actuality.log


All entries tagged 'photograph'

Friday, November the 12th, 2010

I did not take very many pictures in England when I was there earlier in the year because I wasn’t in the frame of mind to do so. What I did instead was to take a few portraits of people that mattered to me during my stay. Here are three such portraits; released now because I felt the journal could do with a splash of colour.

Woman in England

Woman in England

Woman in England

Sunday, August the 8th, 2010

I took one of my regular trips to the local SOS Children’s Village a couple of days ago. When I first started receiving my student stipend years ago, I began supporting two children there: a 9-month old baby girl, Maria Merlin and a few year old boy called Venugopal. Today, six years later, they’re both growing up to be cute, playful children.

Merlin and her mom

While sitting at the SOS offices to pay my yearly donation, it occurred to me that I really should be doing more, since I have come a long way (financially) since those early student days. So that’s exactly what I did! Starting from this year, I am proud to announce that I support two more children. Introducing Nagarajan (foreground) and Veeravimin:

Nagarajan and Veeravimin

Now, doesn’t this bit of news make you feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside too?

Sunday, April the 26th, 2009

I shot a small series while hanging out with some friends late last evening. With its old school colours and comfortable ambience, I kinda like how it turned out.

Molly and Tim

Friday, July the 25th, 2008

I have no better words to explain things than to say, “I’ve fallen into a sort of anti-routine.” Much of how my life goes on now seems to be entirely contrary to how things were when I was in grad school. For starters, I’m spending a lot more time outdoors—socialising, hiking, playing, shooting pictures.

A group of happy campers

Crazier still, much of my time at work also seems to be spent socialising and laying down plans for further fun after work and on the weekends! The only times I’ve seemed to have gotten any real work done are the few days I’ve forcibly isolated myself at home. And this has been necessary from time to time, for the world has gone entirely topsy-turvy: Work stuff isn’t trivial any more. Much of what I’m looking at right now I haven’t delved into before, requiring quite a bit of catching up.

Either way, what I guess I started off trying to say is that I’ve fallen into a routine here. And even if it the specifics of this routine starkly contrast how things were before, constancy is not the best inspiration for me to write—explaining the recent silence.

Lonely girl by a lake

May be I should just get irked enough about the ghetto neighbourhood I’m temporarily domiciled in, so I can entertain you better. Or at least, try to with greater frequency.

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Wednesday, July the 9th, 2008

you wouldn’t dress like that.

I’ve been wanting to pen this for a while now, but I’ve been too busy… having fun!

I arrived here expecting things to be cold. And by that, I don’t mean the temperature outside (that I can handle, given my training over these past years)—I expected the people to be very cold. I thought I was going to be isolated and end up lonely and miserable. Truth be told, I almost wanted things to be that way, so that it would hasten my move to England.

But alas, it wasn’t to be.

I really like this place and it’s people. Everybody is warm and helpful, and they make it a point to drag you into whatever shenanigans they’re aiming to pull. Consequently, I too have begun leaving work early, and most of my evenings and all of my weekends have been packed with fun activities. In fact, I probably didn’t go to sleep at all last weekend, choosing instead to attend one party late Saturday, which sort of lasted until late Sunday… around which time the next one began!

There are definitely some perks to the sun not setting.

Well-oiled colleagues

(Not getting yelled at by the cops for disorderly conduct at 4 a.m. is not one of them.)

I need to get going now. I’m joining a group of people for the awesome does of fun that is frisbee golf; an ingenious sport that replaces the dullness of golf with the hilarity of athletically-challenged science dorks trying to throw things over long distances!

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Wednesday, July the 9th, 2008

Stepping up

Wednesday, April the 23rd, 2008

Catherine

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Sunday, March the 9th, 2008
Tagged: ,

Like I was saying, colour has been on my mind a lot lately.

Multi-coloured peppers

Saturday, March the 8th, 2008

Straw painting

Friday, February the 22nd, 2008

I’m going to keep this brief because I am not in an environment (or a frame of mind) that’s conducive to writing. Also, I know that the entries over the past weeks haven’t been the most enthralling, but I give you what I can.

After over five years, I stepped into a “barber shop” earlier this week. It’s not like I’d let my hair grow into an unmanageable mess in the interim, but for years, I was getting it done in places that referred to themselves as “salons.” Now I know why: Men don’t know how to cut other men’s hair.

But that’s not an important story, for supposedly my hair will grow back. Or the rest of it will fall off, or something.

What is important is something else that happened over the course of the week. Since I’d received a work permit to legally pursue employment in this country, I had the option of reinstating my salary as a grad student while I pondered my future employment prospects (since I do some work for my uni bosses from time to time anyway). When approached about this, I declined, quite enjoying my “free bird” status. You see, I don’t need the money right now, and I’d much rather idle guilt-free instead of getting paid… and feeling guilty about idling.

Regarding my future employment choices, I seem to be my biggest stumbling block. Even so, I intend on finalising my decision by the end of this month. I just wish I were as enthusiastic about science as I have been about colour over these past weeks.

Coloured flour

Saturday, February the 16th, 2008

Silky layers

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Tuesday, January the 22nd, 2008

This isn’t something I wanted to bring up on the journal, but I’m going to anyway because I’ve been starved for content.

My computer behaved splendidly for the better part of the last year-and-a-half. Through the many drops and liquid spills and exposures to frigid colds, it’s been my steady workhorse allowing me to get a lot of work done. With it, I’ve actually managed to wrap up my grad school research and compose my entire dissertation over numerous tireless nights.

But recently, it’s all been going awry.

A couple of months ago, shortly after the release of Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5), I installed it on my laptop replacing the venerable OS that preceded it, Tiger. And that, as far as I can tell, was the beginning of the end. You see, one of the hallmarks of my computer was how stable it was. No matter how much abuse it was put through, I could go without rebooting it for weeks, and every time I closed its lid amidst working on something tedious, it would cleanly suspend and resume to exactly how it was when I later opened the lid prepared to continue working.

That was the story with Tiger.

With Leopard, these uptimes dropped from weeks to hours, and suspend-and-resume was now about as pleasant as tugging in the wrong direction after getting a pube stuck on your foreskin. At one point, I became so paranoid about losing work that I stopped suspending it entirely. This might not seem like a big deal to some people, but it’s a huge deal for me, as I like to work when I want to work—not when my computer intends on cooperating with me.

A self portrait using the MBP

But hey, its web-cam still works wonders!

There is a lot more to this story, which does get worse—like the primary programs I need for research don’t compile or work on it for esoteric reasons—but I shan’t bore you with the details. I’ll just leave you with my forced realisation that moving to Leopard was a dumb move.

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Sunday, January the 6th, 2008

Emerging from the south of my country, moreover so from a city and community rife with anti-Hindi sentiment, it’s not surprising that I hadn’t seen a single Hindi movie during the course of my entire life. All that changed a couple of days ago, when my kin dragged me along to a screening of Taare Zameen Par, a quaint little feature with a moving social message.

Hindi movie ticket

It’s because of this heartwarming message and the wonderful acting all across the board that I’m willing to overlook the fairytale ending, the needless random breakouts into song and dance, and the overly colour-saturated cinematography, to proclaim that it was a very moving and delightful experience; something which I had least expected.

I can heartily recommend this movie to anyone who’s curious about what Indian cinema has to offer (it screens here complete with well-written English subtitles) though I recognise that it isn’t even remotely representative of the standard fare, to anyone who knows someone with a learning disability or mental handicap, or to anyone who’s experienced a certain very third world mentality I try hard to rally against: That if you’re not the absolute best at what you do, be it anything from not scoring at the top of your class in an inconsequential test in first grade, to not earning the most amongst your peers upon completing your education, you’re an utter failure.

In summary, if you belong to any of those groups, please try it. You won’t be disappointed.

Friday, December the 21st, 2007

Spending time with the family doesn’t just mean lengthy conversations about life, the universe and everything; it also means cooing over ancient pictures of tots!

A picture of me when I was little

Monday, October the 29th, 2007

Undecided


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