Friday, 28 December 2012

A Journey – my entry to the GetPublished contest

This is a contest for writing a love story, if chosen; I get to be one of the authors in a collection of love stories published by HarperCollins. 

I always wanted to write a love story, a compilation of all my mistakes and experiences, so this is a good opportunity for me. Just for the sake of it I googled about love. It showed me quotes on love, I read through them and I liked this one...

“I love you without knowing how or when or from where. I love you simply, without problems or pride. I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate, that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate, that when I fall asleep your eyes close.” 
By Pablo Neruda

Love, I feel embalms a lot of feelings, a word that describes a lot of emotions, yet no one can explain what it really means. Poets, scholars and writers have written about love and yet can’t explain the depths of it. 

Out of curiosity I checked Wikipedia for the meaning of love. It states, “Love is an emotion of a strong affection and personal attachment. Love is also said to be a virtue, representing all of human kindness, compassion and affection.” It also states, “Love refers to a variety of different feelings, states and attitudes, ranging from pleasure to interpersonal attraction.” I guess love even confuses them.

My story Line...
Once or twice a year Anup took a train journey to Delhi and back. He was an architect living in Kochi, doing well in his field but his personal life was different. He had always been a quite person or in other words, an introvert. He was not lonely neither was he craving to fall in love. He had not met the right one, that was his excuse. 

This story is about the journey that changed his life forever. He meets Ancy who is young, beautiful and talkative.All that Anup is not. What would an introverted Anup do about his feeling for her? And where would it lead him?

 “Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice but falling in love with you was beyond my control."

My story includes incidents from my personal life, as well as experiences of my friends. I hope I am allowed to tell my story.

"This is my entry for the HarperCollins–IndiBlogger Get Published contest, which is run with inputs from Yashodhara Lal and HarperCollins India."

Friday, 2 March 2012

Rafting In Rishikesh

I can’t swim as well as I can drown, to be frank I am a lot afraid of open waters, so when my wife came up with the idea of going for rafting, I was suspicious of her. I thought I better inform the nearby police station that my wife is planning on killing me.

I am also courageous (or maybe too dumb), so I agreed to go for it, after all I am brave when I have a life jacket on me. 

Well he is too brave with the life jacket on; he probably thinks he gets superpowers from it. I love water and I'm always game for any kind of water sports, so I was excited to find out about rafting in Rishikesh. I have tried learning swimming from friends and I do swim a little bit, I'm a very confident swimmer with the life jacket on. :). When the guide stopped the raft at a place with not many whirlpools, giving us an opportunity to swim in the deep water of Ganga, I jumped out without a second thought. I'd been up in Uttarkashi for a month and had been taking refreshing dips in the freezing cold water in the Ganga almost every day, so I was used to the temperature of the water by now, unlike Ranjit. He had just joined me just a few days before this rafting expedition.

I was enjoying the cold waters and the exhilarating feeling that I was floating in the middle of the deep waters. The two guys who had jumped down with me decided to go back in as the current started to get stronger. As I said, I love water, I wasn't ready to go back in and the guide too didn't think it was necessary as I was keeping up with the raft. But as the current got stronger I was finding it hard to keep up with the raft. I started to panic when the raft was getting out of sight. But then I thought the guides would slow down for me which they probably were but the water current just swept me along with it. Ranjit who is scared of the waters and who has never had cold water bath in his life, jumped in to water like superman to save me. I panicked more when I saw him in the water but he did manage to help me get back in the raft.

Rafting or white water rafting is a fun sports, it uses an inflatable raft to carry you across the river. Rafting has different grades, the higher the grade, the harder the course. We went on a grade 4 in Rishikesh. The highest is grade six, so I was in for a big challenge.

We were in a team of ten including two guide (experts in rafting). It began slow and started to get wild, the river was throwing us in different directions, we where paddling for our lives, water spraying all over our faces and the only way we survived was due to the instruction we received from our guides.

We had a great adrenaline rush driving those waves. The course was great because in between we got to rest too. I won’t say rest for sure because it was more like we got to jump of a steep rock face over 4 meter of the water. I jumped of it twice and my wife always two steps ahead of me took one jump more than me. 

Fear is something that drives us not to take part in these activities but once you get over the fear, I swear you’re going to have the most fun. Let me tell u once again, I can't swim but the life jacket does its work, so don’t worry and if you see rafting anywhere, I suggest you go for it.

The funny part of this ride was we had a kid with us, about the age of 12 or so yrs, sitting right in front of the boat holding onto to it as tightly as possible, praying out loud "Jai Mata Di" all the while.

                                             Live life to the fullest...                                                                   

Monday, 20 February 2012

Must Have Toys For The Rich

A dusty wind whirls around on the tarmac of the air field as the helicopter moves in to touch down. Our hero opens the door and steps out in slow motion. His hairs falling across his face as people come up to greet him. They lead him to his sports car; he opens the door of the car, rev the engine and drives away as the sun goes down in the back ground.

This is a scene where the rich hero plays in almost every movie, so what does it tell us. People with a lot of money should have two items in their arsenal; just because it makes their life look cool or maybe to vent some steam or maybe because there is too much money lying around. You probably might have guessed by now what those two things are, one is a very fast car and the other is a flying machine, like a helicopter or a plane. 

I decided I too should own a fast car and a helicopter, so I sold everything I had, begged a bit more and then pleaded with people to lend me some more money. Finally with all of that I went out and brought myself a car and a helicopter. Don’t be surprised, I am now a proud owner of a brand new car and helicopter that can be fully controlled with a remote. Of course, they are very small versions of the real thing, some people might even call it toys but then that is what I ended up with, neither did I had the money nor did I get a role in the movie (thou I still really feel I should have). 

Anyway, I am happy with it (probably because I can’t afford the real thing). 

Monday, 6 February 2012

Club Mahindra Scam

Every mall you have ever been too, you probably have come across this one person who wants you to fill a form for Club Mahindra which is also a lucky draw coupon. A few might walk away like me (the only reason being, I have filled it before and I know what comes after) but I am sure most will fill the form, lucky draw coupons are too enticing to resist the temptations. 

The reason why I am writing about this is, I travel a lot with my wife and I am looking out for travel information on TV or newspapers or even on the internet. Lately I have come across this TV program in Fox Traveller called Ultimate Travel Scam. It's about scams played on travellers causing loss of money or belongings. In one of the episodes I came across a scam quite close to this, which I then told my wife and she suggested I write about this as a post, so that I let people know about it.

What happened to me was, I filled the form like a lot of you. Within a few days I got a call saying that I won a prize, it was a trip for two, 2 days and 3 nights in Munnar. The only way I could collect the prize was by bring my wife along for a lecture to their office. Since I was single then, I did not go.

Once again after a few months I came across this lucky draw coupon and this time I won again (I am so damn lucky). The prize was still 2 days and 3 nights at Munnar. This time I thought, I should not let the prize slip through my hands, so I took my girlfriend along pretending to be my wife. I attend the lecture with her, from the beginning I was persuaded, enticed and even seduced into taking up their club membership with drinks and royal treatment.

My idea as I walked into the office was to take the free vacation I got as a prize and leave but since I was in such a situation where I was treated well and made to feel like I am going to have a good time as a member of their club, they expected something out of me, to which I responded that I wanted my vacation and that’s all (they probably have never meet a guy like me, who is too stingy to part with money). Finally, giving up, they left me a phone number to call and book my vacation.

I called a couple of times, the brochures are coming and that’s always the answer, so I finally just gave up. I then searched for Club Mahindra and came across lots of people been tricked like me. People who have taken up the membership also face problems like booking for their vacations and hidden charges. Beware of it.

So next time you see these people, walk away or if you want to have fun and win a prize, fill the form.

Monday, 30 January 2012

Paintball Shooting Arena


Men love gun, guns would end any argument at an instant. The best way to settle a fight would be to duel with guns, so when I saw a paintball shooting arena in Mahabaleshwar in Satara district, which is  in  Maharashtra. I just had to pull my car over and have an argument with my wife.

We walked into the arena, which was a small ground covered with nets all around and sand bags placed as to provide bunker like feeling. We paid for guns and found ourselves been covered in over alls and protections for our vital parts. 

They split us into groups, me leading one team and my wife on the other. The idea was to get to our opponents target without being shot. We were given paintball guns which sprayed colour on contact with the body. We had a lot of fun trying to hit each other, jumping like military men from one bunker to the other, hiding and shooting when possible. 

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