Monthly Archives: July 2010

Fields and Flowers

Once an idea gets into your head, it remains there… and pushes you to do something about it.

This time it was the idea to get out somewhere on the weekend… anywhere… But when a variety of factors coalesce together on the work-family-home front, from domestic chores to incomplete assignments, there were only a couple of hours before the mind begins to panic at the dawn of another Monday!

So with the breeze in our face (and a bit of drizzle), and the wind in our hair, we decided to explore the territory closest to home—around Porvorim! The plan was to detour off the Mandovi bridge, ride along the river and make our way to the other side of the Chorao island.


These marshy regions are home to a number of migratory birds once the rains have past. (Note to self: Have to visit these places around Oct-Nov again). Some chose to call it ‘wastelands’ (being non-agricultural), I choose to call it ‘home’

Flowers in the fields

Every part of the fields were filled with flowers!


From a distance they look unattractive, but move in closer and you will find beauty beyond compare!


The place is a labyrinth of interconnected waterways.


Any place that you stop offers a serene and calm view.

senenity-calm water

The mind was refreshed. It was time to head back.

Field work – Netravali

Field work. For a student, it is the drudgery of gathering and collating first hand data. While for a farmer, it is a world of its own. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that this weekend, I experienced ‘field work’, first hand!

Netravali (or as the signboards put it, Neturlim) is a part of the western ghats of Goa lying between the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary to its north and Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary to its south. A 75 km drive from Panaji and we were in the most ethereal surroundings I have seen in a long time.

The first view of the hills capped with dark rain clouds left me awestruck!

Netravali forest range and clouds

The rain clouds soon translated into heavy shower…

rain on the glass

… but not after I had tried my hand at a few scenic captures.

Small waterfall

Mushrooms on a dried log

Netravali boasts of Black Panthers, Great Pied Hornbills, King Cobras, Giant Squirrels, Slender Loris. Though we were not lucky enough to chance on any of these, the purple crab, the dung beetle and the ‘armor plated bug’ that we spotted were quite a find!

Fields of Netravali Panorama

The way back had its own surprises in store. It was the time of the year when people transplant the rice-paddy and the people in the Netravali village did not object to us interrupting them with our photography and our questions… 🙂

Transplanting rice paddy

Step farming


Pictures from a Plane – Part II

Another trip, another flight… and a new airport. This time it was the Mumbai Domestic Airport*.

There was one thing that I realized about myself. The first thought that runs through my mind when I visit a new place is that I compare it with the old. Be it the food I eat, the shops I visit or the service I get. There is always a sub-conscious benchmark that I gauge the new experience with.

The verdict this time… the flight was on time, there was not much of entertainment at the airport lounge and so the pictures were few.

Mumbai airport lounge HDR pan

Airport lounge HDR pan

Lounge chairs

Two's company

Lounge Lanterns

Lounge Lanterns

Flight take off

Take off

… that’s the Worli sea face below (missed clicking the Sea-link because of flight restrictions on electronics during take off)

Airplane lunch

The meal at 7100 m

Plane landing


And before you know it, the plates have been cleared and its time to land.

* I prefer this name to the utterly confusing, Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport

What is Facebook?

My elder sister has just got addicted to Facebook. And while her kids study, she logs in the addictive social networking site and uploads photos.

Megan, her 8 year old, was at the receiving end of her Mom’s divided attention and piqued. “What is Facebook?” To which her Mom replied, “It’s a place where you keep faces of people.” An hour later, Megan drops off a tiny booklet her Mom’s hand. “Here,” she said. “I made a facebook for you. Now you don’t have to waste your time on the computer.”

Joke on Facebook

"Face" book

Mr. Paul The Octopus

Enough! Way too much publicity for this Octopus, Paul-or-whatever! So I thought I’d add a twist of my own…
For all those who still want to gobble on butter garlic stew of this chap, look carefully at what he is predicting 😮

Octopus Paul the Psychic

No Comments 😉

Credits: Photoshop CS2

(didn’t want to get into any copyright issues)

Milestones – GM Wedding

You may choose to call it a ‘before-after’, or a ‘work that was in progress’ for almost 6 months prior to the big day… I teased my bride-to-be, that every evening after a day’s work at office, these little preparations were giving meaning to my life 😉

Here are a few pics to share those moments… we choose to call them “Milestones”…

Milestone #1: The Card

Milestone #1: The Card

First came the design… should it be a typical silvery white card, with cherubic angels floating around… or could we go the Indian way? We chose the second option. And once the cards were done it was time to visit my calligraphy skills again.

Milestone #2: Church deco

Milestone #2: Church Deco

We gave Paperworks a reason to smile with the amount of business they got during our wedding. From paper for the card, to the church flowers to the mass booklets. The flowers you see were made in 3 stages—petals were cut, then stuck onto wires and then put together on a stem—finally topped up with ribbons and nets.

Never thought I would learn so much about flower making!

Milestone #3: The Bouquet

Milestone #3: The Bouquet

Fresh flowers or artificial was the big question. It ended being flowers from Mumbai, garnished with beads, ribbons and glitter from goa.

Milestone #4: The Cake

Milestone #4: The Cake

There is a whole lot of cake designing happening out there. I did my bit to see that our wedding cake was a design we wanted. And then the cake went from the computer to the baker!

Milestone #5: Favors

Milestone #5: Favors

Stockings for flowers, pollen and green ribbon… would never have known that shops for all these existed right under my nose all this while! How many favors should be made and should they be in different colors? Questions that had to be answered!

Milestone #6: Reception table deco

Milestone #6: Reception table deco

This was an idea that came out of the blue to the two of us… and once the idea landed, it had to be seen to completion! Even if the idea meant getting white sand from Betalbatim, shells from Quegdevelim and mud pots from the famous Mapusa market … and finally painted in gold!

Milestone #7: Hymn Booklets

Milestone #7: Hymn Booklets

Once again, an evening spent selecting the right paper, then the prayers composed in collaboration with the celebrant and then the fun at printing all through the night.

Milestone #8: Photoshoot planning

Milestone #8: Photoshoot planning

3 meetings with the photographer detailing each aspect of the wedding and making sure the essence of the wedding is not lost in a flurry of flashes and poses

Milestone #9: Flower baskets

Milestone #9: Flower baskets

Once again, a Mumbai-Goa collaboration. This time my sister pitched in to decorate the baskets.

Milestone #10: House deco

Milestone #10: House deco

I would never have looked so great if we had got the expert help of a dear friend… with the unending ideas of making 3D hearts for every door.

Milestone #11: The Rings

Milestone #11: The Rings

Family goldsmith to the rescue… and the ring holder all the way from Jakarta.

Milestone #12: Give aways

Milestone #12: Give aways

These had an interesting story to tell for themselves. The designing was not an issue, however the plastic was cut in Delhi and printed in Dehradun and then prototypes were sent back and forth. The saga didnt end here… wrapping each give away 3 days before the wedding was a celebration in itself with all the guests helping out.

Milestone #13: Shopping

Milestone #13: Shopping

This is one area where I still need to grow in the virtue of patience… I was gently tutored by bride-to-be into the conviction that a groom needs to look different on that day. So, my old wardrobe had to make room for the new. Beginning with the gown to the suit, from the material for the flower-girls and bridesmaid to the gifts … there was a lot to learn!

Milestone #14: Church Arrangements

Milestone #14: Church Arrangements

Delegation can be difficult! It entails trust! And the morning of the wedding is all about delegation. And so, armed with a detailed description to the last detail, our friends set out to the church to see that everything was in place.

Milestone #15: Travel & Accomodation

Milestone #15: Travel & Accomodation

This little card meant a lot to transport the right people from airport and station, in the right vehicle to the right hotel, and then to the church on time! A logistical nightmare even for the best of managers!

Milestone #16: Signing in the same book

Milestone #16: Signing in

Everything falls into place on that one day, which brings back a smile everytime we think of these milestones that went to make it so… precious.

Milestones have been crossed, and another journey begins.