Under my byline

Gait to Ghangharia

Posted in Fitness, Living by Rrishi on 20 September 2009

Looking back towards Govindghat (c) Wrik Basu 2009Climbing towards Hemkund and the Valley of Flowers takes more than inspiration and fortitude

Two kilometres in, I realised this was going to be much harder than I had thought. In fact, I hadn’t thought about it much at all. We had just stepped through the gate at the Govindghat end (with a “Satnam! Wahe Guru!”) onto the suspension bridge across the blue Alaknanda and stepped off at the other end, disdaining the ponies, to begin the long walk upward. (more…)


Running for re-election

Posted in Fitness, Living by Rrishi on 5 April 2009

When BJP candidate Vijay Goel goes seeking votes among morning walkers and joggers in city parks, he’s on to a good thing

In an urban constituency, unlike a rural one, organising an election rally won’t bring you face-to-face with very many of your constituents. So candidates have to go out the old-fashioned way and hunt for voters. In a generally affluent constituency like New Delhi, BJP candidate Vijay Goel decided to hunt where the fellows roam: in neighbourhood parks, in the morning, while citizens are on their morning jogs and walks. (more…)

Young blood?

Posted in Diet, Fitness, Health, Living by Rrishi on 7 December 2008

JalebisFar too many young adults are victims of high cholesterol

“Well, I’d gone for an executive health checkup, and when they gave me the results, I was shocked…” That’s how most of these stories start, with a blithe customer unpleasantly surprised to discover that he or she has unhealthily high levels of cholesterol. It’s something typically associated with middle age, and by these people, with their parents, perhaps — because these customers are all young, still only in their 20s or early 30s. (more…)

Poetry in motion

Posted in Fitness, Health, Profiles by Rrishi on 17 August 2008

Hotelier Ajay Bakaya devised an unusual fitness regime for himself

For a hotel chain that’s roaring up the charts — 10 hotels to be completed this year, 11 the next, 10 again the year after — its Delhi office is surprisingly drab. It is a small and functional space in a nondescript building on a potholed lane in one of Delhi’s industrial areas.

In fact, the cabin of Sarovar Hotels and Resorts’ executive director Ajay Bakaya is at nodding distance from the receptionist herself, and she nods us through in no time at all.


Steps to success

Posted in Fitness by Rrishi on 27 July 2008

Sears Tower, Chicago, tallest building in the USAWhere there are skyscrapers there are staircases, and fanatics to run all the way up them

Mumbai has never been a city of stunted ambitions, but the release of mill lands to developers has made Mumbaikars look upwards as never before: at the monster skyscrapers in which those who can afford to will live and work. A new residential tower in Jogeshwari is going to hit 60 floors. Even in horizontal urbs like Delhi, Hyderabad, Lucknow and Kochi things are looking up.


No full stops in India

Posted in Fitness, Health, Living by Rrishi on 15 August 2007

In India in 2067, being a senior citizen will be an opportunity, not a handicap

It’s 10 AM on a Tuesday in 2067, and the Raghuram household is having breakfast. Ayesha, 8, is trying to eat her upma while checking her Notifyer to see if her friend has recovered from her cold. They usually walk to school together. (more…)

To stand tall, walk

Posted in Books, Fitness, Health by Rrishi on 27 May 2007

The PM tells us to live simpler and waste less, so step out of your car and walk

Samuel Pepys, the 17th-century British Navy bureaucrat and diarist, seems to have done a great deal of walking. Judging from his diary, he walked often in company. Even so, unless the walk was part of the evening social promenade, it was simply a way to get from one place to another. For instance, Pepys never says “I walked a brisk two miles and felt proud of myself,” as today we might. (more…)