Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Dear Mom

Godrej has been one brand which one can always find in our household. Their products are not only safe but give amazing results. So on the occasion of Mother's Day Godrej asked us to elaborate on why one's best adviser is always their mother.

My mother has always been my first expert for anything and everything. From choosing a dress to choosing a career she has always been one true guide and I cannot thank her enough for being there always.

When I passed my 12th exams, I was looking for engineering courses. My entrance exam results were decent enough and I wanted to take Mechanical Engineering. This was no lightly taken decision and I spent two years on this decision. But being a girl, everyone I knew was shocked when I told them about my decision. Most tried to persuade me to take "safe" branches like computers or IT. Many said that Mechanical is not for girls. Everyone, from my father to the stranger I met at one counselling session in a college, were hell bent to make me change my decision. But I could not imagine myself in any other branch. Mechanical was and is my calling. I had spent my childhood plying with Mechanic toys, rockets and cars. However, after such a response, I was second guessing my decision. I felt sad and seeing this mother gave me the best advice I ever got. She told me that if this is what you really and absolutely want then do it. Mute out everyone else and follow your heart. She even convinced my father and supported me till the end. Last week I graduated with an 8.9 GPA and it is all thanks to my mom. Had she not supported me and encouraged me to follow my heart, I probably would have changed to Computers or IT and detested it all along.

Another, incident where my mom's advice helped me a lot was when I in 5th grade. There was a boy in my class who was very famous for being notorious. Teacher opted out of teaching our class just because of him. Due to all this, he didn't have many friends in school and I saw him eating lunch all by himself. When I informed my mother about this she told me join him wherever I see him eating lunch alone from now on. I was hesitant at first but she insisted that I do as asked. So next day me and my group of about five girls were eating lunch in the school ground and I saw him eating lunch behind a tree. I asked my friends to invite him but no one wanted to. After a lot of convincing they decided that he could eat with us but I had to invite him. Hence, I went, a little terrified, over to invite him. At first he thought I was playing a prank but my reputation was not of a prankster so he eventually agreed. He came over and had lunch with us. Turns out he was quite funny. He told great jokes and over time we became good friends. I am in touch with him even today. 

So, had my mother not encouraged me to be friends with this person, I would have never got to know him. I would have missed up on a friend.

These are just two of the many instances where my mother’s advice has helped me find my way. Without her I would be completely lost in this world. And I love you mom from the bottom of my heart. Happy Mother’s Day!!! 

Friday, May 15, 2015

My Airtel App: What I like !

Airtel has launched the much awaited My Airtel App and being the loyal customer that I am, I got my hands on it as soon as I could. This app is the cornucopia of Airtel's products. It is a first-of-its-kind by any telecom operator in the country! All users including prepaid and postpaid can use it for paying bills, recharge, buying products etc. It also allows you to track all the past transactions and even your usage can be tracked with this. You manage all your DTH, Broadband, Prepaid & postpaid services in one place. You can recharge your DTH, track your account usage, track your service requests, buy products, and add your family & friends’ numbers and much much more. It is the APP for all Airtel subscribers. You can do all this using just your phone.

How amazing is that!

After using this app the features which really appealed to me are:

1. Airtel Surprises: This is just amazing. I think this is one feature that really mandates everyone to get this app right now! As the name suggests Airtel Surpises surprises you every time you pay your bill or get a recharge with a coupon! And not only just Airtel coupons but names like Gelato Italiano, Monginis, Cafe Coffee Day, Myntra, Flipkart, and many more are all included in the list.
So every time you pay your bill you get a SURPRISE!!!  Payed you bill; here go get a coffee with 50 bucks off at cafe coffee day! Amazing!

2. I WANT TO! This feature is like a personal task bar. It allows you to save all your most needed/ most used features within the reach of a button.  You can save your own shortcuts on the home screen under the "I want to". So anything and everything you want is just a tab away. No need to scroll though long menus two three times of a day just for that one feature. You can simply put them on your home screen and they are instantly accessible.

3. Safety: With Airtel one always knows that safety comes first. They are famous for their secure networks and this app lives up to every expectation. It allows you to add credit cards, debit cards, ATMs whatever you may want for faster payments. So no need to fill in your card numbers all the time and every time you have to make a payment. Also this comes with PCIDSS certification so you know it doesn't get safer than this. Even governments recommend this certification.

4. Track your bills: This is a life saver. No more end of the month heart attacks when you see you’re DTH or post paid bills. It helps you keep a leash on your expenses and keep the bank balance healthy.

So all in all this is a pretty great app and I recommend you get it as soon as possible.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

#EkNayiLeague : Are you Ready?

Kapil Dev is one person who needs no introduction especially in our country. His career is as legendary as it gets. Credited for being arguably the best captain along with the top player of his time, he is a role model of many.

Recently Mr. Dev launched a campaign called #EkNayiLeague through social channels. He hasn't given out much about it yet but through some videos he shares his thoughts on some recent happenings and people who have been in news lately.

In one such video he talks about Mahendra Singh Dhoni's decision of retirement. Mr. Dev does not seem too pleased with it. He recounts the days when he was retiring and the legendary Dev Anand in his trademark style told him that stars never retire. He also adds (in Dev Anand's Trademark Style no less) that since MSD has worked so hard so far to build the team and now he should not give up. And I couldn't agree more.

Sania Mirza is another personality whom Mr. Dev appreciated in his video. He says that about three hundred or so girls play tennis in our country. And if out of those three hundred if some are chosen in the top twenty in the world then it is a feat. The kind of infrastructure and support available to female sports-persons is already a matter of deep consideration and some like Sania Mirza not only flourish in such environments they conquer it. Keep going, we are proud of you Ms. Mirza!

Another video focuses on Yuvraj Singh.He is true Phoenix who has risen again  by beating all odds. Mr. Dev talks about how in his time sport persons weren't given much money. They just played for the love of the game. But toady when people like Yuvraj Singh make deals worth 16 crore it is an elating feeling. Also, many new talents find their shine through IPL so its a win-win I guess.

So what is #EkNayiLeague???

After each video Kapil says that you can not play this league with your heart. All twitter is abuzz trying to decrypt what this league could be. I think this league is probably a Quiz show about sport persons. They would probably invite general public and ask them question about Indian sport persons.

Or this could probably be a show where sport persons come and are quizzed on general topics like science, politics or general awareness.Or they are put in a ring and forced to face dangers like Khatron ke Khiladi style!

Well we can only guess. Mr. Kapil Dev says he will announce on twitter what this league is all about. I for one am eager to find out. This looks interesting so far and I hope it lives up to the hype.

This post is in support of #EkNayiLeague. 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Zenfone 2: I want it !

Asus has recently revealed the Zenfone 2 and I think it is a masterpiece. They call it "A Marvel of Craftsmanship and Engineering, in the Palm of Your Hand" and I could not agree more. So, let's discuss what makes this phone so amazing.

1) The design: Breathtaking. Amazingly crafted and smart looking, this phone is truly a sight for sore eyes. The machined sharp edges along with 3.9mm thickness really are class apart features. Moreover, the concentric circle design on the front creates a halo kind of effect which is all new and fun.

Not only is the front, the back cover also artfully crafted. ZenFone 2’s back cover is crafted with an exceptional metallic hairline finish which creates an amazing visual effect.

Moreover, it is available in five striking colours- Osmium Black, Sheer Gold, Glacier Gray, Glamour Red and Ceramic White — to reflect your personality and mood along with an ASUS ZenUI theme to match.
Hence, the design is sharp, smart and ergonomic which makes it an apt choice for any use. It encompasses a physical rear key at the back which makes taking selfies, adjusting the volume and retracing one’s steps feel extremely natural and easy.

2) The Processor: ZenFone 2 is powered by an up to 2.3GHz 64-bit Intel® Atom™ Z3580 processor and has 4GB RAM. This means that everything happens at lightning fast speed. Now, one can play games, play videos, surf the web and much more without lags and hag ups. Now that is what I call excellent performance!

3)The Camera: The Zenfone 2 packs a 13MP rear-facing camera which takes astounding images, and a 5MP front-facing camera with 85-degree wide-angle lens for razor sharp selfies and crystal clear video chats.
Also, Pixel Master’s Low Light mode captures clear photos or videos throughout the night. Through a combination of adjusting pixel size and advanced image-processing algorithms, ZenFone 2 increases light sensitivity by up to 400%, enhances noise reduction and boosts colour contrast by up to 400%.

ZenFone 2 also has a Super Resolution mode which uses special image-processing techniques to create incredibly-detailed photos. With Super Resolution mode enabled, ZenFone 2 captures and combines four 13MP photos to create a single image with exceptional 4X clarity. Light or dark, you’ll enjoy more detail and less noise — and resolution equivalent to 52MP!

4) Fast Charging: I, for one, am usually running out of battery during the day. My phone spends most of its time attached to a power bank or a charger but the Zenfone 2 comes with a BoostMaster technology which is the ASUS-exclusive technology that charges devices much faster than traditional speeds. With ZenFone 2, this means your battery is charged up to 60% in no more than 39 minutes. That is saying something!

5) The ZenUI: It is snappy, fast and so fun. Bursting with colours, the ZenUI promises a great user experience with features such as ZenMotion, SnapView, Trend Micro™ Security. Also it comes with trendy themes for every mood and allows the user to customize it according to one’s use.

Hence, I think that in the market of old gaudy phones, ZenFone 2 is a breath of fresh air and definitely on the top of my list. I recommend this to anyone who needs life, speed and fun with awesome multi-tasking capacities out of their phone.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

The Joy in Simplicity

Coca Cola is celebrating the International Day of Happiness.To Coca-Cola, happiness is anything that brings a smile to your face! It's about adding a dose of refreshment, brightness & cheer to the lives of people who love it. Moreover, they asked us bloggers to write about things that make us happy everyday.

Happiness is not only in big purchases, cool gadgets and latest fashion; Happiness also and mostly comes from the small things in life. These small things are often ignored and under-appreciated, but without them our lives are incomplete. Here are a few things that I cherish the most and are a source of joy in my life. 

I start my day with running. I run for about an hour and when I return my mother usually keeps a glass of water already on the table. After pushing oneself for an hour, there is no greater joy than that glass of cold icy water. I can feel it go down my throat to my stomach. I feel the chill and the satisfaction that I get is unparalleled.

Being the voracious reader that I am, books are a great part of my life. Whether it is the metro, or at two in the night one can always find me with a book. The best part about reading a book is when you hold it in your hands for the first time, you can smell the aroma of never-been-touched-before pages and you can feel the stiff crease-less spine. That is something one never gets from eBooks. These days, due to being on a budget, I am mostly dependent on eBooks but whenever I can I buy a real book. I love the feeling of opening it for the first time. I am inseparable from it till I finish reading it. I carry it with me all the time everywhere.

Friends are often a source of pure joy. Hanging out with them is a happy time of my day. We don't go to fancy malls or other such cool and expensive places. We hang out at our college. We can be spotted as the group which laughs at anything and everything. One of my friends is the group's clown. He can turn any situation into a laughter-fest. So whenever anyone is upset or a little down, he is called upon.

Getting a seat in Delhi metro during peak time can prove to be more challenging than clearing the toughest of entrance exams. So whenever I get this lucky to be bestowed with a seat, I make it a point to thank the stars. And not only me, anyone for that matter cannot help but smile whenever this rare phenomenon is experienced.

My mother's cooking. My mother is the best cook. She can cook a wide range of food from Chinese to Italian, but what I like the best is the Rajma chawal she makes. I like Rajma with a lot of gravy and she makes it just like I love. So when I return from college, and the aroma of the Rajma hits my nose from two stories down, a sort of rush goes through my body. I feel better just by the smell. It is my favorite food and I can eat it any time of any day.

Hence, above are the things that bring great joy to me. They are simple and most are inexpensive yet priceless. I am grateful for I get to experience them.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Look Up, Rise Up started the initiative LOOK UP STORIES. IN this we had to tell about stories which make us look up in life. I was reminded of the following story.

One day I was in a sombre state pondering over the "what ifs".
What if I had studied that one lesson for my entrance exams?
 What if my rank would have been better?
What if I had admission in a better college?
What if I had joined a better coaching?
What if .....

It was the first semester of my college and I was really sad. I wanted a better college but my score was low, hence had to settle with a not-so-great college. Seeing my sad expressions, one of my classmates asked me why was I like that. I told him my sad little story. He listened patiently. Then he told me about one of our classmates. His name was Arun. Arun lived in a small town in Jharkhand. His father was not rich but still he took a loan for Arun's studies. Arun was sent to Ranchi to prepare for entrance examinations as well as to complete his 12th. He stayed in a small room which he shared with three other boys. He studied on scholarship in a coaching center where teachers provided him with books. So went two years of hard work and studies. When results came, He secured 91% in 12th. And got a rank of 1095 in the entrance exam. As every student knows one has to register for counseling to get admission in a college. But as fate would have it Arun's grandmother passed away. Arun went to his native village to attend his grandmother's funeral. That village was a very small village with limited access to electricity and internet. At that time there were no dongles or such technology. Even if they were available, they hadn't reached that part of the country. Registration time came and went and Arun couldn't register. All of his hard work was now down the drain. All he could do now was just to wait for the spot round. In the spot round one has to register oneself again for the process. Arun did that and got a seat in our third tier college.

So here was a boy who did all the hard work, got a rank which would have gotten him any stream in any college, but due to sheer bad luck ended up in my college. Yet he was smiling, talking with everyone and encouraging others who were sitting like me. His story shook me and pulled me out of my melancholy state. I gained a whole different perspective on life. I realized that here is a boy who got everything yet nothing and he is still happy and jolly everyday and here I am who does nothing but whine about the unfairness of life. Life had been cruel to him and he still is able to live with it then why can't I.

I will remember this story forever. This is one story which always help me to look up and rise up from my failures. It keeps me motivated to let the past be the past.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

I Will Change

For teenagers, their social status is mostly gauged on factors such as clothes they wear, the phone they carry, and their social media presence. Social media in India began with yahoo messenger and orkut. But soon Facebook took over and now that space is shared by twitter, instagram, snapchat etc.

When I was in 9th, Facebook was reaching its peak. All the kids had Facebook accounts but it was before the time when your parents, uncles and aunts also hopped on and started sending you candy crush requests. There was no candy crush. Farmville ruled the rooste. You planned your online activity around the maturing of your grapes, wheat and corn. There as no side bar and no timeline. The chat sucked big time.

After 10th, during the vacations I got really addicted to Facebook. I spent hours just on farmville. My farm was really thriving. I was so hooked that I didn't even realize my unit tests started the next day. Needless to say, I scored bad, like really bad. My parents were furious and so were my teachers. But I didn't budge. I also started chatting with people I never talked to otherwise in school. Time passed and soon January began. My academic performance was bad and my company I  was worse. My parents were very worried but I was least bothered.

One fine day I met my old teacher. He was my idol and I looked up to him. He saw me hanging out with this creature whom I despised earlier but became friends through Facebook. He didn't say anything. He eyed him top to bottom and then looked at me. He asked my grades and the look in his eyes changed from disappointment to sad. That look shook me to my core. I couldn't sleep. The entire year played in my mind and I realized how low I had fallen. The next morning I went to my parents and apologized. They forgave me and I'll always be grateful to them. Then I deleted my accounts from Facebook and orkut permanently. My so called new friends laughed at first and then started ignoring me. I will be grateful to them as well. I sought my old friends. They took some time but they forgave me as well.

So I put my life together. I faced a lot of rebuke from the "cool kids" but I realized it didn't matter. I consider myself fortunate that I took that step at the right time than making it a life spoiling regret. I am also in lifelong debt of my teacher whose one look made me look in the mirror.
This is for initiative Start a new Life.