Monday, December 24, 2007

merry and all...

merry xmas. happy new year. and all of that. i'm disappearing for a bit. meanwhile i've discovered play-doh!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


in better times his flaming headgear could be spotted from a couple of miles. a cue for everybody to gather their feet in well worn hawaiiiis and rush to kandakarnan’s court.

he hissed and spat and bit off chicken heads. petty kings and marco polo stared on in awe. kandakarnan was master of all.

today, for a god he is exceptionally accommodating. the occasional duck to avoid an overhead telephone cable. the local red party boss is taking his time over an other cuppa. kandakarnan whose fury of yore could burn your house down now has to twiddle his burning thumbs.

temple drummers work up their usual frenzy. ball of fire follows ball of fire. whoops and cries and a golden sickle to brandish. in god’s own country, when the kids don’t sleep, mothers drop kandakarnan's name. move over gabbar.

Monday, December 17, 2007

browne on the #150

browne dons the war paint in another weird departure from sanity. girls giggled. men marveled. the monster from the nadirs of darkness has risen. hair first. meanwhile it's a merry # 150 for me.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

d for dzong

winter is in the bones. and i remember a year ago at drukyel dzong. bhutan's last outpost that in medieval times fought away invading chinese millions with a handful of sharp archers.

in their frocky khos, archers lined up behind drukyel dzong's baked walls and aimed and rained arrows on the hordes. that was many centuries ago. today the walls are crumbling under the weight of one too many indian tourists' graffiti onslaught. i love you rani. kemcharan das, patna 1996.
one year later i'm still besotted. with 3 days in paro. when paradise briefly relented a peek. in bhutan something strange touched me.

and it continues to itch.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

good lord

that's it. if this is where online videos are headed i'm signing up for president of the armchair travelers of the world.

Sunday, December 02, 2007


evel knievel made one last jump. to the other side.

Friday, November 30, 2007

now on sands

was plodding through salt polythene bags sea shells urchins and the rich russian chick's rottweiler's poo. it was a lovely day to stare at the sand.

the sand has stories. shoe sizes and smoked ciggies. and the occasional sleeping dog to stumble over.

i am dundee.

itch in my shoe. it's that time of the year again. and there are so many many chains. woe.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

femme sax

between sambhar lessons i squeezed in my sax for dummies hardbacks. it takes some getting used to. i can tell my sa from my ni now. just like i can tell good asafoetida from bad asafoetida. and idiots like you behind the camera will always dig the novelty of a sari clad woman blowing the sax carnatic ishtyle.

but as with the rest of the dreary world, i too need to find support for my head. and worry about rin soap and the children's homework and the maid who's been shirking. after this barnumesque show, i too need to return to colour television.

Monday, November 26, 2007

rich biatch

sadly, they knocked off the pic...

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

tawdry overdrive

i have no car
the road tax is too damn high
i dont want no big mercedes
even a small ta-pow will also do
but i have no car
oui why you so like that aah?
here the lion god
give you one fulltoo car
in red blue yellow magenta pink sepia sepulchura
it even has tyres

on a good day
my fulltoo car moves on engine power
no pushing shoving spluttering engine oil leaking
chinese music playing
shuang shuang yan

here is my air horn ok please
echoing through hills and valleys
creating public nuisance
my fulltoo car will run over tamil goats
and you too.

happy birthday yo! A/C no hand signal.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

otter bay update

butterflies darted in and out of knee high grass. schools of masheer freckled the river with air bubbles. river terns and cormorants plucked breakfast out of the gurgling eddies. a lone fishing eagle, tan and white, jumped out of the sky and showed everyone else how it's done in style. a family of otters rolled in the sandy banks of a small island. stopping only to poke a curious whiskered snout at us. and then feet followed swimming trunks followed ribcage followed head followed perfectly poised hands into the still still black water.
oh yes. it's been a while.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

janomo morono

there is an art in dying too. "to be born again you have to first die" and i wonder. what it might be like. to die one tuesday evening. and be reborn, robbed of all mortal cravings. to know some truth that nobody else does.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

do the double

in a country far from here, nestled in towering mountains, two little girls with strawberry cheeks giggled as only little girls can. and pulled at each other's hair. looked at me from their mountain walls, whispered little nothings into each other's ears and continued to giggle. here's hoping that they are as happy as i found them. :)

Monday, July 30, 2007

the grand old man of paro

having stumbled down the slopes of taktsang, the air's a little thicker. from the log cabin's chimney the smell of thukpa and wai wai hold out a steaming promise of a well-deserved meal. beer bottle caps pop in the background. a prayer wheel on a mountain stream measures its every runaround with a peal from a centuries old bell. a hundred birds hurry home and the furry black dog paws the soft earth hidden away under a throw of pine cones. and the woodcutter marks time with his axe. in slow arcs his old weak arms work a fallen log. an unfailing rhythm. the wind blows taktsang's holy dust into the many folds of his face. his handmedown jacket flutters in surrender to the evening chill. little chunks of pine fly off into the sky. he stops for one moment. time stops with him. all of time is slave to this weather beaten woodcutter in a handmedown, by the thukpa, wai wai log cabin. and when he smiles, the world smiles with him. for he is the grand old man of paro.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

a whole new twist

i've nurtured a fascination for HDR (high dynamic range imaging) for quite some time now. but that annoying psy-debate that plays out in your head between classical and modern thought, for most part in my case had classical thought triumphing. but now i've seen enough. HDR is the new benchmark and i've decided to take the plunge. while my first experiments are just that - experiments, the future seems bright and promising. clear blue skies and vivid foregrounds. the first step was the software - big thanks to recho here. next up is a lot of clicking on auto bracket. i dredged up the only bracketed pics i could find immediately for these results. and they might not seem all that amazing. but watch this space. it's a whole new world.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Junkyard of Photography

Link Of The Day - July 19
(look at what all i try to be cyber cool)
Incredible collection of images from the recycle bins of photographers all over the world. As neatorama says "But for some reason, the error-as-art conceit sort of works."
And I should add, it's a strange albeit very satiating kind of voyeurism.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


parveen babi's bodyguard in amar, akbar and antony softly padded his way into our lives this last week. meow.

Monday, July 16, 2007

das saal baad

it's been 10 years since the first blog came along. woooh. and what a ride it's been.
hurrah for our online lebensraums. forever in awe.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

one little devil

kuttichatan, loosely translates as little devil. one former vice-principal's name loosely translated as the devil in the coconut-grove. thing is, in god's own country, the devils arent particularly frowned upon. and are even welcomed with endless cups of tea, marie biscuits, berkeley cigarettes and headless chickens.
historically kuttichatan is siva's consort. like my pa says, an agent, somebody the lord chose to outsource certain responsibilities that he couldn't be bothered with, to. kuttichatan mainly concerns himself with fire, arson and the like. if you've been a good kid this year, umm... sorry, we don't have santa in kerala. but if you've been a bad kid, kc will come huffin and puffin and burn your house down.

that part madonna part harlot, happy sad evil laugh will echo in my one functional ear forever.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


standard kolliwood scene has a bunch of sweaty thugs, all rushing at the heavily powdered, respected and adored rajnikanth. before they have a go at him with choppers, cycle chains, medieval clubs, swords and the odd country made pistol, THE BOSS waves them to a stunned halt and declares -"pigs always come in groups. but the lion roams alone."

predictably he proceeds to decimate the pigs, swallowing bullets and dodging sword swooshes all the while finding the time to mouth more cult classic dialogues.from bus conductor to record breaking marquee fame - basha, the boss, padiyappa, the names are many, but the truth is one. as 'lavanya auto stand friends' will swear, there is no other like rajni."sollitte!"

Monday, May 28, 2007


it's coming down officially now. umbrellas - black, yellow and green, foldable and unfoldable, torn, patched and new, are all out in full strength. i'm digging too. in the far corners of my cupboards for rain gear. and there's a squish in my shoes.

cats, dogs and the odd hippo coming down. you can bet your mummy, it's the end of summer. end of summer equates the first of the annual trips to hampi. the memories in spite of our adled beyond repair brains, are flooding in. ruins bathed in evening yellow. the million goli sodas. monkey hill. sanapur. the boatman with the cool aviators. the itch. oh yes. it's back.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

a prayer for the road

all over, perfect squares of red, green, yellow and white mark themselves out against a blue sky. cheap block prints by the millions sending out prayers into the universe. riding on himalayan winds. the almost murmur of prayer flags fluttering in mountain air is a most becalming sound. second only to a pedal type sewing machine.

to get carried away in buddha country is fairly easy. a strong gale, sudden idealism, inexplicable feelings of belonging - the possibilities are infinite. faced with that, some of us weaker souls hang on. desperately to whatever we've known and most importantly - rationalism.

how for instance is this string of prayer flags here? across an impossible gorge. somebody shot the string across on an arrow? maybe the monks have a trained falcon that flew across with the string? a radio controlled plane - you know the type: petrol engine, 2 channel remote? a giant kite? between browne and me, we had a handful of watertight theories. turns out, somebody walked around the gorge with the string.

i'm a believer.