What to do between work – scientific travel writing?

Note: I wrote this on my earlier blog hosted as https://parallelspirals.blogspot.com. I recovered the text from the WayBack Machine. This post appeared on April 6, 2011. I’m trying to collect here again all my old writings spread on various blogs.

For quite some time now, I have been thinking about what to do generally between work. The thought of traveling did strike me as a useful thing to do. While I have not arrived at any useful direction on what to do for work, I have come to an idea on what to do between work or to take a break from work.

The idea is an extension on my “Telescopes of India” tour, which did not really work out so well. The idea is to travel to a country which has an astronomical observatory. What I would do next is not really very clear to me now. But, I think I’ll figure things out as I learn more and more about the observatory itself. I don’t know if there’s a genre called “scientific travel writing” but it would be an interesting genre to begin writing in.

There are many people interested in visiting scientific places – like observatories and laboratories. It’ll be interesting to see how an ordinary guy is given entrance to these facilities. This will be in addition to living with a scientist and learning about the “scientific culture” of the organisation. I think that’s how I would define scientific travel writing.

This is really the first draft of this idea but it sounds like an interesting concept for me to try and explore in the future. Since, I have been following the space and astronomy community, this is where I hope to begin probing. It’s a huge experiment.

What’s the program, 2009

2008 has been overall not been too good. I’ve become lazy, stupid, careless, angry, unhealthy, addicted to GPRS and more committed to getting a job in ISRO! But, its helped in meeting more wonderful people, providing great insights into myself (during the lazy bouts), better awareness, a maturity and possibly a philosophy that I can call my own. It’s been wonderful to see all of these things melting together to package my life. But, I guess we always strive for better things in life and I think I could do with a little discipline.

On the agenda for 2009 are a slight weight loss and health gain, less lazy life, addition of interesting information, recapturing old interests and living life to the fullest again. Before today, I’ve never demanded but have always got my things through manipulation and creating under currents. I’ve been a bore because there was nothing working except my brain and you’ve gotta excuse the old bean for not coming up with things that I was doing when I was lazy. :)

So, let’s get to work on 2009, which is coming up in 4 days (assuming today is over and it’s 27th).

Let’s begin from health gain. I’ve never exercised in my life and therefore I’ve managed to grow in several directions and have had a great time being lazy. But, I guess from 2009 for about 30 more years, I’ll be working my ass off to satisfy myself and enjoy life to fullest before retiring and going lazy again! On the works are a spiritual and physical self-training program like no other. The program could have the side benefit of teaching me how to fix my own cycle, which is good in case I go out of a job with the continuing recession and all! It could also make me a master Yoga expert teaching 40 kids how to do Yoga to relieve stress from the work they do. Although, I don’t want to do either, but it’s cool no? This also involves an extension on the ban on fast food to everything. Personally, fast food aids me to lose all my pains. I almost use it like drugs. There’s nothing 2 samosas and a bottle of Coke won’t do for me. But, I’ll try and be off them even if it pains me.

Academics are a painful reality and I’m more than happy to be out of college in 2009. If there’s anything trying to stop me, I’m pretty sure it will not succeed. There’s nothing that will stop me from not graduating this year unless of course I die or if I battle deadly diseases never seen before by mankind or if a beautiful girl elopes with me (hopefully, that girl has enough money for both of us to survive cause I don’t) or perhaps all those other little things which rarely happen.

I almost hate everything that I have to study, so I’ll be taking up some notes that my friend Kirk has uploaded online along with a few books on mathematics, radio astronomy and computers. These will be a self-learning program along with learning many points in law. I think my friend, Raghunandan can help me with some law points. And last but not the least, I plan to do multiplication tables again!

From all the drab world we go to the world of the Internet. 2009 will see more of my life streams going online. My new cell phone enables me to upload videos and photos. If I can I also plan to participate in the 365 Days of Astronomy Programme. Let’s see how that goes. Keep watching this space here. Talking about this space, I have gone back to my old domain – http://www.pradx.org. Don’t have to move there now, I’ll only be moving in September 2009 when the furniture there will be ready for all of you and you’ll can come visit.

I plan to work in 3 projects overall. 1 is my final year undergrad project at Air India. The second is the Telescopes of India tour project. The last one is a bit of a secret for now, but I will reveal it at the appropriate time.