Buddha temple – Man Fatt Lam – Bedok, Singapore

Simplest way to reach, MRT – get down Tanah Merah and walk towards Semei, take right at first signal you see and the temple is 4 blocks away.

Nearest places to eat – Not many options .. maybe Simpang Bedok … Very tough to get Vegetarian in this area. You might have to contend with bakery items and fresh juices.

Time to view – 15 mins -1 hour, depending on interest.

There are 4 different blocks, but the most prominent one was closed. So we only got to see the side blocks. That did not disappoint us as we got to see a sleeping Buddha.

There was another deity in a different block. Check out the arrangement for Chinese New Year.

 

I found this statue to be pretty unique. It gives you the image of the deity being suspended.

 

All said, the thing I loved about this temple were the cool dudes at the entrance.

 

 

Please feel free to comment.

Places to visit in Singapore – Buddha tooth relic temple – Chinatown

Simplest way to reach, uber/cab. Just mention the postal code (058840) and you get dropped over there. Simple!

Cost effective ways – equidistant from Outram park, Telok Ayer as well as Chinatown MRT.

Nearest places to eat – So many options at Telok Ayer street area… Dig deeper for Vegetarian places but Subway is there in case you are too hungry.

Time to view – 1-3 hours, depending on interest.

The temple has 4 floors and a terrace. Because it was raining, we did not venture to the top,but I heard there is a large praying wheel & botanic garden over there.

Not going into much details, the temple is super beautiful. There are over 100 Buddhas, some of them showing various mudras (finger positions), some carrying flowers/gems or items and even snakes.

 

 

 

We also loved reading the story of the Buddha while we walk through the third floor. There were also some bodyguards around various Buddha that looked more comical than imposing.

Overall a really good place to spend 1-3 hours even if one is not a pure Buddhist.

 

Brilliant football analysis – Goalkeeping tips

As a kid, I had always wanted to have a football coach. Though I was super keen to learn and had some sort of football awareness, I never really had a coach or mentor to help me get better.Plus it was the nineties and there was Sachin, so football stood no chance to develop in Chennai.

Watching some of these videos, I sometimes wonder how amazingly lucky this generation is.

Here, Gary Neville explains some of the developments of David De Gea over the years. With the use of technology, we are easily able to understand how posture can decide the outcome of any situation. As an excuse to my frail frame, I used to joke that football is a sport played in the mind, however this video simply takes my statement and covers it with gold!

https://youtu.be/_JBdTD4RgnI

#footballanalysis
#goalkeepingtips
#daviddegea

Giving up

Some posts give you inspiration. Some make you reminiscence about the past. Some articles take you places. Some make you to think.

I guess it is a recent phenomenon for people to give up something for a period of time and then write about it.

Not long ago I saw the video of one man who left the internet for a year.

Just this morning, there is an article about a woman who had a buy nothing year which ultimately made her debt free.

While I believe these are extreme measures taken to prove a point, there are some key takeaways resonating through these experiences.

  1. Refaining from any habit takes a lot of discipline to execute
  2. Early enthusiasm quickly changes to frustration and boredom
  3. There is always the temptation to turn back
  4. Your support systems can make or break your resolve
  5. Returning back after your exodus can be more daunting than ever
  6. Though you become a master of the habit, you still need to be wary of getting sucked back into old ways

What are some of the vices of these modern times that you would like to reduce/remove altogether from your systems?

I was molested – too!

Sunday, April, 2001.

It was 4:30 in the evening. Time to pick my bat up, call Ajay and Ajit and head down for our cricket matches.

But that day was different. I felt odd. I was alone, inside my house and on my bed. I did not feel like going out. For some reason, I felt safe where I was. I was still confused by what had happened that morning.

It had become a routine for me to head to Mylapore every weekend. My cousin Aravind would take me to play with his friends and it was always fun. His friends sometimes joked about how I was younger and yet more useful for the team than Aravind himself was. Being only 14, I did not know this was all banter and not a direct reflection of my cricketing abilities.

I would leave early morning on Saturday, join his friends for the morning cricket, enjoy lunch with my aunt, join another session during the evening, enjoy dinner, stay the night & catch the morning bus at 6:30 on Sunday.

Mylapore in the early morning had a charm to it. There would be a lot of Sai Baba devotees in the bus. Having them around in the half-crowded bus made me feel calm and safe. Despite my introversions, I used to smile at some of the regulars.

When this devotee sat next to me, I had no issues with it. He looked like any of them, about middle age, fair, full shave, with religious marks on his forehead. I had smiled at him when he sat and got a smile in return. I had the window seat and was enjoying the breeze and early morning sights of Chennai.

Not even five minutes had passed when I felt his hand on my thigh. I initially thought he had kept it as support against the swerving bus. How wrong was I? For his hands then started to move up, slowly but surely. I looked into his face and he gave me a smile, as if it was OK. Thrice I pushed his hands away from my thigh. Every time he would start touching me again. Eventually, I got up and left saying my stop had come.

I did not have money to afford another ticket and I had to walk half the distance to my house. It did not once bother me, as my mind was shocked by what had happened.

____________________________________________________________________

The time was 4:35 when I heard Ajay calling me for cricket. I picked my bat up and left. It was all I could do.

 

___________________________________________________________________

15 years later, I still remember……….. I think twice before boarding public transport.

 

 

Nostalgia – Celebrating ABC

It had finally arrived, the day that he would lock up the house once and for all. True, he had moved out five years back but it was still operational and he always found himself popping in and out from time to time.

His nostalgia started almost instantaneously. The familiar creek of the grill gate before he could reach the door. He could picture a younger version of him sneaking in during midnight, after spending endless hours talking with his childhood friends…There was this one night back in 2005, when he smuggled Rajath and Shankar in to watch Champions league football… Then those nights when he would call Hiresh & Prasad  and sometimes, Sid and head to “Midnight Masala” for second dinner. He felt happy they were still in touch after so many years.

As he pushed the door open, he faced the wall to the right and imagined 3 large suitcases. There was an image of his brother smiling at him. His excitement palpable, coupled with a hint of nervousness, for he was off to US of A and a new life. When was this, 2003?

To the left of this wall would be the dining table, and before that sprang the image of an eclectic mix of people.. There was his uncle, and his uncle’s cousin, his friend Kiran from college, Hiresh, Prasad, Nishanth, Ajit and Ajay… All of them going through a frenzy of emotions, watching a young team India led by some new kid called Dhoni winning the first ever T20 world cup… Nothing unites Indians as cricket does. Which year was it?

As his eyes adjusted to the dim light, he saw the hall where he had spent countless (after) hours before the TV. He would not miss SS music at 11PM back in those formative days..

Then came the balcony.. There he was, speaking through a cordless phone with his girl.. Little did he imagine they would be married eight years later, but looking at that happy kid reassured him that life had turned out the right way… She was always one of his first contacts when dial up  happened and he could use Yahoo! Messenger.. when he got his first second hand motorola.. and his first second hand Nokia 1100.. and his first Sony, Samsung and now Nexus… As he went to close the door, he thought he saw the kid give him a wink!

He hardly spent time in the kitchen, but his eyes automatically moved towards the shelf where the money was kept. He was a good kid, but there were instances where he had indulged in taking an extra twenty.

The bedroom was his haven… No matter how hard life had been or how distracted he felt, he had this one place where he could get back and collect his thoughts. Even years after leaving the house, he always imagined himself in the room, with the air-conditioner and fan to provide the rhythm.. Looking into the room made him realize how much he missed being stress free & young.

He had to take a moment before opening the door to the other room. For he knew each square inch had a memory..

There he was, teaching Kiran math.

There was the computer, where he wrote his first blog.

There was the corner below the window where he and Aarti sneaked their first hug.

The window through which he used to stare for hours when it rained.

The memory of his exams being cancelled due to monsoons… and “Where’s the party tonight” song playing for the exact reason..

His fake attempts at studying for GRE & CFA

His friends toasting him the night before his departure to UK..

His meets for Chennaibuyz – the company he tried to build

 

…………………………………………………….

As tears welled in his eyes, he rushed out, for he could take it no more… amidst all these ever changing memories, the house had remained constant.. and with it had that one person who had lived in it..

and now she was changing too?

He could no longer bear the emotions.. he ran upstairs and gave the keys back to his grandmom, saying that he could not lock the door by his own..

“Oh you silly emotional fool… I thought my purpose of moving out is to spend time with your baby girl… Looks like there is more than one baby in the house now!”

With speed that defied her age, the women took the elevator down to close the door of the house.. and with it, multiple chapters of the book – my life.