30 May, 2006


My daughter's favourite play is to hold a small box in her hand and start conversing, imagining the small box as a mobile phone. It is interesting to watch her laughing and talking, giving enough time to allow her imaginary friend to talk and scream. If a child could get fascinated so much at this small box(mobile phone), imagine the influence it is creating on the younger generations. I try to remember about my childhood days. Talking over telephone was very expensive affair. Only those who were very affluent had telephones in their house. But over years, technology has taken over.

Last couple of years, I have been watching the technology changes happening back home. Few years before, when I had been to India, I had to refurbish my house. The painter was getting a call from another friend of him, who was painting in a house few yards away from my house. His friend wanted him to join for a cup of tea, in the neighbouring Tea shop in the street corner. He was getting more than a dozen calls in few hours. I gave him a pep talk to know about the economics. His joy was that he does not need to wait for phone connection and this is instantaneous. It helps him in his business and he need not bother about moving home. His phone charges must be the major expense for his family. This is in a developing country. I remember a cartoon by Mathan in Ananda Vikatan many years before when Rajiv Gandhi the then Prime Minister announced that communication will become easy even in villages by 2000. The cartoon was a farmer during a break while ploughing, gets hold of a phone in a public booth near a big banyan tree and informs his wife that he will be at home for lunch. This was many years before.

Sometimes it is scary to travel in the late hours in London. The other night I was really scared when I saw someone gigantic and laughing and walking opposite to me in a subway. He asked how are you doing and I was about to answer that I am fine. I was bit scared whether he is going knive me. I had a sigh of relief, when I heard him saying "Darling, I miss you...". The little gadget is taking the world by storm. Some behave so awkwardly in public, by talking loudly. They need to understand that they spoil the privacy of others by talking loud. I have seen others raising their eyebrows on seeing such people. The most irritating of all, is when they laugh and discuss their personal stuff. Also, the ring tones are so irritating. Most of the desis have the latest hit Hindi songs as ring tones. Especially during work, some of them do not have the courtesy to put it on silent mode. The best part is when they leave the phone on desk while they are away from the desk. I hate to hear the ring tones.

Few years before people were crazy in having a music when they were reversing the cars in India. I used to get wild when they use music like baby crying, that too while reversing their car in Hospitals. On observing all these, I am afraid whether we are back to old civilisation. We may be advancing by technology, but going back by civilisation. Last but not the least, many times I forget to switch back from silent mode and some of my friends may mistake for not attending their phone calls. Please pardon me.... No... it is not sign of ageing...

The picture in this post is Loh Catherine in Scotland. Lake is called as Loh in Scotland. Close your eyes and imagine the silence that could be found in such places.... Wonderful!!!

06 May, 2006

The new life

Life always has its own twist and turn. Though I do not have time to sit before the computer, the city life is keeping me active by many thoughts. I am getting used to the life in London.

Travelling by tubes (underground trains) and looking around people is really exciting. Having been in a sleepy town so far and moving to a big city has its own life. I pick up the newspaper 'METRO' daily from station. I meet new faces daily. London is really a great cosmopolitan city. Great city of multi-culture, multi-language and multi-ethnic people. Before you finish your daily journey you can hear many languages. I enjoy, hearing people talk. Sometimes I wonder at their language it is. There are many Europeans. It is fun to watch people talk loudly in their mobiles. Ofcourse, the mobile does not work when you travel in tubes. I come across so many topics when I travel by train. Last week there was a Tamil Couple discussing about the life in London and at Chennai. Probably they thought I do not know Tamil and were discussing loudly about each one of their friend.

Every weekend I visit home which is more than 3 hours journey by train from London. Last weekend I had to catch only the last train. Having travelled by last trains in Madras suburbs, I felt funny when I travelled by the last train to my home town. I could reach only around 1.00 A.M on saturday. The kids had gone to sleep. The next day goes in setting right things back at home and spending time with kids. Again, Sunday I get ready for the big journey. I have come across many things when I travel in the train. I shall be exchanging them with you all shortly.

My house move is planned for the next week and I may be without computer connection for few days. Kindly bear with me and I shall get back to my routine shortly. My idea of bringing up a Tamil blog is very much there. I have articles ready for few posts. But still too many things are going around with me at the same time.

One of these days while going through the metro newspaper I came across few interesting stuff.

*** I saw a picture of Tony Blair in the parliament. The photo had specifically mentioned about a red thread on his hand. The part of the article goes like this...."Tony Blair has turned to a new ally- the Mother Goddess Shakti. The Prime Minister sported a red thread around his wrist at yesterday's rowdy question time session. The thread or nadachedi, is a Hindu symbol which signifies attachment to the Goddess - who brings strength, good luck or protection. It was a gift of friendship presented to Mr. Blair when he visited a Hindu temple last week." Whether he accepted it as a gesture or to respect other's feeling, it looks like he realises the benefit of it. Rest of it I leave it to you.

***The whole country is hoping for Wayne Rooney to be fit before the World cup.

***Chaos as Tube is crippled by heat. Thousands of commuters were delayed yesterday as the Tube network was crippled by the sweltering heat. Trains were forced to crawl at just 20mph rather than their usual speed of 45 mph to 50mph as tracks expanded in the 27 degrees Celsius heat. It makes me to laugh. We have a great network system back home. At times when we realise the volume of network our Indian railways handle, it is amazing. The major difference is here it is not easy to travel without ticket. There is no first class or Ladies compartment in the local trains.

***Seeing couples locking lips in parks and public places can be off-putting. But now they have got an excuse- it can cure the misery of hay fever. A 30-minute kissing session can reduce the body's allergic reaction to pollen, a study has found. Kissing relaxes the body and reduces the production of histamine- a chemical pumped out in response to an allergies. Britain has more than 13 million hay fever sufferers, whose symptoms range from a runny nose and itchy eyes to severe reactions such as asthma attacks. Nowadays I feel like I have hay fever. Anyhow should check with my Doctor.

Enjoy the pictures of Clouds over Thames river, and the great London Eye. Let me know how they are.