Friday, 7 December 2018

7: The seventh installment of the Domar Series

The Domar series:
Dangerous Domar - A newly recruited intelligence officer 'Agent Domar' sets out on an international mission to retrieve a pen drive from the enemies of the country who stole the nation's confidential information.
The Return of Dangerous Domar -  An arrest warrant has been issued on Domar after the outbreak of some mysterious deaths across the globe. The case has been assigned to the CBI and now, it is the duty of CBI chief officer Hari Prakash to catch hold of Domar and put him behind the bars.
ROD: Rise of Domar - The story is set in the United States of America where Professor Domar along with Officer Hari Prakash and a team of four students has to safeguard the nuclear weapon designed by Domar before the Russian enemy Karolek Romochka takes it away from them. 
Dangerous Domar 4 - The story begins in Jamaica from where Domar and Hari set out on their journey to Seoul to catch hold of the international terrorist Bong-Cha.
Dangerous Domar 5 - With just 46 hours in hand to save the city, Domar and Hari set out on a major operation to save the city and the people from an unprecedented nuclear attack.
Fall of Domar - With the shattering news of Domar's death, Hari hires a new recruit 'Agent Karthick' with whom he sets out to unveil the mystery behind Domar's death. 

Disclaimer
The story will be high on sarcasm and exaggeration. 

----

Pirin Mountains, Bulgaria
Пирин
Twice in a month, Denz heads to one of the dense forests of Bulgaria to exercise. He always considered nature as a perfect gymnasium. As usual, he got into the section of the forest that had thick trees which were a good platform for him to perform pull-ups. He placed his gear aside, took off his jerkin and placed it on his bag. He wore a thick military cargo pant and a light green vest. He held on to the tree with both his hands and then pulled himself upwards. As he got to the 230th pull-up, the leaves crackling noise distracted him. He stopped for a moment and concentrated on the surrounding as he hung on to the tree. The crackling sound stopped. He waited for couple more moments before he resumed his pull-ups. Twenty seconds later, he sensed something else. His reflexes were too brisk that he instantly caught the arrow that headed his way from his left. It was a Tranquilizer Arrow. Holding the arrow in his left hand, Denz slowly let himself on the ground. He then concentrated on his left. He heard the leaves crackling noise again from his left, but it was gentle this time. He headed towards the direction of the crackling noise. He then instantly moved at a great speed, as though hurled by a catapult, towards the bush that lay to his right. He then grabbed a man by his neck with his legs, twisted it so hard that the man's neck turned backward leaving him dead instantly. Denz stood there holding the Tranquilizer Arrow. He noticed three other men revealing themselves from the bush. All the three men surround him. He did not think twice. He immediately swung the Tranquilizer Arrow to the man who stood right in front of him. He then took the shotgun from the holster of the dead man and shot the man who stood towards his left twice - passing one bullet through his chest and one through his forehead. All these happened in less than 2 seconds. He then sensed some panic from the third man who was standing towards his right. He ran towards the third man and jumped on to him. He then put the shotgun into his mouth. They both heard another noise. It was a roar. 
'You know what that is?' asked Denz. 
The man who had the shotgun pointed in his mouth nodded a no. 
'That's a Panther. You know what happens when a Panther roars?' As Denz explained this, they both could sense the footsteps of the Panther approaching them. He continued, 'when the Panther roars, even the brave hunter who has come all the way to kill it will go hiding.' The footsteps approach faster and Denz continued, 'I am not a hunter, I am a killer.' He shot the man and then looked up to the fast-approaching Panther and shot at it twice.

Friday, 2 November 2018

Thank you for not dating



This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.



Some might say that it's wrong for a girl to date a guy before marriage. If you ask my opinion on that fact I would brand it as "absolute absurdity". Trust me, this absurdity still prevails in most parts of my country and it is worse with the current generation. 

The problem with the current generation is, we, as the next gen species, are exposed to a wide variety of cultures across the World (thanks to the internet, access to the information is now made easy) and we have an option to choose and adapt the culture that suits our expectations (oh well, except the North Koreans). The adaptability feature comes with a vulnerability as an add-on, like a virus destroying the computer. If a person picks a certain culture and decides to adopt that, he/she should first do a compatibility check. If that particular culture is compatible with the society he lives in, then the adaptability factor is handled with ease. 

Now map the above explanation with this simple analogy - if you have a motherboard that supports a DDR3 RAM, you cannot buy a DDR2 RAM and ask the motherboard to adapt to it. You definitely need to opt for a DDR3 RAM or the only other option you've is to change the motherboard that fits the DDR2 RAM. You can change the RAM as per the motherboard's requirement but if you want to change the motherboard, it incurs additional cost. Society is the motherboard and the culture is the RAM. You cannot change the society unless you're a rebel who really want to bring in a change that each and every person out there is convinced with (this is the cost involved). The society accepts the culture only if it is compatible with it. 

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Fall of Domar

The Domar series:
Dangerous Domar - A newly recruited intelligence officer 'Agent Domar' sets out on an international mission to retrieve a pen drive from the enemies of the country who stole the nation's confidential information.
The Return of Dangerous Domar -  An arrest warrant has been issued on Domar after the outbreak of some mysterious deaths across the globe. The case has been assigned to the CBI and now, it is the duty of CBI chief officer Hari Prakash to catch hold of Domar and put him behind the bars.
ROD: Rise of Domar - The story is set in the United States of America where Professor Domar along with Officer Hari Prakash and a team of four students has to safeguard the nuclear weapon designed by Domar before the Russian enemy Karolek Romochka takes it away from them. 
Dangerous Domar 4 - The story begins in Jamaica from where Domar and Hari set out on their journey to Seoul to catch hold of the international terrorist Bong-Cha.
Dangerous Domar 5 - With just 46 hours in hand to save the city, Domar and Hari set out on a major operation to save the city and the people from an unprecedented nuclear attack.

Disclaimer
All the characters and the events that appear in this story are purely fictional. The events are exclusively intended to target or hurt any particular country, an organization, an individual or even a wild animal - of course, this ain't a fairy tale. There is violence involved in this story.

Fall of Domar

December 19 | 19:15 EST
JFK International Airport, New York
Attention, dear passengers. The boarding is now open for the Swiss Airlines flight number LX23 bound for Geneva. Passengers are requested to proceed to the E gates. 
The announcement was made and Hari had a worried look on his face. Noticing this, Domar said, 'you look a little worried. I haven't seen you carry that look before.' 
'Yeah man, I have a bad feeling. Is it mandatory for you to attend this meeting?' asked Hari.
'Well, it's the United Nations and I gotta do what I gotta do,' said Domar.
Hari hugged Domar and said, 'you better take care of yourself, man. I won't be there to keep a watch on you.' 

Domar put on his jacket and backpack and made his move towards the E gates while Hari stood there and watched him leave. Hari, on noticing Domar disappearing in the crowd, marched towards the exit gate. Exiting the airport, he walked past the loading zone and got into the parking zone. Reaching his car, Hari had another sense of bad feeling. He looked at his watch. It was analog and it was a black Hermes Arceau maxi. The watch showed the time as 19:40. He opened the door of his Nissan Armada SUV and got into it. He looked at the airport terminal and then drove towards the freeway. 

December 20 | 06:40 EST
Bedford-Stuyvesant, New York
The alarm, after a couple of snoozes, woke Hari up from a not-so-pleasant sleep. He reached for his spectacles he placed on the side draw and wore those on. He then reached for the television remote and turned it on. What he saw next shook him up. He heard the news reporter say the following,
It is a horrifying event. The death toll is 35. Not even a single passenger who was onboard survived the crash. 
Hari switched the channel to Fox news. The headlines scrolling went like this,
Swiss Airlines LX23 bound for Geneva was crashed 4 hours post its departure, approximately 400 miles east of Nuuk, Greenland.  
The news startled Hari. He sat down on the bed with sweat all over his face. He was able to feel his pulse rate rising. He got up, walked to the dining table, and fetched himself some water. Gulping down some of the water, he threw the glass aside leaving the glass pieces shatter all over the floor. He screamed deep from his throat. The scream was loud that it startled his neighbors living 121 yards away from his house.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

You're hired!

In case you're wondering, this article is all about the 'ridiculous-yet-mandated' phase of the Indian guys aged between 26-32, and that's called 'The Arranged Marriage'. I would define arranged marriage as a process that is purely linked to the age, job status, savings and assets of an individual which is forced upon him/her by the parents just for the sake of satisfying the needs of the society in order to live a guilt-free life. Trust me, this is exactly what is happening over the decades and the situation has worsened in the recent times. Increase in inflation and interest rates had a huge influence on the supply and demand. As we all are aware that the price of a commodity is determined by the interaction of supply and demand in a market, the same principle is applied here. You might be wondering what the hell arranged marriage has to do with the economics, but trust me, my friend, arranged marriage has nowadays turned into a 'business deal'. 

Let me walk you through what happened during my first meetup. Not so long ago, I was brainwashed by my parents and they got me agreed to meet a girl, who was a complete stranger to me. Not that I hate girls, I don't really understand the logic behind arranged marriages. Still, I was a little excited as it was my first experience and I wanted to endure it. I, along with my parents and grandparents (I know that sounds weird), was there at the bride's house. After minutes of being in a state of discomfort, I was finally made to talk one-on-one with the girl. The conversation went like this, 

Me: Hello! 
Stranger girl: *smiles and doesn't respond anything*
Me: *before I could speak, she interrupted*
Stranger girl: What's your take-home salary?
Me: *gave a stunned look and answered the question*
Stranger girl: Hmmm, well, what will be the hike in your salary you are expecting from your current organization the forthcoming year?
Me: *i was a little frustrated yet answered the question*
Stranger girl: Are you willing to relocate if everything goes well?

My frustration turned into irritation that reached its level of saturation. I literally felt like I was attending some final level HR interview seeking a job at a CMMI level 5 company (to be honest, that would've been way easier and less frustrating experience). There's a saying that goes like 'first impression is the best impression' and my first impression towards arranged marriage was completely ruined. But, this experience didn't let me down or made me feel terrible, instead, it made me analyze what went wrong with the process that was supposed to be fun and exciting turned into an utterly frustrating event. Upon further analyzing, I found it fascinating that how most of the things in the universe are interconnected with each other - like arranged marriages and job interview process. 

Before getting further into the explanation, here is the categorization of the parties involved in the process of arranged marriage and their link to the job interview process. 

Marriage Bureau Agents - Job Consultants
Bride's Parents - Human Resource Managers
Bride - Project Manager
Bride's Uncle, Elder Brother or Sister - Interview panelists
Bride's Grandparents - On-site or offshore client

Friday, 29 April 2016

Hong Kong Layover

April 12th - CX 632 delayed by 3 hours.
April 13th - CX 632 delayed by 4 hours.
April 14th - No trace of departure of CX 632. There was a notice in Cathay Pacific website stating that all the flights to Hong Kong may experience a major delay due to extremely bad weather.
April 15th - CX 632 delayed by 4.5 hours.

This shattered my hopes. I booked my flight to LA in such a way that I've a good 7 hours layover at Hong Kong allowing me to sneak into the city and spend at least 3 to 4 hours exploring it. Delay means trouble. The more the delay the less the chances of sneaking into the city. I thought I was doomed. I was afraid that all the research and all the plans I've been making for the past two months, especially for Hong Kong, were going to be a waste. Then came the D-Day (the departure day), April 16th. I was at the airport at 10.30 pm on April 15th, that is 3 hours before the departure, and that's when I heard the golden words from the Cathay Pacific staff. The conversation went like this,

Airline staff: Good evening, Sir. Here's your immigration form.
Me: Thank you! Is the flight departing on time today?
Airline staff: Luckily, yes, Sir.
Me: (with an enlightened face) Are you serious? The flight has been experiencing some crazy delays for the past one week.
Airline staff: It was delayed every day for the past one month, Sir. Luckily, we don't see any trouble today as the incoming aircraft from Hong Kong is right on time. We're departing as per the schedule today. 

That's how my adventure begun. 

I had no hopes on visiting Hong Kong until I heard those golden words from the airline staff. After dropping my baggage, I sneaked into the security check, which was a very long and haunting queue, and starting visualizing the plans I made for the layover. 

Departure from Chennai - 1.50 am IST; Arrival at Hong Kong - 9 am HKT; Connecting flight to Los Angeles - 4.30 pm HKT.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Follow me into the Jungle


Be warned that this post will be incredibly lengthy. Have lots of patience to read this. I can assure you it will be worth the read if you're planning a forest trip in Kerala.


Gavi is a very small village located amidst the thick forests of Western Ghats and it is a part of the World famous Periyar Tiger reserve (well, i'm not sure whether the babies in Namibia know about this, but trust me, this is World famous). Gavi can be reached by two ways and by only one mode (road transport). One option is to make an entry from Kerala, where you need to reach Ernakulam (Cochi is the nearest airport) or Kottayam (again, Cochi is the nearest airport) and take a bus all the way to a place called Kumily (you'll burst into a hearty laugh if someone calls this a hill station). From Kumily, you need to reach Gavi either by hiring a jeep or by taking an Ordinary bus service that runs between Kumily and Pathanamthitta (2 buses per day), which i'll be discussing in detail as the post progresses. The other option is to make an entry from Tamil Nadu, where you need to reach either Madurai or Theni (Madurai is the nearest airport) and take a bus all the way to the mother of all hill stations Kumily. You poor thing have no other option than to take either jeep or the Ordinary bus services (or by your own car if you're self driving) to reach Gavi from Kumily, even if you make an entry from Tamil Nadu.   

Option 1:
Chennai to Kottayam - distance: 749 Km (overnight journey by train)
Kottayam to Kumily - distance: 108 Km (4 hours journey by KSRTC bus) 
Kumily to Gavi - distance: 32 Km (1.5 hours journey by Ordinary KSRTC bus)

Option 2:
Chennai to Madurai - distance: 472 Km (overnight journey by train)
Madurai to Kumily - distance: 141 Km (4 hours journey by TNSTC bus)
Kumily to Gavi - distance: 32 Km (1.5 hours journey by Ordinary KSRTC bus)

I decided to choose option 2 as option 1 was ruled out because of festive season (no train tickets were available from Chennai to Kottayam). In the route map, the total distance between Chennai to Gavi is shown as 642 Km, which is applicable when you're driving from Chennai to Gavi on your own vehicle (conditions apply) and it can increase according to the road conditions.

My option 2 had this plan: Chennai to Madurai by Duronto Express (departed on October 21st 10.30 pm and arrived on 22nd 7 am) - Madurai to Kumily by bus (departed at 8 am on 22nd and arrived at 12 pm on 22nd) - Kumily to Gavi by Ordinary KSRTC bus (departed at 1.15 pm on 23rd and arrived at 2.45 pm on 23rd). Then, depart from Gavi on 24th by following a different plan, which i'll explain as the post progresses (told you, it will be an incredibly long post).