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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

In Atlanta from 26 - 29 April'09

It is indeed a great city just for the reason that it has Dr Ram Sriram who is one of the very few Crt. Distinguished Professor in Accountancy ho has won one of the most prestigious award of the Nation for the year 2001-02 for excellence in teaching accountancy. His wife Smt Rama Ram is also a distinguished Medical research analyst who has more than 30 - 40 research papers to her credit. We had the great honor of being in their house and we are thoroughly enjoying it. They are so simple and it is nice to learn this from them!

We had the great opportunity to visit Coca-Cola Museum which was a thrilling experience! I had the the chance to taste all the products of Coca-Cola throughout the world at one place and one has to experience it to understand the thrill. We had a 4d demo of the making of Coke and it was indeed fantastic. Only sad thing is appa dropped our camera after coming out of the museum and he felt very bad for same. Well this has been keeping us all united bring my memories to you and so we have decided to by a new one either today 28th April'09 or tomorrow at SanJose. I am sure you will enjoy the pictures taken here in the museum.

We also went to Dr Ramesh's residence in the evening on 27th for dinner and had a "maja" time with hi sons Nikil & Pranav playing wi games and discussing on Cricket, which game they were not very much clear. I explained to my knowledge and also had lots of fun with every one there especially their thatha. Appa, Kanna mama and Poongi uncle went to Swaminarayanan temple which i believe is one of the most beautiful temples in the world. You can have details in The Shiva vishnu temple we performed on 26th April'09 also was very beautiful and divine. We will be leaving to SanJose on 29th April and will report from there later.
St. Louis -Playing Cricket & Watching IPL - 22nd to 25th April'09

It was a drastic change of climate we experienced when we reached St. Louis from Calgary. Yes after being to Banff no to a place almost like November Chennai as far as the climate! It was kind of hot and sultry and we were met by Mr Anand who took us to our host for the next couple of days, Mr Sridhar's residence. Poongi uncle jokingly was telling me that we will have 
"vathakozhambu and urulai karimudhu" during the flight but that became true after a long day flt journey at Sridhar uncle's residence. We not only enjoyed food but also their warmth. 

While we were playing UNO Sridhar uncle taught us a new game on cards - Mail - which resembled rummy, but i was not very much impressed. Appa and Poongi uncle liked it and it as all fun for them. Poongi uncle was the winner almost every time and the host family was all at loss - i am sure just in the game. We also got opportunity to Play or dear game Cricket and were all happy. H/ever as during all or local games we also had fight which could have been avoided. Well that's gully Cricket any way!

Later e moved to Mr Chandramouli's residence which was like being in a big Hotel in Kodaikanal. Yes! so big and beautiful it was. Ms. Mahitha Bhardwaj, his daughter, a talented personality who has given performances on Keyboard, plays Piano, sings and performs Bharathanatyam. It was so nice of her grandma to wish me and it was all fun being with the family to watch "Bommalattam" a movie e all like, not only for the film but also for the ambiance we were seeing it. Eventhough we could not see the "St. Louis Arch" we left with great satisfaction of having been with two excellent families.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Great news

I am pleased to inform all that i have passed by 8th std and now promoted to 9th std! I got this information in the night at 1145pm 21st April our time and we were in Calgary. We reached St. Louis today and was greeted with Pal Payaam by Mr & Mrs Sridhar and family. We enjoyed the evening celebrating the result ith UNO card game and Ifi games. All this after a long day -  Yes we woke up at 430am caught a flt at 8am at Calgary and reached St. Louis at 430pm. We were met Mr Anand and reached our host's residence at about 6pm. Looking forward to a great time in St. Louis.

I am happy to give two video clippings of taken at BANFF - Calgary. Hope you all enjoy.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Tour to BANFF - A great Tour - Thanks to Mr Shree and Raga Mala

It was an exiting morning for me and appa as we were to proceed to BANFF - Snow capped mountains. We were met by Mr Shree who had offered to take us to this tour after the concert on April 19, 2009 when Poongi uncle told him about my wish to see these mountains. It was indeed a never to miss trip and Poongi uncle (ho had already seen it) and Kanna mama also joined us for the tour. It was a drive for about 2 hrs and on way Shree uncle showed us many thing including the Ghost Lake. We enjoyed walking on the icy lake and proceeded to Banff. it was really a exciting scene to see White ice mountains all round us. The time we spent there, the Winch drive and the drive etc cannot be said in words and so i am requesting you all to see the photo link above. 

It is interesting to know that Mr Shree's father was one of the pioneers to have explored to go to the top of the BANF mountain and to study  impact of COMIC rays at this place. His name Mr. venkatesan is inscribed on a plaque at the top of the mountain crediting him for this effort by the Canadian Government. What an achievement and Mr Shree  uncle  is a proud son indeed!!

We were hosted for dinner by Sri Bharath uncle who was very friendly with me and took us to Maurya restaurant. Its so unfortunate we could not take our camera so missed to take a photo with him. May be it is reserved for our next visit!
In Montreal on 18th & Calgary on 19th & 20th April'09

It was indeed great day on 18th April with a sound sleep after viewing a film at our host Dr Krishnamurthy's house and in the evening the venue was just at a walkable distance. The concert went well and Alex & Alex on PA did a great job or the audience. H/ever we had no monitor and so all the three of us had some difficulty.  The concert was very much appreciated and when we told this problem after the concert Mr Gopi Menon & the team felt sorry and appreciated the good presentation given by the team. The dinner was a kind of get together of many of the volunteers and friends and was really good. I really loved the Pussy - the Black cat very much in this house!

After waking up early, proceeded to the airport to go to Calgary on the 19th april'09. Thanks to InduReka aunty, we had our brunch in the flight. Calgary airport was nice and we were met by Mr day Thakkur, president Raga Mala and Mr Howard and drove us to "Nirvana" a Indian restaurant here we had good lunch. Later we reached Econolodge, the place of our stay which had swimming pool. The concert in the evening went well with appreciation for the team from all the adience. Here too we had standing ovation after the concert. 

We had nice swim yesterday 20th April and spent good time with Mr Sudeep who hosted us for lunch at a East Indian Restaurant named Namaskar and enjoyed the food. He discussed many subjects with appa and it was interesting for me to listen. It was also nice of Udhay Mathur uncle to have taken us to "Sears Mall" to buy shoe for Poongi uncle to go to Banf - Sno mountains on 21st. e went to Southern Spice restaurant. while i had Onion Rava Masala other three had Thali meal and the food was very authentic. Later we found out that the chef as Mr Mohan from Trichy and we gave him lots of compliments for a great dinner. 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

My mother's wedding day gift to me!

It was a different wedding day April 12th, celebrations for my parents as my amma had a great concert in Villiwakkamn, Chennai and appa and i were enjoying the sight seeing in Montreal. Here is the concert pictures of my mom and thanks to Raghu uncle for sending it to me.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Canada - where i am going to play Kaanada

Welcome to Canada! Yes i am welcoming you all to see the pictures we have taken as we enter Canada. On April 16, 2009 we left Dallas. After having idli at St. Luis and Puliyodharai and Curd rice (thanks to Jayashree aunty, Dallas) at Chicago, we took a small 52 seater plan and arrived in Montreal. We stayed for our organiser who had to come from downtown and so had the taste of Canadian Hot Chocolate at the airport. Mr Gopi Menon, who had come here before 35 years for good, i o nice and took us to our host's house. Dr. Krishnamurthy's family once again, touch wood, has been very nice to us and we are having fun with great warmth & good food just for the asking.

Myself and appa went out with Sri Gopi Menon, who keeps singing Sai bhajan very well all throught, and explored Montreal city shopping mall. It is all underground and covers almost entire city. The metro is very good, i experienced it in Kolkatta as well, and you can see the photo of all this above. We had good lunch with Pizza and Ice cream for me and Naan with potato & Mutter paneer for appa and Gopi Menon uncle. Gopi uncle also took us to the gigantic Olympic stadium (1976) and the BIO-DEM centre. He also drove us on a city tour of Montreal.

Later in the evening had good practice session with Embar Kannan uncle and then after dinner saw "Naan Kadavul" before going to bed at 1115 pm. Now we are going for another practice session before lunch and will be going ahead to the venue at 530 pm. will update on concert later tomorrow.
In Dallas on April 15, 2009

As i had written earlier we went to Mr & Mrs Shanthi Mrali's residence for dinner on April 15th 2009. Their daghter Megna sang a song and has got a good voice. Their son Shyam who is 16 years old has jst returned from Cleveland after performing a one hour concert there on Saxaphone. It was indeed a srprie to know that the instrument cost around $ 2000 and also he hd got a new one which is more like a clarinet costing just $ 700. Shyam played both and e had good time listening to hi skills in Carnatic & Jazz music. They had a Casio keyboard and on their request played western lessons there. Also took photo just before leaving Dallas from Sri & Smt Jayashree Manikantan house and hope to return back soon!

I hope you like the photos above  which were taken on the 15th April'09.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Our Dallas Trip April 12 - 14, 2009
After the Austin concert we all left to Dallas in two cars thanks to my appa's friend Sri Manikantan and my thatha's (paternal) guide and well wisher Smt. Om Bhavatharini's son-in-law Sri Baskaran who had come down to Austin to pick us up. It was joyful 3 hr drive and we could not stay for Sri VVS mama concert here also as we had to drive down. We picked up Bakthavatchalam uncle's baggage as he was coming to Dallas by flt next day and this gave an oppurtunity to meet him in person in Jayashree Manikantan aunty's house. We had good fun with lots of jokes shared by all of during his visit. Jayahree aunty & Manikantan uncle were very happy to have got Bakthavatchalam uncle visit their house. 

I have been having good time here even though TT is not available but UNO and WI games are here and i play with Sahana, Sanjana and of course our team of appa, unlce and Poongi uncle. We visited Smt Athirai & Sri Baskaran uncle's house for dinner yesterday 14th april'09 and met lot of people who had come to see us. I played with Akash and Avinash, Mr/s Baskaran's children for some time. We had nice time and today we are to meet Poongi ncle's friend's family Mr/s Shanthi Murali. Today we went to buy luggage as one which we brought is of no use now with handles broken and spent some time on shopping. 

Understand Dallas is the  place where John F. Kennedy was shot dead and had a glimpse of the museum from outside. Monuments entry fees are really high with $ 20 as fee for this. I was thanking our Govt. as they are charging very low entry fee for our monuments!

Weekend concerts at Boston April 11th and April 12th at Austin.

It was indeed a great weekend with a concert at Boston on Saturday afternoon from 230 - 4pm and i was really moved to see lot of people coming and appreciating me for the performance. Thanks to Marc Rossi uncle who had come for interaction on 9th April'09, there was a music company which wanted to make an album of mine! A great news to have after a performance. God willing it should be happening soon! Later we (myself and appa) were picked up by Sasi uncle and his son Suraj & drove us to their house. It was indeed a long drive but for all the people in USA it is just 40 mts drive! On reaching we had some pleasantries exchanged and Suraj and me enjoyed playing car game on the computer. Well i earned lots of points too!

Appa was treated with tasteful Adais and i had ordered for a pizza which i shared with Suraj. Suraj's mom packed us Adai and Puliyodarai for the next day long flt Boston - Chicago - Austin. The food with the curd rice of Sumana Aunty tasted really great when we had them as breakfast in Chicago during transit on 12th April'09 on way to Austin. My uncle Embar Kannan and Poongulam Subramaniam uncle stayed back at the concert venue and returned to Mr & Mrs Anand uncles house after performing a concert with Sri T, M, Krishna. We also wanted to stay for that but having come to Boston and for seeing appa's' friend;s family we had to leave. Appa had great time over lunch with Mr  Mrs Srinivasan on April 9th as i could not go due to slight ill health which caught on me due to being inactive on the 8th April as we did not play at all the entire day! 

At Austin airport we had the opportunity to meet Sri VV Subramaniam unlce, Violin Maestro, and his son Sri VVS Murari along with Sri Thiruvaroor Bakthavatchalam sir, Mrudhangam genius. We all were picked by Sri Nagarajan sir's volunteers and drove to Studio 6 Hotel for a healthy and tasteful lunch. We had our concert from 3:30 - 5:30 pm and thanks to Mr Dan, the Sound Engineer all well went well with regard to concert with good appreciation for us.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Here is the link for the photos taken during our trip till date.

US Photos Arpil 3rd, 2009
photos 4apr-7apr
It is indeed a great blessing from god that we were hosted by Mr/s Sumana Anand family here in Boton and i had all the best of what my uncle Embar Kannan use to talk good about his USA trips. The food was to my liking thanks to Ashiq (15yr old) & Sneha (9yr old) children of Mr/s Sumana Anand, who also has similar food habits. There was TT table which was kept busy almost everyday for 6 - 8 hours. Big screen TV with movies going on and on. UNO card game, Basketball throwing efforts and most important a chill & freezing cold climate. 

We had lunch out with TARA aunty, a renowned Violin & Vocal teacher and Shailaja Gargeya aunty (relative of my guru Kalimamani A. Kanyakumari madam) one day and had fun playing carrom & Wi games. The interaction session with Marc Rossi uncle at Sumana aunty's house was interesting and i also caught up little illness which made me miss appa's trip to visit Mr Srinivasan's, Rasikapriya yahoo group,residence. It was nice of him to have come to drop appa and also spend some time with me. The medicine from Sumana anty and the warmth from all with me made me recover soon and i was ll set for the concert on Saturday 11th April'09
Ellam Iraivan Seyal

It all looks to me a dream. Yes i am now in Boston having completed a lec-dem and a concert in Portland, USA on the 3rd & 4th April'09. It was indeed like a suspense thriller for me till i actually took the flt on the 3rd April. We were suppose to take the flt on the 1st morning but at the last minute we were informed that our passports were held up in Canadian Embassy for Visa issuance. It came only on the 2nd evening at 7pm and now the space for us in the flt!

While Kannan uncle, Poongulam uncle and self got ourselves booked in a direct flt MAA/Frankfurt/Portland, appa got only the flt MAA/Frankfurt/Seattle/Portland. Then we reached Portland by 12noon on 3rd April'09 and just went to the hotel Phoenix Inn and we changed ourselves and proceeded to Intel Factory or a lec-dem.

Many thought we would probably have jet lag but "Ellam Iravan Seyal" all three of us were fit to do the lec-dem in a grand manner. Appa could reach hotel directly at 5:30pm only. Then we had good food organised by volunteers thru" Mr/S Raman who were the host thru' Rasika - an organisation committed to promoting music in Portland.

Portland was indeed cold and a great small city. I loved the climate and it was all systematic every where and every one was so cool! No tensions seen and as appa said every one was with the attitude of nothing will go wrong!

On the 4th April we had the concert at Portland Performing Art Center, a beautiful hall and i was fortunate to perform there. The PA system was great and the ambiance was simply superb. After the concert we were greeted and appreciated by many and it was a great feeling.

Thanks to my uncle for bringing the laptop i could easily access skype and speak to my mom every now and then. Also thanks to the hosts who all are very kind and nice to me. Ellam Iraivan Seyale!