Friday, June 26, 2009

from Psalm 16

Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup;
you have made my lot secure.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.

I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

dreaming of shillong

I think I teleported in my dreams to Shillong just now. For an event, I had to go back to Shillong. It was so so so real I tell you. Pa picked me up and I was in the car and it was raining. He told me we have to Akho's house first for some gathering. And it was raining so heavily. And I remember leaving Christchurch just a few hours ago. I'd be back there soon. I even wondered how fast technology has made it possible for me to be there in a matter of a few hours from one side of the world to the other.
But it was raining so heavily in Shillong. And I was texting Debbie this exact words, Shillong is so pretty.. its raining so heavily but it is warm. But I hadn't sent it yet. I just held the phone in my hands and watched the dark pines wet with rain and the streets washed and the cemented walls at the side of the road that people scuttered around by ducking for cover.
I kept commenting to myself that Shillong is so beautiful. You know, the sort of realisation that comes on you when you have been away from a place for a while and tend to see that place in a new light. I tried to think of Christchurch and told my father it is even comparable.
Anyway, we drove past All Saints School and I think I saw Amanda who I figured moved from Bajoria to All Saints. I learnt that Suaihiampou and Chun (other cousins) will be at home too and I looked forward to seeing them.
Then when we reached we got out in the rain. I shared the umbrella with Pa. He smelt the same. He didn't talk much as usual. I told him how beautiful Shillong was, haha, I kept thinking about it. It was raining but it was not cold. I had to remind myself that it is summer in Shillong, unlike at the Southern Hemisphere. Then we rounded a bend and came upon a street like Lachaumeire's. It was small and neatly kept. I saw some shops overhung with boxes-signboards like the PCO-STD-ISD ones but it was red (Vodafone? Prophetic, me? haha) But the smell still was the same. Some incense burning and I ran my hands across a maroon gate, letting my fingers strum the bars as I walked past. I thought about how Thiu would respond (still stuck in Korea because I was going to change my facebook status to 'loving Shillong, every bit of it!'). He would be so jealous, of course. Glee.
We entered Akho's house, which i learnt was new. A dog sat at the kennel, his nose popping out of the door. The guard at the entrance let us in.
One of my uncles was there. Rev. G. Gangmei. Mama was there. She was drinking tea or something and I told her, can I have tea too? And she laughed, "its not tea, its a regular medication I am drinking." Oh. I laughed and I sat beside her. I wanted to see home already. And I still saw the shifting world outside and the swaying forms of pines moved by the rain, through the lace curtains that hazed the outside world from that cosy little room.

Then I frikkin woke up.

I thought I was in Shillong when I even woke up because it was so real. And I heard the music I had left playing J'ai Dormi Sous L'eau by Air. Then saw the reflection of the blinds of the window on the wall beside my bed. I checked my phone, no unsent text about the rain and pretty Shillong.

(I normally don't give much thought to my dreams even though they are about Shillong. But this one felt too real.)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

untitled

i hate, detest wrong music with all my heart.

isn't it..

isn't it amazing how a castle built so carefully for a long time
can come crumbling down at a whisper?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Show And Tell

The idea of Show and Tell is to do a 6 minutes talk on any topic under the sun, the condition only being that you have a pictorial help and that the picture stays up for just 20 seconds. Trust me, 20 seconds is not much at all. I didn't have any specific topic but they were all random topics that I might find interesting. Also the idea was for me to stand in front of the white screen and let the projection fall on me so that I become part of the design. That, for me, was the best part.

These photos I uploaded are not in sequence to my presentation. That doesn't matter however, because I didn't follow any line of story and sequence. Almost every slide is independent of each other.

**ze presentacione

Comparison of the Himalayas and the Southern Alps of NZ. I read somewhere that the Himalayas and the Southern Alps of New Zealand are very similar in nature. Both have very unpredictable weather and unexpected upheavals that throw lives of many mountaineers in danger. And both are not heavily commercialised as the European Alps is. Afterthought: maybe I should give serious second thoughts to European Alps remaining as my favourite destination on earth, maybe I already am at the best possible places already, that is the Southern Alps and the Himalayas.
Book Shopping in Calcutta. This remains one of my fondest memories of India. The only regret is that I never really found the ultimate destination in Calcutta where they apparently sold cheap as books on the road sides for very very almost unbelieveably cheap price. But I found some shops that were typically high in quality as of the intellectual society of Calcutta. It was a real experience.
Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon - there is no truth. One of the most influential films I have ever seen, a powerful story of a story of murder and the search for truth. Not only is it a cinematic masterpiece (where, according to the co-director with Akira Kurosawa, the camera [and the cinematography] was the hero of the story) it also carries the strong theme of 'what is truth?'. Five different versions of a murder scene, all correct (so to say) in their own ways, only difference being their perception about it. I was introduced to the idea of perception in human beings with this film and I am convinced that there is no truth. Except One. That we all know of. Divine.
Chanel ad and mystic temples in Varanasi. During my trip to Varanasi, the holiest city and also apparently the oldest in the world, I found this random Asian guy swinging some fire thing on the banks of Ganga. I caught him in photograph hand-held, SLR camera, that took 1/8 shutter speed to capture (hence explaining the slight shake and blur) and caught this strange interesting pattern that looks like a Chanel logo. Talk about irony. Chanel logo on the bank of Ganga in Varanasi.
The beaches. I am not a major fan of the beaches (atleast not until I came to Christchurch) and I have no idea why I put this photo up as a part of this presentation. But then I explained about the plight of the hippies who 'stayed behind while everyone grew up and started their lives, who stayed back snorting away in the beaches'.
Example of Bollywood Pop Art and film poster. This was probably done by some street artist for the films, but now they sell for thousands of dollars. A good example of Indian pop kitsch art. Classic.
Architecture in Bombay, the mix of English and Indian styles. About Bombay this is a beautiful example of a blend of Indian architecture and British architecture. But apparently the designer of the building (the top one) had designed for the entrance of this building to be facing this way out into the sea but was shocked and terrified to realise that the makers and contractors made it face the other way. (So yeah, you're not seeing the entrance in this photo, but if the idea of the architect had worked out, you'd have been) Then there's story that the architect who is English never stepped foot on Indian soil again.
Crazy Indian Railway
Naga food
Naga Chief and Warrior designs
more of those
Shillong Rock Music
Shillong Rains
And Andy Warhol, my favourite artist (liable to change)

Friday, June 5, 2009

from The Cool Hunter (thecoolhunter.com)

May 25 2009

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We first stayed at 
Macakizi - the sexiest pontoon beach club frequented by Istanbul's super-chic A-list jet-setters - a couple of years ago when we were setting up TCH Turkey.

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Now is the perfect time of the year to head back to Macakizi as it gets incredibly hot and busy there when the season really kicks off. Macakizi is the best place to stay in the Bodrum area.

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Located in the village of Turkbuku, half-hour drive from Bodrum, Macakizi is named after proprietor Sahir Erozan’s mother Ayla. Her nickname is Macakizi, the Queen of Spades. Ayla is the originator of the pontoon beach club concept in which you never really touch a beach but instead lounge on terraces carved into the steep hillside.

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Creating a perfect stage for the eye candy coming at you from all sides in the form of immaculately groomed, beautifully tanned and designer-gear-attired bodies, the hotel itself is elegantly down-played. It is concealed by the lush vegetation but the view of the Aegean is ever-present. The architecture is loosely Mediterranean, the rooms are classy, unadorned and sparse.

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Celebrities and other VIPs parade from morning till night in Chanel swimsuits, Pucci sunglasses and William Richardson sarongs. Money and attitude and a penchant for gossip are prevalent, and the whole scene reminded us of a French Vogue shoot live with Steven Meisel shooting.

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The highlight of the visit is always the food: absolutely amazing Turkish cuisine served buffet-style and al fresco. Having said that, now we really need another Macakizi fix! 
- Bill Tikos

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**

R E M I N D   M E    

I   WANT   T O   G O   

T O   I S T A N B U L .   

I T   R O C K S .   S O   I ' V E   H E A R D .

Show and Tell

Somehow Alicia Keys on our tutor's eMac is driving me nuts (in a bad way more than good). I plan to start working on the new project Show And Tell. Oh, this has nothing to do with taking clothes off btw, because I have heard of a game where you, you know, take clothes off and show and tell. No, nothing like that, thankfully. 

The idea is to tell a story (be it anything, anything at all) with pictures on the projector using pictures that stay on for 20 seconds. The challenge is to prepare pictures and presentation that will fit into that 20 seconds as perfectly as possible and let the story flow between the many slides that you show. The pictures could be anything. From drawings to photograph to video.

My options are:
1. Traumatic Journey to Goa and Back Again (of the photographic trip in 2007) when we were plagued from inside and outside of our group by she-men. Trust me it happened!
2. Sirion School and Gabalpur, my imaginative world, and I could give a detailed account of the place and talk as though they were real places;
3. Naga culture? (Don't think so. I hate to do these sort of things, being too patronising)
4. Pick an artist? (Who am I kidding. I get a chance to talk in front of people, and I go showing other people's works off? Remember, I don't like patronising others that way.)
5. Hm.....

Give me time. I will come up with it.

Cheers Mate :)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

creativeblockthatisnotfunnyanymore

have you ever sat before something wanting to be useful and realise that nothing is happening?
have you ever watch your design developing before you, to conclude at last that they suck like heck?
have you ever felt that there is something blocking your mind, something that you want to choke it out but don't know what?

welcome to my life.

(pardon my cheesiness and inability to come up with anything more creative than ripping off simple plan's line. it's my least creative night.)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

wistfully alps

Being distracted in class made me do it. Googled image 'alps'. European Alps one of the most beautiful things on earth. Oh well, all mountains I have seen are beautiful. 

My love affair with the mountains (only snow topped ones, mind you) began when I was a kid reading Heidi set in the Swiss Alps. When I was that age, I wished to be a shepherd strolling along, without worries on the Swiss Alpine mountainside, brushing my toes against mountain flowers (and alpine anemone, a breed of flower that apparently grows on the Alps) and drinking fresh milk and fresh butter/cheese on bread every morning after waking up from the hay bed.

It got reinforced watching the Sound of Music, set in pretty Salzburg, Austria, overlooked by the Alps again. This time I didn't want to grow up in a mansion among 6 other kids and being taught to sing in a horse driven carriage, but I did want to see the tall steeples and stone paved roads.

And again, it got reinforced during my fascination for the Second World War, when all my imagined stories were set in Austria, and victims, a innocent family whose house got burned by the Nazis.

Last, but possibly the most important one, was brought home when Sirion School started and Gabalpur, a small hill station was discovered. This is set in the Himalayas, possibly somewhere close to Mussoorie or Naini Tal and so on. 

So yeah, I have quite lost my point already, but I love mountains, like crazy. 

I will illustrate. I went to Darjeeling and Gangtok (small hill cities in the lower reaches of the Himalayas) and was very gutted because there was mist and fog and mist and fog. But then the two weeks long holiday was made when I saw the Himalayas, (Mt. Kanchengjunga, the third highest peak on earth) one early morning. I saw it only for five minutes or so when the early morning sun rays parted the cloud for that short five minutes. But that five minutes made the whole two weeks journey worth it. Very much. 

It was divine I tell you.

Anyway getting back to today and now. As I said I googled 'alps' and here are some results.

BTW here is an interesting blog I discovered about comparison between the Alps and the Himalayas:

The Alps are beautiful and dramatic, but in quite a different way to the Himalayas. They 'behave' differently, the rock is generally more stable and the snow/ice conditions are different as is the weather. NB a thunderstorm in an alpine valley is not to be missed. The only mountains I know which are "like" the Himalayas are the Southern Alps of New Zealand. They are also much smaller but the weather and conditions are more similar. It is no wonder that one of the first men up Everest was a New Zealander IMHO. 

(What the heck does IMHO even mean?)

Anyway there are more:

 For myself, nothing compares to the Himalayas. I walked part of the Annapurna circuit some years ago and saw Kangenjunga recently - but didn't have enough time to trek unfortunately. Next comes the Southern Alps (NZ) - these are definately NOT beginers mountains, but are well equiped with mountain huts and rescue teams when needed. They are VERY prone to avalanches and rock falls and the hardest work your legs will ever do is carry you across a morraine-covered glacier in this part of the world. They are also reasonably free of the commercialisation prevalent in the French/Swiss Alps, and easy to get to.


Now do you catch my excitement? New Zealand Southern Alps are similar to the Himalayas. Well here are the few pictures from Google Image search for 'Alps':




creative block?

Ok, I feel smack in the centre of a major creative block now. Been trying to work on the promotional campaign for Hanmer Springs Ski Area. Trying is not good enough when after you've sat on it the whole two hours you end up with it going nowhere substantial.

I tried moving on to other projects, even self initiated ones, but then, its not the project. It's my head. Denise our tutor says that this week we will be taking a break from this project and doing something different. "That might help," I commented.

She grinned.

Monday, June 1, 2009

untitled

in a love hate relationship with stereotype.