Sunday, January 31, 2010

Alternatives to Copenhagen team!

Hepsibah, Prachi, Nisha and I were the team behind Alternatives to Copenhagen.

However, it was hard explaining to the kids in class that only team work finally works with anything.So to have a successful event, they all have to help. They saw finally for themselves that the conference- Alternatives to Copenhagen was so successful because it was team work that finally won the day. It was a good lesson for them all and hopefully everyone has learnt that by sticking together for the two days, the event was a roaring success.
Some of the girls washed plates, the guys swept the floors, others sold plants and yet others maintained silence in the hall. It was a lot of work, we are exhausted by the roller coaster ride, but it was a great experience for all who participated.

Thanks to Vestas for their generosity in helping us through the programme with their generous contribution of 50, 000 rupees. Reva with 5000, GNT with 2,500 and Daily Dump with 2,000. Thats how we gave out free lunches and registration was just Rs 20.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Reliance tees!

Look at our especially designed tees from Reliance. We had to buy them at Rs100/- each which was Reliance's cost price, but it was worth every paise and we had the 50 extra sold off in a jiffy.
Sold at cost price, everyone who came for the event was keen on having a teeshirt as they were really good looking. Check out the pic against the main specially designed back drop.
The cutest was this tiny 'lil girl on the second day who was most dissapointed as we had only large and meduim sizes and none to fit her!She has an eye for the good stuff alright!
BUT, I LOVE the picture on top and just look at that happy class. It's a mix of the first and second years, so you now know why I am enjoying teaching them.

Friday, January 29, 2010

The idiot box

A photo exhibition called TV Viewers at the National Gallery of Modern Art on Palace Road by famed French photographer Olivier Culmann was really a superb experience. The creativeness of Olivier was seen in every single picture. For some reason he was hung on subjects in Ernakulam and every picture of the adults were stiff and dressed up! It was only the kids who were lolling in 'home clothes'!Take a look at the pic -- his fav of a couple in Kerala and apparently the guy said to him -- see I am holding the remote-- in other words, I've got the power!!Poor guy!in his dreams! :-)Look at the womans face - you can see who has the power!!

Taking family for granted

It's odd the way we take family for granted and grumble at the drop of a hat. Finally it was family that supported me all the way on the first day of the conference.
Bonny came in with me at 9 and stuck right through till 4pm.
Thats when I realised I dont really look past my nose. Family is where my support really is, the rest, well thats just part of my life!
The first day was a great experience.The hall was FULL to capacity and I was GLAD cause there is nothing like having an empty hall to put a speaker off forever. Our volunteers in their Tshirts looked really fantastic and everything including the food distribution went really well.
I could have not asked for more!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Alternatives to Copenhagen

It's D Day at last and the two day Conference is on in St. Joseph's mentored by me. Frankly we have all worked very hard together to get it on the road. Now we just hope it works.
Everything from getting the sponsors to actual setting up of the event has been done by us without any outside help. Ofcourse there are some areas where we could have done better, but considering we have just had only from the 4th of Jan to organise it, I think its going well. Today will show if there is a crowd lining up for the free lunch!

Vestas has funded us with 50k which has taken the brunt of the expenses, but smaller payments were very welcome. Reva, GNT and the Daily Dump too have been a great help.
Our speakers sound superb, so lets see how the event goes.
Fingers and toes crossed!

Friday, January 22, 2010

The scented lily

These lilies are used extensively for weddings as decoration everywhere along with carnations, orchids and Gerbra. Long lasting, they are large blooms and spectacular just pure white or in pink and orange. Besides being beautiful to look at, I love them particularly for their perfume which is definitely not delicate!
The perfume is very piercing, and the whole house smelled of it for over a week after Andrew and Annika's wedding flowers were brought home for us to enjoy from the hall.I took deep breaths every time I passed the arrangements and wondered, can't Elizabeth Arden make a perfume of it? She is known for her floral scents and I love all of them.
Now Terry has bought two pots of golden yellow blooms and put them on the terrace outside our bedroom window! Gorgeous!
Checking on their name, all I found was Lillium :-) Isn't there a more exotic name for them?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Copenhagen Flagship species

There are ten Copenhagen Flagship species under threath of extinction and one of them is this little guy called the Nemo or clown fish. I saw a real one in Karl's fish tank in Manhatten. It was as cute as this guy and quite a zippy character too.By the way they are not fresh water fish and I wondered how Karl kept his tank so spotlessly clean.Incase you did not know---a flagship species is a species chosen to represent an environmental cause, such as an ecosystem in need of conservation.:-)

Alternatives to Copenhagen!

The 29th & 30th Jan are coming up faster than expected. The 2 days are red letter days for me, as I have helped organising a conference called Alternatives to Copenhagen. We have several speakers lined up, from Wind Energy to depleting tree cover, youth environment activism and green buildings, plus Greenpeace and BT Brinjal.Its going to be an interesting two days with a cycle rally, Photo competition, Dace Competition and Art Competition thrown in for good measure. Reliace is giving us designer Tee shirts for 100 bucks each and Saleh Ahmed the Shamianas at cost price. Since we are offering a free lunch we hope to pull in the corwd. Fingers crossed, there is a lot of excitement over the programme, so hope it goes off well.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The beauty of Jazz

After running around the Bella Center in Copenhagen,I am back to covering light performances and other fun stuff in the city, thanks to Mini the Ed of the Hindu Metro Plus.Climate Change is the fire in my belly, BUT, after depressing Copenhagen, covering music and literally letting my hair down is a great feeling.

What's nicer is I can use all my experieces to teach the kids in College first hand all about PR since I have the PR kits and the programmes to share with them. I totally believe that journalism cannot be taught by academics and people who have no experience in the line.Its interesting to note how my students enjoy the experiences I relate in class as empirical examples and they spill them out obligingly onto their answer sheets as well.

To go back to Jazz and China Moses who is in the pictures with ace pianist Raphael Lemonnier. The show was a heart stopper. I loved every minute of it and was so sorry I never took Steve along with me.

Anyway, looks like Bangalore is firmly on the jazz map of the world and we will see a lot more artistes coming here to perform.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Living in such a perfect world

While we walked around Samso Island and clicked pics of the place and the picture book homes, I wondered. Are those people who live in those homes happy. I mean, sublimely, supremely happy? In comparison to us who live in a developing economy whose roads and infrastructure can destroy your peace of mind for an entire day if you let it.
I would love to live in a place which was sort of in between. I mean, could I have a semblance of a pavement and a decent enough infrastructure -- not perfect and definitely our weather here in Bangalore, and I could be happy forever.
Samso was so cold, no one stirred out of their homes except for us crazy journos.Even to pick up the apples that had fallen off the trees!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The 350 Campaign Polar Bear and me

While taking a breather from the media room I stumbled on the Polar Bear which was part of the 350 campaign for the day. Could not resist being like anyone else and had to pose with the bears heavy paw draped across my shoulder-- thrilled grin in place!

When am I going to stop remembering Copenhagen. It was such a roller coaster 2 weeks and I was glad to get out of there and YET, COP15 has been instumental in building unprecedented awareness about Climate Change. The world has finally sat up and taken notice. Hopefully everyone realises its CC which is causing all these snow storms. Not be dumb enough to believe CC is just global warming --- thats being sublimely brainless.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

The Lego Wind turbine works!

It was a very determined set of three -- Rashme, David and Steven who sat down and decided to finish setting up the Vestas limited edition wind turbine lego set I had brought back from Samso island for Steven.

The how- to manuals were open, lunch was hurriedly eaten in between and all that was left to be set up was the motor to turn the turbine.David raced across the road to buy batteries from the kaka shop opposite fixing in four batteries in place. Switching on the motor there was no signs of life at all in it. I too stood very down cast and crestfallen as carrying the huge box home had been a very hard task for me.Especially after the harassment at the Air France counter in Paris for carrying 'over-sized' carry on luggage.( Never travel Air France, they are not a helpful bunch at all)

Then suddenly David turned the motor over and noticed slots for four more batteries! Another charge across the road to the kaka shop and THEN--- the moment everyone had been waiting for happened! The graceful blades of the lego turbine began to move in imitation of the massive ones I had admired on Samso island. It was a thrilling moment for all of us!

Pictures have been taken to share with friends and brother Andrew in the US, who I am sure would have loved to have been part of the team assembling the turbine.

Thank you Vestas for such a great Christmas gift, not only for Steven, but for all of us, especially for David and Rashme who are home from the UK for the holidays!