Monday, December 21, 2009

Countdown starts!!

India Calls
Infosys Calls
Family Calls
Friends Call

Everything is true but I like this Minnesota life, I like a lot things here!!

It was a mixed feeling when I saw my tickets yesterday. One day already down in my countdown, I am more upset on leaving this place than excited on going to Chennai. I am not sure how my feeling would be when I land there!! I have no clue if future will bring me here again but its really sure I will miss this place and the kind of life I enjoyed here :(

Monday, November 30, 2009

Life without Internet

I dont think I had been addicted to internet even until 3 yrs back but today more than a day away from net makes me feel I am in a new world. 3 days of no internet last week made me feel I am living in some isolated place with boredom around!! I am still wondering how I could get myself so much addicted to internet. With the long weekend keeping me away from home, its been like a good one week of being away from net and today after coming back to my laptop, I just felt like being in heaven :) I just feel most of my friends would have the same feeling as me :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

One year in Blogging

Not bad that I have been able to keep myself to blogs for an yr now :) I had always loved reading people's blog but was not really too keen to pen down few words. Ofcourse its this vacation from work that has given me the interest and time to blog. I still wish I would continue to scribble little here and there even after getting back to work!! Over this one yr, this blog has become a place of memories to me and hope it remains the same forever :)

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Manoj

I might sound crazy but these days I find my blog as a route to talk to you. Thinking back in these years, I have actually missed wishing you a lot of times on your bday. To the level I remembered your wedding day, I dint remember your bday :( Today as I remember well to wish you, your not around to take my wish. May your soul rest in peace!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Do we have fear to drive in Chennai?

I often feel 90% of people driving in Chennai drive as though they can anytime meet the dead end!! But is it never possible to have safe driving in our cities?

I wonder sometimes if our people in Chennai know the meaning for Discipline in Driving!! Its not just with the drivers but we also need good roads to drive through.  I had never done anything more than 5 or 6 hrs in car in TamilNadu. Even in the few drives of 5 hrs, we had ended up picking a taxi / mini van. I know it does not make my travel any safe. Atleast when we drive, we have some control but with the taxi drivers its worse. Even when I tell him "You can be slow, I am not in hurry" the reply we get is "எனக்கு தெரியும் மேடம், நான் பத்து வருஷமா வண்டி ஓதுநர்" My entire drive would be a mess as I would be worrying about reaching home safe and would never enjoy the drive.

When every driver fails to go by rules, why is that he is not realising its his life too in trouble? Or have we lost all importance to a human life? We hear so much every day but then can we avoid travelling? No!! Even to get to work I have so many friends travelling 1 hr in bike and car. Infact its not that only long distance can lead to traggic road accidents and death but any short drive which is rash and bad can put our life in trouble.

Very often when I read my friend's Blog, I had thought what is the use of his writting? No one is changing and follwoing rules while driving. But today as I write I can understand how he would have felt everytime he wrote. May be its more because he drives every day while I take to driving very rarely.

The day I realised I have lost my dear friend in a tragic road accident, I went so mad that I wondered if I should ever drive again? One second and one mistake, it can end a person's life!!! Road accidents and death right from school bus to youth in bikes and middle aged people in car!! Where are we heading to?

The driving I have seen in US is fun, enjoyable. The real broad roads with perfect lane maintainence, makes me drive more often than usual. I would not be partial to say its too perfect here. I can point out one place, Los Angeles where driving is not as good as it is in other parts of the country. When we drove in here I felt like being in Chennai!!  At the same time its too good in some other places here. We have taken long distance drive like 11 hrs at stretch and we never felt worried or tensed. It was all plesant and fun to have those long drives. 

Its time our people value human lifes and keep in mind all driving safety measures and follow them even if fellow drivers neglect. Ofcourse equally important is the road maintainance system. I wonder if there will ever be changes there!!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A Tribute to Manoj Krishnan

I dont know where and how to start. Going back to 2005 May third week, I met this guy introduced as someone little senior to me in work but moved from Blore DC into this new account.

Infact somethings which I have shared here are things I had failed to express to Manoj himself :(

May 2005 : We attended training together for almost a month time and trust me, I hated him so much but I enjoyed his company equally. Every time I approach him for a silly help, he will make a scene of it and I will tell myself "Never ask Manoj for help" but somehow at the same time, his presence made the place lively and fun to be :-)

Jun - Sept 2005 : We were into different projects and not much in touch for some months except occasionally he would come to my desk to irritate me as I leave for lunch :( It was in Sept 2005, he got married to his sweet Harpreet. Today I feel bad that I missed his wedding, ofcourse I did feel bad that time as well.. I had another important friend wedding to attend in Chennai and hence missed his wedding in Hyd. I still remember one of his teasing hurting me and I blasted him for the same right away!!

Oct - Dec 2005 - We were in different projects but catching up with each other for few talks now and then. Every such meeting would be one where he would let me down miserably and tease me to the worst :( But today I realise, I would never get another Manoj in my life who can play and tease me like that :(

Jan - Sept 2006 - I might not be too correct here but sometime early 2006 we happened to get into the same project. Though he was not really involved in my module, having him right in the next cubicle was both fun and pain. His presence always makes the place so lively you never feel the work to be done hard :) But then he would not spare one person in the team but tease all of us!!! I even had one experience when he teased me so much that I had felt like crying!! But then all those only made my friendship with him stronger.

Some unforgettable memories in that 8 months of work are the Vizag Araku Valley trip from Hyd as team and the dinner we all would enjoy as team.

Vizag Araku Trip - This trip got me close to Manoj and Harpreet than I ever thought. Infact after this trip, the little anger I had on him vanished and he became one of my most valued best friends with whom I felt comfortable sharing my happiness and sorrow. I infact stayed in his car most of the time as he was such a wonderful driver. But I dont know and I cant believe that its the same Car driving which has put an end to his life!!

Those dinners and small chats in office were always special to each one of us in the team. I had discussed so many important things and listened to his advices before taking my decisions. Infact from this time, he became someone so important to talk to before moving on with my decisions.

Oct 2006 till date - The last time I met him was when I left Hyd office in Sept 2006. But to me, its like I saw him yesterday. Though I moved to Chennai for work, I had been in touch with him everyday and had never felt he was miles away from me. As soon as my marriage plans were fixed, he was so excited and happy for me, ofcourse even till last month he told me, he was feeling bad for my husband Suresh.

In the last one yr, though we are so far apart, we would mail, call and chat so often that I never felt away from him. I had my last phone talk in the end of Sept with most of the conversation focussed on teasing me and irriating me :) I still remember every word of that last call!! He wanted me to collect all 1$ coins with presidents face on them and I am on the job collecting them for him. I dont know if I should keep them with me as your memories or give them to Harpreet to safeguard them for you!!! I had even planned what gift to give him when I return to India. Ever since Oct 22, I have something to share, I start to compose a mail to Manoj and then realise, is he going to read his gmail / infosys mails anymore and how do I share my happiness and sorrow with him?

I dont know how long it will take for me to accept the reality, but this is so hard and painful. I really wanted to add a picture of me and Manoj in this blog here but unfortunately I dont have one here with me now :(

Manoj, I miss you so much and will miss you all my life!!

Every moment I take a important decision
Every time I have a happy news
Every time I am depressed
I will miss you!!!

I will miss all those sweet teasings which irriates me to the most but bonds our friendship more stronger!!

With all my love to my everloving friend Manoj Krishnan,

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fall Color Change in Minnesota

When I came to US, I was waiting to see 2 things. Snow and autumn color change. Snow was something I could see right the second day I was here in US as I came here in Nov. I had been waiting for Oct to see the color change in trees.

I have heard the best color change can be seen in New Hamshire and Vermont in USA but I knew it was too much to travel for this. Also this change can happen anytime from Sept end to second week in Oct and planning too late would make it hard. But at the same time I know well Northern Minnesota and Wisconsin are as well best places to see the fall color changes. The below pic was taken in the drive to Duluth.

The best time to visit places were the first week of October this yr. We visited a few places in Northern Minnesota Wisconsin Border like St Croix Taylor falls area and the trail routes. It was such a pleasant drive with beautiful changes to see. One big disappointment was the temperature going as low as 34 to 31 F that we were in freezing stage most of the time that it was so hard to get off the car and even click few pics :(

I enjoyed the weekend visting so many places and infact everday the trees I see around my apartments is a beauty. But then all this will disappear in a weeks time.

Kamal Kamal and Kamal everywhere - For almost 2 months :)

I dont know why I was totally away from blog for a month now. It was never that I was busy to read or write. I had been thinking of writing so many times like when I watched "Unnai Pol Oruvan", after watching the Kamal 50 show in Vijay TV, on seeing the fall color change in Minnesota but I dont know why I never blogged!!!

Unnai Pol Oruvan

A Wednesday was a long time must watch movie in my list but dint find the time. Now with Kamal making the moving in tamil, it was must watch and I was happy that we had the movie in Minneapolis theatres and I enjoyed the movie. Just 2 days after watching the tamil version, I also saw the original movie in Hindi. I would agree for people who have seen the hindi version, this could just be boring. But ofcourse one goes for the movie knowing well its a Remake and cant expect something totally new. Also as long as you are someone who likes to watch Kamal perform, you have what you need in the movie.

Kamal has done little here and there to add his touch - Be it the Media Girl smoking or Kamal's climax speech, its really good!! Mohanlal is amazing and seeing the Sathililavathi guy as a big boy was something fun. A different nice movie worth a watch!!

Kamal 50

Inspite of being away from India, I get all shows on internet just in few hrs time. Infact as I watched so many Kamal shows in Sept and early Oct, I was wondering if it was something with me that I am finding some new Kamal interview or its Kamal everywhere for last 2 months in Tamil televisions as well? To me it was fun to watch Kamal everywhere and everyday in a new show :) Infact I was so much occupied with all those shows I never felt bored. Few episodes of Kamal's past which talks of his involvement in  தமிழ் & கலை were really interesting and infact something new to watch than the regular known stories.

For people who were not fond of Kamal and his acting I think it would have been really boring time until last week and they would feel better now :)

Monday, September 14, 2009


I d'ont know how the response is for this movie in Chennai. Somehow I had the feel Shankar productions movies will be too sentimental and emotional that too in the negative way like how things turn in Kadhal and Kallori. Those are movies I would enjoy and watch but somehow I would not be able to enjoy it much in the big screen as at the end of the day it leaves a negative sad feel in me. This time I had been too bored of movies online sitting in US. After Ayan I had not seen a movie in theatre and I got the chance yesterday. With hopes I will not walk out with a heavy heart like Kadhal or Kallori I decided to watch this movie.

Just as I thought we were totally 7 people in the theatre. Its not because of the movie but thats how it is here in Minneapolis. More becasue we made it for the matinee show. Probably the evening shows will have more crowd.

Getting to the movie, I would assure everyone this movie is very different and has nothing similar to Kadhal or Kallori. But the story was not totally new either. The base is very much what we have all seen in so many tamil movies but still it makes you worth the watch.

After the first 30 min, he keeps to waiting as in what next? He makes you do some guesses and after one stage though you know everything, you still wait to know how he has taken it further and finished. May be the speed was missing a little here and there. As for the songs, we only had 3 of them and all of them just flow with the movie. No necessity for the crowd to go out for a break in the name of introduction song or item numbere here :) I have no idea who this hero Aadi is but he has given a very neat performance. At the same time I never expected anti hero in Nandha which was different and quite ok.

It was good work by the camera man from beginning to end. Also the way the flashback was shown in link with the current story made it more interesting. Always thrillers should be watched in the big screen in theatres to get the feel and enjoy the movie as it runs. After a long time I watched a tamil movie in theatre and thankfully I had picked the right movie. It was a crimer thriller but a good entertainer to me :)

Grand Canyon West Rim - Treat for the Eyes

I had no idea that I was to see something so beautiful until I landed there. Though I had seen so many pictures and read a lot before I planned my trip, I could not really imagine what I was to see. I even felt the entrance fees was too much that too for someplace which is a natural beauty and nothing which was man made for these people to collect so much for entrance. But after 3 hrs there, I felt I had not wasted my money.

It is not a place you can see as you drive in the car. It is not a place that you can see anywhere else in the world. I would say given a chance don't miss this place. Infact we have so many options here when seeing this place. The regular view from the ground, helicopter ride and rafting the Colorado river. I don't know how much fun the last two are but from the way I saw in the counter people not minding the cost but picking tickets for helicopter tour and rafting, I can say for sure its real fun.

You need to park at the entrance and cannot drive after that to the original view areas. They have internal shuttles and we need to go with them to the designated viewers location to see the beautiful Canyon. There are 2 main view locations. We can spend from 10 min to even end of day in the same place and take the return shuttle last one by 7PM as well. The last shuttle is after sunset daily. Its always said watch the sunrise or the sunset in Canyon. The first one is possible only if you camp in the Grand Canyon park or stay very close to the Canyon. But to me, seeing such sunrise happens only for Diwali. The other day I woke up so early was probably the day I married Suresh :) I don't think anything else can start my day so soon.

It is quite possible to see the sunset and then drive back home. Its just important that you are an efficient driver as the unpaved roads and animals moving around there causes a lot of trouble for drivers in the night. We could not perfectly see the sunset as we drove back by 6.30 few min before sunset but no regrets as I wanted a safer drive home than the beauty of Canyon :)

The first view is the place where they have constructed the Sky walk. This place is more for us to sit and take pictures in different angles :)

The second view is one where I felt it was more for seeing than taking pictures. It was by far the best I had seen in terms of natural beauty. To add on here, there are couple of big rocks where you can climb and sit comfortably and see the grand canyon more like a bird's view (though this cant give the real bird's view)

As for the Skywalk, you imagine too much when you read about it. To me I will for sure say I was disappointed when I went there. May be I read too much and had imagined as though I will be in the center of the Grand Canyon and when i look down from the skywalk I can see the complete depth.

This place is made of glass that as you walk on the glass you can see the depth below you. As part of maintenance of the skywalk, we are not allowed to carry anything from cell phone to camera to hand bag there. But you are allowed to stay there as long as you wish for any number of hrs and you stand or sit or even lie down, no one stops you. They have 2 professional photographers who will get you pictures in different angles if you wish for. But I would say one thing, as for taking pictures, its better not to be there in evening time as the shadows seem to affect the pictures a lot. Also visiting skywalk is optional. If interested you pick the tickets separately, it does not come as part of the entrance.

People say they were scared to walk there and infact I saw few peoples who were holding the rails and walking and few holding the other person's hand. Please these sound really too much. Trust me after couple of seconds you walk in the glass, you feel so normal. May be some can feel little dizzy seeing below the depth etc if they have such dizziness problems. Otherwise after the first few seconds, you first admire the place around, and after some time we even sit down and see how it looks below and after spending some time there, you will try to admire the work involved in building this like I saw a man checking the number of glass layers used for the base. I think it was 6 layers of glass to form the base for walking.

I enjoyed this place so much that I ended up writing so much. A place so calm so beautiful and most of all you will be puzzled forever how could something like this get created all by itself and yet be so perfect as though it was something planned sketched out for years and made by human.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Drive to Grand Canyon

All I knew of this place was it is a desert and nothing more. Though we planned the trip for end of summer, I was shocked that its really hot there even in September. I also learnt that part of the drive would be bad as the roads are not paved.

We started our drive by 10.30 AM and on the way took a short break at Hoover Dam. That is the point of entry to Arizona from Las Vegas, Neveda. It was so hot at 11 AM for the first time I felt like being in Chennai. Almost after 9 months away from Chennai, I had the feel of home. I drank water like I have not had water in the last 2 weeks. To add on I saw myself sweating. These are something which never happens specially for a person residing in Minnesota.

Then as we drove to Grand Canyon, we learnt that it was some 25 miles of unpaved road. As we drove through that area, it was like driving the siruseri route / probably chengalpet or Kancheepuram side where I had seen quite a lot of unpaved roads. The West Rim of Grand Canyon is the place where they have constructed the sky walk 2 yrs back. When they could do something so big in the Canyon area, I was surprised that they had unpaved roads. May be they assumed the 25 miles could be a different fun for driving if the roads are not paved :) I cant find any other reason for just leaving one stretch as unpaved. Or the other reason can be, promote business. They have shuttle service to drive through as tours for people who are not comfortable to drive the unpaved roads. But for people who have driven in India, these unpaved roads are cake walk :)

As we drove we took another break for lunch and then finally reached there by 3PM. Its always said it takes 3-4 hours to visit the whole place and we managed it in the same way and started to drive back at 6PM. It was quite important to drive back in light as you get to see cattle's and lots of animals on the way walking in the middle of the road. As the sun sets by 6.45 PM it was specially important to drive through the unpaved roads when sunlight was there. As we drove, we did see a lot of animals and we thankfully escaped hitting a rabbit and atlast managed to drive safe.

I would say drive to west rim from Vegas will be quite fun and also not so hectic for a day trip.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


For the first time in 8 months, I was struck in traffic in Minneapolis in a weekend. To clear 2 miles, it took us an hr. We dint check the traffic info online before leaving home and that was our fault else we could have taken a local route and cleared the area in 10 min. We ended up getting in the highway and finding ourself in trouble. But this traffic issue was purely due to some bridge construction and when people were driving, I could see how well mannered and professional the driving was. I could not find one car who was trying to overtake the other in the small available space. Every person was courteous of the other drivers and gave way as needed to the other person. I cant imagine people being that way in India :(The complete one hr I was discussing in the car if there is ever a chance that we can see such neat handling of traffic issues in Chennai.

At the same time I feel this is a major problem for us also because we have different kind of vehicles even in our main areas from Mount Road to ECR/ OMR. We see from cycles, bikes, Auto, cars to big trucks. May be this adds trouble. Anyways the first thing needed is the step to be taken from the drivers to feel they are going to lose nothing in life by maintaining a basic gap from the vehicle in front and also giving way for some one else to drive forward and not create a jam in the place by trying to fight it with his co-driver.

Wish things change for good and everyone has a safe drive!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Thank You and Sorry

How many times does a person use these words daily?

I know it differs with every person. Some people feel its not needed to say these words unless its something big. But then why should you take the word SORRY as something so Big and never use it? Why not think that the Sorry can make both the person feel better and Thank you can make you feel happier?

I end up using both these words with every person around. I use them right from the stranger in phone to my friend and sister. No one has an exemption. Somehow it makes me feel good when I convey my sorry / thank you and hope it has the same effect on the other person :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Baseball Game

I went to watch a baseball game in Seattle. It was between New York Yankees and Seattle Mariners. I knew nothing about the game when I went there. On my way to the stadium, my brother explained me the rules. Infact he explained it giving comparison with Cricket so that it stays on my head better :-) Somehow I managed to learn 50% of the rules and made it for the game.

I learnt that they have matches everyday during summer and so I expected an empty stadium but to my surprise it was quite packed.

The first 5 min was too hard to follow and then I got little comfortable. My brother constantly was giving me some updates and then almost after 30 min I could set myself comfortable with the game and follow it far better than I thought. It was half way through the game that I really developed interest in it and watched it better. May be from now on, I will watch these games as a hobby :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Visit to Casino

After a long wait here I got the chance to visit a Casino. All I knew was its a place of gambling and nothing more. The casino I visited here in Minneapolis was a small one. On entering the place, my first feel was "is everyone playing some video games here like kids" Then we decided to play something, I had to first try and learn it than just waste money without following it. I realised I need to play for some good amount to first get in terms with the game and then try to win :) I hardly played few minutes but I realised in no time I will end up getting addicted to it :) It was a good experience and fun to be there. I also knew I had to set my limits the next time I decide to play and enjoy :-)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Niagara Falls

We had a nice weekend in Niagara Falls recently. Before I planned this trip, people suggested I see the falls from Canada Side. Now I was not able to plan that as it demanded 4 days trip atleast. To add on I would need the first day for visa. I even remember people telling me, don't waste visiting in American side. After a lot of confusion I had to take the option of US side due to leave constraint for my husband.

We reached the airport and was shocked seeing rains. I was wondering, do I carry rains with me everywhere? My last day of vacation in SFO had little rains and then my first day in Mt Rushmore S.Dakota ended in rains and not the same in Buffalo :(

The next morning was a surprise to me as I could see some sunshine :) We happily headed to the falls and well I had imagined I would not see anything good (due to the feedback from friends) but it was still a amazing sight to watch. We had good time visiting the mist boat tour and cave of the winds. But only after spending one full day there I realised the place had nothing to see for more than 6 hrs and you will get bored if you spend anytime more than that.

We stayed longer till 10PM to watch the fireworks as we missed it in Mt Rushmore on July 4th. This time with the rains not showing up, we had a nice time watching the fireworks. After seeing the place I realised that viewing the falls from Canada Side would be the best treat to the eyes :)

One surprise was the number of Indian eateries in that area. I ended up seeing more than 5 places with Indian food. Though it can be agreed as a big tourism place, its still a surprise what makes it so special for Indians :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Jet Ski and Wave Runners

Some people call it wave runners while some say jet ski. I was trying to find the difference between the two. When i googled I learnt that "Jet-Ski is a registered trademark to Kawasaki. Wave runner is with Yamaha" They also say the best term to use is "PWC or personal watercraft". I also heard some say, when you sit down its the wave runner one while in Jet ski, the person behind will stand. In New York, I found that it was called Jet ski but in Chicago I see it as Wave runner. But well whats in the name as long as you enjoy :) I just tried some googling to know the basic info before going for the fun!

I am no good when it comes to water sports. I am really scared. But still we made our first attempt with kayak in Bay area in San Fransisco. That was indeed fun but somehow I was really scared. This time in Chicago I was no different. After a few promises from Suresh that he will drive slow and make me feel good, I decided to go for it :) We went for a 30 min ride and well to share the truth it was amazing. I did get scared once in while when he raised the speed, but still I would say I enjoyed most of it :) I was in a double mind if I should try a ride myself, but somehow I could not set myself for doing it. Inspite of that, I enjoyed it a lot.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Power Cut

I had never heard of power cut in US. But when we experienced it 2 days back, I realised life comes to a halt here in case of power cut for more than couple of hrs :( Some transformers were down and hence power cut for 12 hrs. Nothing worked. No phone, no gas, no intercom nothing. You turn any side you learn nothing is working. That's why I said everything came to a halt. It was a very different experience. To add on the fire alarm went on to shout due to loss of power. Physical removal (that's a security breach)of that was the only way to get peaceful sleep. But I ended up having a miserable sleep due to that painful sound all through the night. I was just wondering how would it be in Chennai. In fact nothing would come to a stop except for the fact we will sweat out in irritation due to loss of power :(

Friday, July 10, 2009

Birthday Wishes

I love wishing people on their birthday. I feel more happy when I learn that I am the first to wish them. I know it sounds a little crazy. Sometimes I even try hard to wish them at 12 in the night. But some people find nothing special about birthday leave alone wishing others :)

I can recollect a lot of those sweet memories. Few in school days were when we used to celebrate buying some cake and coke in the shop outside school and those days a budget of Rs 200 was something hard to get from parents :) Then one special time in college was probably the 2nd yr bday. It fell on a Saturday and still I got the maximum wishes that yr. It always takes a special place in my heart. While at work, biggest surprise was my sister wishing me at 12 in 2005, and 2006 was special with some friends in Hyd and specially opening a gift at 12 AM, and then 2007 was kind of unforgettable. Again on a Saturday with so many people wishing and not to forget a small party we had on Friday bowling and dinner. Who can forget the crazy things Nesa (my friend) does :)

At the same time I should say, I have enjoyed some other friends bday more than mine at times :) Cutting a cake in the car at 12AM in Hyd for a friend, Making a friend open his gift at 12AM , calling up the US hotel desk phone at 12 AM and making them connect to the room for wishing, visiting a friend at 6.30 AM and waking her from sleep... Haha.. I know reading these will only irritate few people who feel I disturb sleeping people, but somehow I love to wish them in some special way and the best idea for that is wake them from sleep :)

To all my friends, don't worry I will trouble you too very soon :)

Fireworks in Mt Rushmore - Messed Up

I took so long for this post because I was disappointed. I dint have the chance to enjoy the fireworks in Rushmore :(

As we drove on July 3rd towards Rapid City, we got delayed due to scattered rain right from 9AM to 2PM. But after that we were little pleased to see some clear skies and the sun showing up which made us energetic to drive to Mt Rushmore. Even then we knew the chances of enjoying fireworks was low.

At 5 PM we reached there to find not just the parking full but cars parked up to 3 miles away from the Mt Rushmore entrance. We almost spent an hr driving around trying to see if we can find a parking spot closer to the entrance but in vain. Finally we ended up parking 3 miles away from the original entrance. Few pics I clicked from the car itself :)

We were happy even then to see clear skies and started walking the 3 miles to the entrance. It took us almost 45 min to reach, but then seeing huge crowd around dint make us tired at all.

I know we see such crowds for ball drop and New yr fireworks here but this is the first time I was part of such a crowd. The below pic is just part of the Amphitheater crowd, we saw people right from one mile of entrance as you see view of the faces from there till the real memorial area.

No exaggeration here... I entered the memorial and picked my camera and looked above the mountain. Oh my god, where are the faces?? Just gone in moments?? Yes Fog came from nowhere and took control :( We still thought it will clear up. 7PM became 8 and then 8.30...Hope dies :( I ended up putting the camera back in my bag.

As part of Independence day special, they had a team from Army performing musical show for the crowd. We saw huge crowds eagerly hoping the fog will clear and we can see the fireworks. As per the schedule, the first trial firework came up at 9.20. All I heard was a THUD sound and nothing else :(

With the hope it will still work out and also not to disappoint the huge crowds, they went on to have the fireworks at 9.30 for the next 30 minutes. All we saw were just few stars once in while coming out of it and nothing more. Till the end we never got to see the Rushmore faces in the mountain with the fireworks :(

Again a long walk to pick the car and drive home. One thing I have to mention here is the discipline with which people went to take the car and drive home. At 11 PM I was so worried if we can drive safe without any mess due to thousands of cars and people walking thru the mountain area. I was so surprised to see how organised people were and till the end I dint hear even one person using the car horn. I was reminded of the match I watched in Chennai stadium and went back home in the night. It was a nightmare for us to get home that night. I wonder when we will learn these good things.

We could not click a pic together in front of MT Rushmore which made us feel we need to visit the place again next evening. This was again a shock to me as we drove same way around 7PM on July 4th only to see the complete pathway free and hardly few cars in the parking ramp. We went in parked and visited the place. This time there was no climatic issues and we could click good pics, just that fireworks was missed :(

Though sometime it seems like a place of least interest to visit as its just a place to see and walk away, when you think on the work involved in carving the four faces on the top of a mountain rock involving 14 yrs work, it deserves a visit and appreciation :)

Though I don't know how it would have felt to drive thru those places, I would still add that the drive to the place is amazing and enjoyable as commented by my husband :)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Woow Vacation Time :-)

Its really new for me to see Independence of a country celebrated so much :-) It was a huge surprise for me to see fireworks on sale every where for July 4th celebrations. In some places, they have fireworks on 3rd night and in some places its on 4th.

The idea of so much fireworks and fun comes to me only for Diwali :) This experience will be totally new and hoping to enjoy it in Mt Rushmore :) But at the same time, it does make sense to celebrate the Independence in this way.

However its not the celebration that counts but the happiness and satisfaction of living in a country which makes us feel proud of our country. I wonder how many people get that feel in our country.

Guess I should write more after I watch them celebrate :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Vijay Awards 2008

I watched the complete show though the clarity was poor in the online links.... I dint know what was in for me but just started watching as I was bored at home.... I would not regret the 5 hrs spent in it just for the fact of watching Kamal Hassan up and down the stage and gaining laurels to his name :)

The hype for Varanam Aayiram was too much and not to forget the scene of Surya taking the award got too sentimental... Irrespective of that, he deserved the award for when I think of his looks in the movie, he looked perfect to be a boy of age 17 , or 22 or 25 or even the dad character guy. Just for the effort involved in making sure he suites the age perfect :)

A few were argumental like Bhagyaraj son Shanthanu getting the fresh face when we had amazing performance from the Anjathae guy.... Somehow Saroja deserved to have something for bringing good comedy with thrill but sad that it went home empty handed.

Subramaniyapuram and Anjathae happened to get some good deserving awards and gave a good competition to Varanam Aayiram. But at the end, Best Director to Gautham was somehow not convincing to me while KS Ravikumar really deserved it.

The show was an entertainer to me as I dint find any interesting Tamil movies in the 2 months. They dint bug us much with entertaining dances. The number were pretty less.

I am eagerly waiting for "Unnaipol Oruvan" . All the best Kamal Hassan!!!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Empire State Building NY

Its a beautiful building to see and visit. Ofcourse worth the wait for 1 hr in the rush and then get to the top and see the view of the city from there. If you go before noon I would even say the wait is just an hr and again the problem is you have only 3 elevators and hence the wait time is going to be there always... Same holds good when you have to come down again.... The trip to reach the top is worth the wait as its gift for the eyes to see.

What of the Sky Ride in the Empire State Building? You have to pay for it separately and to add on, the ride is just not worth the money. More if you are one person who has already been to Disney/Orlando and enjoyed all simulated rides, this is just a kids ride and you will find it totally waste your money. This ride is 20 min but again you will have to wait for the show for at least 30 to 40 min in the queue. If your unlucky you might end up missing that show and pushed to the next one also :(

But then I would say if you have the 3 day or 1 day new york city pass which gives you some 50 attractions in it, then you can go for the sky ride. Even then if you feel there is shortage of time, I suggest you to skip this one :)

Thursday, June 4, 2009

DC Museums and visit

A place where you find so many museums that I would say you need more than a week to visit, learn and enjoy each of it. You name it and you find a museum on that subject there :) The best part of it is, entry to all the museums is free and I cant imagine something like this and still everything is so perfect, well organised and maintained so well...

Specially the Museum of Space and Air is so huge and so much to learn from there :) I cant comment much as I managed to visit only 4 of them.

World war 2 memorial is a treat for the eyes, beautifully maintained. Each and every monument in that location is amazing. Korean war memorial, Lincoln memorial, Vietnam war memorial everything was so wonderful to see. The view from Washington Monument and US capitol building, White House each of these a masterpiece in itself.

One thing which would be more wonderful to see for visitors is US Capitol tour, which should be booked 2 weeks in advance online, you wont get it otherwise. Washington Monument also needs a very early booking like early in the morning at 8AM. So if you really wish to tour the 2 places, make sure to plan before and pick your tickets. I would also add both would be worth a tour.

Of the few places I have visited around US, I would vote for DC as the best. A place so beautiful to see, so neat and organised. Wish I could have visited the place in the start of Springs or may be should visit for the fall :)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Why is our system so bad?

Will we ever have any of the below implemented in our country?
1.When someone makes an accident while driving, he should be given a heavy ticket
2.Cases of fatal accidents, licence must be ceased....
3.Once you get 3 tickets , your licence is cancelled.... Go thru the complete process once more and get a fresh licence...
4.You have to first go and write the written test for driving licence and cant just sign a paper and driving school gets you the learner licence.
5.Planned driving road test must be conducted and paying driving school should never help you get licence as now....
I see all this as just silly dreams.... But sitting away from India, I admire each of these systems followed here. Everyone here checks for the speed limit in each area and drives. The first day it sounded shocking and then from day 2 I enjoyed that system and understood how much it reduces accidents and traffic issues :)
I am scared that very soon I will feel I should settle here in US :( Infact I am so eager to drive here these days :)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Different Places Different Feel!!

I felt so different landing in Washington DC and New York last week. To start with DC first, it was so organised and it had a style in itself. May be because all the places I visited were of high importance to the government (Pentagon, White House, US Capitol)and hence that way. I dint find big crowds on the roads except in places of tourism.
But when i landed in New York, I was standing on a Saturday night in Times Square near the ball drop area and I was shocked the most. I was just wondering if i was help up in Ranganathan Street. First thing that shocked me was so much crowd which I had never seen in the last 6 months anywhere in US. Second was "People were not following Traffic rules". Now its obvious i think of India :) Then in few places I was actually pushed by people... Now you will agree the Ranganathan St comparison. I saw so many people in salwar, sarees and so much of Hindi, Telugu and Tamil more than English.... Infact some of the areas like the Subway (Local Metro within the city) were indeed dirty and clumsy.... Don't you think the above things are not enough to feel I have got back to India and specially Chennai :)
Its been 2 extreme experiences in the last 4 days but at the same time very much enjoyable.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


This is the first Tamil movie I got to watch in a theatre here. I don't think I have ever been in a theatre where just 30 viewers were seated to watch a Tamil movie :) It was such a comedy with very less people around. But at the same time I was finding it so wierd to hear so many people speak tamil in a theatre. Infact Brooklin is the only theatre screening movies from Tamil, Telegu and Hindi here.
As such I liked the movie, though it dint have anything special. I had never listened to the songs before. So i was not too impressed with them too. But one thing for sure is that after watching short movies without songs here, its really hard to accept 5 to 6 songs in a movie. But I also guess my mind will change once I come back home :)

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hindu Temple in Maple Grove Minneapolis

This is the only temple in Minneapolis and mostly all Indian Hindus here would make a visit to this place. But since its far away people will have to plan the route well and drive. Specially the route suggested by google maps is pretty complex. I don't know why it dint suggest the better easier route. The route given in the temple website is better and easier.
The moment I reached there, I found it so new and weird. I have never seen a temple structure like this before. The entrance to the temple was also so different from the ones in India.

Being the only temple here, they had tried to have all gods sannidi. That way it felt good and nice. They had Vinayagar, Iyyapan, Saraswathi, Lakshmi, Durga, Shiva, Vishnu, Murugar, Balaji, Saniswarar and lots more. The inside atmosphere of the temple was same as all our temples. The peaceful place and regular chanting of mantras and prasadams, made us feel at home. It gave a peace of mind and happiness being around there.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Exam Fever.. Election Fever... IPL Fever.. !!!

First and foremost which of the above 3 is toping the list in Chennai/India now? I dont know. For every student the first one will decide his future career..... the second one is supposed to improve our country status to get us as a developed country and the last one is for our pride..afterall cricket is religion in India :) and I am no exception to that list of cricket lover :)
I wonder how the election fever is back home. I miss it this time... But how does it matter who wins... the problems of common men will never change... Traffic jam, bad driving, unsafe travel... Poor education system, education for money .... no punctuality in any sector.. no planning of work... pathetic broken roads, dirty mess everywhere in the roads , this is a never ending list :(
One thing is sure, when i go back to India, the first few weeks will be miserable to handle and get set with my old life :( But at the same time, one major factor pulling me back home is family :) So whatever is the trouble of living there, I will come back soon :)

Monday, May 4, 2009

A short trip to Chicago

I was jus looking for a one day outing and suddenly came into the idea of Chicago. When i did some research I realised its possible to cover most places in a day. But still the temple in Aurora is really far from Downtown and so is Devon Avenue (lots and lots of Indian Restaurants here). So if you are looking at covering things in a day, its either the temple or food :)

You have a lot of parks here around downtown but its better to pick couple of them and carry on. Millennium Park is one place which needs a visit sometime during the day to enjoy it best. May be Grant Park and Buckingham Fountain can wait for the evening as the fountain will be more beautiful to see in the night.

What you see below is just one pic from Millennium park. This place is amazing. Worth a visit for sure. So big so beautiful, maintained great in mid downtown :)

Cruises at Navy Pier are good and enjoyable. Just as London eye you have one here in Chicago. The speed boats in Navy Pier are amazing fun. Some interesting buildings to look at are around Michigan Avenue Bridge like Wrigley, Tribune Tower, Marine City, John Hancock Tower. The water taxi runs thru some areas and may be even that can be used to commute between places during site seeing.

How can I forget the most important place "Sears Tower". Infact I would say a visit to Sears Tower and John Hancock Tower is worth. In case you want to visit these, better to buy the Chicago One day Card for 65$ as you will get entry to number of places and these 2 also and it will turn out very cheap. Incase you dont intend to visit these places, you can opt for a one day pass which will let you take all buses and trains in Chicago with the one day pass. Beware you need a lot of planning to travel yourself just with one day pass :) One big difference I found after visiting Minneapolis San Fransisco and Chicago Downtown is, this place Chicago is so big and such a beautiful Downtown, may be I might like New York more. But as of now, this downtown is such a cool place :) May be a 2 day weekend trip would be more relaxing and fun.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Kamal's "Unnai Pol Oruvan"

I just got to see the short trailer today in utube and went on to read some articles on the movie "Unnai Pol Oruvan" remake of "A Wednesday" Why was that the movie named as "Thalaivan Irukkindran" renamed? Infact the name "Thalaivan Irukkindran" seems nice. I could never find anywhere the reason for the name change. Is it a sentimental feeling that changing movie name will give success or a way to get publicity? :(

But beyond all this, I wish to see yet another success from Kamal and waiting for the movie just as his other fans :) Infact as I watched the trailer today, I had a feeling " One person who reduces in age every yr - Kamal Hassan " :-)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cricket World Cup 2011

I just happened to read the latest news on SriLanka and India hosting the semi finals of the world cup and India hosting the finals. It feels good to have another world cup in Asia with India doing major hosting. But for us to have the complete fun and fever of cricket, whats more important is Peace around. How are we going to make sure each and every player plays with peace of mind and no care and worry about security and safety.

With so much of 20 20 around, Its going to be hard to make the crowd sit for a 50 50 game in future. Not only that, it will take some time to tune our minds for our regular game. It is such a privilege and fun to be the host country again and I only hope that things turn for good and better in the next 2 yrs and we have a peaceful exciting fun filled trilling series. Hopefully we see some country break the record which the Aussies have been having for the last 3 world cups and I personally wish its India who does that and raise the trophy this time :)

IPL T20 2009

I had a hard time to find a good link where I can get decent clarity and good streaming for the live matches. I have a good time watching the night matches. Its been a big surprise to me to find that teams who were so much behind last time have come forward so well so far whereas the 2 major teams who performed best last yr are miserably down :(
Its great to see Deccan, Mumbai, Royal Challengers coming up so well but being a die hard fan of Chennai, it hurts to see the way our team is performing. Though we cant conclude anything from the first 10 days of matches, it lets the spirit go down and get a feel "are we Chn super kings already thrown out this yr?" One disappointment is rain spoiling the matches and letting teams get 1 points each. These one points will later play a crucial role and make teams qualify for next round. So better option is to win every possible match that comes up rather than mess up in tension in the last few matches where again we don't just hope for our team to win but sometimes hope some teams lose so that we qualify for the next round ;-)
I don't know how our people are enjoying the series back home. Is the same spirit and cricket fever there though the series is not conducted in India?
One good thing is the crowd I see in these matches in South Africa. I was infact expecting very much empty stands, buts its nice to see good amount of crowd. Just hoping that matches don't go one sided as we have seen few in the last week and have good fun and trill in each match. After all the idea of 20 20 itself is complete thrill and fun. At the same time I wish Chn super kings can get better from the next match and let fans feel more happy :)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


This is the first movie for director Rohan Krishna but he is one person who is already popular for his big success in television for "Kanna Kaanum Kaalangal". That has been one serial which made me sit and watch the complete 30 min laughing and enjoying. A serial on school students, full of youth, entertaining and fun. They did have some serious stories as part of every students family. It was always fun to watch that serial. Guess I will write on the serial instead of the movie now :)

This movie Pattalam is almost photo copy of the serial. It may even be said for the KKK serial viewers, this might be boring.. Just the nakkal and teasing of school students have a small change, otherwise its the same as the serial except for the fact the serial story was for 300 days while this is a miniature for 2 hrs. Three of the serial team members have played good roles here too.

This will not have anything of the usual romance and fights. You need to go back to your 11th std and sit in the theatre and enjoy the 2 hrs laughing. Songs were not too good to remain in our hearts.

One sad thing I saw with the serial and the movie is that, for some reason the director brings a twist in the story to make sure one of the school boy/girl dies due to the silly immatured work or decisions taken by student at this adolocence age of 16 and 17. But in one way it shows that some decisions taken at the age of 17 are immatured and might cause fatel. It was an entertaining movie on a different story line and a movie to relax and watch.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Yaavarum Nalam

After a long time, I felt good and happy to watch a movie without fights/ love duets/mother sister sentiment and usual flow of story. Its a refreshing change to see movies like this admist crap regular masala movies.

Though I dint have the chance to watch this in theatre, I was able to get 50% effect on my television. There was nothing in the movie which scares you except that the sound effects try to give a scary tense feel. One thing which was good was the camera work. It was nice to see a movie where there is not any songs just for the sake of it :) The 2 songs went with the movie and dint irriate the viewers.

The story was nothing new anyways. Still refreshing and worth a watch as we get to see these kind of movies very rarely. Infact it was ultimate comedy in few scenes where he takes some people with him in the lift as it does not work when he goes alone :) But the first half was very slow and dragging. Some people might as well lose the interest to watch it due to the slowness.

I enjoyed the movie inspite of the few small drawbacks, Movies like "Evano Oruvan" and now "Yaavarum Nalam" are good scripts , some thing new for Maddy to work on. Wishing he finds movies with more interesting scripts like this and makes it more enjoyable for the fans :)

Thursday, March 19, 2009


I was so much interested to watch this movie as I expected good comedy in Dhanush Vivek combination. But I had to end up in total disappoinment after I watched it.
When u think of the Rajini movie, the name is perfect to his character. He remains uneducated as he is pushed to the state where he has to bring up his brother.
But here in this dhanush movie, he has all that he needs to get his education but he doesn't. Then how will this name be suitable for the movie?
The movie had nothing interesting but just the usual masala kind. What disappoints everyone is Vivek comedy in this movie. Vivek is not in scene till interval. Thats the first disappointment but when you see what he delivers in the second half, I was happy he was not in scene in the first half. Its complete disappointment to his fans. The comedy was never upto his mark.
With a mild script and nothing special, its not always possible to have success. Polladhavan and Yaaradi Nee Mohini worked out for Dhanush as it had many more positives like comedy , songs etc. But this movie lacked both and to add on a normal nothing interesting story.
Just hoping if we can get better quality movies in future from him.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Island of Adventure

I have had a few things in my mind on which i wanted to post an article but somehow never got the time to do it. Hopefully i do one of those now.

Well its continuation to Universal Studios article. Now its on the other park which is part of Universal which is Island of Adventure. Dont ever think that 2 parks just side by side and how much will it be fun to visit this one. Ur wrong if u assume it as less fun. This one is totally different. You cant find one similarity to what you had seen in Universal.

Again you need a lot of planning to cover all the rides. One big advantage is, if u dont have kids around, you can cover them for sure coz the kids zone here is exclusive to kids and you really cant go for the rides except the kids train coz it kind of gives u a nice view.

Here in the first zone, you will have 4 rides of which 3 are rides while one is simulation of Spider man movie. As far as the 3 rides go, one is a coaster ( I dont know how many will have the guts to take that ride) the other 2 are pretty cool ones. Spiderman as usual is amazing. You go there right at 9 AM or even before that is getter, park opens at 8.30 moslty. You can cover this first zone really fast if you make it early in the day.

The next zone is water zone. Here you have 2 amazing water rides. By the time you get to this area, there will be good amount of queue here. But trust me it wont be wait more than 20 min or so. Only one warning here, you will get really wet and so have ur imp things safe. Both of them are amazing rides, never miss them. By now it could be lunch time to you :)

Now you enter the Jurassic park zone. Here you have one exhibition, one kids area to play and one amazing simulation of the movie and water ride , and the last one is the amazing top view of the place in a simple ride. In case you come to this area right in the morning, you might cover them fast. But I went post lunch and I had to spend 1 hr in queue in jurassic water ride and my bad luck i missed the ariel view ride as wait time was 90 min. But I suggest anyone to plan better and not miss it. I had the option to go for it at the end by 7 PM but too much of darkness you might not enjoy much in ariel view.

This next zone has one big time dragon ride... really fast and scary one. Then you have an amazing Sindbad show here. You have to check the timing and go as you only have some 4 shows per day. The next is one more amazing place where its more nice to visit and see than give any comments. Both the show and this one will take 45 min each. So better to plan the timing acordingly.

With that you reach the kids zone. Amazing 5 rides for the kids. The only one elders can try is the train one :)

In addition to all this, the first area reminds you only of the loud shouting of the riders in hulk ride while the water splash zone gives you the feel of water always around you , and when in jurassic area, you feel being around all animals and birds... and in the Sindbad area, you feel the whole place so mystrious and different and kids zone sound so much fun perfect for kids.

This is one place which can be prefectly covered from morning 8 to night 8. But u also need patience to wait in long queues at times. Very different from Universal and again a must watch place.

City walk can be covered either on the day you visit universal or this island of adventure. Thats more special for the lovely restuarants, AMC theatre and much more fun shows. There is also Blue Man Show there, but I dont have much idea on that.

Since Universal Studios in Orlando is more bigger than LA, make sure to enjoy it completly when possible.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Interesting Places around SFO

Though the places in city can be visited easily with public transport, we do have some places which can be better visited in car. I would even say tourism packages wont help in those cases, as that will not let you spend much time.

On way to San Jose, you will come across Mystery Spot in Santa Cruz. This place is very different. Its better to visit than even read it in the website. You really need to go here in the morning as you will end up seeing "House Full" board.

Monterey - This is one place where even spending one complete day might not be enough. You have a wonderful Aquarium and Whale watch. But whale watch might be amazing to few where as ur bad luck might end up that you dont see much of them too. There are few more adventure activities like Kayaking, sky diving and bay bikes. I dont think I have mentioned on all the attractions here, this is just the ones I looked into.

Very close to Monterey , you can drive thru to Caramel city. This city has a very cute and its a seaside town which makes it so beautiful to see. I am not too sure on any attractions here as I have only taken a drive and admired the place. I have heard that Big Sur is also a place worth visit, but I dont have much info on this place.

Moving to the other side, south of Golden Gate Bridge in SFO, you must drive all the way to Sausalito and it should be in day time as you will get to see the best view and closest view of Golden Gate Bridge.

Driving further from Golden Gate Bridge, you can reach Muir woods. This forest is so amazing, best place for hiking. You dont have to be a great walker.. You have the option of taking small trails as well as long trails, so depending on ur ablility u can decide wat kind of hiking you wish to go to.

Then from Muir woods , you can go to Muir Beach and then to Muir Beach Overview. This Muir beach Overview is the best place to visit. I had the best feel when I went there. Standing here, you get to see the complete Pacific ocean right in front of you. You also have Mt. Tamalpais State Park very much close to this. Then driving further you can get to Stinson beach. I have heard that Pt Reyes is also a wonderful place to visit, this is the national seashore. But you can't cover all these places in one day. Probably well planned, you can visit all these in 3 days.

Ofcouse there can be few more amazing places to visit around SFO but this was all I had heard of and had also visited recently. It was like gift for the eyes to see the coastal areas and enjoy the fresh air.

San Fransisco

Quite a few things which made me feel at home in SFO is every few miles you see a Indian restuarant, and the weather is so plesant and good as Ooty and Kodai. Ofcourse I also had my sis there and hence never felt like I was at a new place.

One nice thing here is that, you can commute to all places so easily. So many buses, tram, local trains etc. Infact this is one place where you can fo the complete site seeing all by yourself without a car.

Sometime people say you can see all places in SFO in one day, but then I suggest people spend 2 days in SFO. Only then you can cover all the places at leisure.

In SFO, you can take a one day pass / 3 day pass which will allow you to travel in all SFO buses, muni, trains for 3 days indefinite times. Its the cheapest and best way to commute inside the city. When you pick the pass, you also get a booklet with map giving the details of the cable car routes and stops, muni routes and stops. You just have to decide the places you need to visit and start off.

Infact when you use the muni, you get to see a lot of the city and you might as well end up learning the routes in SFO. When you take the cable car, you can cover Union Square, Nob Hill, China Town, Lombard Street and final destination will be reaching the beach side. Before the final destination you can take a route to reach Coit Tower where you can have a wonderful view of the city. You will also get to see Grace Cathedral on the way.

There starting from beach street , can walk to Ghiradelli Square and museum near by. Then take a longer walk and reach Fisherman warf, check out the submarine there and take the cruise. The ferry cruise gives u various options, either to golden gate bridge and around alcatrez, one around sausalito, one to angel island. It is not possible to find a tour to all places. So its for you to decide which one interests you. Apart from this, you also have a complete Alcatrez tour which will take you to the island , drop you there, you can go around and visit the place and get back after few hrs in another ferry. Regular ferry will only take 1 hr but Alcatrez will take 3 hrs. So based on the time available, you can choose. Remember its very hard to find ferry to Alcatrez, its always needed to book online in advance by a day or so, else you wont find it.
If you continue walking thru, you will cross many more of those ferry tours, you also have tour where it includes a visit to aquarium at Pier 39. As you walk thru the coast you might even end up crossing the ferry building and reaching the market street. But thats indeed a very hard walk, so once you go thru the ferry, you can take a muni and see thru the places from the bus.
I dont know if I have missed any other interesting spot in Market Street.
A little away from this place, you can go to Golden Gate Park, I wonder if i had seen a park as big as this before. Its impossible to walk thru completly. You also have a Tea garden here and a museum, and the tower view of the city near the museum is again amazing and worth a watch. Moving further from Golden Gate Park, you can get to Palace of Fine Arts - wonderful palace, science museum. A little further you will reach the all time special Golden Gate Bridge :)

You have one more special place worth a visit here which is the Twin Peaks. I am not sure on reaching this place by bus as I went in car. This gives one of the best view of the city.

I might have repeated in so many places its beach, coastal view and tower view. But trust me its worth in all ways. Its different and great to watch from each of these places. Some places might be special when you just see in pics, but this place is special and worth a real watch than jus seeing in pics.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


I had been wondering since weekend, if I have ever seen a movie worse than Villu all these years. Its almost 2 days and I dont have an answer yet. I have been thinking in many ways. First and foremost what had been the worse movie I had seen before Villu... Yes it was Alwar (though i am die hard Ajith fan, I cant deny this movie was pathetic). But today I can proudly say Its Villu and I dont think I will ever find any movie in future worse than this!!

Now I can assure everyone that Thirupaachi, sivakasi, madurai, bhagavathi everything was far better and watchable as atleast the comedy in those movies were enjoyable. Here in the name of comedy Vadivelu, Vijay and Nayanthara have literally killed the audience.

Looking back at other movies of Prabudeva, Nuvvostanante Nenoddantana and pokiri were amazing in Telegu and they were pretty much decent in Tamil too. I wonder how he could ever do a movie like Villu?

The intro song goes as "Rama rama rama rama raman kitta villu kaetaen ..bheema bheema bheema bheema bheeman kitta ghadaiya kaethaen... " Audience prefer to say "director kitta first kadaya keelutaya?? "

Friday, January 23, 2009

Visit to Universal Studios

I can say it was actually hard when we had to start off.. I browsed thru the net to get some idea on how to plan my day and i found one blog interesting and it gave me some tips on how to plan. Main tips from that blogger was ... start early and reach the theme parks as soon as they open, u can cover many rides fast as the crowd builds up after 11 AM.. He was so much right :) Secondly was prioritize which ride is more important to u... else u will miss the important ones in the end :)

When we entered the studios, for the first 2 hrs we even dint have the theme park directory with us.. we missed picking it at the gates... Still as we reached the part at 8AM..we atcually covered the first 3 rides in less than 2 hrs and after that we could see that the waiting time for the show and rides incresing from 5 min to 20 min and 30 min :) But after that once we picked the directory, we could plan perfectly. You need the directory for 2 reasons, one is that it will give u the complete route map..searching the correct eatery u wish is easy now :) secondly some of the shows are time specific... so u will miss them if u go late.. so make sure u pick the directory copy....

Just as anyone says, check the directory and plan first the shows which are time specific... and ofcourse some rides take longer time...

Mummy, Men in black, Jaws - These rides dont take much time as long as the crowd is less... I think my wait time was less than 5 min for these and the rides themselves also less than 5 u cover them first and fast..

Disaster and Twister - These are 2 shows where they prefer to get some decent amount of people before the start mainly coz they will have people presenting the show and it will help them to perform for a bigger audience. But again as we started our day soon, we covered these 2 also with wait time of like 15 min.

Horror show, Rock and Roll show and Fear Factor live - These are time bound, u need to be there 10 min before the show time.. else u will again miss it.

Nikelodeon, Shrek 4D , Terminator 3D - These again might take some time, as these will prefer larger crowds. But by the time we came for these rides, it go crowded and my wait time was almost 25 min in each.

The latest new addition to the park is Simpson Ride - It was an amazing one, and anytime i went there, it was 60 min wait time. We had that last..went at 6.30 PM, came out happy after one hr wait, enjoying the ride.

We actually skipped the complete Kids zone, though we wanted to go to ET. We dint have time. So i would say we spent 8AM to 8PM and covered these and yes ofcourse u have a lunch and tea break in between and the bigger problem is, during lunch time again the eateries will also be crowded... So its hard to manage time there too :(

I can assure you one thing, if u plan little more better.. u can probably also cover the kids area in a day and have good fun too !! Anyways unless you have real small kids 2 of those are not worth going as they are too much for elders :) but yeh couple of kids stuff is also good :)