Friday, December 18, 2009

Lights. . Camera. . Action!

It's been a while. . .
I know I've shouldn't have kept you waiting. . .
But it's worth the wait. . . (I hope!)


Day and Date: A hot summer day in 2008. In fact, it was the hottest day that summer.

Location: Ushodaya junction, Visakhapatnam.

Scene: A Police officer trying to catch a fleeing thug.

Actors:
K Chaitanya, a.k.a. K.C. as the Police officer.
Chandramouli Daga, a.k.a. Mouli as the fleeing thug.

It was the first time I was going to shoot a film. Our director/producer/story writer, Mouli worked hard in the last few months to put together the team of people who were now part of our unnamed film project (later named as “In the End”). The people present that day were; Me, Mouli, K.C., Abhiram and Jonah.

I was pretty excited in spite of the scorching sun. I bet everyone else was as excited as I was. The scene had to take place on four houses which had almost connecting roof tops. Yes baby, we are talking about park over.

The scene went something like this. Mouli, the thug enters on his Avenger and parks his bike; and starts walking towards the pre-planned place where he has to collect something. (Since he is the bad guy, understood that it is something illegal) As he reaches the place and awaits the delivery, he is shocked by the sudden appearance of a police officer with a gun (Of course, you need a gun!). Even as Mouli tries to convince the Officer that he is after the wrong guy, he starts running; Henceforth beginning the chase.

The first part of the whole shooting business was to convince the people living in those houses to give us permission to shoot. We went to them; tried to convinced them, coaxed them, confused them and did whatever possible. Though most of them agreed readily, happy that their house is going to appear in a movie, no matter how trivial, we had one old man, who was not in a mood to give permission that easily.

Man (In a strict voice): What are you shooting?

We (Sincerely): Sir, we are shooting a movie for a college project (Of course, bull shit!)

Man (Suspiciously): What project?

We (Intelligently): It is actually a Movie making competition sir. We are taking part in that. (Trying to confuse him)

Man (Confusedly): You have permission from your principal?

We (Again, Sincerely): Of course sir! (As if we really asked anyone!)

Man (Not-quite-convinced): Show me the permission letter.

We (Faces screwed up in a pleading/pathetic way): Actually, we didn’t get it sir. We were in a hurry since the last day is fast approaching. If good people like you don’t help us, how will we do it sir?

Man (Falling for it): Will you be careful and not break/damage anything?

We (Sincere expression returning, in unison): Of course sir!

Man: OK. You can shoot then. But in case anything is damaged. . . (Wagging a wrinkled finger at us)

We (PETRIFIED/SCARED): No sir!

Man (Pleased): Go ahead. All the best!


We then got on top of a three floor building opposite to these houses like agents from a Bond movie as we didn’t have permission to use those roofs. Mouli started explaining me the scene with so much fervor and intensity that, I was too scared even to move (the thought was that, he would beat me up if I did). He screwed his eyes in concentration and made a frame with his hands and pointed to the road from the roof top.

Mouli (His tone grave and precise): I will enter the scene from a few hundred feet away from the place I’d stop. You have to keep me in the frame and follow me until I stop. Then, capture me walking till I disappear into the steps of the first house. Then shift the frame down and capture K.C. coming from this building that we are standing on currently.

Me (Standing in attention, Hands folded): Mm Hmm . . . (Nodding furiously)

Mouli: Next scene, we will shift to the houses where we begin the park over. (At the mention of the word park over, he gets excited and starts bouncing up and down) Let’s do it baby! (Pokes me in the ribs). I’ll give a missed call once I start. You start recording then.

Me (Excited as well, but nothing compared to Mouli): Yeah, let’s do it.


Next, Mouli starts on his bike after giving us the missed call. I start recording. Sadly, there is another guy on a similar Avenger. I follow him till half way. Abhiram spots the mistake and points to the direction in which Mouli is coming. Damn, we had to do a retake! Mouli, who remains a sport for a second shot on any given day, agreed without much ado and I spotted him this time, spot on. I was elated on finishing my first shot on a movie shoot. Cheers. But, the day had just begun and the experience of shooting movies also had just begun.

We toiled the rest of the morning till late afternoon, forgetting trivial things like lunch and tan. I had to run around holding our camera for the film, a 5.0 Mega pixel canon powershot camera. Yes, you read it right; we were shooting with a digital camera. Cool, isn’t it? Though it records the sound of wind and shakes, for people who think the quality of the movie would be like that of a security CC TV camera, I would challenge them to say the same after they see our movie.

Back to business, Mouli and K.C. did a pretty awesome job for a park over considering that all of were armatures with this stuff. (I am not giving a self-compliment but this is what people told us) Mouli and K.C. jumped roofs while I crouched and slouched in awkward positions to make sure that I got the angle in the director’s mind as he wanted. : ) after finishing the shoot which ended with the bad guy a.k.a Mouli successfully escaping the police, almost every scene took three or four retakes. We were completely exhausted and out of breath by then. As we huddled up at the place where we parked our bikes, the old timer from the morning came back.

Man: Finished?

All of us in unison: Yes sir! Thanks a lot.

Man: Which college did you say you people were from?

All of us, again: MVGR College sir!

Man: Yeah! I know your principal pretty well, actually when I was working at some place. . .

He started ranting off on some memories of his golden young days as we continued dripping sweat. The hunger was fast catching up. With perfect synchronization, me and Mouli got onto our respective knees and let out a grunt of pain and tiredness, pretty much audible to everyone. The old man caught the signal pretty fast.

Man: Right then, all the best for your movie. Hope it turns out the way you want it to be.

All of us in unison: Thank you sir!

As the old man left us, we shared hi-fis and started on our way back to our respective homes. This was the beginning for many more to follow. This was only the beginning. : )

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

An year down the memory lane!

It's been an year since the horrifying terror attack took place in Mumbai. The financial capital of our country was put in turmoil by a bunch of crazy lunatics who thought destruction was the way to achieve their objectives. Hundred lost their lives and the psychological trauma left behind was beyond the scope of imaginations. But the Mumbaikars recovered soon enough and brought back our financial capital to life. As we pay homage to our heroes like,
Assistant Police Sub-Inspector Tukaram Omble[37], who succeeded in capturing a terrorist alive, with his bare hands.
* Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad Chief Hemant Karkare
* Additional Commissioner of Police: Ashok Kamte
* Encounter specialist: Vijay Salaskar
* Senior inspector Shashank Shinde
* NSG Commando, Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan
* NSG Commando, Hawaldar Gajendra Singh
My very good friend Pradyumna, who is a good writer himself did a post on the tragedy and it's impact on our society. Hope it makes you think, just like it made me think. Good job dude. Enjoy the post guys. . .

March 12th, 2003:

A series of thirteen explosions in Mumbai, then called Bombay, resulted in 257 deaths and over 700 injuries. The blasts were orchestrated by the organized crime syndicate called the D-Company, headed by Dawood Ibrahim.

We Indians are a bunch of peace loving people. We are extremely tolerant. For the next 15 years all terrorist attacks that killed scores of innocent Indians, wounded and crippled some for the rest of their lives had one simple fact to tell. The simple fact was overwhelmingly clear and barely obvious on the surface of it. Yes, we can take a lot more, we can take a lot more of blood-shed, yes, we have a lot many people to spare (after all, we are the 2nd most populous country in the world), and yes, every enterprising terrorist is never denied a right to kill under an equal opportunity scheme in the world’s biggest democracy. Rats from across the border are cordially received by the rats inside the country and successfully bombs are planted and human life is juiced and pulp-ed. In an overwhelming urge to welcome all people, in an unending desire to press all people to our bosoms, our hearts, we couldn’t identify the rats from across the border and those rats among ourselves (these are of the dangerous kind, the kind that feed on milk from the breast of a mother and then strike her dead) we attracted the wrath of un stable nihilistic rats, surprisingly humans, who kill for no reason.

And what did we do about it? Nothing! We adjusted. Well if they planted bomb in a train, the next day we took the train again, we never questioned why? because our near or dear werent there on that train. And if they were there on that train, what did we do? We questioned God but never once questioned ourselves!

Why did this happen? how could a bunch of radicals, a dozen armed mad-men come into the heart of this country and wound my brothers and sisters? How could they raise questions on the integrity of the population? 'We’ are always waited for some other person to raise the questions while we ourselves were comfortable and safe. We always looked at the government that is always rendered inactive during times of crisis (they are always too busy blaming themselves). But then something happened, one day exactly one year back that changed the thought process of the “AAM AADMI”:

November 26th, 2008:

The 2008 Mumbai attacks were more than ten coordinated shooting and bombing attacks across Mumbai, India's financial capital and its largest city. The attacks, which drew widespread condemnation across the world, began on 26 November 2008 and lasted until 29 November, killing at least 200 people and wounding at least 308.

I still remember that dawn of November 26th, 2008. It was a pleasant morning. Chilling and lazy like any other winter morning. There were no signs of any impending holocaust. But, I still remember how I watched with horror as the terrorists took siege of the Taj hotels and the Oberoi hotel. I still remember the visual of terrorist, who was looking very much like like any other student, shooting at people in the Chatrapati Sivaji Terminal. I remember how I watched the Indian fight against terror for the next 3 days. As I watched all these visuals of what was happening to my brothers and sisters there, along with the rest of the country, something seemed to seethe and simmer inside me......my blood started boiling. So did the blood of all other Indians who were watching what was going on.

These attacks were a slap across the face of India, a slap that awoke all Indians from their indifferent slumber. For once the tolerance of Indians broke, for once they were tired of staying mum, of adjusting, of tolerating, of accepting, of being defeated, of being run about, of fear, of indifference, of nihilism, of fucking terrorists who took lives of their brothers and sisters. It was high time it all stopped and that was the day when Indians thought ‘ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.’

Ultimately always good comes out of bad, and in that sense bad is also good in its on way. Heroes were born. Ordinary people reacted in an extraordinary way. The entire nation for once forgot its differences and came together to raise voice against the injustice, against the madness. For once, Indians identified themselves as Indians, not as Punjabis, Rajasthanis, Tamils. The whole country prayed for their brothers and a sense of universal brotherhood prevailed. The world was shown what 1 billion of people, who stood on one word can achieve. The spirit that was India was displayed. Every Indian, raised above his small problems and stood up for the cause. The cause to save Indians, not to tolerate such incidents of horror again.

Today, one year after it all happened, I think we can all assert with confidence that we are a different bunch of people. This time around we are a more mature lot of people. We saw the spirit that is Indian and the unity among ourselves. We realized the need to remain united against all these challenges. To raise our voice against terrorism in all forms. For sure there wont and should not be another 26/11. Come lend a hand.........and let it reverberate...

Jai Hind!

By,
Pradyumna Malladi

A bolt of lightning!

I was inspired after reading a blog written by a girl from someplace I didn’t know. She wrote a firsthand account about how a girl would feel when she is about to kiss her boyfriend for the first time. I was quite disappointed that she ended the write up saying that it was all a dream that flashed through her brain while listening to a romantic song. Nevertheless, her narration was fantastic and very good to read. So, here I am, trying to write something romantic myself. I don’t expect it to be like Nicholas Sparks, A walk to remember or Eric Sehgal, Love Story. So, please bear with me.


This incident which is not exactly romantic is still a very memorable incident which I still happen to remember till the very trivial detail. It happened when I was doing my plus two. Those two years were the dark ages of my life. Along with being extremely bad in grades and irritable in behaviour, I was also fat and extremely unappealing. Many of my relatives wrote me off as a kid who didn’t talk much and kept himself to himself. It was December and my uncle was visiting India along with his family. We were having a real blast and lots of fun. We were in MGM Selvee World, a basically crappy but the only theme park in our city that made it popular. After paying 125 bucks for the tickets, we were able to get onto most of the rides given the fact that most of the rides are always under repairs. After finishing a few rides, we came up to the place with the Giant Wheel. That was an impressive addition to the park at that point of time because a theme park is never complete without a giant wheel.


As I stepped out into the openness of the park, a wave of cold swept from the ocean brushed against my face. It got better when the mist from the sea gave a tinge of warmth to the air. I could almost taste the salt in my mouth as I sucked in the cool sea breeze. I got high and started humming a happy tune. My three sisters were too busy talking to enjoy the climate. They were discussing about the latest Barbie dolls in town. (Err; Sushu, Bharu and Meena don’t mind you were pretty young then) My uncle was trying to make sure that we stayed and talked as a group. We queued up near the giant wheel. People were being put into cabins, four persons each. Since the thing was very new, the staffs were being extra careful and also extra fussy.


My uncle and my three sisters hopped in as soon as an empty one arrived. Through my uncle tried to convince the operator guy into putting me also into the cabin, he refused after looking at me, saying he had “weight considerations”, the asshole. I imagined punching him square in the face thrice and only managed to scowl at him and moved aside, feeling quite upset. I got into the next one, hoping I’d get a good view of the city which I could savour. I was also wishing that the cool breeze would drown the anger induced by the operator ass. As I settled myself into the next cabin, I spotted someone enter the cabin. I tried not to stare too much as I started capturing her face in the shimmering neon lights of the park. There was this song “Beete Lamhein” from “The Train” playing in the back ground. The image of her face remains etched in my head till this very moment and I recollect it as I type this on MS word 2007.


She was tall, slim and fair with a golden honey complexion that looked more radiant and bright in the orange neon light. Her eyes were soot black and had the depth of a black hole. Her gaze had a magnetic quality just like the depth of the black hole. Once you lock into the gaze, it’s almost impossible to unlock. She had cherry red pouted lips (No, she didn’t wear lipstick I am fairly sure) that held her beautiful smile. Her hair had a life of its own. She had the most wonderful soft and straight hair which reached till her shoulders and was left open to play with the wind. She entered the cabin pink and flustered. She was having great fun obviously. She thumped down on the semi-circular seat of the cabin, sitting exactly on the opposite side facing me. She uttered an audible grunt as her friends took another cabin as per the space requirements.


She acknowledged my presence with an enthusiastic hello. I looked up to greet her and I saw her much more completely this time. She was wearing a white t-shirt which said some incomprehensible nonsense along with a few specks of colour thrown in at random places. She wore brown cargos and sensible sport shoes. (I’ve seen females wearing pointed heels while dancing. God save them if they slip.) I nodded and greeted her with a straight face and extended my hand and introduced myself.

“Hi! I’m Harsha.”

“Hi Harsha, Good to meet you. I’m Shruthi.”


We then exchanged information about where we lived and what we were studying. I was in my second year of my plus two. She was one year my junior. I told her about my college, Sri Chaitanya and how they tortured us in the college day in and day out. She was a sympathetic listener and she also had her own experiences in FIIT JEE. I tried not to look too much at her, as she kept her deep black eyes locked on me all the topped with her magnetic glance.

“I live in Hyderabad and this is the first time I’ve come to Vizag. Beautiful place your city. I’m having a real blast.” She said.

“Yeah, you people must be loving the beach isn’t it? All you have in Hyderabad is a water tank which is fuller with Ganesh idols most of the time.”

She laughed heartily at my stupid joke. The wind started blowing the hair into her face sending it into her eyes and her mouth making her look like one of those Pepsodent ad models. She brushed the loose curls aside and started speaking again.


The ride by then had begun and the cabin stopped mid way as there were more people getting into the giant wheel. The wind here was much cooler and much heavier with the mist. I was lost for a moment in my own thoughts. I started sucking air through my mouth to taste the saltines of the sea. I caught her looking at me with an expression, mixed with curiosity and anxiety.

“Oh, I was just trying to taste the saltiness of the air. It becomes salty when it mixes with the mist of the sea you know. I just like doing it”
She closed her eyes and took a lungful of air though her mouth. She looked thoughtful for a minute and opened her eyes.

“Yeah, tastes good” she said with a smile.


I pointed out the various places in the city. From that height, in the night, Vizag was a big box of shining neon light jewels shimmering bright in the deep darkness. As the wheel started spinning, I started screaming just for the heck of it. The girl herself was completely unfazed and looked at me as I screamed.

“It gives more excitement to the ride I feel.” I said, feeling stupid for screaming like a ten year old.

She smiled her Pepsodent smile again and soon we were screaming “WEE” at the top of our voices both of us trying to sound louder than the other. After four rounds, she was able to identify Kailash hills and Dolphin nose with the knowledge I passed on to her. After fifteen minutes or so (lost count of time so I was unsure about the duration of the ride) the ride ended and soon we had to get off.


“It was great fun talking with you, I thought I’d get very bored” she said.

“Me too, you were also fun to talk with” I replied.

Since this is a real life experience none of us took the initiative of exchanging phone numbers or mail id’s. It doesn’t make sense when you know the girl only for ten minutes I thought. We shook hands and moved towards our respective groups.

“Hope I see you someday again” she said, with her smile fading away into a straight face.

“I wish the same” I said with a blank expression to hide the momentary sadness I felt.


I never saw her again after that but the memories of the day stay etched in my brain till this very day. Such is the course of life; some people enter in like bolts of lightning making you see the day light in the middle of the night, but only for a minute. Some people are like candles, they stand by you till they perish. Ignore the bolts, and stay faithful to your candles.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Some things that you wish you'd had. . .

Well well well. Hi ya folks! End of yet another season of exams and here I am all enthusiastic and back to writing my blog once again. This time I’m attempting to write something that I’ve never tried before. If this post is going to strike a vibe, you’ve probably seen things like this in your family as well.

To start off, I had the chance to attend a marriage of someone I knew well after a very long time. After I got into engineering, it’s only been attend-dinner/lunch type weddings that I’ve attended or seen. I met up with my cousins who were almost about the same age as me with few minor differences in ages. They were related to me from my father’s side and all of them were my second cousins if you put it that way. I was never really a part of their close knitted network but I was rather the fellow who did cameo appearances in few parts. I really enjoyed the wedding given the fact that I went out to relatively few weddings. We were chatting away the entire night since the wedding was to take place in the early morning. Such is the case with most Hindu marriages. The auspicious date, eight time out of ten is somewhere between midnight to wee hours of the night. Just to ensure that the people who are getting married feel special. How? They lose sleep; hence they remember the day they had to lose lovely sleep on a cold December night, to stay together for the rest of their life.

Coming back to me enjoying the wedding, we just chatted away the entire night talking about random stuff like college, people and stuff young people talk when they get the chance. Soon, it was time for the main ceremony. People, who slept, woke up rather unwillingly trying to steal few more minutes in the snugness of their blankets. We on the other hand looked tired and red eyed. Things didn’t help much when we were already sleep deprived from the tormenting exams that ended the very day.

But nothing deters the girls from their attempts to look good. Though we never bothered as much as to wash our faces, the girls were sitting with us all the time looking the same tired and red eyed way, were up in the flash as soon as the priest announced it was time. Soon, they were looking all fresh and beautiful in their new dresses reserved for occasions like these. We had no choice to admire them and take pictures. Sad man.
As the wedding progressed, people became more active and the sleep spell started to fade away, as our suppressed sleep spell started to surface itself. Soon, the starters were done with and it was time for the major ceremony. As the groom tired the Magala Sutra around the bride’s neck binding them together for the rest of their life, people rejoiced and blessed them all with luck and happiness throughout their life. I was standing there with the rest of the people holding a camera and clicking pictures. After the grim and emotional main ceremony there was the part that young people in the ceremony enjoyed.
Called the Talambralu ceremony, the bride and the groom showed each other with rice. Why? I do not know. But this much I can tell you. The people who get married love doing it for a reason, it’s the only part of the marriage that you don’t have to do what you are told. You just take handfuls of rice and shove it on the head of your better half. Cool, isn’t it?
I was standing on the side of the center stage where the proceedings took place. The first cousins of the girl who was getting married crowded around her, whistling and thoroughly enjoying their sister’s happiness. Of course, they were born and brought up together. They played together throughout their childhood and shared their worlds. One person’s happiness or sadness was shared with everyone. They went to movies together and made fun of each other. The girl cousin helped her male cousin to talk with the girl he fancied and the male cousin made sure that the female cousin was not stopped from going to the movies she wanted because she was alone and it was not safe to let her go out alone. They helped each other on tough college assignments and the male cousin was able to pass the exam successfully with a little bit of copying from his female cousin’s paper.

As the Talambralu ceremony continued, I saw the female cousins shed a few tears as they were going to miss a beloved member of their family, a person who grew up with them, a person who was the part of their life till that day. I felt sad and jealous. Why? I was more like a friend to them. A friend with whom you shared jokes and hi-fi’s whenever you met. I felt sad because I missed that part of growing up. I was jealous because, I was not sure if that joy would come in my life.

All three of my dad’s brothers immigrated to US when my own cousins were little kids. Though they visited us once in every two or three years; though we frequently chatted online, text couldn’t replace smiles and cell phones couldn’t replace comforting embraces. All my life I’ve grown up with friends as my world. So, is the case with anyone who has their direct relatives living far off. It is easy when they are accessible at least in summer vacations or in winter holidays. But it’s hard to meet up when they are living a thousand miles on the other side of the ocean.

I knew the joy of celebrating a birthday with ten of my friends whooping my ass after I fed them with food. I knew the joy of riding on a friend’s bike as we went to college. I knew the joy of going to the beach after a late night’s sleepover. I knew the joy of bunking college and going to movies with them.

But I only knew about sitting in restaurants and talking about people we knew when my own cousins met me. I never had the pleasure of celebrating my birthday with my cousins spraying party foam all over the place. I never had the chance to sneak out with them for late night movies. I never had the chance to console them when they were sad and I never had the chance to hug them when I was overjoyed. All I knew was using smiles on yahoo messenger and facebook to express what I really felt.

People say that, you only realize what you lost until you find the joy in having it. I’ve lost the chance to share my childhood and teens with my cousins. I’ve lost the chance to live with them. So, is the case with many people in our Indian societies. When this will stop? I don’t have an answer. Do you? Will the need for making money ever overpower the need for family? I still don’t know. . .

Friday, November 13, 2009

Trying to remember... Unable to decipher!

They say romantic feelings create poems. They say break up’s cause poems. They say nature makes you create great poems. But sometimes great irritation makes you write poems. Here is one . . .

I wake up this morning; my head is in a misty haze. . .
I try to clear the haze, looking into the mirror at my own face. . .

My eyes are red; my face looks stressed. . .
Oh yeah, I do look depressed. . .
And yes, I’m just out of bed. . .

What is with today?
It doesn’t seem to be my usual day. . .
What is wrong with today?

I take the bus, Reach College in a rush. .
I take a quick brush though my books still in a rush. . .
Alas, I’ll still have to face anguish. . .

At the paper I stare, my thoughts focused elsewhere. . .
I look at a dewy flower. . .
Admire how it blossoms in the chilly November. . .

Of course, then I falter with an answer. . .
Unable to decipher. . .
Forgetful to remember. . .
That what I read last night, right before dinner. . .

I write the paper at my own will. . .
Pushing the subject down the hill. . .

I try to get though the post exam banter. . .
As the bright kids chatter. . .
Reminding me where I always falter. . .

I don’t care as ever. . .
As I only think “Whatever. . . “

Grades are like a splattering rain in summer. . .
They may make you feel better. . .
They may also make you feel bitter. . .
But, they don’t last forever. . .

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Fighter Kid!

This is one hilarious incident that I can never forget in my life. This happened when I was in class ten. Me and my friends had to stay back for a maths extra class. I was really irritated and bored after a very long session of maths. Our teacher Chamudeshwari madam was about sixty years old. For some reason she used to resemble this tweety bird from that Loony Toons show. We used to have great fun in her class. Her specialty was that she never got tired of writing on the board. So, that day she went on writing for about 20 minutes non-stop. Our hands started twitching and paining. Finally after about 23 minutes, we saw her put away the chalk piece and massaging her right shoulder with an expression of pain on her face. We were all relieved and put away our pens. She looked at our faces of relief and gave us a wry smile. She twittered in her musical voice. "You may think I cannot write any more but you are mistaken..." We held our breath. She looked around like a magician about to pull out a great trick. We all watched with careful attention. She pulled out a new chalk piece and started writing with her left hand, leaving us all gaping.

I then got into the bus, which was actually for kids from LKG to fifth standard. I sat in the first single seater from the drivers end. I was pretty tired and exhausted after that grueling session of writing. Then this kid came inside the bus. A big heavy bag on his back and a water bottle slung around his neck, he was not more than five years old. Must've been first or second standard, not more than that. He pointed to the seat I was sitting in and said,
"Oy! That place you are sitting is mine. Get up!", he screwed up his eyes and raised his eye brows and made his expression very serious.

I didn't concentrate much till then, with his powerful dialogue, I craned my neck downwards to have a better look.

He looked like one of those kids from the Horlicks and Bournvita ad's with chubby cheeks and and a milky white face reddening every second with anger. He was like three feet tall.

"Hi Champ, I don't have a place to sit. Will you sit in my lap for today?", I asked him in a sweet voice.

"Nothing doing. You cannot sit in my place" he repeated.

My mood turned sore again with the defiance of this little kid who was about one third of height and about one fourth of my weight.

"I guess you have to stand then.", I said and turned to look out of the window.

He took off his bag and tossed it aside. He repeated the same stunt with his water bottle also. I couldn't blame him for that. He was watching too many movies. He curled up his tiny little fingers into a fist and shouted,

"I know how to do WWE!"

At this point of time, I couldn't help it, I burst into uncontrollable giggles. Trying hard to control my laughter, I started to speak again.

"Oh cool! So who is your favorite wrestler?"

He didn't like my laughing. He was absolutely pissed with my behavior. He started brandishing his little fists in my direction and warned me for the second time.

"I'm going to give you choke slam if you don't get up!"

Oh man! seriously, why do parents allow these little kids to see so much of violence at such a young age? Why couldn't they watch Cartoon Network like we did? And I then evaluated his choke slam warning. He was so blind with fury that, my anatomical details didn't register in his little brain.

"Please! Don't hit me. Why don't you come here and sit in my lap? I'll give you a chocolate." I said, trying to coax and cool him at the same time.

My offer didn't please him. He got redder and more mad. This time he came running and hit me in the stomach with a mock punch sound issuing from his mouth.

"Dhishum!! Dhishum!!"

I mock cried in anguish.

"Aaagh! Please don't beat me! Aww!", my smile gave me away.

This time he launched a full fury attack. He started hitting me where ever he felt like hitting. The blows were no effects for someone of my size but his little nails started scratching my skin pretty badly. The kid sensing that I was in no significant pain, tried to kick me in the sensitive areas of my body.

This time, I was seriously pissed.

"Will you stop it now? Or do you wan me to tell your mom!"

Nope. He didn't even pause to acknowledge what I said.

I then had a brain wave. I got up from the seat, picked up the kid and put him on the stand that is used for keeping bags. It was too high for him to jump down.

"AAAGHH!! STUPID!! PUT ME DOWN!! FATTY!! IDIOT!!", he started screaming.

The conductor, who was following the fight right from the beginning ignored him and winked at me. I returned him the wink to thank him for not interfering.

After sometime, the kid cooled down realizing that no one was going to help him beat me up. He then changed his strategy.

"Anna, PLEASE!! PUT ME DOWN NO!! PLEASE!!"

"Will you behave yourself this time?", I asked him in a strict tone.

"Yes I will" he promised. His tone sounded genuine.

I picked him up and made him sit in my lap. I offered him the Maha Lacto in my pocket. He gave me a full smile and started crunching away the candy. He looked damn adorable as his mood changed.

"Are you still angry with me? Will you talk to me?", I pleaded.

He nodded absent mindedly trying to mash the candy in his mouth.

"Will you play WWE cards with me?" He offered.

The rest of the journey was spent playing with him. I bid him good bye as my stop came. Kids are adorable creatures. No matter how annoying they are... :)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

C for Cricket! Wait, Commercial is more like it!

The end of another day; today was a little significant because I finished a lab for this Sem. The exam went on shockingly smooth without any major twists or headaches. The heavily speculated viva turned out to be a cake walk. So, I had a whole evening of fun ahead.
Mission one was accomplished in the afternoon. I was thoroughly satisfied after watching John Travolta and Denzel Washington in “The taking of Pelham 123”. I had a short nap and then settled myself snugly into an easy chair to watch the third ODI between India and Australia. By the time I switched on the TV, the first over was being bowled and Sachin was on strike facing the last ball. He played a beautiful cover drive that reached the boundary in a flash. Before I could even savor the delight of the moment, the screen switched to a commercial with grumpy people on a train who get all hyper after some dude starts humming the du tu du… theme of DOCOMO. I was pissed and irritated. Why couldn’t they show just one replay of the shot before moving onto the commercials? Nevertheless, I went on to watch the match. Somewhere in the eighth over Shewag got clean bowled by Mitchell Johnson. This time the replay was shown from four different angles. One from the top, one from the bowler’s side and one more from the stump that got dismantled in the process. X(

As the match went on, the screen used to go small all of a sudden with Hrithik Roshan popping up on the sides of the screen, trying to lure people into buying the new “Hero Honda Karizma ZMR”, which I heard was a major let down in the Karizma series. And this mostly used to happen when Dhoni or Yuvraj were maneuvering a particularly different run. My heart almost popped into my mouth at one instant when I heard a cracking crunch from my heavily amplified 1500 watts sound system. The thought in my mind was that; someone was bowled. But when the sidebar ad disappeared and the screen returned to normal size I was relieved to find out that it was just the sound of the bat when Yuvi was on forward defense.

As a fan of cricket and particularly more so when India progresses on a winning note, I kept watching the match though sidebar ad’s kept popping up regularly and there were ad’s every time the players paused as much as for a breath. By the end of 35 or 40 over’s, I memorized SRK’s lines in one of the Airtel ad’s, understood how special effects could be put to good effect after watching Hrithik brave a tornado for his lost cap because he had a Karizma ZMR, also how people could become more friendly when some random guy in a train starts humming the incomprehensible..
Du du du… Tu tu du…
Do do do.. co co co co.. mo mo mo…

(I’d rather prefer giving him a tight slap rather than humming something so dumb!)

The next irritating part came up when Dhoni started brandishing his bat with some super duper hits to the fence. The people who pay millions to secure the rights to broadcast matches were not observant enough to follow the ball when the guy hits the ball in a particular direction. One particular ball, the camera went completely haywire and turned leg side, while later I figured out that he cut the ball square on the off side. This happened few more times after that, with the camera going berserk in all random directions. This was particularly annoying because it happened only when Dhoni was hitting boundaries.

Anyhow, India did win the match in the end with Suresh Raina hit a four flicking it behind the wicket keeper. I saw Suresh Raina go and congratulate Dhoni for his superb captain’s knock. My chest swelled with pride as Dhoni lifted of the stumps. As I was admiring the men in blue as they walked onto the field to envelope the batsmen into a sea of blue, the screen changed abruptly changed and I saw an Oral B toothbrush ad right at the time when the celebrations must’ve been going on. Too bad. Even after the post match presentation ceremony I was alf expecting to see Yuvi ride his Man of the match present; the Karizma ZMR. But there was no time for showing that two minutes of joy in the commercial ridden cricket match.

Few years back, broadcasting of cricket matches was not this commercial. We didn’t have models going around interviewing cricketers (it’s actually a welcome change I’d say ;) ) or neither did we have bikini clad models dancing each time a player struck a boundary or picked up a wicket. Channels were also generous enough to let people enjoy the few minutes of national pride before they went on to justify the millions they were paid to show diapers and toothbrushes. After all, in India cricket is never a sport, it’s a religion. Makes me remember a slogan on one of the placards that I saw in one of the matches,
Cricket is our religion and Sachin is our god.
Hope the good ol’ days come back again. :)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The postive and the negative!

If you believe that there is a positive energy that exists in the form of god, you acknowledge it and appreciate it only when there is a negative energy.

I was watching a show on Discovery Channel a few minutes back. It was an episode of a series called The Haunting. The particular episode takes place in a horse ranch situated in a sub urban locality somewhere in the US. The show showed the struggle of a women fighting against the presence of a negative force in the place where she did her horse breeding business.

The cool thing about the show was that, the so called ghosts were portrayed as negative energy, not as ghosts with super natural powers that could break houses or levitate objects at will. I always believed that, the soul which resides inside a human body is a positive energy that keeps us moving. It’s the driving force for our life. When the body disintegrates and dies, the spirit moves on to find itself another body. When this doesn’t happen, the spirit gets trapped and bodiless and becomes a negative energy.

Why this happens? After watching lots of documentaries, movies and after attending few lectures on spirituality, I’ve understood that the trauma of a life leaves an impact on the never dying spirit which prevents it from moving onto the next life. This results in a negative presence that unleashes itself on whatever comes across its way in the place where it gets stuck.

The major objective of any religion having a set of ethical rules is to keep the spirit clean and to help it move on from one life to another without any disturbance. When one fears a higher presence, they flinch when they commit a mistake. They fear that they may get punished by the higher force that controls them.
Many say that science, which is a practical tool, doesn’t agree with all this theory of negative presence. But why not, when it is practical that happiness, joy and togetherness brings peace and positive energy; sadness, anger and torture bring in negative energy. Newton’s 3rd law ;)

Well, so finally only light can destroy darkness and only positive energy can defeat negative energy. So, believe in everything. Nothing in this world is impossible. There is the god and then there is a devil. But ultimately, god only prevails.
The day kills the night. Everytime.

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Stranger!

It was yet another day in college. But this particular day was very gloomy. I wanted to bunk college this Monday wand join my uncle and aunt for a visit to Simhachalam. But I was pretty sure that I would end up spoiling their mood by getting bored myself. With a heavy heart and an irritated mind, I dragged myself to college. The bus journey as been the same as ever, helping me catch up with valuable sleep which I always keep losing however idle I remain the rest of the day. My misery multiplied manifold when I came to know that many of my friends were bunking today. Actually, it was not unexpected. This Monday was predicted to be an exceptionally dull day and no one wanted to be a part of it. Unwillingly, I choose to become a part of it. I went to class to find myself in class with 5 other guys. I wondered if my last hope of the day double crossed me. I immediately messaged Dheeraj to find out if he was coming. He replied in the positive, assuring me that I had company to drag out a boring day with classes from dawn till dusk. We took our places in the second bench, abandoning our routine places in the third bench. This was to ensure better camouflage in case the professor got nosy. The first period was automobile engineering. The coolest thing about this professor was, he never really bothered if students paid attention to whatever he prattled for an hour or two. His motto was, “Live, let live” ;) So, I thought we could play a few rounds of hangman. But Dheeraj proved a great disappointment and started doing record work. I was in the meanwhile searching for a means to pass time. I found the precise thing at that very moment. I removed the small metallic glistening object from my pocket. Its smooth black surface felt cold and it was quite heavy for its size. Voila, it was my cell phone. (Too much of hype, eh?)
I started poking my usual list of SMS buddies. To my misery, none of them responded. I was deeply hurt at this unexpected development. I got so pissed that, I put back the phone in my pocket and started listening to the lecture. As I was trying hard not to make the radial tire I was drawing into a shapeless amoeba, my phone vibrated violently inside my pocket sending the tremor waves all though my body. I hoped it was not some Vodafone shit with some bullshit offers trying to reduce my balance. The message was from an unknown number. It said,

“Pls give my attendance”

I was duly confused and sent the traditional reply to be sent in these situations.

“Who is this?”

I waited for a while wondering who it could possibly be. The reply arrived a few minutes later.

“Who is this?”
Now, this took me off guard. This was something illogical. I just received a message from an unknown number and without I getting to know who was disturbing me, the person who sent the message wanted to know who I was. And if he didn’t know me, how did he message me? I replied,

“Now, YOU are the one who messaged ME, asking ME to give YOUR attendance and YOU are asking ME who I am?”

This was actually going great. Getting a message from an unknown number in a boring class was a boon from heavens. ;) The reply that followed was even dumber than the previous one,

“I didnt send you any message; I think it is network prblem.”

Now, I’ve heard about missed calls but missed messages? Wow, now this was new! I copied the first message in received and sent it to the person informing what I got. The reply that I got after a few minutes was persuading.

“I didnt send that.anyway which network is dis?”

I replied,
“Mine is Vodafone. The same as yours.”

The reply that came next sent a wave of doubt within my head.

“your number is so nyc”

Dude! This got to be one of my friends. Doing time pass. This was pretty common in colleges. Prank messaging was one hell of a time pass for us. :D I started playing along.

“Oh, thanks a lot. Your number is also very nice.” (My number is 9160050090, the unknown number had a 55-00-33)

Meanwhile I put on the Sherlock Holmes cap and checked with Dheeraj if the number was on his phone. Negative. Nonetheless, I asked him to check if anyone was messaging in class. It was not difficult if it was indeed someone in class. The strength that day was only 31 out of 70. Mean while I got the next message.

“Wher r u frm?”

I replied,

“I’m from Vizag. What about you?”
Dheeraj was scrutinizing.

“also frm vizag”
There were four people messaging. It had to be one of them.

“You said attendance, which college?” I asked.

“MVGR college. u?”
A little more imagination could’ve made it much more interesting. ;)

“BVK College. Doing my B.A. You?”
There was only one person who could be doing it. The guy in the last bench. He was holding his phone and smiling into it. It had to be him.

“MCA
may i know your name?”

Dheeraj gave me a bizarre option, “Mutyala Rao”, improvising my idea, “Appa Rao”. Nah, too far fetched.

“Shankar rao. And your good name please?”

“Sunita”
Wonderful. The class was over and sir was taking attendance. Time to find out why I was the pick of the day for my friend.

As sir moved out of the class, I caught him on the way to the bathroom. I demanded if he was the one messaging me for the past hour and a half. He said he was not messaging anyone. True to his word his phone was not his and the number was also different. I then checked with one of my other friends, only to find out that I was messaging a stranger till now. Damn! So was that really a girl? I thought of the last set of messages before the end of the class.

“Why not replying?”

“Little busy”
At that point I was so sure it was the guy I thought it was.

“So did you enjoy talking to me?”

There was never a reply.

I felt deeply embarrassed and thought of messaging a sorry. But then I thought it would be useless. It could still be one of my friends with a new number. Or someone outside college. As of today, it still remains unknown. Personally I had no regrets, it had been an one and half hour of solid entertainment. I am not complaining.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

A Bright and shiny future!

This was my entry to the IIT Madras, Shaastra '09 online science fiction writing contest. Hope you enjoy reading my story. Please do leave comments and your views so that I can improvise my writing skills.
The topic was..
"Write a short story about a dystopian future where the government has banned laughter and has devices set up everywhere to detect it and punish those who indulge in it."


It was a late December evening. I was walking through the abandoned streets of Delhi, which were once part of a very busy tourism hub. As the cold wind swept past my face, I realized how cold it was. During the last few decades, if there was anything I lost, it was the power to feel. I lost the power of being human. In an age where the machines ruled the people, we had anything but the power to feel. We were just the machines needed to keep the machines running. As I reached home and saw its state, I felt moisture on my face. I didn’t want to cry but the tears came down involuntarily. I was crying without any emotion.
I was on my way to work, in a shuttle air bus. There were hundreds of others with me. All of us were modern slaves to the machines. Everyone around me wore rags and their eyes looked lifeless. The joys of being alive and human were long gone. No one spoke aboard. We simply exchanged glances to acknowledge that we had survived one more day of a miserable life which had no purpose. There were two sentries made of steel standing at the entries of the shuttle. The purpose of their existence was to make sure that none of us did anything human. The machines were frightened that humans were never to indulge in things that created emotions like laughter, anger and sorrow. After all, an emotional human being is all that it takes to destroy, or create anything. Such was the nature of human emotions. Such capacities were taken away from us. The countless electric shocks, tortures and beatings have taken away my power of feel anything. The steel guards had sensors embedded within them, which detected human emotions. Any rise in the level of adrenalin flowing in the blood, indicated an emotion. The detection of an emotion was followed by an automated electric shock and a few weeks in a torture chamber which was to make sure that never again such emotions were felt. I noticed a young man sitting towards the end of the shuttle. He was looking at the sentries. His face was livid and glowing with anger. We heard a faint beep and the next instant the lad was pinned to the ground and was being administered shock treatment. He was howling in pain for a few minutes. Later he was limp and motionless. He hung from his seat like the dead branch of a tree. I felt nothing, no pain, no sorrow. All I could feel was indifference. I felt nothing but emptiness within me. I lost human nature. So did the people along with me.
Another emotion that the machines feared and loathed was laughter. It indicated the presence of a healthy mind. A healthy human mind could achieve anything and everything. The machines didn’t want that to happen. If there were class of the human clan who still had the capacity to laugh, it was infants. In the early stages of the machine age, the detection systems led to mass massacres in hospitals where new births took place. The crying, the happiness, the laughter evoked the sensors of the robots to an all time high, like the scent of blood to sharks. The human race faced near extinction when, the machines sensed the need to humans to carry out essential tasks required for the survival of the machines. So, babies were fabricated in incubators. They were taught the principles of working through humans in controlled environments. The class rooms of teaching were strictly guarded so that they learnt nothing but what was required. Emotions were strictly prohibited in every form.
Eventually, humans formed secret societies in deep underground settlements where they could stay out of the coverage of the sensors. They trained select young men from various places in skills like decapitating the machines. They did occasional raids on the machine head quarters but they were always outnumbered and the missions were futile. Moreover, they didn’t have the support of their fellow humans who didn’t have enough courage to start a fight with the powerful machines.
As I returned home from work one night I found my small hut ransacked and overturned. It must’ve been one of those one of those routine search operations of the machines just to ensure that no one indulges in activities that threatened their existence. I didn’t feel anything as I looked at my destroyed home. It meant nothing to me. It was merely a place where I dragged out my nights when I was not working for the machines. I started walking aimlessly though the empty black streets away from the small settlement where we lived. I felt nothing as the cold wind constantly whipped my cold face. I didn’t shudder to the cold though I was wearing nothing but a torn sweater and a worn out jeans. As I kept walking, not realizing time or direction, I was suddenly seized by a brutal force from behind. It was like a metal gripper which was used mostly in torture chambers to hold you while they did shock treatment. It lifted me a few inches into the air and immediately a thick cable holding a laser pointer at one end came to my face and scanned my retina. It was followed by another sensor which ended up near my heart and it felt like it was recording my heart beat. The gripper put me down again and released its grip. Then, I saw a part of the ground moving away. I saw a flight of stairs that led inside the ground. I walked inside the tunnel without any purpose or anxiety. I discovered myself in an underground settlement. I saw guns, ammunition and equipment that were designed to decapitate the machines. One of the people there wearing a badge of some kind came to me and told me that they were planning a rescue operation. Their objective was to recover the babies fabricated by robots to help them make the human race win again. They dressed me up in an outfit and equipped me with a gun and a jammer which would help us destroy the central processors of the robots.
I started in one of the tanks along with five other men. We were on our way to the facility when we heard the machines approaching. They had sensed the strong waves of emotion and started attacking the tanks. The attack indicator in our tank sensed an approaching missile and we barely had time to make our escape. I landed on the forest floor outside. I saw men fighting robots with human valor and courage. But the machines which were designed to run by feeding on the human emotions grew more powerful with the growing rage in the men around them. I saw one machine come towards me with an electric ball glowering on one of its arms. I didn’t try to run or hide. It didn’t make any difference to me if I lived or died. I thought of my life and I felt nothing but the weary emptiness. The machine came to me stopped a few yards in front of me. The electric ball in its hand was flickering and it looked as if it was growing weaker. I walked to the machine and took the jammer from my pocket. I fixed it on the back of the head of the machine. It whirred for a while and then collapsed. One man who was watching me with amazement asked me how I had done it. Then for the first time in my life I felt an emotion. That emotion swept away all other emotions within me. The emotion told me that I had to fight. I had to survive. The instinct to survive swept away sadness, anger or rage. I asked him if I could find a machine which could multiply brain wave frequencies and make them spread over an area. He thought for a while and told me that they used frequency suppressors to make sure that their settlements remained safe from the attack of the machines. He told me that he could reverse the process and make it work as an enhancer. We ran to the nearest tank and sat inside. We drove to the cover of a huge canopy of trees to buy us some time.
The man worked for a while and said that it should work now. I told him to get out of the vehicle and protect the vehicle for as long as he could. He looked at me in the eye as if questioning why he should trust a stranger he never knew. I told him in a flat tone that, I could make us win the battle. The question was wiped out of his face and he went out nodding his head in my direction. I put on the equipment on my head. The sensors on the headset started buzzing. I looked at the display panel which showed me the optional frequencies I could set it to. I simply picked the highest and set it to that. The next thing I could feel was a buzzing inside my head. I couldn’t say if it was pain. I didn’t know if I was dying. All I could sense at that point of time was that, I needed to survive and help others do it. We couldn’t give up. The human race couldn’t succumb to the power of something they created for their own benefit. We fought the heat of the deserts, the freezing cold of the arctic blizzards and the deadliest of forests. The human instinct for survival outlasted everything beyond endurance.
By the time I opened my eyes, I was lying on the ground. I thought I was in heaven. The rising sun never looked so beautiful. Still, I didn’t feel emotion. The emptiness was all that I could sense. Then there were people around me they were anxious to see if I lived or perished. I slowly stood up and saw the machines lying around in heaps. It worked. The human instinct to survive outlasted the brutal force of metal.
Nature has thought me a new method to fight. I was the first of a new evolved species of humans. We were designed to destroy the machines that fed on human emotions. I felt a sense of purpose for the first time in my life. I was designed to kill without thinking, without experiencing emotions that made us vulnerable to the machines. Now, that I knew my purpose, I set out on a mission. A mission intended to bring us back into power. I set out into the world to find people like me. People designed by nature to keep us alive. I was sure of it now, because we had a weapon that the machines can never think of possessing. We can evolve. We can adapt. We can survive.

Friday, September 25, 2009

It's about how we talk!

What I'm gonna show you now is gonna be interesting. I'm sure most of you people can connect with this. Alright, I'm gonna show how a normal conversation between a guy and a girl on a chat service like Yahoo! starts and proceeds. I'm not sure if this will be exact pattern, but from what I've known it's mostly the same for anyone in India I'm pretty sure.
So.. Why wait.. Let's Log in!

Male: hey (Trying not to show his excitement too much!)

Female: heyyyy!!!! (Trying to show how much she wants to talk!)

Male: whats up? (The standard soup before dinner! :P)

Female: nm.. jus chattin.. wat abt you? (In case you're familiar with chat& girl lingo, nm stands for nothing much. Like it isn't obvious that you are chatting!)

Male: oh! me.. not much either (What do you think stupid.. I came online to talk with you!)

In the meanwhile girl tries to figure out a proper reply. But the male is anxious to get the conversation moving.

Female: kkkkk... wat else? (Wait! Have you said anything at all?)*duh*

Male: whats up in college? (The best line one can come up with in a boring situation)

Female: hmmmm.... (As if she's gonna tell you what she and her friends were talking in college! ;) ) nm.. da same routine! (Never seen a girl who types full words! :( )
wat abt u? (But then, she expects you to say something significant and interesting!)

Male: (Calculating the safest topic possible, never figures out anything it's either a total guy thing that comes to his mind, or something to do with another girl, which is not to be mentioned at this point of time! *safety first*) nothing much with me as well.. college sucks.. (But why!?!)

Female: ya (Disappointed because he didn't say anything interesting! ;) )

Male: (Realizing that she may get bored soon) saw any new movies?

Female: yeahhhh i saw maghadheera todayyy!!!(Extra letter signify more excitement and vigor! Not to mention the !!!!'s)

Male: (Visualizing the female lead...) yeah.. i saw it first day morning show (Of course, he'd bunk college for that!) charan rocks.. kajal was too good le..!

Female: yeahhh (Imagining the hero) charan was fab!!!! 2 gud!!

Male: (Best time pass topic over, now to get down to serious business) you were looking very good today in your white dress (Yeah sure dude!)

Female: (She is flattered, obviously! What do you expect?) reallllyyyyy??? (She wants you to compliment her again! :P)

Male: (Recognizes the need to repeat himself) yeah! seriously.. ("Seriously" was to add extra effect!)

Female: (satisfied) thanx!

Male: so what are your plans for the weekend? (Move one! Made now, since the girl is all mellow at the moment.)

Female: (The female antenna senses something coming. She is cautious now.) nm y? (screw the grammar, damn the sentence. Just tell me the idea.)

Male: (The moments here, his hand shivers a bit as he types. His mind is racing as he thinks about the best way to spill out his plan in the most pleasing way.) i was wondering if you could join me for a movie on sunday (You could've done it better, bro! But that's all he manages!)

Before I tell you how the female responds, I must tell you two alternate ends to this conversation.


ENDING A.. The girl is really interested and likes the guy
Female: umm.. i guess i cn.. i ll tell u 2moro (She likes to keep it skeptical, wouldn't want to ruin it by making herself too obvious! :P)
Male: (Sensing that the worst part is over) ok fine.. hey dad is calling me.. got to go.. (Mission accomplished. No more time to waste any more. Need to catch up with the cricket match)
Female: (Satisfied that he asked) yea.. i gotta go too! (What the hell, she is busy as well)
Male: bye
gn
sd
(Good Night, Sweet Dreams)
Female: byeeee
gn
sd


ENDING B Girl has something better on mind. She is not at all interested.
Female: owwww.. i m chooooo cholly i ve to go out wid mom to sum weddin.. maybe sum oder day (How sweet! She just wants to make sure that there will always be a next time)
Male: (Already asking the next on his list) too bad.. fine then see u.. (No point in wasting time in a "not- interested girl")
Female: byeee
gn
sd (The male has already logged out by then!)
LOL!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The all new Lingo!

It was one day in one of the boring classes that I was sitting absent mindedly, doodling some design in my notebook. The lecturer was ranting on about something which didn't seem to interest me. It was then, that I got an idea. Let's see how these words look when they are written the way they are pronounced. I started jotting down words from random conversations that I came across. The "spelling" is exactly the way its "S-P-E-L-T" :)
Resultant: Rejaltant
Anti Clockwise: Yanti clack wije
Example: Ejjample
Only: Vonly
Soory: Saaree
Listen: Lijan
Rock: Raak
Enjoy: Njay
Come on!: Cam An!
Instead: Yinastead
Torque: Taarq

I've also observed that colleges of a specific region have their own way of saying things. These are some of the phrases that we commonly use in our college.

If someone did something that made you feel bad: You say, "Hurt!"

If you did something that put you in a dangerous situation: "What a Pity!"

In case you became the laughing stock of the class: You are a, "Flower"

In case you got angry over something trifle, people will say, "Lite teesko"

In case you need to curse something that happened, You say, "Damn pitiful roses!" X(

These are just some of the few phrases that we use. There is a lot more slang terminology to college. The coolest thing about this lingo is that, once you start hearing these words around you, you can't help but using them yourself. Doesn't matter even if you were an American or an African, you will do nothing but fall for the charm of the Desi English Lingo. ;) So better don't become a "flower" and start njaaying talking the Desi tongue in case you are new to professional colleges. Otherwise you'll have to experience "Self-Pity" later on. Oh, that is feeling bad for yourself. :)
Keep raaking!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Introducing...

Each of my friends makes his royal entry into the class after I finish my routine. First comes, Chandramouli Daga, a.k.a Mouli (Future movie director, Automobile designer and movie researcher) he is lots of other things but these are the main qualities which I’d mention now. His entry is justified by an account of some movie that he’d seen the previous night. I pity myself, almost every time that I’ve never heard of the movies he talks about. Then it’s Dheeraj, a.k.a Dheeru (Noted dancer, Academician and the future of vibration making and analysis.) We greet each other in our customary language “Phononggg!!”(Confused to be insane by others ;) ). Next comes Pradyumna, a.k.a. Prady (Noted academician, Class topper, Writer, management specialist and love guru) more on this guy later. His entry is marked by the customary glance which suggests that he has some INTERESTING MATTER which would be shared as the day moves on. Next comes Pradeep a.k.a Topper or tops (Noted academician, avid lover of anything connected to Animax or Discovery, animal lover (Prady, don’t giggle!) and well-know conversation interpreter.) his entry is marked by an exchange of statements between him and Pradyumna (Later!). Next comes Abhishek a.k.a Abhi (Secretary, Noted human resource manager and poet) more on his poems and poetic moods later. His entry is signified by the expression of his feeling about the matter Prady referred to. After a few minutes, Dheeraj is ready for our early morning college tour. We take a suitable route through the campus which would give us the necessary stretching before the next few hours of classes. We come back to the class just a few minutes before the classes start.
Next, I should tell you about our seating arrangement. We sit in the row to the right of the three rows of benches in our class. Prady and Abhi take the third bench, with Prady always in the corner towards the window. His place of sitting signifies some of the troubles he faces everyday ;) more on that later. In the next bench it’s Pradeep, Dheeraj, Me and Mouli. Mouli sits towards the window directly behind Prady. (Why did I mention this?)
As I told you, we make one really hilarious gang. We do different kinds of activities during classes which are governed by factors like, evil coefficient of the lecturer, nature of the class and nature of the subject. Mostly, the most important factor which over powers all these factors is our mood at that particular point of time.
In my following posts, I’ll tell you people what we usually do in a particular class. Till then keep raaaking and njaaayyy!! I hope that this MATTER find post didn’t SET your mind! I hope you found this “Excellent, fantastic, and bombastic!” Aina “ento” emotion lo ededo type chesesa.. “Ardham kale!” :(( What a pity!

Wake up Sid!

“I know you are aware, it’s another damn day, today I’ll see you on the flipside”
Just as the line from a song by the band flipside suggests, it’s another day in my life that has started. I wake up from my corner bed. Looking like a gory villain from some cheap horror movie with red eyes and my hair in a total mess. It always begins with the same thought. “Man, could’ve slept a bit more.” Nevertheless, it’s started and it will get on. First thing I do, say hello to my computer. I switch on the monitor to ensure that the movie is safely downloading. I satisfy me that the connection speed is good and me more into the main hall. The scene there is also pretty much the same every day. My grandfather sitting in one corner sofa, blissfully sipping his coffee and immersed in the things going on in the country as reported by The Hindu. He tries not to get distracted by my sister who is almost, due to some reason, late to college. My mom keeps running around the house serving coffee, getting my sister ready and simultaneously cooking food for my lunch. Man, mom’s have wheels under their legs.
I consider if I should brush my teeth and then go for exercise or if I should exercise and brush my teeth. That is a dilemma which I never feel that I should feel. But it’s something that I end up feeling everyday (hope you don’t consider me insane ;) ) Next, I either brush or go upstairs to the set of three spare rooms’ upstairs where I hang out most of the time. I switch on my music system and connect my MP3 player. The familiar voices of Linkin’ Park screaming his guts out or the seducing voice of Britney Spears or the classical tones of Coldplay fill the room. I finish my quick exercise routine, which usually takes about half an hour. I rush downstairs to make sure that I’m on time for bath. Usually, I’m 5 to 10 minutes late of schedule.
Bath is a wonderful experience which washes down the grogginess of the previous night and the sweat of the past hour. I feel like a new human being after finishing my under-enjoyed shower. I offer a quick hello to god, who never has more than a minute or two in my very busy life ;) Dressing, breakfast and shutting down the computer. All these activities are take care of in the next fifteen minutes.
I grab an auto and rush to the bus stop. The auto journey is always preceded by five tense minutes, in which I always fear that I wouldn’t make it to the bus stop on time. Well, most of the time my tension is relieved when I see my friend Murthy in the sea of people in the bus stop. His presence gives me that assurance that I’ve made t on time. Congratulations!  My brief conversation with Murthy always begins with a curse to the sun god, for setting our heads and bodies on fire with the terrific heat. We face away from the sun rays trying to avoid the heat as much as we can. But we only succeed in producing huge harvests of sweat that take away the goodness of the morning’s bath. The buss arrives sometimes very soon, sometimes late. It’s as unpredictable as time itself, the time at which it comes (?)
The bus journey always means only one thing to me. Recovering the sleep time lost the previous night. I pull out my TUNGSTEN palmtop, open REAL PLAYER switch it to shuffle, and pop in my I RIVER headphones (after all we are Indians and we don’t give a damn about proper company combination's). Next, I listen to songs which I never paid a penny for. Downloaded from some blog or sharing sites. I drift into sleep somewhere around the second stanza of the third song (Note: - Distances in bus journey are measured in terms of songs durations.)
I wake up one turning prior to the entry of the college. The distance from here is about two full songs lasting five minutes each. (See what I mean?) The bus stops in the standard parking lot for buses and I get down after all the faculty and the females, who account for a huge chunk of population in our bus, get down. I stretch my cramped spine and get down. Taking in the tremendous heat of the sun, which happens to be more intense in our college (Duh!) I try to get over the pain of sitting with my legs folded with a quick walk from the bus stop to my department. I am obstructed from achieving my objective by groups of girls walking in front of me. Don’t know why but they always remind me of a herd of elephants. I cut across them till I find my own, free path to walk upon (too strong, eh?) My legs automatically take me to my class and my mouth gives out a programmed good morning to any faculty I encounter en route. I then reach class which is almost empty for a few people by the time I reach. I unburden myself of the weight on my shoulders and refresh myself in the toilet. I come back and sit under the fan for a while. This completes the traveling part of my road to college. :)

College Life!

Well well, it’s been a while since I’ve started doing active posting on my blog. But I never got a chance to tell you about what my college life is like. I’m absolutely sure that college days are the most enjoyed and cherished days of anybody’s life. So here I am to tell you about my college life. An average student with a hilariously funny gang which comprises of different people with different mind sets and individualities brought together by the beautiful phenomenon called “friendship”. So, buckle up! Join me on the ride to college.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Wish I could write like this!

Well, first when I started this blog I thought, this should be mine and only my works all the way. But then, there are so many good poems and stories online that, I cannot help but sharing them with all of you! :)
The following poem is one of the best comical poems i've come across in recent times. Really smart and witty. Too good!

WASHINGTON POST COMPETITION ASKED FOR A TWO-LINE RHYME WITH
THE MOST ROMANTIC FIRST LINE, BUT THELEAST ROMANTIC SECOND LINE


This is the winner:-

My darling, my lover, my beautiful wife,
Marrying you screwed up my life.

I see your face when I am dreaming.
That's why I always wake up screaming.

Kind, intelligent, loving and hot;
This describes everything you are not.

I thought that I could love no other --
that is until I met your brother.

Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet, and so are you.
But the roses are wilting, the violets are dead, the sugar bowl's empty and so is your head.

I want to feel your sweet embrace;
But don't take that paper bag off your face.

I love your smile, your face, and your eyes --
Damn, I'm good at telling lies!

My love, you take my breath away.
What have you stepped in to smell this way?

My feelings for you no words can tell,
Except for maybe “'Go to hell.”'

What inspired this amorous rhyme?
Two parts tequila, one part lime

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Novels and Films!

I happened to read this book Twilight recently. Considering that I read a good number of books ;) I was late in reading twilight. Though, the story of a human falling in love with a vampire was not that appealing to me. The other thing was that I had already seen the movie which was not exactly that gripping story wise or taking wise. But, as I started reading the book, I found that it was an easy and breezy read. A very entertaining book. I was really taken by the way the author portrayed the character of the narrator Isabella Swan. Her balancing problems, the way she gets obsessed with the character called Edward Cullen. It was all very good to read. The humor which the author created through the role of the girl was really good. But then I was left wondering one thing after I finished with the book. Why wasn't it that good when I saw it on screen? This reminded me of the few other movies that were made based on the books that I read. Angels and demons, One night @ call center, and the Harry Potter series. Almost each of the movies was a disappointment considering the scale on which the book stimulated my mind.

In the case of angels and demons the book itself was so big that it couldn't be made into a proper feature film in the first place. So, they cut out huge chunks of the book that had the vital part of the story. The major reason why this very successful book was not received that well as a movie is that, it failed to stimulate the same imagination it evoked in the mind of the person who read the book first.

In the case of a more local Indian book. One night@ call center by Chetan Bhagat, the characters were totally morphed and modified. With bad taking and unnecessary songs they made a mess out of a very beautiful modern Indian book.

The case of harry potter is pretty much like angels and demons. The whole series of books has such a huge set of characters and situations which are impossible to show on a screen in a span of a few hours. But, the reason for the huge success of this series of movies is that, they gave faces to the very well known characters of the book. For example, we can never imagine Harry Potter without Daniel Radcliffe.

So where it concludes is that, books can never create the same impact on screen. It is because, when you write, sky is the limit. Your imagination has no bounds. But when it comes to making movies, you have limits. You have a budget and a limited scope. Successful book adaptions are the ones which create the same environment in the mind of the person who read the book.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Violent Anger!

Well, let me share some of my childhood experiences with you guys. This particular incident happened when i was in my third standard. We had just moved into our current new house at that time. I was back home from school that evening. I was grim and dull as I had a very heavy cold and I scored very less in some unit test, if i remember well. So then, I came home and my mom gave me this cough syrup. That particular cough syrup was one of my favorites. It used to taste sweet and a little bit like a bubble gum. ;) I insisted my mom that she should give me and extra spoon since the cold was getting worse. She was reluctant but then she got irritated with my constant pestering and finally gave me my extra spoon. After that, I busied myself watching Swat Kats. In the meanwhile mom opened my bag and saw the unit test book and the miserable marks that I scored. So, like every parent she got furious and asked me to switch off the TV right when it was getting interesting. She started to scold me by explaining how I wasted time playing cricket and watching cartoons. I was kinda expecting this at school itself so, I put on the most convincing good boy expression and I kept listening to what she was saying.. Meanwhile, the aunt who stayed in the house beside mine came by. My mother didn't stop and was going on. This part, I didn't like. I got pissed and went into my room. I locked it and I locked all the windows. I started crying due to shame and embarrassment. I got angry and started throwing things in random directions. Clothes, chairs whatever I saw. It was then that my head started feeling heavy and I felt sleepy. I cuddled on the bed and slept off on a beautiful nap, which was made longer due to the cough syrup I took. It was some hours later that I sensed something poking me in the back of the head. I woke up startled. I saw that it was a small stick tied to another stick that was poking me. It came through the ceiling. I realized that my dozing off in a locked room caused a lot of panic. As I opened the door I saw no less that ten people form the neighborhood that gathered in the house. Everyone looked anxious and angry. I was told later that one the sounds caused panic and people started wondering if anything happened to me. As I came of the room after a royal nap, I was being cajoled and was being taken care of by my mom who was shouting at me a while ago. So much for my miserable marks. No one bothered about them anymore. ;)

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Who killed them?

I woke up this morning and was feeling lazy and unhappy for not being able to sleep more on a holiday. I picked up a Telugu daily and saw the front page expecting and looking at the obvious headlines with the pictures from the cremation ceremony of the demised Chief Minister Dr.Y.S. Rajshekar Reddy. It was not the number of people that attended the ceremony that shocked me but one more article that stated that 348 people died due to the shock caused by the death of YSR. More than 25 were suicides and the rest of them were heart attacks caused by pure shock. As i was reading the article I was wondering why so many people died due to the death of one person. Accepting that he was a great leader I was still wondering what created such a killing shock wave. The reason I could find reasonable was hype. The sensational hype created by the super hyped up telugu media. From the day he went missing, all news channels were broadcasting only one thing and the people saw only one thing. The CM IS MISSING. It was covered so much and created so much of tension that people were actually becoming hysteric. They were both hopeful and tense. And when it was confirmed finally after two days, that the chopper crashed and all of the people in the chopper died, people were just not able to digest the fact that he died. This initial blast killed many weak hearted people. If this was not enough they went on for one more day showing all the misery and even the family ritual of him being buried, which was supposed to be a private family affair. I could see my mom all vexed up and tired the evening he was confirmed to be died. It was due to the fact that she was watching TV all day. It is understood that it is not the mistake of the media that they are doing this to crave their own niche in this era where news channels are increasing at a dramatic pace. But this is one ill effect it shows on people which has been proved lots of times. Even when the Taj hotel in Mumbai was taken by terrorists. Its high time that the media stopped hyping every single incident to the state of tension just for the sake of TRP's. And is it not high time that the government put a lid on the alarming increase in the number of news channels? And the content they show itself doesn't look so healthy. This trend should change....

Friday, September 4, 2009

New Sunshine!

It was a Monday...
A shining summer day...
I was feeling really bright..
Oh boy, the nature around was a delight!

It was then I saw her walk away...
The girl who took my breath away..

Seeing her everyday..
Seriously, made my day!

Her smile, her hair and her lovely eyes...
Its on her lively face that they reside..

The first time I talked to her..
I knew that I could never forget her...

Her words were like rain in summer..
Damn, People could live on them forever..

The chatter, the laughter..
Imprinted in my memory forever...

We shall stay this way..
Till the day time pushes you away...

I may remain as a fragment of your memory gone and forgotten...
But those memories will never be forgotten!

Looking for you...

Looking for you...
Knowing that you would know my pain...
Assured that you'd remain...
No matter whatever may happen...

Feeling you by my side..
Knowing that there is someone in this world, who is by my side...

Knowing that you'd always be there...
To share my joy, my sorrow and my pain..
To be my shade in the thickest of rains...

Knowing for whatever length...
You'd always be my strength...

My lonely soul searches for you...
Please leave me a clue..
I need to find you..
Life is miserable without you...

My Poems!

Well, i've started to become a bit expressive these days. So as a result i'm writing poems to express my feelings. So i'm gonna present the first few poems which are rather like little rhymes. Hope you enjoy them. Let me tell you, its circumstances that make people emotional more than any person can. I've to say that its more that my circumstances make me write such things! :)

Day 5-- History and Adios!

We had little time the last day as we had to catch our plane back in the afternoon. We could visit one place in the morning as my bro was all fine by then. My uncle wanted to visit one place and it was National Museum, the biggest museum in India which has a range of artifacts spanning the Harrappa's to the art of the 20th century Indian kingdoms. We reached there at 9.00 AM half and hour before the opening time of the place. We didn't have time to be bored. The outside of the museum had various idols of gods depicted by different kings of different times. Some were more than 400 years old but they still held the sharpness of the features they were supposed to hold when they were actually made. I made this interesting observation that, none of the idols of Vishnu, Shiva or Rama had these six pack bodies. All of them were slenderly built which gave them a not-so-powerful look. As I was still wondering why, we entered the museum. The building was like a circle with innumerable galleries on each floor. The Harappan section was the most fascinating one. It took us to the first human civilization in our country.
I was seriously in a doubt if I wanted to just enjoy the artifacts or if i had to click pictures. I choose to do both ;) After exploring the Harappan civilization for a while we went through random art sections where, there was so much to see that we were purely lost and enjoying whatever came our way.
We saw random things like a South Indian Garuda statue, a scene of a British war, the origins of the Indian navy,
various swords and shields used by the various kingdoms etc. . All in all it was a fun visit, with lots of photographs. We then reached Delhi's domestic terminal.

This airport was easily the best terminal i've ever seen(considering that i've seen only our Vizag airport :P)

The place was clean and well maintained. I got the chance to access wi-fi on my bro's sleek itouch which was a real treat for me. Then we proceeded for check in where we had a problem. I was carrying a bottle of water from the Ganga, which I wanted to give to my grandmom back at my place. The security officer was in a fix, torn between security concern and sentiment. The water itself looked brown with the dirt from the river. He consulted his senior who said that he'd allow the water only if we tasted it to prove that it didn't contain any toxic like stuff. My uncle looked tensed and my bro, oh well, he just recovered from a bout of amebiosis. I took the water and took a sip. For a second I controlled the urge to acting as if I fainted from the water ;) anyways, the security person was satisfied and let us through. We had lunch on one of the Pizza Hut outlets. I got back in touch with my e-world using the wi-fi I had at my disposal. Soon it was time for boarding. The trip had been a good one and I had no complaints whatsoever! Good Bye Delhi! I wish to see you more in the future :)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Day 3 -- The streets, the shopping!

It was early evening that I woke up from the nightmarish ride that took the crap out of me. I was feeling better and refreshed. I was ready to go out and explore the city. But then my uncle and bro were still knocked out. So I got myself into the best clothes I could find ;) and went out. Now, I should tell you about this place called Karol Bagh where our hotel was located. The place is a huge shopping area. One of the most biggest and one of the most popular ones in Delhi. The whole place is like a huge 'H' with innumerable horizontal lines between the two highways on either side. I got to the end of the lane in which our hotel was situated. After reassuring myself that I remembered every possible landmark for the lane, I set out but still careful about not losing my way. It was a Thursday evening, and there were many enthusiastic shoppers moving about the streets. There were food joints in every other corner. But I decided to follow a pattern in the turns I took. So then, i took the fourth parallel road after the one with my hotel. This street was filled with shops selling all kinds of stuff one could think of. Clothes, Jewelery, Crockery, Pen Drives, Sweets, Flowers and some more stuff that i shouldn't really mention here ;) It was then that i spotted this mall called Vishal. Since I one of my objectives of this mission was to by some god clothes, I entered the mall. Man, the clothes were cheap in Delhi. They were cheap along with being very fashionable. I lost myself in the world of fabrics for about two hours. It was after I finished my shopping that I remembered that I had to pick some stuff for my sister also. I went back to the mall and went to the first floor that had girls clothes. I was distraught seeing the huge sea of colors in front of me. There were all possible forms of clothes that girls could wear maybe, without becoming models or something. So, I was just staring around stupidly, when I decided for help. I spotted this female who looked about the same height and dimensions as my sister to help me. Her name was Shruti. It was my first time talking with a Delhi female. She was extremely good looking with long black straightened hair with the inevitable highlights of dark brown scattered here and there. She was thin for sure. But then i thought she was too thin with too much of diet control. She was dressed in a blue jeans and a white shirt. She reminded me of one of those female reporters that we keep seeing on NDTV or CNN IBN. She was very helpful and helped me pick some good clothes for my sister. She told me about her university which was Delhi University where she was doing economics. We exchanged views on education here and where I live. After fifteen minutes, we shook hands and wished each other luck. Hands loaded with shopping bags I was searching for a place to fill my belly as I was famished with all that shopping and talking. I found this food joint ( I don't really remember the name..) I had a roll and a dahi puri. It was fundoo I must say. After some more street shopping, I went back to the hotel enjoying myself with the busy streets and the buzzing activity all around. My uncle and bro were still asleep by the time I went back. The time was like 8 PM or something. They managed to drag themselves out of the bed and we went out to have some food in McDonald's where I ate for the first time. We then did some more shopping for my bro and reached back to the hotel, thoroughly satisfied with what I did and what i saw ;)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The ENDless journey...

After the visit to the Ganga, I felt that my trip to Haridwar was not so worthless after all. After i came back to the hotel, I had some good food and slipped into the blanket. There was some movie coming on TV but the walk and the crowds and all that excitement drained the life force out of me. I was in deep slumber, dreaming about the shit load of work I had to do after I returned to Vizag, when my uncle interrupted my beautiful slumber. I woke up sleepy eyed. It took quite sometime for me to get back my surroundings into focus. Time was 3.00 AM. MY uncle was telling me something about getting to Delhi fast so that we could get my brother to a better hospital in case he didn't get better. I went, took a bath and dressed my self in a t-shirt and a short. The driver took sometime to get ready. So, 3.45 AM we said good bye to Haridwar and took to the roads. Again, the roads were uninhabited. The driver was zooming away as he was on roads very familiar to him. Roads on which he took thousands of tourists. As we were cruising at top speed, our journey was interrupted by a road block. The guard was looking sleepy was a bit irritated when the driver approached him to ask some information on what new route we had to take. He spilled out some random directions and identifications most of which I was not able to catch. But the driver looked convinced and confident as ever and was again zipping through the cold night ( didn't know how it was outside because of the AC. Brr!!) the night looked perfect as we passed on countless intersections, small villages and places that looked unaffected by time. It was beginning to took all comfortable. Then, we approached this junction which was blocked because a rock slide took place somewhere and it was too dangerous to go that way. We then entered this diversion which was a huge industrial settlement. I was hypnotized by the huge chimneys glittering in the neon lights of the street. The whole place was very well maintained with perfect roads and if it was not for the street signs, we would've definitely lost our way. It was here that our relatively inexperienced driver made a mistake. He took a wrong turn that took us to a mud road that passed though a small village. The road was built for people to walk and was not that helpful for our car which was groaning to pass through the innumerable pot holes on the road. After a while we convinced ourselves that we were lost. The time was about 5 o clock. We were desperate for help when this milkman boy popped out of nowhere. He guided us though the network of mud roads and then, soon we were back on the highway. He refused the money we gave him, saying that he was performing his moral responsibility. I looked at the boy who was about 15 years old, refusing the 150/- that my uncle offered him. I felt proud! My uncle was filled with admiration. The driver was shocked. The situation didn't get any better on the highway. We were still not sure about the route. As dawn approached, we were still passing through Uttarkhand. Nevertheless i was still taken by the beautiful surroundings we were passing through. Tall trees that grew for hundreds of years. The lush green fields and the occasional petrol bunks scattered here and there. The time was about 6 AM. My bro was still down with severe stomach ache. But, luckily the pills put him to sleep so he was not really aware of the long journey we were taking. At six, hunger pangs started giving ME a stomach ache. My uncle was reluctant to stop for breakfast. So, we stopped at this small store and i got myself a big bag of uncle chips, a pack of good day biscuits and a bottle of chilled slice! I was not complaining anymore. Just as we are hopeful that we were back on the correct road, there was a huge traffic jam at this place called sharanpur. The time was about nine in the morning. We took a huge detour. The driver did a smart move and asked a farmer sitting nearby about an alternative route. He suggested us a 50 KM road through a set of paddy fields. That part of the journey i can never forget for the rest of my life time. We just went on and on. I guess i saw half of rural UP. The sun was blazing so much that we were sweating in the AC.
We were beyond pain by that time. At 10.40 AM we saw a street sign suggesting that Delhi was 39 KM away.
We didn't have much time to rejoice. We entered the outskirts of Delhi at 11.25 AM. The midtown delhi traffic proved too much for our already about-to-break patience limits. There were traffic jams for every ten minutes. It was twelve by the time we reached our hotel. We were numb from the journey. We ate our lunch in silence and then i don't remember. It was a total blackout! I passed out! :P