My travels is all about... My views on random places of interest, persons, things, events & issues etc,.

Saturday, 31 March 2018

The last among un-equals

At Ol Pejeta, the great lonely beast passed away,
The 'last man standing' was a sad epithet on any given day.
In the great lands of Africa, his kind roamed in thousands,
But that was long back, a glory that was set for a sad end.

'Those horns can cure cancer' - the quacks claimed,
Poachers echoed in unison, for the profits to be gained.
Few torchbearers fought on behalf of the stricken animals,
A brutal battle for a lost cause, and the radicals trumped the rationals.

Thus a great sub-species had become a mere foot-note of history,
A long shot promise for revival, now a scientific mystery.
In an unforgiving world, 'Sudan' was never the first among equals,
A passing item of news-sites, he was merely 'The last among un-equals'

#16-7-16 ('Bhramara' Ground Floor), Saladi Jamindar Street, Palakollu (West Godavari), Andhra Pradesh
31st of March, 2018

The Last among Unequals (Poem) on 'Sudan' - the last male Northern White Rhino
On 19th of March, 2018 at Ol Pejeta Conservatory in Kenya, 'Sudan', the world's last male Northern White Rhino passed away at 43. Only two females are left living. The sub-species is slated for extinction, unless ongoing research on In-Vitro Fertilization techniques are successful. Rhinos face threats like Poaching because of alleged and unscientific importance of Rhino Horns in many traditional medicine systems & Man-animal conflict due to loss of habitat.
Picutre above -Michael Dalton-Smith or Digital Crossing Productions.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

The Course of a River (Godavari)

I arise unmindful of my humble origins, blessed by the canopy of the Western Ghats -
at Nashik Triambakeshwar of Maharashtra, I start to the East without being fast.
My course gently demarcates districts, and Kings fought over my waters in the Past -
the belligerents changed at the present, yet I move  duty minded till the last.

Cutting the dominant Deccan Plateau, I am the solace of the parched throats of the People, -
Manjira, Pranhita, Indravati & others enrich me every year as if in a scripted sequel.
Numerous dams adorn my course, trying to channel my flow -
and this brings a joy to the one who toils in the farm and wields his/her plough.

Piligrims to Basar and Bhadradri dip in my waters, as like at many other holy places,
and I turn fast and deep matching the Wild terrain of  Papi Hills, indulging in Hide & Seek embraces.
Widening at the old Chalukyan Capital, I salute Sir Cotton's engineering prowess,
Finally I branch out in honor of great sages, creating the 'Rice Bowl' Delta with little loudness.

Sometimes when the rains are too much, or I'm just too angry, I take away life and property,
But always and almost, I'm benign and life giving, if only I'm understood properly.
The Coal mines, the lush green paddy fields, Fish, the coconut trees - all hues of my happiness.
This is the story of my course and now, I must flow with all pride and prettiness!

The Course of a River (Godavari)
River Godavari is India's second longest River which flows for a total of 1,465 Kilometres draining the states of Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Puducherry and empties into the Bay of Bengal, forming one of the largest river basins in India.
In the poem,
1st Stanza - Nashik Triambakeshwar is the place of origin of the River (Maharashtra)
2nd Stanza - Majira, Pranhita, Indravati are tributaries of the River
3rd Stanza - Basar, Bhadradri - famous piligrimage centres on the banks of the River and it's tributaries.
3rd Stanza - Old Chalukyan Capital refers to present day city of Rajamahendram in AP.
3rd Stanza - Sir Cotton refers to Sir Arthur Cotton http://viewofawanderer.blogspot.in/2016/05/cotton-tribute-poem-ships-from-west.html
Picture above - Sunset across the River at Dindi resorts.

Saturday, 10 March 2018

'So, that's the Headlines for the Day...


In one of the 'Smart Cities' of India, an urgent meeting was being held at the office of a prominent 'Media House' (say, a News Channel 'Y' - Company). The overall head ‘Mr.H’ was in a foul mood, and sitting along with him are his executive deputies ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ and ‘D’. (Note - to promote gender parity, the company and Mr.H specifically have stopped addressing employees as a certain 'Mister' or 'Miss' - many people scratched their heads as to how it would help in gender parity.)

“Have you seen the TRPs? We are just falling every day. Any new ideas for tomorrow's 'Breaking' headlines apart from the regular news, people?” thundered Mr.H. 
 In response, 
A - Sir, yes. My team has a special report on the recent developments in medicines of Drug Resistant Tuberculosis and we could air it...(Everyone looked at A in plain disgust) 
Mr. H - That's all right, A, I'll listen to you later, any others?
B - Why yes, sir. I have an excellent piece. I have interviewed the second cousin of the now estranged husband of a hospital attendant's wife of Country ‘S’. (Everyone except A came to attention and showed great interest. Country ‘S’ was the place where a celebrity passed away recently and already Country ‘S's investigators ruled out any suspicion of the death. None of them bothered even asking whether the hospital attendant actually belonged to the related hospital.)
Mr. H - Ah, now we are talking. Hold that thought. Any ideas to match this?
A - Sir, but that is preposterous. What can we gain from such an interview? In that case, I have an interview from Mr.M, a famous agriculturalist who clearly explained a new suggestion to deal with the problem of Minimum Support Price (MSP) for Red-Gram farmers of Telangana State...(Oh my god, does ‘A’ never stop? Everyone kept wondering with contempt.)
Mr.H - Farmers? The only day we care about farmers is when we remember Lal Bahadur Shastriji. Jai Khet.Or what did he say?
A - It was 'Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan', sir.
Mr. H - Yes, who cares what he said? Right. Now, let's give a chance for others...
C - Yup, Mr.H. Check out what I have - A comparative and detailed analysis of box office collections of all films of 2017 & 2018. We could invite fans of heroes and they could sweat and fight over these statistics. Struggle over Statistics - How's this for a title? (An applauding laugh by everyone except of course ‘A’ followed)
Mr. H - As long as they fight, it'll be good for us. (Chuckles)
A - But, why do we need Headlines on entertainment when we already show entertainment news separately? (A was spoiling all the fun)
Mr. H - That's because...ah...
D - Now, ‘A’. Don't be so pedantic. And speaking of new ideas, I have one myself. I observed that when President ‘Q’ (of a foreign country) smiles in a peculiar way on any given day, then on that day, ‘Mr.Z’ ( a cricketer of our country) is certain to do a century. We could dedicate an entire day to investigate this link... (Everyone except A was amazed)
A - Are you serious, D? Mr.H, if investigation is your only concern, then I did some work, collecting data across various start ups in Bengaluru, interviewing budding entrepreneurs - their views and proposals which could further enhance our Ease of Doing Business Rank or about the NPAs of banks which I did last week....(A was so boring)
Mr. H - Ah, yes thank you A. For now, we'll go with ‘D's thoughts. (A round of clapping and cheering for ‘D’)
A - Mr.H, I can't bear this nonsense. You are ignoring me for too long. For weeks I've been requesting you to at least listen to my proposals. They involve issues of national importance. Medicinal properties of new species of plants discovered or an informed debate of Federalism or even a dispassionate analysis of India-China problems without hyping up Doklam issue - you've never given me a chance. So I Quit. (Much to the relief of others)

The next day, news channel 'Y''s ratings shot through the sky. Every person was glued to the channel's exclusive headlines on a link between President ‘Q's smiling pattern and the century making abilities of ‘Mr.Z’. 

A rather dazed ‘A’ thought to him/herself - 'So, that's the Headlines for the Day...

Place and Date
#16-7-16, Bhramara (Ground Floor), Saladi Jamindar Street, Palakollu (West Godavari) - 534 260, AP on Saturday, 10th of March, 2018.

'So, that's the Headlines for the Day...(Satire/Fiction)

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Who is a Begger?

The great leader clad in khaddar - a man of many words,
He bows before the foreign investors at summits,
He stoops so low every five years before his voters...
Yet, he is not a begger!

A corrupt cop, greedy and shabby - demands money as a right,
A jilted & unrequited lover, blinded & never too bright,
An official of the state, clothed in pride & power - yet likes flight over fight...
An unscrupulous businessman, lobbying lavishly with might -
Yet, none of them are beggers!

And here they are, in this land of Fine arts,
Men cursed by past & spurned by future,
Who run pillar to post, like ruined relics.
Whose once cherished art is now a crime,
Whose very existence is a matter of shame!

Yes - let us congratulate ourselves! Because we caught the real beggers.

1. Place and date
@ - Advocates Colony, Street no.5, Himayat Nagar, Hyderabad, Telangana.
On - 4th of January, 2018.

2. 'Who is a Begger?' (poem) 
Today, I've seen a picture (as above) in The Hindu, where traditional Sankranthi based artists like Gangireddu melam (DuDu basavanna) were arrested and charged with the 'Prevention of Beggers Act 1977' read with rules thereon (ammended 2010).

Such a treatment only brings out the state's arbitary nature in dealing with artists. Just a few days back, during the Global Telugu Conference, aren't all these so called 'fine arts' displayed as a source of pride?

Pic credits - The Hindu

Monday, 1 January 2018

బామ్మ జ్ఞాపకం

జనవరి 2వ తారీకున మా బామ్మగారి సంవత్సరీకం. సరిగ్గా జనవరి 1, 2010న వారు కాలం చేయాడం జరిగింది. నాకు వూహ తెలిసిన నాటి నుండి (అంతకన్నా ముందు నుంచే) మా బామ్మ నడవ లేక మంచం పట్టింది. నాన్నగారు, ఎన్నో రకాల వైద్యాలు, వైద్యులను సంప్రదించినా లాభం లేకపోయింది. అయితే బామ్మ మటుకు ఎప్పుడూ చాలా సరదాగా ఉండేది మాతో. చాలా ధైర్యంగా, నవ్వుతూ  ఉండేది.
రోజూ లేచి, మా అమ్మ తో 'గీతా , కొంచెం కాఫి చుక్క ఉంటే ఇవ్వవే' అనేది. 'కాఫీ చుక్క ' అన  గానే భలే నవ్వు వచ్చేది. మా బామ్మ అవసరాలకు ప్రత్యేకంగా 'ఆది లక్ష్మి' అనే ఆవిడ ఉండేది.

స్నానం తర్వాత నేను ఈనాడు పేపర్ తీసుకుని, మా బామ్మ కు వార్తలు చదివి వినిపించేవాడిని. మా బామ్మ ఏమో నేను చదివే వార్తలు, ప్రాపంచిక విషయాలు గురించి కాకొండ , నా తెలుగు ఉచ్చారణ గురించే ఎక్కువ పట్టించుకునేది. 'చేపట్టిన ' అనే మాటను ఎప్పుడు నేను 'చపట్టినా' అని పలికేయేవాడిని. అది కరక్ట్ చెయ్యాలి అని బామ్మ పట్టు పట్టి మరీ ఆ మాట వచ్చిన వార్తలను నా చేత ఇంకా గట్టిగ చదివించేది. అలాగే ఒక సారి నేను స్కూల్ మారినప్పుడు తెలుగు అక్షరాలు రాసుకు రమన్నారు హోమ్ వర్క్ లాగ . అప్పుడు నాకు బామ్మా వల్లనే అంతరించిపోయిన కొన్ని తెలుగు అక్షరాలు (ఆలు, ఆలూ ) గురించి తెలిసింది.

అలా ఇప్పటికి 'చేపట్టిన ' అనే మాట విన్నప్పుడల్లా నాకు మా బామ్మే గుర్తుకు వస్తుంది. 

1. Place and Date
@ - Bhrama Apartments (Ground Floor), #16-7-16, Saladi Jamindar Street, Palakollu (West Godavari), Andra Pradesh - 534 260
On - Monday, 1st of January, 2018.

2.  బామ్మ జ్ఞాపకం 
మా బామ్మ కి . శే . భ్రమరాంబ ( 1929 - 2010) గురించి ఒక చిన్న జ్ఞాపకం .
A small memory, in fond remembrance of my Grandmother (Paternal)

Saturday, 9 December 2017

The Curious Case of the Mummy of Hyderabad

The chill of the morning was gone. A sudden surge of sunshine was vital to get things done during winter. And so, it was, a sudden raise in temperature. Such baffling inconsistencies in the weather of the Deccan, within a day would scare a farmer. But for a student, they did ensure an encouraging sign of things to come. The workers at the great Public Gardens of Nampally toiled hard - the image of the city was important, more than anything else. After the Global Entrepreneurship Summit & the opening of the Metro, the city is about to host the World Telugu Conference on 15th of December. And I asked one such toiling worker, the way to the Museum.

Within the sprawling Public Gardens lies an old building, housing the Telangana State Archeological Museum. The Piece de Resistance of this museum is an old Mummy - the likes of which scared me as a kid when I visited it as a school going boy. But now, I was no longer a boy to be scared. And so, once again, I stared into the glass ceiling.

Egyptians, like many other civilizations had a firm belief of life after death. However, they took this passion to rituals of epic proportions. All Emperors, Queen consorts and Royalty, after death were preserved as mummified bodies. All vital organs were separately preserved in separate jars, and elabarote rituals followed where the ancient gods of Egypt like 'Ra, Seth, Horis, Anubis' were invoked to protect the body till the soul reaches the Egyptian Eden.

About the mummified body, it was not even 5 feet long, and was assumed to be that of the daughter of the VI Pharoah of Ptolemaic Egypt (c.300-100 BCE). Allegedly, she died young, aged around 16-18 years. There was, virtually, no information about the name of this once Princess of Egypt. The way this mummy made to Hyderabad is a tale of Luck and grandeur of the Nizams. Nazeer Nawaj Jung, the son-in-law of Mir Mahboob Ali Khan (VI Nizam of Hyderabad) brought the mummy for an allegedly throw away price of 1,000 Pounds in London, and then, gifted it to the Nizam. Thus, did the mummified body of the Princess of Egypt reach this Museum of Hyderabad.

As I stepped down, I was fascinated by the Mummy who could've once walked on the banks of the Nile alive. And now, this Mummy could'nt hear the ambient & fiery sound of the new Metro Rail just few feet away. Or can she?

1.Place and Time
@ - Dr YS Rajasekhara Reddy Telangana State Museum, Public Gardens, Nampally, Hyderabad, Telangana
On - Wednesday, 6th of December, 2017.

2. Subject -
"The Curious Case of the Mummy of Hyderabad" on the Mummified Body of a supposedly Ptolemaic Egyptian Princess preserved at the Museum.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Be Like Buffon


(For the first time since 1958, Italy failed to qualify for the Football World Cup to be held in Russia, 2018. One of the greatest goal-keepers & inspiring footballers of all time, Italy's own Gianluigi Buffon retired from International Football. The Poem is a tribute to him and his inspiring presence in the Global football arena for almost 22 years.)

Not always does man's valiant efforts yield results,
Not in every tale does success follow struggle. 
In a game of Genius, chance intervenes and strikes...
The tables get turned, bringing all troubles. 

But when the Azzuri's own numero uno takes guard, 
Standing tall at the citadel of Juventes and Italy's defence, 
Goal-keeping seems an art & skill much like the verse of the bard, 
Many duels emerge in a team's game in a strictly speaking sense.
An example - In 2006, a flying push to deny Zidane's header in Berlin,
Laurels and awards, 175 appearances, consistently saving...
Beyond a mad rush of statistics, the control and the gentle grin, 
Being honest to the game and not to winning or losing.

Too much to learn and get inspired from one of the greatest goal-keepers of all time!
Still, times change and legends weep, and all that's good comes to an end. 
Those acrobatic saves and that inspiring presence shall be missed for nostalgia is not a crime.
When life kicks at you, be like Buffon and say - "I'll stop but not bend." 

Place & Date
Tuesday, 14th of November, 2017.
#16-7-16, Bhramara Ground Floor, Saladi Jamindar Street, Palakollu, West Godavari, Andhra Pradesh - 534 260.

"Be Like Buffon" (Tribute/Poem)
Gianluigi "Gigi" Buffon (born 28 January 1978) is an Italian professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper. He captains Serie A club Juventus, and formerly also captained the Italy national team. He is widely regarded by players, pundits and managers to be one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time, and, by some, to be the greatest ever. Buffon is known for his "outstanding shot-stopping" and for being "a vocal organizer of the defence and a key dressing room personality"

Picture source