Weekly Photo Challenge: The Golden Hour

Here are some of my favorites ofΒ The Golden Hour !

A beautiful pattern :)

A beautiful pattern πŸ™‚

A dash of orange !

A dash of orange !

A sunset, a turn, a river & a moment to be captured !

A sunset, a turn, a river & a moment to be captured !

Rising Moon, Setting Sun

Rising Moon, Setting Sun

Wave a goodbye to the setting sun,
To come back again with day of fun,
As it descends & its brightness fades,
The moon and stars shimmer & glaze.

Sun rises again with a bright new day,
Guides & motivates to follow our way,
At noon its too bright due to its power,
So enjoy the grandeur of the golden hour !

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My First Flight Experience

I got an opportunity to visit from Ahmedabad to Bangalore by flight on May 02nd, 2012. This was my first flight experience. My Dad and me reached the airport at 8:30 PM. We got our tickets and then had the security check. Our Spicejet flight SG 345 was scheduled to leave at 9:30 PM. So we had our dinner at the airport itself. The flight was on time and luckily i got the window seat (the child in me was so happy :)).Β  It was a hopping flight with a 30 min break at Pune. So i had double benefit in my first experience πŸ˜€

We were ready and waiting for the take off. Firstly the plane went on the run way till the opposite end and all the while i was feeling as if i am sitting in a bus :D. But finally it took an about-turn and the speed increased exponentially. Within a few seconds we were high, up in the sky. The view was breath-taking. The roads seemed like bright lighted lines, the houses and cars seemed like toys. The actual city looked like a toy model of a city. My ears were humming initially when the plane increased the height, but later on everything was fine.

Time just flew and very soon we landed at Pune. After a 30 min break, the plane again took off. Almost everyone was asleep, but i was so happy and excited that i could not even think of sleeping πŸ™‚ Again there was similar view from the top. Our pilot Mr. Shashidharan was an expert. We reached Bangalore before time at 12:30 AM.

The Bangalore airport is awesome (maybe because the domestic and international airport is common). A bus dropped us till the airport. So may planes were lined up there. Our plane was at 72 numbered stop so you can imagine the view. There was so much rush at the airport that it seemed like a railway station πŸ˜€ I must admit that i am in love with Bangalore at first sight. Even at night the city looked so beautiful and well maintained. It is like heaven for a nature lover like me πŸ™‚ It was so cool and pleasant that unknowingly i fell asleep in the taxi 😦 and missed the night view.

I would also like to add my second flight experience πŸ˜€ since it was a morning flight back from Bangalore to Ahmedabad the next day. I am sure you won’t believe me when i tell you this, “There were soooo many sparrows chirping merrily inside the Bangalore Airport”. Firstly i was shocked and then i was surprised. I am sure that the nearby people must have thought that i had seen the sparrows for the first time πŸ˜€ But i didn’t care :D.

The view while returning back was also very beautiful. Almost all the while (2 hrs.) i was happily looking out of the window (yes! again i got a window seat :)). The rivers and roads seemed like snakes. The green patches were beautiful. Very soon we were at 33000 feet. Even the clouds were below us. I thoroughly enjoyed myself all the while πŸ™‚

Some of the points i thought up above in the sky were –

  • After seeing this view i have an urge to look at the Earth from the space πŸ™‚ I hope i get a chance one day !
  • The feeling of “ME” vanishes and the “EGO” dissolves. From 33000 feet we are not even equivalent to a speck of dust. So even at this great height i was grounded to the Earth πŸ™‚
  • It felt flying like a bird in the sky. I want to try sky-diving now !
  • Importance of time. A 30 hour-long tiring journey by train substituted by a mere 2 hour flight. I saved a lot of time and energy (for my forthcoming exams)
  • Nothing is impossible. If we take up some task and give our best we can get what others say is ‘impossible’. For eg. man can fly like a bird and swim like a fish. An interesting quote related to this – When you do anything new, at first people laugh at you, then they challenge you, then they watch you succeed and then they wish they were like you πŸ˜‰

It was one of the most memorable experience of my life ! Thanks a lot Dad πŸ™‚ In 24 hours i traveled by a car, bus, plane, jeep and auto that day πŸ™‚ Later on the complete journey felt like a dream. I hope i have such dreams recurrently πŸ˜€

14 things to learn from a Kite

14th January is celebrated as the Kite Festival also known as Uttarayan in India. Hundreds of kites are bought and made readyΒ  beforehand for the d-day. One can see innumerable kites of various types soaring high in the sky. This festival is specially celebrated with great pomp and show in Gujarat. Since the break of dawn people start assembling on their terrace and fly kites. The weather is also windy and thus favorable for kite flying. Whole day is spent in flying kites. People have breakfast, lunch and dinner on the terrace itself as no one wants to miss a single moment of fun ! People of all age groups from small children to youth and old can be seen enjoying this festival together.

Every festival has something new to offer from which we can learn a new lesson in life. So i came up with a list of 14 points which we can learn from a kite. Here it goes …

  1. It’s difficult to rise but its easy to fall
    It requires energy and strength to rise. Special efforts are needed to do so. But to fall down is easy. Nothing needs to be done. Gravity does its job well. In the same way we also need to put in some extra efforts to reach a higher level. To go with the crowd or to go along the stream is always easy as it does not require any hard work or extra effort.
  2. A kite needs favorable winds to go higher
    If there is no wind it’s very difficult to fly a kite. It is difficult to rise up in the sky. Similarly even we need help and support of others to reach our goals.
  3. A string is almost invisible but guides the kite
    It’s the string which guides and directs a kite, however it’s almost invisible. Similarly we are constantly guided and motivated by our guides and gurus from the backstage. They play an indispensable role. Just like a kite cannot fly without the string even we will be nowhere without our guides and gurus.
  4. A small tail can maintain the balance of a kite
    Every one sees the kite but forgets the tail. It plays a major role of maintaining the balance of a kite. Similarly even in our life small things affect the journey of life and must be given the required importance.
  5. A kite may get cut
    A kite may get cut by another kite. Similarly sometimes we may be defeated by someone who is better than us. But it’s not something to be ashamed of. We can always learn and imbibe a new lesson from every difficult situation instead of running away from it.
  6. Sometimes birds are injured or killed by a kite
    Numerous birds are injured or killed by the kites. Similarly sometimes our behavior may break someone. Lets try to achieve our goals in such a manner that others are not adversely affected by it. As it is rightly said live and let live. So lets not harm others to achieve our objectives.
  7. A kite can fly irrespective of its color or type
    A kite can fly with same efficiency and reach the same heights irrespective of the color of the kite or of the type of material of which it is made. Similarly every person can achieve their aims and objectives irrespective of their religion, caste or creed. So let’s have a broad outlook and not differentiate people on these petty issues. Each one of us is capable of achieving our goals.
  8. A kite can go on higher and higher
    A kite can go on higher and higher up in the sky. Similarly we can reach unprecedented heights. All that’s required is dedication, hard work and most importantly persistence to reach our goals.
  9. A kite by itself is of no use
    A kite can only be a showpiece by itself. It cannot reach the heights all by itself. A kite is able to move up due to the combination of various factors. And a kite must be aware of it. Similarly we can’t do anything if we have a big ego. It’s always a good team that reaches its destination in the best possible way. Lets convert ‘me’ into ‘we’.
  10. A kite may get struck on trees and poles
    After getting cut a kite may get struck on trees or poles. Similarly in life we may face difficult (not impossible) challenges and get struck. But we must know that it’s not the end. With a little bit of extra effort we can overcome any adversity.
  11. Properly designed kite it able to reach higher more easily
    A kite which is properly designed can reach greater heights with minimum efforts. Similarly if we are prepared to face all the situations with ease in life then we can achieve our goals more easily.
  12. Loosen the string to prevent the kite from getting cut
    The string of the kite is left loose so that it may not get cut by another kite. If the string is tight and tense it breaks more easily. Similarly we need to d-stress ourselves. Stress is a big killer and it prevents us from wholeheartedly enjoying our life and hinders in achieving our goals. So from a kite we can learn to let go in some of the difficult situations in order to avoid getting stressed up.
  13. Kites’ success depends on the flier who flies the kite
    Along with the qualities of a kite the success of a kite also depends on the flier. In our case, we are the kite and God is the flier. So in some cases we may give our 100% efforts for a cause but sometimes the final results depend on luck and God. So lets learn to accept it willingly. Some things may happen as destined. But at the same time it also does not mean that we should stop working to reach our goals.
  14. A kite may not return back to the person it belongs after getting cut
    After getting cut the kite belongs to the person who catches it. It no longer belongs to its previous owner. It’s again ready for a new flight. Similarly after facing a difficult situation we change. We are no more what we used to be. We learn from our mistakes. And finally we are again ready to face new challenges on the path ahead.

I Have Seen

I have seen the rising sun

Which lightens a new dawn.

I have felt a breeze blowing through my hair

Which refreshes the mind, body and soul.

I have seen a shooting star

Which fulfills all the wishes we ask.

I have seen a gurgling creek

Which inspires to follow the path untrodden.

I have seen the lashing rains

Which cleanses our heart.

I have seen the rainbow brightening up the sky

Which unites us all with our differences.

I have seen birds soaring high in the sky

Which rises up to untouched heights.

I have seen the last ray of dusk

Which promises to bring back the rising sun.

Published in the Times Of India dated 22 Oct 2010