Monday, May 28, 2012

Impressed by Germany

I cam back from Frankfurt this week from my third business trip to that city in last one and a half year. And in all 3 trips, I have been mightily impressed by Germany.

The best part of course is all the cars that you get to see there. I was once told that Germans love their cars. They might compromise on a home but would not compromise on their cars. And then there is that superb road network on which you can enjoy the maximum performance of these machines. I have been told many people from across Europe come to Germany only to drive on 'Autobahns' as they are called there.

Second best thing about Germany is the people. One thing common in most big cities of the world is their nonchalant people. But in Germany, I have found people to be mostly friendly.

One big difference that I see in the India and other countries is the working hours. While in India, 10 am is universally a time when office starts, in Germany (and probably in many other countries) the norm is 8-8:30 am. One reason for that could be to maximally utilize sun light during their work hours especially during the winters. This is also the reason for having day light savings time in many countries in West.

Another difference that I saw there is in the portion size of the food served. While that has lot to do with the genetic difference between our race and European race because of which their average build is greater than ours, I have also been told that Germans eat little between their meals unlike in India where we have afternoon tea and evening snacks.

Europe can be difficult for English speakers sometimes. However in Germany, many people, especially in urban centers are very much proficient in English. In Frankfurt where a large percentage of population is those of immigrants I have never faced any language problem. The signs of course are mostly in German but you would always find someone who will translate that for you in English.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Valuing the happiness

Some of the parameters for evaluating a commodity are the importance that it holds for us and the ease or rather difficulty in obtaining it. If that is indeed the case, then does it not make the happiness of a poor more valuable than the happiness of a rich.

The other day, I watched a kid playing on the road side while walking past by a 'Kacchi basti'. I can't recall how he looked like. But I do remember an image of a little boy wearing nothing but shorts, his chest white with mud and many other things. I also remember his laugh while he was running.

And I also remember thinking how similar and different his happiness is with mine. Similarity lies in the state of mind at that moment- carefree, devoid of any other thoughts, living in the moment. And the difference lies in the reason that makes him happy.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

How people pass their time on internet ?

Its been a long time since I last blogged. The desire of writing has mellowed down in the past few months. It is probably a reflection of the fact that I am comfortably settled in this 'job' life. Everything seems to be going smoothly. Too smoothly in fact to bother me to think about other things - which is not necessarily a good thing.

Anyways, the reason I wrote after this long was I was tired of sitting on the internet not knowing what to do. My browser always has some specific 2-3 tabs open. Some of them are either of the 3 news website that I follow: BBC News, The Hindu and CNN-IBN. But the left most is always Gmail. It seems like a kind of OCD - the left most tab always HAS to be gmail. If it isn't, life looks incomplete - seriously !

So, I had almost exhausted most of the news articles. I had checked all the 'updates' on my Facebook account, read few cricket articles on Cricinfo. What else can I do ? Its not a rhetorical question by the way. I would actually like to know how people spend their time on internet. I might be missing on some of the good things out there.