Monday, October 3, 2011

Filling the gap...

So I thought that I might as well fill the gap... regarding what happened since the time I went underground up till now. You have probably given up on me anyway. And I have no followers :P The few who follow me, also talk to me in real life... so that is no fun. But what the hell, when did I ever care about who is reading my blog (kidding... kidding...).

But hey, there's all this talk about pictures being worth a thousand words and what not. So, in spite of having being accused of being a "man of words" I shall give this a try. Fill you in with all that has happened in my life since I left blogosphere. I think I owe this blog that much. After all what is the point of it all, if you don't know what has been happening in Merlin's world :). So here goes.....

The Indian Apartment:

Somewhere in the middle of last year, I impulsively bought an apartment. An expensive one, oh yes its darn expensive, the most expensive thing I have ever purchased. And I did it sitting here in Stockholm. No planning, no cracking my head about investment risks, just in the middle of a Sunday... wham... and in a week, I had paid the booking amount. All my life's savings, plus a loan. That's Merlin for you :P. But hey, its swanky. Swimming pools, skating rinks, tennis and basketball courts, a gym and sauna... the works. 14th Floor, 3 bedrooms, 1700 sq feet. I feel rich :P

And the Stockholm one:

Nope, I didn't buy this one. Now now, don't get carried away, I mean I am not THAT rich :P. But this is where I have been living for the past more than one year, and me likes this place. When I rent apartments the deciding factor is always the bathroom and the kitchen.. I know.. its weird :P. Pics below are the hall and the kitchen/bar. I wont make you jealous by showing you the awesome shower cabinet :P

Oh, and then I travelled to New York. It was a business trip to Las Vegas, but I did a stopover at NY. I realized I know too many people who live in and around NYC. Stayed over with J and G, they are the "awesomest"!! Wanted to meet D, but was there for only 2 days and couldn't make it. Did manage to meet P and her newly acquired husband. Damn, a few years from now I wonder if I will know whom I am talking about :P.

Above is the Brooklyn Bridge, I love this photograph and the place, and gave myself a pat on the back for this click :). It was so charming just standing there looking out!

The classic "Hey I was in NYC" pic. And the SOL is captivating!

When I said "a picture speaks a thousand words" I meant something like this pic :). On FB I captioned this as "So what if my dog doesn't pee, it still needs to go for a walk" :)

And then I went over to Vegas for my conference. 5 days in Vegas was quite an experience. And the conference was awesome. And my clients were just the best. One of those trips where the universe conspires to make life awesome for you :)

That is Luxor on the Strip

This is the view from The Venetian where I was staying. It is the largest hotel in the world.

And it is called "The Venetian" for a reason. There are Venetian canals inside the hotel. This canal is on the 3rd floor of the hotel, and the "sky" is fake. Even when there one tends to forget that one is not in the open. The gondolas are electronically steered, thought the person does pretend to row.

Oh, and did I mention that I didn't get an ordinary room so I was erm.. kinda "forced" to stay in the Luxury "honeymoon" suite. This pic is not from the hotel website, it is taken from my automatic camera :P

And now you know why I didn't put up a pic of my apartment bathroom, I didn't want it to be compared with this. Oh, and there was a TV on the left hand top corner, which is not visible... but of course watching CNN while you brush your teeth is a basic necessity, isn't it?

And somewhere towards the end of 2010, I made it to India. I planned out a road trip to a few places (now I remember only Yercaud). The highlight was driving the automatic Mitsubishi Outlander, its an awesome beast. And stop calling it a SUV, its not, this thing is called a "crossover" :)

And then, sometime in spring, we went to Narvik. It was an awesome trip with P and C along with us. I had always wanted to go to see the Norwegian fjords. And it was a dream come true. This pic is a View from the Fagernesfjellet restuarant

This is a view from the train.. the awesome norwegian fjords!!

And then I celebrated my bday in July, I remember nearly blogging that day, I tend to get philosophical on bdays, and this bday was kind of a...erm... landmark :P

And then sometime in Spring we managed to visit Göteborg, a city in Sweden which is not as big as Stockholm, but yet a very serene city. We liked the architecture there, more interesting than Stockholm :)

Then, from Göteborg we also went to a place called Trandansen, near Hornborgasjön where hundreds of cranes come once a year on their way back north for the summer. It is called "The crane dance" and it is a sight to watch!

And then the lovely Swedish summer was on!! Had an awesome time in summer. I kinda now believe that in Sweden you tolerate 7 months of harsh dark winter only to see those 2 months of awesome summer... believe me, its worth it!

More of summer at the beach...

This is A and P's house in Danderyd, the place we spend weekends. Love biking around Danderyd whenever I am at their place, reminds me of biking in Jamshedpur!

And that, in a nutshell is what I have been upto since I left. Some more progress, things like I got two promotions, and a much better salary, but then, I have never had complaints in my professional life, you wont hear me cribbing much there :P. I continue to be a guest lecturer in Stockholm University (did I blog about that?) and have been offered a position in their PhD programme, which I am told, is not an easy task. But the professor with whom I deliver lectures is keen to have me as a scholar, and made the arrangements. Considering that it takes 8 years for an "industrial" PhD, I am not sure I will join, but more about that later.

Phew, this has been tough, explaining my life in the past 1 year in one post. Of course there will be spillovers... so more in some other posts!

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