Today has been one of the most memorable days of my life! And this was made possible by not one or two but over 200 special people! People who loved you though they didn’t know who you are. People without prejudice, open minds and with smiles that humbles and mellows you down.

“Wonder la, here we come!” was an initiative taken up by the BEC (Bangalore Expatriate Club). It was a trip today, to Wonder la with about 250 children from SRMAB, a school for blind kids and SUKRUPA, a school for underprivileged children. All the credit for this day goes mainly to Barbara (BEC), the lady of the day who planned, coordinated and made this event a big success! Of course, lots of credit to the volunteers and contributors too ;)

We started by meeting at Wonder la by 10 in the morning. After brief introduction to the wonderful people and volunteers for the day we engaged ourselves in distributing t-shirts to the children, sponsored by ATKINS. They formed groups with whom we mingled for the rest of the day and had a crazy time! The kids just loved it! Their enthusiasm was unlike what I had expected. They knew a lot about the place and some of them had been there before. They wanted to go everywhere… to the elephant ride, to the rain dance, the merry-go-round and some rides whose names, I still fail to remember. We were all more then glad to take them there. Also, I know Kannada with which the kids were very comfortable and spoke to me freely. How I just wish the others could understand how thankful they were to us. Some of them hugged us or thanked us for literally every ride! Wow, what an experience the day was!

Introspect – is what I did many a times today.  I felt privileged to have myself being normal.  Just imagine yourself without any one part of your body. Any One Part. On my way to the changing room, I saw some children facing a wall and standing, holding each other. Surprised, I asked them why they were there only to realize that they had lost trail of their group and didn’t know which direction to go as they were visually challenged. How far can you go with your eyes closed? And how far will we go with our eyes closed?! We need to open up, accept the world as one and put in our 2 cents to make this world a better place for all to live in.

Thank you all for making me feel the way I did today. Again my special thanks and warm regards to Barbara, Roberts, Sreejita, Jenny, Niel, the children, others whose names I don’t remember (please forgive me) and of course Gunar, a great musician and an even greater chess player, through whom I got to know such wonderful people. For any corrections or additions, please feel free to add it in the comments.

It was bound to happen. With light security, poor enforcement of law and laid back attitude of the Bangalore police, Bangalore would surely be targeted sooner or later. I started writing this post when I heard of one bomb blast near Madiwala, by now the count has gone up to six! I hope this is not the signs of things to come… God forbid.

I have just passed Mysore road a few minutes back and am happy to be in front of my PC in the office, but still unsure if there could be bomb nearby…

Wonder why some people engage in such mindless activities? As of now one woman has died and more than 20 injured.  What will anybody achieve? Reason for the blasts – people are running their imagination wild. I am getting calls every 5 minutes from one or the other concerned person. Some say its the terrorists at work and some say it is anti BJP sentiments being projected. In any case why violence? Lives of innocent people at stake, who actually won’t be able to solve anything.

I have been searching on Google and other sites. Not much news about the blasts. Shops and establishments nearby are closing. I will remain in my Office for any place is just as insecure as any other place in Bangalore…

One fine day, I thought of improving my profile by doing a foreign language course. Out of the many options that I had – French, German, Japanese etc I settled for German Language. After a few visits to some language training institutes, I ventured into Max Muller Bhavan, Bangalore. Even before I had spoken to the person in charge, Ms. Jayanthi, I had decided to join there! Just by looking at the place you could swear about their professionalism. It has a well stocked library of books, German magazines, newspapers and not to forget, movies and videos in VCDs and DVDs. Neat classrooms with well furnished equipments, well trained teaching staff, a German cafe (Café Max) and loads of recommendations left me with little choice! The course fees for the weekend batch that I have joined is Rs. 8500/- (About 145 Euro) for the A1 level.

Good and positive vibes, from people and places draws you towards them. Germany, as I know is very open to Ayurveda and Indian culture. It respects both modern technology and the ancient knowledge of civilizations. We have reasonably good business and some very loyal and fantastic customers from Germany. I hope this course helps me to interact with them better and maybe lead me to do business there.

More on Max Muller Bhavan after I have attended a few classes! Wish me luck – its been a long time since I studied!

Getting into long hours of work, I did not blog for over a month! I have over 10 pictures for which I thought of blogging but just could not squeeze the time for it. Today is a lucky day for blogging as we have a string of holidays due to the festival season and I am down with Conjunctivitis or ‘Madras eye’ (Donno why they call it so!). A friend of mine from Kolkatta adds that it is call as ‘Jai Bangla’ there! If only they know about the pain in the eye!

Links to my eye condition!

Hope it does not spread by blog reading! I have been successful in passing out this condition to my Dad though! Anyhow, this helps me in closing my blogging gap and reinforces my commitment to what I love doing – blogging!

Heavy loadPity the animalRelieved at last!15 Men do the job!

In the hi-tech city of Bangalore, there still exists the old fashioned & crude way of using animals for jobs beyond their capacities. In the pictures above, the poor animal fell many times over as it could not carry the load. The load was ultimately pushed up the slope by about 15 people!

Personally, I feel using animals for reasonable farm duties is fine, but loading them with heavy industrial goods such as welding electrodes, iron and steel is severe injustice to the mute animals. I hope animal activists and concerned agencies move towards a ban on using animals for such purpose, especially in the city of Bangalore, known for its technological leadership and industrial development.

BTW, this happens to be my first photo-blog! Like it?

Phew! Its been very hectic, the last 15 days or so. I had a news portal to be launched – and the Indian version of my Ayurveda Store – Work took 25 hours a day and I still managed to squeeze a few hours for food, sleep and my Sunday morning games! All that I could not do was to update my blog! Here I am now, free to write what strikes me most.

What strikes me the most at the moment is that after a forth night of activity, wheres the result? Another few projects launched, but where’s the result?! Day and night worked for what? Thought about it for some time and got the answer:

It’s not what you start that gives you the results; its the sustained, sincere efforts and interest in what you do that drives results! What say?

Being in the web hosting & domain name registration industry, I have been asked this many times over by people from various backgrounds – novice bloggers to seasoned experts. Not because its my business, but due to many good reasons I recommend it. The most prominent advantage & reasons being the following which I will elaborate upon in my later posts:

  • It gives you your own identity.
  • You are not on the mercy of the blogs provider and fear of getting your blog deleted or suspended because of something you did or didn’t do!
  • Having your own independent blog site gives you more options to make money and earn online.
  • The best blog software packages are open source and hence free and totally customizable! Your cost towards the same is next to zero.
  • The cost involved towards domain name registration and web space is very less, that too can be recovered within a month or two by a basic blogger! (PS: Ask me for all such requirement you have!)
  • You have the freedom to add a forum, shopping cart, create a community or do nearly just about anything you can think up from your own domain or blog!
  • You can customize just about anything on your blog, the look, feel etc by themes & plugins, which are available free and again open source for you to modify.
  • And finally as Mike put in “if you are actively working to get back links (and you should be) you will want those to go to a domain that you control. If you create a high PR site you have an asset you can sell.”
  • A few more advantages, I cant think of now as I have started sneezing due to dust allergy!

Well, anyways if you get more advantages on having your own blog to add please feel free to put it in the comments for the community. Questions and controversies are welcome too!

When I started, there were a lot of things going on in my mind. What to write? When to write?! et all. As I write this tenth blog post, I am encouraged by a few things:

  • A small amount of money I made!
  • I finally got something creative to do apart from my business!
  • Got an informal place to catch up with my customers and friends.
  • I get to help people to make money online, genuinely.
  • Interact with a band of bloggers and be called one!

There are a lot more advantages I find out of blogging, but I wouldn’t want to pump all of them here in one go and take a toll on your patience! In fact I am planning to go full steam with what I intended to do part-time. Me thinks I should start a section on the city I live & love – Bangalore! Also in the pipeline is a section of forwarded mails and SMS! Generally, they are an annoyance, but some of them are really good, encouraging or just entertaining!

Vikas Sharma