27 December 2004

kela mela

DBS Bank had announced that a sure win scratch card wud be given to all users when they log in to their internet banking the first time. Once a person logs in for the first time, he is given a notice to print out and take it to the DBS branch in Orchard road, 3 days after log in. The prizes range from free trips to cash prizes to think pads and mobiles, the lowest being the DBS Exclusive Premium. On looking at the list u can be assured that most of the users wud be given the DBS Exclusive Premium on scratching the card. Also u wud assume that the DBS Exclusive Premium, might be some vouchers or some special offers when banking with DBS. It is with this thought that I literally bullied my hubby to drive me to the Orchard road branch during my lunch hour today. There was heavy traffic and we took nearly 30 mins to reach the building. Leaving my hubby to find a parking lot, I went into the bank. There was a large queue in front of the customer service desk. I looked around to see if there were any displays suggesting where we can go redeem our gifts and there was no such displays. So I stood in the queue. Shortly I saw many of those in the q being redirected to another q inside the bank. That's when I noticed a lady having the printout and going towards the same Q. So I left the q I was standing in and went to the second Q...after considerable waiting it was my turn. After all the verification processes, I was asked to choose a scratch card and as expected, I got "DBS Exclusive Premium". They asked me to sign a form declaring that I had received my gift and gave me a notebook (not the IBM one, just a plain paper notebook). The cover said, just spend a minute...so I thot the Exclusive Premium details wud be inside and eagerly opened the notebook to see wat was inside. It was again just advertisements to use the internet banking. Now I was totally confused...where was the gift? So I went and asked the lady abt the gift and she told "The DBS Exclusive Premium is actually the notebook". Imagine my disbelief...here I was, wasting more than an hour to get a notebook not even worth 2 dollars!!! I had spent more to get to their branch and I had to skip lunch as I was already late!!!

Pretty disappointed with the DBS Bank...atleast they could have renamed the gift or given something else.

A silent prayer

I am not sure what was the urge in u to suddenly require thousands of souls near U...what set u to get thousands within minutes...thousands of innocent people without a clue as to what was to happen in the next few seconds...but God, please grant them eternal peace.

Also give mental and physical strength for those left suffering in this world...left without their near and dear ones...left with just the clothes on their back..give them the strength to forge ahead, to come to norms with their current situation. Give them the strength to accept what has happened.

God, please ensure that another quake or tsunami doesn't come around again. I'm sure they have had enough already.

God, please also safe guard the works of the good Samaritans from around the world from the corrupt minded officials. Let the help from various sources go directly to the affected people. Please sow a bit of compassion in the minds of the officials who would be responsible in distributing the aids. Let there be no hurdles for the NGOs, Red Cross and other organizations who come forward to help.

24 December 2004

Merry Christmas

It's Christmas eve and holiday mood everywhere. You find throngs of people in every shopping mall...its definitely a huge change from last year. Even the rains have shown a bit of mercy :) Last year it was pretty low-key due to Sars and economic downturn. To add to this, it was raining almost every afternoon. This year the sun is shining, huge crowds of tourists (8 million already!!!), Christmas lighting extended to the bay area (my office location...one of the reasons why this year looks more festive to me...everything is happening right at our doorstep:))

I'm certainly in a jubilant and holiday mood...

Wish u all a Merry X'Mas. Have a wonderful holiday.

21 December 2004


Yesterday was wonderful. When my hubby and myself returned home after office, the house was beautifully decorated with a happy birthday banner and balloons. My 4 year old nephew (Rishi) is having his school holidays and being hyper active needs to be given some sort of work or the other. So, his mother assigned him the job of setting up a birthday party for his cousin (my daughter). He had blown a lot of balloons and hung it in every possible place. He had also put up a "Happy Birthday" banner with the photo of Samyu below it. Later when we returned from the temple, he got out the cake with a candle and the party began. It was fun, with both Samyu and Rishi vying to cut the cake and in the process got cake everywhere except their mouth. :)) Think this one would be the special birthday party etched in all our minds since it was small and intimate and both the kids enjoyed themselves. Don't know how she wud be on 31st as it wud be a bigger crowd and almost everyone new. Sometimes impromptu arrangements are the best!!!

20 December 2004

Happy birthday

Today is my daughter's natchathira birthday. Planning to go to the temple in the evening. No other plans as of now. She looked gorgeous in a red pants and white tops this morning. She's a big girl now :)

little joys

I normally have my lunch in the bonsai garden next to my office...today as I was eating I heard a sweet music....I looked around for the source of music and couldn't find anything and the music had also stopped. Then again there was this sweet music and I noted that I heard the music whenever there was a slight wind. It was then, that I realized the source of music...it was not from any stereo or person. It was from the trinklets hung in the garden. They were made of hollow bamboo sticks and every time there was a wind, the bamboo sticks clashed against each other and formed the sounds like a drum and the hollow portion let out a sound like a flute... what a simple idea. Was amazed at the ingenuityy of our forefathers.

17 December 2004

Its Friday!!!

Never have I been so happy to see its friday. This week has been very hectic with too many last minute problems at work. To couple with this, my collegue is on vacation and I had to hold the fort for two!!! Good that the week is over :))

Need to spend more time with my daughter. She has become very playful and wants us to play with her. She has learnt to take a few steps and enjoys playing bo-peep. Also she has become quite efficient in mimicking the actions of others. The other day she was busy writting something like her cousin and she reads the newspaper like her Daddy. Her best past time is making calls to 'God knows who' and she acts soo beautifully like listening to them and answering their queries.

14 December 2004

This and that

Its been really hectic the past few days and I've been wanting to blog quite a few things...

First of all, my tribute to MS...a queen in the music world. I have admired her for years, not just for her music, but also for her charity works and of course her beauty... that beauty is not a superficial one. It comes from within..such serenity..this can come only to people who have come to peace with themselves. A unique figure. Her demise is a shock and a great loss.

Its Christmas time and the festive season is setting in...its so interesting to watch kids browse through the toys undecided on what to get for this Christmas...Orchard Road is beautifully decorated this time with themes from fairy tales. This time they have expanded the decorations upto Esplanade and around suntec city. So my office area literally glitters every evening :)

Saw the film 7/G RC. Not as good as the reviews. Its just another love story told in a different manner...and the ending was pathetic. It was like the director didn't know how to end the movie and wanted to have something different from the normal movies... The songs were very nice...

Read an article in the Streats about the infrastructure in India. The author had come down strongly on the government and how much we lack on our infrastructure. He has compared our infrastructure (or the lack of it) with that of China's and we don't seem to be any where near their level. He has also suggested we go in for municipal bonds as in US, to generate the money required for the upgrade. I personally feel that this would just become another means of making money for our politicians :(

08 December 2004


Last year we were in a dilema when we had to decide whether to have the baby in Singapore or in India. Althou there were many pros and cons in each place, the main thing that made us select Singapore was that doctors prefer normal delivery over caesarean here. This is the understanding I had after speaking to quite a few friends who had delivered in Singapore. So I was shocked to learn that three in ten babies are born thro caesarean in Singapore!!! hmmm...times are changing... BTW, my doc was for normal delivery ;-)

01 December 2004

Excellent service

Yesterday I was returning home with my husband in a cab. The Cabbie was a Chinese man. The moment we got into the cab and gave the details, he switched the radio to the tamil channel...was really amazed by his service. I usually take a cab to office and there has never been another cabbie who has done this. This is the type of service anyone wud appreciate :)

29 November 2004


This is the second Kumbabhishegam I'm attending, the first one was at my sister's village temple...It was a wonderful experience. Just like in a story or film...the village, temple, instant shops, crowds , santhai (fair), etc. A memorable one.

The current one was in Singapore...It was the kumbabhishegam of the Murugan temple at Jurong East. It was pretty crowded. We thought there was a queue and got down at the end of the queue so that we can join it, while my bro-in-law went to park the car...he couldn't find a place to park, since there were road blocks everywhere (and u thought this was an Indian trait? )

It had rained the previous night and hence the grass near the pavement was muddy and slushy...There was no place on the pavement as people were standing there to watch the kumbabhishegam...We had to walk in the slush to get near the temple and we had removed our shoes in the car itself :( There was no queue and the crowd was not moving and to top it all the sun was shining to glory...

The kumbabhishegam was finally done and the Pooja and Mudhal mariyathai started...Then they announced that the temple would be opened shortly for dharshan....and no one knew where was a queue or entrance, since the normal entrance was blocked. Suddenly there was a mad rush in the crowd and all started moving to a side road near the temple. This road had been divided horizontally using barricades and each block had a group of people waiting. Each block was opened randomly and the people there allowed into the temple. So whenever a block was opened, there was a mad rush to that block!!! Think each block was representing one of the temples in Singapore and they were calling each temple one by one...but the best thing was that no one knew which block belonged to which temple and people were just rushing from one block to the other!!! Since we had the kids with us, we thought it was best to wait in one block until it was opened...It was more than an hour and the block was not opened. Then a small fight started between the volunteers monitoring the barricade and those inside the block...since it was looking like the barricades would not be opened anytime soon and the kids could take it no more, we decided to return and come back to the temple in the evening.

Good thing that we returned...since within 1/2 hr it started pouring. (That's Singapore for u....there's thunder showers and sun alternating with no warning!!!). Evening we returned to the temple and this time the crowd was limited to the temple premises. Again there was no queue and the crowd was not moving as there was some pooja going on inside. We waited outside the temple for about 1/2 hr and then inside the temple for 1/2hr and finally managed to get dharshan!!!

Here, I have to mention about the temple managements arrangement for annadhanam and distribution of theertham from the kumbabhishegam....there was an organized queue for the annadhanam (atlast some orderliness!!!) and the management had poured the theertham into small bottles and there was a group distributing this to each family...this was particularly good, since we were really disappointed that we couldn't enter the temple in the morning to receive the theertham.

Now, doesn't the whole episode sound like something happening in India? :))

25 November 2004

There was a farewell dinner couple of days back for one of our collegues who would be leaving for Japan shortly. He had opted for a transfer to Japan...the main catch here is that he had just acquired Singapore citizenship and had bought a house here. Now he wud be relocating with his family to Tokyo.

During the dinner, we had an interesting discussions on the pros and cons of moving to Tokyo...the main point being that Tokyo was expensive than Singapore. Then it continued to the culture and workplace.

24 November 2004


I had to attend a training program this morning from 8.45 to 12.30. Since I was in early shift, I quickly finished some of the daily jobs so that my team mate would not be overloaded and was all set to go at 8:30. Then came the production bomb-shell and we were all at it until 9.30 when it was solved finally. So now, here I was, late by 45 mins and wondering whether to attend or not... Finally thought I'll just give a try and went to the training room. The training was in full swing and I just peeped in to see what was going on and if I could just slip in. To my shock I noted that there was no one in, whom I knew and the training also seemed to differ from what I was expecting....

I was standing near the door clueless, wondering if I had come to the wrong training room, when a guy came by. I asked him what was going in and came to know that it was a different program and has been going on for the past couple of days...so off I went in search of the person responsible for the training and demanded her what was happening...before she could reply I had told her I was late as I had a production support to do and blah blah (to show off that I had other better things to do and not get chided for being late!!)....the person listened to all that I had to tell and coolly replied "Your training program is on next friday and I think you have not read your mail properly!!!" and to make matters worse she showed me a copy of the mail I had sent her asking her to add my name in the training!!! It clearly stated in highlighted text that the training was on 3rd Dec 2004. Oh dear!!! Felt so embarrassed...me and my big mouth!!! ....Mogatha enga vaikurathunu theriyala!!!

23 November 2004


Saw the film "Gajendra"...dont know how many more tamil films are going to be produced based on "Baasha".

The film is not worth spending 2+ hrs of your time. The most idiotic scene in the movie was the scenes supposed to be taken in Hyderabad...there's not a soul who speaks telugu....right from the little boy who polishes the shoe, to the priest at the temple...everone speaks Tamil. "Kaathula poo koodaiyae thooki vachitaanga!!!"

22 November 2004


Have u ever wondered why India is not a hotspot for tourism inspite of having all the attractions boasted by the other favorites and more? I have always wondered about this whenever I visit a new place or country. What have we done...A lot has been discussed and digested burning down to the poor governance in our country and the infrastructure. But its really heart warming to see that India is gaining its rightful place in the tourism industry, especially due to the "Incredible India" advertisements globally. But we still have a long way to go in achieving our target... Tourism could easily become the highest foreign exchange earner for India.

I think we should focus on the following for us to achieve this:
1. Better Infrastructure
2. Good hotels
3. Promoting India globally as a tourist destination
4. Opening the skies (get more airlines and hence more tourists)

These are just a few for starters...We can improve on the others as we go on....

19 November 2004


How would it be to live some 80 plus years? How would it be to have half a dozen kids and a dozen grandchilren and great-grand children? How would it be to know that your days are numbered and still not get to see all your loved ones? I know not any of these and I dont think I would get an opportunity...as my grandfather is no more....but I do know that its hell being in a far off land when ur grandfather dies :(

I do miss him....

17 November 2004

kuzhal inithu yaal inithu

Got reminded about a Thirukkural (Tamil couplets) this morning "Kuzhal inithu yaal inthu enbar tham makkal kural kaelaathavar" meaning "The flute is sweet, the harp is sweet," say those who have not heard the prattle of their own children. The past four days my daughter is saying "Amma" when she sees me :) (althou not everytime) She does babble quite a lot and its only recently that she is saying "Amma" as a single word...

16 November 2004

A break spoils the mood ;)

Had quite a few holidays last week and am really struggling to get back to the working mode :( ah...was I working earlier? ;)

Have hell lot of things to do, but not in the mood to do it... Home looks more inviting ;)

Yesterday saw a program on Vasantham Central (more like our Doordarshan). The programme was "Vasantha maligai" and it was about identifying a real "vasantha maligai". I was astonished to see the way the houses were decorated....more like something out of the books....a very interesting programme

15 November 2004

Hari Raya

Today is Hari Raya (Ramzan as we know it ;)) and I'm in office... :( thats wat u pay for being in the support line... but not too bad as I wud get a day off on some other day :)

Economy is certainly gaining momentum in Singapore. The property market is picking up...have been looking for a house to rent and v have had no luck so far. Yesterday we saw a penthouse and it was really good...but the rent was way too high and the house is 7 years old (here the rent depends largely on how new the house is and its proximity to the MRT station (railway station)). Dont think they wud get a tenant for such a high price...so we are holding off for now, hoping they wud contact us again ;) In the meantime our hunt continues...

Saturday had been to the beach at ECP. Thot we wud be seeing very few people as it had been raining when we started, but Singaporeans are persistant :0 The paid parking lot near McDonald's was almost full when we reached ECP. We had a nice get-together with a couple of other families to celebrate diwali...the kids had a nice time with firecrackers.

12 November 2004


This Diwali was quite different...one thing was that I prepared the sweets and savouries (God save those who are unfortunate enof to taste it...;))

Prepared Athirasam, Pumpkin Halwa, 7 cups sweet, mixture and paruppu villai. All were reasonably good...even tasted as good as my mom's :)

Diwali was similar to that in India, except for the noise of fire crackers....went to the temple, had good food, exchanged sweets with friends, had friends come home for lunch and finally able to keep a few sparklers (the only ones allowed in Singapore)... The only thing missing here was going to relatives houses and distributing sweets....

09 November 2004

Diwali wishes

My day has been relatively ok...so not bad :)

Wishing u all a VERY HAPPY DIWALI...will blog again after diwali.

Good start for the day

Had two mails with good news this morning...so the day has started well and hope it maintains thro the day :)

Some things when happens to your friend, makes you more happy than if it was to happen to you. So am very happy for my friend and wish her & her family the very best. Nice things do happen to nice people :)

Things are happening around the world!! US $ is going down marked by a forecast of large American trade deficits...means better exchange rates for Sing $ against the Indian rupees. Arafat's health looks down the hill...think another power struggle is on the way. MM Lee backs retiring late...good... it is really astonishing to see that people here are rejected becos of age at job interviews, thought you wud be a more sort after person as u grow old due to the experience u have, but here it is different. They prefer younger people!!!

08 November 2004

Diwali in Singapore

This is the second time I'm in Singapore for Diwali...the first time was my thalai diwali and this one is the first diwali for my daughter!!!

Its so different to celebrate diwali in foreign country and yet have all the settings as in India, which includes holidays, sweets, fireworks (althou this is very limited!!!), decorations, fair, etc.

There are quite a few things that are even better than in India, for example the decorations in Little India....whole streets are decorated with cut-outs and lights for a whole month and this is sponsored by the Government (dont think u can find something like this back home) and all taxis, buses and common display screens have Diwali wishes. Its like the whole country is celebrating.

Another interesting feature is the Diwali santhai (fair)....you have huge ground that is converted into a santhai with loads and loads of Indian things like chudidhars, sweets, fireworks, bags, accessories, cds, flowers and most importantly the mehendi artists....and this is much cheaper than in most cities inIndia...its jst S$5 per hand!!! So to have both ur hands decorated with mehendi on both sides, it wud cost only S$20 which wud come around Rs.500!!

Second Attempt

This is the second blog I'm creating as I've forgotten the pwd for the first one ;-) Its almost a year since I created the first one..and I've never updated it after that!!! So hope I get to update this more often.

Looking foward to more blogging.. :)