Saturday, May 23, 2009


I got car rental for thee long memorial day weekend. Oh god, i so miss the regularly intermittent holidays that pepper every month of our existence in India. Like the chocolate chips in a chocolate cookie, they are capable of sweetening any dour month/week/year you had in office. unfortunately the US has this 'work culture' and proud of it too that they work their asses off the 5 days of the week celebrate weekends like there no tomorrow[or next week if u will]. Not for me the headbanging on a computer monitor 8-7 . I would rather work with the deadline a week in front of me and no other constraint conditions[well i would rather NOT work but thats not an option i guess] . So there it is with a 3 day weekend the americanos have gone crazy. there's festivity in the air ,families are packing up for a getaway to sunny beaches where they will cook themselves and their children in the scorching sun, slowly turning over in the hot hot sand with clothes that would make mallika sherawat look as well covered as a desert bedouin. I had the misfortune of accompanying my friends here [fellow interns] to one such place, the santa cruz boardwalk. forget that the sun was 35 degrees,peanuts if this was india but oonce you are acclimatised to the cooll MTV air at 20 degrees odd,believe me , you would wish to die or swept in the 15 degree sea water of the pacific before being subjected to such a step gradient over a period of 3 hours.
The drive there was nauseating. Ghaatis were never my cup of tea and the way to SC was full of twisting winding curves that urged my intestines to come out and say 'hi' to everyone. Thankfully it all passed before it got too ugly and we were at the first stop of our trip : the Mission.
Which brings me to another thing abt Americans. Their heritage is as old as that vintage 1940 fiat that you see rusting in the sun in india at some quaint location in almost every city. Forget that they take care of it as if it were something that they could use to get into the exclusive club of 'Having an actual past' club [beg pardon not at my sarcastic best today ,not deleting anything i type u see which of course raises the question : how long did my previous posts take to write with all the editing?] anyways to jump back from the smallish detour, america would love to join the big league of china,egypt india ,europe, etc who can actually boast of heritage but unfortunately it has to do with smallish brick and mortar cottages as heritage sites.
so the mission was nothing but a couple of churches. must have had some significance but then i am not one of those travellers who like to know the history of the things we see around us .if its there click it,share it on facebook and u are done with the responsibility placed on you by society[or at least pple from where u came]
after that the fellow indian on the team urged us on to santa cruz[he is from florida] boardwalk which he assured us in the most serious tones possible ,was infested,NO, overrunning with chick ,scantily clad chicks[indians...dont get me started on them :P] what he didnt warn us of was that the operative word there was overrunning . seemed like everybody had picked that particular day to grill themselves .to make the best of the bad deal we headed to the rides. they looked fun. one of them was one of those ones that propelled u vertically thousands of inches above ground before giving u a taste of free fall. then the rollercoaster shooting alleys, riding the water Wave, dangerous looking merry go rounds,glider slider and so on and so forth. Now my friends rode the scariest ones . i being[it it me being or i being??] the most dastardly miser in the world of course stayed back. the fact coupled with the one that i am more sure of the power of gravity than the electromagnetic forces that give safety straps their name ,simply made my choice more certain. not for me the whale splat on magrathea[ref: HhGTTG] so i ran for the nearest place under the sun,no sorry, that was in plenty. what was scarce was a place in the shade under the sun. after squeezing myself in between a superheavyweight lady[alas no ride could fit HER in] and a guy dressed like the Village people,i settled up on reading my book of the day :ten little indians by agatha chrsties,if u permit a Small detour[remember we have detoured away from the original topic of driving so this is a nested detour in the 2 higher order detours we have already taken]
let me go on record and say that that book completely reaffirmed Cristie's claim on my favorite novelist' throne. awesome book. read it.
by the time my friends returned 3 people had already been murdered and still no clue as to who the killer was. by then my throat was parched and i set out for a drink. bought one for 200 bucks i think. the conversion rates are killing me,man.. and the bottle was half filled with ice. talk about cheating.
since we had come to the beach and we hadnt walked on the sand, that crept up as the next -to-do- agenda . so we walked abt 100 meters to the water by which time the feet had turned a nice golden brown like they show on cooking shows. the water of course was frigid and i was reminded of the calvin and hobbes strip where they run to and fro from the snow outside to the warm fire inside,sizzling ice with their warm butts before running back for a refill. we walked along on the transition area just to be safe. two of us attempted a swim but the water was too cold even for canadians .Now how colder can it get! the 'two of us didnt include me despite their being no cost on entering the water. but the gravity god is relentless. he doesnt spare u .only normal reaction can save you fromm his wrath[apparently they are married.pple say it is not a happy marriage. Think of the kid ] and water isnt too strong on the normal reaction front.
as far as the scenery is concerned , it wasnt too alluring.sure the dress quotient was low but the dress material to adoration[for want of a better word] is a gaussian distribution and though it is skewed to the left ,the maxima is still positive. and most ladies on the beach were near zero. some of course were at zero. and after a while , you think : another one! sheesh put something on dear.
castro street on fridays is quite close to the maxima :)
am tired of writing as u are of reading.
oh thus ended the day at the beach. i practically jumped into the swimming pool after coming back .i was broiled .no more beaches for me

Monday, May 18, 2009


warm mellow .
blazing yellow.

Today i threw in 2 eggs, bread pieces, oil, sauce, garlic, chocolate and fried chips in a pan and ate the aggregate. Oh and a covering of shredded cheese. I like to call it random dish number 3

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Some pics

Brushcetta with Omelette du fromage and a steaming hot cup of Coffee[the Indian nescafe kind, Americano coffee is atrocious !!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Update 1 : Journey to Mountainview

Arrived at Delhi airport with my parents 2 hours before checkin time. Consigned the company car to the 120rs/hour(2$40cents/hour) parking lot and proceeded to appreciate the Bus stand/fishmarket that terminal 2 is. Went into the adjoining visitors lounge and to deserve a table,proceeded to order a Lime Mirinda[small] the cheapest item on the list[yes,less than a 1 litre mieralwasser] and sucked at the straw to chiselle out the impression of an unending source of sweet fluids in the dark recesses of the plastic covered cup. dad continued to ogle at girls/aunties at the airport.he needs to grow up and fast! finally struck the hour to enter

went in.looked around took a deep breath. joined the long sinuous line of lufthansa.seemed by the turnout that some of us might have to sit on the wings/plane top. joined the frequent flyer slip to while away the time. i fly as frequently as somebody is happy to finance my trip. had a vacationing couple on front of me. had like a ton of baggage.daresay spent half his trip money on bokonig the baggae. wonder what they'll doo on the ay back. finally my turn. 2 bags total 39 kgs.7 kgs less than regulation 46 kgs. guess what the asymmetry might thro the plane into turbulence so waa given the following constraint equation to solve

x+ y = 39,
currently x= 36,y =5
now this was difficult if you appreciate the fact that my smaller bag was small . tranferred high density packets of rice/maggi/shampoos/sabuns etc etc there and then under the sneering eyes of my co=passengers, confident in their slolutions to the afore mentioned constraint equation. one of them followed me down the same travesty stuffed stuff into my hand baggage,my laptop bag and there where the sun dont shine[the back pack that is] managed to get it down to 23.1 and 12.4 the over enthusisatic lufthansa incharge was a bit apprehensive at the extra 100 grams but very kindly decided to wave it in with one of his royal flourishes. thank god he didnt check the handbaggage the remaining 5 kgs went into that. breezed thru baggage screening,only suspicion was the sugar bottle in my back pack and a lady who very smoothly tried to take away my mobile andlaptop alongwith her purse. thankfully caught her in time.
learnt the hard way that wifi at airports is NOT free. quite a shocker ,that was.
boarded. got the merggency exit seat do ample leg space.thank god for small mercies and large legrooms. slept. slept .slept again. said hi to old couple sitting beside me.s;ept. got up . asked for bit of bread. decided lufthansa sucks. audio entertainment and lousy magazines. as revenge decided to drink up all their onboard reserves of nonalcoholic beverages. got drunk on coke,sprite,apfel juice,orange juice. couldnt tolerate tomato juice so i let the rest of them have it. o'course vodka et al were untouched .that will be on the way back
landed at frankfurt. went out saw thw airport.huge,beautiful etcc etc. met a jet hopping indian. went looking for a webcam.still didnt buy the 220V-110V converter. lounged in the Gucci outlet. salesgirl saw thru my ruse. gave me a look that teleported me out of the august gates of the establishment. guess they are trained in seeing thru ruses/cheapstakes like me. saw asians trotting around in masks. wondered if i shud get one too. wondered against it. boarded again.
got the worst shock but then i am now accustomed to this.[ref:poem on co=passengers] was again seated on the head of the column so again lots of leg space a la business class.but that wasnt the shocking part :) the head of the column is reserved for ladies traveling with small toddlers,yes the same whining crying crying whimpering drooling pack of pain in the ass kids that make them so adorable [thick with sarcasm] tried to go to sleep. tried again. the little devils didnt allow me a wink. got red eye.tried to sleep again.failed. went to the back of the plane.stood thr looking out of the window.stood for the next 7-8 hours coming back for lunch[europe] and lunch[US] had breathtaking view of the arctic circle,gorgeous snow till the eyes could see. crossed the rockies.awesome shots taken. landed after a very forgettable flight. the hostesses had the nerve to give me a parting left hook by saying 'travel with lifthansa again' jeesus! not if i am paying.
literally ran off from the plane.pple wondered if i was in a race. went to immigrations.answered a few innocuous raised eyebrows,computer 'professionals' are a dime a dozen in this part of the world,especially indians. came out.found to my great amazement that wifi is not free inSFO. shutted down and went out for a taxi. breathed the cool SFO air.light drizzle.grat weather for one coming from a place where 40 degree celsius is 'a cool day'. taxi driver from Nepal. acknowldged that LALoo is known EVERYWHERE. Bihar and Laloo are now officially the one and the same. astounded by the speed of the cars on the highway,beg pardon the freeway . thanked got hadnt opted for the car rental. beautiful cars and drivers all around.reached my partment an hour before i was scheduled to . wasnt ready.sat on a couch in the lobby trying hard not to go to sleep. failed. woke up.still wasnt ready.went for a walk in the neighbourhood. stumbled across the spa swimming pools tennis courts etc. stubled back into lobby.Awesome wifi all around.chatted with mom. lugged my luggage to my room.the bed is so fluffy. i dont remember anything after that :)
dj from pahadi nazara