Tag Archives: friends

Jack Johnson – Go on

Came across this beautiful song on SWB‘s latest blog post. Loved the post and loved the song even more, for a lot of reasons.

In my rear view
I watch you watching the twilight
Behind the telephone lines
Nothing to prove, or to assume
Just thinking if your thoughts are different than mine
In my rear view
I watch you
I gave you your life, would you give me mine?

I see you slowly swim away
Cause the light is leaving town
To a place that I can’t be
There’s no apologies

Just go on
Just go on
There’s still so many things
I wanna to say to you
But go on
Just go on
We’re bound by blood that’s moving
From the moment that we started
From the moment that we started

I see perfect little lives
Watch the shadows of the clouds
And the surface of the ocean out the window of a plane
I get nervous when I fly
I’m used to walking with my feet
Turbulence is like a sigh that I can’t help but over think

What is the purpose of my life
If it doesn’t ever do
With learning to let it go
Live vicariously through you
You could do the same
It’s the least you can do
Cause it’s a lonely little chain
If you don’t add to it

So go on
Just go on
There’s so many things
I wanna say to you
Go on
Just go on
We’re bound by blood and love
From the moment that we started
Just go on
Just go on
There’s still so many things
I wanna say to you
Just go on
Just go on
We’re bound by blood that’s moving
From the moment that we started
From the moment that we started

Listen to it here

Lyrics from: http://www.sing365.com/index.html


By the ticks..

This weekend we had a localization camp where I was presenting about the oddities that we face while translating user interface messages. Before I proceed further, I’d like to clarify that this post is not about the camp (that would come sometime later). Rather this is about something that I mentioned during my presentation. About why we spent time, efforts, money twisting things to fit into a presentable shape. We do so because it affects our choices. The flexibility to choose the least inconvenient alternative.

Everyday we are faced with myriad choices which range from the seemingly trivial to universe shaking ones. Should I wear the blue or the black tee this morning? Do I run to the bus stop or walk a little fast? Is it ok to take a coffee break now or in another 5 minutes? What goes best with my lunch – tomatoes or fries? Should I put in my papers now or slog it out for another 25 days? You get the drift. And how does one go about making them? Speaking for myself, primarily I am a heart-governed person. I believe in spontaneous actions which are more natural and are not diluted by calculations. At an younger age, this was tipped more towards fallacy. Later, the urgency of actions is significantly controlled into a balance, by the worldly wisdom gathered over years. However, the after effects of these choices eventually still hit the heart. In all sorts of ways.

The natural choice while picking an alternative is to lean towards the one that would present the least amount of pain. Or perhaps spare oneself of a higher degree of inconvenience. pjp has a meticulous equation for this:

choice = incentive x convenience

Effectively, each alternative course of action throws up the potential outcomes and possibilities, mostly derived from past happenings. If eating fries for lunch gave me a burst of pimples on the left cheek – twice, I’d naturally be disinclined to make that choice. Nipping the possibility of exploring whether on the third attempt I would get the pimples of the right cheek or nothing at all.

Unfortunately, choices we make about people come with a significant amount of baggage. And most importantly they come with responses. Fries won’t come sobbing back to you if you remove them from your tray. People on the other hand may go through a turmoil of emotions, based upon the choice you make. You could make them feel important, happy, relieved, disturbed, discarded, or even traumatized at times. While making our choices I wonder if we weigh these potential responses or just go by what would make our own lives less worrisome. i.e. the less the worry, the more the incentive to choose that option.

At times these choices come back to haunt us. For their harshness. Guilt. Sometimes even for the detachment and defeat we concede. Especially when the only way out is to crawl into a shell (and in the process also say goodbye to civilities), disrupt our own lives with significant inconveniences, because the other alternatives are loaded with ammo to scathe us further. And I am scared of them. It beats me, about whats really the incentive when faced with a lose-lose situation. Its definitely not peace of mind, neither is it martyrdom.

Currently playing on a loop for me: O re bande from Lahore

Iss kadar tha bekhabar, ke khaam kha aazma liya
Sau duayein bech kar, maathe ka boja paa liya


When I was growing up in Kolkata, there was this bunch of kids in the colony who used to play together in the nearby ground. One of them was a little older than the rest and was not very welcome to join the group, for reasons I don’t remember very well now. So one day he was watching the cricket teams being formed from the distance and sauntered into the ground when it was obvious that the teams were uneven and could do with one extra player. But neither team was willing to take him in. It fell upon a smooth talking chap – lets call him A – to get rid of him. A, coolly takes him by the shoulder and tells him – ‘Dude, know what? Everyone has some friends to play with and some friends to fight with. You are my fight friend, so go home now’. (সব্বার বুঝলি কিছু খেলার বন্ধু থাকে আর কিছু ঝগড়া করার বন্ধু থাকে। তো তুই হলি আমার ঝগড়া করার বন্ধু। তাই এবার বাড়ি যা।) Well, the episode sounds a little harsh now, especially coming from 13 year old kids. But it was not too bad then, when getting rid of a pesky kid was of utmost importance to maintain the equilibrium in the playground.

What reminded me of this episode was an article I saw yesterday in the TOI while gobbling down cereals. It was about the different kind of friends a woman “should” have. (They made it sound like those articles about the essential elements for one’s wardrobe or picnic basket.) The list includes the following and my summaries from the description:

1. Lifestyle buddy – A person with whom you would share much of your elementary lifestyle zones – grocery store, supermarket, child’s school.
2. Comfort blanket friend – A friend whom one has grown up with
3. 9-5 friend – A close friend at the workplace
4. All-weather friend – A later life version of the comfort blanket friend
5. Man-mate – Non-romantic close chum.

Probably most of us have friends whom we could identify in the roles above and into some more. But never have I thought of categorizing them so explicitly. I don’t have any siblings and most of my cousins are way too old to have been considered of any importance or coolness when I was of school going age. The feeling was mutual, although its a different story now. My funworld centered around my friends – from school and the neighbourhood. I never understood why some silly kids used to bawl at the school gate, wanting to go back home. duh! I lost touch with most of my friends (read ‘nearly all’) from my first school because we had to leave the town urgently due to a medical emergency wrt my mum and since we were planning to move bases anyways in a couple of months, I never went back. As luck would have it, my blog brought me back in touch with a couple of them and we are very much connected now. From second school onwards and up to my present workplace, I have always had one very close ‘comfort blanket friend’ (as per earlier description) to grow up with at each stage. These days they are across oceans, in different continents, and have perhaps not met me in half a decade. But we never require a ‘hello’ to start off a conversation. We have our own set of greetings and pounces that are considered good enough. We may not even be aware of the goings on in each other daily life, unlike earlier times. Yet the spontaneity persists in the relationship, which keeps the bond going on without any visible hiatus of time and distance.

And then came along the boys. Creatures from the unknown world. Somehow it wasn’t too difficult getting along with them either. Once the initial hiccups of figuring out civil interactions were overcome, their vulnerabilities were revealed too. Their career decisions, heartbreaks, vanities and uncertainties were no different from ours. As a result some more bonds were made. These created comfort zones, where insecurities could be shredded to bits. Each side revealed the others perspective about things that we encountered, which helped us understand how the other half of the population functioned. Also, this established that men and women can be ‘friends’. Friends who can love each other affectionately, without any trappings of a romantic relationship.

Every other day I come across some kind of a forwarded mail or blog or some other cotton candy fluff promoting the virtues of ‘true friendship’ in rhymed verses and 10 point lists. Probably it works for a lot of people. Personally, I believe its the honesty of intent, spontaneity of actions, and respect of personal space that go a long way to establish faith and affection between people who value each other as friends, and keep them in their thoughts.


[Warning: Long post and very little work related observations.]

First up, wishing everyone a New Year filled with lots of hope, happiness and peace of mind.

The year 2009 had started like any other groggy winter morning. The earlier evening a few of us had walked down amidst the heavy traffic to Koregaon Park after work, in search of a place to eat out. After being turned down from a few of the shiny places, we found one small little neat place to perch ourselves, with Chinese food, conversation and chaos outside on the streets. I haven’t been blogging much during the year, but there have been many occasions which perhaps I would have liked to document. I picked up a few and just to make it a little fun, added a few pictures. Here goes.

Thanks to Ramky, a few weeks into the New Year we landed at Goa for a long weekend. The cottage was right next to the beach at Calangute and we even found a beach shack nearby, where we headed each morning for breakfast. After endless seafood, sunsets and aimless walking around, on the last day we simply sat around and lazed in the shade of the shack. This little sail boat passed us by a couple of times.

There were quite a few ‘firsts’ for me this year. I traveled on the longest flight of my life (~16 hours) and found myself in another country. Australia. The skies were the brighest shade of blue that I had seen in a long time. I returned with a first hand view of an alternative way the machinery of daily life goes on. Also, I got to meet many wonderful people whom I have known for a long time now. The picture here has been taken from the Kurilpa Bridge on the Brisbane River and on the left are the skyscrapers of the Central Business District of Brisbane.

During the annual Autumn festival of Durga Puja, we visited the family home in Guwahati and the place which was my first home, Shillong. It was an potpourri of varied emotions ranging from ecstasy to dejection. Its all here. However, I am sure about one thing now: there are many places where I can trace my roots to, but none of them can ever be called a hometown.

Our home-base Pune is not very far away from Aurangabad, which is the gateway to the World Herigate Sites of Ellora and Ajanta caves. Due to general laziness, lack of time, and other blah blah excuses we never got around to visit them. Enter Piyush Yaduvanshi – master travel planner. A weekend plan was put together and off we went in a shiny black car, driving through lush green open spaces dotted with sunflower fields and windmills. At some places, the monsoon beat down at us. First stop was Ellora and the majestic Kailash temple (picture on the left), carved out from a single rock. It is hard to even imagine how this structure was slowly etched out by 6 generation of artisans. Most of the caves in Ajanta were adorned with murals, resplendent with the bright colours that were inked in 2000 years ago (picture on the right). The others have sculptures cut out of the rock.. notable among them is of the Buddha in a sleeping posture.

Sometime during the year, cia.vc said that I had made 2000 commits. yay!

After ages of procrastination, I got myself a new bicycle this year. Along with it came two trainers (pictures above). I am yet to muster enough courage to venture out into main street traffic, but every time I cycle around by myself I can hear two voices in my head egging me on. Whats more, I earned two wonderful friends in the process.

The year is dotted with the many things that kept happening during each of the 365 days. The maniacal work days, finding new craziness for the weekends, late night adventures with cupboards and racks stuck in stairwells (a story for some other time), insightful chats over cups of tea, experiments with food, serious battles over IPL loyalty, new furniture, OS releases, first day shows at movies, et al. Amidst everything its the wonderful people around who keep us grounded, an alternate family bonded by our own making and miles away from home.

Well, thats how 2009 ended for me.

As I sign off this post, the 2nd day of 2010 has already begun. Another cycle of endless opportunities and to-do lists begin. The wishes have been passed around and received, now for the serious work to bring home the bacon. (Like the guy in this picture; clicky here for the details.) And amidst it all there are the many demons to slay and choices to make. Sometimes its a choice between insanity and evanescence.

Resurfacing with a tag

First up.. Wishes for a Happy Sankranti, Pongal, Lohri, Bhogali Bihu and all the nice things that are being celebrated today. I was up till nearly midnight last night trying my hand at making pithe (পিঠে). Nothing fancy, just the commong “churi-pithe” (চুড়ি পিঠে) that looks similar to “samosas”, albeit flatter. Its called “Karanji” in Maharashtra. The fun bit was, I could not make the zig-zag design on them, when I tried the way I had seen my mum do it. So I had left that bit for later and went on with the stuffings. Later on, I picked one up again and this time I could do it, sort of okayish. The reason was, my mum was primarily left-handed and I am not. So I was trying to emulate what I had seen her do and failed miserably when I tried it the first time. The next time, instincts kicked in and voila! Anyways, pictures/procedures would follow soon on my recently started food-blog.

Well, things that happened since the last post include:
1. A whirlwind trip home and spending some nice time with daddy.
2. Saw the most obscenely big mall in South City, Kolkata (courtsey: ishita+surajit) and had some lovely food at Prince (courtsey: sayamindu)
3. A biker decided to dislodge the rear bumper of our car
4. Mad rush with finance management for the entire family (includes me+husband)
5. An enjoyable sprint for KDE 4.2 to complete the required bits translated
6. A potential Firefox 3.0.6/3.1 release for bn-IN
7. A one-day trip to Lonavala with ramkrsna, rakesh, kashyap. (Fultoo fun)
8. Started an itsy-bitsy terrace garden. Hopefully, by the end of the year it would grow much larger (and if those pigeons from the neighbourhood stop eating the plants)
9. Playing around with poterminology
10. Some more events, both in the personal and professional front that makes 24 hours seem just too short a time.
… can’t remember the rest. Its been a bit hectic for a while and I just decided to gift myself around 2 hours of time today, to catch up on the pending things-to-do list. (An update in the blog update was one of them)

I might have put off writing this post, if Pike had not tagged me. Ok so here goes:

The rules:

  1. Link to your original tagger(s) and list these rules in your post.
  2. Share seven facts about yourself in the post.
  3. Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names and the links to their blogs.
  4. Let them know they’ve been tagged.

Seven things:

  1. /me once got lost in the streets of Shillong when she was in Kindergarten (but she figured out the way to get back home.. and thankfully one parent was home to inform the other parent, who was still searching frantically.)
  2. /me secretly wished for specs since childhood. Result: stuck with a pair with complicated trappings since sometime of the end of the aforementioned childhood.
  3. /me NEVER played/plays Holi, but likes coloring pictures even now!
  4. /me does’nt know how to swim. (Although the school I went to promised that they would teach us how to)
  5. /me has never lived in a hostel
  6. /me is terrified of snakes (Even on television. I get nightmares just by the thought of them)
  7. /me detests dill leaves and has learnt atleast 3 names (in sylheti, bengali and marathi) for it, to make sure she does not eat it by mistake.

Ok and now for my shikaars!

  1. Pradeepto
  2. Ramkrsna (This would be too interesting)
  3. Barkha
  4. Santhosh
  5. Mdious (In the hope that he makes a post in his now hibernating blog)
  6. Ankita
  7. Aanjhan

Note: Folks, feel free to break the chain. Its totally up to you. 🙂