Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Thanks, Mumbai

I have been wanting to write about my brief-visit (insisting on that brief part, you'll know why soon) to Mumbai for quite sometime now. But somehow, couldn't take the time out for that and I also regret not keeping up with so many of my fellow blogmates posts. I guess, I'll try my best to do that now. Before I start with my travelogue (I take the liberty to use that word here), I have to acknowledge a few things.

Acknowledgment :

Thanks, Konkan Railways for providing an extraordinary journey, keeping myself always in awe passing through the tunnels which seemed like forever, passing over the bridges which gives Kutub Minar a competition and finally providing an easy commutation between the two states.

Thanks, E. Sreedharan and you know why.

Thanks to all my coup mates in helping us giving the exact directions to the IIT. For telling us what suburb train to take and which stop we should get down.

Thanks, EP (Tudymol's Brother) for always being there whenever I get lost in a place. I know, he in turn would thank google for that.

Thanks, Abhi and Dhyaan for helping us find accomodation in the campus itself. And Abhi for showing us IDC which made my trip all the more memorable.

Thanks Autorickshawalas.

And finally Thanks to IIT Mumbai for giving me an opportunity to visit such a wonderful place.


Metros have always lured me. Chennai is more like a second home, not because of the no. of visits I made, but because of my affinity for the Tamil, the people and of course Kollywood. I went to Delhi during my 9th grade. The fact that almost all the intellectual icons of Kerala have once lived in Delhi and have written and rewritten about the place and also because of its historical significance, I was easily attracted. That left me with Mumbai and Kolkata.

Do I have to visit Kolkata to like it? No. Its just like asking a communist why you like Cuba or China. We don't have any reasons, we just blindly love it. I donno if communists of China or Cuba do know the existence of such states in India. Anyways leave it. Howrah Bridge, Durga Puja are enough reasons for me to like Kolkata even more. But Mumbai always gave me a mix of emotions. Although it had a historical background which was enough to lure me but more recent events of Shiv sainiks and MNS took me by fear. Are we even welcome there?

I took the opportunity of attending the GD of IIT-B, just because it was going to be one of the last family tours I do before my spinsterhood ends.

There could be nothing more pissing off than a train not passing through Palakkad station and Konkan train does exactly the same. So we had to go to Shoranur station to board the train. We sneak peeked into a cousin's house in Shoranur during the 3 hours we had to wait there. It's kind of weird to find that almost all of my nephews and nieces have more height than me. And that I would totally be a chotu amongst them. :( (Well, a cousin of mine blames her parents for her poor height and always questions why they married each other. I'm atleast happy Amma married Achan thereby giving me atleast 5'1" unlike my cousin's 4'10" )

I just love travelling in train. The cribbing is almost like a music. And most of my creative thoughts pops up when I'm travelling. Although we can travel in AC class for free, I hate it. Not just because I have never got accustomed to sleep under AC but also because of the passengers there. They are totally hostile. I donno why people have such an 'attitude' while travelling in AC. Because they can afford it? Duh Huh. It's so sick. And the way they look at the Sleeper Class passengers, as if they are second class citizens. Dumb Asses. Having heard a lot about the Konkan Railways, I didn't wanted to miss the sceneries sitting in an AC compartment and insisted on taking Sleeper Class tickets. But unfortunately the train had very bad timings, making it pass through Goa in the night which literally made me be frown. Anyways, one day I hope to travel again at better timings and make up to it.

The tunnels are a specialty of the Konkans. Most of 'em stretching like forever. And its so noisy at times. But all the while I was admiring the similarity between the two states. Kerala and Maharashtra. Houses were similar. The flora seemed to be similar. So whats the difference all about. And what are we fighting for?

And then of course, its the Indian Railways I'm travelling in. So it was no surprise when the engine failed just before Ratnagiri and that too inside a tunnel. You can imagine the horror of being suffocated to death. Ok, that part was a little too much. And we reached LTT by 8 in the evening. By then we had too much of information on how to reach to the IIT. Taking a slow train to Kanjurmarg. Even IIT's site cried aloud about that.

Taking the suburb train was also an eventful thing. Well, I have travelled in loco trains in Chennai but this was something so different. People were coming in and out of the station just like the rats in the Pied Piper story. Literally population explosion. But I must confess, I loved it. For that matter, I had always loved crowd. And in our second train from Kurla to Kanjurmarg, we saw a pair standing too cozy. The girl was too cute for that awful guy. I just had a brief look on them and then turned facing oustide. I could see Amma totally anguished. Anyways, there was an middle-aged guy staring at them, and then the girl showered on him some Sanskrit Verses. LOL :)

I was on for a surprise when the autorickwalas took just the amount in the meter to IIT. Apparently, some of the autos in Palakkad don't even have meters, let alone seeing a working meter.

Abhi had made all the arrangements for us to stay at the hostel. Me and Amma would be in the girl's hostel and Bro and Achan would be in Abhi's hostel. It was so sweet of him to arrange all that, particularly because we never had met before. When I first saw Dhyaan(Abhi's friend who also helped us in finding the accomodation), I thought I had seen her before. Later I understood I felt so just because she had immense similarity to Rachel Leigh Cook.

The hostel appeared totally abandoned, but alas, then I realised it's IIT which is famous for nerds and you don't expect 'em to come out of their rooms. The only relief came as a girl who came out to watch a serial in TV.

Anyways the next day we had breakfast from a small restaurant opposite the girls hostel. One thing that Achan can't get enough of is Puri. He wouldn't even like to go to a hotel which doesn't serve Puris. As for this time, it was very hard to convince him that Bhelpuri and Paanipuri are not the Puri he thinks of. He was going on staring at the menu board. We finally managed to get him a Masala Dosa.

Don't even expect me to write anything about how the GD and Interview was. In simple words it was awful. And nothing more. But important thing is that they treated us with a Sandwich and Puff which naturally made IITB climb to the top of the MY list of good colleges. But there was a guy totally hitting on me. He even offered me to give a music certificate for free since I had none in co-curricular activities. It was entertainment after all.

It was almost 6 when I finished my interview. And then we went near the Powai Lake. Got some pics, but it became too dark then. The evening walk in the campus reminded me of our company campus, the only difference being that IIT was more Indian and the company being more phoren owing to the imported palm trees.

We, with Abhi went to a hotel near by and had our dinner from there. The jinx of not having Naan was finally broken. With Paneer Butter Masala and Vegetable Kadai, the whole travel to Mumbai suddenly became worthy. After the dinner, Abhi took us to the IDC, Industrial Design Centre where he's a first year student. A glance into the building I knew its going to be a very hard journey if I were to ever make to it there. I'm putting some pics here.

In the centre of the building, there is a 'Circle of Design' where projects and other stuffs are presented. But because of the poor lighting, I couldn't take its picture. Even the staircase had something to talk about. There was a recent conference on Maintaining Human Resource in the Corporate world. The same was depicted on the steps of the staircase. In the begining, i.e. the ground floor, you can see the footprints of many animals and as you climb up you will find the number of footprints reducing. And in the topmost floor, you will only find the footprints of a human who then eventually turn into an highly skilled man depicted by the prints of the shoes. Great thinking , what else to say.

Abhi even showed his classroom. It would only be meaningful if I say that is an ideas-emerging-room.

So the next day we came back to the LTT and then the most disheartening thing. I wasn't having a window seat! And we were sitting amidst old people surviving on pills! And the old people who had conquered the window seat wouldn't even open the windows! Great!! I slipped myself to the upper berth, took "The Appeal" by John Grisham. By the way, I didn't like the book at all. I like happy endings, but this book is about the cruel reality. I'm yet to sink in to the tragic climax of the book.

So that was my trip to Mumbai. I never visited any place nor did I do any shopping. But at the end of all I knew I am loving Mumbai. I love the people there for being so helpful. And I'm in complete love for IIT-Bombay. And I hope if I go again to Mumbai, I'm not settling down for a brief-visit again.

P.S. :- You could visit Abhi's blogs and view his creations here, here or here.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Tag Anyways!!

Guys am back! Back from my brief-Mumbai visit. Was scratching my head to write about my 2 day stay there, but alas, my thinking cap has gone somewhere. So, I'm taking up BF's tag which has been pending for a few weeks, so that I can brush up my brain (if there's one). And Thanks BF.

1. What is your current obsession?
Snakes..the game in my mobile. I just reached the level 19.

2. What are you wearing today?
Salwar Kameez.

3. What’s for dinner?
Roti with a mushroom curry. I'm looking for the recipe online. Damn!! Its difficult to cook.

4. What’s the last thing you bought?
Hmmm.... Halwa.*Slurrp*

5. What are you listening to right now?
The occasional grudges of the CPU. Even that sounds like a music.

6. What do you think about the person who tagged you?
Yeah, BF...He's a little bossy. But writes amazingly humourous stuff. Can't find him these days. May be he's a bit too busy for the blogspot.

7. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
No confusion, its here in Railyway Colony. I would always prefer those bungalows where DRM and DCM live. (We're planning to leave to our hometown by next month, so be ready for another round of a senti post.)

8. What are your must-have pieces for summer?
I'm not going anywhere, I'm staying at home. People here are dying of sunstroke. So I guess, a fan would suffice plus ofcourse, an uninterrupted supply of electricity to make the fan work.

9. If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Kashmir, perhaps.. I have been wanting to visit there for a long time now.

10. Which language do you want to learn?
I'm too bad with languages. 6 months in B'lore and I learned only Enjoy Maadi.

11. What’s your favourite quote?
"I believe in reincarnation, So I've left all my money to myself"- Tony Blackburn (So you know what I'm going to do when I earn money)

12. Who do you want to meet right now?
None right now. Enjoying the solitude.

13. What is your favourite colour?
Blue.. Sky. Ocean. Kingfisher. Blue-the band and more

14. Give us 3 styling tips that work for you.
Safety Pins. 1. Holds your dupatta onto your salwar, 2. helps you sometimes with your broken chappal at a busy time, 3. helps you when your amazingly good backseat neighbour at a theatre try to pinch you.

15. What is your dream job?
What if I say IAS. Hmm.... An Architect. Wait..... Website Designer.....Hmmm...Forget it Yaar.

16. What’s your favorite magazine?
I'm not the Cosmo-Women's Era type girl. I like Outlook, Frontline, Newsweek, India Today. Anything Political.

17. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
Books. Jeffery Archer and John Grisham, I want their complete collection. I don't want to spend money on good-looking books, I prefer pirates.

18. What do you consider a fashion faux pas?
Fashion Weeks. Who wears them anyways!

19. Who according to you is the most over-rated style icon?
Cricketers. Everyone. (May be not Sachin. But everyone else.)

20. What kind of haircut do you prefer?
pehle hair cut karne ki permission dila do meri Amma se, phir yeh question answer karenge.

21. What are you going to do after this?
What's the next movie in HBO?

22. What are your favourite movies?
You've Got Mail, When Harry Met Sally, Pirates of Carribean (All parts), While You Were Sleeping....Lots are there...list is too long.

23. What inspires you?
Rang De Basanti. Everytime the movie ends, I (used to) study for a full hour. I guess, I need to buy its DVD.

24. What do your friends call you most commonly?
Di Communi....That "di" comes out of respect.

25. Would you prefer coffee or tea?
I love Tea. Plus I make awesome tea.

26. What do you do when you are feeling low or terribly depressed?
Listen to some Hard Rock. Sad and melody songs depress me more.

27. What makes you go wild?
Idea Star Singer. Everytime I'm tortured to sit through the show, you can see the wild-me.

28. Which other blogs do you love visiting?
All the blogs I'm following.

29. Favorite Dessert/Sweet?
Chocolate Sundae. I can skip a meal for that.

30. How many tabs are turned on in ur browser right now?
Five. 3 blogs + my dashboard+ mushroom masala recipe

31. Favorite Season?
Towards the mid of every season, I tend to hate it. So none.

32.Whats ur current facebook status msg?
"No, I'm not watchin IPL!"

33. What is the right way to avoid people who purposefully hurt you?
Forgive, Forget, Ignore.

34. What are you afraid of the most?
Shopping for others except my brother. He's kinda used to my selection.

35. When you looked at yourself in the mirror today, what was the first thing you thought?
I totally suck!!!!

36. What brings a smile on your face instantly?
Food, Good Food and Great Food.

37. A word that you say a lot?
I used to use "whatever" a lot. But now I'm stuck with "already".

38. Tell us a bad PJ u heard recently??
How to write a C program to prevent Titanic from sinking...
Declare the variable Titanic as "float"

Rules for those who are tagged:
Respond and rework – answer these questions on your blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own, and add one more question to the list. Then tag few new set of people.

I tag:
Kelly (A reminder that you've a blog)
Lakshmi (same as above)
Raji (Chechi, try this)
Harini (Would like to know how you answer these)
Scarlet(I don't know if you write tags, but would like to hear from you)
Blunt Edges (And you've been tagged again)
Neha (Here's one more tag to your list)