the mobile phone and me…

…don’t really get along too well.

I don’t like talking on the phone much…and if you have a problem with that, I’m sorry I can’t help you. Well, perhaps I can (by attending your call), but I don’t plan to πŸ˜€Β  I guess I owe many people this explanation (though very few of these people read this blog :D; the other option is to text them all. And they may call back. Uh oh…)

I really am not avoiding you, okay? I’m just avoiding your call. Ouch — no, I’m just avoiding having to talk on the phone. Leave me a text message, leave me an offline chat, leave me a mail. I’ll respond, almost instantly, unless i’m sleeping, or unless the phone is like hidden under the cushion, pushed int here by the naughty lil’ Pumbaa. But if I see an SMS, I WILL respond; I cannot guarantee that about a missed call you leave me πŸ˜€ I just don’t like the mobile phone much.

thumbitisNot that I hate it or don’t use it. Just that I don’t use it for what it is meant.Β A mobile phone, for me, is essentially just a replacement for Gmail chat πŸ˜€ I am a person of few words…I talk very little even face-to-face and I generally prefer “talking” to someone through “chat”or “sms”. And on chat/sms, I can go on for hours together πŸ˜€

You wont believe it, but I ALWAYS rely on a text message to communicate with someone, before having to actually call that person up. Including emergency situations like being on a busy highway, at the signal, and wondering if we must turn left or right to reach that person’s house πŸ˜€ And when I’m blasted for being so dumb, I dial the number, press “Call” and instantly stick the phone to Suraj’s ear (or whoever else is driving)!

There is just ONE person (yes, person) with whom I can actually talk non-stop, for hours. And that is Pumbaa πŸ˜€ Well, he can’t talk back, and one of us has to do that. So, I happily do it πŸ˜€

There are very few people with whom I can talk non-stop, for hours, on the phone. One of them is Amma. The other is my brother. Then there are a couple of close friends. Recently, after a rather long conversation (if I may call it that), Hobbes asked me if I were “the same girl who hates talking on the phone?” πŸ™„ Well, that did leave me mumbling for a bit.

And I can’t tell you just how many times I’ve got into trouble with Suraj for never picking up his calls. Well, how will I know he’s calling when the phone is (eternally) on silent mode? [Who puts it on silent mode? Uh…I do.]Β Even before getting married, this was a constant problem. I guess it was the ONLY reason for our quarrels. He would call, I wouldn’t pick up. He’d call 10 more times. Then he would try my mom’s number, but I’d be at the aunt’s place. Then he’d call the aunt’s number — but by then, I’d have run back home (having realised that the phone has been abandoned somewhere, undoubtedly on silent mode, and that Suraj would be trying to get through to me). Finally, he would get through to me and blast me. I would silently hear him out, ask him if he’s done, and then hang up and go my way.

Except with Amma and my brother, I think I switch to listening-mode with most others πŸ˜€ And happily too. I’m better at listening than talking. Some people make it tough, because most of the ones who matter knows me well enough to continue doing the talking without much expectations πŸ˜‰ Unless I’m completely comfortable with the person on the other side, even being on listening-mode is a pain. So, avoiding calls is the easiest thing to do.

I really don’t know why I talk so little — in general, and on the phone. There is one friend who calls me a chatterbox (really!), but well, I admit that I talk a LOT to him; well, I used to. To others, I think it is mainly because I keep thinking whatever I have to say or talk about will not be of much interest to the listener. Seriously πŸ˜€ I don’t know why I think so, but I do. I don’t say a lot of things, thinking it won’t be of any interest to that person, only to listen to something very similar coming from the other end πŸ˜€ And well, by then, whatever I could have said would have become stale ;)Well, I get into one of my PJ moods when some of my brother’s friends call…and I go on yap yapping for hours, till they hang up on me, threatening to kill me next time they see me. πŸ™„

So, basically, for me, a mobile phone is essentially just a replacement for Gmail chat πŸ˜€ And Winamp! I use it to text, and I use it to listen to my favourite music tracks. That is about it.

My first one was a Sony Ericsson w810i. I bought it because it came with the cutest, tiniest pair of external speakers πŸ˜‰ (which incidentally wasn’t working, and I still have not used!). I loaded all my music into it, and was always plugged to my phone through earphones. An incoming call in the middle of a favourite song would piss me off — and I’d just disconnect the call! πŸ˜€ Yes, I used to be that bad. I was sooooo attached to that phone that despite being gifted a 160GB iPod, I refused to part with the walkman phone. I did not use the iPod for almost a year! I used this for over 4 years (it looks MIGHTY sad now, considering the number of times it has gone bouncing down the stairs, into rain puddles, on to the road, blah blah!) It served me verrrrry well, though πŸ™‚

Finally, Suraj convinced me that I baaadly needed a new phone πŸ™„ I refused to exchange my w810. I would always want it, I said.

I bought the Sony Ericsson Xperia w8. Again, for the music. I HATED the fact that it was touchscreen! Texting someone became an ordeal. I actually began calling people! Bah. And then I got used to the touchpad, and now my phone is back to being a walkman, and a Gmail chat alternative πŸ˜‰ And I like the fact that I can access Gmail chat also on it πŸ˜€ That’s about the ONLY reason I appreciate a smart phone now. It is quite smart πŸ˜€ Well, the w810i was smart too, but I wasn’t smart enough those days πŸ˜‰Mobile phone stress relief

Poor thing, Suraj. New phone and all that, but it too has the silent mode thingy in-built! Oh well, I’m still the same, I guess. I still do not pick up calls πŸ˜€ Living in the same house makes it a little easier for him, I suppose. [And it does not help that he calls to remind me to do the many chores he assigns to me every morning, which I promptly forget 😦 Listen, if I forget it, perhaps I really do not want to do those πŸ˜€ ]

I still remember, how when we went to Coorg over a year back, there was no mobile connectivity at the homestay we stayed at. Was I thrilled! It was a real stress buster. No one called, no one texted, no one could contact me at all. Absolute “Yay” it was!! (Not that I’m always getting calls/text messages, but still) I was at peace, while Suraj freaked out. πŸ˜€

So why am I blabbering about all this now? Because recently, a couple of old college friends ganged up against me (okay, I’m exaggerating, but it was akin to ganging up alright. Bah!) for not keeping in touch. Well, I’m ALWAYS online — and none of you are! If you’re all always available on phone, why not give me a call? Er er…I mean, send me an sms πŸ˜€ Anyway, after explaining myself and brilliantly emerging as the innocent angel that I am, I’ve decided to give the single “ring-ring”s in loving remembrance henceforth πŸ˜€

However, all said and done, I have to say: the mobile phone and me…don’t really get along too well. πŸ™„ And I might even forget about the ring-ring agreement after a while. You are always in my mind, just believe that πŸ˜€ Was I any different at all when we met last weekend? πŸ˜€

Edited to add: Yay!! I’m not alone. She may be my soul sister πŸ˜€ I could easily have written this post!!

The 5 Best Cameras for Your Next Vacation: a guest post

It is not often someone writes to me asking if they can use my blog as a platform to write a post πŸ˜€ I received a mail saying my blog is much loved (yay!) and would be a perfect place to host a post. I agreed, and replied that I usually write nonsensical, sometimes funny, daily-life stuff — and that most of my posts are picture posts and travellogues. I guess there wouldn’t have a been a better suited guest post for a photography and travel lover like me πŸ˜‰ Thanks a lot, Jennifer πŸ™‚

So here it is, in Jennifer’s words:

The 5 Best Cameras for Your Next Vacation
How long have you planned that perfect vacation? And how long will you remember those breathtaking sunsets, ivy-covered castles, or that time you drank too many local ‘specials’ and your tongue turned purple? Choose your camera wisely, and those memories will be preserved, in all their colorful glory, for years to come. Whether you want a camera with more buttons and gadgets than 007’s car, or a simple camera that will let you point, shoot, and get back to your vacation, you’ll find it here.

Small, Simple, Powerful
Want a camera that fits in your pocket, but can still rise to just about any picturesque occasion? The slim Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7 is the best point and shoot camera out there. I think the automatic mode is perfect for an active, light traveler who wants great pictures without a lot of fuss. But if you want more control over aperture and shutter speed, it also has manual options. And the GPS feature is a must for any secret agent in training. Go ahead and video your friends running with the bulls, or snap the sun setting over the mountains. This 12.1 MP dynamo can take it.

Take Control
If you want an SLR for even more control over those shots, then choose the 14.2 MP Nikon D3100. I love how much less the D3100 costs than many so called professional cameras, but without sacrificing all the quality. It also weighs less than many SLR cameras. There are tons of individual scene settings like Child, Sports, or Night Portrait, and the 3 inch monitor is perfect for viewing your pictures or videos on the go. So be artistic with a sweeping landscape, or quickly capture that once in a life-time action shot.

Don’t be Afraid of the Water
If your plans include the wet and wild, then be sure to bring along the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS2. Unlike its earlier listed cousin, the TS2 is shockproof, freezeproof, and, my favorite feature, it can be submerged in up to 33 ft of water. Some other great features are the extended battery life, the image stabilizer for shaky hands, and an impressive 14.1 MP. Make your own water adventure movie, or go searching for the abominable snowman; this camera won’t fail.

On a Shoe String
Even if you spent all your money planning your awesome vacation, you can still find a great camera. For around $100, the Canon PowerShot SD1300 IS has an impressive 12.1 MP, a wide LCD viewing screen, and 15 shooting modes. I really dig the sleek contours of the silver model. So don’t worry about having to choose between food and photography on your vacation, this mighty little camera is here to help.

The Professional
Is your vacation just an excuse to take the perfect picture? If you are willing to spend quite a bit more money, then try the Nikon D7000. At 16.2 MP, the D7000 has all the resolution you could ever need. I like the 6 frame per second shooting capacity for moving targets, like birds in flight. You can capture the brightest sunrise or the lowest lit cavern. Try shooting your next whale-watching trip with HD 1080p video for cinematic quality flipper action. This camera will take you as far as your photographer dreams can imagine.


Written by Jennifer Skogen.

Technorati, list my friend!

A friend wanted to know what Technorati was…and how she could get her blog linked in there! Apparently, everytime she tried, she got an error message.

Well, how would I know? So, I went ahead, researched it, figured out how to claim a blog on Technorati, followed every step and finally got to doit.

Only, now they want me to paste this code here: 7VBURM8BWT3B, so they can come verify that I’m the real author of this blog. Sigh!

So, here you go, Technorati. Now, could you please help my friend put up her blog in your database too!? πŸ™‚