Among the very few regrets that I have is one that I could not get into any of the Indian Armed Forces due to my myopia. I have compensated for it by developing and maintaining very good friendships with some members of our Armed Forces, all of who know my affection and respect for them and what they do for the nation.

Naturally, I love to see movies involving our armed forces and Aiyyary is the latest that I saw yesterday. I had been waiting for its release since January as it got stuck in our Censor Board for some strange reason but, it seems to have been finally cleared and it was released in our theatres last week.

160 minutes of running time passed in a jiffy. One of the most tightly edited movies that I have seen with hardly a scene that was superfluous. Amazing direction and acting backed with some very appropriate music kept viewers glued to their seats and from the reaction of the audience on the way out, it was obvious that without exception, everyone enjoyed the experience.

Like many new Indian films, this too uses actors rather than stars and that single factor combined with excellent direction and dialogue delivery, makes this, for all practical purposes a spy story, a remarkable movie to watch. I am glad that I did not go by some of the reviews that I had read in our press but decided to go by my love for our Armed Forces.

If you get a chance to see it, please do not miss it.


I attended an English play Yayati, last Friday. Pune has a vibrant theatre movement and almost all shows are full house performances. Marathi being the most popular language, followed by Hindi and English. I used to be a regular play goer in the nineties but stopped after 2002 about which I shall write later.

Yayati is a play based on a character in our Epic, Mahabaratha. His story was adapted for the stage by Girish Karnad, one of our noted playwrights many years ago in Kannada, one of our local languages. He was requested to translate this into English to enable a drama troupe based in Bengaluru Jagriti, to stage the play there. Having successfully run there, the troupe brought it to Pune as part of a local drama festival and Manjiree, Ranjan and I went to see it last Friday.

This photograph shows the cast, crew, playwright and the director taken in Bengaluru.  Girish Karnad is the tallest male there.

This one shows  some of the cast on stage after the show in Pune. The gent in the middle of those ladies is another stage and film celebrity, Amol Palekar who had come to see the play.  His wife, screenplay writer Sandhya Gokhale can be seen at the extreme right.

Normally speaking wild horses would not have been able to drag me to see a play in any of our theatres here. I stopped going to see plays as, the seats are inevitably uncomfortable and my replaced/revised hip joints makes it physically uncomfortable for me.

Yayati however was special and despite knowing that I would be uncomfortable, I went to see one of my all time favourite ladies.  She features as the last one on the right in the top photograph and the second from the left in the bottom one. She is Vandana Prabhu, my very talented niece who not only is an accomplished actor but, also directs plays. How could I not attend a play with her acting in it and being staged in Pune?

The play was brilliant and so was Vandana. The entire cast were remarkably professional and their delivery of dialogues and monologues were totally fault free and smooth. I thoroughly enjoyed the show despite the discomfort of the seats.

Water Problems.

My blogger friend Bunc returned to my blog when I posted The Most Dangerous Issue In The World Today? 2 on 1# 8.

He left the following comment there.
“I agree with you Rum. With a warming world and a yet rising population this will become a major issue for some populations – more so even than at present. I made a plea once in a post for us to think of those who struggle to find water and this brought it back to mind. I doubt you would remember it.”
I revisited his post and recommend that my readers do too.

Parting Of Ways.

Blogger Nomad In Cyberspace has a very entertaining post up in his blog.

Like he found, I too found the new phrase “ambitious managed divergence” absolutely fascinating.

I wish that I had thought up this one during the days when I was sacking people. I am sure that the parting of ways would have been much less stressful to both me and the sacked.

Here is another look at that phrase from a journalist’s point of view. I like the take on bureaucracy there!

I hope that Ursula is reading this post. She can find a lot of use for the phrase!

Another gent who is bound to benefit from this phrase is our venerable Shashi Tharoor.

The Most Dangerous Issue In The World Today? 2 on 1# 8.

I think that the most dangerous issue in the world today is the rapidly depleting fresh water resources.

We have just had a major dispute between two states of India being settled by our Supreme Court on the issue of sharing river waters. There are some other states fighting with others for similar reasons and also cases of nations fighting with each other for river water sharing.

You can imagine what the world will be fighting over next when you consider that there will be places on earth where drinking water will not simply be available. If you can’t, I strongly recommend a book that I read a few years ago called THE WATER WARS BY CAMERON STRACHER

I try and save water at every possible occasion. There are a number of ways of doing this as can be learned here as an example.

Shackman has suggested today’s topic for the weekly 2 on 1 blog fest. Please check what he has to say on the same topic.

Money To The Dead!

Some of my readers will remember my post on mail addressed to my late father advising him about his life after superannuation.

A friend who remembered the post has now sent me this photograph. Please click on the image for a larger resolution.

State Bank Of India is one of the world’s largest banks and India’s largest. It is a public sector bank with good reputation for customer service. My late father and I had a joint account there for four years as he trusted them and we never had any problems with them. My dealings with them on the few occasions that I had to go to them were all handled with efficiency and good cheer.

This however is another instance of not applying one’s mind to an important matter.