Saturday, May 30, 2009

A [Street] Light Post

i had written some time back about a slum that sprang up almost over a weekend, by illegally occupying some prime land that was under dispute.
the initial dwellings were very temporary, thatched units.
a few months after the initial 'invasion and occupation', a small fire broke out in one corner of this area.
this was probably an excuse for the residents to reconstruct more permanent structures.
now, one can see concrete, asbestos etc used for the small one- or two-room hutments.

thanks to the local politician / elected rep, this colony gets water supplied daily through tankers.

the latest development - that i noticed before the elections, and thought that it could be one of the election promises were electric poles along the narrow lanes.
you can see the line of these posts in the background - and the leaders pictures painted on the wall, representing the local 'association' affiliated to a party.
you can also see one of the water tanks, that is filled by the water tanker regularly.

i am watching this development which is now right next to a big hotel [multi-star, i assume] project.
that project had to reclaim some land that was used by another, smaller colony.
while most of those residents had taken some compensation and had vacated,a few stuck around, refusing to move and demanding a higher compensation.
a temple they had built acted as a shelter.
you can see the temple in the background.

another street light that had become a recent friend of mine is this:
this is a solar powered street light.
this picture may not be very impressive, but the shadow of the solar pane used to be my shade, while i waited for the company bus in the mornings.
the pickup spot did not have any other option for a shade and i would shift slowly with the sun - and if i waited for about 10 minutes, i would have moved a few feet at least, to keep the sun from my face, by 'hiding' under the shadow of the panel.

after the last serious post, hopefully this was a 'light' post!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

writing with a 'holy' hand..

i am back with this post after a long gap.
the first couple of weeks, it was travel and a lot of backlogged work.
then, it was a forced abstinence, as part of the recuperation.
this was needed, as i had decided to get the two implants i had in my right forearm removed.

with that, there are no foreign bodies in my body [!] except the sutures that would dissolve in a few more days.

the original incident was about six years ago. an accidental fall while searching for some stuff in the loft meant that i had to have 2 steel rods - one each for radius and ulna.

at that time, the doctor had said that these foreign bodies may be removed once the healing is complete - and preferably within 2-3 years, though the material is rated for at least 15 years.

had been postponing this every year, with some excuse or the other. so, this time, decided that it had to be done.
the doctor warned me that while he would attempt to remove the implants, due to the delay, he might have to decide not to remove it, in case of complications.

the next big decision for me was at the operating table. whether to go for a GA or a local block. i wanted to leave it to the anesthetist and the doctor. they decided for a local block.
i was excited that i could watch all that would happen - but, as my head was turned the other side, i could only catch their conversations.

this was a different experience, as i could almost walk out of the operation theater, compared to the original surgery, when it took me a while to get over the GA.

back in the room, it was a very insightful experience to see and [not] feel one arm, that was completely numb and not feeling part of your body at all!
while, mentally, i could move my fingers, they would not move!

over the next few hours, i could feel the sensation and movement coming back and feel better.

it is now two weeks and some of the muscles, are, technically, recovering from the trauma.
i keep exercising, but am unable to 'connect' with some of the muscles, that seem to have either become stiff or taking their own time to get back the strength and movement, in coordination with the rest of the muscles.

during the procedure, i could hear some hammering and some hushed discussions, though i could not feel anything.
there were 2 screws that needed additional work, the doctor told me later.
one was a hole that had some bony overgrowth

and another screwhead that had become blunt.

luckily, both of them could be handled with some filing and hammering.

when i looked at the equipment used, hammers, screwdrivers, chisels etc, they look quite normal and low-tech. a disappointment, as i was expecting some automatic drills etc, like at a dentist's.

with this, my hand is now 'holy' - or should it be 'holey'?

p.s. thanks to all the well wishers, who had called, sent emails or SMSes.