Monday, June 7, 2010

Fashion Nazi...

No I am not going to write about Day 2 and Day 3 in wales. Its not because they were bad or because I don't have anything to write about. Its just that, I feel bored to write something which I would rather just talk out. It was not like the cold play music concert I have gone 2 years back. It was never that exciting. But standing on top of Great Ormes in Holy head Wales, is like standing at the edge of the world. I have got reminded of Pirates of the Caribbean- at worlds end; many times that day :)

I have been just thinking of how fashionable the Londoners are! They are indeed very fashionable, I am not talking about East or South London. Europeans looks very natural when they dress up, and they are very comfortable with what they wear. I think that's what makes them look naturally casual and cool. I have spent time in Oxford street just looking at the way people dress. Some people dress weird, but more than dress some people have real punk hair styles and piercing.

I have been feeling very odd to wear sneakers out side. If you observe, Indians have taken so much interest in wearing sneakers (running shoes, sports shoes, trainers) into the streets. I guess the shoes brands Nike, Adidas, Reebok and Puma are making the crowd stick on to their sneakers rather than growing to the casual shoes like Sketchers or Clark's. I am happy to see that Tennis Shoes and plimsolls are picking up the speed. Although tennis shoes are called so I don't think any one really play tennis in tennis shoes. That's one thing people are picking up fast and which is still cool in west. Unfortunately none of the plimsolls fit my feet. Thumb rule is that no one wear Sneakers unless they are jogging or on the way to gym. OK I don't want to sound like a fashion Nazi or anything, I think I have been following GQ magazine so close.

So wearing a sneaker to the London street was so so weird that I was forced to buy a boot. I even identify Indians by checking their shoes - I don't need a shoe to find that but with shoe alone I can find that. I found it rather difficult to blend in with the European crowd than the American crowd. It could be the way their skin tone and hair colour match so perfectly with their dressing and the way they carry themselves, I always find blond and red head people have the absolute power to look cool just by having a little hair gel. If you have got a good tattoo with red, green and black; it just multiplies the look by 2 folds.

I have been having this thought of getting a tattoo for long time, but I don't think any one in my family would appreciate that :) I had a small argument with my friend about that, according to her I don't have to mind other people's opinion when its not going to affect them. If it is going to make me happy and my decision is not going to affect any one I shall go ahead and do it. That was her point. I liked that also. But how many people would find it cool, how many people would take it as a medium to prejudice me (i cant cope up with current) yes the tattoos conveys the boldness which makes the person go and get a tattoo overcoming these thoughts. So I think I don't deserve a tattoo as these thoughts are haunting me whenever I think about it. Also the tattoo I would have loved to have is a dragon tattoo, which will have religious implications as well. I don't want to have that anyway. So for the time being tattoo is taboo. May be when I have a gal and if she likes it, I will do it. :D

Ciao now!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Day 1 ....

To be honest I really don't enjoy anything these days... I am trying to find out what exactly I am in need of. Is it medication? or is it some body of something I am longing for?. I have no clue. Anyway when my best buddy asked me to plan a trip to wales I took interest in that only because she is one of the things which still makes me happy. As I have wrote down in the previous post I have made an extensive plan, there have been dynamic changes to that which were not unexpected, I am happy that we have decided not to go to climbing and try to utilise that time for some other splendid sights in North Wales.

The day started dull as the underground stations were going on a maintenance shutdown (at my station) which made my trip slow by 45 min and I had to go by bus to another station Which led me to the disaster I want to forget. while waiting in the unfamiliar station I just thought to check something in my camera bag, I didn't take out anything just opened the bag and looked for a strap, mean time the train came and I stood up!!! Damn! My Nikon D80 with 18-200mm VR lens (those who doesn't know how important that's to me - both of them together cost me 2000 USD 2 years back) fell out of the bag (thank god my 105mm micro stayed in the bag other wise another 800USD also would have gone for a toss) to the concrete floor of the station. Later figured out since the optics were solidly built - thanks to the metal barrel Nikon has put - didn't suffer much. But the focusing mechanism is not fully functional :( and fortunately the body is also OK. When I am writing this I am trying to see the positive side of it, I didn't wreck the lens and camera at least not to an extend that I was not able to take any pictures in the trip.

Though the trip started with a bang - I am telling you I was so moody and still moody because of this bang on my head, still some thing keeps yelling at me 'stupid stupid stupid' - my mood took a upturn when I got a look at the train I am going to travel from London Euston to Wellington Bank Quay (final destination was Glasgow in Scotland for the train) it was really like a snake, a state of the art train from Virgin Train fleet (Class 390 Pendolino). The huge lettering on the engine which said Virgin made it sexier to look at. It had a real sharp nose and the doors and all were touch sensitive and the door step flips out ward when the door opens etc etc.

After taking a change at Bank Quay to Arriva Trains Wales (I was not happy to part with Virgin though) finally I have reached our rendezvous point Chester. Where I have booked for an intermediate car from Europcar, which was cheap compared to Avis, but that came with a lot of sacrifice on time. The car I have booked for was a skoda octavia 1.6 or similar, the one I got was Vauxhall 1.8 which is more like van than a sedan. She gave me a GPS which didn't have a holder for which I had to go back (from the car park) to get another one. Then I had set off the journey to the station for which I have taken at least 3 wrong turns even with a GPS which was not healthy at all. But even then I didn't realise the speaker of the GPS is not working. Then I picked up my friends and tried to find a restaurant, that's when it really got on to my nerves. Until then I didn't have a round about to handle. I can take care of the round about only if some one says which exit (first, second, third or fourth exit from round about) I have to take. That's when I realised a GPS with out sound is utterly useless. I have been driving round to match the exit the GPS is showing me to take instead of telling me; believe me the picture will be legible only when you miss the one you are supposed to take, it never works unless you have the sound. So I have gone back to the old lady at the rental place to get a replacement. So with all these thing I have lost 2 hours at Chester. Strike 2

These two experiences and the rain in Chester didn't give me a good feeling. Then we head off to the Coernarfon - god knows how to spell it in Welsh - we have had our own welsh experience with words spelled worse than the volcano in Iceland. Trying to read out the words (which uses the same alphabet as English) indeed gave us good laugh. With little difficulty we arrived at our Welsh home (Bed and Breakfast) which was indeed very appealing and beautiful and absolutely value for money 65£ pr night for 2 people sharing room with a 5* hotel facilities and Welsh Break fast (Bacon, Sausage, Mushrooms, Scrambled egg and Tomato).

First day was more of settling down and everything. Still I could feel myself mourning for my lens. But may be it was time for me to get another lens. Since I do not have any problem in the lower zoom area I think I can live with this for now. And later I may get a longer lens like 70-300mm which would give me more range and would cover the lost range of my 18-200mm.

Rest of the trip was great fun and if I am about to write about that it would take lot of space. But I think I will write something from the trip later. Cheers guys!