Monday, October 27, 2014

The Domestic Air India Experience

Four years ago a lucky situation led to me taking my first air journey. It was a two hour Indigo flight from Bhubaneswar to New Delhi and I was travelling alone. Yes I was nervous. I had no clue how everything functioned in air travel and I made sure the entire journey was a memorable one. (Read about it here)

For Diwali this year I wanted to visit my grandparents in Bhubaneswar and got tickets booked in Air India. There were a few reasons for this:
One, I have earlier travelled in Indigo, Spicejet and Kingfisher and want to try the public carrier of the country this time.
Two, Air India serves free food and there is an in-flight entertainment system a.k.a. ‘television’.
Three, Air India goes from Delhi’s Terminal 3 and I wanted to explore the huge T3 (once again).

View from the waiting lounge of Terminal 3 Domestic Departure, Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi

So, a day before Diwali I was booked on the evening flight from Delhi. The common thing with domestic air travel in India and travelling on Delhi roads is that both take roughly the same time. If you drop somebody at the airport and return home, by the time you reach home 20-25 kms away enduring Delhi’s traffic, the other person has already reached their destination 1500 kms away. Keep this in mind, I left from home 4 hours prior to the scheduled departure of my flight.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Book Review: ‘God is a Gamer’ by Ravi Subramanian

Title: God is a Gamer
Author: Ravi Subramanian
Publisher: Penguin Books India
Pages: 310
Genre: Thriller
Price: Rs. 299

Reading the book:

First things first- Before reading this book, I had never read a thriller novel by an Indian writer and been superbly satisfied at the end. Nor had I read any of Ravi Subramanian’s other books which would have probably made me aware of his writing style.

All I knew about the book was that it revolved around the virtual world of ‘bitcoins’ and was the first book to do so. A blogger friend had recently termed this as the ‘best book of Ravi Subramanian yet’. And that’s it. I knew nothing else. Looking at the book and the back cover synopsis, it was not very clear what the story is about, although the tagline ‘Is revenge a crime?’ kept me wondering what kind of revenge was being talked about. I had to read to find out.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Ghar Wali Diwali Celebrations

I can hear some distinct sounds of bursting of crackers somewhere in the distance as I sit to write this entry. Diwali is still a few days away!

For the first time in 7 years I would be in Odisha for Diwali. But I somehow am sure that the experience this year would be very different from how I have known Diwali since childhood.

A picture from the 2011 Diwali celebration at my colony, from my sister's albums. I was a few hundred miles away in Delhi.
Sambalpur, Early 2000s:

Two major celebrations happened each October-November in our colony. The Durga Puja (for which we usually had a 10-day long break) and just a few days later, the two day break for Diwali and Kali Puja. Both Durga and Kali idols were made and the pandals set in clear visibility from our third-floor apartment.

Friday, October 10, 2014

The Sixteenth Hour: Epilogue

A fast paced suspense thriller called 'The Sixteenth Hour' from the highly enthusiastic team members of Team 'Supernova'.

Read the previous part of the story here. To start reading the story from beginning, check the first post here.

The sun had set across the Mumbai skyline and Shekhar and Tara were perched on their drawing room couch on the 12th floor of the Rustomjee Towers watching the evening news bulletin. Roohi was cuddled in Shekhar’s lap, after hours of not knowing what had kept her parents running across the city the whole day. The little girl was even told that she would be missing school today.

“After what could be termed as a huge black letter day in modern Indian history, unexpected events now seem to be taking a closure. The Mumbai Rajdhani Express that was hijacked last evening a few minutes after starting from New Delhi, was safely brought to a stop at Mumbai Central Station today morning. The railway minister has accepted the negligence and announced that all the passengers would get refunds for their tickets within 48 hours…” the news reader said.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Chapter 25: Living a Lie

A fast paced suspense thriller called 'The Sixteenth Hour' from the highly enthusiastic team members of Team 'Supernova'.

Read the previous part of the story here. To start reading the story from beginning, check the first post here.

All that had been happening in the last few hours didn’t seem to make sense at all to Tara. With the kind of information she had recovered regarding Xombie, she expected an incident like this since many months now. But she had always thought that Sarkar was on her side. She had the Home Minister of the country in her confidence although she had been careful never to reveal the information even to him. But now it was the same man who along with their old Lonavala neighbor had plotted such a huge attack. She could only wonder who else was involved.

As she flew the helicopter over the rain washed Western Ghats, she had no clue how she was going to get the train to stop. Should she track down the train herself or did she have time to go straight to Mumbai Central station and get the authorities? With Shekhar’s face flashing across all media channels as the hijacker, she had to make sure that her husband was safe in case the train did stop.

She looked at the radar, adjusted the direction and flew towards Mumbai Central.

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