Friday, August 29, 2008

My Child's Concern

A couple of days back, I suffered a bout of tummy upset and ended up spending a night moaning and groaning in pain. My daughter came to bed after viewing "Ramayan" on the NDTV Imagine Channel. She laid down silently beside me for some time and suddenly I found her tender hands on my brows stroking gently. I was like "wow" my baby feels for me, and then she whispered in my ears , " Mom, will you be OK for my Birthday" . And I burst into laughter, forgetting the pain for a moment, as her birthday is another 12 days away. I said, of course Sweetie, I'll be fine tomorrow. Don't worry!

Well, each one of us have our priorities , isn't it? For a child, Birthday is the ultimate, important day ( for some adults too). The idea of wearing a new colour dress, distributing chocolates in school, party at home, cake and gifts make them excited. It is something that will remain etched in their memories. We as parents, try as much as possible to meet their expectations and make them happy. But sometimes their excitement does get on to the nerves, when every waking moment, a month in advance starts with , "will you do this and that...?"

A few months back, my daughter wanted a quite birthday this year, with the family dining out in a hotel of her choice and of course, cake cutting in the hotel with the Happy Birthday song playing in the background. I was very pleased with her idea, because every year, we had a grand get together for her friends, family friends and family, with cake and clothes of her choice. Though fun, it also meant a back and nerve wrecking week for me and my husband.

But her idea has now taken a twist. She tells me, we should have a grand party like we did on her previous birthdays. And her list of do s is going on and on ... Well, I am listening and what we will ultimately do to celebrate her birthday is left to guessing, including me.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Disturbing Scribbles

This morning I came to my office as usual and was waiting for the elevator. The lobby still has the India independence day decorations with small paper flags pasted around. There were two such flags pasted just above the entrance to one of the two elevators. And I saw some scribblings on them. And this is what was written on one of the Flags - " Mera Bharat Mahaan ...Sau mein se 99 Bemaan" and on the other Flag it said - " We should be proud of our poverty, our un employment, our corruption, our il tracy" (as spelled on the scribblings) . Below the scribblings was the signature of the scribbler.

I do not know why, but I was terribly disturbed. And I keep thinking, who jotted them. Was the Scribbler - a male or a female? old or young person? literate or a semi literate? Hindu, Muslim or Christian, employed or unemployed? intelligent? sadist? pessimist ? sarcastic? dejected? - WHO could it be ?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Information Galore - 7

Hyderabad Transport Information System (HTIS)

I found information on this live traffic portal, launched by the traffic police to provide information on live traffic, directions, auto fares, distance between two places in the city and the route, etc from a relevant post, on the blog Rambling with Bellur. The Transport Information System portals are available for Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi and Pune cities.

HTIS is a useful portal, though with some limitations like not identifying some well known areas while checking out the directions and also an update is required on the auto fares. The minimum auto fare in Hyderabad is Rs. 12/- (For 1.6 km) and Rs.7/- per km . The autos still run with the old meters indicating Rs.10/- as the minimum fare and refer to a revised fare chart which gives the revised fare with reference to the old fare. Do look out for the Auto Rickshaw Driver's & Trolley Union (AITUC) seal on the chart, as fake charts with enhanced auto fare are being used by many auto drivers.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Hotels in Hyderabad

My work involves a lot of interaction with the admissions' officials from US Universities. I facilitate their visits to Hyderabad to meet prospective students interested in studying at their respective Universities. They are keen to stay in a good Hotel in Hyderabad, which is safe and located at closer proximity to their meeting place. I get requests from these guests for suggestion and booking of the accommodation, keeping in view their budget and other requirements.

I have earlier recommended Hotel Green Park, Ameerpet; Taj Krishna, Banjara Hills; Hotel Marriott, Tank Bund (earlier Hotel Viceroy) and Hotel Amrutha Castle, Saifabad. Some of the guests have got hooked to these hotels and prefer to stay in them during their yearly visits. Earlier the airport was centrally located to Hyderabad and Secunderabad and all these hotels were at closer proximity to the airport. But now with the new Rajiv Gandhi International Airport located at Shamshabad, which is about 25 kms from the city of Hyderabad and with more number of visitors coming on business to this IT hub; the hotel industry is experiencing a boom time in Hyderabad. I flew into Hyderabad a couple of days ago from Kolkata and was impressed with the facilities and sleek look of the Hyderabad airport. Though the distance is bugging, the transportation facilities like Aero Express bus, Radio cabs and Taxis are a relief.

Most of the IT companies are located at Hi Tech City and Gachi Bowli, therefore many new hotels like Hotel Novotel, Hi-Tech City ; Ista Hotel & Spa, Gachi Bowli ; Hampshire Plaza Hotel and Hotel Peppermint Lakdi-ka-pul have come up in recent times. There are many web sites which provide information on Hotels in Hyderabad, but I found TravelMasti to be informative and another site which provides comprehensive information on Hotels in different parts of the world and searches multiple hotel reservation websites simultaneously, to help one find the lowest rate instantly is HotelsCombined.

Come enjoy your stay in Hyderabad - the City of Pearls and now famous as Cyberabad, for being the IT hub in India.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Information Galore - 6

Do you want to earn a degree from an educational institution in India?

If yes, always check the institutes' credentials before enrolling, with regard to the Accreditation (official recognition) which includes the validity of the courses offered by the institution, status of degree and other facilities.

For more information, log on to :

Courtesy: Advertisement "Jago Grahak Jago" issued in public interest by
Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution in The Telegraph, Calcutta, Aug 7, 2008