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Home Sweet Home

Monday, August 31, 2009


... life's just worth living. It really is...

Friday, August 28, 2009

Shortest Fairy Tale In The World

I was reading this post by Hijinx a while ago, which contains three short stories she had written. I liked them. She has some talent despite her claiming otherwise just to be modest, I think. Anyway, that reminded me of another short story I've heard which is the shortest fairy tale in the world and perhaps the best as well.
එකමත් එක රටක ඉතා ලස්සන රාජ කුමාරියක් ජීවත් වූවාය. දිනක් ඇය ලඟට අසු පිටින් පැමිණි කුමාරයෙක් ඔයා මා කසාද බඳිනවාදැයි අසුවේය. තරහෙන් ඔරවා අහක බලාගත් කුමරිය ගත් කටටම බෑ කීවාය. ඉන් පසු කුමාරයා චිරාත් කාලයක් සතුටින් ජීවත් විය.
Loosely translated;
Once upon a time there lived a beautiful princess. One day, a prince came to her on a horse and proposed to her, but she refused point blank. Then the prince lived happily ever after.

Happy Weekend fellas!


My rebuttal to Mark Richardson's opinion on Murali | Sri Lanka Cricket

No, not really mine.

It's written by Mr. Dinal Gooneratne - well OK I really don't know him but he seems to be a top bloke. Anyway, follow the following link and it's worth reading and a real diplomatic go get lost to that useless prick Mark Richardson.

My rebuttal to Mark Richardson's opinion on Murali | Sri Lanka Cricket

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Facebook is more important than Shakira's body

And I promise this is not blogstituition, as there have been some talk going on about it lately. Will show you the solid facts right now and prove my point.

Up until very recently, until mid June to be precise, this is the post that got me most hits from Google search. Just go ahead and Google something like Shakira's Body and my post comes right up there. And you'll be amazed how many people want to know about her body anyway. I used to get - I still do - at least 5 or 6 hits a day, usually more from Google for that post. These girls, I tell you. They can't just stop comparing can they? Do we men ever - and I mean EVER - go type something like Brad Pitt's Body on Google. We are content with who we are, aren't we? Round is a shape, after all.

But in June I put up these two posts. This and this. And hell, those two posts get WAY more hits that Shakira. Well, the post about her. I don't know how many hits she gets, really. Anyway, just go here and have a look if you're not sure - this is one of the places where I go to, to get my daily dose of laughter as well. Sometimes you wouldn't believe what people have to search for! Just right now I can see there somebody wanted to know What's going to happen to you this year? quiz and ended up here. I can only tell that he/she is going to be pissed after reading my post. But that was totally OK compare to this: facebook status messages to fuck with your boyfriend. Jeez these girls! I feel for the poor guy.

A bit unrelated, but some guy (or girl) Googled can i look at my mom's computer remotely? and ended up here! I don't know whether to laugh or not.


For those who haven't seen it already, Dee has put up her Video Collage yesterday and it's really nice. Go and have a look fellas.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Why Are Aussies Being Hated So Much?

It was the 9th of June this year. The day after Sri Lanka kicked Aussies out of the ICC T20 World Cup, in grand fashion. I wake up, and log in to FB. Lo' behold, my homepage is showered with status messages, link and comments about the match from Well done Sri Lanka to Get lost Aussie fags, and there was even one saying Well done SL for winning the greatest cricket match!. Really? A T20 match? Why? The funny thing was half the people who had put 'em up don't usually watch a match if their life depends on it, and knows shit about cricket. Alright, still let's say it's OK to put a message. But the thing is, on those days - before and after - we played a shitload of matches and nobody bothered to put up a message. We won better, harder matches in more grand style, but nobody gave a shit. But here, all hell breaks loose. Why?

It's because Aussies lost - not because we won.

It always amuses me the fact that how much people love to hate them. Seriously, if Aussies lose a game somewhere, even if it's not against Sri Lanka, people still take notice. Of course it is a common thing in all sports that people love to see underdogs win, but here it's not just that. Why, I wondered many a time.

For one, and perhaps more than anything else it is because they are true champions, me thinks. Everyone envied them, and even might have admired, but mostly secretly. I remember back then in Sri Lanka it was almost seen as a crime to support Aussies or say something good about Warne. But hell, I LOVED their cricket, the way they played and the fact that they'd play so fucken hard to win. Steve Waugh was, and is, my favorite. He was a real gentleman off the field, but a goddamn bastard on it. He'd play as hard as he could and a bit more, would sledge, let his bowlers bowl bouncers after bouncer at batsmen, and take many on his body just to save a game. What would he have not done to win one. They played aggressive, good cricket and took cricket to a new level where every one's still catching up - or rather trying to catch up. Now they have fallen to the 4th place in ICC rankings, but that's just because they've failed to maintain the standards they themselves set. Not because others went past them - they'd have a hard time doing that I'm sure.

I'm sure all the other teams wished they could play the way Aussies did, and since they couldn't, they and their fans hated 'em. I've talked with many Sri Lankans who hated them asking why and nobody has given me a satisfactory answer thus far. Some would say they brought spirit of the game into disrepute. Hell, I still am having hard time understanding so as to why cricket is considered the gentleman's game. Gimme a break. This is a game where English - so called gentlemen - bowled at Bradman and Co's heads to win the Ashes. At a time protective helmets are yet to be invented. Some bowled under-arm to prevent opposition winning. A certain Charlie Grippith of West Indies injured more people with his hostile bowling than the number of matches he played. A long history of drug cheats. Ball tampering. The list goes on. Or others would say they sledged. Really? Tell me a team who doesn't? It was just the fact that they were too good at it. Sledging was always a big part of cricket - it's just it wasn't made to look such a big deal back then. Hell I think cricket would be poorer without sledging. It certainly makes a cricketer tough bastard, which is essential in particular to be a good Test player. Test cricket is not for the faint hearted. If they sledge, get back at them instead of crying about it. Arjuna did it so well that they completely stopped sledging him. Sachin hit Warne and Co all over the park mercilessly, they never sledged him again. That's the way to respond to it - not whining about it. Or sledge them back, like Sanga does. It's no big deal, do whatever you want on the field and sort them out before you come off it.

Back in the 70's and even 80's, Windies had a similar team to that of the Aussies during the last decade. They too dominated the world cricket back then, like the Aussies did lately but they were never really hated the way Aussies were. Why? Were they particularly nice and all compared to the Aussies? Perhaps a bit, but not much. They too were arrogant and aggressive. They too played hard and took it to the opposition. They too were bastards, to put it simply. But why weren't they hated so much? I think it has something to do with the era they played in. Aussies were actually unfortunate to have their best team in an era of information, where cricket is seen live, there are millions of new sources and people saw things as they happened. Back in the day, only the people who went to the ground saw what happened, and still they couldn't really hear what players talked. No microphones, no close up videos. Disputes were there, but you had to wait till the next morning, until it was published on paper to know what happened, and usually things are died down by then. Not anymore. Now people know things as they happen, and one wrong word you say and you're doomed. Media and journalists played a big part in this making cricket a bit too professional game these days. And what with being the best team on earth and all, Aussies were at the centre of attention, and one word out of line and they were practically crucified. That was the difference, and boy it is a huge difference.

Today, Aussies don't get the credit they deserve for taking cricket to a new level, because of the way they did it. Or rather, because the others couldn't do it the way they did it.



Monday, August 24, 2009

Another Weekend Goes By...

In between getting stoned, playing some badminton and a midnight bowling session, not to mention a lot of sleep, weekend went past before you know it. Or I should have said before I know it. It was fun, but seriously, it's time we have three day weekends. Bowling was the fun bit. We had two teams and the agreements were made as to losers would buy ice cream to the winning team. Of course we won and had ice cream. At midnight.


England regained the Ashes, and PR is being a Kalu Suddha with pumped up over it and all. On a serious note though, I will miss Freddie Flintoff. Of course he would continue to play ODIs and T20s, but it's not the same as in Tests. I'm going to miss his brutal and brilliant spells, the ones that make you all awed and inspired. I love his pose too, the one he so theatrically gets into after getting a wicket. Cricket seriously needs some more lager than life characters like him.

Talking about cricket, Dilly's two knocks were amazing too. Hope he'd make sure that they are not one offs and continue doing the same. We are seriously one opener away from being the best Test nation.

Also I feel for the Aussies. I know lot of people don't like them, but I loved their cricket. They played hard. They played to win and they took cricket to a new level during the past decade or so, and nobody still haven't been able to match them. They are not the #1 ranked team anymore because they have fallen short of the very standards they set - not because others went past them. It'd take a special team to match what they had done in the past decade.


I watched New York, a new Hindi movie by Yash Chopra. I think so. It was a pretty OK movie. No stupid songs where the guy and the chick run around trees and such, nor there were dishum dishum type fight scenes. It talks about how people of Asian descent - specially Muslims - got harassed after 9/11 in detention centres like Guantanamo Bay. How they were systematically rounded up and harassed and all. The plot was good and the movie was watchable except for the climax. I mean, why do the Indians fuck up all the good stories in the end? They surely try to make things a bit too dramatic and fail miserably. Hope the ending was better.
I downloaded it from here, a Sinhala fellow blogger and he provides the links to torrents as well. You must check it out if you haven't already. Good place to find torrents, without having to go through torrent sites and all the comment to check if they are not fakes.


Happy Week ahead fellas!


Sunday, August 23, 2009

How to use a Time Machine

Clever, I'd say.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

What does it take to be happy?

Choose to see the cup half full as opposed to seeing it half empty. Trust me, it works.

Over and out.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Delayed Weekend Post

Why do I keep putting pathetic headings all the time? Not to mention the useless posts. Lack of creativity. Lack of imagination. Inherent lousiness. All of that, perhaps. Meh.


OK the weekend was fun though. First, to compensate for the lack of sleep the past week - yes I couldn't get a minute's sleep for three consecutive nights - slept well past noon on Saturday and then before you know it, the day was gone. Why is it that you always feel the five weekdays like five months and then the weekend is gone before you know it. How cool would it have been if we had three-day-weekends and only four weekdays? Most probably then we would be asking for four-day-weekends and three weekdays. Anyway, on Sunday we went to a cricket match. To celebrate their national day (or is it the independence day?) the Embassy of Pakistan here had organized a cricket match and they invited us to play against them. The ambassador and the likes were present, and we were treated nicely both on and off the field. Off the field, with some good food and drinks, not to mention being so nice and all. On the field, with sixes and fours to their heart's content. We bowled so crap right from the beginning, they were like 66/1 after 6 overs. Finally we managed to get them all out for 160 something but it was always going to be a bit too much considering it was a T20 match. Then we batted like 11 Mubaraks would. Need I say more?

The presentation ceremony followed was typically Asian. More dignitaries than players, them getting more awards than players and the whole thing lasting longer than the match itself. And they took so many photos I'm sure nobody, in my whole life, bothered to photograph me so much. Not even my mom and dad or even the ex. Pakis are nice, come to think of it. And finally, after so many thank you speeches we managed to escape their hospitality and headed for a restaurant to have some beer. There's nothing like a cold beer after a hard day's work, especially when you got thrashed like that.


These Sri Lankan mothers are a dangerous breed, I tell you. Here is a conversation took place last night. After the usual chit chat.
Dangerous Mother : So, can't you visit SL this time as well?

Poor Me : I told you ne mom, I don't have enough leaves. No point coming for ten or so days. I'll come next year.

DM : But then you'll be close to 30!

PM : Umm... yes... you can't stop aging.

DM : But think! You should be married by then.

PM : *Rolling eyes*
I knew it'd come to this.

DM : Shut up. Don't you try to avoid this conversation every time. When are you going to get married?

PM : Mom, I'm fine the way I am! Why do you have to put a deadline that I should get married before this and this date. Gimme a break. I'll marry when I want.

DM : But that's the only worry I have. If you get married and settle down I can die with peace of mind.

PM : Oh don't be stupid. You still have time before worrying about dying.

DM : But who knows. See, I'll be sixty soon and I might die any day. And if I do, I'll have to die with the pain knowing that you still aren't married!

PM : Umm...
OK mom, bye!

What exactly are you supposed to say to something like that, really?
These mothers have a way of working you.
God help me!


Where the hell is Wijitha? It's been over a month since he last posted, and I really miss him. His blog is something unique and I always enjoyed reading him, it being one of the few blogs I've read from post #1 to the last. He did have a unique perspective on some things, and his writings were really good. And fun. Too bad I didn't bother to get his contacts, so if any of you do have, please send 'em to me or at least drop him a message and ask what the hell is going on.


Just as MJ predicted here, New Zealand continue to be crap and MJ continue to bash minnows. NZ that is. Cool eh?

OK guys, me off.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Translating Cricket

Apart from the game that is cricket, there is also a language called cricket too. It is of course spoken by cricketers, coaches, management and even the fans sometimes as you may have guessed already. Let me elaborate. Say, you're a top notch player of a Test team and you have a Bangladesh or Zimbabwe tour coming up. Of course you know that they are going to be shit, that you are going to beat them one way or the other and that you don't really need to worry too much about it. But of course you can't say that to the media or whoever else that asks you something about it. So, instead, you say something like;
"We are aware of the fact that they don't have a great record against us, but still we can't afford to relax or take things for granted. They do posses a good team that is hungry for success, so we will have to be at our best and play to our potential"
But, this is what you really wanted to say;
"We know that they are a shit team, they have done shit against us in the past and we know that it's not going to be any different this time either. So we gonna party hard, go on some shopping and sight seeing before the series starts, and then go there and give them a good spanking. Of course we're not telling you that though"
That, my friends, is Cricket the language and what it is sounds like when it's translated to English.

Now, a New Zealand side has come here again and the first Test starts today. On the eve of the match, Mahela Jayawardene, or MJ as we like to call him has written a piece to crapinfo here using Cricket instead of English. So, for you guys I translated it into English.

It's been a busy and satisfactory season for us so far, and up next we have New Zealand, a team I really like playing. I got my first century against them, in Galle, in 1998. I have a couple of very good ODI hundreds against them as well, and the one in the World Cup semi-final two years ago was an especially memorable knock. Hopefully I can continue to have the same kind of success over the next month or so.
We had to play a shit load of matches this season and we've done tremendously well so far and luckily we have NZ coming up next, a shit team that I really like bashing. You know, I scored a majestic century - my first - against them in 98, and since them I've done really well against them. Remember guys, I scored one in the World Cup semi final as well. I'm good you see. I'm really good at minnow bashing and hope that I can continue it this time too.

It's not just because I have had success against them that I like playing New Zealand. They are tough opponents, they play hard and keep coming at you, and they are a very tough team to beat. We know New Zealand might lack in terms of superstars and big names, but they have a very good bunch of players who play very well as a unit and feed off each other's success, and they can't be taken for granted. We need to beware of that talent and concentrate on doing well.
But it's not just because I've done excellently well against them that I like playing them. They really are a shit team and even lesser players than I am can spank them more or less the way we want. See, they don't really have any players we should be concerned about, so we can afford to relax a bit and have fun.

It's unfortunate that we haven't played New Zealand as often as we would have liked to. It's the same with some other countries as well. We need some sort of system where we play cricket on a consistent basis against all opposition, home and away.
It so bad we haven't had the opportunity to play NZ more often. If it was the case we could have bashed them a few more times and I could have scored a few more centuries and up my average. I think the ICC must have a system where we get our fair share of minnow bashing.

It would have been great to play a three-Test series, but then it's a long season. We have already played a series against Pakistan, and have a lot of one-day cricket and a number of other tournaments around the corner, so it's difficult to get all this into the picture.
As a Test cricketer I am compelled to say that it's good if we had a three Test series, but fuck we played so many matches and I'm tired now. We barely saved our asses against Pakistan because, well, they are Pakistan and did a Pakistan. Otherwise we would have gotten our asses handed to us. Either way, we're tired.

The tight schedule means that we have to switch off from Pakistan mode and on to New Zealand fairly quickly. But it's not that difficult; it's all about mental preparation. There are a lot of positives to be taken from the Pakistan series, and we need to translate that into good form in this series. We need to recognise that New Zealand is a different challenge, identify that difference, prepare for it and go ahead and enjoy ourselves.
See, the schedule is so tight we couldn't even take a breath. Just when the Pakis left, the Kiwis had arrived. Luckily it's NZ and we don't have to worry too much. As I said, they are useless so we can afford to relax a bit.

Going into the series as favourites involves a certain set of challenges. We need to guard against being complacent, and do the things that we have been doing well for the last two or three years. We have played some really good Test cricket, and we have to continue doing that. It's about doing the things that matter right: building partnerships, building pressure, winning sessions. If we concentrate on doing that, the results will come our way.
I really hate the media though. Already we're being termed favorites - not that we didn't know that - and the buggers would start bashing us in no time if we loose a game. I don't think we will, but even if we loose a few wickets quickly, they are gonna be on our backs. So we might need to watch our backs a bit.

New Zealand's Test batting line-up is a bit inexperienced but there is a lot of talent in their team. They have good quality spinners backed up by some really good fast bowlers. So it should be an interesting challenge, one that we are looking forward to.
NZ batting line up is crap. There is hardly an experienced guy - they are full of little kids whom we think we can have a good time spanking. No game at all. Did I tell you that I love minnow bashing?
The last time they came here they managed to draw both Test matches. It was a disappointing result for us; we had the opportunities but we didn't convert them. We realise now what mistakes we made, and this is a good chance to correct them. We are a more mature team now, and we have played together for quite some time, and the guys have been playing some really good Test cricket.
The last time they were here we should have won but we fucked up. Oh hell I remember what people said back then. We better not do the same again. Hope everyone will get together and get it over with.

There are a few New Zealand players we haven't seen a lot of, but there is video analysis; and we have inputs from a few of our A-team players, who were in New Zealand a year and a half ago, and are in our senior squad now.
They have a few new guys in their team whom we haven't played against, but them being Kiwis I bet that they are the same as their senior lousy bunch. Our A team guys who toured there last year told us the same.

What we do know for sure is that Daniel Vettori is going to be the biggest threat for us: a talented spinner and their most experienced player. His experience will come handy in our conditions. Brendon McCullum, Jacob Oram and Ross Taylor are the other guys who they will rely on. Those are the standouts for us.
Only thing is we gonna have to bat a bit carefully against Vettori. The bastard bowls good sometimes, but hope we'll do good this time. The other players in their team I know are Brendon McCullum, Jacob Oram and Ross Taylor. Others, I don't know the names.

We have seen a lot of Jesse Ryder and Taylor. We know that they are a bundle of talent. So there have been plans drawn for them, how to control them. That's a great challenge for our bowlers, to be bowling against good young talent.
Though they are shit, lately Jesse Ryder and Taylor had done well against some good teams so we asked our bowlers to get rid of them somehow. If those bastards bat well we'd have to do the same and knowing how crappy our batting is, from time to time, I really don't want that.

For us, we have only had good news leading up to the Tests. Tillakaratne Dilshan, Prasanna Jayawardene and Muttiah Muralitharan are all fit and available, which makes for a happy selectorial headache. Luckily the headache is Kumar Sangakkara's, not mine! As selectors and captains, you don't mind having to make such decisions. The headache of the bad kind is the one when you don't have the guys out there. No doubt we will have some tough calls to make: whether to drop Ajantha Mendis or Rangana Herath, how to fit Dilshan and Prasanna in, and so on. But as a team we don't want to shy away from them. We made tough calls against Pakistan too. We will make decisions that we think are right for the team, against the given opposition, and under the match conditions at hand.
Luckily we have Murali back in and it's a relief after how pathetic Mendis was the last time. PJ and Dilshan are also coming into the team, so guess it'll be OK even if I fail a couple of times. With all this Sanga is going to have a hell of a time picking a team - who to leave out an all. Damn I'm happy I don't have to make the call anymore. I still remember the ass whipping I got for dropping Marvan in the last World Cup. Over to you now, Sanga.

Hope Mahela will personally thank me for helping him express himself so that he doesn't have to put his ass on the line. Couple of thousand dollars will do, Mahela.


Monday, August 17, 2009


The City On Water


Gondola Ride. It was awesome...

The fellow who took us for a ride...

View from top of a bridge

Stuff made from Murano Glass which is something unique to Venice


Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Beauty of Rome

Colosseum. It's so majestic.

It was so huge that even my wide angle lens couldn't capture it in full...

Inside Roman Basilica

Even the colors of McDonald's are changed to fit Rome

Vatican City. The smallest state in the world

Inside Sistine Chapel

"The Last Judgement" by Michelangelo


Friday, August 14, 2009


There is this paper shredder in our office. Well they are in almost every office I guess. You know, inside it there is this basket where all the shredded paper go to right. The one in our office shreds papers to very small rectangular pieces - not just long stripes as some do - and when the bag is full somebody would take it out and keep it near the waste basket. So the cleaning lady would take it away in the evening. But this bag is SO tempting. I fantasise all the time about blowing that bag so that small pieces of paper would fly everywhere. Icing on the cake if I could do it over my boss' head.

To go on the 'foot board' of a train. No not on them in Sri Lanka - I've done that all too often there - but on trains here. While moving the doors are always closed. Always. But wouldn't it just be so awesome, to do it and look at the expressions of other Japs on the train. I'm positive I'd give couple of them mild heart attacks.

Play Poker for real money. In Vegas.

To be someone else. For a day. Oh think of the possibilities! By the way, who else thinks that there are way too many "i"s in "possibilities"? OK seriously, I could create havoc if I could become someone else just for the sake of it. So much fun it would be isn't it? And things won't get any better, if I get to meet myself while being someone else. Dose that make any sense? Oh well.

Date Jessica Alba. Or Angelina Jolie. Or both, preferably.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Italians are somewhat crazy, but Rome and Venice were nice...

Continuing from the last post here.

I forgot to mention one thing about the Thais. Their language. What is it called really? No offense to anyone who use it, but I couldn't really stand it. I mean, hell, it sounded like something in between a badly reciting poem and a welcome speech of the annual prize giving back in our school days. There I was at the duty free shops, just wandering here and there and in almost all the shops the prizes of stuff were in Bhat, which is their local currency. I wanted to know the exchange rate, so asked the shop assistant. She turns to the other lady at the counter and goes;
"Yomwaaaaaaaaa...... hakks omm hana tha kanaaaa?"

"Ugth, un-akht omm meyuuu owaa kaaaaa"
Comes the reply.

I was like WTF, really. And didn't bother asking exchange rates or anything else for that matter thereafter.

OK, then several hours later I arrived at Fiumicino Airport in Rome where my aunt and uncle had come to pick me up. Oh and know what? When the plane landed, almost all the Italians in it started clapping! I was wondering what's that about and for a brief moment thought that maybe a scene from a Hindi movie was taking place there. You know, after all the turns and twists of three and a half hours, at the end the guy and the girl get together and everyone watching starts clapping, right? But then realized that they're actually clapping for the successful landing. Who knows, maybe it's a rare thing in Italy to land without any incidents. They might as well have screamed "We're alive! We're ALIVE!!"

Then, after another hour or so car ride I finally arrived at their house - not an Italian's who clapped, but my aunt's place - and had a great time catching up with them. It was like after a couple or so years that I met them and had loads to talk about. It was a wonderful time. Though I was somewhat tired, didn't want to get any sleep. And later in the day we went out to see some stuff there, one of which was this awesome fountain that I've forgotten the name of. It is said that if you throw a coin to it while wishing something, the said wish will come true. Naturally, both me and my nanga had our wishes so didn't hesitate to go ahead. Can't tell you what it is though, because you're not supposed to tell anyone your wishes. And there were some really beautiful girls and my uncle being the crazy dude he is started taking pictures of me with them so it looked like we were together. But when I tried to return him the favor my aunt appeared out of nowhere and refused point blank to allow it. A point-for why I shouldn't get married - at least for now.

The day after we went to see the Vatican City, which actually is the smallest separate country in the world which is headed by The Pope. And again, there happened a very lucky incident. Ever since I was a kid, I was fascinated by both history and art. History, probably because of my father's influence and art because, well I was a little bit good at it. Thus I have read about and studied the works of great artists of those times, the greats like Michelangelo, Raphael, Picasso and so many others. Of them, I had a special liking for Michelangelo's works for many of them were truly awesome and sort of impossible, if you know what I mean. One of them is The Last Judgement, a true masterpiece done on the altar of the Sistine Chapel. But I had totally forgotten that it was located in Rome, in Vatican at that time, when I suddenly saw a picture postcard of it in a nearby souvenir shop. Then it suddenly dawned on me that it is somewhere close by! Few inquiries were made and we learned that it was a few hundred meters from where we were. Despite my nanga's protests - saying that her feet hurt - I dragged them all there and got to see it. IT WAS AWESOME! Back in the days when I was a child and reading all about it, I never really thought that there would come a day that I'd actually get to see it with my own eyes. It was such a great feeling, to actually see it - feel it. The next day we went to see the Colosseum, which was also another thing that I was always amazed at, and I might have taken hundreds of pictures. It was so huge that even with my wide angle lens I couldn't capture it in whole when I was inside. Such an awesome work of construction it was.

Then a couple of days later we went to Venice. It was so unique. When you come to think of it, there isn't much there to see. Certainly the chapels, cathedrals and all those stuff in Rome are majestic in comparison to what they have there in Venice. It's just water, water and water, but there is something special about it. It's something very hard to describe - you need to feel it. I would love to return there some day. And the Gondola ride was cool. It was indeed something special, Venice was.

All in all, the trip was refreshing, and worth every penny - well, actually Euro I should say - that was spent. It was like coming one of my childhood dreams come true. Rome and Venice were two places that I always wanted to go see since, well ever since I knew them, and now that I've been there wonder when I'd get to go to Egypt. You see, the great pyramids of Egypt, you can't resist them can you?


Monday, August 10, 2009

Luck is a costly thing

This post was started on a notepad (no, not Bill's notepad but a real old fashioned one) - hence my first handwritten post - at the Bangkok airport lounge, and was added more to it on an airplane to Rome, then added some more to it using Bill's notepad later and here I am, completing it on my work PC as usual. Quite an adventurous post eh? Oh and I wasn't quite sure how to spell 'adventurous', so, well luckily we have internet. Right, let's get to the original post then. The post contains present and past tenses mixed up as a result of it spanning several days, but couldn't be bothered to correct them all so excuse that please.

How often do you get an early plane ride rather than them getting delayed? Not too often right? This morning I was at the Narita Airport in Tokyo hoping to board a plane that is going to Bangkok airport, from where I'd take another flight to Rome. The plane was to depart at 10 a.m., so I was at the check-in counter a couple of hours earlier. The cute lady at the counter (her perfume was a bit too strong though) took my reservation, looked at it a while, checked some things on the computer and then turned to me and asked,
"Sir, your flight has a stopover at Phucket Airport before landing at Bangkok, so it'd be like 6 p.m. when you land there. But instead we can give you a direct flight, which will depart at 11 a.m. instead of 10 and will arrive at Bangkok at about 3.30 p.m. Which do you want?"
Is that even a question? I mean, who wants to be stuck on a goddamn plane for so long when you can cut it short about four hours? I gladly accepted it and ended up in a direct flight to Bangkok. Lovely. I usually hate plane rides for two reasons. One, I can't travel business class and the economy class seats - whatever the airlines is - are fucken uncomfortable. Two, I have this problem where I can't sleep on buses, trains, planes etc unless I'm excessively tired or suffering from lack of sleep. And spending several hours on an uncomfortable seat without sleep is torture so was all too glad about the ride being cut short. How lucky I am!

But then, after arriving at Bangkok I was faced with another problem. As planned earlier, I was to arrive there at about half past six thirty and the next flight to Rome was at midnight so I had to wait only about a little more than five hours. I had my iPod and a good book, so it wasn't going to be a problem. But arriving there earlier means I have to stay there for like nine hours, and hell I was tired even with the shorter trip. So tried getting some sleep on a seat at the airport lounge, but I was going nowhere. Hell with it, I thought and got a room at the airport lounge so that I could have a shower and a few hours' proper sleep. Now, when I got the room, I was told that I will get one meal along with the room and was given a card to present to the dining hall when I get it. The card read something like "Breakfast Menu All Day". So I assumed that I was getting a breakfast menu whatever the time I get it. Cheap bastards. Still, something is better than nothing right? So, first had a good shower, then some sleep and at about 8 at night I went to the dining room expecting to have my breakfast. I presented the card to the guy at the bar and he goes like,
"Sir, do you want coffee or tea?"
You've got to understand that these Thai guys' English is pretty bad, add the Thai-ish accent to that and pretty much they are incomprehensible. So I was like,
"Am I not supposed to get some sort of a meal, not just coffee or tea?"
The guy stares at me, then goes, "Tea or coffee, sir?"

Now, people, do not - I repeat, DO NOT - assume things if you don't understand what the other person you're talking to, says. Or if you're not sure if he understand you. I thought, hell maybe the breakfast menu means just tea or coffee, who knows, maybe that's the Thai way. So I said I wanted tea, but hell I was so hungry and wanted to eat something so badly. Therefore, using a mixture of broken English, sign language and pointing at the menu card I ordered some Thai-Chinese-Rice. The guy happily went away and in a couple of minutes brings me a fruit juice, couple of slices of toasted bread and some buns with jam and butter. I was getting confused, thinking maybe the guy didn't understand me so called him and said that I ordered a rice. He
gives me a big smile and says,
"Rice coming sir."

"What's this then?"


No I didn't say that, but so wanted to. I must have looked quite foolish eating a breakfast meal and a fried rice at the same time, at about 8 in the evening. By that time I was wishing that I was not given a direct flight because then in the first place I wouldn't have had to get this stupid
room. Thus would have saved me some money and the embarrassment. By the way, Thai Fried Rice is quite good. You must try sometimes, though I advice you to listen carefully while ordering it.

Anyway, after much adventures - well, not really - I boarded the flight to Rome. By the way, why is it that boarding pass called that? I mean, I know it is the pass given when you board the plane and all, but for all the fancy-ness and posh-ness at the airports, they could have picked a more cooler name. This time, I was on an aisle seat, and on the two seats next to me there was and old couple. Funny accent. A bit too polite but grumpy at the same time. Evidently British. Now, again luck was on my side. This time the flight was going to be 11 hours, and I was hoping against hope that I'd get an empty seat next to me. Though it wasn't to be, the guy in front of the Brit couple leaned his seat back to the fullest and the old fella got pissed off. So did I because the guy in front of me did the same. So after a while, I got up and asked an air hostess whether I could find another seat. She came back in a minute and led me to a seat next to a gorgeous chick! She sure was. We exchanged smiles, me hoping to exchange some more later, like a phone number (huh, you thought something else didn't you?) and I settled down on the seat. Just then, the hostess comes back and says,
"Sir, the couple next to your seat left to another seat. Do you want to go there?"

I was made to chose between this hot chick and a good night sleep. But I thought, what the hell, she'd leave after arriving in Italy anyway, I'd get a sleep rather and went back to my seat. And had full three seats to myself and had a really comfortable time there. See, luck is costly!

More about the time spent in Italy and pics in the next post.

Happy Week Fellas!