Saturday, December 31, 2005

The Great Goan Escape Ends - Day 6

I get up early this time and decide to explore the place on foot. I walk through Calangute and Baga route. Ate at this English breakfast joint that served nice toasts and eggs at "over the roof" prices. Considering my expertise with eggs, I thought about opening my own bread and egg joint here and try becoming a millionaire ;)

I keep walking for another hour till I get hungry again. So then I stop at Subway and have a delicious 6 inch tuna sub. I got replenished and then met up with Ray and Kates at cafe Coffee day. We decide to camp at Baga beach again. Some more friends join us there and we get ourselves a shack of chairs and umbrellas. We have some good food and just lazed on our chairs. Ray went jet skiing and Kates pulled his disappearing act again!

Finally it was time to call it a trip! Ray dropped me at the bus stand and I got a bus to Panjim. Then to my utter dismay, I found that I had been put on the last row of a rickety flat bus. I pleaded with the conductor to give me another seat but he refused saying other seats were for families!! This was ridiculous but had to bite my teeth and hope for the best :( Ultimately, it was a "highway to hell" ride all the way back to Pune! I was riding a camel which had a cryogenic rocket attached to it posterior. What an end to the trip!!!

Overall it was an adventurous and awesome trip! I got a nice tan and some fresh air onto my lungs. Apart from the entertainment, I also got to learn a bit of Konkani and history/culture of Goa. Keep Goa on your cards next time you think of a wholesome trip!!

The Great Goan Escape - Day 5

Day 5 was gonna be one of the most tiresome of days. We guys decided to get some bikes to travel around. Called up this guy I had met a couple of days back and drove to his garage. He had an assortment of bikes ranging from enfields to activas. We decided on an enfield 350cc. The bike had amazing power and made a sweeet sound! But unfortunately, its cluch plate was not good and it gave jerks at high speeds. So we returned it and compromised for a Yamaha Rx135.

Then did we zoom all over the place. We kept riding and riding like there was nothing more fun to do :) It was Ray and me on the bike and we took turns. Ray is a good rider and taught me some neat biking tricks like front wheeling! We also talked about back wheeling but you need a great bike and amazing brakes for that. Plan to try them on my honda sometime.

We met up with Ray's relatives and then had food at Dominos pizza. This is my favorite pizza joint and the last time I was there was back in uncle sam's land!! Then we headed towards South Anjuna beach. Boy, was there a crowd there! We found out that today was the famous wednesday flea market and there was hordes of people and traffic jams. We somehow made it to Ray's friends place there and then walked through the market. It was a makeshift setup and found some interesting things. After a while we met up with Kates at Anjuna beach. This kates bugger always pulls a disappearing act. We see him a moment and the next moment hez gone somewhere. We guys then decide to ditch him and bike of to meet more of Ray's relatives. I had dinner at the hotel they were staying and helped myself to 3 helpings of an amazing honey nut ice cream from Baskin@31 Robbins.

I decided to call it a day again while my friends decided to club, this time at club cabana, the disc on a hill with a lighthouse!

Friday, December 30, 2005

The Great Goan Escape - Day 4

I woke up at around 9 AM as I had to checkout of this temporary accomodation by 10 AM. Got myself a cold quick shower and a shave. Then of I went towards Baga beach with a bag and my broad straw hat protecting me from the scorching sun. This time I was alone waiting for my engg friends to arrive in the evening. Time was moving at a snails pace :(

On my way to the beach, I stopped at a browsing center just to kill time. I managed to stay there for an hour blogging one of my earlier posts. Then at the beach I got a laid back chair and an umbrella to rest. I got lucky too and had some company speaking to this firangi babe, atleast till her boyfriend arrived ;) Had a dip in the sea and took some panoramic photos and videos. I was too lazy to go to the restaurant and so ordered food to be brought to my chair.

After a while, I went back to the Internet cafe and killed some more time. Finally, my friends landed in Goa from Hyd and asked me to come to their hotel. I then met up with my engg buddies Ray and Kates. Ray had come with his family and friends. We guys then walked along baga beach enjoying the dusk and the cool breeze. I moved to Rays place and spent the nite there while all others partied at club Titos. I just wanted to sleep peacefully and was not interested in clubbing anymore!

The Great Goan Escape - Day 3

Another bright sunny day and we decide to go to Anjuna beach. The South part of it is most secluded and we reach there after asking a 100 people directions and following some firangis who were on bikes. Biking is a very popular means of transport as the roads are extremely narrow. But do people drive crazy and fast there! We saw a Maruti omni do a 180 flip into a stream just in front of us. Luckily, no one was seriously hurt as the van was perched between two boulders and did not fall into the bed.

So the beach was colourful and calm. We debated if we wanted to play some sport there. The gals who were with us wanted to go to Baga, the more crowded beach and so of we went. While at Anjuna, I couldnot resist buying a drum. Ive decided to learn some tap tap beats that I can showcase next time ;)

At baga, me and pk went and purchased a volleyball while others were at the beach. My muscles were so flexed and tired that I got myself a nice massage done. It was so very relaxing and rejuvenating. By the time we were all done, we had to get a shower. My friends were all leaving back to Pune while I decided to stay back to meet up with my engg. friends. Its been long since I saw them and we really wanted to catch up. We all had a shower in a open area with a pipe. It was comical as the guy owning it did not want us to use any water than was required. So he was watching us shower and kept controlling the water flow. It was chaotic as there was soap all over us and water came according to his discretion!

We then had one of the finest candle light dinners by the beach. We were facing the sea with the high tide waves splashing meters away from us. I had a toast of seafood and the famous Goan pheni. There was some nice fireworks and tightrope walking just as we finished our dinner. I finally bid adieu to my office friends and found a place to stay with a Goan family as a paying guest.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Great Goan Escape - Day 2

Day 2 started of with us waking late again. This time we went shopping to the Calangute market. As Raj had put it we'd become true Page 3 celebs. We wake up late, do shopping till night and then party at the club till early morning. I would hate to do this every day or every week, but its fun to live it up once in a while. We went looking around for mementos and clothes. It was a long walk up and down the stretch of shops. While we returned to our starting point, we could not find our qualis. So of we went, me and pk, in search for it. Finally, much to my relief, I found it parked near some mela not too far from us.

A lot of us did not like the music that was played at Titos yesterday. So we decided to try La Calypso, a disc with the famous DJ Aqeel from Mumbai on the roll. We also found out that there would be some good hindi music. I was not all that excited after the tiresome two days but decided to give it a try. It was fun and everyone enjoyed it. The crowd was all desi considering the genre of music being played. I was kinda hungry, so slipped through the crowd to enjoy a stomach filling buffet :) Only when my stomach is happy, am I happy. After that, I was so full that I could move no more and so went to the park to sleep on a makeshift bed made of three chairs!

DJ Aqeel played some good new hindi remixes. He was involving the crowd well and kept talking through the songs. After he went DJ Piyush came and was boring. So we decided to call it a night and went to the hotel to have a peaceful well deserved sleep!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The Great Goan Escape - Day 1

We reached Vagator, Goa and checked into our Hotel Palm Grove early at around 9 AM. We did have a temporary confusion trying to make the hotel owner understand how long we had booked to stay.The middle-man quack we had contacted in Pune had been playing games with us. But all was sorted and we got 2 rooms for the guys n gals. Then did we sleep like a log till early afternoon. We were dead tired from the journey.

We then went to Baga beach, the most crowded and happening beach in North Goa. This place and all the other fun spots had been the capital of Goa during the Portugese rule till 1961 after which Panjim became the center of Indian Goa. So of we went swimming in the Arabian sea and banana boat riding. Later at night we went to the best trance/techno disc in goa called Titos. We partied till late 4 am. The music was not of my type nor my friends but the crowd was amazing. I did have a good time there with the highlight being a fire dance by a Czech couple.

Monday, December 26, 2005

The Great Goan Escape - Takeoff

Goa has always been in my mind as a "must do" holiday. So when we got a week long holiday for Xmas and New Year, this was it! My office colleagues planned a 3 day trip till the day after Xmas while my engineering friends a 5 day trip till New Year. Fortunately for me, they were two disparate sets. I just had to spent a nite by myself.

So of we went, the seven of us, on a qualis. The ride was bumpy initially a precursor to what was to come. We went on as to how the Pune-Bangalore highway should be good and top priority for development. Then voila, the toll booths appeared and the road got real smooth. The downside was that the booths appeared every 45 mins and they did shell quite some money out of us.
We stopped for dinner at a roadside dhaba and had some of the worst cooked chicken and mutton. On top of all he took 1.5 hrs to just prepare them. Talk about time to cook burned food and how they would have tasted better! Ofcourse my stomach agreed with me a 100 percent on the quality of food I ate. The road conspired too and became circular and windy. After a lot of restrain I had to stop the qualis to try puke out the crap I ate. But for my friend's saunf, I would have turned back and spared you the pain of reading my blog.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Love, war and peace

Joy and festiveness shattered,
By a single moment of outrage.
Is it even necessary to express,
anger and emotion through violence?

The pretty six year old had a long life ahead.
Grandma wanted to just be with the little ones.
Shopkeepers were looking to go home sweet home
Urchins and homeless were just enjoying the lights.
Everybody out there was in a festive mood,
All of them happy in their own very way!

Then came the sharp stinging blow that shook all,
The devil himself had set foot upon earth.
It was loud, gruesome and painful.
And it took away everything small and big!
Dreams were broken, love was lost,
future disappeared and darkness descended.

So there is a reason for everything in this world.
What can be the reason for this carnage?
Somebody wanted to make a statement, fine!
Now that they have, what have they achieved, seriously!
Will they get what they want by doing this,
or keep doing this till mankind is all wiped out!

People have forgotten Mahatma Gandhi,
Be it a Pakistani, Indian or Bangladeshi.
The very pillar of non-violence had liberated us
from the crutches of slavery in our own land.
He needs to descend upon the hearts of all people again
Dispelling the omnipresent hatred and vengeance.

Please heal the world o'mighty bappuji!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Pre-Elementary Childhood

Hmmmm! says the third grade music teacher giving her wide eyed raised eyebrow kathakali look at me. It was the recitation class and we chintus were trying our best to be heard. It was the competition of who sings the loudest for us but our teacher thought otherwise.

I used to be a very brawn and naughty kid @ school. Some of my accomplishments range from biting teachers, flinging rubber band bullets, giving meano looks and pulling hair at unsuspecting times. That was the 'Bring it on" kiddo me.

Ofcourse, I did grow out of it to turn out to be a responsible and dependable young man..ahem, but the childhood days still fill me with fleeting but fun memories. The only thing that concerns you is what you see at the moment. There is no reasoning or logic applied to your day to day activities.

There was this time when people use to give direcions to my apartment complex. Go straight and take a right turn. Its this four storey building where a kid cries really loud!!

Wow, didnt I make quite an impression?!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The 7 Thingy

ttgiant has tagged me to writeup sev7en things.
Here they are,

Seven things I plan to do before I die:

1. Not die
2. Star trek the universe
3. Convince some people that Dil To Pagal Hai is not a good movie.
4. Play the 2 minute solo of November rain on my guitar
5. Para-dive
6. Build a testbed computer network
7. Extreme sport skate

Seven things that I can do:

1. Be crazy
2. Be serious
3. Show of my muscles
4. Ride 70+ kms of the ghats on my honda
5. Dream big
6. speak seven different languages on a regular basis.
7. Top score the Bill Gates pie toss game

Seven things that I can't do:

1. Sit idle
2. Whistle loud
3. Jump like the Hulk
4. Convert my far fetched dreams into reality
5. Read Agatha Christie
6. Ballet dance
7. Make sense of George Bush

Seven things that attracts me to the opposite sex:

1. Creativity
2. Pragmatic
3. Independent
4. Athleticism
5. Optimistic
6. Broad minded
7. Fun n playful

Seven things I say the most:

1. Awesome
2. Whats up
3. Thats ridiculous
4. Bull crap
5. Abey yaar
6. Bakwas
7. You the man

Seven celebrities I want to meet:

1. Arnold Schwarzenegger
2. Mel Gibson
3. Nicole Kidman
4. Bruce Schneier
5. Michael Schumacher
6. Jon Bon Jovi
7. APJ Abdul Kalam

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Crazy bachelors

There are usually people around in my office during the night, some working hard and others who appear to be working hard. There are still others who come to office for PR purposes. I flip between 'appear to be working hard' and 'PR' categories.

Since Wednesday was Vinayaka Chaturthi and a holiday, there was hardly anyone in office on Tuesday night. Me and my roomie Nike were dead bored when we decided to go to mumbai for the heck of it. We took of from my bike at around 11:45 pm when the sensible lazy bone in our brain told us we were nuts! Instead lets go to this nice eatery near Pune station. Alright, we go towards it when we come close to a theater. Hey hey hang on..wats fun in eating food, we do that everyday screamed our 'gimme a break' brain-bone. Fine, so we pit stopped at the theater. There was this movie No Entry running and trusting wat my gym friends told me, we bought the tickets. After entering the theater we realized the blunder we made. It was a salman shirtless khan movie! Our wise-brain bone signaled danger in all directions. We were ready to hit the door when we heard the crowd laughing.

We sat on to watch the movie and man was it a roller coaster ride! I was suspended in mid air with fits of laughter right through the movie. Hey junta do not ever miss out No Entry!

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Dark matter

Ever wondered if there was someone sitting next to you and you did not even know. We live in a three-dimensional world where every visual object is represented by an X, Y and Z coordinate. There have also been arguments on a fourth coordinate "time", based on which your other three coordinates can change.

Have you ever wondered why only three coordinates? Does the theory of an n dimensional universe hold water? We the humans are on the ever-growing lookout for aliens, organisms from other worlds. Are we looking in the right direction? What if we cannot sense them? They could be living right with us but on a different dimension. This has been beautifully explained in Michael Crichton's Sphere, one of my all time favorite books.

Recently, some astrophysicists have discovered up to 6 dimensions. They are basing this claim on the fact that there is some invisible dark matter that is having a gravitational affect on stars. 85% of the mass of the universe accounts for this dark matter. This invisible dark matter could be something visible on a different dimension. More on the article here.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Say no to Okay

The word okay is a overloaded and ambiguous word used for right about anything. The difference can be in the tone at which it is said or written.

It is apparently the single most used word in the world due to its simplicity and adoption in a number of other languages. It originated from the abbreviation O.K. and not the corollary.

The usage can be very tricky,

"He is okay"

What does that mean?
He is good and not exceptional.
He is average and not good.
He is poor but not terrible.
He is terrible but not evil. me!

Husband: I have got some urgent work and so am cancelling our dinner plans.
Wife: "Okay"

Yes? Think about it? Maybe? As you wish? No way?

Beats me again!!

Picture this.

President Bush is talking to his Secretary of Defense over the phone,

Bush: Hello
Secretary: Hello Mr.President
Bush: So what have you got?
Secretary: Need permission to deploy and fire.
Bush: Okay (Secretary launches nuke and starts world war III), what did you just say??

"Okay" is neither yes or no. It can mean so many different things
and is still so commonly used. It leads to confusion and chaos.
Its usage should thus be abolished

And thank god 'okay' is not a keyword in modern programming languages.

Lets work towards banning it!Okay?

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Bot Wars

There has been a spurious increase in the number of worms circulating the Internet over the past one/two weeks. CERT has reported worms and their variants written by rival gangs that are targeting each other and trying to take control of computers. All of them exploit the recent Windows Plug n Play exploit. These worms not only take control of computers but also search and destroy other rival worms. The intention of these criminal cyber gangs is to take control of an army of computers much bigger than any other, to launch distributed and coordinated attacks on organizations for financial benefits. Thus have started the bot wars!

There are some interesting articles on this in BBCNews and Zdnet.

This is unbelievable. Gone were the days when the Internet was exclusive to the universities and the research community. And gone are the days when this lone creative introvert of a kid tried to showcase his exploits by breaking into systems. Now has arrived the day of the cyber gangs. Groups of organized and highly qualified individuals who have gone underground for the sole purpose of being nefarious mercenaries!

I wonder how the Internet and the world will look like 10 years from now. My two cents are on the coming of cyber police who are as prevalent as the modern day policeman. Only difference would be that the weaponry used will be totally out of the world!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Trip to Chennai Part 2

My Chennai vacation was real fun. I got to meet up with
my family and friends after a long time.

There was no other incident on my last leg journey on
train from Bangalore to Chennai. The ride was peaceful
and slept right through. Next thing I know, my brother was
at the station.

There were these ID day celebrations going on. Took part
in the marathon the morning I came and won second prize
just behind my brother. Bro has been very atheletic
since his school days. At some point of time it does dawn upon
all older bros that their kiddie sibling are not all that little

I met up my friends after some 4 long years! It was a wonderful
reunion. We caught up with some old times and had some
hearty laughs. Fruit shop used to be one of our favorite
hangouts and still is. We had our days of chaos and ruckus there.
Who ever said you could not get high with lime mint cooler!

We guys have planned another get together this diwali. Hope
to have another blast then!

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Trip to Chennai

The independence day vacation along with rakhi were just around the corner when I realized that I had to go home. It had been a while since my last visit to Chennai. I tried to wake early the day before my journey to get a Tatkal train reservation. Tatkal is a god given hope for last moment travellers like me. But the lazy me who worked late the previous night could not get up early and had to think of alternate plans. Thats when my roomate told me about this smooth Volvo bus that goes to Bangalore in 15 hours!! Once in Bangalore I could catch another bus to Chennai and travel for 6 hours before I am home sweet home. Little did I realize that there is more to it than meets the eye.

I reached Bangalore after a hair raising bus ride. I was seated right in the front row of the large spacious Volvo. The bus driver had the impression that he was playing 'Monster Truck Madness'. He had absolute disdain for all others on the road and drove himself to glory giving his passengers some 'living on the edge' moments! Once I Bangalore at around 4:00 PM, I got a rude shock that the next bus to Chennai was only at 10:00 PM. So, I decided to try my luck on train. Right now, I have a on waiting list 1 AC ticket to Chennai at 10:30 PM. Hope some buddy of mine cancells his/her ticket. I would be forever grateful. If not it would be another adventurous last leg ride home.

More when I reach Chennai. I am so bugged that I am blogging from this cybercafe near the Bangalore bus station paying a rip off amount of 28/Hour.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


[Aug 9 2005 6:09 PM IST]

Discovery has finally landed in Edwards Air Force Base in California!

News of the descent had gathered worldwide attention after the Columbia disaster almost two and a half years back. NASA had vowed to not have another incident similar to Columbia. But when Discovery was launched there was debris falling from the spacecraft, which was captured on some newly installed advanced cameras. There was speculation and worries that this was going to be a Columbia-II. Luckily, none of the debris hit the spacecraft this time round. NASA has cancelled all future lift-offs until it can address the 'debris falling' issue comprehensively.

The safe return of Discovery is good news to the world over. Man has been bold and intelligent enough to venture to space and send rovers to Mars. Exploration of the unknown expanse of the universe, just as man explored Earth some hundreds of years ago, will lead to progression of mankind and beyond!

Looking forward to the Galaxian empire and the Jedis, in some birth of mine.

May the force be with you!

Saturday, August 06, 2005


This is my first venture into the world of blogging. A number of my of friends are in the game and I do not want to miss the bandwagon. Here on, I will post articles on computer security. I am no big expert but as far as I can say nobody is one! We are all here in an eternal learning experience. I will not bore you guys anymore with my constant rant. Look out for my first article soon.

Take it easy fellas!