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Fitness Quotient!

July 7, 2010

“I will cycle for atleast half n hour today.”
“I will pakka do yoga tomorrow morning.”

Sounds similar??? 😀

I keep promising all this to myself. Every night and morning, I will keep postponing. Once in a while, I do follow what I say but then its once in a while!! I wonder is this my problem alone??? I wish not 😀 😀

But I remember when I ran majja run this marathon, I was elated to complete it. I was beaming with energy. But then.. that was a different story and when you are alone.. who runs? who jogs?? You just plan 😀 But when you are in a group.. you are so motivated 🙂

So, I thought.. thought and thought! And then ‘bulb’. Why not have a online space where we can share whatever that little bit we did for ourselves, to keep ourselves fit in a day 🙂 May be.. you can motivate others too 😀

And so I created a twitter list One more effort to keep self motivated and fit 😀 Do you think it will work??? No harm in trying na 🙂

Weekend-ulgence 1

July 3, 2010

Yes, it was Darshit’s idea to just go and relax and indulge and enjoy this weekend. We both had hectic weeks for a long long time now and I was ready for any kind of break. BUT when he told “Yercaud”, I didn’t give a welcoming nod to his suggestion! I thought….. paused….and then again thought spending money to visit the same place again?? “NO!”, I replied.

But he somehow convinced me.. thats not a tough thing anyways 🙂 And I was just happy to get off my office work! Yercaud is 3.5 to 4 hours drive from Bangalore. We planned to leave on Friday morning and return Sunday evening. As per Darshit’s plan, we would go to the best hotel in Yercaud, travel least, no sight seeing but just relax, rejuvenate and refresh self. I mean… I never had such trip to any place. (just relax????!!!!).

I got up Friday morning and with blurred vision saw clock striking 7! I mean.. we were supposed to leave at 7, didn’t we? I asked Darshit who was still lying like a statue next to me! I shook him up…. he moved a bit! I shouted.. its 7!!! He jumped out of bed. We were yet to pack our stuffs 😀 I started groping for bag and my clothes. But wait…. where is Darshit??? Oh god.. where is he??

I go to the next room to find him ransacking all his jholas (bags). “What are you searching for??”, I asked. “Searching for a good music CD.”, He replied with that childlike look. I didnt say a thing. I knew he knows it best. I got back and packed everything.

We left at 8:30 A.M. Not bad 🙂 Yes worse 😦 Its the start of peak rush hour… we had to fill the tank, check air pressure but first find a petrol bunk on our way. Grrrrrr……!! Why the hell, we got late?? I looked at Darshit. He pulled the CD case and gave it to me. “Relax, we are here to enjoy this weekend.” He replied and asked me to check the music CDs (which he found after emptying 10 bags all over my bed!!). I opened a CD case and jumped on my seat!! “Thup!” fell a bottle from behind, may be it also jumped in excitement. The CD case had one of those CDs which I had written almost 4 years back just before our marriage 🙂 And the first song started “Aur Ahista kijiye baatein……” yuhuuuuuuuu I was on a roll 🙂

I still wonder.. but that day, we didnt face much traffic and reached NH7 highway on time. Driving on roads to Yercaud is a sheer pleasure. The roads are of international standards and like a proud Indian… I clicked plenty of photos.



“Gori teri aankhein kahen..” started with resounding music and added its magical effect to our drive. After completing two hours on road, it was now my turn to take over the stearing wheel. Darshit was almost dozzing! (after all, he got up sooo early in the morning :P). “Dil ne tum ko chun liya hai….” and I started driving.

I should correct my statement here. The roads are not of international standards but you can find such roads only in our India. Wow! There were some amazing flowers on the dividers.  Pink, yellow, white, orange flowers…… touching my car as it past by them 🙂

“Tune o rangeele kaisa jadu kiya…..” and I was completely lost.  Wide roads, villages and mountains on the sides, flowers in the middle, songs of our choice and I felt dreamlike.  And I really started dreaming.. what if Darshit plucks one of this flower and offers me… I smiled and looked on the side. He was fast asleep!!!!!!!! I frowned and grumbled. I no longer liked those flowers touching my car.. I stopped music. I stopped dreaming. His head fell on my shoulder… he was still asleep. I smiled. I no longer wanted that flower 🙂

PS: Part 2 once I come back to Bangalore 🙂

Wordless Wednesday 2

June 30, 2010

Emergency in the History of India!

June 27, 2010

I love to read history. Rather I should say I love to feel it. When I went to Egypt, I could sense a connectedness with the people of that era. I touched the pyramid stone and felt I touched those people who made it possible.  Yeah yeah.. not soooo sane but I am just fascinated by it. 

And lately, I was really happy to own a book by Khushwant Singh. Co-incidence is that I picked up this book on 25h June (exactly 35 years after Emergency)!!

The book gives a firsthand insight into history as he was very close to events happening then.  It is a collection of essays and profiles and one of the essay explains the reasons for emergency in India on 25th June 1975.  Some secrets unveiled by Khushwant Singh at his  unadulterated best.

I know emergency has become synonym for obscenity considering the colossal impact it had on India.  But this book shows the reasons in different light. To quote few –


Emergency was started to curb the coercion and violence spreading like fire in the country. It was started with the sole intention to bring little peace in the riot vulnerable country.  And opposition parties were igniting people to avenge more with the hope that such conditions will dethrone Indira Gandhi from power!

Initial few days, emergency was well accepted as there were no strikes or hartals, schools and colleges re-opened, business picked up, buses and trains began to run on time. BUT the reason behind the disaster was the administration running emergency! Sanjay Gandhi along with his kitchen cabinet comprising of his wife (Menaka Gandhi and his mother in law), old family retainer Chacha, Navin Chawla, Kishan Chand (who later ended his life by jumping into well), Jagmohan, who was put in charge of clearing slums with ruthless zeal and two pretty women, Sanjay had an eye for pretty women.  Also he was more comfortable with his in-laws family than his own family!

For many months, this coterie ruled the country. Anyone who crossed their paths was promptly put behind bars.  There was not a squeak of protest. Emergency which was to restore peace and harmony in the country became a lethal weapon in the hands of  Sanjay and others.

Arbitary arrests, the ruthless way Jagmohan bulldozed slums in Delhi made people believe whatever they heard. Nobody verified the facts. Not everything which was spread (could have been by opposition) was true!!  Long before the Emergency was lifted, it had lost public support. The Emergency, which was well received when it was imposed, and even justified by a sage like Acharya Vinoba Bhave, was distored later to take out personal grudges!!

There can be other occasions when we need to bring our country back on track… but making sure we do not redo mistakes made in 1975-77! 

Many a times, I am tempted to ask.. could emergency have saved some lives in Gujarat riots????

I in India!

June 23, 2010

This battle is between I and We. I see a strong “I” in India but why is “We” looking so blurred!

Few months before, I went through a Lean training in Office (no no.. its not one of those weight losing trainings). Lean is a concept followed by many manufacturing industries and one of which is Toyota. In brief, lean reduces hierarchical structure and brings everyone in a team (mostly a team of 10). And this team is expected to deliver as a team. Either we sail through or we sink! And did you notice? Its WE and not I. There is a fundamental change here. Earlier also it was a team but still that I used to stand out in the team. But now.. it does not matter how well you perform! If the team does not achieve the desired targets, it does not matter how well you perform individually.

So here I was. A small “me” wondering:

“Will we be able to bring this fundamental change?”,
“Its a mindset change!”
“Its a change of role, you are no longer a lead but you are more of a support to the team.”

Though the Indian history does not very well support this belief.

The infamous famous battle between King Puru and Alexander the great exposed the frailities of the team. Lose of Kind Puru’s kingdom to Alexander the great can be attributed to no cohesion between the cavalry and the infantry. Elephants in the cavalry started trampling people in the infantry.

Coming little further…

Babur’s victories at Panipat and at Khanua (against the Rajputs) were partly a result of the same deficiencies!

And Indian Military is no exception…

Indian Military, there has been conflicts between generals. In 1962 Indo-Chinese war, the commander at Se-La confessed that “private animosities, personal weakness and in many cases lack of mutual confidence amoung the commanders.. led to disaster.”

Not very motivating examples of team work in the history. But I do hope to see some successful stories of teamwork in future.

I want to see the ‘We’ in India not only the ‘I’!

Wordless Wednesday – I

June 23, 2010

Weekend without E!

June 19, 2010

Bangalore and Electricity do not go together and especially on weekends! Grrrr…..!!! Needless to mention, we have inverter to cope up with it. But how long???

As usual, I got up thanking god its Saturday and I can sleep a lot lot more in the mornings! And was about to doze off when power went off. In my half awake state, I calmed myself on seeing the black inverter box next to my bed.  The fan was still on. Zzzzzz…..! But then after 3-4 hours, inverter’s battery drained off and me too! I just could not imagine my weekend start without electricity. I had some good plans to cook tasty food. Undeterred to give in, I decided I will continue with my plans as usual. And I am really happy now writing this piece which otherwise would not have been possible.

I could prepare the planned dhaba sytle food.. more details @

And unexpectedly, the evening (yes there was no electricity till evening) turned out beautiful.  We stayed on terrace full evening under slight drizzle with mild music and few books!  No electricity made it a perfect weekend evening.

Wow! First time, no complaints for electricity!

I just enjoyed.  And will not write more but rather share few pics which Darshit took.

Engineering Marvel!

June 17, 2010

I stayed in a small village with my mother, 2 sisters and a brother, till one day, me and my brother were called for the service of the King.  When we went, my sisters cried but my mother did not.  Unaware of the fact that we were seeing our family for the last time, we (me and my brother) followed the orders and went for the service of the King.

It took us 11 days and 11 nights to cover the longest river (Nile). We were taken to Giza – myself, my brother and a lot many able bodied men.  When we reached Giza, we were amazed to see a huge structure of limestone in the midst of nothing but desert and thousands of workers looking like ants and working like ants!  This is when I got to know.. I was going to be one more ant in the lot.

We started work in the quarry. Our task was to take the huge block of limestone from Quarry next to pyramid base. 

 There were thousands and thousands of people and every single person was important. Each one knew what they had to do and how important their task was. 

Our task was to spill water over the base when stone blocks were moved from quarry to pyramid base. There were others who had to pull the sledge and there was one person who made sure that people were in sync while pulling.  So they used to keep shouting.. hu ha hu.. hu ha hu…hu ha hu..

There were experts in cutting stones, chisel them and mark them. And there were experts to sharpen equipments to chisel the stones. And there were experts who build those equipments. And there were experts who got the raw materials. And there were experts……… the chain went on. It was extremely well distributed work.

I was also a part of this chain though I was not an expert… till one day.. Me and my brother were called to place stones to build pyramids. We were moved out of Quarry.  We got more responsibility and needless to say more work.  Me and my brother grew closer day by day. We were each other’s family. But one day, we were working to place a huge block of limestone and it slipped. I lost my brother in that accident. That incident shook me!

I started thinking.. what was I doing? Following orders of a king who wants to remain immortal sacrificing lives of other mortals!  Days passed, months passed and I was now moved to even higher roles. I immersed deep in work. I was one of the most senior members in the team working for almost 10 years now.  I used to guide the placement, angles of stones on the pyramid. And finally came the day, when I had to place THE stone on the head of the pyramid. It was exhilarating! Our 16 years of hardwork and sacrifices paid off.

There stood a HUGE pyramid built by 200 millions stones in the midst of the largest desert! An immortal monument which was going to create history for all the coming generations!

My name, Nacht, was also going to become immortal.

And it was my honor to be able to see, touch this magnificent and larger than life monument. I felt I touched those millions of people who made it possible.  An exemplary piece of teamwork!


Ravana – The Hero?

June 6, 2010

“A tall, dark and stout body, rumbling laughter, thick whiskers and dasmukha”

needs no introduction. The most dreaded ogre of the Indian mythological epic and every indian kid’s villian! You observed it correctly. I did not say every Indian’s villian. May be its not.

My 6 year old niece is fond of playing video games which personifies ravana as the villian and the ultimate target to win the game! I would not have thought of diving deep into Ravana’s life, had my niece not asked me on seeing Ravana movie’s trailors “Who is Ravana in this move?” She was expecting to see a dasmukha, dark and horrifying Rakshasa. I replied “This is new-age Ravana!”  And restrained myself from going into further details but will be writing now.

Ravana has been the “muse” for a long time to filmmakers, writers, gamers, cartonists and the list goes on.. 

Ray Garton, author of the Buffy series, says “The idea of using Hindu mythology in the book struck me when I saw a lot of figurines from Hindu mythology at a store. The variety of interpretations around Ravana fascinated me.  Hindu mythological characters can not be described good or bad, they are deep characters with layers of stories surrounding them!”

And I quite agree with him. The line between evil Ravana and good Ram was always little blurred to me!

Ravana was born to a great sage known as Vesamuni, and his wife, the daitya princess Kaikesi. Even though he was partly Brahmin and partly Rakshas, Rama praised Ravan as Mahabrahmin. Rama had to do Ashwamedha yagna as penance for killing a Brahmin (Brahmahatyadosha). 

 Ravana is described as a devout follower of Shiva, a great scholar, a capable ruler and a maestro of the Veena.

His description as a ten-headed person is a reference to him possessing a very thorough knowledge over the 4 Vedas and 6 Upanishads, which made him as powerful as 10 scholars.

There are many places where Ravana is worshipped. The fascination to understand this ogre has attracted many across the world. The recent viral launched on April Fool’s Day had Ravan abducting Rakhi Sawant which in the end resulted in Rakhi Sawant kidnapping Ravan 😉 Ravan has also acted in headache-relif ointment ads too. From the object of lampoon to the most evil ogre, Ravan has been alive in our lives from the beginining.

Mani Ratnam’s much awaited release ‘Ravana’ also underlines the statement ” When the lines dividing the good and the evil starts to blur, whose side will you take? When hate turns to love and good starts looking as evil which side will you battle for?”  And so the unending debate goes on………………………….

Run Run and … Run???

May 30, 2010

“What.. early morning on sunday… who will come?”

“Should I go, hmm.. I have paid 300 Rs for this.. dumbo!!”

These thoughts clouded my half slept brain on 10K Sunfeast event morning.

With the biggest (and the nosiest) yawn possible, I stretched myself on bed. Cribbed a little (shouldn’t say little), stared outside with the hope of seeing heavy thunderstorm and rain but despaired with the scene, slipped in the quilt again! After 15 minutes of slumberous thoughts, peeped out of quilt again and dragged my lazy body out of the bed. And……. I WAS LATE already! Started running.. unplanned warm up for the event. Still in the night wear, shook darshit up and told him “I am going”.  Typical “Me”.  He, without opening his eyes, said “Bye! All the best!” Typical “Him”. God! I was late.. I wanted him to drop me. I rushed to get ready. As per plan, darshit had to drop me to Auto Stand. But thanks to nonsensical thoughts in the morning.. he had to drop me till the start line!

And I was not the only dumbo this morning. There were 24,999 more along with me 😉 Frankly speaking, I was overwhelmed to see the aura of the event. Hordes and hordes of people everywhere, ranging from 3 feet to 6 feet and from 3 years to 60+ years. The energy and the exuberance in the air was contagious. Wow! I wanted to run. I darted in search of my friends. It was an uphill task searching for 2-3 people in this mad crowd. 10K runners had already started their sprint. I was fully geared up for my turn. Had somebody asked me that moment to run for 10K, I would have started hopping and running. Typical “Me” 😛

And here i was, waiting for the “Majja” run to start. Majja run was for 5.7Kms and was supposed to be for fun! I felt contended. I knew my limits (may be I did not). We waited for majja run to flag off and started running towards the route. I ran, ran and ran. Oh.. It was fun. Small children ran past me in their cute colorful dresses. There was fancily dressed crowd running, hopping and enjoying (and sometime itching) on the roads. Yes, it was quite sunny. I could have never imagined myself dressed in those animal fur attire. I kept on running and crossed 3km mark. So proud of achieving the first milestone, I started walking to catch breath and drink water which is available at each Km mark.  I could feel that my body was not so aligned with my thoughts. It was tired and wanted to sleep on this laze sunday morning. This is when i thought of my friend Brijesh who is the winner of last year’s ultra marathon. He once told me “when you run, try to keep your mind occupied with the surroundings. See the beauty in the nature around you”.  I immediately saw the tree next to me and the first thought that came was  “Go and sleep under it.” Oh God! NO! I was still walking, when a person on mike, cheering the runners , came very next to me and shouted “RUN”.  Fumbled for a second, I started running!

From the beginning, (now the beginning is just 1 week before the event), I decided that i will run in the event and not just walk as most of them do.  And strangely, on my way to finish line, my body was finally warmed up and I wanted to run and run more. But.. I reached the finish line! I was beaming with joy. And surprisingly, really charged up! I met my friends and shared my joy 🙂 I always wondered.. how can one run aimlessly? But now, I realized the excitement of finishing the run.

We walked back home. Yes.. we walked atleast 2 Kms back. I did not feel like stopping and therefore called my friends to home for lunch and prepared pasta. Realized later, may be i did not know my limits. And ofcourse, pasta tasted the yummiest that day 😛