Tuesday : Tell-a- Tale

It took me about a week to complete reading this book ” The man who cycled the world”, written by Mark Beaumont.

Reading is a pleasure and a passion for me- most weeks I read about 3-4 books. This last week has been different- this book took me about 6.5 days to complete.

The man who cycled the world

Why did it take me so long to read this book ?

For one thing, this book has a lot of geography in it- the places Mark cycled through, as told by a person who has actually seen it and experienced it- was a novelty plus- he wasn’t a tourist- he saw the places from the perspective of a person who wanted to get the job done.

The job on hand : To get the world record ( Guinness Record) in cycling the world and he wanted to do it in less than 200 days. The previous record was by a person who did it in around 250 days. This whole goal setting thing was fascinating for me, with my constant struggles to improve myself and so I held on to every detail of the book and tried to get the most out of it- almost as a person who sucks a bone and gets the most meat and marrow out of it.

Did he beat the record ? 

Yes, he did- in 197 days and a few hours, he traversed the globe,  I would say, around the equator, which is probably the widest part of the globe- crossing the two mandated points, in order to qualify for the record. He cycled about 18,500 miles around the world.

Goal setting and how he did it ? 

Mark’s overall goal was to beat the record but he broke his goal into small aims- like one country at a time and when even that looked insurmountable, he broke a country into one day at a time, trying to achieve a target of a 100 miles per day.

What did I learn from reading this book ?

Man can do anything he sets his mind to. All he needs is :

  1. A determination
  2. A strong focus
  3. Help from people near and dear
  4. Help from people not so near but yet, whom one can make friends with
  5. A goal, aims and targets( Read post by thebikinibookworm on SMART goal setting)

When all these are put in the proper places, man can achieve his dream, because everything else, including nature will come together to put things in their proper places till his dream comes true.

Monday- News & Mews

It is Monday morning where I live.

The newspapers this morning report that Ms. Spain was crowned the Ms. World 2015. As with all pageants and competitions, there are controversies when one contestant is crowned over another. The issue raised here was whether the final answer provided by Ms. Lebanon on what the Ms. World title meant to her and her answer was about ” modesty, love and serenity being important for the world”.  I didn’t watch the pageant and this is from yahoo news that I read this.

Ms. World 2015

Honestly, I find these Ms whatever pageants frivolous and a tremendous waste of money and time. A Chinese contestant from Canada was denied a visa to enter China( which was hosting the pageant) because she had had outspoken views on Chinese religious policies.

What is the point of a Ms. World competition that does not encourage competitors to have a free view point of thinking ?

Do you believe in freedom of speech and do these matter in world class competitions which people think are for people to gawk at beautiful men and women from around the world ? Is it better that the contestants provide answers or speeches that seem ” right” for the occasion or should their individuality be counted towards their assets ? What do you think ?

The Misinformed Pageant - "The capital of Mexico is Mexico town..." "The duck is the largest flightless bird..." "Consuming buttered scones can lead to pregnancy."
The Misinformed Pageant – “The capital of Mexico is Mexico town…” “The duck is the largest flightless bird…” “Consuming buttered scones can lead to pregnancy.”

Meet and Greet 12/18

Thank you Danny for this opportunity. Danny writes about everything on earth and is a very positive influence on all bloggers.

Dream Big, Dream Often


It’s Meet and Greet Weekend at Dream Big!!

Ok so here are the rules:

  1. Leave a link to your page or post in the comments of this post.
  2. Reblog this post.  It helps you, it helps me, it helps everyone!  So don’t be selfish, hit the reblog button.
  3. Edit your reblog post and add tags (i.e. reblogging, reblog, meet n greet, link party, etc.), it helps, trust me on this one.
  4. Share this post on social media.  Many of my non-blogger friends love that I put the Meet n Greet on Facebook and Twitter because they find new bloggers to follow.  This helps also, trust me.

Now that all the rules have been clearly explained get out there and Meet n Greet your butts off!

See ya Monday!


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Gifts/loans or endowments

One of the questions I was set during my speaking test was “Do we pamper our kids too much ?” . That evening on a TV channel (?CNBC), I saw a program titled ” Do we pamper them(pets) too much ?”

These coincidences often happen to me. Around the time I am deluged by one new thought, I see/hear/read about the same idea from another source and always within a time period of 3 days.

My younger daughter has most things her way- we have been more financially stable ever since she was born or perhaps its because we had brought up one child already and knew that all these growth stages will pass one day and then she will be gone.

She gets gifts almost every day. If she is in trouble in school or anyplace else, we bail her out ( not a good habit to get her accustomed to, I know) and for X’mas, it is a ball. My husband does not believe in giving too much, so he puts a brakes in all my giving but despite all his braking, I manage to squeeze a few gifts by.

Perhaps other families are the same.

What are the consequences of giving children too much ?

Most of the money we save up though our lives will go to our children- what are we setting them up for ? Will they always be clingy and hope to get things done through their parents ? When I visited Boston last month, one of the cousins I stayed with said that she paid her daughter’s educational loans for her Engineering course in MIT but now she is not paying her loans for her Medical education . Apparently the daughter does not value the loan/gift that much.

It is the same with research funding. When funds are available and times are good, people accept these things as their rightful dues and move on, with no accountability but when funding is cut down and research money is not freely available, the cribbing starts.

Do you feel we pamper our kids too much ? Do our children have so much that they do not value the little things in life ? What do you think ?

Giving the IELTS exam a third time

As a person with English as a Second language ( though in my home country, I thought English being one of the official languages meant, English was my first language), yesterday I went to write the IELTS exam, which would prove my ability to manage in the English language, should I ever want to reside in a country where English is the first language ( confusing ?). Well, I am too.  As some may be aware, in my quest for constant self- improvement and acceptance, I am applying to a course which offers a Master’s degree in Science Writing. I love writing and since I am a student of Science( who has temporarily detoured into Administration, in order to save money to go back to science), I thought getting formally trained in Science Writing would perhaps help my prospects along. Add to this an obsession of mine to always be better than others’ around me( a remnant of my childhood competitive spirit) and I am a confirmed full time learner. But I digress.

The IELTS exam as the DELFF exam in French has four parts to it – Speaking, Listening, Writing and Reading. Each would take a good hour to complete. My entire day yesterday was spent at the Examination venue, with other ESLs(English as a Second Language).

I appeared for the exam the third time- meaning the first time I did it in 1997 and passed but the validity of the pass was only for 3 years’. At that time I thought I might go the UK to complete my Master’s degree in Medicine. That was not to be.

Then I did it in 2011, as part of my application to a Master’s in Public Health program. This pass expired in 2014. There was no reason for me to renew it that year but now that there is, I did it again. The results will be out on X’mas eve. Keeping fingers crossed.