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Saturday, December 28, 2013

Mediterranean Sea at Marseille, France

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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

AAP at the helm

Finally a good thing is happening. Arvind Kejriwal will be sworn in as the Chief Minister of Delhi on Saturday. This event is going to make lots of changes. What meaning this development has?
This goes on to prove a point that if a bunch of clean figured person come together and decide they want to change the system, and they take proper steps, the outcome is surely positive. With in a span of 2-3 years, a person rise from an unknown personality directly to the Chief Minister position, is a miracle that doesn't take place every day. This reminds me of  the movie "Nayak" of Anil Kapoor where he becomes the CM of a state just for one day. Of course such events of bringing an unknown personality to limelight do have happened earlier like in case of our PMs ChandraShekhar, I.S Gujral, Devegowda etc. Most of the time these positions were governed by none other than Congress party. Those ministers pretty much just filled the PM position. Congress kept all the chords in their hands and when they wanted they cut it loose. 
Even now, AAP party is making government with the backing of Congress. But the difference is this time Congress can not control it. AAP will work in its way and there won't be much in the hands of Congress.  It will try to spend some time because they know this is not a good time for Congress. But I do expect that this Government probably won't see year 2015. With in a period of 1 year, this government will go down the drain and we may expect elections soon.
Now, its AAP's duty to keep this in mind and make the best use of available time. Do some real work so that people will believe that there is a better way of doing  politics. They should keep in mind that they just have few months to prove themselves. 
Congress on the other hand has fall prey to its own tactics. I wonder why they needed to give support to AAP. By doing this, they are digging their grave. On one side now they can not withdraw their support with out any strong reason. At least for some time. In the mean time, AAP will go on showing how bad governance was given by Congress. No wonder the party workers are unhappy with their core committee's decision of giving support and we saw some violent attack on their party head quarter itself by their own workers. Congress seem to have lost its sense wondering  which way to go to make a better situation themselves. As said, pretty sure they will withdraw support in few months and try for new elections. But this time it may not work in their favor. 
Year 2014 is bringing lots of interesting changes along with it. If not for other reasons, changing politics in India is surely a reason to welcome new year

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Soft Kitty - Is it real?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Dhoom 3: Should you go for it?

The most awaited movie of the year is here now.
Dhoom-3 released on  20th of December.
People had lots of expectations from this movie for many reasons.
Dhoom series is one of the first, to begin the trend of successful series. It is more famous because of the villain characters rather than the hero Abhishek Bachhan. While John Abraham set the foundations in the first movie, Hrithik Roshan made it large in the second movie of the series. Keeping in line with the newest and best presentation for villains, the third movie in the series included none other than Aamir Khan. It can't get better than this.
Aamir is known for his perfection to the finest details. He creates an expectation even if he is working in a 30 second commercial. So, it is justified that the movie hype would increase multiple times if he is playing a villain's role.
Another interesting character is Katrina Kaif. She would take care of glamour part of the movie. Even here, the series has tried to improvise. Going from Isha Deol in first movie directly to Aishwarya Rai in the second was a big jump. The series needed some one to fill in those shoes. I guess Katrina Kaif would do justice. Not every one would expect her to actually act in the movie, because there hardly will be anything to act for her. The movie is all about bikes, chases and speed. So, probably Katrina Kaif just have to look good and dance around. There might be some emotional touch to her character, but seriously nobody cares.

I wouldn't say anything about Abhishek Bachhan. I don't expect anything from him.Except for movie Yuva, he hasn't really impressed me as an actor.

The weakest link and the one that makes this movie series look bad is Udya Chopra. In spite the case that it is their home production, he should have been cut loose.

Early reviews from the viewers apparently are not that great. Many complaints came:
The movie is a copy of "so and so Hollywood movie".
The action sequence are repetitive. No newness.
It is just a run chase movie. No details of Bank robbery given. Something not expected from Aamir Khan.
Some commented that why Indian Police were called for bank robbery in Chicago. Are they worse than us?
One comment on the movie review on Times of India made me really laugh. I will copy paste a part of it here.
" I thought the target audience for this film are the people who were in deep cryogenic sleep for over a century and never seen a motion picture."

After all reading all this, I am thinking to wait a little  long before I may think of watching the movie. If you have watched it or surely planning  to watch, then do write here, your views about the movie. Lets see, our expectations were right or the reality is different.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Night time photography

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

AAP - changing the face of politics

One good thing has happened in Indian politics, origin and success of a new party called "Aam Aadmi Party", in short, "AAP", a word which otherwise in Hindi is used to say " You" with respect.
AAP has done a fantastic job of shaking the usual way of doing politics in India. I was really wondered when AAP received such a huge success in Delhi elections. I did expected it to do well, to outperform congress, but I did not expected, it will change the whole scenario in its first ever attempt. More over the way Arvind Kejriwal defeated 3 times chief minister Shiela Dixit, by an appreciable margin says a lot about the need of change people are looking for in politics.
What impressed me more  is the way AAP is trying to carry itself even after elections. The way they took a stern stand not to hurry in to get power and instead preferring to sit in opposition says a lot. It will surely prevail some sense of conduct among other political parties too.
I hope AAP does not change its route in course of time and actually rises up on idealistic way of doing politics. Though it seems difficult. Arvind Kejriwal may not deviate from his path, but can we say the same about all the followers when the party starts spreading its wings. Will the party keep working with its idealistic views or will it change over the time. Time has all the answers.
Till then, lets be happy that for a change something good has happened in Indian politics and wish it to grow as good as possible.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

New age sculptor, University of Pretoria, RSA

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sachhin.... Sachin

The "God of Cricket" as it is called in India for Sachin Tendulkar retired yesterday.
I barely got a chance to watch the match and so could not savor all the moments that are a part of history now.
But I did managed to witness him scoring his last 50. He was fabulous. The way he was playing must have made every body think, why is he actually retiring when there is so much of cricket left in him, The way he was handling spin as well as bouncers was awesome. I remember the way all the spectators were reacting on each one of his shot. If he missed a ball,which might go for LBW appeal, every body;s reaction was worth watching. I haven't seen such reaction towards any players except for some legendary Tennis players playing Wimbledon. Unfortunately I missed the match we he got out. I also missed yesterday's whole match which was his last day on the ground.
I checked all the videos later on. His last speech that tried to cover almost every body. The guard of honour given to him by Team India and his last walk to the pitch to say final good bye. It was all touching. People made it a grand procession all because of their love towards him.
And the ultimate news came that he will receive Bharat Ratna along with the renowned and most famous Indian Scientist C. N. R. Rao.
I think Sachin;s retirement has indeed created a big void. Actually the void had started opening long back with the retirement of Saurav Ganguly and Kumble that become bigger when Dravid and Laxman retired and now it has become deeper with the final episode of retirement of Sachin Tendulkar. His retirement has in real sense ended an era. People like us who grew up along with Tendulkar watching him  growing will actually feel this void more. Somewhere we will find it difficult and less interesting to watch Cricket with out any of our heroes in action. 
Today's new age players are doing a great work and they will definitely  keep Indian flag high, but they are the idols of new age kids who will grow up watching them playing. I wonder this new generation players will be consistent enough to keep a place in Indian team for long time as any of the famous five players did. Will they be able to make a fan base any where closer to what the retired players. The spectators who will shed tears on their success and failures. I have doubts about that.
Indian Cricket has changed. It has become more professional. It doesn't show signs of strong connectivity with players as it was seen with Kumble, Ganguly, Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar. Tendulkar's retirement brings an end to such kind of attachment to the Cricket and players. And that is the most hurting thing that happened yesterday.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Shop of Vin Chaud (Hot wine) in Old Lyon city streets, France

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

India's Mars mission - Mangalyaan

India's first ever attempt to reach another planet became reality today when Mangalyaan - Mars orbiter mission started its journey today afternoon at 2.38 pm. ISRO successfully lauched Mangalyaan today after noon from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota. This mission is special in itself.
Mars orbiter mission will probably reach near Mars around 24th September. If this happens, India's efforts  will only be the fourth such attempt ever after Russia, USA and European association.
The mission required an expenditure of  nearly $ 73 million dollars.
The main aim behind this mission to study the presence of methane in the atmosphere of Mars. There is a lot more to look forward towards this mission. It sets India as one of the leading countries in the field of space science.
If you want to learn more about this mission you may follow the link:

Monday, November 4, 2013

Happy Diwali 2013

Happy Diwali

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Chennai Express movie review

Long back I speculated about movie "Chennai Express", a new released movie back then.
You might be wondering why I am writing this review now. Its too late to write a review about a movie which has already been telecast on TV. Actually, I was thinking to watch this movie when it was released, but then, as always I missed watching it. I heard about the movie a lot. It went on to earn more than 200 crore money. Plus, it is funny movie with actually no great story. Recently, I heard it will be airing on some channel on October 20. I was looking forward to that day and just one day before, our TV gave up. Which again postponed  the plan  indefinitely. But somehow I got a copy of the movie and finally watched it on my Laptop.
Now, about the movie. I actually enjoyed it for most part of it. Except for initial introduction, love songs, final fight sequence between Shahrukh Khan and Thangabali, movie is enjoyable and mostly funny. All said and done, Shahrukh Khan knows the knack of entertaining audience. He has good sense of timing and quotient for humor. The new train catching version of DDLJ really makes one laugh to the heart. Communication through singing was another good part. Deepika Padukone also surprisingly performed well and the combination worked well to entertain the viewer. I am not sure if the movie is worth 200 crore rupees, but it surely compels one to watch it again.One more thing, I want to point out is the scenic beauty shown during the train journey. It reminded me of shots from Harry Potter's first movie. I hope it is all natural and not photoshopped.  
So, to all  people who still haven't watched this movie yet ( as I hadn't watched it till recently), do watch it. It is entertaining for most part of it.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Football Ground under water

One fine rainy day when Football Ground went under water in Mumbai

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Nobel Prize Winners: 2013

This years Nobel Prize winners for Physics, Chemistry and Medicine have been declared so far.
In Physics, as expected Nobel Prize had to go in the direction of most recent discovery of Higgs Boson or God Particle. Higgs and few other Scientists worked on the idea of existence of Higgs Boson which give mass to all other particles way back in 1960s. Francois Englert of Belgium and Peter Higgs of the United Kingdom shared this years Nobel Prize for Physics for introducing us to the concept of existence of Higgs Boson.

In the field of Chemistry, this year the award went to Computational Chemists. Many people are still not aware but Computational Chemistry is a branch in Chemistry that really helps to make understanding a concept easier by allowing you to look at it at molecular level. It allows you visualize molecules (something an experimental chemistry is unable to do) and understand mechanisms behind each and every reaction that occurs. This year Nobel Prize was awarded to three scientists Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel  who worked separately to develop different models that allows  one to study different molecular systems like proteins, DNA, enzymes etc. These models allowed combining the quantum mechanical models and newtonian law based classical models and generate a new one which allows big systems like proteins to be handled (classical mechanics) but at the same time giving better accuracy as giving by quantum mechanical models).

Nobel prize for Medicine this year went to Randy W. Schekman,  James E. Rothman of Yale University and Thomas C. Südhof of Stanford University.Their basic research solved the mystery of how cells, which are factories producing molecules, organize a system to transport the molecules within cells and export them outside. Read more about their work here

Friday, October 4, 2013

Qutub Minar, Delhi

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Read more about Qutub Minar here

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Far Over The Misty Mountains Cold

I am watching "The Hobbit: An unexpected journey" movie at the moment. I wanted to watch this movie but somehow missed it when it was released. Today, it is premiering  on TV and  I am not missing it this time. Well the story is just taking shape while I am watching it now. But what struck me strongly is this song. As soon as this song started, it made shivers go down my spine. Listen to this song. It is very effective. The voice is so deep, it mesmerizes you and you will surely loose yourself for next one and a half minutes. Just after the song finished in the movie, I kind of came out of trance and first thing that came to my mind was to share it with all.  I am embedding a video I could find on Youtube for every one to hear. The lyrics are given along with. Enjoy.

PS: If want the complete song that I guess is played as the end credits, follow this link:

Monday, September 16, 2013

Condensed Air Bubbles in Water

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Mars One mission - Will it be Real?

Did you read the news about Mars One project? If not here is a link for more information about it:
I am still wondering if such a thing has actually started coming into reality. By the time 2023 appears on calender, a  bunch of people will be flying to Mars, never to return. The project Mars One is intending to begin the human colony on a planet other than Earth. Now, that is a big step. Its pretty much like those initial human journeys through Sea and Oceans when he had no clue what is on the other side of the water body. There must be some speculations to begin with and based on few hunch, brave steps were taken that finally made humans aware of the overall topology of our planet. I believe Mars One is pretty much the same. We have some idea about Mars. We have a probe name "Curiosity" already exploring that planet and now we are directly trying to land our steps on that land.
I was more surprised to know the number of enthusiasts for this mission. As good as 2,00,000 people are attempting their luck for the missions. Among these 25% are just from America and second biggest number of enthusiasts come from India (10%). This is surprising. I do not know what these people must be thinking while filling up those forms of participation. First of all, the project is set to launch in 2023 means almost 10 years since today. Second, its a one way journey. How many of applicants have really given a sincere thought about it. Won't this thought change in coming 10 years?
I am little skeptical about the mission. Apparently this is no government organization mission. So, its credibility is surely under question. Also, the organizer do not have enough funding. They are planning to raise the money through some reality shows. That puts the whole idea in danger, at least for me. I am looking at it as just another idea for making money. Now, that all ideas for reality shows are getting prototype and repetitive with nothing novel in it, somebody has come up with this new theme. I have a feeling that, after making some money, the whole idea might be dropped showing some reasons of no feasibility to send humans on Mars.
I do not know about others (except those 2,00,00 enthusiasts) what are their views about this whole theme. I will wait for 2023 and see if the them actually come into reality. If it at all happens, life is surely getting new dimensions and will get new definition.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Palace of Versailles, Paris : Front view

Click on the picture for better view. Find out a funny thing.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Obelisk at Place de La Concorde from Cathedral Madeleine

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Learning French VIII: important, different

Words ending in "-ant" and "-ent"  in English all come from French. They carry the same meaning in the two languages. They have the same spelling and meaning with only difference in the way they are pronounced.

If you recollect, if a word ends with a consonant, that consonant is silent. Here, these words end in "-t" and this "-t"  is not pronounced. Instead the word pronunciation ends  at the sound of  "-n". The pronunciation of such words, both "-ent" and "-ant" are pronounced as "-aun". 
For ex: words like different or important. 

Lets try to use words in sentences:

It is + not + very + different + that way

Ce + n'est pas + tres + different + comme ça

Going little further on the same line

It is + not + very + different + that way, + but + it is + very + important.

Ce + n'est pas + tres + different + comme ca , + mais + c'est+ tres + important.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Enroute Mumbai-Pune Expressway

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Friday, August 23, 2013

Narendra Dabholkar: Leader against Superstition

Just a couple of days back, I received a news from a colleague that Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead while taking a morning walk early in the morning around 7.30 a.m. My first reaction was, inevitable has happened. People who are not aware of his work probably won't understand this reaction. But those who ever came across him or his work probably are not surprised.
Narendra Dabholkar is  a name taken with great respect among intellectuals and those who want to bring social reforms in the Country. He was in a reputed doctor for almost 12 years after which he got involved in different activities to cure the society from diseases like black magic and superstition. He was the founder member of Maharashtra Andha Shraddha Nirmulun Samiti. An organization that works to eradicate superstitious beliefs and black magic practices. He tried to bring anti-superstition law in Maharashtra. The anti-Jadu-Tona Bill drafted by his team members has been tabled 7 times till now in the state assembly but failed to come in discussion to be passed. He created so many enemies out of his activities that his life was always in threat. He experienced many physical assaults since his work started in 1983. In spite of that he refused to use Police protection. Some body took advantage of that and made a final assault on him three days back leaving him dead. After his death, now the Government apparently has come to senses. The bill has been passed at least by the cabinet. But it is not sure if it will see Sunlight too soon as it need to be passed by whole assembly. I hope the work he started and developed senses in many minds does not stop with his demise and  actually grow so that more and more people will understand the meaninglessness of black magic and superstition.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


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Monday, August 19, 2013

INS Sindhurakshak Tragedy

While every body around were feeling proud hoisting Indian Flag on their 67th Independence Day, some thing worst was happening around the corner. Indian Submarine INS Sindhurakshak experienced a series of explosions that end with sinking it under the water. Worst part is it carried 18 of its crew members including three officers and 15 sailors along with it. What happened on 14th August on that submarine is still unclear, but what is left behind is an unfortunate situation. 
Submarine INS Sindhurakshak was included in Indian fleet recently in 1997. It was a Russian-made Kilo-class Type 636, diesel-electric submarine. After serving for almost 14 years, it was returned to Russia in 2010 for up-gradation. Up-gradation mainly involved improved electronic warfare systems, an integrated weapon control system and a new cooling system. After upgradation, it was expected that the life time of this submarine would be enhanced by 10 more years.
It so happened that the submarine returned to Indian Navy Fleet just recently in May-June 2013 after a break of almost two and half years for up-gradation. On 14th of August, just before the celebration of day of Independence, some unknown series of explosions occurred in the submarine which resulted in its flooding ultimately sinking it to the bottom of the sea. Apparently three of the sailors were on the top, who managed to jump in the sea as soon as they realized the blow. All others who were inside could not make it out in time. Rescue operations to save those probably alive are facing difficulties as the submarine sank very close to the dock and is surrounded by muddy and murky water.
Up till now, six bodies have been recovered with no survivor as yet. In the mean time, war of words has already begun and this time it is international. Russia is suggesting mishandling of equipment while Indians as always were mere suspecting on sabotage which the Russian experts visiting the site already ruled out.
I am not sure what course it will take in coming days but I am hoping that reasons behind this accident are revealed and proper steps are taken to ensure no repetition of any such incident ever.
Read more here:

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Final Destination: Torna Fort, Pune

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

NEROLAC Excel - Umb-rella funny Commercial

I could not resist to share this new commercial which has started airing on TV for last few days. I am sure if the commercial succeeds to convince people in getting their houses painted by Nerolac Excel but it surely makes you watch the ad again and again.
What attracted my attention towards the commercial are the huge umbrella that starts appearing your TV screen along with some funny music in the back ground. Then slowly it is accompanied by a song in an odd voice that makes the ad more interesting to watch. I tried to understand the lyrics in the ad but they did not made much meaning to me. I tried to understand it and what ever I could made out of it you can read in this post below. But what stands out in the song is the way they pronounce "Umb-rella" and the accompanying chorus for the word "Umb-rella". Shahrukh's presence in the end watching among other people how some one is putting Umb-rella on their houses and then comparing it with an easy way of just using Nerolac Excel to save their houses manages to convey the message to the audience. I believe this is one commercial which is really innovative and thats why a must watch.
Here are as close it can get lyrics that I could understand. Suggest corrections if you find any:
Suraj ki matki oye barish ka tel
Balla ghumai ke oye nehle pe dehla
Ho laga do
Hai sha
Khinch ke
Aane do
Dhoop hai neem barish hai kadwa karela
Dhoop hai neem barish karela
Mithi churi sa kaatane chala, Umb-rellaaaaaaaa

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

An Alley in Bremen, Germany

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Saturday, August 10, 2013

Chennai Express : A movie worth watching?

Chennai Ex press: most recent released movie starring  Shahrukh Khan and Dipika Padukone.Few years back I watched Shahrukh Khan's movie "Main Hun Na". Now if you have watched that movie, you probably would agree that the movie actually had nothing new to offer. But it was a well made movie and that's why I actually enjoyed that movie. It was melodramatic. Story of two brothers who unite to over throw the wicked plans of anti national elements. What I liked at that moment was the pace of the movie and good actions plus some good songs. Shahrukh back then was the real badshah of Bollywood and what ever he tried would surely work.I am getting pretty much similar feeling about his recently released movie "Chennai Express". It is a Rohit Shetty movie. Obviously one would expect some actions like Singham movie which actually makes no sense but some where one enjoys those unimaginable shots. Then there surely are some funny songs that makes you to pick the beats and shake your legs.
I initially had some good expectations  from Dipika Padukone as an actress but then those hopes are not there any more. To add to that she is trying Tamil accent that would make it more unbearable. I am hoping  that Shahrukh Khan is doing some miracle to turn this movie in to a good one. Now it already has turned in to a hit by grabbing around 40 crores in just 2 days. It is bound to cross the so called 100 crore boundary with in next few days.
I saw some clips of the movie and what I liked what I saw. For example in a shot Shahrukh says to Dipika that "There is no word as impossible in his dictionary". Other wise such a dialogue would remind one of his Don's character. But what follows then turns it into a hilarious shot, as Dipika asks "Which bakwas dictionary do you use".
I hope the movie does not have only a few such hilarious scenes. This probably is a one time watch and forget kind of movie.
Some reviews I came across about the movie:

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Beauty of Diversity

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Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Amitabh Bachchan - Binani Cement commercial - Sadiyon Ke Liye

Did you watch this commercial for Binani Cement? I think this is one of best commercial in recent lot. What makes it special is the presence of Amitabh Bachchan in it. I wonder how he has gained such a power and command on his voice and the way of talking that just mesmerizes every body listening him. The way he speaks makes one be convinced with each one of his word. When one watches this ad, all one initially understand is the way he is remembering his parents and trying to find their presence in every small act of him or his son. He connects with the memories of his parents with different things in home they handled. Books they read and the poetry of his father, his mother's bangles.

What I liked the best is the library of books. I wonder if it was his real home and library. If it is so, I am surely envious of him and wonder when will I be able to have such a fantastic library.

No one gets a clue till the end that this ad is actually related to a cement ad which conveys the message that like memories, this cement lasts for eternity. I don't know may be because of this minute hint only this ad and the cement  is now stuck in my mind. May the same happen with you.

Monday, August 5, 2013


Saturday, August 3, 2013

Durga Shakti Nagpal : Igniting flame of awareness

This is a name making rounds around the country for last few days. Is it just a coincidence that a woman with a name as good as Durga Shakti is actually following actions suiting the name. I am just amazed how reality can be moulded to suit some one with stronger political connections. Yesterday I was watching a news where Mr. Bhati was addressing a public meeting and bragging how he managed to get Durga Shakti suspended with in a period of 41 minutes. Immediately after that in a telephonic interview, one of the politician from UP was trying to justify how Mr. Bhati was right in addressing the issue and bragging. One feeling that struck me strongly at that point was how foolish are we to keep supporting these kind of politicians in spite of knowing what is hidden under their skin. But then we also don't have any good option. We sincerely need an option where we can actually reject a politician.
I hope what Durga Shakti has started as flame would convert into a big fire and it will burn every thing that is happening wrong. All IAS officers better stand behind Durga Shakti. It also is our responsibility to take this message to every possible corner around India and present the real picture. At least then may be all dumb guys like us will stop electing people who try to make gains out of political power

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Rising Horse, Lyon, France

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Learning French VIII : Je suis désolé, mais

One sentence that every body too often use is "I am sorry". Obviously, one would often need to use it if he try to speak french. So today's lesson is "I am sorry".

I  am    +  sorry  = Je suis désolé
Je  suis + désolé

If you just want to say "sorry", you can use word "désolé". Now you must have notices a sign on the two "e" present in désolé. The signs just implies that alphabet e which is pronounced normally as a "अ " as in Hindi should be pronounced as  ae "ए".

Other important word to remember is "but". This is another word which is often required to connect to sentences. The french word for but is "mais"

So, if we combine these two new words with our earlier learnt lessons, we can create simple connecting sentences.

For example:
I am sorry + but  + it is  + not  + very  + good  

Je suis désolé + mais + ce + n'est pas + très + bon 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Panoramic Versaille Palace right side of Garden

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Monday, July 29, 2013

Pune - Mumbai Traffic Jam

If you are a regular traveler on Pune - Mumbai Route, you must have witnessed what is shown above. This is a picture of heavy traffic jam near Panvel where our bus, Shivneri took almost an hour to cross the bridge that otherwise avoids Panvel traffic. And this is not a case happening once in while. This has now become day to day experience on this route. Lot of road expansion work in going on here that has created a bottle neck for the vehicles going towards Mumbai. Worst part is the road provided for these vehicles to drive is actually not a road. Distance between two potholes on this road is less than 1 inch. In fact there are pot holes with in a pot hole. With Fantastic suspension of Mercedes Benz model of Shivneri bus, you pretty much get a feeling of  sitting in a boat. And if by chance your bus is passing through flooded water, it really make you feel like sitting in a boat. Yesterday while in bus, we felt like singing a marathi song "Vallahav re nakwa, ho" generally sung by fishermen in sea which crudely means "pedal your boats".
I don't think road construction work is an issue here. The issue is the poor (even that doesn't describe the condition of roads actually) condition of roads whichconverts an other wise 3 hours journey of Pune - Mumbai route in to 6 hours. That's a shame. Just one suggestion, do not even think about travelling in your own car on this route. You will repent for your decision after an exhausting 6 hours snail pace journey. Go for Shivneri or other MSRTC buses.

Friday, July 26, 2013

A hazy Full Moon

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Salman Khan: Charges framed

As the news arrive, Charges for culpable homicide have been framed on Salman Khan today. If you follow the news, it appears as if even framing charges is an uphill task when it is related to a celebrity.
Apparently, the Judge wasn't ready to take the case because he has been transferred. Prosecutor Erande must have done some hell of a task to convince him to accept the case today itself. Overall the outcome of today's proceeding is charges have been framed against Salman Khan and he has been directed to be present in front of the court when ever required.
I don't know if Salman Khan is guilty or not, so I am not going to make any comments about that here.What irritates me is the time required to get justice in India. Its an 11 years old case and all that we have reached till date is framing charges. Now that Mr. Khan is going out of the country for next 2 months, there won't be any developments.  With this pace, it surely will take around, may be five-ten more years, I don't know, to get a judgement. Then, there will be appeals, going to other courts and some other reasons we do not know.
I am just hoping, how pathetic the pace of judgement delivery is  in India, finally there is a judgement. We have seen it recently in case of Sanjay Dutt's case. Finally Justice is served after about 20 years. Salman's case has just finished 11 years. So, probably in coming 9-10 years, a judgement will be available. By that time, he would have turned something like 55, I guess. He might even have lost a big  fan base and the judgement passed would not mean a lot.  But I guess, that's the way it is. I will rather be surprised if what I wrote here turn out to be wrong.


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Fountain in the Rathaus (City Hall) courtyard in Hamburg, Germany

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Mumbai Monsoon

Its the month of July and we have completed over a month of monsoon. Now, monsoon is something which I guess is a  phenomenon found in this part of the world only. Who ever else I have talked  mostly don't have any clue about it. They are little surprised when they come to know that a country as big as India received rain for only 4 months in a year and it survives on water that is accumulated during this period. If you visit European countries, its pretty usual to receive rain almost every second or third week.

 Personally, I was looking forward for this season for many reasons. First of all I have missed Indian rain  over last five six years. I don't remember when was the last I was soaked in rain. I remember how I enjoyed driving my bike at as minimum possible speed just so that I will spend more time in rain.

This year, I expereinced the much awaited rainy season resding in Mumbai. Now this is my altogether first ever experience of Mumbai rain. Interesting thing is even the rain this year is pretty different from last couple of years. I haven't one full sunny day since it started pouring on June 03. Mumbai rain is really different. If you are caught in rain, there is no way you can survive without getting wet. What ever mode you use to protect you, an umbrella or a rain coat, nothing works. I was amazed to see the intensity of rain. With in minutes, all low lying areas are coverd in water and creates problems for commuters. All transportation system pretty much comes to halt when the rain is at its fullest.

One interesting thing to look for is the aggresive Arabian sea during the high tide. I am yet to visit one of such places in Mumbai, but if you are in Mumbai and it is raining and it is high tide, I guess visiting such a place like Varali Sea face could be fun. Of course one should be really careful because situation in Mumbai apparently turns from good to not just bad but worst in a few minutes. So, do enjoy monsoon rain and also be careful with health and sudden dangers around.

Photo courtesy:
I am using these photos just as an aid to my post. I do not own them. They were searched on google images and posted here hence. If it violates any copyright (which I could not find on related links pasted above, kindly contact me and I will get them removed.)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Tour Eiffel, Paris

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Friday, July 12, 2013

Bhag Milkha Bhag

I am pretty sure most of movie  buffs are waiting for today for the release of movie, "Bhag Milkha Bhag". There are many reasons for that. But I will talk about why I am waiting for this movie. The list of reasons could be a bit long.
To begin with, I am a fan of real life stories. I have searched wikipedia many a times for the list of movies based on real life incidents and then search them online or any where I can get it and watch it. Here is a list for you:


Then, I am a big fan of sports based movies. Following the same formula as mentioned earlier I found out most of the sports based movies and watched them. May then it be Miracle, Invincible, Remember the titans, We are Marshall, Gridiron Gang, The Blind side, Profantine and many others like that. I am watching Cinderella Man just now while writing this post.  Here is a list if you are interested

 Third thing is the central character of the movie. Milkha Singh is one name which every Indian knows very well. Although not many actually knows what good he performed to  make it such a big name. I am curious to know all the history. Given the fact that Milkha Singh has appreciated this movie and complemented Farhan Akhtar is a receipt that the movie goes very close to the history and not very away from real incidents.
I like Farhan Akhtar over all. He is a good actor, singer, director and what ever else he might be doing. After Aamir Khan, I find Farhan Akhtar as one person who really put his heart in the work and try to give justice to the role he is playing. Just look at his built for the movie. He has really taken great efforts to get in the role of Milkha Singh. I am sure he will give justice to the role.
In India, real life and that too sports based movie is a rare thing. I can only remember only 4 movies on sports in recent future. Iqbal, Lagaan, Chak de and now Bhag Milkha Bhag.  There was one movie called Ashwini based on Ashwini Nachhappa but I could never find it to watch. (Remind me if you remember any other). I guess Chak de was little inspired by a hockey coach but other wise most of these movies probably are product of imagination. But, this time we will watch a movie we can actually relate to.
 I hope this movie succeeds in reaching as many people  as possible and it rejuvenate the spirit of athletic games in the young generation. So, do watch the movie, get inspired and let me know your views about the movie.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Blind Valley: At the narrow gates of Fort Torna, Pune

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Learning French VII : Comme ci, comme ça

Have you heard of an expression "Comme ci, comme ça". It is a french expression that in English would roughly translate to expression "So So". Like in situation where you are not very sure if it is very good or very bad, some where in between of the two, you use this expression, "Comme ci, comme ça".

If we try to look at the literal meaning of the expression, it will split in two parts:
Comme ci = like this
Comme ça = like that

We will try to make use of the second part i.e. Comme ça in today's lesson.

Comme ça as mentioned  would mean "like that" or "that way"

Now combining this new word learnt with previous lessons, if we want to say,

It is like that = C'est comme ça

Here, C'est means it is as we learnt in  an earlier lesson and comme ça as now we know is "like that".

Now using negation in the sentence as we learnt in previous lesson

It is + not + like that (or that way),  would translate to

Ce + n'est pas + comme ça

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Deep Down Stairs, Lozere, Paris

Monday, July 8, 2013

Canada train blast tragedy : Run away train incident

Have you seen movie "Unstoppable"?
Its a Danzel Washington's must watch thriller movie. The movie is about a train that starts running with out an engine driver on full throttle.  To add to that, the train is carrying very deadly chemical that could blow and turn a whole city into ruins with in seconds. It is loosely based on some real life incident.I have watched this movie many a times. It might be little exaggerated in the movie the way they tried to avoid the train from derailing even over sharp turns. It is an otherwise interesting movie to watch. Back then I did tried to estimate the consequences just in case it derails and explodes in the heart of a city.  Unfortunately, I got my answer yesterday. I don't know if it was a coincidence or deliberate attempt to cash in by one of the TV channels, but they aired this movie yesterday. I came across this movie while surfing through channels just before I read the news of blast in Canada because of running away train carrying crude oil.
If you follow the news, the train was parked at a point uphill. Sources say, the engineer had just finished his duty. He did every thing as per the rule books before leaving the train. What happened next, no body knows. How the train got released is a question every body related to this incident will keep asking for a long time. Since it was parked uphill, as soon as it was released, it started rushing downhill towards the center of the city. Since it was moving downhills with no resistance of any kind, it went on gaining the pace as it was reaching the city center. High speed led to derailment and train cars caught fire, converting in to explosions.
Till last Friday, Lac-Magnetic was a city/town hardly known to any body. But one horrific incident brought the city on global map. To add to the grieve, it was a week end and all the bars in the center of the city were crowded till late night. Had it been other day, probably the casualty might have been little less. The explosions were so big that people for a moment imagined it to be from some Hollywood movie. Burning train cars were flying in the air. Buildings collapsing and explosions taking place as people tried to run for their lives. People came across things that movie "Unstoppable" did not showed.
It was a tragic incident and many people have lost their lives. It will be difficult to understand what led to this incident. If even after taking tall the necessary precaution, such incidents are happening, then how do bring control on it. The only way to avoid such situations is to think about more safer modes of transportation for such explosive chemicals and oils. But unfortunately it seems it needs an accident of this kind to open our eyes and take any decisive step.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Sacré-Cœur, Paris

Sacré-Cœur Basilica (The Basilica of the Sacred Heart), located at the highest point (Montmartre) in Paris 
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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Neb-Senu, rotating Egyptian statue's mystery: Will it be solved?

Remember the time when people in India went crazy knowing that Lord Ganesh is drinking milk offered in spoon by people. Back then, I saw lot of people gathered near the statue of Lord Ganesh in a small temple. I was little puzzled to see the crowd since it was not an auspicious day to visit Lord Ganesh's temple. But I was not curious enough to know the reason behind it. Next day, it was all over the paper and news, that Lord Ganesh is drinking milk. My first reaction was, What? really? Lot of discussion started happening. I remember even the Chief Minister of Maharashtra had tried his luck to offer milk and I guess he succeeded. AndhaShradhha Nirmulan Samiti made all the efforts to justify the science behind all that was happening. If I remember right, they came up with the answer of capillary action where you can see say a piece of paper absorbing water from the floor when came in contact. This pretty much justified the whole action. Some people were convinced, some tried mocking it depending upon their inclination towards Science.
I of course believed it. But I had a question lingering in mind, Why now? Temples, God's Statues are here for so many years. But then why suddenly one day people realized this? May be somebody tried make a news out of simple observation. 
Recently some thing similar thing started happening in a museum in Manchester that has left every body puzzled. According to reports a statue of Neb-Senu that is locked in a glass case in the museum has started rotating over the time on its own.
A little history about the statue. Neb-Senu statue was found in the tomb of a Mummy. Apparently, its purpose was to act as a vessel in case the mummy is destroyed and the soul requires an alternate arrangement. There is some curse associated with the statue and few people are fearing that the same curse has hit upon the museum and that's why this moving statue.It sounds little weird to believe but the authority has created a time-lapse video over a period of one week and they indeed found it rotating. Now many people are trying to justify it. According to some it is the movement of people's feet who visit museum that possibly resonates with the statue making it move. But the care taker responsible for statue asks question, why now?
The museum has this statue locked in the glass case for over 80 years, but its only now that it has started moving. He also questions why it is moving in exact circle? Why it just doesn't move in any direction. 
No body has yet provided any convincing answer yet and there also is no further news about any new development on the subject except that the Museum authority has requested people to come visit the statue and try to come up with some justification. Now I feel that could be one reason why the statue suddenly started moving. May be with coming summer, museum authority wishes to attract people's attention and pull some crowd. What say you?
Read more about it here:



Photo courtesy: http://www.neatorama.com/2013/06/24/The-Spinning-Egyptian-Statue-Mystery/

Friday, July 5, 2013


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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

End of the World in 2013

If you people are relieved that 2012 is over and World still exist, then you might be celebrating a little too early. If the recent reports and this time by Scientists, are to be believed, end of the World is due in the year of 2013. Now don't start packing your bags immediately searching for a way to stay alive. Though the year for the end of the World has been declared to be 2013, it is 2 billion years away.
As per the new theory that is coming up, with Sun getting older and growing hot, the temperature on earth will initiate a lot of chemical reactions resulting in depletion of Carbon-di-oxide.
This depletion of CO2 will affect the photosynthesis process in plants reducing their chances of existence. Whole of the food chain will thus be effected, where herbivorous animal rely on plants and carnivorous animals depend on herbivorous animals. This way whole of the living organisms will end up dead leaving on micro organisms behind who also will end over the time.
The theory is based on computer simulated predictions of Sun's effect on Earth over coming years. Now the theory on one hand sounds very logical and one can believe it. I just have few doubts before I can wholeheartedly believe it.
First of all, 2 billion years is a very big time. I wonder if life would really survive that long considering the way we are exploiting natural sources.
Second, if temperature on earth increases, it will first of affect water sources on earth, be it glaciers or river/sea/ocean system. Before any other kind of chemical reaction can take place, existence of water on earth will be the prime issue.
Third, if at all humans survive over such a long period, won't they already have made some arrangements to cope with the increasing temperature and  retaining life on Earth.
This upcoming new theory is again a prediction, just like the Mayan calender. Whether to believe it or not is one's choice. People believed in the theory of end of the world in 2012 but it proved wrong. If this theory is to be believed, we surely have a long time in hand to prepare for it. In the mean time, I believe some new theory will arise and we won't need to prepare for this theory.
You can read about it in more details on this link:

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Another Day of Summer in Cité Universitaire, Paris

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Monday, July 1, 2013

Sant Tukaram Palkhi and "Ringan"

I wrote earlier about Ashadhi Ekadashi. Today's post is kind of prequel to that.
As mentioned in there, two processions carrying the foot prints of two saints begin from two different villages Dehu and Alandi, the places connected to two saints Sant Dnyaneshwar and Sant Tukaram to reach PandharPur on Ashadhi Ekadashi. 
Now this is a very long route of around 150 kms to cover on feet. To add to that its rainy season when rain is pouring almost 24 hrs of the day. It is tiring and for some it might turn irritating. In such a situation, there are few ways by which people participating in the processions can be cheered and help to keep their moral high. One of these is called "Ringan". Now, I am not an expert to write on this, but what I have learnt from my elders about it and from writings I came across, this "Ringan" is a symbolic run of what Sant Tukaram did when he saw the temple of Lord Vitthala for the first time. He lost his senses and started running crazy towards the temple. This little game organized every year during the procession gives an opportunity to all those who wish to experience that feeling by participating in this run. Men, Women, Old, Young any body can run. There is also a way one participates in the run. Women participating are carrying either a Tulsi plant pot or a vessel full of water on their head, while Men are carrying a flag in their hand. Then there are people who run with their musical instruments in their hands and finally a horse. Interesting thing is it doesn't require any police security to keep the arrangements under control. Its surprising how such a huge mob is controlled. More about it you can read on this page:
If you wish to know the vastness of this procession, have a look at these photos I found on www.vitthalrukminimandir.org and www.thinkmaharashtra.com

And here is a video which pretty much covers a major part of Gol Ringan which took place at "Indapur". The run begins in this video somewhere around 2 min. 50 secs.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Insides of Hamburg City Hall

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Friday, June 28, 2013

Cadbury Silk Commercial

Do you remember this commercial by Cadbury Dairy Milk from way back in 90's.

This was one of the most watched and talked ad in those days. A girl doing awkward dance on the ground in front of all the people around was something that grabbed every body's attention. This ad made Cadbury Dairy milk a household name in India. Cadbury became a reference in the field of Chocolates. Many similar interesting ads then followed which continued to keep the Cadbury and its name on every body's lips.
Recently, I came across these ads which changed the whole picture about Cadbury at least for me. These ads were nothing but yuck. Of coarse, it gives the message exactly that Cadbury Silk is so smooth that its almost in molten state and spreads every where while you try to eat it. But it was too much for me to even watch it, forget liking the ad and so the Cadbury Silk. I would never have tried this chocolate.

But then recently this ad started airing on TV and it slightly changed my impression about Cadbury Silk. This is one wonderful ad where expressions do all the talking. Its just a conversation among two people by eyes and hands in adjacent cars who both are enjoying Cadbury Silk. They point to each other that a little of their Cadbury Silk is on their face. 
The ad has been so wonderfully done that it does leave you with a feeling to try it once. The music, song and expressions of the two actors have worked out very beautifully. If you have not watched this ad then you surely are missing something. With this I believe Cadbury has regained what it had lost with couple of bad ads. Do watch this ad and do enjoy Cadbury Silk