Sunday, July 12, 2009


Over the past few weeks or so i've been discussing this blanket with mama. Aveera knitted one for herself so i thought i'd give mama the idea... give her something to do with her time as well as have a nice remembrance for myself at the end of it all. i gave her the dimensions and your pattern and so on. She asked me what colour and i said "maybe black and blue".. "no wait - black, grey and blue.. can you do three colours?".."no, then maybe just black and grey will be nice"... today i got an email reply from her: 'I've started work on the blanket... Dada bought 2 colours - beige & maroon"

It was quite funny... i had a chuckle about it...

Sunday, May 31, 2009

No, I'm not being lynched, thanks.

The past few days have seen a number of concerned inquiries about my wellbeing in Sydney, courtesy big news in the Indian media about attacks on Indians ("curry bashings" being the preferred phrase)

My opinion: there is, maybe, a small element of truth to the racist angle of these stories. But for the most part the attacks are "regular" muggings... robbery is the main objective and Indians in general (students in particular, perhaps) are considered soft targets. Which is not to say it isn't a problem; particularly in certain notorious neighbourhoods in Melbourne and Sydney. The Indian media has gone overboard (it's barely made the news here), as they do, but there's no reason for us to believe that anything's changed dramatically really... I have heard stories of Indians being mugged every now and then since I got here... there's not enough evidence to declare it a trend, let alone a worrying one. Australia in general continues to have relatively low rates of crime and violence. Having said that, it seems like the state machinery is taking it pretty seriously what with Dr. Singh having put a phone call through and all. Hmmm.. maybe some good will come out of the media's antics after all.

This morning's Herald had a pretty good article on another facet of the issue... the reaction to the reaction as it were. It made a lot of sense and is a view I'm more likely to subscribe to.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

There's life after travel...

... trouble is: it sucks. We haven't posted here since returning from South America. We got back with a spring in our stride, a twinkle in our eye, <---insert cliche here---> . Since then the dreariness of the rat race has returned to shroud life. We've been meaning to write about the trip - and we will - but for the moment we shall blame our silence on a combination of a borrowed PS2 and live cricket on free-to-air TV. And LOST. And a little Scrabulous. Anyways, having acknowledged the error of our ways it is time to move on... watch this space...

Currently reading: Emma, Jane Austen. Quite clever; it must have been years ahead of its time because the style still works; but the subject's very chick-flicky which can be a bit of a drag.
Near-term goal in life: To get a full driver's license... course study is on.
Other activities: The grappling with Spanish is, also, still on.
Travel on the horizon: going back to Bombay for Christmas; Melbourne in early August.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Dawn Chorus

Our setting is Clifton Gardens, a tiny and very picturesque non-beach on Sydney's North Shore. We are here at the odd hour of 5 AM. And there are at least 5 or 6 hundred others. Everyone's here for a Sydney Festival event. The Dawn Chorus is a series of performances by the Sydney Philharmonic Choir at four of Sydney's beaches at dawn. The scene is strikingly beautiful: the crowd sits facing the water, spread out on the sand in silence; there's a hint of colour on the horizon; the harmonies drift over - they're Latin-ish and compliment the view, the sound of lapping water, barely-awake gulls etc perfectly. All is at peace. And then the dawn breaks... and it's magic... the sky is nothing if not glorious. Everyone's locked into the experience... with the possible exception of the 13 yr old in the superman tee and red pants who preferred to curl up with eyes closed and ipod fixedly excluding him from the goings-on.

Admittedly things could have been better. Not realising how popular the event was, we landed up "only" 20 mins prior to commencement. Which means we couldn't quite latch onto the subtler pieces. We could've taken a creative leaf out of some of the others' books and got into the water to gently backstroke up to where the choir was bunched up. Or row (row, row?) our boat closer to the action. But given that I own neither a boat nor any ability to swim, maybe I'll just show up earlier next year.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

All my bags are bought, I'm ready to go.

A lot of water's flown under the proverbial bridge since the 28th of July when I first announced my intentions to join my cousin Macneil on a trip fashioned around the carnival in Brazil. Things have fallen into place and out of many painstaking hours of instant messaging, travel site trolling and brochure scanning was borne... an itinerary! Which takes us through Argentina, Brazil, Peru and Bolivia. In that order.

Details later. For now I'm in the middle of a bubble of excitement... one of those that periodically pop up through the quagmire that is 'the daily routine'... I bought my backpack for the trip! I dug up this deal on gumtree and am now the proud owner of a Black Wolf 75l backpack (with attachable daypack). It's not new, but Andrew (of FiveDock, NSW) was true to his ad and had taken great care of it. Or as much care as you can take of a backpack (with attachable daypack). For someone who's never seen - let alone owned - one of these at close quarters, I was appropriately blown away. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a work of art and a feat of engineering all rolled (often literally) into one. Note the efficient manner in which pockets miraculously appear for the storage of buckles and "stuff" that are not presesntly required. See the wonder of the roll-away waterproof covering. Marvel at the comfort provided by the cushy straps and the support by the dual spine-things. And don't even get me started on the attachable daypack!

As I serve this post up, there are 26 days, 13 hours and 5 minutes keeping me from my flight Buenos Aires... and I can't wait! If only just so I can swagger around with my Black Wolf.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Spring's here...

... which means I...

put away the heater, take out the garbage more frequently, wear fewer layers, struggle to walk to work in a suit, eat more salad (or at least give it the old college try), flip the clocks forward, stop wearing my beloved scarves, have to deal with cockroaches (bastards, they are!), drink more beer, wear my Redsox cap all the time (note to self: must wash before season gets underway), drink less red, have to pack up my sweaters, look forward to another birthday (or do I?), need to buy a fan, go to the beach more often, now hate dissipated laptop heat, leave a can of deo at work, throw open the windows at home (bring down the blinds at work), break out the shorts, can sit out on the balcony for a reasonable amount of time, anticipate a drop in my electric bills (why haven't I received one in 4 months, incidentally?), indulge in more afternoon drinking, consume more ice cream, roll out of bed less grudgingly, happily wear my thongs***, should buy more sunscreen (yes, brown folk need it too).

I *heart* spring!!!

*** Crucial, crucial note: Thongs in Australia refer to this, not this.

Monday, September 08, 2008

How cool is my phone? - ANSWERED

Apparently, not very. Well my phone is, but not Nokia’s SportsTracker. I took it out for a follow-up run two days after the first and was appalled at the results:

On Thursday, I took exactly the same route as I took on Tuesday except – for reasons I don’t want to get into (I WUSSED OUT, OK!) – I didn’t do the two laps around the football field that I did on the first run. So in effect, I ran about 700m less than earlier. SportsTracker though, begs to differ, insisting that I’ve run an additional 300m over my Tuesday run. Flattering as that is, it’s a ridiculous error of 1.0km (or 25%) over the initial 4.1km run! Holy Unacceptability, Batman!!!

My theory is the GPS system loses the satellite every once in a while and, in trying to get back on track, makes a series of dodgy assumptions. Or the app is just shit. Now there may be updates out there waiting to be downloaded or Nokia coder monkeys may be in their cellars hacking away at the problem as we type, but in present form… I’m putting SportsTracker to sleep.

Thursday's run of glory:

Sunday's piece of crap: