Archive for April, 2008

Water, Elixir of Life?

Posted on April 26, 2008. Filed under: chennai, water |

After reading this bit of news, I was reminded of a poll that Ajay created long ago. Here is the poll question – “How safe is your drinking water? How much importance do you give to find out purity of water that you consume daily?

Here are the poll results:

Among the 175 netizens who voted,
39.43 % believe that any packed water is mineral water and safe to drink
21.14 % prefer water from purifiers or boiled water.
17.14
% seem to suspect duplicacy though they trust brand names
11.42 % have other work to do 🙂

This poll was by no means a perfect attempt to guage public opinion on this issue. 175 is too small a number to reflect the whole of Chennai. But even then, this statistic does have some meaning. It reflects the importance level that we attach to quality of water. As the news article suggests, number of people affected by water borne diseases in the city is high and increasing. Avoid drinking water from roadside hotels and shops. Even from the vendors on the beach. Do not assume that the water is clean. Watch out for fake brands. Dont forget that the unknown ‘XYZ’ water bottle that you buy in a hurry at a railway station / bus stand might well take you to the hospital. I would suggest to use boiled water always.

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Friend in the Mangalore Express

Posted on April 19, 2008. Filed under: friends, train | Tags: , , |

Apr 10, Kuttipuram, Kerala. I entered the railway station at 6 in the evening. I was returning back to Chennai after attending my cousin’s marriage. Thanks to Sarath – a cousin of mine, I got a sleeper class ticket in the Mangalore Express. My backup plan was to take a bus to Coimbatore & board the Nilgiri Express. Luckily I didnt have to do that. My train which was scheduled to depart at 6:48 was running late by 20 minutes. It was a lazy, almost empty station. The train chugged in at 7:15 PM. I waved my cousin and uncle goodbye and got in.

My Seat No was 71. I found it already occupied by a elderly lady. She was dressed in a simple, neatly pressed saree, had silvery white hair and strikingly clear eyes. It turned out that her Seat Number was 72 which was the upper berth. I readily agreed to switch seats.

I tucked the luggage in the berth and settled down near the window beside her. We got introduced to each other. I told her about where I work & live in Chennai, why I was here etc.. She also told about herself. She was a retired teacher from a school in Tirur. She was travelling to Chennai to meet her brother. Her trip too was unplanned and felt lucky to get tickets on the day of travel.

We talked on a lot of things. She taught English and Social Science in school. She talked with pride about her students who’re now working in top companies throughout the world. She told me about her students who have been to the IITS, IIMS and other top universities. Her eyes were gleaming when she recalled instances when students called her up and shared moments of their successes. We even talked about the current education system, how the teacher-student relationship has changed, school drop-outs which she had witnessed in her career. We talked about our families. We talked about the books we read. She is a regular reader of Reader’s Digest for the last 26 years which is a year and a half more than my age :D.

Over the conversation, we discovered that our homes were very near. Only about a kilometre apart. She was able to name even our neighbour’s house name. The train crossed the Palakkad Station. We wished each other good night and went to sleep. She woke me up when the train reach the Central Station in Chennai. I helped her out of the station with her luggage. She thanked me all the way. So humble, I thought. I then wished her bye and left. It felt good to have made a friend. Hope our lives cross again.

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Am I alive?

Posted on April 14, 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Very much !! It has been over a month now since I blogged last. Here are a few things that I did in the last 30 days:

  • Created a website for my college alumni. It’ll be up soon.
  • Attended the RIA Architect Summit in Bangalore. Met up with a couple of friends. Got a small treat from Priyanka for the new car she has bought.
  • Went to my home place in Kerala and attended a cousin’s wedding. Met my grandma, cousins & relatives. While returning back, I got a new friend in the Mangalore Mail Express. More about it in the next post. It deserves one ;).
  • Broke fast, lunched, dined & slept every single day. Not once did I skip 🙂

Mom called me in the morning and reminded that today is Vishu. Being away from home today means missing VishuKani, good food & some investment. Sigh!!

Update: One more thing that I did was missing my mobile.  My Sony Ericsson k700i slipped off my pocket while alighting from an auto.  I noted it only after a couple of minutes and returned to the place where I got down.  A search for nearly half an hour didnt result in anything useful.  It served me for more than two years.  To make things clear and leave no space for rumour, let me say again that I lost nothing else except my mobile :).

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