Thursday, December 25, 2008

Sleep sleeping

A lot of people like the Nokia tune. A lot of people set this tune for incoming calls. I hate Nokia tune. I hate the tune whenever I hear it. At that instance, I hate the person who has set the tune for incoming alerts or for messaging alerts. I hate the tune because it was set as my early morning alarm tune. I wake up every morning with a sense of irritation. Like most people, I like to sleep long and hard. Until Nokia tune wakes me up. As days progressed, the irritation I have towards Nokia tune became involuntary.

After a few months, I stopped hearing this tune. Even though the alarm is a few feet away from me. My mind now refuses to accept this tune to be registered. So, my wake up call is not a wake up call anymore, as I do not wake up to the call. The worst began to creep in. I started switching off the alarm as soon as it had started ringing. I wouldn’t even allow it complete one complete tune. All without my knowledge. When I wake up I usually have no knowledge about the alarm. Many people have the habit of talking while sleeping, walking while sleeping, snoring while sleeping. But, I have the worst problem. Sleeping while sleeping. Technically, som-soming!

I was sharing a house with my friend, colleague in Newcastle, UK. It is a decent sized two-bedroom house with a decent sized backyard, a living room, half a kitchen and a quarter bathroom. A couple of girls had to stay with us, so we are pushed to live in a single bedroom. As my friend snores like a drilling machine, we had an agreement that I sleep in the bedroom and he sleeps in the main hall. We also had fixed time schedules that I wake up at twenty past eight, use the bathroom and wake him up at twenty to nine. It worked so well for us. If I wake up on time, of course!

One a winter Friday morning, it was cold, it was dark and it was silent. A perfect time to go deep inside the blanket. Sleeping early in the morning with such atmosphere always gives an orgasmic pleasure lasting for a long time. No ejaculation though. Only satisfaction. And that’s when my alarm sounded. Like hell. With that Nokia tune. My brain was so tuned to handle such situation. It switched the alarm off swiftly. Without telling me what it had done.

I slept and slept and slept. Like a baby. Until half past ten. When I woke up, I was feeling fresh. Like taking a bath in a big waterfalls. I was feeling so fresh that I knew something was wrong. It was bright. The sunrays started falling on my blanket. We never see sunrays in winter. So, theres the difference, I thought. I instantly knew that I overslept. I looked at the watch. It was half ten. Even if I hurry to go to work, it would have been twelve before I reached there. I knew there was no point in putting that effort, as there was no one at office to appreciate it.

After a couple of minutes, when I became normal enough to count two and two, I suddenly thought about my friend who was sleeping in the main hall. I felt that I had let him down by not waking him up on time. I had no idea whether he had anything important at work that day. I freed myself from the blanket, hurried to the hall. The sound of snoring was increasing as I moved, in accordance to the Doppler effect.

I slowly removed his blanket and said, "Dude, I am sorry. Looks like I have over slept and forgot to wake you up"

After a brief moment, he opened half of his right eye, snapped at me and closed his face with the blanket. I had to repeat my actions and my words to get half of his eye open again. This time, he gave a glare with half of his eyes and said, "Don’t I know that it is late?"

"But, do you have anything important at work today?"

"Whatever I am doing at office is as important as the cat's droppings in the backyard"

"Fine, but we have to inform people at work that we will be late, don’t we?"

"Dude, I woke up at nine and found that you were sleeping heavily, so I called the people at work"

"And what did you say?"

"I told them that both of us are sick and wont come to work"

"Sick of what?" I asked.

"Loose motion", He said and went inside the blanket.

I never felt so happy for having such a disease. Ever. I swiftly went back to my bed. The snoring sound subsided as I moved, again in accordance with the Doppler effect.

We slept truly, madly, deeply for a couple more hours and woke up fresher than ever. We then cooked mega meals and ate while watching a movie.

The extra sleep that we got was so unexpected. I do sleep deep into the day during the weekends. It never gave any additional pleasure. The fact that we slept extra hours on a weekday, and that too at a totally unexpected time gave immense pleasure. This day can never be forgotten in life.

Monday, December 15, 2008

True colours

They were all running for life. Literally. Bullets came from all the directions. People who were casually walking only a few seconds before were scurrying to find safe places. People who were scurrying a few seconds ago were lying on the floor covered with blood all over their body. Some lost their lands, some lost their legs, and some lost their loved ones, all in a matter of fraction of seconds. Many of them were preparing to go back home after a tired day. Little did they know that they would not reach the train but would reach heaven.

All the chaos, all the destruction, all the killings were caused by mere two individuals. Blood was flowing like a river all around them and yet they were not satisfied. They wanted more, more of liquid, which was thick and red in colour. Within seconds they took the lives of nearly hundred proud Indians and they still wanted more.

After three days, after nearly 200 killings; after a few proud Indians sacrificed their life for saving the nation and its people; after partially destroying the city's major landmark, the Taj Mahal hotel, they were neutralised by a group of brave commandoes.

We have experienced large number of terror strikes in the last few years. Most of them were suicide attacks or bomb attacks in crowded areas. But, opening fire against innocent people on anyday is unacceptable as most of the Indians now feel that 'Enough is enough' and the government should take action. But a few incidents that happened in the following days irked a lot of people within the country.

India's elite security group, the NSG commandoes are based only in one location. India is a huge country; the number of terror attacks is on the rise. The Mumbai train bombings should have been a wake up call to the government. They should have planned for a disaster recovery in at least the major cities in India. But, did that happen? Does the elite force in India have aircrafts of their own? At least do they have an aircraft, which can carry 200 people? Well, they did. But it was parked in a different location. Also, it can only travel half as fast as a normal aircraft. So, after all the logistical problems, it only took a small matter of 10 hours for the commandoes to reach the troubled location. The worst part is, they were transported to the Taj Mahal hotel in city transport busses instead of taking much faster alternatives.

So, what has the government learned now? I presume its 'nothing' again but I would hope and pray that they have learnt some valueble lessons form this incident. First, the commando forces need to be spread out across the lengths and breaths of the country. Also, the local police forces should be well trained and should be well looked after. A meagre salary and World War I type riffles will not help the cause to fight terrorism. However trained the policemen are, their pistols cannot kill a terrorist with AK 47. The government should learn that. Also, the commandoes should have their own aircrafts and choppers to reach wherever they want to reach on time.

The prime minister gave a speech to the nation the same day. The entire nation was expecting an emotional speech from him. But, his words were hardly understandable; there was no clarity in his speech. Both of words and of thought. When the entire nation is in shock and agony, we expect the leaders to come out and reassure the nation. The UPA government, especially Dr. Manmohan Singh failed to do that. His speech was irritating, rather than soothing, to say the least. He should have rather kept his mouth shut.

Honourable home minister of India, Mr. Shivraj Patil took the moral responsibility for the incident and quit the post. It is much appreciated that he took the moral responsibility. But, it will be highly disappointing if he decides to contest in the next Lok Sabha elections. It doesn’t make any sense, at least to me, to take moral responsibility for such an incident only for a few months.

The next in list to take moral responsibility, or rather forced to, is the Honourable chief minister Mr. Deshmukh. He was not entirely convinced that he should take moral responsibility as he was pointing fingers at BJP leaders that they did not take moral responsibility for similar incidents. But, does that matter under this situation? When will the politicians in our country mature? They just wanted to play the blame game until death. Again, if Mr. Deshmukh decides to contest in the elections next time, it would be highly disappointing.

Also, the bullet proof jacket used by ATS was not proofed for bullets. They acted as a safe passageway for the bullets to hit the targets. Why? Its simple. They are substandard. Mumbai police should have thought 'a second grade bullet proof jacket is second to nothing'. What a shame!

The Indian national congress is clearly struggling with a crisis in leadership. We have a Prime minister who wants to be an economist or Finance minister. Now, we have a home minister who does not want to be a home minister. Party seats are given to leader's kin. Again, lots of issues surrounding it. Clearly, the government should have performed much better during the hours of need.

The ignorance shown by some of the politicians was noting less than a big comedy. The Deputy chief minister Mr. R.R.Patil described the attack as a 'small incident and it keeps happening in big cities like Mumbai'. Mr Patil, I sincerely hope and pray that you should be a victim of such small incident. How can someone call this a 'Small incident'? This is just basic common sense, don’t you think Mr. Patil? How can you be so ignorant of your own people? A resignation and accepting moral responsibility is surely not enough.

While the city is in turmoil, one big name in the recent times has gone fishing. Mr. Raj Thackray, where were you during the attacks? How did MNS allow commandoes from other states to fight for Mumbai? Ideally, instead of 200 commandoes, 200 MNS workers should have been sent in to fight the terrorists. All from Mumbai, of course! Have you learnt your lesson that Mumbai is not ruled by people of Mumbai alone? Have you learnt that Mumbai is a part of India, which contains states like Bihar, MP, etc. If you have not learnt this simple fact, please learn it now. Its simple.

The pick of the lot, of course, is the CPI chief in Kerala, the Honourable Chief minister Mr. Achudanandhan. He has made it clear that he would visit only high profile houses and even dogs wont visit normal places otherwise. But ah!, there is one exception, isn’t it Sir. You do visit every house in every village to ask for votes once in five years, don’t you? His remarks well and truly sums up the quality of several leaders in India. He should be banned from politics just for this ugly remark. But will Mr. Karat do that? Will he risk a few million votes from Kerala? Will he? I don’t think so.

Is there any exception to the list of ugly politicians within the country? Did someone actually visit the crime scene during the crime? Is there anyone in the country who is brave enough to do that? Yes, there is at least one. Mr Narendra Modi, who is on top of the hit list in most of the terrorist group, did visit the scene and assured people that whoever responsible will be brought to justice. He gave the inspiring speech that the Prime Minister failed to do.

In short, the terrorists not only showed the people the true colour of blood, but they also exposed the true colours of our beloved politicians.