27 November 2006


The little one bangs her hand against the door and cries out in pain.

"What happened? Oh...you got hurt? are you ok? Let me take a look..this naughty door, hitting you like that. Now, don't cry, I'll hit the door"

"Hmm...mummy, but what did the door do? It had to be there right? It didn't hit me purposely!!"


20 September 2006



10 நாட்களுக்காக புதிதாக தற்காலிக Road போடலாம்.
100 Police Security போடலாம்.
500 புது BMW வாங்கலாம்.
1000 கணக்கில் பூக்களை குவிக்கலாம்.
$2000 - க்கு பரிசு பொருட்கள் கொடுக்கலாம்.

இதையெல்லாம் ஒரு IMF meetingக்காக செய்யலாம்

This is for people like ME, who cannot read Tamil.
If you have money...

You can lay a new road temporarily for 10 days
Have around 100 Policemen as security
Get 500 new BMW cars
Get around 1000 Flowers
Can give gifts worth $2000

All this for a IMF meeting!!!

18 September 2006

IMF singapore - general observation

Three meter high barbed wire fence, police men at every nook and corner, a dozen fire engines, riot police...does this sound like a scene from the high security camps? Well this is how it is around the Suntec area in Singapore. The IMF meeting is taking place at the Suntec Convention Centre. All roads leading to the convention centre, including the overhead bridge are blocked to public. A whole battalion of police is located behind the convention centre, ready for any challenge. There are a lot of fire engines, police vehicles and ambulances stationed there.

The hotels where the delegates stay have security checks including baggage screening similar to the ones we see at the airport.

But, the road blocks have not caused traffic jams as expected. We are still able to reach office with minimum discomfort.

All shops and restaurants in the Suntec vincity have special offers or discounts for the IMF delegates. But I have not seen many delegates shopping :)) Have to check with the shoppers...

The pedestrian way along Nicoll Highway had beautiful flowers. There were bees bussing in the morning. Gives a refreshing feeling when you walk to office. But I feel a bit sad to see the plants. These flowers are all temporary arrangements and so they are still in pots. The pots are buried under sand, to give an appearance of being planted directly. Each potted plant is tied together, so that the flowers are bunched at the top. But this looks so artificial, although it gives a neat look. I would prefer the unruly bushes with flowers :))

11 September 2006

Colorful Singapore

A new comer to Singapore would be stuck by the greenery around him. Everywhere you go, you would find green trees and shrubs. Even in the highly populated City area, you would find fresh green plants smiling at you.

With so many plants you might think that there would be a few flowers around. Especially, since Singapore is touted as the Garden City. But, except for a few pathetic Bouganvilla plants along a few flyovers, there were almost no flowering plants. Visitors from abroad used to ask us about this and I never had a proper reply to this.

Now the image has changed suddenly. With the IMF meetings in Suntec, the area around suntec are surrounded by beautiful flowers. Daisies, marigolds and Canna adorn the city. A colorful smile to welcome the delegates.

PS: But somehow I feel that the flowers have removed the elegant and orderly look of Singapore ;)

06 July 2006


There was a big recruitment spree going on in our company and specifically in our project. Most of the openings were for a few months contract job and so the project manager and higher officials were not interested in conducting the interviews. There was also the time constraint as there were nearly hundred people required for the project on short term basis. The candidates were shortlisted by the HR and the project manager would just pass the resumes to the Team Leads to conduct the interview. All of my friends had had a go at interviewing and so I was eagerly waiting for my chance. It never came and the recruitment was also completed. After almost a week, I got a call from my Project Manager and was asked to Interview a guy.

I just had time to skim through his profile before going to the meeting room where the guy was waiting for me!!! We greeted each other and I started off with the usual question of "Tell me about yourself". -- I needed this, as I didn't know much about him. That was when I got the shock. It was like a school boy reciting his homework. It went like, "My name is XXX. I have done my YYY at xxx college. I have X years of experience..blah blah. blah". This guy had some experience in the telecom sector and nothing much on what we required. I had made up my mind that this guy would not be suitable for us and that's what I told my PM too.

Then came the second shock. This guy was a relative of our CEO and had been offered a job in the company already. As they didn't have a suitable job for him, they wanted us to take him into our project. The third shock came when the PM asked me to take this guy into my team! Everything had been already decided and this was just an eye wash interview. I felt like a waste cloth!!!

But out of all this, I had got a GEM of a team member. He was a hardworker with a will to learn. He was also one of those guys who would never say die. In fact I was pretty unwilling to let him go when my company got a telecom project.

30 June 2006

Beauty of Numbers

Got this as a fwd...

1 x 8 + 1 = 9
12 x 8 + 2 = 98
123 x 8 + 3 = 987
1234 x 8 + 4 = 9876
12345 x 8 + 5 = 98765
123456 x 8 + 6 = 987654
1234567 x 8 + 7 = 9876543
12345678 x 8 + 8 = 98765432
123456789 x 8 + 9 = 987654321

1 x 9 + 2 = 11
12 x 9 + 3 = 111
123 x 9 + 4 = 1111
1234 x 9 + 5 = 11111
12345 x 9 + 6 = 111111
123456 x 9 + 7 = 1111111
1234567 x 9 + 8 = 11111111
12345678 x 9 + 9 = 111111111
123456789 x 9 +10= 1111111111

9 x 9 + 7 = 88
98 x 9 + 6 = 888
987 x 9 + 5 = 8888
9876 x 9 + 4 = 88888
98765 x 9 + 3 = 888888
987654 x 9 + 2 = 8888888
9876543 x 9 + 1 = 88888888
98765432 x 9 + 0 = 888888888

Brilliant, isn't it?

And finally, take a look at this symmetry:

1 x 1 = 1
11 x 11 = 121
111 x 111 = 12321
1111 x 1111 = 1234321
11111 x 11111 = 123454321
111111 x 111111 = 12345654321
1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321
11111111 x 11111111 = 123456787654321
111111111 x 111111111=12345678987654321

22 June 2006

Home Again

When you plan for your trip back to India, what would you expect? Seeing your parents and relatives? Meeting friends? Eating home made food?

From experience, it's all of that and most importantly very busy weeks...you almost have no time, trying to squeeze in as many obligations as possible...Especially the courtesy visits. Then, there are those temple visits and the functions they plan to have when we are there.

A friend of mine, had been to India recently for three weeks and during the days she was at home, she normally woke up at 5am and went visiting people. Now, doesn't this sound like a Minister's schedule?

10 June 2006


In almost all the houses that I had visited in Switzerland they had candles lighted in their house. Right from the huge pillar like candles lighted at a corner of the room or small candles on the dining tables, there were sure to be candles. I was fine with all these and felt a bit enchanted tooo...until I saw a candle in the shape of a small dog. I instantly remembered the Balachander Film (don't remember the name...saw it when I was a kid) where the heroine would be enraged to see a candle in the shape of a kid burning away. I was very disturbed when I saw it as a kid and I had the same feeling when I saw the dog candle too. I normally never buy beautiful candles as I can't see it melt away...and one of the gifts I got in Swiss was a beautiful Rose candle.

06 June 2006

Alps malai kaatru vanthu ennai thotathu.......

Had been to Swizterland the past three weeks....

Wow, what a place...a picture book.

It's supposed to be summer but the maximum temperature is only 21 C. And that was not always. It went to - degrees most of the time. There was even snow fall in a few places!! It was a wonderful experience...the first time I saw snow fall. The sun made sure that we never forget that it was summer, it sets only at 9.30pm!

The Swiss card appears to be a bit pricy, but is sure worth getting one if you intend to travel a lot. It provides for unlimited travel in all the public modes of travel. There's also free entry to some of the museums. The trains are wonderful in Switzerland. The routes that they cover are awesome and some of them were built as early as 1903. On the Glacier Express we got to see lush green meadows with quaint little houses. The sound of bells from the cows was like ARR music to a Mani Rathnam Film!!! But I did feel sorry for some of the cows, the bells around their neck were as big as a temple bell!

Bern was not part of our plan. But I'm happy that we went there. And a pleasant surprise was a clock tower there. I had seen it on Discovery Travel network a few years back, but had forgotten where it was. We reached the place exactly at the moment when the clockwork was going to strike the magic!! We got to see it... a dream come true for me!!!

31 January 2006

Essential learnings for life

Did you know:

Killing a person in Chennai is as simple as shooting him point blank on the head in a park with lots of kids playing around and no one actually noticing it.

Killing is also such a normal act that the killer can easily revert back to normal life, without a trace of remorse.

In the midst of all this, eating an ice cream when it rains is so peculiar, that anyone who does it should belong to one particular family (should really appreciate the director for coming up with such wonderful ideas…you can add this to the “Kudumba pattu” reunion types)

And the best is:
You can put out a fire on your back by flapping your hands.

I learnt all these when I watched Aathi (a new Tamil Film starring Vijay and Trisha).

27 January 2006

மழலை - இனிய தமிழ்

அம்மா வந்தியா





19 January 2006


One of my friends has got Singapore Citizenship for her whole family. She was contemplating whether to go for the whole family or not as her second son has a US citizenship as he was born there. But since the kids can have dual citizenship and decide when they are 17 as to which citizenship they would like to retain, she went for the whole family.

Ever since she told that they have got the Singapore Citizenship, I have been wondering about the mindset of such people. Would they truly feel Singaporean and would they tell everyone that they are Singaporeans and not Indians? Would they really look with pride when there is some achievement by a Singaporean? Who would they support if there was a competition between a Singaporean and an Indian? I feel they would remain Indians at heart and use the Singapore Passport for convenience sake.

16 January 2006

New Year and Pongal Wishes

Back after another break...

Although a bit late, here's wishing you all a very happy new year and a happy pongal.

Had been to India the past few weeks. Had gone there just after the rains had done their ravage and the whole country side was fresh and green with all the waterfronts full. All the small lakes (yerri) were full and I had the joy of seeing a "Full Cauvery" after many years. Although the Sun TV had claimed huge damages everywhere, it was not as reported. Some roads were battered very badly and some of them were in really good shape. This was a surprise, as I had expected most of the roads to have been washed away, considering the floods. Only the low lying plains and sites close to the river were affected.

An example of what privatization could do to the country was seen from the Reliance Petrol Pumps...something to be proud of. It was up to international standards with beautiful gardens, large area, clean toilets and good drinking water!!! Some portions of the National Highway (NH45) between Trichy and Chennai were also very good. Three way lanes with clear markings and no potholes!!! There were also areas with small buildings, which were marked for Trucks. This is for the lorries and trucks, when they want to take a break. A nice concept to ensure lorries and trucks don't occupy the highway and disrupt the traffic. Most of these roads reminded me of Malaysia and unsurprisingly, came to know that the road contracts were given to some Malaysian company!!!

A cool breeze was always blowing in Trichy and there were drizzles almost every evening. The buildings in Thathachariyar gardens were affected by the rains, with floods covering almost the whole of the ground floor. In a way I felt that they warranted what they got. Disrupt nature and nature would disrupt your life. I heard that many of them have now vacated their houses in ground floor and gone to other places.

My husband's place is a small village next to Trichy and I love going there. Especially the visits to the fields are a treat. This year the visit was extra special, since my daughter is big enough to enjoy the fields and cows. We need to wade through a small river (oodai) to reach the fields. Normally the river is dry and we go directly to the fields by car or bike. This time, we had to stop the car a good distance away and wade through the knee high water. The water was crystal clear and cool. The nearby fields were a treat to the eye with sunflowers in full bloom and lush green paddy. The oadi karai (river bank) had tamarind trees and we plucked raw tamarind to eat while we made our way to the fields. My daughter was excited with each and everything that she saw and the pump set (a small tank where the water is pumped out from the well) was her heaven. With a doting grandfather ready to satisfy all her wishes and whims she had a whale of a time. The way she played in the water and the amount of illaneer (tender coconut ) that she drank had me worried about her health.

All these bought back memories of my childhood at my granny’s place. The raw tamarind that we used to pluck from the neighbor’s fields and the way we used to play in the water in the pump-set. Oh…for those good old days!!!