Do Not Disturb

Even when the whole world goes berserk out of economic turbulence or a sudden onset of apocalypse or even a nuclear holocaust, some blessed lazy souls never give a tiniest of a botheration during their half draped blanket and a humming AC, cradling them to an eternal sleep on a Saturday morning. On one such occasion of my serendipity in travelling to far off places with chicks around, I felt a sudden tap on my bums, yanking me into the naked reality from my dream, flipping me to my back, left me gaping at the ceiling fan which gave me back an irate stare. Only moms have special privileges on their kids to tap on such ‘awww’ places.

My mom in her mission to shoo away the sleep monster, had her presence in my room equipped with broomstick. Her innate ability to wake me up was commendable. It was 10.30 am when I felt it’s too early to bid adieu to my bed. We spend most of our ‘precious’ time in bed, sometimes in the couch and the in dining table. I felt such preciousness is less valued by moms and dads when they wake you up for getting Odonil or Urid Dal from the nearby departmental store on a Saturday morning.

This time it was a different scenario altogether. I disengaged myself from my bed, brushed my teeth, performed my morning ablutions sincerely, drank Boost flipping the pages of TOI (Yes, I read TOI and I can still tell you that Pranab Mukherjee is the recent president of India, Mary Kom won bronze in the ongoing Olympics for India and also discriminate between the amount of fairness ranging from lowest value of school uniform washed in Tide Detergent to the extremities of Anushka Sharma’s underarms, courtesy Nivea White, without reading The Hindu newspaper!)

I kick started my bike and my dad hopped into the pillion seat.

***

As I parked my bike in front of the old dilapidated building situated in the intricate corners of the road, with murky waters by its side, bearing the name board – Life Insurance Corporation of India, I recollected the number of times I had asked my dad to open an online account in the bank for the ease of all financial transactions. I still go blitzkrieg on the idea of standing in the long queue in a building with puddle walls and messy counters.

The large hall was uncomfortably pregnant with umpteen number of paper files all over the tables, old computers running Widows XP with CRT monitors, the noisy fans suspended from the high ceilings, bespectacled large bindi, nose-ringed women, men in their dullest of the formal shirts and pants with slippers, their forehead adorned with markings of all colors covering most of the wavelength of a light spectrum – connoting their religious inclination towards all gods, caged in each counters with stuttering printers and monitors, counting the currency notes – frequently salivating them for friction. My dad appended himself in one of the queues and I was asked to join another – age old technique to advance faster in the concurrent queues!

I sometimes wondered the advancement of IT in our country and its reach to common man. My own dad was a standing example of how few people are still not comfortable with the IT and other utilities. One online banking account and one debit card – could have solved this weekend agony. I was slowly advancing in the queue and my dad was still in the same position in the other one. I had never given company to my dad for such visits. He still does all the electricity bill payment, Insurance premium or sometimes money withdrawal by paying a visit to the offices/banks located in the oldest of the buildings in the city.

“Why don’t you just pay it online using net banking or Debit card payment?” This must be my all time declarative mood when in confrontation with my dad on such matters. “I don’t know how to use it”, should be my dad’s all time reply when in confrontation with me on such matters.

As I handed over the cheque along with the premium payment letter to the lady in counter, with the details of the premium such as the policy number, policy maturity date, amount assured and next date of premium payment etc etc and etc, she gave a quick look into the letter noting down the policy number and started updating my details in the computer having a policy management software which had the boring grey application interface developed in Visual Basic 6. I know they couldn’t afford to procure softwares developed by CMMI level 5 firms. Such is life in government offices.

LIC premium successfully paid.

***

As I entered my room after an hour drive, in the scorching sun of 1.00 pm, I released myself from the Tee and jeans, leaving me just in my jockey, in front of the mirror. What I witnessed in the mirror couldn’t match euphoric cosmic display of celestial bodies.

Half of my arms covering the elbows to the fist have taken a dark form compared to the other covered regions of my body. Exactly at the point where my Tee’s sleeve ends, I could find a clear demarcation line. The skin tone above the line heading to my shoulders and the torso were as clear as milk (!) – Fair and flawless. The region below the sleeve line including the elbows, leading to my wrists and fingers were dark and shadowy. It looked as if I had dipped both my hands into a drum full of black paint, just above my elbow and had pulled it back. The afternoons are just effing hot that it tans your skin so badly and now I have to keep my sleeves covered for a week or so to get back the uniform distribution of my skin tone in the arms (Yes, guys too worry about this at times!) I didn’t want to feel like a zebra when roaming around in any of tam-brahm functions topless!

I’ve decided to wear my full sleeved Tee whenever I go out in the day time.

***

With advancement in the technology, there should be a better way to convince parents to chuck off the age old methods of financial transaction by filling out challans to withdraw money and to deposit in cheque to transfer money to someone and maintaining a passbook for all those transactions. The ease of net banking and fund transfers should be imparted to them somehow. Though I strictly adhere to internet for almost everything  – booking tickets – for bus or a movie, to transfer and receive money from friends or colleagues, I am somehow finding it a herculean task to cascade it to my parents as they are so insecure about the online frauds and malpractices. Thanks to the Dina Malar, Dina Thanthi, Mangayar Malar tamil dailies/monthlies which inflate such news and present them in a form of articles.

My mom warned me one day, ‘You are using Facebook right? Be careful in Facebook, it seems girls are conning guys by putting ‘beautiful photos’ and in the end killing them in a remote place. I read in this magazine. These days guys need to be careful’. I didn’t know whether to appreciate her affection towards me or to curse the non-awareness of her social networking usage. I remember my sister being warned for FB usage sometime back as putting a girls’ photo in the internet may invite more guys. I accept their concern but the way the information is falsely reported or incorrectly projected is definitely creating a false paradigm on things. One or two bad examples are subjugating the whole system in gutter. Exceptions cannot be examples.

Such cases have left a subterfuge in them about the internet way of doing things. I showcased my dad how it is easy to pay online and would take just 5 minutes for the whole process, by paying property tax online from the website’s net banking facility. My dad was also kind of elated, seeing the payment receipt which was generated in PDF and was available for quick download.

***

When will they learn and not disturb my weekend sleep!? 😉

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Nostalgia !

I donno why now-a-days I become so nostalgic!

There are lots of factors which are governing me these days. One of them being longing for olden days again. The childhood ecstasy is lost. What have I become today? A 23 year old male, who can earn a decent 5 digit salary, by being himself busy all time from Monday to Friday. The possibility of taking some time off, from the hectic work schedule is only a weekend happening. So, what is that we have gained by being an adult? I get very less time for my family. I find less time to go out. I do not get any time to splurge in the non digital thing out of my cubicle.

Well, lots of things are in list that I cherished the most. The train travelling, for instance, is one of the most lovable one in my list. I’ve not been to railway station for quite a long time. It is obviously my work schedule that imprisoned my freedom. From the dusk to dawn, I keep fidgeting with the chunk of code that governs the so called Mainframes. I reach home at night and then have something for my tummy and then sleep. During college days, I used to frequent to Chennai for holidays. Those platforms, announcements, Higginbotham book stall, the trip charts are few things that kindles the past memories even today.

We used to get lots of holidays during school days and college. When we leave for our relatives’ place, I love those platforms were you see swarm of people ranging from a small 1 year infant, 18 year girls who are more concerned about the few inches of cosmetic that encroaches their face, those romeos who would show off their styles in front of a group of girls, those strict fathers who are more worried about their son’s/daughter’s marks in the coming semester examination, a sick old lady who expects from a newly married son, to see her grandson to play with her soon after they come back from honeymoon. And there are more in this list too. I always loved to practically feel the Doppler Effect whenever the super fast express approaches and leaves the station.

“The Doppler effect (or Doppler shift), named after Austrian physicist Christian Doppler who proposed it in 1842, is the change in frequency of a wave for an observer moving relative to the source of the waves. It is commonly heard when a vehicle sounding a siren approaches, passes and recedes from an observer. The received frequency is increased (compared to the emitted frequency) during the approach, it is identical at the instant of passing by, and it is decreased during the recession.”

It’s like I have lost something in life. I donno something keeps pricking me. Corporate life has given me glass doors, Air conditioned work place, and ergonomically designed cushion chairs, free coffee, large food courts where you get thing you wanted, Smart card based Identity Card with which you will be able to enter areas only into which you have been given access, security and most importantly Money. But what it is that I’m losing? Sleep, Rest, Peace and friends and something more

Those days were like you had lots of time and lot more friends. Now it is totally different. We have lot more time for work but very less friends. You should appoint a weekend for meeting up. You leave home by the time people are yet to wake up and reach home by the time all would have dozed off. The next day again the same routine and it goes on and on and on. Why all this?

I hated exams but now, it was something tolerable. I wanted to get back to those times which were spent with someone who you do not know before – the times, when you expect a new roommate in your hostel, the time when you pass a sheet of you exam paper, during the internal examination and both of you pass, the times when you go for dinner together with friends and share the happening of the class, the times when you do group studies for the next day exam, the times when four or five spend together in one’s room during a weekend, chatting all day and sleeping all over the floor with 4 to five alarms set.

Is it the life’s play to the human beings, which makes us long for the past, than to live in the present?

We always say that, those good old days were memorable, cherishable and all those adjectives which makes them long for the past. We listen to jungle book song and say, “wow..that was a good old song,..”. We have it as the caller tune and boast about it. We listen to old songs and say, “those were oldies melodies”. We still keep those old clocks with pendulum and hesitate to buy a new one. We still keep the old model mobile with keypad in its very bad state, with all those numberings scrubbed and display scratched and we say, “It’s the first mobile, I got”. We still say “Madras” instead of “Chennai”. I do understand that it gives a sense of belongingness, but why is it that the present is so uninterested at times?

Why don’t we like the present? Is it because, it is bitter at times? I certainly do not have answers for these questions. But one thing is sure. Unless, you feel comfortable yourselves in the present with your surroundings, you won’t be able to love the present as it is. Only when you get peace and happiness, you will be able to appreciate the present. Only when you get time for everything, you may pat the present and say, “Good Boy”.

I’m trying to make myself comfortable with the present. Hope, I’ll get peace and happiness in whatever I do. I do not hold grudges to accept this. But the Nostalgia is always there.

There are also people who always think about the future and they forget to live in the present. We study hard in 10th standard to get into good school for 11th and 12th. We study hard in 12th to get good marks in the board examination. Once we get into a good college, we are asked to study hard to get into good company. Once we get into good company, we struggle hard to save money for the future. We struggle hard to get a good bride to our Home. We get things in loan; build houses in loan, irrespective of our inadequate earning; we pay the dues in EMI, so that something big will be left behind for us in the future. We get married, have children, then we need to save things for their education, and then we need to worry about their education, college, and…

Excuse ME. Gimme a Break. Pleeeeeeeeeese !! Life is a vicious circle

But what is the ultimate requirement? Are we living in the present? We forget that, we are attaining the future every second and we should be able to live in the present and think about the future, without subjecting ourselves to agony in the present. But people are so afraid of seeing themselves in the near future with nothing in hand, so they always strive hard to preserve things for the future in spite of their tormenting life in the present.

Well, in this way, few minds longs for the past and forget about the present. Few minds which always think about the future and forgets to live in the present.

Let me make few things clear….

  1. Always live in the present.
  2. Do think about the future, but do not take actions that will put you in restriction in the present
  3. Always, olden days may look beautiful, but it has nothing to contribute for the present. So don’t waste time thinking about the past all time.
  4. Live your life truthfully and peacefully in the present. Do think about future occasionally
  5. Cherish each and every moment of your life. After all, you don’t know what next!

One SMS I received long back, which tells about life….

“Life is a strict than a teacher.

A teacher teaches the lesson and

then keeps the exam. But Life

Keeps the exam first and

then teaches the lesson !!!!”

Really True !…..