24 August 2007

Jones Fracture

Jones fracture is a fracture of the fifth metatarsal of the foot. The fifth metatarsal is at the base of the small toe, and the proximal end, where the Jones fracture occurs, is in the midportion of the foot.

Wondering…what happened to this woman…what makes her write about a fracture…after all I haven’t shown any inclination to medicine in any of pervious writings…

:-( I have been struck…I had a small accident…just twisted my foot and fell…
Doc looks at the X-ray…says Jones fracture, puts me in cast and smiles…I considered giving him a box (for thinking itz funny)…but refrained…I didn’t want a broken hand too…
I think he got a hint of my intentions…for with the same sweet smile he says..
Grounded for 1 week…no walking…
Next 3 weeks take it easy….
And if you don’t listen I shall keep you in hospital…

Me….sit still for 1 week…he must be crazy…I can’t sit still for an hour…

Today is my 6th day in the cast…and I am irritated and bugged and fed up and …and … at a loss of words to explain my frustration

The only upside of this whole situation is the color of the cast…a very pretty blue…
Now I know why they tell you to put your head between your knees on crash landings. You think you're going to kiss your ass good-bye.
~Terry Hanson

Chak de, Hockey and Welhams…

Last week I watched Chak de…brilliant movie…one which makes you laugh during the movie and keep you smiling long after…

SRK was good…really good…but the girls were better….
The characters were really sketched well…the girls came from diverse backgrounds …and believe me they did an exceptionally good job…. The Haryanvi (Komal Chautala) and the Punju (Balbir Kaur) were excellent… their language, actions, behaviour…

I had a friend in college…he used to say… generally Indian women are good looking but the women from Chandigarh are the best… they are really smart and good looking…seems like whoever sketched the team for this movie also believed that…

And then the scene where the Telugu goes to register for the training camp and the guy doing the registration says "Tamil aur Telugu mein kitna faraq hai?" …so matter of factly…The girl doesn’t take affront; but replies nonchantly "Utna hi, jitna Punjabi aur Bihari mein hai."…excellent one!!!

This movie reminded me of my hockey days in Welhams…

I can still hear the cheerleaders singing…

Rub a dub a dub…the Woodies in the tub…
We’ll rub them and we’ll scrub them and hang them on the line…
Oh we can beat the Woodies any old time!

(Woodies refers to Woodpeckers, one of the houses in Welhams...I was in Hoopoes..There was immense competition in Hockey between Woodies and Hoopoes)

Another one which i remember..
A has the brains
B has the looks
C has the sexy legs
To make Hoopoes win the game !!!

(In reality...A would be the one who comes 1st from the bottom in class
B would be the not so gud looking one
C would be the one with the thundering thighs...
but we all didnt mind...it was taken in true sportwomenship..)

19 August 2007

Salzburg – Austria – August 2006

We reached Salzburg after a bit of an adventure…from the Vienna airport we took a bus to the railway station…but got off at East Banhoff instead of West Banhoff (or was it the other way around???) … anyways a tram to the correct stop and train to Salzburg…Mozart, Sound of Music and of course the cafes…apple strudel and the world famous Sachertorte…the bittersweet chocolate cake from Cafe Sacher …

As soon as we walked out of the station there was a café…we had to stop there…I think that’s the only place I relished milk so much… The gal at the counter was so sweet…she was really excited to see us…the first thing she asks…INDIA?? And when we say yes…she gushes…I love Bollywood..Shah Rukh Khan and Rani Mukerjee…She tells us that she watches all his movies..they are dubbed in German …except the songs…WOW…
I really wanted to watch the dubbed version…however to go all the way to Austria and watch a Bollywood movie…my aunt would have beaten me up…

Neetu, our travel agent, had booked us in a small but very nice, quaint family run hotel. Hotel Lasserhof, inspite of a very convenient location in the city centre has a very quiet and tranquil environment. After a quick freshen up we decided to visit some of the surrounding alpine towns close to Salzburg…

Zell am See, located on the Lake Zeller See, is a picturesque little town…we took a leisurely stroll along the lakeside promenade … then sitting silently by the lake staring at the snow covered peaks in the background…My aunt just didn’t want to move from there…
But we were hungry….and the pavement cafes in the town centre were very inviting…

After getting something to eat we took a bus to Kaprun…the ride from Zell am See to Kaprun is beautiful… Kaprun is another charming alpine town …walking through the streets just enjoying the scenery …the wooden houses with bright flowers in pots hanging over the balconies…town was more like a garden in mid air…

The next day we planned to do the ‘Sound of Music tour’ … we had a pick up at 9:00 AM from the hotel…Peter, our guide was reallllllyy good…. At the end of the tour I couldn’t stop myself from telling him that he would make a better Maria than Julie Andrews… He spoke non stop from the beginning till the end…and not rubbish…he was very very entertaining….

The wonderful tour takes one through Salzburg and then the picturesque lake district… what breathtaking views of the landscape …and constant commentary by Peter as to which scene of the film was shot where… he would also pointed out the historical and architectural landmarks in the city … all this interspersed with his jokes….

The sites that we visited were the Leopoldskron Castle, the Trapp family home … the Leopoldskron Lake in the front of the castle is where the children fell whilst boating… The Hellbrunn Castle where the glass pavillion or gazebo was reconstructed in the gardens. Nonnberg Abbey is the oldest convent in the German speaking part of Europe. Maria was a novice there. The baron and Maria were married here in 1927. Some of the scenes for the movie were also shot here…

We had a shopping / souvenir buying stop at St.Gilgen and Lake Wolfgang …but I was too busy just appreciating this beautiful village that I had very little time for the shopping….

Tea break at Mondsee…the strudel is something to die for…so said Peter..and he was right… the best in the world…

Finally back to Salzburg to visit the Mirabell Gardens where Maria and the children were seen dancing around the statue of Pegasus, the winged horse, and throughout the gardens singing 'Do-Re-Mi'. Beautiful flowers, statues, fountain, palace combined with nice weather helped us relax…

From there we took a walk across the Salzach River to the so called old part of Salzburg… with its carefully preserved majestic Baroque architecture…

And to end the day…a Mozart concert at the Mirabell Gardens…good stuff…specially Pa-pa-pa-pa-Papagena….

18 August 2007

Children make you want to start life over.
~Muhammad Ali…

Every time I spend my time with children…I marvel at their innocence… they never seem to hold anything against you …

Bhargava (aged 3…I think) …will insist that I stay over at his place or spend some more time with him every time I visit their place …last time he even hid my purse so that I couldn’t go home… friends will say… u better just sneak off quietly but that is something I cannot do…so I make some excuse to go home… and a promise that I will visit again the next day…am ashamed to say it’s a promise which I have never kept…

But still the next time I visit, the excitement to see me is the same… and I wish I could always be a kid…

Reminds me of the theatrical adaptation of Peter Pan I saw as a kid in Delhi…with a very nice song…I won't grow up ..part of the lyrics reproduced below…

I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up
Not me,
Not I,
Not me!
So there!
Never gonna be a man,
I won't!
Like to see somebody try
And make me.
Anyone who wants to try
And make me turn into a man,
Catch me if you can.
I won't grow up.
Not a penny will I pinch.
I will never grow a mustache,
Or a fraction of an inch.
'Cause growing up is awfuller
Than all the awful things that ever were.

I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up,
No sir,
Not I,
Not me,
So there!

15 August 2007

Responsible Citizens???

A few days back I needed to avail the cab services provided by my company to go somewhere.

I found that the cab driver was driving really rash…at one point he jumped the manual signal …the traffic policeman is asking him to stop but he just ignored him blatantly…
Senior colleagues sitting in the cab saw this and had a good laugh…and started discussing how bus/cab drivers are rash and don’t care because they would be fined anyways…

Yours truly should have kept shut…but I just can’t tolerate this. I immediately took off saying that it was our duty as the cab users to insist that he drive carefully…after all if there is an accident we could also get hurt. Even if we report to the admin, it’s not going to work. It’s only the users of the cab that can stop this rash driving.

The looks I got said it all…Thank god this idiot is not a regular in our cab.

Educated people like us want the cab driver to be rash so that we can reach home 5 mins early…I am quite sure that is the maximum time difference this would make…

We all crib about the traffic situation in Bangalore…but where we can make a difference we don’t… so should we be complaining?

13 August 2007

Chacha Nehru vs. Superman

India’s 60th Independence Day is just around the corner. Celebrations galore…especially in schools across the country… my friends sons school being no exception

For the kiddies they are having a fancy dress competition... Samarth aged 4 and 1/2 came home really excited…
The conversation between mom and son after he has told her about the competition…

Mom: you can dress up as Gandhi ji or Chacha Nehru…
Samarth: Gandhi ji was “taklu” (bald!!!), I don’t want to be Gandhi ji.

Mom: OK, you can dress up as Chacha Nehru…
Samarth: Who is this Chacha Nehru? I don’t want to be Chacha, I want to become Superman.

Looks like Jawaharlal Nehru needs some publicity!!!

Mom: Chacha Nehru was a very great man…(does not let her complete)
Samarth: I don’t want to be Chacha…he must be an old man. I want to be Superman
Mom: He wasn’t an old man. He loved children and they would affectionately call him as Chacha Nehru. He used to give sweets and chocolates to the children.

She Googled and showed him some snaps of Chacha Nehru…

Samarth: So what, Santa Claus also gives sweets and chocolates to the children.
Mom: He was a great man. His birthday is celebrated as Children's Day.
Samarth: So what, its only a holiday.

He needs an Image makeover too!!!

I guess for the younger lot some schools declare Children’s day a holiday and only the older students celebrate the day in school :-(

Mom is quite helpless now. She calls her friends including me to help her convince him to dress up as Chacha Nehru. We think of some arguments but it’s difficult to explain to a 4yr old the significance of Independence and that he was the architect of the nation. Still we thought we should try…

Mom: You know the British ruled India and he helped India get independence from the British
Samarth: What do you mean by that?

Finally he seems to be coming around…at least he started showing some interest…

Mom: well… everyone had to listen to British people and had to work for them. We even had to pay lot of money to them. If you don’t listen to them, you would get beaten up…
Samarth: So they were bad people. Superman can kill them all.

Oops…looks like its not going to be sooooo easy after all…

Mom: they were not bad people…but…Chacha Nehru looked after all the people in India.
Samarth: So what, Superman looks after the whole of India and America…

Mom: It’s because of him that we have offices, schools in India. Papa goes to office and makes money and buys you so many things.

Not totally convinced...but finally he agreed.

That was last week. He went to school and found many children came dressed as Bhagat Singh, Subhash Chandra Bose so he was quite happy that he dressed up as Chacha Nehru. This week they have another party in school and he wants to go as Chacha Nehru…:-))

All is not lost still!!!
Kudos to Ganga (Samarth’s mother and all the other parents who managed to enlighten their kids and convince them to dress up as our national heros and not as one of the “chaddis over the pants” gang.

08 August 2007

On Blogging…

I came across a very interesting blog, which inspired me to write this one

I guess I was born upside down…for me it works the other way…when I am feeling low and depressed I feel like blogging…

Not only does it distract me but also if I decide to write about my travels it simply lifts my spirits. It’s like reliving the whole experience again…its fun digging up my notes, reading through the brochures that I collected during the trip…
And then someone has rightly said “ Like all great travellers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen.” …There will always be these vague recollections of some part of the trip … Obviously Google comes to the rescue there…

I’ve actually got addicted to blogging…thanks to a friend who introduced me to it only 3 months back…

Now I pray every night before going to bed… god don’t let me get the blogger’s block!!!


Anokhi means Unique… I know this 5 year old girl so aptly called Anokhi…she never ceases to amaze me with her talk, her ideas and most importantly her behavior…I could go on and on narrating her anecdotes…but there is one which has literally made me her fan…

We were supposed to go out for Lunch once and were waiting for her mom to return from work…she wanted to play Carom with me. The Carom board was lying behind the bed so she asked her dad to take it out for us…Dad says...anokhi…mom will be home soon and we will be going out…there is no point in getting the Carom board out…

What kind of a reaction would most of us expect at this time from a 5 year old…a tantrum...maybe some screeching and crying and sulking….But her reaction was mind blowing…she’s like … (in a very encouraging tone) dad…you can do this…you are a genius at getting the Carom board out…dad u r a genius* 5 times….
She left him no choice!!!

07 August 2007

Braemer Gathering - Sept 2004

I was lucky to be in Scotland in Sept …I got an opportunity to visit Scotland’s oldest and biggest highland gathering – the annual highland games in Braemer. It’s very popular and the Queen herself comes to take the salute here.

The bus ride from Aberdeen to Braemer has the most amazing scenery…it takes a lot to keep me silent…but that is just what the picturesque region did to me as I just eyeballed the spectacular Deeside scenery…native Scots pine and a variety of wildlife such as red squirrels and crossbills kept me engaged.

This drive is also known as the Royal Deeside as it follows the River Dee with some royal sights along the way, including the famous Balmoral Castle.

Passing through several pristine villages we finally reached our destination – Braemar… The whole place was dotted with good-looking men in skirts…the Scottish traditional kilts in green/blue/red-checked tartan…

Scots are a friendly lot and were more than happy to pose for photographs with us… One gentleman went to the extent of explaining in length the accessories like the Sporran and the headgear and the significance of the feather in his headgear.

Our photo session was cut short by the sound of the traditional pipes bands…The pipe bands are supposed to be the best and I have no doubt about that as I recall seeing them march down the road towards the field. It is known as the massing of the pipe bands because as many as 20 or more pipe bands will march and play together. The leader of the band – the Drum Major, carries a mace – a shoulder-high stick with large metal head - which at regular intervals he will toss up in the air and catch – without breaking a step

The play field is encircled by hills – one of the events is the Hill Race where the participants have to run up the hill and back – it is a unique climb as it is the only one in Scotland, which starts from the centre of a town.

There were these huge logs in the field – like telephone poles – I was just wondering what they were there for when I saw a man pick it up and toss it around – Yessss…that’s Caber throwing – a traditional feat of strength!!!

The day provided a perfect contrast – as the men showed off their strength with events like Caber throwing, throwing the hammer, the shot putt and tug-of-war, pretty Scottish girls continued with their highland dancing in the background.

A quick walk around the village and even quicker shopping… and then we rushed to get on to the last bus back to Aberdeen!!!

Photo courtesy: Sudip Saha

06 August 2007

Maldives – Feb 2006

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
-- Mark Twain

If I was asked to do one of those one word / one sentence associations for Maldives …I would say INFINITE shades of blue…

As the plane started its descent towards Male and I gazed out of the window, I sure was glad that we had finally chosen the day flight and not the night one…that there could be soooo many shades of blue in one area… from light blue to vibrant turquoise to a greenish blue…left me gobsmacked.

Maldives is made up some 1100+ coral islands of which only about 200 are inhabited. 87 are exclusive resort islands.
We were booked at the Taj Coral Reef Resort and well….Taj is Taj…we had this speedboat waiting for us with their staff to pamper us with scented wet towels, breakfast and the works…We were told that the resort is only 32 kilometres away from Male International airport, and can be reached by speed boat in an hour…but somehow the ride seemed to take forever…no doubts though it was a beautiful ride… pristine, tranquil blue expanse all around and the guessing games every time we came near an island... if that was the one..

We had a lagoon villa…built on stilts over the lagoon’s turquoise waters with private sun decks and stunning views of the ocean. From the private sundecks, a wooden ladder led directly to the water. Our own private bit of the ocean… So inviting … I just wanted to get into the water immediately…
And the water …it’s crystal clear… if you drop something I am sure standing in the water you would be able to see it easily…

I would get bread from the restaurant to feed to the fish…that is after taking permission from the hotel staff as Maldives is very strict about the environment and keeping it clean…obviously many countries can learn a lot from them!!! Considering it is soooo easy to just dump the garbage into the sea…no one does that… NO ONE…they are very particular about the garbage disposal.

Well…I would throw one piece of bread in the water and fish would swarm from all directions…and what colours…I am just at a loss of words. I have been to many aquariums but well… its different when they are in the ocean and you are right there next to them…I don’t think that I will ever enjoy an aquarium again after that experience…

It is said that if you have not visited the underwater of Maldives…then you have not been to Maldives. Submarine rides are available that take one to 120 feet below water to a coral reef and one gets to see some of the most exotic creatures in colorful aquamarine gardens.
There are 2 stops …the 1st one was at about 75ft beneath the surface… where we saw some really colourful corals and different types of reef fish. We were greeted by a school of blue and yellow-stripped Snappers, Lionfish and many more…names I cannot remember now :-( .
The next stop at 120 feet was another type of coral garden. There was this really big cave where we were really lucky to see a Giant Grouper :-)

At the resort every evening they would have Sting Ray feeding…massive Stingrays would come and one can feed them meat. There were some Italians on the resort…one of them would take the meat and let the Stingray come really close and take it from his hand!!!

Apart from that this was just one of those lazy holidays … soaking in the sun and enjoying the sea …doing just nothing…

My biggest regret from this trip…that I don’t dive….

05 August 2007

Just yesterday I was reminiscing about the Golden Temple… imagine my surprise when I opened the newspaper this morning to find that it made it to No 2 on the Seven Wonders of India :-))

(Seven wonders of India was an initiative by the Times of India to get its readers to vote for Seven Wonders from a showcase of 20. This was on the lines of the voting for the Seven Wonders of the World, albeit on a smaller scale. )

04 August 2007

Harmandir Sahib– Amritsar

One of the places that I like to visit again and again…

No matter how much turmoil is going in one’s mind, no matter how troubled one is or stressed out, one forgets everything… there is such a feeling of peacefulness all around…

And when I go with my mom she’ll make sure we are up at 4:00 AM to be their for the 1st prayers of the day…its inspirational…Every time I have thought…why cant I be more calm and less hyper all the time…
(Unfortunately the feeling goes away once I return to the hustle bustle of everyday life :-()

It’s soooooooo beautiful…the golden temple in the centre of the Sarovar ... the holy tank. It is believed by us that taking a dip in the Sarovar cures one of all illnesses…

As small kids my mom would take us there often, but my first memories are of a summer when I was about 12…maybe 13 yrs old. For 21 days, we went to the temple every morning at 4:00 AM, took our dip in the Sarovar, followed by doing a Parikrama - walking around the circumambulatory path which runs round the main temple. This then leads via a bridge to the ‘Har ki Paure’ (steps of God).
Somewhere in between the Parikrama is a tree – the Dukh Bhanjani Beri – Healer of Sorrows. It is believed that doing a short prayer here is sure to get you out of all your problems. My mom swears by it!!!
And finally eating a full bowl of the Karah Prasad… the Sacred sweet.

For non Sikhs who feel like visiting Harmandir Sahib, no worries. It is open to all. The Golden temple, unlike most other temples having only one gate for the entrance and exit, has 4 gates. The significance of this is that it is accessible to every person without any distinction of Caste, creed, sex and religion.

Hmmm… feel like going there right away…Its going to be nearly been 2 years since my last visit :-(

03 August 2007

Kewl Abbreviations

Came across these cool abbreviations

SWMBO ("she who must be obeyed")...thatz me !!

EBKAC ("error between keyboard and chair" ) LOL

02 August 2007


Close to Udupi in Karnataka is Maravanthe - on the tourist map for its beach.

I visited Maravanthe during 2 seasons and the difference is amazing. Once during the Monsoons and the 2nd time in winter - New Years Day to be precise.

For a short stretch we have the NH-17 running with the Arabian Sea on one side and the Sauparnika River on the other. It’s a unique site…a road running in between 2 water bodies.

Cruising along the highway during the Monsoons (August 2003) when we reached Maravanthe, there was no beach to be seen. The turbulent sea was in full fury, lashing against the barricades made of rocks, looking really dangerous. On the other side was the relatively calm river. We were just enjoying the contrast and it started drizzling … picture perfect

As if the above contrast was not enough, when I visited Maravanthe during the dry winter (Jan 2007) there was this endless unspoilt sandy beach on a clear day with the hot sun shining on our heads. The sea looked so gentle and very, very inviting.

Made me wonder, is this the same place that I visited some years back?
I travel a lot; I hate having my life disrupted by routine.
~Caskie Stinnett

Hmmm…my sentiments so aptly put.

01 August 2007

Time Tested Beauty Tips

Can we say wikipediaed like we say googled?

Was talking the other day to a friend and couldnot remember this name of a movie of Audrey Hepburn's ...wikipediaed and got that plus lots more...

Came across this poem "Time Tested Beauty Tips" by Levenson (which has become falsely attributed to Audrey Hepburn)

For attractive lips, speak words of kindness.
For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people.
For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry.
For beautiful hair, let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day.
For poise, walk with the knowledge you'll never walk alone.
People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; Never throw out anybody.
Remember, If you ever need a helping hand, you'll find one at the end of your arm.
As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.
The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides.
The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mole, but true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows, and the beauty of a woman with passing years only grows!