snow

November 28, 2010

 

It is next to impossible for two snowflakes to be exactly alike … one more thing that makes me feel ‘awesome’ about this amazing universe and its wonderful creator 🙂 … grateful for everything!

we are all connected!

October 15, 2010

“We are all connected!” We have heard this many times – and have even experienced it sometimes – but we often forget the fact. Also, it is not very apparent at times – but certain situations make the ‘connection’ more ‘visible’.

While driving on the road busy with ThanksGiving traffic, it occurred to me – how important it is that noone’s car breaks down – otherwise I too will be impacted and delayed – since I was part of the whole (like everyone else) that was out there on the road – I am part of the वसुधैव कुटुम्बकम् (Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam) – ONE universal family!

So, go ahead and pray for everyone’s well being – it is in your best interest! 🙂

ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः सर्वे सन्तु निरामयः। सर्वे भद्रणिपश्यन्तु मा कश्चिद्दुःख भाग भवेत्॥

“Sarve Bhavantu Sukhina, Sarve Santu Niramaya, Sarve Bhadrani Pashyantu, Maa Kaschit Dukha Bhagh Bhavet”

May all be happy; May all be without disease; May all have well-being; May none have misery of any sort.

based on a true story – Follow your Heart, NOW!

September 28, 2010

 

(Don’t wait for someone to aim a gun point-blank at you!)

 Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

– Henry David Thoreau

 Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.

– Henry David Thoreau

Marcos Sampayo, born in a middle class family in (capital of) Brazil, was a boy with so many dreams and fascinations … Among many other things, one thing that he liked, as many children do, was to fly! But his story is different … he sees the birds flying in the sky and he wants to be up there with them. He hears the roaring noise of an airplane hovering in the sky and he rushes out (even straight from the bath-tub, at times) to the balcony just to have a glimpse of it … The years go by but his passion about flying does not die … He invariably stretches his gaze at the blue sky whenever he hears the familiar sound …

As he grows up, the only thing that ‘flies’ is time! … He has to park his dream ‘in some corner of his heart’ and move on … He is probably waiting for ‘someday’ when he will follow his dream. He still subscribes to aero-sport magazines but that is the only thing he does for his ‘love’.

He completes his regular education and joins his family owned grocery shop. He is making decent earning and even starts growing his dad’s business. As his father nears the retirement phase, he takes complete charge of the business and is engrossed completely in the routine.

One day, his life takes a sudden turn. It was a normal day, like any other so far … Customers were pouring in the store at regular pace in the morning … then the rush dropped as the sun rose above the head … he heard a big roar of an airplane and since there were not many people in the store who needed attention, he could step out and gaze at the airplane … As the aircraft gets lost in the distant clouds, he returns back to the counter with a ‘sigh’ and starts attending to the few new shoppers. Suddenly, there is a stranger who enters the shop and changes everything. He takes out a pistol from nowhere, fires a shot in the air and frightens everyone outside the shop before he rushes right to the counter. He then aims the pistol at the shop-owner (Marcos) and threatens to kill him if he does not give him all the cash. Marcos who is frightened like never before takes no time to empty the cash drawer into the armed robber’s bag and begs to leave him alive. The seasoned robber then thinks of further frightening the shop-owner and says ‘I still want to kill you! So, lie down on the floor’. Not left with any other choice, Marcos does as instructed … but to his surprise, he finds out that when the robber pulls the trigger, he is not hurt at all – since the there was no more bullet in the gun! The robber runs out of the store laughing at the plight of Marcos – who is still trying to grasp his breath.

The event has ruined Marcos – he was frightened to death during the few minutes that keeps flashing in front of his eyes – even after he was released unhurt physically. He spends the next week in isolation. The introspection results into a reinvented Marcos who decides to make the most from this ‘gift of life’. He does not bother at all about the financial loss he incurred … instead, he takes the ‘boldest’ decision of his life! He sells off his shop and joins a flying club and studies hard to become a certified ‘Hang-Glider’ Pilot. He then sets up his own adventure tourism boutique firm (vôo duplo de asa delta) in Rio De Janeiro and not only lives his ‘passion’ but makes decent living out of it (‘more than what he would be making from his boring shop’ – as he likes to mention it)!

While taking the tourists from across the globe up in the clouds, he shares his story of life – and invariably poses a thought provoking question to everyone (followed by simple piece of advice) – “Will it take some insane to aim a pistol point blank at you?? Please DO NOT wait for a single day. You may not be as lucky as I was – FOLLOW YOUR HEART, NOW!”

So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains

And we never even know we have the key.

– Lyrics from Already Gone, performed by the Eagles for their 1974 On the Border album

Celestial love story?!

August 3, 2010

 

This is NOT the clichéd plot of any Bollywood movie … It is something that has happened in our wonderful (mysterious) universe (or at least the scientists theorize so).

I recently read this interesting celestial love story about a 3-star system – where the ‘duo’ somehow gets rid of the ‘villain’ in the ‘black hole’ and then together run away from the universe to ‘happily live for ever’ 🙂

Chalo dil-dar chalo, chand ke par chalo … hum hai taiyar chalo o o !!      is the song that comes to my mind … what about you? 🙂

not every plant is a bean!

July 23, 2010

This is a lesson I learnt the hard way …

 

I was grateful to get a tender plant/sapling of tulsi (Ocimum tenuiflorum or Holy Basil) … I started to ‘take care’ of it along with the ‘bean plant’ our son had brought from his school (part of ‘spring curriculum’?)

Unfortunately, I realized after a couple of days – that Tulsi requires more watering than the bean plant which needed to be watered about once a week. As soon as I noticed the impact of ‘less care’ on the Tulsi, I started to take corrective measures – but I am sill waiting, with hope, to witness a ‘turnaround’ in its growth.

The incident also made me think that many times I might be treating people with ‘less care’ probably because I am like a ‘bean plant’ that does not need much caring. However, every plant is not a bean! – and I should be mindful of the different needs of other species. 🙂

The famous quote by Jesus Christ – ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you‘ – should not be taken just literally – one has to follow it in spirit as well.

grateful for G2 :)

June 11, 2010

 

 

 

the day started with so many unpleasant events …

i cut my upper lip while shaving (to the extent it kept bleeding till afternoon)

on my way to the GO train station, the head-light of my bike fell off (and i did not have time to stop and collect it)

i was so scarce on time that i could not even lock my bike (had to rush in the train before the doors closed)

all these could certainly make one nervous (if he/she believes in omen & more so if he/she is going to make 3rd attempt at driving road test on the day)

i however, by grace of GOD, could keep cool and ignore everything that can upset …

further, we had to park our car (before the test began) on spot # 13 … and the officials mentioned they are delayed (so it would mean more waiting) …

finally, the test started and i made a (minor) mistake on the first instruction from the examiner (he was not very happy) – but i said to myself ‘no need to worry, everything is going to work out just fine’ …

after 10-15 minutes of further driving, we came to the final stop and he still was explaining the ideal way of executing his first instruction.

When he stopped, i asked ‘what is the result of the test? did i make it?’ and he said ‘YES, you passed!’ …

alllll izzzzz welllll (that endzzz welll) 🙂

and by the way, the (unlocked) bike too was intact in the parking stand (when i returned back) and i happily passed on further gratitude to the Almighty!

PS: Toronto might be in news for G20 & G8 and all that … but G2 is no way related 🙂 .. (as shown in picture above), it is just the Graduate Licence in Ontario province (with which one can drive independently)

a ‘marathon’ with more fun than run

May 15, 2010

I had registered for the Mississauga Marathon and it was supposed to be my first ever 42.2 km RUN … but then Boston happened and I had time of my life on 19 April … 🙂

After that, I had not run (except for reaching GO Train station in time) and so I decided to ‘tone down’ my participation in just the quarter-marathon (or rather 10KM) category of the event … which meant there was only one-fourth running to be done from my side — but we gathered a team and volunteered (to supply water/gatorade) at a beautiful location and contributed (in our own little ways) to the marathoners in their accomplishment – and thereby quadrupled the FUN! 🙂

someday, i am thinking – should i pick up any new hobby(ies)? – do let me know if you have some good ideas to consider [this does not mean i will give up running – if Boston comes calling, who can say no 🙂 ]

if hope were dupes, fears maybe liars

May 3, 2010

if hopes were dupes, fears maybe liars

Recently, I came to see the above verse ( from Say not the Struggle Naught availeth by Arthur Hugh Clough) with a different perspective.

One day in hurry, I locked my bicycle at train station’s bike parking – using the chain with numbered lock – in such a way that it would be easy for anyone to take it away (leaving the lock behind; tied to the pole/stand like a ‘necklace’). I realized (or feared) this only after boarding the train – and could do nothing but to wait till I come back in the evening …

When I returned, as I had hoped – the bike was still there. I am sure no one had thought of ‘stealing’ it – but if at all some passerby had ‘rolled’ his/her eyes on the parking lot with an intention to find some ‘unlocked’ bike for ‘lifting’, he/she might have considered mine as ‘securely’ locked and not fitting his/her category of ‘easy steal’.

And then it occurred to me that many times our ‘fears’ are like ‘improperly used ineffective locks’ … they do not ‘exist’ at all for one who tries. So, fear not and go for your dreams 🙂

[I am certainly not ‘encouraging’ anyone to ‘look harder’ for such bikes ;)]

PS: It seems I remember many more poems (or atleast lines) from my school days than I thought …

it is more than just 26.2 miles

April 19, 2010

Finally, I conquered the legendary ‘heartbreak hill’ at Boston Marathon!

The day arrived and I was in Boston on 17th April …  you can feel the enthusiasm in the air … the hotel was buzzing with Boston Marathon contestants from all over the globe.

When I heard several participants are stuck in Europe (because of the ‘global gridlock’ caused as a result of the recent volcanic eruption in Iceland), I realized how important is the grace of the almighty from all aspects.

Seeing the video of the whole course of the marathon (at the expo on 18th April) did bring up some fears in small little corner of my heart – will I be able to make it? (after it was my first ever marathon run – and i did not get chance to prepare as much as i would have loved to) … the visualization of the FINISH line (through the video) did bring some tears as well.

Woke up the next morning and the weather was just right for the run … I was feeling I was in the best possible shape for this … Walked about a mile to reach the point of pickup from where the school buses ‘transported’ about 25k+ participants to the START line … Many were finding the weather little chilly … Had to wait for some considerable time (out in the open & early in the morning) before we could get on the buses (but imagine the organization that goes behind the mammoth task) … Enjoyed the bus ride (of about 30-40 minutes) and relaxed as much as possible

On reaching the starting point (athlete’s village), I had enough time to freshen up, get in the running attire and store the things in the baggage area before the Wave 2 (in which I was supposed to start) officially begin to RUN at 10:30 am.

While waiting, borrowed a marker from someone at the last minute and wrote my name on my t-shirt and INDIA on my right shoulder — this really turned out to be a wonderful thing to do. This thing got thousands of spectators to cheer me saying ‘Go HARSH Go’ or ‘Go INDIA Go’ all throughout the course … I was really ‘touched’ (Even literally, oh so many people touched me and i touched so many people on the whole route)

How can I not mention the ‘scream tunnel’ formed by the Wellesley college girls with ‘Kiss me’ placards in their hands – did I kiss anyone? Yes and No – with FINISH line (and my wife) in my mind – I settled with flying kisses … (and later looking at the ‘timing’ that I achieved, I was glad I did not ‘indulge’ – otherwise I might have missed my personal deadline of 6 hours)

27539 Thakkar, Harsh H.   M     CANADA INDIA  
Checkpoints 5k 10k 15k 20k Half 25k 30k 35k 40k
0:27:32 0:56:54 1:28:59 2:12:06 2:20:48 2:58:41 3:57:02 4:46:31 5:35:53
Finish Pace Projected Time Official Time Overall Gender Division
0:13:32   5:54:22 22434 13022 4636

Boston people were really amazing – I was exhausted at couple of places and I do feel i might not have reached the FINISH line without there never ending support. Thank YOU – Boston, Everyone & ALMIGHTY 🙂

[If you are interested, keep watching – I plan to share more here]

is happiness your default choice?

March 17, 2010

I found this ‘story’ very inspiring …

View this document on Scribd

so, now onwards, will you make happiness your default choice?