Previous month:
May 2005
Next month:
July 2005

Crazy Flight Made More Bearable by Channel 9...

Took a United Airlines flight from Chicago to Philadelphia yesterday. The airport in Philadelphia was plagued by bad weather - thunderstorms - and our pilot informed us up front that we might have problems. 

He also informed us that we could listen in to the radio conversations between the cockpit and various air traffic control stations along the way on Channel 9 on our seat audio systems.

I heard about United Channel 9 from Microsoft's Channel 9 web site team. United inspired Microsoft in opening up their behind the scenes operations a little.

Anyways, United Channel 9 is very fascinating. Hearing not only my plane but all the planes in the vicinity talk to controllers was comforting and enlightening. Was kind of like listening to an audio blog in the skys.

By the way, the ground control at Philadelphia airport has got some serious problems. We waited about 30 minutes after we finally landed to get clearance to the gate and one controller would not even acknowledge our plane and, when he did, was quite rude.

Chicago - beautiful place....

Never having visited Chicago before, I didn't really have a set impression of this place. I am impressed with what I have seen so far. The first impression I had was of all the greenery everywhere. Parks everywhere.

I haven't been on the lakeshore but it looks wonderful from afar. Marinas, walking / bike paths, and a large carnival area.

Today, friends of the family bought us lunch in Milennium Park - an incredible place with a Frank Gehry designed bandshell (think round curls of metal everywhere) and plenty more public art.  I haven't transferred my digital camera photo pictures yet but here is a photo I stole from another web site:


Flying into Chicago...

Some amazing views out my airplane window yesterday. I can't yet get the digital camera to work as I want, but its coming. There was another plane on a parallel decent to ours and I like this photo I took of these fellow travellers above the Chicago skyline:


Blogging the Rotary International Convention in Chicago....

Just arrived in Chicago for the Rotary International World Convention. I feel very excited to be here. I have been in Rotary for almost 5  years. It has been an enormously positive experience for me - one place where I can get a pulse on my community and a lot of insight into life.

As mentioned below, I am blogging the convention here.

You often read of the stodginess of Rotary and of Rotarians. Well, this is changing. A lot of young people are joining Rotary Clubs and I have found the "old guard", for the most part, very welcoming of the changes.

Arjun goes to America...

Well,  this is the long awaited fortnight. My first visit to the States since August 2001.

To begin, my father graciously decided to sponsor a trip to the Rotary International Annual convention in Chicago. Added bonus: we are going together. This is the 100 year anniversary of Rotary and should be quite something to celebrate it with 37 000 other people from 150 odd countries around the world. I have even set up a blog to document the experience.

Then, its off to Washington DC to my cousins for a big famdamily reunion. I love my extended family. And look forward to all the in person updates. We are also going to the Smithsonian, damn it.

Leave 6am Thursday.

The Insane Cost of a Safety Razor...

Men have it so hard. Especially hairy men. Like me.

I just bought a 5 pack of Razors for something like 10 bucks. I have not yet been able to understand the reasons that (might) justify each razor being worth a royal $2.  Someone needs to explain this to me.

Maybe, I am buying the wrong type or razor -Gillette Mach something or the other. Got to look into some less expensive, more enviromentally friendly options.

The shaving folks got people like me by the short and curlies (northern division). Its almost enough to make me want to grow the mountain man beard again.

Kamloops Own "Embedded" Reporters....

I wonder how they work it financially, but I am very pleased that the Kamloops Daily News has recently had reporters on the scene when locals and local organizations do great things in far off places.

In February of  this year, City Editor Mike Cornell travelled to Tsunami ravaged areas of Sri Lanka with members of a locally founded world development organization - Developing World Connections.

And today,  Arts Editor Mike Youds might just be getting to the pavillion in Venice Italy where Kamloops Art Gallery Executive Director Jan Bailey is joint curating the Canadian entry in the Venice Biennale.

I think it is important for newspapers in smallers communities to, every once in a while, figure out how to finagle resources to send reporters farther afield.  After all, just as with larger cities,  some stories of local interest don't take place locally.

One thought: the stories from these "embeds" should also be posted online. The Daily News web site is pretty basic and there is no regular content archive, but these special events should have some permanent online record. Even create a blog, with the ability to leave comments, etc.

Harley Singh is No More...

This week of blogging has so far been a solemn one.  My family had to put down our dog of 13 years today.  I am not a huge dog person but Harley almost converted me. Ever since my Sister brought him home, this gentle, kind soul graced family homes all over the country. My sister's children pulled his tail, sat on his back - and our friend never flinched. It was a real honour to follow this wonderful creatures life - from start to end.

Go well, my friend.

A Tribute to Stan Pethybridge...

Bad news at Rotary today. Stan Pethybridge, a long time member, passed away. Stan must have been in his 70s or 80s. He has been a member of our Club since 1974. 

I really liked Stan and appreciated his friendly "hello".  One of the last times we met, in Sahali Mall, we talked a bit of politics. I am always a little careful when talking to someone from a different generation about political issues. But, at the end of out short conversation, Stan surprised me and said "keep up the good work". I really appreciated him saying that too.

Rest in Peace, Sir. You will be sorely missed.