Monday, December 02, 2019

~ Reflections on completing 39 ~

Cannot believe that we are already in December of 2019. Thought I shall make an exception on my birthday to put my reflections over a blog post rather than threaded tweets. If you notice this happens to be the second post for this year. Wish I will get back to writing more often in 2020.

2019 probably happened to be my busiest year of my existence. After becoming a parent, in 2017, definitely there has been plenty of changes to my lifestyle as well others in my family. This June we enrolled our daughter to PlayGroup, who now spends 2 hours at the pre-school. Therefore there are plenty of pre and post school tasks that gets added to my daily routine. 

Few reflections on different subjects that matter to me -

Health - One of my objectives in 2019 was to be healthy - mind and body. However, things didn't go as per plan. Was 83 kilos, in April, which was the heaviest that I had ever weighed. Decided to sign up for the Adobe's 5K run that occurs every June, with the aim of loosing weight & also re-start my running. Completed the 5K in 40 mins. With continued elliptical workouts and watching what I ate, by Aug, I weighed 77.5 Kgs. I still would like to shed additional 3 kilos to remain below 75 Kgs. Even though I was a social smoker, I happened to kick the butt for good on 31st Dec 2018 and haven't looked back! Maybe I should write a separate post to share my reading and learning on diet and eating habits, if that helps anyone out there.

Time - The biggest realization of 2019. TIME, is the most valuable currency in life. Prioritize on how you invest it, be it with people or activities that you engross in. Don't waste it, since you can never reclaim it. Some wise men, millenniums ago, had discovered the same and stated watch your breath and stay in the moment. In order to live every moment, one needs to bring full awareness (mindfulness) towards your mundane life activities. Prioritizing tasks, at the beginning of each day, helps in better time management and saving some for yourself i.e. ME-time. Fortunately, everyone in this world is blessed with the same time-scale. Hence, it is left unto oneself on how effectively it is utilized and for a purpose. You can quote me on the below one, if you like it ;)

Time is the best keeper of accounts, of what we do. While Karma is the ultimate settler of scores.

Reading - I love reading books and couldn't read much last year. This year I have set a target of 15 books and let's see how it goes in the next 29 days. If you are interested in knowing what I am reading then hit this twitter thread. Again, the more efficient time slicing shall help in investing for more things one wishes to do.

Environment - Another important aspect for me is, the way we live and utilize the resources during our period of stay on this planet. This has a direct impact on what we pass on to our future generations and also how sustainable the eco-system would be for life itself. Continued with composting for yet another year, the last month hasn't been that effective and should set it right. We planted about 8 trees early this year and hope to improve next year. Discovered water-less cleaning for cars and 2-wheeler in September, which has helped in water conservation. You should give it a try and help conserve water. Another tweet thread ;)

Do watch Carl Sagan's classic - Pale Blue Dot. Lot to soak in and act upon.

Communication - Very essential skill in life and also in my work. Don't try to resolve fundamental conflicts with people, it wouldn't get you anywhere and no one would win. The biggest communication problem is we don't listen to understand. We listen to reply. I think I have improved quite a bit this year and plenty of room to improve.

Save money - For yourself and for your kid(s). I had always known from friends and colleagues, who have had kids, regarding private education being a costly affair in Urban India. Now, am witnessing it when I enrolled my daughter to pre-school. Not sure if anyone else has said it earlier, here's what I think - 
Education is the best contraception

Those who are working should aim for saving at least 25% of your income for their short-term and long-term goals. Have an investment adviser who can help you choose the right investment vehicle based on your risk-appetite. Also having a Chartered Accountant would be a bonus to deal with the IT filings at year end.

Shaping life - The most challenging part of being a parent. As a parent, I feel I shouldn't pass my biases on her and she should explore them as she grows. Even though it's initial years, these are the formative years for my daughter who is curious and exploring things around her. At her age, she will imbibe plenty of habits & patterns based on what she witnesses. Hence, I feel it is very important for myself on what I - say, teach, share - with her. Definitely, she will be influenced by people around and what she watches, as she interacts/spends plenty of time with people during the day & gets approximately an hour of videos in a day. 

Be kind - Mean is easy; kind is hard. Even a teenager can be mean. It takes effort to be kind & hence do the needful. Be grateful. No matter how awful your life seems at the moment, you have something to be grateful for. Gratitude always helps. 

My life now can be viewed as before and after my daughter. "Staying Agile" is the way of life for a parent. No book can ever teach you on how to be a parent, apart from living it. Enjoying my time with the little one! 

Parenting is no easy thing. Hats off to my parents and rest of the parents out there. Also, huge respect to single parents.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed on the above & making me a better person!

Monday, April 08, 2019

~ Delhi Crime ~

Delhi Crime is based on the 2012 Delhi gang rape case that took place in the neighbourhood of Munirka, in South Delhi. The Netflix series follows the story in the aftermath of the gang rape, where Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), South Delhi, Chhaya Sharma (Vartika Chaturvedi in the reel) is tasked to find the culprits, responsible for the assaults and death of the female victim. Shefali Shah has performed the role of Chhaya Sharma very well.

Yes, I finally finished watching the series and it is well made. The anthology on the gruesome gang-rape is written and directed by Richie Mehta, Canadian film director and writer. It presents a view-point on different characters from the Delhi Police who were crucial to the investigation. 

After hearing constant corruption cases and scams involving politicians from different political parties over the last decade, people were very angry at Central government of 2012. Even I was very outraged at that incident and vented my anger against the establishment in a post 'Dance of Democracy'.

In an Insta-Everything-World, people's expectations from - the government, the police, and the judiciary - are such that we expect cases to be solved and justice delivered instantly. After watching Delhi Crime, the Indian viewer is reminded of the reality of we Indians live and operate. The situation depicted of Delhi Police probably holds good for any state police force across the country - under-staffed, over-worked, paid less, lacks infrastructure, etc. Against all such odds, the Delhi Police team under Chhaya Sharma, DCP South Delhi, did do an impressive job and arresting all the 6 accused in a span of five days, under some tremendous pressure and scrutiny from politicians, media and citizens. 

Rapes haven't stopped in Delhi or elsewhere in the country post December 2012. Here's a twitter trail on few of the rapes that I have come across and that's been reported in the media. This is definitely is not complete list, it requires the collective effort from the family and society in the up-bringing of young boys and men. 

We the people have very high expectations from our forces while not considering the factors under which they operate. Unfortunately, our country has been run like this for ages, without much accountability from the governments that have ruled from Independence. Wish the young citizens of the country will change that and ask questions to the governments that seek vote every 5 years -

  1. Why should there be reforms to law, judiciary and governance only when such terrible incidents happen. Why cannot the law-makers, read politicians, work for the betterment of people and forces?
  2. Where do all the funds for the police forces go and how are they spent?

In retrospect after watching Delhi Crime, I feel the Media could have done much better job instead of bashing the police force for other political agenda. Media plays a very vital role in any democracy. However, in the recent years many journalists, TV and print, instead of reporting they also seem to be involved in doing activism leveraging their reach. Thanks to Social Media which has brought some equilibrium in countering such one-sided activism.

Additional reading - 
1. Chhaya Sharma inspired Delhi Crime