January 07, 2013

Local discount

I walk through Darling Harbour to work everyday.  I’d often stop at Harbourside mall to grab something to eat or a cup of coffee.  It’s been a routine for almost two years now.  Today, as I was walking towards Gloria Jeans, a shop on the way attracted my attention with the sign “Best cappuccino in Darling Harbour”.  I thought I’d try their coffee today.  After ordering my flat white, I noticed that the price wasn’t exactly cheap.  It was $4.80 here, while it’d cost me only $4 in Gloria Jeans, or $3.5 in the shop right next to my home.

I like clearing out my wallet of all coins, and today I had $4.90 in coins in my wallet.  I paid $4.80 in coins, and the shopkeeper asked me, “Do you work here, sir?”.  “No, I work in Pyrmont.  I live in the city, so I walk through this way”, was my response.  He gave 80 cents back and told me that locals get a discount in all shops in the mall.  He said, “When you buy something in this mall, tell them you work here and get a discount.  Even if you’re just walking through, you are eligible.”

You have no idea how pleased I am!

January 01, 2013

Yearly review: 2012

As each year ends, I’d think “wow, this year was great”, and 2012 was no exception.  Contrary to last few years, I am extremely satisfied with how my work has improved.  Often, it feels like I am back in my MKU days.  I love going to work most days.

On the personal front things are a little bit different, though.  I am not reading as much as I used to; I am not writing as much as I used to; I am not thinking as much as I used to.  I probably don’t write as much code as I used to for my “hobby” projects.  But it’s understandable because I devote a lot of time for my work.  I sometimes even want to work during weekends, which is completely unlike me.  (I’d usually leave work behind when I leave office.)

I didn’t travel much this year, but I did do a few road trips, including a 1.5 weeks trip to (a part of) the Australian Outback.  I was super-active on Google+ for a few months, but I think my interest has been slowly waning like it does on any social networking platform.  That’s probably a good thing because I can use that time in doing things that are more meaningful — like reading books or writing code.

Earning in dollars makes many things possible, but like everything else in life that comes at a price, too.  Staying away from family has made me realise how much I identify myself as a part of my family rather than my own individual self.  The desire to do something meaningful to people of my town, my state, and my country, has been intensifying too.  Sadly, I just can’t figure out what it is that I can do.  Hopefully I would some day.

When I was in college, I had deep disrespect for a kind of people.  I can’t quite describe them in words, but they’re ambitious, they seem to work hard, they have habits that look very artificial (like consciously avoiding negative thoughts).  Over the past few years, I know I am slowly becoming one of that kind.  Only difference is, now I am seeing those despised characteristics from inside out and they don’t seem all that bad.

Overall, I enjoyed all of 2012.  Thinking about it, I think there wasn’t a single day when I wasn’t willing to die.  Quoting Dido here would be appropriate, I think.
Just this life, I need no other
Just this day, I need no more
Just this moment, let it all stop here
Let it all stop here I’ve had my fill.