On the threshold…

My dear blogger buddies and million+ readers,
Exactly this day, last year, I published my first post and what a marvelous journey it has been thus far. The joy of seeing my words being published on the internet was ‘something’! And then finding so many excited fellow bloggers, first-time greetings turning into friendship. However, all things have to change as change is the only constant! The sole purpose behind this blog creation has been fulfilled now and I have no more words to share with this world as the urge to capture newer horizons propels me elsewhere!This blog will now become a private dialogue space now that she has turned one! Trust me, none of my words will make sense to anyone henceforth!

I thank you all for being a part of this wonderful experience…a phase of a journey that will always remain special! To all you youngistan, soar high as you chase your dreams. To all of us wondering whether chasing our dream was a good thing and should it be continued further..well, single-minded dedication and the patience to pursue it will bring success coz that’s how HE meant it to be. To all of us who have given up, arise and begin now! Trust Life – it is the best Teacher!

OK! Enough of my wisecracks. Better leave this to the expert. Signing off now with an inspiring piece from Paulo Coelho…

“It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting……Before a dream is realized, the Soul of the World tests everything that was learned along the way. It does this not because it is evil, but so that we can, in addition to realizing our dreams master the lessons we have learned as we have moved toward that dream. That’s the point at which most people give up…. (At this point) Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of search is a second’s encounter with God and with eternity.”

May the force be with you

Vins the PoohP.S: This does not in any way mean that I will not visit you. You will still enjoy the privilege of my ‘esteemed’ readership!! have to tolerate my nuisance

Rewards & Recognition!!

Ok! It’s that time of the year to acknowledge, appreciate and encourage and boy, am I delighted to do the honors!! First, for a little bit of trivia – related of course, a) These awards have been personally conceived and designed by me, b) I have achieved intermediate editing skills on Adobe Photoshop in the process and c) I have lifted images off the internet whenever some copyrights were mentioned but have camouflaged them successfully …hopefully!
As for me, Vinnie the Pooh having completed six months of probation on blogosphere, I must offer my heartiest gratitude to all my fellow bloggers and readers (forced at gun-point) and accept my permanent anchor-ship in blogosphere. I hope that you love your awards and do me a favor by putting it up on your blog space, though not doing so is entirely at your own risk – risk to life n limb or risk to lose my coveted readership. Ok. Now lets move on to the point:

1) ‘Young Writer’: This award goes to Senorita, my friend, philosopher and guide, who has now also turned into a ‘Young Writer’ with her work ‘R ki Shaadi’ being published in an E-zine. This award is in joint association of me and The Writer’s Guild, since along with the burden of being my offline buddy, she now dons another hat of ‘online writer cum bottoms-up buddy.

2) ‘Lazy & Crazy Blogger’: This award, no doubt goes to ‘Wobble bubble’ who in his own words says that he tries to look at this world with half sleepy eyes and equally sleepy mind…Now what can one say, with no water and clothes in that barren desert, Life must be pretty tough! How he manages to enter blogosphere is indeed a mystery!

3) ‘Picturesque Blogger’ : This award goes to the one and only blogger Ruffled Soul aka Sawan for his outstanding pictures which most often speak louder than the words on his space! Not that his words are of any less worth, but we readers just love to see images, don’t we? Even as I compose this post, I see that he has metamorphosed into a whole new skin – so colorful and beautiful – welcoming the new year!

4) ‘Young, Witty, Crazy Sweet Blogger’ : This award goes to our ‘Youngistan’ – emerging hero. He is not only creative to the core but also a simple philosopher who can reach lower frequencies to teach higher frequencies with his wit and sweet charm. I’m sure he will make our country proud one day, so it makes sense to serenade him and bask in his reflected glory!

5) ‘Pure, Eternal Poetess’ : This award goes to the highly acclaimed poetess that I know of – Scrawler. Though she hasn’t published any of them, her poetry is pure and takes one to eternity. But I confess that most of the times it touches my brain box at a tangent and I wonder at my courage and audacity to read and appreciate such sublime words.

6) ‘Blogger of Substance’ : This award goes to Father Jerry who writes ‘Substance’ and makes me all red when I look at my posts! Though we started blogging at the same time, he is way ahead in the race at 64. I do not hope to compete with him for reasons known entirely to me.

7) ‘My Blogger Buddy’: This is in recognition of tolerating my awful posts and commenting to compensate for ‘sensible’ words in my space. Right! This goes to all of you again…Yippie! Yey! Congratulations, my sweet blogger buddies, you have received this one from my heart, Promise!

 P.S: For readers who want to be in my privileged circle of ‘blogger buddies’, please convey your gratitude in my comments page and put this gift on your blog space. No need of any exclusive permission from me. Just grab one!

Friend Ship and the sea of life!

I woke up early at 6 in the morning to the December chills in Mumbai, with a frozen head and a wish for a wee nap. December chills just give a taste of the coming New Year chills and Nature’s way to encourage hapless souls like me who tend to freeze. Some major thawing with a hot cup of coffee is the best de-freeze! Talking about coffee and the caffeine in it, maybe some other day….for now my day continues…The juices in my head began to dance and I could add 2+2. And what do I see – a mini beauty parlor session! My nieces had their annual day in school and these kids each had an item to perform. Hia looked her part as the Bharathanatyam dancer with her ‘extra long hair and kohl lined eyes’. Dia was part of a kick-ass group all ready in her shiny hot pants to perform ‘Move your baadi, baby’ (body in written English)! To think that their head-mistress is a lady reputed to be quite stern and ancient! Anyways…my head was still entangled somewhere…just couldn’t point a finger, where?

I avoided the news, the bad news rather what with all news channels focusing only on terrorism, scandals, corruption and other ‘live’ footage crap happening around the length and breadth of our country. How about some Good News, guys?
So , I watched some Old School re-runs on Zee Café, and felt a tinge of sadness ‘why don’t they make such sweet serials anymore?’, especially ‘The Wonder years’, the li’l heroine is also ‘Vinnie’!

Later, I scanned the entire gamut of channels, none of it made up for the ‘missing’ link though. Switched off and began gazing at the lone almond tree outside my window. Just this monsoon, it was a beauty with fresh leaves and twigs spreading new hope and dreams, but now the little dry leaves that hung on the branches were in the get-set position. A slight swoosh and there they would ‘go’! A little nest was vacated too…

After a necessary bath though winters sitting at home don’t mandate it as ‘necessary’ but for the sake of the family, I sacrificed!, I did some CTRL f in my mind folders, still couldn’t trace it. At around 11:30, I got a call from A asking whether I’m at home and Can she visit me? I was thrilled, you know A and me were somewhat inseparable until she ‘fell’ and got married to S. In 5 minutes, she was home!

Now, God knows if there is a way to welcome old friends or not, but we couldn’t care for that… we started chatting right away. I was in Chennai and she got married, job roles had changed, house roles had changed, common friends had changed.. In fact we were so engrossed in exchanging the past 2 and half years…My mom had to take care about the juice and stuff! After some time, I was light and happy and she too looked renewed! She wouldn’t have left if not for her mom who called up for the umpteenth time! ‘A’ was visiting her parents who stay close by. So lunch was at 3 pm and the juice was forgotten!

Later P, an ex-colleague calls up to give some news and I inform of A’s visit. That set us up…We chatted again and shared another set of common cherished memories! The oldies still remembered me as the ‘Masala chai wali’! He too wouldn’t disconnect had it not been for his weekend job of teaching college kids! By now, I was more than delighted and waiting for more!

Then I come online to know a status of a course I have yet to complete. The email ID registered with that university was a very old one, so I logged into that account. Yes, I did remember my password after some rattling though! And, who sends a ‘Hi’? N, of course!
I cant believe my eyes..N and me have climbed trees, chased dogs, invented new strategy games, saved little kids from the bullies, went through the same school and college and majored in the same subject! He was starting his day in London and I was waiting for more!! Somehow, I knew it was my day today. God has been kind to me. N and me had a long catching up to do…he was dead busy but came up with new views for my life! He too wouldn’t log off, had it not been for a deadline. But, I was in Nirvanic bliss!

These old friends had made my day! They healed me, they entangled the mess, they found the missing link for me! I was reminded something about friends being gifts, we give ourselves! I was also reminded of the 4-part series of Karthik with F for friendship! Friendship is surely the best investment for a healthy life. For investment tips, please read the series at ‘Youngistan’ in my blog list. Thank you, friends!

Har Blog kuch kehtha hain…

Ok! After this huge fiasco had ended and we both had decided to move on, I looked at my blog and tried to see through his eyes. Why did he want to see my stupid blog, even after I had threatened him with dire consequences if he does so? What’s the big deal if he follows it and why am I so possessive anyways! To solve this mystery, I transformed into a third identity, this time an un-named one though. Now, this third identity or character enters my blog for the first time…she digs up my precious archives and notes down any and every little thing of no significance whatsoever! By the time she starts from July and ends up till date, she is completely exhausted and her notebook is filled up till the very end, but her face is glowing with a kind of discovery that only Columbus must have felt on seeing land after so many months at sea!

I was quite taken aback with her expression and also sad that I couldnt see the same. She handed me her notebook and vanished into me! I was back as Vin, with her notebook in my trembling fingers and an anxious itch in my mind. What has she unearthed? What will I get to know? Will I ever be able to put down my thoughts, crazy or worse? But, there was nothing about my posts or my blog or about my beautiful template or my wonderful writing skills! She had noted down only about all her feelings and the little emotions triggered in her in the journey through my virtual life.

She felt warm tears welling up when she saw frustation, she felt joy when she saw happy moments, she felt a sense of despair and strength during the terror moments, she felt content at sheer creativity, she felt healed by the inspiring quotes. She had even learnt so much from my co-blogger’s, they gifted her the spices of their life, they encouraged her by sharing their experiences, they in turn added a different flavor to my posts which were otherwise quite boring! She thanked me at the end for sharing my moments here. I felt hollow, stupid and almost in tears…but enlightened!

To think that I wanted to close my blog once upon a time and worst still deprive a ‘thirsty’ soul, I feel healed now that the blog is up and running in all its glory! I made a final agreement with him and have invited him! He has promised not to communicate with me in any form!! Thank a million, Sen and folks…you guys stopped me from committing the gravest sin ever, forever in your debt! I can sleep in peace now! If my stupid blog can bring someone a little happiness, then why not?

A Brief Encounter with Startup-giri

                 ‘Imagine this world with the same concept of living but with a slight difference and this difference would be that of ‘communication’. What if, mankind spanning the entire globe expressed themselves using a single protocol. How would life be if we humans spoke, wrote, heard a single universal language? Would it be called a language in the first place? No, It would probably be the communication protocol for humans!
                 In real terms, this is not possible, but virtually it is. Electronic mail is the communication order of our times. What if, you wrote your mail in Hindi, but your bong friend received it in Bengali without you having to learn Bengali? Then, probably you wouldn’t learn French just to impress that beautiful French blonde you met online or maybe send an ‘I love you’ in all possible languages to your beloved!
                The possibilities are endless and so are your choices. And providing you with these choices is our challenge. We, at GlobalLanguageMail.com introduce ourselves as the worlds only portal for providing free email service in a language that you prefer.”

Most successful start-ups were born out of an idea. Young college kids, fire in their belly’s, bored of studies, put on their thinking caps one fine day and came up with this – a free email service provider which supports multi language conversion and unheard of in those times! And, what an idea! The kids tried for quite a long list of possible domain names, but sadly, all were taken except for this : ‘GlobalLanguageMail’. So, that was it. The kids registered and again put on their thinking caps to plan, innovate, co-ordinate, delegate and most of all market!

Some things happened, some didn’t, God knows best! The kids didnt find a VC. For the sake of non-dotcom folks, I would explain (in brief!) who or what is a VC? See, most brains rot when it succumbs to loads of money in the pockets, such brains cannot function any further. Hence, such brains ‘steal’ from brains which sit on top of ’empty pockets’. We call them VC’s or Venture Capitalists – these guys capitalise on poor guy’s venture and capitalise they do, big time! The kids were poor, they were still on pocket money (read neglible chillar); technology and time waits for no man or kid, so the ‘idea’ died off…The DOTCOM idea busted!

Today, as I was sorting some old papers, I came across this write-up that I had conceived years ago. Yes! I was the official Content Developer cum Designer, me being the English literate and the one member from Venus, the other three from Mars! Forgive me, guys:) Plain logic that girls are better at creating or designing content than ‘developing code’, ‘strategising’, ‘building core competence’ and other inane, perfectly avoidable tasks.

I put this here for the gang: me, P, S & B, so that when we reflect upon the past, we are reminded of the many things that ‘could have been’; the many paths that ‘could be taken’ and the many friends that ‘should be made’ ! Thanks gang for crossing my path…

Thank you, God!

Hello God,

If you happen to stumble upon this post, an event for which I believe the probability is 0.00000000009999 since its titled and labelled with you, so that means you ‘will stumble upon’ my post, I want to let you know quite a few things. Not that I fear you or expect any favors for entry to heaven, but nevertheless, you need to know what Vin really thought about you and thinks about you, albeit you seldom do much in keeping with her wishes. Still…

Let me refresh your memory, in case you rely on such human tools. I belong to a wonderful set of ‘family’, for starters we are a group of ‘self-styled combat warriors’, the only pinch is of the uniquely distinct styles each one of us possess. So, lets not talk about how the family chariot moves on with all the wheels pointing in the ten directions, so anchored as a rock, just as you! So, now you know who I am. Lets proceed further..

When I was little, my mom said ‘God is watching all our actions and will punish us for our lies’. I thought ‘Let me not take a chance… I never lied’. Meantime, all my elder siblings lied and went scott-free from mom’s cane, whereas me would be decorated with long red bumps. I wondered then, ‘Why is God not punishing them?’. Gradually, the questions increased, every time i joined my hands in prayer at the small temple at home, I saw an image of you smiling away to glory. I didnt know it then, the reason for your smile, but maybe now I do! Nevertheless, I trusted you and prayed to you and begged you for a new set of crayons, a new drawing book, a new story book, a new dress, a new shoe… more quality time with my ‘ever so busy’ dad! But, you only smiled! Some answer to a little toddler’s prayer!

The toddler grew up, the prayers continued but you only smiled! I prayed, i stuggled, i worked hard to make both ends meet, while you were smiling your glorious smile! They say ‘God alone knows’, so maybe you do know, when exactly i stopped praying or rather my style of praying. Maybe, you felt bad, because you stopped smiling at the temple. But, you know what, I had begun to worship people. They were the ones running this ‘loka’, they were the real heroes, each one of them striving towards achieving their desires, while joining forces to achieve collective desires. We, the people were running the show!

But with two elder brothers living the spiritual life and me living the ‘doubtful’ life, a debate was inevitable. I was lectured about your cosmic laws and stuff. I failed miserably in the debate followed with the toughest questions, ‘Why are the successful people, always the ones who believe in themselves, believe in the power within?’, ‘Why some things never shape the way you want?’, ‘Why some street urchins go on to become major contributors to society?, etc, etc. You must have heard it in my home, if you had happened to tune in, what with my entire neighbourhood tuned in! Then, I realised who is the real hero..who is the script writer… who is the pupeteer..who is calling all the shots ??? Then I realised why you only smiled your glorious smile.

So, here I am at your doorstep, with hands joined humbly, Please forgive me, God. I will never stop praying again. I have a lot to thank for, yes, i really do. You saved me from evil, you carried me through my disbelief, you tolerated my anger, you even sent me friends who did the same! You opened a door when all others were shut on me. You are a tough coach but now i know why! So, Thank you, God and trust me there’s no sarcasm here!

Yours Gratefully,