Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Xmas wishes...

It has def. been 3 exciting weeks...

The business trip to India was excellent - a lot of good insights into our UBS office in Hyderabad.

Was also great catching up with Abhinav, Shanty, Frances and Rachit on old and current stories in the AIESEC world :)

Though for a day, it was great to catch up with family, friends and relatives back in Baroda and not to forget the Bombay tanking up at Toto's with Sam and Abhinav.


Besides that, the secret santa xmas dinner at Petroula's with Sab, G, Aine, PK and I was cosy too... Some really funny gifts and I thank my secret santa for this wonderful gift - acco. to her it was apt because of my new iPhone (Thank you PK for this thoughtful gift :)).


Other big highlight was Mairi's visit here, unfortunately Pinar couldn't make it due to some last min. hassles and we def. missed her. We went 10,000 feet up to Mt. Titlis - the most beautiful site I have ever seen. Though pictures say a thousand words, to be there and witness the amazing mountains from such a height - it was a different world out there. It was fascinating to have numerous conversations with her and hear her experience with Health Estonia foundation. It was absolutely a perfect holiday...some pictures below - many more on my flickr badge.
On one of the mountains - there is a natural statue of Buddha or at least seems like that. It was an incredible sight and there is a fascinating story of Chinese Olympic gold medalist- Donghua Li behind this. The first picture in the last row in the collage shows that.


And how did I spend xmas?
Well, it was Gaurav and I at home - watching a lot of movies, 24 episodes, a couple of premiership matches and scotch :) besides the wonderful xmas AIESEC interns dinner.

My xmas message and quote is my best line from one of the Harry Potter books - comes from Book 2 - Chambers of Secrets.

"It is our choices…that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."

On that note I want to wish you all merry xmas and a new year to everyone where you have the strength to make conscious choices that bring you growth and happiness in all spheres of life.

For new year celebrations, looking forward to meet few other AI friends in Austria - can't wait....

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Highlights...

I had the chance to witness the UBS Verbier Festival Orchestra The unique thing about this orchestra is it is composed of musicians aged 17 to 29 from over 30 countries and it started since the year 2000.
It is recognized as one of the world's leading training orchestras and so a few of us managed to get tickets there to witness. It was incredible how the young musicians played flawlessly synchronized. Amazing experience - those 2 hrs were incredible.

Work is shaping up in an interesting manner. Am meeting interesting people every day and learning more about the dynamics of the corporate environment.

The other evening we had been to an English comedy club after work for some lighter and nonsensical moments by three English comedians. It was hysterical and silly :) Was really good after a long day's work.

Another thing I have noticed that in the last 10 days is that I have been frequenting an Indian restaurant called Kings Kurry (amazingly delicious food). Now that I am moving to a house closer to work and it is one tram stop away from this place - I am gonna practically live at this restaurant.

The German classes are going good along with signing up for the UBS Squash club - so finally will start some sports.

It is already December now which is going to be a jam packed month...

Things to look forward:
- A business trip to India from the 9th to 16th
- Mairi and Pinar's visit to Switzerland
- New Year celebrations in a cottage in Austria with friends (Gabiza, Ondro, Ryan, Ildi, Jarda, Coco, Nico, Habib)

Cant wait to meet friends and hear their unique experiences and have those discussions that always bring a smile to your face...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I hope you dance...


I close my eyes, center my mind and sincerely pray that everyone on encountering a choice choose to dance

Live your dreams...
Amit Desai.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

!!!


Walking down the central streets of Zurich, I bumped into a few antique shops and I thought of checking them out.

Look what I found - this watch and how much it costs ......costs 5230 EUR which is a BIT OVER 300 thousand Indian Rupees (INR).

Crazyyyyyyyy... I have seen a watch veeeeeeery similar to this on the streets of Delhi - the guys say 200 INR (just below 4 EUR) and I have seen Indians still bargaining for this :)

Lads and lasses, welcome to Zurich

So, what's been up?

Another 2 weeks have whizzed by...but they have been extremely exciting.


The last week, I was chairing the AIESEC Austrian national conference - FUTURE . This was one of the key highlights of the last two weeks. It was a bit strange to go back to an AIESEC forum but at the same time I loved every bit of it. First couple of days in Vienna, and then to the land of Mozart - Salzburg where the conference was held - I had a memorable time.

I did not know the faci nor the MC team that well so it was a bit of challenge for me to see how the conference would be managed with four parallel tracks and ensuring the conference is ONE conference and not fragmented. However, I was impressed with the professionalism, attitude and approach of the facilitators team. Also, the delegates showed great amount of enthusiasm to learn. Thank you everyone for this. It is amazing how AIESEC continuously churns out such individuals every single year since the past 60 years. Also, I was moderating an alumni panel and to see how they view AIESEC's contribution in their lives all pointed out to the values, attitude and approach that the platform and environment of AIESEC had instilled in them.

It was also good to meet some friends and catch up with them. Overall, an exciting break from 2 months of work :)

Besides that, some restructuring going on in our Business Group, so well lets see how things affect my role, if at all they do.

This week Zurich experienced some snow and sub zero temperatures are becoming a reality now. Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrr......

Ah, and how can I forget this - ? I am a proud owner of a beauty - my new Apple iPhone - extremely slick and cool :) Good investment considering I didn't even have an ipod and I was thinking to buy that but then thought - why not pay some more and get an iPhone itself? :)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Die Zauberflote


Last weekend, Petroula, my friend - pilar and I went to watch the opera at the Zurich Opera house - Die Zauberflote (The Magical Flute), one of the most popular operas by Mozart.

I did prepare by reading a bit about these acts as it was in German - so though I could comprehend the story, the classical elements of enlightenment v/s obscurantism would have been more understood if it was in English. But in any case, one of the coolest experiences I must say and I look forward to going for more operas as I feel at peace with such an environment.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ferrari's dream run...

Pretty ironical to write this post after the last post - on two completely different notes - though this is about the current season of formula 1 and I had to share my feelings about the recent feat.

A dramatic climax to end the F1 season 2007 - and I had the pleasure to watch it.

Raikkonen - I think still cant believe how could this have happened when he started 3rd on the grid with Hamilton on the 2nd position and to win the season he had to not only win but beat Hamilton by 6 positions - simply unbelievable that such an event can happen on the last race of the season.

The start was one of the best ever I have ever seen for Ferrari. The way Massa defended Hamilton and Raikkonen's squeeze in the first few seconds of the race - no words to describe the feeling that crept after this.

Anyways, I can go on and on about these moments from the final race and the analysis - but overall a satisfying feeling to see Ferrari continuing the domination with the constructors and the drivers title in their bag.

The 2008 season promises to be a cracker (like any season) but until then from a true tifosi - I will continue to bathe in the glory of Ferrari's victory :)

Over & out....

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Last 3 weeks - on a F1 race track


Life recently has been on a formula 1 race track , ironically haven't been even able to see the last 2 F1 races :), though I promise to myself that I will catch up on the Brazilian race to finish the season.

So many things are happening and the first month as a conscious choice I have decided to let myself flow with the flow and see what happens after a month.

I finish a month now and some good time to reevaluate on what has been up so far...

- Work

It has been great so far. I am working in Market Strategy and Development Department under the Global Wealth Management arm of UBS. Two main areas I am working on is an offshoring case that is just being conceptualized right now. It is extremely interesting to view an offshoring process and how it is being conceptualized and implemented from the other end point (on-shore) as I always been in the offshore hub of the world and viewed Indian business from that angle. The second part is working with my boss on the Steering Committee (like in AIESEC :)) which is a part of the offshoring governance framework - so helping to manage and run meetings with the Business Sector Heads. So .. so far so good!

- Life besides work

Has been crazy as well. A lot of going out, meeting people, settling down, cheese fondues, AIESEC presentations in Bern and Zurich during their recruitment / induction sessions. The other AIESEC interns and Petroula :) are a good bunch. Aine has beautifully summarized in her posts on how some of our weekends have been.

Though couple of big highlights, I would wanna briefly mention:

- Visiting Luzern and Mt. Pelatus was one of the most beautiful moments ever. This trip was with Sab, Petroula and a couple of Indian people from the Indian Service Centre of UBS in Hyderabad who had been on a visit to Zurich.


- Thursday night out

Yes, this has been the heights of being spontaneous. After a nice dinner at Petroula's, with Sab, Gaurav, Aine and me, we decided to go for a quick drink out at a pub called Lady Hamilton's. After that, I dont know what happened (am still trying to find out what led to this) but we all went out to a club or say club hopping until 5 30 am and then 1 hr rest after which straight to work then. The work day was very productive - I must say :) am serious, but I have never done something crazy like this on a Thursday night. And no pics available :)

Anyways, there will be pictures uploaded on my flickr account soon - some of them are up, but still loads more to be up. But to summarize, after reflecting on my first month's experience and a good pit stop to reevaluate, certain things are even more clear.

A great start to my exchange experience, and I look forward to the rest. Will have more frequent updates (this was one of the other pitstop reflections :))

I have realized that it is critical to have those pit stops and at regular intervals, to know and sense the right speed for you at different times in your life, when to speed up, when to have those pit stops and go according to that - also what kind of people enable you to have a smooth race and how important it is to have them around you - or else the fuel will run out and / or it might be too late for a pit stop.


On another note, I will be chairing the next Austrian AIESEC Conference in Salzburg from 8th - 11th Nov. So I look forward to visit Austria for the very first time in my life!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Am alive...

Yes, I am gonna find a time the coming weekend to put up an update on the first few days in Zurich! It is been insanely hectic but exciting...

Some pictures until an elaborate post this weekend!


My work place


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Zurich tomorrow!


I shall see the sun rising tomorrow in Zurich!

Cant wait to start the next phase of my life...

Monday, September 03, 2007

Education and learning



Last week, Pruthvi and I held a workshop for high school students in our school - Tejas Vidyalaya. This is the school where my entire schooling happened - 15 years! So of course its special.

But since education is one my strongest passions which I want to be connected throughout my life, we went and shared our perspective on learning and how school education fits into the overall picture of learning.

Knowing how during schooling here (which is beginning to change now), the students have the need to think beyond school education and usually forget the important truth of learning being the goal of education, the objective was to increase consciousness about learning, and how they learn today. Also we conducted an exercise on finding their own learning styles and have some discussions amongst them about these topics besides sharing our experience.

The entire feeling was satisfactory and seeing the students so thrilled and open minded, it felt that was just the thing they needed then.

It was also a great opportunity to get an insight about the current reality of school education in my city.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Weekend in Bombay!

Last weekend was spent in Bombay to re-live the memories that have been so special! Pruthvi and I met up with few friends of us having total masti in Bombay!

Major highlights that included mostly visiting places / doing things that used to be a part of daily lifestyle on the Indian MC and meeting friends:

* Meeting college friends, other good friends - Aalekh, Rishi, Jeeten, Neha, Ishani, Sabi and couple of cousins
* Chomping Vada and samosa pav at Vikhroli station
* Bowling at Hakone in Powaii
* Totos and watching India win with a bunch of special friends - a heavy spirited night, indeed!
* Midnight chilling at Taj Lands End
* Carter road
* Mondies
* Having Bade miya's rolls
* A sneak peek at Gokul's but dint manage to spend any time there


I stayed at Bhavesh and Janki's place who used to study with me in university and now are married. Such a simple and sweet couple! Had a great time catching up. Also met his small cousin - cute & naughty who we used to hassle a lot during our university times when I went to his place to study :) Here is a pic!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Frustrating and disappointing....

Yes, its about 3 a.m. and India just lost the 4th One Day International to England.

Disappointing because India lost yet another match but frustrating because India bowled very well but the same old thing - could not finish. Most of the time the reason has been that the Indian cricket team have been poor at finishing the great job they have been doing throughout the match.

After England was nearly out of the match at 114 for 7, they came back with a 100 run partnership for the 8th wicket to win the match. I wonder whether India has ever come out of such a situation strongly to win a match - probably I can count them on my one hand.

The other thing was a bad decision (and that also happens always against India) at about 172 / 7 when Stuart Broad was plumb in front, ball hitting the back leg by Piyush Chawla and of course the decision never went for India. That could have turned the match but well a disappointing end. Another frustrating point in the match!

Damn! Not a good feeling to go to bed with. Lets see what happens in the last 3 games - a miraculous performance can have India win this series now.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

My baby!

I have someone new that has become a part of my life. Yes, ladies and gentlemen - I am talking about nothing else but the beautiful Sony VAIO CR12 model.

Slick black, with the latest techie stuff - inbuilt camera and microphone, blue tooth and other jazz. And its not heavy like the suitcase (I am talking about Dell) I used to carry on AI. It also has the speech recognition stuff, so it basically responds - writes documents, accepts commands, opens documents, applications by recognizing my voice. It needs some training to get used to my mixed and different accent, but training is on its way. It is fun, since its like teaching a baby on how to respond to what you say :) But anyways, continuing my loyalty to this brand, I bought this at a pretty decent price.

Hopefully it does not give me problems and behaves well. It is a bit delicate but its fine since I do not live a crazy AIESEC lifestyle anymore :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Happy 60 - India! My notes...

It is the 60th birthday of my beloved nation today.

Today's day is significant. The question I am pondering over is what does it mean to me?

Amongst a lot of things, one thing stands out for and has been resonating through my mind a lot.

Giving and thinking beyond one's self - the independence day echoes the message of giving to the nation and society.

Yesterday I saw back to back movies - Gandhi, my father and Chak De India which also has the message of giving yourself for the "greater good beyond your own self"
Impressive movies - enjoyed it! A must see for everyone.

Another thing which I found impressive is the lead campaign of timesofindia. The first page of yesterday's newspaper is really cool.

Some excerpts:

D.O.
Two simple letters.

Place them side by side however, and they form a word potent enough to turn a mass of people into a nation.

The last time we decided to Do or Die it changed the map of the world. Today, the eyes of the world are on us again. So what are we going to do?

Thinking may be a great way of getting things started. But DOING is the only way to get things done.

And lets face it. You are never really caught a in a traffic jam. You are the traffic jam.

So lets stop basking in our glorious past or day dreaming about our great future. Lets start by dominating today.

And domination starts with DO.

Check more about the entire campaign here

A lot of debate can go on whether India has been truly free - 6 is how Youth of India scores on a freedom index of one to ten when asked how free they feel in a recent poll.

In the last 60 years, a lot has grown. I was talking to one of my school friends and he said - "India is at a position which no other nation has reached". And it is true. The situation is pretty complex if you see the management of this country. But amongst all the complexities, the nation can significantly prosper if the passion and will to grow more and solve the underlying challenges of the country comes from within the people. Do those small things, not throw garbage on streets etc. think beyond your own self and I am sure you will be a BIG help in moving the nation forward.

Small cities, states can prosper if its people are willing to do so. I have seen great examples of cities like say a Surat who has come out of serious diseases like plague, heavy floods etc. and that too within a span of couple of years but talking to people - it all boiled down to that the people in that city wanted to make a change and that's how it happened.

So start with the man in the mirror!

Once again a historic moment for India today - Happy Independence Day to India and all the Indians.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Home sweet home...

I am back in Baroda for about 3 days now, but say I have woken up only now :)

The last 2 days in Rotterdam had been pretty intense - packing plus emotionally as well. I am ready to leave AIESEC after 6.5 years but not really ready to leave my team whom I had a ball of a year with.

Its the beauty of AIESEC that you meet with ambitious young people whom you can relate so deeply with, have great conversations, built genuine relationships, but at the same time a big con is that because it is a year of such an intense experience that you become very close friends, and then you need to move on - though you know that you will make sure you will meet up with them soon. I miss you!

So the last 2 days in the Netherlands were packed with dinners, spending a lot of time with close friends and the night before I flew - a high spirited bachelors party for Ryan :) who is going to get married next July with Ildi.

Now I am back home spending time with family and talking to so many relatives over phone - incredible how big our social circle is. I have been sleeping a lot and watching movies, news channels and cricket :) (Star Cricket - 24 hrs non stop cricket channel - bliss! I am making up for all the cricket I have been missing since the last 2 years)

Meanwhile, while waiting for the VISA procedures for Switzerland, I am thinking of going to Turkey for about 8 - 10 days. Lets see how things unfold, the next few days will have the answer figured out.

A good time to regroup, reflect as it is like starting a new phase of my life and not another year!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Finished!

So yesterday night at just around 2 30, I finished the 7th book - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows!

I was so tired yesterday, but I just couldn't stop but keep on reading it until the end.

All answers solved, everything fitting in perfectly well. All those burning questions about what will happen to Harry, why is Snape acting the way he is, is he evil or good?, what are the Horcruxes and many more have been answered. I feel at peace :)

As a true HP fan, I would not give out anything here to spoil the fun, but to share my feelings - it felt incredibly impressive on how Rowling managed to tie and knit the plot so fantastically well.

I love the way she writes, the way she describes the tiny details in the most vivid fashion which takes your mind to actually visualizing it.

Overall, I have been in awe for this amazing writer who has let me experienced so many different emotions while reading through only 7 books, who has not let me sleep but captured.

I felt I will have some some doubts, queries - but all's woven in very well in the 7th book.

I am sure I will have a lot of great conversations around this with Harry Potter fans :)

Looking forward to those!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Recovered...

I have finally recovered from the Transition party :)

It was awesome! After a great Friday evening with 150 litres of Czech beer - Staropramen overflowing and meeting so many people, Saturday proved to be even better (except the Soccer match).

Rotterdam weather (finally) supported a good Soccer tournament. The two AI teams ended up in the final, but the new team beat us. They had a strong team, but we had another blow - Jarda broke his leg, Yes and this is crazy - After Ondro who had a surgery with a similar but a worse blow 2 weeks back, Jarda during the game had a similar injury and now he has a plastered foot as well - so with two strikers out of the game, it was not the strongest teams anyways. But well played new AI team :)

The party in the night - All Class No Sh*t lived up to its theme. About 200 people, and the entire place booked to ourselves was packed. Gee and Ondro were the DJ's :) and the music rocked. Surprisingly I partied until 5 00 AM (its the first time in the last one year, I have been up partying - I felt young again :)).

With legs paining the entire next day, and an extra long sleep in, it was time to start reading the 7th book of HP. About 200 pages more to go, its becoming extra tough to read it slow as once its over, its over! The last HP book - wanna make sure all details are read through painstakingly.

VISA papers need to be filed in latest next Monday, so working on that besides finalizing and wrapping up work and transition.

This Friday and the weekend is going to be sailing! The last team days - we will start our odyssey of sailing around the Ijsselmeer and the Dutch Wadden Sea.

Our Ship:


"The Chateauroux" - A Two mast clipper ship famous for its red wine sails.

I simply cannot wait for my first sailing adventure and closing team days :)

Saturday, July 21, 2007

I have it!!!!!!


Bought the first thing today morning after a great start to the transition party yesterday evening!

Started with the first chapter and its thrilling! Cant wait to finish it...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Jiggy Jawwww Jadon at his best...

Yesterday we were going to the Global Coordinators meeting and on the way Abhishek Jadon a.k.a Jiggy Jadon was entertaining me with his escapades from 2 - 3 years back (I must say those were his wild days :))

But one of his comments was so hilarious that I had to post it - its one of those Jiggy Jadon moments

So here's how the conversation goes:

Shashaank (who is the Global Coordinator Microsoft, worked with him in LC Jaipur) : So Abhi, tell us about your wild days

Me: Haan boss, tell us about your escapades with women

Shashaank hints him to quote his famous line used during those days

Jadon's response with his famous look: "Hum roopnagar ke cheeteh hai, shikar pe hi jeete hain"

Next 10 mins - Shashaank, Rishabh, me laugh like maniacs until our tummies hurt! The entire tram along with the other coordinators wonders what the hell just happened.

Monday, July 09, 2007

What a Sunday!

Raikkonen cleans up the Silverstone grand prix in style! Go Ferrari!


The king of grass court tennis - Federer claims the throne at Wimbledon!


Couldn't have been a better sporting day!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

MATCHED!

Starting the next phase of my life (a.k.a the exchange phase of AIESEC Experience :))

SN-In-NL-AI-2007-1431 matched to TN-In-CH-ZH-2007-1292

I simply cannot believe this - it was so quick for everything to happen! I will be working in the marketing strategy and development department of UBS (in Global Wealth Management) from August end for 1 year.

Friday, June 08, 2007

The Book of Secrets

'Two chemicals called actin and myosin evolved eons ago to allow the muscles in insect wings to contract and relax. Thus, insects learned to fly. When one of these paired molecules is absent, wings will grow but they cannot flap and are therefore useless.

Today, the same two proteins are responsible for the beating of the human heart, and when one is absent, the person's heartbeat is inefficient and weak, ultimately leading to heart failure.

Science marvels at the way molecules adapt over millions of years, but isn't there a deeper intent? In our hearts, we feel the impulse to fly, to break free of boundaries. Isn't that the same impulse nature expressed when insects began to take flight?'

- The book of Secrets

Currently reading this. It has profound at the same time simple messages about purpose and meaning of life.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

AI Transition Kicks off...

Keep visiting the AI Blog every week to follow the entire transition!

Check out the first post...

Thursday, May 31, 2007

31st May

I finish exactly 1 year of my AI experience today. I landed on 31st May in Rotterdam - not knowing what this experience will be like.

I have experienced a lot of emotions this year through my personal and professional experiences this year.

Tomorrow 9 00 AM - transition starts for the incoming team. Should be so exciting! Stay tuned to the AI blog and this for details about this.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

We are what we do...

Last Tuesday we had an afternoon session / workshop run by Frauke Godat - who is an AIESEC alumnus but now working at We Are What We Do (WAWWD)

WAWWD is such a simple concept working as a movement to make the world a better place to live in. They have created 100 simple, everyday actions that can improve our environment, our health, and our communities and make our planet and the people on it much happier.

There are some simple actions which you would not have thought of that wastes energy / is detrimental to the environment / makes people happy etc. They also have an action tracker which helps to track and remind you of these actions.

We had a great discussion on how we can work with them. Some action points lined up.

Personally, there are a few actions that I can relate to. One of this action caught my eye with a simple but powerful message. (Plus I love numbers :))


Saturday, May 12, 2007

Grade I : Photo :)

A huge thanks to Prabs for forwarding me this - picture of my class when I was in grade 1 :)

Guess, who is me :)?

Sunday, April 29, 2007

The 'true' champions...


Splendid performance yet again by the team that has become invincible in the game of cricket. Not a single loss in any games in the WC, and not only defeating the other side but beating them comprehensively each time they have played.

What is it in them that led them to play like this team in this WC? Especially in today's era, when there are so many good teams playing, every team has been just falling apart like a pack of cards when it comes to playing them.

Another thing I want to highlight, is that they are very vocal about their strategy. This was said by Ricky Ponting prior to the finals.

"If you lose early wickets, then you allow Murali and those sort of guys to come into the game and that's when you are at your most vulnerable,"

"Our whole plan this week will be to get through the new ball as well as we can and keep wickets in hand for the middle period when Murali, Dilshan and Jayasuriya and those guys are going to be bowling.

"We can be a bit more aggressive and a bit more positive against them and try and put their slow-down sort of guys through the middle, put them under a bit pressure."

Probably this is not a statement that involves rocket science. But this is a team that WALKS their TALK. This is exactly what happened in the finals. They played the first few overs cautiously, kept wickets in hand, and then launched an attack - all bowlers going over 6 runs in an over esp. Murali. Now Sri Lanka knew the game plan but couldnt make any difference to the game, mere spectators to what the Aussies had in mind.

I am in awe for this great team! Well Done Aussies - you deserved every bit of this.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Last leg of visit...

The last leg of my trips begin on Tuesday!

Sweden for the WENA X meeting (1st - 6th). Definitely looking forward to meeting a few people and close friends.

After this, a couple of days (7-8th) in Norway for meetings and then 9 - 10th in London for a conference - Responsible Business Summit - Looks extremely exciting!

Just over 3 months to end an incredible experience...still hasnt hit me, but well once the new team starts to come, it for sure will!

Feels kind of weird with sorting out next steps - its the first time in my life where you do not know what you are going to do and what part of the world you will end up in about 4 months to go. I am sure a lot of people have a similar feeling going on...

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Semifinals will begin - WC 2007

After an exciting super 8 league, we have the semi finalists (not so surprising though)

1st)


(Lankans looking deadly, great form, Malinga will be back in semis, Batting looking strong with Jayasuriya - the old horse running faster than he could ever have)




V/S



(The Kiwis - Have been playing brilliantly this series, definitely deserve a birth in the finals. Acco. to me, brilliant bowling attack with Bond, Oram, Vettori - though the only team that have beaten them - apart from Aussies are the Lankans)




2nd)


(Aussies - well bow down to the greatest team since a very long time. They have been comprehensively beating any side they have played against. Not even a slightest weak point seen in this WC. SA have a tough job ahead. Unless they have something going horribly wrong, they are set to win this WC. Though my hunch saying they wont, and they will be vincible)


V/S

(Def. the team that is at the bottom amongst the 4 semi finalists. Unless its their day, they are bowing out of the semis. Though you can never say. To win, I feel, SA needs to bat first and Smith, Gibbs need to pile up a huge score to put the Aussies under pressure.)





Cannot wait for an exciting finish! BETS for the finalists and the winners?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Complaint against Tendulkar for dishonouring flag

This is what I read in the Indian news site. And I was surprised that people with such thinking and IQ exist in the world...

READ:
A complaint has been filed with the Delhi police against Sachin Tendulkar for allegedly dishonouring the tri-colour during the Indian team's stay in the West Indies last month by Subodh Jain, a social activist based in east Delhi.

And the reason?

The controversy erupted as AajTak showed a photograph of Tendulkar with a knife about to cut the cake in the presence of the Indian High Commissioner to Jamaica, K L Agrawal, at a function there. Jain has also named Team India and officials of the Indian High Commission in Jamaica where Sachin allegedly cut a cake in the colours of the national flag.

"I am disturbed that a person of Tendulkar's stature is dishonouring the tricolour. He should be a role model and by cutting a cake with tri-colour he disgraced both the nation and the national flag," Jain said.

I would not advise to read more of this article - but anyone interested - click here

I cannot believe this...heights of stupidity! The comments on this article are fun to read though...

Now the deal is I posted this so that other people can see how NOT to make use of their free time. Oh man, there are so many things to deal to improve the world and make it a better society than lodging such moronic complaints.

Dude, Subodh Jain if you manage to bump into this blog - do get a life man and seriously if you are so passionate about stopping people to dishonour India, I would advise you to keep your mouth zipped up for the rest of your life to further dishonour India!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Last 2 weeks...

I was out of action for a couple of weeks, because I was in trauma after India's disappointing exit from the WC and lack of proper internet in S. Africa!

I am back from AFRO XPRO in Joburg, which was an intense facilitator experience. A challenging experience with no electricity for the last 48 hrs of the conference got the grey cells of the faci team churning, but if it wasnt for the faci team the conference would not have been the same!

Thanks to Frances for being such a sweetheart of a chair. Kudos to the faci team - Gaspar, Rishabh, Betty, Stephanie, Moyo, Piero, Patrick, Habib! I had some of the funniest times getting to know these people and had so much fun chilling with these folks.


Overall the experience Africa was unique and overwhelming - to experience Africa and to see some similarities amongst people of that region, how they behave, act, think and have fun was extremely interesting to observe.

One thing I definitely was not even a quarter close to them was their dancing and hip-shaking abilities. But I had a blast with them, getting to know some really cool, passionate people who will shape the future of Africa!

Thank you everyone for making my time in South Africa memorable.

Pictures are on the flickr account...

I am back now in Rotterdam, and I cannot wait to start interviews for my potential successors... the coolest people on AI :) - if you havent guessed, I was talking about the AI ER Team!

With regards to the cricket WC, I am now over the loss and am supporting New Zealand to win this world cup! They are playing exceptionally well and they have some of the killer players who can give big surprises and might have a closer chance to win the cup! Go Kiwis!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Mourning day...

Amongst an excited Africa Regional Conference in Johannesburg, I still do follow cricket :)

Today we shall observe a 1 minute silence, as India lost to Sri Lanka and that means (99%) we are out of the world cup.
Unless Bermuda beats Bangladesh, India has no chances - so we cant do anything but pray for that (that is highly unlikely). But on the other hand, I think does India really deserve to go further in the World Cup after their current performance? (I dont think so)
Anyways, on another note - the external day went well at the conference and the party in the night rocked! (It was PIMP and HOES party :))
Trying to stop Sobbing in Joburg...

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A picture taken in Dahab, Egypt


Was thinking to buy one of these until I clearly read what it meant :)

My team - AIESEC International Gains Worldwide Recognition for Democracy in the Workplace! Woohoo!

AIESEC International has been recognized as one of 34 companies in the “Worldwide Award for the Most Democratic Workplaces” sponsored by WorldBlu, Inc., a Washington, DC-based business specializing in organizational democracy.

The announcement came as part of the first Democracy in the Workplace Day, sponsored by the WorldBlu, Inc. organization. Businesses and non-profits from the US, Canada, the Netherlands and Russia made the premiere list, representing industries such as technology, telecommunications, media, manufacturing, and retail with a combined total of nearly $3 billion in annual sales.

Please click here for more information.

Monday, March 12, 2007

World Cup Cricket 2007 begins tomorrow!

16 teams...1 mission...



West Indies and Pakistan meet in an explosive opener tomorrow...

Official site here

My good wishes to the Men in Blue! Go India!

Any bets for the winners :)?

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Back in Rotterdam...

I am back in Rotterdam after:

- an amazing and eventful IPM

- excellent post IPM days in Egypt - Cairo, Alexandria, Dahab !!!
Highlights - Pyramids, Sphinx, Cairo old streets, chilling by the Mediterranean Sea, Snorkeling in the Red Sea, smoking the 'real' Sheesha, Mango juice, meeting some good friends!

Fresh new pictures on flickr! Check 'em out...

Next weekend off to South Africa for Afro XPRO! Cannot wait...(crossing my fingers to get the VISA on time :))

Life's running at a sprinter's pace...I am keeping the pace and loving every inch of it!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Longest Legislations in AIESEC Global Plenary...?

Its 6:30 AM in Cairo and the global plenary of AIESEC just passed the last motion of closing the legislation :)

10 hrs of legislation! What a night...Some big steps taken for moving AIESEC forward!

Next: AI VP announcements at the beach with the sun rising...Cannot wait!

3:55 AM in Cairo...

Legislation at IPM still continues. Its almost 7,5 hrs - it started at 20 30 local time here.

On another note :), I stumbled upon a page which talks about some learning points of Dave Barry, a humor columnist whose work appeared in more than 500 newspapers in the US and abroad.

One of them is:
If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be "meetings."

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

President of AIESEC International 2007-08 is...


Gabriela Albescu (Gabitza). Romanian by birth, she is the current Vice President People Development on AIESEC International.

What a night it was...the closest elections I have ever seen!

Well deserved by an amazing individual who will lead AIESEC to even greater heights!

Exciting!

I have been extremely inspired by all candidates. Great individuals!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

11:00 PM and Cairo is buzzing!

A lot has happened since my arrival in Cairo on the 13th night. Will summarize in few quick lines...

* Excellent luxurious stay at the Intercontinental five star hotel - pimpin food, rooms - though for 1 day. Had mouth watering real fresh mango juice! Had atleast 6 glasses today!
* AIESEC Symposium on Activating talent in the Middle East just got over 2 hours back - very well appreciated and it seems people loved it. Got to meet excellent people, and some really interesting thoughts about middle east youth and their aspirations, thoughts on career etc.
* Just arrived at the pre meeting site and straight after dropping my luggage, i am at this sheesha place - Sheesha in Egypt! Heaven... plus wireless going crazy! and even insane is my inbox! What a long day and a perfect ending...:)
* Tomorrow is Advisory Council meeting and GN pre-meetings start! Its going so fast...

Cairo! Bliss....

Over & out...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

AIESEC will have a new leader in 1 week! Action begins soon in Cairo!


Finally, finally, finally...Exciting times!

Bags are packed in Rotterdam! I cant believe that its almost time to elect a new leader for AIESEC globally! Its been the fastest year of my life...

The action begins soon in Palmera Beach Resort, a beautiful resort on the Red Sea in Ain El Sokhna, about 2 hrs from Cairo.

Will write more about the Live webpage which will be updated every day from IPM! So stay tuned about the crazy action at International Presidents Meeting 2007!

Friday, February 02, 2007

HP: The last book!!!


Bring it on!

After J K Rowling announced the name of her seventh and last installment of her Harry Potter series in December, the author announced the date it will be released on her Web site. Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows will be out on July 21.

So many mysteries to unfold, so many puzzles to be patched up!
THE LAST BOOK OF HARRY POTTER series...Cant wait to read this!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Madrid Team Days - AI ER Team!

ER Team looking happy
Time: 23 00


ER Team looking really 'happy' ;) after some spirits that entered our bodies!
Time: 02 00 AM

(3 hours before our flight back to Rotterdam - I still dont know how we managed to get on the flight - or does anyone from the team remember? I dont think so)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Poker Night III


Two victories in a row for me! I seriously think I have a Poker face...

This time (like last time) the evening started at 9 00 PM and ended at 2 00 AM in the night. However this time we had 11 people participating!

Overall, Poker nights have become a big hit on AI - the most awaited 'evening of the month' in our team!

Some classy pics from the great evening!


Sunday, January 07, 2007

Christmas holidays - Part II - Madrid, Spain and some new year focus areas :)

Dates: 29th Dec - 2nd Jan
Location: Madrid, Spain

Cornelia, Nico , Mairi and I had an absolute blast over New Years! It was very refreshing and re-energizing to laze around and have tons of fun in Madrid - though I must admit the girls made me walk so much - I haven't walked that much EVER in a span of 4 days in my life than I did in Madrid. But I loved it :) I definitely had a great time! Couldnt have been better - thank you all of them for making it so special with your unique personalities :)

Madrid is a beautiful place, really ancient and medieval. The buildings are old and the environment was so perfect - heard a random group of musicians playing on the street, was absolutely melodious!

Some key highlights:

1. To start off, the tricky part was that all of them wanted to buy pairs of shoes, but hey to do that, I visited almost 90% of all shoe shops that exist in Madrid :) I had already refreshed my entire wardrobe as I mentioned in my post about holidays in India, so basically I dint have much shopping to do.

2. Visiting the royal palace and the arts museum.


The palace is fascinating - you can check more pics on the flickr badge. Learnt a lot about arts, definitely. Some of the paintings depict shocking and extremely interesting things which I absolutely had no clue of. About 3 hrs spent in that was absolutely worth it. I was always on the english walkie talkie that I had hired to continuously hear about what different paintings had to reveal, their style - some really interesting stuff!

3. New Year's eve in Puerta del Sol, Madrid

There's a tradition in Madrid that when the clock strikes 12, with every dong you need to eat one piece of grape and wish for 1 thing. So basically with 12 dongs, you need to eat 12 grapes and have 12 wishes ready. Now since its a matter of seconds, you can see almost everyone chomping away the grapes with every dong. We all had some reflection and had a paper with 12 wishes ready, it was really cool to be amongst thousands of people - the square was absolutely packed and the atmosphere was full of frenzy - crazy!!!

4. Staying at the hostel

The hostel which was booked last minute turned out to be pretty cosy and nice - came to know that it was awarded the best hostel in Europe in 2004 and was pretty economical considering the last minute booking. The name was Cat's hostel - though it sounds like its a dodgy place (believe me, I was so sure that its gonna be so dodgy with mysterious people - girls (associating with cats), but well turned out to be a really nice hostel! Met some people randomly - Argentians, Australians - had a good time with them!

5. Having hot chocolate
Chocolate a la taza as people call it - thick hot chocolate! Loved it...

Last but not the least, some good reflections for the New Year resolutions. Few focus areas that I pondered over and identified for 2007:

a. Health - My love for sports and exercising and gym (plus a huge need for pumping in some muscles into my body) led me to take this as a focus area. I would want to continue sports and practice weights (already bought weights here in Rotterdam) to build some muscles. Also making sure I go back to cooking habits like in Sweden (atleast when I am in Rotterdam and not travelling)

b. Consciously give in for all my relationships - love, friends, family etc. I realized after my 1,5 year of visiting India that I want to keep my family happy and I could see them being so happy when they could see me and taking care of them, giving them presents, spending quality time with them etc. Secondly I realized after being with close friends that this is something I cherish and would consciously want to give in to keeping in touch, sending those emails and phone calls to keep that touch point to know how everyone's lives are going and sharing the wonderful experiences we are going through.

c. Learning a Language I realized after being in Spain that I love spanish and I had to be discplined to get this going. The best period I realized to pick up the language would be to get a start in the first 7 months where there are so many Spanish speaking people on our team. Mondays and Thursday lunches are booked for Spanish classes with our office administrator who has been taking Spanish classes.

d. Reading 12 books in 2007 (atleast) I realized how much I learnt and loved reading books. I finished 'Blue Ocean Strategy' and now 'Blink' over flights. Blink is about the power of thinking without thinking. Definitely an interesting way to see how thin slicing and making fast decisions can be made effectively. Any recommendations about good reads - please let me know :)

e. Professionally - I have decided that I want to consciously put more thought into maintaining my networks - since I meet so many cool people through my role on AI and after I finish in 7 months, I dont want to lose this. So I will want to put more conscious thought into structuring my networks.


Overall, a great time - now back in Rotterdam, refreshed and re-energized for the last 7 months of my term!

Wishes from my side to everyone for a year filled with success and happiness!

For pictures - please check the flickr badge on the right!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Christmas holidays - Part I - India

I have never felt so good to be back home than during my last visit.

It was 1,5 years that I was away and then the first sign was the warm air that hit my face as soon as I landed in Delhi and you have the Punjabi accent in full flow. One of the guys (about mid fifties) who had come from Sweden back to Delhi after a long time, started to randomly talk to me in the immigration queue- "Oh Putr kaise ho, kaisa lag raha hai vapas apni dharti mein? (Oh son, how are you, how are you feeling to be back in your homeland) mera bharat mahan. It was hilarious to see their children (about my age) getting embarassed and poking his tummy to stop shouting like this in a loud voice. But he kept on harping about the fact that it was so good to be back home and that it was his land.

Welcome to India :) These things can never happen anywhere...

Few highlights about my trip to India:

Meeting my parents
It was wonderful to eat ghar ki daal, roti and talk to them about my experiences. It was amazing to feel the home environment and spend quality time with my parents.

Meeting relatives
Well, one of the definite highlights was a small party organized where we invited all my close relatives and it was great to see all of them and socializing them. There were a total of about 80 - 90 people :) The biggest question posed to me during that time was when I am getting married and in case I am interested to start looking for girls, they can introduce me to few girls who had inquired about this. This was definitely one of the things that hit me since thats the last thing I will ever think about at this point in my life. But then, well thats what home sweet home has in store for you, something unexpected :)

Meeting special friends
It was indeed very special to meet some of my friends for life. Thanks Shimoni for hosting a wonderful Mexican dinner at her place. It was great to meet Kartik, Shimoni, Bhavik and his wife, Pruthvi, Ketan, Kreta, Kavita for one long evening :) I always feel refreshed talking to them and having conversations of all kind. Thanks everyone for a special evening!

Attending Local AIESEC congress of my LC Baroda
This was another highlight since I havent attended any local AIESEC conference for about 3 years now! It was great talking to young AIESEC members and sharing experiences with them. Also it was extremely interesting to see how things are shaping up at a local level and the reality at a local level. Also there were LCP elections which was special as well! Brought back memories from my memorable association with my LC

Shopping

I have never found Shopping so cheap. Probably with 200 euros I could have imagine 3 - 4 things if I would have bought them in Europe. But I managed to refresh my entire wardrobe from pairs of shoes, to sleeping bags, to new shirts, t-shirts, formal pants, pair of jeans, boxers, flip flops, food, warm jacket, gifts for people... basically tons of things!

Though it was only 8 days - every day was packed with the above mentioned things! Absolutely loved it...