The answer is..

The Srirangam Temple. Well done, Chenthil & JK. Though JK wasn’t able to figure out what exactly that is, he managed to trace the location and tell that it is something north of Tiruchirapalli.

Look at the bigger picture here or here.

The blue/white strip is the Cauvery River and the dry strip that is behind the temple is Colleroon (Kollidam) river making Srirangam, an island town between the two rivers. You could see the concentric squares around the temple, which are Uthira, Chithira & Adayavalanjan streets surrounding the temple with huge walls separating the streets that were built several centuries ago, giving an example of such wonderful planning in those days. We used to live in West Adayavalanjan street – the third street from the temple in the right. The greenish areas in the right after those concentric squares used to be coconut groves in Melur Road not long ago. Six months back, when I visited the place I saw that the trees have been chopped off to be replaced with apartments. I am surprised that the place looks so green from up above. The famous “Srimaan Thathachariar Mango Gardens” (PVS has put up a post on that recently) have also been turned into concrete jungle now.

The blue line that crosses Cauvery, almost touches the edge of the Srirangam streets in the East and then crosses Colleroon is the train line towards Chennai. You could easily see that Colleroon bridge is longer than Cauvery. The blue line running alongside Cauvery (in the South) must either be the train line towards Karur or the Karur Road from Trichy. In that place, both the road & rail lines used to run parallely for quite a long distance. Thankfully, the satellite image has been taken at a time when Cauvery had water flowing.

As everyone now knows, I used Google Earth to pull up this image and the application is simply awesome. Thanks JK for letting me know about that.

Exchange of Ideas

Remember the live telecast of cricket matches in Doordarshan days? There would only be final few overs left in the match and it would be all tensed up when the live telecast would end because the News can’t be shifted to some other slot. Sometimes, they would interrupt to announce that the rest of the match would be telecast in Channel 2 leaving the non-metro viewers high & dry. Seems that there has been some exchange of ideas between BBC & Doordarshan. Yesterday, as Federer & Ferrero were breaking each other’s serve as the score read 6-6 in the third set, BBC anchor appeared to announce that the highlights of the match would be telecast later and they were sorry to cut short the match. Grrrr…

Completely off the topic, there is a new website giving consumer advice in UK, specially for the likes of me & Guru. 🙂

Weird Problems

I had one of the weird problems over the weekend. Somehow, my bathroom door got locked from inside. It is a kind of door that you could lock only from inside (anyway, whats the purpose of locking someone inside the loo?). I don’t know how it happened, but it happened. Perhaps, I had banged the door shut when I came out of the loo previous time that it got locked on the impact. You know the kind of circumstances, when you want to use the room and find that it is beyond your reach. Well, you could control the anger, but… you know what I mean, right? I knocked the door hysterically as if some one is inside. I wished that I had some super human strength like movie heroes that when I bang on the door, it breaks open. I didn’t care about the consequences of breaking the door, as my only concern was to open it somehow. Heck.. I didn’t even know whom to call for breaking the door open – a carpenter or plumber, if only someone is available for work on a Sunday. God, why do such things happen only to me?

Realising that my situation is getting more & more unenviable with every passing minute, I realised that I should stay calm and do something. In these circumstances, it is easier said than done. There was a knob outside the door and my only hope was to somehow remove the knob and unlock it. Damn those super-strong knobs that are good enough for a safe than for a loo. I considered hitting the knob with all my strength using a hammer, but again, I got reminded about the ‘staying calm’ stuff. At last, I saw the light at the end of the tunnel… err.. it was a little hole in the knob, which offered me a glimmer of hope. Though I couldn’t see anything inside through that hole, I took a screwdriver and without even an idea of whether there is anything to unscrew, I went about the process when I heard a ‘cluck’ sound. Ah.. that sounded familiar.. Yes, the door got unlocked without the need to break it open. Oooooff.. Mission accomplished. Didn’t know that such kind of problems exist in the world.

Saving few more £s..

If you are in UK and travel in National Express coaches, this piece of info would be useful to you.

Bus fare in UK is calculated on taking to account the distance between two points as the crow flies rather than the distance actually travelled.

For example, the distance between Bournemouth & Heathrow Airport is 94 miles and the cost of an Open dated return ticket is £25.50. But the distance between Bournemouth & Reading is 76 miles and the cost of an Open dated return ticket is £18.50. Now, consider this. As there is no direct coach service between Bournemouth & Reading, even if we buy a ticket between these 2 points, one would have to travel to Heathrow and take another coach to Reading. So, when I want to travel to Heathrow, I buy a ticket to Reading and don’t use the second leg of the journey. That saves me £7 per journey. Not bad at all.

I blogged about this about 2 years back using a different example and thought National Express would soon plug this loophole. They haven’t yet. Good for us! 🙂

Wimbledon

Watched the live telecast of second round match of the Wimbledon Championships between Sania Mirza & Svetlana Kuznetsova. What a match it was. Until the final game, the match was unpredictable and its a very long time since I watched such a tennis match. 2 hours very well spent. It is not very often you get to watch an Indian play in those famous lawns.

BBC commentators were going gaga about Sania and went on to say that she would soon be in the top 25 rankings, if she carries on the way she does now. Wonder what they would have said if Sania’s opponent had been a British lass. This is the first time I have watched Sania in TV and she does look pretty. Period. For people (some bloggers I don’t remember) who were crowning her as a beauty queen only next to Aish, I have one question: Where are you guys from? Afghanistan??

In the meanwhile, I did something which I seldom do. Normally, I hate entering into TV/Internet lucky dip competitions, though I have done that twice before and to my surprise – got a Swiss watch once (ahem!) and tickets to watch the movie ‘Dum Dum Dum’ along with actor Madhavan, which I never used. But, BBC’s prize of two tickets for the Women’s Finals next Saturday was too tempting and I gave in. I have watched a match in Centre Court before along with my friend – a rain curtailed mixed doubles one involving Mahesh Bhupathi in 2001. But watching that Sharapova girl play is a different one altogether.

Parivaar

Four years back, Vinayak Lohani – an alumnus of prestigious IIT – Kharagpur was working with Infosys. He then joined another prestigious educational institution, IIM – Kolkatta. He was on the threshold of a great career in the corporate sector when he simply gave up that to take up the path, which many dare to tread. After walking through the slums & the red-light areas of Kolkatta, he formed Parivaar – a shelter for the homeless and abandoned children. I feel that it really takes a lot to go that way and do something remarkable.

In a short period of time since its inception, Parivaar has won the trust of lot of people who generously contribute. Almost 95% of the resources of Parivaar come through individuals. They are looking forward to admit about 50 more children into Parivaar in the next 3 months and are looking out for donors who could support them through their Support A Child (SAC) Scheme, whose details are available at this URL www.parivaar.org/come.shtml. Do check out to see whether you can give your hand. Or spread the word at least.

Excerpt from an IIM-C newsletter featuring Vinayak Lohani.

Parivaar helps rehabilitate orphans, street children and children of sex workers in Kolkata. Ask Vinayak why he chose Parivaar over career after IIM Calcutta, he retorts, “Are all of us sure why we want to do a particular thing and not anything else? I wonder if it really is. Societal norms set your path and give you limited choices. Like others, I too was following what was the norm — first engineering, a one-year stint at Infosys and then management. But now, looking back, I do consider myself a misfit in the IIM environment.”

It was not an easy decision. “I was discouraged by friends and well-wishers from pursuing this idea. Some did not take me seriously. But honestly speaking, there was something in me that was impelling me to do what I wanted to do,” recalls Vinayak. And so started Parivaar.

Hats off to you, Vinayak.

Positives

I have got my PC back, up & running. The hard disk has been formatted and is now loaded with all the anti-spy ware, anti-virus software available in the market. Whether, they are effective or not, I feel a bit more secure. As I have got rid off all the stupid tools that I had installed over the years but never used it, the system appears to run fast. Having experienced the problems of using a dial-up connection, I would soon be subscribing to a Broadband service as well. See, how many positives on being bit by dialler virus. The glass is always half full.

HOT!

It was a hot weekend, in every sense of the word. Though the temp was only around 28 degree C, it was so bloody hot that it created a burning sensation all over, when I went out. I was out in the street for about 45 minutes and even got skin rashes. Despite taking a cold-water bath and sitting near the fan, the irritation didn’t subside. Chennai’s 42 degrees is bad, but this one was more difficult to manage.

To be as a Lakshmipathy in a coastal town like Bournemouth on a hot weekend is a .. err.. well.. hmm.. (in the interests of MY safety, let me leave it as such).

Few things..

– Found one interesting blog/site on India Economic Growth & Development. Basically, its a collection of info from various feeds, but its quite easy to see them all at one page. Check it out, if interested.

– I would like to have MP3s of the songs from Malayalam films – Bharatham & His Highness Abdullah. Could any one point me to the right site from where I can download all the songs of the above films. I googled, but the results lead me into vicious circles. Thanks in advance.

– Thanks to increased traffic, my site is in the brink of exceeding its bandwidth quota of 1 GB for this calendar month. In the past, my site had never utilised more than 60% of the bandwidth quota for the entire month. While I would make all efforts to keep it up & running (as if the entire world depends on this site), if you find an odd holding page all of a sudden, you know the reason.