Sunday, September 14, 2014

Caramel custard and a haircut!

Caramel custard and a haircut!

What’s with the topic – no relation, a common point though- overworked.

Off late have been working late, weekends, cancelling leave and all. Not that I should be happy about it; as my boss had put it a few years back – even donkeys work!!

Caramel custard:

Being overworked, either you sit and do nothing or you do something different than usual. Nihar came with the idea of cooking and the thought of custard. Custard to me was always the dessert that adjusted to those little empty spaces of stomach yet to be filled after you already had a good feast on the main course. The not so sweet, soft and browny matter has been a favourite.    

I always had this limited understanding of food – I prefer to just eat. As I learn though - you appreciate food not when you eat but when you understand what pain it takes to cook a good dish.

Both of us started with our limited understanding, logging on google for help. ‘How to (…and google comes up with some weird suggestions) prepare caramel custard’. We clicked on to Sanjeev Kapoor school of food – a young lady came up on you tube with the recipe. Women are detailed in approach (am not getting into the Mars vs Venus thing) and thanks to some professional work experience, Women, I notice are bit too much detailed. This lady started with the precision of cutting the milk pouch at the right corner, pouring and heating the milk at the right temperature with the right quantity, etc etc… and then came the Oven!! A bachelor pad has some limitations – an Oven was our case.

Chuck it, step 1 again - ‘How to prepare caramel custard without Oven’. As we clicked on you tube link, a guy appeared. Simple technique – take milk, pour it in the vessel, break the eggs in the milk, mix them, mix sugar in few drops of water, heat the sugar till it turns brown and allow it to settle down, then pour the mix on settled sugar, take a large vessel to create steam and put the other vessel so that it can be steamed. Oh yeah – this has guy has to be bachelor – great understanding of the limitations and enough encouragement for other bachelor friends to experiment. So much so, we felt he must have plucked the milk pouch with his teeth rather than using the precision of the scissor to cut at the corner.

Perfect – we start then.

Everything went well – as shown by our Bro on you tube – till the time we reached the Oven stage. We put our pan (a vessel sort, without the abnormal base, which we realized only at the end) in another large vessel so that we create some sort of a steamer. Put on the fire and wait. Wait, wait and wait – Women being precise, I feel, provide that right estimate – Men, I feel, work in range. This Bro of ours, made us believe that the Custard takes no more than 20 mins of steaming –in actual the steaming lasted for over 3 hours!! I would have just given up on the very thought that something meaningful would have come out, but to our delight, the Custard came out perfect. That layer of caramel at the top and the softness was like that at a hotel. Out of shape though, efforts paid off when we tasted dessert next day – delicious. Kudos to the cooks!


What’s so different – I have a haircut every 3 weeks or the 4th week max. This was different though.

I had a meeting next day and did not want to appear shabby at a client meet. But then, could not leave office on time and was thinking of heading right to the saloon when I reach my place. As I was walking past my usual route to Dadar station, there is this fancy new saloon that has come up. I felt it was unisex – I could see a few guys sitting outside hoping for the customer to come in for a haircut. A thing with Men – as I generalize, is that they don’t like spending too much on a haircut. Max 100 bucks – that too is considered pricey. I sensed this place could cost tad more but then I had this exigency. I entered, sat and waited for guy to come in. Nope – a female came in (again guys, this is not a Mars vs Venus thing). I asked her to cut medium– she responded – half inch? C’mon – don’t be so precise, we like range – small, medium or just trim them.    

I always wondered what it takes to be patient – my married friends would be more aware- it’s not that a woman who goes to a parlour that takes time – it’s also, as I could infer, about the other woman who is tasked to serve her. This lady was being so precise- she took almost an hour to cut my hair. I can’t sit in that chair usually beyond half hour. She washed my hair, then partitioned them and then cut them half inch every time (she kept measuring each cut with her fingers).  She wouldn’t have stopped- I requested her – I was hungry by that time. I usually prefer a head massage as well, not this time – I would have hoped too much from those gentle hands.

Time to pay – a simple haircut – 450 bucks! I know guys what you are thinking- sympathize with me.  


Sunday, May 25, 2014

Valuations and Matrimony !!


Disclaimer: My views, your views (particularly, married friends- u can focus on the DCF) may be different !!

This phase of my life - I'm into the profession of valuations. To be more clear, I do business and equity valuations, day in day out, professionally. And at a personal level, I'm into the survival mode of finding a suitable match. This phase of my life - am not sure how to refer- but is difficult, tense and more taxing than actually working for making a living. Sure, it was same for a few of you, but you have sailed past and am stuck somewhere.

Let me hold back on the main subject and ponder of how did I get into this phase? let me divide my life into few more phases (and here start the bullet points),

·         School phase - I don't remember what I did, lost it somewhere...

·         College phase - I remember attending but then had the onerous task of clearing CA exams; that meant clear focus on passing out first (so no girls again!)

·         Job I phase - Decent salary

·         Job II phase - Polishing skills.... (and still polishing skills; never work with a Boss who is just too good at this work, you always feel a beginner)


Starting College phase and till date, I have been, by and large, with the same set of friends. A phase where, Friends A and B and C stuck together for a large part of their life and had more time to discuss work, bosses, girls and life, in general. Friend A, Friend B and Friend C....and Friend A, Friend B and Friend C...all happy and gay (pls, gay = happy at heart, as per old English and not as now understood in Sec 377). In these set of things, suddenly one day, Friend A got married and then Friend B got married. Friend C then wanted to get married but realised how difficult it is to just find someone that matches (or does not match) your wavelength. Ok though, that's not that part to be discussed here. What is to be discussed is as an individual what is ones value in the matrimonial market and how it is perceived as an matrimonial match? Since, I have some experience of the arranged marriage set up now, I thought of marrying these two aspects of professional and personal lives.


To begin, valuation involves 3 methods - the net assets value (NAV), the discounted cash flow approach (DCF) and the market multiples. I see to apply them from a hopeful groom's perspective,


1.       NAV - It represents the value of the assets you (or your family!) holds. Most relevant from bride's perspective. This perhaps could be the largest driver of decisions from a brides/ brides family. This approach though does not provide that individuals value per se. I can have assets inherited but not earned by me but as said is very relevant for the Indian bride and her family. Let me chuck this out though- this method does not give a 'going concern' value, nor does it capture the earning potential of the groom. This is how, on most occasions we discard this method in our professional applications as well.

2.       Market multiples - Markets know better, isn't that true. When you see a stock trading at a price on the markets, you presume the price at what it is traded to be its 'fair value' at that point in time and invest if you feel it would give a good return on money in future. Its relative and you consider peers, industry sector, management and what not before investing. Same with the groom. If his salary is decent enough and more or less above others, chances of him getting an good interest are higher. The end result is still dicey for the groom as involves other factors as well.

3.       DCF - the most important and where am more focussed on. All finance guys learn one thing as part of their curriculum, 'value of any asset (and if the groom be called an asset), is the present value of its future earnings'. This is the first line I remember reading on the cover page of MAFA subject at PE-II level of CA exams and has stayed with me. So, I do a valuation based on future cash flows. Not easy, very subjective and many variables involved - I still put a thought though.


So, I start with some base salary. Most of my peers earn, say in the range of INR 1.5 mn to INR 2.5 mn gross p.a, and I start to apply that here as well (A few are outliers but this not for them are more likely snapped up in the matrimonial market). Remember, this is the earning potential and based on assumptions, and I make a few further assumptions -


a) Life = say u survive 70 years (be optimistic), b) Inflation = Say hovers around 5% (that is what RBI thinks of the long term), c) Increment rate (on an average) = 8% (actuaries say for calculating gratuity!) d) Discount rate = 6% (if inflation is 5%, am hoping risk free rate would be percent higher and in such a long run one won't really fool the markets to do better than the risk free rate for his earnings), e) Working life of 58 years (happy, if I have a black swan event to reduce it to say 50 and retire to enjoy life - but then its black swan event, how to predict) and then 5 more years of consulting at the same level of earnings (no inflation, just to be realistic and optimistic), f) Taxes (how can you ignore) - 30% g) Expenses rate  - 40%, throughout.


A long list of assumptions? Yeah, valuations is subjective. What do I get for the outcome - a value range - for salary range of INR 1.5 mn to INR 2.5 mn, the value outcome is INR 27 mn to INR 44 mn. Present value of future cash flows of that individual. And to add some sensitivity, what if the discount rate increases by 1% (to 7%), well the value range, with all other factors cet par, lies between INR 23 to INR 38 mn.


Well, well, well...said all of the above, how does the matrimonial market value you though - If I had understood that, I won't have found time to write this blog!


PS: Hope blogspot continues to remain at the end of my life and I continue to live...I wanna validate all my DCF assumptions then!

Monday, February 3, 2014


All these years in Mumbai, I learnt that drinking or smoking is not considered socially bad, be that for a guy or a girl (not to my concern anyway!). I have stayed with a variety of friends - non- drinkers, drinkers, social drinkers, those only happy with beer or a glass of wine, and I have accompanied them willingly (and at times unwillingly) wherever they have been to drink. This blog is not about social contours of Mumbai but about alcohol and the places most of my friends were affectionate of. For me, it was always the side dish - the Chakna, to be enjoyed while spending endless time chatting and waiting for my connoisseur friends to finish their drink. I don't claim to have explored all areas in Mumbai but the ones visited may resonate the same environment at most locations. 

Web definition of Chakna is, 'a spicy stew made out of goat tripe and other animal digestive parts, is a speciality dish among Hyderabadi Muslims....'

To me, Chakna was the dish (and to disappoint again, I am veg) that gave the much needed succour and company to last those long arduous hours of meaningless chatter with my drunk friends. Mostly free but overeating kills all your appetite for the main dish.

A few places that I have liked, primarily as an experience of the place rather than the food, have been

1. Leopold Cafe - one of the oldest in Town, I like the chairs, tables and the seating arrangement here but not the overall ambience. This is the only place that I have frequented more than twice and honestly, I always felt it to be pricey (not that I paid for any drinks!). Its more westernised for the food with my liking being the peanuts and green chutni served as Chakna. Veg crispy and the sweet and salted lime juice was another best combination for me. I have had back to back lemon juices to eat my time here. Must visit but nothing missed if not frequented; no great food either.

2. Cafe Mondegar - Best is the ambience, famous for the conspicuous plates and the paintings on the walls (Mario Miranda special!!). I like this place, more than Leopold. Onion rings, peanuts and the sweet and salted lime juice were the better combination for me at this place. A full glass Lassi is another time consuming and filling diet to last all the drink stock of others.

3. Gokul -  Economical and youthful, mostly college students. I have been at this place only once, situated in the alley behind Taj, the name itself sounded shady for a place in South Mumbai. It was the most crowded place I have seen for a sitting only bar and even the interiors were not classy with simple bench like tables to sit. Its youthful because its economical, and as I understood from my few connoisseur friends that most college students in Mumbai visit this place atleast once. As far as the Chakna goes, the fried salted garlic was one I liked most. Perhaps its most common across most bar's, but for me it was different and we easily had repeat dishes of it coming to our table.
4. WTF - The abbreviation is enough. Located at Santacruz or start of Bandra (if am correct), this place for me was more for the crowd than the food or drink. I dont recollect the Chakna here but am sure of the pretty faces around made up for most of the time.
All said, how do I not mention of the sessions at the flat and the homemade variety of the Chakna consumed over can of Coke. These have been the home made chakli, the papdi, Haldiram's diet chiwda or the farsan. The best companions for me from being not chucked from any discussions that my friends would have after getting drunk. After all, everyone needs a side kick once a while to stay in the course.
PS: As I finish writing this one, I had food at our one of earlier frequented hotel at Mulund (Hotel Pooja!). I noticed in the menu, peanuts are being charged now!!
a few more places like Pooja, Sports bar, Gaylord or the ManU cafe could have been in he list, but cant remember all the menu's...and as Chakna, salted cashew were also best.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

3 Characters

There are few people in our lives who impact us and a few instances about them make us laugh. Listing such 3 people below, for the way they have impacted my life.

Vandana - the corporate maid

Every evening when I step into the flat, I subconsciously start sniffing like the bomb squad dog, sniffing if any food has been cooked for the evening. This is the time I notice Vandana at my subconscious level.
Our association with Vandana (as maid!) has been for more than 7 years (technically 5 years as 2 years might have gone in as leave cum holidays!). She has been working mostly for 5 days a week, cooks as per her convenient time, any time paucity or she has to rush somewhere - expect only rice mixed with vegetables (technically veg biryani), all holidays applicable - she does not believe in any particular religion, avails bank holidays and on diwali her bonus has to be ensured.
Vandana has taught us the importance and the variety of relationships any human can have. Infact, even my mother never exemplified that I could have so many relatives. All these years, I have lost count to the incidents that might have happened to her relatives- happy, sad or whatever. We have uncles, aunts, cousins, nephews, etc, etc. They get married, have children, divorced or could fall sick, hospitalised or worse pass away. She taught, that its humane and expected of you to make your presence felt. Thanks to her frequent absences, we command an amazing level of loyalty at our local joint, we just tell them the building with the order and the guy on the other side completes the entire address like an autofill. Even our orders have become standardised and we discuss only the vegetable to be ordered, rest - autofill.
Not that we have not her tried confronting - I had given up long time back but Nihar gave his best shot recently over her absence for a week.  When Vandana stepped in, Nihar in a scornful tone did ask reason for her absence? In response -a box of sweets got opened, sweets offered to both- occasion being birth of baby boy to Vandana's cousin sister topped with a short description of all the events! We ate the sweets and went back to watch TV, no more questions asked.
I vouch for her honesty though. Somehow, Chai had confidence (overconfidence!) on Tom to deposit some cash (30k) at bank and kept the amount on the kitchen counter, disguised enough . As usual, Tom forgot and further (as usual) Vandana checked on the bag. That evening, Vandana came back with shiver to check if the money was still there and was correct. I was at home and only after being told I checked to find the cash in the bag (how concerned friends we were of each other!).
Nonetheless, a lesson learnt from Vandana- for all the damn reasons - your personal life is important to your job!

Jaya - ideal employee

If Vandana is the corporate maid, Jaya is the ideal employee that the employer would want to employ. Punctual, consistent and moreover- she likes her job.
Jaya helps our bachelor pad and our clothes clean (somehow, I know it sounds well off, which we are not - but our theory has been to outsource work at which we are not good or can be best done by others).
 Now, when I say she keeps  our flat and clothes clean, I mean she really keeps them clean. Over the past two years she has washed out few good shirts in a span of few months, so much so that I specifically told her to be kind hearted on them. I have started keeping all my loose clothes locked, if not, they go for washing. It does not matter if they were being washed a day before. A friend was on visit for 2 days, and he kept his socks in the shoes itself- whats wrong? Well, we realised the night he was leaving that they had been washed and wet! He went back without wearing socks.
Jaya has been asking for a pay cut now citing less work - well, ideal employee, I say.

Mhatre kaka - The AAM aadmi

Ah! if any one in our society could give Mr Kejriwal a run for his money, it has to Mhatre kaka. I believe he has held the broom more selflessly than Mr Kejriwal has and would be more famous not only in the adjacent 3 societies but also amongst the BMC ward officers of the area.
I think Mhatre kaka has retired, that is what I gather from the limited interactions I have had with him. I have mostly seen him in his baniyan and his blue coloured knee length short most often with the broom in hand. I didnt know there is something called as OCD - I know now it exists.
I hardly see BMC sweepers clean our society area. But, I have seen Mhatre kaka sweep the front side road, the backyard, clean the tree trunks, and if this not enough, I have spotted him help clean other society backyards! That's some commitment.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Aamchi Mumbai: the Mumbai local

Off late have commented on the joys and pains of my commute  in Mumbai locals, this blog is in continuation of those experiences. 

If Indian railways contribute towards national integration, am sure Mumbai locals integrate Mumbaikars, literally! They represent Mumbai. I remember in my campus interview at Pune, the interviewer had told me that unlike here, where you might see 100 people at a time, in Mumbai you will have 1000's. I didn't take him seriously.

7 years since I must have taken first journey on the locals. New to the City, I had to find out any relatives staying in Mumbai. I did find one, they having shifted from Andheri to Virar recently. So, I had an PHD even before I could graduate a degree in the subject of local commute.

The 3 lines
The City has been divided by the Western, Central and Harbour lines (lines not routes). Took some time to adjust to the count, names and the directions of the platform to get down at the stations on the Central line (apart from Kurla, I know there is an station which has platform on both sides, err which is that??).

Of all the stations, Dadar, to me, is the kumbh of Mumbai (and am thankful and fortunate of not experiencing Kurla!!). You walk with some one talking and am sure you would bang atleast 10 people on the way, either you go their way or they come yours. When you do manage to reach, you have already lost the other person and end up calling him to check his location.
A colleague from Delhi had to visit Dadar (e) for some work from Dadar (w), and I suggested her to go via Dadar station. Next day, she mentioned that she has never seen so many people at one place, it was like purani Delli!!

Common spots
Mumbaikars, have common places to wait for someone at the station. Be that the Ist class towards Thane (or VT) or the erstwhile UTI bank ATM (since changed to Axis bank). The UTI ATM was one common spot, I remember always being used.

The compartment mix
Western line, to my knowledge, is dominated by Gujratis and Marwaris...Central line to my knowledge is also dominated by Gujaratis and Marwaris (haha, no offence meant to my Gujju and Madu friends, this is just an general observation).
Then come the Maharashtrians; these guys I think, stay faraway places for no reason but for the fact that they have sold their belongings in Town and shifted to make place for the more business minded classes (again an general observation, no offence to Maharashtrians). No wonder you can easily get a Jain dish at any place in Town but no Maharashtrian food, and we call this the Capital Maharashtra.
Commonly, I admire the cheerful Guju groups from the stock exchanges playing cards and noting points scored by each member at the end of every game till Ghatkopar. I have always wondered, how do they settle the game at the end, if at all they decide to wind that in cash?
Maharashtrians, I have noted, always tend to take the doors. They will have friends across the compartment and will make a point to say bye to each of them while getting down, and at the top of their voice.

The compartment fights... mc, bc the lingua franca!!
I remember an incident, was getting up in the compartment with people following me in the peak rush morning hour. During all the pushing and shoving, couple of them got into an argument. The shorty of them started saying, 'uncle, chalo andar, jaga banao'. The taller though was not budging, the shorty kept on saying 'uncle chalo, uncle....'. The other guy burst...'b*****d, uncle kisse bola, teri umar ka hoon!!' Till date, this has been the funniest argument I have witnessed, really made my day. Saying so, have seen punches galore in Men's compartment but only heard of the cat fights...
The compartment places...standing, sitting, sitting balcony and AC
The trick is how well you manage to get in the compartment. There are a few places to the liking of commuters.
Rush hours, if you get a place to sit in or stand comfortably, you really had a good day. But, there are these other two spots that have always intrigued me...
Sitting balcony: this spot is the one adjacent to the ladies coach. For non commoners, there is usually an wire mesh between the 1st class gents and the 1st class ladies coach. The sit am referring to is the one adjacent to the window opposite the ladies coach. Sitting here, one has the view of the beautiful compartment and the much needed air to soothe (the standing spot is famous as much, but is more obvious).
Standing AC: This one is the best, standing at the door (1st place though). Plug your earphones, forget people with their usual business on the tracks and enjoy the loneliness. Only thing to be kept on mind is to make way people to get down at crowded stations and pray that no stone comes your way.
And, points to consider
Firstly, give a damn to the pressed shirt and the polished shoes. Secondly, even if you had a bad day, dont forget to use the words 'sir or dost', while getting in or out of the locals compartment. And, lastly, graduate to cars (just that u need to have ample patience with the traffic jams and the pot holed roads).
Jai ho.

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Sunday, October 23, 2011


Some trips are memorable, nearly 10 months down the year with this one, yet feel very refreshing writing on it.
It was Daisy’s marriage sometime late January this year at Gondia (on MP & Maharashtra border), and likeways me, Chai and Tom were planning to attend. Offlate most of my trips with friends have been attending some other friends marriage. Although we are not much of help at the marriage but then we are those silent spectators for the ‘one more down’ phenomenon. Tom, being recently married dodged us; a usual thing for the married, it was the two of us who decided to go ahead. Along with attending the marriage, we planned to visit Kanha- the tiger reserve in MP and it turned out to be a cherishing journey in the wild.

We took the Nagpur Duronto, boarding at CST and reached at about 7 am. We were planning to go to Gondia and then to Kanha (Gondia is enroute Kanha, and would suggest people who may want to visit Kanha to directly reach Gondia via train rather than hopping from Nagpur). Confused for our next move, Chai got a call from some Anuj- colleague of Daisy. Just perfect for us, four colleagues of Daisy-Anuj, Mustan, Nupur & Nidhi were also on the same train to attend the wedding and who had also planned a visit to the tiger reserve. Infact, I was a bit surprised to see these guys come. Somehow haven’t found people from my workplace so enthusiastic to visit a far place wedding. But there were they, my first impression of Anuj was that he seemed senior, helped by his blackberry often checking emails. Mustan, the defying bombaitte, seemed quiet initially. The two girls, Nupur- the ‘thirkee’ and Nidhi- the simplistic, just kept quiet (for those moments only!!). Plus side, these four had some research done on Kanha, proper printouts in place-right from info on Kanha to the cab drivers numbers in Nagpur. I was quiet impressed, atleast better than my yielding to Chai’s last moment plans (I say so, but I prefer plans
of Chai to visit any place, bloody reads a lot of stuff and more or less has some idea of the geography of the place). As I found out later, all of them were new joinees at the workplace which made me remember my first job and the friends I made there. Throughout the trip they had the same topics to discuss about the workplace- bosses, salary and the linkups.

We hired a sumo from Nagpur and decided to go to Kanha directly. Amazing!! my first reaction on the place. Believe me, being from Mumbai and crowded out for space, Kanha was a perfect place to be. Visit any tiger reserve, particularly if you intend to get away from the populous city.

We reached at about 5.30-6.0 in the evening, and though late we decided to get on to the evening batch of the tiger safari (two batches of about 3 hours are organized by the forest department - one in the morning and then in the evening, morning batch starts at about 6 am and the evening at 4 pm). Although we could not see the endangered species that evening, the tour egged us to get up early for the morning safari.

Kanha has two gates to begin the safari from- Mukki and Kanha. Since we took the safari from Mukki gate, we decided to take the morning safari from Kanha gate. The only thought I had at that time was to take good rest during the night but all these thoughts were soon zonked out, by the so called the liquor connoisseurs (just categorizing beer/ wine/ tequila and whatever to simply liquor). I don’t know of how these connoisseurs find out the drinking trait of each other and then how they manage to find a place to get the required stuff, but they do. After again some couple of hours of travel in the darkness, we reached the other side round to Kanha gate, some time about 9.0-9.30 pm. Amazingly, that sleepy place could organize food even at that time –both veg and non veg!!

The connoisseurs had the drinking session on- Chai, Mustan and in a limited way Anuj and the thirkee, before dinner was served. For the love of the drinks (and zero wastage policy) Chai exceeded his drink quota and seemed to be out of his senses for a while. For the first time I saw him sway around a bit. We had the dinner and moved on to our rooms for the much needed sleep. In between though Nidhi had freaked out on some a guy who helped around in the hotel, and must say she had really lost her nerve on that guy for his over helpness to her. The resort room was quiet large and four of us easily accommodated, the two girls slept in the other room. Both these rooms had some distance in between. I doubt the resort had any more occupants, it wasn’t that a perfect season time yet. So six of us, in a small village resort, with one girl freaked out of some haunting image.

I went to bed quickly after the dinner but for the fridge noise, frosting- defrosting. As, I went to deep sleep I felt some one knocking the door. Somehow I got up (had to, as I came to know next morning, none of the connoisseurs even had slight idea that someone knocked their door) to open the door to see both the girls. Now, at about 2 am in the morning both really seemed freaked out, Nidhi more so as she claimed that the hotel help was calling their room number and disturbing them. Half awake then, I just down played the incident and tried providing some confidence. Nupur had a request then- sleep in our room!! Must say, I came to all my senses then. Somehow at times I think girls are at an advantage, they can simply ask any unusual favour from a guy which may not be as simple as it looks. I wouldn’t have minded if I had known these girls for sometime but ours was a day’s introduction and more than that I firmly believed there was no one calling that room but for some wild imaginations. If there had some liquor left, I would have made Nidhi consume it and have made her go to bed as all others were. But,
I had no options but to carry my bed in dark to the other room.

I switched on the light in the bathroom. Their fridge was noisier than the one in the other room. Both girls slept and amidst all the noise of the fridge, I was trying to gather on some lost sleep. The fridge though was really disturbing and I kept on a while thinking of switching it off. But then, I was frightened to get up for Nidhi’s sake. Somehow I felt she might be in half sleep and just might again freak out shouting seeing a guy in her room. But then my sleep got better of my notion and I just got up to switch off the fridge. Thankfully, could sleep for some time then.

As expected, no one in the other room had an idea of all the events during the night, and people say drinking is a bad habit!!

We quickly got ready for the morning safari. We had the guide and the jeep in place and were raring to go to catch the glimpse of the tiger. Amidst all of these, I had plenty of water in the morning and just could not locate any loo at the gate. Awwh, that hurt. No one is allowed to get off the jeep in the jungle at any cost. You can’t attend the natural call even when you are so close to the nature!! We almost spent two hours in the jungle without the sight of the tiger, and I was just looking forward to reach the base camp from where we had to register for the elephant safari. Those two hours, I just felt a tank was about to burst anytime. The guide was at his peak abilities to showcase each bit of the jungle. Finally, when we got to the camping area in midst of the jungle, I headed the toilet. I peed for quiet sometime, much longer that I noticed a few who came later than me to complete the job and go, but I was still standing there, emptying my abdomen.

Finally, we had the sight of a tigress, atop an elephant. The tigress and the large cubs just had a kill for breakfast and with their stomach full they seemed in pleasant mood posing for all the people clicking pics. Such a fantastic sight it was to see the tiger from such a close range in wild.

We came back to Gondia that day evening to attend Daisy’s marriage. Had never seen a barat with people carrying the lamps (could imagine the ‘cholro mint’ ad showing a barat). Overall it turned out to be a fantastic trip; new people, new experiences and then the tiger in wild. Blissful moments.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Caught in-between slow, simple life of hometown and the other way in Mumbai

A life here and a life there…
heart here, mind there
peace here, money there
maa here, friends there
a child here, man there
mom’s food here, dabba there
few intrude here, many there
space here, thronged there
home here, flat there
can pause here, always rush there
can personal meet here, phone & email there
life which way ???
well, somewhere here & there

Hometown is always close to heart particularly for us nomad’s who have left home. We have help built a living there, but then we are not there to enjoy it!!! As is the new hometown, without it out how can we make a living?

tweet-tweet: @ Delhi. Dil ki Dilli. Noticing people, the way of life at the Capital. More to blog on. Thanks PwC, m learning more than my job