Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Phuket – Land of Beaches & Islands


Every time as I relive the time spend at Phuket one of the most beautiful city in Thailand, it just lightens my heart with energy & joy. I believe we write our own stories and each time we think we know the end, we don't….I had only my dreams with me, I wasn't sure what the destination is going to be like, still I kept moving as I believe that the journey is the reward!!!

We took a government bus to travel from Bangkok to Phuket which is 12 hours of overnight journey.


Rain welcomed us as we reached Phuket early morning… could it get more beautiful? We shared a taxi with a lovely old French travel freak married couple.  As they shared their travel experience around Africa, India, Europe etc…. that’s when I realized how I would like to grow older with someone -experiencing life on the streets of Europe country side, adventuring in Africa , biking around the coast of Thailand & much more.


A sense of freedom when we hired a bike & reached Patong Beach which was just 10 min away from our Hotel. It started raining as we got into the beach, all you could hear is the sound of the distant waves hitting against the shore. I miss its beauty and serenity.


The bike made me feel like having wings & we drove to Kathu & Karon beach which were close by to Patong Beach. Picture perfect beach scene!!! I haven't been to any beach like these Beaches. The sand was so fine that my feet instantly buried in with each and every step I took towards to shore. The skies were so Smurf it blue and the white sand reflected the sun brightening up the beach.


But somehow I was in love with the Patong Roads rather than the beaches…

Patong’s Bangla Road has a vibrant night life which pulsates away till the wee hours of the morning. The 5 block long strip is packed to the max with bars, clubs, restaurants, and stores where Thai women sit with foreigners drinking beer and playing games. This place pulled a huge crowd just based on the amount of people sitting inside and to those standing outside for a free show.


The competition is so high within these pubs that they really work hard on the ambiance, appearance of the bar girls & the innovation they bring into the free shows. It was FiFa time & we could see street bars around a Poll with a big LCD TV screening the Live match – girls entertaining the guest with strip show & serving drinks. Great businesses model here – very less investment but high level of creativity.

Thailand is well known for its massage and spa services. Even India’s popular Spa “O2 Spa” couldn’t come any closer to the face/foot massage that the Patong street Massage shops offer at the best price.

We landed up at a very popular Super Market and we started shopping. At the end when we looked at our shopping basket, we realized we have picked up drinks, fruits, eatables lasting for a week. Our basket looked like we are getting all set to live in Patong J that’s the miracle this small city had done.


Last day in Patong was our tour to James Bond Island. After making our reservation and paying for a spot on the tour, we were picked up early in the morning from your hotel on the date of your tour and then taken to the departure point for your voyage out into Phang Na Bay. Got on the big boat, as we sailed through enjoyed the many strange, yet beautiful, limestone cliffs jutting up out of the water. There are around 45 such small islands. I had always seen these types of natural ocean formations in the movies and it was incredible to actually get to see them in person.

Sea kayak of the limestone cliffs around 2 beautiful Islands as it kept drizzling through. Thai guys were awesome hosts. They would answer any questions you had in their ‘Thai English’ or playfully joke around with the passengers. Their upbeat personalities really added positively to the trip as well.

If the name isn't enough of a giveaway James Bond Island was one of the key movie locations for the 007 movie, The Man with the Golden Gun. And of course, what happens when a place appears in a blockbuster movie? It becomes a tourist destination!
It’s a place to experience & my words will never be enough to describe it.

We reached the last island, the water was so incredibly clear and green in colour. The surface of the water was so still, so serene just slowly moving between, under, and around the cliffs…. and here one by one from our boat, went for a deep driving into the ocean for a quick swim.

The water drops falling from our hair, the wind smoothing our body & eyes filled with the reflection of beauty … our journey of Phuket ended with a desire to be back again to witness theses kind of miracles nature creates every min.


This one was the much needed break. So friends my only sharing would be – we get so busy in our daily life that we are missing out on so much....Life is short....go ahead and plan one long break – club long weekends, fake a medical leave, do whatever it takes – and slow travel. Go to a place you love, or one you know nothing about. Choose a homestay over a drab hotel room. Plan nothing else. Talk to the locals, be adventurous with your food, spend do-nothing days, and let the road show you a different way of life….like the new life I am encountered with!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A living dream – Visit to Bangkok

The dreams may well be far away, someplace where I have never been before. 
But there is something that tells me from deep down inside me that they are really somewhere. 
I don't know for sure whether to go there or not, but I was told that if I followed my heart I will be there someday…..
thus my visit to the most happening city of Thailand – Bangkok
Astonishing view from the flight as we were touching Bangkok

Airport had some very good Huawei Device Branding – felt very much at home & a place of belonging. After waiting for almost an hour for the visa – we were out of the airport at 3am. Reached our hotel & we hungry souls got our first shock when they charged us 30 Bahts for one glass of hot drinking water.
The day raised, it was the day to visit temples. Temples: Thailand is a country with a long history of Buddhism.

We decided to take the sky train as it was close by to our hotel. While buying the train tickets the expression that I received for the way I spoke English – made me realize that’s not gonna work. Thai peoples are not very well verse with speaking English, so just use key words & kill your grammar during your stay here.
Many grand temples and shrines were built and if there is only one temple you could visit in Bangkok, it would be no other than the Temple of the Emerald Buddha.  Buddha statues are the major highlights in these temples. Each statue brings out a different expression of Lord Buddha majorly “Peace” as that’s what he preached to the whole world.

You can also take a boat ride covering Wat Arun, Wat Pho & Grand Palace.
Bangkok is one of those cities which does not sleep – so our evenings used to be totally fun.

Reached Skybar – one of the very popular Roof top Restaurants:- Standing on the 84th floor open-air revolving restaurant, you really feel like you’re in heaven. Famous for the scene in The Hangover 2, this rooftop bar was probably outstanding before it became famous. After all, it is the world’s highest open-air bar - If you every want to make any of your life’s memorable moment, this is the venue for you.

As the day passed we learnt – Taxies are more affordable, bargain for everything & wherever possible, lychee are something to die for.
They say shop till you drop in Bangkok as the city is all about Designer stores, Malls & Wholesale markets. We spend ample of our time shopping in MBK, Pratunam wholesale market, Chatuchak Weekend Market & the list goes on…..guys – stay far way from entering the Platinum Mall (all the 5 floor are majorly filled with girls stuff)
Night life at Soi Cowboy, Sukhumvit Soi will make your eyes & heart go red. That’s where most of the Bangkok documentary comes from. A city which has 75% population of girls has its own reasons for making prostitution legal.

Well I can’t talk too much good about the food as being a Vegetarian I really had a tough time. But yes – if you are a meat lover you will love the street food more than the five start restaurant food you might have ever tasted in India. Veggies please carry ReadToEat, fruits, dry fruits for your survival.
One place you can’t miss visiting - Jim Thompson House: A living well architectures house of
An absconding America Man which speak about his life with pride. 
Jim who fell in love with Thai culture and devoted himself to reviving the craft of hand weaving of silk.
The Tuk-Tuk moment of truth is negotiating prices with the driver. Management people can get to test their negotiating skills here, but I totally loved the ride, it’s an experience worth having.

The traffic, the markets, the street hawkers, the grime; the food carts, the temples, the madness, the crime… it’s what makes this iconic South-East Asian capital buzz. That’s how the city “Bangkok” kept amazing me every day.
A city that taught me the value of drinking water, improvised my bargaining & negotiating skills, filled my wardrobe with lovely stuff, made me be conformable in your own skin – ความรัก & lots of love :) 

..but wait ..it does not end here…I have more stories to share in my next Phuket Post.

Friday, June 20, 2014

20 Random Questions - Fun!

It's been months that I have not blogged. I have so much to share – somehow life & work has kept me busy.  So I decided to update this post, something that did not need heavy thought, something that was fun and something that I would enjoy doing.

So here are Random Twenty Questions from Sunday Stealing.

You are most welcome to do them too and leave your links in the Sunday Stealing post.

1 Last time you had butterflies in your stomach?

When my boss called me for my appraisal meeting which was last month.

2. What was your last alcoholic beverage?

The best news is that I am back to being a teetotaller which I am really enjoying. If my memory is not that back my last drink would be Red Wine last year.

3. Who can you trust?

My Mom

4. Where was your first kiss with your current significant other?

Bangalore-Chennai highway

5. Favorite Band?

l'oreal

6. What is something you've learned about yourself recently?

Doing crazy stuff in public is making me more comfortable in my skin.

7. Do you like anyone?

I like my team members at office.

8. Do you know anyone who is engaged?

Yes, my blogger friend Syoni

9. What's your favorite number?

10. Who was the last person to make you cry?

A Friend 

11. Did you ever go to camp as a kid?

No

12. When was the last time you cried?

On my friend’s birthday i.e 6th June

13. What is one thing you miss about your past?

Boy Genius

14. What is one thing you've learned about life?

Everything that you can feel or see on this earth is temporary – even true love

15. Are you jealous of anyone?

Yes! “Sheryl Sandberg” It’s strange that the lady who inspires me the most

16. Is anyone jealous of you?

Office colleagues

17. Has a friend ever used you?

Yes!

18. Has anyone recently told you that they like you more than as a friend?

Yes!

19. Who was the last person you drove with?

Family

20. What are you looking forward to?

27th June! As I go on a short vacation to Thailand :) 


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Huawei India as principal sponsor of RCB this IPL7

The coming together of Huawei India and Royal Challenges Bangalore!

Suresh PR head of Huawei India kickstarting the partnership with Royal Challengers Bangalore's Russels Adam 


Mr Cai, CEO of Huawei India & Russel Adams, RCB with new Jersey 
RCB captain Virat Kohli showing new RCB team T-shirt with Huawei India as principal sponsor of IPL7


Me and my team from Huawei Club is getting all set to reach out to Fans with lots of fun events, IPL Tickets & RCB Huawei Goodies!


Saturday, April 12, 2014

When I was small



I'd put my arms in my
jacket and told people lost my arms

Would restart the video
game whenever I knew I was going to lose

Had that one pen with
four colors, and tried to push all the buttons at once

Waited behind a door to
scare someone, then leaving because they're taking too long to come out.

Faked being asleep, so I could be carried to bed.

Used to think that the moon followed our car

Tried to balance the switch between On/Off

Watching two drops of
rain roll down window and pretending it was a race

The only thing I had to
take care of was a school bag.

Swallowed a fruit seed I
was scared to death that a tree was going to grow in my tummy.

Closed the fridge
extremely slowly to see when the lights went off.

Walked into a room, forgot what I needed, Walked out, and then remember.

Remember when we were kids and couldn't wait to grow up and now we think why did we even grow up?

Miss those wonderful, innocent days of my life….

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Life bit away from Blogging

Firstly I deeply owe apologies to my lovely blog & to my blog subscribers. Yes! I know it’s been really long since I have updated this space. So let me try to justify this 3 months of my life away from blogging.  The following things had kept me engaged:

1.     Travelling to Delhi, Coimbatore, Cochin, Mangalore-
This was the first time I was visiting these cities. I feel in love with the Delhi cold climate, street shopping, Punjabi family culture and not to forget the variety of food that got me to gain 2Kg of weight.  Coimbatore, Cochin, and Mangalore – the tier 2 cities took me by a surprise when I passed through huge malls, Audi showrooms and wide Akers spread universities. These trips made me realize that as a marketer we are totally missing out a huge potential market which lies in the Tier 2 & Tier 3 cities.

2.     Friends destination wedding @ Jodhpur –
That was one of my dear friends wedding and how could one resist when it’s happening in the blue city of India. My trip to Jaipur & Jodhpur was incredible; pics coming soon. The Forts, Palaces, food & not to forget the shopping experience is something that I will remember for the life time.  

3.     Swimming classes –
One of my resolutions for 2014 & to summarize my training, I grade myself C. I felt like I was on moon when I learnt to float – I know it sounds crazy, but that day was the best day of the Feb month J I know how to back float…. I have a long way before I call myself a swimmer – but I don’t know how many feel that this earth is a much calm, peaceful, stress less, beautiful when you are in the water.

4.     Huawei Club expansion –
My work is my passion. “Do what u love & believe in” -That’s what I preach to all the young students I meet during my college visits.  Huawei Club is the project I have been working on for more than 8 months & trust me, never did I felt like I am working (I know my boss is reading this ;))
It’s a project where we are trying to build smart engineers & managers for tomorrow, nurture students ideas & passions, trying to bridge the gap between Academics & Corporate.
It’s a privilege of being a part of such an imitative. I get to meet young super talented students whom I can motivate & in return learn & get inspired from them.
Life @ work is beautiful.

5.     Data Science –
If you have been following my tweets off lately, it’s easier to say that Data Science is not my crush any more; I am in love with it J  Big Data is something that I am learning all by myself & every time I educate myself, my belief gets stronger, that this is the next big impactful technology in the coming years.

6.     Calm person within me-
With time I have encountered quite a bit of calmness in me. It’s so powerful – it lets you handle people & situation smartly. In this new change, I am trying to figure out if expressing yourself is a sign of weakness or strength?

Help me get some conclusion on the above question that’s on mind, till then I say goodnight to the beautiful people out there reading this.

Stay happy & safe till I come up with my new blog update. 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Let your fears be you’re Secret Santa

I am sure it’s the time when most of you’ll are playing Secret Santa with your family, friends & colleges. This game brings in lots of excitement & unbelievable surprises each time I play it!

My team at work decided to play this game in a slightly different style. We asked all the team members to write their name along with one of the fear which they want to overcome in the coming year of 2014.
The game goes like this: The Secret Santa will surprise his or her angle with gifts, acts and messages every day & will also assure that they will help in overcoming their fear. To my surprise this tweak in the game brought in some unusual realizations, fun, positivity, energy & bonding in the team.

This week was when the Secret Santa game was played. We all gathered at Pinxx, amazing dishes surrounded us. As we all 13 members were sited around a high dinner table…the fun evening was just about to begin.
We started off the game by letting members guess each other’s fears. Few guess were:
-       Fear of Manager
-       Fear of bad health
-       Fear of Girlfriends anger
-       Fear of going late home
-       Fear of talking about their age
-       Fear of expression
The thing that amazed me about this guessing game was as members went on guessing each others fear – for the first time not one but almost all were laughing over the fears. Generally we have seen people scared, shy, embarrassed when it comes to talking about fears..but this was something different. Could you believe that here was this table with bunch of young professional LOL on the topic of fear?

After all the laughter and tasting yummy deserts it was time to get serious & play the secret santa game. Each one had to talk about the angel for whom he/she is the santa..let the team guess the name, gift their angel, read out their angels fear-give a suggestion & assure that they will be around for the rest of the year helping overcome the fear.
The kind of fears that were read out:
-       Fear of losing the one they love
-       Fear of water
-       Fear of being extrovert & talking to people
-       Fear of Obesity
-       Fear of Drinking & Driving
-       Fear of Performing 

My Gift from Secret Santa
Fear is an emotion which is permanently embedded into the mind of a human being. If we remove this emotion from this world, then there would be total chaos in the society. It’s a protective instinct which shields us from dangers. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. My thought is becoming fearless isn't the point. It’s learning to control your fear, and how to be free from it.

Fear is already a part of you. Declare it and celebrate it. Infact, use it.
Inspiring: Entrepreneurs, the artists, the risk takers live with fears and make better use of it. They accept the fact that there is a danger and risk, and moving further ahead may result in crisis. But guess what? They absolutely love it! They accept failure as a part of life, and play with fears. They use this fear to conquer more ground. They are not afraid of this primitive emotion, but make it their closest friend.

Let your fear be your Secret Santa, let it surprise you each day, Embrace it! At the end you have a beautiful gift waiting for you.
Embrace the fear and feel lucky about it. If you fear something, then trust your mind, and be assured that you are onto something exciting. All you need to do is, divert the flow of energy. At the end, you will feel good about it. Give it a try, and see what happens!
Merry Christmas & Wish you all a Happy New Year!