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Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Tata Safari Storme Meet with Anil Kapoor and Indibloggers

It was not just another sunny Weekday, it was a day when we were scheduled to meet and have lunch with non-other than the Jhakkas Anil Kapoor. Well, it all started a few days back at around 11PM when I received this mail from Indiblogger to confirm if I would like to have an Exclusive Lunch with Anil Kapoor courtesy Tata Storme and 24 – The Show. Not very much into Bollywood, I asked my friends should I go. And, it was like everybody had a single answer, of course. (check out the the blogpost which led me to this meet)


I was picked up at Vashi with another Indiblogger Deepti by Abhinav in a Bus bound to Pune from Dadar. There I met Ira and another guy (probably Varun) and also the other 3 bloggers (Megahna, Nandini and Vaisakhi). A group of tweeples was also there, who have won some twitter contest. As the journey took its course, I befriended with the Bloggers and few of the tweeples. With the day unfolding we came to know more about the event.
Inside the Tata Motors' Pune Plant
We reached Tata’s Pune factory at around 10 AM, and Ira took the bloggers with her for an exclusive tour of the plant. I must say it was a fascinating trip. Fun wasn’t just watching Anil Kapoor and his awed fanfare but also witnessing the karma-bhoomi of visionaries like of JRD and Ratan Tata. The trip did recalled me the famous story of Sudha Murthy and her postcard on gender bias at the TELCO (now Tata Motors Ltd), which made her the first female engineer in the ‘fraternity’. Touring in an open Tata Safari we saw the assembly line, press line, research centre etc along with the convoy of Anil Kapoor and Tata Motors Sr VP Ankush Arora. Hopping in and out of our vehicle, Tata executives were more than eager to share with us about the different departments of the factory. I particularly like the Torture track where some combat truck was undergoing some tests. 
Torture Track
With fans (of course of Anil Kapoor) all around cheering and clicking snaps, taking videos, we seriously felt like celebrities at that time. I wonder did they try searching for our faces in the later episodes of 24! Shy!
My first shot....Anil with the plant employees

Monday, 9 December 2013

Aisle Be Damned and the Art of Air Travelling

What have I noticed in all my not that frequent and extravagant but still give-or-take average air travelling hours?

Definitely, I have learnt a lot through frisking, re-frisking, picking up thrice in a single day for (again) frisking, left and stamped bag tags, check-in queues, aisle, window and security door seats, hot and cold meals, coffee and a glass of water calls and what not. Then came to my delight this book “Aisle Be Damned” and I realized there’s still so much to learn about the Art of Air Travelling!
Aisle Be Damned
Aisle Be Damned!
Written by an over worked and over traveled Corporate Executive Rishi Piparaiya that too while waiting to catch the flights, clicking the tiny keys on his BlackBerry, the book talks about the nontraditional anecdotes to fly safely, arguably intelligently and luxuriously. Though, I haven’t tried any of it, and too shy to apply, some cheat-codes are reasonably tempting to be learnt and applied while choosing the right queue with right move to win a last minute Business class seat free on one’s economy fare ticket.

Trivia
Book's Title: Aisle Be Damned
Author: Rishi Piapraiya
Page Count: 214
Price: Rs 250 (Rs 188 at Infibeam)
ISBN: 8184954654

Ideas like carrying a machine oil, spare wheel, jack and jumper cables will for sure ridicule you a bit; but as you go through the text you will be highly convinced to pack all these for all your next air journeys. Methods to win a Business seat are no doubt one of the USPs of the book. Rishi takes the reader on a real flight with talk that starts from standing at check-in queues, frisking, boarding, deciding on window or aisle (by the way, I am an All time Window guy), explaining routine flight safety jargon, in-flight booze and food, striking conversations, idea of being picked up at airport and finally putting a long list of references and acknowledgment (that itself was an interesting read).

This is certainly a light conversational book, for everyone to read, irrespective of whether they travel or not. In fact, it gives an amiably pleasurable viewpoint to the things we do notice but fail to acknowledge. I really loved the non-complex flow of language and the fun of reading the text was certainly multiplied with the apt images. It’s a must read at an airport lounge, and for those who are planning to read it in their couch at home – mind it, you won’t regret it, the book is in itself a complete journey.

(My sincere thanks to Sudarshan and Anjali from Rishi's team to offer me this wonderful Book to read and review. I regret not to able to attend the Launch Party, but that's another story.)

P.S.: Would like to add at least Three advices to the fellow air travellers. First, if you are an Indian – do carry Tabasco sauce, it’s a divine remedy to tasteless continental. Second, dear Vegetarians, on an abroad trip (esp South East Asia) – do pack dozens of Maggi 2 Minutes, it’s better to have something than nothing. Third, always be an hour before the boarding time; not like me who reached the Launch party of Aisle Be Damned, just 24hours late, yupp just 24hrs!



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Thursday, 21 November 2013

Few Days at Havelock: How, When and Where?

(It's a second post on Havelock in the series of posts on Andaman. For the teaser, click here.)

Havelock is a beautiful small island situated at about 57 km North East of the Capital town of Port Blair in Andaman Sea. Named after Maj General Henry Havelock, it is the largest among the Ritchie’s Archiepelago islands spread across an area of about 114 sq km.

En Route Havelock, On the government ferry - Under the Heavenly Sky
This post is all about How to reach, When is the Best time and Where to stay in the Havelock.

HOW?
The Havelock Island can be reached by ferry or seaplane from Port Blair.

Reaching Port Blair by Air
There are direct flights to Veer Savarkar International Airport, Port Blair from Chennai, and Kolkata by Air India, JetLite, Jet Airways and Spice Jet. To get sweet deals, book the tickets at least two months in advance else booking tickets for Bangkok would be cheaper ;)
Reaching Port Blair by Ships

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

[ReBlog] A Soap Foam like bug: Spittlebug

Have always been wondering what this spit thing all around on the bushes, generally near the joint of the branches or leaves. Unable to get an answer (and never realizing about Google'ing it), I stopped taking pictures and perhaps started deleting whatever I had.

SpittleBug - Shot at Matheran in 2010
Then few days back, I came across DesiTraveller's blog post on something called Spittle Bug! Woot! It's something like a larvae secreting some foam (or spitting) around it as a protective cover. To know more about these Cercopidae Family bugs, you should visit here.


[REBLOGed] 

Spittlebug: The Soap Foam Bug

A few days ago I wrote about our visit to the Nature farm where they grow organic food and do not use any chemical pesticides. While walking on the farm I noticed a small foam kind of thing on one of the plants.
It was as if somebody was washing clothes and dropped some soapy foam there at best or somebody had spit at worst.  As it was just below a wild flower it was looking rather out-of-place. I clicked a few pictures and was wondering what it could be. I remembered something called Foam bug or more scientifically Spittle bugs. They are also called Froghoppers due to the ability to jump many times its length just like a frog.
Spittle bug with yellow flower
Spittle bugs leave a trail of soap foam kind of substance
Soon I found more of the same foamy substance on a few more plants. In most cases the foam was near a joint of leaf and branch on the plant. On careful examination it appeared there was an Insect larvae in the foam. I   decided to click some more pictures and did some search on Mr. Google. The foam is secreted by the larvae and the adults control the urge to spit all around and behave like good citizens ( Pan and Gutka chewers please learn: even bugs don’t spit around when they grow up)
- See more at: http://desitraveler.com/spittlebug-foam-bug-spit-bug/#sthash.Ycxawp7p.dpuf


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Saturday, 26 October 2013

Quick Post on Travelling to Thailand

What about receiving a Picture Postcard from Thailand? Follow me at twitter.com/PunitDubey and reply my tweet on the same (little search you have to do ;)

Bad, just got one reply and yet to confirm if she received the card or not! But, let me tell you Thailand did offer me a variety of fascinating Picture Postcards and rejuvenated my love for those.

Well, worth sharing is that I am reading completed Rishi Piaraiya's Aisle Be Damned here while waiting for flight on airports, and it's certainly a book worth reading, expect the review soon :)

What could be a better book on airport than one written on airports #AisleBeDamned by RishiPiparaiya #Book #TSBC http://t.co/nwvrnZ80nW

By the way, Ghumakkar is on first official abroad travelling trip and its my first smartphone blogpost :)

cheers...

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