Wednesday, October 17, 2018

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The Butterfly Effect and a Blind List


A blind date with the world.
Can the flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in the past set off a trip around the World ?  Continue Reading ...

The Butterfly Effect - A cocktail of Science and History !!!

Blue tailed Bee-eater
Pic Courtesy: Ananda Debnath (Flickr)
This story starts some 200 million years ago, when all the seven continents huddled into one big land mass called Pangaea, the super-continent.

The future was scripted. One Day, a butterfly will flap its wings -  one thing will lead to another and the entire earth will be jolted by severe earthquakes, breaking up the super-continent. The shattered pieces will then slowly drift apart to form the seven continents separated by water as far as the eyes can see.

But at the critical moment Destiny intervened. As the butterfly was about to flap its wings. A bee-eater swooped down and plucked the butterfly off the face of Nature.

The Pangaea didn't break. No one.. not even the bee-eater realized that, on that day a new script was written - 200 millions later "My Trip around the World ".

Pic Courtesy: Kidsmagicworld.Com
 
I don't See Any Borders ... Do You ? 

So the World didn't breakup, there is a new "one world" order in which I am a global Citizen. I am Free and thinking about a exploring the world ... 

Well, what am I thinking about ? Lets start Planning ...

First of All Meet My Crew :
  1. Misbah: aka "Mr. ATM" - Our fat pocketed Finance Expert and financer. Of course, after coming back from the trip, will return him back our share (in Installments).
  2. Afroz: aka"Mr Chef " - Our Food Expert. Everything about Food, snacks and Drinks on the way comes under his jurisdiction.
  3. Me: aka "Mr Navigator"  - If you plan to go on a blind date with the world, I am your man - Loaded with Bond-007 Gadgets. Paper maps, GPS enabled Map books, Gazillion songs on iPod and USB, Binocular, Camera, a whole arsenal of batteries. In short, you will never get lost with me.

 Our Magic Carpet - The Lufthansa Airlines


We booked the Lufthansa's Premium Economy Class. There are lots of benefits associated with long-haul journeys in Premium Economy Class - more space, more baggage, more service, more entertainment. Consequently, we’ll enjoy a relaxed flight to your destination and will be able to head off for some sightseeing as soon as we arrive.

 Why do you Love the World?

The World is a gigantic place with unimaginable number of interesting places to visit. No "One Trip" or maybe No "One Life" is sufficient enough to see all of them. The world is full of surprises - every step you take, every person you meet, every food you taste, every breath you inhale has the potential to amaze you. So why not wear your travel shoes and #SayYesToTheWorld.




Every dot on a world map has a new mystery, a new surprise and a new adventure to be experienced.  So, the best way to filter out places on the map is by choosing a theme.

For this trip we are going to go blind. Yes! we will close our eyes and go exploring the world around us using just the sense of smell. We are going to call it #TheBlindList.


We will go to places around the World, Close our Eyes, take a Deep Breath and let Nature do all the Talking ...
  
Original Pic Courtesy: Mentalfloss.com
#TheBlindList

The 5 Destinations on our Trip:
  1. The Sky Breeze on Indian Mountains.
  2. The Lavender Gardens of England.
  3. The Dragon Fruit in the Canals of Thailand .
  4. The Citrus Jungles of Brazil
  5. The Springs of New Zealand.


The Route was designed taking in mind - 
  1.  It touches all the above 5 Smell Destinations.
  2. It covers all the 7 continents of the present World.
  3. It marks the Symbol of Infinity on the face of Earth.

There are only two Mistakes We can make along the Road to Infinity - Not going all the way and not Starting.

 Sky Breeze on the Indian Mountains:

Pic Courtesy: ShutterStock
Our Journey to Infinity started by trekking the great Indian Mountains. 

We climbed to the peak, outstretched our hands, closed our eyes and took a deep breath...

Amazing !!!  you could feel the cool mountain air ignite a sudden thrust of freshness inside your tired body. 

 Your loose cloths dangling in the wind bless you with The Wings of Freedom. You wish you could crumble to pieces and spread over the Heavenly view.

The Lavender Gardens of England

Pic Courtesy: Express.co.uk
After experiencing the Mountains of India, we set out for the Lavender Gardens of England. 

On the way we came across the Desert roads of the Sahara, crossed the River Nile in Egypt and drove through the Streets of Paris and Rome.

Then we saw the Mesmerizing view of the Lavender Gardens. We walked through miles of Lavender on either sides of the road, with nothing but only the Horizon in front of us. 

The lavender laced aromatic wind tickled all over my face, calmed my erratic nerves and whispered in my ears - "Relax.... " 

You haven't Lived until you drove Cross-country on a car, sticking your Head out of its Sunroof with a big Grin on your Face and had a 'Bug' fly into your mouth.

The Dragon Fruit from The Canals of Thailand
  
After being enthralled by the Magic of Lavender, we set out for the exotic tropical destination of Thailand.

We drove through the coldness of the Siberian Desert, the terror of "Mangolia", the vastness of China and finally reached "The Land of Free - Thailand"
Pic Courtesy: ShutterStock

The Winding canals of Thailand lined with Dragon Fruit were an exotic feast for our senses. 

The scent of a Dragon fruit on your platter will awaken your senses, and leave a Fresh and light tropical impression on your memory-map - The Feeling of Holiday, Romance and Escape.

Ever wonder How a Vacation Smells like ? Yes...... It Smells like this !!!


The Citrus Jungles of Brazil

After Exotic Thailand we turned our compass to Brazil, not for its Soccer but for the "Scent of  its Fresh Citrus Fruits".

On the way we tread through the "Great Silk Route" of ancient World in Kazakhstan, icy terrains of Greenland, the Swamps of Canada and the Cities of America.

Pic Courtesy: ShutterStock
We reached the "Jungles of Eden "  beholding the mighty power of orange draped trees, baiting you like the "Forbidden Fruit".  

Spelled by the sorcery of the swinging pendulums in the wind, we grabbed the forbidden fruit and sniffed...

 The Soft Oriental smell, did wonders on our senses, stimulated awareness and cured chronic fatigue - a much needed revitalization from the long journey.

The Springs of New Zealand

Revitalized... we set out for our final destination of the Trip - New Zealand. We survived the dense equatorial forests of Africa and the biting cold of Antarctica only to be be stunned speechless by the beauty of Nature.
Pic Courtesy: ShutterStock

We stood beside the raging stream of Amrit (nectar of immortality) with moss covered rocks as a light spray of refreshing fresh water knocked goosebumps all over our skin.

Enthralled by the opportunity, the the Heart stopped beating, the Lungs went miser and the charged Ears started recording every burst of Acoustics available.

The trip was an enriching experience... We were thunderstruck, intoxicated all our way back Home. We decided - "We will do this again !!! "
 
The World is a gigantic place with unimaginable number of interesting places to visit. No "One Trip" or maybe No "One Life" is sufficient enough to experience all of them.The more we see the world, the more we fall in love with it! The more we blindly trust it to reveal its incredible beauty wherever we go, unveiling amazing new experiences at every turn. Just follow your heart, create a bucket list, #SayYesToTheWorld and go on a blind date with the world.
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Friday, April 20, 2018

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Studying Abroad and The English Language Test

Study and Work Abroad. Pic by: Southern Connecticut State University

The Dream of every Indian Student

Studying or working abroad and exploring new cultures, lifestyles and countries has always been “The Ultimate Dream” of every student in India. It’s a life changing experience. From enhancing your global network to experiencing a new culture, the benefits to your education and career are innumerable.

The idea of studying or working abroad generally takes shape during the undergraduate years. You are young and the sky is the limit. You might hear a lot or read in newspapers about the ever increasing number of students going abroad to study and work. You might get inclined to believe that the experience must be incredibly easy to facilitate lakhs of Indian students yearly moving abroad. But nothing could be further from the truth. 

The Roadblocks

Planning to studying or work abroad comes with a whole set of challenges. Some of which are quite common and easy to deal with but some might be new and offer unexpected roadblocks along the way. There will be many hurdles that you have to overcome in pursuit of your dream. 

The first and the most important hurdle one faces is deciding which country he wants to study or work? Will he be able to handle the cultural differences? Deciding on the university and getting a scholarship are some of the initial challenges you face.

Do extensive google research.Students or friends with prior experience will make your job lot easier. You will find a lot of good websites and brilliant articles on the web that will help you gain insight into the country, its culture, people and university. Get fully satisfied with you decision before moving forward. 

The next set of hurdles are passport validities, visa applications, country regulation details, university acceptances, accepted English tests and so on. 

English Language Test:


Some visas have English language requirements, which you can meet by providing English language test results. Some of the most widely accepted English language tests are PTE Academic, IELT and TOEFL iBT.

PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) as an English Test option that is widely accepted by a number of universities and countries for studies, immigration and/or work. It is a computer-based language test that offers candidates the fastest, fairest and most flexible way of proving their English language proficiency - #DefinitelyPTE.

About the PTE Academic Test

PTE Academic assesses listening, reading, speaking and writing all, using a computer in a single 3 hour test session. The Test has 3 parts:


Benefits of the Test

Some of the benefits of PTE Academic are:
  • Schedule PTE Academic up to twenty-four hours in advance.
  • Completed in a convenient single three-hour test session.
  • Results are typically available within five business days.
  • Testing globally over 360 days of the year, in over 200 test centers around the world.
  • No bias: The test is scored by computer so it doesn’t matter where test takers come from or what they look like, PTE Academic only tests their English skills.
  • Candidates can send their scores to an unlimited number of institutions without additional fees via their secure online account.

Watch the Pearson Test of English Academic TV commercial




PTE Academic Acceptance | #DefinitelyPTE

PTE Academic is accepted by thousands of organizations worldwide, including prestigious institutions such as Stanford University, Harvard University, and Imperial College London.  It is accepted in Australian, New Zealand, Ireland, UK, USA and Canada universities. It is also accepted by Universities in Europe and Asia delivering courses in English. It is approved by the Australian and New Zealand Governments for all student visa and migration applications.

PTE Preparation Course

Like any test, test takers should prepare by becoming familiar with the test format and learn how to tackle questions correctly. Pearson offers test takers a range of PTE preparation course designed to help maximize their scores online. It includes an interactive test tutorial, videos, tips and a free offline practice test to increase your chances of success. 

PTE Academic scorecard

PTE Academic is scored against the Global Scale of English, a granular scale from 10-90. The PTE Academic Score Report includes the test taker’s overall score, communicative skills scores and enabling skills scores. Below is a sample scorecard report:

Click to Enlarge


How do PTE Academic scores compare to other English tests?

PTE Academic scores range between 10–90 points and align with IELTS and TOEFL iBT as follows:

Note: This score alignment is recommended by PTE Academic. Test takers should check their preferred institutions’ website for score requirements.

Booking a PTE Academic test

Booking for a PTE Academic Test can be done by either by:

  1. Phone Call: Booking hours and telephone numbers for your region can be found on their website.
  2. Online 24x7: Online bookings can be done 24x7 on PearsonPTE booking page



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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

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Pirates of Imagination !

What's every parent's Dream?  

Every parent's dream is to see their child grow up to be happy, healthy and successful. Growing up should not only be about growing of their outer physique but also their inner imagination and creativity.

 Logic will get you from A to B, IMAGINATION will get you everywhere - Albert Einstein.

For a child's true development, Imagination is very vital to be nurtured at an early stage of his childhood. The more the brain is used and exploited during these tender years the higher are the chances of him to be successful in life.

Colgate has come up with a very interesting concept of stimulating the creative areas of a child's brain. Their new Colgate Strong Teeth packs come with interesting sea creatures & some trivia inside them. Kids can cut, play & learn. They are encouraged to weave their own stories around these characters and share them with their parents and friends.

I also happen to get one such pack for my kid. I asked him to follow the instructions given on the pack and come up with some interesting story line based on the characters demonstrated on the pack. Here is what he came up with:

#ColgateMagicalStories: The Pirates Ship
 Once upon a time there lived a Pirate called "Blackbeard". He was famous for being the bravest and best treasure hunter the land has ever seen. His beautiful wife "Sadie" was the love of his life and had deep knowledge of the vast ocean and seas. They made a remarkable pair and had a lot of success in discovering hidden maps and treasures. They had a pet parrot named "Arrow" who can talk like a human and fly like an eagle.

One day they come across an old map of a hidden treasure buried in the shallow waters of  'Deathbay'. The map ran across some treacherous routes spotted with dangerous sea creatures and harsh weather conditions. While any other faint hearted pirate would have abandoned the hunt,  Blackbeard and Sadie had some other ideas. The journey to Deathbay was going to take around one month, but owing to the difficulty of the journey they filled up their ship with supplies worth 3. 

The next day they started their journey. Be it sunshine, rain or high wind they continued sailing nonstop. On the eighth day they reached the land of the Killer Whales. Here lived Orca, the largest member of the dolphin family. With Sadie's help on the telescope, Blackbeard steered cautiously through the killer whales taking care that they don't get frightened and damage the ship. 

On the 22nd day they reached the land of dolphins. They could see the friendly dolphins playing in groups called pods. Blackbeard new that the journey till now was easy ahead lies the area of the deadly stingray, on the middle of which was the treasure guarded by an octopus. Sadie knew the sea well, She knew that dolphins migrate this time of the year to warmer waters. They are also very smart and will be quite helpful in taking them near the treasure which was located on their route to the warm area called 'Paradise land'. They followed one such migrating pods of dolphins and bypassed the land of stingrays through a narrow channel which only the dolphins knew. 

The treasure was guarded by a large octopus. Blackbeard was prepared or this. He brought with him a 'bubble gun'. With its help they would make loud noise and bubbles to scare the octopus away from the treasure. Blackbeard carefully dived into the shallow sea and started the bubble gun. The plan worked. As soon as the octopus ran away Blackbeard quickly loaded all the treasure on the ship. The treasure was huge. Blackbeard and Sadie had another successful treasure hunt.

________________________________-

The story was great. What do you think?  Try to give your kids one such pack of Colgate and see what Story they weave with their imagination...

 

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Friday, June 3, 2016

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Top 3 Reasons to Drive the New Datsun redi-GO

Why anyone buys a Car ?


Cars have become an integral part of our daily urban chorus. The most basic function of any car is to help their owners to perform their travelling needs cost effectively and hassle-free. But what if some car provides something more - Fun, Freedom and Confidence. Wouldn't that be wonderful?

Datsun is introducing the new redi-GO, a zippy and peppy everyday drive filled with Fun, Freedom and Confidence to go further and farther in life.

Why makes Datsun redi-GO special?

There are thousands of varieties of cars plying on the Indian roads. The new generation just doesn't want to be a part of the crowd anymore, they want to be different, they want to stand out. Datsun redi-GO has just the right combination of features to help you build your unique identity on any crowded road.

1. Modern Exterior Design - The Head Turner:

Just look at this Bold and Beautiful exteriors. Don't you feel like taking it out for a spin?
The New Datsun redi-GO

With sharp rise in number of vehicles in cities but not much change in infrastructure has resulted in increasingly crowded roads and traffic jams. Datsun redi-GO's compact and sleek design helps you ooze through traffic and narrow roads of the cities with ease, yet has a robust and aggressive stance to give impressive room and a sporty attitude. A touch of silver gives it a premium appeal. Some of its features like high stance and best in class ground clearance will help you through any city road conditions or weather.

2. Sporty and Classy Interiors - It feels like Home!


Datsun redi-GO - sporty and classy interiors

The Datsun redi-GO has a seating capacity of five along with luggage, so my whole family can enjoy trips to their favourite spot in the city. It has a spacious interiors with modern dashboard layout equipped with digital tachometer, drive computers, audio systems, convenient power windows and super air-conditioning. The sporty fabric inside the Datsun redi-GO provides an energetic feel with premium comfort.


3. Smart and Efficient Performance - 'Kitna Deti Hai?'


Datsun redi-GO has an impressive fuel economy of 25.17 km/L
In India the most important aspect looked in any car is its fuel economy. Datsun redi-GO has an impressive fuel economy of 25.17 km/L which makes it easy on the wallet so we can enjoy longer outdoor hours without having to worry about the next Petrol Station.

The handling looks good with a small turning radius of 4.7 meters which is very useful in narrow, crowded Indian roads. The 799cc i-SAT engine should provide a peppy response with knocking free and smooth performance.


Fun, Freedom and Confidence


A car is all about experiencing the fun of life and the freedom of possibilities. It should give confidence to go further and farther into uncharted territories of the city. What's best to test drive a car like Datsun redi-GO in my fast developing city Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand.

In a place like Ranchi, any car can be grilled to their extreme limits with the best and worst of both worlds. The city is filled with narrow roads with sharp turns and crowded corners. You have roads both as smooth as butter and as rough as the back of a hedgehog. The handling, fuel economy, ground clearance and robustness will be tested to their extremes here. If a car can perform well in Ranchi it can do that anywhere in India.


Booking for Datsun redi-GO are now open. Experience the Fun. Freedom. Confidence. The ultimate Urban Cross - Datsun redi-GO - the capability of a crossover with the convenience of a hatchback.

©All Image Source: Datsun redi-GO website
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Thursday, May 26, 2016

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Photo: Where are all the Sparrows

Where are all the Sparrows!!! (photographed at Ranchi by Shahzad Ashraf)

A Little bird, with plumage brown,
Beside my window flutters down,
A moment chirps its little strain,
Then taps upon my window-pane,
And chirps again, and hops along,
To call my notice to its song;
But I work on, nor heed its lay,
Till, in neglect, it flies away.

Lines By: Paul Laurance Dunber

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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

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Loving a New Day


The road is deserted. The downhill landscape invites your adrenaline to work hard on your bicycle. Reaching full speed you stand up on the paddles and close your eyes to feel the music of air floating through your ears.

You are encapsulated in the Symphony when suddenly you hear your Mom calling
Its  M..O..R..N..I..N..G  ….. Get Up and Get Ready for School”.

MORNING ???      Puzzled and Confused for a moment, before you realize that it was just a dream and in reality you are just staring at your melancholy ceiling fan throwing frozen air at you.

Its Morning” – those were the first words I used to hear every day.  I grew a disliking for these words, often wondering “Why does the stupid sun has to rise so early”? The fact that people considered the rising sun as an artistic wonder of nature, used to burn me to the core. What a propaganda … I see nothing worth feeling enchanted about this ugly bloody sun, who used to break my dreams  and bring me back to face the hard realities of the world.

Time passed … I left school and joined a college away from home. College life was a completely different ballgame altogether. But the mornings used to be the same ugly ones. The only thing that changed was the sweet sound of my mom replaced by the “beep … beep … beep …. beep … beep” melancholy of my alarm clock.

Time went on its course faster and faster every day.  Now I am a professional working in a so and so MNC company. Doing a night shift was never my motivation but here is LIFE - always there to spank you up, from all possible directions.

Well, my day starts when everybody’s ends - not a single soul (except my driver) for over 20 kms to hear me scream or sing.

Being a nocturnal, I am a witness to the many shades of black the sky paints itself, with every passing minute. At dawn you can feel the world changing around you. The first signs come from the skies - all blushing in shiny black, as if it has just applied makeup to meet its long lost love – the Sun.

The shiny black color then gives way to various progressive lighter gray shades. Gradually redness starts to show up in the east. Specks of clouds on the horizon when receives the first rays of the Sun produces an encapsulating aura around them. Gradually the sun peeps from the horizon – all blushing and red with shyness.

Unlike at any other time of the day, you start staring at the red sun just above the horizon and start wondering about its gigantic size and above all the devouring capabilities it possess. Yet it looks so calm, so humble, so pure, concealing all the turmoil within it.

The sight is Awesome …. Its Breathtaking … its Heavenly … 

WOW … Who will not Love it ???

Now I realize – what I had missed all those years of my life, whining about the sun, the mornings and the sunrise.

There is a Sunrise and a Sunset every single day of the week, and most importantly they're absolutely free, so don't miss any of them.


#StartANewLife. Do you recall a time when you took a bold step, and brought about a big change in your own life. Share them below 
-  x  -
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Friday, March 6, 2015

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World is Ugly but isn't it Beautiful ?

Every morning millions of people wake up to a new day. While some get bogged down by the obstacles they encounter others take them as a challenge and built castles out of whatever stones life throws at them.  Winston Churchill rightly said – “A Pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”.

Yes later are the people to be.  They are “The Optimists” - For them the world can be ugly but it's beautiful?

I work in the Middle East, 1000s of kilometers away from my sweet, loving and carefree home. On the contrary each and every day of my work is full of challenges. On a rare good day it’s only the traffic on my way to work that can be a problem. But the most frequent days are the bad days which possess infinite range of permutation of troubles coming through my Boss, my teammates or my clients. To test your endurance level there is “Time” always running fast when you need them the most and moving like a snail towards your vacation date.

The only positive hours that I look forward to during the whole days is the evening time when I come back from my work and call my home to hear the sweet caring voice of my family and friends on the other end. At a snail-pace Hours, days, weeks, Months pass. Slowly but surely your thoughts start filling with negativeness.

Finally my vacation days arrives. It’s feels like the best day of my life. You travel all around the world but return back to your home to find happiness. The first glimpse of your loved ones that you see at the airport will be a pinch on the balloon of negativities and soon it deflates away. The tears of joy in your Mother’s eye, the care and hugs of your Father, the smiles of your brothers are the moments of life to live for.

Few things in the World are more powerful than a positive push, A smile, A word of optimism and hope, A ‘You can do it’ when things are tough. – Richard M. DeVos

All the hardships all the troubles and all the fears that were bundling up for the last few months seem nothings in front of the 'Present'. Seeing all the happiness and love around you feel motivated to work and toil hard so that those beautiful smiles never leave the faces of your loved ones.

Negative events and situations generally affect a limited aspect of your life, are always temporary and more importantly manageable.  You can either accept defeat and suffer or take it as a challenge and wait for them to pass and enjoy the benefits later. The days of suffering may be tough and unbearable but once they are through the sweet fragrance of success and achievement will fill your life. The taste of water is the sweetest to those who are lost in the desert without any water; food tastes good only to those who were hungry. You can truly appreciate and enjoy the good days only when you have suffered through the bad days in life.


What are your moments that fill you with optimism and hope for the future? #Housing #LookupStories

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