Friday, February 25, 2011

Karate Club President !!

I'm really happy about joining Karate in june 2010 and I've been regular to the practice sessions since.
I was able to take to Karate quite easily as I've been playing sports on a regular basis which has ensured that I'm in good shape.
Attending two Gasshuku's (National Karate Camp) has only motivated me to pursue Karate more seriously. The first camp was the Waihi Beach camp where I got to see the Black belt grading event. This was an awesome experience. The guys getting graded were put to very tough tests which tested their physical and mental strength. I realized that you have to work really hard to be able to wear a black belt around your waist.
Apart from that we had very intense and strenuous training sessions, after which I was very satisfied to have been able to come through them.
The second camp was in Wellington, where we camped in Sensei Dave's house (a very kind gesture from him to allow us to stay in his place).
This camp had Sensei Higaonna as the Chief instructor. It was an honour to train the man who is the head of our organization, who at the age of 72 can still perform techniques with great speed and power. The camp had quite a few social outings where it was nice to meet people from other dojo's and make new friends.
The AGM of our club was held last week, and was quite special for me, as I was elected as the club president ! The one big goal I have is to organize a national camp in Auckland sometime next year.

Conquering the Demons

Demon No 1 - Object Oriented Programming (OOP)

For the computer programming challenged people, OOP is just a computer philosophy used to write computer programs.
It has 10 years now since I first wrote computer programs ( 10th std , Basic Programming) and have been writing them throughout my education and my work, but I have always somehow managed to not learn the OOP concepts.
It has always been at the back of my mind, and I think now is the right time to conquer this demon.
Having just completed my Masters and with the prospect of finding a job in SAP ABAP looking bleak, the reason to learning OOP concepts is all the more relevant.

Demon No 2: Toastmasters ! Its a club who meet every week, where members are given the opportunity to give speeches, talk at table topic sessions and participate in other communication building activities. It has been 8 years since I first started started attending toastmasters, which I discontinued after 2 years I think, for the fear of public speaking.
It has always been on mind, and I'm definitely going to start attending toastmaster again, and be able to speak confidently one day !

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Back from the dead

Hi guys,

Before I say anything, it has taken a lot of persuasion from my pal Ashwin, to start writing again. Thanks buddy.

Its been a really long time since I've written anything, and its been pretty eventful since then. I left my country to come to New Zealand to do my Masters in Computer Systems, and it is a totally new world out here in NZ. Met lots of new people, tried skiing, started learning Karate ( my goal is to get a black belt ! ), and have finished my degree with pretty decent grades.

Life in NZ has been pretty good, in terms of the friendly people around, the uni experience, awesome scenery and the excellent infrastructure.

I find it pretty dull here at times, but I guess that is pretty natural for someone coming from India.

Being active in sports has helped me pass time in a useful way.

There are wonderful tennis courts here in Auckland, which the people can use for free.

What has struck me here is that there are more resources and facilities and less number of people to use them. Empty parks, play grounds and tennis courts are a common sight.

Traffic is one thing that is getting onto everyone's nerves here. I strongly feel that if the NZ govt doesn't do something soon enough, they will have severe traffic problems to deal with in the future.

That apart the weather is pretty similar to India only more colder during winter and the sun more piercing.

Another plus point is that I have not experienced racism in any form till date, and hope I never do !

I was a bit apprehensive about racism before coming here, but all my fears have been allayed.

Availability of good vegetarian food is an issue sometimes, but now I've come to accept the fact that food is one of the biggest sacrifices I've had to make by coming to NZ.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

I'm Back Again !

Firstly, I owe it to Ashwin for persuading me for the last year and a half to write something.

Feels good to be writing again. Lots of things have happened since my last post ..

Quit my job.. left to Auckland for higher studies..

And now i'm this beautiful country...with big dreams and high hopes !

I must say that it was a bold decision for me to leave my decent job, family and friends, and to risk entering a venture which is full of uncertainties.

Never the less, hoping for the best.

The experience in this country has been pleasant so far. The locals ( kiwis ) are genuinely friendly. And there's absolutely no sort of Racism or anything on those lines.

The local Maori people are more like Indians in their customs and beliefs.. very warm people.

And finally the University of Auckland..the main purpose of my visit to New Zealand, was a bit of a let down when i first visited it. I was expecting it be more on the lines of the US universities that we see in so many movies, with huge campuses, and a great university life.

That was not to be, my Uni is massive no doubt about it, but it is split into various smaller campuses that house different departments.

Apart from that, its a great university for research, and has some highly qualified profs.

I've just finished my first semester ...

P.S. This incomplete post has been a draft in my account since I started writing it. I am posting it on 26 Feb 2011

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

I'm Back

circa 2/10/09 ( this was when i started writing this post, but never completed it then...hence posting it now )

Sorry for not writing for a long time...

I've been a bit busy with an NGO( Non governtment organization ) that i'm associated with, its called "Aakanksha", meaning "HOPE" in english .

I'll write a bit about Aakanksha.

A bunch of us pals with similar philanthropic interests got together around 6 months back and decided to do something for the underpriviledged, thats how Aakanksha was born.

The group consists of around 15 active members who are mostly software engineers, and other professionals.

The main purpose of our group is to help anybody who needs help !

Every month we identify a place like a poor school, an orphanage or an old age home and conduct an activity there. Our activity mainly consists of spending some time with them and donating something that can be of use to them. And I must say its a very satisfying experience after every such activity.

This month we are having our biggest activity till date, a blood donation camp. This is being conducted on Valentines Day. Hope its a big success, and success meaning a large turn out, and smooth functioning without any mishaps .

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year

Its holiday season, and i'm in front of the laptop doing some research on where to go for the Holidays...though i know its a bit late to do the planning..
Anyways, Wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,
have a great year ahead !

Friday, December 19, 2008

Thank Goodness its Friday !

Its Friday again :)

The days seem to be flying at lightning  pace, fridays seem to be coming much faster than they used while I was in school or college, but i'm not complaining :)

Its an interesting weekend ahead for me, an important cricket match to play, which would decide if I have to travel to Bombay in January or not. And some catching up with friends and relatives to do.. 

There's also a christmas game we're playin in our office, its called secret Santa, so have to pick up some gifts for that. Wonder what i'm going to buy, I remember playing this game as a kid in school.

i'll sign off for now, all you guys out there have a great weekend !

P.S. Excuse me for using the old name - Bombay, but i like it better than Mumbai and that goes for all the other renamed cities too.