• Chennai,  Homepage,  Lifestyle,  Rostrum

    Got my third dose of COVID-19 vaccination

    Two days ago, got my booster dose of Covaxin at the Apollo Medical Centre, T.Nagar, Chennai for INR 390. It was easy and thankfully, had no troublesome side effects. Though I had gotten (natural) infected with COVID19 and recovered during the January (third) wave, I wanted to get this done when there is little demand. I booked a slot in the Cowin portal. I was in and out of the clinic in ten minutes, including the five minutes post-injection recommended wait. In India, for those who are above 60 years of age, booster doses are available for free from Government centres. For those in the age bracket of 18 to…

  • Homepage,  Rostrum

    My diary of COVID-19 days

    I wish the 517 Pages, 166 thousand words I have written were for a novel, but they are not. Two years back, a few days after India was lockdown, I started writing – what can be called as – personal notes. It started as an emotional support tool for myself, daily COVID-19 numbers in Chennai, then expanded to be a health record & (contact) traceability record of who I met during the day and a bit of news and later matured into a diary. Today I saved the file for a final time, renamed it to “Notes on March 2020 to March 2022-COVID Years” and stashed it away. My own…

  • Homepage,  Rostrum

    I recovered from COVID-19

    Recovered from COVID-19 After dodging the virus for the last two years, I got infected last week. A wave of cold/cough/fever was circulating in our house from the week of Pongal – first my son, then mom and then my wife. I should’ve picked it from one of them, even though my son and mom on the first symptom were isolated in their individual rooms. Last Monday (17th Jan 2022) I was feeling dryness in my throat, then on Wednesday, I got a fever, which rose to 102.8″ F in the next two days. I did myself a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) which showed positive within the first minute, confirming…

  • Chennai

    The giant display walls seen during rocket launches

    I have wondered about the effectiveness of the large display walls in mission control rooms that we see on TV during rocket launches. Not only the USA (NASA) but Russia, India (ISRO), China and other spacefaring nations too, have these. Maybe in the 1960s when desktop computer displays were poor, these display walls had a purpose, do they still do? Having a backdrop of colourful, fast-changing charts and pictures do make captivating visuals in TV and news articles. But do the operators in the room see them and use the data for decision-making? These display walls are now being seen in many other places too, like in Police control rooms…

  • Lifestyle

    European cinemas are smoking a lot

    Recently I have been watching a number of European films (Spanish, French & others) like Corniche Kennedy (2016),  The Girl with a Bracelet (2019), The Commune (2016) and more. Irrespective of the genre, I noticed that most of the main characters were shown smoking. Needless to say, outside India (and few other Asian countries) smoking is not exclusive to the Male gender. I was wondering whether European films were exaggerating real-world behaviour? In India, thanks to stricter laws and censorship, the number of smoking scenes seems to have reduced in the last decade. Also, awareness campaigns, increasing literacy, have reduced the smoking we see in the streets in India –…