Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Traveling from Margao, Goa to Bangalore and back

I travel a lot between these two places using a variety of means.

Air: Dabolim airport to bangalore airport is about 55 minutes. Dabolim airport is small (recently expanded) and fairly easy to get to. Bangalore airport is considered modern and large but getting to and from the city is really painful.

Car:  From Bangalore, you take a major highway called NH4 up to Hubli. That would be about 425 kms. It has plenty of tollgates, so have plenty of money. But the road is excellent and there are several places where you can stop and grab something to eat. You will pass Tumkur and Davangere, at least.   When you reach the outskirts of Hubli, you will hit a large roundabout. Take the road INTO the town and ask for the Hubli-Karwar road.  That would be on your left.  Hubli to Karwar, on the coast would be about 165 kms and the road is quite nice and smooth. You will hit a town called Yellapur. Stop there for lunch at the simple Shanbhag Hotel next to a Petrol station. Don't forget to get some amazing Mango pickle from the store in the restaurant.

As you continue, you will hit the coastal highway. Hit a right to Karwar.

Karwar to Margao is about 73 kms along a very scenic route next to the sea and along hills and plenty of greenery.  Pay 250 toll to get into Goa.

Buses: I have traveled only once between Ankola (near Karwar) and Bangalore. It was uncomfortable, but cheap and I guess safe. I reached on time. Auto rickshaw drivers in Bangalore are waiting to pounce on you. So be careful and don't get cheated.

Train:  You can get a Margao to Bangalore train or a Karwar to Bangalore train. Margao -Bangalore isn't as frequent as it could be. Karwar-Bangalore is more frequent but passes through Mangalore and so the journey is longer.  Plus you would then need to travel from Margao to Karwar by road (plenty of local buses). Use www.irctc.co.in to book your tickets. 3A or 2A is most comfortable.

Let me know if this was useful.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Sherlock Holmes in Japan Book review by © Aleš Kolodrubec, president of the Czech Society of Sherlock Holmes

Book review by © Aleš Kolodrubec, president of the Czech Society of Sherlock Holmes www.sherlockholmessociety.in/2013/10/sherlock-holmes-in-japan-book-review.html


Sunday, October 27, 2013

Projects I am working on

1. Two novels based on Classical Music

2. The Collected Works of the famous Japanese writer Akira Yamashita

3. Non-fiction: The Art of Consensus Building

4. Non-fiction:  Sales Process Management

5. Non-Fiction: Proposal Writing (the next edition of my book with major enhancements including a workbook and video)

6. A top-secret satire on the literary world

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Congress and the Gandhis

The very essence of democracy precludes the concept of any single family controlling the political system of a country. We are well within our rights to ask about the education, experience and intellectual depth of this man. What is his source of livelihood? What educational degree does he possess? What are his religious beliefs and how does he apply them? (No problem if he is an atheist). Does he have only an Indian passport or an Italian one as well? All are important to me in deciding whether he has the qualities I look forward to in a leader. No single family can continue contributing to the 'polity ' of  any nation unquestioned and uninterrupted. Otherwise, how different is  this from a new kind of caste system and a monarchy?

It is in the interest of the Congress and the Gandhis to keep a substantial segment of the population of India poor, uneducated and uninformed. This segment will, without question, be affected by emotion because their
lives are driven by the sheer daily need to survive and they cannot think for long periods of time on strategic matters, not because they are stupid, but because their circumstances do not give them time, access to information and the right kind of exposure to make considered decisions. Maslow's theory does matter. Therefore talking about generations past helps his case, though it is shallow and has no meaning  in the present context. And therefore, Rahul Gandhi will not engage with an educated audience who will have tough questions and cannot be bulldozed by tears about his Grandma.

There is no governance on the ground in India. We watch our 'rulers' (what does this mean? How dare they deign to 'rule' us? ) zip around in cars with  shaded windows, creating systems that are useful for them in looting us  unquestioned, generation after generation.

Rahul Gandhi and the Congress do not have the right to rule us for ever.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Monday, October 21, 2013

My review of Neeta Iyer's book on Goodreads

Find_Love.comFind_Love.com by Neeta Iyer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm supposed to be too old to read such books, since I am a pompous old man.

So why did I like it?

Its fresh, original and fun. There is nothing pretentious or forced. Humour, a chirpy way of bouncing back from disappointments that might have made someone else feel rather bad - it makes you want to keep reading.

The end was a shade abrupt but then again, maybe I felt that way because I wanted to read more. haha!

I could whine about the Hindi phrases a bit, but that would be unfair. They work very well and add some zing.

Well done Neeta! I hope you become a best-selling and critically acclaimed author but I also hope it doesn't go to your head; such fresh happy writing shouldn't be tainted with the weight of experience!! haha!

View all my reviews
My review of Sriramana Muliya's book

Frankly SpookingFrankly Spooking by Sriramana Muliya
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Hey, this is a really cool book. good literature doesn't have to be miserable to be considered great! Ramana has written a book that I have thoroughly enjoyed! The man's mind is fertile, evil and we need to watch out for him. My only complaint is that it is only 192 pages! I bet he has many more tales. The style is fluid and easy and not pretentious in the least. Discard those sorry "elegantly written deep insights into the human condition" books and read stuff that will keep you engaged and scare the daylights out of you - and acknowledge that this is what is meant as good reading!!!! Congrats Ramana and my best wishes for many more horrifying tales. Unsure if I will live to read them! hahaha!

View all my reviews
Read some reviews of Sherlock Holmes in Japan here

Reviews on goodreads

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Playing the violin for Chunnu

Here is a nice video of me strumming the violin playing for Chunnu, one of my dogs.

Take by Jagdish Keshav on June 1 2013

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Here's an interview that you might wish to read on Techgoss.  It's about me, my interests and my books.

An interview

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Book Release

OK, my book The Time Merchants and other strange tales is finally out

May take a few days before it reaches Amazon and Flipkart. But here is the cover.

The Publisher is LiFi Publications and the Foreword has been written by Prof Nikhil Govind of Manipal University.