Saturday 31 July 2010

The Financial Side

Under the aegis of our Alumni association, great works are possible. We shall delve into the potential that we could wield, in the succeeding paragraphs.

Having a Re-union is all nice and fine. But for that special feeling of satisfaction, something more needs to be done. That "something more" could be Charity. Charity is often associated with mostly super rich people. This need not be the case always. One can easily and meaningfully do charity with even 100 rupees to spare.

We are not a single person anymore. Under the umbrella of an organisation, every penny has its contributory value. Some corporates are already supporting the economically backward students of our school. We can easily step in to mitigate the hardships of the poor students presently studying in KNHS. A few thousand rupees to each poor student will help them a great deal.

In the present times, charity has become a tool to increase one's social status. The genuine concerns are addressed for the affected lot, while at the same time increasing the popularity of the philanthropists. Charity can also be done discreetly.

Very few people in this world do charity, if its not visible to others. Our association should support Charity with discreetness and no fanfare. The discreetness may only be limited to the names of the persons donating for charity. But the donor's name will enter the account books through the cash receipts. A full and complete accounting system will be in place for every single penny received as donation, registration fees, or under any other head.

Socially responsible behaviour should be displayed by our association. And whatever charity we do, it should be primarily focussed at the students studying in KNHS. Whatever appreciation or credit comes for it should accrue to our association as a whole. This will serve two purposes. Firstly, every person will feel like contributing as per his/her individual strength because there is no notice put up whether anybody's egos get boosted or hurt depending on the amount of donation. Secondly, only genuine among us will contribute as no matter how big the amount one spares, there is no advertisement or special treatment among the public.

A downside to the aforesaid way of charity could be that some of us may not like to lighten our purse, when our names are not going to be flashed in public.

Kindly email us your views at knhs.alumni@gmail.com

Until we meet on 29th August 2010 for the re-union, do take care.

Tuesday 8 June 2010

Missing From Action

Sorry for keeping away from blogosphere. For the past many weeks, my free times are entirely eaten up for various activities for my school' alumni association. This is effectively keeping me away from my own blog. Its a painful reality, but the my commitment towards my alumni association is also quite big.

Until things take a concrete shape in the activities that i am involved in, devoting time for this blog would be limited. Moreover, these days lot of comments i am getting from unknown people. I am just wondering if i need to put a plug on this kind of liberty. Some non-sensical and foreign language comments are coming in. Just perplexed, for now. Let me see what i would do in future. For now, status quo is good.

Wednesday 28 April 2010

Embroiled In One's Own Net

Oh god, i dont know how i would manage if there wasn't any internet. Its a far-fetched statement, but yes, after getting used to the wonderful thing that can happen to this world, its difficult to think of a situation where there is no internet anymore.

The amount of money i am spending for the internet at the internet cafe will suffice to subscribe for atleast 4 months unlimited connection. Around 4 years back i had a broadband connection with a laptop. But for my nature of being hooked to the net, i hardly slept in the night. Over a period of time, i realised that if i dont get rid of the laptop and internet connection, my health would be in bad shape. Thats when i disposed it off.

After that, i havent had the courage to buy another computer for myself. Though i end up spending more, atleast i return back to normal life after the internet cafe closes. These days i am caught with my school's alumni association. So many mail ids to check, one orkut account, two blogs, two facebook accounts, one alumni group in facebook, one another group which iam managing in orkut. Ohh...my hands are full, but there is no lack of energy.

Hope i can do justice to all the spheres of my activity. And in august this year, a grand re-union of my schoolmates would happen. Greatly looking forward to that.

Thursday 15 April 2010

Busy with Networking

I didnt mean any new MLM kind of networking. The past week saw me always stuck in front of the monitor, in pursuit of an Old students association for my school (KNHS, Bangalore). Since i am away from Bangalore, the only way i could give my best was by finding the alumni of my school through the net.

Some days i hardly had enough rest. One day i even spent 8 hours on the net, but it was satisfying. These days, my hours logged on the internet have gone quite high. But somewhere there is lot of satisfaction. The real satisfaction will come when the re-union planned in august 2010 becomes a success.

Fourteen years back, i did a re-union for only my class along with 2 other friends who took active part in finding the old buddies. We were much exhausted by the end of it, but still excited enough to have all old friends at one place.

My own blog has been suffering of late. I am not updating with new blogs these days, as often as i would like it. May be its also because these days the comments have gone down for whatever reasons. And know what, i am getting comments in chinese language....from unknown people. he.hehheheh.ehhehe...

Well guys, will say bye now, but shall try to keep this blog alive and kicking. See ya...

Friday 9 April 2010

My unforgettable Ganesh Chaturthi

I was all of 15 years, and a few months past my high school life. There was a dramatic change that took place in the few months of exposure i got after schooling. I had become little courageous vis-a-vis interacting with people.

Community celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi festival was a trend that had caught the imagination of Bangaloreans, those days. Youth associations generally took initiative in pitching up big shamiyana and placing Idol of the elephant god inside it. Poojas were regularly conducted along with variety programmes in the evenings to entertain the crowds.

I was quite fascinated by the great appeal of these festivities. Nothing much for the worship part, but for the getting together of so many people at one place. I badly wanted to replicate such successful celebration of the festival in our own colony. But there was no mentor to look up to for support.

Somehow i succeeded in getting another guy excited with my plan of celebrating the festival. We managed just enough money to print a receipt book for collecting donation. Another couple of younger friends joined in for collecting donations from all and sundry. Just in time, we managed a decent enough amount to pitch a tent in our colony and also place a large enough Ganesh idol. The moment the women in the colony saw this development, they were all praises for us. They took part with whole hearted interest on a daily basis in conducting poojas, distribution of prasad, etc.

The grand finale of dipping the idol in water (we chose a well) was attended by all youngsters in our colony. The boisterous kids sang paeans to lord Ganesh and it reached a crescendo while dipping the idol. Till date, that festival of Ganesh Chaturthi has been very special to me.

Wednesday 31 March 2010

Aarattu: Padmanabha Temple

Today i had the opportunity to witness the aarattu (Holy bath) of the idols of Sree Padmanabha Temple. Due to heavy crowds, a close view was impossible without risking a stampede. But all in all it went off smoothly and without any incidents. There was a cavalcade which consisted of 5 to 6 elephants, horse mounted police, traditional percussion musicians, a handful of policement with arms in shoulder-arm position, and other colourful paraphernalia.

The procession started from Sree Padmanabha Temple, East Fort, Trivandrum and ended at Shanghumugham beach, where the idols were given the holy bath in the arabian sea. Traditional oil torches attached to the end of a stick held by volunteers lit up the evening, as it was already dusk. I took few picture of the elephants which were taking rest on the beach with their mahouts sitting besides them. One elephant was made to stick to rules (i.e. not to make unnecessary movements) by slanting a stick to one of its legs. The elephant is expected to see that the stick doesnt fall. If the stick falls the elephant would be calling for trouble. But this particular elephant didnt care for the stick as i could see that the stick fell atleast 2 times and then the mahout never cared to repeat the stick trick again.

A colourful evening it was for me today. Many foreigners too had gathered with cameras which caught every action happening around them. Before it was late, i called it a day and came here to update about the experience of this nice evening.

Monday 22 March 2010

Anger: The spoil sport

Time is a bitter thing sometimes. It doesnt have a rewind button, which would allow us to undo wrongs that we did in the past. A word uttered cant be caught back. We all know these universal truths, but still, sometimes things dont happen as per our wish.

I usually dont regret for the mistakes that i did knowingly. For example, like splurging unnecessarily while in my youth. I knew it was irresponsible, but none that would affect others. And hence i usually never regretted it, because i knew i have enjoyed that time when i did it. But thats not the case with words that are exchanged between friends or family. A wrong word uttered and the other person has difficulty forgetting it. This happened to me just this past week.

My patience levels are generally quite high, unless someone is hell-bent on stepping on my last nerve. Another factor for disappointment is expectation. We expect others to behave in a certain fashion, and when that doesn't happen, we are in for disappointment which also brings other unpleasant emotions with it.

This past week i was little disappointed about some aspect, and hence i shared it with my better half. I was expecting some kind of solace and wanted to hear some kind words from her. But she started advising me. I didn't expect advise at that hour. Without my knowledge I had started arguing with her and also i started shouting without my knowledge. Though i never use any inappropriate language, my volume had gone high. She was quite hurt, and when i realised my folly, i cooled down very soon. But the damage was already done. When loved ones hurt, the pain is all the more difficult to die down.

She expressed her unhappiness with my behaviour. Apart from tendering an apology i didn't want to say anything more. Time will heal the hurt, but its better to hold one's tongue and temper than to rue later. Every failure has a lesson. I better learn from my own mistake. Smart people learn from other's mistakes, rather than committing their own. I hope readers of my blog will be smarter than me in this aspect.

God bless.

Tuesday 2 March 2010

A plot which disappeared

Owning a piece of land in Bangalore in itself is a big achievement for the salaried class. Many years back a government employee sold his only piece of land in his village and bought a small plot in Bangalore. It was the culmination of years of his yearning. Since he didnt have the money to build a house right away, he just waited for better days to arrive.

Once in every few months he would go and visit his plot, to see that it is safe. This went on without any hiccups for around 3 years. And on one such routine visits to his plot, he was aghast to see that a house was already standing on his plot, with a family living in it. His heart rate shooted quite high. He mustered enough courage to knock on that house's door. Some one appeared at the door and asked what it was. With a heavy heart and lot of perspiration on his face, he said this plot belonged to him.

The person who stayed in the house said that they had bought the plot few months back from the local landlord and he had built the house. This landlord incidentally was the same person from whom the first person had purchased the plot. Heart broken, the poor government employee went to the person who sold his property to another person without his knowledge. The landlord said he didnt know what he was blabbering and claimed not to have seen him earlier in his life.

The poor man returned home and narrated the incident to his family members. All were dumbstruck and shocked. There was no way he could fight the rich landlord. He shared this story with one of his colleague. Luckily his colleague said he could be of some help since he knew a notorious goon named "Seemenne Nagaraj". He and his colleague went and met this goon. Seemenne Nagaraj sent two of his lieutenants to clean up the act.

The two lieutenants of the goon knocked the door of the landlord who had cheated. The moment he got to know that these men were working for the notorious goon, he surrendered immediately and said he would give the plot adjacent to the original plot, without any charges and that too within a week. Within a week, the new plot got registered in the name of the cheated government servant.

The poor guy went on to built a house on that plot, before he retired from service. Incidentally i happen to be his son and thought i should share this story in my blog.

Saturday 27 February 2010

Looking back, Marching Forward

Around 14 years back, we had a re-union meeting of our high school classmates. Though in our 10th batch there were 90 students, not all could be traced. Even among the traced classmates, not everyone turned up. When we finally had the re-union meeting on 07 January 1996, only around 25 turned up. Still it was such a big emotional event that i am unable to forget that date easily enough.

We had the get together done in our class that we all studied in. Some had got married by then. Many girls had lost their old time charm, but their affection increased manifold. Most of us danced that evening to the song Ek, Do, Teen..... from the film Tezaab. That song was such craze during our final days in school and even we all had danced to it in 1989. Enough fun, frolic and catching up happened. But then, it was the first and last re-union that happened till date.

While arranging that re-union meeting, our school administration had asked us to form an old student's association. Since i was posted in another city, i didnt volunteer, likewise others had their own reservations and reasons. Now one of our old classmate has come up showing interest. I too am trying to pool in all my resources to begin an Alumni association for our school. My visit to Bangalore next week should keep me busy with this for few days atleast. Its a way of thanks giving to our beloved Ramani Madam, who wants this old student's association to be up and running before she retires next year.

I feel i have some moral responsility to fulfil my old teacher's wishes. Lets see what happens.

Monday 18 January 2010

Nostalgia Welcomed

Away from the rigmarole of office work, the last 2 weeks have opened windows to the past that i had missed. Presently i am undergoing a training programme in Tambaram, Chennai. On an average day, our day starts with Parade followed by Classes, and again Classes followed by Lunch break and Physical training. The schedule is the same now as during my initial training days, except for the venue.

When i had undergone training in airforce as an ab-initio, it was in the pristine campus of Air Force in Jalahalli East, Bangalore. An year back i had the opportunity to visit the same campus after a gap of 15 years. The world outside the campus had changed beyond recognition, while inside the wall not a single thing had changed. The buildings marked for demotion 15 years back, were still waiting for their end. Our barracks, the trees around, the parade ground, everything was the same. When we went to have a cup of tea at the cafeteria, the guy manning it hadnt changed either, nor the taste of tea.

During that visit to Bangalore, we were a batch of Air Warriors who had all undergone training during more or less the same period. To take in the things around, through our senses, we went for a walk into the past around the area. All of us were excitedly talking, pointing fingers at things that we could associate with, without any blur in memory. Those days, getting up in the early morning and having our health run was not what we wanted; but now we are ready to do it, if only, life could be as simple as then.

My course mates who share my class presently in Tambaram, are all enjoying the semblance of schedule to our training days. No office tension, except for may be a little studying that is to be done to clear the course successfully. I have been noticing elderly soldiers in my class becoming children again, without a trace of blush on their faces. They ask the silliest of questions, pressing the whole class into giggles which ultimately turns to laughter. The instructors do not take umbrage to the little fun that we elderly students have. In fact they too join in, and the lesson is put on hold so that the joke can be carried to its logical end. And then, we all join in and laugh our hearts out.

At the PT ground, though none of us is comfortable with running 2 big rounds of a football ground, the final stage of the PT is enjoyed. After the running and exercising, our PT instructor initiates us into bouts of laughter, like we see in laughter clubs. All the pain of running and exercising is forgotten and we all laugh our hearts out loud, without any inhibitions. Wish life turns as simple for ever, as i am having it now.

Saturday 16 January 2010

No celebrations

On the 19th of January, i will be 36 years old. For the past 7 years, exactly at midnight between 18th and 19th of january, one girl would call and wish me happy birthday. This time around i doubt if she will call me to wish on my birthday. The reason being she would be undergoing a knee operation on the 19th of January 2010. Though we have never met, both of of us know each other inside out.

Last week she sent me an SMS enquiring about my present address. I gave her the adress. And today as i was writing the first sentence of this blog, a mail came. It was from her, and i knew what it was. It was a greeting card from her. I opened it quickly and started reading it. The opening was touching, and as always it was "Dearest Joshi" and then few more touching words straight from her heart. She wished me all good things through her sweet and sincere words, and asked me to have a blast of a celebration on this birthday.

How could i celebrate when my best friend is scheduled to have an operation on my birthday. Last week i told my better half that though i will be with her during this birthday of mine, i cant celebrate and also told her the reason. She understood the special bond i shared with my friend and hence respected my decision. So, this time around no partying or any pomp on my birthday.

The friend i talked about here is Puvaneswari, an old chatmate of mine. A gem of a person, a tamilian born and brought up in Malaysia, but studying in London. She completed her ACCA and is presently pursuing her MBA. I wish her a fast recovery and pray whole heartedly for her good health. For my family and friends, the celebrations and partying can wait until next year.

Saturday 9 January 2010

When Eating became a Pain

In Air Force, there is a tradition whereby the married guys invite the bachelors to home and treat them with tasty home cooked food. Weekends are generally earmarked for this purpose when everyone is free from work. Usually 2 to 3 young guys are invited at once and treated to a sumptous fare, whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner. This is done turnwise by most of the senior colleagues who are already married.

For my shy nature i avoided most of the invitations with some or the other excuse. One person kept inviting me week after week, because he liked me much. I was never comfortable with the idea of visiting someone's place just for the purpose of eating. Though the visit helped in socially being connected, filling one's stomach was the crux of the whole exercise. I tried many excuses to avoid this eating-visit, but this particular person kept inviting me the next week and so on. Atlast i had to agree to visit his home for a breakfast session.

My host was a tamilian named "Satta Nathan" which roughly translated to "King of Rules", and that could be the reason he wanted to do complete justice to his role as a Host. I used to eat 3 to 4 Idlis for breakfast. When i finished eating 4 idlis, i said "Iam done Sir". He was not the one to listen. His wife caught his gesture quite ably and dropped 2 more idlis into my plate. I gobbled up this extra seving with slight difficulty, so that my host doesnt feel unhappy. No sooner i finished the extra serving, another 2 were served. I was looking pathetic when i saw it, but my host was smiling and pleading me to finish those 2 idlis too. With great difficulty i finished those two.

By now i had gobbled up a total of 8 idlis. Mr. Satta Nathan was not a host who could be easily satisfied, though my stomach had started crying and pleading to me to put an end to this episode. With all the efforts that i took to convince him that day, he was not one to allow me to end my breakfast. He kept asking me if i didnt like his idlis. I answered they were good, and right away he would say me to eat another couple of them. I kept smiling to him and his wife, while quitely swallowing all the pain i was experienced, along with the idlis. That day he allowed me to get up only after i finished eating 13 idlis.

After that day, i kept turning down politely all the invitations for many years from all my colleagues. These days i do visit people's house but i make a request that i shall serve myself. This technique has worked well for me. I never thought Hosts could be so cruel to a guest. Till this day Mr. Satta Nathan has not realised the agony i went through, while at his home.