Friday, May 31, 2019

Skywatch Friday

Sky keeps changing its pattern, texture and colors from time to time and esp. during the sunrise and sunset it displays incredible changes from the often blue or grey sky. I sky-watch these days more than before and I was never a morning person to wake up to dazzling shower of rising sun so I only end up more with sun setting scenario where the actual settings happen behind the buildings. For a complete sunset I need to move out of the city but it wasn’t a feel bad to catch up with a part of the sky. The sky captured here was from two evenings back; though it wasn’t awesome I liked the pieces of clouds (looking like the handpicked cotton candies before it put into the mouth) scattered on the fore screen of the sky.

Monday, May 27, 2019

RGB Monday

Colorful Kotagiri market street! 

Kotagiri is a beautiful hill station in the Nilgiris surrounded by tea, coffee and vegetable farming and this is a market place in core  area of the town. The market looks like an important place for the farmers and traders to sell their goods and people surrounding in/out the hill town is rely on the market.

Friday, May 24, 2019

BJP Won But Not In Tamil Nadu!

Congrats Mr. Modi and BJP! BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) has swept larger seats in the parliament election and Mr. Narendra Modi as Prime Minister is continuing his office for 2nd time. Though Modi have won and we had to accept the fact and while appreciate the efforts he put for the success, we can’t see it as the decision of entire nation. South Indian states almost swept against Modi and BJP which seems only a section of people want Modi or BJP and not the widespread nation.  A success is a success, whether we accept or not. North and Central Indian states had red carpeted for Modi and their reasons could be anything but certainly couldn’t sense a significant development was the reason for the successive of BJP or Modi. I haven’t great knowledge about the development of other states than Tamil Nadu, but I have ideas about the neighbouring states of Kerala, Andhra and Karnataka    where the influence of governing BJP is different.

Everyone knows that BJP is a religious party based on Hindutva concept but I believe the previous regimes under Vajpayee   weren’t serious taking forward the religion but had been reliable for people.  I think I don’t have the right to comment on states I wasn’t fully aware but coming to Tamil Nadu we have reasons to deny Modi and BJP. In last five years at office, I couldn’t see the Modi govt. promoting any significant projects or development on almost anything. I believe development is a progress happens any government comes to power, but the Modi’s govt. has any reason to continue in office, at least in the state of Tamil Nadu the things they are intend to implement where obviously against people welfare and wealth of state. Though different religious people live in Tamil Nadu, but nothing forces us from being united through the shade of one – Dravidian – and think on rationalism, couldn’t appreciate or invite a principle that impose anything against democracy. India is the largest democratic country and bringing all into a compression of saffron or hindutva is unwelcomed at any cost.

Coming to the state of Tamil Nadu, actor Kamal Hassan’s Makkal Neethi Maiyam (People Justice Centre) party has earned considerable votes to secure 3rd place in the row of vote bank, even though they couldn’t win a seat in both parliament and by-election, sweeping an amount in short span of exists (14 months) is an unexpected twist that reveal people’s tendency for an alternate to the big leads – DMK and ADMK. My candidate or the person I voted R. Rangarajan IAS has led 2nd with the number of votes the party’s candidates secured in the Parliament election and the 3 constitutions in Chennai witnessed considerable vote to the party. In Tamil Nadu, the opposition party alliance has swept all the seats from the state, except the 1 win by the ruling party which alliance with BJP, and it was an expected win even by common men as the almost state is against BJP or Modi and the ruling party doesn’t have an option rather going with BJP to continue their regime in Tamil Nadu. In worst case BJP govt. has failed in looking into the farmers issues and was accused to hold back the Tamil Nadu government in its control and make plans against the people to face this sweep out in TN.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Mangoes and Parakeets Peck

Summer is a season of mangoes! At the end of winter the mango trees in India starts to bloom following new shoot of leaves and in less than a month the mango trees turns fruit-bearing. Mangoes are considered delicious and prime among the sweetest fruits and there’s a word in Tamil called Mukkani (three fruits) where Maa (Mango) is first and Palaa (Jackfruit) and Vaazhai (Banana) make successive landing. In Tamil Nadu, Salem is very popular for tasty mangoes and this district and its surroundings produce tons of tasty mangoes yearly and Periyakulam in Theni district is also called Mango City due to its fair amount of mangoes produced.

Here's someone trying to nip from above
Mangoes do great business in this season of summer, but these days artificially ripen of mangoes are into sale and people has to be cautious while purchasing fruits. In cities it’s becoming rare to see mango trees and no one seems interested to stone out mangoes from the trees like what we used to do in childhood and everyone knows in Tamil Nadu that a stolen mango has high deliciousness than what bought for money. Nature is so gifted with mango trees with ever delicious pulp within a soft skin. A fruit-bearing tree is always an attraction for birds and squirrels, the very first species to taste the essence of the season and I’m glad to live opposite a mango tree, grown within the compound of a neighbour to get me chance to see and hear birds feast on hanging mangoes. 

I see/hear Mynas, Green Parakeets and Asian Koels screeching in the mornings and evenings hiding from the thick foliage of mango tree and sometime I see green parakeet acrobat in peck eating the fresh pulp. Parakeet is a regular sighting in the neighbourhood but mostly they quick screech across the sky and only in summer they stay sometime hunting on the hanging mangoes. Glad I moved to our house to see it happening closer, after moving out of our apartment house where I would see many birds forage on open vegetation. Last week I decided to capture the show that I missed to capture sometime due to laziness or unreachable with camera to focus on the Parakeet. Being a green parakeet it often hid in the greenery of the tree makes it difficult to focus or finding its presence.

Parakeet neatly bit off the pulp, leaving away the seed.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

A detour around Ooty

Trees rise and fall in nature's lap
During my visit to Nilgiris in 2017, I took a detour around the Ooty town, what I usually do or look forward to whatever places I visit, we took the road adjoin The Lawrence School following our stop at the lovely Lovedale Mountain Railway Station, and it was a casual turn toward this road while looked for a place to have lunch that we took along when we moved out of our homestay. The road led through calm and natural presence of woods and shrubs; amid where we found this Indian Gaur (aka Indian Bison) munching quietly some ten feet above our parked car and herd of sheep grazing alongside the road winding through some fresh patches of green or meadows. I really enjoyed taking this route even though the road isn’t good in shape it has some nice country sights where vegetables are cultivated and colourful houses built on hill slopes. Coming across these found the Mountain Railway track winding along the road and it was really surprise for me as I have seen this place and wished to visit when I read an article related to it on the Hindu Metro Plus, very long back, plus it has come in movies esp. the popular Tamil film Vaali.

I loved seeing the arched railway bridge at a turn of the road, which was picturesque but unfortunately it started to rain when nearing the bridge so I couldn’t get clear shots and also the iron fence along the way interrupted the view. There was lot of tiny wildflowers alongside the road and this stretch was really refreshing, breathing through the fresh mountain air and essense of soil and different form the usual views on Ooty. Following were some photos from the drive
Some sheep grazing on the roadsides
A cute one grazing alone
View on some colorful houses and residents made life thought mountains, grazing sheep and cultivating vegetables and tea. Being a part of Ooty perhaps their lives depend on tourism activities. 
A cemetery locating very close to the residences you seen a pic above
Something interesting caught our eyes, as we could see it was some kind of cultivation which resemble some arrangement of stones. There was none around there to enquire about the thing and it wasn't nearby to look closer

Saw this beautiful house on the way made through salubrious environment of green fields, tea garden and fresh mountain breeze.
A pleasant countryside view  
The winding mountain railway track along the road (between Lovedale - Fern Hill) and I wished there was a streamer passing by as we drive through.
Here comes  the pretty arch bridge or underpass of the Nilgiri Mountain Railways... where the popular tamil song Oh Sona (from Vaali) was shot.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Rising Fitness, Health and Fitness Studio – Bro’s Gym Inauguration

My brother has opened a new gym/fitness center in the neighborhood, Neelankarai, ECR, Chennai, and on Wednesday there was its inauguration function held in the presence of friends and family. He already administers a fitness center in the name of same (Rising Fitness) in partnership with friends and now he has executed his independent business named under title ‘Health and Fitness Studio’. He has worked hard last two months to create a theme based interior and it has come out exceptionally good and impressive by sight at first.  The gym is executed in a rental property and is located in the second floor of a building measuring 4500 sqft and he has taken loans to implement this fitness branch. Most of the gym equipment were imported but purchased through a company in Chandigarh that transported things through container truck.

Ribbon cutting
Mom lighting the lamp
Unlike the inauguration of their main fitness center in Madipakkam in 2014, any chief guest was invited and we had no ideas who will make over the show. We had arranged for breakfast for the invited guests and we reached the venue before anyone arrives, except gym staffs, and i took around the gym that was partially rubber floor and equipment were placed neatly with enough space from one another. A row of treadmills and exercise bikes are showcased across the glass panes facing the ECR main road and there’s a separate section for crossfit activities. I thought there isn’t a ribbon cutting event as time outstretched the defined period and most of the guest arrived and took their breakfast in areca plates (that came along the ordered food), my brother’s friend took me to the entrance saying that they’re going to cut ribbon.

But until I come out of the gym I had any idea that I’m going to cut the ribbon, along with my dad! Anyone other than my brother know this until the moment and it was quite unexpected and surprise move by my brother and this really showed his intend and care for me what put me on happy mood. Following this the elders and well-wishers lit the lamp (kuthu vilakku) that was placed in center of the front office and later all moved to the cross fit area for cake cutting. The crossfit area gives a studio/theater feel in the black/white theme and chairs where places there and cake was brought in center. I thought of sliding away to the side of the table placed with cake but my brother called me to come in front and in middle of the table made me realize his another  surprise move. The table was short for me, so he supported me from back to let me lean forward and mom holding my hand cut off the cake as people clapped in as signalling for the very success of the gym. Cutting off things could be side but I believe the real happiness is in its success and make revenues. Hope you all sent your wishes for the grand success of the gym.

Some interior shots 

Tuesday, May 07, 2019

New Purchase: iBall Compbook Excelance OHD

Lately I was looking for a compact laptop or netbook after I come across a smart one during a visit to doctor’s clinic and it was a MacBook for sure (which I'm certain apparently doesn’t need to define, as all apple products are smarter) and the way he dealt with it impressed me and produced a desire to buy one. I know I could not go near the MacBook that totally out of my budget and while come down the options were limited but still some renowned brands priced high the netbooks with specifications same as some local and unknown brands.  I did read many a reviews and comparisons on netbooks around 11 inches, anytime I felt and once get to know the Amazon Summer Offer is ahead, I took it seriously and settled at last for the Indian brand iBall – Compbook Excelance OHD – a Full HD netbook at around ₹9000 ($130) + 10% instant discount. 

I bought a chocolate colour compbook at a weight of about 1 kg and being a prime member of Amazon, compbook was delivered within 24 hrs of booking.  I was excited to power on the compbook (after 3 hrs of charging) and the first thing that stroked me was the spectacular color/contrast of the screen that turned the viewing stunning, enriched and refreshing sight! Thanks to IPS panel to turn things magical on screen and the 32GB emmc storage is left by 20 GB of free space and the 2 GB ram is unexpectedly quick for a leisurely operator alike me.  The multi-touch touchpad is super sensitive to my worn out fingers which lost track the gestures in the long run with my former laptop – what is still good and the compbook is only an alternate that I planned to use for  browsing, social networking and MS word.  Photoshop is strictly no on compbook so my laptop (Dell Inspiron) is the only choice for photo editing and storing data.  

The letter keys on compbook is bigger than the laptop to type but the location of shift, backspace and arrow keys are placed uncomfortable or I need to practice lot to make it usable.  The most impressive of the compbook was the battery that could run 8 hrs without charging, which means the netbook could last more than 2 days for my kind of use. The compbook comes with micro SD slot to expand storage up to 128 GB and also has option of adding internal HDD/SSD up to 1TB. I decided to do anything right now or until the system face trouble with speed or storage. It looks overall a good deal and could only wait and watch how worth the purchase was.  

Friday, May 03, 2019

Simple Mountains and Skies

Shots from a detour, last year, around Arcot and Vellore. The mountainous terrain is a simple pleasure riding through the winters. 

The weather had turned lil better after few days of high temperature, though it doesn't turned cooler, the sea breeze that venture the hot land breeze around afternoon makes feel better. The cyclone that had stroke Odisha and West Bengal created a havoc and unimaginable destruction to lives and livelihood and natural front trees. Hope things turn better quicker for people out their suffering from the heavy storm that blasted at about 200 km/h. 

Linking this post with Skywatch Friday