Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Season's Greetings!!

It's been a frightfully long time that I have scribbled anything in this spot. Much has happened since my last update. Term has got over with the last few weeks having knocked the wind out of the soul. Things keep getting tough I tell you. Moving on, we were down at Bath a few weeks back in case I didn't tell you earlier and it was a splendid experience. A beautiful little town! You probably could walk it from one end to the other in probably an hour or so. The day was pretty cold and foggy which did add a certain charm to the entire trip. Nevertheless a wonderful trip. I shall share the pictures on this soon enough. And as the term flew to its end, Christmas came knocking on the door. With most residents leaving for their respective homes, we had an early Christmas party here at Clayponds, which very much set the tone for the days leading up to Christmas. It was a wonderful party with more than enough to eat and drink, and music to set the feet moving. A crazy night. What it spawned off were a series of parties across town being thrown by someone or the other. Going over to friends' for a sudden dinner invitation, trying out Chinese at Chinatown and checking out the stores on Regent Street and Oxford Street as they dished out marvellous sales. Though not much of an avid shopper the sales did left me wondering about what I could possibly buy. The Christmas lighting across town was beautiful.

At Leicester Square the Christmas festivities end up with some marvellous ride which thrill you to no end. And you could still be left wanting for more and more. Finally term for over, and after few days of lazing around with friends at Clayponds, one did realise the impending doom in the form of term exams in the middle of January next year. However, I also had a vacation coming up. A week on Jersey Islands, visiting my dad's uncle. In fact, that's where I am as I type this out. A very beautiful island I must say. With the beautiful houses and long winding roads, concealed entrances all over, breathtaking bays and amazing beaches, it surely is a beautiful island. Part of the Channel Islands, Jersey is one hour by flight from Gatwick and an hour by boat from the French coast. The influence of both the cultures could be seen right across the island, perhaps mixing together to form a delectable mix of its own, which you cannot help but relish. More so about Jersey after I return to London.

On a serious note, the end of year was marred by the Mumbai siege which laid bare many a facts for India and perhaps for the world to look into. It really does make one wonder about the entire purpose of such blasted acts which probably didn't benefit anyone unless someone is too mentally imbalanced and a sadist to derive pleasure off someone else's misery/helplessness and situations similar to that!! Sad turn of events in the Indian sub-continent. One can only wait and watch as the situation unfolds there with the political stage perhaps more charged than ever.

Monday, December 22, 2008

It's Time!!

Well... Well... Well...

It's been a mighty long time since the Mumbai seige. Though it seems life has returned to normal, but deep withing I guess the hurt and anger is just waiting to surge to the surface and consume the individual, setting alight an environment of mistrust, discord and disharmony. Not exactly what one had in mind I presume!!

Despite all this one has seen candle light vigils across the globe, some went for the "free hug camapaign" with the motto of propagating a message of peace and brotherhood. Wonderful gestures all of them!! That's right gestures!! The benefits of such gestures are intangible. You can never see them the instant they happen, they take time to manifest themselves. However, tangible benefits are required too and one really cannot shy away from the fact. There are ways to go about it. The first would be to use part of your salary to support someone who needs it but has no means to it,e.g. support a child's education. All you need to do is not buy that extra pair of shoe/dress/pants/shirt that month. A thousand a month (INR) is affordable and one could sponsor a child's education with that in India. Can spare more? Don't worry the NGOs can guide you to other avenues as well. But does the buck stop there? Surely not!!

Paying for a child's education is not the end of the cycle. It's the beginning! The next step would be get involved. Trust me, it can change your world, make you look at things from a different perspective altogether. Got some old clothes which can still be worn by someone? Donate them. There are many out there who could use them. A few years ago, my uncle and aunt celebrated the first birthday of their daughter with people from an old age home (they have been actively involved with it for years now). It was a proper party with songs, cakes and a feast. The smile on the faces of those people etched a memory that would be hard to erase till I breathe, and may spawn me into spurts of activities every now and then to give back. Sometimes, it is worth giving without receiving!! :)

Step up!! Unless you start giving back to the society you live in, you cannot spawn a better place to live in. Cities would be laid siege with people who are disgruntled and probably never got the kindness and love that you have taken for granted!! Even corporate houses realise that today, resulting in a concept known as Corporate Social Responsibility.

It's time you did something instead of waiting for something to happen!!!