The world of no good

wanna have a fun life, travel, and see different cultures.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Travelogue II

Have tonnes to report, but fear won't rememeber to post more than a few lines - damn my memory!!

well, lemme start at least.

the last I posted, think it was from Jakarta (it was in a hurry i remember). long story short - jakarta was cool. nothing fascinating happened there except that i bought a digicam - thought was going to the villages needed somethign to take pics with - my sketches being of the high quality they are and all.

now, Jambi. that is where i am right now baby. before we go any further. i remember reading a lot of 'expedition' stories about how those great adventurers went around to the jungles in search for societies untouched by modernisation. lemme me tell u one thing about all those stories. i clearly remember thinking about this after a day's stay in Jambi (3 days back). I wondered why none of those fantastic stories talked about shitting and cleaning up in those 'amazing places' (note, i had the world's biggest urge to shit at that time, hence the train of thought). anyhow, i can tell u now why they never mention work in the toilet in all those amazing stories - cos it just ain't pretty to talk about!! expecially rural style -desperately looking for water - squatting and lunging here and there!

always told people that i learnt nothing during my undergrad - just made good friends and 'lounged'. man, how much more wrong could i be!!! VIT taught me life skills! those first few arduous hours in the toilet taught me the delicate art of squat-balancing, those cold nights in the summers taught me how to have cold-water baths and still come out happy. those hours of washing dirty clothes have taught me how to keep my undies from turning into door mats, and how can u forget the insect-filled sambar and rasam - the 'different strata of the septic tank' theory that we so fearlessly accepted as a part of our lives. yes, dudes!! i learnt something in VIT, and now i know what!!

went to a couple of villages yesterday and today. trust me when i say i was a hit:). haha. will post lotsa pics (and maybe videos on my website) when i get back. cool houses and stuff (on stilts...). i dunno if i should thank that i am as tall as i am or not. cos many saw me and were stunned and then started laughing wheneer i did anything. i laughed back; that made them laugh more:). had fun. if i go back there 10 years later there will be legends about how a gentle indian giant once came by and talked with all of them in broken indonesian lol.

went across a river by boat to a village today (village = tanjung-raden). was fun. then travelled by a 'motorcycle-taxi' (called ojek here)from the river-port to the village. kinda cool.

overall, has been fun. just realised i am gonna spend new years eve all alone in a country i dunno. felt bad for a few minutes, then thought, what the heck, it's an experience.

planning to go to bali sometime. lemme see. not sure yet. don't think it will work out. but, more impossible things have happened before, so i am hopeful.

had a taste of cinnamon-filled tobacco made here in Jambi. weird. sweet tobacco, that is a first. but, was fun.

too all of u, Happy New Year. may the new year renew the vigour in you to be something more than just a squatter in a poophouse.

till later...

Monday, December 26, 2005

note to the blind and stupid

ok, look back at the pictures below and read the 'words' Mayank typed!! please don't ogle at his pic, that wasn't the point!! (why would i use two pics then!!)

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Sometimes, I worry about Mayank!



Wednesday, December 21, 2005

News, events, and stuff like that

In Jakarta right now. Nice place, this. a crazy mix of Chennai and NYC. lol. the business district has the fanciest buildings ever, but the roads still remind me of chennai. really crazy place. has to be seen to be believed. oh yeah, they have a LOT of freaking traffic. Not a joke. getting around is a problem at all times of the day. the 'off-peak' hours are like the peak hours in Chennai. freaking mad-house.

Will go to the villages soon. more specifically, a place called Dusun Dalam - need to go upriver (Batanghari) in Sumatra, 20 hour river ride in a boat (If i choose to do it that way) or a 4-5 hour car drive. Think will return downstream in a boat. lessee. hehe. heard the river is as noisy as hell. don't want to hurt my ears while going to the place - after all i need to HEAR what i am 'collecting'.

might go to a (open-)museum of sorts on saturday. this place has houses form different parts of indonesia - some kind of reserve or something. lessee. might take some pics and post.

nothing else about indonesia. now, about things happening in India, Anirban got a job with IBM for 50ka month. Way to go fatty (i don't mean u ashwin). do send him ur congratulations, all of u.

till later....

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Travelogue 1

Hey Changi Airport (Singapore). long transit break (8 hours!!), free internet, and no Y!/MSN-messenger...enough motivation to blog!!

snippets from the last few days:

ACT 1...Indonesian Consulate in NYC, T - 2 days
Karthik: I need the visa tomorrow sir. Leaving day after (saturday). please, can i get it.
Visa officer: No. two days minimum for a visa.
10 mins later, friend calls visa officer form Delaware.

Friend: Calling from Univ of Delaware. we need Karthik to go to Indonesia on Saturday. Make sure you give it to him, or else we will have to tal to Washington (Emabassy).

Visa Officer misunderstands friend...thinks she is from the embassy at Washington (!!!)

Visa officer: Mr. Karthik, someone called for you from Washington and said u applied for the visa last week, and u have ur application in ur hands!!
Me: I don't know who it was sir.
Visa officer (peeing in his pants): OK, Ok. come back at 3 and collect your visa (!!)

I go back to the consulate at 2 (nothing better to do)

Visa Officer (calls me and says) : here is ur visa (!!!)
Karthik super happy...all the visa guys scared of mega-well-connected Karthik.

ACT 2...Minneapolis to Tokyo
Got down from the Phily-Minneapolis flight...ran to the Minneapolis-Tokyo counter... just made it. doors shut...Take off!!

On the flight.
The guy sitting next to me was reading a book on 'Suicide, depression...'. And was underlining every second line in that book. 2 hours later. he was taking notes/writing an essay....looked like a psycho!! Karthik squirms.

ACT 3...Tokyo to Simhapura
met a PhD in Industrial Management or something..ethnic indian from Malaysia. told me about the huge anti-indian bias in Malaysia..about how they don't get jobs, seat in short, another case of minority bullied by majority.

just before 'de-planing' (disembarking)

Announcement on the flight PA system: Someone stole a small red back-pack. will the person who stole it please meet one of the stewards/stewardesses.

Everyone on the flight starts laughing

Info: Found out later that, one of the stewards 'took' it thinking it was his!!!!

ACT 4 - In Changi, Simhapura
went to pee. saw the usual stuff....wash basins, sinks, dryers... but, to one side following four toilet cubicles was something I hadn't seen in atleast 2 and a half years - had the words 'Please place feet properly on the squatting pan' on the cubicle door!!HAHAAHAHAHAHAHAH. yes, the indian shit pot. in full glory on an elevated platform with its own cubicle. hurray to shit-pots!!

Saw a Kyocera-Yashica 3012 digicam on display in the duty free (not in the US markets yet). was love at first sight. toyed with the idea of buying it for 45 mins. did research, found nothing online!!! went back and was wondering how i could find out if the thing was worth the price (144 US $). Brain wave... checked the canon power shot A410 price on display (190 US$). went back online...checked price. was 50 dollars less in the US (thanks to Amazon!!). decided the Yahica was forbidden love. moved on. :(

a few minutes later.

lady passing by (looked indian): .....'D' nappatha naal (D-44) enga irruke?

a look of having understood exactly what she said wafts across my face(hurray Vellore!!)

Me: nappatha naal andha pakka irruke. moddala neera ponga, apparam you will see it.
(yes, my tamil broke down; yes, it was far from perfect; but too all u tamilians, she understood me perfectly well!!!)

yay!! karthik happy again. goes running to the free internet tables to start blogging.

Universal Laughter!!

The End

Yes, dammit, I am excited. Indonesia, HERE....I....COME!!!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Learn to be umble!!

Blogging after ages. Been trying to act busy. Couldn't take it anymore; hence, the blog.

Saw this while I was browsing for junk. Found it interesting. Thought the rest of teh blogging world should know about it. Som here goes:

humble (adj.)
c.1250, from O.Fr. humble, earlier humele, from L. humilis "lowly, humble," lit. "on the ground," from humus "earth." Senses of "not self-asserting" and "of low birth or rank" were both in M.E. The verb is c.1380 in the intrans. sense of "to render oneself humble;" 1484 in the trans. sense of "to lower (someone) in dignity."
            "Don't be so humble; you're not that great." [Golda Meir]
To eat humble pie (1830) is from umble pie (1648), pie made from umbles "edible inner parts of an animal" (especially deer), considered a low-class food. The similar sense of similar-sounding words (the "h" of humble was not pronounced then) converged in the pun. Umbles, meanwhile, is M.E. numbles "offal" (with loss of n- through assimilation into preceding article), from O.Fr. nombles "loin, fillet," from L. lumulus, dim. of lumbus "loin."

The bit about the 'umble pie' caught my attention. Would never have known that if not for this site: