Thoughts on The Fly

I just came back from a business trip to Nashville, Tennessee, USA to my home in Chennai, India. As these two cities locate on the almost opposite longitudes, the travel time is approximately the same either eastbound or westbound.

This time I took the westbound route, going over the Middle-East and Europe, with two 10-hour international flights plus one short domestic ride in the US. It was a long long trip and I had enough time on the airplane to think about flying.

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According to my expat friend working for the US government, Chennai is awarded as the least walkable city in the world. I don’t know if it’s true or not, but sounds believable. Road conditions, traffic rules, temperature and humidity – none of them are pedestrian friendly in Chennai. Walking on a narrow two-way road near my apartment seems walking on the shoulder of an 6-lane Interstate with a full of traffic at 100 mph.

So, what kind of factors determines the ‘walkability’ of a city? Here are my thoughts.

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Kitchen without Borders

During my vacation on a small island in Maldives, I met a true voyager of the world.

The island resort had one main kitchen serving breakfast, lunch and dinner buffet at the main restaurant with a capacity of two hundred or so. There were three a-la-carte restaurants, for which also the main kitchen did all the food preparation. A few dozens of chefs worked in the kitchen day and night for 365 days a year. The entire operation of this kitchen was run by one gentleman at his fifties, short-haired with chic designer glasses. He was the voyager.

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Traveling with Accidents

Travel brings you accidents – both positive and negative. An accident could be a bad weather (negative), meeting with interesting people (positive), or an unplanned change of the itinerary (depends).

As a follower of ‘Vagabonding‘, I like to keep my itinerary flexible so that I can accept and enjoy an unplanned event. I’m travelling to experience new things. I’m not travelling to confirm the pictures on the guidebook.

So, this is how my vacation trip to a small island in Maldives went…

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Girls Just Wanna Have Fun?

A fellow blogger, Jean gave me a comment on the past entry ‘Diversity vs Divercity‘:

Honest, I wouldn’t want to be a university-educated Japanese woman if she would like to seriously apply her education in a full-time career that relates to her education and remain in Japan. I have read enough that there are serious barriers for Japanese women even now in the 21st century to rise through the management ranks in Japan.

So here is my thoughts about the point.

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Mosquito and Golden Rooster

As the amount of rain increases, so does the count of sleepless nights. Last night, I was woken up three times by a tiny blood-sucker. I burned a mosquito coil for hours before sleep, but it did not seem to discourage mosquitoes from attacking me. I don’t like to put on mosquito repellant although I know good repellant products like DEET are very effective. Lying down in the bedroom smelling smoke, now I dream of mosquito-free night.

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Fly High! – Renovating Chennai Airport

While the construction of Chennai Metro Rail is in rapid progress everyday, another transportation hub that Metro Rail will connect to is on the final stage of the massive-scale modernization project. Chennai’s Anna International Airport is building two glass-walled terminals – domestic and international – connected via long corridor. I’m flying high for its opening scheduled in August!

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Monsoon in the Afternoon

In India, the monsoon season begins from the West. After a couple of summer months with no rain, now the temperature in Chennai is cooling down (relatively, to the 90s F.) It has been some rains, too. It is still months away from the monsoon here, but the west side of India, like Goa and Kerala, may have been in the season already. Eventually the monsoon crosses Indian subcontinent and reaches to the Bay of Bengal, bringing Chennai more rain and some other stuff.

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Diversity vs. Divercity

It’s not a typo. At the waterfront of Tokyo, there is a newly developed commercial complex called DiverCity Tokyo Plaza. The tag line, according to the developer, is ‘Tokyo Trend Revue, where entertainment, shopping, playing and dinning all come together’ or some like that. They have Old Navy, H&M, Coach, Zara, UNIQLO, etc. Well, in short, it’s just another shopping mall. Nothing diverse in its concept.

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