Speed Gun

When I was driving to work this morning on a deserted road in a residential area, a man in the car travelling in the opposite direction was waving his hand up and down at every car on the road. I didn’t quite understand what he meant and carried along. For a moment, I thought he was crazy. But he wasn’t. After travelling few hundred yards, there were 2 cops standing with their speed guns pointing at the traffic. My immediate reaction was to check my speed and it was 30 mph and the speed limit on that road was exactly that. There is a chance that I might have travelled at 31 mph, but certainly not beyond. There is a general perception here that a tolerance of 10% of the limit + 2 mph is allowed, which means that you won’t be caught unless you exceed 35 mph on a road with a speed limit of 30 mph. I’ll probably know in a few days whether this perception is true or not. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Healthcare in Pakistan

I happened to interact with few Pakistani nationals recently. When the subject revolved around health care, doctors etc., I was told that the government run hospitals in Pakistan are meant only for army men and civil servants in the top level. Rest of them would have to approach the doctors who practice privately and are quite expensive. What if they are unable to pay the doctor’s fees? Pat came the reply: “If they are poor, they’ll have to suffer. There is no other go. But if you happen to have someone in the hospitals, there is an outside chance that you may be treated for free”.

Petty Milestones

On the professional front, last one year has been a terrific ride. It was this day last year, I joined GE and there have been so many proud moments to look back at and quite a few lessons to take home. Hope the ride continues to be smooth. One year is not that big a milestone in one’s career and so is 10 years in the rat race that started this week in 1996.

How does it feel like?

You are damn busy. Running around with plenty of work with lot of people around your desk. Paper & other clutter are all around your desk. The telephone rings. You reach out for the phone when you accidentally spill a mug of coffee on the table. The spilled coffee prompty gets into the open draw full of documents. The call happens to be a wrong number.

How does it feel to begin your day this way?

Well.. Annoyance is too small a word to describe how I felt. But then, looking at the positive side of it, that gave me a good chance to clear away the rubbish from my draw. Now that I have cleared them away, I don’t want this to happen again.

Mumbai Blasts

Blasts – Blood drenched people – Hospitals – Ambulances – Compensation money – Visits by politicians – Impotent statements ‘it is a cowardly attack’ ‘they will never succeed in their mission’ ‘we are united’ etc. – Spirit of Mumbaikars (bah!) – Gory colour photographs – Blame Games – Intelligence Failure – Cabinet Meetings – Red Alerts – Security Beefup.

I am getting sick of this. Not that I don’t care anymore. I do. But, when the above cycle gets repated time & again, one tend to become insensitive. The same way as the vast majority of us have become insensitive to the happenings in Jammu & Kashmir. Perhaps, it would mean a lot more when it happens right in my city or at some place where my kith & kin live. Otherwise, this 170, 7/11 or 11/7 are just some statistics. It is true that we have come to such a pass.

Red Card

It is only fair that Zinedine Zidane & Wayne Rooney were red carded. However you are provoked, whatever be the reason, irrespective of your iconic status – arrogance & violence on the field should be unacceptable. I don’t give a damn towards Rooney. He is like that and mark my words – he would face many more red cards in future. But Zidane… not that he is a saint or anything, but of all the days, why yesterday when he is on the biggest stage of all? Why would one want to do such a thing in the last 10 minutes of an illustrious career? I just couldn’t digest yesterday’s head butting (shouldn’t it be chest butting?) and that scene is getting played in my mind again and again. May be one day Zidane would write a book or something and this would be replayed by the media that time. I’ll wait for that day.

Update:

1. According to last night’s ITV report, Meterazzi told Zizou ‘I have slept with your mother and she is an Algerian wh*re’.

2. According to BBC News at Ten, Italian lip readers Meterazzi’s lip movement correspond to ‘There will be an ugly death for you & your family. Go f**k yourself’.

The former sounds to be a good reason to do what Zidane did. Albeit, he was 10 minutes early.

Heat Wave, Blogging, Indian Embassy etc

  • In the six years of my stay in UK, I have never felt the heat like this year. At around 34/35 deg C, it may not appear so hot on paper/screen, but it is so on the skin.
  • For the last few weeks, I am either on road or living at office. I was waiting to settle down to restart my blogging, but it looks like there is no such thing like settling down. So, here I begin.
  • Went to the Indian Embassy in London to apply for a new passport. Didn’t have any trouble with their service levels, but couldn’t help notice certain things..
  • – They have got a good real estate at a good location in London. But, why wouldn’t they keep their premises tidy? Should we welcome the potential visitors to India with torn carpets and overflowing bins?

    – Why can’t they have a facility where we can talk with a member of staff? Not all the information is available in the pre-recorded message.

    – Why can’t they instruct the security/man at the door not to expect every one, especially ‘foreign’ looking men to know Hindi?

    – Why do our people who are disciplined enough to form queues in the bus stop right in front of the embassy, never bother to queue up inside?