Friday, August 13, 2010

Never noticed when you grew up...

Let me admit the impression I have of my mother is still the the person who struggles with handling the mobile phone, no interest in knowing how the computer works, happy with handling things her way than how "modern" Mom's do. I secretly still wonder if Mom understands what a "gay" means! Yet she is someone who wants to be abreast with the latest happenings more in the people around her rather than the world at large!

However, she does pleasantly surprise me often times when she uses fancy words like "download", "sent sms" or questions to someone like "which state in the US does your child stay in?" leaving me in a state of wonderment on how did she ever get to know the states of USA! Somewhere I can see that even our parents grow even after we have outgrown from their lives. There is a sense of pride in every recent thing my parents know and I am beaming with the feeling "Not bad!"

I feel the same towards my dear Mother India today as we stand on the threshold of 63 years of independence. All said and done however shabby we are to the world in basic things, we have achieved tremendous growth which gets overshadowed by a few events or a few people all the time. If you closely observe most of the sectors have fared so well that I am beaming again "Not bad!".

There was a time about 15 years ago when in Singapore I would wonder if people in India will even get to know how a cell phone would look. I am glad my fears are totally unfounded as we can see the largest growth of cell phone industry in India with it being classified as the most basic need as of today! (That reminds me, I need to call my maid for something..)

To know how much India has grown in the last decade (being insiders we tend to take everything for granted) do look around and speak to some people who have relocated back to India after a few years. They find everything so new and so different from the time they left, there is no doubt we have changed. The last I heard was about normal schools having sick bays for children so that they could sleep. When did we hear of such things few years back? :)

This song is a befitting end to what I feel towards India! Proud to be Indian..Happy Independence day to all my fellow Indians.

Monday, June 28, 2010

It is a one way...

It was yet another not-so-good decision I took the other day ( I am getting better at taking bad decisions with age!) by deciding to drop my niece at a peak hour. Considering the fact that we stay just 15 minutes apart, I never envisaged it would take more than an hour to get there. No sooner we hit the road I knew it was the worst time to get out. I looked at the road going back home longingly and even that was packed, bumper to bumper. No choice but to just continue on the road ahead that did not look inviting at all. One bad decision and I paid for it by spoiling the rest of the evening.

The only good thing that happened was probably this thought the same principle applies to decisions made in life too. It is really a one way. Once a start has been made in a particular way you have no choice but to continue on the course, there are no 'U' turns on the roads of life. One may take detours, change the roads but never can we get back what is lost in terms of time, relationships whatever may be the case.

Finally we will really convince ourselves and a huge bandwagon of people around you who will vouch that 'All that happens is for the best' , 'It is destiny' etc but deep within I am not convinced that it is. It truly is a one way, you can either make it a run way to surge ahead or run away from the responsibility of deciding for yourself!

Friday, April 16, 2010

The lost nest

As a onslaught of the construction industry the green cover opposite our flat has been fully razed to the ground. A once upon a time "cynosure of all eyes" is another construction site now with the regular mud & grime taking the toll on us. No more lazy times sitting by the window sipping tea, watching the brilliant tree cover with a blank mind. Soon there would be houses, people who may peep in to our house or worse still, start predicting the time table of our lives!

In all this transition the worst hit creatures seem to be the birds that used to frequent the trees making their homes in the sylvan surroundings. It used to be a matter of pride to be sitting near the window and see a variety of rare birds from home. Now all I can see is a desperate search by some birds trying to find their once comfortable nest; all gone by a single stroke powered by the quest of money.

As some of my close pals come on their annual visit "to India" (it never stops amazing me how we refer to home as "India" no sooner we are out of it) I can feel deep pangs of loneliness in them too. What once was their kingdom is no more the same. The siblings are busy in their own lives, parents happy that the children are back but secretly waiting for their peaceful lives to return. Friends who once spent days with each other now suddenly look at their appointments and can spare time only for "lunch on Sunday"!.

Makes the "India" visitors wonder what was it that they were so excited about before taking the trip! Months of planning, buying gifts for all & sundry (not forgetting the ex-maid's child!), spending anxious hours packing trying to fit the world in to the allotted baggage..all this and more loses it's fizz no sooner they land. Everyone "moves on" in life but when the reality of this hits you, it does not sound as fancy I suppose.

It is only when they start talking in the past tense "in earlier days.." types that I realize it is another case of someone trying to find the lost nest...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Open source or licensed?

The world of software is interesting, for every software need of yours there are fundamentally 2 questions. Do you need open source or licensed? For the uninitiated in this world let me spell it out. Open source means free for use by the whole world and licensed means of course paying for what you need. For every licensed software there is at least an equivalent if not better flavor of free software available. Which makes me wonder who buys licensed software at all? When all & sundry is available for free who will pay for it? The truth is unnerving. There is a huge market for licensed software! Wonder of wonders a whole world out there which is not even aware of on the house freebees available.

I am tempted to apply this logic of open source versus licensed to the world today. I believe when the universe was created the development of it was free for all. One made rules just for themselves and stuck to it. Responsibility is one of the key things in open source software. If it is free for use, one takes responsibility for its maintenance & upgradaing it too! There are no written rules but it is all a part of the game and well accepted & understood. Some smart Alec somewhere decided to create countries and divided the whole world based on the license of “language” and “culture”. The result is very well seen by all of us by the use of these so called licenses. Not only are wars being fought amongst countries but also within a single country so many fights over a mode of communication! Absurdity at its best. Can someone see beyond these licenses and realize that these are all manmade? Unfortunately more and more we are getting caught in this language division web.

Relationships are another aspect that have suffered in this licensing game. With no “mine” and “thine” earlier, people had more of a “heartificial” relationship. Off late though there is more “artificial” relating. Humans created licensed marriage alright, but never stopped looking after getting married. The result is more extra marital affairs or strangers staying under a roof just because they have a license. Well, don’t get me wrong I am not professing for extra marital affairs but just wondering why they exist in the first place. Binding / forcing is the root- cause I suppose. May be I am wrong, I hope I am!

Due to these legal bindings we have courts full of warring couples who spend prime years of their lives fighting over proving the other person wrong. Imagine a free world where people lived responsibly and did not feel the necessity to belittle the other? Thanks to all this the Television industry is thriving fueling the already agitated minds with more stories to make the mind restless & eternally doubting the intentions of people around you :)

All in all I feel like going up to the guys creating more barriers in this world and showing them the open source world. It would be as good as a road without signals or traffic police. People would drive responsibly without overtaking the other. May be I am asking too much! But also may be it is time the buck needs to stop somewhere and let it start with me...