Category Archives: Uncategorized

Rythm of life

What is it about rhythm that gets to us?

This is a thought that has been on my mind for a long time now. Rhythm soothes, excites and everything in between. Rhythm basically takes us along. Animals will pause to listen to a tune, cultures around the world have music and rhythm as an essential element.

Rhythm brings people together and in sync. How…..? Why DOES rhythm affect us so much?

I saved a life

This is a memory from a long time ago. Way before I figred out the internet beyond checking mail.

I was living in the high pastures with my herd of horses. The winter had been rough, and I was just camping out in the high altitude pastures where we leave them for the summers, supplementing their diet with some grain, to help them catch on on their health a bit faster.

The days were pretty idle. Feeding the horses a couple of times a day was
no pain – they used to come happily enough for the treat. Beyond that…. not much to do. Cooking, enjoying the paradise I was living in, early to bed, early to rise.

Occupation came in an unexpected way. A gaddi camp was passing by, planning to camp a little higher than the pasture we were in. I recognised the shepherd, and invited him for a cup of tea. When he saw me, he decided to camp near our camp itself.

Over a cup of tea, I realized why.

A filly of his, had been attacked by a bear a week ago, and had been hurt badly. Originally, believing that she would die anyway, he hadn’t taken her to a vet. But she hadn’t yet died. She was in a bad way, with her wounds infected, and was struggling to keep up with the moving camp, to follow her mother. This was creating a problem, as the mare used to keep waiting for her, and slowing the caravan.

I had already gained a solid reputation as an animal lover, and my animals were often a point of interet for local livestock owners for the glowing condition I used to maintain them in. Plus, I was gaining a reputation as an enthusiastic “onofficial vet” from the knowledge of animal medicine I used to gather for the well-being of my horses in a land where vets were not easily available, and often very far from the place of need.

He wanted me to take a llook at the filly and see if there was any hope
for her, as well as see if she could be put down, if there wasn’t. I refused flat out to put her down, as I am not of the opinion that animals should be killed when they are fighting to recover. Plus I lacked the kind of knowledge and equipment it would take to put her down. I agreed to take a look and see what I could do for her.

We went out into the pasture and unloaded his horses to set up camp and then look for the filly. She was in a bad way. She was sleeping, exhausted at the end of the pasture without even coming to join the herd, once she saw that they had halted.

We got her up and brought her up to my tent and tied her in front of it. I started to take a goot look at her and see what it was that I was up against.

She was a beautiful, black filly. Three months old. lovely body structure – she would have made a fine mare when she grew up, if she survived this scenario. Her rump and neck was covered with deep gashes from the bear’s claws, and a week of neglect had allowed infection to settle in. Most of the gashes had developed pus, and a couple had maggots in them. My whole being recoiled at the thought of having to clean up this mess.

If I had to save this filly, I had to do it, no matter how repulsive it was. I felt a surge of anger at the shepherd for neglecting her treatment like that, and vented my fury in choice words, yelling at him and his wife for being callous to the very animals that made their livelihood possible.

The filly stood there shivering from the early morning air and her exhaustion.

I made the couple promise to rest in the pasture for at least a week, before I would touch the filly – it was pointless to begin something, if it wouldn’t be sustained. As an incentive, I praised the quality of
the filly, and asserted that she would become a very valuable animal and bring him good money and work very well, if she was helped to recover. This seemed to strike a note of interest.

I had some anitbiotic injections in my animal first-aid kit. I gave her a shot. She hardly noticed. Then I knew, that I had to get over my nausea and actually deal with those wounds, and took a look at my medical supplies. They were minimal. The anti-septic I had, would hardly deal with half the wounds she had before running out. The same with the creams. Now what? I shoved the supplies back into my sack, and kept only the bottle of phenyl. The rest would have to be home remidies (which was what I preferred in any case).

I made a strong solution of tea in a huge pot and used that to clean the wounds. Yes, I just plunged in, and cleaned them all thoroughly, pus, maggots and all, till the flesh showed clean. Some of the deeper wounds still harboured maggots – of that, I was sure, so I used some gauze soaked in phenyle on them to dress them. On the rest, I applied a light film of honey and stuffed them full with crushed garlic.

All done, I walked away from the tent area and puked.

The evening saw a repeat performance. On the next day, the maggot wounds were clean too, and they received the honey and garlic treatment, and by that evening, some of the lighter cuts had begun to heal, and the filly was acting more interested in life, and giving me trouble to catch for treatment :) But she seemed to understand that I was trying to help, so she flinched and nudged with her nose, if it hurt, but never tried to kick at me or hurt me in any way.

After that, I taught the couple how to do what I was doing, and told them that they would have to repeat this till ALL the wounds were healed, and that the filly could probably begin walking in a day or two.

They seemed to have got the point, and the two days were uneventful – so to say (not counting one of my fillies who seemed to be jealous of all the
attention this one was getting)

The time was up, and the gaddi camp moved on, and the filly became another memory, until a few years later, when I ran across the same gaddi again. There was a beautiful mare in his herd – the one I had treated. I recognised her instantly
and was happy for her. The couple put camp once more, to spend some time with me, and that evening, I was invited to a special dinner, where they thanked me with tears in their eyes for saving their beautiful mare.

Their animals also looked better cared for, since the last time. I was happy, that things had worked out well, and that they had developed some love and concern for the living factors in their “business”

Behavioural consulting and big advice

Ugh. I think it is an occupational hazard for a consultant to feel obligated to have a say on everything, regardless of how inane it sounds. The more broke the consultant, the more desperate he is to say something, anything, as advice. I found this article on CiteMan.

Overcoming Office irritations

My response to this was of such magnitude, that I thought comments wouldn’t suffice, and dragged the whole thing here.

The article opens with seeming to be about employees being unlucky in their employers and suffering from an unhappy work life. Ok, so far, so good. Looks like we have a subject.

Then, we get into generalities about the employers practices and how they are not all bad and also say, “they will definitely not turn ones workplace a place where one wants to be for a long time“!!!???!!! Does that really mean that the employer will want to leave?

Then the whole article does a nose dive and turns into that “ten tips for career success” tone, with a whole load of advice given without any qualification of circumstance whatsoever. What is happening?

We have “An employee must get himself assigned to a project.” Come again? Do employers really leave employees idling around until they get themselves assigned somewhere? Why work at all? Just sit around and enjoy the salary. Then “An employee can tell the employer that to keep ahead of competitors he wants to do research and find out the need of customers and solution to solve their problems. This will give a chance to step out and speak to people and the employee can interact with people on line or simply get busy on the telephone or go and meet them.” No comments.

And, hold-your-breath “Sometimes it is just not the day when one feels like going to work. If that’s the case and if ones work permits then all one has to do is work from home. Do the work in the same fashion as watching TV or play with ones child and send in reports twice in a day. If ones boss resists, explain that this style of working is helping him get the work done efficiently and could not attend work because of minor health problem.” Have I missed something about the corporate world completely? Is being a well taken care of employee about working from home if one doesn’t feel likegoing to work? Does the author realize how condescending it sounds to be explaining to a boss “resisting” this working from home thing? Particularly when speaking of efficiency as the explanation, while doing the work like watching TV or playing with a kid – as in, not with any major effort or concentration?

I’m not continuing with this nonsense, because I just realize I’m copying almost the entire article – each sentence is a masterpiece of “teenager-playing-dream-consultant”, and I just suggest you hop over to the article to believe it.

Is this a training article or what? It sounds more like something from Cosmopolitan – “Ten things to do when you’re bored at work

It is really a pity there is no author here to quote, but the link leads to the CiteHR. Honestly, I would have expected far better from an HR site, but that just goes to show how the better consultants mint money with competition like this.

I have news for you, Mr. Author, whoever you are. If the employee can genuinely think of working from home, opting in for projects when he feels like it, exchange assignments in the name of multitasking and do any of the many of the things you recommend, it is the employer, not the employee that is unfortunate.

I have just one reply to any whining employee following this nonsense, and even more to the “trainer” who wrote this – If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Lovely posts, rotten packaging

I was scavenging for ideas to use in my next youth programme, and found a wealth of them on blogs. I think I’m developing an affinity for blogs. Regular posts, inspiring ideas….. some people have a talent for looking for the unusual and thought provoking in routine life.

It is sad to see that blogging seems to have a bad effect on careful writing though. Is it only me, or do many outdoor and travel blogs not maintained by professionals have terrible spelling and next to no punctuation?

I only hope this doesn’t rub off on me as I roam around reading the exciting, but messy world of blogging everything that catches the eye.

Cricket, cricket

I am not usually an avid cricket follower, but this World Cup has got me, and I am biting my nails from the suspense with the rest of India, as we wait to see if we even get into the Super 8.

Initially, it all seemed to be going well, as we won against the West Indians in the warm up match, but then, chaos struck. India lost to Bangladesh! Many would say its impossible, but then, this is cricket. India seemed to be not fully there on the field, and Bangladesh was outstanding, with the result that India is in its current situation and unsure of even qualifying for the finals.

This certainly was a completely shocking time for both India and Pakistan, when Bangladesh subdued India, without even seeming to be struggling too badly, and Ireland trounced Pakistan so badly, that it has been referred to as sent “Paking”. Both these results were totally unexpected and have shaken the status quo pretty strongly, with some devastating results for Pakistan. They are out of the Cup. Fans have been out in the street screaming for blood and chanting for death to Woolmer and Inzamam. Worse, their coach Bob “laptop” Woolmer actually died in mysterious circumstances on the next day.

I bet the Pakistanis hadn’t wanted their wishes answered so literally. Then followed a spree of resignations from Inzamam himself and others on the PCB in sheer humiliation. The final straw comes with the Jamaican police insisting that the Pakistan team cannot leave the country until the investigation of Woolmer’s death is concluded/they are cleared. Things are going really bad for the poor guys.

India wasn’t too far behind, with that bad, bad match against Bangladesh and the completely shocking defeat. The only consolation being that they aren’t out – yet. Fans in India were enraged as well, expressing their anger out on the streets, burning effigies of players and overall demonstrating how fickle they are, when the results of one match can get them screaming for the blood of those they were worshipping a couple of hours ago. Dhoni’s home being constructed in Ranchi was attakced by irate fans and armed security was immediately rushed to the homes of all players fearing similar acts.

Shame! The defeat hurt. It hurt really badly, but it shouldn’t result in an attack on belongings or the safety of players families, while they are supposed to be away fighting for the honour of their country on the field. This is pure stupidity and could sabotage the emotional well-being of our players and destroy what little chances we have of victory after being put into this tight spot after the defeat against Bangladesh.

However, Raka says that this is India’s way. India has often lost first matches and then pulled up their socks in a hurry to deliver good performances after the shock. I certainly hope it is so. India now needs to win the big one with Sri Lanka after the record breaking win against Bermuda in the next match. The Bermuda win went a long way toward healing the feelings of the fans and advertisers as well as the scores, in case it comes down to a battle of run rates.

It also depends on how Bangladesh and Sri Lanka play and what their scores read like at the end of the day.

Keeping fingers crossed and eyes glued to the screen!

Animal welfare

There is a dog in our building. He was hurt last week. Quite badly. I tried to help him, but he wouldn’t let me come near. He usually doesn’t allow anyone to come close. He’s a stray.

I called up the folks at Karuna last Friday, after trying for two days unsuccessfully. I was told that they were overloaded with requests and the van couldn’t come before Monday. I waited.

The van came on Monday night. The dog wouldn’t come close and couldn’t be cornered and caught, so the folks had to return. They came again at my request today, and I’m just back after a second unsuccessful round of catch-the-dog.

I feel so angry with the poor dog. After seeing me for over a year, he still doesn’t trust me to come to his aid. Actually, I don’t blame him. A street dog’s life is probably not a honeymoon, but still……

The Karuna guys have seen it all many times. They just asked me to make a fresh request and they could come again on the next day.

For those who don’t know what Karuna is, its an NGO committed to the animal welfare in Mumbai. If you find a horse, dog, bird, cow…. any animal that needs medical attention, or intervention, feel free to bring it to their attention, and they may be overworked, but htey will certainly come. If you have some money to spare, you might also consider donating, so that their overworked service can be extended to come to the aid of many more animals that need it.

As far as I know, they don’t have a website, but you can call them on these numbers (below) to request for services, or express your appreciation for the work they do. God knows we need people like them around. Their staff is working from early in the morning to very late at night, constantly attending to the needs of animals. You make a request, and their ambulance will come around – completely free of cost to help the animal. They care. You can see it in their actions, in their untiring efforts, and their willingness to go the extra mile to hunt for the street dog that suddenly went missing when they arrived to treat it, or even bringing their team of people to help catch it.

Do keep them in mind and keep these numbers safe for the sake of any animal you could end up helping without doing much more than a phone call:

28763856, 28761313

Please keep in mind that for every request, they will need the contact of a person in the area, who can identify the animal and be there with them when they arrive. So if you’re calling about an animal on the highway, it might be worthwhile to speak with a local shop or something and provide their contact, unless you intend to camp there until they arrive.

You can also call them for pets. They don’t charge any money, so don’t hesitate, just be there for an animal that needs it.

Well… our dog needs to wait some more I guess, but another very injured bitch came to notice just as they were leaving and they went there and treated her. So the trip was not a wasted exercise.

Stealing is tempting

I find that the internet acts as a barrier to the morals of many people. Many people who wouldn’t be causght dead stealing in their day-to-day lives steal without hesitation online.

A regular visitor here just brought it to my attention that another blog (which I will not mention here) has been steaking content from this site. She found out accidentally when she forgot the exact url (she has this site in her bookmarks at home) and tried to search for the site from some specific words she remembered in the article she wanted to access. Our site showed up as expected, but another site showed up too, with the same article.

Thinking that it was something I used for a reference, she browsed through it, to see if it was of any interest. What she found is the exact same article, copied word for word, including links in the article to other pages in the site at specific areas. The thieves didn’t even bother to pretend to cover their tracks.

Our logs here show plenty of hits coming from that site, so I’m not complaining. The articles refer to the links in a tempting way, so the thief is actually losing traffic, because people are very likely to click on those links. I’m not complaining :D
I doubt if it matters to him though.

I wonder what makes people want to steal people’s content. I freely allow anyone to use any information from this site, as long as a live link is maintained to this place. The reason is as much one of credibility, as the fact, that most of my articles and experiences are closely related to my knowledge and experiences from the very off-beat life I’ve led. It will simply sound fake if copy pasted, and the rest of the content in the site is obviously someone else.

Anyway, it doesn’t matter to me, because they can’t really steal in terms of removing content from here. This place is more important to me than some scraper who cares nothing about visitors.

Situational hazard. I shrug and move on.

Planning for what to do when I grow up

Heh. It’s a life long project. I’m 31 now, and I still don’t know what I want to become when I grow up. There are so many passions to indulge in. One life – so much to do. I’m making a note of my most wanted futures for this life time, in an attempt to get them on record. Regulars here know that this is subject to change – of course.

Yeah – so go on – yell at me for infecting your mind with these tempting little dreams and don’t blame me if you want to do these too.

  1. I want to develop a small farm. Organic farming is something I am really interested in. I plan to build a spacious home on the property, which I will be using to run programmes in as well. This home is going to be constructed with natural materials. Mostly stone and mud with some wood. Planning to make the property self-sufficient in terms of energy needs. Solar power and bio gas for cooking, heating water, light and electricity. Perhaps wind/water mills for electricity as well. Totally organic produce, which will provide for most of the food requirements of the people living here. Horses and dogs complete the picture of course.
  2. I want to become a mahaout and live a wandering life with my own elephant for at least 2 years. I don’t know much about elephants, but I’m a willing and hard worker, not to mention experience with other animals and a sharp brain. I will learn.
  3. I want to raise my kid away from the stereotypical city attitude. Living in the city is fine, but there is a whole world to explore, and chips are not the tastiest food on the planet, television and films are not the best source of entertainment, and having fun need not always be noisy. I’d like my child to learn the value of living straight from the heart. The importance of running full power behind dreams that we are sure about. Yeah I know I don’t have a child yet, but that is a matter of time.
  4. I want to put my memories on record. I’ve had some incredible experiences in my life, and am constantly advised by friends and family to write a book about them. I will. I don’t know how fascinating it will be, but I dare say its not going to be something that can be put down easily.
  5. I want to do something really nice for the environment. It could be in the form of creating awareness of environmentally friendly options and responsibilities in far flung regions, or it could be working in a forest department to help conserve the resources and protect the animals or it could be something I haven’t thought about yet. But I will do it.
  6. I want to get people tempted by solar cooking. Its really easy to build a solar cooker and it works to save a lot of money, natural resources, energy and effort. So why not. For those who don’t know, solar cooking uses heat from the sun to cook food. It is slow cooking, so the food doesn’t char and burn, and the utensils are really easy to clean quickly. The slow cooking retains most of the taste of the food and makes it really delicious. You can put food to cook and skip off to do your own thing for a couple of hours without haunting the kitchen or worrying about it boiling over, burning, or setting fire to something. You save electricity / gas / kerosene / wood / whatever you use for cooking. An efficient solar cooker is really cheap and quick to make, so if you need to cook more, you can simply make one or two more cookers. They can store flat and hardly take space when not in use. They can double up as a fridge at night (reversing the cooking process). If it gets old, you throw it out and make a new one, without worrying about the expenses. Tempting – isn’t it?

So much for now, but stay tuned to this page. I’m bound to drop in and make additions and revisions.

A filly injured by a bear was saved by love and care

This is a memory from a long time ago. Way before I figured out the internet beyond checking mail. This is a time when I was a nomadic horsewoman in the Himalaya.
I was living in the high pastures of the Kullu valley with my herd of horses. We were in the pastures below the Hampta Pass – about a 6 hour walk from Manali. The winter had been rough, and we were just camping out in the high altitude pastures where we leave them for the summers, supplementing their diet with some grain, to help them catch on on their health a bit faster.

What a place to be in! We were camped in the meadows at Juara. Alpine meadows – the air is crisp, the water is crystal clear and flows right through the pasture. A few empty stone structures that would later become nomadic tea stalls plus camps of herb gatherers dotted the scene, with sheer black cliffs rising on both sides in stark contrast with the lush comfort of the place. A place straight from some fantasy tale. Once could believe some nature spirits living here, particularly on moonlit nights, when the scene goes black and white, with the moonlight strong enough in places to register come colour. What a life – the horses living free around me, prancing with their improving condition. Pye, my bitch, by my side and the sounds of the stream for company.

The days were pretty idle. Feeding the horses a couple of times a day was no pain – they used to come happily enough for the treat. Beyond that…. not much to do. Cooking, enjoying the paradise I was living in, early to bed, early to rise. Perhaps an occasional visit to Sethan – the last village on this route, and the only fully Buddhist village in the entire Kullu valley, where my god-family lived. A timeless idyll.

Occupation came in an unexpected way. A gaddi camp was passing by, planning to camp a little higher than the pasture we were in. I recognised the shepherd, and invited him for a cup of tea. When he saw me, he decided to camp near our camp itself.

Over a cup of tea, I realized why.

A filly of his, had been attacked by a bear a week ago, and had been hurt badly. Originally, believing that she would die anyway, he hadn’t taken her to a vet. But she hadn’t yet died. She was in a bad way, with her wounds infected, and was struggling to keep up with the moving camp, to follow her mother. This was creating a problem, as the mare used to keep waiting for her, and slowing the caravan.

I had already gained a solid reputation as an animal lover, and my animals were often a point of interet for local livestock owners for the glowing condition I used to maintain them in. Plus, I was gaining a reputation as an enthusiastic “unofficial vet” from the knowledge of animal medicine I used to gather for the well-being of my horses in a land where vets were not easily available, and often very far from the place of need.

He wanted me to take a look at the filly and see if there was any hope for her, as well as see if she could be put down, if there wasn’t. I refused flat out to put her down, as I am not of the opinion that animals should be killed when they are fighting to recover. Plus I lacked the kind of knowledge and equipment it would take to put her down. I agreed to take a look and see what I could do for her.

We went out into the pasture and unloaded his horses to set up camp and then look for the filly. She was in a bad way. She was sleeping, exhausted at the end of the pasture without even coming to join the herd, once she saw that they had halted.

We got her up and brought her up to my tent and tied her in front of it. I started to take a good look at her and see what it was that I was up against.

She was a beautiful, black filly. Three months old, lovely conformation – she would have made a fine mare when she grew up, if she survived this scenario. Her rump and neck was covered with deep gashes from the bear’s claws, and a week of neglect had allowed infection to settle in. Most of the gashes had developed pus, and a couple had maggots in them. My whole being recoiled at the thought of having to clean up this mess.

If I had to save this filly, I had to do it, no matter how repulsive it was. I felt a surge of anger at the shepherd for neglecting her treatment like that, and vented my fury in choice words, yelling at him and his wife for being callous to the very animals that made their livelihood possible.

The filly stood there shivering from the early morning air and her exhaustion.

I made the couple promise to rest in the pasture for at least a week, before I would touch the filly – it was pointless to begin something, if it wouldn’t be sustained. As an incentive, I praised the quality of the filly, and asserted that she would become a very valuable animal and bring him good money and work very well, if she was helped to recover. This seemed to strike a note of interest.

I had some anitbiotic injections in my animal first-aid kit. I gave her a shot. She hardly noticed. Then I knew, that I had to get over my nausea and actually deal with those wounds, and took a look at my medical supplies. They were minimal. The anti-septic I had, would hardly deal with half the wounds she had before running out. The same with the creams. Now what? I shoved the supplies back into my sack, and kept only the bottle of phenyl. The rest would have to be home remidies (which was what I preferred in any case).

I made a strong solution of tea in a huge pot and used that to clean the wounds. Yes, I just plunged in, and cleaned them all thoroughly, pus, maggots and all, till the flesh showed clean. Some of the deeper wounds still harboured maggots – of that, I was sure, so I used some gauze soaked in phenyle on them to dress them. On the rest, I applied a light film of honey and stuffed them full with crushed garlic.

All done, I walked away from the tent area and puked.

The evening saw a repeat performance. On the next day, the maggot wounds were clean too, and they received the honey and garlic treatment, and by that evening, some of the lighter cuts had begun to heal, and the filly was acting more interested in life, and giving me trouble to catch for treatment :) But she seemed to understand that I was trying to help, so she flinched and nudged with her nose, if it hurt, but never tried to kick at me or hurt me in any way.

After that, I taught the couple how to do what I was doing, and told them that they would have to repeat this till ALL the wounds were healed, and that the filly could probably begin walking in a day or two.

They seemed to have got the point, and the two days were uneventful – so to say (not counting one of my fillies who seemed to be jealous of all the attention this one was getting)

The time was up, and the gaddi camp moved on, and the filly became another memory, until a few years later, when I ran across the same gaddi again. There was a beautiful mare in his herd – the one I had treated. I recognised her instantly and was happy for her. The couple put camp once more, to spend some time with me, and that evening, I was invited to a special dinner, where they thanked me with tears in their eyes for saving their beautiful mare.

Their animals also looked better cared for, since the last time. I was happy, that things had worked out well, and that they had developed some love and concern for the living factors in their “business”

Guessing a writer’s gender

I came across an interesting page that compares a piece of writing with an algorithm based on study of the differences of usage of language between the two sexes. This study can be found here. Curiosity is a virtue, or so I thought and promptly proceed to paste in a few articles from various areas of this site into the “genie” and see the results.

My results hit male as often as female. Is it that my writing style is masculine or that the genie is wrong? As far as I know, I’m female :P

The paper is quite interesting, and explains the findings from study of various samples and the differences the statistics bring out. Some differences are that females are more “involved, while males are more “informational”. This link to the genie puts these findings into a form, that you can submit writing into and have it see how the your writing reads out.

With a name like Vidyut, many people already confuse me to be male (all other Vidyuts I know of are male). Perhaps this is another thing that may be adding to the confusion?

Can’t say. Definitely worth exploring.

I often find behavioural differences between males and females, as well as differences in thinking styles. I find women more expressive and quick to reach out, while men often seem to be more into doing stuff, but not talking much about it, unles it is well within comfort zones. Women are quick to react to new events and try out new stuff, while men fare better in terms of consistency.

And so on…. but I’d better not bore people with unresearched findings. I’m just tickled about someone going to these extents to document the differences.

Comments and opinions welcome!