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The Kozhi has crowed*

Posted by on Jul 15, 2011 in Personal | 3 comments

Okay. Public service announcement time.

So tomorrow is my last day in good Calicut. I’ve been dividing my time between Calicut and Bangalore for a while now, but I’m moving for good now.

Over two-odd years I had quiet moments by the sea – watching it as it went through brooding mornings, dazzling sunsets and raging rains. I lived the traveling salesman’s life. I walked through streets, letting old, ancestral-looking houses take me on nostalgia trips. I learnt to cook, tried culinary experiments, and discovered new food and drink. I lived with no furniture and few possessions. In the near-absence of civilization I discovered writing and rediscovered reading.

All along, I was in Bangalore on and off. But Calicut was what I’d long to come back to. The journey was as much a part of the charm of coming back – involving as it did wide empty highways with thick forests, vast valleys and occasional animal company. The solitude of the undistracted 6 hour drive on smooth open roads was a great pick-me-up. There were unexpected possibilities of seeing other parts of Kerala and of getting to write about them.

Calicut really happened because I took a bit of a career-gamble just over two years ago – and figured I’d help run a small business than join a big one. There were occasional troughs, there were unexpected breakthroughs, there was sometimes the relief of recovery and getting back on track. We didn’t become a multi-million dollar company, but we grew way better than I’d ever thought.

As the company stabilized and settled down, it increasingly started to look like it was time to move on. A couple of cool work-prospects popped up. After some agonizing over options, I finally said yes to one of them a few weeks ago.

So, tomorrow will be the last drive back on NH212. As yet, the finality of the departure hasn’t sunk in. It’ll seep in over months and perhaps years, as tiny reminders of Cal cause memories

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(*Title credit: Ramanand on email.)

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On how you can help the Usha School of Athletics.

Posted by on Jun 25, 2011 in Personal | 1 comment

So quite a few of you responded to this article by asking how you can donate to/contact the Usha school of athletics.

I hadnt quite foreseen this much of an interest in contributing to the school(nor had I expected the article to be received so well). Thanks y’all for the pleasant surprise – I’m really glad this might *just* end up working well for the school!

So, here’s some more detail about how you can contribute and be involved with the school.

To donate, write to ushaschool at rediffmail dot com – they’ll then send you a brochure of the school that also has details of how to send in donations. To know more about the school, visit the school’s website: http://ptusha.org .

There’re a couple of ways to help:

a. Donate cash. You can consider:

– Making a one-time donation.

– Donating a certain small amount every month.

– Donating in kind(equipment, supplies, say?).

– Make a corporate/team donation. Everyone from your team/company donates a small amount every month.

b. Get involved as a corporate sponsor. You can sponsor individual athletes’ expenses and travel, or you can support the school’s expenses

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c. Spread the word. Pass on the link to this post(and the article) to people who might care and might be able to donate(on FB, Twitter, email perhaps?). Talk to companies you might know, folks in your office, people in your college – ask if they might be interested in getting involved?

(Dont worry if you’re not able to contribute huge amounts – send what you can – any amount is good.)

I’d like to hear from you as well if you’re getting involved – drop me a line by leaving a comment below, by writing to Shamanth at gmail dot com, or by connecting on Twitter.

I’d really like to see this work out well for the school – please do (at least) spread the word about this.

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Track Two To The Olympics – On The PT Usha School Of Athletics

Posted by on Jun 25, 2011 in Features | 0 comments

Open Magazine, 29 June 2011.

 

(How PT Usha nurtures Olympic dreams at her athletics school).

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The rain train – travelling through Kerala in the monsoon

Posted by on Jan 19, 2011 in Travel Writing | 0 comments

(14 hours and 600km in pouring rain – on spending a day in a train with the South West Monsoons on India’s west coast.)

(This piece appears in the Jan 2011 issue of India Today Travel Plus. There is no direct web link to the piece. This is a part of the special year-end edition – India, the all weather country. It has pieces on each state in India in one of the 4 seasons. This piece is about Kerala in the monsoon.).

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On the ball – world cup watching in North Kerala

Posted by on Jul 2, 2010 in Features | 0 comments


(The soccer world cup as seen from a corner of a foreign field in North Kerala).

(This piece was published in Mint Lounge dated 2 July 2010. Photos by Shaju V Karat).

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