Well, for want of a better title I chose this !
Gajabhuja in Sanskrit means the trunk of an elephant !
So, in short, the title means big/huge fundas !! :-)
23 November 2010
Enna Sattham (What's that sound ??)
It is around 5.00 AM. No light anywhere on the road except for the light from the full moon. It has just stopped raining and the roads are still wet. No traffic on the road. Not a soul. No other noise, except for the sound of your feet pattering away, running, and your breath.
A gentle drizzle starts. Neither too heavy as to obstruct your running, nor too light. Just enough to wash away that sweat that has formed on your brow.
And then, as if on cue, the radio plays this song. What else does one need in life ?
And so I am an ultra-marathoner too. It is rather disappointing that I could not finish within the time I had set myself for (I took around an hour or so extra, primarily due to extreme heat and deficient practice). However, there is always the next year.
The target was to finish the run, as my previous attempt in 2008 had to be aborted. The last 12.5 km took an eternity with agonizing stomach cramps and extreme dehydration. I later found that in spite of eating bananas and oranges at regular intervals, somehow my body got drained of salts. I got sugar and salt from a local tea shop, mixed it in water and gulped them down to drag myself to the finish line. But, the aim was clear. Crawl I will, if I had to, but I was not coming back home without the finisher's medal.
First 12.5km took 80 mins, next 12.5km took around 110 minutes, primarily because I was goading my brother Sathish to continue the run as he started experiencing difficulty in breathing. He later dropped out. The third 12.5 km took 120 minutes. The last 12.5km should have taken 120 minutes, but took around 180 minutes. The original plan before I started was to finish the first 12.5km in 80 minutes, the second in 90 minutes, the third in 110 minutes and the fourth in 120 minutes.
Lessons learnt: 1. Take date fruits or some other eatables. The bananas and oranges that are being provided do not quite make the cut. 2. Take Glucon-D. The lucosade that was being provided sucked big time. 3. Take a cap. The heat was bad, so bad that if I wet my head, it would dry out completely in under 8 minutes. And no, I am not bald !!
Finisher's medal dedicated to the missus (this incidentally is my first full marathon post marriage), who does not mind my continued indulgence in these crazy-ass activities.
No, I am not referring to the song from the band No Doubt, but from someone, who without any iota of doubt whatsoever, is probably the best musician of all time -- Illayaraja.
1983 - Adutha varisu. Almost 30 years hence, this song is still so very stunning and fresh to listen to. Check out the violins, the string arrangement. Oh boy, the goose bumps inducing S.P.Balasubramaniam's voice. When this comes out on the radio on your way to work, you know for sure that your day would also rock.
Oh yes, this movie also had the other super hit song, Aasai nooru vagai, remix of which is still rocking the dance floors all over the world.
The recent spate of kidnapping incidents in TamilNadu is rather unsettling. Firstly, two kids were kidnapped and killed in Coimbatore, and secondly, another kid was kidnapped in Madras, and was released after a ransom was paid.
While this points to a general failure in law and order in the minority government led by an inept and a senile old man (Well, his law minister's nephew is the chief accused in a mass murder case), we shall place that aside for the while, and focus on something that is more important at a larger scale.
What do parents struggle hard for ? To provide for their kids. To provide the best possible comforts. Now, is this struggle worth the tension of leaving your kids with random strangers ? I am not saying that the women of the house must not work, or the men of the house must not work.
When the parents work hard to earn money and further their careers, do they even realize the risk that they are putting their kids to, when they send them to schools with random strangers ?
My argument is simple. If all the money that you earn cannot ensure the safety of your kids, there is no point in earning that money.
In both the kidnapping incidents, if you note carefully, their mothers were not working. There is nothing that prevents those mothers from escorting their kids to and from school.
While the wise men may come back and argue with me, that when the kidnappers want to kidnap someone they will do so, it would be prudent on the part of parents to ensure that they do not leave an opening for the kidnappers to take advantage of.
Heck, I know of sons and daughters of district collectors and other high ranked officials, who sent their children to school just like other parents -- in a government bus, or a van, along with other school children.
When you are a parent are not willing to go that extra yard to ensure your child's safety, this is what will happen. We are not living in a Utopian society, but one in which people who want to make a fast buck exist.
"The true tragedy of a routinely spent life is that its wastefulness
does not become apparent till it is too late." Amitava Ghosh in his book
"Hungry Tide". Code monkey, marathon runner, bicyclist, motor biker & general crazy-ass guy