Shopping and eating

T.M. Lewin shirts

Little above a year back, a young man of 20 something, having finished a year at his new job, received the good news of his secondment to London. In preparation for his six weeks in London, the young man set out to a few shops in the city to buy the necessary attire for the new job profile that he would be in.

On 3 May 2010, this young man took his first long haul flight from Bangalore to London. As he walked out of the airplane and took the cab to his apartment, he fell in love with the city and hoped that those six weeks would be a lot more. Little did he know that his wish would come true. However, his work was recognised and he was given an offer he could not refuse. And, he didn’t.

The six weeks turned to six months and the six months turned to nine, as he waited for his visa. After a brief visit in Bangalore, he packed up his belongings and returned home to Mumbai. In Mumbai, as he struggled to adjust to the time zone difference, he tried to put his affairs in order and met a few friends. He was back to London in early March to begin his new job in a role where his friends would refer to him as “Banker”.

I don’t need to tell you that the young man is me and am happy to say that I have completed my first year in London, in a job I grew to love!

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. This isn’t the case with Ajay (yes, sad joke!), who is perfectly at home at his work place. But, I do go out and have my share of fun and this included a wardrobe improvement with the help of his new found friend Sveccha (introduced by the great Idea-smithy.

We went to Westfield mall, which is one of the largest malls in Europe (view on Google Maps). I picked up a few shirts at the T.M.Lewin store and at Marks & Spencer, a pair of shoes and something that makes me smell real good!

T.M. Lewin shirts

Some Vietnamese food, pastries and Starbucks completed the rest of the day. This was the first day of the long two weekends, the Easter weekend and the Royal Wedding weekend, most of which were spent in the confines of my super sexy apartment!

The living room

The kitchen

The bedroom

View from my bedroom window

What use is a good, well furnished kitchen (courtesy Tesco Direct), when you don’t put it to use. Met up with Sveccha on Saturday and we decided to cook at home. She did the cooking and we did the eating. The prawns turned out to be super awesome and the rice and the dal were yum! Need, I say, I need to take up cooking as a hobby!

And, work continues as usual…

The Indian feel in London

Met up with Clayton, my good old friend from my days of choir singing. He decided to take me to Chennai Dosa, which is a popular Indian cuisine restaurant in Wembley and other places in London.

Travelling to Wembley on a weekend from Canary Wharf is always a pain because the Jubilee line has “planned engineering works”. So, instead of taking the Jubilee straight to Wembley, I took the Jubilee to Stratford (opposite direction), which will soon be the place of the London Olympics.

From Stratford, I took the Overground to Gospel Oak where Clayton came with his car. Going by road today turned out to be rather painful since we came across three accidents yesterday. The first one made us take an alternate route which was several kilometres all over the area. The second one didn’t restrict our travel.

Chennai Dosa turned out to be a pleasant surprise. The rates are much lower by London standards, but I couldn’t help running a quick 70x conversion to INR! The place was filled with Indians and is apparently run by Indians.

The mutton biryani wasn’t too good, but the other prawns and chicken lollipop was yummy :)

Clayton decided to drop me back to Canary Wharf, but for the third accident near London Bridge and I chose to get off at Waterloo and take the Jubilee back home.

Tomorrow is a new day and we’re still debating if we should go watch a movie or not.

Visiting Indiranagar

It was a really short visit about two weeks back, when I went to meet Akshat and Neha at the Cafe Coffee Day in Indiranagar.

Those who know me do not find it hard to imagine that I haven’t seen Bangalore even though I have been here for nearly 11 months.

I also realized that Indiranagar is not as far as I thought it to be! It’s about 7-8km from where I stay. But, it doesn’t take too long because of the wide open roads leading to the place. It has been a while since I cruised along so sweetly.

I’m still waiting to go out to Barista sometime soon. One day, when I am not that lazy!

Met up with Suchita today and we went to Fiorama, which is an Italian restaurant in Koramangala itself. The place turned out to have a good ambience, but unfortunately it was way to expensive for the portions and quality of food they had to offer. Reminds me of a non-veg Little Italy!

I also have clarity on the PayPal issue I cribbed about last time. Seems like the Reserve Bank of India woke up suddenly and asked PayPal to stop all operations in India until they “register” with RBI. This means that for at least another few months, Indian users will have a to suffer. Those who are freelancing and rely on PayPal as their main source of payment receipts are in for a major issue. I believe goods and services may still work, but that is left to be determined.

I don’t really blame PayPal on this, except for the total lack of communication before they took action, which is not acceptable for an organization like PayPal. Read PayPal’s update on the situation.

Last Weeks at SCMHRD and Mumbai

Nammy in the wheel chair

I returned to college in mid March for the last two weeks at SCMHRD; two weeks filled with exams and vivas. Began first shot of the exams with the viva for our Finance Paper on 21st March. It was short, to the point and sweet with average marks. We also collected out hall tickets on that day.

Two days prior to that Sneha got placed. It was also the same day that Namrata manage to break a leg (and I’m not talking show business) while shopping. She sure got fussed over for two weeks.

Nammy in the wheel chair

My first written paper was for World Class Management on 26th of March and the paper turned out to be a real bouncer for the entire batch. We still await results, which are due in June / July.

On 26th we all set out for Sneha?s treat at Sigri in Dhole Patil Road, Pune. I had been to Sigri last year for one of the many admissions treats and liked the place. This time we went with the Barbeque buffet and it was simply fabulous. I stuffed myself up with fish, prawns and chicken and washed it all down with three triple scoops of strawberry ice cream.

And, the next day, I went out with the Admissions Team, viz. Anoop, Maria, Radhika and Ravi. Rashmi also joined for dinner. We went over to Rajwada, which I had visited once. The service at that place is painfully slow, but the food is decently edible.

Rashmi, Ravi, Anoop, Maria and Radhika The Admissions Team

We intended to stop off for ice cream and stuff but rushed to catch the last bus back to college.

The remaining days at SCMHRD were two more papers and a viva, lots of clearance forms and final packing as I headed back home to Mumbai.

The last week in Mumbai was actually just a few days as I got my belongings ready for transportation to Bangalore.

The transporters picked up all my stuff on Saturday and I dropped my bike over on Sunday before I flew down to Bangalore. The driver who received me at the airport was a very chatty guy and pointed out quite a few places as we passed them during the 90 minute drive to the guesthouse.

Today was the first day at work and was an excellent day. I like the place here. This week, I plan on searching for a good 1BHK in Bangalore.

BTW, in all likelihood, this may possibly be my second last post to be filed under College. The last possibly be the results, if I have the time!

Pink Panther and other stories

After a brief stint in Pune to complete some college activities, I came back to Mumbai last Sunday.

I spent a good portion of last week working on my plugins. I released updated to Contextual Related Posts and Top 10. I also released a new WordPress Plugin called Add to Footer.

Lastly, I’ve taken over development of the highly popular WP Ajax Edit Comments from Ronald.

The last week wasn’t all coding. I managed to catch Pink Panther 2 and also made two visits to Dynasty, our favorite eating joint. Also dropped in to my Grandmom‘s place on Tuesday. Our original plan was to order from Subway. However, the outlet in Bandra wasn’t running the offer that is being run at the outlet here in Andheri.

So, we dropped the plan of Subway and instead ordered chicken tikka and chicken sheekh kebabs from the local joint opposite National College.

Spent all of yesterday at home on account of Holi and coding a brand new version of Top 10. You should see the release post in a few hours. Remember to deactivate the plugin before upgrading.

Also worked on my report for Research and Reporting. Have a submission in a few days. We’ve just be lazy at finishing this. Who said, we don’t believe in JIT ;) ?

Dad and me plan to visit an Amway meet in the evening. I came to know yesterday that I have 100 persons in my network. Can’t take any credit for it. I do plan on buying more of Amway’s products, simply because they are excellent. I’ll probably make a post about this in the future.