Sunday, November 25, 2012

4 years in one picture

No, my name is not Pranav! No, it wasn't my birthday. And I'm far from 3 years old. Yet the cake was for me. You can imagine it was a big surprise!

My birthday fell in the summer hols during my IIT life. More like the monsoon but nevertheless, holidays. So I never celebrated it with my little gang of girls. Actually we didn't have many campus birthdays. Only one of us has a birthday during semester and we celebrated hers. For the rest it off the sem yet somehow it happened that over the four years we celebrated everyone else's once. Except mine!

On my very last day on campus, and I have never gone back to campus since so truly my last, my friends came into my room with this cake, apologised for the spelling mistake in my name and celebrated my non-birthday to make up for four birthday's I never had with them making it the most memorable day ever. And most importantly the most surprising.
Actually I had to act surprised. They couldn't really keep it a secret from me. One of them was so excited, she told me the previous night and asked me to act surprised. It only made it sweeter.
So there it is. Fours years of togetherness and all my insti life transformed into one cake, on one unexpected day, captured in one picture.
True, pictures do speak more than a thousand words!

I have been following WOW for a while but this idea caught my attention and I started browsing old pics.

God only knows how difficult it was to just pick one. And god only knows that a trip I took into the depths of beautiful memories. Thanks to Blogadda.
I had written about this incident earlier, when it actually took place. But to remember it, is far more beautiful.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Friday, November 02, 2012

Milano. European. City.

My visa would soon expire and I wanted to take another trip to Europe before it runs out. I planned with a friend to go to Greece but the vacation got longer and the people lesser. I planned to go to Budapest with another friend but the plans were never finalised and finally ditched. And then I came to know both of them are meeting up in Milan. On a whim and a fancy, I decided to go to Milan. It doesn't beat the whim of going to Prague. But the purpose beats it. I went to Milan simply to go because I have been planning for a while and not going anywhere and to catch up with friends I haven't met in a while. Prague is a beautiful touristy place. Milan is not supposed to be. I come back to work on Wednesday and everyone at office thinks I went to Milan on work. Really!

So I went to Milan to catch up with friends and see how Italy looks like in general when it's not decked up for the tourist or the pilgrim or the lovers. Simply the way people live. That's what you get in Milan.

A little of what you expect in London.
You see tourists and scammers alike at the Duomo (and I guess even at Last Supper but we never went there). You see gardens that have and have not people and victory arcs everywhere you can walk to.
You see the office crowd in the metro busy with their lives, reading newspapers, etc. You see the rich fashion on the beautiful windows of high end stores. You see the occasional awe of it's fans at San Siro stadium.

You see the discomfort of a new big city at the station and the daily ritualistic traffic of people as well. You see the traffic rules are not as crazy as people tell you but you are likely to get killed if you don't care. You see that the beautiful canal area of Navigli neither has a canal nor is it beautiful. You see the language enchant you into just wanting to hear the sound of it whether you understand it or not. You see a big European city mingled with history, riches and the urban mechanical days.
A little of what you expect in London.

So that's for the last of my European travel this year. I haven't really used my Schengen much, have  I?
But may be the travel bug is actually wearing off. Though I am happy I went to Milan. I woke up on the day of my flight to Milan and I was not really excited about. I was more annoyed that I needed get out of home. The lack of enthu could be because of the cold too! And of course when I woke up the day I needed to catch my flight back to London, I just did not want to leave!
[The airlines granted me the wish of hanging around more. I was stuck in the airport for 2.5 hours. I roamed around the airport and found one of my friends and spent sometime.]

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Hunger Games

The games | The books | The movies | What's with Archery ?

It's hard to find a film as good as the book it's based on. It's harder to find one that beats it! I know most people would disagree with me, but Hunger Games, the movie was far far better than Hunger Games, the book.

I'm not saying the book was not good. It had a plot. A plot that can gather momentum and put together a running story that runs all the way to the end. "Easy to read and full of masala". That's how a friend described it to me when I asked if I should read it. What I felt the book lacked for was description, imagination in words and the punch. It left a lot for the reader to imagine, not because it wants the reader to think but because it forgot to put it in words.
How the hell did they even give a girl 11 points when she shot at the judges ?
I almost missed the importance of not having a victor. Really? What's the big deal for the games if one year they did not have a victor. They had games in barren lands where once a lot of players died out of cold or lack of water. So now they have a year without a victor. At least the girl who challenges them dies. The next year they would not have District 11 or 12 victors and have only District 1 or 2 surviving till the end. Worse still, they can take their revenge on Katniss and get Prim the next year into the games and kill her. Really! If they didn't have a victor one games it would not have been much.
And why would you think Katniss the surviver take the berries? She might as well pretend to and not take them while she waits for the chubby boy to die and emerge a victor!
And so much more. The author could not explain clearer.

The movie took advantage of these gaps and filled them in with their ideas. The characters from Capitol were so well created. All those that lacked any character in the book were beautifully done up in the movie. There were some occasions where you would feel the movie changes the plot and does not do justice to the book but that's only because the book was written from the girl's perspective and if the movie was the same it would have lacked in telling the story so well told by the movie. In the ending where the Gamemaker is made to eat the berries that Katniss was about eat, that was a classic. Lots more masala and filminess but classic. The woman who acted as Katniss, Jennifer Lawrence was absolutely fabulous. The revolt in District 11 instead of the gift of bread was clarifying a story!
The movie surely outlives the book!

However, neither has anything to do with a bow and an arrow. And I have no idea why anyone would be inspired to take up archery as a hobby based on this plot! So yeah, that was the reason I read and watched. To get more inspired and continue with archery.
Doesn't matter. Self motivation is the strongest kind!