Paris – Brest – Fougeres

Even after one month, there is numbness on my left hand. I am still visualizing all days and nights spent on saddle. I am still finding the route in my dreams from Fougeres to Ramboillet but not yet found till last night. I felt that something is still missing and that feelings provoked me to write this blog. The blog is all about my recent expedition at France.

We have to be ready to live with our choices what we make and I choose the toughest cycling ride of 1,220 Km that had to complete in 90 hours. I was prepared for the event at fullest by mental and physical fitness after five years of cycling and two years of randounnering experience. I earned ” Super Randonneur” title three times as a part of my intense training and qualified for an event participation. I worked hard on my nutrition, overall weight, endurance over varying distances, terrains and climatic conditions in India.

Not all battles are fight for the victory but some fought to stimulate the mind and self realization. I did not have any confined strategy. I just thought to reach at the finish line within the time. It was bit of risk but i went with my intuitions, that works sometimes and sometimes not. It was an attempt to be more truthful as much as possible, at least with myself.

17th Aug 2019 – I arrived at Rambouillet early in the morning for bike check and queued to receive my goody-bag. Weather was not so looking good in contrast to the previous day. It was raining raining constantly and that made me little nervous since rain socked me fully. Post bike check, I was happy to meet Eric, whose videos inspired me while training and event preparation.

Thousands of cyclists had gathered around the world to witness and experience the Paris Brest-Paris event with 7000 + riders from 70 + countries. Second highest participation from India was noted with 300 + riders. Around 55 riders from Gujarat inclusive of 12 riders from Ahmedabad.

18th August 2019 was the day, when i queued at the start line at 1700 for my first international event. I was getting multiple thoughts in mind leading to excitement, confusion and anxiety equally. I kept on identifying my positive thoughts and pampered it until i get occupied on saddle. I listened all my intuition and acted accordingly just few hours before the start time. With conscious mind, I replaced tube and tyre of rear wheel just three hours before the start time and it really reduced psychological pressure.

I was expecting a presentation ceremony, some music, some instructions (of-course in English) before flag off of an epic event. But, event started as scheduled as like as other BRM held in India. Time had arrived to seek something or someplace where i never been to and journey began at 1730.

It was all about gaining spontaneous experience instead of fixing something in mind because many times planning dose not work. I was damn sure that every few hours terrain is going to change and weather will be highly unpredictable. It was complex kind of range of experience. There was something enjoyable and sometimes something frustrating. Frustration began just after 20 Km ride and that was never thought of.

I never felt so fragile in describing the situation before since, it reminds me the uncertainty of life. This was about mechanical breakdown of bike as gear wire got skipped off. This happened in outskirts of city where we hardly notice people roaming around or any cycling workshop. I tried to fix the problem but i could not do it. I did not have any other option but to look at riders passing besides me. I struggled lot in fixing the problem but it remain as it was almost 30 minutes. My brain had became scrambled and my body dripped down slowly with passing time being on the same spot.

I was waiting for miracle to happen since, I always believed in destiny and faith so strongly. And miracle really happened when a gentleman came to me and started fixing the gear wire using my tools. He confidently told me that problem is fixed and i can ride now. Today, my faith in destiny is much more stronger with belief that ”Cycle mechanic also can be an Angel.”

Ride continued thereafter with extra efforts to recover the time lost. I decided not to sleep but riding throughout the night with a quick pace. I reached at the first official stop Mortagne at 118km. That was not a control point but just for food.

Food plays an important role for endurance rides as body continuesly required to be replenished by nutrition and hydration. I was so touched to receive Shaily’s (Nutritionist) call before an event day to get an update on nutrition arrangement. I was following almost all inputs given by her but many things went out of control. I was happy to hear from some sources that organizers arranged special counters for Asian vegetarian food at all control points. I do not eat eggs, meat, chicken or fish being a vegetarian. But, I was disappointed largely at first control point itself since I hardly found vegetarian food. I had to manage with banana, vegetable soup and pasta (only on two control points) throughout the event. I could store around 10 – 12 banana in my jacket having ample storage space.

It was almost solo ride till Fougeres and observed surrounding rather than to be observed. I was busy in discovering people from different counties having different cultures and languages on roads. France roads has left-hand drive unlike India. Pre-PBP riding practice helped in getting acquainted with wrong side riding to prevent an accident during ride. Even though, many times i made mistake in wrong side riding. France roads are really wonderful having vista covered by multi-colored landscape with undulated terrain that pleased to my eyes. I had to climb approximate 11000 meter cumulative elevation through out the route without obstructing potholes or speed breakers.

The first control point was Villaines-la-Juhell at 217km, where I got my card stamped at 0645. I knew that I am already late, so I didn’t stay too long at control point. Mindful of this, I had bought some coca-cola and bananas, enjoyed a quick black coffee and started further for Fougeres. I arrived at the Fougeres control (306km) at 1311 completing 25% of the ride. The next stage to Tinteniac was shorter, just 54km, where I arrived at 1800. I had a proper lunch of boiled pasta and vegetable soup there. I decided to take power nap for an hour since eyes demanded rest.

August days are summer season in France, however climate keep changing from Cold to Hot and Hot to Rain and Rain to Cold. Temperature goes below 5 degree in night hours so often. I could manage lowest temperature by using surgical glows for palm/ feets. Still, many times it was too difficult to operate breaks/ gears. I never experienced such frequent changing climate in India. I also experienced sudden rain while riding towards Loudeac. There was constant rain almost for 20 km but I preferred to ride since I was well protected by good rain jacket.

Days were found too long where sun gets set at 2200. Sun was setting down when I was in an area of forest, where roads had become hilly having long gradual climbs and equally long descents. Beautiful road suddenly got transformed into spooky and haunting roads. Night skies were somber and starless. Sometimes I was so much conscious with increasing speed while descents thinking of unexpected speed breakers or potholes like India but roads were really smoothly paved. I arrived at Loudeac (445km) at midnight.

Gujarat team  had arrangement of dedicated support vehicle to manage Indian food and drop bag facility. I eat Indian rise/ dal/ roli and felt like an extraordinary personality having an deep satisfaction. I put on fresh clean clothes after taking shower.  I rented bed to take some sleep for about two hours and  woke up before the alarm rang. I was almost ready for further ride when i encountered few of known Indian riders who quited the event. I moved on towards bike parking without talking to them just to avoid distracted from my goal. In-between, I skipped to replenish my food bag of dry fruit and energy bars in hurry.  

Another 83km got me to Saint-Nicolas, an unexpected  control point where I was told to get my card stamped as surprise check. There was chill in air with dense fog with very less visibility on the road and could not utilize benefit of tail wind. The terrain was still hilly and steady climb one after another through dense forests. I arrived at next control point Carhaix at 521km. I was pretty exhausted by the time I got there at 0850. I looked for spot on the floor to lie down on for some rest. I laid down and put my helmet below my head and realized that this is going to be a waste of time. So i stood up within 15 minutes and moved further for next control point.

Journey began to approach halfway destination called Brest. I knew that big climb would come before Brest and soon there will be a cable-stayed bridge. But, it took a long time to reach at Brest control point after passing through stiff climbs and very very long descent at 1600. I already consumed 46 hours reaching halfway, when i realized strongly that time will become bottleneck now. Even a small amount of sleep will become constraint even-though that may have an amazing effect for re-setting body and mind. Without wasting much time, I bought some banana from control point and left from Brest heading back.

I experienced many things that divided people by culture, language, food and many more things. Contradictory there was also one thing that connect people by humanity. I was so happy to see cultural commonness between France & India. Many shelters, hydration stations and food stations were arranged to welcome and support cyclist passing from the route similar to welcoming people walking to Ambaji or Dakor in India. All along the route people set up tables offering free water, coffee, cake and other goodies and sometimes offered space to rest with blankets. Kids were clapping excitedly and hold out their hands for a high-five throughout the route.

Fatigue started to slow me down after U turn and I somehow found some fresh energy from my food bag (dates, nuts, protein bars). I was still looking for something that keep me going but I knew that I hadn’t had enough of my own provisions that I would have eaten to ride to Carhaix (693km) and then Loudeac (783km). Even than, my body was fully responding to my goals and there was no any back-ache or neck-ache issues. I knew that I had the strength for the last third distance of the ride. The only potential problem of saddle-sore and I used plenty of cream to prevent it. Constant pressure kept me conscious constantly on saddle. I told myself that ‘I can sit on saddle and I can ride it’. So, I could sit and rode it till I arrive to Loudeac at 0930.

Further journey was not joyful since, I was extremely exhausted and tired. I arrived at Tinteniac (869km) and got stamped on request even-though sensors were removed and control point closing ceremony was going on. I realized that i will not be able to finish the ride within 90 hours. I thought to connect with Vivek Shah (Friend & Coach) and get his advise on the situation that i was facing. He suggested me to continue the ride even if it get finished after 90 hours. I got similar advise from Reena Joshi (Friend & Wife) and I decided to continue for next control point after taking some rest. I realized the effect of their words and this reset button had worked well till next control point.

I figured that I will reach to the finish only after 90 hours but still I thought to finish the full route for my own satisfaction. It was fourth night, passing through lots of hills, dense forest and open farms but my legs wanted to go fast so I finish the route in reasonable time. Suddenly, I got astray on the way since i could not see a direction board. I continued riding further on wrong route more than 5 km. I realized that it was now absolutely freezing but I kept on riding alone in dark night with little nervousness and now I was unsure of what to expect when I sensed that I might be on the wrong route. I noticed that GPS is also not working on that route. Finally, I stopped a car passing though and asked them, if they might have seen any riders passing through. But we did not understand each other’s language.

Communication was the biggest barrier during France stay. I understood that most Europe population either dose not understands or speaks English language. Important instructions, signage and other information were published only in French even at public places. Google translator became a primary source of communication at food stalls, cafe and control points that consumed lot of time.

I returned back on the same route and waited at crossroads from where I took turn. I had two choices either to ride to straight road till i observe direction board or to wait for any riders to arrive at cross roads. I took risk and I waited till I saw head-lights reaching towards me almost after 20 minutes. I was happy to see a rider from Jalandhar (India) and I started riding behind him confidently even without checking the direction board. Fortunately, we arrived at Fougeres, (923km) at 0100 and approached control point to get stamped. Later, we heard that riders pulled out direction board from the route to keep with them as souvenir while return journey.

We noticed that control point is not active and gates are locked. Campus lights were switched off and it was not even made available for shelter to rest. It was damn delicate situation since i was in full of fatigue and sleep-deprived state. We started looking for space for shelter with frustrating and demotivating feelings. I walked to nearby resident and borrowed blanket since I missed my emergency blanket in drop bag. I borrowed emergency blanket from one rider passing though, who did not want it so I can be saved from shivering and windy cold.

Yes, that was a quit moment when I laid down on footpath corner and concluded the ride after acknowledging deep breath and hearing the voice from my head that asked me to stop and gave my self a break. Fortunately, Fougeres has a good connectivity to Bus and Metro so we could reach back to start point comfortably.

So that was PBF (Pairs – Brest – Fougeres) for me. It was an interesting journey that started about two years ago and culminated now at 925 Km after 80 hours of continues riding. Biggest learning for me is to increase in mental strength having desire to sleep as less as practical without putting myself at unnecessary risk by riding sleep deprived. I noticed many riders sleeping in strange conditions and postures.

I would say that one cannot simply ride this route whenever one chooses and then claim to have ridden PBP.  It is more than a bike ride, where 7000 riders speaking the common language of cycling for four days/ nights under many unpredictable challenges until we ride the event. I am sharing an experience of PBF is like recalling moments spent on saddle. Few moments were very strong and happy, some were crazy and funny and few moments were literally filled with emotions. Let these moments take place in to history of my lifetime experience on arduous personal challenge by testing the body and the spirit.

My happiness laid down between the start line and the finish line, where i gained mental and physical strength on highest peak. It was just ”I” vs ”ME” in the Paris-Brest- Fougeres. Post PBP, ” I ” lost around 7 Kg weight and ” ME ” became more healthy after getting squeezed from 75 Kg to 68 Kg.

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Super Randonneur

Doing something without any objective or specific goal never excites me. It was very much required to set a goal and seek for an inspiration. I started evaluating my capabilities and limitation to fix up the goal.

I decided over last monsoon to do something specific in 2017 – 2018.  It’s not that I fell in love with Audex events but I found my self more inclined in doing long distance endurance riding. Therefore, I made my perspective on self sufficient long-distance endurance riding to acquire the title ” Super Randonneur’.’ It was not so easy, yet it was not impossible. I created a vision panel on my wardrobe to pursue all BRM dates and got mentally prepared for upcoming events.

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Vision Panel

I finished BRM 200/ BRM 300/ BRM 400 within the stipulated duration, but I was disqualified for BRM 600 and sank into a demotivated mode. I left all cycling group (on WhatsApp) and decided to stay away from cycling for some weeks. I listed up my mistakes made during BRM 600 and analysed them. Interestingly, my wife got even more discouraged than me as if she lost SR title.

We (Reena & Me) started looking at the event calendar for upcoming BRM 600. Bhuj cycling club had organized the event immediately after two months. We decided to grab an opportunity to achieve the goal. Riding route was Bhuj – Ahmedabad – Bhuj.  Bhuj has been a special place for both of us. Her upbringing and sweet memories are connected with  Bhuj since her childhood. We even spend one year in Bhuj after getting married. I traveled extensively in Kutchh region during my three years assignment with UNICEF during Gujarat Earthquake Rehabilitation Project. I was excited to ride on the same roads after 15 years and recalling all memories. Each milestone and destination has its own story and memories that kept me busy in pedaling instead   concentrating in leg pain.

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Now this was our combined efforts of-course. We understood that this could be achieved only with some strategic planning. Reena paid my gym subscription without my knowledge at Mission Health Physio Gym to ensure that I build my core strength and muscles. She gifted me Garmin Finix 3 (sport watch) to monitor my workout and other parameters. She planned to get me joined at the start point to encourage me.

I heard so many kind words about Bhuj Cycling Club from Geeta Rao. Now its was my turn to experience such a wonderful cyclist from Bhuj. Reena was there at the start point, where I met all cyclists. My journey began on those roads which are connected to my sweet past. Nicely paved and motor-able road surface helped my mind occupied my mind in those cute memories. Even I did not even realize the distance I had crossed and reached outside Kutchh district. Temperature difference between day and night was extensive. (20 – 40).

This was my first experience of long ride where I rode solo almost for 450 Km (except night hours). The challenge was to finish 600 Km only in 40 hours. Real challenge began after 20 hours of riding at 0200 AM. I met other cyclists on the way and joined them since riding alone in dark hours was not a wise decision. Our eyes got tired and looked for rest and we took power nap at Dhangadhra Food court. We heard somewhere that drinking coffee could be lowering the quality of sleep, so having coffee was the best idea. We requested to the Coffee Cafe Day owner to open the cafe for us and he supported. We enjoyed strong coffee for two hours and again started riding in dark. I never forget to take memory snap of people who help when it is needed.

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Coffee Cafe Day @ Dhangadhra Food Plaza

Fresh ride began at 0600 AM with daylight and boosted energy. Slowly riding was getting difficult with rising in temperature. I had to increase water intake as water became a basic need. I had a bad experience in the past, where road side people tease us and make a fun while we rode. Suddenly, I started feeling the same when one tempo started chasing me. Driver parked tempo at distance and stopped me. Lot of scary thoughts started in my mind but I got relaxed when he told me that he stopped to offer me chilled water. I noticed that he was transporting water jugs. I accepted his water and refilled my bottles as well. Sometimes we become so judgmental of others just by looking at their behavior or conversation.  I clicked selfie with him as memory and started riding further.

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Tempo guy transporting chilled water jugs

I took long time in riding between Bhachau to Bhuj due to rise in temperature extensively. I had to stop every 15 Km to water my self either under a hand pump or a chilled water bottle. I started noticing strong communication between subconscious mind, conscious mind and body in the last 100 Km, where I had to balance out between them.

Finally I reached to Bhuj, where my family was waiting at the the finish point. I had great feeling when I had Reena at the start and finish point to support my passion. I could roam in Bhuj city for few hours without any tiredness even after riding 600 Km and that proved my endurance level. Yeah it was really a strong finish. I was successful in correcting my mistakes made in previous BRM and  this would not have been possible without Reena’s support since the inception stage.

The biggest challenge was sleep management and endure being on the saddle continuesly for forty hours. I finished the event in 36 hours and that was with a sleepless night. That moment made me realize my breaking point. Now its the time to prepare for BRM 1000.

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Squeezed a little ( 86 to 73)

One day, I was tying shoelaces of newly bought shoes sitting on a chair. Suddenly, all energy and joy left me and replaced with confusion, anxiety, and a deep sense of frustration. One question came in to my mind leaving little room for the answer.

What will I do?  ………..How will I do?

I had to lift my feet up since I could not bend to tie shoelaces as my tummy was obstructing the way. And that was the wake up call for me. I realized that I am over weight and tend to be obsess. If not today than that tomorrow will never come in my life.

If something doesn’t feel right, then maybe it’s time for a change. Yeah, It was time to change my lifestyle. It would have been very easy to ignore feelings and push them away but ultimately this was about my own heath and happiness. I was very much honest with myself and acknowledge those unsettled feelings. They were there to guide and support me and I just listen them carefully.

It was strategic move of my life and I decided to make the process and results more convincing for self and family. I started searching reference photographs for visual comparison of physical size. I could find few photographs clicked at my workplace. Employee’s birthday being celebrated preciously at ” Best Place To Work”. I retrieved all images clicked on 5th day of June from 2014 to 2018 to review physical changes as well as life style change. Those visuals helped me reviewing my last five years lifestyle.

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When it comes to reducing weight than immediately term ”Diet food” only come into our mind.  I heard the term ”Dieting” so often during my fitness journey while interacting to people. People had always different perception and judgement about Diet food, whereas I kept on explaining the term as ” healthy meal having all nutrition in balanced proportion in preferred taste” This mind set helped in making the journey enjoyable and memorable.

I initiated structured diet plan supported by thoughtful workout plan with help of expert. Nutritionist Ms Shaily Chauhan assisted me in designing my fortnightly meal chart by balancing carbohydrate and protein in required proportion. She was constantly obtaining my feedback to revise/ revisit meal plan so I eat my preferred food within the available basket. Continues and frequent followups on meal plan implementation really  helped in maintaining my enthusiasm through out the course. I maintained all records of  physical measurements noted during the course.

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First meal plan brought significant changes in body weight and that motivated me to put more efforts. I also received honest feedback from trust worthy people around me.  Ironman Sohil Parikh, Marathoner Jayesh Joshi & Vishal Patel always gave me genuine feedback with visual observation and that created huge confidence within me. Sometimes random feedback also helps. Someone observed that I shifted from last hole to first hole while tying belt. That was a strong visual evidence of reduction in waist size.

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Company always matters, from where we get strong mental support. My mental support was my wife. She played vital role in changing my food habits, way of life and food schedules. It’s especially difficult, if souse doesn’t want to change his/her lifestyle, but luckily, I and Reena made decision to be healthier together, so we supported one another and made each other accountable for our actions. She gifted me Garmin Fenix 3 watch to calculate calories, to monitor heart rates and to record daily workouts. She never forgot to offer me green tea and fruit infused water bottle while going to office. This way, I was successful enough to extend my thoughts to my friends/ family positively. Somehow, I was being noticed by group of people and they requested for tips to begin their healthy meal plans.

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Strategically, I decided to surround by heath freak people, who can connect to the subject and my efforts at a large. Super Randonneur  Satyen Kanabar was also there to hear me unconditionally about my efforts to change. Frequent consultation of Dr Smitesh Dutt helped lot in changing meal plan and understanding changes happening within my body through Lipid profile.

My personal experience concludes that 80 % efforts in healthy food habits and 20 % efforts in physical activities can reduce our weight drastically. It is all about reducing intake of sugar and fat. Extensive workout in Gymnasium may shape up the body and increase muscle mass as well.

There may be 100 reason for not following plan but there can be at least one strong reason to follow the plan to bring changes within self. But I had two strong reasons to pursue the course, those are Health and Happiness. 

 

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BRM 600 – Worst (est) Experience

It was huge disappointment after this BRM since, this was my worst experience of cycling career. First time ever, I had the feeling of regret than that of happiness. I felt that I was being punished for something that I had not done ever. As always, I decided to write a blog, immediately after recovering from my frustration.  This is my learning based on my personal experience, however that may differ from one rider to another rider.

I heard somewhere that best success stories often begin with failure and such failure stories often lead to success. It teaches us lessons and makes us strong to face harder time in future. There could be multiple factors for failure but still it is important to share the experience, so it  can become a success story for others.

I logged off 2017 by attempting BRM 600 from Himmat Nagar to Udaipur to NathDwara to Deogarh. I was so excited about this event since, this was my  ”Super Rendonneur” title ride. I was confident enough to complete the ride successfully as I believed in my self through out the practice sessions. Unfortunately, I could not complete the ride and disqualified half way.  As like me, there were three more riders, who disqualified and missed the SR title. We nine riders attempted the riding and only four riders finished it successfully but with hard feelings.

There is a lot to write about route. Event organizers designed the route recently and implemented it for the first time. The route was tough and hard to complete in stipulated time limit. There was 600 mt continues elevation (200 floors high building) through out 300 Km stretch. Unfortunately there was continues head wind, which resisted gaining desired speed even in slopping terrain. But it could be acceptable as head wind in not any one’s control. Four riders finished the event but with hard feelings rather than feeling the joy of completing the ride.

The route is not recommended for SR series ride at all. Other-way, the route may be practiced for Paris – Brest – Paris event, where rider accept the challenge and get trained. All riders participating in BRM may not appear for PBP. I never bothered to study route and its elevation details before registering BRM 600, that was my biggest mistake.

Lesson 1 – Get enough data about route, control points temperature and elevation while selecting BRM.

Rider’s safety was a huge concern. Personal safety and road safety was seriously ignored while deciding route between Nathdwara to Deogarh. It was two lane road without a divider in between. We experienced heavy vehicle traffic (mostly long trailers) rushing to us during night hours, where over taking of one vehicle to another was so obvious. Our tired eyes were continuously attacked by truck’s head lights but we continued to ride. Experiencing such unsafe conditions between 12 AM to 3 AM with sleepless eyes made us exhausted. I would never ride such BRM in future by compromising personal safety and either recommending to others.

I still doubt that the event organizers did enough recce of the route before its implementation. We understood that the route is never attempted before and there is no such data justifying it as a potential route. I doubt, that there is a system or committee in Cyclone Cycling Club, which  approves routes and safety aspects before the implementation.

Lesson 2 – Always ask for data specifying recce of route before registering BRM. Also get information about anticipated challenges.   

A lot of time was wasted in Udaipur city. Internal roads and all bypass roads were full of slow moving traffic and also it was crowded due to 30 – 31st Dec celebration. It took 45 minutes to cover 5 Km distance within the city.

We could notice unorganized logistics and resource planning by Marshal unlike other BRM. Marshal was equipped with only one small size car for such a long distance ride. There was no control point in the length of 300 km stretch, where we truly missed guidance. I still doubt that the car had First Aid Kit to address emergency hours. We realized the need of support car when four riders decided to quit the ride 30 Km before U Turn. We sensed that we will not be able to reach at U Turn within 20 Hours (cut off time), so we called Marshal to inform our quit for the ride. We expected to be picked up but we had to ride 30 Km more to reach at the at U-Turn.

We still failed to understand  in applying cutoff time as general rule but not specific to terrain. What If the same cutoff time is applied to Climb Gurushikhar and rolling down to Abu road???? The event organizers or Cyclone Cycling Club committee have to revisit such rules. I still fail to understand that ”Why ride was not started from Ahmedabad to skip route between Nathdwara to Devgadh.”

Lesson 3 – Always check with organizer for their resources like Emergency kit, Emergency numbers, Pickup vehicle after quit the ride.  

Reaching at the U Turn after 21 hrs, we checked with Marshal whether we still could ride or we would be considered as the late finish. We were physically  strong and still able to ride. But, we preferred to quit the BRM and took rest after Marshal confirmed that ride would be considered as Late Finish. We requested Marshal for our return journey arrangement and he confirmed that there was bus organized next day morning.

31st of December began with frustration, challenges and surprises, for what we were never prepared mentally. The day started with worst and unhygienic accommodation. We started noticing dirty bed sheets and stinking blankets. There was no water in the toilet and I had to manage all activities without or less water. Wash basins were out of water even in common toilets. Moreover, we were shocked to know that there was no any arrangement for return journey. Hotel representative confirmed that the bus would come only at 04 PM. Our frustration was picking up slowly. We understood well that BRM was non-supported ride and we did not expect any support while we were riding but there had to be a support after we quit the ride. We should not be left unsupported on the way.

Lesson 4 – Ensure your own support and do not rely fully on event organizers for such remote location, specifically after quit.  

With the support of  local people, we managed transportation up to Udaipur. We loaded cycles over the bus roof and tied up all cycles to prevent from damage. There was no empty seats in the bus, so we had to sit on the floor with a cycling attire and a helmet. I never had such pathetic journey in my life.

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Co-riders play a vital role in BRM.  Dishant Shah and Tejas Parekh are superb humans. I do appreciate their support in both days. I thank both of them for their strong support. It is essential to decide and prioritize, whether to support our co-rider or leave them behind and complete the BRM. Humanity is overriding in these options and it is always desired to be with the group for support and specifically in night hours. Moreover, it was our moral responsibility to support each other and ride in group since we had female rider with us.

I should not be left behind but to accept mistakes i had made during ride.

We experienced 23 degree temperature difference in whole day. Major difficulties started in night hours, when we reached at NathDwara. I had put on a warmer, that got wet after continuous cycling. Condensation started happening in my body after I took a tea break at 1030 PM. I started shivering badly due to extreme cold generated in my body.  I should have wore dry fit clothes before wearing warmer to ensure that body did not get wet even after extreme workout.

I failed to follow my diet plan and that made me more exhaustive even before completion of 200 Km. My energy almost consumed in climbing terrain up to Udaipur. I forgot to take supplements during the ride like Salt Tablets, Dry fruits and GU Gel in addition to rice and dal. I also experienced an upset stomach which consumed my 30 minutes.

I went for 175 Km solo ride just one day before BRM event instead of taking enough rest. This ride consumed my energy, that I could have retained for BRM event.

After reaching home, I was more upset looking at Reena’s (my wife) frustration due to this disqualifying ride and it hurt me lot. In fact, she was more excited for this event than me. She organized all my stuff and supported me extensively to earn SR title.  Such frustration forced me to leave all cycling group (WhatsApp) and decided to stay away from cycling for a few weeks till I recover fully. I would never recommend this BRM to any rider, since it may demotivate them rather than inspiring to go for another BRM.

Lesson 5 –  Do not announce your ride or event in advance. It may create lots of expectations from friends and family and build social pressure.

 

 

 

 

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Cycling Expedition

Recently, I went for cycling expedition at Mount Abu on 26th – 27th August 2017. Event was organized by Ahmedabad Bicycling Club (ABC). After returning from expedition, all members started sharing their experience and Kept on reading for few days. Each individual had their own objectives and feelings that were expressed honestly. One of non-rider also wrote the email describing all riders went on Expedition. That email provoked me to share my experience and feelings. Expeditions are always uninspiring and flat until it is shared and celebrated. So I decided to write an email to ABC club sharing my experience. Below is the email !  !

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Hello ABC Champs,

Honestly, I am not good in expressing feelings or writing wonderful email as wrote by UMA & HARSHVARDHAN. But Gaurav Bhai’s email provoked me  to write at least few lines. I can not justify the trip in real sense until I do share and celebrate my Long road ride, Uphills and Downhills. Generally, I do share by photographs lot but Let me write this time. 
 
I was waiting for this trip since long but I was not certain either I should register or not. My Mind and Body had intense discussion, where my body won that conversation until I met super riders on 15th Aug Breakfast meet at Karnavati Club. (Vivek/ KK/ Pinkey/ JK and others). I could convenience my self with their discussions and instantly I decided to register before my body wins over my mind and that I did. 
 
You might be knowing that my cycle has very bad reputation in getting punctured so often between Aug 2015 to Aug 2016. Dr UMA suggested me to do HAVAN (during Zanjri ride) and that I did with help of Guru Vivekji. He suggested me to buy good Tyre and  I overcome from that issue. Suddenly after one year, I came across the same problem after I registered. On 20th Aug,  Vivek/ Tapan/ Pinky and My self rode together as preparation and again My cycle got three punctures back to back. I got scared again and started thinking negatively. (What If My cycle get punctured during Abu ride ?????)  I kept four tubes in my bags with this fear as 200% contingency plan. These thoughts were so scary but there was no step back now. Finally I fixed the problem and got little more confident.
 
My ride started at 0415 on 26th Aug, where I met all riders at Vaishno Devi. I decided to ride alone for 30 to 40 km till I get confident on Tyre so I do not disturbed other rides and that I did.  (Though there was sufficient support). I was only 2 km behind the ABC train and met them at Shanku’s for breakfast. Before starting for second slot (Shanku’s to Unjha), I joined ABC train and enjoyed drafting behind champions. Vivek and Tapan were really helping well in maintaining speed through out the route. Dr Harsh helped in stretching of body and that was most enjoyable moment of the trip.  Thank you Dr Harsh for such wonderful support and clicks as always. 
 
 
Unjha to Palanpur stretch was also passed with same speed and temperament. Real riding started only after Palanpur, where I encountered Head wind, Over bridges and Heat stocks simultaneously. I ensured that my legs should not talk to my mind and visa versa, but it did not happen. Some how both started flirting with each other just 20 km before Abu road. I could not convinced either of them and put my bike on Car rack. I took nap almost for 20 km with lots of guilt feelings. I was intentionally not looking at Uma and Harshvardhan while approaching Abu road just to avoid guilt feelings. 
 
My mind and Body got reactivated instantly after I got call from my wife asking for status of my ride. I told her that ” I am in Car.” She told me that she will not allow me for such trip in future, if I quit ride in half way. I decided immediately to climb hill.. Further to that I got more inspired looking at Super Woman UMA and Tyro Rider HARSHVARDHAN. I decided to climb and that I did within my comfort zone either by inspiration or by fear or by spirit. I was in search for water fall on the way to take bath but I could not find. Vivek really performed superb by climbing Ahmedabad to Gurushikhar effortlessly and HELMETS OFF TO HIM.
 
After reaching I called my wife and informed her that I completed full ride with 20 km pause in between and she greeted me. (I think this was also an accomplishment) 
 
We five riders started Gurushikhar climb on next day (KK/ Tapan/ Pinky/ Harshvardhan and My self). I was comfortably climbing without any major efforts. I met Harshvardhan on the half way, where we celebrated climb by clicking photographs and singing songs in dense fog. This was my third climb to Gurushikhar and this time I climbed last four kilometers without any break and I was so much happy about it. Surprise meeting of Gaurav bhai recalled my Abu ride of 2015. 
 
I did Video chat with family from Gurushikhar and informed them full accomplishment of the trip (So I will be allowed again for such trip)… Down hill was so much comfortable event though traffic, few bad stretch and dense fog. 
 
Trip was really wonderful and Looking forward such trips again. I do thank you to all who have had put their efforts in organizing this event and I do extend apology to whom I troubled, if any. Special thanks to Dr Harsh for clicking such a wonderful memories that I will show it to my children and grand children to make them proud of their father and grand father. 
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Hopefully this is a short email ………..
 
 
 
With Best Regards,
 
Tejas JA Joshi 

____________________________________________________________________________________________

I measured my weight after expedition and it was 1.6 Kg reduction. That has inspired me lot. Looking forward one more trip again.

I stopped writing blogs for almost last 20 months. Now time has permitted me write again on all balance topics I have thought of.

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10th LOVE of life

Two decades back, I had to borrow cycle from my cousin (thanx deval bhai) to commute to my collage and workplace almost for five years (from 1993 – 97) under compulsion. I was so fascinated with yamaha and kinetic honda, that my friends were enjoying. I was not at all in position to afford a vehicle and of-course not even fuel to run it. Often, I had to face humiliation at work place since, I possessed cycle. New security guard never miss to check my lunch-box along with workers at exit gate of campus, since I had cycle. They always wondering that engineers should have bike/ scooter but not cycle. There was no any option but to convert that compulsion in to an opportunity and accept the fact to enjoy my life. Fortunately, I could make out few friends, who were also riding along with me and few friends started riding with me to accompany (kunjal/ chirag/ rakesh/ jignesh). I was riding BSA SLR of blue color.

I recently acquired new bike and that has rejuvenated my life drastically.  

Ahmedabad is falling under earthquake-prone region called ZONE 5, that represents intensity of ground motion. Being a civil engineer, I used to analyze zones in terms of earthquake till now. But, for last few months I came across ZONES, that represents cycling training zones. Definitions of zones are totally changed now. I transformed from commuter to cyclist, the way EARTHQUAKE zones turned in to TRAINING zones.

Happiness in riding

Happiness in riding

Every alternate day, alarm goes on sharp at 0530 AM and that inspires me to rush to kitchen to prepare hydration and getting ready with food, apparel, helmet, gloves, lights, selfie-stick, air-pump, extra tubes, and tools including puncture kit put together in camel-bag. Ohhhh… I never miss to keep cash since, it saves me when there is puncture. I grab my fully charged phone and scroll through notifications and switching on “MapMyRide” as I walk to GIENT SCR 1. My mind, eyes, fingers and legs starts riding and start thinking about today’s social events, official calls and project deadlines all few more. 

ABCh2 171

In earlier days, I used to introspect while sitting on commode and took almost all important decisions of my life, but now that acrylic seat is turned to saddle. I used to ride alone, If I need to conclude on issues whereas, I do buddy riding If I need to enjoy sports or leisure ride.

Whenever,  I miss cycling than I feel like missing something in life like stagnant water in pond, whereas riding makes me energetic like flying in the sky without wings. Eventually, I realized that cycling is part of my routine. Yes, I feel like I fall in love with my 10th love of life. I do romance with GIANT SCR.  

10th Love of life

10th Love of life

That would be so unfair, If I do not express my gratitude to all, who have aspired me to do cycling. I started biking almost three years back (June 2012)

I was involved in design process for a pharmaceutical campus, where process was driven based on concept called “SUSTAINABILITY”.  All efforts were made to ensure that concept is intact to bring change fundamentals of people’s life. Though out the process, my sub-conscious questioned my self, whether ” Do I really do something by my own, where I support the concept.???” It is like “charity begins at home”. I decided to implement the concept before imparting to others. During that time, I had to commute on two wheeler from home to bus-stop to reach workplace. I quickly grab that opportunity and bought a second-hand cycle (just to ensure that no body steal it) to step towards sustainable activity by replacing two wheeler.

Cycle saves fuel and environment subsequently.........

Cycle saves fuel , space and environment subsequently………

Nothing is possible without consent of boss and spouse, of-course. Fortunately, I have been encouraged by both personalities to become more health conscious and that I am doing so far. My kids have started getting ready for school by their own, by which I can ride. After all family is everything.

Similarly, ABC (Ahmedabad Bicycling Club) is also my family, where I am getting educated on “How to ride”. One of email received from ABC member stating “In cycling there is nothing like ok speed. Your speed is always less than someone and always more than someone else. Its how your body and mind react on any day and how much trained your body is. One can always go faster” This statement inspired me to get registered for Mount Abu climb to check my mental strength and that I did successfully. Climbing mountain at  5500 ft height was a breathtaking experience. Specially descending ride was so scary but I enjoyed. This was my first adventure trip of life and much more such rides and centuries are in pipeline. 

ABC promotes cycling as a sports

ABC promotes cycling as a sports

Today, one of ABC buddy has suggested to put my biking plans in “To do” list, that I did.

  • Cyclothon 2016
  • Tour Of Nilgiris (TFN)
  • Manali – Leh – Khardungla (MLK)
  • BRM 

Cycling4________________________________________END OF DOCUMENT _

 

 

 

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….The Secret….

I was enjoying evening walk on Love Lane with my female friend during 90’s, when I was doing Engineering. Road besides Gujarat University passing via ATIRA was so called Love Lane in Ahmedabad. There was an eagerness to see love birds sitting on road side and that  inspired us to walk on that street without bothering time. We started walking around by  looking at them. They were decent and cute & not like love birds being seen at Bandstand – Bandra @ Mumbai. My friend was so worried and started thinking that “’What would happen, if her father see us roaming in this street.”’ And that was not believable, and impossible at all since, her father never pass from this road. But she continued worrying . It was around 8 O’ clock and night was getting darker to darkest but we continued to walk beyond ATIRA. Suddenly, one car was found behind us and somebody started horn. We just turned back to checkout driver. And it was a surprise. He was father of my female friend. We never understood that how it happened ? ? ?

Such incidents can be relate with dialogue of SRK “’kahte hain ki ……….agar kisi cheez ko shiddat se chhaho to puri kaynat usey tumse milane ki koshish mein lag jati hai.”’ from  movie OM SHANTI OM released in 2008. But still it was unable to understand that how that happens scientifically.

I was answered two years later, when I attended an outdoor training at Silent Hill Resort near Manor organized by office. I always considered such occasion as a opportunity to get connected with senior management to share thoughts, ideas and frustrations as well. Outdoor training helps in ventilating my self and that happened to me.

My self with different Look

During 1st day of presentation, our HR Manager had presented small part of movie called “’The SECRET”. That small part of movie revived scientific reason, where I stuck few years back and made me believing magic. Movie really aspired me and carved an impression in deeper parts of my brain, that slowly slowly created space while noting down few terminologies heard from the movie like “’ VISION PANEL/ LAW OF ATTRACTION/ ATTENTION GOES WHERE ENERGY FLOWS”‘ and much more.

One different type of eagerness took place within me to know more about movie The SECRET and that forced to go to HR Manager requesting for full movie. But I could not get it. Hence, I could not watch full movie & Secret really became SECRET for me for longer time.

After completing first day’s lectures and interesting field training, I along with my colleague sat with our HR Manager to chat. We were sitting besides river-side courtyard, where sounds of flowing water energizing me and cold wind-waves pumping energy within me. I respected those inspiration & opened up boldly to him by sharing lot of departmental issues supported by various examples. We were not clearly visible to him in that black & dark night but surrounding silence ensured that my honest words get converted in to speech suitable to my expressions to convey my massage clearly. I felt like that sound of flowing water, cold and dry wind waves & those friendly bats were nodding to endorse my honesty.

Group of Trainee

One of the biggest difficulty was our BOSS. It is believed that having good boss and good wife is the best fortune of life. Here, I was not fortunate enough for not having good boss. There are only options to resolve this problem, either change the Boss or change the Job. HR manager heard me patiently. In the end of conversation he indulged and advised.

He advised to me build my career with construction industry, where my skill get best utilized. It was always a matter of discussion between various groups that only Mechanical/ Electrical Engineers can grow in pharmaceutical industry but not civil engineers. I never convinced my self by this philosophy and I started to find out those specific points which differentiate my self from mechanical/ electrical engineers of pharmaceutical companies. I always found my self restless, that pushed to do all efforts to grow in Pharmaceutical Industry only. I continuously worked on many designs in Generic Engineering (Civil + Electrical + Mechanical + Instrumentation + Architectural etc) in Pharmaceutical Industry with successful track record and rewards as well

This would not have happened, if HR manager would not have asked me to change Industry to grow. I ensured that his kind advise live within my thoughts to drive my efforts & decision to catch the goal. I intentionally picked up an opportunity to head Project Department in one of Pharmaceutical MNC, even though I had parallel opportunities in other Industry just to prove that I can grow in Pharmaceutical Industry being a civil engineer.

I recalled that conversation with HR Manager & movie “The SECRET” and  immediately downloaded that from you tube & watched it lonely to re-energize my self. Recently, I watched Vidhya Balan interview with Anupam Kher (Episode 6 : 10th Aug/ 30th minute), where she talked out the same philosophy.” If we want something, than let us put our desire out in to the universe like a gas balloon and start doing our efforts rather than holding our desires tightly. Let, universe will make things happen for us.”‘ 

Herewith, I do share movie The SECRET for your. I do insist to watch when you are along, that will really make impact. Wishing you all the best ! ! ! !

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>>>>SPEED >>>SPEED>>SPEED>

Few minutes back, I got a call from my old friend from Mumbai. I had wonderful chat on SPEED of life, qualitative time being spent with family members and socializing activities for few minutes. Conversation of few minutes really inspired me to write something about SPEED of life. And thats It is about SPEED of life and not a movie SPEED. Lets try to recall those small events & conversations had happened in our childhood. I am sure, that you would be in position to murmur for long time them with carrying cute smile on your face for longer time. Also, it would touch to your heart precisely. Now, Lets try to recall few events just happened in last year… You would hardly find any memory, that can bring smile on your face.

Few days back, I come across a story, that was floating around Whats App. Grandson took his Grandfather to Japan in vacation. They decided to ride Bullet train to experience SPEED with luxurious ride. Train started from Start destination to End destination within an hour and that was really amazing. Grandson was so happy, with his enthusiasm and excitement, He asked Grandfather about his experience. Grandfather replied

“‘I did not experienced except SPEED of train. SPEED did not allow me to see outside spaces, environment, different people from different regions/ culture, cattle, rivers/ waterways falling on the way, those beautiful birds flying in the sky & much more. I could see only blurred lines on transparent window glasses. SPEED ensured that we reached at End destination but on what cost??? We missed experiencing beautiful earth, water, sky, animals gifted by god. We could only looked at people sitting around us busy with their own Mobiles/ I-pads/ Laptops.”‘

Grandson understood the context of reply & really started looking for his own life. Lets we treat our-self as Grandson of that old man & try to introspect  to find our own existence in such a big world, to feel each & every heart bits from our body, to listen our breath, that can answer our questions honestly and all our interactions, that route through our lovely heart. I am very much in agreement with the story & its content. I have started to live slow life by spending quality life with my wife & twins. I stopped living with SPEED for last couple of years & now my lovely family is also enjoying my presence between them.

I was working for a MNC Pharmaceutical company during 2004 – 2010. My twins were also born in 2004. This duration was a golden spell of my professional life but worst part of my personal life. I had to travel continuously between two  locations, where I had to stay for longer duration. I was enjoying frequent flight traveler benefits, night life at Goa & Mumbai, stay at good hotels & much more that made me happiest. On another side of coin, I had to do lots of efforts to get friendly with twins, when I reach at home on Friday/ Saturday. I learnt lots of tricks & tips to make a good design but I never learnt baby language to understand their need. Some time, one twin refuse to hug me when I reach at home for few hours and that always made me sad but there was no option. In fact, there were lots of options but I never tried to look at those options. Still, I do not recall their childhood face until I see their image and that is really horrible part of mine. Now, I do not want to live my life with SPEED. I want to celebrate every hours of life, experiencing nature, collecting memories, making friends, enjoying music & much more. I am collecting & making a big collage of their childhood pics to recreate their babyhood around me.

1-collage

Everyday, I used to cycle on road streets with SPEED. That day, I decided to cycle with SLOW pace by experiencing front facing cool wind by getting inspired by one poem. I read that on Whats App update posted by well wisher. Poem was all about remembering our older days. That encourage & pushed me to look around me with SLOW pace of cycling to ensure that I experience that missing life, missing objects that can touch to few threads of my heart…..Lets enjoy that pics with SLOW speed ……..

Getting steady on TREE @ Sandheli

Getting steady on TREE @ Sandheli

Village Life....Very SLOW life....I lIke it

Village Life….Very SLOW life….I lIke it

Old games.....

Old games…..

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Medha handling hand pump at Sandheli village

1-ww

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05061977

5th June 1977 is my birthday. This year, I celebrated my birthday with lots of well planned activities. I would say that whole day was full of joy, fun & entertaining rather than a hectic day. I never realized before that my birthday is also being celebrated as a World Environment Day ! ! ! ! This year I  celebrated both events gracefully. I could see lots of events being organized in city to create awareness on Green Earth .

Let me go back one day before to re-memorize the day.

1st – Few days back, I created an event on Face Book for going work places by riding bicycle on World Environment for creating an awareness. I received few of responses, who willingly joined for a wonderful social cause. As a part of the event, I took my bicycle and started riding to office. I had to carry lot of things on cycle looking at day’s schedule. I enjoyed slow pace cycling facing cool wind early in the morning. I started at 6.30 Am. I reached office at 8.30 AM with few tea break, crossing two over bridge/ under bridges & small trip to River front.

Reached to office by riding Cycle ! !

Reached to office by riding Cycle ! !

2nd – My office is a really happening place, where everyday start with new event, where HR is playing vital role. Office also believe in celebrating employees birthday to make them feel special. Company is winning “‘Best Place to Work award” for consecutive three years. Following video talks about work culture of my work place.

 

Now, that was my turn, where  I was called gracefully & greeted by ”Happy Birthday”‘ song and putting up birthday cap as well. They gifted a small box of chocolate, and I offered them a returned gift instantly. I also brought a gift for them, representing poster containing intelligent pictures on environment awareness messages. I clicked those pictures from painted wall at Gujarat University. Whole day passed in accepting birthday wishes & distributing chocolates in office.

Birthday Celebration at Office ! ! !

Birthday Celebration at Office ! ! !

Collages3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3nd – I had to rush to RTO office to complete process of making duplicate license. I lost my original two wheeler license few years back. I never bothered to get new license since, I was not driving any two wheeler, but now I posses Activa. I rushed to RTO office at 11.30 PM and returned at 1.00 PM. Luckily, my work got completed in short time. You can note my birth date in document below.

4th – I am a member of Ambuja Cement. They used to organize interesting & informative lectures on various issues/ subjects. On 5th June, they organized a very good lecture on ‘”‘Structures conceptual of High-rise building”‘ by Er. Himanshu Parikh.  Since, my current assignment is also on a High-rise construction project.  I did not want to miss this lecture, as it seems very important to my project. Finally, I reached to lecture hall at 6.30 PM & attended such a interesting lecture up to 8.10 PM.

5th – Decathlon (a cycle store) had organized a night cycle ride at 9.00 PM. It would have been so  in-justifying, If I would have missed it. I registered long back for this event, for which I was enthusiastic. I started at 8.15 PM from Ambuja Knowledge Center & reached at location sharp at 8.45 PM. I had to change my clothes from office ware to sports ware. I found a reliable cubical near by to change cloths. My family also reached at location to cheer and motivate. Ride started at 9.30 PM on roads of Ahmedabad & touched finish point at 10.00 PM. That was slow pace riding for 15 Km. I enjoyed the ride like enjoying  music. It was really a great experience. Looking forward such events again & again in future.

Reena, Meha & Medha joined me at Start point to motivate me ... Love you girls ! ! !

Reena, Meha & Medha joined me at Start point to motivate me … Love you girls ! ! !

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That’s how, I celebrated my birthday & World Environment Day together with lots of fun, joy & entertainment. Finally, I started riding back to my home. I knew that my home is far away from finish point. I preferred to stay  at my cousin’s home rather than riding up to my home. All together, I had 45 Km ride on a single day on various routes. It was already 11.00 PM & that was time for sweet dreams.

It had been a practice in older days, where parents register birth dates of their child in month of May or June to ensure that their child do not have to waste their one year , when child is born in Sept/ Oct/ Nov month. I am one of them. In earlier days, parents were so fussy in taking school admission before time by registering wrong birth date without realizing complexities in legal formalities & documentation. Now, I decided to celebrate my wrong birthday even, since there is a strong reason that I share the day with Environment Day.

In-fact, I am Libran by sun-sign  as well as by star-sign. My actual birthday is 15th Oct 1977, that I share with Dr Kalam. Wishing you all Happy World Environment Day ! ! ! . Please join me in creating awareness in making Green Earth. Please click on my link for one of my blog on similar context.

https://mehadha.wordpress.com/2014/05/15/we-must-change-over-ways/

 

 

 

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An Idiot Box in 80’s / 90’s ! ! !

Few days before, there was one video clip floating around Face-Book pages, that really touched to few threads of my heart. I watched that clipping two to three times. Therefore, I thought to collect few memories and consolidating them in one website, that I can be shared with my kids and I can even watch them to dive in childhood days whenever I want……………

Advertisements were so simple in conveying the message and one could really connect with own life, we always felt that it’s a reflection of our life only. Lets check out those advertisements and connected moments from the past, that would help in realizing simple and beautiful life, culture, social connectivity, way of life & much more what we had. It Do you miss those golden years?  Huuummmm…………..of course, I do.. Where did those days lost, vanished before we could know it.

A blog all about recalling the “Cute times” I grown up watching as a child in 80’s/ 90’s on Doordarshan national channel. This blog calls to have Fun refreshing and cherishing some unforgettable and memorable television advertisement, that still drag me in past moments on DD. Isn’t it a great feeling to find those great visuals, we had once watched when we were just kids? Don’t you feel those characters still connect to us in the present time someway or the other?  Well, I assume we do and why not! there has been some kind of good influence on our minds after all we have had a great association with the past shows that aired till the mid 90’s :) So Let’s keep cherishing those lovely memories right here. 

Here’s a wonderful chance to ”Retrieve’ those moments by enjoying clips of few Advertisement of our”GOLDEN ERA”‘ of an Idiot Box on when Doordarshan was only a television channel.

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Email to Sachin Pilot – dtd 18Feb2014

I remember the day, when I got an opportunity to hear Mr Sachin Pilot. I never heard him before, Yes he impressed. He was a member of Indian Parliament. He is representing Ajmer constituency of Rajasthan and is a member of the Indian National Congress. He was Minister of Corporate Affairs. 

His speech was so informative, where He shared his views & Ideas on CSR (corporate Social Responsibility) activities being enforced by Government.  Under the Companies Act, 2013, that replaces the nearly six-decade old legislation governing the way corporate  function and regulated in India. The new rules, which would be applicable from 2014-15 fiscal. Profitable companies with a size-able business would have to spend every year at least 2% of three-year average profit on CSR works. But, No where It is said that how to spend the money comes out from CSR.

Government did not want to be the judge and jury on how to spend the CSR money but they have made sure that environment, ecology, wildlife are major areas where companies can spend the money if they wish. Still there is no defined policy & compulsion….CSR activities run by ”WISH”

Now, Questions are

  1. Where this money goes ???
  2. Money being spent is really going to add value in lives of Indian citizen ???
  3. Why all corporate can not target one common goal defined by Government ???
  4. Why government does not want to define comprehensive goals in alignment with identified needs ????

I DO HAVE ANSWERS FOR THESE. In this context, I wrote an email to Mr Pilot (which is not yet answered). I thought to spread the Idea with strategic document through WordPress platform, hopping that It reaches to relevant person. Following is the email.

I wrote and Email to Mr Sachin Pilot

I wrote an Email to Mr Sachin Pilot – PAGE 1

PAGE 2

I wrote an Email to Mr Sachin Pilot – PAGE 2

I have prepared a detail document called  “GISP Concept” represents its basics, need for implementation & probable implementation strategy with suitable technology. GISP will be implemented with joint efforts of Government/ Industry/ Society partnership. Major financing will be done by Industry under CSR activity. Governments have to act as a manager & perform their role as an administrator for making policy and releasing required subsidy to industry.

This campaign will be directed by all players on common platform. (Government bodies at state level, Government bodies at village, Taluka level, Architects, Civil Engineers, Socialist Economist, Vendors, Bankers, NGO and Developers etc.) Request to refer a document having 60 slides approx. 

Comprehensive report on GISP CONCEPT…….Click on the link……..

Spread this document more & more, that can reach to concerns.

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We must change over ways ! ! ! !

Yesterday, I was invited in one of Lecture at Ambuja Cement Knowledge Center. Speaker had shaken our mind by presenting few scary data. We really started thinking to contribute by small action even. Days are passing through & our children are loosing their future tremendously  day by day. We will not be able to provide our proud of society, culture, nature and much more to them in coming days, that our grandparents gifted us. Our children will shame on us, while facing that scary future, that we can foresee today. Its right time to introspect & ask questions to our selves.

Is is not our responsibility to give them graceful future to our children, that our grandparents gave us?????

What are we not acting wisely in day-to-day life to make difference in our way of life ????

Are we really convinced to step with collective efforts ?????

We are snatching our children future & behaving as a Irresponsible human being....

We are snatching our children future  and                                                                                                                          behaving as an Irresponsible human being………..

” Coming here today, I have no hidden agenda. I am fighting for my future. Loosing my future is not like loosing an election or few points of stock market. I am here to speak for all generations to come. I am here to speak on behalf of the starving children around the world, whose cries go unheard. I am here to speak for the countless animals dying across the planets because they have nowhere left to go.

WE CAN NOT AFFORD TO BE NOT HEARD.

I am afraid to go out in the sun now because of the holes in the ozone. I am afraid to breathe the air because I don’t know what chemicals are in it. Now we hear about animals and plants going extinct every day – vanishing forever. I have dreamed of seeing the great heard of wild animals, jungles and rain-forests full of birds and butterflies, but now I wonder if they will even exits for my children to see.”‘

These words are not mine, this is from one 12 years old girl addressing to UN summit in 1992. I do have humble request to invest your seven minutes in listing this video, that will awake your soul & inspire to make a difference. Enjoy the video.

Day by day, we are becoming more selfish as an Individual but, we never bothered to look at another side of coin. Have we ever, tried to look at our surroundings sensibly, that it getting away from our own life slowly. Nope, we only think of our self, our life, our comforts, our earning & so on……Wish list never getting ended up but one day life will end up. To save our nature, globe, animals, trees, environment, water is everybody’s responsibility & not one institute or an organization established by Government….

……..OZONE layer is getting vanished …but WHO CARES ???

……..Sparrows are isolating from nature ….but WHO CARES ????

……..Water table is getting down day by day ……..but WHO CARES ????

……..Forest are cut to build our homes & furniture ……but WHO CARES ????

These are not exaggerating the situation but it represent reality, which we do not want to face with courage, even It impact on our day-to-day life. We are busy with our own life but never tried to look at another side of it. Lets be sensitive enough & start putting our efforts. Even small effort from each individual will make a difference. This is for our next generations, who have lots of expectations from us. Therefore, I do request my family, friends, well wishers to join hands to put a collective efforts to make a difference by changing our way of life. Beginning can start from anywhere from anyone. Lets demonstrate, ”We are what we do, Not What we say. Lets us our actions reflect our words”

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Ahmedabad Wanderings – Wall Painting Snaps

I do follow one blogger named ”Leanne Cole”, who is an art photographer living in Australia. I read her blog today, that helped me in completing one of my blog drafted few years back. I could not dedicate relevant words to express it meaningfully. Thanks Leanne ! ! ! !

I was in Bhopal in 2006-07, where I noticed road side walls painted with God/ Goddess in pictorial language. Intention behind the idea was to control/ stop performing PEE in public spaces by commuters. Idea really worked & slowly it got replicated to various cities of India. The idea was also adopted by Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) but the context was slightly different from others cities.

AMC implemented the idea to create vibrancy on road side walls of selected streets of Ahmedabad city. As a part of this exercise, selected walls along some main roads painted with pictures of murals, folk art, animals and designs inspired from the nature etc to create general awareness on various social issues like Save Girls, Global Warming, Culture & Heritage of Ahmedabad and also stopping PEE along wall sides. This move pleased to the eyes of motorists and commuters traveling on the road. Hundreds of artist from various institution, social bodies & city residents invested their days in creating awareness by pictorial theme. Every year, this event get executed in last week of December under Kankariya Carnival celebration.

I traveled on those roads several times but never bothered to read content of images except looking at vibrant colors. One day, I was in the city to attend Exhibition at Gujarat university ground. I took an opportunity & reached at location two hours before with my camera. I felt so lucky enough by capturing those images before it get washed away in coming season. Hope, AMC might have put their effort in preserving these walls as well as clicked them as a record.

I could strongly connect with  these images. Image were certainly capable enough in stamping an impression on the people’s life & society as a whole. I could establish a defined link of “‘ GLOBAL WARMING & ENERGY EFFICIENCY”‘ between these images & my job, where I was working as a LEED coordinator. (I thought to use these images to create a calendar/ computer screen saver throughout the organization to spread an awareness, since “‘Energy Efficiency”‘ was a core value of an organization. But I could not execute that Idea, that I will execute somewhere else at-least.) Another day, I went for a walk through some other parts of the city where I can explore more clicks. I dragged my wife & kids into the city and we walked from one end to another while I took photos along the way. I could make that walk more interactive, by answering most of the questions asked by my daughters, hopefully.

I know, I am not a photographer but I do have sense in capturing meaningful images. I am not sure about quality of image but I am very much sure that content of images can create wonders. I am fairly certain that my friends, family & blog followers will make a note of these massage & spread it further for a social cause.  Enjoy images & Wishing Happy Week Ahead ! ! ! ! !

GREEN EARTH OR GRAY EARTH  ???????

GREEN EARTH OR GRAY EARTH ???????

The SIDI SAIYAD JALI represent Ahmedabad Moghal Rulers

The SIDI SAIYAD JALI represent Ahmedabad 

MEDHA (my daughter)

MEDHA (my daughter)

MEHA (my daughter)

MEHA (my daughter)

CULTURE OF KUTCHH  (MY DAUGTHER MEDHA)

CULTURE OF KUTCHH (MY DAUGHTER MEDHA)

INDIAN GOD - GODDESS

INDIAN GOD – GODDESS

PLACES IN INDIA

PLACES IN INDIA

INDIAN POLITICIANS ! ! !

INDIAN POLITICIANS ! ! !

SAVE TIGERS ! !

SAVE TIGERS ! !

INDIAN RURAL ! ! !

INDIAN RURAL ! ! !

NEED WOMAN EMPOWERMENT ! ! !

NEED WOMAN EMPOWERMENT ! ! !

POSTURE REPRESENTS GRACEFUL FOLK DANCES OF INDIA

POSTURE REPRESENTS GRACEFUL FOLK DANCES OF INDIA

YES, EVERY DROP OF WATER COUNTS ! ! !

YES, EVERY DROP OF WATER COUNTS ! ! !

EVEN GODDESS PARVATI ASKED TO GOD SHIVA TO SAVE WATER ! ! ! !

EVEN GODDESS PARVATI ASKED TO GOD SHIVA TO SAVE WATER ! ! ! !

WOMAN ! !

WOMAN ! !

REGIONAL VEHICLE OF SAURASTRA/ KUTCHH/ RURAL PART OF GUJARAT

REGIONAL VEHICLE OF SAURASTRA/ KUTCHH/ RURAL PART OF GUJARATA

REFLECTION  ! ! !

REFLECTION ! ! !

RESPECT WOMAN ! ! !

RESPECT WOMAN ! ! !

CULTURE & HARRITAGE OF INDIA

CULTURE & HERITAGE OF INDIA

KNOWING HUMAN ! ! !

KNOWING HUMAN ! ! !

SAVE GIRLS ! ! ! !

SAVE GIRLS ! ! ! !

SAVE WORLD ! ! !

SAVE WORLD ! ! !

SAVE WATER ! ! !

SAVE WATER ! ! !

SAVE WORLD ! ! ! !

SAVE WORLD ! ! ! !

SAVE TREES ! ! !

SAVE TREES ! ! !

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90’s Civil Engineer

During 90’s, civil engineering batches were partially full. I still remember, that 28 seats were hardly occupied out of 60 seats. That has created scarcity of experienced civil engineers to fulfill current need. There is a demand-supply gap in the range of 82% – 86% in the core professions group comprising civil engineers, architects and planners by 2020. It is extremely difficult to find a good civil engineer having 15 – 20 years of experience, since lot of engineers changed their filed (from civil to IT/ Electrical etc), few settled in US/ UK/ Ausie, few migrated to Gulf countries, few joined their family business and only few engineers (like me) continued. (view link http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2011-11-17/news/30410054_1_civil-engineers-professionals-skill-development)

A CREATOR. Proud for being civil engineer.....

A CREATOR. Proud for being civil engineer…..  

CIVIL ENGINEERS are considered as CREATOR, that apply physical and scientific principles for solving the problems of society, to change the universe and I am really proud to be a creator. But anybody knows, what was condition of such great creators in 80’s/ 90’s decade, when they passed out from Institutes/ Universities. I expressed my feelings in one of  my blog (use link – https://mehadha.wordpress.com/2013/08/11/15-kg-potato/). Those civil engineers have witnessed that bad time of construction industry, when they were exploited like slaves.

  • Civil Engineers were paid very nominal with compared to their work. Fresh civil engineers were paid Rs 500, Five Yr experienced – Rs 2000, 10 Yrs experienced – Rs 3500 – 5000 for a month. Salary disbursement was even irregular. Sometimes, they were paid bimonthly or trimonthly.
  • Job security was not at all talked about. Appointment letters were never issued issued to anyone. Terms & conditions were unknown to them. Developers were animating their engineers as per their convenience.
  • One pedestal fan (steady), three chairs (with hard seat), one table (enough to read out construction drawing, may be A1 size), one cupboard (to store drawings/ files etc) and one land line phone (kept under lock & key) was the office set up to work.
  • AMAS (New moon day/ dark night day) was the only monthly holiday for civil engineers since, labors/ workers dose not work on that day. How interesting to hear it today???  Engineers had to accommodate with life of labors/ workers who never even appeared in schools.
  • Builder/ developer depute full time security guard (PAGI) at construction site, usually they were shepherd. PAGI were treated as most loyal & trustworthy person for builder than site engineer. Engineers were also be careful while dealing with PAGI since, they can directly report to Builder. Engineer can loose his job, if PAGI do any misreporting.
  • Civil Engineers were least respected person at construction site. They were accountable only for counting cement bags/ bricks/ making daily reports etc. Rest all technical work dealt  by non-technical contractors and their supervisors. Engineers had to create fronts for contractors to work upon.
  • Builders get updated on progress directly contractors without involving site engineers and Quality get discussed when Engineer was required to be fired, otherwise not. Core target was to complete construction work & to save money on construction process/ construction material. (I have personally seen few contractor gave target to their engineers to save cement during concreting. Site engineers were appraised, if they save more cement) 
  • Engineers were threaten badly by head mason/ carpenter, if their executed work get checked by engineer. (i.e slab thickness during concreting/ plumb of wall/ column steel, plaster undulations etc). Engineer had to just stand over there to fill the gaps of human body. (I was threaten twice by head mason while measuring slab thickness. He ask to cut my fingers with trowel, if I do it again) 
  • Most interestingly, son-in-law/ brother-in-low of builder/ developer pretend their ownership on employee more than owner. We had to respect them as they are also boss. They used to visit construction site so frequently, just to spend their time in leisure and we had to bare them respectfully.
  • Engineers were not allowed to walk on the way of labor gang while they pour concrete on slab. It was considered as disturbance to them and head mason can fire to engineer for the same. Vibrating concrete was responsibility of head mason, that he perform with over-confidence always. He never knew that why he is doing it…..??
  • Safety at work was ignored widely. We had to climbed on 20mt/ 30mt height to check correctness of beam bottoms and slab shuttering without any PPE’s. I never seen a safety belt in that decade. (I had to walk on wooden plank at 6th floor to check dimensions, I did it once & then never)
  • Humiliating engineers with bad words was routine. Those survived who bared, others left their jobs or fired.

No safety at 10 Mt high Bridge Pier cap over river. No PPE's given to engineers/ workers...... Only productivity, concreting, progress ..............

No safety railing at 10 Mt high Bridge Pier cap over river. No PPE’s were given to engineers/ workers…… Only productivity, concreting, progress …………..

It was fortunate enough that I witness these all only for five years. Golden era of civil engineering started in 2001 after Gujarat Earth Quake, but unfortunately with loss of thousands of lives. But that had carried out technical, behavioral, cultural & educational revolution in construction Industry. Results of that revolution is seen now. The natural calamity was an eye-opener to developers and designers who had ignored defined construction processes.

Sudden changes were noticed after Earth Quake and development strategy of  BJP government. I never preferred to migrate outside Gujarat, looking at reverse migration due to development in Gujarat. Needless to say that successful projects of BRTS, Riverfront development, Vadodara bus stand, Narmada Canal, Gujarat tourism, SEZ development, that  have had created ample of opportunities for civil engineers/ architects/ contractors/ interior designers. Now, civil engineers are being treated like an IT engineer in terms of involvement, reorganization, remunerations, facility, welfare & much more. Civil engineers are respected like others engineering streams by knowing facts that civil engineers can make changes in people’s life by creating facilities……..

Respect can be experienced not described..........

Respect can be experienced not described……….

I wrote this blog one month back but I did not published it since blog could be considered as advertisement for BJP government. I am not a BJP worker or supporting to any political party. I believe in change for better tomorrow. I believe in personalities, either he is Mr Narendra Modi or Mr Sachin Pilot or Dr Abdul Kalam. We all know, that change comes by choice & not by coincidence. Change comes with consequence. Lets get ready to face consequences.

Today, I was surfing YouTube & found that there is much more to happen in Gujarat & India. We need more civil engineers and techno-crates to work on these projects. Looking at these video, it seems that GOLDEN ERA of civil engineering is yet to come. Let us be ready to take challenges to change the Gujarat/ India. I do request to readers to spend quality time to watch these video that can energize your mind to move forward……………….

  • Proposed Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMRC)  

  • Proposed Dholera SIR 

  • Proposed GIFT city

  • Proposed IRON man statue 

  • Gujarat Development Facts 

This blog is dedicated to all civil engineers, who are passed out in 80’s/ 90’s and  I am one of them. Yes,  have passed out my civil engineering in 1995.

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life @ bhoiwada ni POL

The word “‘POL”‘ is derived from the Sanskrit word “‘PRATOLI”‘ meaning entrance to an enclosed area. A typical POL would have only one or two entrances and also some secret entrances known only to people residing in a pol. I come to know the meaning of POL just few months back during visit to Udaipur. The street having a big gates allowing elephants is called as “‘POL”‘, street having small gates allowing humans called as “‘KHADKI'” and small room connected to courtyard are called as ”CHHINI” (usually a store room). 

I lived in BHOIWADA NI POL for couple of years and by default during summer vacation till I turned 14th. My pol life is deeply connects with my Grand Ma (Nani), with whom I lived most of my childhood. My wife always anticipate a topic of discussion of POL, whenever we do have family get together and we certainly share those unforgettable memories.

My self with my cousins & Nani

My self with my cousins & Nani

There are ample of reasons Why POL life was the most memorable life ????

  • Tradition & customs of POL implies the carrying out of mutual give and take among members. The population composition of POL used to be homogeneous along caste of families from groups such as brahmin (pundit), businessman (vaniya), carpenters (suthar), barner (Nai) and other castes as well. Cooperation is extended to neighbors in day to day living and on special occasion like death,marriage and birth and such other occasion when a family requires the help of the collective unit.
  • Everyone knows everyone in the POL and stranger can easily located by POL dwellers. Once the stranger enter the POL, he quickly surrounded by a group of young boys and children who crowd round him asking “‘ KONU KAM CHHE”‘ meaning To whom you are looking for ??  If stranger is entered the right POL, he soon taken to the family he wants to meet. Young boys & children plays very important role in creating social connections between various groups.
  • Cricket was also very popular game in pole along with other local games. Children try to follow the rules which are locally interpreted and decided by mutual agreement. Quarrels take place when the agreement is not finalized and the game is discontinued. Few rules like ”CUT & RUN” where all balls are required to hit to take run”‘. Batsman is out, if he dose not play the ball./ Batsman is out when balls get caught even after few falls on surrounding walls.
  • Few more games like BILLA (cover of cold drink bottel), CHHAPO (prints of match boxes)/ PHOTO (small pics of Bollywood hero), GABBI DAV – LAKHOTI (marbles throwing to specific undulation) & TOPS. There are considered as routine games.
  • Some seasonal games like LANGHASIYA (I don’t know how to describe this game in English) was the popular game during Kite Flying days. It played with relevant song ” AAVI JAO, FAVI JAO, LANGHASIYA LADAVI JAO”. Winner keep bunch of LANGHASIYA with him to be played on another day.
  • Other seasonal games consist of AAISH – PAISH/ THAPPO (Hide & Seek), which was always popular games among elders as well during summer vacation. It was being played in night hours mostly. Ludo, Snakes & Ladders, Business, Kodi, Carom, Kuka, Playing cards (2 – 3 – 5/ Greem/ Gaddha Chor/ Dhagla Baji/ and much more) were games usually played in sunny hours during summer vacation.

Let me checkout events specific to BHOIWADA NI POL.  I usually answer that my native is Ahmedabad, when I am questioned. It also stands correct, since I born, brought up & studied at Ahmedabad by staying with BA. My residential address was used to be as below before two decades ………………….

Add : Tejas Joshi, C/O Ramaben Bhenatrai Vyas, Dosla dada no Khancho, Bhoiwada ni pol, Opposite Jakkariya Masjid, Rilief road, Kalupur, 380001.

  • Bhoiwada Ni POL is centrally located, from where every things are reachable. Kalupur Railway Station/ Geeta Mandir/ Kalupur Poice Station/ Kankariya Lake/ Lal Darwaja/ Bhadra/ Fernandez Bridge/ Manek Chowk are away by walking distance.
  • We all cousin were usually make plan to stay at POL during vacation. Both mama ensure that we enjoy movie at Rupam cinema & Pav Bhai at food street of Manek Chowk. Having Ice cubes & chilled water from Fridge was one of motivational factory for me. Lots of Pillow & Cotton mattress were used to play games by all cousins.

Old POL house with typical Interior (Lots of photos on wall)

Old POL house with typical Interior (Lots of photos on wall)

  • I used to spend most of my time in POL and hardly staying at home. Leaving home early in the morning & coming back only for food was routine. Even, I used to come very late night after completing all games.
  • I always find some body to play at any point of time, when I entered in POL. This happens with most of all children. Generally, Nobody was interested in study, even though knowing that studying would be helping to grow in future. I never heard anybody in group getting good numbers in exams. I hardly obtained passing marks in 8th/ 9th std. Once, I also got passing marks with grace of class teacher (confessing this first time, till date never shared this to anyone)
  • I still remember, I used to find out specific alphabets/ characters in English book rather than reading it carefully during reading vacation. I used to pass time until playing time.
  • New High School was boys school and that had created a anxiety to know girls. We were continuously searing to Prakash Girls School while going and coming back from school.
  • We used to walk to go to school. School was almost 2 Km far from residence but It was always a fun in walking. Specially, we used to stand for few minutes at CALICO-DOM to see Movie posters put on huge wall.
  • I watched Maine Pyar Kiya (MPK) more than 25 times in Rupam cinema. Rupam was very closer to school. Sometimes bunked in school to watch movie.
  • We used to perform Garba only in POL  We wait for that specific day of BIG GARBA, when whole POL perform Garba together. Mr Bhagat used to sing for this day, which was USP of the day. A specific group was performing Garba by lifting their legs in air together to create an attraction among viewers. After completing POL garba, we used to visit Mamunayak Ni POL

Effective use of Court yard during Cousin's Janoi celebration

Effective use of Court yard during Cousin’s Janoi celebration

  • One of the most important event of the POL ,which every member used to wait is a SRAVAN month for celebrating pooja of Dosla Dada & Gopnath Dada. SRAVAN  was month of celebration, regathering, spiritual socializing and much more. Brahmins were performing pooja with traditional dress. I used to ware DHOTI & attending pooja. My focus was to have more PRASAD in standing priority queue.
  • 9th day of Gujarati calendar is the day for bigger celebration. We used to celebrate the event like a marriage ceremony.Dosla Dada &Gopnath Dada enjoys their journey in main streetsofKalupur. They always accompanied by their followers, devotes, friends, relatives, musical bands and the people from the other POL as well. We used to call it “Varghodo”.

    Dosla Dada & Gopnath Dada

    Dosla Dada & Gopnath Dada

  • I had POL friends, Falgun Surti (Falgun), Manish Zaveri (Maniyo), Nrupesh Oza (Nariyo), Kashyap Bhatt (Jaidyo), Kalapi Bhatt (Pintoo),  Kaliyo, Pistol, Laliyo, Viral, Atri, Samir, Nieeraj Bhatt (Nariyo), Paritosh, Apurva Ghoda, Keyur Ghoda and my self Tejas (montu). These are actual names with pet names of friends but generally nobody knows each other with their actual name until all get departed. Calling friends with their pet name with typical tone was a general trend, which demonstrate love & affection with each other.
  • Kanku Ba, Gajra Ba, Sharda Ba, Bhikhi Ben, Bhanu Ben are names, which are still remembered even after two decades. They used to get connect with BA in leisure.
  •  My grandfather possessed a KHADKI consisting approximate 10 apartments. Few of them were rented to ensure that facility get maintained & earn few money out of it. But, unfortunately there were only two toilets which had to be shared among 30 occupants. Morning was so busy in competing with each other to use toilet first. Few members had changed their schedule to enjoy longer time in toilet.
  • Similarly, two Taps were available to fill water for all family members. One hr in morning & 1 hr in evening, AMC used to cater water for over all use. Needless to say, taps were located far away.
  • Life during riots were really panic, but still POL members used to enjoy. POL members divided their duty for day hours & night hours to ensure that POL is secure during riots. Some times, POl get closed due to curfew more than six months in 1985 due to riots.Schools were shut for these times & students get passed with numbers equivalent to their roll no. We also saw riots of a large scale in 1980, 1982, 1990-1991- 1992. In still remember riots of 1990-91-92.
  • Communal riots were so scary since we were sharing common walls with Muslim family of another POL. But fortunately, there were good. We had even faced Acid Bulbs attack in our courtyards. Frequent riots had made everybody’s life miserable.All were aiming for happy life without such communal riots. There was always a sense of fear in everybody’s mind while walking towards Kalupr Tower and surroundings. Slowly slowly, occupants started migrating to western part of Ahmedabad by leaving Walled area with hard heart. We were also one of them.
  • We shifted to Pragati Nagar in March 1992 to our new Address. New Address was as below, where I was residing with my grand mother.  This address is also became a history just few days back. But memories are still alive. Let us accept that change as change is a  universal law, since we are part of that.

Add : Tejas Joshi, C/O Ramaben Bhenatrai Vyas, M – 10/55, Opposite Tubewell station, Pragati Nagar Flats, Naranpura, Ahmedabad – 380013.

All tenants of Bhoiwada Ni Pol shifted to far corners of Ahmedabad but their memories are kept lock, which they pamper at their leisure. All used to meet once in a year on 9th day of Savan month to perform Pooja of Dosla Dada & Gopnath Dada. After pooja time, they drive in to deep sea of their sweet/ good/  bad memories with tears in their eyes. I could see that during the event, I attended since 2010.

Some body further helped in posting live images of Bhoiwada Ni Pole on YouTube. I take an opportunity to post that on my blog without permission…. Enjoy video & drive back your journey to old decades……

Shree Dosla Dada & Gopnath Dada Old Video (1986). Click below links.

Part 1 –  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xG6QvBF5a7g

Part 2 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5QXdlncXFIo

Part 3 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTUx_T-9bIc

Part 4 – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMDVFDrMz1k

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AMIT sandilya

Title of the blog, it self provoke to ask a question for presenting “”AMIT”‘ in capital blocks and “‘sandliya'” in small letters. Let me answer it first before I start drafting blog.

I believe in CLASS ideology & not CAST ideology. My cast is always kept on second preference with compare to my class. “‘CLASS”‘ is a terminology, which can be argued widely by individuals & never get concluded. I never found a correct synonymous of word ‘”CLASS”'”. Some body may describe it nicely, but I am not a capable to do it diplomatically.

Post Gujarat Earthquake, I started working with one of engineering consultancy firm at Bhuj in 2001. I was single & enjoying bachelorhood. Company had provided bachelor accommodation far away from Bhuj city. Those days were really very scary, since we were experiencing ample of after shocks as a routine of the day and that had made our life miserable. We were always in positions to run  to save our lives. But there were no option but to live with circumstances to earn money and get more professional experience. Golden era of CIVIL ENGINEERING started from 2001.

A group consisting 15 to 20 civil engineers/ architects shifted from Delhi to work on Gujarat Reconstruction/ Rehabilitation Project. Few of us joined from Ahmedabad as well. Almost all engineers were singles & seeking their soul mates/ girl friends (except few, who were missing their girl friends/ wives in Delhi). 

An old man praying for early rehabilitation of his home......

An old man praying for early rehabilitation of his home……..@ LODAI village 

I come across an individual completed his Post Graduation passed out from NICMAR, Pune. I was sharing room with other two boys (having size of 12 ft x 10 ft ), and he was one of them. We had a great time together since, we could see commonness in our thoughts. We had to travel more than 300 Km a day to various construction sites located in Kutchh district to built social structures like Hospital/ Schools/ Baby care centers. While travelling, we used to talk on various subjects where we had common opinions. I was highly fascinated by his qualification and talks of NICMAR campus, specifically. I had decided to study in NICMAR in 2001 that I did in 2012. (thanks Aventis) We used to listen audio cassette of ASHO (that i was believing in), while travelling to construction sites. After few months, there was a dispute arrived between us on very stupid subject. That dispute converted in a fight and we departed. Our lives changed drastically, since we were satisfying to our golden ego and that never allowed us to talk again.

My self along with AMIT sandilya & ANIL kumar........visiting Vijay Vilas Palace @ Mandvi

My self along with AMIT sandilya & ANIL kumar…@  Vijay Vilas Palace, Mandvi

He was less egoistic than me. He stopped satisfying his ego & finding chance to talk to me. But, I did not even turned up him and said ‘” HELLO”‘ . I could see easily, that he was missing my company as a good friend. He started sending blank SMS, that I never replied and deleted series of SMS. Once he conveyed “”SORRY”‘ in anticipation of my positive response. Still, I was busy in pampering my stupid ego and did not turned up. I still remember the day, that was 14th August 2002 at 9.30 AM. All engineers were on the discussion table to begin with meeting. He suddenly stood up & conveyed his SORRY in front of all, that embarrassed me. I suddenly responded positively & hugged gracefully in interest of taking this friendship on peak. I was happy with surrounding by thrown my ego. Fight ended up on 14th Aug and Friendship ended up in next three days only.

He took an initiative & convenience all colleagues to drive to nearest sea beach MANDVI for one day picnic. Sea beach is a great place for Yoga, Hang out spot in sandy beach under giant series of wind mills. I did not join them and preferred to visit construction site even on Sunday (such holiday get convert in to compensatory off). I gave my costume to him, which He liked the most.

 

MANDVI seac beach

                                             MANDVI sea beach

It was 05.30 PM approximate, when my self along with senior colleagues were  travelling back to Bhuj. My mobile rang, when we entered in to mobile network zone. One of colleague inform us that   ” AMIT IS DEAD, HE IS NO MORE.”” I did not want to believe him and treated that information as a joke. He again called to and informed to senior officer who was travelling with me. We immediately changed route & started travelling towards MANDVI beach. Yes, information was correct and AMIT sandlilya was dead. He dramatically swept away in sea water under high tide and nobody could save him. That one day picnic turned in to a tragedy for all of us.

My mind stopped working and trying to avoid facts/ circumstances. I did not want to believe until I see his body. We reached at MANDVI at late evening & started looking for his body. Other members were busy in registering FIR & other formalities. We spent whole night at sea beach with hope of his arrival. Early in the morning, my self along with other colleagues started walking around sea beach to check out if any dead body is laying. My costume was the hint to identify body, since face was expected to get damaged. Finally we faced fact with hard heart.

 

Trip to DIU in 2001

Trip to DIU in 2001

I could see the whole event in front of my eyes, while writing this blog. This incident thought me a lesson, that I implemented immediately. I started calling all those friends/ relatives/ colleagues, with whom I stopped talking due to some stupid reasons. Life is so small we are born to enjoy it gracefully by keeping personal grudges & ego in locker forever.

I would have been guilt through out the life, If I would not have accepted his proposal to get reunion. God saved me…. ! ! ! …I  remembered him when I was accepting my POST GRADUATION DEGREE CERTIFICATE on the day of convocation at NICMAR Pune.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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believe me ! ! ! ! universe run by good people only …….

Our sixth sense always helps us in identifying good/ bad people around you but still we fail to recognize them very often.

In my new work place, HR is very active & dynamic. They keep sending one story every week, that contain social massage to implement in personal life. We used to call bunch of stories as “‘Life Mantras'”. Recent, I came across one beautiful story as below.

” Once a group of 50 people attending a seminar. Suddenly a speaker stopped and started giving each one a balloon. Each one was asked to write his/ her name on balloon by market pen.Than all balloon collected and put in another room.

 

Now these delegates were let in that room and asked to find a balloon which had their written, within 5 minutes. Everyone was frantically searching for their name. colliding with each other, pushing around others, and there was utter chaos.

At the end of 5 minutes, no one could find their own balloon. Now each one was asked to randomly collect a balloon and give it to the person whose name was written on it.Within minutes, every one had their own balloon.

 

This is exactly happening in our lives. Everyone is frantically looking for happiness all around, not knowing where it is. Our happiness is lies in the happiness of others people. Giving them their happiness, will get our own happiness.

After reading this story, I am sure that this story would help in recognizing good people around me. Instantly, I have had an experience few days back, which connects with this story.

Summer days are always lazy & evenings are always pleasant. Pleasant evenings called for freak out time and introspection as well. Few days back, I started walking out to summarize recent past & talking on recent future. Suddenly, I went to medical shop near by shopping center & purchase medicine & paid to shop keeper. I put my purse on counter rather than putting in my pocket. Generally, I behave so differently, may be absent minded when I am so happy. So I do not try to bring happiness consciously, that helps me in avoiding mistakes.

Another day, I was ready to start my new life. Yes, It was the first day of my new job. I was so exited to meet new people, to celebrate my new profile & also to face new challenges at work place.  But,  I did not know that challenge is just at door step.

I could not find my purse in drawer, even in car drawer and none of the place. I was so worried since, purse was containing few cards & ID proof etc. I could see my excitement flew away with surrounded butterflies. Finally, I became hopeless & started for new job. I started driving on the route, which was used last night to recall visited place. I went to medical shop and asked for my lost purse.

Back of the mind, I decided not to become happy, if I get my purse back to avoid few more mistakes. Luckily, My purse was safe in safe hands only. ( His name is JITU BHAI). He gave my purse back & I extended my thanks without pretending my happiness. I did not bother to check documents or even to count money. I was very much sure that my purse was in safe hands. Last night, He tried to find my contract number in purse to inform about my purse but He could not find any information. I handed over my visiting card to last employer & new cards were still awaited from next employer. This called destiny.

I never watch movie of Salman Khan, even If it is a block buster or crossing 200 Cr. I never liked content/ story/ script of his movie except his few old movies like MPK/ Karan Arjun etc. I used to watch few promo of “JAI HO”on television, I decided to watch movie just to see DAISY SHAH and not SALMAN. “DAISY” had too short role in movie but it has social massage.

JAI HO

 

Another day, I tried to connect movie with JITU Bhai. He helped me it was really great pleasure for me. I immediately went to his shop & clicked his photo as a token of appreciation. I could see happiness on his face loaded with pride & sense of trust. New, I have decided to click images of all such wonderful persons & make an album to publish in public forum, which will make them pride on them selves.

Medical shop owner

Medical shop owner – JITU BHAI

BELIEVE ME ! ! ! …universe only run by good people….otherwise, It could have destroyed long back.

 

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SAN-BAY Colony

Hello Friends , happy Festival months …….. You might have experienced polluted air, while travelling from Bharuch to Surat. Yes, there is place called as Ankleshwar, where you have to stop to inhale deliberately, passing through road or railway. Today, Ankleshwar is considered as highly exploited zone, where soil sub-strata are in contact with polluted water. Let me just revive days before 2004, when I never even dreamed to visit Ankleswhar. I did not have any reason to visit the city, even forcefully. But it was not my destiny. I got job at Ankleshwar & spent 7 years…….It just unbelievable…

I was working at Bhuj for Gujarat Earthquake Reconstruction Project as a Construction Consultant to built various public buildings. I had to visit various places in North Kutchh (adjutant to white ran), where mobiles are not working. I still remember that day (somewhere in Dec 2003), my mobile rang at 7.00 PM just after entering to networking zone, while returning back from Khavda. There was call (sweet voice of Ms Vidya) from recruitment consultant seeking my interest to attend interview at Ankeshwar for one of Pharmaceuticals MNC. At a first instance, I refused to attend the interview by referring the location. I did not bother to know about proposal.

Very next day, I again received call from same consultant informing about the job with more detail. I could not disconnect the phone & continued to enjoy sweet voice, since I was not so busy. Finally, I agreed to go for interview. I reached to Ankleshwar on 23 December, 2003. I took auto-rickshaw from Hotel to reach to Factory to appear for an interview. While moving to factory, I got suffocated puked out of window…It was literally very bad experience…. Before appearing an Interview, I decided not to join this job since, I could not fond of the city. I returned to Bhuj to started routine and forgot Ankleshwar visit.

Surprisingly, after two days, I received call from the same company. Surprisingly, I was selected & called for medical. My terms/ condition/ perks were also agreed by company. But still, I could not convinced my self. I again visited Ankleshwar for final interview & medical checkup. I took another route to reach factory. Before end of the day, they took me to housing colony. Colony was occupied by employees of three multinational companies. Just at a first glance, I decided to join the company. I also got accommodation in the colony……. YES, those were wonderful days with colony family & friends………

 

I do have lot of memories from this housing colony, where my kids mold their childhood memories by riding all rides with friends & colony garden spreaded over 1 acre of land………How can I forget Lot many memories……. It was Heochst colony, which turned to SAN-BAY colony………Wonderful memories are drawn out below………

  • EVERY BODY  WAIT FOR 31st DEC CELEBRATION FOR GRAND GET TO GATHER……
  • HOLI IS GRAND MASTI WITH DHOL/ NAGARA/ MUD/ WATER/ KIRAD BRANDED SHAYRI …& MUCH MORE….
  • HOLI BREAK FAST/ LUNCH/ DINNER ALWAYS A DAY OF LADIES, WHEN READY MADE FOOD GET AVAILABLE IN GARDEN WITH LOTS GOSSIPS………………HOUSIE GAP HOSTED BY JADEJA IS FOREVER REMEMBERED……..WHAT’S SAY….
  • IT WAS SO KIND, WHEN PATEL BHAI (electrician) SPENT HIS FESTIVAL DAYS AT OUR COLONY TO SERVE US BETTER…….. JUST LEAVING HIS FAMILY .
  • THAT WOULD BE GREAT, IF OTHER COLONY MEMBERS ADD THEIR MEMORIES TO MAKE THIS LIST BIG…BIGGER ….BIGGEST WITH LOTS OF SWEET MEMORIES…….

Medha enjoying slides

Medha enjoying slides

Meha Enjoying Slides...

Meha Enjoying Slides...

Colony Kids performing their roles.......

Colony Kids performing their roles…….

 

Mehadha as PUNDIT...

Mehadha as PUNDIT…

  LADIES CRICKET...WINNING TEAM........  

Ladies Cricket Team

Ladies Cricket with background commentary by Keyur Desai.

                              

 

 CELEBRATION OF 26TH JAN.........
CELEBRATION OF 26TH JAN………

   

COLONY KIDS.....MY GUEST.......

COLONY KIDS…..MY GUEST…….

COLONY GARDENS ....BEST THAN CORPORATION GARDEN.......... MEHADHA ENJOYING FOOT BALL @ COLONY MEHADHA enjoying football @ SAN-BAY colony 

GENEROUS MEHTAJI …………..

IT IS ALWAYS A GRACEFUL, WHEN RAVAL SIR STARTS GRABA DAYS WITH HIS PRAY….

IMG_0007

MY PROJECT “DEVELOPMENT OF KIDS KRIDANGAN” DEVELOPED FROM WASTE RECYCLING OF INDUSTRIAL SCRAP…………..Thanks to CN DESAI & other TEAM members.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Childood friends, ……unforgettable YANA & HONEY …………

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Being Hajariprasad !!!!!

DIL movie was released in 1990, in which Anupam Kher played a character of miser. His name was ”HAZARIPRASAD”. We used to tease someone as miser since his name was Hazariprasad. He started hatting his name since it is compared with movie character miser. For last two weeks, I don’t hesitate to connect with this name since there is a strong reason behind it. Recently, i have completed 1000 BKm (HAZAR) cycling event successfully in 74 hours and  I am so much proud for this achievement. This proves that people get recognized for their action and not for their names.

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Someone quoted this name in Cyclone group while group chat and I grab that as Title of my blog.

I strongly believe that cycling is not just a sports. It is a broad ”philosophy” and ”way of life”. It has larger connection with our routine life. There are much more learning and realization, if we really observe and notice our surroundings while cycling.

I realized that goal setting always matters. I observed that I put efforts based on goal I set for my self. I tired at 175 km while riding BRM 200 and 930 while riding 1000 Km. In both distance, everything was common except the goal. Even, I would have achieved successfully, If I would have set much larger goal. Mindset is the most important in achieving goal, however physical fitness is equally essential in this case.

It was much beyond what I did till now. Yeah, this was longest ride of my cycling career and final stepping stone to the ultimate goal of qualifying for the world’s largest cycling ride to be held in Paris in August 2019. The ride from Ahmedabad to Beawar to Ahmedabad was organized by Cyclone Cycling Club having seven checkpoints on the way, which the riders were supposed to cross within stipulated time duration.  I rode 350 Km on first day, 300 Km on second day and 350 Km on last day. Out of 18 riders, we 14 completed ride within cut off time.

I always look for strategic ideas being in to creative workplace, where people often ask me from where I get ideas. Now let me reveal the secret.  I make a list of  critical subjects and ongoing issue and schedule them in structured way to generate ideas before going on long distance cycling. When we connect mentally with the moving objects passing through roads constantly will switch attention from one view to another. This happens by mind stimulation and that process keep my mind continuesly on the job to generate and transform many ideas by connecting various unstructured dots. I record all ideas by voice recording on my mobile and document them in office.

Historically, Karva Chauth was celebrated as a prayer for the long life of soldiers in the war, and by extension today refers to the long life of a married husband. On Karva Chauth women, especially in North India, who are married fast from sunrise to moonrise for the safety and longevity of their husbands. They break their fast after moon rise after seeing their husbands. My wife had similar fast and unfortunately I was not presence there. She had to break her fast seeing me on WhatsApp video, since I was on cycling event. This was the perfect combination of Values, Sports and Technology. I captured that memory, since I hardly find such  moments in life.

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Perfect combination of Values, Sports and Technology

I earned two times Super Randonneur (SR) title during Cycling year 2017 -18 (Nov – Oct) by completing 200 Km, 300 Km, 400 Km and 600 Km distance. I could see high probabilities in completing 1K BRM since I experienced all type of terrain, route and weather through out the year. I was mentally ready and bit confident to face any unforeseen  challenges. I read many articles on sleep management since it was the major concern for me. BRM never can be easy and every BRM has its own challenges.

Super Randonneur – 2

The journey was real test for endurance and determination. It was not only the exhaustion of sleep deprivation I had to battle but also experienced hallucination in last 100 Km. It was difficult to awake after crossing Mehsana since, I did not sleep more than two hours in  last two days. I decided to break every 10 Km riding to re-energies. Biggest task was to cycle from Chhatral to Adalaj by crossing approximate 15 over bridges. Huge frustration and irritation took place looking all bridges i had to cross after cycling 960 Km in dark nights. My mind started finding out the reason to construct these bridges and to check weather they really add the value in improving commuter’s lifestyle.

Super Randonneur – 1

I should never forget to extend my gratitude to people around me in motivating and supporting to achieve this milestone. Mission Health Gym – Motera played vital role in increasing my core strength by training me scientifically. Shaili was always there to guide post-ride and pre-ride diet to retain energy. Unforgettable family support was the prime reason in moving towards the goal.

This is the time to rebuild strength, defining strategy and executing one more Super Randonneur series before registering to Paris – Brest- Paris event.

_____________________________________________Beginning of new blog__________________

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