Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Adventure of Sherlock Holmes

Placeholder post.
Will be written, once the complete series is read.

Destination UK - Part II

This is a photo Travelogue.(as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words)

Flick Slideshow
Creative Commons : Some rights reserved.

Hat Tip: If you are added as a friend in my flickr profile, you will see some bonus snaps..

Comments are welcome.


Air India - The worst flying experience of my life

By the grace of God and good wishes of my dear friends and family, I had completed my journey to London and back safely, despite otherwise intentions of our national carrier Air India.

It all started, on a bright and sunny day of 31st September. It was my first International flight and I have been in many domestic routes on Frills and No-Frills services (except Air Deccan).

First shock, an old lady at the check-in counter.
Second shock, flight delayed by an hour.
Third shock, pathetic in flight service.

However, the story doesn't end there. While returning, as wished by our dear office traveldesk, I was again booked on Air India. The flight was scheduled to depart at 2055. So being cautious, I reached the Zone F, terminal 3 of Heathrow by 1800. Now this means I was there well three hours before the departure.

Fourth Shock, A long serpentine Queue to get in to the Check In Queue.
Fifth Shock, The Queue for Queue took nearly two hours for me to clear up.
Sixth Shock, The Queue took nearly forty minutes for me to clear up.
Seventh Shock, There was a huge crowd waiting at the lounge to get into the plane. gosh.. it wasn't looking like an international airport, It was like a train station,
Eigth shock, no blame to Air India, the weather was turbulent so for sleep all I could had was two short naps.

My Dear Traveldesk, please never book me again on Air India..

N73 - My new companion

After a four year long courtship with my Samsung C 100 cellphone, I finally ditched it and bought myself a new Nokia N73.

I bought it from Carphone Warehouse in London. Beside the updated firmware, I also bought a 2GB miniSD card to store all those high-res 3.2 mp images and 128kbps audio mp3 files.

I have completed a successful transition from my old phone to new phone.. by manually transferring all the contacts and messages. yes, I said manually, because C100 only has Infrared connectivity which also doesn't seem to work..

Anyways, looking forward for another good long relationship.

Iceman is finally a champion

For last three years, I have been supporting Kimi Raikkonen for F1 drivers championship. And finally the moment has arrived. In a nail biting season finale at Interlagos (it is a beautiful circuit and is my 3rd favorite, Belgium and Suzuka being the first two), Kimi won the race and as Alonso failed to finish in top two and Hamilton in top six, Kimi won the championship by a huge margin of "one" championship point. Mclaren which was claiming of driver equality can now sheepishly boast of equal points of Alonso and Hamilton. Unfortunately, I couldn't watch this grandeur race as I was flying back to India.

Finally the time to celebrate.

P.S. We must not forget the contribution of local hero Felipe Massa who held onto second place which ensured a Ferrari one-two finish.

P.P.S. Watch out for Hamilton in the next season, he will surely continue his momentum.

Southall - Mini India

If you are in London and/or If you are an Indian, you must visit Southall once during your travel. It will help you get rid of any homesickness. The place is a hybrid of London and India. You will find BMWs, Mercs and Jaguars running on the road while there will be Gurudwaras, Temples and Mosques.. and it also has ICICI Bank and SBI Bank..

It is the only station I saw which doesn't have a ticket validating machine and surprisingly the station name is also inscribed in Gurumukhi on the platforms..

And it is the best place to have some decent Indian food if you can't have that bland English food every time. For my Jain friends, this place also has some purely veg restaurants which is a rarety in London.

Friends - Across the world

In my recent trip to London, I have realized one thing; You can't enjoy a new place alone. It is always great to have few good friends along with you. And I am blessed that Bhavin, Divyanka and Sagar too were there... All this translates into that my weekends were never boring..

If I relate it to few previous instances, when I can recollect my trips to Mumbai and Bangalore and would like to use this opportunity to thank them all for being what they are to me.

Post Ideas

London travelogue - Flickr PhotoBlog

Having friends across the world
Southall - Mini India
Kimi Raikkonen - The Champion
First Onsite Experience
Air India - How not to run an airline company
My New Phone - N73
Adventure of Sherlock Holmes

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Destination UK - Part I

Dear diary
My First International Trip, my first Global Project.... Here I am sitting in London UK, writing the first part of the travelogue.

so I started on this voyage on the beautiful day of Sunday the 30th... september.. It was a morning Air India flight to London Heathrow... and luckily I got a window seat.. yippie..
hey.. no offence to anyone but Air India will be on the low ranks of beauty scale.. you know what I mean.. anyways, leave that aside..

So the flight got delayed by approximately 45 minutes and we took off at 10:45 AM.. I reached London by 03:00 PM local time. As I was travelling westward you need to adjust 04:30 hrs in total travel time. In the journey I flew over English Channel, and put my digicam to a good use. One more thing, I always use to fancy Sherlock Holmes so I bought the complete Sherlock Holmes series. I have already completed first two novels and I must say, this guy impresses.

so there I reached, in a new country at a new place for me... first thing i did was to find out from where can I get the taxi.. I found out the taxi stand and enjoyed a ride in the famous london cab. Read more about these at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hackney_carriage. We lost our way and the cab driver didn't know the final destination so it took us a while to reach my booked apartment. finally i was there..

Next day morning..
To the office...