Monday, March 10, 2008


T4 is the poorer cousin of T3 at Heathrow. All of 3 shops at the departures, one chemist - Boots, one coffee shop - Nero, and one book/ newsagent - WHSmith.

British Airways owns this terminal, and HSBC has selected it to be the target of all its adverts. And outside the airport terminal there is never ending construction work with a bold title on the scaffolding, 'BAA Working towards building an airport London could be proud of'. I! ooh! I see!

The thing is I can not see, the amount of tax we pay for this, and the amount of service I expect in return is obviously not matching. I do expect a pub/ restaurant of sorts, I do expect a decent set of shops, several ATMs, several phone booths, an internet cafe etc etc. Yes I know its departures only and all you need to do is check in bags and walk into the world of Duty Free! But many a times you get there and wait till check in opens, specially when you are catching connecting flights. There is no where to sit and wait, there is nothing! Pathetic! Not to mention people who wake up at an alarmingly early hour to meet and say good bye to loved ones..who have nowhere to sit and chat.

How come in Europe, they have a proper cafe culture even at airports, why do they have shops that sell more than newspapers and medicines at the airport. How come there are comfy seats to sit and wait on, even decent bars to have a quick drink with your amtes before you need to get into security and get out?
And last but not the is an UGLY UGLY building..

And now they are testing out T5 for comfort etc..sigh!

Saturday, March 08, 2008


Just when I had figured out which of my paintings goes on which wall..ding dong. Bell. Recorded delivery. Tenancy cut short, please move home.
So the search has to begin again. For another house. SIGH!
Bearing in mind how hard it was last time around..oh..I will not even bother writing. Depressed at the very thought.
These record my thoughts from the not so long ago house hunt
House and Home
Finicky Woman
Where do I begin

Just when I thought I shall go to India, chill, come back, study, give Viva, add the 'Dr' before my name! Now I have to pack, find house, unpack! oh Dear!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Mobile Phones and Me.

Ok..its officially time for me to get a new one. I have spent a year with the same phone and now I am due a free upgrade. The problem is...I hate looking for the right deal = Rental + Handset + Free Minutes + Texts + Network of my choice.

Needless to say my current network provider has been chasing me with their 'amazing deals' which are of course 'tailor made' and only for 'me'. These offers supposedly do not last beyond 48 hours and must be taken 'now'.
And it does not end there, I need to hear about how expensive the new handset is and how many phones are lost and stolen everyday in UK..and therefore I must buy insurance on the phone. The fact that I have never in the past 10 years lost one..makes no differebce.
I also have to hear about the 8GB memory, 5 mega pixel camera, slide phones, slip phones, QWERTY keyboards (that was easy to type!), Bluetooth, MP3 player, light weight phone, display size,...the list just goes on..and on and on...

Too many options are sometimes not nice. So far I have had many a Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Seimens, Motorola, Sagem, Samsung, NEC, Blackberry, LG. I grew up and out of Nokia..for some reason..flip phones aint my style, slide phones are just fiddly, qwerty keyboards make handsets huge. Grey colour phones are boring, black ones try too hard, chargers ofcourse have been designed to cause us customers as much pain as possible, fat ones do not fit easily into my dinky handbags, the very slim ones generally dont do much apart from looking thin(quite like their human counterparts), the huge screen ones get scratched easily, putting a phone in a sock is so NOT me..

So what do you want? was what the sales guy asked me.

Bearing in mind this little object shall go pretty much everywhere I go with me for the next better be worth the effort..or buying and carrying..

So, what DO I want..hmm..let me think, a phone which rings, talks to my computer, plays music, has a good battery life because I talk a lot, and is light and small. And it should not cost anything..I want it free, and I want it delivered by tomorrow morning.

The options I have been given are..Blackberry 8310, (the Pearl has a s**t tracker ball..I am hoping this one is better). Sony Ericsson K860i (touch phone with a tracker wheel), HTC - MDA touch (looks good..but is it any good?) I do not want a Nokia..and I do not want the iPhone..its too big to be of any use to me with my microscopic size hands (its amazing the people who made the Air, also made the iPhone!!) there is a monopoly of O2 over the phone, and it is locked to the network..and it still costs a lot! here I am thinking about phones..when all I need is one that rings and does not need to be plugged to a wall each night! But guess what, I have been meaning to figure this one out since Jan end..and have I? Nope? why? Because unlike other things which I can decide about with my eyes closed and not regret..getting a phone..which you need to hold on to for a hard! Oh I wish someone would decide, book it, get it and give it to me..I have started dreading this time of the year now..EVERY year I have had to face the trauma of upgrading my phone for free!!

I acting like a girl. I know. But I am.

Sunday, March 02, 2008 I come!

The tickets have been bought. And I am heading to Delhi once again on my annual pilgrimage to India.
To meet the loved ones, the not so loved but must-meet-its-rude-not-to ones, the adored ones, the not-so-little-anymore ones, dearest friends, relatives, in-laws, relatives of inlaws, those who came for the wedding but I did not get a chance to talk to (on account of attempts being made to be the coy, shy bride)..the list goes on.
India also means the annual emotional battery recharging that I need. The need to connect to base, or as my mother calls it, head office! I need to go back to head office, let my hair (or whats left of it) down, sleep, eat, talk, make friends with the new cocker spaniel pup in the house and of course do the inevitable shopping.

Now, this is the thing. When I first moved to UK in 2000, there were a 1000 things I did not get here which I dearly wanted..pickle, hajmola, aam papar, bombay mix chewra, masalas, cotton clothes, flat shoes. If it was not in style, it was not readily available. This is of course before I had access to Ikea and Primark! So I used to make a long list of things I wanted from India. And needless to say used to come back with overloaded suitcases! Now I live about 10 mins from an area where not only is there Indian food stuff of every kind, there are onions flown in from Bombay, thepla from Ahmedabad, Revari and Gajjak from Lucknow. Everything is available, easily and it does not cost an arm and a leg!
So when my mother asked me this morning what I want..I actually had nothing to say. Craft made bed covers and cushions, check. Rugs and Carpets, check. Bedcovers and duvet covers, check. Pressure cookers and karahi, check. Masala box with those miniscule round katoris for 6 masalas in one steel box, check. Yup..I can go on..and on..and on..and on and they are all available here. So what do I want from India?

And it works the other way round. When I used to leave from here at the start of this decade, there were requests for Body Shop body butter, Marks and Spencer clothes, comfortable high heels, Dior lipstick, chocolates and scotch whiskey. Now, all these are available more readily in India now and I dont need to lug them there anymore. Which means I am all out of gifts to buy. Ok some chocolates like Milka, Maltesers etc I have not seen in India yet. I have also not seen chocolates and biscuits for people with diabetes. I do not know about Laphroaig whisky or Glenmorangie..both of which are made in yes I shall carry my pack of chocolates and whiskey.

I always get caught up in last minute gift thinking. And then I also load myself at the airport. And once I am home, I unpack and hand out gifts, eat what I had ordered 48 hours ago and promptly go to sleep. That is just the way it has been for the past 7-8 years.

And so it begins..yet another trip to India. I have lost count of how many times I have been home in the past 8 years..3-4 times a year sometimes, sometimes less..enough to collect air miles and fly free to India..yes. I know I should get over the excitement which is borne not only out of travel..but the chance to be home. The last time I was home it was exactly a year get married..and that was good..but not what I would call fun. Had it been someone else's wedding I would have deployed that word. However I did not get the chance to relax and catch up with everyone. Now I shall make up for that.

Long distance travel + Heathrow Airport = Mental tiredness at the very thought.
Home + Mom + Dad + Siblings + Mad dog = Happy hand rubbing in glee thought, I am more than willing to fly 8hr 45min to Delhi..:) in a week then..I shall be there.