Some 'YESSS' moments of 2011.
The movie 'Golconda High School', based on my first novel 'The Men Within' was released. I loved it.
I visited the Himalayas for the first time and was awed by the sight. I also visited Haridwar and Rishikesh, Dehradun, Mussoorie and a few other nearby places.
I met some interesting people - Ruskin Bond the writer, Srini Alluri the cyclist and the social worker who cycled from London to Srinagar for humanity, Patrick San Francisco the healer from Goa who is a doctor who heals through universal energy, Suryprakash Rao who brings a lot of passion into his social work concerning food, books and health.
I wrote 468 blog posts which is an improvement over last year. I started writing out my ideas, thoughts, paradoxes and writing the blog has helped me grow in many ways. It has made me more expressive, made me do certain things that I would not have and also placed on me a pleasurable responsibility of writing for those who care to read my blog.
I read 40 odd books including some tomes I have forever been putting off. Glad to have read Roots, Untouchable, A Fine Balance - all dealing with oppression. I discovered fantastic writers like Rohinton Mistry, Steinbeck, Namita Devidayal, Manohar Malgoankar, Raja Rao, Haley.
I watched over 80 movies, most of them thanks to Sagar who shared his collection with an open heart. In those I was amazed at the movies made of the World War era - Schindler's List, Kanal, Ashes and Diamonds and delved into history once again to see what we have done as a human race. The Irani movies, 15 of which I watched opened up a new world for me where they made movies fearlessly. The classics from Kurosawa, Woody Allen, Kubrick and others were fascinating to watch.
I rediscovered the joy of going to music concerts - this time alone - and enjoyed the 'Metallica' experience. Plan to go to as many concerts as I can.
Amar and I did a first, of doing a workshop in Telugu for workmen, and I was pleasantly surprised at my own capability to converse fluently in Telugu and make my points emphatically.
I got my 'Misfit' out once again and went at it with an intent to get it going this time. Two visits to Bangalore, endless hours on it, and I think I am just about there now, with a manuscript that is 98% done and sent off to Keerti for her comments last evening.
I interviewed some interesting people - Keerti Ramachandra, my editor, Suresh Reddy, friend and businessman, Ruskin Bond the writer, Suryaprakash Rao the doctor and social worker, Srini Alluri, idealistic entrepreneur, social worker and cyclist and Anjali who gave me the perspective of life as seen by a four year old.
I understood the meaning of taking responsibility for my health and I think it has made a difference already.
There were a few talks and workshops, seminars and conferences, panel discussions and so on.
I owe much thanks to Ramaraju and the team at Gap Miners who are my constant source of inspiration. Sagar for his movies. Raja, Shobha, Harsha and Vinod for their books. Keerti, Anita Nair for their support on my literary pursuit. Amar for keeping the corporate workshops flag flying. Vidyuth for keeping my cricketing side alive by letting me loose on his Under 16 and Under 22 wards. The Hindu, MRF, XSEED, Sloka and to all those who invited me to speak and participate in events big and small. My family at Hyderabad and Pune for their support and for keeping me grounded, my brother and sisters for being there unconditionally, nieces and nephews for all the wonderful perspectives they bring.
My wonderful set of friends who make me laugh and cry with their stupidity - Koni for keeping me laughing when I find nothing to laugh about in the world, Ranjan with whom I enjoyed the Himalayan sojourn, Sanjay with whom I visited Mahabaleshwar, Topper who made me laugh uncontrollably in Hubli, Don, Kiran, Mama, Madhav who keeps me on my toes on the blog every once in a while, Naresh who is always in touch, Vinod for our coffee outings, Vandana and Ramesh, Rajesh and Nisha for being wonderful hosts, and all other friends who call and share things with me with a trust that make this life that much more blessed. All those who read the blog and share your views, ASR, Raja, Ranjani, Satish and others. Shobha for keeping the faith on this journey and Anjali for making me wonder and showing me the joy of unconditional love. I think I can use this blog as the acknowledgement in the next book.
More as I remember through the day.