Thursday, September 25, 2008

ThOsE WeRe ThE BeSt DaYs Of My LiFe!!

Aki, Aloke and Me (The 3 Stooges)

This blog is exclusively dedicated to my 2 best friends from College. I still remember like it were yesterday, we had just joined college, me and Aloke toh, had come directly form a CBSE school so were new to the whole college fiasco. I remember behaving like a total loser on the first day when I was asked to introduce Mamu (FYI Mamu was the nick name of Dipti Susan.) Aloke was like this fultoo outgoing and hyper-active chick. Aki, was sitting between the two chechis (ok if you are wondering what I am referring to, they were the twin Mallu sisters in our section.) So when Aki nad I meet we introduce ourselves 'Hi I am Akshaya,' and she says 'Hi I am Akshata,' I was thinking in my mind why is she repeating my name and that too incorrectly. From that day onwards till the three years of our college every one have confused with our names. During the second semester we actually became great friends, at least twice a week we used to go for the latest movies at Urvashi theater. We always preferred the Gandhi Class (from row) and reasoned that the AC was better down and of course, in our first year the ticket was just 30 bucks ( can anyone beat that??) now it has gone upto 75 (Gawd, inflation I say!!.) The ticket counter guy toh always had tickets for us whenever we went to pick them up in the lunch breaks. I also remember our weekly or sometimes two times a week eat-outs at Janatha Sagar (actually that dingy hotel's name was Jayanthi Villas but we never remembered the right name and ended rechristening it. ) Aki do you remember, in our 2nd and 3rd year after I got an I pod, we used to listen to Bryan Adams songs like it was Venkateshwara Suprabhatam, in lemme think Anuradha, Vishwini, (remember Abhay calling her freeway... bolta tha shuru toh ho gayi, par khatam hi nahi hoti!) and Ravi Shankar's classes. In Meryn's class we both used to sit in that dark corner and go to sleep after a heavy lunch. How can I ever forget Ravi Shankar Sir (he was the self proclaimed extra smart dude who attemped to teach us Bio Chemistry) I remember Lakshmi had kept a separate notebook just to note down the way he spoke. His most common one that I can remember off-hand being 'Look at here!' and his never ending praises for Israel. I remember one time Vishu was teaching ABT (Animal Bio Technology,) if I am not wrong she went on teaching the same media preparation ( which was only the first chapter) for almost the entire semster. 

I also cherish our bike rides over Aki's tiny antique Scooty Pep. I remember me and Aki zooming at 60 or 70 kmph on her Scooty over the K.R. Market flyover. Also, our favorite hangouts at Gandhi Bazaar, I am not able to get the name of that hotel where DG sir had explained about his lab Aki, do u remember?? Roti Ghar, Ice Thunder, Brahmin's Coffee Bar wo ho! and the list went on. I also do fondly remember mine and Aloke's Commercial Street shopping sprees. We used go on and on the caption 'shop till we drop,' was apt for us!

Me and Aki 
The birthday gifting and surprises planning was the best part! Two of us would do the entire planning and screw it all up before the third person's birthday lol! Aki, u remember, Aloke's feet long self-made birthday card. God! the glitters that we used, my furniture, my dad's trousers and even my maid had the glitters and sparkles for a week after that. And when I had a sleepover at ur place for making the card, we were awake till like 3 or 4 in the morning after 2-3 Matt Damon movies ;-P and the Tandoor dinner which was Shivu uncle's birthday treat. We were so zombie the next day in Manjula's class.

Aloke and me in front of Ice Thunder

Our Mangalore trip to check out KMC, Manipal was also kick ass it was so much fun with Aki's mom and bro. It was more of pleasure trip than educational trip. 

Our last minute preps just before exams, buying the semester books just the previous day of the semester exam. The way we used to bunk the VAP and Indian Constitution classes and end up getting attendance. 

Most of all our lab shenanigans, Aki and me doing the Recombinant DNA Technology course at that Sridhar labs, then that 'Shubro look-alike' guy at JIVAS lab, Aki, u used to snore after lunch when he used to teach us the theory part in Immunology project. We used to take his case royally and he was so slow that he never realized that we were pulling his leg.  And the way you fought with that librarian. She still gets cold feet when she sees you or even me (later when I was doing the Clinical Bio Chem course, she was so relieved that u were not around, she even said that to me :-P) In the college labs all we did in the PTC labs was prepare media and get them contaminated. Our plant cultures used to get flicked. And Abhay, Aki and me sitting in the labs with Abhay playing the fool and telling us all about his ex girl friends and how they ditched him (I am sure Abhay is going to kill me when he listens to this.) Aki u remeber, once I was pricking Abhay's finger during the immunology lab and Abhay's used lancet pricked me. I was so freaked, I made that lab attendant who was he Channe Gowda or Malle Gowda also nervous, I poured like half a bottle of alcohol on my hand to get it disinfected. Ramya maam scared me further saying ask Abhay if he has HIV and when I did actually ask him Abhay was ready to kill me. Also, in the Genetic labs, Chetan, Avik, Aki and me used to play almost 20- 25 rounds of Bingo on the lab filter papers. Rajshekar sir had caught us playing so many times. 

Even in the class, that Chetan had such big ears, he used to hear to all our talks and keep laughing! One day, Aki and me took Chetan’s case, that why he was eves dropping. And then who can ever forget Shanti Iyer, our Genetics HOD, god she used to give a 1000W smile even while blasting the hell out of all of us. Looked like her husband works with Colgate manufacturers and gets loads for her. I remember once during her extra class, it was really hot and the AC was switched off, Hayne (full name Hayne Marcus Fernandes) who is from Bahrain was sitting and fanning himself frantically when Shanti was attempting to explain the LAC operon repressor concept which is quite complicated to understand. So, she got pissed off and shouted, so she use to call him ‘Hainee’ instead of ‘Heyn’ she says, ‘Heyn, you live in a hot desert yourself and you cannot take Bangalore’s climate  and are busy fanning yourself with the notebook in which you should be taking down notes, shame on you!’

@ Coffee Day, we landed her after celebrating Aloke's birthday 

One more trip that I remember was the one to A Rocha NGO, all that the guide showed us after a 4-5 kilometres trek were heaps of crap and said that this was the wild elephant crapping here. We didn’t even see one elephant there and these guys were photographing the crap like it was some UFO. God it was so funny and that Ramya maam and Reena climbing the mango tree to ear raw mangoes lol! I know we were the most lunatic bunch of students, professors, lab attendants and principal (Sundu, speaking like Karunanidhi in a croaking voices for ever.)


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy Birthday Saranya!!

On Saru's Birthday in the night and at the Our Place Restaurant on
20th Sept ' 2008. This collage has been created using Picasa 3.0.
Isn't it really cool??
( I meant Picasa 3.0 here, not my collage :P )

Friday, September 19, 2008


This was the first time that I was going to staying away from home. I had to relocate for my first job from Bangalore to Hyderabad in July last week last year. Seems like just yesterday, it was initially fultoo exciting and fun when I was staying in the company guest house for almost 3 weeks with my other outstation colleagues, who had joined the company along with me. But, when I started looking out for places to stay I realized the complexity of the situation. Thank God! I met my roomate in the flight to Hyderabad. She was from my own college but we had never met in the three years of our degree. We went out apartment hunting from the next day we reached Hyd. And then as the wise men would say 'welcome to reality!' it dawned on us. The brokers were so lazy and hopeless. they would say, 'if we find something we will let u know, but do not rely on us. You carry on your own hunt.' We went to the most pathetic houses that one can not even imagine being livable. Finally, after a lot of persitence and persiverence, we found 'our' house. Our parents did offer to come over and help us look for places and settle down. But we were adamant on doing it all by ourselves, otherwise parents would have come here and went their frustration (of not finding a house and being away form their jobs for so long) on us! Thats what happened with another colleague, whose folks came over to get her settled. It was a nightmare for her to handle her parents and hunt for houses. Finally, we found a 'good' house. It is a duplex. The owner, an old couple stay downstairs and we the 'devils' live above. I remeber our first shopping expedition to Big Bazaar. We 3 house mates went shopping and picked up like 8-10 xtra big bags of all the house hold stuffs. From dustbins, buckets to jhadoo, door mats, containers to store grocery etc. Later that night, after our domestic shoppings spree and loading it all in an auto we decided to head to one of our colleagues place to pick up our second hand 24 inches television that he was selling for 3K! Can you ever beat that. So with out even getting our first pay we swiped our parents (only use in case of emergency) ATM cards to pick up the TV from his house, his house was in such a god-forsaken place (almost out of the city) at 10 o' clock in the night!! And we were all new to the city. We finally located his place and collected the TV. The damn huge TV, plus 10 bags of shopping at Big Bazaar, plus three of us (all well built) in the back of that puny auto, in the inclined roads of Banjara Hills, galvanting around at 11 pm in the night, with none of us knowing the way back to our new home!! A sensible person would have freaked out, but not us, we were laughing our heart out!! This is a day-to-day common incident at our place. Moral of the story-all the four of us apartment mates are crazy as crazy can ever be!!
Me and my housemates at our psycho best!
Trying to fit into one frame of my camera phone,
during our trip to Suryalanka. Love you guys!
We make the most 'whaco' team ever :-)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Sunrise on the Beach, at Suryalanka

I have always wanted to document my traveling experiences so that I can look back and remember for a long time to come. Let me start with a few of the latest trips I have made in this year. At the beginning of the year I went for a trip to Suryalanka - Yes you got that right the first time! Its not Srilanka this was in the first week of February. I had been to this place along with my roommates.

Overview of the place

The Suryalanka Beach is situated at a distance of 9 kilometers from the historical town of Bapatla, in the Guntur district of the state of Andhra Pradesh. It is a quiet, hidden pristine clean beach on the east coast..this is the closest to Hyderabad at around a distance of 350 kms is Suryalanka. Not many people know of this place; the state tourism department is the only one to offer a fantastic beach side resort called Punnami beach resort. So you have the beach practically for yourselves, with the waves a few meters just walk into the sea from your room in a jiffy. Otherwise you can enjoy the fantastic sight of the waves and waters to the horizon from the balcony of your cottages or enjoy the sea breeze from the pergola just by the beach. A schools of three dolphins could be spotted at about a few hundred meters from the beach .

Food, sight-seeing and shopping

One note of caution, this place is definitely not for the ones looking for the typical tourist spas, souvenir shops, resorts with discs, gym and swimming pools, etc. or ones expecting a shoppers paradise. This place is virgin and untouched. This is its beauty. There is only this one AP tourism resort with basic good clean AC cottages and the fantastic sea and beach. It is a perfect weekend get away, where you can relax with some nice drinks and simple preparation of dal, rice, rotis etc, for vegetarians and fishand other sea food for the spicy food with drinks, bon fires and music on the sea side....I couldn't ask for more. The more adventurous types can go on long walks by the sea or venture into the surrounding fishing village or better still the wilderness by the seaside. When in the restaurant, stick to the local andhra preparations...thats what they make best....great spicy hot curries, hot sambar, and not to miss the hot steaming idli and chutney prepared for breakfast!!! Please do not expect to be served chinese, continental and italian cuisine at this place.

Sruthi, Saru and me playing on the beach

For siteseeing you can visit Bapatla, where there is the 19th century famous Bahunarayan temple. There is apparently a meuseum and zoo at this place too ( we did not visit the zoo and the museum.)

At the Bahunarayan temple, Bapatla

For shopping, we went to Chirala, this is a small town about 10 km from Bapatla, this is also called the textile hub of Andhra Pradesh. We visited the Mahatma Gandhi cloth market there and trust me it is crazy. There are about a hundred cloth wholesale shops here. The cotton, polycotton fabrics are damn cheap here. This place is famous for its cotton sarees too. You must bargain really well here if you want a good deal. The price difference that I found is, we get cloth materials almost at half and one third of what we get in Hyderabad or other places. So for all you girls, who dont sway the 'branded' way here is ur chance to grap some real cheal and cool stuff. The kurtas fabric that I picked up from here was for 100 bucks the entire material and is still going strong.

Activities & things to do

Sun, sand and sea!!!! Play in the waves, swim if you dare, make sand castles, bury your friends under dunes of sand, get a tan, walk along the beach, explore the beach for shells, crabs, driftwood etc. You can get up early to see the spectacular sunrise and dolphins so close to the shore. You can also view the fishermen getting their daily catch. Evenings are for some beach games or a bonfire by the shore along with some soothing music.

Enjoying the view of the beach from our cottage steps in the evening

Travel tips, How to reach, travel warnings etc.

Reach Bapatla by the APSRTC semi-delux buses (no ac Volvos ply on this route) or by many Hyderabad-Chennai trains ; Suryalanka is about 9 kms from there. You can take the local eight seater tempos to drop you to Suryalanka. They are damn cheap. Trust me! for 4 people they charged 40 bucks to drop us to the resort 9 km away.

Two routes from Hyderabad-
A) Hyd-Vijayawada[NH9] - Vijayawada-Guntur-Chilakaluripet{NH5} take left and towards Chirala - Bapatla [ 381 Km] , from 30Km before Vijaywada till chilakaluripet excellent road 6 lane then state road starts which is very good without any potholes but be prepared for speed breakers
B)Hyd-Vijayawada {NH9}- Vijayawada -Guntur{NH5}
Guntur - Bapatla{ state road } via Chebrolu,ponnur [350km] road is good but a 2 lane one without dividers

Please make your resort reservations atleast 2 weeks in advance as there are only 11 cottages and they all are booked for the weekend. The rent for each cottage is Rs. 1000 per each day doule occupancy. For more info on bookings please call/visit any of the APTDC offices in Hyderabad.

Our resort(cottages) by the beach

Please carry your own, drinks, chips, munches, music system, fresbees, balls, etc. As there is not much available around here to buy. You need to come for this stip as though you are going in to the jungle for a camping trip.

All I can say is, you need to experience it! This place truely rocks and I cant wait to get there soon again.


I am NOT really a television buff, but off-late the quality of sitcoms, movies, and the channels has hit an all time super low. I cannot imagine how any average intelligence human can ever laugh at the tackie jokes that are a very dismal attempt to make anyone laugh. I was just surfing the channels the other day and stopped at the Great indian laughter challenge IV. OMG the quality of the jokes (if I can be magnanimous to call them 'jokes') was shocking!! It was painful to stand it for even 5 mins. Then I switch channel and stop at the Rakhi Savant Show, on Zoom TV. God! she spoke utter gibberish!! She is so self obsessed and lunatic. I had to stop to pray god to give her a little sense. This is what I call a true 'timbit' (ok I can imagine a guy 'tsk' ing at this girlie lingo) in true sense. And then come the news channels - Aaj tak and Star News come undisputed firsts in my 'Hit-List.' These two news channels cannot ever end their day without some gossip about Amitabh Bachchan and his family and what Rakhi Savant said or didn' t say. Give me a break!! How the hell am I concenrned what they wear or do in their lives!! You are a national television news channel damn it!! Another thing I wish to add here are the numerous Sting operations that these news channels put up just when they are having a bland day, with out any hot gossip or some tragedy. The news readers put me back to sleep after a nice shower at 7 am in the morning every weekday. They look live devils rambling in fanatic and intense hindi that seems from the prehistoric times!! and every television channel has to host a minimum of 2-3 reality shows (mind you that is the barest minimum one has to have.) Honestly, I really did not know who exactly Ishmeet Singh was (God bless his departed soul) till it was all over BREAKING NEWS on all the news channels and websites. People will never know when Field Marshal Manekshaw died, the man who lonely orchestrated the 1971 War victory against Pakistan. Sometimes I really feel like suing these channels for torturing the common man and doubting the fact that he possesses an organ called brain. To add to my grief are the soon to be released movies and their every 2 mins trailers on all the channels including Sports, News and regional channels. Imagine, just imagine, Priyanka Chopra's new movie's name is 'Chamku.' I almost hypervenrtlated... 'God tussi great ho' has Salman Khan and Amitabh Bachchan one of the two most influential and crowd-puller actors in the Indian film industry. The english channels like Star World and Zee Cafe run episodes that have been aired in the US two years ago and which I have already streamed and watched long ago. Also, we do not hey Star World any more as it has become a paid channel. All the movies screened on Start movies and HBO have been seen by us a minimum of 2 times. Is there any ray of hope?? HELP... This is the reason we spend almost 14-15 hours ( which is almost 90 pc of our waking hours) in the whole day on the internet, even after getting back from office I never get tired of the net. I am really happy that my aversion to the television has translated to my love for reading. At least, I can enjoy and relish a book without it being stereotyped.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

tHiNkiNg AlOuD !!

I LOVE to travel and can' t stay for more than 10 days at a place. I work at Hyderabad, as I am from Bangalore, I visit the place atleast once a month. Apart from that the rest of my leaves spend travelling. The other day I was telling mom, mom I have decided one thing in life, I will never spend more than 2 years in any organization. My mom was like WHAT!! then she lectured me saying, u kids now-a-days dont have any responsibility and all...she rambled on... But this casual statement that I made actually made me retrospect... Being my first job and that too at one of the best companies that any one would ever dream of getting into. If I can have such thoughts here, then I wonder the plight of others who work in lesser employ friendly companies. I have finally decided that going forward (for all those who know me from my job, you will figure out how I used this word ;-)) I will work for 2 yrs in a company - quit - study for at leasr 6 months -Get a new job - work for 2 yrs - quit - travel for 6 months and then the cycle goes on... From childhood I have always been on the move, thanks to my dad's transferable job. I really dont get the feeling of belonging to any place. We consider Bangalore home but I wanted to get out of there too after four years there. There is this feeling of restlessness that grows within me. I feel life is too short and there is so much more to do. Let me see what future holds for me.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

My take on Rock On

The caption of this movie says 'Live your dream,' do we all? I have watched this movie twice ;-) I think that if you love rock music you will instantly like the movie as this is probably the first attempt to create a film on amateur rock bands. I did sometimes feel that the movie was 'inspired' by Jhankar Beats and of course Farhan Akhtar's directorial debut, Dil Chahta Hai. To begin with the first half of the movie was a heavy dose of rock songs playing away one after the other in a gap of 5 mins each.

Rock On is a film about four friends, Luke Kenny, Farhan Akhtar, Arjun Rampal and Purab Kohli who come together to form their band, Magik. They are passionate bunch of people who are trying to get that big break which could change their lives. But that so-called break commands a heavy price and that sees the end of Magik. Almost. A decade later, when things have not exactly turned out the way they hoped would be, they meet again. Thanks to the efforts of Aditya(Farhan Akhtar)'s wife Sakshi (Prachi Desai), who in spite of being married to him for four years, had no inkling about his past, his creative talent and his friends. This film makes all of us retrospect about the compromises we make in our lives for a successful career and are never happy about it.

The music of Rock On has already hit the spot. And you have to watch the film to see how intelligently and sensitively the songs have been used for special moments, when words would never be adequate. There is a scene when Prachi comes back to Aditya, only to see him jamming once again with his rocker friends. It is a special moment, because for the first time in four years, she sees him smile, for the first time, he actually has let his guard down and welcomes her into his life, inviting her on his journey. And that's when one of the most beautiful love songs in the film, Yeh tumari meri batein.. takes over. My next favourite track is Phir dekhiye which come at the fag end of the movie. Apart from this the title track is rocking. The last ten minutes of the movie where Magik reunites and performs again, is a treat to watch and is very beautifully shot.

Farhan Akhtar looks, acts and sings a million bucks. 10/10 for his earnest attempt. Prachi Desai is a good break from the Size Zero mega glam super models who are lately 'gracing' the screen. Her style statement was subtle and classy. She looks great with her trademark 'Juice - Adhuna Akhtar' hairstyle. Purab Kohli is ever green and gives his best as always. Although I heard a lot of people around say that Arjun Rampal looked and acted the best I thought his character seemed like a total loser. Not taking a stance in life and not giving his best. His wife Debbie (Shahana Goswami) steals your heart with her earnst craving to stop working on her husband's fish business. I love the sceane in which she tries appying the moisturiser on her hand says whatever I try doing I cannot get rid of the smell of fish. To sum it up I'd like to say that Farhan Akhtar has kept the trust of his audience intact. He does not disappoint. It is an out and out multiplex film. We can watch a movie like this coz it tries to be different. Go for it !!