28 December 2023

Why does one talk to strangers?

As Raj Sundaramurthy had once pointed out to me… “How else does one make new friends?”

What a great friend we made this evening!

The plan was to calm down after New York driving with an Old Fashioned and a wine. Since it was Sharmila and I at a bar, it obviously meant we were going to formulate some travel plans. In fact, the specific thing that we needed to decide was whether to leave the city the next day or stay back for a day and accordingly make hotel and flight arrangements.

Well, this is me at a bar. So, we did nothing of that.

We spent the whole evening making a new friend in Jenny who was sitting next to us. Heard some of the most fascinating stories of life she has led. Got to know most of her family members too thru her stories!

Sharmila got a taste of what an evening at a bar while I am on the road feels like.

Looking forward to a “generic” (ah! well! “Jenn-Eric”) evening during our next trip to New York!

28 December 2023

Got a bit of my mojo back

After 31 years of driving, I had caused an accident. I have gotten hit by other cars before but I had never hit anybody. Not saying I have not scraped a car or two in some tight corners of Boston underground parking here and there… but never hit another car on the road.

Well, the confidence was a bit damaged. Not as much as the front of Sharmila’s car. But impaired none the less.

Gotta say – got some of my confidence back after driving in New York downtown in peak office hours. In the darkest of evenings with constant rains. The visibility, to me, felt like that of the chap out on the lookout tower of the Titanic on that fateful night. Brooklyn was a bear to drive in, by any stretch of imagination!

Got honked only once! Still, I drove like a man possessed. It was going to be…. errr… New York or bust for my driving skills!!

Dropped Natasha and Tuey at their residence (am going to miss those two) and then checked into a hotel.

Finally, got myself an Old Fashioned to calm my nerves down!!!

13 December 2023

Hoover Dam!

That bright white spot you see (about half a centimeter long with the distinct arch) about one fifth the length from right edge of the picture and one fifth the height from the bottom edge of the picture – that is Hoover Dam! Check out the huge Lake Mead it has created by stopping that water. When full, that is the largest reservoir in the USA. River Colorado runs thru it. And right in the middle of it is the boundary of Nevada and Arizona.

13 December 2023


We are on the north side. The other side windows would get a clean shot into The Strip except everybody is glued to their TV with their windows down.

That airport on the left end (and a little above the middle of the picture) should be North Las Vegas airport.