Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts

June 04, 2008

Defecation Diaries

After much thought and deliberation, James provides an alternate interpretation of the KYBO principle:

"I would make one adjustment to your definition of KYBO. KYBO is more of a general principal of not suffering the uncomfortable burden of holding it in. It's not necessarily someone who makes use of an outhouse.

KYBO Case Study: As a youth in Boy Scouts, Jeremiah had been indoctrinated with a belief in the KYBO principle. While walking down Granville Street one morning, he felt a powerful and immediate urge to expunge. Not being able to hold it in long enough to find a toilet, Jeremiah ducked behind an alley and released a fudge-monkey on the concrete."


An ARNABlog fanatic who is about to embark on his own Indian odyssey asks "Any tips on how to avoid the casual gifts from the sky? Even though they are supposed to bring good luck, I'd rather stay spared of that!". This is in reference to my numerous aerial encounters.

My advice was to consider wearing a hat and to avoid walking under trees or power lines. These locations provide birds with ideal locations for honing their KYBOing skills.

June 01, 2008

Commode Comments

After relieving the past, James provides a Vancouverites perspectives on the natural eruptive desires of man:

"In Canada, there's always been a fine balance between honoring the KYBO principle and suppressing an urge in order to find an appropriate locale to curl one's morning biscuit. Typically the balance is swayed one way or the other depending on several factors. Location: are you in the outback, or the city? Alcohol consumption: drunk-off-your face, or sober? Thus, if you're off-your-face in the woods, then it's entirely appropriate to release where the bears roam. However, being sober in the city requires considerably more self-control.

To complete the matrix... Being faced in the city often lowers inhibitions enough to make that alleyway entrance a great option. Vancouver's Granville St. or DTE will attest to the popularity of KYBO enthusiasts in this city. Sober in the woods? No problems there. We are well endowed with an abundance of wide open space.

In summary, we in Canada are only restricted when in the city and sober. Thus I think any office worker, or I.T. professional, who drops a morning dook in an alley on Georgia St. during coffee break is truly a vanguard in his/her time."

  • THe "Keep Your Bowels Open" principle refers to the usage of an outhouse or similar structure with a hole in it to deposit internally generated waste products.
  • The Downtown Eastside, one of the oldest and most interesting neighbourhoods in Vancouver, contains several alleyways that can provide a purveyor of plop with a steady dose of example excretions to mimic.

May 21, 2008

Relieving the Past

There are very few pleasures that match the joy of freeing oneself of a burden under the open sky; of pulling a vehicle over and emptying the tank; of creating intricate patterns against a wall and initialing them; and of creating a personal waterfall for a moment in time.

"Every sweet has its sour; every evil its good." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

The happiness that is derived from performing this liberating act must be tempered with a sense of social responsibility and profound shame. My friend James once described the horror he felt when he accidentally witnessed someone "pinching a loaf" for the first time on a Bangalore sidewalk. The trauma of being an unwitting spectator to the deed can sometimes leave a lifelong scar. On instances when the public good or personal modesty must be taken into account, privacy is desired. The noble origins of the water closet can be traced to this requirement.

If washroom facilities are within easy reach, there is no cause for concern. When there is nothing as far as the eye can see or the nose can smell, that is when the urge to purge rises to the top of to-do list. Agonizingly cruel "TO/LET" signs advertising empty flats available for rent fill the vision of an emergency bathroom seeker, as he frantically looks for a public restroom. In Europe, the "pay-to-pee" concept is quite popular and most people do not mind putting down a few euros for the privilege. But in India, an "anywhere, anytime" mentality exists, primarily among the male segment of the populace. Pay-per-use bathroom compounds do exist in larger cities or near tourist attractions. Usually, an attendant will charge an entrance fee and be responsible for its upkeep. Sometimes, imitation guards man free public bathrooms and collect a few rupees from unsuspecting bathroom goers, but that is the least of their worries.

April 01, 2008

New Discoveries

A study came out recently with findings that were good news for some and quite disconcerting for others. Researchers focused on a group of 82 married couples who were rated on their appearance and encouraged to talk about the health of their relationship. The primary finding was that "men's attractiveness appeared to be more detrimental than beneficial to marriage", or as media outlets around the world put it - "The secret to a successful marriage is an ugly husband". If the wife must be more attractive than the husband, then the ARNABride would have to be exceedingly beautiful to outshine my luminescent countenance. She would have to be an ARNABombshell. This is not only consistent with the ARNABabe framework but strengthens it with further scientific backing.

Another of the findings could explain why the search for potential ARNABride candidates has not made any meaningful progress as of this date.

"Attractive men have available to them more short-term mating opportunities (ie ARNABabes). This may make them less satisfied and less committed to the marital relationship (ie ARNABride)."


I came upon another article of interest in the media. India Infoline mentions "Arnab looked like a heartthrob with his new look and swept the audience off their feet", most likely alluding to the newest incarnation of the ARNABeard and my loyal readership.

March 23, 2008


ResponseTek is a leader in collecting real time feedback from customers of large scale firms. After a graphically gifted associate of mine created a composite image containing side by side before and after pictures of me, I posted it on a popular social networking site. Following in my company's footsteps, I was able to informally gauge popular opinion on the transformation of the ARNABody. The results were surprising. Although only two options were presented, to my astonishment a write-in option also gained considerable support from the masses.

On the ballot:
  • ARNABony - post India and pre-ResponseTek skinnier version
  • ARNABlimp - after 5 months at ResponseTek
Write in choices:
  • ARNABuff or ARNABuilt - a mythical muscular being
  • ARNABetween - the mean average of ARNABony and ARNABlimp
The voice of the people was captured and transformed into an ordered list which showed the public preference of the future direction of the ARNABody. After filtering out votes stating no preference as long as they got a taste of the ARNABody in any shape or form, the results were:
  1. ARNABuff
  2. ARNABlimp
  3. ARNABony
  4. ARNABetween

Pregnancy Scare

Trading in the physically exerting role of globetrotting adventurer for that of an office dwelling software engineer has taken a toll on the wondrous ARNABody. The attractive structure is increasing in mass at an alarming rate of 2-2.5 pounds a month. My Adam's apple has receded and my rugged jawline has become soft and rounded. To alleviate my concerns, a chubby coworker cheerfully declared that "You're only fat if you feel fat". He also mentioned he has not seen his Adam's apple in years.

Some of my colleagues attributed my rapid swelling to my "pregnancy". Just as female frogs change sexes and transform into male frogs when the female:male ratio is unfavourably tilted, they hypothesized that I am also mutating due to the extreme workplace ratio that is prevalent in the IT industry. My frequent cravings for poutine and other edible heavenlies was pointed out as further evidence in support of this gender jumping theory.

March 12, 2008

Redefining ARNABabe

The strength of the scientific community lies in its ability to constantly redefine thought processes and belief systems based on new discoveries or paradigm shifts. With the emergence of the ARNABeauty and ARNABombshell terminology in popular culture, the role of the ARNABabes in society must be redefined for proper distinction.

Let the universal set of available women in the age of youth, blessed by adequate mental faculties and endearing aesthetic features be known as ARNABabes. A subset of ARNABabes, the ARNABeauties, will possess unique internal qualities or traits that intrigue me enough to warrant further investigation. Another subset of the ARNABabes, the ARNABombshells, will be blessed with generous physical attributes, grace, and style that invigorate my very being. The set formed by the intersection of the ARNABeauties and ARNABombshells shall form the set of ARNABride candidates.

To summarize in formal mathematical notation:

ARNABabes are the universal set
ARNABombshells ARNABabes
ARNABeauties ARNABabes
ARNABride candidates ARNABombshells
ARNABride candidates ARNABeauties
ARNABride candidates = ARNABombshells ∩ ARNABeauties

Theoretically, ARNABride candidates Ø

A Venn diagram (created using the Google Charts API) provides a visual representation of this complex concept:

February 25, 2008

The Measure of a Man: Waist to Hip Ratio

The Waist to Hip ratio, or WHR for short, is a useful metric for quickly sizing up the overall health, fertility, and desirability of an individual. Calculated by taking the circumference of the waist and dividing it by the circumference of the hips, this heuristic cuts through boundaries of time and culture. Whether a society prefers a full figure or a waif-like one, the desired ratio still remains the same - 0.7 for women and 0.9 for men. Surveys in many different countries have trended towards this 0.7 value. Research has shown that there is a link between a mother's WHR and the cognitive abilities of her child, making it an useful metric for ARNABride candidates. The hourglass figure and the vital statistics of 36-24-36 all allude to this magic number that acts as a rule of thumb for calculating the fecundity of a female.

A gentlemen must also pay attention to his WHR. The WHR gives an idea about the distribution of fat around the abdominal area. Belly fat is a key indicator of chronic health problems such as heart disease and diabetes. While measuring myself for a custom tailored shirt, I had collected all the values required to calculate my WHR. A regular in annual IT industry publications lists of sexiest software engineers, when I first returned from India I had the ideal male proportions of 0.9. Since starting my new job, my metabolism has been unable to keep pace with my enviable work ethic and my WHR has slipped into the 98th percentile. In the past corsets were used to artificially alter a person's WHR, but I find this to be an unappealing remedy.

January 27, 2008

The Satyam Diet

I lost weight during the year I spent working in India. Most of it can be attributed to the Satyam Diet plan that I followed in Bangalore. My eating habits changed to accommodate my work schedule. My hours spent in the office were from around 10 in the morning to 7 at night. One hour on each side could be added as traveling time. Since my carefree existence allowed me to indulge in at least nine hours of sleep a night, by the time I woke up and got ready, there was no time for breakfast apart from some fruit or juice picked up on the way to work. The office gruel served at lunchtime was so consistent in its putridity that eating even a tiny portion of the fare tormented my taste buds and stripped me of my beloved appetite. Apart from the tasty morsels provided by office belles the amount of food I consumed during the midday meal was severely diminished. With two of the days three meals much smaller than I regularly had, dinner became a meal of meals. I would visit the finest establishments around the city, having food of singularly high quality but with a diversity of flavour, ingredients, and preparation.

No diet can be successful unless it combines both food intake and physical exertion. The exercise portion of the diet was provided by the 8 floors I had to climb every time I took a break (a surprisingly large number of times) with my colleagues or went to lunch. There was only one elevator for the many hundreds of employees, and with a significant proportion of these taking a break at any one moment in time, the elevator was always stuffed to overcapacity. The dozens of Satyamites left behind on each trip eagerly hoped that the next time the elevator opened its doors, they would find themselves within its friendly womb. Unable to bear the thought of lost productivity due to waiting for the lift, I resorted to using the stairwells to physically transport myself from the bottom of the building to the top and vice versa. During these breaks, often times I would partake in strenuous games of table tennis. My innate talent was not enough against my experienced opponents, so I had to work on my conditioning and reflexes. Other times I played carrom, a game similar to billiards or pool but played with bare hands.

Combined with the occasional escape from a wild mob or leap from a bus, the Satyam Diet worked wonders. Not only can a job provide opportunities for career development and financial stability, but it can also have a profound impact on other facets of life.

January 13, 2008

The Measure of A Man: Custom Tailored Shirts

In India due to the low cost of labour, it is usually more affordable to have custom tailored clothing made by the in house tailor at a brand name store as compared to buying the pre-made goods available there. I planned on revamping my wardrobe with only custom tailored clothing fitting my drool worthy physique, but time constrains allowed me to only commission two dress shirts. Having identified the most prominent tailoring franchises in the country, Raymonds and Reid & Taylor, I had ordered one shirt from each as a test of their capabilities. Based on the quality of the finished product, adherence to instructions, price, service, and variety of fabrics available, Reid & Taylor was declared my favourite.

Within days, a shirt designed to meet my individual needs was stitched together. If the material available at the store was not to my liking I could bring in my own fabric. Then the tailor would be summoned to take my measurements. It is wise to know the amount of material required and all the aspects of the body that need to be measured for a complete form fitting dress shirt to be made. Raymonds custom tailoring resulted in the delivery of a short sleeved shirt when I had assumed a long sleeved one would be created. The total cost of manufacturing the shirt would equal the sum of the fabric cost and the tailor's fee. A receipt would be issued along with a note stating the expected completion date of the shirt.

What to Measure:
  1. Neck - the circumference around the entire neck from the base where neck and shoulders meet and around the Adam's apple
  2. Shoulders - turn around and measure from one shoulder edge to the other shoulder edge tracing the slope of the shoulders
  3. Chest - the circumference around the largest part of the chest
  4. Waist - the circumference around the largest part of the waist
  5. Hip - the circumference around largest part of the hip including the bum at its peak
  6. Shirt - the top of the shirt at the collar seam to the desired level at the bottom, recommended: trouser crotch level
  7. Sleeve - from the shoulder edge to the hand at the desired level, recommended: where thumb and fourth finger join to make a 'V'
  8. Wrist - the circumference around largest part of the wrist around the bony bump
Recommended Tools:
  • Measuring tape
  • Assistant

January 01, 2008

A Year of Change

The year that was will be remembered as a seminal one in the Chronicles of Arnabia. As with any year it was a year of gain and a year of loss, but above all it was a year of change. The hero of our tale concluded his work term in his ancestral homeland of India, then circled the globe spreading goodwill among EU nations, before making a triumphant return to the place of his ARNABirth - Canada.

Not only did the physical location of my residency on Earth change, but also my career path and community involvement. I bade farewell to Satyam Computer Services, my faithful employer during my internship period, and engaged in a new working relationship with ResponseTek Networks where the prospects for developing my technological skill set seem encouraging. I took on greater responsibilities within the local Bengali community, infusing it with youth and receiving from it many learning opportunities about my cultural background. I redefined the ARNABody in a shape so formidable that the many women enrolled in the ARNABstinence program had second thoughts about whether to renew their membership for the new year.

With all these changes in 2007, the stage appears to be set for a more stable year of continued personal growth in 2008, with one significant storyline to look out for being the continued search for the ARNABride.


"It is said that the present is pregnant with the future." - Voltaire

November 20, 2007

A New Chapter

My career to date is composed of 8 months at of Canada Revenue Agency and one year at Satyam Computers Ltd. One is a Canadian government institution and the other an Indian software giant. One is answerable to the people of a great nation and the other to the hundreds of large companies across the globe that form its client base. One is a slow moving non-profit organization that handles the largest amount of money among any outfit in the country while the other is a fast growing publicly traded multinational firm that handles sensitive data belonging to others. The workplace culture of these two organizations is not as great as appearances might at first indicate. Both have an approximate employee strength of 40,000, multiple office locations spread out over vast distances, relaxed working environments for the legions of cubicle dwellers, and a need to manage large amounts of information securely and efficiently on behalf of third parties. As an employee, I was a small part of a much larger picture.

Just imagine that the picture was much smaller, with me comprising a greater portion of it. Would the picture then not be prettier? So my quest began for obtaining a job with a small company with big ambitions and a need for superior, albeit raw, talent. It also made sense for my third job to be something completely different, with a company that was focused on offering a particular service or on creating a product of their own, rather than according to the mandate of someone else. As I gave it a little more thought, a list of features that I was looking for in a prospective employer emerged.

Basic Requirements:

*Increased amount of responsibility
*Small company with an involved and capable leadership team
*Fast paced work environment with enhanced learning opportunities
*Reasonable working hours so that I can still have time to pursue my varied interests
*Sufficient salary and vacation time to allow me to maintain my princely lifestyle

Additional Features:

*Location with plenty of dining and entertainment options
*Amiable colleagues with distinct personalities
*Miscellaneous environmental stimuli

As I embark on my quest to find enriching employment upon my return to the golden shores of the Greater Vancouver Regional District, it will be interesting to note whether prospective employees will look upon my international experience with favour, indifference, or contempt. With the specifications formalized, a new chapter in the iconic tale that shaped a generation can begin.


“I know not what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”
-Isaac Newton

November 19, 2007

A Brief History of Arnab

In June 2006 I graduated from Simon Fraser University with a Bachelor of Science in Computing Science and Business Administration. The sizable female student population of School of Computing Science (12 at its peak) never recovered from the shock, but the SFU Business department embraced my departure by encouraging me to write an article in the student publication called “The Buzz”. The editor at the time was Peter, and a year after our paths diverged he has convinced me to become a contributor to the Work Blog.

The past year was spent in the land of India, where I devoted myself to my work as a software engineer for a large IT company - Satyam Computer Services. These adventures are chronicled in the much admired ARNABlog. After my one year contract had expired, several weeks of travel throughout North Indian and Western Europe followed before I returned to Canada armed with tangible work experience, an inquiring mind, and a sculpted body. Many tales are yet to be told, as old stories are recollected and new adventures unfold.

August 30, 2007

4 High Street

Now a popular tourist attraction, during my days in Bangalore I lived at 4 High Street in an area called Cooke Town. The maroon coloured apartment complex was protected by a pair of vigilant security guards who were capable of being present at any time of the day or night. For an additional fee they would also wash the vehicles of the other tenants of the complex. On the second floor on the third story (as ground floor is zero) of the building was my flat. There was a large lobby with sofa and TV, a balcony, a kitchen, and 3 bedrooms. Two of the bedrooms held 3 paying guests each, while the more expensive bedroom had two occupants. Each bedroom contained an attached bathroom, TV, beds, and cabinets. There was also a washing machine, ironing board, malfunctioning water filter, and maid for all of us to share. I was in one of the three person rooms. The rooms were sparsely decorated save for a sign taped to the wall warning us of all that we could not do.

Over the 8 months that I lived there I met an interesting cast of characters. At any one time the flat could accommodate 8 paying guests. The average period of stay per person was a couple of months, so a great many guests rotated through High Street during my stay. By the time I left I was third in seniority. Unsurprisingly, most of my flatmates were Indians, with 10-12 whom I spent time with and around 5-7 souls who did not interact with anyone not related to them or working with them. They came from many different states - Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, Delhi, West Bengal, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Punjab. The rest of my flatmates were either Dutch (4), Mexican (1), Brazilian (1), British (1), or French (1). There were dentists, lawyers, interns, and software engineers. There were Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Muslims, and some who did not believe in anything one way or another. Some were married, some had girlfriends, some were engaged, some were not interested, some were searching vigorously, and some were hoping for a miracle. Some were extras in Bollywood films or contestants on Indian Idol. Some were friends, some were acquaintances, some were strangers, but all were my flatmates.

August 20, 2007


Date: March 2007
Location: Outskirts of Bangalore
Event: Private Party

Due to my status as an international icon I generously made an appearance at a farmhouse party being thrown in Whitefield by a fellow intern, on the far eastern fringe of Bangalore city. After finding an auto, having it run out of fuel, going to the bathroom (indoors), finding another auto, arriving at what we thought were the premises only to have it be an intersection, and then sitting on a canister of gas in the rear storage compartment of a shared taxi, it was not too long before we reached the location.

Upon arrival, we followed a trail leading to a small treehouse-like complex where all the guests had congregated. With around a hundred people already in attendance, this area was quite crowded with lots of drinking and dancing going on all around me. As a devout non-dancer and frequent teetotaler, I was out of my element and frantically looked for a safe zone where I could place myself. I spotted some tables that had been left near the balcony. I gracefully glided in behind them, planning to relax and enjoy the rest of the night. I found quite a few bottles of rum and various soft drinks situated around me. By now darkness had fallen and the crowds were getting heavier. Soon people were accosting me and asking me to pour them drinks. It appeared I had taken the place of three no-show bartenders and had positioned myself as the preferred beverage provider for the party.

As I mention in my cover letters when I am applying for any jobs, I am a fast learner who can quickly pick up new skills. Soon I was simultaneously mixing drinks into many glasses at once, making small talk, and looking devastatingly gorgeous. The ARNABar was open for business. The ARNABeauties all complimented me on my newfound abilities and old world charm, while their male companions scowled at me and complained that the rum was no good. The rum in question was Super Jack Rum (from the makers of Super Jack Brandy and Super Jack Gin), and tasted better with each subsequent glass. At 6am the next morning I was finally able to go home and rest after a hard night's work.

June 03, 2007

Decision Time

With only a few weeks left on my current contract with Satyam, I now have to decide what to do next. Options include extending with Satyam, searching for a different job here in India, back in Canada, or somewhere else altogether, traveling, or pursuing further studies. No clear favourite has emerged as yet, although I am willing to continue my stay in India.

There is something special about this land and its people, that even with an exceptionally long list of interrelated problems and challenges to face, both man made (overpopulation, poverty, corruption, lack of infrastructure, communal violence, …) and otherwise (monsoon, heat waves, mosquitoes, …), I still have a desire to remain for some more time.


Some nice sayings I have stumbled upon while pondering my future:

“What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.”
- W.H. Davies, from "Leisure"

"The true tragedy of a routinely spent life is that its wastefulness does not become apparent till it is too late." - Amitav Ghosh

“The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as long as we live.” - Mortimer Adler

“In a time of drastic change, it is the learners who inherit the future. The learned find themselves equipped to live in a world that no longer exists.”- Eric Hoffer

“80 percent of the problems in your life come from wanting what you don’t have. The other 20 percent come from getting it.” - Unknown

“This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A child leaves the womb, his hometown, his country, each time gaining greater understanding, altering his actions to some degree based on these new experiences and insights, and perhaps becoming a transforming element of society around him.” - Dan Glass

A Tale of Two Cities

My yearlong odyssey has been split between Hyderabad (~5 months) and Bangalore (~7 months). Recently I returned to Hyderabad to sort out some paperwork issues, and this allowed me to reflect on the two cities that I have called home during the past year. Both cities have their pros and cons. If the best facets of each city were taken and combined to create a new fictional city, Hydralore, and the worst parts were used to create another, Bangabad, I wonder which real world cities they would most resemble.


· Lots of events such as concerts, plays, etc (Bangalore)
· Rich cultural heritage with a blend of ancient and the modern (Hyderabad)
· Scenic hangouts (Hyderabad)
· Multicultural atmosphere (Bangalore)
· Salubrious climate (Bangalore)
· Thriving IT industry (Bangalore/Hyderabad)
· Varied shopping options (Bangalore)
· Multiple modes of public transportation (Hyderabad)
· Mixed accommodation (Hyderabad)


· Pollution and traffic congestion (Bangalore)
· Unscheduled but predictable power outages (Bangalore)
· Relatively high cost of living (Bangalore)
· Early closing times for commercial establishments (Hyderabad/Bangalore)
· Wild dogs prowling the street (Bangalore)
· Extreme heat (Hyderabad)
· Lack of infrastructure and unplanned urban sprawl (Bangalore)
· Riots (Bangalore)
· Explosions (Hyderabad)
· Unscrupulous auto rickshaw drivers (Bangalore)

March 23, 2007

Satyam Crossover Party

Reeling from the phenomenal success of the Crossover internship program, Satyam decided to host a Christmas party for all its international trainees. The event was held in Hyderabad where Satyam is headquartered and the bulk of the trainees (around 60) are located. Those in Chennai (around 10) and in Bangalore (around 5) were offered train or bus fare to and from the party destination. I gallantly accepted the offer and attended the event.

As the national highway between Bangalore and Hyderabad was purported to be a smooth ride, I chose to take a sleeper bus. The interior of the bus was a direct replica of a second class air conditioned (2AC) compartment of a regular train, with one notable exception – the lack of a toilet. An overnight journey on well paved roads and the lack of urine aroma allowed me to sleep in peace. Half an hour before my arrival in Hyderabad, I was awoken by my bowels. In urgent need to empty my digestive tracts, I elegantly slid of my bunk, loosened my belt buckles, looked uncomfortable, unsuccessfully searched for the aforementioned onboard facilities, and then approached the bus driver. A follower of the Vulcan maxim “"the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one", the bus driver rejected my appeal for a bathroom break as we had almost arrived at our destination. The first stop could not come soon enough. As I leaped out of the bus a horde of awaiting rickshaw drivers curiously inquired as to where I wanted to go. “Public toilet!”, I said. Soon I felt relief, regained my stoic composure, and headed to my old flat in Banjara Hills.

Sporting the newest incarnation of the ARNABeard – a French cut with the sideburns smoothly connecting with the main facial hair segment (also known as a short box beard) – and a stylish velvet jacket borrowed from a Belgian friend, the city was abuzz with the return of the Hyderabadi Heartthrob. Having wined, dined, and reclined with a bevy of international beauties over the weekend, it was soon time for me to return to Bangalore. The journey in this direction was not as tumultuous.

January 01, 2007

From One Year to the Next

For the hero of our story, the year 2006 was a momentous one. In 2007, the legend will continue to grow. As one year comes to a close and another begins, it is time for some "to do" and "have done" lists taking a look back at the year that was and offering a sneak preview into the year that will be.



Top 3 Achievements of 2006 (in no particular order):

Graduated from Simon Fraser University with a BSc in Computing Science and Business Administration after four years of continuous effort and dedication to my studies

Cemented my status as a bonafide heartthrob with mass global appeal and a diversified fan base

Obtained an internship with Satyam, allowing me to gain international work experience in my chosen field and at the same time explore my heritage, travel India, and visit my relatives



Places Visited So Far (Days Spent):

Mumbai (5)
Hampi (2)
Delhi/Lucknow/Neemrana (10)
Chennai/Kanchipuram/Mahabalipuram (4)
Aurangabad/Ajanta/Ellora/Pune (3)
Kolkata (12)
Cochin/Alleypey/Varkala/Trivandrum/Kanyakumari/Kovalam (6)
Nandi Hills (1)
Coorg (2)

Total Places: 27

Places on the World Heritage List (Visited):

Agra Fort
Ajanta Caves

Ellora Caves
Taj Mahal
Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram

Sun Temple, Konârak
Kaziranga National Park
Keoladeo National Park
Manas Wildlife Sanctuary
Churches and Convents of Goa
Fatehpur Sikri
Group of Monuments at Hampi

Khajuraho Group of Monuments
Elephanta Caves
Great Living Chola Temples
Group of Monuments at Pattadakal
Sundarbans National Park
Nanda Devi and Valley of Flowers National Parks
Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi
Humayun's Tomb, Delhi
Qutb Minar and its Monuments, Delhi
Mountain Railways of India

Mahabodhi Temple Complex at Bodh Gaya
Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka
Champaner-Pavagadh Archaeological Park
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (formerly Victoria Terminus)

So far I have visited 11 of the 26 sites. The complete list can be found on the UNESCO World Heritage Center website.



Bangalore restaurants I have been to or plan to go to
Hyderabad restaurants I have been to or plan to go to

September 01, 2006

Rd No 3

My flat consists of two levels. The lower level consists of a spacious courtyard with adjacent rooms on two sides in an L shape. The I part of the L contains the kitchen, large bathroom, and the living room. The _ part of the L contains two bedrooms and a smaller bathroom. 2 guys live in each of these rooms. Until a fortnight ago, there were 5 men in the flat so I stayed in the living room. Now I have moved in to an actual bedroom. All ceilings on this level are covered in cobwebs, including the kitchen. The bathrooms are filthy and contain many indescribable wonders. The large bathroom contains an Indian style (crouch and relax) toilet. The smaller one has a Western style (sit and concentrate) toilet that was recently outfitted with a seat due to the generosity of the landlord. The flushing mechanism is not fully operational so buckets of water in conjunction with a bum shower (a gun shaped mini shower used to clean the rear) are utilised as an alternative method of waste disposal. The upper level consists of only one room, where two girls reside. It has no cobwebs. The bathroom within it is relatively sanitary, but I am forbidden from using it.