Archive for the ‘India’ Category

Uncle Sam

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

So after 6 weeks of searching i finally struck gold.

I went to an Indian restaurant in midtown for dinner last night, and as the waiter I approached I analyzed his appearance – dark skin, belt wrapped round one and a half times – so far so good.

Having been burnt many times before, I asked him if he was from India or Bangladesh.

“India Sir”

Game on.

“Where abouts?” I innocently inquired.


He then got 3 months pent up Tamil all at once, complete with head wobbles.

“Thank you, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven,eight, nine, ten, my name is nick, masala dosa, welcome”

His puzzled look turned to a smile and he introduced himself, ” My name is Saravanan – call me Sam”. No Sam, call you Saravanan.

Anyway, made me realise how much I miss India – I’m gonna eat there everyday till I leave.

Sri Lanka

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

Earlier in the year, Austin and I went to Sri Lanka. We only had a few days, most of which I spent attempting to kite surf, but hopefully I will get a chance to see more of the country.

In my ignorance I didn’t know that Sri Lanka is predominantly a Buddhist country, but below are some photos of the Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple.







Happy Birthday to me.

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

Great card Dave 🙂


Monday, July 26th, 2010

Last week – with rather short notice – I was asked to go to the USA. After a few days in New York we headed to Milwaukee where we learned there was a Tornado warning.

I hadn’t really thought the implications of this through – and it was only in the morning when we saw the devastation of the storm that we realised leaving Milwaukee could be a problem.

The whole airport was deep in water and closed till late in the afternoon when they managed to drain the water.







Cheryl Cole

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

I havent had any antimalarial drugs in the last 18 months, I do sleep under a net but still find myself being bitten a lot (probably because I dont put repellent on)

Unfortunately my house mate has caught Malaria – hopefully it wont be too severe and he will recover soon.


Waka waka eh eh - This times malaria. . .


Thursday, July 8th, 2010

There have been quite a few sunrises that I have woken up early to see (ahem) but this was by far the best over the last 18 months.


Everybody Loves the Sunshine !


Every Little Helps . .

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

There is a lot of litter in India – particularly plastic carrier bags and plastic bottles.

So, it was nice to see my local supermarket had got some eco friendly bags – especially as they look so similar to a UK supermarkets version.


Every Little Helps


Saturday, June 12th, 2010

Yes, i find that funny.


Saturday, June 12th, 2010

World cup fever is gripping Chennai (ahem).

The problem we face is that bars in Chennai:

  1. Close at 11pm
  2. Are couples only
  3. Probably wont show football anyway.

The solution:

Build a screen in the garden, run an 80m cable from the satellite dish and watch it at home.


All hail Jumbotron !


Build it .. and they will come.

Possibly slightly arrogant

Friday, June 11th, 2010

But still funny as f&*$

The Great Leaders Birthday

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

The most senior politician, the Chief Minister, M Karunanidhi has created a cult of personality. The irony  that his sons name is ‘Stalin’ is probably lost on the masses.

Last week was The Great Leaders Birthday and a whopping £25,000 was spent on giant posters and flags throughout the city that wouldn’t look out of place in Pyongyang.

My favorite poster depicted his bald head as a pearl in an oyster shell. Fallon, Ogilvy, Saatchi – you’ve got nothing on this !

Oyster Catcher

Oyster Catcher


Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

Shopping Western style is fairly limited in Chennai – so I was pleased to spot “London Shopping Festival” was coming to town – with a replica of London bridge !

As we wandered around – clearly the only Londoners in a 4 mile radius -  I started to wonder what the London connection was exactly. And as nice as the replica “London Bridge” was – a quick search on google would have revealed it was in fact Tower Bridge.

London Shopping

London Shopping Festival

Austin Towers

Austin Towers

Summer Olympics

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Summer is here again – and its back to scorchio – 38 degrees and rising.

My new house mate Austin has moved in, so instead of me wasting the day on my own resuing insects from the pool – we decided to get sporty.

First event – Lilo race

Second event – Surf in the pool

Third event – Kite surf.

Now, bearing in mind that being Western we attract a lot of stares in the street from locals, we knew that taking a 19 foot kite onto the beach was going to be an Indian magnet – and so it proved to be.

Still, with a crowd of about 70 watching us we were able to launch the kite and Austin was able to skid along the beach. Unfortuntaley the wind dropped so we couldnt try it in the sea, but nevertheless, much fun.

Davio Surfing

If everybody had a ocean . .

nick kite

Lets go fly a kite . .

Sea Surf

something funny...

The Weeds Returns

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

Simon and I were having Dinner so we sent my driver to pick up Dave from the airport with a sign . . .



Shall I buy a moped?

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Sometimes I think about getting a moped – despite the safety of indian roads – at least it would give me a bit more freedom.  I’m used to being able to travel around a city easily, quickly and independently.

And then something always reminds me why i shouldn’t.

We are driving through Goa and a car overtakes us, 2 km later . . .

Car Crash

Independence or Life? Hmmnnn..

I’ve got the power

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

So, last week there was a power outage at the office.

It was such a serious power outage that it made the local TV and newspapers.

Powerful News artcicle

We need more power scotty !!

The biggest tune right now . .

Thursday, February 4th, 2010

All the music you hear in Chennai (and probably India) is from a film. Not some of it – all of it. There’s not a Top 40, no TOTP, just music from films.

Every now and then there is a song that you will not be able to escape – it’s on peoples phones, in their cars or just blaring from houses. The latest one is from Slum Dog Millionaire Composer,  A.R. Rahman and its called Hosanna.

I would say I hear it at least twice a day, every day.

Groundhog Day.


Monday, February 1st, 2010

A mail has been doing the rounds about a rickshaw driver called Samson, who has his own website and has become a bit of a celebrity in Chennai.

His site was made by a BA crew member who had been using him and a Norwegian subsequently donated Samson a laptop.

Now the media have picked up on this and there was an article in The Hindu this weekend, followed by an interview on the radio this morning.

However, I am not in a rush to get a lift as I rarely use rickshaws and have been told that my frivolity when paying raises the prices for other Westerners!

Indian Peoples Front? F&*k Off !!

Saturday, January 30th, 2010

We are the . .

Popular Peoples Front

Peoples front of India - SPLITTERS !!

There’s a rat in me kitchen

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Well, he’s not in the kitchen – he’s in the garden.

I first became aware of him when I came home from work and felt the wind as he galloped past me – it’s not your average sized rat – he’s massive.

I’ve been approaching my porch with my laptop held above my head, ready to swing at him, but he seems to have gone into hiding.

Maybe I should arrange for the snake that fought and killed a cat in my garden last year, to fight the rat – and get Jose Luis Rodriguez to captue the moment!

Pongal 2010 !

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

Pongal is the Tamil new year, the biggest event of the Tamil calendar and therefore I was persuaded to wear traditional Indian clothes for the day.

We celebrated by having Pongal (sweet rice) a game of ‘smash the pot’ blindfolded and a Rangoli competition for the girls.

Dhoti look nice

Dhoti look nice

Vetti Good Team

Vetti Good Team



Train Station Shower

Sunday, December 13th, 2009

It hard to imagine in England, someone (let alone a group of men) whilst waiting for a train, taking advantage of the hoses which clean the trains to have a quick spruce up before their journey begins.

This isn’t a provincial station, its a big station in the city.

Shower - Alfresco !

Shower - Alfresco !

Logo looks familiar

Logo looks familiar


Sunday, December 13th, 2009

Winter has arrived and is dropped to a teeth chattering 25 degrees.

Appropriately, people are wrapping up. I have seen people with jackets, woolly hats and even balaclavas!

I am standing on the train platform, shorts and a t-shirt lapping up the sun, while the man next to me seems to think its scarf o’clock!

Bit chilly?

Bit chilly?

Mumbai photos

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

Photos from Mumbai on Flikr


Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

It seems that everyone who comes to India reads Shantaram – the story of an armed robber who escapes an Australian prison and lives in the slums of Mumbai. The book was such a success that it is now being made into a film, with Johnny Depp as the lead roll.

As we ate in the restaurant which the book centers on, I spotted the author. Unable to resist the temptation, I approached him and got my picture.

Extra scene in the movie needed now I guess  . . .

Gregory David Roberts

Gregory David Roberts