Friday, December 30, 2011

This is what I am seeing right now

The view from the hotel and reading the book street fighting mathematics. Life is great and I couldn't wish for a better way to celebrate my birthday!

Breakfast in Kep

It's 9 am and we went for an early walk around the beach. The view is spectacular and I was fortunate to see some crabs too. I met Jacque and his boyfriend. Isn't it a small world otherwise what's the probability of meeting someone from SiemReap here in Kep

Good tidings!!

In another 2 hrs I am approaching my 36th birthday and I am glad that I am at this wonderful place by the sea. In this trip we criss crossed the whole of. Cambodia. Few days ago we were in Preah Vihear then Phnom Penh and now in Kep. I must thank my Mom for making this happen in spite of being in swivet about managing on her own to come over here to see me. Thank you mom. I love you and looking forward to tomorrow morning's ethereal sunrise here!

In Kep

We reached Kep like 30 minutes ago. I am grateful that we found a nice place to stay and it's like a minute away from the beach. Right now we are having dinner in the restaurant downstairs. It took us almost 7 hours to reach here. The bus ride to Kampot was not bad and from there we took a tuk tuk. Now it's time to check out the beach. Yay !!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Lunch at Indian restaurant

This is what mummy had for lunch. Hobo parantha and aloo puri. Usually I try to eat st different places but in Pnom Penh we are eating all our meals at this place. It's owned by Mr. Lal ji and he is awesome. He arranged for the tuk tuk which took us to the infamous S21 camp and later to theKing palace. Both of these places are must see if you are visiting this wonderful city.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Strength for Alok and his family

Yesterday I got an instant message from my dear friend Alok Verma about passing away of his Dad. I met Alok at Ashoka hall and developed an instant liking and we became good friends. Alok is an excellent teacher and kids totally adore him. I wanted to console him but couldn't say much. Last year I had the same experience of passing away of my Dad even though publicly i expressed a calm demeanor, I was unsettled. The next whole year i had never ending epic dreams of me and my father in various situation. I have always been in awe of my father and his accomplishments. From very humble beginnings he excelled and carved his own space. It's to this day amazes me how he managed to do all that. My father did so much for me and without his faith in me, I would be nowhere. It's that unconditional love that your parents give you that has no equal. Alok had the same feeling about his father. I realized that he needed a quite time to pay his tribute and reminiscence the good memories. I am happy that he saw that his father didn't suffer and died peacefully. Peace my friend, I am praying for you and want you to know that I am with you in this moment of grief and liberation. Metta.

Talking to my good friend Ray Simpson

I just had a face to face conversation with my really good friend Ray on Skype. He is a wonderful wonderful guy. I was trying to convince him to travel and spend some time outside his comfort zone. I got invited to his mom's house several time over thanks giving and Christmas and she is absolutely adorable. She just turned 91 and she is one of those people you feel totally at ease because of the warmth and love they radiate. I think this is the effect of living a life lived on true principles. I want to be like her calm and serene as I grow up.

Evening in Pnom Penh

I went around the Pnom Penh and I think I have a fair idea of the town. I think I am fascinated by the river side here. So I spent a good part of my time today in front of the river, enjoying the lovely breeze. On my way back I saw the two main monuments here. Therefore plan for tomorrow will be to leave early and cover these places with mummy and leave for Kampot and Kep

Pnom Penh River Side View and the train problem

 Technically this is my 1st day in Pnom Penh. We arrived here yesterday evening. I slept a lot and infact was even late for shower. At 16:30 I decided its enough and I should go and explore the town. I am living on 63rd street and Raj showed me on the map its location with respect to the river side. Its not too far so I decided to amble my way to the river side. So the pictures are mainly from the river front, I had a delicious spiced up corn and spent some time going over review of things I wanted to do. Today I did find the solution to a trivial problem about a train passing two guys in 10 sec and 9 sec respectively. If the train takes 20 minutes to pass by the 2nd guy after it has completely passed the first guy. How long will it take for the first guy to overtake the 2nd one. I have the solution though its not the most elegant as I have relied on algebra. Mine solution goes like this
  Let the speed of train be v m/s
             speed of first person be x m/s
             speed of 2nd person be y m/s
let L be the length of the train in meters so we have the following two equations
L = (v-x) 10
L = (v-y) 9
which gives
10v -10x = 9v-9y
v = 10x-9y
Since it takes 20 minutes for the train to reach the second guy, let the distance between the front of the train and the person be M meters
Let after t sec they meet, during that t seconds
v (20*60) = M+x (20x60)
M = (v-x)(20x60) meters
The first person travels L+M+yT distance to catch y in time T, therefore
xT = L+M+yT
substituting for M and L we have
xT = (v-x)10+(v-x)(20x60)+yT
Substituting for v we have
(x-y)T = (10x-9y-x)(1210)
(x-y)T =(9x-9y)(1210)
(x-y)T =9(x-y)(1210)
or T = 9(1210) seconds
which means T = 9x1210/3600 hrs

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Charging your phone by digital television

These days when most of us own phones which can be charged by USB. On this trip I decided not to carry my laptop because of ubiquitous cyber cafe here. My iPod lost all the charge after continuous use today. I read books on this device, update my blog and is becoming my primary device to access internet and learning new things. It's the convenience of carrying something so handy that makes your net book now seem like a mammoth. So when I came here with some trepidation I decided to charge my iPod using the television at my hotel. The thing which gave me confidence was the USB standard itself. Hopefully you too may find this useful next time when you are traveling.

Update from Pnom Penh

So we reached here at around 18 hrs. The journey was pretty good. The Mekong express is a good bus service. It costs only $11 and they give you snacks, wet towel and show you two movies. It's a comfortable bus ride comparing the cost and comfort.
Raj was here and was very helpful I am so glad I know somebody like him We had lunch at the local Indian restaurant. I had Gobi parantha with eggplant and lemon juice. Mummy had . We are staying here at PPC hotel and it's pretty reasonable and good thing is I can update my blog through my iPod

Monday, December 26, 2011

Converting ePub to mobi or kindle format

On of the easiest way to manage your kindle is to use Calibre. It's a free software that will sink all your ebooks. The best part is it recognizes the native format of your reading device and will automatically convert it to the requisite format. Last week I found a plethora of ebooks in ePub format and Caliber came to my rescue as I still prefer to read on a kindle because of its non glare screen and bigger screen size.

Tangram restaurant in Siem Reap

If you are planing to try Khmer food with a little exotic touch then a visit to Tangram is a must. It's very close to the end of Wat Bo road if you are coming from highway 6. The atmosphere is cozy, the staff is super nice and the meal is sumptuous.

Leaving for Pnom Penh

Today we are leaving for Pnom Penh. I book the tickets through Mekong Express they are right in front of central market. The ticket was only $11 per person. I am glad they also pick you up from your place

iPod : application launcher not working

This was the second time that my iPod behaved this way. A quick search on google revealed that it's quite a common problem. I tried hard rebooting several times to no avail. Last time when that had happen I Watson the midst of downloading an app and it hadn't completed. So my hunch was to let it complete, however this still didn't do the job. So what worked for me was to install another app. So just to repeat if you are having a problem launching apps(perhaps most of the apps, you might still be able to launch safari browser and access to app store) . The cure is to install another app.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I have started reading "What is the name of this book" by Raymond Smullyan. There are lots of the puzzles which have become classic and appear in this book. Seems really good. The other one that I have got is "Liar's paradox and the tower of Hanoi". This is more of an introduction and I am loving it. I had seen riddle of sphinx mentioned at many places and it was in this book that I finally read the whole story. It's written in pretty laid back manner.

Preah Vihear in Cambodia

 Today we went to Preah Vihear. It is situated around 240 kms from Siem Reap not about 140 km as claimed on the wikipedia website. The temple is on the hill top and is listed under UNESCO world heritage. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Tonle Sap lake

Today I took my mom to tonle sap lake and it was definitely a pleasant surprise. I got to drive the motor boat, see the crocodiles and the vicious fishes who devoured the small fishes in no time but the crowning achievement would have to be giving a math lesson to the orphan kids at the floating river school. I revealed the fast multiplication trick when one is squaring the numbers ending on 5 and I think i was able to connect with the kids during that short lesson. My boat driver was a lovely and convivial lad who made that trip such a memorable one!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Land mine museum and butterfly center

 Today we went to Land Mine Museum and the Butterfly center of Bantey serey. Land mine museum is an impressive showcase of one man's incessant pursuit to get rid of these pernicious devices. There are not many museums where you go and you encounter a pin drop silence. Considering my limited exposure to Cambodian history it was a crash course on the sanguinary regime that uprooted millions of Cambodians and resulted in massacre of over 6 millions. Its a somber reminder of how things can go wrong, so fast under a lunatic dictator.

  The butterfly museum was very interesting. They claim to have over 35 different species of butterfly. I learned the significant differences between moth and butterfly in terms of their antennas and the way they sit and their nocturnal and diurnal way of lives.

Monday, December 19, 2011

My favorite pictures of Angkor Watt

Some of my favorite shots (640 x 480)

My trip to Angkor watt

There are two types of people in the world. One who have visited Angkor Watt and one who hasn't. I can now proudly claim that I am in the former category.yay!
The way my class VI decorated the board for my farewell at Ashok Hall. Sweet memories I still cherish.

Sumant's Ashok Hall farewell pictures

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Night market with mummy

Yesterday we went to the night market across the river. It was my first time out there and I guess it's perhaps the best night market in Siem Reap. The most organized and ofcorse the free Apsaras dance show.
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