Friday, July 23, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
A VISIT TO SONARUNDI
I visited a small village named Erera during January,2007 ...... this was my first visit to a small place without any official bindings in many years.It is near a station called Salar in Murshidabad district.The village is predominantly inhabitated by agriculturists - the land owners and the peasants.
I stayed at Erera for two days and two nights.The last place where my host took me on the 1st day was Sonarundi.It is at the border of districts Burdwan and Murshidabad, 5 km from the place where I was put up .... may be 17/18 km from Katwa , a big and quite well known town in the Burdwan district and on the confluence of the Ganges and Ajay rivers.
TRIPS TO SONARUNDI :
(On LH, a view of the once-magnificent Arch of the Entrance)
DESTINATION SONARUNDI :
If one plans to travel by train and buses from Calcutta , there can be two alternatives .
- One can go to Burdwan by train, take a Burdwan-Baharampur bus and get down at Sonarundi.This trip will take upto 90 minutes.
- At the time of returning, one has to change buses at Pachindi to visit Uddharanpurer Ghat on the Ganges and Shankhai Ghat at the confluence of the Ganges and Ajay river.These are small distances which can be covered on foot . The ferry-ride across the confluence in a bright afternoon is a trip one must enjoy. On the other side of the ferry-ghat,one can take a rickshaw to the market of Katwa town, relish his/her pick of the choicest sweets available from the neat eateries and then take a train to Calcutta.
- The other way is to start from Katwa , cross the confluence to Shankhai Ghat and follow the reverse of the bus journey mentioned above.Once back to Burdwan, there will be lots of trains to take to Calcutta.
( Uddharanpurer Ghat on the Ganges )
( While I was standing at the Sankhai Ferry Ghat)
NOTE : for details regarding location, please view :
from Pune, summer 2004.
Knight at my friend's residence at Tollygunge.
Knight our constant companion :
at Bakreswar, March, 2005
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Moumita suggested if the Reception can be arranged in a lawn .Fortunately, we located a lawn quite close to our Flat @ Parnasree.This lawn in a premises called 'Daga Vatika' suited us to a 'T'.It was half-a-kilometer away, close to Behala Airport and adequate for the 300 guests we planned to invite.The few persons who went with us to check if the lawn is good enough came out satisfied at our selection.
After this easy task was over. Ruby started the lengthy process of getting ready the dresses everyone of our and the extended families would wear on the evening of Reception. In all, she designed more than a dozen dresses for that evening, each of which drew admiring attention of the guests.
Hurray! to Liaqat whose associates did a wonderful job for us.
Surath landed in Calcutta on 5/12/2009 and took over the responsibility of the balance work to be done for the evening of the Reception and formalities of gift exchanges . He single-handedly tackled decoration of the lawn and the Reception Hall and led the running around during exchange of gifts between the families of the bride and groom.He was in the party that went to accompany the bride and the groom to our Flat from the bride's residence on the afternoon before Reception, managing the activities of decoration on phone . Surath also captured video and still photographs of the occasion which fill up 16 GB of my HDD.
' Thank you' Surath for managing all these activities without loosing your cool.
Surath's fiancee, Ritika was always available for discussion and video chat with Ruby regarding the dress design phase and kept up the tempo. This was her 2nd visit to our place in Calcutta. She handled two major responsibilities with elan . First was : carrying gifts for Moumita's family, together with Surath and a contingent of US/Indian friends, to her place and representing our family .Second was : looking after the guests during the Reception. Her demeanour earned a lot praise from our friends, immediate and extended families.
'Three Cheers' for Ritika for coming forward to share the families' responsibility of hospitality.
Our Caterer Debu , whom we 'discovered' a fortnight before the Reception, executed his responsibility of the dinners of both the marriage party and the Reception smoothly. Shall I call it like 'a hot knife in a slab of butter'.... hmm, not a very apprpriate comparison. A well-known caterer of Calcutta,"Bhoj' was thrown out because their extremely poor show in another Reception a few days ahead of our dinner. A risk we took and whoa!, it worked !
'Three cheers' for Debu for 'delivering' the long-debated menus on the buffet tables , excellent and mouth-watering in taste .
'Three cheers' for Moly and Prabhat for their co-operation in allowing our out-station guests in their vacant flat @ Parnasree. It was a great help as we could accommodate Ritika and her parents, who came all the way from Gurgaon plus some the friends of Sujash just across the road.
The marriage is an occasion which need the best from the mother of the groom and Ruby was always ready with ideas for making the occasion different by raising all the departments a notch above the usual . Design of dresses and the invitation card and packaging the gifts to the bride's family received her top attention. I do not know which were her bigger achievement - the aesthetics or the show or managing the disparate group of guests our friends and relatives,friends of Sujash and those of two extended families .... I cannot say. I would say, Ruby, what this occasion would have been if you were not so resourceful !
Not resting on her laurels, she has started planning for the surprise items for Ritika-Surath's marriage !
Monday, August 04, 2008
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Oh ! I remember the tune.
I heard it when I was sad and lonely.
Among a big crowd ............in a railway coach...
A blind beggar sang this song .
He sang about light at the end of the 'tunnel'.
I remembered the words for many years.
It was my prayer.
And ... then, I do not remember when it slipped from my memory.
To-day , I saw the sun rising over the sea.
My heart was full ,bowing down in front the Revelation.
I wanted to pray .. .
Saturday, December 22, 2007
It is about one year I retired from a 9am-7pm job. I did not feel like going back to this routine. So, I did not try hard enough for another assignment.
I have deviated from my initial plan.I never thought that I would spend time reading story -books, which was my favourite pastime when I was working.If I go back to my blog written 3 months after 'retirement', I find the following:
'A great thing will be brush up my knowledge of : Photoshop, MS Project, MINITAB & Six Sigma and learn a bit of : Coreldraw/Pagemaker, HTML (Elementary) & Web hosting, PRIMAVERA during April and September,'07.'
My time this year has gone into other areas.
- I have done good amount of reading on terracotta temples.... though not enough.In this process, I have been associated with 3 major libraries of Calcutta.Quite an enriching experience.
- I have come in contact with members of 'AISHEE', an NGO engaged in restoration of a Terracotta temple of Hooghly district.Now, I have been invited to join this group.
- I have visited numbers of Terracotta temples @ Hooghly district and Bishnupur, have taken hundreds of snaps and can start writing my 'OWN' articles.
- I have been an active member of PANIIT's 'IITians for ITIs' Project.
- I have entered into a contract with a company publishing articles on net.I have started @ the ground level out of my choice.I have now offer for shifting gear.
- I have made friends with Iftekar of calcuttawalks.com. While I have no commercial interest in 'walks', Cacuttacanvass will grow.
- I have remained active in Flickr through out the year.May be my skill for taking and editing photos has improved !
- I spent time with and for my family.
All these are activities with long time horizon.I learnt during my 40s , from lectures of and articles by Sharu Rangnekar, that a person must plan for post-retirement life.......s/he need have one or more hobbies to remain 'meaningfully occupied.I took that advice seriously though these activities are what I thought of doing much later in my life.
Publishing in net does give a person a lot of satisfaction. A person can always find friends , if he tries seriously, who enjoy similar interests and can contribute to his knowledge and ideas.I never could imagine such a pastime during my 40s!
I have regrets too.
- I lost my friend Knight, our black Lab.He was 8 1/2 years old when he left us on 12/10/07. We expected him to be around for another 1 1/2 to 2 years.A loss I am coping with.
- I have not learnt enough of Photoshop and 'Moviemaking',ie digital editing of my video shooting.
- I have lost the habit of reading novels.Night-time,my time for reading books, is now devoted to Internet.
All-in-all,this year , I have entered a different phase of life. Capital market has definitely added to my bank-balance......so I do not yet have a reason to worry in the financial front.
An enjoyable period of my autumn indeed !
Sunday, December 02, 2007
I read an article in the Calcutta edition of Times Of India , published on 1st December,2007 that a US poll finds more believe in devil than in Darwin.This article is in page 17 of TOI,taken from a report by Reuters.
A quote from the report :" It is the latest survey in the US to highlight America's deep level of religiosity,a cultural trait that sets it apart from much of the developed world.".
A lot of statistical analysis follow.Those who are interested may please read the article in the electronic version of this publication.A lot of persons surveyed believe in God and devil.I believe if we conducted a similar survey in India, similar trait would have been noticed, but,percentages would surely have been different.
I believe that at the base of such findings ,we have Man's recognition of good and bad as well as his belief in powers beyond .While,the age-old debate continues for and against these beliefs, we have seen often beliefs acquire hues of superstition and turn ugly.Sometimes ,very ugly.
Parents can help their child to grow up with a strong and positive sense of good & bad . I believe,age-old stories of Epics can attract their imagination ,at the same time, build their sense of ethics.The characters , often larger than life,are never dull to a child's mind.The characters, Krishna, Ram ,Sita, Arjun, Ravan ,Karna and Yudhisthir ...... or their Greek and Roman counterparts .....stay at the heart of the child while s/he grows and steps into the world of adolescence and adulthood.
I believe , together with funstories , cartoons and adventures, 'stories' from the age-old tales of our civilisation can be an important part of a child's reading material.A big question : are there simpler editions of these Epics for children? There are.If the parents and more importantly , children demand , there will be more. So many adults reach out to 'Gurus' for 'Yoga' and "Gita' classes..... do they help their children or grandchildren with character building with the insight they acquire ? Does a question come to their mind....had they read Mahabharata in their childhood ,they would have understood 'Gita' better? Or,they would have dealt with their lives' major questions in a more matured manner?
Dear friends,just think about my suggestion. May be you will find it worth pondering.
A child in the company of his grandma