Moving this blog...

>> Tuesday, February 9, 2010

... to my own domain :) Yes, this blog is now moved to http://www.namrathaprabhu.com/blog. All the "why's" will be answered there :)
Keep visiting... :)

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Trip to Auli - Day 2

>> Friday, January 22, 2010

Contd from previous post "Trip to Auli - Day 1"


Neither of us realized the alarm go off at 4:00 AM and when we finally did get up, it was 8:30 AM..!! :-O

The only other option to reach Joshimath was to travel the 8 hours/300 kms by taxi. We knew it was going to be Rs. 3000 (as per our homework) two-way, as in we have to pay for the return journey as well. But it turned out to be Rs. 4000. We tried our bargaining skills with the taxi federation or whatever there, but to no avail and so we were put on an Ambassador car, our driver being a Akram. He later introduced himself to us as Vikram.

The views on the outskirts of Dehradun were good. It was very foggy as well.
Even at 10:30 AM, the visibility remained hampered.


There are a lot of camping sites on the way. There are lots of shops the locals have set up that offer camping, trekking and rafting. The camps looked inviting with tents and gazebo kind of things set up on the river side. The river itself was blue-green in color with white sands on the shores. With all that in India, who wants New Zealand n such ? :)


After crossing Rishikesh (about 50 kms from Dehradun city) the views get a little monotonous and boring, surrounded by humongous mountains on all sides. The river and mountains followed us the entire stretch.


The road was pathetic, very close to the Bangalore Mangalore Highway, you need to search for the road amidst the potholes. Our driver was good and used to such roads and hence the drive did not get uncomfortable. We stopped for lunch at Srinagar (not Kashmir's Srinagar, this is halfway to Joshimath). The food wasn't too good, or maybe we did not order the right things :P Anyway, after lunch we got the first glimpse of snow-capped mountains, a first for Ashwin, very far off in the horizon. The camera that came out then did not go back in until it was too dark for photography. I still cannot believe that he spent two hours when I dozed off doing nothing but clicking those monotonous mountains.


The drive through the mountains is unlike the ghats we had traveled earlier (i.e, ascending the mountain one way, descending the other). Instead we traversed the perimeter of mountain after mountain after mountain. Seven hours of the same thing.

We reached Joshimath at about 8:00 PM. We had our booking done at Hotel Dronagiri and the person in charge, Surendar was already waiting for us.


Looking through all the available options online we had settled for this one. We preferred to stay at
GMVN Resort, the log cabins looked so inviting. But on inquiring we found that the cabins are not rented during this time of the year. So the next option was Hotel Dronagiri. The room was spacious and the bathroom, clean. There was a heater but one needs to be within 30 cm radius to feel the heat. But I'd recommend Hotel Dronagiri for anyone going to Auli. The food is good, the room rent reasonable and the people friendly.


It was hard getting used to the temperature. Whatever we touched felt like ice - the walls, the door knob, the keys, the bed even. It was hard using the washroom - one
has to touch water :P

Going through the torture, we went down to have dinner and surprisingly the food was better than we expected. It was too cold to venture out for a stroll. With no streetlights it was too dark as well and so we decided to go back to our room.

The bed and blankets all felt like pieces of ice. Once you have slept in one place, be there. That is the only place that will be warm. Outside your perimeter, its all cold as ice :P With this knowledge and two thick quilts over us, we crashed.

End of Day 2.
To be continued...

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Trip to Auli - Day 1

The trip started on 9 Jan, 2010 at the vee hours of 4:00 AM. The hardest part of getting up so early and the next hardest part of giving directions to our house to a confused taxi driver tackled, we were all set to the airport. I had not expected the roads and the lightings to look so spectacular in the dark. It was better than Mumbai's Queens necklace :D

Reaching the airport (Bangalore International Airport) and checked in, had an expensive Idli/vada/sambar (Rs. 90) and roamed around the duty free shops till it was time to leave. The Go Indigo flight was scheduled to take off at 6:30 AM. The gates opened at 5:50 and by 6:15 we were tucked in nicely in the aircraft, though the leg space was a little cramped. We even got to see the sunrise on our flight and it was oh so beautiful.

Landed at Delhi (Indira Gandhi International Airport) by 9:00 AM. The outside temperature was 10 degrees. It was cold, tolerable and thick smoke was visible when people spoke :D

Our next destination was Dehradun. The train was at 3:30 in the afternoon and we spent our time at the airport till around noon. At noon we booked ourselves a taxi from the airport to take us to NDLS railway station. The drive took about half an hour and cost us Rs. 300. Had a good lunch at the railway station. The cleanliness and hygene at the railway hotel took me by surprise. The food was good too. When we were done, the announcement was made that our train is delayed by one and a half hours, that is, it would be at 5:00 PM. We passed time in the waiting room. We had our respective novels packed too, so the waiting wasn't very hard :D

The train did come on time but the departure was delayed by another hour. It was the first time we were travelling by AC chair car and the compartment as well as the 8-hour journey was good. Ate chowmein, paneer pakoda, and cutlets in the train. We reached Dehradun at 11:30 PM, a good two hours later than we should have, given the delay. Our booking was done at Hotel Siddarth which is a 5 minute walk from the railway station. The room is OK for a night's stay, the hot water being the only plus point of the hotel. There is only one bus that goes to Joshimath from Dehradun and it starts at 5:00 AM. We were happy to have done our homework well and the receptionist at Hotel Siddarth had the same thing to share. A good bath and half an hour later we were dozing off under thick blankets with the alarm set for 4:00 AM.

End of Day 1.
To be contd...

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Update on the get-together

>> Monday, January 4, 2010

The Prabhu family get together was a huge success, as in saw some new faces, met old ones n enjoyed. What surprised me more was that Ashwin took part in the games too. Usually he likes to sit n watch or if pulled into some work by his dad, he'd do that. But participating in something like this is so not like him. But it did make me happy that he did.

The program started with breakfast. After that the family tree was explained. Then all the families were introduced. One person from each family came up to the stage n introduced their family. A slideshow was played with pictures of family members. Those present there had to come forward and a pic was clicked.

After that there was a discussion whether the get together should be continued in the future, and if yes, how often it should be done - yearly, once in two/three years. The final conclusion I don't remember, I was too nervous about my upcoming dance performance.

Yeah, so the next program in line was the entertainment programs. There were 3 dance performances by kids, 3 by adults, one play and one karate show. I went for my make up along with MIL. It was really sweet of her to help me with the make up n stuff. Ashwin's cousins too helped me with my dress n make up. After that they went back to the audience n I sat waiting for my turn. Meanwhile 2 of the kids' dance was over. There was one more to go before mine. I was a nervous wreck, wanted to visit the loo so very much but the sight of it only made it worse. I wanted to puke. Thankfully, just then Ashwin came to the dressing room to check on me and I asked for water. That was only my 2nd glass of water for the day. My kidneys were about to blow when suddenly my name was announced. With hands/legs shaking I went to the stage n stood there without lookin at the audience, praying. Why wasn't the song starting...God... And then finally... 'Na re na re...' (the song was Barso re Megha from Guru; no this isn't the traditional dance I was planning on doing earlier. I was thinkin of doing Kaahe chhed from Devdas. Thank God, sense prevailed in me). I don't know what happened after this. I only remember that halfway through a few seconds of the song were broken n I picked up from the next second too... And after it was over people started to congratulate me on a performance well done. I was happy. It was only when I watched the video later that I felt "Aww... this sucks".

Note to self: Next time record a video BEFORE the performance so that all the mistakes are there for me to see n correct.

I was glad when it was over. And strangely, I did not feel the need to pee till after 6:30 in the evening.

So then I removed the extra make up and went back to the audience to watch the rest of the program. All the programs were nice n entertaining. After that it was lunch break. Food was good - Pulao, paneer curry, gobi manchurian, chilli papad (happolu), rice, rasam (saaru), some sweet (that sweet puri that u eat after pouring milk in the middle, go figure :P ) n curd.

After lunch the whole family was divided into four groups. A little cheating (hush now.. ;o) )n all four of us (MIL, Ashwin, Bharath n me) ended up in the same group. The quiz was quite easy n we were leading by quite a few points. It was sooo much fun. By the end of it my throat was sore shouting/screaming. Looked like no one could beat us. Then came the "flush". The quiz points would be retained n the points of other games would be added and the final winner team would get some prize. The very next game had us trailing :( Sudoku. Only one person completed it and she was from our closest rival team. After that though we won quite a few games, we never actually overtook them :( Housie-housie next. The winners got a 1 kilo packet of basmati rice... :D Nope, none of us won them.

The rest of the games were fun too. Some games for kids n then fire in the mountain rounds (whatever.. don't ask me the name), there came the couple rounds. There 2 -3 of them. No amount of coaxing could make my partner to take part. And after a while, after I had stopped, just like that he got up said, 'Let's go' :D He even agreed to have me tie him a pony (for a game). He had refused to have me do that to him even when we were alone n that he agreed for it to be done in public was just so surprising :) And not to mention, we won that game for our group :D But like I said our group came second :(

Oh, there was biskut rotti (yes, biskut) for evening tea somewhere in between.
After that we had to run home to pack our bags. We came back after changing for a quick dinner of rice, kolmbo n tendle talasani. All yummier than the lunch menu. Then it was time for our bus to Bangalore :(

But it was all so much fun... No complaints. :)

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Being ME...

>> Tuesday, December 22, 2009

I've taken the path of least resistance - IGNORE. There are people around me - toothless, shallow, fake. They do not have an opinion of their own. Their opinions are based on the need to impress others. But I am not one of them. I, being myself, am attracting their hatred. The new lot mixed with a new one, throwing attitudes, scoffing and throwing tantrums. Ever since the new lot's come in, they have chosen to ignore me. AND THIS IS GREAT. What I planned to do, happened on it's own. Ever since they came in I've felt an immense disliking for 3 people and as the days went by it only grew from strength to strength n turned into hatred. No, hatred wasn't n isn't in my character. The immense hatred only comes once in a while when such characters surface. These occasions are a rarity.

All these negative characters around me I choose to ignore and have been successful too. If my ignoring them is not harming anyone, is not hindering anyone, and most importantly I'm happier ignoring them I think I should continue doing it. My need n my choice is to be happy. If that also means selfish, so be it.

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Arrogance

>> Wednesday, December 2, 2009

While some people flaunt attitude on their shoulders, others carry arrogance around and there is only a very thin line dividing the two. While attitude is real, arrogance is not.

Let me out down a few situations so that you can decide for yourself what it can be classified into.

Mr. A calls another Mr. S and asks him the status of a feature development. S says it's done. A asks him to explain his solution. A disagrees. Says things like "If u can't do it, just tell me. At least don't waste yours and another's time." A few hours later, A calls S and shows his solution, plus boasts about it as how he simplified it and blah blah. A's solution is exactly the same as what S did earlier.

Then in one of our meetings one of the freshers comes up with his situation - his code has been overwritten by somebody and wants to know the reason how it could happen and how to avoid it in future. So a senior member, Ms.SK, says one reason it could have been due to "resolve using mine/theirs". Mr. A started off to say that is not how to do it. One should analyze the code and not simply resolve by using mine/theirs. What he said is right and neither did Ms. SK say that. What was wrong was the tone and decibel level that A used. That is not the way to talk to anybody and especially not in office.

Then today A calls Ms. N and almost blasts her (high decibel levels and high levels of rudeness) taking his own meaning for some bug and when he himself reads it properly after Ms. N asks him to and realizes his mistake, he grudgingly says sorry.

I would categorize all these behaviors by A as Arrogance. If he does not mend his ways Ms. N is going to give him a piece of her mind. It's not that she doesn't know to fight that she keeps silent, it's because she doesn't want to.

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All excited... :)

>> Friday, November 20, 2009

We are just three days away from our first wedding anniversary. December 4, 2008 was the day we tied the knot, officially ;) The day the word 'freedom' found a deeper meaning :)

It was my wish to go on a holiday every year during the time of our marriage. And so we are planning a trip to Auli, Uttaranchal in January next year. Though the initial plan was to go there during December, we had to postpone it to Jan to coincide with Ayush's wedding. That way, we could have our trip as well as attend his wedding at the same time. We were planning to visit Shimla/Mossourie earlier but after some Google (re)search, we settled for Munsyari. Further research saw us chucking that n finalizing on Auli. I've been to Haridwar, Badrinath, n Kedarnath before but have only seen snow caps on the distant mountains. This would be the first time I would touch snow. I'm all excited :)

We are also having a family get together (hubby's side) in December. I've been trapped into agreeing to give a dance performance. I was thinking of doing 'Prem ki naiyyan' from APKGK. But that had to be dropped for some reason. The song that I've taken up now is a classical one n THAT I haven't learnt. I'm lifting all the steps from somewhere n I'm feeling bad about it. For that n for the fact that I haven't learnt it and will be doing it like an experiment. Anyway I hope to do justice to it. I've 25 days to practice for that. Excited, nervous, everything.

Pray all goes well with everything :)

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