Sunday, 23 December 2012

Tryst with 'Wankhede'

Everything should be experienced once in a lifetime they say .And being An Indian, it is an atrocious crime if you dint like Cricket -1 and 2 – If you dint go see a match Live. I personally never was into this game, but curiosity always kills the mice & ME. So when my office colleagues (All Cricket fanatics) asked me if I would like to come, I complied. The ticket cost a good 1500 bucks (In my head at least 2 tops or 1 bag or 1 shoe equivalent or 3 visits to the Comedy Store).
Speaking about the match, it was the T-20 format against England. The T-20 made me wonder of its transitions across years from the good old Test Matches to the ODI’s and now this .Cricket seems to have adapted well to blend with the Gen Next. I must say if Cricket were to be personified, he would have been an amazing husband adapting to all needs.
The match started at 7 pm and trust me if you have never been for any of these matches, leave at least like by noon (doesn’t matter which area of Mumbai you reside) cause the organizers would have ensured to create some hell for you. We booked our tickets online and so we have to collect our tickets, obviously prior to standing in the queue. Mindlessly, you would expect that the entry to the venue and this ticket collection counter would be in the same area (by that I mean at least 100 – 200 meters distance).  But it isn’t as simple as the Cricket Game in itself. They manage to place it in Cross Maidan which is a good 2 kms away from Marine Line & Gate NO 5 that we were to enter from.  By the time I collected my ticket, I felt like I played a game of Mini- Scotland Yard.
Wankhede Stadium – The name is funny and so are its entrances. A friend said Chinaswamy stadium in Bangalarooo has 18 entrances, then what happened to this one, why just two? Another very pertinent question to the architect .Did you just not like Mumbai or the people here. The miles of line waiting to get in are worse than the lines at the passport offices. (Organizers please fix that soon), i.e.  if you think Cricket will continue to rule, with Sachin ‘No more ‘ in the picture as the ‘ Cricket GOD ‘ chose to retire.
Well, this is just the start. If you do get stuck outside and wish to communicate with anybody inside, forget about it. No chance that Vodafone or Airtel will help you. The Vodafone dog is not permitted inside. But if there is some hope, then it’s the Aircel users .Yes you heard me right. Always keep an Aircel sim handy incase you go there; it may just not let you down.
The sight as you enter is amazing .That view from the fourth level height does look good.  This one thing is worth it undoubtedly. But as time passes, all you need to see is some constant action like hits or wickets. Mind you it is very different from what you see on TV. The view on television is hundred times extrapolated. You catch on every emotion and everything about it seems euphoric. This game was more of the 1-2‘s and seemed less exciting than the test match unfortunately. To feel excited, we did all the screaming we could for Sidhu Paajis Yellow Turban, the Arrogant Dada (Saurav Ganguly) who chose not to wave at us and the flying paper rockets that landed well near the fielders. Also mandatory do’s are the (flag painted on your face , a India jersey with your name on it , annoying whistles and trumpets that blow into peoples ears ) . These factors get you into the groove and perhaps / maybe get you the camera footage.  Or carry a shirtless kid and wave it around. This too manages to give you some camera footage.
If you do read this, you may not see too much of the ‘real’ cricket. .Well honestly there is nothing worth mentioning. If Yuvraj Singh was the only bowler who could do some damage and the other bowlers included Piyush Chawla, Dinda and Ashwin, who were chilling around the boundary line leaving catches, you truly know my plight.
And mind you, hunger will happen and thirst will come on account of the cumbersome exercising you would have done to get in. But don’t you dare get tempted. The samossas will mess your stomach, the cold drinks is just ice water and all this for 50 bucks each. The dominos mini- mini pizza (i.e. size of my palm) is 150 bucks. What will save you this wrath are those waves that keep happening in the stadium. Its simple .All you got to do is get up with hands up and move like the wave .This will keep happening alternately across all segments in the stadium and you should scream.  That sight will fill you up.
Criticism apart, I must say the match got exciting in the last over and we lost at the very last ball which got hit for a six. I would go again, maybe for IPL .The energy levels is possibly more and the experience could be different. The feeling when you catch hold of the sight from the top is certainly ethereal. And all those looking out for a crash course in weight loss, this is more than ideal. Television is good, but stadium once in a blue moon with friends is fabulous.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

'Dainty Lion' with the 'Ferocious BHAT's'

As I look back to those years, I recall all the annual family vacations we have had. And this year was no exception .Every year we put in a lot of thought into deciding our destination, however this year seemed more of an impromptu deal. Gir forests –The Home to Asiatic Lions in Gujarat, were not something I heard of too often, but when I did read about it, I was sure it would translate into an exciting trip. As nature and animal lovers, this seemed like the best option.

As I read a little more about places worthy of checking out, I came across this place called ‘The little Rann of Kutch’. It is supposed to be a smaller replicate version of the actual ‘Rann of Kutch’ in Bhuj, which is artificially created. As we had time constraints, we decided to spend a day here. We took the Duronto Express, which reached Ahmedabad at 6 a.m in the morning. This place as mentioned is located in a village known as ‘Dasada’, 110 kms from the station. On our way, we took a halt to munch on the fresh ‘Fafda’ prepared in the local shop there. Obviously we were looking forward to catching authentic Gujrati food.

The place that we stayed was called the ‘Rann Riders’. It’s a beautiful resort of sorts that transcends you to a very ethnic surrounding .It was indeed a well planned space, with beautiful cottages, loads of greenery, peacocks –ostriches-ducks trotting all over and the occasional camels .The cottage was well equipped inside with a mix of modern and traditional. We were lucky to have a swimming pool right outside our cottage. The food however here was a disappointment as we did not get the authentic Gujarati food that we expected. We got the typical continental stuff as loads of ‘white skin’ frequented this place.

                                                                                         (Outside the cottage: Rann Riders).

                                                               (Loads of these waddling around :pleasure)

 ‘Nomadic’ and ‘Restless’ that my family is, we chose to explore and scout for things to see outside the resort. The nearest thing we could catch hold of was the ‘Sun Temple’, popularly known as the ‘Vav’ in Gujarati i.e. a ‘Well’. This was 45 kms from our resort. At first sight, I knew why it was called the ‘Vav’ or the ‘Wow’ as I call it. It was truly breath-taking and very unique. It was a 30 feet deep well, with hundreds of steps leading down to it. The walk down was full of captivating ‘sculptures’ perhaps made 100’s of years ago. It was a mini adventure walking down and clicking pictures all through was fun. This place was also surrounded with a couple of temples which were adorned with intricate stone work. It reminded me a little of the ‘Dilwara’ temples in Mount Abu. But these were equally magnificent. And all those who thread this path, should certainly make a visit here.


Early next morning, we drove down to the mini ‘Rann of Kutch’. To be very honest our expectations seemed to have been washed down a little. It was a barren land with white sand, filled with ‘Wild Asses’. Yes the name seems atrocious. But that’s exactly what they are called and happens to be rare breed of a ‘horse. They were indeed wild, as they kept fleeing away as we kept approaching them. The only other thing that we saw here was the pretty ‘flamingos’ alongside a lake in there. This place is also filled with salt pans. But that somehow did not add taste to our visit.

The 'Wild Asses'

Our day in Dasada seemed fruitful though, as the resort ‘Rann Riders’ truly seemed like another heaven. From here we drove down to Sasan Gir situated in the district of Junnagad, good 350 kms away. It was a long 5-6 hour drive which was indeed very tiring. We stationed ourselves at ‘The Club Mahindra’ Gir Resorts. This place was pleasant too, but certainly not as well planned as the ‘Rann Riders’.

The next morning we left for what we came for, the Jungle to spot lions. Early morning, apparently is the best time to spot lions as the weather is pleasant, and the probability to spot lions in the morning was always higher. As we entered there were multiple routes where many jeeps dispersed including ours. All of us got restless after driving into the jungle for a couple of kms as we did not spot any. However the guide informed us that the jungle was home to 46,000 deer and 410 lions which raised our hopes of seeing them. Along the way we spotted a lot of deer and peacocks which were in herds, as the guide narrated his zillion experiences with the lions.

As we ventured deeper into the jungle, the guide said he had spotted ‘fresh’ pugmarks. Sheer experience I say. A further drive down translated his words into reality. A lion had just managed to quench his thirst at the lake and walk past us. We clutched our hands and gave a small squeal of excitement. Obviously, as we had never seen it beyond the cage. Being the King of the jungle, it strolled at its own pace, as we trudged in the jeep behind it. But let me tell you this king was in the mood to entertain us. Atleast that’s what we assume. It kept turning behind in the pretext of fiddling with the plants, and posed as we clicked away. This went on for an extensive ‘half an hour’. Finally it chose to budge and walk into the sidelines and into the jungle. But the show wasn’t over .It came close to us with a drift of just 5-6 feet and gave us that ‘loving’ look.  Again that’s what we presume. Perhaps it had other intentions. But that gave us the opportunity to get closer pictures and videos. It then walked away with that grand finishing touch. By now we had a fictional ‘crown’ placed on our heads and that momentary ‘high’. Yes but this was a ‘male lion’ and generally found single unlike their female counterparts which are found in prides.

'The pretence stint'
                                                                'About turn'

After this ethereal experience, there was another one in the offing. That evening we decided to drive down to the Somnath temple. This was 52 kms of drive from GIR. We reached the place about 7p.m in the evening, in time for the Aarti. I must admit though that I got to this place with absolute reluctance as I considered it to be like any other commercial temple. I felt ‘angrier’ when I figured; cameras weren’t permitted in the premises. As the adage goes ‘When you expect the least, the surprise elements are enormous ‘. This temple showcased a movie that happened to be one of a kind. As we seated ourselves in the open space alongside the ‘Indian Ocean’, the movie played. It was special because it was pure lighting effect and sound of ‘magnificent’ voice over. The light effect was strategically placed on different areas of the temple, as the voice over explained the history of the temple. It was a beautiful 45 minute projection, wherein they highlighted the temples inception and how it was destroyed by Mogul emperors multiple times in different eras, purely out of envy and despite that it stands upright today in all its fortitude. As I feel close to the lord Nataraja and his Tandav, the story of this temple touched me even more. In my head I felt the need to perform here sometime in the future.

With that, it was end of another memorable day. The next day we chose to relax and stick indoors with activities like air hockey, carom (In which I surprisingly won), scrabble and some amount of cycling. The things that we perhaps long to do in our daily lives.

The following day happened to be the last day of our trip and I ached to stay back. I gave it a finishing touch by going for a ‘nature walk’ early in the morning. The guide showed us novel birds which we mostly managed to capture with our binoculars. How I wish we saw this in our very own Mumbai.

So this trip turned out to be more exciting than anticipated. If you do plan to make a visit to Gujarat, the places I mentioned are certainly worth it. I have yet to explore more of the state, perhaps in one of the many years to come.

Moolah Spent (For Information).

Rann Riders- Rs 9000 (Stay, 3 meals and the Desert Safari for 4 people for a day).

Desert Safari @ Gir – (Rs 3,000 for a jeep which takes about 3 hours) (Also kindly take your permits well in advance I.e about a month prior. Winter and summer better suited times to spot lions.)

Food @ Club Mahindra – (1k per day per person for breakfast, lunch and dinner).

Travel – Approximately Rs 8.5 /km in a AC Indigo.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Fine He(Art)..!!!

Twelve years ago, I witnessed for the first time, a Nataraj pose and instantly fell in love with it. At that very moment I decided to learn Bharatnayam and pursue it diligently. And today on this Vijaydashmi day, I feel nostalgic as that was the day I entered into the ambit of this stunning fine art.
Every year on this very day, it is customary for all disciples of this art to offer their new learning to the Lord .And as I look back, I feel happy to part of this festivity every year. It has been special to me, as I strongly believe it takes me to the very roots of our Indian culture. Pursuing this art makes me feel truly ‘Indian’.
What makes me appreciate the art even more is how traditionally it is conducted. By traditional I imply ‘wearing our sarees adorned with temple jewellary, the flowers and the ghoongroos. This being followed by ‘puja ‘to the Lord Nataraj’ and taking the blessings of our gurus seeking success with art in the times to come. This is something I say is ‘unique’ to our country and I feel proud to a part of this culture.
Speaking of culture, our country has no dearth of fine art dance forms. However Bharatnatyam allured me the most. It is a mix of nritta, nritya and natyam, a combination of scintillating footwork, mudras and expressions. It is a complete package of beauty and elegance, of course if adorned with grace. This art comprises of various items which is compiled into a Margam. Having said all of that, it is a life long learning experience with endless compositions by stalwarts.
The reason I chose to write this, was I wished to share with you the ethereal experience and facets that are attached to learning our very own art forms. These art forms as we know are purely based out of Ancient India and Hindu mythology. To me they are divine, and the best way to connect to the Almighty .Keeping the art alive is perhaps one of the best gifts we can give to the generations to come. It’s an art we should nurture before it withers away to become ‘History’.

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Mutual Funds – Long term bet?

Mutual funds have earned a reputation that hovers between risky and conservative. It caters to the segment that is skeptical to stocks but still want to take a shot at it. Also it provides a platform, wherein the funds are professionally managed by exposing it to multiple stocks. So it becomes certain that they are not as risky as stocks but they are not as safe as pure debt either.
Another aspect that is generally associated with mutual funds is that, it is a long term investment. What is the definition of long term here, 5-7 years? The perception is that it is a more passive mode of investment; hence consistent check is not a mandate.
After analyzing a certain set of funds, that did not seem necessarily true. I took a sample of funds to justify this notion.
These are the Top 3 Funds of Top 5 AMC’s namely the HDFC, ICICI, Reliance, UTI and Franklin Templeton.

The same set of funds across the span of last 3 years.
This is the CAGR returns that you would get, if you parked in these funds for 5 years. The ICICI Prudential Discovery Fund (G) and UTI MNC Fund (G) have been the best funds with an average of 12 % Annualized returns in 5 years. The average of these funds would have been 8.5 % CAGR Returns.
The same set of funds across the span of last 3 years.

Undoubtedly there has been some consistency in the repetition of top funds in the AMC’s across tenures. However here, the Reliance Equity Opportunities Fund (G) and the HDFC Midcap Opportunities Fund (G) has have given the highest returns i.e 17.08 % and 16.95% respectively. On an average these top funds have given an average of 11.8 % CAGR returns. Certainly that is more than the 5 year tenure as seen above.
Now let’s look at 1 year tenure.

These figures evidently state the returns are higher than the 3 or 5 year tenure. The best performing among the above, the Reliance Equity Opportunities delivered 22.22 % return in the last year and the ICICI Prudential Discovery Fund gave a 21.36 % return. The average in the tenure came to 16.8 %, way higher than even 3 year return.

Further, let’s take a peek at the worst performing funds and their returns in 5 years.

The observation tells us that even in a 5 year span, there was a good possibility of the capital getting eroded with funds like HSBC Unique Opportunities Fund (G) and L & T Contra Fund (G) giving negative returns after five years.

 Moral of the story is:
ü  It is purely a notion that longer the tenure of the fund, the higher the returns. There is a good possibility that the returns dwindle, even with the best of funds. The reason being, the longer the tenure, more the market cycles. Any bearish phase may be detrimental to the equity fund in general, unless you are into the right/ defensive fund.
ü  Pick of fund becomes even more important. As we have seen, the wrong pick of funds puts you into lurch as the years go by.
ü  Mutual funds are not passive mode of investment. It requires consistent monitoring and replacements as and when market cycles change.
After stating whatever I did above, I do accept that there are funds which you should stay invested in for a long tenure. But that quotient will be a very small figure, and tracking that is difficult. Thus reviewing becomes imperative.
                        *** All opinions above are personal and any further debate is welcome ***

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Has the giant woken Yet ?

The bulls seem to be surging consistently and we have seen a couple of gap ups in the index in the last ten days. Nifty managed to cross the psychological barrier of 5600 .The flurry of positive news gushed in with the ECB willing to buy back bonds to the QE3 infusing liquidity .In India, there were pleasant surprises too. The UPA government finally accelerated their reform policies. The delayed, but the well awaited FDI’s in Single, Multi- Retail and Aviation sectors finally got the nod .The diesel prices were hiked by Rs5 and disinvestment in 5 PSU’s were finally implemented to eliminate high CAD issues. These factors seem to have given sufficient boosters to the market to do some tango.
However, the question that surfaces is, whether would you enter the market at such high levels. Clearly it may not make too much of sense to the do the same. The FMCG and Pharma stocks, being the defensive stocks generally do not run along with the bulls. So which are the sectors that you would be able to capitalize in these times?
As we look at the reforms that have recently propelled and the valuations, the Infrastructure sector seems like a decent bet .The commodities like steel and aluminum are at its lowest valuations with very limited import liability. The domestic capacity of these commodities has been expanded, in turn catering to the expanding infrastructure needs of the country. The hike in diesel prices and cutting on subsidies in LPG will enhance margins of the oil companies. Infrastructure related stocks like IRB infrastructure, Power Grid Corporation, SAIL are all looking to rise steadily for some time.
Coming back to investments, how would you deploy funds in the sector? In the Mutual fund arena, there are ample thematic –Infrastructure Funds. Among those, the AIG Infrastructure and SBI PSU Fund seem lucrative, mainly due to the low valuations. These funds have barely seen momentum since the slump in 2008. The stock compilation is true to its theme. Funds like HDFC and ICICI Infrastructure can also be looked into. The deterrent being, it does not seem true to its theme but has heavy weightage on the Banking Sector. This sector is likely to do well with the RBI cutting the CRR rate 25 bps and general positive credit sentiment. The down side of these funds seems minimal.

This graph depicts the CAGR returns of the month August, 2012. The Infrastructure and Banking clearly underperformed in the month. The situation seems to have retraced to some extent. Another good bet is the Media sector Mutual Funds. The Sundaram Entertainment Fund and the Reliance Media Fund may give you some positive returns in the times to come with factors like mandatory digitization and 74 % permit in FDI for broadcasting.
If you like the above or perhaps dislike it too! Please do give me a feedback.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Percepts of a Market Novice

Markets are funny. And I say markets are sadistic too. My mere stint in them for three months has taught me a lot. It has the ability to engulf you, woo you and then discard you like the UPA did to didi. (Haha that was seriously funny though). (In this case I don’t care about the knee jerk reaction but admire the confident stand by the party. Kudos. I say India has finally landed.) .
What I understand is that markets purely work on the mechanism of supply and demand. So the price at what you buy or sell plays a crucial role. But who gets trapped in this mechanism? Yes you and I, who think markets, are soaring, and before you know, it’s all gone. Well let’s face it; we have to be extra cautious backed by consistent expert advice, before we plunge into it.
When I say this I recollect the TV advertisements which feature in stunts. They come with a disclaimer ** Do not try this at home / without an expert .It is dangerous **. I can perfectly correlate the market to the same. I agree when financial advisors claim that equity is the best asset class to get superlative returns as it beats inflation and is devoid of tax and so on. However there lie the clauses attached.
Let me just elaborate with hind-sight. The market crashed in 2008, followed by a massive bull run in 2009. The horizontal stint continued in 2010. 2011, it fell considerably. Until now 2012 seemed dull, if not for the sudden Bull Run. The factors pertinently being the ECB Liquidity move, QE3 and now the UPA reforms. However, when we look back, how many of us would have known the exact points of deflection. Markets are evidently too quick to factor in any news. So the moment you blink, market has reacted and run way ahead. Ok now you wake up, and say I wish to join this marathon run too. You start to accumulate and by the time you realize, you shall be accompanied by bears.
Another prominent dilemma I see that many us would have faced. Buy, when the IPO is launched on a high, and then wait till we reach our graves for the prices to reach those levels again.(Somehow reminds me of Facebook). My observation tells me, that it’s psychological to plunge into the market when it’s at the peak. Everyone is hesitant in the bear zone. But common sense states buy low, sell high. Well I’m guessing we shall all learn that after we get into the ring and get crushed. (Including me at this stage).
Let me further elaborate more on my personal observations;-
-    -When you do invest (especially with bottom- Up) Approach look into the fundamentals backed by the technical’s of the stock .If you don’t understand, ask your expert to give you a review of both .It certainly works best.
-    -Understand sectors. Not all work in your bullish run. The Pharma and FMCG sectors seem to be in a committed relationship with the bears. They are defensive in nature. So they will not make you, your moolah in buoyant markets. Or keep it for a long time frame. Most likely to work. The Infrastructure sector is good ally of the bulls.
-          -Mid-cap and small caps mostly outperform large caps in the Bull Run. On the flipside, they may not work in weak zone. And small caps will get wiped off.
Ok, so if you ask me what does the market say now? I say the bulls are not exhausted yet. There is good scope for the Sensex to hit the 20 K levels. What stocks look good to me? I say Onmobile Global, Shalimar paints, Dish TV, Syndicate Bank, Polaris, Corporation Bank, MT Educare, Dena bank ( Above 105 –Target 125 ) , Motherson Sumi , NRB Bearings .( All on a upside of about 20% ).
So markets are cruel but can be endearing. You can love them and hate them at the same time. But I’m certain it’s difficult to leave them.  So, I say we devour it by upgrading our knowledge and skill sets. Because it’s an exciting place to be!!!
*** Disclaimer: Invest in these stocks at your own risk and if you do book profits, send me some***

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Cast Away

It’s Saturday afternoon and I have nothing concrete to do. I see the contents of my hard-disk .Yes; I’m in the mood to watch a good movie. A friend gave me a couple of new stuff and one of this movie was called ‘Cast Away ‘ .The protagonist was played by ‘Tom Hanks’ and directed by ‘Robert Henrick’. Well I heard it was a classic and decided to watch it.
It began with the protagonist being this employee of Fed Ex who was obsessed with time and wanted to ensure his delivery standards were impeccable. Well yes, fair enough. He was a workaholic and due to which most of his relationships were put on the back burner. Correct, not correct, don’t know? To each his own.
Then comes the day when he was summoned to Malaysia to check on the processes there. As the aircraft was flying over the Pacific Ocean, it suddenly faced a deadly storm .The aircraft succumbed and so did the fed ex employees in it. But fate had a different story for ‘Chuck Nolan ‘(Tom Hanks). He managed to survive with this float and was thrown on a desolate island.
Now begins the real story. No job, no people, just sheer him and the island. In the beginning he’s desperate with several attempts to get help. However that seemed futile. He even tried to kill himself by hanging himself with a rope .But the branch broke, thus another reminder to him that he was meant to live. He accepted his fate and chose to move on. Some Fed-ex packages were sent to the shore. Most of the items inside seemed useless (divorce papers, video tapes, girls dress, volleyball). However, most of these things become useful when there’s absolutely nothing to your aid. As he was dying of hunger he had to make do with whatever was available. He satiated his thirst with coconut water and learnt the art of nailing fishes. To add on to it, he learnt how to make fire purely out of wood and friction. Something that we read only in our history books but never experienced. He also managed to extract his own tooth and became his own dentist. That sight was disgusting as blood gushed out and that pain put him to sleep. Compelling times enforces compelling remedies. The volleyball turned into his best ally, at all times whom he could confide into everything. He called it ‘Wilson’. This is the best part about the movie. The relationship between the man and inanimate object is woven so well .It actually seemed so beautiful. Nature and he merged as one entity. He made weather charts and could forecast what was coming. Something that most us would not be able to comprehend as we are too busy to watch nature closely or we have sabotaged to it to an extensive level.
Four years that he lived there, he craved for his loved ones .Something that he did not value too much with his job .He cherished them now even more. More so, he thought it was about time to take the risk and venture out of the island .Isolation was something he could not deal with anymore. He managed to make a raft with logs tied together .He used the video tapes for it. A plastic plank found on the island was used as a sail. He managed to construct a pretty formidable structure. Made me wonder and understand, that our brain is a beautiful faculty and can be used in the most creative manner when needed .It prompts you when desperation or need glides in. He tied his ‘Wilson ‘securely to the raft as he was his only companion. He managed to sail quite a distance but lost ‘Wilson’ in the journey. Four years had made him tired and weary and so wasn’t alert enough when Wilson moved away. When he woke up to realize it, he was shattered. His emotions were so real ,it made me want to cry too.
Finally, a ship located him and took him back home. Most of them had assumed he was dead. The fed –ex team hosted him a grand welcome back party. But he did not feel ecstatic to be back as his long time girlfriend had married someone else because of his long absence. Her photograph was the sole inspiration for his survival on a lonely island .Coming back and not having her felt void and ruthless. Made him question the very purpose of his existence.
This movie probably dint have the perfect ending, although I loved it thoroughly. It had so much silence unlike the chaotic movies today .But it brought in a lot of meaning .Every emotion was captured so well .His transition due to circumstances was enthralling and kept me captivated throughout. From the first time he eats a ‘raw fish and crab ‘to how conveniently he knives out blood from his palms to create Wilson again.
From what I gather from the movie is, we as human beings feel it’s easy to conquer nature and make it dance to our tunes. But nature will always take its course. The storm brought the protagonist to live like the most primal human being .That’s how perhaps people lived once upon a time until we ushered in technology and probably will live like that again cause nature will have its threshold. Also how important it is to nurture relationships and value it because it’s painful when you get isolated and there’s no love .That the basic most thing in our DNA.
This writer has somehow visualized it perfectly and the director has executed it carefully capturing every nuance of movement and emotion. This movie is certainly an impressionable one and will always be on my ‘all time favorite list’.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

‘Not Phony’

Well writing a blog at this time at night may just seem gibberish. But I seem to have the intense urge to tell you what it’s possibly like to live without a mobile phone for like the last five whole days.
I was a ‘phoneaholic ‘like most people nowadays as my eyes yearned for the sight of the phone every few seconds. I had to reply to every whatsapp message spontaneously. Saying this I recollect a lot of people warning me about my phone addiction and how it could perhaps just disorient me. But that’s obviously something I chose not to take seriously. Then finally life chose to teach me to live without it.
In the beginning when I left my precious thing in the cab I cursed my luck to no extent. Filed an ‘FIR’, checked on the new phone models and the constant ‘feelers’ of me wanting to check on my phone. No focus at work. Felt completely entrapped and compelled to feel recluse .For a day I felt like the wild animal trapped in the cage, nowhere to go. I felt completely isolated and lost cause that was my only access to mobile information. However the more I thought about it, I realized something very essential just happened. Life just asked me to shut up and take that needed break.
 Slowly and gradually it felt nice. It gave me the space and time to introspect and know what’s actually happening in my life. I was so caught in the maze of the phone that I lost out on so much precious time. It gave me the time to read or spend more time with family. It actually helped me eliminate some amount of clutter in the head.
While reminiscing, I recollect my childhood days when we were so technology deprived .However we managed to be more active and connected. I still managed to be way closer to my friends. The relationships were deeper and more meaningful .Today even with the best of technology kids have become more petty , trivial and fragile in their relationships .My conclusion being you don’t necessarily need technology to maintain or have beautiful relationships if the intent behind is positive.
I still don’t have a phone as I write this, however I certainly know it has taught me to be more judicious in the future. However enamored you may be with the recent technology, it is bound to lose its novelty.
Currently I am in a consolidated period, wherein I’m grateful for the loss of my phone .It has taught me how to save up on so many things more precious and valuable. If people did survive once upon a time happily without the luxury of this technology, we too can. Not that I’m against any of it, but the balance usage of it becomes imperative.
Pointers to mull over:-
*mobile phones are a luxury not the dictator of your life*.
*Simplicity today is rare. But I’m positive in times to come it’ll be a more valued entity*.
*Everything is a cycle. What happened in the past is destined to repeat in the future*
(Cause we come from nature and we will merge back with it).
I really hope that you all validate the same and perhaps let me know if you have experienced the same ever.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Markets ,Success and You.

I am a part of the financial markets; at least that’s what I console myself with. And I love it. Not just because it’s glamorous or an opportunity to earn a quick buck, but cause it’s the best teacher. There are days when I’m thrilled and top of this world and there are days I feel like I rather not live. I sway than the worst times in the volatile markets. Markets get affected by every sentiment and emotion and so do I. But the point remains is that worth it. Does any one prefer a volatile market .Not really? (Maybe the derivative guys but mostly not) .So do I want to be that volatile market. Obviously not.
As an investor it is the fundamentally good stocks that people look at .It is the stock that has sustained for years .The main reason being its consistent and sound. It’s a disciplined entity. Its important that you become that stock .That stock which people have cherished over years and made ample money for others. How does that happen? .Its the faculty called ‘mind’ that needs to be trained. It has to be nourished with the right goals with strict discipline. It is something that you need excessive control over.
Letting it trail and dominate can lead you to that downtrend. I have learnt couple of things the hard way and I still will continue to. It is that dedicated ‘focus ‘with absolute ‘planning acumen’ that will give you that boost. The markets highlight the very same thing. The one’s who are disciplined with their timing and have the focus of their targets, are the ones who manage to make some money. (As they say nothing comes free).
Another thing that I was thrown light upon recently was the concept of ’technical analysis’. I do feel lucky that I’m learning from the best guru of ‘technical’s who’s none other than ‘Dr. C.k Narayan .And I’m the happiest cause I get to interact with him daily .The funda of this concept says ‘price is everything’ . It intrigued me highly but slowly and steadily it made a lot of sense. (Read about it if you can). However I correlate this price to a’ character ‘. The price is the character of the stock. It gives you a gist of the stock. Likewise for a person the ‘character’ is most important as it forms the yardstick for the future .Its a gamut of lot of actions .A good character in the long run is likely to gain .That’s nature.
So at this stage, I look at it this way. Can I at the end of my life ‘write a book ‘on something similar to ‘efficient market hypothesis. Life will be like the markets with its ups and down, but you have to be the stock that’s resilient. Life is not perfection; it has to be converted into one. When circumstances are not in your favor, you have to be that ‘Negative beta’ stock which still sways the other way round.
Success is a relative term but it will only be the asset of the few who possess the above.
(Written to motivate you and me.)

Friday, 29 June 2012

Mental Web


It is a deterrent;
A mental calamity;                 
Unknown to few, known to many;
Kills for certainty.
It knows no freedom;
Knows no joy;
You remain in a shell;
And mind is not productively deployed.
Shun the notions;
Kill the tumor;
Usher in fresh air;
And stick to humor.
The worlds massive;
With loads to explore;
Time is precious;
So let’s not waste any more.
Abandon it,
Loathe it;
Cause we have one life to live;
Let that ‘it’ not be ‘FEAR’.