Travel | Jaisalmer – a story of sands and skies

We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls | Anais Nin

I am a mountains-person. Out and out, through and through.

As far as I can remember, I have never liked heat – or dust. Or camels.

Yet, one can just not say no to Jaisalmer. Or the prospect of an unforgettable evening in the middle of the desert – where you travel to, on camel-backs; with tents and supplies for the overnight stay in the middle of nothing. At night, the burst of beuaty in that hollow space remind you of all things celestial and worth wondering, as you gaze at the countless stars – otherwise not visible in the polluted air of the ‘developed’ cities.

These are the snaps from the fort and the desert taken on my trip to the place. Scroll below the gallery for more details about travelling here.

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Travel | Beyond Kasol, to forests and to Grahan

It is better to travel well than to arrive | Buddha

And so is the story of this trip. It is one of those travels taken for the travel rather than for the destination. Personally, one of the most beautiful things that I had seen to naturally exist. The village Grahan is beautiful, indeed – but the trek to the place is a tale in its own surreal taste. Went roaming on the trek thrice during my stay. Enjoyed significantly more every time I went back.

These are pictures shot during the trek to Grahan, Himachal Pradesh. The way to Grahan is a three to four hour trek – depending on your speed, persistence and antics with the camera – from Kasol, the nearest village accessible to the world outside. Walking on foot is the only way to get to the place – but it isn’t as bad as it may seem, for on the way you get to see these scenes.. and much more..

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To be or not to be Arvind Kejriwal?

This article was also published in the Hindustan Times on 14th August 2014.
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Plato had said that one of the penalties for refusing to be a part of politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. In 1999 when Arvind Kejriwal embarked upon his ‘journey for change’, he firmly believed that “change begins with small things”. Back then he may have set on the road to correct the mistake which Plato had pointed out. However, fifteen years from then, one wonders today, what has become of him?

It is a very critical time in the political balance of the country. This is not only a time when nations are taking personalities and stands in the international circle but also one where our country itself needs to define its political personality after decades of regional pushes-and-pulls between the smaller gullies and the bigger corridors of power. I say “critical” with an equal importance to the potential to transform and the power to extinguish the political balance (or what remains of it). It is definitely not the first time when an ‘electoral insurgent’ has announced himself on the scene – J.P. Narayan showed the gates to Indira Gandhi and V.P. Singh did the same to her son. It is also not the first time when the grand old Congress has been humiliated nor the first instance of the so coined “people’s political will” being “triumphant”.

However, it is a critical time in India’s political history because of the abundance of problems that are at hand at home and the plethora of opportunities for a stake in the world’s future, in the international circles. A balanced treatment of both is what is expected of any leader at helm, today. Can political activists – most of who end up being flashes in the pan – deliver on them? As a political optimist, one may say, maybe – and if given time, definitely. Is Kejriwal such a leader who can live up to such expectations (or ‘demands’, if you may)? The answer seems to fade away with every passing day. Continue reading

Movies | 8 | Puncture

Puncture

Puncture

Based on a true story of two lawyers – one of them a coke addict – have to face the music when they take up a lawsuit which turns out to be bigger than expected. Puncture is a brilliant brilliant movie and you can see why it did not get publicity or promotion which other movies do not have to ask for – because it brings out the truth.

It is neat direction and surprisingly good acting packed together. An honest movie that promises to be as entertainig as shockingly true! This movie deserves to be seen. Apparently ‘healthcare’ systems don’t care so much afterall!

P.S. | Reminded me of Erin Brokovich for real!

We don’t need no Sexducation

Originally posted on La La Ladybrain:

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After meaningless calls to some of my writer friends on what to write I actually have nothing to write. They are a bunch of idiots. The only thing I know is even when my spacebar isn’t working; I need to get dirty with a borrowed USB keyboard and a Word document. I need to write. The only tiny glitch is I have no idea about what. So, here I am experimenting with my brain. Whatever you read after this paragraph is nothing but some spontaneous shit put together without any script in my head. I like the sound of that.

This other day I read an article about “MODIfication” (yeah, yeah Modi stands for PM Narendra Modi, smartasses) and how this country is going to change drastically. And then few days back I read they suggested Sex education to be banned in India, not that it ever started. On the…

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Movies | 7 | One Hour Photo

One Hour Photo

One Hour Photo

Oh, smiling again will be tougher without him on the screen.. Robin Williams was one of my favourate actors. The kind of variety and surprise-performances he would throw at you would always convince you of his calibre. It was a shock to read about his death – especially when it was only the first thing I had read after getting up in the morning! And more so because I had seen one of his brilliant movies just the day before! From Flubber, to Hook; Patch Adams and Good Will Hunting and of course, Dead Poets Society!

One Hour Photo brings out the negative side of Robin William’s acting meter. In the movie he plays a photo-film developer at a store; who is obsessed with a family’s affairs, for whom he has been developing pictures for years.

A sinister dark plot which conveys the thrill in your mind without actually showing anything gruesome on the screen. Brilliantly written and directed. Watch this one for a pure acting performance by Williams.

P.S. | When you look for a ‘good’ movie, in Robin Williams you must trust! Period.

 

Movies | 6 | The Queen

The Queen

The Queen

Will Queen Elizabeth turn up for Lady Diana’s funeral? The Queen, directed by Stephen Frier (Dangerous Liasons, Muhammed Ali’s Greatest Fight) is a portrayal of events in the week after Diana’s death. The public, the media, the PMO and the Royal Family all come together in this sharp movie.

Its PM Tony Blair and The Queen. Its modernity and tradition. Masses and classes. Drama and comedy. Emotion and clever satire. And all of it happens around Diana’s death. Brilliant direction. Great production. Superb performances. Its as classy as The King’s Speech.

P.S. | Watch out for the scene where the Queen’s car breaks down. Superbly directed.