Victoria’s Secret Angels

FeaturedVictoria’s Secret Angels

Angels – God’s gift to the Mother Earth. I am not referring to Humans here.(gotcha!) I am talking about Animals, the butchered wives of the world – mistreated, poached and at times demonized.

Victoria’s Angels – The Forgotten heroes of Mumbai.

Our city, Mumbai has been blessed with only 1 such house for our secret angels. It goes by the name of Victoria. Victoria Gardens aka Ranichi Bagh aka Brihanmumbai Mahanagar Palika Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan commonly (read rarely) called Byculla Zoo.

Before the critics jump the gun to justify the obsolescence of this place, I concede the fact that Government authorities, environmentalists, animal rights activists and us, citizens have defeated ourselves. We are responsible for the pitiable condition of the animals in the only zoo of our city.

Yes, a much-needed face-lift is on the cards. Hopefully, once the development is completed, our zoo flourishes into an excellent hub of flora and fauna.

Wishful thinking aside, I paid visit to Byculla zoo to peep into the biosphere of Mumbai and boy it wasn’t as bad as some reviews on the internet crafted.

We were greeted by security personnel who stopped us from barging in the zoo with tiffins(which I mistakenly carried). I was asked to finish eating it and only then allowed entry. (Zoo +1)

As we set foot inside the zoo, the chirping of birds and frenetic movement of monkeys was palpable. We toured most part of the zoo and came across following exhibits –

emu.jpg

Emu

In one of the exhibits, we found a surprising species – the Emu. Popularly mistaken as Black Ostrich (some of the visitors actually coined that term!) This black colored giant sized bird saw many visitors flocking towards its exhibit. Many of us clicked photographs of zookeeper feeding them and cleaning their shed.

hippo

Hippopotamus

I was particularly amazed by Hippopotamus amphibius. The third-largest type of land mammal lived true to its name. We saw 4 of these mammals in 2 different exhibits. “River horse” in Greek, makes real sense given that we saw 2 of them literally dozing inside the water, reminding us of the standing up sleep pattern of horses. Those 2 hippos were 95% submerged/floating in water, with only some part of back peeping outside. For more than 10 minutes, we were wondering as to how do these Hippopotamidae breathe! Best sight was of the baby hippo lumbering across her mother (I guess) and leaning towards her while eating grass. Arguably, the best exhibit in the zoo!

neelgai

Horses, well, not really.  Blue bull or Nilgai

One of the first exhibits any visitor will see, close to the zoo’s entrance. Prima facie, it looks like a horse given the mane, tail and overall physical structure. By no means is it blue in color, (not even a blue tinge / shade)! And yes, although it is a bull – historical facts support my misconception of it being a horse. During Mughal emperor Aurangzeb‘s reign (1658–1707) of India, the nilgai was known by the name nilghor (“nil” for “blue” and “ghor” for “horse”). [Padhi, S.; Panigrahi, G.K.; Panda, S. (2004). The Wild Animals of India. Delhi: Biotech Books. pp. 26–7. ISBN 81-7622-106-6.]

Parrots

Different types of parrots (names of which I fail to recount) with colorful wings, different shades (grey, green, blue) and also of different sizes (from tiny, fist-sized ones to larger wingspan ones). The chirping sound was a refreshing experience. Ironically, while we were gazing at these birds trapped / shackled in the cages, a crow flew over us as if to flaunt its freedom, a perquisite very few birds can enjoy.

elephant

Indian elephant

This exhibit attracted foreigners who accompanied us. The Elephas maximus seemed to have caught attention of the South-east Asians. Both the elephants were being attended by the zookeepers and were far away from the fence. Due to paucity of  time, we had to bid them adieu.

python

Python

We geared up for a fascinating and thrilling encounter with Python molurus aka Indian python. With an adrenaline rush, we stormed the exhibit to witness a lukewarm response. This reptile, belonging to the family of non-venomous snakes, was apparently sleeping in the water tub, untouched and indifferent. While we were imagining the hissing or rattling, in reality there was absolutely no movement whatsoever. To our surprise, a bunch of kids tried teasing the Pythonidae (the actual name) by pelting a stone. The serpent didn’t move one bit. We reported the kids action to the authorities in order to prevent repetition of such an incident. As boredom settled thanks to the unconcerned Mr.reptile, we left the exhibit disappointed.

Apart from the above, we met monkeys, flamingos, peacocks, black bucks, Sambhar and spotted deer.

Friends we couldn’t meet –

  1. Humboldt Penguins – well we couldn’t get to see them. Actually, the main reason why Byculla Zoo came into the limelight was the arrival of unexpected guests – the acquatic lifeless birds from Southern Hemisphere. However, due to administrative reasons, the exhibit of South American penguins was inaccessible.
  2. Bear – a mountain-esque layout distinctly spans across the Bear exhibit. However, the authorities explained that the presence of bear can be found few and far in between. Most of the times, it lies safely inside the mound and hence the enthusiasts and visitors can’t greet and meet the carnivore.
  3. Crocodile – after minutes of croc-searching near lakes, ponds and different exhibits, we found no crocodile! Thus our wish of saying – “See you later, alligator” remained incomplete and unfulfilled. (yes, I know alligators and crocodiles are two different creatures altogether, but who cares? – both won’t understand our language!)
  4. Hyenas, and now absent Lion (last one lioness Jimmy died in 2014), Tigers (till 2005)

Anti-Penguin JibeScreenshot from 2017-03-11 18-15-11Screenshot from 2017-03-11 14-58-34

Dr. Bhau Daji Lad museum

museum

Ironically, the exit of the zoo looked much more majestic and attractive than the entrance. Arches of the exit gate, the architectural style was really fascinating. After the zoo, we visited the museum which was typical of any such museum. The artefacts, instruments, utensils made of gold, copper, wood – descriptions were illuminating. One new find for me was the ancient Indian card game by the name – Ganjifa.

Overall, a decent 3-4hr outing at a location nested inside the hustle and bustle of the city that never sleeps.

To the city that never stops surprising!

Trip Time – 8:15 am  – 2pm

Date – 11th March, 2017

Trip Cost – Travel Cost + 5 (Zoo entry fee) + 10 (Museum entry fee)

Travel – Via Train

Closest station on Central Railway Line – Byculla (bang opposite)

Closest station on Western Railway Line – Mahalaxmi (distance-wise)

Sources

  1. https://nearfox.com/mumbai/jijamata-udyan/#comment-864
  2. https://www.triphobo.com/places/mumbai-india/jijamata-udyan-zoo
  3. http://www.mumbai77.com/city/1011/attractions/mumbai-zoo/

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The 14th Tape

The 14th Tape

13 Reasons. 13 People. Enough for Hannah Baker, a 17-year-old, to cut the race short and end her life. A nerve wracking 13 episode Netflix series that has left me numb.

All it took was the circle of her school life – the reticent Clay Jensen, the gay Courtney, Tyler – the stalker, Ryan – the arrogant poet, weak-hearted Zack, coward Sheri, power-hungry Marcus, first-love Justin, the frenemies Alex and Jessica, the helpless school counselor Mr.Porter and who-can-forget the inhuman Bryce. The gripping story took a turn for the worse when Clay recorded the 14th and the final tape – the one where the perpetrator owns up for his wrongdoing unaware of the consequences he is about to face.

Hannah gave Life multiple chances to prove her wrong, but it proved her time and time again that her absence was worth more than her presence. The walls between Life and Death are unsurmountable and daunting. But it took her just 12 months for cracks to develop and the wall to finally collapse. Just like an eraser rubbing the faint line drawn on paper, the blade ran with similar ease across the vein.

No matter how hard she tried to resolve, fight, confront or run away from the issues, the rut continued. Her words aptly summarized the need for all of us to work on the way we build our relationships.

Some of you cared, but none of you cared enough. And neither did I.

Takeaways –

  • Social media (Facebook, Instagram) has made us a society of stalkers. On most occasions, it provides fodder for discussion. However, one can’t deny the serious repercussions caused when humans turn into devils and rattle the lives of the innocent ones.
  • Irony of college-life – “Popular kids are always mean. That’s how they get popular!”
  • Everybody wants to talk nobody wants to do anything. It reminds me of the age-old adage – “After all is said and done, a lot is said but very little gets done.”
  • It takes a tragedy to remind us of the importance of safety. Unfortunately, in this competitive rapid-fire world, the news gets stale quicker than food. Rape begets rape. Tragedy begets another tragedy. It’s an endless whirlwind after-all.
  • Casualties, Condemnation, Legislation, Casualties – the vicious circle is inescapable. Lives after lives, stories over stories – they keep on piling. Yet, the history gets rewritten again and again.

Sandhan valley – O really?

Sandhan valley – O really?

Itinerary

Day 1 : 14/01/2017

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus to Kasara via train 

We boarded the train at midnight. It was a perfect time for us trekkers to socialize and to know each other. One of the major highlights of the trek for me personally – Diversity.

Location-wise – Not just from Mumbai Suburbs, Vashi, to Gujarat.

Profession-wise – Police officer, Chartered Accountant, students pursuing Architecture, Law, Computer Science, Psychology, Literature.

All in all, the start to the trek itself was refreshing, away from the mundane life, peers and social circle.

Kasara station – Samrad village via Jeep 

3 AM ride in the Jeep, navigating the Ghats and light-less roads was some thrill!

I was introduced to Anup, one of our specially-abled friends. What ensued was – 2 days of epic banter! Anup was a livewire. Fully expressive, continuously pumped up and his gestures and emotions did the talking. We couldn’t even recognize the difference between us and them. Interactions with Anup and Yadnesh made me realize –

“To such people, even if you give them 1000 reasons to cry, they’ll show you the one reason to smile and be happy about”

sandhan

Base village – Sandhan Valley 8:30

Walking towards the Sandhan valley – we were briefed by Vitthal Awari sir (Trek Instructor) about the course of action and few instructions.

At first, it was all about setting the right foot on the right stone with right position. Simplest way forward was to follow the immediate person ahead of you. However the real fun was to explore on your own.

Stones.. at times.. play real good tricks..

What might look as an easy firm landing ends up miserably bad due to wrong judgement. That error gets introduced either due to soil beneath causing it to slip or due to awkward landing of foot.

“Plant your foot and plant it well..No half measures..”

After the initial hiccups, it was about time we got another adventure. And bamm.. we had this water body in front of us between the valley. The only way to navigate through it was through the water body.

As is the case with any mirage or huge mountain – “Appearances are mighty deceptive!”

What we guaged as knee deep water ended up till our throats. Imagine what happens to 5feet ladies n gentlemen! Deplorable sight!

And it’s not just your 60 kg. body that has to be transported alone, you have your luggage to cater to as well!

Rucksack which for most times is a savior turns into an obstacle and hindrance!

watertry

Maintaining balance in the water, being aware of the biting stones underneath your feet, and firmly holding your bag above – It was all worth the effort. As we reached the middle portion, we were embraced by a spectacular view. Nature at its best! As we started the descent, I got to do rappelling not once but 3 times.

To top it off I was dispatched as the first one to do from our group!

Harness and ropes.. Certainly felt like – Living the Life on edge!

(Farfetching it..although at first it looks daunting .. it’s absolutely safe in truth )

chairapel

“Keep your knees straight!”

“Stand firm!”

“Don’t push yourself towards the rock!”

“Hold the rope with left hand and use the right one to push yourself down!”

Chants kept ringing. Drama continued till 5 in the evening as we finally bid adieu to the rocks and the valley.

Camping – Night stay

Upon reaching the campsite, we felt a sense of joy and triumph of safely tackling the challenges presented to us by Mother Nature. Just like after a mammoth 200 run stand by a test cricket batsman, we enjoyed nice chilled ice bath. A small pond nearby was our makeshift – bathtub. We swam to our hearts content (only 15 minutes thanks to super exhaustion and dehydration). Post the super relaxing swim, we built our own tents and had early dinner (7pm). After which, we sang to our hearts content in the company of bonfire. Dozed off to sleep by 9:30pm. (A rarity I must admit)

Day 2: 15/01/2017

Sandhan Valley Campsite – Asangaon – Dadar

Woke up to the unpleasant chattering caused by alarms and began our last lap.

One of our fellow trekkers – super-experienced Police Inspector – Mr.Kadam gave all of us handy tips and instructions for Safety and Security. For e.g. – How to save yourself from Thieves, Robbers, troublesome Rickshaw/Taxi drivers? Especially for women – Using dupatta, Holding the collar to choke him, Using kitchenware for saving your own lives, etc.

lecture

From the camping site we walked through forests and barren land for 3 hours to reach a village near Asangaon. Staple diet – Rice bhakari, mix vegetable (brinjal,potato,beans). Cherry on the cake moment – playing cricket with young Turks for good chunk of an hour! As we left the village in a jeep to reach Asangaon station, our songs continued while we relived all the amazing moments throughout the trek.

The banter triggered on most occasions by Anup and Yadnesh

The tussle for winning coveted prize Ladoos

And most importantly Scenic beauty of Sandhan Valley..

Difficulty level – Moderate

Do’s

  1. Follow the leader
  2. Better to go through a trekking group (especially if you are a novice)
  3. Carry Light-weight rucksack with Water-bottle, Sweater, Torch

Don’t

  1. Get high (already its taxing your body a lot)
  2. Smoke in the valley (It destroys the sanctity of place, nature besides unsettling the honey bees tormenting the other fellow trekkers)
  3. For God’s sake litter that abode
  4. Expect network / service

Special thanks to Him Sahyadri Trekkers.

To the Good times! To one hell of a trek!

groupeveryone

 

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Life’s review or Life in a review?

Life’s review or Life in a review?

As I sit back, sipping a cup of coffee, watching John fly to London, it dawns upon me – “What a roller-coaster ride it has been for last 3 days…”

As I take stock of events that have transpired ever since their VISA application process began(H1B Visa stamping), I come to realize –

May it be India or Uncle Sam or any other nation, administrative procedures can be clumsy at times. And by clumsy – I mean they can represent a gamut of possibilities – red tape ridden, inconsistent, sloppy, shoddy, incomprehensible, non-transparent, slow and at times – downright pathetic.

H1B visa stamping in the passport is needed for a foreign national to enter/re-enter the United States as an H1B worker.  If you currently hold H1B work visa, you may need to get the re-stamping upon the extension of your expired visa. And here’s what happened with their H1B re-stamping for returning to the States.

Clock struck 2pm and we were busy chit-chatting, when John checked for his application status and that triggered the meltdown.

2 words – it just took 2 words for a whirlwind of thoughts (mostly pessimistic) to overwhelm our mind.

Administrative Processing

2017-01-07-photo-00000438

Google search of these 2 words and I learn’t –

Google is not always right

and

Google search can mislead

At times your seemingly correct search can in reality turn out to be incomplete and hence misleading.

screenshot-from-2017-01-07-11-08-20

My google search – US Visa Administrative Processing.

First link itself directs to – 221G – the dreaded code for every US Visa applicant.

Simply put –

“221G = VISA Reject” termed as “Application Pending Further Action.”

Applicant is told that a final decision regarding VISA cannot be made. Here, consular office invokes Section 221(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act – aka “Processing time-out.”

To make things cheesy – they have 4 kinds of slips – Pink, Blue, White, Yellow; meaning of each of them is as hazy as Mumbai University examination criterion. Moreover, consulate of Chennai may use Pink slip to signify Administrative processing while Mumbai consulate can use it for “Additional Document Required.”

Categories / Types

Detailed info about 4 types / categories
1. Administrative Processing
2. Further Consulate Review
3. Missing information or documentation:
4. Employee Employer Relationship(EVC/EC Model)

Delving deeper into similar searches led us to –
Similar Unresolved issues
http://www.immihelp.com/forum/showthread.php/123536-H4-Visa-Drop-box(IWP)-Administrative-Processing

Ultimately, after numerous web-sites, pages, thought-showering and finding, we got our –  “Calm your tits momentcalm-your-tits-no

That Administrative Processing isn’t the one we feared it to be.

It aint what you dont know that gets you into trouble,

its what you know for sure that just aint so.

For most part of our search, we were sure AP meant Visa Reject..and then we saw the light at the end of the tunnel – AP is Administrative procedure when it comes to Dropbox facility and one can be patient and await Visa Issue in 2 days.

There were few who said

Administrative Processing is nothing but 221g

While few others who said

It’s a part of their procedure

Finally I deduced – Routine Cycle
1. Case Opened/ Created
2. Ready
3. Admin Processing / Under review
4. Issued

Few other sources go on to call 221g as a Beast –

  1. Beast called 221G
  2. Administrative Processing 221G
  3. H1B Wiki – 221G

From the agony of the impending rejection, to despair and helplessness, to patience and hope, to ultimate elation and celebration – we raced through an array of emotions in these 3 days.

Instead of being a review of life experience, we experienced an entire life in that review.

In hindsight, it comes as a blessing in disguise for it enriches our lives and adds spice to our life. Amidst all this, I take home 1 important learning – Every experience is a life within and every experience documented is a lesson learnt in life.

Looking for the bigger picture, every decision we take in our life is based on such reviews, on lessons learnt.

Whether to take Commerce or Science after 10th grade..
Whether to do CA / CS… Whether to pursue Masters / MBA post under-graduation..
Whether to join a startup or an MNC..
Whether to work under someone or work for oneself..
Whether to free-lance or to start a company..

Life is all about choices. Every time we are spoilt for choices, its the lessons others have learnt, their experience, the hard yards they have put in…in 1 word – “review” that guides us. It may not necessarily be the final word, but definitely is a factor to be considered.

Hence every time someone posts a review of a gadget (read cNet, TechCrunch for App review, phone / laptop reviews), a restaurant review (remember Zomato/Yelp?) or even location / product reviews on Amazon, eBay – its a life experience documented.

While opponents may argue of the fake, incorrect, incomplete, flawed reviews and one can’t deny the possibility of their existence, still the worth of 1 genuine, real review overshoots the damage due to other fictitious ones. Again this may vary from person to person and situation to situation. But as it was in our case – Such quality reviews did settle our nerves..

Such an experience with reviews makes me wonder – how many times do we visit such sites and find them useful.. and how many times we could have documented our experience..We could have taken that pain of writing 4-5 lines on the product we used, on the solution that worked..

Here’s to the happy Zomato foodies, the thankful Amazon customers and so also to the unhappy, cheated YZ-kart user or the disgusted buyer!

Your views, documented ones – will never go waste.

Your words, real ones, have left an indelible mark, not just on digital platforms, but in the form of decisions and choices of other customers.

I pay tribute to such unsung heroes, whose digital footprint is nothing short of a valiant knock that a warrior takes upon himself. Your efforts are truly creditable.

I hope this serves as a clarion call to one and all
Its not just about you, its about the review
Its about spreading the word – good and bad
To make everyone’s life better and glad!

Coldplay – A way of living

Coldplay – A way of living

19th November, 2016

A British rock star, was set to step his foot on Indian land.
This time, not to sing in a bar or to shoot for a music video.

But to give the fans The greatest reason to be alive.

Expectations were sky high, if not more.
Global Citizen was the reason to galore.
Action Journeys, and free tickets
We, Indians couldn’t have asked for more.
Coldplay is atrocious, downright pathetic, over-hyped.
Few others, go on to say – “Mediocre band at best.” And then you hear the other clan chime.

For whom – Coldplay is – A source of inspiration, An emotion, Nothing short of life.

Here, we are,

Today, 4th December,2016 – exactly 1 year after the release of latest Coldplay album – A Head Full of Dreams. What they have left behind after Indian gig is nothing short of a “surreal feeling.” Music, as many people say, is a healer. It has the tremendous power to feed our soul and make us bold.

When it comes to Coldplay, it’s not just about their piece of music, or their rendition, or the musical composition, it’s about the connect. It’s about the strings attached and the chords that they strike, not just of guitar but also of our hearts.

Dubbed as the musically delicate and lyrically razor-sharped,
Coldplay continues to enthrall by raking in unique songs always adding a new dimension to their already rich repertoire.

We may not have experienced their journey from Pectoralz to Starfish to Coldplay. But sure they have made our Action journey worth enjoying. For the 80,000 fans present at Bandra Kurla Complex, a choc-a-bloc concert and for the rest of the world glued to the live streaming, It surely was a Night to be remembered. Every beat, every drop was cheered, jeered and braced with a loud round of applause.

The mic drop moment was when Christopher Anthony John Martin sang

Vande Mataram with none other than, Indian maestro – Allah-Rakha Rahman

Channa Mereya Mereya, Shukriya Shukriya – were his way of showing Gratitude and Tribute to all the fans who fought hard for tickets, battled the blazing sun, stood for 12 hours and wintered the storm of endless pushing, asphyxiation.

Coldplay has risen to the upper echelons of pop music, thanks to their originality, grandiosity and more importantly the connect with the real world.

Coldplay is more than just a band, its a way of living.
Here’s my favourite Coldplay song list, and Goodness Gracious, all of those sung at the concert.
  1. Yellow – Courage
  2. In My place – Wait / Hope
  3. The Scientist – Seperation
  4. Clocks – Dilemma / Fear
  5. Fix You – Rise / Resurrection
  6. Paradise – Utopia / Inspiration
  7. Every teardrop is waterfall – Rebellion
  8. A sky full of stars – Trust / Belief
  9. Ink – Pain / Agony
  10. A Head Full Of Dreams – Optimism
  11. Everglow – Unconditional Love
  12. Up and Up – Success

Parachutes, 10 July 2000

Yellow
One of my all time favourites. My first Coldplay song.
About – Undying, relentless love for that person – spouse, best friend, parents, anyone.
to be yellow – to be afraid, timid and basically sh*t scared
Look at the stars
 Look how they shine for you
And everything you do
 Yeah they were all yellow
Trying to look up at the stars, and how the universe is conspiring and cheering you, for you have managed to shed all the fears and act like a man.
Your skin
 Oh yeah your skin and bones
 Turn into something beautiful
To those who claim, there’s no poetical beauty in Coldplay. Here’s one for you –
Synecdoche – Your skin and bones – stand for the entire you
Simultaneously the metaphor – skin for physical appearance / outer self
and bones – real true inner self
Have now successfully transformed into a beautiful form.
A Rush Of Blood To The Head, 26 August, 2002
In My place
Helpless individual – waiting, endless, unedning, seems like an eternity
while there is 1 part of him which asks – how long must one wait for it?..
the other one – undying hopes, eternal optimist as they say – willing to play the waiting game.

The Scientist

Nobody said it was easy
 It's such a shame for us to part
Nobody said it was easy
 No one ever said it would be this hard
Oh take me back to the start

turns into

I'm going back to the start
When the pangs of seperation and break-up, grow heavier than the misunderstandings, the vicious circle of problems and persistent tail-chasing ..
Another beautifully sculpted song and powerful rendition

Clocks

Am I a part of the cure?
 Or am I part of the disease?

Highlights the – moral conundrum, psychitric maelstrom – “Am I accepted by the world or am I an outcast?”

The fear, fear of running out of time – the time to live

X&Y, 6 June, 2005

Fix You

Lights will guide you home
 And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Most soothing yet envigorating song
It revitalizes all your crushed hopes and resurrects these dreams to rise from ashes like the Phoenix.

Mylo Xyloto, 24 October, 2011

Paradise

Life goes on, it gets so heavy
 The wheel breaks the butterfly
Every tear a waterfall            
 In the night the stormy night she'll close her eyes
In the night the stormy night away she'd fly

So lying underneath those stormy skies
She'd say, "oh, ohohohoh I know the sun must set to rise"

Highlights – Utopia / Shangri-La

About the girl who’s toying with the notion that changing a part of her life, altering some aspect of her existence will produce a positive outcome and maybe turn her unfortunate life into her paradise.
It’s not just about wishful thinking

but about deriving valuable inspiration and motivation manifested in our own dreams

Every teardrop is waterfall

I'd rather be a comma than a full stop
Comma – sign of contradiction to come
Banner for Transition and rebellion

Also played live at the Steve Jobs memorial/celebration-of-life event at Apple headquarters on 19 October 2011 in Cupertino, California,

Ghost Stories, 19 May, 2014

A sky full of stars
And I don't care go on and tear me apart
 And I don't care if you do
Cause in a sky cause in a sky full of stars 
 I think I see you

Ink

Metaphorical pain of a breakup and Physical pain of being tattoed

Got a tattoo and the pain's alright 
 Just want a way of keeping you inside

Ironically, the C on Gwyneth Paltrow’s hip and G on Chris Martin’s arm bear testimony to the same.

Ghost stories is a pick of the albums when it comes to heartbreaks and relationship crisis. Songs portray a variety of moods swinging from
Dreamy = “Always in my head” to
Desperate = “Ink” – I love you so much it hurts

Last ditch pleas for reconciliation = “True Love” – “So tell me that you love me/ And if you don’t then lie to me”

Turning finally to the conciliatory statement, a bittersweet recognition of “Time to move on” amazingly captured by – “A Sky full of stars”
A Head Full Of Dreams, 4 December, 2015
An album 180 degree turn from melancholic Ghost stories is a total redemption
That sentiment of missing, waiting, yearning, despair all has faded and now ..
Its all about Fixing the car, Driving it again, Searching for water, Hoping for the rain

Mending the soul, Preparing it for life, Looking for new opportunities, In a positive light

Everglow

So if you love someone, you should let them know
 oh the light that you left me will everglow

Up and Up

Lying in the gutter, aiming for the moon
 trying to empty out the ocean with a spoon
Up and Up, Up and Up
Highlights the Personification of an Eternal optimist
Lying in gutter = Hit the rock bottom
Thus, left with no other place but up
Impossible can be turned into possible..
Source –

Towards a Cashless India?

Towards a Cashless India?

Are we missing a trick here?

8th November 2016 : All hell broke loose

In India and in America, albeit for different reasons..

It’s more than 2 weeks now…

“Bank manager in Rohtak dies in office after spending three days at work” – Blame PM Modi for it.

“Hordes of Indians standing in the queue for hours and hours together” – Yes, Modi is the culprit.

“Innocent people with years of savings now under a spot of bother” – Modi, how can you be so inhuman?

“BJP top brass already knew about it.. ofcourse they deposited lakhs of black money planning in advance” – I always knew he was “very fair”

“School students join hands to mint the new 2000 rupee notes” – Thank god, now the cash shortage will surely end..

Best of all – “Why aren’t the dudes of Baramati, UP and Bihar behind the bars for hoarding black money?” – Modi, you have truly failed..

Stories, gimmicks, humbug, mudslinging..

Well, India once again shies away from development and slides into the abyss of “political slugfest”.

As I sit down and take stock of the events that have transpired, rhetoric and blame-game aside, I begin to realize – We surely have missed a trick or two, here.

Idea amazing, implementation not upto the mark – There are no two ways about it. But what we have failed to understand is the door, Modi unlocked.

For years and years together, bureaucracy remained India’s Achilles heel. Thanks to the new government, bureaucratic world has suddenly turned upside down. But what bothers me today is –

If India truly has become hospitable for businesses and investment, where are the sparks flying, where are the signs of change?

Where are the likes of Visa, MasterCard? And what has happened to the intense power struggle of Android Pay and Apple Pay? Why are PayPal, InstaMojo, Citrus Pay sleeping on the cards? If I were HDFC, Citi, HSBC or Barclays, demonetization would be a gold mine…not referring to the black money converted gold mine…

Electronic payment, few years back, was solely defined by the possession credit cards, debit cards – a luxury enjoyed by the upper echelons of Indian society. In comes Technology, and the electronic payment sphere witnessed revolution.

21st century saw the rise of Mobile Payment and Digital Wallet Services packed with the potential to not only replace hard green stashes but also the entire gamut of cards. And that perplexes me – Is it only me who sees the opportunity bestowed by PM Modi thanks to demonetization?

“You can only lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink”

If I were Google and Apple, instead of fighting over the supremacy of Apple Pay and Android Pay, I would join hands with the government and usher the masses to utilize their platform. Never in the history of our country has a competitive tussle contributed towards our betterment and prosperity. But the demographics can change if every smartphone user (atleast 20% of 1.3 billion mobile phone users) adopts mobile payment.

Its astonishing to see a country like India be behind the rest of the globe in terms of Smartphone Penetration, Internet Usage and Financial Literacy. It’s time to catch up with the rest of the world. Smartphone manufactures, Internet Service Providers, Financial Experts – It isn’t just Modi who runs the government. You all play an important part too.

Here’s a chance for you to prove. Here’s that “chance of a lifetime” as they say.

“Strike whilst the iron is hot”

It’s time to raise awareness. It’s time to stick together and co-operate. It’s time to embrace the transition.

Online Banking, Credit cards, Debit cards, Payment Gateways – the once pale Indian dinner has now been richly served with Gulab jamun, rasgulla – All it awaits is the willingness to eat..

Awaiting the announcement of Exciting offers, subsidized transaction rates and affordable mobile payment gateways..
The mouth watering prospect of Truly Cashless India…

The Dark Light

The Dark Light

A wonderfully scripted story….refreshing read!…

Caffeine- A lucid dream

“Andhere ka sach
Aankhon ko chubta raha
Ujaale ka vehem
Aankhon ko accha lagaa
Subah ne waqt bataaya
Aur Raat ne ehsaas dilaaya”

________did you hear it? _______was I audible now?

I am Darkness.

Not the Hannibal Lector psychopath guy from “Silence of The Lamb”.
I am the one with the room full of lights, only swtiched off.
While you shower in a dark bathroom, with eyes closed, and a trance music playing on your phone, I, darkness, am humming alongwith you through the “shrrrrr” of the shower.

We have known each other for years, but you never really noticed me in all that light.

I admit I had a scary way of introducing myself in your childhood, but I just wanted to get close to you. The light as usual stole my thunder and lightening its flickering and constant need to be noticed.

I never demanded…

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