yourself in the mirror today, what was the first thing you thought?
Hmmm!! I need a Shave
2) How much cash do you have in your wallet right now?
Rs 382
3) What’s a word that rhymes with DOOR?
BORE, Funny no one who took this tag before me thought about it, may be because that’s what am feeling right now.
4) Who is the 4th person on your missed call list on your cell phone?
Bob, my best friend since school and now my neighbour, isn’t that great!!
5) What is your favorite ring tone on your phone?
Nokia ring tone, that’s the only decent one that my phone comes with. It’s a very high end mobile.
6) What are you wearing right now?
Shorts and Tee
7) Do you label yourself?

Some times yes
8) Name the brand of the shoes you’re currently own?
Rockport and Adidas
9) Bright or Dark Room?
Dark room when am sleeping, otherwise a bright room.
10) What do you think about the person who took this survey before you?
A very interesting and spontaneous person with zero pretence and a very good blogger.
11) What does your watch look like?
It’s Cruiser,with a White dial and Stainless steel Strap, gifted by my bestest buddy bro Shyam. I simply love my watch.
12) What were you doing at midnight last night?
Enjoying my drink with Bob on the terrace of our flat.
13) What did your last text message you received on your cell say?
Balance in your account number XXXXXXX is Rs32.65. You can withdraw upto Rs32.65. (Believe me I have been tempted to withdraw Rs32.65, but darn the ATM doesn’t disburse cash less than Rs 100)
14) What’s a word that you say a lot?
SHIT
15) Who told you he/she loved you last?
My loving wife.
16) Last furry thing you touched?
My wife’s soft toy
17) Favourite age you have been so far?
Hmmmm that’s difficult to say, I have loved all the ages I have lived so far, basically I have had a good life.
18) What was the last thing you said to someone?
Don’t disturb me, am try to blog something( To my wife)
19) The last song you listened to?
Truly, Madly, Deeply ( Savage Garden)
20) Where did you live in 1987?
Kolkata
21) Are you jealous of anyone?
At present of Cristiano Ronaldo
22) Is anyone jealous of you?
Don’t know, couldn’t care less.
23) Name three things that you have on you at all times?
My watch, my contact lenses and my wedding ring.
24) What’s your favourite town/city?
This is difficult, it’s a close tie between Mumbai and Hyderabad.
25) When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper and mailed it?
Hmm I guess, it was in 2000
26) Can you change the oil on a car?
No.
27) Your first love/big crush: What is the last thing you heard about him/her?
That She was Sorry!!
28) Does anything hurt on your body right now?
No.
29) What is your current desktop picture?
Bunch of tulips
30) Have you been burnt by love?
In a way Yes,

Phew, when I started doing this, I thought it would be pretty simple, but it was pretty tough and I know it doesn't make a good reading but then its my blog, I write what I want to, you can do the same in the comments section.

I tag Anju and Shabbu.